Posts Tagged ‘Visceral Games’

Report: Visceral’s Star Wars was all sorts of troubled

When Electronic Arts announced last week they were shutting down Visceral Games and giving the studio’s in-development Star Wars game to another team, they muttered about “fundamental shifts in the marketplace” and needing “to pivot the design”. You know, they spouted a bunch of empty business speak which didn’t say much about what had gone wrong with Visceral and the game. That’s publicly-traded companies for you. However! A report on Kotaku talks to a number of former Visceral folks, painting a picture of a deeply troubled game and studio. If you were into the idea of ‘Uncharted but Star Wars’ and are curious about what happened, it’s interesting reading. Read the rest of this entry »

Podcast: Middle-earth: Shadow of War, The Evil Within 2 and our nemeses

Nemesis this

Who’s your worst nemesis? This week the RPS podcast, the Electronic Wireless Show, is talking about our most reviled enemies, against whom we hold deep, lasting grudges. Matt harbours a lasting bitterness for Silencer, the magic-cancelling war jerk of Dota 2. Adam is fuelled by a dark hatred for the final boss of Ancient Domains of Mystery, a giant ‘@’ symbol called Andor Drakon. And I still maintain a grievance against an entire electricity company in Final Fantasy VII. They killed my friends.

And speaking of nemeses, we’ve had plenty of time to play Middle-earth: Shadow of War, the icon-hoovering game of anti-establishment orcs, which has us divided. The Evil Within 2 also gets some attention, as Adam runs from spectres and fails to stealth-kill hideous monsters, and I am publicly shamed in Tekken 7 by a robot who takes off her head and throws it at me.
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EA to close Dead Space studio Visceral, in-development Star Wars game moving to Vancouver

visceralstarwars

EA have just announced that they’ll be “ramping down and closing” Visceral, the studio behind the Dead Space trilogy. Visceral have been working on an untitled Star Wars project, described as an “action-adventure”, and Amy Hennig, formerly of Naughty Dog and Crystal Dynamics, moved to the studio in 2014 to work on that project as senior creative director. EA’s statement regarding Visceral’s closure suggests that they’re unhappy with the status of that game and they plan to “pivot the design” to fit “fundamental shifts in the marketplace”. Full statement and thoughts below.

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Have You Played… Dead Space?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

Nostalgia is supposed to be about the things of our early years, but recently I’ve been feeling nostalgic about games released much more recently than my usual rose-tinted diet of Ultima and Daggerfall. I’ve only gone and started missing Dead Space like it was a childhood friend. Read the rest of this entry »

EA’s Star Wars Plans: Battlefront II, Visceral & Respawn

Electronic Arts CFO Blake Jorgensen had several Star Wars games to discuss during an earnings call yesterday. I’m not entirely sure how an earnings call works but I imagine if you keep mentioning Star Wars games that your company is publishing at some point in the near future, everyone is happy.

“How many Star Wars will there be Mr Jorgensen, and when can we expect them?”

“Many and soon.”

Wild applause breaks out in the boardroom.

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Battlefield: Hardline Wot I Think-In-Progress, Part 1

Me, in the event anyone ever asked me to give this game a score

Battlefield: Hardline [official site] went on sale in the US today, and unlocks for the UK on Friday. We didn’t have access until today, so I’ll run this review in chunks to give you some sense of what we make of it without having to wait too long. In this first part, I’m looking at the first half or so of the campaign, which details a Miami police officer becoming embroiled in an escalating drug war with a side-helping of corruption in the force.
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Battlefield: Hardline Trailer Launches Rockets, Cars, Game

Getaway care held aloft by power of friendship.

Whatever to do about a game like Battlefield: Hardline [official site]? I had a lot of hope for it to begin with, slowly chipped away by a disappointing beta and unenthusiastic previews. It was a great opportunity for either some introspection on the nature of law enforcement (unlikely) or a 70s buddy cop style tale about half a city getting blown up to stop some robbers. Trailers have taken themselves too seriously and the multiplayer didn’t seem to want to scale down to its new setting, instead feeling like an urban map pack for an older game. But hope(line) springs eternal: the launch trailer, embedded below, ahead of release on March 20th is bombastic, fun and almost too sweary even for me.

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EA Offers Up Battlefield Hardline Premium Details

I don't think Roy Walker hosts Catchphrase anymore

Is a trailer really a trailer when it’s actually just different bits of a still image of a man with some particle effects? I’d say that was closer to those bonus Catchphrase rounds where they gradually reveal the image for contestants to guess until one of them says “Uh, is is Battlefield Hardline Premium?” and Roy Walker shouts “RIIIIIIGHT!” even though it’s not a catchphrase.

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Hands On: Battlefield Hardline

After a mixed reaction to the beta, including from our own Graham, Battlefield Hardline [official site] is looking to prove that it isn’t simply a reskin of Battlefield 4 with policemen instead of soldiermen. In many ways, it looks like it is going to have trouble shaking that assumption. But in one particular way (a single game mode called Hotwire), it is going to come out fighting. I visited EA to take a look.

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Battlefield Hardline Multiplayer Open Beta Next Week

This seems outside police procedure.

Several years ago, I had a meeting with EA and pitched Battlefield: The Thin Blue Line, an FPS adaptation of the ’90s Rowan Atkinson sitcom. [Did you now? -ed.] Players would engage in gossip, give young shoplifters stern talking-tos, and even bop a yob with their truncheon. The final mission would be to sneak a big frilly bra into DI Grim’s office during a surprise inspection from the Superintendent. Unfortunately, EA instead picked up Battlefield Hardline [official site], a quick-drawing, dirty-talking, civil rights-ignoring celebration of police militarisation. Shame. I bet it doesn’t have even one single cascade of misunderstandings with hilarious consequences.

