Commander Fury gives us an Urgent Fury: DUST (Bravo 2 Deployment) SITREP, and then talks to AkilleezMight….Season 3 winner of The Tester!
I love baseball. I mean, I really, really love baseball.
As a kid growing up in Detroit, Michigan in the 70s, I remember loving the Tigers before loving just about anything else. Through the years, my passion for the game has only grown, and as a father, it’s been the source of great joy to share my love of America’s past time with my 10 year old son.
As it turns out, I had the privilege of coaching his Little League team a year or so ago. And one day before a game, he asked me, “Dad…why do you love baseball so much?”. As I struggled to give him a sufficient answer, I realized that it’s the sum of many different things that makes me love baseball so much.
The sights, the sounds, and even the smells of the game are what caused me to fall deeply in love with baseball. And to me, that’s really what baseball is. It’s more than just a game. It’s an amalgam of Geometry, Physics, history, culture, memories, or the anticipatory pause before every single pitch, that all come together to create this magical, uniquely American experience.
As a gamer, I’ve played almost every baseball game ever created. And while there have been a few franchises that have gotten close to capturing the “spirit” of the game, none have done so as aptly as Sony’s MLB: The Show franchise. Without question, MLB:The Show is the only baseball franchise to consistently hit it out of the park with each iteration.
And MLB 12: The Show is no exception.
It’s one thing to focus on the basic geometry & physics of the game. Which The Show executes masterfully. But, it’s another thing altogether to really focus on the little things that actually make baseball great.
For instance, if you play at Wrigley Field in Chicago, you’ll hear the el train going by during the game. Play an entire season as the Cubs and you’ll be able to watch Wrigley’s trademark ivy go from a dingy brown in April, to a lush green as the season winds down.
And it’s like that for each and every team & stadium.
Considered by many to be the most authentic baseball simulation available, Sony’s San Diego Studios continues to deliver an award winning take on America’s game.
This time around, they’ve combined the feel of the classic Zone Hitting interface with the Analog Hitting interface to get something called Zone Analog Batting.
You still use the Right Analog Stick for the stride & swing, but if you choose to, you can now control where you actually swing in the zone, by using the Left Analog Stick. It seems insignificant at first, but once you get the hang of it, it feels like you’re actually “steering” the ball like a real hitter.
While the Analog Pitching system remains virtually untouched, the Classic pitching interface has gotten an upgrade. MLB 12: The Show introduces a brand new pitching interface for the Classic Pitching Style, called Pulse Pitching. Players still pitch using a simple “X” button press, but now must time the press with an on-screen display, to ensure pitch accuracy.
But don’t freak out. If you prefer to just use the Classic Control System for either pitching or hitting, you can do that too.
MLB 12: The Show also introduces True Ball Physics. Again, it seems insignificant at first, but once you get into a game, you’ll notice that the baseball now acts & reacts more realistically than in previous installments. Using actual math, the ball will now behave like a real baseball, making hitting and fielding a bit more challenging.
Also making a return to The Show are Franchise Mode and the “fan favorite“, Road To The Show.
Franchise Mode is basically the same, with the exception of a few tweaks they’ve made to team logic. Teams will now make decisions including drafts and trades that make more sense for each specific team, depending largely on which market they happen to be in.
Similarly, Road To The Show has been tweaked to the point to where your progression feels more natural & balanced. Most noticeably, the reward / penalty ratio is more balanced, so you feel like you succeed almost as much as you fail. At-Bats also seem a little more forgiving than in previous versions of RTTS.
What may have been considered a Poor AB in MLB 11, may now be considered an OK AB in MLB 12: The Show.
It’s not really easier, just more balanced.
New to The Show, and maybe 2012’s biggest upgrade, is Diamond Dynasty.
Diamond Dynasty juggles aspects of team management, player progression, and online competition with more creative freedom than any other sports game to date. Gamers create a completely customizable team, with thousands of options that include, team name, team colors, custom uniforms, and customizable logos.
Once created, the team is given a handful of MLB baseball cards and Dynasty baseball cards that, when activated, add the players to your team’s roster.
The fundamentals of Diamond Dynasty revolve around the difference between MLB and Dynasty cards and the unique reward system that support each type.
