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  • Xona Games Title Accepted Into XNA Game Studio Contest

28th August 2009

Xona Games Title Accepted Into XNA Game Studio Contest

xona gamesNova Scotia – Indie studio Xona Games has announced that their arcade shooter Duality ZF has been accepted into Microsoft’s Dream Build Play 2009 Challenge. Duality ZF is an original Xbox 360 arcade shoot’em up featuring 4x multiplayer and dual play being developed by twin brothers Jason and Matthew Doucette. Following their philosophy of “Give the power to the player. The game’s difficulty should arise from enemy strength, not player weakness,” Duality ZF will be playable by anyone of any skill level.


Game Features as listed on the game’s website:

  • DUAL PLAY lets you control both fighters with the left and right thumbsticks.  The d-Pad also controls the “left” fighter.
  • DUAL PLAY is optional.  Use it only if you want.  Solo play is default.
  • DUAL PLAY is for beginners and experts alike.  Beginners should dual play in the easy modes.  Our weakest beta tester, who never plays video games, beat stage one with dual play.
  • DUAL PLAY is not difficult to grasp in gameplay.  All our beta testers managed it within a few game plays.  It turns out, most Xbox gamers are already used to controlling each thumb independently for independant purposes.
  • DUALITY ZF is not an expert-only bullet hell (danmaku, bullet curtain) shoot’em up.  Anyone can play it.  A four year old beat stage one in the easiest mode, including the intimidating end boss you see in the YouTube videos.
  • DUALITY ZF allows eight independently controlled fighters on the screen at once, a shoot’em up first.  This is possible via four players each using dual play.  The impact of eight times the firepower blew us away, and forced us to offer additional unlockable difficulty modes to challenge such extreme gameplay.
  • DUALITY ZF grows to match the skill of every player on the planet with unlimited unlockable difficulty modes.  These unlockable modes will be untainable by the average solo player, but are a bonus to elite players.  Elite players will have a “bullet hell” style experience, but this is out of the ordinary.  We are excited to see gameplay captures of these most elite players.
  • DUALITY ZF scoring system awards points proportional to the enemy strength and attack.  The same scoring formula used for all difficulty modes.  If the enemy is twice as hard to kill, you get twice the points.  The scoring system does not “care” about, or factor in, the difficulty mode, only how tough the enemies are.  It was important to make scores from all difficulty modes compatible, and we acheived this.
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21st August 2009

New Games and Old Games With New Features

UbisoftCanadaUbisoft Montreal has launched the first in-game trailer for Avatar The Game. The trailer shows off Avatar The Gamethe game environment and some very interesting creatures, along with several explosive combat scenes between human forces and the native Na’vi people on the planet of Pandora. I can tell just by watching the trailer that this game is going to popular in the Village Gamer home office what with its big guns, big flying machines and fighting creatures. Pandora looks to be a place of incredible scenery full of imagination and wonders to be discovered – all while trying to stay alive (sometimes quite a challenge for me) and battling for planet supremacy. We will most definitely be looking forward to this game’s release on November 24th.

Ubisoft has also released more PC Games from their back-catalogue on GoG.com. The newly re-released titles include Heroes of Might and Magic® 2 Gold Edition, Heroes of Might and Magic® 3 Complete Edition, The Settlers® 2 Gold Edition and the stunning Might and Magic® 6 Limited Edition, which includes parts 1–6 of the landmark RPG series. All games are totally DRM-free, fully compatible with XP and Vista and accompanied by mounds of extras, including soundtracks, wallpapers, forum avatars, maps and much more.

SARF StudiosSARF Studios has opened their studio’s new web site, which introduces their flagship product, an innovative, social virtual world named Planet SARF. Realizing the momentum, trends, and potentials related to environmental sustainability, Planet SARF has focused on creating an amusing and educational virtual experience based on the principles of Edutainment, educational entertainment as an Planet SARF Airfieldeffective learning tool.

Using highly detailed 3D imagery, players will be immersed in an open-ended, virtual adventure as they explore the beauty and mysticism of the Yucatan rainforests, Mexico. Players can choose a customizable character, which will be their Avatar in a virtual adventure that includes water rafting, diving, exploring, mini games, and learning.

Planet SARF will educate players about the flora and fauna as the players advance throughout the game. Informative pop-up windows will show specifics regarding the animal, plant, or geological characteristics encountered in the game. Research has found that not only are virtual worlds effective learning tools for children, they are also valuable opportunities for children to practice social and life skills.

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13th August 2009

Army of Two The 40th Day Will Continue The Battle In January 2010

EA GamesMontreal – Start 2010 with a bang! EA Montreal has announced that Army of Two™: The 40th Day will ship on January 12, 2010 in North America and January 8, 2010 in Europe. The sequel to the 2008 multi-platinum co-op shooter sees the return of the ultimate two-man private military team, Salem and Rios. Trapped in the middle of Shanghai as it falls under attack, the two must work as a team to survive relentless enemy assaults and escape the city collapsing around them. Gamers who pre-order* Army of Two: The 40th Day now will have exclusive access to the game’s all-new explosive multi-player mode, ‘Extraction,’ at launch. This mode will be unlocked for all other players one month after the game ships.

