Leading today’s news is the official release of Hot Head Games ‘s justice-seeking, action-RPG blending epic storytelling, addictive gameplay, humor and evil chickens title DeathSpank  on the PlayStation Network for $14.99. Xbox 360 gamers will be able to join the fight for justice on XBLA (for 1200 Microsoft points) tomorrow, July 14th. Developed under the direction of The Secret of Monkey Island creator Ron Gilbert, DeathSpank takes players through a heroic adventure in the boots of the titular hero DeathSpank as he hacks and slashes his way through epic quests in a vast world filled with vibrant, eccentric and terrifying characters.
“While DeathSpank is definitely one of the funnier games out there, it’s more than a one trick pony,” said Vlad Ceraldi, Director of Game Development for Hothead Games. “We’ve built a game with fast-paced, addictive combat set in a world that has a tremendous amount of depth that is filled with dynamic characters, colorful environments and tons of cool weapons and loot. And yes, we still have ponies too — trick ponies!”
“The team at Hothead has really made the perfect experience for the summer,” said Jamil Moledina, Outreach Director, Business Development for EA Partners. “DeathSpank is a high-end and fun game, yet incredibly accessible. It’s very easy to pick up and play, both in terms of its classic arcade controls, as well as the convenience of downloading it straight to your console.”
Players who download the game, which is rated T for Teen, will be placed in the boots of the mighty DeathSpank, “Dispenser of Justice”, “Vanquisher of Evil” and “Hero to the Downtrodden”, embarking on his life long journey is to search for and find a mysterious artifact known only as, “The Artifact”. Along his journey, DeathSpank will rescue orphans, defeat a local tyrant, help an aging adventurer, and dive headfirst into an even deeper mystery. The game’s accessibility makes for a fun, addictive experience where players will find themselves solving crazy puzzles, collecting massive amounts of loot and hearing witty dialogue. For those with friends, DeathSpank also features local co-operative gameplay, allowing friends to jump in and out of fighting through this adventure on the same console as both DeathSpank and his trusty, magical sidekick, Sparkles the Wizard.
Dead Rising 2 Executive Producer, Keiji Inafune and Producer, Shinsaku Ohara, will be at Comic-Con in San Diego to unveil development stories and discuss the upcoming Zombrex Dead Rising Sun motion picture, with a Q&A session to follow. Their talk will take place on July 22 in Room 25ABC from 12:00-1:00 P.M. If you’re going to Comic-Con, Capcom  will be in booth #4844, and the Capcom Store will offer items exclusive to Comic Con – including 10 of the Dead Rising 2 motorcycle jacket.
The Montreal International Game Summit  has officially launched their 2010 site and confirmed November 7th & 8th as the date for its 7th annual event. Taking place at the Hilton Bonaventure in Montreal, MiGS offers over 80 sessions and activities, addressing continuing professional training needs, fueling the five main themes of the video game industry: business, arts and visual effects, design, programming and technical aspects. In addition to two keynote speakers, there will be an invited speaker for each of the themes.
Also new this year is a contest to win free admission to this year’s conference. If you want to attend quality conferences and workshops, in addition to meeting video game industry professionals, enter the Montreal Takes Control contest for a chance to win. Send a photo or a drawing on the theme Montreal takes control to Géraldine Philippin . The winner will be chosen based on originality alone. Only one photo or one drawing per participant is allowed. You have until July 27, 2010 to send in your work and your contact information. The winner will be announced August 3rd, 2010 via Facebook , Twitter , and the MiGS newsletter.
The Exhibition Zone  is being renewed this year at MiGS. Divided into three distinct sections (Education, Recruitment and Demonstration) to facilitate the visit, the Exhibition Zone will also offer many activities. For this seventh edition, new activities are on the menu such as D3D (a friendly competition simulating the main stages involved in creating a video game) and an open recruitment activity (free access to over 200 students or job seekers in the field of video games, mini interviews with industry professionals). With new advantageous rates, entertainment and competitions, the Exhibition Zone will allow you to take control of your space and showcase your products and services.
Those interested in becoming show sponsors are welcome to organize a competition, activities by the heated pool or give out t-shirts bearing your corporate identity and that of MIGS. Check out the sponsorship opportunities  or contact Sylvianne Pilon  – customized sponsorship packages are also a possibility.
