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Old News - October 2003 Contents


Friday - October 31, 2003   <7:00 PM CST>


New GTA3 XBox Preview   <7:00 PM CST - schu>
IGN released another GTA3 preview to accompany their earlier Double Pack previews.  This article gives some more in-depth information into the button layout, among other details.

Manhunt Hands On   <7:00 PM CST - schu>
IGN posted a new Manhunt hands-on article yesterday giving us the first comprehensive glimpse into Rockstar's upcoming release.  The article includes new screenshots and loads of new information.  Thanks to zeppelincheetah.

Fox, UPN & Rockstar   <7:00 PM CST - schu>
If you've been watching Fox or UPN lately you may have noticed Rockstar logos, posters, and stickers in a few of the different shows on both Fox and UPN.  I've heard reports that in at least one episode of "The Mullets" there were either Rockstar or GTA posters in the background at various points throughout the show.  Pietak wrote in and mentioned that he spotted some Rockstar product placement on FOX, appearing on both "Stan Hooper" and "The OC".  Apparently there is a Rockstar logo on the restaurant menu at the beginning of the Stan Hooper show and The OC features a Rockstar logo in the main character's bedroom.  Thanks to Pietak and Gate.

Announcements   <7:00 PM CST - schu>

  • GameSpot released a transcript of Take2's introductory comments for the 20th Annual Technology Conference.  There really isn't too much new in the article, but it does give an overall layout of Take2's release schedule next year, including the pending releases of GTA: Next, The Warriors, and other titles.
  • Happy Halloween!


Thursday - October 30, 2003   <6:45 PM CST>


GTA:Next In Q4 2004   <6:45 PM CST - schu>
Take2 has officially announced that the next GTA will be released in Q4 2004 (who want's to bet on October 2004? Anyone?). For the uninitiated, Take2's fiscal year ends at the end of October and like clockwork almost every GTA release has been in October giving Take2 a financial boost at the end of their fiscal year and a nice start to the next fiscal year. The announcement was made at the 20th Annual Technology Conference in New York City. I'm still trying to hunt down a transcript for the event but no luck so far. Other than that they didn't say much. The next iteration of GTA has not been named yet, in fact, other than the rough release date, no one knows anything about it. Rumors abound, but nothing official yet.  Thanks to XaeroN9ne, Starving Russian, JCronic, and zeppelincheetah.

New Version of MTA:VC   <6:45 PM CST - schu>
The guys over at MultiTheftAuto have released a new version of MTA:VC, v0.2.2.  Details and download information can be found at www.mtavc.com.  Thanks to S3KT0R.

Japan Awards GTA:VC   <6:45 PM CST - schu>
Japan's Consumer Entertainment Software Association (CESA) recently announced the the winners of their 2002/2003 video game awards. GTA Vice City was given an award for Best Foreign Video Game (Global Award) and considering how many titles were produced outside of Japan, that ain 't bad :).

GTA Xbox Preview   <6:45 PM CST - schu>
GameSpy released a new GTA Xbox Double Pack preview today. Not much new really, but a decent run down on the new features and a small selection of Xbox GTA3 & VC screenshots. In case you weren't aware, the new feature list for the Xbox includes:

  • Enhanced Graphics ("Specular lighting, reflection maps, texture re-insertation, higher polygon models, and an enhanced particle system.")
  • Enhanced Sound (Re mastered Audio, Dolby 5.1 Support, Custom MP3 Radio Stations)
  • Alternate Control Layout (Analog shoulder buttons used to accelerate/brake)
  • Performance (Faster load times and better frame rates)

Grand Theft Auto: Scarface
  <6:45 PM CST - schu>
Game Chronicles Magazine recently posted a great article detailing some of the many similarities between Scarface and Vice City.  Check it out at GCM.  Thanks to JetSetFuture (no name provided).


Friday - October 24, 2003   <8:15 PM CST>


PS2 Double Pack In Stores   <8:15 PM CST - schu>
The PS2 version of the GTA Double Pack should be in stores in both North America and Europe by the time you read this.  From all that I've read I can't quite tell if the Double Pack adds anything new to the PS2 version, or if it's just a bundled package of the two original versions.  As you know, the XBox version (due out November 4th) will contain some new features as well as updated graphics to take advantage of the XBox hardware.  Now if they'd just drop the price of the XBox so I could check it out :) ...

GTA Lawsuit   <8:15 PM CST - schu>
I'm not going to comment on this too much since I already mentioned it in the past, but a few new articles regarding the lawsuit are out there if anyone is interested:

Thanks to Mike and mattias.

New GTA Sites   <8:15 PM CST - schu>

  <8:15 PM CST - schu>

  • Matt posted an editorial on the free versions of GTA and Hidden & Dangerous, petitioning Take2/Rockstar to release the source code.  I'm not sure if it will ever happen, but the article is definitely worth a read.  Give it a read over at Curmudgeon Gamer.
  • The site for the GTA clone Payback has been updated once again with new information on the GBA version of the game.
  • Alastair sent me some more information on VIS, apparently they aren't based in Dundee but they have an office there.  "Vis are (were) actually based in Dunfermline in Scotland, although they do have an office in Dundee which opened about 3 years ago.

    Due to their lack of successes, they no longer have their London office and I think Dunfermline office may have closed now as well.

    They were due to be opening an office here in Edinburgh, but I've heard nothing recently about this. They still have their Dundee office though."


