Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Jedi Business

Hello, and welcome to the first of our new series, running on a loosely biannual basis, taking a look forwards at all the awesome stuff happening in a galaxy far, far away.

STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC

Things are looking hotter and hotter for this MMORPG set nearly 4,000 years before the events of the movies. Although details are still relatively scarce at the moment, the general vibe seems to be that this will be more storyline focused than most other online games, as Lucasfilm feel this is both the main strength of Star Wars, and something that is missing from most MMORPGs.

Confirmed playable species are Chiss, Human, Miraluka, Mirialan, Rattatki, Sith, Twi’lek and Zabrak. Some interesting choices there – most are not known outside of the Expanded Universe.

Two books are being released to accompany and hype-up the game, Fatal Alliance (out now in the US, but no UK release date available at this time) and Deceived (22nd March 2011). There is also a webcomic Threat of Peace
running online .

The game is scheduled to go live in Spring 2011.




THE FORCE UNLEASHED II

Yes, the original ended pretty conclusively, but where there’s money to be made and a willingness to accept any retcon/feeble excuse they feed us, The Force Unleashed is getting a sequel.

After Starkiller's death aboard the first Death Star, Darth Vader attempts to bring him back by taking his body to Kamino to have him cloned – supposedly seeking to create the perfect Sith Warrior. Galen “Starkiller” Marek is once again trained under Vader, being told that he is one of the many attempts to clone his original self, and that all the others had gone insane, leading the clone to doubt his mental stability. But when he experiences a vision showing Vader betraying his ORIGINAL self, he finally chooses to escape Kamino by stealing Vader's TIE Fighter and begins to experience memories of a life he does not remember living.

Vader hires the infamous bounty hunter Boba Fett to track down Juno Eclipse, predicting Marek will follow.

The general buzz is that all of the original gripes about this game – particularly the camera and controls – have been totally fixed, and there are several new styles of lightsaber combat and Force Powers to play around with.

The book will lead the charge on 5th October, the comic following on the 6th, and the video game finally hitting shelves on 26th October.

FATE OF THE JEDI

The highly-popular Fate of the Jedi series continues with Vortex on 7th December, Conviction on 17th May and Ascension set for this time next year.

HAND OF JUDGMENT

Possibly the most loved of all the Star Wars authors, Timothy Zahn returns in July 2011 with Hand of Judgment, the sequel to his 2007 novel, Allegiance. All the key characters and Mara Jade are confirmed as appearing.

RED HARVEST

Joe Schreiber returns with Red Harvest on 28th December (why do they insist on releasing their novels after Christmas?). The prequel to his horror-heavy novel Death Troopers, set around 4,000 years earlier, it promises to deal with the origin of the terrible virus that infected the Purge.

KNIGHT ERRANT

As Legacy draws to a close – followed by its one-off six-part mini-series WarKnight Errant replaces it in the comic line-up.

Set one thousand years before Episode I, in a time referred to as the "Dark Age of the Republic," this story takes place in an era when the Sith were legion and the Republic was strained to the breaking point, leaving large swaths of the galaxy with no one to turn to. This pivotal time in the history of Star Wars has been largely unexplored, until now.

Additionally, for the first time ever, the writer of this new comics series will also be authoring a novel, set in the same era and involving the same cast of characters in an all-new adventure. This will be the first time that Star Wars novels and comics have directly crossed over in this manner.

DARK HORSE GOES MENTAL

2011 marks the 20th anniversary of Star Wars comics being published by Dark Horse, and to celebrate, they have announced that there will be eight new series released that year. Most have yet to be revealed, but Haden Blackman is confirmed to be writing a Darth Vader series. "It chronicles one of Vader's greatest failures ever," Dark Horse said.

Eight new series? That’s a lot of comics...let’s hope this isn’t a case of over-saturation.
Words: Brad Harmer

KANE & LYNCH 2: DOG DAYS

Here we see the depth of Kane and Lynch’s partnership and see exactly how well they get on when they’re shooting other people in the face. Nice.

Co-op is looking to be one of the best features of the game...now there's just the little matter of deciding which murderous psychopath to play...



Introduced to the world in 2007, Kane and Lynch quickly became recognized as video gaming's two most notorious criminals. United by circumstance and held together by a fringe relationship, the two men find themselves needing the help of the other, in hopes to erase the past to a life they are desperately trying to rewrite. It’s been some time since the two have spoke and it seems one thing remains constant – they make the wrong choice in trying to do the right thing.
BEN 10 ULTIMATE ALIEN: COSMIC DESTRUCTION

D3Publisher is “Going Hero” in true Ben 10 style to announce the forthcoming launch of the ultimate game for Ben 10 fans, Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction, coming to the UK and Australia on six platforms this October 2010, distributed by Namco Bandai Games.

The latest in the multi-million selling global Ben 10 video game franchise, Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction from D3Publisher and Cartoon Network Enterprises puts players in the shoes of 16-year-old Ben Tennyson and 16 devastatingly powerful alien forms. Together they embark on a thrill packed mission to the four corners of the globe on the hunt for an ancient alien artifact that could save humanity from a mysterious cosmic storm and ultimate destruction.

Based on Cartoon Network’s all-new new television series, Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction lets players wield the power of the all-new Ultimatrix, the strongest Omnitrix to date, to transform Ben into more powerful, hyper-evolved ultimate alien forms and experience action packed battles in a string of brand new locations. The video game will be available for the Xbox 360, Wii, PS3, PS2, DS, and PSP.

The game introduces new alien heroes Armodrillo, WaterHazard, AmpFibian, Terraspin and NRG from the Ben 10: Ultimate Alien television series, allowing players to tunnel through enemies, unleash water blasts, emit radiation beams and more, while a unique experience system lets them upgrade alien abilities. The game features all-new enhancements such as Quick Switch, to switch alien forms faster than ever, and Quick Time Events for a cinematic experience that guides players through fierce boss battles and challenging puzzles. PS3 and Xbox 360 owners will receive their own exclusive aliens, with the quick and fiery Rath for Xbox 360 and the immensely strong Fourarms for PS3.

More information can be found at http://www.ben10thevideogame.com/.

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