Train2Game News: Train2Game Students helping Help for Heroes

Help for HeroesA few of our Train2Game Students have taken it upon themselves to help out Help For Heroes. They will be attempting to break the world record for a gaming marathon.

Christopher Edwards and his friends contacted me a while ago with their plan and they have since got in touch with Guinness. They have had their record accepted and they have the support of Help For Heroes.

They are planning on playing Battlefield 3 for a total of 150 hours, beating the current record of 135 hours. In total, there will be five people competing to beat the time, the game will be played online so other members of the public can join and play with them.

They will rent a server where they will place a banner and a friendly message for players to see before they enter the game, mentioning their pledge to Help for Heroes and the fact it is a Guinness World Records attempt.

The Guinness World Records rules state that the group are allowed a 10 minute break every hour which can be saved up to use when they choose. The location is not yet decided, however, where ever it is staged the attempt is going to be live streamed online and will include a link to make donations.

Chris said “I hope that you find my cause a worthy one and that myself and my friend’s can count on your support and sponsorship. We hope to make a lot of money for charity, if not we may just make it over the hundreds, however we believe any amount could be a great asset to Help for Heroes.”

If you wish to support Chris and his friends you can do so by visiting http://www.bmycharity.com/150hoursgaming4charity

You can also like and follow their progress at https://www.facebook.com/150HoursOfGaming4Charity

I wish Chris and his friends the best of luck!

Train2Game News: UK Charts Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes flies to No.1

Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes from Warner Brothers is the new UK No.1, bettering the achievement of its predecessor which debuted at No.2 back in 2008.

The success of Lego Batman 2 sees FIFA 12 drop to second spot, while Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier slips one to No.3.

The Train2Game Blog recently spoke to Ghost Recon: Future Soldier Creative Director Jean-Marc Geoffroy and Ubisoft Development Director Adrian Lacey, with the pair offering advice to Train2Game students on getting into the industry.

Max Payne 3 slips one to No.4, Battlefield 3 is a non-mover at No.5, while Lollipop Chainsaw drops two to No.6 after its debut week. As the event gets closer, Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games moves up two to No.7, while The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim jumps 15 places to re-enter the top ten at No.8.

Sniper Elite V2 from Oxford studi Rebellion slips to No.9, while FIFA Street rises three to re-enter and complete the top ten.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 23rd June is therefore as follows:

1. LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes (Warner Bros)
2. FIFA 12 (EA)
3. Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (Ubisoft)
4. Max Payne 3 (Rockstar)
5. Battlefield 3 (EA)
6. Lollipop Chainsaw (Warner Bros)
7. Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games (Sega)
8. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda)
9. Sniper Elite V2 (505 Games)
10. FIFA Street (EA)

Relases for the week ahead include Spec Ops: The Line and The Amazing Spider-Man, while Metal Gear Solild HD Collection arrives for PlayStation Vita.

What are your thoughts on Lego Batman 2 taking top spot? Will it be dislodged by one of the coming week’s new releases?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game News: UK Charts – FIFA 12 takes its 9th No.1

FIFA 12 once again sits atop the UK Charts, taking its 9th No.1 38 weeks after release.  In that time, the EA Sports title hasn’t dropped out the top five once, beating the achievements of its predecessor FIFA 11 which remained in the top five for 23 weeks.

Having held top spot for three weeks, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier settles for No.2  The Train2Game Blog recently spoke to Ghost Recon: Future Soldier Creative Director Jean-Marc Geoffroy and Ubisoft Development Director Adrian Lacey, with the pair offering advice to Train2Game students on getting into the industry.

Max Payne 3 drops one to No.3, while new release Lollipop Chainsaw debuts at No.4, pushing Battlefield 3 down to No.5.

Diablo III jumps 16 places to No.6, with Game of Thrones dropping one to No.7.  Sniper Elite V2 slips three to No.8, Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games is a non-mover at No.9, with DiRT Showdown completing the top ten.

New release for PlayStation Vita, Gravity Rush, is the other new entry at No.11.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 16th June is therefore as follows:

1. FIFA 12 (EA)
2. Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (Ubisoft)
3. Max Payne 3 (Rockstar)
4. Lollipop Chainsaw (Warner Bros)
5. Battlefield 3 (EA)
6. Diablo III (Blizzard)
7. Game of Thrones (Koch Media)
8. Sniper Elite V2 (505 Games)
9. Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games (Sega)
10. Dirt Showdown (Codemasters)

Releases for the week ahead include LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes.

