The Xbox One X jumps up 1,368 places on the Amazon sales charts

I'm not saying that naming your new console almost identically to your old one is a bad move but there may be just one or two disappointed faces around the Christmas tree come this December. Today, on the launch of pre-orders for the Xbox Series X, Microsoft's old console, the Xbox One X, has jumped as massive 1,368 places up Amazon's 'Movers and Shakers' charts, and at full price as well.

The 431% increase in sales could be attributed to a sudden interest overall in the Xbox brand or.. well, that's about the only thing I can think of other than people have just bought the wrong console. It's a very odd time to be buying a soon to be obsolete console at top dollar, especially when the more powerful Xbox Series S is $255 cheaper.

The 1TB Xbox Series X is at number eight in Amazon's charts and also has an entry at number 15, where the console is packaged with a controller. Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Cyberpunk 2077, and Watch Dogs Legion, all on Xbox One, have also seen huge sales boosts but as they all come with free Xbox Series X upgrades that appears to make sense.

There are another anomalies, a Switch controller has had a 4,385% increase for no apparent reason, it's not on sale but maybe there was an new advertising campaign. Anyway, if you have just bought an Xbox from Amazon maybe check you got the right one, just in case.

You can't blame consumers for getting the wrong console, Microsoft themselves are also having trouble.

If you have not ordered your new console yet here in the UK then be weary of extra charges. Anyone who ordered a PS5 last week from GAME will not be charged, but anyone who ordered an Xbox Series X|S today will get the £10 on top. Any future orders of PS5s, Xbox Series X|S, or Oculus Quest 2 from GAME will have that charge too. Eurogamer has been trying to get a comment from GAME, but the company has yet to offer any answers as to why this charge is being levied when other retailers are offering free delivery on all pre-orders for the next generation of consoles.

According to Eurogamer's sources the decision for the delivery fee has come from GAME's parent company Fraser Group, though that is yet to be confirmed. Currently, retailers are waiting for more PS5 pre-orders and Sony apologised for how the pre-orders were handled. Today, Xbox Series X|S pre-orders went live and you can see the current state of availability of Microsoft's console in the UK and North America.

Source: Amazon via Twitter

Remothered: Broken Porcelain release date brought forward

Modus Games has announced a release date for change for the upcoming horror title Remothered: Broken Porcelain, and this is not a delay. Instead, Modus has confirmed that the release date for Remothered: Broken Porcelain has been moved forward instead of pushed back, and the new release date is October 13th. The reason for the move according to Modus is the fact that October is a stacked with releases, so wanted to move slightly away from the packed window.

Shane Bierwith, EVP of global marketing at Modus, said:

"This is an incredibly busy month for games, particularly horror games. While moving dates forward isn't common, we'd like to allow horror fans to get their hands on Broken Porcelain early so players can have more time to experience all the great games releasing around Halloween."

Remothered: Broken Porcelain had been delayed before with the original August release date pushed back to October 20th. The game sees the return of Rosemary Reed, the protagonist of Remothered: Tormented Fathers, as she looks to continue the story in the search for Celeste. There is also a new protagonist called Jennifer who is trying to find her way out from the horrifying Ashmann Inn. In our preview of Remothered: Broken Porcelain, Steve wrote:

As a taster for the full game, this preview worked really well. It is clear that Stormind Games have listened to fans and critics in refining the central mechanics, and the initial hints at the storyline certainly have me intrigued. I hope that the object interaction and QTEs are tightened up in the full release, but am looking forward to spending some dark autumn evenings exploring the horrors of The Ashmann Inn and whatever other locations the game includes.

You can read the full Remothered: Broken Porcelain preview here. The game is to be released on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC for £24.99/€29.99 and Nintendo Switch for £29.99/€34.99.

Source: Press Release

GAME begins charging £10 delivery for PS5 and Xbox Series X|S pre-orders

Lots and lots of people have been, or attempting to, order next generation consoles. Be it the PS5 disc or digital version, the Xbox Series X, or the Xbox Series S, there has been plenty of interest. Various retailers have been selling out of consoles as people look for stock and get a confirmed order. Some of those who have pre-ordered would have gone to the UK's most well known gaming retailer GAME in search of stock. What was not expected was for GAME to start charging a £9.99 delivery charge on next gen console pre-orders.

Anyone who ordered a PS5 last week from GAME will not be charged, but anyone who ordered an Xbox Series X|S today will get the £10 on top. Any future orders of PS5s, Xbox Series X|S, or Oculus Quest 2 from GAME will have that charge too. Eurogamer has been trying to get a comment from GAME, but the company has yet to offer any answers as to why this charge is being levied when other retailers are offering free delivery on all pre-orders for the next generation of consoles.

According to Eurogamer's sources the decision for the delivery fee has come from GAME's parent company Fraser Group, though that is yet to be confirmed. Currently, retailers are waiting for more PS5 pre-orders and Sony apologised for how the pre-orders were handled. Today, Xbox Series X|S pre-orders went live and you can see the current state of availability of Microsoft's console in the UK and North America.

Source: Eurogamer

The Elder Scrolls Online won't leave PS4 after Bethesda Microsoft deal

Developer ZeniMax Online Studios have announced that The Elder Scrolls Online will not be dropping support for PlayStation 4 following this week's news that parent company, ZeniMax Media, has been acquired by Microsoft.

It's a huge get for the Xbox brand and one sorely needed as Microsoft and Sony lock horns yet again with the impending launch of the Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5, the latter seeming like the more popular option among most.

However, with Microsoft having snapped up ZeniMax – and therefore, Bethesda – this has left many questioning what will become of future and existing titles published by the company, including The Elder Scrolls Online.

Well, according to ZeniMax Online Studios, support for the PlayStation 4 version of their ever-expanding MMO, as well as the newly launched Google Stadia version, will not cease as a result of the surprise buyout. Here's an official statement from Studio Director, Matt Firor:

By now I am sure that most of you have heard the exciting news: Zenimax Media (the parent company of Zenimax Online Studios) has signed a deal to be acquired by Microsoft, including Bethesda Softworks and all of its studios, including ZOS. I want to take this moment to reassure the entire Elder Scrolls Online community that ESO will continue to be supported exactly as it was, and we fully expect it to keep growing and thriving on each of the platforms that are currently supported. We are very with news, and can't wait to see how the two companies working together can make ESO even better for everyone.

I definitely want to thank you, the dedicated community that makes Elder Scrolls Online the huge phenomenon that it is today – we created the world, but it is you all: the fans and community of the game that give it life. Thank you so much for being part of the success story of ZOS and ESO – and rest assured in the knowledge that we are focused on supporting you for many more years to come.

While ESO will remain unaffected, it's likely that the Microsoft deal will mean future projects from Bethesda studios will be exclusive to Xbox platforms or Game Pass.

The Elder Scrolls Online recently launched its latest expansion, Greymoor, earlier this year.

Source: Twitter (@TESOnline)

For Honor – how to play against bots

Whether you're returning to For Honor after a long break or have only just purchased a copy of Ubisoft's fighting game, queuing for that first match can be daunting. Although For Honor attempts to match you with other players of a similar skill rating, there's always a chance you'll get pitted against someone waiting to eviscerate you.

In truth, that's the best way to learn or relearn how this unique duelling game works though you might want to cut your teeth by playing against some bots first. There are a few ways to do this – not all of them are clear, and one method requires the Marching Fire expansion.

With For Honor Year 4 Season 3 having just gone live, here's how to get some practice in against those CPUs!


The first place you should go if you're looking to hone your fighting skills is the training section of the main menu. Since launch, Ubisoft have greatly improved the learning tools and tutorials in For Honor with a straight up practice arena as well as the "Hero Tactics" mode which gives you a crash course on any selected hero.


The story-driven campaign is an often overlooked chunk of the core For Honor package. Due to how the combat is designed, it's not exactly a great fit for these longer missions in which you fight a mix of grunts, leaders, and boss characters.

Is For Honor still worth playing in 2020?

Still, there's some value to playing the campaign. After every few missions it cycles in a new hero for you to try, each with their own movesets and playstyles. This mode will also familiarise you with the game's setting and lore.


In For Honor you can play against bots in any of the multiplayer game modes. This is a great opportunity to learn the flow of team-based matches such as Tribute, Dominion, and Breach, without the pressure of going up against real life opponents.

When selecting a game type, you have the option to toggle between the "Player vs. Player" and "Player vs. AI" matchmaking queues. You may not want to play with any other human players at all and there's a hidden way of doing this. Switching to "Player vs. AI" then tap Square/X to pop open a parameters menu where you can disable matchmaking. Viola!


For those who have purchased the For Honor complete edition or Marching Fire expansion, there's another great way of testing your might against bots. Either solo or with a friend you can enter the Arcade gauntlet.

This clever extension to the core game presents you with a small series of back-to-back battles. These fights are constantly changing with new opponents and match conditions each time to keep Arcade feeling fresh. You'll go up against solo enemies, pairs, and trios, with buffs and debuffs (such as bleed effect, unblockable attacks etc.) adding a little twist to each encounter.

