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Kôna: Day One Available on GOG

by: Michelle - - 0 Comments

The first act of Parabole's interactive story titled Kôna: Day One is now available on GOG's new Games in Development program. Kôna is set in northern Canada during the 1970s. Players follow the story of private detective Carl Faubert as he investigates an unusual case in an eerie town in the middle of a blizzard.

Visit www.gog.com/game/kona_day_one to purchase Kôna: Day One for 33% off the normal price and be sure to check out the Kôna: Day One trailer below!

Kanye West making video game, bummed you aren't applauding enough

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

Call me crazy, but Kanye West might be onto something with this new video game concept of his. Of course I mean that Kanye West: the rapper, songwriter, record producer, fashion designer, and entrepreneur. Someone may very well have to update his Wikipedia page to include video game designer, at this point.

One hour into his Yeezy Season 3 fashion show, Kanye showed the crowd a clip of Only One: The Game. "Only One," incidentally, is the name of a song he wrote about his mother, the late Donda West. Kanye tells the crowd: "I worked on a video game and I wanted to show you all. The idea of the game is my Mom traveling through the gates of Heaven."

I'll tell you one thing about the trailer: he found a good artist. It actually looks like the imagery is inspired by the Columbia Pictures logo—you know, the one with the lady in a toga holding a torch in front of some magnificent clouds? The game looks kinda like that.

Kanye wasn't impressed with the mediocre applause for his game. He goes on to say, "Oh. Thanks. That's not easy to do, man. You all be acting like s*** is regular, man. No, you don't understand. I go out and meet with everybody in San Fran, and they diss the f*** out of me. And I'll be like, 'I want to make a game.' And they'll be like, 'F*** you.' That was hard to do, bro." So Kanye cues up the trailer again, and is more satisfied with the second round of applause. "If you're going to be an artist," he says, "you've just got to do what's in your heart. Fight for every dream that you may dream, whatever discipline it may be. No one can tell you what field to stay in."

It'd be interesting to know which San Francisco game studios he spoke with. Telltale Games? Ubisoft's Just Dance branch? Did he talk to operations at Sony Computer Entertainment? Maybe he talked to Glu Mobile, the people that made his wife's Kim Kardashian: Hollywood game, and maybe Glu was like nahhh. Who knows.

I don't think Kanye has the next monster franchise on his hands, but he obviously takes his work seriously. So, if he's got a solid direction for the game, it'd be nice to see Only One get made. 

         

What We're Playing This Weekend: Lovers in a Dangerous Firewatch Edition

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

Sailor Mercury talks about Coding Like a Girl, and what that means for women in programming/gaming/game development. Actor Michael Fassbender says the Assassin's Creed movie will be more like The Matrix than anything else. And this video explains a well-loved story template—seen in all media, video games included—known as the hero's journey.

What are you playing this weekend?

Sean Colleli, Staff Writer, @scolleli
I might check out Firewatch. I'm particularly cautious about walking simulators, as they're typically less of a game and more of a way for a developer to push their heavyhanded political perspectives on you. That said, Firewatch is being made by some of the guys who worked on Telltale's The Walking Dead, so hopefully it will have some interactivity. Although I'm willing to bet either way that my choices in the game won't matter in the end.

Chapel Collins, Staff Writer, @ChapelCollins
I finally finished Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, and I'm trying to find something to fill that hole in my life. I won't have much time for gaming this weekend, but when I do, I'll probably try to play Metal Gear Solid 3. After The Phantom Pain, I'm desperate to get more time with Big Boss.

Jeremy Duff, Senior Staff Writer, @Duff3c
Let's see, what I plan to play and what I'll end up playing are likely two drastically different things. My gaming menu has a pair of titles on it for this coming weekend. I would really like to wrap up Arslan: The Warriors of Legend on PS4, as I poured a ton of time into it over the last week-and-a-half. I really want to see it through to the end. It's a Dynasty Warriors-styled game, which is both good and bad. It looks great and is a ton of fun to play (not to mention has a great story), but it still suffers from the same issues the Musou franchise has in past years, with horrible character and texture pop-in and strange camera issues. After clearing the battlefields in the name of Prince Arslan, I am likely going to roam the forests of Wyoming with Firewatch, which looks incredibly interesting to me. I don't normally get into these types of games, but this one really has my interest and I am just going to bite the bullet and pick it up this weekend.

Charles Husemann, Editor-in-Chief, @chusemann
This weekend will be spent playing through Layers of Fear, the upcoming horror game from Bloober Team. I'll have a full review up next week, but so far I'm pretty impressed with what they've been able to do with the Unity engine. I'll also play a bunch of MechWarrior Online as I try to level up a new set of medium mechs.

Randy Kalista, Staff Writer, @randykalista
I wrapped my Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime review. If you picture My Little Ponies prancing in a bouncy house and manually flying an FTL ship through the movie Inner Space, then you have an idea of how my week's gone. If I can maneuver around the At-Home CFO, I'll patrol the Yellowstone fires of 1988 in Firewatch. I hear the opener is ... a lot to take in. If all else fails, I've thrown Commander Shephard back into heavy rotation. I can appreciate the criticism that FemShep's voice acting is better than BroShep's. But there's still only so much you can emote with stiff lines like: "Tell me more about that," and, "Tell me more about the history and the culture of the Elcor." The sloth-y speech and mannerisms of the Elcor are rad, don't get me wrong. But what I'm trying to say, I think, is that voice actor Mark Meer (BroShep) did fine, okay? He did fine. Jennifer Hale? She's great. But Mark Meer did okay, too.

Rob Larkin, Staff Writer, @Rob_GN
No gaming for me this weekend. Off to Portugal for a four-day weekend. It's a piri-piri pilgrimage.

Matt Mirkovich, Staff Writer, @Stillmywords
I'm checking out the new Fire Emblem game for 3DS, along with Namco's new Digimon game, and the latest Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm—now with 10,000% more Naruto in the roster! Good thing I have a three-day weekend coming up. Plus, being sick will keep me bedridden and interested in these games. Hopefully I can sneak in some time with Gravity Rush Remastered. I'm falling in love with that game all over again.

There will be no Assassin's Creed release in 2016 as Ubisoft "reexamines franchise"

by: Chapel - - 0 Comments

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.

Dungeons 2 PS4 Launch Date Announced

by: Michelle - - 0 Comments

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:

Celebrate Valentine's Day & The Grammys on Guitar Hero Live

by: Michelle - - 0 Comments

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:

  • Chris Cornell - Arms Around Your Love
  • Hoobastank - The Reason
  • Goo Goo Dolls - Iris
  • Bon Jovi - You Give Love a Bad Name
  • Motorhead - Heartbreaker
  • The Darkness - I Believe in a Thing Called Love

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:

  • Courtney Barnett - Nobody Really Cares If You Don't Go to the Party
  • Highly Suspect - Lydia
  • Elle King - Ex's & Oh's 

 

Suck skillpoints out of your head, sell them on the open market in EVE Online

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

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.

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New World of Tanks physics have you whip, nae nae

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

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. 

A zen-like visit to the island of The Witness

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

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.

Conan chops you down from a crucifix in Conan Exiles

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

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.

  
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