Mediatonic as brands to donate to charity to be in Fall Guys, hilarity ensues

You may have seen one of the many fan designed Fall Guys bean costumes scattered across the internet, and big brands have also latched on the phenomena with the likes of Konami, KFC, and Walmart all tweeting their own Fall Guys costumes.

Mediatonic have said they would "think very carefully" before putting anything like that in the game and have now announced that the brand that donates the most amount of cash to gaming charity Special Effect will get their costume in game.

Bids have been flying in from indie games and studios as well as brands you might not associate with gaming. The Tushy Bidet company bid $40,001 to have their design in the game.

Technically the highest bidder at the moment is Natuka Games, a company you may not have heard of as they make, ahem, saucy games. Their bid of $110,000 has been rejected due to NSFW content.

The highest official bid is from YouTuber Mr. Beast who has offered $100,000, but KFC, Walmart and the other big brands have yet to respond.

As Fall Guys went through extended downtime and server maintenance at the end of last week, Mediatonic said that they would be rewarding all the game's players for their patience waiting for the game to come back online.

Now they've revealed the compensation that they've come up with: a Legendary Prickles costume and 5,000 Kudos to spend in the in-game cosmetics store. Not so cuddly now, are we?

Fall Guys has been an absolute sensation for the team at developer Mediatonic and publisher Devolver Digital, with the companies revealing that they've sold over 2 million copies on Steam in the game's first week. That's before you take into account however many people have been playing via PlayStation 4, where it's free on PlayStation Plus in August. However, that has also led to some major server issues around launch, with an entire day being effectively wiped out on Friday, as they shored up the servers and added capacity ahead of the weekend. Thankfully things have been fairly steady since then.

We posted our Fall Guys review last week, saying:

Full of cute and cuddly jelly beans bumbling into each other in a race for the crown, Fall Guys is just about the most wholesome battle royale imaginable, and a whole lot of fun.

Fall Guys is out now for PlayStation 4 and PC via Steam.

Source: Twitter

[UPDATE] Steam is back online

UPADTE: It's back, Steam is working again!

Original story below…

Oh dear, something has gone wrong at Valve and Steam is offline. Head over to the Steam website and you get…

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Exciting, huh?

The unofficial Steam Store Twitter has confirmed it is offline.

The Steam desktop client is also having problems but the Community features seem to be up,m at least for the moment, they keep on going on and offline.

In other Valve news, it has been confirmed that the Valve Index VR headset production has been affected by the coronavirus outbreak, which means there are going to be fewer units released than planned. Currently, the Steam page for the Valve Index has a notify me button for players to get notified for when the headset is back in stock. In a statement given to Road To VR Valve said:

"We are working hard to meet demand for the Valve Index and want to reassure everyone that Index systems will be available for purchase prior to the game's launch. However, the global coronavirus health crisis has impacted our production schedules so we will have far fewer units for sale during the coming months compared to the volumes we originally planned. Our entire team is working hard right now to maximize availability."

The coronavirus outbreak is having an effect on all industries including the gaming one. Esports events have been canceled including Overwatch League in China and PUBG's PBS Berlin event, Sony has backed out of PAX East and GDC due to the virus, and Square Enix has also limited itself for PAX East. The Nintendo Switch's production has also been affected and led to shortages of the console, and the Switch port of The Outer Worlds was also delayed due to production issues that came about because of the coronavirus.

At the start of the year Valve announced that it has overhauled the soundtrack system on Steam meaning that going forward soundtrack will no longer be classed as DLC. Where soundtracks were classed as DLC you needed to own the game to purchase a soundtrack, and have that game downloaded to access the music as well. Now a new soundtrack app will allow people to purchase game music without having to have owned the accompanying game in the first place.

Source: Steam


The Firewatch movie / TV show is back on

Way back in 2016 Firewatch developers Campo Santo partnered with the film company Good Universe to create a film based on the hit game.

Campo Santo's founder Sean Vanaman spoke about the deal and said "When we met Good Universe we were floored by how they recognize, cultivate and produce incredible stories. It's rare you meet another group that shares so many of your values and makes the process of creating things even more exciting. We can't wait to see what we make together."

Like many video game to movie adaptions the project hit some problems, Good Universe were subsequently sold to Lionsgate and the project was halted with the rights returning to Campo Santo thereafter. Campo Santo themselves were then bought by Valve and the last we heard the Firewatch sequel, Valley of Gods, had met the same fate as a many other Valve projects. Valve's internal structure means that developers flip between projects at a whim and it seems the members of the Campo Santo team saw something else sparkly and went to work on that instead, we probably won't ever see Valley of the Gods, nor indeed the sparkly thing, because a more sparkly thing will come along and they'll go work on that instead.

Anyway, back to the film which is back on – probably – it might turn out to be a TV show instead. Indie film production company Snoot Entertainment is now working with Campo Santo to create the new media.

"Firewatch is a stunning accomplishment, a beautiful and heartbreaking piece of art," said Keith Calder from Snoot. "I'm delighted that Sean and Jake are letting us ruin their perfect video game by turning it into a movie and/or TV show."

One can't help think that they may have missed the boat on this one. Firewatch was a great game but it's going to be at least five years old by the time the TV show / film debuts and it was a small indie title, it was pleasant enough at the time but I don't think many people regard it as classic.

Source: THR

Apple to terminate Epic Games' dev access in Fortnite payment row

Apple have built a brick wall in the sand in their sudden spat with Epic Games over payment methods for in-app purchases in Fortnite, issuing the ultimatum that, unless Epic back down and remove the direct payment method that infringes on iOS App Store policies, they will cut Epic off entirely from Apple's platforms. Not just Fortnite, but all of Epic's access will be cut off.

Epic have filed for an injunction to prevent Apple from doing this while the lawsuit filed last week is deliberated over in the courts.

Epic's lawyers state that, following a public statement that Apple would "make every effort to work with Epic . . . so they can return Fortnite to the App Store", they decided to crack down on Epic.

Apple then posted another notice at 12:04 a.m. Pacific Time on August 14. In the second notice, Apple said it found Fortnite "in direct violation of the Apple Developer Program License Agreement", and stated it will terminate Epic's membership in its Developer Program "within 14 days" if Epic did not remove Fortnite's alternative in-app payment system and comply with other demands. Apple stated that if it terminates Epic, then Epic "may no longer submit apps to the App Store" and its "apps still available for distribution will be removed." Apple also stated it will cut off Epic's access to a list of tools, including "[a]ll Apple software, SDKs [software development kits], APIs [application programming interfaces], and developer tools", as well as "pre-release versions" of iOS, macOS and other Apple OSs.  Finally, Apple stated that unless Epic capitulates, Apple will also block "[e]ngineering efforts to improve hardware and software performance of Unreal Engine on Mac and iOS hardware [and] optimize Unreal Engine for the Mac for creative workflows".

Simply this would have a huge impact for Epic on Apple's platforms going forward, meaning that they are unable to continue developing Unreal Engine on iOS and MacOS, and would thus be unable to natively support the upcoming versions of either OS later this year, much less the planned jump for Macs from Intel to Apple Silicon CPUs due to start in 2021.

However, this won't have a major impact on the here and now outside of Fortnite. It won't suddenly see reams of third party games be delisted, though it will make updating them potentially more difficult for developers.

Of course, with the incessant updates that Epic throw at Fortnite, the game will become detached from the rest of the game's player base very quickly, with Epic having handled this law suit like a publicity stunt, timing their actions to have immediate and direct consequences for maximum impact.

All of this has come about because Epic decided to introduce a new way to pay for in-game currency that bypassed Apple's systems, dodging Apple's 30% fee on transactions processed via Apple. In reaction to this, Fortnite was pulled from the App Store, with Epic then immediately filing suit. A similar chain of events also played out on the Google Play Store on Android.

Apple have come in for strong criticism over the last few months, with a war of words with Microsoft over the exclusion of their xCloud streaming app. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers will only be able to access game streaming via Android smartphones when the service launches in September.

Source: Epic

Dragonball FighterZ next character is Master Roshi

Bandai Namco has confirmed the next DLC fighter character for Dragonball FighterZ is Master Roshi, and he will be available this September as part of FighterZ Pass 3. Master Roshi is the third character of FighterZ Pass 3 joining Kefla and Goku Ultra Instinct. There are two more characters yet to be revealed for this pass. You can watch Master Roshi's reveal trailer below where he teases some of his fighting style.

In our review for Dragon Ball FighterZ Dave wrote:

2018 is off to a strong start with Dragon Ball FighterZ an early contender for this year's best fighting game.  By shattering some boundaries, Dragon Ball FighterZ has combat that's more than worth getting into, but also a diverse roster and some phenomenal presentation. The Story Mode could have been improved if it were more streamlined, but it's a mere blemish on an otherwise spectacular game.

You can read the full Dragon Ball FighterZ review here.

Source: YouTube

Batman Court of Owls game teased again, reveal at DC FanDome, secret code hidden in website

WB Games Montreal have teased their forthcoming game again, this time with a red circle, some numbers, and brief flash of a logo that show an owl. Ooh, what on earth could it be?

In case you cant be bothered to pause the video, here are the two images that briefly flash up, the first clearly has an owl in it…

The second image is much harder to make out, I've fiddled with it a bit to try and make it clearer but it could be anything, looks like half an orange to me.

Back in January Warner Bros Montreal decided to tease the game on social media by posting more images with the caption Capture The Knight. The same caption was used way back in September 2019 when they first started teasing the game. Yes, this is very, very long tease, perhaps the game has been held up by COVID-19 or the recent threatened sale of the company made things complicated.

Today's tweet from WB Games Montreal directs people to a new Twitter account, @r3dakt3d – redacted, geddit? There's also a r3dakt3d website which has the text "We have been expecting you" and the date 18th August, which is two days before DC FanDome, but the Twitter account uses the DC Fandome hashtag so we will probably get the reveal of the game officially on the 18th, and gameplay at DC FanDome.

WB Games are clearly aware that people scrape the source code for teaser websites just in case there is anything juicy,  obviously it's the first thing I did and it contains the following message.

Welcome Back You ——— △V B3 C⟶ →5N

Decode the hexadecimal and you get: dash, dash, dash, upwards triangle, V B3 C, long rightwards pointing arrow, rightwards pointing arrow, <Private Use, First>, 5N

Dash dash dash is "O" in morse, Upwards triangle plus a V makes a W.. er.. that's as far as I got. Can you do better? There's also some Morse code on the tweet above.

Source: Twitter

Ghost of Tsushima: Legends, a free multiplayer mode, launches this autumn

Well this is a surprise, Ghost of Tsushima is getting a multiplayer mode and it's going to be free to all owners of the original game. The wording is quite specific so it I would gamble that it will also be available as a stand alone purchase. Let's take a look at the gorgeous trailer.

Legends is a separate mode that features four new warriors rather than focusing on Jin and characters you have already met. It also adds a supernatural element wit  locations and enemies inspired by Japanese folk tales and mythology. The four warriors each have a class, Samurai, Hunter, Ronin, or Assassin, each with their own abilities.

You can team up with up to four friends via party or grab some randoms via matchmaking an play Survival, a wave based mission with groups of enemies which have supernatural abilities. Also included is a series of two player co-op story missions that will require you to work closely with your partner, using techniques you mastered in the single player game " but with new magical twists."

"It's been so rewarding to see the amazing reactions from all of you as you play through Ghost of Tsushima," said Darren Bridges, Senior Game Designer at Sucker Punch Productions on the PlayStation Blog. "We've been watching so many of you stream your playthroughs, and can't wait to open up this new way for all of us to play together! We're happy to offer this mode completely free to Ghost of Tsushima owners as a thank you to our players, and we look forward to hearing what you think!"

Ghost of Tsushima Guides from TheSixthAxis

Mortal Shell Review

You'd probably assume, having just been yeeted out of my skinsuit by a giant of a man wielding an absurdly large hammer, that I was about to die, but you'd be wrong. You see, in Mortal Shell, you are not just the clothes you wear, but the person that wears them. You're a weird skinless Foundling, and you've got the incredible ability to jump into any of the vaguely sturdy-looking corpses you find lying about.

It's a fresh twist that means that if you die once, instead of actually dying, you simply leave the body you were inhabiting. You can then jump back into your body for one more go and this allows you to get straight back into the fight, or, if you're unlucky, to instantly get shot in the back and die for real.

Mortal Shell is definitely a Soulslike. It's filled with dread, a constant sense of unease, and literally every enemy can and will kill you if you let them. It's hard, but it's also satisfying, for the most part. The unique mechanics at play here are a lot of fun, and both the shell system, which lets you effectively choose and switch between classes, and the harden system, which makes you temporarily invulnerable, are a lot of fun.

While you can switch between shells fairly easily, it didn't take my little pale skinny dude long to find his forever home inside a person with a skull face called Tiel. In life, Tiel was a mystery, and in death, not much has changed. As you level up each shell and play with them for longer, you discover a bit more about them, and you can get pretty attached to them.

Tiel is very much the thief, the rogue of the small group of shells available for you to choose from. He's got an obscene stamina pool, the lowest health of the bunch, and some very cool mechanics involving poison. You might prefer one of the warrior types, or maybe even the scholar, but for me, I like dodging and hitting fast, and Tiel is perfect for that.


Alongside the paucity of shells, there aren't many weapons either, and finding your perfect weapon is also essential. The sword you start out with is good and all, and while the big old sword is great and the flaming mace is fun, my heart will always belong to the hammer and chisel. You see, it's fast, and that's all I need. Also, the special attack fires out a ring of gigantic nails at enemies, and boy is that great.

