PlayStation 4 and Xbox One officially here, The Last of Us Single-Player DLC Announced, Bioshock Infinite: Burial at Sea DLC pt. 1 released and ex-Game Informer Editor Meagan Marie makes a good impression as a Cosplayer

Check out my PlayStation 4 Launch Experience with “PS4: Gamer on the Ground” Article

Unless you live under a sand dune on Mars or you have that Helen Keller disease, you probably are aware that Sony and Microsoft have both launched their next-gen consoles on Nov 15th (PS4) and Nov 22nd (Xbox One), respectively. Being a gamer requires that you also understand the finer things in life, like how to talk away that mustard stain on your hoodie as canvas paint or know how to camp out and prepare yourself for a midnight system launch. It’s been nearly seven years for Sony and over eight years for Microsoft, so to say these console launches aren’t as exciting as before is underwhelming. Attending the midnight launch of the PlayStation 4 at my local GameStop, there was so much excitement people could hardly contain themselves as we discussed past launches, the games we loved and why I was the only person at the launch who wasn’t actually buying a system (the latter fact is irrelevant guys, BECAUSE I SAY SO). I tried innumerably to convince my fellow gamers to all pool in their funds and buy me a console, but my desperation only compounded matters for the worse and did me no favorable service. My associate who worked at GameStop told me that I had ZERO chance to obtain a unit without first pre-ordering months a go, so I cried and screamed and begged like a child having a temper tantrum, only to be forcefully removed from the premises. “Act your age” everyone said…. “Nobody wants to see a big, fat almost-30 year old man child writhing on the floor in tears” they said… WELL SCREW YOU GUYS!  OK, so maybe I embellished some of the above statements, and I didn’t actually get kicked out… I left of my own accord with dignity. I did return however with a bag full of chocolate because everyone knows gamers can’t resist big bags of snacks…. and was thus welcomed back to the launch party swiftly. “Chocolates for all” I declared! So as the night went on I snapped a few photos when I could and returned during the evening to my local Best Buy with my entourage in tow to play the PS4 demo kiosk and get some intimate, hands-on time with the console myself. Here’s what happened when trying to play first-party launch exclusive “KNACK”:

 

Unfortunately, we were shutdown and ejected by the evil Best Buy Dragon Queen because the legality of filming violates their PR policies. I couldn’t buy a PS4, I don’t know anyone that owns a unit who will let me rebox and unbox to have my own cool unboxing video then play it for hours while they sit and watch (apparently the only person I do know that owned one wanted to play it all for themselves launch day, go figure) so I did the next best thing:  going to a business that owned one with my film crew and using their free generosity to mooch gaming playtime and record it. Can a broke, ambivalent man-child gamer really be blamed for such gratuitous behavior? For my complete “PS4: Gamer on the Ground” article, click on the following link or click on the tab of the same name under the Editorials tab:

https://hiddendefinition.wordpress.com/editorials-essays-and-gamer-girls-just-a-myth-or-do-they-exist/playstation-4-launch-gamer-on-the-ground/

 

The Last of Us Single Player DLC “Left Behind” announced, Ellie a returning character

I have advocated every chance that has come to pass for TLoU to be a Game of the Year frontrunner and with this next DLC pack, scheduled to be released early 2014 my contention only grows stronger. Naughty Dog has confirmed the single-player story DLC for “The Last of Us” will indeed see the return of Ellie as a playable character and in fact, be a prequel to the core games story. It will also introduce the character of Riley, one of Ellie’s best and only friends at the military orphanage where she was being schooled. If you’ve read the Dark House 4-part comic series “American Dreams” then you should have some idea of what to expect, although the DLC is not an exact recreation from the comics story and appears to take place after the events from the last comic and in-between the beginning of the main game. I implore you guys to read “American Dreams” because not only does it offer a great precursor to Ellie’s backstory, but it also serves as a companion piece to the game’s main narrative. Here’s the teaser trailer for the DLC, entitled “Left Behind“:

 

Bioshock: Infinite “Burial at Sea” pt. 1 released

Return to Rapture before it's downfall and see it as in the utopia Andrew Ryan envisioned. Liz seeks out Bookers help as a Private Investigator in "Burial at Sea".

Return to Rapture before it’s downfall and see it as in the utopia Andrew Ryan envisioned. Liz seeks out Bookers help as a Private Investigator in “Burial at Sea”.

The first part of a duo DLC single-player pack for Bioshock: Infinite was released on November 12th for a MSRP of $14.99, or if you have the Season Pass then it’s available digitally as a download now for PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. “Burial at Sea” is a two-part adventure that returns the player to Rapture in it’s glory days before plasmids corrupted the loyal denizens into Splicers and all hell broke loose.  Featuring some new weapons and a whole new story, you’ll play as private investigator Booker DeWitt hired by very more adult, demure persona of Elizabeth in the first part then take over and play as Elizabeth in the second part.

I was really disappointed with the story direction featured in Bioshock: Infinite’s single-player two part DLC “Burial at Sea” and although the concept and the return of Liz and Booker are certainly welcome, it seems so much more could’ve been explored within Infinite’s universe instead of returning to a glorified Rapture. Probably the most intriguing, albeit silent protagonist in a game this year was Infinite’s “Songbird“, the giant mechanical fowl that served as Elizabeth’s frightening ward in the main campaign. For all the lip-service Irrational paid to it’s newest terrifying creation (the collectors edition featured a 12-14” statue of the character and was aptly dubbed “Ultimate Songbird Edition“), Songbird was hardly featured in the core game and ultimately relegated to a minor supporting role. It seems their was so much back story for this character and situational set pieces that could’ve been crafted within a DLC campaign to give Songbird a more involved role. Am I the only one that feels this way? Comment below and speak your mind about what your ideal DLC scenario for Bioshock Infinite would’ve been.

 

Cosplayer Meagan Marie strikes a pose and brings her characters to life

Recently featured on Kotaku’s Fancy Pants (http://kotaku.com/5876329/the-very-best-of-meagan-maries-cosplay/), I knew she looked familiar. Sure enough, flipping through some of my past print editions of “Game Informer” I saw Meagan’s picture appear several times co-mingling with other GI editors, game developers and game industry folks. Not only is she a hell of a writer, but she can cosplay with the best of them. Take a look for your self:

Meagan-Marie_as_Anya-large

Meagan portraying Anya from Gears of War, one of the few female gears that could take down herds of the locust with the boys

 

Meagan as Marie Antoinette, the ill-fated last queen of France and dare I say, one of the original "it-girls" before there even was a Hollywood.

