Everybody Wants to Rule the World in Assassin’s Creed Unity
Four player co-op. Improved mobility. Reworked engine. Eagles.
Creed’s first full next-gen affair seems to have it all. Even a magnificently atmospheric Tears for Fears cover overlaid this stunning (though pre-rendered) trailer.
The masses are quick to lambaste a franchise that rushes out to the Holiday season every year, but I cut Assassin’s Creed some slack because Ubisoft has always experimented with its formula in each major release. The results aren’t always terrific (remember willfully skipping that tower defense mini-game in Revelations?), yet their tenacity has lent to growing and shaping AC into a tightly wound ball of playability and clever ideas.
They had my rapt attention when fellow online players joined lead Arno in hunting down their unknowing prey in yesterday’s gameplay reveal. If you know me, you know competitive multiplayer isn’t always my bag — I’m especially averse to it in third-person games — so a co-op offering is a cup o’ tea I cannot pass up.
Be a buddy and help your friends incite a revolution when Assassin’s Creed Unity releases October 28th, 2014.
Toasty! NetherRealm Announces Mortal Kombat X!
After weeks of teasing from series ko-kreator, Ed Boon, and an indirect leak from a Sutherland of all places, today brings us the official reveal of Mortal Kombat X.
While targeted consoles haven’t been named, the tag to go along with the trailer states the sequel is “fueled by next-gen technology” to ”create an unprecedented Kombat experience” (To clear up any confusion, they meant to put “kreate”).
In a raw display of brutality and power between franchise poster-ninjas, Sub-Zero and Scorpion, the trailer shows off features heralded into 2011’s superb reboot including the bone-breaking X-Ray attacks.
More environmental destruction (a la Injustice) is seen, where opponents can be smashed about stages as well as break off pieces of a level, like a tree branch, and wielded as cudgels. Personal weapons — first introduced in MK4 — seemingly make a return.
Mortal Kombat X is slated for 2015. Say it with me now: IT HAS BEGUN.
"No More Hope. No More Batman" — First Akrham Knight Gameplay Trailer
The final chapter in Rocksteady’s Dark Knight video game trilogy approaches. The Scarecrow’s impending threat of fear-gassing Gotham has trapped the Batman in a city populated by madmen. Worse — because it can and will always get worse for the Caped Crusader — there’s a new masked menace in town calling himself “The Arkham Knight,” and he’s skilled enough and driven enough to match the Bat blow for blow.
Bad for Batman, fantastic for us. A next-gen only affair, Rocksteady doesn’t wish to go out quietly into the night, building a stunningly rendered, jaw-dropping last hurrah for the best superhero series in gaming. Hopefully it’s as good as it looks, because it looks too damn good.
Wolfenstein: The New Order Dated, Trailered, and Slapped with Doom 4 Beta
The Bethesda backed, MachineGames developed reboot of id’s famed Nahtzi killin’ vidja game officially has itself a date.
Wolfenstein: The New Order, which sees B.J. “Blast-to-Bits” Blazkowicz launching a counter-offensive against the Nazi force that’s conquered the free world since winning World War II (History 101 Spoiler: didn’t actually happen), will release May 20th on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and the Xbox Uno.
Here’s the kicker: pre-ordering a copy of the game gains you beta access to the next Doom… Which, until this point, has been all quiet on the western front. Bethesda didn’t care to specify what the beta entailed — though its existence seems to strongly suggest Doom 4 is being fitted with some kind of multiplayer.
All that’s clear is that new copies of Wolfenstein will include a voucher good for whenever they decide to open the beta.
I suspect a lot of you couldn’t have cared less about The New Order before hearing that bit of news, but the above trailer had enough visual flair, quality voice work, and black humor to catch my attention. But if the game’s anywhere in the same state it was when I got a hands-on back at last year’s QuakeCon, the gameplay’s going to need some screws tightened before its launch in May.
Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark Pits Bay’s Bots vs. Cybertron's Bots… For Some Reason
Today’s NYC Toy Fair saw Activision and Hasbro reveal the next video game foray in store for everyone’s favorite robots — no, not Jaegers; how dare you? — the Transformers. But this follow up to 2012’s Fall of Cybertron may, uh, surprise you in one very unexpected way.
Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark depicts a clash between two worlds. The first being the Gen 1 inspired mythos introduced to us in High Moon’s third-person shooter War for Cybertron; the second being Michael “EXPLOSION” Bay’s divisive silver screen universe.
If you share my opinion on Bay’s trilogy (soon to be extended into a quadrilogy), the discomfort you’re experiencing is your disappointment, incredibly, blossoming into physical pain.
Don’t rub your bruises yet, friend-o. The blows aim lower: High Moon Studios is not handling development duties on this installment. Rather, Edge of Reality, a dev most known for banking on successful ports (including Mass Effect for PS3 and a litter of Tony Hawk's), is tasked with merging the Cybertron series and Bay's GMC-dominated franchise. I call it CyberBay.
Don’t get me wrong here. High Moon’s resume hasn’t gone without blemish. They even committed a virtual crime against the Autobots when they tried adapting Dark of the Moon, the result of which being catastrophically mundane. But their redemption in Fall of Cybertron was so triumphant, so marvelously entertaining, it became instantly impossible to see another studio roll out Gears-esque, mechanical slaughter quite like High Moon did.
I’ve nothing but well wishes to Edge of Reality, though. I may not love the concept, but I’m definitely for the proposed stat progression that spills across both single and multiplayer. And the game’s Extinction Mode — a new play on the nearing-ancient Horde Mode — means there’s a good chance replay value is to be had long after you complete the CyberBay campaign. So long as they respect the gameplay that made High Moon’s games work, that is.
Rise of the Dark Spark will be extremely hard to avoid upon release since it’ll grace the PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Commodore 64, Wii U, and the 3DS. I’ll leave it up to you, dear reader, to figure out which one of those is a Decepticon lie.
New Titanfall Gameplay Makes the Last Seven Years of FPS’s Look Tame
If your address places you snugly beneath a rock, I can understand your confusion as to why the term ‘Titanfall' has the gaming populace shitting mech proportioned bricks. Watching all ten minutes of this video will bring you right up to speed and have you shitting bricks with the best of 'em.
This footage makes the countless matches of Call of Duty and Halo I’ve waged over the last seven years look about as exciting as your dentist’s just-as-old magazine collection (featuring choice issues of Dentistry Today and the People that covered Brad and Jennifer’s separation). Watching the player above jet up to building’s side, kick off, and finally land on a rooftop before spraying bullets into the opposition from his split-second vantage point is what I’ve been craving — yearning — from next-gen.
There is much hype keeping this game afloat. But this is shaping up to be one of those rare, miraculous moments in video games where the hype is, dare I utter it, well deserved. March 11th, Xbox One and PC people. March 11th.
Not soon enough? I like you. Register for the Titanfall beta here. Beta opens Friday, final invites will be doled out by Feb. 17th.
Find Hell with Evolve's Debut Trailer
Actual quote from a 2K staffer: “Everyone that gets their hands on it, falls in love with it.”
The formula’s simple. Four hunters versus one beast. The particulars are percolating: each hunter is its own unique class, playing a role in a, hopefully, well oiled machine. The hunted, while outnumbered, is a hulking, evolving beast completely at home in the wild.
Turtle Rock wants to capture that same catching playability that made their previous effort, the original Left 4 Dead, such an infectious hit. If 2K’s word and early press reports are to be believed, they might not be too far off. Right beside Destiny and Titanfall, the next-generation may have found a new poster boy.
The trailer above ain’t exactly gameplay, unfortunately, but is rendered using the in-game engine. To make up for this, an irresistibly bitching cover of Danzig’s “Mother” — as performed by folk rock starlet Lissie — underscores the trailer. I can’t stop listening to it. I don’t quite understand why our next-gen trailers are populated by modern, female vocalized covers of ‘90’s songs, but if it continues, I won’t need to.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Trailer Is Spectacularly Un-amazing
So, here, I present to you the second official trailer for Beenox’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The first was a teaser trailer, which is a lot like someone slapping a slice of hot pizza out of your hand just as you’re bringing it to your mouth, so it doesn’t count in my book.
