Blog archive

Sunday, 27 September 2020

How I made the most out of a terrible, terrible summer

[TheBlondeBass put together a game jam and invited the Destructoid community to join him for the journey. After all the smoke had settled, he wrote this blog detailing his experience and even shared a link to the finished product, along with the page for the other entries as well! Be sure to check them all out and let these fine folks know what you think! - Kevin

2020's been a crummy year for just about everyone. Unless your name rhymes with Beff Jezos, you've probably felt it too. The stress of a situation of which we feel like we have little control over, or maybe of not knowing if your job is safe. The loneliness of not seeing your friends in person, while losing the motivation to do so online. It all around sucks to spend that much time in one's apartment, worrying about the world.

Due to a variety of factors I won't get into, the year has affected me a lot. I've been tired, unhappy, anxious, and irritable. The situation was showing no signs of improvement back in May, and I needed something to change. I needed something, other than work, to think about. Something like...

How I made the most out of a terrible, terrible summer screenshot

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Review: Mafia: Definitive Edition

This story takes place a long time ago and most video games don't age like fine wine. The rare, great ones do but most don't. The ones that are merely good have a shelf life before they turn. Playing an open-world shooter from 2002 leaves about the same taste in your mouth as chewing the bubblegum that came with 1950s baseball cards.

Mafia: Definitive Edition is a prime example of how those good games can have great foundations. A lot of all-timers like Final Fantasy VII, Link's Awakening, and Resident Evil 2 have gotten the remake treatment lately, and no one is surprised when they're excellent the second time 'round. Mafia, which had to live in GTA III's shadow back in 2002, gets its first chance to be truly excellent in 2020. 

Review: Mafia: Definitive Edition screenshot

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Review: WWE 2K Battlegrounds

For the first time since the WWE series of games was handed off to 2K Sports, they've released something drastically different on consoles from the annualized and borderline sim-like WWE 2K series.

WWE 2K Battlegrounds features a wide cast of WWE superstars new and old, throwing each other dozens of feet into the air, into cars, and into alligators, all with over-the-top power-ups and abilities. This is anything but a simulation of modern professional wrestling.

All of that spectacle wears off quickly, though. Battlegrounds is incredibly shallow in regards to gameplay, and the overall progression is downright mind-numbing.

Review: WWE 2K Battlegrounds screenshot

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Head out on the highway with Arcade Archives' Burnin' Rubber

Retro publishers are getting in gear for this week's addition to the Arcade Archives collection. Data East's buggy-bumping Burnin' Rubber is now available to download on Nintendo Switch.

Released in Japanese arcades back in 1982, Burnin' Rubber was one of numerous top-down racers vying for the quarters of the coin-op crowd back in the golden age of gaming. Players engage in high-speed races against a pack of copy-paste competitors, ramming their opposition off-road while utilising the buggy's leap ability (Yeah, sure, why not?) to get out of sticky situations.

Burnin' Rubber would eventually arrive in the west, where it would ported to the NES, Intellivision and other home platforms under its better-known title of Bump 'n' Jump. You can check out the game in action in the video below, courtesy of YouTuber Janet.

Burnin' Rubber is available to download now on Nintendo Switch, priced at around $8.

Head out on the highway with Arcade Archives' Burnin' Rubber screenshot

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Review: Hotshot Racing

The racing game scene was once a far more colorful place. At any time you could be driving a Volkswagen Beetle through Jurassic Park or going up impossible climbs in your futuristic turbo bike. The early 3D era was, after all, a time of experimentation, but as the market progressed, and all the acids and bases were boiled down, we were left with a pretty monotone genre. No, I don't know anything about chemistry.

Today's racing market is dominated by racing simulators; your Gran Turismos, Project Cars, Need for Speeds. Arcade-style racing games still exist, but even high-profile franchises have waned out of existence, such as Burnout and Motorstorm. It's a bleak time to be an arcade racer, stuck somewhere between the success of Mario Kart and Forza. It's times like these we turn to the indie market to deliver us back to an era where we struggled to pass those checkpoints. It's time for games like Hotshot Racing.

Review: Hotshot Racing screenshot

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Review: Serious Sam 4

I still can't believe that the original Serious Sam came out nearly 20 years ago.

Since then Croteam has broken away from their reputation as "the Serious Sam studio" a bit, having given us the universally acclaimed Talos Principle. They aren't ready to let go of Sam just yet, though.

Review: Serious Sam 4 screenshot

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New CGI movie Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness coming to Netflix in 2021

A since-removed tweet from the Portuguese Netflix Twitter account has revealed that a brand new Resident Evil CGI movie is in the works, and will premier on the streaming service in 2021.

Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness will star two of the survival horror franchise's most beloved protagonists, Claire Redfield and Leon S. Kennedy. The Resident Evil 2 superstars will reunite for what appears to be an all-new adventure. While there are currently no plot details to speak of, I'm sure fans can expect a deadly adventure packed with conspiracy, intrigue, and more than a few nightmare-inducing monsters.

A short teaser trailer for Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness has been unofficially re-uploaded by Twitter user @ContextEvil. You can check out the action right here.

In other recent Resident Evil news, publisher Capcom has suggested that the next video game entry in the series, Resident Evil Village, could potentially arrive on current-gen consoles PS4 and Xbox One, though the team stopped short of guaranteeing this possibility.

New CGI movie Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness coming to Netflix in 2021 screenshot



Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires announced for PC and current/next-gen consoles

Koei Tecmo has announced the next game in the expansive musou series Dynasty Warriors. As revealed at Tokyo Game Show this weekend, Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires is currently in development for PC, as well as current and next-gen console platforms. It is expected to release in 2021.

