Next Generation of Consoles Could See “Imminent” Launch

Consoles come in stages, from the PS2, Gamecube and Xbox to the Ps4, Wii and Xbox One, consoles are always launched around the same time leading to a large hype in people’s purchases as new games and technologies are revealed to the gaming community. According to the COO of GameStop, the new consoles could see “imminent” launch.

The statement was made during GameStop’s 2016 Investors Day, the companies Chief Operating Officer said that the company was happy to see new technologies being introduced, stating that things like virtual reality may play a big part in the next generation of consoles. Even going so far as to say that the rumoured new console could see an “imminent” launch.

This news shouldn’t be overly large, with companies like Nintendo constantly hinting at the NX while rumours were spread about the Playstation 4 getting an upgrade to run 4K content. With no word from companies regarding when or what the next consoles would officially feature, all we have is rumours and suggestions from fans and “sources”, including ones that point to upgradable versions of the Xbox consoles hardware.

With the last generation of consoles being released back in 2013 featuring the Wii U, Xbox One and PS4, gaming and technology has come a long way since then with virtual reality and 4K content becoming more than just an occasional venture, leading people to hope that the latest steps in technology will soon be released to the console gaming market.

Dolphin Emulator Now Has DirectX 12 Support

DirectX 12 is a low-level API which has the potential to allow for console-like optimization across a wide range of PC hardware. While it’s still early days, there’s a great deal of excitement surrounding games with plans to use Microsoft’s revolutionary API. For example, Quantum Break is a DirectX 12 exclusive so it will be fascinating to see the performance numbers on various setups. Additionally, there are rumours circulating which suggests that Rise of the Tomb Raider might receive a DirectX 12 patch. On another note, the Vulkan API is an open source alternative supporting Windows 7, 8.1, 10, Linux, Android and more! Competition is vital to push technology forward, and it’s not beyond the realm of possibilities to see emulators adopt both APIs.

Dolphin is one of the most promising emulators and allows users to play Gamecube and Wii games! This is a fantastic project because it’s possible to experience iconic Nintendo games at high resolutions. On the original hardware, the output resolution is quite limiting and features a really murky look on modern Televisions. As always, it’s incredibly difficult to create a working emulator with low hardware demands. Currently, Dolphin works very well using the DirectX 11 but there’s some room for improvement.

The user “hdcmeta” on the Dolphin forums, has created a DirectX 12 backend which exhibits performance improvements of up to 50%:

“Generally, graphics-intensive games get a nice win, while (Gamecube CPU)-bound games (Zelda OOT from the ‘bonus disk’ is a good example) are the same – graphics wasn’t on the critical path there. At higher resolutions, graphics becomes more important, so the relative improvement can increase there. In general, CPU usage is now much lower for the same workload relative to DX11/OpenGL.”

Here we can see the percentile difference between DirectX 11, DirectX 12, and OpenGL:

 

This is astonishing and showcases the kind of optimization on low-mid range hardware. I’m interested to see if the performance increases scale in a similar fashion on higher end GPUs. Whatever the case, it seems DirectX 12 has a major benefit in emulators and this is going to be great news for anyone wanting to play older Nintendo games in glorious detail.

Nintendo NX May Be a Home Console

Nintendo announced a few months ago that they are working on a brand new platform called “NX”. The company hasn’t told us any more details, and never confirmed if we can expect it to be a home console or new portable system.

Recent comments made by Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime caught our eye when interviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

“We’ve also said publicly that we are already hard at work on our next home console and that’s another element we’ll be talking about much later.”

It’s pretty obvious what this may mean, it’s a very strong hint and maybe confirmation that this all new Nintendo NX will be a console rather than a handheld device. What will it look like? what will it do? we have no idea.

With any luck, it will pack some of the features of the Wii U, but in a much more hardcore console. Nintendo is very good when it comes to consoles, but they’re nowhere near the same league as Xbox and PS4 when it comes to the latest games. They’re amazing for family and group fun but try to play a fast paced FPS on it and you may as well give up.

What do you think Nintendo are up to behind the scenes?

