Some of you may remember the Gizmondo, a portable gaming console announced in 2005 that was positioned as a competitor to the Sony PSP and Nintendo DS. Tiger Telematics, the company which produced it, was headed by a couple of Swedes who eventually left the firm just before it went bankrupt in early 2006. It's an incredible tale involving a crashed Ferrari Enzo, dealings with the Mafia, and millions of dollars of investor funds going down the drain.
There may yet be a day when the ubiquitous treadmill is replaced by the Wii at the gym, and the first step could very well be on the Wii Fit. The machine, as you'll recall, senses the movement of your entire body using a device that resembles a scale. And, like a scale, it can insult you by breaking if you weigh too much.
AMD's new Radeon HD 3400 and 3600 graphics cards represent the complete opposite end of the spectrum from the 3870 X2 whose benchmark results and technical details we're not allowed to discuss until later. Where the 3870 X2 is...something else, the 3400 and the 3600 sit firmly on the budget side of the aisle.
The 3400 will feature card variants ranging from $50 to $65 or so, and the 3600's will go from $80 to $100. Neither version will deliver top-line 3D performance, but they will each give you a step up in speed over an … Read more
Where are these people getting their copies of Mass Effect? I've seen several accounts of the game, and they seem to be completely divorced from the title I played for hours and hours. While I enjoyed a well-written, mature science-fiction action-RPG, it seems that radio pundit and columnist Kevin McCullough and FOX News anchor Martha MacCallum played an explicit interactive sex simulator.
This picked up steam a week ago, when McCullough claimed in a Townhall.com column that Mass Effect offered "customizable sodomy." I'm not quite sure what "customizable sodomy" is, and can only … Read more
The good people over at EA were able to send us a copy of Burnout Paradise an entire week before its release. While we're by no means completely through the game, we've gotten a great idea of what the game is all about, how it works, how it doesn't, and what you can expect.
The biggest news about the latest iteration of Burnout is the new open-world environment you're introduced to just seconds after you begin the game. Known as Paradise City, the town is loaded with destructible areas, jumps, billboards, and hidden paths. In addition, the team at Criterion (the British development house that continues to shepherd the series for publisher Electronic Arts) has decided to drop all menus and car classes in favor of a system that allows you begin an event just by pulling up to various intersections around town. This system works well, but one major drawback is that you won't be able to restart an event via the Pause menu. No, you'll have to return to the intersection at which you began in order to retry the same event. We've noticed ourselves not even worrying about which event goes where, and just beginning a new event at the next available crossroad.
Burnout Paradise is all about leveling up your license,… Read more
Last week, we brought you new details on two games from the Ubisoft press event held in New York City--Rainbow Six Vegas 2 and Far Cry 2. Today we wrap up our coverage with a look at Tom Clancy's EndWar, a new franchise from the publisher.
At first glance, we were quite skeptical of a real-time-strategy game on a console. However, after about two minutes of watching one of the developers play the game using only his voice, we were convinced that the team at Ubisoft Shanghai might be on to something here.
Let us clarify the whole voice control situation---there was barely any manual controlling needing to be done besides aiming with a crosshair and adjusting the camera angle.… Read more
We saw a story on ATI's new Radeon HD 3870 X2 3D graphics card and its delayed launch on the Inquirer this morning before we got into the office. Once we got into the office we were able to confirm the situation for ourselves. The nondisclosure agreement we signed precludes us from revealing what it is we're unable to confirm, exactly. Instead, we'll simply say that the shifty date-maneuvering discussed in the Inquirer piece seems to happen more often than not with the graphics and CPU vendors and their product releases.
Ubisoft held the company's latest press event in New York this week, and we were lucky enough to get in some time with a few highly anticipated new games coming from the publisher this year. Yesterday, Will Greenwald told you about Far Cry 2, with its Crysis-like physics and effects. Today, we'll shed some light on Rainbow Six Vegas 2.
Just when we thought we had enough of Las Vegas (CES can do that to a man), Ubisoft throws us right back into the mix of things in Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2. While the first Vegas had us running through casinos and garage lots at night, Vegas 2 takes place more during the daylight hours as you'll be seeing back alleys and the grittier side of the town. Rather than giving us an "add-on" to the first title, the team at Ubisoft Montreal has built a game worthy of being labeled as an official sequel. So rest assured, this is certainly not Rainbow Six Vegas: Out of Cash.… Read more
There are all kinds of virtual worlds these days: Those for kids, for adults, centered around fantasy battles, and even those centered on space.
But no one has a better hold on space than NASA, and that agency is now considering creating its own virtual world, according to the BBC.
"The virtual world would be aimed at students and would 'simulate real NASA engineering and science missions,'" the BBC wrote, adding that the space agency has put out requests for vendors interested in producing the virtual world.
The idea behind the so-called massively multiplayer online game would be … Read more
There's a contradiction in our approach to kids and electronic media: we want parents to supervise their kids and guide their appropriate use of games and media, and at the same time we talk about kids being "digital natives" who understand the gaming world much better than many parents do.
Let's face it, kids can spend hours talking to each other about the latest gadget or video game, and it is a challenge for parents to catch up. Most video game reviews discuss a game from the player's point of view without giving parents the details they need to judge whether a particular game is appropriate for their child. (I frequently encounter the same problem with movie reviews for kids' films. I am usually not that concerned about how "good" a kids' movie is, but I want to know the details behind a movie's PG-13 rating. Yet that information is rarely provided.)
A new Web site called WhatTheyPlay.com fills in this information gap. The site launched in November and already features a well-populated catalog of game reviews. Now parents can get the details beyond ESRB ratings, with objective reviews and user comments, to decide for themselves whether they want to bring a game home for their family.… Read more