Living world sandbox RPG ‘Project Witchstone’ to launch for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC in Q2 2020

Living world sandbox RPG 'Project Witchstone' to launch for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC in Q2 2020

An RPG drawing inspiration from pen-and-paper RPGs.

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Destiny Connect: Tick-Tock Travelers – ‘A Guide to Odd Times’ Trailer

Destiny Connect: Tick-Tock Travelers - 'A Guide to Odd Times' Trailer

Another quick look at some of the mechanics for this time travel RPG.

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Persona 5 Royal Screenshots show new Personas, activities, and other additions to the re-release

Persona 5 Royal Screenshots show new Personas, activities, and other additions to the re-release

See more of the revamped Persona 5.

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Fortnite Season 10 Leak Suggests Epic Is About To Hit A Big Undo Button

Fortnite: Battle Royale is about to hit Season 10, with a start date set for this Thursday, August 1. Developer Epic Games has been releasing Season 10 teasers this week, which have suggested that some sort of time-related hijinks were about to unfold as part of the big seasonal changeover event. And sure enough, a leaked trailer for Season 10 seems to hammer home what’s about to happen.

Today’s teaser, which is likely to be the final one, consists of a brief video clip where the Zero Point orb hovering over Loot Lake explodes. It turns out those are the opening moments of the Season 10 trailer, the full version of which has leaked, apparently via the Fortnite Brazil Twitter account. That video has since been removed but reshared online–watch it below–and it shows the explosion send the character who was fleeing from it into a sort of wormhole.

As he floats through it, he sees the major elements and additions during the past year in Fortnite–the missile explosion, vaulted weapons, the introduction of Peely and other skins, seasonal events, and more. At the end, he falls back to the island map, only for the camera to pan out and reveal this is the moment just before the meteor’s impact that demolished Dusty Depot. As one of this week’s teasers pointed to, the location is still intact, at least for the time being.

Exactly how this pans out in-game is something we probably won’t know until the Season 10 update arrives tomorrow. But it seems as if we can expect Epic to essentially hit the undo button on many of the map changes that have taken place. That said, don’t expect everything to be the same–Epic’s reference to a “twist” and a peek at a modified version of the Drift skin suggest that things may not be exactly how you remember them.

from GameSpot – Game News

Smash Bros. Ultimate Freebie Now Available For Nintendo Switch Online Members

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate‘s big 4.0 update has arrived, adding another DLC fighter to the roster–the Hero from Dragon Quest–and a few other new features to the game, such as an Online Tournament mode that will occasionally host special themed events and a new Spectate mode that lets you earn prizes for successfully predicting the winner. Alongside the update, Nintendo has quietly released a little Smash Ultimate freebie for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers.

Right now, NSO members can download the Spirit Board Challenge Pack 1. The pack contains an assortment of helpful items for the game’s Spirit Board mode. You’ll receive the following:

  • 1,500 Spirit Points
  • 10 Shuffle All (reshuffles every Spirit on the board)
  • 10 All Primaries (reshuffles the board with Primary Spirits)
  • 10 All Supports (reshuffles the board with Support Spirits)

As previously mentioned, the Spirit Board Challenge Pack 1 is an exclusive offer for NSO subscribers. The Eshop notes the pack cannot be downloaded during a free trial for the service, so you need to have an active, paid membership in order to claim it. To download the pack, select the Eshop icon from Smash Ultimate’s main menu and you’ll see it listed beneath the game’s other downloadable content.

NSO subscriptions cost US $4 / £3.49 / AU $6 for one month, US $8 / £7 / AU $12 for three months, and US $20 / £18 / AU $30 for one year. Nintendo also offers an annual Family Membership, which runs for US $35 / £31.49 / AU $55 and covers up to eight Nintendo Accounts across multiple systems. Along with online play, subscribers get access to other special offers, such as the game voucher program (although your last day to purchase vouchers is today, July 31), and some free titles such as Tetris 99 and the Switch NES library. Those who purchase a 12-month individual or family membership will also receive an exclusive set of gear for Splatoon 2.

