We've had some heavy-hitting gaming news this past week, say for example Ghostbusters: The Video Game's very apparent graphics discrepancy on competing consoles Xbox 360 and PS3. But I'd have to say that the Industry News section of our QuickPeek is clearly the winner of the highlights award for our 77th issue.
From ratings boards to company love-teams, to digital distribution vs retailers, Obama's take on indoor (video)gaming versus outdoor frolicking, CEO slip-ups, cover-ups, retractions and apologies, threats to drop support for a console (as in, it's friendship over for Sony, Activision), we've got all the drama -- and more -- right here.
You know what to do.
In a week filled with industry news, we ended up with a rather sparse recap of the big PSP-specific news that graced the QJ.NET PSP blog. The PSP Go -- or rather, retailers who are feeling a bit miffed by Sony's decision to go download-only for the Go -- was there to pick up the slack. Game-wise, we got a couple more updates as Capcom gears up for this week's Monster Hunter Freedom Unite release as well as more import news and some pre-order goodies for Dissidia, as if fans didn't have enough reason to buy it. Read on for the rest of the PSP Weekend Warrior!
Link: PSP Weekend Warrior
It's leaner than the past couple of weeks' hauls, but we did see some great homebrew releases this week. After a long time of inactivity, Yoshihiro burst right back onto the homebrew scene with a work-in-progress showing of his 5.50 debug firmware for PSP-1000s. OK, not really a release but it's a start. Homebrew gaming, meanwhile, was mostly dominated by one update after another for Light Cycle 3D, a beautiful-looking 3D homebrew game that brings Tron's light cycle racing to the PSP in 3D. Read on for the rest of the PSP Homebrew Weekend Warrior!
Link: PSP Homebrew Weekend Warrior
Bobby Kotick is all about the bottom line and he's made no bones about it. The Activision CEO has continually called for a PS3 price cut (which one would assume isn't because of a sense of altruism on Kotick's part), and since Sony isn't budging on that issue, he's starting to throw the full weight of Activision around. You can read all about the back-and-forth between Activision and Sony as well as all the other big PS3 news this week in this edition of the PS3 Weekend Warrior.
Link: PS3 Weekend Warrior
Hands down, the biggest news for this week coming from Microsoft would be the flub by their CEO, Steve Ballmer, at a conference, saying that a "new Xbox 360" will be released in 2010. Only to have his VPs and Directors come rushing forth to do some damage control before all hell breaks loose from disappointed fans who have been waiting and wishing and praying for a new console. It was a dark cloud that hung above the Xbox 360 state of affairs, casting heavy shadows on other news that came out, though not necessarily miniscule by themselves. See what I mean after the jump in this week's Warrior recap.
Link: Xbox 360 Weekend Warrior
This week's recap features a wide variety of news - from a TV spot, self-mutilation, pastries, and even sandwich bags trying to pass off as DSi accessories. While it's not the most gaming-dense rundown we've had, it certainly makes up for it with some amusement. Read on for the Nintendo Weekend Warrior.
Link: WiiDS Weekend Warrior
With the official release of the iPhone OS 3.0 earlier this week, this week's iPhone Weekend Warrior is packed with news regarding the new firmware. If you've been lagging behind the updates, read on and walk yourself through the details and the issues surrounding OS 3.0.
Link: iPhone Weekend Warrior
Just a month after Square Enix officially acquired Eidos, the two companies have now announced that they are looking into working together for a new IP. No less than the CEOs of both companies have conceded in an interview that "it's possible". This should be something worth watching out for.
Link: Square Enix and Eidos working on IP together
Here's another tandem that should come up with some pretty interesting results. Also resulting from a newly-forged partnership, this time through a merger, Koei Tecmo has announced that they will be combining new titles to launch a new game. Which ones should make a good pair, do you think?
Link: Koei Tecmo combining titles to launch a new game
Technology just keeps on evolving, particularly in this industry, and therefore it is imperative for the players in it to well-prepared to adapt. Ubisoft is one such company seemingly always ready for the big change as CEO Yves Guillemot announced that they are now ready for the next console generation. However, amidst the spurring motion controls race, he feels that traditional controls are still the best way to go.
Link: Guillemot: Ubisoft ready for next console generation, traditional controls still the best
After months of debating as to which ratings board should be applied, PEGI has won on a clear vote over BBFC, to be hailed as the lone UK standard for game ratings. Acting quick on the resolution, PEGI then came public with their new rating symbols for Europe. The industry agrees with it, citing PEGI's influence across many countries in the region. As for BBFC, they send their congratulations, albeit with the barb that they still believe they are the better choice.
Link: Goodbye BBFC: PEGI is now the UK standard for game ratings
Link: PEGI reveals new ratings symbols for Europe
Link: BBFC: Congrats to PEGI, but we're still better; industry reacts to verdict
Here on our side of the fence, there's also some ratings drama stirring up, though not to the same degree as the BBFC-PEGI face-off. Rather, it's ESRB wanting to extend its reach even to downloadable games, particularly those on the App Store. Thing is, Apple's got their own ratings board for that.
Link: ESRB planning to go mobile, wants to rate App Store games too
US President Barack Obama dips into the gaming activities of kids once more, stating that the young ones should spend more time playing outside rather than staying cooped up indoors playing video games. It's all for the sake of staying healthy, he says. But with the advent of motion controls in video games, keeping one's body busy with activity shouldn't be an issue any longer, I reckon.
Link: Obama: Less video games and more playing outside for kids
It's a sad ending to a tragic story. After being convicted guilty of shooting his parents, resulting to the death of his mother, "Halo Killer" Daniel Patric was finally sentenced to life imprisonment by the court. His father, remaining by his son's side despite the heinous crime he did upon them, asked for leniency from the court because of his age at the time of the murder. The court took this into consideration and so made him eligible for parole in 23 years.
Link: 23 years to life sentenced to 'Halo Killer' Daniel Petric
Even after the company's shut down, it's very unfortunate that they're still being hounded by legal troubles. Factor 5 is now being sued by their former employees on the grounds of fraudulent behavior in order to get out of paying their debts.
Link: Factor 5 being sued by ex-employees for fraud
Here's something fun. Celebrating the anniversary of the Gundam franchise, Tokyo has set up a humongous Gundam robot in the city to watch over and protect the people from possible evil-doers. No laser rays have been reported coming from the robot as of now, nor has the robot wandered off to explore the city. Judging from his height, his vantage point ought to give him a nice view of Tokyo anyway.
Link: Full-size Gundam in Tokyo now moves
Digital distribution is fairly common nowadays. But with the companies getting more aggressive about their digital distribution campaigns, ie. Sony and their UMD-less PSP Go, is there now a reason for retailers to be worried? Analysts say GameStop still has no reason to be threatened by this new medium -- yet.
Link: Analyst: GameStop not yet threatened by digital distribution
Jampacked, wasn't it? It'll be more fun if you stay with us for next week's recap. So keep 'em jumping and share your thoughts on those news that you think should matter.
Have a good new week!