Wednesday - October 15, 2003   <11:30 PM CST>


MaxPayne 2 Ships   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
MaxPayne 2 for the PC has shipped to stores so it should be available any day now. Check out the previews below for more information:




Manhunt Trailer #2!   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
The second Manhunt trailer has been released by Rockstar and is finally available on their site.  Insiders can also view the trailer over at IGN.  This trailer is much longer than the previous one and this time around it drops some hints into the back story.  You can find more out about Manhunt at the official Rockstar site, the Manhunt spoof site, or check out one of the previews:

GTA Xbox Gets MP3 Support   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
GameSpot is reporting that the Xbox versions of GTA3 and Vice City will both support custom MP3 playlists. It also sounds as if Xbox will support multiple radio stations, rather than just one. I also just noticed that GTA's own Mugwum also reported on this over at EuroGamer.  Check out more on the XBox Double Pack at Rockstar, IGN, and at Gamespot.  (This is beginning to look like one massive IGN/GameSpot ad)...

SOE2 In Development   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
VIS Entertainment recently announced that State of Emergency 2 is in development. According to the article on GameSpot, VIS is currently shopping around for publishers, so the next version of SOE might not be published by Rockstar. Something I didn't realize until now is that VIS is based in Dundee, Scotland, and as you might recall, Dundee is the place GTA was originally created (back in 1997 when Rockstar North was called DMA Design - before their move to Edinburgh). I never realized Dundee was such a gaming development hub.

VC Still In UK Charts   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
Vice City is still hanging on in the UK Top 20 and GTA3 popped up in the UK Top 20 Budget Charts. Check out all the UK chart listings over at the ELSPA.

$99 PS2?   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
GameSpot and GameSpy are reporting that Sony's PS2 may drop to a price of $99 in mid-November, just in time for the holidays. The story was originally posted on Game Cube Advanced and cites an un-named executive working for the retail chain, Target. SCEA did not confirm or deny the price drop so I guess we'll have to wait and see. Check out GameSpy's article for a more in-depth analysis.

PS3 In 2006   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
The GameSpy article I mentioned above also reiterates the prevailing rumor that Sony's PS3 will debut in 2006. I suppose the main question is, "Will the next big step in GTA development be on the PS3, and will it be a North American launch title?" I guess it's pointless to even ask because we probably won't hear anything about until early 2006 :).


Thursday - October 9, 2003   <10:30 PM CST>


Rockstar News   <10:30 PM CST - schu>

  • Inside VC's Development
    If you haven't visited
    Rockstar North's site for awhile then you should give The Lab another look over.  The guys at Rockstar North have added lots of new content giving a glimpse into the development of Vice City.
    • The fascinating character development progression of Tommy, Lance, Ken, Avery and many others, from rough sketches all the way up to the finished illustrations you know and love.
    • Vehicle development of such modes of transport as the Sand King, Faggio, Maverick and more, highlighted by screen captures of 3DSMax works-in-progress, wireframes, and finished models.
    • A study of the audio design production science behind in-game helicopter noise. A subtle, but as you will see, not so simple sound effect.
    • Animations and motion capture - see Vice City's beloved characters and landmark vistas in motion, evolving from simple wireframe to full rendered glory.
    • 360 degree tours of the lush, textured environments of the Malibu club, Ken's legal office, and the modest oceanfront hotel Tommy once called home.
    • A look at the star studded Vice City voiceover sessions.
    • A breakdown of pedestrian voiceover audio design. Peds say the damndest things..
  • XBox Double Pack
    Also in Rockstar news, both the GTA3 and Vice City parts of the XBox GTA Double Pack site are now open with some nice shots of what we can expect from the XBox versions.  Now I just need to figure out how I'm going to scrape together the cash to buy and XBox.  Any Microsoft employees out there got a free one laying around?  (yeah right)...
  • Max Payne 2
    Max Payne 2 is gold and will be in stores next week!  IGN has a decent "hands on" article with lots of shots and movies.  For more info, check the official site @ rockstargames.com/maxpayne2.  
  • Manhunt
    Manhunt trailer #2 is due out any day now.  Make sure you explore the official Manhunt site thoroughly, there is lots of hidden content, just start by clicking on the open door.  Thanks to zeppelincheetah for that bit of information.

Announcements   <10:30 PM CST - schu>

  • Finally back online, once a-fu*king-gain...  Apparently the cable company's profile for me was screwed up so they turned everything off thinking I hadn't paid.  I like how it takes them 2 seconds to turn the sh*t off but it takes them 2 weeks to turn it back on.  My email account is a little full at the moment so I'm trying to work through everything.  If you sent in an update and it hasn't appeared yet, please let me know.
  • Last bit news is G! related...  It looks like Gouranga.com will be making yet another move to a new server.  I can't say much, but basically our current host is becoming problematic.  I already have a new host lined up, I'm just trying to get in contact with all the hosted sites to make some arrangements so the switch is as quick and painless as possible.  If you have a hosted site and are reading this, please contact me for more details.


Wednesday - October 1, 2003   <11:30 PM CST>


Manhunt Trailer Released   <11:30 PM CST - schu>
Rockstar Games recently released the first official Manhunt trailer.You can grab the trailer and the latest screens and information from the official Manhunt website or over at IGN.  The trailer is pretty short and basically gives you a very brief look at the game.  Thanks to Andrew and Jon.

In other Rockstar news, we finally have release dates for MaxPayne2 which is coming out for PC in about two weeks (Oct 15), while PS2 and XBox owners will be waiting at little longer for the December 3rd console release.