A Dynasty player is a long-term investment that requires training similar to a Road To The Show player. While an MLB player is a short-term investment that is ready to slot into your roster ready to play at their current attribute levels.
Like real baseball cards, completing collections of MLB players will reward you with budget bonuses. Your budget is used to train players, purchase card packs (Dynasty or MLB), and purchase cards from other users on the marketplace.
Most of your budget is earned by playing ranked/matched head-to-head online games or vs. CPU against MLB teams. Every fifth game played, your custom team is re-evaluated for placement into one of five competitive divisions:
Spring Training, Season Series, Division Series, Championship Series, or World Series.
Clearly, Sony understands that baseball fans want an accurate simulation of baseball reality, and anything that detracts from that, can shatter the illusion of playing in, or watching, a real game.
MLB 12: The Show‘s TruBroadcast Presentation once again blurs the line between reality, and the in-game experience. If you didn’t know it was a video game, you’d swear it was an actual network broadcast, of an actual game.
Which, in my opinion, may just be the one thing that needs to be revamped in the entire franchise.
Don’t get me wrong, I like Vasgersian well enough, “Soup” is a baseball encyclopedia, and Karros is a former Cub, so he gets a free pass from me.
But, the fact that I can actually recite the booth dialog word for word, or predict the dialog in almost any scenario, is just unbearable at times.
In fact, I often turn it off “in-game“, which is disappointing in and of itself. Mainly because the booth dialog does add to the overall experience. For a franchise that has went to great lengths to create such an in-depth simulation, they seem to be neglecting what I think is an important aspect of the game.
Outside of that single criticism, it would be hard to find anything wrong with this game.
Overall, much like the real game of baseball, MLB 12: The Show is an amalgam of many different things, that all come together to make a great game.
And I guess that’s as it should be.
Story by: CritiKiL
No, NOT TODAY will you be getting your hands on this game. The highly anticipated PlayStation®Network title from Sony Online Entertainment (SOE), PAYDAY: The Heist, will be available for digital download for the PSN and PC systems later this month for $19.99 USD. So put your hockey masks and black suits back in the closet; Sony Online Entertainment has delayed its upcoming crime caper FPS, PayDay: The Heist, until later this month. Originally set for launch today, the downloadable title has been pushed back until “later this month” for further polish. In a press release, SOE made the announcement, stating that the delay “is a move to ensure players and fans of our promise and vision to produce high-caliber games that deliver the best quality game experience.”
This delay is a move to ensure players and fans of our promise and vision to produce high-caliber games that deliver the best quality game experience. Players who pre-ordered PAYDAY: The Heist will receive the game at launch, and those who purchased the four other PSN titles as part of the PlayStation®Network PLAY program will also be awarded PAYDAY: The Heist when it launches later this month, according to the terms of that program.
PAYDAY: The Heist is a squad-based, first-person shooter that allows players to take on the role of a hardened career criminal and engage in a number of high-risk heists. Players will rob banks, steal from drug dealers, pocket priceless diamonds, take hostages and hijack cars in a never-ending pursuit for criminal glory. To be successful in any true heist scenario, teamwork is essential to provide crewmembers with a sense of security and protection, and ultimately take home the loot.
Again, ‘later this month’ and at a price of $19.99 USD for Digital Download. PayDay: The Heist is a Windows PC and PlayStation 3 title and is sure to be an awesome game! Here are some Resources where you can find more info about this game. And don’t forget to check out the video of the game below, and leave us some comments on what you think about this soon to be released game!
Story by: CritiKiL
This video trailer for Saints Row®: The Third™ (below), caught my attention, mainly because it’s like a supped up GTA (Grand Theft Auto) on crank or something. So I thought I’d do a quick review, but you MUST see the video! The game sports an Online Co-Op, and a ton of new weapons, vehicles, tanks, guns an even the ‘V-TOL’ (Vertical Take Off & Landing Jet)…at your disposal. Did I mention the ‘Apoca-Fist’, and that it has ‘skydiving missions’? Yea, skydiving gunplay, total Mayhem and Fun.
HipHopGamer talks about Saints Row®: The Third™ demo, at E3:
“…was more than just jaw dropping, the gameplay details are over the top and easily surpasses the fun you will experience in GTA4.”
