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Soul Sacrifice: can it help Sony sell Vita?

Tuesday, 30 April 2013 08:05 GMT By Dave Cook

Soul Sacrifice is out today in the States. Dave Cook plays the final PS Vita code and asks whether or not it’s the system seller Sony’s handheld has been crying out for.

Soul Sacrifice

Developed by Sony Japan Studio, Soul Sacrifice was conceptualised and designed by ex-Capcom designer Keiji Inafune.

The game is a PS Vita-exclusive and launches today, April 30 across North America, and from May 3 across Europe.

Soul Sacrifice will include a post-launch run of free and paid DLC. We reported on the first pack due to hit Japan here.

The European edition features a reversible cover, and you can see both designs right here.

Sony has needed a game like Soul Sacrifice on PS Vita for some time.

There has been severe drought of full price games on the handheld worth your time or money. The killer IP simply hasn’t been there, but thanks to Keiji Inafune’s superb effort you now have a reason to return.

Before I got to try the game for myself I often described it to people as “Monster Hunter meets Dark Souls”. While it bears many aesthetic and mechanical similarities to both franchises, slotting it so neatly into another game’s shoes is to do it a grave disservice.

That’s because it’s wildly inventive, fits snugly into the portable mind-set, and offers content spanning hundreds of hours to digest at your leisure. But will it actually manage to shift PS Vita consoles for Sony at a time where it really needs to, well, shift consoles?

This all depends on you.

See, as I pointed out in my Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate ‘A Noob’s Journey’ blog series, games with large worlds and complex mechanics can prove intimidating, and yes, Soul Sacrifice is both massive and complicated at the outset.

I’m aware that Inafune wasn’t director on the Monster Hunter series while at Capcom, but Soul Sacrifice also has potential to hit newcomers with a similar wall of information and mechanics that feel intimidating at the start. After the first hour you’ll be absolutely fine though, thanks to the bite-sized nature of missions and the ability to retry them as you see fit, just like Monster Hunter.

Soul Sacrifice opens with your character locked in a cage, awaiting death at the hands of the mysterious Magusar. You find a living book called Librom under a pile of bones, and by reading its pages you can piece together the past of fallen mages, then claim their power for yourself. Once strong enough you can fight your captor and escape the prison.

Each mission is short, and tasks you with battling a range of ferocious beasts in exchange for items, sometimes alongside AI companions. Afterwards you can choose to go to the next chapter, kit out your character and allies, or read previous chapters again to farm items. Again, all of this is very similar to Monster Hunter in how it handles.

But where Soul Sacrifice deviates from Capcom’s series is that items aren’t used for crafting, or sold in stores. Instead, they are used as ‘offerings’ by your mage and turned into devastating weapons. Confused? Yep, I was as well when I first started playing, but I’ll try my best to break it down.

Your mage has two sets of three item slots, almost like load-outs in a shooter. Let’s say you have five ‘Swordsman Icebrand’ items – which are essentially icy shards – you can offer these in battle to summon a frozen blade that lets your mage unleash fast, elemental swords strikes.

Over time the spell will wear off, leaving you weapon-less, so then you might offer up an Iron Pinwheel instead, giving you a set of ethereal, spinning blades to hurl at enemies from a distance. Healing Seeds can be turned into a health spell, while Sanguine Salvos essentially turn your hand into a machine gun, and so on.

So basically you’re sacrificing items to create weapons for a short time. However, if you farm enough of the same item, they can be combined to create weapons that stick around for longer, hit harder and can be summoned more times in one stage. Grinding enough items to make top tier weapons, shields or spells can take ages though, and might put some people off.

The theme of offering sacrifices goes even deeper though, as each demonic enemy you face is actually something less fearful underneath. Giant diseased rats are actually a mutated swarm of smaller, harmless rodents for example.

In one boss battle you face off against a giant Harpy, which in reality is a possessed woman underneath. Once defeated its up to you to pass judgement on her by saving or sacrificing her soul. The former will give you health and go towards levelling up your life bar, while the latter will boost and level up your magic power.

The choice of redeeming or sacrificing the souls of enemies makes for a neat levelling mechanic, and in some cases your choice can come back to either bite or aid you later on in the game. Then there’s the ‘Black Rite’ system, which becomes available whenever your mage is close to death.

The first Black Rite unlocked sees your mage sacrificing their own skin to turn them into a bloody, walking fireball in exchange for half of your defence stat. So not only are you stripping off your character’s skin in exchange for immense power, you are also severely weakened against attacks.

You can repair your body using a substance called Lacrima that is secreted from Librom’s eye every so often. Don’t call them tears though, he doesn’t like that one bit. Given how infrequently the liquid appears as you progress further, you may be at a disadvantage for some time. There’s always a tangible trade-off at play.

