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This is how you get a lightsaber in Disney Infinity

There is a way to get Star Wars' iconic lightsaber in Disney Infinity — it just takes a bit of effort and a lot of cash. In the video above, Stephen Alva Wood of YouTube channel Nerdflip runs down how to obtain the coveted item. By using all 29 NFC figurines within the game and raising all characters to level one, players can unlock a green lightsaber, a weapon used in the space epic by Jedi including Luke Skywalker and Yoda. According to Wood, unlocking the lightsaber means players have spent at least $500 on Disney Infinity figurines at this point. In late 2012, Disney purchased Lucasfilm — and the rights to the Star Wars franchise — in a $4 billion acquisition deal. More recently, the Disney Store Facebook page responded to a comment from a fan that there were no plans to add Star...
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Toys for Bob and the story behind Skylanders

Beasts are peeking out of every nook and cranny in the office, a crazy infestation of plastic chaos.The figurines sit on shelves, hang on walls, tumble on desks in states of unpainted nakedness, dismantled and incoherent. They gurn, snarl and claw in an infinity of static poses. This is the place where the little plastic creatures of Activision's breakout monster hit Skylanders are conceived and birthed, the headquarters of Toys for Bob, a tiki-pirate-ship-themed ex-aircraft hanger in Marin County, California. Since its introduction back in 2011, the Skylanders video game and toy series has generated upwards of $2 billion in lifetime sales. It is one of the top 20 game franchises of all time, with 175 million toy sales. The Skylanders monsters have captured the imaginations of...
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Nintendo releasing Princess Peach-themed Wii Remote this month

Nintendo will launch a new Wii Remote Plus controller later this month mimicking the iconic dress colors of Princess Peach, the company announced this morning. The Princess Peach remote will launch in stores in late April for $39.99 each and is designed similarly to the Mario and Luigi controllers. The main body of the controller (shown above and below) is pink with a golden crown design over the remote's speaker. The middle buttons on the controller are blue and the plus pad is golden-yellow, colors that reflect her jewelry and crown. The remote is compatible with all Wii and Wii U games including upcoming kart racer Mario Kart 8, which launches on May 30.
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New Mario title in development at Nintendo EAD Tokyo

Nintendo EAD Tokyo has begun developing the next Mario title, the studio revealed in an interview with Edge Online. Producer Yoshiaki Koizumi could not confirm if the next Mario iteration is in development for Nintendo 3DS or Wii U, adding that "we've already started approaching our next challenge" and "there's still a lot more room for discovery and invention, and we'll continue to propose new and exciting game mechanics going into the future." Co-director and EAD Tokyo team leader Kenta Motokura mentioned that the development team "might need to make even more use of the GamePad" if the new Mario title will see a launch on the Wii U platform. Nintendo legend Shigeru Miyamoto revealed last November that there is "little chance" for him to oversee or be heavily involved with the...
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Pokemon Charizard and Greninja join Super Smash Bros. roster

Pokemon pals Charizard and Greninja will be playable characters in Super Smash Bros., the next entry in Nintendo's fighting franchise, as revealed today by a Nintendo Direct Presentation. Charizard was introduced in the very first generation of Pokemon, Pokemon Blue and Pokemon Red. The fire-based Pokemon is the third evolution of Charmander, one of the generation's three starters. Water and dark-type Pokemon Greninja, meanwhile made its debut in Pokemon X and Pokemon Y. Greninja is the final form of Froakie, one of the sixth generation's three starting Pokemon. You can watch Charizard and Greninja make their fighting debut on at the end of the presentation on Nintendo's official channel. Charizard and Greninja join two other playable Pokemon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and...
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Super Smash Bros. hits 3DS this summer and Wii U this winter

Super Smash Bros. will arrive on Nintendo 3DS this summer and Wii U this winter, director Masahiro Sakurai announced during a Nintendo Direct event today. The 3DS version will run at 60 frames per second in stereoscopic 3D, Sakurai said. Assist characters will run at 30 frames per second. "New Super Smash Bros. games are a major event for video game fans everywhere, and present an experience that only Nintendo can offer," said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America's executive vice president of sales and marketing. "Fans have two launches to look forward to this year, and they will want to get in plenty of practice with the Nintendo 3DS version so that they can be prepared for the launch of the Wii U game later in the year." Super Smash Bros. is headed to Wii U and Nintendo 3DS with with...
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Marvel teases Avengers in Disney Infinity '2.0 Edition' (update)

