Game4u Adds Mac Games to downloads4u

Few months ago, Game4u had introduced downloads4u, their digital download service for PC games. Today, Game4u has added several Mac titles available for digital download on downloads4u.

In collaboration with leading Mac games publisher, Aspyr Media, Game4u has introduced several Mac titles including triple A titles such as Borderlands 2, Roller Coaster Tycoon 3 and Call of Duty series with pricing on-par with the local retail prices.

Mac catalogueIf you’re wondering how downloads4u behaves like, check my post on impressions of the service. The Mac games available at downloads4u‘s Mac section – check it out and let me know if your experience is better than mine!

Flipkart Launches Digital Music Store ‘Flyte’

Indian ecommerce giant Flipkart has formally unveiled its new digital music store Flyte, which was outed last week by a hawkeyed user. Music piracy is rampant in India with an overwhelming majority of downloaded music being illegal. However, much of the blame can also put on the unavailability of affordable and reliable digital music stores. Apple disrupted digital music and entertainment arena around the world with the iTunes store. Unfortunately, Apple’s disdain for the Indian market means that the world’s second most populous country is still an untapped demographic with plenty of raw potential.

Flipkart has already established itself as a clear leader in ecommerce. With the impending arrival of Amazon, it has been getting more and more aggressive. Recently it acquired one of its biggest competitors – LetsBuy. Even before that, it had acquired Mime360 and Chapak’s digital catalogue. Mime360 specialized in hosting streaming music, while Chapak had a catalogue with 40,000 filmographies, 10,000 movies and close to 50,000 ratings.

Digital music business is always a tough nut to crack. Flipkart is entering uncharted waters as most Indians simply aren’t habituated with purchasing music online, or purchasing music at all. The greediness of record labels often complicates things further. However, Flipkart’s dominance and reach offers it a killer advantage that might prove vital in this challenging segment.

Flyte

To its credit, Flipkart is kicking things off on the right note. All the music in Flipkart’s catalogue is DRM-free (high quality MP3 files) and will work on any device and any operating system. Consumers can download each track a total of four times, and a download manager is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux to facilitate simultaneous downloads. Browsing through the music catalogue is simple and intuitive, and purchasing is easy as credit cards, debit cards, and internet banking is allowed. However, none of this would have mattered if Flipkart hadn’t gotten the pricing right. Thankfully, I think they have succeeded in making music affordable enough for the extremely price-sensitive Indian market. Like iTunes, Flipkart allows purchase of individual tracks, so you only pay for what you want to listen to. New and popular tracks are priced at Rs. 15, while Rs. 6 seems to be the baseline. Flipkart has managed to get a large chunk of Indian music publishers onboard, including biggies like T-Series, Saregama, Tips, Universal India and Sony Music. International record labels that have signed up include Universal, and Sony Music International. EMI is sadly missing. Currently Flipkart’s catalogue features music in English and Hindi, as well as regional languages like Tamil, Telegu, Punjabi, and Bengali.

Rumor: Flipkart Opening Digital Music Store ‘Flyte’ Soon

The quick eyes of Setu at Woikr.com (no doubt helped by being there just in time) has revealed a new face of Flipkart. It seems that the Indian e-retail store is opening a digital distribution service for music, called “Flyte”. While the exact facts of the music store are yet to be revealed, the household online retail name wants to take up as much of the untapped market share of ecommerce as is possible in India. Considering that the brand is trusted, it would be nice to see digital music sales pick up in India which has long been known to be a pirate island.

Flyte

Flipkart had acquired Mime360, a Mumbai based company that specialized in hosting streaming music for Indian labels such as Saregama, Universal Music and others. This, coupled with the fact that Flipkart had acquired rights to Chakpak.com’s huge digital catalog, obviously points out to the launch of this music (and hopefully movies) digital distribution platform.

The biggest clincher of the entire episode would be the pricing scheme decided upon by Flipkart. To satisfy the Indian wallet, they must price it evenly at about Rs. 15 to Rs. 20 per song, offering discounts and the like to newly released albums and movies. From what had transpired on the Twitter account, it seems that the songs will definitely be 320kbps DRM free (!), and that an eBook store with ePub files will be implemented in the “near future”. (You must know that by now I have a “:D” face)

 

Of course, the success of this entire venture depends on the end user. I am sure Flipkart has thought this decision through, but everything depends upon the non-pirating customer who believes that music actually carries a price and that the royalty money helps the musicians make more music. I really hope this works out for Flipkart and that a video game digital distribution with Indian prices starts up there!