Disturbingly, you can also sacrifice your eyes and suffer a dampened cone of vision, and even carve sigils into your right arm that bestow your mage with a wide range of stat buffs and long-term effects. Useful yes, but again, you’re still giving up your character’s body in exchange for power.

Sacrifice, balance, loss and redemption are all themes that not only work their way into the game’s harrowing plot, but into the game’s combat and progression mechanics too. You’re made aware from the start that eventually, all mages have to pay a terrible price for the ability to wield magic.

It’s both sinister and challenging, which is where the Dark Souls references come into play. Although it’s not as brutal as From Software’s gauntlet, Soul Sacrifice does have a similar tone and art direction. You get the feeling all the way through that something dark lurks beneath the cracks, and that no matter what you do your character is doomed from the start.

But this is the big question throughout. Will you beat the odds of all the fallen sorcerers that sacrificed their lives, bodies and sanity before, only to escape Magusar’s prison, or will you end up a warped husk, contorted and mutilated by magical power?

I haven’t finished it so I don’t know yet, but I can tell you this, the question is driving me on happily. So to this end will Soul Sacrifice help shift PS Vita consoles for Sony? Well, it’s a hardcore game in many respects, but much like Ni No Kuni and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate 3 before it, this could be considered a gateway drug to the RPG genre, given its action focus.

I think first impressions will see many PS Vita owners writing Soul Sacrifice off as either too dark, hardcore or ‘Japanese’ for them to stomach, and to those people I’d recommend trying the demo first. You have nothing to lose, and potentially a lot to gain.

To those who don’t own a PS Vita already, if you like deep RPGs, Dark Souls, or Monster Hunter then I’d say that you may want to buy a console to experience it for yourself, or try a friend’s copy first if you can. I genuinely feel like this is the first Vita game in a long time to get me properly hooked and invested.

The concern is that it’s not ‘mainstream’ enough to see PS Vita sales rocket across the board, but I think a small, dedicated pool of gamers are going to find a new addiction this summer, and one they might not be able to shake until the next generation comes knocking. It’s seriously that big, refreshing and worthwhile.

Now then, what do you think based on what you’ve seen so far? Let us know below.

Disclosure: To assist in writing this article Sony sent Dave a copy of Soul Sacrifice on PS Vita. No merchandise or advertising was offered or accepted.

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31 Comments

  1. Lengendaryboss

    Impressive Read Dave although unfortunately i think this game’s fate is sealed as amazing as the demo is its just that i don’t see a big success for this game, which is really sad.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Dave Cook

    @1 that’s how I feel too. I want it to do very well, but it’s perhaps too niche to warrant major success. If it wasn’t for me still working on my new flat I’d be playing it right now.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. SameeR_Fisher

    Pretty cool Dave, it seems like a great game, a shame that I don’t have a Vita

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Dave Cook

    @3 that’s the key problem isn’t it? Such a barrier to a potentially wide audience. I’d love to see a PS3 port.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Lengendaryboss

    @Dave
    Thus killing reasons to get a PS Vita. But i would love to see an open world sequel on PS3 and PS Vita, that will definitely show potential.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. redwood

    impressive read man!!! :) I don’t have psV but will get sS when i get it..

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Dragon246

    @LB,
    Open world doesn’t really work well in these games imo, since anyways everyone will make a beeline to the enemy, so MH or GE like big arenas are mostly a waste of resources.

    About sales, I don’t think even Sony is expecting much from western sales, neither will it attract a significant audience outside current Vita owners.
    But, mind you, Sony and Inafune are happy with sales, and it is selling very well for a new IP in Japan. Here is an interesting read-
    http://www.siliconera.com/2013/04/29/keiji-inafune-talks-about-soul-sacrifice-kaio-king-of-pirates-and-comcepts-other-projects/

    @Dave,
    Have you tried those 5-10 star boss battles? Games like these are generally even more difficult as many monsters are borderline impossible to defeat solo, in MH and GE.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. friendlydave

    Can not wait for this to arrive on Friday. It looks and sounds great!

    Between this and Dark Arisen I’m glad we get an extra day this weekend :D

    #8 2 years ago
  9. Greek God

    I played the demo already over 35h lol
    And i dont even like MH

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Dragon246

    @9,
    The level 20 cap sucks doesn’t it? :(

    #10 2 years ago
  11. monkeygourmet

    The demo has ‘killed’ this for me… :(

    Far too generous that I can’t justify buying this with all the other games im juggling at the moment!

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Goffee

    Has anyone seen any advertising for this at all outside Sony’s blog (I don’t read PS mags any more but guess there’s some there) – outside of the converted is Sony trying to sell this to anyone?