What are your thoughts on FIFA 12 returning to No.1? Were you among those who picked up Lollipop Chainsaw?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum

Train2Game news: UK Charts – FIFA 12 takes first No.1 of 2012

Train2Game blog readers asw FIFA 12 take the final No.1 of 2011 and 2012 has started in the same way with EA Sports’ popular football title remaining at the top of the pile.

It’s the fifth time FIFA 12, which as reported by the Train2Game blog was the UK’s third ever biggest launch when it was released, has taken top spot.

EA also take second place in this week’s chart with Battlefield 3 moving up one spot to No.2, switching places with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 which drops to No.3. Just Dance 3 remains at No.4, while The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim raises three places to No.5.

Zumba Fitness, which Train2Game Blog readers saw dominate the charts last summer, returns to the top ten at No.6, one place ahead of non-mover Need for Speed: The Run. Saints Row: The Third drops to No.8, while moves up from No.12 to re-enter the top ten at No.9.

Train2Game students can read our interview with RAGE Creative Director Tim Willits, which contains some great advice about getting into the industry, here on The Train2Game Blog.

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations completes the top ten this week, after dropping down five spots from No.5.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 7th January 2012 is therefore as follows:

1. FIFA 12 (EA)
2. Battlefield 3 (EA)
3. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Activision)
4. Just Dance 3 (Ubisoft)
5. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda)
6. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
7. Need For Speed: The Run (EA)
8. Saints Row: The Third (THQ)
9. Rage (Bethesda)
10. Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (Ubisoft)

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on this weeks charts? For how long will FIFA 12 continue to dominate?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: UKIE Games Charts©, compiled by GfK Chart-Track]

Train2Game news: UK Charts – Battlefield 3 shoots to No.1

Train2Game students will have seen the Battlefield 3 hype machine in action for most of this year, and all that work from EA seems to have paid off because the FPS from DICE takes No.1 in its first week on sale with the second biggest launch of the year so far.

Not only does Battlefield 3 claim the 10th highest week one sales in the process, but it also beats the combined first week sales of all the previous Battlefield titles put together.  The success of Battlefield 3 means previous No.1 Batman: Arkham City, slips to No.2, with EA Sports FIFA 12 dropping one to No.3

PC title Football Manager 2012 is down one at No.4, with Just Dance 3 holding on to No.5 for the second week in a row.

Former No.1 Forza Motorspot 4 slips to No.6 in its third week on sale, while The Sims 3: Pets drops one to No.7.  Zumba Fitness continues to feature in the top ten, this week moving up one to No.8, while Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure from Activision reaching top ten at No.9 in its third week.

RAGE from id Software completes the top ten.  (Train2Game students can see our in-depth interview with RAGE Creative Director Tim Willits here on the Train2Game blog)

PES 2012 and Gears of War 3 both drop out the top ten.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 29th October 2011 is therefore as follows:

1. Battlefield 3 (EA)
2. Batman: Arkham City (Warner)
3. FIFA 12 (EA)
4. Football Manager 2012 (Sega)
5. Just Dance 3 (Ubisoft)
6. Forza Motorsport 4 (Microsoft)
7. The Sims 3: Pets (EA)
8. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
9. Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure (Activision)
10. Rage (Bethesda)

Releases this week include Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception.

So Train2Game, what do you make of Battlefield 3’s success? Have you played it? If so what do you think? And for how long can it hold onto No.1?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game news: UK Charts – Batman: Arkham City No.1 in good week for UK developers

Batman: Arkham City screen 01Train2Game students have good news in that it’s been a good week for UK game developers, with two British produced games debuting in the top 3 of this week’s charts.

Batman: Arkham City from North London based Rocksteady Studios comfortably takes No.1, giving Warner Bros. their biggest ever launch title. Arkham City sold almost double the number of its Square Enix published predecessor, Arkham Asylum.  The huge numbers make Batman: Arkham City the 4th biggest launch of the year.

