With no "Splinter Cell" or "Metal Gear Solid" in sight, sexy femme fatale-starring "Velvet Assassin" from German developer Replay Studios is one of few new stealth games, and while a near-final demo shown to us had some of the most impressive lighting we've ever seen, often clueless A.I. gave us pause.
"Velvet Assassin" -- Stealth Action / Xbox 360, PC / March 2009 / Gamecock
The lead developer behind "Mushroom Men" tells me about the opportunities and the setbacks of making Wii games for a hardcore crowd -- and takes a shot at "Deadly Creatures." Read More...
* BlizzCon coverage highlights: VP of game design Rob Pardo talked about how the economy won't affect "WoW," and that they're still searching for a "Diablo III" art director. He also gave us a video tour of Blizzard's swanky offices.
* "StarCraft II" producer Chris Sigaty explained why the game is now a trilogy; fans on the show floor reacted.
* "Diablo III" designer Jay Wilson told me why they went with "Wizard" instead of "Mage."
* "WoW" game director Jeff Kaplan hinted at a console MMO and talked about being blocked from the "Warhammer Online" beta. (Mythic responded.)
* Stephen pulled together the latest Wii software stats to see what people have been playing. ("Smash Bros." anyone?)
* We learned that "LittleBigPlanet" is being delayed due to some music featuring lines from the Qu'ran. Developer Media Molecule offered their apologies for the delay.
* We got the 411 from Harmonix on "Rock Band 2" for the Wii.
* Patrick spoke with Bethesda about the issue of software pirates, and what we can expect for "Fallout 3." Are you embarrassed about pirating video games? Why or why not? Many of you shared your thoughts.
* Want to go to L.A. and be a guest blogger for MTV Multiplayer? Here's how.
Gamecock is not longer an independent publisher. SouthPeak Interactive acquired them yesterday.
What does this mean for the future of Gamecock? Earlier this month, Gamecock CEO Mike Wilson described their first year as a company as "rough."
MTV Multiplayer e-mailed questions to SouthPeak CEO Melanie Mroz to find out if the Gamecock brand is dead, what role Wilson will have at SouthPeak, if this is a sign that Gamecock's style of independent gaming was a failure and more.
Read on to find out what Mroz had to say.
Last week, daily Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun (via Yahoo! Japan) reported that the Japanese Association of Psychiatric Hospitals has asked Gamecock Media Group's Japanese distributor Interchannel to pull DS game "Dementium: The Ward" from store shelves.
Released in Japan in June, "Dementium" is survival horror first-person shooter with a plot that has the protagonist in a dilapidated hospital filled with gruesome surgical experiments.
From the translated Yahoo! story, it seems that the organization was concerned that the game might "encourage discrimination and prejudice" against those with psychiatric disorders.
We contacted Gamecock CEO Mike Wilson about the association's request to yank the selling of "Dementium" in Japan. He said to MTV Multiplayer in an e-mail:
"Gamecock's position is that this story, like many before it, boils down to a lack of understanding or appreciation (and therefore fear of) games outside our little sub-culture. I'm sure the people involved have only the best intentions. The co-publisher/distributor for the game in Japan, Interchannel, will deal with the situation appropriately. In the meantime, we're thrilled that this quick bout of paranoia has brought so much attention to our first lovechild with Renegade Kid... The game is groundbreaking on the platform and it deserves the attention and success it is seeing."
"Dementium: The Ward" was released last October in North America and is still available in stores now.
Gamecock CEO Explains How Publisher Will Improve On 'Rough' First Year
Gamecock Media Group is one of those names you see a lot in the gaming press but aren't quite sure what they actually do.
You've probably heard about the Austin-based company when they held a funeral for E3 in 2007. Or when its employees rushed the stage at the 2007 Spike Video Game Awards during Ken Levine's acceptance speech. Or maybe you remember its CEO's candidacy for president of the Entertainment Software Association earlier this year.
But perhaps what you haven't heard is that they also publish games. Formed in 2007, the company put out "Dementium: The Ward" on DS and "Fury," a now defunct PvP-based MMO. This year, they've published "Insecticide," "Stronghold Crusader Extreme," "Hail to the Chimp," and "Pirates vs. Ninjas Dodgeball." And before the end of 2008, they'll release FPS "Legendary" and hyped action-adventure title "Mushroom Men."
I recently spoke with CEO Mike Wilson, not about the publisher's antics, but about how the company is doing.
Here is his candid summary of the company's first year: Read More...
When Red Fly Studio and Gamecock approached Les Claypool to contribute original music to the upcoming Wii title "Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars," the Primus frontman wasn't quite sure he was into it.
But his kids were, according to "Mushroom Men" producer Chad Barron, who stopped by MTV earlier today to show me the game. After the Claypool children learned what the fungi-laden platformer was all about, they urged their doubtful dad to take on the project. In fact, after playing "Mushroom Men" for the past few months, they love the game and even made their own drawings for it. Above are two pieces of artwork drawn by Cage and Lena Claypool.
And to be clear, Barron told me that there are no cats or bloody weapons in the E-rated game, though he'll consider them for use in future Red Fly titles.
You can check out "Mushroom Men: Rise of the Fungi" on DS in October and "Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars" on Wii in November.
'Mushroom Men' Aiming For Most Interesting Audio On The Wii
I've Seen 'Mushroom Men''s Hidden Fungi Civil War
When I heard about the politically-themed party game "Hail To The Chimp" last year, I was told it was for fans of "The Colbert Report."
In other words, "Hail to the Chimp" is for me. By hiring writers from political comedy mainstays "The Daily Show" and The Onion to pen the game, Mike Wilson, CEO of the game's publisher Gamecock Media, said, "We're specifically going after people who follow politics and find it funny... Only ours is funnier."
But is "Hail To The Chimp" funnier than the "The Colbert Report"? The satirical, late-night talk show features charismatic host Stephen Colbert and his deadpan comedy, wry wit and astute political observations. I watch it every night it's on. And I laugh. A lot.
I took Wilson's words as a challenge. So I conducted an experiment where I measured the laughs I had during the game and the popular TV show. And the "truthiness" may surprise you...
This week, "GTA IV" finally came out. We tore ourselves away from the game to give you extensive coverage. Check it out:
* From the soundtrack to underage players to hooker shootings to the price of gas, view all of our "GTA IV" stories here or here.
* Patrick Klepek reported that Matt Damon passed on "The Bourne Conspiracy" game due to its violence as well as other games over the years.
* We revealed that "Fatal Inertia EX" will hit PSN next month.
* Our resident Nintendo fanboy Jason Cipriano wrote Nintendo a letter about his issues with "Mario Kart Wii."
* Nintendo President Satoru Iwata responded to Microsoft's proposed motion controller that we broke last month.
* We got pictures of a horse covered in ping pong balls for the "Age of Conan" mo-cap shoot.
* The pole dancing Wii game is for fitness (of course) and for both men and women alike.
* "Tecmo Bowl" is coming to the DS but without Bo Jackson and the NFL.
* Stephen Totilo looked at the most graphically impressive PS3 game so far.
* Which bird is better? Chocobos and "Zelda" Chickens take the top prize in our year-long search for the Greatest Animal in Video Games.