All Articles: Halo Wars 2

Xbox Store Today: Halo Wars 2, Zombie Vikings, Shift Happens, more

Today’s Xbox Games Store update includes four heads for the future in one game and to the past for three retro-inspired games.

Fans have been asking for a sequel to Halo Wars for years, and now Microsoft has delivered with the Xbox One release of Halo Wars 2. Fans who purchase the Xbox One edition through the Xbox Games Store will also receive access to the game on Windows 10 thanks to the Xbox Play Anywhere program, but everyone will get a chance to guide their futuristic soldiers with its real-time strategy gameplay.

Also available to download today for the Xbox One is Zombie Vikings, a side-scrolling hack and slash starring the “most fearsome Vikings ever raised from Norse soil.” Up to four players will be able to fight back against a menagerie of monsters as they search for Odin’s missing eye. The Xbox One is also home to a second new side-scroller today with the release of Shift Happens. Players will solve puzzles, collect coins, and go on a “comical yet dramatic” adventure.

Finally today, Xbox One owners will have the chance to download Vaccine, a survival horror game inspired by the genre’s PSone-era beginnings. As part of a special bio-hazard rapid response team, players will have to race against time to find a cure for a deadly disease in a house full of mutated monsters.

That’s all for today, but you can learn more about any of these titles after the break. (more…)

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Microsoft’s “Epic 2017” includes Crackdown 3, Sea of Thieves, Tacoma, Cuphead, and more

We’re nearly to the end of February, but Microsoft thought today was a great day to launch their first major game of 2017, Halo Wars 2. To celebrate, the consolemaker turned the spotlight on their “Epic 2017” in a special episode of This Week on Xbox.

Besides delving deeper into the latest addition to the Halo franchise, Larry “Major Nelson” Hyrb and friends explore Crackdown 3, Phantom Dust, Sea of Thieves, State of Decay 2, and several indie games (including Ron Gilbert’s Thimbleweed Park and Studio MDHR’s Cuphead) set to launch this year through the ID@Xbox program.

Microsoft’s Chris Charla also confirmed that ID@Xbox developers will have a major presence at GDC 2017, and Microsoft’s Showcase will include more than 20 titles. GDC attendees will get a chance to play Fullbright’s Tacoma (and many others) when the conference kicks off in San Francisco next week.

Finally, Phil “Head of Xbox” Spencer had a few more words to say about Microsoft’s “Epic 2017” on the Xbox Wire, and he also confirmed that a remake of Voodoo Vince will be available for the PC and Xbox One this Spring.

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New Retail Releases: Halo Wars 2, Berserk and the Band of the Hawk

It’s the calm before the (Switch) storm in the latest New Retail Releases report…

If you opted to skip last week’s release of the Halo Wars 2: Ultimate Edition (which includes access to the Season Pass and Halo Wars: Definitive Edition), Microsoft is giving you another chance this week with the Standard Edition launch of Halo Wars 2 for the Xbox One and Windows 10 (which also includes an Xbox One download thanks to the Xbox Play Anywhere program). The real-time strategy game picks up 28 years after its predecessor and introduces players to a new enemy, Atriox, and his loyal army, The Banished. Players will be able to fight it out in the single-player Campaign, several different online multiplayer modes, and the card-based Blitz Mode.

Also available this week is Berserk and the Band of the Hawk, the latest Warriors game from Koei Tecmo and Omega Force. Available for the PS4, Berserk and the Band of the Hawk is based on the Berserk manga series by Kentarou Miura and follows Guts, Griffith, Casca, and the Band of the Hawk as they battle demons.

We’ll be back later this week with a look at all the latest digital titles that’ll soon be available to download through the PlayStation Store, Xbox Games Store, and Nintendo eShop.

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Xbox Store Today: Halo Wars 2 Ultimate Edition, Typoman, Vertical Drop Heroes HD

The Halo franchise returns as Halo Wars 2: Ultimate Edition is now available to download for the Xbox One. This special edition of the real-time strategy game includes the base game, a Halo Wars 2 Season Pass, and access to Halo Wars: Definitive Edition. Play five days early and get a head start on the single-player Campaign, online multiplayer battles, and the card-based Blitz Mode.

If you’re looking for something a little slower paced, the 2D puzzle platformer Typoman might be just your speed. Also now available to download for the Xbox One, Typoman asks players to struggle through “a dark and hostile world.” Thankfully, they’ll have a cache of letters available to create solutions to the puzzles blocking their way.

Finally today, Vertical Drop Heroes HD has also been released for the Xbox One. The “procedural platformer RPG hybrid with roguelike elements” drops players into a world of randomly generated stages and asks them to survive for as long as they can.

You can learn more about all of these games after the break. (more…)

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New Retail Releases: For Honor, Sniper Elite 4, Halo Wars 2 Ultimate Edition, More

Five new games will be available on store shelves this week, and three of them will ask players to study the art of war…

The combat-heavy For Honor certainly fits the theme, and Ubisoft’s action game will pit some of history’s strongest warriors against each other. Coming to the PC, PS4, and Xbox One this week, For Honor asks players to choose their Faction (Knights, Vikings, or Samurai) and take them into battle in a single-player Campaign and an online Multiplayer Mode.