Now, once you've found a weapon and shell that suit you, things get easier, but the game is never easy. That's in part due to some questionable enemy placement (there are constant "gotchas" around every corner) and in part due to some very scarce healing mechanics. Now, that's fine, I like hard games, but it can also make some of the big boss fights intensely aggravating.

Thankfully, the design of the bosses, both in terms of combat and the visuals, is excellent. Each one is completely different, and each one will have you going "oh, that's cool" and "goddamnitnotagain!" It's basically everything you want from bosses in a Soulslike, and it might be where Mortal Shell is at its strongest.

Speaking of the visuals, this game is astoundingly pretty. Even the horribly murky areas still look incredible, but one area, in particular, is like a gothic Escher painting. Naturally, that means that the horrors that await you are along a similar vein too, but hey, that's not a bad thing.

Mortal Shell is a very strong game, but I've got a few of gripes with it, mostly to do with there being just loads of enemies in some areas as a difficulty spike. It's a very straightforward way of upping the difficulty, and I'm not a huge fan of it in this genre. There are also a couple of little bugs, one of which robbed me of the ability to dodge, which turned out to be lethal very quickly.

Planet Coaster: Console Edition Preview

There's no need to worry about having to scream inside your heart in Planet Coaster, the eternally cheery theme park management sim from Frontier Developments. Well, you might want to keep it down for the sake of your relationship with your neighbours, but a little bit of screaming now and then is probably called for in 2020.

After almost half a decade on PC, Planet Coaster is finally making the jump to console, launching toward the end of this year for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and the next-gen PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

Immediately, the controls feel fairly simple and intuitive, the twin-stick camera movement getting you around your park with ease and the UI overlays easy to get around using the other buttons. You can quickly start placing rides, creating pathways, and doing all the other park management things that you need to do.

That could have been it. That could have been the entirety of Planet Coaster's translation to console, but Frontier Developments have gone the extra mile to reconsider the path you take through the game and some of its inner workings.

The game now has an overhauled tutorial and path through the career with a number of new characters thrown into the mix to lead you through its opening. A bouffant park organiser Oswald B. Thompson, eager to induct you as a new trainee into the park's management, a shrewd businesswoman looking to eke every single penny possible out of your punters, a sassy young social media starlet giving you tips on how to add a little jushe and sparkle to the park's design and the kinds of rides you have on show.

They're an effective trio in the game's opening level, as you get to the basics of placing and opening your first ride, lay out the path that the waiting line takes, jazz it up with some plants, scenery and eye-catching performances from staff to keep them entertained, and then set the price just high enough that punters don't feel ripped off.

One area that Frontier have been able to enhance is the ease with which you can put all of this together using a controller. As in the PC version of the game, you can painstakingly place individual items and construct the perfect scenery in your park, but that's obviously more awkward and finicky on a controller compared to a keyboard and mouse. To help, there's the twinned features of a much larger pool of pre-built blueprints for players to use, and the Frontier Workshop, so that players can create scenery and scenarios and share them with others.

Of course, Planet Coaster's main appeal is going to be the ability to create your own rollercoasters. Again, you have pre-built coasters that you can just slap down (if you've got enough space for them), but you can also build something bespoke in any of the coaster themes that the existing coasters use.

There's two methods you can use here, either from the bird's eye view that most of the game takes place in, or switching to a first person view to effectively ride the coaster as you're building it. Think the Wallace & Grommit toy train ride, but a little less frantic. Again, it's simple and intuitive to drop piece after piece, twist the track with different cambers as you go through twists, turns and drops that would elicit at least a small whimper. There's also templates for certain turns and swoops that you can throw in quite easily.

My biggest issues came from trying to head back in and edit segments, with the controls feeling a touch imprecise and obtuse when trying to select what I wanted and then feeling pretty awkward to reattach to the rest of the track. The controls also struggle (or more accurately, I struggle with them) when pulling off steep dives with the track at weird angles, giving me a bit of disconnect between whether the analogue sticks are acting relative to the camera angle or the track. With a good few months still to go before release, there's plenty of time to continue to refine and iron out these kinks.

It's been far too long coming, but Planet Coaster: Console Edition does a great job of bringing the charms of theme park management from PC to console. There's still some work to be done in refining the controls, but this is more than a quick port that reconsiders how to present the challenges of park management to players and gives more and new options for how you can build the theme park of your dreams.

Pacer is future racing's brightest hope

The future is all about pushing limits. Seemingly bored with the mundanity of their futuristic, hovering cities and a handy supply of Soylent Green food capsules, future people love to find some kind of ridiculous new sport to focus on. Whether it's Rollerball or Speedball, Death Race or the Thunderdome, there's a clear belief that humanity will lose interest in the simple purity of jumpers-for-goalposts soccer shenanigans, fire up their grav-cycles and strap on some leather and a helmet to go fast, until they're probably dead. There's no need to wait though, as Pacer brings us future racing today (leather, helmets and death entirely optional).

Pacer is borne out of the past of Formula Fusion. A Wipeout-esque future racer whose indie credentials – and ex-Wipeout staffers – helped it find a number of fans when it released into Early Access back in 2015. However, as it slowly wound its way towards a full release, and console versions, the decision was made to step back and rebuild everything from the ground up. Pacer doesn't feel like a reskinned Formula Fusion, it feels a like a new game.

Despite the fact they don't exist yet, there's an expectation that floating race-craft handle a certain way when they're flying around a circuit at eye-watering speeds. Much of that comes from 1995's Wipeout. The poster child for the PlayStation's club-savvy, tech-heavy brand, Wipeout built a perception that every future racer has since attempted to emulate. Pacer's take is tight, controlled and believable, and it just feels right.

There's more customisation available within that though, certainly more than its inspiration ever had. Alongside different craft, and their expected statistical differences, you can tune them up to fit your play style perfectly.

Loadout's give you a baseline level for performance and weaponry, but you can then dig down into the engine type, handling, braking, anti-gravity and defence, as well as the weapons and their subsequent modifications. New parts are then purchasable via Tech Credits you've earned while racing, allowing for even more specialisation. It's a classic racing game setup, but it's one that's never really been applied to the future racing genre.

Our preview version of Pacer featured four tracks to wrap our brains around, from the twisting Forests of Satawald to the Peru-set Aguila, all of which show a keen eye for what makes a futuristic track shine beyond the chrome and neon. SonaShahar is the current highlight, its plunging circuit mixing classical architecture with a neon-city underbelly; it's the kind of track you're begging to return to, trying to balance the fast-paced action with a desire to stare beyond the cockpit.

Pacer looks absolutely fantastic, whether in motion or in the pre-race fly-bys. It's hard to detach yourself from the essence of Wipeout here. Again, the R8 Games team boasts a number of ex-Wipeout devs, and there's so much here that'll feel familiar to fans of the former Psygnosis series that it's sometimes difficult to separate the two. The truth is that Pacer looks like Wipeout would if it was being produced today, every inch a modern-day future racer, and while it might owe much to another's legacy, it brings the concept straight into 2020.

The audio is a big part of that too. Electronica and the broadest church of dance music has always felt like the right fit for this style of game, and that's no different here. The tracks on show for this press preview had me grinning mid-race in a manner most unhelpful to staying at the front of the grid, and that's thanks to the return of Wipeout alumni Cold Storage and the arrival of dubstep supremo Dub FX's reggae and ska-influenced beats, mixing the old and the new in emphatic, joyous style. Pacer doesn't just sound how you'd expect, it lives and breathes the future racing genre from every pore.

We were limited to Quick Play events for this preview, rather than getting a taste of tournaments or campaign features, but within them you're able to see the different race types you can expect to be indulging in. There's the standard race and time trial options, but they sit alongside Destruction, where you're aiming to put the hurt on your fellow racers, and Elimination where you're trying to stay out of last place.

Endurance is all about how long you can survive, while Flowmentum resurrects the classic Wipeout 'Zone' mode, with your craft steadily increasing in speed as you hurtle through gate after gate. It's a tough thing to innovate here, but Pacer at least has the bases covered for a varied and engaging experience.

On the cusp of its full release, Pacer looks, sounds and feels like future racing's brightest hope. While Sony has forsaken the Wipeout series and its legion of fans, R8 Games is all set to sweep them straight off their feet. Lucky there's all that anti-gravity about, eh?

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Remastered leaks, out this November

Amazon have listed and just as quickly deleted a listing for Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Remastered for Xbox One. The game has a launch date of November 13th, the same day as Yakuza: Like a Dragon, and also the date we expect the Xbox Series X to have launched before. The title was listed for Xbox One and Switch but we would expect PlayStation and possibly next gen versions are also on the way.

The game has also been listed by retailers in Australian retailer Mighty Ape. Back in June Venturebeat reported that, following the success of Burnout Paradise Remastered, Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit was coming to Switch and other consoles . EA have not officially announced the remaster.

Hot Pursuit launched way back in 2010 on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii and scored 8/10 in our review. 

Hot Pursuit is a refreshing reboot for a series that's become tired and disjointed, with Criterion's grip tightly controlling the direction of the game as much as the publisher.  As a result, this latest Need for Speed is the best it's been for years, and although it's naturally not going to be a game for everyone, anyone looking for a solid racing game this Christmas with a significant emphasis on online competition should find this is well worth investigating, especially if you liked the demo.

EA have teased what some of their biggest studios are working on for the next generation of console. With the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X coming out at the end of this year, it doesn't sound like EA will be there on day one with non-sports games, but will be striving to deliver some eye-popping new experiences in 2021 and beyond.

Criterion Games are resurgent in recent months, with EA having decided to fold Ghost Games back into Criterion and hand the Guildford-based studio the keys to the Need for Speed franchise once more. The glimpse of some incredibly shiny and reflective ray-traced cars looked practically photorealistic.

Source: PureXbox via Eurogamer

UFC 4 Review

It has been approximately 2 and a half years since the release of UFC 3, and in that time quite a few things have changed. New faces have risen through the ranks of the championship, and there is now have an official UFC Fight Island event thanks to the effects of COVID-19, making things within the sport slightly surreal. With these changes UFC 4 leans slightly into the surrealism while also maintaining the core of this tactical fighting series.

There are quite a few modes available in UFC 4, from quick matches to play against others through the career mode and online modes that mix things up a bit. The career mode has a bit more depth to previous UFC games, embracing some more of the proceedings outside of fighting. One of the main additions is Coach Davis who eases you into the sport at the start of the game, gives a bit more context to training, and tips as you progress through drills. Training is simplified into five categories with those being Boxing, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Wrestling, and Heavy Bag. In the first four you will spar against a partner to improve move ratings, while in Heavy Bag you will have challenges to complete against a… well, a heavy bag, like throwing a set number of combos.

Your fighter move skills are rated out of five stars, and these ratings go up the more they are practiced in training and used in fights. Training comes with risks, as your sparring partners can cause your fighter injuries, which can be minor or major. They can be recovered from using treatments, resting the fighter, or repairing the affected attribute in the fighter evolution profile using points. These points can also be used to improve to the fighter's striking skills, grapple skills, and overall health and cardio. Major injuries can even see a fight be postponed while your fighter recovers.

In addition to regular training other fighters can be invited to the training camp to help unlock new moves, and you can also review your opponent. However, all of this costs training points which are reset at the end of each week. Throw in promotional events needed to hype up a fight and you have to learn to manage to balance training your fighter with generating interest and gathering fame. There is also a social media aspect where you can interact with other fighters. Be friendly with them and they will train you at a discounted rate, but taunt them and you can build up hype for a match up.

When it comes to the actual fighting in the Octagon things will feel familiar for fans of UFC 3, but there have been some changes. Transitions on the ground have a newly simplified control system, but you can opt to use the control system from UFC 3. The new system is great for newcomers to the series to get a feel for the wrestling and Jiu Jitsu side of the sport. Submissions also feel much more intuitive, though how effective they are will depend on your chosen fighter's submission skills. There is a bit of a niggle where the input lags a bit from the controller during transitions, leading to a slight delay in the action being performed on screen.

Other elements of fighting remain pretty much the same as UFC 3 when it comes to inputs with combinations of face and shoulder buttons alternating kicks and punches being thrown at an opponent's legs, body, or head. Blocking is also standardised once more to the shoulder buttons. In general, getting knockouts can feel a bit tougher to earn, with AI fighters instantly blocking the part of the body that has rocked them.

There are new fighting arenas to fight in, from standard arenas to more outlandish areas including a cave like setting. There are also more customisation options for created fighters with all sorts of cosmetics to give your fighter a unique look.

The bloat UFC Ultimate Team has been cut from UFC 4's online multiplayer, which never really fit into a game based on 1v1 fights. Instead there is a much more streamlined approach. Online World Championships will limit players to fight for a title in a selected weight class with their custom fighter, but it's easy to switch classes, so one day it could be bantamweight and another middleweight. There are also the Blitz Battles which are six round tournaments with regularly rotated rules. One tournament, for example, was focused on Knockouts Only to win a fight, making UFC 4 feel like a traditional fighter with standard health bars. There is a also the standard quick fight where you can choose the weight class and the fighter you want to play as.

Overall, the online multiplayer has held up well over the game's first weekend of release, with no noticeable lag through the fighting.

GAME say Spider-Man will only join Marvel's Avengers in March 2021

The kerfuffle over Spider-Man's PlayStation exclusivity deal has died down slightly but PlayStation fans can now take their turn at being annoyed as it turns out Spider-Man won't be joining the game until March 2021.

UK retailer GAME has been sending out emails to customers to entice them in to pre-ordering the game and at the bottom it states " "PlayStation is the only place to play as Spider-Man when he swings into Marvel's Avengers next March."


