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A not so humble bundle

31 May, 2012, 21:24 | Posted by: Remi | Be the first to comment!

Sure, you already own Psychonauts, but here's a chance to buy it again, as part of the Humble Indie Bundle. Why would you want to do that? Well, it's the whole charity thing, but more importantly, the other games in the bundle are pretty much stone cold classics. Limbo, Sword & Sworcery EP, Amnesia: The Dark Descent, and (for a $7.34 donation at the time of writing) Bastion? Oh! Em! Gee! to that! Plus you get all the soundtracks thrown in too, all for an amount of your choice!

The games are available on Mac, Linux, and PC, and there are few excuses not to do this. Run and donate!

Miscellaneous news

SpaceVenture Playable Demo, Space Quest Series on Sale

31 May, 2012, 07:24 | Posted by: Jennifer | Comments: 2

Since we've been posting about the SpaceVenture Kickstarter, I thought I'd update with news that a playable prototype demo has been released which already contains a lot of the humor that the Space Quest series is known for. The Guys from Andromeda (the creators of SpaceVenture, and the creators of the Space Quest series) plan to release a new prototype demo each time a $100,000US goal is met. It's currently just above $270,000US (54% funded) with less than two weeks left to go.

Also, The Space Quest Collection is today's daily deal on Steam. For 9 more hours, you can pick up all 6 Space Quest games for only $5US.

The Space Quest games play just like SpaceVenture, so if you enjoy those games, pick a pledge tier and support SpaceVenture.

Miscellaneous news

Bundle in a Box: Adventure Bundle

30 May, 2012, 23:58 | Posted by: Jennifer | Comments: 3

It's rare for an indie bundle to include an adventure game, so the Bundle in a Box: Adventure Bundle is a very rare thing, as this indie bundle includes nothing but adventure games.

Like the other indie bundles out there, this is a pay-what-you-want bundle to support developers and charity. For a minimum of less than $2US, you will receive the LucasArts-inspired adventures Ben There Dan That: Special Edition and its sequel Time Gentlemen, Please from Size Five Games. You will also get the adventure set in a neo-noir dystopian future, Gemini Rue, from Wadjet Eye Games, and the text adventure (interactive fiction) 1893: A World's Fair Mystery from Illuminated Lantern. You will also get the never before released The Sea Will Claim Everything by Jonas Kyratzes.

If you pay more than the average of less than $6US, you will also get the first game from Wadjet Eye Games, The Shivah, and the heavy-metal influenced zombie adventure from Walk Thru Walls Studios, The Metal Dead.

LucasArts News

Updated: Screw Ron and Tim; LucasArts is making stuff too, you know!

27 May, 2012, 21:32 | Posted by: Jason | Source: EGM | Comments: 7

Based on an invitation they extended to EGM, LucasArts will have at least one new game to show off at E3 this year. So what will it be? The perennially greenlit-and-then-cancelled Battlefront III? The aerial combat game implied by some job listings some time ago? Might we finally begin seeing some sort of video game shaped consequences of the "We hired Clint Hocking" and "We've licensed the Unreal 3 engine" announcements from like, well over a year ago?

I dunno, but even money says whatever it is will be unworthy of my time Star Wars-related. Not that it's the only thing you have to look forward to from LEC; as we told you a few weeks back, they're planning on issuing a re-release of the first two Knights of the Old Republic games sometime this year. And thank goodness, right? God knows there aren't oodles of less readily available games from their prestigious catalog that people would care to see back in circulation over a hidden gem like KOTOR.

Thanks to Threepwood4life for the heads up. Poor sap thinks people still read the forums!

JP Update: Gamezone is reporting that a 'first look' of this new Star Wars franchise will screen on GTTV on May 31, with gameplay footage to be shown on June 6th.
Developer News

Updated: LucasArts alumni reaches Kickstarter Funding goal for Space Combat Game

27 May, 2012, 21:26 | Posted by: jp-30 | Source: Kickstarter | Comments: 1
Garry M. Gaber, who worked on LucasArts Star Wars titles of varying critical acclaim (including Rebel Assault II, Shadows of the Empire, Jedi Knight, Force Commander and the Galactic Battlegrounds series) has launched a kickstarter campaign for a new Space Combat Simulator 'Starlight Express Inception' for PC and... Playstation Vita?

