Friday Sep 30, 2011
We’re excited to show you this Rise of Nightmares comic, which has been created by author Al Ewing and artist Marc Olivent. It accompanies the side story of Private Detective Roland Childs, whose tapes and experiences you can collect as you explore the world of Rise of Nightmares.
Thursday Sep 22, 2011
Tomorrow is Friday and with it, we have so much fun stuff to giveaway to our loyal SEGA fans! We’ve got a good mix of prizes based on the last month or more of activity, including some special items all the way from the Tokyo Game Show! Let’s get into it!
On the Block
1. Tokyo Game Show Pack! If you read our blog from the Tokyo Game Show, then you heard all about the special giveaways they had for playing games on the show floor. So for this giveaway we have a few special items – Sonic Generations Stickers (2), the absurd, yet awesome Black Panther 2 AXE body wipes (yes, you read that right), and Jack’s Golden Chainsaw in bookmark form from Anarchy Reigns!
2. PAX 2011 Pack! These items are straight from our Penny Arcade Paxtravaganza event and include a Sonic CD Lanyard, a SEGA tote bag, Aliens Infestation buttons, and a SEGA Controller sweatshirt (size S-2XL).
3. Shadow the Hedgehog Plush! Recently announced for Sonic Generations, Shadow will be making appearance as a Rival! To prepare for the upcoming release, we have the ultimate plush, the special Shadow plush.
4. Sonic Mini Figurines! Pulling from our massive merchandise closet of win, this collection of Sonic toys is too cute to pass up.
5. Shogun 2 & calligraphy set! Our last pack includes the incredible Shogun 2 from Creative Assembly, a game that on many occasions has had me up at 3am planning strategies to defeat my foes and skip sleep altogether, it’s just so good.
6. Rise of Nightmares! Kinect Required and NTSC only (sorry folks from Europe!). Play the ONLY hardcore game for the Kinect system with our 6th prize!
How it Works
1. You must be following us on Twitter to be eligible. (If you don’t have a Twitter account, you can create one by going to http://www.twitter.com and click the green “get started — join!” button in the center of the page.)
2. At random times on Friday, we will announce the prize we are giving away, a word or phrase, and what number of response you need to be to win. Send us a direct message (DM) via Twitter and be that number to win the prize. (@ replies do not count as entries!)
We tweet “GIVEAWAY: Sonic T-shirt, size L. Be the 15th person to DM “Sonic Adventure” to win!”
You see this, and want to win it, so you send us a direct message that says “Sonic Adventure”. If you are the 15th person to do so, you are the winner!
Quotation marks do not matter, capitalization does not matter, but spelling does matter!
3. All followers are eligible to win all prizes, unless a restriction is noted. Restrictions are usually due to the prize being region-locked. For example, US games that won’t work on UK gaming systems. There may also be age restrictions due to the rating of the game.
4. We will announce the winner on our Twitter feed once eligibility is confirmed.
How to Send Direct Messages on Twitter
Due to a change in our account status with Twitter, you should be able to send us direct messages without us following you.
There are a few ways to send us a Direct Message on Twitter. The easiest way is to go to our Twitter page and select “message” under the “Actions” heading in the side bar. If you do not see “message”, this means that we are not following you. Please send a message to @sega to let us know, and we will follow you. When you click “message” you will be taken to a window where you can type a message and press send.
You may also select the “direct messages” tab from your Twitter homepage, and select SEGA from the drop-down menu at the top of the page. Again, if you don’t see our name there, it’s probably because we’re not following you. Let us know, and we’ll follow you.
There are also many Twitter clients that you can use instead of using the website. These include TweetDeck, Twitteriffic, Tweetie, and Twhirl. Each of these programs works differently, so you’ll want to figure out how to send a direct message on the program you use. If you want to send us a test message, we’ll let you know if we received it or not.
