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“I could not be happier”: Fargo on fans as publishers

Monday, 15 April 2013 14:02 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Free from the dictates of tradition-bound publishers, inXile boss Brian Fargo is answerable to at least 74,00 bosses, and as our huge GDC 2013 interview reveals, he wouldn’t have it any other way.

The beauty of crowd-funding

Started in 2002 by Interplay Productions co-founder Brian Fargo.

Specializes in role-playing games.

Known for 2004′s The Bard’s Tale and 2011′s Hunted: The Demon’s Forge among others.

Currently developing Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera through Kickstarter funding.

Has pledged 5% of post-launch net profits of Wasteland 2 to back future Kickstarter projects.

After acquiring the rights to Wasteland back from Konami in 2003, inXile Entertainment founder Brian Fargo announced in 2007 he was planning to bring back the game which inspired the original Fallout.

Then, all went quiet until that fateful day in February 2012 when Fargo announced Wasteland 2 would soon be up for crowd-funding. On March 13, 2012, the Kickstarter page for Wasteland 2 went live with $900,000 needed to fund development. Within 43 hours, the goal was surpassed, and when dust cleared on April 17, Wasteland 2 had raised over $2.9 million.

It was the third highest crowd funded game on Kickstarter at the time, and an additional $107,152 was donated through PayPal pledges.

Due to such overwhelming success, in January 2013, inXile decided to try its hand at Kickstarter again: this time, with the spiritual successor to Planescape: Torment, Tides of Numenera after the acquisition of the Torment license. The firm was understandably nervous doing so, as it would be the second project it posted to the crowd funding site within a year’s time.

Such trepidation seemed to be justified when funding for the project seemed to stagnate at one point – before it took off like a rocket and became the second largest gaming Kickstarter to date.

“The first time around, with Wasteland 2, there wasn’t enough data to signify to me [stagnation] was normal,” inXile founder Brian Fargo told me during GDC. “So we thought we were in the middle of a drop-off, but we were wrong. We were like, ‘what happened?’ But we soon found out it’s a very natural progression.

“I read that 87% of Kickstarter projects are small, and I think that in the beginning, someone said only half of the projects were getting financed and only one quarter of those were video games. That’s insane. I mean, if you are out pitching products to publishers, maybe 1% of those are successful. This means that the successful one quarter on Kickstarter being financed brings that figure up to 20-25%. That is a huge statistic.”

“Kickstarter is maturing and helping vet projects what wouldn’t have sold. There is always a concept people will get behind. You just have to figure out what it is.”

With so many games and hardware options being financed through Kickstarter, many have predicted that the bubble is going to burst. While such a thing could be construed as inevitable, it’s not hard to suspect things are indeed slowing down, what with projects from high-profile developers either barely scraping by or failing to meet funding goals. Two such titles comes to mind off the top of my head: 22Cans’ Godus which we all thought at one point wasn’t going to make it, and Robotoki’s The Adventures of Dash, respectively.

“For a while all I heard about was Kickstarter fatigue or that it wasn’t going to happen or whether we should do another one,” said Fargo. “And I thought, if I can provide compelling reasons why and give people more detail – I mean you’ll notice the Torment pitch video was way more detailed than Wasteland 2 , and that’s because the expectations were different than a year ago. Just a year made a difference. But we took more time with the Torment pitch and if you are really striking the right chords and personifying and people understand why they should support a project with their money, I think Kickstarter will continue to do well.”

Fargo believes many Kickstarter projects fail due to pitches which don’t follow “the golden rules,” such as those that only show game footage. For a developer trying to get their game funded, such lack of attention to detail can make or break them. Backers need to know the developer: their background; their goals; their intentions with the title; why they have taken to Kickstarter in the first place instead of going the traditional route.

“I could never have raised money from the venture capitalists to do what I’m doing. It just wouldn’t have happened. Kickstarter is still in a growth period. Like all entertainment mediums, the filtering is going to get tighter.”

An example of one Kickstarter project which failed was the Fire Emblem-style tactical RPG, Telepath Tacitics. However, according to Fargo, the reason the title is once again back on Kickstarter, and successful this time, is because its developer learned from the previous failure.

