Friday, April 26, 2013

Riptide, Soul Sacrifice, Mars War Logs and a whole lotta PR...  


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I’ve still got more Monster Hunter testimonials in the pipe, but I’m taking a short break from that tonight to talk about a few other things. Look for the rest of ‘em shortly, though!

Zinogre is having a bad hair day

Oh, and before I switch topics entirely, here’s my current MH3U status:

132 hours total, HR6 online, and completing 7-star quests in the singleplayer campaign.
Working on completing Urugaan S, Zinogre and Ivory Lagiacrus armors.
Using greatswords the majority of the time, switching off occasionally to longswords or hammers. Best sword in my box is probably the Dio Blade (slime) but I’ve got a couple that are pretty close.

And there you go! Moving on…

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Games: My review of Dead Island: Riptide just went up at @Gamecritics a day or two ago.

Our heroes thanking the QA team for their fine work.

Readers of this blog will know that I am a huge fan of the first game, and even though it had some rough edges, it was a pretty brilliant experience. Unfortunately, Riptide isn't able to match up to that first title. The new character who uses hand-to-hand combat is lots of laughs, but the game itself feels like it was slapped together with very little care and isn't nearly as immersive or as atmospheric as the original.

My next review will be Soul Sacrifice on Vita. This one has been heavily anticipated by Vita owners for quite some time, and is coming from Keiji Inafune, the creator of Mega Man. I put about nine hours into a "good" character before restarting as "evil" and putting another four or five into that one...

Nothing in the game is as cool as this looks.

Reviews are still under embargo until April 30, but those covering it have been encouraged by Sony PR to share impressions and previews. To that end, all I can say is that my current impressions are not very favorable at all.

Finally, a quick heads-up on Mars War Logs. Here's the latest trailer



I don't know a ton about it, but it's from French developers Spiders, and I was a huge fan of their work on XBLA's Faery. My review of that game is right here, and if Mars War Logs is on par with that, then I'll be a very happy camper. It's out right now on Steam, with console versions to follow.

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Book: It's been a bit of a long road lately, but I'm finally in the home stretch on my book revisions and plan to send the edited draft to my editor this weekend.

I'm hoping that there won't be any more edits requested (although realistically, there probably will be) but it will be great to get that off my plate for a little while, at least.

I started all of my writing projects when I had a lot more free time, so now that other things have piled on, I'm feeling pretty pressed on several sides. Just a couple more days and I can put a big check mark by that item on my to-do list!


********************PR/NEWS/INFO********************


Experience the complete Skyrim collection with The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim® Legendary Edition -- arriving in North America for Xbox 360, PS3, and PC on June 4 ($59.99 USD) and throughout Europe and Australia on June 7.  

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Legendary Edition includes the original critically-acclaimed game, official add-ons – Dawnguard,Hearthfire, and Dragonborn – and added features like combat cameras, mounted combat, Legendary difficulty mode for hardcore players, and Legendary skills – enabling you to master every perk and level up your skills infinitely.
 For more information on The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim® or Legendary Edition, please visit www.elderscrolls.com.

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NIS America is excited to announce that the highly anticipated Japanese RPG PlayStation®Portable title, Black Rock Shooter The Game, is now available for purchase on PlayStation®Network. The Game is widely recognized for its stunning character designs from renowned artist Huke which were given voice by the ever popular Hatsune Miku! What started as just a character design has now evolved into an explosive PlayStation®Portable title! About Black Rock Shooter The Game: 2032 AD—Earth has been ruthlessly assaulted by extraterrestrials, and nineteen years of nonstop battle now threatens the very existence of humanity. The last hope for human survival is BRS, a heroine created solely to save planet Earth; she is the ultimate battle android. But when she is awakened to end the conflict once and for all, there are only twelve human beings left on Earth left for her to protect…

For more information, visit www.nisamerica.com/blackrockshooterthegame

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All hail POTUS as Deep Silver announces today that the Commander in Chief Edition for the upcoming Saints Row IV is available as a free upgrade to pre-orders at major freedom-retailers across North America. In this ball-busting, open-world and-other-PR-words installment in the Saints Row franchise, developer Volition continues the story of the Third Street Saints by elevating their status to the highest level – the leaders of the free world.  