In our beta preview, we wrote:

The Marvel's Avengers beta gives more than a quick glimpse of what to expect from Crystal Dynamics newest game. This is a large helping of content from the game and after spending a few hours picking away at it, we've come away finally understanding exactly what this game is and what the Tomb Raider studio is trying to achieve. So far it's coming together nicely, and while not exactly revolutionary we're impressed with how it enables a group of radically different Avengers to fight side-by-side. Let's just hope the story can inherit some of that MCU magic and that we see more mission variety when the game finally touches down on September 4th.

You can find out more about the game in our interview with the developers, Crystal Dynamics!

The PC specs for Marvel's Avengers have been revealed and you will need a minimum of 75GB of disk space, 8GB RAM, and an NVIDIA GTX 950/AMD 270 graphics card in your rig. In addition, Crystal Dynamics has confirmed there will be an optional 30GB texture pack so the best visuals can be reached, and there will also be an unlocked framerate. Support for ultrawide and multi monitor setups will also be there day one for Marvel's Avengers. All control options will be fully customisable and you should be able to switch between keyboard and mouse and controller, depending on preference. The spec lists for minimum and recommended setups below:

Minimum Spec:

  • OS: Windows 10 64-bit
  • CPU: i3-4160 or AMD equivalent
  • 8GB RAM
  • NVIDIA GTX 950 / AMD 270 (min 2GB video ram)
  • DirectX 12
  • 75GB HDD space

Recommended Spec:

  • Windows 10 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i7 4770K, 3.4 Ghz or AMD Ryzen 51600, 3.2 Ghz
  • 16GB RAM
  • NVIDIA GTX 1060 6GB or AMD Radeon RX 480, 8GB.
  • DirectX 12
  • 110GB SSD space

Source: MP1st

Call of Duty Mobile: Conquest, season nine of the game, has begun

Call of Duty: Mobile has been updated and the ninth season, titled Conquest, has begun. It includes "a major weapon update with the new Gunsmith feature, a new weapon class – marksman rifles, the Shipment 1944 map, a new perk, new lethal equipment, an updated Battle Royale map, and much more."

There is of course, a battlepass, with free tiers plus extra goodies if you spend some cash.

At Tier 14, all players will unlock the new Shield Turret Scorestreak — hunker down with it in a high traffic lane and blast enemies from behind its built-in cover. Reach Tier 21 to obtain the Kilo Bolt-Action, a new functional weapon with excellent mobility and one-shot kill potential. Other free tier highlights include the rare RUS-79U – Obstacle (Tier 36) and BY15– Obstacle (Tier 41), plus the Toy Soldier weapon charm at Tier 46.

Purchase the Premium Pass to potentially unlock all of the content available in the Conquest stream. Start the Season strong with series-favorite Victor Reznov unlocked right at Tier 1, followed by the notorious Richtofen at Tier 12. Earn epic weapon skins like the QQ9 – Trendsetter at Tier 40 and the Kilo Bolt-Action – Lazarus at Tier 50. Also unlocked at Tier 50, an awesome new skin Nikto-Stronghold and a the legendary calling card – Take Cover will prove your dedication to the fight.

The updated also includes Gunsmith, a new feature that allows you to mix and match between 50 new attachments, 20 new reticles, and 60 weapon levels across all existing weapons. It also includes charms, because headshotting death machines are well known for also liking fluffy bunny figurines hanging from the barrel of their sniper rifle, and stickers.

Seasonal challengers include the new Amped perk which improves your weapon swap speed and rocket launcher reload speed, and later on the season you can unlock Thermite which sticks to surfaces upon impact and burns violently for several seconds, inflicting periodic damage to enemies in the immediate area.

The new map is Shipment 1944, and the Battle Royale map expands again with four new areas to explore: Outpost, Dormitory, Radar Base, and Campground.

Source: Activision

Tennis World Tour 2 swings for strategy and success

For far too long it's felt like tennis has been underrepresented in video games. Fond memories of Top Spin and Virtua Tennis are steadily becoming more and more rose tinted as each year goes by, and a promised renaissance in 2018 felt more like a player coming back from injury a few months too soon. 2020's crop of tennis games have demonstrated much more promise so far.

The first Tennis World Tour was not particularly well received, with developer Breakpoint deciding to explore a number of new and intriguing ideas within the usual tennis formula, ultimately taking the game away from what tennis fans really wanted to see. It was like, after staggering through the desert for days and finding yourself in an oasis, being handed a bottle of thick and syrupy fruit juice. It left you just as thirsty, if not more-so.

So for the sequel, Nacon have kept some of the same intent, of trying to capture the more strategic elements of the game, but blended it with more of the traditional style of tennis game that gamers know and love. Gone is a lot of the predictive nature of the first game, the cards system has been retuned, and you're given much more feedback on how you're playing. To pull this off, they've turned to Big Ant Studios, the team behind their own homegrown AO Tennis series.

Without a tutorial in the preview build to lead us into the renewed gameplay, it was a struggle to get to grips with the game. The timing, the placement, the leeway that you have in shot selection; this is not a simple pick up and play arcade game like Virtua Tennis, and instead hews closer to the likes of AO Tennis 2 (quelle surprise) and Top Spin.

As you position yourself on the court, you power up your shot (whether flat, top spin, slice, lob or whatever0, letting go at hopefully just the right time to swing and send the ball flying back across the court. Get the timing wrong and your accuracy can be way off, either dropping the ball short without enough power, or flying long and losing you the point, but get the timing just right and you'll hit the sweet spot, able to nail the white line and put your opponent under pressure. There's a rhythm to it, and it's this that I struggled to consistently get right, but there was always instant feedback from the game to say whether I was on time, too early or too late.

Simpler to grasp is the new serve system, with an initial gauge swinging from left to right above your player to time your toss and serving action. Get it your second button press just right, and the shot is straighter and with more power.

Tennis World Tour 2 retains some of those more strategic elements from the original, with player stamina having an impact through a match. You can see the stamina levels of both yourself and your opponent draining through longer rallies and service games, potentially giving you a lifeline as unforced errors creep into their game or pushing you to play more conservatively.

The cards system also returns, intending to add more variability to a match and capturing the way that a close game can swing back and forth, but has been reworked to be a more active part of gameplay instead of being more passive buffs. You can select five cards and trigger them them mid-match, letting you boost your player in Endurance, Power, Precision and Agility. Some cards, however, affect and diminish your opponent and it's this that feels a bit too game-like about the system, in my opinion.

At the very least, all of the percentage-based buffs and debuffs mean that they're relatively slight modifiers, and despite them being picked out of packs bought from a store on the main menu, you can only earn in-game currency from actually playing the game, not microtransactions.

The other thing I can't shake is that, even with the promise of twice as many character animations in the game, there's still a certain rigidity to the players and the actions they take on court. There can be snaps from one animation to another, I sometimes felt that the game didn't want to let me change direction once I spotted that a drop shot was coming in, and it definitely felt like there was just a single animation for losing a point. Hopefully the final weeks of polish can help smooth out some of the rougher edges here.

The game launches with a decent selection of game modes, from exhibition matches to a career and online. A Tournament section will feature the as yet unannounced licensed tournaments, as well as a Tie Break Tens mode for ultra-fast quick-fire matches. One neat addition is the ability to save and resume a match, letting you line up a five set epic without also having to carve out a few hours of uninterrupted time in order to finish it.

There's also doubles, which was conspicuous by its absence from the first game, and adds a very different style of tennis to the game, where lightning fast reactions are needed to win. This mode can also be taken online, with two players to a console, though strangely not with players spread across four consoles.

Putting all of this in practice, Tennis World Tour 2 plays a decent game of tennis once you get used to it. There's a definite learning curve as you settle into the groove to find the right shot timing rally after rally, and from that point on the strategy of a point, game, set and match can start to come to the fore. Tennis World Tour 2 is certainly a safer take on the sport than the original was, but sometimes you've just got to land a shot in court to stay in the rally.

Report: Retailer lists Xbox Series X for $599

This is a bit of a "my mate's dad knows this bloke who said he heard that…" type of thing, but it does come from respected games journalist Alanah Pearce. She appeared on the Kinda Funny Xcast and said she had been sent an image showing a retail terminal that listed the Xbox Series X for $599 with a November release date.

It could be a placeholder price but we are very close to finding out the prices of both consoles as Sony and Microsoft are expected to reveal everything before the end of the month, so there's a  chance this is the real price.

Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg, GM Xbox Games Marketing, recently announced that the Xbox Series X will be released in November, narrowing the release window from "Holiday 2020" to a specific month.

We also know Yakuza: Like a Dragon Launches Day 1 on Xbox Series X and that is out on November 13th, so the console will be on the shelves by then.

The long rumoured Xbox Series S, the cheaper "Lockheart" variant of Microsoft's next-gen console, has been leaked from a handful of different sources that have got their hands on the updated Xbox controller designed for the Xbox Series X.

Twitter user Zak S was able to purchase the controller, with its subtly modified form factor, redesigned D-pad and new Share button. However, most interesting is that the packaging for the controller reveals that is it compatible with "Xbox Series X | S".

The Xbox Series S is expected to be a lower powered version of the Xbox Series X, keeping many of the same attributes, such as the ultra-fast SSD storage and Zen 2 CPU, but compromising on the GPU side of things. Where the Xbox Series X is expected to deliver a native 4K resolution, higher frame rates and ray tracing, the cut back "Lockheart" could sacrifice these to reach a lower price point for those buyers without a 4K TV or without as exacting demands from their games graphics, while retaining the minimal loading times and enhanced game worlds that the CPU could provide.

Source: Forbes

Rainbow Six Siege Y5S3 operator, map, and more revealed, full details

Ubisoft Montreal have officially revealed their newest season of content for their immensely popular online shooter, Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege.

In case you missed the cinematic teaser (shown above) Sam Fisher – of Splinter Cell fame – will be joining the Rainbow team for Year 5 Season 3 Operation: Shadow Legacy.

Codenamed "Zero", this is an even gruffer Sam Fisher than we've seen before. He will make his debut with the launch of Rainbow Six Siege Y5S3 along with plenty of new and updated features. Before we dive into some highlights, here's a quick breakdown.

Rainbow Six Siege Year 5 Season 3 summary

  • New Operator: Zero (Sam Fisher)
  • Map ban feature
  • Match replays
  • New weapons: SC-3000K and 5.7 USG
  • Contextual ping system
  • More scope attachment options
  • Improvement accessibility
  • Reinforcement pool
  • New equipment: Hard Breach Charge
  • Thatcher rework
  • Stats tracker
  • SquadFinder

Sam Fisher Joins Rainbow Six

Year 5 Season 3 sees Ubisoft shift to their new model of rolling out content. Instead of two Operators each season, the team are rolling it back to one. This is so the team can focus on improving the core gameplay instead of working solely on expanding that Rainbow Six roster.

It's hard to complain when Sam Fisher comes knocking. The Splinter Cell protagonist wields his trusty SC-3000K assault rifle and 5.7 USG pistol (plus built-in suppressor, obvs), with the option to take an MP7 as his primary. His gadget is the Argus, a projectile camera that can embed into both breakable and non-breakable surfaces. This allows the stealth king to view both sides of a surface (similar to his keyhole-spying in Splinter Cell) and even hit gadgets with the Argus's one-shot laser.

Chalet Map Rework

For well over a year now Ubisoft have stopped adding new maps to the Rainbow Six Siege rotation. Instead, the developers have gone back through the lineup of exists maps, reworking them to make each one more dynamic and viable for competitive play.

Following on House, Chalet has had some extensive work done. For a start, Operators can now rappel all the way up onto the roof, with the Trophy bomb site swapped for a new one in Dining. There have been renovations elsewhere, especially wit Bedroom and Office. The stairs leading up to the first floor are now connected to Trophy with Solarium being a new room replacing the balcony area next to Master. There are plenty of changes elsewhere for players to discover including a window looking down onto Garage.

New Attachments & Equipment

Players can equip a Hard Breach Charge in Y5S3. This works similarly to your regular charge but can punch through reinforced surfaces – mind you the hole left is medium sized and these will detonate automatically so need to be deployed with care.

Ubisoft have also adjusted how scopes work in Rainbow Six Siege. There are now 4 levels of magnification (1.5x, 2.0x, 2.5x, and 3.0x) with scopes redistributed across the entire Siege armoury.

Other New Features

Y5S3 packs in a load of other features and improvements:

  • More accessibility options are being made available to colourblind players and those with visual impairments.
  • Map bans will see players veto either one or two of the three random map selections. If only one map is eliminated, one of the remaining two will be automatically chosen.
  • Your most recent 12 matches can be watched via Match Replay. This comes with a full spectator mode though is still being tested in alpha.
  • Contextual pings allow you to highlight more points of interest using specific markers instead of the standard yellow ping.
  • Instead of having 2 reinforcements each, defenders now share from a collective pool of 10 reinforcements.
  • Thatcher's EMP Grenade gadget will no longer destroy gadgets, just disable them.
  • Ubisoft are launching a more in-depth stat tracker which breaks down your seasonal data. They will also launch SquadFinder, a tool used to connect with other players and create a fireteam.

So what is the release date for Rainbow Six Siege Year 5 Season 3? As always, Ubisoft are staying tight-lipped. All Y5S3 content and features will hit the test server first before becoming publicly available.

However, looking back at Year 4 and Year 3, both saw their third season roll out on September 11th, so keep that in mind.

Bless Unleashed is coming to PS4, closed beta taking place from August 20th

Bandai Namco has confirmed that the free to play MMORPG Bless Unleashed will be released on PS4 later this year, having been made available on Xbox One and PC in early 2020. While an exact date for the release is yet to be given, Bandai Namco has confirmed that there will be a closed beta for Bless Unleashed from August 20th. If PS4 players want to get involved with that then all that needs to be done is to sign up at the Bless Unleashed official beta page.

