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The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 4, 2011, 11:18 AM
 
Wednesday News: Just let it end Edition

Sony Online Entertainment explains backtracking on safety of user data | Joystiq
When Sony Online Entertainment announced last night that it had lost several thousand customers' credit card numbers -- though the theft came weeks earlier, during the main attack affecting Sony's PlayStation Network and Qriocity services -- something didn't add up. Sony Online Entertainment had just one week earlier specifically said that its customers data was safe, because "SOE's systems and databases are separate from PSN's." So, how did SOE customer information leak if the "systems and databases" were different for PSN and SOE?

"While the two systems are distinct and operated separately, given that they are both under the Sony umbrella, there is some degree of architecture that overlaps," an SOE rep told Joystiq this afternoon. Speaking to the method used for breaching the information, the rep told us, "The intrusions were similar in nature," indicating that the same party perpetrated both thefts.

SOE also insisted once more that "This is NOT a second attack," and that yesterday's announcement was a result of "new information" that was discovered on May 1 "as part of our ongoing investigation of the external intrusion in April." It is still unknown when service will return to SOE's games, but the company says "it will be as soon as we are 100% confident that we can resume a safe and secure service."
I think these guys are bullshitting us. If its a different, independent network than it would require a separate attack. Even if they were coordinated to occur simultaneously, this sounds like then it qualifies as... a second attack.


But hey, it's ok, free worthless digital masks for everyone!
Sony sorry for latest breach, makes up for it with masks- Destructoid
Sony has officially announced the latest security breach, which affected Sony Online Entertainment and led to the outage of all related services. As well as apologizing, Sony has confirmed that it will be extending subscriptions, as well as a further "make good" plan.

Sony will be offering thirty day subscription extensions for its MMO users, and DC Universe Online players will also be getting a complimentary Batman-esque mask for their characters. The company said that it's working on something for Free Realms players, too.

Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
There are 1,560,791 Australian PSN accounts that have been compromised in the attack, of which 280,000 had accompanying credit card details.

...

A report from The Australian, meanwhile, alleges that Sony Australia "has refused to provide an iron-clad guarantee that it destroys or permanently de-identifies users' outdated personal information", which in this country is a violation of federal Privacy Act laws.

Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
The first team is from Data Forté, and according to Reuters it's led by "a former special agent with the U.S. Naval Criminal Investigative Service". The company specialises in the "preservation and collection of electronic evidence", and has experience with similar cases, having helped prosecute hackers responsible for data theft from a "major motion picture studio".

The second team is from Guidance Software, a data security firm. While specialising in the training of staff and the selling of corporate data protection software, Guidance has dispatched a number of "cyber-security detectives" from its ranks to help in the investigation.

The third company, Protiviti, is not involved in trying to catch those responsible. Instead, as a company specialising in things like audits, it is providing consultants to help Sony "clean up" the mess left by the attack and the fact the PSN has been down for over a week.
Well, they're certainly not skimping now.


Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
Reached for comment this morning, Sony Computer Entertainment of America spokesman Patrick Seybold said that Sony is cooperating with the committee.

"Sony is cooperating with the request for answers to the Committee's questions, and in fact will be providing our responses in advance of the deadline," he wrote in an email to Kotaku. "We informed the committee that we could not appear as early as this Wednesday because of our ongoing intensive investigation and management of this criminal cyberattack."

THQ planning multiplayer Homefront demo | Joystiq
Chances this thing runs smoothly? (Also, called it)


Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
It only does offline for half the price.


...and to close, the best review I've read in ages.
Conduit 2 review: More like Con-don't-do-it 2 | Joystiq
I'm not allowed enough space to truly get down to the essence of lackadaisical trash this game is, but dear, sweet Lord, I'm going to try.
Finally, after less than six hours of gameplay time, you find yourself in a showdown with Adams himself, who, not to be outdone by your supersuit, turns into an armored alien himself, and you fight him. He chases you around in a circle, and you shoot him a bunch. Then, when you win, your magic metal ball goes crazy, another conduit opens, and Abraham Lincoln comes out and tells you he's there to help. Then the credits roll.