Ludia  and FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) today announced the launch of the Family Feud for iPad® on the App Store for $6.99. The game brings an unparalleled Family Feud game experience to iPad owners, enhanced with eye-popping new HD graphics and incorporating Multi-Touch game play.
Based on one of the most successful family game shows of all time – which premieres its 12th season in syndication with new host Steve Harvey on September 13th (check local listings), iPad owners can now play anywhere, anytime as the leader of a ‘family’ in a contest to name the most popular answers to survey questions posed to 100 people. The game features all of the favorite elements of the show as played on television, including the scoreboard, face offs, strikes, stealing and ‘fast money’ rounds. Players also can enjoy Family Feud in multiplayer mode as they challenge family and friends head-to-head, or compete solo against the computer.
“We are excited to bring the Family Feud game, one of the most popular game shows of all time, to a device as immersive as the iPad,” said Alex Thabet, Founder and CEO of Ludia Inc. “This release further reinforces our cross-platform strategy of delivering high quality, family-friendly game experiences on the latest devices on which people like to play games.”
Family Feud for iPad features:
• Eye-popping HD Graphics designed and optimized for the iPad’s advanced capabilities.
• Two game modes: single and multiplayer.
• Fully customizable player avatars – choose hairstyles, clothing, accessories and more.
• Predictive text input and auto spell checker make typing answers lightning fast.
• Unlock bonus items as a reward for progress in the game.
• Authentic stage, theme music and sound effects create a true-to-show game experience.
“After more than three decades on television, the Emmy-award winning Family Feud continues to be one of the most beloved television brands,” said Olivier Delfosse, Director, Interactive, FME. “We are pleased to extend the franchise to devices like the iPad so that both fans and game show enthusiasts alike can experience Family Feud in thrilling new ways.”
MaRS  is celebrating the one-year anniversary of its successful Angel program, created to help its start-up clients connect with new funding sources. Since the program’s inception, more than 50% of presenting companies have received funding, with more recent participants in ongoing dialogue with interested investors.
Five MaRS Angel breakfast events have been held since June 2009 at the MaRS Centre. Clients from three practice areas – ICE (information technology, communications & entertainment), cleantech as well as life sciences and health care) are invited to pitch to a group of accredited investors. Co-Chairs Jim Meenan (MaRS Advisor), Ron Close (MaRS Advisor) and Jim Rae (a prominent life sciences executive) facilitate the company selection process and host the MaRS Angel breakfast events. The participating angel investors are highly regarded in their respective industries, with many sourced through personal networks from MaRS advisors, staff and community stakeholders.
Program feedback from both investors and companies has been very positive. “The MaRS Angel event that we attended was a huge success for us,” says Ray Newal, Founder and CEO of Jigsee. “We raised additional angel funds for our recent investment round as a direct result of being selected to present to the group. We were amazed at the high profile investors that these meetings attract. We are also grateful for the guidance and pitch coaching we received from the MaRS team in preparing for this event.”
Canaccord Genuity, the leading independent advisory and restructuring firm in Canada, was the first company to come on board in a sponsorship capacity – providing the funds to launch the program.
“The MaRS Angel program is playing a vital role in connecting entrepreneurs with qualified investors. Given the need for early-stage funding that this new generation of companies requires, we’re delighted to be a supporter of this program,” says David Kassie, Group Chairman, Canaccord Genuity.
The funds raised from angels are often the first substantial source of financing for early stage science and technology companies. “Through our Advisory Services group, MaRS has a unique window on a new generation of emerging companies,” says Ilse Treurnicht, CEO of MaRS. “We are very pleased with the feedback from respected angel investors. They appreciate that presenting companies are very well prepared for these meetings. Furthermore, they view MaRS as a valuable resource to help them grow companies over the longer term. Given the financing deals completed over the first year in a tough investing climate, it is clear this process is working.”
Absolute® Software Corporation , the leading provider of firmware-based, patented, computer theft recovery, data protection and secure computer lifecycle management solutions announced today that they have won an International Stevie Award  for Best New Product or Service of the Year – Computer Software – New Version for Absolute Manage in The 2010 International Business Awards. The International Business Awards are the only global, all-encompassing business awards program honoring great performances in business.
Nicknamed the Stevie® for the Greek word “crowned,” the awards will be presented to winners at a gala dinner on Monday, 27 September in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Istanbul, Turkey.