Saints Row®: The Third™ gives you control of the Saints at the height of their power, and you live the life to show for it. Take a tank skydiving, call in a satellite-targeted airstrike on a Mexican wrestling gang, and defend yourself against a highly-trained military force using only a sex toy in the most outlandish gameplay scenarios ever seen. Strap it on…and have some Fun!
Saints Row®: The Third™, exposes itself on November 18th 2011 for the PS3, XBox and PC. IGN gives it a 7.5 or 8 on the rating but I’m gonna come out of my neutrality as a writer, and go ahead and say that this game will run leaps and bounds over GTA: V whenever it does come out (no word yet as to GTV: 5’s release). IMO: I think it’s going to knock GTA: V out of it’s socks. Please comment, and let us know what you think about this upcoming game!
Watch the Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxQsCNontmI
More info on: http://www.saintsrow.com
The in-game XMB has been a jumbled, slow-loading mess since it’s launch. It needs to load faster (no more spinning circles), and have fewer useless icons (photos, videos, etc) for more efficiency. There was a voting-poll post made in the Playstation Blog a little over a year ago about this but has yet to be fixed.
One poster even offered:
“Anything that can’t be executed or viewed while playing a game should simply not be displayed on the in-game XMB. For example, if a game does not support custom soundtrack (playing your own music), don’t even show the music icon. Since you can’t play movies and games at the same time, hide that too, and so on.”
I recently posted my frustrations with this system in the Urgent Fury Forum and was pleased and shocked at the same time. Pleased, that others were experiencing the same problems, and Shocked because, ‘if all of us have been having the same problem for more than a year now…Why Hasn’t it been fixed?’ And this is not just a Regional issue, it’s happening to my friends and associates in Europe as well as other parts of the world. Just google ‘XMB Slow’ and you’ll see how many people have been complaining, with NO update to fix it. Leave your comments…
SONY REMOVES THE ABILITY TO INSTALL THIRD PARTY OPERATING SYSTEMS (SUCH AS LINUX) ON THE PS3.
WHILE MOST PLAYERS DON’T CARE (OR EVEN NOTICE). ANOTHER SEGMENT BECOMES EXTREMELY FRUSTRATED.
JANUARY 2ND 2011:
HACKER GEORGE HOTZ, A.K.A. GEOHOT, SUCCESSFULLY JAILBREAKS THE PS3….SO THAT IT COULD DO A NUMBER OF THINGS IT SHOULDN’T BE ABLE TO DO.
HOTZ THEN PUBLISHED THE PROCESS ON HIS WEBSITE, AND HIS YOUTUBE CHANNEL.
JANUARY 11TH 2011:
SONY SUES HOTZ FOR DISTRIBUTING JAILBREAK SOFTWARE TO THE PUBLIC.
CLAIMING THAT HOTZ IS HELPING PROMOTE PIRACY…BY ALLOWING ILLEGAL COPIES OF PS3 GAMES TO BE PLAYED ON JAILBROKEN SYSTEMS.
APRIL 2ND 2011:
A GROUP OF HACKERS KNOWN AS “ANONYMOUS“, BEGINS “OPERATION:SONY“….AN ATTEMPT TO DISRUPT SONY WEBSITES.
THE DEMAND IS…LEAVE HOTZ ALONE.
APRIL 11TH 2011:
SONY SETTLES WITH HOTZ.
DETAILS ARE SCARCE, BUT HOTZ AGREES TO TAKE DOWN HIS WEBSITE, AND INFO ON HOW TO JAILBREAK THE PS3.
APRIL 13TH 2011:
IN A CREEPY VIDEO MESSAGE, “ANONYMOUS” CALLS FOR A DAY OF SONY PROTEST…AND WARNS OF AN INCOMING ATTACK.
APRIL 16TH & 17TH 2011:
HACKERS DIGITALLY BREAK INTO THE PLAYSTATION NETWORK & SONY ONLINE ENTERTAINMENT.
THEY STEAL PERSONAL PSN & SOE USER INFORMATION.
ALONG WITH EUROPEAN SOE CREDIT & DEBIT CARD NUMBERS.
