So I was winding down a very busy day today of numerous errands that in the end took me to the Costco in Croydon, south of London. Over my shoulder I noticed a stack of Rock Band 4 Band-In-a-Box bundles for sale for I think £149.99, might have been £139.99. I thought to myself, "Huh, I didn't realize Rock Band 4 had even been released yet." It's been a pretty busy week for me so it's not unheard of that I would have missed it. But it kinda gnawed at me and when I got home I checked the release date and lo and behold, it doesn't come out until Tuesday, October 6th. I really regret not snapping a photo at the time but there you have it. Want Rock Band 4 a few days early? Have a Costco membership? Head over to Croydon and treat yo'self.
I am sure this is an honest mistake by the fine staff there at Costco and it may very well be corrected before Tuesday, but I can deliver a first hand account that Rock Band is on sale right now at the Croydon Costco.
[I'm learning to play the guitar by committing to 30 Days of Rocksmith. Here's how I got started.]
In all my years as a saxophonist, I held onto 1st chair. “1st chair” is the order you sit in band. Your top player is 1st chair, then the next is 2nd chair, then 3rd chair, and so on, until you get down to (typically) the least-skilled player in the row, however many chairs down that may be. If your band has an outrageous number of saxophones, you could be 12th or 20th chair, who knows?
Yes, I was the most technically skilled sax player in North Bend High School in North Bend, Oregon, from 1992 to 1996. You’ve probably never heard of my town or my high school. That’s not the point. But I say “technically skilled” because, at heart, I wasn’t much of a musician.
There were always better players than me. I can admit that, this many years down the road. But no one could really out practice me. I lived with my instrument. I took it home every night, carrying that heavy, black case over the two-mile country road I lived down. And, since I went to all the trouble of lugging that thing around, I figured I’d better put an hour or two into it. I brought it back to school every day and put another hour into it during band. So, I held onto 1st chair, if for no other reason than because I just played the dang thing a bunch.
Microsoft's PC and Xbox One game-creation tool, Project Spark, is free for the taking, starting October 5. Google offers its Cardboard-powered VR field trips to schools for free. But, if you get motion sickness while using VR, don't blame the hardware, blame the software developers.
What are you playing this weekend?
Nathan Carter, Staff Writer, @natedoggcata
I have been sick with the flu for the last couple of days. I will probably spend most of this weekend in bed with my PS Vita and my new addictions. First, I have discovered the greatness that is Persona 4 on the Vita. Only took me about 10 minutes to get hooked. I was never a fan of turned based RPGs, but the whole living-out-a-year-of-school thing is incredibly fun and I love hanging out with these characters. Second, Danganronpa. I already finished the main story of the original and Danganronpa 2. I finished both in less than a week because I was so hooked. But now I need to finish up these report cards so I can finish school mode. Hopefully, I won't be friendzoned by Junko this time around.
Sean Colleli, Staff Writer, @scolleli
I'm replaying Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood this weekend. I'll also dedicate some time to the original System Shock, which just rereleased on GOG. Still incredibly clunky, still way ahead of its time.
Chapel Collins, Staff Writer, @ChapelCollins
When Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition was free with Games with Gold, I downloaded it immediately, because I knew at some point I would want to play that game again. Over last weekend, I had a bit of time to kill, so I decided to boot it up and check out the shiny new coat of paint on one of my favorite games of 2013. Before I knew it, I was several hours into it, enjoying it just as much if not more than I had the last time. I've decided that this time, I'm going to try and 100% it—aside from maybe the multiplayer achievements, gross.
Jeremy Duff, Senior Staff Writer, @Duff3c
Most of my time, lately—and likely this weekend—has me exploring the universe with a team of Guardians in Destiny. Between the major update and all of The Taken King content, I have been absolutely addicted to the game. This is the game that everyone wanted when Destiny launched. Aside from that, I am also taking a tip from Randy and testing the waters of Rocksmith. I ordered the game, which should be here for the weekend, and picked up a used guitar this week to see if I can actually make something melodic come out of the speakers.
