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This Week In Gaming 11-19-19

1 post in this topic



Inside Xbox at X019 reveals, Patrick Klepek interviews former players about how World of Warcraft changed gaming and ruined a lot of lives, Jacob Geller on living spaces and gratefulness towards artificial loneliness, Alastair Hadden examines Disco Elysium and how you sort through the wreckage of its world to see how it reckons with history, Path Of Exile 2 announced, Alexis Ong covers the final days of Japan's most incredible arcade, Reyan Ali tells how a club bouncer starred in the arcade hit NBA Jam, Dan Root examines the animation of Indivisible, Diablo's original creators comment on Blizzard, John Romero on what he finds wrong with modern shooters, The Game Award's nominations, and more.


Gaming News (Announcements, previews, release dates, interviews and writing on upcoming games, DLC and game updates, company and developer news, country news, tech, mods)


Inside Xbox - IGN Live X019


We break down all the trailers, gameplay and reveals from Inside Xbox at X019! Watch the  biggest Inside Xbox yet! There are new game announcements from Xbox Game Studios and others, never before seen gameplay, exciting news on Project xCloud, Xbox Game Pass, and so much more

The big XO19 interview: Xbox boss Phil Spencer on Game Pass, streaming and Project Scarlett


At Microsoft's big XO19 event in London yesterday, Xbox boss Phil Spencer told the gathered press all about Game Pass, the company's video game subscription. He spoke about the Yakuza games coming to Xbox for the first time. He spoke about Final Fantasy games coming to Xbox for the first time, including even Final Fantasy 14. And he spoke about Project xCloud, Microsoft's take on video game streaming, which already seems like a cool proposition as it plans integration with Game Pass in 2020.


The Game Awards 2019 Nominations: Control and Death Stranding Among Top Nominees


It's the end of the year, which means holidays, turkeys, pie, and Geoff Keighley's The Game Awards. Nominees for the various categories of the 2019 Game Awards have been announced, and there seem to be a few clear frontrunners.


Grounded is Rust Meets Honey I Shrunk the Kids - IGN Live | X019


We chat to Obsidian about their new survival game where the characters are tiny but the stakes are huge.


Humankind preview: The end of Civilization?



At first glance, Humankind seems familiar, perhaps a little too much so. Start a game, and there’s your initial tribe on a beautiful hex-based map, looking almost exactly like Civilization has since 2009. That’s not inherently misleading: This is a game that’s supposed to look like Civilization, because it has the same motivation.

But it’s also not quite Civilization … and that has the potential to be a really good thing.


Path of Exile 2 announced, but it's not a separate game


Path of Exile 2 features a new 7-act story and overhauls many of its core systems, but all your old stuff will carry over.


Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection Won’t Appear Until February 25, 2020


Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection won’t be available when people expected. Capcom confirmed the game has been delayed by about one month. It will appear on February 25, 2020, rather than January 21, 2020.


How Watch Dogs: Legion’s quantum systems create near infinite possibilities



I’m somewhen in my 70s, wearing a pig mask in the middle of London, and I’ve just tasered someone in the kidneys. It’s rare for a game to accurately reflect your ten-year plan, but by golly Ubisoft, three out of four ain’t bad. I should be able to act out plenty of other life goals thanks to the sheer diversity of Watch Dogs: Legion’s cast, too – you can play as any NPC you like, if you weren’t already aware.


Everwild Announced For Xbox One As A Brand-New IP From Rare


Rare revealed a brand-new IP at X019 in London today with Everwild for Xbox One, and it is being developed by a new team.


Ultimate ADOM Gameplay | A Dungeon Crawler Classic Reborn


Ultimate Adom is a dungeon crawler classic reborn, and in this Ultimate Adom gameplay you’ll see that there are seven very different factions who want control over the cataclysmic aftermath left by Andor Drakon’s defeat.


Try the super-cute adventure-RPG Garden Story for free in the new demo on Steam


We included Garden Story in our list of the best games to cozy up with if you want more Stardew Valley: As village guardian and sword-wielding grape Concord, "you'll bring life back to the island, do favors for your fruity friends, and cultivate your garden while investigating The Rot that's destroying the village." It's set to come out in 2020, but you can play a chunk of it right now.


West Of Dead is a damned twin-stick western starring Ron Perlman


Even Purgatory needs cops, apparently. West Of Dead, a tense twin-stick shooter about keeping the dead where they belong, was announced at last night’s XO19 show, and it looks a right stunner. Hellboy (the good one) himself Ron Perlman lends his gravel-filled throat to a protagonist who’s part supernatural sheriff and part Marvel’s Ghost Rider. Y’see, sometimes the dead just don’t stay dead, end up in a cursed land forgotten by gods and demons alike – Wyoming.


