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Updated: 2 hours 34 min ago

Candy Crush tempts investors with sweet success

Fri, 02/21/2014 - 6:27am

Candy Crush is out to tempt investors with the sweet taste of success while avoiding the sourness left in the mouths of those who bit into social game maker Zynga. King Digital Entertainment, the developer behind the wildly addictive puzzle game, said this week that Candy Crush is seeking a listing on the New York Stock Exchange. The news set the Internet abuzz with chatter from those crowing about the mobile game's dizzying success and from the cynical hearkening back to the lackluster fate of Farmville maker Zynga. Zynga pioneered online social gaming at a time when Facebook was center stage and got caught on its heels when players enthralled by free play on smartphones or tablets flitted away from the San Francisco-based company's titles.


It’s official: Xbox One Media Remote will launch in March for $24.99

Thu, 02/20/2014 - 9:15pm
The newest accessory for the Xbox One has been made official in a post today on the Xbox Wire. The Xbox One Media Remote is an accessory that should help ease the transition from cable box to game console for the uninitiated consumers who want to see what all the fuss is about. With the new remote, you will no longer have to depend on voice commands or an Xbox One controller to quickly navigate video playback of Blu-rays or streaming videos. The remote appeared out of nowhere on Amazon last week, and although the price was incorrect, the other details seem to have been spot on. Microsoft’s media remote will feature backlit buttons and a silicone finish, as well

Microsoft gives select Xbox One owners a glimpse of the future

Thu, 02/20/2014 - 5:08pm
Microsoft just released the first major update for the Xbox One last week, but if you’d like to get your hands on the next update before anyone else, check your Xbox Live messages. Microsoft announced today on the Xbox Wire that select Xbox Live members will be invited to test the update before it rolls out to the public, giving Microsoft a chance to gather feedback and correct any mistakes. If you are chosen to participate, you will receive a token on Xbox Live that you can register to receive the update next week. Participants will be given access to a private forum where they will be able to share their experiences with the update, give feedback and decide whether

Here’s how Microsoft stole the biggest game of 2014 for the Xbox One

Thu, 02/20/2014 - 2:13pm
Respawn Entertainment astonished everyone at E3 last year with the unveiling of Titanfall, a first-person shooter with an emphasis on traversal and giant mechs. The game had members of the press falling over each other to express their excitement, which made Microsoft’s exclusivity deal all the more impressive. At some point during the development of the multiplatform title from the team behind the most popular Call of Duty games of all time, Microsoft swooped in and stole the game away from the PlayStation consoles. So how did they do it? According to industry leaker and NeoGAF forumgoer Pete Dodd, Respawn Entertainment and EA simply thought the domination of the Xbox One was a foregone conclusion. “The vast majority of the industry

No DICE: The Embarrassing Insecurity (and Meaninglessness) of the ‘Oscars of Video Games’

Thu, 02/20/2014 - 10:13am
Here are a few things that are true about the DICE Awards, held last week in Las Vegas and promoted as “The Oscars of Video Games.” There is an award given for “Best Downloadable Game,” a category which makes no sense in an era when literally every game can and is downloaded. You have an award show even more pointless than the Oscars. To understand why that title, “The Oscars of Video Games,” is so important to the industry as a whole, one must first understand the deep inferiority complex that runs throughout the video gaming world.

Big-name developer thinks Xbox One resolution debate is ‘tedious’

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 3:41pm
Microsoft has been receiving a great deal of grief recently for the seemingly impaired visual quality of some upcoming multiplatform releases on the Xbox One, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes chief among them. Although the contrast is exceedingly mild, Xbox One owners understandably want the visuals in their games to match those of the PlayStation 4, but according to Total Xbox, Daniel Windfeld Schmidt, lead level designer on the upcoming multiplatform title Thief, thinks the issue is only temporary. “I think it’s going to auto-balance in a while,” said Schmidt. ”As soon as you start playing the game, it’s going to be much more about ‘oh, how do you do this thing’ or ‘oh, you got that thing’ — that’s the

Video: In-depth comparison shows how much better Metal Gear Solid V looks on PS4 vs. Xbox One

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 1:19pm
Owners of Microsoft’s new Xbox One already have several awesome games to choose from, and there are plenty more coming down the road. The console also includes a next-generation Kinect sensor that will potentially take motion and voice control integration to the next level. But while Microsoft chose to focus on a wider range of functionality and cloud processing support, Sony packed more power into its box. As a result, some early games will be available on the PlayStation 4 with visual quality that the Xbox One simply doesn’t match. One such example, as it turns out, is Konami’s hotly anticipated title Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes. We covered some preliminary comparison shots that showed the differences between the

