Gree Acquires App Ant Studios

Gree announced that it has picked up App Ant Studios, the developer of Dino Life for Android. The developers at App Ant will join Gree’s San Francisco studio and the studios four founders will have lead positions in the company’s Game Development and Engineering teams.

“The team at App Ant Studios has continually impressed us with the quality of its engineering, art, and overall product. They share the same strong passion Gree has for mobile social gaming and we genuinely respect their dedication to evolving the gaming industry, ” said Gree chief executive officer Naoki Aoyagi. “With our constantly growing and evolving mobile game market, having such exceptional talent on board to build great experiences for the latest hardware is a huge priority for us.”

Gree currently has development studios in San Francisco, Tokyo, Dubai, Beijing, California, Seoul, Singapore, London, Amsterdam and Sao Paolo.


iPhone 5 Sets Pre-Order Records

Apple confirmed that the iPhone 5 topped 2 million sales in one day. This number is more that double what the iPhone 4S managed.

Demand for the device is so high, some pre-orders will be delivered to customers in October, rather than September as previously planned. Apple says most pre-orders will be delivered on September 21.

“Clearly it’s a blowout,” said Brian White, an analyst at Topeka Capital Markets who had anticipated sales of 1.3 million to 1.5 million units.

“iPhone 5 pre-orders have shattered the previous record held by the iPhone 4S and the customer response to the iPhone 5 has been phenomenal,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of global marketing.

AT&T said its customers ordered a record number of the iPhone 5. The company’s subscribers ordered more of the new smartphone model than any previous iPhone both on its first day of pre-orders, said the carrier.

All of this pushed Apple’s stock to over $700 is after hours trading, a new record in valuation.


MGM Picks Up Metro 2033 Film Rights

MGM has announced that it has picked up the screen rights to the book Metro 2033. The Dmitry Glukhovsky novel is the basis for the game of the same name.

F. Scott Frazier is set to write the script for the movie adaptation. Mark Johnson, whose credits include The Chronicles of Narnia movies and Galaxy Quest, is producing via his Gran Via Productions.

Metro: Last Light, a sequel to Metro 2033, is being developed by 4A Games with a planned release in early 2013.


GDC Online Becoming GDC Next

The organizers of Game Developers Conference (GDC) announced that GDC Online will be re-imagined as GDC Next. The App Developers Conference will take place concurrent with GDC Next on November 5-7, 2013 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

GDC Next focuses on issues with smartphone, tablet, social, independent and cloud gaming, while ADC is a brand new event focusing on development, UI, marketing and the business of apps. The final version of GDC Online will take place in Austin, Texas from October 9-11.

Find out more about the two new events at and


Zynga Gets A Bit Lucky

Zynga announced that it has acquired developer A Bit Lucky. The San Mateo, California developer is responsible for the mid-core titles Lucky Space and Lucky Train, which will be indicative of the social games that Zynga will be looking to produce.

“Today, we’re very excited to announce the very beginnings of our efforts to expand into a category that we’ve talked about before, which is mid-core multi-platform games. To bolster those efforts I want to make an announcement about a small acquisition today: The talented team of A Bit Lucky, which is a studio focused on creating mid-core multi-platform games. They’re going to be joining Zynga as part of Zynga San Francisco.” said Zynga VP Bill Jackson. “That team is made up of veterans from the game industry, companies like Trion Worlds and Xfire, as well as other companies. All 20 of A Bit Lucky’s employees, including my friends and veterans, Fredric Descamps and Jordan Maynard, are going to become part of Zynga San Francisco with their team.”

“We started almost three years ago and managed to get some pretty impressive investors behind us. A few months ago we started working on Solstice Arena,” said Fredric Descamps, co-founder and CEO of A Bit Lucky. “The main reason why we chose to work with Zynga is pretty simple: It’s really all about the people. It was a meeting of the minds when we started talking with Zynga. We really found here with Bill Jackson, Steven Chiang, Mark Skaggs, and Mark Pincus, people who are extremely passionate about making great games, people who are very entrepreneurial, who are quick-moving, which is all the things we like as gaming entrepreneurs. Meeting with Bill Jackson and Mark Pincus was the turning point for us in making the decision to join forces with Zynga.”

