Bethesda gets a stellar cast for “Dishonored”

“Dishonored,” the upcoming steampunk-esque revenge-themed title from Bethesda Softworks and Arkane Studios, will have a cast of voice actors including Oscar winner Susan Sarandon.

Sarandon won her Academy Award for her role in 1995′s “Dead Man Walking.” In the movie, Sarandon played Sister Helen Prejean, an nun who while opposing capital punishment, tries to prevent the execution of a murderer played by Sean Penn. In Dishonored, Sarandon will play Granny Rags, who Bethesda describes as a “an intriguing old blind woman now deranged after years of street life.”

From Bethesda’s announcement:

Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe-winner Brad Dourif takes
on the role of the inventor Piero, creator of the iconic mask worn by
Corvo as well as a wealth of gadgets Corvo can use. Emmy winner and
Hollywood-icon Carrie Fisher can be heard broadcasting government propaganda over loudspeakers throughout the city of Dunwall, where the game is set.

The all-star cast continues with John Slattery (“Mad
Men,” “The Adjustment Bureau”) who takes on the role of Admiral
Havelock, a Loyalist who helps Corvo on his quest, as well as Michael Madsen who brings his videogame voiceover experience to the role of Daud, a mysterious assassin. Chlo Grace Moretz (“Kick-Ass,” “Hugo”) portrays Young Lady Emily, the Empress’ daughter who is kidnapped after her mother’s death while Lena Headey joins the cast as Calista, Emily’s caretaker. In addition to the star-studded voice cast, Composer Daniel Licht (“Dexter”) lends his musical talents to create the game’s original score. 

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Sony unveils PlayStation Vita launch games

The PlayStation Vita will have 25 games available for sale on its release date, Sony revealed today.

The Vita, Sony’s next handheld, is scheduled for a Feb. 22 release date in the United States. Sony revealed in a blog post today that the following titles will also be for sale at that time in stores or via download:

First Party Games:

  • Escape Plan (PlayStation Network only)
  • Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational
  • Hustle Kings (PSN only)
  • Little Deviants
  • ModNation Racers: Road Trip
  • Super StarDust Delta (PSN only)
  • Uncharted: Golden Abyss
  • wipEout 2048
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Star Wars: The Old Republic beta weekend

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The Inquisitor looked at me expectantly, hoping to see what nugget of information I would pry loose from the victim strapped to the table. The man coolly went about his business while my prey writhed in fear of what was to come. But after a few words of calm and a promise of help, his will melted before this unexpected kindness. And I kept my word, seeing that he would leave Korriban’s tombs and its Academy politic far behind him.

I was Sith. Sith, with a heart of compassion for those that deserved it…and an unrelenting storm to those that did not.

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Get your skills on for Diablo 3

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The mighty skill trees of Diablo 3 are finally available for everyone to peruse at their leisure.The beta is due out “soonish”, though prospective demon slayers can slap down a few skills using this free tool online to plan out the perfect build for their chosen character. Or characters. Endless scrutiny ahoy!

The tool does remind prospective adventurers that the level cap for the beta is set at 13, though it allows window shopping skills that unlock further on such as at level 29.

All of the classes are represented from the muscle-bound juggernaut, the Barbarian, to the newish Demon Hunter who apparently replaces the Rogue. I’m tempted to go Wizard or Monk this time around, though the voodoo-inspired trickery of the Witch Doctor – who is apparently covering for the no-longer-around Necromancer – is also a tempting choice.

Behind the scenes with From Software, makers of “Dark Souls”

Here’s a new video with the people at From Software, the Japanese developers of the upcoming Dark Souls and Armored Core V.

Dark Souls is being billed as a spiritual successor to Demon’s Souls, a favorite of many PlayStation 3 owners and RPG fans who seemingly can’t stop referring to its difficulty. Namco Bandai is banking on that reputation as a selling point, even making preparetodie.com the URL for the game’s website.

Dark Souls’ release date is scheduled for Oct. 4 for PlayStation 3 and XBox 360.

