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  1. This obviously won't last for very long, but Amazon is technically paying their own customers to buy Playstation All-Stars: Battle Royale from them. How exactly did this happen? Well its all thanks to Sony's cross buy promotion and a poorly timed sale. Here are the details. As you all know, every brand new copy of Playstation All-Stars comes with a free Vita version of the game. The PS3 version of the game itself is currently on sale at Amazon for $30. While that would normally just be an okay deal, you have to factor in their current promotion where if you trade $20 worth of games into Amazon, you get an extra $20. How much does Playstation All-Stars trade in for? $22. So if you were to act now, you could buy Playstation All-Stars for $30, trade it in for $40, and then keep the Vita version of the game for yourself. You're essentially getting paid ten dollars to own the Vita version of the game. But again, this is only going to go on for so long before Amazon realizes that stacking sales and promotions like this is a bad idea. So if you're going to stick it to Amazon, you better do it quick. You can view the sale page below. Playstation All-Stars Amazon trade in promotion EDIT: Surprise surprise. Amazon has cut the trade in value in half. So no more free games and money for you.
  2. Developer: Team Ninja Publisher: Tecmo Koei Platform: PS Vita Release Date: March, 19 2013 ESRB: M for Mature Over the years, Dead or Alive as a series has become more known for its pandering than its fighting game roots. From loosely garbed women, imaginative physics, and sexualized volleyball spin-offs, it is little surprise how that label came about. However, prior to Dead or Alive 5's release, the newest installment was actually built up to be a less exploitative and a much more serious fighter, though one quick look at the game“s DLC will prove just how well that concept went over. Still, Team Ninja seems to have taken the most recent entry with an earnest effort toward a new direction as a fighter. With plenty of mechanical changes and some notable shifts in art direction from its predecessors, Dead or Alive 5 hardly comes off as a shoehorned effort. Less than a year later, it makes its way to the smaller screened device sporting new features with Dead or Alive 5 Plus on Vita. Among the fighting game community, Dead or Alive has always been viewed as a sort of 'casual' fighter; serving as the sort of less intimidating middle ground between Virtua Fighter and Tekken gameplay-wise, with DOA leaning to the Virtua Fighter side more so. Admittedly, with only two buttons designated for general attacks in DOA5 and its current tournament presence, that isn“t likely to change. Still, it would be very unfair to belittle the various additions and changes it has done with the series with DOA5+. The game harbors a solid amount of depth and various different playable characters, which, in addition to the game's well-done tutorials, certainly help accentuate these strengths. Dead or Alive 5 Plus's combat is fast-paced and fluid. Attack moves interchange between each other rather smoothly, making the overall game very mix-up heavy, asking players to not get too comfy with their punches, kicks, and grabs so they constantly change it up to overwhelm the opponent. It also does a solid job rewarding defensive play, encouraging players to capitalize on various counters for increased damage or extended combos to punish those more predictable opponents. There are a few more novelty mechanics that players can indulge in with more cinematic, stylized attacks that knock the enemies about the environments, which are executed by hitting the foe into a critical state before landing a specialized power hit. Even these flashy terrain attacks can be defended against, so the one being attacked can still shift the unfavorable momentum of battle with good reads. Overall, I find DOA5 to be refreshing mechanically as a fighter, especially in contrast to the mostly stagnant previous entries. Unlike the console release of the game, the story mode for DOA5+ is no longer a trial by fire tutorial/challenge mode, both of which get much more fleshed out individualized modes. I personally find that very relieving as it felt awkwardly implemented on the original console versions. The actual story however really teeters on the line between intentionally hokey and cringingly awful, falling back towards the latter more often than not. This is unfortunate, since the perspective switching narrative and varying timelines could“ve made for some solid intrigue. Regardless, It is likely that you“ll probably find yourself wondering if the trophy you get for not skipping any cutscene is really worth it or if it is maybe better to play something like arcade mode instead. Still, the positive thing is