Showing: 370 RESULTS
News Nintendo Nintendo Switch Videos Wii U

GameXplain Has Released an Incredibly Extensive Analysis of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s E3 Footage

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was the hottest game at E3 this year, thanks to some lengthy and impressive show floor demos and hours of livestream footage showing off the game’s immersive overworld. Because there was so much Breath of the Wild content shown off at E3, it has taken the talented team at GameXplain over two months to break it all down and analyze it thoroughly, but they’ve finally finished, and the result is a whopping two hour long in-depth analysis video. If you want to see all the secrets that Breath of the Wild is hiding, grab some popcorn and click above to watch the feature length video!

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict

Top

News Videos

Hideo Kojima Discusses E3 and the Death Stranding Reveal in the Latest Episode of HideoTube

Hideo Kojima left his longtime employer, Konami, late last year, and began a new YouTube video series called HideoTube shortly after. In this series, Kojima sits down with other members of Kojima Productions to discuss just about whatever pops into mind, whether it’s video games, his favorite movies of 2015 or something else. Kojima has released the fourth episode of HideoTube, featuring Kojima himself and novelist Kenji Yano (who recently joined Kojima Productions) to discuss E3, the making of the Death Stranding trailer (and the fear that it would leak ahead of time), and more. You can give it a watch by clicking above!

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict

Top

Articles Columns Features Nintendo Switch Wii U

What’s Special About Zelda: Breath of the Wild is That Every Player Creates Their Own Story

My experience with
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild at E3 wasn’t very epic or heroic. Most of my time was spent orienting myself within the game’s environment. I dashed through some trees and climbed a few rocks, scouring for food and killing Moblins here and there. After one of the booth workers introduced me to fast travel, I teleported to a tower and promptly ran off it and died. Twice. All of this while Link only wore a pair of underwear.

But though my
Breath of the Wild story mainly consists of accidental suicides and aimless meandering, it is still my story. Others roasted apples, some climbed mountains, and a lucky few even stumbled upon bosses. No demo was like the other; each player’s adventure was uniquely their own. Everybody had their own story to tell after playing the E3 demo. Strike that. Those fortunate enough to land a spot in the game’s seven-hour line had their own story to tell. The allure of a singular experience is what made The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild the breakout title of E3 2016, and it has also reinvigorated my adoration for this fabled franchise.

The sweeping landscapes in the game are certainly a key factor to its ecstatic response. Even though we’ve only seen a fraction of the game in action,
Breath of the Wild has already produced an iconic moment that will stick with franchise fans for years to come: stepping out of the Shrine of Resurrection as the camera pans up to the distant horizon. It’s a distinctly cinematic sequence, complete with the game’s title fading in at the bottom-right corner as if to say “Welcome to Breath of the Wild.” The glimpses of Hyrule Castle and Death Mountain beyond the expanse of plains emphasize the grandeur of the overworld, and the gently stirring music cue adds to the serenity of the view. It’s momentous, a grand introduction to the game and one that many players at E3 swooned over.

And yet, while I cannot deny that I got goosebumps when I first stepped into the world of
Breath of the Wild, it’s far from the highlight of my time with the game. The theatricality of the introduction is stirring, but it is merely a teaser, a promise of the adventure to come. Once the logo fades away and the camera returns to Link, the world is free to explore. Forget branching paths, or even paths in general. You can set off in any direction, even right off the cliff. That’s where the genius of Breath of the Wild truly lies. Though there’s plenty to love about logo fade-ins and camera pans, the game’s personality is rooted in its moment-to-moment gameplay.

Nintendo seems to understand where the title’s true strength lies as well, as the company spent most of its E3 showcasing the variety of experiences available in
Breath of the Wild. Stealth! Shrines! Swashbuckling! But throughout all of the livestreaming, there was nary a peep about the plot. The developer has already announced that players can complete the game without even experiencing the story, a telling sign that it is putting less emphasis behind narrative drive, shifting its focus from the synopsis to the setting.

And, my, what a setting! The fact that Nintendo could woo the crowds by spending the better part of three days talking about a single video game speaks to the insane diversity within
Breath of the Wild. There is an incalculable number of activities in this game, from shield snowboarding to hang gliding, but the gargantuan world is ultimately characterized by the smallest of details, natural mechanics that add to one’s immersion in the moment. Gamnesia editor Alex Plant was attacked as he aimed a bomb arrow, and the explosive blew up and killed him. Shooting fire arrows at fish instantly cooks them. Wild animals flee for their lives when Link even makes a peep. And of course, there’s this…

That right there is a game mechanic that isn’t explicitly taught to the player, discovered naturally through continuous play.
Breath of the Wild is littered with little mind-blowing nuggets like that, sprinkling amusing revelations across the span of a grand epic. Every player at E3 had a story to tell, but within that story was an anecdote about a small discovery or a happy accident. It’s the little things that make Breath of the Wild what it is, and what it is will vary from player to player depending on their experience.

Breath of the Wild encourages experimentation by pouring character into the world and adding tweaks and ticks to its smallest features. That attention to detail enthralled me while playing the game at E3, but it didn’t become apparent to me until I listened to other people tell their own stories. Considering the likely possibility that the game’s entire world will be jam-packed with little details, then this is shaping up to be a Zelda adventure unlike any other. Everybody had their own story to tell at E3, but we only played a twenty-minute demo. Imagine the individual odysseys that a thirty or forty hour plus game can produce. It’s not just Zelda’s legend anymore. It’s all of ours, too.


No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News Xbox 360 Xbox One

Microsoft’s E3 2016 Media Briefing Was Their Most Viewed Live Event Ever

Microsoft held its annual E3 Media Briefing last month, unveiling the new Xbox One S, the upcoming Project Scorpio, the Xbox Play Anywhere program, custom controllers, and lots of exciting new games. This year’s show proved to be quite popular with fans, as Microsoft has written a blog declaring it their most viewed live event to date. The E3 Media Briefing itself was viewed over 6.6 million times, and the Xbox YouTube channel as a whole pulled in 27 million views during E3!

