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Ubisoft has done a good job—arguably great—at supporting Nintendo's Wii U platform so far. However, as the sales are slipping, Ubisoft is finding that the Wii U's delivery message is a hard one to understand. Whereas Wii was easy to understand and use upon seeing it, the Wii U with its GamePad must simply be played to be understood. Xavier Poix, managing director of Ubisoft's Annecy, Montpellier, and Paris studios, had this to say about the Wii U:

"The depth of what you can do with that console is really hard to get across unless you play with it," Poix said. "It's different from the Wii, where seeing was believing. With the Wii U, people really need to experience it."

He has much more to say about the future of the Wii U after the jump.


That's right folks. The juggernaut new IP Skylanders is getting a new entry this fall. The franchise has made over $500 million dollars already, and Activision is showing no sign of stopping anytime soon.

The last entry in the series brought new giant protagonists to the formula, and this time, Vicarious Visions is switching up the cast of critters—literally. Players can choose to mix-and-match the torso and legs of the Skylanders, allowing dozens of combinations in the game. There are sixteen new figures, but through the new addition to the franchise, 256 "swapabilities" can be achieved. Each power is represented by half of the figure, so players can choose which two elements they want to combine and utilize in the new world of the Cloudbreak Islands.

I'm not surprised to see this series become an annual affair, as the franchise makes a lot of money. I might just have to hop onto the bandwagon for this new entry, as I've heard the Skylanders are a guilty pleasure among many gamers. Head past the jump for a boatload of screenshots!

Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli has announced that their Vigil Games derived USA studio will cease development of Darksiders 3. In a recent interview with GamesBeat, Yerli revealed why Crytek was hesitant in bidding on Vigil during THQ's property auction, and how the new addition to the Darksiders franchise wouldn't fit their strategy. Hit the jump to read more...

Nintendo's bold leap into the HD era is here, and we've seen some stunning displays of graphical prowess from its new console, the Wii U. While games such as Nintendo Land have been remarkable for Nintendo's standards and games such as ZombiU show us that the console is capable of the same visual fidelity as the current consoles from Nintendo's competitors, word has it that this is just the beginning. According to President Satoru Iwata, the games that we've seen so far, including unreleased titles like the gorgeous Pikmin 3, stand at the lower end of the console's capabilities. For Iwata's full quote and what it means for the situation, head past the jump.

According to Emily Rogers, Retro Studios will have a demo ready for its next big project during E3. It's still unclear what this project might be, but it could very well be sequel to Donkey Kong Country Returns, or another installment of the Metroid series. Retro also collaborated with Nintendo on the development of Mario Kart 7, and since it was a very well received game, it might very well be that they are also working on the upcoming Mario Kart U.

Personally, I'm all in for a Donkey Kong sequel, but I'd like it to be a platformer like Donkey Kong 64. I think it has a lot of potential, and I just love Donkey Kong 64. It was one of the games that defined my childhood, so a spiritual sequel to it would be great. I'd be really surprised to see a brand new IP, but time will tell.

Sniper Elite V2, a unique shooter by Rebellion, is being ported to the Wii U. It's already on the PS3, 360, and PC, and though it's received mediocre reviews so far, Rebellion is hoping that the Wii U's gamepad is going to revitalize the potential of the title.

“Sniper Elite is just the kind of mature game that is perfect for the different mechanics of the Wii U. It’s been a challenge to get it right, but thanks to our team and the fantastic support of our partners at 505 Games we believe we’ve brought the unique gameplay to a whole new platform.”

So says Jason Kingsley, CEO of Rebellion. Have any of you had some time with Sniper Elite V2? Do you think the Wii U's actually a good remedy for this struggling game?

This is impressive. Remember that Nintendo Direct from weeks back? It was pretty cool. We saw a lot of awesome games and clips, one of them being a video behind the scenes of Bayonetta 2's development. With all the buzz around the exclusive acquisition of this decidedly mature series, Platinum was eager to show just how well the transition to a Nintendo console was going. The video ended with this shot of a monster slashing right at us, scaring those weak of heart.

Well, it turns out that clip wasn't computer generated; that's right, those are the real time graphics of Bayonetta 2--at this point in time, anyway. Who knows what it'll look like at launch! Somehow I'm getting even more hyped over this game. I really have to grab the original Bayonetta to prepare myself.

A Picture of the Wii U and GamePadThe negative sentiment towards the Wii U from certain parts of the industry may never cease, but this time around, Digital Foundary's analysts are able to back up their claims due to the recent discoveries that show the exact build of the Wii U's GPU. While there are still some mysteries in the customly built chip, what we needed to know for its maximum capabilities is now understood. Hop inside to see exactly what the conclusion is that leads them to state rather plainly the Wii U isn't next-gen.

AckkStudios has been working for a while on their GameBoy-styled RPG, Two Brothers. Two Brothers, the story of an inventor seeking to bring color to a monochromatic world, is coming some time this year to the Wii U eShop, alongside iOS, Xbox 360, and several other platforms. Two Brothers is nearing completion, however, and as all developers do, AckkStudios is planning to begin work—or resume it, rather—on a brand new game codenamed Project Y2K. AckkStudios began work on the game before Two Brothers' development had even begun, and it was put on hold in order to finish the smaller, retro-styled project.

Project Y2K is a 3D RPG in development exclusively for the Wii U. The story, which has now been completely finalized, takes place in the year 1999, beginning on January first at exactly 12:02 AM. Project Y2K also has a completed graphics and gameplay engine, which you can get a glimpse of to the left, as well as plenty of concept art. In addition to all this information, the original blog post and its teasers contain hashtags such as "#Space," "#Fourth Dimension," "#Double Slit Experiment," and "#WomanMadeofPlastic." Another teaser also shows off a demo of the game's soundtrack, with the caption, "viewing Earth from far away..."

