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Thief: opening the door to the next generation

Friday, 5 April 2013 16:37 GMT By Stace Harman

Thief gives Stace Harman a first-hand glimpse into the spectacle of next-gen games, but underlines how even with extra power behind them, some things never change.

Thief

2014’s Thief will mark the return of master pilferer Garrett, ten years after he last appeared in Thief: Deadly Shadows on Xbox and PC.

Thief supports pacifist playthroughs, but game producer Stephane Roy goes further to suggest that “technically speaking, avoiding conflict is actually the main goal of this game.”

Thief will take place in The City, an unnamed locale in a period that’s described as being “Victorian, on the verge of industrial revolution.” The game is being built using a heavily modified Unreal Engine 3.

Thief’s first-person viewpoint will occasionally switch to third-person to aid with environmental traversal and “offer a different flavour of play”.

Thief is being developed by Eidos Montreal and is set for release on PC, PS4 in 2014.

Watching Eidos Montreal’s Thief demo on PC, I’m struck by two things. The first is the aesthetically pleasing display of dynamic lighting, volumetric smoke, god-rays and weather effects that’s being delivered to my eyeballs. The second is just how completely it is undermined by the simple act of opening a door.

The play-through I’m watching is that which was concisely described by Dave a little while back.

In it, master thief Garrett scales the rooftops of a darkened cityscape in order to orientate himself, prior to hot-footing across town to reach the House of Blossoms brothel before the clock strikes 12.

Eschewing the heavily guarded front door of the pleasure house for a conveniently overlooked hole in the wall, Garrett slips inside, incapacitates a guard, burglarises a strongbox and pick-pockets a patron.

All actions are expertly carried out without raising suspicion as Garrett surreptitiously extinguishes light sources to facilitate his slinking through the shadows. It’s atmospheric, moody and watching Garrett ply his illicit trade provides an undeniable frisson of excitement.

And then he opens a door and my brain pulls a sad face.

We’ve all seen it play out a thousand times before: player gets within a few feet of a conventional door, player presses button on controller, door swings open without being touched by avatar. It’s a very familiar scenario and that’s precisely the cause of my consternation.

Where is Garrett’s natural caution? Why doesn’t he ease the door open and peek round it? Why is the door either wide open or shut tight? There’s an immediate sense of disconnect between player, avatar and game-world that’s caused by such mundane trifles as having a door swing open without being touched.

It’s something that we’ve grown used over the years but equally it’s something that could become increasingly difficult to accept or ignore as we move toward the brave new world of next-gen.

Putting this to Thief producer Stephane Roy elicits a thoughtful pause before he delivers an unexpected answer, “It’s a tradition, if I may call it that, that’s known throughout the video game industry: doors are a pain in the arse.”

“In terms of the AI understanding the role that doors play, how to navigate them, how they affect the layout of a room … in real life opening a door is nothing but in a game it’s more complicated. Then there’s the animation of the action and the angles from which a player can perform it; it’s a lot of work. That said, I agree, this is next-gen and the idea that there is some kind of magic door that just swings open is not good.

“The most important thing for us is immersion and that you believe in this world. This type of detail can undo that. I cannot promise you anything but I am certainly putting some pressure on people on my team to find solutions to these kinds of problems.”

Of course, the opening of a door is merely representative of a host of accepted conventions and immersion-breaking problems to be addressed by Thief and its next-gen brethren. Guards incapable of looking up, amnesiac AI outfoxed by breaking its line of sight, gimmicky super-powered vision that highlights objectives and provides solutions to puzzles.

There are a lot of things that we’ve gotten used to seeing in our games that developers of next-gen titles are going to have the power to address. The question is: will they?

Sumptuous visuals aside, it’s disappointing to see a next-gen game being played in exactly the same way as a current-gen title. However, what’s more encouraging is the conversation that I have with Roy afterwards in which he addresses many of these concerns.

For example, he speaks of how the increased processing power of next-gen machines allows for AI to be managed on many more levels than is currently possible and how it will facilitate a more seamless transition between states of awareness.

