games en Destiny Darts to $325 Million in Five Days, Online Players Log 100 Million <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/destiny.jpg" alt="Destiny" title="Destiny" width="228" height="129" style="float: right;" />Activision Blizzard has another lucrative franchise on its hands</h3> <p>Though some early reviews have criticized <em>Destiny</em> for its repetitive game play and vague storyline, it's still raking in a lot of money for publisher Activision Blizzard. Citing Chart-Track figures, Activision Blizzard says <strong><em>Destiny</em> has sold through more than $325 million worldwide in its first five days</strong>, which underscores that it's the best selling new video game franchise launch of all time.</p> <p>Developer Bungie claims <em>Destiny</em> players have logged over 100 million hours of online play through the first week and participated in 137 million activities. In addition, <em>Destiny</em> has won over 180 awards and nominations.</p> <p>"<em>Destiny </em>fans played more than 100 million hours of the game in the first week. That's on par with the engagement levels of our most popular Call of Duty games, which obviously is an industry leader," <a href="" target="_blank">said Eric Hirshberg</a>, CEO, Activision Publishing. "Millions of gamers are having a great time playing <em>Destiny </em>and can't put down their controllers. And this is just the beginning. Destiny is a platform that will grow and evolve and we will continue to work closely with our partners at Bungie to bring a long line of new experiences and content to life in the game."</p> <p><em>Destiny</em> became one of the most highly anticipated titles of the year as gamers were eager to see what the developers of <em>Halo</em>, another hugely popular franchise, would come up with.</p> <p>Last week, Activision announced that it had shipped $500 million worth of copies to retail. Having now grossed $325 million from those sales, the sales estimate sits at over 5 million copies in circulation so far. Microsoft undoubtedly helped put copies into the hands of gamers when it ran a promotion from September 7 to 13 in which anyone who purchased a new Xbox One console from a participating retailer, including the Madden NFL 15 and Forza bundles, would be eligible for a free game priced $59.99 or less.</p> <p>As of right now, there aren't any plans to port <em>Destiny</em> over to PC, though Activision Publishing CEO Erik Hirshberg left the door open back at E3 when he said it's "something we're talking about and looking at very carefully."</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> activision blizzard destiny games News Wed, 17 Sep 2014 17:29:08 +0000 Paul Lilly 28556 at Grand Theft Auto V Headed to PC January 27, 2015 with Prettier Graphics and New Weapons <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/gta_v_pc.jpg" alt="Grand Theft Auto V" title="Grand Theft Auto V" width="228" height="128" style="float: right;" />Yes, this release date is real</h3> <p>With all due respect to the PC gamers who, after waiting so long for Grand Theft Auto V to be ported to Windows with nary a peep from Rockstar Games, have understandably lost interest, this is a big day. At long last, <strong>Rockstar has finally picked a release date for GTA V on PC -- January 27, 2015</strong> -- and I couldn't be more excited. Why? Partially because I've played the game with delight on the Xbox 360 and was totally drawn in, and also because I'm anxious to see the improved graphics and new features.</p> <p>What about the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One? Rockstar's obvious preference for consoles has GTA V arriving on the PS4 and Xbox One on November 18, 2014, more than two months ahead of the PC launch. Whatever, let's not act surprised that the PC is last line -- a familiar place with Rockstar.</p> <p>As to the game, all three platforms will see a "range of major visual and technical upgrades" that will make Los Santos and Blaine County prettier and more immersive than they've ever been. You can expect increased draw distances, a higher resolution, and a handful of new additions such as new weapons, vehicles, and activities, more wildlife, denser traffic, a new foliage system, enhanced damage and weather effects, and more.</p> <p>Those who <a href="" target="_blank">pre-order</a> will receive $1,000,000 of in-game currency, half of which you can spend in GTA V and the other half allocated to GTA Online. If you've already been playing GTA Online, you'll be able to transfer your character and progression to PC (or PS4 or Xbox One).</p> <p>There's no arguing it's been a long wait, and with still four months to go, Rockstar is undoubtedly alienating some PC gamers. To tide you over -- assuming you're still interested -- check out the new trailer below (taken from a PS4) and a bunch of <a href="" target="_blank">new screenshots</a> on Rockstar's website.