The ESA may have been in major trouble for the past few weeks as publishers Activision, Vivendi and LucasArts left the US-based trade body. No reason was cited for their departures. However, EA has stepped up to the plate to defend the body, criticizing those who left by lambasting their “lack of leadership.”
Speaking to Gamesindustry.biz at a recent press event, Jeff Brown, VP of corporate communications at EA, commented: “They’re a big company and we feel that when you’re a big company you’ve got a responsibility to consumers to work on policy issues which are very, very important to consumers. And the best way to do that is with an industry consensus. That’s the way it’s been done with the ESA in the US, and with ELSPA in the UK.”
He added that EA was not reconsidering its position in the trade body, urging the ESA to make a strong case to its remaining members for their ongoing participation.
When asked about E3, Brown responded that “EA is 100 per cent committed,” adding that other major publishers will also be present at the event to show off their wares. The event, organized by the ESA, will run this year from July 15-17 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
As with all big-budget upcoming games, TimeShift has gotten a star-studded voice cast of its own, including Michael Ironside, the man behind Sam Fisher in Splinter Cell. Hollywood stars Dennis Quaid and Nick Chinlund will also add their voice talents to the upcoming time-shifting FPS.
TimeShift’s lead character, Colonel Michael Swift, will be voiced by Dennis Quaid, who has worked on movies such as Frequency, Inner Space and Traffic. Best known for his role in Con Air, Training Day and The Chronicles of Riddick films, Nick Chunland will voice General Mitchell – the military overseer for Project TimeShift. Finally, Michael Ironside, the man behind Splinter Cell’s Sam Fisher, will be the voice of scientist Professor Krone. Ironside is also well-known for his many television roles on hits like ER and Desperate Housewives, as well many films such as Total Recall, Starship Troopers and Top Gun.
In development at Saber Interactive, TimeShift is scheduled for worldwide release this September on PC and Xbox 360.
THQ has revealed that it has cancelled the Xbox 360 version of The Sopranos game. Previously announced for PS2, PS3 and Microsoft’s next-gen console, the mafia game is now a PS2 exclusive scheduled to hit stores later this year.
As for Scarface, Vivendi today announced that a PSP game based on the classic film will be released later this year. Dubbed Scarface: Money. Power. Respect., the game is in development at Farsight Studios, and unlike Radical Entertainment‘s upcoming console game, the handheld offering will combine turn-based strategy with real-time combat.
The game will parallel the events of the movie, taking a different approach than The World is Yours. It will offer a single-player campaign as well as four-player wireless matches when it ships this October.
A new F.E.A.R. website has gone up, teasing us with the tagline “COMBAT IS COMING”. There’s only a countdown on the site, with 18 days remaining, along with a registration link for those wanting more information.
No details were provided, but many are speculating that this is the about the addition of team-based combat to the horror FPS, though it is yet to be validated.
VU Games has announced Eragon, an upcoming fantasy-adventure game tie-in with the movie of the same name. Scheduled for release this November for the PC, PS2, Xbox, GBA, DS, PSP and Xbox 360, Eragon is inspired by Christopher Paolini’s best-selling fantasy novel. The movie is expected to hit theatres on December 12.
Based on the best-selling novel, this epic fantasy-adventure centers on a young farm boy named Eragon whose destiny is revealed with the help of a dragon. Eragon, now a Dragon Rider, is swept into a world of magic and power, discovering that he alone has the power to save – or destroy – an Empire.
The game will let players engage in a combo and magic-based combat system, including finishing moves, multiple grapples and degradable blocks with counter attacks. Players will also be able to take part in flight-based combat and summon dragons; the game will also feature two player co-op featuring team attack bonuses and dragon fight/flight combo gameplay.
E3 will be host to the game’s public unveiling, with Fox and VUG premiering video footage and first look at the gameplay.
These games have shipped throughout North America on March 21:
- CSI: 3 Dimensions of Murder (PC)
- The Godfather (PC, PS2, Xbox) – out in Europe on March 24
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (PC)
- Ice Age 2: The Meltdown (PC, PS2, Xbox, Gamecube, DS, GBA)