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New Super Mario Bros. U: same princess, another castle

Tuesday, 27 November 2012 09:26 GMT By Dave Cook

New Super Mario Bros. U launches alongside Wii U across Europe from November 30th. VG247′s Dave Cook has been jumping his way through it to see if it’s worth a punt.

“As the game takes place across Super Mario World’s Dinosaur Land, it doesn’t take long for the wave of SNES-era nostalgia to wash over you. Seeing a line of scurrying Monty Moles bearing down on your position, or hearing the odd sting of Koji Kondo’s original score peeking through the new arrangement is enough to make hearts melt.”

Mario has become far too good at his job. No, I don’t mean plumbing, because how often do we actually see the portly plumber with his fist down a stagnant toilet? Even though it’s been 27 years since we first saw the Mario Bros. hopping around on the NES, they’re still showing most rival studios how platforming should be done.

When you’re already at the top of your game, where else can you go? After all, if Nintendo tried to dramatically shake up Mario’s core 2D exploits in a significant manner, then you could bet that many gamers would cry foul. Such experimentation seems to be what spin-offs like Paper Mario are for.

No, the best way for Nintendo to take Mario forward in his Wii U debut is to look back to the past and redefine what came before. Specifically, New Super Mario Bros. U is – in many ways – Super Mario World wearing HD skin, delivering a slew of familiar gameplay mechanics, locales and enemies that retro fans will appreciate.

Yet there is no sea change here, no Super Mario 64 moments of awe, or the revelatory design of Super Mario Galaxy. What you get is another solid platforming adventure across eight worlds in constant pursuit of Princess Peach. It’s a bankable format that you can rely on, and Nintendo knows it.

As the game takes place across Super Mario World’s Dinosaur Land, it doesn’t take long for the wave of SNES-era nostalgia to wash over you. Seeing a line of scurrying Monty Moles bearing down on your position, or hearing the odd sting of Koji Kondo’s original score peeking through the new arrangement is enough to make hearts melt.

Mounting Yoshi causes the drum lines to ramp up just like it did in 1992, the Koopalings -Bowser’s bothersome offspring – are also back to terrorise players at the end of each world, and shifty wizard Kamek pops up every so often to gum up our hero’s quest.

This is indeed a celebration of all things Super Mario World, although its rigid eight-world structure feels restrictive when compared to the branching paths and secret levels of its SNES predecessor.

Bonus Toad huts and warp pipe shortcuts break up the straight path a little, but this is a decidedly old-school approach to progression, with all of the forest, desert, ice, water and cloud world staples thrown in just to be safe.

One major setback of the old ways is that you still can’t perform a hard save anywhere on the world map. You can do a one-time only quick-save if you need to dash off out of the house, but hard saves require you to re-complete a mid or end-level castle. That’s just plain frustrating.

“Yoshi is also a powerful asset, as he can still gobble up enemies, hover while jumping and tread over some spiked foes, although he always pisses off at the end of each stage, which feels restrictive and out of sync with Super Mario World.”

While Nintendo has largely looked to Super Mario World for level inspiration, there are gameplay nods and musical riffs that span the series’ entire legacy, making stages something of a mash-up of ideas.

Only those with hearts of stone will refuse to be drawn in by the fun, and deny all memory of their misspent youth sat in front of the SNES. Personally, I loved living in the past while playing but still, even I can’t overlook the fact that much of the content here isn’t exactly new, it’s just delivered in a different way.

It’s clear to see that a Goomba will always be a Goomba, a Koopa Trooper likewise, and that there is only so much to be done with the source material at hand. What does impress however, is that almost every level within each of the game’s eight worlds delivers a unique hook.

One minute you could be scaling a giant stone fortress full of spinning cogs, then the next you may find yourself in an icy canyon being set upon by a gang of sliding penguins. There is a wide range of themes and mechanics at play, carefully sectioned so that every level on the world map offers something that feels fresh without breaking the mould.

New and returning power-ups also add a layer of fun into the mix, and are essential to collecting all three giant coins hidden in every level. New to the series is the Super Acorn, which dresses up characters in a flying squirrel suit. You can use it to glide a short distance, or boost up into the sky using the GamePad’s right trigger.