  • The Xbox E3 2016 Briefing was viewed over 6.6M times, an increase of 78% over last year and our most viewed live event to date.
  • During the week of E3, videos shared on the Xbox YouTube channel were viewed over 27M times, a massive increase of 184% over E3 2015.
  • Xbox received hundreds of E3 award nominations and wins from global outlets including IGN, Game Informer, Toronto Sun, USA Today, Atomix and Polygon.
  • In excess of 340,000 unique, customized controllers were created and saved in the all-new Xbox Design Lab.
  • The “Friendly Update” for Minecraft that delivered Minecraft Realms to mobile and Windows 10 devices, has seen over 4M people play together across Minecraft: Pocket Edition and Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition via Xbox Live.
  • Over 4M friendships were forged and 90M hours of multiplayer were played on Xbox Live during the week of E3 – that’s more friends than the whole population of Panama and over 10,000 years of consecutive gaming.
  • The response to the Halo Wars 2 Beta exceeded expectations with over 1M matches played, totaling more than 2M gameplay hours. The data and feedback gathered will play a crucial role in the development of the game, ensuring Halo Wars 2 is the RTS for everyone when it launches on Feb. 21, 2017.
  • In excess of 2M fans engaged with the newly launched Xbox Snapchat channel, checking out exclusive updates from the show floor and behind-the-scenes demos.
  • On Twitter, #XboxE3 was tweeted over 400K times throughout the course of E3, trended as the #1 topic worldwide for over an hour and a half, and was the most tweeted of any Xbox hashtag.

Source: Xbox Wire

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

3DS Indie News Nintendo Switch PC PlayStation 4 Virtual Reality Wii U Xbox One

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Dominated the E3 2016 Game Critics Awards

Last month, tens of thousands of video game industry members gathered in Los Angeles for E3 2016. The show floor featured a variety of playable games from publishers like Sony, Microsoft, Capcom, Ubisoft, and more, but one stood out above the rest. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was the only game Nintendo brought to the show floor, but it was the most talked about, most searched, and most popular game of E3.

With E3 in the rear view mirror, 40 global media outlets have teamed up to announce the winners of the annual Game Critics Awards, and
Breath of the Wild is the biggest winner. of all The latest Zelda game took home the coveted “Best of Show” award, as well the awards for “Best Console Game” and “Best Action/Adventure Game.” You can check out the full list of award-winning games below.

Best of Show
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)

– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)

– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)

– Sea of Thieves (Rare/Microsoft Studios)


The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)
– Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Original Game
– Abzu (Giant Squid/505 Games)

– Detroit: Become Human (Quantic Dream/Sony Interactive Ent.)


Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– Sea of Thieves (Rare/Microsoft Studios)

– We Happy Few (Compulsion Games)

Best Console Game
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)

– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)

– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)

– The Last Guardian (genDESIGN/Sony Interactive Ent.)


The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)

Best PC Game
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)


Civilization VI (Firaxis/2K)
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)

– GWENT: The Witcher Card Game (CD Projekt Red)

– Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III (Relic/Sega)

Best VR Game

Batman: Arkham VR (Rocksteady/WBIE)
– Resident Evil VII (Capcom)

– Star Trek: Bridge Crew (Red Storm/Ubisoft)

– The Unspoken (Insomniac/Oculus Studio)

– Wilson’s Heart (Twisted Pixel/Oculus Studio)

Best Hardware
– Oculus Touch (Oculus VR)


PlayStation VR (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
– Xbox One S (Microsoft)

Best Action Game

Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)
– Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (Infinity Ward/Activision)

– Gears of War 4 (The Coalition/Microsoft Studios)

– Lawbreakers (Boss Key/Nexon)

– Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Action/Adventure Game
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)

– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent)

– Mafia III (Hangar 13/2K)

– The Last Guardian (GenDesign/Sony Interactive Ent.)


The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)

Best RPG
– Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (Eidos Montreal/Square Enix)


Final Fantasy XV (Square Enix)
– South Park: The Fractured But Whole (Ubisoft SF/Ubisoft)

– Tyrrany (Obsidian/Paradox)

– Persona 5 (Atlus)

Best Racing Game

Forza Horizon 3 (Playground Games/Microsoft Studios)
– F1 2016 (Codemasters)

– Gran Turismo Sport (Polyphony Digital/Sony Interactive Ent.)

Best Sports Game
– FIFA 17 (EA Canada/EA)

– Madden NFL 17 (Tiburon/EA)

– Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 (Konami)


Steep (Ubisoft Annecy/Ubisoft)

Best Family Game
– LEGO Dimensions (TT Games/WBIE)

– LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens (TT Games/WBIE)


Skylanders: Imaginators (Toys for Bob/Activision)

Best Online Multiplayer
– Absolver (Sloclap/Devolver)

– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)

– Lawbreakers (Boss Key/Nexon)

– Sea of Thieves (RARE/Microsoft Studios)


Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Independent Game
– Absolver (Sloclap/Devoler)

– Abzu (Giant Squid/505)

– Cuphead (Studio MDHR)


Inside (Playdead)
– We Happy Few (Compulsion Games)

Special Commendation for Graphics


God of War

Source: Game Critics Awards

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News PC PlayStation 4 Xbox One

Activision’s CEO Says the Backlash Against COD: Infinite Warfare Has Changed Nothing About the Game

Activision’s CEO Eric Hirshberg has said that the online backlash against the reveal of the next Call of Duty title, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, has changed nothing about the game’s development. Speaking at an E3 interview earlier this month, Hirshberg said that Activision is “doing the same thing after the response as before, which is focusing on making a great game.”

