Blog Archive

Friday, 9 October 2020

Contest: Win eerie horror title Darkwood on Switch from Super Rare Games

In today's contest you can win a Switch copy of Darkwood from Super Rare Games!

Super Rare Games is at it again! This week they're keeping in line with the Halloween spirit and offering up Darkwood, an atmospheric top-down survival horror joint.

You know the drill, y'all -- read all about it, and enter to win below!

Contest: Win eerie horror title Darkwood on Switch from Super Rare Games screenshot

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The next Cyberpunk 2077 stream takes on the most important feature of an RPG: The cars

CD Projekt Red has given us a lot of looks at Cyberpunk 2077 over the past few months. For instance, we've gotten insight to all the different role-playing Lifepaths, we've learned how the detective-like Braindancing works, and we've been introduced to the gangs of the city.

As we barrel toward Cyberpunk 2077's November 19 release date, CD Projekt is kind of running out of things to show us. That's why an entire episode of Night City Wire is dedicated to how the cars go vroom.

The next Cyberpunk 2077 stream takes on the most important feature of an RPG: The cars screenshot

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Ghost of Tsushima has a dog-befriending charm in New Game+

Sucker Punch Productions is putting in work for New Game+ mode in Ghost of Tsushima.

Along with armor loadouts (!), a new horse, Ghost Flower-fueled vanity items, another upgrade tier for your sword, bow, and armor, and "extremely powerful charms that can help Jin unleash devastating attacks and may change the way you play," there's this: the Charm of Canine Recruitment.

If you felt bad about slaying all those Mongolian dogs in Ghost of Tsushima – especially back-to-back with The Last of Us Part II – then you'll want to unlock this charm in New Game+ to befriend them.

The other big part of update 1.1, the co-op Legends mode, also has dog petting. This might seem like a small detail in the grand scheme of things, but it goes to show that they're passionate about NG+.

I'm glad I wrapped up the platinum trophy grind last week. I'm ready for all of this.

Ghost of Tsushima has a dog-befriending charm in New Game+ screenshot



Supraland is bringing its Zelda, Portal, and Metroid-inspired sandbox to consoles

Supraland is one of countless cool-looking games that got away from me in 2019. The timing wasn't right – and to be honest, it still kind of isn't! – but my interest in this 3D metroidvania persists.

If you're intrigued by a first-person sandbox adventure game with secrets to find, puzzles to solve, and skeletons to clobber, you might be pleased to hear that it's coming to consoles. After gaining traction on Steam, Supraland is releasing for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on October 22, 2020.

The solo developer, David Münnich, teamed up with Humble Games for these console ports.

There's still a PC demo to check out on Steam if you're curious about this stick-figure world. I appreciate the user reviewer who called Supraland the "platonic ideal of a late '90s/early '00s game." I hear that.

Supraland is bringing its Zelda, Portal, and Metroid-inspired sandbox to consoles screenshot



Now GameStop employees will badger you while holding a Microsoft Surface

Big news out of GameStop today. The in-store experience is going to morph from an underpaid employee asking if you'd like to pre-order a game or buy a protection plan from behind a desk, to an underpaid employee asking if you'd like to pre-order a game or buy a protection plan with a Microsoft Surface in their hands.

A new "multi-year strategic partnership" between GameStop and Microsoft will outfit store associates with Surface tablets. A press release from GameStop says "The mobility of Microsoft Surface will allow associates to move freely within the store footprint, meeting the needs of customers faster and more efficiently." There's no escape!

The crux of this deal is far more boring, though. It'll also see GameStop's backend shift to Microsoft's Dynamics 365 which is a series of cloud-based business applications. GameStop will also move to Microsoft 365 and Teams at some point for better internal communication.

Lastly, it's mentioned that Xbox All Access -- the rent-to-own payment plan for next-gen Xbox -- is coming to GameStop. That's nothing special, as All Access is already offered at the other big-box retailers like Walmart, Target, and Best Buy. 

Anyway, great news for GameStop employees who want to feel a little more tech savvy. Hopefully no one gets fired for streaming xCloud to their Surface while on the clock.

Now GameStop employees will badger you while holding a Microsoft Surface screenshot



Splishy splash, this week's Epic freebies have an ocean and a storm

One Epic freebie this week is extremely chill. The other? Extremely not chill. Opposites attract or something. Both are waterlogged.

Abzu and Rising Storm 2: Vietnam are both free on the Epic Games Store this week. Abzu is a mostly-relaxing swim through the sea where you'll marvel at underwater creatures and try to unravel an obscure mystery about civilization's downfall. This promotion comes just one month before Abzu developer Giant Squid debuts its next game, The Pathless, as a PS5 launch game.

Rising Storm 2: Vietnam is less about taking it easy and soaking in the sights. It's a large-scale multiplayer shooter that recreates battles of the Vietnam War. It's asymmetric in its gameplay, leaving players to execute different roles and operate different machinery. 

Next week's Epic games ramp up the spooky Halloween vibes. At least partially. Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs is half of the Epic giveaway. The other half is beloved micro-strategy game Kingdom: New Lands.

Abzu, Rising Storm 2: Vietnam [Epic Games Store]

Splishy splash, this week's Epic freebies have an ocean and a storm screenshot



Outriders, the Destiny meets Gears of War shooter, has been pushed back to next year

I don't know what it says about Outriders that I feel the need to exhaustively recount the details of this game every time I write about it. Maybe that I think the name is forgettable, maybe that I think it has a forgettable premise. Anyway, here goes:

Outriders is the Square Enix-published shooter from Bulletstorm developer People Can Fly. It looks half Destiny and half Gears of War, and it's billed as one of those infinitely-running games-as-a-service looter shooters. And, it's not launching on time.

Originally scheduled for this holiday season, Outriders has been delayed until February 2, 2021. Whether or not it's still a next-gen launch window title depends on your definition of launch window. Regardless, it won't be around right away when people have new consoles.

People Can Fly also announced that Outriders will have full cross-play support on all platforms. This is important because it's a current- and next-gen game. It'll launch on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series S/X. It's also part of the Smart Delivery program on Xbox that detects which console you're playing on and automatically delivers an optimized version.

I look forward to again explaining Outriders the next time I write about Outriders.

Outriders, the Destiny meets Gears of War shooter, has been pushed back to next year screenshot



Fall Guys doesn't make it easy to play the four new Season 2 levels

The Fall Guys Season 2 update rolled out today on PS4 and PC, and so far, it's a little underwhelming.

If you're the type of dedicated player who maxed out the first battle pass and won't mind doing it again for new outfits (like an orc costume) or other new cosmetics (like fancy nameplates), then you'll be fine.

If you're someone who adored the first few weeks of Fall Guys but quickly fell out of love with the repetition, expect history to repeat itself – if you even manage to rekindle the flame in the first place.

