BlueToad Claims It Is the Source Of The Apple Device Hacks

AntiSec recently claimed that it lifted 1 million unique identification numbers for Apple devices and some personal information, such as the names people assign to their iPads, iPhones and iPods from an FBI laptop. While the FBI has rejected that claim, Orlando-based BlueToad (which deals in converting files for consumption online and by mobile devices) says that they were the victims of a hack.

“BlueToad does not collect, nor have we ever collected, highly sensitive personal information like credit cards, Social Security numbers or medical information,” said BlueToad president Paul DeHart . “The illegally obtained information primarily consisted of Apple device names and UDIDs (unique device identification numbers) . . . information that was reported and stored pursuant to commercial industry development practices.”

Source: WashingtonPost.com

 

Zero Dark Thirty Working With EA’s Project Honor

Electronic Arts has announced plans to cross-promote Medal of Honor Warfighter with Zero Dark Thirty. The Hollywood movie is based on the real-life mission to capture or kill Osama bin Laden.

This partnership with Sony Pictures Entertainment will see a $1 million minimum donation to charities benefiting war veterans. The Medal of Honor Warfighter Zero Dark Thirty Map Pack will be available for sale in North America the week of December 17 for $9.99, or free to owners of the game’s Limited Edition pack.

The Zero Dark Thirty pack will include two multiplayer maps inspired by real world locations; each sold will see $1 donated, with donations split among participating nonprofits. The first map is Darra Gun Market, set in the largest illegal arms market in the world located in Pakistan while the second map in the a remote, rugged area north of Pakistan called Chitral, governed by tribes that will not allow the Pakistani army to operate there.

Medal of Honor Warfighter is inspired by real world events, real operations, and real warriors,” said EA COO, Peter Moore. “We’ve teamed up with Sony Pictures Entertainment to give back to the Special Operations community in honor of the sacrifices they and their families have made for their country and to connect people to the story of the greatest manhunt our world has seen.”

“Working with Project Honor is a meaningful way for us to continue our support for combat veterans throughout the armed services,” said Mark Boal, writer-producer of Zero Dark Thirty. “We are thrilled to be a part of this effort, and we’re humbled that EA is stepping up to the plate with such a significant contribution.”

 

Trapstar To Deliver Hitman-Styled Clothing

Square Enix announced that it is working with Trapstar to create Hitman inspired clothing. The clothing brand, which is worn by Rihanna and Rita Ora, have created t-shirts, hoodies and caps branded with recognizable symbols from the franchise, like Agent 47’s barcode, to mark the release of Hitman: Absolution on November 20.

Hitman: Absolution is one of the coolest entertainment brands around and Agent 47 is always dressed to kill, so working with Trapstar seemed the perfect fit,” said Square Enix brand and U.K. marketing director Jon Brooke.

“Being given the chance to work with Square Enix on the Hitman: Absolution project, has the makings of an epic collaboration,” added Mikey Trapstar. “It gives Trapstar the opportunity to be experimentally playful with the clothing and unleash darker imagery.”

Obama Hugger Faces Social Media Criticism

When Big Apple Pizza & Pasta Restaurant owner Scott Van Nuzer in Fort Pierce, Florida bear-hugged President Obama and picked him up off the ground, it created one of the more photographic moments from this week on the campaign trail. This being an election year, there was an immediate backlash on Yelp with multiple one-star reviews based solely on this incident and not on the quality of the restaurant.

“Talk about committing business suicide,” wrote Greg S., Cottonwood, Arizona. “After picking up Obama, your books are gonna be in the red pretty soon. Not too smart.”

There were, however, some people who came out in support of the gesture. “Pizza is awesome, New York pizza is the best in the world, and if this place sells “Big Apple” pizza it must be worth a visit,” wrote ‘Conscientious S.’ from Oakland, California. “This review brought to you by a political independent who thinks it’s wrong to vote down a business you’ve never visited just because the owner was hospitable to the President of the United States.”

Source: CBS

 

Apple Press Event Might Overshadow Nintendo’s

This week Apple and Nintendo are both making major product announcements at separate press events on September 12 and September 13 respectively. This potential conflict has some PR experts thinking Nintendo may have erred.

“My main thought is that Nintendo has a bigger PR problem than the date of its press conference,” said an anonymous PR veteran. “The biggest issue Nintendo has is the lack of anticipation or confidence. They have not created enough excitement and confidence among both consumers and developers, nor has their quiet given people the sense that a delightful surprise awaits. There seems to be a cloud hanging above them of ‘concern.’ They did not do a great job after E3 of bridging toward the fall. If they want this press conference to succeed, making people believe that there will be a surprise or proof of a big flagship title may help. Highlighting their focus on third party or any other innovations would also help.

“It seems that Nintendo does not think of Apple as a true competitor, and they seem to be relying on the fact that their intense focus and disregard of the rest of the market will prevail again. It’s interesting Nintendo is doing their press event in New York; that feels like a statement of appealing to the mainstream press, the mass market (as opposed to Silicon Valley or the game developers). But Apple is already mainstream and doesn’t really need that, of course. It’s possible Nintendo believes reporters who cover interactive, games and tech will simply cover both events, and since they don’t seem to really think they are in the same business as Apple, they may be surprised.”

“From here on out they need to really close the gap, make a statement and gain consumer confidence for the retail launch,” the PR veteran concluded.

