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Yes, Epic Games’ Unreal Engine 4 can be used to create large, dramatic demon gods, but that doesn’t mean it’s only used to create large, dramatic demon gods. It’s also used to create sneaky thief demos! Oh, and as Mozilla demonstrates this morning with video of Unreal Engine 4 running from within Firefox, the engine can be used for much smaller-scale applications as well (such as the basic 2D platforming game seen in the video below the break). All this is to demonstrate that developers can use web clients (Firefox at least) to create games that are “almost indistinguishable from ones [you] might have had to wait to download and install” — the demo is running without plugins at “near-native” speeds. Apparently Unreal Engine 3 support simply wasn’t enough? We’ll be sure to ask when Mozilla shows off UE4 in Firefox next week at the Game Developers Conference.
UK Netflix subscribers looking to get their fix of US TV will soon have two new popular series available to add to their binge-watching schedule. Expanding its partnership with Twentieth Century Fox, the streaming giant announced today it will exclusively add the first two seasons of Golden Globe winning drama Homeland and paranormal series American Horror Story from March 13th. It’s another big coup for Netflix as it attempts to supplement its ever-increasing line-up of originals, which includes House of Cards, with earlier seasons of shows still pulling in strong TV audiences. Sure, it’d be ideal if the episodes appeared as they aired, but we’re secretly hoping for a spin-off starring Saul from Breaking Bad and Saul from Homeland… maybe they could call it “Better Call Sauls.”
Source: Netflix (PRNewsWire)
Toshiba’s already spilled the beans on its 4K TV line-up for this year, and right on cue, it’s just revealed the new range of 2014 LED sets that might interest us folk still clinging on to the regular HD era. The entry-level 3 series gains a number of new recruits, all with some smart TV features, baked-in WiFi and Freeview HD, in the UK at least. The L3 range is full HD, with 40- and 48-inch options, while the lone W3 model is a 32-inch, 1,366 x 768 affair. With the same resolution and screen sizes from 24 to 40 inches, the D3 series also have DVD players on board, and all of the above are slated for launch in the US and UK later this month.
We’re still not sure whether Amazon’s truly launching a music streaming service, but if it does, you might only be able to access songs and albums for a limited time. According to the Wall Street Journal, the e-commerce company hopes to offer music streaming as part of Prime to justify an annual membership (from $79 to $119) price increase. Unlike other services like Spotify or Pandora, Amazon’s end goal is to entice people to download tracks from its MP3 store, hence, the time limit. Meanwhile, Billboard reports on rumors compiled from sources at multiple labels, where Amazon’s apparently going after older titles, and proposing smaller, capped payments based on the number of plays. The service’s existence depends on whether Amazon and recording companies can agree on licensing fees, though — it’s reportedly far from being a done deal.
Green Throttle Games was late to the Android gaming platform party, and paid the price for it — the company effectively wound down at the end of 2013. However, its efforts may not have been in vain. Google has confirmed to PandoDaily that it has acquired key portions of Green Throttle’s business, including its parts, labor and two co-founders. The crew in Mountain View hasn’t said what it will do with its new resources, but PandoDaily sources claim that Google wants to refine the Bluetooth controller for its long-fabled (and possibly gaming-focused) TV set-top box. Whether or not that’s true, the move suggests that Google’s interest in games is extending beyond software.
Just as the Xbox One’s biggest game release arrives, network problems are keeping many owners from signing in. The Xbox Support Twitter account reported an issue around 5PM ET, and according to the service’s dashboard it’s still ongoing. While many players who already setup their consoles and logged in to the game (including some of our editors) are able to connect and play Titanfall — the game’s cloud seems to be holding up, even if Xbox Live isn’t in general — others are unable to sign in, particularly brand-new Xbox One purchasers who can’t get much of anything going. The support team’s message has been promising updates every 30 minutes or so, but so far there’s no ETA on a fix. Steam appears to have just come back online after downtime of its own — perhaps we could suggest some Dark Souls II on PC in the meantime?
Update: As of 10:47PM ET the Xbox Status page and Support Twitter report the problem is resolved. The team recommends a full power cycle (hold down the Xbox button on the system itself for five seconds to turn it all the way off, then turn it back on), and then you should be ready to request your Titan, pilot.
It’s Tuesday, which means it’s time for the Engadget HD Podcast and we hope you’ll join us for the live recording at 9:15PM. Aereo is in the news again, so we’ll lead off with that news tonight, as well as the next chapter in Dish’s spectrum grab, Chromecast developments, and more speculation about DirecTV and Verizon. There’s always plenty of streaming news too and a few other home theater related items. If you’ll be joining us, take a peek at the topics after the break and then get ready to participate in the live chat.
Filed under: HD
Another day, another upstart streaming video service. The latest contender to enter the fray is Tapp, the subscription-based brainchild of former CNN president Jon Klein and former NBC Universal Television chairman Jeff Gaspin. So what’s got a bunch of big name investors (including Google’s Eric Schmidt) so worked up? Well, Tapp (which is short for the profoundly uncatchy “TV App”) is centered around a series of video channels for your smartphones and smart TVs that are tailored to specific niches like sports, politics, science and fitness. Unlike Hulu or Netflix though, you’ll pay $10 a month for each of the channels you actually want. That may sound a little steep, but these guys are banking on the star power of their hosts to make those channels worth paying for. For now the list of personalities is a mystery, though the New York Post reports that Sarah Palin may be one of the first — we’ll find out for sure when Tapp goes live in a few weeks.
Filed under: HD
Via: The Wrap
As forewarned, Oculus VR is officially ending sales of its first-run development kit. “We’re quickly running out of stock for the Rift development kit, so we’ve shut down sales in most regions,” a note from Oculus says. Specifically, the issue comes from certain pieces of the headset “no longer being manufactured.” That said, those headsets are more than a little long in the tooth at this point: both the HD version and the Crystal Cove prototype take giant leaps past the first dev unit, to say nothing of Valve’s prototype. Oculus isn’t offering anything official in terms of word on new dev kits (beyond what the company’s CTO told us last year), but we expect many devs already have some form of new hardware from the fast-growing VR company.
It’s that time of year again, when you have to try and wrestle back as many of those hard-earned dollars as you can from the insatiable gaping maw of the tax beast. In an effort to assuage that annual suffering, the folks at TurboTax created the free SnapTax app for 1040EZ/A returns and this year they’ve upped the ante for one lucky Engadget reader by offering an unlocked gold iPhone 5s so they can file on the go. Available for iOS and Android, the SnapTax app lets users file by simply snapping a photo of their W-2, answering a few questions and clicking “file my return.” This is one little slab of gold that you won’t want to stash in a safety deposit box, so head on down to the Rafflecopter widget for up to three chances at winning. And don’t forget: It’s time to do those taxes!