The spiritual successor to Banjo Kazooie, Yooka-Laylee, is still on track to get a Nintendo Switch release but developer Playtonic has run into a bit of trouble. It seems that issues with the latest version of the Unity engine have resulted in "technical hurdles" that the team is trying to sort through.
Which means an exact launch date is up in the air, with Playtonic noting "We understand the frustration that it’s taken so long to get the game in your hands but we hope that you understand that we’re working as fast as we can and want the game to perform as well as it possibly can on Switch. Once these remaining issues are resolved we hope to finally be able to commit to and share a launch date".
Here's to the team sorting through these problems sooner rather than later, in the meantime be sure to check out our review of Yooka-Laylee on the Xbox One.
Thanks to the lovely people at Five Star Games and SEGA we've got a copy of Total War: Warhammer 2 Limited Edition to give away! The Total War: Warhammer 2 Limited Edition includes the game, embossed metal case, sticker sheet, and exclusive mini-strategy guide.
Entry is easy, just tell us in 25 words or less:
"What race in the Warhammer universe do you believe deserves to take control of the Great Vortex?"
The PC Open Beta for Call of Duty: WWII Multiplayer is coming to Steam this weekend, with pre-downloads beginning today via the Steam page. Which also means that we've now got the recommended specs for Call of Duty: WWII in addition to details on additional PC features like FOV resizing and Ultra-Wide Monitor support.
Open ear headphones often result in those closest to you also hearing what's going on. And that's close in the proximity sense. A small price to pay when the open design often leads to more comfortable headphones. Plus, the laws of physics dictate that the increased air flow improves bass response. The ATH-ADG1X gaming headset from Audio Technica are not only comfortable to wear, but they also provide exceptional gaming performance.
Audiophiles know the name Audio Technica. And for good reason too. Solid build quality, great reliable parts, and a warm sound that is perfect for listening to music. The Audio Technica ATH-ADG1X is a premium headset from the headphone maker designed specifically for gaming, built from the same quality parts found in their straight audio line. With its open ear design the ATH-ADG1X headset provides the same level of comfort that one comes to expect from Audio Technica, but with a sound that is fine-tuned to make the most out of games. This means a distinctly more impressive low end to match the crisp and detailed highs.
Last week Epic announced that a free-to-play PUBG style Battle Royale mode, called Battle Royale, was coming to its build-a-fort and defend it from waves of zombie attacks Early Access title Fortnite. Also it would make its debut this week, and on consoles too. For some reason, PUBG developer Bluehole felt that this deserved a very open and harsh response.
"We've had an ongoing relationship with Epic Games throughout PUBG's development as they are the creators of UE4, the engine we licensed for the game," said Chang Han Kim, Bluehole, Inc exec. "After listening to the growing feedback from our community and reviewing the gameplay for ourselves, we are concerned that Fortnite may be replicating the experience for which PUBG is known."
Which is weird because PUBG wasn't the first Battle Royale game, nor is Fortnite the first console release to take on the format - GTA V introduced a similar mode not that long ago. The issue then shifts to Epic's use of PUBG in the promotion of the new mode. "We have also noticed that Epic Games references PUBG in the promotion of Fortnite to their community and in communications with the press. This was never discussed with us and we don't feel that it's right."
Which was re-iterated in a response to PC Gamer when approached about the confusing messaging and why Bluehole was taking aim at Fortnite for implementing a mode it didn't invent. The stance now seems to have shifted to be a direct attack at Epic for using the PUBG name.
"So the first thing that I'd like to clarify is that this is not about the battle royale game mode itself," Kim told PC Gamer. "There were other BR game modes earlier this year that were released, like last man standing or GTA 5's battle royale game mode, and we never raised an issue, and I think it's great that there's more competition and everyone should be able to create their own battle royale game mode, and it's not about the idea itself, it's about Epic Games, and that wasn't really clear [in the press release]."
"So, we just want to emphasize this is only a problem because Epic Games is the company that makes the engine we use and we pay a large amount of royalties to them," Kim said. "And we had this business relationship and we had trust that we would be getting continued support, and we were looking forward to working more closely with them to get technical support, maybe develop new features. But our name was used to officially promote their game without our knowledge. There was no discussion. It was just a bit surprising and disappointing to see our business partner using our name officially to promote the game mode that is pretty similar to us and there was misunderstanding in the community that we're officially involved in the project."
Weird. There's seems to be more going on here, with the initial response clearly sounding like Bluehole feeling that its engine supplier was stealing their game mode.
For fans of realistic racers and titles featuring hundreds of real-world cars, 2017 is turning out to be quite the year. Forza Motorsport 7, Gran Turismo Sport, and today's spotlight Project Cars 2 - which definitely aims to out real even the most realistic racer you've ever played. Digital car racing aficionado Adrian Haas, takes a well earned pit stop after racing so several hours to bring you this review.
Where other racing games out there might allow you to transform a Mini Cooper from a sturdy performer to a 900 horsepower all wheel drive twin turbo beast, Project Cars 2’s customisation is strictly confined to the real world. An adjustment to the Mini’s radiator opening - measured as a percentage - will enhance or restrict engine airflow. The In-Car Management system allows for tyre compound and pressure changes individually or across all four wheels. Suspension and damping settings, downforce and gearing tweaks, are performed in the garage. Overall it will still be a powerful Mini, but not something fantastical and unlikely to, you know, exist.
Now this is a very cool competition. In that it will reward PlayStation Platinum Trophy hunters across multiple titles, giving them the chance to win a very limited real-life Platinum Trophy. As in there will are only four of them.
Starting with FIFA 18, once players achieve all in-game Trophies and receive the Platinum Digital Trophy (which is no easy feat), they must then take a screenshot and share it on Facebook or Twitter tagging @PlayStationAU and using the hashtag #PlusPlatinumHunters.
Additional titles that will be included in this PlayStation Platinum Hunters competition include Gran Turismo Sport (out October 18) and Call of Duty: WWII (out November 3). And none of which sound like they'll be easy to snag all the Trophies. Making this one competition with a super rare and awesome prize, that will definitely go to someone with serious skill.
Which kind of suits the whole trophy ideal perfectly. Nice one.
Dishonored is the sort of series that as soon as you play it with any sort of seriousness, it'll be something that you'll always gladly come back to. Dishonored: Death of the Outsider, the new standalone expansion that revisits a few of the iconic Dishonored 2 locations whilst presenting a new story, with a new protagonist, definitely falls into that category.
Viewed as a victory lap, or victory stab, this is an exceptional release. Setting aside the fact that you’ll revisit locations from Dishonored 2, there’s still a sense of care and thought put into every mission and side contract. The smaller focus only seems to affect character progression, which this time around is limited to the act of equipping bone charms. Those otherworldly bits of cartilage that provide minor upgrades along the lines of being able to jump higher or stab stronger. In terms of raw abilities Billy Lurk is equipped with everything she needs to pull off a mission right out of the gate.
With id software and Bethesda targeting those numbers to ensure a constant and smooth performance for DOOM's handheld debut. Yeah, it's crazy to think that they've managed to fit the entire single-player game and Arcade Mode on a 16GB cartridge, but they did. No doubt it will feature some visual compromises compared to the high-end PC version, but this is still impressive news none the less.
Here's some off-screen footage of DOOM on Nintendo Switch captured by Gamespot. Not the best way to get an idea of how a game looks, but performance-wise it looks good.
The multiplayer side will also be available, but as a separate 9GB download.
And probably more too, but if you're headed to PAX Australia this year then there's a lot to look forward to esports-wise. The Throwdown Esports Stage at PAX will play host to the first-ever large-scale Street Fighter V competition on Saturday October 28. With a full day of Ryu versus whoever dares take on Ryu action planned.
The following day, on Sunday October 29, the Throwdown Esports Stage will play host to the Rocket League Oceanic Championship Finals. Where players from Australia and New Zealand will compete for the chance to head to the World Championships in November, plus take home their piece of the $25,000 USD prize pool.
Over at the PAX Arena, the Paladins teams have been announced for the Hi-Rez Oceania Championships - Kanga Esports, Outlaws, Amigo 5, and Rune Platebody G (RPG). These teams will also face off on Saturday 28 October on the PAX Arena Stage, where the winning team will take home a big piece of the $15,000 prize pool. And earn the chance to compete in the World Championships, at Hi-Rez Expo 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Phew! Okay, so we'll be bringing you more esports @ PAX as we get it. So stay tuned.
With the post simply noting the date of Thursday 11am ET as when we'll be getting more info on Red Dead Redemption 2. Which would be 1am Friday in Australia (AEST). It's been a while since we've seen anything on the game, which was originally due for release this year before getting delayed to sometime in first half of 2018. So, what should be expect later this week?
My money is on an expanded trailer, this time detailing more of the story and setting. Perhaps even a release month.
There's no doubt that Red Dead Redemption 2 is one of the most anticipated games out there, and with Rockstar's GTA V becoming one of the biggest sellers of all time we should probably expect some form of GTA Online as a Western to be a huge part of the eventual release. How that'll work exactly we're not sure, but maybe we'll get our first glimpse this week.
Rugby, the sport where a ball moves across a field in search of a goal. That goal, a literal goal. Metal posts standing in parallel, beckoning for the strength of an oversized human male to assist in its movement towards the goal. Which again, is a literal goal. The point is, I no very little about Rugby. And even less about poetic symbolism.
The most complete rugby videogame to date, RUGBY 18 captures the intensity of the biggest games of the 2017-2018 season through its selection of 65 official teams and more than 2,000 professional players from around the world:
National teams : Australia (Wallabies), South Africa (Springboks), New Zealand (All Blacks), England, Fiji, France, Scotland, Wales, Italia
Championships and their teams: TOP 14, PRO D2, PRO14, Aviva Premiership Rugby.
So there you have it, Rugby 18 will be available in Australia on October 27 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC.
That would be Chris Redfield, who began his zombie and monster slaying career in the creepy mansion of the very first Resident Evil. As the star of the new 'Not a Hero' DLC pack for Resident Evil 7, which will be free when it launched December 12, Chris has wisely brought some heat to act of exploring an abandoned mine-shaft.
Which the shift to a first-person perspective for Resident Evil 7, this little slice of gameplay footage from 'Not a Hero' is more shooter than the series has ever been. Well, in the numbered proper releases that is. Does it still feel like Resident Evil? Hard to say, but it definitely looks good. And with Resident Evil 7 being a return to form, we're hoping this has the scares to back up all the bullets.
Plus, a chance to cheer on Team Australia at the Overwatch World Cup Grand Final at BlizzCon 2017. So yeah, be sure to keep an eye out for this. Which would be hard to miss, with 25 elite gaming stations in a roving 23 tonne 5 metres high by 3 metres wide display of pure PC power.
The Omen Roadshow will be making stops across the country too.
Oz Comic-Con, Sydney: September 30 – October 1
JB Hi-Fi, Coffs Harbour: October 3 – October 4
EB Expo, Gold Coast: October 7 – October 8
Harvey Norman, Bundall: October 14 – October 15
Harvey Norman, Nunawading: October 19 – October 20
JB Hi-Fi, Essendon: October 21 – October 22
PAX, Melbourne: October 28 – October 29
In addition for a chance to win a BlizzCon 2017 dream come true, there's also meeting YouTube personalities like Elliott Watkins (Muselk), Kathleen Belsten (Loserfruit), Oasis Ho Yee Nip (Oasis on Overwatch) and Brodey de Meur (Bazza Gazza). So yeah, BlizzCon baby.
Naturally this also all about showcasing the power of the new Omen gaming rigs by HP. Which admittedly look beastly. For more info on the event, head here.
Earlier this week we reported on the announcement of Left Alive at the Tokyo Game Show, a new survival action shooter from Square Enix. Today we learn that it's set in the world of 'Front Mission' and comes from Toshifumi Nabeshima, who worked on the Armored Core games plus Metal Gear character designer Yoji Shinkawa.
Here's the updated trailer.
And here be screens.
Still, it's had to tell exactly what sort of game this is. Either way, Left Alive will be out sometime in 2018 for PlayStation 4 and PC.
Online titles always have a way of bringing out the worst in people. And the best. Which is why the former always tends to stick out even when it might only represent a tiny fraction of the community. As part of Blizzard's ongoing efforts to create a more welcoming Overwatch environment as of next week it will start dishing out permanent bans.
And, it sounds pretty serious.
Starting Wednesday, September 27, any player who accumulates three or more seasonal bans may be permanently banned from Competitive Play, removing their ability to participate in any future matches in that mode.
There's no way that Blizzard would implement such harsh measures without the need for it, so the situation must be causing a lot of issues for players. Also, Blizzard notes that "once an account is permanently banned, it currently cannot return to good standing".
For more info on the ban, head here. And remember, if you join a match and see Hanzo on your team, stick it out to the end.
One of the reasons people play racing sims is the simple fact that you get to drive a bunch of different cars that you probably would never actually get to see in real life. Let alone drive. Real life high-end McLaren vehicles like the 650S Coupe and the 650S GT3 are a good example. Both of which will be in next month's Gran Turismo Sport for PlayStation 4. But, there's also something very special coming too.
