sleeping dogs

Hello everybody, and welcome back to our regularly scheduled programming. rAge is over, you’re all feeling bummed out and significantly poorer. I get it. Take this opportunity to mourn the 11 months and 3 weeks you have to wait for rAge to come back by reclining in something comfortable and catching up on all the gaming news you missed this week while you were in the foetal position at the bottom of your shower. There’s plenty of next-gen news, plenty of videos, new game announcements, Guiness World Records and even a hardware guide for the financially impaired.

Console News

Hey you know what’s better than consoles? Computers! That’s why Microsoft plans on allowing you to hook up a keyboard and mouse to the Xbox One, so you can have the computer you always wanted but weren’t sure how to use.

Speaking of peripherals you don’t want, the conspiracy theories continue to run rampant over the new Kinect, with some saying that the device will be used to mine your data, Facebook style, and tailor ads specifically for you based on your interests. I always get Korean brides in mine, so go figure.

Microsoft has denied the allegations, saying certain stuff was misinterpreted and wada-wada. It seems like people will find literally any excuse to talk crap about Kinect, and this is no exception. We sign up for data mining voluntarily all the time, frankly I couldn’t give a toss if the Kinect wants to show me its range of Korean hookers.

Across the ocean, Sony are looking to change their brand image, according to Playstation designer Testu Sumii, who added, “I just wanted to make a simple object for the living room. Sometimes products are a little too exaggerated. It should be simple. That’s my thinking.”

What do you think? Were they successful? I hate to say it but to me, it kind of just looks like a games console. Maybe I’m missing something.

Well it's.. um.. no, I don't see it.

Well it’s.. um.. no, I don’t see it.

Something Sony was a little less chuffed about are reports that a bunch of Chinese engineering students were forced to work the Foxconn assembly line packing and putting together PS4s. The Foxconn factory is well known for producing more suicides than electronics, and is a big fan of cheap, underage labour.

Sony has said they knew nothing about it, and expected better from Foxconn. Did you though, did you really?

Moving on to the ugly stepchild of the console industry, Nintendo’s CEO Satoru Iwata says he lives by the advice of former president Hiroshi Yamauchi – don’t fear failure. I’m sure this advice came in really handy in the Wii U’s first year.

Although, rather admirably, he said that Nintendo puts innovation above merely doing what everyone else is. He notes that Nintendo is not good at competing in an existing market, but rather they have to make something new; which comes with its ups and downs. The jury is still officially out, but at the moment it’s looking like the Wii U is very much a down.

Sources: VG247, Eurogamer, VG247, CVG, GamesIndustry

Gaming News

Speaking of the Wii U getting shafted, long-time support of the unpopular console, Ubisoft, have said that there will be no DLC for the Wii U version of Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag. DLC will however be available for Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4 and PC. Awkwaaaaard.

This is more bad news for the Wii U, as it’s hard to imagine anyone with more than one gaming platform purchasing the Wii U version of the game. Ubisoft didn’t supply a reason, but it likely has something to do with spending precious resources creating DLC that 27 people will play.

Ubisoft may have been feeling a little guilty about that, since this week saw Watch Dogs creative director Jonathan Morin said the game will look a lot better on the Wii U than current-gen consoles, and that it’s also “cool to play it just on the GamePad.”

But will there be DLC?

Yes. As long as you don't play it on Wii U, of course.

Yes. As long as you don’t play it on Wii U, of course.

So as you may have heard, GTA V is the greatest game ever made and sold more copies than actually exist. That wasn’t quite enough however, so just to add a few more trophies to Rockstar’s mantelpiece, the game has now managed to break seven Guiness World Records.

These are:

  •     Best-selling action-adventure videogame in 24 hours
  •     Best-selling videogame in 24 hours
  •     Fastest entertainment property to gross $1 billion
  •     Fastest videogame to gross $1 billion
  •     Highest grossing videogame in 24 hours
  •     Highest revenue generated by an entertainment product in 24 hours
  •     Most viewed trailer for an action-adventure videogame

It’s safe to assume at this point that when GTA VI comes out, the universe will implode.

Enough about old-hat GTA V, Sleeping Dogs developer United Front Games has announced they’re working on a new game, titled Triad Wars. If you’re thinking that sounds an awful lot like Sleeping Dogs, that’s because it’ll be set in the same universe.

It’s not so much a sequel, but presumably a different game with different characters set in the same world. The developer will be partnering with Square Enix once again, and that’s all they’re giving away for now. More details to follow in 2014.

DICE is looking to impress with Battlefield 4, and creative director Lars Gustavsson says they’ve improved significantly  on the single-player campaign of its predecessor.

Battlefield 4 will have less of a linear feel, allowing players to choose how they wish to handle situations instead of being prescriptive. As Gustavsson puts it, “Players want to feel smart doing what they’re doing.”

Personally, I'm just interested in shooting face.

Personally, I’m just interested in shooting face.

Which side of the fence are you setting up on? Battlefield 4, or Call of Duty: Ghosts?

Sources: Gamespot, NAG, IGN, Polygon, CVG

Videos

Call of Duty is one of the premiere competitive FPS titles, and Activision is adding to that in Ghosts with Clan functionality. The video below details the new feature and what you can do with it, but don’t be mislead by the mention of “cross-platform”, you can’t actually play the game across platforms, just create clans.

Final Fantasy XIII (the irony of the title never loses its charm for me) will be the last of the franchise on this current generation of consoles. We saw a bit of the game back in July, but this week the internets delivered 17 minutes of gameplay footage for your consideration. Enjoy.

For something that takes itself a little less seriously, Telltale has released a launch trailer for their new game, The Wolf Among Us, which casts players as the Big Bad Wolf, roaming New York after being kicked out of the fairytale. As is Telltale’s style, the game will be released episodically, with the first episode available as of yesterday. Check out the trailer to see if it’s something you might be interested in.

Finally, we have a new trailer for the next XCOM title, Enemy Within. This clip introduces the villains of the game, a rogue organisation called EXALT looking to steal alien technology for their own nefarious uses.

Best of NAG

Call of Duty: Ghosts got a list of minimum requirements this week via Nvidia, which may or may not be real as Activision hastily moved to inform everyone that the specs weren’t official. I did, however, have just enough time to climb on my soapbox and rant about an issue that may or may not be relevant.

Hardware guru Wesley Fick was at it again this week, showing off the best PC builds gamers can manage on a relatively tight budget. The best part is, it’ll run Call of Duty: Ghosts! Check it out.

Most SA gamers looking to buy into the next-gen consoles early have resigned themselves to getting a PS4 as Microsoft will be forgetting Africa exists for the next year or so. However, there is a ray of hope, as one local retailer is actually going to be importing them in. You can find all the details here.

Aside from the various clips above, this week also brought us a new trailer for the Thief reboot, this time with some juicy gameplay. Honestly, the game is looking pretty damn good. You can find the clip here.