that the story mode isn“t very long, being less than a few hours total. The negative is, well, everything else about it. Tutorials are really well done in the game and feature four separate variations: free training, tutorial, command training, and combo challenge modes. The "Tutorial" mode does a great job teaching you by quite literally breaking down every mechanic of the game into bite-sized pieces, from basic movement and attacks to learning how to capitalize on counters. "Command training" helps players learn character specific attacks and stances, and lastly, "Combo challenge" is, of course, focused on learning and executing combos. Team Ninja really deserves a pat on the back for these and I would love to see more fighters even come close to how comprehensive the tutorials are for DOA5+. Fighting games on a base level tend to be rather intimidating and often times require external knowledge from their collaborative communities, which I don“t think is the case for this one. Aside from the tutorials and story modes, there are also the more traditional survival, arcade, and online versus modes as well as some tag team alterations. For online, I did have very poor luck finding matches, which is sad because this game features cross play/saves on both PS3 and Vita, that and it is a good game. In any case, the netcode was great from what I saw and seemed better than what I experienced on the consoles oddly enough. That said, the Vita version notably lacks lobbies of any sort unlike the console version, which can mean a lot for the life of an online fighter. Without lobbies, there are only really 3 modes: ranked, simple match (which seems like a quick-match for most fighters), and online dojo (practice mode with a human player). DOA5+ also supports local ad-hoc which I personally was unable to try out. A less noteworthy addition specific to DOA5+ is a new mode called "Touch fighter”. This new mode allows players to tilt the Vita screen vertically and horizontally based on preference, and fight in 1 vs 1 battles by executing attack commands through streamlined finger swipes and presses. It is novel in concept, regardless on my personal feelings on the lackluster execution, but it is very detached from any other facet of the game. Without so much as multiplayer functionality or use in the more standard modes like arcade, Touch Fighter just seems kind of like a pointless addition for anything beyond a short-lived novelty. After having a recent taste of the Ninja Gaiden Sigma ports on the Vita, I was rather skeptical how well DOA5+ would be treated. Thankfully, Team Ninja really paid the game a lot of respect on the handheld and more than proved me wrong. The character models do a great job at emulating their console counterparts, and as much as I don“t care for the story mode, the cutscenes also look really good on a technical level; even things like load times are remain fast throughout the game. Where the Vita port shows its more noticeable compromises is in the environments, with some areas looking a bit more stark in contrast to the console counterparts. Still, Tecmo Koei put their focus where it matters most technically with its gameplay. The framerate runs at a very consistent 60 frames per second and makes sure to never skips a beat, which means a ton for a 3D fighting game. DOA5 was a fairly solid looking game when it came to its visuals on consoles, and in the midst of playing this version, it can easily be indistinguishable on Vita. Dead or Alive 5 Plus makes for a very admirable and faithful port of its console brother, and easily the best example of a 3D fighter I've seen on a handheld. Of course, things like the story mode are rather painful to witness, and touch-screen mode is outright pointless, but I can hardly complain about either of those to any serious effect. It's a well-crafted game overall, and with its cleverly designed tutorials, solid fighting mechanics, polished presentation and music, it makes for a very welcome addition on the system. If you want an incredibly solid 3D fighter on the go, Dead or Alive 5 Plus would be my first recommendation for the system, and it makes for easily the best representation of the long running fighter's name. Pros: + Easy to learn fighting mechanics with a reasonable amount of depth + Visuals/animations in cutscenes and gameplay are great and remain very fluid throughout + Excellent Tutorials + Solid soundtrack Cons: + Awful story mode + No online lobbies... or online players + Touchscreen mode is pointless Overall Score: 8.0 (out of 10) Great A great fighter and excellent port for the Vita. An easy fighter to learn and get into with its very smart and comprehensive tutorials as well as sporting a solid amount of depth to its gameplay. DOA5+ makes for a very easy recommendation for newcomers to the series as well as veterans alike.