    Considering year old Virtua Tennis is currently top of the chart, the Vita is pretty much toast in the UK any way.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Greek God

    10@
    agree but atleast we can farm some spells in the demo and fuse them to be ready for the full game :)

    #13 2 years ago
  14. polygem

    @11: haha i had a feeling you didn´t enjoy the demo :)

    i really liked it and cannot wait to play the final build.

    great article. i think a game like this should be a system seller, it has a great concept, great artdirection and some unique ideas while not trying to hard to be different….but unfortunatly…it probably wont help to sell more vitas.

    @LB: i can see this franchise on the ps3 or ps4 as well. sure it needs to be redesigned, opened up more, but it really could be awesome. would also be cool to have a soul sacrifice console game and a vita version too where you can fight more arena styled battles with your full pimped out homeconsole sorcerer!

    #14 2 years ago
  15. jevonski

    I really want to like this game but judging from the demo it’s not for me, it just didn’t flow well for me mind you I’ve never really been a fan of short missions and prefer a more open world approach to games.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. CycloneFox

    I think the biggest problem of this game doesn’t lie with it being a niche-title of some sort. I think it appeals to alot of gamers – especially after Dark Souls big success alot of gamers like this kind of dark artstyle.

    Its biggest problem is something, it shares with Ragnarok Odyssey, MGS Peacewalker or even Monster Hunter: Meeting friends with a Vita/PSP is extremely rare in the west and those games are most fun if you play them ad-hoc in one room. Of course, it is also fun to play a game online, but I for example am the only one in my circle of friends, who has a Vita. So I mostly play SP Vita games. It may be no problem in a year or two (when peacewalker came out a friend of mine bought a PSP and I could finally get in the joy of playing coop games on the PSP), but for a system that still needs to establish itself, it absolutely needs more SP killer IPs. Gravity Rush, Project Diva F and Uncharted did it for me, but I think it needs an RPG like Final Fantasy or even Dark Souls.

    Either way, I think Soul Sacrifice will help to sell the Vita. Add Killzone, localize the two Vita Tales of games and Phantasy Star Online 2 and add a little pricecut and I think it would sell well.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Rosseu

    All region 1 Soul Sacrifice are sold out in stores here. What’s left are region 3s

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Erthazus

    More games like this will make PS Vita a great system. But so far there are 1 or 2 of these at best for one year.

    I don’t know. Sony is in retarded position right now. In my opinion if something like 10 games would be released at one year like Soul Sacrifice… for PS vita. You can bet your ass that PS Vita would be successfull device.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. polygem

    hmm, soul sacrifice, toukiden, tearaway, killzone, god eater2, dragons crown…there are some good titles coming and we´ll probably see some more being announced this e3.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. OlderGamer

    There are a handful of games for the system that have my interest, this one included. But not of them can justify the purchase price. When/if the system price drops, I will buy one. But 300usd for the systm and decent mem cards? No thanks. I would rather save for a PS4 for just 100usd more.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. polygem

    @OG: is it still priced like that in the us? in germany you can get the wifi version brandnew with a game and a 4gb mc for 170 euro at some places. These deals appear and disappear though, goes back to 249 every now and then but if you wait or look around a little you´ll find the 170 euro offer. combined with a game (LBP) and a mc that´s a fair price for that thing imo…wish the mc´s would be much cheaper though.
    too bad mg didn´t enjoy soul sacrifice that much and you don´t have a vita. would have loved to hunt some mosters with you ;)
    somehow the only one i ever played online with from vg247 was manu…just once, cod blops II – i played terrible :)
    it´s a shame really.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. polygem

    …there have been some attempts to get some online Action going on here (max payne, cod?) but i think it never really worked out that well? maybe we need a good coop game…or maybe desitny?

    #22 2 years ago
  23. OlderGamer

    Yeah Gamestop online has two new ones for sale one at 250usd and one for 300usd. And like you said the MC issue. But it is classic. Instead of actualy lowering the price and allowing the buyer to pick the games for a new system, companies like to “Add value” in the box. Yet keeping the price high. The problem is if you can’t drop 300usd on a new system it doesn’t much matter what is in the box, you still don’t have 300usd for a new system.

    And ofc we all know why they do it. But the I think they sell a lot more Vita at 200usd price then a 300usd one. Regaurdless of whats packed in.

