LucasArts at E3 2006

30 Apr, 2006, 18:01 | Posted by: jp-30 | Comments: 13
As well as the first public showing of Indiana Jones? and the Power of Euphoria? at E3 on May 10-12 and the probable first showing of LEGO Star Wars: The Original Trilogy, it seems that an expansion pack for the latest Star Wars RTS Empire at War will be announced. There was a tipoff here on the LucasArts forums a few days ago;
We've been preparing for E3 and it's been a wild crazy ride. If anyone is going to E3 in a couple of weeks, stop by the LucasArts booth and check out the line up for this year. There are some really great games in the works including more stuff in store for Star Wars: Empire at War.
Also there has been a passing mention of Vader's backstory in a recent Jim Ward interview which gaming sites everywhere have taken to mean that there is a Darth Vader game in the works. Ward has also mentioned in the past year that he would like to see Mercenaries become an ongoing franchise, so it won't be any great surprise if a Mercenaries sequel is announced.
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LucasArts news roundup

28 Apr, 2006, 21:26 | Posted by: jp-30 | Comments: 9
A few snippets of LucasArts news have gone unreported... until now!

1. The words "MONKEY ISLAND" are currently on the LucasArts homepage! In a survey! In a survey for "least likely E3 game announcement".

2. A new Star Wars game was released. Empire at War is LucasArts latest stab at an RTS title. It was developed by Petroglyph who house a number of the Westwood Studios alumni. The game has garnered generally positive reviews, but appears to lack that spark that would make it into a classic of the genre.

3. Yippee! One of the most anticipated Star Wars games since the original Knights of the Old Republc, LEGO Star Wars is on its way. Lots of gaming sites are redistributing the LucasArts articles and new screenshots are appearing regularly. The forthcoming Original Trilogy LEGO Star Wars game will feature a number of improvements over its predecessor, including the ability to mix and match parts to create your own playable minifig character (including the ability to import the 50 or so characters from the first game). The vehicle levels are no longer rail shooters. And the bonus kits are flyable / drivable this time around.

4. E3's coming up. No doubt LEGO Star Wars and the next Indiana Jones game will be demoed. Expect another anouncement or two, perhaps another Mercenaries game. And another Star Wars game, possibly one based on the exploits of Darth Vader between episodes III and IV.

5. Some stuff is happening with the MMORPG Star Wars Galaxies. It's either being dumbed down or being made more interesting and fun, depending on which side you are listening to.
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Lamp of the Tentacle

28 Apr, 2006, 21:04 | Posted by: jp-30 | Source: Hebrew Quest | Comments: 3
TheGreyMatter over on the adventuregamers forums has spotted an incredible piece of Day of the Tentacle fan art by Mutajon at hebrewquest.com.

DOTT fan sculptures

Neat!
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So says IGN. Pointing out that thus far next-gen games offer nothing new except for some extra bells and whistles, they for some reason seem to think that LucasArts' decision to make the upcoming Indiana Jones game employ "euphoria," a new animation technology that allows you to do incredibly innovative things like make your enemies' reactions to your attacks more realistic (WOW!), will change all that. IGN, which says that it has the "potential for a new kind of gaming experience," and LucasArts which proclaims that "It's what next-gen is about," seem to be pretty excited.

So yes. This certainly proves that developers are finally starting to learn that it's unique core gameplay, and not real-world AI improvements that make a game stand out. I don't know what we'd do without companies like LucasArts constantly pushing this industry forward. Hopefully the actual, you know, game is cool too.