As you can see, there are plenty of options when it comes to getting some practice in against AI fighters. Once you've built a mass grave of bots then it's time to cross swords with For Honor players across the world.

Quantum Error no longer a PlayStation exclusive, now coming to Xbox consoles

In March, TeamKill Media revealed the first person horror title Quantum Error for PS5 and PS4. Since that announcement there have been trailers showing the type of horror one could expect in the game. Now, TeamKill Media has announced that Quantum Error will no longer be a PlayStation exclusive, and that it will be released for Xbox Series X|S, The developer confirmed in a tweet and why the decision was made to go multiplatform.

As you can see from the Tweets the decision was made following showcases of Quantum Error at gamescom and the Future Games Show, where interest was gauged to be high enough to bring the horror title to the Xbox consoles. The story description is as follows:

When the Monad Quantum Research Facility – 30 miles off the shore of CA – is attacked by an unknown entity, engulfing the complex in flames and putting it into a full containment lock-down, a distress call is sent for mutual aid to the Garboa Fire Dept in San Francisco, CA. Fire Chief Sturgis answers the call and sends you – Capt. Jacob Thomas – your partner Shane Costa and a crew by helicopter to the Monad Facility. Your mission is simple: save as many lives from the burning complex as possible and get out.  However, what starts as a rescue mission quickly plummets into darkness, when you arrive and find that things are not as they appear.

A release date for Quantum Error has yet to be confirmed.

Source: Twitter

A short Bithell announces A Bithell Short: The Solitaire Conspiracy

The below average height* indie game darling, Mike Bithell, has announced the latest game in his Bithell Shorts series.

"As longtime players of our nonsense will know, we tend to mix things up between our larger projects with 'Shorts', more experimental games that explore side ideas or genres that we don't get to play with in the likes of Volume or John Wick," said Mike on Twitter.

"So… what if Solitaire, but extra, with powers and a full FMV storied campaign, time attack and skirmish modes!" he adds, describing his new game, The Solitaire Conspiracy.

The game finds you playing as Jim Ratio (Greg Miller), one of the surviving members of Protego, the world's leading spy agency, which has recently been destroyed. By playing a tactical version of Solitaire and utilise the special powers each crew has you must reform the agency,

Once you've taken back control of Protego you can play two extra modes, Skirmish which is an infinite mode, or Countdown, "a survival mode that will test your grasp of the game's surprising tactical depths."

Here are those ever so important key features.

Key Features:

  • Three modes make this the biggest Bithell Short yet! Campaign tells a tightly packed story and introduces the game's mechanics. Countdown tests your endurance with wave after wave of unique decks, and Skirmish gives you an infinite playground to enjoy unlocked crews.
  • Beautiful original character artwork and atmospheric design put you at the heart of your own cyberpunk conspiracy.
  • No heightened game of Solitaire would be complete without full FMV cutscenes, featuring Greg Miller and Inel Tomlinson in an original story from the team behind Thomas Was Alone, Volume, Subsurface Circular and John Wick Hex.
  • The soundtrack for your adventures is provided by Jon Everist (Battletech, Shadowrun: Hong Kong, Shadowrun: Dragonfall).

The game is only scheduled for Steam and the Epic Games Store at the moment but when asked if it could come to other platforms Mike said "bluntly and honestly, it depends on how it does here."

The Solitaire Conspiracy. launches on 6th October, you can Steam Wish List it here or do the same on the Epic Games Store.

Source: Twitter / Steam

*Writers opinion based on the one time he ran in to Mike at a PlayStation event and gushed about Thomas Was Alone. Please note writer is 6'5″ and therefore everyone is short to him. 

The Cyberpunk 2077 campaign will be shorter than The Witcher 3's as many "never made it to the end"

The Witcher III: Wild Hunt is an excellent game but it's damn long, and according to CD Projekt Red many people got far in to the fifty hour campaign but never finished it. As a result of this the main campaign for Cyberpunk 2077 is "slightly shorter".

During the recent Cyberpunk 2077 Night City Wire the senior quest designer on the game, Patrick K. Mills, said the following.

"The difference between a completionist run and a main story run… we do know that the main story run in Cyberpunk 2077 is slightly shorter than The Witcher 3 because we got a lot of complaints about Witcher 3's main story just being too long."

"Looking at the metrics, you see tremendous numbers of people played through that game really far, but never made it to the end. We want you to see the full story, so we did shorten the main story, but we have lots to do, and in terms of a completionist campaign, I just don't have that number," he added.

As CD Projekt Red close in on the release of Cyberpunk 2077, they've reached a point at which they can share the minimum and recommended specs you'll need to play the game on PC. Luckily, with the game targeting current gen consoles, they're really quite low, but if you want all the finery that the game can produce in gameplay videos, you'll need to be going way beyond even the recommended specs – you won't get ray tracing on a GTX 1060!

Minimum Specs Recommended Specs
OS 64-bit Windows 7 or 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit windows 10
CPU Intel Core i5-3570k or AMD FX 8310 Intel Core i7-4790 or AMD Ryzen 3 3200G
GPU Nvidia GTX 780 3GB or AMD Radeon RX 470 Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB or AMD R9 Fury
Storage 70GB 70GB SSD


Cyberpunk 2077 is out for Xbox One, PS4 and PC on 19th November. It will be playable on Xbox Series X | S at that point – the consoles coming out on 10th November – and on PlayStation 5 on November 11th/19th, but next-gen enhancements will not be there on day one. The game could take some advantages next-gen beyond simple backward compatibility, but for ray tracing and other more integral enhancements, we'll have to wait.

Source ResetEra via IGN

Destiny 2: Beyond Light has a new trailer, the secrets of Europa await

The final countdown to Europa (aha!) has begun and Guardians across the globe are sat watching the countdown timer on the Season Pass page of Destiny 2, quietly muttering "Oh god we've still got seven weeks to go and there's nothing to do".

To pass at least 1minute 48 seconds of that wait Bungie have released a new trailer for Beyond Light, the next expansion to the game. "Beyond the surface of this frozen wasteland lies the secret that can win our fight. Are you bold enough to dive deep into Europa's dark history to uncover the truth?" they ask.

The trailer begins with a voiceover which sounds suspiciously like the Servitor from the Prison of Elders but without the glitches. We then get to see the various races from the game on the planet including the Fallen and the Vex, and some large cityscapes in the background. At 52 seconds in there's a quick shot of what appears to be some sort of experimentation chamber with a figure from an unknown race and some sort of Vex, is the Darkness looking for something? Perhaps a thing called love? OK, OK, I'll stop the pop puns, shush.

There's also shots of the new  Stasis powers and – huzzah – tanks are back! We also get a quick look at  a boss that seems to be an upgraded version of the metal beast from the end of the Scourge of the Past raid.

Stasis is a new element to go along Arc, Solar, and Void and brings new subclasses to each of the three Guardian types.

  • Warlocks become Shadebinders, harnessing the power of Darkness to bend the battle to their will.
  • Hunters become Revenants, striking hard and striking fast.
  • Titans become Behemoths, controlling the fight by controlling the ground.

Bungie's blurb about Stasis is as follows:

A new power is born out of the ancient Pyramid ship above Europa's frozen frontier, and a dark empire has risen beneath, united under the banner of the Fallen Kell of Darkness, Eramis. Join your fellow Guardians and bring down the empire at any cost – even if it means wielding the Darkness itself.

As the new threat emerges, so too does a mysterious new power – Stasis. Rooted in Darkness, Guardians will wield this new elemental power alongside Arc, Solar, and Void to dominate the battlefield. Titans, Warlocks, and Hunters each use Stasis in a different way, from slowing down foes with Stasis fields to encasing and shattering enemies with destructive might.

Bungie has just confirmed that it will be releasing Destiny 2 on PS5 and Xbox Series X. The news came via a Tweet the company posted in reply to the official Xbox account which had listed the developers that would be creating games for the Xbox Series X. They confirmed the game will run in 4K and 60fps on the PS5 and Xbox Series X, and that all content you already own will be available for you on the new platforms, you won't need to buy it again. There will also be cross-generation play, so PS4 players can play against those on PS5.

Bungie have also revealed the next two expansions for the game, The Witch Queen for 2021, and Lightfall for 2022.

Source: YouTube

Xbox Series X|S pre-orders US & Canada – Still available at Best Buy, but Series X stock running very low

It's time of Microsoft to kick off their pre-orders for the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Pre-orders are going live today at 8AM local time, which in the US means 8AM PT and 11AM ET, and we've got a set of handy links to retailers below.

Update: Retailers have gone live, but it's tough going. The best bet is Best Buy in US and Canada, but periodically check the Microsoft Store as well. Scroll down to see all the options. Last update at 9:45AM PT.

