DECEMBER 2009 NEWS
December 31, 2009
Here's one we couldn't pass up before celebrations tonight though. Play-Asia have just reduced the price of the Asian version (which is in English) The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena to only $AU22.51 plus shipping. That's a great price and you can help us out too by purchasing it at this link.
New Years News
Well another year has come and gone and I wanted to wish everyone a Happy New Years Eve. Stay safe, drink lots I say... We haven't fallen off the planet so look for updates, including our Annual Awards to resume when we sober up in the next day or two.
December 24, 2009
Can you believe it, another year has gone. The Global Financial Crisis has come and gone, the PSPgo has come (and some may say gone!), and some developers have gone too, but overall it has been a fantasic year for Sony and the PS3 in particular with a slimming down in both a physical and financial sense.
Sadly 2009 is the year that the PS2 put in some last kicks with only a couple of titles of note while the PSP was refreshed, but sales remained with the older UMD system. It seems download-only gaming is not here quite yet (and admittedly why would it be when retailers discount UMD versions of games cheaper then the media-less downloadable versions?!).
As most of you know Futuregamez.net is run by me, Dave, with no big financial backers and money coming out of my pocket. With that in mind I must wholeheartedly thank the wonderful companies - both gaming and movies - for their wonderful support throughout the year including plenty of news stories, review discs and other relevant information. I thank you all...
Next up are the reviewers - Chris Gobbett and Michael Allison. You guys rock. I send you some great titles, but also some shit at times and you get the reviews done in a timely, and professional manner. Thanks
Finally the ones that make it matter, the readers. I know there are quite a few of you, very loyal, and very passionate about gaming. Sure Futuregamez.net isn't the flashiest site, we don't load you up with videos, and sometimes we provide a few free typos in the news and reviews, but we value you all very much. Thanks for sticking around.
Anyway I, and Chris/Michael, want to wish you all a Happy Christmas and New Year. Stay with us over the coming weeks as we'll be updating the site with news and reviews (although perhaps a little less frequently) and of course putting online our Game of the Year Awards.
Merry Christmas - Dave Warner
December 23, 2009
Just a quick note to let you know the Playstation Store has been updated a bit earlier this week and the highlight, for many at least, is the numerous games and items put on Special for Christmas. There's a few great downloadable games we'll be picking up, and we're sure there will be some there for you too.
The Wrestler is a critically praised movie which tells the story of a wrestler who is well past his peak and is struggling to survive. A brilliant performance by Mickey Rourke is a highlight of this superb movie which is presented well on Blu-Ray.
December 22, 2009
Ratchet & Clank: A Crack In Time is the latest game in Insomniac's much loved franchise. This time the two main characters have been split up, but is this the end of the charismatic duo? We review this latest PS3 release which is the last in the current R&C trilogy.
December 21, 2009
Just wanted to let you know that we have completely updated our Blu-Ray Movie Reviews Page which we have neglected of late. If you're after a Blu-Ray for Christmas, you may want to check out our list of reviews.
December 20, 2009
The Ugly Truth is a romantic comedy, and while we don't usually like the genre we enjoyed this film quite a bit not least of which due to the two lead actors - Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler. If you're looking for something a bit crude, but amusing too, this is perfect.
December 18, 2009
In a rather astonishing turn of events Sega have successfully overturned the Refused Classification rating given to Aliens Vs Predator and had it changed to a MA15+ rating. The game, due in February, has not seen any changes or edits made with Sega, obviously, arguing their points against the original rating. Sega Australia's Darren Macbeth, Managing Director, issued the following statement after the decision:
"It is with great pleasure that we announce the success of our appeal. We are particularly proud that the game will be released in its original entirety, with no content altered or removed whatsoever. This is a big win for Australian gamers. We applaud the Classification Review Board on making a decision that clearly considers the context of the game, and is in line with the modern expectations of reasonable Australians".
