Assassin's Creed has become one of the biggest video game franchises around, and lately have been releasing games to considerably mixed feelings. In a recent blog post, Ubisoft talks their position on the series moving forward.
This year, we also are stepping back and re-examining the Assassin’s Creed franchise. As a result, we’ve decided that there will not be a new Assassin’s Creed game in 2016. Since the release of Assassin’s Creed Unity, we’ve learned a lot based on your feedback. We’ve also updated our development processes and recommitted to making Assassin’s Creed a premier open-world franchise. We’re taking this year to evolve the game mechanics and to make sure we’re delivering on the promise of Assassin’s Creed offering unique and memorable gameplay experiences that make history everyone’s playground.
This will probably come as a relief to longtime fans of the series; it's particularly good to hear Ubisoft acknowledge what a disaster Assassin's Creed Unity was. Hopefully this will mark a shift in Assassin's Creed back to the quality of the best games in the series.
And it better be set in Feudal Japan, for goodness sake.
April 26, 2016 has been announced as the day that Dungeons 2 will be released for the PlayStation 4! The PlayStation 4 edition of the game includes an impressive collection of on-disc content including the "Morningwood", "Pixieville", "A Song of Sand and Fire", "A Clash of Pumpkins", and "A Chance of Dragons" add-on packs which will add more missions, fights, and enemies.
Check out the PlayStation 4 trailer below:
With Valentine's Day this Sunday, Guitar Hero Live will be featuring love ballads from across the decades so get ready to woo your significant other to all things rock! To make sure you still have money for flowers and chocolate, there will be a Hero Cash sale in GHTV starting today through Monday, February 15th. The sale includes 50% off Play Token Bundles, as well as 50% off the Hero Cash skip requirement for the Valentine's Day Premium Show entry.
The new songs available are:
The day after Valentine's Day is the 58th Annual Grammy Awards. Players can check out three new GHTV songs from artists who have been nominated for a Grammy. The nominated artists are:
The Citadel expansion changes a lot to the EVE Online universe this spring. It's scary. Happening now as something of a precursor to the Spring 2016 expansion, however, is Skill Trading. Using Skill Extractors and Skill Injectors, characters with over 5 million skill points can trade or sell skillpoints like any other commodity in the game. In EVE Online, skillpoints aren't acquired through grinding; they're acquired over time, in real-time, by getting skill training books and queing them up for learning.
So, the ability to remove 500,000 skillpoints at a time and trade them is an intriguing premise. Trading the skillpoints to newer characters gets more bonuses. Trading the skillpoints to more experienced characters makes the points worth less. If you have between 5 million and 50 million total skillpoints, for example, then a 500,000 point Skill Injector will only net you 400,000 skillpoints, and so on. It's a way of boosting noobs while maintaining the prestige that comes with older, more experienced characters.
CCP packaged several more updates in, too, like combat music for engagements and new camera options.
This video is informative, but goes pretty deep in the weeds for casual observers. Read the developer blog for even more details. Developer CCP is making major moves to ensure EVE never dies in it's EVE Forever initiative.
EVE Online is only a few months away from its 13th anniversary. It's somehow managed to survive the decline of MMOs, mainly because it's not like any other MMO out there. It marches to its own beat, and continually improves and refines its universe.
Developer Wargaming.net isn't taking a smoke break when it comes to World of Tanks. This video is a look at what's in the near future for the free-to-play tank 'em up on PC. And, naturally, improvements that come to the PC version will follow on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 editions.
First, improved physics. These tanks are whipping 180-degree turns and rolling head-over-heels around too-fast corners. They're also kicking up a lot more dirt under their tracks. More tank models are remodeled in HD, too.
Second, dynamic sound. You've gotta know what you're listening for, but you'll be able to tell what hit you—or bounced off—by the sound the shell makes. You'll have an idea of what caliber of gun and what type of shells it's using. And just the general sound of firing your gun packs more of a wallop.
Third, a new map and a map change are in order. Ravaged Capital runs you through the streets of Paris, the Eiffel Tower rising above the battlefield. The other, Sacred Valley, underwent significant changes to the central and perimeter locations. Aside from the beautifully Japanese aesthetic it holds onto, you might as well be learning an entirely new map.
Download the World of Tanks test client (on PC) to try out the new features and leave feedback for the developers. I can't wait for these features to roll onto the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
After seven or so years in development, The Witness is finally out in the wild. Apparently, developer Jonathan Blow (Braid) has done it again. Review aggregator OpenCritic has it sitting pretty at an 88 out of 100. The Witness is a modern-day Myst; a silent island filled with puzzles and puzzling sculptures.