The Xbox Series X will be priced at $499.99 USD / $599.99 CAD, while the lower-powered Xbox Series S comes in at $299.99 USD / $379.99 CAD. Alternatively, there is All Access 24-month payment plan available at select retailers. Both consoles will be launching globally on 10th November, marking the start of the next generation.

Xbox Series X | S pre-orders from 8AM PT / 11AM ET

Xbox Series X pre-orders (US)

Xbox Series X pre-orders (Canada)

Xbox Series S pre-orders (US)

Xbox Series S pre-orders (Canada)

Notes: Where no direct product page is available, we've linked to a relevant search or category page. GameStop's website is offline at the time of writing.

Additionally, Microsoft, Best Buy, GameStop and Walmart will be selling the console under the All Access payment plan in the UK. This spreads out the cost to be $24.99 per month for Series S, and $34.99 per month for Series X. This also bundles in an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription, which will soon include EA Play games and benefits.

Elsewhere in the world, the console will be available, or already is available at the following locations.

  • UK (8AM BST): Microsoft Store, GAME, Amazon, Dixons, Currys PC World, Argos, John Lewis, Smyths Toys, VERY, AO, Tesco, Simply Games, ShopTo and other participating retailers
  • Canada (8AM PT): Microsoft Store, Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, EB Games, The Source, and other participating retailers
  • Australia (8AM AEST): Microsoft Store, JB Hifi, EB Games, Telstra, Harvey Norman, and other participating retailers
  • New Zealand (8AM NZST): Microsoft Store, JB HiFi, EB Games, Spark, and other participating retailers
  • Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (9AM CEST) at Microsoft Store, Amazon, MediaMarkt, GameStop, FNAC, Elkjøp/Elgiganten, and other participating retailers. These will differ from country to country.

Yesterday, Microsoft stunned the gaming world by announcing they are buying Bethesda and its catalogue of beloved studios and game franchises. Bethesda will continue to publish game independently, and existing exclusivity deals and partnerships will remain, but there's a very real possibility that the next Elder Scrolls game, Wolfenstein, Starfield, and more could become Xbox Series X|S console exclusives. At the very least, all Bethesda games will now be added to Xbox Game Pass.

Xbox Game Pass now has over 15 million subscribers

Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass is growing rapidly, with the company announcing that the game subscription service now has 15 million subscribers. That's up from the 10 million subscriber milestone they passed back in April.

The news was tucked away in yesterday's breaking news that Microsoft are buying Bethesda and all its studios and game properties for $7.5 billion. This will naturally see all of Bethesda's games now added to Xbox Game Pass, and future titles added to Game Pass on the day of their release, as with Microsoft's other first party titles.

That's yet another feather in Microsoft's cap, after announcing that EA Play would be rolled in Game Pass later this year, around the launch of the next-generation of console, and the introduction of game streaming to Android devices at no extra cost.

However, even with millions of subscribers, Microsoft have admitted that Game Pass is not a particularly profitable venture at the moment. Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg said back in July that it's "not a big profit play" in the short term, but that they're hoping to foster customer loyalty and spread through word of mouth.

The service clearly targets the same kind of instant appeal that video streaming services Netflix and Amazon Prime have, offering over 150 games across several generations of game console. However, Microsoft have been aggressively pushing the service, offering a first month trial for $1/£1, and letting these trials convert existing Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass subscriptions up to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Frugal gamers could have come out well ahead in this equation.

Xbox Game Pass is available across Xbox One, PC and Android, and will also play a major role in the next generation with Xbox Series X | S. The Xbox Series S is a lower-powered and cheaper console priced at £249/$299, but it comes without a disc drive, meaning that much of the appeal comes from it granting access to Xbox Game Pass library. Even with the Series X, the price of Xbox Game Pass is becoming more and more appealing as Sony, Activision, 2K Games and others look to increase the standard price of their games from $60 to $70.

Still, given Sony's ability to continually break their own records for exclusive game sales and new IPs, it's pretty clear why Jim Ryan thinks Game Pass doesn't make sense for them.

Source: Microsoft

No FIFA 21 demo before release, EA confirms

FIFA 21 won't have a playable demo ahead of its October launch publisher EA have confirmed to footie fans.

Those players look to get some early hands on time with this year's FIFA are out of luck it seems. Considering that most previous entries in the power-selling football franchise have had downloadable demos available for multiple platforms, the lack of one this year comes as a disappointment.

EA Sports issued the following statement, confirming that there will be no FIFA 21 demo:

We aren't releasing a demo for FIFA 21. Instead we've made the decision to focus our development team's time on delivering the best full game experience for current & next-gen consoles. We look forward to EA PLAY members jumping in 10 days from now and launching the game Oct 9.

Of course, there will be cynics out there claiming that EA have deliberately held off on releasing a FIFA 21 demo in order to drive up EA PLAY subscriptions. Up until its recent name change from EA Access, EA PLAY is the publisher's premium service which offers an instant library of games as well as discounts and early access trials among other benefits. Available on Xbox, PlayStation, and PC (via Steam) the service is priced at £3.99 a month or £19.99 annually.

Whether or not EA will launch a FIFA 21 demo further down the line remains unclear though hopefully they will.

FIFA 21 will be out for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on October 9th, with free upgrades to PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X via EA's homegrown Dual Entitlement scheme. This will allow free upgrades to take place from the launch of the next-gen consoles up until the release of FIFA 22 next year.

In other FIFA 21 news, here we have the game's full PlayStation 4 trophy list – how tough do you think this year's virtual cabinet of silverware compares to previous years?

Source: Twitter (@EASPORTSFIFA)

Monster Hunter Rise Amiibo will launch next year

Monster Hunter Rise will be launching next year on the Nintendo Switch and with it comes a new cluster of toys to life figures for fans to get their hands on.

Revealed during last week's Nintendo Direct Mini showcase alongside Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin, Monster Hunter Rise is a new entry in the core series, steering away from the massively popular Monster Hunter: World.

Monster Hunter Rise – 7 things you need to know

Monster Hunter Rise has been confirmed as a Nintendo Switch exclusive title alongside Stories 2. As such, Capcom and Nintendo will be launching new amiibo figures alongside the game which can be used to unlocked certain bonuses.

As shown in the below tweet from Nintendo of Europe, there will be at least 3 Monster Hunter Rise amiibo coming next year including the Palamute, Magnamalo, and Palico.

The Palamute is a new canine companion who will ride out on excursions with hunters, allowing them to travel much faster while also adopting an offensive role in combat. Of course, you can also take a Palico with you though these cat-like creatures are more of a traditional support option as they have been in past Monster Hunter games. Meanwhile the Magnamalo will be Capcom's flagship beastie for Monster Hunter Rise.

In terms of where to buy these new amiibo, they will be sold exclusively via the MyNintendo Store for EU gamers, and at GameStop for those in the United States.

Pricing info discovered by amiibo Alerts reveals that the Magnamalo figure will be slightly more expensive than the other two. It's reasonable to assume this is because the figure will be bigger than both the Palamute and Palico though we have yet to hear confirmation via Nintendo or Capcom.

Monster Hunter Rise will launch on Nintendo Switch next year on March 26th, 2021. For more on Rise, we've put together a handy list of 7 things you need to know about the game right now.

Source: Twitter (via DualShockers)

FitXR Review

In a world where we work from home, meet friends on Zoom, and where even your mum has an actual mobile phone with a working phone number, it's clear that the human experience is changing and evolving before our eyes through connectivity and technology.

Generally speaking, all this tech use (and your office suddenly being twelve steps from your bed) is not ideal for your health, but wait! Technology is here set right what it has done wrong! Let me introduce you to FitXR; a virtual reality fitness class that will sit on your head and tell you what to do. It's a bit like a buff, gym-obsessed sorting hat.

FitXR's younger sibling, BoxVR, did a very good job of making you sweat into the expensive piece of tech you're wearing by punching at thin air. FitXR – a free upgrade is available for BoxVR owners – wants you to carry on doing that, just with other people able to see it. In their desire to get the oxygen flowing around your body even faster, the folks over at eponymous studio FitXR have decided that the spirit of competition is what pushes you to the limit of human stamina. Having experienced it for myself, I really think it's true.

You'll begin by filling in your membership form in the voluminous entranceway of a decidedly swish virtual gym, selecting your gender, weight and age, before it starts trying to shuffle you off into your first class. Here you'll learn about the correct stance and the different types of punches and obstacles that are going to be heading your way at an increasingly worrying rate.

The overarching method of getting your heartrate up is unchanged from BoxVR. It will put you in either left or right stance, and you'll find different icons heading for you that you have to punch out of digital existence. The most common are straights, but there's plenty of hooks and uppercuts before you're also leaning or ducking out of the way. Oh, and you have to block as well.

So far, so BoxVR, but the experience has clearly been tightened up. The way you throw punches is less telegraphed, and it now captures the speed of those movements too, giving you the first marker to rate yourself against in an effort to spur you on to try just a little bit harder.

