Are there times you feel like you have done everything right just to achieve that goal and it’s still not forthcoming? You feel like giving up at this point and doing something else.
Amazon has found its blue hero Amazon has found the face of its new Tick series in Guardians of the Galaxy star Peter Serafinowicz, according to Deadline.
Serafinowicz, who played Denarian Saal in James Gunn’s superhero film and who voiced Darth Maul in Star Wars: Episode I, will play the blue, antennae-sporting superhero in the streaming service’s remake. The actor also voiced Mild-Mannered Pate in Dark Souls II. It was previously announced that Griffin Newman would be joining the show as Arthur, the Tick’s right-hand man and sidekick. Valorie Curry is also joining the series as Arthur’s sister, Dot.
Based on Ben Edlund’s comic book series from 1986, The Tick follows the titular superhero after he loses his memory and winds up in the blue uniform. In 1994, Fox ordered an animated series based on the character, and in 2001, produced a live-action series. That, however, only ran for nine episodes before it was pulled from air.
The Tick has been in development since 2014, but there’s no estimated release window at this time.
Blizzard gives players a new reason to keep playing Overwatch Blizzard released a substantial update for the ongoing Overwatch closed beta this week that adds a host of new character skins, new achievements and a new map based on the historic U.S. highway Route 66. The developer also introduced a new gameplay option called Weekly Brawls, which is are inspired by another Blizzard game, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft.
Weekly Brawls, inspired by Hearthstone’s Tavern Brawls, are rotating game types that feature “a set of unique (and sometimes crazy) rules" from Overwatch’s Custom Game system.
Here’s how Blizzard describes it:
In one Weekly Brawl, you’ll only be able to play Soldier: 76, while in another Weekly Brawl, a random hero will be selected for you each time you respawn. Other Weekly Brawls will restrict you to Support heroes only, or Tank heroes only, or Defense heroes only…
Blizzard calls the new gameplay option "a work in progress and something we consider more of an experiment for now." Currently, Blizzard is rotating the new game type out on a daily basis, so it can test the feature. One of the earliest Weekly Brawls is called "Super Shimada Bros.," which features faster cooldowns for abilities and slower cooldowns for ultimates, and limits players to just two hero choices: Genji and Hanzo.
Overwatch’s latest update also adds a dozen new legendary skins for certain characters. Here’s a look at what’s new.
For a full list of changes, additions and balance update, check out Blizzard’s beta patch notes for Overwatch’s March 22 update.
Overwatch is coming to PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One May 24. The game’s open beta kicks off May 3.
It’s available March 29, just in time for the Stanley Cup Playoffs NHL 16, the current edition of EA Sports’ ice hockey simulation, is the next title to go in the EA Access vault of games. It will join the lineup on March 29, about two weeks before the NHL’s Stanley Cup Playoffs get underway.
Of the 16 titles in EA Access, eight so far are EA Sports titles. NHL 16 will make it nine-of-17; its predecessor NHL 15 also is on the list. EA Access added Madden NFL 16 to the vault on Feb 2, one week before Super Bowl L.
EA Access is a premium subscription available only to Xbox One subscribers. It costs $24.99 annually, or $4.99 month-to-month. A companion service, Origin Access, launched in January and has 17 titles in its library. The latest, 2014’s Titanfall, was added to Origin Access yesterday.
When the things that scare us the most also bring us closer together In my early twenties, I was plagued for weeks by the same dream about my teeth falling out. Each night they would wiggle lose and drop out of my horrified head. Each morning I would awake with a tiny jump before I realized every single tooth was still tightly in place.
It was a harmless dream. Even the panic didn’t last more than a few seconds. But that long-lost feeling was familiar to me as I played through Figment, an isometric adventure game that mixes fears with a stylish dreamworld.
Figment is the latest from Denmark-based developer Bedtime Digital Games. The game, due out in 2017, is a work-in-progress for PC, PlayStation and Xbox systems. Speaking to Polygon, cofounder and game designer Jonas Byrresen explained that the game takes place inside the subconscious mind of a character players will never truly meet. This mysterious person has endured a trauma, and it’s up to players to figure out exactly what that incident was.
“When you go through a trauma … something fills up your head" said Byrresen. "In this case it’s a lot of fear and doubt.
