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Holiday Retrospective: What happened in June 2011

Wednesday, 28 December 2011 12:57 GMT By Brenna Hillier

We’re half way there, and you know what that means? Revisiting E3 2011; a surprisingly crowded summer release schedule; and the continuing saga of Hackers vs The World.

New in June 2011

inFamous 2

Red Faction: Armageddon

Child of Eden

Alice: Madness Returns

Duke Nukem Forever

Ocarina of Time 3DS

Dungeon Siege III

F.3.A.R.

Shadows of the Damned

Cars 2

Trenched

SSFIV AE

E3 2011
Although it’s one of the biggest shows of the year, 2011′s E3 brought few of the mega-ton reveals and announces we’ve come to expect. Nevertheless, there was plenty of excitement, and most of the major players had strong shows.

Sony’s press conference was a little spoiled by pre-show Vita leaks, but we finally got our first launch and pricing details as well as western hardware previews.

Sony focused again on Move and 3D, with CCP’s Eve Online tie-in shooter Dust 514 and BioShock: Infinite both confirmed to use the motion control system; this last one allowed Sony to do one of its famous celebrity retractions. Ken Levine also confirmed a BioShock game would be coming to Vita.

The Vita’s reasonable-sounding pricing was well-received – although its choice of mobile partner wasn’t – and when we grabbed Andrew House for a chat about the company’s future, everyone was quite cheerful. Quite apart from first and third-party streams, Sony’s E3 presence drew a huge crowd – 500,000 checked out the company’s display inside virtual world, Home.

Microsoft’s was equally leaky, and its own event was spoiled by a pre-emptive website update and domain name registrations.

Although Halo 4 and Halo: Combat evolved – Anniversary Edition were not surprises, they naturally went down well. The hardcore was a little dubious about the Kinect focus – Peter Molyneux spent hours with press trying to convince them that Fable: The Journey isn’t on rails; footage of StarWars Kinect in action was greeted with what is politely described as “doubt”. Xbox UK boss Stephen McGill swore the company would never leave the core behind, pointing to mass Effect 3′s optional Kinect features as an example of the the tech’s appeal.

One offering about which there was very little debate was Microsoft’s presentation of the first Tomb Raider footage; Crystal Dynamics’ reboot went on to be named game of the show by numerous outlets, and Nathan was suitably impressed by what he saw.

Square Enix also brought the first Hitman: Absolution trailer as part of its western-heavy line-up, although Final Fantasy XIII-2 was on show, and the company has expressed regret at the weakness of its Japanese catalog.

Tomb Raider E3 demo.

Konami, whose 2010 show was notoriously awkward, made its major announces and reveals during a pre-E3 show. PlayStation 3 HD collections for Metal Gear Solid; Zone of the Enders; and Silent Hill were announced, complete with a feature called “transfarring”, which allows included PSP titles to be played on either console with seamless save transfers. No details of Kojima Productions’ new games were given, disappointing those with outside bets on a Metal Gear Solid 5 reveal.

Ubisoft secured itself a warm and fuzzy spot in pat’s heart by showing of Far Cry 3 during its own event, and an interview with the developer only increased our adoration. The publisher’s other big reveal, the less-than-serious Brothers in Arms: Furious 4, proved too great a departure from the franchise’s solemn past for hardcore fans – but we’ll see if that changes when marketing ramps up.

Activision Blizzard was largely a no-show, sending a small number of games, but making no presentations or announces. Rival EA was out in force, with Battlefield 3 headlining. The game’s Battlelog network was revealed, along with EA Sports Football Club. We also got out first information on Insomniac’s new IP, Overstrike.

Wii U
But it was Nintendo who arguably took E3 2011′s star billing – not because it universally pleased, but because it got people talking. After months of rumours, we finally learned something of the company’s new hardware: a suitably ridiculous name, and a suitably bold technological leap.

The system’s media debut was plagued by confusion – the presentation didn’t make it clear whether we were looking at an entirely new console or just an add-on for the Wii, as Nintendo elected not to show the prototype hardware. Nintendo’s stock fell to its lowest point in five years as a result, with president Satoru Iwata later admitting he could have done better.

A number of multi-platform third party titles were shown in a sizzle reel, although none was actual Wii U footage, and system exclusives – like a new Assassin’s Creed – were announced. Pat wasn’t very impressed.

Duke Nukem Forever launch trailer.

Releases
2011 brought an unusually strong summer line up, with quite a few core titles debuting, including InFamous 2; Red Faction: Armageddon; Operation Flashpoint: Red River; Alice: Madness Returns; Dungeon Siege III; and Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3DS proved nostalgia is still a winner with hot reviews and demand-driven street date breaks. Shadows of the Damned, Grasshopper Manufacture’s latest, also reviewed strongly – although failed to catch on at retail.

Critics were perhaps less interested in F.3.A.R., but Double Fine’s Trenched – which was blocked from European release by a copyright claim – went down well, as did Kinect shooter Child of Eden.

But let’s not ignore that elephant in the room; after more than a decade, Duke Nukem Forever released, resurrected by Gearbox after 3D Realms shuttered.

The game sold, but the reviews were dire, and as critics vented their bile on an easy target, one PR manager vented his frustration in public, suggesting he would blacklist those who gave poor reviews.

Duke Nukem Forever’s launch had generated so much public and media interest that the story was siezed upon and immediately blew up; Eurogamer claimed blacklisting is “standard practice” for publisher 2K, and the PR firm struggled to assuage its own poor publicity, greatly embarrassed. We argued that blacklisting is part of our business.

As for Gearbox, it didn’t give two hoots about the poor reviews. Although he said some were a little zealous, Randy Pitchford said Duke’s sales speak for themselves – sometimes we want junk food, knowing full well how bad it is for us.

In the NPD group’s June report, L.A. Noire took top spot again, with Duke Nukem Forever in second; Infamous 2 in third; and Ocarina of Time 3DS in sixth.

Otherwise, the US industry saw slumps across the board, although the NPD Group again emphasised that its reports lack digital data.

Far Cry 3 E3 demo.

PSNgate Part Three
An astounding three months on from the initial attack, the PlayStation Network hack was still generating a significant number of headlines. Some of them were even positive, as Sony made its Welcome Back package available to users early in the month.

Others? Not so much. Experts said the network still wasn’t adequately protected, and that we might never know what – if anything – the hackers had made off with. Sony was accused of having laid off its security team prior to the attack, too.

Sony’s executives weighed in, with Kaz Hirai calling out hacking as a threat to the fabric of society, while Jack Tretton described the whole shebang as a wake up call, and Sir Howard Stringer said Sony had been attacked for daring to protect its IP. Andrew House said the company was now in a state of vigilance against attack, but at least one Anonymous cell decided to call off its activities and complained of “butthurt” PSN members.

Hackety hack, don’t come back
Meanwhile, hackers embroiled in Sony’s anti-hacking lawsuits suffered wildly different fates. One expected to serve jail time, lacking the funds to defend himself or meet fines, while George “GeoHot” Hotz, the poster boy of device hacking whose cause had been cited in defence of attacks on Sony, has secured a job at Facebook.

Nintendo of America was hacked, and Nintendo Europe closed down a handful of services to stave off phishing attacks. Codemasters and Epic both suffered attacks on their web presences, and Bethesda announced the compromise of user data during its own besiegement.

BioWare and Sega soon met similar fates, and even Battlefield Heroes was hit, apparently merely for the lulz.

At this point we gave up on 2011 yielding anything but hacking, forever and ever. Just when we heaved a sigh of relief at Lulzsec signing off, Anonymous re-entered the fray.

