Shacknews - Alice O'Connor

From today, you can legally ride a stunt motorcycle on trains, around the office, and even in the toilet. Oh no, but this is all a ruse: I mean in a video game, not in real life, as you wholly believed. Oh, you! Joe Danger Touch hit iDevices today, you see, putting the stunts of Joe Danger in your pocket.

Hello Games has turned its icy hot stunter of a platformer into an autorunner, where you'll need to guide Joe to perform snazzy tricks, collect points, and all those video game things.

Joe Danger Touch is available now from the iTunes App Store for $2.99. It does have in-app purchases for unlocks, if you don't fancy playing enough to earn them naturally.

Shacknews - John Keefer

This month's software sales didn't change much from last month, with Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 holding the top spot for the second straight month. The game was also the year's best seller, marking the fourth straight year a Call of Duty game has held the number one position.

Only two new games cracked the top 10: Far Cry 3, which came out December 4, and New Super Mario Bros. 2 for the 3DS, While Just Dance 4 actually jumped two spots from #4 in November to #2 in December. Far Cry 3's launch was the second most successful December debut since NPD began tracking retail sales in 1995.

Overall, software sales for the month were down 27 percent ($2.16 billion to $1.58 billion) from the same time last year, and down 22 percent ($9.12 billion to $7.09 billion) from 2011.

"A major culprit in the decline in retail sales in 2012 was the lack of new releases with 29 percent less SKUs across consoles, portables, and PCs," said NPD analyst Liam Callahan. "However, the SKUs that were released generated 8 percent more units per SKU and 11 percent more dollars per SKU."

The Xbox 360 continued to be king of the consoles, marking 17 months on top. The Wii U, however, sold less units this December than the Wii in December it launched (2006), but dollar sales were up 11 percent when comparing the 2006 Wii numbers to 2012 Wii U figures.

    December Top 10 Games (New Physical Retail only; across all platforms including PC)

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops II (360, PS3, PC, Wii U)
  • Just Dance 4 (Wii, 360, Wii U, PS3)
  • Halo 4 (360)
  • Assassin's Creed III (360, PS3, Wii U, PC)
  • Madden NFL 13 (360, PS3, Wii, PSV)
  • Far Cry 3 (360 PS3, PC)
  • NBA 2K13 (360, PS3, Wii, PSP, PC)
  • Skylanders Giants (Wii, 360, PS3, 3DS, Wii U)
  • New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
  • FIFA Soccer 13 (360, PS3, PSV, Wii, 3DS, PSP, Wii U)

Losing their top-10 position this month: Need for Speed: Most Wanted and WWE 13.

The annual list for 2012:

    Annual Top 10 Games (New Physical Retail only; across all platforms including PC)

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops II (360, PS3, PC, Wii U)
  • Madden NFL 13 (360, PS3, Wii, PSV)
  • Halo 4 (360)
  • Assassin's Creed III (360, PS3, Wii U, PC)
  • Just Dance 4 (Wii, 360, Wii U, PS3)
  • NBA 2K13 (360, PS3, Wii, PSP, PC)
  • Borderlands 2 (360 PS3, PC)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (360, PS3, Wii, PC)
  • Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes (Wii, 360, NDS, PS3, 3DS, PSV, PC)
  • FIFA Soccer 13 (360, PS3, PSV, Wii, 3DS, PSP, Wii U)

Shacknews - Steve Watts

NBA 2K13 has opened up its pre-order bonus as downloadable content. The NBA All-Star pack is available on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 for $4.99 (400 MSP). It packages together four events: a three point shootout, slam dunk contest, Rising Stars Challenge Game, and East v. West All-Star Game.

The three point shootout and slam dunk contest pits classic stars against modern-day ones, while the Rising Stars and All-Star game features 2012 all-stars. Once the 2013 participants have been finalized through this year's voting, the roster will update to feature them in the games instead.

NBA 2K13 broke franchise sales records by selling 49% more than the previous record holder, 2K11.

Shacknews - John Keefer

In a cyberpunk game, it shouldn't be a surprise that developer CD Projekt Red embedded a secret message in its just-released first teaser trailer for Cyberpunk 2077. The tip? The Witcher developer plans on announcing another game on February 5.

The cryptic clue was uncovered by NeoGAF user Peace Walker, and explains that the announcement involves a "fully open-world game with an intense story" that is much closer to completion than Cyberpunk 2077. With the line "you can probably guess the game we're talking about," it isn't a huge leap to imagine the game is The Witcher 3. We were definitely enamored with it's predecessor (pictured above), so a sequel will be most welcome. And considering the strong sales for the series, it seems to make business sense as well.

We'll bring you all the details when they become available. Maybe they will announce the release of the REDkit mod tools as well.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Those disappointed that the Wii U did not launch with a virtual console to play older games the way the Wii did in 2006, take heart. Nintendo is working on a Wii U version, and apparently the gamepad will be all that is needed.

