The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s “Axis: Bold As Love” comes to Rock Band

Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
Harmonix and MTV Games today announced The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s classic album, Axis: Bold As Love, along with the new Jimi Hendrix single, “Valleys of Neptune” from the new album will be added next week to the Rock Band Music Store of downloadable content for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and Wii™. Additionally, Jimi Hendrix’s music is now exclusive to Rock Band with more songs coming to its industry-leading platform in the future.

Hendrix’s music continues to resonate with music fans everywhere as proven by the long-awaited album of previously unavailable Jimi Hendrix studio recordings, Valleys of Neptune, which debuted last week on the Billboard 200 best-selling albums chart at #4. Moreover, four additional Hendrix catalog titles — Are You Experienced (#44), Electric Ladyland (#60), First Rays of the New Rising Sun (#63), and Axis: Bold As Love (#67) — have returned to the Billboard 200 four decades after their original release dates, a testimony to the enduring vitality and importance of the trailblazing artist-guitarist-performer.

According to the April 2010 Stereophile review of Valleys of Neptune, “Today, [Hendrix’s] music appeals as much to musically wise 17-year-olds as to still-spirited baby boomers.”

With more than 400 artists and 1,100 songs currently available through the Rock Band platform, and 65 million songs sold through its download store alone, Rock Band is the undisputed sales and content leader in the interactive music space, providing the deepest and best selection of artists, songs and albums.
Rock Band DLC Additions for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 System and Wii
The entirety of Axis: Bold As Love will be added next week to the Rock Band Music Store. Axis, The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s iconic second studio album, was released in 1967, and includes the “If 6 Was 9,” “Castles Made of Sand,” “Little Wing” and “Bold As Love.” The songs will be available both as singles and as an album pack. Omitted is the spoken word/sound sculpture opening track “EXP” as it is not suitable for gameplay.

Also available next week is “Valleys of Neptune,” the single from the new album of the same name, which was released March 9 on Legacy Recordings and features never before commercially released recordings. Legacy will also release this year deluxe CD/DVD editions of several of Hendrix’s most iconic albums, including Axis: Bold As Love
These 13 tracks join Hendrix’s “Fire,” which is already available on-disc for LEGO® Rock Band.

“Much like Jimi’s music, we feel that Rock Band represents an amazing, innovative medium for music discovery and interactionthat can have a profound affect on those who experience it,” said Janie Hendrix, CEO of Experience Hendrix LLC. “We are extremely pleased to be able to have Jimi Hendrix’s genius musical legacy continue to live on and touch people the world over through Rock Band.”

“Harmonix and MTV are honored to have the opportunity to bring Jimi Hendrix’s epic music to the Rock Band platform,” said Paul DeGooyer, SVP, Electronic Games and Music, MTV. “We’re delighted to be working with Experience Hendrix and Legacy to help ensure that a new generation of fans have the chance to discover these incredible songs and albums for themselves, in the most engaging and impactful way possible.”

Seattle-born rock icon Jimi Hendrix is recognized by many as one of the most creative and influential musicians of the 20th Century. Hendrix is a member of the U.S. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the UK Music Hall of Fame, has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, was named by Rolling Stone as the No. 1 guitarist of all time, and was the first inductee to the Native American Hall of Fame.

Available on Xbox 360 and Wii (March 30) and PlayStation 3 system (April 1):

· “Up From the Skies”

· “Spanish Castle Magic” +

· “Wait Until Tomorrow” +

· “Ain’t No Telling” +

· “Little Wing” +

· “If 6 Was 9” +

· “You Got Me Floatin’” +

· “Castles Made of Sand”

· “She’s So Fine” +

· “One Rainy Wish” +

· “Little Miss Lover”

· “Bold As Love” +

· “Valleys of Neptune”

(All tracks are original master recordings)

(Tracks marked with “+” are also available for download in the family-friendly LEGO® Rock Band Music Store.)

These tracks will be available for purchase as the “Axis: Bold As Love Album” pack, as well as individual tracks on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 system and as individual tracks only on Wii.

“Blue Dragon: Awakened Shadow” to be released in May

Blue Dragon
Blue Dragon
D3Publisher has just released a story description, new character art and the bios for the complete cast of characters for their upcoming epic action role-playing game Blue Dragon™: Awakened Shadow launching May 18th exclusively on the Nintendo DS.

Blue Dragon™: Awakened Shadow is an epic action role-playing game in a fictional open-world environment, the sequel to the critically acclaimed and successful Xbox 360 title. The player, aided by a young boy named Shu and his friends, will possess the power to control phantom shadows that mirror the actions of their masters, giving Shu and his comrade’s miraculous strength and magical powers.

