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Posts with tag spring-showcase-08

Wait, did Cliffy confirm GoW2 four player co-op? [update 2]

Update 2: As much as we'd like to think Cliffy was referring to four player co-op, the evidence is proving otherwise. For the time being, let's all let go of our four player co-op dreams until Epic talks deets.

Update:
It has come to our attention that Cliffy may have actually said "multiple difficulty settings FOR co-op players", meaning different difficulty levels for all co-op players and not confirmation of four player co-op. Though, there is a noticeable vocal pause between "settings" and "four" or "for". Meh, make your own judgment and be just as confused as everyone else.

Gears of War 2 multiplayer details were noticeably lacking at this year's Spring Showcase, as Microsoft sticks to their well thought out marketing plan by feeding eager fanboys nuggets of GoW2 info piece by piece . But sometimes information leaks prematurely from loose lips, loose Cliffy B lips that make us believe that we can count on four player Gears of War 2 co-op come November.

Why do we speculate four player Gears 2 co-op? Well, because we think Cliffy B actually let slip the secret in a recent interview with Gamespot. You'll have to click towards the jump to watch the video interview (stupid Gamespot embedding works like crud), fast forward to about 4:12 and listen carefully to what Cliffy says. From what we can tell, it sounds like Cliffy says "the co-op is drop in, drop out, multiple difficulty settings, four co-op players, uhh, much more multiplayer modes." Four co-op players? Hmm, he either confirmed GoW2's four player co-op secret or said something about "more co-op players". Either way, we're interested in hearing what's the real word.

[Via XboxFocus]

Shane Kim talks motion control rumors and more

At Microsoft's Spring Showcase, Eurogamer got some face time with Microsoft Game Studios VP (and PR jedi) Shane Kim. As one might expect, they took the opportunity to ask Kim about Microsoft's upcoming lineup, Sony's claimed victory in Europe, and, of course, Grand Theft Auto IV. Regarding the lineup, Kim said that 2008 will be "another landmark year" for Microsoft thanks to a range of exclusive titles like Gears of War 2, Fable 2, Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, and others.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the interview, Kim spoke to the rumors about Microsoft's secret motion controller development. When asked directly about the rumors, Kim gave the typical no comment response, but also noted, "I do think that would be a mistake, if we just tried to come out and copy what Nintendo has done. What Nintendo has done has worked well for them, but we have to think about what our innovation aspect is going to be." Let's focus on the word "just" and the phrase "is going to be" for a moment. "Just" implies that Microsoft plans to do more than Nintendo has done with control methods, while "is going to be" implies that Microsoft is definitely up to something. Just what that is remains a mystery. Is it Lips, Newton, or something else?

Check out Eurogamer for the full interview.

Epic to set limits on GoW2 achievement progress

During their interview with Cliffy B, the guys over at CVG learned an interesting Gears of War 2 achievement fact that will probably make "achievement whores" a bit furious. Scratch that, it will make achievement whores furious.

As it's currently planned, Epic will be "throttling" GoW2's achievements by limiting how much unlocking progress can be made per game or round. Cliffy gave an example of the unlocking system by saying that "if you're going for headshots, you get one headshot that counts and any other headshots won't count towards your Achievement" which is being done "so players don't just play to get headshots the entire round just to get Achievements." It's an interesting idea, but one we aren't sure we (or any achievement addicts for that matter) fully embrace.

[Thanks, shay07]

Spring Showcase no shows: Halo Wars and Alan Wake


Now that the onslaught of Spring Showcase information has mostly subsided (we've still got some hands-on impressions on the way), we have some time to reflect. There were many games on display at the Spring Showcase, which makes the absence of two of Microsoft's premiere titles stand out. The games about which we speak are Alan Wake and Halo Wars. While Alan Wake is perhaps less anticipated (thanks to its seemingly eternal development schedule and its status as a new IP), it's pretty strange that a high profile title like Halo Wars was absent. According to our friends at Joystiq, who spoke to Microsoft on the matter, the Spring Showcase wasn't considered the proper venue for the two games.

It's kind of hard to believe that an event designed around letting journalists try their collective hand at all the latest games isn't the right venue for these games (or any game, really). We suppose it's fair to say that Alan Wake -- a survival horror game -- might require more intimacy to appreciate, but Halo Wars? Perhaps Microsoft thought journos wouldn't be able to grasp the controls in the 30-45 minutes of playtime they were allowed.

Whatever the reason behind the decision to leave out two of Microsoft Games Studios' biggest titles from the Spring Showcase, we hope we'll see something soon. And we really hope that their absence doesn't portend any delays.