"Plague represents our fear of everything [that’s] filthy."
"Trauma is something that can take many shapes, but it’s also something a lot of people encounter during their lives. It represents an internal struggle that a lot of people will have. It represents something very basic and human."
Players adventure through this colorful world as Dusty — a character whose dour demeanor is offset by his Where-the-Wild-Things-Are-meets-Adventure-Time appearance. Figment’s fear and doubt manifest as comical, singing villains, which Dusty must confront and triumph over. During our demo, we ran into Plague, whose sick singing puns were accompanied by noxious gas and snot-hurling sidekicks. It’s a super gross, super silly take on a very basic human fear.
"Plague represents our fear of everything [that’s] filthy, essentially, but also our fear of our own mortality because of disease and getting old," Byrresen said.
"It’s basically something we worked with from the start, this idea that we as humans just share some basic fears. It’s so deeply ingrained in us. There’s some nightmares we all have had."
It’s a concept that Figment nails in many ways. The first time I encountered teeth in the game — floating platforms and bridges for me to run across — I thought nothing of it. But as I crossed, they sometimes cracked and crumbled into nothingness. I was reminded of my own nightmares with a cringe.
Confronting these fears and nightmares, however, is central to Figment. Byrresen defines Dusty as the mind’s avatar for courage. Not just the heroic kind, either, but the kind needed to tackle every day life. The game’s villains will often run from you when they’re feeling threatened, but the only real way to victory is confrontation.
"[The villains] are cowards, so they keep running away," Byrresen said. "Each world is about finding a way to corner them, and then finally having a chance for defeating them.
"You need to face your fears. That’s the way you overcome them."
Xbox and PC players can check it out 5 days later Starting April 8 at 10 a.m. PT, Battleborn will enter open beta, with PlayStation 4 owners getting access to the game ahead of Windows PC and Xbox One players.
After arriving first on PS4, the open beta period will hit Xbox and Steam on April 13. The campaign will run until April 18 at 7 a.m. PT, giving PS4 players a full five extra days to check out Battleborn, according to the game’s website. Players are not required to pre-register for access; instead, the download will be available on each platform’s storefront at launch.
Those who check out the beta on PS4 will not only get more time with Battleborn, but they’ll also be given the first downloadable content pack and an extra playable character for free when the full game launches. During the open beta — which won’t require a PS Plus subscription to check out — PS4 players will also have an additional character at their disposal.
Regardless of platform, open beta participants will be able to check out Battleborn’s story mode as well as two different multiplayer modes. Seven characters will be available to start with, and more are unlockable as players progress through the campaign.
Publisher 2K confirmed the timed exclusivity period on PS4 for the multiplayer shooter back in October. This was prior to the company delaying the game from a February launch to its new release date of May 3.
2K and developer Gearbox Software published a video detailing the game’s Story Mode to coincide with the open beta date announcement. You can watch that up top to get a sense of the game’s “TV-style" campaign. For more on Battleborn, read our impressions from back in October and check out our gameplay below.
We’re still a few weeks out from Dark Souls 3’s worldwide release date, but the much-anticipated, hyper-difficult role-playing game launches today in Japan. We’ve had a a review build for a week now, and while we wouldn’t want to ruin the whole game, we’re going to share a huge compilation of footage from our first 15 hours with it.
The video above is over an hour-and-a-half, and it includes a ton of new and never-before-seen stuff from Dark Souls 3. You can check out the challenges that await on the Road of Sacrifice, watch us take out the game’s first of four major bosses in Farron’s Undead Legion and even see us die a few times (naturally).
Again, all of this footage is from our first 15 hours with Dark Souls 3, what we would definitely call the early game. Late-game stuff isn’t spoiled here, but if you’re avoiding any spoilers at all, don’t watch.
Dark Souls 3 launches on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Windows PC on Tuesday, April 12. We’ll have a full review of the game closer to that date.
Nixon official: If only we’d had time travel. The Flash returned last night after a three week hiatus to drive home two very, very important messages with viewers.
Have a seat, kids.
Drugs are bad, okay? Definitely don’t do drugs, and especially don’t do performance enhancing drugs. Just say no to Velocity 9, okay?
