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E3 2018: The Last Of Us Part 2 Pre-Order Guide For The US

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 04:16

The 2013 game The Last of Us is widely considered one of the best games of the PS3 generation. It was impeccably crafted, with cinematic style, satisfying game mechanics, and a story that cut right to the bone. All of which is to say, if you're excited for The Last of Us Part 2, you're far from alone. While we don't have a release date for this PS4 exclusive, you can already lock in your pre-order.

We got a better look at The Last of Us Part 2's gameplay and story, which will follow Ellie several years after the first game, at E3 2018. Ellie is LGBTQ, and after she shares a tender moment with another woman in the trailer she instantaneously shifts into the brutality of their world. The remainder of the trailer shows off the title's stealthy and visceral combat, with more emphasis on the gritty violence than ever before. Naughty Dog has also confirmed that The Last of Us Part 2 will have multiplayer.

If you're ready to secure your copy of The Last of Us Part 2, you'll probably want to know what kind of pre-order bonuses to expect and what comes in the various editions. We have you covered below.

The Last of Us Part 2 Pre-Order Bonuses

No pre-order bonuses have been announced at this time.

The Last of Us Part 2 Standard Edition

George Lucas Shares His Crazy Star Wars Ideas For Movies That Were Never Made

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 03:30

Most people know that George Lucas sold his production company Lucasfilms to Disney in 2012, but what you might not know is that at the time, Lucas had ideas in the works for Star Wars Episode VII through Episode IX. Disney has gone a different way, and Lucas no longer has creative input on the Star Wars saga in any major way, but apparently, people at Lucasfilms were aware of his ideas and have simply kept a tight lid on them.

Star Wars fans will now be thrilled to know that the veil has been partially lifted on Lucas' ideas for the episodes. Den of Geek reports that a particularly attentive Twitter user found a pretty significant clue into what Lucas' version of the films would have looked like. The clue comes from the companion book to AMC's TV show, James Cameron's Story of Science Fiction.

In the book, George Lucas is quoted talking about his ideas for the films, saying that they, "were going to get into a microbiotic world. But there's this world of creatures that operate differently than we do. I call them the Whills. And the Whills are the ones that actually control the universe. The feed off the force."

Obviously I could go on and on about everything that is amazing in the Star Wars films, but one of the most striking things about them is the creativity involved in all the different alien characters, their societies, their characteristics, and how well they fit into the stories, and this is no exception. They are essentially a bunch of tiny creatures who happen to have control over the entire universe by tapping into the largest force there is, so large it's literally called THE force; what a bizzare contradiction.

Lucas went on to state that, "of course, a lot of the fans would have hated it, just like they did Phantom Menace and everything, but at least the whole story from beginning to end would have been told." Clearly Lucas has some feelings about the elements of the story that remain unshared, and sadly, it is unlikely that this film will ever be put into motion, especially without the creative vision of Lucas himself. But for now, fans can at least start theorizing with this little peek into the Star Wars that could have been.

E3 2018: Hitman 2 Is More Hitman Episodes, Whether It's Called Episodic Or Not

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 03:24

For such a radical change in the formula, 2016's Hitman burrowed itself into the fan consciousness as the new paradigm for the series going forward. The episodic format turned many skeptical diehards turned into true-believers, which must have made the announcement of a traditional release model for Hitman 2 jarring. Still, creative director Christian Elverdam told GameSpot at E3 2018 that the experience taught them some valuable lessons that will impact the sequel, with or without episodes.

"I think we convinced a lot of people that episodic really worked," he said. "The feedback we got was that episodic forced you to go into each level and really go into all the details, which I thought personally was a big victory. We were going with a sandbox formula, so it was pretty important for us that people really understand. If you just go in, maybe shoot the guy, and say 'okay I finished Miami,' you wouldn't really get it, because you need to take in all the details."

The rebooted Hitman that debuted in 2016 was instead a clockwork machine of moving parts. Non-player characters were props in the ultimate kill, moving about the map with their own motivations and stories that could be exploited for your own gains. Drip-feeding these missions forced otherwise casual Hitman fans to act like more ravenous ones, consuming it all, learning each of the pieces of the machine until they developed a super-power. It was successful because it focused players' attention in a way that the game hadn't before.

"At the same time, we followed some comments who also said they weren't satisfied that they couldn't experience the full story, and that it took a long time before it was done," Elverdam continued. "What we're talking about now is the best of both worlds. Now most people know what an elusive target is and they know we have a very strong live season. So we're doing more of that than we did before, but the story itself--the main arc of what happens in Hitman 2--is available day and date."

In other words, the episodic Hitman may have trained players how to engage with the game they way they'd hoped, but IO now feels confident enough to take off the training wheels and remove the frustration of a slowly meted out story in the process. Elverdam also added that it has more live content like elusive targets planned, but having the full suite of maps gives the studio more flexibility. While the episodic season limited it to only produce targets in maps that were already released, now it can choose from any map at any time.

