We’re guessing the PC versions of Street Fighter IV and Bionic Commando haven’t sold too shabbily, because – in stark contrast to almost every other publisher on the planet – Capcom’s going ahead withmultiple PC-oriented projects. That’s right, console gamers! You can suck it, because… oh, the games are going to be ported to consoles too? Phooey. Ah well, beggars can’t be choosers.
“We do have a couple of products in development which are PC-lead, that are not announced yet,” Capcom’s Christian Svensson said. “That doesn’t mean that that content isn’t also going to show up on console, because it will.”
“But the pedigree of the team and the primary focus of the design is around the PC, and the largest forecast is on PC for at least one of these projects.”
Oh sure, Capcom, you could scare up another Resident Evil, or maybe a new franchise that’s more PC for the PC; those things would make sense. But, in our beggarly, chooserly opinion, please, please, please release a new Power Stone.
We love the PC as much as more than anyone ever, but even we’ll admit that consoles play host to some top-notch games. Two of our recent favorites? Resident Evil 5 and Red Faction: Guerrilla. However, for those of you who haven’t started roaming the street corners, searching for some console lovin’, there’s still hope. Both games are making their PC debuts this September.
First up, Resident Evil 5’s shambling our way on September 14, with support Nvidia’s 3D Vision hardware. You’ll also have access to new costumes, and an upgraded version of the game’s Mercenaries mode.
Red Faction, meanwhile, is computerizing the revolution on September 15. Unlike its undead-obliterating cousin, Red Faction’s not really bringing anything new to the PC. Who cares, though? It’s a game that allows and encourages the systematic destruction of a small country’s worth of buildings. You’ll buy it, and you will never regret anything ever again.
So, what are your purchasing plans? Resident Evil, Red Faction, both, or neither?
For Street Fighter IV on the PC, phase one of the “Are we allowed to get excited yet?” cycle is complete. After a quick trip through the rumor mill, Capcom has officially confirmed the port. Now, if it can just replicate that sterling success with the other phases – the most pressing of which places an “Is it plagued by crippling bugs?” in the Q column – then we’re golden. Especially since patient PC players can lord a few bonus features over the heads of their console rivals.
Those features include, most notably, expanded visual options, with new artistic effects like sumi-e ink (think SFIV’s rad announcement trailer) and watercolor shaders joining the typical PC suite of graphical bells and whistles. Also putting a bit more punch behind SFIV’s PC edition is Games For Windows Live support, which brings with it in-game messaging, friends lists, voice chat, and achievements.
Unfortunately, Xbox 360 combatants won’t be able to join PC pugilists in the ring, as cross-platform play has been ruled out by Capcom’s Christian Svensson. It’s just as well, though; punching console fanboys is far more satisfying in real life anyway.
Game’s out this summer. Check out the first link for a bunch of screenshots comparing the game’s new visual effects.
You hear that, GameStop? Capcom thinks you’re all washed up. Maybe it’s time to let the younger, prettier, and – most of all – immaterial new generation start helping you across the street, because your time’s running short. In an interview with Rock Paper Shotgun, Capcom VP of strategic planning Christian Svensson explained why.
“Absolutely. No question in my mind. Digital distribution on PC ties directly into our strategy," Svensson replied when asked whether or not digital beats retail. “We will probably do as much digital selling as retail in the current climate,” he later added.
“To that end, on the PC side, I’ve spent the past year building up a digital distribution channel that has about twenty different partners. We’re ready on the console side, and we were the first Japanese publisher to do anything on Steam.”
Just in time, too. Our collection of game manuals was starting to get a little out of hand.
Street Fighter IV may claim to have lived out its early days on the street, but that’s a damn lie. In reality, the current king of fighters spent less of its time scrounging together street cred and more picking up virtual credits in the backs of arcades ploughed flat by herds of rail-thin DDR players.
However, a quick look at the wreckin’ machine’s boxy guts reveals a shocking secret: It’s a PC. Runs Windows and everything. So why delay the game’s PC punch-out until after consoles take it for a ride?
"Well the answer is the game's not done," Capcom VP Christian Svensson said after calling accusations of piracy-avoidance “completely absurd.” "So, to put things into perspective, the Street Fighter IV team is working on two things right now. They're finishing the PC SKU, and people are like, well the arcade was the PC, how hard can it be? Well we had all of these additions for the console version in terms of content that didn't exist on the PC. All of that needs to be rolled back in.”
“All of that takes time. The testing on PC in particular is a very, very time consuming process. Testing and optimisation versus obviously when we're working on console or an arcade board for that matter, it has a known configuration that we can optimise for out of the gate," he explained.
“Your next question to me is probably, well why don't you just hold the console versions until the PC is done? The answer is the unfortunate financial realities of making our numbers within certain financial years or quarters drives when we have to actually get some stuff out of the door.”
“The other part of this is while the PC is an important part of our business today, the forecast does not justify holding back the lion share of the revenues that comes from consoles to make it happen.”
Console gamers have been melting faces and bashing skulls under mountains of plastic peripherals for years, but what about those of the PC persuasion? Where are our seemingly Skittle-riddled, Fischer Price-friendly hunks of electronic bliss?
They’re in the future. Like jetpacks.
First up, Street Fighter IV – apparently afraid of being associated with this week’s feature flop – is laying low until summer. Well, probably. Capcom vice president, business development and strategic planning, Christian Svensson’s exact words were: "Let's say summer."
The game will likely come bundled with some “sticks and pads” – if you catch Svensson’s meaning. (We assume he means arcade sticks, though “Mad Catz” were also mentioned. This is why videogames confuse old people.)
