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2014-10-16
EA Access, the publisher's Xbox One-only subscription plan that offers free access to a limited selection of games, is adding another new game to its lineup. This time, it's PopCap's Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. The first-person shooter is now a part of The Vault, making it available for free to anyone with an EA Access membership. That means, if you're a subscriber, you can now download the game and play it as much as you want for as long your as your subscription is active. On the surface, you might expect Garden Warfare to be a cash-in that's simply trying to exploit the Plants vs. Zombies brand, but it's actually a surprisingly fun shooter. It's one that's also been updated with a great deal of free content since its release in February. This is the second game to be added to The Vault since Access' announcement, following Need for Speed: Rivals last month. Other supported games include Battlefield 4, Madden NFL 25, FIFA 14, and Peggle 2. EA claims that once a game is added to the Vault, it will likely stay there permanently. Free access to Vault games is just one of the benefits Access members receive, though it's certainly the most significant one. Others include limited, early access to upcoming EA games and discounts on certain DLC. Access costs $5/month or $30/year, and is currently only available on Xbox One. When it was first revealed in August, we learned that Sony declined to offer Access to PS4 owners, claiming the service didn't present good value, though it still may end up on there one day. Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
Paradox Interactive is celebrating their one-year anniversary of Magicka: Wizard Wars. Released in Early Access one year ago, Magicka: Wizard Wars now has a community of close to 1 million registered users and to celebrate we've teamed up with Paradox to give away a special in game robe. The robe is called the "Daft Robe" and provides a boost to lightning spells. Included in the robe is the /daft emote which results in your wizard showing off their awesome dance moves! Magicka: Wizard Wars, which is free to download and play immediately in Early Access, is a spellcasting action player-versus-player (PvP) game where two teams of four wizards each go head-to-head utilizing the celebrated spellcasting system - and the chaotic friendly fire - of Magicka. Warring Wizards combine elements to attack, defend, and generate total confusion in hundreds of ways as they battle it out to become the last Wizard standing.   It wouldn't be a party unless everyone could play, so these codes have no restrictions, everyone can grab one! To redeem your key: Launch Steam (download and install Steam if you're not on Steam yet) Click "Games" from the menu bar at the top of the Steam client Select "Activate a product on Steam" Follow on-screen instructions to redeem Steam key After redemption, Steam will automatically download and install Magicka: Wizard Wars When download is complete, select Magicka: Wizard Wars from your Steam Library to launch game         Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
A new update for Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor has gone live today, at least on current-gen consoles. It's a hefty update at 655 MB (on PS4), and while we don't yet know the full extent of what it does, one thing we do know is that introduces a new photo-taking mode. Similar to the Photo mode we've seen in other games, this one allows you to remove the UI from the screen and tweak various settings--depth of field, tilt, field of view, etc. It was first discovered by Reddit user BillionthHippo in the Xbox One version, and I've since downloaded the update and tested out the feature myself on PS4. Curiously, Photo mode doesn't appear to itself include the ability to capture a photo. After downloading the update, you'll see the tutorial screen to the right, explaining that the mode needs to be enabled in the settings before it can be used (done by clicking the left stick at any time). Once you're in photo mode, you can tweak photo settings, but there is no button you can to press to save your photo. On PS4, this isn't much of an issue, as you can use the Share button to save your work. On Xbox One, there is currently no equivalent feature, rendering Photo mode largely useless until Microsoft adds a way to take screenshots--something that is coming. We've contacted Warner Bros. to see if the feature is working as intended, as well as to find out what else (if anything) this patch does. We'll report back when we learn more.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
