Woah, this is late isn’t it? Unfortunately I spent most of the weekend tied to an old bedframe being paddled by Dane with a child’s cricket bat after he ambushed me in the Hooters parking lot. But the news never sleeps, and I made sure not to let a little battery get in the way of the week’s gossip. Catch up on the latest scoops after the jump.
Call of Duty Infinite Warfare is probably unplayable for Windows Store buyers
Brace yourself, because you’re about to hear one of the stupidest things you’ll ever hear. People playing Infinite Warfare on PC that purchased the game from the Windows Store will NOT be able to play with people who bought it on Steam.
Here’s the kicker – this was Activision’s decision. I can’t imagine how unfathomably ignorant you have to be to make such a spectacularly stupid choice while conscious, but there it is. What this means is that, especially for those of us down here in SA, finding games if you bought off the Windows Store is going to be much, much harder.
I think what pisses me off most about this is that it’s not at all intuitive. If I hadn’t come across this particular piece of news and was struck down by a particularly severe psychotic episode where I compounded the bad decision of buying Infinite Warfare with the far worse decision of getting it from the Windows Store, I’d never have known.
People who buy this game from the less popular platform are going to get really screwed over by this, and they really don’t deserve to be.
EA responds to criticism over Titanfall 2 release timing
Just last week I spoke about how analysts have predicted crappier-than-expected sales for Titanfall 2 based on it being wedged between the two biggest FPS releases of the year.
EA’s CEO Andrew Wilson said this week that the company stands by the decision, saying that while Titanfall 2 and Battlefield 1 “have some overlap”, “they fulfil very different motivations in what a player is looking for”.
“We think there’s really three types of players,” Wilson said. “People that really love Battlefield and that kind of big strategic gameplay that will orient in that direction; the player that loves the fast, fluid, kinetic gameplay of Titanfall 2 that really orient in that direction; and the player that just has to play the two greatest shooters this year and will buy both.”
I feel like he may kind of be missing the point here. The defense, to me, sounds a lot like “the game will sell fine”, but the real question is “will it sell appreciably less than it would have if released in a better timeframe”, which I feel like cannot not be a “yes”.
It’s sad. Titanfall was a fantastic, underappreciated game and now the second one comes along and is even better and it gets a crappy launch date it doesn’t deserve. Boo.
Everything known about Death Stranding
Hey you, have you been following this? Death Stranding is the new game coming from Hideo Kojima as an independent operator, after that messy falling out he had with Konami.
So here’s a quick update on everything we know about the game so far. It still has that Kojima’s new number one BFF Norman Reedus, who will play a character in the game with his likeness and voice and all that jazz. Guillermo del Toro is also involved.
If you have an Xbox One, you definitely won’t be playing it. Kojima has partnered with Sony to get this thing made, which means it’s going to be a PS4 console exclusive. PC is still a maybe right now, but word on the street has been that Kojima’s next game will come to the masterrace as well.
The game is being worked on by Metal Gear collaborators. The art director and producer and the guy who writes the Metal Gear novels have all jumped on board as well, so there’s a good bevy of talent working on this one. In spite of all that, Kojima has been adamant that the game is in no way related to Metal Gear – which makes sense since he’s lost the right to all that to Konami, and they’ve got a bit of a Mean Girls situation right now.
Finally, the game has gameplay that has been compared to Uncharted – it’ll be an open world action game with a narrative basis. The story is apparently about the “connections we share with other people”, which is vague enough to not tell us anything in particular.
No release date yet, and it’s expected to still be a pretty long way off. Don’t count on this coming next year.
Turtle Rock releases last unfinished Left 4 Dead campaign
Turtle Rock Studios have dumped the last of the campaigns that never made it to the Left 4 Dead final release, this one called “Dam It”.
According to the studio it’s missing a couple of code features but is “playable from beginning to end”, and includes two standalone survival maps that didn’t ship with the game.
If you’re keen to give it a try, you can find the files right here.
Diablo 3 getting new challenge rift mode
Blizzard continues to support Diablo 3, and to be honest the game is so much better now than it was at launch it might as well be a different game entirely.
You’ve already seen the Necromancer reveal, but in a Blizzcon interview with the game’s lead designer they revealed everything from a new rift mode to a brand new armoury system. Check out this video for the juicy deets.
Sony execs still believe in No Man’s Sky
One of Sony’s big cheeses talked No Man’s Sky this week, saying that Sean Murray and his team “had an incredible vision”, with “huge ambition for a very small team”.
The game has been harshly criticised for not delivering on fan expectations, but Sony insists that the developer is still working towards it.
“What we learned from [No Man’s Sky] is that we don’t want to stifle ambition, we don’t want to stifle creativity,” Worldwide Studios president Shawn Layden said. “We don’t want to put people into slots where they must execute against an action-adventure path or a fighting path or a shooting path.
“And perhaps over time, it’ll reveal itself to be all that it can be.”
This pretty much sums up everything I hate about the games industry right now. The game is unfinished, not at the level it should be with the “ambitious vision” still unfulfilled and yet it’s still pushed out the door to start taking customer money. Ugh.
Blizzard not planning any other old remasters
You may have seen that Blizzard is planning on remaking Diablo 1 in Diablo 3 – sort of. It’s a little unclear at this point, but as part of the anniversary there’ll be reworked content from the original game in an upcoming patch.
This prompted a question from a fan in a Q&A session regarding possible reworks of Warcraft 1 and 2. Blizzard co-founder Frank Pearce gave a pretty candid, and awesome, answer.
“We are fortunate enough to have all of the original source code and assets to everything we’ve done in the past,” explained Pearce. “But actually, it turns out, it’s really hard to access that stuff, unlock it, and figure out how it all works. Because we’re old, we’ve forgotten.
“We had some dedicated folks that were passionate about the idea, dig up the Warcraft 1 assets and code. They got it working and they got it running in a window. And I played it. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans was awesome for its time. I promise you, in today’s world, by today’s standards, it’s just not that fun anymore.”
I think this is a pretty great answer, actually. Older games aren’t just old because the graphics suck, there’ve been some pretty major shifts in what we enjoy and what constitutes a good game today.
The Overwatch World Cup happened at Blizzcon this weekend, and below are some highlights from the finals. Spoilers, obviously.
Sticking with Overwatch, check out the game’s brand new hero – Sombra.
How does Titanfall 2 compare across the three platforms? This video gives a full performance comparison.
Finally, check out these new teasers for the adaptation of Ken Follet’s classic novel, The Pillars of the Earth.
Best of NAG
Resident hardware expert Neo Sibeko reviews a graphics card with a really long name. It’s a 1080 though, so it’s kind of a beast.
Are people still playing Pokemon GO? If you’re one of those people who’s turned walking into a game, you’re getting some new stuff.
Dane Remendes left the safety of his sordid sex dungeon to get his grubby, latex-clad hands on Watch Dogs 2. Did he like it? Find out here.
As always, end off this reading marathon with the calming sounds of the NAG Podcast.