In the original Blue Dragon, Shu and his friends saved the world from Nene, an Ancient (a long, lost people) by using their acquired Shadow powers. After the final battle, the world split into several cubes and King Jibral built his kingdom on the Jibral cube, where Shu and his friends chose to live.

Two years after the first adventure of Shu and his allies, a new threat is about to emerge, that steals the villagers’ Shadows. Awakened from a long slumber, the new enemies bear some resemblance to Nene, a conundrum which leads the player, Shu, and his friends into a terrifying fight to reclaim the lost Shadows and restore balance to the world.

à Main Character (YOU) ß

You (the player) awaken with no memory from a long slumber in the undergrounds of the Neo Jibral Cube, where Shu and his friends live. In order to regain your memory, you will begin an adventure with Shu and King Jibral, as the main character of this story.

Shu

Shu has not lost an ounce of energy or adventurous spirit since the battle with Nene. Jiro and Kluke remain his closest friends and are always willing to aid him. He has been living on the Neo Jibral Cube since the world shattering events of Blue Dragon caused the creation of separate cubes out of their single world, although he is ready to venture off to the other cubes once a mode of transportation can be found. He has maintained a friendly relationship with King Jibral, and is one of the few people that can seek an audience with the King without going through the normal bureaucracy.

Jiro

Jiro is still the intellectual, and has continued his studies since Blue Dragon. Kluke often goes to Jiro whenever she has an issue arise at her clinic. Due to his loyal personality, he always goes out of his way to help Kluke. Meanwhile, he still manages to play an advisory role for King Jibral, side by side with Zola.

Kluke

Kluke has been living on Neo Jibral Cube along with Jiro and Shu. She has opened her own clinic, taking after her parents, where ill patients can come and have their sicknesses healed by the power of her Shadow. She also still plays mediator between Jiro and Shu, who despite being the best of friends, compete for her affection.

Zola

Zola retains her position as the head of the Jibral Blademasters and lives on the Neo Jibral Cube within Neo Jibral Castle. She has kept her ties with King Jibral and acts as his closest advisor. While she has calmed her rebellious side since she first met Shu, she still has times when she will act out of turn or speak her mind without considering the consequences. Unmatched in swordsmanship and unfailing in loyalty, she will stand by Shu and his friends until the end.

Marumaro

Marumaro is a brave and reckless boy from the Devee Tribe. He is easygoing and shows no fear in battle. He puts his all in everything he does. He idolizes Zola since the battle with Nene.

King Jibral

King Jibral has continued to rule over the people of Neo Jibral with a compassionate hand since the events of Blue Dragon. Now counseled by Zola and Jiro, he has not only his own vision of how to run the cube, but the wisdom of two very knowledgeable advisors to guide him. While his rule may be even handed and stable, his personal life has not fared as well. King Jibral is troubled with internal strife and feelings that he may not be doing the best he can for his people. As well, he seems to be developing feelings for Zola that he has no idea how to communicate or even analyze.

Sahlia

Sahlia has just started life on Neo Jibral Cube. She has always had a major crush on Shu, and trys to win his heart, usually through the means of her fine baking skills. Her cookies are a huge boon to Shu’s spirits, even if he seems oblivious to her more romantic advances. It’s possible that she may have more luck with Shu’s heart if it weren’t for the existence of Kluke, whose crush matches Sahlia’s own in intensity.

Fushira

Fushira, Shu’s grandfather, has moved into Neo Jibral Town and set up a blacksmithing shop. The origin of Shu’s adventuring spirit, Fushira is still always ready to talk about his adventurous youth and the quests he went on in his prime. Not one to retire, Fushira keeps on working as a skilled smith while waiting for an adventure that will put Shu’s “defeating Nene and saving the world” to shame.

Yasato

Yasato, an extremely kind robot, has been living a quiet life on his own since meeting up with Shu and friends. Armed with a huge bank of knowledge of the Ancients, or at least the ability to know where to research it, Yasato is a great help whenever there’s something about the past that needs to be rediscovered.

Szabo

Szabo, once the General of the Demon Kings and Nene’s closest ally, has become a great friend to Shu and the group. He has learned that peace is what the world should truly strive for, and will go to lengths to make this a reality. Even though his motives are oriented towards creating peace for all beings, he is no less powerful a warrior and is perfectly willing and able to defeat anyone that stands in the way of his ideals.

