Category Archives: xBox 360
Injustice: Gods Among Us led a very slow month for U.S. game sales, according to the NPD Group’s April figures. The NetherRealm Studios/DC Comics production was the first fighter to claim the No. 1 spot since NetherRealm’s last project, Mortal Kombat, in April 2011.
Industry sales overall were down 25 percent from last year to $ 495.2 million, though NPD analyst Liam Callahan noted that Easter (which fell in April this year but March last year) can account for as much as a ten percent bump in sales.
As always, these figures do not include digital sales–no Steam, Xbox Live, PSN, or eShop here.
Software sales dropped by 42 percent to $ 109.5 million, though the few games that did launch this month performed twice as well as those that launched in April 2012, Callahan said. Dead Island: Riptide claimed second place in its launch month, and BioShock Infinite slipped a bit to third place in its second month of sales.
April 2013 Top 10 Games
1. Injustice: Gods Among Us (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U) WB Interactive
2. Dead Island: Riptide (Xbox 360, PS3, PC) Deep Silver
3. BioShock Infinite (Xbox 360, PS3, PC) Take 2 Interactive
4. Call of Duty: Black Ops II (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, PC) Activision Blizzard
5. Defiance (Xbox 360, PS3, PC) Trion Worlds
6. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (3DS) Nintendo
7. NBA 2K13 (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, Wii, PSP, PC) Take 2 Interactive
8. Skylanders Giants (Wii U, 360, PS3, 3DS, Wii ) Activision Blizzard
9. Lego City Undercover: The Chase Begins (3DS) Nintendo
10. MLB 13: The Show (PS3, Vita) Sony
If you plan to post a Let’s Play video of a Nintendo game, remember this: Nintendo gotsta get paid. A GameFront report with Nintendo response reveals that videos which exceed a certain length could be bookended by advertisements from the company.
The “content ID match ” process allows for much worse: it could automatically block videos on a regional or worldwide basis. That’s not what Nintendo’s going for, according to its statement:
“As part of our ongoing push to ensure Nintendo content is shared across social media channels in an appropriate and safe way, we became a YouTube partner and as such in February 2013 we registered our copyright content in the YouTube database. For most fan videos this will not result in any changes, however, for those videos featuring Nintendo-owned content, such as images or audio of a certain length, adverts will now appear at the beginning, next to or at the end of the clips. We continually want our fans to enjoy sharing Nintendo content on YouTube, and that is why, unlike other entertainment companies, we have chosen not to block people using our intellectual property.”
It does mean, however, that the videos no longer produce ad revenue for their creators. Thomas Was Alone creator Mike Bithell argues that Nintendo is shooting itself in the foot.
“A new media for talking about games has emerged, which comprises an audience far in excess of existing channels,” Bithell wrote on his Develop blog. “This media is talking about your stuff a lot. Why curb it? Why dissuade those taking part in talking about how much they love you? Would you charge a celebrity for tweeting about how much they liked your game? Would you demand ad revenue from a game site for running a review?”
He says sales of his game increased eightfold from launch day when it was featured by YouTube personality TotalBiscuit. Would TotalBiscuit have made the video–and jumpstarted Thomas Was Alone’s sales–if he wouldn’t receive its ad revenue?
Of course, Bithell isn’t a giant corporation with its own marketing department. Do you think Nintendo was right to clamp down on its intellectual property, or is it a shortsighted move?
EA has been a trendsetter in the realm of post-release, digital content, but it’s now backing off one of its most prominent tools. At an event in LA today, EA senior VP of corporate communications Jeff Brown confirmed for GamesRadar that the company would be backing away from its Online Pass scheme, due in large part to fan dissatisfaction.
“We thought it was a cool way to package up online services and content,” Brown said. “It never got off the ground. Consumers didn’t like it. We listened to what they were saying and decided it wasn’t worth doing it again…Consumers just didn’t like it.”
Brown went on to note that gamers should not expect Online Pass to return any time soon. “There’s a lot of plans to keep building in new content and services,” he said. “But no, there’s no plan to package this stuff up. And frankly that was a secondary concern. And no, I’m not aware of any project that does that.”
Introduced with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 in June 2010, the Online Pass program generally involved sequestering away online functionality behind a one-time use code. These codes came packed-in with new copies of games. However, those who picked up the game second-hand, be it through as a used game, rental, or otherwise, were required to pay $ 10 to buy their own, individual code.
The Online Pass scheme quickly caught with other publishers, including Activision, Ubisoft, Sony, and WB Interactive.
1666, the unannounced project from Assassin’s Creed I and II creative director Patrice Desilets, has been suspended indefinitely by Ubisoft. CEO Yves Guillemot confirmed the title has been put on ice, following Desilet’s second departure from the company, in a conference call with investors today (via GamesIndustry International).
“After more than two months of discussion with [Désilets], we couldn’t align our vision both on project development and team management, so consequently our collaboration has ended,” Guillemot said in response to a question about the former THQ Montreal studio. “We have suspended development on 1666 for an undisclosed time.”
1666 never had what you’d call a grand debut. Rather, its existence came to light as part of THQ’s bankruptcy proceedings. Desilets says he was escorted out of the company last week and he intends “to fight Ubisoft vigorously for my rights, for my team and for my game.”
Electronic Arts’s favorite little engine is coming to mobile devices. The team behind the software revealed “Frostbite Go,” an initiative to bring the engine to EA’s mobile projects, on its new website (via NeoGAF).
“One of our most exciting current projects is called Frostbite Go, a mobile division empowering EA game developers with Frostbite’s proven excellent workflows and features to bring true Frostbite experiences to all major mobile platforms,” the site’s history page reads.
Frostbite 3 will debut in Battlefield 4, and the engine is also powering many of EA’s other upcoming AAA titles, including Dragon Age 3: Inquisition and the next Mass Effect. Now we can expect to see the adaptable engine show up in the publisher’s ample selection of mobile games.
Electronic Arts has announced no plans to get Frostbite working on Wii U.