"We do not have any specifics to share at this time," an unnamed Nintendo rep told Polygon. "However, we are moving ahead with development of a Virtual Console for Wii U, too, and we plan to make it so you can play it on the Wii U GamePad alone."

Right now, the Wii U can only access the Wii virtual console library through file transfer (with an online-connected Wii), and requires the Wii Remote controller. No word yet on how Nintendo will expand on Wii's existing library for the Wii U initially, if at all.

Shacknews - Nikole Zivalich

To kick things off, a new Fallout thing is happening. Erik Todd Dellums, voice of Three Dog from Fallout 3, recently proclaimed that "there may be more of the Dog coming!" While noting the cruelty of the tease, he added that he was "given permission to release that tease," whatever that means. Next, Double Fine's The Cave is right around the corner, even with the still-nebulous "January" release listed. But it's close enough to be available for pre-order on Steam, and Valve has partnered to promote it the best way it knows how: Team Fortress 2 goodies. Finally, The Walking Dead's retail release has been less than stellar on the Xbox 360. Players have complained of severe hitching that has prevented them from completing some of the game's quick-time events, which could just halt progress completely. Telltale has started offering a solution: just take the digital version.

You can also watch this episode on YouTube. And, don't forget to subscribe to get the latest episodes as they go up.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Update: Includes comments from the developer found in hidden message at the end of the trailer.

CD Projekt Red already had us intrigued with the thought of a Cyberpunk 2020-style game teleported some 57 years into the future. But its first teaser for Cyberpunk 2077 showing a bloodied blonde with alien-like augments kneeling in the middle of a mass of bodies just raised this game quite high on my want-to-play list. Oh, and bullets shatter on her face.

The trailer highlights the premise of the game where humans become addicted to cybernetics and eventually rebel against their biological "meatbag" existence. When these humans go nuts, as the blonde apparently has, the Psycho Squad is called in to bring them down. There is a hint that the woman may be recruited as a new member of the team. The song, "Bullets" by Archive, is a perfect fit for the video.

A bit more was revealed about the setting for the game as well, detailing Night City and a new addiction called the braindance, where people relive the actions and emotions of other people through what is essential a DVR augmentation for the brain. All the exhilaration without the effort.

In a message hidden near the end of the video, CD Projekt acknowledges that this is just a teaser and that they are working on a "proper trailer" for sometime in the future. The release of the open-world game is still way off, as the developer said it is still building its team for the game.

Shacknews - John Keefer

The tension is getting thicker, as is the marketing hype, surrounding the upcoming Aliens: Colonial Marines. In the latest installment of its short "From Concept to Game" trailers, developer Gearbox takes us inside an Alien Hive.

In much the same vein as the Hadley's Hope video, there is no action. But the music, coupled with the transformation of the U.S.S. Sulaco's Engineering section into a familiar-looking hive, has you anticipating a xenomorph bursting onto the screen any second.

You'll be able to act on your instincts to blast anything that moves when the game come to PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U and PC on February 12.

Shacknews - Steve Watts

The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct, the game adaptation that is itself based on the TV adaptation of the comic book, is coming to North America on March 26. Activision has now confirmed that in addition to the known PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 versions, it will be coming to the Wii U as well.

VideoGamer reports that the Wii U version will use the GamePad for "super-streamlined" inventory management, according to Terminal Reality's Glenn Gamble. "Literally as you're playing you can be tapping items, dropping them, throwing them, equipping them, stuff like that," Gamble said. "So the controls are just a lot more streamlined [on Wii U], but overall all three [versions] are pretty much the same."

The game stars the Dixon brothers, putting the player into the shoes of the likeable crossbow-wielding Daryl, accompanied by his significantly less likable brother Merle. It takes place just before the show begins, so we'll see the events leading up to the pair meeting the group.

"Our games takes cues off of the show itself," Gamble said. "When we first started on the game, we got AMC's bible, all the crazy things that they do in the show, and that's pretty much what we matched the game on. We're trying to be as close and as faithful to the show as possible."

Shacknews - Steve Watts

The long-coming Skulls of the Shogun finally has a release date, so mark your calendars for January 30. It will hit the PC and Xbox 360 that day for $14.99 (1200 MSP) or Windows Phone for $6.99. All of the versions will be able to play against each other cross-platform.

The strategy title features a 15-hour campaign full of samurai ghosts and animal monks, along with four-player local and online multiplayer.

"After three and a half years, Skulls of the Shogun is finally ready to be released," said 17-BIT Founder and CEO, Jake Kazdal, in the announcement. "We're ecstatic we could bring Skulls to all four of Microsoft's platforms, and bring them all together with cross-platform functionality. We appreciate the excitement and patience by all the Skulls of the Shogun fans, and we here at 17-BIT believe the wait will be well worth it."

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