Chronicles – Heroes Of The Storm

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Chronicles – Heroes Of The Storm

MOBAS (and "hero brawlers" if we want to go with Blizzard's designation for Heroes of the Storm) are bigger than ever on the PC scene. With a long history of this style of game coming from the original DotA map in Warcraft III (and many lesser known frontrunners of the genre like the Aeon of Strife and Tides of Blood), I'm always interested in bringing new players into the sometimes intimidating fold.

Mike Futter was in town this week to grace us with his newsy presence, and we decided it might be fun to hop into a Heroes of the Storm match. It's Mike's first game - while the MOBA genre can be difficult to breach for new players, Heroes of the Storm places accessibility at the head of the table. Will we win or be destroyed? Check out this episode of Chronicles to find out!

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Creating The Sandbox Gameplay Of Just Cause 3

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Created by the recently-founded New York division of Avalanche Studios and led by the new game director Roland Lesterlin, Just Cause 3 is bringing the series' unique brand of chaos and fun to the Mediterranean. Our December cover story on the game covers our hands-on experience, but we spoke to Lesterlin and Avalanche's chief creative officer and co-founder Christofer Sundberg to hear their thoughts on what makes the sandbox gameplay of Just Cause 3 so appealing. 

Watch the video below to learn about the additions to the Just Cause gameplay you know, whether or not a game like this needs a story, and why the game doesn't include dinosaurs and jetpacks... yet.

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Breaking Down The Dragon Age: Inquisition Romance Options

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Breaking Down The Dragon Age: Inquisition Romance Options

The weight of the world may be on your shoulders, but that doesn't mean you won't find love along the way. Dragon Age: Inquisition has multiple romance options available, some specific to certain genders and races. You don't have to romance someone, since you might not find someone you want to cozy up with, and that's perfectly fine. However, for those who want to take the romantic plunge, we are giving you some insight into each character to help you make the decision. After all, it takes time and effort to woo these characters, so it's best to make the decision as early as possible.

If you want to romance someone, your best bet is to do their personal side quests and choose the heart option whenever you see it appear in conversation. This game doesn't have a set relationship meter like the past, but notifications appear that show whether characters approve or disapprove of your actions, letting you gauge where you stand with them. Basically, you want to pay attention to these reactions and not have them constantly disapprove of you.

Note: If you don't want to know which characters are potential love interests, don't read on.

How To Unlock Batman Of Zur-En-Arrh In Lego Batman 3

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How To Unlock Batman Of Zur-En-Arrh In Lego Batman 3

Most of DC Comics' recognizable characters are included in Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham, but only a few of them are linked to achievements or trophies. One of these characters is Batman of Zur-En-Arrh, a character that first appeared in comic books in 1958, and was rightfully lost to the past until DC decided to revive him in 2008.

To unlock this odd version of Batman, who has no special abilities, head to the Batcave's trophy room. On the raised platform holding the Red Brick terminal, rests a chest with three locks. You'll need to activate all of these to open the chest, which contains the character token for Batman of Zur-En-Arrh.

The first lock switch is directly to the right of the chest. Smash the box and assemble the lever. Pull it to release the left-most lock. The right-most lock is located under the staircase leading up to this platform. Smash the bricks and stand on the switch. The central lock is directly above the joker code entry box to the right. Shoot Batman's rocket at the metal casing, and then use a different character with flight to fly up to the lever. Throw it and backtrack to the chest to grab the character token for Batman of Zur-En-Arrh. You'll need to purchase him from the character selection menu. Select him as your character and you'll be rewarded with a 20-point achievement or bronze trophy.

Test Chamber – We're Still Playing Super Smash Bros. Wii U's 8-Player Mode

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Is this the final chapter in Game Informer's 8-player Super Smash Bros. Wii U trilogy?

Join some returning and some new players as myself, Wade Wojcik, Mike Futter, Andrew Reiner, Tim Turi, and interns Jason Dafnis, Matt Stolpe, and Sam Stewart battle in the biggest stage that has ever existed in a Smash Bros. game.

To see our first 8-player Smash Bros. Wii U video head here. For our second 8-player Super Smash Bros. Wii U video, head here.

Opinion – HD Remakes Need A Scene Select Mode

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Like many a gamer my age, the Kingdom Hearts series is near and dear to my heart. I vividly remember putting the first game into my PlayStation 2 and being serenaded by the now-iconic Dearly Beloved on its menu screen. From that first moment on I could never break away from the series, no matter how incredibly convoluted its plot became. Those games have a flavor of wonder and melancholy (probably sea salt) so idiosyncratic that I find myself craving it even now, 12 years after the first game’s release.

But when Square Enix announced it would be releasing HD remakes of nearly every title in the series, I wasn’t able to muster up my usual excitement. Sure, I was plenty enthused at the thought of playing some of my favorite moments in all of gaming with a new, crisp sheen, but the announcements ignited a newfound reluctance in me to play through tiresome segments like Wonderland and Olympus Coliseum. To clarify, I don’t hate those levels. My reluctance stems from having played that first Kingdom Hearts game three times over, mixed with a loathing for the series’ penchant for recycling content (here’s looking at you 358/2 and Re:coded). I wound up getting Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix — and I plan to purchase its follow up — but I gritted my teeth through Destiny Islands. I couldn’t help but wish I was already at the good bits.

Test Chamber – Assassin's Creed Rogue

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Test Chamber – Assassin's Creed Rogue

On this episode of Test Chamber, we dive into the opening moments of Assassin's Creed Rogue, learning of Shay Patrick Cormac's dark origins that lead him to becoming an assassin hunter. According to Game Informer's Matt Miller, this is the better of the two Assassin's Creed games released by Ubisoft this year. He says Rogue is "one of the biggest and most varied titles in the franchise to date."

You can take a look at our lengthy Test Chamber of Assassin's Creed Unity here.

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Test Chamber – Dragon Age: Inquisition, Part 2

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Test Chamber – Dragon Age: Inquisition, Part 2

BioWare clearly listened to feedback regarding what players liked and didn't like in previous entries in the Dragon Age series. As a result, Inquisition feels like it borrows from the best of its predecessors while exploring new ideas, and we take a look at those idea in this episode of Test Chamber.

Andrew Reiner, Kim Wallace, and I sit down and spend some time in a few different areas of Inquisition's large world. We see some of the variety in the environments, look at the wealth of available quests, and talk about the characters. Kim even fights her first dragon...with hilarious results. 

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Test Chamber – The First 45 Minutes Of Dragon Age: Inquisition

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The first steps of a long journey can be daunting, but Dragon Age: Inquisition throws you right into the action and doesn't let you look back. In this episode of Test Chamber, we play through the opening sequence of BioWare's upcoming RPG, going from the start screen to the dramatic moment that the "Dragon Age: Inquisition" title appears.

Kim Wallace and I have each sunk dozens of hours into Inquisition already (my review), and you can join us for a discussion of the new mechanics, characters, and features – all while seeing what to expect from the opening moments of the game.

For those worried about spoilers: You won't see much that hasn't been covered in pre-release information. The whole sequence basically introduces your hero and chronicles the official establishment of the Inquisition, without any big twists or reveals. If you don't mind seeing some content from later in the game (but still not too spoiler-filled), check out our other episode on Dragon Age: Inquisition.