The presence of other people is also now key to the experience. We've known since Space Invaders that chasing a spot on a leaderboard is a heady thrill, and FitXR builds that into the experience with a massive leaderboard just in front of you. A quick glance will let you know where you are, and if you're not at the top you're going to throw those punches like a desperate Rocky Balboa. If you are at the top, then you'll probably try even harder being the Apollo Creed of this virtual contest. After all, who knows when Clubber Lang or Ivan Drago are going to show up?

If you need a touch more motivation, FitXR has an array of virtual trainers to egg you on. This is one of the weaker aspect of FitXR's fitness class schtick, with the voice samples overlaying the music tracks in a fairly amateurish style. What they're saying is fine – it's worth knowing that you've levelled up or that you're throwing punches faster – but the implementation is a little off.

There's a decent amount of content to be found as standard, with a healthy number of training sessions stretching from a modest three minutes up to a soul – and arm – destroying sixty-one. There's dance, pop and rock music options, though this is the Imagine Dragons end of the rock spectrum, so don't expect anything like Avenged Sevenfold.

There's also a daily workout to give you a clear reason to return every day, and regular workouts being added all the time. If you somehow burn through all of this, there's a storefront containing more specific sets of workouts, with the current line-up including Essentials, Extreme, Rock and Total Body Pack.

Xbox Series X|S pre-orders UK – Series X in stock at Microsoft, Series S widely available

After the chaos of last week, Microsoft are hoping that the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S pre-orders are a bit more orderly. Pre-orders will be going live today at 8AM local time, and we've got links to all participating retailers in the UK ready below.

Updates: Some sites have continued to struggle, and Xbox Series X is now out of stock, while Xbox Series S is available to pre-order almost across the board. We've got retailer updates below. Keep trying and good luck!

The Xbox Series X will be priced at $499.99 / £449.99 / €499.99, while the lower-powered Xbox Series S comes in at $299.99 / £249.99 / €299.99. Alternatively, there is All Access 24-month payment plan available at select retailers. Both consoles will be launching globally on 10th November, marking the start of the next generation.

Xbox Series X | S Pre-Orders from 8AM UK Time:

Xbox Series X available to order

Xbox Series S available to order

Upcoming Xbox Series X availability

  • – Register your interest
  • John Lewis ** – Seemingly not part of the pre-order gang just yet… (17:47pm)

Out of Stock

* Deposit required ** Payment required at time of order

Additionally, Microsoft, Game and Smyths Toys will be selling the console under the All Access payment plan in the UK. This spreads out the cost to be $24.99 / £20.99 per month for Series S, and $34.99 / £28.99 per month for Series X. This also bundles in an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription, which will soon include EA Play games and benefits.

Elsewhere in the world, the console will be available, or already is available at the following locations.

  • United States (8AM PT / 11AM ET): Microsoft Store, Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Walmart, Target, Sam's Club, Newegg, and other participating retailers
  • Canada (8AM PT): Microsoft Store, Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, EB Games, The Source, and other participating retailers
  • Australia (8AM AEST): Microsoft Store, JB Hifi, EB Games, Telstra, Harvey Norman, and other participating retailers
  • New Zealand (8AM NZST): Microsoft Store, JB HiFi, EB Games, Spark, and other participating retailers
  • Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (9AM CEST) at Microsoft Store, Amazon, MediaMarkt, GameStop, FNAC, Elkjøp/Elgiganten, and other participating retailers. These will differ from country to country.

Yesterday, Microsoft stunned the gaming world by announcing they are buying Bethesda and its catalogue of beloved studios and game franchises. Bethesda will continue to publish game independently, and existing exclusivity deals and partnerships will remain, but there's a very real possibility that the next Elder Scrolls game, Wolfenstein, Starfield, and more could become Xbox Series X|S console exclusives. At the very least, all Bethesda games will now be added to Xbox Game Pass.

Union calls for Nadeo studio director to be dismissed after allegations of workplace toxicity

The computer and video games arm of French union Solidaires has called for the dismissal Florent Castelnérac, the studio head of Ubisoft owned Nadeo. This follows allegations "of serious breaches of labor law as well as acts of moral harassment committed against people working and having worked in the company," with Castelnérac at the heart of these accusations.

This started on 24th August, when Solidaires made a call on Twitter and their website for people to come forward if they had witnessed or been victim of harassment in the workplace. This was then followed on 10th September with a report by Numerama (who were amongst the first to report on the issues at Ubisoft in June and July), detailing some of the specific allegations made against Castelnérac.

Numerama collected and published ten testimonials, both from employees at Nadeo and former employees, all of whom allege that Florent Castelnérac has bullied his subordinates at the studio, ranging from very public dressing downs to extended one-on-one "kitchen meetings", stemming from an employees unwillingness to work overtime or on weekends, to critiquing Castelnérac's ideas, or trying to leave Nadeo.

Castelnérac was asked for comment by Numerama and responded both for their report and later to the individual quotes found within. While he refutes the claims about pressuring employees to take on overtime, he acknowledges many of the specific situations described where he told one employee that they were "level 40" and he wanted them to be "level 112", or asked another "Do you think your father would be proud of you?" However, he tries to explain these as misjudged attempts to motivate that were misinterpreted, and admits that he is loud and argumentative in tone, which could very easily lead to employees feeling intimidated.

One particular situation seems very odd with a source, Antoine, particularly unnerved and fearful of retribution. Castelnérac puts this down to an awkward situation where Antoine was part of inter-studio informing. Possibly related, Castelnérac was reportedly extremely dissatisfied with Trackmania Turbo's direction, divorcing himself from the game's development after it went in a direction he did not want to take, and with the game's eventual director having a testy working relationship within the studio.

Through all of this, Nadeo has a degree of autonomy within Ubisoft with their own separate HR department and not tying in with the cross-studio hiring practices of Ubisoft as a whole. A running theme through all the allegations swirling has been the feeling that HR could not be relied upon to support employees and follow through on reports.

It's a difficult one to unpick, but is on a very different level compared to some of the other allegations made at Ubisoft. Either way, Solidaires called for his dismissal on 11th September. The timing of this should not go unnoticed, coming the day after Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot made a public video statement about recent allegations made against Ubisoft employees, dismissals and actions being taken by the company.

Source: Numerama, Solidaires

Black Ops Cold War snipers will be nerfed following PS4 alpha

Treyarch have confirmed that they will be nerfing sniper rifles following the recent Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War alpha test. This comes after feedback from players during this past weekend when PlayStation 4 gamers were able to get some early hands on time during the exclusive preview period.

The long-time Call of Duty developers haven't given any specifics, though Black Ops game designer, Tony Flame, did reveal that the sequel's spread of sniper rifles will be subject to balance changes. This could affect the time it takes to aim down sights, their handling/mobility, clip size, among other stats. Treyarch could also rework the buffs and nerfs that are granted via the many attachments available for these guns.

Here's what Flame said when addressing Black Ops Cold War alpha players:

Hopefully, we'll get sample these weapon balance changes in an upcoming beta for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. With the game due out in a couple of months' time there's still plenty for Treyarch to tweak and fine tune before unleashing the latest annual entry in Activision's power-selling series.

Black Ops Cold War featured heavily during Sony's big PlayStation 5 showcase last week. Not only did Treyarch unveil the PS4 exclusive alpha, we also got a look at the hotly anticipated shooter running on PS5. The footage was taken from Cold War's singleplayer campaign with Mason and Woods infiltrating an airbase, blending stealth and all-out action with plenty of trademark set pieces.

Call of Duty: Black Ops will launch on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC on November 13th. The PlayStation 5 version will follow shortly after on November 19th

Fans will be able to upgrade their copy of Cold War between current and next-gen systems – we've got a handy guide to explain how this works.

Source: Twitter

Microsoft is buying Bethesda – Bethesda to still publish games, but they could be Xbox Series X|S & PC exclusives

In a huge move, Microsoft have just announced that they are acquiring ZeniMax Media, the parent company of publisher Bethesda Softworks, for $7.5 billion in cash. This means that when Microsoft complete the acquisition they will own a slew of new major franchises that include Doom, Fallout, Wolfenstein, The Elder Scrolls, Starfield, Dishonored, Prey and more.

Update: In a blog post by Pete Hines of Bethesda, he has clarified that the publisher will still publish games independently of the Xbox Game Studios brand. We have amended the story below. Additionally, the deal is expected to close by the end of June 2021, which is the end of Microsoft's fiscal year.

Update 2: Speaking to Bloomberg, Phil Spencer has confirmed that existing deals will be honoured, so Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo  will still have timed exclusivity on PS5, but that future games will all be on Xbox and PC and "other consoles on a case by case basis."

The acquisition signals a vast expansion of Microsoft's game development business, as Bethesda Softworks, Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, ZeniMax Online Studios, Arkane, MachineGames, Tango Gameworks, Alpha Dog and Roundhouse Studios all join the company.

Bethesda games will be added into Xbox Game Pass over the coming months, and future releases will be added to Game Pass on day one, as with all other Xbox Game Studios titles. With the rising cost of games on next-gen, it's yet another massive draw into Microsoft's game subscription.

