13 September, 2015

This Week In Videogames – 13/09/2015

When my Twitter feed is littered with the same meaningless hash tag it usually indicates one of three things; a tragedy has befallen the United States, a videogame has released and the publisher is retweeting every somewhat positive comment, or a sports event happening. Oddly though, #NationalVideoGameDay appears to be something else entirely, something far darker, and almost certainly American. I’m expecting society to collapse in on itself sometime within the next few hours, so enjoy this week’s news while you can!

This Week In Videogames – 13/09/2015

LFG (Must Have Clean Laundry)

You may think I’m being sarcastic and snarky when I say that this Destiny advert (below) has established stronger characters than the actual game. Fresh from Japan, as if it could be aired anywhere else.

In a weirdly charitable move by Activision – there’s two words I never thought I would write in the same sentence – Destiny’s publisher is offering to send out free USB drives to players who can prove they are “existing and active” Destiny players on some last generation consoles. Due to the size of Destiny’s most recent update, the game is unplayable on certain Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 models with small hard drives. Currently, Destiny requires all files to be held on the internal hard drive rather than an external one, however Activision says a patch is on its way to remove that limitation.

(Via Gamespot).

EA Drops Hot Facts Into Your Zone

Last week EA announced the upcoming Star Wars: Battlefront multiplayer beta due to land early October, and the inclusion of a game mode called Drop Zone. This week they decided to tell us what it actually is; effectively king of the hill, where the hill is a series of drop pods falling onto the battlefield. An 8 versus 8 mode, the winner is the team with five pod captures, or the majority after the 10 minute timer expires. If a pod proves particularly fickle, with neither team able to capture it for long, another pod will be sent down and then both need to be captured. Each pod also contains a ‘Power Pickup’, a perk or kill streak by the sounds of it. According to the Lead Level Designer, Dennis Brännvall, “Camping doesn’t really pay off”, in Drop Zone. 

Star Wars: Battlefront drop zone

Deathwings of Steel

There is never downtime in the Emperor’s service, meaning Warhammer/Warhammer 40,000 have a perpetually warm seat at our metaphorical news table. This time it’s Space Hulk: Deathwing, a first-person shooter adaptation of Space Hulk the boardgame. Deathwing features both; a ‘solo game mode’ where you appear to be joined by AI companions, who you can order around to some degree or another, and class-based co-op play, in which the squad leader harnesses the power of their own mind as a Librarian. The game is written by Gav Thorpe, a familiar name to those who wander the halls of the Black Library, as the author of dozens of Warhammer novels and countless rule and supplemental books.

Space Hulk: Deathwing

Deathwing features a ‘dynamic AI’ system that scales the ferocity of the Genestealer attacks to the abilities of the players, “…ensuring players will always be challenged”, publisher Focus Home Interactive says. The game looks hot if nothing else! Click to enlarge.

Space Hulk: Deathwing
Space Hulk: DeathwingSpace Hulk: Deathwing

What’s An Army Without A Fleet?

Battlefleet Gothic: Armada got a surprisingly informative gameplay trailer (below) this week, though it didn’t answer the one question I had after writing the last story; will there be Space Hulks? What the trailer did show was “fully customisable” Imperium, Chaos, Ork, and Eldar ships trading blows in the colourful void. The gameplay seems pleasantly tactically complex; ship functionality is dependent upon the health of certain areas of the craft, and the GUI (Graphical User Interface) looks like it fell out of the nineties. More importantly, the Chaos ships look resplendent in all their specific Dark God glory, Khorne, Nurgle, Tzeentch, and Slaanesh are all present and accounted for. The Navigators report Battlefleet Gothic is inbound to the PC in 2016.

(Via Rock, Paper, Shotgun).


Last week I said some pretty harsh things about UK retailer GAME, because I’ve never, as far as I can remember, taken part in a wholly positive transaction with the establishment, neither in store nor online. But some customers who pre-ordered Super Mario Maker had it far worse; in some cases GAME charged the customers up to seven times, that’s £328.93! GAME apologised for the issue on Twitter. 

24 hours – the same time it takes them to email an Xbox Live code.

Halo 5 Embraces Fascism?

Not really, but that’s what the real press do with headlines right? Unlike previous Halo titles, or indeed most multiplayer first-person shooters on the consoles, Halo 5: Guardians will not allow players to vote or veto maps, says Josh Holmes, Studio Head. Theoretically this means no map, even the ‘bad’ ones will feel the cold shoulder of the community, because the developer will control map rotation. Destiny has the same system and I feel it works well there, surely removing a step can only speed the matchmaking process up?

(Via Destructoid).

Heading East For The Winter

Total War: ATTILA gets a new culture pack this Tuesday (the 15th of September). Empires of Sand adds the Aksum, Himyar, and Tanukhids as playable factions, bringing with them; new religions that spilt building chains, new “reactive religious events”, new units, and more. As far as paying to play with factions already in the game (in some form at least) goes, this is one of the better examples. Empires of Sand at least adds factions that some amount of the player base has been clamouring for – myself included. 

I Couldn’t Make This Up

Despite what you think, I’m not making this up, Ubisoft did indeed claim they were opening a theme park in Malaysia. The park is due to open in 2020 in Kuala Lumpur, with 10,000 square-meters of indoor floor space, Ubisoft hopes to, “…immerse people in reactive worlds where they can interact with each other and become the heroes of their own life-sized game.”, according to the UbiBlog.

(Via Kotaku).

Not Bitter At All 

It couldn’t all be positive news on the Destiny front could it? Following Ex-Bungie composer Marty O’Donnell’s successful court ruling last week, which saw Bungie returning pay, stock, and more, Bungie have filed their own legal response. Here’s some choice quotes from O’Donnell’s lawyer, Tom Buscaglia, once again VentureBeat has a full, comprehensive story on the matter.
“…the only reason for them to file this is to make a public record for the PR.” 
“The prior 10 pages of garbage is an obvious and transparent attempt at damage control by recasting the ruling as a huge win by Bungie. But, all they won was the ability to strip Marty of possessing or performing Music of the Spheres…” 
“As far as I’m concerned, this ‘big win’ was nothing more than a petty vindictive effort to personally hurt Marty by using copyright law … they want to trumpet this as this as a huge victory. Instead, I think this was despicable and they ought to be ashamed.”
 (Via VentureBeat).

She’s Nuclear

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain kicked off the month of September, blowing critics away, disappointing fans, and sapping my will to live for about a week, but I’m afraid our verdict’s still out – entirely my fault, both the game and my review are quite long. Konami urged caution this week, warning players not to take the buddy Quiet into missions 29 or 42, due to a critical ‘non-progression’ bug. I have no indication of how prevalent this bug is, but it is certainly worth heeding, given that you’re looking at roughly 30-40 hours of game time to reach those missions, in my experience – then again, at one point I very much wanted to erase my save data, so don’t allow me or Konami to stand in your way! Konami’s Japanese website has further details on the bug (in English too). 

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain quiet

Rather than finish on a dour note of legal action or game-shattering bugs, I leave you with this beautiful video…

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