Hirshberg pointed out that when the studio first went into a futuristic setting with Call of Duty: Black Ops II, players still purchased it despite its YouTube trailer having previously held the most dislikes before being ousted by Infinite Warfare. The backlash for IW does not seem to have extended to other metrics and platforms, such as preorder numbers or Facebook reactions, which Hirshberg indicates might mean the dislikes the game’s trailer received on YouTube are not indicative of the wider gaming demographic.

However, it is likely that many players are simply preordering or planning to purchase the game because it is being released in a bundle with a remastered version of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, which many gamers have reacted favorably to the announcement of. The remaster only comes in the bundle with Infinite Warfare, possibly artificially inflating the newer game’s preorder numbers.

Source: GameSpot

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

3DS Indie News PC PlayStation 4 Virtual Reality Wii U Xbox One

The Nominees for the Game Critics Awards’ Best Games of E3 Have Been Announced

The Game Critics Awards is an association made up of forty online video game publications that band together annually to give awards to the best games shown off at E3 every year. This year, the Game Critics Awards are dividing their awards into 16 different categories, such as “Best Console Game,” “Best Independent Game,” and “Best RPG,” with around four to five nominees for one award in each category. A few days ago, the association revealed this year’s nominees for the awards. This breakdown shows that Battlefield 1 has the largest amount of nominations, as the game received a nomination in five separate categories (including Game of the Show). Battlefield was closely followed by Dishonored 2 and Horizon Zero Dawn, which received four nominations apiece.

Some more data from the Game Critics Awards website reveals the fact that Electronic Arts is the studio that got the most nominations overall, with a total of ten nominations. Sony Computer Entertainment, the runner-up, received nine. By analyzing the nominations by platform, instead of by game studio, we see that games for PC garnered the most nominations by far, with fifty separate nominations. PlayStation 4 and Xbox One came close, with 48 and 43 nominations respectively, but the Wii U fell somewhat short, as the console only received six.

The full list of nominees can be read below:

Best of Show
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)
– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– Sea of Thieves (Rare/Microsoft Studios)
– The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)
– Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Original Game
– Abzu (Giant Squid/505 Games)
– Detroit: Become Human (Quantic Dream/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– Sea of Thieves (Rare/Microsoft Studios)
– We Happy Few (Compulsion Games)

Best Console Game
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)
– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– The Last Guardian (genDESIGN/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)

Best PC Game
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)
– Civilization VI (Firaxis/2K)
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)
– GWENT: The Witcher Card Game (CD Projekt Red)
– Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III (Relic/Sega)

Best VR Game
– Batman: Arkham VR (Rocksteady/WBIE)
– Resident Evil VII (Capcom)
– Star Trek: Bridge Crew (Red Storm/Ubisoft)
– The Unspoken (Insomniac/Oculus Studio)
– Wilson’s Heart (Twisted Pixel/Oculus Studio)

Best Hardware
– Oculus Touch (Oculus VR)
– PlayStation VR (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
– Xbox One S (Microsoft)

Best Action Game
– Battlefield One (DICE/EA)
– Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (Infinity Ward/Activision)
– Gears of War 4 (The Coalition/Microsoft Studios)
– Lawbreakers (Boss Key/Nexon)
– Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Action/Adventure Game
– Dishonored 2 (Arkane/Bethesda)
– Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla/Sony Interactive Ent)
– Mafia III (Hangar 13/2K)
– The Last Guardian (GenDesign/Sony Interactive Ent.)
– The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo)

Best RPG
– Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (Eidos Montreal/Square Enix)
– Final Fantasy XV (Square Enix)
– South Park: The Fractured But Whole (Ubisoft SF/Ubisoft)
– Tyrrany (Obsidian/Paradox)
– Persona 5 (Atlus)

Best Fighting Game
– Absolver (Sloclap/Devolver)
– Injustice 2 (NetherRealm/WBIE)
– Tekken 7 (Bandai Namco)
– The King of Fighters XIV (SNK/Atlus)

Best Racing Game
– Forza Horizon 3 (Playground Games/Microsoft Studios)
– F1 2016 (Codemasters)
– Gran Turismo Sport (Polyphony Digital/Sony Interactive Ent.)

Best Sports Game
– FIFA 17 (EA Canada/EA)
– Madden NFL 17 (Tiburon/EA)
– Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 (Konami)
– Steep (Ubisoft Annecy/Ubisoft)

Best Strategy Game
– Civilization VI (Firaxis/2K)
– GWENT: The Witcher Card Game (CD Projekt Red)
– Halo Wars 2 (Creative Assembly/343/Microsoft Studios)
– Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III (Relic/Sega)

Best Family Game
– LEGO Dimensions (TT Games/WBIE)
– LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens (TT Games/WBIE)
– Skylanders: Imaginators (Toys for Bob/Activision)

Best Online Multiplayer
– Absolver (Sloclap/Devolver)
– Battlefield 1 (DICE/EA)
– Lawbreakers (Boss Key/Nexon)
– Sea of Thieves (RARE/Microsoft Studios)
– Titanfall 2 (Respawn/EA)

Best Independent Game
– Absolver (Sloclap/Devoler)
– Abzu (Giant Squid/505)
– Cuphead (Studio MDHR)
– Inside (Playdead)
– We Happy Few (Compulsion Games)

What do you guys think? Which of these games is your “Game of the Show”? Does Battlefield 1 deserve the top spot? Let us know in the comments below!

The winners will be announced on the official website for the Game Critics Awards on Tuesday, July 5th.

Source: Game Critics Awards

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

Articles Columns Features News PC PlayStation 4 Virtual Reality Xbox One

Resident Evil VII Shows That Capcom is Finally Prioritizing Horror Over Huge Sales

Resident Evil and survival-horror were once virtually synonymous, but Capcom’s beloved franchise saw a distinct shift in gameplay with Resident Evil 4, and each main series entry since has been more and more action-focused. While this helped popularize the series and attract new fans, it also left many veteran players feeling alienated. Capcom took note of fan frustration when Resident Evil 6 received lukewarm reviews and undersold expectations, and they promised to do more to appeal to their core base.

