UK Charts: FIFA 11 tops table

FIFA 11FIFA 11 has become the third biggest ever game launch in UK history. Oh, and FIFA 11 has also unsurprisingly taken top spot in the GfK Chart-Track All Formats Software chart.

The achievement means that FIFA 11 is the strongest ever launch in FIFA history, with the only other games with more successful launches being Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Grand Theft Auto IV.  FIFA 11 was released on Friday, with various UK retailers attempting to offer consumers the best deal. The record breaking, chart-topping achievements of FIFA 11 mean that last week’s number one, F1 2010, has dropped to second place in the UK chart.

Capcom’s Dead Rising 2 remains in third position, moving ahead of Halo: Reach which drops two places from second to fourth.

Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock moves up one to fifth place. Ryder Cup fever has played a part in Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 re-entering the top ten in sixth position.

Sony PlayStation Move game Sports Champions drops from fifth to seventh, while pushing Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands down one more position to eighth. Toy Story 3 still remains in ninth place. PC exclusive title Civilization V occupies the final place in the GfK Chart-Track top ten, having entered in fourth last week. Former chart topper Mafia II drops out of the top ten and into eleventh place.

The full GFK Chart-Track top ten for the week ending October 2nd is as follows:

1. FIFA 11 (EA)
2. F1 2010 (Codemasters)
3. Dead Rising 2 (Capcom)
4. Halo Reach (Microsoft)
5. Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock (Activision)
6. Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 (EA)
7. Sports Champions (Sony)
8. Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands (Ubisoft)
9. Toy Story 3 (Disney)
10. Civilization V (2K Games)

Looking to buy FIFA 11? Check out this link to see where you can get the best deals.

So Train2Game, which of you have got your hands on FIFA 11? Was it always inevitable FIFA 11 would top the charts? And with PES 2011 released this week, will FIFA 11 still be top of the league next Monday? Could Enslaved: Odyssey to the West be a contender?

You can leave your thoughts on FIFA 11, the UK chart and any of the games in it, here on the Train2Game blog or on the Train2Game forum.

‘Operation Flashpoint: Red River’ reports for duty

Operation Flashpoint: Red River has officially been announced by Codemasters and is set to be deployed during 2011.

The game is set in the near future and “depicts a fictional conflict with contemporary geopolitical themes, which will unfold over three distinct acts in both single player and drop-in-drop-out co-operative play for up to four players online.”

Codemasters say improvements over previous iterations in the series will include deeper narrative-led campaign, streamlined inventory and control system, a refined enemy and squad AI system, , close-quarters combat,  and new air support options.

Red River also looks set to push co-operative play as one of its biggest features with Codemasters stating ‘players will be able to team up with their friends to play through additional co-operative game modes.’

New player class roles mean that gamers can play the way they want, honing skills in their chosen fields as they rank up through the new XP reward system and customise their equipment with numerous upgrades.

Creative Director Sion Lenton keenly pushes the multiplayer elements of the upcoming title:

“Operation Flashpoint: Red River is being built around four player co-op online play, complete with a strong narrative, new enemies and combat scenarios to deliver gameplay that immerses players in the reality of war like never before.

“The new setting of Tajikistan is a diverse and exciting backdrop for the wide range of military challenges the US Marines face around the world in real life. We’re excited to push the series in new directions while staying true to the core tactical combat that is the hallmark of Operation Flashpoint,”

Operation Flashpoint: Red River arrives in 2011 on the Xbox 360 , PlayStation 3 and PC.

So Train2Game, what do you think about this news? Does the prospect of proper co-operative play sound good? Is it a Modern Warfare 2 beater? Or are you just tired of the seemingly endless supply of war themed first person shooters?

As usual, leave your thoughts here or on the Train2Game forum.

Activision sell over 20 million Call of Duty map packs

Over 20 million Call of Duty map packs have been sold since the franchise began in 2003. Six map packs have been released by Activision so far, with one for Call of Duty 4, three for World at War and two for Modern Warfare 2.

The most recent downloadable content came in the form of this years Stimulus and Resurgence packages, both sold very well despite many feeling the asking price of over £10 was far too expensive for a handful of maps.  However, everyone’s favourite Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is obviously pleased with the success of the games:

“The Call of Duty franchise is unique in the world of entertainment and delivers one of the best multiplayer experiences ever”

“We are thrilled to deliver to fans exciting and engaging content that has the intensity they have come to expect from the franchise.”

Activision say that Call of Duty is the number one best-selling first person shooter franchise in both the USA and Europe, with Chart-Track, GfK and NPD group figures showing that sales indicate this to be true.

Of course, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 had one of the biggest first weeks in entertainment history and has no doubt had a massive hand in the success of the franchise. The fact that the smash sequel has only been out of the UK top ten since it was released in November is testament to its triumph.

Despite the massive achievements of the Call of Duty titles, Bobby Kotick still thinks there is more money to be made from them. Last month he told the Wall Street Journal that if he could change one thing about Activision, it’d be to charge a subscription to play Call of Duty online. Rumours of a future pay as you play Call of Duty have been roaming the internet ever since.

So Train2Game students, what do you think about the Call of Duty map packs? Are they a testament to the success of the game? Or just evidence of an exercise in corporate money making?  Would you charge for extra content in future? And is Modern Warfare 2 really one of the best multiplayer games?

As usual, leave your thoughts here or on the Train2Game forum.

Valve offer free game after ban blunder

Nothing says "I'm sorry" like zombies.

Well that’s certainly one way to apologise. Valve has offered not one, but two, copies of Left 4 Dead 2 to the 12,000 players that were accidently banned from playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 via Steam.

Poor, innocent gamers found themselves banned from online servers and the internet was flooded with forum posts pleading for help. Alas, Valve support staff could only tell these poor gamers that they were unable to help. It looked like many wouldn’t be able to play Modern Warfare 2 on PC anymore.

However, each of these players can now get back to shooting each other again, and have the option to pick up two free copies of Left 4 Dead 2. So, now they can shoot zombies too.   Players affected by the ban received an e-mail from Valve CEO Gabe Newell which said:

“Recently, your Steam account was erroneously banned from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

This was our mistake, and I apologize for any frustration or angst it may have caused you.

The problem was that Steam would fail a signature check between the disk version of a DLL and a latent memory version. This was caused by a combination of conditions occurring while Steam was updating the disk image of a game. This wasn’t a game-specific mistake. Steam allows us to manage and reverse these erroneous bans (about 12,000 erroneous bans over two weeks).

We have reversed the ban, restoring your access to the game. In addition, we have given you a free copy of Left 4 Dead 2 to give as a gift on Steam, plus a free copy for yourself if you didn’t already own the game.”

Well isn’t that nice?  It’s not often you see a Games Developer Apologise for their mistakes? Do Train2Game students think that other developers – we won’t name specific examples of course – could learn a thing or two from Valve? And have you ever thought about what you’d do if there was a mistake in one of your games?

As usual, leave your thoughts here or on the Train2Game forums.