Former chart topper, as reported by the Train2Game blog, FIFA 12 remains at No.2 while PC title  Football Manager 2012 from London studio Sports Interactive takes No.3 in its first week. Forza 4 drops to No.4 after taking pole position in its first week on sale. Just Dance 3 drops two to complete the top 5, with the majority of copies being sold for the Nintendo Wii.

The Sims 3: Pets is the only other new entry in the top 10 this week, reaching No.6 in its first week, one spot ahead of PES 2012 which slips two spots to No.7 in its second week on sale. RAGE from id Software drops four to No.8, while former long time No.1 Zumba Fitness drops to No.9.

Gears of War 3, another former chart topper, completes the top ten after dropping four places. F1 2012, Dark Souls and Jonah Lomu Rugby Challenge all leave the top ten.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 22nd  October 2011 is therefore as follows:

1. Batman: Arkham City (Warner)
2. FIFA 12 (EA)
3. Football Manager 2012 (Sega)
4. Forza Motorsport 4 (Microsoft)
5. Just Dance 3 (Ubisoft)
6. The Sims 3: Pets (EA)
7. PES 2012 (Konami)
8. Rage (Bethesda)
9. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
10. Gears of War 3 (Microsoft)

The biggest release of the coming week is Battlefield 3, which Train2Game students will know recently held a successful open beta.

So Train2Game, what do you make of the good week for British developers? What are your thoughts on Arkham City? And will it be Battlefield 3 that takes No.1 next week?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: UKIE Games Charts©, compiled by GfK Chart-Track]

Train2Game news: DICE detail how open beta changed Battlefield 3

Train2Game students were among the millions who took part in the Battlefield 3 open beta.  Developer DICE have has thanked everyone who took part, and has detailed some of the changes to Battlefield 3 as a result of the open beta.

“On behalf of the entire team at DICE, I wanted to say thanks to everyone who played and participated in our Battlefield 3 Open Beta. The information that we’ve gathered from your play time is invaluable. It will help to make Battlefield 3even better!” DICE’s Tommy Rydling wrote on the PlayStation Blog.

“But before I leave you, here is a short selection of just some of the hundreds of changes and additions we are making to the game before launch, as a direct result of your feedback in the Open Beta:

Improved Squad Functionality

There will be improved squad functionality in the retail game (including but not limited to): the ability to create squads prior to launching into a game, sticking with your squad when joining a game and continuing together through future games (if team balance on the server allows it), inviting friends to a squad, and changing squads once in game.

More Accessible Settings Menu

The ability to modify your settings via the deploy screen has been added into the retail game.

Improved Kill Cam

In the Open Beta, the Kill Cam would sometimes behave erratically. This has been fixed for the launch of the retail game.

Netcode Optimization

The netcode is one of the many things that we tested as part of the Open Beta and it was not necessarily reflective of the final retail game. The DICE team appreciates, and has heard, the feedback you’ve provided and is further optimizing online play.

Train2Game students will be aware that beta tests can be a hugely important part of game development, but as previously reported by the Train2Game blog, DICE believe players who complained about bugs didn’t understand the meaning of a beta test.

Train2Game students can get an in-depth look at the importance of beta testing as part of a huge Train2Game blog interview with Trion Worlds.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts of DICE’s reaction to the Battlefield 3 beta? What are your thoughts about the changes? And are you looking forward to Battlefield 3?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: PlayStation Blog

Train2Game news: Battlefield 3 game design “grounded in authenticity”

Train2Game students who recently took part in the Battlefield 3 beta, or indeed any Train2Game student will be interested in this; DICE’s Battlefield 3 producer Patrick Bach has been speaking to Industry Gamers about the goals of Battlefield 3, and it isn’t to be realistic, rather authentic.

“We are not trying to create a simulator. But the feeling that what happens in the game is plausible and looks real and authentic is important to us.” Bach told Industry Gamers.

He said that the game design of Battlefield 3 has been heavily researched in order to make the story as authentic as possible.

“We have a story tell and want to carry that story across in a unique style and tone grounded in authenticity. Researching authenticity is extremely important for us and it’s impossible to make this stuff up without risking our desired style and tone,” he said.

“I don’t see it as a race to be the most realistic shooter – realism, as opposed to grounded in authenticity, is not our end goal with Battlefield 3 and probably never will be. Having said that, with greater graphics capabilities comes a greater need to focus on visual details.” Said the DICE man.