  3. I've been a member of Sony's Playstation Plus service since just about the very beginning. I might have missed a month or two and had a few complaints to lob at Sony about some of their stranger choices with their service, but I've enjoyed everything they've had to offer me this past year or so. But I have had one rather nagging problem with the service - it's made me afraid to buy things. Just think about it. Month after month Sony would roll out a new free game every Tuesday with little to no warning whatsoever. While a free game every week sounds like a pretty great deal, it was actually pretty gosh darned terrifying to a penny pinching monster such as myself. I was afraid because I didn't want to accidentally buy the game that was going to be free in the next week or so. But of course I had absolutely no way of telling whether or not the game I wanted to purchase was going to end up being free three days from then, so I had only two choices: Buy the game and just hope it doesn't become free, or wait until Tuesday passed to see what the free game was. The problem was that each week I would see the game I wanted wasn't the free one, but I would still hold off on buying it until the next week just in case it ended up being free then. Of course, this problem didn't plague everyone, but there was still the fact that nobody knew what would be coming on a week to week basis and it made people more apprehensive with their virtual wallets. This was a lucky break, I was just about to buy The Cave But all of that could be changing with Sony's new way of rolling out news postings about their Playstation Plus service. Instead of keeping everyone in the dark all month about what could be coming to the free section of the store, they've recently begun posting a list at the beginning of the month showcasing everything that will be free over the next few weeks. This new setup immediately knocks out any fears from the bigger penny pinchers among us, myself included. While this just appears to be an article about how much I enjoy Sony's new method of updating the Playstation Plus service, there's actually another reason I'm making this post. This whole showing us what we're getting before we actually get it setup is only temporary. Sony is likely just testing it out to see how fans react to it and to see if it helps raise sales for games not posted on their monthly list. In other words, we could lose our nice new setup if Sony ends up deciding we don't care for it for some totally ridiculous reason. So here's what you need to do - just go to the Playstation Blog and tell them you want them to keep the new setup the way it is. Let them know it's a million times better than their old way of keeping us in the dark. If we're lucky, they'll have the sense to keep doing things the way they are now. If not, then I guess it's back to holding my money in a death grip for fear of buying something that will be free later. Let's hope that isn't the case. As always, thank you for reading.
  4. Welcome, welcome one and all, to the offshoot of madness, that which sprung forth from the fires of a series of inquisitary tales called "So I Gotta Know" to form itself into a new, more threatening species known as "So I Gotta Rant!" In this new and unfamiliar-ish world, questions are no longer asked and answered and left alone. No, now, questions are asked, answered, and complained about for all to witness! So step inside if you dare, to a world where someone decided that griping about annoying things could make an engaging reading experience, step inside, friends and strangers, to this world of harsh words and harsher paragraph transitions, brought to you by Venomous Incorporated! So yesterday I decided to boot up Hitman: Absolution after buying it months ago and never playing it. I decided the first thing I ought to do is see how graphically intensive the game was, because it never hurts to be sure you're not jumping into 15 agonizing frames per second when you first start up a game. So I went in and ran the benchmark tool, and everything was looking good, so I exited out and got ready to play a rousing game of assassination and baldness starring Agent 47 as the assassination and his luxuriously luminescent head as the baldness. The Baldness always gets top billing. Then a strange thing happened: down in the corner of my screen, a little message told me "Achievement Unlocked." Evidently by checking to see how well the game would run, the game thought I'd done something noteworthy and decided to share that information with me and the world. "Hey! look over here!" It seemed to say. "You did something worth writing an awful pun and showering you with praise for!" It continued, well past the point that any sane human being should be hearing inanimate status messages speak to them. Well, didn't I feel special that I'd unlocked that achievement? Congraturation! No. No I didn't. Of all the things I could get an achievement for, checking to make sure my hardware was up to the task of playing the game was not something that I couldn't have accomplished without plenty of practice and time invested into the game. Of course, it's not the worst offender - plenty of games I've played have decided that it's an achievement that you pressed start on the title screen, if you even get that far - bwing! Achievement Unlocked - The