The latest generation in gaming has brought with it an emphasis on sharing. Screenshots and gameplay videos can be relatively easily captured and uploaded for anyone's audience to see. It's a smart way to drive interaction --...
Xbox's flagship franchise isn't something that Microsoft's going to stray from anytime soon. Why would it? If there was any doubt about Halo's lasting appeal, it was dashed with the E3 reveal of Halo: The Master Chief Collection. Life was suddenly jolted into fans of the franchise as many that weren't on-board with the Xbox One resigned themselves to getting the console primarily to pick up the four-in-one package.
As The Master Chief Collection provides an experience that ties together the included titles, Microsoft wants to offer a means to tie together everything Halo that fans could possibly want. At the company's gamescom 2014 press briefing, The Halo Channel was introduced, and during a speed run meeting with 343 Industries, we got a better glimpse at what it'll be like.
We had a chance to take the launch line-up of Xbox games on Windows 8 for a spin this past week. These games are available for play on any Windows 8 or Windows RT device, including laptops and tablets. I played them all on a slick Asus Vivo Windows RT tablet, which was nice as its detachable keyboard and USB port for a standard Xbox controller made for a really flexible system.
Just like with Xbox 360 games, all of these Xbox Games for Windows 8 feature achievements, and more support leaderboards, co-op, and more. It's the full Xbox experience on something other than your Xbox, which is pretty neat.
There's already a fairly broad selection for launch, and many more are in the works. We've prepared a quick rundown of the launch titles in this preview for you.
Another event, another Aliens: Colonial Marines preview from yours truly. I caught my first glimpse of this interactive Aliens sequel one year ago during E3 2011, and I was suitably impressed. Of course, watching a hands-off demo is not the same as getting my hands on it, and I did just that earlier this year in Dallas.
SEGA had a new playable demo on this year's E3 show floor, with a previously unseen map and a fresher game build. You already know what I think, right?
Last week, I attended a THQ event for some of their upcoming games. Initially, I thought I was going to be looking at a game about drawing pictures. I used to go to picture-drawing school, and because of this, people frequently make me do artsy-fartsy stuff. When I arrived at the event, plans miraculously changed and I got to write about dirt bikes instead.
Hamza asked me, “How do you feel about previewing MX Vs. ATV: Alive?” I said I didn’t know what that was, and he said “It’s about driving motorcycles in the mud,” To that, I said “Ooh! Lovely!"
When Brad Borne first announced back in November that his successful Flash series Fancy Pants Adventures would be coming to consoles, a myriad of thoughts arose in my mind.
The first two games lent themselves well to the Flash medium and, despite their rather plain artistic style, garnered a tremendous amount of praise for their unique momentum-based gameplay mechanic and fun and inventive level design. The simplistic look of the game alone, however, may have been enough to question why EA chose to showcase this as part of their small but growing collection of 2D console games.
The real question on everyone's minds, though, is 'does the third installment in the Fancy Pants series provide enough of an improvement to justify a console purchase or is it just more of the same?' Hit the jump to find out.
Grasshopper Manufacture’s Suda51 is renowned for quirky, out-there games that often have something to say, even if it’s through juvenile humor. As the creator of Capcom’s seminal Resident Evil franchise, Shinji Mikami knows a thing or two about action-horror games. And as evinced by his work on the Silent Hill series, composer Akira Yamaoka is a master of creating a chilling atmosphere.
Those three creative minds have joined to bring you Shadows of the Damned, a third-person action game that offers familiar demon-killing gameplay, yet is a uniquely Suda51-style experience. In mid-February, I was treated to a twenty-minute demo of an early section of the game, and what I saw was a game with Japanese design and Western trappings.
When it comes to super heroes, the most successful are able to recreate the element of the “everyman.” While almost all of us want to be Superman, Batman, Wolverine or, uh, Mr. Fantastic (was that just me?), those guys aren't necessarily relatable. That's part of Spider-Man's charm; Peter Parker taps into the young, awkward teen in all of us. Being able to be him and do his spidery things has always been a fun part of his games, for it lets us get a little closer to that fantasy.
And that's one of the neat things about Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions -- it lets us play as not only one Spider-Man, but four different Spider-Men. There's quite a bit of variety here, and it's nice to see that Activision and Beenox are bringing something different to the different Spidey identities.
I've played around with the game for a bit, so swing after the jump for my impressions.
Unlike football or baseball, there isn't some sort of exclusivity contract at play with the National Basketball Association. This is somewhat great, as it affords us different basketball games from different companies, with titles as disparate as NBA Jam and the upcoming NBA 2K11.
As a result, this means developers have to challenge themselves a little bit more. While many gamers were pleased with NBA 2K10, many players felt there was a certain lack of polish and finesse to the title. Some felt like they would get locked into canned animations, and that the fluidity of the game just wasn't there. These were the two areas that the developers wanted to improve upon with NBA 2K11, and so they did. Then, of course, they got the exclusive use of Michael Jordan for NBA 2K11, turning this title into one of few that support the greatest basketball player of all time. It's a big deal, and they've done a lot to make a game that takes advantage of this contract. Hit the jump to see how much they've done.
Ever since Harmonix announced the keyboard for Rock Band 3, fans have been begging to get their hands on the new instrument. And for good reason -- Rock Band's music has been compensating for the lack of keyboard support with really weird guitar tracks that don't quite make much sense for the music. Having a keyboard solves this problem and opens up whole new possibilities for the types of music that we can see, hear, and play.