I don't know what exactly this is shaping up to be, but I know that like it. What do you think of all this?

The console development process never stops. Even before the Wii U was released, the minds over at Nintendo were already spinning about what they wanted to do next, both for home consoles and handhelds. During a recent Nintendo shareholder's meeting, Iwata had this to say on the development:

"Last year we also started a project to integrate the architecture for our future platforms. What we mean by integrating platforms is not integrating handhelds devices and home consoles to make only one machine. What we are aiming at is to integrate the architecture to form a common basis for software development so that we can make software assets more transferrable, and operating systems and their build-in applications more portable, regardless of form factor or performance of each platform. They will also work to avoid software line-up shortages or software development delays which tend to happen just after the launch of new hardware. Some time ago it was technologically impossible to have the same architecture for handheld devices and home consoles and what we did was therefore reasonable. Although it has not been long since we began to integrate the architecture and this will have no short-term result, we believe that it will provide a great benefit to our platform business in the long run."

Basically, Nintendo is planning to make it easier to share assets between future handheld and console games, which would vastly expedite the development process of certain cross-platform series such as New Super Mario Bros. Nintendo is hoping that this system will prevent the "droughts" of content that the Wii U and 3DS have experienced.

How would you like to see this system implemented?

With all the doom and gloom surrounding analysts' take on the low sales of the Wii U, it's easy to get angry at analysts or even worried for Nintendo's future. I, for one, think all the Wii U needs is an increased advertising push and a slew of terrific content, and we already know we'll see the latter later this year. But in the wake of the professionals treating the Wii U's situation like the Vita's was, Rob Fahey of GamesIndustry has published an article forecasting Nintendo's bright future with the console.

"Nintendo has a lot of work to do on Wii U, but we’ve been here before – it had a lot of work to do on the 3DS as well. While 3DS’ price cut helped a great deal, much of the real work was done through significantly improving and bulking out the console’s software line-up, and a similar process is underway with Wii U. One need only look to the rapt response which the recent Nintendo Direct broadcast received from media and Nintendo fans alike to see the truth of Nintendo’s situation. This is a software company at heart. Its consoles are enabling hardware for its software, and as such, they sell in parallel with major software launches. Of course, this is a valid argument in favour of Nintendo’s ultimate destiny outside the hardware market entirely, but for now, the company isn’t willing to give up that level of control – and for now, it doesn’t look like it needs to. I don’t expect Wii U to match the success of Wii, in the medium or long term – but equally, I don’t count myself among those who expect it to be Nintendo’s last console. Sentiment is negative right now, but fundamentals aren’t, and for a business like Nintendo, it’s the latter that counts."

For the full article, click here. Are you in the same boat as Rob and myself, or do you think that Nintendo needs to take more drastic measures to lock in the future success of the Wii U?

The rumor train just keeps rolling! According to Clever Noob user TSA_383, patch 1.05 is set to radically shift the Mass Effect formula.

TSA_383 claims to have found data in the patch to back up the following description of the new "Reckoning" DLC:

"The day of reckoning is nigh! The Reckoning Multiplayer Expansion brings six new never before seen co-op story missions to the game and new co-op gameplay modes. It provides four new maps to conquer and hazard variations of the Earth maps. It also enables reinforcement packs that offer new kits for the salarians, krogans, humans and volus. In-game reinforcement packs now include three new weapons (Chakram Launcher, Blood Pack Punisher and Adas Anti-Synthetic Rifle)."

So far, this leak has gotten no official confirmation or denial from BioWare, so I make no claims that this rumor is valid; however, if it does turn out true, then gamers everywhere will be able to cooperatively play a few story missions with friends and family. I'm a big fan of co-op gaming, so I'm hoping that this ends up being true.

What do you think of this rumor? True? Fake? Amazing?

JP Mangalindan, the writer for CNN Money known for having the most kickass name ever, just wrote a short piece on the Wii U's struggle after launch. It's pretty insightful, critical in a fair way, and makes some good points. He starts by saying that the issue isn't with the system itself; he got some hands-on time with it and was very impressed. However, he knows business, and thinks he's figured out how to help turn sales around for the big N.

Jump inside to see what he said.

Nintendo has so many iconic franchises, it’s ridiculous. Out of the big three companies, only Nintendo has unique franchises that are hitting their 25th anniversary. The Ratchet and Clanks, Jak and Daxters, and Sly Coopers of the PS2 era were phenomenal while they lasted, but eventually waned in popularity or just ceased being made altogether. Somehow, Mario, Link, and even Fox McCloud with his rather small staple of games have managed to stay relevant to gamers and maintain enormous fanbases. For a game series to survive decades, it has to evolve with the times, right?

I’d like to think that the secret to Nintendo’s success has been adaptability. However, looking back, It's hard to accept that as truth.

More after the jump.

Shigeru Miyamoto, the legend behind Mario, Zelda, Pikmin, and more, has admitted that "it takes time to understand the charm" of Nintendo's latest console, the Wii U. Personally, I saw right away what the console was capable of and the new experiences it brought to the table, as I'm sure many others did. But the larger audience still sees the Wii U and thinks it's nothing but a Wii with an iPad slapped on.

“It takes time to understand the charm of Wii U. We are currently offering a few titles but we are aiming for games that sell steadily for the next three years, not for games that stop selling after a few weeks. We have a lot of ideas for two-screen play. We definitely need more employees internally and externally so we are strengthening our development teams.”

This has certainly proven to be the case, as well. After expanding Retro Studios and merging their two hardware development teams, it seems Nintendo is ready to take gaming in a new direction and expand their company into new territory. Only after developing tons of triple-A games from several different genres that all sell well years after their launch, will consumers from all areas of the gaming industry recognize the true potential of Wii U