Well, it has been something of a whirlwind today when it comes to the Xbox side of the news. Not only was the shocking delay of Halo Infinite into 2021 announced, Microsoft also seemingly decided to give the launch month for the Xbox Series X out of nowhere, confirming the system would, in fact, release in November. It was a weird day, made even weirder by the fact that despite getting a month, we still have no full launch date. It seems both Sony and Microsoft are dragging this out for as long as possible, but some leaks could shine an unintended light on that.
Tom Warren of The Verge took to his official Twitter to say he'd gotten a tip from a tipster the controller for the Xbox Series S/X had arrived with a 'don't open before November 6th' message. If you recall, something like this popped up yesterday with a leak of the same controller and the warranty that pointed to that same date.
Now, as we mentioned in that article, it isn't unusual that controllers hit the market officially before the console itself. Since we now know for a fact that the Xbox Series X will release in November, it's not outside the realm of possibility that the controllers could release a week or more before Microsoft's system. We will just have to wait and see.
Xbox Series X may launch on November 6th. A tipster tells me boxes of the new controllers have a do not open date of November 6th on them. These controllers leaked earlier this week https://t.co/oyhlbg2SKo pic.twitter.com/dq096shN7L
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) August 11, 2020
While The Legend of Zelda franchise has always been one of Nintendo's key series, it's hard to deny that Breath of the Wild elevated it to a far different level when it launched with Nintendo's latest system, the Switch, and helped bring it to incredible heights. We're now patiently waiting for the announced sequel to come, and it looks like there could be more on the way.
As discovered by Twitter user NaZ, Nintendo just filed a new trademark for the Legend of Zelda that covers a lot of different cases for the game. As NaZ and others are speculating, this could be in relation to the series' 35th Anniversary next year. It's also interesting to note that they also recently filed a new trademark for Ocarina of Time.
As highlighted below, this is pretty close to a big trademark for the Mario series that Nintendo filed last year. There is an alleged collection of Mario titles rumored to be coming this year to celebrate that franchise's 35th anniversary. If that ends up being true, then we probably have a very good idea of what to expect from them Zelda-wise next year. Keep your fingers crossed those Mario titles come flooding in.
Out of nowhere, The Legend of Zelda JUST registered a NEW trademark this July, and it covers a LOT of classes. This is 99% for next year's Zelda 35 anniversary.
Mario got a trademark JUST like this one last year, most likely for Mario's 2020 anniversary.
Red: mario pic.twitter.com/BE0Vff4FM8
— NaZ (@NaZyrus07) August 11, 2020
Many moons ago, the Splinter Cell series was one of Ubisoft's premier series. The stealthy action game franchise helped to define two different console generations with secret action Sam Fisher, but has gone dark since 2013. Since then, the character has been popping up in various ways. He was a guest in Ghost Recon twice, he's getting his own Netflix anime series apparently, and now it seems he'll be coming to another Tom Clancy-based game.
Ubisoft revealed a new trailer revealing that Sam would be coming to Rainbow Six Siege. This was somewhat teased a few months ago when it was said that guest characters could be coming in as agents at some point. Fisher looks and sounds quite a bit different here, looks like a potentially much younger rendition of the character.
There are rumors out there that a new Splinter Cell game is in the works, but much like the Prince of Persia series, it feels like it's wishful thinking at this point, but you never know. Clearly, Fisher isn't retired just yet. The full reveal for him in Rainbow Six Siege will come on August 16th.
There were a lot of great franchises that began in the last generation of consoles that defined the era. Some made it successfully over to the current systems, and some didn't. One of the series in the latter part is Mass Effect. The sci-fi epic from BioWare was a favorite of many, but the follow up in this generation of consoles was lackluster. Since then, the franchise has been silent, though there's rumors flying around that a remastered version of the trilogy is coming by year's end. At this point, it's hard to say one way or another, but a lot of interesting things happening in the UK retailer scene could point to it being legit.
Apparently, some fans noticed in the list of upcoming games from UK retailer GAME of a game called N7 was listed as coming out September 27th. N7 is a significant moniker for Mass Effect. Not only that, they apparently were allowed to put a deposit down, which you can see below. As also detailed, as of today, the date on this deposit has been changed to October 30th. You can see the whole saga chronicled by Reddit user Waymantis through here.
Does it really mean anything? It's hard to say. Things like this do happen and ultimately these listings are taken down. But if the game is really still planned to come out this year as some rumors suggest, it would be likely to be revealed soon. Though, other rumors say it could be up to the end of the next fiscal year (March 31st, 2021) before we actually see it. Either way, fingers crossed that this is a sign that something is happening soon.
343 Industries' Halo Infinite may have been delayed into 2021 but Microsoft is surging forward with the Xbox Series X launch. It confirmed on Xbox Wire that the next-gen console would globally launch this November with "thousands of games to play, spanning four generations." This includes over 100 optimized titles.
Games like Gears 5, Watch Dogs: Legion, Yakuza: Like a Dragon and more were already confirmed to be optimized. However even Gears Tactics, which is still only available on PC, will be available though no release date has been provided for the console version. Other touted features include Direct X raytracing at launch, up to 120 frames per second gameplay, Quick Resume and so on.