Here is Bless Unleashed's full description:

Bless Unleashed takes place in the untamed world of Lumios and presents a rich backstory created with hardcore MMO players in mind. The game features deep combo-driven mechanics, player customization, and cooperative (PvE) and competitive (PvP) multiplayer. At launch, the land of Lumios featured 13 zones for players to explore and battle against countless foes within. There are seven powerful Field Bosses scattered across the wilds and 26 Elite Bosses who drop amazing rewards for heroes who can defeat them. Additionally, there are six unique Dungeons to explore, enabling players to truly feel the dangers of Lumios. Players may also engage in battle across eight Arena Challenges and eight Lairs belonging to powerful foes who eagerly wait to dispatch unprepared adventurers.

Developed using Unreal Engine 4, Bless Unleashed looks absolutely phenomenal, and claimed the title of being the first HD, 4K MMORPG to come to Xbox One back when it was released.

Source: Press Release

The Walking Dead Onslaught PSVR and PCVR release date confirmed, will be compatible with PS5

Survios has confirmed that The Walking Dead Onslaught will be released for PSVR, Steam VR, and Oculus Rift on September 29th, with a physical release landing on October 2nd in Europe and October 13th in North America. Survios also confirmed that The Walking Dead Onslaught will be compatible with the PlayStation 5. In The Walking Dead Onslaught players play as Daryl in the campaign following the events of the Savior War, and there will also be a Scavenger mode where players can take on the roles of Rick, Daryl, Michonne, and Carol. In Scavenger mode players will have to collect resources while battling against the zombie horde.

There will be some different versions of The Walking Dead Onslaught available and they are listed:

  • Digital Deluxe Edition: Includes Iconic Show Weapons Pack: Lucille, Rick's Mace, The Red Machete and Tyreese's Hammer, Alexandria Crafting Starter Kit, The Walking Dead Onslaught Mini-Soundtrack and Art Book. Additionally, purchases via the PlayStation Store will also receive a special PS4 Theme and Avatar pack.
  • Digital Pre-Order Bonuses: Offers exclusive Sheriff Rick and Hunter Daryl character skins, Gold Katana and Gold Knuckle Knife weapon skins, and a pre-purchase discount on participating platforms.
  • Retail Editions: Retail Exclusive Deluxe Editions and a limited run Survivor Edition are available at Retail. The Survivor Edition will feature all in-game and Deluxe Edition content, an exclusive SteelBook®, and 1 of 5 Collectable Postcards.

The Walking Dead Onslaught follows The Walking Dead Saints and Sinners to VR. In our review for The Walking Dead Saints and Sinners, Jason wrote:

"The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners is an excellent VR game that stands out from a lot of what the medium tends to be associated with. The weight of the combat combined with the constant worry that the undead and the living both bring combine for an incredibly gratifying experience. Throw in crafting, the solid writing and meaningful quests and you've got a pretty special game on your hands. This is definitely worth a look if you can stomach more zombies. I mean, kill them, don't eat them."
You can read the full The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners review here.
Source: Press Release

Red Dead Online update 1.21 rolled back on PC and consoles

Rockstar has rolled back title update 1.21 for Red Dead Online on both PC and consoles following numerous issues. The rollback first hit the PS4 and Xbox One versions of Red Dead Online, and later the developer applied the same method to the PC version of Red Dead Online. Title update 1.21 was supposed to be small security and connection update, but had unintended consequences of connection issues becoming more rampant, and animal spawn rates falling. Rockstar explains in the statement below.

"An update to Red Dead Online intended to provide security improvements and address connection errors unintentionally introduced a range of issues including connection problems, low animal spawn counts, difficulty pitching Camps, entering Moonshine shacks as well as others on PS4 and Xbox One. We have reverted back to the previous version on those platforms, initially launched on July 28. This should address these recent issues and restore stability – meanwhile we will continue to work to eliminate any remaining issues through future updates.

[Update August 14, 2020]: The rollback has now also been applied to Red Dead Online for PC.

Rockstar has not said why the update caused these issues but it would likely be down to some error in the code causing clashes with other elements. There is yet no timeframe for when Rockstar will be putting out newer updates, but update 1.20 did have some new content added to it this week to coincide with the rollback of update 1.21. You can see the full 1.20 update notes below.

Red Dead Online update 1.20 update patch notes

[August 14, 2020] New Content

  • A new Legendary Animal has been added to Red Dead Online:
    • Legendary Coyote
      • Red Streak Coyote
      • Midnight Paw Coyote
  • New Items have been added to Gus' Store
    • Red Streak Coat
    • Midnight Paw Coat
    • Babin Hat
  • New Permanent Clothing items have been added to the Wheeler, Rawson & Co. Catalogue:
    • Ddaventry Jacket
    • Blackgrave Coat
    • Hinxman Hat
    • Felera Hat
    • Penstock Pants
    • Corrales Shirt
    • Molina Blouse

[August 4, 2020] New Content

  • A new Legendary Animal has been added to Red Dead Online:
    • Legendary Alligator
      • Teca Gator
      • Sun Gator
  • New Items have been added to Gus' Shop
    • Improved Bow Variant – Alligator
  • New Permanent Clothing items have been added to the Wheeler, Rawson & Co. Catalogue:
    • Corchado Poncho
    • Sandoval Jacket
    • Windcliff Coat
    • Marshall Coat (new colorways)
    • Killiman Vest (new colorways)
    • Pedrosa Pants
    • Plata Pants
    • Moreton Boots
    • Fairbairn Dress
    • Litten Dress
    • Helsby Gloves
    • O'Quinn Hat
    • Tiltham Hat
    • Diamondback Hat (new colorways)
  • New Time Limited Clothing Items have been added to the Wheeler, Rawson & Co. Catalogue:
    • Gator Hat (new and original colorways)
    • Ortega Vest
    • Strickland Boots (new and original colorways)
    • Vaquero Baroque Spurs

[July 28, 2020] New Content in Red Dead Online

  • The world of Red Dead Online continues to evolve with a new Frontier Pursuit featuring a unique path and activities to help you carve out a life for yourself on the frontier.
  • Naturalist:
    • The new Naturalist Specialist Role opens a new path around tracking, studying and hunting animals. Naturalists get access to a new role progression, gameplay and several items. To gain access to the Role, visit the Welcome Center in the town of Strawberry to purchase the Sample Kit from Harriet Davenport to get started.
  • Seven new Legendary Animal species, each with three different subspecies, have been added to Red Dead Online. Some subspecies can be found in the open world by purchasing maps from Harriet Davenport, while sightings of some rare subspecies may become available from Harriet as you progress through the Naturalist Role.
    • Cougar
    • Fox
    • Boar
    • Beaver
    • Wolf
    • Bison
    • Elk
  • Two new Naturalist Role related Free Roam Events have been added to Red Dead Online, and will become available via invites as you progress through the Naturalist Role:
    • Protect Legendary Animal: Work with other players to free and escort a Legendary Animal species from Poachers
    • Wild Animal Tagging: Cooperate with others to sedate and tag a certain number of animal species within the time limit
  • Both Harriet Davenport and Gus Macmillan have set up stores in several locations across the world of Red Dead Online. Visit Harriet's Naturalist Store to progress the Naturalist Role, purchase special tonics, and hear about unique missions to participate in. Alternatively, drop by Gus' Store with animal provisions to craft new clothing items, trinkets and more.
  • New missions to rescue animals from Poachers have been added to Red Dead Online. These can be started by talking to Harriet Davenport, and may appear dynamically throughout the world once you progress through the Naturalist Role.
  • The Wilderness Camp has been added to Red Dead Online, unlocked by progressing through the Naturalist Role. This allows players to create a temporary campfire at a nearby location in the open world, with the ability for up to four players to sit, cook, craft and rest.
  • Five new Dynamic Events have been added across the world of Red Dead Online for players to discover
  • New sets of Weekly Collections from Madam Nazar have been added for Collector Role players, which can be sold for an additional bonus
  • Several new Daily Challenges have been added to Red Dead Online in both the General Challenge and Role Challenge categories
  • Several new Awards related to Naturalist, Moonshiner and Collector Role content have been added to Red Dead Online
  • The Wheeler Rawson and Co. Club is available. Club membership is automatic and free, giving players rewards as they play during the Membership period from July 28th through October 19th, 2020.
  • The Outlaw Pass No. 3 is available through the Wheeler, Rawson & Co. Catalogue for even more perks and rewards. Everything you unlock during the Membership period from July 28th through October 19th, 2020 and acquire during that period will stay with you permanently. Visit the Benefits section of the Pause menu for details on Reward and Offer availability.
  • New items and variations of Clothing and Outfits have been added for male and female characters in Red Dead Online. These can be purchased from various places, including the stores of Gus Macmillan, Madam Nazar, General Stores and the Handheld Catalogue.
  • Several new Tonics have been added to Red Dead Online, which can be unlocked and purchased at Harriet's Naturalist Store by progressing through the Naturalist Role. These allow the player to control their weight loss and gain, increase resistance against weather effects and more.
  • Several Animal Trinkets have been added to Red Dead Online, which provide some permanent benefits to player stats. They can be purchased from Gus' Store by trading Legendary Animal provisions.
  • Several new Crafting Recipes have been added to Red Dead Online, which can be unlocked and purchased at Harriet's Naturalist Store by progressing through the Naturalist Role
  • One new Horse breed with six coat variations has been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through Naturalist Role rewards:
    • Gypsy Cob
  • Several new items of Horse Equipment such as Saddles and Saddle Bags have been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through Naturalist Role rewards
  • Two new weapons have been added to Red Dead Online, and can be purchased from the Gunsmith or the Handheld Catalogue:
    • Elephant Rifle
    • Improved Bow
  • Three new weapon variants have been added to Red Dead Online, and can be purchased and applied from the Gunsmith once unlocked:
    • Varmint Rifle – Naturalist Variant
    • Improved Bow – Horned Variant
    • Improved Bow – Wooden Inlay Variant
  • Several new weapon modifications have been added to Red Dead Online, and can be unlocked through Club Rewards and Outlaw Pass Rewards:
    • Components – Grip/Stock – Burled Grip
    • Styles – Metal Material – Tempered Steel
    • Styles – Engraving Material – Coloured Enamel (Red/Blue/Green/Yellow)
    • Styles – Wrap Material – Cloth (Sage/Cobalt)
  • The Advanced Camera has been added to Red Dead Online, purchasable from General Stores or the Handheld Catalogue. As well as improved manoeuvrability and the ability to use filters, it can be used to identify animals in the Animal Field Guide. Additional filters can be unlocked through Outlaw Pass rewards.
  • One new Hairstyle each has been added for male and female characters in Red Dead Online, as well as the addition of new Hair Accessories for female characters. These can be purchased and applied through any Barber.
    • Uncombed Balding (Male)
    • Tangled Locks (Female)
  • Six new Emotes have been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through various means. They can be purchased from the General Store or Handheld Catalogue:
    • Take Note
    • Confident Dance
    • Formal Dance
    • Thanks
    • Rock Paper Scissors
    • Beat Chest
  • One new walk style has been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through Outlaw Pass Rewards:
    • Drunk
  • Four new Camp Flags, one new Cripps Outfit and one new breed of Camp Dog have been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through various means. Once unlocked, these can be purchased from the Wilderness Outfitters at your Camp.
  • Three new Photo Studio Backdrops have been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through Outlaw Pass Rewards.
  • Four new Photo Studio Poses have been added to Red Dead Online and can be unlocked through Outlaw Pass Rewards.

PlayStation 4 Early Access Content:

  • Legendary Gabbro Horn Ram
  • Legendary Chalk Horn Ram
  • Legendary Rutile Horn Ram
  • Three Fossil Collections
  • Woodcote Poncho

Balancing and Improvements in Red Dead OnlineAccessibility Improvements

  • Adjusted colors and transparency of threat indicators on the Radar minimap to improve visibility for different display brightness and in-game lighting conditions. This change has also been made in Story Mode.
  • Holding the Circle/B button to exit the Pause Menu from any screen is now quicker, matching the speed of Catalog and Shop Menus.

Gameplay Improvements

  • 'Buy Max' and 'Buy Max Carried' options have been added to several consumable items in Shop Menus and the Catalogue for quicker purchases. The 'Buy Max Carried' option only considers held inventory space and not postbox space to prevent large accidental purchases.
  • Cooked Meat is now displayed in the Provisions section of the Item Wheel for quicker access
  • Improvements have been made to the Wardrobe system to allow more combinations and removals, including the ability for female characters to remove shirts while wearing corsets
  • Players can now Mercy Kill an animal that is bleeding out. This ability can be unlocked through the Naturalist Role.
  • Aim Assist options within the Settings Menu can now be changed while in a Red Dead Online session, but effects of this change will not apply until the player joins a new session
  • Reduced the chance of ragdoll when a player's horse starts sliding due to a steep slope in Red Dead Online

Matchmaking Improvements

  • Matchmaking improvements have been made, reducing wait times and the chance of empty Showdown Mode lobbies after selecting a Showdown Playlist from the Landing Page. If no suitable matches are found, you may load into a Red Dead Online session while Showdown Mode matchmaking continues in the background.
  • The system for Showdown Mode teams has been improved, making it more likely for Posse Members, Parties and Friends to be placed on the same team. In extreme cases, some group members may be placed on the opposite team to make sure teams are balanced and gameplay is fair for all.
  • Continued improvements have been made to network error handling when dealing with poor connections between players, which should eliminate or reduce the frequency of these errors: 0x20010004, 0x20001006, 0x40003002, 0x54553100, 0x99300027

Role Improvements

  • Moonshine Recipes can now be pinned to the Player Log Menu, allowing quicker access to check required ingredients
  • A 'Guest List' has been added near the door of the Moonshine Shack Bar, allowing the owner to quickly invite nearby players
  • Updates have been made to the randomization of Collectibles, including new locations for items dug up using the Pennington Field Shovel

Improvements – Story Mode

  • The Weapon Locker from Red Dead Online has been added to Story Mode, allowing players to remove any unused weapons. It is available for use at the player's camp from Chapter 2 onwards.

