After a contentious six-year relationship, Electronic Arts has sold off its entire ownership interest in Ubisoft, according to news accounts Tuesday.
According to Dow Jones Newswires, which first reported on the sale, Electronic Arts sold its stake in Ubisoft--14.8 percent of the company--to unidentified investors. The major game developer declined to say how much it sold its stake for, Dow Jones reported.
The rumors of a $149 price tag for Microsoft's Kinect accessory for the Xbox 360 were true.
Microsoft on Tuesday finally announced the pricing for both a standalone Kinect bundle, which will ship with the Kinect hardware and the Kinect Adventures game for $149, as well as a bundle of the Xbox 360 hardware, a Kinect unit, and Kinect Adventures for $299.
If you just can't wait to see how Microsoft Kinect works, be sure to run down to select Macy's stores nationwide over the next few months to try it out.
According to the retail company, it will be giving customers the chance to "test drive" its motion-gaming platform at 13 retail outlets around the U.S. on Thursdays through Sundays from now through September 30. The hours of operation are noon to 8 p.m. local time Thursday through Saturday, and noon to 6 p.m. local time on Sunday.
If you live outside of your mom's basement (suckers!) and aren't transfixed by the minutia of gaming news, you may have missed the word that Microsoft just dropped a new Xbox 360. It's sleeker, cheaper, and more wireless-ish than its predecessors. The PS3 got slimmer not so long ago, and we can only assume the Wii will get more wee in the near future (sorry, had to).
But despite the leading consoles shrinking in size and price, some game developers, notably BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk, think consoles' days of leading the video game market are numbered. And … Read more
BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk had some rather interesting things to say this week about the future of the gaming business.
Zeschuk, whose company has created major console hits like Mass Effect 2, said that going forward, the video game industry won't rely so heavily on the console market. In fact, he believes consoles could be a relic of the past as more players turn to portable devices to get their game on.
"The future isn't necessarily on console," Zeschuk said at the Develop Conference, an event for European game developers. "That's the past. It'… Read more
PopCap Games on Thursday announced that it's bringing a port of its popular Zuma series to social network Facebook.
The game, which is called Zuma Blitz, will follow a similar format to PopCap's other popular Facebook title, Bejeweled Blitz, giving players just a minute to get the highest score possible. Like Bejeweled Blitz, it too will make use of Facebook's credits system with a feature the company is calling "Treasure Chest"--an in-game store that lets players buy power-ups using real-world money. The game will also feature a weekly tournament system, and integration with a … Read more
I was in Japan last week for a number of meetings related to brand development and disruptive software and found myself less intrigued by the overwhelming array of Japanese mobile phones and more interested in the handheld game consoles from Nintendo and others.
It's not that there aren't a plethora of mobile phones that have all kinds of cool features, but that since generally those phones can't be used in the U.S. (and most don't offer English interfaces) the game consoles became a lot more interesting.
Microsoft's Kinect motion-gaming device could generate $1 billion for the company in just its first year, an analyst said in a research note.
Sandeep Aggarwal of Caris & Co. wrote Monday that Kinect could help the industrywide gaming market generate $2 billion in its first year, with Microsoft itself snagging at least half the money.
How Aggarwal calculated revenue generation is significant. He did not focus solely on the device, which is expected to sell for $149 when it launches later this year. He included all related revenue for the overall gaming industry, including sales of individual games.
Game developer Blizzard has backed down on a plan to require users of its official online forums to register with real names, just days after announcing the move.
The shift, announced Friday in a message posted to the company's forums, followed a firestorm of criticism from users expressing privacy concerns.
"We've been constantly monitoring the feedback you've given us, as well as internally discussing your concerns about the use of real names on our forums," Mike Morhaime, CEO and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment, wrote in the Friday post. "As a result of those discussions, we've decided at this time that real names will not be required for posting on official Blizzard forums."
Morhaime stressed that the real-name requirement was not to be confused with the optional in-game Real ID system that's now live with World of Warcraft and launching soon with StarCraft II. That system is a voluntary, optional level of identity designed to keep players connected even outside of games with features such as cross-game and cross-realm chat and real names on friends lists.
Forum users met Morhaime's announcement with hundreds of pages of messages, many of them thanking Blizzard ("Fantastic. Thanks for restoring my faith in you guys," read one post typical of the mood on the boards. Read another: "The little guy wins!").
Some, however, tempered their relief with caution. "Although I certainly am grateful for the announcement, I...am concerned about the use of 'At This Time,'" wrote another poster. "This is definitely code for "At some point, we may consider trying again." … Read more
Blizzard boasts one of the largest, most engaged user communities of any game developer in the world. The benefits of such a following are obvious, but the downside becomes similarly stark when the company runs afoul of its user base.
The company on Tuesday unveiled its new Real ID system, a service that allows friends to easily follow each other's activities in Blizzard games like World of Warcraft. It also introduces cross-game chat and social-networking features that let users see not just their friends, but also their friends' friends.
However, Blizzard is requiring users to register for the service … Read more