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Firefall boss feels MMO developers have “killed a genre” by catering to accessibility over achievement

Saturday, 29 June 2013 17:28 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Red 5 Studios CEO, CCO and former World of Warcraft developer, Mark Kern believes that by making MMOs accessible to causal players, developers have “killed a genre.”

Speaking in a guest blog on MMORPG, the Firefall boss pondered the “cost” of omitting traditional MMORPG systems.

“It all started with the drive to make MMOs, which in the EQ and Ultima days were a niche and hard core game, more accessible,” Kern wrote. “Accessibility was the mantra when I was leading the World of Warcraft team. We labored over the user interface for the game, going through many iterations, to find one that would be easy and intuitive for players new to the genre. We created a massive number of quests to lead the player through the world, making sure that they never had to think about what to do next.

“But even that wasn’t enough. As WoW grew in population, reaching ever more casual gamers, new expansions introduced even more refinements. Quest trackers were added, and xp was increased so that it was easier to level through all the old content to get to the “new stuff” of the expansion. Gear from the a new expansions first quests made raid gear from previous expansions a joke. And the level curve became faster and faster until we reached a point where everyone is just in a race to get to max level, and damn everything else in between. Why care about level 20 gear when you would blow by levels so fast it was obsolete before you even logged off for the night?

“And it worked. Players came in droves, millions of them. But at what cost? Sometimes I look at WoW and think “what have we done?” I think I know. I think we killed a genre.”

Kern said one of the many ways the genre has been “killed” is the sense of achievement players felt when overcoming a difficult quest or mission. When the difficulty curve is lessened, so is the sense of fulfillment.

“When the bar is lowered so that everyone can reach max level quickly, it makes getting to max level the only sense of accomplishment in the game,” he said. “We lose the whole journey in between, a journey that is supposed to feel fun and rewarding on its own. Nobody stops to admire a beautiful zone or listen to story or lore, because there is no time to do so.

“You are fed from a fire-hose of quests that you feel compelled to blaze through, whose content is so easy and quick to accomplish, that you are never in one place long enough to appreciate the incredible world around you. We feel bored by these quests, simply watching numbers on our quest trackers count down to completion before we are fed the next line of quests. And you don’t feel satisfied from playing the game because it never challenged you.

“And since these quests are so easily and quickly accomplished, the developer is not motivated to spend any time creating rich quests or events for players, since they will only be done once and discarded in the blink of an eye. Developers have no choice but to rely on kill 10 rats, fedex or escort for nearly every quest, and to do so with the least amount of work possible, lacking in depth or story. Its simply not worth it to do anything more.”

Kern feels this makes things even worse, as these quests chains become simpler and more cookie-cutter which ultimately causes the “moment to moment gameplay” to suffer.

“As content gets easier in order to appeal to a wider market, it at some point also pushes that market away. We feel bored by the same formula over and over. We never explore the world, having been indoctrinated to just follow a laundry list of tasks,” he said. “It may be great for relaxing and having a fun couple hours of gameplay, but it doesn’t last.

“No wonder we have such a huge crowd of jaded and bored MMO players. Every MMO that follows the WoW formula is a trivial exercise, dominated by rote and convention, trading off the joy of the journey for a series of meaningless tasks. And when we race to the end, we expect some kind of miracle end-game that will keep us playing. It never does.”

It’s an interesting perspective from someone with plenty of MMO development experience, and Kern said with Firefall, the team is concerned about such trappings; therefore, it is focusing on the “journey” instead of end game.

Firefall goes into open beta on July 9, and Founder’s Packs will be available through July 8.

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24 Comments

  1. silkvg247

    Pretty much agree 100%.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. JB

    Same shit, different people.

    Every time a new MMO launches it`s wow bad, casuals bad, new game hard, new game better…

    #2 2 years ago
  3. silkvg247

    Sod it, I’ll give it a go.

    Signed up to founders.. got three beta keys left. Anyone want?

    #3 2 years ago
  4. TheWulf

    Eh. I don’t think that’s true at all. What’s killed MMOs if anything has is a lack of variety. You’re always doing the same thing over and over, ad nauseum. I can’t see Firefall being any different.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. DSB

    Yup, spot on.

    The things that helped to make MMOs become a cultural phenomenon were just slowly dialed back in the hopes that the developers might attract a few casuals, with the end result that the experience just became predictable. The gameplay flatlined and the games themselves reverted to cloning instead of innovating.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Erthazus

    He is correct.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. KineticCalvaria

    Played the beta, it’s a pretty boring game, exactly as JB said it’s same shit different people.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. GwynbleiddiuM

    You wont find me arguing with that. But I’d say this is something that all portions of the industry is suffering from, not just MMOs.

    @TheWulf catering to accessibilty imo is a contributing factor to that lack of variety you mentioned.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. GrimRita

    The world is ready for a decent sandbox mmo. No more generic shit like WoW or their clones.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. TheWulf

    Wow, the elitism is strong with this thread.

    So… if you were to include, say, a puzzle that involves lots of research, riddling, and even real world research, that would be making the game less desirable? And that would make it more “casual?”

    A casual player isn’t one who lacks skill, a casual player is a person who can’t sit in front of their keyboard pressing 1-2-3-2-3-4-5-2-3-1-2 for long stints. A casual player is someone who has enough of a life to not be able to engage in eight-hour long raids, with prerequisites of eighty hours a week played to gain consumables.

    A casual player can beat VVVVVV with barely any lives lost, a feat that would probably turn the most “hardcore” MMORPG player into a dribbling vegetable, because there’s never been difficulty in MMOs, just time investment. WoW is a fine example of this, it’s the very essence of time > skill. If you have enough basement time to get all of that elite armour, then you can just trounce anything.

    So what I frequently find? A casual player is the player who has more actual skill. The casual player is the one with great muscle memory and reflexes. The casual player is the one with the mind logical enough to figure out hard puzzles in adventure games without using walkthroughs. And to be honest? Casual hate smacks of jealousy.

    MMOs are usually what you play if you’re not good enough to play anything else, frankly.

    This is why I said that MMOs need variety. Not to make them more “hardcore,” but to make them more hardcore. Hardcore in the ways that casuals like, hardcore in ways that are challenging to a person’s ability, rather than to just a person’s wallet or time.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. GrimRita

    @10 There was – SWG had all that pre-cu and you’d get a great sense of achievement once you unlocked a skill.

    The diverse skill tree meant that you really didnt know what to expect during moments like pvp, which were fucking awesome. None of this bull shit instant shame hole for warzones,raid,or other generic name to do pvp zone.

    I doubt very much if we will ever see crafting like that again as well.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Hybridpsycho

    @10

    What a load of crap. You obviously have never even played hardcore in an MMO.

    It doesn’t necessarily take up that amount of time if you’re a good player.

    Also what you said about “Time > Skill” about WoW was also untrue (at least in the Burning Crusade).
    The fact that you’re saying that the casual player has more actual skill is just laughable. It’s based on nothing and most likely solely comes from your own time as one not being able to reach the hardcore content.

    Please don’t write anything more on here ;D

    #12 2 years ago
  13. silkvg247

    Games like wow are only partially about skill. You need:

    Pattern recognition
    Reflexes

    Things that aren’t skill but knowhow:

    Speccing to cookie cutter / best spec (google fu)
    Best / fastest way to level up

    See there’s no element of aiming or critical hits on weak spots. Therefore wow isn’t purely skill it’s like 50% skill. The game + your gear decides how hard you hit and whether you miss or not. The only thing you can really control is making sure you run out of the bad places at the right time.. which yes we can argue is skill in terms of a reflex check on the player.

    Then there’s the group mechanism of using the right buffs at the right time when a boss is at a certain percent. Again that isn’t really skill but know how and common sense.

    I don’t think a casual or hardcore wow player can really call themselves skilled, and this is coming from one of the players who killed ragnaros as a faction first (pre achievements, in vanilla) and spent 20 hours a week raiding. I don’t look back and think wow, I was so skilful. I do look back and think God.. I wish wow was that hard then I might still be playing it. The game went downhill once they did stupid things like make world quests all non-elite.. so you couldn’t try take on a 2-3 man mob solo. That was fun for Gods sake, and it felt like you achieved something.

    Wow isn’t the first or only game to suffer from hidden “turn based computer generated number” combat, it merely copied all the mmo’s before it that did exactly the same. But it’s that mechanic that keeps it from ever being a skill based game.

    I played firefall last night and so far I’d say it’s decent. It plays like an FPS with mmo and rpg elements which is fine by me. It’s also fun.. and I’ve died a few times which keeps me interested. I used to die in Wow too, but now to die you’d have to strip your character naked and run through a pack of mobs. Or run a paint by numbers raid and run out of los of healers.

