No direct selling to end-users yet
In an approach that appears to be a stepping stone to further digital selling, Nintendo has announced that it will begin offering digital copies of selected titles for the Wii U and 3DS systems through retail channels. The approach will allow buyers to visit actual game shops or the online sites for those shops and make purchases, and can choose to have either physical copies or digital downloads delivered to their console's SD card through a 16-digit download code.
Comedians seek more freedom
Aziz Ansari has released his latest stand-up special, "Dangerously Delicious," directly to the Internet as a digital download, sidestepping traditional publishing routes in the comedy industry. The Parks and Recreation star is following in Louis C.K.'s footsteps, publishing a video himself rather than relying on traditional broadcasters such as Comedy Central or HBO.
Wisconsin iTunes tax
Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle would like iTunes customers to help pay for the state's budget shortfall, according to the Associated Press. Doyle has proposed a sales tax on a variety of digital downloads including music, movies, ringtones, electronic books and greeting cards. The state is short almost $600 million for the budget ending June 30th, while the next budget faces a deficit of $5.7 billion. Doyle claims the download tax would generate $11 million across the next two years.
Ankh 2, Brain Jogging
Deliver2Mac today announced Ankh 2 and Brain Jogging as digital downloads. Ankh 2: Heart of Osiris puts players once again in the shoes of Assil, who warded off a death curse prior to the sequel, only to lose the Ankh and his girlfriend Thara. In addition, the Pharaoh was overthrown by Osiris and sent to work in his own quarry. Assil must travel through locations both new and familiar to recover all that he's lost. Ankh 2: Heart of Osiris is available for $40.
Hoyle Card Games download
Macgamestore.com today announced the availability of Hoyle Card Games as a digital download, a collection of over 150 games developed by Encore Software. Previously available only as a boxed version, the digital download allows users to create a custom avatar and play against others or the computer in Texas Hold'em, Hearts, Bridge, and Crazy Eights, among others. Hoyle Card Games is currently available for $20, and is 780MB in size.
Rainbow Web 2
Sugar Games today unveiled Rainbow Web 2, the sequel to its color-matching puzzle game. Having freed the lands of the influence of the Sorcerer Spider, players must now rid the Royal Palace of its presence. In order to clear the Spider's webs from the castle, players must match letters and colors over 82 levels to break the Spider's spell. Rainbow Web 2 is available from Macgamestore.com for $20 as a digital download.
Wheel of Fortune Deluxe
Macgamestore.com today unveiled Encore's Wheel of Fortune Deluxe as a digital download, previously only offered in boxed format. As with the game show, users spin the wheel, earning the right to pick consonants or buy vowels, to solve over 2000 word puzzles created by the show's staff. Players can choose from three game modes: Road Trip, Group Pay, and Puzzle of the Day. Wheel of Fortune Deluxe is available from Macgamestore.com for $20, and requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 and a G4, or later.
Virtual Programming has released Domination in digital download format, marking the sequel to its "Massive Assault!" game title. Players enter the universe of Domination to become part of the renewed global conflict between the Free Nations Union and the Phantom League on distant planets. The new game features land, sea, and air strategic warfare in a sci-fi setting. The game is priced at $30, and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later.
Vudu gets Bourne Ultimatum
Hollywood studios are taking a chance on the Vudu set-top box by granting the service the right to distribute the first of many major movies simultaneously with the official DVD release. The Bourne Ultimatum will be available Tuesday for rent or purchase, in standard and high definition. Universal Pictures is one of a few studios that have agreed to sell high definition content through the Vudu box, though there are not many titles currently available, in contrast to the 5000 standard definition titles that Vudu offers. Vudu sells the set-top box for $400, with rentals ranging from $1 to $5.