Bethesda has announced that The Elder Scrolls Online will be released for the PC on April 4, 2014, with releases on the XB1 and PS4 to follow in June.
The game itself is set a millennium before the events of Skyrim, and has the player choose between three factions - Aldmeri Dominion, Daggerfall Covenant or Ebonheart Pact - each vying for the Ruby Throne while the Daedra work behind the scenes to enter Cyrodil. The game will cost $60, and require a $15/month subscription.
A new automated content-scanning system implemented by YouTube has resulted in a plague of takedown notices for gaming channels on the video network.
The news began yesterday evening, when a number of gaming-oriented personalities I follow on Twitter - including TotalBiscut, Ohmwrecker and Jim Sterling - began to note flood of takedown notices on their videos from YouTube. Some of the notices were from companies that seem to have nothing to do with the content of the videos, but others were listed as coming from publishers such as Deep Silver, Capcom and Blizzard. Considering how important these channels are to these folks - for many people, these channels are their entire livelihoods - they were understandably angry. Problem was, the publishers weren't the ones initiating the claims. Reps for all of those publishers took to social media to insist they aren't flagging the videos, and affected users should contest the takedowns so they can allow the videos. So if they publishers aren't doing the flagging, who is? It seems like much of this may be the result of overzealous screening bots.
TheRadBrad [one of the most popular gaming YouTubers], among others, are under the impression this is part of YouTube’s recent attempt to crack down on affiliates within multichannel networks (MCN). The way YouTube works is that if a video gets enough views, Google will begin sharing revenue with the creator if the content passes a check for copyrighted material. If a YouTube user joins an MCN, however, they can bypass that check and immediately begin earning from their videos.
In January, however, YouTube plans to start randomly prescreening affiliates’ uploads for copyrighted content. It’s possible that this wave of Content ID conflicts is a part of that.
So the programs scans for copyrighted content, and flags every video with even a few seconds of such content, even if the producer has authority to use the content. So most of the problem is an overreach on the part of YouTube parent Google.
YouTube monetization is a new world for a lot of people. Many gamers make good money - even very good money - making YouTube videos about games. Some publishers - most notably Nintendo - have pretty firm restrictions on videos featuring their games, and prohibit just about everything. But most publishers see the value in allowing Let's Plays, video reviews, or commentary. They're not at fault here. The Google system which completely automates a process that could destroy the livelihood of innocent people is at fault. If the Mountain View, CA police department started randomly suspending the drivers licenses of Google employees who are merely suspected of moving violations by a program, they would be up in arms about the violation. YouTube is a private institution, and therefore can make their own rules, but they can't enforce those rules in such a capricious and random manner when it comes to peoples' livelihoods.
Obsidian has announced that Project Eternity now has an official name - Pillars of Eternity. They've also released a gameplay teaser, which gives you a sense of the combat in the game. Spoiler: it looks a lot like classic D&D RPGs such as Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights, but prettier. Obsidian has also set up a backers portal, where donors can fill in their info and claim some of the rewards earned by backing the project on Kickstarter and other platforms.
Doki-Doki Universe is your banner release this week on all 3 platforms, while the Vita also gets Sorcery Saga from NISA. Borderlands 2 is your free PS Plus game this week, while Plus members also get deeper discounts on games on sale during Week 2 of the holiday sale (Spelunky, $3.75, buy it). And that pretty much does it, not a huge week this week. The full update from the PlayStation Blog:
Two years ago we did a live stream commentary of the VGA’s. One hour in and Arjay had to leave. He told us then it was due to a prior commitment, but he tells us now it was because of the VGA’s. We can’t really blame him for it back then and we really wouldn’t have held it against him or anyone else had they done it during this show. It helped that most of it was on mute the entire time so we really only paid attention when, you know, games were being shown. It became a distraction during the broadcast but you do get to hear (and see) genuine first look reactions to some of the big reveals as they happen.