“Look at Craig Stern: he went onto Kickstarter with Telepath Tactics and failed, yet people liked what they saw and knew he was a bright guy,” Fargo said. “So, he made another run at it and he’s funded this time. He learned and proved himself through failure, and came back and made it happen.

“I believe with the indies that if they are persistent and they show something they will start to have people recognize their talent and will have a chance to make it. They have to keep going. There is no other way. It’s just not as easy as it was that first year of Kickstarter when everything was going wild – it was like when the Internet exploded and everyone was becoming a millionaire.”

Fargo believes Kickstarter isn’t a trend. It will continue to be a source of funding; however, it has matured and is no longer going through its “unnatural” first phase.

“It’s maturing and helping vet projects what wouldn’t have sold,” he said. “I have friends with Kickstarters that didn’t work out and, I tell them that people still like them, and like what they do – they just didn’t care for that particular concept. They voted. They didn’t like it. There is always a concept people will get behind. You just have to figure out what it is: there’s so much psychology at work.

“I could never have raised money from the venture capitalists to do what I’m doing. It just wouldn’t have happened. I don’t see it going away, its still in a growth period, it’s just that like all entertainment medium, the filtering is going to get tighter. There are some developers who are trying to make Kickstarter their first project source. That’s a hard way to cut your teeth production wise. I mean, for example: ‘Here’s a Flash game. Isn’t it really great? Well now I am going to do this.’ There are a lot of indies out there who have never produced anything before and say: ‘give us money.’ That’s a harder conversation.

“Also, I think those products will be coming less and less, but that doesn’t mean it will prevent the indie from finding a way to get their voice out there through Flash or Unity or whatever the case may be. I have been doing this for 30 years so I have a bigger voice, for these guys to be in my position later they have got to get something to market so that people can see them and start to build a fan base. ”

Triple-A, the lack of indie support, and sexy heroines

Post-apocalyptic RPG co-developed by Obsidian Entertainment’s Chris Avellone, and sequel to 1988′s Wasteland.

Kickstarter launched March 13, 2012 with a $900,000 goal. Contributions hit over $600,000 within 24-hours. Funding ended April 17 with $2,933,252 raised through Kickstarter and $107,152 through PayPal.

Members returning from the original Wasteland team include: Alan Pavlish, Ken St. Andre, Liz Danforth, Nathan Long, Colin McComb, Mark Morgan (Fallout and Fallout 2 composer), and Michael Stackpole.

Is number six on Kickstarter’s “Most Funded” list, nestled between Double Fine Adventure and Homestuck Adventure Game.

Slated for Linux, Mac, and PC in late 2013 and will be bundled with the original title.

Much has changed since Brian Fargo first’s foray into the industry in 1982, after having been bitten by the video game bug with his first Apple II computer back in 1977. Fargo’s first game released was the graphic text-adventure RPG Demon’s Forge, which he developed and marketed himself as he worked on various educational games for World Book Encyclopedia.

By 1983, he had founded Interplay Productions where he developed another text-adventure game called Mindshadow which was published by Activision. Then came Bard’s Tale for Apple II and Commodore 64 from publisher Electronic Arts. After finding success, Fargo co-designed Wasteland and in 1988 Interplay became both a development studio and publishing house.

Interplay published Silicon & Synapse’s RPM Racing, developed by Ayman Adham and Michael Morhaime – who eventually changed their name to a Blizzard Entertainment. Other studios which found publishing deals under Interplay include Parallax Software, which was later renamed Volition, and even BioWare. Under Interplay’s Black Isle division, Baldur’s Gate, Icewind Dale and Planescape: Torment were released, as was the original Fallout.

During the mid-1990′s, Universal/MCA had purchased a 45% stake in Interplay, and the firm went public in 1998. However, the firm’s main investor Titus Software and Fargo had a difference of opinion on how to run the company, so in 2000 Titus took over control of Interplay, a move which caused Fargo to resign.

It’s no wonder Fargo is less than trustful of large publishing firms, and is a huge supporter of indies. He started out as one; became entangled in big business politics and money; left for while; and now he’s making a comeback on his own terms in an era where indie is taking on triple-A – and by all accounts succeeding.

Independent developers are younger, hungry, tired of the status quo, and ready to fight tooth and nail for a place in gamer’s homes and handhelds.

