The Captain Toad levels got a co-op boost for Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury

1 day 8 hours ago

As a fan of the Wii U original, I've gone from vaguely expecting to play Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury "when the time is right" to wanting to play it straight away in February – and feeling good about that choice. I wasn't mentally at that point until we saw what Bowser's Fury entailed and learned there would be co-op (albeit only for two players instead of the main campaign's four-player hijinks).

That's quite the turnaround. And funnily enough, it's a similar trajectory as Pikmin 3 Deluxe – another genuinely excellent Wii U gem that I felt was worth picking up again for its extra multiplayer support.

That said, it looks like Nintendo is going the extra mile with Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury. As shown in a gameplay clip on Twitter today, the upgraded Switch title will have four-player co-op in the Captain Toad puzzle levels. Remember those? The lines are pretty blurred for me at this point.

Author
Jordan Devore

Fantasy Network Puts a Fresh Social Media Spin on Classic Metroidvania

1 day 9 hours ago

Raven Travel Studios has this week announced its new project Fantasy Network, a whimsical 2D side-scrolling Metroidvania about winning talent shows to become the president of a colorful world called Holua.

The game’s very first trailer teases its unusual premise, which looks both interesting from a design perspective but also as a catalyst to deliver some interesting social commentary. Studio owner and lead developer Paolo Cattaneo explains:

“I’ve been a game developer for 20 years and dreamed about making Fantasy Network from the beginning. I left my job as a software developer to make this dream a reality, creating a whimsical game which offers my thoughts on the media-centric world we live in.”

In Fantasy Network, players battle monsters across an eye-catching open-world either side of gossiping with locals and piecing together a story which ultimately hides themes darker than its vibrant aesthetic would at first lead you to believe.

Key features beyond the scope of its main story include character customization, a myriad of side quests, and the option to hang out and play mini-games in Holua’s local arcade.

A Kickstarter campaign is planned for the first quarter of 2021 to help fund the last stage of development and the porting of the PC version to consoles.

Author
Alex Gibson

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Zelda: Ocarina of Time demo leak reveals Link could once transform into Navi

1 day 9 hours ago

An astonishing demo build for The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has turned up fresh details on early ideas for Nintendo's N64 masterpiece - such as Link being able to turn into his fairy Navi.

The demo in question was found on an old N64 development cartridge used to hold Nintendo racer F-Zero X. On further inspection, files relating to a 1997 Zelda demo build were also found, partly saved-over but some very much still intact.

Details have now been excitedly shared by the Forest of Illusion Twitter account, which is dedicated to preserving lost bits of Nintendo history. There's a lot to see.

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I Saw Black Clouds, an Interactive Thriller Movie, Announced by Wales Interactive

1 day 9 hours ago
Wales Interactive has announced I Saw Black Clouds, a live-action psychological thriller interactive movie produced by Ghost Dog Films. Starring actors from Penny Dreadful, Outlander, and Avatar, the interactive movie will release in the first quarter of this year on PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC. [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/2021/01/20/i-saw-black-clouds-official-teaser-trailer"] I Saw Black Clouds puts players in control of Kristina, who returns to her hometown after a friend dies. Looking for answers, she unearths a series of dark secrets that reveal a shocking truth. The interactive movie will feature supernatural elements alongside its thriller plotline, suggesting there’s more going on than just a suspicious death. The storyline branches based on decisions made by players during a number of moral choice sequences. In addition, the movie tracks your actions and monitors them in accordance to five personality traits; honesty, strength, morality, tact, and introspection. Your activity is also categorized as displaying either denial, acceptance, or guilt, and these factors are all taken into consideration as the story branches and develops. Tracking of your relationship statuses and personality determines the resolution at the end of the movie, as well as individual scenes and even the storyline as a whole. [widget path="global/article/imagegallery" parameters="albumSlug=i-saw-black-clouds-screenshots&captions=true"] For streamers, a dedicated streaming mode will automatically pause the game when choices are presented, allowing creators to discuss with audience chat and decide on the next course of action. The completely live-action film stars Nicole O'Neill (Penny Dreadful), Rachel Jackson (Outlander) and Larry Rew (Avatar), and was filmed in the UK.
Author
Matt Purslow

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Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition will add remaining expansion packs on consoles

1 day 9 hours ago

The console editions of Two Point Studios' Two Point Hospital are set to be brought up to speed in the coming months, with the arrival and several paid expansions and content packs, previously made available on the PC edition of the lighthearted medical management sim.

