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Video Game News from December 2007

Filed Under: Video Game Business

I've been so busy writing the LB Mass Effect Walkthrough that I haven't had a chance to point out this story to you.

Jeff Gertsmann, until recently the editorial director at GameSpot, was fired for a not-so-kind review of Eidos' Kane and Lynch, or at least that's what most people are speculating.

If you need to do some catching up, Joystiq has it covered well here, here, and here.

What's most interesting to me is that this is bringing out the long held notion that game reviewers are under pressure to write favorable reviews for games so that the game companies will then advertise (or continue to advertise) on/in said reviewers site/magazine.

While it's still unclear what really happened the fallout from this story is far more important than any truth. The notion of biased game reviewers is instilled in gaming culture and this story, fact or fiction, only serves to perpetuate that notion.

It then goes further and brings in a giant parent company, CNet, who perhaps undeservedly so, is being cast as the evil villain squashing the independent, gamer-centric reviews of Gertsmann for the all-important advertising dollars.

I'll continue to keep my eye on this story as it is one of those situations where the perceived notions are, most likeyly, worse than reality, but that simply doesn't matter.

Posted by Jeremy on December 4, 2007 9:08 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: Xbox | Xbox 360

2K Games has today announced the release of new downloadable content for both Xbox 360 and PC versions of BioShock. The content includes new Plasmids and Tonics, achievements and interface upgrades.

Four Plasmids and Gene Tonics:
  • Sonic Boom: Hurls creatures and objects back with a blast of force
  • EVE saver: Enables Plasmids to use less EVE
  • Vending Expert: Reduces prices in the vending machines
  • Machine Buster: Increases the amount of damage players deal to cameras, bots and turrets

Achievements (exclusive to Xbox 360):
  • Xbox 360 players can gain 100 points for “Brass Balls,” by beating BioShock on the “hard” difficulty setting without dying

2K has also added a widescreen option that offers a wider horizontal fiend of vision, as well as "additional enhancements to the game".

This new downloadable content is available for free via the Xbox Live Marketplace, through an Xbox 360 Title Update, and as part of a PC patch.


LB BioShock Walkthrough and Strategy Guide

Posted by Lunabean on December 4, 2007 11:01 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: LB Videos

Nothing says "Merry Christmas" like a huge tree with an electronic Pac-Man display, like this one found in the heart of Madrid, Spain.

Posted by Lunabean on December 7, 2007 11:25 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: LB Videos | PS3 | Sony | Xbox | Xbox 360

It's been out for a couple of days now, and I'm just posting it now. What of it? Well, here you go:

1) It's the holidays and we've been extremely busy publishing walkthroughs (our Super Mario Galaxy Game Guide is the latest).

2) I'm still bitter with Rockstar for postponing the release. Seeing a new trailer serves only as a bitter reminder that this title should be resting happily in my "done" pile.

3) Honestly, I'm not too impressed with the trailer. There is no gameplay, and there's only so much thuggish storyline I can care about without actually getting my hands dirty.

With that being said, here's the new trailer. Enjoy...if you can!

Posted by Lunabean on December 7, 2007 11:55 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: Nintendo | Nintendo Wii

Is your Wii glowing blue this morning? That's because Nintendo has officially launched Wii Gifting, which allows you to gift games purchased from the Wii Shop channel. Use the new Gift button in the Wii Shop channel to send a game to anyone on your Wii Friends Roster. You can even personalize it by sending a Mii and a short message.

Details from Nintendo

Posted by Lunabean on December 11, 2007 9:09 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: LB Videos

Today Joystiq is reporting that game publisher Gamecock has apologized for its staffers running up on stage with lead BioShock developer Ken Levine who was accepting the VGA for BioShock as Game of the Year. Yadda, yadda. Apology accepted, who cares, right?

The reason I'm posting this is because of the accompanying video. I just had to show it for all to see, so you could experience the bad taste Spike's VGAs leave in every gamer's mouth who isn't a 15 year old boy (my apologies to 15 year old boys who are also annoyed with this).