There are four new stages in Season 2 – Knight Fever (a gauntlet race), Egg Siege (a team game with more protected bases), Wall Guys (a stair-building game), and Hoopsie Legends (a solo hoop-diving game) – but there's no consistent way to access them. Instead, they're mixed in with the existing levels.

Fall Guys doesn't make it easy to play the four new Season 2 levels screenshot

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Borderlands 3's Bloody Harvest Halloween event is back, but it's less grindy now

Borderlands 3's Halloween event is half trick and half treat. Gearbox hasn't exactly gone all out, as it's mostly just rolled out the same festivities as last year. However, getting through it all should be a little quicker, and no one is going to say no to that.

Bloody Harvest is back for the second year (although it existed in Borderlands 2 as well), and this dance has all the same steps. Meet Maurice on Sanctuary III, farm Hecktoplasm drops from haunted ghost enemies, take the portal to Heck (which is its own in-game location), and go kill Captain Haunt.

Here's what's in it for you, apart from the loot that drops on the ground: 

Borderlands 3's Bloody Harvest Halloween event is back, but it's less grindy now screenshot

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AMD reveals new Zen 3 chips that look to overthrow Intel's previous dominance

For years AMD processors were known as the "budget" chip when it came to building a gaming PC. If you wanted to truly call yourself an enthusiast, you always went with the Intel chip because it was, by and large, the industry leader. Not content to be second fiddle, AMD set out to claw its way to the top of the processor market with its Zen architecture that launched in 2017.

Ever since, AMD's processors have been slowly usurping Intel processors' previous leads in nearly every benchmark. That trend looks to continue when AMD releases the 5000 series of Ryzen 3 chips next month.

During a half-hour stream today, AMD rattled off multiple wins for its new chips. With performance boosts against its own previous line as well as competitors' while still using the same AM4 socket, the 5000 series is looking to be a beast of a processor line for both gamers and content creators.

Some of the highlights include a 2.8x efficiency bonus in performance per watt compared to the upcoming Intel i9-10900K chip and a 26% frame rate performance improvement over the Zen 2 3000 series at 1080p. In a moment that felt like it was stripped right out of Silicon Valley, AMD also revealed that the new Ryzen 9 5900x was the first processor to break a 600 score on the industry-standard Cinebench benchmarking tool.

Now, this could all be corporate peacocking, but it seems like AMD has finally pulled ahead of Intel's processor offerings and has potential to be the dominant force in both gaming and workstation computers. The new line of chips will be on store "shelves" starting November 5.

There will be four chips released as part of the Zen 3 5000 series, and here are their specifications.

AMD Ryzen 9 5950X (launching at $799)

  • # of CPU Cores: 16
  • # of Threads: 32
  • Max Boost Clock: Up to 4.9GHz
  • Base Clock: 3.4GHz
  • Default TDP / TDP: 105W

AMD Ryzen 9 5900X (launching at $549)

  • # of CPU Cores: 12
  • # of Threads: 24
  • Max Boost Clock: Up to 4.8GHz
  • Base Clock: 3.7GHz
  • Default TDP / TDP: 105W

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X (launching at $449)

  • # of CPU Cores: 8
  • # of Threads: 16
  • Max Boost Clock: Up to 4.7GHz
  • Base Clock: 3.8GHz
  • Default TDP / TDP: 105W

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X (launching at $299)

  • # of CPU Cores: 6
  • # of Threads: 12
  • Max Boost Clock: Up to 4.6GHz
  • Base Clock: 3.7GHz
  • Default TDP / TDP: 65W

After the stream, I was talking with my friend and fellow community member TheBlondeBass about how it seems like we're really hitting a new pace when it comes to PC component evolution.

Between AMD's news and the announcement of the Nvidia 3000 series of graphics cards, the tech landscape is seemingly on an exponential rise in performance. It's a wonderful time to be a PC gamer and we'll continue to get a better look at the generation to come when AMD reveals the new RX 6000 series of video cards on October 30.

AMD reveals new Zen 3 chips that look to overthrow Intel's previous dominance screenshot



Nintendo Download: Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero?

Everyone is packing in the Switch eShop releases for the holidays! It's a huge day today with over 40 games hitting the marketplace: good luck sorting through them all.

The marquee releases this time around are I Am Dead, The Survivalists, FIFA 21 Legacy Edition and Ikenfell. The Switch is also welcoming the pair of Prinny games on the system on October 13, which were announced way earlier in the year. On that same day, Minecraft is coming to Smash Ultimate.

So while Nintendo doesn't have a whole lot planned (yet) in terms of software, the Switch platform itself is fairly healthy in terms of 2020 offerings. As usual, there's a mix of both old and new in the below list, which is rolling out from today through October 14.

Nintendo Download: Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero? screenshot

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Bugsnax crawls out of the woodwork in time for PlayStation 5's launch

The PlayStation 5's launch is going to come with an infestation. I doubt most people will mind.

Indie darling Bugsnax is set to launch day-and-date with the PS5. Developer Young Horses announced the November 12 release date this morning:

Bugsnax crawls out of the woodwork in time for PlayStation 5's launch screenshot

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Nintendo is going to sell Pokemon Sword and Shield 'complete editions' for $90 each

As you know by now, first-party Nintendo games rarely go down in value in the first few years of their existence. The same can be said about Pokemon Sword and Shield, which is still rolling with a $60 MSRP. It looks like the upcoming "complete editions" are going to be using that same tactic.

In case you missed it, The Pokemon Company announced recently that there was going to be a physical bundle for both Sword and Shield that also packed in their accompanying season pass. Thanks to an Amazon listing for Pokemon Sword, we now know exactly how much that's going to cost: $90. In short, that's literally just the price of the game itself and the actual digital pass ($30), which comes with two DLC expansions.

So basically, if you prefer physical and haven't picked up the new Pokemon game yet, you can either opt for this package or the original run and just buy the pass manually. The box says that "no separate download" is required for the expansion pass. Also note that this new edition comes with 100 Poke Balls and a Pikachu/Eevee uniform (which were originally pre-order bonuses).

The "Game + Expansion Pass" physical bundles will be released on November 6.

Pokemon Sword + Pokemon Sword Expansion Pass [Amazon]

Nintendo is going to sell Pokemon Sword and Shield 'complete editions' for $90 each screenshot

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Minecraft movie pushed beyond its 2022 release date

Given that it is pretty much the greatest-selling video game of all-time, it's no surprise to anybody that Minecraft was tipped to be adapted for the silver screen. However, it seems that Steve and friends will have to hold on for their cinematic debut, as Minecraft the movie has been officially pushed back.

The delay is part of Warner Bros. current conundrum regarding is movie release slate for the coming years. As is the case for all major studios, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has played havoc with the production of several major motion pictures, sending release schedules and launch projections into chaos.