Having played the keyboard instrument for a good hour, I can say it plays... exactly how you would expect. However, there are some caveats to the experience, and coupled with Harmonix's new training mode, there's more going on with the instrument than meets the eye.
If there is a genre out there that has sat pretty stagnant, it’s probably the RTS. In most cases you’re put on a flat map, given a bunch of soldiers, told to build something and then told to defeat someone by some general in a room. Personal stories are out the window, and becoming invested in what is actually a war that kills thousands of people is almost impossible thanks to your God-like disconnection from the battlefield. In short, while the rest of gaming has moved onto epic storylines and truly powerful tales, the RTS, which is a genre ripe for telling epic stories, has pretty much done nothing. This isn’t even touching on the fact that aside from attempting to cram the genre onto a console, the fundamental gameplay hasn’t changed in ages.
Square Enix and Gas Powered Games are hoping to change all this with Supreme Commander 2. By bringing together Square Enix’s well known love of story driven gaming and Gas Powered’s epic RTS heritage the two are hoping to make an RTS like you’ve never seen before. And they’re actually going in to the fundamentals of how RTS function and making them work better too. I got a chance to see exactly what they are doing with SC2 last week, and now you can read all about it.
It has finally come ladies and gentleman, Emergence Day. From what every single person out in Internet Land and beyond have been saying about this game, it looks like it will crush Halo 2. Sales wise at least.
A nice selection of games are also out this week. Another SOCOM for the PS2 and PSP. Another Tony Hawk game. Guitar Hero 2 is out this week officially (I got it in last Thursday!). And hmmm, something is missing. Oh, right, not a single new GameCube game out this week. I know the Wii is right around the corner, but it's a shame to see Nintendo abandoning it so soon (They pretty much abandoned it over 4 months ago, really).
Also, from what it looks like in the email I got from my suppliers, I'm going to be able to order some PS3 and Wii stuff this week. For the PS3: the controller, Marvel Ultimate Alliance and Tony Hawk Project 8. For the Wii: Zelda Twilight Princess and Excite Truck. If I actually am able to order this stuff, expect a video where rub all of the PS3 and Wii stuff all over my crotch at the end of the week. I ain't kidding folks.
What's looking sw33t to you this week?
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FINALLY! Bully is coming out tomorrow! You know what that means right? EXACTLY! Bloggers can finally STFU about it! Well, I expect everyone will link to a major news site like GameSpot for their review impressions later on in the week and say stuff like "See! It's not a horrible demented game that'll make the children go evil!" Other major games coming out this week include the amazing looking Splinter Cell for X360, the Family Guy game that'll sell millions because it's Family Guy, and many others!
What's looking sw33t to you this week?
The quick and dirty:
X360:Splinter Cell Double Agent, Tiger Woods '07X:Justice League, Family GuyDS:Contact, Scooby Doo, Flushed Away, Justice League, Nintendogs: Dalmatian, Scooby Doo!, SpongeBob SquarePantsPSP:Ace Combat X, Family Guy, Scooby Doo!, WTFPS2:Flushed Away, Justice League, Tokobot Plus, Destroy All Humans 2, The Sims 2: Pets, Eureka Seven, Family GuyGC:Flushed Away, The Sims 2: Pets, SpongeBob SquarePantsGBA:Flushed Away, Justice League, Summon Night, SpongeBob SquarePantsPC:Battlefield 2142, AoE: The War Chiefs, The Sims 2: Pets, Microsoft Flight Simulator X, SpongeBob SquarePantsview full story + comments
Bottom line: An "M" rated LEGO Star Wars with Family Guy animation and humor.
I was invited by 2K Games today to check out their upcoming game Family Guy -- which in case you live under a rock is based on the animated television show of the same name. I'd have some video for you all, but unfortunately GameSpot has been given the first extensive gameplay video rights -- pfft, elitists.
Anyway, what I got to see were a few of the levels in action with all three characters you'll be able to control during the game. Each has their own play style and game mechanic with little tales that tie in to the loose main storyline.
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What's looking good to you this week?
Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria (PS2)
The quick and dirty:
PS2: Valkyrie 2, Live 07, NBA 2K7, NBA 07, Grim Adv, DDR Nova, Fast & Furious, Paintball, Just Cause
Xbox Live 07, NBA 2K7, Just Cause
X360: Live 07, NBA 2K7, Just Cause, XBL Camera, Import Tuner
GC: Grim Adv, Baten Kaitos, Naruto
DS: Mario VS DK 2, Bubble Bobble, Rainbow Islands, Alex Rider, Mage Knight
GBA: Alex Rider, Unfabulous
PSP: Live 07, NBA 07, Moto GP, Spectral Souls
PC: Live 07, Caesar IV, Just Causeview full story + comments
LocoRoco (PSP/Sept 5th)
What's looking good to you this week? Oh and let's take a poll: Is Loco Roco the killer ap that PSP has been needing?
Here's the quickie for this week:
PSP: Loco, Guilty Gear, Nascar 07, Poker
360: Test Drive, Xbox Live Arcade Unplugged, Scramble
PS2: Yakuza, Nascar 07, Spy Hunter
PC: DIRT, The Secret Files, Perimeter, Silent Heroes
X: Spy Hunter, Nascar 07
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