PIXEL COUNT: Video Game News Roundup for October 26, 2011

A game news article

A happiest of Hump Days, kids! Here we are with another edition of Comics Bulletin and Infinite Ammo's video game news roundup. Whether you are playing Battlefield 3 this week (I guess you aren't if you have an Xbox 360), are sucking and blowing characters while taking their essence in Kirby's Return to Dream Land (that's a weird Dr. Strangelove gag right there) or still trying to finish up Batman: Arkham City (I'm so close to finishing!), it may be time to take a quick break and catch up with all that has been happening the real world of video games. Then again, who is to say that this is the real world? What is real, anyway? Are we real? Is this laptop that I am writing on real? Is that gun that my editor has pointed at my head right now to ensure that this post goes up real? He assures me it is.

Philosophical queries aside, welcome to today's...


Rockstar announces Grand Theft Auto V! And a trailer for it on November 2nd!

Early on yesterday morning (October 25), Rockstar Games put up a countdown clock on their site for a trailer to a then-unannounced game, Grand Theft Auto V!

This announcement pretty much came out of nowhere, but so did the announcement of Grand Theft Auto IV. The clock (which you can see above) is counting down to November 2 at 12pm EST/9am PST. I don't know where you'll be next Wednesday, but I will be waiting at my computer with bated breath...

(bit from Rockstar Games)

Batman: Arkham City sells 2 million copies in its first week!

After shipping out 4.6 million copies of Batman: Arkham City so far (its predecessor having sold only 4.3 million), the Warner Bros. and Rocksteady game has sold over 2 million copies in its first week, making it one of the fastest selling games in industry history.

It most definitely isn't the fastest (remember that the adequate-at-best Call of Duty: Black Ops is still the front runner at 5.6 million on its first day), but it is still a huge accomplishment. And considering that it has been getting overwhelmingly positive reviews, I think it is safe to say that this game is a success. But, if you've played it, you already know that...

(bit from The LA Times)

EA: "Hey, PS3 gamers! Remember that free game we promised you? Well... we lied."

It seems that things aren't looking too great for PlayStation 3 gamers who bought Battlefield 3 either. While yesterday was a day of server crashes on the Xbox 360 version of EA's new shooter, PS3 owners had a bit of disappointment thrown in their direction, as well.

A while back, EA had promised that the PS3 copies of Battlefield 3 would receive a free copy of the pretty great downloadable shooter, Battlefield 1943. It was a pretty great bonus to get people to buy the game on the system that would easily not see the highest numbers of sales or online play. But those who picked up their game yesterday were left with a sense of confusion, for their copy of Battlefield 3 did not include the promised addition of Battlefield 1943.

When people took to Twitter to ask EA, "Where the fuck is my game?!", their response was this:

"In lieu of 1943 being available on disk for PS3 customers, EA has made all BF3 expansions available early to PS3 customers."

Meaning that there will be no Battlefield 3 for you PS3 gamers. But what is really foul is that last month, EA had already announced that the PS3 was going to receive DLC early. Therefore, EA's statement really meant, "You're already getting enough from us. Fuck you!"

EA has recently been trying to re-brand themselves as not being the evil corporation that spits in the face of its consumers. But whenever they attempt to be the good guys, they do shit like this. While I wanted Battlefield 3 to kick Modern Warfare 3's ass this holiday season, I hope Activision does something to win over the PS3 gamers and make EA look like the collective bunch of assholes that they really are. Though, Activision is not really much better, are they?

(bit from Kotaku)

Bethesda has released the PC requirements for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It's too late to start saving up...

November 11 is approaching quick and PC gamers have been wondering whether their rigs can handle what The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim will be dishing out. Here the the specs:

Recommended Specs:
  • Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
  • Processor: Quad-core Intel or AMD CPU
  • 4GB System RAM
  • 6GB free HDD space
  • DirectX 9.0c compatible NVIDIA or AMD ATI video card with 1GB of RAM (Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 or
  • higher; ATI Radeon 4890 or higher).
  • DirectX compatible sound card
  • Internet access for Steam activation

Minimum Specs
  • Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
  • Processor: Dual Core 2.0GHz or equivalent processor
  • 2GB System RAM
  • 6GB free HDD Space
  • Direct X 9.0c compliant video card with 512 MB of RAM
  • DirectX compatible sound card
  • Internet access for Steam activation

PC gamers: I hope you have some extra cash or two healthy kidneys right about now...

(bit from Destructoid)

Nintendo is putting out a couple of DSi XL bundles for the holiday season. Surprise, surprise!

It seems that Nintendo will still be trying to push their awkwardly large DSi XL system this holiday season, rather than the better 3DS system (which is the SAME PRICE).

Two holiday bundles -- one in Midnight Blue and the other in Metallic Rose -- will be packaged with Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! at $169.99. While anyone would recommend that you pick up the superior and genuinely portable system, the 3DS, you could always buy this if you fell the need to waste your money and have the worst case of buyer's remorse you'll have this holiday season.

I personally dislike the DSi XL (as I guess you figured). I see no point in getting a portable game system that is in no way portable. Even the awkwardly shaped DS prime could fit in my pocket (I know because I still have and use it). As someone whose job it is to sell parents video games and systems, I always try to turn them off the DSi XL and I will continue to do so, especially with the 3DS at the same price with better graphics and 3D capabilities.

(bit from Destructoid)

The future of Harmonix's Rock Band franchise and more...