Another historical skirmish will be waged on the PS4 and Xbox One this week in Sniper Elite 4. Once again developed by Rebellion, Sniper Elite 4 transports players back to World War II and provides them with a series of missions for the Allies on the Italian front. The Day One Edition will also give early adopters the chance to kill Hitler in the “Target: Fuhrer” bonus mission.

It’s unlikely that future conflicts will play out like they do in science fiction, but Halo Wars 2: Ultimate Edition will give fans of the franchise a chance to try out 21st century tactics against Atriox and his Banished followers. The real time strategy game will be available for the Xbox One and as an Windows 10 Digital Code (which also includes an Xbox One download thanks to the Xbox Play Anywhere program), and the Ultimate Edition will be bundled with the Season Pass and a digital copy of Halo Wars: Definitive Edition.

And speaking of bundles, an Xbox One S 1TB + Halo Wars 2: Ultimate Edition Bundle will also launch this week, alongside a brand new Xbox One S 500GB + Forza Horizon 3 Bundle.

A different kind of war will take place on the racetracks of Ride 2, which will be released for the PC, PS4, and Xbox One this week. The hyperrealistic motorcycle racing sim will include more than 230 licensed bikes, as well as 1,200 real-world parts, 800 accessories, and over 30 tracks.

Finally, a special Retail Edition of Earthlock: Festvial of Magic will be released for the PS4. Currently available to download from the PlayStation Store, Earthlock is a turn-based RPG that features a very retro sensibility.

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The Halo Wars 2 Launch Trailer is like every alien invasion movie rolled into one

Developers at 343 Industries love to refer to the Halo franchise as a Star Wars saga for a new generation. I’m not sure if the Master Chief and Cortana will ever be as well known as Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, the development certainly knows how to put together a thrilling sci-fi action sequence. Case in point… the new Halo Wars 2 launch trailer.

If you’re not a scholar of Halo lore, don’t worry, Microsoft’s Larry “Major Nelson” Hyrb offered up a few more details about the trailer, and the real time strategy game’s many feature, on his eponymous blog:

After experiencing a pyrrhic victory following the events of the first Halo Wars, Captain Cutter and the brave crew of the UNSC Spirit of Fire wake up after 28 years of cryosleep to discover themselves orbiting a familiar Forerunner construct; Halo 3 fans, you know what it is. After receiving a distress signal and sending down some Spartans to investigate, the crew meets Atriox – an incredibly dangerous Brute who is as intelligent as he is strong. He poses a grave threat to humanity, and it’s up to you to stop him and his Banished.

In addition to the robust campaign, Halo Wars 2 is packed with a full suite of multiplayer modes that are suited to players of all skill levels and familiarity with real time strategy (RTS). Build your base, assemble your army and battle for control of the map in Domination, test your strategies solo or with a friend against AI in Skirmish, fight to hold more bases than your opponent in a timed Strongholds match, duke it out until you’re the last one standing in Deathmatch, or jump straight into the action with the all-new deck building multiplayer experience, Blitz.

Halo Wars 2 will be available for the PC and Xbox One on February 21. As an Xbox Play Anywhere title, players who opt for the digital edition of the game will receive access to it on both platforms for no extra charge.

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343 Industries is working on “super secret future stuff” related to Halo

Halo 5: Guardians was released late last year, so it’s pretty much assumed that Microsoft and 343 Industries have already begun work on Halo 6. That assumption was reinforced on Friday when Community Manager Brian “Ske7ch” Jarrard said the development team shared some “super secret future stuff” about the Halo franchise with him in a new post on Halo Waypoint:

I can’t really say anything of substance but yesterday we had a studio-wide presentation by Tim Longo, Halo Creative Director, on some super interesting topics pertaining to super secret future stuff. All I can say is that I left that meeting feeling very excited [me too – Grim].

Jarrard doesn’t specifically call out Halo 6, but believe it or not, the game was actually announced all the way back in 2011 as part of the “new trilogy” that began with Halo 4.

In other Halo news, Jarrard also revealed the Achievements for Halo Wars: Definitive Edition, which will be released as a “Game Preview” title on December 20 for everyone who pre-ordered Halo Wars 2. A total of 75 Achievements (including a mix of new and old Achievements) will be included and they’re worth 1,500 Gamerscore.

But hopefully, this mention of “super secret future stuff” is the first sign that an official re-announcement for Halo 6 is coming soon.

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Halo Wars 2 Cinematic Trailer unveiled at Game Awards 2016

Microsoft took to the Game Awards stage to show off a cinematic trailer for Halo Wars 2. The trailer gave us a first look at the game’s big bad… Atriox, a Brute commander who wants to destroy both humanity and the Covenant. Atriox and his followers, known as The Banished, look to be quite the formidable foes.

Microsoft also revealed a new trailer for Halo Wars: Definitive Edition, which you’ll receive if you pre-order the digital version of Halo Wars 2. Halo Wars: Definitive Edition will be available on December 20th and the trailer can be found after the break. (more…)

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