Hatched, Matched and Dispatched
For the second month in a row, THQ got its hatchet out. Kaos, the team behind the under-performing Homefront, got the axe, along with Digital Warrington, the UK-based team which had produced a number of spin-offs for major releases. The media felt the edge a bit, too, with Future US and IGN both making a number of staff cuts.

Child of Eden launch trailer.

But on the positive side, a number of suddenly unemployed Blackrock staffers launched Roundcube.

Just Cause developer Avalanche opened a new studio in New York in addition to its Swedish base, and a handful of Rockstar veterans started a new studio.

Sega founded a new UK team with at least one Vita project in the works, and a pair of long-serving Lionhead staffers left to pursue their own development dreams.

Reports outed EA Sports’ plans to open a new studio housing a new team in Texas, and peripheral manufacturer Mad Catz finally leapt into development, after years of flirtation with publishing and distribution.

In the executive realm, Sony shuffled its higher-ups. SCE Europe head Andrew House was promoted to SCE International boss, with former incumbent Kaz Hirai suddenly in a brand new role as head of Sony’s consumer electronics division, uniting the PlayStation division with the rest of the company’s products. The importance of this game of musical chairs to Sony’s long term strategy should not be underestimated.

Vagrant Story designer and senior Final Fantasy staffer Yasumi Matsuno left Square Enix, and in Australia, a number of uncredited L.A. Noire staff came forward to describe Team Bondi’s crunch conditions, which sounded even worse than usual.

Finally, we heard an interesting rumour that someone was going to buy PopCap for the astronomical sum of $1 billion. We scoffed, and then we scoffed some more – but luckily, we’d also just purchased a number of nacho hats.

Wii U tech demo.

Marketing and PR
Gameloft announced that Order & Chaos, its iOS, subscription-based MMORPG, had pulled $1 million in its first three weeks – pretty astounding money for an untried marriage of business model and platform.

THQ made good on a promise to reward players of the Red Faction: Armageddon demo was downloaded often enough, by unlocking a new weapon in the game’s campaign. Mr Toots is a unicorn with deadly laser farts.

Battlefield 3′s E3 2011 reveal won rave write-ups from press and an incredible amount of buzz; Activision wasn’t impressed, with Bobby Kotick saying the game didn’t stand a chance against Modern Warfare 3, and casting doubt on the success of the game’s console ports.

EA boss John Riccitiello responded with the executive equivalent of “u mad?”, and the publisher thre some fightin’ words around about the plucky spirit of the underdog.

Valve, oblivious to shooter wars, released a new episode in its popular Team Fortress 2 videos – Meet the Medic. In other popular marketing, BioWare decided to include the female version of Commander Shepard on Mass Effect 3′s collector’s edition packaging, acknowledging her existence at long last.

Less winningly, CCP launched its Incarna expansion, which included a number of virtual vanity items far more expensive than their real-world equivalents. EVE Online’s enormous and vastly complicated economic system was thrown into disarray, and protests by disgusted players were estimated to cost the company $1 million.

Nintendo hardened a few hearts by once again refusing to commit to localising the trio of JRPGs much requested by Wii fans.

True or false?
Namco Bandai surprised the hell out of everyone by announcing a new Ridge Racer game, Unbounded, which is not only not set to accompany a console launch, but destined for PC. THQ surprised approximately minus five people by announcing Darksiders II.

Shadows of the Damned launch trailer.

Unusually for an European publisher, CD Projekt managed to grab some pre-E3 spotlight from its summer conference; an Xbox 360 release for The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings was announced (and leaked) at last. THQ was announced as the game’s western publisher, much to Namco Bandai’s surprise; a lawsuit later resulted. We got hold of Tomasz Gop and heard all about the port, the company’s first console effort.

An interesting rumour started up around E3 that Metal Gear Rising – notable for its absence – had been handed off to another developer – although the studio so-named was quick to deny it. That was a fib.

Recruiting at Sucker Punch outed the company’s next project as another PlayStation 3 exclusive; a few months on, it’s clear this little hint foreshadowed a major announcement.

