The Sims 4 Offers Offline Option

Electronic Arts and Maxis have announced The Sims 4 for PC and Mac today, with a planned release date in 2014. Perhaps acknowledging the challenges of maintaining an online infrastructure for a game, The Sims 4 is explicitly described as a “single-player offline experience.”

It was also announced that The Sims series has sold more than 150 million units worldwide. The Sims has seen the release of three full games, 18 stuff packs, and 24 expansions with another two expansions planned for this year for The Sims 3.

Ubisoft Requests Title Change For Super Ubi Land

Notion Games has revealed that they have received emails from Ubisoft about their title Super Ubi Land over possible brand confusion. The indie title has released on PC, Mac, Linux and Wii U.

“Been exchanging emails with Ubisoft. Unfortunately, we have to change the title of #SuperUbiLand,” said Notion. “Ubisoft is not doing anything wrong. They’re protecting their business just like any small business would. They don’t want Notion infringing on their brand. They’re being fair.”

Source: Twitter.com

PepsiCo Severs Ties With Lil Wayne

PepsiCo is cutting ties with Lil Wayne over the rapper’s crude lyrical reference to civil rights martyr Emmett Till, despite Wayne’s apology. This follows the pulling of an ad that was criticized for portraying racial stereotypes and making light of violence toward women.

Music and media industry executive Paul Porter has complained about both the Lil Wayne collaboration and the Mountain Dew video on his website RapRehab.com. He believes that PepsiCo is trying “to do the right thing now” and that the company is “doing a whole evaluation of the process” involving its commercials and musicians, based on his conversations with the company.

“I commend them for making this strong judgment,” he said. “Lil Wayne’s apology was not an apology.”

Source: SFgate.com

Marvelous Rejiggers XSEED Division

MarvelousAQL has announced that its U.S. publishing subsidiary XSEED JKS is being rebranded as Marvelous USA, with Shinichi Suzuki as the president and CEO. This new division will retain the XSEED Games brand for publishing PC, console, and handheld games and Marvelous Online (bolstered earlier this year by the addition of the Atlus Online team) for mobile and social titles.

“Marvelous USA unifies our U.S. operations under the global Marvelous brand while giving our customers topnotch products and support for both traditional and online social and mobile games,” said Suzuki. “Our XSEED Games console and PC brand will continue to offer the quality games and service for which it is known, and Marvelous Online gives us expanded reach into mobile and online social gaming markets.”

Ken Berry will continue as executive vice president of the XSEED Games label, managing all publishing, marketing, and localization efforts for the brand while Marvelous Online will be run by the recently appointed senior director Tatsuya Nishioka. Both Berry and Nishioka will report directly to Suzuki.

Nook Getting Google Apps

Barnes & Noble has announced that they will bring Google Play to their Nook devices. This news comes after the revelation that the Nook underperformed during the 2012 holiday season and early 2013.

“It opens up a whole world of content and really gives [Nook] HD and HD Plus a unique position,” said William J. Lynch Jr., CEO of Barnes & Noble. “There’s no question this is going to accelerate sales.”

This move will allow Nook owners to choose from 700,000 apps, including Facebook, Twitter and Netflix and even Amazon’s Kindle app. Barnes & Noble is seeking to focus more on digital content, including books, movies and apps, while reigning in its hardware spending.

“Of all the things that Barnes & Noble could do to expand its potential audience, running the features of Android that consumers like is a great step,” said Sarah Rotman Epps, a senior analyst with Forrester Research. “You can’t change the fundamentals of Barnes & Noble’s brand and their customer footprint and the economics of their business, but adding more Android features makes this product more appealing to more customers.”

Michael Norris, senior analyst for Simba Information, sees Barnes & Noble emulating the Amazon model by creating a comprehensive online shopping center of nonbook media. “I think Barnes & Noble is learning a few lessons from Amazon,” said Norris. “And that has to do with sweetening the deal and adding value for the consumer. Amazon has always had a greater variety of movie and video content, and I think Barnes & Noble is hoping to erase part of their entertainment deficit.”

The Barnes & Noble CEO says that discussions with Google have been ongoing for two years but recently stepped up. The book retailer has sold more than 10 million Nooks in the U.S. since launching the device in 2009.

Source: NYTimes.com

Warren Buffet Acquires 1,000 Twitter Followers Per Minute

By Elena Zanone

Last week the Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffet joined Twitter, scooping up more than 45,000 followers in less than 45 minutes of being on the platform.