Launching March 5, both the Off the Grid and Close Encounters expansions will be available to purchase on PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. The former features a green ecology theme, while the latter deals with an alien invasion in sleepy Two Point County. Both expansions feature a glut of new locations, illnesses, equipment and music, and Tannoy audio.

Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition will add remaining expansion packs on consoles screenshot

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Author
Chris Moyse

Hitman VR - the verdict

1 day 10 hours ago

Alongside today's release of Hitman 3 is a welcome bonus - a mode that allows you to play through the entirety of IO's World of Assassination trilogy in virtual reality. That it works at all is a wonder, but there are a handful of caveats along the way, so here I'll run through what's good, what's not so good and whether it's worth investing for the VR experience alone.

If you didn't already know, Hitman VR is currently an exclusive for PSVR on PS4 (a timed exclusive, it would seem, though we don't know when exactly other headsets will be supported). If you own any of the Hitman trilogy games on PS5, you will only be able to play them in VR if you download and run the PS4 version of the game. And, if you are playing on PS5, you will need the PS5 PSVR adapter in order to get your headset working on that console. It's a faff, but you can claim the adapter for free from Sony - although it typically takes a couple of weeks to arrive.

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Here's the latest news on the big February Final Fantasy XIV reveal stream

1 day 9 hours ago

Square Enix has shifted some things around a bit, rolling several breakout streams into one big one.

That date is steadily approaching, as February 5 is nearly here, which will present the "Announcement Showcase" that the publisher is making a big deal about. It'll be broadcast on YouTube, Niconicolive, and Twitch at 5:30PM PT, and will contain "live interpretation from Japanese to English." So it's not going to be one of those "wait for a translator on Twitter to give us the details after the stream" kind of events.

Now there's a lot of things that Square Enix could share here, but the big speculative stuff is definitely a potential PS5 port and expansion reveal. The latter is pretty much certain, barring any major delays due to the events of the past year; while the former was only vaguely hinted at in the past, at best.

It should be a pretty good time, especially given how lore-heavy and full of Easter eggs these things can be. The game's producer Yoshi P strikes a great balance between mechanics and fluff for these things, so it'll likely appeal to both casual and hardcore fans; just as past streams have.

Watch the Announcement Showcase on Friday, February 5! [FFXIV]

Here's the latest news on the big February Final Fantasy XIV reveal stream screenshot

Author
Chris Carter

Hitman 3 is out now

1 day 9 hours ago

Ian Hitman silhouetted in Hitman 3 promo art.

Ian Hitman’s current trilogy of sandbox stealth-o-murder games wraps up today with Hitman 3, which launched just a few minutes ago. As he fights a vast conspiracy, he’ll do murders in new levels everywhere from England to Dubai, and get into a few of his trademark daft situations. One mission is just a murder mystery potentially starring Ian, an actual murderer, as the detective. Unfortunately, the promised ability for owners of the previous two games to connect and play them inside 3 is delayed.

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Author
Alice O'Connor

AOC Agon AG273QZ review

1 day 10 hours ago

A photo of the AOC Agon AG273QZ gaming monitor

Until recently, anyone looking to buy a 240Hz gaming monitor had to make do with a 1920×1080 resolution. That’s fine if you’re buying a screen that’s 24in or 25in in size, but when many 240Hz monitors stretch that resolution all the way to 27in, many of them become ill-suited to heavy desktop work due to their low pixel densities. Fortunately, the tide’s beginning to turn in this respect, as we’re now seeing an increasing number of 27in, 240Hz monitors with proper 2560×1440 resolutions – a much more agreeable figure for those after a screen that can pull double duties as a work and play monitor. The AOC Agon AG273QZ is one such gaming display, offering a slightly cheaper (and flatter) alternative to Samsung’s similarly-specced Odyssey G7.

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Author
Katharine Castle

Mobile gaming saw a record rise in new players in 2020

1 day 10 hours ago

Earlier in the week, we reported on how gaming raked in record numbers in revenue across 2020, in part due to the launch of new platforms PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, and in part due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which kept many across the globe indoors and under lockdown legislation.

In news that will likely come of no surprise, mobile gaming was one of the most lucrative and active fields of the medium. A collaborative report between the number-crunchers at The NPD Group and Sensor Tower reveals that of the 303.7 million mobile users in the U.S. and Canada, a huge 238.7 million recognize themselves as "mobile gamers".

This is an increase of 12% on the same statistics gathered in 2019, with previous reports seeing only a single-digit year-on-year raise in "mobile gamers". Play time has also increased, with many mobile players estimating an increase of around two hoursgaming  per week, clocking in an average of eight hours of play time over 2019's six hours.