It’s an excellent power to use when falling to your death, or when trying to reach floating platforms or collectibles. Combine this with previous New Super Mario Bros. power-ups such as the shrinking mushroom and ice flower, and you have one of the most expanded skill-sets in the series’ 2D history.

“As is Nintendo’s nature now, New Super Mario Bros. U has been designed to cater players of all skill levels, and as such is rarely challenging. You can quite easily hold in excess of 50 lives if you know what you’re doing, making the gameplay feel like it’s set on some kind of hypnotic cruise control.”

Yoshi is also a powerful asset, as he can still gobble up enemies, hover while jumping and tread over some spiked foes, although he always pisses off at the end of each stage, which feels restrictive and out of sync with Super Mario World. Yoshi was a core mechanic in that game, but feels more like a side attraction here.

However, Yoshi babies can be found loitering around the world map, and are perhaps more useful than their grown-up equivalent. Simply walk up to one and it will follow you into the next stage.

From there you could theoretically hold on to one until the end of your current world if you wanted to, but doing so requires a great deal of patience and skill. Drop one in a level and it will eventually respawn on the world map after a while. Keep it safe however, and it can prove invaluable.

Pink Yoshi can inflate like a balloon, while blue Yoshi can blow bubbles that ensnare enemies and turn them into coins. The golden breed only appears within dark stages and can emit a powerful light that reveals hazards and collectibles. They’re all useful and slightly different, but again, they aren’t revolutionary.

As is Nintendo’s nature now, New Super Mario Bros. U has been designed to cater players of all skill levels, and as such is rarely challenging. You can quite easily hold in excess of 50 lives if you know what you’re doing, making the gameplay feel like it’s set on some kind of hypnotic cruise control.

Super Guide also returns, which gives you the option of seeing a tricky level completed by Luigi, essentially showing you how it should done. If you still can’t face it, you can opt to have the level complete itself, and while some some might applaud this option as a way of helping young kids or elderly players unfortunate enough to be born with two right thumbs, I simply can’t condone it personally.

It’s a cop-out if ever I saw one and in a game that isn’t exactly the pinnacle of difficulty to begin with, it feels like a coddling step too far. But that’s just me, I was born in a decade where games gave you one life and no continues, so it’s possible I’m just being a stereotypical Scottish grump.

Through all of this – the comforting familiar mechanics and design, the charming music and cute animations – there is a real sense that Nintendo has this formula so perfectly nailed that it doesn’t need to try too hard in order to create something special. It feels effortless, yet it’s clear that a lot of love has been poured into every level.

“It’s not quite a sequel to Nintendo’s SNES masterpiece, but it does enough to tickle your nostalgia bone for the duration while trying its hardest to shake up what you already know. However, that seismic shift is likely a task for Mario’s next 3D outing, whatever that may be.”

The HD visuals sing on the screen, helping each painfully detailed backdrop and character animation leap off the screen. It even looks superb on the Wii U GamePad, should you wish to be lazy and play from your bed on a Sunday morning like I did once.

In a weird way, the Wii U could be considered a powerhouse handheld, if it didn’t need the base console to function. It’s not of course, but the option of playing in different rooms is welcome, even if it guzzles batteries like two Game Gears taped together with the volume and brightness turned up to max.

For device-hungry fans you can even get four WiiMotes and your GamePad synced up to play co-op mode over a game of Boost Rush, which sees four on-screen players scrambling to survive a continually scrolling level while the GamePad operator creates platforms to help or hinder them. There are even single-player time attack and coin challenges in there too.

I’m usually more hyper and excited when talking about a game as polished and well-crafted as New Super Mario Bros. U – you’ve probably seen what I mean on these very pages before – but I honestly didn’t expect any less from Nintendo on this one, and chances are you already had presumptions about it too. If you did they’re probably correct.

So dependable has the brand become that you can hedge your bets after seeing some screens or a trailer. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy the game – far from it in fact – because as I mentioned earlier, it’s pitched at Super Mario World fans.

