Most Recent: PC

New Releases: Street Fighter V, Fire Emblem Fates, Project X Zone 2, More

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This week’s new release report has “Made in Japan” written all over it.

After upgrading and enhancing Street Fighter IV nearly half-a-dozen times, Capcom is finally ready to move on to Street Fighter V this week. The PC and PS4 fighting game will include 16 characters, and the publisher plans to add new characters to the roster every few months as downloadable content. Fans have been waiting for this one for a while, but I’m very interested to see how the Street Fighter franchise will change without the promise of a “Super” or “Ultra” expansion in the future.

Nintendo brings back another long-awaited sequel this week with the release Fire Emblem Fates on the 3DS. To give players a choice in how the story proceeds, the massive game was actually split into two parts, Birthright and Conquest, so players lead a rebellion or smash it. A third path, pitting both sides against an even greater evil, will be available as a downloadable expansion later this Spring. A beautifully-rendered New 3DS XL: Fire Emblem Fates Edition can also be picked up on store shelves, but it won’t include a copy of either Fire Emblem Fates game.

Speaking of complex strategy games on the 3DS, Fire Emblem Fates will get some competition this week from Project X Zone 2, Monolith Soft’s ridiculous quad-company crossover. Beloved characters from games published by Capcom, Bandai Namco, Sega, and Nintendo are joining forces to battle a dimension-hopping foe.

Finally this week, Nintendo will re-release Bayonetta 2 in a single-disc version that drops the Bayonetta bonus disc. If you’ve been waiting to pick up one of the best action games the Wii U has to offer, now’s your chance.

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Microsoft wants to make PC/Xbox One Cross-Buy a “platform feature”

xboxgamesstore-logoYesterday, Microsoft kicked off their own Cross-Buy program with the announcement that Quantum Break will receive a simultaneous launch on the Xbox One and PC on April 5. Xbox One owners who pre-order the game will receive a free copy of the Windows 10 version, and both games will include Cross-Save support, so progress you make on one platform will carry over to the other. Though I guess I should break in here and point out that not everyone is happy about this news.

Hopefully, those Xbox fans will come around as it looks like Microsoft has no plans to make Quantum Break’s Cross-Buy promotion a one-off. Posting on Twitter, the Head of Microsoft’s Xbox Division, Phil Spencer, has confirmed that Cross-Buy will be a “platform feature” for the PC and Xbox One going forward because he sees it as being “good for gamers”:

Microsoft has a large number of PC and Xbox One games in the works for 2016 including Halo Wars 2, Killer Instinct Season 3, ReCore, and Sea of Thieves, so I wouldn’t be surprised if any or all of them are announced as Cross-Buy titles in the near future.

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Call of Duty: Black Ops III marches to the top of January 2016’s list of best-selling games

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The NPD Group recently delivered their monthly report on the state of retail video game sales, and the market research firm once again crowned Call of Duty: Black Ops III as the best-selling game of the month. The military shooter’s January 2016 victory is its third straight, but the industry as a whole is in a bit of a slump due to last month’s lack of new releases.

According to GamesIndustry.biz, retail sales for new games totaled $212.7 million last month, down from $235.6 million in 2015. The NPD Group speculated that the lack of a highly-anticipated new title like Techland’s Dying Light might be the cause for the dip, which makes sense when you realize that only one new release, Lego Avengers, was able to crack the top ten. Across the entire industry, US consumers spent $605.2 million on games, consoles, and accessories in January 2016, which was slightly down from January 2015’s total of $627.6 million.

Grand Theft Auto V, Fallout 4, Minecraft, and a few others continue to tally impressive sales. And you can find them all in the full top ten list of January 2016’s best-selling games, which is available after the break. (more…)

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Activision confirms Skylanders 6, new Call of Duty from Infinity Ward, Destiny expansion in 2016; Destiny 2 coming in 2017

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Activision revealed a first look at their 2016 release slate during today’s quarterly financial report… and you’ll never believe what they announced. Nah, I’m just kidding, even an amateur prognosticator could figure out what Activision has in store for this year.

First up, the publisher confirmed that Infinity Ward will develop the next entry in the Call of Duty franchise, which will be released this Fall. The developer’s most recent game was 2013’s Call of Duty: Ghosts, and right now it’s unknown if they’ll continue with that story or move in a different direction. But we do the currently untitled Call of Duty 2016 will be Infinity Ward’s first in Activision’s new three-developer cycle for the series.

