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God of War e-mail treats fans to concept art


Sony has just sent an e-mail to members of the PlayStation Underground, with an exclusive piece of concept art and a new screenshot. Ru Weerasuriya, director of Chains of Olympus, mused over developing the title:

"It's no easy task bringing God of War to the PSP. Fans have come to expect these huge landscapes, complex gameplay, and visceral combat that God of War I and II gave them. To bring that same experience on the PSP, we are pushing the hardware further than ever before. We're really pleased with what we have so far but we're not done yet. We still have a few tricks up our sleeves. I'm also really proud of the story of Chains of Olympus and I can assure you that there'll be some mind-bending puzzles in there for you guys."

While it's true that this doesn't provide us with any new details on the game, we're pleased that Sony is still reaching out to its most dedicated fans. We're confident that Ready at Dawn will produce a title of the same magnitude as its console brethren, and hope to get some play time at E3.

Gallery: God of War: Chains of Olympus

God of War: Chains of Olympus fully revealed

God of War: Chains of Olympus. You know you want it, and 1UP has the exclusive.preview. There's six pages of beautiful info on quite possibly the most anticipated PSP game of all time.

"A lot of what we're telling with the later stories is Kratos when he's just really realized he's a puppet of the Gods, really realizing that he's getting screwed over, and [the PSP game will] flesh out when he did have maybe a little bit of faith and when that faith started to crumble a little bit -- when he started to see some cracks in the stories they were telling him," says Chains of Olympus creative director Cory Barlog.

We don't want to spoil the rest, so you're going to have to check out 1UP for the rest. Hopefully, we'll see even more of God of War: Chains of Olympus soon enough.

Cory Barlog's role in the handheld God of War


God of War creator David Jaffe has been removing himself more and more from the franchise he created, opting to focus on new titles, like the perpetually delayed Calling All Cars (PS3). In his stead is Cory Barlog, who became director of the PS2 sequel, God of War II. As any player of the game can tell you, the sequel is vastly improved over the original, addressing all the criticisms that the first title faced. The incredible action of God of War II proved that Barlog was a fantastic replacement for Jaffe.

However, what's Barlog's involvement with the upcoming PSP iteration, Chains of Olympus? Development is in the capable hands of Ready At Dawn (Daxter), and initial screens and video show almost limitless potential for the title. Although we're excited to see the title develop so well, we're disappointed by Barlog's fairly removed involvement from the title. Speaking to GameDaily, Barlog reveals "I'll be working on it kind of in the way Dave oversaw God of War II, being a sounding board for [developer] Ready at Dawn. My main focus is to try and make sure it's within the God of War universe."

Sony makes price drop official; adds Daxter and Syphon Filter to Greatest Hits


The $30 price drop isn't exclusive to GameStop/EB Games--it's universal. But, that's not where the savings end. Sony has also added two more games to PSP's Greatest Hits lineup: Daxter and Syphon Filter.

According to the press release, "We have always been passionate about making great entertainment accessible to everyone, and the new price for PSP, as well as the continued growth of the 'Greatest Hits' library, reflect our ongoing commitment to supporting and expanding the PSP community," said Jack Tretton, president and CEO, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "We are pleased that we are able to engineer savings for the consumer at this stage of PSP's lifecycle, allowing more individuals to experience PSP for the first time. In particular, we have recently seen a steady rise in the number of teens adopting PSP as their primary handheld entertainment system, and we expect the new price will accelerate that trend."

Sony also reminds players that the future of PSP is quite bright, especially with the upcoming God of War: "Ready At Dawn couldn't be more pleased with our success bringing Daxter to the PSP platform last year, and now we have another opportunity to blow away expectations of what a developer can accomplish on a portable when Kratos hits the 'small screen' in God of War," said Didier Malenfant, co-founder and president, Ready At Dawn Studios. "PSP is an ideal platform for us to work on because we have a high level of freedom to be creative, and we can deliver gameplay experiences that rival ones you'd get from a computer entertainment system."

[Update: According to Engadget, the PSP Entertainment Pack will also receive a $30 cut, from $250 to $220.]

PSP Fan Art Fridays: Daxter


Do you want to share your PSP-related fan art? Send us an . A new piece of fan art will be shared every Friday.

Ready At Dawn has been in the news a lot lately, but most PSP gamers still love them for their work on Daxter. This week's art depicts the various qualities of our hero. Wennichelle created this work and I'm not sure I've ever seen Daxter depicted any cuter. If Daxter looks good (and he does) there's probably a reason. Wennichelle has done many Daxter fan arts prior and I actually had a difficult time picking which one I wanted to use. If you like Daxter and/or the art above, go check out Wennichelle's Deviant Art account for more. Thanks for making such great fan art Wennichelle!

Gallery: Fan Art Fridays

Ready at Dawn explains PSP's power; prepares PS2 Daxter?


Ready at Dawn has been getting a lot of attention lately. Their first game, Daxter, is considered one of PSP's best: not only does it feature solid gameplay, but it features truly impressive graphics technology, and completely invisible load times. Obviously, the team has learned new tricks, and has managed to squeeze more power out of our handheld for their upcoming God of War game. According to co-founder Didier Malenfant, Daxter doesn't come close to taking advantage of the system's true capabilities: "[We] made the conscious decision not to push the hardware as far as we could ... mainly because we wanted to ship the game in a timely manner."