"Mobile is the most popular platform in the video game industry, with wide and increasing appeal across all age groups," said NPD Group analyst Mat Piscatella. "Its strength comes not only from its accessibility and availability but also from the incredible diversity in mobile titles available. From evergreen properties such as Candy Crush Saga, Pokémon Go, and Clash of Clans, to newer hits like Call of Duty: Mobile, and Among Us, mobile gaming's growth is certain to continue well into the future."

Author
Chris Moyse

Pokemon Snap on Switch is 6.8 GB, will have some form of online play

1 day 10 hours ago

The other day, we got an actual release date for New Pokémon Snap, and I couldn't be happier that it's basically on the horizon. The original game still absolutely slaps, so I hope this new iteration delivers even a fraction of that feel-good fun.

In the meantime, we can look to the future, as Nintendo has unveiled several details about this upcoming version. As expected it's going to be a full $59.99 release, but now we know that it'll clock in at 6.8 GB in size. Here's the curious part though: the listing also notes that it will have "online play" of some sort, as well as cloud save support.

Will it be in the form of innocent "picture uploading and liking," perhaps? Like a sort of pseudo-social network? Or will it feature a legit online play component? Time will tell, but we know that there's going to be a lot of Pokémon news coming this year in honor of the 25th anniversary.

New Pokémon Snap [Nintendo]

Pokemon Snap on Switch is 6.8 GB, will have some form of online play screenshot

Author
Chris Carter

Check Out the Making of Genshin Impact’s Beautiful Dragonspine Region

1 day 11 hours ago

Genshin Impact’s Dragonspine update is its largest yet, not only adding new quest content but an entirely new region to the world of Tevyat. The terrain of this snowy, mountainous area is in stark contrast to what we’ve seen before, which makes exploring its freezing wilderness all the more compelling.

Today, in a mini-documentary called Snow-Covered Path, developer miHoYo has shed some light on the development processes behind Dragonspine’s creation. It’s fascinating to hear just how much research and effort goes into forging these spectacular environments.

It’s explained that the Dragonspine is based on the Matterhorn mountain in Europe, which captured the imagination of the team for its striking conical shape. Also, that its relatively small size compared to the rest of the open-world meant that miHoYo spent a substantial amount of time crafting interior cave sections to maximize the explorable area.

There are a bunch more interesting takeaways, too, but I’ll let you watch for yourselves — you’ll need to pop on closed captions for the translation, but do make sure you have your sound on as the music is excellent.

Author
Alex Gibson

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The latest major update for Horizon Zero Dawn PC will be one of its last

1 day 11 hours ago

Guerrilla Games has launched a major update for the PC edition of Horizon Zero Dawn. Version 1.10, which is live in-game right now, brings a variety of graphical improvements, performance tweaks, and bug fixes to Aloy's mechanized world of adventure.

In doing so, Guerrilla Games took time to note that Version 1.10 will be one of the last major updates to Horizon's PC port, as the team will now be shifting its priorities toward sequel Horizon Forbidden West, revealed during Sony's PlayStation 5 2020 event and currently in production for PS4 and PS5, with an eye to release at some point later in 2021.

"As our team continues development on our upcoming title Horizon Forbidden West, we are shifting to less frequent updates for Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition for PC after this patch," said the developer. "Please note that we will continue to monitor our community spaces as always! We want to thank you all for your continued support and for sending in your crash reports over the past months. The information we received through your reports was invaluable to further investigate and help fix some of the trickier issues that we fixed in Patch 1.10."

This doesn't necessarily mean that Horizon Zero Dawn on PC will not receive further improvements - and lord knows it needed them at its less-than-stellar launch - but clearly Guerrilla are essentially done getting the desktop edition up to scratch, and will now be focusing development on Aloy's next jaunt into the mechanical wilderness.

Author
Chris Moyse

What Comes After is a cuddle and a kind word when you need it most

1 day 12 hours ago

What Comes After is a game themed around death, with themes of suicide.

Bertie: I never realised how wise babies can be. When the baby on the train told me it's not that babies don't understand adults, it's the other way around, I felt as though I'd been hit in the face with a profound baby toy. I'd never really thought about it like that before. I always assumed they were the ones who needed teaching - but do they? They seem pretty happy and content with their lot. It's only in the many ways adults complicate things that life becomes more, well, complicated.

This is What Comes After; this is the way the game makes you think. It is a game about life, about reflecting on a life, and waving away all the complexity to enjoy simply being. It's the story of a young lady called Vivi who has lost her way a bit, and one night on the way home from work, on the train, she falls asleep. She literally drifts off, and she finds herself on a spirit version of the same train. A train taking spirits to... what comes after. What follows are many conversations with the once-living on their final journey, and the nuggets of wisdom they have to impart.

