Weekly Byte for 6/28/2010

New Releases

Tuesday 6/29

  • All Points Bulliten – $49.99 – The MMO is finally here!
  • ARMA II : Operation Arrowhead – $39.99 Stand-alone Expansion
  • Fallen Earth : Blood Sports – $29.99 – Basically, a retail version of the MMO with the newly patched Blood Sports content
  • LEGO Harry Potter : Years 1-4 – $29.99
  • Singularity – $49.99 – Yes, it’s dropping with no PR, could that be bad?
  • Sniper : Ghost Warrior – $29.99

News Bytes

Newer Digital Distribution site, Beamdog, has added an MDK2 HD remix into it’s releases, with a Wii release also scheduled soon. MDK was a classic Bioware PC franchise, unlike much seen at that time-or now, for that matter.  The player was an alien sniper/assassin, and the games pushed the limits of what shooters did at that time frame, it’s a great pickup, and even better to hear it’s getting the HD treatment, not sure I can recommend the WiiWare version, depending on the controls.  Sorry fanboys, the game was a PC title, originally, I would still recommend it for PC since Beamdog looks very promising and it’s a steal at $9.99.

China has been know as an MMO paradise, but new regulations may be changing that image. New regulations are cracking down hard on what minors are allowed to be exposed to, but also curious is a new rule not allowing them to take part in microtransactions.  Also limiting microtransactions is another new law that states in-game items cannot be sold for actual money any longer, but must only be paid for by some type of in-game currency.  I had thought the free MMO supported by in game transactions was a staple in China, but I guess that model is being frowned upon from this point on.  I’d be curious to see how this affects the flood of free MMO’s in that region-will they start charging monthly fees or be forced out by these laws?  Guess it doesn’t matter if you are ‘For The Horde’ or ‘For The Alliance’, as long as you are in China, you best not sell those characters and gear you worked so hard to find, for real cash!

More interesting news for online gamers, Starcraft II will have limited LAN access? Apparently, Blizzard has said they will patch the game after launch to allow LAN play for tournament purposes.  Pardon me if I don’t Zerg rush to praise them for this.  They have only stated that this will allow LAN support for tournaments, not for personal use, and it’s a paltry substitution, if I may say so.  Sure it’s good news for the hardcore Starcraft competitors, but it’s not going to allow the viral success of the first game’s multiplayer respawn feature.  Don’t get me wrong, I am anxiously awaiting the single-player game, but am still very upset at the functionality being stripped from the game.  I still need to be convinced that Blizzard is not cutting their thorax off to spite their hive with this move.

If MDK coming back didn’t grab you, how about a walk in the fantasy realm of King’s Quest? Thankfully, Activision has backed down from blocking the publishing of the Phoenix Online Studio’s project, taking player’s back to the King’s Quest realm with episodic content. Originally, the project was on hiatus, thanks to a cease and desist order from Activision, the current license holder.  In a welcome change of events, Activision has rescinded that order and the project is back up, full throttle.  The first episode, The Silver Lining, will be out July 10th, no details on following episodes yet.  So far the screenshots look pretty promising, making this one to watch for the summer.  Definitely keep your eyes here for more news with this game, I am very much looking forward to seeing how POS handles the franchise, and until then visit their site here for more details!

Been out of Counter-Strike for a while? It might be time to come back with the new revamp from the latest Counter-Strike : Source update, already out.  I’ve heard this update touted as making a new game completely obsolete with all the new features brought to the table.  The update adds 144 achievements, a wealth of stat-tracking features, not available before scoreboard and death camera features and that’s just the cosmetic add-ons!  The game has been truly revamped and brought into graphics and Source engine updates that were much needed, go boot it up, get your gear and start fragging to see for yourself!

Deals

I can’t list all of the deals here, mostly because the majority of them are changing daily, but Steam is having a HUGE July 4th sale that will host daily deals from now until the 4th.  One of the most tempting is a THQ Complete Pack for only $49.99—which includes all of the THQ strategy greats, with Dawn of Warr II AND Chaos Rising, along with all 3 COH games, Metro 2033, all 3 Red Faction games, and a ton more.  All for only $49.99, talk about a steal!  Just about every developer on Steam has their games discounted, go check the deals out daily at the homepage here.

Geared Up

Well, there’s bittersweet news for Tron fans out there that were left revving their lightcycles at the sight of some new Tron peripherals.  We have heard that the console controllers for 360, Wii and PS3 were purely show pieces for E3, but one can imagine someone must be thinking about actually manufacturing them after all of the post-E3 interest in them and the media attention they got.  However, on a positive note, PC gamers can rejoice at the announcement that Razer, featured last week here for their Starcraft II PC peripherals, will be making a Tron:Legacy themed gaming mouse and keyboard.  Not many details have come out, I will keep you posted with more, but for now, bask at the pictures below!

A taste of Tron on the consoles

Check out the cool font on the keys. Looks pretty sweet!

Sleek and stylish, like a lightcycle!

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