It’s not quite a sequel to Nintendo’s SNES masterpiece, but it does enough to tickle your nostalgia bone for the duration while trying its hardest to shake up what you already know. However, that seismic shift is likely a task for Mario’s next 3D outing, whatever that may be.

For now you can rest assured that New Super Mario Bros. U is a solid launch title, and a worthy companion to your shiny new Wii U console. What’s a Nintendo console without Mario games after all?

Disclosure:

  • To assist in writing this review ahead of the Wii U launch, Nintendo sent Dave a Premium Wii U console with New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land games bundled, as well as a Pro Controller. No review event or additional merchandise was offered or accepted.

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18 Comments

  1. richiefrank

    “To assist in writing this review ahead of the Wii U launch, Nintendo sent Dave a Premium Wii U console with New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land games bundled, as well as a Pro Controller. No review event or additional merchandise was offered or accepted.”

    Glad to see everyones forgotten about Doritosgate

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Dave Cook

    @2 The console’s not out here yet. What did you want me to do, make my own Wii U?

    It’s a necessary tool of the job. Would you expect a car salesmen to buy all of the cars himself, or a builder to buy his own bulldozer or crane?

    No of course not.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. monkeygourmet

    @2

    You could of just duct taped 2 Wii’s together as everybody keeps suggesting! ;)

    Game sounds nice, will be one only list for sure.

    Off topic, but do you know how the Zombie U servers are going to work.

    Have we got pure European servers? If not will there be lots of spoiler messages already in the game as it launched in US a week ago?

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Patrick Garratt

    I don’t think the EU servers are up yet. I know the day one patch hadn’t been delivered yesterday.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. richiefrank

    Well actually builders do buy all their equipment. They don’t get given them by a PR. If they need a drill, they buy it. If they need a crane, they buy it.

    Minus.VAT of course.

    I just thought with Garrett’s VG manifesto (which claims you shouldn’t accept anything over £50?) that the site would have a bit of integrity. Guess not.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Patrick Garratt

    @5 – I said we’d disclose everything over £50 and promos weren’t included. We have to have hardware and games or we can’t write about them. Go and ask every other games site that isn’t disclosing this stuff why they aren’t. Hassle someone that isn’t actually trying to be honest, eh?

    http://www.vg247.com/2012/10/31/doritosgate-after-the-storm-lets-clean-ourselves-up/

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Gadzooks!

    #5

    Would you mind not being such a fucking idiot please?

    There’s a good chap.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. richiefrank

    I’m just surprised. VG won’t accept flights or hotels but it will accept a £300 console. Seems counterproductive to me.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. Patrick Garratt

    It’s a fair bit more than that, to be honest. We bought one for Sam yesterday (I think it was more like £400 without a game). We got sent two machines as Dave and I were “on the list” in the UK. I have no idea if Brenna and Steph are getting them.

    The thing is that we really do have to have every console and pretty much every core game. It’s an absolute necessity for what we do. It’s just part and parcel of product journalism: you have to look at the product.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Showmeyomoves!

    Richie’s just trolling you, everyone. No one is THAT thick. Let’s move along. :)

    #10 2 years ago
  11. richiefrank

    I’m not trolling. I’m calling into question the ethics of games journalism, which we should all be doing.

    Pat has now explained it very well, but when you see that one person is being sent an expensive console I just had to question it.

    I’m sorry if it seemed as though I was trolling.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. monkeygourmet

    @11

    You have to crawl through Pats legs now! ;)

    #12 2 years ago
  13. ManuOtaku

    I do really like the analogy of the title of this thread, the same princess but different or another castle, nice dave, i think i will get this game because i didnt get the 3ds version therefore i need to check whats different in that castle ;)

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Patrick Garratt

    @11 – No worries. I really do understand the concerns and we are seriously committed to honesty. I’m sorry if I was short.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. richiefrank

    Not a problem, I perhaps went about it in the wrong way myself anyway.

    Though it was Dave’s response that, while less antagonistic, appeared a little naive. Perhaps he needs to think about his reactions.

    Thanks Pat, hope I didn’t spoil everyone’s fun.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Dave Cook

    @15 ‘Perhaps he needs to think about his reactions.’