Digital Frontier
It was an exciting month for digital distribution fans -especially those who’d rushed out to buy Nintendo’s best ever connected console, the 3DS, only to find it shipped with an eShop. Three months on, a firmware update delivered the virtual shopfront, although it still lacked support for demos and DLC.

EA launched its own distribution platform, Origin, replacing the existing online store and download manager and claiming an exclusive on Star Wars: The Old Republic. Interestingly, the publisher was perfectly happy to continue delivering its PC games through established services like Direct2Drive and Impulse, but a number of titles disappeared from Steam for unspecified reasons – although EA did stress it wasn’t happy about it.

On Steam’s side, the platform was opened to free-to-play games, with Valve admitting it had a couple of its own in the works. The import of this would slowly dawn over the next few months, but free-to-play was already a huge talking point, as World of Warcraft essentially went freemium up to 20 levels.

Alice: madness returns launch trailer.

Capcom was in the doghouse this month, as news broke that save files for Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D can not be erased. Conspiracy theorists instantly pointed to a crackdown on used game sales, and although Capcom denied it, some retailers responded by refusing trade-ins.

Bungie revealed its Aerospace initiative – not a new game, as speculation had it, but a publishing arm, bringing smaller indies to market.

Ball’s in your court
Although many gamers have forgotten about it already, June was an important month for the US games industry on the legal and political front: The US Supreme Court ruled against a Californian law which sought to ban violent video game sales to minors, judging it unconstitutional.

In Australia, press got wind of Dead or Alive: Dimension’s Nordic territory ban, and started a delightful circus which saw the game pulled from store shelves – although it was later returned with a higher age rating. One of the most entertaining aspects of this kerfuffle was the national news service’s use of a ridiculous stolen image; apparently the ABC thinks Photoshop-enabled, pterodactyl-headed, PS2-era bikini girls is a representative screenshot of a 3DS game.

One of the industry’s most protracted copyright cases was put to bed – again; probably not forever – with a UK court ruling in favour of Future over Tim Langdell’s claim to ownership of the trademark Edge. Zynga also initiated a copyright suit, taking South American social games publisher Vostu to court.

In the ongoing battle between Activision and former Infinty Ward leaders jason West and Vince Zampella, a judge greenlit the pair’s suit, setting them on the road to trial.

And on the homefront, we bid sad farewell to Keza MacDonald, a prolific and justly celebrated freelancer whose services we were proud to engage, as she took off to become IGN UK’s games editor.

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2 Comments

  1. Dark

    Thanks Brenna.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. ManuOtaku

    For me the best games of the month were Shadown of the damned and Alice Madness Returns, i like those games a lot especially shadown, in my eyes is what resident evil 5 should be in the first place, sad to see those two games were pretty much ended overlooked by gamers, in the download front treanch i mean iron brigadge was really a great tittle, double fine for me is a great developer that yet havent made a game i dont like or someone can call a bad game.

    On the software front i cannot wait to see more news about the wii U, i hope this coming monday we have more info.

    #2 3 years ago

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    Crazy though this may seem, it’s possible that Destiny shipped according to plan. History points to community as a crucial component, far from the contingency that many now suspect. Paul Davies spoke to Bungie for clarity. “The community always engineers the best solutions for bringing players together. While Matchmaking is a great resource for introducing […]

  • Bloodborne works with suspend/resume, but only offline

    PlayStation 4′s newly-added suspend/resume feature works with Bloodborne as you’d expect, but only while offline. PlayStation 4 received the long-awaited suspend/resume feature today as part of firmware 2.50, and people are starting to test it out with various games. Bloodborne does work with the feature, but only if you play offline. Playing online is arguably […]

  • This is what Crossy Road looks like in first-person

    Crossy Road is fun and addictive. But in first-person, it’s mostly frightening. YouTube user Andy Front Films likes Crossy Road so much he decided to show off what it would look like in first-person. If crossing roads quickly and watching around for cars and trains, all of this as the camera chases you felt intense […]