Thank you to NintendoEverything for providing us with this information

Man Claims Nintendo Wii Burned Down his RV

A Colorado Springs resident has suffered a devastating fire caused by his Nintendo Wii. Trevor Pellegrin had turned off his Wii and headed out only to return when neighbours called him about the fire. Firefighters have largely rules out all other sources of ignition and believe the Wii was the source of the fire.

Pellegrin had used the Wii earlier in the week for Netflix but had turned it off afterwards. Unlike some cases where electronics were covered up and overheated, that did not seem to be the case here. It is also uncertain if the ignition source came from within the Wii itself or was the power adapter. Shoddy power adapters can be the source of fires as they can fail to properly regulate power. Being in a RV could also have been a contributing issue as the power going into the console might not be the cleanest.

If the source was from the Wii or its power supply even when the console is off, it does raise concerns about the safety of always-on devices. Many electronics these days actually aren’t off when the user turns them “off”. This can lead to issues where the user then might not follow all the safety procedures as they believe the device to be unpowered. However, it’s important to note that consoles haven’t been much of a source of fires recently, as the lithium-ion batteries in mobile devices are more prone to fires.

Image Courtesy of 11News

Super Mario Galaxy Unreal Engine 4 Project Gets New Video

Last month, we reported on a beautifully rendered fan remake of Nintendo Wii 3D platforming classic Super Mario Galaxy (if it can be called a classic after only eight years. Ah, of course it can – it’s brilliant) recreated in Epic’s Unreal Engine 4. Now, its creator, CryZENx, has uploaded a new video of his creation to YouTube showing off Mario’s wall-jumping ability, as well as some stunning graphics.

Super Mario Galaxy is one of Nintendo’s best-selling games of all time, having shifted 12.22 million copies by March 2014, and was met with critical acclaim, holding a laudable 97 out of 100 score on Metacritic.

2015 seems to be the year for stunning HD fan remakes, with the recent reveal of Game time’s beautiful recreation of BioShock’s intro, rebuilt from the ground up using CryEngine 3.

Sadly, we’ve already seen a similar project, a fan remake of Super Mario 64 created in Unity, taken down. The remake was made available as an in-browser game, but Nintendo hit the game’s host, Cloudflare, with a copyright infringement notice. I fear that should this remarkable Super Mario Galaxy remake be made publicly available, it may meet a similar fate. However, “other means” are always available.

Thank you Dark Side of Gaming for providing us with this information.

Make Your Own Mario Game With “Mario Maker” in September

Some awesome news for Mario fans just came out of Nintendo during its live stream. In September “Mario Maker” will be launched, it is a game that allows players to create their own Mario levels.

Players will be able to create the levels that they have dreamed of for so long using styles from across the Mario series history.  A really nice feature that should see a lot of use is the ability to share user-created levels with the community. The levels are able to be easily created using the Wii U GamePad touch screen interface. Unfortunately it seems that the levels will be limited to the side scrolling variety and not the 3D open world types, but nonetheless still should be very enjoyable.

Source: Nintendo

Fan Renders Super Mario Galaxy in Unreal Engine 4

Nintendo Wii platformer Super Mario Galaxy is possibly the greatest iteration of 3D Mario ever made, and now a dedicated fan is importing it into Unreal Engine 4. YouTube user CryZENx has uploaded videos of his work-in-progress Super Mario Galaxy experiments in Unreal Engine 4, and they look beautiful.

Source: Dark Side of Gaming

Ubisoft’s Illusive Unreleased Wii U Game is a Crappy Party Quiz

Ubisoft’s CEO has said on occasion that while the company decided to release no titles for the Wii U, due to its poor sales, there is one finished title that the publisher has developed for the console, but will keep it under wraps until the console becomes more worthwhile.

A lot of rumour and discussion has centred around this mysterious title, with many wondering what it might be. Well now, according to Nintendo World Report, we might just have our first glimpse of it. It’s not all that exciting. It’s a party quiz.

Even if the Wii U does meet Ubisofts popularity requirements, they probably should just not bother releasing this.