“Winning this award demonstrates that with the new features and functionality launched this year and those we continue to develop, including support for iOS 4, Absolute Manage is a world-class computer lifecycle management solution,” said Peter Frankl, Vice President of Lifecycle Management at Absolute Software. “Absolute Manage is one of the only computer lifecycle management solutions that can truly support a PC and Mac mixed environment while helping IT reduce costs and increase efficiencies.”
Recipients of International Stevie Award trophies were selected from more than 1,700 entries received from organizations and individuals in more than 40 countries.
“Despite the harsh economic climate, entries to the IBAs actually grew a bit this year, and that illustrates the increasing importance of The International Business Awards worldwide,” said Michael Gallagher, president of The Stevie Awards, presenters of the IBAs. “We congratulate all of the Finalists and International Stevie Awards winners, and we look forward to honoring them for their achievements at our gala awards dinner in Istanbul on 27 September.”
Revolutionary On-Demand software from Markham, Ontario’s Carlton Group  is able to replace the traditional and expensive legacy systems many companies have used to manage employee recognition and service awards. On-Demand software is an alternative that provides a robust yet cost-effective solution to companies large and small. Now any size company can have the power to motivate and engage their employees, sales teams and channel partners with Carlton Group’s On-Demand solution called Power2Motivate  (P2M).
In the past, companies have had little choice but to use expensive, inflexible legacy software systems to manage their programs. Costly to set-up and maintain, legacy systems require additional IT programming for every change, lengthy deployment times, and significant costs to reuse or transfer client-specific updates.
With Carlton’s breakthrough Power2Motivate solution clients can now launch programs quickly, deploying as many unique programs as they want, all within a simple pricing model. All P2M solutions are built and launch-ready – no IT required. A company simply adds their employee data and they’re ready to get started.
More importantly, P2M’s On-Demand design simultaneously deploys any new features, products and enhancements to all users globally. Over the past twelve months, P2M deployed more than 200 unique upgrades alone – all at no additional cost to clients.
P2M uses a “Collaborative Development” process that links client requests with the program design team. The team develops and then deploys these enhancements universally to be shared by the entire P2M user community. The result is a more robust technology system that benefits all its users.
Toronto’s Canada Type  font design studio has come to a font distribution agreement with American distributor Ascender Corporation . The design studio, which was founded by Rebecca Alaccari and Patrick Griffin in early 2004, has created a variety of high-quality typefaces popular with design professionals and creative enthusiasts. The Canada Type fonts have appeared on everything from large corporate projects to small personal design work.
“We don’t believe people should have to choose between quality and creativity when choosing a font,” said Griffin, co-founder of Canada Type. “We feel Ascender shares this belief. It is reflected in their passion for creating and licensing high quality, innovative typefaces. We look forward to seeing where Ascender can take our font collection.”
The Canada Type font collection  will add a number of enhanced versions of historical typefaces and expertly-designed original fonts to Ascender’s diverse collection of fonts. This includes an impressive lineup of popular script fonts and a variety of exclusive psychedelic fonts from the ‘60s and ‘70s. The Canada Type fonts are available in both TrueType and OpenType formats and can be found on the Ascender Fonts website. Ascender is also proud to offer the Canada Type fonts to its broad range of OEM/ISV customers including video game and Blu-ray publishers, software developers, web server application developers, and hardware manufacturers.
Following a recent announcement solidifying exclusive long-term distribution agreements for 10 new programs, Tricon Films & Television  is pleased to let us know about the sale of three of its signature properties, Family Renovation, Marriage Under Construction and House of Bryan to leading US specialty networks.
HGTV US has picked up all three seasons of Marriage Under Construction (39 X 30), a docu-soap that follows the personal and physical struggle of a newlywed couple renovating their first home for the first time. The series is produced by Tricon Films & Television and airs on HGTV Canada.
Sold to DIY Network are Family Renovation (13×30) and House of Bryan (13 X 30). Both are currently airing on HGTV Canada. House of Bryan challenges renowned host of Disaster DIY, Bryan Baeumler, to build his own home from the ground up in just six months. The series is produced by SI Entertainment. Family Renovation, produced by Ocean Entertainment, follows one family’s home renovation experience while living through it.
These three new sales add to Tricon’s existing roster of programming sold to networks in the US and around the world, with distribution sales to-date reaching over 120 countries.