Video: Birds sing and swords swing in Fable 2


Cleaning up after a long day of Spring Showcase coverage, we discovered a short yet sweet Fable 2 video burried under a box of Twinkies. A Twinkie fate that was brought upon the video due to yesterday's news madness. So, being the good bloggers we believe ourselves to be, we embedded the latest Fable 2 footage above for your viewing enjoyment and finished off the box of Twinkies for good measure. Like we said, it's a short vid, but it does a pretty solid job at showcasing some of Fable 2's enivornents, natural sites and concludes with an unlucky chap getting knocked into a well. It's priceless!

Dyack: 'Strong chance' of Eternal Darkness sequel


Alright, this isn't officially Xbox 360 news, but given Silicon Knights' current relationship with Microsoft, we're fairly confident that it could be. Speaking to TVG at Microsoft's Spring Showcase, Silicon Knights head Dennis Dyack had some hopeful things to say regarding an Eternal Darkness sequel. After noting that Silicon Knights doesn't want to be "pigeon-holed" into any specific genres, he admitted, "There's a strong chance we'll return to it, but there's no announcements yet." This marks the best news we've heard about a possible sequel since 2006. That joyous yet vaguely disturbing sound you just heard was a worldwide nerd-splosion of the highest order.

[Via Joystiq]

CliffyB: No party system in GOW2 would be "a pretty big f*ckup"


Joystiq managed to grab a second of Cliff Bleszinski's time at Microsoft's Spring Showcase yesterday (seems like everyone did). Naturally, the discussion centered around Epic's bigger, badder, more badass sequel to Gears of War, which they have wisely dubbed Gears of War 2. Lots of things are discussed in the interview, ranging from merchandising to how Gears of War pacing will work with hundreds of enemies on screen. The biggest tidbit in the interview, however, centers around the game's online functionality. When asked whether or not Gears of War 2 will feature a party system, Cliffy responded, "I think that if we were not to have a feature like that, it would probably be a pretty big fuckup."

Yeah, that should be enough to pique your interest. Head over to Joystiq for the full interview.

X3F Impressions - Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts


Alright fanboys, time to get the difficult news out of the way first. Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts is not much like its predecessors at all. The main gameplay focus is still on platforming, only it's now platforming with vehicles too. Like most platformers, the specific objectives you have to complete are slightly varied, but are mostly different takes on collecting items.

To do so, you'll have a massive tool kit at your fingertips. The vehicles seen in the gallery can all be broken down into various pieces, and a large portion of the gameplay stems from mixing and matching vehicle parts to suit the task at hand. Or y'know, to just suit messing around with infinitely customizable vehicles in a physics playground. That playground can be taken online as well, and the game's multiplayer is very physics-focused and custom-content heavy.

Hit the break for more on Banjo.

Continue reading X3F Impressions - Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts

Cliffy: GoW2 has best cover system ever, trilogy talk

Adding to what we've already learned about GoW2 (thanks to the media's poking and prodding of Cliffy B), the Eurogamer crew got the chance to chat with Cliffy who was more than happy to gloat about the newly reworked cover system in Gears 2 and even talked about the possibility of doing a trilogy.

As far as cover is concerned, Cliffy admitted that, in the original Gears,"10 percent of the time, players were going into cover when they didn't want to" so they reworked by doing "some of those [cover system] tweaks in a patch for Gears 1, we iterated on them for Gears PC, and now we're bringing it full circle for Gears 2." Simply said, GoW2 will feature what Cliffy calls the "the best cover system ever seen in the videogame industry". Can you say oh-freakin-yeah! Finally, when talking about a sequel to the upcoming sequel, Cliffy wanted to make it clear that he "never announced a [Gears of War] trilogy" no matter what any journalist says, but also wanted everyone to know that if "Gears 2 has a wonderful ship-in, if gamers buy it, then we'll consider a sequel." Confirmed. We get a trilogy if 3 million GoW2 units ship ... start pre-ordering NOW!

GOW2 details: multiplayer, vehicles, Carmine's back!