In his Other Places video series, YouTuber Ultrabrilliant takes his patient, thoughtful camera lens across the island. I haven't been turned on by polygonal art styles as of late, but The Witness does it very, very right. The place is gorgeous. All the more stunning that each of these environments is situated on a relatively small island. The dunes, the waterfalls, the coast, the castle, the cherry blossoms, the forests—everything is within walking distance of each other.
The Witness is out now as of January 26 on PC and PlayStation 4. TBA on iOS.
I gotta admit, Conan was the last name I would've thought of when it comes to open-world survival. Survival games have largely been built by indie outfits; not venerable companies like Funcom. Well, yes, Funcom is technically an independent developer and publisher, but they've been doing this since the early '90s. Funcom is inspired by the recent successes of this new genre, however, and it's moving in.
Conan Exiles takes the craftsmanship of a Minecraft and the starts-with-nothing gameplay of a Rust and puts them together in a desert. At least at first. As the map expands, Funcom says additional rugged locations are coming: mountains, snow, ice, swamps, and rivers.
But it's possible that nothing is permanent. Conan Exiles introduces "the purge," a special event where NPC armies from neighboring kingdoms come in and wreck shop. Your settlements, strongholds, crops—it could all be gone. Or you could band together with other players to fight the purge. It'll be interesting to see how that works in the single-player mode, too. Are you doomed in the single-player campaign, or can you ally with local NPCs? Does the purge only affect online multiplayer? I'm waiting for answers. Either way, Conan Exiles has my attention. I'm walking over to my bookshelf and dusting off the Robert E. Howard right now.
This video looks behind the scenes at the game's development. Some of it is pretty raw. But Funcom must have made excellent progress over the past couple years (I'm guessing) if it's ready for its close-up in a few months. Oh, and Conan apparently rescues you from crucifixion in the game's opening moments. Yeah buddy.
Conan Exiles goes into Early Access this summer on PC.
This week's Nintendo Download is going to make the world a little odd. Specifically I'm talking about Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee - New 'n' Tasty hitting the Wii U. While it's been out on most other systems since last year, it just hit the PS Vita last month and the Wii U today. New 'n' Tasty brings the original Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee to the Wii U with next-gen visuals, new audio and music, and reworked game play. If you're a fan of the series and own a Wii U, this is one to add to your digital collection.
Over on the Wii U's Virtual Console we have Big Brain Academy for the Nintendo DS, bringing the original game in the series to the Wii U. This version can test your mental acuity with a five category quiz that includes thinking, memorization, computation, analysis, and identification. I have a feeling that I'd do pretty well outside of memorization as my short term memory isn't quite what it used to be, though video games do seem to be the exception to that.
The Wii U also got two Game Boy Advance games today in Polarium Advance as well as Kuru Kuru Kururin. Polarium Advance challenges players to create horizontal rows of the same color to clear the board. While I've never played this version, I do own the DS version and really enjoyed it, so I can only imagine that the GBA version would be at least just as much fun. As for Kuru Kuru Kururin, you control Kururin through multiple mazes across ten different worlds in order to rescue your lost brothers and sisters. This is one of the oldest Game Boy Advance games, releasing in Japan in March of 2001 and a few months later in PAL territories as a launch title. However, this is the first time that it's been released in North America.
Bandai Namco has recently released some new images that introduce several new playable characters for their upcoming game One Piece: Burning Blood. These new playable characters include:
Bandai Namco has also revealed some information about the game's story mode titled Paramount War Mode. This will be a solo story mode that will enable players to experience the Marineford Arc of the One Piece story from a new perspective. Players will be able to select from four separate campaign episodes that will feature Monkey D. Luffy, Whitebeard, Portgas D. Ace, and Akainu, and each will have their own series of battles and cut scenes.
It has been a rough year for Bungie. The company hasn't been able to build much momentum after releasing the excellent Taken King expansion pack for Destiny last year and they recently parted ways with their long time president.
In a blog post today the company stated that they will be releasing a large content patch this spring which will increase the max light level of the game and add a bunch of new gear and PVE content.
They also announced that a full sequel will be released in 2017 which confirms the report from Kotaku last month. There's not a lot of detail to go on but this is good news for Destiny players as the company is finally starting to lay out some kind of roadmap for the game.