Monday, August 10, 2009

News Roundup, August 10 2009

German company Crytek, developer of the Farcry and Crysis series’, says it may have to move its operations out of the country due to efforts by German politicians to ban the production and sale of violent video games. The company has a second office in Budapest, and Crytek president Cevat Yerli has previously raised the possibility of relocating all of their operations there if German censorship of violent games becomes too restrictive. As a precaution, Crytek has reportedly already shifted the development of their forthcoming Far Cry 2: Mutilated Chunks of Innocent People You’ve Brutally Killed for Absolutely No Reason Splattering Everywhere Special Collector’s Edition to their Budapest office. Crytek is a fine developer, and the Crysis series has received well-earned acclaim from gamers despite the handicap of requiring the National Nuclear Security Administration’s supercomputer at Los Alamos to run at full settings, so I wish them the best.

Blizzard has announced that the long-awaited Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty will be released in the first half of 2010. Blizzard says that they need the time in order to get their online service upgraded. While they’re at it, perhaps they could also take a few moments to give the game a better subtitle. Wings of Liberty isn’t a name that says “thrilling saga of epic battles across space for the future of the galaxy,” it’s a name that says “feminine hygiene product for the busy modern woman on the go.”

It’s since been taken down for reasons unknown, but someone on Ebay was trying to sell an Xbox 360 that was supposedly signed by former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for the low, low price of 1.1 million dollars. Can someone explain to me what the point of having something like this could possibly be? If you like a politician enough to want their autograph, you would think you’d want it on election campaign materials, or something related to their political philosophy, or perhaps, you know, some other object that is at least in some vague way actually connected to them. Consumer electronics don’t really fit the bill. On the other hand, my copy of Frank Sinatra: Live at the Meadowlands signed by Jimmy Carter and the late Ayatollah Khomeini is one of my most prized possessions, so perhaps I shouldn’t judge.

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