Late Night Consoling

  • Metal Gear Solid 4 not compromised for 360, may slip out of 2007

    [ps3] [xbox360]

    During the latest edition of Kojima Productions' Kojima Productions Report, host Ryan Payton hinted at a possible release date slip for the upcoming Metal Gear Solid 4 (PS3) and assured fans that the game is being optimized from the ground up for PlayStation 3. Staffers from 1UP joined Payton to discuss the game, and asked early on when the game will be released. "We're working hard," said Payton. "That said, I don't think people would be too mad if it came out a few months late. It's still MGS4, everybody's still going to buy it and love it, right?"

    Recently, GameStop/EBGames switched its internal release date for Metal Gear Solid 4 from September 1, 2007 to March 1, 2008. Retailer release dates are rarely accurate months in advance, barring an early official publisher announcement. This week's comments from Payton, however, may imply that the game needs a bit more time than initially projected. Past Metal Gear Solid 4 trailers have featured a general release period of 2007.

    During a reader mail section, Payton addressed fears seen among some of the dedicated Metal Gear fanbase that the game will end up being released for Xbox 360 as well as PlayStation 3. One 1UP staffer pointed out that he feels it a legitimate concern that, if the game is being developed concurrently for another platform, it may suffer from a lack of sufficient total resources. "I can tell you honestly at this point, we have not changed the game in any form with the idea of that we've got to do this on 360," responded Payton. "Put aside whether or not we're developing for 360 or not, but the game is built on the PS3 hardware, as you guys have known for the past two years almost."

    Payton's measured response, which stops short of any indication that Metal Gear Solid is in fact not in development for Xbox 360, may indicate that publisher Konami has elected to take a dual platform approach to the game in a modern development environment that has quickly seen the concept of high-budget third party exclusives disappear almost entirely.

    In our recent interview with Shane Kim of Microsoft Game Studios, the corporate VP voiced his thoughts on third party exclusives in the current generation. "You're not going to get exclusives from third parties in the future--not very many, anyway," he said. "It costs too much money to make and to market the titles, so third parties almost can't afford it, and hardware guys can't afford to pay a third party publisher."

    Shacknews has contacted Konami for comment on the matter.

  • Ubisoft CEO demands PS3 price cut


    Speaking to Reuters, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot expressed his belief that PlayStation 3's steep price tag will contribute to lower overall market share for the machine than its PlayStation 2 forbear. "I'm sure Sony will have a different market share...lower than before," he said. "They have to decrease the price quite significantly."

    Guillemot revealed that multiplatform-happy Ubisoft plans to release a PlayStation 3-exclusive title, though he did not elaborate as to the nature of the game. Oddly, he noted that the game will be released to the European market; it is not clear if it is intended exclusively for Europe.

    In a statement issued by Sony Computer Entertainment America, senior corporate communications director Dave Karraker responded to yesterday's monthly US sales figures, which pegged PlayStation 3 as April's weakest seller among currently-supported hardware from the three major manufacturers. The executive pointed to the current dearth of new, exclusive games for the system as the system's primary current hurdle.

    "PS3 did see a dip in sales in April that we attribute mostly to a lack of new software in the market," Karraker admitted. "For the remainder of this fiscal year, we expect a flood of new games for PS3 totalling more than 100 titles across all genres, including Heavenly Sword, Lair, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction, LittleBigPlanet and many more. We feel strongly that this robust library will help drive hardware sales in the upcoming months."

  • Capcom capsizes Flagship

    [ds] [gba]

    In its most recent financial report Capcom announced that it plans to dissolve the partly-owned developer Flagship (no relation to San Francisco-based Hellgate: London developer Flagship Studios), best known for its work on Nintendo-published portable games. Founded over ten years ago by designer Yoshiki Okamoto, who in 2005 founded Genji series developer Game Republic, Flagship was co-funded by Capcom, Nintendo, and Sega.

    Flagship was responsible for several original games in the Zelda franchise: Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons (GBC), Four Swords (GBA), and The Minish Cap (GBA). The company also co-developed Kirby & the Amazing Mirror (GBA) with HAL Laboratory and handled full development of the recent Kirby Squeek Squad (NDS). Capcom also employed the company to handle scenario work for its Resident Evil Code: Veronica (DC, PS2, GCN) and Resident Evil 0 (GCN).

    Flagship will be absorbed into Capcom as of June 1. According to GameSpot, its staff members will become employees of Capcom and will retain similar development roles. The move is part of a company-wide streamlining effort which also saw the dissolution of Okami (PS2) and God Hand (PS2) developer Clover Studio last year; unlike in the current Flagship situation, key Clover staff split off to form a new studio following the closure.

Console Game Of The Evening [Submit Yours!]

Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader for the GameCube. "A great Gamecube launch title. Single player closely matched the movies and it's graphics, voice acting, and gameplay was leaps ahead of the previous and it was very well polished. That Battle of Endor totally rocks!" (submitted by pebui)