Posts Tagged ‘Xbox 360’

Microsoft Corporation will be unveiling its next generation Xbox, thought to be called the Xbox 720, on 21 May.

It follows months of speculation that the company was preparing to announce a new video game console later this year.

The company has sent out press invitations hinting it would be announcing the successor to its seven-year-old Xbox 360.

Rival Sony announced in February that it would be launching the PlayStation 4 this year.

Microsoft’s event in May will be held at its Xbox campus near Seattle in the northwest of America just under a month before the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles.

“On May 21, we’ll mark the beginning of a new generation of games, TV and entertainment,” the company said on its official blog.

“At E3 we’ll continue the conversation and showcase our full line-up of blockbuster games.”

Falling spending

The Xbox 360 is the market-leading console and has 76 million users around the world.

Gaming blogs have been speculating about the possible features on a next-generation console but Microsoft has not commented on the rumours.

The present version of the Xbox has voice and gesture command capabilities.

Figures released at the end of last year suggested the amount of money being spent on traditional games consoles had dropped dramatically.

Video games analysts IHS said spending on consoles had fallen 20% in the last two years.

 

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FIFA 14 has been announced by EA, and this is kind of a shocking news… OK not really. But the game contains a bunch of new features and we also have some screenshots for it.

The game will be released on the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. No Wii U version has been revealed which is a bit weird because they there’s no point in hiding that version. They did say that more platforms will be announced later.

“FIFA 14 will play the way great matches are contested with build up through midfield, tension throughout the match as chances are created, and incredible finishing,” said David Rutter, Executive Producer for FIFA 14. “Opportunities in FIFA 14 will be rewarding and great goals will look stunning.”

There are some new features like Pure Shot and Real Ball Physics and here’s a description of that:

Finishing has been transformed with Pure Shot so players have the intelligence to adjust their stride and approach angle to find the best position for hitting the back of the net. Well-hit balls feel more exhilarating and rewarding. New shot types include pure strikes, as well as off-balance and rushed shots. Plus, Real Ball Physics now determines the trajectories of balls, enabling players to kick the ball with force from distance, drill low rising shots with accuracy, and blast dipping or turbulent shots, just like real players.

There’s no release date for the game yet but it will probably be released sometime later this year. The game contains 500 officially licensed clubs as well.

 

 

Will Nintendo rule the world?

Next Generation consoles..

While we have a pretty good idea about what the Wii U is and what Nintendo’s strategy is going to be, details about Sony and Microsoft’s next consoles have been very limited. However, based on comments made by these companies, I believe that the next generation of gaming will feature three very different consoles with separate strategies and functionalities.

Now one could say the same thing about this generation to a certain extent. Microsoft has focused on strong online play and multimedia functionality; Sony has released lots first-party exclusives and focused on being the “gamer’s system” with services like PlayStation Plus; and Nintendo has achieved great success by reaching a huge audience with innovative new motion controls and a cheap price tag while sacrificing HD graphics and some of its hardcore audience.

However, I would argue that the PS3 and Xbox 360 are fundamentally similar consoles, thus why so many games were released on both platforms. Both are HD systems with traditional controllers, robust online functions, and are both focused on giant AAA games, especially shooters. Nintendo’s decision to revolutionize how we play games while remaining in SD separated it from the other systems.It’s already apparent that the Wii U will also be unique in its controls and graphical fidelity, but I think people might be surprised by how different the Xbox 720 and PS4 could be.

In an interview with IGN during E3 2012, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios Phil Spencer couldn’t talk directly about Microsoft’s future plans. However, when asked about what they have up their sleeve for the next-generation, Spencer gave some hints of what’s to come.

“We really start looking at the Xbox as an entertainment product, plugged into the biggest screen in your house, the TV, and a unique display surface in the TV. That’s why I try to focus on SmartGlass, trying to light up other things that are happening in the house, because we understand that it’s a connected-device ecosystem.

It’s a little bit like Kinect when it came out. We got Dance Central 3, the kind of game that didn’t even really exist before Kinect came around. I think now we look at SmartGlass and these other opportunities, and I think the kind of entertainment that we’re building will continue to push forward, multiple devices and opportunities to play anywhere, asynchronous multiplayer gameplay. We’re trying to come up with new terms for these connected experiences. I think you’re going to see just a ton of growth.”

