Daily Recap: May 12, 2009
In a bit of site-related news, today was our most active day ever in terms of unique page views. We can attribute such a solid boost in numbers to Nick’s wonderful review of Peggle for the iPhone (apparently one of the first online, even before the big-name blogs and sites), as it was our top story for the day.
So, we want to extend a ginormous gracias to those of you who read Silicon Sasquatch daily and continue to direct your comrades to our corner of the web. We promise to keep bringing you things of a decidedly awesome and videogame-related nature.
Now, it’s time for the real news: Atari gets cold feet, the telenovela that is Midway’s financial woes gets juicier, we get to know Modern Warfare 2 a bit better and Valve’s Team Fortress 2 team takes a “bow.” (You’ll get the pun in a bit.)
Despite having a very capable line-up of releases coming out this year, Atari has suddenly decided to skip E3 2009, citing a desire to explore “other selling and marketing initiatives.” Joystiq seems to believe the company’s change of heart is due to a lack of sufficient cash flow to pay the Entertainment Software Association‘s fees. That’s possible, but without up-to-date financial analysis available it’s hard to be certain.
Our cursory research implies that Atari has seen significant increases in business-related performance over the last year in comparison to its stock delisting ordeal last May. Things might not be so bad at the company, but without knowing for sure that’s quite the guess.
Maybe Atari is actually going to pursue alternative methods of marketing its Ghostbusters and Champions Online titles as their announcement said. But with E3 2009 supposedly returning to its old tricks of cacophony and neon light insanity–which always made the event a great place to get a game noticed and hyped–this could be the makings of a huge mistake for Atari.
Sumner Redstone, quite the controversial name as far as Midway’s current situation goes, is singled-out along with daughter Shari Redstone and former investor Mark Thomas, among others. Two of the suit’s many claims center on the Redstones intentionally investing $90 million into the struggling company to then recoup it under claims of “debt,” and also using Midway’s $700 million in tax losses to later obtain a beneficial refund.
It’s a great if depressing read, and goes to show once again that money is quite the motivator when it comes to personal gain. No one wants to see any development studio go under thanks to fraudulent actions of insensitive businesspeople. But, yes, I suppose it’s “just business.”
Infinity Ward‘s Modern Warfare 2 is getting a blowout piece in the next issue of Game Informer, and multiple websites have posted some of the initial details. What’s known so far sounds both promising and unfortunate at the same time. Taking place years after the last game, “Soap” MacTavish–the main character throughout the British SAS missions in Call of Duty 4–is now a captain who will serve as the new character’s mentor as did Captain Price the last time around. It’ll be interesting to see a former protagonist in a different context.
Unfortunately, Infinity Ward won’t be including a cooperative campaign option, although Treyarch managed to include the feature in Call of Duty: World at War in a very polished manner. Also, MW2 sounds like it might be shorter than CoD4’s already short campaign.
Knowing Infinity Ward’s track record, the title will likely turn out to be superb. It’s just a shame to see the team once again won’t add co-op, an ironically modern gameplay feature, into the so-called Modern Warfare 2.
The extremely old school weapon will actually pin its victims to surfaces upon a killing shot; even if the target lives through a direct hit, they’ll still have an arrow protruding from their bodies. Groovy.
Valve has consistently supported Team Fortress 2 with new maps, unlockables and achievements since its 2007 release, all for free, and it’s a real testament to the company’s belief in PC gaming.
Now we eagerly await the inevitable Zelda mod using the new bow and arrow’s physics. Get to work!