Army of Two: The 40th Day features a more robust and redesigned multiplayer experience with four Army of Two 40th Dayunique multiplayer modes including ‘Extraction’. ‘Extraction’ pits a team of four players against a series of unique enemy waves as they move from point to point in the ruined city. Players must strategize as a unified team to combat the different forces of the 40th Day Initiative while trying to get out alive.

In Army of Two: The 40th Day, private military contractors, Salem and Rios must fight their way through Shanghai to survive a carefully orchestrated series of catastrophes that are dragging the massive city to the brink of ruin. Jonah, the mastermind behind the 40th Day Initiative, has amassed an army of skilled soldiers to level the city in his attempt to rebuild an empire according to his vision and ideals. Now, the Army of Two must fight their way through ravaged city districts as they try to beat the odds.

Army of Two: The 40th Day will be available for the Xbox 360® videogame and entertainment system, the PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system and the PSP® (PlayStation® Portable).

* Pre-order offer has restrictions. See www.eastore.com and participating retailer sites for details

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23rd July 2009

EA Montreal Signs Renowned Comic Artists Chris Bachalo and Jock to Army Of Two The 40th Day

EA GamesMontrealEA Montreal has announced that renowned comic artists, Chris Bachalo and Jock have lent their artistic talents to Army of Two™: The 40th Day. The sequel to the 2008 multi-platinum co-op shooter, Army of Two: The 40th Day sees the return of the ultimate two-man private military team, Salem and Rios. As the action heroes fight for survival in a city under siege, the soldiers must make moral choices cooperatively that affect the pair as a team. Each moral decision sets players on a course that affects the gameplay and direction of the storyline. Bachalo and Jock have been enlisted to illustrate the long term impacts of these ‘morality Army of Two 40th Daymoments’.

On July 24 and 25 from 2pm – 4pm PST during San Diego Comic-con, Chris Bachalo will be signing original Army of Two: The 40th Day artwork at EA’s booth (# 5213).

“Chris and Jock are amazingly talented artists. We’re excited that they have been able to contribute these evocative illustrations to depict the long-term consequences of the players’ key moral decisions,” says Reid Schneider, Executive Producer, EA Montreal.

“These new morality choices are an innovative new feature that we believe will give a new layer to the cooperative experience in the game. Chris and Jock’s work give players’ decisions real weight and resonance,” added Alex Hutchinson, Creative Director EA Montreal.
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14th July 2009

Madballs In Babo Invasion Available on XBLA

playbrainsOttawaPlaybrains, an independent game development studio specializing in the digital download arena, are excited to announce that their pride and joy, the love-child of their silicon loins, Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI) will finally be available for excitable gamers everywhere to purchase and download from Xbox LIVE® Arcade on Wednesday 15th July.

Following highly successful US and UK media press tours, the gaming journalistic community have Madballslavished Madballs in…Babo:Invasion with a rarely seen level of praise for a debut title from a new development studio. Universal in their undiluted acclaim, The Koalition.com had no hesitation in claiming that “…this will be the best arcade game released on Xbox Live this year”, while Team Xbox stated that this was “…one of the most innovative ideas in multiplayer gameplay we’ve seen in a really long time.” Resolution-Magazine simply declared, “Without a shred of doubt, Madballs is the best Xbox LIVE Arcade title that I have ever played.”

Commenting on the impending release of Madballs in…Babo:Invasion, President of Playbrains, Scott Simpson said,

“Having spent the past two years of our lives working so hard on MiBI, the entire Playbrains team are so gratified by the response the gaming media have given our game. We always felt that we had a special title on our hands, offering an unprecedented level of gameplay features, options, depth and polish, not yet seen in a digital download title. We are unbelievably proud and excited to finally be able to let players everywhere get their headshot on…”

Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI), is available to purchase and download for 800 Microsoft poinst from Xbox LIVE® Arcade on Wednesday 15th July.

About Madballs in…Babo:Invasion

A gameplay rich, feature laden “casually hardcore” action shooter, Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI) is that rarest of gaming commodities: a genuinely unique title. Featuring the recently re-released Madballs™ characters, Oculus Orbus™ and Horn Head™, from the popular 1980’s toys best remembered for their outrageously bad looks and graphically colorful names, MiBI is an arena-based 3D shooter where players are able to design their own combat maps almost instantaneously by placing a combination of map tiles to create a never-before-seen map before gameplay starts. Truly, no two games are ever the same.

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16th June 2009

Mad Dog McCree Gunslinger Pack For Wii Has Shipped

Digital LeisureGormleyMajesco Entertainment Company, an innovative provider of video games for the mass market, today announced that the Mad Dog McCree Gunslinger Pack for Wii developed by Digital Leisure, has shipped to retail. When ruthless outlaw Mad Dog McCree goes on a rampage with a nasty pack of wanted fugitives in tow, they leave death and destruction in their wake. You are the only gun-slinging bounty hunter who can take him down in this three-in-one collection of classic arcade games that includes: Mad Dog McCree, Mad Dog 2: The Mad Dog McCreeLost Gold and The Last Bounty Hunter.