What's not clear is what this means for their games on other platforms. Bethesda's Pete Hines explains that Bethesda's studios "are still working on the same games we were yesterday, made by the same studios we've worked with for years, and those games will be published by us."

This will certainly mean that existing partnerships and deals will continue, so Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo will remain PlayStation 5 timed exclusives when they launch in 2021, while The Elder Scrolls Online and Fallout 76 will continue as cross-platform games. The real question is whether or not the next Elder Scrolls game, the next Doom, the next Wolfenstein or the highly anticipated Starfield will shift to being Xbox and Windows 10 exclusives.

Phil Spencer wrote in the announcement:

Bethesda's games have always had a special place on Xbox and in the hearts of millions of gamers around the world. Our teams have a close and storied history working together, from the amazing first DOOM, and its id Tech engine, innovating games on PCs to Bethesda bringing their first console game to the original Xbox, the groundbreaking The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Over the years I've had many deep conversations with the creative leaders at Bethesda on the future of gaming and we've long shared similar visions for the opportunities for creators and their games to reach more players in more ways.

Just as they took the bold first steps to bring The Elder Scrolls franchise to the original Xbox, Bethesda were early supporters of Xbox Game Pass, bringing their games to new audiences across devices and have been actively investing in new gaming technology like cloud streaming of games. We will be adding Bethesda's iconic franchises to Xbox Game Pass for console and PC. One of the things that has me most excited is seeing the roadmap with Bethesda's future games, some announced and many unannounced, to Xbox console and PC including Starfield, the highly anticipated, new space epic currently in development by Bethesda Game Studios.

Source: Xbox, Bethesda

Another retailer has listed the Mass Effect Trilogy for Switch, PS4 and Xbox One

Czech retailer HerniSvet is the latest store to list the still-doesn't-officially-exist-yet Mass Effect Trilogy remasters. Once again the game is listed for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Switch, with a release date in October, the same as the previous leaks, however a user on Reddit translated the text and it seems to indicate that multiplayer will be included which is something new. The other thing it has in common with previous leaks is that it was rather quickly deleted, but we have a screenshot.

Last week Portuguese retailer GamingReplay also listed the game, although they had different box art.

In July we found out that "Art of the Mass Effect Trilogy: Expanded Edition" will be hitting store shelves next year on March 23rd and, like previous Mass Effect art books and graphic novels, will be published by Dark Horse Comics. It seems very odd that a book based on game that hasn't been on the shelves since 2017 is being published in 2021, that is unless there's a new/old game on the way.

Then, in August GamesBeat journalist Jeff Grub who claims the remastered games may be out this October.  "Up until like this last week, I know the plan for sure was to announce it in early October, release in later in October. So good news," he said on the Gamesbeat podcast. However, he then tempered expectations by adding "Maybe bad news, it's 2020, maybe that could start to slip, it sounds like maybe that's a possibility, nothing for sure yet. I know it's real. I've seen more than enough evidence to know it's real, but it's still 2020 and they haven't announced it yet."

EA have never officially announced the remastered trilogy but there have been many reports of the games existing. The last game in the series, Mass Effect: Andromeda, was a commercial flop and DLC that was planned for the game was scrapped. That said, the game got decent reviews including an 8/10 from ourselves.

I found it hard to be excited during the opening hours of Mass Effect: Andromeda. It feels too safe, too much like what's gone before, but then it clicks. There's a moment where the galaxy opens up and you find yourself embarking once more on a huge mission across compelling, beautifully constructed planets, surrounded by memorable characters. Sadly the glut of technical missteps serve to cheapen proceedings, but this is still an adventure you don't want to miss out on.

Source: Twitter, thanks to Posem for the tip.

Worm Jazz Review

Meet Mr Mark. He's a funky earthworm who loves a good hat, food, and a bit of smooth jazz. He's basically me!

Worm Jazz is a very cute puzzler that sees you guiding Mr Mark around small mazes to gobble up food and reach the golden apple at the end of the level. There's one catch: whenever you eat a piece of food, you grow bigger in a manner similar to the Nokia phone classic Snake. There's no time pressure here, but it still quickly makes getting around levels pretty difficult, and it soon becomes clear that it will never just be a straight shot from start to finish. You'll soon find yourself struggling for space as you run out of it, having to backtrack on yourself using the handy undo button. Get used to that button, it's about to become your best friend!

As you progress, more obstacles will present themselves to you, the most common being mines. If you touch mines, you die. Simple. Thankfully, green food laying around the place enables you to survive the blast, removing your head and growing a new one in place. Good old Mr Mark. This is also where eat order comes into play. If a green piece of food is eaten followed by ten regular pieces before you run into mine, you'll lose ten pieces of your body, but if you eat ten pieces before the green and run into a mine, you'll just lose the one piece. Depending on the situation, you'll need to decide when to eat that tasty green food.

But what if you like a bit of spice in your diet? Enter the spicy red food. These cause secondary explosions when you hit a mine, if eaten after a green food. That can be handy when coming up against destructible walls, but means you need to figure out the eat order so there's the exact amount of spaces between where you hit the mine and where the explosion occurs. One particular level stuck out was have to tie together eighth explosions in a chain, meaning I spent about 20 minutes counting what I was eating, going forward, measuring my body against the rocks and then undoing all my progress if I was wrong. It required some serious brain power to figure out.

Later, the game is changed once again when you get to the portals. If things weren't complicated enough, now you have to work your way through space and time in order to eat all the delicious food. These portals split your worm and give rise to some really inventive ways of completing levels, squeezing your body into as much space as possible. Some levels get especially tight, using every single empty space to complete, and you'll eventually have multiple pairs of portals on screen at once making for levels that require an insane amount of big brain energy to complete.

All of the mechanics are introduced gradually, giving you time to get to grips with each one. I'm not usually great at puzzlers like this, so I appreciated the length I was given between introducing new mechanics. It felt like the right amount of time, even if I struggled with many of the levels.

That doesn't stop you from encountering a number of difficulty spikes, and there were quite a few moments where I just sat there in despair as I couldn't work out what I was doing wrong. The undo button was getting sick of me, I reckon! That said, I respect the puzzle design. They all adhere to some very sound logic and utilization of the space around you. Can you squeeze into this tight space? Try it, it might be the solution you are looking for. Experimentation is massively encouraged. When you can't quite see a solution, try new things. You might surprise yourself. Solving a puzzle that you've been stuck on for ages makes you feel like you've ascended to a higher plane of consciousness.

Each level can be completed with a one star rating fairly easily. This normally only requires you to collect a small number of food. If you really want to shoot for that three star rating, you'll need to collect everything. I often found myself simply punting for a one star rating and then coming back later once I'd gained some brain power, to clean up.

It helps that you have very smooth jazz playing in the background. I always joke that the perfect evening is chilling in a lounge chair, playing something casual, sipping on a rich coffee with a smooth jazz medley playing in the background. Worm Jazz comes pretty close to that, its mellow soundtrack taking the edge off the stress of trying to figure out quite intense puzzles. To add to the class even further, you can even unlock new hats for Mr Mark as you play. A worm in a top hat is certainly a sight to behold.

The second goose in Untitled Goose Game's new co-op mode has a different honk

No two naughty geese are quite alike, which is going to be handy with the launch of the big co-op update for Untitled Goose Game later this week.

Doubling the trouble, you'll notice the subtle differences between the two geese visually with the new, second goose having a pinker beak and feet, as well as what's known as a basal knob at the base of their bill (yes, I did spend the last 5 minutes looking up the correct term). This could actually be an indication of domestication, not that this will help the little village it's about to terrorise. There's also a new and distinctive timbre to the tone of their honk, as you can see below.

While it should probably be re-untitled as Untitled Geese Game, the update for Untitled Goose Game will be a free update to the game on 23rd September for all platforms. It's also at this time that the game will arrive on Steam and Itch for purchase, in addition to the Epic Games Store, Nintendo Switch, PS4 and Xbox One.

Untitled Goose Game was one of the indie hits of last year, racking up over 1 million sales in its first few months on sale. It spawned a bunch of memes and saw geese appearing at The Game Awards, among other memeable places.

The Goose was also one of the few gaming characters to reveal their political allegiance and urged gamers to vote Labour during the 2019 general election. Unfortunately, despite his popularity the Goose's powers were still limited when it comes to politics.

"At the end of the day – the long hard day of being a naughty little goose – Untitled Goose Game is something truly unique and special," we said in out 9/10 review. "It's a beautifully clean and simple puzzle game which will have you howling with delight, both when you play it through for the first time, and when you pass the controller to your partner saying, "You absolutely need to play this game where you're a naughty little goose…"

Source: Twitter

Bandai Namco acquire the studio behind next-gen action adventure Unknown 9: Awakening

With one of the splashier cinematic reveals for a next-gen game, Unknown 9 is set to be a multimedia experience with the third-person narrative-driven action adventure Unknown 9: Awakening a key pillar. Now Bandai Namco have given the game a major vote of confidence by acquiring Canadian developer Reflector Entertainment.

