Basically THQ had the Star Wars licence to produce Star Wars games for iPhone and iPad, including the cool Falcon Gunner which turns the iPhone's camera into the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon. By tomorrow, Friday 1st April, the licence would expire and LucasArts would stop this and three other Star Wars games from being sold on Apple's store. This would mean that LucasArts would release one game and take away four, equalling minus three games being released. That's impressive even for LucasArts.
Fortunately however, sanity has prevailed and the games are safe on the App Store. However, this quote from Kotaku needs to be restated:
Calls yesterday and today to LucasArts, the Star Wars company's video game division have not been returned.
UPDATE: Now you've seen that first video, here's the second.
See the update on the same page for Ron Gilbert's response, and click here for the subsequent "Woohoo!" from Moon director Duncan Jones, and here for Ron Gilbert's response to that.
Anyone here seen Moon? What do you think of it?
Get Tannen, last month's Back to the Future episode, finally sees release on the North American PlayStation Network today with a European release following soon. "Soon" is also the release date for the iPad port. It'll be the first time Telltale doesn't screw over iPad owners by releasing only the first episode of a series.
Last, Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People was added to the March 23 update of the European PSN, following last year's December release on the North American PSN.
This release, currently in the Apple approval process, is called Middle School Confidential Book 1: Be Confident Who You Are, and is an interactive adaptation of the first graphic novel in a series scribed by Annie Fox and illustrated by one Matt Kindt. This appears to be less of a game than a spruced up reader for an existent graphic novel, but I point it out because, well, David Fox!
Those other postmortems are an embarrassment of riches, too.
I know Mojo is usually a bit more sophisticated than other sites, we don't usually degrade ourselves by posting sexist comments, but I gotta say... Claudia clearly isn't a teenager anymore. Her voice is much deeper.
Anyway, it's coming out, so don't forget about it!
In response to some ¬¬ themed feedback about the small helping of concept art found on the Collector's Disc for Sam & Max: The Devil's Playhouse, or maybe just because he's cool, Jake has made a big gallery of concept art for the season available, and you are sure to be contented by its abundance.
In this episode Sam & Max get a new case, and Max eats a table leg.
The series has apparently gained "the blessing of Steve Purcell," which presumably means he has chanted Latin hymns and sprinkled holy water over the web-site.
Discuss this in the forums.
Lace Mamba, which we've already reported will be doing TMI's retail release in the UK on April 8th (as they did around the same time last year for Ghost Pirates of Vooju Island), believes that the performance in Germany bodes well for their own launch:
“We think this is a very good indicator for success in the UK,” Lace Mamba Global’s head of marketing Claas Wolter told MCV.
“There is huge demand for a boxed release of Tales of Monkey Island, as proven by the amount of pre-orders and positive feedback. Monkey Island is one of the top adventure game brands in the world.”
You'll recall that the UK version's packaging will boast unique covert art. While the German release bears the Steve Purcell painting that Telltale pre-order customers got in the form of an insert for their Collector's DVD, the UK box uses an unused Purcell design fully painted by Telltale concept artist Ryan Jones. It's rather cool-looking, though the reaction to this multitude of cool covers must surely be bittersweet for the Monkey Island completest with a mortgage to pay off.
Giant Bomb's latest Bombcast (imaginative name, eh?) contains a short segment where they visit Double Fine to look at the company's upcoming game Trenched, including details of the gameplay and the setting.
Telltale Games have now opened their insider forums for anyone who pre-orders Jurassic Park: The Game which has a tentative release date of...sometimes next month. The blog post also gives us the first glimpse of the DVD cover.
Which is all well and good, but where's the apology for not making Loom 2?
Still unsure whether or not you should buy Telltale Games' Nelson Tethers: Puzzle Agent or CSI: Fatal Conspiracy? Why not check out SurplusGamer's review of Puzzle Agent or Jason's review of Fatal Conspiracy. Fresh from Mojo's archives!
Straandlooper were looking for ways to continue their series and get it onto some other platforms, while we were interested in exploring some aspects of working on projects with external studios. Our goals fit together nicely, and we liked each other, so we’re making it happen.
