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Rock Band questions answered (some of 'em)


The folks over at Multiplayer used their "We work for MTV" powers to get some answers out of Harmonix about Rock Band. Of course, the fact that Harmonix also works for MTV probably aided them in this process. Ah yes, they even mention it in the post, so there you go. Anywho, Harmonix answered a few frequently asked questions (there should really be an acronym for that) about Rock Band that have been plaguing the community. First and foremost, there are no plans to offer other hardware configurations aside from the drums, microphone, guitar, and game bundle that has been circulating for a while now. In other words, if you'd prefer a bundle with, say, just a mic and the game, you're out of luck unless you buy them separately (which is still cheaper than the monster bundle). Also of note, the 360 bundle (with a wired guitar, remember) comes with a USB hub for all those other instruments. Finally, for those with Guitar Hero II X-plorers lying around, 3rd party guitars and peripherals should work just fine with Rock Band. We're sure it won't take long for peripheral makers to produce some less expensive versions of the various instruments, so those not looking to break the bank on the bundle may want to wait. Of course, if you're planning on nabbing Guitar Hero III, you should be able to use its guitar as well.

Team Fortress 2 video: Meet the Demoman

The fourth in Valve's series of Team Fortress 2 class videos has emerged, this time showcasing the Demoman. So far, the Demoman has received very little fanfare, with nary a bit of video footage in sight. Sure, we all like riddling things with bullets as the Heavy, or letting our turrets do it for us as the Engineer, but what about the pure, visceral joy of blowing stuff up? Yeah, the Soldier has a rocket launcher, but what about real explosive death? That's where the Demoman comes in. Rather than spoil the video for you, we'll simply direct you to watch it with your heads full of eyeballs.

[Thanks, Sunny]

Shipping this week: fall colors edition

And the flood of new releases keeps on, um, flooding. This week's headlining title is easily The Orange Box from Valve and EA. Boasting what is probably the most bang for you gaming buck this year, The Orange Box contains Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2 Episodes One and Two, Portal, and Team Fortress 2. That's five bits of gaming goodness for one delicious price. Well, it's not a delicious price, but just remember that you'd be expected to pay the same price for just one of the other games being released this week. Speaking of other titles, let's have a look at all the games being released this week.
Now, go forth and purchase. The consumer machine demands it.

[Via Joystiq]

TF2: an extended look at the engineer


With the release of The Orange Box fast approaching, we're itching to get all the info we can about its delicious contents. We're probably most excited for the collection's multiplayer offering, Team Fortress 2. So far, we've been enamored of the clever character class videos that Valve has released, but we haven't seen too much focus on how these various classes actually play. Enter Eurogamer, with a video of our personal favorite, the engineer. The video pretty much covers the things you'll be doing as an engineer, namely building things and dropping fools with your shotgun. Unfortunately, Eurogamer doesn't support embedded videos, so you'll have to leave the comfy confines of X3F to view it. We know it can be scary, but we also know that you can do it. Go ahead, click that "read" link. It's not nearly as scary as it seems.

Bad Company trailer now on XBLM

The Battlefield: Bad Company teaser trailer that was released to the interwebz earlier this month is now available on Xbox Live Marketplace. The trailer (which we've conveniently embedded above) highlights plenty of gameplay as well as exposing some of the overall storyline. We haven't quite figured out if the game is promoting war profiteering or not, but it's certainly promoting excessive destruction. Watch the video closely for plenty of real time destruction as environments crash down from an explosion. If you get the chance, download the HD version on Marketplace. It's real purdy.

Take a tour of the Team Fortress 2 maps

Alright, so we're beginning to understand the characters of Team Fortress 2, but what about their environment? In what sorts of places will we be wreaking havoc? A series of videos has been released giving a brief glimpse of each of Team Fortress 2's six maps: Hydro, Gravel Pit, Well, 2 Fort, Granary, and Dust Bowl. Unfortunately, all the videos are done in a grainy, almost black-and-white style that doesn't exactly mesh with YouTube. Hopefully we'll see some high resolution versions of these videos soon. Still, you can get an idea of the layout of each map and the game types available on them. We've embedded the rest of the videos after the break.

Continue reading Take a tour of the Team Fortress 2 maps

Fifa 08 and Spiderman: FOF demos on XBLM


It was a long time coming -- a demo was expected by the end of August -- but a demo for FIFA 08 has finally landed on Marketplace. A demo has also appeared for the new beat 'em up Spiderman: Friend or Foe. FIFA 08, as you might imagine, focuses on soccer (AKA football), whereas Spiderman: FOF focuses on kicking the crap out of copious baddies. The twist in Spiderman: FOF is that you'll find yourself fighting alongside some of Spidey's biggest enemies. The twist in the FIFA demo is that it's not available in Europe yet. Don't fret though, European readers, for Major Nelson notes that the demo should be crossing the pond "very soon." In the meantime, why not lay the smack down (you know, pugilistic shenanigans) on some hapless comic book villains?