Source: Nintendo World Report

Full-Size Wii Games Available for Wii U in eShop

Though the technology may be dated, the Nintendo Wii still boasts some of the finest video games from the last decade, so there’s some good news for those Wii U owners desperately scouring eBay for some of the previous generation’s classics: as of 14th January, the Wii U eShop will be selling full-size downloadable Wii games, starting with the brilliant 3D platformer Super Mario Galaxy 2.

If the release schedule follows the projected pace – with Punch-Out and Metroid Prime Trilogy due out on 22nd and 29th January, respectively – then it will take some time for Wii U owners to access a substantial Wii back-catalogue, but if the early releases are successful, it seems likely that Nintendo will accelerate its timetable.

Source: Engadget

Xbox the Most Popular Console for Porn, According to PornHub

Xbox users were the most frequent viewers of pornography in 2014, according to an end of year report by website PornHub. Microsoft’s Xbox consoles – both Xbox 360 and Xbox One, presumably – account for 45.7% of traffic from gaming machines, up 70.5% on last year.

Sony PlayStation users are also well represented, having a 40% share of console traffic, but is down on 2013’s figure by 36.8%. Wii Owners are at 8.2%, while the two handheld devices, the PS Vita and Nintendo 3DS, are responsible for 8.7% and 1.1% of PornHub views, respectively.

Source: Polygon

Guiness World Record For 8000 Nintendo Games

33-year-old Ahmed bin Fahad from the United Arab Emirates has been given a Guiness World Record for the “largest collection of Nintendo Entertainment System paraphernalia”.

Even though his record only fits his NES collection, he claims to have over 8000 games, covering Nintendo’s ancient arcade cabinets, the Famicom, NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, Wii and Wii U. He also has a giant collection of Game Boy and Nintendo DS games.

Fahad, who is a police officer by day, estimates to have spent over £260,000 on his collection.

“It is a very expensive hobby, but I wanted to set this record to give a message to the world that Arabs are not only interested in speeding cars and flashy things”. 

I guess this puts my paltry N64 collection to shame.

Source: Eurogamer

Nintendo’s Miyamoto Says Competitors are “Boring”

Shigeru Miyamoto, the legendary creator of some of the world’s most beloved video game series – Super Mario and The Legend of Zelda, has come out against the growing ‘Hollywood-isation’ of the gaming industry.

In a new interview with the Telegraph, the so-called “Walt Disney of games” has declared that games should be games and shouldn’t follow the model of making the games more like movies. He says “What the other companies are doing makes business sense. But it’s boring.”.

It’s certainly true that the gaming industry is becoming more like Hollywood. We see big franchises like Call of Duty, pouring out a canon of games every year or so, utilizing big budgets to pull in big profits. But Miyamoto, a man who would rather spend 5 or 6 years crafting a game like Super Mario Galaxy, thinks this is not the way to go. He’d much rather create an amazing experience that the player controls, instead making he or she the “director”. This is a proven method – games like Super Mario Bros, Super Mario 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time are regarded by many as some of the greatest games of all time.

“These younger game creators, they want to be recognized. They want to tell stories that will touch people’s hearts. And while I understand that desire, the trend worries me. It should be the experience, that is touching. What I strive for is to make the person playing the game the director. All I do is help them feel that, by playing, they’re creating something that only they could create.”

So it begs the question, are games losing the elements that make them ‘games’ or are they just maturing thanks to bigger budgets and a bigger audience?

Source: The Telegraph

Smas Bros. on Wii U to get Over 50 New Features

Nintendo has unveiled plans to include a myriad of new features in its upcoming game, Super Smash Bro. for Wii U. The plans include an eight-person multi-player arena, custom stage creation and the inclusion of Mewtoo; there are a ton of new features to get excited about.

The information was released recently through a live-streamed video session, which is viewable here, but if you’re looking for the straight facts – here are some of the features we’re most excited about:

8-Player Smash: In a major first for the franchise, a special mode lets eight players fight simultaneously in local multiplayer. This option appears only in the Wii U version, and lets players compete on even larger stages to accommodate all the characters.

amiibo Figures: When a player touches an amiibo figure to the Wii U GamePad, the character joins as a “figure player.” The amiibo figures can gain levels to become stronger and add equipment as they gain experience through battling. Players can have amiibo fight one another, and amiibo will bring you presents from the battles they fight in.

