Even though the first bit o' DLC content for The Elder Scrolls Online, Imperial City, is less than a month old comes news that the next bit o' DLC, Orsinium, will be available next month. Being the place where the Orc race resides this new area is said to focus on single-player adventuring and group story-driven questing. Plus, give players the ability to ride giant bears across Tamriel.
With the purchase of the Orsinium DLC game pack, you get access to the full city of Orsinium and zone of Wrothgar. That includes the following:
Over 20 hours of captivating story content and quests
A long-awaited exploration of the culture of Tamriel's Orcs
A colossal new zone available to characters of all levels
A new single-player progressive challenge, The Maelstrom Arena
Quests and objectives that contribute to rebuilding the city of Orsinium, returning it to its former glory
Two large public dungeons, Old Orsinium and Rkindaleft, featuring all-new challenges for both solo and group play
Six all-new, challenging world bosses
Powerful new gear, unique crafting styles, and other rewards inspired by the history and denizens of Wrothgar
18 powerful new item sets including 6 ability-altering weapons, 9 sets obtained by participating in activities in Wrothgar, and 3 new craftable sets
Over an hour of brand new in-game musical score
Orsinium, the second DLC pack for Elder Scrolls Online, is due on PC/Mac on November 2nd, Xbox One on November 17th, and PlayStation 4 on November 18th. It will be available for free for all ESO Plus subscribers and for 3,000 Crowns for everyone else.
Last week I had the opportunity to spend a few hours with Assassin's Creed Syndicate, and you can read my preview here. During the event, I also had a chat with Syndicate's Game Director, Scott Phillips to learn more about how Ubisoft picks time periods, the tone of the latest game, and fundamental questions about changes to the parkour and combat mechanics.
The meat of the interview comes in the second half, a snippet of which you can see below.
AusGamers: I also noticed that, but I couldn’t really repeat it in game, but I noticed there was a time when I ran Evie towards an edge and she pulled up short and stopped. I was curious, is that the game trying to tell me I wouldn’t be able to make that jump?
Scott Phillips: When you hit an edge and if you don’t continue with just the right trigger, it’s because the distance is too far down below you. What we set out to do with the parkour is to make sure that the player has what we refer to as RTA/RTB [right trigger + A / right trigger + B], which would be the Xbox controls. Essentially it’s parkour up and then parkour down, and we wanted to make it more obvious and more clear cut what does what. So parkour up will always take you up walls and make you go above and climb on top of things. RT [right trigger] will take you in the core trajectory, you’ll always be moving forward as fast as possible, and then RTB or parkour down will take you down as fast as you can possibly go. So we wanted to give the player more control over where they wanted to go, which can sometimes mean that until you’re used to how you should use the system, you’ll get stopped sometimes because we don’t want to blend every movement mode to the point where you’re confused and you don’t know what you’re going to get. So you may get stopped sometimes until you learn how to use the system a little bit better, and then you’ll feel much more in control of that character.
And you'll need "at least 40 GB of free space". Plus, all the other components that make up a PC. Like a monitor so you can see the game, and speakers or headphones so you can listen to it too. Announced via EA's Origin service we now know what the minimum and recommended PC hardware requirements for Star Wars Battlefront look like -- with all the important CPU, GPU, and RAM requirements detailed.
Minimum PC System Requirements
OS: 64-bit Windows 7 or later
Processor (Intel): Intel i3 6300T or equivalent
Memory: 8GB RAM
Hard Drive: At least 40 GB of free space
Graphics card (NVIDIA): nVidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB
Graphics card (ATI): ATI Radeon HD 7850 2GB
DirectX: 11.0 Compatible video card or equivalent
Online Connection Requirements: 512 KBPS or faster Internet connection
Recommended PC System Requirements
OS: 64-bit Windows 10 or later
Processor (Intel): Intel i5 6600 or equivalent
Memory: 16GB RAM
Hard Drive: At least 40 GB of free space
Graphics card (NVIDIA): nVidia GeForce GTX 970 4GB
Graphics card (AMD): AMD Radeon R9 290 4GB
DirectX: 11.1 Compatible video card or equivalent
Online Connection Requirements: 512 KBPS or faster Internet connection
Now, if looking at the recommended specs makes your water-cooled PC laugh at the paltry numbers being thrown around you're probably going to be fine. But for those of us with GPU's that don't end in 'GTX' now's probably the time to upgrade.