Team Fortress 2: Meet the Engineer

We love all of the Team Fortress 2 character videos. We're just going to abandon all journalistic integrity and say that. They are sweet. The latest video in the TF2 character series introduces the Engineer. We never would have guessed that the Engineer had a sensitive side, but he spends the entire video playing the guitar. Then again, that's the joy of being an Engineer, right? You get to set up turrets to do the killing for you, and that's exactly what you'll see in his video. We won't spoil the fun, but suffice it to say that the Engineer's facial expressions are priceless. Watch, laugh, enjoy.

Oh, and if you haven't seen them already, be sure to check out the Soldier and Heavy videos.

[Via Joystiq]

Skate misses rail, suffers minor delay


A post on the official skate message boards has confirmed that the game has suffered a minor (and unexplained) delay. Those of you rushing out to pick up your copy today (complete with "new game Tuesday" smell) will be disappointed to learn that skate won't be hitting stores until Friday. Granted, it's not a long delay at all, but for those that have been longing for skate's unique new take on the sport, an extra two days can be a lifetime. Ah well, you can play through the demo just a few more times, can't you?

[Via 1UP]

More Rock Band tracks: KISS, Soundgarden, RHCP

And the Rock Band tracks keep coming. EA, MTV, and Harmonix have announced three new tracks for the upcoming rock simulator. Again we see a mix of old and new tracks, in keeping with the songs that have already been revealed. Without further ado, here they are:
  • "Detroit Rock City" by KISS
  • "Dani California" by Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • "Black Hole Sun" by Soundgarden
Find a list of all tracks revealed thus far after the break.

Continue reading More Rock Band tracks: KISS, Soundgarden, RHCP

Loads of new Team Fortress 2 vids

GameVideos has posted a handful of new videos of Team Fortress 2 gameplay. In all, we get to see the engineer, spy, sniper, scout, and soldier doing their thing. We noticed yesterday that the camera can pull away from the player in order to show off an emotion. Seeing these new videos, it has become clear that this is a player controlled action, so you can use it to taunt your living (or dead) opponents whenever you wish. Beyond that, the game plays out as you would expect. You have sixty seconds to prepare before each match, during which time you can select your class and figure out your strategy. The rest is pure mayhem. Our favorite video, embedded above, features the spy infiltrating the enemy base and laying waste to them with his butterfly knife. Everything we've seen of Team Fortress 2 points to good times ahead. Check out three more videos after the break.

Continue reading Loads of new Team Fortress 2 vids

Video: Command & Conquer 3 Kane's Wrath trailer

Announced last month, the first trailer for the Command & Conquer 3 expansion Kane's Wrath has hit the intertubes. The expansion will include new radial menus along with new units, upgrades, and abilities for the various factions in the game. It also includes a brand new game type called "Global Domination" that has been described as a variation on Risk. If the trailer is anything to go by, the expansion will also feature plenty of cut scenes with our favorite villain, Kane. Remember though, the expansion isn't out until next year, so you'd better find some other way to satisfy your cravings for bald villains in the meantime.

Simpsons Medal of Homer video pokes fun at EA

Okay, rarely do gamers ever get excited about games based on movies or television shows. Sure, there is the occasional diamond in the rough, but by and large there is lot more rough out there. To top that, The Simpsons is sitting on more crappy licensed video games (NSFW) than just about any other entertainment property. As such, we're reluctant to get excited about the upcoming console iteration, but damn it, we just can't help it. The latest video from The Simpsons is a spoof of EA's Medal of Honor series, and it looks to be a pretty good one. If The Simpsons can maintain this kind of self-referential, tongue-in-cheek humor and implement even halfway decent gameplay, it could be a lot of fun. Here's hoping.

Eurogamer previews Burnout Paradise


The fancy lads over at Eurogamer gave a good, hard look at Burnout Paradise, and how Criterion is focusing on the "seamless" gameplay. Given the open environment of Paradise City, where we suppose the grass is indeed green and the girls above average, there are plenty of opportunities to expand on the number of things to do beyond racing and crashing.

Aided by the addition of a handbrake, Burners will be able to perform Power Parking, where if you see a space between two parks vehicles that you may be able to squeeze into, and hopefully you can pull it off without hitting the curb or their parked vehicles. It's the little things like that which give us a lot of hope for this iteration of the Burnout series. Check out the full scoop by clicking the "read" link.

Halo Wars and TF2 videos on XBLM


A new day brings some new Xbox Live Marketplace content, and while we don't have any new demos to enjoy, there are some decent videos. The first video is the Halo Wars walk-through that was supposed to go up earlier this week. If you haven't already seen it on the intertubes, it's definitely worth checking out. The second video has also already been seen on the web, though it's probably worth watching in hi-def with some popcorn on the couch. We are talking, of course, about the Team Fortress 2 video featuring the soldier. We said it before and we'll say it again: comedy gold. Download both videos at your earliest convenience, but please, watch responsibly.

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