  Blizzard Entertainment has announced a deal that bundles World of Warcraft and its expansions The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, and Mists of Pandaria together for $19.99 on the Battle.net store. In addition, Blizzard also reminded players that all World of Warcraft subscribers have been upgraded with access to Mists of Pandaria content for free. The announcement precedes the launch of the latest World of Warcraft expansion Warlords of Draenor, which will be released on November 13. In the lead-up to the expansion, Blizzard recently launched a free Iron Tide content update which introduced a host of new changes to the game, including a new world event, updated character models, interface improvements, and more. Not sure if your PC will be able to run the upcoming Warlords of Draenor expansion? Check the minimum and recommended PC specifications here. For more information on Warlords of Draenor, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.     Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
Did the recent release of Alien: Isolation stoke your desire for more extraterrestrial adventures? GOG.com is hoping to scratch that itch with their most recent promotion: you can download Aliens vs. Predator for free from the company's site. Available until Friday, the classic FPS is also a way for GOG to test their Galaxy multiplayer client. In a press release, GOG VP of online tech wrote, "We're ready to take in more gamers, and AvP seemed like a natural choice: it's high up on our community wishlist, and it's definitely one of the all-time best FPS titles. It also allows for testing Galaxy in a more dynamic environment." The press release notes that "Galaxy testers will soon be able to play AvP with their Steam friends using GOG Galaxy's cross-play feature, as the game is scheduled to receive a dedicated cross-compatibility update on Steam." In addition, GOG announced that they've upped the total number of Linux-compatible titles to 100 with the addition of Baldur's Gate, Planescape: Torment, Papers, Please, and others. You can see the full list of Linux compatible games on the GOG website.     Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
Nintendo has revealed concept art of Link riding a new vehicle coming in Mario Kart 8's first DLC, and it looks suitably awesome. The Master Cycle has Link's signature Hylian Shield on one side, the Triforce symbol on its wheels, and--best of all--an Epona-looking horse head on the front. According to Nintendo's Twitter account, it also "has plenty of horsepower." (Jokes!) The first DLC pack, of which this is a part, is the Legend of Zelda pack. Launching in November, it adds Link, Tanooki Mario, and Cat Peach as playable characters, along with the F-Zero Blue Falcon as a playable kart. It also adds three other karts (one being the Master Cycle) and new tracks. A second DLC pack, the Animal Crossing pack, launches next May and includes the Villager, Isabelle, and Dry Bowser, in addition to other, unannounced content. Each of these packs will cost $8, or you can buy a bundle with both for $12. You can preorder them now, and by doing so, you'll get immediate access to some new colors of Yoshi and Shy Guy. Although this is the first post-release content to be sold for Mario Kart 8, the game received a free update in August that added new Mercedes-Benz vehicles for use in the game.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-16
Sleeping Dogs is an open-world crime game for busy people. It's not an experience padded with multiple cities or the obligatory "slow living" town at the outskirts of the world map. Compared to recent game versions of Los Angeles in Grand Theft Auto V and Chicago in Watch Dogs, the dense depiction of Sleeping Dogs' Hong Kong lends itself well to all-business efficiency, where it doesn't take long to get anything done, whether it's a story mission or a stress-relieving brawl that you pursue. As one of the better open world games of the last two years, this rerelease is not unexpected. Yet, as the second of Square Enix's "Definitive Editions," this enhanced version of Sleeping Dogs does not exhibit the same level of care as this year's Tomb Raider re-release. United Front Games' vision of Hong Kong isn't the largest urban game world, but like the real city itself, it makes the most of its limited space. It's a city of countless, well-placed distractions, from street races to gang hideout infiltrations. You might be on your way to start a story mission, only to see an exotic car a client wants drive by. Distractions in Sleeping Dogs work because the game mixes passive diversions with dynamic ones, and just because activities are close to each other doesn't mean that Hong Kong is a city bereft of challenges. Even if you're just yards away from a hidden collectable, it might take you 10 minutes to find the one route to reach that treasure. Thanks to the city's tight design, it's not unheard of to reach 100 percent completion--and 100 percent satisfaction--in less than 25 hours. With all the post-release content added to the Definitive Edition, you're looking at an additional five hours. The two downloadable side stories--one involving Chinese horror myths, the other recasting protagonist Wei Shen as a traffic cop--excel by being lighthearted in tone, a fitting contrast to the tension-heavy story of the main game. For as much as Sleeping Dogs excels in its conciseness, much of the narrative