Saturday, August 15, 2009

Michael Vick signs with Eagles: huge Madden '10 implications to follow

Examiner Bio
Michael Vick signs with Eagles: huge Madden '10 implications to follow
August 14, 12:56 PMNY PS3 ExaminerMario Mergola

You can say whatever you want about Vick’s actions or his ability on the football field, but one thing is undeniable: Michael Vick is the best virtual football player in the history of Madden football games.

Regardless of how you feel about the situation, Michael Vick has signed a one-year contract (with a team option for a second year) with the Philadelphia Eagles. At the time of Vick’s signing, Madden NFL ’10 was already shipped to stores, without Michael Vick.

Coinciding with the release of Madden NFL ’10, EA Sports’ Donny Moore preemptively stated on Twitter, “Michael Vick NOT in Madden NFL 10 Roster Update #1…once he signs with a team, we will work to get him in there ASAP.”

Time to get to work. ASAP.

Luckily, EA Sports agrees, and no more than 24 hours after the announcement of Vick's signing, Kotaku is reporting that as long as the NFL and the NFL Players' Association approves, Vick will be added to the game via the next roster update, currently slated for August 19. The evident addition of Vick to the virtual Eagles does pose a few problems.

No one really knows the playing ability of Vick after two years in prison. EA probably already has a basic set of attributes predetermined for Vick, but they might go the safe route and wait until he actually plays a few games before settling on the final numbers.

Also, the NFL’s commissioner, Roger Goodell has not yet announced if there will be a suspension for Vick. The most we know of Vick’s playing status is that a decision will be announced by week six of the NFL season. This basically means that Vick could still be suspended (or not) for any amount of time, but with the announcement of a suspension (coupled with a newfound home for the troubled star), the best estimate is that Goodell will reinstate Vick around week four of the NFL season (Philadelphia’s bye week).

The NFL may force EA to wait until Vick is fully reinstated to add him to the game for realism purposes. Hopefully, public pressure forces their hand earlier, since people that want to start a franchise right now get to play in a league including Michael Vick for seasons to come. If he gets reinstated after your franchise begins, Vick will never exist in your league.

Once Vick dons a green jersey on someone’s HDTV, the landscape of Madden football will be drastically changed. Think back to Madden 2004, when cover athlete Michael Vick was basically unstoppable. Everybody used Michael Vick in Madden ’04. Online, franchise, exhibition. Any game you played, one team was the Falcons.

The irony of this is, the best way to pester someone who continuously tortured you with the elusive Vick was to counter with a) a stellar, fast defense, or b) the second best running quarterback who actually had some throwing accuracy. Both these answers typically led to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Now Philly will be the team with which to play in Madden 2010. In every Madden game for the next year, this play could be a distinct possibility: Vick, the backup for Donovan McNabb, faking a handoff to Brian Westbrook, then throwing a deep pass to DeSean Jackson, who burnt his receiver for a long touchdown. It might actually be scarier on your Playstation 3 than on Sundays at Lincoln Financial Field.

Michael Vick being back in a Madden game is truly a unique situation. If EA lowers his overall ratings enough, every team could easily trade for Vick in their franchise. If he is rated too highly, he will be, once again, unstoppable. The balance is tricky, but most of us (myself included) just want Madden’s most exciting football player ever in the game now.

Get ready to run some QB contain plays. Or corner blitzes. Or Cover 2’s. Just get ready to be frustrated.

Michael Vick Madden 2010

Michael Vick coming to Madden 2010 August 19th

Was just on Twitter and Rob Semsey PR Guy for EA just posted that Michael Vick will making an appearance in Madden 2010 with a roster update Aug. 19. Recently Mich Vick was signed to the Philadelphia Eagles on a two year contract.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Report: WB Seeks Online Features For Mortal Kombat

August 11, 2009

Report: WB Seeks Online Features For Mortal Kombat
Now that it's acquired Midway and with it the Mortal Kombat franchise, Warner Bros. is looking to take the classic fighting brand online.

