Nicholson Electroplating Arson Case Trailer Has Crazy Damage and Crazy Multimillionaires

The Nicholson Electroplating Arson Case drops for LA Noire next week and has our favorite stoic hero investigating an explosion that did a lot of damage, killed a lot of people and apparently involves Howard Hughes in come capacity. At this point, given that I have every achievement in the game, Phelps can try and solve the Lindbergh baby kidnapping for all I care. I just want the points! Well, that and I like the game, but yeah, I’m all about the points.

Zombie State Games announces Scavengers; includes 1" custom bear figurine

Last year, Zombie State Games put out an interesting but not very good zombie game called, of course, Zombie State. It took a look at the grossly overgamed subject from a global perspective, with nations trying to contain the walkin’ dead while developing technologies to combat them. Some good ideas, but between the worn out theme and some clunky mechanics, it didn’t quite make the cut. This year, they’re going camping. With the Hamburger family. In a light card game called Scavengers, which I doubt will make my review pile but the Zombie State folks are really nice so I don’t mind giving them some press. In a shameless attempt at hit-trolling, I’m hiding the image of the 1″ custom bear figurine that this game ships with past the “read more” below. Go on. You know you want to see it.

There, see. I’m not holding out on you. Press follows.

Each year the Hamburger family escapes into the great outdoors for a liittle rest and relaxation. During their stay eager animals scavenge for food that has been left unattended to take home and make meals of their own.

Light enough to delight brand new gamers and yet versatile enough to intrigue the saltiest veterans, this game is a must have! Scavengers is a card-based family game. The game’s compact box makes it easy to take camping or over to the neighbors for game night. This game is sure to leave your friends and family hungry for more!

Scavengers is an addictive game for 2-4 players ages 10 and up and comes in a compact box approximately 8×5 inches.

The Game Includes

1 custom bear figurine

1 game board (map of the camp ground)

69 food scraps (tokens)

3 crow tokens

44 scavenger cards

24 camper cards

16 food cards

1 rulebook

Expected release date August, 2011. $24.95 retail.

Next up for Marvel Pinball- Captain America

Hot on the heels of last month’s somewhat disappointing Fantastic Four table, ZEN Studios is already announcing a new Captain America table coming to XBLA’s Pinball FX2 platform and PSN the week after next.

I thought Fantastic Four was good, but I really wished that they had gone with a more fun Jack Kirby retro-style. The gameplay was also too easy, and after the simpler Mars table I was hoping for something more challenging like Rome or Blade. Cap looks very promising though- it’s got a retro World War II style which could be really neat. I’m hoping from some tougher modes and more secrets.

Press follows, if you need to be convinced that this will totally be worth three bucks.

EN Studios today announced Captain America as the next Super Hero to star on his own downloadable Marvel Pinball table from ZEN Studios on Xbox LIVE® Arcade and PlayStation®Network. Joining the Amazing Spider-Man, the Invincible Iron Man, Wolverine,Blade and the Fantastic Four Cap and friends are called upon to battle some of the world’s most dangerous Super Villains.

Set in the classic World War II environment inspired by Ed Brubaker’s Captain America 65th Anniversary Special, the table engages Cap, Bucky and members of the Howling Commandos in a full assault on Baron Zemo’s castle, where Zemo’s Death Ray and canisters of Adhesive X must be neutralized. As the game progresses, Cap will need to free his friends in the Howling Commandos and defeat several low-level missions as he works to confront the Sleeper before taking the Cosmic Cube from the Red Skull in the final battle.

The Captain America table follows richly detailed designs and offers another action-packed adventure to the critically acclaimed Marvel Pinball tables already available. For the latest Marvel Pinball news and more details on the Captain America table, visit

Captain America will seamlessly integrate into the Pinball FX2 platform on Xbox LIVE® Arcade, and Marvel Pinball platform on PlayStation®Network, with full social feature support. “Fantastic Four” will also feature new Achievements and Trophies, operators menu and rule sheet.

Captain America will be available on June 28, 2011 for PlayStation®Network and June 29, 2011 for Xbox LIVE®Arcade.

The Lord of the Rings War in the North: Eagles

Another new trailer for LOTR: War in the North, this one detailing your eagle ally. The game looks pretty cool, actually, and the people at Snowblind are really excited about it, to put it mildly.

Nintendo's Satoru Iwata on Free Games (He's No Fan)

The Wall Street Journal has a two part interview with Satoru Iwata, discussing all sorts of game related things from the Wii U to the new wave of cheap and sometimes downright free games.

This fellow really hates mobile and social games.

And don’t even go there when it comes to freemium content. Here’s a few snips:

We have no intention to provide a property to any other platforms, or making them available in a mode that does not require consumers to pay at all. Nintendo is a company, which is trying to maintain the overall value of video games.

