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Found 396 results

  1. Jack Gardner

    Assassin's Creed Goes Greek

    Assassin's Creed Odyssey made a huge splash at E3 2018. It seems to be a natural extension of its predecessor with its creative director even straight up describing it as an RPG, which feels like a big step for the series. It also makes the comparison to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt make that much more sense. Which... yeah, there's a pretty strong Witcher 3 influence at play in Odyssey (and I don't mean that in a bad way at all). Players take on the role of a lowly mercenary as either Alexios or Kassandra, a descendant of Spartan King Leonidas. Despite being abandoned as a child, Alexios/Kassandra inherit the broken spear of Leonidas which seems to possess some kind of power all its own. This artifact allows players to pull off arrow barrages, sneaky stealth takedowns, and table-turning melee moves. And this power to beat up dudes is conveniently bestowed upon the main character when Greece found itself embroiled in the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta, a perfect time period for assassin shenanigans. In short, Assassin's Creed Odyssey looks cool, fun, and good. And it's great that we won't have to wait too long to see if it lives up to its initial impression. Assassin's Creed Odyssey will release on October 5 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
  2. Assassin's Creed Odyssey made a huge splash at E3 2018. It seems to be a natural extension of its predecessor with its creative director even straight up describing it as an RPG, which feels like a big step for the series. It also makes the comparison to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt make that much more sense. Which... yeah, there's a pretty strong Witcher 3 influence at play in Odyssey (and I don't mean that in a bad way at all). Players take on the role of a lowly mercenary as either Alexios or Kassandra, a descendant of Spartan King Leonidas. Despite being abandoned as a child, Alexios/Kassandra inherit the broken spear of Leonidas which seems to possess some kind of power all its own. This artifact allows players to pull off arrow barrages, sneaky stealth takedowns, and table-turning melee moves. And this power to beat up dudes is conveniently bestowed upon the main character when Greece found itself embroiled in the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta, a perfect time period for assassin shenanigans. In short, Assassin's Creed Odyssey looks cool, fun, and good. And it's great that we won't have to wait too long to see if it lives up to its initial impression. Assassin's Creed Odyssey will release on October 5 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. View full article
  3. With the words, "Piracy Is Dead, Long Live Piracy," Justin Farren, the creative director of Skull and Bones, put pirating back into the limelight at E3. The world has changed and piracy in the west has been all but shut down. The east, however, still presents intrepid pirate captains with opportunities. Skull and Bones puts players at the helm of a pirate ship sailing the Indian Ocean, turning it into one wide open hunting ground. Will you be the one who climbs the ranks of the infamous and bloodthirsty to be remembered as one of the most successful pirates of all-time? The central premise of Skull and Bones seems hard to pin down, aside from all of the pirating of course. Players sail the seas in search of treasure and adventure. By various means, players can uncover clues or tips that hint at locations of interest where treasure might be or the route of a vessel worth plundering. Be warned, however. The seas are also home to other players who are also on the hunt for gold and glory. This, I believe, is the central tension around which Skull and Bones has built its gameplay. When players will encounter one another on the high seas - will they ally to take on bigger missions or will they start a fight to the death for one another's booty? Seeing some gameplay helped to give the game a bit more substance. Players will be able to disguise their ships and essentially enter stealth mode by flying the colors of friendly vessels. This will give the advantage of surprise to wily captains or be necessary to sneak by imposing, land-based fortifications. Each ship can be outfitted with a variety of equipment for aesthetic or functional purposes. Some examples include anti-boarding armor, a variety of cannons, and even a ship-based battering ram. Attacking weak trading ships will alert nearby warships that will attempt to corner players and sink them to reclaim stolen property. The largest of these will require the assistance of several players to fight off successfully. Different ships have different special abilities, which will make cooperation all the more important if players wish to survive.... it will also make backstabbing after cooperation has ended more appealing to the more mischievous out there. Skull and Bones will release sometime in 2019. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  4. With the words, "Piracy Is Dead, Long Live Piracy," Justin Farren, the creative director of Skull and Bones, put pirating back into the limelight at E3. The world has changed and piracy in the west has been all but shut down. The east, however, still presents intrepid pirate captains with opportunities. Skull and Bones puts players at the helm of a pirate ship sailing the Indian Ocean, turning it into one wide open hunting ground. Will you be the one who climbs the ranks of the infamous and bloodthirsty to be remembered as one of the most successful pirates of all-time? The central premise of Skull and Bones seems hard to pin down, aside from all of the pirating of course. Players sail the seas in search of treasure and adventure. By various means, players can uncover clues or tips that hint at locations of interest where treasure might be or the route of a vessel worth plundering. Be