GDC 2009

Nintendo's Iwata Announces Wii Storage SystemNintendo President Satoru Iwata announced a new storage system for the Wii during his GDC Keynote earlier today. The storage system, which is composed of high capacity SD cards that are launchable from the Wii menu, will allow users to store Virtual Console and WiiWare games for play later. This will significantly add to the Wii experience, allowing Virtual Console to expand and include some larger third-party games, such as STARFORCE by Tecmo Ltd., and Mappy, Gaplus and Tower of Druaga by Namco Bandai Games Inc. starting today.

Also in the keynote were mentions of the release of the Nintendo DSI on April 5th, as well as talk of a new Zelda game for the DS, called The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, which will incorporate new and old, appealing to both longtime Zelda aficionados and people who are new to the game. Finally, Iwata noted that the Wii has shipped over 50 million units, and the DS has shipped over 100 million, expanding opportunities for developers everywhere to reach a much larger audience than ever before.

You can see the live blog from the Keynote here.

Live Blog: GDC 2009 Keynote - Nintendo President Satoru Iwata

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata is here at GDC 2009 to talk about the Wii, DS, and presumably DSi. Iwata-san will be discussing the unique way that Nintendo's current offering of platforms help developers do things that are impossible on the other consoles and portables.

Brian Leahy:  

Welcome (virtually) to the cavernous Esplanade Ballroom at the Mascone Center in San Francisco, CA.

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Guitar Hero World Tour DrumsActivision has finally announced the PC and Mac versions of Guitar Hero World Tour. So if you've been gazing longingly at your computer, waiting to rock the hell out with a full band, you'll get your chance this summer.

Developed by Aspyr, the PC and Mac versions of World Tour will be out in North America in June and will come bundled with a wireless fake guitar. Reportedly, PS3 drums, guitars and microphones will work for the game, as well so you'll be able to get the band together if you pick up the instruments one at a time.

The entire song list from the console version of World Tour will be represented and you will be able to play online. The make-your-own-song studio is included too, but the Guitar Hero Store is apparently not part of PC and Mac Guitar Hero World Tour. Reportedly, you won't be able to share homemade songs with anyone. It's not clear whether World Tour will support downloading songs. Hopefully I'll hear back from Activision soon about this, and I'll let you know.

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The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks Debut Trailer »

Big bombshell from the Game Developers Conference today: Nintendo has confirmed the next Zelda game! The tentative title is The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks and the game will be available for the Nintendo DS before 2010.

At the Nintendo keynote, attendees were shown some footage from the game, and you can see it above. Based on what was shown, the title will feature the cel-shaded style animation seen in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. Other observations: In the clip, Link fights a battle with a crab-like creature (a Zora?) and controls a suit of armor or sidekick with the touchscreen. Link is also shown riding a train, dressed a little like a conductor. The train has a huge cannon. Rail-shooter? Looks like it!

There's no word on whether trains will figure prominently in the game, but it sure looks that way. The title, "Spirit Tracks," could refer to train tracks, couldn't it? And boat travel was a huge part of Wind Waker, so train travel seems like an obvious (and awesome!) choice.

The game will reportedly be playable at this year's E3 and I predict a huge line if it's there. We'll be bringing more info and hopefully some screens and a trailer as soon as they become available, so keep watching this space!

Updated: Announcement Trailer Live!

GDC 2009 First Look Preview: 'R.U.S.E.'

On Monday, I was given the opportunity to see a demo of R.U.S.E., Ubisoft's new real-time strategy game for the PC, Playstation 3, and Xbox 360. Developed by French studio Eugen Systems (creators of Act of War: Direct Action), R.U.S.E. is an interesting new take on the genre featuring some very impressive new technologies.

The core mechanic of R.U.S.E. is that the player is encouraged to use deception to trick their opponent into making ill-advised tactical moves. Gone is the conventional RTS staple of the fog of war and instead, players are given ruses which are similar to the perks you might find in a shooter such as Call of Duty.

Before each match, the player is allowed to choose three ruses that they will be able to employ in combat. From the demo it appeared there were upwards of 20 ruses available in the game. They are broken into three categories: hide, deceive and steal. On a basic level, hide ruses allows players to hide units and buildings, deceive ruses allows the player to build decoy structures and armies, and steal ruses allows the player to steal information from their opponent, such as army movements.