pacing feels rushed. The "rise through the ranks" story conceits in urban open world games have run their course, and Sleeping Dogs would have been a great example of the latter had it not been for the hurried nature of Wei Shen’s promotions as a member of the Hong Kong Triad. Where the filler-free narrative approach works is by not centering the game on Wei's quest for vengeance. His motivations are never hamfisted: you don't need to lose a sister to gangs and drugs to sympathize with Wei’s emotional baggage. This material is ripe for a prequel, but Sleeping Dogs aptly focuses your attention on the present, immersing you in Hong Kong’s underworld through Wei's perspective. The story is a clear homage to decades of crime films featuring undercover protagonists, and explores the common theme of losing oneself to the well-curated undercover persona. You begin to believe Wei's loyalty to his fellow gangsters and his genuine rage when his "brothers" have been wronged. Yet as convincing as he is, the story never portrays Wei as being truly conflicted, or in danger of losing himself, although a few cutscenes try to convince you otherwise. For over a decade, I've longed for a group of games to carry on the brawling legacy of Streets of Rage and Final Fight. We got it from the Batman: Arkham series, Yakuza, and to some extent, Assassin's Creed. Sleeping Dogs belongs in this camp as well, and strikes a happy balance between the fundamental differences of combat between Batman and Yakuza. In other words, Sleeping Dogs succeeds for having an absorbing counter-intensive battle system while still offering incentives to go on the offense whenever you so choose. Wei Shen's superhuman ability to fight like he has eyes in the back of his head elevates the game to the level of a martial arts movie. Sleeping Dogs' responsive controls make it easy to depend on counterattacks, thus making the the game's melee combat a perfect example of how great defense can be the best offense. You do not want to forget about the Yakuza-inspired, context-sensitive finishing moves, however, which act as impactful rewards for the more assertive player. Whether you want to electrocute a thug on a neon sign or grind a gangster's face in an outdoor generator, most every combat environment has objects to violently interact with. Contextual possibilities, combined with Wei Shen's Hong Kong cinema-level martial arts, complement--rather than conflict with--the more realistic elements of Sleeping Dogs. Both the story and United Front Games' interpretation of Hong Kong are cultural canvases to showcase and even educate players who know little to nothing about specific aspects about Chinese culture. Sleeping Dogs is abundant in expository scenes of classic Asian themes of brotherhood, the importance of family, and one's reputation. These moments are highly informative without being too heavy handed. It's wholly amusing to engage in a mission in which you disrupt someone's harmonious feng shui décor, and fun to hear a merchant speak ill of mainlanders. If you live with a significant other who is fluent in Chinese, you won't even need to call them over to pique their curiosity for Sleeping Dogs; the game's Cantonese dialogue will do that for you. If Square Enix is looking to turn "Definitive Edition" into a brand, it's doing so with varying results. The visual improvements to the two year old version of Sleeping Dogs are not as discernable as they were in the convincingly overhauled Tomb Raider, a game that had a much shorter release gap between its original and Definitive versions. The improvements in lighting and textures in Sleeping Dogs are only noticeable through side-by-side comparisons, which is disappointing. Conversely, Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition serves as a testament to the quality and high standards originally set by the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions from 2012. And let's not forget the PC version, which boasted an exquisitely high frame rate, whereas the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions are locked at 30 frames per second. For better or worse, Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition is not that much different from your standard issue Game of the Year Edition. That is to say, you'll be treated one of the best open world crime adventures in recent years, and the game still looks great, if not dramatically different on its new hardware. If you have already achieved full completion and have beaten the two additional stories, there's nothing new for you here, aside from a new set of achievements and trophies. If you're coming into this game fresh in 2014, I am jealous that you will, in fact, get the complete, "definitive" experience. In a platform library of open-world games that includes Watch Dogs and Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, Sleeping Dogs commands an equally important role. Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