Outside of all that, we got to speak with Twisted Pixel about their latest game for the Xbox One, LocoCycle. We cover the games genesis and evolution as well as address the review scores and that one specific card it has been dealt in particular with some reviews. Plus, there’s a glimpse to be seen of their next project - one that, only based on two images, seems to be headed in a completely different direction for the studio.
I've been following these folks and their game since I first saw it at E3 this year and I'm very excited to finally get to talk to them. They can't join us live unfortunately, but we'll be pre-recording the interview this Saturday morning. If you've got questions for the team, post them here and we'll get them asked and, hopefully, answered!
Konami has announced that Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes - the sort-of-prologue to MGS 5: Phantom Pain - will be released on March 18. Ground Zeroes will come in three varieties: a digital purchase on 360 and PS3 for $20, as a disc purchase on the 360 and PS3 for $30 or as a digital purchase on the XB1 and PS4 for $30.
The Xbox versions of the game will get the exclusive Raiden missions as seen in the trailer, while the Playstation platforms will get the Deja Vu missions starring "classic" Snake.
Ground Zeroes is basically the prologue to the main MGS 5. I'd try to recap the story, but I could probably earn an MBA in the time it would take me to fully understand the backstory of Metal Gear. No word yet on when the full Phantom Pain title will be released.
Spike TV and Gametrailers held their newly rechristened VGX show last night, and by most accounts it was interminable. I for one don't have the patience for that shit, so I'm relying on the recaps of folks who are actually paid to watch the show for my rundowns.
- The most interesting revelation of the night was No Man's Sky, from Joe Danger developers Hello Games. It's a procedurally generated exploration game where "every atom" of the game is created by algorithm and therefore unique to the gamer. It's also absolutely beautiful. No word on platforms or release dates.
- Next most interesting was a pair of announcements from Telltale Games. First was the rumored Game of Thrones adventure game. Developed in conjunction with HBO, Telltale is being coy about who - or what - the game will revolve around.
- Also on deck is Tales of the Borderlands, which returns to the characters of Pandora for a new story in the Telltale style.
- Nintendo announced that Cranky Kong will be a playable character when Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze hits the Wii U on February 21.
- Square Enix will release Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition - which includes all multiplayer DLC - on the Xbox One and Playstation 4 on January 28.
- Elijah Wood has joined the voice cast of Double Fine's Broken Age.
- New trailers were shown for Destiny, Titanfall, The Division and Quantum Break.
On the heels of Microsoft's warning about enabling the dev kit option on Xbox One systems, it seems that someone has decided to try enticing gamers into using the setting to trick them into rendering their consoles inoperable.
There is an image floating around the internet with instructions claiming to enable backward compatibility on Xbox One systems using the dev kit code that leaked last week.
There is no backward compatibility mode in the Xbox One!
We wanted to take a moment to let everyone know that there is a planned network maintenance for PlayStation platforms scheduled for Monday, December 9th from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM Pacific Time (12 noon to 5:00 PM Eastern). To clarify, this is currently scheduled to be a 5 hour maintenance.
This maintenance will increase the number of devices that can be activated by an account as a portable gaming device. This means that you can now activate up to three portable gaming devices (PSP (PlayStation Portable) and PlayStation Vita) on your SEN account. This new portable gaming device allotment is in addition to the other network improvements being implemented during this downtime.
If you’ve signed onto the network over the past few days, you’ll still be able to play online and access apps during this period, but you may receive a maintenance notification when attempting to access the PlayStation Store, PlayStation Home and Account Management as these services will be unavailable. Be sure to sign in now if you wish to access the network during this maintenance window.
Thanks for your patience during this maintenance timeframe, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
We’re coming up on a long period of nothing new being released and an even shorter period of studios going silent for the holiday break. And while the games will be few and far between, we’re just about to be pelted with trailers, announcements, and gameplay courtesy of the VGA’s...or X’s - whichever you prefer.
Tomorrow on the show it’ll be Arjay, Matt, possibly James, maybe Jeremy, and myself sitting down to chat as we always do on Saturday nights, but we’ll have the VGX stream going so we can see the news as all of you do and maybe give a comment here and there about what they show us, while hopefully refraining from commenting on how they show it to us.
Also lined up for tomorrow night is an interview with Twisted Pixel. The interview was recorded on Thursday so I can hint to you that we’ll talk about their previous games, their currently released game, the not-so-happy comments it has generated, and a tiny obscured look at their future game.
We hope you’ll join us in the chat room and we’ll see you live tomorrow night!
Activision and Bungie have announced that Destiny will launch on September 9, 2014, commemorating the 15th anniversary of the Dreamcast launch in North America.
Destiny will be Bungie's first post-Halo series. It involves a human race on the brink of extinction, a hovering protector, monsters, loot, and lots of shooting. A beta for the game will take place in the summer, and debut first on the PS3 and PS4.
Destiny will be released on the PS3, PS4, 360 and XB1. There are currently no plans for a PC release.
Bethesda's VP of operations Pete Hines put the kibosh on rumors that Fallout 4 would be making an appearance at this weekend's VGX show. So speaketh Hines:
No, folks. I am not going to VGX. Bethesda is not showing/talking about anything at VGX. Just some PR meetings in LA. Take deep breaths.
So, that's the end of the story.
Or is it?
Yeah. It probably is. While Hines can be plenty cagey, his denial sure seems firm. If they were springing a Fallout 4 surprise at the show, they could have put Tango Gameworks' The Evil Within on the show, giving Bethesda honchos a reason to be at the show, and then pulled a rabbit out of their hats. Plus the countdown site - if it's legit, and that's still in come doubt - is pointing towards December 11, not the December 7 date of the VGX show. So for the moment, if you're waiting with bated breath for a Fallout 4 teaser, you may want to ratchet down a notch.
If you want to watch the VGXes, they'll start streaming the show at 6pm Eastern on Gametrailers.com, Xbox Live, PSN, Twitch and a host of other sites. A one hour recap show will air on Spike TV Monday night.
As some of you know, I've been working on the sequel to Stars Rain Down since June, and I'm proud to announce that Biotech Legacy: Long Fall is finally ready for daylight!
Four years have passed since human civilization fell, and life on Earth has evolved. Powered by living technology, fledgling human and Oikeyan nations now war for control on the surface, while the ancient starship Legacy and her human commander, Marcus Donovan, wait in orbit for a chance to create a more lasting peace.
But all of that changes when search & rescue specialist Jack Hernandez uncovers something dangerous hidden in the jungles of Mexico.
Now the race is on to control the artifact. Driven by fanatical ideologies and an insatiable hunger for victory, each side will unleash soldiers with power beyond reason in their bid to control the Earth.
But is any creature incorruptible enough to wield the power of a god?
Via /Film, here is the primary cast for the Warcraft movie.
Ben Foster (3:10 to Yuma, Angel in X-Men 3)
Travis Fimmel (Ragnar Lothbrok on Vikings)
Paula Patton (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol)
Toby Kebbell (The Sorcerer's Apprentice)
Rob Kazinsky (True Blood, Eastenders)
Dominic Cooper (Need For Speed)
As for who they'll each be playing...I have to freaking idea. I have no real experience in the Warcraft universe, so I won't even hazard a guess. We do know that the movie was delayed to March 2016 from a holiday 2015 debut so it doesn't have to go head-to-head with the new Star Wars. Beyond that, it sure seems like a good cast. It's not a movie that needs big names on the top line, so solid young actors are probably the best way to go.
This isn't good. EA has announced that development of future expansions for Battlefield 4 is being halted so the team at DICE can focus on a number of stability issues that have plagued the game since its launch a little over a month ago.
Since the game's launch, some players have been complaining vociferously about connection issues, including drops, issues connecting to servers or even hard locks when loading certain maps. The problems seemed to be present across all 5 platforms, but not for all users. The problems got worse yesterday when the first expansion - China Rising - launched on the 360, XB1 and PC.
So far EA has not given a timetable on when to expect fixes to roll out.
We've talked to developers, first time game makers, and legends (in our minds, at least) in the industry, but we're very pleased and proud to consider the folks at Twisted Pixel our friends. They've participated in fund raisers for Child's Play offering rewards for folks here on CoG and they've even included my name and In-Game Chat in the credits of one of their games.
It's been a while since we've had them on the show, however, and we really look forward to welcoming them back. Unfortunately, they can't make the show live so we'll be recording this interview on the afternoon of Thursday, December 5th and play it back during Saturday's broadcast. I bold that so you'll know just how short of a window you have to get in any questions you'd like answered from the makers of The Maw, Splosion Man, GunStringer, and their latest title for Xbox One, LocoCycle.
All you have to do to get your question asked is post them here in this thread!
It’s a pretty low key week this week, with Tiny Brains (PS4), Stick it to the Man (Vita/PS3), and Rainbow Moon (Vita). There are a number of price drops and discounts, including Ni No Kuni for all of $9.79 for Plus members, who also get Grid 2 for free. Escape Plan also makes it to the PS4, and is free if you already own it on the Vita. The full list from the PlayStation Blog:
Stick It To The Man ($12.99, Cross-Buy)
Battlefield 4 Bonus Holiday Edition ($49.99)
FIFA 14 Bonus Holiday Edition ($49.99)
Madden NFL 25 Bonus Holiday Edition ($49.99)
NCAA Football 14 Bonus Holiday Edition ($49.99)
Need For Speed Rivals Bonus Holiday Edition ($49.99)
Rainbow Moon Cross-Save Bundle ($22.49)
Tiny Brains ($19.99) [With Demo]
Escape Plan ($14.99, Cross-Buy)
Stick It To The Man ($12.99, Cross-Buy)
Rainbow Moon ($14.99) ($7.49 for owners of the PS3 version) [With Demo]
Rainbow Moon Cross-Save Bundle ($22.49)
Grid 2 (Free)
Tiny Brains $15.99
Draw Slasher $2.99
Rainbow Moon (Vita) $11.99
Rainbow Moon Cross-Save Bundle $17.99
Rainbow Moon PS3 Player Special Offer $5.99
DEFIANCE DELUXE EDITION $7.50
ARMY OF TWO THE DEVIL’S CARTEL $7.50
THE BUREAU: XCOM DECLASSIFIED $20.99
REMEMBER ME $19.19
NI NO KUNI: WRATH OF THE WHITE WITCH $9.79
Final Fantasy XIV $10.00
Final Fantasy XIV Collector’s Edition $15.00
Rocksmith 2014 $29.39
DEFIANCE DELUXE EDITION $14.99
ARMY OF TWO THE DEVIL’S CARTEL $14.99
THE BUREAU: XCOM DECLASSIFIED $29.99
REMEMBER ME $23.99
NI NO KUNI: WRATH OF THE WHITE WITCH $13.99
Final Fantasy XIV $19.99
Final Fantasy XIV Collector’s Edition $29.99
Rocksmith 2014 $41.99
Record Of Agarest War – Public Release $14.99
Record Of Agarest War 2 $29.99
Record Of Agarest War Zero $19.99
Saints Row: The Third $29.99
Tomb Raider Digital Edition (Bundle) $29.99
Battle Fantasia $14.99
Crazy Strike Bowling $9.99
Blazblue: Continuum Shift Extend $14.99
Blazblue: Continuum Shift Ii $9.99
Blazing Souls Accelate $9.99
Cho Aniki Zero $5.99
Gladiator Begins $7.99
Hakuoki: Warriors Of The Shinsengumi $19.99
Jikandia: The Timeless Land $9.99
Mimana Iyar Chronicle $9.99
Ragnarok Tactics $14.99
Sweet Fuse: At Your Side $19.99
Grid 2 All-In Pack $34.99
Grid 2: Grid 2 Classic Grid Pack $2.99
Batman: Arkham Origins Initiation ($6.99, Free for Season Pass)
Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate: Core Fighters Casual Collection Vol. 2 ($1.99 ea. or $10.99 Bundle)
Dollar Dash Winter Pack ($1.99)
Dynasty Warriors 8 DLC
Killer Is Dead Smooth Operator Pack ($4.99)
Magic 2014: Duels of the Planeswalkers Deck Pack 2 ($2.99)
Rocksmith 2014 DLC
Saint Seiya Brave Soliders DLC
Saints Row IV Hey Ash, Whatcha Playin? Pack ($2.99)
Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark The Lost Clones ($3.99, Cross-Buy)
Tour de France 2013 Paris-Nice ($4.99)
WWE 2K14 Summer Rae (Free)
WWE 2K14 Superstars and Moves Pack ($7.99, Free for Season Pass)
Young Justice: Legacy DLC
Zombie Driver HD Burning Garden of Slaughter ($1.99)
Escape Plan DLC
Rainbow Moon DLC
Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark The Lost Clones ($3.99, Cross-Buy)
At E3 in June it was clear that the biggest reversal in the console war was among the indies. From their earliest days the 360 seemed to embrace indie games, while the PS3 seemed to be all about the big boys. Those attitudes shifted over the years, with Sony embracing smaller developers while Microsoft was castigated for their restrictive practices. This culminated at E3 with Sony pushing their commitment to indie gaming while Microsoft, for the most part, seemed to have no answers.
As with many other aspects of the new console war, things changed. Microsoft has been trying hard to woo back disaffected indies with their ID@Xbox Program, which lets developers self-publish their titles on the Xbox One. Today their announced their first batch of developers, with their best known titles listed in parenthesis. (list formatting courtesy Engadget)
Inis (Elite Beat Agents, Gitaroo Man)
Comcept (Soul Sacrifice, Mighty No. 9)
Vlambeer (Luftrausers, Super Crate Box, Ridiculous Fishing)
Double Eleven (LittleBigPlanet Vita)
Slightly Mad Studios (Need for Speed: Shift)
Born Ready (Strike Suit Zero)
Crytek (Crysis series, Ryse: Son of Rome)
Happion Labs (Sixty Second Shooter)
Definition 6 (SpyParty)
Team 17 (Worms series)
Panic Button (Alien Race)
Double Fine (The Cave, Costume Quest, Stacking)
Team Colorblind (Aztez)
Signal Studios (Toy Soldiers)
Zen Studios (Zen Pinball series)
Bongfish (Motorcross Madness)
Half-Brick (Fruit Ninja, Jetpack Joyride)
Ninja Bee (A Kingdom for Keflings)
Zeboyd Games (Cthulhu Saves the World)
Nicalis (Cave Story)
The Men Who Wear Many Hats (Organ Trail)
Iron Galaxy (Divekick, Wreckateer)
Jackbox Games (You Don't Know Jack! series)
High Voltage Software (The Conduit)
Capy (Below, Super Time Force)
Behaviour (Naughty Bear: Panic in Paradise)
Hidden Path (Defense Grid)
Gaijin Games (bit.trip series)
The Odd Gentlemen (The Adventures of P.B. Winterbottom)
Way Forward (Ducktales Remastered)
Other Ocean (Dark Void Zero)
We already knew some of these names, and in some cased even the games they're working on. But it's nice to see a wide variety of devs working on titles for the platform. Of course these games are, for the most part, not platform-exclusive, so we'll get to see the fruits of their labor on lots of systems in the years to come.
The first ID@Xbox titles will be released in 2014, although no firm dates were announced.
Courtesy of an ad in the new print version of Game Informer, we now know when the first batch of story DLC will be released for Assassins' Creed 4: Black Flag. The Freedom Cry DLC will be released December 17 and although we don't know how much it will cost, it is included in the Black Flag season pass.
Freedom Cry takes place 15 years after the events of the main game and stars Edward Kenway's second in command, Adewale, now an Assassin in his own right. The DLC will include 4 hours of gameplay.