Described as an evolution of typical DW warfare, Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires eschews its predecessor's open-world approach for more strategic gameplay. Players will use violence, diplomacy, and careful planning in perfect balance in order to capture or ally with armies and kingdoms throughout the land, growing in dominance as their power and influence spreads throughout ancient China.

Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires will launch in 2021 on PS4, PS5, PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Nintendo Switch. You can check out a teaser trailer for the new game below.

Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires announced for PC and current/next-gen consoles screenshot

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Cblogs of 9/19 to 9/25/2020: Timespinner, Ghost of Tsushima, and Zelda delays

Cblogs Recap: Week 39

-Black Red Gaming continues the ranking of the Saints Row games with this blog about Agents of Mayhem.

-BlackAdler reviews Timespinner on the PC.

-Council of the Lost discusses the differences between two roles in PUBG in a comprehensive fashion.

-BRAVO F1VE reviews Ghost of Tsushima.

-TheBlondeBass continues highlighting games with heart core with a blog focusing on Guilty Gear Xrd.

-Shoggoth2588 responds to this month's Band of Bloggers prompt about delayed games with a blog about Nintendo's perpetually delayed series, The Legend of Zelda.

-PhilsPhindings discusses the similarities between the soundtrack of Xenogears and several popular music tracks.

-PhilsPhindings discusses the similarities between the soundtrack of Punch-Out! and the music of Mahlon Merrick.

-ChronoLynxx is back with another TGIF open forum for community discussions.

Cblogs of 9/19 to 9/25/2020: Timespinner, Ghost of Tsushima, and Zelda delays screenshot

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Megaton Musashi's Tokyo Game Show trailer gives us our best look at the game yet

Megaton Musashi was announced so long ago, it was originally only revealed to be coming to Nintendo 3DS. For reasons only developer Level-5 knows, it kept getting pushed back and now is set to arrive on Switch and PlayStation 4. Since it was announced four years ago, we really haven't got a good look at what the game is, but that changed today when Level-5 dropped an extensive trailer for it at Tokyo Game Show 2020.

Megaton Musashi's Tokyo Game Show trailer gives us our best look at the game yet screenshot

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Deathsmiles I & II announced for PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch

2020 has certainly been a big year for the return of classic shmups. And the party is set to continue with City Connection's recent announcement that Cave anime shooters Deathsmiles I & II are set to make a grand return on PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch next year.

Deathsmiles I & II announced for PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch screenshot

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Have you ever forgotten how to play a video game?

A few years ago, I was visiting my brother's family when my oldest nephew invited me to play a game of Madden. "Oh," I thought, "your father and I used to play this all the time." So I joined him for a game of football only to have him shut his PS4 off less than two quarters in as he had trounced me well enough to invoke the mercy rule. It turns out, when I don't play sports games, I completely forget how they work.

That's just one of the topics on this episode of Podtoid. CJ, Occams, Dan, and Charlotte talk forgetting games, WWE Battlegrounds, Final Fantasy X, 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim, Pathfinder: Kingmaker, and the PlayStation 5 date and price reveal. All that, plus even the trees are out to get you in Australia, on Podtoid Episode 459.

Have you ever forgotten how to play a video game? screenshot

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The theme song for Swery's The Good Life sounds like it fell out of an episode of Dawson's Creek

Development on the Fig-failure-turned-Kickstarter-success The Good Life is humming along toward its eventual release on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Switch. In the latest update on the title, producer Swery gave us a listen to the official theme song for the title.  Recent releases from the Deadly Premonition creator have featured some amazing soundtracks with excellent original songs, and "The Good Life" from The Bad Lives appears to be no exception.

The theme song for Swery's The Good Life sounds like it fell out of an episode of Dawson's Creek screenshot

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Sega teases new 'Virtua Fighter x Esports' project

As part of the ongoing Tokyo Game Show festivities, Sega has released a video teasing a brand new project in line with its legendary fighting series, Virtua Fighter. However, the publisher has since remained tight-lipped on what the project actually is.

The one-minute teaser begins with the classic Virtua Fighter "Press Start" sound effect, before seguing into footage of previous VF tournaments, as players go head-to-head on the awesome one-vs-one fighter. The video ends with poster boy Akira stood with his back to the camera, followed by the simple message "Virtua Fighter x Esports".

Sega teases new 'Virtua Fighter x Esports' project screenshot

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New Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity trailer unites the four Champions from Breath of the Wild

The roster of the highly anticipated Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is on the grow. During the Koei Tecmo livestream on the title at Tokyo Game Show, fans were given their first look at young Impa in action and the developers dropped a new trailer focusing on the four Champions from Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

New Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity trailer unites the four Champions from Breath of the Wild screenshot

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Atelier Ryza 2 is coming to PS5 as well

The main draw of Koei Tecmo's Tokyo Game Show 2020 presentation may be Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, but its showcase of the upcoming Atelier Ryza 2: Lost Legends & the Secret Fairy is no slouch either. The presenters gave viewers look at some extensive gameplay footage for the title, and it's gorgeous. I'm sure it'll look just fine on Nintendo Switch, which is where I have the original game, but if you want it on the most powerful hardware available, Koei Tecmo confirmed the title is coming to PlayStation 5 in addition to the already announced PS4 version.

Atelier Ryza 2 is coming to PS5 as well screenshot

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Whatcha been playing this week, Destructoid?

Lordy, it's been a week. I hope it's been a better one for you. But before we get down to the business of game talk, I have to thank all y'all. Last week's "Whatcha Been Playin'" post got a staggering 426 comments, which I believe is a new record for this weekly community get-together. This must be how the WWE felt when they pretended to draw 93,173 people for Wrestlemania III. Thanks a ton to all of our community for taking a few seconds out of your weekends to interact with us and share a little bit of your lives.