Randy Kalista, Staff Writer, firstname.lastname@example.org
If your name is World of Warships, and you put a "play for free" button on your website, then I'm going to click on that play-for-free button. I'm old Navy. But my laptop was already mature when Windows 7 was an amateur, so wish me luck. Also, I'm finally making the leap into Destiny. I've got the vanilla campaign and three trigger-happy Guardians carrying over their time spent in the demo. I've got daily Rocksmith commitments to attend to. And The Talos Principle—a game I have for review on PS4—is dropping a Biblical ton of question marks into many things I've accepted as "existence" up to this point.
Rob Larkin, Staff Writer, @Rob_GN
I'm actually having a bit of trouble getting my career mode going in FIFA 16. I always start out as manager of UC Dublin, but they done got relegated last year and are no longer in the game. Now, I'm actually at a loss as to which team to take the helm of. Whether I sort that out or not, I'm at the very end of Metro: Last Light (or at least I think I am; the campaign feels like it's wrapping up), so I should be finishing that this weekend for sure.
Matt Mirkovich, Staff Writer, @Stillmywords
I thought I had finished Metal Gear Solid V, after sinking more than 70 hours into it. Turns out that was just chapter one. I've also got a review due for Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax, which mish-mashes some of my favorite anime characters into one fighting game. And then there is the ever-present grind of Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward. The 3.1 patch is just a few weeks away. Need to make sure my iLevel is up to snuff.
Developer Bohemia Interactive has announced that Take On Mars has received a host of new features with the recently-released Power Update. Focused around power simulation and the addition of electricity, the latest update allows players, excuse me, Martians to utilize solar arrays to generate power from the sun as well as construct an electrical grid to power their various structures and machinery.
In addition, a cable spool has been added to the game which can supply power to machinery such as the drilling rig. The spool can hold up to 50m worth of cables, which is all physically animated in-game. The game's latest trailer demonstrates the cables in use and also includes some footage of the gameplay experience while in orbit.
Take On Mars is available now on Steam.
We've finally received our first gameplay footage from the new Master of Orion game and it's about what you would expect. Buried within an exceedingly stilted Galactic News Network (GNN) presentation is a few bits of the new exploration and combat screens as well as an introduction to two of the new races from the game.
It's interesting that players will manually drag and drop resources between each of the different planetary activities like manufacturing, food, and research rather than a simple up/down toggle. It also looks like your facilities actually show up on the planet screen which is something I don't think we've seen in a 4X game before.
Frictional Games, the makers of the Amnesia series of games, released their latest survival horror adventure, SOMA, about two weeks ago to rave reviews. We called it class leading here on GN. The first week launch numbers for the game have been fantastic: 92,000 sold (compared to 30,000 for Amnesia: Dark Descent in the entire first month). To celebrate, a new trailer has been released. Enjoy it below.
SOMA is $29.99 and available on PS4 via the PlayStation Store, and for PC (Windows/Mac/Linux) via Steam, GOG.com, and the Humble Store.
It's one of the most exciting weeks for a SMITE player and if you play any MOBA you know that new character releases are always fun. Well, fun when you get hyped up for a new character, and then all the fun goes out the window when everyone instalocks said character and ruins games. Khepri jungle? Is this real life?
Anyways, SMITE is getting a new Goddess in the next patch and it will be Sol, the Norse Goddess of the Sun. Sol will fill the role of a mage and in my opinion, kinda looks like her kit will be a combination of Freya and Agni. She is a mage that deals high auto attack damage which means that she could fill the ADC role in the duo lane, but she also seems like she will be a beat in the mid lane.
Her first ability heals her, ignites the ground, and deals damage to any enemies that step into the fire
Her second ability is a upgrade to her basic attack and creates a shockwave that travels out and deals damage to nearby enemies.