“Warren is in the house.” Buffet tweeted.

The 82-year-old “Oracle of Omaha” sent out that debut tweet from account @warrenbuffett during a live webcast interview with Fortune’s Pattie Sellers on the changing landscape for women in business. The event was marked as the first social media event for the notoriously technology-averse billionaire.

It was only a matter of time before the business mogul rightly took ownership of his slab of the platform. There are already dozens of fake Warren Buffett accounts on Twitter, some of which have pretty sizable followings too. @W_Buffett has more than 100,000 followers and @BuffettInvestorhas nearly 35,000 followers.

If gaining 1,000 followers per minute wasn’t enough indication of his future success on the social network, his classic quips secure him as a shoe-in for success too.

Aside from his long term notoriety and influence in the industry, he also has had some great, concise quotes over his career – perfect for the 140-character loving platform. There’s the classic that would have been great as a tweet: “Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1,” or the humorous, “I buy expensive suits. They just look cheap on me.” Then there’s the profound, “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing,” as well as, “In the business world, the rearview mirror is always clearer than the windshield.”

The investing guru now stands in good mogul company. Other recent Twitter converts include News Corp CEO Rupert Murdoch (@RupertMurdoch) and former U.S. President Bill Clinton (@BillClinton).

What do you want to see Warren Buffet tweet – tips, insider news, behind-the-scenes updates Let us know in the comments below! 

Source: Reuters

PepsiCo In Hot Water For Goat Ad

PepsiCo has taken flak for an ad that some are saying embraces racial stereotypes and makes light of violence towards women. Pepsi has taken the video from off of their online channels, as has the director of the ad, African-American hip-hop artist Tyler the Creator.

For its part, Pepsi was direct when the issue came to light about the ad. “We apologize for this video and take full responsibility,” said a PepsiCo spokeswoman in an emailed statement.To put the ad in context, there was a a previous video where the goat attacked the women, who was its waitress, after she tasted Mountain Dew.

Source: Reuters.com

Nintendo Actively Courting Smartphone Developers For Wii U

Nintendo is looking to make it easier to bring smartphone applications to the Wii U. The platform holder is offering professional-use conversion software to developers so they can produce smartphone games that can be played on Wii U

Nintendo hopes smartphone software will push more sales of the Wii U. The Wii U missed its full year sales estimates selling only 3.45 million units during the last fiscal year.

Source: JapanTimes.co.jp

Mega Man 25th Anniversary Case Announced For 3DS/3DS XL

Capcom has announced that they are putting out a Mega Man 25th anniversary case for 3DS and 3DS XL. This comes after the popularity of the Monster Hunter cases and all of the NES Mega Man games coming to Virtual Console.

“On the front you see this striking 8-bit Mega Man image, while the back has the 25th anniversary logo to commemorate two-plus decades of mega-goodness. They’re not on sale just yet (still being ironed out / ordered) but they’ll definitely be at SDCC – plus we’ll have some for the Capcom Store too. And like the MH case, there will be regular 3DS / XL versions from which to choose,” wrote Brett Elston, Senior Online/Community Manager at Capcom. “In other case news, there are even more Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate cases coming. They’re not as far along as this Mega Man case though, so once we have images to share, I’m sure Yuri will post ’em on Unity!”

Source: Capcom-Unity.com

iPad Leads Tablet Sales As Competitors Come On Strong

IDC reports that Microsoft shipped 900,000 Surface tablets and that Windows 8 and Windows RT shipments totaled 1.8 million during the first quarter, making it the fifth biggest maker of tablet computers. Amazon was fourth with 1.8 million Kindle tablets shipped, Asus was at number 3 with 2.7 million tablets shipped (such as Google’s Nexus 7), Samsung landed at two with 8.8 million tablets shipped during Q1 and Apple lead the way with 19.5 million iPads shipped.

“Sustained demand for the iPad mini and increasingly strong commercial shipments led to a better-than expected first quarter for Apple,” Tom Mainelli, research director for IDC. “In addition, by moving the iPad launch to the fourth quarter of 2012, Apple seems to have avoided the typical first-quarter slowdown that traditionally occurred when consumers held off buying in January and February in anticipation of a new product launch in March.”

Overall tablet shipments grew 142.4 percent year over year to 49.2 million, better than the entire first half of 2012. While Apple was far and away the biggest maker of tablet computers and saw its shipments nearly double from last year, its market share was down from 58.1 percent last year to 39.6 percent.

Source: PCmag.com