“Look at the indie scene now compared to 2004. There was no Steam. There was no Kongregate. There was nothing for indies. It was the Dark Ages,” he said.

“You have to look at the snapshot over the last decade rather than the last year. You’ve got consoles like OUYA and GameStick – you’ve got all these companies embracing them, you’ve got Sony, Steam, you’ve got Project Greenlight, Kickstarter, it’s so much better now than it was. There was nothing back then.

“In fairness, you’ve got to have some perspective regarding what’s happened over this last decade to give so many more people a chance. I mean, there was literally nothing and there’s not a lot of opportunity in the triple-A space for indies to go pitch publishers. It’s almost non-existent. Thankfully we have these other vehicles now.

“I mean who would have thought a few years ago that Apple would come along with iPad and obliterate Nintendo. Who would have thought that would’ve happened?”

Fargo isn’t shy when voicing his opinion on the triple-A scene, and since he is an independent developer, he doesn’t have to worry about focus groups hired by larger publishers which dictate what sells and what doesn’t sell in the marketplace, such as the idea of a video game having a female protagonist as a main character.

“I think people were overly influenced by Tomb Raider and being the sexy heroine. Now, that isn’t what is necessary or needed to make a game work.”

Publishers have tried to force their ideas on developers – like Naughty Dog , a venerable developer which was asked to push Ellie to the back the box art for The Last of Us – with the suggestion that the game would not sell as well to what is deemed a predominantly male audience. Beyond: Two Souls developer Quantic Dream was also asked to show star Jodie Holmes brandishing a gun on the game’s cover. Both developers refused to budge. Dontnod were even told by publishers it pitched Remember Me to that female characters ‘don’t sell video games’, before signing with on with Capcom.

This insistence that women don’t work as protagonists, and serve merely as over-sexualised eye candy or romantic interest, is something Fargo blames on focus groups tested by marketing firms stuck in the glory days of Tomb Raider.

“This is my theory: I think people were overly influenced by Tomb Raider and being the sexy heroine,” Fargo told me. “In Wasteland, we have a female character and she’s a bad ass so I think that’s more where [female protagonists] are going.

“I think that Tomb Raider kind of broke the mold in having a female heroine. But she was sexy, so I think there was a natural marketing inclination that thought: ‘well that worked, so let’s kind of stick with that formula.’ Now, that isn’t what is necessary or needed to make a game work.

“I think we’re finally seeing an evolution beyond the Tomb Raider, sexy-heroine-only sort of attitude. I think that that’s suggesting itself pretty quickly in this climate.”

Going back to his roots

Spiritual successor to 1999′s Planescape: Torment.

Centers around a story-driven campaign set in Numenera, and authored by Monte Cook.

Launched on Kickstarter March 6, 2013 and was successfully funded within six hours.

Backers pledged $4.2 million towards $900,000 goal. It’s the second most funded gaming Kickstarter of all time.

Set for release in 2015 on Linux, Mac, and PC.

With Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera, Fargo and his team at inXile Entertainment are going back to their role-play roots after “not being able to develop,” what they wanted, and instead, doing “everything else.”

One such title the firm worked on in its early days, which was far from an RPG, was HEI$T for Codemasters: an open-world title set in San Francisco, California, circa 1969. In it, players controlled a group of criminals as they performed dozens of heists which would inevitably turn them into the greatest bank robber of all time. In addition to knocking off banks throughout the city, players would pull off further jobs such as raiding bars, restaurants, strip clubs, armored cars, and more in order to acquire the bigger and better tools needed to penetrate the increasingly more difficult banks and, eventually, the San Francisco Mint.

It sounded promising, but after being originally slated for release around Christmas 2007, in March 2008 Codemasters delayed the PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 title to June the same year. After the announcement, the game fell off the radar until it was revealed in 2010 that it had been cancelled. Codemasters said at the time the project had been “terminated” as the firm was shifting focus to “high quality titles that will, in the majority, be developed and produced,” by its internal studios.

According to Fargo, the game had potential, and its troubled development cycle stemmed, in part, from too much publisher input.

“That was a game which had a lot of potential, and the writing was very Quentin Tarantino-ish. It had Christian Slater in it and he did wonderful job, he was very funny, ” said Fargo. “But that was just another situation where the developer just needed to be left alone to do their thing.

