Chow Down on The Walking Dead: Season Two Trailer
As Telltale busies itself in all manner of projects — from Borderlands to Game of Thrones — they’ve still found time to continue the series that put them on the map.
Our darling Clem is growing up. Unfortunately, she’s growing up in a less than favorable circumstance: in the middle of a worldwide catastrophe where the dead walk and devour the living. Players are saddled with the privilege of navigating Clementine through the apocalypse directly. Probably not the easiest of tasks, given that even making the right choice one moment can lead to death-by-biting the next. But that’s why we love this series.
The Walking Dead: Season Two's first chapter, “All That Remains,” releases this month PC, PS3, PS Vita, Xbox 360, Ouya, and iOS. Jesus Christ, that's a widespread infection of ports not seen since the days of Tony Hawk Pro Skater sinking its teeth into every platform.
Fallout 4… LIVES!
No hoax this time, wastelanders. Thanks to leaked casting call documents, the next Fallout has been outed.
If you’re still mending the radiation burns that whole TheSurvivor2299 debacle gave you, your Skully-worthy wall of skepticism is understandable. Here’s the facts: Kotaku was sent the documents in question, which include dialogue scripts and character bios.
Unsurprisingly, the docs are not labeled “FALLOUT 4 BY BETHESDA” in neon red ink. The project is actually referred to as “The Institute.” But evidence stacks to the sky in favor of its true identity; there’s numerous references to locations either shown or named in previous Fallout's, the casting director for “The Institute” happens to be the same person that cast for Dishonored and Skyrim, and in one monologue, the franchise infamous line “War… War never changes” is uttered.
A lot of info gathered in the documents also pieces together rumblings spanning the year since Fallout 4 rumors began to kick up. You might recall news of Bethesda’s dev team doing some location scouting at Boston’s Massachusetts Institute of Technology some time back. MIT — already having played a small part in Fallout 3, though called, wouldntchaknowit?, The Institute — features as a setting for a mission.
The Commonwealth, which is the name bequeathed to the remnants of Massachusetts in series lore, was also rumored way back as the mused over setting for the next Fallout. The Commonwealth, of course, is name checked along with other series specific settings.
It’s all a pretty goddamn convincing argument for the existence of Fallout 4 (or, rather, whatever it will eventually be called). Of course Bethesda denied to comment on the leak, and until then, I cannot in good journalistic conscience say Fallout 4 is official.
The fuck am I saying? Journalists have no consciences! Fallout 4 is happening, folks. Crack open a dusty Nuka-Cola and celebrate. (In the event this is another great yank on our chain, please place your blame solely on Kotaku. See what I mean about the no conscience bit?)
MGS: Ground Zeroes Lands a Date
Today, I have the privilege of announcing that Metal Gear Solid V… is nowhere near coming out. Them’s the breaks.
But! That’s precisely where Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes comes in. Kojima Productions, knowing full well that MGSV is not even a little close over the horizon, decided to put together a playable prologue that both sets up the events of The Phantom Pain as well as indoctrinating players to Snake’s new brand of tactical espionage action.
Airdropping to both current and next-gen PlayStation and Microsoft consoles, Ground Zeroes releases March 18th, 2014. Fun bonus: PS consoles will be privy to exclusive content by way of the “Deja Vu” mission — in which you play as Classic Snake (lookit him) — while MS systems get a dosage of everybody’s favorite cyborg ninja (not named Gray Fox), Raiden, in the “Jamais Vu” bonus mission.
The Ground Zeroes precursor doesn’t feature a full blown retail price tag, there is a generational pricing discrepancy: current-gen copies will run you $29.99 whereas the spiffy next-gen editions cost $39.99.
Spike’s rebooted VGA’s, now inexplicably called VGX, has come and gone, leaving a pungent trail of awkward memories and flat jokes face down on the floor.
Seemingly slapped together in twelve minutes, the formerly televised, now streamed video game awards show ran close to three uninterrupted hours in which a strikingly disinterested Joel McHale lazily mocked gaming culture and industry guests while Game Trailers’ Geoff Keighley apologetically made “He Who Smelt It, Dealt It” faces in between fruitless spurts of holding the broken shards of professionalism together.
