GAMERSGATE AND INDIE GAME PUBLISHER ROCKIN ANDROID TEAM UP TO DIGITALLY DISTRIBUTE INDIE TITLES

gamersgateRockinAndroid_link

GamersGate, a leading platform for digitally distributed PC games, today announced a distribution deal with indie videogame publisher Rockin Android.  GamersGate will offer a lineup of localized indie videogame titles officially licensed from Japan. The first title available will be the Japanese fan-favorite hybrid shoot’em up, fighter SUGURI, scheduled for availability at the end of June. Additional titles from Rockin Android will soon follow. I’m thrilled with this partnership, said Rockin Android President Enrique Galvez. The rock solid reputation and wide-reaching, user-friendly platform of GamersGate will tremendously help to expose some of Japan¹s best indie PC games to an even wider global audience. We have always placed a high importance on offering high-quality indie titles, said Theodore Bergquist, CEO of GamersGate.  Rockin Android has made a name for itself by finding some fantastic indie titles and brining them to market.  We’re very pleased to help deliver these titles to the GamersGate community.

About SUGURI:

Experience the rush of battle as you wage intensive aerial duels in the fan-acclaimed SUGURI, one of the most unique hybrid shooter/fighter titles ever created by Japan indie game developer Orange Juice.   Showcasing beautifully rendered designs, innovative weaponry, rapid-fire combat gameplay action and a cool techno-trance soundtrack, SUGURI is a must-have, must-play indie game.

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Maingear releases new Media Center/ Gaming machine

MainGear sent us a press release about thier new Living Room Gaming/Media system

hopefully we will be able to get a demo unit for an in depth review.

-Mario Garcia

MAINGEAR Unveils Luxury Gaming PC for the Living Room

Axess HD Gamer combines high performance gaming and media center
capabilities in a low profile design

Union, New Jersey – June 18th, 2009 – MAINGEAR Computers,
award-winning builders of high performance custom computers for PC gamers
and enthusiasts, is proud to announce the Axess HD Gamer, a luxury gaming
PC that brings high end gaming to the living room. Built into a sleek,
low profile, aluminum HTPC form factor with an acrylic trim, the Axess HD
was designed to integrate seamlessly into any home theater set up with
existing A/V components.

The impressive list of hardware for the Axess HD includes a powerful Core
i7 processor combined with dual 9800 GT video cards in SLI to deliver a
stunningly visual1080p experience. MAINGEAR also teamed up with NVIDIA to
integrate GeForce 3D Vision so that gamers with Mitsubishi DLP’s or
Samsung desktop LCDs can experience an unparalleled 3D gaming experience.
MAINGEAR further enhances the luxurious home theater gaming experience by
being the first company to offer the Phantom Lapboard, a unique keyboard
that liberates users from desktop settings through an innovative
360-degree rotating design. The Axess HD Gamer also offers cutting edge
media center capabilities including 7 channel pre amplified audio, Blu Ray
and DVD Movies, Music, Home Videos, HD TV, Internet TV, based on
Microsoft® Windows® Vista Home Premium which also provides access
to Netflix’s online streaming through the Media Center interface.

”The Axess HD Gamer was conceived to deliver unsurpassed gaming
performance fused with advanced media center capabilities all contained
within a low profile case, making it the perfect cornerstone for any home
theater environment” said Wallace Santos, CEO and Founder of
MAINGEAR. “A lot of the media centers currently on the market
don’t specifically address the PC Gamer and we want to give our
customers a solution to game from the comfort of the living room without
sacrificing quality or performance.”

“We’re thrilled that MAINGEAR is providing a Games for Windows solution
that complements the wide range of media functionality that Windows Vista
Media Center already provides,” said Megan Both, Snr. Director of OEM
Sales at Microsoft. “This high performance 3D gaming system combined with
the advanced functionality of Windows Media Center make the Axess HD Gamer
a phenomenal option for the home theater enthusiast as well as the avid
gamer.”

Gamers can purchase the Axess HD Gamer at MAINGEAR’s Web site
http://www.maingear.com or order by phone at (888-MAINGEAR). The base price is
$1,799. Axess HD Gamer comes with MAINGEAR’s standard 14 month
warranty and is backed by the best in-house support team in the country.