The acquisition is a part of Bandai Namco's overarching goal of broadening their portfolio to be a 50:50 split between Japanese and Western games. This won't see their strong anime-heavy line up diminish, but will expand to include more games like The Dark Pictures Anthology and Unknown 9.

Unknown 9 has already grown a bit of a following, including a mystery-thriller novel from bestselling author Layton Green entitled Unknown 9: Genesis, a podcast called Unknown 9: Out of Sight and a comic book called Unknown 9: Torment. Fans can delve even further into the world's lore via where there's Unknown 9: Chapters, an "interactive, community-driven experience" whatever that might mean.

Then there's Unknown 9: Awakening. The game will follow the exploits of Haroona, a street urchin raised in Kolkata, India who's haunted by visions of her own demise. She doesn't let these overpower her, and is soon set on a path that sees her growing to understand her innate abilities while accessing the mysterious dimension known as The Fold.

Unknown 9: Awakening is expected to release for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X | S and PC in 2021.

Source: press release

Pathfinder: Kingmaker – Definitive Edition Review

I was pretty excited to play Pathfinder: Kingmaker. It's based on the ruleset of the tabletop RPG Pathfinder, which I've never played, but the fact that I've never actually played Dungeons and Dragons hasn't stopped me playing countless other CRPGs based on that ruleset either. The game promises an epic story, dungeon crawling, loot, countless spells, even political intrigue! Anything that has both political intrigue and giant spiders is always worth a look, in my opinion.

Originally releasing on PC almost two years ago now after being crowd funded in 2017, the Definitive Edition release for consoles comes with expansion packs and other DLC that was added after release, making it somehow even bigger. Make no mistake, Pathfinder: Kingmaker is gargantuan. The world map is split up into 13 regions and I spent all of chapter one (which took me five days to finish) in just two of them. That might give you an idea of just how big it is, but even outside of the actual size, the ambition behind the game is staggering.

On top of the whole RPG thing, which some might say is plenty complex already, there's the management of a kingdom to think about as well. If you want to and you know what you're doing, you can conquer and rule the whole continent. Thankfully, its difficulty is customisable, so if you don't want to spend time managing your kingdom you can make it easier so it doesn't take up so much time, or just set it to automatic and focus on the combat. It's worth giving it a try though, as it is very rewarding, both in regards to acquiring cash or loot and it gives you a unique perspective on how the overarching storylines are playing out compared to other games.

Kingmaker comes with 16 classes that include all the usual suspects and then some. The more unusual of these are the Kineticist, who channels elemental energy, or an Alchemist who can throw area of effect explosives. Each class then has four archetypes, so instead of a "standard" Rogue you can have a Eldritch Scoundrel, who can not only use a rogue's finesse weaponry to score sneak attacks, but can actually channel touch spells like Shocking Touch through it as well. I settled on an Eldtrich Archer, who does the same with ranged touch spells like Ray of Frost and his bow, and proceeded to immediately make mistakes in designing my character. Thankfully there is a respec option available, which now works after a game update.

Character creation is detailed and flexible, provided you know what you're doing. Occasionally the game neglects to tell you certain things during creation, such as when I was making a cleric with a side of fighter to gain their armour proficiencies, only to learn that the archetype of cleric I'd chosen couldn't wear any armour at all. Much like kingdom management, if you're a bit overwhelmed by managing the stats and skills of your character and all your companions you can set them to automatically level up, which will do just fine for a playthrough on standard difficulty.

Soon after you start playing, you're booted off to the Stolen Lands on a quest to defeat its current ruler, bandit leader The Stag Lord, and then take over the region. This initially seems like the main story and it could be in another game, but in Pathfinder it turns out to be the very beginning of a much grander plot.

The gameplay really opens after conquering the Stolen Lands, letting you roam the world map and even capture resources in your territories. Mercifully, it is an actual map that you use to travel between locations rather than just a gigantic world to walk around, though you're open to random encounters whilst travelling. Once you enter a location, combat will start once an enemy sees your party, and here's where things get a little odd as Kingmaker has two combat systems.

Either you can let your party of up to six characters manage themselves in real time, pausing and giving orders when necessary, or you can slow things all the way down and play turn-based. The turn-based mode was added after release, though the game apparently simulates the turns under the hood when you are playing real time anyway. It feels far more tactical and gives you more control, so I actually stuck with it, but you can swap between real time and turn-based at will.

The only real issue I've had with combat is that harder battles tend to manifest their difficulty by having your characters constantly miss; you can go through multiple rounds where multiple characters will fail to hit with every attack. It's obviously down to the luck of the simulated dice rolls, but it's immensely frustrating. There's also a bug I kept bumping into where I occasionally give an order to a character to attack, so they should walk to the target, then attack, but the character just wouldn't attack after approaching, despite the UI telling me that it was within distance. Sometimes they wouldn't even move, but either way you basically miss out on a turn for that character whenever it happens. You can remedy this by not trusting the game's UI and manually doing the walk and attack separately, but that shouldn't be necessary.

Eventually you will unlock kingdom management, at which point you basically find a decent strategy game in its own right layered on top of everything else. Events appear that can affect the wellbeing of your kingdom, dignitaries from other kingdoms will visit to play politics or throw barely-veiled insults, and you even build upgrades in settlements that receive bonuses based on how you arrange the buildings, which then all has knock on effects on the kingdom as a whole. You assign party members and other characters to advisor roles, then assign those advisors tasks and jobs, each of which takes a certain amount of in-game time. Then you wander off and go adventuring whilst they're doing it, hopefully returning just as they finish but more likely a week after them and… Oh! Now the kingdom is on fire. It's deeper than it has any right to be and it is honestly a little overwhelming, but as mentioned earlier, it can be customised to be easier or just be automatic. Just don't neglect it entirely, because if your kingdom falls, it's game over.

That's where I have a bit of an issue, though. The timing of those advisors' tasks against the length of in-game time spent in dungeons is often just a bit annoying. You can't manage your kingdom from a dungeon, so you'll just have to hope nothing serious happens while you're busy fighting 20 trolls. It takes more than a few in-game days for your entire kingdom to fall into ruin, but you never know, you could just be mid-quest when the weight of all your poor decisions comes crashing down upon you. Those last few days could make the difference and having a game over on the end of many hours of involved strategy and seems like it could result in a save file that's in an unwinnable state. Thankfully, you can make your kingdom invincible in the difficulty settings to ensure that doesn't happen.

What's not so great are the continuing reports of broken save files and progression halting black screens, despite a recent update aimed at fixing them. Personally, a respec bug has now been fixed, but I've lost progress through game crashes after the patch, and taken to saving before leaving areas and accessing kingdom management. We shouldn't really have to fight against the game to experience it properly.

Perhaps the most important element in this genre is the writing and Pathfinder really doesn't disappoint. Kingmaker is good at making characters seem like people, rather than lore libraries and quest givers, but I also enjoyed how funny it can be at times – the alchemist Jubilost has made me genuinely laugh aloud at his wry comments, which is a nice change of pace. Should you need a little help tracking the conversation, there's a glossary that you can access during dialogue to explain any bolded words and provide background information on other territories, history, or factions.

Outside of all of this, Kingmaker makes many of the sacrifices typical of the genre: a fixed camera that can't be rotated, graphics that could run on an integrated GPU, and dialogue that isn't part of the main story remaining unvoiced. Whilst the occasional storm looks pretty good, after playing Divinity: Original Sin and its sublime sequel, returning to a CRPG that makes those sacrifices just feels like a step back. The music, however, is quite a bit better, especially battle music which is full of fast, deep strings and excitement to go along with all the troll punching and skeleton raising.

Katamari Damacy Reroll is coming to PS4 and Xbox One this November

It's taken it's time, almost two years in fact, but Katamari Damacy Reroll will finally trundle on to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on November 20th. The game is a remaster of the fifteen year old PlayStation 2 game Katamari Damacy and also includes a new local two player mode in which you battle head to head.

If you've never played a Katamari game then all you need to to know is that you have to roll a sticky ball around scene, picking up sheep, buckets, people, cars, spoons, hotdogs, and a million other objects, all of which increase the size of your Katamari ball. Make the ball big enough, win the level, easy.

Featuring truly unique gameplay that's easy to pick-up and play and backed by a whimsical soundtrack, Katamari Damacy Reroll will transport players to a magical world of delight and fun where anything and everything can be rolled up into a Katamari ball.

The King of All Cosmos has knocked out all the stars in the sky after a particularly rambunctious night of fun. Realizing his mistake, The King has tasked his young son, The Prince, to go to Earth and roll up as many things as possible to recreate the missing celestial bodies. Paper clips, books, cars, buildings, mountains, and continents, nothing is too big or too small for The Prince and his adhesive Katamari ball. For players looking to challenge their friends to a "roll-off," Katamari Damacy Reroll will feature a head-to-head local multiplayer mode where the player who rolls up the biggest Katamari ball wins praise from the King of the Cosmos.

