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A couple things people haven't updated about but should have:
  • Ron Gilbert is continuing to make his presence known, taking his game concept around to publishers hoping someone will bite. Also he is all shady about whether or not it's an adventure, but according to forumites over at AG, he has previously said it will be an RPG type game with comedy and adventure elements. Who knows, though? Well, Ron does.

  • Over at Telltale's Bone website, the "Extras" page has opened, featuring a new video clip, some concept art, screenshots, and other things worth poking around at. Like the gameplay videos recently posted at Gamespot, the new stuff on the Extras page looks pretty nice - the game seems to have shaped up into something great.
Video game news!
Despite my reputation as the Matthew Hopkins of POTC / Monkey Island comparisons, it is perhaps appropriately ironic that I once again open the can of worms. Hell, I started it last time. I just love that movie. But yeah, anyway, at the Comic Con in San Deigo... whenever it was, there was some Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Mans Chest footage. And old Deppo is to be seen escaping from some cannibals.

Unless one of the cannibals happens to have a lemon on his head, I think I'm safe. But feel free to make crazy hasty rumours. You know you want to.
Okay so I am a bit

But I've got to do something with my Thursday nights...
How am I going to drink my tea now!?

I've just released a new version of Psychonauts Explorer - the tool that allows you to rip resources such as music/voices/textures from the game.

New in this version:
  • The xbox audio codec is no longer needed. Audio files are now dumped to normal wav files.
  • Big improvements in sound ripping. All audio in the pc version now plays correctly as does 99% of the audio in the xbox version.
  • You can now view/save the artwork and textures from each level. (Look inside the .ppf level files).
  • Bugfixes relating to the xbox version
Get it here.
While probably not of interest to many (bring the adventure games back into stock, dammit), the LucasArts store has brought a few "older" games back into availability. (Re-)Introducing titles like:

Armed & Dangerous
Secret Weapons Over Normandy
Gladius
the beloved Wrath Unleashed (or "Warth Unleashed," as it's called on the street these days)
Clone Wars
Starfighter
Star Wars Force Commander
Bounty Hunter

all in glorious new budget editions. Have fun with that. Also, though probably not new, they've added back Escape from Monkey Island, which was nowhere to be seen since the "new and improved" store opened. Surely Labyrinth can't be far behind!
A long time ago in a galaxy basically around the corner in the grand scheme of things... It is a time of new content for the rebel forces over at Nightlight Productions as the first part of Lost Cause II: there?s still no hope goes online! The series is a ten part saga of short radio plays that you can download for free. They?re funny, action packed and do a great job of parodying the Star Wars universe... so listen to part one now! And you can grab all of the original series of Lost Cause here.

And if you remember Nightlight Productions did a series of radio plays set in Tierra De Los Muertos - the land of the dead - based around the same inspiration source as Grim Fandango. Well if you?re hungry for more content from that world then you can read a Manny-like blog address, which will be updated very frequently.

Keep visiting Nightlight Productions for more LucasArts Internet radio play related fun over the next few weeks!
Up today is a new Bone preview over at IGN. Naturally, it's worth a look. And don't forget to keep up with Telltale's site which is being pretty consistent with blog and news updates.

As you'll find detailed in the latest official Psychonauts newsletter, there's a rad promotion underway until September 24th which allows you to receive rare Psychonauts goodies for totally free by simply scanning and sending in a friends' Psychonauts receipt.

Walk around town donning your very own Whispering Rock t-shirt. Perhaps you'd prefer the miniature Psychonauts themed plasma ball. Whichever you choose, you'll get an additional deck of Psychonauts playing cards along with it. Check out all the hard details here.

PS: Those of you plotting to send in your own receipts will be saddened to hear that this offer is only valid for new receipts!

Because we love stealing stuff from PC Zone, we?ve illegally scanned another article that?s in issue 159 of the excellent UK gaming mag - a look at Sam & Max 2 and why it was cancelled. No link to Mojo was given (probably because we keep scanning their stuff and putting it up on the net) but the Zone gang did ask Deus Ex Machina for some comments, because, you know, Ron Gilbert has totally been involved with every adventure game ever. Just kidding, we love you really Ronzo!