    I do stil crave a difficult mmo (and no my little wow fans, raids aren’t difficult.. not in terms of skill checks anyhow). Not sure how hard firefall will ultimately be, gonna have to play it a lot more first. I suspect it’ll be as difficult as I chose i.e. I can pick harder encounters. Will try that today.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. livewired500

    @10

    Casual == VeryFewGames && (!VeryOften || VeryOften) && (Skill || !Skill)
    // ie. Sports game only once a day. Or mobile/browser game in short bursts

    Core == VeryOften && (ALotOfGames || (VeryFewGames && VeryOften * CrapLoad)) && (Skill || !Skill)

    Hardcore == PaidToPlay && Skill

    #14 2 years ago
  15. DSB

    @13 I think it’s the best example of a team sport in gaming. I don’t see any other game demanding 20-40 people work together as a coordinated unit.

    There are plenty of games that could, but most developers are intimidated at the thought of putting that kind of demand on people, and really, Blizzard wussed out as well.

    You can always wax lyrical on how “difficult” a game is, but it’s pretty much a law of nature that having 20 people work together as a coordinated unit constitutes a serious challenge. Most professional sports teams are a lot smaller than that.

    I think that’s ultimately also why a raiding guild becomes such a tight knit community, to the point of real life interaction. Everybody’s so focused on doing their best, not just for their own sake, but for their guildmates.

    For me that was the difference between a “good” raider and a “bad” raider. A bad raider could have the highest HPS, DPS or TPS in the world, but if he didn’t care about the team and he only thought about himself, then he would always be worth less than the team player.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. silkvg247

    @15 But the raid encounters themselves don’t need “skill” other than reflex checks (go to y when x happens). No aiming, no real strategy.

    I agree it’s difficult to coordinate 20+ people but that’s more to do with logistics than the actual challenge of the game.

    The last time I played in a skill based team game was q2ctf.. you needed team coordination and excellent hand/eye coordination skills – not to mention going against human opponent is always going to be a bigger challenge than AI.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. DSB

    @16 I think that depends on your definition of skill.

    “Skill: An ability and capacity acquired through deliberate, systematic, and sustained effort to smoothly and adaptively carryout complex activities”

    I think that can be applied to what you do during a raid. You have your assignment as healing, DPS or tank, and that’s usually pretty straight forward, but your ability to adapt, perform and do it consistently is what determines whether you kill a boss or not.

    The actual execution of that definitely takes skill in my opinion. But at the end of the day I think it’s a pretty useless measure of a game, and I think TheWulf is grasping for straws as per usual. The vast majority of games are pretty banal at the end of the day, and few teach you anything worth naming a skill.

    Counter-Strike is “running around shooting guys in the head” and Starcraft 2 is just “building stuff in sequence and clicking the map really fast”, and while both statements are true, the reality is a bit more detailed.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. silkvg247

    @17 Maybe this will sound egotistical but I don’t find a single aspect of wow raiding difficult and that’s why I struggle to label it as skilful. Every single raid wipe I’ve been involved in has been down to other players being unable to follow simple encounter mechanics. Iv’e tanked, I’ve healed, I’ve done lots of different dps.

    I feel bored constantly during every single encounter, it’s why I stopped playing. To me wow raids are like.. an impromptu outdoor basic dance class. 20-40 people stood there, and an instructor going through one simple movement at a time whilst the others try and follow in sync. If one fucks up, they all have to start again, and frustratingly the only thing we’re being asked to do is clap, double clap and hop albeit in a rhythm.

    Wow encounters would become skill based if the fights became more about position and aim and dodging (also timed parries and blocks) than gear and pattern following. Like I said, I’ll agree there is some skill, but I’d say less skill than any action/real-time combat game.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. DSB

    @18 That wasn’t my experience. Farming is business as usual, but progress raiding was never a linear experience, and there were always random events that needed handling, whether it was a random attack falling in a bad place, or at a bad time, or just people screwing up like you said.

    The dance class aspect is true for any team sport. If every footballer was at the right place at the right time, doing the right thing, then obviously you’d have a league of nothing but successful teams, but the reality involved in making that happen is a lot more complicated.

    Penny Arcade made the same connection between MMOs and American football, and being someone who likes both I think it’s dead on.