As such, I was intrigued (but skeptical) when a reliable source leaked that
a horror-focused Resident Evil VII would appear at E3 this year. While I trusted the source, I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of Capcom truly taking the series back to its horror roots. I fully expected Capcom to take a half-measure, scaling the action back to the level of Resident Evil 4 or perhaps Resident Evil: Revelations, but I was pleasantly surprised to be wrong. Based on what we’ve seen so far, Capcom is making a real effort to welcome in horror fans with open arms.

The game’s reveal trailer at E3 was simple, but effective, focusing largely on nameless characters as they explored a creepy and mysterious house. Up until the title flashed across the screen, many viewers didn’t even realize they were watching a Resident Evil trailer. Contrast that with the reveal trailer for Resident Evil 6, which was packed with machine gun fire, impressive displays of melee prowess, explosions aplenty, and a heaping helping of key plot points.

From a marketing standpoint, Capcom’s approach to
Resident Evil VII is drastically different from Resident Evil 6. E3 is one of the biggest stages in gaming (even if its popularity took a bit of a hit this year), which makes such a huge marketing shift a risky move on Capcom’s part.

Playing the demo, you’ll immediately notice a major change from previous
Resident Evil titles: the entire game is in first-person perspective. The classic Resident Evil games used a system of fixed camera angles to emulator horror movies, but the more action-fueled style of Resident Evil 4, 5, and 6 required Capcom to rework the camera and controls, shifting instead to an over-the-shoulder third-person perspective. With Resident Evil VII, Capcom is aiming for an immersive horror experience, and that means changing up the camera to compliment the new gameplay once again.

“The final game is also entirely in first-person perspective. This is driven by the concept of Resident Evil 7, which is a return to horror. At this particular time in games, it was determined that first-person was the most advantageous way to present horror to the player. When confronting the enemy, there’s no barrier between you and the enemy. This also applies to exploration and gimmicks and traps and things like that. They felt that it really gets you up close and personal with everything, which adds to that horror element.”
— Producer Masachika Kawata

This, too, was a risk on Capcom’s part. Rather than simply catering to their existing fan base, the developers focused on finding the best way to present horror to the player. Creating a main series entry with a first-person perspective is a bold move that could turn off some existing fans, but it’s also a big step towards courting horror fans who have either long since stopped playing
Resident Evil or never played it in the first place. It’s easy to see how fans of cancelled projects like the immensely popular Silent Hills or Allison Road could view Resident Evil VII as a potential replacement. Making the entire game compatible with PlayStation VR adds further immersion and gives Capcom the chance to establish itself as a leader in virtual reality horror, which is sure to be a hot market.

The actual gameplay of the demo is centered around exploration and mystery (and fans are still desperately attempting to figure out some of its secrets), reminding players of the series’ roots in the original game while still feeling fresh. We know that the content available in the demo won’t actually be in the final game, but it was designed to introduce players to the atmosphere of
Resident Evil VII and to give them a similar feeling to the full game. Capcom intentionally left combat out of the demo altogether (another risky move), and Producer Masachika Kawata even downplayed its prominence (and especially the prominence of guns) when asked about the role of combat in the finished game.

“One of the main gameplay elements that is not in [the demo] is, as you stated, combat. In the final game, of course, there will be many types of game mechanics including combat, perhaps some gun-play. One of the things I would like to emphasize about this is that it’s not always about going in guns blazing. It might actually be to your advantage to try to run away from combat at certain times, or use items against your enemies in a different way. This is to say that trying to survive the horror, the survival horror, is a key element to Resident Evil 7.”
— Producer Masachika Kawata

While some players are concerned that the demo doesn’t represent the kind of gameplay we’ll see in the final game (it wouldn’t be the first time a promising
demo turned into something disappointing), creating a separate teaser experience allowed Capcom to keep the game’s story entirely under wraps. Players had a pretty good idea of what to expect heading into Resident Evil 6, and they also had the comfort of powerhouse characters like Leon and Chris to give them a sense of familiarity and empowerment. With Resident Evil VII, Capcom wants players to set aside the story and characters they know and love, entering the game with a clean slate.

Setting aside fan favorite characters for a new, less powerful protagonist is yet another sign that Capcom is prioritizing quality horror gameplay over sales potential. As Kawata explained to GameSpot, “If you don’t know what’s going to happen to you, or the person you’re taking the role of in the game, it’s much scarier than if you’re an iconic character who you know is eventually going to make it through the day.”

Frankly, it’s hard to fear a game when you’re playing as a muscular, machine gun-wielding,
boulder-punching special ops agent who has already survived several zombie apocalypses. Capcom’s even doing away with its ever-controversial quick time events, which were often used to showcase the action of its star characters in a cinematic fashion.

We can’t really say for sure what
Resident Evil VII holds until we get a good look at true gameplay, but Capcom’s approach to the game’s unveiling is cause for significant optimism. For the first time in a long time, every move from Capcom looks like a legitimate attempt to cater to horror fans instead of treating them like an afterthought.


No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

Articles Features PC PlayStation 4 Xbox One

Watch Dogs 2 Finally Shows the Side of Ubisoft that isn’t so Self-Serious

“And yes, you can do parkour in Crocs.”

That’s the one line that has continued to stick in my head from an E3 show floor demonstration of
Watch Dogs 2. But a number of other moments stood out to me during the demo as well, such as a political scandal involving digital corruption and the pursuit of online followers being used as a game mechanic. The Watch Dogs franchise is upping its focus on tech culture with its sequel, but they’ve also replaced the previous game’s straight-faced self-importance with goofy self-awareness. Ubisoft’s deliberate tonal shift of the Watch Dogs franchise marks a clear break from the publisher’s homogeneously serious demeanor, and that’s a change worth getting excited for.

