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Consoleation: Xbox One, Gamers Zero?

Xbox One Image

If you listen to the social mediasphere, the Xbox One is dead already. If you listen to common sense, however, you'll realize that the battle is just beginning.

Interview with Insomniac's Ted Price on Fuse

Fuse Screenshot

At E3 2011, as part of the Electronic Arts press conference, Insomniac Games announced Overstrike—a campy, over-the-top cooperative shooter. Around a year later, the game had received a facelift and a new name: Fuse. I spoke to Insomniac Games' CEO Ted Price about rebranding, multi-platform development, and what it is like to launch a brand-new franchise at the end of a console cycle.

The Constant Monster

BioShock Infinite Screenshot

BioShock Infinite is a violent game, and it has to be. That's a contrast to BioShock, an equally violent game where combat conveyed nothing about its main character and had little to do with the game's themes other than spurring the player to engage in its various economies. Any stimulus—using plasmids to solve environmental puzzles, for instance—would have sufficed. That's not so in Columbia. Violence is essential to who Booker DeWitt is, and what Columbia is. Their story cannot be told without it.

Consoleation: The PlayStation 4 pricing game—What might Sony do?

Sony PlayStation 4 Screenshot

It's understandable to want to jump to conclusions based on Mr. Kato's statement above. Does this mean that Sony would dare to repeat its $600 miscalculation from 2006? Could this mean higher costs than expected at retail and potentially put off consumers? Does this open the door for Microsoft to undercut Sony out of the gate?

Consoleation: April 2013 NPD reaction—Spring swoon

Injustice: Gods Among Us Screenshot

Speaking candidly, I don't believe that anyone was ready for the numbers that we saw from NPD for the month of April... regardless of whether you're an armchair analyst like myself or whether you're a top-line professional in this business. Hardware sales numbers, in particular, were just painful to digest. It wasn't a total collapse, but when you drop by more than 40% from the past year—and when that April's comp targets weren't crazy to begin with—it just looks awful.

Consoleation: Pre-NPD—April 2013 projection comparison (versus Michael Pachter)

Nintendo Wii U Deluxe Image

In advance of this afternoon's release of NPD retail video game sales data for April, I wanted to compare my range projections with those of Michael Pachter from Wedbush Securities.

Interview with Modern Dream's Ollie Clarke

Interview with Modern Dream's Ollie Clarke, The Button Affair

You might not have heard of a new game outfit called Modern Dream yet, but you will. They've recently released a slick 2D runner called The Button Affair, and are already starting a new project inspired by the works of acclaimed abstract painter, Wassily Kandinsky. I spent a short while chatting with Oliver Clarke, one of the members of Modern Dream, and this is what he had to say about buttons, affairs, and what it's like to start making your own games.

Consoleation: April 2013 NPD data pre-release speculation

Injustice: Gods Among Us Screenshot

NPD sales data for April is set to arrive tomorrow (May 16th). I don't expect many surprises nor many changes to the status quo when it comes to hardware sales rankings for the month.

Extra Credits: Differences in Scale vs Differences in Kind

Extra Credits looks at employing scale (i.e. more enemies) and tone to break up gameplay and maintain a player's interest level. Extra Credits' example of a game that got this right was Call of Duty: Modern Warfare—who knew that Call of Duty could be the game to actually teach us something?

Consoleation: Addressing Bobby Kotick's comments from Activision's Q1 2013 Earnings

Call of Duty: Ghosts Screenshot

I'm not going to completely break down Activision Blizzard's results or get into the publisher's specific future as I see it. I will quickly say that I believe Call of Duty: Ghosts will be the best-selling console video game of 2013, although Grand Theft Auto V will push Ghosts for dominance. I also believe that Skylanders: Swap Force will have strong competition from Disney Infinity this year.

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