Sure, there have always been alternatives to Twitch out there (such as YouTube Live), but none of these has really ever taken off to the magnitude that Twitch has. Well, many have said that if one company stood a chance to try and shake things up, it might be Valve. Indeed, I recall earlier this year wondering why Steam didn’t have a built-in video recorder or live-streamer. After all, it is a powerful client, so those features just felt like they should be included.
Well, Steam has kicked off a beta feature in their client whereby people on a user’s friends list can opt to “watch them” play whatever game they are playing. Likewise, if that person wants to stream publicly, they can change a setting to allow their stream to appear for others to see on the appropriate pages on Steam. Users can use their microphones/headset to offer commentary as they play and they can see what others are saying in a chat log, not unlike what Twitch has to offer. Yet, as of right now, these streams are only live, and therefore once you are done playing, the stream is gone forever. Valve has stated that this is only currently the case, which may imply that they will later offer the ability to export your stream data to YouTube if you desire.
I, for one, would like to see them also include a video recording option, and hopefully they will add that in a future update to their client as well. In the meantime, though, anyone can test out this feature by opting in on the beta version of the client. So, give it a try and see what you think!
Since earlier this year, there’s been a lot of talk about YouTube finally supporting videos recorded and encoded at 60 frames-per-second. In fact, this option has been available for several major companies’ YouTube channels as well as a few of the very popular YouTubers out there, like Total Biscuit. However, as of October 29, 2014, this option is available to all YouTube users!
Many people will question the need for video beyond 30 frames-per-second. After all, they may argue, isn’t 24 frames-per-second the standard for normal film? While this sort of frame-rate is fine for professionally-produced TV shows and films, keep in mind that most of that makes good use of motion blur to further stylize the appearance. But, the fact is, 24 or even 30 frames-per-second is far from true-to-life. For a while now, some TV manufacturers have been faking higher frequencies by doubling frames (which is often the case when producing 60 fps film anyway), but you can easily spot the difference between something that is true 120 Hz and something that is simply a doubling trick to produce that.
But, in the case of YouTube, you’ll now be able to see fast-motion video as it was originally meant to be seen. Moreover, videos that are slowed down to show of something really cool will look much better because there are twice the actual frames to work with on a slow-down. Thus, video can be far more precise.
Not only is this great for those that are filming fast motion and complex scenes, but this is fantastic for the gaming community of Let’s Players. Now, you’ll be able to fully capture what you see on the screen and deliver that to your audience, but be warned: encoding at 60 fps not only takes twice the traditional file-size (in most cases), but also requires a lot more computing and encoding power!
Twenty-five years ago today, back on December 17, 1987, the first game in what became a huge Capcom franchise was released. The original “Mega Man” was a game that really changed things up, giving players the choice to decide what levels they wanted to tackle, giving them new weapons for defeating foes, and presenting them with an interesting new futuristic world to fight to save. The first game was popular enough to spawn six major sequels on the NES and then go on to cover titles on all the major platforms over the years. Even if the series seems somewhat in limbo because of major changes that have happened over at Capcom here in the last couple of years, the company still claims that the character is important to them.
Throughout the next year, I’d like to do certain special highlights on different parts of the series, varying from discussions about the lore of the different series, showcasing different Robot Masters I like, and even doing some Let’s Play videos of various games in the series. In fact, I intend to do a video of this recent game, “Street Fighter X Mega Man.”
But, enough of that! As the title of this post implies, Capcom‘s little surprise for the Blue Bomber’s 25th birthday is now available for download. This title, called “Street Fighter X Mega Man,” celebrates the anniversaries of both Mega Man and the Street Fighter series. What started out as a fan-game quickly evolved into a full-fledged commercial product, albeit the game is free for everyone to enjoy. With the cancellations of major titles like “Mega Man Universe” and “Mega Man Legends 3,” at least the company realizes that they owe the fans something. And, execs at the company claim that this is only the beginning of special things we will see throughout the year for Mega Man!
Whether that is true or not will remain to be seen, but for now, head on over to Capcom-Unity, get the free game, and kick some butt!
