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Last night, before tossing and turning for a good three hours, I finally finished George R.R. Martin's "A Game of Thrones." I'd been nibbling my way through the book -- a 900-page tome -- since late May, so I was understandably thrilled to see its final page, as well as its wildly out-of-place ad for the "A Game of Thrones" collectible card game. But AGoT's only the beginning of a planned seven-part series that began in 1996. Needless to say, AGoT's sequel has been on shelves, Amazon, and wherever else books are sold since before my age had taken on a second digit, and because AGoT ended on a huge cliffhanger, I nabbed the second book from my local Borders with all the subtlety a frothing nerd could muster, clasping it in my hands with a grip that bystanders described as "air-tight."
However, if I'd voraciously devoured AGoT back in '96, I'm fairly sure my satisfied smile would've flipped upside down. The final chapter felt like a build to the climax, but then -- as though it was a badly planned rollercoaster -- the story just ended, leaving readers dangling for roughly two years. (Yeah, the bad kind of rollercoaster.)
Obviously, literature isn't the only medium that backhands its users this way. Games, too, have a habit of rolling out large, red, inappropriately timed stop signs just when things are getting good. Even worse, development cycles now pack double the staff and take twice as long to complete compared to only a few years ago. Looks like the wait between sequels will only grow more arduous before it tapers off.
So, what's the least satisfying game ending you've ever come across? How did you react? Did you pen an angry email? Boycott the sequel?
This installment of the Roundup features the successor to a top-notch game with an abysmal ending, a peek behind the scenes of a controversial game that's attempting to tell a titanic, cliffhanger-laden tale, and so much more. See the stunning conclusion after the break.
"First, our money - the pound or the euro - is very strong and because of that the turnover from those countries is heavier than they used to be," Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot explained during an interview with GI.biz. "So for Ubisoft turnover Europe is actually more important than the US now, and by more than 5 per cent. It's become a very strong market for us."
He also noted that casual gaming's simplistic wiles have persuaded many Europeans to pick up a controller, claiming that "this market has no limit in the growth it can have if we can make sure that the people that are coming in are staying."
Check out the link for the full interview.
Quick, think of someone other than Ken Levine who worked on Bioshock. Ok then, how about someone other than Will Wright who slaved away at Spore? Yeah, me neither. Gas Powered Games' Chris Taylor, however, wants you to be able to rattle off the names of his staff as though you were singing the Poke-rap.
"I have been very spoiled, and get more attention than I deserve," Taylor said. "So I like to see the team interacting more with the press, and see questions go from the press straight to the guys who create the AI, or [lead artist] Nate [Simpson], who's created this incredible look for the world, or Mike [Marr], who's now the lead designer on the game."
"If people in the press want to interview individuals, I love that. I think that's the best thing, to get the story from the people who are working on the specifics of the game, rather than being filtered through me and getting my version of it."
Chris Taylor, Nate Simpson, Arbok, Pikachu!
I know a few of you weren't too happy with Heavy Rain's debut trailer, so just try to humor Sony's David Reeves, please.
“A risk? I would rather say it’s an opportunity… If you listened to the keynote speech yesterday, David Reeves said this is the most important title for next year. I believe it’s an opportunity to expand the market, also.”
“It’s an opportunity to get people on board with traditional games,” he said. “Everybody likes stories, like characters, likes emotions, and it’s an interesting way to get people playing on PlayStation 3.”
But can "everyone" mash button combinations without glancing down at their controller? A huge barrier, that.
Is it just me, or is this little candid camera session pointless? A) These people have been working with Dyack for years, so of course they like him well enough, and B) if they planned on pulling out the ol' soap box and tearing into their boss, I doubt they'd do it in a public, name-displaying forum.
The headline does not lie. Written by former 1up-ers Dan Hsu and Crispin Boyer, this blog focuses on gaming journalism's less savory side that publishers and publications alike would probably rather you not know about. So very, very juicy.
One for each person who plays the game!