Morning News Wrap (30 Jan 2013)

Breakfast Wrap 03What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up this morning?  We’d like to think it was “zombies are awesome”.  But it probably wasn’t, was it?

Apple will be releasing a new 128GB fourth generation iPad on Tuesday, 5 February.  One has to wonder if that announcement will receive the mass indifference a(nother) “new” Apple product actually deserves.  If not, read on.  The new model will be available in black or white, Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi+ Cellular versions, and comes with a suggested retail price of $799 for the iPad with Wi-Fi model and $929 for the iPad with Wi-Fi + Cellular model.

In case you missed the news in the last day or so, Halo 4 Spartan Ops Episode 7 is now available, as is the open beta for Crysis 3.  If you want to know more about the Crysis 3 beta modes and weapons, check out this video, or download the beta now.

If that’s still not enough first person action for you, the first DLC for Black Ops 2 is now available for Xbox 360 gamers (PS3 and PC in around a month).  Coming in at 1.86 GB, the 1200MS Points (£10.28) price tag brings you four new multiplayer maps (Hyrdo, Grind, Downhill and Mirage), a new Zombies map (Die Rise), a bonus weapon in the form of the Peacekeeper SMG and a game mode called Turned in which “a lone human player fights for survival and points against a field of zombie players”.

Still hungry for more first person news?  The Air Superiority mode has been added to the official description of Battlefield 3‘s End Game DLC expansion.  The DLC is due in March and features new maps and vehicles, plus the return of the Capture the Flag mode, and now adds Air Superiority which was last seen in Battlefield 1943.

So how about GTA in space?  Rockstar‘s  VP Dan Houser has said the prospect of a futuristic Grand Theft Auto is “tempting,” but was quick to add that he’d need “a good reason” to make it. In an interview with French site Ecrans last November (via OXM) he said in reply to whether the franchise would ever head away from the present day: “We will do it the very second we have an idea.”

This week’s Xbox Live Marketplace content and sales has been revealed.  New Arcade games over the next week are Skulls of the Shogun (30 Jan.) and Special Forces Seal Team X (6 Feb.), which must be good because it has ‘special forces’ in the title.  Call of Duty Black Ops 2: Revolution is out already for 1200MS Points, and some other stuff has been discounted (Hydrophobia, Hybrid and (H)Alan Wake’s American Nightmare).  EA also has a sale starting, so check out the Dashboard or the good Major for details.

Dead Space 3 will feature an unlockable Hardcore mode with permadeath according to the game’s executive producer Steve Papoutsis.  The game will feature four optional modes that unlock once you beat the game.   The Hardcore Mode will give you one life for the entire game, while Classic Mode is “for the DS1 veterans” (weapon upgrades via blueprints, no iron sights).  Pure Survival Mode will only allow resources to be acquired from downed enemies, not in the environment, and New Game+ Mode starts you with all your upgrades and gear from the previous playthrough.

Keeping with Dead Space 3, Steve Papoutsis has also hinted that a downloadable expansion pack that adds a “disturbing” new story to the game is in development.  No specifics were given, other than revealing that the content is “coming in a few weeks”.

Following yesterday’s announcement that Crytek has snapped up key Vigil Games’ staff, Crytek CEO, Cevat Yerli confirmed in a Gamasutra interview that they are not intending to purchase the Darksiders IP.  Instead, Yerli stated, “It would be pretty much safe to say that this team will be working on online games.” He added that Crytek USA will focus on “online games and kick-ass triple-A productions… It is going to be quite a significant investment for Crytek over the next five years.”

FEAR 3 developer Day 1 Studios has been bought by Wargaming – the studio behind MMO World of Tanks – for $20 million.  According to Wargaming CEO, Victor Kislyi: “The move into console game development is a huge step for Wargaming, as we begin to expand our presence into new platforms” and they will   “focus exclusively on the development of an unannounced console title.”

Disney has confirmed that Junction Point – the Warren Spector founded studio which developed the Epic Mickey games – has been closed.  The decision is apparently to “align resources against our key priorities”.  Erm.  Whatever the hell that means…

Sleeping Dogs developer – United Front Gamesis hiring for a ‘next-gen console title’, with the job listing calling for a multiplayer programmer.

If you’re a fan of city building, but couldn’t gain entry to varsity to study Town Planning due to a penchant for causing self-made natural disasters, then SimCity is just for you.  The trailer below shows off three major landmarks and city sets that are available to those that purchase the Digital Deluxe Edition.

A new trademark by Sony suggests what is potentially the PlayStation 4’s equivalent to PlayStation Home.  A filing on 6 February, 2012 and spotted recently (following being published on 1 January, 2013) by IGN, ‘BigFest’ is a service for “hosting on-line web facilities for interactive game play; hosting web sites of others for video and computer games or parts of video and computer games created by others on a computer server for a global computer network.”

Finally, the last of the current-gen posturing we hope.  Xbox 360 lifetime sales look likely to overtake those of current-gen leader Nintendo Wii in the UK.  Microsoft’s console was less than 200,000 sales behind Wii at the end of December and sold over four times more units than Wii in 2012.  That’s all well and good, but what will it matter this time next year. as we’re pretty sure the next-gen consoles will be battling for sales supremacy…

About Zombie Dredd

Wannabe gaming journalist. Wannabe zombie. And sometimes clan leader of OAP. Clint O'Shea when in his human disguise.