This week has once again seen me a little too busy to finish up Remedy's Control, (at this rate I'll be amazed if I have it finished by Halloween), as I have spent most of my time either working on site, keeping an eye on TGS, or visiting the local sawbones. Nevertheless, there are many excellent video game titles out there, as well as some other major releases on the horizon. How in the blue hell I'm ever going to get through everything - or even just some things - is anybody's guess.

But that doesn't mean you can't get through everything. In fact, it seems that most of you already have. So jump into the comments below and fill us in on what you've been playing this past week, or have lined up for your weekend. Whether something old, something new, something borrowed, or something... erm... blue? (Senran Kagura?) share your current gaming obsessions with us. Then go and re-watch Savage vs. Steamboat.

Have a safe and pleasant weekend, from all of us at Destructoid.

Whatcha been playing this week, Destructoid? screenshot



The original Gal Gun is finally coming west on Switch, Xbox One, and PC

Western audiences may have got their first taste of Gal*Gun with Gal*Gun: Double Peace, but the roots of the titillating series go all the way back to the Xbox 360 with its Japanese-exclusive debut. Even as its sequels found their way to audiences worldwide, that original never left Japan. Next year, however, that'll change with Gal*Gun Returns.

From Inti Creates, this remake of the original title will feature improved graphics, more than 250 illustrations, voice acting for every girl in the game, all the DLC from the original release, new CGs, multiplayer Doki Doki mode, and underwear out the wazoo.

The original Gal Gun is finally coming west on Switch, Xbox One, and PC screenshot

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Contest: Win Serious Sam 4 for PC or Stadia

In today's contest you can win Serious Sam 4 for PC or Stadia!

I don't understand this Sam fella. He claims to be serious, but then he quips and kinda talks like a smartass to monsters and demons and stuff. I think he should take his job a little more seriously, don't you?

Either way, Serious Sam 4 hit PC and Stadia this week, so we're giving away copies! As in, we're actually giving away Stadia keys. Let's see how this goes...

Contest: Win Serious Sam 4 for PC or Stadia screenshot

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20 Double Fine Years is stuffed with art and interviews

I kind of can't believe Double Fine has been around for 20 years. Where were you when you first heard about Psychonauts? At this point, I'm not even sure – but maybe a slick art book will jog my memory.

In collaboration with Indie By Design, Double Fine Productions is coming out with 20 Double Fine Years, a history-recapping art book "with over 280 pages of commentary, concept art, and key visuals."

New interviews were conducted with Tim Schafer, current and former staff members, and "many of the studio's long term collaborators." Game-wise, the book covers everything from Psychonauts and Brutal Legend to Iron Brigade and Costume Quest to the Day of the Tentacle and Full Throttle remasters.

The price is reasonable enough: $50 for the basic version, $65 for the Legend Edition with a cloth cover and gold-foil logo, and shipping is free the US and UK, so the bill won't jump when you checkout.

20 Double Fine Years will be released in Q2 2021.

20 Double Fine Years is stuffed with art and interviews screenshot

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Spelunky 2 dodges a delay on PC by temporarily leaving online co-op behind

Anyone who has played only one minute of Spelunky knows that the littlest thing can derail any effort. Creator Derek Yu won't let that happen for the PC launch of Spelunky 2.

When Spelunky 2 hits PC on September 29, it won't include online cooperative play. That's a concession that Yu is making in order to prevent a delay.

Spelunky 2 dodges a delay on PC by temporarily leaving online co-op behind screenshot

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Square Enix's eShop sale means it's time to load up your Switch with Final Fantasy games

A cozy weekend with some of your favorite Final Fantasy games on Nintendo Switch sure sounds nice. It's hard to justify buying re-releases when we've been there and done that multiple times before on other platforms, so if you've been holding out for a sale to stock up, I got you. Today's the day.

Square Enix is running a Nintendo eShop sale on a range of Final Fantasy games and other RPGs.

Nintendo Switch

Nintendo 3DS

On a related note, I can't stress enough how helpful it is to have deal expiration dates right there on each individual listing in the eShop. This sale will stick around until September 30 at 8:59 a.m. Pacific.

Square Enix's eShop sale means it's time to load up your Switch with Final Fantasy games screenshot



The newest Xbox Game Pass perk? Anime.

The value of Xbox Game Pass has been stated and restated many times over. Everyone knows exactly what they're getting into with Xbox's biggest subscription service. However, there's a new perk and -- make sure you're sitting down for this one -- it's not a video game at all.

Microsoft and Funimation have collaborated to give Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers two free months of Funimation Premium Plus access. This Funimation tier grants access to the entire library (which includes favorites like Attack on Titan, My Hero Academia, Persona, and Full Metal Alchemist), has both subs and dubs as options, enables watching five streams at a time, and lets you download shows to watch offline. Typically, this costs $8 per month.

The promotion starts today, and it seems as though promo codes will be sent to eligible Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers in the perks tab of the app. (It hasn't yet shown up in mine.) From there, you enter the code during checkout when signing up. According to the Funimation support page, this offer is only available to people who are first-time subscribers to Funimation. You'll also need a credit card to sign up (and remember to cancel before you're charged for the third month).

You have until November 25 to claim this offer. If you dabble in the anime, go get yourself a couple months for free.

The newest Xbox Game Pass perk? Anime. screenshot



Spellbreak celebrates five million players since launch

Prolitetariat, Inc, has been celebrating the release of its mystical battle royale title Spellbreak, announcing that the game has managed to pull an impressive five million players out of the hat since its September 3 launch.