    #23 2 years ago
  24. polygem

    absolutely. the system is probably even worth the cash but it still is too expensive if you know what i mean. i wouldn´t pay 250 for it plus 40 for a decent mc plus 15 for a case (you kind of need one) plus 80 for two games…it´s just too expensive. pricecut has to come and it will come – and i think it will come pretty soon.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. jldoom

    I completely agree with everyone speaking about the price. Honestly, I’d rather buy a Wii U for that price than purchase a Vita, it’s just too expensive here in the US at retail price for me to justify this purchase.

    @OlderGamer I have seen some great deals on Craig’s List though of people selling their Vita’s at ridiculously cheap prices like $100 System + Memory card and add another $50 to get two games. This is all though in NYC. My friends have had great success buying / selling through there, but I’m a little bit more on the paranoid side when it comes to buying used.

    #25 2 years ago
  26. Lengendaryboss

    @26
    Just going to say what i said elsewhere, games sell hardware and when proven right price becomes irrelevant. Bunch of games out during christmas period and christmas price cut: You got a success.

    #26 2 years ago
  27. malethief

    Nice little read. I do think it’s unfair to categorize the game in the monster hunter meets dark souls. It only shares a similar art style to dark souls and the combat isn’t anything like monster hunter. It’s the usual 4 player action/rpg style of those games that you can play online with up to three others as well.
    From the demo it seems like the addicting factor is getting higher level skills from crafting the drops. It’s fun but I wouldn’t say it has the punishing difficulty of dark souls or the skills required to master monster hunter. It’s a fun game on it’s own and I can’t wait to see more in a future title. On my way to the store to get the full game now :)

    #27 2 years ago
  28. Eddie Rodrigues

    You guys couldn’t be more wrong, this franchise is, at the words of the great Keiji, “designed specially for the Vita” and frankly it wouldn’t look as amazing on the PS4. I guess they could make the sequel work in the console like a streaming device to a bigger screen, but still you would need the Vita to play…

    I need to grab this game right now, just to see gameplays I already want to spend every cent I have.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. Lengendaryboss

    @Eddie
    No one is saying it should jump to consoles, just that there is a lot potential. Like i said any franchise created for PS Vita should stay on PS Vita.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. ManuOtaku

    I will get this game for sure, and i think it will help the vita but just a little bit, it need more games like this and persona 4, and then it will make this console unavoidable for avid gamers.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. polygem

    @28: i was talking about a sequel or a totally new soul sacrifice game, not this one ported to the ps3. this one is for the vita and should stay on the vita, but soul sacrifice as a new franchise could make an appearance on the ps4 one day and i would embrace that idea – it could be awesome. but for now i am more than happy with what we´ve got.

    Manu+1

    #31 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    GTA 5′s latest mod lets you control the in-game phone with your real-life iPhone. Reddit user Planetleak wanted to see if he would succeed in getting his iPhone to control the phone in GTA 5. He did it and has a video to prove it. It’s not a mod per-se, but it emulates mouse and […]

  • SoulCalibur dev wants to know fans’ favourite characters for “something huge”

    SoulCalibur developers are probably working on a new game, because they’re asking fans to vote on their favourite characters. Project Soul, the longtime developer of the SoulCalibur series is soliciting feedback on fans’ favourite characters. The developer said as much in a post on its Facebook page. “Calling all SoulCalibur Fans! Project Soul would like […]

  • Jason Voorhees doesn’t look out of place in new Mortal Kombat X trailer

    Jason Voorhees comes to Mortal Kombat X starting tomorrow and it’s time to celebrate his arrival. Jason Voorhees, the first DLC character for Mortal Kombat X has been given the trailer treatment. Jason is part of the game’s Kombat Pack, owners of which can start using him tomorrow, May 5. Being an iconic horror character, […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition – Dragonslayer DLC announced, free to all this week

    Dragon Age: Inquisition is getting a multiplayer expansion this week. BioWare has announced that all owners of Dragon Age: Inquisition will receive a new multiplayer expansion, for free. The expansion is called Dragonslayer and it’s centred around fighting dragons, hence the name. Three new playable characters will join the roster as you explore an all-new […]

  • Sonder is still happening, and this is the best news of the week

    Sonder is a really interesting-looking new indie adventure, which I am quite excited to remember exists. We first heard about Sonder in late 2013, when its debut trailer introduced us to a Kamai Media’s ambitious vision. In the intervening months Kamai has been hard at work on its space station management sim slash non-linear narrative […]

  • Twitter axes playable Internet Archive embeds

    The dream has died: Twitter has disabled Internet Archive game embeds. Remember how for a few days you could tweet a link to an a game on the Internet Archive and it was playable direct from that tweet? Well, Twitter has cancelled that. All those tweets now just show links. GamesIndustry suspects it has something […]

  • Lords of the Fallen, Divinity: Original Sin developers will reveal new games at E3 2015