Sorry for the spoiler, friends, but I can't not talk about it. I would swear it's Abraham Lincoln in a space marine suit. Even Ford says something like, "What the ... you're ..." and then he gets cut off. I'm pretty sure that if he were allowed to finish his sentence, he would have said, "What the ... you're ... 16th President of the United States Abraham Lincoln!" But then, the game is over, setting it up nicely for Conduit 3: Space Lincoln & The Emancipators of the Universe.
The graphics are a mess. Faces are badly pixelated, even in cutscenes. The only smooth, 2011 graphics are in the final cutscene. It's the only one fully-rendered. I'm absolutely not joking. The dialogue doesn't match with the lip movements of the characters. The spaceships look like they were lifted directly out of Halo: Combat Evolved, not to mention the "Siberia" map, which looks like B-roll from one of Bungie's snow-covered maps.

Speaking of the voice-acting, I can't say enough bad about it. Three of the main characters sound exactly the same. So much so that I had to pay attention to the credits to make sure they weren't. A few of the actors seem to think the game is an inside joke, and the rest don't. I'm not sure they all even had the same script. And to top it all off? I'm fairly sure the supreme female alien is voiced by a dude. I can't make this stuff up.
The creativity of the level design is ... well, it's non-existent. I know players complain about FPS games having the same maps over and over, or every room looking the same, but only Conduit 2 does it and has the guts to comment on it three-quarters of the way through. Ford asks, "Hey, wasn't I just in here?" and your little metal ball gives a big explanation about companies saving money on construction by making rooms very similar, "like they sometimes do in modern video games." Ha-ha! It's okay as long as it makes fun of itself, right?
That reminds me: The Wiimote controls are akin to trying to hold a drink steady while the train you're riding in crashes. The Classic Controller was steadier, and made the buttons easier to reach, but made the reticule move so slowly, it was way too tough to target anything before I was eaten by monsters.
Have a nice day folks!
     
exca1ibur
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May 4, 2011, 01:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Wednesday News: Just let it end Edition

Sony Online Entertainment explains backtracking on safety of user data | Joystiq

I think these guys are bullshitting us. If its a different, independent network than it would require a separate attack. Even if they were coordinated to occur simultaneously, this sounds like then it qualifies as... a second attack.
Not necessarily. If you get into the first network, from within you basically hack through to the next next network, FROM that first network. That whole process would all be considered just one attack just at various layers. The last network will assume you are coming from the next tier up. I've done this 'legit' at my own company, with passwords, when I couldn't get our VPN working to get to a dev system. It's basically the same concept.
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 4, 2011, 01:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by exca1ibur View Post
Not necessarily. If you get into the first network, from within you basically hack through to the next next network, FROM that first network. That whole process would all be considered just one attack just at various layers. The last network will assume you are coming from the next tier up. I've done this 'legit' at my own company, with passwords, when I couldn't get our VPN working to get to a dev system. It's basically the same concept.
Ah, ok.

Of course, that situation doesn't sound any better than a "second attack".
     
exca1ibur
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May 4, 2011, 01:44 PM
 
No, it doesn't.
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 4, 2011, 02:38 PM
 
I have to admit, I think I started the new thread at right time. I've never had multiple days of multiple news posts.

Sony: We knew PSN security flaws | Game Development | News by Develop
Sony chief information officer, Shinji Hasejima (pictured), this week confessed at a Tokyo press conference that security measures could have been improved.
“The vulnerability [of the network] was a known vulnerability, one known of in the world. But Sony was not aware of it... was not convinced of it,” he said.
“We are now trying to improve aspects of it”.

House hearing blasts Sony's "half-hearted, half-baked" hack response
Yet for me, the single most important question is simply this: Why weren’t Sony’s customers notified sooner of the cyberattack? I fundamentally believe that all consumers have a right to know when their personal information has been compromised, and Sony - as well as all other companies—have an overriding responsibility to alert them... immediately.

Sony: Anonymous provided cover for PSN attack
So how did the attackers gain entrance? Around two weeks ago, Sony was defending itself against constant denial of service attacks, and it seems the entirety of their online team was busy dealing with that threat.

"Detection was difficult because of the sheer sophistication of the intrusion," Sony wrote in the letter. "Second, detection was difficult because the criminal hackers exploited a system software vulnerability." Sony also claims that because its team was so busy defending against the denial of service attacks, detection of the hack was even more difficult. Sony claimed that this was "perhaps by design."

Sony also claimed it found a files on its server named "Anonymous," with the text "We are Legion." The document also places the blame of the denial of service attacks directly on Anonymous.

