New Shadow of Mordor Trailer, Release Date Announced

Mordor

Monolith Productions has a new Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor trailer for your viewing pleasure.

The new trailer, titled Banished From Death, details some of the backstory of Talion, an undead ranger with wraith-like abilities.

After the exceedingly impressive reveal of Shadow of it, I’ve been itching for a new peak at the game. Despite a cliched backstory, this trailer still makes me excited to get into the boots of Talion.

Here is the trailer:

While most LOTR games have followed the canon of the books, Shadow of Mordor is the first in the long running Lord of the Rings franchise to deviate. It crafts a tale that fits nicely between The Hobbit and LOTR, giving them lots of room to create a rich experience.

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor comes out on October 7, for PC, PS4, Xbox One and current-gen systems.

Assassin’s Creed: City Of Angels Announced

When Ubisoft released the first details on Assassin’s Creed: Unity, they also teased that there would in fact be a second AC title on the horizon. Because I am clearly the nexus of all things press, Ubisoft begged me to take information and grace the world with what they have coming.

That said, only a few vague details were given from their press release.

“Assassin’s Creed: City Of Angels has you playing the titular character D’Shaun Jackson in Los Angeles. Scale buildings, take part in turf wars and build your reputation as the king of LA.”

What’s more, they added details pertaining to the gameplay. From holding your gun sideways for increased accuracy, to using your tricked out ride to stealthily run over rival gangstas, AC: City Of Angels promises a definitive change in formula.

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Not representative of the final product

This is starting to sound like a Grand Theft Auto clone, but I will have to reserve judgement until the first trailer is revealed.

Watch Dogs: World Size and Combat Mechanics Unveiled

Dogs

Ubisoft’s Creative Director, Jonathan Morin has unveiled more information about Watch Dogs. This time the spotlight goes for combat mechanics, including enemies, skills and world size. Despite being April Fool’s Day, the details seem to be solid and accurate.

When questioned about Watch Dogs world map size, Morin clarified that the general map is undoubtedly big but the most important is not the size but the quality of the game:

@Jonathan Morin: Its big but Im not into the scale war. Scale for scale is pointless. More interested in the dept/density for a game like WD.

Until now, very few has been officially said regarding enemies and their difficulty. However, Morin advanced today that normal foes are quite easy to take down and they won’t survive more than three bullets at normal circumstances:

@Jonathan Morin: Normal foes die very fast (2-3 bullets if no headshot). But lets just say mean mother****** are better protected. 😉

As expected, elite enemies and bosses will require deeper strategies and combat mechanics. But in Watch Dogs, players will have plenty of freedom to choose their own tactical approaches. It’s true that most videos and trailers show a direct approach but that doesn’t mean that other tactics do not exist. In fact, Morin explained that stealth tactics will be one of the many possibilities, as players can sneaky hack and blow up things without being uncovered:

@Jonathan Morin: Yep, you can even blow stuff up through hacking without being detected.

League of Legends: Riot’s April Fools Day Prank is a Tremendous Success

April Fools Day

Riot Games has launched a very fierce April Fools Day prank featuring a new game mode, Ultra Rapid Fire, followed by hilarious patch notes. Players’ response through social media indicate that this measure is nothing but a tremendous success. In fact, there’s even petitions to keep this mode in-game and to include it on the upcoming All Stars tournament.

League of Legends Ultra Rapid FireThis mode is a casual and fun way to experience Summoner’s Rift, since players get a bunch of unique bonuses regarding combat mechanics – ability’s cool down reduction is set to 80%, mana and energy costs have been abolished and ranged champions have now double attack speed. But there’s even more bonuses, as you can see in the in-game Buff of Awesomely Awesome Buffing. To balance and make this mode playable, Riot Games was forced to make several individual adjustments such as Teemo’s mushrooms, limited to twenty at a time. Check the official trailer:

League of Legends Ultra Rapid FireLeague of Legends’ official Facebook and Twitter pages are flooded with positive feedback regarding this unexpected surprise. In Reddit, things go beyond simple comments, as players demand the inclusion of this mode in the permanent gameplay options. Furthermore, Riot has launched a fun contest challenging players to choose between Team Ryze and Team Tryndamere, both symbolized by the company’s co-founders, Brandon Beck and Marc Merrill respectively. This week’s free champions are only two, therefore the dilema – Ryze of Tryndamere?

Final Fantasy VII Remake Finally Happening

Final Fantasy

Remember that Final Fantasy VII tech demo at E3 2005? The one that showed off the hardware capabilities of the PS3? I sure don’t. But if I did, I’m sure I’d have theorized that it was in fact an early teaser for an actual Final Fantasy VII remake. The best part about this news is that precious child Simon would be right.

Since I am in fact a future version of him, (spoiler alert) I’d also be right, And that’s awesome possum.

konata thumbs up
Accurate rendition of child SImon

Square Enix has finally released details to a few sources (I’m just that special) that Final Fantasy VII will be properly remade for the PS4 and Xbox One. With the news that Square has realized the potential for JRPGs, it’s not surprising that they’d like to hit the gold mine with the most popular FF title to date. However, it does seem a bit abrupt considering they only just announced their refocus.

Inside sources including President Obama and Skynet tell me that we will be getting our first teaser for the upcoming mammoth in a fortnight or less; Stay tuned for extensive coverage.

In the meantime, I’ve got a Reunion to get to.