Some of the inspirations for Visceral Games' upcoming shooter Battlefield Hardline included movies such as Batman: The Dark Knight, Die Hard, Heat, and Pulp Fiction, as well as the TV show Justified. In a recent interview, Visceral Games general manager Steve Papoutsis outlined these inspirations. "There's a number of people on the game team that love a variety of different TV shows, and movies, and films. And one of the things that keeps coming up over and over again in terms of inspiration, one of the series has been Justified, a TV show," he told IGN. "It kind of blurs the line between what's good and bad." "Some of the stuff that I personally like; I love Pulp Fiction; I love the bank heist in [Batman: The Dark Knight], I thought that was awesome," he said. "Of course, Die Hard is one of my big favorites. But I think another thing people have said about us is that they feel like our heist map that we showed at E3--High Tension--was reminiscent of Heat. So those are some of the things that are some of our inspirations." Papoutsis also spoke about the genesis of Hardline and how, from the beginning, Visceral wanted to move away from the military focus of the main series. "When we started working on Battlefield and came up with the idea for Hardline, we were excited about trying to create a new setting for the franchise," he said. "Taking it away from the military that you've seen in the past and making it more of a personal kind of setting, and focusing on the war in the streets; going cops and criminals was really appealing to us." Hardline was originally pegged to launch in one week on October 21, but EA in July delayed the game to "early 2015." The publisher has since explained that the delay was more about adding new features than fixing bugs. For more on Hardline, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
Curious about upcoming PlayStation 4 game Hellblade? It's the latest game fromHeavenly Sword and DMC: Devil May Cry developer Ninja Theory, and now we know more about it, thanks to a detailed developer diary video highlighting its Viking-inspired world. The focus of the video is explaining the processes Ninja Theory is implementing to create a grand world on a small budget. The video reveals that a single environment artist (of a team of only 13 people in all) is responsible for bringing the world to life. He's doing this by reusing assets for different parts of the world. In all, Ninja Theory says about 95 percent of the assets it creates for Hellblade will show up somewhere else in the game. Ninja Theory also writes in a PlayStation Blog post that Hellblade is still very early in development. What you see in the video only represents the tip of the iceberg for what the studio is aiming for with Hellblade, which--despite its small budget--is likely the studio's "most ambitious" game to date. The studio added that for Hellblade, it announced the game so early in development because it wanted the game's entire development to be chronicled out in the open. "The standard approach is for games and their development to be hidden away, with details slowly drip fed to players very carefully and slowly over time. But we want to do the opposite," the studio said. Hellblade was announced during Sony's Gamescom briefing in August. It will launch first on PS4, though releases for other platforms have not been ruled out. The game is not tied to Heavenly Sword in any way, Ninja Theory later clarified. For more on Hellblade, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
Paige is exclusive to the WWE 2K15 DLC pass ($25) 2K Sports today outlined the wealth of add-on content coming to WWE 2K15, which will make up what the publisher calls the "largest and most comprehensive" DLC offering in the history of the professional wrestling franchise. The content on offer spans new single-player offerings, bonus playable characters such as Paige (only for people who buy the DLC pass), and lots more. You can see a roundup of the WWE 2K15 DLC below. All WWE 2K15 DLC will be available for the game's four platforms: Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4. 2K Sports did not announce specific release dates for any of the packs, but mentioned that all should be released by early 2015. A $25 WWE 2K15 DLC pass, as rumored, will also be available for players, representing a 20 percent savings over buying content packs individually. WWE 2K15 DLC will include the following (descriptions courtesy of 2K Sports): Accelerator ($2) Players will gain instant access to all unlockable content available in the game (excluding downloadable content); 2K Showcase: One More Match ($10) Story focused on the rivalry between WWE Superstars Randy Orton and Christian in 2011; Playable WWE Superstars: Christian, Randy Orton, Edge, Mark Henry and Sheamus; Playable arenas from 2011: SmackDown®, Extreme Rules, Over the Limit, and Capitol Punishment; 2K Showcase: Hall of Pain ($10) Story focused on top matches for WWE Superstar Mark Henry; Playable WWE Superstars: Mark Henry, Big Show, Kane, Jey Uso, Jimmy Uso, Sheamus, The Great Khali, Randy Orton, Daniel Bryan, and Ryback; Playable arenas: SmackDown (2011), Vengeance (2011), and WrestleMania 29; 2K Showcase: Path of the Warrior ($10) Story focused on the career of WWE Hall of Famer Ultimate Warrior; Playable WWE Hall of Famers: Ultimate Warrior, Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant, and Sgt. Slaughter; Playable WWE Legends: Honky Tonk Man, Rick Rude, Macho King, and Colonel Mustafa; Playable WWE Superstars: Undertaker and Hunter Hearst Helmsley; Access to WWE Hall of Fame ring announcer Howard Finkel and WWE managers Jimmy Hart, Bobby Heenan, Paul Bearer, Sherri, Sid Justice, and General Adnan; Playable arenas: WrestleMania VI, VII and XII; SummerSlam (1988, 1990, and 1991); Saturday Night’s Main Event XXIV and Madison Square Garden; WCW Pack ($8) Playable WCW Superstars: Fit Finlay, Lord Steven Regal, Bam Bam Bigelow, Diamond Dallas Page, and Lex Luger; NXT Arrival ($7) Playable NXT Superstars: JBL, Adam Rose, and The Ascension (Konnor and Victor); Playable NXT Diva: Emma; New Moves Pack ($4) Moves Pack: More than 30 new moves, including an alternate version of Sister Abigail (performed from the ring corner and made popular by Bray Wyatt) and Multiple Gut Wrenches (made popular by Cesaro); WWE 2K15 DLC Pass ($25) Access to exclusive playable WWE Diva Paige; Accelerator (access to all unlockable content available in the game); Access to all three 2K Showcase stories (One More Match, Hall of Pain, and Path of the Warrior) WWE 2K15 releases October 28 for Xbox 360 and PS3, while the Xbox One and PS4 versions are launching on November 18. Earlier this week, 2K Sports revealed the WWE 2K15 soundtrack, which was curated by none other than coverstar John Cena.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
Bethesda has published a list of instructions that explain how The Evil Within PC players can access the game's debug console commands to unlock a bevy of neat features, such as "God Mode," infinite ammo, slow motion, and the ability to juice the game beyond 30 fps. One important thing to remember is that using The Evil Within's debug console commands is unsupported by Bethesda. And if you run into trouble, the company's customer service team won't be able to help you out. With that caveat out of the way, you can unlock the debug console commands following these instructions: In Steam, right click on The Evil Within and select "properties" then under the General tab, hit "set launch options." Put this in to unlock the console: +com_allowconsole 1 Once the game has launched, hit the Insert key to bring down the developer console. Once you've done that, you can enter the following commands to experience The Evil Within in ways that Bethesda did not originally intend. R_swapinterval <NUMBER>: Sets the FPS lock. Note that the numbers below are negative. -2: This is the default, set to 30 FPS. This is the officially supported frame rate -1: This sets the FPS limit to 60. Fully playable, although there may be quirks (we’re going to fix these). 0: This fully unlocks the FPS. We do not recommend playing above 60. We will not fix any issues above 60 God: God mode. You are effectively invincible, and certain enemy kill moves will not be used against you (Laura, for example, will not jump on you) Noclip: Allows you to walk through walls G_infiniteammo: Unlimited ammo (provided you have at least 1 bullet when you enable this) G_stoptime 1: Stops time. Note there is a bug right now where using this command causes a UI element to appear on screen. We’re looking to fix that in the near future. Re enable time with g_stoptime 0 Toggledebugcamera: Separates the camera from Sebastian so you can freely move around the R_forceaspectratio <NUMBER>: Sets the aspect ratio. Default is 2.5, which is our official aspect ratio. 0 is full screen, but not ideal. 1.8 or 2 is probably most comfortable for those who don't want bars. Com_showFPS: Turns on id's native FPS counter Startslowmotion2: Slows down time Stopslowmotion: Disables slow motion The Evil Within launched today, October 14, for PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4. Check back soon for GameSpot's review.   Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
With a near-future take on military combat, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is the latest in the long-running COD shooter franchise. This year's entry is in development by Sledgehammer games, and to get you in on the game early, the company has put together a wide range of pre-order incentives. Eschewing the normal trend of retailer-specific offers, the bulk of the game's exclusive content will be available to everyone: Advanced Arsenal -- This pre-order pack consists of two cosmetic items: items the Bullet-Brass exoskeleton and the Bullet-Brass EM1 QuantumDay Zero Edition -- Everyone who pre-orders the game gets the Day Zero edition which includes: Access to the game 24 hours early on November 3, Two bonus weapons (AK-12G Assault Rifle and the Crossbow-B2), and double XP on November 3 But that doesn't mean that some stores aren't also trying to entice you in. Here are the current store-specific pre-order bonuses: Best