What’s more, veteran guards can display more complex behaviour patterns than low-level rookies, meaning that tricks that work against some AI entities won’t necessarily work in the same way against others.

“For us, the big thing with the next generation is how it will allow us to really concentrate on creating an immersive experience,” Roy reiterates. “We’re having a lot of conversations internally about how to address issues and ensure that the world feels believable.”

It’s at this point that I bring up Focus, Garrett’s vision-altering power that will be familiar to players of Tomb Raider, Batman, Hitman, Assassin’s Creed and a host of other games. Here, Focus is a limited resource that can be used to highlight objects, aid pickpocket and lock-picking attempts, and facilitate takedowns during combat.

Thief director Nicholas Cantin has previously stated that use of this power will be “completely the player’s choice”, but in the level I watch, Garrett uses it to uncover hidden glyphs to solve a mission-critical puzzle and there really doesn’t appear to be any other way to achieve that without using Focus.

“The Focus is really linked with the story, something happens at the beginning of the story that makes sense of it … we’ve worked very hard to make sure that it doesn’t feel like a video game gimmick and having said that its use will be optional, we have to work very hard to make sure of that,” Roy explains. “If we have a puzzle that all of the people in this city cannot solve [without Focus], then we have to be able to explain why that is.”

Reading between the lines it seems likely that, as things stand, the use of Focus during moment-to-moment game play will be optional but that Garrett’s reliance on it in other instances is inextricably tied to the narrative.

In truth, this first 30-minute look at Thief raises more questions than Roy has time to answer. He promises future demos will better illustrate how the AI behaves and how myriad approaches will affect the way a level plays out, but that will have to wait for another day.

In the meantime, it’s exciting to imagine how light and shadow, a contrast that has always played a fundamental role in Thief series, might affect game play. The possibilities that could be explored through clever use of dynamic light-sources, real-time shadows and genuine reflections could fundamentally enhance the Thief experience beyond anything that is currently possible on PS3 and 360.

Of course, video game conventions are not going to change overnight. It’s going to be a while before we find out whether Thief, or indeed any of the first-wave of next-gen exclusive titles, will offer a genuinely new experience or, at the very least, more than just a shiny new wrapper.

To paraphrase Roy, for me the next gen is less about the number of polygons being pushed around the screen and more about what those polygons are doing. I just hope that extends to how they open doors.

Thief will launch on PC, PS4 and “other next-generation consoles” in 2014.

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19 Comments

  1. _LarZen_

    We have next gen hardware and next gen graphics. What we need now is next gen games.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. SameeR_Fisher

    The Door, I wish developer would play Splinter Cell Chaos Theory -which is kinda the king of stealth games, at least to me- Sam Fisher holds the door, he can swing it open, or control how much of it he opens to peak around corners, I really miss such attention to details.

    Focus, again Splinter Cell, they introduced the trifocals goggles, you could use the Thermal Vision to see the finger prints in a keypad in SAR, or see mines, or sometimes see guards behind thin wall -rarely-, it was REALISTIC, but now ?!, it is all about supernatural vision and tracking and BS.

    Thanks Stace for actually being worried and seeing faults that other would generally just let go.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. fearmonkey

    I think it’s great Stace that you called them on the door thing. That is a good call, hopefully they listen to your feedback and implement something. I could see where an animation evertime a door was opened would be annoying, especially if they have a ton of doors. Having that animation could affect level design. I applaud bringing it up :)

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Stace Harman

    @1 +1

    @2 @3 Thanks, folks. We’ve waited a long time for the next gen and I’m keen for devs to prove that it’s been worth it.

    Also, @2, the Splinter Cell example is a great one. If you’re heavily invested in stealth, things like how your avatar interacts with a door has a big effect on the game play experience.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. cw5th

    Another thing that crossed my mind as i was reading through this article. What about creaking doors/doorhandels?

    That would be one of the worst things a Thief can come across i would assume.

    The whole house is dead silent, no one is making a noise. Garret opens a door and “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh”… “shit”.