Torippo

Torippo’s origins are shrouded in mystery. Torippo’s whereabouts since Blue Dragon are unknown, but rumors suggest that he’s been off searching for treasure and hunting down clues to discover his own past…

Monster Jam 2011 to be released this Fall

Monster Jam
Monster Jam
Activision Publishing, Inc. and Feld Motor Sports today announced Monster Jam® 2011 for the Wii™, Nintendo DS™, the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system. The Monster Jam 2011 video game promises to be the ultimate monster truck experience complete with unprecedented realism, customization, truck handling and all-out destruction. The game is scheduled for release in Fall 2010.

Monster Jam, the world’s largest and most popular monster truck touring property, remains the leader in family-friendly live motor sports entertainment, selling more than 4 million tickets at 325 performances worldwide in 2009. With the feverishly anticipated Monster Jam World Finals coming this weekend to Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, NV, the 2010 Monster Jam tour is on pace to be another recording-setting year for the brand.

“Monster Jam fans spoke to us loud and clear – they want to compete in stadium events that feel like the real thing and control monster trucks that handle like the real thing,” said David Oxford at Activision Publishing. “We can’t wait to let them either create their own trucks, or drive one of the 30 authentic trucks from Monster Jam then destroy everything in sight, just like their favorite drivers.”

Monster Jam 2011 is all about authenticity, personality, and fun, with 30 officially licensed Monster Jam trucks, including fan-favorites Grave Digger®, Maximum Destruction®, and Grinder™. Players can also create and customize their own trucks with thousands of options, unlocking new parts and upgrades as they progress through the game.

Eight real life stadiums from the Monster Jam circuit help bring the live atmosphere to the living room like never before, with explosive truck introductions, pyrotechnics and lighting, and a roaring crowd. In single player mode the goal is the same as for real life drivers – rise through the ranks of ruthless competitors to ultimately battle against the best at the Monster Jam World Finals! Head-to-head multiplayer modes take the heart-pounding competition to another level.

“Activision has been a fantastic partner of ours for many years now, and this year they have outdone themselves,” said Charlie Mancuso, President of Feld Motor Sports “Monster Jam 2011 will be the ultimate monster truck video game, our fans are going to flip when they get their hands on it!”

America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking for the Nintendo DS coming March 28th

America's Test Kitchen
America's Test Kitchen
The kitchen tends to be a social hub of the household. It’s a favorite place to gather, relax, laugh and socialize, whether you’re cooking or eating. Starting March 28, a new software release from Nintendo will make it simple for families and friends to create a fun, festive vibe in their kitchens any time they want. America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking for the Nintendo DS™ family of portable game systems not only offers a wealth of delicious, easy-to-follow recipes but also encourages cooks of any age or experience level to share in the social fun of preparing a meal together.

America’s Test Kitchen is widely recognized as a trusted brand for recipes that everyday cooks can easily master and enjoy. Cooking experts take care of the trial-and-error of cooking for you. With America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking, expert and novice chefs alike can select from 300 rigorously tested recipes – covering appetizers, desserts and everything in-between – and prepare them using interactive step-by-step instructions. Users can browse the recipes in several ways, including by ingredients, difficulty or cooking time. A wide range of age-appropriate kitchen tasks means everyone in the household can get in on the action.

“America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking proves that you can never have too many cooks in the kitchen,” said Cammie Dunaway, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. “The experts at America’s Test Kitchen have taken the guesswork out of cooking, allowing you and your fellow cooks to relax and enjoy the moment. The results are as fun as they are delicious.”

America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking offers practical information and advice throughout the cooking process. Prompts appear within each recipe to clarify terms that might be unfamiliar to some users, while audible instructions and how-to videos provide valuable guidance along the way. The handwriting-recognition feature in the America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking software allows users to record their personal notes on recipes.

Because chefs often have their hands full, America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking makes great use of the hardware features of the Nintendo DS family of portable systems. Thanks to each system’s built-in microphone, every person in the kitchen can use voice commands to navigate the software while they cook. And when multiple Nintendo DS users are preparing a meal together, they can wirelessly transmit select recipes between systems, even if only one user has a copy of the game card.

The new Nintendo DSi XL™ system also adds to the social experience of cooking and makes the America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking software really come to life. Nintendo DSi XL has screens that are 93 percent bigger than those on the Nintendo DS Lite system, and include the ability to be viewed from a side angle. That means everyone in the kitchen can get a good look at the recipe as they perform their various cooking tasks.

Both America’s Test Kitchen: Let’s Get Cooking and Nintendo DSi XL go on sale on March 28. The software is available at a suggested retail price of just $19.99.