Her third ability allows her to create a trail of fire behind her that deals damage to enemies. At the end of 3 seconds the trail explodes and stuns enemies.
Finally, her ultimate, which is like Agni and Hou Yi's ultimates combined allows her to paint an area of the map, after a short time 8 beams of flame fall from the sky on the target location where she painted.
Be sure to check out Hi-Rez's Dev Insight on Sol for the full rundown of her abilities, her lore and some great Q&A from the dev team.
Also introduced in the new patch is a really cool Halloween update where the Arena map has gotten a spooky overhaul including decorations, new music, zombie minions, and anyone that dies on the map will leave behind a tombstone.
The Halloween chest will also be making a return and will feature some of the legacy content including past Halloween themed skins plus the exclusive new "Mariachi" Loki skin.
For the full list of patch notes including the full list of nerfs and buffs (Awilix is #1 Waifu) be sure to check out SMITE's official website.
[I'm learning to play the guitar by committing to 30 Days of Rocksmith. Here's how I got started.]
This turned into an unplanned cheat day. A “cheat day,” for those of you so skinny that you never have to diet, is a day in which you indulge in the foods and drinks that you normally avoid for dietary reasons. When the In-N-Out Burger opened in my town a couple weeks ago, my cheat day turned into a cheat week. It’s not recommended. But, in a Rocksmith context, for one day, today was my cheat day. I didn’t pick up the guitar. Didn’t even hover over the Rocksmith icon on my PlayStation.
Taking a day off can be a good thing. I know that it sounds like a copout to title something 30 Days of Rocksmith when, in fact, it’s now only 29 Days of Rocksmith. But I still feel like I’m well on my way toward forming excellent musicianship habits. And, I’ll admit, I didn’t want to hear Mr. Nice Guy’s voice on the tutorials. Not for a good 24 hours.
But my neural pathways are still firing messages from one musical art of my brain to another. Or something like that. Can you tell I’m not a neuropsychologist? I don’t even have the vocabulary to hold an intelligent conversation when it comes to how the brain works. So I’m just hopeful that it’s working, even when my fingers aren’t actively pressing down on the strings. Even when I’m not feeling the buzz from sliding my fingers up and down the scale.
My brain is still thinking about Rocksmith. It’s still subconsciously running up and down those slides (that I’m still trying to nail down when it comes to the upper and lower stopping points). In my head, I’m still pulling off those perfect hammer-ons that my extra-medium-length fingers struggle to reach.
Visualizing success is an important ingredient to this process. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself. But when I had the guitar in my hands, I couldn’t take the time to visualize anything. Because I was doing, of course. But with the guitar sat in the corner for just one night, my imagination and my mind is allowed to play on just a bit.
And I was allowed to put my PlayStation time into Destiny. A game I've finally bought into, now that it's Year Two. Where, just today, I went to the moon, met some interesting creatures, and shot them repeatedly.
Tomorrow, I’ll be back on the wagon. The rock wagon. With the mental rest that comes with a cheat day, I should be ready to tear that thing from its resting place and rip into a murderous set of chords, picking, and sustains.
As October begins, Capcom is choosing to reveal yet another character for the Street Fighter 5 roster. This time, we see series staple Zangief step into the fold. Judging from the gameplay trailer shown below, long-time fans of the Russian wrestler will feel right at home with his new incarnation. Zangief appears to be retaining a variety of his classic moves and fighting style. That doesn’t mean that he isn’t getting some new tricks though; his new V-Skill, dubbed Iron Muscle, allows him to absorb an attack from the opponent. His V-Trigger attack, the Cyclone Lariat, is an extremely fast lariat punch that creates a vacuum like pull that drags the opponent into its fray.
With this reveal, there are only three more characters left to be revealed for the game. The game will have a total of 16 characters at launch, with four of them being completely new. Currently, the roster consists of the following:
This means that two of the remaining three characters will be completely new, plus one veteran will be joining the fray. Who do you think will take the remaining returning spot?