Bethesda Parent company Aquires ID

Press release from Zenimax website :

ZeniMax Media Acquires id Software
Brings together two of world’s best game studios
Library of powerhouse franchises will include DOOM, Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, QUAKE, Wolfenstein and RAGE

June 24, 2009 (Rockville, MD) – ZeniMax Media Inc., parent company of noted game publisher Bethesda Softworks, today announced it has completed the acquisition of legendary game studio, id Software, creators of world-renowned games such as DOOM, QUAKE, Wolfenstein, and its upcoming title, RAGE. The acquisition by ZeniMax Media joins together two of the finest, most respected videogame developers in the world, combining the first person shooter (FPS) expertise of id Software with acclaimed role playing game (RPG) developer Bethesda Game Studios – creators of the 2008 Game of the Year, Fallout 3, and the 2006 Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Bethesda Softworks will publish the titles of id Software other than upcoming releases previously committed to other publishers.

Founded in 1991, id Software established itself as an industry leader with some of the best-selling and most critically acclaimed video games of all time. id Software created the original first-person shooter, Wolfenstein 3D, and subsequently set new standards in the genre with the blockbuster releases of its DOOM and QUAKE titles. In addition, id Software developed cutting edge, proprietary technology with the id Tech engine which powers many notable FPS titles, and continues to make great advances in game technology under the direction of John Carmack, one of the country’s technology leaders and a member of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS) Hall of Fame.

Todd Hollenshead, CEO of id Software, commented on the transaction: “This was a unique opportunity to team with a smart, sophisticated publisher like Bethesda Softworks where the interests of the studio and the publisher will be fully aligned in the development and marketing of our titles. In addition, we will now have financial and business resources to support the future growth of id Software, a huge advantage which will result in more and even better games for our fans.”

id Software will continue to operate as a studio under the direction of its founder, John Carmack. No changes will be made in the operations of id Software in the development of its games. All the principals at id Software have signed long-term employment contracts, assuring they will continue in their roles developing games at the studio.

“This puts id Software in a wonderful position going forward,” said John Carmack, who will continue to serve in his current role as Technical Director. “We will now be able to grow and extend all of our franchises under one roof, leveraging our capabilities across multiple teams while enabling forward looking research to be done in the service of all of them. We will be bigger and stronger, as we recruit the best talent to help us build the landmark games of the future. As trite as it may be for me to say that I am extremely pleased and excited about this deal, I am.”

Robert Altman, the founder, Chairman & CEO of ZeniMax Media stated, “We, along with many others, consider id Software to be among the finest game studios in the world, with extraordinary design, artistic and technical capabilities. They have demonstrated, repeatedly, that rare ability to create franchise properties that are critical and commercial successes. Our intention is to make sure id Software will continue to do what they do best – make AAA games. Our role will be to provide publisher support through Bethesda Softworks and give id Software the resources it needs to grow and expand.”

ZeniMax Media Inc, which is privately held, was founded in 1999 to create quality interactive entertainment products to meet the growing worldwide demand. The Company is headquartered in Rockville, MD and maintains offices in Hunt Valley, MD, London and Tokyo. Among its wholly owned subsidiaries are Bethesda Softworks, a premier publisher of video games, Vir2L Studios which develops games for the casual market, and ZeniMax Online Studios, a studio dedicated to massively multi-player online games (MMOG).

Bethesda Game Studios, the development group at ZeniMax Media, is one of the top video game studios in the world. Its most recent release, Fallout 3, was the 2008 winner of more than 60 Game of the Year awards, including The Associated Press, Official Xbox Magazine, Yahoo, PC Gamer, IGN, Game Critics Awards, Game Developer Choice Awards, and Gamespy. Bethesda also created the 2006 PC and Xbox 360® Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, and the 2002 PC and Xbox® Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Bethesda Game Studios has created 2 of the 10 best games of all time, Fallout 3 and Oblivion, on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation® 3 platforms, as reported by the industry scoring system found at http://www.metacritic.com and http://www.gamerankings.com.

Click here to return to Zenimax.com

MAINGEAR Unveils Luxury Gaming PC for the Living Room

computer

MAINGEAR Computers, award-winning builders of high performance custom computers for PC gamers and enthusiasts, is proud to announce the Axess HD Gamer, a luxury gaming PC that brings high end gaming to the living room.  Built into a sleek, low profile, aluminum HTPC form factor with an acrylic trim, the Axess HD was designed to integrate seamlessly into any home theater set up with existing A/V components.

The impressive list of hardware for the Axess HD includes a powerful Core i7  processor combined with dual 9800 GT video cards in SLI to deliver a stunningly visual1080p experience.  MAINGEAR also teamed up with NVIDIA to integrate GeForce 3D Vision so that gamers with Mitsubishi or Samsung desktop LCDs can experience an unparalleled 3D gaming experience.