Meagan as Marie Antoinette, the ill-fated last queen of France and dare I say, one of the original “it-girls” before there even was a Hollywood.

If you want to see more of Meagan’s tireless effort to recreate our favorite fictional and non-fictional characters, then go to her website and admire her skill as only us gross, girlfriend-less gamers could; by showering her with lots of praise and stalking her. Just kidding Meagan, all my subjective comments come from a place of gamer love

Meagan Marie’s WordPress Blog:

http://www.meagan-marie.com/

P.S.  You’ve cosplayed titular gaming characters, historical and mythical figures and even sci-fi badasses. But their seems to be one missing from your resume that happens to be my all time favorite gaming character: Samus Aran. Yes, I know it’s been done but there are so many different ways to approach her. A strong female lead when console gaming was still in it’s infancy and female heroines were uncommon, most women in games were relegated to the “damsel in distress” cliches. Her revelation came as a pleasant surprise to most gamers who played through the original Metroid and were expecting anything but. One of the original Nintendo stalwart characters, Samus has always been my favorite and if Nintendo would release a new Metroid game where she resumes the role of the silent, lone-wolf character (no more talking please, Samus spoke enough in “Other M” to last the next three generations of Metroid games), I would instantly go out and buy a Nintendo console just to play it. Just a thought, or rant. Whatever.

 

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 samus_aran_down_after_fight_w_motherbrain

 

metroid_samus_aran_desktop_1024x768_free-wallpaper-38500

First Last of US DLC Pack and new Update released in concert and PS4 Ad blitz started on Monday Night Football and Watch Dogs delayed until Spring 2014

The Last of US DLC “Abandon Territories” Map Pack released along with new game Update v1.05

I have enjoyed TLoU Multiplayer component probably waaaay more than one should, to the point where my bodily secretions have biologically melded with my gaming chair and created a gamer chair-human hybrid. Anyways, this just gives me more of an excuse to keep playing multiplayer and I sincerely regret not having the $10 it costs for this Map Pack or purchasing the Season Pass which includes all Multiplayer and single player DLC releases, present and future. This map pack includes four awesome new maps: Bookstore, Bus Depot, Suburbs and Hometown. Here’s the YouTube video that showcases each map better than I could ever describe it in words:

To go along with the recent DLC release is the v1.05 update that includes an ocean of fixes, multiplayer escalation balancing, interrogation mode changes and even a few single player updates thrown in for good measure. Here’s the complete list of fixes, updates and so on:

GAMEPLAY:

  • Fixed an issue where players on the winning team would occasionally get fully crafted items or machetes from caches, while players on the losing team would get incorrect items.
  • Players should no longer get comeback weapons (pre-crafted molotovs / bombs / purchase weapons) when they are winning by more than a small margin.
  • Fixed the consistency of comeback weapons spawning – there should be less comeback weapons in close matches and more consistent spawning in severely unbalanced matches. Once a player receives comeback weapons, however, they will not receive them again until a certain amount of progress has occurred in the match.
  • 2×4 Spawning logic has been adjusted in Supply Raid and Interrogation:
  • Fixed a bug where it would occasionally be impossible for a player to receive a 2×4 in a game.
  • Reworked the initial 2×4 spawning logic to make the first 2×4 spawn a bit later to balance the escalation of the match.
  • Lowered the overall number of potential 2x4s that could spawn in a match by including weighting based on match progress.
  • The additional hit on modded melee weapons has been moved from Brawler Level 1 to Level 2, and the health gain from melee hits moved from Level 2 to 1.
  • Added a Parts bonus for late joiners, based on when you join a match in progress. This bridges the gap between players who started from the beginning of the game and might have a Parts advantage over the late joiner.
  • When late-joining beyond the first 2 minutes that match will no longer count towards any clan progress or missions.
  • Fixed an issue on Checkpoint and Lakeside that had locations where some items could not be picked up.
  • Made a fix to prevent players from being able to climb the tilted flag pole on the High School map.
  • Fixed an issue with level graphics dropping out on The Dam.

INTERROGATION MODE:

  • Games no longer end in ties unless both teams are on the same section of the unlocking process. If one team has more interrogations than the other, that team will win the match.
  • The additional parts bonus for winning by a large margin is only awarded when the lockbox is fully unlocked. Otherwise only the standard win bonus is awarded.
  • Killcard now correctly describes whether your character was executed or interrogated.
  • Fire on the ground (from a Molotov) now damages the player when they attempt to unlock the lockbox and will properly interrupt the unlock process.
  • Sounds have been added to the Interrogation animation.
  • Fixed a bug where the end-of-match music was not playing in Interrogation mode.

TECHNICAL FIXES:

  • Intro speech should no longer occasionally be heard twice at the start of the game.
  • A flashing exclamation mark will be shown on DLC option for when new items are added.

SINGLE PLAYER:

  • Tweaks to a couple of art assets in the game.

Sony debuts PS4 Advert during Monday Night Football

To remind all you broke-ass gamers and spoiled-ass young gamers who just have to scream into their parents ears the word “want” to get one that the PS4 is seriously like less then 30 days from arrival, here’s a commercial I’m sure we will all be seeing a lot more of over the next several weeks that will painfully remind us all how much we “want” it:

The commercial features two male opponents dueling out in various different gaming themes while singing to Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day”. The first theme revolves around a hack-n-slash, RPG type of environment while the other two make quite clear what games they are referencing. The second theme is analogous to developer Evolution’s first-party launch title Driveclub while the third theme is a clear, not so subtle reference to Killzone Shadow Fall. So far, Microsoft’s marketing has yet to really pander to the hardcore gamer as Sony has pushed for, but MS still has over a month to release adverts that aren’t related to watching the NFL on various devices including the Xbox One.

 

Ubisoft fesses up to delaying multi-platform behemoth Watch Dogs until Spring of 2014

 

Ubisoft has come clean and let it’s fanbase know that their multi-platform release of Watch Dogs, which is coming out for both current gen and next-gen platforms needs further polish, according to Ubisoft. They did the exact same thing with Rayman Legends, which originally was scheduled to be a Wii U exclusive and switched to multi-platform during the course of the “polish” development phase and the game was all the better for it. However, this scenario is quite different, seeing how Watch Dogs is scheduled to be released for every conceivable gaming platform that exists on mother earth. Perhaps Ubisoft realized they already had their work cut out for them with Assassins Creed 4: Black Flag which also hits every conceivable gaming platform this fall, including next-gen giants PS4 and Xbox One and decided they needed a little more personal time before Watch Dogs went gold. I don’t blame them, in fact I implore Ubisoft for it. Typically when a high-profile, hyped game is delayed it’s for good reason; to make something that the developer feels is already quite good, then take the time to refine it further, adding new features and trimming the fat that wasn’t necessary. Here’s hoping, at least.