“It’s tough to be a developer, and on that particular project, we had an agreement where we would create an open-world game using Unreal Engine on the PS3 – but the specs didn’t exist yet. So, at that point you’re guessing and then when you finally get there you find there’s a performance issue and you say: ‘eh, let’s just drop it. We can make it run great on PC and Xbox – but [Codemasters wanted] PS3.

HEI$T – A grainy video of what might have been

“We didn’t know about the RAM issues or performance issues with Unreal on the console. We had no idea, and you just go round and round in conversations that get nowhere. That’s the thing about being a developer. There’s this difficult relationship [with the publisher] that’s unnecessary, and I find that the developers who are doing the best work have the ability to get paid on a regular basis and focus on what they’re doing – and that’s the beauty of doing a Kickstarter project.

“Because I can tell you as an executive of a company, you are spending 30-100 % of your time worrying about keeping all your guys employed. So what’s next? Pitches, production, everything takes 6-9 months. So when you half way through developing one, game you are already pitching another product. You are not spending all of your energy just focusing on the game – whereas with Wasteland and Torment all I am doing is worrying about the game. This allows me to make a better game. It sounds simple, but it’s a very important dynamic.”

Plus, with Kickstarter, the project’s backers are basically not only investors, but they can also be considered the publishers: this makes for a much more understanding and flexible “boss” if you will.

“The dynamic with the people who donate is much different [than working with investors], ” said Fargo. “Like with Wastelands 2, they were asking ‘when are we going to see the demo?’ It ended up being about four weeks later than planned, and they were like ‘no problem’. We delivered and everyone was happy.

“There also wasn’t the threat of: ‘if you don’t deliver the demo you don’t get paid.’ It’s a great dynamic. I could not be happier about being in a position to where the consumer who wants the game is also the one who helped fund the game. 100% of our interests are in line. I could not be happier.”

Big thanks to The_Red for reminding me to ask Fargo about HEI$T.

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9 Comments

  1. Brenna Hillier

    You’d think answering to 70,000 fans would be harder than a couple of suits at a publisher, since gamers have a reputation for being outspoken and, let’s face it, kind of reactionary. It’s interesting that Fargo’s paying public is a kinder and more engaged audience than the people who are supposed to know what we actually want from games.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Old MacDonald

    A good read. I like this kind of article. Looking forward to both Wasteland 2 and Torment. I only backed Wasteland 2, because while I get their reasons for doing another Kickstarter so soon, I personally want to see the result of my first pledge before considering if this is a developer I want to back again.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. sh4dow

    Big surprise… the fans collectively take the risk and they don’t get a cut in return, just the game and other goodies that cost comparatively little.

    But once there are a couple of disappointing games and people will wonder what the hell they spent their money on, things will probably change.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. DSB

    @1 Are they really? I’ve backed a lot of stuff left, right and center, and it seems to me like there’s always a group of people who are complaining and expecting too much no matter what you do. Like 15 bucks means you get to approve everything over the course of development.

    That’s the problem with the whole public side of it I guess.

    It is incredibly weird that everybody’s looking to Fargo as an icon though. Firstly because he’s all “gamer power” now, when he originally killed Interplay by going public. Secondly because inXile is synonymous with abject mediocrity.

    Have you played Choplifter HD guys? Play that, and then consider the wisdom of giving the man 5 dollars to make anything.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Jerykk

    @3

    Don’t get a cut? Your cut is whatever reward you chose when you pledged. You act like you’ve invested millions into the company or something. Pledging to a Kickstarter is very much like pre-ordering a game. You are giving away your money based on faith and the hope that you’ll get a good game in return. There are no guarantees and you agree to that risk when you give your money.

    @4

    Fargo was also the one who helped greenlight classic games like Earthworm Jim, Sacrifice, MDK, Giants, Baldur’s Gate, Planescape Torment, Icewind Dale, etc. Interplay was already dying when he decided to take it public. That’s the whole reason he took it public. Sadly, making unique and niche games isn’t enough to sustain a big publisher which is why Fargo left Interplay and is now doing Kickstarter.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. DSB

    @6 So you’d give an executive money to develop a game based on the games he’s greenlit during his time as CEO? Doesn’t make a bit of sense to me.