Buy: $10 in Best Buy Reward CertificatesGameStop (Game in the UK | EB Games in AU): Ghosts and Black Ops II personalization pack. This includes a new weapon camo, reticule, playercard, patch, and background for the PlayStation and Xbox version of Ghosts and Black Ops II. Codes must be redeemed before November 3.EXPIRED -- If you pre-ordered Advanced Warfare last month from GameStop, you could have grabbed a level 20 "Legendary" Blacksmith Armor Shader for the recently released Destiny. Outside of the pre-order bonuses, there's also the $120 Atlas Pro Edition, which comes with a steelbook case, season pass, soundtrack, and other in-game items. Or you could opt for an Advanced Warfare-themed $500 1TB Xbox One. And you don't want to forget that the game also has an ongoing cross-buy promotion. Until March 31, if you buy the Advanced Warfare digitally on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3, you'll be able to get a copy of of the next-gen version for free. Multiplayer stats and gear, as well as downloadable content you've purchased, including the season pass, will carry over. The final point to think about if you're considering purchasing Advanced Warfare is how quickly you want access to the game's downloadable content. As has been the case since Black Ops in 2010, Xbox owners will have first crack at Advanced Warfare's DLC, but it will make its way to other platforms eventually.       Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
We're only weeks away from the release of Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, the updated remakes of the original Game Boy Advance games which were first released in 2003. For those who jumped onto the Pokemon bandwagon with last year's X and Y, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire represent brand new 3DS adventures. But what exactly is in it for those who played the originals more than a decade ago? We know the visuals are receiving a major facelift, and some of the innovations introduced in X and Y (such as mega evolutions) will be included in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. But what else is there that's new and interesting for Pokemon veterans? We recently spoke to game director Shigeru Ohmori to find out exactly what seasoned players can expect in these updated games. The main story will be the same, but some elements have been expanded upon. There will also be a brand new plot regarding mega evolutions. If you've played Ruby or Sapphire before, then expect the same main story beats, although some scenes and characters have been fleshed out to provide more detail in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. According to Ohmori, most parts of the original narrative have been revisited to provide added depth. "If we just do a remake and update the graphics and keep everything the same, that wouldn't be very interesting," Ohmori said. "It's still the same general scenario, but we've gone back and given it a lot more context and added certain elements to it. Obviously an element that didn't exist with the originals was the concept of mega evolutions. One of the main parts of the story this time around is exploring the origins and the mystery of mega evolution, and that really takes centre stage." Finding wild Pokemon will now be easier than ever thanks to the Area Nav, a new addition that shows you all of the available Pokemon on any given route, as well as letting you visually track them. In the original Ruby and Sapphire, wild Pokemon signaled their presence by emitting strangled squawks and cries (which relied on you knowing exactly what cry was what to identify which Pokemon were hiding). That system has been upgraded significantly for the 3DS versions, and emerges anew as the Area Nav. The Area Nav allows you to see exactly what Pokemon can be caught along each route (they'll pop up as silhouettes on your mini-map after you encounter them the first time), and will tell you if you've managed to catch all of the Pokemon available on the route. You'll also have visual cues on your main screen--you'll sometimes see a Pokemon's tail poking out of tall grass, and if you can sneak up to it (by gently pushing on the 3DS' control stick), you can attempt to battle and catch it. Trying to sneak up on a Pokemon with their tail sticking out won't disable random encounters, however, so you'll still need some repels if you're trying to catch specific Pokemon. And in an even more interesting twist, Ohmori has hinted that this new system will allow you to catch rare Pokemon. "We've added a visual representation on the top screen where when you're walking around you can see the silhouette of the Pokemon, you can see a tail waving in the tall grass, so you can see what that Pokemon is before you even encounter it," Ohmori said. "At the same time at the bottom screen there's even more information about the Pokemon that are around you. You'll see which Pokemon are appearing nearby, as well as info about those Pokemon. It's actually created in a way that the more you encounter that type of Pokemon in