BEYOND: Two Souls Review in progress, New PS3 Releases and PS4 won’t support Bluetooth Headsets out-of-the-box

Beyond: Two Souls, the, last true great character and story driven PS3 exclusive for this generation?

Quantic Dreams curtain call for the PS3 has polarized gamers, critics and news outlets a like. I'm currently about to start the long, arduous process of playing through David Cage's latest attempt at combining conventional game interactivity with cinema-style writing and actors with extraordinary results. Visually, the game is probably the prettiest thing available for Sony's console and it should be, as Cage and company have had years to develop the engine, assets and mo-cap technology that take great advantage of multifaceted Cell processor.

Quantic Dreams curtain call for the PS3 has polarized gamers, critics and news outlets a like. I’m currently about to start the long, “arduous” process of playing through David Cage’s latest attempt at combining conventional game interactivity with cinema-style writing and actors that hopefully achieve extraordinary results. Visually, the game is probably the prettiest thing available for Sony’s console and it should be, as Cage and company have had years to develop the engine, assets and mo-cap technology that take great advantage of the multifaceted Cell processor.

The PlayStation 3 has had a great run, and it’s still not over with. Sony has publicly stated that the PS3 is meant to have a 10-year life span, which is entirely feasible as Sony supported their PS2 while the PlayStation 3 faced multiple first-party software delays, extreme ineptitude with it’s online support and sub-par multi-platform releases. The Wii outsold the Wii U consistently month after month when Nintendo’s new console got off to a rocky start, thanks to an absurd amount of first party software delays and an abundance of third parties choosing not to release their multi-platform titles for Nintendo’s next-gen console. While Nintendo recently announced they have discontinued manufacturing Wii consoles, It’s no surprise then that a month from now when the PlayStation 4 comes to town, PS3 owners should expect the same level of support they’ve been receiving for years from Sony. Nintendo still has the 3DS and the Wii U will get a boost this holiday with some strong first-party support, and while Microsoft doesn’t exactly have a strong track record of supporting their previous console iterations, they should acknowledge that their are still somewhere in the neighborhood of 70+ million households with XBOX 360’s. Eventually it previous-generation will drop off as the PS4 and Xbox One gradually takes their place, but there will still be a strong level of support from Sony. However, while  multi-platform titles are a no-brainer to see releases on both last-gen and next-gen PlayStation consoles, what we may not continue to see much more of is first-party exclusives for the PS3. Beyond: Two Souls is a huge first-party release for Sony, simply because it may be the last PS3 exclusive outside of Gran Turismo 6 to be released for awhile.

Sony will concentrate most of it’s efforts to shifting it’s first-party studios from the out-dated Cell-powered PS3 and acclimating their prized studios with the much more developer friendly x86 8-Core AMD powered PS4. Typically, the first batch of games for a new console are watershed titles; games that players will recognize and instantly be attracted to. Sony, however, has chosen to release two brand new IP’s in Knack and Drive Club. The only recognizable franchise is Killzone: Shadow Fall which has always been a show-off title for Sony’s platforms. The sandbox shooter will take advantage of the PS4’s new touchscreen on the Dual Shock 4 controller and the integrated mic. However, Shadow Fall’s most significant contribution will probably have nothing to do with gameplay at all, but instead will be the title that demonstrates what the new horsepower Sony has under their sleek new parallelogram-shaped box is capable of: Particle effects, larger depth of field, higher resolutions running at a solid 60 fps, high-res textures, background UI computations with the “SHARE” button…. etc. Shadow Fall looks to be a visually stunning game and while the Killzone franchise has never reached the level of success like Microsoft’s HALO series, on launch day that won’t matter because Microsoft doesn’t have Halo, or any new exclusive FPS to compete directly with Shadow Fall. Sony can simply win by default, as Microsoft did back in 2006 when it released the XBOX 360 a year a head of Sony’s PS3. MS showed up to the party first, and many gamers didn’t feel it was worth the wait for a console that was more expensive and included extra features they didn’t care about (ie: the Blu-ray Drive, Micro SD slots, four USB slots; although as a retrospective Sony clearly made the right move implementing BD as Blu-Ray has become the go-to replacement for DVDs, and as the price continually dropped for the PS3, gamers saw that owning a game machine that included a BD drive and a bevy of great exclusives was a clear win-win choice).

Titles like Beyond, Heavy Rain, The Last of Us, Ni No Kuni, Uncharted, Little Big Planet, Journey, Puppeteer, Ratchet and Clank, Gran Turismo, Resistance, Killzone, WipeOut, Metal Gear Solid 4, Kingdom Hearts Remix, Persona 3, 4 (and hopefully 5) show that Sony clearly has a broad selection of first-party content and clearly aren’t afraid to take chances with more daring content. As long as Sony can keep the great exclusive content coming, the PS4 should be just as, if not more successful than it’s predecessor. Here’s hoping that my play-through of Beyond: Two Souls leaves a lasting impression on me like all the great aforementioned Sony exclusive content. Oh and by the way, Team Ico, if you’re still out there, please let us know if the “The Last Guardian” is really still in development or it has been sucked into the gaming abyss of lost titles, otherwise known as vaporware. PS3, PS4, PS Vita, I don’t care at this point anymore- JUST RELEASE IT FOR ONE OF SONY’S PLATFORMS ALREADY!

New multi-platform and exclusive PS3 releases that you shouldn’t pass up

A couple of awesome re-releases have come to pass this October. First and foremost, if you haven’t yet played Borderlands 2 or found reason to buy it yet, Borderlands 2 GOTY Edition  (released October 8th in NA) contains all the DLC packs on disc that were released for the title over the past year (there were like 6 or 7 DLC packs for this game, SERIOUSLY) along with the crucial update which raises the level cap and two new playable character classes. I have easily put well over 80-100 hours into BL2, so I traded in my old copy towards the GOTY Edition because I know i’ll be playing the new content and maxing out my character class again.