Adventure Begins! That's great and all, but I don't really need the game to celebrate the fact that I actually bought it and played it. The developers and publishers should be happy about that fact, sure, but they could find less ridiculous ways to tell me that. More and more I'm seeing pointless, incredibly simple tasks to "achieve" that give me a little message that's supposed to make me feel good about myself. But how can I feel good about doing something that I literally could not have avoided doing if I wanted to play the game? Before I continue ranting, let's back up a little bit. When achievements were first introduced, there were still plenty of arbitrary ones like "kill 100 peoples" and "cleared chapter 1-1" but they were among various others that might have made you feel like you accomplished something, like an achievement for finding all the hidden goodies in a level or for getting 20 melee kills in a game where melee amounts to wildly flailing about and hoping you hit something enough times to kill it. Some achievements used to have meaning, and certainly, some still do, but they're lost among a sea of "press start for 10G" and "watch opening cinematic for a bronze trophy." This trend probably started around the time achievements and trophies pretty much became "mandatory" but has gotten worse in the following years. Why did developers stop trying with achievements and trophies and just start throwing freebies at gamers for no reason? Who are they even doing this for? I maked a character! Achievement hunters. These are people who, for whatever reason, subject themselves to playing games like Yaris and Dora the Explorer in Knee Deep in the Dead (I'm not good at remembering subtitles) just to get "easy achievements." Well, yeah, they're easy, they're pointless, and frankly, they don't need to exists. So why are people so obsessed with them? How does having a gamerscore of 100,000 make you better at games if all the games you played were incredibly easy? How does getting the platinum trophy in Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust make you feel anything other than dead inside? I'll never know, but I do know this - developers have noticed that there are people out there who will play easy or terrible (or terribly easy) games just for the achievements. So rather than actually, you know, make the achievements something you have to literally "achieve" they've decided that it would be easier on themselves and the people playing their terrible game if they awarded them for doing literally everything from starting the game to beating the first enemy to saving their progress. Soon enough, developers of non-terrible games caught on and thought "you know, people just want achievements, they don't care what they're for. Let's just stick them in there any old place!" and a new trend was born...a new trend of shamefully pandering to people who play games for the "rewards" instead of the actual gameplay. I don't know, maybe someone out there actually thoroughly enjoyed the 2009 Bionic Commando game and kept playing because they wanted to know more about Rad Spencer's wife arm, but it's safe to say most of the people who finished that game were critics, because they had to, and achievement hunters, because they wanted those achievements and trophies. "are you saying I don't stand on my own merits as a game??" I know this article sounds like I'm damning achievement hunters and developers alike, but it's hard not to with the trend showing no signs of letting up. For every one person who got all the achievements in Revelations 2012 because they couldn't get enough of the incredibly awe-inspiring shoddiness of it all, there were two more people who saw it through because it kept giving them achievements. For every one person who appreciates getting achievements as part of the game, there are two more who gloat about it. Achievements have gone from being a quaint little inclusion to being included solely for the purpose of giving collectors with too much time on their hands something to do and an undeserved sense of accomplishment. There may still be people out there who appreciate the good, hard to get achievements, but that just brings up another point...shouldn't it be time to start calling the difficult, "highest rank on every level in Bayonetta" rewards "achievements" and the pointless, "paused the game once" throwaways something more fitting like "free gamerscore?" It would make a lot more sense to see that than a word that doesn't mean what developers seem to think it means. But until I can petition the president of video games to make such a change, I guess we'll all just have to get used to achieving the possible. So that was my first little public outburst that I structured to look like semi-professional writing. This started out as another "So I Gotta Know" feature, but after reading over it a couple of times I decided it sounded more like a straight up rant than a fun game of questioning and answering. Anyway, what do you think about achievements in general? Have you long since stopped caring about them? Do you still enjoy them regardless of how difficult they are to get? Are you one of those achievement hunters I complained about and now you're standing outside my door with a pitchfork and a torch? If so, please let me know in the comments so I can go out the window.