Originally slated for a 2022 theatrical release, Minecraft has now been taken off the calendar completely, as Warner Bros. attempts to reschedule production and release dates for a number of upcoming heavy-hitters, including The Suicide Squad, The Batman, Dune, Black Adam, and the fourth entry in The Matrix franchise.

While this news might be disappointing for Minecraft fans anticipating the world-building franchise's big screen adventure, they can at least take heart that the brand remains incredibly strong. Summer will see the recently announced "Caves & Cliffs" expansion added to the game, while sister title Minecraft Dungeons also has new DLC on the way. Add to that the anticipated appearance of Steve and Alex in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and things are looking pretty cosy for the residents of blocko-land.

The Batman delayed as Warner Bros. shuffles calendar [The Hollywood Reporter]

Minecraft movie pushed beyond its 2022 release date screenshot



Ubisoft hit For Honor is coming to next-gen consoles with a free upgrade and a full progression import

For Honor was released all the way back in 2017, but Ubisoft Montreal has been steadily supporting it since then, to the point where it's outlasted many other similar online games.

It's kind of Ubisoft's thing lately, a service they've also extended to long-running titles like Rainbow Six Siege. So it was kind of inevitable for them to announce that For Honor would come to the next-generation, and the transition is going to be fairly smooth.

Ubisoft announced the news on Twitch, noting that the Xbox Series S version of the game is targeting 1080p resolution, with PS5 and Xbox Series X hitting 4K. "Current-gen game owners on PS4 and Xbox One" will be able to play For Honor for free, with the option to transfer over "all of your purchases and inventory automatically." 60FPS gameplay is being targeted "for all next-gen consoles in early December."

These updates will be playable "at each respective console launch," so November 10 for Xbox Series S/X and November 12 for PS5. The unavailability of 60FPS gameplay right away isn't great, but it's probably a casualty of the current global climate. A month isn't that long to wait, especially if you're upgrading for free.

For Honor [Twitch]

Ubisoft hit For Honor is coming to next-gen consoles with a free upgrade and a full progression import screenshot



Check out the surprisingly hard rockin' intro to Go! Go! 5 Jigen Game Neptune reVerse

Compile Heart has released the intro movie to the next release to Go! Go! 5 Jigen Game Neptune reVerse, the next release in the Hyperdimension Neptunia anime RPG franchise, which also happen to be Nep-Nep's first foray into next-gen gaming!

To be honest, it's a little disappointing, consisting of no more than a bunch of hi-tech screen wipes and some standard character portraits. But at least our ears can enjoy the guitar-heavy vibes of title track "For Share!!", composed and arranged by araKEN and performed by Japanese techno-rockers Zwei.

Check out the surprisingly hard rockin' intro to Go! Go! 5 Jigen Game Neptune reVerse screenshot

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Capcom says Monster Hunter Rise is running on a regular Switch, is mum on the existence of a Switch Pro

I don't think it's unbelievable that Monster Hunter Rise is running on a standard Switch, but a lot of folks are skeptical. Well, producer Ryōzō Tsujimoto recently spoke to Eurogamer to clear the air on that.

According to Tsujimoto, everything we saw these past few weeks was running on a standard Switch. When asked about a potential Switch Pro, he stated: "Well, obviously we have no idea whatsoever what the plans would be in that direction, but even at the moment you actually have two different Switch hardwares you're targeting - you've got the the original Switch which has the docking mode, so that's something we've already borne in mind to make sure that the game isn't making any undue assumptions on the hardware owned by the player."

"That direction" that he's referring to is a Switch Pro. While it could happen at some point (or he's bound to an NDA), Monster Hunter Rise was in development for way longer than the Pro would have been in the works. Tsujimoto also clarifies that Rise has been in the works for "about four years," and the company specifically asked the director of Monster Hunter Generations to make a title "for the next portable," which would eventually be the Switch.

He cites porting the RE Engine to Switch as a "new challenge," but given that it is a first-party engine after all, the developers know those challenges inside and out and were able to adapt. Tsujimoto says that in the end, they hit a target of "a comfortable 30 frames per second."

So basically, it was tough to get working, but they did end up finishing the job. While that stable framerate is still up for debate in the final version, Capcom seems to have "figured out" the Switch at this point.

Monster Hunter Rise looks like it'll be the best of both worlds [Nintendo]

Capcom says Monster Hunter Rise is running on a regular Switch, is mum on the existence of a Switch Pro screenshot



GONNER2 launches on Nintendo Switch October 22

Art in Heart's beautiful-but-quirky roguelike GONNER2 has received a launch date for its Nintendo Switch release. The surreal adventure will hit the eShop on October 22.

GONNER2 launches on Nintendo Switch October 22 screenshot

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Sega vaguely mentions that we could eventually see a Dreamcast Mini and now we all want one

A theoretical Dreamcast Mini loaded with Sonic Adventure, the hard-to-find Power Stone titles, Crazy Taxi, Jet Grind Radio, SoulCalibur, Marvel vs. Capcom 2 and more? It sounds like a dream come true.

Well, a lot of folks have been anticipating the march of more minis for a while, it's just a matter of when. And while Sega has mentioned the Dreamcast Mini by name, they've significantly moved the goalposts on "when."

Speaking to Famitsu (as translated by Nintendo Life), Sega creative producer Yosuke Okunari notes that in their quest of "considering" more concepts like the Genesis Mini, ideas like the SG1000 and Dreamcast have been brought up. Okunari also says that while the Game Gear Micro is "only available in Japan," the next mini project will have a "much greator" scope, and likely arrive worldwide.

This is all very "planning stages" stuff here, as Okunari explains that even if there was another micro-console, it would be at least another year out due to the "high cost and time" factors involved. So you're saying there's a chance?

Sega [Famitsu via Nintendo Life]

Sega vaguely mentions that we could eventually see a Dreamcast Mini and now we all want one screenshot



Mortal Kombat 11 owners will receive a free upgrade on next-gen konsoles

In addition to this morning's reveal of Kombat Pack 2, bringing Mileena, Rain, and John Rambo to the Mortal Kombat 11 roster. NetherRealm Studios has also announced that all current and new PS4 and Xbox One MK 11 players will receive a free upgrade to the respective next-gen platforms.

The next-gen version of Mortal Kombat 11 will feature various visual improvements, "significantly-improved" load times, and krisp 4K resolution. Kross-play will be supported between new and current gen platforms, so the playerbase will fortunately remain whole - a vital element of this endeavour.

