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Friday, 30 May 2008 07:20

Ubidays 08 blows smoke up our DS

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Developer Ubisoft has begun its Ubidays 08 conference in Paris, here are the highlights including a ‘game’ to help you stop smoking.

French developer and publisher has kicked off the Paris leg of Ubidays 08 with a bunch of new game details.

First up is the return of the Prince of Persia, currently sans identifying subtitle at this time. 

The Prince has been leaping around the walls of Persian palaces for some time now, but Ubisoft are planning on a few extra elements coming to Xbox 360, PS3, and PC towards the end of 2008.  There will also be a Prince game designed specifically for the Nintendo DS launced around the same time.

“In so many ways the original Prince of Persia franchise set the standard for the action-adventure video game genre,” said Tony Key, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Ubisoft. “With the new Prince of Persia, we not only have a brand-new Prince, but an epic storyline and captivating universe that gives players a truly compelling gameplay experience that continues to elevate the genre to new heights.”

Promising a new open world structure and an AI ally Elika to accompany the Prince on his journey, the following is Ubisofts description of the new adventures story line:

Set in a land rooted in ancient Persian mythology, the Prince finds himself caught in an epic battle between the primal forces of light and darkness: the God of Light, Ormazd versus his brother Ahriman, the destructive God of Darkness. The Prince arrives just in time to witness the destruction of the legendary Tree of Life – an act which threatens to plunge the entire world into eternal darkness. Manifested in the form of the Corruption, a dark substance that physically contaminates the land and the skies, the Prince must partner with Elika, a deadly companion, to heal the world from the evil Corruption.

Next up Snowboarding.


It had to happen, and I for one am glad it was sooner rather than later.  A snowboarding game for the Wii that takes advantage of the Balance Board peripheral that came with Wii Fit.

Scheduled for release at the end of 2008 Shaun White Snowbording will be sliding down the virtual slopes of Xbox 360, PS3, PC and Wii in a variety of forms.

Here is the detail from the Ubisoft Press release:

Powered by the award-winning Assassin's Creed™ engine for Xbox 360 and the PLAYSTATION 3 system, Shaun White Snowboarding truly captures the action sports lifestyle. Shaun White Snowboarding is being developed from the ground up for the Wii system, taking full advantage of the Wii Balance Board™ accessory and featuring its own unique storyline and adventure with Shaun White.

“Shaun White Snowboarding will turn all of the traditional ideas and experiences of past action sports titles upside down,” said Tony Key, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Ubisoft. “The combination of Ubisoft’s innovation approach and the influence of Shaun’s lifestyle and perspective make this gaming experience like no other.”

Developed in close collaboration with Shaun White, Olympic Gold Medalist and eight-time X Games Gold Medalist, Shaun White Snowboarding allows players to enter a world of total freedom, where they can create their own experience and choose how, where, and with whom they want to ride.


Key Features of Shaun White Snowboarding for Xbox 360, the PLAYSTATION 3 system, and Windows-based PC:

* Open World Mountains: Choose how you ride in open-world mountains across the world. Conquer extreme peak conditions, create your own paths in the back country, or compete with fellow riders in the terrain parks.

* Your Friends Are Always Around: Play in a world where your friends are always around. Do your own runs on mountains populated by real gamers, or join your friends for a quick session from any mountain.

* More than Just Snowboarding: Have fun with your friends on and off the board! Throw snowballs, hike to access secret spots, film your friends doing ripping tricks. You can also upload your videos online to share with the world.

* Ride Your Way: Express yourself through tricks, riding styles, and highly customizable avatars – both in single-player and in the online world. Use the intuitive dual analog control to pull off a huge variety of tricks that express your style.

* Next-Gen Technology: Built on the Assassin's Creed engine, this game creates a massive world with gorgeous visuals and realistic NPC interactions. This is also the first time a snowboarding game is completely driven by physics instead of animation.

* Authentic Snowboarding: Ubisoft has worked closely with Shaun White to infuse the gaming experience with authenticity, personality and humor. Shaun is a friend and mentor in the game, and will help you with your skills. And, if you are deemed worthy, you may even be able to play as Shaun in the game …

Key features of Shaun White Snowboarding for the Wii system:

* Exclusive storyline: Everybody loves a road trip! You and your crew travel the world to participate in a variety of the largest and craziest events to become a world-renowned athlete. Life on the road to success wouldn’t be the same without the support of your friends, who will always be there to help you out and keep your head on your shoulders. Stand together with your friends - both in the game and in the living room - and you will be able to conquer the madness that fame brings.