Released Oct 8th, BL2 GOTY includes over $100 worth of DLC and other awesome goodies for the massive FPSRPG

Released Oct 8th, BL2 GOTY includes over $100 worth of DLC on disc and other awesome goodies for the massive FPSRPG

Another great GOTY Edition released October 8th was Dishonored Game of the Year Edition which includes all the awesome DLC packs ON DISC released for the critically acclaimed Stealth-FPS hybrid. Again, if you have yet to play this title here’s a great reason to pick it up. At only $40 brand new, Dishonored GOTY Edition is a great addition to any gamers collection who is looking for a serious FPS challenge.

Corvo returns to wreck havoc on those who wronged him in the GOTY Edition which contains all DLC packs on disc. The total pack is a very lean $40.

Corvo returns to wreck havoc on those who wronged him in the GOTY Edition which contains all DLC packs on disc. The total pack is a very lean $40.

And last but not least, Capcom Essentials is a collection of Capcom games this generation. Released also October 8th that includes 5, yes FIVE full-fledged signature releases from Capcom this console cycle. Included in the bundle: Dead Rising 2, Resident Evil 6, Devil May Cry 4, Super Street Fighter 4 and a download code for Megaman 10. I’m not sure why Megaman 10 wasn’t included on disc, especially for the PS3 version which can take advantage of absurd amount of storage space used by BD discs. Anyways, here’s a breakdown of the bundle for the XBOX 360 version:

The Capcom Essentials 5-in-1 bundle may be a nice addition to your collection if you don't own any of these titles, although you probably can pick up most of these titles used for under 10-15 dollars. The MSRP is $59.99 for this new bundle, so it may be more of a matter of convenience to have all these games in one package.

The Capcom Essentials 5-in-1 bundle may be a nice addition to your collection if you don’t own any of these titles, although you probably can pick up most of these titles used for under 10-15 dollars. The MSRP is $59.99 for this new bundle, so it may be more of a matter of convenience to have all these games in one package.

For PS3 Exclusives, there are a couple obvious choices.

We had Beyond: Two Souls, which was Sony’s big exclusive for October. For September, we had the whimsical platformer Puppeteer which was released for a reasonable $40 brand new. And on the digital front we had the PSN exclusive puzzle-platformer RAIN which came out mid-October. And for you rabid Last of Us fans, we have the first of the DLC multiplayer content being released October 16th. It’s a map pack that contains around 4-5 new maps.

Released September 10th to mostly positive reviews, Puppeteer is the latest retail release from Studio Japan. You take control of a puppet (duuh) missing his head and throughout the game you obtain different heads that each give you a unique power . You also obtain a pair of shears that you wield as a sword and also as a means to "cut: through certain parts of a level to access new areas or navigate through specific areas. You will also face some pretty intense boss battles, which many reviews highlighted as the games strongest moments.

Released September 10th to mostly positive reviews, Puppeteer is the latest retail release from Studio Japan. You take control of a puppet (duuh) missing his head and throughout the game you obtain different heads that each give you a unique power . You also obtain a pair of shears that you wield as a sword and also as a means to “cut: through certain parts of a level to access new areas or navigate through specific areas. You will also face some pretty intense boss battles, which many reviews highlighted as the games strongest moments.

PlayStation 4 won’t support Bluetooth headsets for chat, Sony confirmed to Game Informer

With the PS4 and XBox One on the near horizon, new details are emerging about both consoles as launch day nears. One little nugget of info is that existing PlayStation 3 Bluetooth Headsets will not be compatible with the PS4’s chat features. This is definitely a bummer, since I own a Sony licensed and manufactured Bluetooth set that works beautifully with my PlayStation 3’s online gaming. Fortunately, I didn’t pay much for it so if need be I can replace it if Sony hasn’t fixed this glitch with a firmware or software update to the PS4 OS. I won’t be purchasing a PS4 probably until a year or two into it’s life cycle, so PS3 headsets will eventually be made compatible by a firmware update. If you own a Sony Pulse Bluetooth headset (which costs around $100).

The PlayStation 4 will include a simple headset/mic combination, but these typically are not as clear sounding as Bluetooth sets. As previously mentioned, an update will provide compatibility for Sony’s branded PULSE headsets and Sony will issue a system update to provide this compatibility in the coming months, but would not specify an exact date. The included USB headsets will be mono, so you essentially get what you pay for (the bundled PS4 headsets are free, btw).

Exclusive PS3 digital title RAIN released for PSN, Added new Sci-Fi “Must See” Movies for 2013, Beyond: Two Souls “Special Edition” available as a pre order via GameStop AND “The Last of Us” Multiplayer DLC revealed- sort of

Let it RAIN, oh let it RAIN on PSN

RAIN has officially been released to above average reviews, and although it’s not the auteur masterpiece we were all expecting from Studio Japan, it’s a decent enough melancholy platformer that gives off no pretentious ideas about more than the sum of it’s parts. I have yet to play it, but for a downloadable title from PSN striking around $14.99, I will probably be purchasing it in the future. In case you forgot about this intriguing title, it features a boy and girl in an alternate world where it almost always rains and you must collaborate with the girl to survive the dog-like beasts. The game only lets you see the silhouettes of the characters as the rain pours on them or you walk through the puddles in the cobblestone streets. Here’s a video clip to refresh your memory (btw, I love the haunting soundtrack that gives each instrument an almost human like emotion):

New movie “HER” added to my must-see Sci-Fi Films of 2013

I have come across a sci-fi love story that only Spike Jonze could craft. The movie, titled “HER” casts Joaquin Phoenix as recluse, anti-social middle-aged man that adapts to a new Operating System on his computer, which surprise: Features human like qualities through it’s projected voice (played by Scarlett Johansson). Suri for the next generation, I suppose? The trailer eludes the character becoming conflicted from separating his feelings from the OS to the real world. I’m already interested….. ARE YOOOOU?