The result is a mission structure that feels incredibly reminiscent of Hitman 2016. In a mission at a race track, I had to cautiously and slowly peel back layers of the puzzle, acquiring different costumes to get new tools to acquire new costumes, until I was finally perfectly positioned to take out my target. The demo was only one stage, but it felt perfectly familiar. For fans of Hitman's episodic structure, then, this is a less jarring change than they might expect. It's a continuation of what came before, so it should feel like a new batch of stages.

With a more defined campaign that will release all at once, the difficulty ramp may feel more welcoming too. Designing a challenging Hitman map requires subtleties that players could lose when they take months-long breaks. Everdam shared some thoughts on striking the right difficulty balance in one of Hitman's murder puzzles.

"So one of the first things we do is say: what kind of problem do we want the player to solve? If you had a target that stood still with ten guards that never moved, that would be a very hard problem to solve. So we look at how mobile are the patrol routes. Number of guards is a factor, it's not the only factor, but it's a factor. And then finally, it's sort of like peeling an onion in terms of how you progress. Physical traversal--a path like a drainpipe or something like that, how hard is that to get to, that would be your physical difficulty. And the second is disguises, and typically we don't give you the most powerful disguises up-front. So let's say you have a waiter who's very easy to isolate and take out. He's going to give you one layer of the onion but then you probably need to show more skill for better costumes."

With the potential for a smoother difficulty ramp, and the promise of much more live content than the last game, IO hopes to continue using the strengths of the episodic model without some of its drawbacks. Time will tell if the live content keeps players engaged as long as the episodic model kept them coming back, but the studio has taken the lessons of its experiment to heart. They may just turn skeptics to believers all over again.

Halo: Infinite Is So Ambitious It Needed A New Game Engine, Developer Says

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 03:00

Microsoft started its E3 2018 briefing with a trailer for Halo: Infinite. As we later learned, this was really more of a trailer for the new Slipspace engine that powers the game, not the game itself.

Now, 343 studio boss Chris Lee has spoken up to say Halo: Infinite is so ambitious that it needed a new game engine. Responding to a tweet from a concerned fan, Lee said, "Halo: Infinite is an ambitious new game and we needed to build a new engine to support that."

Some fans are understandably concerned about the state of Halo given that it has been almost three years since the release of Halo 5: Guardians in October 2015. Microsoft has continued to update and support Halo 5 and Halo: The Master Chief Collection, but fans always want something new.

Halo: Infinite's reveal this week was a step towards that, but not the kind of announcement some might have wanted. After the Xbox briefing, 343 clarified in a blog post that the trailer was for the engine, not the game, but this was not communicated on the stage itself. Even the blog post suggested Halo: Infinite is a long way off, as the title of post is "Our Journey Begins."

343 studio head Chris Lee has since confirmed that Halo: Infinite will tell a more Master Chief-centric story, which is good news after Halo 5 went in a different direction. The story in Halo: Infinite will begin after the events of Halo 5, but that is all we know so far.

No release date has been set for Halo: Infinite, but from the sound if it, the game is not coming out anytime soon. Keep checking back with GameSpot for more.

DC's Wonder Woman 2: Title Confirmed, Surprise Return Of Key Character Revealed

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 02:54

Following last week's reveal of the movie's logo, production on the sequel to DC's Wonder Woman is now underway. It has been confirmed that the movie is titled Wonder Woman 1984, and now director Patty Jenkins has teased the surprise return of one of the first film's key characters.

Jenkins took to Twitter to post an on-set image of Chris Pine in the role of Captain Steve Trevor. Pine played the role in Wonder Woman, but fans will know that he died at the end of that movie--which was itself set 40 years before the sequel.

Clearly Pine's return is not meant to be a big twist, given it has been revealed by the director this early on in production. So quite how Trevor is back for the sequel and what role he will play in the story will remain a mystery for now, although the obvious '80s setting for the photo suggests it's not just a flashback. In the meantime, here's Jenkins's tweet:

Welcome to WONDER WOMAN 1984, Steve Trevor! #WW84 pic.twitter.com/BCLARdVuTu

— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) June 13, 2018

As for the title Wonder Woman 1984, we've known for some time that it will be set in the '80s, and star Gal Gadot also recently posted a suitably retro on-set image. The film hits theaters on November 1, 2019 and also stars Kristin Wiig as the villainous Cheetah.

Last year, it was reported that Wonder Woman 1984 will "send Diana against the forces of Soviet Union in the closing days of the Cold War." In addition, Jenkins has teased that the movie will be a "funny and a great love story [with] a couple new unbelievable characters who I'm so excited about, who are very different than were in the last movie."

Incredibles 2 Puts Its Female Super In The Spotlight, Where She Was Born To Be

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 02:52

There's an interesting turn happening in the superhero genre of movies. After years of films fronted by male heroes, women are finally getting their chance at the spotlight. With Wonder Woman being a massive box office success-and a sequel on the way--there is also a movie for Captain Marvel in production, while Ant-Man and the Wasp is elevating its female lead.

