Sunday, September 9, 2007

Insomniac Games Interview about Ratchet and Clank

The Mad Gamer was lucky enough to get an interview with the highly respected Insomniac Games. They open with these two questions:

Firstly : this title marks the start of a brand-new series of next-generation games for our heroes. What will be the first thing we will notice when we slide the title in the PS3?

The first thing anyone playing the game will immediately notice is the beautiful, highly detailed worlds that we have brought to life in Ratchet & Clank Future. Our tools and technology teams have done an amazing job continuing to develop our proprietary engine technology, and combined with the creative imagination of our artists, we are able to create an all-new galaxy begging to be explored.

Tell us about the overhaul of the engine technology to take advantage of the new console?

We are continuing to build our Insomniac Engine and have made many improvements to it since Resistance: Fall of Man. The one huge focus for us has been moving more of our processes over to the SPUs on the CELL processor. This has allowed us to get our physics and effects systems running roughly four times faster than it did in Resistance at nearly double the framerate, which is something you can see in weapons like the Tornado Launcher.

Read the full interview at the link.

[Read R&C Interview]

Warhawk Sells Over 100K in it's First Week

Incognito's Warhawk online multiplayer title exclusively for PlayStation 3 has sold just over 110,000 units in it's first week, making it one of the fastest selling PlayStation 3 titles yet. Warhawk's success marks the beginning of a steady stream of quality AAA titles for PS3 this fall.

[Via VGChartz]

Unreal Tournament III Gives Us 16 New Screens

Unreal Tournament III is coming at you faster than you think. Thats with these 16 new images we have curtsy of CVG. View the images at the link.

[View Unreal Tournament III Images]

Petition to Remake Final Fantasy VII Sent to Square-Enix

Well, the Remake Final Fantasy VII has been rising and rising. So they shipped it off to Square Enix. Here’s their response:

Thank you for contacting SQUARE ENIX Customer Support,

We hope this letter answers your questions.

Our parent company, SQUARE ENIX of Japan, has no current plans to create a sequel or remake to that particular title at this time. This is not to say that it will never happen, it’s just that their development teams are currently focusing on numerous other projects.

We hope this information has been of assistance.

Neil- SQUARE ENIX Customer Support

I was hoping for something more "not computer response look a like" if you catch my drift. But it seems Square is getting the message, and hey, you never know if they are just hiding the big announcement for the Tokyo Game Show 2007.

[Via FileFront]

Heavenly Sword: New CG Commercial

A new commercial has appeared for Heavenly Sword. It's in it's CG glory and shows Nariko fighting off many soldiers starting with a drop down. Enjoy.

[Via GameTrailers]

Ratchet & Clank Future EU Release & Boxart Revealed?

Over at, on their page listing for Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction, they have a new boxart and a release date for the game. The release date is 26/10/2007 which is 3 days after the North American release. The boxart is shown above. Don't mind the stretched-out-ness of it, because thats how all boxarts are, so this may be genuine.


PlayStation 3 Releases for the Week of September 9, 2007

Prepare for a great week for PlayStation 3 gamers. Next week, we have one of the PlayStation 3's most anticipated titles releasing. Here is the list:

US Releases
∙ NHL 2k8 - September 10, 2007
∙ DiRT - September 11, 2007
∙ NHL 08 - September 11, 2007
∙ Heavenly Sword - September 12, 2007

EU Releases
∙ Heavenly Sword - September 12, 2007
∙ DiRT - September 11, 2007

ASIAN Releases
Megazone 23: Aoi Garland
Megazone 23: Aoi Garland Limited Edition
With Heavenly Sword coming out, you know the PlayStation community is going to be buzzing with thoughts, reviews, and remarks.

We also have Collin McRae's DiRT being released. Another anticipated PlayStation 3 dirt racing game. Alongside that is two NHL games, one from EA and one from 2K Games. Which one will be better? Only the releases will tell.... or the reviews, either one.

PlayStation Store: The True Story [Update 9/9/07]

Note: This article has had a major rehaul, and has been bumped to the latest news.


The PlayStation Store is the center of the PlayStation Network. Users look forward to a one day a week update. When that Thursday arrives, it usually results in disappointment.

Let's take a look at Xbox Live. They receive content whenever it's ready. They receive many multi-platform demos. Each demo they receive are about 2-3 days apart. Other than demos, they have a video marketplace, which also has streaming previews. When one logs on to Xbox Live, it feels like the ultimate experience. There is unlimited possibilities of the things they can do and you feel like you can play, and watch media all day. The browsing is very easy and simple to find what you want, and descriptions are right there when you highlight the content.

Now let's look at the PlayStation Network. We receive content one day a week, while the rest of the week is just constant waiting for the next update. Each demo we receive are 7 days apart. When we log-on to the PlayStation Store, we are faced with a bland design built on a webpage, bad for archived content. When your on the Network, your interface is an XMB, with sections for videos, music, and games. Under the games, all the demos are listed also, which can be quite annoying. A section for demos under games would be nice. But when your on the Network, you can't stay on for long, it gets boring and tiresome, compared to Xbox Live's fun.


The current PlayStation Store design kind of bland. And it being on the browser really makes it worse. Currently, two really good designs have been made for the PlayStation Store. Check out this link:

A very crafty member named Cruzader made his view of what the PlayStation Store should like look. And sorry to say Sony, his is much better than the current. Now, I'm not saying we should use this specific design, but I'm saying Sony, you should get working on a new one, that is not built into a webpage. It should be a built in program on the PLAYSTATION 3, so that it launches better, and goes faster.