    No doubt. I’m still learning on that front ;)

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Clupula

    Are we really giving journalists shit about owning every system? I would rather they get sent all of them, rather than talk about shit they don’t have any idea about like Ishaan at Siliconera, who has admitted to not even owning a PS3.

    If you’re getting paid to give your opinion to the masses, you should damn well know what you’re talking about and one of the ways you do that is through receiving the material required to do your job. It’s not like Nintendo sent him a case of white wine. They sent him and game and a system to play it on, so that he could properly review it.

    I don’t see anything shifty about that.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Ireland Michael

    @11 Receieving things from the media does not make you a sellout. My own website gets free game through the nose from large and small publishers alike, but it sure as hell hasn’t stopped us from being honest with our reviews, and we’ve always been willing to score low.

    Journalists need these sort of things to do their job. If they bought them all themselves, they’d never make a sustainable living! Do you think music critics buy all their music? Do you think film buffs wait to go to the cinema to analysise new movie? No, they are provided with the content by the people creating it.

    It’s the professional standard that this sort of thing is always footnoted with a disclaimer. That way nobody can accuse you of hiding anything, or being in someone’s pocket. Just as an example. Dave is a huge Call of Duty fan, yet he was more than willing to drill the Vita Call of Duty game with a tonne of criticism. He’s many things, but he’s no sellout.

    I’m not even sure why you’re criticising him. While Dave says it’s a solid game, he also flat out admits that its no masterpiece and some of the design is a cop-out. Myself personally? I think the New Super Mario is beaten into the ground, and lacks any of the charm that made the franchise so popular and enjoyable in the first place. It needs to be put to bed. It’s tedious and dull.

    #18 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    Sony has posted a video of the Icona Vulcano, which will be released as DLC next week for DriveClub. The video was posted on Facebook and we’ve embedded the video below courtesy of GamesHQMeida. It was announced earlier this week the Icona Vulcano would be released on the PS Store as a free download.

  • The Bard’s Tale 4 announced by inXile Entertainment at PAX South

    The Bard’s Tale 4 was announced today by inXile Entertainment CEO Brian Fargo during a panel at PAX South. inXile hinted around back in December that a sequel was in the works. Granted, The Bard’s Tale wasn’t mentioned. Still, everyone figured this was the game when Wasteland 2 project lead Chris Keenan stated the team […]

  • Here’s another Majora’s Mask 3DS vs N64 comparison video

    Last week, YouTube user Master0fHyrule uploaded a Majora’s Mask 3DS vs N64 comparison video, and we’ve embedded it for you below. The video shows 4.5 minutes of footage which appears before hitting the start button and the first meeting between Link and the Skull Kid. Another comparison video was released by another user back in […]

  • The Game Awards 2015 already in the planning stages

    The Game Awards 2015 are already in the planning stages, according to Geoff Keighley. The inaugural show took place on December 6, 2014. Keighley announced the 2015 show during his Storytime with Geoff Keighley panel at PAX South this weekend and through Twitter. He said more details will be announced in the spring. You can […]

  • Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered listed for January release

    It looks like Quantic Dream’s Indigo Prophecy is returning in remastered form next week, if an Amazon listing is any indication. According to the listing posted on NeoGAF, the uncut version of the game contains Steam DRM and will release January 29 at 12pm PST/3pm EST for a Linux, Mac and PC download. Titled Fahrenheit: […]

  • Indie Flash Sale kicks off on North American PS Store

    The North American end of the PlayStation Store is hosting a Flash Sale a beefy list of indie games and some films. The sales includes titles such as Resogun, Shadow Warrior, The Unfinished Swan, FEZ, Costume Quest 2, Joe Danger, Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons, and more for up to 80% off. The full […]

  • The Witcher 3 Twitch stream to show 15 minutes of new gameplay footage

    New The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt gameplay footage will be shown Monday, January 26 on GOG.com’s Twitch channel. Along with the footage, the developers will be answering questions from the community as well as providing commentary on the gameplay being shown. Live questions posted via Twitter chat will be answered by senior gameplay designer Damien […]