The point is, EA are launching a short multiplayer open beta test for Hardline next week.

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Battlefield Hardline Slips An Awful Lot

Battlefield Hardlines, originally slated for 21st October this year, has now been given a significantly later release date. The Space Year 2015. “Early” 2015. On a slippy day for EA, which also saw the announcement of Dragon Age: Inquisition sliding into November, DICE’s cops-n-robbers reinvention of the Battlefield series seems to have taken a much more serious hit. Apparently in response to what maybe wasn’t that brilliant of a beta test in June.

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Battlefield Hardlimes To Get Another Beta This Fall

Crime doesn't pay, you say? Tell that to these sweet Oakley sunglasses.

Battlefield Hardlimes‘ surprise E3 beta is officially over and done with, or in military speak (that I have learned exclusively from videogames), Charlie Mike Oscar Bravo Rhinoceros Chimpanzee Overalls Tuba. Given how Battlefield 4‘s launch turned out, however, I’m quite glad to hear that another beta will be happening this fall. Maybe… maybe this one will finally launch in actual, factual ship shape?

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Cop Ops: Battlefield Hardline Singleplayer To Be Less Linear

Battlefield Hardlimes might feel eerily similar to Battlefield 4 in ways that call into question its worthiness as a full release, but it’s important to keep in mind that we haven’t seen everything yet. And while Battlefield definitely isn’t known for its memorable singleplayer campaigns, there is potential here. For one, it won’t be Just Another War Story because cops and robbers. And for two, Visceral has quite the singleplayer pedigree, what with all those times they killed outer space. I spoke with creative director Ian Milham about his plans, and here’s what he told me.

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Battlefield Hardline: On Meaning And Theme In Multiplayer

This is not a police car.

Battlefield Hardline takes the series’ now familiar formula and gives it a new theme. It’s still about large teams of players killing, capturing and controlling vehicles in various objective-based multiplayer modes. But instead of visiting exotic locations and fighting as a military force, the game takes place in the streets of Los Angeles and players play the roles of cops and robbers.

I’ve been playing the closed beta since last Friday, and in between rounds of criminal mayhem I’ve been thinking a lot about meaning and structure in multiplayer game design. Now that the beta has opened up to all, let me exorcise those thought-demons here.

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Despite Hardline, EA Says Battlefield Not Being Annualized

Upon hearing EA claim that Battlefield will not succumb to annual sequelitis like Call of Duty, Assassin’s Creed, and their ilk, I was immediately reminded of that time it snapped up the domains for Battlefields 13-20. I’m not saying it’s indicative of anything, just that I can’t help but think of it, given the context. But yes, despite the fact that we’re now on our second consecutive battleyear thanks to Battlefield Hardline, the series is apparently not an annual guarantee.

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EA Runs Out Of Plugs, Leaks BF Hardline E3 Trailer Itself

You think you know lines? You think you know their relative structural integrity? Newflash: YOU DON’T KNOW SHIT ABOUT LINES. Battlefield Hardline? That’s where it’s at. Hardest lines in the biz. The business of lines, to be clear. Also it’s about police and robbers, and now – finally, after roughly 167 leaks – EA’s seen fit to release an official trailer. It’s got a release date too: October.

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Hardline Miami: The Next Battlefield Is About Police

War sometimes changes, but its basic color scheme sure doesn't

There’s gonna be another Battlefield. Of course there’s gonna be another Battlefield. The sun rises and falls, the grass sways innocently as worms make sweet, sweet wormlove below, and virtual men keep on shooting each other. Cut, print, put on repeat until sun collapses and time ends. Battlefield: Hardline, however, at least looks a little different. While EA’s revealed very little at this point (“tune in during E3 yada yada yada blugggggh”), the focus appears to be on cops, robbers, SWAT teams, and the like. So Battlefield: Payday, basically.

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April Cowers: Dead Space Free On Origin Until May

Ahhhhhh, memories.

What is the most terrifying thing? I mean aside from spiders. And human nature. And that one episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Yep, that’s right: being forced to admit there is a legitimate reason to open Origin, to dig it out of your PC’s sullen grave of a start menu and rack your brain to remember your password. But at least now you can pair terror with terror, as Dead Space will be completely free on Origin until May 8th. And that’s free to keep – not just to play.

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Dun-Dun-Dun-Dun-Duh-Duh: EA Gets Star Wars Exclusivity

I was actually John Madden all along.

The more disenfranchised portions of the peanut gallery have spent years calling EA an evil empire and claiming that it’s done every horrific act short of blowing up Alderaan with a Death Star, so this feels oddly fitting. It’s probably not the headline you were looking for, but it does not lie: EA has officially snapped up rights for all things Star Wars and videogame-y. DICE, Visceral, and BioWare will be doing development honors on various offshoots, apparently. So then, Battlefield: Star Wars – Old Knights Dying In Space (On Ice!) in 3… 2… 1…

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Alarming: Dead Space 3 – Awakened DLC

Somewhere in the back of my space-scarred and delirious mind, I knew that there was some DLC for Dead Space 3 in the pipeline. I’d intended to write a reminder to be annoyed about it on a post-it note because it was announced before the game had even been released and contained what sounded very much like the end of the story. Even though I enjoyed Isaac’s latest escapade, it didn’t leave me wanting more, which is perhaps why I’d forgotten all about The Awakened. It’s out tomorrow and there’s a trailer below.

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