Cut the Rope Available to Play Online with HTML5 

ZeptoLab, the creators of the popular Cut the Rope game, have created a new HTML5 version that runs in any modern browser working with Pixel Lab and Microsoft Internet Explorer, who are promoting the use of HTML5 in Windows 8.

Details about game development have been posted online and developers said that 15,000 lines of code was ported from Objective-C used in iPhone development into JavaScript. Developers also had to convert graphics from OpenGL to HTML5 canvas, CSS3 styling and fonts. Although the game cannot be used with touch based devices, developers said “this is something we’re considering for future versions”.

Cut the Rope will be available in Windows 8 with the Microsoft team saying “investment in immersive experiences online now can pay off in real profits later with the Windows Store”. Previously in a Windows store preview, Cut the Rope was seen as a trial version. Antoine Leblond, Vice President of Windows Web Service, said in a blog post that by “using [an] in-app purchase [in the Windows 8 store], Cut the Rope players can upgrade to new levels right in context, as they play the game”.

GOG Giving Away Empire Earth: Gold Edition

GOG, Good Old Game, are giving away a DRM-free download of Empire Earth: Gold Edition until December 14 at 10.59 GMT as part of a holiday promotion.

Empire Earth was released in 2001 and plays like a combination of Ages of Empires and Civilization, in that players move through ages of technology with 500,000 years of world history. The real-time strategy received an average of 82% from critics according to Game Rankings.

GOG allows users to re-download games as required and install “as many times as you need”. Other than the 538MB download of the game, users can also download the bonus material which includes manuals, wallpapers, avatars and technology trees.

GOG also has started a sale on games with many classic games 50% off until January 2nd and or December 26 for Activision games

Relive Transport Tycoon Deluxe with OpenTTD

Even after nearly 17 years since the release of Transport Tycoon Deluxe, a strong cult following continues. OpenTTD is an open-source equivalent of Transport Tycoon Deluxe, a game by Chris Sawyer (maker of RollerCoaster Tycoon). The classic simulation game puts you in charge of a transport company, allowing you to build transport networks for passengers and goods.

OpenTTD builds on Transport Tycoon Deluxe with improvements to the user interface, larger maps, automatic path building tools, new buildings and the addition of multiplayer mode. The large list of major changes can be viewed in the OpenTTD about page.

The game can use original files from Transport Tycoon Deluxe, however if you don’t own the original CD, the game can be installed with open alternatives. OpenTTD works on Mac, Linux, BSD, Solaris and Windows and can be downloaded from the official website.

Minecraft Goes Mobile with New Pocket Editon

Mojang’s Minecraft, a popular indie sandbox game, has been released as an exclusive to Sony Xperia Play before making it onto other Android devices. The Minecraft Pocket Edition is in the alpha stage of development which has a “focus on the creative aspects of Minecraft.”

The game is based on “building anything you want” using blocks which represent different elements such as water and dirt in computer-randomized worlds. Currently the mobile game lacks the “survival mode” where gamers fight off mobs to survive, though the game does have a wireless mode to play with friends.

Mojang said that they were “we’re planning to continue developing the Pocket Edition for a long time with frequent updates” and that they were looking forward to getting feedback on the game.

Minecraft Pocket edition is available as a full version (around $7) or demo (free) at the Android market. Mojang are also selling a custom Sony Xperia with a Minecraft theme on eBay with proceeds going to charity. Mojang explaining “we’ve given away some fantastic Minecraft goodies in the past, only to see it cheekily pop up on eBay auctions.This time, we thought we’d beat you guys to it”.

Nintendo Cuts Profit Forecast and President’s Salary Halved

After an embarrassing performance of the Nintendo 3DS which has already received severe price cuts, Nintendo has announced a 50.2% decrease in net sales and a 84.3% decrease in net profit in comparison to the last financial year.

Nintendo’s president and board of directors are cutting their salaries voluntarily. Satoru Iwata, the company’s president, would be taking a 50% cut to his estimated $770,000 salary whilst the board of directors will have a 20% to 30% cut.

Nintendo’s profit forecast has fallen by 82%, they forecast their net income for year ending March 31, 2012 to be 20 billion yen falling dramatically from the 110 billion yen prediction. The profit would reach a 27 year low for the company. Forecasted sales have not dropped.

Nintendo told investors that a “lack of hit software titles” caused a slump in software and hardware sales as well as price markdowns for the Nintendo 3DS, Wii and Nintendo DS in certain markets. Advertising also increased for the Nintendo 3DS and research and development expenses were incurred for the Nintendo Wii U which will be released in 2012.

Customers who purchased a Nintendo 3DS at the higher price of around $249 instead of the discounted $169 would be able to download 20 free games courtesy of Nintendo.

LulzSec Hacks Senate.gov and Bethesda Softworks

LulzSec has gained access to internal data from the United States Senate website, as well as source code and database passwords from Bethesda Softworks.

Bethesda Softworks has produced popular gaming series including Brink, The Elder Scrolls and Fallout. LulzSec said in a press release that they have not stolen the details of more than 200,000 customers. They added ‘we actually like this company and would like for them to speed up the production of Skyrim, so we’ll give them one less thing to worry about.’ According to LulzSec, they hacked into the website two months ago. ‘Please fix your junk,’ advised the company via Twitter.

Sophos, an internet security company, said in a blog post on the LulzSec Senate leak that ‘some basic information on the filesystems, user logins and the Apache web server config files,’ has been stolen. Sophos also mentioned that such hacks were punishable under law, with jail terms of five to twenty years.

In a press release on the Senate by LulzSec, they said ‘this is a small, just-for-kicks release of some internal data from Senate.gov – is this an act of war, gentlemen? Problem?’ A possible reference to Pentagon stating that hacking was an act of war, reported by the Wall Street Journal.