Candy Crush Saga maker King plans U.S. stock market debut

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 5:17pm

By Mia Shanley and Sven Nordenstam STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - King, the company behind the hit mobile phone game "Candy Crush Saga," is planning a U.S. stock market debut that some analysts think could value it at more than $5 billion and herald a flurry of technology company listings this year. The successful flotation of Twitter in November and a surge in Facebook's share price have fueled speculation that a string of technology firms could come to market, including music-sharing service Spotify, lodging service AirBnB and payments company Square, as well as King. But some analysts question whether King can maintain its breakneck pace of growth, particularly given the difficulty of some other games makers in maintaining success. Zynga, the creator of "Farmville," has seen its share price halve since its initial public offering in late 2011, while Finland's Rovio has struggled to replicate the success of its 2010 hit "Angry Birds." Asian markets did see some successful IPOs last year, like Japanese mobile game maker GungHo Online Entertainment, but there has not been a recent stellar debut story on the mobile game front in Western markets that has excited investors.


Microsoft announces huge sale on classic Xbox 360 games

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 3:36pm
With all the action shifting over to the Xbox One, Microsoft is offering some very special deals for any Xbox 360 gamers who want to pick up some classic older games they may have missed the first time around. Microsoft Xbox Live programming director Larry Hryb announced on Tuesday that Microsoft is offering very deep discounts on some best-selling Xbox 360 titles of years past, although you’ll have to hurry to take advantage of them. The first part of the sale, which only lasts between now and Wednesday, includes discounts of at least 67% off for games such as Dishnored, Halo Reach and Bastion. The second part of the sale will last until February 25th and will include a larger

You can play classic Nintendo games on your iPhone without a jailbreak

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 3:07pm
Playing classic video game ROMs on the iPhone has typically required jailbreaking in the past, but webNES is a browser-based solution that gives everyone access to their own playable NES libraries. According to TouchArcade, webNES works in conjunction with Dropbox, so in order to play NES games on the web app, you’ll have to store NES ROMs in your Dropbox account and then log in through webNES. Once the files are in your Dropbox, you will be able to select one to play inside the app. You can try it out by navigating to webn.es on your smartphone where the creators have provided a few sample games. Just hit the + symbol in the top right corner of the page to

Developers are more interested in releasing games on PS4 than Xbox One

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 2:36pm
Sony announced on Tuesday that the PlayStation 4 had stampeded through its goal for the fiscal year to hit 5.3 million sales since launch. The scales have tipped back and forth between Sony’s new console and the Xbox One for the past few months, but now that Sony is beginning to secure a lead, developers are picking sides. According to a poll conducted by the Game Developers Conference, nearly 20% of developers are hoping to release their upcoming games on the PS4, while just under 17% chose the Xbox One. Analysts concur that the PS4 will continue to lead the home console race in 2014, but this mass approval from the development community is even more hard evidence that favor

Insider says PlayStation 4′s virtual reality headset is going to be ‘amazing’

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:55pm
Sony isn’t having any trouble at all selling PlayStation 4 consoles. In fact, the company just announced that PS4 sales to date have surpassed 5.3 million units. The Japanese gaming giant continues to sell consoles about as quickly as it can build them, but as is always the case, things are bound to slow down eventually as new consoles age and the novelty dwindles. So, what will be the next big catalyst that gives the new video game console generation an added boost? Will it simply be price cuts or cheaper versions of each box, or are we in store for something new and special? On the Xbox One side of things, Microsoft is working on a new technology called “IllumiRoom,”

Sony hits PlayStation 4 sales goal well ahead of target

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 7:30am
Sony on Tuesday announced it hit its internal PlayStation 4 sales goal well ahead of target, with the company having sold over 5.3 million new console units since launch by February 8. PS4 sales data has been collected from North and Latin America, Europe and Asia. Sony will launch the PS4 on February 22 in Japan. “I am thrilled that so many customers around the globe have continued to select PS4 as the best place to play throughout and beyond the holiday season,” President and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Andrew House said. “We are delighted that according to the NPD Group’s latest data, PS4 was January’s top-selling console in the United States. The PS4 system’s momentum just

Sony sells 5.3 million Playstation consoles, exceeds full-year target

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 3:30am

Sony Corp said it has sold 5.3 million Playstation 4 game consoles as of February 8, surpassing its full-year target ahead of its release in Japan next week. Sony had said that it hoped to sell 5 million units by the end of March after releasing the Playstation 4 on November 29 in the United States, Western Europe and Latin America and rolling it out across other Asian countries since then. The console will go on sale in Japan on February 22, the last country currently scheduled to handle the device. Microsoft Corp said in January that it had sold more than 3 million of its Xbox One console by the end of December after it was also released in late November.


