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Q-Games on piracy, PixelJunk Dungeon and a mistrust of marketing

Monday, 1 February 2010 05:54 GMT By Patrick Garratt

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Nathan: “Pat! I’m going to Japan!”
Pat: “I’ll ask Dylan Cuthbert if you can pop along to Q’s offices in Kyoto and do an interview.”
Nathan: “Awesome.”

[10 minutes later]

Pat: “It’s all good. He said yes.”
Nathan: “I’m so, like, doing this thing. Hopefully I’ll get to speak to PixelJunk Shooter director Shouichi Tominaga, PixelJunk Monsters and Racers director Rhod Broadbent and recruitment and PR chap Duncan Flett.”
Pat: “That would be very cool. And Dylan, too?”
Nathan: “I have a feeling he won’t be there on the day.”
Pat: “Me too. We didn’t want to speak to him anyway, right?”
Nathan: “Right. I think.”

Hit the link.

Interview by Nathan Grayson.

VG247: How’s PixelJunk Monsters Deluxe been doing on the PSP saleswise? Is piracy still taking some serious wind out of your sales, or are things looking up? Dylan Cuthbert said that PJMD would probably be your last PSP game. Has he changed his mind, or are PSP players still out of luck?

Duncan: Well, we don’t really have access to sales numbers, so we can’t answer that.

OK, how about something a bit more answerable, then? Piracy’s a major issue on any platform that’ll allow it. And Dylan’s made some comments about how much gamers’ stinginess disappoints him. Like, they actually complain about having to spend $10 on a game. Knowing this, what sort of measures has Q-Games taken?

Rhod: Piracy’s a factor when we decide what projects we’re doing next – whether or not that platform is suffering heavily from piracy or not. I know Dylan’s made some comments about this, but we don’t solely base our decisions around piracy. If we wanted to make a PSP game again, then that’s what we’d do. I think the piracy thing is a concern, of course, but it’s not the be all and end all.

Shouichi Tominaga (translated by Duncan): If there’s a game that we think of, and the PSP’s the best platform for it, then that’s what we have to go ahead on. As an opinion of the platforms that are out at the moment, I feel that there is a risk, on some platforms, of piracy. And from a development point of view, that’s something we have to consider. It’s not the case that we don’t want to make games for Platform X and Platform Y. We want to make games! But it’s something we have to consider.

Lately – especially after this year’s TGS – there’s been a lot of doom and gloom surrounding the Japanese gaming industry. I know a few high-profile Japanese developers, especially, have felt like the country’s efforts have been a bit lacking as of late. As a Japanese developer, what’s your take on this? Are people just blowing things out of proportion, or is Japan in trouble?

Shouichi Tominaga: If you’re looking at graphical realism, then I agree that overseas [developers] – on the non-Japanese side – are probably further ahead than here in Japan. The reason being, perhaps, that in the West, there’s more efficient or effective sharing of information between companies, peer groups, and things like that. In Japan, companies are essentially islands. They don’t share techniques or processes. People kind of work in a huddle. That limits how things could evolve on this side.
My concern is that, if this trend continues, you might see a gap develop in game design – which wouldn’t be for the benefit of Japan.

You’ve been putting a big focus on community involvement lately, for instance with the voting process for PixelJunk Shooter’s name. Are we going to see more of that in the future – perhaps with the next PixelJunk game?

Shouichi Tominaga: That would be something that would be interesting for us going forward, yeah.

Rhod: We enjoy talking with our fans. We don’t have any plans at the moment, but absolutely from here on out, we’ll be talking more and more.

How’s PixelJunk Dungeon coming along? I know it was announced at GDC a while back, but now it’s sort of gone underground, for lack of a better pun. Are Dungeon and 1-5 one in the same? If not, can we expect to see both of them in 2010?

[Story - Ed]

Rhod: [laughs] I see what you did there.

We have a lot of ideas going on at once and during GDC 2008 when we announced Dungeons, we were all really excited about that. And we’re still really excited about what we announced then and what we showed. But then Shooter came along and there was a huge rush of, “Yeah! Shooter’s what we’re going to do now!” It just happens to be whatever takes our fancy at the time. So which direction we go in next is not public knowledge, I’m afraid.

Duncan: What PixelJunk Dungeons was and whether or not it comes out as PixelJunk Dungeons – the ideas we were talking about will be present in all the games we make from now on.