    It would be quite difficult and the player has to time the opening of a door with a loud noise(which belongs into the natural sound of the scene(Clocktower or something like that)), but it would be so aweome if it works out…

    Just a thought.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. apollyonbob

    @4 Yeah, it has a huge effect. And yes, doors are a pain in the ass. But it’s kind of like … what have they been doing? I would think that “making stealth work” and AI would be, you know, kind of priority #1 and #2 respectively.

    Instead, they’ve probably been working on … what, the graphics?

    #6 2 years ago
  7. TheWulf

    I completely agree about the door.

    I remember that Penumbra, in some ways, felt like a very natural evolution of thief. So did Amnesia. What I want to happen, what I desperately want to happen… what should happen… The Amnesia devs need to make a spiritual Thief successor. No, really. They do.

    Penumbra got that feeling of caution right, and Amnesia refined it. It was for survival horror rather than thievery of course, but if you play Penumbra and Amnesia, and look past the horror, the feeling of a thief game is very much present. That’s what I want from a Thief game, not PUSH BUTAN SWING OPEN DOOR.

    This is pretty much off my list, but at some point… I’m hoping someone shows the mainstream how it’s done.

    But right now I kind of want to go and follow around Frictional Games like a lost puppy with my plaintive pleas of ‘oh please won’t you use that brilliant engine of yours to make a true Thief successor? Oh please

    I want another Thief game. But this isn’t it. Come on, Frictional, I know you have it in you.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. TheWulf

    Plus! The atmosphere of Amnesia/Penumbra is absolutely perfect for a Thief game, it’s very reminiscent of the older ones. The older Thief games had an atmosphere that you’d need a good steak knife to carve through, it was something that could get your heart beating. Plus, there were more… disturbing elements of Thief.

    Really, Frictional Games would be my dream Thief designers. They have the atmosphere down, the disturbing elements, the art, the gameplay (that feeling of caution and building fear)… why are these guys doing what Frictional could do so much better? If I had money, I’d throw it at Frictional to do a Thief successor just to spite them.

    Almost tempted to shoot a mail Frictional’s way rambling about this.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. SameeR_Fisher

    @4Stace: that’s exactly why I am kinda against mainstreaming in Stealth games, the devs begin to lose focus on the important little stuff, sure they can make a balanced games, but the stealth would never compare to a pure stealth title.

    It is sad times we are living in where mainstreaming is a must, I would love to see a Splinter Cell title or any new IP in the vein of Chaos Theory.

    Thief -as far as I know- is the first stealth game in next gen, so alot of pressure on it, I want it to deliver, I want it to try and remain as stealthy and hardcore as possible, we need a strong pure stealth titles alongside the balanced mixed stealth/action titles.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. RandomTiger

    Great stuff Stace, not sure if the door thing in itself is a good or bad idea, I would have to playtest it. But developers need to understand that next gen is an importunity to step up more than just the graphics.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. karma

    I just can’t be excited for this reimagining. No way in hell they are gonna make a faithful to the original Thief game in this day and age of dumbed down, mass market appeal games. It just won’t be Thief. Just antoher stealth action game that isnt half as immersive as the original.

    I mean, come on they got qte like combat encounters, no Stephen Russel as Garrett, increased focus on combat, Mirrors Edge style free running and the worst of all a third person climbing camera? Did they learn nothing from Ion Storm’s Deadly Shadows?

    Sorry but as a big fan of the original 2 games, this doesn’t interest me.

    Maybe if Deus Ex: HR had felt more like the original DE, then i’d give em a chance, but it felt so watered down by comparison.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Jerykk

    While it would be nice to be able to open the door in various ways (ala Chaos Theory), what’s more important is that the AI recognize that the door has been opened. The AI should remember the default state for environmental objects like doors, so if a door is closed by default, they should get suspicious if they see it open. They did this in NOLF2 and it was pretty awesome.