But the leaders of the free world are under attack from an alien invasion in the land of the free, and it’s up to you and your gang to save the world, Saints-style. To help you combat the alien terrorists you will encounter, the Commander in Chief Edition is a free upgrade for all pre-orders at participating retailers and comes fully loaded with a Screaming Eagle that fires rockets out of its talons and can invoke the “Sonic Scream” attack, leaving your enemies dazed, confused and likely scarred for life.

Additionally, if you’re going to save the world you should look good while doing it, which is why the Commander in Chief gives you a limited-edition Uncle Sam uniform, made in the US of good ‘ol A (apple pie not included.) And since you need the best [read: most ridiculously overpowered weapons ever conceived] fighting tools available, Volition and Deep Silver are giving you a stimulus package, “'Merica”,  full of incredibly astonishing firepower: flamethrowers, ultra-powered dub step guns and rocket launchers are yours for the taking. Crown thy good with brotherhood, indeed.

The Commander in Chief Edition is priced at $59.99 (console) and $49.99 (PC). The Commander in Chief Edition will be available globally. Saints Row IV launches August 20th, 2013 across North and Latin America and August 23rd worldwide. For more information please visit:


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Your friends at Klei Entertainment are happy to announce that we've released Don't Starve! As of now, we consider Don't Starve ready for general consumption, and a complete game in its own right. However, we're not quite done yet...We’ve promised six months of post-launch content updates, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do. For now, our team needs a bit of a break, so our next update will come in four weeks, on May 21st. To celebrate the release of Don't Starve, we've put together a retrospective trailer showing each update we've launched during the beta. You can get it on our Official YouTube channel below.

http://youtu.be/Fae9tlgS3w4

We're also announcing the official Don't Starve soundtrack is now available for download! Containing original instrumental music composed and arranged by Vince de Vera and Jason Garner, this soundtrack DLC has 9 tracks of game music and more presented in magnificent high-quality FLAC and MP3 formats. Also, those who pick up a copy will get new tracks as they are released in the game!

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Deep Silver today is putting the pedal to the metal with more details on the upcoming action game Ride to Hell: Route 666. In the world’s first real time tactics beat’em up, players will beef up their pack of road warriors, provide them with the right gear, and take them to the streets in a merciless battle for every mile of the legendary Route 66. The trip starts this summer, when the game is scheduled to hit the PlayStation® Store, Xbox Live® for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Steam.

Tactics are essential when up against a colorful cast of enemies. Players will be able to bark orders at their fearless gang members to bring them into the right formation on-the-fly with easy, accessible controls. Clever tactics will be rewarded, opening up enemy defenses and allowing you to get in on the action: as the leader of this lawless bunch, you can support your warriors at the front line or issue instructions from the back. Pick up and play action controls allow the players to get involved in the fight at any time. You’ll also be recruiting new members to join your gang, with each one bringing their own special abilities to a fight, from big bad bruisers to sultry medics. 

Ride to Hell: Route 666 is set within the Ride to Hell universe, a world of bare-knuckle violence, and rip-roaring motorcycles. Later this year the setting will be extended by two further titles featuring the unique and incomparable biker lifestyle; Ride to Hell: Retribution and Ride to Hell: Beatdown.
For more information about the Ride to Hell universe, please visit:


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UNWINNABLE, an industry-leading website specializing in sharp, experiential essays on videogames, film, comics and pulp culture, is today announcing PLAYABLE. This new venture will showcase small videogames developed by a variety of top indie talents and will be available on Unwinnable.com, beginning Summer 2013.

PLAYABLE is an ongoing series of short, experimental indie experiences from critically acclaimed and creative developers. Its goal is to expand and illuminate the process of what making a game is really like. Each developer will work with Team Unwinnable writers to provide background stories, essays and other content detailing the development process in order to enlighten and entertain our readership.