Yesterday, Harmonix (developers of Rock Band and the first Guitar Hero game) released their newest title, Dance Central 2 for the Xbox 360 Kinect. While this new franchise of theirs is very fun, one might wonder what happened to the types of games that put Harmonix on the map. Namely, peripheral-played rhythm games like Rock Band.

When asked whether Rock Band can still be innovated on in its current state, co-founder and CEO Alex Rigopulos said, "In the longer term, looking into next year, we're actually considering fairly fundamental creative reinterpretation of what the Rock Band business is. We're committed to the franchise, but when I think that when we do things with it in the future, it's going to be a pretty dramatic departure from what we've done before." And when asked if they believed that there was something they could do to extend Rock Band beyond their existing fanbase, co-founder and CTO Eran Egozy said, "You might assume we're going to add saxophone or something along those lines, but no, the kind of direction we're planning on taking Rock Band, the kind of innovation we have in mind, is taking it in a different direction, one that's more suitable to the kind of environment we're in, what people are doing now, what they're interested in playing now, versus, say, 2007."

It seems that Harmonix has not just yet abandoned their pinnacle franchise. While Rock Band 3 was a game that was very well received critically, it was not so well received commercially, despite releasing a new instrument peripheral and adding features like the vocal harmony system from The Beatles: Rock Band. Now that the company is once again independent and no longer under the MTV Games big top, I hope that they put out a game that so few of us are expecting, but that we all cannot seem to get enough of. Just like the first Guitar Hero and the first Rock Band.

Also, go ahead and read the entire interview, which is conducted by a former Harmonix employee who left right before the MTV separation. It's a great read!

(bit from Giant Bomb)

Console version of Minecraft to be exclusive to Xbox 360!

Back at E3, it was announced that Mojang would be bringing their hit game -- Minecraft -- to the Xbox 360, but there was no released date or any real details to go along with the announcement.

Now, it was announced on Minecraft creator, Notch's Twitter that the console version of Minecraft will be exclusively coming to Xbox LIVE Arcade in Spring of 2012 and that the game will be playable at this year's MineCon, the Minecraft fan event taking place in Las Vegas on November 18 and 19.

This is definitely a big grab for Microsoft. But considering we know that Minecraft will be coming to Sony's Xperia Play device, it is a wonder how long this exclusivity will run its course.

(bit from IGN)

LittleBIGPlanet 2 to be packaged with the upcoming PlayStation Move bundle? Sweet deal!

If, like me, you have not yet embraced Sony's motion device for the PlayStation 3, you may find a reason to do so this holiday season. SCEA has announced that the new PlayStation Move hardware bundle will include the PlayStation Eye, Move and navigation controllers and the little Special Edition of a BIG game called LittleBIGPlanet 2!

The bundle will be released on November 15, along with the standalone software of LittleBIGPlanet 2 Special Edition. I have been waiting for a bundle that would actually get me to buy the PlayStation Move and was also waiting for the eventual Game of the Year edition of LittleBIGPlanet 2 to be released. Now that they will be released together, I can kill two Sackboys with one stone!

(bit from Siliconera)

Geoffrey the Giraffe planning to stay up late and frag you on November 7!

Toys "R" Us wants to sell your kids their favorite war game with a midnight. The children's toy store has announced plans for some of their stores to open at midnight on November 7 for the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

Normally, this is not news since pretty much every store is doing this. But, seeing as this is a store that is primarily marketed to the prepubescent crowd, this is an odd move indeed.

(bit from Destructoid)

Club Nintendo Japan gives you yet another reason to wish you were in Japan

Not only is Japan's Club Nintendo giving their fans Mario 3DS's and Kid Icarus (see Monday's post), but they are also giving their Club nintendo Platinum members a free Mario pillow!

Why not us, Nintendo? WHY NOT US?!

(bit from Joystiq)


Amazon has the Kinect sensor along with Child of Eden for only $119.99 this week!

Xbox LIVE has the entire download catalog of Dance Central discounted to celebrate the release of Dance Central 2 and the first anniversary of the premiere title until November 5!

Here is Week 2 of Xbox LIVE's Shocktober Sale which include titles like Alan Wake and Costume Quest on the cheap this week!

Xbox LIVE's Deal of the Week has the Dead Rising 2 DLC at half price and $5 off Dead Rising!


Saints Row: The Third shows off the Initiation Station

Here is a great ad for Saints Row: The Third's character customization tool called the Initiation Station. I'm much too excited for this game...

Trailer for Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor shows off how to play the game!

When Capcom announced that the sequel to their expensive peripheral game on the Xbox prime, Steel Battalion, was going to be a Kinect -controlled title, many of us were worried. How can you substitute that gargantuan controller from the last title with the Kinect. Well, it will be a mixture of both Kinect and your Xbox 360 controller. I may just get this game because I have to see how this will be done.

Nightwing DLC Trailer for Batman: Arkham City!

This DLC looks like it will be AWESOME!

Adam Sessler talks about giving reviews of art a numerical score

After giving Uncharted 3 a 4 out of 5 on G4tv.com, the Internet fanboys flipped out and started trashing Adam Sessler, despite none of them having played the damn game. Because of this, this week's Sessler's Soapbox focuses on how giving a numerical score to any form of artistic work is "intellectually deficient". As someone who has to assign comic books (and soon video games) numerical scores here on Comics Bulletin, I could not agree more. To all those reading, read the actual review and ignore those numbers. Ignore Metacritic. Ignore all those silly score aggregators. The individual's reasons are never fully represented there in whatever number appears on the page. Read the review!

Here is Sessler's review that broke the interweb and got him a lot of grief.

Until Friday, kids...




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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