Broken Lines looks like XCOM mixed with Darkest Dungeons in an alt-history WW2


The tactical-RPG follows a squad of soldiers trapped behind enemy lines.


Last Stop is the new game from the makers of Virginia


Variable State, the studio being the striking vignette ’em up Virginia, today announced their next game. Last Stop is a supernatural mystery in present-day London with three playable characters who get tangled in the same quite strange and awful spookening, and I’m well up for it. While Virginia had no dialogue (to excellent effect), this one’s a proper chatty one with voice acting and all, and the English voices combined with everyday sci-fi shenanigans mean I’m already unfairly thinking of Doctor Who. Look, watch the trailer and draw your own connections.


Inkulinati Gameplay | Living Ink Turn Based Animal Battles


In this Inkulinati gameplay, you’ll see living ink turn based animal battles. I know right? It’s a turn-based strategy game where you’ll be battling illuminated animals.


GLAAD, Microsoft Collaborate on Major Playable Transgender Game Character


Following up on the story-driven Life is Strange franchise, game developer DONTNOD Entertainment unveiled on Thursday its latest offering Tell Me Why at Microsoft's X019 event in London. As one of the first from a major games studio and publisher, the new title features a playable main character who identifies as transgender.


Wasteland 3 – "1987" Official X019 Trailer


Wasteland 3 launches May 19!

Debuted at X019 in London, the new "1987" trailer introduces players to more of the post-apocalyptic Colorado setting, and the lives at stake in the deeply reactive and highly tactical roleplaying game.


Everspace 2 Gameplay | Everspace 2 Is Like Diablo In A Spaceship


Everspace 2 is described as a 'hack and slash action RPG' in space - let's find out why in this gameplay demo.


Age of Empires 4 Expands its Era - IGN Live | X019


Learn more about the newest entry into the Age of Empire series in this developer interview.


Stronghold: Warlords Gameplay | Classic Castle Sim Returns


In this Stronghold: Warlords gameplay you’ll see the return of the classic castle sim. You’ll be able to besiege Great Khans, Imperial warlords, and Shogun commanders.


Suzerain Gameplay | What Would You Do As President?


Prove yourself as president (and a father) in this Suzerain gameplay. What would you do as President? Suze rain is a text based RPG which is focused on politics in the 1950s.


Planet Zoo is, temporarily, a game about mass-producing knackered warthogs


Something has… gone wrong with Planet Zoo. I think it’ll be fixed easily enough, possibly even today, and I’m still having fun with it as it is. But, in the game’s franchise mode at least, the promise of “build your own zoo, with whatever you like in it” has quietly been phased out for “in the grim darkness of the international animal trade, there is only warthogs”.


This War of Mine's final update adds a new character, scenario, and remastered graphics


The Final Cut marks the fifth anniversary of 11 Bit Studios' grim survival game.


Dicey Dungeons planning big updates, ports, and expanded mod support



Some big updates, ports to new platforms, and expanded mod support are coming to Dicey Dungeons, lead developer Terry Cavanagh has announced, laying out his plans for the deckbuilding roguelike’s future. Our Brendy said the game was quite good in our Dicey Dungeons review when it launched three months ago, not just because you can power through episodes as furry bearlike dice, and the devs have since given it six updates and a Halloween event. Soon players will be able to make even more of an impact on Dicey Dungeons themselves, thanks to the upcoming mod-focused update 1.7.


Bethesda forms new studio made up of former Human Head developers



Bethesda has opened a new studio made up of former Human Head developers.


2K Sports’ social media got hacked last night


This has been a bad stretch for video games social media, particularly the accounts of the sports publishers. 2K Games had their social media hacked almost across-the-board yesterday evening, including the account of 2K Sports’ Ronnie Singh, better known as Ronnie 2K.


EverQuest and Pantheon developer Brad McQuaid has died



Brad McQuaid, best known as a formative hand in the creation of EverQuest, has died aged 51. McQuaid's death was reported by the official Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen Twitter account, which is the MMO he was working on until his death.


Indie Devs: Apple Arcade is Healing a Wound in Mobile Gaming


The developers of Guildlings and Threes say the model is fixing the player-dev relationship.


Content I found interesting this week (interviews, recommendations, think pieces, history, music, culture, design, art, documentaries, criticism, etc)


The Final Days Of Japan's Most Incredible Arcade



Japan is known for its video arcades, from the tiniest little collections of claw games in basements to entire high-rise buildings packed with floor after floor of video amusements. On Sunday, November 17, perhaps the most elaborately themed arcade in the country, Anata no Warehouse in Kawasaki, will shut down for reasons that remain unexplained.


