The Most Exciting Part Of Next-Gen Is The Unknown

about X hours ago from
The Most Exciting Part Of Next-Gen Is The Unknown

The fog around next-gen hardware is lifting, and gamers are finally starting to get a clearer look at what to expect from Sony and Microsoft’s new consoles. Recent presentations for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X provided a sneak peek at the games that will shape the industry in the coming years, along with some of the technology that makes them possible. But even as more information is released, the answer to one key question remains vague: What defines a “next-gen” game?

This isn’t about the physical hardware you use to play them. People want to know about the new horizons being opened up; they want to know about the things that are not possible today, but will be possible soon. We’ve heard about ray tracing, solid-state drives, triangles, reduced load times, and more – but how do those translate to gameplay? How do they change how you interact with worlds and characters? How do they help create more than bigger, faster, prettier versions of familiar templates?

The Most Exciting Part Of Next-Gen Is The Unknown

about X hours ago from
The Most Exciting Part Of Next-Gen Is The Unknown

The fog around next-gen hardware is lifting, and gamers are finally starting to get a clearer look at what to expect from Sony and Microsoft’s new consoles. Recent presentations for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X provided a sneak peek at the games that will shape the industry in the coming years, along with some of the technology that makes them possible. But even as more information is released, the answer to one key question remains vague: What defines a “next-gen” game?

This isn’t about the physical hardware you use to play them. People want to know about the new horizons being opened up; they want to know about the things that are not possible today, but will be possible soon. We’ve heard about ray tracing, solid-state drives, triangles, reduced load times, and more – but how do those translate to gameplay? How do they change how you interact with worlds and characters? How do they help create more than bigger, faster, prettier versions of familiar templates?

Everything You Need To Know About Wasteland 3’s Vehicular Combat

about X hours ago from
Everything You Need To Know About Wasteland 3’s Vehicular Combat

In Wasteland 3, you’ll manage a team of up to six Rangers as they battle for survival while exploring Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. However, the most valuable member of your team might be your car. To help you explore this winter wasteland, your team boards a tank-like truck – called the Kodiak – outfitted with a wild assortment of weapons. This machine is named after the bear, which is fitting because this car can take a lot of damage and is incredibly fearsome in combat. During random encounters, the Kodiak tears through large groups of enemies and is instrumental to your survival. We talked to game director Tim Campbell about what makes this monstrous motor so special.

“We experimented with a lot of different takes on how the vehicle drives, how it handles, how fast it should it go, and even how many vehicles there should be. There was a lot of sifting through ideas and taking this thread from this idea, and this thread from another idea, and consolidating them all together. One of the things that came out of the team's early prototypes that we built on was the idea of your vehicle coming into combat with you, and having that be a big addition to your Ranger squad.”

Everything You Need To Know About Wasteland 3’s Vehicular Combat

about X hours ago from
Everything You Need To Know About Wasteland 3’s Vehicular Combat

In Wasteland 3, you’ll manage a team of up to six Rangers as they battle for survival while exploring Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. However, the most valuable member of your team might be your car. To help you explore this winter wasteland, your team boards a tank-like truck – called the Kodiak – outfitted with a wild assortment of weapons. This machine is named after the bear, which is fitting because this car can take a lot of damage and is incredibly fearsome in combat. During random encounters, the Kodiak tears through large groups of enemies and is instrumental to your survival. We talked to game director Tim Campbell about what makes this monstrous motor so special.

“We experimented with a lot of different takes on how the vehicle drives, how it handles, how fast it should it go, and even how many vehicles there should be. There was a lot of sifting through ideas and taking this thread from this idea, and this thread from another idea, and consolidating them all together. One of the things that came out of the team's early prototypes that we built on was the idea of your vehicle coming into combat with you, and having that be a big addition to your Ranger squad.”

The Good And The Bad Of Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle Of Armor

about X hours ago from
The Good And The Bad Of Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle Of Armor

Following the success of Pokémon Sword & Shield, Game Freak and The Pokémon Company announced the first-ever downloadable expansions for the mainline Pokémon series. The Isle of Armor, the first part of the two-part Expansion Pass, launched last week, and now that I've played it all the way through, I feel secure in saying that while I overall enjoyed the new expansion, the experience stumbles in a few ways.

Check out my thoughts on what works and what doesn't in the new Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle of Armor expansion below.

The Good: An Entirely New Wild Area The highlight of The Isle of Armor isn't the story or the creatures that inhabit it, but rather the island itself. Allowing you to travel to a remote island northwest of the Galar region you explored in Sword & Shield, The Isle of Armor expansion drops you into what is essentially an all-new Wild Area. Much like the Wild Area from the original game, that means you not only have plenty of Pokémon to encounter, but also diverse biomes, Pokémon Dens for Max Raid Battles, and, yes, full control of the camera. The weather also changes depending on where you are on the island and when, giving you new Pokémon to encounter. When players first envisioned a console Pokémon game, the Wild Area was likely close to what they imagined, and it's great to have a new place like that to explore.

The Good And The Bad Of Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle Of Armor

about X hours ago from
The Good And The Bad Of Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle Of Armor

Following the success of Pokémon Sword & Shield, Game Freak and The Pokémon Company announced the first-ever downloadable expansions for the mainline Pokémon series. The Isle of Armor, the first part of the two-part Expansion Pass, launched last week, and now that I've played it all the way through, I feel secure in saying that while I overall enjoyed the new expansion, the experience stumbles in a few ways.

