The Revolving Door of Game Development

For those of you interested in getting into the game industry, I have some good and bad news: The good news is that positions are opening up left and right. The bad news is that they’re going to be filled by someone more qualified than you, sorry.

According to Develop’s Salary Survey, nearly 30% of industry workers will be changing jobs in 2010. If you look 2-3 years into the future, over 70% of employees will have changed jobs at least once.

Why the shakeup? The biggest reasons are that employees are looking for a new challenge (26%), or they’re looking for a bigger paycheque (20%).

The focus on recruiting for big studios is obvious: Ubisoft hired someone to hype their new Toronto studio opportunities, even though everyone in Toronto already emailed their resumes the day it was announced.

Check out Develop’s survey here.

Civilization V Announced

Firaxis Games recently announced the upcoming release of Sid Meier’s Civilization V. Talk about exciting I grew up playing Civilization and have played every single version since, along with (almost) all of the Expansions packs available.

Based on this trailer it’s time to begin a PC upgrade again…

Stay tuned we will bring you more info as we get it. In the meantime check out the official Civ V site.

Coming Fall 2010

XSEED Games: Lunar: Silver Star Harmony Goes Gold

The classic RPG Lunar: Silver Star Harmony has been reborn on the PSP and is coming to a retail outlet near you on March 2, 2010.

Game Trailer:

Following the epic journey of a young boy whose adventures to become the Dragonmaster eventually set him on a path to save the world of Lunar. With all new graphics, added gameplay features, and a re-mastered soundtrack, this re-imagined entry welcomes a new audience to the unforgettable series, with added story elements sure to intrigue returning fans.

Choose between the standard edition of Lunar: Silver Star Harmony, the Limited Edition version, which includes a CD soundtrack and a set of 13 exclusive “bromide” collector cards highlighting the girls of Lunar or the digital download version available on the PlayStation Store (available March 4th).

As an added incentive players that completed the demo of Lunar: Silver Star Harmony will have bonus starting equipment when playing the full version of the game when it is released (You still have time!). Visit Lunar: Silver Star Harmony for more information.

CONTEST: Lunch with Link

Link Tin KitAfter spending some time cleaning out the FeedYourConsole Closet I stumbled across this Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess Lunch box, with Wii Mote covers… Still in the original package.

In the interest of making room for some new toys we are giving this away.

What you get:

A – 1 Zelda branded Game Wallet – Game not included
B – 2 Wii Mote/Nanchuck Gloves – Wii motes/Nanchucks not included
C – 1 Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess Tin Lunch Box – Lunch not included

Here’s how you can enter:
Simply leave us a comment below with your favourite Link/Zelda moment and you’ll be entered in to a draw. We’ll randomly pick a winner in two weeks (March 12th). Canadian residents only.

SemiSolidMedia RockBand Jam Session

Rock Band Jam Session
SemiSolidMedia is at is again and RockBand Jam Session Live is coming back… Since March 2008 Rockie Raccoons has been hosting this melding of karaoke and the world’s most popular music video game.

Track listings are passed around. Request slips are filled-out. Beer is consumed. And when your name is called you and your friends take the stage to rock out on guitar, bass, drums and vocals in front of way more people that you could ever cram into your living room.

All equipment is provided. The event is Xbox 360 compatible for those who want to bring their own plastic axe to grind.

    Start Time: Saturday, March 6, 2010 at 9:00pm
    End Time: Sunday, March 7, 2010 at 2:00am
    Location: Rockie Raccoons
    Street: 2579 Yonge Street, 2nd Floor
    City/Town: Toronto, ON

Images, video, and news clips available at http://www.SemiSolidMedia.com/

RSVP on the events Facebook page.

The Bobby Kotick You Don’t Know

The gaming internet loves having a good target to funnel its hate and Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision has been at the barrel of the gun for some time. Kotick has taken the chance to speak about himself and Activision in his DICE 2010 keynote and he showed us his geeky gamer inside that has been locked away in the cold shell of a very expensive suit for years. Please take this with a grain of salt as it is coming from the man himself, but you should know that his gaming cred runs deep.

Continue reading “The Bobby Kotick You Don’t Know”

Girl Gamers – Be nice to them

The Frag Dolls

I was playing my usual weekly friends only game of left 4 dead over the weekend and realized that about half of my friends list now consist of female gamers. While we waited for some of our friends to show up, we got to talking about games, the things they like what some of the reactions to them have been. Guys – I have to admit that I’m rather ashamed of many of you.

The times surely have changed. I have female friends on my XBL list that play everything from the most simple of casual games like Hexic or 1 vs 100, music games such as RockBand to some pretty hardcore games like Gears of War 2 and Halo 3. Watch out guys, these chicks will whoop your ass – The old addage “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned” hold true in the realm of gaming (more on that later).

During our conversation, we discussed a variety of things that I’ve noticed and I wanted to get their opinion. For fun I took a look at their achievements and most of them have fared better on these games. I still can’t quite get past the Hard setting on Rockband, I refused to play Gears 2 on Hardcore and I know I don’t have the will or patience to finish Left 4 Dead 2 on the hardest difficulty.