warned, however. The seas are also home to other players who are also on the hunt for gold and glory. This, I believe, is the central tension around which Skull and Bones has built its gameplay. When players will encounter one another on the high seas - will they ally to take on bigger missions or will they start a fight to the death for one another's booty? Seeing some gameplay helped to give the game a bit more substance. Players will be able to disguise their ships and essentially enter stealth mode by flying the colors of friendly vessels. This will give the advantage of surprise to wily captains or be necessary to sneak by imposing, land-based fortifications. Each ship can be outfitted with a variety of equipment for aesthetic or functional purposes. Some examples include anti-boarding armor, a variety of cannons, and even a ship-based battering ram. Attacking weak trading ships will alert nearby warships that will attempt to corner players and sink them to reclaim stolen property. The largest of these will require the assistance of several players to fight off successfully. Different ships have different special abilities, which will make cooperation all the more important if players wish to survive.... it will also make backstabbing after cooperation has ended more appealing to the more mischievous out there. Skull and Bones will release sometime in 2019. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  5. There's no getting around it; the biggest reveal of Ubisoft's E3 show had to be Jade as the antagonist of Beyond Good & Evil 2. The flashy trailer takes its time to introduce each member of the lovable space pirate crew, with special attention paid to series staple Pey'j and two new characters. We're given a brief insight into the life of the holistic chief medical officer Uma as she works on crewmen affected by Pey'j's cooking. The camera lingers on an interaction between chief engineer Callum and his loving engine. And then everything blows up. Gabrielle Shrager, narrative director on Beyond Good & Evil 2, described the game as a space opera. That label might have been hard to see for a game from the early 2000s about an adventurous photographer, but the sequel (which is confusingly a prequel) seems primed to live up to that term. Players take on the role of a space pirate captain in the 24th century that has somehow, probably with some kind of botched heist, earned the ire of the DomZ, the powerful alien race from the first game. Following the explosive trailer, the world was treated to the first look at Beyond Good & Evil 2 in action. The scenes shown took place largely in or around the ancient city of Ganesha. It offered brief, tantalizing snippets of gameplay showing an expansive world, multiple modes of travel including aircraft and jetpacks, and both aerial and ground combat. It was difficult to get a sense of how the game actually plays, but the general impression given was that the world will be colossal in scope. The universe of Beyond Good & Evil 2 will be so big, in fact, that Ubisoft has partnered with an open platform called Hit Record to help fill it with art via the Space Monkey Program. Ostensibly, they are doing this because there's more work to be done than can be feasibly done in-house and Hit Record will allow them to meet their perceived needs. The company, run by Joseph Gordon Levitt, will be paying collaborators for their contributions to Beyond Good & Evil 2, though that hasn't stopped some industry watchdogs from crying foul. Critics say that, while the idea of more opensource development for huge projects might be an interesting one, it will ultimately be a way of hiring freelancers to avoid paying for things like employee benefits or committing to contracts. This move has become more common in the game industry over the last few years, putting specialized creators into the unpredictable position of constantly moving from one job to the next with no stability and no guaranteed payment. This is called speculative work or spec work and spawned the hashtag #NoSpec on Twitter where various voices from around the industry gave their thoughts on the subject. While we don't have any hard release date for Beyond Good & Evil 2, we do know that there will be an event later this fall dedicated to the game and its community. BGE Fest will take place in Montpellier, France where we will likely present more details on what kind of creative community they aim to foster around Beyond Good & Evil as well as the game itself.
  6. There's no getting around it; the biggest reveal of Ubisoft's E3 show had to be Jade as the antagonist of Beyond Good & Evil 2. The flashy trailer takes its time to introduce each member of the lovable space pirate crew, with special attention paid to series staple Pey'j and two new characters. We're given a brief insight into the life of the holistic chief medical officer Uma as she works on crewmen affected by Pey'j's cooking. The camera lingers on an interaction between chief engineer Callum and his loving engine. And then everything blows up. Gabrielle Shrager, narrative director on Beyond Good & Evil 2, described the game as a space opera. That label might have been hard to see for a game from the early 2000s about an adventurous photographer, but the sequel (which is confusingly a prequel) seems primed to live up to that term. Players take on the role of a space pirate captain in the 24th century that has somehow, probably with some kind of botched heist, earned the ire of the DomZ, the powerful alien race from the first game. Following the explosive trailer, the world was treated to the first look at Beyond Good & Evil 2 in action. The scenes shown took place largely in or around the ancient city of Ganesha. It offered brief, tantalizing snippets of gameplay showing an expansive world, multiple modes of travel including aircraft and jetpacks, and both aerial and ground combat. It was difficult to get a sense of how the game actually plays, but the general impression given was that the