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Among Us devs explain why updates are "taking so long"

1 day 12 hours ago

The story of Among Us really is the stuff of fairytales: originally released back in 2018 by a dev team of three, last year it suddenly became one of the most popular titles in the world after several high-profile streamers began to play it. In a year of lockdowns, Among Us appealed to many as a way to entertain themselves on video calls, and even some American politicians got in on the action.

But this massive spike in players brought challenges - a wave of cheaters being one of them - and developer Innersloth had to make some serious changes to the way it worked. In a new blog post, the dev team has addressed why some features are taking longer to implement than some expected.

"Among Us gained incredible traction pretty late into 2020 that we weren't expecting, and that meant a lot of change for us," Innersloth explained. "...Not only did we need to switch back to working on Among Us after thinking it was done, but we also needed to set ourselves up more sustainably to work on the game. We had to spend two months just restructuring, figuring out new processes, and getting external partners to help us manage on board."

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Horizon Zero Dawn devs shift focus to sequel after latest PC patch

1 day 11 hours ago

A screenshot of Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn doing the peace sign in the game's photo mode.Horizon Zero Dawn

was pretty darn buggy when it came out on PC last year. It was a shame considering it was the first bug PlayStation exclusive to make the jump to PC. But Guerrilla Games have been steadily updating it to fix all sorts of problems, and yesterday the game received its 1.10 patch, adding in a couple more crash fixes and performance improvements.

Notably, this patch marks the start of Guerrilla slowing down on their HZD updates, so they can shift focus to work on the game’s sequel, Horizon Forbidden West.

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Author
Imogen Beckhelling

Assassin's Creed manga features fan-favourite Shao Jun

1 day 12 hours ago

Fan-favourite Assassin's Creed character Shao Jun will get her own manga, to be released in stores and online on 16th February.

Assassin's Creed: Blade of Shao Jun chronicles the latter adventures of the character following her visit to Ezio seen in the short film Assassin's Creed Embers.

Set in 1526 against the backdrop of a great political purge by Emperor Jiajing, the manga sees Shao Jun work on her own to defeat a mysterious group after the rest of her Brotherhood has been killed.

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Best Diamatti loadout and class setup in Warzone

1 day 11 hours ago

The Diamatti from COD: Warzone on a black background.

The Diamatti is a secondary weapon with the power to completely shred your enemies. With its burst capability and Dual Wield option, you’ll be able to run around zapping foes down like you’re using a shotgun, one-bursting people like there’s no tomorrow. The Diamatti can thus be kitted out with a pretty sweet class, designed to maximise damage at close ranges in Warzone and minimise the chance your enemies have to spot you on the minimap. So without further ado, here’s the best Diamatti loadout for Warzone.

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Author
James Law

The Man Who Created Captain Falcon, Fox McCloud, Majora's Mask and More Has Retired from Nintendo

1 day 11 hours ago
Takaya Imamura, the Nintendo artist and designer who gave us characters like Captain Falcon and Fox McCloud and more – not to mention the name and visual identity of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask – has retired from the company. As reported by Kotaku, Imamura announced that it was his last day working at Nintendo on his Facebook page, after 32 years with the company. “This is my last day going to work. I took a selfie with the empty office. I guess I won’t be coming in here anymore. As you’d expect, I’ll miss it,” Kotaku's translation of his commemorative Facebook post reads. [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/2015/11/13/star-fox-zero-introducing-star-fox-trailer"] Imamura worked on character designs across the F-Zero and Star Fox series, creating iconic Nintendo characters like Captain Falcon and Fox McCloud among many more. More recently, he directed two Steel Diver games, and was a supervisor on the last two Smash Bros. releases. He was also the art director of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, responsible for the design of the eponymous mask and the game's name, as well as the character Tingle.
Author
Jordan Oloman

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The Mario 35 event, which grants 350 Platinum Points for little effort, is live

1 day 11 hours ago

Super Mario Bros. 35 is still trucking, inching closer to its expiration date. But before then, Nintendo has a quick little event in store for us.

The challenge? Kill 3.5 million Bowsers from 11PM PT on January 18 through 10:59PM PT on January 25. Or more simply, you only need to kill one Bowser to net a potential reward of 350 Platinum Points (which can be used on physical or digital goods at My Nintendo).