Players use their Wii Remote or Wii Zapper accessory as the ultimate six shooter in this Wild West adventure featuring live actors. Fast reflexes and precision shooting are the keys to survival when outlaws ambush from every angle and nail-biting showdowns are only a bullet away. As they pursue Mad Dog and four other wanted fugitives, players can choose from three different difficulty levels to hunt them alone or join forces with others in two multiplayer modes – Posse and Rebel. In Posse Mode, players work together with up to three friends in pursuit of a combined high score, while in Rebel Mode they work independently with up to four bounty hunters for individual high scores. Whether sharpshooting solo or with a posse, the Mad Dog McCree Gunslinger Pack lets players deliver their own brand of Wild West justice and walk away with their gun smokin’!

Mad Dog McCree Gunslinger Pack for Wii is rated T for Teen and packs three complete arcade classics onto one game disc. The game is available now for the suggested retail price of only $19.99.

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8th May 2009

Digital Extremes to Develop BioShock 2 Multiplayer Experience

Digital Extremes2K Games, a publishing label of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., announced today that it has signed a partnership with Digital Extremes to develop the multiplayer experience for BioShock® 2. Under this partnership, Digital Extremes is working closely with the creative team at 2K Marin to develop a new and substantial element that enhances the lore and fiction of the BioShock universe.BioShock 2

“The fans asked for a multiplayer experience and we answered,” said Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. “With Digital Extremes delivering a multiplayer experience for BioShock 2 that features all of the things that make BioShock unique, we’re holding ourselves to a high standard so that we can deliver the depth and variety that fans of the BioShock universe demand.”
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27th April 2009

Bethesda Softworks To Publish A2M’s WET for 360 and PS3

A2MMontrealBethesda Softworks®, a ZeniMax® Media company, announced today that it will publish WET™, an innovative action game from Artificial Mind and Rubi MaloneMovement (A2M). WET, in development for the Xbox 360®video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system, is slated for a Fall 2009 release.

WET is a highly stylized third-person shooter that seamlessly blends acrobatics, gun play, and sword kills. With dual pistols and a samurai sword, you can engage in combat while sliding on floors, running on walls, jumping, flipping, and performing amazing acrobatic moves – leaving a massive body count in your wake.

“We’re very excited about the opportunity to bring WET to all gamers,” said Vlatko Andonov, president of Bethesda Softworks. “Our proven success as a publisher which focuses on select, innovative titles matches up perfectly with WET’s new class of gameplay.”
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17th March 2009

BioWare Announces Mass Effect 2

The Dark Second Chapter to the Epic Science-Fiction Trilogy – Coming Early 2010 for Windows PC and Xbox 360

Bioware Corp Edmonton – Leading video game developer BioWare™, a division of Electronic Arts Inc. today officially announced Mass Effect™ 2, the highly anticipated sequel to the multi award-winning 2007 hit, Mass Effect. The Mass Effect trilogy is a masterful science fiction adventure set in a vast universe filled with dangerous alien life forms and mysterious uncharted planets. In this dark second chapter, Saren’s evil army of Geth soldiers has just been defeated, and humans, who are still struggling to make their mark on the galactic stage, are now faced with an even greater peril…

“We’re going to surpass the extraordinary gaming experience we brought our fans in Mass Effect by delivering intensified combat and expanded weapon options as well as increased depth of planet Mass Effect 2exploration, all while delivering a powerful, emotionally engaging story,” said Dr. Ray Muzyka, General Manager and CEO, BioWare and General Manager and Vice President, EA. “Mass Effect 2 is shaping up to be an unforgettable RPG-shooter experience, taking players on a non-stop roller-coaster ride filled with stunning plot twists and no-holds-barred action.”

Mass Effect 2 is coming to PC and the Xbox 360 video game system in Early 2010. To see the exclusive new teaser trailer check out the website here: www.masseffect.com

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12th March 2009

EA Montreal Announces ARMY OF TWO: THE 40th DAY

The Ultimate Two-Man Private Military Team is Back in Action Delivering New and Groundbreaking Cooperative Gameplay

EA Canada MontrealEA Montreal, a studio of Electronic Arts Inc., today announced ARMY OF TWO™: THE 40th DAY. The ultimate two-man private military team of Salem and Rios return in this epic sequel where they must survive and prevail in a city under siege. EA Montreal is once again leading the next evolution in co-op shooter games offering a fresh, innovative and fluid co-op experience with a deep arsenal of customizable weapons so players can team up with their friends online for the fight of their lives. Army of Two 40th Day

With ARMY OF TWO: THE 40th DAY, we’re pushing the tactical two-man military team into new battlegrounds offering a completely organic and rich co-op experience to deliver an action-packed co-op shooter this winter,” says Reid Schneider, Executive Producer, EA Montreal. “As chaos blankets Shanghai, China, you must rely on your partner to survive as you weave through a broken city left devastated in a mysterious wake.”
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