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Industry Bull

Uncharted drama photo
Uncharted drama

Star Wars actor left Uncharted 4 cast after 'weird changes'

More on last year's Naughty Dog unrest
Oct 20
// Steven Hansen
Uncharted 4 lost its writer and then its director in early 2014 amid allegations that writer Amy Hennig was "forced out" by The Last of Us’ Neil Druckmann and Bruce Straley, the pair that would go on to take control of ...

Konami insists Kojima hasn't left, is 'on vacation'

Oct 20 // Steven Hansen
Simon Parkin, author of the New Yorker piece, followed up with a photo from Kojima's going away party in response to Konami's statement. [embed]316504:60796:0[/embed] 「メタルギア」小島秀夫氏の退社報道をコナミが否定 現在は長期休暇中 [Tokyo Sports]
Bizarre photo
He's not dead, just sleeping
Yesterday, The New Yorker ran a piece about Hideo Kojima's last day in-office at Konami, including his good-bye party on October 9, and noting that his non-compete expires in December, at which point he can do whatever he lik...

Extreme! photo
I wonder if Sony will scoop him up
Konami used to be mon ami but now? More like non ami. Does French use "non" or is that just Italian? I don't know any more French, let alone something that rhymes with Konami. Anyways a recent New Yorker piece has pinned down...

Pre-orders photo

You're not listening: Pre-orders are up 24%

Stop doing that thing
Oct 14
// Steven Hansen
Stop pre-ordering games. They will not sell out. You're not even guaranteed to get a working product for your $60. Still, pre-orders are up 24% in 2015 compared to 2014, pre-order revenue up 33%, and publishers are being rewa...
Vivendi photo

Former Activision majority owner, Vivendi, buys stake in Ubisoft

Gameloft, too
Oct 14
// Brett Makedonski
After showing two years of declining interest in the video game industry, media company Vivendi SA wants back in. It recently bought a stake in French developers and publishers Ubisoft and Gameloft, which were both founded by...
Phil Spencer photo
Phil Spencer

Xbox head: I don't know if we can beat Sony

'They have a huge lead'
Oct 09
// Brett Makedonski
As this console generation nears two years-old, it's no secret that Xbox has spent the entirety of that time playing catch-up to PlayStation. Sony's platform started off with a huge lead in sales, and while Xbox may have clo...
Fallout 4 photo
Fallout 4

It's too early to pay for the Fallout 4 Season Pass

We don't know what's in it
Oct 01
// Jordan Devore
Bethesda opened pre-orders for the Fallout 4 Season Pass today, but hold up for a minute. We know it's $29.99, and that the game's first DLC is expected to roll out in 2016. We also know that there won't be platform-exclusive...
Might Number of delays photo
Might Number of delays

Mighty No. 9 trial version delayed after being an apology for initial delay

Yo dog, I heard you like delays
Sep 16
// Jed Whitaker
Remember when Mighty No. 9 was delayed into 2016, and then a trial version was promised to release today to backers as a sort of apology for said delay? Today the official blog has announced the trial version has a "good chan...
Video games are dead photo
Video games are dead

Someone besides Konami wants to turn gamers into gamblers

Clue: It isn't Bob Barker
Aug 19
// Jed Whitaker
"Our company is a Pachinko Slot maker, but we're also video game developers. We'd like to work hard to make video game fans into Pachinko Slot fans," said a SNK Playmore rep at a Beast Busters Pachinko slot press conference r...
Funcom photo

Funcom's in a bad way after poor Lego MMO performance

Seeking merger, acquisition, or anything
Aug 12
// Brett Makedonski
Norwegian developer Funcom is seemingly in financial peril after its free-to-play turned pay-to-play game Lego Minifigures Online performed worse than expected. The company doesn't expect revenues from the Lego ...
Shield recall photo
Shield recall

Nvidia Shield recalled over fire hazard

That thing'll kill ya!
Jul 31
// Steven Hansen
Have you had more money than sense over the last year (July 2014-July 2015) and bought an Nvidia Shield gaming tablet? Well, it could literally kill you. Nvidia is urging users to check which battery their Shield uses to see ...
Majesco photo

The last of Majesco's founding family has left the company

Sutton's out, Rector's in
Jul 29
// Brett Makedonski
In 1986, Morris Sutton founded video game publisher Majesco Entertainment alongside his sons, Jesse and Joseph Sutton. While Morris and Joseph had moved on sometime ago, Jesse has served as the company's president and CEO sin...
Ouya photo

Update: Razer/Ouya deal means no money for indies, devs encouraged to not talk to press

Free the Games fund goes kaput?
Jul 28
// Mike Cosimano
[Update: In a call with Polygon, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan confirmed that the company would be looking into fulfilling the contracts made by Ouya. "We are going to try and make good on this fund and give these developers an opt...
Chinese console ban photo
Approved for manufacture, sale anywhere
China is lifting nationwide restrictions on video game consoles, The Wall Street Journal reports. The nation eased the embargo last year by allowing console manufacturers to operate in Shanghai's free-trade zone, leading to M...