Seriously, they painted the winners of each category on the bodies of naked women? And, seriously, adults who work for a game publisher thought it would be funny to storm the stage? I guess showing the slightest bit of class when dealing with what we love is out of the question, eh? Gawd, I hate the VGAs.

Posted by Lunabean on December 11, 2007 9:40 AM | | Comments (0)

Yes, it's been complete for awhile now, but, I forgot to post about it. So, here's the blurb in all of it's glory.

Lunabean's Unofficial Super Mario Galaxy Walkthrough and Strategy Guide (Nintendo Wii) is the most complete guide available for this latest Mario adventure. Other guides simply tell you about the 120 Stars. We explain, in detail, how to collect them.

Whether you're dueling Bowser, collecting Purple Coins, looking for Luigi, feeding a Luma, or simply trying to reach the closest Power Star, this is the guide for you!

LB Guide: Super Mario Galaxy Walkthrough and Strategy Guide

For our 100% complete guide, please purchase one of the following:

LB Super Mario Galaxy Game Guide:
Download now - $5.95 | More info

Get the LunaPass:
All Lunabean Guides for only $14.95!

Posted by Lunabean on December 11, 2007 10:06 AM | | Comments (1)

The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) yesterday released a study titled, Politically Determined Entertainment Ratings and How to Avoid Them.

The authors conclude that the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) provides the most comprehensive and useful ratings of any major media ratings system. While I agree with this, I have to wonder if it's a predetermined conclusion based upon the fact that the ESRB is the least regulated ratings system.

The CEI, afterall, "is a non-profit public policy organization dedicated to advancing the principles of free enterprise and limited government."

To further this suspicion of mine, the CEI sets up a supposed "apples to apples" comparison between the ESRB and radio saying:

On the other hand, in the radio market, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) imposes vague but sweeping content guidelines over almost all broadcasts. The threat of FCC-imposed fines has done nothing to give parents greater control over their children’s radio listening habits—they have virtually no way to protect their children from adult material like explicitly sexual “shock jocks” and violent hip-hop lyrics. Heavy regulation and the absence of a private ratings system have made radio worse for parenting.

More on this...

Continue reading "CEI rates ESRB the best...but why the report?"
Posted by Jeremy on December 12, 2007 9:20 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: Nintendo | Nintendo Wii

Here's a little story that's being relayed by a few media outlets with less than stellar accuracy ratings (FoxNews and The Daily Telegraph, I'm looking at you). The headline goes a little something like this: "Dad sells 'Guitar Hero 3' for $9000 after catching son smoking pot". Is that eye catching, or what?

The articles go on to explain that a father opted to sell the only thing his son wanted for Christmas, Guitar Hero III for the Wii, after catching his son smoking pot in his backyard. Then, lo and behold, a product that sells for $90 retail sold for $9000 on eBay.

Now, a journalist, or a person with any sense of reason whatsoever, would ask themselves, "Why would this be"? Sure, the Wii version of the game is fairly hard to find, but $9000? Does that make any sense...at all? Of course it doesn't. And, had FoxNews even looked at the link it provided to the auction they would see in the comments that the seller was seeking attention with the story of his pot smoking child, and fully expected the auction to blow up:

The auction will finish at an absurdly high price due to uncontrolled bidding, and the high bidder will be a newly registered user who with no intention of paying.. Several bidders seem to have registered just to bid on this auction. I am fully expecting the bidding to skyrocket near the end of the auction. There are nearly 400 people watching the auction. Instead of canceling bids, we have decided on something else. If the seemingly LIKELY situation of a non-paying bidder winning the auction is realized, that will be the end of it. I will not beg or plea someone to pay, nor will I give out second chance offers. My son will get the guitar hero game.

So, there you have it. What we have is another obvious case of fake bidding on an eBay item. It didn't take long to research. Sadly, it didn't take long to travel to my local FoxNews affiliate, who is also reporting on the story. Interestingly, there's been no mention of the filibuster of the FISA bill that gives telecomms retroactive immunity. Probably too much for them to wrap their brains around...

