225w ago - First reported as a rumor, Microsoft now stands to acquire 3DV Systems for the relatively small sum of $35 million.
3DV Systems has raised over $38 million from investors like Rafael Development Corporation and The IDB Group since its inception in 1997. Obviously this will result in a significant loss for the investors.
With the acquisition of 3DV Systems, Microsoft is looking to gain a stronger foothold in the video game console market. The company's Xbox 360 is currently in a distant second place in this generation of video game consoles behind Nintendo's Wii; a system that relies heavily on motion-based control, often considered easier for "non-gamers" to play.
Though the Xbox 360 and its nearest competitor the PlayStation 3 from Sony already have camera peripherals that can be used as control devices, the software for these has been less than stellar. The titles are always played on a 2D plane, leaving little room for innovative game design and the devices themselves are often imprecise or require excessive lighting to function.
The ZCam, which will undoubtedly be renamed by the time it is released to the public, was first announced back in 2007. It differentiates itself...
227w ago - 2009 is well upon us, it has really become unofficial tradition at Microsoft to announce a line up in the year it will be released at times teasing something for future years.
Here are a few titles we believe may receive some sort of recognition from Microsoft this year:
Perfect Dark 2
The last anyone saw of Perfect Dark was in 2005 with the release of Xbox 360 launch title Perfect Dark Zero. The game had sold well over 1 million copies and to this day still enjoys a dedicated online community despite the release of many competing titles over the years.
Rare was able to successfully create a online multiplayer experience which few have delivered, the ability for 32 players to battle it out in large maps without dedicated servers is a rarity, surprisingly a full house would generate very little lag, only in the most extreme cases would lag become a issue.
Perfect Dark Zero was a financial success for Microsoft showing the world Perfect Dark is still a viable franchise. Upon release many also called the Perfect Dark series the new "Halo" series for Microsoft. This is also one that was rumored in the past, even one we speculated Rare was working on, despite the Halo franchise making a return in 2009; we still expect a 2009 announcement and release.
234w ago - The XBox 360 had a great year in 2008, featuring a couple of great exclusives in Gears of War 2 and Fable II. In 2009, here are the top 5 exclusive picks:
Halo 3: ODST - Given Microsoft's complete lack of clarity on their 2009 line-up, the only title that they're currently (and exclusively) offering in 2009 that I am interested in is Halo 3: ODST. Despite Halo 3 being somewhat of a disappointment to me, I find myself irresistibly excited by the prospect of a new Halo game.
The series still has some kick ass weapons, great maps and fantastic controls to boot--and with it being Bungie developed, it's a safe bet to be one of the better titles of the year. It certainly doesn't hurt that it'll be a budget priced game, either.
Star Ocean: The Last Hope - I'm a sucker for RPG's, and I'm also a sucker for Star Ocean games. I remember playing the first Star Ocean way back when it was first released. I'll be truthful in saying I haven't playing every single one, but now that it's finally coming to the 360 I couldn't be more excited. Not too much information has been revealed about The Last Hope, but it looks like it will be a beautiful game at the very least.
Splinter Cell: Conviction - Splinter Cell Conviction has been long awaited ever since...
241w ago - I have found Microsoft's updated version of Xbox Live to be a mixed bag navigation-wise. And I haven't used a few key features like parties or Netflix yet.
But there's one feature I'm using that is undeniably awesome: Saving games to the hard drive. As soon as I got the NXE (new Xbox experience) beta test, I immediately saved "Fable 2" to the hard drive, mainly because the game is constantly accessing data from the disc and it is loud, even by Xbox 360 standards.
I was hoping I would no longer be distracted by the noise of a disc spinning with such fury it could fly out of the machine and behead me and I was right. The 8 minutes or so it took to transfer the game to my hard drive was well worth it, because the 360 is now virtually silent while I play.
But there was one extra, unexpected benefit: "Fable 2" looks noticeably better. The graphics are sharper and brighter. So much so that it's like the game, or my graphics processor, has gotten an upgrade.
Perhaps someone more familiar with programming can tell me why, but I assume it has to do with the fact that it's easier for the console to access and process all the requisite data, so it has to make fewer compromises to deliver me graphics in real time.
Nobody at Microsoft (or anywhere else) has talked about this benefit...