‘Virtuaverse’ Soundtrack Is Another Impressive Genre-Spanning Offering From Master Boot Record

Courtesy: Master Boot Record

Electronic music artist Master Boot Record has been keeping himself rather busy lately.  The composer/musician, who will henceforth be referred to as MBR since his given name is unknown, released his latest album Floppy Disk Overdrive in March through Metal Blade Records.  Not long after its release, he released another collection of songs in the form of the Virtuaverse OST.  Virtuaverse is a point and click computer game whose plot centers on an artificial intelligence that controls the world, and the efforts of a group of people to change that.  The game’s graphics are a throwback to the look of computer and video games from the late 80s and early 90s while the soundtrack, again, crafted by MBR, is a full-on synthwave presentation.  The 13-song compilation is a surprisingly impressive work, too, thanks to its sound, which lends itself to comparisons to Daft Punk’s work on the Tron: Legacy OST.  In other words, this latest offering from MBR is a presentation that will greatly appeal to electronic music fans.  That is evidenced right from the soundtrack’s opener, the official theme song for the game.  It will be addressed shortly.  ‘Optimized User Experience,’ the soundtrack’s closer, is another example of what makes the soundtrack stand out.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘DDoS Attack,’ which comes just past the soundtrack’s midpoint, is one more positive point from the soundtrack.  It will be addressed later, too.  When it is considered along with the other noted songs and the rest of the soundtrack’s entries, the compilation in whole becomes a work that will appeal to any electronic music fan.

Master Boot Record’s official soundtrack to the video game Virtuaverse is a welcome offering from the electronic music composer/musician.  Having come shortly after the release of his latest album Floppy Disk Overdrive, the 13-song record will find a wide appeal among fans of electronic music.  That is proven in part through the compilation’s opener and the game’s theme song.  The use of the keyboard and electronics in this song leads to a comparison to works from Daft Punk on the soundtrack to Disney’s Tron: Legacy.  The incorporation of the guitar and drums into the mix adds even more impact to its presentation, as that element is used sparingly and is well-balanced with the song’s other elements. It likens itself to the material presented in Floppy Disk Overdrive.  The balance of those more 80s’ new wave style elements and the harder-edged sounds throughout the song adds even more to the composition’s appeal.  The overall dark, yet driving sound of the song in whole makes it a powerful opener for the soundtrack.  The use of the visuals in the game’s “trailer” — on its website — along with the song makes for even more impact.  By its end, the song leaves audiences wanting more in the best way possible, and audiences get more throughout the record, including the soundtrack’s equally notable closer, ‘Optimized User Experience.’

‘Optimized User Experience’ is another work that fits just as well in this compilation as it would in Floppy Disk Overdrive with its combination of electronics and guitars.  The song’s opening bars are grounded in a steady, single-note beat from the keyboards.  That beat is accompanied by what is meant to be a very “digital,” “computerized” sound.  Eventually, an actual melody joins the mix along with a steady, driving bass drum beat and guitars.  The whole of that sound creates what can only be described as a very industrial/electronic metal sound.  It is a sound that will appeal to fans of acts, such as Julien-K, Orgy and to a lesser extent, Gravity Kills.  The most notable aspect of the arrangement in whole is how is starts so subdued but gradually builds over the course of its four-minute-plus run time until eventually coming to a shattering finale that closes out the album on a truly powerful note.  The fact that the song builds so steadily and manages to keep listeners engaged and entertained throughout shows that the time and thought that went into the song’s composition paid off quite well.  The result is a work that closes out this soundtrack just as well as the game’s theme song opens the soundtrack.  It still is just one more of the soundtrack’s most notable works.  ‘DDoS Attack’ is one more example of what makes the Virtuaverse OST such an impressive new offering from MBR.