MAINGEAR further enhances the luxurious home theater gaming experience by being the first company to offer the Phantom Lapboard, a unique keyboard that liberates users from desktop settings through an innovative 360-degree rotating design.  The Axess HD Gamer also offers cutting edge media center capabilities including 7 channel pre amplified audio, Blu Ray and DVD Movies, Music, Home Videos, HD TV, Internet TV, based on Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium which also provides access to Netflix online streaming through the Media Center interface.

 The Axess HD Gamer was conceived to deliver unsurpassed gaming performance fused with advanced media center capabilities all contained within a low profile case, making it the perfect cornerstone for any home theater environment said Wallace Santos, CEO and Founder of MAINGEAR.  A lot of the media centers currently on the market don’t specifically address the PC Gamer and we want to give our customers a solution to game from the comfort of the living room without sacrificing quality or performance.

 “We’re thrilled that MAINGEAR is providing a Games for Windows solution that complements the wide range of media functionality that Windows Vista Media Center already provides,”  said Megan Both, Snr. Director of OEM Sales at Microsoft.  “This high performance 3D gaming system combined with the advanced functionality of Windows Media Center make the Axess HD Gamer a phenomenal option for the home theater enthusiast as well as the avid gamer.” Gamers can purchase the Axess HD Gamer at MAINGEAR’s Web site www.maingear.com or order by phone at (888-MAINGEAR).  The base price is $1,799.  Axess HD Gamer comes with MAINGEAR’s standard 14 month warranty and is backed by the best in-house support team in the country.

 

U.S. ARMY LAUNCHES AMERICA’S ARMY 3 PC ACTION GAME

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The U.S. Army today launched America’s Army 3, the only action game that delivers an authentic and entertaining Army experience by reflecting the training, technology, actions, and career advancement of a Soldier within an exciting, free game experience. Players can download the teen-rated game from Steam (www.americasarmy.com/steam), as well as from partners listed at the America’s Army website (www.americasarmy.com). As with previous versions of America‘s Army, AA3 will be constantly updated to include new features and missions and to highlight new technologies being incorporated in today’s Army.

In America‘s Army 3, Every Detail CountsTM and as a result, the game has more authentic military elements including training, technology, weapons, and audio than any other military game. Built on Unreal Engine 3, AA3 delivers stunningly realistic environments, lighting effects, animations, and team-based experiences so that America’s Army players can experience how Soldiers train, live, and advance in the Army. Players are bound by Rules of Engagement (ROE) and gain experience as they navigate challenges in team-based, multiplayer, force-on-force operations. In the game, a player’s actions and demonstrated Army values are integral to successful mission accomplishment and affect a player’s career progression.

The game is launching with five different environments, each with three different mission scenario options for a total of 15 different map/mission combinations. Initially, the core of the gameplay focuses on an Infantry Soldier (11B). Players first complete Basic Combat Training and then progress to Advanced Individual Training for a variety of specialized roles that the Infantry Soldier performs, such as Advanced Rifleman, Automatic Rifleman, Squad Designated Marksman, and Grenadier. This advanced training allows players to unlock new abilities and gear, customize their gear and equipment loads, increase their in-game skill level, and progress in their Army careers.

The America‘s Army 3 game offers a number of new features including:

  • New Scoring System – In this new Army values-based scoring system, a player’s “Honor” score is a combination of his/her scores from subcategories that represent the seven core Army Values: Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless-Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage. The values are matched with certain game behaviors, and demonstrating these values contributes to successful gameplay and accomplishments. For example, personal courage can be demonstrated by accomplishing the mission objectives even if the player is the last teammate to remain in the game. Selfless service is demonstrated by aiding an injured Soldier even though it may put the player in harm’s way. Other players will be able to select teammates based on their Soldier profiles, which reflect how players have progressed in the game as well as their player roles/gameplay style preferences.
  • Detailed StatisticsAA3’s extremely detailed statistics give players immediate feedback at the end of rounds and matches in online play, in addition to summarizing player behaviors. Players can accrue a number of stats including marksmanship accuracy; time played; time played by class role; total score; rounds won, lost, and survived; objectives captured, and teammates treated as a combat lifesaver. Players can also monitor where their hits are landing on other players, as well as where they are taking hits. These statistics are used to drive a player achievement system through which players can earn a variety of awards including coins, ribbons, and medals.
  • Character Movements – In addition to basic movements such as running, sprinting, and crouching, the game supports tactical and combat movement types. A tactical movement is a more methodical, slower movement that reduces the noise associated with the player’s motion. The combat movement is louder but faster. Combat movements include the combat roll, a full roll either to the left or to the right in the prone position, the combat slide in which players can slide into a crouch position from a sprint, and the combat dive in which players dive face first into a prone position. These movements enable players to evade the enemy or better position themselves to incapacitate the enemy. When moving throughout the maps, players can vault (place a foot on the object and leap or climb over it) as well as mantle (place a hand down to get over larger objects than the vault would support).
  • Player Damage Model – The player damage system has a high level of detail that tracks a number of the player’s health metrics and divides the player’s body into distinct areas that can each be damaged separately. The type and location of a player’s injury will affect the player’s abilities. For example, injuries in the lower body, such as the legs, will slow the player down, while injuries in the upper body, such as the torso and arms, will hinder accuracy but not movement speed. When players are affected by injuries they can be revived in some cases by their teammates. All players will have Combat Life Saving (CLS) training as part of Basic Combat Training so they can assist and stabilize an injured or incapacitated teammate. However, players must make the right decisions about medical treatment in order to heal, and not hurt, the injured player.
  • Mission Planning – Squad and Fire Team leaders now have strategic choices to make before a mission. The Squad Leader will assign the fire teams to an objective, and the Fire Team leaders will in turn determine where on the map their fire team will spawn. The individual Soldiers will make decisions about whether they carry heavy, medium, or light ammunition loads. The flexibility of mission preplanning gives players a variety of customization options and greater replayability.
  • Authenticity of Weapons and Weapons Effects
    Players can customize their weapon configuration and load (gear) with attachable modifications as well as select the type and number of ammunition cartridges and grenades they’ll need to accomplish their mission. These choices affect gameplay, as heavy loads negatively affect speed and endurance while lighter loads negatively affect fire power. The game’s ballistics models are also highly detailed. Bullets in the game operate as they would in real life, requiring players to be aware of their surroundings. The game demonstrates a realistic interaction between bullets and materials, allowing penetration through wood and drywall and ricochets off metal and stone. Even the material that a bullet ricochets off will create different angles of bullet movement. In this reactive environment, players will have to quickly learn the difference between cover and concealment.
  • Lighting and Sound – The development team paid great attention to the realism of the lighting and sounds within the America‘s Army 3 game to make them part of tactical gameplay. Players can use high fidelity audio clues to assess a combat situation. For example, they can determine the proximity of the bullet to their location based on the sound it makes. If the bullet is in close proximity to the player, the player will hear an explosive sound from the sonic boom that the bullet makes as it whizzes by the player. If the bullet is farther away, the player will hear the muzzle shot and the cavitation sounds the bullet makes as it echoes in the distance. These sounds were recorded in a live-fire scenario by the developers with the help of Army Subject Matter Experts. Sound occlusion and reverberation are other game features that make the AA3 audio experience more realistic than any other military game.

The AA3 team used Illuminate Lab’s Beast Lighting Solution to enhance the visual quality of the game. Beast is a global illumination package that, coupled with America’s Army, allowed the developers to design more realistic lighting and shadowing within the game. The realistic environments in AA3 reproduce the natural effects that occur when lighting reflects and bounces off materials and characters in the virtual world, making camouflage very important for the Soldier in the game. AA3’s lighting also simulates realistic eye adjustments when a player moves from indoors (dark areas) to outside (lighter areas) and vice versa.

These sound and light effects work together in situations, such as when a player throws a grenade in a small enclosed area and players who are close to the grenade’s point of impact feel the effects of overpressure, which can cause ear ringing, dizziness, and pain. A flash bang can cause the player to experience temporary blindness and hearing loss. Together, the high fidelity sound and lighting contribute to the overall realism and authenticity of AA3.

Players can also enjoy America’s Army – The Graphic Novel, a free online graphic novel based on America‘s Army 3. The graphic novel, which can be easily viewed without download, is live on the America’s Army website (www.americasarmy.com/graphicnovel/). America’s Army – The Graphic Novel begins at the start of a conflict with a story arc from the perspective of a Soldier who is a member of a U.S. Army Long Range Surveillance (LRS) team, and will intertwine that Soldier’s story along with the stories of others Soldiers whose occupational specialties include Military Intelligence, Medic, UAV Operator, Infantryman, and Helicopter Pilot. Through the episodic releases of the graphic novel, viewers will discover the main Soldiers’ stories and accompany them on missions as they experience the Army’s technologies and equipment, Army Values, different MOSs and Army life.