Custom Stage Creation: The touch screen of the Wii U GamePad makes it easier than ever for players to build their own stages and eventually share them with friends and other players around the world using broadband Internet access.

Importing Fighters: Fans of the Nintendo 3DS version of the game can immediately benefit from the fruits of their smashing labors. Players can import custom Nintendo 3DS fighters to the Wii U game, along with their customized equipment, costumes and hats.

Mewtwo: Like the soundtrack, this series veteran fighter will be made available as free downloadable content in spring of 2015 for anyone who buys both versions of the game.

Modes: The Wii U version of the game offers many new modes and different ways to play that keep players coming back for more:

  • Smash Tour: World Smash is a fighting party game that looks like a board game. Players use items, spin a wheel and advance around the map. Up to four players can compete at once as they navigate the board and gain fighters and power-ups they can use in a final battle.
  • Special Smash Mode: Players can customize battles with unique parameters.
  • Coin Battles: Players compete to collect coins from other players.
  • Stamina Matches: Players fight until their hit points reach zero.
  • Classic Mode: One or two players fight through a series of battles and advance as long as they survive. Many random events can shake things up, and players can adjust the intensity settings. The more difficult the game, the greater the rewards.
  • All-Star Mode: Like in the Nintendo 3DS version, opponents appear in chronological order. Only this time, the newest fighters appear before the older ones, and two players can battle through this mode together.
  • Event Mode: One or two players take on set character- and theme-based battles. Clearing stages helps players see the way forward.
  • Masterpieces: This menu gives players a peek into the past lives of some of the Super Smash Bros. characters. Players can play cut-down versions of the characters’ greatest games.


Stages
: The Wii U game offers more stages than any game in the series. The expanded Big Battlefield makes its debut in addition to the traditional Battlefield Stage. The Great Cave Offensive, based on the underground labyrinth found in Kirby games, challenges players to avoid potentially lethal danger zones – or throw their opponents into them. The Jungle Hijinxs stage, based on Donkey Kong Country Returns, lets players fight in the foreground and background. Blast barrels shoot players from front to back and vice versa.

Characters: The Wii U version offers 40 characters and the use of Mii characters from the start. Each character’s moves match those found in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, so players who hone their skills in the portable game will have an edge over opponents in the console version of the game.” BusinessWire

If you’re looking for the full list, check out the official press release from Nintendo.

We’ve seen some reported issues of lag and frame rate issues within Smash Bros on the 3DS, but all should be easily fixed thanks to Wii U’s superior computing power. Ee’re interested to hear your experiences, do you think the 3DS up to scratch for such an intense game? Either way, we’re extremely excited for Smash Bros. on the Wii U, maybe I’ll make my first console purchase since the N64! Nintendo also hasn’t been doing too well recently in the financial schemed of things, so here’s hoping that Smash Bros. will help fix that.

Image courtesy of Nintendo News Fix

Nintendo Cut Online Gameplay From Wii and DS Systems

Online gameplay through the Wii and DS consoles has been a big part of the entertainment world, particularly with games such as Mario Kart and Wii Sports, however Nintendo as of yesterday have cut the functionality to play games online, leaving users only the ability to play games in offline mode.

Connection to the internet is still available, so services such as iPlayer, the Internet Channel, the Weather channel and so on is not affected at this time and Nintendo have also made it clear that Wii U and 3DS games are not affected.

Why this change has been made is not yet clear, although I suspect that the closure has been made in a bid to push users towards purchasing the Wii U console and the subsequent games in order to keep the online functionality.  In addition a full list of the games affected has been made, and this can be found over on Nintendo’s website here; affected games.

Although the Wii is not at the forefront of console gaming, it is very popular with social game play in the likes of Mario Kart and Wii Sports and what effect this has on the gaming community is yet to be determined.

Source: Nintendo

Image courtesy of IGN

Teen Shot For Having Wii Remote In Hand

A female Police officer has shot and killed a 17-year-old at his home in Eagle View Mobile Home Park in Euharlee, Georgia. On Friday night Euharlee Police officers showed up at Christopher Roupe’s home to serve a probation warrant for his father. Upon hearing a knock at the door Christopher asked who was there, upon receiving no answer he opened the door and was immediately shot in the chest. According to eyewitnesses Christopher was holding a Wii remote, but police are saying he answered the door holding a gun.