    Lords of the Fallen developer Deck13 and Divinity: Original Sin developer Larian Studios have new projects in the works which will be revealed at E3 2015. Publisher Focus Home Interactive is behind both new games. In a French press release [PDF] spotted by RPG Codex, Focus said it will show off the two unrevealed titles […]

  • Rare game announce expected at E3 2015

    Rare’s new game will be shown off at E3 2015, apparently. Rare hasn’t announced a reveal, and neither has Microsoft, but it looks like the news has slipped out anyway. IGN cites a tweet from Rare creative director Simon Woodroffe in which he says that a new project from Rare designer Gregg Mayles will be […]

  • Batgirl expansion included in $40 Batman: Arkham Knight season pass

    Here’s what you get in the $40 Batman: Arkham Knight season pass. Batman: Arkham Knight’s season pass was announced last week, but apart from the news that it would cost a whopping $40/£33, we didn’t get many details of what it would include. Thankfully, Warner Bros. has since acknowledged the clamour this caused, as players […]

  • Star Wars Day Xbox sale discounts Force Unleashed, Lego games

    Star Wars Day is upon us, and here’s an Xbox sale to mark it. Microsoft is offering discounts on Xbox 360 games to celebrate May 4. From my desk here in Australia the sale is a bit light on content – two Lego games, plus The Force Unleashed and its DLC packs. Your mileage may […]

  • Here’s hoping this tease means we see Mass Effect at E3 2015

    Mass Effect boss Mike Gamble has shared a teaser image, which we’re more than happy to draw speculative conclusions from. The new Mass Effect game in the works at BioWare Edmonton is a mysterious beast. Judging by how long it’s been in development, it feels like we’re about due for a proper reveal, to clear […]

  • Watch almost a whole hour of Wolfenstein: The Old Blood

    Wolfenstein: The Old Blood is almost here. Are you ready for old-school shooter action? Wolfenstein: The Old Blood publisher Bethesda livestreamed almost an hour of the Machine Games shooter recently, and has now uploaded the archive to YouTube. Check it out below: Wolfenstein: The Old Blood launches digitally on PC, PS4 and Xbox One on […]

  • Splatoon lacks voice chat to promote a positive online experience

    Nintendo’s multiplayer game Splatoon will not contain a voice chat option in order to “focus on the positive aspects” of online gaming. Speaking in the latest issue of Edge magazine (thanks, GamesRadar), Splatoon co-director Yusuke Amano said personal experience with negativity in online voice chat was one of the main reasons for excluding the feature. […]

  • D4 on PC: differences from Xbox One version, system specs announced

    D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die – Season 1 is coming to PC, and Access Games has provided a list of features different from the Xbox One version. We’ve pulled most of the changes off the game’s website and posted them below, along with the PC specs. D4 on PC Kinect gesture input controls replaced with […]

  • The Megalodon returns to Battlefield 4 with the latest CTE patch

    The Megalodon Easter Egg in Battlefield 4 may have been removed earlier this year from Naval Strike, but it has since resurfaced on the CTE with the latest patch. I’d make a Jaws reference, but it’s been done to death. The shark is shown in the video on the Paracel Storm map which was where […]

  • Survival horror game Kodoku has a new work-in-progress trailer

    Kodoku, the survival horror title from Carnivore Studio, has a new work-in-progress video available, showing you how the game is coming along. Announced for PlayStation 4 and Vita back in 2013, the game is slated for release sometime this year, and tasks the player with avoiding mythical Japanese ghosts using only magic and stealth. Thanks, […]

  • Current HoloLens prototype has noticeably “tighter” FoV compared to January build

    Microsoft’s augmented reality headset HoloLens is still very much in the prototype stage, according to various reports out of the Build Conference. Microsoft hasn’t discussed technical specs with the press yet as nothing is set in stone, but during a hands-on at Build, Ars Technica noticed the prototypes had a “x86 processor, 2GB RAM, 802.11ac […]

  • Silent Hills petition asking Konami to continue development has over 50,000 signatures

    A petition to save the Silent Hills game has been formed by fans in the hopes Konami will change its mind and bring the collaboration with Guillermo del Toro back from the dead. Konami confirmed on Monday the Silent Hill remake from film director Del Toro and Metal Gear’s Hideo Kojima had been cancelled, but […]

  • Attack on Titan has a US release date, title changed in EU over copyright claim

    Attack on Titan: Humanity in Chains will be released under a different title in Europe, according to the publisher, and while a release date has been set for North America, the same cannot be said for fans across the pond. According to Atlus, a copyright claim in Europe has forced the company to publish the […]