You know the deal, here's the Kickstarter page - $150,000 needed (~$40,000 at the time of writing).

Of special interest is this:

Additionally, for this game we are reaching out to the Wing Commander, X-wing vs. TIE and Galactic Battlegrounds modding communities to give them a chance to contribute to a commercial product.

So, not only a chance to fund, but also a chance for modders to work on the game.

Good luck, maybe this will also inspire Larry Holland, who is the person most associated with the Star Wars Space Combat Simulator legacy.


Edit: If you don't want to wade through the screeds of text on the Kickstarter page, Gaming Union have just posted this interview with Garry M. Gaber regarding the game.


Update: The game just squeezed over the funding goal, so we can expect a new space combat simulator to come out sometime next year(?).
Telltale Games News

Jurassic Park Finally Concluded on iPad

25 May, 2012, 21:17 | Posted by: Jennifer | Be the first to comment!
The iPad was the only platform to get Jurassic Park: The Game in Telltale's usual episodic format. Telltale was releasing the games monthly until episode three. Then, there was a long break. But, iPad users need fret no more, as, after a four month hiatus, Jurassic Park: The Game: Episode 4: The Survivors for iPad (iPad 2 or higher recommended) is now out and ready to be ordered at the iTunes store.
Double Fine News

Double Fine Productions and SEGA announce The Cave!

24 May, 2012, 15:29 | Posted by: Jason | Source: Grumpy Gamer | Comments: 10

Ron Gilbert's much-anticipated new game is The Cave, a puzzle platformer an adventure game coming to PC and consoles in early 2013. Check out the announcement trailer below:


Looks awesome! You can read some first-look previews by Rock, Paper Shotgun, Eurogamer, Kotaku, Giant Bomb, Ars Technica, Joystiq, PC World, Destructoid, and The Verge, who describe the game as Maniac Mansion meets The Lost Vikings.
Double Fine News

Epic Schafer Interview reveals Sequel in the Works

24 May, 2012, 09:04 | Posted by: jp-30 | Source: SF Weekly | Comments: 1
In an epic 5 page interview with Tim Schafer, it is revealed that Double fine are working on a sequel to their Microsoft Kinect title "Happy Action Theatre".

Of course, what passes for work inside Double Fine might resemble play at other companies. Schafer sidles up to a duo testing what looks like a computerized funhouse mirror. He wiggles from side to side, and the screen shows him rippling like a sine wave. He turns around, and his virtual body corkscrews.
They're building the sequel to Happy Action Theater, a "video toy" published by Microsoft this year. It uses Microsoft's Kinect controller, a camera that transforms body motion into videogame action. In a recent meeting, designers spent two hours brainstorming different outlandish sequences for the game, such as one where a fox plays bongo drums on a series of eggs, out of which hatches a miniature version of the player.


There's a lot more to the article of course, Halford vs. Osborne, Kickstarter, growing up, LucasArts... etc. Go read it or crawl back under your rock. Your choice.
Double Fine News

Ron's Double Fine game being published by SEGA?

23 May, 2012, 20:07 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 3

Hey, wanna see something exactly like that image from/regarding Ron's new game that we just posted? Look no further than this tweet from SEGA's Twitter page dated yesterday. This would certainly make it pretty clear that the game, which I'm assuming at this point is The Cave, will be published by SEGA for platforms unknown.

And lest we forget, Ron's been carrying on about something happening tomorrow, and as sure as ten dimes will buy a dollar it's gonna be this game's announcement. I wonder what genre it will turn out to be?

