Train2Game News: UK Top 20 Games – 13.05.13

Dead Island RiptideDead Island: Riptide goes one week better than its predecessor by holding on to number one for a third consecutive week, despite a 55% drop in sales.  Bioshock Infinite is the only other title so far this year to record three consecutive weeks at number one.  Competition for top spot comes in the form of an unexpected familiar face, Call of Duty: Black Ops II which climbs four places to number two, boosted by strong retailer price promotions only two weeks after dropping out of the Top Ten for the first time. The Walking Dead from Telltale Games and Avanquest – now available on disc has entered at number nine and Luigi’s Mansion 2 being at number ten keeps this week’s only other new entry out of the Top Ten with PQube’s critically acclaimed Persona 4 Arena having to settle for a debut at number eleven.

All formats

Week ending 11 May 2013

POS.  TITLE  PUBLISHER  LAST
WEEK 
1 DEAD ISLAND: RIPTIDE DEEP SILVER 1
2 CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS II ACTIVISION 6
3 TOMB RAIDER SQUARE ENIX 3
4 INJUSTICE: GODS AMONG US WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 2
5 FIFA 13 EA SPORTS 4
6 BIOSHOCK INFINITE 2K GAMES 7
7 ASSASSIN’S CREED III UBISOFT 11
8 LEGO CITY UNDERCOVER: THE CHASE BEGINS NINTENDO 8
9 THE WALKING DEAD TELLTALE GAMES
10 LUIGI’S MANSION 2 NINTENDO 9
11 PERSONA 4 ARENA PQUBE
12 FAR CRY 3 UBISOFT 12
13 DRAGON’S DOGMA: DARK ARISEN CAPCOM 5
14 GOD OF WAR: ASCENSION SONY COMPUTER ENT. 16
15 LEGO BATMAN 2: DC SUPER HEROES WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 15
16 DEFIANCE TRION WORLDS 13
17 THE ELDER SCROLLS V: SKYRIM XBOX 360 CLASSICS 14
18 NEED FOR SPEED MOST WANTED EA GAMES 17
19 GRAND THEFT AUTO EPISODES – LIBERTY CITY ROCKSTAR 19
20 GRAND THEFT AUTO IV XBOX 360 CLASSICS 20
< previous week
Leisure software charts compiled by Chart Track, (C)2013 UKIE Ltd

These charts cannot be reproduced either in print or online without obtaining permission from Ukie. If you wish to reproduce the charts in print or online, please contact david.smith@ukie.org.uk for the appropriate license.

Train2Game News: Games Industry News – 05.04.13

lucasartsIt is Friday so it is time for another Train2Game game industry news round up.

The saddest bit of news this week was that the new owners of LucasArts, Disney, has shut down the company. LucasArts were responsible for making many of the Star Wars licensed games as well as other games such as Monkey Island. A LucasFilm representative suggested that properties such as 1313 and Star Wars: First Assault could still find a home via a third party.

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Entertainment announced that the Injustice: Gods Among Us game is now available on the App Store. Developed from the ground up by award-winning NetherRealm Studios, this free-to-play mobile game delivers stunning graphics and a completely unique fighting gameplay experience. The mobile game features a collectible card mechanic and engages players in 3-on-3 tag team combat that pits many of DC Comics most popular icons such as Batman, Superman, The Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Aquaman and more against one another. Fans who also own the forthcoming Xbox 360 and PlayStation3 versions will be able to unlock content in the console versions that will be available in the mobile game, and vice versa, by registering for a Warner Bros. ID (WBID) account and playing the game.

Perfect World Entertainment Inc. and Cryptic Studios are pleased to announce that on April 30, 2013, the free-to-play action MMORPG Dungeons & Dragons Neverwinter is heading into Open Beta, allowing millions of players unrestricted access to the game world. Neverwinter is Cryptic and Perfect World’s proof that Western free-to-play games, when built from the ground up, can compete with even the biggest boxed subscription titles. On April 30, the companies invite all gamers to put that claim to the test. There will be no character wipes or restricted access after the start of Open Beta. Players can still become Founders through Neverwinter’s Founder’s Pack Program. Benefits include exclusive access to Beta Weekend 4, permanent in-game items that are unique to Founders, early access to Open Beta, and VIP perks. To take advantage of these benefits and to gain exclusive access to Neverwinter’s Beta Weekend 4, players may visit: http://nw.perfectworld.com/founderspack/