Next week sees the release of the first expansion for The Witcher 3, Hearts of Stone, and with it comes a lengthy campaign (around 10 hours or so) that will see Geralt face off against a powerful immortal. The new launch trailer for the October 13 release does well to set the scene and remind everyone just how brilliant and surprising The Witcher 3 can be.
In addition to the new story, Hearts of Stone will also feature new areas to explore, monsters to slay, and new Gwent cards to collect! Now that last bit may not sound as epic as the rest, but fans of the popular card game from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will no doubt want that confirmation.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Hearts of Stone launches on October 13, 2015.
Yesterday we found out about the existence of Far Cry Primal, courtesy of a leaked tweet, but today the official word on the game has come through from Ubisoft. It's scheduled to ship on the 23rd of February for console players, but PC gamers will have to wait until an undisclosed date in March 2016.
As for the actual game, the press release says it's set during "the savage Stone Age". It's being developed by Ubisoft Montreal, with help from Ubisoft offices in Toronto, Shanghai and Kiev. Primal is described as "a full-fledged single player experience", meaning you shouldn't hold your breath for multiplayer, in a game world that ditches modernity in favour of a 10,000 BC setting (hopefully not too close to the terribad Roland Emmerich film).
Players jump into the skinned boots of Takkar, who's described as an apt hunter and the lone survivor of his hunting group. The goal of the game is reportedly surviving in a wilderness where humans are the hunted. During the course of the campaign, you'll square off against beasts and tribes, hunting food, crafting weapons and tools, and apparently mastering fire, while you're at it.
There was a Star Wars Battlefront preview event last week, where games journalists and youtubers alike got the opportunity to ask DICE staff pressing questions. One question more than one person asked related directly to micro-transactions -- the big news this morning was a story on Gamespot claiming that Battlefront doesn't have them.
When asking about micro-transactions, Niklas Fergraeus, Design Director on the game, indicated that players would not be able to purchase credits with real world money.
Gamespot: So, is that the only way you can obtain credits? By earning them by performance?
Niklas Fergraeus: Yes, that's what's in the game. Absolutely.
In another interview, however, conducted by genius reviewer and brilliant interviewer Joab Gilroy for Games On Net, Fergraeus expertly dodged answering the question.
Games On Net: In Battlefield games there has been the option to shortcut by purchasing the Engineer pack, or something like that. Is that going to be an option you guys are exploring for Battlefront with the cards?
Niklas Fergraeus: When it comes to any type of post-launch support we don’t have anything to talk about, but we of course want to support the game after it launches.
Does this mean there are micro-transactions in Star Wars Battlefront for sure? No. But let's not kid ourselves -- they called the gear system in the game "Cards" and they want you to build a hand containing your perfect combination of items. Can you buy the in-game currency with real-world money? No, not according to the Gamespot interview. But when asked about card packs instead, Fergraeus answered with the video game equivalent of 'no comment'. Not a categorical shutdown of the idea, an evasion.
After accidentally building too much goodwill by way of a competent new expansion with well-made, well-tested gameplay elements, Destiny has attempted to correct course back onto its path of rampant self-destruction by announcing a micro-transaction system where people can buy things in-game with real world money.
Destiny is brilliant, by the way. It defies definition. It's always online with persistent characters and servers, but it's not an MMO (because most public games of Counter-Strike have more players at once than a Destiny instance). It's not a generic shooter because the loot chasing and leveling systems diminish skill as the primary path to success. It's not an RPG because you level up by getting more light on your clothes or whatever. It's not a loot chasing game because it doesn't have any loot, and any loot it has is loot you'll never get.
With the addition of micro-transactions, it seems to be really throwing the gauntlet at its users. They've already paid to beta test more than 12 months worth of games and expansions at this point -- are they willing to put their money where Bungie's mouth is and buy some emotes? Did you always wonder why the dancing animation for the Warlock was so bad? With the Eververse Trading Company, you can finally stop dancing like an old timey gold miner who just struck it big.
