Ubisoft seems to be very busy lately expanding all of its franchises into giant multimedia properties. Following last year's announcement of an expanded Assassin's Creed universe (a Netflix show, more books, etc), Ubi today announced that the Tom Clancy's The Division universe is about to experience a metaphorical big bang, quickly expanding into a few very interesting areas.
The biggest part of this initiative seems to be the announcement of Tom Clancy's The Division Heartland, a new free-to-play game being developed for PC, console, and cloud platforms "in 2021-2022" (I'm guessing Ubisoft wanted to build in a little wiggle room on the release date). Division battle royale, anyone? Maybe?
Also announced were an eventual mobile title, a Netflix film with Jessica Chastain and Jake Gyllenhaal (Ubisoft and Netflix pulling out the big guns!), and new content for The Division 2, which will include "an entirely new game mode and new methods for levelling up agents with an emphasis on increasing build variety and viability".
Gaming Nexus will bring more details on this initiative as they develop. In the meantime, here's a delightful chart with many, many "The Division" logos:
There have been a lot of memorable game trailers over the years. Dead Island's backward-running burning guy comes to mind. And that festival of death Naughty Dog released a few years before Last of Us 2 came out. But I'm not sure any game trailer made me laugh as hard as this one for Super Animal Royale, a new battle royale game from Modus Games and developer Pixile Studios. The song is great, the weird little voices are awesome, and man oh man, does this thing escalate.
Already in Early Access on Steam, Super Animal Royale is coming to consoles and Stadia this year, starting with an early access release on Xbox Game Preview and Game Pass on June 1. There isn't an announced date yet, but the game will also be coming to Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, and Stadia later this year.
The following is perhaps too big to quote, but the info is so good, I'm just gonna do it anyhow. From a recent press release:
"Super Animal Royale is a battle royale with a zoological twist. Play as your favorite cuddly, genetically modified animal picked from 300+ breeds, find your style with 600+ cosmetic items, and jump off the back of a Giant Eagle and into a 64-player fight to the death! You’ll fire shotguns and sparrows, toss grenades and bananas, ride emus and hamster balls all the way to the top of the food chain. The explosive top-down action pairs perfectly with an expressive flat-design style, and the innovative fog-of-war-system enables a game that’s as deep and strategic as it is fun and accessible."
I'm there. You're there. Let's face it, we're all there. I call dibs on the chipmunk.
It's been over ten years since a Tony Hawk game has hit a Nintendo console, and that one included a skateboard controller you could ride on because Wii motion controls. However, that's about to change because Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 is dropping in on the Nintendo Switch on June 25th. With the game already out on the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S, it's now time for Nintendo fans to relive the two games that started it all for the first time since they hit the Nintendo 64 (and the Game Boy Color/Advance, but do we really count those?). More info for Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 can be found at www.tonyhawkthegame.com.
The highly anticipated Mass Effect: Legendary Edition is right around the corner with the saga slated to release on May 14, 2021. Before that date, EA has revealed how the collection will run on all the console versions.
Notably, the Series X version will run up to 120fps in the prioritise framerate mode, whereas the PS5 version is limited to 60fps in the same mode. Both next-gen versions will run at 4K resolution at up to 60fps in the quality mode. PC players will have both beat thanks to 240fps and 240Hz support.
The Mass Effect Legendary Edition includes single-player base content and over 40 DLC from the highly acclaimed Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2, and Mass Effect 3 games, including promo weapons, armors, and packs — remastered and optimized for 4K Ultra HD.
Mass Effect Legendary Edition is coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. It will also be playable and enhanced on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series platforms via backward compatibility.
Its been a minute since we checked in on our streaming partner Games N Moorer. He has been steadily streaming his usual diet of Mario Maker and beat em' ups. But last night, he branched out and spent a couple of hours streaming Judgement on Stadia.
Along the the main title, Joseph spent a liberal amount of time messing around with the classic Sega games embedded in Judgement - a long-time Yakuza franchise tradition that he was unaware of. Judgement is an interesting game to stream, as the series is very story focused, with bursts of action. But the storyline is so well done that the stream often feels like watching a crime show with a buddy. Check it out here:
Follow us on Twitter for announcements about when Games N Moorer is going live at @GamingNexus and @GamesNMoorer. Joseph streams on Facebook at http://facebook.com/gamesnmoorer/ and on Twitch at https://twitch.tv/gamesnmoorer .
