Games

Call Of Duty: Vanguard Multiplayer | New Gameplay Today

Game Informer News Feed - Tue, 09/07/2021 - 18:30

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Publisher: Activision Developer: Sledgehammer Games Release: November 5, 2021 Rating: Mature Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Call of Duty: Vanguard arrives on November 5th, with various opportunities to dive into slices of the game ahead of time via betas, early access periods, and more.

In this episode of New Gameplay Today, join us for a look at many of the traditional Call of Duty multiplayer modes that find their way into the annual title releases. Of particular note, the Patrol mode functions as a high-intensity take on the classic Hardpoint game type, except instead of bustling about the map from point to point, there’s one hardpoint for the whole game – but it’s constantly moving! The capture point “patrols” around the map, making for some interesting situations as it’s constantly exposed to new sightlines and of course, incendiary grenade spam windows. So pop in, pop out, and check every direction as you roam the map alongside the moving hold point – it’s actually a pretty nice take on the classic mode without shaking things up too much.

It is important to keep in mind what is going on within Activision Blizzard at this time regarding ongoing allegations about the work culture. The ongoing lawsuit from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) against the company is over reported toxic workplace culture. The bulk of the suit focuses on "violations of the state's civil rights and equal pay laws," specifically regarding the treatment of women and other marginalized groups. To learn more about the proceedings thus far, including details listed in the lawsuit against Activision Blizzard, please check out our previous coverage here.

However, the real aspect of significance with the multiplayer here isn’t in the modes, as they’re all pretty much what you have come to expect from traditional multiplayer. The big, big difference is being able to select your speed. Combat pacing gives players access to dial in their preferred game pacing, whether that’s a traditional Call of Duty experience with Assault, or have a slower game via Tactical or a veritable kill fest with Blitz. Time to engagement, number of players in a game, and more are all addressed with these combat pacing options, and it amounts to a simple tickbox you select before heading into any of the core offerings. It may seem like a small thing, but it creates a whole lot of options in terms of preferred playstyle.

Are you interested in Call of Duty: Vanguard? Waiting to see more from the campaign, Zombies, and the Champion Hill modes? Or are you just ready for a brand new Warzone? Let us know in the comments!

Categories: Games

Everything We Know About Elden Ring

Game Informer News Feed - Tue, 09/07/2021 - 00:00

Publisher: Bandai Namco Developer: From Software Release: January 21, 2022 Rating: Rating Pending Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Ohhhhh, Elden Ring! For years, we’ve wondered when this dark fantasy collaboration between From Software and G.R.R. Martin would be coming. We have a release date and a ton of information regarding this open-world take on the From Software action-RPG formula. Elden Ring takes aspects of the Souls franchise, Bloodborne, and even Sekiro and rolls them into one epic amalgamation. Got questions? We’ve got answers. Let’s break down everything we know about Elden Ring.

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Who Is Making It?

From Software has essentially redefined itself over the last decade as the one to beat in the action-RPG genre. From a game destined for failure internally, Demon’s Souls, to come out of the gates blazing as a game that played by its own rules and challenged players to explore, discover, and struggle during a time when heavy-handed tutorialization was becoming the norm. From Software is helming this project, with some of the story, lore, and world-building coming from a collaboration with A Song of Ice and Fire’s G.R.R. Martin.

Who Am I Playing?

You play as a Tarnished, attempting to restore the shattered titular Elden Ring. Like many of the Souls games, you create your own character here to use from scratch. You can play as a brutal melee bonecrusher, an adept magic-user powered by weaponized wizardry, an archer, or any combination of multiple fantasy archetypes. As always, you won’t be ruled by your starting kit, and can take your character in any direction you wish over the course of the game.

How Does The Open World Work?

There are six critical “Legacy Dungeons” featured in Elden Ring that feature huge bosses, fog gates, and tons of secrets to discover in a typical looping From Software dungeon design. These areas are NOT present in the open world and are isolated, gated-off instances that preserve the nature of a curated dungeon experience. However, outside in the larger open world, you can ride your spirit steed at lightning speed all over the place, teleport to obtained checkpoints at will, and roam around to find all kinds of secrets, mini-dungeons, and even field bosses. While these experiences are isolated from each other, you’ll take all the special items and abilities discovered in the open-world into those legacy dungeons to give you a fighting chance against the challenging bosses and twisting levels that are found within.