Standalone DJ Hero turntable controllers spin, scratch and battle

Beat junkies, music fans and budding turntablists already rocking the wheels of steel with DJ Hero™ – the number one new videogame IP of 2009 – can now invite their friends to spin along with a standalone turntable controller which is available today at retail stores nationwide, Activision Publishing Inc. announced. Additionally, the first one-hundred thousand fans to purchase a standalone turntable controller will receive an exclusive Shepard Fairey poster, featuring the artist’s unique renderings of the game’s all-star cast of in-game DJs and talent.

“Adding a second DJ Hero turntable controller to the mix puts a new spin on the game’s social experience,” said Jamie Jackson, Creative Director at FreeStyleGames. “Now living room DJs can go play with their friends and family and enjoy our exclusive mixes in another all-new way.”

In addition to the DJ vs. DJ competitive game modes that give beat chemists the option to battle head-to-head, two DJs can mix and scratch together on multiple turntable controllers, a player can join in to emcee over any track in the game with a mic or, using a Guitar Hero® guitar controller along with a turntable controller, gamers can perform a series of infamous DJ-guitar exclusive mixes, just as many of the artists in DJ Hero have.

The #1 new videogame intellectual property by revenue in the U.S. and Europe for calendar 2009, according to The NPD Group, Charttrack and GfK, DJ Hero delivers an all-new interactive music experience that allows players to not only experience, but hear music in an all-new way. Featuring mixes created by DJ AM, Cut Chemist, Grandmaster Flash, DJ Jazzy Jeff, J. Period, DJ Shadow, DJ Z-Trip and more, spinning over 100 individual songs, highlighted in 93 unique never-before-released mixes that blend genres of music, including hip-hop, pop, rock and dance, DJ Hero delivers the most diverse and international collection of music ever assembled in a music game by incorporating anthems from legendary artists. Created exclusively for DJ Hero, the turntable controller immerses fans into DJ culture and a sea of music as they utilize and master various DJ techniques including scratching, crossfading and sampling, while leaving room for creative expression with a variety of effects and player chosen samples and scratches, transforming a face in the crowd into the life of the party.

Zhu Zhu Pets for Nintendo DS is out now

Zhu Zhu Pets
Zhu Zhu Pets
Zhu Zhu Pets™ for Nintendo DS, based off of the cuddly “Toy of the Year”-winning hamsters, is out now. The initial shipment of the game includes a Collectors’ Edition baby hamster named Baxter and is available while supplies last.

“Zhu Zhu Pets for Nintendo DS is arriving at a great time for the property,” said David Oxford at Activision Publishing. “After winning ‘Toy of the Year’, everyone is eager to see the next phase of their favorite toy.”

Gary Miller, President, GameMill Publishing, added, “This game delivers loveable hamsters, fun adventures and everything that Zhu Zhu Pets fans will love to play.”

“The Zhu Zhu Pets ‘Zhu-niverse’ is growing exponentially and fans are having a lot of fun with each evolutionary step,” said Natalie Hornsby, Vice President of Marketing, Cepia LLC. “We are extremely pleased to take this first step in our partnership with GameMill and Activision.”

Zhu Zhu Pets for Nintendo DS allows players to care for and play with their favorite hamsters, including Mr. Squiggles, Num Nums and Chunk. Players can lead their hamsters through more than 30 twisty, loopy levels on a skateboard, in a car or spinning in a hamster ball. After so much adventure, hamsters are sure to get tired and hungry and will need lots of care and love. Players can to make sure their hamsters get snacks, exercise, sleep and lots and lots of love!

Zhu Zhu Pets was the best-selling toy last holiday season and recently won three industry awards at the 10th annual Toy Industry Association Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards, including the 2010 “Toy of the Year,” “Girl Toy of the Year” and “Innovative Toy of the Year.”

Zhu Zhu Pets for Nintendo DS is rated E for Everyone by the ESRB and is now available for Nintendo DS at the retail price of $29.99. For more information visit www.activision.com or www.gamemillpublishing.com.

Kid Adventures: Sky Captain will be released on the Wii this summer

Kid Adventures: Sky Captain
Kid Adventures: Sky Captain
Pilot your very own plane and explore the skies, with D3Publisher’s Kid Adventures: Sky Captain that blasts off exclusively for Wii™ this summer. In the ultimate kid-flying fantasy, players will take control as a daring pilot in exhilarating missions to become Gloster Island’s Sky Captain! Kid Adventures: Sky Captain provides players the chance to improve their flight skills, scores and rank, and at $19.95 is a great value for the whole family to enjoy.

