Monday, Feb 24
Tuesday, Tuesday, Tuesday, Dracula vs. Satan this Tuesday
Konami's unique reboot of the Castlevania franchise will be wrapping up when Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 launches tomorrow, March 25. Dracula will be returning in the modern era, awoken by his bro Zobek and warned about the return of Satan. Unfortunately everyone wants to kill him, including his own son Alucard, but I guess what does he expect when he's Dracula? Anyway, Konami's put out a launch trailer for the game.
In my head this launch trailer covers the entirety of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 in just a few short minutes. It jumps around so much, to so many different scenes, that it's difficult to tell if there's a plot at all beyond Dracula flying around stabbing dudes mixed with cinematics of monsters smiling. I kid, I kid. I actually enjoyed Mirror of Fate very much on my 3DS and I'm excited to see the story conclude. I've got a bad feeling things end poorly for everyone.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 launches on March 25 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC. Dracula vs. Satan, how much better does it get? OMG, ALUCARD IS DRACULA BACKWARDS MY WHOLE WORLD IS UPSIDE DOWN.
Titanfall is Microsoft's ace up its sleeve. Regardless of the current state of the console war, it would be naive of Microsoft to pass up this opportunity to capitalize. Thus, introducing the limited Xbox One Titanfall bundle. In North America that means the standard $500 Xbox One bundle will also include a free copy of Titanfall. In Europe that means the same, in addition to a permanent price drop to £399.99.
That's a 30 quid drop in price for our European friends, which absolutely can't hurt considering that with price conversion they're paying about $200 more than North Americans even with the price drop. Titanfall bundled in by itself should definitely be a big boon for potential Xbox One purchasers. It is, after all, potentially the biggest weapon the Xbox One seems to have at hand for 2014 what with the rumors of Halo 5's delay.
With that said, Titanfall is still a third party game being published from EA and multi-platform at that. Releasing on March 11, Titanfall will launch on both Xbox One and PC, followed by an Xbox 360 release March 25. That said, hopefully the bundle will make the big $500 price tag on the Xbox One a little easier to swallow. Not a bad deal to have what could be the most popular console multiplayer game of the year packaged with you product for free on its launch.
Friday, Feb 21
Net Articles Summary
- Mionix Naos 7000 Review - eTeknix.com
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti Review - eTeknix.com
- Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan Black 4-way SLI Review - Hardware.Info
- Asustor AS-204TE Review - HardwareHeaven
- Intel Core i7-4960X SLI Gaming Performance Scaling - ocaholic
Dark Souls II stands ready to consume our very souls when we least expect it (well, technically this March), and yet we relish the thrill of standing at the brink of death. Challenge has always been the name of the game in From Software's "Souls" action adventure franchise, but that leads to a challenge for marketing as well.
Namco Bandai's marketing director Lee Kirton admits that by all rights, a title like Dark Souls II should a "menace" in today's mainstream gaming market. Kirton wants Dark Souls II to appeal to the market that enjoys games like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, yet the publisher won't have the luxury of labelling it as an accessible, open world title. No sir, Dark Souls and its sequel are all about getting your arse kicked in many different ways.
That means sharing the message that dying will happen a LOT in Dark Souls, but Namco Bandai feels it's equally important it doesn't turn off players as a result. Kirton explains that the publisher will be refining how it spins the series as a result, turning the gloomy "You Will Die" and "Prepare To Die" sentiment into something more encouraging like "Go Beyond Death."
We already see shades of this in Dark Souls II promotional materials like the new trailer, which is all about getting back on your feet no matter how many times you get roasted alive and stuff. Speaking of promotional materials, Kirton also confirms that Namco Bandai's marketing budget for Dark Souls II will be over £1 million ($1.6 million USD) in the UK alone, so it's taking this game pretty seriously. It doesn't get more serious than Dark Souls, after all.
Donkey Kong's got backup not only in the new DK Country: Tropical Freeze, but in Super Smash Bros. too now that director Masahiro Sakurai confirms Diddy Kong's triumphant return as playable character in the upcoming brawler for Wii U and 3DS.
Diddy's back and he's still taking yoga lessons from Street Fighter's Dhalsim judging from those stretchy limbs of his. He'll also be bringing over his gadgets from DKC again, because Diddy is quite the clever little simian.
February has been good so far with the Smash Bros. reveals, as Punch-Out!!'s Little Mac was also confirmed to be playable just a week ago.