According to the extremely sincere blog post on Bungie.com the emote store will be available in The Tower from next Tuesday the 13th of October -- presumably after the weekly reset. According to the same blog post players will be getting some silver anyway, so they can buy 'an emote or two'. And that doesn't sound anything like a dealer giving a potential mark a little taste just to wet their beak a little. Not at all.
I'm being a bit of a wanker, actually. If it stays all cosmetic items it's a solid way for Bungie to earn some revenue to keep the servers up and running. The people buying this stuff, they've already stuck through the worst times for Destiny anyway -- I'm sure they'd be happy to plonk down some cash for new dances or whatever in their favourite game. What do you think?
The premature tweet has some legs to it, though -- it's accompanying a live stream link from Ubisoft which shows what appear to be cave paintings. The livestream has been going for 4 hours now with still nothing to show except for a repeatedly changing teaser splash, but if you look at the paintings you can make out rhinoceroses, saber-tooth tigers, wooly mammoths and more.
So, what is Far Cry Primal? If I had to guess (and I don't have to, but I will) I'd say it's some sort of Ice Age style open world game. Bows, Arrows, that little raccoon chasing an acorn. The whole bit. It's almost as good as 80s schlock action madness, but without the T-Rexs which spit laser beams it's hard to say whether it will be as good as Blood Dragon. Would you play a caveman Far Cry? What would be this game's Cassowary or Honey Badger?
As many of you know, one of our contributors and a dear friend, Naren Hooson, passed away just over two weeks ago. He took his own life and was battling anxiety and depression. We've set up a fundraising page in his honour with Beyond Blue, which also coincides with Mental Health Week, this week.
You could argue that having just a week, or an "Are You OK?" day isn't enough, and you'd be right. But as awareness, these are still important initiatives, and so we've set up a page with Beyond Blue in honour of Naren and what he stood for, both with his disease and what he accomplished while battling it.
Any donation is a good donation. And please share this with as many people as possible. The stigma that surrounds this issue in Australia, particularly with men, needs to be stamped out and by giving, you'd be giving to just that. Let's not "harden the fuck up", let's "speak the fuck up".
Naren Hooson was a brother to so many people. He was a teacher, a friend, an uncle and one of the most giving people you could possibly hope to ever meet.
He would bring an energy to the room that was gravity-defying. People were drawn to him because of it, and he made so many friends through this natural state, it's hard to actually count how many he had, or how many he touched.
But that fact alone, speaks volumes about the pain and stress depression and anxiety can have on a person. He questioned himself over and over again, despite so much validation in his life. He was an educator; helping everyone -- struggling, gifted, or even just lazy kids -- to knuckle down and be the best they could be. He did this while battling his disease. He was, and is, an inspiration to us all.
He loved music, he loved footy, he loved the people around him, but in the end he didn't know how to love himself.
Please help us honour his legacy of learning, by contributing to a cause bent on changing the stigma of mental health for men in this country, please help us stamp out this horrible disease -- a disease that is as debilitating as cancer. Please help us save the next Naren from taking their caring, loving and giving selves from this world. We need them. Every single one.
If you give, we have a hashtag for Naren, who likened himself to a viking, albeit a gentle and caring one - #NordicByNatureForever - please use this to help share your donation and just any thoughts you have for one of our own, now gone.
I've been playing Star Wars Battlefront, or at least the beta for it! I went all the way to Stockholm in Sweden to get it done, and when I returned I had footage for days. Unfortunately, none of it involved playing as Darth Vader.
The first video in the series has links to the other three videos in it, so it's embedded below. All the footage is recorded in 1080p resolution and at 60 frames per second, so bump the setting up on Youtube itself if you want to see it in all its glory. Otherwise, click through to the feature to see my full script and each video individually!
If you've fired up a few different games over the past decade you should be familiar with the name Havok. And with good reason, as Havok are the leading provider of 3D physics to developers across the globe. And now they're a part of Microsoft. A change that should pose no, err, change to the existing licensing of tools to various partners. But, Microsoft have noted that in looking to the future they would like to see Havok integration alongside existing tool-sets for DirectX 12, Visual Studio and the cloud-based Microsoft Azure platform.
As we welcome Havok to the Microsoft family, we will continue to work with developers to create great gaming experiences, and continue to license Havok’s development tools to partners. We believe that Havok is a fantastic addition to Microsoft’s existing tools and platform components for developers, including DirectX 12, Visual Studio and Microsoft Azure.
Havok is an amazing technology supplier in the games industry and the leading real-time physics creator. We saw an opportunity to acquire Havok to deliver great experiences for our fans. Throughout the company’s history, they’ve partnered with Activision, EA, Ubisoft, Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft and many others to create more than 600 games including Halo, Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty, Destiny, Dark Souls and The Elder Scrolls.
In the announcement Microsoft make specific mention of the upcoming Crackdown 3, a title that will require an internet connection to the cloud-based Azure platform in order to handle the physics in the game.
Late night talk shows aren't exactly known for their respectful coverage of gaming culture. With respectful in this case meaning the opposite of "clearly they've never played this before and have mentioned the phrase 'parent's basement' at least twice already." Stephen Colbert has always been a little different, and after taking over from David Letterman as the new host of Late Night he's been firing on all cylinders -- which this preview of No Man's Sky with Hello Games' Sean Murray clearly demonstrates.
Although we don't get to see anything new in terms of what's on offer, or even a release date, it serves as a gentle reminder that No Man's Sky is still one hell of a proposition. And completely mind-boggling, in the best possible way.
The new launch trailer for Halo 5: Guardians features two things. A lot of buildings getting destroyed, and a lot of shots of Master Chief running past a lot of buildings getting destroyed. Also, it manages to set up the story for the hotly anticipated game in a pretty stylish manner. A story where it looks like Master Chief is on the run and being actively hunted by the authorities.
Rugby League fans -- especially those from Queensland -- will be heading to Sydney Olympic Park for different reasons this weekend, but if you're in Sydney and you're looking for something to do, the EB Games Expo is a pretty solid way to kill some time. The doors opened at 9am this morning and will close at 9pm tonight -- the same will occur tomorrow, and on Sunday it will be open from 9am to 4pm.
I dropped by the event last night to check out some of the games. Rise of the Tomb Raider was playable at the Xbox booth, and it looks utterly gorgeous. The new Tomb Raider game promises more tombs to raid, which is basically all I wanted from the previous game, so consider me pumped.
Halo 5 is also playable, and they've put together 24 networked Xbox Ones (all rocking the fancy new Elite controllers) so you can get your hands on the brand new Warzone mode, which has vehicles, weapon purchasing, AI minions to kill and large maps to traverse. It's actually really fun, which isn't something I thought I'd say. It might have been more fun because my team (with my help) dominated, but who can tell. Definitely worth checking out if you have the time.
They've set up three screens and a racing wheel/chair so that people can experience a wide angle Forza 6, and it looks utterly gorgeous. Also on the Xbox booth was Cuphead, NBA 2K16, FIFA 16 and more.
The Sony booth takes up stacks of space, and with good reason. They have 40 PlayStation 4s setup so people can play the Hoth-based Walker Assault mission from Star Wars Battlefront. It's pretty awesome, the sound is brilliant, and if you're lucky you can play as Luke Skywalker and just shred fools. I did, and I was able to annihilate the Empire because Luke is a one hit kill monster. The beta for this is just around the corner though -- it's dropping on October 8 -- so you're probably better (ha) off focusing your attention on other things!
For example, Sony's brought PlayStation VR to the Expo. You can play two different demos, and I tried them both. The Deep is largely uninteractive but utterly gorgeous, putting you in a shark cage which lowers into the ocean. The London Heist uses Move controllers to replicate your hands, allowing you to grab things and manipulate them. It's sort of brilliant, and multiple times during a shootout (where you have to grab new clips from the table and stuff them in your empty gun) I nearly fell through a desk which didn't exist. The headset is light enough to be negligible, and people who wear glasses can leave them on while playing.
Sony has Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 multiplayer as well, all part of their attempt to make sure Xbox doesn't have any of the biggest titles as their lead platform. Street Fighter V is playable as well, alongside a slew of other titles from both first party and third party publishers.
Ubisoft splashed out big, and word is The Division is playable at the event. So too is Just Dance 2016, and you'll able to hear it from miles away. Assassin's Creed Syndicate is repping that English gangster life, and Rainbow Six Siege is playable, though the beta is still on so I'm not sure why you'd travel all the way to Homebush for that.
There's rides, and panels and shows and all sorts of other stuff to see at the show as well, and the cosplayers always put on a great show. I'm on a panel at 8pm-9pm in the Bethesda booth tonight, so if you're in Homebush at the that time you should come out and see me.
If you're planning on heading to Sydney Olympic Park this weekend, let us know in the comments below!
Everyone's favourite hugger Zangief will appear in Street Fighter V, to the surprise of nobody at all.
Zangief was revealed at IgroMir, a Russian games expo being held this weekend in Moscow. For those who haven't played any previous Street Fighter games, Zangief is a Russian fighter who specialises in hugging and spinning around like a top. In the masterpiece film Street Fighter he is the only character that demonstrates any growth, making him the film's real hero.
Street Fighter V is due for release in the first quarter of 2016.
You might recall a few months ago that Derek Smart (yes that Derek Smart) found himself dumped as a backer of Star Citizen following some self-aggrandizing -- yet strangely pointed -- blog posts regarding concerns for the game.
Your boy Joabo was one of the few who backed Derek Smart on this, mostly because,
If anyone knows what a space game which is biting off more than it can chew looks like, it's Derek Smart. If smart wasn't already a word in English, we could probably describe creating a Space Game You Can't Possibly Finish as 'Smarting'. And in all honesty, it seems like Star Citizen is Smarting hard.
Most people defending Star Citizen seemed more concerned with attacking the player and not the ball, so to speak, highlighting Derek Smart's many hilarious failures in an effort to discredit him while ignoring what are some fairly relevant concerns.
Those concerns have reared their heads again today thanks to a lengthy, revelatory article on The Escapist featuring comments from many former and current staff members of CIG.
The piece, which you can read in full, sources nine people, apparently none of whom are Derek Smart. And the concerns raised are... terrifying if true.
"$90 million for what he's pitching, even with a competent leadership, you couldn't do," CS1 wrote. "The thing you have to remember about Chris Roberts is that, before this, he hadn't made a game in 12 years. He has no concept of what can and can't be done today with that amount of money, or for a game like this. Chris Roberts hadn't made a game in 12 years, and he was actively ignoring the input of people who have been in and a part of the industry that entire time."
Allegations of toxicity from senior members of staff, massive salaries and rampant scope creep are explored within the article. It's a very thorough piece of reporting in some areas, but it's downright off in others.
A lot of statements are quotes, sourced and all, but some of the most inflammatory claims are un-sourced. Maybe the author got carried away with their own rhetoric in an alarming fashion, but it looks exactly like the old journalist trick designed to give the un-sourced, not quoted parts of the story the same weight as the other elements. It's a special sort of horseshit which has no place in a story like this.
Shady elements of the story aside, there are some strong allegations made using many sources. And Chris Roberts' response takes basically the worst possible tack.
In the 5800 word response, Roberts spends more than half his time specifically attacking the author of the article and Derek Smart. He references tweets and alleges political motivations and spends far too much time attacking the author. Less than half of what he writes actually addresses the claims being presented to him.
Instead of obsessing over the motivations of the author and their connection to Derek Smart, Roberts should have responded directly to the claims (his responses are fine, and valid) and let other people do the rest of it.
For example, another employee named Thomas Hennessy explained his positive experience working at CIG in a post on reddit. Others too have posted their own refutations regarding, at least, the claims of toxicity within the office. There is clearly a lot of positivity for Star Citizen, from backers and staff alike. So attacking people who ask pointed, relevant questions does nothing except lend a degree of authenticity to their claims.
