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Opinion

Opinion: EA's new subscription model lacks definition

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Opinion: EA's new subscription model lacks definition

This morning, Electronic Arts unveiled EA Access, a program that will give gamers access to a selection of EA titles for a recurring monthly fee.

EA Access goes into beta on Xbox One today, and will come first to Microsoft's new console. The service will cost local gamers AU$6.99 a month, or AU$39.99 a year (New Zealand prices TBC). At launch, four full games will be available to subscribers: Peggle 2, Madden 25, FIFA 14, and Battlefield 4.

In addition, subscribers will be offered 10 percent discounts on upcoming releases, and the ability to trial game demos up to five days before they're released.

At a glance, EA Access appears to provide excellent value but EA has overlooked or is withholding a number of critical details that would help players to make a properly informed decision as to the real value of the package.

The most pertinent missing information is how and when games will be added to what EA calls "The Vault". As EA Access provides a 10 percent discount on upcoming games, it's safe to assume that new release games will not be added to The Vault until months after their launch. It's also unclear as to whether games - and access to them - will be removed from the Vault at a later date. The legal terms for the program give EA the right to remove games, but that will have to be exercised sparingly if the intention is to create a continually growing library. For consumers to have confidence, additional clarification is needed.

News

Dota 2 internationals attract 20 million viewers

Dota 2 internationals attract 20 million viewers

More than 20 million viewers from around the world tuned in to watch Valve's 2014 International Dota 2 Championship, the publisher has announced.

The 2014 event doubled its viewership over 2013, and concurrent viewers peaked at over 2 million, reports GamesIndustry.biz.

The event was aired on ESPN3, and Valve's Gabe Newell also appeared on ESPN2 to promote the Championship.

News

New-gen Shadow Warrior will contain an arena mode and new campaign content

New-gen Shadow Warrior will contain an arena mode and new campaign content

Shadow Warrior is coming to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on September 26, distributor Bandai Namco has announced.

The new-gen version of will feature extra content in the form of a new wave-based arena mode, as well as new campaign content featuring the head of the nefarious Zilla corporation.

It will also boast some extra weapons including the sledgehammer from Serious Sam 3, the katana from Hotline Miami, the 'Zilla Enterprises Z45 katana, and the classic Shadow Warrior katana.

News

The Last of Us live reading reveals epilogue that was removed from game

The Last of Us live reading reveals epilogue that was removed from game

An epilogue cut from The Last of Us was performed at yesterday’s live reading of the acclaimed game.

The Last of Us director Neil Druckmann said the scene is a goodbye to Joel and Ellie, and asked those in attendance to not record it as he didn’t want it released in any form.

According to posts on NeoGAF, the scene was set four years after the end of the game and took place at Tommy’s dam. Ellie is listening to music alone when Joel enters and chats with her about Tommy’s plan to get him to marry a woman named Esther. Ellie acts somewhat distant.

News

EA announces game subscription service for Xbox One

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EA announces game subscription service for Xbox One

EA has announced a new game subscription service that it says is coming to Xbox One soon.

An EA Access membership will give subscribers access to a selection of Xbox One games from EA via something called The Vault.

It will also grant members the opportunity to try new games five days before they release, and give them a 10 percent discount on EA digital download purchases.

News

Dishonored, Crimson Dragon headline August Games with Gold

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Dishonored, Crimson Dragon headline August Games with Gold

Microsoft has announced the Games with Gold line-up for August.

Topping the bill on Xbox One is Crimson Dragon.

Gameplanet scored Crimson Dragon 5/10, writing, "Rail shooters are often derided for their simplistic gameplay, but a good rail shooter can still be satisfying. All it takes is clear, punchy gameplay and good controls - but Crimson Dragon has neither. More than anything, the game feels unfinished, features and much-needed polish left by the wayside in favour of meeting the Xbox One’s launch date."

News

Bungie addresses concerns over the size of Destiny

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Bungie addresses concerns over the size of Destiny

Bungie has sought to reassure fans that Destiny will have plenty of content to play through when it releases on September 9.

Leaked data files indicate that Destiny will contain four areas: Earth, the Moon, Mars, and Venus. Each location will contain a single destination, meaning the Cosmodrome and the Tower are the only Earth locations so far.

In light of that, some players have expressed concern over the total size of Bungie's upcoming shooter. The beta, which appeared to include all the Cosmodrome content, could be completed in a few ponderous hours.