</p> <p><iframe src="" width="620" height="350" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> games Grand Theft Auto V gta v rockstar games Software News Fri, 12 Sep 2014 15:54:19 +0000 Paul Lilly 28526 at NPD Group Survey Finds Half of PC Gamers Only Buys Games on Sale <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/sale.jpg" alt="Sale" title="Sale" width="228" height="152" style="float: right;" />Survey says half of all PC gamers wait for sales</h3> <p>If you're a PC gamer, there's a good chance your Steam library is filled with titles that you purchased at a discount but have yet to play. It's hard to pass up those sale prices, especially when they come so frequently, but are we hurting the industry by turning our collective noses up at titles when they're full price? <strong>According to NPD Group, half all PC gamers wait for a sale before picking up a game</strong>.</p> <p>NPD Group puts the onus on retailers and publishers to manage the expectations of a growing number of PC gamers who are simply unwilling to pay full price.</p> <p>"Consumers' expectations may be the greatest barrier to maximizing spending in the PC gaming space," <a href="" target="_blank">said Liam Callahan</a>, industry analyst, The NPD Group. "Since half of PC gamers who play digital and/or physical games on the computer are expecting there to always be a sale right around the corner, publishers and retailers alike need to better manage these expectations."</p> <p>The above finding came about from a report title "Understanding PC Gaming 2014," which is based on a June survey of 6,225 people in the U.S. age 9 and older. It was found that 46 percent of PC gamers bought a digital title within the last year, and of those who download games, they're "far less likely" to pull price than the ones who buy physical copies.</p> <p>One thing not mentioned, however, is how many additional dollars are spent as a direct result of these sales. Getting back to the Steam library filled with unplayed games, such a thing would suggest that gamers are buying titles faster than they have time to pay them, and that's not something most people are likely to do when a title is full price.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> games NPD Group Software News Wed, 10 Sep 2014 19:41:52 +0000 Paul Lilly 28513 at Watch Today's Teenagers Experience the Original Nintendo (NES) for the First Time <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/teen_nintendo.jpg" alt="Teen NES" title="Teen NES" width="228" height="164" style="float: right;" />Caution: Watching this video will make you feel old</h3> <p>We don't know whether to laugh or cry at the collective reactions of a group of a teenagers who were presented an original Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) to play with, so we did a little of both. <strong>The Fine Brothers, producers of the "Kids React to..." web series, posted a 9-minute video titled "Teens React To Nintendo (NES)"</strong> in which they group of teens first take guesses as to what the contraption is.</p> <p>Several recognized it as an NES, others did not, with one of the teens asking if it's a projector. Another said it looked like a brick. They then had to figure out how to get it working and were taught the age-old technique of blowing into a cartridge when it would fail to load.</p> <p>"This controller sucks, this is the least comfortable controller ever," one of the teens proclaims after losing a life in Super Mario Bros. Another teen disagreed and said she likes that there's just two buttons "because I get really confused with the big controllers with A, B, X, Y."</p> <p>Check it out below:</p> <p><iframe src="//" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> console games Hardware NES nintendo News Tue, 09 Sep 2014 18:15:17 +0000 Paul Lilly 28508 at GOG Turns 6 Years Old, Celebrates with Deeply Discounted Games <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/gog_sale.jpg" alt=" Sale" title=" Sale" width="228" height="166" style="float: right;" />They grow up so fast, don't they?</h3> <p>Six years is a damn good run in technology, so it's no small feat that <strong><em></em> is celebrating its 6th birthday</strong>. The site formerly known as Good Old Games is not only notable for its six-year run, but also for proving during that time there can be a successful business model based on selling digital content free of Digital Rights Management (DRM) restrictions. That wasn't such a popular notion in 2008.</p> <p>"It was 2008 when we've launched our service to the public, offering a modest collection of golden classics that every PC gamer would instantly recognize, in other words: the Interplay catalog. During the first year in business (September 2008 - September 2009) we've released a nice number of exciting titles and you've reacted to them accordingly," <em></em> stated in a <a href="" target="_blank">blog post</a>.</p> <p>To celebrate the occasion, each day <em></em> will be discounting some of the games it released in any given year of its existence by up to 80 percent. <a href="" target="_blank">Today's list</a> contains two dozen titles, some of which include Far Cry ($2.99), Postal 2 ($1.99), Unreal Gold ($2.49), Unreal Tournament 2004 ECE ($2.49), and Duke Nukem 3D: Atomic Edition ($1.99), to name just a sampling.