'World of Warcraft' Changed Video Games and Wrecked Lives


Over 15 years, Blizzard's MMO was an obsession for many, but an addiction for others.


The True, Secret History of the Creepiest Cult Game Ever Made



The Story of Kamikuishiki Village has been shared online as a game made by the Japanese Aum Shinrikyo cult. The real story is more complicated.


“He’s on fire!”: How a club bouncer starred in the making of billion-dollar arcade hit NBA Jam



The strangest thing happened to Willie Morris, Jr. Back in early 1992, when he was tearing up the courts of Chicago by day and bouncing a club by night, Morris was cooling off after a pickup game when a man introduced himself. He was making a video game about basketball, and he liked the way Morris played. He wanted to put him in the game. Morris thought he was joking.


Video Game Ladders Suck. Here's Why that Matters



The jump from 2D to 3D put video game ladders in a weird place, and they're only now getting better.


As Left 4 Dead 2 turns 10, we speak to its creators about the Valve game that won't die



When you get to the end of a hard-fought round in Left 4 Dead 2, you're usually crawling towards a rugged red door. Maybe there's only two of your zombie-slaying quartet left... your health bars stripped away by the horde, your eyesight drained of colour, signalling that one more knockdown equals permadeath. If you're lucky, you push through the pain and make it into the safe room on borrowed time, grab some ammo and shoot the charging zombies to carve a safe route for the rest of your team.


Gaming’s Pleasure Principle: How Virtual Worlds Make Our Creative Brains Come Alive­



One of the defining wonders of being human is the drive to create. We observe all sorts of bits and pieces in the world around us, imagining all the cool things we can do with it all. We don’t just make beer, we find new ways to make it pleasurably bitter, forming a name like Dark Matter IPA and painting swirls of hazy stars on the label. We create beautiful sounds and write expressive lyrics, transforming the end result into a digital stream that makes its way to another human’s ears to eventually get stuck in the subconscious. Thousands of years ago, we even started toying around with math, argued whether it’s made up or invented, and eventually created an artificial coding language that led to video games.


Doom creator John Romero on what's wrong with modern shooter games



“Give us more guns!” is a common battle-cry among players of first-person shooters, the videogame industry’s bloodiest genre. Doom co-creator John Romero has a rather different opinion.

“I would rather have fewer things with more meaning, than a million things you don’t identify with,” he says, sitting in a Berlin bar mocked up to resemble a 1920s Chicago speakeasy. “I would rather spend more time with a gun and make sure the gun’s design is really deep – that there’s a lot of cool stuff you learn about it.”


Former Bioware GM opens up about difficulties of Frostbite engine



At Reboot Develop Red, Aaryn Flynn compared EA's internal engine to an F1 car -- "very delicate and very hard to manage"


Blizzard 'has completely changed,' say Diablo's original creators



At Path of Exile's ExileCon fan convention in New Zealand this weekend I had the chance to speak with Blizzard North's founders and Diablo creators David Brevik, Erich Schaefer, and Max Schaefer to get their opinion on Blizzard's recent controversies. That interview, which includes their opinions on Diablo 4's announcement, Blizzard's past and present, and China's turbulent games industry, will be posted in full on PC Gamer later this week.

During our chat I asked Brevik, Erich, and Max Schaefer, if it was hard watching a company that they helped build embroil itself in controversy over the past year, and if it felt like Blizzard had "sort of" changed.


A Storm Is Blowing from Paradise: Disco Elysium on the Past and Present



What if we became a different kind of animal? Harry’s half-death and resurrection, which begins the game, is the fulfilment of that wish. He finds himself purged of biographical and ideological baggage, unmoored from memory and hurt. Briefly, he doesn’t even think. All it takes is a remarkable act of self-abnegation, hurried along by drink, drugs, and possible exposure to a hole in the world. “Total retrograde amnesia” may be a worn-out trope, but it’s a working stage door into the world of Elysium.

“Chaos as Canon,” by Joshua Calixto


Decision theory is a philosophical study that seeks to evaluate human choices based on their outcomes. According to decision theory, if you act according to your values, and your decision results in an active furthering of those values, you’ve made a “good” decision. If, for example, you value intelligence, and you opt to attend a private university that ultimately makes you more intelligent, then decision theory would hold that your choice to go to college was an unequivocally good one. Up until this point, videogames have been comically easy to dissect in accordance with decision theory. In videogame parlance, “choices matter” is typically just back-of-box promo-speak for “this game has two endings.” Your character saves the world the “good” way, or they do it the “evil” way. If you’re lucky, sometimes you’ll be offered the third “unorthodox” way. But with such binary options at your disposal, it’s always easy to evaluate the quality of your decisions and to weigh them against their opportunity costs. When you plug in the “good” answers, you get the good ending and can usually surmise what would happen if you chose the “bad” answers.