It's been revealed the company is seeking a senior software engineer in networking to 'push the boundaries' of online interaction, according to UK trade paper MCV, citing a job listing discovered by fansite TRMK.

"You will work closely with architects and designers on both the Mortal Kombat team and the advanced technology group to help design and implement functionality ranging from the core network transport layer all the way to owning the final implementation of brand-new features that will revolutionize online play," reads the listing.

Recent crossover Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe featured online play, and prior handheld incarnations of the series have had local multiplayer capabilities, among other ethernet-based initiatives in the last generation.

But the pursuit of a full next-gen Mortal Kombat with online play would help place the series in more direct competition with fellow legacy fighting brand Street Fighter as well as newer entrants like Soul Calibur, and Warner Bros. is apparently wasting no time getting the franchise at the core of its $33 million Midway purchase up to speed.

Mortal Kombat team sheds Midway skin for 'WB Games Chicago'

by Ben Gilbert { Jul 27th 2009 at 4:30PM }

Picked up by Warner Bros. in the auctioning off of Midway Games' assets, the development studio behind the Mortal Kombat franchise has seemingly been re-branded by its new corporate overlords. Superannuation spotted the info in the LinkedIn profile of Connie Gabelein, a human resources employee currently with Warner Bros. and formerly with Midway (and apparently never part of the management that was recently let go from the failed publisher). Ms. Gabelein lists her position as a "recruiter/HR generalist for the WB Game family of studios, which includes Monolith Productions, Surreal Software, Snowblind Studios and WB Games Chicago."

Furthermore, former Midway CTO/now "head of WB Games Chicago" Michael Weilbacher's LinkedIn profile seems to corroborate our suspicions. We've contacted Warner Bros. and Midway for comment and will update this post with more information as we get it.

Mortal Kombat Team Reportedly Considering Split from Midway

Unnamed sources say the development team is in "active talks" with other publishers.
By Kris Pigna, 04/04/2009
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe

For the long-suffering Midway, a critical blow to what remains their biggest-selling franchise must be the last thing they need right now, but it seems that may be happening all the same. According to Kotaku, unnamed sources say the development team behind the Mortal Kombat franchise is in "active talks" with other publishers to split from Midway and form their own studio.

According to the report, the Mortal Kombat team -- which is made of about 50 developers -- is angered over the lack of bonus payments guaranteed to them for Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe reaching previously-agreed-to sales targets. These unnamed sources also say there's general frustration over how Midway has handled their bankruptcy filing.

The MK team is not under contract at Midway, although there is one catch: if they do leave, they probably can't take the MK license with them, and would have to abandon work on the follow-up to MK vs. DC Universe -- a prospect that, evidently, one source said would be "tough."

A Midway PR rep commented to Kotaku, saying only that the MK team was in "good shape," and that the bonus payment scuffle wasn't Midway's doing. "Midway is not refusing to pay out those bonuses," the PR rep said. "It's the unsecured creditors committee that is refusing to allow us to pay them. They're the ones holding that up."

Midway filed for bankruptcy back in February, after facing a number of financial problems following Sumner Redstone's sale of his majority stake in the company back in December of 2008.

WANTED: Have you seen this beer-throwing Cubs fan

August 13, 2009

During the fifth inning of Wednesday night's Cubs-Phillies game, one Wrigley Field bleacher dweller took out his frustration with the Cubs' poor performance on Shane Victorino.

With the bases loaded, Jake Fox lofted a fly ball to the warning track.
» Click to enlarge image
The real beer-throwing culprit is on the left, the fall guy is to the right. (Deadspin)


Wrigley Field beer-throwing incident

Just as the ball was about to fall in Victorino' glove, the contents of one fan's beverage was projected onto the center fielder's head.

Victorino made the catch, and Sean Marshall tagged and scored on the play.

Sun-Times photographer Tom Cruze immortalized the moment—for better or worse—in the accompanying photo.

Wrigley Field security moved in quickly to escort the fan from his seat, but upon further review, they targeted the wrong fan.