They found that to be funny and felt it was a good time to open up a world of verbal punishment directed at me. I’m a big boy – I can take it. In the end they attributed it to the lack of focus myself and many other guys have with games and it makes sense. I (along with many of my friends) like to burn through a game so I can finish it and then go back later. The girls like to master the games for no reason other than they love the games.

I asked them if they could tell me what they loved about gaming online and gaming in general, but, also what really pissed them off. In the short time we had there’s what was said.

Likes:

  • A well played competitive game. Blow outs suck but every now and then it’s fun to just hand out an ass kicking
  • Meeting awesome people and becoming friends with them. You always have someone online to play something with.
  • Kicking guys’ who call them little boys or make sexist remarks to them out of lobbies.
  • An extension to the above point, when not in control of the Lobby, kicking their ass on the digial playground.
  • Relaxing and hanging out with some good online friends and having some laughs after a long day/week of work

Dislikes:

  • Being asked if they’d like to see a picture of someone’s package…and by package I mean weiner. (Come on guys….Really?!? For shame)
  • Being asked to send naked pics of themselves (They didn’t want to see your junk, what makes you think they’d want to send you pics of themselves?)
  • An extension to the above, they do not want to talk about their physical dimensions (Still can’t take the hint guys?)
  • Having sexist comments yelled at them (Ok…I’m guilty of that one…All in a fun competitive manor though)

In the end, the rest of ours friends jumped in and we set up our teams to get our game on. I muttered something to one of my friends asking her if she could send me a picture of her boobs (A joke of course…kinda…SHE HAS A HOT SOUTHERN ACCENT!!) and asked why she wasn’t baking me a pie. She laughed…it was a strange sort of laugh and just before the game started, she told me that I was dead, a shiver rolled down my spine. Fast Forward 10-15 minutes later, I was dead at her hands. Almost immediately I received a voice message where she was laughing hysterically and called me her little bitch. After that game she helped me finish my 1st Left 4 Dead 2 Hardcore mode level.

The point I’m trying ot make guys is this: Every guy I know asks me how I managed to bag a girl who likes to play videogames because they all want one of their own. So why do so many of you act like such idiots? Be nice to the girls who play games. You know you want one of your own but acting like a moron isn’t the way to find one. Who knows, one of the gals online just might be able to help you get those tough to reach achievements.

First Impressions: Heavy Rain Demo

Heavy RainAfter all the hype I couldn’t wait to try the demo for Heavy Rain.  Your presented with a short walk through the lives of an FBI Agent and a Private Investigator.  Lasting maybe 30 minutes your taken through a typical series of dialogue, NPC interactions and crime scene investigations.

I found the controls clumsy, having to hold buttons and directions to walk adds unnecessary effort to an otherwise simple action. Also interacting with the environment and other people leaves much to be desired.  Action buttons that are to small to read or are spinning rapidly around the characters head can lead to missed opportunities or discussion points that seamed to be times with some responses.

Where this game leaves everything behind is the graphics – Talk about life like characters, you can actually see the pores on their faces.  These look like people you would see in a movie, a really well done CGI movie.  The sound effects and the voice acting are also top notch.

All in all I think this game will appeal to many, but not this gamer. Let us know what you thought of the Demo.

Available: February 23, 2010
Developer: Quantic Dream
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment

Halo Legends: The Prototype

Halo LegendsHalo Legends Preview #2 is up and ready to be viewed.

In “The Prototype,” human marines struggling to defend a secret weapons research facility from invading Covenant troops are finally ordered to destroy everything rather than let the weapons and valuable navigational data fall into the hands of the Covenant. In a desperate but noble sacrifice, a war-torn officer dons the prototype suit of powered armor being developed at the facility in a last-second gambit to buy time for his soldiers to escape. The episode plays to the strengths of Bones impressive ability to represent aerial and mecha-style combat.

Watch the Preview: Halo Legends: The Prototype

Aliens vs. Predator Demo Now Available for PS3

Alien Vs. Predator

A quick fix from Sega today surrounding an update on the PSN today to address joining multiplayer game issues in the PS3 version of the demo. Also the new version of the AvP demo now features added functionality for PlayStation 3 games to create their own matches and browse for open slots to join other in session games.

We are confident that the matchmaking issue has been fixed with this new demo and we will be monitoring community activity closely over the coming days to ensure that it has been fully resolved. We would like to thank the community for all of their valuable feedback and continued patience,” said Gary Knight, European Marketing Director of SEGA Europe.

Interestingly enough our very own SlayerAgamon raised concerns over the multiplayer Deathmatch only options for this demo – and has raised a fuss over other game demos only offering this… In the same Article from Sega, Rebellion clarified the reasoning behind this choice.

    “We chose Deathmatch as the mode for the demo as it’s very familiar to all FPS gamers and minimizes restrictions on players while they are getting to grips with the controls of each of the three playable species” said Jason Kingsley, CEO and co-founder of Rebellion. “We have plenty of new modes in the game and players only have to wait a matter of days before they can play them when the game launches.”

For advice on how to discern if you are playing on the old demo please visit http://www.sega.co.uk/news/?n=3939.

Aliens vs Predator is set for release on Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC Games For Windows on February 16th in America and February 19th in Europe.