What Tools Do I Have To Fight?

Like most other games in the From Software suite, you can “level up” at checkpoints using obtained currency, which will make battles much easier. Of course, finding new weapons, spells, and abilities is also critical to success. Co-op play is available, and you can have up to two other allies helping with a boss or an area. Stealthy play can be extremely helpful. With a chapter out of Sekiro, grass, and other areas to hide in and move around giant dangers. Or perhaps you wish to sneak up and pick off large packs of enemies one at a time, making a lethal scenario far more manageable. Elden Ring also introduces the concept of non-player-character summons on demand, which let you collect and upgrade various spirits that can be unleashed to offer serious support, from a gaggle of goblins that tank or attack and more importantly, distract and take the attention from a boss monster or many enemy targets that would be overwhelming to take by yourself. While there’s no doubt that Elden Ring is likely to be challenging, there are many tools and strategies to explore that give you the edge.

Okay, this just sounds like Dark Souls 4? Is this really just Dark Souls 4?

No way. While the core is absolutely based in From’s master of ARPGs and contains many of the same framework elements like checkpoints, fog gates, big boss battles, and levels full of secrets (that no doubt have elevators that you can jump off of in motion to find hidden areas), the open world and everything about it add serious and significant gameplay alterations. Map fragments let you unlock the mysteries of the overworld, you can blast around the world with unbridled speed and verticality thanks to the spirit steed, and explore areas and encounters that are absolutely massive in scale and scope to anything that’s in existing From games. More importantly, because of the open-world aspect, you can truly build your own path through the game. While everyone is going to head though the legacy dungeons, how you traverse the open world, what you find, when you find it, and how you use them offers some incredible new choice aspects to the formula, far more than the minor branching paths that players are familiar with from Souls. That said, if you like the Souls games, you’re probably going to be right at home immediately.

When is the game coming out?

Elden Ring is scheduled to release on January 21, 2022 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

Dive deeper into various Elden Ring aspects right here:

Categories: Games

Who Is Lilith, The Main Villain Of Marvel's Midnight Suns?

Game Informer News Feed - Mon, 09/06/2021 - 17:00

Publisher: 2K Games Developer: Firaxis Games Release: 2022 Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC

As we already covered in a previous look at Marvel's Midnight Suns, you play as The Hunter. This all-new hero is sought out by an all-star cast of Marvel characters and awakened to help fight off the evil entity known as Lilith. But why is Lilith so important that she requires the combined powers of Marvel's most powerful heroes in addition to an ancient, legendary warrior? We spoke to the team at Firaxis Games to learn more about the menacing villain.

Lilith was once a warrior of light as a member of a race called The Blood. She is a descendant of the Elder Gods and fought the forces of darkness alongside her sister, Caretaker, for thousands of years. During the late 1600s, Lilith sold her soul to a corrupted, evil Elder God named Chthon in a moment of weakness.

"Your best villains, in their mind, they're not evil; they're doing something for good, but her motivations for her fall are actually very personal and very tragic," director of narrative Chad Rocco says.

© 2021 MARVEL

Chthon is so evil that he was banished to another dimension by his fellow Gods billions of years ago, but he has kept his sights on returning to Earth ever since. Following this dark deal, Lilith is corrupted by Chthon, and she gives in to the darkness. She creates a monstrous, demonic army known as the Lilin and she wages war on humanity. According to legend, this invasion becomes the heart of the Salem Witch Trials. The only thing that stops her from her goals is a team of heroes known as the Midnight Suns led by a great warrior called The Hunter.

Together, the team defeats Lilith and seals her away for centuries. The Midnight Suns hid her body and scattered the pages of the Darkhold, an evil grimoire authored by Chthon, across the planet. However, Hydra spent several hundred years hunting down the pages and searching for Lilith's tomb. At present day, they have one page left to find, and with the time of prophecy just months away, they stumble upon Lilith's tomb. Hydra's Dr. Faustus and his team use a combination of the Darkhold and Gamma science to resurrect Lilith, but Lilith immediately subjugates the Hydra forces and takes control to again try and fulfill the prophecy.