The latest set of downloadable content for Treyarch’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II has been confirmed for an April 16th launch on Xbox Live. The pack will include four new maps as well as a new zombie mode, available for 1200 Microsoft points or free to existing season pass holders. The four new maps are: Magma, a modern Japanese village featuring volcanic eruptions; Encore, taking place in the aftermath of a London music festival; Vertigo, a futuristic high rise building in India and Studio, a Hollywood movie back lot which describes itself as a “contemporary remake of Firing Range” which was found in the original Black Ops. By far the most intriguing addition to the newest DLC is the new Mob of the Dead mode, which sounds interesting enough to breathe life into the unspectacular collection of zombie content available currently. In it you play as a prohibition-era mobster locked up in Alcatraz whose attempts to escape are “foiled by the rise of the undead.”

Finally, creators of the hit game Castle Crashers, have released a new game. Blocks, Cats, Hats, Betrayal! This is how The Behemoth have described their new game, Battleblock Theatre. This newly released game, that is currently only for XBLA, is all about platforming, a “story of geometric proportions”, several modes of online gameplay and a massive amount of replayability. It has over 450 levels, hundreds of unlockables to find, over 300 prisoners to free and The Behemoth is calling it their largest game to date. The Behemoth said they are considering future ports, just like they did with Castle Crashers, but since they are a small studio it would take them quite some time to port if they do decide to bring the game to PC or PS3.

Train2Game News: UK Top 20 Games – 04.03.13

Crysis 3Crysis 3 holds the number 1 crown for a second week while FIFA 13 is up a place to number 2 rounding off a good week for EA. Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance slips a spot to number 3 ahead of non-mover Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Sega’s Aliens: Colonial Marines slips down again to number 7 following its number 1 debut 2 weeks ago. It’s a quiet week for new releases with no new entries into the Top 10 and 4 of its occupants being non movers.

All formats
Week ending 2 March 2013
POS.  TITLE  PUBLISHER  LAST
WEEK 
1 CRYSIS 3 EA GAMES 1
2 FIFA 13 EA SPORTS 3
3 METAL GEAR RISING: REVENGEANCE KONAMI 2
4 CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS II ACTIVISION 4
5 FAR CRY 3 UBISOFT 7
6 NEED FOR SPEED MOST WANTED EA GAMES 8
7 ALIENS: COLONIAL MARINES SEGA 5
8 DEAD SPACE 3 EA GAMES 6
9 ASSASSIN’S CREED III UBISOFT 9
10 HITMAN ABSOLUTION SQUARE ENIX 10
11 THE ELDER SCROLLS V: SKYRIM BETHESDA SOFTWORKS 12
12 SKYLANDERS GIANTS SKYLANDERS 14
13 HALO 4 MICROSOFT 16
14 SONIC & ALL STARS RACING TRANSFORMED SEGA 13
15 LEGO BATMAN 2: DC SUPER HEROES WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 15
16 JUST DANCE 4 UBISOFT 11
17 GRAND THEFT AUTO IV XBOX 360 CLASSICS 18
18 LEGO THE LORD OF THE RINGS WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 17
19 RED DEAD REDEMPTION: GOTY ROCKSTAR
20 FORZA MOTORSPORT 4 MICROSOFT 20

Leisure software charts compiled by Chart Track, (C)2013 UKIE Ltd

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II developer diary takes you behind the scenes

Get a glimpse at development of Call of Duty: Black Ops II in a behind the scenes preview from Treyarch.

The video sees studio head Mark Lamia discuss how Black Ops II is “pushing the boundaries of Call of Duty on every front,” while the team also discuss game design, technology, overhauling the lighting, the zombie mode and more.

The Call of Duty: Black Ops II behind the scenes video features Treyarch developers including director Dave Anthony, game design director David Vonderhaar, and lead animator Adam Rosas, and you can watch it below, right here on The Train2Game Blog.

Keep reading for the latest Call of Duty: Black Ops II news, while you can see developer diaries for a variety of games here on The Train2Game Blog.

What are your thoughts on the Call of Duty: Black Ops II behind the scenes video?

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

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II will ‘rewrite the rulebook’ say Treyarch

Train2Game students who play Call of Duty: Black Ops II when it’s released later this year will be playing a game that’s rewritten the rulebook for the popular shooter series.

That’s according to game director David Antony while discussing Call of Duty: Black Ops II and its game design with CVG.

“One of the ways we have been most ambitious is in terms of story. I worked with Hollywood screenwriter David Goyer for about the last three months editing the story on the first Black Ops, and we had a really great time. He genuinely enjoyed it, describing the experience as the most fun he’d had since film school 20 years ago.” he said.

