Around the web: Pre-E3 Edition

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With E3 next week (!!!), and already there’s several sites already looking forward to the Bethesda Softworks’ games they’ll be seeing next week.

  • VentureBeat lists RAGE as their #1 Most Anticipated Game of the Show.
  • GamePro has New Vegas in their Games of E3 feature.
  • GamesRadar has Hunted: The Demon’s Forge as one of their games to watch.
  • USA Today Game Hunters looks ahead to Fallout: New Vegas, RAGE, and Brink.
  • In preparation for the show, Kotaku puts Hunted and Fallout: New Vegas in their list of RPGs, while including RAGE and Brink in their list of FPS games.
  • 411Mania predicts Fallout: New Vegas will look “absolutely insane”, while GameFancier ranks the game as one of the top 10 titles for the show.
  • Strategy Informer has a pre-E3 preview up for RAGE.
  • EmpireStateGamer interviews Brink Creative Director Richard Ham.

The last two weeks on Giant Bomb’s Bombcast (June 1st & June 8th) feature discussion on our recent release of DOOM II on Xbox LIVE Arcade. To listen in the the discussion, tune in at the four-minute mark for the June 1st episode, and fast forward to the 42-minute mark on the June 8th episode.

For reviews on DOOM II, check out reviews at the following sites.

Finally, don’t forget to watch GameTrailers TV tonight at 11PM to see the premiere of our E3 2010 trailer for Fallout: New Vegas.

Have a great weekend!

Around the Web II: XBLA Edition

The holiday weekend is over, the calm before the storm ended. Hell on Earth has arrived, and E3 hasn’t even begun.

Yes, DOOM II was released from its demonic portal on XBLA this week, packing in a brand-new campaign and co-op/multiplayer support. Reviews rolled in from Digital Chumps, GamersDailyNews, AngryBananas, CapsuleComputers, 360sync, GamersWithCasts, GoFanboy, Bitmob, NxtGamer, Original Gamer, Bitmob, XXLGaming, GamerDad, XXLGaming, and VGRevolution. Give ‘em a read, or just get fragging — either way.

MSN determined the top 50 video games of all time, and luckily we made the list three times with Oblivion, DOOM and Fallout 3. A similar top-50 list from Empire Online examines the best characters of gaming, including Vault Boy. Alucard made it too. He was great in Castlevania III.

In Fallout news, ScrewAttack presented the Top 10 Reasons Why Fallout New Vegas Will Rule. Chris Williams’ essay on retro settings in gaming, “You Say Apocalypse, I Say Retro-chic,” includes a hefty amount of Fallout 3 discussion.

Finally, we’ve got four previews (one for each of our  games heading to our E3 booth): PlayStation Lifestyle checks out Brink, Atomic Gamer gets down with RAGE, Resume Play reports on Fallout: New Vegas, and OXM explores Hunted.

Less than two weeks to go. Hang on.

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Weekend Update

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Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. Before heading out, I thought I’d share some previews, reviews, and more for our titles.

The latest edition of online magazine PCGZine features previews for Hunted, RAGE, Fallout: New Vegas and Brink. In addition to the previews, they also caught up with Brink’s Creative Director, Richard Ham, for a three-page interview.

For more with Richard Ham, head to Sarcastic Gamer. Here’s a quick look…

SG: I like Brink’s art style, it has a familiar look while still looking distinctive. What made you choose this art style?

Richard Ham: Olivier, our Art Director, had actually experimented with Hyperrealism (a modern art movement) in a title he’d previously worked on. His idea, when he started at Splash, was that since you’re so often shooting at guys from a distance, why not exaggerate features of the characters so they really “pop”.

Earlier this week we let you know that DOOM II is now available on Xbox LIVE Arcade. You can purchase the game for 800 Microsoft points, or download the demo for free. For more on the game, check out reviews at IGN and Game.Shard — as well as 10 minutes of gameplay footage at Eurogamer.

In Fallout: New Vegas news, Gamers’ Guide to Life has announced they’re taking your questions for an upcoming community interview. And if you’re wondering, we haven’t forgotten about the questions you’ve submitted to us… more on that in the coming weeks.

If you’re wondering where the above image of Vault Boy came from, it was created by CreativeRhino for Sony’s kart racer — ModNation Racers. See more of the cool characters created by community members at IGN.

DOOM II interview

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16 years after id Software released DOOM II on PC, the game is now available on Xbox LIVE. This week we caught up with Brandon James, President of Nerve Software (the team responsible for bringing the game to LIVE) to learn more about what you can expect from this version of the classic FPS.

DOOM II features a new episode; can you talk about how this came about?

When we approached id about doing DOOM II for XBLA, we wanted to add significant new content to the title that would appeal to those who have played the original DOOM II and for players new to the franchise. A lot of the designers at Nerve started out in the industry by creating levels for DOOM and DOOM II, so we knew our away around the editor and what it takes to create a compelling experience in the world of DOOM.

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DOOM II on Xbox LIVE Arcade

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Beginning today, DOOM II is available for download via Xbox LIVE Arcade!