However, Bach admitted that developed needed to build a brand new engine in order to achieve what they wanted to do, because nothing strong enough was available. He believes that it’ll give the entire FPS genre to evolve.

“When we set out to do Battlefield 3, we realized that no existing game engines would be able to handle what we wanted them to do. That’s why we built Frostbite 2, and that’s why I think the genre will take a leap forward.”

As seen earlier today on the Train2Game blog, that’s different to rival shooter Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 which has just seen its predecessors engine tweaked.

Bach thinks that it’s an exciting time for FPS developers, with the potential for the genre to grow even further.

“On the arena as a whole, I think we are at a very exciting point in time. I think this year will see a huge growth in the total FPS market.”

He added that social devices will also change how people play games. Battlefield 3 has a ‘Battlelog’ service which Bach believes “will make a huge difference in how people perceive where the game starts and ends.”

Games, especially FPS titles with their deep persistence and team play are no longer just hard-coded discs. They are transforming into a service.” he added.

As reported by the Train2Game blog, Battlefield 3’s rival, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, so features a social system, Call of Duty Elite, and publisher Activision also believe social will become a huge part of gaming in future.

Earlier this year, the Train2Game blog reported that EA believe Battlefield 3 will be superior to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on Battlefield 3 being ‘authentic’ rather than ‘realistic’? Are you impressed by the Frostbite 2 engine? And could it ultimately topple Call of Duty?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: Industry Gamers]

Train2Game news: Gamers misunderstand meaning of ‘beta test’ say DICE

 

Train2Game students – at least a few of them are – are likely to involved with the current Battlefield 3 beta, which a runs through to 10th October.

And while Train2Game students – especially the QA Testers – will understand that beta tests are an important part of game development, there filtering out bugs and tweaking gameplay, it seems gamers in general are less aware of this!

Some have criticised the bugs that have appeared while playing Battlefield, or the fact that’s only one map, but according DICE’s Patrick Liu, it’s because these people don’t get the reasons for an open beta.

“I think there’s been a misunderstanding of the term ‘beta test’!” the Battlefield 3 producer told The Guardian.

“We ran the alpha tests with a rush map and we wanted to have some sort of reference so we could compare results – so we needed to have more-or-less the same map.”

“But we do understand the concerns that we didn’t show a conquest map, but we have demoed Caspian Border, and we did run a conquest map as a limited PC-only test.

According to Liu, one of the main reasons for the Battlefield 3 beta test is to make sure the backend systems work when the game is release.

“He just wanted to know it wouldn’t crash and burn at launch” he said.

“It was horrible with Battlefield 1943 – it sold ten times the numbers we thought it would, and it was down for three or four days which is really bad. We don’t want to go through that again.”

As reported by the Train2Game blog, DICE have stated that positive feedback from the open beta is helping them tweak the multiplayer aspect of Battlefield 3.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on Liu’s comments? Do gamers misunderstand the meaning of a beta test? And have you been testing Battlefield 3?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: The Guardian]

Train2Game news: Battlefield 3 beta aiding game development

 

Train2Game students will be aware of the importance of testing games during development, and the significance of this is already being displayed in the Battlefield 3 Open Beta.

According to the Battlefield blog, the feedback from players is providing useful information to developers DICE when it comes to improving the game.

“The amounts of people flocking to our Open Beta is fantastic! We are happy to see so many players enjoy this Open Beta, and giving us their valuable feedback on the experience on the Battlelog forums,” the blog post says.

Train2Game students can see the Battlefield 3 blog for a full rundown of the changes that have been made as a result of testing during the Open Beta, and DICE say they’ll be updating the blog with further tweaks they make as more people provide them with feedback about Battlefield 3.

The Battlefield 3 beta for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC runs through to October 10th, and Train2Game students who wish to get involved can find out how to do so here on the Train2Game blog.

It could provide Train2Game students, especially those on the QA Tester course, with experience of properly testing a game in development.

Last week, the Train2Game blog reported that Bioware also feel that playtesting is an essential part of game development.

So Train2Game, are you involved with the Battlefield 3 beta? Have you spotted any bugs? How important do you think this Open Beta is to the development of the game?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: Battlefield blog]