From
Assassin’s Creed to Tom Clancy, the Ubisoft wheelhouse has produced an overabundance of brooding men with hoods and guns living in very brown worlds. That isn’t to say that these games would be better off with a different sensibility. However, the company’s lack of tonal variety has begun to cannibalize itself, with most of its properties lacking distinctive identities. Though some of them can be extremely entertaining, very few are singular. The first Watch Dogs suffered from falling under that same grim Ubisoft umbrella.

Considering the Snowden leaks in the year prior to
Watch Dogs‘ release, the game had the zeitgeist on its side. But Watch Dogs had all the thematic depth of a sixteen year-old learning how to use Java who just watched V for Vendetta for the first time. Aiden Pearce, the game’s gloomy protagonist, was the wet blanket on the game’s open world freedom, serving as a seemingly endless fountain of dull melodrama. Despite great sales numbers, the game quickly fell out of the public eye. In a market of gloomy metropolitan crime stories, Watch Dogs ended up blending in with the pack in the long run.

When
Watch Dogs‘ inevitable sequel was announced, my gut reaction was to turn my nose up and sneer. I could gladly go the rest of my life without being sold another boring Aiden Pearce redemption narrative. But my time with Watch Dogs 2 at E3 was a wake-up call to the potential of this franchise. Though I remain skeptical of the game, it’s worth getting excited for the franchise’s willingness to change and the potential for Ubisoft to (gasp!) have some fun.

“And yes, you can do parkour in Crocs.”

The tonal difference between
Watch Dogs 2 and its predecessor is most evident in its change of setting. Chicago has an unfortunate reputation for crime, and the first Watch Dogs aimed to imbue that societal climate in both its narrative and world. However, the setting ended up being a means to an end, selected in the interest of a blandly realized metropolitan environment and an uninteresting crime story. What’s more, the swift oscillations between open world civilian murder and attempts at pathos provided the game with an ugly, at times insulting, tonal inconsistency.

But while Chicago is known for high crime rates, San Francisco is known for high rental rates. Gentrification has plagued the city as the economic foothold of tech companies have increased exponentially over the years, dramatically dividing the local population between lower income natives and well-off tech workers. It is a serious issue, though it doesn’t have the gravitas of murders in Chicago.

But with morbidity off the shelf,
Watch Dogs 2 makes room for levity. In the first Watch Dogs, hacking was used in gameplay as a way to interact with the environment and in the story for its real-world associations with corruption and anarchy. But the sequel is taking the stereotypes associated with hacking and blowing them up to eleven, projecting a satirical exaggeration of Silicon Valley tech culture onto the game’s environment and characters. Just look at this guy.



How could that possibly be taken seriously? I mean, how can he even see through those glasses when his eyes are hashtags? Compare Aiden Pearce’s muddy bandana and trench coat to this… Vape Nation Hot Topic anarchist. Pearce is a bulky white guy that looks like he got dressed in the dark. Meanwhile, the character design of Wrench—yes, that’s his name—is an amalgamation of the tackiest of tech culture, akin to a river of bad memes filtered through the wardrobe of an edgy teenager. That sudden satirical bite is deliberate in its silliness, and it marks one of the broadest and quickest aesthetic shifts ever seen in a video game franchise.

It’s impressive how quickly
Watch Dogs 2 has established a personality of its own. Considering the bad taste that the first Watch Dogs left in many consumers’ mouths, the hype that the sequel has generated is a telling sign of the market’s desire for new perspectives and ideas. Like Battlefield 1, it’s practically a soft reboot of the franchise, and, for Ubisoft, that’s an unprecedented move.

During the show floor demo, the developers approached a dog in-game and made a point that they wanted to make sure
“you could watch dogs in
Watch Dogs.” Whether or not that humor works is subjective, but its sheer existence is kind of exciting. The stale Ubisoft formula may just become a little fresher with Watch Dogs 2. All it needs is a bit of character.

“And yes, you can do parkour in Crocs.”

It’s a start, Ubisoft.


No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News Nintendo Switch Wii U

Nintendo Made Zelda: Breath of the Wild So Revolutionary in Order to Attract New Players

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild surprised everybody at E3 2016 by being so drastically different from other titles in the series. The game’s open world and RPG elements are causing people to compare it to other titles outside of the series, such as Skyrim and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.

Some people have even speculated that Nintendo might be catering to what Western audiences prefer, since the series has statistically had higher sales here than in Japan. However, Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime has confirmed that this is not the case. Instead, Nintendo is trying to make a game that will engage long-time fans as well as new ones, regardless of the market.

Reggie talked about how Nintendo tried to strike a balance of keeping older players engaged while bringing new players into the series. This meant ditching some of Zelda‘s previously established conventions. He also explained that the Western and Eastern markets aren’t so different from each other, and that games someone would generally think are for a Western audience, such as the online multiplayer shooter Splatoon, generally do well in Japanese markets as well.

“The Zelda formula is well known. You continue down a path, you battle in a dungeon, you get an item, you’re going to need that item for the next dungeon, and so forth. We think that for today’s player… that formula potentially needed to be upended — that we needed to introduce new elements in order to bring new players in. But we needed to do it thoughtfully in order to maintain the current player.

“Behaviorally, the Japanese home market and the West, aren’t so different that the tastes are fundamentally polar. A great example of this is Splatoon. [An online multiplayer shooter is] something that you would associate with the West, and yet in Japan the amount of players playing Splatoon, the amount of games sold relative to the install base of Wii U, is better than the US performance. It all comes down to this: is it fun? Is it compelling? Is it unique? Does it provide something to the player that they really relate to?” — Reggie Fils-Aime

What do you guys think? Do you feel that Nintendo does a good job of making games that multiple audiences can enjoy? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

Source: The Verge

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News Nintendo Switch Videos Wii U

The Song of Time is Secretly Hidden Within the Demo of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Nintendo stepped back from hosting a conventional press conference and their signature Directs for this year’s E3, opting instead to feature a handful of their upcoming titles through two days of Treehouse Live streaming from the show floor. Gamers were finally given an extensive look at The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild after over a year of silence since the 2014 Game Awards, and more secrets from the game continue to surface today.