Some will side with The Escapist, others with Chris Roberts and CIG. Based on his response, it's clear that Roberts is tired of responding to posts like these, and it's hard to fault him for it. I remain optimistic yet wary about the reality of Star Citizen's release. Where do you sit?
*Update* User and Star Citizen fan DAwGia has pointed out the most egregious, inflammatory claims -- those which were un-sourced -- may have been pulled directly from recruitment and company review site "Glassdoor".
Reviews left for Cloud Imperium Games echo claims written in the article on the Escapist, and it appears after some preliminary research that anyone can post a review while claiming to be a current employee at a company simply by signing up to the site. Glassdoor analyses submitted reviews, but according to their community guidelines anonymity is key to their principles. Further, Glassdoor remains neutral 'in all cases of dispute and do not act as the finder of fact', which calls to question what it is they analyse in the anonymous reviews left on the site.
The reviews used were posted days ago and are repeated word for word within The Escapist article, although always phrased as 'it was claimed' and shadily attributed to the actual sources used in the news post. This is why you don't use unattributable quotes in your otherwise (seemingly) well-researched and well-sourced article.
The Humble Bundle will provide users with a $12USD-a-month subscription service called The Humble Monthly Bundle.
The Humble Bundle started out as a way for indie developers to sell their games while also giving to charity. It has since morphed into some sort of storefront, but the games are cheap and typically DRM free, so it's hard to fault it.
The store outlined what subscribers would receive for their money, telling IGN that you will get an average of six games a month. You get;
1 "hot title" game that's less than a year old
1 "highly-acclaimed" game that's one to two years old.
1-2 hit indie games
1-2 "hidden gems" from developers
Robert Bowling, VP and Creative Director at Humble Bundle, explained the reasoning behind the move. "While the typical Humble Bundle is a fantastic way to get games you may have missed when they first came out, the Humble Monthly is a highly curated collection of our favorite games, new and classic, sent to you directly every month."
Does this seem off to anyone else? So $12 a month gets you six games of varying quality that you may or may not already own (plus 5% goes to charity). It's not like they're actually sending anything other than an email. This isn't Lootbox.
It seems like a pretty hefty gamble, and you're giving far less to charity than the default setting in a bundle is. There's also no way to tell the Humble Bundle how much you want to go to the developers and how much remains a 'Humble Tip'.
If you decide you want in, you can do so here and you'll get Legends of Grimrock II immediately. Which is an awesome game. But you're probably better off putting money on the Cowboys to win the NRL Grand Final because a dugong predicted they will.
The longer the Assassin's Creed series goes on, the more it has shifted away from its core gameplay. Black Flag was a fantastically immersive title, but more so in its naval component than the regular Assassin's Creed gameplay. Syndicate seeks to right the missteps of the series by focusing on improving the core gameplay loop that it's had from the beginning.
Syndicate has a huge game world, and after a couple of hours of hands-on time, it was clear that I hadn't even come close to scratching the surface of the various activities in the 19th century game world. Here's a tease from my preview:
The plot is carried forward by twins Jacob and Evie Frye, whose dynamic is quite endearing. They riff off each other really well, with a lighter tone overall and plenty of playful banter, despite the high stakes. The backstory is that all of London is owned and has been controlled by Templars for the last century, so the assassins tend to steer clear and stick to the outskirts. But the ambitious twins aren’t about to stand for that.
From what I played, switching between Jacob and Evie didn’t drastically change the gameplay; in fact, it didn’t change much at all. In terms of the progression system, I spied character-specific upgrades alongside the bulk of skills that were shared between the two, so those different play styles may come later in the game.
Have you been playing the Rainbow Six Siege beta? We certainly have, and it's great, but also not without its fair share of bugs. This is why it's great news that Ubisoft has announced the closed beta will be extended beyond its intended end date and will board up on Sunday. If you haven't got a key yet, those playing have been sent four more keys to get more people testing out the game before the beta closes.
I've got spare PC keys, so if you don't have one yet and want to take Siege for a spin on the keyboard/mouse-wielding platform, hit me up in the comments below. On a recent blog post, Ubisoft pledged to let players know how feedback and telemetry data has impacted the game for the final version.