Here’s the trailer in all it’s 2 and half minute glory:

Beyond: Two Souls Special Collectors Edition with 30 minutes of additional gameplay and “making-of” videos plus the soundtrack

I am very much looking forward to this game, although many are dubbing it an “interactive movie” but it looks to be the last truly great (here’s hoping) PS3 exclusive we shall receive this year. With the PS4 on the horizon (IT’S LITERALLY LIKE ONE MONTH AWAY FROM LAUNCH) I doubt will see much more really triple A exclusive’s for my beloved PS3. Beyond has also caused somewhat of a stir in the European market, as the PEGI (think ESRB but for the UK) has censored 10-15 seconds of gameplay from the EU release so it could achieve a 16+ rating, while the game in the states maintains an MA 18+ rating. Sony has been mum on what exactly was censored, but it seems ridiculous to try and achieve a larger audience by cutting out what I can only assume are a 10-15 second scene of nudity or extreme, brutal violence. At least the PS3 is region free so you guys can import the NA version. If you pre-ordered the game via GameStop, you’ll receive a special “Collectors Edition” with tin case, soundtrack and some gameplay extras, amongst other things. Here’s a look at the special edition for Beyond, which hits NA markets Oct 8th:

Naughty Dog devs dish out details for the forthcoming multiplayer DLC, to be released on Oct. 16th via PSN and the single-player DLC coming December/January

“The Last of Us” creators have divulged some very interesting information regarding their latest upper echelon of a videogame. The first DLC pack will be the  Abandoned Territories map pack for multiplayer which includes the following new maps:

  1. Suburbs map
  2. Bus Depot map
  3. Hometown map
  4. Bookstore map

Unfortunately their are no new screens to associate with what the maps may appear as, however one of the map includes random dust storms making the multiplayer gameplay more dynamic for this particular map. Also, Naughty Dog has stated they are creating new concept art and the single-player DLC will be “ambitious” but will not apparently intersect with Joel and Ellie’s timeline. This single-player DLC will feature a completely new character, so it should be very interesting. Either way, I’m totally all over it when it releases this winter.

AND FINALLY……

Sony has quietly released a new firmware update for the PS3. Version 4.50 features a huge radical change, renaming the PlayStation Network on the XMB to “PSN”, plus some mumbo-jumbo about switching off trophy displays for your friend list. Thanks Sony, that was really worth 15 minutes of my life last night.

PS4 Coming to Japan in February, PS VitaTV announced and new releases for August – September

Sony not releasing Playstation 4 in it’s native homeland until February

In a move that has Japanese gamers SHOCKED, dropped and rolling around more than Pikachu Sony has fessed up that their latest console won’t launch in it’s home territory until February, three months after the North American and European launch. Why? Simple really, NA and EU have proven themselves to have a bigger core market of early adopters and since the console is being released around the holidays it’s a given that many boys and girls will want one come Xmas. Christmas is nowhere near as big a deal in Japan as it is in NA and EU so Sony is targeting the markets where the console will sell fast and pick up the most steam quickly. Japanese gamers are furious with the console giant, crying fowl that waiting for a product created in their homeland which won’t be available until months after launch is unfair. All I can say to them is, HOW DOES IT FEEL? Seriously, American gamers waited close or over a year for the original PlayStation to launch in the states, months for the follow-up PS2 and the same for the PS3. Japanese gamers always get everything first, so the fact that you guys only have to wait 3 months instead of A YEAR or something incredulous is nothing compared to what American gamers typically wait for the latest and greatest from the Japanese-owned Gaming Giant. So sit back my fellow Japanese gamers and pop a xanax or k-pin, I think you guys can wait it out for 3 months.

Sony is launching their new microconsole and expansion to the Vita, the “Vita TV” in Japan this Fall and the hype building behind it is making a good case that Sony should consider a NA and EU launch in the near future as well 

If you haven’t yet heard the word, word WORD WORD BIRD IS THE FUCKING WORD then let me break it down for you: Sony is releasing a new add-on/expansion/console to the public in the form of their Vita technology, only slimmed and trimmed down into a small, tiny white box that connects to your TV and will use a Dual Shock 3 or possibly DS4 contoller. Out of the box, the Vita TV should native play proprietary Vita-based flash card games on your HD TV’s. This is big news, because now not only can you enjoy all the Vita has to offer in exclusive games (Persona 4 Golden, Soul Sacrifice, Gravity Rush, Tearaway, Killzone: Mercenary, to name a few) as a stand-alone console BUT it will also play PS One classics via the PlayStation Network and even better yet, eventually stream PS3 and PS4 games via remote play. This could be huge for those who have multiple TV Sets and don’t want to buy multiple PS4/PS3 consoles to associate with each TV set, so the Vita TV acts as an extender and allows for remote play from both systems using your router or local LAN connection. While not all this functionality has been confirmed, it will most likely be incorporated in the final release of the product. Let’s also hope Sony does away with the god-awful proprietary Memory Cards that the handheld Vita uses for storage for the Vita TV (the prices for Vita Memory Cards, much like it’s predecessor the PSP which used the Memory Stick Duo are both outrageous). Here’s hoping they go with something more mainstream like SD/HC cards or USB Flash drives. For the complete skinny check out this promotional video from Sony and this image courtesy of CNET from the Toyko Game Show which shows off the unit in detail and all it’s H/W ports:

The recently unveiled Vita TV which shrinks all the power of the Vita into an affordable, tiny box. Picture above: I'm only assuming here, but it appears to be the flash-card slot were you insert Vita-native games meaning it will play the entire catalog of Vita exclusive games, and oh yeah.... also includes remote play capabilities with the PS3 and upcoming PS4. Not bad for $100. Let's hope it makes it's way to American and European shores.

The recently unveiled Vita TV which shrinks all the power of the Vita into an affordable, tiny box. Pictured above: The front of the unit, which I’m only assuming here, but it appears to be the flash-card slot were you insert Vita-native games meaning it will play the entire catalog of Vita exclusive games, And oh yeah…. also includes remote play capabilities with the PS3 and upcoming PS4. Not bad for $100. The rear of the unit includes an HDMI port, Ethernet/LAN port, Memory Card Slot and AC Adapter port. The device also includes an internal 1 GB of internal Flash storage and wi-fi capabilities. Let’s hope Vita TV makes it’s way to American and European shores.

Latest PS3 Retail, Downloadable and DLC Releases as well as a new awesome console bundle for PlayStation 3

The last 30 days or so have been busy for out PlayStation 3. While the console may be nearing it’s next iteration, Sony vows to provide full support for the PS3 simultaneously while the PlayStation 4 is available. Sony achieved the same level of success with the PS2 during it’s end-of-days scenario while the PS3 was still in is it’s infancy and didn’t really have any killer apps. Sony has consistently reaffirmed their support for their previous-gen console with exclusive and multi-plat releases while supporting their newest offering, the PS4. Below is a list of notable new PlayStation 3 exclusive and multi-platform releases from mid-August to the end of September (all release dates are for North American territories):

AUGUST 13th: PAYDAY 2

The Heist continues with Payday 2. Plan out a strategy with your AI or Co-Op buddies to maximize your capitol or go in the old fashioned way- guns blazing. Whatever ideology you prefer, it sounds like one hell of a coop romp.

The Heist continues with Payday 2. Plan out a strategy with your AI or Co-Op buddies to maximize your capitol or go in the old fashioned way- guns blazing. Whatever ideology you prefer, it sounds like one hell of a coop romp.

