Nintendo has announced it's E3 plans, and they will be similar to last year. Forgoing the live presentation, the company will instead have a live event on June 10th to showcase where Nintendo will be going with it's games. On top of this, the company will also be streaming live demos during E3 so viewers at home can see them.
This is pretty close to the direction Nintendo has been hinting at. This format allows the company to be flexible with what it shows as well as give viewers at home a glimpse at the inside of Nintendo's E3, something that Sony and Microsoft have to rely on gaming journalist outlets to do. Very interesting approach indeed. We will have to see if it pays off for the company.
Sony Entertainment Online has finally released the cross game monthly pass. For $15 a month, players get access to EverQuest, EverQuest Next, H1Z1,PlanetSide 2 and Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. On top of access to all of these games, players also get 500 credits of in game cash per month as well as 10% discounts on all in game stores.
This is such an interesting business model. In a time when so many MMO's are dropping monthly fees and embracing free to play in order to bring people in to pay for extras, this seems like another attempt to keep the monthly fee around and make it worth while for gmaers. I think it's brilliant. Most players will only play one or two of the games available (since MMO's take up so much time to get far) and handing out discounts is minor for Sony but a big win for players. Overall, I really hope this is successful because, like Sony's Cross-Buy and Cross-Save, it's a win-win for both players and Sony.
The Xbox One will be launching in China this September, along side the bevy of other territories. Partnering with home entertainment firm BesTV, Microsoft has worked out a deal to launch the system in the country a few short months after the 14 year console ban has lifted.
This is so good for Microsoft. China is a market many game companies have been trying to get in on, and the fact that Microsoft can add the territory to it's launch is amazing, both perception and profits wise. Sony hasn't announced a launch of the PS4 in the country, and seeing as how China and Japanese politics are really shaky, and Chinese politics effect business dealings, I wouldn't bet on a PS4 launch in the country anytime soon. Way to go Microsoft.
Ty Corey Franck, personal assistant to George R.R. Martin, will be assisting in the creation of Telltale's Game of Thrones game. This is not a huge surprise to fans who follow the studio, but it's good news none the less to see that the original creator is interested enough in this side project to assign someone important to him on the project. Personally, it has alleviated some of the worries I had for the game, despite not seeing anything else about the game.
Nintendo is pulling out all the stops with the launch of Mario Kart 8. For fans who purchase the game around launch, a free digital Wii U game will be available to them (either Super Mario Bros U, Wii Party U, Pikmin 3 or Legend of Zelda: Windwaker HD). On top of that, the company is launching a bundle that will include the Wii U Deluxe, the Wii U Pro Controller, Mario Kart 8 and a steering wheel holster for the Wii controller.
It seems that Nintendo is starting to acknowledge that the Wii U needs help. This is great to hear, as there are plenty of gamers and families who have been on the fence about the console and just need that little push to jump on the band wagon. With very little coming out in May, maybe these incentives will help boost sales for the fledgling console.
And, per usual, here's a list of smaller news stories out today:
- Amazing Spider-Man 2 IS out for Xbox One today, despite rumors of delay.
- DriveClub is being released on October 7th.
- Three more indie games announced for Sony platforms.
- Injustice: God's Among Us 2 is reportedly in development.
- Watch_Dogs Season Pass detailed.
- Blizzard is bringing it's games to the Philippines.
- Minecraft sells 15 million on PC.
- Resogun content teased again by Housemarque.
- Outlast DLC hits PS4 and PC next week.
- Left 4 Dead coming to arcades in Japan.
- Mass Effect 4 in the middle of development.
- DriveClub delay due to Dynamic Menu design needing refinement.
- Sony files 'Bloodborne' trademark.
- Disney has announced 'Disney Infinity Marvel Super Heroes'.
- New Games with Gold announced for May.