Madden tricks photo
Madden tricks

Madden 16 screenshots lie about Marshawn Lynch dick-grabbing mechanic

I'm just here so I don't get fined
Jul 23
// Steven Hansen
Madden 16 used the above photo for Marshawn Lynch in its running backs player rating reveal. He is, naturally, number one at 96 overall. He cannot, however, grab his dick in defiance, as he is wont to do in real life. Seriously, watch this.
Daybreak CEO photo
Daybreak CEO

Sony Online Entertainment founder steps down

Currently Daybreak
Jul 23
// Steven Hansen
John Smedley co-founded EverQuest developer Verant Interactive, which morphed into Sony Online Entertainment following EverQuest's huge success. He even hung on after Sony sold SOE earlier this year, turning it into Daybreak ...
Business giants photo
Business giants

Well-liked, not-hated EA and Comcast partner for Xfinity Games

I'm not even mad, but actually happy
Jul 14
// Steven Hansen
Two companies with whom even the average consumer has no qualm, Electronic Arts and Comcast, have partnered on a new streaming game service, a series of connected words that will cause no one to bristle or dejectedly swipe th...
Electronic Arts photo
Electronic Arts

Jade Raymond joins EA to open new studio

Overseeing Visceral Games as well
Jul 13
// Kyle MacGregor
Jade Raymond, formerly of Ubisoft, has taken a post at Electronic Arts to open a new studio. "I’m happy to announce that I’m joining Electronic Arts and opening Motive, a new development studio in my home tow...
Backwards compatibility photo
Backwards compatibility

Ubisoft speaks out in favor of Xbox One's backwards compatibility

This will likely be a trend
Jul 09
// Brett Makedonski
When we spoke with Xbox last month at E3, representatives for the platform-holder indicated that the newly-announced backwards compatibility would likely be a popular feature among publishers. All the major players haven't ye...
Executive shade photo
Executive shade

Xbox's Phil Spencer: Executives should play games

Tips his fedora to Sony
Jul 07
// Jed Whitaker
Xbox boss Phil Spencer said "I think our industry is better when more people who made decisions on games play." Basically meaning executives of gaming companies would make better decisions if they themselves were ga...
Sega not dead photo
Sega not dead

Sega pledges 'quality,' console game announcement at TGS

Not just mobile and browser games!
Jul 07
// Steven Hansen
Sega bowed out of E3 completely this year as the company continued to wind down relevancy as a developer and publisher of moderate to big budget video games. But wait! Earlier this morning, we reported on Sega boss Hajime Sat...
Visceral Star Wars photo
Visceral Star Wars

Visceral's Star Wars has hints of Uncharted and 1313

Uncharted writer lost 8 months of work
Jun 29
// Steven Hansen
Visceral Games' (Dead Space, Battlefield: Hardline) Star Wars game was noticeably absent from EA's E3 showing this year. I thought there was a chance we'd see it, anyhow. Uncharted voice actor Nolan North did give some hints ...
UK sales photo
UK sales

Batman: Arkham Knight has best 2015 week one UK sales

Beat out Witcher 3 and Arkham City
Jun 29
// Steven Hansen
A reminder that Arkham Knight has "Batman" in the name and no volley of excoriating 7/10 reviews (or broken PC ports) can do it harm: Rocksteady's new Batman is the top-selling game of 2015 in the UK by its first week sales, ...
The Phantom Pain photo
The Phantom Pain

Konami's stance on Metal Gear Solid V microtransactions

And, uh, 40 minutes of footage!
Jun 19
// Jordan Devore
I'm back home from E3 2015 thanks to a too-early flight. I can safely watch this 40-minute demonstration of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain without any guilt trips from Steven. Yes! Straight away, "While it is true that...
Vita photo

Sony exec calls Vita a 'legacy platform'

That's not a good sign
May 27
// Brett Makedonski
Those who hold out hope that Sony will change course and start avidly supporting the Vita may want to finally give up on that pipe dream. The outlook for the PlayStation handheld has been grim, and is even more so after a top...
lol photo

Bowser leaves EA, joins Nintendo as Vice President of Sales

Wrote it for the headline
May 20
// Steven Hansen
Business! Yes, some exec hopping from one game company (Electronic Arts since 2007, most recently as Vice President of Global Business Planning) to another (Nintendo, as Vice President of Sales) is bland stuff, but when the c...
Gambling, man photo
Gambling, man

Konami backs Nevada law allowance for 'skill-based' gambling

Gambling, man
May 18
// Steven Hansen
United States state Nevada's newly passed, plainly named Senate Bill 9 "allows for variable-payback percentages in slot machines." What that means is that previous games of chance can be augmented with, for example, bonus rou...
Nintendo photo

Iwata says Nintendo's mobile strategy won't involve whale hunting

PETA's pleased
May 14
// Brett Makedonski
There's a predominant school of thought toward making money in the mobile gaming sector: Focus your attention on the people who are willing to spend exorbitant amounts. That is, make the majority of your cash from a small poo...
Konami photo

Konami plans to focus on mobile games from now on

Mobile is the future, says CEO
May 14
// Kyle MacGregor
To the surprise of absolutely no one, making console games is no longer Konami's priority. Moving forward, Konami plans to turn its attention to the mobile space, new company CEO Hideki Hayakawa recently told Nikkei Tren...
Ubisoft photo

Ubisoft has almost completely moved away from last-gen consoles

Just Dance is the only exception
May 12
// Brett Makedonski
If you're a late adopter who hasn't picked up a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One yet, don't expect to play any Ubisoft games moving forward. The French developer and publisher is done making titles for old platforms. As reported by ...

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