Based on this quote as well as Microsoft’s recent trends, it would appear that the next Xbox will continue to emphasize multimedia connectivity like Netflix, ESPN, and Internet Explorer while connecting with other devices through technology like SmartGlass. Maybe it will even come bundled with some kind of Kinect 2.0 that uses more accurate motion and voice controls to help you navigate the menus and play games.

IGN’s Colin Campbell mentions the likelihood of “new models for buying and playing games and priced, at least as an option, on a smart-phone subscription model, with a low entry price and further payments over a couple years”. This seems like a good possibility given Microsoft’s strategy of selling a 360 for $100 along with a two-year contract for Xbox Live. While they don’t seem to be in any hurry to move to the next generation, we have seen pictures of alleged 720 dev kits and know that some developers have them, so it can’t be too far away. A late 2013 launch time seems likely, but Microsoft could wait until 2014 for launch and announce it at the next E3.

Recently, I finally got a chance to play Assassin’s Creed II. It sold millions of copies, gained widespread critical acclaim, and… I found myself wondering why.

Not that it’s a bad game, necessarily, but if there’s one thing that defines this game, it’s the fact that the game is constantly inflicting arbitrary limits on you from the first frame. You can’t start the actual game proper until you talk to everybody in the room before entering the Animus. You can’t just climb up the towers to get to certain viewpoints, you have to follow a specific path laid out by the development team (or worse, unlock a mechanic to use). You have an open world but it’s deliberately limited until you finish certain memories, because God forbid we could unlock chunks of the map.

For me, the breaking point was an Assassin’s Tomb where you had to chase after a Templar who, of course, beat you to the goal. So you climb up to get into the room and fight the group. At this point I had throwing knives and a pistol.

And they were disabled. I couldn’t use two weapons to fight because the game had decided I wasn’t allowed to for no reason whatsoever except the game felt like it. This was immediately followed by a platforming section where you not only had to deal with the game’s imprecise controls but had to use an entirely new mechanic the game hadn’t introduced before this point.

Overrated or what?

The worst part is that this was hardly the only open-world action game that hit that year. inFamous and Prototype both were far less restrictive and frankly more fluid in getting around the world, and had better controls.

Again, it’s not a bad game, but it’s so unnecessarily restricted that I found myself wondering where the praise came from.

What about you? What game have you played and found maybe not bad, but baffled at the praise?

Ubisoft hasn’t been shy about revealing “Assassin’s Creed 3” footage and screenshots to eager fans. The latest clip from the third installment in the history-based franchise was revealed at San Diego’s Comic-Con festival, where new multiplayer screens and a walkthrough level was showcased.

“Assassin’s Creed 3” will take place in both New York and Boston, and will include historical landmarks from each location.

“The overall vibe of the city, the overall feel of the buildings around those landmarks is completely fresh,” Hutchinson said in the video.

Protagonist Connor will also be able to use hiding spots, such as wagons carrying bales of hay, to assassinate his victims. According to Hutchinson, “Assassin’s Creed 3” will also incorporate more side missions into the gaming experience. As players move through the levels, they will encounter characters that offer the opportunity to help them.

“As much as possible, we want to make the world feel alive and believable,” Hutchinson said.

The combat found in the game has been re-done “from the ground up,” and Connor’s specialty lies in using two weapons at the same time.

“We worked very hard on the flow of combat so your flow as a player is to continue your kill chain by using appropriate moves,” he said.

However, some revelations made at Comic-Con were not as positive for fans. Ubisoft has delayed the PC version of “Assassin’s Creed 3” past the targeted release date, but has not specified why. Hutchinson announced the news during a panel this week, and has said that PC version will be launched around the same time as console game.

Earlier this week, Ubisoft also revealed information about its upcoming PlayStation Vita title “Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation,” which was unveiled at E3 2012. A new trailer was officially released on Wednesday, and follows the new female assassin, Aveline, as she leaps around the city of New Orleans. The game will take place in the year 1765, right in the heart of the Revolution, which means players are likely to see some overlap with Connor’s storyline. “Assassin’s Creed: Liberati

on” is set for a release date of October 30 along with “Assassin’s Creed 3.”