Mortal Kombat 11 owners will receive a free upgrade on next-gen konsoles screenshot

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Mileena, Rain, and Rambo confirmed for Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate, also coming to PS5 and Xbox Series X

NetherRealm Studios has revealed the existence of Kombat Pack 2 for its spine-ripping fighter Mortal Kombat 11. The new DLC bundle will see the return of MK veterans Mileena and Rain, alongside a very different kind of "veteran", action movie legend John J. Rambo.

John Rambo, star of the hyper-violent Rambo movies will be joining fellow action movie legends The Terminator and Robocop in MK 11. A new trailer reveals that NRS has secured both the likeness and the voice of Hollywood legend Sylvester Stallone. I can't help but smile at this ridiculous addition, even if many in the MK faithful - myself included - are bored of MK 11's lame love affair with guns.

Mileena, Rain, and Rambo confirmed for Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate, also coming to PS5 and Xbox Series X screenshot

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Silent Hill: Shattered Memories writer currently pitching a sequel

Sam Barlow, the writer and designer behind 2009 Silent Hill entry Shattered Memories, has quietly revealed that he is currently in the process of pitching a follow-up to the mind-fucking horror title.

Speaking on Twitter, Barlow mentioned that he was asked about the possibility of a Shattered Memories follow-up during a recent interview, but was unable to answer the question as he is in the process of pitching that very idea. Barlow also notes that this pitch is not his upcoming "Project A" title, currently in development at Half Mermaid Studios, which is a different game entirely.

Of course, Barlow pitching a sequel  does not guarantee that a sequel is getting made, but it will sure raise the hopes of the Silent Hill faithful, who have been very frustrated by the lack of news from Konami in recent years, despite numerous rumours and whispers within the industry. Shattered Memories is certainly one of the more tightly held entries within the Silent Hill franchise, and a follow-up, from the original designer no less, would be a grim delight.

In the meantime, don't forget that Silent Hill 4: The Room is now available on PC via GOG.com

Silent Hill: Shattered Memories writer currently pitching a sequel screenshot

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Those wonderful Pikmin short movies are now on YouTube

The recent Nintendo Treehouse Live deep dive into the upcoming Pikmin 3 Deluxe really sold me on picking up the title for Switch even if I still have it for Wii U with most of the DLC. The local co-op, advanced control options, and playable side stories are more than enough reason for me to jump back into it. I l adore the original on the Wii U enough to drop some cash on the three short animated films Nintendo produced to promote its release.

As we told you a few days ago, Nintendo is delisting those videos from the eShop. Thankfully, unlike items that get delisted from other Nintendo digital distribution platforms, these are more readily available now that they're finding a second life on YouTube.

Those wonderful Pikmin short movies are now on YouTube screenshot

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Pre-ordering Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity comes with this Guardian keychain

Although not really a mainline Zelda game, Nintendo is kind of pulling out all the stops when promoting Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity. There's a bonus where Breath of the Wild save data grants a special training sword. There's amiibo support because Nintendo doesn't miss opportunities to sell these physical add-ons. Now there's a physical pre-order offer that might be too cool to miss out on.

Pre-ordering Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity from GameStop will get you a Mystery Guardian keychain. Here's what it looks like:

Pre-ordering Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity comes with this Guardian keychain screenshot

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Mafia gets a lot more stylish and moody with its new noir mode

Mafia starts with protagonist Tommy Angelo spilling his guts to a detective in a diner. It feels so wonderfully 1930s that it's almost a crime the scene has any color. Mafia has a mood about it, and sometimes vibrant hues aren't in service of the overall vibe.

That changes today as developer Hangar 13 has pushed an update to Mafia: Definitive Edition that adds a noir mode. Switching to noir mode simply turns the gameplay and cutscenes black-and-white. Just as Ghost of Tsushima paid homage to Kurosawa, Mafia will pay tribute to the likes of White Heat and Double Indemnity. It's important to look up to someone.

This first update brings about a few other quality of life changes. There are new HUD options where you can switch the objective marker off, turn enemy markers off on the mini-map, turn in-world and mini-map navigation features off. There's also a Minimal HUD option that hides pretty much every piece of guidance. Lastly, Hangar 13 added some content to the Free Ride mode but declined to detail what's different. It seems as though some cars have new hidden features.

This free update is available now on all platforms. It doesn't, however, address the impossibility of the big chapter 5 race on classic difficulty. That's by design though because it's meant to be frustrating just like in the 2002 game. Throwing it into noir mode will probably switch things up as you fail time and time again. Variety is the spice of life. 

The First Post-Release Update for Mafia: Definitive Edition Adds Noir Mode, New HUD Options, And More [Mafia] 

Mafia gets a lot more stylish and moody with its new noir mode screenshot

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Does your PC have the firepower to run the Black Ops Cold War beta?

Sun's out, guns out. Beta's out, PC minimum and recommended specs out. Not as catchy, twice as important.

The Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War open beta is nearly upon us and that means it's time to figure out if your rig can handle the rigors of war. Activision has revealed the beta's minimum and recommended specs (which should serve more or less as the full game's final specs with the possible exception of storage space).

Here's what's needed to just get the Cold War beta running:

Does your PC have the firepower to run the Black Ops Cold War beta? screenshot

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Steam Game Festival returns with way too many demos to play before Tuesday

Steam Game Festival is quickly becoming one of my favorite facets of PC gaming. The limited-time showcase returned today on Steam with hundreds – and they do mean hundreds – of game demos to sort through, download, and try to play before they go away on Tuesday, October 13 at 10:00 a.m. PT.

Like finding fresh games in general, it can be overwhelming to figure out what's worth your energy. That was true for prior festivals and it's still true for this week's Steam Game Festival: Autumn Edition.

Aside from leaning on your friends (and maybe some in-the-know Destructoid readers), it's worth running through your wishlist and skimming the Most Downloaded list for ideas. This time, the criteria for applicable games is slightly stricter – they're all "set to be released within the next six months."

These are my Autumn festival highlights:

Some of the picks aren't "new" so much as they're "new to Steam," and some of them probably aren't worth anything more than a morbid-curiosity-fueled demo playthrough, so keep that in mind.

Let us know if you see anything else worth downloading. I'm sure there's plenty!

Steam Game Festival returns with way too many demos to play before Tuesday screenshot

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Marvel is publishing a Spider-Man: Miles Morales prequel

When it comes to Marvel's Spider-Man, developer Insomniac isn't the only one writing Miles Morales' story. This PS5 launch game is getting a prequel to provide some backstory.

Marvel has revealed that it's teaming up with Titan Books to publish a prequel novel to Spider-Man: Miles Morales. Titled Wings of Fury, this arc is being written by Slay author Brittany Morris. Here's the description: "Wings of Fury features Miles Morales coming to terms with what it means to be Spider-Man. A mix-up with the law leaves Miles questioning everything and when Vulture and his accomplice Starling unleash experimental tech on Marvel's New York, Miles must decide what kind of hero he wants to be."