Video: The Lagacy of iD

Game developers iD Software pioneered the first-person shooter genre with PC games like Wolfenstein 3D and Doom.

I still remember the first time I saw Doom, which happened during a church group event at my pastor’s house, of all places. His son showed off a Star Wars title and Doom on his PC, and I couldn’t believe somebody actually made a game where players could shoot demons while viewing the action from the perspective of somebody holding a gun. I thought the concept was wild, if not transgressive. (Although I wouldn’t have used “transgressive” anytime soon after the game’s 1993 release.)

The company’s newest project is Rage, another FPS set in a dystopian world. The developers and publishers at Bethesda Softworks today released “The Legacy of Id,” the first behind the scenes video for Rage.

Rage is scheduled for an Oct. 4 release for PC, PlayStation 3 and XBox 360.

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Konami’s pre-E3 gathering showcases indie games, wackiness

Slime, go-karts and scantily clad women with bad attitudes all had a part in the event Konami called its first-annual pre-E3 show.

E3, of course, is gaming’s annual convention in Los Angeles. It’s a time for big companies to host big events for big ideas like new consoles and AAA-titles all in hopes of making big money.

Konami’s event, however, was smaller in scale. The publisher’s pre-E3 show took place Thursday at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City and gave attendees a chance to sample some lower profile titles.

Games included:

  • Jimmie Johnson’s Anything With an Engine: The game’s developers credit NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson for helping out the game’s design, but there’s no way for an observer to miss Mario Kart’s strong influence. “Anything” puts players in crazy vehicles and racers get to shoot pizzas (instead of turtle shells) at each other. That said, I raced around a barnyard-themed track and it seemed fun. The game is set for a fall release “for all three major home consoles,” which I assume are not the Neo-Geo, Intellivision nor Atari 2600.
  • Puddle: This is a rather clever – and insanely difficult – game based on fluid dynamics. I tried the PlayStation Move version and had a chance to fail at the challenge of guiding a puddle of water through a maze filled with flaming obstacles that evaporated my puddle character. The idea is to twist the Move from side to side and let simulated gravity do the rest. Another level on display featured a slimy puddle, instead of a watery one. The title is set for a summer release via PlayStation Network and XBox Live, although the XBox version won’t have motion controls.
  • Skullgirls: Like “Anything,” this one comes from an indie house called Autumn Development. The title is a three-on-three “Marvel vs. Capcom” styled fighter with cartoony – and jiggly – female characters. The exception, however, is Peacock, a crazy woman designed like an old Looney Toons character with a ridiculous amount of weapons at her disposal. She may have cult potential if the game catches on.


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Lucy Lawless’ voice to be heard in Hunted: The Demon’s Forge

Lucy Lawless, formerly of “Xena: Warrior Princess” and currently appearing on “Spartacus: Lords of the Arena,” will voice a character in the forthcoming “Hunted: The Demon’s Forge,” Bethesda Softworks announced.

Lawless’ new character is Seraphine, an “adventurer-turned-temptress” who leads game protagonists Caddoc and E’lara “into a dark and
twisted adventure with promises of great wealth and power.”

Hunted is scheduled for a June 1 release on PC, PlayStation3 and XBox.

Additionally, a Lucy Lawless news item gives me an excuse to embed this clip.

Lisa: Xena can’t fly.
Lucy Lawless: I told you, I’m not Xena. I’m Lucy Lawless.

Dude! Marvel vs. Capcom 3 in Los Angeles

If ridiculousness is a virtue, the designers behind “Marvel vs. Capcom 3″ are video game saints.

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The game, its full title is “Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” appears to be based on the belief that wackier is better. Capcom’s “Super Street Fighter IV” wasn’t exactly an exercise in subtlety, but to play MvC3 is to play an electronic equivalent of a caffeine rush.

Remember Jolt Cola? This game is like a six-pack of the stuff, so this writer is going to crack open an imaginary bottle and get to work.

Details after the jump:


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