Friday Sep 16, 2011
Rise of Nightmares is out now, and we’ve seen comments from so many of you that you are enjoying it. If you liked the music you heard while playing, you have Ron Fish to thank for it. Fish, who has worked on a number of blockbuster videogame titles during his career, created music that evokes unprecedented levels of tension and terror in our Kinect-exclusive horror title.
“Rise of Nightmares is designed to be a very intense, visceral and memorable experience,” said Darren Williams, Senior Director of Marketing at SEGA of America . “It takes a certain type of musical score to capture the ambiance necessary to bring this world to life. After hearing it for the first time we knew immediately that we had something special. Ron’s talent is widely recognized in the industry, and he has created a fantastic piece of art for Rise of Nightmares.”
Ron Fish has spent a number of years creating sound designs and scores for a wide variety of films and video games. He brought his award-winning musical composition skills to a number of incredibly popular and successful videogame titles, such as the God of War franchise, Batman: Arkham Asylum, and other blockbuster titles. His work on God of War earned him a number of accolades including an award from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. He finished his work scoring Rise of Nightmares earlier this summer, helping to create a revolutionary horror experience on Kinect for the Xbox 360.
“It soon became clear that this game would require a score that would meld the style of old horror films while invoking modern writing styles,” said Ron Fish. “The result is a blend of sound design and orchestra, creating a powerful musical statement that immerses the player in the intense and dark world of Rise of Nightmares.”
Rise of Nightmares creates a cinematic, story-driven world filled with buckets of blood and copious amounts of gore. Through a unique experience using Kinect for Xbox 360 players must survive a hellish night as they fight to survive against undead enemies, deadly traps, and one mind-warped madman. With over 40 weapons to choose from, including chainsaws, meat hammers, acid pumps, hedge shears, power saws and their bare hands, players must rip their foes limb from limb in order to save their kidnapped wife and make it out alive. Rise of Nightmares allows players to experience the game like all horror games should be played: in the dark, with only the glow of their television to light their path. While accurate motion controls and unique contextual gestures that allow players to use their whole bodies to fight off the undead horde with physical brutality, creates an intensely immersive experience that brings the genre to a whole new level.
Rise of Nightmares is available exclusively on Kinect for Xbox 360 and is in stores now.
Tuesday Sep 06, 2011
Rise of Nightmares has launched in North America, and will be available in Europe soon! Hear straight from Ito-san (Producer) and Ueda-san (Director) themselves on why they developed this game for the Kinect, why there are no firearms in the game, and if they are afraid of the dark after working on the game.
Many titles for the Kinect are family friendly offerings, why did you decide to create a Kinect game for the mature audience?
Ito: When I first saw Kinect, I immediately thought it would match up well with horror games, because it doesn’t require a controller when playing in front of the TV screen which gives players a sense of insecurity. So, I never thought it would be the first mature title for Kinect.
Ueda: Also, this title is not solely targeting for core gamers. We believe that casual gamers who watch horror movies on weekends could very well enjoy the game as well.
Rise of Nightmares is being created by the team behind House of the Dead, what similarities can we expect?
Ito: Actually, I’m the only one in the Rise of Nightmares team who used to be a member of the House of the Dead team, and I worked for the first original House of the Dead title. As for “similarities” with House of the Dead, there are lots they have in common; such as: having the player stand while gameplay, first-person view, and life-size zombies are coming closer, but the major similarity is that developing a Kinect title is much alike with developing an arcade game (AC), which is one of SEGA ‘s greatest talent. When developing a new title for AC, we usually think about what to carry (or to ride on), where to place the buttons, and how to play the game. At the first phase of House of the Dead development, we have tested various things like implementing a mechanic where the player can kick by pedaling. House of the Dead has ultimately turned out to be a simple game, but we have made use of those trial-and-error experiences for this title.
Are you afraid of the dark? If yes: has this changed a lot since you started working on Rise of Nightmares?
Ueda: No. Not much has changed since working on this project, except that I became interested in alchemy, tarots, and histories of supernatural science, as a result of all the researches we’ve done for the game.