The McLaren Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo, which was born from game creator Kazunori Yamauchi calling for vehicle manufacturers to design visionary GT cars to compete in Gran Turismo Sport.
“We wanted to break new ground and to innovate and the McLaren Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo does exactly that. It puts the driver absolutely at the centre of the action, delivering a sensory overload with incredible sound and awe-inspiring acceleration. From the game player’s point of view, the driving experience in this car will be like nothing else: the amazing glass cockpit and the motorcycle-like driving position – with your head far forward, almost right above the front axle – combine to allow you to see exactly where the apex of the corner is so you can shave vital milliseconds off each lap. More than anything though, the McLaren Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo is a stunning looking car. The design form communicates exactly what the car’s mission is and what its intentions are: it’s the ultimate expression of the McLaren design pillars and principles we have already established, futured into the 2030s.”
Rob Melville, Design Director, McLaren Automotive
Featuring carbon fibre construction with Integrated Active Aero features, pioneering central, prone driving position and 1,150 horsepower hybrid powertrain, it sounds impressive. Doubly so when you have no idea what half of that means. But really, it's awesome that McLaren spent the time to engineer and create a brand new supercar, digitally.
Gran Turismo Sport races onto PlayStation 4, October 17.
With Creative Assembly about to drop Total War: Warhammer II next week, we've got the official word on the post-release content coming to the game. Now, this has become standard for a lot of high profile releases of late but in the case to Total War: Warhammer the Mortal Empires update sounds incredible.
Because for owners of both Total War: Warhammer I and II a free third grand campaign map combining both the Old World and the New World is coming. Not only will it effectively double the amount of territory, but also the number of playable factions.
We've long spoken about our end-goal for the Total War: Warhammer trilogy: to realise the Warhammer Fantasy Battles world in the most complete and detailed way as possible. All those races from 8th Edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles with army books, each with their own starting positions, all playable in the kind of holistic, mega-sandbox of Warhammer joy nobody has ever attempted before.
We also said we'd do this in three stages: part one would cover the geographical area of the Old World. Parts two and three would explore other geographical areas and races. Shortly after Warhammer II launches, owners of both parts one and two will get to play a key part of that grand vision with our first FreeLC download: Total War: WARHAMMER – Mortal Empires.
Which means that we can expect to find the same thing with the eventual release of Total War: Warhammer III. After experiencing the new races and the new campaign, another even bigger update will combine all three campaign maps.
For more on Total War: Warhammer II check out our recent interview with Creative Assembly.
Called Battle Royale, and it's coming to Fortnite next week launching as a free mode on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC. For those with an understanding of PUBG the 100-player PvP mode will sound familiar. Except that the fort building mechanics of Fortnite will carry over to add a new twist to the Battle Royale formula.
Here's the trailer.
With a similar mode also available on GTA Online, we should probably expect to see more PUBG inspired multiplayer content in the coming months. In terms of Fortnite's Battle Royale mode, it's quite the smart play by Epic as currently there's nothing quite like it on PS4 of Xbox One. With PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds console debut still slated for release sometime later this year.
If you've played through the excellent Tomb Raider from 2013, you'll no doubt get a sense of deja vu whilst watching this trailer for the new Lara Croft film. Which is also a reboot. And some slight confusion when you see that dude from The Wire, the robot girl from Ex Machina, and Boyd Crowder from Justified. Anyway, the source material update is a sound decision and some of what we see here could potentially, umm, end up as part of decent film.
It's hard to be too optimistic about movies based on games, so once again we'll wait and see.
Rise of the Tomb Raider Movie Without Angelina Jolie is due in cinemas Early 2018.
Twenty years after our first taste of 3D Mario on the Nintendo 64, we go hands-on with one the biggest releases for this holiday season. Super Mario Odyssey on the Nintendo Switch. The next entry in the genre defining series that began with Super Mario 64. Yeah, this is kind of a big deal. And if you're wondering how it fits into the legacy of classic Mario, be sure to read on.
Super Mario 64 was not only a system seller, it represented that first huge step into the world of true 3D gaming. Polygons, textures, draw distances. The hypothetical z-axis and an abundance of what we would come to know as fog. Most of the 3D worlds found in the ‘90s were riddled with the stuff. To those who took the plunge, whilst giving a middle-finger to the slow as hell technology they called the CD-ROM, the cartridge-based Nintendo 64 was home to many classic, gimmick free, pure gaming experiences. No boring movies to sit through, or rump shaking CD music to shake our rumps to. Just straight-up next level 3D gameplay.