The other one, is made by us at onAXIS:

This one is Sony's with a nice twist. Sony, you should check these out, maybe contact onAXIS or Cruzader and try to work on that design. Maybe even make up your own new one. But not one that is in the web browser and looks different on SDTV's. It should be one that loads up from the PlayStation 3, not web based.


Now lets look at the demos section, here are all the current multi-platform demos that Xbox Live has, and the PlayStation Network does not. You'd think 11 months into the game, the company would see whats going on, guess not. Check out the list:

  • Sonic The Hedgehog
  • F.E.A.R.
  • Tony Hawk's Project 8
  • NBA Street Homecourt
  • Monster Madness Ex
  • Fatal Inertia
  • The Bigs
  • Surfs Up (odd they got it and we didnt seeing as the movie was made at Sony)
  • Vampire Rain
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End
  • Blacksite: Area 51
  • Medal of Honor: Airborne
  • Madden NFL 08
  • TimeShift
  • Eternal Sonata
Sony said they stopped the Official Playstation Magazine because they can provide demos on the PlayStation Network. Though that hasn't been working out well.

But, what about the PlayStation 2 demos? We can’t even get those anymore thanks to the cancellation of the Official Playstation Magazine. I’d understand if no new games come out for PlayStation 2 anymore, but new games do come out. We should of seen demos on the PlayStation Network for PlayStation 2 games like:
  • God of War II
  • Final Fantasy XII
  • Okami
  • Shin Megami Tensai: Persona 3
  • Winning Eleven: Pro Evolution Soccer 2007
  • Wild ARMs 5
  • Naruto: Uzumaki Chronicles 2
I'm pretty sure we would of seen these if the Official PlayStation Magazine was not canceled. And we should be seeing upcoming demos on the network for upcoming games like:
  • Dragonball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3
  • Manhunt 2

With the PlayStation Store also comes games. Most people would like to test play the game since you cannot rent them. How come we don't receive demos/trial versions of each arcade game so we can see if we like it before we buy it? Every Xbox Live Arcade game has a trial version.

XBOX Live gets 1-3 arcade games a week. So far we get around 1 game every 2-3 weeks. Start getting those indie and even lower unknown developers to start developing games for the network.

Now as you can see, only a few of the PlayStation Store exclusives are retro remakes. Though we do have a few, such as Rampage, Joust, etc. A quote from Peter Dille, the SCEA Head of Marketing explains why:
"Whereas our competition takes a bunch of old content and catalogs content from previous generations and offers that in a download fashion, our development organization are making games specifically for PS3."
But Peter, is that really a bad thing? Does seeing games like Sonic the Hedgehog be released on the Xbox Live Arcade make you want to play it? It sure does make me. I would love to play all the retro games Live received on the PlayStation 3, along with these new games Sony wants to bring out too.


With the PlayStation Store currently also home to downloadable PSone games, how come we aren't seeing any? Japan just received 14 PSone games a few weeks ago, and we haven't received any PSone games since that Castlevania update. Sony, look at Wii's Vitrual console, they have over 120 old games, we only have around 15 PSone games.


Also, on the PlayStation Network, the ability to change our country would be nice. I have a friend, Joseph, who is moving to Europe and he does not want to make a whole new PlayStation Network ID, as he likes his online ID. And thanks to not being able to change his country, he will have to make a whole new account.


I've noticed the updates for countries like Europe and such hasn't been as "good" as North Americas. You need to start making it fair for everybody else. Or else corruptions will erupt, kind of like this article here.


The conclusion of this article, is that Sony is really losing it in the online marketplace right now. Xbox Live is the ultimate experience, Wii is home to 120+ Virtual Console games, and the PlayStation Store is a big flunk.

Thats only for the moment. Maybe if Sony sees this article, they will hear me, not only me, hear the PlayStation Community. Only time will tell.


There is more going wrong with you guys besides just the messed up PlayStation Network. There is also the matter of exclusives and your touch with third-parties. You let all your exclusives go to third-parties. Look at Virtua Fighter 5, they got it on the Xbox 360, but with online. Look at Assassin's Creed, Devil May Cry 4, etc. Come on Sony, I say it all the time, STEP YOUR GAME UP.

Madden 08 Roster Update: Vick Disappears

Today is the start of the NFL Season (Eagles vs. Packers 1PM EDT), and EA has released a roster update for Madden 08 on all next-gen consoles. That includes the PlayStation 3.

With that update came the removal of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick. Poor little Vick. Here is a tip from PS3Fanboy:

"Vick's departure makes cover boy Vince Young the fastest QB in the league, making him your best choice for running the "bootleg every down and hope to catch the defense sleeping" offense."
Well, I guess you Vick fans will have to play without him.

[Via PS3Fanboy]

Game Informer: Heaveny Sword Scores an 8.75 and a 9

Yes, the game got another terrific score. Game Informer has reviewed it and here are their final thoughts:

A cinematic tale of courage and vengeance, plus lots of fighting

If you can tear your eyes away from the swirling blades and dazzling CG, you’ll see some pretty environments, too

The voice acting brings the characters to life, and a wonderful score fuels the story and the action

ulling off combos and switching among the styles works well, but the lack of an active block is a pain. Also, some of the button-press minigames seem designed for you to fail the first time

Combat is fluid, and the story takes some unexpected twists. Be aware that the fun won’t last forever, though


The first reviewer Joe Juba has given Heavenly Swordan 8.75/10
The second reviewer Andrew Reiner has given Heavenly Sword a 9/10
Read the full review at the link.

[Read Heavenly Sword Review]

Nihilistic Speaks of Conan the Barbarian

Conan the Barbarian borrows a bit from God of War in terms of gameplay style and presentation. Combos are promised to be varied and easy to pull off, and the fighting looks pretty intense judging from what's in the clip.

[Via QJ.NET]