"In any case, those who participated in the denial of service attacks should understand that—whether they knew it or not—they were aiding in a well-planned, well-executed, large-scale theft that not only left Sony a victim, but also Sony's many customers around the world," Sony stated.

http://www.destructoid.com/hackers-b...3-200382.phtml
According to PS3 hacker and cop-magnet Graf Chokolo, OtherOS++ can "read or write anything" and is "very useful" for HV hacking. It exploits an older Firmware version and allows the user to control the PS3's memory and systems to a far greater degree than the original OtherOS feature.
Call me when PS2 emulation is available.
     
KCrosbie
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May 4, 2011, 05:29 PM
 
Damn! Mass Effect 3 delayed to 1st Qtr 2012

As much as I absolutely love this series, I'm ok with it being slightly delayed. No need to have a half-assed finale to the series.
     
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May 4, 2011, 06:36 PM
 
I wonder if this was a result of the reception DA2 got. Could EA have realized that rushing development results in lower quality games? Mindboggling.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
KCrosbie
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May 4, 2011, 07:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Wednesday News: Just let it end Edition

Sony Online Entertainment explains backtracking on safety of user data | Joystiq

I think these guys are bullshitting us. If its a different, independent network than it would require a separate attack. Even if they were coordinated to occur simultaneously, this sounds like then it qualifies as... a second attack.


But hey, it's ok, free worthless digital masks for everyone!
Sony sorry for latest breach, makes up for it with masks- Destructoid


... when a company like Sony completely tries to bulls#it their way out of trouble thinking everyone is stupid enough to fall for it. Then they try to offer some lame compensation package as a cheap ass apology. Gimme a break!

F'n Sony! Glad I didn't buy a PS3.

Done trolling.
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 5, 2011, 11:09 AM
 
Thursday News: Don't hate us, Hate Anonymous Edition

The Anonymous statement in full | Technology | guardian.co.uk
If a legitimate and honest investigation into the credit card is conducted, Anonymous will not be found liable. While we are a distributed and decentralized group, our "leadership" does not condone credit card theft. We are concerned with erosion of privacy and fair use, the spread of corporate feudalism, the abuse of power and the justifications of executives and leaders who believe themselves immune personally and financially for the actions they undertake in the name of corporations and public office.

Anunymous will continue its work in support of transparency and individual liberty; our adversaries will continue their work in support of secrecy and control. The FBI will continue to investigate us for crimes of civil disobedience while continuing to ignore the crimes planned by major corporations which use their services.

Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
Either there is no meaningful link between playing violent video games and aggressive behavior, or FIFA 11 is deadlier than Modern Warfare.
Or it could be the fact that, in a five-minute span, an experienced player can rack up 20 kills in a shooter, whereas a 3-0 result in a 90-minute football game is considered high scoring, making those goals a ton more significant than killing a zombie.
Soccer: Not the ideal comparison.


Kotaku, the Gamer’s Guide
A federal judge on Monday threw out a former college quarterback's claim against EA Sports, regarding the use of his likeness in past versions of NCAA Football. While the ruling clears Electronic Arts in a legal sense, Samuel Keller's claims still will proceed against the NCAA and the Collegiate Licensing Company, and the outcome still could have ramifications for the popular sports video game.
Wilken, however, did not grant the NCAA and CLC's motions to dismiss Keller's suit, which involves matters such as right to publicity and antitrust law. That case will proceed. For gamers, a ruling in Keller's favor still could alter how the rosters in NCAA Football are populated.
Yes, NCAA players, you are getting ****ed, but its not EAs fault. This time.
     
SpaceMonkey
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May 5, 2011, 12:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Soccer: Not the ideal comparison.
People used to blame soccer for violence all the time (British soccer hooliganism).

"One ticket to Washington, please. I have a date with destiny."
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 5, 2011, 03:41 PM
 
New Virtua Tennis 4 PS3 Exclusive Content Revealed - PlayStation 3 News at IGN
Today we are pleased to let you in on new exclusive PlayStation 3 content for Virtua Tennis 4. Playable from the moment you load up the game, PS3 tennis fans will be able to get their hands on tennis legends Boris Becker, Stefan Edberg and Pat Rafter. There will also be two exclusive mini-games: Pin Crusher and Net Blitz.
Alright, I've had enough. I don't have any reason to dislike Sony (outside of that debut pricing), but I'm actually starting to hate them for this shit. Arkham Asylum, LA Noire, Mortal Kombat... not only are they adding exclusive piddling content, but they seem to be purposely locking the XBOX out (i.e., Mortal Kombat wasn't allowed to add an XBOX exclusive fighter).