YouTubers have discovered a familiar tune from the series hidden within the E3 demo of
Breath of the Wild. Longtime fans will no doubt recognize it as the “Song of Time” from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, though the song can’t be typically heard without speeding up footage. Check it out above!

The “Song of Time” reappears as the background music for the dilapidated Temple of Time, albeit it being a choppier, hollower rendition of the famous track in its original rhythm—fitting, considering the ruined state the Temple is in within the game’s setting. The music direction in
Breath of the Wild will make for a more minimalistic soundtrack for its overworld, rather than using traditionally composed themes for the various and diverse areas within the world of Hyrule like in previous Zelda titles, so it is nonetheless impressive to see fans recognize and identify these subtle audio cues from what little has been shown of the game itself.

This isn’t the first time Nintendo experimented with music from the
Zelda series in this fashion. A prime example of this would be the “Ballad of the Goddess”—the featured theme song of Skyward Sword—which was discovered to be “Zelda’s Lullaby” arranged in reverse.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launches in March 2017 for both the Wii U and NX. Preorder it now via Amazon, GameStop, and Best Buy!

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict

Top

Articles Columns Features Indie PC PlayStation 4 Xbox One

Our Team’s Favorite Indie Games from E3 2016

Every E3 comes and goes making huge waves with some of gamers’ most anticipated titles, but if there’s one scene in gaming flourishing brighter than ever before, it’s independent game development. This year several of us from Gamnesia had the opportunity to play a wide variety of indie games on the show floor, and four of us decided to come together to highlight our personal favorite games from E3 2016. Head inside to read all about them!

Theo Schultz: Below

Below is a challenging, no hand-holding top-down exploration game with minimal to no direction. Not unlike the original Legend of Zelda, you start off into a world with no explanation of who you are or what you’re supposed to do, just that have a trusty sword in hand and there’s a cliff-side and a cave to scale or dive into as you choose. Regardless of the route you choose, the call of the unknown beckons, with items, creatures, and secrets to be discovered around every turn.

Outside of the reward of delving further and further into the depths of
Below, the game has a simple yet fun crafting system to put to use all the collectibles you find along the way. As with many games, there are only a finite number of item slots, so finding combinations of common items can yield much more useful items such as torches and bandages. And you’ll find that you will need them, as there are many ways to die in Below. Not only does one need to watch their overall health, but you can just as easily die of starvation, dehydration, or bleeding to death unless you can figure out a solution.

The challenge combined the allure of the unknown and the beautiful and simple art style make
Below a very memorable title from both E3 2015 and 2016. Below launches on PC and Xbox One as a limited-time console exclusive later this summer, 2016.

Colin McIsaac: Chambara

Chambara is a high-contrast action game which pits up to four players against one another for short bouts of stealthy, close-range combat. Inspired by the eponymous category of black-and-white samurai films, Chambara primarily features harsh black-and-white tones. It’s a design choice that makes players completely disappear when viewed from some angles, yet leaves them totally conspicuous from others.

In
Chambara you control samurai birds, who can then don various kinds of silly hats and swords to create a goofy and unique look. The fun customization is then capped off by the choice between stars, feathers, cartoon whales (the logo of developer “team ok”), and more, which your character explodes into upon each death and remain as colorful battlefield decorations until the end of the match.

I spent about thirty minutes playing several matches of
Chambara against a number of opponents on the show floor, and though I found the combat slightly confusing at first, it only took a few games for everything to click—and then it was hard to pull myself away. It’s rare to see a game whose art design plays such an influential role in the dynamics of its gameplay, but Chambara is a fun and fascinating fusion of sophisticated aesthetics and sheer bird-on-bird violence that will give you and your friends hours of multiplayer fun.

Chambara launches on July 26th for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Jackson Murphy: Linelight

Forget the two-dimensional platformer you know. Forget about jumps, environments, characters, and short cuts. Hell, forget about platforms.
Linelight strips the genre of those expected features, placing players in the role of a bright white line and setting them on a fixed pathway with limited mobility. And, just like that, it becomes a puzzle game.

Created by a one-man team,
Linelight represents a break-out moment for developer Brett Taylor, both formally and professionally. It features many of the hallmarks of a first solo project: an unassuming style, an estimated amount of content under ten hours, and a somewhat saccharine soundtrack. But even though Taylor sets limits for himself with the game’s minimalistic presentation, he sticks to the confines of his formula and mines surprising complexity from it.

The game introduces new mechanics, such as red enemy lines and multiple keys, with a gentle guiding hand. Most of the puzzles can be solved within seconds if the player knows what they are doing, but the game is anything but easy. While playing the demo, I became stumped multiple times and had to fiddle around for a few minutes before I cracked a smile as everything clicked into place. From moment to moment,
Linelight is a fountain of Eureka moments. The psychological rush of sudden understanding is the quintessential component of the puzzle genre. Brett Taylor has seemingly constructed a game that is entirely focused on that rush. What it lacks in intricacy, it more than makes up for in elemental perfection.

Marcin Gulik: Inversus

One indie title that caught my attention was a little minimalist action-strategy shooter called
Inversus. You play as a domino-like block and your movements are constrained to the opposite colors of a black and white grid. Your tiny block shoots lasers that can flips your opponent’s tiles in order to trap and obliterate them from the face of the map.

I played
Inversus near the end of the second day of E3 with fellow Gamnesia writer Jackson Murphy, and we both agreed that it was fun and addicting. We mainly played the 2 v 2 mode against some fellow exhausted E3-goers, and the game immediately sucks you in to its simplistic yet addictive gameplay. Matches are fast-paced and could end in the blink of an eye, and we ended up playing a total of 15 rounds before we called it quits. Inversus has a bunch of maps that you can choose from after the match ends, and each grid delivers a unique challenge to avoid getting evaporated by your opponent. Inversus is scheduled to be released on Steam and PS4 this year, and I’ll definitely be downloading it on day one.

