Late Night Consoling

by Chris Remo, Nov 07, 2005 8:20pm PST

Speaking of the Xbox 360, if you're interested in Rare's Kameo: Elements of Power, have an interview! I made it myself. Well, ok, I did have the help of lead designer George Andreas.

  • Fable 360?

    Computer And Video Games claimed today that a sequel to Big Blue Box and Lionhead's Fable (Xbox) is in development for Xbox 360. Apparently, somebody conducted an interview with designer Peter Molyneux in which he talked about an upcoming 360 sequel, and then that person passed the news on to CVG. According to CVG's source, the game seems fairly similar to its predecessor in concept--you start out as a young boy, and as you grow your appearance is affected by the moral route you choose. This time around, however, you'll have a pet dog which is similarly affected in appearance and, somehow, breed. Somewhat oddly, it seems that the brothels featured in the expanded version of the first game, Fable: The Lost Chapters (Xbox, PC), will have a prominent place in the sequel. CVG expects the game, if it is in fact real, to ship during the 2006 holiday season. Lionhead refused to comment.
  • Game Movie Scripts-A-Plenty

    [ps2] [xbox] [gamecube]
    Movie news site Latino Review has been getting some attention for posting up detailed reviews of the scripts for two highly-anticipated game-based films: Splinter Cell, which went up last week, and Halo, which went up today and has understandably been generating quite a bit of attention on the internet. The reviewer describes the Halo film script, written by Alex Garland of 28 Days and The Beach fame, as "the Saving Private Ryan of video game movies," a relentless and brutal science fiction war film. He outlines the first act of what is allegedly the movie's 128-page script in great detail, and also relates some other particularly noteworthy scenes. It's tough to say whether it's genuine. The review is certainly very long and detailed, but then again people frequently go to elaborate lengths to perpetuate hoaxes on the internet. For what it's worth, GameSpot's Rumor Control column is guardedly giving Latino Review the benefit of the doubt, citing its accuracy on an early Batman Begins script review as positive credit. The Halo film recently received a great deal coverage due to Peter Jackson taking on an executive producer role for the project. No director has yet been announced. Halo is set for release some time in 2007.
  • 360 and iPod Compatible--For Now

    One of the Xbox 360's functions Microsoft has been eager to point out, given the upcoming console's stated goal as some kind of entertainment lifestyle device, is that it can draw music from a variety of USB-compatible portable music players--including Apple's wildly successful iPod. It seems, however, that Apple may not be as eager about the whole thing. Microsoft apparently contacted Apple asking to work out a deal for compatibility between the two devices, and when Apple refused Microsoft went ahead and implemented the functionality anyway. Microsoft refused to comment on whether any backwards engineering was necessary, but a programmer of a piece of 3rd-party iPod software said that Microsoft must have done some reverse engineering to get the 360 to interpret the iPod's method of storing music. The 360 is still unable to play music purchased through Apple's iTunes music store. The end result of this is that many expect Apple to take some kind of action against Microsoft as soon as the Xbox 360 is made publically available on November 22. For the record, Apple did take action against RealNetworks when the company released software allowing music purchased from Real's Harmony music service to be played on iPods. Apple accused Real of having "tactics and ethics of a hacker."
  • Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection Goes Live

    Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, Nintendo's online gaming service for DS and eventually Revolution, has officially gone live today. The website is now pretty much all there, with this encouraging statement in the corner: "Global Wi-Fi Gaming Service Fully Operational." The site has details of how to get connected to the service, as well as an automated service to locate free hotspots near a given location. Each of the two online launch games, Mario Kart DS and Tony Hawk's American Sk8land (DS), also has its own Gaming Hub page. The Gaming Hubs contain stats and scores of top players for each game--which are currently limited to game testers and journalists, assumedly. The site also features details about the various online features that will be available for each game; for example, every week there will be a featured Mario Kart race with a Nintendo staff member that will be recorded and hosted on the site. The first two online DS games will ship next week, at which time gamers will be able to register with the website and start using its features fully.
  • Spy Hunter: The Game: The Movie: The Game

    [ps2] [xbox]
    Midway sent out a press release today announcing the development of Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run, a new iteration of the classic Spy Hunter franchise which is also being made into a film starring The Rock (The Rundown, wrestling), written by Stuart Beattie (Collateral, Splinter Cell), and possibly directed by John Woo (Hard Boiled, The Killer). Nowhere to Run will feature the voice acting of The Rock. The game will of course also feature The Interceptor, the combat automobile featured in all of the previous games, but somewhat worryingly will also bring on-foot action to the series for the first time. For the first time in the Spy Hunter franchise we are allowing the player to step out from behind the wheel of the Interceptor and straight into the action," said Midway chief marketing officer Steve Allison.
  • Misc. Q&As/Features

    Game Informer has an interview with Mario Kart DS producer Hideko Konno. GameSpot has coverage of the recent Nintendo press event featuring the company's upcoming lineup.