Shouichi Tominaga: The more we make these PixelJunk games, the more we learn – the bigger our world gets. So, in that way, you never really know what’s coming next.

All aboard the Segue Express, then, because that feeds right into my next question: The coherence of your designs — visually and aurally, especially — stand out when compared to the rest of the gaming industry. And you were talking about how you’re able to switch back and forth between design ideas at the drop of a hat. I imagine that’d be a tall order for many larger developers. How does your small team size aid your development process?

Shouichi Tominaga: You hit the nail on the head. It’s small teams and flexibility. They’re able to give each game its individual flavor.

In general, do you think that small teams like that are better for game development as a whole? What are the pros and cons of small scale and large scale development, as you see them?

Shouichi Tominaga: Basically, your team size is defined by the scope of the game that you’re making. For instance, we’ve got some feedback saying that Shooter doesn’t have enough volume. Fair comment, but we could’ve developed the game with a bigger team – had more areas where the game could be played. But then perhaps the cohesiveness of the game in terms of game design would’ve been lost.

For example, Shooter’s a puzzle/shooter game where fluid’s a main part of the game, so whenever we set something up in the game – such as a puzzle or a mechanic or something – it has to be checked hundreds of times to make sure it works the way we desire it. And that’s a lot of work.

Rhod: I mean, yeah, there are some things we obviously can’t do. We can’t make Halo. But we can make something just as fun as Halo, we hope. That’s what we try and do.

That sounds like a team slogan. “We’re not Halo, but we’re just as fun!”

[Everyone laughs]

So, your recent games remind me a lot of old-school Nintendo games, in that they have something of a skeletal story working in the background, while gameplay’s in the spotlight. Do you think games are simply more suited to this style of story-telling, or would you ever consider creating a more elaborate story-based game?

Shouichi Tominaga: Without good game design, you don’t have a game. You can have all the story you want, but the gameplay is the heart of the game.

Rhod: I think that’s how most people at Q feel. I’m very much gameplay. I don’t care about story at all. I think what we did with Shooter’s story was really fun, but in general, I’d be fine without stories in games.

But gaming’s huge now. It’s a broad church, and there are people out there who want to make interactive stories and put quick time events into every kind of game – and there are a whole lot of people who enjoy it. I’m not going to say that they’re wrong for doing it.

*cough*Heavy Rain*cough*

Rhod: [laughs] But yeah, there are enough people out there to buy enough stuff that you can have that. But we are definitely about gameplay. The key is gameplay.

Sony’s indie support has been quite good. How about Microsoft’s indie section? I know Q has been steering clear of the Xbox 360, but now that Microsoft appears to be spotlighting smaller titles a bit more, would you reconsider?

Rhod: The Xbox has its indie games section and I’ve played loads of them. I especially love the Arkedo games. I hope they keep making more and more of them. And it seems like it’s really nice and easy-to-access, but I’m not sure if it’s right for us to say which platform is pushing [smaller games] the best. We’re certainly happy with what we’ve achieved on the PlayStation Network.

[Story - Ed]

Shouichi Tominaga: I’m not allergic to the Xbox 360 [laughs], but I haven’t played many of its games. I have nothing personal against the console. So basically, as a company, if there’s a game we want to make, and the console’s the best fit for it and the audience is out there, then we’ll make that game. We’re not, like, beholden to [a single console].

On a similar note, how about motion control tech like Microsoft’s Project Natal or Sony’s ArcSphereGem wand? Are you interested in developing for either of those?

[Story - Ed]

Shouichi Tominaga: In my head, there are a bunch of ideas [laughs]. I like new technologies, so it’s of interest to me. We’ve got nothing to announce at this point, though.

Duncan: I mean, we tried Natal during a TGS demonstration. It was interesting – playing Burnout and stuff.

Rhod: We don’t currently have anything for motion controls. We’re just waiting for an idea to run with, that’s all.

So, you’ve done racing, tower defense, platforming, shooters, etc. Genres that – before your team added your, er, unique flavor to them — seemed a bit played out. Would you ever consider revitalizing other “played out” genres like RPGs, beat-‘em-ups, fighting games, etc?

Rhod: To be clear, that’s not what we set out to do. We just wanted to make really good games. Like with Racers, one of the guys here wanted to make a racing game. They put together a prototype in, like, half-a-day and it was just one of those crazy-fun times. And, like, with tower defense. At that time, when we started [developing Monsters], we didn’t think tower defense was tapped out.

