Studio Dontnod came back from its embattled game Remember Me with 2015's Life Is Strange, a critical darling lauded for its rich characters and themes. Last week, the developer released the very different Vampyr, a WWI-era science-meets-supernatural game. Dontnod's next project is a step back to our world (or so we assume) with Twin Mirror, a psychological thriller published by Bandai Namco that's headed to modern platforms next year.
Sometimes I need a video game that doesn't involve shooting people or decapitating monsters. (Sorry, Bloodborne and Wolfeinstein II: The new Colossus.) My brain cells crave something quieter, like a meandering dive through Abzu or a free-roaming session in Skate 3. If you fall into the same camp, I highly recommend Shape of the World, a serene walking simulator set in a colorful and constantly evolving wilderness.
It's just another Wednesday night at Code & Theory, a digital creative agency in New York City's tallest skyscraper. Every other week, a team of developers and designers hops into a conference room (with a stunning view of Manhattan) to participate in a unique, after-hours exercise: a Dungeons and Dragons game night. Timm Woods, a professional dungeon master, leads each session, guiding the colleagues through intricate adventures filled with gypsy-camp raids, vindictive scarecrows and the cruel mists of Ravenloft.
Game developer Hi-Rez Studios announced that its hero shooter Paladins will arrive on the Nintendo Switch on June 12th. It will launch next week as a $30 Founders Pack that includes all current and future champions, with a free-to-play version coming later in the summer. But the studio claims the Switch version will run at 60 frames per second and support cross-play with the Xbox One edition.
Playing the Nintendo Switch in portable mode is incredibly convenient, but the short battery life can leave users wanting. Today, Anker announced two new battery packs that are optimized for fast charging the Nintendo Switch. One is a $70, 13400mAh pack that provides up to 10 hours of additional play time. The other allows for 15 additional hours of play time with a 20100mAh battery, retailing for $90. Both devices look quite sleek, like all of Anker's products, and are branded with the Nintendo Switch logo.
An already thin library of Xbox One exclusives for 2018 just lost one more entry, as Microsoft confirmed that the Crackdown 3 release is scheduled for February 2019. Following a rumor from Kotaku yesterday, Microsoft said in a statement given to Windows Central that "To ensure we deliver the experience they deserve, Crackdown 3 will be launching in Feb 2019. We look forward to sharing more on Crackdown 3 this Sunday during the Xbox E3 2018 briefing."
Facebook hasn't been shy about its plans to challenge game streaming services like Twitch, Mixer and YouTube Gaming, and it's taking that effort to its next logical step. The social site recently started testing a dedicated gaming video portal (appropriately shortened to fb.gg) that highlights both live and pre-recorded footage based on the games, creators, pages and groups you follow. It'll also put the spotlight on eSports competitions and game-related events, and mobile gamers will see a section for Instant Games. The experience will no doubt seem familiar if you've used rival services, but it's hard to complain when you can find a Fortnite stream that much faster.
2016's Hitman refresh from IO Interactive was a watershed moment for the long-running assassination and stealth game series. Even as the developer was essentially cut loose from Square Enix, it retained ownership over the franchise, signing a new publishing deal with Warner Bros. Now the company is ready to launch the next iteration in the popular stealth series. Hitman 2 will be released for PlayStation, Xbox and PC on November 13, 2018.