Monday, October 31

Horde Command Pack delayed

Update: It's out. Go download it!

Epic Games had this to announce today about the Horde Command Pack

We are sorry to have to report today that the scheduled release of the first DLC for “Gears of War 3”, the Horde Command Pack has been delayed. We experienced a technical issue late last week during some of our final testing, and were unable to resolve the problem today to ensure a timely release. No one is more disappointed than ourselves over this unexpected development. We are working as fast as we can to identify the issue and get the package out to all of our fans. We will get the content live the minute we have confirmed a fix and let everyone know that it is ready to go.

Stay tuned to and the various Gears twitter feeds (@GearsofWar3,@raczilla, @GearsViking, @theRealCliffyB, @HammerofWynn) to be sure that you are up to date on all of the latest news and info on Gears of War and the Horde Command Pack.

It would seem the Raam DLC is unaffected.

Friday, October 28

Plasma Pistol made from sticks and paper

A nice piece of Halo craft work - this plasma pistol was made from icecream sticks and tissue paper.

As found on HBO.

5 Reasons why Multiplayer in ME3 is a good idea

Game Informer has 5 Reasons why Multiplayer in Mass Effect 3  is a good idea....

1) You Don’t Have To Play Co-Op
The conclusion of Commander Shepard’s tale is still a single-player affair. The co-op mode is a separate thing, and Mass Effect 3’s best ending can be obtained entirely within the confines of the campaign. To me, this is the most important factor. By not forcing players to dabble in multiplayer, EA and BioWare have ensured that those seeking a “classic” Mass Effect experience don’t feel betrayed or alienated. At the same time, the option is there for those who are interested.

2) Gameplay Doesn’t Suffer
The core combat mechanics in co-op haven’t been changed drastically to accommodate the new mode. You still choose from among the six major classes (soldier, adept, engineer, vanguard, sentinel, and infiltrator), and level up as you gain experience. The biggest difference is that you aren’t completing a scripted mission; you’re fighting off waves of enemies. The gunplay involves squad tactics, taking cover, and using your class powers to their fullest. As an adept, I threw a singularity into a crowd of advancing enemies, and as they twirled in mid-air, my soldier teammate gunned them down. It feels exactly like Mass Effect should – but it adds a fun element of cooperation.

3) The Depth Is There
The goal in co-op mode isn’t just to survive waves of bad guys until you are eventually overpowered. Each mission has a finite number of waves, and if you make it all the way through, you get a nice experience bonus. But even if you fail, you retain the XP you gained. That XP is the core of my favorite part of ME3’s multiplayer: the leveling. Each class has a full set of skills like you’d see in the single-player campaign, including different branches for each power. As your character gains levels, you earn more skill points to apply to your abilities, like increasing health, learning new biotic powers, or decreasing cooldown times. All of these upgrades carry over from match to match, and the persistence gives you the satisfying sense of building a powerhouse from the ground up.

4) Co-op Feeds Into Shepard’s War
Though you aren’t forced to play multiplayer, the time you spend in co-op isn’t completely isolated from the main game. The awesome multiplayer characters you take into battle can appear in the single-player campaign as war assets for Shepard to dispatch. EA is calling this the “Galaxy at War” system, where the Reaper threat is reaching critical levels in multiple areas of the galaxy. Shepard can’t be everywhere at once, and multiplayer characters join the other power groups (like the Salarian Special Forces) that are available as war assets – the soldiers that help keep things under control long enough for Shepard to finish the fight.

5) Play As Other Races
Shepard works alongside most of the major races in the galaxy, but players never control any of the other species in the single-player campaign. Co-op gives you the opportunity to step into some alien shoes. In addition to humans, players can choose to be a Salarian, Krogan, Turian, Asari, or Drell character. All of my hands-on time was spent playing as a human, but I’m looking forward to checking out what the other species offer. While largely a cosmetic choice, each race will have some sort of unique capability, but BioWare isn’t giving out precise details yet. Even without any specifics, I expect to see a lot of Krogans storming around in co-op.

Thursday, October 27

Halo 4 designers talk Halo 4

Here's a sweet video from Game Informer which is an interview with 343 Industries' studio creative director Josh Holmes and Halo 4 executive producer Kiki Wolfkill as they share a few internally approved thoughts on the development of the new Halo trilogy and what may be on the gaming horizon.

It's a 20 odd minute interview - here's a couple of notes from it:

A new trilogy means there can be new freedoms in Halo 4's plot but it has to be grounded in the original trilogy's plot foundations.

Music- there will be new themes (and I guess motifs) to represent the new journey. I'm sure there will be the odd nod to the O'Donnell riffs but it sounds like it's gonna be all new.

Regarding the story of the Master Chief - Halo 4 is a deliberate attempt to show a more of the man - The issue the game designers face is to make it so the player always feel like they are playing the Chief they always know and not to detract from the prior experience (and I presume for first timers as well) of the Halo games. The solution is to give 'Le Chief 117' some extremely tough choices to make and the solutions will not be obvious. No indication of course if the actual player makes the choices for the Chief or if it's simply plot driven.

The Halo 4 game engine - is a different engine from Halo: Anniversary (like dur!) but is based on past halo tech that's been optimised into something new and thus is effectively completely internal tech.

The interviewer did his best to get some real details from Wolfkill and Holmes but they were both up to the task and indeed expressed their frustration that they could not share any real new Halo 4 news.