  • Take a small behind-the-scenes peek at Mass Effect 4

    BioWare cinematic director Ken Thain has given us a very slim look behind the scenes at some motion capture work from the upcoming Mass Effect game. The upcoming Mass Effect game, whether it ends up being called Mass Effect 4 or not, will most definitely incorporate some form of motion capture work. How do we […]

  • Borderlands: The Handsome Collection – 8GB day one patch on PS4, 16GB on Xbox One

    Day one patches for Borderlands: The Handsome Collection are pretty hefty. Both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection require players to download lots of gigabytes to make the experience as smooth as possible. The PlayStation 4 version has an 8.31GB day one patch. The Xbox One version however has […]

  • Get a PlayStation 4 with Bloodborne and The Last of Us for $435

    If you’ve been waiting for the perfect game to get to buy a PlayStation 4, there’s no better time than the present. Amazon is offering a good PlayStation 4 bundle at the moment. For $434.99, you get a PlayStation 4 console, The Last of Us, and Bloodborne. The Last of Us is of course the […]

  • Upcoming Battlefield Hardline patch to nerf the K10, buff battle rifles

    Battlefield Hardline’s first patch will focus on weapon balance and a few changes have been proposed. Battlefield Hardline lead multiplayer designer Thaddeus Sasser posted a few of the balance changes that the team is considering for the next patch. K10: reduce bullet damage to 33 Saiga and PTR: reduce recoil to bring more in line […]

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and a new Resident Evil game coming this year, according to research firm

    According to digital games analyst SuperData, a new Resident Evil game is due this fall and that this year’s Call of Duty is Black Ops 3. In its latest report on digital console games, research and analytics firm SuperData revealed that a new Resident Evil is coming this fall. “We anticipate this month’s downturn to […]

  • Bloodborne: you can add gestures to your messages

    As players get deeper into Bloodborne, they keep uncovering so many of its little new additions, including this one. Bloodborne, like all of the Souls games before it, allows players to leave messages for other players. These messages could be used to point players towards impending doom, treasure, or just be sarcastic and witty. What […]

  • PlayStation 4 firmware update 2.50 is now live

    PlayStation 4 firmware update version 2.50 has started rolling out. Reports are coming in saying that Yukimura, PlayStation 4′s firmware 2.50 has been made available to download. The update is clocking in at just 245mb, so get downloading. 2.50 brings with it many new additions, including the suspend/resume feature, backup and restore, accessibility options and […]

  • Harley Quinn DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight is a prequel

    Batman: Arkham Knight’s Harley Quinn pre-order DLC is set before the events of the main game, according to Amazon’s description. Today we learned a few details about the pre-order DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight, namely the Harley Quinn one. According to the description on Amazon, the DLC takes place in the lead-up to the events […]

  • Bloodborne Vicar Amelia summon mystery solved

    Bloodborne players unable to summon near Vicar Amelia: here’s your solution. Bloodborne’s secrets are unfolding by the hour as clever players piece together From Software’s cunning design. Yesterday we reported problems summoning in the Cathedral Ward, before the Vicar Amelia boss fight. It turns out this isn’t a bug – or if it is, it’s […]

  • Steven Spielberg will direct film adaption of Ready Player One

    Steven Spielberg will direct the film adaption of the sci-fi, virtual world, video game themed novel Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. Warner Bros. bought the rights to the film in June 2010 and hired screenwriter Zak Penn to rewrite the previous draft written by Eric Eason, according to Deadline. The book takes place in […]

  • Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets shouldn’t forget about the custom audio

    Here’s a friendly reminder for Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets: be sure to download the Headset Companion App from the PlayStation store if you haven’t already. As previously reported, the game supports a custom Bloodborne audio mode which can be uploaded. It contains custom audio created by developers specifically tuned to enhance the audio. This […]