    Speaking of memory, the AI should have it. In every stealth game I’ve ever played, the AI has extremely short-term memory. They can notice a series of suspicious occurrences but as long as you space them out appropriately, the AI will always return to its idle state as if everything is fine and dandy. The size of the suspicion increments should increase with each subsequent event. So, the first time a guard hears a weird noise, his suspicion increases by 10. The second time he hears something, it increases by 50. The third time, 100.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. reask

    Excellent article Stace and my reason for visiting this site on a daily basis upon other great journos like Dave and Sam to mention but a few.

    Nail on the head was nailed in this article.
    Stop with the pretty games and bloody work on the actual game please.

    God of war 1 and 2 for example, I mean solid gameplay doing the job over cosmetics.
    THIS IS WHAT WE YEARN FOR DEVS SO PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE TAKE NOTE.
    Kindest regards Reask.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Kuwabara

    Different animations can be used depending on the angle and speed you approach the door. How about being able to drop down and in first person view look under the door for feet or shadows, or be able to put your ear against the door to hear the vibrations of sound from the other end. There’s plenty of ways to do this and it can add some exciting gameplay elements.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. DarkElfa

    So basically, what is happening in this next generation is the Uncanny Valley of in-game movements.

    As things become more real, the animations become far more noticeable and distracting. While they can almost make the models and textures look photo-realistic, the actual movements and interactions of models are far behind the curve.

    A living being makes random movements that are rarely duplicated, but that is almost if not straight out impossible to do in-game.

    Until true AI is achieved and computers can create things like random movement on the fly, it’s a valley that cannot be traversed.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Phoenixblight

    @15

    Only way to counter the uncanny valley is with 3d scanners and mo cap much like Fox Engine. But in reality it is quite a cost up front to do this and smaller studios and publishers won’t be able to pull it off. THis is generally why I like stylistic approach it makes the game timeless and not as obvious being outdated.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. manamana

    Bravo Stace! The attention to the door “detail” tells the whole story of sluggish game developement and why immersion of a gaming world will fall apart without attention to such details considering the context of the game.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Erthazus

    So it’s a Thief for a console gamer.

    Great. Just great. I’m sure that Thief community will be pissed so much about this. that’s what i’m talking about. With a small controller that has 16+ buttons and crappy “AIM” you can’t make a decent stealth game. It’s going to be stealth action game with cut scenes and stupid AI because most of the console gamers will not use gadgets, think or wait some time to do things… but will start killing them with a bow… In Deadly Shadows you could actually kill a person with a dagger but that was hard as F. If you didn’t know how to do it you would die in 3 hits.

    There was a reason why Thief 1 and 2 were never released on a console. Now, good bye to stealth games.. welcome to another shitty Action game with a bow.

    Why making a stealth game for a community that Does not like stealth games at all? Just for the sake of making it an action game and sell to idiots? F. that.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. GwynbleiddiuM

    @18 Last stealth game Eidos produced clearly shows where the company stand on the subject, each feet on the side of the genre in a dock position, splashing poop all over it.

    #19 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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  • 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 […]

  • Minecraft Mass Effect Mash-Up and Pattern Texture Pack out from today

    A Mass Effect Mash-up pack and the Pattern Texture Pack will release on PlayStation 3, PS4 and Vita today in North America and tomorrow in Europe. The Pattern Texture Pack is also available for Xbox consoles today. The Mass Effect Mash-Up pack contains the Mars Facility from Mass Effect 3 plus textures and craftable items […]

  • The Talos Principle expansion pack Road to Gehenna announced

    An expansion for The Talos Principle has been announced titled Road to Gehenna. The expansion follows the narrative of Uriel, Elohim’s messenger, as he explores a “strange, hidden part of the simulation” on a mission of “mercy and redemption.” Uriel is attempting to free the souls of the damned “at all costs.” Road to Gehenna […]

  • Twitch Plays Pokemon finally catches ‘em all – even the rare Mewtwo

    Twitch Plays Pokemon players have captured all 151 original Pokemon which were included in a modified version of Pokemon Red, and this includes the rare Mewtwo. It took 39 days for Twitch players to catch ‘em all. Have a look at the impressive feat for yourself below. Thanks, Polygon.

