Sony Online Ent. (SOE) is teaming up with Sir Richard Branson and Deepak Chopra's Virgin Comics to bring the India-based RAMAYAN 3392 A.D. comicbook universe to PCs via an MMO videogame.
Sierra Ent. announced development of THE SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES, a videogame based on the upcoming 2008 theatrical release of the same name by Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Films. The game, which will recreate the fantastical world of the film and bestselling book series, is in development at Stormfront Studios and will be available for Xbox 360, Wii, PlayStation 2, Nintendo DS and PC in February 2008.
The Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy (FIEA), a graduate videogame development program, is debuting its latest student game, MASTER PLAN, at SIGGRAPH 2007 in booth #243 in San Diego.
MASTER PLAN is a 3D action game where players construct their own doomsday machine to ravage a city. MASTER PLAN was developed by 34 students and has features never seen before in a student-produced game. Students developed all the tools and pipelines from scratch, including a world editor, vehicle editor with tutorial and fully destructible city environment.
Luxology LLC has launched Luxology TV, a new online hub that allows the 3D community to exchange and view high-resolution video clips on Luxology's website. Luxology TV enables anyone to enhance their 3D learning experience by searching, selecting and immediately watching videos on a variety of subjects, such as modeling, rendering, painting and sculpting.
Warner Bros. Interactive Ent.will launch the SPEED RACER videogame based on the upcoming film written and directed by the Wachowski brothers. The game will be available in 2008 on the Wii and Nintendo DS systems as the SPEED RACER film hits theaters. It will be released on the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system with the DVD launch.
In its second quarter report, Marvel Ent. announced the production of a new animated direct-to-DVD feature entitled HULK SMASH. No plot details were announced, but it will be released via Lionsgate in Oct. 2008.
PULP FICTION co-writer Roger Avary has been tapped by producer Samuel Hadida to pen and direct an adaptation of ID Software's videogame, RETURN TO CASTLE WOLFENSTEIN, according to VARIETY.
Set during World War II, the plot of the game centers on a team of U.S. army rangers, lead by B.J. Blazkowicz, that are assigned the mission to infiltrate Castle Wolfenstein and gather information on the Nazis' SS Paranormal Division.
Take Two announced that the release of GRAND THEFT AUTO IV has been moved from Oct. 2007 to March or April of 2008, VARIETY reports. Take Two chairman Strauss Zelnick stated technical issues were to blame for the delay.
The move caused the company to revise its fiscal year estimate from $1.25 billion to $950 million-$1 billion. Previously, the company believed it would break even for the year, but now anticipates a loss of up to $1.35 per share. The disappointing news lead investors to drop Take Two stock, creating a 19% fall in its pricetag.
The fourth season of the Emmy Award-winning original animated broadband series, OFF-MIKES, produced by Animax Ent., has just launched on ESPN.com.
The Walt Disney Co. reports an improved profits of $1.2 billion, a 4.7% gain, on revenues of $9 billion, for the third quarter and nine months ended June 30, 2007, a 6.7% rise on the same period last year. The company credited strong TV program sales and higher theme park attendance for the gain.
Operating income in its Media Networks group jumped 23% to $1.358 billion.
REALVIZ will be showcasing its latest technological advancements at SIGGRAPH 2007 in San Diego (booth 1629) from Aug. 7-9.
The REALVIZ team will demonstrate the REALVIZ HDR Imaging Studio, unveiled in June, and REALVIZ Movimento, a state-of-the-art video-based motion-capture solution, which debuted at SIGGRAPH 2006.
Artists and visual effects supervisors Ed Jones and Mark Breakspear of Rainmaker Ent. Inc. have joined the //ADAPT Conference lineup at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Montreal from Sept. 24-28, 2007. An estimated 2,500 people from around the world are expected to attend the industry's second annual creative event focused on inspiring and teaching advanced digital art production techniques for film, visual effects and videogame development. The program includes more than 40 digital art masters, an Art Expo, a Theatre, a Job Fair and much more.
Kabillion, the new multi-platform kids' program service, will launch a new preschool-focused block of programming, Kabillion Jr., on Aug. 1, 2007. Kabillion Jr. will offer animated programming for kids 2-5 on both Kabillion On-Demand (on Comcast Cable systems nationwide) and Kabillion's broadband site, www.Kabillion.com.
Debut programming offered on Kabillion Jr. includes the 3D CGI-animated DIVE OLLY DIVE! and the animated series based on everyone's favorite dolphin and his young human friend, FLIPPER & LOPAKA. Shows will be added to the schedule in the coming months.