  • EA explains why FIFA Ultimate Team transfer prices are now platform specific

    EA has posted a blog entry explaining its FIFA Ultimate Team transfer market price ranges which now include platform-specific pricing in order to best the coin sellers. EA said it has implemented the changes to FUT over the last several weeks because it should be “fair and fun for every player,” ultimately coming to the […]

  • Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness now available

    In case you forgot, Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness was released today. It is available on Mac, PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. The third episode releases on iOS devices and Android tomorrow, March 26. The Sword in the Darkness finds Asher Forrester heading to Mereen […]

  • Bloodborne players are already documenting their crazy antics

    Bloodborne has been available for almost two days now in North America, and already players are posting interesting clips and character customization choices for the game. Below are interesting takes on creating a character and videos of a frustrating death and another full of blood coming from a very painful place – monster or not. […]

  • FIFA Ultimate Team celebrates sixth year in existence with giveaways

    FIFA Ultimate Team is celebrating its sixth year in existence with special events running from today until March 29. According to EA, every FUT fan will be handed one free pack every day, and those who play at least one match in the FUT Birthday Cup will have a chance to win rare “tradable In-Forms” […]

  • Halo Online is a F2P PC game in development exclusively for Russia – video

    Halo Online is a free-to-play game which will launch this spring in Russia, and is in development with Saber Interactive. According the reveal event attended by IGN Russia, the game was designed to run well on lower-end PCs and runs on a modified Halo 3 engine. The game is set on a secret UNSC space […]

  • SteamWorld Dig Xbox One release expected in late May

    SteamWorld Dig is coming to Xbox One, developer Image & Form has announced. A firm release date hasn’t been announced, but the studio expects the title to arrive on the system in late May. “We’re preparing quite an elaborate Easter egg for the Xbox One version – a gaming thing that we really wanted to […]

  • SMITE celebrating first anniversary with a sale on skins, Ultimate God Pack

    Hi-Rez Studios is celebrating the first anniversary of SMITE with a sale. From today through Friday, March 27, the Ultimate God Pack, which includes all current and future Gods, will run you $19.99. Alll individual pre-launch skins are 50% off, and all Gem Packs will award bonus gems. In addition, from March 27-29, all SMITE […]

  • Borderlands 2 has sold around 12 million copies, says Gearbox

    Speaking with Microsoft’s Major Nelson in his podcast, Gearbox Software boss Randy Pitchford stated Borderlands 2 has sold somewhere around the 12 million mark. As of August 2014, it was announced by Take-Two in its financial report the 2012 game had sold-in 10 million units. Pitchford noted in the podcast he learned of the figures […]

  • Broken Age releasing on PS4 and Vita same day as Act 2 on PC

    Double Fine Productions has announced it will release Broken Age on the PlayStation Store next month. Act 2 will also be released on PC. The full Broken Age adventure will release on PlayStation 4 and Vita on April 28 in North America and April 29 in Europe. It features cross-buy and cross-save. Broken Age Act […]

  • Star Citizen earned another $1 million within two weeks – total hits $76 million

    Star Citizen continues its funding streak with backers pumping another $1 million into the game’s development in the last two weeks. The total earned for the space sim has now reached $76 million ($76,015,532 to be exact) with 851,395 backers contributing to the staggering figure. Star Citizen’s latest update was version 1.1 which included two […]

  • Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline top Media Create charts

    Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline were the big ticket debuts during the March 16-2 period in Japan, with each game claiming the top three slots on the Media Create charts, respectively. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD moved 92,094 on PlayStation 4, while Resident Evil Revelations 2 moved 73,373 units on […]

  • You can now learn English or Spanish on Xbox One with the Rosetta App

    Want to learn English or Spanish? Rosetta Stone has an App for that on Xbox One. According to the language teaching firm, Rosetta Stone’s Discover Languages, the new application teaches English and Spanish by way of immersive simulation. Users will virtually travel to learn vocabulary and grammar “necessary for real-world interactions.” Here’s how it works: […]