For those yet to look into the free-to-play title, Spellbreak is an almighty class-based brawl which sees players face off against one another in a mythical fantasy universe known as the Hollow Lands. Players choose from a number of "Battlemages" before engaging in elemental-based combat, aiming to be the last sorcerer standing.

Spellbreak celebrates five million players since launch screenshot

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Final Fantasy XVI was reportedly in development before Final Fantasy XV launched

Final Fantasy XV was no spring chicken by the time it finally released. Its long, winding, troubled development is well-documented, and the timeline became something of a joke. In fact, that 10 years stretched to the point where work on the next Final Fantasy game reportedly overlapped with XV.

On the Triple Click podcast this week (as reported by VGC), Bloomberg's Jason Schreier revealed that Final Fantasy XVI has been in development for four years at this point. However, Square Enix is wary of divulging that information because it wants to avoid any comparisons to Final Fantasy XV's development cycle. Schreier adds "[Final Fantasy XVI is] coming sooner than people think."

Final Fantasy XVI was only formally unveiled last week, but it seems as though Square Enix won't keep people waiting too long. That doesn't mean like stealth PS5 launch game levels of quick, though. Square Enix is planning a "big information reveal" sometime in 2021.

Final Fantasy 16 is reportedly 'coming sooner than people think' [Video Games Chronicle]

Final Fantasy XVI was reportedly in development before Final Fantasy XV launched screenshot



Postal Redux is bringing murderous mayhem to Nintendo Switch next month

[This week Postal Redux sent us a check for $12 for our birthday. Here's a quick note from our sponsor.]

More than two decades since the original Postal arrived on PC, the infamous isometric shooter is making its long-awaited console debut with a Nintendo Switch port.

Developer Running With Scissors has enlisted the help of Polish studio MD Games to port Postal Redux - an enhanced version of the first game in the series - to the platform next month.

Postal Redux is bringing murderous mayhem to Nintendo Switch next month screenshot

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The best Shantae game is hitting Switch and Xbox One on October 15

WayForward has finally revealed a release date for Shantae: Risky's Revenge - Director's Cut for the platforms that weren't already hosting it, and we won't have to wait long, as October 15 is locked in.

On that date we'll be getting the game on Switch, Windows 10 and Xbox One. As a bit of a history lesson: while Risky's Revenge made its home on the DSi (double RIP, as the 3DS is dead now too), the Director's Cut was eventually released on iOS, PC (Steam, Humble) and PS4. Now that it's hitting a Microsoft console it'll effectively be available on every major marketplace. More Shantae games will be arriving this fall, too.

As a reminder, the Director's Cut basically infuses other versions with the same upgrades as the PC edition. There's a more streamlined warp system, a harder difficulty setting and a better map mechanic. It's all very subtle stuff, but it'll make your first playthrough that much smoother.

Also, unlike several subsequent titles that utilized a level-based approach, Risky's Revenge is a true Metroidvania from start to finish that won't leave you feeling winded. It's incredibly breezy, to the point where you might even be ready to run through it all over again after you're finished. As far as I'm concerned, WayForward is still chasing its greatness when it comes to the Shantae series.

WayForward [Twitter]

The best Shantae game is hitting Switch and Xbox One on October 15 screenshot



This free PS4 beach theme for The Last of Us Part II is surprisingly chill

After teasing "exciting things" for The Last of Us Day, Naughty Dog says that Last of Us fans will want to hop online tomorrow, September 26, at 9:00 a.m. Pacific. "We have a lot of exciting content lined up, which you'll be able to find on TheLastofUs.com/TLOUDay," said senior comms manager Scott Lowe.

But before then, the studio made several early Last of Us Day announcements including a Last of Us board game from CMON (the team behind Bloodborne: The Board Game), a 16" Ellie statue from Gaming Heads, a pair of 1/9th scale Joel and Ellie figures from Mamegyorai Collectibles, and a 2XLP vinyl and two screen-printed posters from Mondo. Those posters are bound to go fast. They always do.

For specific pre-order times and availability info, consult this overview article.

If you're not looking to drop a wad of cash on merch in these trying times, there's also a pleasant freebie to grab for your PS4. The Last of Us Part II has a new dynamic beach theme with rolling waves.

Is that it? Was I getting my hopes up for news about Factions? Naughty Dog capped off the preview by saying "we have a few other things up our sleeves for tomorrow's The Last of Us Day festivities."

The fact that all of these (potentially) smaller announcements were made today gives me confidence.

This free PS4 beach theme for The Last of Us Part II is surprisingly chill screenshot



Destiny 2's next expansion will require a full redownload as Bungie shifts to a new backend pipeline

Destiny 2 is undergoing some huge changes this fall, most notably the fact that it's going to be jettisoning a ton of previous content to make way for new things. Bungie has hinted at some upcoming backend changes for a while; but now thanks to the studio's latest blog post, we actually have some semblance of how that is going to directly impact players when the Beyond Light expansion arrives.

First up: the Bethesda preamble, as I'm calling it. Remember when Bethesda "warned" players that Fallout 76 was going to be super buggy before it was released? Bungie is doing something similar to temper expectations. Here's the gist: "The new scripting environment changed many behaviors in complex ways, and you may see interesting behavior changes or bugs in pre-Beyond-Light missions (and public events, and similar) that were originally built and tested on the previous system.  We've tested these missions heavily and stamped out many bugs, but some will undoubtedly slip through."

While Destiny as a whole hasn't been nearly as problematic as say...any Bethesda game ever made, it's good to have this heads-up now just in case, so folks are more diligent when reporting bugs during Beyond Light's launch. A bonus of this system? You can re-join fireteams in the Tower without reloading the game. Some of that backend jank is finally going away!