[Image from Woikr.com]

SEGA Dreamcast Collection is Available for the PC and Xbox 360

Remember the beautiful beautiful little console known as the Dreamcast (DC)? Remember how good it was to you, and how the VMU controller with its little LCD was the bestest little thing in the world (actually, no). Remember how your little heart broke when it died and there were no more Dreamcasts available?

SEGASonic

Well, if playing with that controller is what you want, then well we cannot help you. However, if it is the games that you are more interested in, then SEGA of America has a great offering for you. The SEGA Dreamcast Collection is a collection of four classic Dreamcast games for the PC and Xbox 360. All five of these games were great hits (or at least, good hits) back in the DC’s heyday (which was relatively short).

Sonic Adventure: Stop Dr. Eggman by collecting the seven Chaos Emeralds in the first Sonic game for the Dreamcast.

Crazy Taxi: Does this warrant an introduction? Deliver passengers to their destination…in style! Collect money for crazy stunts and time of transit.

Space Channel 5 Part 2: The fun rhythm game for the Dreamcast sees Ulala the reporter dancing her way to victory!

SEGA Bass Fishing: Finally, relax with the hook, line and sinker with this bass fishing game. The lovely outdoors sans the out of doors-ness.

All of these games are HD supported, have Avatar awards and other such niceties of games these days. Go get them here!

Moonbase Alpha Goes Online on Steam

NASA has teamed up with the US Army game development studio (the makers of America’s Army) to deliver an almost-realistic lunar base simulation. Moonbase Alpha is a pretty neat looking game that has you (and up to five more players) restoring NASA’s lunar base – Moonbase Alphaafter it was damaged in a critical meteorite impact. Using cutting-edge lunar technology and varied tools and robots, you and your friends must save the colony before the oxygen runs out in the base.

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The lesser the time you take, the better your score is and in the near future I would expect a lot of competition to pipe up on this game. The game is well integrated with Steam with stats and leaderboards supported. Also, Valve’s Anti-Cheat (VAC) system is also integrated into this game.

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The best part about this game is that it’s free. Yes, it’s rated E for Everyone and is great for family gaming and is also entirely free!

Download it from Steam today!

Dawn of War II: Gold Edition for $19.99 on Steam!

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Oh yeah, this is big. Two awesome RTSs on Steam are up in a bundle pack for only $19.99! Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II (DoWII) and Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising are both available for a complete bundle pack. This is really supercool because DoWII by itself is about $50 on its own.

If you haven’t heard about the Dawn of War series, it can be summed up in one word: brutal. Each and every one of the playable races is, in its own way, extremely brutal and violent with generous chainsaw, shotgun, battleaxe and other weapon-filled gore that satisfies the bullied young kid within us. A sampler quote, as always by one Comissar:-

Who told you to die? Keep fighting!

So, go ahead and buy this great bundle pack and start hacking some <insert enemy race here> flesh!

Trine Available for 75% Off on Steam

Trine is a platformer that screams of uniqueness and art-style. Frozen Byte’s puzzle/platformer combo is by far one of the best games I’ve played recently in the action/adventure/puzzle/platformer hybrid/mix/#lotsofslashes genre. With a wizened narrator telling you this fantastic tale of three (two reluctant and one super-excited) heroes out on a journey to save the kingdom from the undead scourge. Sounds simple enough? Well, you can switch between Wizard, Thief or Knight by pressing 1, 2 or 3. What is the logic behind this? Well, their souls are bound so they share the same body, but different souls!

The game is also unique in the fact that it mashes up a fantasy setting with realistic physics. Throw crates and stones at your enemies with Knight, or swing from wood and shoot at the skeletons with Thief. Feeling creative? Well, Wizard has you covered as you can make crates and floating platforms with mouse gestures! There are many ways of solving puzzles and getting secret items in Trine and with four difficulty levels, the game can be played through many times!