Daily Challenge Balancing

  • The following changes have been made, along with Menu improvements:
    • With the introduction of the Naturalist Role, up to 15 different Role Challenges will be provided each day, depending on current progression through each Role
    • A player can now complete a maximum of nine different Role Challenges each day, with the remainder being locked for the day once reaching this limit
    • The existing Challenge Goal for '7 Daily Challenges Completed' has been replaced by two separate Challenge Goals – One for completing seven General Challenges per day, and another for completing nine Role Challenges per day, with each providing additional Gold rewards
    • The streak system remains unchanged, and completing either a General or Role Challenge each day will keep the streak active

Economy Balancing

  • Alligators now provide two different types of provisions when skinned depending on the size of the animal and sell for different amounts at the Butcher. The new Small Alligator Skin item can be stored on horseback like other pelts.
  • 'Free Weapon Component' vouchers can no longer be used to purchase Variant skins for weapons at the Gunsmith

Red Dead Online FixesMatchmaking & Networking

  • Fixed several issues that resulted in players getting stuck on loading screens during transitions between Red Dead Online content
  • Fixed several network issues that should reduce the chance of encountering disconnects and poor matchmaking
  • Fixed an issue that caused an infinite loading screen when accepting an invite from another player while the player did not have access to online services due to profile restrictions
  • Fixed an issue with network synchronization when members of the ambient population are attacked or killed by wild animals
  • Fixed issues that may have caused some Posse members to not automatically be pulled into jobs/events triggered by the Posse leader

Role Content

  • Fixed an issue that prevented some players from gaining XP or money rewards from the Bounty Hunter Role after claiming the Role through the Twitch Prime promotion
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players' custom outfits being changed upon launching the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – The Certainty of Death and Taxes
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in Moonshine Sell Missions to not complete correctly upon delivering the Moonshine
  • Fixed several issues that resulted in players being unable to obtain the 'Poison Poppy's Moonshine' recipe
  • Fixed an issue where the game may incorrectly show the player as not owning a Moonshine Shack after matchmaking into a large Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no functionality after attempting to dig for a Collectible
  • Fixed an issue that caused players' Moonshine production to get stuck
  • Fixed an issue that caused some Collectibles to appear out of the map
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no 'Dig' button prompt when attempting to dig up a Collectible
  • Fixed an issue that prevented a Tarot Card Collectible near Emerald Ranch from being picked up
  • Fixed an issue that prevented rewards from being available after opening a treasure chest near Cattail pond
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players finding the Bounty target before reaching the scope-out location during Bounty Hunter Missions
  • Fixed issues that resulted in players being unable to interact with the Bounty Board
  • Fixed an issue that caused some Bounty Missions to not launch correctly after accepting the job which caused the mission to fail
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in a duplicate of players' characters to appear and fall through the map after watching the Collector intro cutscene
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players receiving incorrect messaging when opening the 'Antique Alcohol Bottles' map
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to enter the Saloon in Emerald Ranch due to an invisible wall preventing them from obtaining one of the 'Antique Alcohol Bottles'
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in Collectors being sent to an incorrect location that they had previously looted
  • Fixed text issues that were present in various languages during the Collector Free Roam Event – Condor Egg
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in goods being teleported to Valentine and appearing under the map after a player's Trader Wagon was destroyed
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players not being correctly rewarded after completing the Trader intro
  • Fixed an issue that caused the production meter to not correctly refill after completing a Trader Resupply Mission
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Mission to get stuck on the objective 'Take Out the Bandits' in the Trader Sell Mission – Bluewater Marsh
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to 'Dismiss' or 'Call Out' their Hunting Wagon
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to stow the 'Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep' in their Hunting Wagon
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Trader Weapon Locker prompt 'Equip Off-Hand Sidearm' to be unresponsive
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players incorrectly having no sidearm equipped after interacting with the Trader Weapon Locker
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to start the Moonshiner Role after completing one Sell Mission as a Trader
  • Fixed several issues with incorrect behaviors and animations for Marcel and Maggie inside the Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players not being able to interact with Maggie after being invited to the owner's Shack
  • Fixed several issues with interaction and synchronization of instrument items in the Moonshine Shack bar
  • Fixed transaction errors that occurred when purchasing Moonshine Shack upgrades on PC
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the incorrect drink being poured at the bar when pouring a drink for the first time at the Moonshine Shack Bar
  • Fixed incorrect tool tip text that was present when inside the Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to enter their own Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players not being kicked out from their own Moonshine Shack if they joined a posse whose leader had a Shack in the same location
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Enter with Posse' option to not work as intended when entering the Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players losing functionality after interacting with another player while drunk in the Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to buy/claim the band expansion for the Moonshine Shack
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being forced out the Moonshine Business Menu when the player has '20/20 Bottles'
  • Fixed an issue that caused certain drop-off areas to cause damage to the Delivery Wagon during Moonshine Sell Missions
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players losing horse bonding after launching a Moonshiner Co-op Mission as a posse
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players incorrectly being placed and getting stuck in the Moonshine Bar upon completing a Moonshiner Co-op Mission
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being stuck with no functionality after another player started spectating them during the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than Shine
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players getting stuck on the objective 'Dispatch the Revenue Agents' in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than 'Shine
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players getting stuck on a black screen after the team lost all of their lives in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than 'Shine
  • Fixed an issue that caused enemies to not spawn blocking Mission progression in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than 'Shine
  • Fixed an issue that caused the horse wagon with Lem inside to run away during the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than 'Shine
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to interact with Lem blocking Mission progression in the in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Blood is Thicker Than 'Shine
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in no players being shown the end cutscene if one player got disconnected during the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – A Bitter Means to The Bitter End
  • Fixed an issue that caused the enemies in the Mission to not be hostile in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – A Bitter Means to the Bitter End
  • Fixed an issue that caused the enemies in the Mission to not be hostile in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – The Certainty of Death and Taxes
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to douse the last area blocking Mission progression in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – The Certainty of Death and Taxes
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to inspect the club in the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Where There's Smoke There's Firewater
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Team Lives' UI to be missing during the Moonshiner Co-op Mission – Where There's Smoke There's Firewater
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being stuck on the objective 'Brawl with the Rival Moonshiners' in the Moonshiner Bootlegger Mission – Bar Brawl
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no objective UI during the Moonshiner Bootlegger Mission – Bar Brawl
  • Fixed an issue that caused the objective characters to not follow the player blocking Mission progression in the Moonshiner Bootlegger Mission – Kidnapped Buyers
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having limited functionality after launching the Moonshiner Bootlegger Mission – Kidnapped Buyers
  • Fixed an issue that caused the feed image for 'Toxic Moonshine' to not appear correctly
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Break Free' & 'Surrender' UI to flicker on screen while being captured during a player Bounty
  • Fixed an issue that caused Bounty events to start incorrectly for players who had not purchased a Bounty licence
  • Fixed missing objective text that was present during some Bounty Missions
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to drop the body blocking Mission progression during the Bounty Hunter Free Roam Event – Day of Reckoning
  • Fixed an issue that caused Gamertags to flicker on the Leaderboard after completing the Bounty Hunter Free Roam Event – Manhunt


  • Fixed an issue that caused players to sometimes get stuck on a black loading screen when launching Missions and other Red Dead Online content
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to use their owned weapons in the Free Roam Mission – Paid Killing
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Mission immediately restarting upon completion of the Free Roam Mission – Coach Holdup
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to deliver the mail during the Free Roam Mission – Delivery
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Mission to not fail as it should after failing the Free Roam Mission – Early Execution
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players repeatedly respawning in the same location after being killed by the bear during the Free Roam Mission – On the Hunt
  • Fixed incorrect text that was present during the Free Roam Mission – On the Hunt
  • Fixed an issue that stopped the objective area from changing in the Free Roam Mission – Recovery
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to cut free hogtied ambient population in the Free Roam Mission – Rescue
  • Fixed an issue that caused Free Roam Hideouts to not disappear after completing them
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to dual wield during Free Roam Events
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to change their preferred team in the lobby of the Showdown Mode – Public Enemy
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in horses being blipped as hostile in the Showdown Mode – Hostile Territory
  • Fixed inaccurate feed messages that were present in the Showdown Mode – Plunder
  • Fixed issues that caused the Leaderboard to be incorrect in the Showdown Mode – Plunder
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in one team being able to unfairly score points in the Showdown Mode – Spoils of War
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to return a dropped bag back to their base in the Showdown Mode – Spoils of War
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the purple team being unable to damage the orange team's base with explosives in the Showdown Mode – Up in Smoke
  • Fixed issues that caused unresponsive button prompts that were present in Showdown Mode lobbies
  • Fixed an issue that may have caused carriable objective bags to fall through the map in some Showdown Modes
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players clipping through the map during the Co-op Mission – Where Your Morals Lead You
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Marshall getting stuck behind a door blocking Mission progression in the Co-op Mission – Highly Illegal and Highly Moral
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players getting stuck on the objective 'Protect Marshal Davies, Sheriff Freeman and Old Man Jones' in the Co-op Mission – The Hanging of Tom Davies
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to reach Sheriff Freeman in the Co-op Mission – The Hanging of Tom Davies
  • Fixed an issue that caused objective ambient population to T-pose in the Co-op Mission – The Hanging of Tom Davies
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in Sheriff Freeman getting stuck in the Co-op Mission – The Hanging of Tom Davies
  • Fixed an issue that blocked the Mission from progressing after hogtieing the outlaw during the Co-op Mission – If the Hat Fits…
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to collect the money in the Co-op Mission – If the Hat Fits…
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to examine underneath the rock in the Co-op Mission – If the Hat Fits…
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Mission being unable to progress after letting the outlaw go in the Co-op Mission – If the Hat Fits…
  • Fixed an issue that caused the outlaw to not move in the Co-op Mission – If the Hat Fits…
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to use owned weapons in the Co-op Mission – Kerosene, Tar and Greed
  • Fixed an issue that caused objective characters to get stuck in the Co-op Mission – Kerosene, Tar and Greed
  • Fixed an issue that caused the bank vault to not open as intended in the Co-op Mission – Banks Don't Rob Themselves
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in Horley not being blipped on the map in the Co-op Mission – Kill Them, Each and Every One
  • Fixed an issue that caused some Co-op Missions to have no dialogue
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to take the Bounty alive in the Legendary Bounty Mission – Barbarella Alcazar
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in missing objective blips in the Legendary Bounty Mission – Barbarella Alcazar
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Bounty spawning under the map in the Legendary Bounty Mission – Philip Carlier
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having limited functionality in the Bounty Mission – Philip Carlier
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in some bounties spawning in incorrect locations during some Bounty Missions
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Bounty to not enter the freight station as intended in the Legendary Bounty Mission – Etta Doyle
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Bounty to disappear off the player's horse causing the Mission to fail in the Bounty Mission – Sergio Vinceza
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Bounty being unable to be carried in the Bounty Mission – Sergio Vinceza
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to launch the Posse Versus – Biggest Fish Contest
  • Fixed issues that resulted in players being unable to start a Posse Versus – Posse Feud
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Beggar to disappear in the Random Event – Beggar
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to take the map from the bandit in the Red Dead Online Intro
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no functionality after placing a waypoint during the Red Dead Online intro
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in treasure maps being removed from players' inventories if the player owns two of the same map
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players receiving a payout if they DNF during a Race

Awards and Daily Challenges

  • Fixed an issue where certain completed Awards were unable to be reset
  • Fixed an issue where the 'Special Camp Stew' Daily Challenge would not increment correctly with some recipes
  • Fixed an issue that caused the award 'Make Stews at Camp' to not increment correctly
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Medium Bounty Mission completed' Daily Challenge to only increment when completing a Hard Bounty Mission
  • Fixed an issue where the 'Recipes Crafted' Daily Challenge notifications would show an incorrect number after exiting the Crafting Menu
  • Fixed an issue where the 'Visit Colter' Daily Challenge would sometimes not trigger upon arrival
  • Fixed an issue that may have caused the player to get stuck at 'Processing Transaction' when changing their Camp theme to complete a Daily Challenge
  • Fixed an issue where some fully completed Awards were unable to be unpinned from the Player Log Menu
  • Fixed an issue that caused the '0/2 Goods Sold to a Local Buyer' Daily Challenge to complete prematurely
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Rescue Someone in Need' Daily Challenge to not count after rescuing someone in a Random Event

Story Mode

  • Fixed an issue that prevented progression of the Story Mode Mission – The First Shall Be Last when using some display modes or multiple monitors on PC and Stadia
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in John's Cattleman Revolver being forcibly equipped after the bear encounter in the Story Mode Mission – A Really Big Bastard
  • Fixed an issue that caused animal pelts to persist on player's horses after choosing to replay a Mission which caused issues when characters would try to get onto the back of players' horses

GeneralGame Stability and Performance

  • Fixed numerous issues that caused game crashes, freezes and other stability problems during both Story Mode and Red Dead Online
  • Fixed a crash that may have occurred when disconnecting or switching display monitors on PC and Stadia