There's one superhero franchise, though, that is putting its female hero front-and-center, over her male counterpart. In Disney/Pixar's Incredibles 2, the roles have been reversed. While in the first movie, it was Mr. Incredible who was sent off to relive his superhero glory, this time, it's Elastigirl's turn. This movie finds her becoming the public face for all supers. It's important to the film, but also sends a powerful message to young viewers who still aren't used to seeing a female hero taking charge and leading the way.

"You would kind of go 'Wow, do we really need that message?' But yeah, we do," Holly Hunter, who voices Elastigirl, tells GameSpot. "We need that information, we need to see... we need those images. We need those stories of women doing this kind of thing."

Of course, a strong female hero is nothing new to the Incredibles franchise. The first film, released in 2004, was sure to show just how powerful Helen--Elastigirl's real name--and her daughter Violet were.

"We had strong women before strong women were cool," writer-director Brad Bird jokes. "It's not like [Helen's] character's changing. Violet was a strong character. [Edna] was a strong character. I think that that was just a natural extension. It wasn't like we were sitting here going, 'Here's a political statement that we want to make.' It was more like, 'This will screw Bob up. This will be fun to watch.' That's more the motivation of it. It's exploring the characters and having fun with it."

Producer John Walker agrees, adding, "Elastigirl says in the first film, 'Leave the saving of the world to the men? I don't think so.' There's nothing in the second film that wouldn't have worked completely fine in the first one 15 years ago."

However, there is one thing about Helen in the new movie that's very different from the first Incredibles. Viewers are going to see what Elastigirl the solo hero is like--much as they did with Bob's Mr. Incredible sting in the last film.

"They do it differently from, I mean, Helen does it very differently from Mr. Incredible," Hunter teases. "Their styles are totally, completely different problem in terms of solving problems. Helen is hired because she's gonna wreak less collateral damage, and I do think that's the thing that I like best about the portrait of her. Is how cool she is."

"She's jumping on her motorcycle and she's going up the sides of buildings, and doing these great... You hear the excitement for it, in her voice," Walker says. "She's getting to do this thing she feels she was born to do."

Incredibles 2 is in theaters on June 15.

DC's Green Lantern Corps Series Has Some Real "Daddy Issues"

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 02:45

The Green Lantern comics can essentially be summed up like this: it's about space cops. However, throughout writer Robert Venditti's tenure on Green Lantern and now Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps, the series has been transformative, questioning the ideals of how to enforce the law and asking, "How far is too far?" when stopping those who will continually hurt others. In Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps #46--which hits stores today--the story truly hits home on the parent/child relationship. More specifically, a dysfunctional one.

The current storyline, now hitting Part 5, is called "Darkstars Rising." In it, a new force called the Darkstars has appeared. While this team first appeared in DC Comics back in 1992, they were disbanded in 2005, and this new incarnation is a more twisted version of the original team, as they murder criminals, so the villains don't have a chance to do it again.

The most notable member of this new manifestation of the team is former Green Lantern Tomar Tu. He was son of the famed Tomar Re who gave his life in battle and was the mentor to Hal Jordan. Tu is joined by Guy Gardner, who should be a familiar name to any Green Lantern fan. The former Green Lantern/Warrior/Yellow Ring Bearer/Red Lantern has a torrid past which is resurfacing in Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps #46, as Gardner comes from an abusive relationship with his father. Check out a preview of that issue below.

Gardner's journey has led him to leave the Green Lantern Corps in such of more final justice. He's a character that refuses to give up in battle. "It's because no punch he ever takes hurts as bad as the ones his dad used to give him, and that's kind of where he gets his will from," explained writer Robert Venditti. "It's just this really fascinating, heartbreaking aspect of Guy where he almost believes he deserves the punishment, and the punches in the face, and this is why he's always starting fights because he still has that weight that he carries with him from when he was a child and his father was beating him.

"Guy carries a lot of that anger, and so as the Darkstar mantles are going out, in a sort of automated way, they seek out people who have these thoughts of lethal justice, and go to them, and ask people to volunteer to become a Darkstar."

The "daddy issues" don't stop with Guy and his father. "These themes that we have that have been running throughout the entire series that deal with parents and children in general," continued Venditti. "You have Hal and his father, Guy and his father, Soranik and Sinestro, Tomar-Tu and Tomar-Re, the Guardians and how they view the Green Lanterns as children. [The] parent-child dynamic is something we dealt with throughout the entire series. So, we're gonna see a lot of ways in which that affects and changes characters as we get to the end of the story."

The new story is expansive, including characters like Superman's arch-nemesis Zod and Eradicator--one of the four returning Supermen after the Man of Steel's death in 1993. Additionally, there's a story involving Highfather and Orion, two of the New Gods, so this dynamic between parent and child is far-reaching into the DC Universe and something any reader should easily be able to relate to.

You can pick up the five parts of "Darkstars Rising"--starting with issue #41 and continuing with the June 13 release of #46--by getting yourself some copies of Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps at your local comic shop or through the digital market with apps like Comixology.