world will be colossal in scope. The universe of Beyond Good & Evil 2 will be so big, in fact, that Ubisoft has partnered with an open platform called Hit Record to help fill it with art via the Space Monkey Program. Ostensibly, they are doing this because there's more work to be done than can be feasibly done in-house and Hit Record will allow them to meet their perceived needs. The company, run by Joseph Gordon Levitt, will be paying collaborators for their contributions to Beyond Good & Evil 2, though that hasn't stopped some industry watchdogs from crying foul. Critics say that, while the idea of more opensource development for huge projects might be an interesting one, it will ultimately be a way of hiring freelancers to avoid paying for things like employee benefits or committing to contracts. This move has become more common in the game industry over the last few years, putting specialized creators into the unpredictable position of constantly moving from one job to the next with no stability and no guaranteed payment. This is called speculative work or spec work and spawned the hashtag #NoSpec on Twitter where various voices from around the industry gave their thoughts on the subject. While we don't have any hard release date for Beyond Good & Evil 2, we do know that there will be an event later this fall dedicated to the game and its community. BGE Fest will take place in Montpellier, France where we will likely present more details on what kind of creative community they aim to foster around Beyond Good & Evil as well as the game itself. View full article
  7. As the Microsoft E3 press conference drew to a close, Phil Spencer's final statements were cut off by a burst of static, as though the Microsoft stage had been hacked by outside forces. Sure enough, it was the long-awaited reveal of Cyberpunk 2077. In January 2013, the game was first promoted with a provocative teaser trailer. Five years later, we finally have a new look at the highly-anticipated RPG from the developers of The Witcher III: Wild Hunt. Unlike that initial teaser, which was entirely pre-rendered, this new trailer consists entirely of in-engine footage. Cyberpunk 2077 is a follow-up to the legendary pen-and-paper RPG, Cyberpunk 2020, and puts players in Night City, California, a science-fiction world of corporate espionage, wealth disparity, cybernetic modifications, and bright neon lights. While no actual gameplay was shown, the imagery on display points towards a number of prospective gameplay mechanics. The video begins on a subway, suggesting a vast city and public transportation system for players to explore. The protagonist is seen driving a retro-future 1980s car, so maybe vehicles will be a central component of the game, a 21st century counterpart to Roach, the horse from The Witcher III. The trailer offers fleeting glimpses of underground fight clubs, people who are augmented to the point where they're more machine than human, children playing virtual reality video games, and even a basketball player using booster jets attached to his boots to gain an extra edge. More than any gameplay revelations, the trailer offers a look at a city on the brink of collapse, wallowing in a mix of despair, glamour, violence, and rollicking freedom. As the unnamed protagonist of the clip says, "It's a city of dreams, and I'm a big dreamer." While Cyberpunk 2077 is arguably still as mysterious as ever, we now have a solid look at the setting of the title, and the appropriately punk rock tone Polish developer CD Projekt Red is attempting to capture. Cyberpunk 2077 looks to be shaping up to capture the spirit of the Cyberpunk movement, the tech-based optimism of its 1980s inspiration, and the role-playing mastery of its developers. Cyberpunk 2077 will release "when it's ready." View full article
  8. As the Microsoft E3 press conference drew to a close, Phil Spencer's final statements were cut off by a burst of static, as though the Microsoft stage had been hacked by outside forces. Sure enough, it was the long-awaited reveal of Cyberpunk 2077. In January 2013, the game was first promoted with a provocative teaser trailer. Five years later, we finally have a new look at the highly-anticipated RPG from the developers of The Witcher III: Wild Hunt. Unlike that initial teaser, which was entirely pre-rendered, this new trailer consists entirely of in-engine footage. Cyberpunk 2077 is a follow-up to the legendary pen-and-paper RPG, Cyberpunk 2020, and puts players in Night City, California, a science-fiction world of corporate espionage, wealth disparity, cybernetic modifications, and bright neon lights. While no actual gameplay was shown, the imagery on display points towards a number of prospective gameplay mechanics. The video begins on a subway, suggesting a vast city and public transportation system for players to explore. The protagonist is seen driving a retro-future 1980s car, so maybe vehicles will be a central component of the game, a 21st century counterpart to Roach, the horse from The Witcher III. The trailer offers fleeting glimpses of underground fight clubs, people who are augmented to the point where they're more machine than human, children playing virtual reality video games, and even a basketball player using booster jets attached to his boots to gain an extra edge. More than any gameplay revelations, the trailer offers a look at a city on the brink of collapse, wallowing in a mix of despair, glamour, violence, and rollicking freedom. As the unnamed protagonist of the clip says, "It's a city of dreams, and I'm a big dreamer." While Cyberpunk 2077 is arguably still as mysterious as ever, we now have a solid look at the setting of the title, and the appropriately punk rock tone Polish developer CD Projekt Red is attempting to capture. Cyberpunk 2077 looks to be shaping up to capture the spirit of the Cyberpunk movement, the tech-based optimism of its 1980s inspiration, and the role-playing mastery of its developers. Cyberpunk 2077 will release "when it's ready."
