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Gaming News Round-Up: September 16th, 2004

Today's round-up includes more on the game/music video melange, optimistic words from those behind the Sega/Sammy merger, the possible end of an era for Half-Life 2
Today's round-up includes more on the game/music video melange, optimistic words from those behind the Sega/Sammy merger, the possible end of an era for Half-Life 2 watchers, and Sega rally-ing around a classic franchise. - MTV2 has announced a full series, starting September 18th, for Video Mods, a TV program which showcases custom music videos using video game characters and environments. Apparently, the first episode will showcase Lil Jon's "Get Low" using VU Games' adaptation of Fight Club, Von Bondies "C'mon C'mon", rather bizarrely using Irrational's Tribes: Vengeance, Evanescence's "Everybody's Fool" using characters and environments from Majesco's BloodRayne 2, and Fountains of Wayne's "Stacey's Mom", courtesy of Will Wright and EA's The Sims 2. Other games to be featured in the rest of the series, which had a limited pilot run earlier this year, include Jade Empire and Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude. - The president of Sega Sammy Holdings, Hajime Satomi, has commented that the soon-to-be-merged company will seek further companies to purchase, as part of its bid to become one of the top five worldwide game publishers. Talking to The Japan Times, Satomi commented that the firm, which will start officially trading on October 1st, will be "targeting game publishers with strong intellectual properties in the U.S. and Europe." The combined company currently employs around 600 videogame-related employees worldwide, and plans to swiftly increase that to around 1,000. - After a number of false alarms, one created by a forum user 'borrowing' Valve boss Gabe Newell's messageboard account on a Half-Life 2 fan site, both Newell and Doug Lombardi have confirmed that the Vivendi Universal Games-published PC FPS, long in development, has finally been submitted to VU Games in 'release candidate' form. However, this simply means that VU's internal testers, who have likely seen and tested earlier versions of the game, need to complete final checks before a gold master is announced and the game finally ships to stores. It is, nonetheless, another step down the road to releasing one of 2004's most anticipated titles. - According to an action-packed pre-Tokyo Game Show issue of Japan's Famitsu Weekly, Sega will be presenting Sega Rally 2005 at next week's TGS. The game, announced for the PlayStation 2, is being produced by Jun Taniguchi, who also produced Sega Rally 2, since original Sega Rally producer Tetsuya Mizuguchi has now left Sega to pursue independent development with his Q Project team. In particular, this new iteration of Sega Rally includes a mode featuring the 'AGC' system, in which the weather, time limit, and even course design will be created randomly every time you race. However, we'll likely hear much more about the game at Tokyo Game Show, starting Friday, September 24th.

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