  • Borderlands 3 information teased for tomorrow’s Gearbox PAX South panel

    During PAX South this weekend, Gearbox Software is hosting a panel titled Inside Gearbox Software which will provide “the latest news and updates on Borderlands and upcoming Gearbox titles.” Yesterday during Gearbox’s panel called Question and Answer Time, CEO Rady Pitchford was asked “when or if” fans can expect Borderlands 3. “I’ll tell you what,” […]

  • Best Buy cancels multiple pre-order units of Limited Edition Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL

    Multiple sources reported overnight Best Buy has cancelled some pre-orders for the Limited Edition Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL. As of press time, it appears to only affect those who pre-ordered more than one system. Only one system was allotted per order, so the cancellation notices were sent out to comply with the restriction. Those […]

  • Rob Huebel is your KillCameraman in this CoD: Advanced Warfare video

    A live-action video for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare – Havoc has been released by Activision. Subtitled: Randall Higgins: KillCameraman gives you a look at the action from a different perspective. In the video, Higgins is played by comedic actor and writer Rob Huebel (Children’s Hospital, Parks and Rec, The Mindy Project). The first DLC […]

  • Xbox App features included with Windows 10 January build outlined

    The January build of the Windows 10 Technical Preview includes a basic version of the Xbox App announced earlier this week. With the initial preview release, the team at Microsoft wanted to only include the basics such as high resolution monitor support along with keyboard and mouse input. Additional functionality will be released with each […]

  • Standalone version of DayZ has sold 3 million units

    The standalone version of DayZ sold 3 million units, Bohemia Interactive has announced. Release Just over a year ago on Steam Early Access, the milestone was hit yesterday. The standalone version was created by Dean Hall as a Arma 2 modification which has been updated 24 times since its initial release. In 2014, the development […]

  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt video shows gameplay clips, global hands-on events

    CD Projekt has released a video for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, giving a glimpse of gameplay and noting that hands-on impressions of the game will be bombarding the Internet next week. We’ll have extensive coverage of The Witcher 3 on Monday Jan 26 at 3pm GMT. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is coming to […]

  • Microsoft looking into possible HoloLens support for PC, Xbox One

    Microsoft’s HoloLens may be a dedicated device, but the company is obviously looking into how it could be used with PC and Xbox One. Speaking with Polygon, Xbox boss Phil Spencer said should the stand-alone product become a success, “specific scenarios” on how it could be used with Xbox One are already being brainstormed. “We […]

  • Final Fantasy Type-0 HD video compares PSP graphics to PS4, Xbox One

    A video for Final Fantasy Type-0 comparing the upcoming console version of the game to the original PSP version has been released by Square Enix. While comparing PSP graphics to those of PlayStation 4 and Xbox One seems rather unfair, it’s worth a watch anyway. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD releases March 17 in North America […]

  • Payday 2′s The Bomb Heists and Dragan Character Pack released

    In case you forgot, The Bomb Heists and Dragan Character content packs for Payday 2 were released yesterday. The new heist pack is available for $6.99/€6.99/£4.99 and the Dragan character will run you $4.99/€4.99/£3.99 through Steam and other digital distribution sites. Here’s the details: The Bomb Heists A new contact, called the Butcher, brought to […]

  • Rockstar offers tips on scaling GTA Online creations to support 30 players

    Rockstar has posted a tutorial of sorts on how to edit your GTA Online’s creations to support up to 30 players. According to the developer, when selecting Load Creation, users will be able to access any previously published Jobs and edit them in any way they wish. Users can also increase the Maximum Players races […]

  • Video for Life is Strange shows you how to rewind time

    If you could rewind time, would you change the events of your day or leave things be? In Life is Strange, you will make this choice. In the developer diary below, Dontnot Entertainment touches upon the main character’s ability to rewind time. How Max’s ability works and originated is also discussed. The first episode of […]

  • Take a look at one of the historical battles in Total War: Attila

    The Creative Assembly has revealed historical battles for Total War: Attila and shown off one of them. In the latest episode of Rally Point, developer Creative Assembly takes a look at one of the nine historical battles that will be included in Total War: Attila when it launches next month. But before you see the […]