And, let’s be crystal clear about this last one: If you ever ask your boss out for coffee to discuss a work conflict, and if your boss then mistakenly thinks that you’ve asked them out on a date … you must absolutely be sure that you are the one to apologize for making them feel awkward about that.
Last night’s episode of CW’s The Flash opened with the STAR Labs team out at a cavernous gorge on a training exercise. Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) is trying like the dickens to leap said gorge, only to fall dangerously short. As a way to break the tension, and release the team from the break-neck pace of training and research they’ve been keeping, Cisco Ramon (Carlos Valdes) recommends that they take a field trip to a dance club.
At the club we learn a few things. First, Cisco dances like an idiot. Second, Iris West (Candice Patton) is definitely weirded out that on Earth 2 her doppelganger is probably having sex with Allen’s doppelganger. Third, there’s another speedster on the loose.
We know this because someone who looks an awful lot like the Flash breaks into the club, empties the registers and robs several hundred patrons blind. And it all happens while Allen is standing right there.
Worse still, Allen can’t seem to match their speed. The unknown speedster kicks it into fifth gear, and they’re gone.
Yes, even after all the portals have been closed there’s still another person left in Central City that can run faster than the Flash.
If it ain’t broke, I guess…
While Wally West (Keiynan Lonsdale) is conspicuously off camera during all of this, it turns out the unknown speedster is actually an old friend of Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker). She’s a scientist named Eliza Harmon (Allison Paige), a.k.a. Trajectory. It seems that Snow called on Harmon to help her sequence Velocity 9 for the late Jay Garrick (Teddy Sears). Harmon reverse-engineered the formula, and since then has been hopped up on speed juice.
Trouble is, it’s causing her to slowly lose her mind. Trajectory isn’t just an alter ego, it’s another Gollum-like personality which she struggles against throughout the episode.
Meanwhile, Iris West’s boss Scott Evans (Tone Bell, Truth Be Told) wants a hit piece on Flash post haste. He has a hunch that the mysterious speedster is actually Flash in disguise and won’t rest until West has the salacious story on his desk. West tries again and again to stall Evans, but after he publicly confronts her in the office she asks for a private meeting to discuss the issue over coffee.
For West this is an important meeting with her superior about editorial policy. But for Evans it’s … a date?
In what may be one of the strangest, most tone-deaf storylines of any episode this season the writers actually found a way to wave off what would otherwise be extremely creepy as merely cute. Evans gets all embarrassed, and by the end of the episode West makes it clear it was all her fault for “misreading" the signs and yes, of course she’d like to date him in the future.
The mind boggles.
Anyway, Allen has another episode of his now patented inadequacy/depression. In order to catch Trajectory he makes off with the last remaining sample of Velocity 9. But Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh) catches on and confronts him.
"Yeah, I took it," Allen says, the vial still hot in his hand. "But I haven’t taken it yet. … If the game is already rigged, why can’t I level the playing field? If everyone else is cheating, then why can’t I?"
"You lose a chunk of your humanity every time you compromise your values," Wells says. "Don’t be like me. Be better. Be like Jay Garrick."
Allen’s monologue comes off as a little bit too on-the-nose with regard to actual performance enhancing drug use, and Wells’ retort just … doesn’t make any sense at all.
Jay took Velocity 9 all the time, didn’t he? And the audience knows he’s Zoom now, the evil menace bent on killing the Flash. But whatever.
Allen smashes the vial and walks away from drugs seemingly forever. Later, it’s that same drug addiction theme that will be Trajectory’s undoing. Allen has another flash of his patented speed-boosting confidence and finally catches up with her, tosses her off a bridge and into a power transformer, knocking her out. As she wakes up she takes the last vial of Velocity 9 and injects herself. She runs faster than any speedster the STAR Labs team has ever seen … and promptly disintegrates.
Her cells completely break down, turn blue and evaporate leaving nothing but a steaming red suit. A waste of a really good bit of costuming, if you ask me.
In the episode’s conclusion, Cisco finally reveals that he’s been Vibe-ing at STAR Labs whenever he gets near Garrick’s old helmet. So Allen hands it to him, and to everyone’s surprise (excluding the audience) he Vibes that Zoom is actually Jay Garrick. In his timeline Snow wasn’t able to cure him, and he’s killing speedsters one by one in order to prolong his own life.