The Roupe family has hired Cole Law as their attorney who has released this statement regarding the incident;

“A female officer told investigators that Roupe pointed a gun at her when he opened the door, it just doesn’t add up. We don’t know where that statement came from. The eyewitnesses on the scene clearly state that he had a Wii controller in his hand. he heard a knock at the door. He asked who it was, there was no response so he opened the door and upon opening the door he was immediately shot in the chest.”

The officer in question who shot Mr Roupe is said to have come out of the house, put her head in her hands and started sobbing after the incident. Mr Roupe was only 17 years old and attended Woodland High School where he was in the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps and wanted to join the Marines. Friends at Mr Roupe’s school say he was a good kid and always looked out for everyone.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qJZTkhE_yA[/youtube]

Coverage from WSB-TV

While details are still hard to come by, if the families account of the incident is correct then this is a horrible accident and a terrible waste of a young teens life who had his whole future ahead of him. Our condolences go out to all those affected by these events.

 Thank you WSB-TV 2 for the information provided

Image courtesy of Kotaku

UK All-Format Gaming Charts – Week Ending 28 December 2013

Another week and another busy week for the UK all-format gaming charts. One things is for certain this month, next-gen consoles are off to a rock solid start and while many will be debating who the winner is, truth is Sony and Microsoft are both winning in their own respects and it’s a promising start for the games industry as we enter 2014.  The new consoles have helped along game sales too and with 11 of the top twenty games being available on Xbox One or PlayStation 4 in one respect or another, and three of them being exclusively next-gen (Knack, Forza 5 & Dead Rising 3) its clear that software sales are doing well.

Still amazed this week to see that Aliens: Colonial Marines is back in the charts, it returned to 20th place last week and is still there this week, seriously, who is buying this game? Collect-em-all family fun is still going strong with Disney Infinity and Skylanders: Swap Force and will keep up all heavily indebted to publishers for at least another few months with a steady release of new characters.

Lego Marvel has dropped down to 7th place to make way for both Grand Theft Auto V and Need For Speed: Rivals, but beyond that we see that the big four, Battlefield, Assassin’s Creed IV, Call of Duty: Ghosts and Fifa 14 remain in the same spots as the previous week, showing some clear Christmas favourites for the holiday season.

POS.  TITLE  PUBLISHER  LAST
WEEK 
1 FIFA 14 EA SPORTS 1
2 CALL OF DUTY: GHOSTS ACTIVISION 2
3 ASSASSIN’S CREED IV: BLACK FLAG UBISOFT 3
4 BATTLEFIELD 4 EA GAMES 4
5 GRAND THEFT AUTO V ROCKSTAR 6
6 NEED FOR SPEED: RIVALS EA GAMES 8
7 LEGO MARVEL SUPER HEROES WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 5
8 JUST DANCE 2014 UBISOFT 7
9 MINECRAFT: XBOX 360 EDITION MICROSOFT 10
10 GRAN TURISMO 6 SONY COMPUTER ENT. 11
11 BATMAN: ARKHAM ORIGINS WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 12
12 WWE 2K14 2K SPORTS 14
13 FORZA MOTORSPORT 5 MICROSOFT 15
14 KILLZONE: SHADOW FALL SONY COMPUTER ENT. 9
15 SKYLANDERS SWAP FORCE SKYLANDERS 13
16 KNACK SONY COMPUTER ENT. 18
17 FOOTBALL MANAGER 2014 SEGA 18
18 DISNEY INFINITY DISNEY INFINITY 16
19 DEAD RISING 3 MICROSOFT 18
20 ALIENS: COLONIAL MARINES SEGA 20

What games did you pick up this Christmas, been hitting the chart toppers or bargain hunting in this months massive Steam sale?

LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Asgard Character Pack Released In Time For Christmas

Be merry with the Mighty Thor this holiday season and give the gift of Thunder with the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Asgard Character Pack, featuring LEGO minifigures Malekith, Kurse, Sif, Volstagg, Odin, Hogun, Fandral and Jane Foster!