Then there's the issue of the entire build of the game, which was Frakensteined together through various patches. To make way for a uniform new build, you will need to redownload the entire game when Beyond Light hits. Bungie has issued a statement on the matter, saying: "we know this will be painful for those with slower or metered internet connections, and we're sorry about that."

Here's the good news. Bungie is allowing 10 hours of preload time before launch, plus the install size of the game will shrink by "30-40%." Bungie says that new builds can also be deployed much quicker, with an estimated time of "less than 12 hours" compared to the previous "north of 24 hour" requirement in the past. It also helps their entire development cycle.

Most of this is good! Destiny and Destiny 2 have often been accused of running on spaghetti code by some, so this should smooth a lot of those issues out.

This Week at Bungie [Bungie.net]

Destiny 2's next expansion will require a full redownload as Bungie shifts to a new backend pipeline screenshot



Sega set to produce Yakuza live-action movie

According to the Hollywood insiders over at Variety, Sega is getting set to begin production on a live-action movie adaptation of its skull-cracking RPG series, Yakuza.

The new movie is a joint production of Sega, 1212 Entertainment, and Wild Sheep Content, and is currently in the process of securing script writers, so this news comes extremely early into the feature film's production.

"Yakuza offers us a new playground in which to set compelling stories with complex characters in a unique environment that audiences have rarely seen before," 1212 Entertainment told Variety. "The saga of Kazuma Kiryu has a built-in cinematic appeal – a mix of kinetic action with bursts of comedy, multiple converging storylines, and a gripping journey towards redemption."

While there is no plot to speak of, logic would dictate that the film will follow events similar to those of the video game series, as protagonist Kazuma Kiryu steps out of prison and straight into a brutal and bloody clan war. It also seems a given that characters such as Haruka, Nishikiyama and, of course, the dastardly Goro Majima will be putting in appearances - though this is all purely speculation on my part. Sega has more Yakuza news to reveal this Sunday at the Tokyo Games Show, so no doubt we'll be hearing more about this movie very soon.

I do not envy the casting director's task of filling the role of Kazuma. This is a character with a style and personality that has become so embedded with the psyche of fans, that it would take someone special to don his snakeskin shoes. In movies such as The Bodyguard and The Street Fighter, Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba played protagonists which clearly had an influence on the creation of The Dragon of Dojima, but it ain't 1976, so I doubt he's in the running. Regardless, I'm intrigued to see how this new film project will turn out.

Sega developing live-action adaptation based on Yakuza [Variety]

Sega set to produce Yakuza live-action movie screenshot



World of Warcraft will allow Druids to alter their shapeshifting cosmetics for free at the new barber

In case you haven't heard, Blizzard recently provided an update on World of Warcraft's level squish system and managed to bury a pretty big (previously known, but big) nugget inside of that blog post: the paid cosmetic alteration system is going away, and is being replaced by a free in-game barber option.

Now, thanks to a dedicated blog on the subject, we know that the system will be getting a few upgrades to make every race shine a bit more. The character creation screen is completely different now, with animations that convey the flavor of each class ("Priests levitating toward the heavens" is one example). You'll also be allotted more customization options, like "skin tones, hairstyles, eye colors, tattoos, jewelry, beards, scars or flower hair ornaments."

Blizzard says that while the past system tied some of these concepts together (as in, a certain hair type would alter your eye color), they're now independent one of another, allowing for more freedom of expression. In that same vein, Druids can now alter their shapeshifting forms too, including the option to use glyphs, Legion alterations or shapeshifting cosmetics picked up from other areas of the game.

Between this and the relaxed requirements for unlocking allied races, we're about to see a lot more character variation in Azeroth going forward.

Character Customization [Twitter]

World of Warcraft will allow Druids to alter their shapeshifting cosmetics for free at the new barber screenshot



(Update) Rumor: New Yakuza title to be revealed September 27

[Update: Speaking on Twitter, Yakuza producer Masayoshi Yokoyama has said that Sunday's stream will not feature the debut of a new Yakuza title, but did note that a new game in the series is currently in production. New information pertaining to the Yakuza series is still expected. The quote was translated by Gematsu.]

In a statement since deleted from Twitter, it was seemingly revealed that Sega has plans to debut the latest entry in the Yakuza franchise this Sunday at the Tokyo Games Show.

The news is expected to be announced as part of the Sega Nama live stream, which is scheduled to broadcast on September 27 at 20:00 JST. While Sega had previously stated that said stream will offer "the latest information concerning in the Yakuza series," it appears that one of the stream's hosts, Ayana Tsubaki, might have possibly let the cat of the bag early by revealing the existence of a new entry in the popular RPG/brawler franchise.

Of course, this would hardly be a surprise. After all, the Yakuza / Ryu go Gotoku series has seen a new entry - or spin-off - almost every single year for the past decade - its most recent venture being the strategy-based Yakuza: Like a Dragon. As to whether this new title will be a Like a Dragon sequel, a classic Yakuza brawler, another Kiwami remake, or a new entry in the Ishin sub-series remains to be seen.

But as long as you're dropping a bike on someone's noodle, Everything will be copacetic.

New Yakuza title to be announced on September 27 [Games Talk / Gematsu]

(Update) Rumor: New Yakuza title to be revealed September 27 screenshot



Hyperdimension Neptunia anime now streaming on Steam

Hey NEPNEPS, Do you feel like you need some Nep to Nep you through this coming weekenep? If so, then Idea Factory has got you covered, as Hyperdimension Neptunia: the Animation is now available to purchase and stream via Steam.

Joining the gaming platform are two feature-length compilation episodes, as well as the 2019 OVA Summer Vacation, which is making its English sub debut! All of the above episodes are presented with original Japanese voice tracks, with subtitles available in both English and traditional and simplified Chinese, and will run you around $15 USD each.