Alienware’s M17x E3 first look and hands on.

AWM17X (4)

Alienware stylin

Alienware has long been a huge name in high end PC Gaming and their M17x continues to impress.   Dual GTX 280m Video Processors  and Core 2 Quad processor and up to 8GB of memory make this a formidable laptop gaming machine.   The screen on the Demo units at E3 was impressive very crisp and smooth.

The styling of the units was very nice quite slick without looking like a toy. The Aluminum casing was light and strong plus with the added bonus of being efficient at dissipating heat which was a concern I had with all that heavy duty hardware the system was sporting.

One of the features i was a bit leery about was the light up keyboard.  I’ll admit my main machine has a light up keyboard but many people are either distracted or think it looks tacky.  Alienware appears to have done something quite different.  The AlienFX system allows you to change to a range of colors and customize your system’s look.

Additionally a new feature they have added was the capability to interface with the games for visual cues.  I spoke with Bryan A de Zayas while demoing a game that flashed the keyboard to different colors when a collision occurres.   He said this will be part of an API Alienware will be licencing so hopefully we will be seeing more of this type of features in future games.  The keyboard itself though was quite smooth and responsive and did not feel squishy or delicate.  An external mouse of course will be needed but that is pretty much standard across any laptop.

AWM17X (5)Overall the M17X is a nice powerful system .  It has the guts to play any current games smoothly and nice beautiful display for multimedia applications.Although it is a bit bulky and  heavy and carrying it around all day everyday would get a bit tiring   It is nice too look at with alienware’s Distinctive styling, and the customizable lights and color schemes.  This is a system I would love to carry into a LAN party or have for gaming either at home.

— Mario Garcia

Alienware (2)

The Alienware security has spotted me !!!

Mountain Dew WoW promotion battle bot pets go live

Mountain dew has partnered with blizzard to promote their new gamer fuel drinks. choose the alliance or the horde and earn points for prizes and stuff

One of the things you get is a free battle bot pet i’ll have to wait till i get home to see what it does but pets are kewl

here is my shameless promotion too sorry  but i’m a sucker for pets 🙂

– Mario Garcia

DoTA – Warcraft III’s Fountain of Youth

by Anthony (Rice King) Rice

The average lifetime for games is roughly a year. For particularly good games with strong re-playability, multiplayer, and Evolution factor it may be longer; for games such as X-blades and Golden Axe: Beastrider, it may be a matter of days. It is very rare that a game lasts 7 years and is still increasing in gamer base. It is even rarer that the main gamer base of a game is simply playing one map, which is actually a Mod. Warcraft III Mods, specifically the Mod DoTA (Defence of the Ancients), have helped Warcraft III live for 7 years and will help it survive for years to come.

A composited map of the latest DoTA Map

A composite version of the latest DoTA Map

DoTA is a RPG/Strategy game where you have two sides that are vying for control over the land, the Sentinel and the Scourge. Each side can have a maximum of five players. There are three lanes that connect the bases (see above illustration), and periodically NPC’s (known as creeps) get sent down the lanes from each base to fight for their team. The point of the game is to push the creeps and enemy heroes back to their base and destroy their main building. You can only do this after destroying the towers in a lane all the way through to their main building.

Dota Load Screen

Dota Load Screen

One thing that makes DoTA so popular is its always increasing complexity. As of writing this, there are currently 93 Heroes, 54 Items, and 56 Recipes. Recipes basically need a combination of 2 or more items in order to concoct a better item. This makes it advanced and challenging enough to make it always fun. With so many different possible combinations of items there is always room to try new strategies with different heroes. Another great thing about this game is that the learning curve isn’t too steep. This is one of the main reasons why the user base is growing constantly. The controls are that of a normal strategy game, which is comfortable for many gamers. After only a few games, new players can get the gist of the main strategies and get the hang of how recipes work. Many WoW players say that the game is similar to BattleGrounds, the PvP areas in WoW. This is also another reason why DoTA is so popular; WoW players can take a break from leveling and try to duke it out in a more relaxed brawlfest. The complexity of gameplay, the challenge, the moderate learning curve, and the familiarity make DoTA a blast for many gamers.

Screenshot from DoTA

Screenshot from DoTA

Of all the games that came out in 2002, only one can stand above the rubble and claim victory for having the longest and best run. Warcraft III has DoTA to thank for its success in the latter years of its popularity. As long as there are developers creating new items and heroes, there will always be an interest in DoTA, and therefore the gamer base will ever increase.