    At least in my time with WoW, it was pretty obvious from watching their recordings that the guilds who fought for the top spot were just that much better than everybody else.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. silkvg247

    @19 Sports aren’t set in stone, raid encounters are. Learn what the boss will do and when, and how to react, and then he is on farm status. You can’t do that vs. other human beings.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. DSB

    @20 Sports are certainly more dynamic, but there are only so many ways to play them, and most team sports are highly dependent on communication/coordination and improvisation.

    Some bosses were easier than others, we would often refer to some as “retard checks” – and boss timers take some of the sport out of it – but on a boss like Archimonde for example, there were still lots of random factors that would challenge a raid.

    Doomfire might cut off ranged or melee DPS, or it might force healers to move out of range of their targets, and in those situations everyone had to adapt and improvise. I’d say the difference between those who did and those who didn’t was skill.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. jaacfour

    #3 silkvg247 I’ll take a firefall beta key if you have any left. jaacfour@gmail.com.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. klepp0906

    I hate fucking laptops. lost a 4 paragraph response. FUUUUUUUCK!

    anyhow LONG story short. He is right, blizzard got greedy and ruined an entire genre. I have said it for years but now it comes straight from the horses mouth.

    the only people who will deny or argue this are the wow kiddies themselves. Cant blame them though, they are ignorant when it comes to a real MMO and they have an entitlement complex that wouldn’t allow them to last long in one anyhow.

    I now understand why old people hate kids. Sad state of affairs when a 30 y/o feels that way about kids just 10 years his jr.

    #23 1 year ago
  24. klepp0906

    now that ive actually read the blog. Mr kern, you hit the nail on the head. Perhaps if more of your colleagues hopped off the bandwagon and admit they saw it your way, the genre could be salvaged. alas good luck getting a business to look away from the almighty dollar.

    Analogy? the Nintendo wii. It did amazingly wel and it was awful. SAME EXACT THING.

    #24 1 year ago

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    Sony will be ending service for Destiny of Spirits starting next month, Sony has announced. The free-to-play Destiny of Spirits was released in late March 2014 on Vita, and tasked players with collecting supernatural forces appropriate to their geographical location, and then trading them with others online. Gravity Rush spirits were added to the game […]

  • MotoGP 15 is out this spring on PC, last and current-gen consoles

    MotoGP 15 will be released in June on PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, Milestone has announced. Bike, rider and team customization are part of the latest release in the franchise, along with time-trials and enhanced career options. The game features over 20 bike models divided into three classes: MotoGP, Moto 2 […]

  • Cities: Skylines players should check out Nakatomi Plaza and Wayne Enterprises

    Nakatomi Plaza and Wayne Enterprises can now be yours in Cities: Skylines. Die Hard fans will be familiar with Nakatomi Plaza. Those who have never watched the first film and live in Los Angeles know it by its real-life name, FOX Plaza. It was created by Enos Shenk and is available through Steamworks. Those who […]

  • Call of Duty franchise has sold 175M copies, players have thrown 300B grenades

    With the Call of Duty Championship kicking off tomorrow, Activision has sent over a series infographic full of interesting figures such as the number of copies sold over 10 years and how many grenades players have tossed. According to the stats below, the Call of Duty franchise has sold 175 million copies across all platforms […]

  • Save up to 75% on select SEGA games on Steam this weekend

    SEGA has put many of its games on sale through Steam this weekend and the firm has also announced Eastside Hockey Manager is now available through Early Access. The sale runs through March 30. The entire Total War, Company of Heroes and Dawn of War back catalogs are discounted 75% and all associated DLC is […]

  • Batman: Arkham Knight PC confirmed as digital download-only in UK

    Batman: Arkham Knight will indeed be a download-only title on PC in the UK, Warner Bros. has confirmed to VG247. Batman: Arkham Knight will be available as both a physical and digital release for PS4, Xbox One and PC in North America and Europe. Again, in the UK, the PC version will be “available as […]

  • Rainbow Six Siege release date set for October per GameStop Italy – report

    GameStop Italy may have let the release date for Rainbow Six Siege slip if a recent listing is accurate. According to the listing, the game will release on October 16. While this could be a placeholder date, October 16 is a Friday in the UK, the usual day new releases land at retail. The release […]

  • Watch the $1 million Call of Duty Championship right here

    The The Call of Duty Championship takes place this weekend, and you can watch all the action as it unfolds right here. The event takes place in Los Angeles tomorrow March 27 and runs through March 29, and the livestreams are below. 32 teams from five continents and 11 countries will be competing in Call […]