  • GameStop will have limited units of Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL back in stock

    Those who missed out on the Limited Edition Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL will have another opportunity to purchase it outside of eBay. Tomorrow only, GameStop stores in the United States will have four units in stock, according to and internal memo sent to Kotaku. This is every store in the country, and again, only […]

  • Second phase of Fortnite closed Alpha launches today

    Fortnite’s second closed Alpha test will go live this afternoon, according to the official website. Those currently participating will have until April 14 to test the online aspects for 12 hours per day (noon -12am EDT). All progress from the previous Alpha test will be wiped, and other changes are listed in the patch notes. […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition: Jaws of Hakkon out now on PC, Xbox One

    As promised yesterday, the single-player DLC for Dragon Age: Inquisition, Jaws of Hakkon, is now available on PC and Xbox One. It will run you or £11.99 or your regional equivalent. The new content expands the land of Thedas with mountainous regions and forests, and it is full of “vicious enemies.” Players will also be […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare trailer shows Ascendance gameplay

    Activision has released a new gamepay trailer for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare to support the Ascendance DLC which releases next week. Ascendance, will release first on Xbox consoles March 31 and includes the next chapter of the Exo Zombies Saga, Infected, along with four new multiplayer maps: Perplex, Site 244, Climate and Chop Shop. […]

  • Batman: Arkham Knight will be a digital only release on PC – report

    It appears Batman: Arkham Knight will not see a physical release on PC, according to ShopTo. The retailer was told by its buyer the Rocksteady game will only be released on PC in digital form. ShopTo is currently double checking the information. If accurate, it is unknown if this will be case in North America […]

  • Bloodborne patch focusing on load times, performance optimizations in the works

    A patch for Bloodborne which will address load times is in the works, Sony has said The load times were one of the issues noted in Digital Foundry’s report on the From Software title. Sony told Eurogamer the patch would also explore other issues as well. “The development team is currently exploring another patch for […]

  • Gearbox would “love” to have entire Borderlands collection on current-gen

    An Xbox One and PlayStation 4 version of the original Borderlands game is something Gearbox Software is interested in, according to studio boss Randy Pitchford. Speaking in the latest Major Nelson podcast, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford said should Borderlands: The Handsome Collection prove successful, 2K Games might consider a current-gen version. “The fact that The […]

  • Wolfenstein: The Old Blood artwork shows the catacombs, dock, more

    Over the weekend we posted Wolfenstein: The Old Blood artwork along with news of a retail release in Europe. Today, we have better quality images of said artwork to share with you. Enjoy. The standalone prequel will be released digitally on May 5 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One in North America, and digitally on […]

  • Slender: The Arrival terrorizes PS4 and Xbox One this week

    In case you forgot, what with Bloodborne out today and other high profile releases of late, Slender: The Arrival is out today on PlayStation 4 in North America. The scary game will arrive on Xbox One tomorrow, March 25, and in Europe on PS4. Slender: The Arrival is an expansion on the original Slender game […]

  • World of Warcraft’s WoW Token rollout slated after launch of patch 6.1.2

    Blizzard has announced it will start rollout its WoW Token option in the weeks following the launch of patch 6.1.2 on March 24. WoW Token allows players to exchange in-game gold for game time and vice versa. Blizzard will release WoW Token first in realms serving North America, Oceania, and Latin America and will expand […]

  • The Evil Within: The Consequence dated for April, teaser video released

    Part 2 of Juli Kidman’s adventure in The Evil Within will arrive next month with the release of The Consequence. Above is a brief teaser showing some of the “madness” Kidman will encounter. The Consequence will arrive on Tuesday, April 21 on PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. European PlayStation players will […]

  • Bloodborne sometimes “struggles to run at a smooth frame-rate” per performance analysis

    Bloodborne has been analyzed by Digital Foundry and according to the report, even with a 30fps cap the game sometimes “struggles to run at a smooth frame-rate.” The game’s day-one 2.69GB update 1.01 is “essential” as it contains improvements to game performance and stability and the frame-rate tests run by Digital Foundry were in single-player […]

