The Guardian wonders if an episode of Black Mirror successfully predicts the future of video games. HBO's Westworld episode 5 takes a closer look at two of Westworld's guests, one a neophyte and the other a hardcore player, both struggling to find ways to enjoy themselves. And, despite a healthy relationship spanning over a decade, even Gaming Nexus is now subject to Bethesda witholding review copies until the last minute.
What are you playing this weekend?
Russell Archey, Staff Writer, @NeoScyther
I'll be spending most of my time going through Xanadu Next, an RPG published by Xseed, the same company that publised the Ys series, so I have high hopes going into it for my review. The controls are a bit bumpy, especially when using a gamepad, but the game so far isn't too bad. Then again, I'm going to hold off any judgement until I get further in, as I'd rather not put my foot in my mouth.
Chapel Collins, Staff Writer, @ChapelCollins
Skyrim. I've committed to playing as a vampire, and am constantly reminded as to why I always had trouble with that before. But I'm doing the Dawnguard storyline from the vampire perspective, and I'm learning to function at night and to manage the feelings. I certainly don't feel more powerful than I did as a werewolf, but I am learning to enjoy how much it changes the way the game feels.
Randy Kalista, Staff Writer, @randykalista
Skyrim is officially the first video game I've ever bought twice. Wait. Three times, actually. Got it on disc for Xbox 360. Then I'd apparently wore out that disc until it cracked, so I downloaded it. Now that Skyrim–Special Edition is on PS4, I've...I've bought it again. I've spent at least $180 on Skyrim since 2011. Youch. On the other hand, I've gotten some 750 total hours of game time from it over the past five years, making it cost only $0.24-per-hour of entertainment. Not bad, I guess? Ugh, whatever. Skyrim–Special Edition is really good, you guys.
Right alongside that, I'm reviewing XCOM 2: Shen's Last Gift. It's DLC that adds a robotic soldier to your crew, and steeps the entire meeting in a presumably deep mission structure, led by your chief engineer, Lily Shen. Wish me luck. Survival is never guaranteed in anything you do in XCOM 2.
A quirky indie title I've had my eye on just leaped out of the water and into my boat. Small Radios Big Televisions, which is getting a nod in the Cool Indie Game Name That Isn't Annoying At The Same Time category. A little Fez, a little ... Virginia? I have no idea at the moment. I just fell for the analog technology and almost-typically-superb soundtrack.
And then I'm backtracking to review Just Cause 3: Bavarium Sea Heist. It's weird. I recieved no word that Just Cause 3 launched its final piece of DLC over two months ago. There was no communication from public relations, no news blast from marketers, no rash of reviews from gaming sites, and, generally, no one talking about it anywhere. So, I only figured it out because a Just Cause 3 XL Edition is coming out soon, which includes the entire season pass of DLC content. Anyway, should be fun blowing stuff up real big in the water; the water being, admittedly, one of Just Cause 3's least interesting places to spend time.
John Yan, Senior Hardware Editor, @TheJohnYan
This weekend I will be playing Titanfall 2 as I continue the fun campaign. It seems Respawn has really made up for the the nonexistent single player campaign of the first game. I'm digging it more than I thought I would. Also, a few rounds in XCOM: Enemy Unknown might be in order as well.