And that’s more, I guess, what I was getting at. When Q makes a game, it’s unique. It’s not a “game in the style of Popular Game X.” It’s its own animal. That was the aim of my question: Would you consider applying your gameplay-over-story approach to other genres? Breathing new life into those genres, I suppose, would (hopefully) be a byproduct of your game.

Shouichi Tominaga: The essence of what makes a PixelJunk game lies in new concepts, or revisited concepts from a new perspective. Things like full HD. For instance, I was director on PixelJunk Eden, and when we started that game, the first prototype was a rhythm-based game. And we were playing it, and we were like, “Something doesn’t feel right. Something doesn’t feel right.” It didn’t feel like a PixelJunk game. And that’s when it went off to become a platformer. There’s a point in time when we’re making [a game] when we say, “OK, now it feels like a PixelJunk game.” That point in time changes every time we make a new game.

I learn a lot about the game and myself when I’m making something, and that’s enjoyable for me.

Rhod: That’s a luxury that small games companies have – that when the game starts talking to you and saying, “I’m not this,” we can easily just change it. We can say, “OK, we’re gonna throw that out and do this [instead].” Whereas if you’ve already invested millions in a project, then suddenly, you’ve got people sitting around and saying, “But it isn’t fun,” then you can’t change direction. Or it takes a very comfortable marketing team to do that. Here, we can play with the game and iterate on the game until we find what really makes us laugh. And that point for Racers and Monsters, and even for Shooter – more recently – is really memorable. That day happens, and everyone’s sitting around the machine, and they’re laughing and having fun. And from then on, it’s smooth sailing.

Q-Games’ goals and general philosophies seem to be far removed from much of the mainstream gaming industry these days. What games – aside from your own, obviously – would you say are on the right track in terms of where you’d like to see videogames go in the next few years?

Duncan: So, to put it another way, what games are out now that we didn’t make, that we wish we could have made?

Exactly.

Rhod: Well, I personally would’ve loved to have made Arkedo’s Jump. It’s an indie game on the Xbox 360. I love it. We don’t think like that often, though. I mean, if there’s a game we enjoy playing, then we’re really happy that it was made. But I certainly never had a conversation where we sat down going, “Oh, I wish we’d done this,” or, “This is like one of our games.” I think we’re just happy to be a part of the big tapestry of gaming, for other people to do their own thing, and for us to just be a part of that.

Personally speaking, I really like gaming as it is right now. There are lots of things I regret with regards to marketing in many ways, but I really like that there are so many different types of games out there – so many different people making different things. Now that there’s Nintendo going their own special way, and marketing Mario Kart to everyone. But you’ve also still got people like us. There’s people out there making games just to serve themselves, basically, and there’s people making games for everyone, and then there’s everything in between. And that’s great, because we’re grownups now, and gaming is growing up.

Shouichi Tominaga: We shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that games are entertainment, and it’s about getting people to feel like, “Oh, I’m glad I played that. That was fun!”

I want to eliminate frustration from games. Frustration should not be part of a gaming experience.

I was going to move into my next question, but Rhod said something interesting. So, what’s your beef with marketing as it functions today?

[Story - Ed]

Rhod: [My comment] was nothing personal about any company that I’ve interacted with. It’s just that, what I see in the world of gaming is that it’s very narrowly focused. And it’s marketing to the same people that are gonna buy games over and over again. And there are very few companies that are pushing beyond those limits – trying to actually get outside the people who read NeoGAF. I mean, you can do it sometimes; Modern Warfare does it very well, and Halo does it very well. They’re huge games with a lot of money behind them. But still, I think a similar type of person is buying those games.

It’s a hard job marketing videogames, so I’m not meaning to criticize. But I wish there was more money spent on games that I think are cool little things. I think that’s how every gamer feels. I want the cool things – the little things – to be huge and successful. And the big things that are really easy to sell to people, I don’t care for them.

And I guess that’s kind of where the whole “fanboy” mentality comes from. That desire to allow people to play your favorite games. Or force them to do so, at any rate.

Rhod: That’s an interesting way of looking at it. And yeah, one of my favorite games is Rhythm Heaven. If I could make everyone in the world play one game, it’d be Rhythm Heaven – the GBA version. And I would force them to like it. If you like that game, we can be friends. That never came out in the West, and that really upsets me.

But then the DS version did come out in the West, and I was extremely happy about that.