The Elder Scrolls Online: Early Access Begins Today

The Elder Scrolls Online will release next friday, April 4th, but the early access kicks off today for the the digital Imperial and Standard Edition pre-purchases. Furthermore, the physical pre-orders will have access to the servers on April 1st and assure their three-day head start bonus, as Bethesda stated:

The three-day early access bonus that comes with pre-ordering the Physical or Digital Standard Edition of The Elder Scrolls Online from one of our participating retailer will begin on April 1, 2014.

Pre-orders are still available but the head start bonus is not longer accessible. The servers will launch early in the morning in the United States and late in the evening in Oceania. Check the five-day and three-day early access schedules for different zones.

Five-day early access bonus schedule:

North America (East): 7:00 AM EDT, Sunday March 30th
Central Europe: 1:00 PM CEST, Sunday March 30th
Sydney, Australia: 10:00 PM AEDT, Sunday March 30th

Three-day early access bonus schedule:

North America (East): 7:00 AM EDT, Tuesday April 1st
Central Europe: 1:00 PM CEST, Tuesday April 1st
Sydney, Australia: 10:00 PM AEDT, Tuesday April 1st

For more information about the early access schedules check the official news.

Sony Releases List of All 2014 PS4 Titles

Sony

Earlier today, Sony released a post on their official US blog that lists every single game coming out for the PS4 in 2014; a very informative and useful guide for PS4 owners.

Taking a gander at their post, it’s quite clear that the PS4 has a great line-up for the year. Showstoppers like The Order 1886 and Destiny, indie gems like The Witness and Child of Light, and surprise hits like The Evil Within and The Division all suggest that the PS4 was a wise choice. It’s finally worth noting that this list will change throughout the year, as more games are announced and dates are solidified.

What games have you the most excited to be a PS4 early adopter?

Dragon Age Inquisition: Alistair’s Return Confirmed

Dragon Age

Dragon Age Inquisition will count with another old character from the previous games, Alistair, the famous king of Ferelden. BioWare published today several images of Steve Valentine, Alistair’s voice actor, recording at Edmonton’s studios.

Voice Over Director at BioWare, Caroline Livingstone, released an image confirming that Alistair’s return is not mere speculation.

Furthermore, Steve Valentine has also published a picture of himself recording with the following statement:

Somethings come as a surprise, even to me, guess where I am today.

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Steve Valentine at Edmonton studios with Caroline Livingstone (BioWare’s Voice Over Director) and Jessica Merizan (BioWare’s Community Manager).
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Steve Valentine voicing Alistair at BioWare studios.

Now, what’s left to know is whether Alistair is returning to become an influential character or a secondary role, as it happened in Dragon Age II. But according to BioWare, Inquisition will be the longest and deepest game of the series, so there’s a great chance that Alistair will get at least more scenes than the previous game. Other old characters like Morrigan, Varric and Cassandra have already been announced to return in Inquisition.

Dragon Age Inquisition: ‘Vivienne Was a Truly Great Character to Build’

Vivienne

BioWare has announced that a new Inquisitor follower will be revealed every month and March will be exclusively dedicated to Vivienne, a human mage and possible companion in Inquisition. Senior Artist Rion Swanson unveiled the development process for this character and stated that “it was a truly great character to build.” Swanson strengthened the fact that it is a significant product that meets the high-quality standards of the studio. Despite the multiple reviews and back-and-forth processes, Vivienne ended up being a refined, detailed and complex character, as Swanson concluded:

In the end, I think we achieved quite a dramatic look for this strong new character. The combination of sleek and powerful shapes with the ornate gold and fine fabrics gives Vivienne a pretty unique appearance. Watching her move through the world with flowing fabric and using her awesome mage abilities is a real nice counterbalance to some of the other heavily armored characters in your party. Enjoy!

Dragon Age Inquisition Vivienne
BioWare’s development process of Vivienne’s appearance, clothes and ornament.

The Madame de Fer or the Lady of Iron, as Vivienne is known, will be the official enchanter of the Imperial court in Inquisition and she won’t let anything stand in the way of her goals, even if it means going against her fellow mages. As BioWare stated: “Vivienne fights to restore order in a world gone mad…so long as that leaves her among those left standing, once all is said and done.”

Tom Clancy’s The Division: ‘Snowdrop Engine Gives Total Freedom’

Tom Clancy’s The Division is currently under development and Ubisoft has been unveiling multiple details about the programing engine, Snowdrop. According to Ubisoft, this engine has been “built from the ground up to create truly next-gen AAA games.” Very little is known about this upcoming third-person tactical shooter game, however it’s known that it will have a hybrid system made of role-playing and action features. Next-gen offers unparalleled possibilities and freedom seems to be the main key towards creativity, as Ubisoft stated today:

@TheDivisionGame: The Snowdrop engine gives content creators a total freedom to experiment, prototype and unleash their creativity.

Tom Clancy's The DivisionFurthermore, Rodrigo Cortes, Brand Art Director at Massive Entertainment, has stated that Snowdrop is designed to “do things better, not bigger.” To achieve a higher level of game development, in a period of great competitive edge between new AAA games, Ubisoft decided to rely on freedom rather than brute force, as Cortes explained:

Triple-A game development projects are growing in scope exponentially, so we wanted to be smart and not rely on brute force. We needed an engine that would support how we work in the studio, promote creativity, and allow the freedom to experiment and prototype.