  5. Jared

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  6. Jordan Haygood

    Crash Bandicoot

    From the album: Kaptain's Gallery

    © Naughty Dog

  7. In the last month or so, a great horror was wrought onto my computer. To make a long story short, a child dumped their milk on it. After hours of pulling it apart and letting it dry out, I was left with a computer that stayed on for such short bursts that the guy from Memento could remember everything he did on it before it turned itself off. If you don't get that reference, then too bad. We're moving on. As you're all most likely aware, Sony held a live streaming conference in late February showing off their next generation system, the Playstation 4. I was without a computer to watch it on, and the streaming on the Playstation 3's browser is pretty terrible, so I was left with one option - I had to journey into Playstation Home to watch. Yeah. Things get much worse from here. I'll be honest, I tried the Playstation Home thing out a few years ago. My judgment was that the world Sony had crafted was extremely lifeless and cheap feeling. It had been about a year or three since I had last stepped inside Home, so I was in for quite a shock when everything had loaded up for the first time. Sony had completely scrapped their original design! Sure, it was a more flashy and lively world now, but it still seemed wrong in some way. But that's a discussion for another day. I had a new problem I was facing. The theater where Sony was supposed to be streaming their conference was just gone. They David Copperfielded it. Dazed and confused in this new world, I set out on my search for the now missing theater. Since that story isn't interesting, I'll just say it was replaced with a teleporter that I found after about ten minutes. Clicking the teleportation device brought up a list of different areas I could go to in the game, including the theater area, which was fortunately only 24MBs in size. Unfortunately, it took about fifteen minutes for Home to download it. I looked at the clock and saw that I only had ten minutes left to get to the right theater! I entered the lobby in as much of a hurry as one lifeless puppet could in a digital world. Here's where we reach our next problem. There are seven different doors in the theater, all leading to different areas, NONE of them were labeled. It was just seven totally identical doors, each one containing a new area to slowly download. With time running out, I scrambled around trying to find any mention of which door was which. I eventually found a kiosk listing the information I needed, thankfully. Why they couldn't just put the signs above the doors themselves, I'll never know, but we'll save that riddle for another day. I didn't have time to ponder, so I bolted as fast as my awkwardly animated avatar would carry me and started downloading the area with just a few minutes to spare. I took my seat in the theater and waited for the stream to begin. Only, it didn't start. The screen sat blankly in front of us. People started telling everyone over the chat that it had begun and we needed to exit the theater and come back in to start seeing it. Terrified of the thought that I was missing the stream, I exited the theater with everyone else. I hurried my little avatar back into the building only to be met with the dreaded black screen once again. There was chatter among the other people in the room that the stream might have been delayed for Playstation Home for some reason, and that it would start any moment now. They were kind of right. After a few minutes the stream did start, but the only thing we saw was a small spinning circle in the middle of the blackness. For a solid ten minutes. People began to panic. People were panicking and asking each other questions, but no one had any answers. Then suddenly, a hairless man appeared on the big screen for but a moment, in those few seconds he stared down at us with a kind of awe. An understanding that everything would be alright. Then the theater completely locked up and my Playstation froze. Screw that guy. I made it back into the room in time to see the bald man jittering across the stage, pausing, and then transform into a totally new person. But after that strange display the stream started to normalize for the most part. But there were still a few big things nagging me. First of all, the screen was actually virtual. As in, they were playing the stream on a TV inside my TV. Despite going full screen in the theater, you could still see other player's avatars running around the stage underneath the screen. Little heads bobbing back and forth like I was watching a really bad episode of MST3K. While that was annoying, the bubbles are what tore it. What bubbles, you ask? Well, people in the game have little machines in their inventory which they can activate at any time to make the area more bubble friendly. The theater should have been one of those places where the bubble blower was restricted, but of course it wasn't. A few minutes into the already delayed stream, some people decided to give the room about 100% more bubbles than it previously had before. The bubbles almost immediately started blocking the screen for those watching. At this point, I physically hated Home off of my hard drive and just watched a super low quality stream on the Playstation Browser. Keep up the good work, Playstation Home! Without your poorly thought out dead worlds I wouldn't have been able to write this article about my hilarious mistake of trying to watch a stream on the Home servers. I'm sure the application will eventually be fun to use, but now is not that time. As always, thank you for reading.