Click here to see more images
Thursday, Feb 20
Net Articles Summary
Vel'Koz will be joining League of Legends soon, and today, Riot has released a trailer for the Void creature, showing off his voice and giving us a glimpse of his demeanor. Yes, a tentacle creature can have a demeanor. Overall, he's kind of evil, and kills people in his pursuit of knowledge.
Dubbed "First Contact," this teaser, Vel'Koz comments on his thirst for knowledge as he approaches an unsuspecting man and a relic. Rather than take the relic, however, he seems to absorb the man -- take his mind, even. Sounds like an overall nice Void monster, right?
The music in the background isn't really what we're used to hearing as far as champ themes go, but it is somewhat reminiscent of Crystal Method's Lucian theme. Anyway, take a look and have a listen.
Previously, Riot also released the splash art for Battlecast Vel'Kos, the alternate release skin. It looks pretty great, but many League players have been more distracted by a possible mystery figure being teased in the background.
Earlier today, the new Featured Gameplay Mode "Hexakill" also went live.
With the Titanfall Xbox One and PC beta rolling to a close, Respawn Entertainment has certainly prove they're capable of delivering a new and exciting FPS experience. Well, in case anyone out there doubted the game's merits and think Respawn is somehow bribing press for positive coverage, the staff finds that plain insulting.
Some of the devs behind Titanfall have been talking to their fans through NeoGAF, giving a little more information about the final release and addressing some problems with bugs in the beta.
When one user mentioned the framerate on Xbox One being terrible, software engineer Rayme Vinson stepped up to the plate, reminding all that the game is still in beta, meaning more work is being done.
Lots of under-the-hood performance improvements have already been done since this Beta build was locked down, that’ll be in the full release. The Beta itself is informing further improvements (and bugfixes, of course).
In case anyone was actually upset at Respawn over problems they ran into during this last beta phase, Titanfall producer Drew McCoy offered a lengthier message, explaining the whole idea behind a beta test is to discover any lingering issues that might need to be fixed before the game's release in March.
As for the delayed Xbox 360 version, well, that's coming along fine right now, McCoy assured.
FYI everyone, these types of problems are exactly why we’re running a beta – to expose problems at scale greater than what we can get ourselves or even with something like the closed Alpha. This wasn’t a capacity issue (at our peak playercount we weren’t close to hitting the ceiling), its a bug. The goal is to find all these things before people have dropped money on buying the game – launch day needs to be as smooth as possible : )
Oh, and for all the speculation going on about the 360 version. Its coming along really well, Bluepoint is full of phenomenally talented devs. We (being Respawn) have been pushing for them to have all the time they need to make it as good as possible, which means extra time for them to polish it up. We’d all like it to be day and date, but a better game a few weeks later is better than an unfinished one earlier.
Perhaps the accusations of press bribary are few and far between, but in a thread where NeoGAF users brought up Titanfall coverage by major outlets -- like IGN, GameSpot and the like -- the idea of did come up. Though this was mostly directed at the industry as a whole, McCoy was quick to defend Respawn, noting they have no part in such shenanigans.
Anyone who thinks we weren't living in the shadow of decade+ old established franchises at our reveal at E3 are as crazy as their conspiracy theories of anyone getting paid off. We've had to fight tooth and nail to have a game that anyone would even know existed, let alone be excited for and want to create coverage of. I get it that its not for everyone, but to say we're paying anyone off is downright insanity. Not to mention the height of insulting.
Considering the studio's founders were upset at the Xbox exclusivity EA set up with Microsoft, I don't see Respawn taking part in any sort of bribary just to get Titanfall noticed. On top of all that, Respawn's Vince Zampella has always been maintained a rather clandestine Twitter feed regarding the game.
Titanfall will be released for Xbox One and PC on March 11, then on 360 March 25.
Warner Bros. Interactive and DC Entertainment announced today that Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate for the 3DS and Vita will be remade for home consoles and PC. Releasing on April 1, the new Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate - Deluxe Edition will feature new high definition graphics and 5.1 sound. Billionaire backer Bruce Wayne approves, though he only consented to back the project on the condition that Blackgate isn't sold in stores. Sadly, Armature's high definition remake of their handheld title will be sold only through PSN, Xbox LIVE, Steam, and the Nintendo eShop.
Originally released for the 3DS and PS Vita on October 25 last year (November 8 for Europe), Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate was received with mixed reviews, receiving a score of 68 on Metacritic for the 3DS version and 61 for the Vita release. No content is being changed, so anyone who's played the handheld versions won't find anything new.
Blackgate Deluxe Edition will be available on PSN, Xbox LIVE, Nintendo eShop, and Steam for $19.99 starting April 1 unless the Joker decides to run away with it for an April Fool's prank.