</p> <p>The deals included in today's batch will be available until September 9 at 9:59AM GMT (2:59AM PDT).</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> games sale Software News Mon, 08 Sep 2014 19:23:41 +0000 Paul Lilly 28496 at Electronic Arts Chief Talks Being Voted Worst Company in U.S., Game Delays, and Other Topics <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/ea_sign.jpg" alt="EA Sign" title="EA Sign" width="228" height="163" style="float: right;" />EA chief doesn't envision a third Worst Company in U.S. designation</h3> <p>There would be something terribly wrong with <strong>Electronics Arts' Chief Executive Officer Andrew Wilson</strong> if he wanted his company to be voted the worst company in America for a third time by readers of the Consumerist blog. Being voted as such twice in the last three years -- in 2012 and 2013 -- is enough, though we're willing to excuse Wilson for stating the obvious, because that's not the point.</p> <p>Having replaced John Riccitiello as CEO of EA a year ago this month, Wilson inherited a company that had seen six consecutive years of declining revenue as it spent big money acquiring entities in its pursuit of being a major player in the casual gaming space. EA's reputation was arguably at an all-time low among gamers, and it appeared that EA might 'win' the anti-award of worst company several more times if something didn't change.</p> <p>Wilson had a vision for the company, but he stumbled out of the gate with a botch Battlefield 4 launch plagued by server issues. It also served as a learning point -- these days, Wilson isn't afraid to delay a launch when necessary. Gamers hate delays, but they arguably hate buggy software even more.</p> <p>"We decided that we couldn’t get an innovative Need For Speed title out this year so for the first time in 17 years we’re not launching one, we’re giving the team extra time," <a href="" target="_blank">Wilson told <em>The Guardian</em></a>. "We moved Titanfall on Xbox One out of our fiscal year; we moved Dragon Age, we moved Hardline. These were difficult decisions. The business of what we do, as measured by the stock price and fiscal returns, has grown - to me that’s reassurance that we’re doing the right thing."</p> <p>Even with lessons learned, it's not always smooth sailing these days. There's also the lingering perception of EA as a company that buys and kills off good franchises, as well as releases buggy games while cashing in on DLC. Wilson's strategy is to deliver "amazing games" and "commit to engaging with gamers" when they think they've been wronged.</p> <p>As for being voted worst company again, Wilson's wish is simple: "I hope we never appear on that list again, I truly do. But I expect that, as we push the boundaries of entertainment, we will get feedback from time to time that people want us to do different things. That’s okay. That’s the cool thing about our industry."</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> andrew wilson EA Electronic Arts games Software News Mon, 08 Sep 2014 18:44:12 +0000 Paul Lilly 28495 at Nvidia Gets Ready for GAME24, First Ever 24-Hour PC Gaming Celebration <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nvidia_female_gamer.jpg" alt="Nvidia Female Gamer" title="Nvidia Female Gamer" width="228" height="168" style="float: right;" />It's about time we celebrated how awesome PC gaming is!</h3> <p>We love video games. Many of you reading this also love video games. And if you're a fan of <em>Maximum PC</em>, chances are you prefer gaming on a PC. It is, after all, the superior platform for gaming -- we love our console gaming brethren, but they'll never convince us otherwise -- so why not celebrate this hobby of ours? That's exactly what <strong>Nvidia</strong> plans to do -- the GPU maker <strong>just sent us details about GAME24, the first ever global PC gaming celebration</strong>.</p> <p>"The goal of this event is simple – to celebrate this thing we all love called PC gaming. GAME24 is a combination of many local events around the world, and it will all be broadcast live on the internet," Nvidia says.</p> <p>GAME24 will commence on September 18th at 6PM PST and last for 24 hours. Events will take place in Chicago, Los Angeles, Mission Viejo, London, Indianapolis, Shanghai, and Stockholm, along with virtual stage around the world. If you can't make it to one of the venues, you catch the broadcast on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p> <p>You'll be able to interact with the livestream at home and win prices, share gaming experiences, and more. And while this hasn't been confirmed, we've heard rumors that Nvidia might show off a new GPU during the 24-hour celebration.</p> <p>More details will be available on <a href="" target="_blank">Nvidia's blog</a> later today. In the meantime, you can <a href="" target="_blank">register for the livestream</a> or one of the physical locations.