Recently, it was announced that the channel G4 was going to cease operations and be rebranded as the Esquire channel in the first-half of 2013. While this was certainly news to some, this seemed something that was in the works for a while, especially considering that “Attack of the Show!” and “XPlay” were both cancelled in October of 2012.
The decision to rebrand the channel comes from a desire to aim it towards the “modern male” and therefore it will feature programs about travel, lifestyle, fashion, cooking, and, yes, gaming.
Was this change necessary, and how do others feel about it?
Reaction among members of the gaming community seems mixed so far, with some people going so far as to say that they never liked G4 in the first place, saying it was a dumbed-down version of Tech TV that was aimed at “brain-dead 12-year-olds.” This reaction may be a bit harsh, but one thing remains clear: This is certainly a bold change and will likely cost that network most of whatever gaming audience they had.
As you guys likely know, I’ve been pretty worried for a while here that we wouldn’t see anything significant for Mega Man’s 25th anniversary (December 17, 2012). In fact, this seems to be the general feeling that most of the fan community has had lately. Yet, today I saw a nifty post over at Protodude’s Rockman Corner that, upon reading, was quite shocking: Apparently, Capcom is releasing a free PC game on December 17 for all fans around the world to enjoy.
What kind of PC game, you ask?
Titled “Street Fighter X Mega Man,” this game is an 8-bit styled Mega Man game that pits the titular hero against characters from the Street Fighter series. Sound familiar? Well, this project saw its origins in a fan game that was being developed by Seow Zong Hui (Sonic88 on Youtube), but when Seow approached Christian Svensson at EVO 2012 to show him the project, Svensson decided to get others involved and take what was originally meant to be a fan-game and give it the official Capcom seal of approval.
That’s a damn good feather in Seow’s cap, if you ask me.
The game, which is due out on December 17, will celebrate both Mega Man and Street Fighter‘s 25th anniversaries and will be free for all fans to download and enjoy!
If you are a fan of “Minecraft,” you might be happy to know that Threadless has some pretty awesome fan-designed T-Shirts for sale that were inspired by the cult game. These could make for something fun for you to wear or, if you know someone that loves the game but is otherwise hard to shop for, you could pick this up for them as a neat holiday gift!
Their collection is pretty large, so if you are interested, head to their “Threadless Loves Minecraft” page and take a look!
With the long-running MMO “City of Heroes” scheduled to shut its doors on November 30, a very large and vocal group of fans have risen to the occasion to encourage NCSoft to keep the game running or, failing that, to find someone else who would be willing to take the rights of the game, revive it, and take it to new levels. In a world flooded with MMORPGs, many of which are mediocre, it’s easy to see why a company might choose to fold one game that was only marginally profitable, or which was deemed to have reached its fulfillment, and focus on new, more modern projects. Yet, “City of Heroes” is a game that really changed how some people viewed online games by changing the mold a bit. Even though “Champions Online” proved to be a decent successor to this original title, the game still has a strong and dedicated following more than eight years after its release.
On November 27 it was revealed that the “Save City of Heroes” campaign had tapped author Mercedes Lackey to write a letter to the Walt Disney corporation to see if they might consider picking up the rights to the game. After all, she says, “We believe that Disney and City of Heroes are a perfect match; Disney now owns Marvel and two impending Marvel MMOs which are slated to be mirror opposites of the cooperative, community gameplay fostered by City of Heroes.” Lackey goes on to say that Disney does a great job with community relations and fostering a loyal fan-base, something, she says, that NCSoft has failed to do. While no one would likely argue against Disney being good at fostering loyalty, some might take issue with stating that ArenaNet and NCSoft didn’t do that good of a job with it as they seemed to handle “Guild Wars” and “Guild Wars 2″ quite nicely.
Will fans be able to convince someone to pick up the game so that it doesn’t go away forever? That’s hard to say, but Disney does now own Marvel, so it would seem that a super-hero MMO wouldn’t be bad for them to pick up.
For more information on the “Save City of Heroes” campaign, visit their website at: