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The NX is officially the Nintendo Switch, and a lot of the rumors are true. The Switch incorporates a base station that hooks up to your TV and a portable screen unit you can use as a portable. Small controller segments can be connected to either side of the screen, or to what appears to be a transmitter communicating with the base station. The screen unit can be propped up and used as display, with each controller segment usable as an independent controller for multiplayer, or together for solo games. Two screens can even be networked for multiplayer, with 4 people playing a basketball game at once in a park. A traditional controller was also shown.
Nintendo also gave us a release window for the Switch: March 2017. No pricing was announced at this time.
[Update] - More bits: they showed off a new 3D Mario, a Splatoon with 8 person MP that was positioned as an eSport, a new Mario Kart, and what could have been a version of Skyrim. All of these could be real games, or placeholders, so don't get too excited until Nintendo announced something firm.
Nintendo calls the controller segments "Joy-Cons", the screen itself is the Switch Console, and when at home it rests in the Switch dock. The traditional controller is called the Joy Con Pro.
[Update 2] - NVIDIA is making the processor and API for the Switch.
Yes, it's Red Dead Redemption 2. It isn't a new State of Emergency, or a new Table Tennis or any other jokey title. The game will be out next fall, with a trailer coming Thursday at 11 EST. So far here's all they're saying about the game.
Developed by the creators of Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption, Red Dead Redemption 2 is an epic tale of life in Americaís unforgiving heartland. The gameís vast and atmospheric world will also provide the foundation for a brand new online multiplayer experience.
Grand Theft Auto online, the MP component of GTA V, is consistently one of the most played MP modes on XBL and PSN. Rockstar seems to want to bring some of that gameplay to their gritty vision of the old west.
Nate returned!!! Everybodyís happy!! Except he only returned to tell us he wouldnít be coming back for a good while. Everybodyís sad. Actually, weíre all really happy for him and the new job he got. This whole thing is just some side fun for us. Jobs, life, everything else comes first before this show so Nateís new venture, while meaning he wonít be able to make the show for a while, is still a very good thing and one we wish him well with.
Well, itís out in the wild. PSVR is upon us and I didnít get near enough time with it I had hoped by the airing of this episode. However, as of this posting I have put in a lot more time with it and next week Iíll have a better talk about what it does right, what it does wrong, and what it doesnít do at all. As a tease, that Batman VR thing makes me feel justified in the money I spent on it.
But you all know me and Batman, so do with that what you will.
Rockstar has been watching all of the hype about HBO's Westworld, and figured they'd show people how a REAL western game is done. They're not confirming anything yet, but is there anyway the above image isn't a new Red Dead Something? I guess it could be a new Table Tennis game, but even Rockstar isn't that cruel.
Expect official word at some point before the heat death of the universe.
I almost hesitate to say this, but does it seem like the marketing for Star Wars Rogue One has been...understated? At this point last year we were already well into the 'firehose' phase of marketing for Force Awakens. This year we're getting trailers and things like toy reveals, but all in all it feels much less pervasive. In part that difference can be chalked up to the newness of Force Awakens, and Disney/Lucasfilm trying to push it back into the public consciousness in a big way. But I also think it's a realization that franchise fatigue is a real thing. Another holiday season of nonstop bombardment could turn fans off. A lighter touch will promote the movie, while largely avoiding that pitfall.
We know when our mics are hot at the following link.
So look, for the past 3 weeks or more now Iíve been talking about Destiny in these things and Iíd really like to stop now. But I canít. Itís what I played, itís what Matt played and even RJ is looking to possibly get back into it. Maybe. I mean, he fired it up this weekend, so I dunno. But yeah, Iron Banner was this week and it has changed A LOT in year 3. And for the better. So there. Thereís my Destiny talk for the week. Moving on.
I donít know if itís just me but the launch of PSVR seems to be moving along quite softly. This is entry level VR about to be unleashed on the masses and one I kind of predicted to be the litmus test for the platform. Whatever itís doing on the PC side of things is nothing compared to how the public deals with it in the home console side of things. I figured this would be the test. The exposure. The judgement. And as weíre this close to release, there seems to be very little to say or that anyone is saying at all. I imagine this to be a big bet for Sony and the release this week will be something Iíll be closely watching. As well as the weeks ahead and into the holidays. VR has always been, like Sony learned with HDR/4K, a ďsee it to believe itĒ medium.
2K Games and Hangar 13 have released the launch trailer for Mafia III, which is in stores today on all major platforms. Early reports had the PC version locked at 30 FPS, but 2K says a patch is incoming to unlock the framerate.
To start with, we had a lot of people in the chat room wanting to support us with their new Twitch Prime accounts. Man I cannot tell you how much we appreciate that. The bad news, however, is that you canít subscribe to us like that. Not yet anyway. Weíre going to look into this and keep you posted.
Meanwhile, I started the show going over the remainder of the weeks left in this year and pointing out how there is at least ONE THING in each week I want to play. I donít remember the last time weíve seen a fall/holiday season like this. Thereís normally a game in October (or two) and then maybe a game in November. But nope, not this year. Starting with this past week and on into the first week of December (except Thanksgiving weekend), thereís a new game or item releasing that has caught my attention. From the PSVR to the NES Mini to Forza Horizons 3 last week to The Last Guardian in December.
The slate is full. Now if I could just stop playing Destiny long enough to enjoy the slate.
The first batch of DLC for Darkest Dungeon will hit all platforms sometime in early 2017. The poster for The Crimson Court is posted above. The look and the tagline "The Blood! I must have the Blood!" seems to indicate that vampires are afoot. PC Gamer says a new playable class will be included, but that's all we know at this point about the contents of the DLC.
The sequel to everyone's favorite console-exclusive addiction may be making it's way onto the PC in 2017, but you may not be able to bring your characters along for the new game.
Kotaku, citing anonymous sources and a NeoGAF post, claims that Destiny 2 will release on the PC in addition to the XB1 & PS4 when it launches next year. (Note that neither Activision nor Bungie have officially announced Destiny 2, but we all know it's coming, and likely in later 2017). That source says Bungie wants Destiny 2 to feel like a true sequel, and not just another big expansion, and that may - stress MAY - mean you won't be bringing your character along to the new game.
In conversations with me, people connected to Bungie have made comparisons to Blizzardís Diablo 2, which iterated on the first game in some incredible ways but didnít carry over characters or content from Diablo. I donít know exactly how much will change in Destiny 2, but all signs point to the developers starting from scratch. ďD2 is a completely different game,Ē said one person familiar with development. ďThe Taken King was a reboot for Destiny 1 to fix small things. This is the overhaul to fix big things.Ē
People who have upwards of a thousand hours in the original Destiny probably won't be thrilled if their characters aren't migrated to the sequel, even though very few games let you continue the same character in successive titles (Mass Effect being one of the notable exceptions).
Kotaku speculates that if you can't carry your character over, then the sequel will give rewards for playtime or character progression from the original (presumably limited to the same console family).
Weíre surprised we killed two hours at the following link.
Itís mid-September. Must mean weíre going to talk about Destiny. I actually never thought that was going to be a thing but...thatís going to be a thing now. I canít put it down. Seriously, the day after we did this show I was in front of Destiny for 90% of it. And it didnít feel grindy. I was doing grindy things to be sure, but they packaged it so well that I was too distracted to notice, or maybe I did and just didnít care.
The record book is an evil plague upon the player. Constantly teasing you with a new bag of loot and constantly tormenting you with just a few more of doing this or a few more of doing that and youíll move the ball further down the field. The new public space is familiar but new and the new public arena, when the stars align, is a magical place filled with colorful loot you canít pick up because youíre already overflowing with it.
The guys at Bungie have gotten it wrong before. They got it wrong out of the gate 2 years ago. They got it wrong with the first two expansions. Theyíve gotten it wrong with an update here and an update there. But they got it right with The Taken King and theyíve been getting it right with the major updates since then and now again with Rise Of Iron. And your opinion may differ from mine on the matter, but if theyíre getting me to keep coming back again and again to play this game, then they are getting it right for me.
Bethesda has released a new trailer for Dishonored 2 entitled "Creative Kills." Note that these kills are creative, but not really stealthy. These kills are quire cool, but I tried my best to go through the original as invisibly as possible, and using powers to throw a whole cadre of guards into an electric fence sets me a bit on edge. I guess carefully edging around the perimeter of an area to gain entry just isn't as telegenic as tossing dudes in the air.