The real culprit was quietly sitting a few seats away as the "fall guy" was hauled away.

The Cubs are working with the Chicago Police to find the real "beer chucker" and to prosecute accordingly.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Read THE Healthcare Bill For Yourself

Un-American' attacks can't derail health care debate

By Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer

Americans have been waiting for nearly a century for quality, affordable health care.

Health coverage for all was on the national agenda as early as 1912, thanks to Teddy Roosevelt's Bull Moose presidential run. Months after World War II came to an end in 1945, President Harry Truman called on Congress to guarantee all Americans the "right to adequate medical care and protection from the economic fears of sickness." From President Lyndon Johnson to President Bill Clinton, to President Obama's winning campaign on the promise of reform, there hasn't been a more debated domestic issue than the promise of affordable health care for all.

(Steny Hoyer)

(Nancy Pelosi/USA TODAY)

We believe it is healthy for such a historic effort to be subject to so much scrutiny and debate. The failure of past attempts is a reminder that health insurance reform is a defining moment in our nation's history — it is well worth the time it takes to get it right. We are confident that we will get this right.

Already, three House committees have passed this critical legislation and over August, the two of us will work closely with those three committees to produce one strong piece of legislation that the House will approve in September.

In the meantime, as members of Congress spend time at home during August, they are talking with their constituents about reform. The dialogue between elected representatives and constituents is at the heart of our democracy and plays an integral role in assuring that the legislation we write reflects the genuine needs and concerns of the people we represent.

However, it is now evident that an ugly campaign is underway not merely to misrepresent the health insurance reform legislation, but to disrupt public meetings and prevent members of Congress and constituents from conducting a civil dialogue. These tactics have included hanging in effigy one Democratic member of Congress in Maryland and protesters holding a sign displaying a tombstone with the name of another congressman in Texas, where protesters also shouted "Just say no!" drowning out those who wanted to hold a substantive discussion.

Let the facts be heard

These disruptions are occurring because opponents are afraid not just of differing views — but of the facts themselves. Drowning out opposing views is simply un-American. Drowning out the facts is how we failed at this task for decades.

Health care is complex. It touches every American life. It drives our economy. People must be allowed to learn the facts.

The first fact is that health insurance reform will mean more patient choice. It will allow every American who likes his or her current plan to keep it. And it will free doctors and patients to make the health decisions that make the most sense, not the most profits for insurance companies.

Reform will mean stability and peace of mind for the middle class. Never again will medical bills drive Americans into bankruptcy; never again will Americans be in danger of losing coverage if they lose their jobs or if they become sick; never again will insurance companies be allowed to deny patients coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

Lower costs, better care

Reform will mean affordable coverage for all Americans. Our plan's cost-lowering measures include a public health insurance option to bring competitive pressure to bear on rapidly consolidating private insurers, research on health outcomes to better inform the decisions of patients and doctors, and electronic medical records to help doctors save money by working together. For seniors, the plan closes the notorious Medicare Part D "doughnut hole" that denies drug coverage to those with between $2,700 and $6,100 per year in prescriptions.

Reform will also mean higher-quality care by promoting preventive care so health problems can be addressed before they become crises. This, too, will save money. We'll be a much healthier country if all patients can receive regular checkups and tests, such as mammograms and diabetes exams, without paying a dime out-of-pocket.

This month, despite the disruptions, members of Congress will listen to their constituents back home and explain reform legislation. We are confident that our principles of affordable, quality health care will stand up to any and all critics.

Now — with Americans strongly supporting health insurance reform, with Congress reaching consensus on a plan, and with a president who ran and won on this specific promise of change — America is closer than ever to this century-deferred goal.

This fall, at long last, we must reach it.

Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is speaker of the House and

Steny Hoyer, D-Md., is House majority leader.

Posted at 12:15 AM/ET, August 10, 2009 in Forum commentary, Health care/Insurance - Forum, Politics, Government - Forum | Permalink,so just because you disagree with the Healthcare disagree with the facts? Bullshit. I say Pelosi is full of shit,she is from San Fransicko after all right?