  • Battlefield Hardline: Battlefest kicks off this weekend with Double XP

    A new season of Battlefest kicks off this weekend, and starting today, you will earn Double XP in Battlefield Hardline. Battlefest for Hardline is similar to the event held for Battlefield 4 last year. For the entire month of April and into May, in-game events and competitions will be held by the developers and player […]

  • Don’t forget: the GTA 5 PC pre-order bonus cutoff is March 31

    Just a friendly reminder to those planning on purchasing GTA 5 for PC: you have until March 31 to pre-order if you want all the bonuses on offer. Those who pre-order will be handed $1 million in-game cash plus a bonus $300,000. It is split between GTA 5 and GTA Online: $500,000 for Grand Theft […]

  • Games with Gold offers doubled for April – six games instead of three

    Microsoft’s April Games with Gold collection is being doubled. For the month Xbox Live Gold members will receive six instead of three games free. Here’s what’s on offer: Pool Nation FX: Available all month on Xbox One Child of Light: Available all month on Xbox One Gears of War: Judgment: Available from April 1-15 on […]

  • Pokemon players can grab a code for Shiny Charizard at GAME in April

    Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire players along with Pokemon X and Y owners can grab a free, rare Shiny Charizard from April 3 at one of GAME’s 320 stores in the UK. The redeemable codes for the character will be made available upon request and no purchase is necessary. Those who pop into one […]

  • F1 2015 will arrive on PC, PS4 and Xbox One in June, includes Mexico circuit

    Codemasters has announced its F1 franchise will make its series debut on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One this June with the release of F1 2015. The game was developed using a new engine and contains improved handling and physics for all vehicles and parts attached. This includes: engine, transmission, aerodynamics, fuel tank, force feedback, suspension […]

  • Mortal Kombat X video confirms Liu Kang as playable character

    Liu Kang has been confirmed as a playable character in Mortal Kombat X in the latest video. You’ll also notice Bo’ Rai Cho in there as well. In the Shaolin trailer above you also get a look at Kung Lao and Kung Jin who is new to the series. Apparently, Raiden’s past champions of the […]

  • Short teaser for Star Wars: Battlefront shows the Battle of Hoth

    A short teaser for Star Wars: Battlefront has been posted by EA on Twitter. Well, that speeder isn't going anywhere. Can someone give us a lift to @SW_Celebration http://t.co/srEVrAA0zl #SWCA https://t.co/4W4LG8myke — EAStarWars (@EAStarWars) March 25, 2015 The teaser shows vehicles which we could be using in the game, but it mainly shows the snowy landscape […]

  • Pillars of Eternity releases today – get all the review scores here

    Pillars of Eternity, which still stands as the second most-funded video game on Kickstarter, finally releases today. It’s also getting some rather positive reviews scores, which we’ve rounded up for you. The isometric, party-based RPG from Obsidian Entertainment was one of the first video game projects to take to Kickstarter, and hit its $1.1 million […]

  • Take an in-depth look at Evolve’s Behemoth monster and four new hunters

    Evolve’s fourth monster, the Behemoth, as well as the four new hunters are shown off in new gameplay video. Evolve’s latest gameplay trailer gives everyone a good look at each of the four new hunters and the massive Behemoth monster. The hunters can be bought either separately or though the hunting pass, while the monster […]

  • PS4 firmware update 2.50 causing issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall

    The suspend/resume feature in PlayStation 4′s 2.50 firmware update is causing some issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall. Killzone: Shadow Fall developer Guerrilla has said that the game is experiencing some issues in some instance where the suspend/resume feature is used. The timing of when players put the game in suspend mode does have an effect, […]

  • Bungie on Destiny matchmaking: “We believe there’s no substitute for a pre-made team”

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

  • Bloodborne works with suspend/resume, but only offline

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Bloodborne: you can add gestures to your messages

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

  • PlayStation 4 firmware update 2.50 is now live

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

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

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

  • Bloodborne Vicar Amelia summon mystery solved

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

  • Steven Spielberg will direct film adaption of Ready Player One

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Bloodborne players are already documenting their crazy antics

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

  • FIFA Ultimate Team celebrates sixth year in existence with giveaways

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

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

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

  • SteamWorld Dig Xbox One release expected in late May

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Kojima Station show suspended

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

  • Watch Battle Royale for free this weekend on Xbox Live

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Bloodborne issue prevents summons at Vicar Amelia fight

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

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

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