  9. Jack Gardner

    Unravel Two Announced and Released Today

    EA both announced and released Unravel Two today in a fun twist on how long it usually takes E3 games to reach the consoles and PCs of the general gaming community. The sequel to the well-received indie platformer aims to foster a spirit of friendship and adventure with its new focus on co-op/dual character mechanics. Coming to us courtesy of Coldwood Interactive, Unravel Two takes the physics platforming from the first game and adds in an interesting wrinkle with co-op. Having lost everything in a terrible storm, Yarny manages to connect with another creature like itself and the duo set out for adventure. This connection allows the two Yarnys to fuse together or split apart to accomplish tasks independently. If you're not a fan of co-op, don't worry - it's not mandatory to play the game with someone else. EA assured everyone that solo players will be able to enjoy the game, too. The stage demo showed the two yarn creatures helping one another to traverse a wilderness setting while pursued by a wild pheasant (it might not be a pheasant, but I'm not on an expert on those fowl creatures). The co-op feature was used to distract the pheasant while one or the other Yarny navigated a puzzle or escaped to safety. The game will support both online and local co-op play. And, again, this is one E3 announcement that's available right now for about $20 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
  10. EA both announced and released Unravel Two today in a fun twist on how long it usually takes E3 games to reach the consoles and PCs of the general gaming community. The sequel to the well-received indie platformer aims to foster a spirit of friendship and adventure with its new focus on co-op/dual character mechanics. Coming to us courtesy of Coldwood Interactive, Unravel Two takes the physics platforming from the first game and adds in an interesting wrinkle with co-op. Having lost everything in a terrible storm, Yarny manages to connect with another creature like itself and the duo set out for adventure. This connection allows the two Yarnys to fuse together or split apart to accomplish tasks independently. If you're not a fan of co-op, don't worry - it's not mandatory to play the game with someone else. EA assured everyone that solo players will be able to enjoy the game, too. The stage demo showed the two yarn creatures helping one another to traverse a wilderness setting while pursued by a wild pheasant (it might not be a pheasant, but I'm not on an expert on those fowl creatures). The co-op feature was used to distract the pheasant while one or the other Yarny navigated a puzzle or escaped to safety. The game will support both online and local co-op play. And, again, this is one E3 announcement that's available right now for about $20 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. View full article
  11. Nintendo went a bit Pokénuts last night when it announced not one, not two, but three new Pokémon titles headed for their flagship console. To clarify, these are supposedly not the materialization of the classic Pokémon experience for console that the company teased last year around E3. Instead, Nintendo aims to do something different. The Switch's first Pokémon is titled Pokémon Quest and it's actually available right now. The new adventure debuts on Switch and will be making its way to mobile platforms around the end of June. The new title brings players to Tumblecube Island, where of all the Pokémon are shaped like cubes. Basically, it looks similar to that popular Minecraft mod that added Pokémon to the creative crafting game. It's adorable and, while initially jarring, definitely something that looks like it could catch on with a wide audience. In Pokémon Quest, players exert indirect control over their animal companions as the ever-growing Poképack clears stage after stage, collecting new items and Pokémon along the way. Between stages, players can build up their base camp, train their Pokémon, and cook them delicious meals. Of course, Pokémon Quest is a free-to-play game, or a "free-to-start" game as Nintendo calls it. That means Nintendo has provided a number of items and packs that people can purchase. These range from $5-$18 apiece, and include items that allow players to cook more meals, new Pokémon, and a variety of Pokéballs - and, of course, more in-game currency. Pokémon Quest uses PM Tickets as its currency, which can be used to speed up different in-game tasks. Yeah, Pokémon Quest will make Nintendo a zillion dollars. The other two games Nintendo announced come in a pair. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! are based off of Pokémon Yellow, each featuring 151 Pokémon with a selection of Alolan versions for those 151. The Let's Go games will have interactions with Pokémon Go, meaning that players who catch Pokémon in Pokémon Go will be able to use them in Let's Go. That's a pretty fantastic idea. The Let's Go games will also use the capture mechanic from Pokémon Go, a notion that might prove more divisive. Players will be able to use the Switch controllers to toss out Pokéballs at different angles to capture new Pokémon. To further deepen the fantasy of actually catching them all, players will be able to buy the Pokéball Plus, a standalone accessory that takes the place of the Joy-Con. The Pokéball Plus has a joystick to allow it to take on the role of a Joy-Con while also having built in lights and sounds specific to Let's Go. It can also work with Pokémon Go in place of the Pokéball accessory that acts as a pedometer and capture aid for the mobile title. However, with a battery life of three hours, it might not be ideal for long rambles in the outdoors. In a neat twist to the Pokémon formula, Let's Go will offer a co-op experience that allows two players to catch Pokémon together and bring their Pokémon Go captures into the same world. This could be a big deal for players who have only ever experienced Pokémon solo or in competition. Let's Go retains some of the features of Pokémon Go and expands on others. That doesn't mean more traditional parts of the franchise are falling by the wayside. The Switch exclusives will feature trainer battles, gyms, a story, and many of the other classic Pokémon staples. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! (along with the Pokéball Plus) will release later this year on November 16 for the Nintendo Switch.