  • Borderlands: The Handsome Collection reviews round-up

    Borderlands: The Handsome Collection reviews are out in the wild so we decided to catch a few of them for you. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is out today on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The collection packages Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel along with each game’s DLC content on one disc. Better graphics and […]

  • Evolve, Forza Horizon 2, WWE 2K15 are this week’s Deals with Gold

    Evolve, Forza 2 Horizon and WWE 2K15 are just some of the games which are part of this week’s Xbox Deals with Gold. You can also pick up the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Pro Edition for 20% off as well as the standard edition for 33% off. For the Xbox 360 crowd, there’s also […]

  • Xbox 360 2015 Spring Value bundles now available starting at $250

    Microsoft is offering a discount on three Xbox 360 bundles with prices starting at $250. The Xbox 360 2015 Spring Value bundles feature various content such as a Kinect, 500GB console bundle and one month of Xbox Live Gold. Xbox 360 500GB Spring Value Bundle: comes with Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare download and Fable […]

  • Rainbow Six Siege beta sign ups now open

    Ubisoft is letting everyone register for the upcoming Rainbow Six Siege closed beta. Rainbow Six Siege is due for a closed beta sometime this year. Ubisoft has opened registration to everyone. All you need to do is enter your preferred platform and log in using your Uplay account. You will be entered into a waiting […]

  • Advanced Warfare: Exo Zombies map Infection is creepy

    The upcoming chapter in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’s Exo Zombies mode is called ‘Infection’ and Activision has been slowly revealing bits and pieces about it. A few teasers have been dropping ahead of Ascendance launch this month. The teasers are about the second episode in the Exo Zombie story, Infection. First off, the map. […]

  • This is the Bloodborne press kit in all its glory

    Bloodborne is a gorgeous game so it’s only fitting that the press kit it came in is a reflection of that. The pictures capture the many amazing bits of the Bloodborne press kit. A press kit is what’s usually sent to the reviewers alongside the review copy. They’re usually very ornate and almost all of […]

  • This Hearthstone turn is taking over 40 hours and you can watch it happen

    A very smart Hearthstone player has rigged his game to make one turn take over 40 hours, and it has been going for over 22 already. Hearthstone player Mamytwink set up a game against his friend to try and achieve the record for the longest turn in Hearthstone ever. Basically, Mamytwink set the game up […]

  • The Witcher 3: Geralt’s beard grows over time, but not Gandalf-long

    The beard of The Witcher 3 protagonist Geralt will grow over time, but you can trim it if you choose to. As part of a recently published impressions piece by German magazine Gamestar (translated by NeoGAF), The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt developers revealed that Geralt’s beard will in fact grow over time. Not content with […]

  • Sony mistakenly abandons Bloodborne trademark in the US

    The administration side of Sony Computer Entertainment has not been in the best of shapes recently. Sony has abandoned four game trademarks yesterday, one of which is for Bloodborne. The trademarks were all registered with US Patent and Trademark Office. All of the games trademarks pertain to unreleased games and Sony would’ve had to either […]

  • Payday 2 will be supported until 2017

    Payday 2 developer has announced that it will continue to support the game for the next two years. Payday 2 developer Overkill has revealed today that it’s planning to support the game until 2017. What this means is that more free content as well as paid DLC are in the works for release later. Payday […]

  • These are the top Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare weapons, according to the developer

    Based on their overall kill-to-death ratio, what are the best guns in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare? Developer Sledgehammer reveals the top 5. Sledgehammer’s Michael Condrey has revealed on Twitter the top 5 weapons in Advanced Warfare based on their overall kill-to-death ratio. Here’s the list: ARX-160 – Hole Puncher Ameli – Heavy HBRa3 – […]

  • H1Z1 has sold more than 1 million copies

    H1Z1 has already sold over 1 million copies on Steam. H1Z1 may still be in Early Access on Steam, but it has already sold more than 1 million copies. Daybreak president John Smedley announced on Twitter earlier. H1Z1 launched in January and instantly became a hit. The game has consistently been on Steam’s top 10 […]