Posted by Lunabean on December 17, 2007 11:14 AM | | Comments (4)

Filed Under: Nintendo | Nintendo Wii

Last week Nintendo and Gamestop announced an agreement to sell rain checks for the Nintendo Wii which would guarantee the holder of said rain check a Wii by the end of January.

Well get your galoshes ready because you can get a Wii rain check tomorrow and Friday, the 20th and 21st of December (although my local Gamestop says they won't do it until Friday).

If you are looking for a Wii for that special someone (you) for Christmas my advice is to get the rain check at Gamestop and then go hunting. If you don't find a Wii, well at least you have the rain check. If you do find a Wii you can get a full refund for your rain check (again, according to my local Gamestop...you'll want to double check when you buy it).

As always, let your fingers do the walking. Call around see who has what. Your best bet is Sunday morning. Good luck!

Chicago Tribune on the topic

Posted by Jeremy on December 19, 2007 11:44 AM | | Comments (0)

Filed Under: General Gaming

It's been over 10 years since 3D Realms announced Duke Nukem Forever. So long ago, in fact, that when it was announced, I couldn't legally drink!

The teaser was made by some 3D Realms employees to surprise the other employees at their Christmas party. Management thought the teaser so great that they went ahead and released it to the world. Thanks, I guess.

For a little history on the game, and everything that has happened in the game-o-sphere/world since, you should check out this break down.

For the 2001 official trailer (a mere 6 years ago), go here. You know, that would've been a great game in '01 and they could've put out another one by now!

Posted by Jeremy on December 20, 2007 9:21 AM | | Comments (0)

Besides the egg nog, Grandma's candied yams, and useless stocking stuffers (seriously, do I really need another go-pack of reindeer Kleenex?), the Holidays mean one thing: Gaming!

With so many new games (and new gamers) out there you're bound to get stuck. Don't fret! We have you covered with over 150 Video Game Walkthroughs and Strategy Guides.

From the latest:

To recent classics:

Of course, you can get INSTANT ACCESS to ALL of these Walkthroughs plus over 150 more by subscribing to the LunaPass.

It makes for the perfect last minute gift to your gamer friend or family member!

Happy Holidays!

Posted by Jeremy on December 21, 2007 1:24 PM | | Comments (0)

We are pleased to announce the completion of a saga, a LEGO Star Wars saga, that is.

Lunabean's Unofficial LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga Walkthrough and Strategy Guide (Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, PS3) is the most complete guide available for this latest version of the LEGO Star Wars franchise.

  • 100% Completion Game Guide!
  • Detailed Walkthrough for all 36 Missions!
  • ALL Mini-Kit Canisters!
  • ALL Blue Canisters!
  • ALL Red Bricks!
  • ALL Gold Bricks!
  • Bounty Hunter Missions covered!
  • Instant Digital Download!
  • Professionally written!

Download LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga Walkthrough Now!

LB LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga Game Guide

Download Now with the LunaPass - $4.95 | More Info

Posted by Lunabean on December 22, 2007 4:50 PM | | Comments (4)

Filed Under: General Gaming | Nintendo | PS3

Hey, look at that box shaped like a PS3 box! Is that the present I've been asking for? I think I'll rip it open. Yay!!! Thanks for the PS3 mom and dad! *opens box*

WTF, yo! It's a friggin phone book!

Yes, this actually happened to a California teen. The parents are working with EB Games to replace the phone book.

You can watch the news report here.

Posted by Jeremy on December 28, 2007 9:44 AM | | Comments (1)

Filed Under: Video Game Business

CNN is reporting that the Hollywood writers' strike could mean good things for the games industry.

Of course, the article is essentially speculating that the lack of good TV could mean that people will put down their remotes and pick up a controller. There is no real data to support this, but it does make some sense.

I think that all alternate forms of entertainment will do well due to the strike. Video rentals are sure to go up. Movie going may also see a spike (plus there are a ton of good movies out there right now). It would only follow that video games would also benefit.

Read the article.

Posted by Jeremy on December 30, 2007 10:47 AM | | Comments (0)

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