Speaking of Splatoon 2, Nintendo is offering a free set of gear for the game via My Nintendo. The batch costs 100 Platinum Points and includes the following four items: Gray FA-11 Bomber, Brown FA-11 Bomber, Red V-Neck Limited Tee, and Green V-Neck Limited Tee. The gear set will be available on My Nintendo until February 1, 2020.

from GameSpot – Game News

PS4 Puzzle-Adventure Concrete Genie Is About Creating Art In A Perilous Place

First revealed at Paris Games Week 2017, Concrete Genie is all about letting your artistic creations flourish amid a space that seems intent on extinguishing them. Developed by PixelOpus, your fictional hometown serves as the canvas to restoring the once lively streets that have been corrupted by a strange force. Helping you are your new friends in the form of the energetic Genies, who will bring color back and a newfound sense of identity back to your home. Nearing its October 8, 2019 release, we had the chance to both play the game and speak with director Dominic Robilliard about the creation of this colorful adventure.

The story focuses on an introverted and lonely teenager named Ash, who spends his days drawing in his journal while hanging out in the seaside town of Denska. Though it was once a thriving place, it’s now a depressing locale plagued by a large number of young delinquents. Ash finds himself at odds with a group of bullies who tear apart his journal, scattering the pages across town. He eventually discovers a new outlet to explore his artistic talents after finding a magical brush, allowing him to conjure up enchanted graffiti and beings known as Genies. With his brush and Genies in tow, he’ll take to the streets and rooftops to restore Denska, pushing back the darkness that has crept into town.

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Throughout its opening acts, Concrete Genie wears its influences to classic kids adventure films on its sleeve. With little to no adult supervision, young teens explore and cause mischief with reckless abandon–giving way to a conflict that only they can resolve. Ash can use his artistic talents to create vibrant and detailed landscapes across the walls of the city, which help him communicate with the Genies and open access to new areas. The contrast between the vivid graffiti and the depressing seaside town creates unique visuals that lead to some stunning moments where your work slowly brings the decaying Denska back to life.

It’s an endearing concept, driven by a spirit that many films and TV shows in a similar vein, like The Neverending Story or the more recent Stranger Things, run with. Speaking with Robilliard, the director went into Concrete Genie’s origins and how the setup focuses pretty heavily on the game’s anti-bullying message.

“When we started this second game [following 2014’s Entwined], we had a decent amount of time to explore different concepts,” said Robilliard. “Originally the idea of Concrete Genie came from our VFX artist Ashwin Kumar, which is why our main protagonist is called Ash. The very first image was of a bullied small boy who was drawing these large characters in the wall and imagining that they were sticking up for him. The theme of bullying and the idea that art can help cope was always there from the very beginning. Those two things just inspired everybody, and it really took off. That was the beginning for us to explore art as a gameplay mechanic, and to let people express themselves.”

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At the heart of Concrete Genie are the constructs crafted from the enchanted brush. When facing the side of a building or a different structure, Ash can pull out his brush to paint grass, flowers, trees, and a starry sky across the surface. The more art you place on the town’s key areas, the more the darkness will dissipate. There’s a lot of room to experiment with these drawings, and I found it to be quite entertaining to stack on layers upon layers of art. Ash’s sprawling landscapes add an impressive ambiance to the environment, turning the depressing and drab alleyways into vibrant nighttime galleries teeming with detail. These drawings are also the catalyst for your Genies to spring into action.

Ash’s greatest allies are the Genies. They not only help him overcome various obstacles, but they also liven up the town with their inquisitive personalities. They’re also entirely of your own making. Along with creating landscapes to free up the city form the corruption, the brush can conjure genies, allowing you to select from a variety of different body types and attachments. You can get creative with your Genie–and of course, there are no mistakes, only happy accidents. While drawing the body of my Genie during the early sections, I accidentally placed the horns and tail on the opposite end. Instead of the game telling me I was doing it wrong, it rolled with it. The resulting Genie, a smiling bright red creature with a tail on its head and antennae around its rear, felt like a creation that came from the minds of Jim Henson or Tim Burton.