‘DDoS Attack’ is another very Daft Punk-eque work in its opening bars, with the keyboards and electronics creating a very brooding, melancholy and mysterious opening.  The sense that this approach creates in listeners ensures listeners’ engagement right off the bat.  The eventual addition of the guitar (effects?) and the melody to the arrangement builds on the foundation formed early on in the song, continuing the entertainment.  As the song progresses, that addition of the guitars to the mix (and the drums) makes for even more of a comparison to works from Orgy than that of any of the collection’s other songs.  The general effect of the composition is wholly engaging and entertaining.  It shows once more why this compilation, despite being a soundtrack, is still another impressive collection of original works from Master Boot Record that will appeal not just to gamers but to rock and metal fans and to those of electronic music and EDM even.  Keeping that in mind, this song, along with the other arrangements noted here and the rest of the collection’s featured works, make this soundtrack one of the biggest and best surprises of the year.

Master Boot Record’s soundtrack to the video game Virtuaverse is a surprisingly enjoyable new offering from the electronic/rock composer/musician Master Boot Record.  It takes the successes of each of his past recordings (of which there are many) and builds on them with even more new material and sounds.  From the soundtrack’s opener to its finale, the compilation’s synthwave sounds and arrangements change things up constantly while also keeping things interesting.  The result, as noted through the trio of songs examined here, is a work that despite being a soundtrack, a quite pleasant surprise for so many audiences.  It is available now through his official bandcamp page.

More information on the Virtuaverse OST is available online along with all of Master Boot Record’s latest news at:

 

 

 

Websitehttp://masterbootrecord.bandcamp.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/masterbootrecordmusic

 

 

 

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My Town Games, Discovery Inc. Partner To Create New Co-Branded Games

Courtesy: My Town Discovery/Andrea Blain PR

My Town Games has partnered with Discovery, Inc. for a first of its kind agreement to create co-branded games that allow children to have open-ended play.

Courtesy: My Town Discovery/Andrea Blain PR

The new coordinated effort will launch later this summer as “My Town Discovery” a game aimed at children ages 6-12.  It features a virtual world in which children can “hang out” with their friends and explore their community.  That includes  visiting the Science Discover Museum — designed my My Town and Discovery, Inc. — seeing the school that they will attend in the fall, playing mini-games and more.

Matt Bonaccorso, Director, Discovery Inc. Marketing & Digital Products, said Discovery, Inc. was happy to be partnering with My Town Games for the new effort.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with My Town to encourage young boys and girls to discover and learn about their community via this innovative platform,” Bonaccorso said.

Courtesy: My Town Discovery/Andrea Blain PR

My Town Discovery will debut at the App Store and Google Play as a 7-day free trial.  After the trial ends, game players will have the option to “join the club” with a monthly subscription fee.  As an added bonus, My Town Discovery will specially-branded “did you know…” educational content aimed at its young users.

On a side note, My Town Discovery will initially not have any IAPs.  More games and adventures will be added in the coming months.

More information on My Town Games is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.my-town.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mytowngames

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mytowngames

 

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ELEAGUE Crowns Its First Champions

Courtesy: Turner/WME - IMG

Courtesy: Turner/WME – IMG

ELEAGUE has crowned its very first champion.

The professional gaming league created by Turner and WME – IMG has crowned the champion of its inaugural season.  Virtus.pro defeated Fnatic Saturday 16 – 10 (Cobble) and 16 – 8 (Mirage) at the league’s championship showdown.  The match was aired live on TBS from the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta, Georgia.  Audiences can see the final moments of the championship match online now here.  More information on ELEAGUE is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://e-league.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ELeagueGaming

 

 

 

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Snoop Dogg Featured In New COD: Ghosts Voice Pack

Courtesy:  Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Snoop Dog is back.

The rapper/reggae artist will be part of Activision’s new upcoming Call of Duty: Ghosts Voice pack. He will be the announcer for the first of the new COD: Ghosts voice packs. He actually narrates the various scenes through which players make their way in the voice packs. He will even keep track of kill streaks and alert players to enemies as he narrates the game in the new voice pack.

The new Snoop Dogg voice pack and other customizations are all available now for Xbox Live. A release date for its availability on other platforms will be announced at a later date. Gamers can check out a video interview with Snoop Dogg right now online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LT1ycFs618g&feature=youtu.be. Snoop discusses in his interview why he agreed to be part of the new COD Voice Pack. He notes that the franchise’s popularity is one of the reasons that he agreed to be part of the new voice pack. Fans can even check out a few samples of Snoop Dogg’s voice over work on the new Voice Pack as part of the interview.

