Week in Review: From Rockstar to E3

To keep you busy and informed during these long summer months, BWP will be starting a new feature called the "Week in Review", where we will recap the news and reviews we covered, inform you of some news we may have missed and look forward to the week ahead. From gaming, to movies and beyond, we hope to keep you apprised of all the relevant news. If we missed anything, don't hesitate to let us know in the comments, and use this post as an opportunity to tell us what you'd like to see covered on our site!

SPOTLIGHT: ROCKSTAR GAMES

All week on BWP, we expressed our undying love for the company that brought us suck epic games as Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption, all leading up to our review of their most recent game, L.A. Noire, the highlight of the week on the site, as well as a look at the DLC they will be offering over the summer for the title.

We looked at The legacy of Rockstar and what they've done in the past to revolutionize gaming, as well as the future of the company and what they have in store for us in the future with franchises such as GTA, Max Payne, and much more.

Finally, we offered two classic reviews that were Rockstar related, as Russ Dornisch reviewed Grand Theft Auto IV and Phil T reviewed Red Dead Redemption. How did L.A. Noire stack up against these titles. Read our reviews to find out!

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This week's spotlight: This week will be another gaming week on BWP, as we will be focusing on E3, the biggest gaming conference of the year. All the major developers, publishers and console companies will be there, and we will be covering all the reveals, all the new details on games and all the surprises, so stay tuned for all the coverage!

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PSN BACK UP AND RUNNING

The big gaming news of the week was that full PSN service was finally restored. After nearly a month and a half of downtime, thanks to the hackers, Sony finally managed to get their store back up and running. Online play and a few other services had already been back for a couple of weeks, but as of this week, PSN users are finally able to purchases new items out of the store, including new games which will be added tot he store twice a week through june, Playstation Plus content as well as extra content for games that were purchases during downtime.

The welcome back program was also made available, allowing users to download two free titles, among five offered, for both the PS3 and the PSP, as well as a free full month of PS+.

As mentioned above, we will be covering E3 this week, and it will be very interesting to see how Sony handles the situation at their press conference, which takes place today (Monday) at 8PM Easterm. The conference will probably be heavy on the new Playstation Vita (the rumored name change from the Playstation NGP) and it's launch line-up as well as new Playstation Move titles, but expect better looks at Uncharted 3, Twisted Metal, The Last Guardian as well as some new titles, the biggest rumor being for a new God of War game, possibly a spin-off.

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OTHER GAMING NEWS

This week was gaming-heavy on BWP, but with our focus on Rockstar, you may have missed some of the following news:

  • Mortal Kombat will be adding a new character, Skarlet as DLC this summer, to go with the upcoming Klassic Skins Pack. Don't forget to read our review of the game!
  • Square Enix revealed a brand new "Revenge" trailer for their highly anticipated RPG, Deus Ex: Human Revolution.
  • THQ announced a rebranding of their long-time Smackdown vs. Raw series. The latest wrestling game from the company, which promises big changes and the largest roster ever, and which will release November 21st, has been retitled simply "WWE 12", following the path of similar yearly sports/combat titles.
  • One of the most highly anticipated games of the year, Batman: Arkham City, just added Catwoman as a playable character, with her own skills, movesets and even gadgets to go along with the main Batman storyline. Expect a lot of news out of this Warner Bros. title at E3 this week.
  • The Collector's Edition and pre-order bonuses for Uncharted 3, another of our most highly anticipated games, have been announced on the Playstation Blog. The collector's edition will feature a statue of Nathan Drake as well as replicas of some of his jewelry and his belt buckle, as well as a chest, along with, of course, the game. DLC includes being able to turn into a swarm of deadly creatures, earlier regeneration boosting, laser sight for your AK-47 and more, depending on where you buy it from. As with Batman: AC, expect to hear a lot about Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception at E3 this week!
  • Activision announced a new online service for their upcoming mega-blockbuster Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 entitled Call of Duty: Elite. The service is said to "enhance" the online multiplayer experience for the game and many have speculated it will takes actions to reduce the amount of cheaters online and to level the playing field for most gamers. To me, it just sounds like a cash grab. I guess we'll see!
  • New game announcements include Darksiders 2 from THQ, a Carmageddon reboot from Stainless games, a Star Trek co-op game for the consoles and PC, and a Metal Gear Solid HD collection from Konai which will include MGS 2, 3, and Peacewalker for both systems.
  • This week's releases include inFAMOUS 2 (PS3), so expect our review in the coming weeks as well as an anticipatory classic review of the original inFAMOUS in the coming days. Red Faction: Armageddon is the other major release, for both consoles and PC.

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MOVIE AND TV NEWS:

  • This week's Box Office was won by X-Men: First Class, but with only a mere $56 million, the smallest total in the franchise and one of the worst opens for Marvel in a long time. It's a shame, too, because in my opinion it was one of the best superhero movies ever. Expect our review later today. The Hangover: Part 2 was second with $32.4M, bringing its ridiculous total to $186 million domestic. The third movie in that series is apparently being fast-tracked.
  • While the two Hobbit movies are still undergoing production, their three production studios have announced the release dates and taglines for both films.
  • Breaking Bad will be returning for their 4th season after over 12 months of off-time on July 17th. Click the link for a teaser trailer.
  • It looks as if The Event will get a chance to finish up their story. SyFy is in talks to pick up the show for a miniseries to tie up their loose ends. One of the season's most neglected shows, The Event failed to live up to a lot of pre-season hype, thanks to a long layoff in the middle of the season and a lot of plot twists that the people its marketing campaign drew in probably didn't want to see. Don't believe me, see for yourself in this year's TV Ratings rankings.
  • In more NBC news, Fear Factor will be returning to TV after a five year layoff.
  • On the heels of the release of a great trailer for his upcoming movie, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, it's being reported that director David Fincher has acquired the rights to adapt another crime novel about a home invader entitled "Panic Attack"
  • Screen Rant has collected some early impressions for two big summer movies, J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg's Super 8 and Transformer 3. Are these sci-fi blockbusters worth your money? Time to start forming impressions
  • Despite Arnold Schwarzenegger's personal problems, production on Terminator 5 is apparently moving along
  • And finally, here's the week's Hot Trailer: Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

Tune in to BWP all week for plenty of coverage of games, movies, and TV!