E3 2018: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate For Switch Works With GameCube Controllers

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 02:13

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the new Super Smash Bros. game for Nintendo Switch, and was announced during the E3 2018 Nintendo Direct. This means that Ultimate will likely be the primary version used in competitive play moving forward, and in good news for pro players, the game will also supports the GameCube controller.

While we had hands-on experience with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate using Nintendo Switch Pro Controllers, the game will be compatible with multiple styles of control. Here's what we know:

  • The game is compatible with Nintendo Switch Pro Controllers
  • There will be a single Joy-Con control method
  • GameCube controllers will be compatible by using a GameCube adaptor. This will only be possible in console's docked mode
  • Existing Wii U GameCube Adaptors will work with the Nintendo Switch.
  • Both GameCube controllers and GameCube adaptors will be made available for sale again, sometime around the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
  • The new GameCube Controller will feature the new Super Smash Bros. logo.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be available on December 7, 2018. For more on the game, check a look at these articles:

E3 2018: Fortnite Dev Announces World Cup Event, Explains Why It's Different Than Overwatch League

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 02:08

Fortnite developer Epic Games has announced more details on the $100 million that it is pouring into competitive Fortnite tournaments and seemingly called out the Overwatch League.

In a blog post, Epic said the $100 million will be spread across community-organised events, online events, and "major" organized tournaments in the United States and abroad. According to Epic, "anyone can participate, and anyone can win."

One of the big tournaments is the Fortnite World Cup. Qualifiers for this event start in Fall 2018 and continue thereafter until the finals in late 2019. There are no specifics available as of yet regarding where the tournaments will take place or how you can participate, however.

In the Fortnite World Cup, Epic will focus on Solo and Duos, though the studio stressed that people who enjoy Squads will be able to take part in the competition as well.

Also in its blog post, Epic made a point to talk about how its investment in eSports differs from what others are doing in the space. Though Epic never mentions Activision Blizzard or the Overwatch League by name, it is pretty clear that the comparison is aimed at Overwatch League.

Here's what Epic said: "This is for you, the players. Qualifications for the Fortnite World Cup will be based on merit. Epic will not be selling teams or franchises, and won't allow third-party leagues to do so either."

More details on all the specifics about the Fortnite's eSports tournaments--including rules, details on platforms, and a player code of conduct--will be announced in due time, Epic said.

Activision Blizzard charges Overwatch League teams substantial fees in the millions of dollars just to create a franchise. There are currently 12 teams in the Overwatch League. Activision Blizzard also makes money by via broadcasting rights; Twitch reportedly paid $90 million for the opportunity to broadcast Overwatch League matches.

In other Fortnite news, Epic announced at E3 2018 this week that the game has reached an astonishing 125 million players in under a year. Additionally, the game is out now on Nintendo Switch--with some frame rate issues.

E3 2018: Fortnite Reaches A Massive New Player Milestone

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 01:44

We have always known that Epic's Fortnite is massively popular, but now the developer has quantified the game's success. In less than a year, the game has reached a staggering 125 million players, the studio said in a blog post. It is not clear how this figure breaks down between the paid Save the World game and Battle Royale, but no doubt Battle Royale is more popular.

The announcement came at E3 2018 this week during the Fortnite Pro-Am that saw big-name streamers paired up with celebrities to play the game. As part of this, Epic also announced more details on the $100 million Fortnite eSports funding that it announced in May.

For the inaugural 2018-2019 season, Epic said the $100 million will support "community organized events, online events, and major organized competitions all over the world, where anyone can participate, and anyone can win."

Qualifiers for what Epic is calling the Fortnite World Cup will begin this fall, with the finals to be held in 2019. The World Cup will focus primarily on Solo and Duos, though Epic said there will be Squad opportunities as well.

In what sounds like shade Epic is throwing at Activision Blizzard, Epic said the Fortnite World Cup is for the players and the players alone. "Qualifications for the Fortnite World Cup will be based on merit. Epic will not be selling teams or franchises, and won't allow third-party leagues to do so either," Epic said.

For comparison, Activision Blizzard charges teams substantial fees in the millions of dollars just to create an Overwatch League team. Activision Blizzard also makes money by selling the Overwatch League rights to networks; Twitch reportedly paid $90 million for Overwatch League broadcasting rights.

With its $100 million investment in Fortnite competitive play, Epic is helping ensure that Fortnite remains popular, not that there was any doubt that it would.

Disney's Dumbo Remake Trailer Is Moving And Magical

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 00:42

Disney's program of remaking its classic animated movies has proved to be a hugely lucrative one to date. The Jungle Book and Beauty and The Beast have earned a combined total of more than $2.2 billion worldwide, and there are a variety of other adaptations on the way. Next up is the live-action remake of Dumbo, and the first trailer has arrived.

Dumbo is directed by Tim Burton, who previously helmed the hugely successful Alice in Wonderland for Disney, as well as classics such as Edward Scissorhands, Sleepy Hollow, and the 1989 Batman. It stars Colin Farrell as a former big top star who finds work with a struggling circus after he returns from war. There he meets the baby elephant Dumbo, who is mocked for his giant ears but is clearly destined for great things. Check it out above.