All of the latest news on Call of Duty: Ghosts is available online at http://www.facebook.com/CallofDuty and http://twitter.com/callofduty. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Activision, Infinity Ward Debut New COD Trailer

Courtesy:  Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy:  Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Mark your calendars, gamers.  On November 5th, 2013, the latest installment in the highly successful Call of Duty franchise will be released. In anticipation of the game, the very first trailer for Call of Duty: Ghosts has been released.  It made its debut this morning at Microsoft’s press event announcing what gamers can expect to come out this Fall.  The trailer shows that this proves to be the biggest game in the franchise yet.  Gamers get to go through big cities, jungle backdrops, and even more throughout the course of this upcoming game.  Its graphics live up to the expectations created by the series’ previous installments.

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Here’s the gist of the storyline according to Mark Rubin, Executive Producer at Infinity Ward.  The game’s creators worked with Traffic and Syriana writer Stephen Gaghan on the story.  What players get in this new installment is a world n which the United States military has been devastated by a giant event.  The nation’s government is for all intents and purposes, in shambles.  Players get to play as one of the remaining U.S. military forces against those that caused all of this death and destruction.  The Ghosts are “ghost soldiers.”  They are the elite of the elite, the ultimate cream of the crop.  Fans who want even more info on the game, from its plot to everything on how the game came to life, they can check out a behind the scenes featurette on the game now at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B00xKmtyfaY.

COD Ghosts_Jungle Environment

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

The mix of the trailer’s music bed and voice-over declaring, “We are ghosts, fighting for something that can’t be killed” will send chills up anyone’s spines, gamer or not.  Fans can check it out for themselves now, online right here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zxnx3W-HA18.  Also provided throughout this article is just a handful of shots from the game that is to come this holiday shopping season.  So check it out, and spread the word to the gamers of the world.  Call of Duty: Ghosts is coming!

Courtesy:  Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

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Phil’s Picks Giving Away Big Prize For Gamers

The Phil’s Picks FB page and blog are holding a very special contest beginning Monday, May 6th.  Beginning Monday, three lucky gamers will win a DLC copy of the new Call of Duty Black Ops II DLC Map Pack, ‘Uprising’ for either Xbox or PS3 via download code.  And one VERY lucky gamer will win a COD mega grand prize that includes the following:  (1) copy of the brand new Call of Duty Mob of the Dead Soundtrack, (1) copy of the new COD Black Ops II Uprising DLC Map Pack, ‘Uprising’ via download code AND (1) physical copy of Call of Duty Black Ops II for Xbox or PS3.  The winner of this mega grand prize gets to choose on which platform he or she will get to play the new COD Black Ops II game.

All copies of the new Black Ops II DLC Map Pack, ‘Uprising’ will be sent out via code, rather than physical copy.  Codes will be sent to the winners from the Phil’s Picks FB page.  And to sweeten the deal, winners of the DLC Map Pack codes will also get to choose whether the code is for Xbox or PS3, too.  The codes work differently for each platform.  So we want to make certain that winners are able to play the game on the platform of their choice.

So how does one go about having the chance to win one of these prizes?  The answer is simple.  Beginning at 12am EST on Monday, May 6th, anyone that wants to enter for a chance will have to get as many people as possible to “Like” the Phil’s Picks Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/philspicks.  Each person that “Likes” the Phil’s Picks Facebook page has to mention who got them to “Like” the Phil’s Picks Facebook page.  On Friday, May 10th at 9am EST, the person who has gotten the most people to “Like” the Phil’s Picks Facebook page will win the grand prize.  The next three people to get the most “Likes” for the Phil’s Picks Facebook page will each get a download code for the new Call of Duty DLC Map Pack, ‘Uprising’ for the platform of their choice; either Xbox or PS3.  Anyone with questions can send a message to the Phil’s Picks Facebook page for clarification.  Again, the contest begins Monday, May 6th at 12am EST, and ends Friday, May 10th at 9am EST.  The only way to win is to get your friends and family to “Like” the Phil’s Picks Facebook page.  Best of luck and spread the word!