  12. Nintendo went a bit Pokénuts last night when it announced not one, not two, but three new Pokémon titles headed for their flagship console. To clarify, these are supposedly not the materialization of the classic Pokémon experience for console that the company teased last year around E3. Instead, Nintendo aims to do something different. The Switch's first Pokémon is titled Pokémon Quest and it's actually available right now. The new adventure debuts on Switch and will be making its way to mobile platforms around the end of June. The new title brings players to Tumblecube Island, where of all the Pokémon are shaped like cubes. Basically, it looks similar to that popular Minecraft mod that added Pokémon to the creative crafting game. It's adorable and, while initially jarring, definitely something that looks like it could catch on with a wide audience. In Pokémon Quest, players exert indirect control over their animal companions as the ever-growing Poképack clears stage after stage, collecting new items and Pokémon along the way. Between stages, players can build up their base camp, train their Pokémon, and cook them delicious meals. Of course, Pokémon Quest is a free-to-play game, or a "free-to-start" game as Nintendo calls it. That means Nintendo has provided a number of items and packs that people can purchase. These range from $5-$18 apiece, and include items that allow players to cook more meals, new Pokémon, and a variety of Pokéballs - and, of course, more in-game currency. Pokémon Quest uses PM Tickets as its currency, which can be used to speed up different in-game tasks. Yeah, Pokémon Quest will make Nintendo a zillion dollars. The other two games Nintendo announced come in a pair. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! are based off of Pokémon Yellow, each featuring 151 Pokémon with a selection of Alolan versions for those 151. The Let's Go games will have interactions with Pokémon Go, meaning that players who catch Pokémon in Pokémon Go will be able to use them in Let's Go. That's a pretty fantastic idea. The Let's Go games will also use the capture mechanic from Pokémon Go, a notion that might prove more divisive. Players will be able to use the Switch controllers to toss out Pokéballs at different angles to capture new Pokémon. To further deepen the fantasy of actually catching them all, players will be able to buy the Pokéball Plus, a standalone accessory that takes the place of the Joy-Con. The Pokéball Plus has a joystick to allow it to take on the role of a Joy-Con while also having built in lights and sounds specific to Let's Go. It can also work with Pokémon Go in place of the Pokéball accessory that acts as a pedometer and capture aid for the mobile title. However, with a battery life of three hours, it might not be ideal for long rambles in the outdoors. In a neat twist to the Pokémon formula, Let's Go will offer a co-op experience that allows two players to catch Pokémon together and bring their Pokémon Go captures into the same world. This could be a big deal for players who have only ever experienced Pokémon solo or in competition. Let's Go retains some of the features of Pokémon Go and expands on others. That doesn't mean more traditional parts of the franchise are falling by the wayside. The Switch exclusives will feature trainer battles, gyms, a story, and many of the other classic Pokémon staples. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Lets' Go, Eevee! (along with the Pokéball Plus) will release later this year on November 16 for the Nintendo Switch. View full article
  13. Following the massive success of Threes in 2014, which some argue is one of the finest puzzle games of all-time, designer Asher Vollmer put together Sirvo Studios, a small development studio aiming to make something a bit bigger in scope than the modest Threes. That something turned out to be Guildlings, a game about which there were precious few details. We covered those breadcrumbs last March, but now we have some more substantial information to share. Guildlings will follow the adventures of Coda, a young, homeschooled kid who contracts a powerful curse from a mysterious smartphone. Coda will have to recruit friends gifted with magic, the titular Guildlings, and embark on a road trip to lift the curse and save the realm of Worldaria. Sirvo based the magic in Worldaria on the strength of the emotions felt by the magic wielder. If the one casting magic doesn't feel right, then the magic isn't right. This means that players will need to be attentive to the different emotional states of their allies while trying to solve the problems plaguing the land. Picking the right conflict and dialogue options to keep Coda's friends in the best frame of mind to tackle a given problem certainly sounds interesting. It's a system that encourages empathy and creativity, with multiple solutions to many of the problems Guildlings sets before the player. If the basic story pitch sounds like a setup for an old-school JRPG, well... Sirvo has said that it drew a lot of inspiration from the genre to create Guildlings. Specifically, it's designed to be a cross between that classic gaming genre and the more modern incarnation of adventure games with branching story paths and silly puzzle solutions. The studio is well aware that many people might reflexively recoil from an RPG designed for mobile from the ground up. However, they want to assure players that Guildlings isn't a snoozy grindfest or a facade of charm hiding manipulative design to milk microtransactions. Instead, Sirvo has chosen to release several episodes of Guildlings to help keep the focus of the RPG squarely on its charming world and narrative. While traditional JRPG fighting doesn't seem to be highlighted in the trailer, Sirvo has opted to go non-traditional. Instead of a combat system that has only been built around the idea of fighting until one side or the other has perished, the devs crafted something a bit more flexible. How it works will probably require some hands-on time to fully understand, but essentially each encounter has a set number of turns represented by pages. Those turns can have different actions for your Guildlings to take that include reducing the number of turns for the encounter, protecting characters, or altering the final outcome of the encounter. Sirvo believes that this system can be applied to a wide variety of conflicts that range from a traditional fight to battling a horrendous stench, or staying awake through a boring story told at a fancy dinner. How well it will work in practice remains to be seen, but anything that might be able to freshen up an old-as-dirt genre mechanic is worth paying attention to in my book. So, yeah, I'm really looking forward to this delightful-looking game that mixes the shenanigans of a modern road trip with swords and sorcery. Take a bit of Harry Potter, a smidgen of Earthbound, a pinch of Sorcery!, and a dollop of wonderment taken straight from Hayao Miyazaki. Mix it all up with whatever creative energy and game design chops Sirvo has been cooking with up until this point and you've got Guildlings. No release date has been announced yet, but expect to see the title's initial release by late summer or early fall of this year for iOS and Android devices. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! View full article