So, no, not much has improved over the VGA format. On the upside, there were plenty of neat game announcements and pretty footage of next-gen titles to oogle. I took the liberty of gathering them here.
Tomb Raider Reboot, Rebuilt
Crystal Dynamics, though nearly foiled by an Amazon listing, officially announced a next-gen port of Lara Croft’s 2013 re-imagining. Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition is heading to both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on January 28th.
Owning 4x the resolution of its current-gen incarnation, TR: Def’ also features a remodeled Lara and new effects technology that better simulates realistic, free-flowing hair. Just in case you were curious why the price point still rests at $59.99. Rest assured, you’re paying for a better head of hair (and all the multiplayer DLC you won’t touch).
Telltale Tells Borderlands Tales, Games Up Game of Thrones
A property chewing beast, Telltale added two new universes to its adventure game repertoire.
The first is a percolating collaboration between themselves and Texas-based think-tank Gearbox Software. Telltale’s creating a choice driven spin on the Borderlands mythos in the episodic Tales From the Borderlands. Assets by Gearbox, gameplay by Telltale.
Their next adaptation is recent rumor made titillating fact: the studio is taking on Game of Thrones. Interestingly, the game is confirmed to be based on the HBO series as opposed to the novels, meaning we can expect the visual design and narrative approach to tie-in closely with the show. No solid details to go on besides a projected 2014 release.
See the Universe, All of It in No Man’s Sky
A surprise reveal that genuinely raised everyone’s collective eyebrows impossibly above their hairlines comes from Hello Games, the indie team that brought us Joe Danger.
No Man’s Sky is a sci-fi game that ditches space marines for explorers. Your discoveries will span planets and galaxies. You’ll run into procedurally generated life reacting to organic worlds. The trailer showed us an explorer surveying life from within an ocean, hopping to the shore, jumping in his spaceship, and flying straight through the stratosphere into star craft populated space.
Stars in the distance aren’t merely lighting effects; they’re far reaching celestial bodies within their own solar systems, huge planets revolving around them (planets you can also traverse to). No Man’s Sky is a vastly ambitious next-gen undertaking that, insanely, is being developed by only four people.
And the Rest…
Broken Age [Elijah Wood featurette]
Tim Schafer returns to the adventure game (good time for it; ask Telltale). Brings with him a talented cast (Elijah Wood of Wilfred and only Wilfred fame) and a quirky art style.
Destiny [gameplay trailer]
Bungie has the “shooter” part down pat. Now they’re trying to redefine “epic.” You had me at “Gunfights on the Moon.”
The Division [snowfall trailer]
Gameplay? No, no. You’re obviously more interested in the wondrous engine being utilized to breathe life into a Tom Clancy post-apocalypse… that Tom Clancy didn’t actually write about. Still, impressive effects. Watch as the next-gen further advances the technology we use to realistically deface cop cars.
Dying Light [gameplay trailer]
I loved Dead Island, which is, according to reviews, too much praise for the open-world zombie stomper. This spiritual successor looks to approach the formula with a new, free-running centered bent. It’s zombie carnage, only faster.
Quantum Break [trailer]
I… I don’t know about this at all. I should trust Remedy Games, especially after two rad Payne's and Wake's, but this whole TV-meets-gaming crossover garbage makes me want to shrug hard enough to dislocate a shoulder. “Time is fucking broken!!!” is a premise that could go dangerously camp real bad.
Respawn introduced two new classes of Titan. I wouldn’t be able to tell you anything beyond that — I was in a trance watching hulking, anthropomorphic metal husks decimate ground troops. Which… How am I supposed to enjoy any part of this game not spent in a Titan? This game’s strength could be its metallic Achilles’ Heel.
Destiny Launches Globally on September 9th, 2014
"We first shared the design pillars of Destiny less than one year ago. We promised to redefine what players should expect from a Bungie game. We said we wanted to change the way people play games together. We set our bar high. For us, Destiny represents a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
Bungie’s “shared-world shooter” — the first title coming out of the studio’s gates since 2010’s Halo: Reach — has finally been dated. Destiny finds a home on both current and next-gen consoles, releasing for the Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, and PS4 simultaneously.
The public beta for the game begins Summer 2014, starting on Sony’s systems first.