Dumbo also stars Michael Keaton as villainous entrepreneur Vandemere, Danny DeVito as circus owner Max Medici, and Eva Green as trapeze artist Colette Marchant. The movie doesn't actually arrive for some time unfortunately, with the release date set for March 29, 2019.

In terms of other Disney adaptations, new versions of Mulan, The Lion King, and Aladdin are all in various stages of development. Mulan recently added a number of high-profile Asian actors to the cast, including Gong Li (Miami Vice) and martial arts legends Donnie Yen (Rogue One) and Jet Li (The Expendables), and arrives in 2020. The Lion King will be directed by The Jungle Book's Jon Favreau and is set for July 2019, while Aladdin comes from Snatch and Sherlock Holmes director Guy Richie, and arrives in May of next year.

Conjuring Spin-off The Nun's First Trailer Is Seriously Scary

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 23:54

The huge success of 2013's horror hit The Conjuring led to not just a sequel, but an entire expanded universe of connected scary movies. So far we've had The Conjuring 2 and two films focusing on scary doll Annabelle, and they will soon be joined by The Nun. The movie arrives in September, and a first trailer has been released.

The Nun is a prequel to all the Conjuring universe movies so far and will explore the origins of The Conjuring 2's demonic nun Valek. It's set in 1952 and follows a priest and his assistant as they investigate the suicide of a young woman in a Romanian abbey. Inevitably lots of scary things happen, and if this first look at the movie is anything to go by, it's going to be a terrifying ride. Check it out below.

The Nun is directed by Corin Hardy, who previously helmed the acclaimed 2015 horror movie The Hallow, and it stars Demián Bichir (The Hateful Eight), Taissa Farmiga (American Horror Story), Bonnie Aarons (The Conjuring), and Charlotte Hope (Game of Thrones). Conjuring director James Wan is the movie's co-writer, along with Gary Dauberman, who also wrote Annabelle and Annabelle: Creation. It hits theaters on September 7.

In a recent interview Entertainment Weekly, Wan spoke about how the shared Conjuring universe came about. "When we were starting out, when we made the first Conjuring, we always kind of quietly, jokingly, among ourselves, felt that the world of the Warrens, and all the interesting artifacts they have in their haunted room, could have their own stories and therefore spawn movies," he said.

"We had hopes and aspirations but we never thought in our wildest dreams that we could actually go on and do it. If I could pull off an Avengers of the Conjuring universe, I would love for that to happen. We'll see. It could be fun."

In related news, it was recently reported that what would have been Hardy's next movie, a reboot of the '90s classic The Crow, is no longer happening. The film was weeks away from the start of production, but creative and contractual disagreements between the movie's production company and its distributor led to the departure of both Hardy and star Jason Momoa.

E3 2018: Fortnite On Switch Has Everything You Need Except Smooth Framerate

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 14:52

The battle royale juggernaut Fortnite expanded its reach further by launching on Nintendo Switch soon after it was officially announced during Nintendo's E3 presentation. It's free on the Eshop and has all the features of the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC versions. Fortnite on Switch lives within the same ecosystem as all other versions; as soon as you hop in, Season 4 and the current weekly challenges are live. The battle pass is available, grouping up in parties works the same

Although you can link your Epic account to the Switch version if you've been playing on PC, Xbox One, or mobile to keep working on your progress, PS4 players are left in the dust. Sony is blocking user from linking accounts cross-platform, which also means there's no cross-play between these platforms. This says more about Sony than it does about Nintendo, but it's something long-time PS4 players should know.

Your mileage will vary when playing with Joy-Con; Fortnite is a shooter after all. Weapons that require precise aiming, like sniper rifles, are a bit more difficult to use given the limited range of motion of the Joy-Con analog sticks. Don't expect motion controls to save you since they haven't been implemented. Pro Controller owners wouldn't have to worry about this, of course. Otherwise, all the controls from using a gamepad are sensibly translated to Switch.

One of the more significant differences to note while playing on Nintendo's handheld-console hybrid is that the framerate has taken a hit, both docked and undocked. Certain visual anomalies like texture pop-in are noticeable, but don't really affect gameplay like the lower framerate does. This makes firefights and building intricate structures harder to manage, especially when things get hectic. PC can run an unlimited framerate and PS4 and Xbox One run at a smooth 60 FPS, and jumping between those versions and the Switch might be jarring for some players. By no means does this make Fortnite unplayable on Nintendo's platform; the core gameplay remains in tact even if it's not the most optimal version.

Since Fortnite: Battle Royale is a solely a multiplayer experience, you'll need to be connected to the internet at all times to play. And unfortunately, the co-operative mode called Save The World is not currently available to Switch users.

For a more critical look at this wildly popular game that has had tens of millions of players, be sure to read our official Fortnite: Battle Royale review. We had some idea that Fortnite was coming to Switch even before E3, thanks to Chance The Rapper speaking too soon in a hilarious tweet. A few other members of the GameSpot staff had impressions of Fortnite on Switch and you can watch their discussion.