Game Menus and User Interface

  • Fixed an issue that caused some Menus to display the Outlaw Pass rank from a previous season instead of the current one
  • Fixed an issue that caused a delay in selection when attempting to quickly select and use items on the Weapon/Item Wheel
  • Fixed an issue that caused invalid Video Memory values to display on the Graphics Settings Menu for some PC platform configurations
  • Removed the erroneous 'Third Person Field of View' option in the Camera Settings Menu that displayed for console players, as it had no in-game effect and was intended for PC players only
  • Fixed an issue that caused incorrect information to display when browsing some Store and Player Menus
  • Fixed an issue with an incorrect ammo counter displaying for the Flammable Moonshine item on the Weapon Wheel
  • Fixed several issues that occurred with navigation and tab selection when browsing the Satchel Menu
  • Fixed several issues on PC systems that caused some user interface elements to be incorrectly sized, misaligned or scroll slowly when running at 4K and ultrawide resolutions
  • Fixed issue with selection and navigation for several Menus
  • Fixed an issue with slow cursor movement on the Pause Menu Map that occurred for Stadia users
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'Discard' button prompt to be present for non-discardable key items in the Satchel
  • Fixed an issue with incorrect icons and text for some blips on the Pause Menu Map
  • Fixed several other miscellaneous issues with Menus
  • Fixed an issue where the Pause Menu Map would not be centered on the player and play area when opened during some Showdown Modes
  • Fixed an issue with incorrect and inconsistent icon sizes for items on the transaction feed
  • Fixed an issue that caused some objective and enemy blips to not be visible on the Pause Menu Map or Radar minimap during some Red Dead Online content
  • Fixed an issue with loading of the Landing Screen on PC and Stadia if the player had manually deleted their save games and profile
  • Fixed an issue that prevented tile images from loading on the Landing Screen after being disconnected from a session
  • Fixed an issue that caused Collectible notifications to not highlight the correct Compendium item when accessed
  • Fixed an issue that caused overlapping UI elements when showing currency
  • Fixed an issue that caused 'Camp' to be missing from the index of the pause Menu
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Camp Location UI to be missing from the Player Menu

Graphics and Visual Effects

  • Fixed an issue that caused flickering water and other graphical corruption on some PC platform configurations.
  • Fixed an issue that caused Cinematic Camera letterboxing to become stuck on some PC systems with multi-monitor or ultrawide display configurations
  • Fixed an issue that may have caused some objects or bodies to appear temporarily invisible in certain circumstances
  • Fixed an issue that cut off some screen rendering when using some multi-monitor surround setups on PC and Stadia
  • Fixed an issue that caused the world to render incorrectly when ragdolling on top of some buildings in Valentine
  • Fixed an issue with flickering textures and shadows when inspecting some held items on PC and Stadia
  • Fixed an issue with fading and blurred textures when switching between weapon engraving styles at the Gunsmith

Items, Clothing and Emotes

  • Fixed an issue with incorrect animations when equipping the Metal Detector while on horseback
  • Fixed an issue where fur effects on some items of clothing would not be visible in reflections
  • Fixed multiple clipping issues with several clothing items
  • Fixed issues with the tooltip for suspenders
  • Fixed an issue that caused characters to be missing their shirt in the Character Creator
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to maintain their weapons
  • Fixed issues that were present when players wore spurs with chaps
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to change their outfit
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to equip footwear
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no outfits available after creating a custom outfit

Photo Mode

  • Fixed an issue with inconstant camera exposure settings when entering Photo Mode

Horses and Vehicles

  • Fixed an issue that may have caused some player-owned horses to appear smaller than intended in prolonged Red Dead Online sessions
  • Fixed an issue where player-owned horses may be frozen and unable to move after mounting them in a Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an issue that may have caused corrupted textures to appear on some player-owned wagons
  • Fixed an issue where the player was unable to whistle for their horse for several seconds after putting away a held item or map
  • Fixed an issue that caused some wagons and carts to appear blurry and low-resolution when approaching them on PC and Stadia


  • Fixed an issue that resulted in discounted items to incorrectly display as their original price
  • Fixed an issue that may have prevented players from purchasing some discounted items despite owning the correct amount of currency
  • Fixed multiple transaction errors that occurred when buying items in Shops on PC
  • Fixed an issue that prevented the 'Horses for Courses' achievement/trophy from triggering correctly in some situations
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being presented with unresponsive button prompts after purchasing the Moonshiner variant of the Sawed-Off Shotgun at the Gunsmith
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Moonshiner variant textures to be visibly missing from the Sawed-Off Shotgun in the Gunsmith Menu after purchasing it
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being stuck with no functionality after opening the Gunsmith catalogue
  • Fixed an issue that caused the preview image of the Hunting Knife to be missing from the 'Customize' Menu in the Gunsmith
  • Fixed texture issues that were present on some long-armed weapons in the Gunsmith
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to apply leather or cloth wraps to any weapons in the Gunsmith
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in some items to incorrectly appear as 'Owned' in Madam Nazar's Shop
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players having no prompts to access Madam Nazar's Shop
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players not being given the photos they were charged for in the Photo Studio
  • Fixed an issue that may have caused some players in a Posse to perform incorrect poses when taking group photos at the Photo Studio
  • Fixed inconsistencies between the monetary value and the material value of certain items at the Camp Butcher and the Butcher
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to donate materials to their Posse Leaders' Butcher table
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to access the Butcher table
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to purchase the High Roller Revolver at the Fence
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players incorrectly receiving multiple copies of an item they purchased at the Bait & Tackle Shop
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to change their hair style or color at the Barber
  • Fixed issues that resulted in some hairstyles becoming invisible after changing hair at the Barber
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the Sabretooth Mask not being greyed out for players that did not own the Outlaw Pass No. 2 at the Stable
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Stable doors in Valentine to not open if a player ran into them
  • Fixed an issue that caused prices to disappear in the Stable
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in props missing from the Emerald Ranch Shady Shop
  • Fixed an issue that caused the prices in the Buy Menu at the Travelling Saleswoman to disappear
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Camp Butcher Table UI to remain on screen
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Camp Butcher Table to disappear
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in lawmen not noticing wanted players while inside some Shops
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in some items not being correctly greyed out in Shop Menus when the player is holding the maximum amount
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to adjust their outfit in the Wardrobe
  • Fixed an issue that caused the weapon customisation option 'Grip' to be incorrectly replaced with 'Leather'
  • Fixed an issue with delayed exit animations after exiting Maggie's Moonshiner Store Menu
  • Fixed an issue that could have caused players to get stuck on the Cripps Trading Co. Menu if opened while other Missions and Random Events were in progress

Weapons and Combat

  • Fixed an issue that caused a translucent square to appear around the weapon reticle when aiming towards bright backgrounds
  • Fixed an issue where it may not have been possible to perform gun-spinning tricks on PC and Stadia while using keyboard and mouse controls
  • Fixed an issue that may have prevented gun-spinning tricks after assigning some weapons through Quick Select
  • Fixed an issue where only one weapon may spin when performing tricks with dual-wielded sidearms
  • Fixed an issue that caused inconsistent damage when attacking horses and other animals with melee weapons while in a Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an animation issue that could occur when watching other players attempt to execute someone
  • Fixed an issue where the 'Automatic Pin Switching' option would not work correctly with some combinations of dual-wielded LeMat Revolvers
  • Fixed an issue where the player would not swap to backup thrown weapons after running out of ammo in certain Showdown Modes with limited weapon loadouts
  • Fixed an issue that caused animation problems when multiple players attempt to tackle/execute another player at the same time in a Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an issue that allowed Toxic Moonshine clouds to ignore Posse friendly fire rules in some cases
  • Fixed an issue that caused camera problems when tacking/shoving another player while in deep snow


  • Fixed several further issues that may have caused reduced animal populations in some large Red Dead Online sessions
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players' camps being invisible despite having a camp blip present
  • Fixed an issue that may have prevented the Eagle Eye+ ability upgrade from working correctly after respawning in a Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an issue that made some Red Dead Online character features appear smaller when running at low texture quality on PC and Stadia
  • Fixed an issue with incorrect animations playing on some birds while in a Red Dead Online session
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being returned to Free Roam after trying to change their appearance
  • Fixed messaging on death screens to account for languages that have masculine/feminine words
  • Fixed an issue that caused ambient population to pop/flicker after a player let them flee just as they started to execute them
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players needing to place their camp every time they loaded back into Free Roam
  • Fixed issues that resulted in players being unable to pitch camps
  • Fixed an issue that caused the Special Horse Reviver to not give golden cores/overpower horse health core upon reviving a horse
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players receiving the error 'Posse Formation Failed' and the wrong camp location upon creating a permanent posse
  • Fixed an issue that caused an unresponsive 'Select' prompt when attempting to reform their persistent posse
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players getting stuck on the alert screen 'Alert: This Activity can only be triggered by the Posse Leader.'
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players not being in their selected outfit when choosing to lead their persistent posse via the landing screen
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to accept in-game invites whilst in Story Mode cutscenes
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in incorrect information being present on the 'Collections' tab of the Satchel
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in the camera getting stuck after fast travelling
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'View Photos' prompt to not work correctly
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players continuously falling through the map
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to equip the metal detector
  • Fixed an issue that caused some camp blips to incorrectly appear as transparent
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players incorrectly losing some horse bonding XP
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to purchase ammo in lobbies
  • Fixed an issue that resulted in players being unable to call their personal vehicle out [/update]

Source: Rockstar

Assassin's Creed Valhalla should include these 5 fun Viking facts

One of the most fascinating things about the Vikings is just how little we actually know about them. In contrast to the calm, confident and certain manner demonstrated by our primary school teachers when they regaled us with all things Viking, little of what they told us is based on that much evidence. Instead, a lot of what we have come to regard as being definite truths about the Vikings is based on circumstantial evidence at best, often from sources written centuries after their time.

There's tons of fascinating new insights and observations being provided by historians and archaeologists every single day but the fact remains that there's an awful lot of Viking deeds which are still unknown. It is this what makes the Viking era such a brilliant setting for an Assassin's Creed game. For a series that prides itself in shining a light on – and offering a fantastical explanation for – the events of the past, this is a historical period rife with mystery.

So, here's a list – the internet loves a list, right? Especially a numbered one – of five wonderful Viking facts that should absolutely be included in Assassin's Creed: Valhalla. Now, do bear in mind that some of these have only the teeniest amount of historical evidence to support them but then that's what a good Assassin's Creed game is all about; blending history with fantasy to create something new and unique.

Dancing on Ice

Fun fact to share with your loved ones over Sunday dinner: Vikings loved skiing. There is actual, genuine archaeological evidence that rudimentary skis were invented over 6000 years ago in Scandinavia. By the time of Assassin's Creed Valhalla, set in the 9th Century AD, it is likely that the Vikings were using skis for both a popular form of transportation and a source of leg-breaking fun. There was even a Viking god of skiing; Ullr. Not too much is known about this fella, but he is always depicted with skis and a bow.

Just imagine a section in Assassin's Creed Valhalla where our plucky protagonist, Eivor, has to don a pair of skis to escape a horde of Saxon warriors. As you whip down a mountain at breakneck speed, with only a pair of thick twigs strapped to your feet to keep you upright, you must use your bow with pinpoint accuracy to strike down your pursuers. There could even be an entire optional objective that sees Eivor rack up points with his or her sick ski skills; unleashing 540 Tail Grabs, spread eagles, and corkscrew 720s to climb to the top of an online leaderboard.

Keep it clean

Assassin's Creed Valhalla will have a feature in which players can share their custom raiders with others online. You'll be able to sit back, relax, and know that your menacing mercenary will be on hand to help out your pals in their game. Now who knows the level of customisation that will be on offer when the game finally launches but one thing which should absolutely be included is that you can make your custom warrior look very clean, plucked and well-manicured.

This is because Vikings were big on personal hygiene and appearance. Much more so than many of their historical contemporaries. Archaeologists have discovered combs, ear cleaners, razors and tweezers at burial sites. Vikings even went as far as to bathe once a week – outrageous, I know. In Old Norse 'Saturday' is 'laugardagr', which means 'bathing day'. One account, usually credited to an abbot of St Albans states:

"Thanks to their habit of combing their hair every day, of bathing every Saturday and regularly changing their clothes, [the Vikings] were able to undermine the virtue of married women and even seduce the daughters of nobles to be their mistresses."

Living in America

DLC. Let's face it, if it's anything like previous entries in the series, then Assassin's Creed Valhalla is going to have more DLC than you can wave a decapitated monk's head at. Thing is, after having spent tens of hours exploring England, we might need a fresh environment to raid. Why not America?

After all, the Vikings beat Christopher Columbus to America by approximately five hundred years. Leif Erikson, a Norse explorer likely born in Iceland, established a settlement in 'Vinland', often considered as being located on the coast of North America. Now just imagine his epic voyage re-created in-game – that would be a chunk of add-on content that would definitely have me reaching for my wallet.

Admittedly, there's a significant period of time that separates Leif Erikson from Eivor but I'm sure that's nothing that a bit of Animus nonsense can't resolve.

Weirdest Mini-Game QTE EVER

I don't like QTEs (quick-time events) in games. They feel a bit lazy and lose all dramatic impact when you repeatedly fail at the exact same time just because you'd didn't tap 'X' fast enough. But maybe the reason I don't like them is because they just haven't been set in the right context; they haven't included cow tail pulling.

