Seven Tips For Returning To (Or Starting Fresh) With Zelda: Majora’s Mask

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The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask released for the Nintendo 64 in 2000, and next week, it will re-release on 3DS. Despite launching only a few years after Ocarina of Time and sharing many of its gameplay mechanics, Majora’s Mask’s three-day repeating cycle created one of the biggest steps away from the traditional Zelda structure that the series has ever seen.

For this reason, many found the game difficult to approach or finish. The upcoming re-release affords the perfect excuse to revisit the game if it didn’t grab you in 2000, play it again after all these years, or play it for the first time. Regardless of which player you are, these tips will make getting back into the game (or into it for the first time) a breeze.

Always deposit before restarting the cycleEvery time you restart the three-day cycle, you lose your inventory. You keep your masks and items, but any bows, bombs, deku sticks or nuts, bottled items, or rupees you collected will disappear when you start over. There’s no way to save your items, but there is a way to keep your money, and that’s to deposit it in the bank.

Test Chamber – Life Is Strange: Episode 1

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Dontnod, the creators of Remember Me, are back with an episodic adventure series, Life is Strange. The game is grounded in reality, but comes with a twist: the ability to reverse time.

In this edition of Test Chamber, we take a look at the opening of the first episode, Chrysalis. Join Ben Reeves, intern Elise Favis, and me as we enter Max's dramatic world, take selfies, handle dangerous rivals, and play with time. 

For more on Life is Strange, check out our review of episode one

Test Chamber – Salt And Sanctuary

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Test Chamber – Salt And Sanctuary

Ska Studios is back with a "Soulsvania" title heavily inspired by the Souls series and Castlevania/platformers, and we had a chance to take a beta build of Salt and Sanctuary out for a spin.

With a robust selection of weapons and playstyles, players journey through an atmospheric world while leveling up, collecting gear, and taking on  massive bosses. Instead of souls, players collect salt, which is used in a similar fashion to level up and progress through skill trees. Bonfires are replaced by sanctuaries that function as checkpoints and places to restore potions and health.

Join Daniel Tack and Brian Shea as they explore this dark new world in this episode of Test Chamber. Let us know if you'd like to see some extended play in an episode of Chronicles!

Opinion – Your Choices Don't Matter In Telltale Games

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Opinion – Your Choices Don't Matter In Telltale Games

Spoiler warning: Multiple plot twists are mentioned for The Walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us. 

“This game series adapts to the choices you make. The story is tailored by how you play.” 

When booting up The Walking Dead for the first time, seeing this notice on-screen filled me with excitement and wonder. My choices, I thought, were going to change the game universe I was playing in and steer the storyline in new directions. I hesitated often, moving the joystick left to right on difficult decisions. The game kept me on the edge of my seat as I gripped the controller tightly in apprehension.

Cuphead's Creator Opens Up His Sketchbook

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StudioMDHR's Cuphead made an impression when it was shown during Microsoft's E3 press conference last year. When we hear the word "retro" used to describe a game's art style, many of us think of 8- or 16-bit sprites. Cuphead takes inspiration from material that's significantly older – cartoons from the '20s and '30s. I spoke with the indie studio's co-founders, Chad and Jared Moldenhauer, for a six-page feature that appears in the latest issue of Game Informer. There, the brothers speak about the intense process that goes into creating every hand-drawn frame of animation. Today, Chad was generous enough to share several pages from his sketchbook. They provide a glimpse at false starts, various oddities, and a few of the first designs that would lead to Cuphead himself.

You might spy a few familiar faces in the first page of Chad's sketches. "Ryu from Ninja Gaiden, Mario and a Ninja Turtle make cameos," he says."The last drawing on this page is based off of one of the earliest sketches I created for the game (before it was Cuphead)."

Question Of The Month Reader Responses: Issue #263

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Question Of The Month Reader Responses: Issue #263

In issue 261, we asked readers what their favorite game to play with friends is. Fighting, music, and shooting were all popular in-game activities. Here are some of the responses we received.

What's your favorite game to play with friends? Share your pick in the comments below!

Sacred Cow Barbecue Strikes Again

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Issue 261 marked the long-awaited return of Sacred Cow Barbecue, our annual randomly recurring feature that roasts the best games the industry has to offer. While good-humored gamers enjoyed our sendup of their favorite titles, others weren't laughing, and we've compiled the best (and worst) responses we received.

Previous installments of Sacred Cow Barbecue have focused on classics like Super Mario Bros. and Final Fantasy, but this year we put the flames to some more modern hits. Mass Effect 2, Assassin's Creed, Dark Souls, and Minecraft all got their unenviable time in the spotlight, along with a host of other games. Kingdom Hearts fans were particularly unamused by our take on the cartoony RPG series, and didn't hesitate to share their discontent with us. Below are some of the responses we received; as always, we've withheld the names of our irate respondents to protect the humorless. 

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DMi Games' Vision For NASCAR

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At the beginning of the year NASCAR video gamers were looking forward to a new season and a new game when news came out that Eutechnyx had transferred its licensing rights to the newly formed DMi Games. The company may have seemingly sprung from nowhere, but the pair at its heart – president Ed Martin and CEO Tom Dusenberry – have been involved in NASCAR video games for many years. We recently talked with Ed Martin about DMi Games and what it hopes to achieve with the license this season and beyond.

What kinds of games is DMi going to deliver?Martin's motto to us on this topic was, "right game, right fan, right platform." DMi is planning multiple titles on different platforms, and it wants to try and capture the many NASCAR fans who haven't historically bought a game before – whether that's because it wasn't the right kind of mobile experience or because the sim-based titles up until now haven't spoken to them.

Madden 15's Super Bowl Prediction Was No Fluke

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Madden 15's Super Bowl Prediction Was No Fluke

While nobody would have predicted that in real life the Seahawks would choose to pass the ball instead of activating Beast Mode with Marshawn Lynch with victory in its sights, Madden NFL 15 has been surprisingly prescient in its virtual Super Bowl predictions.

The game (which got last night's Super Bowl score dead on with the Patriots winning 28-24) has predicted the Super Bowl winner 9 of the last 12 times – even stretching back to the PlayStation 2/Xbox days. It also has correctly named the game's MVP four times out of the last seven years. 

Considering that the game's sim engine habitually low-balls stats in individual games when playing against real players, it definitely seems to have a knack for getting the basics right when it comes to simulating what goes on for games when real people aren't playing (you can check out our own season-long sim for 2014).

Five More Big Games To Play Instead Of Watching The Big Game

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Last year I put together five big games to play instead of watching tonight's important football game. Here are five more.

These games within video games aren’t necessarily large in physical size. Rather, they play important roles in the context and stories in which they exist making them big, important games.

If you don’t plan on watching tonight's big game, but want to join the inevitable work conversations surrounding it on Monday, you can play one of these big games. You may not be able to talk about the big game, but at least you will be able to talk about a big game.