DOOM II expanded upon the white-knuckle excitement of the original DOOM with an amazing assortment of additional weapons, monsters, and carnage-filled environments. With the XBLA version, you’re now able to download and relive all of the heart-pounding action of this classic PC title with brand-new elements, including:

  • Legendary weapons: Arm yourself with the legendary weapons from the original DOOM, as well as the Super Shotgun.
  • New enemies and levels: Experience DOOM like never before, with six new enemies and 32 new levels. Play it alone or invite a friend to play in co-op mode via split screen or Xbox LIVE.
  • Bonus chapter: Brave the never-before-seen bonus chapter, No Rest for the Living, an Xbox LIVE Arcade exclusive.
  • Deathmatch: Jump into intense deathmatch action with up to four players via split screen or over Xbox LIVE.
  • Avatar extras: Outfit your Avatar with the old-school DOOM II T-Shirt or the full-body DOOM Marine uniform.
  • Xbox LIVE Achievements
  • HD visuals
  • 5.1 surround sound

Whether you’re looking for nostalgia, or ready to experience the game for the first time, you can purchase DOOM II here for 800 Microsoft Points. If you want to discuss the game, check out the community forum on Xbox.com.

DOOM Level Demakes BioShock’s Arcadia

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BioShock and BioShock 2 developer J.P. LeBreton is a big DOOM fan. So big, in fact, that he celebrated the recent release of BioShock 2 by remaking BioShock’s lush “Arcadia” level in DOOM II. Says he:

Typically when you ship a big game you get some time off to relax, take a step back and enjoy life. Of course, I had to do something very silly with some of this time. So I did a remake of a BioShock level for… wait for it… Doom 2.

You can read more about the interesting level, and download it, on LeBreton’s blog. Also worth reading is LeBreton’s enlightening post on some of DOOM’s less obvious qualities.

Bethidsoft Makes PCGamer’s Top 100

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The editors over at PCGamer put up their annual “Top 100 Games of All Time” list today.

The democratically-determined list features several games developed by Bethesda and id; Oblivion and Fallout 3 both made the top 10, while Quake III: Arena and DOOM II cracked the top 30. Check the whole deal out here.

Those interested in voting for the reader-selected top 100 can do so through this link. Luckily, you don’t need to put together your own 100-game list to participate.

Weekend Update

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Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. While I wait for Michigan and Penn State to kick off, I thought I’d share some coverage I’ve seen online in the last week.

With Halloween just a week away, Kotaku is sharing fan-made Jack-O-Lanterns — including the one you see above of Vault Boy. If you happen to create one based on one of our games, be sure to shoot us an email.

Speaking of Kotaku, they posted information on a new community project called The Wasteland Commentaries. It’s purpose is for fans to “create an audio commentary track for Fallout 3 that is accessible in-game via audio holotapes. If successful the Wasteland Commentaries will take some discussions of the game into the spaces that inspired them and provide greater context for reflection.” Sounds cool. To read more about the project, head here.

On the print side, Game Informer #199 (complete with a brand new look) has an article called The Lore Masters, which includes Senior Game Designer Kurt Kuhlmann discussing the lore of The Elder Scrolls, as well as its effect on Greg Keyes writing The Infernal City. Check out the issue on newsstands now.

In id Software news, Digital Battle shares their list of 20 games to look forward to in 2010 — a list which includes RAGE. Meanwhile, Gaming Bolt counts down the Top 20 Greatest FPS Games with three id games making the list — Wolfenstein (#16), Quake (#7), and DOOM 2 (#5). To read the whole list, check out parts 1 and 2.

Finally, through my Google Alerts, I found this column at The Whitworthian, which looks back at The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Here’s an excerpt:

“The modding community for the Elder Scrolls games is huge and going strong. Almost anything that’s in the game can be modified, expanded, or completely removed, and nearly anything that can be dreamed up can be added in. My copy of “Morrowind” is currently running something like 50 mods, three or four of which are my own.”

That’s all for now.

Around the web: More reviews for WET

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In this “Around the web,” we look at some the latest reviews for WET, plus coverage for Brink, id Software, and even a look back at Daggerfall.

With WET reviews, we begin at Planet Xbox 360, where Tony DaSilva reviewed the game. Here’s a snippet of his review, where he scored the game an 8.5/10:

“With 12 chapters in its campaign, WET offers up a solid play through with consistent action. As for the story, it’s outlandish, but purposely so. Like I said, we’re in a B movie here, and we all know how ridiculous B movies are.”

Elsewhere, Canada’s own GameFocus awarded WET their Editor’s Choice award saying, “Rubi and WET totally rock.”

More WET reviews and more after the break.

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PAX 09 Details

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PAX is just over a week away! At this year’s show, our lineup will include hourly, live demonstrations of Brink, as well as a chance to go hands-on with our Fall releases — WET and Rogue Warrior. Additionally, we’ll have playable builds of upcoming Xbox Live Arcade titles — Doom II and Quake Arena Arcade. We’ll also have giveaways at the booth, including Brink t-shirts and posters for Rogue Warrior and WET.

If you’re planning on attending PAX, here’s the scheduled hours our booth will be open:

Friday, 9/4: 10:00am – 7:00pm
Saturday, 9/5: 10:00am – 6:00pm
Sunday, 9/6: 10:00am – 6:00pm

If you’re looking to check out Brink, the presentations will start at the top of the hour and begin at 10 am each day. The last demo on Friday begins at 6 pm; on Saturday and Sunday the final demo will be at 5 pm.

For more details on PAX 09, visit the official site. Hope to see you at the show!