You can defeat your Bowser through the standard mode or the new event; which I'd highly recommend as it's catered around finding Bowser quicker. I ran the event several times, and since you start with a Fire Flower, you can take out Bowser fairly quickly if you run across one (whether it's in a castle level or via someone sending it your way as a hazard).

Just to be sure I ran a few courses and took out around five Bowsers over the course of roughly 10 minutes. It's easy! If you have Switch Online you have Mario 35, so you may as well dive in, get it done, and (probably) reap the 350 platinum benefit.

Since these events can be a little finicky sometimes in terms of timelines, we've provided the official documentation below just in case. Make a reminder to do it! It's one of the simplest ways to get platinum yet, that you can use on stuff like this.

Take on Bowser and earn 350 Platinum Points in the Super Mario Bros. 35 World Count Challenge [My Nintendo]

The Mario 35 event, which grants 350 Platinum Points for little effort, is live screenshot

Author
Chris Carter

Kill Predator in Fortnite and you get his invisibility tech

1 day 12 hours ago

Fortnite's previously-teased Predator crossover is now fully operational, with the masked hunter available to unlock for current battle pass holders via new challenges.

Predator has also become a roaming boss, able to be found and battled on the battle royale map for all players. Look for him in the appropriately jungle-themed Stealthy Stronghold.

Defeat Predator and it'll drop Predator's Cloaking Device, which lets you become nearly invisible for a short time. If this sounds a bit overpowered, well, this is a supposed to be a reward for killing a tough boss who everyone else is after too.

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God of War Studio's Unannounced Second Project Is Seemingly Still in the Works

1 day 12 hours ago
Sony Santa Monica's unannounced second project looks like it's still in the works, according to a job listing for an Art Director position at the studio. A tweet from the official Sony Santa Monica account (below) notes that the studio is "seeking an experienced Art Director for the development of a new unannounced title". There's not much else to go on in the job listing itself, beyond the fact that it's aiming to be a "genre-defining" game, and that it will involve "characters and creatures".
Author
Jordan Oloman

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The Borderlands games and more are going cheap on Nintendo Switch

1 day 12 hours ago

The Borderlands Legendary Collection is going cheap on Amazon as part of a bigger deal around Take 2's games. Including Borderlands 1, 2 and the Pre-Sequel, it's a solid translation of the famous madcap shoot-and-loot sci-fi games (though doesn't include the third games of the series).

Not only that, but there's a sudden glut of notable Switch deals on Amazon right now, including discounts on Mario Odyssey, Hasbro Games and more. Some of them are good, some of them are pretty normal, but we've collated the most worthy ones just below for you to check out yourself.

Those who are looking for more deals can always find them at Eurogamer, with discounts on games, consoles and more. Check out the cheapest places to pre order Pokémon Snap, or find out the latest on PS5 stock availability here! Or you can always head to the Jelly Deals Twitter and follow us for all the best info on deals everywhere.

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PC specs offer large hopes that small rigs will run The Medium

1 day 12 hours ago

We are just a week out from the launch of Bloober Team's latest chilling horror jaunt, The Medium, which will launch on Xbox Series X and PC January 28. For those of you gaming on the latter platform, at least one impending fear can be put to rest, as the developer has released the rig requirements need to guide Marianne through her waking nightmare.

It's a relatively complex state of affairs, as the visual guide below mostly caters for 30FPS running at 1080p and above. So if you want the silky smoothness of 60FPS, and really want to rally up the resolution, then be sure to add a little extra juice to the statistics listed. For the most part, many modern rigs will run The Medium at low-to-mid settings, but given the action-RPG is visual heavy, with emphasis on atmosphere and effects, top-tier might be the way to go. The Medium doesn't require, but recommends that players use an SSD.

PC specs offer large hopes that small rigs will run The Medium screenshot

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Author
Chris Moyse

Even The Predator is in Fortnite now, here's how to unlock him

1 day 12 hours ago

We knew The Predator was coming because of a few recent quests; and because nearly all Fornite info can be datamined, we knew it was coming on January 20.

This past week Epic invited players to locate a crashed ship in an area that was rife with the creature's classic clicking sounds. Amid rewards of a very Predator persuasion, it was obvious that the character was coming at some point. Now we know exactly what he looks like in-game thanks to a new blog post and a trailer, which you can catch below.

Having the prerequisites done for some time, I updated Fortnite and jumped in to see what the rest of the hubbub involved.

The Predator is part of the battle pass (so you'll need that), and all you need to do to unlock him is take him out in Sneaky Stronghold in battle royale (he's typically in the northwest corner near his ship).

Even The Predator is in Fortnite now, here's how to unlock him screenshot

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Author
Chris Carter