Telltale, of course, has had a bang-up success releasing episode one games for iOS devices. Episode 2+... Not so much, so I suppose we'll see.
And let me just toss this one in here to conserve on the Mojo energy bill: Stacking got stroked in a Gamasutra article dealing with game difficulty.
The first is Video Games as Art: An Apology for Roger Ebert. This was a lecture delivered by none other than Brian Moriarty (of Loom and, in an alternate universe, The Dig fame), the subject of which you could probably guess. By all accounts the talk was worth hearing, but unfortunately there are nothing but a few quotes reprinted online. Keep an eye out for the content of the speech to appear on Moriarty's official site someday.
Then there was a panel by Clint Hocking, LEC's big profile hire from last year and the studio's current Creative Director, whose creativity we hope to see imbued in an LEC game should the day come that they choose to make games again - but let's not get greedy. He gave a presentation about meaning in games, and this is the best write-up I found on it.
Ron Gilbert apparently also spoke about Maniac Mansion, but from what I know it was a repeat at most of the talk he gave in Germany (which, need I remind you, is fully streamable online!).
What David rightly wanted us to be aware of was the fact that amongst the nominations you will find the following seminal works and Mojo darlings: Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders (Era 2 - Commodore 64 - Adventure Genre), Grim Fandango (Era 4 - DOS/Windows - Adventure Genre), and Psychonauts (Era 5 - Microsoft Xbox - Action Genre).
So make your voice heard, and do your part to ensure that these classics may bask in the eternal prestige they deserve. "It belongs in a museum!"
Update: As Kroms (not to mention Ron Gilbert) notes, Monkey Island 1 will be playable at the exhibit, having leapfrogged the entire voting process due to its inherent worthiness.
Kind of regrettable. And just a sample of the kind of action you can get in on by visiting the old IRC channel (that's #monkey-island at irc.gamesurge.net) every now and again.
For the most part, the design doc glimpses include some cool early sketches, like a flaming LeChuck concept by Steve Purcell and some rough background drawings. Aside from the pictures, it's also just interesting on an obsessive fandom level to get a sneak at some of the verbiage from the actual design docs. Oh, and did I mention that the Full Throttle batch includes two deleted scenes, complete with dialog text? One involves a lost puzzle where Ben must evade Maureen's Uncle Pete at the mink farm, and the other is an extended sequence at the Smash-a-Torium. Do not wait for ATM to compile these on his web site - check it all out now!
Bill also verifies what you probably already assumed: that A Vampyre Story: Year One is a project the Autumn Moon team is working on for free. Whether this is something they're doing in the hopes of eventually landing a publisher (a la AVS1) or if they're planning on self-publishing (not unthinkable, given that it's headed for the iPad in chunks), it would explain the slow development, lack of publicity and the implication that the developers are taking other gigs in order to eat.
The guys behind the music of Monkey Island 2: Special Edition, Jesse Harlin and Wilbert Roget, II, discuss composing, arranging, the perils of iMUSE, and being suave in this exclusive interview over here.
In related news, Marty Mulrooney, the guy who interviewed Dominic Armato for Alternative Magazine Online, has been publishing a series of interviews with AJ LoCascio, who is the voice of Marty McFly in Back to the Future: The Game. So far, three parts are available and you can read them here, here, and here.
In the spirit of this development (get it?), I'll borrow this next part from Eurogamer:
This is a game about really quite horrid aliens killing humans. But those humans have muscles of their own - metal muscles; they stomp around in giant customisable mechanised robot suits, blasting the blue-tinted baddies with cannons the size of cars.
The link also contains screenshots and some sort of trailer. Anyways, I am probably/hopefully being too harsh on the usually-creative Double Fine. We shall see.
"Excel sheets don't work for us very well because they're so big, so we have to build very robust processes," Mitchell said. "The more specific you are about your process, the better the tools you're going to get out of it. You're going to build a better GUI and better cinematics design tools if you're specific about what you need for localization up front."
Better news: Tim Schafer is currently exploiting a well-deserved invite to host the GDC for the second year in a row. There's probably already some good footage on the net somewhere, and maybe we can be bothered to find it for you once the show's finished.
*Figure may have been confused with the population of Chicago
And if you find out when that is, let us know.
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