Marvel's Avengers appear to be on their way to Disney Interactive's Disney Infinity, according to a teaser trailer released today by Marvel Entertainment. The 27-second clip, named "Get Ready to Assemble," shows Captain America's shield flying through the world of Disney Infinity, zooming past characters like Dash from The Incredibles, Sully from Monsters, Inc. and Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean films. A Disney Infinity logo pops up at the end of the video, along with a label mentioning a "2.0 Edition." We're reaching out to Disney Interactive for more details, and will update this article with any information we receive. The Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel Entertainment in August 2009 for $4 billion. John Blackburn, CEO of Disney Infinity developer...
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GameSpy Technology shutting down May 31 (update)

GameSpy Technology, the Glu Mobile-owned service that provides multiplayer functionality for dozens of games on consoles, computers and mobile devices, will shut down as of May 31, according to the company's website. "Effective May 31, 2014, GameSpy will cease providing all hosting services for all games still using GameSpy," the statement reads. "Thanks for a great ride!" The company had already stopped licensing out its services to publishers as of Jan. 1, 2013. GameSpy Technology has existed in some form since 1997, when it debuted as a listing service for Quake server IP addresses. It is a separate entity from the gaming site GameSpy, which was shut down by its parent company, Ziff Davis, in February 2013. The service offers features such as multiplayer matchmaking, leaderboards...
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Amazon displays Metacritic scores on video game listings

Online retailer Amazon has begun rolling out scores from the popular game review aggregation site Metacritic alongside select video game listings. The Metacritic score can either be displayed below and to the right of the game's box art graphic or above the game's price next to Amazon customer reviews. The Metacritic ratings can be found on games across all platforms, although not all games and versions have a rating attached. We have reached out to Metacritic representatives and Amazon for comment. Valve's distribution platform Steam has long offered Metacritic ratings alongside its game listings. The company recently set a feature live where Steam users can rate, recommend and review the titles they've played through the Steam Community. The Steam Reviews data displays below games...
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Check out First 4 Figures' Twilight Princess Zelda statue, available for pre-order

First 4 Figures revealed Princess Zelda today, a 17-inch "Master Arts" statue available for pre-order and based on her highness' Twilight Princess incarnation. Today's reveal of the quarter scale, hand-painted statue will be limited to 2,500 worldwide. It's scheduled for a Q4 2014 release at $349.99, and those interested can reserve theirs for $10 at the product's official page. Twilight Princess Zelda is the latest in First 4 Figures' series from the game. Others include Link on Epona, Wolf Link and Midna and Zant. You can also browse First 4 Figures official site to see statues based on Assassin's Creed, Doctor Who, Metroid and more.
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Minor Wii U system software 4.1.0 update introduces system stability improvements

The latest release of the Wii U system software, version 4.1.0 U, is now live and introduces improvements to the console's usability and overall system stability, Nintendo announced on its support page. According to the minor update's release notes, the latest increases general system stability and "other minor adjustments have been made to enhance the user experience." Nintendo's last system software update for the Wii U, version 4.0.O U, went live last September. It added numerous new features, such as the ability to output the display of original Wii software to the Wii U GamePad's touchscreen and the option to automatically download demos of software through SpotPass.
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Animal Crossing's creators on new console versions, mobile connectivity and fatigue

The creators of Animal Crossing see the game as more than just a cheerful life simulator, they consider it a communication tool, where players share experiences with in-game characters and other real-life players.That may be why the producer and co-director of the series latest entry see Animal Crossing as a good fit for Nintendo's plans to complement its traditional games with smaller — sometimes promotional — smartphone and mobile experiences. In an interview with Animal Crossing producer Katsuya Eguchi and Animal Crossing: New Leaf co-director Aya Kyogoku, we discussed the future of the franchise, including smartphone interactivity, the series' future on home consoles and keeping the experience fresh. When we asked how well suited Animal Crossing might be for smartphones, Eguchi...
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McDonald's Happy Meals getting exclusive Skylanders Swap Force figures

Skylanders Swap Force publisher Activision is bringing eight exclusive Skylanders figures to McDonald's Happy Meals starting this Friday, Activision announced today. For one week, from March 28 through April 4, participating McDonald's restaurants in the U.S. and Puerto Rico will offer a new Skylanders-themed Happy Meal, and each one will come with one of the eight toys. The eight characters in question are Chompy, Eruptor, Free Ranger, Freeze Blade, Magna Charge, Prism Break, Rattle Shake and Wash Buckler. (The figures are just plastic toys inspired by the characters, not actual Skylanders that can be used with the video games.) Each of the Skylanders Happy Meals will also include two coupons: one for $10 off the Swap Force Starter Pack, and the other for $1 off a Skylanders...
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Redbox online rental service to begin offering Wii U, PS4 and Xbox One games by April