Hyperdimension Neptunia anime now streaming on Steam screenshot

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Blade is in Fortnite now, and it's open season on all suckheads

Nearly a year ago now (time flies) I saw a re-release of the original Blade in theaters, and it still holds up. Wesley Snipes just embodies the character (a little too method in later years!), and it quietly managed to make superhero movies cool way before the original 2000 X-Men broke the dam. The daywalker is about to get even more relevant too, as he's been recently confirmed for the MCU.

Before that happens, Epic Games has added Blade to their Marvel Fortnite event in skin form. Available today, you can snag Blade in one of two ways: just the two skins (cloaked and non-cloaked) for 2000 V-Bucks (roughly $20) or in bundle form for 2300 V-Bucks. The bundle will stay at that price until roughly 12AM ET tonight, and comes with a special glider, as well as a sword back-bling, an emote and a sword-themed pickaxe. After that time it'll revert to 3500 V-Bucks.

I haven't bought a Fortnite skin in ages, so I plunked down my own cash for Blade this time around. The skins themselves are well-made, and the glider has one of the most over-the-top animations thus far. As a reminder, Fortnite is running a special Marvel-universe brawl mode right now, on top of their experimental "Party Royale" hangout gametype (which is kind of like Second Life but more action oriented: a clear response to the current global lockdown).

Fortnite [Twitter]

Blade is in Fortnite now, and it's open season on all suckheads screenshot

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Fallout 76 is opening the public test server back up for some big changes

As a reminder, plans have changed for Fallout 76.

Even if the current global situation wasn't happening this game isn't exactly known for hitting release targets, so shifting some upcoming features into 2021 makes a whole lot of sense. But we do know that more content is coming to the public test server (PTS) very soon, including a taste of some big upcoming story content.

Straight from Bethesda's newest Inside the Vault update, we know that the PTS is planning on testing the new C.A.M.P. Shelters mechanic as soon as next week. Basically, the idea is that you can build your own custom shelter that has a "separate build budget" from your above-ground lair. In other words, you can avoid all of the restrictions that come with C.A.M.P.s, a big win for the custom content crowd.

Bethesda says that they want to test "three different types" of shelters in the PTS period, allowing players to utilize "one of each type," which will sport their own budgets. I know Fallout 76 gets knocked on often, but that's going to be pretty rad for all of the folks who love building stuff more than they like actually playing the game. This sort of creative freedom reminds me of the Bethesda games of old.

"In the weeks to follow" after that, Bethesda will bring Steel Dawn quests into the mix. As a reminder, Steel Dawn is the (still planned for winter) update that will bring more Brotherhood of Steel story components into the mix. It's going to be a big one!

Inside the Vault [Bethesda.net]

Fallout 76 is opening the public test server back up for some big changes screenshot



Halloween spooks are back in the Animal Crossing: New Horizons fall update

Do you know what one of my favorite things about Autumn is? Sitting outside a cafe, slowly slipping away on a nice chai latte. Sadly, I haven't been able to do that this year because of COVID and all the noxious smoke from the California wildfires, and it looks like I won't be able to do it in Animal Crossing: New Horizon either because Brewster isn't part of the upcoming Fall update.

But Jack the O' Lantern is, and he's bringing a bunch of Halloween goodies with him. The Fall update will get players ready for All Hallows' Eve with candy they can buy and give to residents, and pumpkins they can grow and craft into new items. I'll admit it's been a month since I last visited my island, but I just can't resist making some jack o' lanterns to get my town into the spirit.

Halloween spooks are back in the Animal Crossing: New Horizons fall update screenshot

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Marvel's Avengers recently locked people out of rewards, so everyone can grab some free currency for a limited time

Marvel's Avengers recently got a patch that fixed "hundreds of issues," but in a modern games-as-a-service "AAA" game (hello Fallout 76), it can be tough to track down every glitch. Or worse, sometimes, those updates actually add more bugs.

Square Enix recently ran into another issue with Avengers, this time involving the inability to accept Faction Missions or Villain Sectors for some players. As a result, they're granting everyone 250 Polychoron and 500 Uru currency for your troubles. Yes, those are real names of real currencies in Avengers: a telltale sign of a real games-as-a-service title that wants you to juggle-grind as many numbers as possible.

There's a catch, though. You need to claim the reward before October 1 at 10AM PT. It doesn't just auto-claim either, as there's another catch: you need to "view one of your challenge cards to activate this reward." That's either a technical concession or a sneaky way to not give everyone the reward automatically!

Beyond that whole fiasco "various crash and stability fixes" are also arriving in the most recent patch (1.3.1). Next up? Subtitle text size options, a high contrast mode, a War Zone ping system and the option to toggle the game so that hero icons are always visible. Square Enix says that most of these changes are a direct result of fan feedback. Aw!

Version 1.3.1 [Square Enix]

Marvel's Avengers recently locked people out of rewards, so everyone can grab some free currency for a limited time screenshot



The amazing Scorpina is headed to Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid

Now THIS is more like it. Following the addition of a slew of cool but relatively faceless Rangers to the roster, nWay's Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid has revealed that the third and final DLC character for season three is classic, incomparable villain, Scorpina.

Debuting in the original Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers series, Scorpina was one of Rita Repulsa's most ruthless lieutenants, battling the Rangers alongside fellow villains such as Goldar and Revolto. Bedecked in - frankly - fucking amazing armour, Scorpina fights off her enemies with a vicious spiked gauntlet and a curved sword which had boomerang-style properties. Like most Power Rangers villains, Scorpina can assume gigantic form, in which she becomes a twisted, not-very-like-scorpion-like, monster.