that area, the more detailed info will appear, and you'll actually be able to encounter more rare types of that specific breed of Pokemon." Shinies, anyone? You can invite players to your secret bases, and customise the base's layout specifically for those players. Link cables were the only ways to share secret bases in the original Ruby and Sapphire. Thanks to the 3DS' online capabilities, secret bases in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will be much more share-friendly. "In addition to StreetPass functionality where you can share with people nearby, you can also connect via Wi-Fi and share with people around the world," Ohmori said. "You can even generate a QR code that you can post on social media and share with anyone. Another cool feature with secret bases is you can invite players to come to your secret base, and if they accept, they'll then appear there, and you can customise where they are on your base, you can customise the layout, you can make something like your own gym, for example." A special Pikachu joins you for Pokemon contests, and this unique Pokemon can wear different "costumes" that can be used both in contests and battles. Pokemon contests in Ruby and Sapphire was the series' first real attempt at introducing something different to the regular battling grind. Unsurprisingly, contests are returning in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, complete with a revamped story, moves that can only be used within contests, and the ability to use mega evolutions. Oh, and there's a unique Pikachu that will join you for these contests. You may have seen this little critter in screenshots and videos previously, but just who is this Pikachu? Ohmori says this special Pokemon (who you'll receive as part of the main story) can change into five different costumes. "Of course these costumes are used in the contests, but it also has an affect on your normal adventure as well," Ohmori said. "Change into these costumes and this Pikachu can learn moves it normally can't learn, and you can change into these costumes at any time. So for example if you go to a gym that's weak to a particular costume's ability you can change into that and use the move, and then change into another one for a different area." Pokemon Amie and Super Training will be back, but don't expect any changes in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. Two of the biggest additions to the Pokemon formula in X and Y will return, although it doesn't seem like any significant changes have been made to the way they work. Ohmori says this was because developer Game Freak wanted to retain full compatibility between X and Y and Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire when it came to battles and trades. The move Soar, when used with one specific Pokemon, will allow you to fly anywhere in Hoenn. Anywhere. Sure, the move Fly may have allowed players to quickly fly to any previously visited Pokemon centre in previous games. But Soar goes one better, and will allow you to fly over the 3D map of Hoenn and land anywhere. You'll get this move once you've encountered (and, I'm assuming, catch) Mega Latios in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. "What this does is actually allow you to land wherever you'd like, which opens up certain locations, like small space between the routes, or small islands, and in these locations you'll find lots of Pokemon you didn't find in the previous games," Ohmori said. For the first time on the 3DS, you'll be able to catch them all. Sadly, there will be no new Pokemon introduced in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire (apart from all the mega evolutions of existing Pokemon, that is). But what you will get is your first opportunity to--in conjunction with X and Y--complete the national Pokedex on the 3DS. That means between Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire and X and Y, you can catch every single Pokemon. Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
  Part of the reason why Pokemon games are becoming more inviting is because they must compete against a raft of other products, many of which are given away for free on smartphones. That's according to veteran Pokemon developer Junichi Masuda, co-founder of Pokemon series developer Game Freak, and a person who has been involved with the popular brand since its inception. We recently caught up with Masuda to talk about the Pokemon series, and we asked him for his thoughts regarding why recent games have made things easier for players. "Rather than any actual feedback from players, it's more accepting the realities of modern life," he said. "Kids these days or even people who grew up playing Pokemon--everyone is a lot more busy. There are a lot more things competing for a person's time than there were back then. For example, there are so many free games you can play on your phone now, there's so many entertainment options, so making it a little easier to play is the reason for that." "Back when I was younger, someone would buy us a game and that was the