As you explore more of Denska, tagging new walls and finding lost pages from your journal, more of the town’s history will be revealed. The bullies that taunt Ash also have distinct backstories, and Ash discovers what set them on such a destructive path. Concrete Genie presents different areas to explore that progressively becomes more intricate as you head further into town. Though it’s not quite a Metroidvania-style game, there is an incentive to backtrack to earlier areas once you have acquired some new Genies and abilities. While there are a lot of puzzles to overcome in Denska, most of them seemed a bit one-note–centering mostly around creating an object in a spot to get the Genie to open a door elsewhere. I did enjoy seeing everything come together after finishing a complex tag. I was always surprised by what I could create with the painting mechanics, and it’s easily the game’s most exciting feature.

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“We worked really hard never to judge your painting,” said the director. “One of the reasons that we have the lights as a mechanic for gauging your coverage is that it’s encouraging you to paint in specific places. We never tell you what to paint or how to paint them, and we never say whether your artwork is good or not. That’s completely up to you. So using paint to push back the darkness that could actually be on the walls, creating more of an environmental aspect, was a theme that we wanted to explore. It suddenly became this very natural fit that this beloved hometown idea that Ash is trying to save and rejuvenate from this environmental disaster that has befallen it. It all just fit together really well, and it gives you this nice baseline for the progression of the story, and it mirrors what’s happening to Ash as well.”

However, it’s not just drawing that you can do with your brush. Eventually, Ash will confront monsters that spawned from the darkness. You’ll have to use the brush’s elemental attacks and light to subdue them. As we transitioned from the game’s more relaxed and free-from drawing structure, the combat felt a bit jarring to jump into, but it’s certainly an interesting twist for the game. It works well given where the plot leads, but it still felt a bit lacking if somewhat unrefined compared to the flexibility of the drawing mechanic. Still, given that it’s pulling heavily on tropes from ’80s adventure films, I’m interested in seeing how it will develop alongside the painting gameplay.

I was struck by Concrete Genie’s attention to detail when it came to its location, and how in-depth the drawing mechanics were. It left me curious to see how far you can stretch Ash’s artistic skills, and just where the story will go next. It’s got a modest feel throughout, but I was impressed with how more grand it became after the closing of the first act, which gave me the sense that this adventure could go places that you’d least expect.

from GameSpot – Game News

WWE 2K20: First Screenshots Revealed, More Info Coming Next Week

Another installment of 2K’s WWE series has been announced, and with it, two images have been revealed. Little is known about the latest version of the game, aptly named WWE 2K20, but more information will be revealed on August 5.

2K Games has revealed two images from its long-running WWE series: one of Universal Champion Brock Lesnar and one of Smackdown Women’s Champion Bayley. Both images feature the WWE superstar’s entrances and can be seen below. While this isn’t a huge reveal for WWE 2K20, more information will be shared on Monday, August 5.

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Teased by 2K, Monday’s reveal will include the cover art for the game, along with gameplay footage and more information. This is the first announcement for the game and no further details have been given.

Last year’s installment–WWE 2K19–made huge changes to the overall game, completely reimagining the MyCareer Mode to be more story driven, adding fun arcade elements, a roster of over 200 superstars, and reintroducing Showcase Mode–which took inspiration from WWE’s documentary series on the WWE Network. The overall changes vastly improved the game and added a bit of fun to the series.

As for what could be coming down the like for WWE 2K20, no one knows at this point. Many fans of the series are hoping for the reintroduction of GM Mode, where players take on the role of Raw or Smackdown GM and try to get better ratings for their weekly programming than the other show. GM Mode has been one of the most talked about features that’s gone missing since UpUpDownDown started its weekly Battle of the Brands video series. In it, WWE superstars Xavier Woods and Tyler Breeze play GM Mode on WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2006.

Additionally, many are wondering not only who the cover star of this year’s game will be–hopefully Becky Lynch–but also which superstar Showcase Mode will focus on. There are plenty of working superstars in the company whose stories would work exceptionally well for that mode.