Activision is also aiming to launch the sixth entry in the Skylanders series in Fall 2016. Skylanders 6 is in development at Toys For Bob and will be released alongside Skylanders Academy, a new television series based on the franchise.

Bungie’s Destiny will receive more content in 2016, but don’t expect a full-fledged sequel just yet. Another “large” expansion to the original game will be released this year, and the famed developer announced they’ll launch Destiny 2 in 2017.

Finally, Blizzard got a chance to discuss their plans for 2016, but the developer just reiterated a release schedule that we’ve known for a while. Overwatch, their upcoming hero shooter, is on track for a Spring 2016 release on the PC, PS4, and Xbox One. And World of Warcraft: Legion, the sixth expansion to the world’s favorite MMO, will be released this Summer, just after the June premiere of the Warcraft movie.

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Ubisoft will release Watch Dogs 2, For Honor, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, and South Park: The Fractured But Whole before March 31, 2017

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Ubisoft may have put the kibosh on a new Assassin’s Creed game for 2016, but they have big plans for the rest of their portfolio in the near-term, including an official announcement for Watch Dogs 2. Ubisoft has been teasing a sequel to their techno-thriller for quite some time, so it shouldn’t be that much of a surprise that it’s taking over the release window for Assassin’s Creed (at least temporarily).

However, the further adventures of Aiden Pearce won’t be the only game that Ubisoft will release throughout their 2016-2017 fiscal year. The company also plans to launch For Honor, South Park: The Fractured But Whole, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands, and a new “high-potential AAA brand” between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017.

Ubisoft plans to reveal more information about their upcoming slate of games sometime in the next two weeks.

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Quantum Break getting PC version, Xbox One System Bundle, and free copy of Alan Wake

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Microsoft will continue to support gaming on Windows 10 this Spring with a simultaneous Xbox One/PC launch for Remedy’s Quantum Break on April 5. Best of all, everyone who digitally pre-orders the time-bending action game through the Xbox Games Store will receive a token to download the PC version for free.

Players who purchase Quantum Break on the Xbox One will also receive a download code for the Xbox 360 version of Remedy’s previous game, Alan Wake, and both of its downloadable expansions (The Signal and The Writer). Pre-ordering Quantum Break from participating retailers will also entitle players to an Xbox 360 download code for the action-oriented Alan Wake’s American Nightmare.

But what if you don’t own an Xbox One and your PC isn’t up to snuff? Then you might want to consider a Quantum Break System Bundle ($349), which will include a 500GB “Cirrus White” console, matching wireless controller, and full-game downloads of Quantum Break and Alan Wake.

Finally, Microsoft and Remedy also unveiled a new live-action trailer for Quantum Break today. In “The Cemetery,” protagonist Jack Joyce (Shawn Ashmore) begins to learn about the full extent of his powers as he mourns his brother (Dominic Monaghan). You can check out the video, along with game’s minimum and recommended system requirements, after the break. (more…)

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Ubisoft won’t release a new Assassin’s Creed game in Fall 2016

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Rumors began swirling a few months ago that Ubisoft was planning to give the Assassin’s Creed franchise a rest in 2016, and now it looks like those whispers were right on the money. In a new post on the UbiBlog, the publisher confirmed that we won’t be returning to the battle between the Assassins and the Templars this Fall:

This year, we also are stepping back and re-examining the Assassin’s Creed franchise. As a result, we’ve decided that there will not be a new Assassin’s Creed game in 2016. Since the release of Assassin’s Creed: Unity, we’ve learned a lot based on your feedback. We’ve also updated our development processes and recommitted to making Assassin’s Creed a premier open-world franchise. We’re taking this year to evolve the game mechanics and to make sure we’re delivering on the promise of Assassin’s Creed offering unique and memorable gameplay experiences that make history everyone’s playground.

But don’t worry, Ubisoft still has several Assassin’s Creed spinoffs in the pipeline for 2016, including the side-scrolling Assassin’s Creed Chronicles collection that was released last week. The publisher’s Motion Pictures arm will also release the long-awaited Assassin’s Creed feature film, which stars Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, on December 21.

Ubisoft promised to share more information about the future of the Asssassin’s Creed franchise soon.

Posted in News, PC, PS4, Xbox One |

A Day-By-Day Guide to All of 2016’s New Video Games (April – September)

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The Spring and Summer months are currently less dense with new releases than the first three months of the year, but that should change fairly soon, especially since publishers have staked a claim to every week from the beginning of April to the end of June with at least one big new release dropping every seven days.

Are you ready? Because here… we… go… (more…)

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