Obviously, the talented team is unlocking even more of PSP's power in God of War. However, "the biggest frustration right now, in a way, is the limitation on the clock speed. We'd love to run our games at 333Mhz (we do internally just for kicks) because it does make a big difference in how much stuff you can push on the platform."

So, how does Ready at Dawn feel about being responsible for two of Sony's biggest franchises? "The truth is," Malenfant explained, "we built Ready At Dawn Studios to create original IP, but ... I don't think anyone here regrets working on two of the world's biggest franchises in the meantime."

The future is bright for this Santa Ana-based team. The single most wanted request the team receives, though, is a PS2 version of Daxter. "I think everyone here would love to do it, and it actually wouldn't be that hard because Daxter was never designed as a handheld game, we could even add a few things for the PS2 version."

[Via Gamasutra; Thanks, Joe!]

God of War release date revealed?

An anonymous PSP Fanboy reader wrote us to make us hip to the fact that GameStop has given a release date of 11/01/07 to the PSP version of God of War. This listing could be like many GameStop listings and just be a placeholder date, but at the same time it makes a lot of sense for God of War to come out in the fall and we do know it's coming this year. Don't take November 1st off just yet, but also don't plan any big events for that day. It may be Godmergence Day ... or something.

Developers talk PSP's future

IGN took some time on PSP's 2nd anniversary to ask several developers what they thought the future held for PSP. Here are some of the more interesting excerpts:

Ready at Dawn (devs of Daxter and the upcoming PSP God of War)

"I think it's bringing a whole new crowd to handheld gaming, people that would have never played the type of games on previous handhelds."

SCEA's SOCOM Team

"The PSP is a great platform, but very few publishers and developers are creating games that really take advantage of the platform. I really hope that this will change. We have many more great PSP games coming out and I hope you look forward to them. "

Continued after the jump ...

Continue reading Developers talk PSP's future

What do you want to see in God of War PSP?

I loved the original God of War and from what I've played of God of War II, it seems even better than the first, but what can Ready at Dawn (creators of the excellent Daxter) do with God of War on the PSP? Well first of all, I'm just happy that I am getting more God of War this year, so it fulfills my wishes on that level, but I suppose I should have more expectations than that. Here's what I'd like to see in God of War PSP:

  • New weapons (and if possible some that are as fun as the chain blades)
  • More powers (how 'bout one that turns enemies into curly fries)
  • More level spanning boss battles (like the colossus battle)
  • Keep the epic levels and feel
  • Orchestrated music (with opera singers if possible, they always sound dramatic)
  • More puzzles around killing enemies or using their corpses
  • Co-op (it's all the rage now)
  • Visuals on par with the PS2 titles
  • Intuitive controls

But enough about what I want from God of War PSP, what do you want to see Kratos do in his first portable adventure?

God of War nearly confirmed


Does that font look familiar? It sure does, doesn't it? It's the God of War font, and it can be found plastered on Ready at Dawn's webpage. We've heard the rumors, and even received a few "insider" hints about God of War for PSP. This looks to be the last step before an official confirmation, no?

[Thanks, Mike!]

Rumor: Ready at Dawn working on God of War


It's one of our most wanted Dream Games on the system: God of War. But is it actually happening? According to a Spanish website, MeriStation, Ready At Dawn may be working on a portable continuation of the revered franchise. Ready At Dawn is famous for their work on Daxter, which is still one of the system's most technically impressive games.

While this would be exciting, take it with a grain of salt. However, to add fuel to the debate, I'll reveal that a few weeks ago, I too received a tip about God of War on PSP. Is it really coming?

[Via GAF]

Ready at Dawn ready to develop another PSP game

Didier Malenfant, President of Ready at Dawn Studios, was recently interviewed by QJ.net. The team is famous for development on the technological marvel Daxter, and he had a lot of great things to say: "I think people were quite shocked to see what we pulled off on the PSP so far and our next game is already lightyears away from what Daxter achieved in terms of performance."

Other interesting tidbits:
  • If the PSP were running at full speed (333 MHz), Daxter would be able to hit 60 frames per second.
  • The team is now providing their engine, "Ready at Dawn Engine," as a middleware solution. A lot of studios seem interested in harnassing the power of the no-load-time engine. This is a very good thing.
  • The next game that the team is working on is a continuation of an already established franchise, akin to Daxter. Time to start guessing.
Feel free to continue reading the interview over at QJ.

Ready at Dawn readies a challenge for PSP devs

This may be their first time out in the gaming rat race, but fresh-faced developers Ready at Dawn are already throwing the proverbial gauntlet down to the their fellow developers. In a statement made to Gamesindustry.biz, Ready at Dawn president Didier Malenfant was quoted saying, "...it bugs the hell out of me when you hear a lot of developers saying, 'We can't do this that way because...it doesn't have a second analog stick.'" He followed up this remark by calling any such claim made as nothing but an excuse, adding that the PSOne had a range of great titles to its name even before analog sticks were implemented.

Malenfant's statements, while in some small, nagging, paranoid way seems like a sneaky way to drum up press for their maiden PSP title Daxter, does make a valid, if adundantly obvious, point.  Despite the PSP's current hardware limitations, game developers have an obligation to their own craft to find ways to take advantage of the strengths that the portable offers, instead of always exclaiming their shoulda woulda couldas after their game hits a snag with gamers.

"I don't want to play sub-par games just because I'm on a handheld," breathed Malenfant. Amen to that.

Click through to see gameplay footage of Daxter.

Continue reading Ready at Dawn readies a challenge for PSP devs



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