Shouichi Tominaga: It’s a mistake for developers in general to trust marketing.

Marketing defines the boundaries for what’s “good,” and then tells the developer to make that. So don’t trust marketing too much with that side of it.

Rhod: But also, as a designer of games, you need to be aware that what you’re doing at the time is part of the marketing. And so many people, I think, just make a game and say, “OK, it’s over to them to sell it.” But, if you look at people who are really successful with their games, the feeling – how the players are going to feel when they’re playing it and whether or not it’s an appealing environment – is all on the developers. It’s not on the marketing. I’m an optimist and an idealist, and I’d like to believe that if you make the perfect game, then the market will be there for it. And then the marketing team will go with it – the more it sells, the more the marketing team will market it. That’s usually what happens. But if it’s not making money in the first place, it’s hard to get the marketing stamp on it. That’s the tricky part.

Finally, what advice would you give to other small developers who want a Q-Games-sized slice of the gaming industry pie?

Shouichi Tominaga: As a small company, we find that it’s really all down to the quality of your product. You don’t have any marketing push or advertising push, so you have to cherish creativity and just polish your product.

Rhod: And get good people.

Shouichi Tominaga: And the studio itself needs to have its own unique flavor. And that needs to come through in everything it does. I wonder if we’d have got the team we have if we’d been situated in Nagoya or somewhere else. Kyoto is a great place.

Rhod: Also, Dylan’s history helps us a great deal, and Dylan’s knowledge in general helps us a great deal. And the same of most of the team, actually. Having people like Tomi who are so focused helps. The business side of it, I have no idea about. But we have good business minds and good creative minds and good technology minds. And a great location [laughs]. We’re lucky in many respects.

Shouichi Tominaga: Small developers need to examine themselves and think hard about what they do well, and how they can do that better in some way, and then make that happen.

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5 Comments

  1. Syrok

    Good interview :)

    #1 5 years ago
  2. Galactic_Barret

    Great read, especially the NeoGaf marketing quip.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Audio Radar

    The best developer for PSN/DSiWare loves the best developer for XBL Community Games. I like this!

    You should definitely find a way to work together, I would love to see an Arkedo/Q-Games series of games on XBLA.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Dean

    Excellent interview, chaps! :D

    #4 5 years ago
  5. Bleak Harvest

    Brilliant stuff — Q-Games love grows.

    #5 5 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    Think you can take down a jet plane with a grenade throw? This guy can. In fact, he can do it twice. This is in a variation on the player-created deathmatch “Stunters Versus Snipers” which seem to be all the rage in GTA Online at the moment. One team has a sniper rifle (and grenades) […]

  • Metal Gear Solid 5: Mother Base turns pink in the morning sun

    The Phantom Pain looks nice even when Kojima just takes a quick pic with his phone. Look at that beauty. We get nice reflection in pink at the first gray of dawn. pic.twitter.com/aERTBoZT9z — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) March 2, 2015 The game doesn’t have a release date yet, which makes us a bit nervous for it […]

  • Dying Light: Underpant Gnomes and 9 other secrets you missed

    Dying Light still has legs – maybe because it’s crammed full of secret things to discover. Ten of those have been highlighted by TerraMantis’ latest YouTube video, including reference to the Underpant Gnomes, guitar lessons, farting zombies and well, we don’t want to spoil it for you. Even if you think you’ve seen everything in […]

  • Resident Evil: Revelations 2 Raid Mode dance gestures are deadly

    Why blind ‘em with science when you could kill ‘em with dance moves? revelations raid When I say Resident Evil: Revelations 2‘s Raid Mode dance gestures are deadly, I’m not being figurative. If you finish the first chapter of Revelations 2 you can unlock Gina for use in Raid Mode. All characters can use gestures […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition mod enables male Blackwall romance, terrific joke

    “Male Inquisitors can now scale the wall,” says a clever Redditor. A new Dragon Age: Inquisition mod removes Blackwall’s romantic restrictions, allowing male Inquisitors to chat up the fuzzy-faced warrior. Blackwall doesn’t have any race preferences, so you’re good to go there. Dragon Age: Inquisition romance mods are pretty common by now, and to be […]

  • Destiny: it is possible to solo the Weekly Heroic

    Destiny players willing to faff about with their system clock can solo the Weekly Nightfall if they prefer. The Weekly Heroic is one of Destiny‘s toughest challenges. Responding to player feedback Bungie implemented matchmaking for the Weekly Heroic, but there are players who genuinely prefer to go it alone. There’s now no legitimate way to […]

