By Eli Green
April 19, 2007 - 23:59
Here we are once more, and we're glad you could join us. We've got some quick things to go over before we start today's News Pop!. One of those things was the fact that we have not yet mentioned that the full version of the Internet Channel for Wii became available last week. Well it did, and it's free until June 30th, so if you've got a Wii and you haven't upgraded from the trail version or simply downloaded the full version already we suggest you do. After June 30th, the download will cost 500 Wii Points (essentially $5 USD). The other thing is that you may or may not have noticed that we posted Sony's Second Quarter software lineup earlier today. If you've been wondering what's going to be coming out for the Playstation platforms, check it out.
Nintendo will be turning New York City's Rockefeller Center into Pokemon Central this Sunday, April 22nd, for the launch of Pokemon Diamond and Pokemon Pearl. To celebrate the North American release of the games, Nintendo is hosting a party at the Nintendo World store at Rockefeller Center. There will be stations where people can play the new games, a movie lounge showcasing the new DVD release of Pokemon Ranger and Temple of the Sea, stage shows, games, contests and more. For Pokemon fans who can't make it to the party, well Nintendo's got something for you too, a live webcast of the event from 1-5 pm. Just head over to www.pokemon.com to check it out. That's a little too much Pokemon for us to handle.
The team from Insomniac Games, creators of the Ratchet & Clank franchise, will be appearing on this coming week's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The reason? They've created a digital version of a young man named James Westbrook which will actually be a playable character in the upcoming Ratchet & Clank game, Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction. Here's a little bit of a backstor y and the reasons why this episode was on the Westbrooks. “ The Westbrook family has been hard hit by two separate incidents. In April 2004, then-SFC (Sergeant First Class) Gene Westbrook was hit by a mortar at an American camp mess hall in Baghdad, Iraq which left him paralyzed. Then, last July, another tragic accident struck the family. While en route to visit friends in Oklahoma, the family van lost control, touched an oncoming vehicle, and flipped into a ditch. The accident left James paralyzed and caused internal injuries to one of two Westbrook daughters, who later lost a kidney. The day after the accident, Gene Westbrook suffered a stroke, leaving him with further damage to his right arm and some memory loss. Since the accident, Peggy Westbrook has been faced with the daunting task of trying to rehabilitate both her husband and son, a task made even more difficult by a lack of wheelchair accessibility in their home.” That's the reason Extreme Makeover: Home Edition went to help the Westbrooks. As far as the Insomniac Games team's involvement, the design team from the show found out that James' favourite hobbies are centered around video games, including playing and designing them, and somehow the Insomniac Games team found out about him and took on this addition to their project. Now James will appear as a playable character in the game. Sony also provided James with every current Playstation console and a bunch of games, so he'll have quite a bit to be occupied with until the game's release. Honestly, we can't see this as much more than a marketing ploy by Sony, but we still applaud them for it. We certainly hope James continues to enjoy video games for a long, long time. If you want to see the episode, it will air at 8 pm/7 pm Central on ABC.