Biomutant is a game that, as of the last few trailers, is firmly on my radar. Before the past few weeks, it had merely been that game I had heard of that kept getting delayed. Then, in April, the ‘World of Biomutant’ trailer was released and I posted how I couldn’t get over how cool it looked. As it turns out, I still can’t get over how cool Biomutant looks, especially after the new gameplay video that came out today courtesy of GameInformer.
The trailer shows off just under 12 minutes of new footage of the game's bizarre biomes and crazy combat. Feast your eyes on it below.
Thanks to a Q&A, also published by GameInformer, I learnt a lot of cool info that wasn’t included in the gameplay video.
For instance, I had no idea there was a character creator in the game. In creating your character, you’re able to choose one of six breeds: Primal, Dumdon, Rex, Hyla, Fip, and Murgel. Each reflects the game’s six tribes and sports inherent traits and advantages.
Biomutant also features classes. Biomutant has 5 classes to choose from. Each comes with a starter skill and a unique perk. Be sure to check out the full Q&A linked above for a breakdown. Oh, there’s also a photo mode!
Biomutant also features what is essentially a karma system with Aura. Biomutant features choice-driven gameplay and storytelling, and your decisions fall into the light or dark side of the spectrum.
If you’re as interested in Biomutant as I am, be sure to read the full Q&A linked above.
While Back 4 Blood got delayed a little bit, more details of the game are hitting today. Like Left 4 Dead, there's an AI director that will tailor the game as you play so each session can be different. In addition, there's a card system that's going to be in play that can adjust the way the game plays as well as your abilities.
The card system will allow you to do deck builds that can tailor to the way you play. They range from passive to active effects and have a wide range of game changing options that will further enhance the replayability of Back 4 Blood. For those who don't want to deal with the cards, there will be some pre-built decks that you can use, but you can delve deeper into building your deck if you so desire.
Back 4 Blood is scheduled for release on October 12, 2021.
Next week on May 11th and 12th, HTC will be hosting Vivecon, a two day virtual convention on all things HTC Vive. I've signed up for it and hopefully I can attend as I'll be at a location which might have spotty Wifi for those days. In any case, I was expecting an announcement of a new VR headset but we might be getting two of them.
Protocol is reporting that HTC will take the time to announce both a Vive Focus 3 Business Edition and a Vive Pro 2. The Focus line is a stand alone series of headsets akin to the Oculus Quest. I was able to use the Focus at CES a few years ago and I thought it was solid at the time. Of course, it wasn't a lengthy review session, but for the 15 minutes or so that I used it, I liked what i saw.
The Focus line isn't really for everyday consumers and as such, you don't see many gamers talking about it. Businesses in need of a high quality stand alone headset have a few options, but the Focus is one of them and it looks like HTC will be updating that line next week.
The other headset being reported on is the Vive Pro 2. Now the Vive Pro was the successor to the Vive and again, more business focused. HTC went with the Cosmos line for the consumers, but I do see some gamers using the Vive Pro as it's got good optics, great screens, and is wireless compatible so you have all the makings of a VR HMD that can provide a high quality gaming experience with outside in tracking via the lighthouse base stations.
From the sounds of it, Vivecon won't have much in terms of gaming, but if the Vive Pro provides a lot of the hardware capable of delivering a great gaming experience, then this is another option available to people who are looking to get into VR albeit an expensive one it sounds like. Protocol says there's reports that it would be around $1000 for the Pro 2, which if true would put it in line with a full Valve Index setup, but a few hundred short of the HTC Cosmos Elite setup.
We've got a little less than week though to find out and I can't wait to see if indeed we're getting two new VR HMDs from HTC when Vivecon commences next Tuesday.
In totality, Season 3 will offer the following content over time:
May the furrth be with you! Publisher THQ Nordic has released a new trailer for the upcoming Biomutant that pays homage to the Star Wars franchise on Star Wars celebration day.
Biomutant is an open-world, post-apocalyptic Kung-Fu fable RPG, with a unique martial arts styled combat system allowing you to mix melee, shooting and mutant ability action. Biomutant is slated for release later this month on May 25, 2021, for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.