Update: Here's LucasArts' Press Release on the new Indy game and the euphoria technology. LucasArts will demonstrate euphoria in action when it debuts its next-generation Indiana Jones game on May 10-12 at the E3 Expo in Los Angeles, CA.
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Tis scurvy-inducing

19 Apr, 2006, 17:11 | Posted by: Gabez | Comments: 3
Listen up, kids: the Plunder 3D web-site has been updated with a bunch of new stuff! New screenshots, new downloads, a new design, a new forum, a new teaser trailer, a new... well, you get the idea. Just head on over there and enjoy!
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Sam & Max seven

19 Apr, 2006, 16:52 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 1
The seventh page of the Sam & Max webcomic is up. What the hell is going on?
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Bone team talks about Bone

17 Apr, 2006, 16:31 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 0
On Thursday (Oops!) GameBoomer posted an interview with Dave Grossman (designer/writer), Heather Logas (designer/writer), and Dave Bogan (art director/animator) about The Great Cow Race. It's a good read, especially since we get to hear reponses about the challenges of adapting Jeff Smith's story and world straight from the horse's (or cow's?) mouth. View!
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Yes, yes. It has been revealed in this New York Times article (free subscription required) that LucasArts head-honcho Jim Ward is a huge fan of that Disneyland ride. Also revealed is that LucasArts won't be able to rely on Star Wars so heavily any more, and that there is a yet-unnanounced in-house Star Wars game currently being developed (possibly based on Darth Vader). And there's another Indy Jones game in the works, though that has been known for some time.

But hey, what's a Pirates of the Carribean fan to do when he's looking for non-Star Wars IP to develop at his video-game company? What indeed?
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CSI demo now available

14 Apr, 2006, 22:24 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 4
Right over here. There are English and Spanish versions available. I don't know what section of the game the demo is as I'm currently on a non-gaming computer, but give it a try.

Update: The demo is apparently the game's second case, the one focused around a murder at a game expo after a publisher cancels the long-antipated original game Fuzzy and Bill in favor of the proven blockbuster sequel Gutwrench 3.
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Bone week recap

14 Apr, 2006, 18:20 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 3
Wow! Let's look back the fruits of Adventure Gamers' impressive (not to mention suggestive) celebration of Bone in the last few days:
  • AG kicked things off with a Bone giveaway contest, the winners of which have been announced here (Thrik you bastard)

  • On Wednesday they published their own review of The Great Cow Race, giving the game a 4 out of 5.

  • Their developer chat with Telltale was held with great success. It closed about an hour ago but you can of course read all of the postings here.

  • Finally, check out this great interview they had with Bone creator Jeff Smith. He's apparently quite fond of Telltale's efforts in adapting the series.
Congrats to Adventure Gamers on their incredible work in maintaining their Bone vigor for a full five days. It's got to be some kind of record.
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Telltale chat in ten minutes

14 Apr, 2006, 12:47 | Posted by: Remi | Comments: 0
The Adventure Gamers Telltale chat is starting in just about ten minutes (10am PST.) Run this way if you are inclined to participate.

Update: You totally missed it!
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Bone: The Great Cow Race released!

12 Apr, 2006, 12:45 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 7
There's not much else to say, other than go buy it and get playing.

Update: The full soundtrack has been released... for free! There's also new combo deals for Bone parts 1 and 2 over at the shop.
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Mojo reviews Cow Race

11 Apr, 2006, 16:29 | Posted by: Remi | Comments: 12
I don't know which is more surprising; that we actually published another review, or that it appeared before the game was released. Regardless!

The second Bone game is completely reviewed, and quite enjoyable it is. (The game that is.) Read it and post your own thoughts in the comments.

Update: Just to clarify; the game is released tomorrow, Wednesday 12th.
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Eurogamer reviews The Great Cow Race

10 Apr, 2006, 12:18 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 18
They give the game a respectable 7 out of 10, concluding that:
Despite some moments of confusion, The Great Cow Race is definitely a marked improvement to Out From Boneville. With a much more solid, old fashioned return to the adventuring principles that we know and love, it's definitely worth a look for those of us still clinging onto the beloved notion that point and click adventures are here to stay. For the price, it'd be rude not to.
Read the whole thing. Two more days!