  • Clayfighter remaster on the way, says Interplay

    A Clayfighter remake is inbound, apparently. Interplay has announced a Clayfighter remaster, combining the content of all past games into one package. Features include: Characters such as Bad Mr. Frosty, Blue Suede Goo, Earthworm Jim, Hoppy, Boogerman, Tiny – and more with over 20 characters total Over 20 familiar environments from the series to duke […]

  • The quickest way to climb in Dying Light

    Dying Light players! Are you sick of picking your way carefully up the sides of tall towers? Have I got a trick for you. The parkour system in Dying Light is okay, but climbing anywhere especially high can be a bit tedious. Enter Jesse Lester, who took a look at the tools available and worked […]

  • Bungie “always” looking at Exotic changes for Destiny updates

    Destiny developer Bungie won’t stop tinkering with Exotic weapons. In Destiny, Exotic weapons are supposed to be the best of the best – and to feel unique. Guns like Ice Breaker and Gjallahorn definitely hit the mark there (although less so when everyone has one), but unfortunately, there are a few that just don’t strike […]

  • Is Uncharted 4′s first trailer a tribute to Crash Bandicoot?

    Uncharted 4′s first proper trailer bears some remarkable similarities to the opening moments of a much earlier Naughty Dog game. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End has more in common with Crash Bandicoot than you might think. It’s Naughty Dog’s first game on a new console, yes – but if you compare Uncharted 4′s E3 2014 […]

  • Sonic console games will continue, says Iizuka

    Sonic Team leader Takashi Iizuka has said there are no plans to stop making Sonic games. Sonic hasn’t retired from the ranks just yet. “Please rest assured, I personally have no plans to stop making Sonic games for home consoles,” Iizuka told 4Gamer [Japanese]. The comment arose after the site asked if Sonic would become […]

  • Stealth Inc. 2 coming to PSN, apparently

    Stealth Inc. 2: A Game of Clones will soon be available on PlayStation platforms, if a trophy list is to be believed. Stealth Inc. 2 initially launched as a Wii U exclusive, disappointing fans of Curve Studios’ tough action game. We’ve heard nothing to contradict this, but Exophase, a generally reliable source, has dug up […]

  • Runescape developer has an “undisclosed MMO” in the works

    Runescape developer Jagex is working on something new. According to Jagex’s careers page, the developer has a new, unannounced game in the works. Its advertisement for a lead programmer makes explicit mention of an “undisclosed MMO”. The ad mentions the new title is in “the preliminary stages of redefining the cross platform MMORPG genre” and […]

  • Destiny PvP rewards system to be addressed

    Destiny developer Bungie has said it will change the way Crucible rewards work. Destiny players are always complaining about the perfidy of RNGesus, but there’s one area where it particularly hurts: the Crucible. PvP players often receive nothing at all for excellent performances, and sometimes Guardians receive the best drops merely for logging in as […]

  • Azure Striker Gunvolt 2 in the works for 3DS

    Azure Striker Gunvolt is getting a sequel. Azure Striker Gunvolt developer Inti Creates has confirmed that the sidescroller has been popular enough to warrant a second instalment. The sequel will also be released on 3DS, the team said on Facebook. Very little information is available at present, unfortunately. “As time goes on we will have […]

  • Life is Strange Episode 2 not delayed, says developer

    Life is Strange developer Dontnod Entertainment has said the second episode is on track for release this month. I guess it would know. Life is Strange Episode 2 has been expected on March 13, but late last week Square Enix told Destructoid it had been delayed. Dontnod has since denied this report, describing it as […]

  • First SteamVR game reveal is Job Simulator

    Job Simulator is the first game to be announced specifically for SteamVR, Valve’s virtual reality tech. Shoot Many Robots and Aaaaa! For the Awesome! developer Owlchemy Labs is the first team to put its hand up and say it’s worked with SteamVR. In a blog post, the studio unveiled Job Simulator, which will be playable […]

  • HTC, Valve partner for Vive VR headset

    The first SteamVR announce is a headset a manufactured by HTC, the Taiwanese mobile company revealed over the weekend. Valve told us last week it planned to unveil virtual reality hardware at GDC, calling it “SteamVR” at the time. Now HTC has pre-empted Valve by revealing Vive, a headset developed thanks to a collaboration between […]