The best part is, the strategy doesn't even make sense. Their 1st party exclusives are the big selling appeal for the system. Unless they're trying to goose multiplatform game sales (which are, admittedly skewed in favor of the 360) I don't see the point. If your customer already owns a PS3 and a 360, what are you gaining here exactly?

Could you imagine if MS secured the rights to one completely exclusive map pack for CoD players (rather than time exclusive)? This is bullocks, and more anti-gamer than anything else.
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 6, 2011, 11:26 AM
 
Friday News: It's not up yet Edition

Stringer issues apology for 'inconvenience and concern' caused by PSN breach | Joystiq
"I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did. It's a fair question," he writes. "I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, but forensic analysis is a complex, time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had -- or had not -- been taken."

Reports on Sony server security lack accuracy (Update)- Destructoid
"Presumably, both companies are large enough that they could have afforded to spend an appropriate amount on security and privacy protections of their data; I have no information about what protections they had in place, although some news reports indicate that Sony was running software that was badly out of date, and had been warned about that risk."

Sony: PSN rebuild complete, internal testing in 'final stages' | Joystiq
According to the announcement, Sony is in "the final stages of internal testing of the new system, an important step towards restoring PlayStation Network and Qriocity services." The company didn't go so far as to estimate when PSN will be back online for everyone, but it's calling this a "milestone" in the process, so we'll hopefully learn more soon.

Sony to offer PSN users free identity theft protection for one year | Joystiq
In the latest turn of events involving the theft of personal data for millions of PlayStation Network users, Sony has announced that it is partnering with Debix to offer 12 months of identity theft protection free of charge. Debix's "AllClear ID" protection will be made available to PSN and Qriocity account holders in the US, with the console maker "working to make similar programs available in other countries/territories where applicable."
It's not a free game, but seems like a fair bit of compensation to me.


Hackers allegedly planning third attack on Sony- Destructoid
I'll save posting the story and just assume bad reporting and hearsay.


L.A. Noire to ship on three Xbox 360 discs- Destructoid
"In fact, players will only need to swap discs twice at natural breaks between cases without interrupting the flow of the game."
Both heartening and hilarious all at the same time. In some respects, the next gen can't get here soon enough.
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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May 6, 2011, 05:11 PM
 
Hoo boy, and so it begins...

Rumor: new Microsoft console dev kits at EA | Joystiq
According to an unnamed source speaking to Develop, development kits for a new Microsoft console are in the offices of one of EA's studios. The source, which does not work for either EA or Microsoft, had no specific information about the hardware except that it came in a PC shell and was shipped to EA last month.

That little information is actually enough to rule out the updated Xbox 360 dev kits revealed last month, since those come in Xbox-shaped cases. The source believes ("but did not have certain information," Develop disclaims) the new console will launch at the end of 2012, which would put it in direct competition with the Wii successor, and, if true, would make an E3 reveal seem likely (again, to compete with the new Nintendo console).

However, a Eurogamer source responded to this Develop article to note that a new Microsoft console probably won't be revealed at E3.
I feel like if the E3 reveal isn't gonna happen, it'll be in MS' best interest to quash the rumor by Monday.


ESRB: Burnout Crash to feature 'cartoony' mayhem, lobster attacks on PS3, 360 | Joystiq
As Burnout Crash makes its world tour of ratings boards, we're learning more about EA's racing game -- still in advance of any official announcement. According to the ESRB, Burnout Crash is coming to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and features a distinctly non-realistic style.

"From a top-down perspective," the content description reads, "players initiate crashes by driving 'cartoony' vehicles (e.g., cars, trucks, vans, buses) into busy intersections; multiple crashes trigger score multipliers and rack up large 'bills' of property damage." The description also reveals levels that urge players to destroy police cars before they are able to arrest you, and other levels in which you have to avoid UFOs, tornadoes and "lobster monsters."
Sounds like sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet.
     
exca1ibur
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May 6, 2011, 06:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Hoo boy, and so it begins...

Rumor: new Microsoft console dev kits at EA | Joystiq

I feel like if the E3 reveal isn't gonna happen, it'll be in MS' best interest to quash the rumor by Monday.
Ask and you shall receive... That story was updated a little while ago.

Update EA's director of corporate communications, Jeff Brown, told IGN that the story was "a total fabrication -- 100 percent not true."
     
Brien
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May 7, 2011, 10:38 PM
 
...And PSN won't be back 'til next week due to even more 'unforeseen intrusions' into Sony's network. Hah.