Bethesda’s Hot New Shooter Brink Arrives in Level Up -

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Bethesda’s Hot New Shooter Brink Arrives in Level Up

More Cool Games from the Level Up Underground.

By Tim Janson     June 02, 2011

Bethesda’s Hot New Shooter Brink!
© Bethesda


As of this writing, the Playstation Store is still not available, missing the May 31st date originally targeted last week. It is now supposed to be up by the end of the week (unless you live in Japan, Hong Kong, or South Korea). "We have been conducting additional testing and further security verification of our commerce functions in order to bring the PlayStation Network completely back online so that our fans can again enjoy the first class entertainment experience they have come to love," said Kaz Hirai in a statement. "We appreciate the patience and support shown during this time." This all comes in the face of threats by a group of hackers called LulzSec who ominously stated, “This is the beginning of the end for Sony.”
While there’s not a large quantity of games on next week’s release slate, the releases we have are all top shelf games including infamous 2, Green Lantern: Rise of the Manhunters, and Red Faction Armageddon.
Shinobi Returns on 3DS
SEGA of America, Inc. has announced Shinobi exclusively for Nintendo 3DS. Developed by Griptonite Games, Shinobi is the long anticipated return of the fan favorite series and includes the classic side-scrolling action gameplay players have loved since the original. Coming to stores in September 2011, Shinobi introduces several exciting new features such as StreetPass and a large assortment of achievements and challenges to unlock.
“For years the fans have been asking for a new Shinobi,” said Gary Knight, Senior Vice President of Marketing of SEGA West. “With Shinobi on Nintendo 3DS we are able to answer their prayers and bring this legendary series to the next level.” Shinobi tells the story of Jiro Musashi, the leader of the Oboro clan and father of Joe Musashi, the hero of the first iterations of Shinobi. Players will become a true ninja legend by mastering a brand new combo system switching between melee, ranged and acrobatic attacks. They will also need to rely on Jiro’s ninja magic to get an advantage over their enemies and get out of tight spots. Shinobi will be released for Nintendo 3DS in September 2011.
Age of Empires Online Coming August 16
Age of Empires Online will be released on August 16. The free-to-play real-time strategy allows players to assume the role of either the Greeks or Egyptians and promises more than 40 hours of gameplay without ever dropping a dime on microtransactions. The game will be available through the official website and at retail. The latter option includes the exclusive Greek Pack containing the premium Greek civilization; Windy's Wild Widgets Store, a retail-only store; a hotkey reference guide; plus a poster and cards. Even if you buy it at retail, you'll still be downloading the game -- the front of the box labels it as a digital download which, besides being redundant, isn't a surprise given the game's online focus.
WWE Smackdown Vs. Raw Gets New Name
THQ announced that Smackdown vs. Raw will no longer be used as the name for their annual wrestling game series. The new name will be the somewhat pedestrian WWE '12, which will still be developed by Yuke's. Right-stick grappling is gone, moves can now be interrupted at any time and can be done anywhere in the ring, and both pins and submissions have been reworked. Animations depend on the weight of the character, so Daniel Bryan and the Big Show should be significantly different from one another. WWE '12 will be out in North America on November 22.
New Details for Assassin’s Creed Revelations
Ubisoft announced new product details for Assassin’s Creed® Revelations, the thrilling fourth installment in the critically acclaimed entertainment franchise that weaves real world history and global conspiracies into an ancient war between Assassins and Templars.
Assassin’s Creed Revelations follows master assassin Ezio Auditore as he walks in the footsteps of his legendary mentor, Altaïr, on a journey to recover five ancient seals that hold the keys to the future of the Assassins brotherhood. It is a perilous path – one that will take Ezio to Constantinople, the heart of the Ottoman Empire, where a growing army of Templars threatens to destabilize the region.
Assassin’s Creed Revelations is set to release on the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and Windows PC this November.
·            Hone the deadly art of assassination – As Ezio Auditore, wield the lethal skills of a wiser, more efficient assassin. Armed with a new arsenal of weapons and abilities including the hookblade, bomb crafting and a heightened Eagle Sense, you can kill with death-dealing proficiency.
·            Herald the return of a legend – Assassin’s Creed Revelations features the return of Altaïr as a playable character, the hero of the original Assassin’s Creed.
·            Journey to the Constantinople –Explore picturesque settings, from Masyaf, the mountain stronghold of the Assassins during the Third Crusade to the vibrant and exotic Constantinople, the jewel of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th Century. Navigate crowded streets and vistas, through a cauldron of cultures as Constantinople comes to life.
·            Meet new players to the Assassins Creed lore –Encounter memorable personalities, including fellow master assassin Yusuf Tazim, Prince Suleiman, destined to become one of the greatest monarchs in history, and Sofia Sorto, a simple woman who vies for Ezio’s heart.
·            Test your skills as an assassin against your friends – the acclaimed online multiplayer experience returns, refined and expanded with more modes, more enthralling maps and new characters

New Screen Shots from Shadows of the Damned
Just got in a couple of new screenshots from the upcoming psychological thriller from EA Games and Grasshopper Manufacture, Shadows of the Damned. The game is set to release in less than a month on June 21st!