APRIL 19TH 2011:
SONY DETECTS A PSN BREACH.
AN INVESTIGATION STARTS, BUT THE PUBLIC ISN’T TOLD.
APRIL 20TH 2011:
SONY SHUTS DOWN THE PSN, CITING TECHNICAL ISSUES.
APRIL 22ND 2011:
AS PUBLIC UNREST BEGINS TO MOUNT ABOUT THE PSN BEING DOWN…”ANONYMOUS” RELEASES A STATEMENT DENYING ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE PSN OUTAGE.
APRIL 26TH 2011:
SONY ADMITS THAT THE PSN HAS BEEN HACKED, AND CALLS FOR FBI ASSISTANCE.
MAY 1ST 2011:
SONY EXECUTIVES APOLOGIZE FOR THE PSN DATA BREACH AND OUTAGE.
IN THE MEANTIME, SONY & INVESTIGATORS DISCOVER A SOE DATA BREACH, AND SHUT DOWN THE SOE SERVERS AS WELL.
MAY 2ND, 2011:
SONY REVEALS DETAILS ABOUT THE SOE DATA BREACH TO THE PUBLIC.
MAY 4TH, 2011:
SONY CHAIRMAN KAZ HIRAI TELLS CONGRESS INVESTIGATORS FOUND A FILE WITHIN THE PSN THAT WAS NAMED ‘ANONYMOUS‘, WHICH HAD THE GROUP’S MOTTO…”WE ARE LEGION”, ATTACHED.
ALTHOUGH SONY DOES NOT SPECIFICALLY ACCUSE ‘ANONYMOUS‘ OF THE INTRUSION…THE COMPANY CLAIMS THE PSN WAS MADE MORE VULNERABLE BY THE GROUP’S EARLIER ATTACK, POSSIBLY KEEPING SONY’S I.T. SECURITY BUSY…WHILE OTHER HACKERS SNUCK IN, AND STOLE DATA.
MAY 5TH, 2011:
‘ANONYMOUS‘ DENIES THAT IT HAD ANY PART IN THE CREDIT CARD THEFT.
THE GROUP SAYS THAT IT IS ONLY AFTER LARGE & CORRUPT CORPORATIONS & GOVERNMENTS.
ON THE SAME DAY…
SONY RELEASES A STATEMENT SAYING
IT IS IN THE FINAL STAGES OF TESTING IT’S NEW NETWORK,
AND THAT THE PSN WILL BE RETURNING IN THE COMING DAYS.
MAY 10TH 2011:
THE PLAYSTATION NETWORK & SONY ONLINE ENTERTAINMENT ARE STILL DOWN AS OF 2 AM, EASTERN STANDARD TIME.
Sony declines to testify before Congress as $1 billion lawsuit filed. (from MSNBC.com)
Like a character from their currently shut-down game “DC Universe Online,” Sony is under attack from all sides.
A U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee is demanding answers from Sony after private information from some 102 million personal accounts was taken by hackers.
In a letter written by the Congressional Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade and addressed to Sony chairman Kazuo Hirai, representatives asked the company to answer a list of 13 questions related to the hacking of Sony’s PlayStation Network.
The questions come as lawyers in Canada have announced they’re seeking a $1 billion class action lawsuit against the company which has recently revealed not one, but two massive hacking breaches that left personal information from 102 million gaming accounts available to hackers.
On Monday, Sony revealed that its Sony Online Entertainment PC gaming service had been hacked … this after revealing last week that the PlayStation Network service had been breached.
The SOE breach exposed the information from 24.6 million personal accounts as well as some credit card information from gamers who play the service’s online PC games such as “EverQuest,” “DC Universe Online” and “Free Realms.” The PlayStation Network, on the other hand, allows PlayStation 3 owners to game online and that breach exposed personal information from 77 million private accounts.
The Congressional committee has demanded answers about the PlayStation Network breach only perhaps because news of the Sony Online Entertainment breach wasn’t released until Monday afternoon. Among the questions they asked:
- “Why did you wait to notify your customers of the breach?
- “Have you identified how the breach occurred?”
- Have you identified the individual(s) responsible for the breach?
- “How many PlayStation Network account holders provided credit card information to Sony Computer Entertainment?”