    I find it a lot more interesting to look at what he’s done over the last decade, and calling that mediocrity is absolutely being courteous about it.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. BrianFargo

    I must say in my defense I do a lot more than greenlight projects. But its worth keeping in mind that the process of development is far more interactive than in years past and we will be working in tight conjunction with the gamers long before it is done. Back in the day we had to keep our fingers crossed that we nailed the right elements but this new transparency removes that variable. So yes it is true that working with the fans put our goals more in line than a publisher/investor who may have different pressures such as making a financial quarter, flipping an investment or badly managing a developer. Trust me when I say that this process is 100% better.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. Sini

    Good for you man, bet you wake up in the morning with more vigor working on games you have passion for, than when you were working on games just to keep afloat the company.
    I bet if there was no pc piracy you could pull double or more for these kickstarters too, but what can you do.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. sh4dow

    @5: What are you talking about? I mean a cut of the earnings! Publishers (which are the fans in the case of Kickstarter) who invest in games usually get the biggest percentage of the money a game makes!

    #9 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

  • Dying Light takes UK number one

    A month since it was released on digital platforms, Dying Light’s physical release has topped the UK charts. Techland and Warner’s zombie survival game has proven to be one of the big hits of the year so far. It was released on digital formats a month ago but has only just been released on good-old […]

  • GTA 5: that’s some seriously accurate grenade throwing

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Destiny: it is possible to solo the Weekly Heroic

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

  • Clayfighter remaster on the way, says Interplay

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

  • The quickest way to climb in Dying Light

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

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

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

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

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

  • Sonic console games will continue, says Iizuka

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

  • Stealth Inc. 2 coming to PSN, apparently

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

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

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

  • Destiny PvP rewards system to be addressed

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

  • Azure Striker Gunvolt 2 in the works for 3DS

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

  • Life is Strange Episode 2 not delayed, says developer

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

  • First SteamVR game reveal is Job Simulator

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

  • HTC, Valve partner for Vive VR headset

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

  • Watch the Evolve Chappie Challenge tomorrow on Twitch

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Underworld Ascendant surpasses Kickstarter goal

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

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

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

  • Online servers for Ridge Racer Unbounded shut down in Europe

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

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

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

  • Darkbeast electrifies latest Bloodborne video

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

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

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

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

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

  • New GTA 5 PC screens – shit the bed!

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

  • Sony Japan accidentally erases 20th Anniversary PS4 contest entries

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

  • Hearthstone datamine suggests Blackrock Mountain expansion on the way

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • War is hell in this Zombie Army Trilogy gameplay trailer

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

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

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

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

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

  • Destiny: Xur location and inventory Feb 27, 28

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

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

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

  • Win Pneuma: Breath of Life for Xbox One

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

  • Life is Strange Episode 2 delayed

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

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

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

  • Halo played by Twitch is an exercise in great patience

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

  • Gold Amiibo sold out, selling at five times RRP on auction sites

    Gold Mario Amiibo are expected to sell for pretty astounding profits on eBay and other auction sites. The Walmart-exclusive Gold Mario Amiibo is already completely sold out. Plenty of people managed to snaffle them to resell, though. There are now dozens of listings on eBay and other auction sites. One of the average asking prices […]

  • Canadian new game prices jump to $75

    Canadian gamers are in for an unpleasant price hike. As spotted by HardcoreGamer, the local Canadian branches of Amazon and EB Games have raised the prices of upcoming games to CAD$75. The CAD$5 increasing comes within a year of prices hitting the CAD$70 point. CAD$75 (£38/€53) currently exchanges for $60, the standard US pricing. The […]

  • New Xenoblade Chronicles X footage shows weather, day-night cycle

    The latest Xenoblade Chronicles X footage shows off a gloriously beautiful world. Xenoblade Chronicles X is Monolith Soft’s first solo Wii U game, and the developer is clearly enjoying being able to build a big open world with all the features we’ve come to expect. Missed the whole Xenoblade thing? Chronicles X is a sort […]

  • Dead Rising: Watchtower teaser talks up the benefits of Zombrex

    Live-action Dead Rising movie Watchtower is almost upon us. Dead Rising: Watchtower will release on Crackle on March 27, and via other digital distributors thereafter. Enjoy the short teaser below, courtesy of IGN.