  14. Following the massive success of Threes in 2014, which some argue is one of the finest puzzle games of all-time, designer Asher Vollmer put together Sirvo Studios, a small development studio aiming to make something a bit bigger in scope than the modest Threes. That something turned out to be Guildlings, a game about which there were precious few details. We covered those breadcrumbs last March, but now we have some more substantial information to share. Guildlings will follow the adventures of Coda, a young, homeschooled kid who contracts a powerful curse from a mysterious smartphone. Coda will have to recruit friends gifted with magic, the titular Guildlings, and embark on a road trip to lift the curse and save the realm of Worldaria. Sirvo based the magic in Worldaria on the strength of the emotions felt by the magic wielder. If the one casting magic doesn't feel right, then the magic isn't right. This means that players will need to be attentive to the different emotional states of their allies while trying to solve the problems plaguing the land. Picking the right conflict and dialogue options to keep Coda's friends in the best frame of mind to tackle a given problem certainly sounds interesting. It's a system that encourages empathy and creativity, with multiple solutions to many of the problems Guildlings sets before the player. If the basic story pitch sounds like a setup for an old-school JRPG, well... Sirvo has said that it drew a lot of inspiration from the genre to create Guildlings. Specifically, it's designed to be a cross between that classic gaming genre and the more modern incarnation of adventure games with branching story paths and silly puzzle solutions. The studio is well aware that many people might reflexively recoil from an RPG designed for mobile from the ground up. However, they want to assure players that Guildlings isn't a snoozy grindfest or a facade of charm hiding manipulative design to milk microtransactions. Instead, Sirvo has chosen to release several episodes of Guildlings to help keep the focus of the RPG squarely on its charming world and narrative. While traditional JRPG fighting doesn't seem to be highlighted in the trailer, Sirvo has opted to go non-traditional. Instead of a combat system that has only been built around the idea of fighting until one side or the other has perished, the devs crafted something a bit more flexible. How it works will probably require some hands-on time to fully understand, but essentially each encounter has a set number of turns represented by pages. Those turns can have different actions for your Guildlings to take that include reducing the number of turns for the encounter, protecting characters, or altering the final outcome of the encounter. Sirvo believes that this system can be applied to a wide variety of conflicts that range from a traditional fight to battling a horrendous stench, or staying awake through a boring story told at a fancy dinner. How well it will work in practice remains to be seen, but anything that might be able to freshen up an old-as-dirt genre mechanic is worth paying attention to in my book. So, yeah, I'm really looking forward to this delightful-looking game that mixes the shenanigans of a modern road trip with swords and sorcery. Take a bit of Harry Potter, a smidgen of Earthbound, a pinch of Sorcery!, and a dollop of wonderment taken straight from Hayao Miyazaki. Mix it all up with whatever creative energy and game design chops Sirvo has been cooking with up until this point and you've got Guildlings. No release date has been announced yet, but expect to see the title's initial release by late summer or early fall of this year for iOS and Android devices. Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!
  15. Square Enix continues the trickle of Kingdom Hearts III news with a new trailer that shows off a collection of mini-games based on the handheld LCD systems that were popular in the 80s. Players take on the role of Sora and Mickey as they complete various tasks related to original Mickey Mouse cartoons from back in the day. The trailer shows four different mini-games titled The Barnyard Battle, The Karnival Kid, Giantland, and Musical Farmer, respectively. The Classic Kingdom trailer comes courtesy of the Kingdom Hearts Union X fan event being held in Anaheim, California. Kingdom Hearts III will be coming to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The release date has not officially been revealed quite yet, though there are hints that it could be coming sooner rather than later. I'd put money on us learning that information sometime during E3 2018.
  16. Square Enix continues the trickle of Kingdom Hearts III news with a new trailer that shows off a collection of mini-games based on the handheld LCD systems that were popular in the 80s. Players take on the role of Sora and Mickey as they complete various tasks related to original Mickey Mouse cartoons from back in the day. The trailer shows four different mini-games titled The Barnyard Battle, The Karnival Kid, Giantland, and Musical Farmer, respectively. The Classic Kingdom trailer comes courtesy of the Kingdom Hearts Union X fan event being held in Anaheim, California. Kingdom Hearts III will be coming to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The release date has not officially been revealed quite yet, though there are hints that it could be coming sooner rather than later. I'd put money on us learning that information sometime during E3 2018. View full article
  17. Frostpunk gives players the task of guiding the growth and survival of New London, the last city on Earth. In order to survive in the face of an unending winter that has largely wiped out humanity across the globe, the final remnants of the human race have turned to using the power of steam. Starting from a collection of shelters in a somewhat sheltered valley, players guide New London to greatness and sustainability by managing the expansion of the city, deciding on the policies regarding food, water, and the most precious resource of all: heat. Players will be responsible for deciding how heat is distributed throughout their city, a power that can mean the difference between life and death. As the city grows, more conflicts and problems will arise from the general population. Players will have to establish laws and policies that govern the populace. Do you prioritize healthcare or building maintenance? Do you make sure everyone is fed even at the cost of increasing police presence? Another wrinkle on top of everything else, the population has to have hope. Everyone in New London is well aware of the precarious nature of their survival. The more desperate the situation becomes, the less hope people have and the more likely the city is to revolt or have various problems. As players progress, small decisions will add up and lead to decision points that will alter the entirety of society forever. How far is too far to maintain order and stability in a city that represents the last shot at the survival of the species? Once players advance to a certain technological level they can explore the surrounding world by sending out expeditions into the blinding frozen wastes. These are risky endeavors that could go down in flames and ice or discover a treasure trove of new citizens, technology, or resources. It can be hard to get society to that higher tech level, but the higher end of the tech tree brings automated drones and airships that can be a huge boon to New London. Frostpunk releases on April 24 for PC .