Brink Shadows of the Damned infamous Rockus

Brink Shadows of the Damned infamous Rockus

SEGA announces House of the Dead: Overkill Extended Cut
SEGA of America, has announced that mutant-massacring B-movie blood fest, The House of the Dead: OVERKILL - Extended Cut is presented for the first time in full HD with 3D support and PlayStation Move compatibility on the PlayStation 3. This gruesome shooter puts you in the middle of a mutant outbreak in Bayou County. With all seven stages of the original re-mastered and two brand new scenarios added, the ‘baddest’ just got bigger!
 Using a host of weapons, watch your back as mutants go mad for blood! Blast bloody pieces out of their wretched bodies to save you and a friend’s life as you work to uncover the mystery behind the outbreak. New goodies like PlayStation trophies, new game modes and new content are outnumbered by only one thing: Bullets. Will you defeat everything this freakish nightmare town throws at you or will you become mutant chowder?
“The House of the Dead: OVERKILL – Extended Cut for the PlayStation 3 system will send players to the shrieking mad heart of mutant mayhem. This time we went further, faster and bloodier than before. We extended everything, even the title.” – Said Gary Knight of SEGA. Experience 3D so real, you’ll still be crying late into the night and Move support so moving, you’ll place every shot right between the eyes! The House of the Dead: OVERKILL - Extended Cut is due for release October 25 in the United States for PlayStation Move for the PlayStation 3.
Atari Releases new DLC for Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime
As a follow up to the first ever Ghostbusters digital title Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime, Atari is releasing additional downloadable content - Challenge Pack. In conjunction with Sony Pictures Consumer Products, Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime Challenge Pack will bring hours of a new single player experience to the successful digital title with two game modes, Lonely Hero and Arcade Challenge, on Xbox LIVE and Windows PC. Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime is a four player, ghost-busting adventure that will take players on a brand new paranormal experience. But with Challenge Pack, players will suit up with their proton packs and assume the role of a lone rookie Ghostbuster tasked to save New York City from a disaster of ghoulish proportions, without any help. 
Arcade Challenge: Designed for seasoned gamers, Aracade Challenge gives players a limited number of lives to see how their skills line up on a distinct Global Leaderboard. Players run through 5 of the game’s most challenging levels in single player mode and once the lives are up, the game is over. Player scores are automatically posted to a new real-time Leaderboard.
Lonely Hero: Players can select any level they have unlocked and start from there but this time you are on your own - no co-op, no friendly teammates- just one player to combat the waves of the paranormally possessed.
Disney Universe Coming This Fall
Disney Interactive Studios revealed this week an all-new game shipping this fall, Disney Universe! The game mixes up for the first time characters and worlds inspired by both animated and live action films from Disney’s Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, and Walt Disney Pictures. Disney Universe is a fast-paced multiplayer action-adventure game for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii and Windows PC/MAC.
inFamous 2 (Sony) Rated T PS3
infamous 2 is a single player, Open World game, exclusive to PlayStation 3. The second chapter in the best selling infamous franchise, this immersive adventure offers a powerful, emotional, and visceral take on being a superhero, and the choices that involves. Features include: a unique blend of electrical and melee combat abilities, epic boss battles, a new morality system allowing for two possible game endings, user generated missions and more.
Cole MacGrath is back, more confident and with more focused energy burst abilities. Blamed for the destruction of Empire City, Cole must make a dramatic journey to discover his full super-powered potential - and face the final confrontation with a dark and terrifying enemy. This being, a creature of pure power and destruction is annihilating the East Coast. To stop this menace, Cole must find the key to unlocking his undiscovered powers hidden deep within New Marais. Standing in the way is a power-hungry dictator that will stop at nothing to rid him from the city. Gain enough power to defeat The Beast or witness the destruction of the world. The power is in your hands.