Telltale Games News

Tales of Monkey Island for iPhone recovers its monocle

23 May, 2012, 13:31 | Posted by: Jason | Source: Telltale's Blog | Comments: 3

Last week Telltale reported on the release of a visual upgrade for the iPhone version of Tales of Monkey Island. The update is available to those who own the "Retina" capable iPhone 4 and 4S models, and the difference is like Wally B. Feed with and without a lighthouse lens.

The upgrade is free to those who can make use of it, and there's apparently some sort of discount going on with the series at the App Store right now, so, you know, food for thought for your nonexistent people who have an iPhone, read this site and never played Tales of Monkey Island.

Miscellaneous news

The Journey Down Chapter One Is Available Now

20 May, 2012, 15:59 | Posted by: Jennifer | Be the first to comment!
The Journey Down Chapter One is the first part of a four part point-and click adventure game by Skygoblin (formed by the merger of the developer of the Nord casual MMO, SLX, and the indie dev team responsible for the freeware lo-res The Journey Down Chapter One, Skygoblin). It is an HD remake of a free low-resolution game, named The Journey Down: Over the Edge. The game has been getting a lot of pre-release buzz in our forums for it's art direction. Developer Skygoblin was "inspired by the cartoony style of Bill Tiller's COMI, as well as Peter Chan's Full Throttle and Grim Fandango", and you can definitely see the influence in the art direction.

The game has had a long development cycle, starting out on Adventure Game Studio, then switching to a custom engine called Gobby. But now, the wait is over, as The Journey Down has been released for PC, Mac, and Linux in downloadable form at Adventure Shop, Desura, and a whole lot of other places.

Double Fine News

Fourth character revealed!

20 May, 2012, 13:14 | Posted by: Zaarin | Comments: 1

Ron Gilbert has revealed a fourth character on his blog! Since we now have four pieces, we've tried to fit them together. As you can see below, three of them go next to each other, leaving the time traveller out in the cold.

Is Ron Gilbert working on some insane puzzle game? Earlier this month, several game sites (but not us) received a puzzle that when solved turned out to also be a tease for this mysterious game.

Adventure News

The Two Guys from Andromeda and Project Fedora enter Kickstarter

16 May, 2012, 18:55 | Posted by: Zaarin | Comments: 2

Since Mojo last looked at Kickstarter, Replay Games' drive to collect half a million dollars to remake the first Leisure Suit Larry game finished with over $150,00 in surplus. This week, Jane Jensen's Pinkerton Road kickstarter is nearing its end, having met its goal of $300,000.

The Two Guys from Andromeda (famous for the Space Quest series) have also decided to get on the bandwagon with their SpaceVenture kickstarter to see if they can get enough money to make another adventure game set in space. Last, Chris Jones and Aaron Conners' Project Fedora is firing up its campaign to collect $450,000 to make a sequel to the famous Tex Murphy adventure games.

Double Fine News

Psychonauts is #1

07 May, 2012, 21:27 | Posted by: Jennifer | Comments: 4
The prices of Double Fine's PC games are now at an incredibly low price ($9.99US in a bundle with Psychonauts, Costume Quest, and Stacking, $2.99US a piece for Psychonauts and Costume Quest, or $7.49US for Stacking) at Amazon. As a result, Psychonauts is currently #1 on Amazon's list of best selling video games, and Costume Quest is #4.

It's good to see Psychonauts finally at the top of the charts where it belongs (especially now that there is no external publisher sharing in any profit Psychonauts makes).

LucasArts News

Star Wars Rumors: New Game and Re-releases

07 May, 2012, 19:41 | Posted by: Jennifer | Be the first to comment!
There's some new Star Wars game rumors floating around. First of all, Siliconera noticed that Lucasfilm registered a trademark for Star Wars 1313, for use for video games. The fact that a game was registered by Lucasfilm rather than LucasArts isn't unusual. Lucasfilm also registered the trademark for The Force Unleashed in 2006. GameSpy suggests that the Star Wars 1313 may be a game about Boba Fett, because Boba Fett apparently used CT-1313 as an alias in a Star Wars novel.