We reviewed the Switch version of the game back in December 2018 giving a magnificent score of 9/10.

"Whenever there's a conversation about video games and if they can be considered art, Katamari Damacy needs to be involved," said Miguel. "15 years ago, it arrived on PlayStation 2 touting an absolutely unheard of style of gameplay, art and music. 15 years later on the Nintendo Switch, and it remains one of a kind. Katamari Damacy is a wholly unique video game, and it is an unabashed love letter to the copy-and-paste pop aesthetic of Japanese 1990s pop culture. It's bright, weird, silly and cute, and is a must play for anyone, anywhere."

Source: YouTube

Monster Hunter Rise – 7 things you need to know

During last week's Nintendo Direct Mini showcase, Capcom showed off not one, but two new Monster Hunter titles.

Naturally it's Monster Hunter Rise which has fans talking, Capcom confirming that this latest entry in the popular franchise will launch exclusively for Nintendo Switch on March 26, 2021.

The above trailer gives us a pretty in-depth look at Monster Hunter Rise, showing off some of the new creatures and features being introduced to the series. However, those who stuck around after the Direct may have watched the follow-up panel explaining what was shown in this debut footage.

Monster Hunter series producer, Ryozo Tsujimoto and Monster Hunter Rise director, Yasunori Ichinose, touched on a number of core elements we'll go into now.

1. First up, we have the dual inspiration behind Monster Hunter Rise. The name, according to Tsujimoto, reflects the enhanced verticality Capcom have woven into the game with new movement and traversal options. The publisher also see this as a return to Monster Hunter's roots as a primarily handheld gaming series and one best played with friends.

2. In Monster Hunter Rise, players can climb and run across surfaces, scaling cliffs and using the new Wirebug tool to gives themselves mid-air grapple. Think of it as a Spider-Man swing, which can be used in combination with weapon attacks or with a dodge manoeuvre in combat.

3. Much like the sublime Monster Hunter: World, this new game will feature large scale open maps. Instead of being broken into sections separated by small loading screens, in Rise you can seamlessly travel and pursue monster between areas. Along with the verticality, this helps beef up the game's sense of scale.

4. As well as Felyne Palico companions, you can also train your own Palamute. This wolf-like Canyne allows you to ride, moving faster without depleting your stamina. While mounted you can also use certain items, the Palamute being an aggressive attacker during combat encounters. Capcom confirmed that you can take up to 2 companions on a hunt in solo play, or one each in multiplayer.

5. Let's talk about the new monsters. Capcom wasn't shy in revealing a handful of the creatures from its updated bestiary including Rise's flagship monster, the Magnamalo. We also copped a look at the bird-like Aknosom, the Great Izuchi, and the Tetranadon. Where the Great Izuchi will attack in co-ordination with smaller monsters, the Tetranadon is a large amphibian which changes its attack pattern as it inflates, sucking up earth.

6. One feature Capcom mentions is the improved interaction between monsters. We saw of this in Monster Hunter: World with monsters attacking one another in set piece struggles. There's more of that to come in Rise though the developer also teased something related which they're not willing to show off just yet.

7. Of course, Monster Hunter Rise has its own base where hunters will socialise as well as craft/upgrade gear, purchase items from vendors, and prepare for their excursions into the surrounding wilderness. Kamura Village also plays host to a number of characters that will help guide the game's story – you'll notice they also have English voiceovers.

Monster Hunter Rise launches next March and is currently available to pre-order via the Nintendo eShop with a pricier deluxe version cramming in some bonus items. We also know that a new range of Nintendo amiibo will be launching alongside it with additional cross-compatibility with Monster Hunter Stories 2.

There's still plenty Capcom has yet to show including monsters and environments, as well as the "rampage" they keep mentioning. Perhaps this is a new quest-type: maybe one that will involve a party of more than four hunters? We'll have to wait and see!

Tamarin Review

Tamarin really should have been awesome. A nostalgia fuelled love letter to the Rare classics of yesteryear, it effortlessly evokes fond memories of cult hit Jet Force Gemini from the N64. There's good reason for this too, with developer Chameleon Games made up of several key members from Rare's much beloved Nintendo glory days. There's clearly a ton of talent behind the scenes, from Banjo-Kazooie character designer Steve Mayles through to Donkey Kong Country composer David Wise, which is why I'm absolutely baffled that Tamarin kind of, well, sucks.

The set-up for Tamarin is refreshingly simple and devoid of backstory or world building. It can very easily be summed up: an army of evil industrial ants have invaded and destroyed the home of the Tamarins. The fowl Formicidae have kidnapped three members of the Tamarin family and so it's up to the player, as the sole surviving monkey, to launch a rescue mission. That's it, there's no further rationale required for the third person platforming and shooting that follows.

Tamarin is really a game of two halves. The first is a 3D Platformer that see's the player exploring and navigating a Metroidvania styled environment, gathering a plethora of collectables to unlock further progress. The second is a more traditional corridor shooter, as the Tamarin uses a very limited selection of weaponry to gun down the ant overlords. Despite their mechanical differences, both sections of the game are united by the fact that they are undermined by some poor design decisions.

But first, before the negativity apocalypse begins, let's cheer ourselves up by discussing the positives of Tamarin: the character and audio design. The Tamarin is without doubt the cutest and most loveable fluffy wuff I've ever laid my eyes on. It has fur so lovingly animated that it immediate invites comparisons to Sully, the fluffed up blue titan of Monsters Inc., which is a massive compliment. The soundtrack is similarly brilliant throughout, achieving the enviable balancing act of being both upbeat, distinctive and insanely, brain-scratchingly catchy. It's the equivalent of an entire soundtrack being made up of the LEGO Movie anthem Everything is Awesome. The battle music, in particular, is a funktastic highlight.

Right then, so that's the positives done.

The exploration segments of Tamarin are undermined entirely by some of the worst signposting I've seen in a video game… because there isn't any. The player is lobbed into a level with very little idea of where they are going. Eventually, after wandering aimlessly, you'll find a hedgehog who will ask you to find some collectables in order to unlock progress. The problem is, the hedgehog could be literally anywhere and the only visual identification of his possible location is a tiny pile of leaves. The game provides no visual or audio clues as to the path you should take.

On one particularly painful stretch of the game I spent forty minutes searching until I finally found that stupid hedgehog in a random corner of the map. He then demanded I wander the map some more to find fruit to feed his insatiable berry addiction so that he might give me a power-up for my trouble. You're lucky I was playing the game for review Mr Hedgehog, as were that not the case I'd show you exactly where you can stick those berries.

All that meandering is exacerbated in its tediousness by a series of repetitive environments that offer little variety in their appearance, causing the player to quickly get turned around and utterly lost. Worse, there's no landmarks to identify where you are and where you should be going; everything is composed of identical bushes, trees, rivers and rocks that make for some rather pretty screenshots (especially when cherrypicking the best-looking locations), but all end up blurring into one. There's one particular mountain that sticks out for just being a big mound of muddy brown textures.

If all that doesn't drive you to drink, then the 'super jump' mechanic will surely have you chaining shots of tequila. For certain jumps the Tamarin can inexplicably jump further. Only on very specific jumps, mind you. How do you know when he can jump further you ask? Well, when you reach the edge of certain platforms, and only when you reach the edge, a little yellow arrow will appear on the opposite platform that you can leap to. It means you have to check every accursed bit of a level just in case a yellow arrow appears. Why can't the Tamarin use his super jump to get to any of the other hundred odd platforms he can't reach? Your guess is as good as mine.

As I already said, the gunplay doesn't fare much better. At the start of specific closed environments, the thrice hated bundle of spikes will bestow upon the Tamarin some weaponry, which the little monkey can then used to go full Duke Nukem on a contingent of villainous ants. Here's where the game thematically really doesn't know what it wants to be. Up until this point everything has been a cutesy and fluffy collectathon, the Tamarin rolling into or jumping on the occasional beetle or dragonfly that simply disappears upon defeat. Now that same Tamarin is totting an Uzi and proceeds to eviscerate an army of ants.

Limbs are blasted off, heads are severed and ants explode in a giblet shower. You can even shoot and kill the cute Disney-esque birds you're meant to rescue. It's just plain weird and sits at odds with the rest of the game, like the exploration and shoot 'em up sections were designed by entirely separate teams and then quickly stitched together at the end of development.

I'd say there's moderately more fun to be had blasting ants than exploring the environment, but not by much. There's a handful of unit types to battle, but you foes are essentially the same ant foot soldier in a variety of different colours. Signposting is even a mess in these brief shooting episodes, with more aimless wandering to be had. One section in a factory was a particularly joyless experience that finally came to an end with no build up at all. There's no pacing to the combat, no peaks or troughs, just blast a couple of ants and move on.

Aiming is woolly and indistinct, with no-lock on function and a camera that is slow and sluggish in its response, except for when the Tamarin is shooting at ants above ground level. In that instance the Tamarin can lock on to the target like a pro. Why can you lock on to some ants and not all the others? I'll be honest and state that by this point I'd entirely ceased to care.