I only have one academic source for this insight: my much thumbed through and well-worn copy of 'Horrible Histories Vicious Vikings' by the legendary Terry Deary. In this educational masterpiece there is a section on Viking Law. Apparently, "fights were very popular in the courts of Denmark and Sweden. But if a man was beaten, and wanted to have his life spared, then he had to go through a harsh test". What was this test? Basically, you'd shave off all the hair from a wild cow's tail. Then you'd cover Daisy's – all cows are called Daisy – tail in grease. At this point the person who lost the fight, let's call him Dave – not the most Viking of names but it's the first one I thought of – must cover his feet in grease too. Then Dave must grip Daisy's tail and hold on for dear life. Daisy is then whipped to make her so angry she charges. If Dave can hold on to Daisy's tail until she calms down then his can keep his life, and, for good measure, the cow too. If Dave can't hold on then he'll probably be trampled to death under Daisy's formidable tail.

Now, just picture this scene playing out as a QTE Mini-game in Assassin's Creed Valhalla; the player frantically bashing buttons and twiddling thumb sticks to keep a tight grip on Daisy's waggling tail. It would be awesome, right? I can smell the GOTY award already.

No Horns Please, We're Vikings

It's probably fairly common knowledge by now but let's just be clear: Vikings didn't have horns on their helmets. When I first learnt this I was shocked, appalled and ever so slightly nauseous. But copious retching doesn't change the fact that there was nary a horn to be seen on a Viking helm. Horns on a helmet would be ridiculous: the additional weight would make fighting in battle even more arduous. Not to mention the fact that the horns would render a warrior horribly off balance, likely to cause them to slip on some mud and land embarrassingly prostrate at the feet of an amused Saxon. All of that doesn't stop me from feeling the way I feel though; I prefer my Vikings with horns.

How about this as a compromise: whilst Vikings didn't wear elaborate headgear into battle, their gods certainly could have done. Assassin's Creed loves to fuse a culture's myths into game mechanics, so why not include different god's helmets that imbue Eivor with special abilities? A winged Thor helm that grants Eivor lightning powers, who wouldn't want that? Just watch out for Marvel's lawyers, they are more devastating than a Thanos finger click.

Assassin's Creed Valhalla will launch later this year on November 17th, coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Google Stadia. A next-gen version is also planned for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

Playing with History is our ongoing series spotlighting video games and the real-world people and events that inspire them. From the harrowing historic backdrop fuelling Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice, to the existence of zombies in Days Gone, and a deep dive into Jurassic World Evolution's T-Rex, join us as continue to expand our timeline. Why not explore the real-world history behind Ghosts of Tsushima, or learn just how authentic the game is, according to a samurai expert.

Something for the Weekend – 15/08/20

I'm very much enjoying the drop in temperatures and rain showers of the last couple days, but looking at the Formula 1, they've jumped out of the frying pan of Silverstone in a heatwave to the first of Barcelona!

Will we have more tyre wear shenanigans this weekend? Can someone spring a surprise in qualifying? I'm looking forward to finding out at the end of this second triple-header.

Now then, let's crack on with this week's gaming news.

In the News This Week


We've got five codes apiece for iOS and Android versions of WST Snooker, the latest snooker game from Lab42 and Sumo Digital. Head here to find out how to enter the giveaway.

Games in Review

We had a pretty full slate of review this week, covering all manner of different genres and topics.

And we also had a documentary review telling the origins of the THPS franchise:

Featured Articles

Just because we had a bunch of reviews doesn't mean we didn't have space for anything else. Ade's kicked off our weekend with 5 Viking facts that should be included in Assassin's Creed Valhalla, while Tom went hands on with the intriguing Dreamscaper, blending action RPG gameplay with Persona-like relationship creation.

Dom ventured into the teensy tiny world of Grounded, before going up against the "despicable, speedrunning nightmare" of Okunoka Madness, and loving every second of it! Alan joined us this week to share his thoughts on the nosy X-raying ghost shenanigans of I Am Dead.

I pondered just how bad Halo Infinite's delay is for Xbox Series X in the long runwhile Aran spoke to director Ludvig Gür about the Pretending I'm a Superman documentary.

Jim dove into Solaris Offworld Combat, the next VR shooter from the makers of Firewall: Zero Hour, while Miguel dove into the Limited Run VA-11 HALL-A Collector's Edition for Switch for an unboxing.

I took a look at the upcoming Train Sim World 2, as Steve got a different perspective on the life of creepy crawlies in Metamorphosis.

And we rounded out a week full of features with What We Played

Trailer Park

FIFA 21 career mode revealed in latest trailer

Cyberpunk 2077 Lifepaths, weapons and SAMURAI chrome rock band videos revealed

Sam Fisher is joining Rainbow Six Siege

Apex Legends Season 6 Boosted gameplay revealed

Your Achievements

Here's what you in our community has been up to this week:

  • Crazy_Del is just one trophy away from the Fall Guys platinum, all of which will depend on the in-game store updates. There's also be one trophy waiting for him in Skater XL and a handful of them in NFS Heat.
  • ron_mcphatty has picked up three wins in Fall Guys and is aiming to hit level 40 before he tires of its light and fun battle royale.
  • Dreams little Dreams was TSBonyman who's resting up after a shoulder injury.
  • tactical20 has really got the hang of Skater XL, to the point that he's joined an online team based in North Carolina.
  • And finally Andrewww has been battling through more of The Last of Us Part II, while the kids have been enjoying the chaos of Fall Guys.

I hope you have a good (and relatively cool) weekend and I'll see you on the other side!

Epic's next free games are God's Trigger and Enter the Gungeon

If you're looking to expand that endless digital library of PC games, Epic have you covered. Again.

This week's Epic Game Store freebies are now live with both Remnant: From the Ashes and The Alto Collection up for grabs.

Honestly, it's a great selection this week and if you were hot on the trigger you will have also bagged A Total War Saga: Troy for free within its first 24 hours of launch. The strategy sequel scored a mythic 8/10 in our launch review.

So what can we expect next week? The Epic Games Store will see the return of Enter the Gungeon as well as top-down shooter, God's Trigger. Both will be available to download and keep forever before the next game(s) inevitably drop seven days after.

You can check out the full list of Epic free games below which started with Subnautica in December 2018. Click on the game titles to read our reviews:

God's Trigger August 20-27, 2020
Enter the Gungeon August 20-27, 2020
The Alto Collection August 13-20, 2020
Remnant: From the Ashes August 13-20, 2020
A Total War Saga: Troy August 13-14, 2020
Wilmot's Warehouse August 6-13, 2020
Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP July 30 – August 6, 2020
Barony July 30 – August 6, 2020
20XX July 30 – August 6, 2020
Next Up Hero July 23-30, 2020
Tacoma July 23-30, 2020
Torchlight II July 16-23, 2020
Lifeless Planet: Premier Edition July 9-16, 2020
The Escapists 2 July 9-16, 2020
Killing Floor 2 June 9-16, 2020
Hue July 2-9, 2020
Stranger Things 3 June 25-July 2, 2020
AER Memories of Old June 18-25, 2020
Ark: Survival Evolved June 11-18, 2020
Samurai Shodown NeoGeo Collection June 11-18, 2020
Overcooked June 4-11, 2020
Borderlands: The Handsome Collection May 28-June 4, 2020
Civilization VI May 21-28, 2020
Grand Theft Auto V May 14-21, 2020
Death Coming May 7-14, 2020
Crashlands April 30-May 7, 2020
Amnesia: The Dark Descent April 30-May 7, 2020
For the King April 23-30, 2020
Just Cause 4 April 16-23, 2020
Wheels of Aurelia April 16-23, 2020
Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments April 9-16, 2020
Close to the Sun April 9-16, 2020
Gone Home April 2-9, 2020
Drawful 2 April 2-9, 2020
Hob April 2-9, 2020
Totally Reliable Delivery Service April 1-8, 2020
World War Z March 26-April 2, 2020
Torment x Punisher March 26-April 2, 2020
Figment March 26-April 2, 2020
Watch Dogs March 19-26, 2020
The Stanley Parable March 19-26, 2020
A Short Hike March 12-19, 2020
Mutazione March 12-19, 2020
Anodyne 2 March 12-19, 2020
Gonner March 5-12, 2020
Offworld Trading Company March 5-12, 2020
Inner Space February 27-March 5, 2020
Faeria February 20-27, 2020
Assassin's Creed Syndicate February 20-27, 2020
Aztez February 13-20, 2020
Kingdom Come: Deliverance February 13-20, 2020
Ticket to Ride February 6-13, 2020
Carcassonne February 6-13, 2020
Farming Simulator 19 January 30-February 6, 2020
The Bridge January 23-30, 2020
Horace January 16-23, 2020
Sundered: Eldritch Edition January 9-16, 2020
Darksiders Warmastered Edition January 1-9, 2020
Darksiders 2 Dethinitive Edition January 1-9, 2020
Steep January 1-9, 2020
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair December 31, 2019
Hello Neighbor December 30, 2019
The Talos Principle December 29, 2019
Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun December 28, 2019
Hyper Light Drifter December 27, 2019
FTL: Faster Than Light December 26, 2019
Totally Accurate Battle Simulator December 25, 2019
Celeste December 24, 2019
Ape Out December 23, 2019
Little Inferno December 22, 2019
Superhot December 21, 2019
Towerfall Ascension December 20, 2019
Into the Breach December 19, 2019
The Wolf Among Us December 12-19, 2019
The Escapists December 12-19, 2019
Jotun: Valhalla Edition December 6-12, 2019
Rayman Legends November 29-December 6, 2019
Bad North November 21-29, 2019
The Messenger November 14-21, 2019
Ruiner November 7-14, 2019
Nuclear Throne November 7-14, 2019
Costume Quest October 31-November 7, 2019
Soma October 31-November 7, 2019
Layers of Fear October 24-October 31, 2019
Q.U.B.E.2 October 24-October 31, 2019
Alan Wake: American Nightmare October 17-24, 2019
Observer October 17-24, 2019
Surviving Mars October 10-17, 2019
Minit October 3-10, 2019
Metro 2033 Redux September 26-October 3, 2019
Everything September 26-October 3, 2019
Lego Batman Trilogy September 19-26, 2019
Batman: Arkham Collection September 19-26, 2019
Conarium September 12-19, 2019
ABZU September 5-12, 2019
The End is Nigh September 5-12, 2019
Celeste August 29-September 5, 2019
Inside August 29-September 5, 2019
Fez August 22-29, 2019
Hyper Light Drifter August 15-22, 2019
Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden August 15-22, 2019
GNOG August 8-15, 2019
For Honor August 2-9, 2019
Alan Wake August 2-9, 2019
This War of Mine July 25-August 2, 2019
Moonlighter July 25-August 2, 2019
Limbo July 18-July 25, 2019
Torchlight July 11-18, 2019
Overcooked July 4-11, 2019
Last Day of June June 27-July 4, 2019
Rebel Galaxy June 20-27, 2019
Enter the Gungeon June 13-20, 2019
Kingdom: New Lands June 6-13, 2019
City of Brass May 30-6, 2019
Rime May 23-30, 2019
Stories Untold May 16-23, 2019
World of Goo May 2-16, 2019
Transistor April 18-May 2, 2019
The Witness April 4-18, 2019
Oxenfree March 21-April 4, 2019
Slime Rancher March 7-21, 2019
Thimbleweed Park February 21-March 7, 2019
Axiom Verge February 7-21, 2019
The Jackbox Party Pack January 24-February 7, 2019
What Remains of Edith Finch January 11-24, 2019
Super Meat Boy December 28, 2018-January 10, 2019
Subnautica December 12-27, 2018

The Epic Games Launcher also hosts to a variety of free-to-play games including Dauntless, SMITE, Magic The Gathering Arena, and of course, Fortnite.

Source: Epic Games

Solaris Offworld Combat has been delayed by a month

First Contact Entertainment has announced that it is changing the release date for its upcoming VR multiplayer shooter Solaris Offworld Combat, with the Oculus Quest date now set for September 24th. The original release date was August 27th. This date only applies to the Oculus version with the PSVR release date yet to be confirmed. The reason for the delay is due to First Contact Entertainment requiring a bit more development time. The statement is below.

"We'd like to provide a short development update for Solaris Offworld Combat. In order that the day 1 play experience meets our expectations, we have made a small adjustment to our release plan. The new release date for Solaris Offworld Combat is September 24th 2020. We look forward to sharing what we've been building, with all of you."

We recently spoke to First Contact Entertainment Game Director Damoun Shabestari about Solaris Offworld Combat.

"Games are providing deeper mechanics and longevity through content updates without sequels. I believe arena shooters can come back to a popular gaming space so long as it has some social and seasonal updates attached to it. Bethesda does a great job of this with Quake Champions, and I think players enjoy what they're doing. I really hope we see more of that.

There is a lot that is taken into consideration when it comes to how we treat player locomotion. The type of gameplay is a huge part of how we start player movement; additionally we factor in the title's art style, lighting, animation sets, and audio. Solaris is quick and energetic where players need to take advantage of flanks and teleporter routes to take and hold the Control Point."

You can read the full Solaris Offworld Combat interview here.

Source: Twitter

G.I. Joe: Operation Blackout is coming this October for PC and consoles

There is a new third-person shooter on the way and it is based on a classic IP. Hasbro, GameMill, and Maximum Games are releasing G.I. Joe: Operation Blackout for PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Switch with a confirmed date of October 13th. A trailer shows the game in action and it looks like it could be a fun little game. G.I. Joe: Operation Blackout will feature both a campaign mode with 18 missions, and multiplayer modes. The campaign can be played in local co-op. You can watch the trailer below.