If we were simply going to say OK, the only the way we could sell more products is by decreasing the price, then there wouldn’t be a bright future and the entire industry will fold. When we look at the entire system of freemium, it’s not always that everyone is happy with the offers. Actually, there’s only a limited number of people who are willing to pay and many others are not paying for game titles at all.

Nintendo is not interested.

I’m not interested in offering software for free of charge. That’s because I myself am one of the game developers, who in the future wants to make efforts so the value of the software will be appreciated by the consumers.

That’s just a small sampling and this entire two part interview is well wroth a read. Iwata may come off a tad dickish here but I certainly understand his point of view and if Nintendo doesn’t want to start charging less for its products, that’s really their business. His view on “software value” is very interesting and I think will be a big battleground in the coming years.

Booth Babe Bonanza? Oh Yes.

Rock Paper Shotgun has always been a thoroughly awesome blog, but their latest piece on “booth babes” – the scantily clad women who populate E3, catering to hoards of salivating game journos, random buyers and the like – is one of the most hilarious things they’ve ever done.

Basically a photo essay that turns the camera on the guys who are way, WAY too excited to get their pictures taken with random babes (or are just creepily filming them from a distance, or trying too hard to get upskirt shots, etc.), it’s just utterly wonderful. Thanks for bringing the satire, gents!

Read on: E3 2011 Booth Babe Babes Bonanza!

Peter Moore: There Will Be No Offline Games

Gamasutra talks with EA Sports’ Peter Moore on the future of the EA Sports label as well as bits on the Wii U, social gaming, and how my boy Peyton Hillis shocked the world.

Regarding the Wii U:

“My dev teams — their heads are exploding, in a good way and a bad way,” Moore says, and it appears the label will use caution in its eagerness here, too: “How do we look at this new technology? We don’t just want to bolt this on; this has to be relevant to the sports gamer.”

Moore says he likes Wii U, “from the perspective of once again, Nintendo is putting a different spin on things, showing that it’s not all about graphic fidelity and processing power. In the world of sports, our minds are racing as to how we can bring a sports game to life in a unique way.” For example, he feels that being able to use the controller to call plays in Madden would be “kind of a no-brainer for us.”

There is no info here, sadly, about how the developers of NCAA 12 rated Michigan’s defense a B+.

Seriously guys. Really. Come on now.

LBP on PS Vita

Cool video of LBP for Vita from the PS Blog showing off some features as well as the visuals. What a cool looking device.

Ex-Rockstar North Developer Goes Mobile

Chalk up another developer eschewing AAA development for going it alone to tackle the mobile market. Anthony Gowland, formerly of Rockstar North, and who has senior and lead design roles for games such as GTA and Red Dead Redemption on his resume, has left the company and formed Mainly About Games, a studio that will focus on mobile gaming according to a story on Develop.

“With the varied distribution opportunities now available to developers, it felt like the perfect time to move away from AAA development,” Gowland said. “It’s totally viable for a small team, or even a single dedicated guy, to create and market a successful game independently.”

Thanks Blue!

Call of Duty: Black Ops Annihilation Pack on June 28

So it looks like the latest content pack for BLOPS is going to drop on Xbox 360 June 28th, as many already knew due to “leaks” of box images.

This PR is full of flowery rigmarole and somewhere inside are details on what’s actually in the thing:

Call of Duty: Black Ops, the best selling game ever on the Xbox 360, is ready to blow fans away with the worldwide release of its third content pack on June 28th,: Call of Duty: Black Ops Annihilation. Black Ops continues to draw millions of gamers online globally, logging billions of gameplay hours since its launch in November. Fueled by the breakthrough First Strike and Escalation content packs, The blockbuster title is also already the highest selling add-on content in Xbox LIVE history, according to Microsoft. In fact, more gamers play Call of Duty on Xbox LIVE than on any other platform. The newest offering, Annihilation, will launch first on Xbox LIVE and features four new multiplayer maps and a Zombie experience that’s sure to keep gamers coming back for more.

“With Annihilation, Black Ops fans will get four exciting and unique multiplayer settings with Hangar 18, Drive-In, Silo and Hazard,” said Treyarch Studio Head, Mark Lamia. “Players will also enjoy an all-new Zombies experience, Shangri-La, an exotic and mysterious map filled with deadly traps, dark secrets and innovative gameplay that will challenge even the most daring Zombie hunters.”

(I have decided to not strike quotes in these PRs, I’ll let you wade through the hyperbole.)

Additionally, to celebrate the upcoming release of Call of Duty: Black Ops Annihilation, Treyarch will host a Double XP weekend beginning Friday, July 1st.