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Minecraft on consoles gets female character; Sony platforms receive Simpsons Skin Pack

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Mojang made three big Minecraft-related announcements today…

First, Mojang has announced that all console players will be able to play as Alex, a female character, beginning Wednesday. According to Mojang’s Owen Hill (writing on the company’s official website), Alex was added to the game because “jolly old Steve doesn’t really represent the diversity of our playerbase.” All eight “Alex” skins will be available as a free update on the PS3, PS4, PS Vita, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

Alex has been available for PC players since last year.

Today’s second big announcement is that The Simpsons Skin Pack will be available to download on PlayStation platforms this Wednesday. It’ll be priced at $2.99 and include 24 of your favorite Springfieldians.

Finally, Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition will receive 30 additional Achievements that were introduced to the game in Minecraft: Xbox One Edition. A few extra music tracks will also be included in this update.

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NBA 2K15 says the Golden State Warriors will win this year’s NBA Championship

nba2k15-boxSportswriters across the country are getting ready to anoint Stephen Curry as the best basketball player in the NBA. NBA 2K15 publisher 2K Games won’t argue with their, as the publisher predicts Curry’s Golden State Warriors will win the 2015 NBA Championship.

Using an NBA 2K15 simulation, 2K Games believes that Golden State will emerge victorious over the Cleveland Cavaliers in a six-game series. Their path through the playoffs will take them past the New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trailblazers, and the San Antonio Spurs (in a series that will go the full seven games). If the Cavaliers play their part, they’ll defeat the Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, and Atlanta Hawks to reach the Finals. Real-life is currently cooperating as both Golden State and Cleveland each enjoy 3-0 leads in their respective first round matchups.

According to 2K’s simulation, Stephen Currey and Lebron James will clash in the Finals, with each putting up multiple 30-point games. In the end, the Golden State Warriors will hoist the trophy with Curry also walking away with the Finals MVP.

If you’ve yet to play NBA 2K15 and you’re an Xbox Live Gold subscriber, you’ll be able to try out the game for free all weekend on your Xbox One. According to Xbox Wire, the free download will be available beginning today at 3:00 PM (Eastern Time) and will be operational through Monday, April 27 at 3:00 AM (also Eastern Time).

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An adventure game based on Adventure Time is in the works

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Little Orbit has announced they will publish an “action-oriented” adventure game based on Adventure Time this November. Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigations is in development at Vicious Cycle and will be released for the 3DS, PC, PS3, PS4, Wii U, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. In retrospect, an adventure game based on Adventure Time seems so obvious that I can’t believe it didn’t happen sooner.

Calling it “a complete departure from previous Adventure Time games,” Little Orbit’s Matt Scott is thrilled with the puzzle-solving and people-talking opportunities present in Finn and Jake Investigations:

Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigations is an all-new, real-time, fully 3D action-oriented twist on the classic story-driven graphic adventure game. Finn and Jake decide to carry on the profession of Finn’s foster parents, who were Professional Investigators. Confronted with mysterious Land of Ooo disappearances and strange events, players will interrogate colorful inhabitants, dispatch evil doers in fast-paced combat, solve mind-bending puzzles, explore new and familiar locations, and genuinely feel as if they have stepped into their own personal episode of Adventure Time.

Adventure Time‘s sixth season is currently airing on Cartoon Network.

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Nordic Games will release Legend of Kay Anniversary this Summer

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For an action platformer starring a samurai cat, Legend of Kay is one of the more amazing underdog stories in all of gaming. Initially released across Europe in early 2005, the game eventually made its way to America thanks to Capcom almost a year later. Five years after that, the game was resurrected by DreamCatcher Games, who elected to give it a DS port. Now, it looks like the game is coming back once more as Nordic Games has confirmed they will release Legend of Kay on a number of new platforms this Summer.

Now known as Legend of Kay Anniversary, German developer Kaiko has been tapped to bring the game to the PC, PS3, PS4, Wii U, and Xbox 360. Nordic plans to release Legend of Kay Anniversary as a budget title, but if it does well enough, it could finally spawn a sequel or two.