Let me power through some preamble: Spider-Man’s my favorite superhero, bar none. Beenox, despite some blemishes (I mean Edge of Time), has delivered on some pretty entertaining Spidey outings.
Though not flawless, their original Amazing Spider-Man movie tie-in was fantastic fun; webslinging was awesome, the Web Rush system worked in a snap, the combat was… well, mediocre. But the game got a lot right. Open-world and Spider-Man is a winning combo hard to stray from. It was goddamned ridiculous that you were literally able to sweep New York City clean of crime in the endgame — leaving you with jack and shit to do besides use the game as a webslinging simulator — but still, fond spot for the effort.
But this trailer for ASM2 is just off somehow. The graphics are unpleasant, the lighting is murky, and Spidey moves around as if someone swapped his skeleton for a wire hanger. The footage just zapped my excitement for the game. I didn’t envision Spidey’s first swing onto next-gen to look this woefully unpolished, especially for a game that’s only got a few months before it’s in the can.
The whole “Alpha-Beard Kraven trains Pete to be a hunter” bit; that could work. It doesn’t restrict the game to the film’s plot and is a fun little play on an old rivalry. In theory, there’s hope here. Beenox hasn’t put out anything truly dismal under the Spider-Man brand yet. Yet. I’ll keep an eye on it for you, web-heads.
Alien: Isolation Officially Revealed
I’ve been following every space scrap of news on this project for a while now — Alien and its film progeny, Jimmy Cameron’s opus in particular, being my favorite series in the history of the silver screen — but it’s refreshing to have the loading bay doors officially blown off of Alien: Isolation.
Though the game is set in the first-person, don’t expect Isolation to be yet another Hoo-rah-tastic corridor shooter as hollow as the sound of pulse rifle fire. Creative Assembly is seeking to create the Alien game no other developer has tried before: a methodically paced, suffocatingly atmospheric love letter to the bump-in-the-dark horror Ridley Scott famously put to film back in 1979.
Fifteen years after the Nostromo vanished from the star map, Amanda Ripley finds herself aboard the Sevastopol Station, the floating husk of a former trading port. The Company says she may find an answer to her mother’s disappearance there. What she does find is one ruthless, near unstoppable killing machine of an extraterrestrial that will stalk her, find her, and end her unpleasantly unless she uses her wits and what little supplies she can scrounge up to survive. Like mother, like daughter.
As much as I’d love for a team of perfect fans to crack Aliens' formula and deliver a riveting action game instead of a derivative train wreck, I'm glad we're not gagging on another space marine shooter. The films are, and always have been, firmly rooted in horror. It's time video games stopped treating xenomorphs as canon fodder, having you blast apart hordes of them. It's time to be afraid of them again.
Alien: Isolation, expected for late this year, is releasing for PC, PS3, 360, PS4, and Xbox One.
Dynasty Warriors and The Legend of Zelda Combine; Yes, Seriously
A new Nintendo Direct aired today and with it came tons of updates on the company’s beloved franchises.
Luigi apparently just got his doctorate, now the star of Dr. Luigi. Everybody’s favorite shoe-wearing dinosaur bought some more real estate in Yoshi’s New Island. Rosalina stepped into the arena of Smash Bros. 4 despite my not knowing who the hell Rosalina is.
But all of these announcements paled in comparison to the debut of the greatest video game crossover (that no one had the wits nor gall to even ask for in the first place) ever. Ladies, gentlemen, and variations thereupon: meet Hyrule Warriors, the peanut buttercup mixing of Tecmo Koei’s Dynasty Warriors and Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda.
Now I don’t know what you stand for and I haven’t any estimation of your moral compass, but I stand for what’s right, and this game feels too fucking right. Hyrule Warriors isn’t the first crossover in Tecmo’s stable of single button hack n’ slashers — Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is on its third entry while One Piece: Pirate Warriors recently dropped its second — but it is the first game where the looped music likely won’t make you slam your controller into your eardrum.
Nintendo wishes to assure fans that the tentatively named Hyrule Warriors is a separate title from the previously mentioned “Next Zelda" being developed for Wii U; it’s a collaboration with Tecmo Koei, utilizing their series’ "tried and true" combat (see: "flogged and fatigued") with familiar friendlies and enemies alike from Zelda lore.