Continue reading for the full R.U.S.E. preview.

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Tecmo and Team Ninja (sans infamous former Lead Itagaki) is back to reconstitute your Ninja Gaiden experience once again... well, at least for PS3 owners. Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 boasts a brand new co-op online feature as their main attraction. Currently revealed, Ryu will be flanked by either Dead or Alive's ninjitsu expert Ayane or Ninja Gaiden Dragon Sword's Momiji who wields a lance. Camera and gameplay tweaks will work to make this another fine-tuned PS3 exclusive with planned DLC.

No confirmations on any plans for updates to Xbox 360 original Ninja Gaiden 2, but you can expect this "complete" edition this fall.

Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Debut Trailer

Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Debut Trailer »

Final Fantasy Logo

If you weren't following TheFeed's excellent liveblog of Nintendo's GDC keynote, you missed this news: Square Enix is bringing three Final Fantasy titles to the Wii: Two downloadable WiiWare games and a Virtual Console title.

On WiiWare, you can expect Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, an RPG that continues the story that began in 1991's Final Fantasy IV. In Japan, this game was released as a downloadable cellular phone application in February 2008. While it's not exactly breaking news, unless you're a Japanese cell phone fan, it'll probably is for you. The second WiiWare title is Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a Darklord. Darklord was released as a cell title in Japan, as well and according to Square, it has been downloaded over 3 million times!

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Katamari CosplayGood news for Japan-fans and devotees who love to roll garbage up into big balls: A PlayStation 3 version of colorful puzzle game Katamari Damacy is coming out.

The latest issue of Japanese gaming bible Famitsu dropped some details on Katamari Damacy Tribute. Here's what they said:

  • The game supports full 1080p -- as in 1920x1080.
  • Features over 30 stage goals.
  • More objects to pick up and roll.
  • Some kind of PlayStation Network support...Although how it will work, isn't known.
  • Customized game rendering. Players can choose "comic touch," "new touch," or "wood touch," as well as "original" and thus change the way Katamari looks.
  • New play mode: No details revealed.
  • "Monochrome" level: Everything is in black and white in this Katamari level, except The Prince of the Cosmos.

Katamari Damacy Tribute is scheduled to come out some time this year in Japan, although the game is reportedly only around 40 percent finished right now. No word yet on when/if it's coming to the States.

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Galactic Adventure

Electronic Arts has confirmed the release date of the first downloadable content for sandbox/strategy game Spore. "Galactic Adventures" will be yours, either through the Internets or at a local retailer on June 23rd. No word on a price yet.

The "Galactic Adventures" expansion offers quest-based missions for the "space phase" of the original game. It allows players to beam down to planets, play mission-based adventures and create their own customized adventures. Yes, I foresee a great gout of Mario-themed levels, as well as some interesting new uses for the "Sporn" people have created.

"Galactic Adventures" is the first of four Spore add-ons that are coming. Soon, we will see Spore Creature Keeper, a PC title aimed at a younger audience that lets kids train and nurture created creatures; Spore Hero a Wii adventure game focusing on creativity and evolution and Spore Hero Arena where Spore creatures fight to the death.

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GDC 2009 Daily Wrap-Up 03.24.09 »

GDC 2009 is ramping up and the show floor opens tomorrow, but we've been busy here in San Francisco. 

To provide you an inside look at what we've been covering and what to expect, X-Play's Adam Sessler met up with G4's director of dditorial, Billy Berghammer, and TheFeed's own Raymond Padilla to give a daily wrap-up of today's events. 

So be sure to watch the video for Billy's impressions of inFAMOUS, Ray's thoughts on Microsoft's new SDK, and Adam's impressions from his interview with 38 Studios founder and just retired MLB legend, Curt Schilling. 

Plus, keep your eyes on G4TV.com and X-Play for more GDC coverage. Tomorrow, we'll be bringing a live blog from Nintendo president Satoru Iwata's keynote, our first look impressions of Ubisoft's new RTS, R.U.S.E., and much more.

GDC 2009 Hands-On: 'inFAMOUS'


Posted March 24, 2009 - By bleahy

GDC 2009 Hands-On: 'inFAMOUS'

GDC 2009 is my first chance to go hands-on with Sucker Punch's upcoming PS3 exclusive game inFAMOUS that will be releasing this June. I had not seen the game in person since last year's Tokyo Games Show, but it has come a long way since then. I played a tutorial mission and 3 additional missions here at GDC. Two, as good Cole and another two, as Evil Cole who uses red lightning and it is way awesome.