We’ll learn more on August 5.

from GameSpot – Game News

Monster Hunter World: Iceborne shows off Viper Tobi-Kadachi, Nightshade Paolumu, and Coral Pukei Pukei subspecies

Monster Hunter World: Iceborne shows off Viper Tobi-Kadachi, Nightshade Paolumu, and Coral Pukei Pukei subspecies

A couple dozen new screenshots and artwork for the incoming expansion.

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Everything You Need To Know About FUT In FIFA 20

FIFA is one of the biggest games of the year, and FIFA 20 will likely be no different. Between Kick Off, Career Mode, and Pro Clubs, the series is rarely lacking in content, but the most played mode every year is FIFA Ultimate Team, or FUT for short. EA has finally lifted the lid on all the new FUT features, so read on below for a look at FUT Friendlies, FUT Seasons, new customization options, and the new FUT Icons we know about.

FUT Seasons

Contrary to what you might expect, this has nothing to do with the existing Seasons mode; instead, Seasons in FUT will work similarly to the periods of real-world time that Fortnite, PUBG, and more have popularized in recent years. In FIFA, these time periods are between six and eight weeks long and will include rewards you can earn over the course of a Season. There will also be Season objectives: these are similar to the current daily and weekly objectives but longer-term and with bigger rewards–one example given to us was a loan Ones To Watch Eden Hazard. Completing matches and objectives will net you XP, which will count toward Season rewards.

Club Customization Options And Milestones

FUT 20 will feature a bigger suite of club customization options, with EA making a big change by allowing clubs to display fictional badges, balls, and tifos, among other cosmetic items. For example, you’ll no longer be forced to display a tifo of Neymar or Thomas Mueller–instead, you can erect one of a dabbing unicorn… because of course. You could also use a 16-bit styled ball in your home stadium, rather than just real-world Adidas and Nike ones.

The new customization options are not currently planned to be available in regular packs. Rather, they’ll be rewards for a new type of challenge called Milestones. These are not tied to XP or Seasons but will be attainable by achieving long-term objectives such as scoring 100 headers. More customization options will be added throughout the year, EA says, but they will be untradeable.

FUT Friendlies

FUT Friendlies are a new way of playing casually within FUT–a place to go, EA says, when you don’t fancy the pressure of the Weekend League or Squad Battles. There are no great rewards for playing FUT friendlies, but you do still earn coins, and, crucially, player injuries, contracts, fitness, and your playing record remain unaffected. That means you can use that loan OTW Hazard to your heart’s content.

A big part of the new FUT Friendlies mode is House Rules, which have been lifted wholesale from FIFA 19‘s Kick Off update into FIFA 20’s Ultimate Team portion. As well as those modes added last year–Headers and Volleys, Survival, and so on–new options are being introduced in FUT 20. Those are:

  • Max Chem: Team chemistry doesn’t matter here–regardless of your squad selection, every player will be granted maximum chemistry.
  • Swaps: A standard match of FIFA except a random trio of your first XI players get swapped for three of your opponent’s.
  • King of the Hill: If you can keep the ball under control inside the virtual box painted somewhere on the pitch, you’ll build up a goal meter. Go on to score in the same attack and you’ll have that number added to the scoreline. For example, hold the ball in the box for long enough to build it up to 3 and you’ll add three goals to your score if you get the ball in the back of the net soon after.
  • Mystery Ball: Every time the ball comes back into play, a new match condition will be set. These could range from 3x goals for the next successful strike to maximum speed boost or maximum dribbling boost for the ball holder.

The latter two House Rules options are also coming to Kick Off outside of FUT, while the former two will be available within Ultimate Team only. FUT Friendlies as a whole can be played against AI, a local opponent, or online against friends.

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FUT Icons

Finally, EA revealed a selection of its new Icon cards that will come to Ultimate Team this year. The players revealed so far are English striker Ian Wright, Italian midfield maestro Andrea Pirlo, Brazilian forward Carlos Alberto, Ivorian frontman Didier Drogba, and Dutch star Ronald Koeman.

FIFA 20 launches for PS4, Xbox One, and PC–with legacy editions coming to Switch and older platforms–on September 27.

from GameSpot – Game News