But words are hard and reading is for nerds. Maybe the officially licensed art book is more your speed. Spider-Man: Miles Morales -- Art of the Game is a hardcover coffee table book that includes "concept art and in-game renderings including characters, locations, tech, gadgets, Spider suits and much more." Much easier on the brain.

Wings of Fury will launch on November 10, just a couple of days before the game. The art book is slated for February 2021. Images of both covers can be found in the gallery below. Swing on down there, that's a Spider-Man pun.

Two New Companion Books Announced for 'Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales' [Marvel]

Marvel is publishing a Spider-Man: Miles Morales prequel screenshot

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John Wick Hex brings its beautiful ballet of murder to Switch

Two rules, everyone knows 'em: No killing in the hotel, and all good games have to come to Switch. Follow those and everyone stays happy. Deviate and we're gonna have problems.

John Wick Hex is getting ported to the major platforms it isn't already on. Developer Mike Bithell just announced John Wick Hex for Switch and Xbox One. It's also breaking free from its Epic Games Store exclusivity and coming to Steam. All this action goes down on December 4.

For those who missed it a year ago (tomorrow is its one-year anniversary), John Wick Hex is a smart adaption of the stylish action that made the movies widely beloved. Rather than straight mimic John Wick's gunplay, Hex turns it into a strategy game. It's not turn-based, though. Instead, time is the resource, as each action takes a preset number of seconds. Spend too much time on anything and you're likely to catch a bullet. It's a wonderful dance.

Just like when it launched on Epic and PS4, John Wick Hex will be $20 on Switch, Steam, and Xbox. You're not an assassin, so gold coins won't get you anywhere. You gotta pay with straight cash, homie.

John Wick Hex brings its beautiful ballet of murder to Switch screenshot



Save $10 on a custom Xbox controller before Design Lab disappears

Xbox Design Lab was quietly one of the neatest offerings of the Xbox One generation. Microsoft built a portal where users could create their own controllers and every component's look could be customized. No longer restricted to official models on store shelves, players could design a controller to look however they wanted.

Design Lab is going offline for a bit. On October 14, Microsoft is temporarily pulling the plug on the whole Design Lab service and it won't return until sometime next year. Presumably, it's a shift in production so that Microsoft can sell the new slightly-revamped Xbox Series X controllers.

Microsoft is sending off the old Design Lab with one last bang. If you're fine with the old model of Xbox controller (which will still function perfectly fine on Xbox Series S/X), you can get $10 off a custom controller. There's no need for a coupon or anything; the discount automatically applies on the Design Lab site. The offer is good until October 14, which is when Design Lab disappears for a bit.

If you're on the fence about current- and next-gen controllers, here are the upgrades for the Xbox Series X's gamepad. It has: A hybrid D-pad instead of the cross design, a dedicated share button, rubberized textured grips around the back, and a USC-C charging port. It's mostly minimal stuff, which is why Microsoft isn't raising the prices for controllers on Xbox Series X.

So, go get yourself $10 off a custom controller if aesthetic is more important to you than minimally-improved functionality. Or, just put that $60 toward the new Shock Blue Xbox Series X controller. That thing has aesthetic for days.

Xbox Design Lab [Microsoft]

Save $10 on a custom Xbox controller before Design Lab disappears screenshot

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Mario Kart Tour reflects on its first year with new anniversary tour

Believe it or not, it's been one whole year since the launch of Nintendo's pocket-sized racer Mario Kart Tour. Widely criticised on release for its lackluster gameplay and heavy microtransaction and stingy gacha mechanics, Mario Kart Tour has nonetheless been a modest hit for Nintendo, still pulling in millions of dollars in revenue.

To celebrate its first full year of release, Nintendo has dropped the green flag on a special "Anniversary Tour" event, which is live in-game right now. This event sees the return of five of Mario Kart Tour's most-popular courses, along with a slew of returning racers, specially selected from events held over the past 12 months.

The Anniversary Tour will also features multiple login bonuses, extra ruby rewards, store discounts, and special "Coins Aplenty" challenges to be held every Tuesday and Saturday for the entire duration of the event. You can check out some of the returning content in the trailer below.

Mario Kart Tour is available now on iOS and Android devices.

Mario Kart Tour reflects on its first year with new anniversary tour screenshot

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Star Wars: Squadrons won't have any post-launch content

Ironically enough, you have to go all the way to the hard vacuum of outer space for this breath of fresh air: Star Wars: Squadrons isn't trying to be a live service game. That's right, an entry in a major media property from a major publisher isn't trying to monopolize your time with an endless roadmap.

In an interview with UploadVR, creative director Ian Frazier explains how EA took an "old school approach" to development on Star Wars: Squadrons. "Never say never, so to speak, but as far as our philosophy goes we're not trying to treat the game as a live service," Frazier says. "We don't want to say, 'It's almost done!' and then dribble out more of it over time, which to be honest is how most games work these days."

Frazier elaborates that the message behind Star Wars: Squadrons is "You've paid the $40, this is the game and it's entirely self-contained. We're not planning to add more content, this is the game, and we hope you understand the value proposition."

My, how far we've come that this constitutes an old school view of big market video game consumerism. It's nice to start a game knowing that truly experiencing it won't require making it a part of your weekly schedule for years to come. Sometimes no DLC is a thousand times more enticing than three years worth of DLC.

Don't think even for a second that this isn't an edge case, though. If this weren't a semi-budget title in a semi-niche genre (with the neatest version being on a mostly-niche platform), it'd have just as much post-launch content as Battlefront 2.

EA Has 'No Plans For Star Wars: Squadrons DLC, New Modes, or Oculus Quest Port [UploadVR]

Star Wars: Squadrons won't have any post-launch content screenshot

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Desperados III releases second DLC mission 'Five Steps Ahead'

THQ Nordic and Mimimi Games have released the second part of Desperados III's DLC expansion, Money for the Vultures. Part two, titled "Five Steps Ahead," is available to purchase now as part of the strategy title's season pass.

In Five Steps Ahead, John Cooper, Doc McCoy, and the rest of the gang travel to Louisiana to reunite with Isabelle, following her wedding day shenanigans. There, our hombres will reunite to visit a brand new locale in the Bayou, aiming to take down the latest dirtbag charged with leading the DeVitt family.

Desperados III releases second DLC mission 'Five Steps Ahead' screenshot

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The Walking Dead's 'Derl' is coming to Brawhalla, but where's Merle?

In case you haven't noticed, Brawlhalla is still trucking along since its original 2017 release, with tons of Ubisoft-bankrolled corporate synergy to boot. It's hosted characters from the Hellboy universe, as well as WWE, Adventure Time, Tomb Raider and Shovel Knight. Now it's welcoming another gargantuan property into the mix: The Walking Dead.