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

New COD Game Coming This Fall From Activision, Infinity Ward

Courtesy:  Activision/Infinity Ward

Courtesy: Activision/Infinity Ward

Activision is set to release the latest in its highly successful series of games in its Call of Duty video game franchise.  The company has announced that it will release a brand new game this fall titled, Call of Duty: Ghosts on November 5th, just in time for the annual holiday shopping season.  Call of Duty: Ghosts is being touted as being a benchmark for the next generation of video games. 

Call of Duty: Ghosts was developed by Activision Blizzard and Infinity Ward, the studio responsible for the original Call of Duty and the even more popular Call of Duty: Modern Warfare series.  This latest installment in the COD franchise is set in a whole new world.  It offers to players all new characters, and new gaming experience.  Expectations are very high for this brand new, upcoming release.  “Infinity Ward set the gold standard for first-person action for a generation, and they’re going to do it again with Call of Duty: Ghosts,” said Eric Hirschberg, CEO of Activision Publishing, Inc.  “Ghosts delivers an all-new story, all-new characters, an all-new Call of Duty world, all powered by a next generation Call of Duty engine, which is a leap forward for the franchise. Infinity Ward is going all-in to create the next generation of Call of Duty worthy of the world’s greatest fans.”

Call of Duty: Ghosts isn’t going to be just any other game.  And as Infinity Ward Executive Producer Mark Ward said of the game, it’s going to be just that; a whole new gaming experience for long-time fans of the COD series.  “Everyone was expecting us to make Modern Warfare 4, which would have been the safe thing to do. But we’re not resting on our laurels,” Ward said.  “We saw the console transition as the perfect opportunity to start a new chapter for Call of Duty. So we’re building a new sub-brand, a new engine, and a lot of new ideas and experiences for our players. We can’t wait to share them with our community.” 

While the game’s official release is still roughly seven months out, fans can still pre-order it beginning now.  It can be pre-ordered at retail outlets around the world.  It will be released on Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and PC on the same day.  Fans can get an early look at the upcoming release online on Tuesday, May 21st at 1pm EST on Xbox LIVE, Xbox.com, or on Spike TV.  Fans can keep up with all the latest news on this upcoming release online at http://www.callofduty/com/ghosts, http://www.facebook.com/CODGhosts, and on Twitter at @InfinityWard.  Call of Duty: Ghosts is not yet rated.

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Treyarch, Activision Offering DLC Soundtrack

Courtesy:  Treyarch/Activision

Courtesy: Treyarch/Activision

Fans of the wildly popular Call of Duty video game series have even more reason to celebrate today.  The latest DLC (Downloadable Content) package includes a new map titled, “Mob of the Dead”, which lets users play as one of a group of famed prohibition era gangsters stuck in Alcatraz prison facing off against zombie hordes.  Now thanks to Treyarch and Activision, fans of the COD series can purchase the soundtrack to the specific map.  The soundtrack can be downloaded via iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Google Play, and many other outlets.  It is being made available for download by BFM Digital.  The soundtrack includes twenty-four original compositions as well as bonus tracks by Tranzit and Die Rise.

The “Mob of the Dead” map allows players to play as Billy Handsome, Al “The Weasel” Arlington, Salvatore “Sal” DeLuca, and Michael “Finn” O’Leary.  The gangsters are in Alcatraz because they are serving time there.  And in order to survive, the gangsters have to face zombie hordes that inhabit the prison. 