  8. Let me start off by saying that I'm going to feel really really bad if it turns out this Joakim Mogren person is real. Not real as in his name is Joakim and he runs a company called Moby **** studios, but real as in an actor portraying the character Joakim. Imagine how weird it must feel seeing people debating on whether or not you are a real living person. Now that we've got that out of the way, I'm here to present my findings after going frame by frame through the entire Joakim Mogren interview multiple times looking for any possible oddities that would prove he was real or not. My verdict is... I'm not sure. I want to believe he's CGI, and there's evidence to support this, but all of the evidence is easy to explain away. Read on to find out what I mean. The Introduction First things first. As far as we can tell from the video, Joakim Mogren is a head and possibly a shirt. At no point do we ever see any other part of him. We do see a set of hands holding an iPad, but you never actually see him holding it. He never raises his hands and the camera is zoomed in so close to his face that the only evidence of him even having a shirt is that fact that the area beneath his head is darker than the wall behind him. Geoff Keighley also has a much better lighting position than Joakim does. This could just be a way to obscure who Joakim really is, but it could also be a way to hide any imperfections in a CGI model. If he is CGI, it would easily explain how Kojima and company were able to make him look so gosh darned realistic. Not only are they just animating the head in a dark shadowless area, but they don't even have to animate the whole thing. The bandages work as a great cover to mask anything that might have made him look less realistic. Of course that won't work forever, because at some point those bandages have to come off. Absolute 76% proof that something might be wrong Now, onto the oddities of Joakim Mogren. At almost no point in the three minute interview do his eyes ever move. Sure they appear to be looking in different directions at different parts of the video, but they only ever actually changed position when he had his eyes closed. That is, except for one time. At about 44 seconds in, Joakim's eyes are only half closed when he moves them, and in that split second, something weird happens. As you can see in the above gif, a white dot appears in Joakim's right eye as it moves to the side. It vanishes and then reappears as his eye finishes moving, and then it completely disappears forever. Now, my first thought was that it was just light reflecting off his eye. But when you watch the video you'll see that the dot appears for less than a half second and then never comes back. No matter what position he's in or how he's moving his head the light never reflects it again. It happens so fast you can barely even see it unless you're looking for it. Again, it could just be a reflection off his eye, but its something to look at. The End What you're going to see next is a bit more well known on the internet, but I wanted to talk about it anyway. At the very end of the video it is revealed that the Phantom Pain will be running on the Fox Engine, much to the shock and feigned surprise of Joakim. When he lets out his gasp, a few different strange things occur. First of all, the shadow on his neck flickers once or twice as he leans back. The people that think Joakim is a real person believe this flicker is caused by the iPad that Joakim may or may not have been holding. The smoking gun of maybes. While that is possible, and makes a lot more sense than him being CGI, I must point out that it was a still image on the screen and therefor wouldn't cause a flash (unless he turned it off or something, but what are the odds of that?). Another point made by people who believe Joakim to be CGI is the fact that he does a weird half blink as you can see in the gif posted above. I've been doing the same facial expression for the last half hour and can confirm that it is possible to do, but it feels unnatural. It could really go either way. I'll have to do it for another half hour to be sure. And then finally, the apparent clipping on the right side of his neck. As he leans back, it appears his shirt gets pulled slightly to the side and a tiny bit of his shoulder becomes exposed. While that is what I think is happening, if you look closely at the gif, it looks like his shirt is sliding out from underneath the bandages on the front of his neck. Something deemed pretty much impossible to actually do. I'm going to go with the more logical answer here simply because if they worked so hard to make Joakim look real, how could they miss something as big as his neck poking through his bandages? When it comes down to it, I think he's a real person. Every piece of evidence that states otherwise can kind of be debunked from what we see happening in the video. I'm really hoping that I'll be eating my words when we learn the truth in the next week or so when The Phantom Pain gets fully revealed at the Games Developer Conference. Until then, let's keep debating on whether or not a person exists because what else do we have to do? As always, thank you for reading.