To our own PR director Meelad Sadat, the timing might not be as much of a problem. “This might be a case of different vibes for different tribes,” he wrote. “The iPhone launch will surely get coverage on game sites, but at the end of the day it’s a smartphone. It’ll get launch coverage and a follow up piece or two to have its hardware dissected. With the Wii U, we’re getting the first next gen console. I think with game press and for the people who religiously follow game news, they’ll get their fill of Wii U coverage.”

“Whether this was an orchestrated showdown at high noon or a couple of gunslingers who bumped up against each other at the bar, neither should blink,” he added. “That’s my advice. Can you imagine the headlines ‘Apple’s new iPhone sends Nintendo running for cover.’ Maybe as a headline that needs an edit, but you get my point.”

Sadat notes that Nintendo still has some challenges for this new press event. “As for impact, unfortunately Nintendo’s introduced a piece of hardware that’s only raised questions since it was announced. There are questions around the system’s capabilities compared to this generation, GamePad issues and how it might slow down game performance, and of course price point. The latter comes down to what it costs to take the system home with two controllers, whether that’s a GamePad and Wiimote, and a game. If that’s climbing towards $400-$500, look out. If I’m a hardcore gamer, do I spend that money or wait to see what powerhouse next-gen console Sony and Microsoft are planning ”

“If I’m looking at making this the kids’ best Christmas ever, is it with this pricey, cumbersome looking game console or an iPad (or even the iPad mini, which very well could be on deck for Apple’s upcoming event) — continued Sadat. “Nintendo’s event needs to be a wonderfully orchestrated, entertaining affair that answers troubling questions. I think I just talked myself into catching the live stream.”

Source: GamesIndustry International

 

Mortal Kombat’s Future Likely Next-Gen, Not Tied To DC

NetherRealm Studios are currently finished up work on Injustice: Gods Among Us, a fighting game based around DC super heroes. Ed Boon indicates, however, that this does not mean that they’re looking to follow the game up with another Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe . . . or even with a Mortal Kombat game this generation.

“We don’t have any current plans to mash the two franchises together again,” he said. “Never say never, of course, but we loved how our last Mortal Kombat game was strictly Mortal Kombat. And when you think about it, the last Mortal Kombat game we did, it really had the essence of the series more so than any other game in years. With Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, there’s two pretty different audiences; one which wants to see violence and blood, and there’s another that wants to see grand superhero moments. We were kind of balancing on a fence trying to accommodate both audiences with Mortal Kombat vs. DC.”

“Just philosophically, I don’t think we could take the approach of doing the same thing but adding new characters in our next Mortal Kombat game,” he added. “We definitely want to do something new with it, we feel we have to introduce something into the mix. If you introduce another edition of your game on the same console, you cannot provide a radically different experience. I’m sure, if we were to do a new Mortal Kombat game on next generation systems, I think we would be able to provide dramatically different experiences.”

Source: CVG

 

Ghost Recon Online Now Focusing On PC Exclusively

Ghost Recon Online was, at one point in time, designed to be a free-to-play title that would release on PC and Wii U. While it was anticipated as one of the first, if not the first, free-to-play titles on the new Nintendo system, it’s been revealed that it may never see the light of day on Wii U.

“As of right now, the entire Ghost Recon team is focused on the PC version only. The Wii U version is on hold,” said Ghost Recon Online’s producer Theo Sanders. “It’s hard to say how the future will go for Ghost Recon Online. I think in the future as different platforms evolving towards service models and towards being really online-driven, community-driven platforms, then we’ll definitely be looking at what our options are.”

If in the future we have an opportunity to address it again, we’ll make future announcements. But as of right now we’re focused completely on the PC version,” he continued. “It’s not a reaction to anything specific happening to [Wii U]. It was a really fun, cool platform to develop for. But you realize once you launch an online service that it’s an all-consuming effort, so we really wanted to have all hands on deck.”

Source: Video Gamer

Broken Sword Kickstarter Reaches Initial Goal

Revolution Software has announced that they have reached their Kickstarter goal of $400,000 for Broken Sword: The Serpent’s Curse. Like many successful Kickstarters that reach their goal weeks ahead of time, the company has announced stretch goals.

“When a Broken Sword game is conceived, Charles’ vision is inevitably too expensive and too ambitious to make,” said the company. “With your help, we’d like to rip up the rulebook and add more content, more characters, and more gameplay to bring you the most epic Broken Sword adventure yet!”

At $500,000, the company will bring back various characters, puzzles, Easter eggs, art, and dialogue for the “director’s cut” version of the game. $650,000 will see the game add locations in the Middle-East and North Africa.

“When Charles first proposed the Serpent’s Curse he devised a whole swathe of adventuring in the exotic cradle of civilization, exploring lost ruins and uncovering long forgotten secrets,” said the company. “We thought this was far too ambitious, but when we reach this goal, we can take George and Nico to these thrilling locations packed with fun, danger, and monkeys! (Pick two.)”

At $800,000, they will add classic antagonists and a Director’s Commentary option. Finally, the $1 million goal is the most ambitious of all — Beneath a Steel Sky 2.

“So where can we take you after fulfilling our ambition For many years we have wanted to write a sequel to our 1994 classic adventure. If we reach this goal we will start work on this exciting, much-demanded project, and implement Easter eggs in Broken Sword: the Serpent’s Curse, offering a glimpse of this futuristic dystopia,” concluded the company.

Source: Kickstarter.com