The world's biggest videogame publisher is placing some small bets on new ideas.
Though it's not yet talking officially about the project, Electronic Arts has started a division called Blueprint, focused on developing, at low cost, original intellectual property that can spread across multiple media.
Neil Young, the former head of EA's Los Angeles studio, is heading EA Blueprint.
"We focus on creating IP in new ways for our media and finding smart ways to spread it across the media landscape," Young said at an EA-sponsored event during the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.
EA's biggest successes have been long-running franchises such as "Madden NFL" and "The Sims," as well as big Hollywood licenses like as "Harry Potter."
But the publisher has created very few successful new properties in the past several years. That's one of the key reasons behind its attempt to purchase Take-Two Interactive, which would bring in valuable franchises including "Grand Theft Auto."
- EA prend conscience de l'importance de créer des IPs, suite au fait que de nombreux succès commerciaux cette année ont été de nouvelles IP (d'Uncharted à Gear Of Wars, de Bioshock à Portal, d'Heavenly Sword à Mass Effect...). Les nouvelles IP ont la côte ^_^
- EA reconnait qu'il y a un problème dans le pipeline de production des jeux nouvelles génération. Soyons clair: 4 ans de production pour un jeu "next gen" - même si c'est pour produire des titres merveilleux - n'est pas une position tenable pour l'industrie.
Pas mal ^_^
Havok™, the premier provider of interactive software and services to digital creators in the games and movie industries, today announced that the company will offer the PC version of its award-winning physics and animation software product - Havok Complete - for download free of charge.
Available for non-commercial use, Havok Complete for the PC will be freely downloadable in May 2008.
Havok's core platform, Havok Complete combines the industry-leading Havok Physics engine and Havok Animation, the company's premier character animation solution. Havok Complete is already the most popular solution in the cross-platform AAA games market, featuring technology used in over 200 games.
By making Havok Complete for the PC freely downloadable, Havok will further build on its leading position by completely removing the barriers to entry for the large number of independent developers, academic institutions and enthusiasts in the PC space.
"Havok has an excellent revenue base generated by sales of our three products across multiple platforms and into multiple industries," said David O'Meara, Managing Director at Havok. "This enables us to make an industry-changing move and opens up a much broader market for products such as Havok Behavior - and our new products Havok Cloth and Havok Destruction - that really come alive when adopted on top of our core platform, Havok Complete."
Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios president Phil Harrison has announced his formal resignation from the company, due to go into effect on February 29. Sony officially broke word of his resignation this morning.
Taking his place will be SCEI president and group CEO Kazuo Hirai, who will assume Harrison's duties on top of his own. It's unknown at the moment whether Sony will begin seeking out a replacement for Harrison, or whether Hirai's full-time responsibilities will engulf those of the former Worldwide Studios president.
Apparently, it didn't take them very long to consider Electronic Arts' somewhat hostile buyout proposal -- Take-Two's Board of Directors just responded to the offer with a press release of their own, stating that EA CEO John Riccitiello's proposal was "inadequate in multiple respects and not in the best interests of Take-Two's stockholders."
While EA's proposal listed Grand Theft Auto IV as a primary reason for the merger, as Riccitiello claimed EA could lend their help during the game's quickly approaching release, Strauss Zelnick, Take-Two's executive chairman, listed GTAIV as the primary reason why they wouldn't want to merge at this point in time, fully expecting to increase their overall value when the game hits store shelves come April 29.
- Take Two est une cible facile au sens où ils ont régulièrement des petits souçis financier. En plus, ils sont pas Français, donc pas de gouvernement dans les pattes comme avec un certain Ubisoft ;-)
- Non seulement GTA IV va cartonner, mais surtout, il est pas encore sorti. Parce ce que s'il a le succès escompté, TT sera d'autant plus cher à acheter (comme le précédent Assasins Creed, qui permet aujourd'hui à Ubi de valoir d'autant plus).
- Enfin, Activision-Blizzard numéro un ? C'est une situation absolument insupportable...