There will be 12 playable characters to choose from including Duke, Snake Eyes, Cobra Commander, Destro, Roadblock, and Storm Shadow, with each having access to their own special abilities. The multiplayer modes will include King of the Hill, Capture The Flag, and Assault. The locations in the game will be recognisable to anyone that watched the cartoon including Cobra Headquarters and the U.S.S. Flagg. However, if you're expecting big multiplayer fare then there will be some disappoinment. According to the official site, the multiplayer will be limited to 4-player local

There have been some attempts to bring G.I. Joe back into some relevance. Who can forget the two G.I. Joe movies starring Channing Tatum and Dwayne Johnson. In fact, there is a third G.I. Joe live-action movie expected next year. The last major G.I. Joe video game release was in 2009 with G.I. Joe The Rise of Cobra, which was a tie in to the movie of the same name.

Source: Press Release

Tears of Avia release date has been confirmed for September, new gameplay footage released

PQube and CooCooSqueaky have confirmed that the turn based RPG Tears of Avia will be released on September 24th for PC and Xbox One. The game was going to have a summer release originally but has been pushed back into the autumn. Alongside the announcement of the Tears of Avia release date CooCooSqueaky released some brand new gameplay footage, eight minutes of it, and the footage explores different aspects of the game.

The story involves demons invading the world which has caused the city of Avalon to become lost and almost relegated to mythological status. However, the main character believes that Avalon is still out there and so, along with their party, they will venture through different settings including towns, dark woods, and forgotten ruins including tombs. The character's party members will have skills spread across five classes. Those classes include Ranger, Mage, Warrior, Brawler, and Priest. There are more than 100 skills for players to evolve for the characters, and moves can be combined between party members. Additionally, the story itself will be affected by the choices players make. PQube states there are no good and bad choices but each one will have an impact on the world.

Source: Press Release

Kena: Bridge of Spirits free PS5 upgrade confirmed

Ember Lab has announced that players who buy Kena: Bridge of Spirits on PS4 will be able to upgrade to the PS5 version for free. Ember Lab confirmed this news on Twitter. Kena: Bridge of Spirits has been confirmed to be releasing on PS4, PS5, and PC via the Epic Games Store. The tweet announcing the free upgrade can be seen below.

The description for Kena: Bridge of Spirits says:

A story-driven action adventure with a stunning visual aesthetic combining exploration with fast-paced combat. Players find and grow a team of charming spirit companions called the Rot, enhancing their abilities and creating new ways to manipulate the environment. Kena: Bridge of Spirits seamlessly blends action and narrative into an unforgettable experience. Travel with Kena, a young Spirit Guide on a quest to uncover the mysterious story surrounding the demise of the village.

This move sees Ember Lab join other companies that will be supporting free cross generation upgrades, including CD Projekt RED with Cyberpunk 2077, and EA with both FIFA 21 and Madden NFL 21. However, not all publishers are supporting the free upgrade path but are instead charging for the option. 2K has confirmed that the only way to get both the current gen and next gen versions of the NBA 2K21 players will have to buy the Black Mamba edition of the game. Meanwhile, Remedy's Control will also not have a free upgrade path. Instead, the upgrade is only available to those who buy Control: Ultimate Edition.

Source: Twitter

Death end re;Quest 2 Review

A lot of the games that come out of Compile Heart and Idea Factory can best be described as JRPG comfort food. From the campy adventures of Hyperdimension Neptunia to the trope-filled fantasy of Fairy Fencer F or Dragon Star Varnir, Compile Heart know how to deliver enjoyable, if unsurprising, video game experiences.

They aren't afraid to shake things up though, and that much was made clear with the 2018 release of Death end re;Quest. A morbid, gruesome RPG that told the twin stories of a corrupted MMO game world and a crumbling real-life game-studio in the midst of scandal and subterfuge. Rather than follow up on the setting and story of that game for a sequel, Compile Heart and Idea Factory once again crafted an entirely original and unexpected story for Death end re;Quest 2 that essentially results in a full-on horror RPG.

For as much bloodshed and mutilation as there was in the first Death end re;Quest, it wasn't exactly a scary game. It also wasn't an entirely shocking venue for a video game story, because as refreshing and intriguing as the characters and plot developments were, it was still a game about yet another amnesiac protagonist sucked into yet another virtual MMO reality. The sequel immediately establishes the most unique setting I've ever experienced in a JRPG. You play as Mai Toyama, a girl who is left orphaned after her abusive father dies by her own hand. A social worker helps her move into Wordsworth Women's Dormitory in the quiet town of Le Choara, but Mai doesn't want to go there for a second chance at a peaceful life – she's in pursuit of her younger sister, Sanae, who abruptly stopped texting her and went missing just over a year ago.

Elements of the world and setting of Death end re;Quest 2 mirror plenty of other iconic Japanese horror games, from indie gems like Umineko to iconic adventures like Resident Evil 4. None of these games are dungeon-crawling, party-managing RPGs though, and seeing this sort of grim, unsavoury story serve as the backdrop for a game like this is incredibly refreshing.

There are layers of mystery to unfold and question surrounding the town of Le Choara, the practices of Wordsworth, and the mysterious religion of El Strain that ties it all together. What makes this mystery even more exciting is how disconnected, yet seemingly still influenced by the first game it all is. Despite being a brand new setting with a brand new protagonist, you're still finding glitchy visual oddities around town when you explore, and the protagonist of the first game, Shina Ninomiya, is working as a new maid at Wordsworth. It isn't clear at all how all of these elements fit together during the beginning of the game, but as layers start to unfold and plot elements reveal themselves, it comes together magnificently.

You'll unravel these mysterious through daytime conversations and night-time exploration. During the day, you navigate a menu that lets you pick from some of the 20 different students at Wordsworth to strike up a conversation with. Once those events are done with and you end the day, a big story scene ends up causing you to sneak out of the dorm and head into the 3D and fully explorable town of Le Choara.

Each of your characters has a special ability they can use to help in navigating these dungeons, from Rottie being able to float over barriers or onto floating platforms, to Mai's ability to hack nearby computers in order to control security cameras and reveal hidden paths. Awkwardly, the mini-map in the top left of your screen already shows you these "hidden" pathways, making the PCs pretty useless.

Rather than diving into a handful of different dungeons throughout the game, Le Choara acts as one large, interconnected hub of explorable environments full of treasures, plot beats, and gruesome enemies. For as gorgeous as the portrait illustrations and menu designs of the game are, the 3D modeling in Death end re;Quest 2 is relatively basic. Still, the lack of technical quality is made up for with the unique design work that goes into the decrepit and corrupted environments, as well as the genuinely disturbing and twisted enemy designs.

Death end re;Quest 2 doesn't rely on pure shock value and over-the-top gore like the previous game did, but instead delivers a constant stream of disturbing, tense, and atmospheric imagery and story beats that are a far cry from what the studio usually delivers.

Of course, you'll need to get over the dramatic story and tense atmosphere and start battling some baddies. For me this is where some of the most enjoyment in the original game came from. Combat encounters in Death end re;Quest are similar to the Neptunia series in which your characters can freely move around an enclosed battlefield and line up their attacks to get as many enemies within the area of effect as possible. Death end re;Quest put a spin on that by having your enemies get knocked back by your attacks, pin-balling into each other and the borders of the arena for extra damage. Death end re;Quest 2 amplifies this with Super Knockbacks, which let you time a button press to send foes flying even further.

The standard ebb and flow of RPG combat combines with the knockback system beautifully, but I was thrown for a loop by the insane difficulty swings of the game. In the first few chapters, enemies are child's play and can often be wiped out in a single turn. At a certain point the tables turn. Now boss battles become teeth-clenching encounters where your foe can eliminate party members in a single hit, and later on every enemy in the game is able to do this. I appreciate the option to engage in punishingly difficult gameplay like that, but when the game flip-flops from easy-peasy to lemons getting squeezied into a paper cut, regardless of your difficulty setting, it's mostly a pain.

There was a similarly cruel punishment in the original game, with dialogue options and certain gameplay moments that could lead to you and your party dying excruciating deaths before a Game Over popped up, forcing you to reload your last save and potentially lose oodles of progress. Death end re;Quest 2 rectifies this, so that the frequent Game Over screens that you encounter will give you the option to reload right at the choice or event that triggered said ending. There's even an Episode Chart that rewards you for exploring these branching story paths and Game Over events with money and unique items, although the fact that you aren't able to dive into previous episodes to unlock these items and can only be rewarded for what you've already done is a bit of a bummer.

Giveaway – Win a code for WST Snooker

Snooker fans of the world, here's a chance to get your hands on the latest WST video game from Lab42 and Sumo Digital. See below for the entry form.

Available now via the App Store and Google Play, here's a breakdown of this year's WST Snooker:

Featuring the world's top 128 players, including Ronnie O'Sullivan, Mark Selby, Judd Trump and Ding Junhui, as well as official tournaments and international venues, WST Snooker brings the genuine snooker experience to mobile devices.

Players can feel the drama of the World Snooker Tour as they compete in all 25 snooker tournaments around the globe – from the China Open at Beijing's Olympic Gymnasium, to the pinnacle, the World Snooker Championship at Sheffield's renowned Crucible Theatre.

WST Snooker also features TV-quality commentary and presentation, trick shot and skill challenge modes, online and offline multiplayer, fully customisable matches of snooker, 6-red and Shoot Out, an extensive reward system, true-to-life physics and the most advanced cue sports AI ever devised.

Win a code for WST Snooker on Mobile

10 lucky winners can bag themselves a copy of the game. Simply complete the form above – entries close at midnight on Monday 17th August. The giveaway is open to anyone, however winners must respond within three working days of being contacted, and if they do not another winner will be drawn. Our usual terms and conditions apply, and decisions are final.

Good luck!

What We Played #463 – UFC 4, Fall Guys & Mortal Shell

Since we're British we'll grudgingly admit it's been "a little warm", when what we mean is "my eyeballs are melting out of my face". Still, with the giant fan out in the living room, it's possible to just about play some games. I cooled myself down by playing the Alto Collection, though Adventure's snowy mountains soon gave way to Odyssey's sand dunes, and I was right back to square one. Besides that I've started on No Straight Roads for review, and watched the excruciating progress of Microsoft Flight Sims download bar as it taunts me with not being finished.

We're also talking about what we're watching at the moment, and I finally watched Birds of Prey, which was pretty good, sank some more time into BNA from Trigger and having finished the entirety of 30 Rock, we started Life on Mars again, which is just about as perfect as TV gets.

Nic B has just moved house and is still without internet, which means that he's watching a load of Married at First Sight Australia with his partner. In return, she's playing through The Last of Us for the first time, with Nic saying "It's a great game, even the fourth time around." I should probably play it someday, shouldn't I?

Ade has been on with Days Gone, telling us "It's decent enough but surprisingly half-finished feeling for a Sony exclusive. Those frame rate drops are nasty". He also devoured Peaky Blinders Mastermind for an upcoming review. On to the viewing side he's been partaking in superhero shenanigans, "I finally watched Spider-Man Far From Home last night. Really enjoyed it! That was a fun film with a frankly jaw-dropping illusion sequence. Don't ask me how but I'd managed to avoid any spoilers, so those end credit scenes were quite the shocker!"

Thomas Harrison-Lord has been playing Fast & Furious Crossroads for review. More on that coming soon! He also watched a film featuring Nicolas Cage called 'Color out of Space' saying "holy cow, was is it weird. If you like the sound of demonic alien-infected alpacas, this is the film for you."

Jason has been playing Mortal Shell, Rogue Legacy 2, and a couple of other things he can't give any thoughts on. Yet. He's also been playing the full release of Risk of Rain 2, "which is excellent, but I still find myself itching for new content in it."

Gareth has played Rage 2 quite a bit. "The combat is great but it doesn't fit into the open world, it feels like you get interrupted just as you're getting going. I also played 30 minutes of Beat Saber, which I regretted due to the temperature, and some Dreams VR. And I've been rewatching 30 Rock!"

Tuffcub played Destiny 2 because that is simply the way things are, and is watching Umbrella Academy "which is very slow". Jim meanwhile strapped on some sandals this week for his review of Total War Saga: Troy. "It's a dense and rewarding strategy sequel though one you have to really pour yourself into. Compared to previous Total War games where I've traditionally focused on conquest through grand battles, with Troy I've been taking a more strategic approach on a higher difficulty setting, really getting to grips with the web of mechanics underlying just about every fibre. I also fired up Dauntless following its recent content update. It continues to sink its hooks in and although I'm a Monster Hunter fan through and through, the more quick and casual Dauntless has become my go-to multiplayer action RPG."

Aran has been playing UFC 4 for review. Full thoughts on that next week. He also watched Bad Boys For Life "which was alright. Not quite up there with the original and it feels like they might start taking the franchise the Fast and Furious route."

Steve has been immersed in Ni No Kuni II this week, which is apparently pretty all-consuming. He tells us "so many different parts to manage and lots of distractions from the main story path. Aside from that I played through the underwhelming Skully for review, got in some good Overcooked time with my 8 year old and spent a couple of evenings looking at some demos and prologues on Steam. Watching wise, balancing weekly Doom Patrol episodes with an every evening spot of Umbrella Academy which my 13 year old is loving. Topping that all off with late night episodes of United States of Tara whilst melting in the heat. Is it Autumn yet?"

Miguel has been dipping a bit into FF14 again, and also been playing a bunch of Death end re;Quest 2, Yakuza Kiwami 2 and Shin Megami Tensei Digital Devil Saga. As for shows, he's been watching more Kaiji, "which continues to be one of the most stressful and nerve-wracking series I've ever watched. I'm also keeping up with currently airing stuff like Re:Zero, Deca-Dence, and Uzaki-Chan."

Finally, Tef has been too hot for any gaming aside from a couple rounds of Fall Guys each day, picking up a handful of more wins in the process, and finished off watching Snowpiercer, which has been enjoyably dumb.

Now it's over to you. What haveyou been playing and watching this past week?