I have a soft spot for Dynasty Warriors tenderer than under cooked chicken (God, I’m horrible at similes). It’s unrepentant, mindlessly repetitive action. Which is precisely why I love it. Now chock full of Zelda goodness? This shall be my stupidest, yet foremost reason for wanting a Wii U.
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.
Naughty Dog Lowdown - Uncharted PS4 + The Last of Us Story DLC
The famed Santa Monica based developer came at us last night with updates on two of its most coveted, Sony exclusive IP’s. Let’s dig into the less enigmatic of the two announcements:
Undoubtedly my favorite title of the year, the third-person apocalyptic heartbreak simulator, The Last of Us, has had story DLC quietly in the works over the last several months. Now we finally know the name: Left Behind.
A prequel to Joel and Ellie’s giraffe filled adventure, Left Behind focuses on Ellie and Riley (first depicted in the comic American Dreams), a rebellious teen whom Ellie befriends within the military operated boarding school she attends. Spoiler alert: Expect your emotions to be damaged.
Priced at $14.99, Left Behind will hit PSN early 2014. Watch the teaser trailer hereabouts (light on the “trailer,” thick on the “teaser”).
And now for something cryptic. Naughty Dog announced a new Uncharted game! Annnnd… That’s it. ND swears there’s revealing hints to be found in this trailer, but it takes a better fan than I to be able to spot the bastards.
What’s certain is that it’s setting course exclusively for the PlayStation 4. What’s uncertain is everything else: Is Nathan Drake back? What’s the official title? When does it take place? Is the love of my virtual life Elena back?
Nothing official has been plotted, though rumors are already suggesting Sir Francis Drake may be the protagonist, making this Uncharted a period piece. More on this diddy as it develops, folks.
How ghoulishly fitting we should receive a brand new Lords of Shadow 2 trailer on Halloween. ‘Course, it’d be more fitting if that game were actually coming out today. Gabriel may be able to wait out centuries in his castle keep, but my lack of immortality means I get fidgety waiting in the drive-thru.
Brief as it is, we witness our man Gabriel curse the God he once devoted his life and work to. No longer a man, he prefers to be addressed as ‘The Dragon,’ or Dracul, pledging to forever be a torn sticking out the Almighty’s side. So, yeah, the dude’s been making some serious life changes between the first and second game.
To my European comrades out there, let it be known that Lords of Shadow 2 has itself a Collector’s Edition heading to your side of the world. ‘Dracula’s Tomb Premium Edition’ comes with, get this, Dracula’s tomb as a special case to house its goodies which include a hardcover art book, four badass little figurines (one of them being the mysterious, bearded Belmont seen in the trailers), and a steelbox case for your copy of the game.
Only 30,000 are being released, so get up on those pre-orders. No word from Konami if North America is receiving a similar tomb of badassery. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 releases Feb. 25th in the states and Feb, 28th in the UK.
Clem is the Star of The Walking Dead: Season Two
Telltale has gone on record to confirm Clementine, your adolescent companion and inarguably the emotional anchor of Season One, is the playable lead in The Walking Dead: Season Two.
We pick up months after the incredibly somber, soul mincing events of Season One. Clem has been travelling by her lonesome, fending against the undead in the ruins of our cities as well as the living left ruined by them.
In her search for safety, Telltale promises “you will be tested by situations and dilemmas” that measure your morality just as much as your will to survive. Just when you thought it was safe to play a video game without having your emotions strung through the ringer.
The choice driven gameplay that brought the first season critical acclaim returns, and the narrative will be affected from the get-go by choices made both in Season One and the short expansion 400 Days. I’m glad Telltale seems to be locking the story into one perspective instead of several like in 400 Days, but given the amount of preamble the DLC’s cast received, count on them to return in Season Two in some sort of meaningful role.
The Walking Dead: Season Two will encompass another run of five episodes to be released across 2014 for PC, Xbox 360, PS3, and iOS. Missed out on TWD up until now? What in the handless Rick is wrong with you? Catch up on all of Season One plus 400 Days once The Walking Dead: Game of the Year Edition drops on November 11th.