  • PayDay 2 and PayDay: The Heist have sold over 9 million units combined

    The PayDay franchise is a lucrative IP for Starbreeze and Overkill, as both games combined have sold over 9 million copies as of November 2014. The company has also sold over 8 million paid DLC packages since PayDay 2 was released in 2013 (via NeoGAF). In its Q2 half year report issued in February, net […]

  • Nintendo wants to “surprise” customers with NX, not expand upon existing hardware

    Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has firm wants to “surprise” players with its new NX system. Speaking in an interview with Nikkei, translated by Kotaku, Iwata wouldn’t go into details on the new system, but stated expanding on a current gaming system would be “dull.” “In the past few years, the idea of what [encompasses] a […]

  • Kojima Station show suspended

    In another episode in the the ongoing kerfuffle between Hideo Kojima and Konami, the publisher has suspended the Kojima Station web show. Recent tweets from the newly created Japanese Metal Gear Solid account confirm that Kojima Station will not be broadcast tomorrow, but would not provide a date for the next episode. The Tweets were […]

  • Watch Battle Royale for free this weekend on Xbox Live

    Square Enix is celebrating the launch of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD by offering Xbox Live members in the UK a free rental of Battle Royale. Starting Saturday, March 28 and through Sunday, March 29, Xbox Live members in the UK will be able to rent Battle Royale through the Xbox Video Store, for free. The […]

  • Bloodborne journal, part 1: managing anxiety on the path to the Cleric Beast

    Bloodborne is both like and unlike the Souls games. Brenna descends into Yharnam with reluctance and trepidation. Need help succeeding in Bloodborne? You need our Bloodborne walkthrough and boss guide. Bloodborne isn’t Demon’s Souls or Dark Souls. Let’s get that out of the way right off. I enjoyed both Dark Souls games, but it was […]

  • PS Store Easter sale discounts MGS: Ground Zeroes, Far Cry 4, more

    The Easter Sale is live on the EU PS Store, with Metal Gear Solid 5: Ground Zeroes for less than £10, FIFA 15 Deluxe Edition for £30 and other savings. Some of the PlayStation 3, PS4 and Vita discounts are valid through April 8, other through April 15. PlayStation Plus members can also take an […]

  • Bloodborne video: how to unlock the first shortcut in Old Yharnam

    Here’s a video for Bloodborne players showing a quick way to unlock the first shortcut in Old Yharnam. It also provides a look at things you may have missed in Central Yharnam and The Sewers, courtesy of VaatiVidya. Don’t forget, we have guides posted for the game with more updates coming soon. Bloodborne released in […]

  • Bloodborne issue prevents summons at Vicar Amelia fight

    A Bloodborne bug has prevented players calling on help to take on one of the nasty early bosses. Bloodborne bosses are significantly easier to take down in co-op. Unfortunately, at least one of them is proving difficult to find help for – and not just because not many players have obtained the Small Resonant Bell […]

  • Mass Effect 3 on sale on EU PSN, but not free

    Mass Effect 3 is discounted on the European PSN, but it’s not free. Update 2: The option to add to cart now lets you choose between the free trial or full version. The full version is on sale for £6.49 or £5.84 for PlayStation Plus members. The free trial is of course is still available, […]

  • Elite: Dangerous Race to Elite winners announced, one player makes £10,000

    The winners of Elite: Dangerous’ Race To Elite competition have been announced, with one player receiving the grand prize of £10,000. Back when Elite: Dangerous launched, developer Frontier announced a competition that would award players to first reach Elite rank in trading, exploration, or combat, a prize of £1,000 each. The grand prize – £10,000 […]

  • GTA 5 Online Heists guide: How to make the most money with Special Bonuses and Elite Challenges