  • Yooka-Laylee meets final Kickstarter Stretch Goal in less than 24 hours

    The Kickstarter for Playtonic’s Yooka-Laylee sailed beyond its final £1 million ($1.5 million) Stretch Goal overnight, which will allow for a simultaneous release on all announced platforms. Once funded, Yooka-Laylee was slated for release on Linux, Mac, PC, PlayStation 4, Wii U, and Xbox One; however, a simultaneous release on all platforms wasn’t guaranteed unless […]

  • Not a Hero will miss its May 7 release date, but not by much

    Not a Hero will miss its May 7 release date, according to an announcement from Roll7. Not to worry though, it’s only by a week. According to the developer, the delay is due to “having undergone super-secret upgrades to crank shit up to 60fps.” The extra week will provide the additional time needed for tweaking […]

  • Assassin’s Creed, The Crew, Far Cry 4, other Ubisoft titles on sale through the Humble Store

    Ubisoft has put a number of its games on sale through the Humble Store. Franchises Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry are on discount as are single release titles. The list of games on sale are below. For pricing in your region, head over to the Humble Store. Anno 2070 Complete Edition Assassin’s Creed 3 Assassin’s […]

  • Payday 2: Repeater rifle, Peacemaker pistol introduced with The Butcher’s Western Pack

    Overkill Software released the 21st DLC pack for Payday 2 yesterday, titled The Butcher’s Western Pack. The pack will run you $4.99/€4.99 and other digital distribution channels. “For our 21st DLC we go back in time to visit the Wild West and the arsenal it was known for,” said the developers. “With it we’re introducing […]

  • The Yooka-Laylee Kickstarter just launched and has already met its funding goal

    Playtonic Games launched the Kickstarter campaign for Yooka-Laylee at 5pm UK, and in just over 30 minutes it already hit its $270,000 funding goal. You can watch the funding counter continue to roll over through the link. Yooka-Laylee is a 3D platformer where the characters use special moves such as Yooka’s tongue grapple and Laylee’s […]

  • Batch of hi-res Persona 5 screenshots released by PlayStation Japan

    A set of screenshots have been released for Persona 5, and while you’ve seen these before in magazines and on the official website, these are high-res versions. Some will even look familiar to those who watched the first gameplay trailer back in February. The shots were posted over on the PlayStation Japan Persona 5 game […]

  • Is Alien: Isolation getting HTC Vive support?

    Placeholder images for SteamVR icons have been found and it looks like there may be support for Alien: Isolation, so if you enjoy soiling yourself, get psyched! NeoGAF members found a thread on Reddit, where a little rooting around in a Steam directory unearthed the images. The list includes both games and apps, and as […]

  • Xbox Live multiplayer is free this weekend on Xbox 360

    Xbox 360 players in all Xbox Live regions can play multiplayer online for free this weekend. If you are a Silver member, this means you are Golden from May 1-3 and can play multiple games online with your buddies. All you have to do is log-in to Xbox Live.

  • Assassin’s Creed actor Michael Fassbender confirms film production starts September

    The Assassin’s Creed movie will start production this fall, actor Michael Fassbender (Prometheus, 300, X-Men:First Class) as confirmed. Speaking with ComingSoon.net, Fassbender said filming will start in September, which is inline with Ubisoft’s announcement in February. The actor will star in the film alongside Oscar-winning actress Marion Cotillard, both reuniting with their MacBeth director Justin […]

  • Eve Online boss states VR won’t be as big as we think next year

    I don’t think I’m the only one who wants VR to hurry up and manifest into a Sword Art Online-esque reality. Unfortunately, the chief executive officer at the studio behind Eve Online doesn’t think that will be happening any time soon. Talking to Venture Beat, Hilmar Veigar Pétursson touched on his excitement at the prospects […]

  • The Last of Us: Left Behind goes standalone in May on PS3, PS4

    Naughty Dog has announced that The Last of US DLC Left Behind will be released as a standalone experience next month. It can be purchased for both PlayStation 3 and PS4 through the PS Store and a two-hour demo of the Factions multiplayer will also be made available. “The Left Behind standalone game will have […]

  • EA’s annual E3 press conference takes place on June 15

    Electronic Arts has announced its annual E3 2015 press conference will take place the day before the show kicks off on June 15. EA, Microsoft, Sony and Ubisoft always hold press events the day before E3 officially starts, so this isn’t any surprise, really. The presser, dubbed “Live to Play”, will last one hour and […]

  • Steam exchange rate mix-up closes down community market

    The Steam community market was buggered up big time today after a mix-up with currency conversion had items selling from practically nothing, to millions of dollars. PC Gamer picked up on the news after a thread on Reddit appeared with screenshots depicting just how silly things were getting over there. The currency exchange rate data […]