The Xbox Series X has been rumored for a while now to launch in November, especially following the controller's limited warranty being leaked. Microsoft CFO Amy Hood outright confirmed the launch month so it's probably not the biggest surprise to see an official confirmation. As for when in November it will launch, stay tuned for more details in the coming weeks.
343 Industries has announced that Halo Infinite, originally slated to launch this holiday season with the Xbox Series X, has been delayed. It will now be releasing in 2021. According to a tweet by studio head Chris Lee, this was to ensure the team "had adequate time to deliver a Halo game experience that meets our vision."
Lee further stated that the delay was due to a number of development different challenges, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. While the development team has been working hard to solve these challenges, Lee said "It is not sustainable for the well-being of our team or the overall success of the game to ship it this holiday." As such, he acknowledged that the news would be disappointing for many but said that the additional time will "let us finish the critical work necessary to deliver the most ambitious Halo game ever at the quality we know our fans expect."
Halo Infinite recently saw its gameplay debut at the Xbox Games Showcase and garnered some mixed reactions. 343 Industries later confirmed that it was an early build, that too running on a PC that was "representative of the experience that players will have on Xbox Series X." More information will be revealed in the coming months, including multiplayer that was confirmed to be free to play and run at 120 frames per second. We'll see how the game's overall status fares heading into the new year.
Halo Infinite Development Update pic.twitter.com/TFZvXhRN9f
— Halo (@Halo) August 11, 2020
Co-op dinosaur hunter Second Extinction is still slated for Xbox Series X and Xbox One but it seems to be coming to PC first. Developer Systemic Reaction has announced that the shooter will be heading into Steam Early Access this September. Along with providing a better idea of the game's feel, early access will also serve as a means to test out and refine the War Effort model.
As explained to IGN, War Effort is basically a "community-driven environment" where new content "evolves over time." It's a live service experience that will bring new dinosaurs and missions to players. "War Effort tallies the stats of player matches and uses them to alter the threat level for future matches, meaning you'll take on various challenging levels of dinosaurs."
So for example, taking down dinosaurs in an area that's marked Threat Level 1 will see the next area having an elevated threat level. Threat Level 1 should be manageable alone but a three person team is recommended for Threat Level 3. Expect these to be tuned throughout early access.
"For us, Early Access is not just about what the community does, it's about how they do it. How are they coping with certain scenarios? What needs tuning? What do they want tuning? It's also an opportunity for us to find other ways to kill dinosaurs in other modes outside of missions, like a horde mode, and see what people like. It's a collaborative process and that is why we chose this route."
Systemic Reaction answered further queries via an FAQ on Steam. It said that Second Extinction will remain in early access for "as long as it takes. When the community is happy with the overall direction, and when we are ready to welcome more players to the party, we will leave Early Access."
Progress from early access will carry over into the full release as well, giving veterans a chance to "show off and strut around the community" at launch. As for launching on Xbox One and Xbox Series X, stay tuned for more details in the coming months.
Vanillaware's 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is finally coming to the West next month, offering gorgeous hand-painted environments and characters along with tactical mech combat. A new 20 minute gameplay video was released by PlayStation Underground, showcasing various aspects of the game including combat. Check it out below for a better idea of the mechanics.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim takes place in alternative history Japan and sees 13 different individuals caught up in the battle against invading kaiju. These characters have their own stories and backgrounds that intertwine throughout. However, there's also a time-traveling element which is showcased a bit in the video below.
As for the combat, it's an interesting mix of tactics and extensive dialogue conversations. So while you can take turns and blow up enemies, right down to manually directing shots, characters will also interact with each other in detailed portraits. It's an interesting take and works well with the aesthetic.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is out on September 22nd for PS4. It will include English voiceovers in a day one patch.
More than a year in early access, Hopoo Games' Risk of Rain 2 has finally launched. This is only for the PC version, which has also received update 1.0 with a new Survivor, new stage and the final boss. Check out the launch trailer below.
In terms of overall presentation, there's now a proper introductory cutscene and ending, complete with credits. The newest Survivor is the Captain who can take on foes at close and long range alike with a shotgun/rifle weapon. Two new monsters also await though you'll have to discover them for yourself.
New items and equipment have also been added, like Item Scrap, the Molten Perforator, Mired Urn, Defiant Gouge, Super Massive Leech and so on. The Scrapper has also been added as a new interactable. If that all wasn't enough, a Server Browser has also been added to help find games along with hosting them and changing around settings as seen fit.
Risk of Rain 2's 1.0 update will go live for consoles in the coming days so stay tuned in the meantime.
As noticed recently via PlayStation Trophies, Naughty Dog's The Last of Us Part 2 will be receiving a new difficulty in Grounded. It goes live on August 13th with a rather substantial update that also adds Permadeath mode. Check out the trailer below.
Grounded should be familiar to fans of the first game, limiting the amount of crafting materials and ammo significantly. Enemies are stronger and Listen Mode is gone while certain HUD elements have also been turned off. Permadeath is more straightforward – die once and the game is over. You can choose to tackle it with checkpoints for each chapter or act, making it tougher but still manageable.
Along with new Trophies tied to these modes (which aren't needed for earning the Platinum trophy), some neat modifiers have also been tossed in. About 30 new graphics modes, from an 8-bit style to sepia tone, are being added along with modifiers for one-hit kills, unlimited ammo and more. Improvements for the accessibility of the Ground Zero encounter, Enhanced Listen Mode and more are also coming.