PIXEL COUNT: Video Game News Roundup for December 7th, 2011

A game news article


Happy Hump Day, gamers! I hope you are all getting through the holiday season. The ridiculous traffic, the long lines at Wal-Mart when you are just there to buy socks and the unpleasant people who leave their holes just to yell at everyone else during a season that The Peanuts are known for praising. How can you be so angry when "Christmastime is Here" is playing?!


But, let's get to the video game news with Comics Bulletin's own...











Shigeru Miyamoto Stepping Down From Current Position at Nintendo

UPDATED: Shigeru Miyamoto Not Going Anywhere at Nintendo!

UPDATE: WIRED had reported that Miyamoto was stepping down as the head of the game design department at Nintendo. IGN has now confirmed that this is all bunk.


Nintendo's official statement:


"Video game designer Shigeru Miyamoto's role at Nintendo is not changing. He will continue to be a driving force in Nintendo's development efforts. In discussing his priorities at Nintendo in a media interview, Mr. Miyamoto explained how he is encouraging the younger developers at the company to take more initiative and responsibility for developing software. He attempted to convey his priorities moving forward, inclusive of overseeing all video game development and ensuring the quality of all products. Mr. Miyamoto also discussed his desire to pursue fresh ideas and experiences of the kind that sparked his initial interest in video games."


Bad WIRED for scaring everyone!



One of the industry's biggest giants and the creator of such games as Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda has announced that he is stepping down as Nintendo's head of game design to work on smaller projects that will not take as long to complete.


Miyamoto is now 59-years-old and is choosing to leave the big games that have a five year development time to the younger gamers. He wants to start development on much smaller games that he could either work on with a small team or by himself. He plans to start work on a new project in 2012 and be able to show the game off within a year.


As someone whose first video game was Super Mario Bros. on my NES, Miyamoto-san has been a huge influence on my development as both a gamer and an appreciator of all forms of interactive media. To hear that the next Mario or Zelda title will not have his signature style attached to it is something that I was not planning on hearing for many, many more years. While this could be seen as interesting news that Miyamoto will most likely be working on new intellectual property, it is sad to think that we will not see him out there at the forefront of Nintendo's in-house design department or coming out at E3 and getting everyone excited for what he has for us this time.


(bit from WIRED)


(UPDATE bit from IGN)



Executive Producer of The Last Guardian Leaves the Game and Sony

Last week, it was reported that Fumito Ueda -- creator of Ico, Shadow of the Colossus and the upcoming The Last Guardian -- was rumored to be leaving Sony and Team Ico and working on the rest of The Last Guardian in a freelance capacity. Well, it seems that someone else has jumped ship.


Yoshifusa Hayama, vice president at Sony Computer Entertainment and executive producer of The Last Guardian has just left Sony and joined Bossa Studios as creative director (which, for some reason, seems like quite a step down from his last job; vice president to creative director).


Bossa Studios is a social game studio that plans to bring out a full 3D game next year, which Hayama will be working on.


I don't know what is happening with this game! Team Ico has a history of making remarkable titles, so why is everyone heading for the hills? This is the kind of stuff you hear about before a game enters development hell. Let's hope this stops...


(bit from Eurogamer)



Nintendo 3DS Firmware Update Now Released and Gives Us 3D Video Recording!

The latest firmware update to Nintendo's little 3D powerhouse, the 3DS, has just received its latest firmware update that adds more games to the Street Pass Mii Plaza and allows you to transfer downloaded titles to another system. Oh yeah, and it lets you now record videos is 3D!


Considering the 3DS is now $169, this probably makes it the most affordable 3D camcorder out there. It also makes it the only one where you can also play The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.


(bit from Siliconera)



Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD Gets a Release Date!


One of my favorite games of last generation was Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath, a title that hit the original Xbox in early 2005 (a.k.a. the end of the line for Microsoft's first game console before its successor hit). To this day, I have not seen a game that has moved so fluidly between third-person and first-person gameplay, with each one bringing a something completely different to how one plays the game. It was such a beautiful, fun and largely overlooked game. At least Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee had the good fortune of being a launch title to the Xbox prime. No one (but me) picked this game up. Considering how fantastic it is, it was a damn shame.


But the good folks at Just Add Water have been working on an HD re-release of Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath for next-gen systems for a while now and has announced a release date for the PSN release: December 27 for $15.


This game has had a second life with The Oddboxx on Steam and I hope that many more get to discover it on PSN. I know that the developer has been trying to get it released on Xbox LIVE Arcade, as well. But, for some reason, Microsoft is not budging. Why would a digital platform not want to put a digital game onto their platform? Who cares? Microsoft always has a stick up their ass about stuff like this. Remember when they didn't want Portal 2 to have Steam-access on their version? That was the first time I chose to pick up a first-person shooter for the PlayStation 3 over the Xbox 360. Sometimes, Microsoft just chooses to be a bunch of assholes.