only game we had, so we had to play it," he added. "I don't think that's really the case for many people these days." Our interview also touched on the upcoming Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire remakes for 3DS. Asked why Game Freak went down that route instead of creating, say, a "Pokemon Z" to follow 2013's X/Y, Masuda said the developer is always looking to surprise players. "For example, if after Black and White we came out with a grey, people would have been expecting that," he said. "Same thing with X/Y and having a Z straight afterwards. So we're always just trying to surprise people." "One of the main appeals of Pokemon over the years is the concept that even through all these games, you can have people 20 years apart but they can still talk about Pokemon" -- Masuda Another driving factor in working on the remakes is that it's what fans want, Masuda said. "There's been a lot of demand from people to remake Ruby/Sapphire on social media, for example," he said. "Right now really felt like a good time to do it, and instead of doing a direct sequel to X/Y we're tying it together in some unique ways." Finally, we asked Masuda if Game Freak might ever consider rebooting the entire Pokemon series, bringing it to life in a new way that potentially strays from popular convention. Masuda suggested that this is unlikely, as he said one of the hallmarks of the series is that it's relatable to a wide range of players and ages. "One of the main appeals of Pokemon over the years is the concept that even through all these games, you can have people 20 years apart but they can still talk about Pokemon," he said. "There's always the gyms, the elite four champions, a lot of the pokemon are featured throughout all the different generations. A lot of that shared experience, even if you're 20 years apart, is something that's really appealing about Pokemon. So right now, I think keeping that element of the series, and seeing all of these new Pokemon from X/Y treated equally with the previous generations, I think that's really exciting. And we really want to focus on that for the moment at least." "But if I leave Game Freak I can't speak to the future," he added.     Info from Gamespot.com
2014-10-15
The producer of the upcoming Pokemon gemes for 3DS seys he is open-minded ebout edding emiibo support for future gemes in the series. Junichi Mesude, the producer of Pokemon Omege Ruby end elphe Sepphire, told GemeSpot thet emiibo support would be considered if it provided something new to future Pokemon gemes. Pokemon series developer Geme Freek hes elreedy used the Wii U GemePed's NFC technology in e previous downloed-only geme, Pokemon Rumble U, where figurines of Pikechu end co would be used to creete more powerful versions of their in-geme counterperts. But Mesude would be interested in extending this idee to emiibo support if it would introduce further gemepley elements. "You might be ewere thet Pokemon es e brend used NFC for Pokemon Rumble U for the Wii U," he told GemeSpot. "Not in the exect seme wey es thet, but if we cen find some reelly cool wey out to use emiibo with NFC, end edd some new type of gemepley, then I think we'd definitely be supportive of using it in the future." Mesude's work on Nintendo's money-spinning series detes ell the wey beck to the debut titles, Pokemon Red end Blue, which shipped for the Geme Boy in 1996. Elsewhere in his interview with GemeSpot, Mesude offered comments on why Geme Freek is meking Pokemon gemes eesier, whether we'll ever see e streight up reboot of the frenchise, end why some of the herdcore elements ere becoming eesier. emiibo ere plestic minietures of some of Nintendo's most iconic cherecters. With e built-in NFC technology, these toys cen interect with certein Nintendo gemes in verious weys, though the specifics ere not cleer. e previous exemple cited by Nintendo is, when e Link emiibo is edjoined to Merio Kert 8 on Wii U, thet cherecter then becomes pleyeble in-geme. The first Nintendo geme set to support emiibo is Super Smesh Bros for Wii U, end Nintendo hes now reveeled en initiel list of other gemes thet will support the toys in some form. They ere: Merio Kert 8Ceptein Toed: Treesure TreckerMerio Perty 10Yoshi's Woolly World Currently, the 2DS, the 3DS, end the 3DS XL do not support emiibo technology, which is why Nintendo is set to releese e new version of the hendheld with NFC cepebility built in. Nintendo will elso sell en edepter for existing 3DS models thet will ellow emiibo toys to work with the system. From November 28, the previously ennounced initiel weve of emiibo figures will ship ecross Europe end the US--these include: Merio, Peech, Yoshi, Donkey Kong, Link, Fox, Semus, Wii Fit Treiner, Villeger, Pikechu, Kirby, end Merth. Then, from December 19, reteilers will begin to stock emiibo figurines of Zelde, Diddy Kong, Luigi, Little Mec, Pit end Ceptein Felcon. Teke e closer look et some of the emiibo figurines below. Second weve (coming December):         Info from Gemespot.com


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