In the episode’s coda Jesse Wells (Violett Beane) runs away. She gets on a bus to Opal City, no longer willing to be under her father’s thumb. We’ll have to wait until next week to see if that storyline gets picked up, or if she’s gone the way of Patty Spivot and into next season somewhere.
About two years ago Jason Rubin joined Oculus VR to lead software development for the company’s much talked about Oculus Rift. But there was one problem.
“There was no software, really, just VR," he said during an interview last week. "The dev kits were only 14 to 16 months old.
"It was always clear to me, coming from the console side, that you can’t launch hardware without good games."
So over the next two years, Rubin, head of Oculus worldwide studios, worked with developers inside and outside the company to make sure that when Oculus Rift was ready to go on sale it would have a robust, eclectic mix of games to launch alongside it.
"My job is to find content that makes the Rift interesting to consumers," he said. "I have a budget and I went out and found people to makes the types of games that would fill the holes I saw we had in the launch lineup."
Last week’s three-day San Francisco press event for the Oculus Rift, which ran across the beginning of the Game Developers Conference, was in many ways a sign of how far Rubin’s efforts have gone to fix those launch holes.
The day-long events, set-up so that journalists could come in three waves to play through games on the headset, included more than 40 playable titles. Many of those games will launch on March 28 alongside the Rift.
Early on, one of the biggest holes Rubin found in the lineup for the virtual reality headset were games that played from a third-person perspective.
"The reason why third-person games were a hold was because of VR purists, researchers and university professors," Rubin said. "From their standpoint, VR means a very specific thing. That thing is a holodeck and the holodeck is not in third person.
"From their standpoint, third-person is somewhat of an abomination."
But Rubin saw the value and potential in third-person games.
While the game takes place in the third-person, with players controlling a character typically located on the landscape beneath or around them, the player still views the experience from a first-person perspective.
The player essentially become the camera, but in the case of VR, it feels like you still have a presence in the game, looming over the world in which you are controlling the game’s character.
That’s in part because developers can tinker with the view, making the eyes further apart from each other, for instance, to tweak the scale and make the player feel like a giant.
That third-person perspective can also be used for tabletop gaming. Airmech, for instance, has you controlling the real-time strategy game from the view of someone standing in front of a big hologram table.
"It all just kind of works," Rubin said.
Airmech is also an example of the other sort of work Rubin and his team has been doing.
"Airmech was already working on Oculus," Rubin said. "The developers were going to make this small game and I said, ‘Let’s make this huge.’"
The end result is a full-blown VR game bigger than the original that grabbed a lot of buzz at last week’s event.
In the case of Crytek’s The Climb, Rubin suggested the opposite.
"Crytek had an idea for a massive game," he said. "They were showing me it and then said, ‘Then you’re going to be climbing up stuff.’
"I said, ‘This is amazing, a cliff totally works. Let’s make it a climbing game.’"
Initially, the developers were resistant to the idea, but Rubin convinced them.
"It was this hole," he said. "We’re still not even scratching the surface of what can be done.
"But we do have enough variety and exciting content now so that everyone can say there’s something for them."
Currently, Oculus Studios only owns the IP for two of the launch titles: Hero Bound and Dead and Buried.
"Those games wouldn’t exist without Oculus Studios," Rubin said.
The Zelda-like Hero Bound was developed by Gunfire Games, a studio made up almost entirely of staff from Darksiders’ developer Vigil Games. He said Gunfire was teetering on the edge of collapse when Oculus hired them to create the game.
"They probably would have gone under if Oculus hadn’t stepped in," he said.
Now, that studio is working on Chronos, a darker, more zoomed-in third-person action game that Gunfire owns.
Unlike the HTC Vive VR headset, Oculus won’t be launching with its controllers, instead it ships with an Xbox One wireless gamepad.
The Oculus Touch controller will hit in the second half of the year. That creates a sort of second launch for the platform and another wave of games for Rubin and his team to cultivate.
Rubin says he’s not worried that the Rift will lose players to the Vive simply because it doesn’t have its controller hitting with the headset.