If you are playing, the blog also announces a Double Renown event that kicks off at midday on Saturday (if my EST to AEST conversion is correct). Renown is used to unlock operators and attachments, so it's definitely worth playing during this time if you want to try new things.
You're bound to encounter some problems (Joab and I have encountered a few), but Ubisoft has a list of workarounds for some of the bigger ones. If you do end up playing, let us know what you think in the comments below. You can also read my preview here.
Remember when buying a game was as simple as deciding that you wanted it, so you went out and bought it? Well, it's probably an overreaction but it does feel a little weird that a release plan for a game requires more than a simple date. And if there's time, maybe a price. With the next Hitman game recently being pushed to March 11th 2016, we now have all the details surrounding the impending release. With everything covered from the 'Intro Pack' to something called 'Upgrade Pack', click through to read more than you probably should about an upcoming release plan.
Perhaps what makes the release of Hitman a little strange is the fact that the game will receive monthly content after the initial release. Which, makes the launch version of the game the 'Intro Pack'. Now, we're not sure as to why it's being dubbed 'Intro', because even though the game will only come with a handful of locations and campaign missions, both Square Enix and Io Interactive have gone to great lengths to ensure us that these levels are huge. So big in fact that they dwarf all previous Hitman games in terms of size, freedom, and variety.
Okay, so in addition to the 'Intro Pack' you can also shell out for the 'Upgrade Pack' which will entitle you to the monthly campaign and online content for the three month period following the initial release. Which also includes new large open-world areas to explore.
And for those that want all of the content you can opt for 'The Full Experience' which gets you everything. Does any of this sound confusing? Well, the following info-graphic should explain it a lot better. Note that all prices are in USD.
On the plus size, pre-ordering the game will get you access to the upcoming PlayStation 4 and PC beta.
Next time you turn on your PlayStation 4, expect to download an update that will bring the system software to version 3.0. It's not a big download, comparatively speaking, and weighs in at 250.3MB. This latest update is firmly focused on offering new ways for players to connect, with improvements to the social connectivity, all of which you can see after the jump.
There's a new Events app, a dedicated PlayStation Plus section, and the option to stream directly to YouTube. That's just the shortlist, though. You can read the full breakdown below:
Events: A new Events app has been added to PS4, which is accessible from the home screen. This provides an overview of activities taking place in the games most played, as well as official broadcasts. For example, this week there is a double XP racing event in Driveclub and a Team of the Week Event in FIFA 16, for which players can register directly from the Events app. Once registered, utilise the auto-boot functionality to set the PS4 to automatically turn on and launch the game and Event at the Event start time. Stay tuned for new gaming events and broadcasts.
Communities: PS4 users will have the ability to create and join communities based around shared interests, such as games, genres, and more. Communities include a message board with general discussion, screenshots shared by players, and the ability to join parties/games. The Communities for owned games can be found on its live detail page, as well as from friends that have joined in the Friends app.
PlayStation Plus: This is a new dedicated section to all things PlayStation Plus, which can be accessed from the PS4 home screen. It allows players to easily manage memberships, see the monthly free games to download and deals for PS Plus members, and all the games redeemed through PS Plus on PS4. In addition, online storage on PS4 for members has increased to 10GB.
Sharing video clips to Twitter: Video clips can now be shared directly from the PS4 to Twitter. All video clips are maximum 10 seconds — to trim longer clips, double tap the SHARE button to start recording a video, and press it again to stop.
YouTube live: Livestream directly from the PS4 to YouTube. All livestreams will be made viewable across YouTube.
Request to Share Play and Broadcast: Been dying to try out a friend’s new game? Now players can Request to start a Share Play session or watch friends play via a Broadcast.
Live from PlayStation: Keep up with the hottest gaming trends by viewing the most popular broadcasts, video clips, and screenshots uploaded from around the world.
PNG Screenshots: For high quality game screenshots, images can now be saved in PNG instead of JPEG. To access this feature, press Share > Share Settings > Screenshot Settings > Image Format.