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News PlayStation 4 Videos

Fans Have Discovered Some Pretty Neat Secrets in the God of War Reveal Trailer

No one could have predicted that a new God of War would be announced at E3 this year, yet not only was it revealed, it looked downright glorious. However, it seems many of us were a little too distracted by all the pretty, visceral gore that Kratos was pulling out from his enemies to notice a few hidden details. Fortunately, NeoGAF user Bitch Pudding managed to find most, if not all, of these secrets and compiled them for all to see.

There are a fair number of details that are meant to be obvious. For example, when Kratos walks through the bandit camp he sees both a large wolf and the skinned body of a troll being hung upside down. Both examples indicate possible world building for the game, serving as merely just neat additions. However, there are a couple of wicked secrets that have sparked a lot of discussion and speculation on the game.

The most haunting among these is a dark figure that appears just after Kratos defeats one of the skeletons at the 3:34 mark in the trailer. It is difficult to see without zooming in, but there is very clearly a figure with horns floating up and down near the center of the shot. Fans have speculated that this is most likely a fae or elf, as both are present in Norse Mythology. You can also see it escape as Kratos gets closer at 3:46, if you are curious.

For a better look at a flying magical being, check out 6:47 in the trailer. Another fairy-like creature flies away in the top left corner as Kratos and his son are leaving the bandit camp.

Finally, at 9:10 when the camera starts panning out from Kratos and his son, look off in the distance at that river. Turns out when you zoom in, it is not a river. It is actually a giant white snake traveling through the forest. Fans have speculated that this is the Midgard Serpent, a very prominent monster in Norse Mythology.

On a more interesting note, in a video Eurogamer made detailing these secrets, it is mentioned that Kratos’ son fires a bolt of lightning, as if he were Thor. If you are not up to speed on your Norse Mythology, during Ragnarok (basically the Norse apocalypse/recreation of the world), Thor would kill the serpent, but would soon die after succumbing to its poison. Perhaps events in the game will play out similarly? We will have to wait and see when the game is released at some point in the future.

What do you think of these secrets? Do you have any theories on what they are? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: IGN

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict


Bottom

News Wii U

Update: Over 100 Employees from Monolith Soft are Working on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Update: Game Informer has gotten an update from Nintendo on this story. It turns out that Monolith’s team is not the one exceeding 100 employees; rather, this number applies to the Zelda team as a whole, of which Monolith Soft employees only comprise a part.

Original: Last year, Monolith Soft’s Tetsuya Takahashi and Genki Yokota stated that they were interested in helping with development for the next Legend of Zelda game. Since Monolith Soft worked on The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, it would make sense for the team to help with the next entry, and it was confirmed recently that Monolith Soft was definitely be helping out with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Now, Shigeru Miyamoto has informed us of the number of employees that are involved, and it’s quite the sizable group.

“Yes they are involved in this Zelda. People from Tokyo and Kyoto are working together on this. There is a team of over 100 [from Monolith] helping work on this project, and their work has really been helpful.”
— Shigeru Miyamoto

With the sheer scope of
Breath of the Wild, it is no surprise that Monolith Soft has been an integral part of the process. Let’s hope we see more footage of that beautiful world in the near future!

Source: Game Informer

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News Nintendo Switch Wii U

Zelda: Breath of the Wild Features Teleportation Points for Players to Fast-Travel Across the World

In a recent interview, Shigeru Miyamoto discussed the stamina gauge in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and the difficulties of balancing it. During the interview, however, he also mentioned teleportation points as a means of getting around the world, confirming there is fast travel in the game. Miyamoto explained that the development team really wanted to show that the player had freedom to explore but also felt a sense of progression throughout the game. Bill Trinen also commented on this, saying that there are ways to increase your maximum stamina both temporarily and permanently.

Miyamoto explained that the other traversal methods, like horses, the paraglider, and the aforementioned teleportation points, all make the game’s exploration more varied. Trinen also believes that these additional methods completely change the way the player apprehends distances in the game.

There’s been no previous mention of the teleportation points, but these work as fast travel points in the game.
Breath of the Wild is twelve times the size of Twilight Princess, and so getting from one side of the world to the other would take a pretty long time without the ability to teleport back and forth.

GameKult: How do you make sure that the stamina gauge when Link sprints or when weapons breaks don’t become such a heavy burden for players, to the point of breaking the pace and discouraging a lot of people?

Shigeru Miyamoto: It is true that it is a difficult balance to find, especially in a world we explore over long horizontal distances, but also vertically. We really want to show in a concrete way that the character can travel as he pleases and is improving over time in this game. With a character where sprinting is unlimited, we probably would have shrunk the map. Today, we have faster ways to travel like horses, teleportation points or the paraglider which can be used in a complementary way to make exploration more varied. Link’s capacity to sprint and climb serves as a measure to determine everything else.

Bill Trinen: There are also ways to recharge your stamina faster by combining or cooking items. You could find ways to increase your maximum stamina temporarily or permanently. Keep in mind that the playable demo at E3 only represents a small portion of the game and does not allow to ride a horse or to use the paraglider; two options that completely changes the way to apprehend distances. When you get the occasion to glide over long distances and try the same path on foot, you’ll see how much that changes everything.

Source: GameKult

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

3DS News Videos

GameXplain Breaks Down the Pokémon Sun & Moon E3 Footage in a New Analysis Video

Twenty years after the beloved Pokémon series made its debut on Game Boy, it’s now pushing ahead into its seventh generation of main series titles. Pokémon Sun and Moon will launch on Nintendo 3DS this November, and we got lots of new looks at the upcoming games during Nintendo Treehouse’s E3 livestream. As usual, the talented team at GameXplain has carefully studied all the new footage, and they’ve released an analysis video that highlights all the little details you may have missed. Additionally, there’s plenty of speculation, including some thoughts on the Mythical Pokémon Magearna and the role it will play in Sun and Moon. You can check it out by clicking above!

