Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

Spotlight

Digital FoundryX360 vs. PS3 Face-Off: Round Seven

One man, 12 games, many arguments.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

Walking, rather than running.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

IO's Jens Peter Kurup talks online multiplayer and offline co-op.

Key events

IO Interactive cancels everything that isn't Hitman, including Kane & Lynch

Hitman developer IO Interactive has announced that it's laying off "almost half" its staff to "focus resolutely on the future vision for the Hitman franchise."

In a statement obtained by Eurogamer, Square Enix VP of corporate communications Chris Glover said, "The studio will focus resolutely on the future vision for the Hitman franchise and is in pre-production on a new AAA Hitman project. However we have taken the difficult decision to cancel other studio projects and initiatives at IO and reduce the workforce in this studio, which will impact almost half of the employees currently at IO, as we make internal adjustments to face the challenges of today's market."

"For those affected, we are extremely grateful for the hard work which they have contributed, and where it's possible and appropriate to relocate staff to open positions at other studios within the group, we will try to do so. We are also reaching out to other companies for outplacement opportunities. We sincerely wish them well in their future careers."

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Kane & Lynch 2 demo on PSN today

Plus: Fists of Plastic punched to £4.

There's a Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days demo for everybody on the PlayStation Store today, provided, you know, you're mature enough. This single-player and multiplayer sampler was offered to PlayStation Plus subscribers on Monday. They're worth it.

Demo Roundup - Christmas to 14th Jan

What you might have missed.

The Club or Yakuza 3. Those are our pick of the new demos. You can probably scoot off now. Not a lot else to suggest unless you own a PC. Oh, you do. Better read on then!

X360 vs. PS3 Face-Off: Round Seven

Digital FoundryX360 vs. PS3 Face-Off: Round Seven

One man, 12 games, many arguments.

After a joyous yuletide spent playing Naughty Dog's supreme Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, it's back to the frontlines of the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 console war for this reporter, with the latest battery of cross-platform confrontations. You know the score by now: impartial criticism on each multi-format release is the name of the game, the aim being to supplement the original Eurogamer reviews with additional commentary relevant to each version of the game, with gameplay the primary concern.

As is the norm with our face-off comparison features, each game feature is supplemented with a range of ultra-clean screengrabs losslessly extracted from the HDMI ports of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 Elite. A Digital Foundry HD capture station is used to acquire every last pixel output by the consoles at full 24-bit precision, with the unit calibrated to full-range RGB and both systems set up likewise. As 1080p performance is so variable on PlayStation 3, we've included screenshots of this video mode in action where applicable and how the results compare to the Xbox 360's in-built GPU scaler on the same titles.

So... the games then. A colossal array of wares to get through in what is the biggest face-off feature yet; 12 titles that between them rate a 'not bad at all' 7.5/10 when their Eurogamer review scores are taken as an average.

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One is a flawed mercenary and the other is a medicated psychopath, but that hasn't stopped Kane & Lynch from making their way to Xbox Live in demo form, having appeared on PlayStation Network earlier this month.

Kane & Lynch demo on PAL PSN

Plus SOCOM/Syphon PSP demos.

While our American friends dance around with High Velocity Bowling, Wild Arms and even a silly holiday in November, fortunes are mixed for European PlayStation fans this week - with a Kane & Lynch demo the main PS3 Store highlight.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

Walking, rather than running.

As much as the Hitman series has grown into one of the most interesting shooters around, IO Interactive is smart enough to know when Agent 47 needs to stroke his bar-coded bald bonce and take a few years off. We've been here before, of course. A year after Silent Assassin hit, the Danish developer released the sorely under-rated Freedom Fighters - a game, lest we forget, that Tom reckoned had "the best team-mate AI ever".

And now, having squeezed out a further two Hitman titles since, the Danish developer has revisited some of the squad-based mechanics of its EA-published title for its latest, Kane & Lynch: Dead Men.

As you'll have noticed from the striking artwork currently adorning billboards, the two disturbing looking men at the centre of the game aren't your regular action heroes here to save the day from terrorism plots, impending Armageddon, alien invasions or Jeremy Kyle - and thank the flaming lord for that. As someone who has fought in the trenches in the war against gaming cliché, IO deserves a big manly slap on the back for coming up with a game concept that's at least trying to do something different.

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EGTV: Kane & Lynch vids

The power of two.

Everybody loves a great action double act: Mario and Sonic, Ratchet and Clank, Steve McClaren and a giant baseball bat to the face. We can't be sure whether Kane or Lynch, eponymous stars of IO's new third-person action-fest, would think it a good idea to give a 22 year-old goalkeeper his competitive international debut in a qualify-or-die clincher. But they sure know how to handle a firearm.

Xbox 360: 12 Games of Christmas

Play these with mince wine.

It is now dark when we walk home and birds are either dropping out of trees in frozen lumps or going somewhere much nicer for their holidays. And, as always happens, the shops are hoisting their Christmas decorations up and getting us all worried about buying presents because we never know what they want is it socks or aftershave. So, we thought we would join in.

Games for Windows Live update

Games for Windows Live update

New features for upcoming games.

Microsoft has said that version 1.2 of its Games for Windows Live service will be spouted out across the Internet in November, GamesIndustry.biz reports.

It will let you obtain Achievements while playing offline and give you the ability to see if you can join friends in their games, along with some other user interface bits and pieces yet to be specified.

So far five games have been announced as supporting the updated service, including The Club and Universe at War from SEGA; Kane & Lynch from Eidos; and Gears of War and Viva Piñata from Microsoft.

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Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

Multiplayer and more unveiled.

"Play it like a soldier and you'll lose. Play it like a criminal and you'll win." That's the advice of IO Interactive on the online multiplayer mode in Kane & Lynch: Dead Men. It's good advice. You may have captured more flags than you've had hot deathmatches, but you're not in the army now. This mode is about strategy, not just shooting. It's about betrayal and greed and revenge. It's about working as a team in a world where it's every man for himself. But most of all, it's about swearing.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

IO's Jens Peter Kurup talks online multiplayer and offline co-op.

IO Interactive is trying to do something different with the online multiplayer mode in Kane & Lynch: Dead Men. As you'll know if you've read our preview, it's titled Fragile Alliance and it's all about greed, betrayal and revenge. You have to work with other players at the start of each round to take out police, but by the end it's every man for himself.

Kane & Lynch dated

Plus Lara and Agent 47 chatter.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men will be released on 23rd November in Europe following a 20th November launch across the pond.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

IO able to impress.

Having just spent about 15 minutes giving us the most intricate back story explanation we've ever heard for a videogame, IO's exhausted art director Martin Kramme Guldbaek sighs. "Doing this makes it sound like a movie pitch." Indeed it does. But in the best way possible.

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

IO on life after Hitman.

If we had lazyitis, we'd probably take one look at Kane & Lynch and diagnose it as 'Freedom Fighters meets Hitman', with a more ambitious narrative. But that would be lazy, even if it turns out to be true. Instead, we'll continue to quote the official line in the absence of actually having had a hands-on. In Eidos' bestest PR speak, we're told to look forward to a "story-driven, fully co-operative third-person action shooter title, with intuitive crew mechanics, heavily populated destructible real-world scenarios, a volatile partnership and brutal attitude."

Io's Kane & Lynch revealed

Hitman dev doing something new.

Hitman developer Io Interactive is hard at work on a new PC and Xbox 360 game called Kane & Lynch: Dead Men.