NewsSpots: Sony, Fallout 3, Simpsons, GRAW2, Combat Mission

Sony hints at E3 content; sci-fi RPG gets pics and theme pack; Groening to cameo in cartoon game; PC shooter demo'd, golden; Paradox wargame preorder details.

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PlayStation Store gearing up for E3
Earlier this week, Microsoft announced its Bringing It Home campaign to deliver E3 Media and Business Summit content to Xbox Live users. And while Sony won't actually be able to bring it to Home until October, the PlayStation 3 maker did tip its hand on a presumably similar effort today. A new banner has been added to Sony's PlayStation Store that reads, "E3: Get Ready for Something New, Santa Monica July 11-13." No content has yet been posted to the space, nor has Sony revealed what it has in store.

Xbox Live feeling Fallout
The mere mention that Bethesda is working on the next installment in Interplay's sci-fi role-playing Fallout series was enough to set most interested gamers aquiver with excitement. But Bethesda is apparently looking to build that hype to a fever pitch before Fallout 3's Q4 2008 release. In addition to last month's teaser trailer, Bethesda has added a Fallout 3 theme and picture pack to Xbox Live this week. The theme pack displays the various bits of concept art, including the wasted Washington, DC scene first revealed in May, and runs for 150 Microsoft points ($1.88). Featured in the picture pack are iconic Fallout 3 images of Vault Boy and the Brotherhood of Steel, and it runs for 100 Microsoft points ($1.25).

Simpsons creator makes cameo
It may have taken nearly 20 seasons and more than 400 episodes, but it appears Homer will finally get a chance to meet his maker. Describing the next installment in the long-running Simpsons line of games to Eurogamer, series creator Matt Groening revealed not only that he would be in the game, but also that he serves as a primary antagonist for his creations to defeat. "It's a videogame about videogames; and I'm in the videogame," he said. "I'm a boss that you have to fight at the end of the game. It was really fun recording a million ways of dying, going 'UGGH, ARGGH, EUURGH!'"

GRAW2 gets single-player sampler, goes gold
Last month, Ubisoft gave PC gamers a glimpse of the squad-based action in Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 with a multiplayer demo. Today, the publisher sends word that a single-player demo is now ready for the tactical shooter. In the demo, players will reacquaint themselves with Captain Mitchell in the first level of the game. Ubisoft also revealed that the PC version has gone gold and will ship to store shelves July 17. A highly acclaimed Xbox 360 version of the game was released earlier this year.

Bonus kit for Shock Force revealed
Battlefront.com today announced a preorder package for the next installment in its critically lauded wargame series Combat Mission. Those who order the game in advance will receive $10 off its retail price, as well as a 200-page manual, a mouse pad, and a 14x14-inch map of Syria as portrayed in the alternate-reality simulation. In Shock Force, players will lead a US task force into Syria to restore order after a military coup ousted the country's leadership. Combat Mission: Shock Force is rated T for Teen and is slated to deploy July 27.

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