“So we got to the end of the first Black Ops and he’s like ‘Dave, I want to work on the next one from the start. We’ve taken some risks on the first Black Ops; now let’s rewrite the rules about storytelling in games.’ So right from the start it wasn’t a case of thinking how far do we needed to go to satisfy peoples’ expectations… we’re not even thinking about that. We just want to rewrite the rulebook.”

Antony explained how Call of Duty: Black Ops 2’s branching story will work, revealing that there are different outcomes depending on your decisions.”

“So the sandbox levels, these are called Strike Force. Let me explain the overall branching story; you have characters – main characters – in the story who will live or die depending on what you do, and it’s not just what you do – it’s the choices you make and your skill in Strike Force. So depending on how skilful you are on those levels, it’ll actually have an influence on the overall Cold War that’s going on. So that’s one example.” he said.

“You play the game when it comes out in November, and you’re all likely to get different outcomes. So when you get to the end of the game we’re going to make it very clear to you the different things that could have happened.” he added.

Something that Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 won’t be getting, as previously reported by The Train2Game Blog, is a new engine. A team of 300 people are working on the game.

Keep reading The Train2Game Blog for all the latest news on Call of Duty: Black Ops II?

What are your thoughts on what Antony says about Call of Duty: Black Ops II?

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

Train2Game news: Call of Duty: Black Ops II doesn’t need a new engine say Treyarch

Train2Game students are very likely to have seen the official Call of Duty: Black Ops II announcement earlier this month, along with the accompanying trailer.

Eagle eyed viewers will have noticed the in-game engine looks similar to that of previous games, but Treyarch’s Mark Lamia has dismissed the need for a new one in order to improve visuals for Black Ops II.

“People always ask me, “Is this a new engine?” I liken it to people who live in an older house that has been remodelled.” he told One of Swords.

“Just because you’re remodelling the house and it will look new or it will have a new kitchen, you don’t tear out the foundation, or break out some of the framing. You might even go as hardcore as replacing the plumbing, and we will do that sort of thing, as an analogy.”

“It’s a gross simplification, but it’s one way to say that. There’s a lot of good still in that foundation that you wouldn’t get rid of and we don’t. We look to advance in the areas that support our game design.” he said.

Lamia continued to say that the engine doesn’t need to be altered if there aren’t any changes that need to me made.

“Engines, each time they get touched, they change. The creators alter them; they don’t modify what they don’t need to, and then they alter what they need to. You can’t make a competitive product if you’re not upgrading that engine along the way.”

“I think the whole thing about a new engine…sometimes that’s a great buzzword. Well, I have a new graphics engine — is that a new engine? Where does it start and stop? Elements of the code, you can trace back for a very very long time…but whole parts of the code are entirely new. Two areas we did focus on for this game were the graphics and the lighting — a pretty significant amount of work is going into that.” he added.

You can listen to the full 40 minute One of Swords interview with Treyarch’s Mark Lamia here.

Keep reading The Train2Game Blog for the latest Call of Duty: Black Ops II news.

What are your thoughts on the Call of Duty: Black Ops II engine? Do you think it could do with an upgrade?

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

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II officially revealed, 300 staff working on it

Train2Game students will have noticed that Call of Duty: Black Ops II has been officially been revealed. The latest title in Activision’s highly successful series is being developed by Treyarch, with the story set in 2025 and a branching story.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II is scheduled for release on Tuesday 13th November 2012 with over 300 staff working on it.

“There’s over 250 people at Treyarch, but there’s over 300 people working on the project,” Treyarch studio head Mark Lamia told VentureBeat.

“We do have contractors and test teams that aren’t part of the company. Those others aren’t actually employees of Treyarch. But there’s over 300 people working on the game right now.”

He added that due to the size of the project, Treyarch are happy to share resources with other Activision studios.

“We actually do open up anything from our side that they can have access to, but they have their own team with their own creative work,” said Lamia.

“Whether it’s inside of the Call of Duty franchise or, frankly, some other area of essential technology or whatever other area – if there are things that teams can access or leverage, then they do.

“For example, the facial rig and the performance capture was something that we worked with Activision’s central technology team on quite a bit. There are a lot of learnings there that can be applied to other teams.” he added.

The full Call of Duty: Black Ops II interview with Treyarch’s Mark Lamia is over on Venturebeat, while you can watch the Black Ops II reveal trailer below, right here on The Train2Game Blog.

What are your initial thoughts on Call of Duty: Black Ops II and the size of the team behind it?

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