Round Up: Guitar Hero II 360, Doom XBLA, Sega's Dark Materials
- Today at Microsoft's Amsterdam-based X06 press event, representatives from Guitar Hero publisher, and recent Activision acquisition, RedOctane announced that Guitar Hero II is in development for the Xbox 360. An early look at the game will debut at the annual event, alongside a new X-Plorer guitar-style controller for the Xbox 360. The news follows recent confirmation from Activision's chairman and CEO Robert Kotick that the franchise will be made available for multiple platforms in 2007. “With its large integrated hard drive, Xbox 360 provides an incredible platform for facilitating downloadable content,” said Dusty Welch, head of publishing at RedOctane. “We believe there is no better title to feature micro-transactions than a music game like Guitar Hero II, where the content is the basis of your experience. The relationship with the Xbox Live Marketplace creates endless possibilities for exclusive content.”
- The classic first-person shooter Doom has been released today over Xbox Live as the latest title for the service's popular Xbox Live Arcade. First unveiled as part of Microsoft's X06 event, the Live-enabled title includes both single-player and 2-4 player cooperative and Deathmatch modes over Xbox Live or splitscreen. Originally created by id Software, and developed for Xbox Live Arcade by Nerve Software, Doom features enhanced HD graphics, along with 5.1 surround sound. With the full version costing 800 Microsoft Points ($10), the game also includes an assortment of achievements and access to leaderboards featuring match-making capabilities.
- Sega announced a new agreement with New Line Cinema and Scholastic Media to create video games based on upcoming films based on author Philip Pullman's 'His Dark Materials' trilogy. The trilogy of books, having sold more than 10 million copies worldwide, is comprised of 'The Golden Compass', 'The Subtle Knife', and 'The Amber Spyglass'. The first film, 'The Golden Compass' (called 'Northern Lights' in the UK), will be produced by New Line Cinema and Scholastic Media, and star Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig (James Bond in the upcoming Casino Royale) with Chris Weitz (About a Boy, Antz) directing. 'The Golden Compass' is set to be released on November 16, 2007, with Sega's video game adaptation assumed to ship near the movie's release date.
- The latest updates on Gamasutra sister alt.gaming weblog GameSetWatch include the myth of the 40 hour video game, a look at "trippy" computer games, and a look back at Falcom's classic Popful Mail.
- News on Gamasutra's game education sister site Game Career Guide includes a student thesis titled "Gameplay Video Segmentation Method", and the keynote speakers for FuturePlay 2006.
- Also updated today: the latest Gamasutra job postings, including openings from Blizzard Entertainment, Climax Studios LA, Day 1 Studios, LucasArts, Lucasfilm Singapore, and Slingo.