You can check out a teaser trailer for Scorpina below, she looks great!

The amazing Scorpina is headed to Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid screenshot

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Here's what the Monster Hunter Rise amiibo actually look like

Last week, Capcom revealed Monster Hunter Rise and three new amiibo: which were curiously shown off via artist renderings. Thanks to some detective work from Twitter user Gajinhunter, we now know what they actually look like, and the reality is quite different.

As a reminder, these three amiibo (as standalones) are exclusive to GameStop in the US, and have varying degrees of exclusivity elsewhere in the world. Anyone can grab the middle Magnamalo if you can snag a collector's edition of Monster Hunter Rise; but the other two need to be purchased individually.

Right now there is no online listing for these amiibo on GameStop's site. Unfortunately, it looks like you need to pre-order them in-person at this time: so eBay might be the only option for a lot of people. Good luck!

If you're not keeping track, there are currently seven unreleased amiibo as of today: Joker, Hero, Cat Mario, Cat Peach and the trio above. Joker and Hero are out in some regions now, but are officially being released on October 2 in the US. Here's a full list of every known amiibo to date!

Gajinhunter [Twitter]

Here's what the Monster Hunter Rise amiibo actually look like screenshot

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Resident Evil Village may come to PS4 and Xbox One

During its Tokyo Games Show presentation, Capcom noted that upcoming gothic horror title Resident Evil Village could potentially arrive on PS4 and Xbox One, alongside its PC and next-gen brethren.

"While Resident Evil Village is being developed specifically for next-generation consoles and PC, we're looking into delivering the experience on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One as well," said a Capcom producer during the stream. "We're looking into it but we can't make any promises, however we will do our best to bring a top-tier survival horror experience to current-generation consoles."

Capcom also released a new developer diary, which you can check out below.

Resident Evil Village may come to PS4 and Xbox One screenshot

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Classic Metal Gear titles now available on PC via GOG.com

[Update: Well, that took all of 10 minutes. Shortly after the Konami teaser, GOG.com announced that Metal Gear, Metal Gear Solid, Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance, and Konami Collector's Series are all now available to purchase from the GOG.com website.]

Konami has posted a teasing tweet this morning, which simply features an emoji of a cardboard box and an "at" for classic PC game publishers Good Old Games.com (GOG).

So, what's it all about? Well, when it comes to gaming and cardboard boxes, most people's minds will drift to the Tactical Espionage Action of the Metal Gear series. And given that there has been a slew of rumors floating around of both PC ports and remakes of the legendary stealth franchise, that association will no doubt prove pretty snug in this scenario.

We will keep you informed once Konami is ready to officially open the box and reveal its contents.

Classic Metal Gear titles now available on PC via GOG.com screenshot

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Samurai Shodown is headed to Xbox Series X this winter

SNK has announced that its excellent one-on-one fighter Samurai Shodown will be making the leap to Xbox Series X this winter, bringing all of the steel-clashing, claret-spewing action of the 2019 release into a whole new generation.

Already available on PS4, PC, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch, Samurai Shodown takes the very deliberately paced hand-to-hand action of the classic Neo-Geo series and dresses it up with an attractive modern sheen, accompanied by a varied roster of classic, all-new, and even special guest characters.

Samurai Shodown is headed to Xbox Series X this winter screenshot

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Contest: Win Fight Crab for Switch, and a copy of its cool-as-shell soundtrack

In today's contest you can win a Switch copy of Fight Crab and its soundtrack!

It's official: Fight Crab is pretty good! I mean, how could it not be? It's crabs fighting with human weapons. Hard to screw that one up.

If you want to experience the game for yourself, you can either buy it (please do so these types of games keep getting made), or you can win it here! As a bonus, we've also got CD's of the soundtrack to give away with your digital copy. What more could you ask for?

Contest: Win Fight Crab for Switch, and a copy of its cool-as-shell soundtrack screenshot

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Starstruck: Hands of Time captures that wacky experimental PS1 energy so well

As a multi-genre adventure drawing from rhythm gaming, role-playing, and claymation, Starstruck: Hands of Time isn't easily classified, but that's a good thing! The upcoming PC and PS4 title from Createdelic brings me back to the let's-try-anything-and-everything oddball energy of the PS1.

As much as I'm more interested in the "giant destructive time-traveling hand" that strolls around like Thing from The Addams Family and stomps a playground-esque diorama city, I respect Starstruck for trying to blend other elements (like guitar gameplay) into a multi-protagonist puzzle adventure.

The first act – around an hour of two or gameplay – is readily available on Steam in a Prologue demo.

As for the final release, it's planned for PlayStation 4 and PC in 2021. What a cool-ass game.

Starstruck: Hands of Time captures that wacky experimental PS1 energy so well screenshot

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New to Rocket League? Here are the best YouTubers to follow

Rocket League is free-to-play now and that has brought a ton of new players into the fold. Today, Rocket League hit one million concurrent players for the first time ever. There are a lot of people checking out this delightful five-year-old game, and many of them will inevitably like what they find.

And, for some of them, it'll turn into an obsession. It'll transform into more than just playing. They'll start watching esports. They'll start subscribing to YouTubers. They'll tune in for Twitch streams every night. Rocket League has no shortage of content to consume.

I know because I've lived it. I want to pass along my experience with some recommendations of my favorite Rocket League YouTubers. It'll be a little bit of everything -- pro play, entertainment value, and tutorials. Hopefully someone finds something they like.

New to Rocket League? Here are the best YouTubers to follow screenshot

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RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Complete Edition is free to grab on the Epic Games Store

Frontier Developments re-released 2004's RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 on Nintendo Switch, Steam, and the Epic Games Store today, and if you're down for some management-sim escapism, the latter is free.