  18. Frostpunk gives players the task of guiding the growth and survival of New London, the last city on Earth. In order to survive in the face of an unending winter that has largely wiped out humanity across the globe, the final remnants of the human race have turned to using the power of steam. Starting from a collection of shelters in a somewhat sheltered valley, players guide New London to greatness and sustainability by managing the expansion of the city, deciding on the policies regarding food, water, and the most precious resource of all: heat. Players will be responsible for deciding how heat is distributed throughout their city, a power that can mean the difference between life and death. As the city grows, more conflicts and problems will arise from the general population. Players will have to establish laws and policies that govern the populace. Do you prioritize healthcare or building maintenance? Do you make sure everyone is fed even at the cost of increasing police presence? Another wrinkle on top of everything else, the population has to have hope. Everyone in New London is well aware of the precarious nature of their survival. The more desperate the situation becomes, the less hope people have and the more likely the city is to revolt or have various problems. As players progress, small decisions will add up and lead to decision points that will alter the entirety of society forever. How far is too far to maintain order and stability in a city that represents the last shot at the survival of the species? Once players advance to a certain technological level they can explore the surrounding world by sending out expeditions into the blinding frozen wastes. These are risky endeavors that could go down in flames and ice or discover a treasure trove of new citizens, technology, or resources. It can be hard to get society to that higher tech level, but the higher end of the tech tree brings automated drones and airships that can be a huge boon to New London. Frostpunk releases on April 24 for PC . View full article
  19. Last week, E-Line Media and Endless Interactive announced The Endless Mission, a sandbox game with the goal of being both fun and an educational experience that teaches people how to make games. It serves as an enjoyable set of game creation tools and a game in its own right. All of that can be hard to visualize. Luckily, there is now a trailer to show off what's possible in The Endless Mission. While we don't have a hard release date, we do know that The Endless Mission will launch this summer in Early Access on Steam.
  20. Last week, E-Line Media and Endless Interactive announced The Endless Mission, a sandbox game with the goal of being both fun and an educational experience that teaches people how to make games. It serves as an enjoyable set of game creation tools and a game in its own right. All of that can be hard to visualize. Luckily, there is now a trailer to show off what's possible in The Endless Mission. While we don't have a hard release date, we do know that The Endless Mission will launch this summer in Early Access on Steam. View full article
  21. The route to an official announcement of the Spyro Reignited Trilogy has been long and confusing. Back in February, Kotaku sources revealed that the game would be coming with an announcement in March for a release in late 2018. Then a Target PR rep accidentally dished on the title just two weeks ago. We now have an official reveal and trailer along with a release date. It turns out that the manager of the Ask Target twitter account didn't have the most recent information on the upcoming trilogy dubbing it the Spyro Treasure Trilogy. It could be that was the working title for Activision's remaster project or it may have been changed at the last minute which led to a delay in the official reveal to early April. Spyro returns in the Spyro Reignited Trilogy which remasters Spyro the Dragon, Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage!, and Spyro: Year of the Dragon. The games have been given an entirely new set of assets based on the original characters and locations from the PlayStation 1 classics. The collection honestly looks like a completely different series of games in the best way possible. As a nod to the original Spyro reveal, players who have the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy on the PS4 can input the following code on the title screen for Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped (↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → square) to watch the trailer for the Spyro Reignited Trilogy (or you can just watch it below). The trilogy was remastered by Toys for Bob and includes revamped environments, modernized controls, and fully recreated cinematics. The team even managed to bring back Tom Kenny, who voiced Spyro in Ripto's Rage! and Year of the Dragon, to rerecord his roles as well as the dialogue for the first title in the series. “We’re deeply passionate about staying true to the legacy of the original three Spyro games with the Spyro Reignited Trilogy,” said Paul Yan, the chief creative officer at Toys for Bob. “We’ve poured a lot of love into making the personalities and worlds feel just like fans remember them, while also keeping the game collection surprisingly fresh with lush, high definition detail. We’re bringing back the Spyro we all fell in love with 20 years ago.” The Spyro Reignited Trilogy will release on September 21 on PS4 and Xbox One.