Brink Shadows of the Damned infamous Rockus

Like its predecessor, infamous 2 is a single player Action-Adventure game set in an Open World game environment. Players take on the role of Cole, the returning anti-hero from the first game. Possessing electric burst abilities through his hands Cole has matured a bit as a superhero type, being more confident and focused in his abilities. He uses these abilities, as well as improved melee possibilities to battle enemies both large and small in mission-based gameplay. Along with combat, choice remains a big part of the game, with an improved morality system that allows for two separate endings to the game, depending on the choices that Cole makes.
Red Faction Armageddon (THQ) Rated M Xbox 360. PS3, PC
Red Faction: Armageddon places you in the role of Darius Mason, a man born of Colonist and Marauder blood, who must save mankind from an unspeakable evil that has resurfaced. In the latest installment of the Red Faction franchise, you must travel across the storm-blasted Red Planet — and below the surface as you take up arms against a terrifying new force that threatens the sake of mankind. Will you be able uphold your family's tradition of fighting for the freedom of Mars to protect the settlements against this mysterious lethal force?

Brink Shadows of the Damned infamous Rockus

It has been more than 50 years since the Red Faction resistance and the Marauder allies liberated the Red Planet from the brutal Earth Defense Force — however, that harmony is once again threatened. A massive Terraformer that supplies Mars with its Earth-like air and water has been destroyed, causing the once-balanced atmosphere to transform to chaos. The Colonists have been forced to flee underground and begin their lives beneath the surface. Darius Mason, the grandson of Martian Revolution heroes Alec Mason and Samanya, runs a dangerous, yet lucrative business carrying out jobs that others fear to do. When Darius is tricked into entering an old Marauder temple, he reopens a mysterious shaft — releasing a long-sleeping evil that unleashes Armageddon across Mars. Only Darius and the Red Faction can protect the Colonist and Marauder settlements and save mankind from the evil that envelops the Red Planet.
Green Lantern: Rise of the Manhunters (Warner Bros) Rated T Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, PS3, Nintendo Wii
The Manhunters are an android race, originally created by the Guardians of the Universe to serve as the first interstellar police force. The Manhunters became more obsessed with administering punishment than serving justice, forcing the Guardians to dissolve their ranks. The few Manhunters that survived fled into exile and the Guardians founded a new elite police force called the Green Lantern Corps and armed its memebers with specially crafted power rings. Now the Manhunters are back and out for revenge, readying their forces for a war against the Guardians and the Green Lantern Corps. Faced with destruction, the Corps is looking to you as the newest recruit, gifted but cocky test pilot Hal Jordon, to protect peace and preserve justice. Building on the anticipation of Warner Bros.' feature film Green Lantern, in theaters June 17, 2011, Green Lantern: Rise of the Manhunters includes the likeness and voice talent of Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, who is the star of the upcoming motion picture.
Operation Flashpoint: Red River (THQ) Rated M Xbox 360, PS3
Between Afghanistan and China, the world's next flashpoint is about to erupt. The valleys, towns and mountains of Tajikistan will become bloody frontlines for the might of the People's Liberation Army, insurgent guerilla fighters and the United States Marine Corps.
·         You and your fireteam can make a difference.  How much is up to you.  It's not the soldier with the most expensive gun or the biggest heart who wins on the battlefield.  It's the smartest.  Semper Fi, Marine.
·         Go closer to the experience of the US Marines on campaign with the ultimate tactical infantry shooter. Stand together with 4 player drop-in drop-out online co-op multiplayer in campaign mode and standalone Fire Team Engagements
·         Become immersed in an engrossing narrative which unfolds over three acts in campaign mode. Play as Grenadier, Scout, Rifleman and Automatic Rifleman classes, each with unique strengths and weaknesses for increased replayability
·         Earn and spend XP on weapons, attachments and abilities for each of the fireteam's specialists
·         Call in Combat Support such as Mortars, Howitzers and JDAMs, whilst AH-1Z Helicopters and A-10 Ground Attack Aircraft provide Close Air Support
Brink (Bethesda) Rated T Playstation 3
You can never fault a game developer for trying to be ambitious even if they are not fully successful. Such is the case with Brink, developed by Splash Damage. What’s aggravating about Brink is that the potential was there for a truly outstanding, top of the line first person shooter, but it feels like a game that was a bit rushed to get out giving it some inconsistencies and technical issues that keeps it from achieving greatness. The first-person shooter focuses on multi-player gaming and parkour style movement that results in a fresh approach to the FPS genre.
Brink is set in a near-future world where thousands live on a floating city called the Ark. Once an ideal Utopian setting, stragglers have resulted in the Ark being expanded, essentially adding slums to house the ever-increasing population. At the start of the game you’re asked to choose a side. You can choose to fight as Ark Security, trying to maintain order against rebels, or choose to fight as a rebel looking to escape the oppressive government. There’s no good or evil as such, more a matter of perspective. Once you choose a side you then create and customize your character from one of four classes: Soldier, Medic, Engineer, and Operative. From there you have a fairly extensive amount of options to customize your character’s look…or at least you WILL have eventually. Most of the options are locked at the beginning and have to be unlocked to truly customize your character. Strangely, all players begin with a medium body type but later can unlock large or small body types. Each has their unique traits but it seems strange to be able to change your body type in mid-game. The customization is one of the strongest aspects of the game and going through the different classes does help to keep the game interesting. 
Before jumping into the game you have the option of going through extensive tutorials that explains the games finer points. Brink stresses team play, even if you elect to play the solo game. The mission-based levels present primary and secondary objectives for you to achieve. In solo mode your AI-based teammates will provide a reasonably intelligent level of support including healing you if you are hurt but it still can’t compare to playing with live players. If you choose to play your missions online you’ll have other players working with you with the AI filling in any unused spots. 
In game play feature Parkour style movement and holding down a button will allow you to smoothly negotiate any obstacles you encounter making for some truly flashy moves. But these work (and look) best when utilizing a light body type which are quicker and naturally more agile. This looks especially cool when you run and slide into enemies, taking them out and then getting to your feet quickly to blast another. Yet as fun as it is, graphical issues can make it frustrating in trying to judge certain movements.
While level design is fun, there’s only 8 maps so there’s just not enough variety here to keep players coming back for more and hopefully this is quickly addressed with updates. Add to that the fact that objectives are the same per level and while Brink gets off to a fast start, it bogs down into repetitive play before you can max out your character. Oddly, even though you’ve selected a certain side to play in the conflict, when you actually choose your level you have the option of playing either side…so what’s the point of choosing a side? 
Brink is made for online play and it frankly beats the hell out of playing vs. the computer. If online play isn’t your bag then likely Brink isn’t for you. But online play has been fraught with its own perils of laggy gameplay, which Splash Damage has addressed with an update. While not a great game, Brink has offered some unique elements that are merely in need of some polishing. Clean that up, and offer a bit more variety, and Brink could find a place among the elite of the first-person shooters. Grade B-