Anyway, they also asked ?doctor? Wolfgang Von Brent about Bad Brain?s blundering moves, though unfortunately they don?t make fun of him. Mike Stemmle actually says some interesting stuff, though: ?I?ve kinda blocked [the cancellation] out, like memories of ritual Satanic abuse?, he sighs, hopefully not speaking from experience. The article also reveals the painful statistic that the game was 90% finished when it was cancelled, a fact that embarrasses LucasArts even further. Unfortunately the Golden Guy in his ivory tower was unavailable for comment, but there have been reports that Jim Ward has been seen laughing manically from his helicopter made out of money.

You ever wondered why we have adverts on this site? Well, it?s to make money of course. Every time you visit us the big companies pay us vast fortunes because they want you, our glorious readers, to buy their products. All this money (and we?re talking gold and silver here) gets put into a big fat fund which we use for important excursions like, you know, e3 and stalking Ron Gilbert. Anyway, this year all the wonderful money went to me and I took it all in a big suitcase with a dollar sign on it to Crete to have a whizzy-jolly time. It was all in the name of research, though; I was really reviewing Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis.

Found out how I got along on my holiday research trip here!

And incidentally, our thumbnail generator is broken because, as Remi puts it, of those "God damn LFN Nazis" - so you?ll just have to make do with broken images whilst I go for a fly in Ron Gilbert's old plane (bought of off him with Mojo funds, naturally)
So Psychonauts finally has a confirmed publisher in Europe: THQ. A release date has yet to be confirmed, though The Schafer is thinking it might be this fall. Here's hoping the game will make a bigger splash in Europe than it did in the US.
Did you know that Ron Gilbert loves flying and until recently owned his own plane? Well neither did I until I picked up issue 159 of everyone's favourite UK based Gaming Magazine PC Zone! Seems like the Zone gang met up with His Glory Upon High and interrogated him about what he's currently doing. Here's a quote:

"Having Tim Schafer and Dave Grossman on [Monkey Island 1] - which was just sheer luck - helped enormously, as they're fabulous writers. I had a miniature half-size pool table in my office and the three of us would just play pool for hours, coming up with puzzles, working out the plot points and laughing ourselves silly".

You can read the rest in the scans here, and if you're British then be sure to also pick up a copy of the mag for more top quality games journalism!

Centuries ago the hulking Idle Thumbs cornered Ron Gilbert in a seedy alley-way and interviewed him for cheap thrills. Now, in 2005, the concluding part of the interview has been published online for all to read.
"I remember back when I was doing Maniac Mansion, I wanted to use the word "shit" in it... I went to the guy who was running the games division at the time, and I wanted, you know, I wanted to say 'shit.' It was really important to me, part of 'the artistic expression of the game.' ...it was really interesting.?

Ron also shows how he fondly remembers Mojo interviewing him, back in the day - "I don't remember", he jokes - and spews some more of that loveable grumpiness, on, er, just about everything. Check it out here, and don?t forget to read part one and two if you haven?t already.
Aside from a bit of new concept art, we haven't heard much about Autumn Moon Entertainment or its in-development adventure A Vampyre Story since ties were broken between the developer and the, er...highly promising and well-respected German-based publisher Bad Brain Entertainment.

Well, today the web site offers a sign of life in the form of some new art in the gallery section (including a new screenshot that boasts the 3D Mona model) and a new news post:
Bill Tiller here with an AVS update. After a very good E3 we have been spending most of our time conducting business and haven?t had a chance to update our website until now.

We still don?t have a deal - yet, but the prospects are looking good and we will let you know right here the instant we have signed with a publisher. I can?t give any details yet due to the standard NDAs we have to sign, but I am feeling positive that we will have a deal signed very soon. Stay tuned.

