Despite being two years old, Bandai Namco's Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown continues to receive support. Its next DLC, the 25th Anniversary DLC: Experimental Aircraft Series, will be releasing in Spring. It adds three new fighters and 13 new skins. Check them out in the trailer below.
The new fighters in question are the F-15 S/MTD Short, the FB-22 Strike Raptor and the F-16XL. The DLC's selection is fitting for the 25th anniversary celebration especially with these aircraft being fan favorites. As for the new skins, check out the full list below.
- Z.O.E. Skin (YF-23 Black Widow II)
- Varcolac Skin (A-10C Thunderbolt II)
- Huckebein Skin (MiG-21bis Fishbed)
- Grabacr Skin (Su-47 Berkut)
- Ofnir Skin (Su-37 Terminator)
- Markov Skin (Su-35S Flanker-E)
- Red Moon Skin (MiG-29A Fulcrum)
- Butterfly Master Skin (CFA-44 Nosferatu)
- Strigon Skin (Su-33 Flanker-D)
- Sorcerer Skin (F-15 S/MTD)
- Wizard Skin (F-16XL)
- Markov Skin (Su-57)
- Flash Skin (FB-22 Strike Raptor)
A price point has yet to be announced for the DLC. Stay tuned for more details on that, along with a release date, in the coming weeks. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown is currently available for Xbox One, PS4 and PC with over two million in worldwide shipments and digital sales. It's also available on Xbox Game Pass and PlayStation Now. Check out our official review here.
Last week saw the launch of Outriders after a couple of delays, and all signs point to the game having potentially done pretty well for Square Enix and People Can Fly. The looter shooter has a surprisingly addictive gameplay loot and many people seem to be enjoying it pretty well. Having said that, it seems as if there have been a lot of issues, and ones the developer hopes to get specific about down the road.
There have been lots of reports of players being unable to connect to the servers, or having to log in multiple times to do so. Since the game is required to be online, even if you're playing solo, this has caused a lot of grief over the course of the week of the game post-launch. In a post from the official Twitter account, the developers acknowledged there were issues and said they hope to get more specific down the line about what caused the bulk of these issues as well as what they're doing to address the problem. It's unclear what that means, obviously, but it will be interesting to see if they have pinpointed what the core problem is.
Outriders is available now on most major platforms. For the game's possible post-launch plans of full expansions, you can read through here.
We're still continually working through it all, but we're hoping to in the near future share more specific details about whats going on and what we've been doing about it. https://t.co/MWf8IHIf5L
— Outriders (@Outriders) April 3, 2021
Housemarque has a new episode of HouseCast available with Returnal's narrative director Gregory Louden discussing the story-telling. There's also a bit of new gameplay footage to see from 10:50 onwards, primarily showcasing the combat. Check it out below.
While the player starts sympathizing with protagonist Selene at the beginning, that shifts towards understanding Atropos and its inhabitants. You'll begin to understand how they came to be and survive on the planet. Of course, the player is dropped right into the action from the start so they'll learn as much about what's going on as Selene will.
Most intriguing about the game's story is how its narrative events are randomized in each run so you'll learn something new each time. Returnal is currently slated to release on April 30th for PS5. For more details on the gameplay, head here to learn more about daily challenges and here for details on the Adrenaline and Overload mechanics.
After vanishing for an extended period of time, Atomic Heart resurfaced. The shooter and immersive sim has been in the midst of showing off various aspects of the game such as its neat photo mode as well as showcasing its ray-tracing elements. Now we get a big look at the game with a lot of footage.
Posted curtesy of GameCross, we got just under 22 minutes of what's listed as pre-alpha gameplay footage. Some parts of the video is something of a highlight reel showing what appears to be various action and gameplay sequences as a quick cut video, while the rest is closer to a traditional gameplay demo. We see a lot of different enemies, setting and weapons in action. Check it out in full below.
Atomic Heart is set to release sometime this year for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and PC. You can check out the PC requirements for the game through here.
Though Ubisoft have been awfully quiet about Rainbow Six Quarantine (or whatever they wind up actually calling it), a number of leaks in the last few weeks have revealed plenty of new details on the co-op PvE shooter, showing new gameplay details and providing glimpses of what the game is going to be like when it finally launches. Now, another leak shows about five minutes of new gameplay footage.
There's plenty of action being shown off here, and the video encapsulates the structure of missions in the game pretty neatly. Everything from aliens and weapons to gadgets and environments are shown off, and it's clear that the game seems to be attempting to strike a balance between using familiar elements from other Rainbow Six games (especially Siege) and injecting some of its own new ideas as well. Check it out below.
Multiple recent leaks have suggested that Rainbow Six Quarantine is going to be renamed to Parasite, but Ubisoft has said that that's just a name given to it for internal testing purposes, and that the final name is yet to be revealed.
Ubisoft has previously said that the shooter is going to launch by September by the latest, but new updates on the game have been scant since then. Stay tuned for more details as they come our way.