* Go on a globetrotting adventure with Shaun White as your partner – Ubisoft worked in close contact with Shaun White in order to infuse the experience with the most authentic elements of his riding style, personality and sense of humor. Shaun will act as a good-natured friend and mentor to the player, hooking him up with the right friends to conquer challenges together, introduce him to new locales, or simply be around to share in a laugh.

* Wii Balance Board Integration – Get yourself into the game like never before by using the Wii Board to control your rider. Control your carves, jumps and grinds with the intuitiveness and fun of having a snowboard in your own living room.

* Everyone plays, no one waits – Engage in a seamlessly integrated multiplayer experience for two to four players, where every player is active in the game at all times.

* Get together your crew – In the world of snowboarding, it pays to have friends on your side. Your crew of friends will always be there to help you by offering you unique abilities to improve both your riding and keeping you grounded with friendly pranks; filming all the antics along the way.

* Fame and Respect - Getting your name out there by doing well as a pro snowboarder is bound to get you some recognition. As your fame grows, so too does your ability to take on bigger and bigger challenges, from new mountains to more prestigious events and competitions. Fame, however, isn’t everything. You’ll need to gain your friends’ respect by riding with style in order to gain their support; they will help you find hidden areas, share their favourite music tracks and keep you laughing.

Next up; Rayman Raving Rabbits TV Party


Those rascally rabbits are back, once again the Wii Balance Board can be used for rabbity fun.

From the Ubisoft press release:

Ubisoft announced that Rayman Raving Rabbids™ TV Party will launch for the Wii™ system and Nintendo DS™ system this holiday season.

Following the tradition of Rayman Raving Rabbids titles showcasing fun and innovative use of the Wii controllers, Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party will feature the Wii Balance Board™ accessory. The Rabbids plan to invade televisions worldwide, providing players with a variety of games and comedic exploits spoofing TV shows, pop culture and even advertisements. 

“The Rayman Raving Rabbids titles have been an immense success, entertaining the world over,” said Yves Guillemot, president and chief executive officer, Ubisoft. “The inclusion of the Wii Balance Board into the game was a huge source of inspiration for our development team and I guarantee you will see the Wii Balance Board used in ways that will be surprisingly unexpected!”

To date, the Rayman titles have sold more than 22 million units worldwide with their unique ability to reach all ages and demographics through their family friendly, innovative game play mechanics.

Further details about Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party will be unveiled at E3 2008

Lastly, kick the habit with Allen Carr Quit Smoking



Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking is a Nintendo DS title designed to follow the Allen Carr process that over 10 million smokers world wide have turned to.

The method removes the smoker’s belief that smoking provides them with any genuine pleasure or crutch, takes away the feeling of deprivation and therefore rids the smoker of the fear of stopping. The clinics offer a full money-back guarantee based on which the success rate after 3 months is over 90% and independent scientific studies confirm a success rate of over 50% after 12 months.

According to Ubisoft;
Brought to an exciting interactive platform, Nintendo DS, Allen Carr’s Easyway method will take on a whole new dimension. Players will be actively participating in the game’s content as they input the details of their smoking habits and even select their own Allen Carr’s Easyway coach to take them through the process of quitting.

Developed in conjunction with Allen Carr’s top experts, the game echoes the philosophy of Allen Carr’s Easyway method, enabling players to be entertained, challenged and to stop smoking at the same time.

“Ubisoft’s creative team has worked hard to deliver a game that successfully communicates Allen Carr’s Easyway method via play,” said Christian Salomon, vice president of worldwide licensing at Ubisoft. “The player experiences a truly interactive engagement with the game through which he or she learns that it can actually be enjoyable to quit smoking.” 

Robin Hayley, managing director of Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking, concurs. “There was an amazing synergy between Allen Carr’s Easyway team and Ubisoft as we worked on this project,” he said. “Our experts worked hand in hand with the Ubisoft team to create an entertaining and illuminating game that delivers Allen Carr’s Easyway method in a new, dynamic and highly effective way.” 


The only problem I can see is folks subsequently becoming addicted to the Nintendo DS.  Still that is not such a bad thing.


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Mike Bantick

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Having failed to grow up Bantick continues to pursue his childish passions for creative writing, interactive entertainment and showing-off through adulthood. In 1994 Bantick began doing radio at Melbourne’s 102.7 3RRRFM, in 1997 transferring to become a core member of the technology show Byte Into It. In 2003 he wrote briefly for the The Age newspaper’s Green Guide, providing video game reviews. In 2004 Bantick wrote the news section of PC GameZone magazine. Since 2006 Bantick has provided gaming and tech lifestyle stories for iTWire.com, including interviews and opinion in the RadioactivIT section.

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