Grab hold of Mjölnir and watch the brand NEW trailer featuring the Prince of Asgard, Thor, alongside his friends and allies here.

You can get your hands on the awesome LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Asgard Character Pack for £1.59, and the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: The Super Pack for £3.99. Both DLC packs can be downloaded exclusively on Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and PC.

LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: The Super Pack gives players more Super Heroes and Super Villains, plus new vehicles and races. Play as fan favorites Dark Phoenix, Winter Soldier, Symbiote Spider-Man, Hawkeye, Falcon, and Beta Ray Bill. Leave more damage with LEGO Big Figures Thanos and A-Bomb, and speed through 10 new races aboard the Spider-Mobile and Hawkeye’s Sky Cycle.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/hU2-fMn9eXE[/youtube]

If you haven’t played the holiday’s hottest family-friendly game yet, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes is out now for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and PC. You can also take your favorite heroes on the road with LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Universe in Peril, out now for Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Vita.

Thank you Lego for providing us with this information.

100% Sales Increase For Nintendo Hardware, 3DS Passes 10 Million Units Sold Milestone

Two games that are among the best reviewed of 2013 launched on Nov. 22: Super Mario 3D World for Wii U and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds for Nintendo 3DS. The strong response to these games helped sales of Nintendo hardware systems in November increase by 100 percent over the month prior. This includes nearly 770,000 units of the Nintendo 3DS family, which drove the lifetime total past 10 million to nearly 10.5 million units. Other sales milestones achieved for the month include:

Nintendo 3DS Family of Systems

• Pokémon X and Pokémon Y each sold more than 225,000 combined digital and physical units in their second month on the market. This brought the combined life-to-date total to more than 2.35 million units. On Dec. 4, Nintendo revealed special edition Pokémon X and Pokémon Y Nintendo 2DS bundles that should keep the games’ momentum going through the holidays and into 2014.

• The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, the sixth Nintendo 3DS title to have a Metacritic score of 90 or higher, sold more than 280,000 combined digital and physical units. That figure jumps to more than 405,000 total units when including the special edition Zelda-themed Nintendo 3DS XL system, which comes with a code to download the game.

• A handful of first-party Nintendo 3DS titles saw triple-digit sales percentage increases in November over sales in October. This includes standout 2013 titles such as Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D (seventh month on market; 140 percent increase) and Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (ninth month; 105 percent increase), and legacy titles such as Paper Mario: Sticker Star (13th month; 280 percent increase), Mario Kart 7 (23rd month; 130 percent increase) and Super Mario 3D Land (24th month; 235 percent increase).

Wii U

• Sales of Wii U hardware increased by more than 340 percent over sales in October.

• Super Mario 3D World for Wii U, currently the highest-rated next-generation title with a Metacritic score of 94, sold more than 215,000 combined digital and physical units in its first eight days on the market.

“This holiday season, Nintendo is offering an unparalleled combination of value and variety,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of sales and marketing. “In looking at these results, two things are indisputable: Our hardware is gaining momentum at the exact right time and our software catalog is stronger than ever.”

With Sony and Microsoft pushing their new hardware this holiday season it is easy to forget that Nintendo are stick doing well with the Wii U, sure it may not be breaking the headlines like the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4, but the console is still far from a failure and the 3DS is still a big seller to the mobile gaming market thanks to its diverse catalogue of titles and the new budget friendly 2DS model.

*Data regarding physical sales of games in November are from the NPD Group. Data regarding digital downloads of games and combined physical/digital life-to-date numbers are from Nintendo’s internal sales figures. All numbers, unless otherwise stated, are specific to the United States only.

Thank you Nintendo for providing us with this information.

Nintendo Finally Pulls Wii Consoles From Japan Markets

It was inevitable that the console would be laid to rest, even Nintendo them selves indicated a few weeks ago that they intended to stop manufacturing the Wii for Japan, but we’re still surprised that it was removed so quickly. The company has now listed the console as “discontinued” on its Japanese website.

This isn’t a big deal of course, there are millions of Wii consoles in circulation and given that I’ve rarely known one to break down, I have high hopes that Wii will be around for years to come. I was never a huge fan on the console, but it did have its moments and it did sell incredibly well for a console that many deemed to stupid to fail.

Those wanting access to the Wii games catalogue will now have to settle for the backwards compatible Wii U or second hand hardware, at least once Jap retailers sell out of current stock. It’s already becoming common place for the console to be pulled from shelves in the UK, and it seems as we slowly shift to next-gen, it has become time to start digging the graves for the current gen.

Wii and Wii Mini may still be available in other countries, but I wouldn’t expect that to last much longer, if you still want in on the action, now would be a great time.

Thank you Engadget for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Engadget.

Dragon Quest Series To Arrive on iOS & Android

The Dragon Quest series, all eight of them to be more specific, will arrive to the two most popular mobile platforms, iOS and Android. This has been made public in a statement by Square Enix Japan yesterday and can be found here. Dragon Quest 1 is scheduled to be released exclusively in Japan this winter. The rest of the world will just have to wait a little bit longer.

For those who do not know what Dragon Quest is, it was published as Dragon Warrior in North America until 2005, and it is a series of internationally best-selling console role-playing video game titles created by Yuji Horiiand his studio, Armor Project. The series was published by Square Enix, with localized versions of later installments for the Nintendo DS being published by Nintendo outside of Japan. The first title was published in 1986 and there are currently ten main-series titles and numerous spin-off games.

Nearly every game in the main series has either an anime or manga adaptation, or both. The series has had a significant impact on the development of console RPGs, and introduced a number of features to the genre. Installments of the series have appeared on MSX computers, Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, PlayStation,PlayStation 2 and Wii video game consoles, and several models of mobile phones. Each Dragon Quest video game soundtrack is arranged into an orchestral piece and the video game series is the first to have live-action ballet adaptations.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fI6JAAZhmyo[/youtube]

The remaining parts of the Dragon Quest series will be released eventually, in serial order. Mind you, none of the games will end up for just $0.99, or even $4.99. Knowing Square Enix, we fully expect the game to be priced at $15.99.

Thank you NextPowerUp for providing us with this information.

Image and video courtesy of NextPowerUp.

 

Xbox One Doesn’t Allow Gameplay In Every Country

Do you travel? If so, you might not be able to travel with the new Xbox One, as it may prevent you from playing some games while in a non-supported country.

Gregor Ivezic from the UK asked Xbox Support’s twitter feed a very simple question.

“Xbox One will block activation of games if outside of the IP range of a supported country? What if I travel a lot? @XboxSupport”

Xbox Support 2 @XboxSupport2 responded to his question with a simple answer.

“@Gi4ouR You’ll be able to play when you return home. I travel with an Xbox 360 for road gaming. ^PS”

If you’re a console gamer, you likely spend the majority of time on your console, and you likely take it with you when you travel, apparently Xbox does not support users traveling with their Xbox, preventing them from playing their games in some countries.

Xbox One seems to have been designed so that you will not want to use another console, or even use your PC for gaming or anything else for that matter. At the same time, if you use any other device, you are able to use those devices with your Xbox One. Though Xbox has made some changes that many consumers may or may not like. Such as making you connect to the internet at least once every 24 hours for your Xbox to function, implementing a fee for used game registration.

What are your list of Pro’s and Cons for the new Xbox One, why do you like it, or hate it? Let me know in the comments below. Xbox One, Xbox 360 or Playstation 4, which way will you be leaning?

Xbox One has released a disclaimer for people who might decide to pre-order. http://www.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-one/pre-order-xbox-one/disclaimer

If you are interested in seeing the Twitter feed for yourself check it out here!

Bu-Bye Wii Service

As some might know with the ‘sucessful’ launch of the WiiU it was only a matter of time before Nintendo started to gracefully remove some of it’s efforts on the Wii services. Since November 2006 Nintendo has been building it’s fan base aiming mostly at light gamers and kids. Whilst this was a market that was heavily under-valued it has allowed for the Wii to make it’s own mark in the gaming community.

And then the Wii-U came along.