  • Watch the Evolve Chappie Challenge tomorrow on Twitch

    Sony Pictures Entertainment, 2K and Turtle Rock Studios have announced a tournament being hosted by ESL, which will see Evolve players take on newest movie robot, Chappie. The ESL has teamed up with Twitch for the live 4 on 1 competitive event, and you can watch as it all unfolds tomorrow, March 1 at 3pm […]

  • If you’re attending PAX East, stop and have a look at Necropolis

    We haven’t heard much on Harebrained Schemes’ latest since it was announced in November, but today, the team has seen fit to release some interesting gifs of its a new project, Necropolis. Necropolis is a third-person action rogue-like with procedurally generated which can be “re-rolled mid-playthrough” and is headed to Linux, Mac and PC sometime […]

  • Dragon’s Dogma Online really is lovely, as these screenshots prove

    More Dragon’s Dogma Online screenshots have been released, and this batch is just as lovely as the last gallery we posted. Since this game will likely never leave Japan, the images are a bit of a salt rub for fans of the IP, but hopefully another entry in the series will be released at some […]

  • Action-RPG Death’s Gambit has a classic-Castlevania feel to it

    How would you like to become an agent of Death and rid the world of immortals? Then Death’s Gambit may just be the game for you. Announced by LA-based studio White Rabbit, the action-RPG with platforming elements tasks players with fighting gigantic enemies on an alien, medieval planet. Players will also encounter formidable beasts, knights, […]

  • Modder adds offline co-op into Resident Evil: Revelations 2

    PC users lamenting the lack of local, offline co-op in Resident Evil: Revelations 2 will be pleased to know a modder has remedied the omission. The mod, created by FluffyQuack, adds offline co-op mode to Episode 1 but the only caveat is players will need to use gamepads instead of mouse and keyboard (via Gamespot). […]

  • Number of Steam accounts with Dota 2 installed hits over 42 million

    Dota 2 has seen its installation rate jump 85% year-over-year, resulting in the MOBA now having close to 43 million installations worldwide. The figures were published via a report from video game research and consulting firm EEDAR, which studied Steam accounts daily to better understand the service’s player behavior and title performance. According to statistics […]

  • Nintendo issuing Eon Ticket codes for Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire

    Nintendo is handing out an Eon Ticket to Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire owners which will allow them to visit the Southern Island. Once a player arrives, depending on which version of the game they own, Pokemon Latios and Latias are able to be caught. The Eon Ticket was originally issued via StreetPass, but […]

  • Here’s a couple The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt screenshots to brighten your day

    Two images for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt have surfaced on the game’s Facebook page. Grabbed by Gamekyo, the images show Gerlat and Vesemir chatting with a fellow, and the other shows Geralt riding up to some ruins where some people have been hanged. CD Projekt Red will make an appearance at PAX East next […]

  • Hyrule Warriors Boss Pack DLC contains unlockable character – potential spoilers

    While you already know the next DLC for Hyrule Warriors will allow you to play as the gigantic beast Ganon, there’s a rather humorous unlockable character contained in it as well. Potential spoilers follow below. When the DLC arrived in Japan February 26, YouTuber moccos-tan IsedelicaAs posted a video of the unlockable character, which is […]

  • Star Trek Online players gather on Vulcan to pay respects to Leonard Nimoy

    Star Trek Online players paid tribute to Leonard Nimoy yesterday by gathering around a fountain on Vulcan, the home planet of Spock in the Star Trek series. According to a post by barnacle999 on reddit, when he logged into the MMO “there were around 20 full instances and several partial,” culminating in around 1000 players […]

  • Dark Souls 2: Scholar of the First Sin gameplay video shows invasion of The Forlorn

    A new Dark Souls 2: Scholar of the First Sin gameplay video has been released, and provides the viewer with a look at the NPC invader system. Watch below as The Forlorn hunts down the player through the game with “with deadly skill and tenacity.” He even teams up with other enemies, making your fight […]

  • Visual upgrade for Wasteland 2, improved modding tools in the works

    A visual upgrade and improved mod tools are in the works for Wasteland 2, according to a blog post from inXile Entertainment. The upgrades will come about as the game’s codebase is migrated from Unity 4.5 to Unity 5. “A major benefit of moving to Unity 5 is that 5 will include many of the […]