Misc. Media/Previews

Screenshots: Steambot Chronicles (PS2). Metal Saga (PS2).
GameSpot checks out Indie Built's Amped 3 (X360) (so does IGN), 2K Sports' NHK 2K6 (X360, also PS2, Xbox), and Visual Concepts' NBA 2K6 (X360, also PS2, Xbox) (so does 1UP). 1UP checks out EA's Madden NFL 06 (X360, also PS2, Xbox, GCN, DS, PSP, GBA, PC). Screenshots: Monster Madness (X360). Movies: Gun (X360, also PS2, Xbox, GCN, PC). Monster Madness (X360). Amped 3 (X360).
1UP checks out Vivarium's Yoot Saito's Odama (GCN) (so does GameSpy), Next Level's Super Mario Strikers (GCN), and Nintendo's Chibi Robo (GCN) (so do GameSpot and GameSpy). IGN checks out Next Level's Super Mario Strikers (GCN), Vivarium's Yoot Saito's Odama, and Nintendo's Chibi Robo (GCN),
GameSpot takes a look at the single-player of Nintendo's Metroid Prime Hunters (DS), Square Enix's Final Fantasy IV (GBA, also SNES), Nintendo's Mario Kart DS (DS), Capcom's Resident Evil: Deadly Silence (DS), and Tomy's Naruto: Ninja Council (GBA). IGN checks out Taito's Guilty Gear Dust Strikers (DS). 1UP previews Namco's Tales of Phantasia (GBA, also SNES, PS1), Alphadream's Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time (DS), Square Enix's Final Fantasy IV (GBA, also SNES) and Nintendo's Metroid Prime Hunters (DS). GameSpy checks out Sega's Super Monkey Ball DS (DS). Game Informer checks out Nintendo's Mario Kart DS (DS). Screenshots: Prince of Persia Revelations (PSP). Movies: Animal Crossing: Wild World (DS).
GameSpot looks at The Collective's Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure (PS2, Xbox, PC). IGN previews Sega's Sonic Riders (PS2, Xbox, GCN).

Console Game Of The Evening [Submit Yours!]

Aero the Acrobat for the Super Nintendo. "Awesome music, cool acrobatics and kicking clown ass. Aero was a cool, underrated dude!" (submitted by megarust32)


26 Threads | 80 Comments

  • Apple's being shortsighted again - so what else is new? I'm sure they'd love to collect fees from Microsoft as part of the "Made for iPod" program, but they must see that, even now, their ground isn't so firm that "Made for iPod" is anything close to the strength of, say, "Designed for Windows XP." If they want to expand their presence, they need to realize that compatibility and interoperability are key, absolutely key. Microsoft certainly has; it's one of the reasons that they have the largest Linux lab in the world (the other reason, of course, being "know your enemies"). Apple should realize that they have important things - much more important than a bit of cash - to gain from the iPod being on excellent terms with what's sure to be a great-selling next-gen console.

    It's not surprising, though. Apple has never wanted to truly be part of an ecosystem.

  • A lot of news has been coming out about Animal Crossing: Wild World but I haven't seen much chat about it. The original Animal Crossing sold over a million copies in the US, which is a pretty big number for a quirky game on the Gamecube, and has inspired a rabid community on the net. So, even if you claim it's too fruity for the Shack, I don't believe you. Anyone with a sense of humor and a little creativity can enjoy the game. One of this foaming fans compiled this helpful list of what we know to be new in the DS version thus far:

    The biggest highlights are the on-line aspects and this list doesn't touch on many of them - like how all the various things you create in your own town can carry over to a friends town. For example, an animal of yours may tag along and move into a friends town taking with it whatever words you've taught them, the embarrassing letters you sent them, and the clothing designs of yours they might have chosen to wear. Then when your friend visits another friend that Animal might move again. Soon your creations might grace screens in various exotic locals like Michigan and Saskatoon. Other things cross over as well, like the constellations you create, or the faces you draw on a certain cat you might remember from he first game. You can also send messages to other towns that will wash up on their shores in a bottle. Nintendo can mail you in game sending free items, and update your town's bulletin board. Finally, four people can be in one town at any given time, so you can gather for in game holidays and various tournaments - or just to barter over missing set items or trade fruit. Word has it that you can even create your own hybrid plants to trade. Still, a lot of the on-line functionality hasn't be revealed yet.

    IGN also posted a series of movies that show off a detailed presentation of the game from the recent conference:

    Finally, if you hype level for the game is rising sharply you might want to dust off your GC version and do a little weeding. Today is Mayors Day, after all, and that sham of a mayor Tortimer will be at the well after sunrise handing out commemorative junk. Also every Sunday this week is the Autumn Fishing Tourney - be sure to get up early to get the best fish.

  • There isn't a hell of a lot of reverse engineering needed to have the 360 support non-DRM music on an iPod. The music is just hidden (look in X:\iPod_Control\Music\FYY where X is drive letter and YY is an incremental number from 00+) and all the stored information about those songs has been figured out a long time ago. There are plenty of iTunes replacements for adding/removing songs on the iPod and Microsoft could easily just buy-out some of that software.

    I currently use Anapod Explorer rather than iTunes because it integrates into Explorer so you can just drag-and-drop the music.