It’s that time of week again when we take a fond look back at the top five news stories from the week. Welcome to the Weekly Wrap-Up. Below is a brief summary, but for the full stories simply click on the hyperlink. Let us know if you agree with our top five. If you have suggestions for future Weekly Wrap-Ups, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sega has announced the Japanese release date for the PlayStation Vita version of Phantasy Star Online 2.The MMORPG will be released on February 28 as a free download from the PlayStation Network. The PS Vita version will share servers with the PC game, allowing cross-play. A closed beta for the PS Vita version has also been announced that will start med-January, 2013. Registration for the beta begins next month. Those interested can send their information via the PlayStation Network.
The studio head at Irrational, Ken Levine, has confirmed via Twitter that Bioshock Infinite will NOT include any multiplayer elements. Originally, many people believed that there would be multiplayer in the new game after a source reported to Kotaku that at least two multiplayer modes had been dropped due to “culture of mismanagement”.
A new bundle will be joining the PlayStation Vita family, but this one won’t be bundled with any games; at least, not in the usual sense. The PS Vita + PS Plus bundle, which will retail at $299, will come with a 3G/Wi-Fi PS Vita system, a 4 GB Memory Card, a voucher for the game Unit 13 and a full, 1-year subscription to PlayStation Plus. This, in turn, will give new owners access to the Instant Games Collection and titles like Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Gravity Rush and WipEout 2048.
Not doing too badly for itself this holiday season is Sony, who saw the PS3 sell 525,000 units and the Vita sell 160,000 in the US during the week of Black Friday (Nov 18 to 24). Sales for the PS3 including hardware and software increased by 9% from last year. In Latin America, the year-on-year sales rose by 200% for 2012. Sony noted that the Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation PS Vita bundle was a particularly hot item and saw Amazon sell out of the pack within 5 hours. The gaming giant mentioned that at stores, other Vita bundles such as Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes and Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified also sold out during the Black Friday week. The Xbox 360 was not slouch either. Acording to a blog post by Major Nelson, the Xbox 360 sold more than 750,000 units, far higher than was expected.
Another source has suggested that the Xbox 720, Next-Box, Durango or whatever you want to call it will launch next November. It makes sense to believe this as many believe Nintendo has started the “next generation” with its recently released Wii U console. The newest report comes from business site Bloomberg who also point out that the Xbox 360 has been on store shelves since 2005 making you realize a) How old we are. And b) the console would be eight years old if the next console does launch at the end of next year.
This week had a lot of big news and the news staff and I found it hard to narrow it down to the usual five stories. Here are some of the articles for the honorable mention section. Humble THQ Bundle Launches, Gives Birth To AMAZING Offer; Guillermo del Toro’s inSANE Finds New Developer; 3DS XL Owners In EU Being Offered FREE Retail Game From Nintendo; More Evidence Suggests Yoshi Will Flutter-Jump To Wii U; Square Enix: “Japanese Game Industry Is ‘Pushing Back”; Vita Titles Slashed in Price With Next PSN Update
If you missed out on the big news items this week, you can check out our weekly podcast and get an audio update of this week’s madness from our podcasting team. Listen to us as we talk about some things seriously and a few other things not so much. We guarantee this episode will make you shake your fist at times and nod your head at others. And finally, check out The Interview with Q, hosted by Matthew Quinlan.