    You’re not hitting heists for the good of your health. Here’s how to max cash rewards. Money. GTA Online players love it. Greenbacks are the core of the entire experience, allowing you to buy the best weapons, vehicles and stupid haircuts. Heists, as promised, gives more opportunities than ever to earn serious cash, but once […]

  • PlayStation 4 firmware update 2.50 coming tomorrow

    PlayStation 4 firmware 2.50, codenamed Yukimura, is due for release tomorrow, March 26. Firmware update 2.50 for PlayStation 4 will be launching tomorrow, March 26, Sony has announced. Codenamed Yukimura, the system update is promised to bring suspend/resume feature, trophy sync improvements, accessibility options, and much more. 2.50 has been in beta testing a while […]

  • GTA 5 Online Heists guide: adversary modes, daily objectives, free roam challenges and more

    Heists aren’t the only addition in GTA Online’s latest DLC – there’s a lot of content that can earn you big RP and cash payouts. GTA 5 Online Heists guide: adversary modes, daily objectives, free roam challenges While heists are the talking point and big payoff after more than a year of waiting, there’s a […]

  • Battlefield Hardline: what’s the best Police sniper rifle?

    What’s the best bolt-action, Police sniper rifle for the Professional class in Battlefield Hardline? Let us help you answer that question. As you’re probably aware, Battlefield Hardline weapons are class specific and faction specific. This makes deciding on a good weapon and loadout much harder than it was in Battlefield 4. Which is where Westie […]

  • Evolve 1.3 patch nerfs Wraith, adjusts Kraken

    Evolve is receiving a new patch that aims to put an end to the Wraith’s dominance. Evolve developer Turtle Rock outlined a few of the changes coming in patch 1.3. The patch brings balance changes to the monsters – mainly the Wraith – as well as other various changes to Hunters’ tools based on player […]

  • Bloodborne: watch the opening 40 minutes

    The opening minutes of Bloodborne really do set the stage for what’s to come. They’ll also help you decide if this game is for you. Arekkz Gaming has captured the first 40 minutes of Bloodborne. Complete with the opening cutscene, and the first few obstacles you’ll face. The video is commentary free, so wear headphones […]

  • YouTube will relaunch livestreaming service with focus on eSports and gaming – report

    According to industry sources, Google is preparing to relaunch YouTube’s livestreaming service with a focus on eSports and gaming. According to anonymous sources speaking to TheDailyDot, Google is planning to bring back YouTube’s livestreaming service. The company is said to have started recruiting around 50 engineers with experience in the field, “a pretty big statement […]

  • I think I’m too old for Final Fantasy 15

    Final Fantasy 15 was nine years in the making – and counting. Are we the same people we were in 2006? Final Fantasy 15: Episode Duscae A demo available for PS4 and Xbox One. Offers a couple of hours of gameplay. More if you jump over the borders. Bundled with Final Fantasy 15 Type-0 and […]

  • New multiplayer mode for Splatoon announced

    Nintendo has sent over three screenshots for Splatoon along with information on the Wii U another of the title’s multiplayer modes. Called Ranked Battle, it keeps track of each player’s online ranking. Splat Zones is one of the additional ways to play online in this mode. It differs from Turf War, which is the main […]

  • 2015 WoW Arena World Championship has a $250,000 prize pool

    Blizzard has announced the WoW Arena World Championship will culminate at BlizzCon 2015. World of Warcraft 3v3 Arena teams from around the globe will compete for spot at the 2015 WoW Arena World Championship and for a share in the $250,000 prize pool. Online qualifiers will be held for North America, Southeast Asia, Australia, New […]

  • The Crew two-hour demo now available in US, tomorrow in the UK

    Ubisoft has announced a free trial of its driving MMO The Crew will be available tomorrow, March 25 in the UK. It’s live today in North America. For current players, the Vintage Car Pack and Vintage Live Update, including a new PvP mode, are now available. The Vintage Car Pack included the Chevrolet Corvette C2 […]