  • Battlefield Hardline brings “Hollywood crime drama” to single-player campaign

    In the fifth developer diary for Battlefield Hardline, the team discusses how it’s bringing “Hollywood crime drama” to the shooter’s single-player campaign. The video was released a couple of days ago, so apologies are in order if this has been posted already, but I promise I searched the site and never found it. Visceral Games […]

  • Masquerada: Songs and Shadows is a pause for tactics isometric RPG coming in 2016

    Masquerada: Songs and Shadows is a 2.5D isometric RPG, built in the vein of Baldur’s Gate and Dragon Age in the works at Withing Hour Studios. The game allows the player to pause combat to plan party tactics. “Set in the Venetian-inspired fantasy city of Ombre where rare masks are the key to casting magic, […]

  • Underworld Ascendant surpasses Kickstarter goal

    Underworld Ascendant which was launched on Kickstarter earlier this month, has met its  $600,000 funding goal. With six days left 10,786 backers pledged $610,541 In light of being funded, the team has also switched up the stretch goals as bit, as you can see in the image below. The studio, OtherSide Entertainment, is fronted by Paul Neurath, […]

  • Latest Evolve patch fixes progress and save game data loss on Xbox One

    A patch for Evolve has been released on Xbox One which fixes lost progress and save game data users had reported. The patch also fixes an issue with shadows and flashlight, makes incremental improvements to matchmaking, invites, and rejoining, and there were progressions balance changes. “The issue with lost progress and saved games was mostly […]

  • Online servers for Ridge Racer Unbounded shut down in Europe

    Online functionality for Ridge Racer Unbounded is no longer available, Namco Bandai Europe has announced. Solo mode and the track editor are still playable, minus the sharing options. Ridge Racer Unbounded was released on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in March 2013. Thanks, MCV.

  • OlliOlli will be a cross-buy title on 3DS and Wii U

    Curve Digital has announced OlliOlli will be a cross-buy title when it releases on 3DS and Wii U. The Roll7 title will be the first third-party title to offer the functionality on the systems. OllliOlli will be released on the eShop March 5 The game launches on Nintendo’s eShop on March 5th, followed by Xbox […]

  • Darkbeast electrifies latest Bloodborne video

    The latest Bloodborne video shows off another monster in the game. This one is Darkbeast and he’s full of electricity. The video is the last of IGN’s month-long coverage of the title.

  • Future Assassin’s Creed games will have greater focus on modern timeline

    Ubisoft plans to focus more on modern timelines in future Assassin’s Creed games, the company suggested during its latest community livestream. During the Twitch stream, one of the lead writers for the Assassin’s Creed series, Darby McDevitt, said the modern timeline for Brotherhood’s town of Monteriggioni could inspire future development. “That only came about because […]

  • Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 is coming to Xbox One next month

    Halfbrick has announced Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 for Xbox One will release next month. The mobile title made its way onto Xbox 360 garnering 1 million downloads as of March 2012. It has a new multiplayer mode for up to four players with Battle and Party modes along with a new progression system. An announcement […]

  • New GTA 5 PC screens – shit the bed!

    Rockstar has pumped out 15 new screens for the PC version of Grand Theft Auto 5. Don’t touch them, because they’re electric. And if you touch them, you’ll get shocked. The PC version of GTA 5 has been delayed until April 14, which both sucks and blows. BUT! There’s a new trailer coming between now […]

  • Sony Japan accidentally erases 20th Anniversary PS4 contest entries

    Sony Japan has accidentally erased all information obtained from PlayStation owners who entered to win a 20th Anniversary PlayStation 4. Those who purchased PlayStation 3, PS4, Vita or Vita TV between December 4 – January 15 were handed a calendar with a code which entered them into the contest. Somehow, all data collected from the […]

  • Hearthstone datamine suggests Blackrock Mountain expansion on the way

    Hearthstone’s next update may be based on World of Warcraft’s Molten Core raid, if datamined information posted on Hearthpwn is spot-on. According to files mined from the latest patch, three new cosmetic card backs are on the way, one of which is called Molten Core. The data suggests that pre-ordering the Blackrock Mountain expansion will […]

  • Using Battlefield Hardline single-player gadgets increases your metagame rewards

    Gadgets contained in Battlefield Hardline’s campaign mode have been detailed, and each provides the player with various ways in which to solve crimes. According to design director Scott Warner, one way to “diffuse” a conflict when confronted with criminal activity is to flash your badge and ordering the criminal to freeze. Putting your gun on […]