“Legend of Kay was a true gem on the PlayStation 2 platform,” said Reinhard Pollice, the Business and Product Development Director at Nordic Games. “Our strategy is to focus on our IPs and make them available to as many players as possible and also on the current generation of consoles. We [will] keep our options open to expand on the Legend of Kay franchise in the future.”

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Borderlands creator and Franchise Director Matthew Armstrong has left Gearbox

borderlands-11Matthew Armstrong, the creator and Franchise Director of all things Borderlands at Gearbox Software, has decided to leave the company. This news comes just a week after 2K confirmed the closure of 2K Australia, the development team behind Borderlands: The Handsome Collection.

Announcing his departure on Twitter, Armstrong said it was time for new adventures:

Armstrong elaborated on his reasons for leaving to Game Informer. The developer said he was an inventor who was “ready to make something new.” There was no anger in Armstrong’s resignation, but with all of Gearbox’s Borderlands projects complete, he was able to leave “without damaging Borderland or Gearbox too much.”

Gearbox announced a desire to begin development on Borderlands 3 at the first-ever PAX South expo in January. At the time, CEO Randy Pitchford said the company wanted to “look outside Gearbox to find fresh ideas for the future of the franchise.”

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Video Game Release Calendar Changelog #4: The 2015 Calendar is Taking Shape

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Don’t Forget! This is just a changelog of recently announced release dates. Warp Zoned’s complete Video Game Release Calendar includes every title we could find with a 2015, 2016, or unannounced release date.

The 2015 E3 Expo is slightly less than two months away, and that means gamemakers have decided that now is the time to lock down those all-important Fall release dates while pushing some games to 2016. But first, some of this Spring’s biggest titles finally have confirmed dates including Project CARS (May 6 on PC and May 12 on PS4/Xbox One), Splatoon (May 29), and the full release of Heroes of the Storm (June 2)

But, I’m sure you’re going to ask next, what about the Fall? It kicks off in appropriate fashion with the launch of Madden NFL 16 on August 25 before moving into the crossover-craziness of Lego Dimensions on September 27. Nintendo’s Mario creation kit, Mario Maker, will also debut sometime in September.

No no, you say, Fall really begins in October and November. What’s on tap for then? Glad you asked, my overly pushy imaginary friend. On October 27, Microsoft will release Halo 5: Guardians on October 27. Electronic Arts will follow that up with another major sci-fi shooter, Star Wars: Battlefront, on November 17. In between, Activision will likely release Call of Duty: Black Ops III in early November, though that date is tentative for now.

Other Fall highlights this year include Guitar Hero Live and the North American release of Fatal Frame 5 on the Wii U. Both will set down roots on a specific date soon, but both are coming out in 2015.

However, two highly-anticipated games won’t be coming out in 2015 as previously thought. Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda Wii U and Remedy’s Quantum Break have both been pushed back to the nebulous “TBA 2016.” They’ve been joined by newly-announced entries from two well-liked franchises… Deus Ex: Mankind Divided and Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness.

The full list of games included in our fourth Video Game Release Calendar Changelog can be found after the break. (more…)

Posted in 3DS, News, PC, PS3, PS4, Vita, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One |


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Life Is Strange: Episode 3 will be released in May

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Dontnod Entertainment wants to assure everyone that they’ll be able to jump back into the story of Life Is Strange very soon. According to a new post on Twitter, players will be able to continue experiencing the adventures of Max and Chloe in Episode 3 in May:

Life Is Strange Episode 3 will be subtitled Chaos Theory and it’ll be available for the PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

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Hype Fatigue: Why I’m Exhausted With Viral Marketing, Elaborate Advertising Campaigns, and Countdowns

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The machinations of video game marketers absolutely baffle me. Obviously, “video game marketing” is an incredibly broad term that encompasses hundreds of different campaigns a year, all run by different people, and all carried out with different expectations. Whipsawing between a seemingly neverending series of hype events and viral campaigns has started to make my head spin. Following hashtags and decoding secret messages has become de rigueur if you want to come up with all the latest game news. Last week, three publishers launched three very different viral campaigns that made me long for the days of the simple press release/trailer combo platter. But maybe they aren’t to blame, as video game marketing has been growing increasingly insane for years now. (more…)

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