Archive for December 30th, 2008



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Jack Thompson. Just when you thought that being disbarred was sure to cause the man to cut back on his theatrics, here comes a story from GamePolitics that is sure to go down as a “classic.” In an email exchange between Thompson and GP’s Dennis McCauley, the former attorney states that Take-Two’s stock tumble is divine vengeance, and he also has some choice things to say about Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick.

The exchange should be read in its entirety to grasp what dealing with Thompson is like, and to get a better idea of why the Florida Bar decided to strip him of his license to practice law. Some may find Thompson’s statements regarding non-Christians to be offensive. Heck, many Christians might find his statements offensive. This is an opportunity to read Jack Thompson “raw.”

Jack Thompson, GamePolitics discuss God’s wrath on Take-Two originally appeared on Joystiq on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 23:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

 

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2K exec critical of UK retail price slashing

Posted by Alexander Sliwinski
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30Dec 08

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2K Games Global President Christoph Hartmann warns UK games retailers that it’s making the same mistakes as music stores did in the region. He feels that retailers slash prices too quickly, many times on month-old software, to make room for new inventory. This is fairly different from the US, where the release price of games can stick (barring bombs or special sales) for a long period of time.

Granted, game prices in the UK start high (around $100) at release, but dropping prices shortly after trains the patient customer that they can get a better deal very soon. In contrast, notice how “used” prices in the US aren’t that much better than new, which teaches consumers that the release price is what they should expect for a while.

Hartmann believes that by focusing on the short-term and the latest blockbuster, UK companies are too quickly slashing prices on older games. In the end, Hartmann’s words sound like a passive attack on UK used game sales, which would make sense, because no money from those purchases goes into the publishers’ pockets. For example: If a new game gets a fast price cut, the used version of it will be even cheaper. Meaning, customers learn quickly to either wait for the first price cut or just buy used.

2K exec critical of UK retail price slashing originally appeared on Joystiq on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 22:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

 

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The latest piece of tech in the war on grandmas has gotta be Brother’s Quattro 6000D sewing machine, a beastly machine with specs that will help even the most diligent granny patch up those quilts or ripped teddies more efficiently. Once you get past the huge 50-inch workspace, you’ll notice the 4.5 x 7-inch Sharp HD LCD display and embedded runway lighting. Brother’s “InnovEye” and “Up-Close Viewer” technology places a camera right next to the needle to give the user a birds-eye view on the LCD to allow perfect placement before stitching. Advanced embroidery features and built-in tutorials should certainly mitigate any mishaps, and should you get the urge to plug every flash drive you own into it, there are 3 USB ports. From our perspective, it looks like the hardest part will be getting this monster home from the store and finding a place to store it — and what to attack with embroidered flowers first. No word on price or release date yet, but there are a few more glamor shots after the break.

Continue reading The Quattro 6000D: this ain’t your grandmomma’s sewing machine

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The Quattro 6000D: this ain’t your grandmomma’s sewing machine originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 22:10:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2008’s selection of downloadable games for Wii? A mixed bag. Surprising, we know. Should you not feel like rummaging through this metaphoric bag for gems — and, really, who would? — Wii Fanboy has done the dirty work for you.

These are the top 10 games you should have downloaded in its opinion, so don’t expect … the expected. Sega Master System games? Check. Bizarre imports? You bet. Undulating alien pinball? Oh yes. Get your eyes on the full list here.

2008’s must-have Virtual Console and WiiWare games originally appeared on Joystiq on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 21:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

 

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Citing “three independent sources close to Apple” including “one source that has actually held the [prototype] device,” TechCrunch is stepping into the pre-Macworld Expo rumor fray with the possibility of a large-format iPod touch device coming in the fall of next year. The hypothetical MegiPod would sport a 7″ or 9″ screen and, naturally, play media content and run apps from the iTunes App Store. Production conversations are ramping up now, say TC sources.

Why an iTablet, and why now? The post cites the presence of the App Store as the primary determinant that the market is ready for a touchable Apple product in supersized form: “Apple has been experimenting internally with large form tablet devices for years, one source says, but there was concern that users wouldn’t like the device. The difference now is the iTunes app store, which has thousands of games and other applications that are perfect for a touch screen device with an accelerometer.” TechCrunch says the big pod may not be a done deal, as we’ve seen a zillion Apple tablet rumors come and go — but that Apple is still planning to move forward, this time.

I’m not sure I would personally be in the market for a 7-inch, unpocketable iPod touch with the text input system featured on present-day devices; however, the expanded screen real estate and advances in the touch tech might combine to make a true typeable surface with room to finger-breathe. The more pressing question, then: since it’s hard enough now to keep other commuters and bystanders from peeking over your shoulder to see what you’re watching — how much worse would it be with that massive screen?

Meanwhile, we’ve made a conscious effort to steer clear of the other Macworld-related rumor today, floated by Gizmodo and irately attacked by CNBC. Whatever the source and whatever the motives, publishing unconfirmed Steve’s-health stories is (as we’ve seen) not a particularly prudent game to play.

