So here’s the story. It seems young boys between 6 and 9 who spend too much time on their games consoles are less educated and less capable of reading and writing than kids the same age who aren’t tied to their Xbox, PlayStation or Wii.
Apple Corps, Ltd., MTV Games and Harmonix, the world’s leading developer of music-based games and a part of Viacom’s MTV Networks (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), today announced The Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967) will be available in its entirety for purchase and playable as downloadable content in The Beatles™: Rock Band™ Music Store starting November 17, 2009.
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band becomes the second full album from The Beatles to hit The Beatles: Rock Band Music Store since the video game’s launch on September 9, 2009. Last month MTV Games and Harmonix released Abbey Road (1969) as the first full downloadable album for use in the game. Additionally, “All You Need Is Love,” the first downloadable track available for the game, has shown similar success with more than 100,000 downloads to date on XboxLIVE® online entertainment network and all Apple Corps Ltd., MTV Games, Harmonix and Microsoft proceeds benefiting Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).
Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison all turned up at US games industry event E3 yesterday to pimp the world premiere of The Beatles: Rock Band.
This music-based video game offers a glimpse at The Beatles’ music, career, and legacy. The Beatles: Rock Band will be released worldwide on 9/9/09, as will the release of the entire, original, digitally re-mastered Beatles CD catalogue.
With the success of Guitar Hero and Rock Band, it really was only a matter of time before a gamut of that genre of gaming title hit the market, and now Disney Interactive Studios has announced ‘Ultimate Band’, a game which will feature music from the Plain White T’s.
Announced in February and developed by Fall Line Studio in Salt Lake City, Utah, Ultimate Band takes players through the star system, from first getting together to becoming rock royalty. It ships in the US in the coming weeks.
Developer Cassidy Lackey of Handmark claims the cash gained from games development on Apple’s mobile platforms is temptation enough to bring in new devs, observing that while its GTS World Racing game is available for a variety of smartphones, “our iPhone version generates 98% of our revenue,” Gamesutra informs.
For Apple TV users, of course, the big news is that after an extensive push by the hard-working developers behind the project, the new version of the software that’s compatible with the recently-software-updated Apple TV 2.3 is available now.
Seems not only media-junkies have been paying attention. Boxee recently revealed a $4 million investment from Spark Capital and Union Square Ventures which will see Bijan Sabet from Spark and Fred Wilson from Union Square join the Boxee board.
Microsoft has introduced its new upgraded Xbox Experience for Xbox Live. New features in this release include streaming of TV shows and films through Netflix (in the US, so far), the ability to install games to the HDD, an avatar system, and the “Community Games platform”.
The price of Blu-ray players and discs seems set to fall this season, as those involved seek to take the format into the mass market – meanwhile that market’s changing, with consumers flocking to sign-up to location-based social networking services for their mobile phones, a pair of ABI Research reports claim.
“Blu-ray vendors and dealers are starting to realize that for Blu-ray to become the next DVD, they need to lower player prices in order to generate interest and build volumes,” said ABI Research principal analyst Steve Wilson.
Things are getting serious in the growing relationship between music and video gaming, with Activision confirming some big name acts as part of the jamboree around the launch of Guitar Hero World Tour.
R.E.M., Blind Melon, Metallica, and more have been confirmed by developer Activision as offering downloadable tracks during the launch of Guitar Hero World Tour.
Microsoft has reached a deal with Netflix under which the latter service will offer Xbox LIVE users who are also members of Netflix Gold free access to over 10,000 films and a multitude of TV shows.
It’s a significant move into digital media for Microsoft’s games console, and while sure to dent US sales of the far more limited Apple TV (after all, Xbox plays games, accesses the internet, plays DVDs and more), it’s really an attack on the PS 3. And Sony will be planning its own response, making use of its own media properties.
In related news, NBC Universal has started supplying video (Heroes etc) via Xbox Live – no great surprise given the continuing track record of partnerships between the world’s biggest software company and one of the the world’s most dominant entertainment brands…
Bigging-up the deal, John Schappert, corporate vice president of Interactive Entertainment LIVE, Software and Services Business at Microsoft trumpted: “We are creating a completely new social entertainment experience, and Xbox 360 will be the only video game system where you can access your library of instantly streamable movies from Netflix and turn any room into a virtual movie theater.”
How it works: From the Netflix website, members simply add movies and TV episodes to their individual instant Queues. Those choices will be automatically displayed on the TV screen via Xbox 360 and available to watch instantly.