But no doubt filled with more dragons and trolls and giant flame spells. Ahead of the September 28 launch of Total War Warhammer II we chat with developer Creative Assembly about the second entry in the planned trilogy, and bringing the Total War experience to a rich fantasy world.
Turns out research is carried out in the same manner. With the added bonus of cool miniatures to study.
AusGamers: With the detailed knowledge that the team has in terms of real-world history, how have you approached research and the accumulation of knowledge for the fantasy world of Warhammer?
Al Bickham: Actually, it’s been remarkably similar to researching a new historical period. We just traded our history books for Warhammer rule and army books. And while the physical amount of work required to create and animate hordes of freakish monsters has been considerably higher than that required in a historical game (our art and animation teams are now way, way bigger than they’ve ever been), we also have the physical miniatures in front of us to work from. Which is another fantastic resource to have.
Covering the American cities of Dallas, Houston, and Philadelphia. Bringing the total number of teams for the first season of the long-awaited Overwatch League to 12 - covering Asia, Europe, and North America. But mostly, North America. Which is to be expected, especially with the recent announcement of the Blizzard Arena Los Angeles.
Which is where all preseason and regular season games will take place when Overwatch League competition begins January 10, 2018. Preseason play is expected to commence on December 6.
“We’re excited to kick off the inaugural season of the Overwatch League,” said Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick. “We have the very best team owners in esports and we will celebrate our professional players better than any league ever has!”
“With the first 12 teams in place, we’re now just a few short months away from the inaugural season of the Overwatch League,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment. “This is a huge milestone for the league; we can’t wait for the action to get underway and to see some of the top competitive Overwatch players in the world facing off to become the first-ever Overwatch League champions.”
The three new teams announced today come from established names in esports and regular sports - Comcast Spectacor (Philadelphia), Team Envy (Dallas), and OpTic Gaming (Houston).
Well, once again. With the recent special Project Scorpio Launch Edition of the Xbox One X selling out almost immediately, making it the most popular Xbox console pre-order ever a lot of people have been waiting patiently for pre-orders to re-commence for the Xbox One X: Regular Edition. And that day is today, with pre-orders now open Australia wide.
At retailers like EB Games, JB Hi-Fi, Big W, Target, and so forth.
The Xbox One X, marketed as the most powerful console ever made with an approximate 40% increase in performance over any current console, it's clear that even if those figures are slightly off there's still cause to get excited for the 4K-capable console.
The Xbox One X arrives November 7, with a price point of RRP AUD $649.
Initially we had a review-in-progress happening from one Adam "Grizz" Mathew, awaiting Bungie's final Raid content to drop. Well, after having tackled said Raid content while also eating up everything else the game has to offer, Grizz has returned with his final word on the console release of the game (we'll look at the PC release next month when it hits Blizzard.net).
Here's a snippet from his complete and in-depth review:
The good news is that the campaign continues for an additional hour and wraps in a satisfying conclusion (ie there's no “Stranger” who appears to befuddle you with WTF nonsense, followed by a credits roll.) Better yet, a slew of post-win missions, adventures and strikes open up which effectively doubles the runtime of Destiny 2.
The latter, strikes, are quite replayable as they've grown in complexity to the point where they're almost miniature raids – a series of unique challenges and puzzle wrinkles that go well beyond "just ventilate everything". These are few in number, however, so the long-tail grind revolves around a weekly tick off of PvE and PvP milestones. Yes, it's covering old ground but getting bored is difficult when the battlefields are this vast and dynamic. Something else I didn't expect: repeated exposure to the mission-givers and their meaty side-missions has made me better understand and accept their idiosyncrasies. (I still, however, maintain that Asher is an irredeemable prick.)
Raid-wise, Bungie has delivered its greatest work yet. Destiny 2 eclipses the challenge and creativity witnessed in Wrath of the Machine and even the secrets-laden wonder of the venerable Vault of Glass. Whereas the latter was a descent into the dank caverns of a Vex stronghold, Leviathan is a dizzying ascent into the impossibly opulent mansion of a Goldmemberesque Cabal hedonist. It's basically one big cosmic reality show where you and five mates are the very confused, very outnumbered contestants. The whole shenanigan is modularly designed, too, so there's no telling what the order of madness will be from week to week. That's freshness and longevity, right there.