First Gaming MP3 Player
Lavod Corporation, famous for high-class MP3 and video handhelds, will introduce its new PocketPlay series in Hannover, Germany at CeBit 2006. PocketPlay 320 and PocketPlay 350 offer 20 (320) / 10 (350) 8-bit Sega games, including classics like Sonic Chaos, Ecco The Dolphin, Sonic Spinball, Columns and Fantasy Zone.
Both models impress with a 2.4″ TFT Display, Micro Speaker and TV output, turning the handheld console into a TV console, using the included AV cable.
The premium model of PocketPlay 350 also offers MP3/WMA playing functionality and a SD Card slot, as well as a USB 2.0 port. Playing games and listening to music at the same time is a very unique feature. The built-in microphone uses the recording functions of the machine.
“Our PocketPlay products appeal to a younger audience and also to fans of gadgets and retro games, they are affordable for everyone and offer maximum fun for home or mobile entertainment,” says Daniel Liu, CEO.
Lavod will attend this year’s CeBit in Hannover and can be found in Hall 25, Booth E101. PocketPlay products will be available in April from various distributors in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria.
Xbox Live Gold Free Weekends Is Confirmed
Microsoft has officially announced that Free Xbox Live Gold Weekends will be held from March 31st through April 2nd, and will be sponsored by Verizon.
The company had previously confirmed that occasional free weekends of online play, usually available only to paying Gold members, would be given to the free-membership Silver subscribers for promotional and sponsorship-related reasons. These free weekends include extra competitions on Xbox Live Arcade leaderboard tournaments, Xbox Live play and contests.
Both Microsoft and Verizon are hosting the Verizon One Million Microsoft Points giveaway, which will give gamers who use Xbox Live a total of one million Xbox Live Microsoft Points to spend on Xbox Live Arcade titles, and also gives gamers a chance to win prizes.
Silver Xbox Live membership, free to all Xbox 360 owners with a broadband connection, allows users to browse the Xbox Live Marketplace and have their accomplishments and high scores recorded through virtual Gamercards. Only the Gold membership, available for a monthly subscription fee, lets users play online matches in supporting games.
“We think that providing gamers with exposure to this amazing service combination will change the way they view their Xbox 360 and gaming in general,” says Jerri Devard, senior vice president of national marketing and brand management for Verizon. “Verizon is proud to deliver the first-ever Free Xbox Live Gold Weekend.”
Important PS3 Announcement To Be “Very Big”
According to Next Gen, a video gaming news website, sources close to Sony say that the company will be making a “very big” announcement in the next two weeks. This announcement will possibly be on March 15th. What exactly this announcement is about is unclear, but it is highly likely that Sony will discuss the PS3’s launch date.
Zombie MMO Coming
Thinking Man Studios has revealed that it’s currently working on a new survival horror MMORPG that will let you plays as either a zombie, or a human. Exanimus (Latin for “without life”), is set in a post-apocalyptic world where few survivors are trying to stay alive as the living dead roam the Earth. “Expect to see half rotten corpses walking around and tearing apart the bodies of the living for food.”
There currently is not a release date, or even any screenshots, but we do know that this game will be on the PC.
Develop Industry Excellence Awards 2006 confirmed for July 12th 2006
The Develop Industry Excellence Awards, the premier celebration of European games development talent, will take place on Wednesday July 12th 2006 alongside the creative sector’s new conference and expo in Brighton, UK.
Now in their fourth year, the Develop Industry Excellence Awards are designed to recognize and celebrate the talent, innovation and imagination that goes into the creation of games and game technologies.
There will be 18 awards up for grabs, running across dedicated categories such as Most Improved Studio, New Console IP, Best Use of Online, Publishing Hero and Development Team of the Year.
“Our awards provide the only dedicated European recognition for everything from genuine innovators to service companies. The move to Brighton is a natural one and will enable us to create a bigger event whilst keeping costs down,” said Develop publisher and Intent Media boss Stuart Dinsey. “By tapping into the community already heading to Brighton for the conference and expo, we will have a more vibrant, fraternal atmosphere. It’s good to get out of London and do something different, especially in the middle of summer.”
Sex MMORPG Screens Released
Spend the Night, an adults-only MMO game designed to provide men and women with an environment where they can out their sexual fantasies, virtually of course, finally has some screenshots of game play that have been released. No release date has been confirmed for this game yet, but it will be coming out sometime this year.
An Amazing Sight
Takamasa Sumi has created an “Extreme-style console controller,” for the 3rd Fukuoka Asian Art Reinnale 2005 at the Fukuoka Asia Art Museum. The controller is 6.5 feet tall, 110 pounds, and 11 feet in length. The materials used were FRP, steel, Mazor color, Sega Saturn with light gun controller, TV monitor and “Death Crimson software”. The controller is meant to play Death Crimson, which is considered the worst game ever on the Sega Saturn console system.
Rampage Total Destruction Character Profiles Trailer
Rampage: Total Destruction is a 3-D update to the classic Midway arcade title, Rampage. See video of characters from the upcoming game. Total Destruction will be released on April 24th of this year, with the low price of $19.99.
This Week’s Releases
Game Boy Advanced
Let’s Ride Dreamer
Naruto: Ninja Council
Naruto: Clash of Ninja
Cloven Crania Meadow
Micro Machines v4
One Piece: Pirates Carnival
World Championship Poker: Featuring Howard Lederer All In
Age of Empires 3 expansion pack
Alfa Romeo Racing Italiano
Shadow Hearts: From the New World
Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai
Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams
Samurai Warriors: State of War
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter
College Hoops 2K6
Over G Fighters
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter
Titles Announced So Far This Week
Family Guy (PS2)
Micro Machines v4 (DS, PS2, PSP, PC)
Rockstar Games presents Table Tennis (Xbox 360)
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas (PC, current and next-gen consoles)