Kid Adventures: Sky Captain is an action flight game designed for both children and families that enables players to soar across the skies in 40 exciting missions that include sky racing, stunt flying, target shooting, treasure hunting and unlocking flying machines such as a jet plane and UFO. Players can also invite a friend to the cockpit and play cooperatively in any of the missions or go head-to-head in multiplayer mode. Players are shown colorful environments to explore, including multiple islands, pirate ships, marine life, dinosaurs and more, as they perform cool stunts and dart above the landscape, without leaving the comfort of home.

Kid Adventures: Sky Captain is under development by Torus Games and is currently rated “E” for everyone by the ESRB.

Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4 to be released for Xbox 360, PS3 and more

Lego Harry Potter
Lego Harry Potter
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment (WBIE) and TT Games have released a new gameplay video for the highly-anticipated LEGO®Harry Potter™: Years 1-4 for the Xbox 360, Wii, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, PSP and PC. The video gives fans a sneak peek at the fun-filled humor that awaits players later this year!

LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 will give gamers the chance to experience the magic and adventure of Harry Potter in a uniquely LEGO way. Playing as Harry Potter, Ron Weasley™ and Hermione Granger™, as well as more than 100 other favorite characters, gamers will have the opportunity to attend lessons, cast spells, mix potions, fly on broomsticks and complete tasks to earn rewards. Throughout the game, players will also have the freedom to explore iconic settings from the wizarding world including Hogwarts™ castle, Diagon Alley™, the Forbidden Forest and the village of Hogsmeade™.

The Lord of the Rings: War in the North coming in 2011

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announces today that The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, an epic multiplayer action/RPG video game based on the renowned novels by J.R.R. Tolkien, is set to launch on the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Games for Windows® in 2011.

Developed in association with Middle-earth Enterprises, The Lord of the Rings: War in the North explores both original and familiar narrative elements as Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment holds the rights to develop video games based on both the literary and motion picture content from The Lord of the Rings. Breaking new ground as a mature RPG video game set in Middle-earth, The Lord of the Rings: War in the North advances the RPG paradigm through innovative online, interdependent co-op play for up to three players who form their own Fellowship to fight Sauron’s forces in the North.

“With The Lord of the Rings: War in the North we are taking a mature approach to the widely celebrated property with authentic portrayals of battles and all new storylines,” said Martin Tremblay, President, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “Utilizing the award-winning and passionate development team at Snowblind Studios, we are looking to evolve the RPG experience and deliver The Lord of the Rings game fans have been waiting for.”

“In The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, Snowblind will deliver an action RPG for core gamers featuring authentic narrative and environmental locations from J.R.R. Tolkien’s original The Lord of the Rings,” said Ryan Geithman, Founder and Studio Head of Snowblind Studios. “This game is a natural evolution of the acclaimed RPG gameplay that Snowblind has consistently delivered over the past years. Players and fans will experience an innovative approach to online co-op gameplay, woven throughout every facet of the game in a way that only Snowblind can deliver.”

In The Lord of the Rings: War in the North, players can become the heroes in the great battle of the North as part of the epic War of the Ring. Exploring unseen lands, story elements and characters from Middle-earth as well as elements familiar from past feature films, gamers will experience extensive character customization and development, expansive co-op gameplay options and upgradeable weapons, skills and special abilities.

GTI Club Supermini Festa! is now available

GTI Club Supermini Festa
Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. today announced GTI Club Supermini Festa! is now available in retail stores nationwide on Nintendo Wii™. Based off the award-winning arcade franchise, GTI Club Supermini Festa! allows players to traverse through the streets and backalleys of some of the world’s most recognizable skylines including tracks in the United Kingdom, Italy, France, Japan and USA. Competitive racers will speed to the finish through some of the most challenging road terrains, secret shortcuts, tight turns and obstacles determining who has the most skills behind the wheel.

Part of GTI Club Supermini Festa!’s unique racing experience lies in the marriage of content, competition and customization. Some of the world’s most recognizable vehicles are ready to be raced including the ABARTH 500, MINI Cooper S, PEUGEOT 207 GTi, RENAULT Sport CLIO V6 and many more! Cars are also customizable so players can enter the garage and personalize their cars from ground up. Action-packed multiplayer games puts up to four players in hi-speed racing competitions via Nintendo Wi-Fi connection on Wii and via ad-hoc party for PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system. Players can also change the course of the competition with a variety of multiplayer party games including “Tomato Festival” and “Bomb Tag.” GTI Club Supermini Festa! will continue to keep fans clamoring for content, as free custom patterns for each car will be available for download via the Wii Wi-Fi Connection beginning at launch.

GTI Club Supermini Festa! is rated E for Everyone by the ESRB and now available on Nintendo Wii for the SRP of $29.99. In addition, GTI Club Supermini Festa! is available for PSP system and PSP®go (via download) for $29.99.