Deluxe Edition announcement - YouTube
Today marks the arrival of Hexakill in League of Legends, as the latest Featured Gameplay Mode. Prepare for even more intense team fights, now that both sides have an extra champ. Yes, that's a 6v6 setup.
Now no one has to lane alone! Well, mid-laners might prefer to hog all the farm, which means you might have two junglers on either side duking it out for buffs, or three champs top or bot. What is this madness, destroying the very balance of Summoner's Rift? Hah, trick question; League has no balance. (That is a joke. Maybe.)
All that aside, Hexakill looks to be potentially amazing, though I'm not certain it'll match the hilarity of One for All. Come to think of it, why can't they combine both? And if one of these special modes could be released for Howling Abyss, that'd be just as grand.
Hexakill begins today, February 20, and will run until March 2.
Independent studio Abbey Games can't wait to release their next game after the very warm reception of their first title, Reus. Today Abbey's decided to reveal that next project as Renowned Explorers - International Society. Taking inspiration from titles like X-COM: Enemy Unknown and Fire Emblem, Renowned Explorers wants to mix the sense of adventure and exploration of Jules Verne with the depth and complexity of modern tactical games.
Progress in the game is as follows, according to the initial release detailing the game's basic mechanics.
- "... gather a crew of skilled explorers, banding together people with different personalities and skills."
- "... follow the most promising leads around the world, while managing time and resources efficiently."
- "When you have determined the location of a treasure, it’s time for a turn-based approach. As a Captain you will lead your crew members to explore newfound land with the help of any resources that you may find on the island. Any foes that the exotic place has to offer can be met with either ruthless combat, pleasant conversation or an interesting mix of the two."
- "After facing the challenges of a Caribbean island, Mayan temple or deep-jungle shrine, you may claim the treasure as your own and return it to your museum."
Rather than a single, long campaign like Fire Emblem or X-COM however, it seems Renowned Explorers is aiming for an extent of replayability with dynamically created content. Each game a player starts begins with a freshly created world, full of completely different characters to meet, adventure and hopefully plenty of treasure.
With each game of Renowned Explorers - International Society players will get closer to mastering the art of exploration and adventure -- hopefully. Abbey Games will have more information on their new game in the months to come. Let's hope it's as unique and enjoyable as Reus was. Abbey's certainly proven they've got the salt to make solid games. Let's keep the ball rolling (Indian Jones reference, get it?).
Click here to see more images
Scare your friends while they're playing by watching their stream
Zombie Studios' Daylight might give you a chance to unleash your inner Scarecrow, as the upcoming survival horror adventure for the PC and PS4 is looking to bring out additional scares from newer avenues including Oculus VR support and... social networking?
No, you won't be sending players spooky Instagram snaps of your lunch. Publisher Atlus reveals today that Twitch viewers hopping into Daylight streams just might be able to throw a few surprises for hapless players. Basically, Zombie Studios is entertaining the idea of letting viewers type keywords into Twitch chat to trigger special and decidedly hair-raising events straight into the game while they're watching.
Part of the fun will also be discovering just what sort of keywords will work, and what effect they will actually have in-game. The power of Twitch seems to let you manipulate the paranoia of poor players, but Zombie Studios wants to be sure that the Twitch scares are delivered responsibly. For example, keywords will all be on timers to prevent spamming and trolling.
Atlus confirms that Daylight will launch this April 8 for $14.99 USD. Meanwhile check out the batch of new screenshots below, or catch up on the rest released previously as well as the trailer... if you're ready to play in the dark!
Click here to see more images
- Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft released, win three games to get a WoW mount 
- EverQuest turns 15 this weekend and skips the cake for presents 
- Ragnarok Odyssey ACE day-one DLC revealed, try these fancy new duds 
- February NPD Number Crunch: Xbox One almost catches up to PS4 
- Steam controller receives another update, drops touchscreen for colorful buttons 
- World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor now available for pre-order, the Iron Horde awaits 
- Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate HD is headed to PC, screenshots show how it will look 
- Bound By Flame scheduled for release on May 9, live the life of a demon knight 
- Nintendo wants you to have Pokemon X or Y for free next month 
- Rumor: Final Fantasy VII remake could be a reality 
- Nintendo DS and Wii 'Wi-Fi Connection Service' discontinuation May 20, end of online play 
- Microsoft could offer targeted political ads on Xbox LIVE in the US 
- Limited Xbox One Titanfall bundle costs $499, Europe bundle drops price to Â£399.99 
- 5.3 million PlayStation 4 units sold, officially the fastest selling PlayStation console ever