With the likes of Kinect and Playstation move it was only time before the ‘better graphics’ came out for the Wii, they did, we laughed, we moved on.

However, it seems now that Nintendo are now disabling some services on June 28th, this services are purely for the online Wii shop but they spell a pretty dark picture for all those who game on the Wii;

  • Nintendo Channel
  • News Channel
  • Forecast Channel
  • Everybody Votes Channel
  • Mii Contest Channel
  • Data exchange with Wii Friends*

* Exchange of Wii messages on the Wii Message Board, exchange of Mii characters on the Mii Channel and message/data exchange within some games will be disabled

When companies begin to disable things, it pretty much states “We are giving up” so, here is to you Wii! See you in the antique store next summer!

The New Assassin’s Creed Arrives in UK Stores on 1st November

Ubisoft have announced Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag, the next installment in the company’s best-selling franchise. Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag introduces an all new hero and setting, and will feature the most diverse and seamless Assassin’s Creed world ever created.

In development for nearly two years, the game is being spearheaded by one of the veteran Assassin’s Creed teams in Ubisoft Montreal with support from Ubisoft studios in Annecy, Bucharest, Kiev, Quebec, Singapore and Sofia. Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag will be released on the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system, PlayStation 4 from Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Nintendo’s Wii U system, Windows PC and other next generation consoles. The game will be available on the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system, and Nintendo’s Wii U system on 1st November, 2013 in the UK.

“With the new hero and new setting we are creating the boldest and most unique Assassin’s Creed game yet, while still respecting the pillars of the franchise that have made it such a fan favorite,” said Yves Guillemot, chief executive officer at Ubisoft. “Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag is based on a true, harsh and exciting part of a legendary era and will thrill longtime fans and newcomers alike.”

Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag tells the story of Edward Kenway, a young British man with a thirst for danger and adventure, who falls from privateering for the Royal Navy into piracy as the war between the major Empires comes to an end. Edward is a fierce pirate and seasoned fighter who soon finds himself embroiled in the ancient war between Assassins and Templars. Set at the dawn of the 18th Century, the game features some of the most infamous pirates in history, such as Blackbeard and Charles Vane, and takes players on a journey throughout the West Indies during a turbulent and violent period of time later to become known as the Golden Age of Pirates.

Gameplay in Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag is based upon the franchise’s proven tenets. Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag features a vast open world with more than 50 navigable locations. Combat combines the weaponry of the Assassin’s Order with armaments of the era, and rewards both daring and stealth. And the series’ acclaimed multiplayer experience is more varied and ruthless than ever in Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag.

Customers who purchase Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag on PlayStation 3 or PlayStation 4 can download 60 minutes of additional gameplay via the PlayStation Network after the game’s launch.

More details will be unveiled by the end of March.

Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag can be pre-ordered at Uplay shop by visiting: http://shop.ubi.com/AC4BF

UK Will be Getting the Wii Mini, But Does Anyone Really Care?

 

The Wii Mini was launched in Canada last year, a cut down edition of their multi million selling original Wii, sort of a last hurrah to their arm waggling crazy and a way of selling even more hardware units in light of their recent console the Wii U. While Nintendo said that it didn’t know of any future for the new edition outside of the limited release in Canada, it seems they are bringing it to the UK.

While there is no official word on price at the moment it has been confirmed that it will arrive in retail outlets on the 22nd of March this year and I can’t help but wonder, do we really need it, or even if there is a market for the device here at this time?

To reduce the overall size and the cost of the device, Nintendo have stripped some of the features and with no online functionality and no GameCube support I feel they’ve taken two of the best features of the Wii away from the device. It is however ideal for those wanting a second console, a cheaper unit for their children, a replacement or even just for those that missed out and want to visit the console for some of the titles they may have missed out on. There are afterall a lot of great games for the Wii if you can track them down such as the various Zelda and Mario games.

The only issue I see is that you can pick up a 2nd hand Wii for next to nothing these days and still get all the functionality for less than the Wii Mini, so does anyone really need this console, especially given were in a market where PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 are cheaper than ever?

If the hardware does well here in the UK its likely that Nintendo will continue to release it in other markets, but it seems only time will tell if there is still some life in the platoform yet.