UK developers ‘bedrock’ of games industry say SEGA

SEGA say their UK based studios are the bedrock of the UK games industry, in the same 7 days as it was reported by Train2Game news that one of them – The Creative Assembly – are hiring for a new Alien game.

SEGA are also the parent company of Football Manager developers Sports Interactive. Train2Game students may see the support SEGA give to their studios as a positive thing for their future careers.

“Our UK internal studios are probably the bedrock of our business.”  SEGA Europe senior vice president – Production Gary Dunn told GamesIndustry.biz

“Certainly, when I was signing off our studio bonus scheme and I was signing of the incentives last week, for the second year both Sports Interactive and Creative Assembly are outperforming their business plans from a profitability perspective. These guys are on top of the game, it’s a real testimony to the games they make.”

SEGA West President Mike Hayes added that The Creative Assembly are one of the crown jewels of the company.

“It’s interesting: Creative Assembly are seen as the jewel in the crown of SEGA. That’s an interesting thing, I don’t think that would have been a thought about that fifteen years ago – but probably Creative Assembly has the consistent highest quality in terms of gaming for any studio, so SEGA’s very proud of both,”

As many Train2Game students may already know, The Creative Assembly are the studio behind the Total War series of PC games.

Train2Game students can get an in-depth look behind the scenes at The Creative Assembly in a report detailing the Shogun 2: Total War developer session at last years Eurogamer Expo.

As previously reported by the Train2Game blog, Shogun 2: Total War is competing with James Bond: 007 Blood Stone and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West for the ‘Best Original Video Game Score’ at this weeks’ 56th Ivor Novello awards.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on SEGA’s comments? Does their praise of The Creative Assembly and Sports Interactive give you a positive feeling about the UK Games Industry? And do you have a favourite game by either developer?

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

[Source: GamesIndustry.biz

UK Charts – Call of Duty: Black Ops is Number 1

Call of Duty: Black Ops Number 1

In perhaps the least surprising gaming news of the year, Call of Duty: Black Ops has stormed to the top of the UK games chart. In other news, The Pope is a Catholic, and bears do indeed do their business in the woods.

The latest edition of the Call of Duty franchise has predictably taken top spot, after smashing all previous day one sales records. A combined 5.6 million copies of Call of Duty: Black Ops were sold on day one in the USA and UK, with 1.4 million gamers here handing their hard earned cash over to Activision. Some special deals by retailers are also likely to have played a part in the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops. More copies of the game were sold on the Xbox 360 than the PlayStation 3, with 56% of Black Ops sales on the Microsoft console.

The launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops has been even bigger than that of its predecessor, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

Of course, Call of Duty: Black Ops wasn’t the only huge launch this week, with Kinect for the Microsoft 360 also getting a star studded welcome to the UK market. Eight Kinect games entered the top 40 this week, with Kinect Sports the highest placed in fourth spot.

Kinect sports fourth place means it’s behind the rising Just Dance 2 in third place, and previous chart topper FIFA 11 which remains in second after continuing strong sales.  Meanwhile, Last week’s number one, Football Manager 2011, drops down to fifth spot.

Elsewhere in the top ten, Professor Layton and the Lost Future drops one place from fifth to sixth,  while Fallout: New Vegas – itself a previous number one – remains in seventh spot. New Super Mario Bros Wii from Nintendo slips down two places to eighth.  The Sims 3 and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II round out the top ten in ninth and tenth respectively, having swapped positions with each other since last week.

Fable III was King of the charts only two weeks ago, but this week sees the Xbox 360 title drop out of the top ten all together. Sonic Colours has had a disappointing debut week, entering the charts in only 36th place.

The full UKIE ELSPA GfK Chart-Track All Formats Top Ten for the week ending November 13th is as follows:

1. Call of Duty: Black Ops (Activision)
2. FIFA 11 (EA)
3. Just Dance 2 (Ubisoft)
4. Kinect Sports (Microsoft)
5. Football Manager 2011 (Sega)
6. Professor Layton and the Lost Future (Nintendo)
7. Fallout: New Vegas (Bethesda)
8. New Super Mario Bros (Wii)
9. The Sims 3 (EA)
10. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II (LucasArts)

So Train2Game, it was always obvious that Call of Duty: Black Ops was going to be dominant number one this week, right? Do you think it’ll stay there for many weeks to come? Could it be the Christmas number one? Or do you think Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood or Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit could take the top spot next week?

As usual, you can leave your thoughts about Call of Duty: Black Ops, or any other game in the charts, here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

UK Chart: Football Manager 2011 takes top spot

Football Manager 2011

Football Manager 2011 is champion of the UK Charts, entering in top spot in its debut week.  Football Manager 2011 is only the second PC exclusive game to claim the top spot this year, with the other being Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty which reached number one in August. The success of Football Manager 2011 also provides SEGA with their second chart topper this year, with the other being Aliens vs. Predator.