E3 2018: How Fallout 76 Aims To Stop People From Being Jerks

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 14:07

During Bethesda's E3 2018 press conference, we learned a lot more about what kind of game Fallout 76 is shaping up to be. In addition to seeing a trailer with gameplay details, we also learned that Fallout 76 is an always-online multiplayer game. You can still play solo, but the other characters you encounter in the game are other human players.

This setup opens Fallout 76 to some issues, though, namely how people will behave toward other players. How do you prevent someone from targeting you and trying to ruin your game? We spoke to Bethesda Senior Vice President about the online nature of Fallout 76 and how Bethesda aims to preempt potential issues.

"When you see a person in the world, they're a real person, and now you have to figure out [what role they play]...maybe they're being super helpful, maybe they're wandering the world as a trader and just trading with people, maybe they're being a bad guy and they're part of a raider group," Hines said. "[We allow] for that sort of tension but with systems in place that keep it from being abusive. So you can't be harassed by somebody who just keeps chasing you around the world and keeps killing you over and over again; the game literally doesn't allow that to happen to you."

He continued, "Death isn't supposed to be a super negative thing. You don't lose your progression, you don't lose all your stuff, somebody can't kill you and then take everything in your inventory [and then you have to] start over."

The question remains how PvP will function exactly, but Hines emphasized that it's not a dog-eat-dog world. "Think of PvP more like issuing a challenge to somebody as opposed to just, 'no matter what I want to do to somebody, I can,'" he explained. "The game only lets that go so far before you can basically say, 'I don't want to participate in this challenge anymore.'"

Hines compared PvP in Fallout 76 to fighting a Deathclaw in Fallout 4. If you attempt to kill a Deathclaw and die, when you respawn, you can either decide to try again or move on and do something else. "That should kind of be how it works for any human person," he said. "They can't keep coming after you, just like that Deathclaw wouldn't come running across the map and keep chasing you."

Hines also emphasized that Bethesda plans to continue supporting and tweaking these systems as time goes on. It remains to be seen how they work, or if intrepid players figure out ways to circumvent the rules in place, but the upcoming (but currently undated) beta is a good time to test how they work.

Fallout 76 is set to release on November 14, 2018 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. For more on Fallout 76, see our roundup of all the Bethesda news.

Unlike Dark Souls, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Has No Multiplayer, From Software Confirms At E3 2018

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:59

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is the new game from Dark Souls and Bloodborne developer From Software. Many of the company's previous games--most notably those from the Soulsborne series--have some form of multiplayer gameplay. This usually manifests itself through either invading other players' worlds or by helping strangers beat tough areas of the game. Sekiro, however, will not follow suit.

"This title is designed from the beginning to be a single-player experience," From Software's Yasuhiro Kitao said as part of a roundtable interview attended by GameSpot. "As a part of that, one of the focuses of the game is, instead of having a choice between various classes from the beginning, you must play as a ninja. As a result, [the team] has really been able to focus in on what those mechanics are and make them as deep as possible."

When GameSpot asked if this means there is no multiplayer of any kind in Shadows Die Twice, Kitao was unequivocal in his answer. "Yes. No online components."

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice was revealed during Microsoft's Xbox E3 2018 press conference. It's to be published by Call of Duty and Destiny publisher Activision, and it's coming to PS4, Xbox One, and PC in early 2019. For more on the upcoming action game, check out our Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice gameplay impressions.

E3 2018: Resident Evil 2 Remake Is Familiar But Terrifying In New Ways

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:50

Resident Evil 2's upcoming remake rides a fine line between new and old. When it triggers nostalgic memories with its familiar characters and locales, it instantly makes you uneasy with its new retelling of events from the classic survival-horror game.

My time with the demo began in the main hall of the Racoon City Police Department as Leon S. Kennedy--who's just as strong-willed and naive as we remember. He's no longer the invincible superhero that latter entries transformed him into; he's desperate and vulnerable. These qualities should come as no surprise to fans of the original version, but the remake heavily leans on them in his characterization, making your time spent as the rookie cop all the more tense and dire. And with higher-quality voice performances, Leon's circumstances are made more grounded and believable.

It helps that the Resident Evil 4-style, third-person over-the-shoulder camera provides a far more intimate view than the original's fixed camera angles. The remake faithfully recreates the original RPD's narrow halls and pathways; its floor layout is nearly identical. The third-person perspective plays well with the labyrinthian police department, making exploration feel unsettling and claustrophobic. Gone are the door loading screens, and in its place is a more seamless and hostile environment.

All throughout my plodding trek across the RPD, I rarely felt a sense of safety. An area would be recreated exactly as I remembered it, but then the game would completely mess with my expectations. For example, in the southwest corridor, I expected to fight the infamous Licker, but in its place was the body of an RPD officer with his face sliced in half. New details like this ensured that I was always on my toes--despite having played the original countless times.

The feeling of desperation intensifies when you run into your first zombie. The empowering over-the-shoulder shooting featured in latter games has changed. When you aim, the cardinal markers on your reticle slowly move until they're closed in on the center, allowing you to fire a more precise shot. But when you move, the reticle resets and must take time to close in again. Shots take time to line up; you can't just instantly fire from the hip and expect to hit your target. It's a small change, but it completely alters your sense of control. Every bullet counts when you're cornered by a pack of zombies, forcing you to pick your shots wisely.