Like the Magic: The Gathering cross-promotion before it, this tie-in is clearly modeled after the characters from the AMC show. Daryl ("Derl"), Rick and Michonne are all coming to the party, as crossover skins for Ember, Barraza and Koji respectively. All of them also have Magic cards, no doubt a sign of how popular they are in the television series (particularly Norman Reedus' Daryl, who will probably be the last human standing in this universe). Sadly, this brother Merle is left out in the cold: as he has been for some time now. I can't believe we're seven years removed from the Merlin Derle game.

The trio will come to Brawlhalla on October 14, which is coupled with an in-game event that essentially works as a horde mode, but you're fighting walkers. The prison map from seasons 3 and 4 of the show (man they dragged that locale out) is also in. At this point there are more than 50 characters to choose from in Brawlhalla.

Brawlhalla [Twitter]

The Walking Dead's 'Derl' is coming to Brawhalla, but where's Merle? screenshot

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PlayStation Now welcomes the Halloween season with MediEvil, Days Gone, and Friday the 13th

PlayStation Now is getting into the creepy Halloween spirit - SPIRIT, LIKE A GHOST - with the reveal of several horror-themed titles, available right now as part of the cloud gaming service.

The first title set to give you the willies is SIE Bend's survival horror title Days Gone. Released in 2019 and receiving far more success than anyone had given it credit for, Days Gone sees players in the role of very-sad drifter Deacon St. John, as he searches for his missing wife in what remains of post-apocalyptic Oregon. Using his wits, crafting skills, and any handy blunt instrument, St. John must traverse the miserable landscape while keeping one eye out for the mutated populace known as "Freakers." No, really.

PlayStation Now welcomes the Halloween season with MediEvil, Days Gone, and Friday the 13th screenshot

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Today's Nintendo Treehouse Live is all about Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity and Pikmin 3 Deluxe

Nintendo streamed a fresh Treehouse Live segment today with a "deep dive" into Pikmin 3 Deluxe and a gameplay showcase for Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity. If you want to watch the extended broadcast above, you're free to do so, but I've split the news up for each Switch game if you just want a recap.

What's new for Pikmin 3 Deluxe

Nintendo confirmed optional motion/gyro control support for Pikmin 3 Deluxe along with an Ultra-Spicy difficulty mode (with a cap of 60 Pikmin in the field and other "challenging elements"), the creature-tracking Piklopedia, and Side Stories with Captain Olimar and Louie. The level shown on-stream was Day 4: Tundra in Olimar's Assignment, a treasure-collecting time trial with local co-op support.

Pikmin 3 Deluxe Side Stories

As a reminder, the main story is fully playable in co-op and there's also a head-to-head Bingo mode.

Players who clear the eShop demo of Pikmin 3 Deluxe will be able to start the full game on Ultra-Spicy. This might go without saying, but your save data from the demo will transfer. Look for it tonight.

What's new for Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity

So help us, there are hidden Koroks to track down in Age of Calamity. No more Gold Skulltulas.

Nintendo showed off the world map, too. In between main missions, you'll be able to jump to a bunch of locations across Hyrule to level up characters, strengthen weapons, and unlock other "things."

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity map

Across the map, merchants and side-missions are your chance to earn and spend supplies – a major facet of Hyrule Warriors and the reason I'm going to dump hundreds of hours into this game. On-stream, Link gave materials to a "youth from Hateno Village" to unlock a Two-Handed bonus combo.

Amusingly, Nintendo reassured everyone by saying that weapons don't break like in Breath of the Wild. Instead, you'll fuse weapons into each other to improve stats at the Blacksmith. Swords, spears, sledgehammers, and the almighty Soup Ladle ("it actually packs quite the wallop") were shown today.

Age of Calamity Hinox

The stream also demonstrated a fight against Hinox with Impa. Is she the best or is she the best?

Unlike the Pikmin 3 segment, which was a lot of old ground if you're even remotely familiar with the series, the entire Age of Calamity showcase is worth watching. Urbosa and Zelda had time to shine.

The last Nintendo Treehouse Live presentation – the one with Paper Mario: The Origami King and Bakugan of all things – struggled with frequent technical hiccups and cross-talking. There was undeniable room for improvement. As far as today's games go, Pikmin and Hyrule Warriors are a nice duo. I want 'em both. That said, the quality of today's Treehouse showcase was also rocky at times.

These aren't system-defining titles by any means, but I'm stoked to have them this year. Given that they're releasing on October 30 and November 20 respectively, I hope Nintendo doesn't hold back.

Remember Nintendo Direct days? I miss their succinctness.

Today's Nintendo Treehouse Live is all about Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity and Pikmin 3 Deluxe screenshot

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Smash Ultimate's next big balance patch will arrive with the new Minecraft additions

Although we generally assumed it to be so, it's nice to have confirmation that Nintendo will deploy Super Smash Bros. Ultimate version 9.0.0 on the same day that Minecraft's Steve and Alex are entering the fray.

Revealed via a tweet, the patch will usher in "fighter adjustments" (read: balances), and screw up your replay data, as usual, unless you convert them. Nintendo of Europe notes that the date is October 14: which is October 13 in the US, given the time zones of when Nintendo deploys evening Smash Ultimate patches.

Over the weekend, Nintendo put up a detailed 45-minute rundown of what the patch will entail, which you can view below. It's insane how much work Sakurai and his team did to ensure that Steve/Alex fit the Smash universe. So many animations look like they were straight-up lifted from Minecraft proper, and Sakurai seemed to really care about how these characters fit in this universe.

While a lot of the breakdown below is more inside baseball for hardcore fans, it really is worth a watch if you're curious to see how the blocky character was adapted for a fighter.

Nintendo of Europe [Twitter]

Smash Ultimate's next big balance patch will arrive with the new Minecraft additions screenshot

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Fire Emblem Heroes gets spooky 'n' kooky in Halloween update

It's never like Fire Emblem Heroes to miss a seasonal celebration, and Halloween is no exception. Nintendo's mobile battler will be releasing its newest update later this week, bringing a quartet of costumed fools to the gacha title's massive roster of warriors.

The Dragon's Harvest update will see the arrival of Awakening's Robin, Mystery of the Emblem's Xane, Path of Radiance' Dheginsea, and finally Harmonized Heroes Tiki & Ninian, all of whom are sporting very cute Halloween costumes. Dheginsea makes for a formidable vampire, and Xane is a colourful trickster, while the girls also look great as... umm... these things... a werewolf, I guess? And a ghost and a devil?

Fire Emblem Heroes gets spooky 'n' kooky in Halloween update screenshot

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Here's a full rundown of World of Warcraft Shadowlands' Pre-Patch, coming October 13

Big changes are coming to World of Warcraft, and they're happening before the Shadowlands expansion. On October 13, actually, when the pre-patch hits.