You can see the Football Manager 2011 reveal announcement and read about some of the games new features here in the Train2Game blog.

Activision’s new James Bond games both failed to enter the top ten. The GoldenEye 007 remake for Nintendo Wii entered in 13th spot, while Blood Stone 007 only managed 18th place. However, with Call of Duty: Black Ops launching this week, it’s likely that Activision aren’t going to be too concerned about the Bond games not making the top ten.

Fable III was number one last week, but has dropped down to third spot in its second week on sale. Previous chart topper FIFA 11 proves that football games are extremely popular by holding on to second place, behind Football Manger 2011 in first.

Just Dance 2 is a non-mover in fourth spot, while Professor Layton and the Lost Future climbs three places to fifth. It’s the Nintendo DS title’s second highest position in the chart, since initially arriving in fourth place two weeks ago. New Super Mario Brothers Wii also moves up the charts, rising seven places to sixth thanks to the release of the 25th Anniversary Red Nintendo Wii Bundle.

Fallout: New Vegas looks like it may be running out of luck, having dropped from third to seventh, while Medal of Honor also moves down the charts falling two places from sixth to eighth.  Stores could end up full with second hand copies of Medal of Honor this week, as HMV are offering Call of Duty: Black Ops for £7.99 if EA’s game is traded in.

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II drops from fifth to ninth in its second week on sale, while The Sims 3 rounds off the top ten. WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2011 and PES 2011 both leave the top ten, falling to 11th and 14th respectively.

You can check out the Train2Game review of WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2011 here.

The full UKIE GfK Chart-Track Top Ten for the week ending November 6th is as follows:

1. Football Manager 2011 (SEGA)
2. FIFA 11 (EA)
3. Fable III (Microsoft)
4. Just Dance 2 (Ubisoft)
5. Professor Layton and the Lost Future (Nintendo)
6. New Super Mario Bros Wii (Nintendo)
7. Fallout: New Vegas (Bethesda)
8. Medal of Honor (EA)
9. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II (LucasArts)
10. The Sims 3 (EA)

So Train2Game, have you played Football Manager 2011? If so is it deserving of its Number 1 spot? Call of Duty: Black Ops is released tomorrow, so that’s going to be Number 1 next week right? And do you think we’ll see many Kinect games in next weeks top ten?

You can leave your thoughts on Football Manager 11, or any other game in the UK Charts, here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Football Manager 2011 Revealed!

Football Manager 2011Sports Interactive have announced that Football Manager 2011 will be released before Christmas this year.

Football Manager 2011 will feature more new features than ever before, including real-time contract negotiation, a revamped training system, match engine improvements and a ‘dynamic league reputation’ system.

For the first time ever, Football Manager 2011 players will be able to negotiate contracts with players in real time. Sports Interactive have been working real-life football agents, to gain an  insight as to how these negotiations can be made as realistic as possible in Football Manager 2011. Different agents will have different personalities, and therefore players will need to work differently with each one to succeed with Football Manager 2011.

The training system has also been revamped for Football Manager 2011 with athere is a new “match preparation” area of training so that managers can give their team specific areas to focus on in the lead up to a match. There are also more basic training schedules for players, and 14 different individual skill areas that you can focus your players on.  So no more having to spend hours tweaking schedules in Football Manager 2011 eh? Sports Interactive Studio Director Miles Jacobson says the training system hasn’t been changed before, because they couldn’t think of a way to improve it!

“At Sports Interactive, we always strive to give the end-user the best experience possible, the training system for example has always been the best we thought it could be, until now. We’ve found a way to make it even better!”

Interaction with players, staff and the board have also been improved for Football Manager 2011.

The 3D Match Engine of Football Manager 2011 has also been tweaked, with over 100 new animations added, as well as more player emotions, new player models, new stadiums, pitch textures, improved lighting, floodlit night matches, more goal celebrations and lots of other extras which improve the latest episode in the successful Football Manager series.

The other new features in Football Manager 2011 announced by Sports Interactive include a revamped media module, which will keep the managers better up to date with events going on in their football world.

The much requested dynamic league reputation will provide Football Manager 2011 with an even more realistic model of the footballing world.

Anyhow, enough with the text, for more information about the new Features in Football Manager 2011, Miles Jacobson explains them in the video below (While also showing off his collection of t-shirts)

So Train2Game, are you a Football Manager fan? Will you be rushing out to test your skills with Football Manager 2011? And does anyone have any horrific tales of addiction? (Like I was when I was at university!)

You can leave your thoughts on Football Manager 2011 here or on the Train2Game forum.