#egmr » A-G http://egmr.net Let's Talk Games — Videogame News, Reviews & Opinions Fri, 31 Oct 2014 00:35:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Mark Zuckerberg Says Oculus Rift Needs To Sell 50-100 Million Units To Be Meaningful http://egmr.net/2014/10/mark-zuckerberg-says-oculus-rift-needs-sell-50-100-million-units-meaningful/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/mark-zuckerberg-says-oculus-rift-needs-sell-50-100-million-units-meaningful/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 15:00:32 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161755 At first glance you may think he’s talking about money ie meaningful to Facebook or in the Destiny sense of things, “it needs to sell 15 million units to not […]

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At first glance you may think he’s talking about money ie meaningful to Facebook or in the Destiny sense of things, “it needs to sell 15 million units to not be a failure.” It turns out that’s not what he’s on about at all.

Marky Mark actually has some valid points regarding the virtual reality hardware and what it needs to do in order to be more than just another fad. Oops. Wrong Mark. Granted, the other one did spend his last movie going around and calling himself “an inventor.”

During Facebook’s Q3 2014 earnings call, Mark Zuckerberg reaffirmed his belief that Oculus Rift is a long-term project that will take “a few cycles” before it embeds itself into the tech sector.

We’ve previously discussed VR being a niche market, especially at the price the units will likely go for. 3D TVs are the same but the hope is that VR headsets will become a more necessary accessory in the same way that iPads or smart watches have.

“As I’ve said before, with Oculus we’re making a long-term bet on the future of computing”, Zuckerberg stated. “Every 10-15 years a new major computing platform arrives, and we think virtual and augmented reality are important parts of this upcoming next platform.

“This quarter Oculus continued to make progress towards this vision. In September, the first Oculus developer conference took place where we announced a new prototype VR headset on the path to the consumer version of the Rift.

“We continue to see a lot of excitement in the developer community, and we’ve now shipped more than 100,000 Rift developer kits to over 130 countries.

“It’s still early days for Oculus, but we’re encouraged to see the variety of apps and games being developed for the platform.

“Our efforts here will take longer to achieve their full impact, but we’re going to continue preparing for the future by investing aggressively.”

Zuckerberg understands that it will take a “bunch of years” for Oculus to get where it needs to be but put a number on it by saying that for it to be considered an important platform the Oculus Rift would need to sell 50-100 million headsets.

I think it could sell less and still be more than just a passing trend but I’m not the billionaire genius.

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Dying Light Gets Killed Off… Sort Of http://egmr.net/2014/10/dying-light-gets-killed-sort/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/dying-light-gets-killed-sort/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 07:30:29 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161701 It’s a matter of perspective really, depending on who you are and which console you own. To use a metaphor from another zombie-centric work of fiction, in The Walking Dead […]

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It’s a matter of perspective really, depending on who you are and which console you own. To use a metaphor from another zombie-centric work of fiction, in The Walking Dead people often resort to amputation of limbs that have been bitten in order to save themselves. That’s basically what Techland and Warner Bros are  doing with Dying Light.

If you have an Xbox 360 or PS3 then I feel bad for you son, you got 99 games but Dying Light ain’t one.

Remind me to not attempt to paraphrase Jay Z again.

Dying Light’s development has been far from smooth. Initially slated for a release in 2013 it kept getting pushed back with no real confirmation of when it would be releasing. The final date seems to be set for January 30 2015 and it will only be releasing on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

Techland released an open letter to the public wherein they detail the reason for dropping the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game. As you might expect it comes down to the game simply not functioning as well on those consoles. They could release the game on the old consoles but it would apparently be a far inferior product.

Dear Gamers,
As you probably know, we’re wrapping up the development of Dying Light, our biggest and most ambitious project to date. We spent the last three years making sure that all the features of our game add up to create a truly next-gen experience.

Much of this “next-gen feel” is tightly connected to the technological side of Dying Light. For instance, up to 200 000 objects can be displayed in the game at once. Add to this our use of realistic, physics-based lighting technology and you really start to push the next-gen systems to the limits. Features like these along with our core gameplay pillars – such as the player-empowering Natural Movement, threefold character development system, and vast open world – are all an inherent part of how Dying Light plays. However, combining all of these into one fluid experience is only possible on technologically advanced platforms.

Therefore, after thorough internal testing, we have come to the conclusion that we have no choice but to leave past-gen systems behind and release Dying Light exclusively on the next-gen consoles and PC. Put simply, older consoles just couldn’t run the game and stay true to the core vision of Dying Light at the same time.

To ensure you enjoy Dying Light as much as we would like you to, we chose to release it without any compromises on the three strongest systems available. Thanks to this, you’ll get the full and best experience regardless of the platform you play on.

We hope you understand the hard choice we’ve had to make. With the launch just around the corner, we can’t wait to show you Dying Light in the state it was meant to be. We’re looking forward to your reactions and impressions as we release the game in January 2015.

They’re only realising this now? With mere months to go before release? Hell, the game would have been out already if it hadn’t been delayed again.

I think it’s a good decision but one that seems it should have been made some time ago.

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PSN Adopts The Foetal Position Once Again In The Wake Of PS4 Update http://egmr.net/2014/10/psn-adopts-foetal-position-wake-ps4-update/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/psn-adopts-foetal-position-wake-ps4-update/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 06:45:11 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161667 Sony has some ambitious plans for the future, and the present too actually, where use of online and social features are becoming more prevalent and notable not only in games […]

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Sony has some ambitious plans for the future, and the present too actually, where use of online and social features are becoming more prevalent and notable not only in games but on the hardware itself.

With PlayStation Now, Remote Play, a push for digital purchasing of games and a suite of sharing options the PS4 is very much a device that requires an internet connection in order to get the most out of it. Now there’s Share Play too to bolster the argument for a decent internet connection.

The only hindrance to all of this? The actual foundation upon which it is all being built. PSN has been adequate at best. At its worst it has been an unreliable and temperamental platform with poor security.

It’s no secret that PSN is a bit dodgy but it has been showing more and more with Sony putting a bigger emphasis on online features. It has been woefully evident in Driveclub although a good amount of that is down to the netcode too.

So where are we going with this?

The PS4 got a shiny new update yesterday that amongst other things added USB MP3 support, background colour options (so revolutionary!) and the much-touted Share Play. As you might imagine, a lot of people were keen to download the update and try it out.

PSN saw a large crowd heading towards it, threw its arms up comically, yelped “NOPE” and promptly adopted the foetal position.

There are reports of widespread outages across the world and while there were reports of connectivity issues early yesterday but as the day progressed they got exponentially worse. Surprisingly I was able to download my update just fine around midday yesterday.

Sony is aware of the problem and is working on it.

#4theplayers

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Get Your Name Mentioned In The Order: 1886 http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-name-mentioned-order-1886/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-name-mentioned-order-1886/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 06:00:02 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161666 Do you ever get the feeling that nobody knows you and that people don’t even know your name? Well, we’ve got something that won’t fix that but you will get […]

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Do you ever get the feeling that nobody knows you and that people don’t even know your name? Well, we’ve got something that won’t fix that but you will get your name appearing in a game and that’s something.

The game in question? The Order: 1886. Yes, that game that has a Victorian setting, awesome alternate history, lycans, zombies, knights and a dude named Gallahad. The same game that looks to have dead-average gameplay. You can have your name appear in that game. How exciting!

So what ethical boundaries do you need to breach to get a shot at it?

It’s really simple actually. All you need to do  is head over to the PlayStation South Africa Facebook page, click on the relevant post and answer a simple question.

In addition to having your name mentioned in The Order’s credits, you could also be the first person in the country to own The Order: 1886: Collector’s Edition along with some assorted branded merchandise (I’d be upset if that doesn’t include a mustache comb).

Entries close on Thursday Nov 6 with the winner being announced on Nov 7. You have plenty of time to decide whether this competition is worth getting a PS4 for. There’s always Sunset Overdrive. Look to your right, we rated it pretty highly.

I’ve never understood what you gain from having your name in the credits of a game, like people actually read those things. It’s like having an asteroid named after yourself.

That said, the competition is pretty cool.

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Who’s Up For A 34 Game Eidos Anthology? http://egmr.net/2014/10/whos-34-game-eidos-anthology/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/whos-34-game-eidos-anthology/#comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 15:00:45 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161665 Steam is the breeding ground of glorious sales and its latest one is absolutely ridiculous. A PC game will typically set you back maybe $60 so three of those will […]

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Steam is the breeding ground of glorious sales and its latest one is absolutely ridiculous. A PC game will typically set you back maybe $60 so three of those will set you back $180. For the same price you can now get 34 games.

Holy shit! This is a good deal, folks.

It’s called the Eidos Anthology and it encompasses Eidos games going all the way back to the original Tomb Raider and Thief titles. For $208 you can get all 34 games along with all the affiliated DLC for each. The list includes all Deus Ex, Tomb Raider, Thief and Hitman games.

One thing that stands out is just how many Tomb Raider games there have been. Lara has been busy.

Check out the full list and try to keep your jaw off the ground:

  • Battlestations Pacific
  • Battlestations: Midway
  • Blood Omen 2: Legacy of Kain
  • Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution – Director’s Cut
  • Deus Ex: Invisible War
  • Deus Ex: The Fall
  • Hitman 2: Silent Assassin
  • Hitman: Absolution: Agency HX UMP
  • Hitman: Absolution: Agency Jagd P22G
  • Hitman: Absolution: Agency SPS 12
  • Hitman: Absolution: Bartoli Custom Gun
  • Hitman: Absolution: Bronson M1928 Gun
  • Hitman: Absolution: Deus Ex (Adam Jensen) Disguise
  • Hitman: Absolution: Deus Ex (Adam Jensen) Handgun
  • Hitman: Absolution: High Roller Disguise
  • Hitman: Absolution: High Tech Disguise
  • Hitman: Absolution: Krugermeier 2-2 Gun
  • Hitman: Absolution: Public Enemy Disguise
  • Hitman: Absolution
  • Hitman: Blood Money
  • Hitman: Codename 47
  • Hitman: Contracts
  • Just Cause
  • Just Cause 2
  • Just Cause 2 – Black Market Boom Pack DLC
  • Just Cause 2: Agency Hovercraft
  • Just Cause 2: Black Market Aerial Pack DLC
  • Just Cause 2: Bull’s Eye Assault Rifle
  • Just Cause 2: Chevalier Classic
  • Just Cause 2: Monster Truck DLC
  • Just Cause 2: Rico’s Signature Gun DLC
  • Kane & Lynch 2: Alliance Weapon Pack4
  • Kane & Lynch 2: Multiplayer Masks Pack4
  • Kane & Lynch 2: The Doggie Bag4
  • Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days4
  • Kane and Lynch: Dead Men4
  • Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light
  • Lara Croft GoL: All the Trappings – Challenge Pack 1
  • Lara Croft GoL: Hazardous Reunion – Challenge Pack 3
  • Lara Croft GoL: Raziel and Kain Character Pack
  • Lara Croft GoL: Things that Go Boom – Challenge Pack 2
  • Legacy of Kain: Defiance
  • Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver
  • Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2
  • Nosgoth (Closed Beta)
  • Nosgoth – Veteran Pack
  • Thief
  • THIEF DLC: Booster Pack – Ghost
  • THIEF DLC: Booster Pack – Opportunist
  • THIEF DLC: Booster Pack – Predator
  • THIEF DLC: The Forsaken – Challenge Map
  • Thief Gold
  • Thief II: The Metal Age
  • Thief: Deadly Shadows
  • THIEF: The Bank Heist
  • Tomb Raider
  • Tomb Raider I
  • Tomb Raider II
  • Tomb Raider III
  • Tomb Raider IV: The Last Revelation
  • Tomb Raider V: Chronicles
  • Tomb Raider VI: The Angel of Darkness
  • Tomb Raider: 1939 Multiplayer Map Pack
  • Tomb Raider: Agency SPS 12
  • Tomb Raider: Anniversary
  • Tomb Raider: Aviatrix Skin
  • Tomb Raider: Caves and Cliffs Multiplayer Map Pack
  • Tomb Raider: Demolition Skin
  • Tomb Raider: Fisherman
  • Tomb Raider: Guerilla Skin
  • Tomb Raider: Hunter Skin
  • Tomb Raider: HX AP-15
  • Tomb Raider: JAGD P22G
  • Tomb Raider: Legend
  • Tomb Raider: M590 12ga
  • Tomb Raider: Mountaineer Skin
  • Tomb Raider: Scavenger Bandit
  • Tomb Raider: Scavenger Executioner
  • Tomb Raider: Scavenger Scout
  • Tomb Raider: Shanty Town
  • Tomb Raider: Shipwrecked Multiplayer Map Pack
  • Tomb Raider: Silverballer
  • Tomb Raider: STG 58 Elite
  • Tomb Raider: Sure-Shot Skin
  • Tomb Raider: Tomb of the Lost Adventurer
  • Tomb Raider: Underworld

For the sake of interest, purchasing all of these separately would run you $424.14. That’s a saving of $216.15 in case you didn’t have a calculator handy.

We suggest you head over to Steam right now and get this. Get it hard. Assuming you haven’t already gotten everything you want through previous Steam sales.

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Telltale’s Game Of Thrones Will Be Out Before 2015 http://egmr.net/2014/10/telltales-game-thrones-will-2015/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/telltales-game-thrones-will-2015/#comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 06:45:47 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161611 During the painfully terrible VGX Awards last year, there was brief reprieve from Joel McHale making life awful for Geoff Keighley whenever the screen cut to a shiny new trailer. […]

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During the painfully terrible VGX Awards last year, there was brief reprieve from Joel McHale making life awful for Geoff Keighley whenever the screen cut to a shiny new trailer. Wait, did I just express pity for Geoff Keighley? Damn.

Anyway, the showstopper was No Man’s Sky by a country mile but in second and third were no doubt Telltale Games’ Tales from the Borderlands and Game of Thrones.

We’ve heard equally little about both titles but while it makes sense to not overload and confuse people with two different Borderlands games at the same time (since the Pre-sequel just released) the silence on Game of Thrones has been a little strange and is even stranger given some new information that has come out.

Now, Telltale doesn’t do much marketing. They’ll tease a screenshot on Twitter here and there but that’s about it. Even for their marquee franchise, The Walking Dead. You might expect a little more for Game of Thrones given how universally loved the series is.

The story here is that Game of Thrones will be releasing this year. Meanwhile, season 5 of the TV series continues filming.

Telltale has been hard at work on The Walking Dead Season 2 and the first season of The Wolf Among Us this year so it’s a wonder if they still manage to get Game of Thrones out before the year is up.

When asked about the expected release date for Game of Thrones, Telltale’s PR manager, Laura Perusco, confirmed that it is coming this year.

Earlier this year it was hinted at that Telltale’s Game of Thrones would focus on lesser houses such as Forrester.

It’s almost an inversion of what we’re used to whereby a game shows all there is that it has to offer and then gets delayed into 2014.

What are you hoping for from Telltale’s take on Game of Thrones?

Before we go, here’s Emma Watson on the Iron Thrones because reasons:
games-of-thrones-emma-watson

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Watch A Feature-Length Film’s Worth Of Dragon Age: Inquisition http://egmr.net/2014/10/watch-feature-length-films-worth-dragon-age-inquisition/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/watch-feature-length-films-worth-dragon-age-inquisition/#comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 06:00:44 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161610 If you add up all the gameplay footage that has been shown of Dragon Age: Inquisition thus far it amounts to a few hours. People finished MGS V: Ground Zeroes […]

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If you add up all the gameplay footage that has been shown of Dragon Age: Inquisition thus far it amounts to a few hours. People finished MGS V: Ground Zeroes in less time. Now there’s even more footage to sink your teeth into. Instead of wasting 105 minutes on some silly movie like TMNT, waste your time watching too much Inquisition for your own good. Hell, if we knew there was going to be this much footage we wouldn’t have wasted our time on a preview.

All this footage comes courtesy of the good people at Open World Games.

Up top we have close to an hour of PC gameplay which showcases, among other things, the War Table, character customisation, looting, the Tactical Camera, Talent Trees, Rifts and maybe a dragon or two.

If you’ll follow me down here, there’s more. If you’re just coming back from watching the above video then you may want to watch this next one quickly before you realise that yours legs are numb and your cat is starving.

This video is a smidgen shorter but shows off spells, potions, crafting, mounts and maybe a dragon or two.

Is that enough Inquisition to sate you until launch? We certainly hope so.

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Fresh Quantum Break Footage Shows Us What The World Looks Like To The Flash http://egmr.net/2014/10/fresh-quantum-break-footage-shows-us-world-looks-like-flash/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/fresh-quantum-break-footage-shows-us-world-looks-like-flash/#comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 06:45:55 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161524 Quantum Break is one of Microsoft’s wild cards in terms of ambition. It’s not the riskiest video game concept – it actually looks a lot like Max Payne but with […]

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Quantum Break is one of Microsoft’s wild cards in terms of ambition. It’s not the riskiest video game concept – it actually looks a lot like Max Payne but with a different excuse behind bullet-time – however, it is a risk in trying to create a high-budget game that will tie into a high-budget TV series with the two intertwining over each other.

We haven’t really seen anything of the TV series yet but I’m just going to put it out there, they could learn from the way effects have been done in The Flash.

Anyway, the premise is all very Max Payne-ey. Protagonist who wears a jacket, evil corporation, gunfights and fractures/breaks in time. Okay, that last one is new.

Back in August we got our first real look at Quantum Break in action and while I had my doubts, it did a good job of impressing the rest of the EGMR denizens.

There was some concern that the closing of Microsoft’s TV division, Xbox Entertainment Studios, spelled trouble for Quantum Break but the TV side of the equation is still intact for now.

The video up top shows off about eight fresh minutes of gameplay in addition to the eight we got at Gamescom. It also feature commentary from Remedy’s Sam Lake aka the guy they modeled Max Payne after.

Quantum Break is due out on Xbox One next year and certainly has my interest.

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Get The Lowdown On PS4’s Share Play Ahead Of The Big Update 2.00 http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-lowdown-ps4s-share-play-ahead-big-update-2-00/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-lowdown-ps4s-share-play-ahead-big-update-2-00/#comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 06:00:12 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161523 Back when the PS4 was revealed there were a number of promised features that we’ve had to wait for. Welcome to next-gen, folks; eventually you’ll get the complete console experience […]

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Back when the PS4 was revealed there were a number of promised features that we’ve had to wait for. Welcome to next-gen, folks; eventually you’ll get the complete console experience that you were promised. Just not right now. It’s like console early access.

One of those major touted features was Share Play, the ability for friends to essentially share a “virtual couch” as Sony describes it.

This allows the player to create a local co-op session with a friend for an hour at a time. Even if they don’t own the game, they can hop in.

Signs of this are already evident in Sony’s failed social experiment, DriveClub, where players automatically create a session as soon as they go online and other friends are then free to join or invite you to their session. So Sony made sure the groundwork was laid for when Share Play finally gets unleashed upon the world.

So what can your pal (person, not region) do once they are in your session? If they’re the voyeuristic type then they could simply view a stream of what’s on your screen. For slightly more involved friends, they can take over your game and help you with that one really hard boss fight (just pray they don’t notice you’re playing on easy). Furthermore is the option to have a friend jump in if the game supports local multiplayer.

Here’s a rundown of what Share Play entails straight from the pony’s mouth:

Share Screen: Share your screen with a friend, allowing them to spectate. This is ideal for PS4 owners that want to watch their friends play a game and provide helpful tips. PlayStation Plus is not required to use this.

Hand over my controller: Pass your controller to a friend, virtually, and watch them play. Your friend does not need to own, or even download the game, in order to use this feature. This is perfect for introducing your friends to new games. The host will need to be a PlayStation Plus member, but the guest does not.

Hand over another controller: If a game supports local multiplayer, you can have your friend join as player two. Again, the visitor does not need to own, or download the game in order to use this feature. Both players will need PlayStation Plus to use this feature.

While DriveClub seems primed and ready for Share Play, games such as LittleBigPlanet 3 and LEGO Batman 3 would certainly benefit from making extensive use of it.

Sony’s proof of concept for Share Play will come in the form of Far Cry 4 which has used the feature as a big marketing hook. The game just so happens to have co-op and be good fun to watch. It’s also the kind of game where there are many different ways to approach any situation so a fresh perspective could be great.

Far Cry 4 will release on PS4 with 10 Keys to Kyrat – invites to send out to 10 friends for them to join you in your game. It perpetuates the existing relationship Ubisoft and Sony seem to have. In previous years we’d see an hour of exclusive content for Ubisoft games on the Sony systems.

In the other corner, there have been rumblings of Family Sharing coming to Xbox One. Although initially planned, it had to be dropped when Microsoft did their infamous 180 degree about-face.

Share Play is coming with the PS4’s v2.00 update due out tomorrow. Quick! Run out and find some friends.

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Comments Of The Week — “Slow News Day?” http://egmr.net/2014/10/comments-week-ill-feel-things-loins/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/comments-week-ill-feel-things-loins/#comments Sun, 26 Oct 2014 13:00:05 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161380 It seems we’ve arrived at that point in the year again when exams plague the lives of students and people with real jobs stand and laugh while sipping on their own […]

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It seems we’ve arrived at that point in the year again when exams plague the lives of students and people with real jobs stand and laugh while sipping on their own tears. It’s a magical time. Soon the Christmas decorations will be going up; reminding us that it’s a commercial holiday above all else. God bless consumerism.

Also, how great is that one trailer? You know the one I’m talking about. Yes, that one.

Elsewhere, Ubisoft still thinks Unity (game, not engine) is a revelation to gaming and Jade Raymond is kind of just tired of their shit (maybe).

Also, we did that thing where we talk at each other.

Also: competition time! Wait. Double competition time!

Aside from that it was a pretty great week for comments. There was plenty of discussion and there was no shortage of names to fill this week’s list.

Spoilers: There will be no CotW next week because reasons. Squirrels may be involved. More as the news breaks.

  • Hulk Smash — You won’t like me when I’m angry! Always posts rage comments.
  • TRoLoLoL — Everything is a joke.
  • The Fanboy — BioWare is MINE!
  • Consolefag — PC Sucks, etc.
  • PCbitch — PC is legacy. PC is the best.
  • The Elitist — I’m better than all of you. Don’t type to me in that tone of voice.
  • The Spammer — Cannot. Help. Myself. Must. Comment.
  • Gandalf — Loves long walks on the beach and philosophy. Also, types long comments.
  • Most Valued Commenter (MVC) — Everyone takes interest in what you have to say.
  • The Parasite — It’s everywhere!
  • The Hater — Nothing is good enough!
  • Mr/Mrs Likable — Most Likes on a Comment.

There’s a great chance that we’ll add more as we go. Perhaps you have some ideas of labels we should add. Let us know in the comments.

Every week we’ll leave one title out. It’ll be your job to suggest a winner in the comments.

On the next page, you’ll be able to find the winners.

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The Last Of Us Gets Another Unnecessary Release http://egmr.net/2014/10/last-us-gets-another-unnecessary-release/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/last-us-gets-another-unnecessary-release/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 12:45:29 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161342 When you release the same game thrice in 18 months that’s when you know you’ve got a problem. We get it, Sony. You’re more proud of this game than a […]

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When you release the same game thrice in 18 months that’s when you know you’ve got a problem. We get it, Sony. You’re more proud of this game than a father when he sees his kid take his/her first steps. That’s great, we’re happy for you and I love The Last of Us. However, there’s a point where you step back and stop peddling the same game.

People have given Activision and EA shit about this for years with FIFA and CoD but Sony is really just releasing the same game. The again, if it’s popular why milk the franchise when you can milk the game itself, right?

So. That leads us to a GotY edition of The Last of Us coming this November. Earlier this year we got The Last of Us: Remastered on PS4. As with that version, the GotY version will come with all the add-on DLC including Left Behind.

The Last of Us: Game of the Year Edition will be out on PS3 on November 11.

Look out for The Last of Us: Game of the Year Edition: Remastered due out next June and The Last of Us: Game of the Year Edition: Demastered: Colon Overload due out next November for PS Vita.

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Get DriveClub Free With A PS4, Batteries Sold Separately http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-driveclub-free-ps4-batteries-sold-separately/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/get-driveclub-free-ps4-batteries-sold-separately/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 06:00:09 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161254 It’s funny because neither the PS4 nor the DualShock 4 controller takes replaceable batteries. They could but that would be weird. I mean, who even does that anymore? Earlier this […]

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It’s funny because neither the PS4 nor the DualShock 4 controller takes replaceable batteries. They could but that would be weird. I mean, who even does that anymore?

Earlier this week we gave our verdict on DriveClub and while it’s far from great, the game does pack a good amount of fun and it knows how to make a race entertaining.

As such, you wouldn’t go wrong for giving into a deal that gives you DriveClub absolutely free of charge. Unless you have some phobia of cars and high speed racing because your wife died in a illegal underground street drift and your son is currently being held hostage by the Yakuza until you pay up the money your wife owed them.

That got weird pretty quickly.

So. Assuming, your don’t have a similar aversion you should be pretty interested in this next bit.

For a limited time only and at participating retailers, you can get your hands on a PS4 for R6299.00 and they’ll throw in a free copy of DriveClub.

You have until November 2nd. Go!

Actually, wait. Come back here for a minute, kid. Note that if you wish to play online you’re going to need a PS Plus subscription (valued at over R700) and DriveClub is technically free on PS Plus this month anyway for subscribers. So is it really an awesome deal?

Are you sure you don’t want an Xbox One instead? Take a minute to think about it.

Be smart, stay in school, don’t do drugs.

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Dissecting That Awesome Avengers 2: Age Of Ultron Trailer http://egmr.net/2014/10/dissecting-awesome-avengers-2-age-ultron-trailer/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/dissecting-awesome-avengers-2-age-ultron-trailer/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 15:00:16 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=161218 By now you’ve watched the video that everyone’s talking about, right? No, not this one. I’m talking about the first trailer for Avengers 2: Age of Ultron. A trailer soaked […]

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By now you’ve watched the video that everyone’s talking about, right? No, not this one. I’m talking about the first trailer for Avengers 2: Age of Ultron. A trailer soaked in so many teases and visual nuggets that nerds the world over can’t stop watching it and suddenly have Pinocchio trending on Twitter.

Fables did it better, the whole creepy re-interpretation of classic Pinocchio thing, just saying.

As an aside: it’s so refreshing for a company to actually embrace a leak and go, “Fuck it, we may as well officially release the trailer anyway.” Kudos on not being like the opaque gaming industry, Marvel.

Anyway, not long after the trailer dropped there was a slew of articles, as there always is, pointing out all the little things you might have missed. These are great. Especially if you’re blind, although that raises some questions of its own.

Let’s take a slightly more considered approach to the trailer, shall we?

 

All Around the World

avengers 2
One of the first things you’ll notice is that the movie does not seem to exist solely in New York so for once the Big Apple can actually breathe a sigh of relief. At least, until the next Spider-Man film.

The trailer seems to hint at a few locations such as South Africa, somewhere in Asia and an old monastery/fortress. At one point you even see a French flag.

Perhaps this new film will have a far more global feel to it than the first which was about saving the world but only by saving New York because that’s how these things work, right?

 

Let’s Not Ignore Iron Man 3

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I liked Iron Man 3. There, I said it.

That aside, there could be some very interesting paths that lead from that movie to Avengers 2. In the wake of giving up being Iron Man forever Robert Downey Jr starts developing autonomous peacekeeping bots such as Ultron to keep active in the business of making the world a better and safer place. As these things go there’s always a bad seed because artificial intelligence is bad, mkay. Also, hubris. Walter White knows all about that word.

When Ultron goes rogue Robert is forced to don the Iron Man armour again. He’ll conveniently have some new armour lying around.

He also conveniently happens to have built a Hulkbuster armour because that was completely necessary. When Batman has contingency plans like that, The Justice League lose their shit. Granted, they find out about these contingency plans when a villain uses it against them. The question then is why did RDJ build a Hulkbuster armour and why is it so incredibly cool? Especially if he had no intentions of getting back into the suit himself.

That would be a plausible and viable way to tie the continuity together and make it seem organic when RDJ becomes Iron Man again. Especially after that heartfelt monologue at the close of Iron Man 3. You can’t go back on a heartfelt monologue, those things are like pinky promises.

 

Hulk… Scared?

avengers 2 egmr hulk
Admittedly the last point didn’t have much to do with the trailer but it laid some groundwork for this one. First off, what the hell freaked Bruce Banner out like that? He looks more troubled than Edward Norton in Fight Club and not in a cool way either.

One of the takeaways from the first Avengers film, aside from shawarma, was that Hulk had his shit together and was able to control himself and his transformations now.

A theory then is that something caused him to lose control and now he’s not only being restrained but is also more fearful of his inner demons than ever before.

 

Who’s Pulling the Strings?

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That then begs the questions of who exactly is in control here.

A big theme of the trailer is puppets, pulling strings, controlling others. Ultron has broken free from his strings so does he then perform a role-reversal and start pulling strings on the Avengers?

We see Thor getting up in RDJ’s face, we see Hulk squaring off against Iron Man, we also see nobody caring much about what Hawkeye is up to. More importantly, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch seem to be with Ultron at one point.

So is the 8-foot android manipulating the Avengers and turning them against each other? Not unlike a certain God of Mischief.

I really do hope these are central themes of the final film; control and embracing change. It could make for some interesting setups and would be an excellent prelude to any Civil War plans Kevin Feige has.

 

People Gon’ Die

egmr avengers 2 shield
This was a small issue with the first Avengers film. Nothing ever felt at stake because there was no sense of risk. Coulson aside, nobody died or ever really came close to having their life in danger. Not truly. There was also no sense that lives were being saved because we never saw lives being lost.

Granted, in Man of Steel we questioned whether lives were being saved because those lives weren’t safe anywhere as long as Superman was acting out his deepest DragonBall Z fantasies.

The darker tone of this trailer along with the grim imagery such as Cap’s broken shield suggest that there will be tragedy and a greater sense of threat and danger as a result.

Who knows? They might kill Hawkeye off to end any future contract disputes.

 

Odds and Ends and More String Jokes

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Before we go, there are just a few loose ends I’d like to address.

Why does Thor not have a cool new costume like everyone else? Does Asgard not have seasonal fashion?

Andy Serkis can be spotted briefly, though you may not recognise him in his human form. According to Dorkly he bares a striking resemblance to Ulysses Klaw, infamously attached to Black Panther so this may serve as our entry point into T’challa’s standalone film.

Let’s not forget that Scarlet Witch has the power to alter reality so she could easily serve up some deus ex machina at will. It would be a terrible creative decision but don’t rule it out. Also, she could make it so that this movie exists in the same universe as Buffy and Firefly, just sayin’.

Also, ballerinas?

 

In closing, let us not forget the Iron Man 3 trailers. Trailers are framed very specifically and edited together to generate the most intrigue, hype and speculation possible. As such, seemingly related things as per the trailer may be completely unrelated and the overall tone of the film may be completely different. For all we know, Bruce Banner looks the way he does because he’s tripping balls after a really intense trance party on the helicarrier.

What are your thoughts? What are your questions? What did we miss?

Meet us down in the comments.

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Titanfall’s Latest Update Turns It Into Gears Of War http://egmr.net/2014/10/titanfalls-latest-update-turns-gears-war/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/titanfalls-latest-update-turns-gears-war/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 06:45:30 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160866 Watch live video from titanfall on www.twitch.tv By that I mean people will actually play it and have fun and that there will be a lot more bromance. Kidding. Maybe. […]

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Watch live video from titanfall on www.twitch.tv

By that I mean people will actually play it and have fun and that there will be a lot more bromance. Kidding. Maybe. Don’t look at me like that.

Respawn promised that the November update for Titanfall would be the game’s biggest yet. It’s odd to think that this is one of the most hyped games of the year. It feels understated now, lacking in presence.

The update adds a four-player co-op mode titled “Frontier Defense.”

Players must work together in a team of four as they fight off waves of enemies, many of which will be completely new to Titanfall. Is this ringing a bell?

Players will have a few handy resources on tap, including their Titans and automatic gun turrets. All of the game’s competitive maps will be available for Horde Mode Frontier Defense.

Frontier Defense will arrive as part of Titanfall Content Update 8, which will also include ranked play, allowing players to “work your way through an increasingly challenging set of Tiers by out-performing other Pilots in battle”. Map Stars will be added, challenging players to reach a particular score during a match for the permanent bragging rights.

There will also be two new game modes. Deadly Ground is basically playing “the floor is lava” while Marked for Death Pro adds round-based games to the existing Marked for Death mode.

You can check out a few more details over on the official Titanfall blog and get a look at the new co-op mode in the Twitch stream above.

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Who Wants A GTA: San Andreas Remaster? http://egmr.net/2014/10/wants-gta-san-andreas-remaster/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/wants-gta-san-andreas-remaster/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 06:00:40 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160864 The simple answer is pretty much everybody who played the original game. GTA IV left a bad taste in people’s mouths even though many loved it but San Andreas is […]

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The simple answer is pretty much everybody who played the original game. GTA IV left a bad taste in people’s mouths even though many loved it but San Andreas is a unanimous darling.

Rumour has it that GTA: San Andreas will be coming to, at the very least, Xbox 360 to mark its tenth anniversary. Incidentally, there are couples who give their partners a “remaster” for a tenth anniversary. So this makes perfect sense.

The rumour stems from an Achievements list which has appeared online over at Xbox Achievements. Of course, this list is absolutely authentic and in no way easy to fabricate.

Rockstar has yet to officially announce anything but you’d think that anything of this sort would release coincidentally with the PS4, Xbox One versions of GTA V which will be out November 18.

Meanwhile, PC gamers are still holding a candle for Red Dead Redemption. For its tenth anniversary, children. For its tenth anniversary…

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Avengers 2 Trailer To Drop Next Week During Agents Of Shield http://egmr.net/2014/10/avengers-2-trailer-drop-next-week-agents-shield/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/avengers-2-trailer-drop-next-week-agents-shield/#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:45:48 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160787 Marvel and Warner Bros. have both outlined their trajectories for the next few years and that’s… I actually don’t know if it’s a good thing for WB given their fledgling […]

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Marvel and Warner Bros. have both outlined their trajectories for the next few years and that’s… I actually don’t know if it’s a good thing for WB given their fledgling connected universe but for Marvel it’s pretty damn solid. So let’s keep talking about Marvel.

To hell with Zack Snyder, he can dine with Leonidas there.

Up till now, we’ve heard bits and pieces of news regarding Avengers 2: Age of Ultron, we know who all the key players will be, we know the premise and we know it’s deviating from the comic arc.

Now, there were rumours that we’ll be getting a trailer for Avengers 2 attached to Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, also known as an AIDS patient and Catwoman take a ride on the Magic School Bus. It turns out that’s not happening.

Instead, and more appropriately, the first trailer for Joss Whedon’s second Avengers flick will drop during next week’s episode of Agents of Shield.

Now, this will be the first time a trailer for Avengers 2 is shown to the entire world. Previously, a trailer was shown on the last day of the New York Comic Con which supposedly resembled the footage shown at SDCC earlier this year.

According to Screenrant’s Hannah Shaw-Williams, this is how the SDCC trailer went down:

The trailer began with the familiar heroes (including War Machine) dressed in casual all hanging out at Avengers Tower and attempting to lift Thor’s hammer… without much success. Only Captain America is able to move it (slightly) and Thor’s concerned facial expression is priceless until he smiles when Rogers gives up. The exercise is interrupted by the appearance of Ultron, in a broken down, almost skeletal form with silver armor plating haphazardly forming his upper hunched torso. He proclaims, “There’s only one path to peace: your extinction.” The heroes all stand up facing him and Thor picks up his hammer.

This opening was followed by a montage of action shots of selected quotes from the movie, including Tony Stark saying that what happens in the movie is “the end of the path I started us on.” The trailer then offered a first look at the movie’s version of the Hulkbuster armor in action in multiple scenes, and Ultron delivered the excellent line “There are no strings on me.” The trailer concluded with Tony standing in a wasteland with the rest of the Avengers lying on the ground looking a lot worse for wear. Captain America’s shield was broken in half. They were seemingly dead.

This is a smart move from Marvel in the face of lower ratings for season 2 of Agents of Shield thus far. Even if, according to our in-house watchers of the series, season 2 has been absolutely great compared to the first season.

Expect this to become a norm for Agents of Shield I suppose. We’ll likely see a trailer for next year’s Ant-Man revealed there too.

Do you think we’ll get the same trailer shown at SDCC? Most probably but hopefully with a little extra thrown in.

I’m excited. Are you excited? I’m tempted to watch The Blacklist just to hear James Spader deliver intimidating and badass lines.

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Sunset Overdrive’s Launch Trailer Invites You To The Awesomepocalypse http://egmr.net/2014/10/sunset-overdrives-launch-trailer-invites-awesomepocalypse/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/sunset-overdrives-launch-trailer-invites-awesomepocalypse/#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:00:24 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160788 It’s like a regular apocalypse except more awesome which is a regular apocalypse if you have a certain perspective on things. That’s besides the point though. Sunset Overdrive is due […]

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It’s like a regular apocalypse except more awesome which is a regular apocalypse if you have a certain perspective on things. That’s besides the point though.

Sunset Overdrive is due out next week and it is undoubtedly one of the biggest Xbox One exclusives to release yet and certainly the one with the broadest appeal.

The trailer reminds us of the sprawling city, character customisation and enough explosions to bring Michael Bay to climax.

Let that image soak in for a minute. Go on. Picture it.

Now quickly, watch the launch trailer before you start feeling the need to burn American flags.

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Jade Raymond Says Goodbye To Ubisoft http://egmr.net/2014/10/jade-raymond-says-goodbye-ubisoft/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/jade-raymond-says-goodbye-ubisoft/#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 06:45:18 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160730 There are two names most prominently associated with the Assassin’s Creed franchise; Patrice Desilets and Jade Raymond. For all the deviations and stagnation the franchise has been subject to, those […]

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There are two names most prominently associated with the Assassin’s Creed franchise; Patrice Desilets and Jade Raymond. For all the deviations and stagnation the franchise has been subject to, those two were behind the game that set it all in motion.

Desilets’ relationship with Ubisoft since 2010 has been torrid to say the least. He left the company twice. Jade Raymond on the other hand has been with with the company for 10 years, overseeing the development of new games such as Watch Dogs, and a few years ago left the Montreal studio to head up Ubisoft’s Toronto studio which developed Splinter Cell: Blacklist.

Raymond is also on the Board of Directors of WIFT-T, an organization dedicated the advancement of women across film, television and screen-based industries.

Raymond will be replaced by Alexandre Parizeau, another founding member of Ubisoft Toronto.

Jade Raymond said in a statement: “I’ve spent 10 extraordinary years at Ubisoft, and I am proud to have been part of many of the best teams in the industry making truly remarkable games.

“This is one of the hardest decisions of my career, but the Toronto studio is strong and on a solid path. I’m confident that now is a good time for me to transition leadership of the studio to Alex and to pursue my other ambitions and new opportunities.

“Stay tuned for more on what’s next for me, but for now, I’d like to thank Ubisoft for its partnership through the years, and I wish them the very best in all their next endeavours.”

Ubisoft Montreal CEO, Yannis Mallet added: “On behalf of Ubisoft, I’d like to thank Jade for her leadership and many contributions over the years, and wish her all the best in her next adventures.

“The Toronto studio is a key part of the Ubisoft global network, and Alex has been at the heart of the studio’s growth over the years. He was the obvious choice to lead this talented group of people as they continue to develop amazing games.”

Jade Raymond has done some great work with Ubisoft and you’d imagine she’ll do just fine wherever she goes next. Perhaps she grew tired of the way Ubisoft does business or left for similar reasons to Patrice Desilets. Perhaps she’s going to team up with him to create games again.

Cue jokes about her being too hard to render and having to leave for parity.

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Whatever You Do, Don’t Call It Sunset Overhype http://egmr.net/2014/10/whatever-dont-call-sunset-overhype/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/whatever-dont-call-sunset-overhype/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:45:59 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160359 Up until now, Insomniac has done a sterling job of getting us all pretty excited about Sunset Overdrive, even those of us who can’t play it. That makes the latest […]

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Up until now, Insomniac has done a sterling job of getting us all pretty excited about Sunset Overdrive, even those of us who can’t play it. That makes the latest bit of news regarding Sunset Overdrive a little incongruous and rather strange.

We’ve seen overhyped games, Titanfall and Destiny alone have more hype behind them than anything else bar Half-Life 3. That’s media hype though that EA and Activision generated. They told us the game would be great. On the other hand, Sunset Overdrive has been hyped up but only as much as you might expect from a triple-A console exclusive. As such, nobody is really calling it overhyped nor has anybody even uttered the words, “the hype is real.”

So why is Insomniac telling people to not call it Sunset Overhype?

At present, reviewers and streamers have their hands on the review code of the game and are grinding (skateboards not RPGs) away.

Sunset Tv is a weekly in-game Tv show that will give players helpful tips and hints. That’s pretty cool. What does this week’s episode contain? Don’t call it Sunset Overhype.

Sunset Overreaction is due out next week on Xbox One. Don’t get excited.

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Review: DriveClub Is Fine On Four Wheels But Socially Inept http://egmr.net/2014/10/review-driveclub-fine-four-wheels-socially-inept/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/review-driveclub-fine-four-wheels-socially-inept/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 06:45:39 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158644 Visit review on site for scoring. DriveClub never held my interest all too much up until a few months ago. The reason being that aside from its social aspects and […]

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Visit review on site for scoring.


DriveClub never held my interest all too much up until a few months ago. The reason being that aside from its social aspects and features, which really can’t be shown but rather need to be felt, the game looked pretty textbook. Then Evolution started showing just how much effort they put into the actual game. The stuff under the social fluff is what really got me intrigued.

It turns out appreciating the non-social aspects of DriveClub may leverage whether you’ll enjoy the game or not. We’ll get to that in a little bit but first, some foreplay.

DriveClub takes a straightforward, no nonsense approach. You’re a driver, you start at the bottom, race, unlock cars, unlock new tiers, race some more, rinse, repeat. Each race has three challenges attached to it; finish in the top three, beat a laptime, reach a certain speed etc. Completing these challenges as well as good driving will earn you points which go towards leveling up. Each new level unlocks more paint schemes and cars.

This is one of the areas where DriveClub feels more than a little shallow. You don’t need to worry about some fictional currency or purchasing the cars you’ve unlocked. Once you unlock them they are in your garage. Once you have them there’s nothing to do besides drive and maybe come up with a new paint scheme (you can have up to four presets in addition to your club livery). Ryan Gosling had more to do in a movie that was actually called Drive.

The game has no customisation or upgrading. That’s fine, especially since the approach is for a bare bones racer but it stands as something which felt like it was lacking. Other games have gotten away with virtually no customisation because they don’t make it feel like you’re missing out. A little tuning would’ve gone a long way at least. When your content is so scant, it’s hard for it to not feel as though something is missing.

The list of cars on tap isn’t even extensive. There are perhaps less than 100 cars in the game. That said, the short list does serve as something of a boon. The game avoids the Gran Turismo trap of having exquisite high-end cars and awfully modeled low-end cars. Nor does it have cars that nobody wants to drive like the 2002 Honda Civic. I mean, seriously?

Instead, the lowest you’ll go is a Mini Cooper or Audi A1 and that’s great. All the cars look great, both in motion and standing still. They’re not quite realistic though, not entirely. There is a certain degree of surrealism at work to make the colours pop and the models ever so slightly idealised. That’s something I’m perfectly okay with because Need for Speed: Rivals taught us how to make great graphics look bad.

On the track is where DriveClub really shines.

There’s a vast array of tracks with four main events types – sprint, circuit, time-trial and drift. Because no game about cars is complete without drifting. Thanks, Tokyo Drift! The tracks feel marginally more alive than the mausoleums that Forza or GT have players speed through. The scenery in DriveClub is not only as lovely as the cars, it actually made me slow down and cruise just to see whether the environment still looked great when it wasn’t an incoherent blur. It turns out it really did. In addition to looking great, they also feature crowds that at least take pictures and release balloons. It’s hardly the most organic way to liven up a track but it’s a small difference that doesn’t go unnoticed.

Not that you’ll have time to stare down spectators. You’ll be too busy trying to advance a few places and then hold that position. Early on it’s ridiculously easy. As you progress to higher racing tiers the difficulty ramps up exponentially. You can’t wipeout in the first bend and proceed to win the race anymore. Your driving has to get sharper and more finessed the further you get into DriveClub’s singleplayer. Strangely enough, the lack of event variety never got to me because the conditions were constantly changing even though I was doing the same four event types over and over.

The AI is surprisingly competent and competitive, not to mention human. They make errors in turning, they hit the railing, wipeout, cause accidents and it means that even when you’re offline, the experience doesn’t feel dull.

Different weather conditions definitely make a difference to the way cars behave and handle and you’ll be hard-pressed not to notice different climates and weather given how gorgeous the game’s lighting and weather effects are. A shower of rain is stunning, taillights in the dark become arresting. DriveClub is a mighty handsome game. I’ll give Evolution that.

I don’t know if the tedious details of celestial mapping, weather patterns and more will really go noticed. One has to wonder whether the effort was really necessary. Perhaps it could’ve gone into ensuring the servers would be stable. Don’t worry. We will get there in due time, kids.

Up till this point I’ve been rather mixed regarding DriveClub. Let’s change that.

DriveClub is not an outright racing sim. It instead strives to strike that sweet balance between fun and realism and hits it just right. The cars don’t feel as real as you can get from other racers but they have something better – a feeling of speed and momentum. Rather than what a car actually feels like, these cars feel the way you want a car to feel. They’re responsive, can easily be thrown into a corner and don’t need to be driven with the sort of anal precision that defines a simulator. In short, you can have fun.

Yes, you will get penalised for cutting corners or colliding with other drivers and do need to drive “properly” in order to not only win a race but actually complete any of the challenges attached to a race. However, the game manages without making it feel as if you’re racing in shackles. Dicking about and driving like your other car is a Hi-Ace is not only possible but a lot of fun because the game enables it. You are welcome to drift around corners and use other drivers as a turning aid. I know I did. Cars still feel individual. Some won’t really drift, others respond horribly to cutting a corner over too much dirt and others still are just utter shit to drive (I’m looking at you, Maserati Gran Turismo). There are also cars that you will naturally find yourself choosing – this will always be the fastest car in each respective tier.

Evolution has been smart about this though. There are certain events that in addition to being limited to a specific tier also narrow your options down to a certain manufacturer or nationality. For example, there was one events that was German vs British cars. Well played, Evolution. As a result, you might reignite WWII because God knows things are getting boring in the Middle-East and Putin is just itching to grow a mustache but you’ll also likely drive just about every vehicle in the game.

If the main campaign doesn’t do it to you then the single challenge events certainly will.

I guess we’re going to have hard talk about the dangers of essentially putting half of your sparse racer behind online social features. DriveClub will serve as a cautionary for every other developer and publisher who wants a highly social gaming experience. Make sure your servers are up to snuff.

The reason this review is woefully overdue is because a) when we received our review copy I had no internet connection to speak of (thanks, Telkom) and b) once the game released it was a moot point anyway because the servers behind DriveClub are about as reliable and temperamental as, well… as me because I couldn’t even finish this sentence properly. They’re almost always down and when they aren’t, the servers are not only slow to process anything but also about as erratic and troubled as an emo lemming. The matchmaking system seems to operate on a mixture of good fortune and blood sacrifices, the social feature seem barely present and really, I was a bit underwhelmed. There are good ideas but they’re simply not being implemented well or haven’t been thought out fully. There are some changes that will be coming in the next few patches but it likely won’t be enough and it certainly can’t change the fact that right now the game is in pretty bad shape.

For a game that technically is a hashtag, #DriveClub doesn’t feel all too social. Let’s start with the big drawcard. You can create a club, design its logo and livery and then invite some friends to join your crew (are we allowed to say that or will Ubisoft throw a fit?). Then, by competing in multiplayer events against other clubs and players you not only earn XP for yourself but also for your club. Similar to your personal leveling, club leveling unlocks cars and paint schemes but also Accolades  which are kind of luck in-game Trophies except not that kind of trophy.

There are also challenges in which you  can compete asynchronously against other clubs or a specific club can challenge you or you can set your own challenge. DriveClub even has a newsfeed that tells you what everyone is up to. Friends (whether part of your club or not) can also join your multiplayer session and the two of you can roll together, taking on events. The problem is that DRiveClub does an atrocious job of telling you what the other person is doing. I tested it out with our own Marko and he took part in a race which I got kicked from due to server issues. We were sharing a multiplayer session and yet the game told me none of this. It was even more perplexing because he is a member of my club.

I tried to give the online components a chance but the servers weren’t quite so open-minded.

I got kicked offline before long due to the servers connection being lost, again.

There are good ideas here, make no mistake. I like what DriveClub is going for but it doesn’t feel like I’m in a world shared by other racers and their clubs. Hell, it didn’t even feel like I was sharing the game with my own club. The online experience is not only riddled with issues but it feels strangely devoid of social interaction.

I like the notion of registering for scheduled events rather than creating an event online, I like the newsfeed that updates you on the activity of others, I even like the challenge system but none of it works as well as it should nor does it go as far as it should. I should be able to interact with other clubs, create rivalries, alliances, unlock more than some silly badges, paint and more cars. It simply doesn’t feel as if Evolution took their ideas further than conception and rough outlining.

As such, any foray into DriveClub’s online is not only a frustrating endeavour but one without much payoff. You’re better off staying offline. Granted, that immediately makes the game worth only half its cost to you.

There is a lot of fun to be had on the track but it simply is not enough. DriveClub is incredibly fun, visually gorgeous and yet pitifully shallow. I love my racing games but I only have a cursory urge to return to the game. Partly because I have hardly anything better to play, partly because the challenge of the game is a little addictive and yet whenever I play it I feel as if I’m sampling a part of a bigger game.

On the track is where DriveClub is most competent. Evolution’s pedigree with Motorstorm shines through here with racing that favours fun and entertainment over grueling simulation. It’s that perfect mixture of the two that Shift 2 locked down which should appeal to both arcade and simulator fans. As soon as you step off the track DriveClub is a barren, lacking experience with nothing for players to do. Venturing online is frustrating and even emptier experience. DriveClub feels like a proof of concept rather than the next step in racing games. You simply cannot get away with a game this bare these days, certainly not at full price.

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There’s A Crowdfund With The Goal Of Harassing Valve Into Making Half-Life 3 http://egmr.net/2014/10/theres-crowdfund-goal-harassing-valve-making-half-life-3/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/theres-crowdfund-goal-harassing-valve-making-half-life-3/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 06:00:41 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160337 That’s not even clickbaiting, it’s the truth and by God, if a guy can crowdfund some potato salad then I guess these guys can get funding to effectively pester Valve […]

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That’s not even clickbaiting, it’s the truth and by God, if a guy can crowdfund some potato salad then I guess these guys can get funding to effectively pester Valve and its employees until they submit and make Half-Life 3. Or hit back and make Ricochet 2.

Now, most of the gaming world seems to want Half-Life 3 made, even people who haven’t played Half-Life just because it means the others will shut up about it. The game has reportedly been in development for years now but has yet to be officially revealed. As such, there’s an endless amount of pining on Steam, Reddit threads and most comment threads will have at least one “Half-Life 3 confirmed” joke. People get physically angry with Valve because Half-Life 3 isn’t happening. That’s entitlement, kids.

All that is pretty standard stuff, it’s commonplace in gaming but a $150 000 crowdfund with a structured plan on how to pester Valve into making the beloved Half-Life 3? That’s pretty novel but also pretty damn disturbing.

The elaborate Indiegogo campaign is started by Chris Salem and Kyle Mazzei, who work for marketing firm McKee Wallwork & Co., and claim the firm is supporting them in their endeavour.

This being Indiegogo means that whatever money these guys get will be theirs (something people often forget about Kickstarter). At time of writing this fund is up to $1042 with 62 funders and 29 days left to raise the rest. So what does that money get you? There are four tiers to this crazy thing and they’re not only pretty inventive but also so insane that I want to see this project take off:

$3,000 tier: The duo will start a Google AdWord campaign that targets all 300 employees of Valve, all saying “we want Half-Life 3″.

$9,000 tier: A truck with a giant billboard will “besiege” Valve HQ in Washington and show similar messages.

$45,000 tier: This is the most ridiculous one of them. The pair will hire Gabe Newell look-a-likes to also “besiege” Valve’s HQ, all wearing “we want Half-Life 3″ t-shirts.

$150,000 tier: And finally, the most extravagant one; a concert will be held in Seattle featuring “some of the biggest names in video game music” and invite Valve employees and fans.

If this thing takes off and they really do get to harass Valve employees, what makes them so sure that this won’t end with a lawsuit rather than a happy ending? It’ll probably end with a lawsuit. How do those things even work when the act in question was crowdfunded? Do you hold the backers liable too?

I have so many questions that would be answered if this a) happened and b) backfired spectacularly. Also, can we tack Portal 3 onto that as a stretch goal?

The real tragedy here is that this article doesn’t contain 333 words and that even if HL3 gets made, it will be a disappointment.

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Comments Of The Week — “I’ll Feel Things In Your Loins” http://egmr.net/2014/10/comments-week/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/comments-week/#comments Sun, 19 Oct 2014 13:00:41 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160305 Oh my, it’s been a rather long time since we last did this little dance. Fear not, I have feet and verily those feet will guide us. Granted, I have […]

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Oh my, it’s been a rather long time since we last did this little dance. Fear not, I have feet and verily those feet will guide us. Granted, I have no co-ordination so that’ll help.

Destiny has come and gone, #GamerGate is still fermenting and rAge happened. So we’ve got that going for us.

Catch up on all our rAge coverage here or ignore it because that’s been going on all week. Also, we spoke to Trebzz!

  • Hulk Smash — You won’t like me when I’m angry! Always posts rage comments.
  • TRoLoLoL — Everything is a joke.
  • The Fanboy — BioWare is MINE!
  • Consolefag — PC Sucks, etc.
  • PCbitch — PC is legacy. PC is the best.
  • The Elitist — I’m better than all of you. Don’t type to me in that tone of voice.
  • The Spammer — Cannot. Help. Myself. Must. Comment.
  • Gandalf — Loves long walks on the beach and philosophy. Also, types long comments.
  • Most Valued Commenter (MVC) — Everyone takes interest in what you have to say.
  • The Parasite — It’s everywhere!
  • The Hater — Nothing is good enough!
  • Mr/Mrs Likable — Most Likes on a Comment.

There’s a great chance that we’ll add more as we go. Perhaps you have some ideas of labels we should add. Let us know in the comments.

Every week we’ll leave one title out. It’ll be your job to suggest a winner in the comments.

On the next page, you’ll be able to find the winners.

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rAge 2014: We Find Out What Makes Project CARS Tick http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-find-makes-project-cars-tick/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-find-makes-project-cars-tick/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 07:30:50 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160261 Slightly Mad Studios has an interesting history coming from the Need for Speed franchise with Shift and then going independent. That typically means a scaling back and narrower focus but […]

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Slightly Mad Studios has an interesting history coming from the Need for Speed franchise with Shift and then going independent. That typically means a scaling back and narrower focus but instead, Slightly Mad has lived up to its name and thrown convention out of the window.

With Forza 5, DriveClub and more drifting around, there’s no shortage of quality racers out there but none look quite as incredibly polished, detailed and visceral as Project CARS.

At rAge this past weekend, Caveshen and I got a chance to sit down with Slightly Mad’s Steve Viljoen to pick his brain on how Project CARS came into being, how the team is approaching the game’s development and the level of detail and care that has gone into making this one of the most detailed and entertaining racers around.

Project CARS will be releasing on PS4, PC and Xbox One on November 21.

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rAge 2014: We Find Out Why You Should Be Interested In Evolve http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-find-interested-evolve/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-find-interested-evolve/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 06:45:14 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160257 Earlier this year you’d have people asking, “Have you seen Titanfall?” The only trouble is that nobody can find Titanfall anymore. Evolve promises to be just as big but hopefully […]

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Earlier this year you’d have people asking, “Have you seen Titanfall?”
The only trouble is that nobody can find Titanfall anymore.

Evolve promises to be just as big but hopefully won’t fade nearly as quickly. It was one of our standout games from rAge this past weekend. Bianca and I had the opportunity to sit down and find out from 2K Games PR manager, Erica Denning, just what makes Evolve so special. She should know, she’s played more of the game than pretty much anyone.

I mostly played third wheel here to the great connection between Erica and Bianca.

We found out how Evolve will keep players coming back for more, why being the monster is awesome and what’s still to be added to the game before it launches.

Evovle will be out next year, February 10 for PS4, Xbox One and PC.

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rAge 2014: We Chat To One Of The Producers On Assassin’s Creed: Unity http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-chat-one-producers-assassins-creed-unity/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-chat-one-producers-assassins-creed-unity/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 06:00:10 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160256 Every week, without fail, we invariably mention Assassin’s Creed in our infamous podcast. As such, you can imagine our excitement at the opportunity to speak to one of the developers […]

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Every week, without fail, we invariably mention Assassin’s Creed in our infamous podcast. As such, you can imagine our excitement at the opportunity to speak to one of the developers on Assassin’s Creed: Unity. This past weekend at rAge, Caveshen and I did just that as we sat down with Ubisoft Toronto’s Lesley Phord-Toy, one of the producers on Assassin’s Creed: Unity.

We discussed the direction Assassin’s Creed is heading in, why Unity is going back to basics and what we can expect from the new game. We also ask the important questions such as why are there no playable females, why is it in 900p and why does everyone have a British accent?

At one point Caveshen fangirls hard over Jade Raymond, it’s as glorious as it is awkward.

AC: unity is due out on November 13 for PS4, Xbox One and PC.

 

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Woah! Xbox One Might Have Outsold PS4 In September http://egmr.net/2014/10/woah-xbox-one-might-outsold-ps4-september/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/woah-xbox-one-might-outsold-ps4-september/#comments Thu, 16 Oct 2014 06:45:16 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=160043 Perhaps it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since the Xbox One has just launched in its last wave of regions (South Africa included). However, it is nice to […]

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Perhaps it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since the Xbox One has just launched in its last wave of regions (South Africa included). However, it is nice to see Microsoft’s hard work paying off in some respect and make no mistake, they’ve worked hard to get to where they are now. Remember the horrific state the Xbox One’s image was in last year?

The strange thing is that the Xbox hasn’t necessarily outsold the PS4 globally, these figures are for the US alone. The only grain of salt here, and it is a large one, is that the estimated figures come from industry analyst Michael Pachter. If you’re unfamiliar with Pachter’s work, he’s the gaming equivalent of a clairvoyant.

Nonetheless, let’s hear him out.

VentureBeat is reporting that analyst Michael Pachter is estimating that 325,000 Xbox One consoles were sold at retail in U.S. Well over PlayStation 4, which sold 250,000 consoles.

What does Pachter propose as the reason for this upturn in sales? Why, our favourite game in the whole wide world – Destiny!

“We expect Xbox One sales to exceed those of the PS4 for only the second month since launch,” said Pachter in a note to investors. “From Sept. 7 through [Sept.] 13, Microsoft offered a free game with the purchase of a new Xbox One at participating retailers,” he added

“I kind of think that free Destiny [on Xbox One] was better than [paying] for Destiny on PS4, that’s pretty compelling,” he told GamesBeat.

Of late, Sony has been pushing out a PS4 bundle with just about every game out there but Microsoft is hitting back with some bundles of its own in the form of Sunset Overdrive, AC: Unity and more.

If the Xbox One has indeed outsold the PS4 this will mark the first time the console has done so since the two launched last year. Are the tides turning for Microsoft or is this just an anomaly in Sony’s rampaging reign of this console generation?

Perhaps now they can stop pretending Kinect didn’t happen.

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rAge 2014: The Sights And Sounds As Well As A Few Funny Smells http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-sights-sounds-well-funny-smells/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-sights-sounds-well-funny-smells/#comments Thu, 16 Oct 2014 06:00:43 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=159947 This year’s rAge expo saw a large contingent of EGMR oddballs polluting the Dome with their presence. So what went down under the dome? The succinct answer is “stuff.” The […]

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This year’s rAge expo saw a large contingent of EGMR oddballs polluting the Dome with their presence. So what went down under the dome? The succinct answer is “stuff.”

The far less concise answer is a whole lot of gaming, a fair of boardgaming, some eSportsing, an overwhelming amount of cosplaying (which we’ve already covered) and a casual bit of groping. More on all that later though.

You’ll just have to accept that there aren’t any sounds or smells in this article because we haven’t figured out how to embed a scratch ‘n sniff card in WordPress yet.

All the big boys were out in full force. Megarom had a pretty great stand as always with Assassin’s Creed: Unity, Assassin’s Creed: Rogue, NBA 2K15, Borderlands: the Pre-sequel, Far Cry 4, The Crew, Skylanders, Evolve and… Destiny? Didn’t see that one coming.

Microsoft on the other had Unity (again), FIFA 15, Forza Horizon 2, Sunset Overdrive (so much fun), Dying Light, The Evil Within and Dance Central. It was a great stand if I do say so myself.

Conversely, Ster Kinekor’s stand was cramped and a little underwhelming. There was Singstar, LittleBigPlanet 3, The Order: 1886, LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham, Bloodborne, Dying Light, The Evil Within, Driveclub and Mortal Kombat. All of it was a little  underwhelming. Proving that quantity does not outweigh quality.

A big surprise this year was the Hot Toys stand filled with some of the most incredible figurines you could imagine.

There was also a good deal of eSports happening down below the main floor with League of Legends, Dota 2, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4 and Gran Turismo 6 going strong.

Speaking of teabagging, there was a inordinate amount of groping within the EGMR team.

I could go on but a picture says a thousand words so 177 pictures should say at least 420 words, right? Maths.

 

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Far Cry 4 Is About As Crazy As Kim Jong Un In A Pink Suit, Shouting Racial Slurs http://egmr.net/2014/10/far-cry-4-crazy-kim-jong-un-pink-suit-shouting-racial-slurs/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/far-cry-4-crazy-kim-jong-un-pink-suit-shouting-racial-slurs/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 10:30:46 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=159258 When your last game is best known for the definition of insanity you’d better have a pretty damn good idea of how to top it. Especially if the aim is […]

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When your last game is best known for the definition of insanity you’d better have a pretty damn good idea of how to top it. Especially if the aim is to go bigger, zanier and more over the top than ever before. There are a few ingredients which are needed for Far Cry 4 to outdo Far Cry 3 and most of them seem to be present.

First off, it needs to have “Far Cry” in the title.

Name: Far Cry 4
Genre: Bollywood
Players: 1-2
Multiplayer: Co-op
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360
Developers: Ubisoft Montreal
Publishers: Ubisoft
Release Date: 18 November 2014
Price: R525 (PC), R799 (PS4, Xbox One), R699 (PS3, Xbox 360)

Check.

Next up, you need a healthy dose of crazy in the narrative. Far Cry 3 was technically the story of Jason Brody but it really was a vehicle for the epically maniacal Vaas. Far Cry 4 looks to be going much the same way. Understated protagonist, flamboyantly scene-stealing antagonist, ludicrous hi-jinx; it’s all there. That leads me to…

 

Pagan Min, Madman of the Mountain


Every narrative worth its salt has at least one memorable character, someone that propels the story forward with an inherent locomotion merely by existing in a scene. Am I coming off a tad dramatic? Good. Pagan Min is all about theatricality and making a strong impression.

He wears his pink suits with confidence, will not hesitate to shiv you with a pen at the slightest provocation and monologues as well as any Bond villain could ever hope. All while retaining his dominion over the small Himalayan region of Kyrat. Sure it’s made up but so is your sense of self-worth.

At the other end of the scale we have Ajay Ghale, the man you’ll play most of the game as (more on that soon).

Hidden in the majestic Himalayas lies Kyrat, a country steeped in tradition and violence. You are Ajay Ghale. Traveling to Kyrat to fulfill your mother’s dying wish, you find yourself caught up in a civil war to overthrow the oppressive regime of dictator Pagan Min.

Explore and navigate this vast open world, where danger and unpredictability lurk around every corner. Here, every decision counts, and every second is a story. Welcome to Kyrat.

Helping him stay alive against the psychotic fashion statement that is Pagan Min will be the slightly mangy looking Hurk. He looks like a 3D-rendered version of the guy from Plants vs Zombies and flies a gyrocopter. That’s all you really need to know about him.

He’ll also service the role of co-op partner should you have friends who want to join you.

Did I mention that interwoven into the present-day story is a plotline focused on Shangri-La? That’s totally a thing in Far Cry 4. So it’s like Assassin’s Creed but on LSD. It’s got monsters, ancient powers, Bengal tigers and all the good stuff.

It’s all suitably madcap and should make for one hell of a rollercoaster ride. It’s enough to make even The Joker giddy with anticipation. Let’s not forget that this is a videogame though. That means it’s probably going to have something resembling gameplay.

That is, of course, assuming that Ubisoft didn’t jump the shark and make this one of those artsy games where you sort of just observe things and do some reading. Not surprisingly, the gameplay is very much what you’d expect. You might even say it’s the definition of insanity.

 

Mortars, Tigers and Other Lovely Instruments of Death


The gameplay in Far Cry 4 will be all to familiar if you’ve spent some time on the Rook Islands or shooting up a local high school. It’s basically what you got in Far Cry 3 but a little sharper, a little more refined and just a wee bit improved with some new weapons. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

As before, you can either go in stealthy or with your cock phallic symbols out.

Once again, you’re going to want to use the local wildlife to your advantage. Let them fight your battles for you and once that majestic tiger has cleared an outpost, skin him for all he’s worth. Why? For the glory of Satan! But also because you can use its skin to craft things.

Thus far we’ve got two macro elements ticked off.

That’s pretty useless if the game is set in New York, the placeholder location for any piece of entertainment ever made in the history of New York.

 

A Man, A Plan, A Mountain, This Isn’t A Palindrome

Instead of two dinky islands in the South Pacific, Far Cry 4 is set in the Himalayan region of Kyrat. Sure, there is lush greenery but there’s also plenty of snow and a healthy dose of verticality. This means that although Kyrat may not seem as big as The Rook Islands, it’s an illusion because with all the tiers and crannies, it’s really just as big a world to explore. The variety of environments will also diversify gameplay a little. High cliffs will necessitate your wingsuit while snowy slopes might call for a parka and a snowmobile. Hopefully a yeti too while we’re at it.

While it is by no means a visual or graphical masterpiece, Far Cry 4 has its own visual style which makes the environments look good even if they don’t technically look great (thanks, old-gen). That visual style and those visuals feel awfully a lot like what you got in far Cry 3 but marginally better.

With all this similarity, what is there to set it apart from its predecessor? A number, for starters. Other than that, not much although there are a few things. You may want to sit down for this next bit.

 

Racism, Hype and Jihadist Elephants


Compared to Assassin’s Creed: Unity, Far Cry 4 has had a more subdued pre-launch build-up but will likely impress just as much, if not more. That’s not a bad thing because Ubisoft’s marketing department is run by koalas.

This leads me onto the next point: racism. Don’t do racism, kids. It’s bad for your health. Being Canadian, Ubisoft Montreal’s employees were raised on this ideal and so did not make Far Cry 4 racist. Instead, people saw what looked like it could maybe be a Caucasian guy and suddenly the cover of Far Cry 4 was a poster for neo-colonialism.

Animals will play a bigger role in far Cry 4. Sadly, you can’t ride a tiger because that’s just a little too badass, even for this game. Instead, you’ll be able to ride elephants, send them on rampages and even rig them with explosives.

 

Suspected Selling Points
  • Pagan Min
  • Far Cry has a pedigree
  • Ubisoft rarely fails to deliver

 

Potential Pitfalls
  • The game may be too offbeat for some
  • It might be too much of the same

It’s a Far Cry  game and it doesn’t have strange South African accents. That’s one of saying it is almost definitely going to be a worthwhile game. At the very least it will be a good dollop of fun steeped in mayhem and madness. If you loved the last one then you likely won’t be giving this one a miss.

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You Will Survive In Far Cry 4 Because This Trailer Says So http://egmr.net/2014/10/will-survive-far-cry-4-trailer-says/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/will-survive-far-cry-4-trailer-says/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 07:30:16 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=159471 Kyrat is a fairly insane place. You’ve got a psychotic warlord pulling the strings, tigers roaming around, elephants willing to sacrifice their lives and a protagonist that went to this […]

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Kyrat is a fairly insane place. You’ve got a psychotic warlord pulling the strings, tigers roaming around, elephants willing to sacrifice their lives and a protagonist that went to this place because his mommy told him to? That all sounds pretty peculiar. Not as peculiar as a trailer set to a cover of Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive though.

Incidentally, that’s exactly what the trailer above is.

It shows off some of the crazy shit that Ajay will get up to in Far Cry 4. That’s the name of the protagonist, not my cousin.

The trailer certainly does a great job of making Kyrat look as depraved as we’d like to believe it is.

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The Evil Within Launch Trailer Just Screams “Nope” http://egmr.net/2014/10/evil-within-launch-trailer-just-screams-nope/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/evil-within-launch-trailer-just-screams-nope/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 06:45:51 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=159472 Do you know what the best part is about horror games? Nothing. They can be pretty immersive, tense and engrossing affairs but at the end of the day you’re pretty […]

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Do you know what the best part is about horror games? Nothing. They can be pretty immersive, tense and engrossing affairs but at the end of the day you’re pretty troubled if you get off on that sort of thing. Not that we judge.

The Evil Within is one of those games that just begs not to be played. Barbed wire and eyeballs don’t make for an attractive motif but you’ll play it anyway because the game looks pretty darn interesting. There’s also the fact that it’s made by Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami.

The Evil Within is out now so check out the launch trailer if you dare. I’ll be sitting here, not finishing Outlast because it freaked me the hell out.

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Toast On Jam: The Public Be Damned http://egmr.net/2014/10/toast-jam-people-damned/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/toast-jam-people-damned/#comments Tue, 14 Oct 2014 10:30:34 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158639 The Public is a fickle, ominous, amorphous entity both devastating and divisive. It has the power to change history and incite change. Power to the people and all that. That’s […]

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The Public is a fickle, ominous, amorphous entity both devastating and divisive. It has the power to change history and incite change. Power to the people and all that. That’s great, the people should have the power which they wield but just as the corrupt upper echelons of a hierarchy can abuse power, so too can “members of the public” comfortably do so from within a crowd; igniting those around them like a flame radiating from the center of a burning page.

Damnation certainly seems to be our theme this week.

Perhaps I’m a little disinterested in people and loud voices after a weekend filled with large crowds and a disregard for personal space. However, that doesn’t mean I have no regard for the public, their actions and their opinions. There are great examples of the public inciting great change.

I’m not going to muddle my opinion with political examples but you can likely think of more than a few. Okay, maybe just one – the French Revolution.

However, recently it has become far too commonplace for “public opinion” to be representative of the voices of a minority. A very vocal, very loud minority. In some cases it’s not even that, it’s a minority chosen and then exhibited as the general public.

To put it into perspective, members of the public are not the only ones who allow the voices of the few to be construed as the voices of the many. We all know what focus testing is and what results from it. Focus testing showed that players want a bolt-on multiplayer component for added value or this generic boxart over something more creative. It’s a poor way to validate any decision.

Similarly, casting your opinions out like a fishing lure will certainly get a few nibbles but that doesn’t mean you suddenly have the power to go after sharks.

You are entitled to an opinion, you have the right to voice your opinion as you see fit. You are not however, allowed to act like an entitled, self-righteous, unthinking asshat. The internet makes it easier to voice your opinions than ever and you can very easily make sure that the right people see it.54567040

For better or worse, it’s this kind of public opinion and outcry from a loud minority that helped reshape the Xbox One into what it is now. Which is to say, arguably your best option as console gaming goes. People complained about Kinect being bundled with it, they complained about console DRM, they complained about the online store, they complained about Games with Gold, they complained about Don Mattrick and, well… you see where this is going.

That’s the bright side of what people can do within the sphere of gaming.

However, the planting of a small seed can grow a thorny forest in the right soil and with the right amount of sunlight. Edison led people to believe that Tesla was a madman whose inventions were dangerous and that DC was the way forward. He effectively set power generation back by a couple of decades. Maybe it didn’t help that Tesla was actually a little crazy and not a big people person. It’s an extreme example, one with only loose contextual relevance here but one which I feel categorically shows what can happen when public opinion serves as a hindrance.

Just this year alone, a highly vocal minority caused a whirlwind with #GamerGate and #NotYourShield (the former of which is bafflingly still ongoing) and because the vast majority of gamers are silent, the only sounds to be heard are the gnashing of teeth and incoherent ranting.

By next year there will be some other cause worth throwing your hashtags behind.

By nature, public opinion is highly mutable, volatile and subject to change. More often than not, it stems from misinformation or misdirection. If someone shouts “onions are delicious” into your ears enough times, eventually the thought will scratch at your brain and you may begin to doubt you dislike for onions. Suddenly you’re buying onions.

Most recently, people were up in arms about Ubisoft’s poorly constructed statements regarding the resolution and framerate that AC: Unity will be running at. Now, there are real issues to find fault with here but everybody piling their grievances into a hashtag missed the point. Why? Because the most vocal people seem to rant first, think later. Ironically, the same order of actions that got the ball rolling in Ferguson.

The reality of things is that what “the public” deems relevant right now won’t be relevant in a few months, most of the time. Even when it is, there’s a vast chasm between strongly worded incendiary opinions and actions. A lot of noise just makes life online disruptive for the rest of us. A little peace and quiet would be nice nice once in a while.

Not everything needs to become an issue and not everything warrants raising your voice.

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Ubisoft announced that AC: Unity would be locked at 30fps and 900p. That’s fine. They’ve gone back on their word, they’ve failed to deliver on a promise and they’ve stumbled over their own words more times than I can count but they have not ruined the game. Watch Dogs had the same thing and a graphical downgrade and suddenly it looked like utter shit according to the public.

It simply didn’t match expectations but neither game will be or was ruined by a visual drop.

Watch Dogs still went on to smash sales records (until Destiny came along).

There was no reason for #PS4NoParity to become a thing or people to bitch and whine about how Ubisoft have ruined the game and subsequently cancel their pre-orders for Unity or swear off future Ubisoft games. On that note, by all means cancel your pre-orders but because pre-order culture is terrible rather than because Ubisoft made you sad.

What I’m getting at is that public opinion, strong reactions and outcries are transient. They’re explosive, furtive and fueled by a powerful minority but a minority nonetheless.

By all means, complaining about the Mass Effect 3 ending, the lack of playable females in Unity and the way Ninja Theory handled fans with the DmC reboot is justified. However, the people looking for actual discussion and with legitimate criticism seem to be drowned out by the court jesters with the biggest megaphone and the least sense. In this way we get mob mentalities arising.

People are silly, they can be moulded to your will and with the right sales pitch it’s not that hard. This seems to be where GamerGaters and serial aggressive whiners draw their strength from. It’s also why they won’t go away.

Playing devil’s advocate again (as I tend to do here), I feel that many developers feel pressure from above with publishers imposing certain demands upon them. This is why we see so many breaking free and heading into the world of indie development. It’s no help if they’re receiving fire from below as well in the form of dissenting voices who get uppity about every little thing. If a developer oversteps or transgresses then as the end-users and the people these games are made for we have a right to complain. However, the current mentality is to complain about everything. Everything is an issue and so all that is heard is a wash of white noise instead of hearing something when there is genuinely an issue at hand.

Ubisoft’s nightmarishly bad PR aside, remember the furore surrounding how racist Far Cry 4 was with its depiction of neo-colonialism? That arose purely from kneejerk reactions from people looking for a fight with insufficient information behind their anger.

More often than not, this is the voice of the people and it adds to the toxicity of the video game industry. Ultimately, developers are no doubt apprehensive of invoking the guile of this gruesome minority and it makes for an even more volatile environment to release games into than usual.

It make the entire gaming ecosystem more volatile and serves only to the detriment of gamers and game developers alike. There is a civil way to do things and this is not it.

Frankly, it’s exhausting to follow an industry where there is never equilibrium and a very loud contingent of somebodies is always making a racket. If this is what “the public” stands for and what “the public” represents then damn them. The gaming industry is bad enough without that added bile and toxicity.

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rAge 2014: Batman: Arkham Knight Looks To Be Running Out Of Ideas http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-batman-arkham-knight-looks-running-ideas/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-batman-arkham-knight-looks-running-ideas/#comments Tue, 14 Oct 2014 07:30:45 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158872 It was a little disheartening to not have any playable version of Batman: Arkham Knight on-hand at rAge this past weekend but to compensate for it there was a screening […]

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It was a little disheartening to not have any playable version of Batman: Arkham Knight on-hand at rAge this past weekend but to compensate for it there was a screening of a playthrough with a narration script penned by Adam West’s cat. That’s the way it sounded anyway.

It was good enough for me, I just wanted to see the game in action.

Arkham Knight looks suitably gorgeous, that’s the first thing I noticed in the darkened little hospitality suite we found ourselves in. Batman looks pretty damn next-gen and everything from the buildings to the Batmobile to the thugs whose knees you’ll break have a delightful amount of detail poured into them.

The demo began with a brief cutscene where someone tells another someone something about some stuff and people.

We then got to see Batman glide down from on high and crash in through a skylight to be greeted by a few thugs. What followed was pretty ho-hum. Punch, kick, counter, takedown, rinse, repeat, don’t forget to floss. It’s familiar territory of the best kind because few combat systems will ever be as visceral and finely tuned as that of the Arkham games.

The context is largely unimportant but suffice to say, the Arkham Knight (villain, not game) was pulling the strings in this particular battle.

The biggest focus of the demo was showing off that slick new Batmobile that we couldn’t stop ogling even if we tried. It’s a magnificent specimen. Capable of using its own grappling hook to tear down walls, lift up sections of road to form ramps and more.

It’s got two modes. In battle mode the wheels spread out wider for stability and Batman has much finer control over it. In pursuit mode you’re ready for a drag race against Dominic Turetto and all 17 of his gears. We got to see the Batmobile engage some enemy drone tanks which looked rather derivative if a little novel because this was batman doing it. It does feel a little odd to be controlling a high-powered gun with batman but it only fires suppression rounds… and sometimes explosives.

Aside from combat, the Batmobile allows Batman to reach new areas with a little bit of its platforming. If Batman is in a tight spot, he can of course simply summon the Batmobile to his current location.

The way the Batmobile’s momentum propels Batman upon ejection is a sight to behold though. Such a glorious sight to behold.

We then got to see Batman take on a few more goon atop a crane platform. Again, nothing new here except for the new enemy type – the combat expert – which looks to behave very similarly to Arkham Origins’ martial artists so again, nothing new really.

Finally, we got some facetime with Arkham Knight who walks and talks like a common thug rather than an interesting villain. This might just further rumblings o him being Jason Todd. His dialogue, as well as Batman’s, feels a little more wooden than before and stilted even.

Overall, Arkham Knight still has me hooked and I don’t doubt that it will be a good game but there are some causes for concern surrounding the addition of derivative gameplay to spice up the existing gameplay. The story remains an enigma (heh) but the characterisation leaves a bit to be desired as does the dialogue.

Ultimately, I was less than impressed with what I saw of Arkham Knight at rAge despite it being far from bad.

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Sunset Overdrive Brings Out Cowboy Hats And Crazy In These Gameplay Videos http://egmr.net/2014/10/sunset-overdrive-brings-cowboys-hats-crazy-gameplay-videos/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/sunset-overdrive-brings-cowboys-hats-crazy-gameplay-videos/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 15:00:58 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158767 We know that Sunset Overdrive is a pretty zany little monster. That’s just the facts. After getting some time with the game at rAge this past weekend I can confirm […]

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We know that Sunset Overdrive is a pretty zany little monster. That’s just the facts. After getting some time with the game at rAge this past weekend I can confirm that the game is indeed as frenetic as a manic puppy. Like a shark, if your character stops moving they’ll probably die.

With that in mind, here are two new gameplay videos ahead of the game’s release later this month.

The videos were posted by AllGamesBeta. The top one shows off what happens when you involve friends in the fray and the one below makes excellent use of a Stetson.

Man, this game is just begging to be played.

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DriveClub’s Launch Issues Persist http://egmr.net/2014/10/driveclubs-launch-issues-persist/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/driveclubs-launch-issues-persist/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 06:45:06 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158745 There are launch issues and then there’s DriveClub’s absolute lack of online servers. Oh, the servers are there but good luck trying to get on them for that super social […]

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There are launch issues and then there’s DriveClub’s absolute lack of online servers. Oh, the servers are there but good luck trying to get on them for that super social experience with your crew (are we allowed to say that?).

DriveClub launched worldwide on Wednesday and has since been plagued by server issues. Thus making it impossible to play the game the way Evolution and Sony intended.

Evolution Studios is hard at work trying to remedy the connectivity issues that have plagued the game and Game Director Paul Rustchynsky took to Twitter to provide further information and address the concerns:

“We have been working all weekend & we are making progress but its proving to be a challenging issue to address.

We’ve got the team working extremely hard trying to address the problems, we understand just how serious this is.”

Rustchynsky also clarified that the hardware side of things is solid and the issues lay firmly in server code.

Other affected games include Destiny (not that anybody noticed) and NBA 2K15

There’s still no ETA on when the PS Plus edition will land and we’re already almost halfway through the month.

Interestingly, Rustchynsky mentioned that the studio could look into adding a “prestige” style playthrough of the Tour after completing it, featuring higher difficulty. Evolution is also looking to rebalance collision penalties received when the AI bumps into the player.

Finally, he mentioned that an update on the availability of Photo Mode will come soon, and that he hopes that the audio profile for Sony’s wireless headset will be available in short order as well, as the studio provided all the necessary data.

DriveClub received a year-long delay for what exactly?

This is what happens when you put hashtags into your game title.

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rAge 2014: Far Cry 4 Is A Familiar Dose Of Madness http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-far-cry-4-familiar-dose-madness/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/rage-2014-far-cry-4-familiar-dose-madness/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 06:00:46 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158637 Removed from the shackles of context and with a less than keen eye, you might just mistake Far Cry 4 for its older brother. Until the moment you walk up […]

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Removed from the shackles of context and with a less than keen eye, you might just mistake Far Cry 4 for its older brother. Until the moment you walk up to an elephant and are presented with the option to mount it. No! Not like that. You perverts.

There’s a different button for that.

As with Far Cry 3, there were two ways to approach this particular outpost seizure. You can either go in silent and stealthy or charge in like a rampaging elephant. Oops. Did I say “like?” I meant “on.”

Now, I got to try out both approaches and found myself ticking a checklist of things that the previous Far Cry had going for it. Stealth is rewarding. Guns blazing is also catered for though it depends on your playstyle. Finally, animals are your friend when it comes to clearing out enemies.

As with in Far Cry 3, you’ll be clearing out a lot of enemy outposts over the course of the game so this is as good a yardstick as any by which to get a feel for Far Cry 4.

One of the first things you’ll notice is that the game is not the prettiest, certainly not Unity-level stunning, but it looks good enough in its own way and is of course held back by the old consoles.

The next thing is that the game controls exactly as Far Cry 3 did which is great for fans but it also feels very much like a slightly streamlined and tweaked version of Far Cry 3 in terms of gameplay – shooting and movement. If it ain’t broke…

Most crucially though, the game seems to retain that feeling of being able to do whatever the hell you want. The demo on offer had a simple objective of taking control of the outpost. That’s it.

How you did that was up to you. I spent a good few minutes outside the entrance to the fortress that served as the outpost and swam around elephants, hunted cats and just generally did whatever randomly firing synapses told me to.

On my semi-successful run, this was followed by sneaking around to the back, climbing up a wall and finding a good vantage point from which to eliminate enemies using my point and kill crossbow and sniper rifle. There was a distinct satisfaction in each body that fell. Though this was short-lived by the somewhat dim AI making a stealthy approach a little too easy. Until I got noticed, failed to prevent reinforcements from being called and got absolutely devastated by an attack helicopter.

All that said, the game’s familiarity was a boon as I instantly felt comfortable with it and had a blast in those 15 minutes.

The ultimate takeaway from my extremely brief time with Far Cry 4 is that Kyrat needs to give me more varied environments to distinguish itself from the Rook Islands. Far Cry 4 needs to do more with its gameplay to set itself apart from its predecessor, especially given how similar it looks and feels based on that demo.

In fact, this was extremely similar to the demo for Far Cry 3 on offer at rAge two years ago.

There will be tons of fun to be had but I worry that too much in common with Far Cry 3 will be to the game’s benefit in some respects but its detriment overall.

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What’s This About An X-Men TV Series? http://egmr.net/2014/10/whats-x-men-tv-series/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/whats-x-men-tv-series/#comments Thu, 09 Oct 2014 06:45:36 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158509 You know, not everything needs to be serialised. Murder, as an example, is far better when it’s unique, individual and not mass-produced. Speaking of murder, have you been watching Gotham? […]

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You know, not everything needs to be serialised. Murder, as an example, is far better when it’s unique, individual and not mass-produced. Speaking of murder, have you been watching Gotham? My answer to that questions may turn into a no in the coming weeks but it is an interesting time to have an interest in comics. Comic book movies are already powerhouses on the silverscreen but now we’re finding more and more comics getting small screen adaptations.

Marvel has yet to truly kick off their plans with Daredevil, The Defenders and more. For the time-being all they’ve got is Agents of Shield.

Meanwhile DC is churning them out with Arrow, Flash, Constantine and Gotham.

Fox, on the other hand, has been quiet. Letting Days of Future Past show that they’re ready to stop ruining the franchises they have the rights to. Riding on that success are mutterings of an X-Men TV series.

Rumours suggest the studio is in “deep development” on a live-action X-Men Tv series which fits with X-Men writer/producer Simon Kinberg’s previous statement that “the serialized format of comic books is better suited for TV.”

Another report claimed that instead of a movie, this series would be where the spin-off X-Factor might get some attention. Another TV show called X-Factor does not sit well with me.

According to a new report by Film Divider, the main speed bump for the X-Men live action TV series is the decision about who to cast in it, since it will take place in the same universe as the X-Men movies and will “absolutely [be] designed to permit crossover with the X-movies.”

The major problem here? Go with minor characters and the show has no draw. Go with major characters and you run the risk of them “burning up” outside of the movie franchise. The solution then is to cast characters that are somewhere in between but have gained popularity. Characters such as Quicksilver.

Film Divider also reports that the idea of using Jamie Madrox AKA Multiple Man (who was played by Eric Dane in X-Men: The Last Stand) has been “kicked around seriously” and “seems to be more than just a possibility.” That might sound vague, but if the series is going to be based on David’s run of the X-Factor series then both Multiple Man and Quicksilver would likely be part of the line-up, along with Polaris, Havok and several others.

I think there’s a lot of depth and breadth in the X-Men universe to be explored and certainly, spin-offs such as X-Factor or X-Force (even better) could be fantastic. A series would also allow Fox to experiment around with various characters and ideas. Certainly more so than the films.

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Phil Spencer Hints At Some Old Classics Returning To Xbox http://egmr.net/2014/10/phil-spencer-hints-old-classics-returning-xbox/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/phil-spencer-hints-old-classics-returning-xbox/#comments Thu, 09 Oct 2014 06:00:33 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158508 Could it be? Could Crash Bandicoot finally be making a return… but on Xbox? Probably not. Although Insomniac is working with Microsoft on Sunset Overdrive so there’s always Spyro. But […]

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Could it be? Could Crash Bandicoot finally be making a return… but on Xbox?

Probably not. Although Insomniac is working with Microsoft on Sunset Overdrive so there’s always Spyro. But probably not.

During an interview on The Inner Circle podcast, Xbox boss Phil Spencer was given a list of old franchises that people would love to see more of: Halo Wars, Alan Wake, MechAssault, Conker’s Bad Fur Day, Blinx the Time Sweeper, Fusion Frenzy, Banjo Kazooie, Kameo, High Heat Baseball, Otogi, Knights of The Old Republic and Shenmue.

That’s a treasure trove of nostalgia and quality if ever there was such a thing. Spencer was then asked if there was a chance we’d ever see any of the above again and on Xbox One. Rather than being candid, Spencer opted to be a bit of a tease.

“There are a couple games on that list that we’re doing some work on. I’ll just say that.

People should know that we listen to feedback, we have ideas, and there are franchises in the past we thing would be great to come again.”

Spencer went on to say that unlike some of his predecessors, he wants to invest in Microsoft-owned franchises. Like Titanfall! Fair enough, it was before his time. His reasoning? It doesn’t just make business sense, it makes Nintendo sense.

Spencer did clarify that he can only really speak of franchises that Microsoft has a hand in and owns so don’t get your hopes up for a new KotoR, kids.

For those that love Rare, Spencer also mentioned that the last time he’s been at the studio he encouraged them to “Make an iconic Rare game that centers on what Rare’s always been about,” and while he still hasn’t seen it yet, it’s likely that we’ll see something like that coming from the studio.

With regards to the games coming in the next two years, Spencer used one word to describe the torrent: “crazy.”

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Shadow Of Mordor Is Doing The Darnedest Things With Its Promotion Methods http://egmr.net/2014/10/shadow-mordor-darnedest-things-promotion-methods/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/shadow-mordor-darnedest-things-promotion-methods/#comments Wed, 08 Oct 2014 06:45:12 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158425 Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor doesn’t have Lord of the Rings in the title for a reason and that’s fine. It makes sense even. However, things go awry, very awry in […]

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Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor doesn’t have Lord of the Rings in the title for a reason and that’s fine. It makes sense even. However, things go awry, very awry in fact, when that filters through to the way the game is allowed to be promoted via YouTube and streams.

Allow me to elaborate.

While the game itself may be a testament to minimal hype, maximum reward; Warner Bros is doing some suspect things behind the scenes.

Heavy restrictions have been placed on YouTubers looking to stream and share the game. An example includes requesting that commentators requiring pre-release code would provide sponsored content for the game — all positive content, no less. The practises are coming from WB marketing partner Plaid Social.

TotalBiscuit was reportedly the one to bring this to light and Jim Sterling even did a Jimquisition specifically on the matter. The most baffling part? People love Shadow of Mordor, they’ll have mostly positive things to say anyway.

Actually no, that’s not even the weirdest part. It gets more perplexing.

Some of the more unsavory pieces of the contract, as Sterling points out, are Plaid Social calling for reviewers to “persuade viewers to purchase the game.” Those who did agree to these terms were given requirements for coverage that included one livestream, one YouTube video, and one Facebook post as well as a Twitter post, all including positive sentiments about the games.

The most baffling aspect of this?

The contract also holds a caveat that players mention the narrative (fair enough) but not The Lord of the Rings movies, The Hobbit movies, the books or any of the supporting or source material whatsoever. Are they even allowed to mention Tolkien’s name?

At present it seems as if TotalBiscuit, one of the biggest YouTubers in gaming, has sworn off anything to do with Plaid Social. You can expect WB to find a new marketing partner or slap Plaid upside the head for this.

This is so far off from the norm that it’s shocking WB has allowed Plaid to go ahead with such contracts to anybody wanting to acquire a review code via Plaid. Sure, we regularly sign non-disclosure agreements and have to abide by embargo dates but never like this and never with this level of totalitarian dictation over what we can and cannot do as reviewers. Fortunately, here in SA we were spared the utter bullshit that is Plaid Social’s contracts. In fact, the contract seems to only really apply to those wanting PC codes.

Plaid Social has effectively found a way to bring disrepute to what promised to be one of the year’s big, positive surprises.

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Ubisoft Has Yet To Lock Down Specs For Assassin’s Creed: Unity http://egmr.net/2014/10/ubisoft-yet-lock-specs-assassins-creed-unity/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/ubisoft-yet-lock-specs-assassins-creed-unity/#comments Wed, 08 Oct 2014 06:00:09 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158424 Despite what a small, almost unseen, statement said yesterday; Ubisoft revealed today that things could still change for Assassin’s Creed: Unity. It won’t suddenly become an FPS, although that would […]

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Despite what a small, almost unseen, statement said yesterday; Ubisoft revealed today that things could still change for Assassin’s Creed: Unity. It won’t suddenly become an FPS, although that would be impressive, but rather it means that with a month to go before release the game’s developers are still hard at work to lock things down before Unity goes gold.

“Final specs for Assassin’s Creed Unity aren’t cemented yet,” a Ubisoft spokesperson was quoted speaking to Eurogamer, “but we can say we showed Assassin’s Creed Unity at 900p during our hands-on preview event last week. We’re confident that gamers will be thrilled with the gorgeous graphics and how Paris is brought to life in Assassin’s Creed Unity.”

Now, that’s bullshit.

The statement doesn’t mean anything and a month before release you shouldn’t expect anything to change.

If Ubisoft was even entertaining the idea of graphical boosts at this stage then they’re mad. Plain mad.

This statement is damage control for damage that should never have been done.

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Find Out Why The Protagonist Of Assassin’s Creed: Unity Is A Lot Like Ezio http://egmr.net/2014/10/found-protagonist-assassins-creed-unity-lot-like-ezio/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/found-protagonist-assassins-creed-unity-lot-like-ezio/#comments Tue, 07 Oct 2014 06:00:50 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158308 Ezio Auditore da Firenze, darling of the Assassin’s Creed series thus far. Unless you prefer that walking annoyance named Connor. In his defense, he has a cool coat. So where […]

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Ezio Auditore da Firenze, darling of the Assassin’s Creed series thus far. Unless you prefer that walking annoyance named Connor. In his defense, he has a cool coat. So where does this new fellow rank?

His name is Arno Dorian which already sounds silly. He’s a cheese-eating surrender monkey with a British accent in a time before his people could be termed as cheese-eating surrender monkeys.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. Set in a time of great historical significance which helped shape human history as we know it. Betrayed by the powers that be and hateful of their corruption is our young protagonist. He is on a path of vengeance to exact revenge on the people who killed his father but this will entwine him in a battle far larger than his own.

It’s Assassin’s Creed II all over again, folks. There’s even a fat sod for you to punch around in the final act.

The only difference? About 200% more explosions and a dash of intrigue and conspiracy.

Get a look at the latest story trailer for AC: Unity up top.

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Review: FIFA 15 Is The Equivalent Of A 1-0 Victory http://egmr.net/2014/10/review-fifa-15/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/review-fifa-15/#comments Mon, 06 Oct 2014 06:45:33 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157943 Visit review on site for scoring. Another year, another FIFA. It’s become a mantra as reliably constant as weather in Cape Town and Rooney transfer request rumours. Like all annual […]

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Visit review on site for scoring.


Another year, another FIFA. It’s become a mantra as reliably constant as weather in Cape Town and Rooney transfer request rumours. Like all annual affairs, eventually the lustre wears off and it needs to do something special to really catch your attention. This year’s Easter festivities will centre on painting eggs laid by actual rabbits! This year’s Call of Duty will centre on gameplay tenets that made other games successful.

So what has the frivolous FIFA fairy left in our boots this year? It’s a box. A very attractively wrapped box. What could be inside? It’s your copy of FIFA 14 from last year. Huh?

FIFA is synonymous with (largely) superfluous changes and that’s been fine because the game still feels fundamentally different from year to year. I can tell you for a fact that FIFA 10 was a much faster game than FIFA 11 which felt stodgy while FIFA 12 upped the pace of the game but necessitated some better tactics than running down the wing. I can go on.

With FIFA 15 EA Canada has done something peculiar. They’ve made the prerequisite small changes but the game doesn’t feel all too different from FIFA 14. If anything, you might be forgiven for thinking it’s much the same game. Oh, it certainly looks different with fresher, slicker and generally better built menus. In fact, the menus carry a whiff of PES, that odd duck of the sports genre. Back to the topic at hand. The changes are cerebral rather subcutaneous.

Thus, at a glance – a cavity search even – you’d think it’s FIFA 14 in a new skin. At this point you might be thinking to yourself, “Hey, surely changes that lie deeper than the surface are pretty major.” You’d be right and yet wrong at the same time.

A lot of the changes have to do with player AI but they are neither constantly nor readily apparent. It’s perhaps both a mark of good design or simply shoddy design but I didn’t always feel as if my player had a personality of his own.

What I’m referring to are the supposed improvements to player AI where players will adapt to different situations, play differently depending on the opposition and supposedly have more of an emotional response in their playing style. I saw some of that some of the time.

Playing with Man Utd (because it’s fun to build a mid-table team up to glory) I noticed a few things. Rooney is everywhere on the pitch and regularly tracks back to defend, Rojo will get forward a lot against weaker teams and van Persie is overpowered. That last one doesn’t really have anything to do with anything but seriously, I’ve created miracles with that man. That’s what this new AI system is like when it works.
When it doesn’t, the game is FIFA 14 but with players not where you want them to be and annoyingly missing shots.

That said a player’s confidence does seem to have a far bigger impact than before. Upon his purchase, Bale was a little tough to get anything out of on the pitch but with a mix of hard work and special attention he’s become marginally better. Okay, that was a bad example but trust me, confidence makes a different.

As with many of the so-called FIFA innovations this new player AI is a little sketchy and needs work. Expect it to be improved in future iterations of the game. It’s certainly not worth getting the game over.

What about those pretty visuals; the next-gen juiciness? Firstly, it’s not called next-gen anymore; get it right (I talk to myself sometimes, okay). Secondly, they’re not much different from FIFA 14. In-line with the new AI, players have a lot more facial expression but still not a great deal. Also, linesmen tend to smirk when they catch you offside. Is that a glitch or just a commentary on the state of officiating in football? Player models are noticeably better and it does add a layer of depth to the visuals to see players slide around in the rain and actually get up with stains on their kit. What is not so great is seeing a player pull on another’s shirt as it were made of latex.

While we’re talking about ridiculous physics, a simple tackle can send a player hurtling over themselves. Often enough they’ll get up from it but sometimes it actually injures them. Whatever you’ve done to the physics, EA Canada, make it stop. It’s either that or an absurd amount of aggression in the tackles delivered by opposition players. Let’s blame it on both systems.

Snapping back to visuals for a second, player animations are more detailed and realistic than ever. Even the people over on the sidelines have their own animations. It certainly adds to the immersive factor but FIFA seems stuck in the uncanny valley. Players are rendered rather realistically for the most part and yet just don’t look real. They are also animated quite well until they are not. For example, van Persie looked pretty great until he moved like a robot and walked as if John Terry had mistaken him for his wife.

As per usual, the game draws you in with its little touches and then immediately knocks you back out into the real world with glitches, jerky animations and inconsistent visuals.

Another thing you’ll notice is the way the AI seems to be respond better to Tactical Defending rather than Legacy Defending. At first it’s not really noticeable but you start to see players getting through your defence far too easily while using Legacy. It does seem to as a result of the slightly more dynamic way in which teams will attack. It’s not hugely noticeable and yet it does make a difference. The message is clear: get on board with the new system, kids.

That missive carries over to the way they’ve likely handled the game on the old-gen consoles. Now, on the old-gen FIFA 14 was a mess. Core features having to be hacked out by a barber surgeon because they were reserved for the shiny next-gen. It’s no doubt the same here so be wary. Do take my words with a pinch of aspartame as I have not touched the game on the old consoles.

A lot of your time will likely be spent either being a Pro of being a manager. In the managerial seat the new menu layout works wonderfully with tons of info but a clean, tiled design. Thank you, Windows 8. There’s not a whole lot that as changed aside from transfers, again. Instead of sending scouts out only to discover fresh talent, you can send them to various countries to scope out players in a league who meet certain requirements. If you send them to Spain with the instructions to look for a goal-scorer they will not come back with some imaginary 16 year old kid but rather Ronaldo, Messi, Bale and those other, less expensive players. It’s a good system and a realistic one. You can search for a player manually but you won’t get detailed stats on them the way you would if you sent a scout. You can also send your scouts out to watch specific players and report back on them. Unlike in FIFA 14 transfer negotiations seem easier, more streamlined and not as likely to fail for no reason. As a manager you can also now opt to reject all future bids for a player when a transfer offer comes in. This is a blessing if you absolutely do not want anybody else to get their hands on the raw goal-scoring prowess of Danny Welbeck. Oh wait…

If you’re going the other route and opting to duke out a season as a player then I’ve got some bad news for you, son. It’s a pretty grim affair. Of course you want some challenge to make you fight for your place in the starting X1 but that’s impossible when you’re constantly benched or left out of the squad for a match completely and your transfer requests are rejected. This was my experience playing as Özil for Arsenal. When I got a game for Germany things were great and I could create chances. With Arsenal it felt like hell on a football pitch. Things were not like this in previous years and I can’t understand why the system is so fickle this year.
There’s not a great deal to say about the online. It feels much the same as it did before now you can have the option to start a season with a buddy; if you’re into that sort of thing. Friends, I mean.
Let’s not hold ourselves under any delusions here, the past 1200+ words exists for purely academic purposes. Either you’ve purchased FIFA 15 or you haven’t. For the most part anyway. Who even reads FIFA reviews? What kind of human being are you?

It’s not worse than FIFA 14 but it does feel as if the need to keep the game fresh on the old consoles is holding the series back. The irony is that a chasm already exists between the two versions of the game. It may be a question of manpower but Ea Canada should do what it did with PS2/PS3 in previous years. make them essentially different games. In the grand scheme of things it matters for naught though because people will still buy FIFA, EA will still make oodles of money off of the games and in a few years this transitional phase will be gone and the focus will squarely be on the current generation of consoles.

Until then, FIFA is in something of an awkward adolescence.

To summarise then, it’s better than FIFA 14 and the base quality of FIFA is generally solid but it lacks any wow factor. FIFA 15 feels about as ho-hum as a Serie A match. Does that even mean what I think it means? Probably not.

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The Division Developers Compare It To Destiny http://egmr.net/2014/10/division-developers-compare-destiny/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/division-developers-compare-destiny/#comments Mon, 06 Oct 2014 06:00:42 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158187 Does that mean it will be barren and boring? Hopefully not. Persistent world! Social interaction! Guns! Stuff! More stuff! That’s Destiny in exclamations. We’re not greatly fond of Destiny around […]

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Does that mean it will be barren and boring? Hopefully not.

Persistent world! Social interaction! Guns! Stuff! More stuff!
That’s Destiny in exclamations.

We’re not greatly fond of Destiny around these parts and given the mixed bag of reception, it seems many of you feel the same way. It may then not be the most prudent choice to compare your as yet unreleased game to Destiny.

A GameSpot preview posted last week detailed how players will interact with each other and described he blend of social and singleplayer as Destiny-esque. In broad strokes, of course.

Outside of its main social zone,players not in your group will only appear in designated Dark Zones. Likely to prevent you from being spammed with annoying players that you don’t care to interact with. Dark Zones offer a more unstructured PvP experience than Destiny’s crucible. That’s according to The Division game director Ryan Barnard.

“You could be in a group in the Dark Zone, you’d be very aware when you’re in the Dark Zone, and that single player, you could come across them also in the Dark Zone and decide to engage if you want. But you won’t randomly run into them when you’re doing missions or when you’re in the base of operations.”

In a separate preview Barnard described the game’s narrative structure with regards to missions. There will be set milestones which must be reached before players can participate in further missions.

“When you’re doing a narrative story you have moments that you want every player to experience, and we have those in The Division as well,” Barnard said.

In other words, if your group hasn’t progressed together then people will get left behind (or ahead).

Ubisoft Massive has until next year to convince us that The Division is worth taking an interest in. For now, they have my casual curiosity.

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Why Isn’t It Called Lord Of The Rings: Shadow Of Mordor? http://egmr.net/2014/10/isnt-called-lord-rings-shadow-mordor/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/isnt-called-lord-rings-shadow-mordor/#comments Fri, 03 Oct 2014 15:00:25 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158127 Because then Peter Jackson would want to turn it into a trilogy. He probably still does anyway. That man would trilogise anything that moves in Middle-Earth. Shadow of Mordor has […]

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Because then Peter Jackson would want to turn it into a trilogy. He probably still does anyway. That man would trilogise anything that moves in Middle-Earth.

Shadow of Mordor has been out for a bit in other regions and released today in South Africa but why does it have that name? Not the Shadow of Mordor bit. It’s in frickin’ Mordor after all.

No, the part that’s peculiar is “Middle-Earth” in Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor. Speaking in an interview, lead designer Bob Roberts discussed the decision to leave Lord of the Rings out of the title.

Quite simply, Monolith wasn’t looking to milk the franchise but rather introduce something fresh that didn’t draw on players’ memories from the books or films.

“One of our goals from the beginning was not to make a ‘movie game.’ Not to just rehash the same events over again. So, just trying to make the best game we can, and making it clear that this is its own thing –– its own story, its own experience.”

It makes enough sense if you squint at it for long enough but the Middle-Earth moniker is a little incongruous. It does however, open up some possibilities. Where does Talion head to after Mordor? Will we see him traverse and adventure through other regions? Perhaps there can be a spin-off game called Middle-Earth: Bliss of Rivendell where you spend 15-18 hours simply enjoying life in Rivendell and having conversations with Red Skull.

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Mortal Kombat X Welcomes A Badass Sorcerer (It’s Not Alan Moore) http://egmr.net/2014/10/mortal-kombat-x-welcomes-badass-sorcerer-alan-moore/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/mortal-kombat-x-welcomes-badass-sorcerer-alan-moore/#comments Fri, 03 Oct 2014 06:45:33 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158070 As epic as it would be to have a fighting game starring wizard and occasional writer Alan Moore, his fever dreams could leave permanent scars. Instead, NetherRealm has revealed somebody […]

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As epic as it would be to have a fighting game starring wizard and occasional writer Alan Moore, his fever dreams could leave permanent scars. Instead, NetherRealm has revealed somebody a little less real and a whole lot less crazy but still pretty badass.

His name is Quan Chi and if that sounds like a supporting character for Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon 2: The Unnecessary Netflix Sequel then you’re in the right ball park. If you’ve played Mortal Kombat 9 then you’ll know of him. You might not like him but you definitely know him.

regardless of previous lves, Quan Chi is looking like bewitchingly great fun in Mortal Kombat X. In particular, his warlock skills look particularly brutal, using a variety of portals to perform various attacks in surprising manners.

The trailer up top gives you a good look at Quan Chi’s x-ray move which will have you saying, “now you’re thinking with portals!”

Mortal Kombat X is out on April 14 2015 on just about everything. Except Wii U. It’s never Wii U.

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Battlefield 4 Might Just Have Finally Been Fixed http://egmr.net/2014/10/battlefield-4-might-just-finally-fixed/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/battlefield-4-might-just-finally-fixed/#comments Fri, 03 Oct 2014 06:00:26 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=158068 Almost a full year later Battlefield 4 may just finally be fixed and healed of its former ailments. Just like that old gypsy woman said. Frankly, that makes me more […]

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Almost a full year later Battlefield 4 may just finally be fixed and healed of its former ailments. Just like that old gypsy woman said.

Frankly, that makes me more than a little sad. One of 2013’s biggest games from arguably the biggest publisher and certainly one of the biggest developers is only just now getting fixed. Well, that’s not true.

Releasing in a broken state, battlefield 4 has been slowly getting updates and fixes intravenously but the September patch may just be the final fix it needs.

The patch brought with it a boatload of changes to all parts of the game. The net result? Well, you’ll have to watch the latest Westie video up top to find that out. The video tackles all the big changes but most importantly delivers a verdict on just how well these changes and fixes have worked. The patch may do a lot of good but it is not without its issues.

This, folks, is the reason why word that Battlefield: Hardline will be fully functional at launch qualifies as major news.

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Shadow Of Mordor Launches Tomorrow, Get A Headstart Here http://egmr.net/2014/10/shadow-mordor-launches-tomorrow-get-headstart/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/shadow-mordor-launches-tomorrow-get-headstart/#comments Thu, 02 Oct 2014 06:45:27 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157978 Misleading titles can be misleading. All you’ll get here is a launch trailer and the first 20 minutes of gamerplay. Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor launches locally and in Europe tomorrow […]

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Misleading titles can be misleading. All you’ll get here is a launch trailer and the first 20 minutes of gamerplay.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor launches locally and in Europe tomorrow but early word from North America suggests the game is one of this year’s big surprises. A licensed game that isn’t mediocre. In fact, Shadow of Mordor might be on course to become one of this year’s big winners once awards season rolls into town.

That’s all irrelevant right now because you haven’t even played the damn thing yet. We’ve got you covered.

Up top is a little launch trailer to whet your appetite ahead of tomorrow. Ignore the Shadow of Mordor advertisement atop this webpage while you’re at it.

Down here we have the opening 20 minutes of the game.

Now that reviews are out, are you looking forward to this Lord of the Rings-inspired Batman-Assassin’s Creed hybrid that also features Joker and Joel from The Last of Us?

Not with that description I’ll bet.

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Assassin’s Creed: Unity Is Going To Insult You http://egmr.net/2014/10/assassins-creed-unity-going-insult/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/assassins-creed-unity-going-insult/#comments Thu, 02 Oct 2014 06:00:30 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157979 I’m not one for insults, they’re for the weak of mind. That doesn’t mean a well thought out and cutting insult can’t be absolutely glorious when delivered well. Assassin’s Creed: […]

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I’m not one for insults, they’re for the weak of mind. That doesn’t mean a well thought out and cutting insult can’t be absolutely glorious when delivered well.

Assassin’s Creed: Unity isn’t going to be very smart with its insults. The Deadpool game was definitely smarter on that front. In the latest lovingly crafted cinematic trailer, our entrepid hero, Arno, gets called a pisspot. For Eighteenth Century Paris that’s not really an insult. For 21st Century Paris that’s hardly an insult. More just a statement of fact.

We long ago accepted that Ubisoft no longer knows how to write worth a damn though so can we be surprised?

Despite all this animosity, the trailer is a lovely little time-waster and shows off not only Arno’s fencing skills but also mild (very mild) spoilers for what one can assume is the beginning of the game.

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Windows 10 Is So Amazing That It Can Even http://egmr.net/2014/10/windows-10-amazing-can-even/ http://egmr.net/2014/10/windows-10-amazing-can-even/#comments Wed, 01 Oct 2014 06:45:47 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157916 What’s the sign of a really, truly great OS? Forget benchmarks tests, UI tweaks and intuitive functionality. You know an OS is great when it skips a number. Windows 9? […]

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What’s the sign of a really, truly great OS? Forget benchmarks tests, UI tweaks and intuitive functionality. You know an OS is great when it skips a number. Windows 9? Bah! The new Windows is so great that it skipped a number.

Or maybe 9 looks too similar to 8 and Microsoft was worried people wouldn’t notice the difference. Apple and Samsung have shared courtrooms for less.

Windows 10 (that’s what they’re calling it) was announced last night to a small crowd of approximately 50 reporters. Understated is an understatement. It certainly looks cosy by comparison to Apple’s conference a few weeks back.

So why the number skip? Microsoft has named Windows 10 as such to highlight the direction the company is taking with the OS. Microsoft says it will be the “most comprehensive platform ever.” Because skipping 9 is comprehensive?

Windows 10 will support just about everything from the “Internet of Things” to enterprise servers. Windows 10 is designed to have a tailored experience, thus the necessity to have as wide an encompassing umbrella as possible.

Previously codenamed Threshold, Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore showed off an early beta version of the new OS on stage and it’s hardly what you’d call a surprise. More like exactly what people wanted from Windows 8. If I may explain in the form of a simple formula:

Win10 = Win7 + Win8 – (everything that people disliked about Win8)

You can see Belfiore’s demo up top.

The new OS will look a lot more like Windows 7 with a traditional desktop, none of that Modern UI shite (save for in the Start Menu) and most of all, a Start Menu that makes a little more sense. Windows 8 starts peeking through in the Live Tiles that appear on the right side of the Start menu. The tiles and the menu itself can all be resized. Tailoring, people. If you so desire, you can expand the menu beyond the perimeter of your display to allow full scrolling through your entire lineup of apps and tiles.

the task bar has also been reworked to include “task view.” This shows off all the apps currently running in your virtual desktop. Your current desktop is shown on-screen but a few thumbnails down below allow you to switch between desktops or add a new one. You can also snap up to four apps on-screen in a quadrant display. Command prompt now allows for the sue of keyboard shortcuts, including the infamous Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V.

Native apps such as Mail and calendar boast responsive design that adjusts as you resize them. For example, the Mail app can show anywhere from one to three panes and the Calendar app will display anything from a day to a full week depending on how you’ve sized the window.

If you’re familiar with Windows 8 then you might like to know that the Charms Bar still exists but Microsoft stressed that the UI is not final and changes can (and will likely) be made between now and the platform’s release.

Expect the full suite of touch and gesture elements to carry over from Windows 8.1. Aside from that, you’ll have to wait and see what Windows 10 brings to the party in terms of touch. Microsoft did say that the OS will dynamically adjust depending on what mode you’re using – keyboard and mouse or standalone touch. When in touch mode, the Modern UI shows up as a large Start Menu. Which makes good sense.

Below is a mockup of what the new OS will look like on all platforms. the far right is for you Xbots.

Windows10

This was just a teaser of what’s in store for us with Windows 10. MS is set to show a lot more at its Build conference next year with a platform launch set for late 2015.

Despite an incongruous name, Windows 10 looks to be exactly what users want while still remaining on course for Microsoft’s vision of a unified OS for all platforms.

What do you make of it?

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Nothing Can Save You In This New Evil Within Gameplay Video http://egmr.net/2014/09/nothing-can-save-new-evil-within-gameplay-video/ http://egmr.net/2014/09/nothing-can-save-new-evil-within-gameplay-video/#comments Tue, 30 Sep 2014 09:45:43 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157823 Well, unless you close this tab in your browser but don’t be a dick about it. That said, if you’re easily frightened then you have my permission to NOPE the […]

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Well, unless you close this tab in your browser but don’t be a dick about it. That said, if you’re easily frightened then you have my permission to NOPE the hell out of here right now.

Resident Evil has swiftly become the type of game that you can shoot your way out of. That’s not horror. That’s certainly not survival. You’re pretty much looking at games with zero tension. Shinji Mikami has a very different vision with The Evil Within.

The Resident Evil creator is going back to his roots with The Evil Within and not even bullets can save you this time. Some fans were initially sceptical about the protagonist having a gun but it will be just as divisive as a flashlight as far as survival and tension-building go.

Suffice to say, make every bullet count.

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Watch Nearly 50 Minutes Of Dragon Age: Inquisition Complete With Gorgeous Eyelashes http://egmr.net/2014/09/watch-nearly-50-minutes-dragon-age-inquisition-complete-gorgeous-eyelashes/ http://egmr.net/2014/09/watch-nearly-50-minutes-dragon-age-inquisition-complete-gorgeous-eyelashes/#comments Tue, 30 Sep 2014 06:45:42 +0000 http://egmr.net/?p=157814 There’s a little actual gameplay in here too. During a livestream via Twitch last night, BioWare showcased nearly 20 minutes worth of Dragon Age: Inquisition and it’s looking pretty damn […]

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There’s a little actual gameplay in here too.

During a livestream via Twitch last night, BioWare showcased nearly 20 minutes worth of Dragon Age: Inquisition and it’s looking pretty damn fantastic right now. That delay certainly seems to be have been worth it.

The video above showcases the extremely deep character creation tools. I don’t even know what type of eyelashes I want my character to have let alone the complimentary eyeshadow to go with those eyelashes!It’s nearly a full half-hour of character creation, folks.

Down here we have that new section of gameplay that was shown last night.

BioWare, you have my attention.

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