Xbox Series S backward compatibility could double Xbox One frame rates with as few as "three lines of code"

Backward compatibility has been thrown into the spotlight again after the announcement of the Xbox Series S, with the lower powered console able to play all the same games as Xbox Series X can, but questions raised over if and how it can enhance those games compared to the Xbox One S and Xbox One X.

Microsoft have now detailed (via Digital Foundry) just what the Series S will be capable of across the whole range of backward compatible titles.

For original Xbox and Xbox 360, the Series S will be able to meaningfully upscale and enhance those games. In a similar fashion to the Xbox One X and Xbox Series X, the emulation layer will be able to up the game's rendering resolution on select games – the same ones already listed as Xbox One X Enhanced.

This will be done in line with the Xbox Series S' 1440p target resolution from Microsoft, so enhanced Xbox games running at 480p will be given a 3x boost on both axes (giving us 9x the resolution), while Xbox 360 games will have their 720p resolution doubled. In both cases this results in a native 1440p. These can then be further upscaled by the Series S to 4K resolution.

Much more interesting is the situation with Xbox One backward compatibility. As was previously confirmed, the Xbox Series S will not be able to take advantage of Xbox One X Enhanced modes in games. Though the biggest benefits here came from resolutions up to 4K and performance modes for higher frame rates, games could also have higher detail game assets that make use of the Xbox One X's larger amount of RAM. In other words, Series S backward compatibility will play games in One S mode, restricted to any resolutions and frame rate limits that developers coded for – often this could top out at 900p instead of 1080p – but able to use the power to stabilise dynamic resolutions and frame rates at their highest setting.

However, there's still the possibility to meaningfully enhance games beyond that. On a system level, the SSD will reduce loading times and Auto HDR can will add HDR to games that don't natively support it, but Microsoft have talked up the ease with which developers can add Series S specific resolution and frame rate modes.

System architect Andrew Goossen told Digital Foundry, "We made it easy for existing Xbox One S games to be updated to run with double the frame-rate when played on Series S as well. When games are updated, existing games can query to determine whether they're running on the new console. And in terms of the performance, the Series S provides well over double the effective CPU and GPU performance over the Xbox One, making it pretty straightforward for the games to do this. And in fact, the Series S GPU runs the Xbox One S games with better performance than the Xbox One X."

Because of that, "There's no real perf tuning necessary when you do this, and so often it's just as easy as changing three lines of code, and then the game works." Sometimes it's not quite that simple and some elements in games can be tied to certain frame rates, but Goossen emphasises that these should be simple to fix as well.

As for which games will be enhanced? Well, games with large communities and active development will likely be enhanced like this, sp even if the developers don't plan to make a dedicated version for Xbox Series X|S they could be improved, but Microsoft are working with as many developers as possible to try and have games enhanced.

Microsoft's compatibility team could also take over, as they have for the process of enhancing Xbox and Xbox 360 games. As in those cases, there's ways to override a game's coding to enable different texture filtering, modify resolutions and so on, but it seems that Microsoft will continue to do this in collaboration with developers instead of making unilateral changes.

It's quite a fascinating proposition, but will really depend on how widely it's adopted by developers. I'm sure that more recent games still being patched will likely roll such changes into their next update, and some legacy games that had Xbox marketing partnerships like the Assassin's Creed or Tomb Raider series could be nudged to have such changes made, but don't expect something like F1 2017 or Black Ops III to get tweaked.

Source: Digital Foundry

Sony apologises for PS5 preorder issues, confirms more consoles will be available

The PS5 pre-order process could have been a lot smoother. Sony had stated that it was going to give people plenty of warning for when pre-orders would start, but that did not happen. Instead, after the PS5 Showcase Sony stated pre-orders would start the next day but did not communicate times, nor which retailers would have them at what time. While we tried to keep on top of notifying people of where pre-orders were happening there was still a lot of confusion, and a lot of disappointment as people missed out due to Sony's poor communication. Now Sony has apologised and confirmed more pre-orders will be going live soon.

Even though Sony has confirmed there will be more PS5s available it is leaving the details up to retailers to spread, so buyers will have to track down the console themselves. Counter this to Microsoft's approach who have confirmed the date, times, and the retailers of Xbox Series X|S pre-orders. The full details of those are:

  • UK (8AM BST): Microsoft Store, GAME, Amazon, Dixons, Currys PC World, Argos, John Lewis, Smyths Toys, VERY, AO, Tesco, Simply Games, ShopTo and other participating retailers
  • United States (8AM PT / 11AM ET): Microsoft Store, Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Walmart, Target, Sam's Club, Newegg, and other participating retailers
  • Canada (8AM PT): Microsoft Store, Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, EB Games, The Source, and other participating retailers
  • Australia (8AM AEST): Microsoft Store, JB Hifi, EB Games, Telstra, Harvey Norman, and other participating retailers
  • New Zealand (8AM NZST): Microsoft Store, JB HiFi, EB Games, Spark, and other participating retailers

It gets trickier in other regions though. For Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, you pre-orders start at 9AM CEST at Microsoft Store, Amazon, MediaMarkt, GameStop, FNAC, Elkjøp/Elgiganten, and other participating retailers. These will differ from country to country.

Source: Twitter

Next Epic free game confirmed, get Football Manager 2020 now

With all the next-gen announcements popping off, it seems we're definitely knee-deep in peak video game season. Amidst all this madness we still have a comforting constant in Epic Games and their weekly giveaways.

For a while now, Epic has been doling out free games to its users – from AAA new releases to older indies. This week you'll be able to redeem two hefty titles including Ubisoft hack 'em up sequel, Watch Dogs 2, and Football Manager 2020.

Just last week it seemed as though the only free game we'd be getting is Stick It To The Man! so it's great to see these two extra freebies thrown on top as a bonus for Epic users. The company have also confirmed its next free game, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3: Complete Edition, will be touching down next Thursday. Originally released in 2004, we can't wait to strap in for a breakneck dose of theme park management nostalgia.

Want to know more about which games Epic have offered in the past? Here's the complete list, tagged with our reviews.

Rollercoaster Tycoon 3: Complete Edition September 24-October 1, 2020
Football Manager 2020 September 17-24, 2020
Watch Dogs 2 September 17-24, 2020
Stick It To The Man! September 17-24, 2020
Railway Empire September 10-17, 2020
Where The Water Tastes Like Wine September 10-17, 2020
Into The Breach September 3-10, 2020
Hitman August 27-September 3, 2020
Shadowrun Collection August 27-September 3, 2020
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


Source: Epic Games

Something for the Weekend – 19/09/20

Just a week after Microsoft lifted the lid on the new Xbox, Sony have revealed the all important details about the PS5 in a short but snappy presentation on Wednesday night. Since then, trying to get your hands on a pre-order has been a bit of a kerfuffle, but let us know below if you've been one of the successful ones!

In the News This Week

First up, here's everything about the PlayStation 5:

And here's what else happened:


If you're into your Battle Royales, we've got a pretty snazzy giveaway this week, with 10 Spellbreak PS4 Founder's Packs worth a whopping £99.99 up for grabs!

The contents include a Keymaster Outfit, Bughunter Outfit, Mystic Outfit, Master Badge, Battlemage Badge, Mage Badge and 15,000 Gold, with the giveaway running until Friday 25th September.

Games in Review

It felt like quite a hit-or-miss week for the reviews, but there's some near essential games in the mix.

Featured Articles

Turning our attention to the previews, Jim's initial scepticism was brushed aside once he went hands on with Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time – and you can also try out the Demo if you pre-order. Meanwhile, Steve enjoyed Remothered: Broken Porcelain, saying that it's certainly improved – in fact, it's "just the sequel that I was hoping for".

Elsewhere, Jim asked whether For Honor was still worth playing in 2020, as Stefan questioned whether the disclosure that several PS5 exclusives would be coming to PS4 prove that Microsoft were right with their approach to cross-generational gaming.

Last up, the What We Played crew gathered round to discuss what next-gen console they will be buying.

Trailer Park

Deathloop gets a brand-new PS5 gameplay trailer

Watch the new Spider-Man: Miles Morales gameplay video

Resident Evil 8: Village has a new trailer from the PS5 showcase

Some new Oddworld Soulstorm gameplay shown for PS5

Your Achievements

Instead of asking the community what you've been playing this week, we asked what your plans were for the next generation.

Already having secured PS5 pre-orders are TSBonyman, doomsday619, Andrewww and beeje13, while Matthijs, MrYd and a few others are hoping there'll be a second batch down the line.

Ico, seems to be the only one planning to grab an Xbox on day one, the value of Game Pass hard to pass up, but others are tempted by the Xbox Series X or S sometime down the line.

Meanwhile, tactical20 is holding out for a souped up Nintendo Switch, the plucky hybrid having rekindled his love of gaming since its release.

Have a good weekend and I'll see you again soon!