The most important thing to note is easily the "level squish," which is bringing level 120 players down to 50, to make progression more meaningful (read: leveling will grant you new abilities and talents).

You can also change your gender and appearance at the barbershop at will, which grants you more customization options, like tattoos for dwarves and less/more bone exposure for undead. Corrupted gear will be cleansed when Shadowlands hits and season four will end.

So that's all of the housekeeping stuff. In terms of content, you're called into action to combat an undead invasion in Icecrown. It's confirmed as a "limited time event" with special rewards: aiming to end around when Shadowlands launches. Par for the course! I hope that the "tee-up" pre-patch questline has some meaningful beats.

Shadowlands Pre-Expansion [Battle.net]

Here's a full rundown of World of Warcraft Shadowlands' Pre-Patch, coming October 13 screenshot

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Resident Evil movie reboot reveals cast and plot outline

Constantin Film has announced its intention to create a brand new Resident Evil movie, one that will seemingly ignore all of the events of previous films past to adapt an all-new cinematic story based on the legendary survival horror series.

Written and directed by 47 Meters Down's Johannes Roberts, the new movie will see the action return to the iconic locale of Raccoon City, retelling the events of one grim night in the Spencer Mansion. Constantin Film has unveiled a cast of characters, including Upload's Robbie Amell as Chris Redfield, Maze Runner's Kaya Scodelario as Claire Redfield, Avan Jogia as Leon Kennedy, and Hannah John-Kamen - who you will remember as Ghost in Ant-Man and the Wasp - in the heralded role of Jill Valentine. A real all-star set of Resi heroes right there.

Speaking to Deadline, Roberts said of the project "I really wanted to go back to the original first two games and re-create the terrifying visceral experience I had when I first played them whilst at the same time telling a grounded human story about a small dying American town that feels both relatable and relevant to today's audiences."

The new film will be produced by Robert Kulzer, who was also the producer for the 2002 Resident Evil movie, as well as sequels Resident Evil: Extinction, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, and Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, thus the new film may not entirely eschew the style of its previous cinematic universe - for better or worse.

Resident Evil is currently in pre-production at Constantin Film.

Resident Evil movie reboot reveals cast and plot outline screenshot

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Super Nintendo World is opening in Japan in 2021, but a Mario cafe and store will debut next week

The world is pretty crazy right now, with some theme parks open and some...not so much. But Nintendo and Universal are still moving full speed ahead with Super Nintendo World of Japan, having gotten back on the construction horse earlier this year.

Now the fruits of their labor are seemingly ready to be unleashed, as Nintendo has just announced officially that Super Nintendo World will arrive in Osaka City in the spring of 2021. But before that grand opening, Nintendo will cut the ribbon for the Mario Cafe and Store, which is scheduled to be unleashed on October 16.

At that point guests can buy various Mario merch, as well as "Super Mushroom Drinks" (in a collectible cup) and fruit cream sodas (with mustache straws). Mario and Luigi cap cookies will also be on sale, and the tagline that the store is going for is "Whose Cap?" Cheeky. We know who owns that cap.

There is still no real timeline for when the other two Super Nintendo World theme parks will be finished (CA, FL); but given the restrictions in California, that park is in for a bumpy ride if it intends to still open in 2021.

Super Nintendo World will open in the spring of 2021 [Nintendo]

Super Nintendo World is opening in Japan in 2021, but a Mario cafe and store will debut next week screenshot

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Sony is ready to teardown the PS5 and show us what's inside

The PS5 is nearly ready to launch, and Sony is giving is the teardown video to prove it.

Just this morning the publishing giant gave us a full seven-minute rundown of the innards of the PS5, breaking it apart piece by piece. As Sony notes: you probably shouldn't try this at home without a technical background of some sort.

For the most part, this clip is for gearheads, and tells us a lot of what we already know. The PS5 is equipped with an x86-64-AMD Ryzen Zen 2 CPU, AMD Radeon RDNA 2-based graphics engine GPU, GDDR6 16GB of memory and liquid metal cooling. Sony is also sporting a Wi-Fi 6 antenna as well as USB-A and USB-C.

That look from Yasuhiro Ootri (VP, Mechanical Design at Sony) at the end is so satisfying. It's huge "bring it" energy.

Sony also shifted gears from a software standpoint, and took the opportunity to explain how trophies are changing over on the PlayStation Blog. In short, trophy ranges are going from 1-100 to 1-999. Once the update hits it'll automatically reconfigure your level (the example given is "12" will go to "the low 200s"). Platinum trophies will now be "more valuable" and "count more toward progression," and there will be a trophy level icon on the PS5 UI. All of this will shift over "later tonight."

Simple stuff, but exciting prospects for trophy hunters. The next generation is just over a month away at this point.

Sony is ready to teardown the PS5 and show us what's inside screenshot

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Destructoid wants to know: What's your dream gaming contest prize?

Questions for you. Let's say, you know ... hypothetically, Destructoid will be giving away a $3000-$5000 giveaway this holiday season.  What would the ideal prize be?

Does your tender heart lust for an RTX 3090 (or is that just a crazy CPU bottleneck), or a full-on PS5 with every accessory and launch game, and/or the new Xbox Part Deux X? Maybe one of those newfangled LG 120Hz 4K TVs?  Or if you are outside the continental US, take the whole prize pot as cash (or have the option to decide later and pay down your college loan out of guilt?). Would you rather see us give away something else instead?

Are contests where one-winner-takes all more interesting to you, or are you more likely to care if there's 20 winners and the prize is less fabulous but easier to win?

What would you be willing to do to win it? Inquiring marketing lords want to know! 

Holler. Especially if you participated in another contest somewhere else recently, what advice would you give a person in the position to potentially make one person's wildest dreams come true?  WHAT MOVES YOUR LOINS, MAN?

Destructoid wants to know: What's your dream gaming contest prize? screenshot

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Report: Activision-Blizzard is set to close its France office

According to a report by Bloomberg, Activision-Blizzard is in the process of dissolving its office in Versailles, France, following what is described by the news outlet as "two years of turbulence."

Originally operated solely under Blizzard, the Versailles office's 400-strong staff were hit with hugely controversial layoffs in 2019, as a restructuring of Blizzard by Activision resulted in the loss of around 130 localised jobs. A long and drawn-out severance dispute with the government then left the office's staff and operations in a degree of limbo. Complicating matters, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic reportedly put an end to Blizzard's plan to relocate half of the Versailles team to London, and now it seems that the French headquarters may now be closed in its entirety.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, Activision-Blizzard neither confirmed nor denied the report. "In the context of our Versailles office, the management of Blizzard France has informed its employee representatives of a proposed project to reorganize its activitie," said a spokesperson. "Supporting our employees through this process is our number one priority. We are working through various processes related to this and a CSE meeting is scheduled for October 13th and 14th. Until then, as there is a prescribed legal process, we cannot provide further comment."