  9. Welcome, one and all, to the wonderful, magical world of solo debatery and madness, that which is known as "So I Gotta Know!" Today's episode asks...why doesn't Sony's American branch seem to care about the success of the Vita? Despite being possibly the most powerful gaming handheld to date, the Vita has had a rough time in North America. It launched with a fair number of games, both digital and physical, but very few of these games were enticing enough for the average gamer to jump on the system right away, leaving it mostly to the early adopters. To be fair, though, the 3DS had a pretty rocky start as well, so that's just how things go when you launch a new system people aren't too sure about. However, where the 3DS has since picked up steam and become a strong seller for Nintendo, Sony's Vita is still back at the starting line, waiting for someone to give it a push out on to the field. So what's the problem? Well, part of it is the software library - even now, a year after the Vita launched, there's still very few "killer apps" that make the Vita worth owning. Many of the games released for the system have been ports or remakes of older games, which are great for Vita owners, but not so great at convincing non-owners that it's worth buying. Not only that, but looking at the release calendar for 2013 looks pretty grim - as of this writing, there are maybe 7 titles confirmed to be coming to Vita this year. How is that even possible? It's clear that Sony has a good relationship with developers, or at least enough money to bribe them, by looking at the numerous PS3 games that have exclusive content not found in other versions. So why can't Sony get developers on board for the Vita? da ba dee da ba die... Numbers. It all comes down to numbers...there's just not enough Vita owners out there to make developing for the system profitable. Developers aren't going to put time and effort into making a game for a system that relatively few people have compared to the PS3. This presents a conundrum, however, because if developers aren't making games for the Vita, no one's going to buy a Vita, leading to a vicious circle where nothing changes. It's clear that Sony needs to make some changes to their plans for the Vita in order to get more systems in players' hands, and yet, they seem to be content to just sail along and hope everything works out for the best. It's this disinterest from the company that's supposed to be promoting this device that really makes consumers and developers alike wary of the Vita, and it's going to hurt Sony in the longrun. So how can they turn things around if no one's making games for their system? Games like these, perhaps. Price. As seen in the brief GamesRadar article linked there, when Sony's Japanese branch dropped the price on the Vita, sales made a huge jump. Recent rumblings also suggest the release of Soul Sacrifice in that region have played a big part in moving units as well. If SCEA was to follow suit with a price drop, we'd see a surge of Vita sales in North America. From there, developers would have a revitalized interest in providing quality games for the growing Vita audience, and things would certainly start to look up for the system. And yet, it's almost as if SCEA is completely ignoring what their other branches are doing. Not only that, but they're ignoring what Nintendo did as well - Nintendo saw a surge of 3DS sales after their price cut. While it's true that reports suggest many stores have lowered the price on the 3G Vita by $100 (Sony has lowered it in their stores by $50, which you might notice makes it the same price as the Wi-Fi model), those same reports also suggest Sony may be discontinuing the 3G model, which will leave only the $250 Wi-Fi model unless Sony releases a new one. But unless Sony releases a newer, and more importantly, cheaper model of the Vita, nothing is going to change, yet Sony doesn't seem to mind. Rather than give people a reason to get excited about the Vita again, rather than guarantee some sales by dropping the price, rather than even try to find some way to make the Vita attractive even at it's current price point, SCEA is doing practically nothing to help the system succeed. If they're not going to cut the price, then it would certainly help to run a marketing campaign to at least make it look like they care about the Vita. But it would seem that no matter what people say, no matter what suggestions they make to help the Vita's audience grow, these words fall on deaf ears. And why? Why doesn't Sony step up their game and push the Vita? Why don't they remind developers of their successes with the PS3 and get them back on board? Why don't they do anything just to make it look like they're trying? Oh, right. Yes, it seems with the PS4's launch looming on the horizon, Sony has all but forgotten the PS3 and Vita and begun looking towards the future. While Sony did mention that some, or perhaps all, PS4 games would be playable on Vita, what good will that do if they don't start convincing people to buy the Vita? It seems Sony can't manage more than one console at a time, and so they've devoted all their resources to making sure people know the PS4 is coming and hyping it up. By focusing on the PS4, however, they're essentially killing the Vita outright - if they're working to bring developers on board for the PS4, who's developing for the Vita? If they're trying to convince consumers that the PS4's price is fair, who's going to change their mind about the Vita's? And finally, if Sony is making a marketing push to get the PS4's name out there and known across the gamerscape (I just made that up right now) who's going to tell people that the Vita still exists? Certainly not Sony, because they just don't seem to care about it anymore.
  10. Hey guys! Yesterday Mastiff along with Teyon, announced the release of the next installment in the Heavy Fire series, Shattered Spear next Tuesday, January 29th on X360, PS3 and PC! We are all very excited here at Teyon about the new release and would like to share with you all the trailer for Shattered Spear! For more news and updates, jump onto the official Heavy Fire website- www.heavyfire.com otherwise feel free to post questions and comments on this thread!
  11. Jordan Haygood

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