JoeCartoon, who was recently acquired by Endemol USA, announced the re-launch of its new 'humor portal' JoeCartoon.com. The revamped website offers an enhanced user-friendly interface.
Aardman Animations is expanding its content lineup on mobile. The content will be added to operator 3's ad-supported video service, which is operated by Rhythm NewMedia. Aardman has been successful in this arena with ANGRY KID, which, at its peak, sold more than 10,000 video clips a day over mobile networks. Aardman will be adding onto the ad-supported video service clips from CREATURE COMFORTS, A TOWN CALLED PANIC, PURPLE and BROWN AND MORPH.
WebbliWorld Ltd. commissioned Aardman Animations and Enable Interactive to design and develop www.webbliworld.com, a fun, interactive and engaging virtual world for children. The website features animated films starring new characters, as well as interactive games and adventures, and a fun, whimsical world for children to explore.
In an effort to pick up some ground on next-gen leader Nintendo, Microsoft will reduce the price of its Xbox 360 by $50 on Aug. 8, 2007, sources told THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. At this time it is unclear if the price cut will effect all three versions of the system. The core model currently sells for $299, while the pro model is $399 and the elite model is $479.
Ubisoft announced that it will develop and publish the videogame based on 20th Century Fox's AVATAR, the upcoming feature film written and directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker James Cameron.
AVATAR is the story of an ex-Marine who finds himself thrust into hostilities on an alien planet filled with exotic life forms. As an Avatar, a human mind in an alien body, he finds himself torn between two worlds, in a desperate fight for his own survival and that of the indigenous people.
WizKids Inc. will produce the DISNEY'S PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN POCKETMODEL game, to be released in October 2007.
WizKids will be able to use content from all three PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN movies. The PocketModel game platform allows players to construct 3D pirate ships from pieces punched out of a styrene card. Players then use movie characters and action scenes on cards to help control the strategy of the game.
An Iranian student group recently unveiled a new videogame that simulates an attempt to rescue two Iranian nuclear experts kidnapped by the U.S. military and then held in Iraq and Israel, reports various news agencies.
The RESCUE THE NUKE SCIENTIST videogame, designed by the Union of Students Islamic Assoc., is a response to a U.S.-based company's ASSAULT ON IRAN game (Kuma Reality Games), which depicts an American attack on an Iranian nuclear facility, says its creators.
Ghostlight has announced the release of DECATHLETES for the Nintendo DS and Sony PSP in spring 2008. Ghostlight has confirmed that development duties will be handled by The Code Monkeys, the studio behind games, such as SHREK TREASURE HUNT and CHARLOTTE'S WEB.
Adrian Hirst, development director at Code Monkeys, said, "Our goal is to create a highly realistic athletics simulator whilst maintaining a compelling pick up and play game style akin to titles, such as TRACK AND FIELD and DALEY THOMPSON'S DECATHLON."
BOXX Technologies announced that open voting has now begun on in its Road to Nirvana Visual Effects Student Contest . In an effort to reinforce its commitment to the community visual effects artists, BOXX teamed with the Gnomon School of Visual Effects to highlight the work of student artists who are pushing the limits of visual effects.
Electronic Arts Inc. announced THE SIMPSONS: MINUTES TO MELTDOWN, an original game developed exclusively for mobile phones starring the world's favorite animated family. Created in conjunction with Fox Mobile Ent. and Gracie Films, MINUTES TO MELTDOWN takes mobile gamers on a fast-paced, action-packed adventure through Springfield. The game, which features Homer and a colorful cast of Springfieldians, can now be downloaded directly from major wireless carriers in North America and Europe and on the web via Jamster (www.jamster.com).
THQ's first videogame title based on the popular Nickelodeon TV series, AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER, has reached a major retail milestone as Sony Computer Ent. America's "Greatest Hits" status for the PlayStation 2 and is now available at retailers throughout North America for the suggested retail price of $19.99. AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER made its videogame debut in October 2006 and finished the year as THQ's top-selling Nick property.
Ubisoft, one of the world's largest videogame publishers, announced that on July 12, 2007 it sold the 13,367,923 shares it owned in Gameloft (representing 18.89% of the company's capital) to Calyon, Credit Agricole Group's Corporate and Investment Bank. The sale price was 6.08 euros, based on Gameloft's closing share price on July 12, 2007.