Update: If you speak Spanish, another review has appeared at La Aventura es La Aventura, giving the game an 80%.
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FiringSquad interviews Telltale

09 Apr, 2006, 16:44 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 3
That's right, there's more Cow Race stuff out there that you haven't seen yet! Check out this interview with Dan Connors. This is the third sentence.
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Vampyre demo gets some help

08 Apr, 2006, 16:27 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 0
According to the latest Autumn Moon news post, they have enlisted in the help of two companies, Pileated Pictures and Golden Goose Games, to work together on a technology demo to show to prospective publishers. Bill Tiller assures that "With a technology demo complete, the next stage of production will be just around the corner."

The name Pileated Pictures may sound familar to you. Mojo mentioned it as one of the three new (at the time) companies founded by ex-LucasArts employees, the other two being Telltale and Autumn Moon. Pileated is not specifically a games company so much as an all-purpose multimedia developer. Golden Goose Games I've never heard of, but they do have a web site with text, links, and pictures, so I trust them.

Let's hope their collaboration is successful and puts A Vampyre Story one step closer to being made!
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AG declares Bone week

07 Apr, 2006, 22:33 | Posted by: Jason | Source: AG | Comments: 1
Formerly known as the last week of Lent, the five days following April 10th will finally be designated for their real purpose. Adventure Gamers announces that during this time it will be dedicated to providing Telltale content in celebration of the release of The Great Cow Race. In addition to the goodies they promise (including a Bone giveaway), they will culminate the event by hosting a chat with various members of the Telltale team so that you might harass them or otherwise make a shameful spectacle of yourself until you're either booted or get the answers you want.

Read all about it here.
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The Great Cow Race next week?

06 Apr, 2006, 20:33 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 5
This month's Telltale newsletter sure makes it seem that way! The Great Cow Race is set to be released on April 12th! Boffo!
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Wheeee!

06 Apr, 2006, 16:54 | Posted by: A Pirate! Yar! | Comments: 2

Oh my fucking god

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Tim is asked questions, answers them

04 Apr, 2006, 23:42 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 6
1up has reprinted a thrilling Tim Schafer interview that originally appeared in Official Playstation Magazine. Lots of good stuff, of course, though details on the new game are minimal. Still, stuff.

In other Double Fine news, the international version of Psychonauts is now available directly from Double Fine, so now you can get it signed. They've also got two new double-headed baby logo t-shirts.
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In its latest issue, Edge Online has published an article about (the lack of) humor in modern video games. As you might expect, the works of Ron and Tim get mentioned a lot (and even Armed & Dangerous gets a nod!), and Ron himself is quoted throughout the article. Now that's comedy!
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Telltale doesn't like money

04 Apr, 2006, 17:22 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 3
Today Telltale Games has announced the restructuring of its pricing model. The new price for the downloadable versions of all the Bone games is $12.99. The CD-ROM version of the game is reduced by five dollars as well, and according to Adventure Gamers (or the newsletter if you're subscribed to it), the packaged version of The Great Cow Race will be discounted for those who already own Out from Boneville.

Read Telltale's full press release here and increase your pledge to the local charity.
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Telltale: You fools.

01 Apr, 2006, 13:48 | Posted by: Huz | Comments: 17
"After careful evaluation of current market place realities and underlying economic considerations, we've decided that this was not the appropriate time to launch a graphic adventure on the PC."

So states Jack Rodford, Telltale's head honcho, as he in one quick sweep stops any further development of Bone and Sam & Max. While the announcement might come as a surprise to Mojo readers, it sort of makes sense considering that Telltale's CSI game currently is enjoying great success. "Next up is a Dan Pettit headed game based on Desperate Housewives," says Randy Breen, Telltale's recently hired creative consultant. "Think Grand Theft Auto but with the girls from Wisteria Lane." He further states that, "a game with walking and talking dogs and rabbits just doesn't make sense."

When contacted about the announcement, super adventure site Adventure Gamers did not seem visibly upset. "We still have Scratches 2, which features both graphics and puzzles. That in itself makes it a five star game."
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