PLAYABLE, a long-time goal for Unwinnable.com, is the first step in a far-reaching project that will also include physical anthology collections and public exhibitions. Influenced by Pippin Barr’s browser games, PLAYABLE’s objective is to create an environment to stimulate greater conversation about videogames as a medium while establishing a vehicle to examine the mostly-unexplored craft of game development, in a way no other videogame site has ever done.

PLAYABLE will feature original games from designers across the industry, including:
RICHARD HOFMEIERCart Life, winner of the 2013 Seumas McNally Grand Prize for Best Independent Game

PIPPIN BARRLet’s Play Ancient Greek Punishment

HARRY LEEMidas, co-organizer of the Lost Levels Unconference

JAKE ELLIOTTKentucky Route Zero

ANDY SCHATZMonaco, winner of the 2010 Seumas McNally Grand Prize for Best Independent Game  

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Shin Megami Tensei IV (SMTIV) will launch as a premium RPG title for the Nintendo 3DS™ system and will include several items to aid Samurai as they serve the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado by battling hordes of demons. In addition to being a fully voiced title that takes advantage of the 3DS system's 3D and StreetPass™ functionalities, Shin Megami Tensei IV will include: 
Strategy & Design Book - Produced by Prima Games, longtime publishers of video game strategy content, and packed with walkthroughs, charts, maps, tips, and more, this official starter strategy guide will give the newly selected Samurai a distinct advantage as they begin their journey through the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado and beyond.  The design side of the book will feature full-color pages of artwork ranging from concept art to in-game pieces to never-used designs from new Shin Megami Tensei series character designer, Masayuki Doi.

Shin Megami Tensei Music Collection - Offering a collection of tracks specially selected from across the 20-plus-year history of the Shin Megami Tensei series, this CD presents the series' musical history highlights from the ethereal atmospheric music to the classic power-guitar anthems. It also includes a special recording exclusive to the Music Collection CD.   
Collectible Slipcase Packaging - SMTIV will come in a deluxe-sized slipcase package featuring full-color key art designed by Masayuki Doi and depicting the divergent paths of law and chaos between which Samurai must travel and make their choices knowing of the potential foes and allies that lay on either side.
 All bonus collectors' items are limited to the first printing of SMTIV; subsequent printings will only include the SMTIV game.

Shin Megami Tensei IV will be exclusive to the Nintendo 3DS system and sold as a premium title beginning this summer. The game is rated M for Mature by the ESRB. More details will be revealed in the future, with updates on the official SMTIV website at http://www.atlus.com/smt4

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505 Games, a global publisher of video games, today announced that the block-building smash hit Terraria is headed to the PlayStation®Vita system (PS Vita). In development by Engine Software, Terraria for PS Vita will be available in summer 2013.

Originally released in 2011 for the PC by creator/developer Andrew Spinks' Re-logic studio, Terraria has received universal, critical acclaim and over 2 million "Terrarians" have struck out on their own adventures and fallen for it's mix of side-scrolling, action-adventure gaming and emphasis on crafting and exploration.
For all the latest news and updates on all things Terraria head over to https://www.facebook.com/TerrariaOfficial or https://twitter.com/Terraria_Logic.

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Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. today announced the next chapter in the METAL GEAR SOLID franchise, METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN, will be released on the Sony PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. To reinforce the announcement and address all the questions fans have been asking all year, Kojima Productions unveiled a brand new trailer for the new title at this year's Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco.

First unveiled in METAL GEAR SOLID: PEACE WALKER, the new METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN trailer shows the fall of Mother Base and provides visual hints that unveil the connection between METAL GEAR SOLID: GROUND ZEROES and METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN. The trailer also showcases the FOX Engine's exceptional level of visual quality with seamless integration of gameplay and cut scenes.For the newly released METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN trailer, please make sure to visit: www.metalgearsolid.com.

METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN will be released on the Sony PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. For more information on METAL GEAR SOLID V: THE PHANTOM PAIN, please visit: www.konami.com

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It's here! After lots of packaging, tweaking, and testing, we're rolling out the new Torchlight editor - GUTS. In this action-packed update we have some important information on what exactly GUTS is and how it can work for you. You might want to bookmark this page for later. Ready? Here we go!

