Do you feel that throbbing? That must mean it is time for another edition of Gamer Pulse, our weekly look at video game news. Kyle Black normally handles these duties, but this weekend he is out communing with nature while searching for Sasquatch, and has let me take a crack at Gamer Pulse. He will be back next time, so until then, let’s get to it!
Nintendo company president, Satoru Iwata, has taken a 50% pay-cut and issued an apology to early buyers of the 3DS handheld after Nintendo slashed the price by $80 last week. In an effort to reward and appease customers that paid full-price for the unit at launch, Nintendo is offering 20 free game downloads, as part of a “3DS Ambassador Plan“ to users who log onto the 3DS e-shop before the price cut goes into effect August 12th. Iwata had this to say in a public letter on the company website:
“This unprecedented timing for a price cut is because the situation has changed greatly since we originally launched the 3DS. We decided it was necessary to take this drastic step in order to ensure that large numbers of users will continue to enjoy the 3DS in the future.
If the software creators and those on the retail side are not confident that the Nintendo 3DS is a worthy successor to the DS and will achieve a similarly broad (user) base, it will be impossible for the 3DS to gain popularity, acquire a wide range of software, and eventually create the product cycle necessary for everyone to be satisfied with the system.
Those customers who purchased the 3DS at the very beginning are extremely important to us. We know that there is nothing we can do to completely make up for the feeling that you are being punished for buying the system early.”
Of course if you read Comic Booked back when the 3DS launched, we predicted in the comment section of our 3DS introductory article a quick price-drop or device upgrade, so we are not surprised in the least. Good luck Nintendo 3DS! We hope this move rights the ship, and eagerly anticipate some of the new games that are likely to be the biggest incentive to get more people to purchase the 3DS.
Minecraft has been in the news a lot this week. Not only was it announced via twitter that Minecraft has sold its 3 millionth copy; a full game beta will be coming to XBLA. Rumors continue to circulate that Minecraft developer Mojang, is on the acquisition list of nearly every big developer, but comments made by Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson during an interview with Develop made it clear that there are currently no solid plans for such a merger.
In Mortal Kombat news, in addition to Freddy Krueger being a downloadable character, there will also be free skins of “Klassic Sub-Zero” and “Retro Cyber Sub-Zero” included when you download them all together in the “MK Compatibility Pack #4.” See the video below to see these skins in action.
The hit game Borderlands is getting a sequel! Borderlands 2 is currently being developed by Gearbox and is looking at a April 2012 release date for Xbox 360, PS3, and PC. Early rumors of note include: no weapons from the first game, better enemy AI, interactive player dialogue, a vehicle with four seats, and the dual-wielding, to name but a few. Stayed tuned for future information!
In acquisition news, Sony Computer Entertainment has purchased game developer Sucker Punch. This does not come as a surprise since Sucker Punch is responsible for the inFamous and inFamous 2 games, as well as Sly Cooper. The inFamous series is awesome and has become a corner-stone franchise for the PS3 system. We reviewed the latest installment hereat Comic Booked when it released in June. Sucker Punch is a studio from Bellevue, WA founded by a former Microsoft employee. For the last 10 years they have been making games exclusively for Sony. I think it is safe to say that trend will continue. The financial details of this acquisition have not yet been revealed.
In not so pleasant World of Warcraft news, Blizzard has announced that another 300k users have dropped their WOW subscriptions, bringing the total to 900k in a year. To combat this trend, Blizzard had made plans back in May to release new content and expansions more quickly in the future, out of fear that players were burning through new content faster than anticipated. This may actually be good news for WOW players, as new content is always a WIN! It will be interesting to see if World of Warcraft can stop this subscription attrition.
Gamestop has announced that they will be bundling Resistance 3 with every pre-order for Sony’s Playstation brand 3DTV. We reported on the announcement of this unit during E3; a 3-D monitor targeted at gamers for a $500 price-point. The monitor was originally supposed to ship with Resistance 3, but Sony has changed plans and is shipping the monitor with MotorStorm: Apocalypse. Anyone considering pre-ordering the unit might be tempted by Gamestop’s offer to include Resistance 3 as per the original deal, AND get MotorStorm to boot! Will this be enough to tempt a 3-D weary consumers?
That about wraps up this week’s edition of Gamer Pulse! Thanks for reading and having me as a quest contributor. If Kyle hasn’t been dismembered by Sasquatch, or slaughtered by the Blair Witch, then his camping trip will likely have been a pleasant one and he will be back here in the next installment of Gamer Pulse. Until then, check in with Comic Booked for hot video game news, and happy gaming!