  • Britney Spears signs five-year deal with Glu for new mobile game

    Pop star Britney Spears has signed a five-year deal with Glu mobile for a new, untitled game. The mobile game will feature her “voice, likeness, and creative influence,” and is due for release sometime next year. Glu also signed a deal with Katy Perry in February, so expect a game revolving around her to hit […]

  • Large Activision publisher sale on Steam discounts Call of Duty, Prototype, more

    Activision has put the majority of its library on sale through Steam this weekend, and if other titles weren’t included, it could be referred to as a Call of Duty sale. Below are a few standouts. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare – Gold Edition 25% off Call of Duty: Ghosts 67% off Call of Duty: […]

  • The Dota 2 International Compendium is out, second Stretch Goal almost complete

    The International Compendium has been released for Dota 2 with the prize pool sitting at a lovely $1,917,155 as of press time. Valve said over the weekend to expect the International Compendium to drop sometime this week. As with previous years, those who purchase the Compendium can earn rewards by completing challenges, making predictions and by […]

  • If permadeath RTS games are up your alley, check out indie project XO

    The Square Enix Collective showcases projects for a limited time to help drum up community support and potential backers, and RTS title XO from Jumpdrive Studios is worth taking a look at. The teaser trailer is fairly brief, but if you visit the page for XO over at the Square Enix Collective, it’s understandable – […]

  • GTA 5 PC patch disables mods. Here’s how to get them working again

    A new patch for the PC version of GTA 5 was released yesterday and, as it turns out, has wiped the ability to use mods with the game. The wasn’t great news for some players, but YouTuber taltigolt has already figured out how to play the PC version with mods after installing the patch. Matt […]

  • Xbox One ad stealth launches a mysterious Halo 5 competition

    A new Xbox One advert released today isn’t as straightforward as it appears. The trailer has a couple of pretty conspicuous ‘glitches’ throughout, and members of NeoGAF wasted no time in breaking it down. The first item of interest is the screen from the hunt the signal site, which displays an error message when accessed […]

  • Battlefield 4 Jungle map improved with latest update

    DICE LA has updated the Battlefield 4 Jungle map, adding more foliage and a new route. As demonstrated by Westie in the video above, the map now has the kind of foliage you’d expect in the jungle, helping to conceal infantry players. The update also tweaks positions of objective points and has added a concealed […]

  • Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate free DLC pack for May includes Metroid and Mega Man armour

    The May DLC pack for Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate boasts some big ticket items, including Metroid, Street Fighter, and Mega Man gear. This big fat chunk of free DLC, detailed on the capcom unity blog, includes Hunter equipment: Metroid’s Varia Suit Metroid’s Zero Suit Metroid’s Arm Cannon Taiko Drum Master Hunting Horn USJ’s Star Rook […]

  • Destiny: Xur location and inventory for May 1, 2 – Hard Light edition

    Here he comes with his weird face, dealing goods and gear for Guardians. It’s Friday. Xur: Agent of the Nine is back in the Tower. Of Course he is. Got your Strange Coins? Here’s what’s in his bag this week: Ruin Wings [Exotic Titan gauntlets] – 13SC Don’t Touch Me [Exotic Hunter gauntlets] – 13SC […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition Jaws of Hakkon DLC drops for PS4 on May 26

    Dragon Age: Inquisition DLC has now been announced for May 26 for PS3, PS4 and Xbox 360. The announcement was made on Twitter via the official Dragon Age account. Mark your calendars! #DAIJawsOfHakkon pic.twitter.com/mU1WfkSrQV — Dragon Age (@dragonage) May 1, 2015 The DLC was released for PC and Xbox One back in March thanks to […]

  • New Witcher 3 screenshots highlight Geralt’s questionable fashion choices

    Even though The Witcher 3 release date is drawing closer, it still feels like a million year away. So here are some more screenshots to tide you over until then. We got to look at in-game shots yesterday, but these new screens show Geralt riding through some gorgeously vibrant mountains, in the midst of combat […]

  • Sims Gurus patch out pregnant men

    Say goodbye to The Sims 4 unique take on fatherhood, as The Sims Gurus confirm that male pregnancies are no more. The Sims 4 players have been reporting high numbers of alien abductions, leaving their male characters with sore bottoms and a bellyful of alien baby. Kotaku reports that not everyone was getting their knickers […]

  • Black Mesa countdown probably points to Half-life remake release date

    Half-life remake Black Mesa may have a release date at last. Black Mesa is a Source Engine remake of the original Half-life, which like everything related to Half-life feels like it’s taking forever to come out. The first part launched in September 2012, and it looks like we might have a release date for the […]

