News
4 Comments

Activision closing UK-based Call of Duty mobile studio

The Blast Furnace, the Leeds, U.K.-based Activision subsidiary that was created to develop mobile games, will close its doors by the end of this month, Activision confirmed to MCV. The decision follows a 30-day consultation period with The Blast Furnace's 47 employees, as required by U.K. law. "As we focus on our 2014 operating plan, we are aligning our resources against our anticipated business requirements," an Activision representative told Polygon in January. "We are exploring all our options regarding [The Blast Furnace]." In a statement to MCV, Activision said it had been unable to figure out a plan that would prevent the closure of The Blast Furnace, after "having explored a range of options, including a potential sale of the business." The consultation period has concluded,...

News
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Pitfall! now free-to-play on iOS, update adds new Relic Rush mode

The iOS port of Pitfall!, the Temple Run-inspired remake of the classic 1982 Atari game, became permanently free-to-play today and added a new mode called Relic Rush, according to a post on One of Swords. A promotion that began recently to temporarily reduce the price to free is now permanent. Today's Relic Rush mode update introduces time trials, more hidden treasures and gives Pitfall Harry's outfits the ability to provide bonuses. Released earlier this year to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the original, the game is the first created by developer Blast Furnace, formerly known as Activision Leeds. Be sure to check out our review of Pitfall!, which called it a "fun, bombastic and greedy reimagining of the 1980s original" before you download the now-free game on the iOS App Store....

Culture
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MythBusters' Adam Savage talks video games, from Pong to LAN parties

MythBusters' Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage joined the crew at Tested earlier this year, and Savage later began a brief, semi-regular podcast with the tech site's original editors, Will Smith and Norman Chan. The show doesn't have a name yet — even after more than 15 episodes — but the three forge on, and on the most recent episode of Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project, they discussed Savage's history playing video games. Savage recalled playing Pong as a pre-teen boy, and later enjoying titles like Pitfall! on his sister's boyfriend's Atari 2600, but video games didn't come to shape his youth in a major way — likely because he never had "unfettered access" to them. "It's not like I made a decision like 'I'd rather be doing something else,'" he explained to Chan and Smith....

News
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Activision-Blizzard launches social games platform

Activision-Blizzard is launching its own social and mobile game platform after announcing two new Skylanders mobile games today. Named Activate, the mobile and social platform will put Activision in competition with the likes of Gree's OpenFeint and DeNA's Mobage. Inside Mobile Apps reports that Activate will allow users to access mobile games by logging in with their Facebook credentials or with an Activate account. This will then give them access to their friends list. Some games, like the two upcoming Skylanders games, will support cloud storage, which will allow users to access their games on any iOS device. Inside Mobile Apps adds that Activate will be getting social multiplayer features later this year. Activision-Blizzard opened its first mobile-only studio, The Blast...

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Activision's mobile studio renamed The Blast Furnace, adds former Rockstar Leeds president

The Blast Furnace is the new name of Activision Leeds, the publisher's only development house dedicated solely to mobile games, which recently hired former Rockstar Leeds president Gordon Hall. Activision originally opened its Leeds studio last November, and previously revealed the developer would be working on mobile and handheld Call of Duty games. Hall is the co-founder of Mobius Entertainment, a developer of Game Boy Advance titles, and comes to The Blast Furnace from a post as president of Rockstar Leeds, a studio known for handheld and mobile versions of games such as Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars and The Warriors. He will act as the head of The Blast Furnace, and as chief creative officer for Activision Mobile. "We have to make sure we're innovating," Hall told GamesBeat,...

Pitfall! Releases
North America
  • iOS
    • Released 08/09/2012
    • Publisher Activision
    • Developer The Blast Furnace
    • Score 6
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