August 20th: DUCKTALES REMASTERED

Although technically a retail release, this PS3 version contains a code to download the digital version and a collectors pin. The game has garnered critical acclaim as a faithful translation that pays homage to the Capcom NES classic. If you're like me and HD space is at a premium and you just like your games on disc, not to fret, Capcom will also release a PHYSICAL disc copy of the game at retail on November 12th, 2013.

Although technically a retail release, this PS3 version contains a code to download the digital version and a collectors pin. The game has garnered critical acclaim as a faithful translation that pays homage to the Capcom NES classic. If you’re like me and HD space is at a premium and you just like your games on disc, not to fret, Capcom will also release a PHYSICAL disc copy of the game at retail on November 12th, 2013.

August 20th: SAINTS ROW IV

THE SAINTS ARE BAAAACK BITCHES! Take on an Alien horde and protect your nation (literally) as you play as a pissed off President of the USA. What's not to love? Thank god their are still some games out there that are just great, kick-ass, silly fun  akin to Duke Nukem.

THE SAINTS ARE BAAAACK BITCHES! Take on an Alien horde and protect your nation (literally) as you play as a pissed off President of the USA. What’s not to love? Thank god their are still some games out there that are just great, kick-ass, silly fun akin to Duke Nukem.

August 20th: SPLINTER CELL BLACKLIST

Another critically acclaimed entry in Tom Clancy's tactical 3rd person action/espionage thriller Splinter Cell comes to every conceivable console on August 20th, 2013.

Another critically acclaimed entry in Tom Clancy’s tactical 3rd person action/espionage thriller Splinter Cell comes to every conceivable console on August 20th, 2013.

August 20th: THE BUREAU XCOM DECLASSIFIED

Another follow-up to the classic X-COM franchise, this iteration doesn't quite measure up to the "Enemy Unknown" reboot released by Firaxis quite some time a go. Receiving mostly average to mediocre reviews, only the most ardent fan need apply

Another follow-up to the classic X-COM franchise, this iteration doesn’t quite measure up to the “Enemy Unknown” reboot released by Firaxis quite some time a go. Receiving mostly average to mediocre reviews, only the most ardent fan need apply

August 27th: FINAL FANTASY XIV A REALM REBORN

Square Enix tries to revitalize it's FF franchise by re-releasing FF XIV as "A Realm Reborn". Sporting loads of new features and improved graphics, this MMORPG remains PS3 exclusive    for consoles. You can also pick it up for the PC.

Square Enix tries to revitalize it’s FF franchise by re-releasing FF XIV as “A Realm Reborn”. Sporting loads of new features and improved graphics, this MMORPG remains PS3 exclusive for consoles. You can also pick it up for the PC.

August 27th: HATSUNE MIKU PROJECT DIVA F

This continuation of the popular Hatsune Miku rhythm dance and music game has been a popular franchise in Japan for awhile and is quickly spreading it's J-POP love across the states.  A PS3 and PS Vita exclusive, any fan of the series should purchase this.

This continuation of the popular Hatsune Miku rhythm dance and music game has been a popular franchise in Japan for awhile and is quickly spreading it’s J-POP love across the states. A PS3 and PS Vita exclusive, any fan of the series should purchase this.

August 27th: KILLER IS DEAD

The North American Box Art for Killer is Dead, published by XSEED Games. Definitely retains the style that game creator/writer "Suda 51" compliments all his games with (ie: Lollipop Chainsaw)

The North American Box Art for Killer is Dead, published by XSEED Games. Definitely retains the style that game creator/writer “Suda 51” compliments all his games with (ie: Lollipop Chainsaw)

Written and Directed by famed Japanese game creator "Suda 51", Killer is Dead puts the player in command of an assassin with a cybernetic arm. Using a 3rd person perspective and unique cel-shaded anime-style art, Killer is Dead aesthetics are uniquely Suda, but the games confusing story and sloppy combat mechanics make this one of Suda's less favorable games. A rental definitely, try before you buy. Oh yeah, and lots of barely clothed chicks are peppered throughout the game. It wouldn't be a Suda 51 game if there weren't some naked chicks meandering about in-game though!

Written and Directed by famed Japanese game creator “Suda 51”, Killer is Dead puts the player in command of an assassin with a cybernetic arm. Using a 3rd person perspective and unique cel-shaded anime-style art, Killer is Dead aesthetics are uniquely Suda, but the games confusing story and sloppy combat mechanics make this one of Suda’s less favorable games. A rental definitely, try before you buy. Oh yeah, and lots of barely clothed chicks are peppered throughout the game. It wouldn’t be a Suda 51 game if there weren’t some naked chicks meandering about in-game though!

August 27th: MADDEN NFL 25

Instead of the annual numeration of Madden 14, EA decided to capitalize on the games 25th Anniversary of existence. The Madden franchise has become a stalwart sport series for every console and although this particular version doesn't differ all that much from the previous incarnation it will be interesting to see how the PS4 and XBOX One versions perform against their 7th gen counterparts.

Instead of the annual numeration of Madden 14, EA decided to capitalize on the games 25th Anniversary of existence. The Madden franchise has become a stalwart sport series for every console and although this particular version doesn’t differ all that much from the previous incarnation it will be interesting to see how the PS4 and XBOX One versions perform against their 7th gen counterparts.

August 27th: LOST PLANET 3

Capcom releases their final installment of the Co-Op sci-fi thriller Lost Planet 3 on August 27th. The game features plenty of action and mech-driven combat but reviews have been mixed with most critics praising the kick-ass visuals. Hardcore fans of the series should enjoy it however.

Capcom releases their final installment of the Co-Op sci-fi thriller Lost Planet 3 on August 27th. The game features plenty of action and mech-driven combat but reviews have been mixed with most critics praising the kick-ass visuals. Hardcore fans of the series should enjoy it however.

August 31st: PAINKILLER HELL & DAMNATION

This classic PC FPS finally hits home to consoles. Developed by "People Can Fly" who released the cult classic Bulletstorm, this title has experienced multiple delays since April of this year and finally saw retail release August 31st. Containing the Hell and Damnation expansion pack and the original Painkiller campaign, the game has been optimized for consoles but unfortunately not in the best ways. The game has received mixed to negative reviews and compared to Painkiller: Black Edition available on Steam for less than $15, which is considerably much better than the console variant in terms of graphics, play mechanics and sound/music, if you have a decent PC with an older GFX card then running Painkiller should be no issue. The console port retails for $29.99 brand new.