There's a deeper focus on exploration in the remake. Scattered throughout the environment are doors to unlock and puzzles to solve. Thanks to the more seamless navigation, the game feels more akin to Metroid. You're constantly investigating new pathways, gaining new items that might help you open up the way to your objective. There's more freedom overall to explore and discover secrets at your own pace and in varying orders--which is a welcome change of pace from the more constricted adventure game-like progression of the original.

I walked away pleasantly surprised from my time with Resident Evil 2. As a massive fan of the original, I had a feeling I’d like it. But after playing it, I can't wait to jump back in. There's something so special about the way it takes advantage of your knowledge of Resident Evil 2, pleasing you with its faithful renditions of well-known locations, while at the same time terrifying you with everything it does differently. This persisted all throughout my experience with the game, and I can't wait to see all the changes it makes once it finally releases early next year.

E3 2018: Here's Why Xbox One Is Getting This New Survival Shooter Before PS4

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:36

The PlayStation 4 does not have any kind of early access system, and this appears to be a pain point for some developers. Back in 2016, Ark developer Studio Wildcard said the lack of an early access-style system on PlayStation 4 was part of the reason why PlayStation gamers had to wait longer to play the title. And now, another developer has spoken out to say the lack of such a program on PS4 was at least a part of the conversation for why it chose to partner with Xbox instead.

The survival game Vigor, the new title from Arma studio Bohemia Interactive announced at E3 this week, is launching on Xbox One's Game Preview program this summer before a full launch in February 2019. Creative director Lukas Haladik told GameSpot that it was "obvious" for Bohemia to partner up with Microsoft.

"We have a very nice partnership with Microsoft," Haladik said. "It was obvious for us to go with them. And also, Sony doesn't have a game preview."

The existing partnership that Haladik referenced is likely about how Bohemia's DayZ is due to launch on Xbox One before PS4 because Xbox One has a game preview program and PS4 doesn't. "We're still excited to have DayZ in the hands of PS4 players, it'll just happen a bit later than the Xbox release," Bohemia said at the time.

Sony has not explained why it doesn't offer an early access program on PS4, but it could come down to the company being uncomfortable with pre-release software on the system. Unfinished games are often buggy and unstable, and that might make Sony uneasy. We've contacted the company in an attempt to get more details on this matter.

Vigor is a third-person survival game set in Norway during an alternate history 1991. It may look like a battle royale game, but Haladik stressed to GameSpot that it is not. Eight to 16 players enter a map to play an "engagement," as Bohemia is calling them. You can find loot all across the map or kill other players to get theirs. Supply drops fall from the sky and the main objective is to escape with the package alive. Once you grab the package you become marked, making it easier for people to find you. Alternatively, you can find one of Vigor's handful of exit points to escape the map, keeping all your gear for the next engagement.

There is no kill feed and the HUD is very minimal. Matches have a 20-minute cap, but they can also end after players get wiped or everyone escapes. Vigor will be available through a paid founders pack this summer, while the game will become free when it launches in 2019.

Another interesting note about Vigor is that it runs on the Unreal Engine as opposed to Bohemia's proprietary tech that powers Arma and DayZ. Additionally, with DayZ still unreleased on console, some are upset that Bohemia is releasing Vigor before that game. Haladik told GameSpot that he's aware of this concern, but he stressed that the game is developed by different Bohemia team and as such the projects are on different schedules.

For more on Vigor, check out the announcement trailer above. We'll have more on Vigor from our interview in the days ahead, so keep checking back for more.

E3 2018: Alan Wake Dev's New Game Is Unbridled Action Driven By Dream Logic

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:27

Remedy's reputation as a developer of great action games with compelling stories has never quite faded; even Quantum Break, despite some complications, had many redeeming qualities that its biggest detractors (like me) couldn't ignore. Chief among them was the combat system, which gave you control over time itself, allowing you to slickly thwart swarms of enemies in unusual and flashy ways. These same qualities are echoed in the announcement trailer for Remedy's next game, Control, but what you won't find in that video is the mind-bending series of events I saw during a private gameplay demo at E3.

I'm looking forward to games like Cyberpunk and Death Stranding as much as most people, but Control has quickly become my most anticipated game at the show. Circling back to combat, Control gives off similar vibes to Quantum Break, but a key difference lies in the sort of powers at your fingertips. The two abilities we saw allowed the main character, Jesse Faden, to grab objects strewn around the environment and hurl them at enemies, or bring them close to create a temporary shield. Performing these moves results in chaos as other objects get caught in the crossfire, making each encounter look messy (in a good way.) An eye-catching flurry of special effects helps complete the chaotic spectacle. These are just two of many powers Jesse will acquire throughout her harrowing journey.