The controls work extremely well and aiming is crisp and responsive. Climbing buildings is easy and works a lot like Assassin's Creed, but it is much quicker. Cole will automatically grab onto anything that is scalable. Platforming is a breeze as Cole will "snap to" ledges and wires. Oh, and the best part of the game for me, so far, is sliding across a wire or train track propelled by electricity. It is a very enjoyable way to move from rooftop to rooftop across wires or traverse great distances above the streets on the suspended train tracks.

Combat is fast-paced and the game throws a lot of enemies at you. It is very impressive how many enemies and allies can share the screen at the same time. There are slight framerate drops in the most intense battles, but it does not even come close to breaking the game. The standard enemy that I fought used guns and were rather deadly. Thankfully, Cole is deadlier. This is key in a game like inFAMOUS. You feel incredibly powerful and badass.

Keep reading for more on inFAMOUS.

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Independent Games Festival Mobile Award Winners

Running concurrently with GDC, the second annual Independent Games Festival held its Mobile awards today and, spoiler alert, the iPhone dominated the event.

Twenty-seven nominees were picked for seven different categories and even though the event was open to all mobile platforms, the iPhone showed up like Miss America at a Girls in Sweatpants pageant.

The winners split a $30,000 pot and all the finalists are showcasing their games at the IFG Mobile pavilion at GDC.

Here are you IFG Mobile winners!

  • Best Game: Fieldrunners (Subatomic Studios) - iPhone/iPod Touch
  • Innovation in Mobile Game Design: Galcon (Hassey Enterprises) - iPhone/iPod Touch
  • Achievement in Art: Fieldrunners (Subatomic Studios) - iPhone/iPod Touch
  • Technical Achievement: Real Racing (Firemint) - iPhone/iPod Touch
  • Audio Achievement: Zen Bound (Secret Exit) - iPhone/iPod Touch
  • The Next Great Mobile Game: Reflection (Team Reflection) - Nintendo DS
  • Best iPhone Game: Zen Bound (Secret Exit) - iPhone/iPod Touch

DC Universe

During a talk at the Game Developers Conference today in San Francisco, John Smedley, Sony Online Entertainment president, revealed that Sony MMOs The Agency and DC Universe Online are expected to be ready sometime in 2010.

DC Universe Online, a super-heroic MMO featuring comic company DC's characters, is being developed by Sony Online's Austin studio. Its aim is to create a more interactive MMO while still keeping traditional MMO tropes like leveling and inventories in place.

The Agency is based on gunplay. From early descriptions, it sounds like a massive-multiplayer online shooter, as much as an RPG. Players will battle it out with bullets, but also drive around in cars and take part in more traditional RPG style missions, too. Different gear will allow players to change "classes" -- basically going from a DPS machine to a tank, for example.

Reportedly, both of these game are coming out on the PlayStation 3 and the PC.

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Resistance 2

Details about Resistance 2's first DLC are coming out of the Game Developer's Conference. Reportedly, the new content is split into two pieces: A patch (v1.50); and content for the PSN Store. Both will be available on Thursday, March 26.

Here are the details on the patch:

  • Meltdown Mode added - Supposedly, this is a remake of the fave Resistance multiplayer map.
  • New co-op difficulty - If ordinary mortal difficulties are too easy for you and your hardcore friend, Resistance 2 will now offer "Superhuman" difficulty. Higher EXP will be awarded. Good luck. Sounds like you'll need it.
  • Second player PSN login - This is much-needed. Now, if you play split screen, the second player can login to his PSN profile and earn XP, trophies and whatnot.

The new paid content from the PlayStation Network will bring you several maps designed for smaller scale fire-fights. The Aftermath map-pack will run you $5.99. Also: Some new skins are for sale for $0.99 each. 



You've heard about OnLive, the ambitious, new game-streaming service in Billy's overview from this morning.  For a glimpse of the service in action check out this brief flythrough video. Kinda spacey, kinda epic... looks indeed rather functional.

For more in-depth analysis, check out Mr. Berghammer's OnLive report.

OnLive Gaming Service Fly Through

OnLive Gaming Service Fly Through »

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