Ito: I’m OK with the dark too, but I’m not a very big fan of haunted houses. I especially can’t stand the ones with actual people walking around acting as ghosts, because you never know what they’re up to. But I came up with the idea to reproduce this insecurity by allowing players to freely explore the Rise of Nightmares map. But even after developing Rise of Nightmares, I still have difficulties enjoying haunted houses.
Ito: The purpose of this game is “experience.” The protagonist of this game is an ordinary man, who becomes embroiled in an incident knowing nothing, forced to move forward in a situation where a mystery is followed by another. Our purpose is to have the players “experience” this bizarre and terrifying adventure.
Why did you decide not to include firearms?
Ito: Like I mentioned earlier, the story is about an ordinary people, and by our senses, firing around a gun is not very common. Guns don’t simply grow on trees, and we’re sure it requires lots of work to obtain one in an unfamiliar foreign country.
Ueda: And we can say that it’s more “challenging” and “terrifying” to directly fight with bare hands or using weapons rather than playing by firearms equipped. You might start off by thinking “Wish I had a gun…,” but there’s a chance you can end up obtaining something much better as you proceed through.
What’s your favorite horror movie? And why that particular one?
Ueda: I have way too many favorites to answer this question. Well, if I must choose, I’ll go with the classic ones like ‘Night of the Living Dead’ and ‘Dawn of the Dead.’ The film isn’t simply about the monsters being scary, but it also depicts the human drama and culture.
Ito: I’m not a horror movie fan very much, but I do love zombie films. The ordinary life suddenly comes to an end, and the zombies keep multiplying, having your family turning into zombies one by one, and at the end, you join them…I just get thrilled with this inescapable despair.
What’s part of RoN are you especially proud of? Why’s that?
Ito: There’s quite a lot, but I’d say “immersion.” This game requires no controllers while allowing players to explore the level freely, which should be a whole new experience that players find uncomfortable for the first few minutes. But I’m sure they will start walking around the world soon enough. Another aspect we’re proud of is that the game will gradually pull you into the world of ‘Rise of Nightmares’ by playing in the dark all alone.
How long does it take to develop a game like Rise of Nightmares?
Ueda: As of Rise of Nightmares, it took about a year and a half to two years. It’s always better to have longer development period, of course. But in practice, it varies depending on the team organization, skills, and engines, so it’s hard to give a specific number for this.
Ito: Much of the first phase of the development will be spent struggling with Kinect. It’d be excellent if I could lose weight while I keep playing this game.
How important is the audio / soundtrack for a game like Rise of Nightmares? Tell us something about creating/composing the score and the sound effects. Did you break real arms?
Ueda: We give substantial weight to it. Audio factors are great significance when it comes to horror. If you play the game on mute, there’s not much to be scared about. For this title, we had Ron Fish compose the game music. We had to communicate with the overseas co-workers, and I remember struggling to get across the image when the visual arts were incomplete, and retaking the scenes over and over, which was quite tough. But when the music perfectly fits with the game, the overall quality undoubtedly improves, and this is the part where our efforts are rewarded. I’m sure Ron had a tough time too, but he was always working positively, and we greatly appreciate him for that.
Ito: Plus, the game is set in Eastern Europe, so the essence of the Eastern European music is an exquisite accent. The characters of this title consist of various races such as German, Romanian, and Russian. The recording session was sure tough, but was also fun.
What’s the best thing about designing a game that’s dedicated for Kinect?
Ito: The idea of “How will we involve people to play Kinect?” is an subject shared globally, and we are now standing on the starting line. This is something very special for us, developers.
Is there something you wouldn’t want to do in terms of violence in your game, any line you don’t want to cross?
Ueda: “A line we don’t want to cross” can be something sensory, and it can also vary depending on the theme and/or story. We’re not very conscious about the matter. Though, attacking or killing citizens indiscriminately without any reason is unenjoyable for me.
Do you see Rise of Nightmares as the first of many adult experiences on Kinect?