In the meantime we are testing our new engine, creating our production schedules and budgets, and have finished our first pass at the 3D Mona model, done by the VERY talented Charles Berrnaert. Head on over to the Gallery section and take a look. Hope you like it.
Read the rest of here. Good to hear that Autumn Moon is still actively working on the title.
The Bone news just keeps rolling in. Up at Gamespot today is a new preview. It's well worth the read and features an exclusive interview with Telltale CEO Dan Connors.

Thanks to funcroc of this Adventure Gamers forum thread.




elTee recently decided to put on his nostalgia boots, and hike up the trail of LucasArts Memorabilia. Will your Day of the Tentacle trianglular box one day be worth as much as an original King Kong poster? elTee investigates.
As promised, Adventure Gamers has some new exclusive Bone content. Check out the Bringing Bone to Life movie preview, which offers a behind-the-scenes look at how Telltale brought the hand-drawn characters of the Bone universe to glorious 3D. The page also offers some new concept art.

You'll also want to check out the Telltale web site itself, which boasts the new Screenshot of the Week, a new online trading card (Thorn), and a new blog entry.

Update: And be sure to check out Gran'ma Ben, just added to the cast section.
If you can remember what happened yesterday, you might recall something about a Psychonauts story in Game Developer. Well lo and behold, the article is out in the wild and can be read by one and all.

A good read it is too; the postmortem is almost painfully honest at times. Who knows how long it'll be online, so go read the article now. And should it disappear, well, there might be other ways to get a hold of it.
Late breaking news: You can read the whole thing without a subscription over on this site.

Game Developer, a "leading U.S. trade publication for the video game industry," is featuring Psychonauts on the cover of its current issue.

game developer coverWord has it that there will be some new, possibly juicy (but probably not), information in there. This is what Gamasutra had to say:

The cover feature for the August 2005 issue is a postmortem of Double Fine's warped action platform title Psychonauts. which went through two publishers and four years of cinched belts before seeing the light of day. What holds a development team together when the game they're making is literally straining toward psychosis? Game Developer strives to find out.
If last month's Idle Thumbs preview wasn't enough to slake your desire for more Bone-related goodness, Adventure Gamers has now put up one of their own. It's lengthy, informative, and offers a bit of new concept art and screenshots. It also promises some more Bone stuff later this week.
In his recent siggraph keynote address, George Lucas mentioned the direction he wants his computer games division to move in.
"I want to get to a point where you can talk to the game and it will talk back." According to Lucas, a system with artificial intelligence is the "ultimate goal" of those working in the gaming industry.

"I'm really pushing for advances in artificial intelligence and intelligent voice-recognition technology," he added in front of the crowd of thousands.

Lucas believes such technology would allow gamers to be the stars of games that are even more like movies than the current crop of video games: "I think that will change games from first-person shooter narratives to intelligent and challenging first-person shooter-type dramas."
Games that are even more like movies than the current crop of video games? Joy. And speech recognition in games! Revolutionary.
The screen of the week over at Telltale Games reveals the dialogue system in Bone. From what it looks like, you can dynamically choose which person in a group to talk to, without leaving the dialogue system. Or I might be wrong. Judge for yourself.

image
Gran'ma Ben's Farm has been added to the environments page on the Bone site. The glimpses of game continue to impress and look very faithful to the comic visually.
Some cool updates up on the Telltale web site. First up is the Throw Me a Bone sweepstakes. Enter and you have the chance to win some awesome prizes such as a new PC, pre-loaded with the Bone adventure game. Yowza!

Next is the Throw Me a Bone card quest, an interesting card collecting/trading thing that you should read into.

Telltale has also introduced the screenshot of the week. The first one offers a glimpse of the game's unique dialog system, and it looks really great.

And finally, Telltale continues its progressive Telltale staff interview with Greg Frank.

Check it all out.
There has been some discussion on the forums about what happened to the captain's promised Psychonauts cameo. Well, it turns out that the captain's part was, in a shocking development, cut!

Mystery solved, and at least these guys made it.
Whoa. Everybody was thinking it, and now someone's gone and done it. A touchscreen-aware Nintendo DS port of ScummVM is now available care of some crazy people. Someone with the ability to load homebrew DS stuff onto their system needs to check this out. There's some discussion of the port here.