The gray scale framed pictures in the back ground look interesting..... did NE 1 glean any details?

Monday, October 24

Terminals DO NOT change location in Halo

There had been some whispers that the location on the Terminals in the Halo Anniversary edition of the game would move dependant on the degree of difficulty the game was set at.

Frankie (the dude who draws Mister Chief) left a note on the interwebs to clarify:

"This used to be true, but was changed during test. Now they are all found in the same location, regardless of difficulty. In part so that players can switch difficulty in saved games, but there were other, more tedious reasons. The first one is very simple to find. They get progressively harder, however."

So there you have it. 

Sunday, October 23

A collection of Frankie's Mister Chiefs

Mister Chief

If you've heard of Halo in recent times, you may have heard a guy called Frank O'Conner talking - a former Bungie player, he's now the Big Cheese at 343 Industries and he's charged with running the entire Halo franchise. So if he fucks up, Bill Gates can fire him. 

When Frankie (as he's known to fans) has some time to spare he likes to dabble in a bit of art and his muse is the Mister Chief. You'll find all sorts of Mister Chiefs out there - and they've developed an al most cult like status within the Halo community - so much so that Frankie can draw one and auction it off for charity.....

You wan't like me when I'm Angry Chief
Gold Mister Chief (drawn to celebrate Halo Anniversary).
The one when Frankie left Bungie

“Dear Bungie Fans,
It’s not you, it’s me.
In many ways, you’re too good for me. You can find someone better. Maybe a little hairy dude. Maybe a Hungarian Unicyclist. I just know that I don’t deserve you, and that this is just as hard for me as it is for you.
Yours truly,

Ichabod Chief, By Smurf Diggler

Oonsk and Mister Chief
Frankie's latest was an effort for the Haitian Earthquake relief fund which was auctioned off. It featured Mister Chief and Oonsk:

Frankie's cottage industry in churning out Mister Chiefs has created a little bit of fan love - here's some efforts by Halo community members who have shared their own bit of Mister Chief love.

Blizz Con Cos Play 2011 Pictures

Star Craft 
Blizz Con Cos Play 2011 Pictures

If you thought the NY Comic Con had some epic cosplay, check out the overload of cos play wonders that could be found at the 2011 Blizz Con. Fans came out to play dressed as World of Warcraft for miles - there was a pretty sweet Starcraft character running round and a sweet as Death Wing.

No idea what or who this is but it's awesome
Reason number one hundred to love cosplay

Cute snail....

Death Wing

Sexy WoW Lady

Elf WoW

Space Marine

Star Craft Cosplay

What do you seek friend?

Wow Ladies

More WoW

NY Comic Con Cosplay 2011

New York Comic Con Cosplay 2011

Here's some cos play pictures from Kotaku that feature some sweet costumes of the usual mix of super heroes, comic villans and TV characters.

Battlestar Stars?
Bumblebee and friend
Night Wing v Night Wing

Who else is going to bring you a broken arrow?

Why is my hand so big?

You won't see it coming

Any one call for a plumber?

The Rockteer enjoys some New York Comic Con

That's some sexy Mortal Combat cosplay - love the photo bombing joker

Mrs Poison Ivy and I think Ms Harley Quinn

Spidey senses on!

Superman and I guess Lois

Green goodness (who is she?)

Dead Space cosplay action!

Saturday, October 22

Play as Raam in new Gears DLC

Gears of War 3 RAAM’s Shadow will be available for download for you Xbox on  Dec. 13

Here's the official press release on RAAM's Shadow from Epic Games:

Starring a cast of characters both new and eerily familiar to the series, “RAAM’s Shadow” will deliver more than three hours of new campaign gameplay set in a storyline that precedes the events of the first “Gears of War,” as well as six new multiplayer characters, the Chocolate Weapon Skin Set and an additional 250 Gamerscore. “RAAM’s Shadow” will launch Dec. 13 for 1,200 Microsoft Points on Xbox LIVE Marketplace, marking the second major game add-on for this year’s critically-acclaimed blockbuster, “Gears of War 3.”

“RAAM’s Shadow” drops players into the events of Sera post-Emergence Day, as Zeta Squad is enlisted to evacuate Ilima City and protect the citizens against a Locust Kryll storm. Taking on the infamous Locust leader from “Gears 1,” General RAAM, Zeta is led by Michael Barrick (from “Gears of War” comics fame) and comprised of familiar faces such as Lt. Minh Young Kim (“Gears 1”) and Tai Kaliso (“Gears 2”), and also includes a new female comrade, Alicia Valera.

In addition to fighting as a new squad of Gears, players will step into the boots of RAAM himself, and for the first time storm the human stronghold from the perspective of one of the series’ most legendary bosses.

“RAAM’s imposing size and strength, along with his Kryll shield, make him one of the most powerful and daunting foes in the ‘Gears’ universe,” said Cliff Bleszinski. “We think fans are going to have a blast unleashing hell upon the poor humans for the first time in a campaign setting.”

With the announcement of “RAAM’s Shadow” and in anticipation of the launch of the “Horde Command Pack” on Nov. 1, featuring new maps, characters, weapon skins, Horde fortification upgrades and Achievements, there’s never been a better time to purchase the “Gears of War 3” Season Pass for 2400 Microsoft Points, entitling you to the first four game add-ons for discount of more than 30 percent!