December 17, 2009
Don't forget today's the day that the Gran Turismo Time Trial Demo hits the Playstation Store so check it out. It's only 219Mb or so too. Enjoy.
Tekken 6 is one of the most anticipated fighters of 2009 and is the continuation of one of the most loved games franchises. It looks good, sounds good and plays well too with the only little niggle being the online gameplay. Still, this is a brawler well worth a look.
December 16, 2009
Square-Enix has confirmed they shipped 1 million units of Final Fantasy XIII a few days ago to Japanese retailers for the launch tomorrow. A further 170,000 copies will be shipped by tomorrow's launch and another 150,000 copies will be shipped by the end of next week. Will it be a sellout? It's quite possible with previous games in the franchise selling over 2 million units in the launch week.
Tecmo Koei have announced Dead or Alive: Paradise for the PSP> The game, which is due out early next year, includes small games such as the beach volleyball and blackjack. We would have been more excited if it was a fighting game, but meh, it's scantly clad women which should excite some...
TinkerBell and the Lost Treasure is the second in Disney's direct-to-DVD TinkerBell titles. In fact, this release is out on Blu-Ray now and offers a stunning transfer with a solid movie too. This release is perfect for a young audience.
December 15, 2009
In case you are unaware Sony are releasing the GT Academy 2010 Time Trial this week on the Playstation Store with the best times around teh globe going into some comp to become a real race driver or something. Anyway we're too crap to really compete in that but what we will get is 2 cars to race on a single track. The good news is that the demo weighs in at only 219MB so there's no reason not to download the demo now is there??
Electronic Arts has confirmed that a demo for Army of Two: The 40th Day will be released on the Playstation Network on December 17th (that's, ermm, this week then) while a PSP demo will be released in Europe on January 14th 2010.
Operation Flashpoint Dragon Rising is the sequel to the hit 2001 shooter on the PC. Fortunately it's also available on consoles and takes the military shooter to the extreme with realism. Indeed this game can see you dead with a single bullet, running for miles and using vehicles to tear around the 135 square mile island. It's quite entertaining overall.
December 14, 2009
Australian Industry News
It's our turn to have our say. Finally the Australian Government has opened up to the public for comment on games ratings, and the possible introduction of an R18+ rating, here in Australia. We ask that all our Australian readers consider submitting something (there are documents on the right hand side of the page) to go into the process - but not something abusing, make it constructive. You can ding the details here. Submissions close on February 28 2010 so don't delay.
SingStar Motown has been out for a while now, but we only just got our hands on the review copy. We love Motown music and many of the bands on this disc, and subsequently was very keen to check this release out. Here's our verdict.
Year One sees Jack Black and Michael Cera star in this Sony comedy of biblical proportions or, at least, some proportion. This Blu-Ray is releasing in Australia this week, we've had a look.
December 13, 2009
One of the surprise new trailers shown at the Spike VGA's this morning was that for Batman: Arkham Asylum 2. As yet no details or a date, but we expect Christmas 2010 is a safe bet.
Also announced at today's VGA's was Star Wars Force Unleashed II which is due in Fall (Q'3) 2010, Green Day Rock Band, Medal of Honor (which looks very much like a very popular Activision shooter!), Spec Ops: The Line and True Crime.
Japanese gamers generally hate First Person Shooters, don't ask us why, but Square-Enix has just published Modern Warfare 2 in the territory with the game selling 64,000 copies on PS3 on the first day, and a further (impressive) 42,000 units on XBox 360. They're pretty impressive first day numbers especially given that Killzone 2 sold only 42,000 units in the first week and 78,576 in the first 10 weeks in Japan.
In case you are unaware sometime this morning (by our count it's 11am Brisbane time) the Spike Video Game Awards 2009 will be streamed online. You can check out the live streams, hopefully available outside America, right here (the links just come up initializing media at the moment - 10.30am Brisbane) Note: Seems Spike has issues, try this link here.