  • Spector puts down rumours of troubled Epic Mickey development

    Epic Mickey seemed like a surprising follow-up project from the man who made Deus Ex, but Warren Spector has put down rumours of a difficult relationship with Disney. Epic Mickey displays several qualities found in Spector’s other games and which he has always espoused in interviews – heck, this is the man whose dream it […]

  • Ubisoft makes good on Child of Light promise with free eBook

    Child of Light fans can check out a gorgeous new illustrated book set in the world of Lumeria. Earlier this month, creator Patrick Plourde confirmed that there were more Child of Light projects on the way. As we expected from the cagey wording, at least the first of these projects isn’t a game: it’s an […]

  • Half-life episode from Junction Point would have featured a magnet gun

    Half-life seems to be on near permanent hold, but at least we can glean some insight into what might once have been. Junction Point’s cancelled Half-life game came up in Warren Spector’s Reddit AMA overnight. Commenting that he isn’t sure whether he’ll get into legal trouble for discussing the project, Spector gave a few comments […]

  • Destiny: exclusive shader, emblem on offer with Nepal benefit shirt

    Destiny developer Bungie has asked Guardians to offer their aid, and they’ve already responded in troves. A new Destiny shirt added to the Bungie Store is the object of a fundraising drive to provide aid in Nepal following a devastating earthquake this week. Bungie popped the pretty stylish shirt on sale earlier today, offering an […]

  • What does the creator of Deus Ex think of Human Revolution and Mankind Divided?

    Deus Ex creator Warren Spector seems pretty positive about the direction the sci-fi series has followed under Square Enix’s hand. Deus Ex was created by Spector and his team at Ion Storm, and remained with Eidos after the developer shuttered. When Square Enix purchased the British publisher, it put new studio Eidos Montreal to work […]

  • Protest Goat secures future for Elite Dangerous destruction derbies

    One of the stranger and more beautiful stories to manifest in the gaming world this week, I think. Elite: Dangerous has given birth to an unintended, emergent style of gameplay; a destruction derby like affair where players gather in no combat areas to both race and gleefully smash into each other until a victor limps […]

  • Destiny’s stunning landscapes captured in panoramas

    Destiny has some beautiful environments, which screenshots don’t necessarily do justice to. Walking around Destiny exclaiming over the lighting effects and the tiny animated details is the best way to experience Bungie’s tremendous achievements, but these panorama images stitched together from in-game screenshots are a good second. Click to see them fullsize. Redditor CenturyEagle made […]

  • Star Wars Disney Infinity re-release on the cards – rumour

    Star Wars is a no-brainer for Disney Infinity, and at long last it looks like it’s happening. A Star Wars re-release called Disney Infinity 3.0 has reportedly leaked from German retailers. We have to lable this one a rumour as we haven’t seen the original source, but the story was originally reported by DisKingdom, which […]

  • Award-winning mobile indie Monument Valley out now on Windows Phone

    Windows Phone’s game selection can be a bit restrictive, but has expanded delightfully today: Monument Valley is now available. Monument Valley is one of those gorgeous, mind-bending puzzlers the indie scene produces on the regular, winning awards and consuming everyone’s lives for weeks on end. Developed by Ustwo Games, with beautiful, understated art from Ken […]

  • Old-school EverQuest servers safe from legal troubles thanks to Daybreak agreement

    EverQuest rights holder Daybreak Game Company given its blessing to the wonderful Project 1999. EverQuest: Project 1999 is one of those lovely ideas that it are all too often crushed by the realities of the games industry. An entirely fan-managed affair, it provides an emulated version of the classic EverQuest experience, which is no longer […]

  • Free Dragon Age short stories fill us in on Corypheus’s followers

    Dragon Age: Inquisition developer BioWare invites you to learn more about the lore and characters that make up its beautiful role-playing setting. Dragon Age is set in Thedas, a world still only partially revealed by the three core games to date. BioWare puts a heck of a lot of work into its worldbuilding, employing a […]

  • Remember that gorgeous Luminous Engine tech demo? It now utilizes DirectX 12

    Remember the gorgeous Luminous Engine tech demo Square Enix showed off three years ago? The firm showed it again at Microsoft’s Build Conference, this time utilizing DirectX 12. The Witch Chapter 0 [cry] real-time tech demo was created from research Square conducted using real-time CG technology and DX12 in collaboration with Microsoft and Nvidia. The […]

  • Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones sneaks onto GOG and Steam services

    Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones can now be purchased through GOG and Steam. On both services it will run you £12.99/€14.99/$14.99. Links here and here. The game features: Fully explorable ‘Metroidvania’ style overworld, laying siege to a diabolical cloning facility with varied and detailed environments. A variety of special equipment to unlock new […]