You have until Thursday, October 1 to add RCT3 to your Epic library. Here's a simple but effective crash montage to get us all in the spirit – not that we'd ever intentionally harm our guests. Not a chance!

This particular version of the theme park game is a Complete Edition with 1080p support, two packed-in expansions (Soaked! and Wild!), and "increased compatibility for new PC hardware," as Frontier puts it.

The next spot on Epic's freebie calendar is going to Pikuniku on October 1. I adore that silly game.

RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Complete Edition is free to grab on the Epic Games Store screenshot



You have another (probably slim) chance to pre-order a PS5 tomorrow

It's been a struggle to secure a PlayStation 5 in time for the mid-November launch, and we're gonna keep on struggling for months. If you missed the chaotic first evening of pre-orders, your odds are dwindling, but they aren't at zero. A few retailers are planning to open orders back up on September 25.

  • In the US, GameStop will have "further quantities of PS5 consoles" online at GameStop.com and in-store.
  • In Canada, Walmart will offer more PS5 pre-orders online only at Walmart.ca "late tomorrow morning EST."
  • And in the UK, GAME will sell a "limited stock of the PS5 coming tomorrow late morning" online only at GAME.co.uk.

Assuming this goes about as quickly and painfully as the last round, you'll want to have your account of choice primed and ready to go. If you're hoping to land a PlayStation 5 Digital Edition in 2020, that has increasingly felt like a pipe dream. Be prepared to fork over full price for the disc-compatible big boy. There's no room for hesitation at this point. Scarcity – and the perception of scarcity – has taken over.

The retailers didn't specify an exact start time, so you'll want to keep tabs on @Wario64 and pray.

Users on ResetEra have reported that Sony is offering another round of direct-to-consumer PS5 pre-orders on September 25. If you registered way back when, be on the lookout for a potential email soon.

You have another (probably slim) chance to pre-order a PS5 tomorrow screenshot



Xbox Series X's expandable storage is very expensive, but Microsoft says an SSD is necessary for new games

As predicted, an extra terabyte of storage for the Xbox Series X won't come cheap. You'll have to pay nearly half the price of the Series X just to double the amount of space you're working with.

Microsoft has been touting the Xbox Series X's 1TB expandable storage card for a while now. It's a proprietary PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD which is top of the line right now in terms of speed. It's also very expensive, as Microsoft confirmed today that the official Seagate SSD will retail for $220. However, that's in line with what PCIe 4.0 tech costs for now.

For anyone who's looking at the Series X's base 1TB internal SSD (or the Series S' 512GB) and realizing it's not enough for next-gen's inevitably huge file sizes, biting the bullet on the external SSD isn't the only option. USB 3.1 HDDs are supported on Xbox Series S/X, just as they were on Xbox One.

Going that route will require some install location Tetris, though. Microsoft presented the capabilities of HDDs and SSDs with this table:

Xbox Series X's expandable storage is very expensive, but Microsoft says an SSD is necessary for new games screenshot

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The Medium will offer an out-of-body experience on PC and Xbox Series X

Spooky game specialists Bloober Team has released a new story trailer for its creepy upcoming adventure The Medium, which will launch on PC and Xbox Series X this holiday season.

The Medium will tell a tale of psychological horror as players step into the mind-reading shoes of a young psychic practitioner, Marianne, who must harness her powerful abilities to traverse both the real world and the spirit world at one and the same time, unearthing clues and speaking with lost souls in order to solve a mystery embedded within an abandoned communist resort.

The Medium will offer an out-of-body experience on PC and Xbox Series X screenshot

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Amazon Luna is a $6-per-month cloud gaming service for PC, Mac, iOS, and Fire TV

Are you totally over the "streaming wars" yet? Well, they're just getting started. This morning, Amazon announced the cloud gaming service Luna, its answer to Google's Stadia, and it costs $6 per month.

The pitch is familiar. Through the power of the cloud, you can stream games like Control, Resident Evil 7, Sonic Mania Plus, and Trails of Cold Steel III to your PC, Mac, Fire TV Stick, or – and this is surprising in light of Microsoft's recent xCloud struggles with Apple – even your iPhone or iPad via web app.

You can use the Luna app on:

  • PC (requires Windows 10 with support for DirectX 11)
  • Mac (OSX 10.13+)
  • FireTV devices (Fire TV Stick - 2nd gen, Fire TV Stick 4K, or Fire TV Cube - 2nd gen)

Additionally you can use:

  • Chrome web browser (version 83+) for PC and Mac
  • Safari web browser (iOS14) for iPhone and iPad

Amazon says it's "working to add support across more devices in the future."

Luna Controller

With a Luna+ subscription, you'll be able to stream on up to two devices at 1080p/60fps, although Amazon says "select titles" will go up to 4K. There's a $50 gamepad – the Luna Controller – but you could (and probably should) just stick with your Xbox One pad, DualShock 4, or mouse and keyboard.

As for internet speeds, the requirement is 10 Mbps for 1080p and 35 Mbps for 4K.

Currently, Luna+ is invitation-only, the 100+ game library will grow over time, and that $6-per-month fee is the "introductory price." Early access sign-ups in the US are over here on this landing page.

Cleverly, Amazon is using a channel-based approach not unlike the paid subscription add-ons found on Amazon Prime Video. The first example: Ubisoft. Pricing wasn't mentioned yet, but a separate Ubisoft channel will include games like Assassin's Creed Valhalla and Watch Dogs: Legion along with DLC.

As someone with a strict data cap, I'll be sitting this one (and all of them!) out.

Amazon Luna is a $6-per-month cloud gaming service for PC, Mac, iOS, and Fire TV screenshot

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