...Halo 3 made $300 million, but at $50 copy that means it's only making one-tenth of the Lord of the Rings audience. "Do you really think a glowing dagger that can detect Orcs or a fucking +5 rope is what moved people? What people care about is that Frodo trusts Sam ... It doesn't surprise me that the most meaningful relationship we had in a AAA title this year is with a fucking cube." That last comment drew massive applaud and laughter...."When I'm in games I have all the info and feedback I need, I have superhero skills ... it's just better than real life." McGonigal explains she has been spending the last year doing research on happiness, deeming it not a warm puppy. Instead, McGonigal lays out a four-point happiness list:
- Satisfying work to do
- The experience of being good at something
- Time spent with people we like
- The chance to be a part of something bigger"What the hell does any of this better but games? Nothing," she said. "Games are the ultimate happiness engine, and you [the game industry] are in the happiness business." McGonigal noted that it took them until 1930 that soap can be used to kill germs. For depression and isolation, perhaps games can be the same fix....
What Insomniac has decided to do was to share and distribute their own technology throughout the industry, in turn encouraging others to share their own tech. The Nocturnal Initiative is not, they stress, a game engine. There will be no snarky comments from Mark Rein about Insomniac stepping on Epic's toes as the program is designed to help game development peers avoid rewriting some of the basics.
"Rewriting libraries is a waste of time," said Andy Burke, tools group lead at Insomniac, and the gang on the software side hopes that releasing code into the wild, code that comes with a "liberal" open source license, fosters feedback and may encourage others to share their own work. That can lead to better games, they hope.
The first batch of code is now available at the Nocturnal Initiative web site, in easy to read Wiki format, for developers who are interested in the program. They may be interested to learn that this isn't just something that's been whipped up for good PR, this is code that's being used in production, used in development in titles like Ratchet & Clank Future and Resistance 2.
Achievements: As of today, Xbox 360 users have earned themselves over one billion achievements. Not points. Achievements.
Xbox Live Marketplace: The XBL Marketplace? More like XBL money-printing machine. 360 users have spent over $250 million on DLC since the console's launch, which when you consider the minimal expenses related to content is a massive turnover for both Microsoft and anyone else who has DLC on the service.
Rock Band: There's been just over three million Rock Band downloads on Xbox Live alone since the game launched. For a $169 dollar game available only in North America, that's a lot.
Si 2007 a été une année charnière, 2008 promet d'être un festival. Sérieusement, si j'ai déjà du mal à trouver le temps d'éculer les jeux sortis l'an dernier (et je ne parle pas de ma bibliothèque PS2), le planning de sorties pour l'an qui vient me donne le vertige ^_^
Cette vidéo en liste 10 (les plus hypes), mais je pourrai aisément en rajouter le triple, si tant est que la production est assez incroyable ces dernières années.
Un bémol toutefois, certains jeux dans cette liste ont quand même peu de chance de voir le jour cette année (en Europe en tout cas) - FFXIII et Fallout III par exemple...
Je ne révèlerai rien en disant que la PS3 n'est pas la plateforme la plus accessible de prime abord. C'est un problème dont Sony a une conscience aigüe, et la préoccupation principale derrière l'évolution des outils sur la plateforme.
Dernier venu en date, Phyre est un moteur graphique optimisée pour la PS3, mais disponible également gratuitement sur PC et potentiellement sur 360 (à vérifier). L'idée est simple: amener les studios à investir plus rapidement et à moindre cout sur la console, même pour des jeux cross platforme.
A ce titre, Phyre n'est donc pas le XNA de la PS3, juste un tool de plus dans l'arcenal de Sony. Reste à savoir comment ce produit va évoluer dans le futur...
But why make it potentially easier to make games on a competing console? Well, it's undeniable that developers are increasingly focused on multiplatform development. It's been rather commonplace for developers to neglect PS3 with inferior and oftentimes delayed versions of multiplatform games.
With PhyreEngine, Sony is making a much more attractive plea: make games on PS3 first, guaranteeing high quality games that will not only match their 360 counterparts, but in many cases can exceed them. Sony's message is clear: start games on the PS3, and they will be better for both PS3 and 360 owners. It appears to us that PhyreEngine is a crucial part of that plan.
[ Joystiq ]
Alerte, attaque "Kawaï" ^_^