Favourite Groups: Favourite Groups is a new addition to the Friends app, making it easier for players to access groups of people they play with frequently. Already available are groups for Call of Duty, Rocket League, and (of course) Destiny fireteam. Once players are in the favourite group, they can see the online status for players, the games they’re playing, and the option to message or chat in party.
Stickers: From the PS4 system’s Messages app, there is a new option for Stickers. The 3.00 update will contain stickers themed around Uncharted 4, Knack, Little Big Planet3, Resogun, and more.
For those with PlayStation Plus, the following games will be available for download as part of your subscription from Tuesday the 6th of October.
Broken Age (PS4/PSV)
Super Meat Boy (PS4/PSV)
Unmechanical Extended (PS4/PS3)
Kung Fu Rabbit (PSV/PS3)
The Neverhood claymation game may be close to 20 years old, but that hasn't stopped the release of its spiritual successor, Armikrog. Developer Pencil Test Studios has painstakingly utilised stop-motion animation to create a Wallace & Gromit-like game world.
Players take on the role of cosmic explorer Tommynaut and his blind-but-talking dog (of course) Beak-Beak as they attempt to escape from the deadly fortress of Armikrog. Puzzles and odd inhabitants reportedly abound in this point-and-click adventure that's built by the creative team behind both The Neverhood and Earthworm Jim.
Armikrog is available for PC, Mac and Linux from your favourite digital distributor. Check out the launch trailer below for a taste of what to expect.
The latest Fallout 4 S.P.E.C.I.A.L video is all about turning on the charm. The level of charm where it's fairly easy to convince a large lumbering oaf to part ways with a weapon in exchange for some 'magic beans'. Or, to simply talk your way out of being shot in the face for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or better yet, just enough charisma to make you loved by both man and beast -- something that would definitely come in handy in the post-apocalyptic radiation soaked world of Fallout 4.
Call of Duty: Black Ops III is coming later this month, so in the countdown to launch, Activision has released a new trailer. Instead of focusing on the Zombies or PvP modes, this trailer is firmly focused on teasing the narrative of Black Ops III. You can check it out after the jump.
The trailer gives us the first glimpse of a familiar face (at least in terms of the actor) who looks like the main villain of the storyline. Christopher Meloni may not be listed on the game's IMDb page, but the character at the end sure looks and sounds like the familiar "that guy" actor from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and True Blood.
Better still, the trailer has a Deus Ex meets Heart of Darkness feel to it, the former in terms of the human augmentations and the latter in terms of a villain who appears to have forgotten what it means to be good. You can check out the trailer below, and you can pick up Black Ops III on the 6th of November for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
And that also applies to the Xbox App on Windows 10, which now also supports up to 12 people vying for vocal real-estate in the forever polite and cordial verbal discourse that makes up socialising online whilst playing games. This is an increase from 8, and with the new Warzone mode in Halo 5 supporting teams sizes of 12 it makes sense.
In addition to this update which will happen server-side and wont require anything on the player's part, those with access to the New Xbox One Experience Preview will also get access to the following new features.
Party text chat adds more communication options. In the New Xbox One Experience, text chat joins voice chat as a way to communicate with your friends. At the bottom of the ‘Your Party’ page, you will see a button to ‘Show text chat.’ This will let you participate in the conversation. Party text chat will also come to the Beta Xbox App for Windows 10.
A streamlined Game DVR experience. We have combined the functionality of the Game DVR snap app and the former Upload app into one easy-to-use app called Game DVR. In full screen mode, you can use this app to view your game clips and screenshot captures. When snapped, you can use Game DVR to start or stop recordings.
New animated avatars. They are back and better than ever. You showed us that you are passionate about Avatars with many requests on Xbox Feedback. The new avatars will be animated on your profile and will start showing up in other new places in the new experience. If you prefer a gamerpic, you can easily switch your image.
Updated menu for quick access to common actions. The menu button on your controller lets you pin an app or game to Home, launch a recently played game, or quit an app or game with just the touch of a button.
Access new settings in the Guide. Adding to settings already included in the guide, like adjusting the headset volume, you can now turn your console off or restart your console directly from the Guide.