Rockus 3D Speaker System (Antec)
If you truly want to upgrade your videogaming experience to cinematic quality then you need a good set of speakers. Look no further than the Rockus 3D Speaker System from Antec. This system creates a true home theater experience with a high fidelity audio system and Soundscience’s 3D technology. In the box you get a pair of 25 watt satellite speakers, a 100 watt subwoofer, control pod, and wires for your speakers and RCA inputs.
The system can be used with your television for gaming system. If you have an optical cable you can hook it directly to your Playstation 3 or Xbox 360 or similar device.. I hooked mine up to my switch box, allowing me to have it in use for my PS3, DVD player, and TV. The controller lets you pick between three distinct modes. Music mode gives you incredible depth and clarity for all your favorite music or TV and gaming. If you truly want to create a theater experience, switch over to 3D. Antec's proprietary 3Dsst technology truly hits you with a wall of sound from big, booming base to sharp highs and mids. The optical setting is for use with the optical input although you need to provide your own cable. 

Brink Shadows of the Damned infamous Rockus

The satellite speakers are made from Anodized aluminum that reduces vibration for rich sound at any volume. The system features special 3D drivers designed for optimal audio quality. Hookup is a snap…15 minutes is about all it might take (more if you need to really get behind your entertainment rig) to unpack and get these babies wired up. The design of the speakers is slick and they’re made facing up at angle to bounce the sound off walls of any room. Putting its paces through several games and blu-ray movies the performed impeccably and are as good if not superior to surround sound systems that cost twice as much. All you need is some popcorn and a drink and you’ll feel like you are in a theater. Games are just as great with the Rockus speakers…explosions, gunfire, dialog, are all clean and crisp and nothing gets lost. Volume is handled through the control pod, turning the top dial to increase/decrease volume. Pushing down on the dial mutes the sound. 
Only one thing keeps me from giving this a perfect grade, and that is that the wiring is all a bit too short, limiting speaker placement. Certainly you could easily add on longer wire for the speakers but the controller pod is also too short, only about 4’ or so. It would have been so much better if the controller was wireless. Simply put though, for $200 you might not be able to find a better performing speaker system. Grade A-


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jedibanner 6/2/2011 8:01:30 AM

Those speakers looks great but I got myself a great headset of speakers for gaming and the sound is just awsome...I'm hearing sounds I didn't even know were there on COD:Blac is the greatest thing to play on.



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