  • ARMA 3 video lists 33 of its features, teases upcoming expansion

    ARMA 3 is an impressive military simulator, but that’s not the only thing impressive about it. In fact, this video lists 33 of the game’s most notable features. ARMA 3′s latest video gives you a tour of many of its strengths. It goes over the number of vehicles, weapons and playable area. But that’s not […]

  • No Man’s Sky dev explains what you actually do in the game

    No Man’s Sky is simultaneously the most intriguing mystery and the most scary. Developer Hello Games is asked some questions and gives some solid answers. Eurogamer asked Hello Games’ Sean Murray a number of questions that are on everyone’s mind when they think about No Man’s Sky. The biggest one being, what do you actually […]

  • Dying Light physical release set for February 27, Be The Zombie mode goes free

    The release date for the physical version of Dying Light has been confirmed for Europe, along with the release dates for all regions. Dying Light developer Techland has confirmed that the PC version of the game will release digitally, worldwide, on January 27. The physical version and the digital PS4 and Xbox One versions will […]

  • Guild Wars 2 is $10 this weekend

    ArenaNet is offering Guild Wars 2 for $10 this weekend only, and hosting a double XP event during the same period. The regular and Digital Deluxe editions of Guild Wars 2 are both offered at 75% off this weekend. The regular edition can be yours for just $10 while the Deluxe is $15. The offer […]

  • Cyberpunk 2077 development still going, but the focus is on The Witcher 3, says dev

    If you’re dying to hear anything about CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077, you’ll be waiting a while still. The focus is on The Witcher 3 right now. Ever since Cyberpunk 2077′s announcement all the way back in 2012 developer CD Projekt Red has been really quiet about the sci-fi RPG. We’ve not seen any gameplay […]

  • Digital pet Animin gamecards get May release

    With AR being all the go, it might be worth checking out virtual pet Animin for iOS and Android. Game-cards for Animin, the virtual pet for iOS and Android, are set to appear at UK retail this May, the developers have announced. Animin sits on your touch device and does cute stuff. The little dude […]

  • You won’t need a new GPU for DirectX 12, except for some features

    Microsoft has clarified that while you’ll need a new GPU to get the full potential of DirectX 12, existing hardware will support it just fine. Microsoft’s Mike Ybarra said in a press meeting following the Windows 10 event that you will need a new graphics card to get “the full benefits” of DirectX 12. “There […]

  • Assassin’s Creed Victory: fans speculate over characters and locations

    Ubisoft has not yet started talking about Assassin’s Creed: Victory, so some eager fans are speculating about everything they can just from those leaked screens. A very popular thread right now on the Ubisoft forums attempts to gather fans’ specualtion about characters, events and story of Assassin’s Creed: Victory. What followed was quite a lot […]

  • This is what co-op looks like in Dying Light

    Dying Light’s cop-op mode has been given a short demo by developer Techland. Dying Light supports drop-in/ drop-out co-op for up to four players. The entire campaign is playable in co-op, and there are special co-op challenges. Watch as four members of developer Techland take on the game’s zombie apocalypse. Dying Light is out January […]

  • Get Saints Row 2, Saints Row: The Third and all DLC for $5

    Bundle Stars’ latest bundle packs Saints Row 2 and the complete Saints Row: The Third for $5. The Saints Row bundle is priced $5. It is live now and for another 14 days. It comes with Saints Row 2, Saints Row: The Third – The Full Package, which is basically the game plus all the […]

  • Destiny: Xur location and inventory for January 23, 24

    Xur: Agent of the Nine has made the trek to Destiny’s Tower for another week of business. Destiny’s Exotics vendor, Xur: Agent of the Nine has arrived at the Tower as per the weekly schedule. Xur will sell you Exotic weapons and armour pieces if you have the Strange Coins to afford it. He also […]

  • Bloodborne is getting two special edition PS4s in Japan

    Sony will launch two limited-edition, Bloodborne-themed PlayStation 4 bundles in Japan. Two bundles are available, one in black and another in white, complete with a controller and a headset. The hard disk cover is engraved with the title and the cover shot. Both bundles come with the collector’s edition release of the game, which was […]