Modding in Torchlight 2

Torchlight 2 now fully supports Steam Workshop. A new launcher synchronizes any mods you have subscribed to,  and lets you customize their activation state and loading priority. In addition, when playing Internet games in the lobby, you will be able to filter modded games by mod combination, and with a single button click, subscribe to those mods. Torchlight 2 will then restart, synchronize them, and activate them before returning you to the game.

When playing modded games, you can view your mod history, any previously played mods, and the impact disabling mods may have on your character.

We've tried to make the process as seamless as possible, with a focus on allowing modded multiplayer games with a minimum of fuss.

GUTS

GUTS is our in-house development tool, now fully integrated with Steam Workshop. You can publish directly to Steam Workshop when you compile your mod, making it available immediately for others to play.

We've also added a special tool to GUTS designed to convert pre-GUTS mods into the official mod format, with an eye toward making the transition much easier for our ambitious early modders.

New to modding? Here's how to get started with GUTS - the Torchlight Editor wiki that we've been creating. You will definitely want to bookmark this resource! http://docs.runicgames.com/wiki/Getting_Started

New content for everyone

We've been working on lots of new content! Here is a taste of what awaits you ...

*The NetherRealm tileset - new NetherRealm dungeons can be found via portals throughout the world
*New Monsters
*New armor sets
*New weapons
*New pets - including the Headcrab!
*New endgame map content
*Some additional new dungeons in New Game plus modes in large overworld area

Click here for the complete patch notes. http://forums.runicgames.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=54098

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Persona 2: Eternal Punishment is now available for download on the PlayStation®Network for PlayStation®3, PlayStation®Vita, and PlayStation®Portable.  Presented as a parallel world to the events that unfolded in Persona®2: Innocent Sin, Persona 2:  Eternal Punishment delivers all the gameplay and action from the original Eternal Punishment title, delivering the missing chapter to fans to complete the full Persona experience.  The title is priced at $9.99.

Set in the metropolis of Sumaru City, Eternal Punishment takes place after the events of Innocent Sin, however exists as a separate story unrelated to Innocent Sin.  Players control a party of oddballs brought together by disturbing events in Sumaru City: teen-focused magazine reporter Maya Amano, her unlucky-in-love boxer friend Ulala Serizawa, the upright police detective Katsuya Suou, and a shady Taiwanese fixer known as "Baofu."  Together, the four characters become involved in the investigation of a serial killer known as the "Joker", and must unravel the mystery of the Joker Curse.

As in the other Persona titles, players have the option to fight demons encountered or negotiate with them to earn items, assistance, or their Arcana cards in order to fuse new Personas and gain access to more powerful attacks.  Additionally the game incorporates a rumor system, where players collect and exchange rumors throughout the game. Rumors taken to the Kuzunoha Detective Agency can be spread for a fee, changing the dynamic of the gameplay to alter storefronts and other gameplay elements.  
   
Persona 2: Eternal Punishment is rated M for Mature.  
  
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Independent developer NeocoreGames revealed today a spectacular new gameplay trailer and screenshots for The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing, demonstrating the much anticipated Rage and Power-up System, whereby players have the ability to tailor skills on the spot. Whether it is killing foes instantly or freezing them in place, players have an enormous selection of abilities to take advantage of while they combat twisted creatures born in secret laboratories.

Watch or download the trailer and check out the latest screenshots here.

Enabling players to have up to three active skill modifiers, called Power-ups, The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing delivers an abundant amount of pathways to follow within legendary monster hunter Van Helsing’s skilltree. By charging up the power-ups and utilizing Rage points collected from impressive feats, players are capable of taking down the most gruesome bosses and mythical beasts.

Read more about the Rage and Power-up System at Neocore’s active developer blog, here.

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing is a gothic-noir steampunk action-RPG that is set to release on Windows®PC this spring and Xbox LIVE® Arcade for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft later this year. Players experience fierce battles with familiar supernatural foes all within a dark storyline influenced by Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

For more on The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing, read the team’s DevBlog, ‘Like’ the game on Facebook, and follow it on Twitter.

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