Unless you are completely out of touch, the US is knee deep in debates over gun laws due to increased violence with weapons. Tennessee's Republican Senator, Lamar Alexander, is making sure the nation focusses on the real problem... video games...
During an interview with MSNBC:
CHUCK TODD (MSNBC): Can you envision a way of supporting the universal background checks bill?
LAMAR ALEXANDER: Chuck, I'm going to wait and see on all of these bills. I think video games is a bigger problem than guns, because video games affect people. But the First Amendment limits what we can do about video games and the Second Amendment to the Constitution limits what we can do about guns.
Last time I checked, video games haven't ever killed anyone and no science has ever been able to link video games to violent crime...
Speaking of violent crime, EA has been trying to force the Medal of Honor franchise down our throats for several years. After two iterations have failed to catch on, Peter Moore had this to say:
We are taking Medal of Honor out of the rotation, and have a plan to bring year-over-year continuity to our shooter offerings. We struggled with two challenges: the slowdown that impacted the entire sector and poor critical and commercial reception for Medal of Honor Warfighter. Medal of Honor was an obvious miss. The game was solid, but the focus on combat authenticity did not resonate with consumers. Critics were polarized and gave the game scores which were, frankly, lower than it deserved.
Sure Peter, blame the media for low scores and the lack of critical reception for an overall poor game. It's always easy to point fingers at the media.
EA's CEO, John Riccitiello, is probably not Nintendo's favorite person right now. In an investor call, he said that the fourth generation consoles haven't been released yet and doesn't consider the Wii U a fourth gen console.
This comes hot on the heels of bad news for Nintendo. First, the TV TiVo and Netflix integration for the Wii U has been delayed once again. Originally set to come out in December of 2012, then delayed to January 2013, the service is now listed as "Early 2013." With the way Nintendo still counts upcoming titles as Launch games for the Wii U, who knows when the service will actually come.
Financially, the Wii U has not performed well. Nintendo announced that the console has 3 million units worldwide--down from the 5 million projected at this point. They also downgraded sales forecasts for the early part of 2013.
Nintendo President Satoru Iwata also denied reports that Nintendo will offer any type of price cut to spur demand of the new console saying that the Wii U is already sold at a loss. The Wii U is currently priced at $299.99 for a basic unit and $349.99 for a premium unit and game.
Though the 3DS found itself in a similar position with poor sales, Nintendo was able to create demand by lowering the price and releasing a ton of great First Party Software. Should Nintendo have held off on the Wii U until they had some great games available for it?
Another system lacking a lot of great games is the PlayStation Vita. While I love the device, there isn't much to play on it. Early reports are suggesting that Killzone: Mercenary, which is set for a September 17, 2013 release, is actually a good looking and competent First Person Shooter. Developed by Guerrilla Games, could this be the first of many great games for the Vita in 2013? With nine one hour Single Player Missions and up to eight player Multiplayer, I sure hope so.
Insomniac, once a great Second Party developer for Sony, has expressed some strong words against their former partners. With the release of Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault, on the PS3, November 2012, the title was supposed to be available on the Vita as well. Sony had Developer Tin Giant work on the Vita port, available for free with the purchase of the PS3 game, and they delayed the release until January. It appears that the game won't be released in January and Sony isn't talking. Insomniac in a now deleted Facebook post had this to say:
Insomniac cannot make any comment about the game. We have repeatedly asked Sony and Tin Giant for an update to share with our fans. They have not provided any update we are allowed to share.
We are sorry for any disappointment, but there is nothing we've authorized to release publicly. Trust us in that we share your frustration, and have been passing your comments on to Sony, we also advise you contact Sony directly to share your disappointment and frustration.
This signals to me that Insomniac and Sony haven't been on the same page in a while and may be why the Developer is Developing Fuse with EA.
Speaking of Fuse, the title will once again miss its schedule release date. This time, the game will slip from March 2013 to sometime before June 2013.
Valve's Gabe Newell is in the news again. Speaking at the University of Texas (GO LONGHORNS!!!), he says that Apple is the biggest threat to the newly announced Steambox.
The threat right now is that Apple has gained a huge amount of market share, and has a relatively obvious pathway towards entering the living room with their platform. I think that there's a scenario where we see sort of a dumbed down living room platform emerging — I think Apple rolls the console guys really easily. The question is can we make enough progress in the PC space to establish ourselves there, and also figure out better ways of addressing mobile before Apple takes over the living room?
Check back with us later for more coverage at CVGames.