Well the awards are now over, and well done Spike TV on, well, stuffing up the streaming - not sure if it was technical fault or region locked (but no one seemed to be having any luck). Anyway the big news of the night for me was the winner of Game of the Year. The winner was none other then Uncharted 2: Among Thieves which beat out more fancied multi-platform games like Modern Warfare 2 and Assassin's Creed II. Congrats Naughty Dog.
December 10, 2009
Sony has today release PS3 Firmware 3.15 which includes two big functions. The first is the ability for the PS3 to play the PSP Minis (when this becomes available in mid-December), those cheap downloadable PSP games. Better still, if you bought the game on PSP you can use it on the PS3 without having to re-purchase the titles. We are unsure, though, how the low resolution will work on big-screen TVs without looking, well, cruddy. The second big feature is that of a Data Transfer Utility so you can transfer all your files from one PS3 to another (with the exception of copy protected save files).
Activision have released patch 1.06 for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which fixes up the Javelin glitch/exploit. Play online and you'll be prompted to download the 15MB patch.
According to reports online Square-Enix has confirmed that the PS3 version of Final Fantasy XII will indeed be superior to the XBox 360 version on a technical level. Essentially the PS3 version will come on a dual layer 50GB Blu-Ray, but to fit it onto multiple DVD's for XBox 360 the video and audio need to be compressed.
Band Hero is Guitar Hero but with popular mainstream music which offers a more family friendly focus. With the same brilliant gameplay elements and 65 tracks there is plenty on offer here for those that love the track listing.
December 9, 2009
Finally, after months and months of cries for a release Sega has relented and finally confirmed that Yakuza 3 will be released in America, Europe and Australia in March 2010. We quite enjoyed the previous titles in the series released in 2006 and 2008 which were released on PS2 (you can read our review of Yakuza 2 here).
Final Fantasy XIII is one of the most anticipated RPG's of all time and Famitsu in Japan has reviewed the title which is due out this month. Were they impressed? Well they gave the game a shockingly low 22/40. Oh wait, no, I mean 39/40 (did I scare you?!). You can read a translation of the game here with a translation of the comments. The game has been confirmed for release in America and Europe in March 2010.
Terminator Salvation was one of the big-budget Hollywood movies of 2009 and took in a moderate $US371 million worldwide at the box office. Sony Pictures have just released the movie out on Blu-Ray today and it's a pretty spectacular release too so if you liked the movie you should pick this disc up now.
December 8, 2009
Electronic Arts have today confirmed that Dead Space 2 is currently in development for the PS3. Unfortunately there's no date as yet, however an online ad for an "Senior Online Level Designer - Dead Space Franchise" hints that the game will have online modes, but may still be a way off.
According to the latest financial report Max Payne 3 has been pushed back to Q'4 2010.
Koei has confirmed that Quantum Theory will be released on both PS3 and XBox 36 (there goes another PS3 exclusive), and will hit European shelves in Spring (Q'2) 2010.
Seems the bird is coming back tomorrow with some big news to do with a certain "Godly" game and something about a Collection... Hmmm...
Assassin's Creed II is one of the most anticipated games of the year. With Ubisoft promising improvements over the original title, which was already very good, we were keen to check this out, and indeed the results are very impressive indeed.
December 7, 2009
An American Affair probably isn't a movie you've heard of as it never actually hit cinemas in Australia. Loosely based on a real character who had an affair with JFK this movie is an intereting, but somewhat misguided, effort. The Blu-Ray is out now and we've had a look.
December 6, 2009
Well our little birdie dropped in with some very juicy release dates. Sony's 256-player online shooter MAG is set for Februay 11th, White Knight Chronicles will apparently drop on the same day, Heavy Rain is February 25, God of War III is due on March 18, and finally Gran Turismo 5 is due in April/May (although we're not sure if that's 2010 or 2011 - kidding!) On the PSP front expect both Fat Princess and SOCOM around February 11th. Of course none of this is official yet, but I don't spend time typing so much for nothing now do I, or was the birdie having fun with me?