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> game24 games nvidia News Tue, 02 Sep 2014 17:20:40 +0000 Paul Lilly 28464 at Grand Theft Auto V is (Probably) Still Headed to PC <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/gtav_3.jpg" alt="GTA V" title="GTA V" width="228" height="128" style="float: right;" />Rumors of GTA V's cancellation on PC have been greatly exaggerated (or so we hope)</h3> <p>Given how long Rockstar Games has been dragging its feet in porting Grand Theft Auto V over to PC, it would have been easy to believe the rumor that it's been cancelled, shelved, axed, dismissed with prejudice, etc. However, don't you believe it. Not only was the rumor a bit dubious to begin with, but <strong>Rockstar put most doubt to rest by reiterating that it still plans to bring GTA V to PC</strong>.</p> <p>Let's backtrack a second. As our sister site <a href="" target="_blank"><em>PCGamer</em> explains it</a>, the rumor originated from <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Fox Weekly</em></a>, which brought attention to the fact that the chairman of marketing firm Rantic was concerned about GTA V's release to PC because it's supposedly something Rockstar never wanted to do, but felt "forced" due to public demand. It's worth mentioning that Rantic was founded by one of the marketing directors for Rockstar North, hence why some people viewed the information as credible.</p> <p>Going straight to the source, a user posted a question on Rockstar's support forum asking if the rumors pointing to a "delay" are true.</p> <p>"I'm also looking forward to the PC release, however this release date has not changed," a support rep answered. "Please see our support article, 'Grand Theft Auto V Release Date on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC' for the most recent information on this topic."</p> <p>Here's the thing -- support reps aren't always privy to decisions made by upper management, so the safest bet in these situations is to toe the company line with a canned response. That's what the user got, along with a <a href="" target="_blank">dated link</a> (June) that indicates a Fall release to PC (as well as PS4 and Xbox One).</p> <p>That said, the original rumor wasn't all that strong to begin with, so we're mostly comfortable in viewing this as confirmation that Rockstar's plans haven't changed. Summer just ended, after all, so there's plenty of time to make good on that promise.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> games Grand Theft Auto V gtav pc rockstar games Software News Tue, 02 Sep 2014 14:40:31 +0000 Paul Lilly 28461 at Study Shows Near Equal Split Between Female and Male Gamers <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/girl_gamer_0.jpg" alt="Girl Gamer" title="Girl Gamer" width="228" height="150" style="float: right;" />Fun facts about the video game industry</h3> <p><strong>The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) released a report titled "Essential Facts About the Computer and Video game Industry"</strong> that's filled with sales, demographic, and usage data. According to the report, 59 percent of Americans play video games with an average of two gamers in each game playing U.S. household. Some 51 percent of U.S. households own a dedicated game console, and of those that do, most own two. As for the gender breakdown, 52 percent of gamers are male and 48 percent are female. However, things get interesting when you examine the breakdown by age.</p> <p>"Women age 18 or older represent a significantly greater portion of the game playing population (36 percent) than boys age 18 or younger (17 percent)," ESA states in its <a href="" target="_blank">report (PDF).</a></p> <p>Also interesting is that the number of female gamers age 50 and older increased by 32 percent from 2012 to 2013. ESA didn't provide any reasons for the rise, but we'd guess it has to do with accessibility, such as playing games on tablets and smartphones.</p> <p>Not surprisingly, casual and social game play on mobile devices and online went up "significantly" as well. Among the most frequent gamers, social games are now the most popular, increasing in popularity by 55 percent from 2012 to 2013.</p> <p>Image Credit: <a href="" target="_blank">Flickr (włodi)</a></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Consoles games Software study News Fri, 22 Aug 2014 17:32:41 +0000 Paul Lilly 28400 at DFC Intelligence: Nearly All PC Game Sales are Digital Downloads <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/steam_games.jpg" alt="Steam Games" title="Steam Games" width="228" height="169" style="float: right;" />Physical media in the PC gaming sector is nearly dead</h3> <p>Think for a moment about the last 10 PC games you purchased. If the statistics presented by analyst DFC Intelligence are correct, than at least nine of those games were digitally downloaded as opposed to physical copies. Long gone are the days when you'd walk into Software Etc. and emerge with a bag full of game boxes containing floppy disks, and later CDs. <strong>According to DFI Intelligence, 92 percent of all PC game sales around the world in 2013 were digital</strong>.</p> <p>DFC Intelligence provided that tidbit to <a href="" target="_blank"><em>PCR</em></a>, though it didn't say what the outlook for 2014 looks like. However, there's no reason to believe that trend is reversing, especially if you've walked into a GameStop lately -- the PC section has been reduced in most stores to a sad little rack that would normally hold a few accessories.