  • Best Destiny videos of the week – Xur vs Cryptarch rap battle

    Destiny has once more produced a slew of entertaining, educational and occasionally baffling videos. Destiny players have repeatedly sparked crazes by exploiting the game’s little foibles – Sparrow surfing is one example. This latest one is kind of mysterious; I don’t know how it’s done, or why you would want to, but Hidden Reach has […]

  • The Sims 4 free for 48 hours with Origin Game Time

    The Sims 4 is the latest game to be offered free through Origin’s Game Time promotion. The Sims 4 is now free to download from Origin, granting you a 48 hour window to try it out and see if you want to pay for the full game. The free time starts counting as soon as […]

  • Check out Destiny’s new PvP mode, Doubles

    Destiny Crucible players can enjoy a new kind of PvP action with Doubles. Destiny may not be as PvP focused as some Halo fans were hoping, but Bungie is slowly ramping up Crucible support, starting with better Iron Banner events. Some time ago the developer promised to introduce experimental game modes, and the latest Bungie […]

  • Halo: New Blood novel launching digitally in March

    A new Halo novel will explore the backstory of Gunnery Sergeant Edward Buck. Halo: New Blood is a digital-first short novel launching on March 2. The 60,000 word novel was penned by Matt Forbeck, an award-winning author of many licensed fantasy and sci-fi publications. It’s an all-new story, but fans of Halo 3: ODST will […]

  • Destiny players purchased 1.1 million Ice Breakers last week

    Destiny players know what’s hot, and Exotic sniper rifle Ice Breaker is definitely warm. Destiny vendor Xur offered Ice Breaker for sale last weekend, much to the delight of everyone yet to find this terrific bit of gear. According to the latest Bungle Weekly Update, Xur sold 1,143,320 Ice Breakers. He left the tower with […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition nets GLAAD special recognition award

    Dragon Age: Inquisition has been honoured for its diverse representation by LGBT advocacy body GLAAD. Dragon Age: Inquisition will receive a special recognition award for “the many complex and unique LGBT characters prominently integrated throughout the game”. GLAAD doesn’t normally honour video games (maybe one day, if we ever have enough that deserve it), but […]

  • The Order: 1886 AR game is full of puzzles

    The Order: 1886 has spawned a new promotional website with lots of info to ferret out. Called The Order Exposed, the new site pertains to be the blog of a missing researcher, who had been hoping to uncover the secrets of the alternate history. This on its own is quite interesting but it’s also full […]

  • Grow Home is the next game to follow Child of Light, Valiant Hearts

    Ubisoft has announced another small passion project in the wake of the success of recent releases. Child of Light, Valiant Hearts: The Great War and Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon are all the products of a new initiative at Ubisoft where the publisher lets key developers rest after big triple-A projects by working on something […]

  • What mysterious reveal is Xbox teasing for May 4?

    Xbox is teasing something we’ll be waiting quite a while to learn more about. Xbox community manager Raj Patel tweeted the following earlier today: Hmm… pic.twitter.com/4wBGu6xsDc — Raj Patel (@Rajio) January 22, 2015 NeoGAF users spotted the morse code in the background of the image, which translates as follows: “Presented by Xbox, 10am PDT, 1pm […]

  • 2011 PSN hack class action settlement claim forms available

    PlayStation Network members affected by the 2011 hack and downtime can now claim part of a $15 million settlement. The PSN was down for months on end in 2011 following a major hack, which resulted in user details being compromised. Sony apologised and provided free games as compensation, but unhappy gamers banded together in a […]

  • Final Fantasy 15 has a true open world

    Final Fantasy 15 doesn’t just have “open world gameplay”, it has a true open world – one continuous stretch of environment. “The world is connected by continuous land,” director Hajime Tabata told Gamespot. “If those areas were disconnected, it would feel distant from reality. You’ll find that you’ll be able to walk or drive or […]