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The game on Steam is available for $5 75% off from its original price of $19.99. The update features the v1.07 patch that adds a new level called Path to New Dawn! Also, however much I show you pictures of the game, nothing will tell you just how gorgeous it really is. You can try out a demo here, or watch the video below.

Have fun playing it and tell us how you liked it in the comments!

Green Man Gaming Signs Deal with Sony for SecuROM DRM

The independent PC digital distributor  Green Man Gaming has signed a deal with Sony DADC to include its SecuROM DRM in the distributor’s games. For the UK-based retailer, this deal is a sweet opening ceremony gift about 19 days before their release day.

Green Man Gaming

Digital Rights Management, though shunned by many of the gaming community, is a necessary evil for the protection of intellectual and digital property and the first barrier against piracy. Capcom, Take2 Interactive, Ubisoft and EA all use SecuROM. Online retailers such as GamersGate, Steam and Impulse use (or have used) SecuROM on some of their titles although the client for most of these digital distributors acts as a sort of DRM on its own.

Paul Sulyok, CEO of Green Man Gaming, said,

This partnership dramatically accelerates our initial offer to include the majority of AAA PC titles that are currently available. We are looking forward to working with SecuROM and bringing PC gaming to a wider audience through Green Man Gaming and our retail partners.

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While the site is not going to be up for a few more weeks, we will try to find as much info on this new digital distributor as possible. Stay tuned for more!

5 Great Apogee Games on Impulse.

The name Apogeeor 3D Realmsis synonymous with Duke Nukem Forever and thus is also known as troubled. The publisher/developer has quite a few great games under its belt and also that one biting wound of Duke Nukem Forever. Nevertheless, I remember Apogee vividly for it was their games that I played first when the first home computer was bought in our house. Duke Nukem, Wolfenstein 3D, Bio Menace, Commander Keen ah, those were the days. Now Impulse is selling 5 great Apogee games for $5.99 apiece. Yes, Rise of the Triad, Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold and Planet Strike, and of course Duke Nukem 3D and Duke Nukem: Manhatten Project can be yours at that great price! Also, the blurbs on Impulse are so yesteryear that in today’s context they sound very funny!

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Here is a glance at the awesome games of yesteryear!

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Rise of the Triad: As part of the High-risk United Nations Taskforce (HUNT) you must stop this maniac evil cult leader from killing millions of people. In this game, you can look both up and down, up to 45 degrees, to see what is above and below!! Wow! Yes, sir, this is 20 Megabytes of explosive graphics, animations, music and digitized sounds!that you can play with your friends over IPX!!

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Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold: With a title like that I am expecting nothing more but sheer awesomeness from this title. As Dr. Pyrus Goldfire’s main enemy, Blake Stone must find a way to stop his maniacal plan of… doing stuff. With Adlib & Sound Blaster support (FM and digitized sound effects, IN STEREO!)and diminishing lighting effectsthis game is an audio-visual extravaganza!

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Blake Stone: Planet Strike: It’s the 22nd century. British military agent Blake Stone is called again to save humanity from some other perilous peril. With a Real-time Automap, I can only dream of how great this game would have been when it was released!

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Duke Nukem 3D: C’mon, do you really need a descriptive paragraph on Duke Nukem? Where were you all these years?

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Duke Nukem Manhatten Project: Total Mutant Mayhem? Oh yeah, totally! Insane action and a rich 3D world to fight in, this game was pretty close to awesome when it was released. Buy it now!

So, which games did you buy in the Impulse Apogee catalog?

Steam Web Store Totally Looks Like Steam Client Store

I apologize if you did not get the slight Twitter-ish pun in the title. It was very subtle. Anyway, on to the point the Steam store that you access via your web-browser looks exactly like the Steam store you access from the client, complete with auto-buffering muted video  {Not anymore. See Updated news}  (at least on my Chrome). Ugh.

Steam client
This is the website on the browser now…

Steam client
…and this is the store on the Steam client.

Ogres and Autoplay
As well as the irritating auto-play option.

Why would Valve do such a thing, especially when users absolutely hated auto-play?

UPDATE

Well, it sure seems like Valve saw this post OR somehow it recognized my browser as a Steam client. Either way, everything’s back to normal now.