As details are being revealed from the unveiling of the Xbox One, it appears Microsoft is going to be changing what it means to "own a game." The changes could have a drastic affect on the used and rental market for games while also making it easier for co-op gamers in a single household. How are they going to do that? Every game for the Xbox One will be installed to the hard drive, and if you want to install a game to another Xbox Live Account you'll need to pay a fee. Perhaps this is the end to having to buy multiple copies of games to play co-op in one house?
This generation has seen a variety of change occur on the gaming landscape with the introduction of microtransactions, the mass appeal of DLC, the rise of game prices, and the controversial "online pass system." At least one of those things are changing for the time being, with EA announcing it's no longer going to require an online pass for its games.
I've got to give major props to Lucy Bradshaw, general manager of Maxis at Electronic Arts. She's put out a letter to consumers that's pretty frank regarding the SimCity launch - which we all know hasn't been the smoothest.
It was only this morning we told you how server woes continue for EA's SimCity. Many users are unable to connect, join regions, and play the basic game. There are long wait times similar to an MMO for users as they attempt to play the game. Unfortunately things seem to have gone from bad to worse as the first major patch for the game has been released. Patches are normally a good thing - but in this case - not so much.
GameSpy has recently come under new ownership by a company called Glu Mobile. Unfortunately it looks like the first thing the incoming regime did is what happens a lot in corporate takeovers, they trimmed the fat so to speak. With that they shutdown a lot of multiplayer servers for several older PC games. Many co-op titles like Neverwinter Nights, Hidden and Dangerous 2, SWAT 4, and Star Wars: Battlefront no longer had any multiplayer functionality - though some games do allow LAN or direct connection options.
Ghost Recon Future Soldier does feature the promises couch co-op gameplay, but sadly it's limited to the game's Guerilla co-op mode. This mode is a survival based mode where players fight through 50 waves of enemies. A long time ago, in a news post far far away and more recently on various online retailers it was claimed that Future Soldier supported couch co-op gameplay through its campaign. Sadly, that isn't the case.
All day yesterday I was checking the PlayStation Network Store via my Vita, hoping to see a content update so I can download Unit 13, the latest co-op shooter from Zipper Interactive. I'm on the review for the game, so time is crucial for me, as I want to get the most out of the experience. To my disappointment the game wasn't available until almost 8:30PM Eastern last night, after which, I needed to wait almost two and a half hours for the 1.2GB game to download. Sadly, these superfluous issues with time were only the beginning.
The PC version of Dungeon Defenders has been the superior version for numerous reason, the biggest being it's had a half dozen pieces of DLC already available. The other being the game has been available for some ridiculously cheap prices on Steam. While console gamers have gotten their own sale on the game, it hasn't been anywhere near as cheap. Sadly it looks like console gamers aren't going to ever get the DLC for the game too.
It was back in September that we told you that Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad was released sans co-op, despite the official description of the game saying the feature was included. There's no longer mention of the co-op mode on the Steam page, but we've been assured by Tripwire's Alan Wilson that a co-op mode is still being planned.
This will probably be the last time we post a story like this, because expect it to be the norm. That is, future digital EA releases on the PC will only be available via Origin for download and most likely, retail versions of the game will also require you install Origin to have them run. Origin is EA's online service for its PC games. Mass Effect 3, with its four player online co-op mode, will be the next game from EA to follow this sort of DRM method.
I have a secret. For many years now I've secretly desired a game like Hitman that allowed multiple players to plan and execute a kill. In fact, almost 3 years ago I thought about starting a column here on Co-Optimus with the premise of having the community contribute to co-op game design ideas, with the first column being about the very topic. Sadly, it looks like a true Hitman game with co-op isn't coming anytime soon - mostly due to the fact that Agent 47 as a character is a bit of loner.
Valve has reported that their Steam has been compromised one day after their forums were reportedly hacked as well and taken offline. Valve president and founder Gabe Newell released this statement.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is out tomorrow on the Xbox 360, PlayStation and PC; and with it comes the official launch of Call of Duty Elite - Activision's Free and Premium service used to supplement the Call of Duty experience. We've already gone into details of what the service will offer to both paying and non-paying customers, but one platform won't have to worry yet about paying the $49.99 for Elite... and that's the PC.
We were told when Resistance 3 was still in the works that Playstation 3 games with some form of online/multiplayer aspect would likely require a "Online Pass" in order to access this content. It's been confirmed by Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) in a statement to Destructoid yesterday that everybody's favorite treasure hunter will also require one for the upcoming Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception. What's more, he may not be the only one...
Netflix dropped a bombshell on its customers late last night announcing it was splitting it's DVD by mail service and streaming service into two separate companies. While a major price increase was announced just months ago, this announcement was supposed to be the grand plan all along...or so it seems. With that Netflix is becoming a streaming media only company while their new DVD service is being called Qwikster.
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