  22. The route to an official announcement of the Spyro Reignited Trilogy has been long and confusing. Back in February, Kotaku sources revealed that the game would be coming with an announcement in March for a release in late 2018. Then a Target PR rep accidentally dished on the title just two weeks ago. We now have an official reveal and trailer along with a release date. It turns out that the manager of the Ask Target twitter account didn't have the most recent information on the upcoming trilogy dubbing it the Spyro Treasure Trilogy. It could be that was the working title for Activision's remaster project or it may have been changed at the last minute which led to a delay in the official reveal to early April. Spyro returns in the Spyro Reignited Trilogy which remasters Spyro the Dragon, Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage!, and Spyro: Year of the Dragon. The games have been given an entirely new set of assets based on the original characters and locations from the PlayStation 1 classics. The collection honestly looks like a completely different series of games in the best way possible. As a nod to the original Spyro reveal, players who have the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy on the PS4 can input the following code on the title screen for Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped (↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → square) to watch the trailer for the Spyro Reignited Trilogy (or you can just watch it below). The trilogy was remastered by Toys for Bob and includes revamped environments, modernized controls, and fully recreated cinematics. The team even managed to bring back Tom Kenny, who voiced Spyro in Ripto's Rage! and Year of the Dragon, to rerecord his roles as well as the dialogue for the first title in the series. “We’re deeply passionate about staying true to the legacy of the original three Spyro games with the Spyro Reignited Trilogy,” said Paul Yan, the chief creative officer at Toys for Bob. “We’ve poured a lot of love into making the personalities and worlds feel just like fans remember them, while also keeping the game collection surprisingly fresh with lush, high definition detail. We’re bringing back the Spyro we all fell in love with 20 years ago.” The Spyro Reignited Trilogy will release on September 21 on PS4 and Xbox One. View full article
  23. 3Mind Games might not be a developer many have heard of before now, but that could change in the near future. The studio has just announced their first game titled The Protagonist, a narrative-oriented RPG that offers turn-based tactics and divergent story paths in an original sci-fi universe. The team at 3Mind describes the gameplay as a mix between XCOM and Divinity: Original Sin. If that's not enough to get your attention, I don't know what will. The Protagonist stars a galactic special agent who operates under the codename ANGEL. The military force of Terra has come into conflict with the KL-T, a mysterious fleet of robotic ships and soldiers. On a mission to infiltrate and destroy a major space station claimed by the invading KL-T, ANGEL finds herself knocked unconscious and awakens in the space station's infirmary at the heart of the space station with no memory of what has happened. With the station in full lockdown and hostiles around every corner, players have to decide how to escape from the heart of this imposing enemy stronghold while piecing together what happened. Along the way, players can recruit allies who may or may not be loyal to ANGEL's mission. How you treat party members and other NPCs can either benefit you in the long run or hinder your progress or unlock new routes and opportunities. Those who aren't attentive during conversations could be in for some nasty surprises. The Protagonist uses a combat system called Martial Arts Combat System (MACS). This system allows players to customize their hand-to-hand combat abilities. The customization is intended to be so deep that players will be able to create new combos and then share them online with other players. 3Mind Games formed out of development veterans from major studios in the industry like EA and Ubisoft. They're hoping to capture the spirit of Mass Effect inside an indie game package that could roll over into a long-running series. The first trailer for The Protagonist shows ANGEL in action alongside her companion RADICAL, an explosives specialist. The Protagonist will release for PC sometime in 2019.
  24. 3Mind Games might not be a developer many have heard of before now, but that could change in the near future. The studio has just announced their first game titled The Protagonist, a narrative-oriented RPG that offers turn-based tactics and divergent story paths in an original sci-fi universe. The team at 3Mind describes the gameplay as a mix between XCOM and Divinity: Original Sin. If that's not enough to get your attention, I don't know what will. The Protagonist stars a galactic special agent who operates under the codename ANGEL. The military force of Terra has come into conflict with the KL-T, a mysterious fleet of robotic ships and soldiers. On a mission to infiltrate and destroy a major space station claimed by the invading KL-T, ANGEL finds herself knocked unconscious and awakens in the space station's infirmary at the heart of the space station with no memory of what has happened. With the station in full lockdown and hostiles around every corner, players have to decide how to escape from the heart of this imposing enemy stronghold while piecing together what happened. Along the way, players can recruit allies who may or may not be loyal to ANGEL's mission. How you treat party members and other NPCs can either benefit you in the long run or hinder your progress or unlock new routes and opportunities. Those who aren't attentive during conversations could be in for some nasty surprises. The Protagonist uses a combat system called Martial Arts Combat System (MACS). This system allows players to customize their hand-to-hand combat abilities. The customization is intended to be so deep that players will be able to create new combos and then share them online with other players. 3Mind Games formed out of development veterans from major studios in the industry like EA and Ubisoft. They're hoping to capture the spirit of Mass Effect inside an indie game package that could roll over into a long-running series. The first trailer for The Protagonist shows ANGEL in action alongside her companion RADICAL, an explosives specialist. The Protagonist will release for PC sometime in 2019. View full article
  25. It turns out that some rumors do come true! Last week, we reported on a rumor that had Geralt of Rivia entering the fray in the upcoming Soulcalibur VI as a guest fighter. Bandai Namco has since confirmed that rumor with a slick trailer showing the White Wolf in action. After stumbling through a mysterious portal, the witcher Geralt finds himself fighting against the sword-obsessed denizens of Soulcalibur's world in a desperate bid to return home. It turns out, luckily, that all of his tricks seem to work in this new universe. The trailer shows Geralt employing his various sign magic in combination with his trademark fighting style. It also shows Geralt crossing swords with Mitsurugi on the flagstones of Kaer Morhen. That's just cool as heck. Also, Nightmare rides a night-mare. There's still no release date for Soulcalibur VI, but we know it will be releasing later this year for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Expect to see a hard release date when E3 rolls around later this year. View full article
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