Find out more about A Bit Lucky in this two part [a]list interview.

Source: GamesIndustry International


Wii U To Wii Transfers Detailed

Nintendo of America’s product marketing manager Bill Trinen says that in order to transfer an account and associated purchases from a Wii to a Wii U, both machines will have to be connected to the Internet. The process is not unlike to 3DS-to-3DS XL transfers.

“Essentially you’ll have your Wii and you’ll have your Wii U,” said Trinen. “Those two will connect and the data transfer will happen and you’ll transfer the SD card over. Then you’ll have access to the digital content that you downloaded for Wii and you can play that on Wii U.”

Also, while the Wii U does support NFC technology, no launch games will make use of it. While Skylanders Giants uses a type of NFC, it was found impracticable to use with the GamePad.

Source: 1UP


Platinum Games Explains Bayonetta 2 Move To Wii U

One of the biggest surprises from the Nintendo press conference this past week was the revelation that Bayonetta 2 will be a Wii U exclusive published by Nintendo. Members of Platinum Games took to their website to comment on the move.

“The console games market is in a state of upheaval, so establishing a new game franchise requires a considerable amount of will, determination, and love. Bayonetta is a brand that we want to see become stronger, reaching the hands of more and more gamers, so we have continued to consult with Sega, the previous game’s publisher, on how we can make sure this takes place. Our answer was a new partnership with Nintendo,” Tatsuya Minami President & CEO, Platinum Games. “Alongside Nintendo, we hope to grow the Bayonetta brand beyond where it stands today, allowing even more gamers around the world to experience the action of our beloved witch. As developers, we are working hard to make this a reality. We hope that you will look forward to what we have in store.”

“Even though there has been a bit of a gap since the release of the last game, but I still got lots of request for a sequel from gamers,” said Tatsuya Minami President & CEO, Platinum Games. “We were secretly making one the entire time. While I am not the director of this game, I am still supervising the world, story, characters, etc. in close coordination with Hashimoto, and I have been from the very beginning. You have nothing to work about on that end. And of course, plenty of members from the first Bayonetta are on-board and working hard under the direction of Hashimoto, so I look forward to work every day, coming in and seeing all the progress they have made on the game. With new hardware, we look forward to expanding on the Climax Action of Bayonetta, so sit tight and get ready!”



Wanted: Supernatural Assassins

Bethesda has released “The Drunken Whaler,” the song backing Dishonored‘s excellent E3 trailer from this year, as a free download.

Not only can you download the song, but you can also grab the stems and submit your own remix to Bethesda’s official Remix Competition. Place in the top ten, and you’ll win a free copy of the game, a T-shirt, and a poster. The grand prize winner will be featured in an interview on the official Bethesda blog.

Sharpen your skills with Dishonored – Rat Assassin for iPhone and iPad. In a cut throat world, the boldest measures are the safest. Help rid the Dunwall streets of plagued rats, one slice, dice, and crossbow shot at a time. The perfect training for a supernatural assassin.




Dragon Age 3: Inquisition Confirmed

BioWare officially announced that Dragon Age 3: Inquisition is in development right now. The game will have BioWare’s famed storytelling, an emphasis on RPG gameplay and a new engine based on “EA’s critically-acclaimed Frostbite 2 technology.”

“We’ve been poring over player feedback from past games and connecting directly with our fans. They haven’t held back, so we’re not either,” said BioWare Edmonton general manager Aaryn Flynn. “With Dragon Age 3: Inquisition, we want to give fans what they’re asking for – a great story with choices that matter, a massive world to explore, deep customization and combat that is both tactical and visceral. At the same time, we know we need new technology to truly make this vision become fully realized. And we’ve been working with DICE to make Frostbite 2 the foundation for the engine that is going to power Dragon Age 3.”

Dragon Age 3: Inquisition will release late in 2013.