Ito: Sure do. The characters are each burdened with their own problems, and they become complicated by intertwining with one another. This is definitely an adult issue children are incapable to work out, and such factors are contained everywhere in the story. We have designed the game so that players can discover a new aspect every time they play. Because this is a first mature SEGA title, we were especially particular on this issue.
Tweeting about Rise of Nightmares? Use the hashtag #riseofnightmares!
Thursday Aug 25, 2011
Attention, PAX attendees! Here’s your guide to all the great stuff going on this weekend with Rise of Nightmares
Hunt the Zombies!
Hunt the Zombies before they hunt you! The zombies will wander about for one full hour each day at PAX at 11am, 1pm, 3pm and 5pm. Take pictures of the Zombies, and tweet them using the hashtag #RiseatPAX. Then visit the Rise of Nightmares area of the Microsoft booth within the Kinect for Core area to claim your prize. One first place winner will get a Rise of Nightmares game, and 19 second place winners will get Rise of Nightmares t-shirts.
Pre-Order at PAX, get a Limited Edition Poster
Place your pre-order for Rise of Nightmares at PAX, then come to the reception desk at the SEGA booth. Show us your pre-order confirmation and get a limited edition poster of the Rise of Nightmares box art. They’re awesome, and once they are gone, they are gone…so come get yours!
Play Rise of Nightmares
Whether you play at Microsoft’s booth or at the SEGA booth, make sure you make some time for Rise of Nightmares this PAX. And don’t forget to get a photo in our Rise of Nightmares electric chair!
Thursday Aug 18, 2011
Last week, both the US and Europe had press preview events for Rise of Nightmares! Lods has the lowdown on the London event, and I’ll cover the San Francisco event.
An event for Rise of Nightmares took place in ’24 London’, a swanky club in Kingly Street, (centre of London), where we were able to show off Rise of Nightmares to press and community journalist, giving them the chance to literally get their hand on the game. We had the pleasure of Ito-san, from CS1 in Japan, in attendance who was available for interviews.
To set the mood we hired an electric chair, which was positioned immediately in the entrance, placed spiders with human skulls around the venue, used spider webs to help divide up the booths had eyeball cocktails and blood energy drink refreshments on offer. The game and the event seemed to go down really well, getting a positive reaction from everyone who attended.
Later that same week, we had our preview event in San Francisco. We were in the basement of Club 6, and it definitely set the mood right. It was dark in there (great for the game, not awesome for photos), but we had fun props in addition to the gaming stations. Like the London event, we also had Ito-san on hand for interviews.
To help us demo the game, we had blood-covered zombie nurses. If you’ve seen our recent trailers, you know that this is inspired by the game itself. As we were there early to help set up the event, I watched these girls be transformed into what you see above. It was a few hours of makeup, but I think you’ll agree that they look amazing.
Everyone got a chance to play a few levels of the game, including a boss fight. It was great to see people getting right into the game, and instinctively understanding how the controls worked. Everyone seemed to have a great time with the game.
When they weren’t playing the game, people were having fun with the props and zombie nurses. I think Jon Carnage from Destructoid was fearing for his life!
Luckily for him, Greg (from the SEGA media lab — he works on our trailers and videos) got the chainsaw and started exacting some pretty epic revenge.
Other SEGA employees came to hang out and support the event as well. This is Mary and me — Mary (on the left) is our Production Manager, and she helps us make the swag, logos, game manuals, and stuff that you see at SEGA events and in our games.
More Rise of Nightmares Info & Goodies!
We’ve got more photos from the San Francisco event on our Flickr. Rise of Nightmares is out on September 6th in North America, and September 9th in Europe. Don’t forget to pre-order at Gamestop or Amazon to receive a special item. If you are at PAX and pre-order at the show, you’ll get a bonus gift! Just come to the reception desk at the SEGA booth and show me your pre-order confirmation to claim your gift.
Tweeting about Rise of Nightmares? Use the hashtag #riseofnightmares !
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