</p> <p>Going digital isn't a bad thing, nor has it hurt developers and publishers. DFC said earlier this year that the <a href="" target="_blank">PC games market leapfrogged console gaming</a> in revenue for the first time.</p> <p>"Among core gamers there is a heavy overlap with most console gamers also playing on a PC. The big difference is that consoles are now the luxury item and PCs are the necessity. Just a few years ago the reverse was true. This means PCs have the broader audience," DFI Intelligence owner David Cole explained at the time.</p> <p>It's not hard to believe. As our sister site <a href="" target="_blank"><em>PC Gamer</em> points out</a>, EA <a href="" target="_blank">announced</a> in its Q1 financial results for fiscal year 2013 that it made more money from PC sales than PlayStation 3, and it credited digital sales as the reason why.</p> <p>Welcome to the future.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> DFC Intelligence digital downloads games Software News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 17:15:32 +0000 Paul Lilly 28387 at Blizzard's Bumping Up the Price of World of Warcraft Subscriptions in the U.K. <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/wow_2.jpg" alt="WoW" title="WoW" width="228" height="165" style="float: right;" />As subscribers flee, subscription pricing goes up</h3> <p>Gravity ensures that most of what goes up must also come down (even that helium filled balloon will return to Earth one day, minus the helium inside), but when it comes to World of Warcraft, the world's most popular MMORPG, the opposite is true. That's to say that hot on the heels of Blizzard Activision announcing that <strong>WoW's number of subscribers have gone down, the price of a subscription is going up. </strong></p> <p>"We regularly look at our pricing around the world and from time to time we make changes in light of local and regional market conditions. As such, we want to give everyone a heads-up that we will shortly be adjusting the pound sterling subscription price of World of Warcraft," Blizzard Activision <a href="" target="_blank">announced on</a>.</p> <p>Beginning November 13, a monthly sub will rise to £9.99 for 30 days (up from £8.99), to £28.17 for 90 days (up from £25.17), and £52.14 for 180 days (up from £46.14). The suggested retail price of the 60-day prepaid time card will be £20.99.</p> <p>Players with recurring/auto-renewing subscriptions at the time of the price change will keep their current price for two years, as long as there are no interruptions.</p> <p>Some 800,000 players fled World of Warcraft in the last quarter, bringing the total number of subscribers to 6.8 million. That still qualifies WoW as biggest MMORPG in the world, though it's a far cry from its peak of 12 million in 2010.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> activision blizzard Draenor games MMORPG Software world of warcraft News Mon, 18 Aug 2014 18:53:48 +0000 Paul Lilly 28368 at Play 'Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare' Free for 72 Hours <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/pvzgardenwarfare.jpg" alt="Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare" title="Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare" width="228" height="128" style="float: right;" />Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare sprouts on EA's GameTime</h3> <p>The original Plants vs. Zombies hooked gamers on its unique and quirky style of tower defense, and to this day it's a fun time waster, especially if you've never played it before. It was even great (and arguably better) on tablets, though that's a discussion for a different day. Today's topic is <strong>Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare, a $30 third-person online shooter that's free through EA's Game Time program</strong> for a limited time.</p> <p>In case you're not familiar with it, Game Time is EA's way of offering gamers an extended trial of games, and to promote its Origin digital distribution service. At present, you can download the full version of PvZ Garden Warfare at no cost and play it for 72 hours. Should you decide to buy the game when the timer runs out, you'll retain all your progress, saved games, unlocked characters and weapons, and other goodies.</p> <p>Not all gamers are fans of EA's Origin service, and for some, that might be a deal killer. However, we have to give props to EA for offering promotions like this, which is probably a necessity if it's going to try and compete with Valve's Steam platform, which also frequently runs promotions and tantalizing sales.</p> <p>If you want to give PvZ Garden Warfare a spin this weekend, <a href="" target="_blank">head over to Origin</a> and claim your extended trial.