Queensland R18+ Game Rating Petition
We don't know how far this will go, but there is a Petition up to the Queensland State Government to introduce legislation for R18+ games in Australia. The petition is only open to Queensland residents, but if you are one, we suggest you sign up (and please, only use legitimate details). Check it out here - it's currently sitting at 4973 signatures which far exceeds the number of signatures on other petitions (which you can see here.
December 4, 2009
Well here's some big news which sidetracked us for much of today. Sega's stunning looking Aliens Vs Predator has been Refused Classifcation by the OFLC. There have been statements from several parties, but Rebellion's may put the nail in the coffin for the game being release here should the decision not be overturned on appeal. Let's see what went down...
Sega Australia were quick off the mark this morning with the following remark:
"SEGA Australia can today confirm that the initial submission of Aliens vs Predator has been Refused Classification by the Classification Operations Board of Australia. We will continue to investigate all options available to us, including the possibility of appeal."
This was followed by extracts from the OFLC's classification report which states:
"the game contains first-person perspective, close-up depictions of human characters being subjected to various types of violence, including explicit decapitation and dismemberment as well as locational damage such as stabbing through the chest, mouth, throat, or eyes." (Sounds like an Alien or Predators tie-in for sure!)
Finally Rebellion's CEO Jason Kingsley has stated that Australians are all children (no, I don't think they're aiming that at us, but perhaps a small dig at the OFLC. Their statement (as seen on MCV here) is as follows:
"Rebellion is disappointed that its upcoming title Aliens vs. Predator has been banned in Australia however, as we understand the law in that country the authorities had no choice as we agree strongly that our game is not suitable for game players who are not adults.
The content of AvP is based on some of the most innovative and iconic horror movies, and as such we wanted to create a title that was true to the source material. It is for adults, and it is bloody and frightening, that was our intent.
We will not be releasing a sanitized or cut down version for territories where adults are not considered by their governments to be able to make their own entertainment choices."
Dammit, little birdie was so upset by the other news regarding Aliens Vs Predator today, that he missed todays flock and will most liklely fly in with tomorrow's flock instead. Still he did forward another little tidbit, buggers me what it means "I dont like driving hundreds of cars, but I'll make an exception in (seems this word was covered in, well, a not so nice accident!) 2010."
December 3, 2009
What's this.. The little birdie is paying us a visit soon, very soon. It appers the little birdie has sent a carrier pidgeon announcing his upcoming arrival with the musterious message "The third God is loading a MAG before it Rains with Heavy release dates"?! Strange... Stay tuned...
Wet is a pretty interesting name for an action title. Indeed this bloody action shooter has been out for a few weeks now, but it's a game which has some entertaining moments. Michael has played it, and gives you the full rundown.
December 2, 2009
The Librarians Series 2 is, as you may have gathered, the second season of the hit ABC comedy series. We've taken a look at this Australian comedy on Blu-Ray which is a fairly entertaining effort. A review...
December 1, 2009
Now this is exciting news for Playstation 3 (and other Blu-Ray owners). Village Roadshow has today announced that The Lord of the Rings is coming to Blu-Ray in April 2010 with the message "It's Official. Middle Earth is turning Blu". We don't actually know exactly if it means just the first movie, or the entire trilogy, nor if it will be the Theatrical or Extended versions, but more details are promised soon. Mark April 2010 in your diaries.
Ubisoft has today announced that Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands will be released on unspecified consoles in May 2010. This is the same month in which the Jake Gyllenhaal Prince of Persia movie will be released in cinemas, but the stories will be quite seperate. The last Prince of Persia was pretty impressive so we're looking forward to this new title.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is already one of the biggest selling video games of all time with millions of sales in the first week alone (after 3 weeks sales have surpassed 7 million units on PS3/360!). We give you our thoughts in our full review of this epic shooter.
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