Motorola Razr Cuts New Angle For Smartphones

Motorola Mobility recently announced that they were bringing back the Razr brand with the Droid Razr. Recalling the popular flip phone from several years ago, the thin smartphone will run on the Verizon 4G LTE network and carry a $299.99 price tag.

“This brand has a lot of recognition,” said Alain Mutricy, Motorola portfolio and product management senior vice president. “Because of what this brand means in the minds of consumers, we decided to relaunch it.”

Source: WSJ

Epic’s Blezsinzki Wants ‘Realistic CG’ For Next-Gen

What exactly the next-generation of games will look like is currently up in the air, given that they’re at least a couple years worth of technology advancements away. However, there’s a graphical water-mark that Epic’s Cliff Blezsinzki would like to see reached.

“I’m sorry, do you think graphics are good enough No they’re not! The Xbox 360 is great, we’ve pushed it further than we ever have with Gears of War 3, but I want Avatar in real-time and beyond, I want fully realistic CG, and are we there Absolutely not. I think there’s absolutely room for improvement,” said Blezsinzki. “Do graphics make gameplay No. But when I fire up my projector back at my house, put Avatar on – it still makes your jaw drop, it’s like a giant portal to another planet. I think we still have a long way to go before we get there, and I want us to get there.”

Blezsinzki also foresees the future of the industry being tied to online and social networking. “My money for the future of everything is on those who understand the online space the best. Because this is the world we live in, we’re always connected,” he said. “Between my personal and my professional life, I’m just addicted to what other people are saying all the time. It’s not fading for me, it’s not like MySpace. I find out about celebrity deaths immediately from other people now. And then you get the CNN news alert a day later: ‘Oh apparently that actress died, which we found out about yesterday.’ We’re in this world of churn, and those who understand online the best will know how to succeed, and those who don’t are just done.”

“It’s just a matter of those who own the platforms allowing the integration back and forth of the social networking experience,” he adds. “It’s a really complicated problem to solve and moving forward I’m curious to see what our publishing partners do.”

Source: OXM

Assassin’s Creed Hero Ezio May Come To Soulcalibur

Bonus characters have been a staple of Soulcalibur since the second incarnation had Spawn, Link and Heihachi for the Xbox, GCN and PS2 versions respectively. Since that time, Soulcalibur Legends had Lloyd Irving from Tales of Symphonia while Soulcalibur IV had the Star Wars characters Darth Vader, Yoda and Starkiller and Soulcalibur: Broken Destiny had Kratos from God of War.

Well that tradition might be continuing with Soulcalibur V, if a leaked screenshot from liveblog from a Namco Bandai event is to be believed. It shows Ezio Auditore da Firenze from the Assassin’s Creed franchise.


Batman: Arkham City Reviews Flatter Rocksteady

The early reviews are up for Batman: Arkham City and they are almost universally glowing, putting the Metacritic mark somewhere around an astounding 95 percent. Rocksteady Dax Ginn Marketing Game Manager says that the British developer is flattered and humbled by the reviews so far putting the game in league with Uncharted 3 and Gears of War 3.

“The games that are just around the corner… I can’t remember a more incredible two months of releases in my entire life,” said Ginn. “So to be regarded as right at the top of that line, that’s an incredible achievement for the team. We’re a really young studio but we’re a really hungry studio. We’re a really small team as well so having very tight, very focused communication… We’ve got a very strict, serious attitude to what we do. I think if we were to be regarded as triple A alongside the sort of titles that you’ve mentioned, it would really vindicate so many of the creative end production decisions we’ve made as a team.”

“The decision to deliberately stay small, the laser focus on making the greatest thing that we can and not waste time with flippant, frivolous stuff that doesn’t work. Every decision we make has got to pay off,” he added. “It was only two years ago that we were here with Arkham Asylum so within two years we’ve built something completely from scratch. There was very little about the game world that we had to build off from the first game so we’ve built up this entire environment from nothing. We’ve doubled Batman’s animation, expanded gadgetry, created an entirely new story telling system.”

Source: CVG {link no longer active}

iPhone 5 Overseen By Jobs, Says Reports

According to reports, the iPhone 5 was the last project that Steve Jobs was highly involved in. It is expected to have a slimmer profile and larger screen size in the same dimensions as the iPhone 4S and have LTE (4G) built in.

“This is a very large project that Steve dedicated all of his time to,” said a source. “He was not that involved in the 4S because his time was limited.”

The iPhone 5 is expected to debut in Summer 2012.


Casual Not Bad For Core Gaming, Says Peter Moore

Peter Moore is one of the most experienced executives in the gaming sphere, having some impact since his first arrival. One thing that has changed since he came on the scene was the rise of casual gaming, but EA’s COO doesn’t think casual games are bad for core gamers.

“It doesn’t mean because it’s casual that it’s wrong” says Moore while talking about acquiring PopCap. “We acquired them because we see the future of gaming. We love Need For Speed: The Run, we love Battlefield 3, but there’s also a time to play Plants vs Zombies and Bejeweled.”


OpenFeint Opens Android App

OpenFeint has announced that they have launched Game Channel for Android. The app allows developers boost visibility, highlight free-to-play titles, and create lists to it easier for consumers to find games.

“We learned a lot about discovery on Android with our Spotlight app and with Game Channel on iOS, and we’re confident Game Channel for Android will be the best way for Android gamers to find new titles on the platform,” said Eros Resmini, senior VP of marketing and developer relations. “As Android gaming continues to mature, Game Channel will provide an ideal solution for free-to-play developers looking for innovative distribution channels.”