The second rumor concerns re-releases rather than new games. Apparently a pre-order for a Knights of The Old Republic I & II bundle for PC has popped up all over at places like Newegg.com J&R Electronics, and Smart Game Shopper. The latter has the release scheduled as 6/27/2012, but considering the (lack of) reliability of release dates by retailers, I'd take that release date with a grain of salt.

Double Fine News

Double Fine chooses technology, release window for their adventure game

02 May, 2012, 23:36 | Posted by: Jason | Source: Virtual-Strategy Magazine | Comments: 1
Zipline Games issued a press release today announcing that Double Fine has selected their Moai platform to power their upcoming adventure game.

“We’ve chosen Moai as the technology platform for our new adventure game,” said Tim Schafer, CEO of Double Fine Productions. “Moai’s supposed to be awesome, but since I’m not smart enough to tell you all the reasons why, I’ll just turn it over to the Double Fine developers to explain.”

“We built the first demo of Double Fine Adventure in 2 days using Moai,” added Nathan Martz, Technical Director at Double Fine Productions, “Gameplay changes take seconds instead of minutes because you can do almost all your work in Lua. Then we can build both client and cloud features for the game in the same language.”

“We like to control every aspect of our games in order to bring Tim’s awesome, crazy ideas to life, and because Moai is open source we can change any line of code we need to,” Martz added. “Plus the fans asked for Double Fine Adventure on five different PC, tablet, and mobile phone platforms, and Moai supports them all with a single core codebase. It was the best choice for us.”

I guess SCUMM got rejected. The press release also indicates that the studio is aiming for a Spring 2013 release. Oh, and here's a video:

Star Wars News

"[LucasArts] effectively canned a game that was finished"

02 May, 2012, 23:27 | Posted by: Jason | Source: GamesIndustry International | Comments: 3

What game is being referred to here? I'm going to assume that middle finger means "just tell me" - it's Star Wars: Battlefront III.

Yes, the oft-cancelled sequel to the lucrative shooter franchise is back in the headlines yet again thanks to a juicy interview between GamesIndustry International and Steve Ellis, co-founder of Free Radical, that sheds a little more light on how the relationship ended, and apparently it wasn't pretty.

It turns out the game was nearly finished and the publisher-developer relationship didn't sour until the arrival of that destructive force that dooms even Star Wars projects, a management shift.

In fact, it was going so well that by the end of 2007 LucasArts asked Free Radical to work on another Battlefront game, according to Ellis. "We were still at that time probably a year out from completing and releasing the first game and they asked us to sign up for the sequel.

"That was a big deal for us because it meant putting all our eggs in one basket. It was a critical decision - do we want to bet on LucasArts? And we chose to because things were going as well as they ever had. It was a project that looked like it would probably be the most successful thing we had ever done and they were asking us to make the sequel to it too. It seemed like a no-brainer."

But at the beginning of 2008 there was a shift in focus at LucasArts, with president Jim Ward stepping down in February and the axe falling later in the year on more internal staff including Peter Hirschman.

"The really good relationship that we'd always had suddenly didn't exists anymore. They brought in new people to replace them and all of a sudden we were failing milestones. That's not to say there were no problems with the work we were doing because on a project that size inevitably there will be, there's always going to be grey areas were things can either pass or fail. And all of a sudden we were failing milestones, payments were being delayed and that kind of thing."

Ellis doesn't feel the pressure from LucasArts was justified and the company became reluctant to get involved in the high stakes marketing that a triple-A title demands.

"It was a change of direction for LucasArts as a company rather than for the games that we were working on. I think what had happened was the new management had been bought in to replace the old and given an impossible mandate. It was a financial decision basically and the only way they could achieve what they had been told to do was to can some games and get rid of a bunch of staff. So that's what they did but it was quite a long, drawn out process."

The whole sordid affair, as well as more insider tales from Free Radical's storied history, can be found in the full interview.

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