Weíre surprising each other with gifts at the following link.
I donít know of many people looking to get a PS4 Pro. Of the people I know who got an Xbox One S it was usually due to being their first Xbox One or just getting it for the size or color. All of that is to say that most people donít have a 4K display yet to enjoy what these new consoles are providing. But Iím not saying itís a bad thing. I wasnít someone back in the SDTV days who said itíll never go all digital or complained about the push for HD stuff. I was all for it. And Iím all for 4K as well. It just hasnít made the crossover yet, but it will and probably very soon. That ďcrossoverĒ being when you can walk into a store and 4K sets will be the only choice you have on the resolution side.
By the way, if you ever wondered just how much of a DuckTales fan I was or how excited Sara gets over The Banner Saga - this is your episode!
Memo to The Coalition and Microsoft Studios: should you really be calling this a launch trailer for Gears of War 4 when the game's actual launch is still three weeks off? I'm splitting hairs at this point, but "almost a month away" seems a bit early for a launch trailer.
Either way, here's a wholly pre-rendered look at Gears 4, the first game in the franchise developed by new series shepherds The Coalition. As with corporate sibling 343 and Halo 4, they're taking the reigns on a popular series, and from the look of things they're largely staying the course.
Gears is (along with Halo and Forza) one of Microsoft's big three franchises, and they'll be investing a lot in promotion, so expect to see variants on this ad a lot in the weeks to come.
Valve has, once again, stepped into a hornets nest of their own creation while trying to improve the Steam platform.
You can read the whole post here. Short version: reviews of a game acquired via key and not a Steam purchase will now be segregated by default from the overall community score. Valve is trying to combat unscrupulous developers and publishers who give out free copies of their titles in exchange for positive reviews. Unfortunately they seems to be using a shotgun to swat a fly.
Some of the most ardent fans of a game will get their copies via keys - through Kickstarter or Humble, or as bonuses for owning earlier works by the developer - and their voices are now effectively cut out of the greater review score. So you lose the payola-inflated scores, but in the process damage the review score even more than before.
As with so many other issues Valve has run into when trying to improve Steam over the years, this one seems like it could be solved relatively easily with better curation. But that would require hiring more people just to monitor Steam reviews, and as with previous kerfuffles, Valve seems loathe to make such a move.
AAA games are unlikely to be affected by this change to the review structure, but indie games are going to feel the pinch. Even a relatively small number of excised reviews can drastically alter a game's aggregate score. RPS has a rundown of devs worrying about their futures on Steam if you're curious.
Steam is a wonderful platform, but it needs to avoid some of the horrors that have befallen the Google and iOS app stores. Dumping the reviews of the unscrupulous is a good step, but not if they're taking the reviews of the passionate along with them.
One of the most important creative voices in the industry that few gamers know about is retiring. Blizzard's Chris Metzen (senior vice president of story and franchise development) has announced his retirement from the company after nearly a quarter century of service.
Metzen isn't a terribly well known name in gaming, but he's been a key designer and writer for pretty much all of Blizzard's games since, from Warcraft, Diablo and Starcraft to WoW, HoTS and the new Overwatch. He's also lent his voices to characters such as the Skeleton King, Bastion and the terran Battlecruiser.
He'll never be seen as a giant of the industry, but he's helped lead some of the biggest, most beloved games of the last two decades, and his work has spawned tons of spinoff material and innumerable works of fan fiction. Unlike most "retirements", Metzen says he's really going home, not just leaving to found a new studio in a few months. So let us say thank you for a man who has had a hand in creating art beloved and enjoyed by so many.
Weíre having technical difficulties at the following link.
Iíll start by telling you the show is a bit short. At least what youíre hearing (or watching) is a bit short. There was an issue with Twitch and we lost a few minutes there. Sorry about that.
Iím back from PAX West/Prime and while it shouldnít have taken us as long as it did to talk about that, we sort of spent a long time talking about that. So long, in fact, that we didnít get to the whole PS4 Pro situation. We touch on it just a little bit before the end of the show, but Iíve saved all our notes and moved them over to this weekendís episode so weíll be sure to spend a good chunk of time talking about this new console that sort of, kind of, really isnít new.