TUAWRumor watch: TechCrunch says large-format iPod touch in 2009 originally appeared on The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW) on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 21:11:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Just like you, we get all sorts of gifts around the holidays here at Joystiq HQ. Probably unlike you, we don’t keep any of them (even the good ones!). With that in mind, we’ve got five days of regift giveaways planned, where you get some free stuff (and we get some of our HQ real estate back).

Today, we’re offering up the PlayStation 3 Wireless Keypad (our two word review: pretty terrible) and, since you need to charge the thing separately from your controller (no, really!) we’re throwing in the PlayStation 3 AC Adaptor. We’re still waiting for Sony to implement some sort of low-power charging solution in a future PS3 revision - until then, we’ll keep charging everything off the 360.

Here’s how you win:

  • Leave a comment expressing your holiday cheer … in txtspk.
  • You must be 18 years or older and a resident of the US or Canada (excluding Quebec)
  • Limit 1 entry per person
  • This entry period ends at 8:30 pm ET on Wednesday, December 31st. We’ll randomly select 1 winner at that time to receive the PlayStation 3 Wireless Keypad (ARV: $50) and the PlayStation 3 AC Adaptor (ARV: $25.00). Please check your e-mail!
  • For a list of complete rules, click here

Joyswag regift giveaway: PS3 Wireless Keypad and AC Adaptor originally appeared on Joystiq on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 20:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

 

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We’ve already seen it go down unofficially, but we’ve received word from HTC today that Android’s coveted “Cupcake” branch of updates and fixes — or at least a majority of it — will likely be making it to the G1 in the future as a legitimate over-the-air push. HTC isn’t involved in deciding what updates get pushed to the G1 or when, but given the update cadence so far and the G1’s support for Cupcake’s capabilities, the company believes that it’s just a matter of time before T-Mobile makes it happen. The timing is still a big question — HTC’s more or less out of the loop on the schedule, and it’s up to Google and T-Mobile to figure out how it’s going to play out. We’ll keep you updated as we find out more!

Update: We pressed HTC spokespeople to give us a little more to go on, but got the standard “we can’t comment on rumors or speculation” line. T-Mobile, Google, your move — you’ve got plenty of folks waiting. A belated Festivus gift, perhaps?

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HTC believes Cupcake will come to the T-Mobile G1 originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 20:17:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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While we feel that some objects shouldn’t be solar powered for the sake of being solar powered, we can’t help but dig Nextar’s approach here. The NXBT-001 / NXBT-002 seem to primarily differ only in the amount of charge they can hold, with the former offering 250 hours of standby time / 10 hours of talk time and the latter boasting 150 hours of standby time and 6 hours of yappin’. As for functionality, both devices are designed to enable handsfree calling in the car with any Bluetooth-enabled mobile, and of course, they each soak up the sun while you’re out cruising about. The best part? The fact that you no longer have to run yet another power cable to that 8-port cigarette adapter hub sitting in your center console. The pair will ship this Spring for $59.99 / $69.99 (thanks to a bundled caller ID display), respectively. Full release is after the break.

Continue reading Nextar cuts the cord with solar-powered in-car handsfree kits

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Nextar cuts the cord with solar-powered in-car handsfree kits originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 20:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30Dec 08

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It’s only been a month and a half since Richard “Lord British” Garriott left NCsoft but apparently the creator of the Ultima franchise and Ultima Online is ready to get back to making games again. In a new BBC web site article Garriott indicates his next game project will return him to the genre that made him famous and rich.

He is quoted as saying, “After 25 years at Origin, the last thing I wanted to make was yet another medieval fantasy game. Now, after a very interesting break, I’m keen to get back into the fray and work on a new game. Probably medieval fantasy and probably online; there’s something very powerful about getting people together.”

Garriott’s last project was, of course, the sci-fi MMO Tabula Rasa. After launching with much fanfare in October 2007 after a genesis of several years, NCsoft elected to shut down the game after the end of February 2009 due to poor sales. The decision came a little over a week after Garriott announced he was leaving the company.

Richard Garriott ready to make games again originally appeared on Big Download Blog on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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In addition to the debut of the production version of the Karma luxury plug-in hybrid, Fisker Automotive will also be unveiling a new concept at the Detroit Auto Show next month: the Fisker Sunset. We don’t have much beyond the teaser shot above, but we do know that Fisker Automotive CEO and namesake Henrik Fisker will announce details about the Sunset at the company’s press conference in Cobo Hall on January 12. Besides the green Karma, Fisker is perhaps best known for their coachbuilt SLs and BMWs, but Henrik Fisker is also one of the most influential designers in the last decade, with most of the current Aston Martin lineup and the late, great BMW Z8 attributed to his pen. We can’t wait to see what this wunderkind is up to now.

[Source: Fisker]

Detroit Preview: Fisker Sunset concept coming to Motown originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 19:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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