Activision on Tuesday announced Call of Duty Elite, a new social network-style experience that will allow Call of Duty players to interact with one another in an entirely different way. The social network has three pillars: connect, compete, and improve. “Connect” will allow users to compete against friends, join groups, find players with similar interests, and enter tournaments. Activision will provide both web and mobile interfaces for managing your Call of Duty information from multiple devices. “Compete” will allow players to enter events and competitions with other players that have similar abilities, and Activision promises real world and in-game prizes. “Improve,” will provide users with a strategy guide to help them bump their gaming skills by following their performance and ongoing statistics. “The average Call of Duty player spends 58 minutes per day playing multiplayer,” Activision Publishing CEO, Eric Hirshberg, said. “That is more than the average Facebook user spends per day on Facebook. And yet, right now, there are very few tools to unite and super charge that social community. Whether it’s allowing you to connect with your friends, or people of a similar skill level, people who live in your city, people who share your favorite passions, join competitive clans or social groups, or upload, view and comment on the incredible mass of player-generated content, or watch and comment on exclusive created content, Call of Duty Elite will give people more ways to connect with fellow players than ever before.” Most features will be free, although a premium package will also be available. The service will enter public beta with Call of Duty: Black Ops this summer and will launch on November 8th with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Hit the jump for the full release and a demo video.
Hot on the heels of news that Sony’s PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 3 Slim would soon become available for $299.99, Microsoft has responded with a body blow. Redmond’s popular high-end gaming console is currently available in three different versions: Xbox 360 Arcade for $199.99, Xbox 360 Pro for $299.99 and Xbox 360 Elite for $399.99. While the Arcade will continue to sit at its already-attractive price point, beginning tomorrow Microsoft will drop the price on the Pro from $299.99 to $249.99 and the Elite will drop from $399.99 to $299.99. Ouch, Sony. The Pro will stay at its new $250 price point until current inventory is burned through and it will then get the axe, leaving just the $200 Arcade and $300 Elite to man Microsoft’s fort. The company claims that this move has been planned for months but we find it a bit too convenient considering Sony’s aggressive moves of late. So gamers, which sounds the most attractive at the $300 price point — Sony’s PlayStation 3 80GB, the PS3 Slim or Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Elite?
While the popularity of torrents has shown no signs of dwindling any time soon, the MPAA-fueled case against EliteTorrents just saw its first conviction. Back in 2005, Homeland Security agents served search warrants in various locations around the country as part of “Operation D-Elite” that resulted in 10 arrests. What a fantastic use of the country’s counterterrorism resources. Now more than three years later Clintwood Virginia resident Dale Dove has been convicted of felony copyright infringement and conspiracy, and has become the first man to be convicted as a result of the case. According to prosecutors of the case, Dove was the ringleader in the group of pirated content suppliers that was EliteTorrents. Dove apparently maintained a server of his own and played a part in recruiting others to supply content and servers. While Dove represents the first conviction in this case, he will not be the first to serve time as a result. In 2006, EliteTorrents server administrator Scott McCausland pleaded guilty to two copyright-related charges tied to the distribution of Star Wars: Episode III and served five months in jail plus an addition five months of house arrest (during which has wasn’t allowed to use Linux). Dove’s sentencing will take place in September; good luck buddy.