  • Mortal Kombat X video is all about story mode, new characters

    After promising a new Mortal Kombat X reveal “soon”, NetherRealm Studios has made good on said promise by releasing the story trailer. The video shows parts of the story mode featuring Mileena, which takes place 25 years after the events of 2011′s Mortal Kombat. Outworld has become a larger threat and new fighters joining the […]

  • Destiny’s shotgun and pulse rifle buffs mean it’s time to rethink your load-out

    Destiny’s most-ignored weapons got major boosts this week. It’s time to start thinking about how to work them into your set-up. Even if you’re used to using scout rifles and sniper rifles as a general loud-out (neither class was touched by 1.1.1), the buffs to pulse rifles and shotguns should make you rethink your contextual […]

  • Battlefield Bad Company 2: five years later, what did it do so right?

    It’s been five years since the release of Battlefield Bad Company 2. What did the much-loved entry in the franchise do for the Battlefield series? Westie’s played Battlefield Bad Company 2 for over 1,260 hours on PS3 and PC. That’s dedication. In his latest video he discusses the stand out moments from a FPS classic, […]

  • War is hell in this Zombie Army Trilogy gameplay trailer

    Here’s five minutes of headshots, shambling zombies and an undead Hitler from Rebellion’s upcoming Zombie Army Trilogy. The Sniper Elite spin-off arrives on PS4, PC and Xbox One March 6 and includes three games (obviously) and a new Horde mode.

  • Titan Souls releases on PS4, Vita, PC on April 14

    Ace indie giant-slayer Titan Souls will be released on PS4, Vita and PC on April 14. Publisher Devolver confirmed the date to Eurogamer. Those of us in Europe will have to wait until a day later for release. Titan Souls is a tough-as-nails indie game where you have one life to slay a giant enemy. […]

  • Destiny weekly update: lowdown on Inferno Crucible, Vault Transfer improvements

    Destiny’s weekly update has made some pretty significant changes – let Arekkz Gaming take you through them. Bungie has revealed the first release date for the new Inferno Crucible mode, and made it a lot easier to access your vault. You should subscribe to Arekkz Gaming. It will improve your life.

  • Destiny: Xur location and inventory Feb 27, 28

    It’s Xursday again – what treats does he have for you this week? He’s in the North Tower, to the right of the Stranger’s room. Let’s take a look at the latest weapons and gear from your favourite Destiny trader. No Backup Plans [Titan Gauntlets] – 13SC ATS/8 Arachnid [Hunter Helmet] – 13SC Heart of […]

  • Battlefield Hardline will be stable on PC at launch, Visceral assures

    PC format is “by far the best gaming platform around,” says Hardline producer. “We’re doing what we can to take advantage of people’s different system with the graphics, framerate, controls, etc. We’re not just porting it over.” Battlefield Hardline developer Visceral is reassuring players that there will not be a repeat of the disastrous Battlefield […]

  • Win Pneuma: Breath of Life for Xbox One

    We have 10 download codes for new indie puzzler Pneuma: Breath of Life for Xbox One to give away. The be in with a chance of winning a code, just enter your details below and we’ll pull the winners from the hat on Monday March 2nd, after 2pm GMT. Pneuma: Breath of Life is a […]

  • Life is Strange Episode 2 delayed

    Life is Strange Episode 2 won’t make its expected release date. The first Life is Strange episode released on January 30, and we had expected the second to follow on March 13. Square Enix has since confirmed to Destructoid that the next chapter won’t make its release date. There’s been no word of the new […]

  • Mortal Kombat X: which character will be revealed tomorrow?

    Mortal Kombat X director Ed Boon is teasing a new character reveal. During today’s Mortal Kombat X livestream, NetherRealm said that a new character would be revealed “very soon”. Boon followed up with this teasing tweet suggesting the reveal will occur tomorrow: Very soon? As in tomorrow? :/ — Ed Boon (@noobde) February 26, 2015 […]

  • Halo played by Twitch is an exercise in great patience

    TwitchPlaysHalo is ridiculous. Halo: Combat Evolved is the latest game to be sucked into the “TwitchPlays” phenomenon, and the results are somewhat painful to spectate. If you’re not familiar with the setup, which debuted with TwitchPlaysPokemon, the game accepts commands from the channels’ chat stream. Although it doesn’t have the strategic RPG elements of Pokemon, […]