This classic PC FPS finally hits home to consoles, ported by Nordic Games and The Farm 51. Developed originally by “People Can Fly” for the PC who  went on to develop and release the cult classic Bulletstorm, this title has experienced multiple delays since April of this year and finally saw retail release August 31st. Containing the Hell and Damnation expansion pack and the original Painkiller campaign, the game has been optimized for consoles but unfortunately not in the best ways. The game has received mixed to negative reviews and compared to Painkiller: Black Edition available on Steam for less than $15, which is considerably much better than the console variant in terms of graphics, play mechanics and sound/music, if you have a decent PC with an older GFX card then running Painkiller should be no issue. The console port retails for $29.99 brand new.

A screenshot from Painkiller: Hell & Damnation ported to PS3/360. The game is your traditional anti-hero sent to hell to kill off hordes of demons in bloody, gory and bad-ass weapon fashion, as pictured above.

A screenshot from Painkiller: Hell & Damnation ported to PS3/360. The game is your traditional anti-hero sent to hell to kill off hordes of demons in bloody, gory fashion with bad-ass weapon weaponry at your disposal, as pictured above.

September 3rd: DEAD OR ALIVE 5 ULTIMATE

The franchise that started it all with bouncing babes in the sun with breasts disproportionate to their actual body size. The game has received mixed to positive reviews and was recommended for new players to the series, but also having a lot to attract to longtime diehard fans.

The franchise that started it all with bouncing babes in the sun with breasts disproportionate to their actual body size. The game has received mixed to positive reviews and was recommended for new players to the series, but also having a lot to attract to longtime diehard fans.

September 3rd: DIABLO III

The classic PC isometric hack-n-monster-slasher and dungeon crawler includes 4 player couch Co-Op. The game has garnered critical acclaim amongst most news oulets.

The classic PC isometric hack-n-monster-slasher and dungeon crawler includes 4 player couch Co-Op. The game has garnered critical acclaim amongst most news oulets.

 

September 3rd: FARMING SIMULATOR

Finally, a game that simulates what life would be like living on a farm!  JUST WHAT WE ALWAYS WANTED /sarcasm. Seriously though? When they though about developing and publishing this title, did anyone stop to think "is this really a good idea?" I'm sure there will be some folks interested in this title, but it will be a small, niche audience at most.

Finally, a game that simulates what life would be like living on a farm! JUST WHAT WE ALWAYS WANTED /sarcasm. Seriously though? When they though about developing and publishing this title, did anyone stop to think “is this really a good idea?” I’m sure there will be some folks interested in this title, but it will be a small, niche audience at most.

 

September 3rd: RAYMAN LEGENDS

Originally scheduled as a Wii U exclusive launch title, Legends has been delayed nearly a year to make it a multi-plat release and add more baddies, more levels and some additional polish. The wait has been well worth it, as the game has been critically acclaimed across all platforms, with the Wii U and PS3 versions coming out on top. The game also supports local couch co-op. Can't wait to get my grubby hands on this one!

Originally scheduled as a Wii U exclusive launch title, Legends has been delayed nearly a year to make it a multi-plat release and add more baddies, more levels and some additional polish. The wait has been well worth it, as the game has been critically acclaimed across all platforms, with the Wii U and PS3 versions coming out on top. The game also supports local couch co-op. Can’t wait to get my grubby hands on this one!

 

This co-op crazy platformer has huge crazy bosses, variety upon varieties of locales and vivid, colorful 2D graphics. Screenshot courtesy of Videogamer.com

This co-op crazy platformer has huge crazy bosses, variety upon varieties of locales and vivid, colorful 2D graphics. Screenshot courtesy of Videogamer.com

 

 

 

More new PlayStation 4 bundle rumors that supposedly includes a whole lot more for very little more money and Naughty Dog releases new update for “The Last of Us” that includes new multiplayer mode…. FOR FREE! WEEEE!

For a scantily clad, mere 100 dollar more investment you can purchase an awesome new PS4 Bundle that includes a game, extra DUALSHOCK 4 controller AND the new PS4 Eye camera

New PS4 bundles have been spotted online for sale in Europe that include a whole lot more extras for a very reasonable extra $100 sheckles.

New PS4 bundles have been spotted online for sale in Europe that include a whole lot more extras for a very reasonable extra $100 sheckles.

The inevitability of the new console launches from Sony and Microsoft are becoming more and more of a reality every new day that rises upon us. Next-Gen is almost here, and Sony has been rumored to soon announce a killer new bundle that includes (GET THIS:)

  • The PlayStation 4 Console + all standard A/V or HDMI cables plus AC Power Adapter
  • PS4 Launch Title KILLZONE: Shadow Fall
  • TWO Dual Shock 4 Controllers
  • PlayStation 4 Eye Camera
  • Plus all PlayStation 4 Bundles, whichever you purchase contain a Headset for communication via multiplayer or Live Chat services

So let’s break this down shall we? The standard PS4 bundle which includes the console, controller and headset costs $399. The aforementioned recently announced bundle contains all the extras for a total price of $499, the full price of rival Microsoft’s Xbox One console. Considering the fact that the MSRP on the PS4 Eye Camera is rumored to be around $100, the launch title Killzone: Shadow Fall will probably retail for around $59.99 and a new Dual Shock 4 Controller will most likely set you back another 50-60 dollars, your savings will be in the approximate range of 120 dollars. This estimate is hypothetical of course, since we truly won’t know the price of a Dual Shock 4 Controller, PS4 Eye Camera and Killzone launch title until they actually hit retail shelves. The prices offered via numerous online retailers such as Amazon maybe special prices for those who laid down the $100-200 in advance for preorders of the unit. If you have evidence to back up or refute my calculations, please don’t hesitate to comment and let me know. It should be noted that so far, this rumored bundle is only be spotted for sale in Europe so let’s hope Sony does the right thing here and makes it available to the states, yes?

Naughty Dog releases free v1.03 update for “The Last of Us” that includes new multiplayer mode called “Interrogation”

I have probably given up more hours of my life to TLOU’s surprisingly robust and addictive multiplayer portion then one would like to admit, but that is just a testament to Naughty Dog’s brilliant game design for their critically acclaimed summer PS3 blockbuster. In a recently new patch available for download via the PlayStation Network (version 1.03 to be exact) players will be greeted to a new multiplayer mode entitled “Interrogation“. While I haven’t played the new game mode for myself, I have heard mixed things about it. However, I won’t complain since it’s a free addition and not some hacked off bit to be locked away later as a DLC pack. I commend Naughty Dog on their commitment to keep “The Last of Us” fans constantly engaged via free updates and upcoming DLC packs. In the new Interrogation mode, you must literally torture your human opponents via shiv kills and other nasty executions to discover the whereabouts of their teams lockboxes. Once your team homes in and finds the precious booty,  your team must continue interrogating other opponents to ward off oncoming attackers and find the remaining additional lockboxes. If you’ve played this mode and loved it or hated it, comment and let me know, YES YES?