In a recent interview with GameTrailers at Microsoft's Spring Showcase event, Gears of War 2 maestro Cliff Bleszinski dropped a ton of details regarding Marcus Fenix's second outing. Cliffy had plenty to talk about, including new details on Gears of War 2 multiplayer, storyline, vehicles, and the return of a certain fan-favorite character. Here's a quick rundown of exactly what CliffyB had to say:
  • Gears 2 will feature 5-on-5 multiplayer with more modes and more maps out of the box than Gears 1. Online functionality wasn't detailed, but Cliffy promises it will be "very competitive with other titles in this space." Dare we hope for a Halo-inspired party system?
  • About executions:
    • Chainsaw duels can end in a draw, but only occasionally.
    • The curb stomp is back
    • Players are no longer invulnerable when performing executions
    • Once a duel is over, the actual chainsawing is faster, making the entire duel last about as long as a normal chainsaw kill.
  • Players who are down but not out can now attempt to crawl away, tapping the A button to crawl faster.
  • The game will have "buckets and buckets" of blood. For example, Marcus will leave trails of blood on a wall while taking cover after being injured. "Meat shields" (i.e. hostages) will also drip blood as they are dragged around.
  • Players will be able to drive the new Centaur tank, which is something like a cross between a tank and a monster truck (we think it's briefly in the video at around 3:50)
  • Carmine (most famous for being on the receiving end of a headshot in the first Gears) will return ... somehow.

X3F Impressions - Penny Arcade Adventures


While the visual look of the game has been well known for some time now, the details of the long winded Penny Arcade: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness have been a bit sketchy. Admittedly, we are Penny Arcade fans, but we were skeptical of the game, mostly because we didn't know of what it consisted. Turns out the game is a meld of Japanese RPG and old-school adventure.

The exploration, battle setup, and nested menus are straight out of traditional RPGs, but the cutscenes (if they can be called such) consist of a partly animated Penny Arcade comic. Albeit a Penny Arcade comic set in (*checks press release*) the deranged 1920's universe of New Arcadia. While the RPG elements have been updated for the times and are designed not be be slow, there isn't much here to hold you if you don't enjoy the Penny Arcade style of writing and humor. If you like the writing and are looking for something a little deeper and more involved, but just as funny and wrapped in a good RPG, give this a shot.

More details and impressions after the break.

Continue reading X3F Impressions - Penny Arcade Adventures

A pair of Spring Showcase Alone in the Dark videos

Of all the things that could have been showcased for Alone in the Dark at Microsoft's Spring Showcase, we're not sure we would have picked the two sequences featured in these videos. Alone in the Dark is a survival horror game, right? As such, one would expect to be treated to sequences of surviving horrifying situations. Speaking literally, we suppose these videos do just that, but we were expecting some ghosts, monsters, a mutant insect, something. What we get is some ledge-grabbing platforming and a car escape sequence. Don't get us wrong, it doesn't look bad -- in fact, these are things you don't see in many other survival horror games -- but we're just waiting to see some gameplay that lives up to the atmosphere created by the cinematic trailers that have been released.

Who knows, maybe we'll get lucky and see the promised demo before the week is out. We're really hoping it will make believers out of us. We want to believe.

Continue reading A pair of Spring Showcase Alone in the Dark videos

Hey, what happened to those 'Lips'?

Don't think we already forgot about those mysterious "Lips" that were supposed to be unveiled as part of today's Spring Showcase announcement. But, as you are well aware, there has been absolutely zero "Lip" talk coming from Microsoft's, erm ... lips. Is it a new game? Is it a new voice accessory? We aren't sure, but hopefully an explanation will still be coming sometime today. Though, as the minutes tick by, we're beginning to think that "Lips" is no longer a Gamer's Day announcement and may now be E3 talk.

New Banjo 3 details: co-op and online play


More Spring Showcase goodness as we continue to dig through the assets provided by Microsoft. Perusing the Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts fact sheet, we've uncovered a few tasty bits of info. First and foremost, the game will feature multiplayer modes. Said modes will be available online, though the fact sheet is unclear if they will be offline capable as well. Given that Rare's other big game for 2008, Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise, features offline multiplayer, we'd say it will probably be available in Nuts and Bolts as well. Cooperative multiplayer is listed as well, though the label "cooperative challenges" makes us think that co-op through the single-player campaign is probably out.

Oh, and in case you'd rather not futz with the do-it-yourself vehicle creation (you old fuddy-duddy, you), the fact sheet assures gamers that many pre-built vehicles are available. The fact sheet also refers to the vehicle creation as user created content. Could this mean that players will be able to trade their vehicle designs? Guess we'll have to wait and see.

Gallery: Banjo-Kazooie 3

Loads of new Ninja Gaiden II images


click to enlarge

Good lord. So many Ninja Gaiden II images. Adding more the already huge pile of Spring Showcase media, we bring you 40 new images of Ninja Gaiden II. We've got character renders. We've got concept art. We've got new screenshots. Hell, we even have special screenshots with no blood (good thinking on that one Microsoft). Please, dive into the gallery below. Just dive right in. Caress each image lovingly with your eyes. Your eyes work very hard, and they deserve the treat.

Gallery: Ninja Gaiden II (Gamers' Day 2008)

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