Jesse also wields a gun known as the Director's Pistol, and as you could see in the trailer, it's composed of many small components that can break apart, and we realized in the demo that this was a hint at the gun's ability to change its shape and function. The Director's Pistol, like King Arthur's Excalibur, was described as a weapon that can only be properly wielded by someone worthy of its power. Remedy's devs on location at E3 2018 wouldn't say much more about what it's capable of in the long run; surprises for later, no doubt.

Enemies in Control are--based on what we've seen so far--varying levels of corrupted federal agents, though what exactly has corrupted them in the first place remains one of the game's great mysteries. Some look like typical gun-toting sentries, but the more tainted beings resemble human-like ghouls--pale skinned and erratic, they are far more unpredictable and help sell the strange atmosphere Control's going for. Though all things considered, Control is plenty weird as it is.

Most of the gameplay demo was focused on exploring The Oldest House, which is really just another name for the brutalist headquarters of the Federal Bureau of Control. As Jesse moves from one room to the next, unexpected scenes sharply contrast the harsh angular structure of the building. Whatever has corrupted the agents has also screwed with the compound's fabric of reality. You will stumble into ruined corridors where missing walls give way to a vortex of clouds and geometric shapes that pulsate and shift, for example. It doesn't make sense, and that's the point. Remedy wants you to forget about logic and embrace the dreamlike construction of the bureau. Jesse's powers extend beyond combat. In our demo, which took place roughly halfway through the game, she could also levitate, and it was astonishing to watch the player soar into the aforementioned clouds, through the surrounding black cubes, and emerge in a new section of the building.

Jesse has to earn the ability to levitate by acquiring a particular Object of Power, items that are spread throughout the massive and crazy building. These can be found or earned by taking on sidequests. The one example of a sidequest opportunity we saw was disturbing, and it felt awful to see the player move Jesse along for the sake of keeping the demo rolling. She had come across a man behind glass staring at a refrigerator, and when he noticed Jesse, he cried out for help because the only way to prevent the fridge from "deviating," and presumably doing something awful to him, was to look at it. If he fell asleep or looked away, that would presumably mean the end of him. The threat of deviation was obtuse, but the man's fear and stress was clear despite the fact that he was being threatened by an inanimate object.

The level of tension throughout the demo was matched only by the wonder I felt as I watched a predictable setting twist and reform before my eyes. My imagination ran wild, as did questions resulting from the dreamlike series of events that played out before me. Control is a game meant to inspire wild theories from fans about the cause of the world's corruption and how Jesse fits into the bigger picture. I walked out of the room completely impressed by what I'd seen. It was such a stark contrast to the controlled sheen of Quantum Break, such an untethered display of creative madness, that I can only look forward to diving in headlong when Control releases for PS4, PC, and Xbox One next year.

E3 2018: Bethesda Isn't Planning Any Battle Royale Content, Pete Hines Says

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:05

E3 2018 has seen a few battle royale-related announcements. During EA's press conference, DICE revealed that Battlefield V will have a battle royale mode, and Nintendo revealed Fortnite on Switch without its original Save the World mode. Bethesda, on the other hand, did not mention anything about battle royale modes for any games during its E3 2018 press conference.

Bethesda did announce DLC for last year's Prey that introduces a new multiplayer mode. Called Typhon Hunter, it pits five Mimic players against one human player. In the spirit of new modes coming to existing Bethesda games, we asked Bethesda Global Senior Vice President Pete Hines whether the publisher had any battle royale plans up its sleeve. Short answer: no.

"We definitely have nothing battle royale-related," Hines said. "We tend never to want to follow anybody else into a space; we didn't go chasing after Facebook gaming when that was the big trend. Just because battle royale is popular doesn't mean it's a good fit for us or our studios."

He continued, "If somebody comes up with a thing that's battle royale or battle royale-esque that they think is unique or different or cool, it's probably something we'd consider, but we tend not to go chasing after trends. We want to be pushing ourselves to offer different experiences and do new things."

That means the upcoming Rage 2, which releases Spring 2019, won't be getting a battle royale mode any time soon (if ever). For the full interview, watch the video above, and for more on Bethesda, see our roundup of all the news out of Bethesda's E3 2018 press conference.

E3 2018: Metroid's Ridley Joins Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Character Roster

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 13:05

As if Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's roster of "every character from the series history ever," wasn't enough, Nintendo closed it's E3 2018 presentation with a surprise Smash reveal: long-time Metroid antagonist Ridley is coming to the game as a playable character.

In a moody, cinematic trailer, Ridley appeared from the shadows to attack the intrepid Samus, revealing that the dragon-like beast will be the next fighter to join the expansive roster. The character model based mostly on the character's Other M appearance, but alternate costumes not only show different colors but also the mechanized version of the purple beast.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will include every character ever released for a Smash game, and we'll get the chance to play it at E3 this year. So stay tuned for impressions and in-depth gameplay vidoes showing off the game soon. We know one change it introduces is the ability to pick stages before selecting your character. This way, those who care about catering their characters to the exact level they're playing on don't have any excuse for why they lose.

Smash Bros. Ultimate releases for Switch on December 7. It'll support GameCube controllers through an adapter.

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