In other, slightly vaguer peripheral-related news, Intel basically confirmed the existence of Guitar Hero World Tour on the PC. The King Kong of processors passed along a press release that acknowledged the game, and then just sort of stopped, as though the employee writing it finally reached the end of his/her Quake Live queue and abandoned their work to--
We’re not going to lie; relations with our Xbox 360 have been strained as of late. Its once-alluring vanilla sheen has faded to a dull gray. At one time effortlessly slim and sleek, its hard drive has fallen into a self-destructive cycle of binge downloading and purging. The passive-aggressive blog posts aren’t helping. And now, as though a sign from the heavens to ease our conflicted minds, Resident Evil 5 is officially infecting PCs the world over. Or, at the very least, in Poland.
"We know for sure that a PC version RE5 will be released. We don't know when exactly but we expect that it will arrive to shops in second half 2009,” said Jerzy Cichocki of CD Projeckt, the company that publishes Capcom titles in Poland.
However, the Xbox 360 isn’t ready to relinquish its control on our Gamerscores (and consequently, our hearts) just yet. Fable II’s radioactive crumb trail, sadly, has no intention of illuminating a path to the PC – at least, not in the near future.
"We're not working on a PC version of Fable II... If this changes we'll make sure you know about it on our website(s),” said Lionhead community head “Woody” after rumors of a PC port surfaced.
Resident Evil 4's PC port notwithstanding, the Resident Evil series of survival-horror games is among the more enjoyable reasons to wet yourself. Thus, the possibility that the hide-and-go-aiiiieeee series' latest entry might be making its way over to our platform of choice inspires both excitement and trepidation.
Sadly, at this point, RE5's PC release is unconfirmed. After a PC version appeared alongside its console counterparts on a recent Capcom release list, Big Download attempted to get ahold of Capcom to verify the port's existence. In response, a Capcom rep waved the site away, merely saying that no official announcements have been made. Not a "yes," but certainly not a "no."
Our guess? It's coming. Capcom has been lavishing the PC with ports as of late, so we don't see why it wouldn't do the same for one of its biggest titles. At any rate, the game is slated to arrive on March 13. Common sense says that we'll at least hear something about the PC's dose of the T-virus before then.
As sunlight glinted off a grenade reaching the zenith of its soldier-bound arc, I could only wonder what my hapless opponent was thinking. See, the man was rooted -- as though entangled in nearby bushes -- to his position. There had to be a reason. Maybe he was a mathematician without peer; he'd done the calculations and no matter how fast he ran, he'd soon be engulfed by my ordinance's cantaloupe-colored splash. Or maybe his path in life had been bordered by four leaf clovers -- his luck so great, he was certain the grenade would be a dud. Maybe he just couldn't take life anymore. But then all of that ceased to matter.
As I continued my stroll through the brightly colored playground of destruction, I noticed that other soldiers were, all told, pretty okay with Havok-powered, life-halting flights.
Yeah, my enemies were walking vegetables. The only damage I accrued was a sinking sense of utter disappointment. Mercenaries 2, after its top-notch predecessor, labored development cycle, and catchy commercial jingle, was a big, fat letdown.
So, have you ever surfed a game's hype wave, only to reach a completely non-descript shore? What's your biggest gaming letdown? What game had you brimming with excitement, but only left you shuddering with rage? (And don't say Daikatana, because that's a cop-out.)
Today's Roundup is reporting live from outside a dark, ominous cloud that's recently enveloped one of the decade's biggest upcoming games. Additionally, you'll find stories about the MMO market's failings, a dev whose unmentionables you'll want to boot, and the Xbox 360's upper limits. All that and more after the break.
If not for the fact that I was able to actually make physical contact with David Hayter at this year's Capcom E3 press conference, it would've been a total letdown. The whole thing was just a giant shill for Capcom's Lost Planet film, and its reception was nearly as icy cold as the movie/game's setting. But in between cracking big, corporate grins and repeatedly uttering the Japanese equivalent of "So awesome," the Capcom big-wigs dropped a tiny bomb. See, as it turns out, Lost Planet had popped from Capcom's collective womb with a ticket to Hollywood in hand. The game was born to be a film.
As we've seen with movies like Doom and Resident Evil, and games like Guitar Hero, media convergence is inevitable. United we stand; divided, we make less money. And that just won't do. However, whereas other instances of convergence have taken two (or more) disparate media forms and none-too-subtly mashed them together -- casualties be damned -- Lost Planet, if all goes according to plan, will straddle the line between games and film. Instead of removing what makes the game special -- effectively neutering it with a rusty knife -- Lost Planet: The Movie has the potential to usher in an era of game-themed movies not unlike what we're seeing with comic books right now.
But is that what we want? Last I checked, comic book fans were a tiny niche, nearly fit for a somber, "Don't let these beautiful creatures die" commercial from the World Wildlife Fund. Yeah, I'm not sure comics are the greatest role model. Plus, do we really want cherished characters having their in-game appearances altered just so they can more aptly fit their roles as movie characters (See Nick Fury, among others)?*
So, are you ready for some top-notch game-to-movie conversions, or would you rather our hobby stick to the small screen, interactive and proud?
Today's Roundup features a big-name title that's already being preened for stardom, and wouldn't you know it, Electronic Arts is the, er, preener. Inside, you'll also find Rockstar decrying the hardcore/casual divide, a top-15 list of Olympic proportions, and massive success from a WoW competitor. Hurdle past the break for more.