Sony has revealed the next slate of titles that will be available on PlayStation Now tomorrow, starting with Marvel's Avengers. The live-service action adventure has received a new update, "Operation: Hawkeye – Future Imperfect", along with official support for the PS5. It will be available until July 5th on the service.
Next up is Borderlands 3, Gearbox's long-awaited sequel that offers four new Vault Hunters, a new story and plenty of new loot to chase. With the Director's Cut DLC out this week, it's a good time to acquaint one's self with the end-game. Borderlands 3 will be available on PlayStation Now until September 29th.
Finally, there's The Long Dark, a survival exploration title set in a frozen wasteland. The player must struggle to survive against the harsh weather while also dealing with any wild animals that may beset them. There's currently no time limit for the game so experience it at your own pace. Stay tuned for more details on new titles for PlayStation Now in the coming months.
Square Enix is gearing up for Final Fantasy 14's next major patch along with the open beta for the PS5 version. Along with revealing all of the new content in patch 5.5 "Death Unto Dawn – Part 1", it was also confirmed via press release to have over 22 million registered users worldwide. This includes accounts from Japan, North America, Korea, China and Europe along with free trial players.
The critically acclaimed MMO is showing no signs of slowing down either. Patch 5.5 will add new Main Scenario Quests, the next part of the YoRHa: Dark Apocalypse raid, a new trial and much more. It goes live on April 13th alongside the PS5 open beta and depending on its progress, the full game could go live soon after.
After the next part of Death Unto Dawn, which is due in May, Final Fantasy 14 will receive its next major expansion Endwalker. It ventures to the Moon and concludes the current long-running story while adding two new Jobs and the Pandemonium raid. Endwalker is out this Fall so stay tuned for more details in the coming months.
Disco Elysium's launch back in 2019 may not have been preceded by an awful lot of fanfare, but it didn't take long after it released for everyone to realize what a special game it was. Widespread acclaim, truckloads of awards and accolades, and excellent word of mouth combined to make the industry sit up and take notice, and those who played the unique, off-beat RPG realized that this was the sort of game that would be recognized as an instant classic and a giant of the genre for years to come. Now, with Disco Elysium – The Final Cut, developer ZA/UM has brought the seminal RPG to wider audiences outside the PC ecosystem, and made several improvements to the game in the process. The result is an excellent achievement that improves upon what was clearly already a great game.
Disco Elysium's biggest strength is its setting, and the fantastic world-building that breathes life into that setting. On the surface, it tells the story of a detective with a tragic past who is recovering from complete amnesia, but finds himself leading an investigation into a violent and mysterious murder. Thanks to that setup and the way it unfolds and progresses, the story is enjoyable even on that surface level. Discovering new pieces of the puzzle and then putting them together as you attempt to get to the heart of the mystery is captivating, and made even more so by the excellent characters that serve as the main players in the story. Even so, that initial narrative drive ends up taking a backseat to the larger stories Disco Elysium tells in and through its world.
"Disco Elysium's biggest strength is its setting, and the fantastic world-building that breathes life into that setting."
The game takes place in Martinaise, a district in the city of Revachol, which has a long and violent history of revolutions, failed governments, and violence, and currently teeters on the edge of chaos under the control of a coalition of governments. Disco Elysium leverages its setting in incredible ways to tackle complex themes, and keeps asking players fascinating questions in ways that feel organically tied to the story and to its world. Revachol has a rich and fascinating history, the people of Martinaise that you meet throughout the game are all delightfully bizarre and full of personality, and it feels like no matter where you're going or what you're doing, you're constantly uncovering new details to deepen your understanding of Disco Elysium's world.
What helps, of course, is the consistently excellent writing- which is a good thing, because Disco Elysium is heavy on text, and reading through it is how you're going to spend the bulk of your time while playing the game. The game constantly strikes the perfect balance between showing and telling, between being subtle and being explicit, between being funny and being gruesomely dark. In The Final Cut, every single written line is also fully voiced. That in and of itself is an impressive accomplishment, given the fact that there's over a million written words in the game- but that achievement is made that much more worthy of praise thanks to the excellent quality of voice work. Every character has a unique voice that seems to suit their words and their personality perfectly, with the narrator in particular being the star of the show here.
But, of course, Disco Elysium doesn't just succeed in terms of storytelling, writing, and world-building- it is an excellent role playing game as well. It's incredibly unique, and goes about doing familiar things in very off-beat ways, and executes those ideas perfectly. The game is completely lacking in combat, and is instead centered first and foremost around skill checks. There are two dozen different skills that you can invest in, and depending on how you choose to build your character throughout the course of the game, you can be anything from a walking repository of endless knowledge to a brute who solves problems with his fist, from someone who seeks to understand the pain of people to a detective with a keen eye and a brilliant mind who never misses any detail.
"Revachol has a rich and fascinating history, the people of Martinaise that you meet throughout the game are all delightfully bizarre and full of personality, and it feels like no matter where you're going or what you're doing, you're constantly uncovering new details to deepen your understanding of Disco Elysium's world."
