'Destiny 2’: A more open and impactful shared-world experience

about X hours ago from
'Destiny 2’: A more open and impactful shared-world experience

My friends had primed me for an epic space opera with tight gunplay and exciting challenges -- but to me, the game felt like an intentionally tedious shooting gallery filled with generic enemies that soaked up bullets like a dry sponge. I found Destiny and its expansions so boring that I was hesitant when Bungie invited me to try the game's sequel ahead of launch. Today, I'm eating my words. Destiny 2 is shaping up to be everything its predecessor wasn't.

Wait, 'Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition' is actually fun?

about X hours ago from
Wait, 'Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition' is actually fun?

A part of the Final Fantasy XV universe (it's a thing), I wrinkled my nose at the news of Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition for smartphones. I've completed the game on PS4, have played through the episode content and will be playing the multiplayer add-on once I'm back from Gamescom, but this left me cold. This was a corporate mobile cash-in that vaguely tied into the original game, one that would relentlessly nudge players to either buy in-app items or the full console version. Nothing was appealing about this, whatsoever. That was, until I played an early beta on FFXV Director Hajime Tabata's phone. I was rude, it was in the middle of an interview but, hey, it was actually a lot of fun. Wait, what just happened?

'Dissidia NT' tries to add MMORPG dynamics to a fighting game

about X hours ago from
'Dissidia NT' tries to add MMORPG dynamics to a fighting game

Fighting in Dissidia NT, coming to the PlayStation 4, is mayhem. Six characters from the Final Fantasy universe, of varying levels of popularity, are rushing each other, launching giant magical projectiles, charging up summon attacks, and watching their backs as they do it. While the first two Dissidia games on PSP were one-on-one affairs, this time you're part of a trio. And similar to Overwatch and other competitive team games, characters are meant to work together in unison. Each is assigned to one of four classes, and that decides their play-style, weaknesses and strengths. You can also choose your attacks, buff skills and summons on top of that. In short, the demo I played was a complicated introduction -- even for someone that played the last two Dissidia games to death.

'Fe' is a stunning adventure about connecting with nature

about X hours ago from
'Fe' is a stunning adventure about connecting with nature

Once, Andreas Beijer snuck up on a deer. He remembers tip-toeing through the forest, always downwind to ensure it wouldn't pick up his scent. "I managed to come really close," he says. "I could almost touch it, before it noticed me and ran away into the forest." Beijer is a creative director at Zoink Games, an independent studio in Sweden. His team grew up playing in the woods and wanted those experiences to shape their next game. "We were free," Klaus Lyngeled, the company's CEO and Creative Director said. "We could just run out in an area, play around and not have our parents look at what we were doing."

Turtle Beach starts selling its wireless Xbox headset

about X hours ago from
Turtle Beach starts selling its wireless Xbox headset

The biggest pain when it comes to wireless Xbox One headsets is that they all require some sort of adapter or base station to connect to your console. Add to that the hefty price tag (most models can cost upwards of $150) and the appeal wears thin. That's why the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 caught our eye earlier this year. The headset is the first to utilize Microsoft's wireless tech to connect directly to its console (dongles and wires begone). What's more, you can also hook it up to the upcoming Xbox One X. And, all for just $99.95. The headset drops today, in limited quantities, in the US via the Turtle Beach website. Retailers will get the model on September 4.

'Life is Strange: Before the Storm' is all about being a wiseass teen

about X hours ago from
'Life is Strange: Before the Storm' is all about being a wiseass teen

Before she was the absurdly cool burnout who stole our hearts in Life is Strange, Chloe Price was just a normal, melodramatic teenage loner trying to cope without her best friend. Chloe doesn't have the ability to rewind time, like the original game's lead Max Caulfield. But, in the prequel Life is Strange: Before the Storm, she does have an impeccable wit and the courage to tell anyone off. As you'd expect, those are traits that can both help her or get her into more trouble.

'The Evil Within 2' is better because it spaces out the scares

about X hours ago from
'The Evil Within 2' is better because it spaces out the scares

The Evil Within 2 is weird, gross and scary. But that's okay because it balances all that with exploration and figuring out what the hell is going on. I can then get back to fleeing disgusting buzzsaw creatures -- or occasionally stabbing them in the chest -- at my leisure. The Evil Within was never about cheap jump scares, but the game was so consistently tense and bleak that many found it pretty hard to play through. The sequel, playable at Gamescom this year, looks to be a refinement of the original, making it altogether more playable, even if there's still usually something trying to kill you at every turn.

'Ruiner' is not just a cyberpunk 'Hotline Miami'

about X hours ago from
'Ruiner' is not just a cyberpunk 'Hotline Miami'

Ruiner might be one of the most eye-catching titles showcased at Gamescom -- something that's hard to achieve when every company is bombarding you with posters, flags and bags at every turn. The aggressive, manga-styled protagonist and angry catch copy are difficult to ignore. It's also the first title to come out of Reikon studio, an indie Polish team founded by veteran gamesmakers that had previously worked on The Witcher, Shadow Warrior and many more. (I really liked Shadow Warrior, okay?)

'Shinobi Striker' makes 'Naruto' a serious online fighter

about X hours ago from
'Shinobi Striker' makes 'Naruto' a serious online fighter

Naruto is in a strange place right now. The long-running manga series ended in early 2015, before its anime adaptation wrapped up in March this year. The spiky-haired ninja saved the world and achieved his dream of becoming the Hokage, or rather the leader, of the Hidden Leaf village. But now there's Boruto, a new series about his boisterous son. Both the manga and anime are relatively new and it's not clear just yet if either will replicate the success of the original series.