Mojang, maker of Minecraft, is now $2.5 billion richer, thanks to Microsoft. Hearthstone just registered its 20 millionth player. And Saints Row's creative director, Steve Jaros, has joined the Valve team (Half-Life 3 confirmed?).
What are you playing this weekend?
Sean Cahill, staff writer, @GN_Punk
I'm about as hooked on Destiny as it gets. Running around the moon and killing things with a sniper rifle is fantastic. I'm excited. The game is quite fun for me and, while the story does suck, I don't care. I didn't even care about the Halo storyline. It was all about ending aliens' lives with a gigantic weapon.
Jeremy Duff, senior staff writer, @Duff3c
It is going to be a busy weekend in the Duff household. First off, from a domestic point of view, it is Fall Cleaning Time, which means a huge yard sale. However, you can rest assured that I will be lugging a monitor, an ethernet cord, and my PS4 out to the porch to occupy my downtime with some legendary gear farming in Destiny and some raiding parties for the newly launched level 26 raids. Plus, I have to power up all of my Disney Infinity characters with their new powers in 2.0, which came in this week. I think that I am going to use the toy box and build an EXP arena that endlessly spawns bad guys to streamline that process.
Charles Husemann, editor-in-chief, @chusemann
I wrapped the solo campaign for Destiny this week and now it's time to dive into some of the strikes and maybe even attempt the Vault of Glass raid that opened up earlier this week. I'm still debating if I want to start a new character or just start leveling the Defender subclass of my Titan.
Randy Kalista, staff writer, @RandyKalista
In preparation for a preview event in good old Las "Sin City" Vegas, I'm digging into the crates for my copy of the original Assassin's Creed. Lengthy names aside, I want to see just how far we've come from Altair Ibn-La'Ahad to Unity's upcoming Arno Victor Dorian.
Jeff Kintner, staff writer, @JKTerrezas
Now that I'm done playing The Waiting Game while Dead Rising 3 installed on my computer (which took the better part of an afternoon), I'm grabbing whatever can be used as a weapon and using it to cut my way through the biggest undead hordes I've ever seen. I also made a major bureaucratic mistake in Clockwork Empires this week. A certain colonist had been having a few too many conversations about cultist activities. Upon further investigation, I found that she wasn't on the manifest. After dispatching some frontier justice, I realized that she was just a newly arrived Explorer (a worker class I haven't encountered yet) that was getting caught up on the gossip of the settlement. Whoops.
The weekend is upon us and that means that there will likely be an increase in traffic in the Crucible. Bungie is adding a special playlist to the Crucible in Destiny this weekend int he form of combined arms. We’re talking about all out war with tons of vehicles. This playlist will focus in fearing your fireteam up with some serious hardware both in the form of different vehicles and more heavy ammo (for taking them out).
As usual, this will also mean more crucible gear, marks, and rep can be headed your way if you put in the time. This playlist is going to be available until Sunday night, so get in there while it is up for some heavy hitting battles.
Gearbox created one of the most beloved shooter franchises of the last console generation with Borderlands, and now they're trying it again this console generation with Battleborn. They're calling Battleborn a co-op hero shooter. It's another FPS with a co-op campaign - but this time, it's 5-player co-op - and you can see it in action below.
A few months ago, I did a preview for Heavy Bullets by Terri Vellmann while it was still in Early Access, and it was like all of my neon-tinted FPS dreams from the '90s came to pass. Yesterday it finally left the purgatory of Early Access and was fully released on Steam and the Humble Store. It also has the opening week sale going on, so you can pick it up for 15% off the normal price of $9.99 ($8.49) until September 25th. Heavy Bullets is easily in my top five indie games of 2014 so far. If you like what you see in my preview above and the launch trailer below, you should think about picking it up.
I'm a World War II (and US Civil War) buff, so when World of Warships was announced I was intrigued, and I wondered how they would apply the huge naval battles of that era to the model of limited interactions and limited participants we've seen in World of Tanks and World of Warplanes . It seems removing fuel from the resource pool entirely and making planes able to fly unlimited distances and time so long as they have ammo left were a couple of ways they've worked through that. Though it removes some realism from the game, it does make sense by reducing the strategic areas you have to focus on. The video focuses mostly on the Japanese navy, with some general points about the US navy, and ship types in general.
As a games journalist, when you see a game you genuinely want to play, and want to like, and have the information to provide to the public it can be difficult to convey that you're not in any way shilling for a company or product, because it's easy to misinterpret interest and excitement for a product as something else. But I can tell you for certain I'm excited to play Crimes and Punishments, and each trailer released has only heightened that. I'm a fan of the classic detective, but I've never played a Holmes game that captures his abilities and his flaws in the way the TV has with Sherlock or even his diagnostic embodiment in House, M.D. I'm hoping to see this game fare better than it's predecessors, but we will let the evidence decide.
Microsoft would like you not to forget they used to make a great console (or still do, I guess, it's just not their front line box anymore), and that it's both less expensive than the Xbox One AND now bundled with some extra stuff to make purchases more enticing (as if a fully functioning copy of NHL 15 vs. whatever EA calls that thing they made for next gen isn't enough). Frankly, the Blue version from Walmart looks really cool, and the bundle is certainly priced to move. Sales figures from Holiday will be very telling about the adoption rate of XB1 vs. 360.
The numbers are in, and Crusader Kings II has now sold 1 million copies. It took a couple years, but that's a breakthrough for a company like Paradox Interactive, a publishers that caters almost exclusively to hardcore grand strategists.
I was one of those 1 million sales. Unfortunately, since 2012 when the game launched, I still have no idea how to play that game. I gave it a couple good ol' college tries. And it's just never clicked for me, even though I've never wanted to understand a game more than Crusader Kings II.
In addition to the 1 million base units, players have also snatched up 7 million bits and pieces of downloadable content and expansion packs. That's nuts. Paradox shared a few more statistics: CK II is played by an average of 12,500 players every day, 100,000 players every month. And the average CK II player has banked 99 hours of game time. That's also nuts.
Yet another expansion, Charlemagne, was announced last month and is still officially "coming soon."
When I was in California recently to preview Skylanders: Trap Team I got to check out the console and tablet versions of the game, but not the 3DS version. Strangely that fact never really hit me until now, but I think I may know why that is: the 3DS version is a bit different than the others.
The 3DS version of Trap Team will feature an all-new adventure with its own levels, locations, and gameplay, as well as a new way to interact with the villains. Once captured you can actually poke, tickle, and spin the villains on the touch screen to kind of interact with them. In addition, there will be fourteen villains that will be exclusive to the 3DS version including two Skylanders that will be exclusive to the 3DS Starter Pack: Gusto and Barkley, the latter of which is the Mini version of Tree Rex from Skylanders Giants.
Whether it's Kaos in the console and tablet versions or the Dream Sheep in the 3DS verison (yes, a sheep, and you thought Mega Man 10 was the only game to have a sheep for a villain), you'll be able to save the Skylands once again on October 5th.