That said, if you have a PlayStation 3, pick this up! You will not be disappointed.


(bit from GameSpot)





Activision Releases New Details on the Upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man Tie-In Game

It was announced a little while back that Beenox, developer of the wonderful Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions and the not-so-wonderful Spider-Man: Edge of Time, would be handling development of The Amazing Spider-Man tie-in game, but not much else was said. We now know some details.


The game will be released in July -- alongside the film -- and will bring Spidey back to an open-world New York City! It is written by Seamus Kevin Fahey (of Battlestar Galactica and Spartacus: Gods of the Arena fame) and will take place as an epilogue to the film. Most tie-in games are usually tied directly into the film or are a different story happening alongside (like the god-awful Enter the Matrix). Having this game take place after is a welcome incentive for fans of the film and gamers alike to pick it up.


A trailer for the title will premiere on this Saturday's Video Game Awards on Spike TV.


(bit from Edge)



Epic Games' Tim Seeley to be Inducted into AIAS's Hall of Fame!


The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences has announced that Epic Games' founder and CEO, Tim Seeley, will be the 16th inductee into their Hall of Fame.


The award will be presented on February 9 in Las Vegas by Epic Games VP, Mark Rein.


Kudos to the man that gave us Unreal Tournament and chainsaws built into guns!


(bit from Game Informer)



Valve Introduces Steam Coupons


Steam is known for its infamous sales. Now, they are giving developers of small titles a way to offer their games to only a selection of Steam users, rather than the whole service: Steam Coupons.


The virtual coupons will be single-use and only available to the game designated by the coupon itself. The coupons themselves will be stored in the users' Steam Inventory and will be able to be traded among the Steam community.


This option is much better for small, indie developers, allowing them a way to discount their game to only a certain group of gamers rather than having a sale that could have too many people take advantage, thus losing money. This way, they can market a game like Bastion to gamers that usually only play MMOs on Steam. That way, those who have shown an interest in a game like Bastion would not get the discount, since they are probably going to pay full price regardless.


I like the idea and it makes Steam even better for the developers that are on it.


(bit from Gamasutra)



Alec Baldwin Blames Words With Friends For Getting Kicked Off an Airplane


Maybe video game addiction IS a real thing. Look at Alec Baldwin. The man was playing Words With Friends on his iPhone and was kicked off after being asked to turn the phone off.


Now this story has been going crazy all over the news all day, but I just wanted to point out that it was a video game that had caused this Controversy of the Week.


The man was even tweeting the entire thing on his Twitter account, which has since been shut down.


Oh, Alec Baldwin. What are we going to do with you?


(bit from Video Gamer)








Steam has Bastion for $4.99 and the game along with its soundtrack for $8.32 until 1pm EST tomorrow (Thursday, 12/8)!

Xbox LIVE Arcade has Prince of Persia Classic and Lara Croft: Guardian of Light for 50% off this week!

Amazon has a Buy One, Get One 50% Off Sale on select games and accessories this week!

Toys R Us has a Buy One, Get One 50% Off Sale on ALL games and video game accessories (in store and online) this week!








Teaser for The Amazing Spider-Man Game... Trailer



Yes, a teaser for a trailer. The Video Game Awards need to just happen already!



Trailer: Angry Birds: The (Unofficial) Movie



Yup, someone made this...










Child's PlayThe last thing I want to let you all know is that the Child's Play charity is still taking donations for the sick kids that need a bit of a holiday distraction.


Child's Play -- from the creators of the Penny Arcade webcomic -- is a charity dedicated to improving the lives of sick and hospitalized children with video games and toys in over 70 hospitals around the world. Since 2003, millions of dollars have been donated and used to help these kids have fun rather than just sit in a hospital room.


Child's Play works in two way: You can click on a hospital on the Child's Play donation page and pick a gift to donate from the wish list or make a cash donation through PayPal -- which Child's Play uses to buy video games, consoles, toys, books and other fun stuff for kids throughout the year.


It is a great cause and if you would care to donate, please go to the site and make a kid a little bit happier this holiday season.


Thank you.




Until tomorrow...










Nick Boisson grew up on television, Woody Allen, video games, Hardy Boys mysteries and DC comic books, with the occasional Spider-Man issue thrown in for good measure. He currently roams the rainy streets of Miami, Florida, looking for a nice tie, a woman that gets him, and the windbreaker he lost when he was eight. He sometimes writes things down on Twitter as @nitroslick.



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