Add to that more role playing mechanics in the form of things such as the Thought Cabinet – where you internalize new thoughts to earn various boosts and buffs – or even equipping new pieces of clothes to buff up various stats, and what you have is a game with impressive build variety. The sheer variety and breadth of options available in how you want to progress your character and interact with the world is staggering. Granted, it's no Divinity: Original Sin 2 in that regard, but in relation to the game's size and scope, it's enough for more than just a few replays, each wildly different from the other.
How your detective behaves, responds to people, and reacts to situations also helps define their character, a big part of which is what political ideology they subscribe to. You can choose to someone who is seeking to incite a revolution, someone who just wants to keep the status quo going, someone who wants to keep the corporations and those in power in charge, or even someone who'd rather just watch it all play out from the sidelines. These choices not only further enrich the excellent world of Disco Elysium, they also contribute significantly to the aforementioned variety.
Disco Elysium – The Final Cut, however, does have a few issues- and many of these are exclusive to The Final Cut. Most are strictly technical. For instance, often, the audio for lines doesn't play, and every once in a while I'd go through bits and pieces of conversations or internal monologues where the voice acting would completely disappear. Meanwhile, during my time playing the game on a PS5, I also encounter a couple of crashes. Granted, a couple isn't too many, but both of them did cost me a decent amount of progress since my last autosave, so they were definitely a source of frustration.
"But, of course, Disco Elysium doesn't just succeed in terms of storytelling, writing, and world-building- it is an excellent role playing game as well."
The user interface in Disco Elysium – The Final Cut is also far from perfect. Scrolling through all the interactable objects with the right stick feels unintuitive and inaccurate. Often, I would try interacting with highlighted elements, but the game wouldn't read that I'd pressed the X button until I moves around a little and did it again. Walking around can also be a bit of a hassle at times, specifically when you're navigating around confined and claustrophobic areas. There are a few other issues as well, such as the readability of a few elements in the game's menu. None of these game-breaking issues by any means, and a few are definitely to be expected when playing a game like this on a controller, but put together, they do lead to moments of annoyance and clunkyness.
Minor issues aside though, this is a game that RPG fans absolutely shouldn't miss. Disco Elysium was already an excellent game when it first launched, and with The Final Cut, it's been made even better. The new changes and improvements breathe even more life into a world that was already brimming with personality, and though the flaws are not non-existent, they're easy to forgive. Anyone who hasn't played this game before needs to experience it for themselves, and anyone who has now has the perfect excuse to jump back in and play through an even better version of it.
This game was reviewed on the PlayStation 5.
Rumours and leaks over the past few weeks have suggested that Microsoft is going to have a fair number of events scheduled throughout the coming weeks and months, through which they're going to be making some pretty big announcements. And while those big announcements are, of course, likely going to be worth looking forward to, it seems Microsoft also plans on having a few smaller events here and there to complement its bigger conferences.
One such event came at the end of last month with the first ever Xbox indie showcase, but it seems more stuff is coming up. Over on ZDNet, Mary Jo Foley – who's been known to be a credible Microsoft leaker in the past – recently published a report in which she stated that Microsoft will be hosting a series of smaller events at a regular basis, called "What's Next". The first of these, a "What's Next for Gaming" event, is supposedly coming up "in the coming weeks."
Microsoft does have a number of notable releases coming up, including the likes of Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox Series X/S and Psychonauts 2, and both those games haven't received any updates for a while now. An event in the coming weeks might be the perfect time to confirm release dates for such games.
Meanwhile, in a few days, Microsoft is going to be talking about Age of Empires 4 in an AoE-focused event. Plans for larger, more traditional conferences in the Summer are also underway. Additionally, reports have suggested that Microsoft and Bethesda are both going to have their own individual conferences around E3.
The latest UK weekly charts for physical video game sales are in (via GamesIndustry), and there's been some interesting activity. People Can Fly and Square Enix's new RPG shooter Outriders has gotten off to a solid start, debuting in sixth place. It saw 52% of its sales on the PS5, 31% on the PS4, and 17% on Xbox. It's worth noting that the game is also available via Xbox Game Pass on Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S, which doubtless would have impact its total retail sales and Xbox figures.
Meanwhile, Monster Hunter Rise has also been enjoying incredible global sales since its launch, and debuted on top of the UK charts last week. This week, it has fallen to fourth place. Taking the top spot instead is FIFA 21, which saw an 81% week-over-week increase in sales.
A number of other games have also seen similar increases, in particular thanks to the Easter week sales. Animal Crossing: New Horizons (at No. 2) saw an 11% bump, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury (No. 3) is u 16%, and Ring Fit Adventure has seen an impressive 127% increase to re-enter the top 10 at No. 7. Meanwhile, Super Mario 3D All-Stars' limited run may have ended, but stocks are still available at some retailers, and the game occupies eighth place in the charts this week.
You can check out the full top 10 for the week ending April 3 below.
- FIFA 21
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons
- Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury
- Monster Hunter Rise
- Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- Ring Fit Adventure
- Super Mario 3D All-Stars
- Assassin's Creed Valhalla
- Minecraft (Switch)