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict

Top

News Retro Wii U

Nintendo Didn’t Want Breath of the Wild to “Recreate” the Original Zelda, But Return to its Roots

In a recent interview, Shigeru Miyamoto explained that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild isn’t an attempt to recreate the original game, but more a return to the series’ roots. He claims that it was the original game testers who first noticed the relationship between the first and latest games. One of the main ideas behind The Legend of Zelda on NES was “freedom of action,” and the development team went back to this when creating Breath of the Wild instead of making another sequential game.

Even the technology idea has been around since the first game, as there were originally plans to have the Triforce composed of electronic chips, and
“make Link a link between eras through a program.” Now that programming has significantly advanced, Miyamoto believes that it’s a good time to realize these technological themes.

GameKult: “To begin with, I would like to talk about the affiliation between Breath of the Wild and the original Zelda for the NES. Do you still play the original game from time to time to see how the series has evolved?”

Shigeru Miyamoto: “The relationship between Breath of the Wild and The Legend of Zelda first comes from the reactions of people who have been able to test the game, we are not trying to recreate the first Zelda. At the time, the latter was created with the idea of freedom of action and a miniature garden in mind. When the series started to evolve, we went to make more and more games with only one path to follow, which pushed us to create larger and more complex dungeons, to imagine enigmas requiring specific items which ended up giving very sequential games. We then decided to go back to the roots of the series and we started developing the game we are showing today.”

GameKult: “I was very surprised at first to see how important technology was in this new game, and then I thought about what you said in an interview a few years ago about the original concept of Zelda where Link traveled in time and where the Triforce was composed of electronic chips. Are you going to fully realize this vision thirty years later?”

Shigeru Miyamoto: “To be honest, for the most part I let Mr. Aonuma take care of the project and I was very surprised to see a smartphone-like device in the game. At first, I said to myself: ‘Can we really do that?’ But effectively, since the first Zelda, we have thought about including technological elements and make Link a link between eras through a program. Now that programming has made huge progress and rendered graphics are more and more beautiful, we thought it would be appropriate for the expression of technological ideas.”

Source: GameKult

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

3DS News

The Story of Seasons Series Will Include Same-Sex Relationships “Sooner or Later”

In a recent interview, Story of Seasons producer Yoshifumi Hashimoto discussed the inclusion of same-sex relationships in future iterations of the franchise. The development team knows that they need to include this feature at some point, but it takes more work than it seems. Adding in all of the new characters, some of which would specifically be gay, Hashimoto explained, would increase the game’s volume by two or three times.

Hashimoto believes that the character customization options are a way to get around this issue, however. The next game in the franchise,
Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns, will feature a very flexible character creator that allows the player to pick a male, for example, but choose “female style options.” Characters can therefore represent another gender despite there only being heterosexual relationships in the game.

Hashimoto also talked about
Stardew Valley, a similar type of farming simulator game that includes a diverse cast of characters and relationships, but reiterates that their reason for wanting to include same-sex relationships isn’t inspired by that game. It’s their own idea, and he says that Story of Seasons will catch up “sooner or later.”

“It’s not like we’re not thinking about [same-sex relationships]. We know that it has to be there sometime in the future. If we have to allow same-sex [relationships], we have to put more characters who are the same gender. As a game, it’s going to be so much more volume, two or three times more. It’s going to be a little difficult.

“It’s not so much that we’re going to be inspired by Stardew Valley in the future, we’re just trying to build up our plan.”
— Yoshifumi Hashimoto

Story of Seasons is the re-branded Harvest Moon series, and the first game is available now on 3DS. Its sequel, Trio of Towns, is launching in the West in 2017, and a new trailer was recently released during Nintendo’s E3 stream.

Source: Polygon

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News Xbox One

Final Fantasy XV’s Director Says Project Scorpio Has “a Lot of Potential”

Weighing in on Microsoft’s recent announcement of Project Scorpio, the director of Final Fantasy XV, Hajime Tabata, said that the new system shows “quite a lot of potential.” He also mentioned that Square Enix had not been informed of the project’s existence beforehand, so they have not begun planning for any titles on it. However, other companies such as Bethesda and EA were evidently in on it, since Todd Howard and Patrick Soderlund were both featured in the announcement video.

That said, Tabata seems very interested in both Scorpio and the recently-confirmed PlayStation 4 Neo, and he expressed interest in seeing what Final Fantasy XV could offer gamers on these new consoles.

“It’d be really great though if we could have Final Fantasy XV something we can play on the current-generation Xbox One and PS4, also give them that choice that when the new, stronger-generation hardware comes out, to have them play at that level as well. I’d really like to be able give them that.” — Hajime Tabata

Source: Kotaku

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top

News PlayStation 4

Kojima Says the Death Stranding Trailer is Representative of the Game and Full of Hints

One of the most bizarre events at this year’s E3 expo was the unveiling of the first trailer for Kojima Productions’ new game Death Stranding. While many watching may have felt like the video gave them no indication of what the resulting game will be like, Hideo Kojima has stated that the trailer is “representative.” According to Kojima, “What you see [in the trailer] will be in the game.” Still, however, our first look at the game was crafted to be deliberately cryptic. Kojima explains:

“There are a lot of hints in there, hidden. The world having this discussion about what this teaser means was kind of the objective. That’s what I wanted to happen. The game will take a little more time to be completed, but the game for me has already started. I am going back and forth with the users, having this interaction, this connection with the people, this discussion.”
— Hideo Kojima

So far Kojima has confirmed that the baby featured in the trailer is not a clone of Norman Reedus’ character, and the trailer as a whole is not a dig at Konami, although he
“thought people might link it.”

Source: Eurogamer

No
ChannelImages
Our Verdict
Top