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> EA Electronic Arts games gametime origin plants vs. zombies garden warfare pvz Software News Fri, 15 Aug 2014 19:06:11 +0000 Paul Lilly 28357 at Heads Up: EA Tosses Battlefield 4 on Game Time, Play Free for a Week <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/bf4_screenie_0.jpg" alt="Battlefield 4" title="Battlefield 4" width="228" height="145" style="float: right;" />Try BF4 free for up to a week</h3> <p>Have you heard both good and bad things about Battlefield 4 and now can't decide if you want to grab a copy? Don't sweat it -- <strong>Electronic Arts just made BF4 its newest "Game Time" title, meaning you can play the full version for free for a limited time (up to 7 days in this case)</strong>. Yes, that entails going through Origin, EA's digital distribution platform, but if you're okay with that, you can download the title and hop right into the action.</p> <p>"Go ahead and try it on. Take a bite. Look under the hood. This is the full game so check out every feature and every option, and play for as long as the Game Time clock runs," EA says.</p> <p>If you play out the full week (or just a portion) and decide to buy the game, your progress will be saved so you can pick up right where you left off, EA says.</p> <p>Not your cup of tea? EA is also serving up Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning on Game Time, giving you 48 hours of free play time.</p> <p>You can find out more information about either one by <a href="" target="_blank">going here</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> battlefield 4 bf4 game time games origin Software News Fri, 08 Aug 2014 17:08:58 +0000 Paul Lilly 28316 at Microsoft Squashes $350 Xbox One Rumor <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/xbox_one_controller.jpg" alt="Xbox One Controller" title="Xbox One Controller" width="228" height="153" style="float: right;" />That ad you saw for a €349.99 Xbox One? It was posted in error, Microsoft says</h3> <p>Console gamers had reason to be excited when an online ad depicted the Xbox One getting a price cut to €349.99, which hinted at a global price cut. Unfortunately, that excitement was short lived. <strong>Microsoft threw a wet blanket on the rumor and confirmed with our sister site, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Tech Radar</em></a>, that the Xbox One listing with a reduced price was made "in error"</strong> and that it doesn't have any current plans to lower the price.</p> <p>Microsoft already lowered the price of the Xbox One this year by removing the Kinect motion control sensor as a mandatory part of the package. In doing so, Microsoft has been able to offer the standalone console for $399 instead of $499, putting it on par with Sony's PlayStation 4.</p> <p>There have also been rumors that Microsoft will release some Xbox One bundles in the near future, including one on August 26th that will package Madden NFL 25 with the $399 Xbox One.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> console games Hardware microsoft xbox one News Thu, 07 Aug 2014 17:38:00 +0000 Paul Lilly 28309 at Activision Blizzard Sees Decline in Profit and WoW Subscribers, Still Beats Expectations <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/wow_1.jpg" alt="WoW" title="WoW" width="228" height="153" style="float: right;" />World of Warcraft loses 800,000 subscribers in three months</h3> <p>Some <strong>800,000 questing game players fled from <em>World of Warcraft</em> during Activision Blizzard's fiscal second quarter</strong> ended June 30, 2014. That leaves the world's most popular MMORPG with 6.8 million subscribers, enough to maintain its top spot among the competition. Those who quit the game were disproportionately concentrated in the East and similar to the seasonal decline experienced during the second quarter of 2012, Activision Blizzard said.</p> <p>The company reported a profit of $204 million, or 28 cents per share for the quarter, down from $324 million (also 28 cents per share) in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue declined 8 percent to $970 million from $1.05 billion year-over-year. However, adjusted revenue of $658 million beat out analysts' expectations for the quarter.</p> <p>"Our better-than expected performance was driven by continued strong digital sales from Blizzard Entertainment's <em>World of Warcraft, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls</em>, and Blizzard Entertainment's newest franchise, <em>Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft</em>, which recently launched on the iPad and continues to be well received by audiences around the world, as well as digital sales from Activision Publishing's <em>Call of Duty</em>," <a href="" target="_blank">said Bobby Kotick (PDF)</a>, CEO of Activision Blizzard. "Based on our results, we are raising our full-year outlook and we expect to grow our non-GAAP revenues year-over-year and deliver record non-GAAP earnings per share for the full year."</p> <p>Activision Blizzard raised its full-year forecast to earnings of $1.29 per share, up from a previous $1.27 per share, and now expects to generate $4.7 billion in revenue, up from $4.68 billion.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Activision Blizzard games revenue world for warcraft wow News Wed, 06 Aug 2014 17:34:27 +0000 Paul Lilly 28302 at