Online rental service Redbox will begin offering PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Wii U games in the coming months, according to a recent update to the website as caught by NeoGAF. Starting March 25, Wii U releases Super Mario 3D World, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Super Luigi Bros. U and Lego City Undercover will become available through the website. Versions of Call of Duty: Ghosts, Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag and Thief will later be made available for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One systems on April 1. Redbox has since deleted these next-gen updates from its website; However, images of the service's PS4, Xbox One and Wii U plans, as seen above, remain available online. We've contacted the service for details of its full schedule of next-gen rental releases and will update if more...
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Nintendo working towards 3DS support for Unity, more than 60 Unity games coming to the Wii U

Unity Technologies and Nintendo are looking at adding Nintendo 3DS support to cross-platform development software Unity, Nintendo of America's licensing department senior manager Damon Baker told Siliconera. "We've had those discussions and we are definitely looking at that," Baker said. "Our priority was to get the Wii U build [of Unity] up and done and ready. Because we need a test environment for it, it's taken a while for Unity to get finalized on Wii U, so that we can actually test against it. So that has been made available now and that is why we've got all of these [game] candidates waiting in the wings that are just going through the submission process at this point." Nintendo offers Wii U developers a free license to develop in the Unity engine. The toolkit gives developers...
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Report: 'Bourne Identity' director in final negotiations for Splinter Cell film

Doug Liman (Go, Swingers, The Bourne Identity) is in final negotiations to direct the feature film based on Ubisoft's Splinter Cell, which, The Hollywood Reporter writes, may enter production in August with a tentative 2015 release window. The Dark Knight Rises' Bane actor Tom Hardy is rumored to star as protagonist Sam Fisher and The International writer Eric Warren Singer is tapped to write the script, according to previous reports. Basil Iwanyk of Thunder Road Pictures and Jean-Julien Baronnet of Ubisoft Motion Pictures, an arm of Ubisoft overlooking its franchises' film and television productions, are collaborating with New Regency to develop the movie. The project, The Hollywood Reporter writes, was formally being developed by DreamWorks and Paramount with Peter Berg attached...
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Watch Epic's just-released Unreal Engine 4 in action

Epic Games released a series of videos today showing off Unreal Engine 4, its just-released graphics engine. Press play above for a five-minute trailer that highlights the bullet point features of Unreal Engine 4. You'll see rendered examples of full scene HDR reflections and the engine's ability to put thousands of dynamics lights into each scene. In-program features like surface editors and cascade effects that can turn fire from orange to purple are also on display. Epic revealed Unreal Engine 4's business model earlier today alongside its release. Developers get "access to everything" with a $19 monthly subscription. Epic will also collect a flat, 5 percent royalty fee on UE4 games. Head over to the official Unreal Engine YouTube page to see dozens of tutorial videos that cover...
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Animal Crossing: New Leaf director says team diversity, communication core to its success

Diversity on the development team behind Animal Crossing: New Leaf — and drawing upon the ideas of men and women from a variety of ages and backgrounds — was important to the game's appeal to a broad range of players, New Leaf project leader Aya Kyogoku said at her GDC panel today.Her colleague at Nintendo, Animal Crossing producer Katsuya Eguchi, echoed that opinion, saying diversity on the New Leaf team contributed not only to the diversity of content in the game, it better represented the game's target audience. "When I was starting in the game industry, it wasn't uncommon to be the only woman on the entire team," Kyogoku said. "I always felt welcome and I never felt awkward. In my years at Nintendo, I have come to discover that when there are women in a variety of roles on the...
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Band, DJ and Guitar Hero DLC sales ending April 1

Downloadable content for the Band Hero, DJ Hero and Guitar Hero franchises will no longer be offered for sale as of April 1, 2014, according to a post on the official Guitar Hero Facebook page. Guitar Hero for iOS will also be pulled from sale April 1. It's available for $0.99 in the iOS App Store. Game servers will remain online, and the announcement won't affect any DLC previously purchased. Through March 31, "selected songs and tracks" will be discounted up to 50 percent on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii. Details and songs are available in each console's store. The franchise of rhythm games that blended plastic instruments with rock songs began in 2005 with Harmonix's Guitar Hero. Guitar Hero 2 followed in 2006 and the franchise expand over the next few years with games like G...
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Talk isn't cheap when it comes to Affordable Space Adventures' multiplayer

"Sorry for blowing up our ship." My partner and I traded sheepish apologies more than once during my multiplayer experience with Affordable Space Adventures. With me navigating the ship's engines and him in the captain's chair, we quickly learned that surviving the game's clouded, dark world takes a little talk and a lot of working together. Like its multiplayer, Affordable Space Adventures is a collaboration — a joint effort between Knytt Underground creator Nicklas "Nifflas" Nygren and Spin the Bottle: Bumpie's Party developer KnapNok Games. The Wii U title is loosely inspired by Henry Smith's Spaceteam, a mobile game in which players have to verbally communicate (mostly through shouting) to accomplish their goals. In Affordable Space Adventures, one player steers with the remote,...
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