Microsoft is considering lower prices for digital Xbox One games

Mon, 02/17/2014 - 10:45pm
The Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 are on a relatively level playing field as the new generation revs up, but Microsoft and Sony will find ways to help consumers differentiate between the two in the coming months and years. Sony has already played its trump card by offering free games through PlayStation Plus, but Microsoft might be closing in on its own digital initiative to give Xbox One owners better deals. Mike Ybarra, studio manager at Xbox, tweeted on Monday that Xbox owners have been asking for better deals on the Xbox digital marketplace, so his team is going to begin testing a few options. Starting tomorrow and running until the 24th, Ryse: Son of Rome, a launch game

Xbox One’s first big software update has been released

Mon, 02/17/2014 - 4:45pm
Microsoft on Friday released the first big Xbox One software update, which may have already rolled out to certain users. “For the vast majority of Xbox One owners who use ‘Instant On’ (the low power state that allows you to instantly power up your console by saying ‘Xbox On’), the console automatically checks for updates when customers turn it off,” Xbox’s Major Nelson wrote. “This means now that we’ve made the February update available, the next time you turn your console off it will take the update during off-peak hours in your local time.” Following the update, Xbox One users will be able to “see and manage” storage space, and “control your install lineup and more easily manage your download queue.” The

Video: ‘X’ trailer shows Nintendo’s Wii U can still hold its own against PS4 and Xbox One

Mon, 02/17/2014 - 2:00pm
The latest RPG from Monolith Soft is proof positive that the Wii U can stand up to the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 when the right developers are in charge. X, the follow-up to the international hit Xenoblade Chronicles, was finally given some additional screen time in the latest Nintendo Direct online presentation after months of silence. As one of our most anticipated games of the year, X mixes turn-based combat with real-time action, throwing players into a vast open world filled with gigantic beasts and operable mechs. X definitely appears to share much of its DNA with Xenoblade Chronicles, but the quality of the visuals is what really stands out in the trailers. It might not be the system

Previews show how much better Metal Gear Solid V will look on PS4 compared to Xbox One

Mon, 02/17/2014 - 11:45am
Sony’s PlayStation 4 took an early lead in the new generation of video game consoles when Sony managed to sell 4.2 million consoles in 2013 compared to 3 million Xbox One units sold by Microsoft. Sales aside, however, there are also clear differences between the two boxes in terms of specs. While the PlayStation 4 packs more power on the shelf, Microsoft has an army of cloud servers standing by to offload some of the processing as long as developers take advantage of it. While there are clear benefits to each approach, the games are really all that matters in the end — and it looks like Xbox One owners just got somewhat bad news where Konami’s highly anticipated title “Metal Gear

'Monster Hunter 4' granted Nintendo's international clearance

Sat, 02/15/2014 - 3:29am

Yes, it's going to be released outside of Japan, but no, it still won't be until 2015. As long as the release date doesn't slip, "Monster Hunter 4" fever should be gripping the Nintendo 3DS this time next year, in early 2015. During the February 13th Nintendo Direct broadcast, Product Marketing Manager Erik Peterson told fans that it would be "the biggest leap forward for the series yet." The game has been available in Japan since September 2013 and in Korea since December.


Xbox 360 owners can check out Xbox Live Gold free this weekend

Fri, 02/14/2014 - 9:30pm
Did your Valentine’s date cancel on you right as your Xbox Live Gold subscription expired? If so, you might want to reconsider the date when you resubscribe for another year of Xbox Live, but don’t fret, Microsoft has got your back. This weekend only, in order to celebrate the launch of the free-to-play title World of Tanks, Microsoft has made Xbox Live Gold free for all Xbox 360 owners. Xbox One owners looking to join the Titanfall beta without signing up for Xbox Live Gold are out of luck, but gamers that have yet to transition to the next generation can hop online free of charge from Friday, February 14th to Sunday, February 16th.