  • Suikoden, Suikoden 2 EU PSN release date locked down

    Suikoden and its first sequel will be available via the European PlayStation Network soon. Suikoden publisher Konami has confirmed a February 4 release date for the two RPG classics. CONFIRMED! #Suikoden I & II EU #PSN release date is FEB 4TH! http://t.co/ObOIvZDJAK pic.twitter.com/aM760R2Gez — Konami UK (@KonamiUK) January 22, 2015 It’s been a long wait […]

  • Dying Light physical release set for February 20, says Gamestop Italy

    Dying Light’s physical release has been delayed, but at least one European retailer thinks it knows what’s going on. Dying Light’s physical release date is February 20, according to Gamestop Italy. According to Tmag (Italian, via Google Translate), there’s been no response from local representatives of publisher Warner Bros. Although the digital release will take […]

  • Free online multiplayer update now available for Trials Fusion

    Online multiplayer is now available as a free update to Trials Fusion. The online component includes three new four to eight player multiplayer modes on PC, PS4 and Xbox One and up to four players on Xbox 360. These are the three new gameplay modes included with the update can be found through a previous […]

  • This video for indie survival horror Monstrum features all in-game footage

    Monstrum launches on Steam Early Access January 29 and today, you can have a look at a video for it featuring all in-game footage. Developed by Team Junkfish the survival horror game set on a derelict cargo ship which combines roguelike elements, such as procedurally generated levels and permadeath thanks to AI driven predators. Monstrum […]

  • Here’s quick look at Dead Rising: Watchtower starring Rob Riggle

    A short look at the film adaptation of Dead Rising has surfaced. Transformers director Lorenzo di Bonaventura headed the project and it was directed by Zach Lipovsky. It stars comedy actor Rob Riggle as Frank West, along with Academy Awards nominated actress Virginia Madsen (Candyman, Sideways), Dennis Haysbert (24), Meghan Ory (Once Upon a Time), and […]

  • A Kickstarter for Underworld Ascendant will launch next month

    OtherSide Entertainment, an independent games studio fronted by Paul Neurath, has announced it’s developing Underworld Ascendant. Neurath is the founder and CEO of the new studio ad his resume includes franchises such as Thief, System Shock and 1992′s Underworld Underworld. The studio hopes Underworld Ascendant will “innovate and revitalize” the fantasy genre. More details will […]

  • APB Reloaded heading to PS4 and Xbox One during Q2 2015

    APB Reloaded will indeed be heading to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One during late Q2 this year, which puts its release sometime around the end of June. Reloaded Productions announced in September 2014 it was working on bringing the free-to-play PC title to consoles during the Digital Media Wire event in New York City. The […]

  • Game of Thrones: Episode 2 -The Lost Lords arrives in February – video

    Release dates for Game of Thrones: A Telltale Games Series have been announced. A new video offering a “first look” has also appeared. Below is the story synopsis, which you may want to skip if you haven’t played Episode One. House Forrester is in disarray. Their liege lord and his heir are dead, and Ironrath […]

  • The open beta for Nosgoth has gone live

    Consider this a friendly reminder: the Nosgoth open beta has started. Announced last week, the open beta can be accessed through the official website. Once you link your Steam account, just log into the service and start downloading the client. Everyone that plays the tester will receive double XP through January 28. More information is […]

  • First gameplay footage of Homeworld Remastered Collection being shown this weekend

    Homeworld Remastered Collection news and the first gameplay footage of Gearbox Software’s remake will be revealed at PAX South this weekend. The news and video will be shown during the Inside Gearbox Software panel at 10.30am CST on Sunday. It will also be streamed on Twitch. Gearbox is hoping to have Homeworld Remastered released by […]

  • Latest Final Fantasy Type-0 HD video delves more into combat

    Square Enix has released its latest Orience News video for Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, and it provides insight into character combat styles and techniques. In the video you will see the elite combat force of Class Zero going deeper into battle to improve their skills. Combat is party-based and each of the three characters in […]

  • Something really cool happens when you finish Resident Evil HD *spoiler*

    Those who finish Resident Evil HD will be met with a really nice surprise at the end. If you wish to find out what it is on your own, DO NOT head below the break. You have been warned. According to images posted by Reddit user omeganemesis28, a thank you message from Resident Evil creator […]