The Last of US DLC to be announced sometime in August, more new game purchases and pre-orders

Naughty Dog won’t rule out Joel and OR Ellie in a single-player story-based campaign DLC and also says that Multiplayer DLC will be announced in the near future as well

Joel and Ellie’s tumultuous journey across post-pandemic North America may be over, but developer Naughty Dog won’t rule out any future DLC packs that could include the characters in a side-story apart from the main single-player campaign. There are dozens of opportunities for interesting stories to be told here about the games many supporting characters such as:

  1. How did Joel and his brother Tommy survive those first several years during the outbreak that repulsed Tommy so much he needed to find refuge away from his brother and join the FireFly militia?
  2. The story of Ellie and her friend Riley becoming infected, only to have Ellie discover her immunity?
  3. What happened to Marlene after she parted ways with Joel, Tess and Ellie to the University and how she and the rest of the militia sacrificed so much to move to a new, safer Hospital location?
  4. How the hell did that weird, pedophilia cannibal David rise to power within the group of Hunters?
  5. The story regarding Ish and his return to the mainland after being at sea for so long, only to find civilization had completely collapsed. He used his own unique survivalist skills to build a new “family” like society in the tunnels by the sewer…. what happened during the final days when their safety was compromised so that Ish and several others had to abandon the only safe haven they had?
  6. The remnants of one of the fallen Quarantine Zones banding together to fight back at the Military to gain control because of the food shortages etc… Then there’s the other side of the story…..
  7. The few soldiers that survived the uprising against the Hunters/Bandits in one of the Quarantine Zones and the female soldier that vowed revenge against her fallen comrades. This idea would certainly make use of A LOT of stealth and perhaps you would even have some advanced weaponry at your disposal because this character was military.
  8. Henry and Sam, how they managed to get stuck in the city crawling with Hunters and what tactics they used to survive without being caught.

These are just some of the ideas that have been rattling around across internet forums and some of my own personal ideas. Of course, with what I’ve come to understand so far there will be only ONE single-player DLC addition, the rest will be multiplayer. I have no objection to this as I love the multiplayer component to “The Last of Us” and some new maps, new game modes etc. would be a welcome addition! Also, as for the multiplayer DLC how about giving players new maps that cater to you fighting another squad smack dab in the middle of an area with infected? Having not only to worry about human opponents but a clicker or bloater bursting through the doors would make for some tense moments, yes? Or a new mode where  your team must survive against the infected while scavenging for parts for you clan (kind of like a horde mode, but with less emphasis on the horde and more emphasis on obtaining food and parts for your clan to thrive and survive). Anyways, are you listening Naughty Dog? I hope you’re taking notes!

It’s my Birthday and I’ll cry if I want to, CRY IF I WANT TO…. but instead I purchased Tales of Graces F and finalized my preorders for Tales of Xillia Limited Edition and Dragon’s Crown

So anyways, my Birfday is tomorrow and my dad took me out on a $100 game shopping spree. HOORAH FOR SHOPPING SPREES! Seeing how I had already put my preorders in for “Dragon’s Crown” and “Tales of Xillia Limited Edition“, I decided to pay for the rest of both games and pick up Tales of Graces F to familiarize myself with the series mechanics and gameplay style (because not EVERY JRPG is exactly the same). I was able to purchase “Tales of Graces F” for approximately $27 used with a “20 Percent Off Any Pre-Owned Game” coupon that GameStop sent out to me via an automated Happy Birthday email. Who says being a used game and physical disc whore doesn’t come with fringe benefits?

Purchased this weekend for my Birthday: "Tales of Graces F" is part of the "Tales..." series going all the way back to the PlayStation One era of RPGS. These games have become somewhat of an institution for modern-day RPGS because the "Tales" series has had so many console iterations. One of the few RPGS that can compare to the longevity of the Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest and Breath of Fire RPG's (although I'm still waiting for a PS3 version of a new Breath of Fire).

Purchased this weekend for my Birthday: “Tales of Graces F” is part of the “Tales…” series going all the way back to the PlayStation One era of RPGS. These games have become somewhat of an institution for modern-day RPGS because the “Tales” series has had so many console iterations. One of the few RPGS that can compare to the longevity of the Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest and Breath of Fire RPG’s (although I’m still waiting for a PS3 version of a new Breath of Fire).

Coming August 6th to both the PS3 and PS Vita exclusively, Dragon's Crown has already garnered critical acclaim to it's throwback style of 2D fantasy brawlers from the 16-bit and arcade era. Similar to Golden Axe in it's gameplay mechanics but with much more depth due to it's deep leveling system and stat management, Dragon's Crown is a rare gem developed by Vanillaware as a love letter to button-mashing, beat-em-ups from the 90's. With local 4-player and Network multiplay, this game will be a blast to brawl through. And the gorgeous 2D hand-drawn characters make this a must-buy for any retro gaming fan.

Coming August 6th to both the PS3 and PS Vita exclusively, Dragon’s Crown has already garnered critical acclaim thanks to it’s throwback style of 2D fantasy brawlers from the 16-bit console and arcade era. Similar to Golden Axe in it’s gameplay mechanics but with much more depth due to it’s deep leveling system and stat management, Dragon’s Crown is a rare gem developed by Vanillaware as a love letter to button-mashing, beat-em-ups from the 90’s. With local 4-player and Network multiplay, this game will be a blast to brawl through. And the gorgeous 2D hand-drawn characters make this a must-buy for any retro gaming fan.

Pictured Above: The voluptuous and ridiculously proportioned "Sorceress" character class. The beautiful hand-drawn visuals make this game a rarity amongst today's AAA blockbusters that focus on pushing polygon counts, facial realism and bigger explosions with better particle effects.

Pictured Above: The voluptuous and ridiculously proportioned “Sorceress” character class. The beautiful hand-drawn visuals make this game a rare stand-out title amongst today’s AAA blockbusters that focus on pushing polygon counts for realistic facial expressions, bigger explosions and better particle effects.