Check out my thoughts on what works and what doesn't in the new Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Isle of Armor expansion below.

The Good: An Entirely New Wild Area The highlight of The Isle of Armor isn't the story or the creatures that inhabit it, but rather the island itself. Allowing you to travel to a remote island northwest of the Galar region you explored in Sword & Shield, The Isle of Armor expansion drops you into what is essentially an all-new Wild Area. Much like the Wild Area from the original game, that means you not only have plenty of Pokémon to encounter, but also diverse biomes, Pokémon Dens for Max Raid Battles, and, yes, full control of the camera. The weather also changes depending on where you are on the island and when, giving you new Pokémon to encounter. When players first envisioned a console Pokémon game, the Wild Area was likely close to what they imagined, and it's great to have a new place like that to explore.

Pac-Man's Creator On The Legacy, Pizza, And The Future

about X hours ago from
Pac-Man's Creator On The Legacy, Pizza, And The Future

Forty years ago, Toru Iwatani took a look at a pizza then created one of the most iconic video game characters of all time. The release of Pac-Man created a frenzy that reportedly caused coin shortages and spawned a Top 40 single. According to the Guinness World Records, more than 293,000 Pac-Man machines were built throughout the ‘80s, making it the most successful coin-operated arcade machine ever produced. In honor of this anniversary, we spoke with Iwatani about the creation of Pac-Man and why he thinks the character has had such a lasting legacy.

Pac-Man is actually older than a lot of the people who play games today. Why do you think the character has had such an impressive legacy? Toru Iwatani: We targeted the game towards female audiences and dating couples, so I believe the cute design, the easy learning curve, and simple-yet-intuitive four-way controls resonated well with everyone. Having the Ghosts chase you then turning the tables and chasing the Ghosts and gobbling them up in succession is quite gratifying, which I think is another reason why the game is adored to this day.

Pac-Man's Creator On The Legacy, Pizza, And The Future

about X hours ago from
Pac-Man's Creator On The Legacy, Pizza, And The Future

Forty years ago, Toru Iwatani took a look at a pizza then created one of the most iconic video game characters of all time. The release of Pac-Man created a frenzy that reportedly caused coin shortages and spawned a Top 40 single. According to the Guinness World Records, more than 293,000 Pac-Man machines were built throughout the ‘80s, making it the most successful coin-operated arcade machine ever produced. In honor of this anniversary, we spoke with Iwatani about the creation of Pac-Man and why he thinks the character has had such a lasting legacy.

Pac-Man is actually older than a lot of the people who play games today. Why do you think the character has had such an impressive legacy? Toru Iwatani: We targeted the game towards female audiences and dating couples, so I believe the cute design, the easy learning curve, and simple-yet-intuitive four-way controls resonated well with everyone. Having the Ghosts chase you then turning the tables and chasing the Ghosts and gobbling them up in succession is quite gratifying, which I think is another reason why the game is adored to this day.

Spoiler-Free Tips For The Last Of Us Part II

about X hours ago from
Spoiler-Free Tips For The Last Of Us Part II

The reviews are in, and the wait is over. The Last of Us Part II is out today, and it is fantastic. But before you continue the story of Ellie and Joel, you may want a little guidance on how to get the most out of Naughty Dog’s latest masterpiece. That’s where these pointers might help: Our goal is to help you discover important details and strategies without diminishing the impact of the story or action. So whether you’re already playing The Last of Us Part II or are eagerly preparing to begin, you should be able to find something useful here.

Embrace stealth Though you have plenty of lethal weapons at your disposal, playing The Last of Us Part II like a traditional third-person shooter is a losing proposition. Ammo isn’t plentiful enough to approach every encounter like a straight-up firefight, so you should get comfortable with the idea of sneaking around as much as possible. That doesn’t mean you’re limited to just crouch-walking behind everyone for a stealth kill; you have a wide range of options you can employ. Being able to go prone is a big change from the original game, so don’t neglect that and the different possibilities it opens up. You can cause distractions and crawl right by some encounters, but you may also need to take out the opposition. In those cases, don’t forget to craft silencers and use your arrows.

Spoiler-Free Tips For The Last Of Us Part II

about X hours ago from
Spoiler-Free Tips For The Last Of Us Part II

The reviews are in, and the wait is over. The Last of Us Part II is out today, and it is fantastic. But before you continue the story of Ellie and Joel, you may want a little guidance on how to get the most out of Naughty Dog’s latest masterpiece. That’s where these pointers might help: Our goal is to help you discover important details and strategies without diminishing the impact of the story or action. So whether you’re already playing The Last of Us Part II or are eagerly preparing to begin, you should be able to find something useful here.

Embrace stealth Though you have plenty of lethal weapons at your disposal, playing The Last of Us Part II like a traditional third-person shooter is a losing proposition. Ammo isn’t plentiful enough to approach every encounter like a straight-up firefight, so you should get comfortable with the idea of sneaking around as much as possible. That doesn’t mean you’re limited to just crouch-walking behind everyone for a stealth kill; you have a wide range of options you can employ. Being able to go prone is a big change from the original game, so don’t neglect that and the different possibilities it opens up. You can cause distractions and crawl right by some encounters, but you may also need to take out the opposition. In those cases, don’t forget to craft silencers and use your arrows.