Fans can purchase Uprising–the new Black Ops II DLC—as a standalone map pack for a suggested retail price of $14.99 first, exclusively on Xbox Live.  Call of Duty: Black Ops II is sold separate from the recent DLCs and is needed in order to play the extra maps.  For more information on the new “Mob of the Dead” soundtrack and all the latest COD news, go online to http://www.callofduty.com

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Treyarch, Activision Release New Black Ops II DLC Map Pack

Courtesy:  Activision/Treyarch Studios

Courtesy: Activision/Treyarch Studios

Good news, gamers.  Treyarch and Activision are set to release another addition to the massive hit, Call of Duty Black Ops II.  The companies will release their latest Downloadable Content (DLC) for the game next Tuesday, April 16thCall of Duty Black Ops II: Uprising is the latest addition to the hit game.  Uprising offers fans four new maps set around the world.  “Magma” takes gamers into a Japanese village that has been overrun by volcanic eruptions and lava.  “Encore” takes players into a deserted London music festival.  It offers plenty of opportunities for close-in combat between players.  “”Vertigo” takes players to India and a dizzying high-rise that features a high-tech lab and lots more.  And last, “Studio” takes fans back to the COD: Firing Range, which is a fan favorite from the original Call of Duty: Black Ops.  It takes place on a Hollywood back lot with a number of varying cinematic themes.

The four new maps offered in Uprising are just part of what fans have to look forward to this time out.  Fans of the previous DLC will take joy in the inclusion of the Mob of The Dead Zombies experience.  It lets users go back in time to Alcatraz Prison during Prohibition time and face off against zombies as one of the infamous gangsters, Billy Handsome (Ray Liotta), Al “The Weasel” Arlington (Joe Pantoliano), Salvatore “Sal” DeLuca (Chazz Palminteri), and Michael “Finn” O’Leary (Michael Madsen).  This new map includes the new feature, Purgatory, which lets users actually go into the afterlife to face even more zombies.  Treyarch Studios head Mark Lamia commented on this new feature along with the rest of the new DLC.  He expressed his excitement at what gamers get in this latest update to the Black Ops II franchise.  “With Uprising, the team has really outdone itself again,” he said.  “In addition to creating four new multiplayer maps, the studio has been hard at work on the zombies front to surpass what we accomplished with Call of the Dead.  What they’ve done this time around is nothing Zombies fans have seen before – and if you don’t believe me, just wait until you get into Purgatory.”

Call of Duty Black Ops II: Uprising is rated M for Mature by the ESRB.  It will be available first, exclusively on Xbox LIVE for 1200 Microsoft Points on April 16th.  It is also available in the Call of Duty: Black Ops II DLC Season Pass* in which fans can buy all four massive DLC Map Packs planned for this year.  The Season Pass also allows fans to receive the Nuketown Zombies bonus map, and an additional exclusive in-game calling card at an MSRP of $49.99 or 4,000 Microsoft Points – a discount of 800 Microsoft Points off the individual purchase of all four DLC Map Packs.

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Activision, Treyarch Release New Black Ops II Map Pack

Courtesy:  Activision/Treyarch

Courtesy: Activision/Treyarch

Good news gamers!  Activision and Treyarch have announced the release of a brand new map for the record-setting game that is Black Ops II.  The new Downloadable Content (DLC) Map Pack is the first of four packs to be released.  Titled, “Revolution”, the new map offers fans loads of new content, including twice the zombies in the “Die Rise” and “Turned.”  The second of the maps actually literally turns the tables on players, allowing them to play not as the zombie killers, but as the zombies.

Along with the maps for zombie fanatics, “Revolution” also includes four brand new multi-player maps that are set in spots around the world.  The first of those maps is “Downhill.”  “Downhill” is set against the classic chateau in the alps.  It’s the perfect juxtaposition of the firefight that is set to ensue.  Second up is “Mirage.”  “Mirage” is obviously set in a desert villa that has been hit hard by the desert’s sand.  Next up is a hydroelectric dam in Pakistan for “Hydro.”  And last of the four new maps is “Grind.”  What could that possible be?  Short and simple, this map is set against a skate park in Venice Beach, California.  Players have to use the skate ramps and setups to avoid enemy fire.

The new Call of Duty: Revolution DLC Map Pack is available now in stores for $14.99 or for 1200 Microsoft Points.  It is also available in the Black Ops II DLC Season Pass.  It is rated “M” for Mature (Blood and gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language, Suggestive Themes, Use of Drugs – Content suitable for gamers age 18 and older).  More information on the new Black Ops II DLC Map Pack and the whole COD franchise is available online at http://www.callofduty/blackops2 and http://www.facebook.com/codblackops.

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