(To read their entire letter, see the New York Times post here.)
The Committee’s letter demanded a reply from Sony by Friday, May 6, and explained that it had scheduled a hearing this Wednesday “regarding the threat of data theft to American consumers.” It invited Sony to attend and testify.
Too busy to appear
Sony, however, will not be attending tomorrow’s hearing.
Congress wants to know who breached Sony’s security. Certainly the mayhem these hacking attacks have caused is so extensive the Joker would be proud to take responsibility.
“Sony declined to testify because their internal investigation is still ongoing,” an official working for Representative Mary Bono Mack (R-California), told game blog Kotaku Tuesday morning.
But Sony has insisted it is cooperating with Congress. Sony of America spokesman Patrick Seybold sent a statement to Kotaku explaining:
“Sony is cooperating with the request for answers to the Committee’s questions, and in fact will be providing our responses in advance of the deadline. We informed the committee that we could not appear as early as this Wednesday because of our ongoing intensive investigation and management of this criminal cyberattack.”
In response to Sony’s decision not to attend the hearing, the committee has now moved the deadline for Sony to respond to questions to today, May 3, the New York Times reports.
Congress joins the attorney generals from more than 20 states who have already demanded answers from Sony. And the FBI’s cybecrimes unit has confirmed they are looking into the breach as well.
Meanwhile, as we reported this morning, Sony CEO Howard Stringer is under fire for his company’s handling of customers’ personal information and the hacking breaches, with some investors suggesting that he should step down.
Anger and lawsuits
But no doubt, the most heat is coming from gamers themselves.
The Toronto law firm McPhadden Samac Tuovi says it has filed a proposed class action against Sony “for the breach of privacy.” The lawsuit claims damages in excess of $1 billion, which includes having Sony pay the costs of credit monitoring services and fraud insurance coverage for two years.
The plaintiff in the action is 21-year-old avid PlayStation user Natasha Maksimovic.
“If you can’t trust a huge multi-national corporation like Sony to protect your private information, who can you trust,” Maksimovic said in a press release. “It appears to me that Sony focuses more on protecting its games than its PlayStation users.”
This lawsuit follows a lawsuit that’s already been filed in U.S. District Court accusing Sony of “negligence in data security.”
Meanwhile, as news of the second breach spread on Tuesday, many gamers responded with anger if not legal action.
“Frankly, during most of the time I’ve been a SOE customer, I’ve tried hard to ignore the feeling of constantly being treated like dirt…” wrote one gamer going by the name Faelan at online gaming site MMORPG.com. “I think I’ve given them more chances than they deserve and each time I’ve ended up feeling like the fool. No more I say. Goodbye SOE.”
“Sony is just another company that doesn’t care about its customers or its employees … and I think that’s why they were a target of the hackers,” wrote a gamer going by the name TheWillows on an “EverQuest” fan site.
But some Sony fans have responded with understanding and have said they will return to the company’s online gaming services when the servers finally go back online.
Whether it be a console system being hacked or a large business, no one wants their private information taken. Cloud computing security has risen in the aspect of online data security within the cloud. It is a good idea to talk to online security professionals and see what you can do to protect your self or business.
Wrote one “EverQuest” fan going by the name Kaifin, “I for one hope they recover because I have been happy with their products in the past. They were one of the big companies and got arrogant thinking it couldn’t happen to them and because of it they got screwed. Now they will be more careful in the future provided they survive this ordeal.”
For more on this topic, please see:
- Sony Online Entertainment hacked, some credit card info taken
- Sony sued, could bleed billions following PlayStation Network hack
- Games to play while PlayStation’s network is down
- How will Sony make amends to gamers?
- Former PlayStation hacker blames Sony arrogance for breach
Winda Benedetti writes about games for msnbc.com.
On this episode…we answer the call of duty, as we travel back in time to 1968, and the war torn jungles of Vietnam….to give you an Urgent Fury: In Country SITREP. Then Jack “UK” Dellhouse & William “Wolfie D” Murray stop by to explain how a home is not necessarily a house…or vice versa….as they give us the inside scoop on Urgent Frequency Television‘s recent launch on Sony’s PlayStation® Home.