Staff members are expected to receive more concrete information regarding the future next week.

Activision-Blizzard closing France office - Report [GamesIndustry.biz / Bloomberg]

Report: Activision-Blizzard is set to close its France office screenshot

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Is the graphical difference between NBA 2K21 on PS4 to PS5 worth the $10 extra cost to you?

Another generation, another attempt to sell you on expensive hardware.

I mean, I'm always there. I've been there since I started shoveling snow and working at 15 years old to partake in the newest games. But some generational leaps are more exciting than others. The jury is still out on this coming gap, in part due to the $10 price hike on a lot of software.

NBA 2K21 was one of the first games to be announced to buck that trend. It's going to be $70 on newer consoles, with is chalked up to more visual polish, says its publisher. But now that it's really getting down to the wire and we have ample footage of both the PS4 and PS5 editions of the game, it's time to compare and contrast.

YouTuber BBallCreator 2K put up a really useful and quick video that does just that, which you can view below. It's interesting, as some of the different character models look great on PS5 just because the PS4 ones look fairly poor, but overall there's a ton of detail in the former version. You can also see a drastic upgrade in terms of lighting when the camera shifts to an aerial view around 30 seconds in.

Like most things, they need to be seen in person to be believed. Hopefully the PS5 version is actually technically sound, and can hold these visuals with a proper framerate. With some games seemingly making us choose, these upgrades might not be as enticing. Also, does anyone else think 'Bron and the boys will take it on Friday?

Is the graphical difference between NBA 2K21 on PS4 to PS5 worth the $10 extra cost to you? screenshot

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Contest: Spoop your pants with Darksburg on Steam

In today's contest you can win horror roguelite title Darksburg for Steam!

It's finally October, which means I get to feature lots of fun Halloweeny titles all month long! Or until I run out. Whichever comes first.

Today, I've got a fun one! Meet Darksburg, a fun roguelike Gauntlet-esque title which just launched out of Early Access. We've got some Steam copies available, so start off your Halloween season with a bang!

Contest: Spoop your pants with Darksburg on Steam screenshot

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What's in your wallet? It could be Razer's light-up card

Razer is no stranger to making products that are mobile. Its line of gaming laptops is highly regarded. A few years ago, Razer introduced its own smartphone. The newest venture will fit right alongside the phone as something people use all the time.

Razer and Visa have partnered up to introduce a prepaid payment method called the Razer Card. It functions just like any other prepaid card, in that you load it up with cash in order to use it. There are three versions of the Razer Card: a digital version that makes use of a Razer cash app; a physical standard card; and a physical premium card that features a light-up Razer logo.

Because you're all wondering (and because the easy reference is there): No, it's not RGB.

There's incentive to pick up the Razer Card outside of general brand allegiance. This card offers 5% cash back on items purchased through Razer's store, and 1% cash back on all other purchases (uncapped). There's also the opportunity to earn rewards (and this is very vaguely phrased) "based on tasks and everyday transactions." It's more aggressive for beta members, as they get 10% back on store purchases along with the chance to earn $2,000 worth of Razer gear.

It's not the best card on the market, but it's not aimed at adults with established credit. Razer's Fintech arm is trying to establish the world's first global youth bank and the Razer Card is a major part of those plans. With that in mind, unlimited 1% cash back on a prepaid debit card is about as good as it gets.

However, this isn't something most of you can just jump into -- at least not yet. The Razer Card beta is currently only available in Singapore and only open to 1,337 participants. The beta is expected to last three months before the program becomes more widely available. That being said, there are no firm indications when (or even if) the Razer Card will expand outside of Singapore. It's your best bet if you really need an ostentatious card in your wallet, though.

Razer Fintech and Visa Unveil New Prepaid Card to Transform Digital Payments Experience for Youths and Millennials in Singapore [Razer]

What's in your wallet? It could be Razer's light-up card screenshot

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You can play Overwatch for free next week with Nintendo Switch Online

If you've had your fill of Super Mario Bros. 35,  heads up: Nintendo is rolling out another one of its infrequent Nintendo Switch Online membership perks. For a limited time, Overwatch will be free to play.

To partake, just grab Overwatch from the eShop and play as much as your schedule allows between October 13 at 11:00 a.m. Pacific and October 20 at 11:59 p.m. This Nintendo Switch Online Game Trial contains the "entire game," so you'll want to set aside 12GB for the download. Progress carries over.

I imagine most of us know how we feel about Overwatch by now, but if you're curious about the game at large – or you just want to see how the Switch version in particular handles itself – go do your thing.

It's honestly bumming me out how disconnected I feel from Blizzard right now. I hope Diablo IV is good.

@NintendoAmerica [Twitter]

You can play Overwatch for free next week with Nintendo Switch Online screenshot

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Watch Dogs: Legion has a BattleBots-like robo-spider deathpit mode

There are about a dozen possible takeaways from Ubisoft announcing Watch Dogs: Legion's post-launch content plans. Maybe you'd like to focus on the fact that some is free and some is paid-for. Or, you might zero in on the fact that the protagonists from the first two games show up in the story DLC.

Me? I'd like to shine that spotlight on the unlicensed BattleBots multiplayer mode.

Soon after launch, Watch Dogs: Legion is getting a PvP mode called Spider-Bot Arena. It's an eight-player deathmatch where everyone takes control of a mechanical arachnid. Hop, shoot, and destroy. What a tangled web we weave.

That's just one reveal in this very detailed video. Let's tackle the rest in bullet-point style:

Watch Dogs: Legion has a BattleBots-like robo-spider deathpit mode screenshot

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Former Borderlands and Torchlight devs establish studio for next-gen RPG

ProbablyMonsters, a company that scouts and establishes game development studios, has announced that it is in the process of putting together a brand new team. This as-yet-unnamed outfit is staffed by developers who have previously worked on popular franchises such as Borderlands and Torchlight.

Among the key players included in this new venture are Runic Games founders John Dunbar and Marsh Lefler, Borderlands level designer Patrick Blank, and former Perfect World developer Allen Fong. As a unit, these four individuals had instrumental roles in the production of 2009 fantasy RPG Torchlight.

The new studio is the third company to be established under the ProbablyMonsters umbrella, following Cauldron Studios and Firewalk Studios, and is already in the early stages of preparing its first title: a co-op RPG developed for next-gen platforms. ProbablyMonsters states that the new studio already has a workforce of over 150 people. The team are planning to move into new headquarters in Washington once it is deemed safe to do so, given the challenges of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

ProbablyMonsters establishes third studio [Gematsu]

Former Borderlands and Torchlight devs establish studio for next-gen RPG screenshot

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