The small reminders of my body breaking are all over this vidcon. Sam Porter Bridges navigates the world with a fear of touch, but that’s true for a lot of people suffering from injury and disability. Sam’s affliction is not any of mine, nor mine of his – but they still make me think about the world my body is present in. I will never die and cause a nuclear voidout, but my body will, eventually, betray me no matter what.

Together, alone: the radical promise of pathfinding in Death Stranding


Hauling DNA samples and pizza through the desolate America of Death Stranding, I found myself thinking of the paths that wander in amongst the hills of my birthplace in Yorkshire. The best-known of these is the Dales Way, an 80-mile stretch of moor and meadow that follows the River Wharfe up past its headspring to the shores of Lake Windermere. The Way was officially added to British maps in 1969, following the establishing of our National Parks, but the path's origins go back a lot further. It is formed from a multitude of much older paths, trodden into the resonant, well-rooted soils and glaciated rock of the Yorkshire Dales by generations of travellers. Walking down the valley between Dent and Ribblehead, you can feel all those aggregated footfalls echoing in your very bones. Ancient artisans bearing flaked greenstone from the Neolithic axe factories in Langdale. Monks journeying to and from Bolton Abbey, and mourners from outlying villages carrying loved ones to the cemetery. Wanderers and the lost. Deliverers of one kind or another.


Remedy’s Control Is Actually a Cold War Thriller



Wander the corridors of Control’s Oldest House long enough and you’ll be hit with an eerie sense of familiarity. Despite the contemporary setting, Remedy’s action-thriller feels thoroughly historical. Everything from the architecture to the office furnishings point to a bygone era. The building’s occupant, the Federal Bureau of Control, isn’t some cutting-edge government agency, but a relic of the post-war era, stuffy and old fashioned. The Bureau’s headquarters also appears stuck in the past, its meandering hallways and concrete atriums eliciting the same nervous energy as existed during the height of the Cold War.


Lie in my Heart and dealing with the aftermath



Lie in my Heart isn't really a game. OK, it is technically, but it's also the story of an awful time in one man's life. That man being the developer of the game, Sébastien Genvo.


Console Gaming's *tiniest* problem | Game Accessibility and Text Size


Let's talk about text, baby. Though video games are usually seen as being about action and player inputs, they convey a lot of information through on screen text - subtitles, HUDs, menus. And a lot of the time that text is tiny and hard to read if you're sitting across the room from your TV. This is an overview of some of the text size problems games have, when they started and some tips on how to fix them.


Artificial Loneliness


I slept as never before, a stone on the river bed,
nothing between me and the white fire of the stars
but my thoughts, and they floated light as moths

Support me: https://www.patreon.com/JacobGeller


The Animation of Indivisible


Indivisible has been in the works for many years and has been painstakingly animated. Let's look at it!



Forever In Our Hearts: The Segata Sanshiro Story


GTV 88  “Forever in Our Hearts: The Segata Sanshiro Story” The greatest spokesman in history only lasted for one year, but will live forever!

Special thanks to Saturn Memories who uploaded the best resolution footage of the CMs and the game. Other footage by  Mr. Retro Greg, R3 Music Box, Teppei Okada and respective movie trailers.  For more good reading visit segaretro.org, I love that site!!


Things I missed from previous weeks


Death Stranding’s Depiction of Queerness is Hamfisted and Creepy



So, let’s get into the depiction itself for a second. Asexuality is a sexual orientation. You “self-identify” as asexual just like you would if you were gay or bi or pan. It simply means you do not feel sexual attraction to anyone. It has nothing to say about sexual desires or libido or the amount of sexual activity you’re engaging in. Some people who are asexual are also sex-averse or sex-repulsed, which means they absolutely do not want to have sex. Some are sex-indifferent, and some are sex-favorable; in other words, if you asked them, they would say yes in the same way that they might if you asked to go to the park or play catch or something – it’s an enjoyable activity for them. Doesn’t mean they’re attracted to you. Let’s leave this here. Kojima – or one of his writers – got a bunch of stuff materially wrong here, but they also showed their hand regarding how they feel about queerness in general with a couple of choice lines.


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