Become legend? Ambitious Destiny aims for gaming superstar status

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In Destiny, the newest video game from the creators of the blockbuster Halo franchise, players take the role of a “guardian,” a being with other-worldly powers tasked with protecting the last human city.

“You are Earth’s last hope,” a voice says in a June trailer for the game. “If you fail, everything you know — everything humans have ever known — will be gone forever.”

Sony Moves a Step Closer to Its Game Vision

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More than a decade ago, the Sony Corp. executive credited as the “Father of the PlayStation” predicted that one day videogames wouldn’t require a console, because the hardware would eventually “melt” into a network that linked players together. All they would need, Ken Kutaragi said, is a display and a controller.

Startups Adjust to Web’s Down Cycle

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Some companies that were preparing for a public offering after Facebook’s May IPO have shelved those plans. Others are distancing their businesses from those of Zynga and Groupon, amid concerns their companies will be tarred by the same brush. And some have watched their user growth trail off and are working to recapture the viral magic they once experienced.

Several Web startups have closed shop entirely. Color Labs Inc. raised $41 million in venture capital last year before even launching its social photo app for mobile devices, but it has since imploded and the app won’t be available after Dec. 31.

“There’s less heat in and around the SoLoMo market,” said Brian O’Malley, a venture capitalist at Battery Ventures in Menlo Park, Calif. “For a while, there was a suspended disbelief about how hard it is to build a company. Now that’s coming back to bite people.”

Take-Two Builds ‘Civilization’ Game for South Korea

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Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. is developing a new version of “Civilization,” one of its most storied franchises, featuring interconnected virtual worlds in which players compete. But it isn’t for the U.S., its largest market; this game is being developed for South Korea.

The New York company—best known for its “Grand Theft Auto” and “Borderlands” franchises—is the latest of a bevy of large U.S. game companies attempting to embrace the fast-growing Asian markets, where gaming consoles such as Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox and Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 3 barely have a presence. Instead, gamers there typically play on a personal computer at home or in Internet cafes.