News

Assassin's Creed Unity will be three times as large as Black Flag

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Assassin's Creed Unity will be three times as large as Black Flag

Assassin's Creed Unity will be three times larger than than last year's Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag.

Unity is set during the French Revolution and features a single city, Paris. Even so, it will be at least three times larger than the entire combined land mass of Black Flag.

The information comes via a developer interview at San Diego Comic-Con. In the same interview, the developer, introduced only as Nick, and who identifies himself as a level design director, added that the core campaign will take 15-20 hours to complete. Together with side missions, there will be more than 100 hours of content, claimed the developer.

News

Virtual reality "kind of a step back, it's a fad" – Doom dev

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Virtual reality "kind of a step back, it's a fad" – Doom dev

Id co-founder and Doom developer John Romero says virtual reality won’t find mainstream acceptance because it’s too antisocial.

Speaking at the Strong Museum of Play (as reported by GamesIndustry), Romero said that he was blown away by the quality of the virtual reality (VR) headsets like the Oculus Rift, but that he didn’t see them catching on.

"VR is going away from the way games are being developed and pushed as they go back into multiplayer and social stuff,” he said.

News

Crytek addresses reports of financial difficulty

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Crytek addresses reports of financial difficulty

Crytek says a strategic shift was responsible for reports of its financial difficulties, and that extra funding has been secured that will see the studio prosper in the long term.

Over the past month there have been several rumours that the Ryse developer was in financial trouble, including a rumour that Ryse 2 had been scrapped, and another that Homefront: The Revolution game director Hasit Zala was one of 100 people that had left the project since March.

“Internally, we have acknowledged that the flow of information to employees has not been as good as it should have, however we hope you understand that communicating details of our plans publicly has not always been possible,” Crytek said in a statement to Games Industry.

Wednesday 30 July


Win The Last of Us Remastered on PS4
Competition
Win The Last of Us Remastered on PS4
Four copies to give away!
4
Dota 2 internationals attract 20 million viewers
News
Dota 2 internationals attract 20 million viewers
Seems eSports is here to stay.
Opinion: EA's new subscription model lacks definition
Opinion
Opinion: EA's new subscription model lacks definition
Access to limited information.
5
Dragon Age: Inquisition – Combat trailer
Trailer
Dragon Age: Inquisition – Combat trailer
Real-time and tactical combat presented.
Pure Pool – PS4 launch trailer
Trailer
Pure Pool – PS4 launch trailer
Rack 'em.
1
EA announces game subscription service for Xbox One
News
EA announces game subscription service for Xbox One
Pay a monthly fee for Vault access.
20

Tuesday 29 July


Bungie addresses concerns over the size of Destiny
News
Bungie addresses concerns over the size of Destiny
Beta was just "water wings".
5
Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty review
Review
Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty review
Ready and Abe-l.
8
Win a WildStar seven day trial
Competition
Win a WildStar seven day trial
200 keys need to be claimed!
9
Assassin's Creed Unity will be three times as large as Black Flag
News
Assassin's Creed Unity will be three times as large as Black Flag
With a main campaign of around 20 hours.
1
The Last of Us Remastered – When Joel Met Ellie trailer
Trailer
The Last of Us Remastered – When Joel Met Ellie trailer
Warning: spoilers!
The Last of Us Remastered – Photo Mode trailer
Trailer
The Last of Us Remastered – Photo Mode trailer
Can't wait for the #nofilter tags.
1
Crytek addresses reports of financial difficulty
News
Crytek addresses reports of financial difficulty
Transitional phase to blame.
2
Journey and The Unfinished Swan are coming to PS4
News
Journey and The Unfinished Swan are coming to PS4
The migration continues.
2

Monday 28 July


The Last of Us Remastered review
Review
The Last of Us Remastered review
Polishing a diamond.
12
Meet Hutama, leader of Polystralia in Civilization: Beyond Earth
Interview
Meet Hutama, leader of Polystralia in Civilization: Beyond Earth
An interview with the lead designers.
5
Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments gameplay trailer
Trailer
Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments gameplay trailer
20 minutes of spoiler-free gameplay.
1
Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham – Comic-Con 2014 trailer
Trailer
Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham – Comic-Con 2014 trailer
More from the best Lego franchise.
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor – The Bright Lord Story trailer
Trailer
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor – The Bright Lord Story trailer
Straight outta Comic-Con.
Tekken 7 – Comic-Con 2014 trailer
Trailer
Tekken 7 – Comic-Con 2014 trailer
EVO trailer, expanded.
The team at Gameplanet plays on Alienware.