"There may be some people who say, ‘I want hand tracking controls today.’ Here is what I would say," he said. "I can say with confidence that this is an amazing launch lineup. Someone who gets [the Oculus Rift] has an incredible amount of stuff to do this year and flowing into next year. If I was launching a Touch product this month I wouldn’t feel that way.
"Those are games that need more time. These games are ready. I can look them in the eye and say this is a full launch lineup."
When the Oculus Touch controllers are released, Rubin said, the controllers will have a big event of their own.
Even at last week’s event, there were a mix of early games that use the Touch.
Rubin’s attention is already beginning to shift to Touch games, preparing those titles for a second launch window and looking for holes in that lineup.
"We are focused on having that volume at launch," he said. "And continuing to support innovation and the medium."
While a wave of Touch Controller supported games will hit alongside the controller, that doesn’t mean that Oculus and Rift developers will turn their back on VR games that use the traditional gamepad controller.
"I don’t think the gamepad is going anywhere," Rubin said. "You can play with it for hours. We will continue to support that."
As Rubin transitions from bolstering the launch lineup, to working with developers on the Touch Controller launch lineup, he’s already thinking about what’s next.
Even after those two launch windows, there’s still plenty to do.
"In the perfect world there wouldn’t be a need for me," he said. "In the real world, with a zero install base, that’s not the case."
Rubin believes that the as more VR games are made and released, more lessons will be learned about what does and doesn’t work.
The age of VR starts with this year’s Game Developers Conference
Those lessons are applied in two main ways, he said.
Studios with their own game engines use their game development to improve the engines they license to other developers. So the lessons learned by Crytek while working on The Climb go back into the Crytek Engine. The same is true with Epic and the Unreal Engine.
Developers also learn a lot from each other’s games.
Rubin said he spent a lot of those preview days last week bringing one developer over to see other developer’s game.
He showed a lot of developers Ubisoft’s Eagle Flight and how it minimized motion sickness during the weaving movement of flight by reducing the peripheral view in some moments. He pointed people to VR Sports and how it mastered the feel of a throw.
"This is the first time we have shown all of the content in one place," Rubin said. "Devs are seeing each other’s games. The more content that is out there the faster developer improvement accelerates.
"It’s good for everyone."
And that includes other VR headsets as well.
Rubin said he was particularly impressed with the PlayStation VR’s The London Heist and RIGS: Mechanized Combat League.
Those lessons are vital to help virtual reality gaming grow and it still has lot of growing to do, Rubin said.
Oculus Rift launch lineup
"Right now the scale of game we can do and the amount of game we can do is here," he said. "Over time, though, we need to get to triple, triple A games, like Call of Duty.
"We haven’t had enough time to make a Call of Duty yet. Even if we started with the Devkit 2 (in 2014) launch.
"There just wasn’t enough time, not to mention that we don’t know how to make that sort of game in VR. Over time, my job will be moving up the ladder. Smaller indies will fund themselves and my job will be to move into larger and larger titles so probably working with fewer and fewer games."
As quality goes up, Rubin said, depth increases as well, as does development time and the need for experience.
"It wasn’t a hole we could get to," he said of the big AAA game. "If you started developing Grand Theft Auto when we released the dev kits, you’d still be working on it."
Rubin, though, remains confident of the 30 titles that will be available to VR gamers on March 28.
"The most import thing in the launch of hardware is the content," he said. "The reason we’re here today showing all of this stuff is that we have one of the strongest lineups of games."
Dark Souls and Tekken Tag Tournament 2 are the latest Xbox 360 games to become backward compatible on Xbox One. Microsoft confirmed on the Major Nelson blog today that these games are now playable on Xbox One.
The announcement coincides with Microsoft rolling out an update to Xbox One owners that allows them to purchase Xbox 360 games directly from the Xbox One’s Marketplace. This is a feature that Preview Program members have had access to since earlier this month.
Microsoft announced that Dark Souls would be joining the list of backward compatible 360 titles last month when it offered the game as a pre-order bonus for Dark Souls 3. Those who purchased the upcoming game in From Software’s hardcore action series on Xbox One received a download code for the earlier 360 title, which launched in 2007.
Earlier this week, Xbox 360 games like Assassin’s Creed also became available to play on Xbox One.