© 2021 MARVEL

While she may not have the name recognition of Thanos or Apocalypse, she's an Omega-level threat that perhaps even exceeds their power. She commands the Lilin, but her army is far more dangerous than simply a horde of faceless, nameless minions. Using her power, Lilith can corrupt even strong-willed, powerful people and creatures. These dark characters are known as The Fallen, iconic heroes and villains from across the Marvel Universe who have been corrupted by Lilith and bent to her will.

"We are telling this epic, world-ending storyline, so it was very important for us to have a large roster of recognizable villains for the heroes to fight against," creative director Jake Solomon says. "This is what makes Lilith so dangerous: Picture your favorite Omega-level supervillain in Marvel. You know... Thanos or Apocalypse or Ultron or Doom; Lilith is all of that and then some. Not only does she have godlike powers that grow stronger every day; not only does she have the Lilin, an unending army of demons at her disposal that the heroes are going to have to fight through; but with a single touch, Lilith can corrupt and command any villain or hero in the Marvel Universe."

With so many powers at her fingertips, even the strongest characters in Marvel's stable are capable of falling to Lilith. "It becomes a question of, 'How are you going to beat somebody like that?'" says Solomon. "The problem is, whoever you send at Lilith has a very good chance of coming back to you with glowing green eyes and an 'I love Lilith' sticker. She's not like any villain you've seen before in Marvel. That's a theme for us. We want to tell different stories. We want to show players a different side of even characters they know. Even The Fallen ... they're new versions of villains or heroes that you may recognize, but now they have new powers."

With Hydra, the Lilin, and The Fallen under her control, Lilith stages an assault on Doctor Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum. Strange, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, and a young Scarlet Witch narrowly survive the attack, and the Sanctum, along with its priceless artifacts, fall into the hands of Lilith. This is the catalyst for the heroes to come together, seek out the modern Midnight Suns, and resurrect The Hunter. 

Lilith is known as the Mother of Demons, but she's also the mother of The Hunter. This lineage gives The Hunter their power, and while The Hunter will stop at nothing to defeat Lilith, Lilith has a different perspective on their relationship. "I love that The Hunter and Lilith have a very asymmetric relationship," Solomon says. "The Hunter is like, 'You're evil. I'm here to destroy you.' and then Lilith is like, 'I love you. You're my child.' It just makes her a very interesting villain where she's like, 'You're just misguided. You're my child, and I love you, and I want us to be together,' and that makes a very interesting relationship to start the game off on the right foot."

"It's a story about a mother and a child," Rocco says. "Lilith and The Hunter may be opposed to one another, but there's a powerful connection between them, and it continues to develop across the game."

© 2021 MARVEL

While Lilith is beyond powerful, her resurrection is merely a stepping stone towards Hydra's ultimate goal: summoning Chthon. Because of the evil Elder God's role in writing the Darkhold, the wicked text has a will of its own and twists those under its influence – including Lilith – to fulfill the prophecy and restore Chthon to Earth. According to this prophecy, if the Darkhold is read under a once-in-a-billion-year celestial event known as the midnight sun, Chthon will be able to return to Earth. 

But why is that such a bad thing? The fallen Elder God wants nothing more than to consume, corrupt, and envelop the planet. However, before that can happen, Lilith must complete her own mission of corruption, so the Midnight Suns have their own window of opportunity to fight alongside The Hunter and stop Chthon before he's even restored.

We'll have to wait and see how the Midnight Suns and The Hunter take on the overwhelming power of Lilith and her followers. Marvel's Midnight Suns launches on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC in March 2022. For more on this exciting new game from Firaxis, click on the banner below to go to our hub of exclusive coverage.

Categories: Games

F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch | New Gameplay Today

Game Informer News Feed - Mon, 09/06/2021 - 08:00

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Publisher: bilibili Developer: TiGames Release: September 7, 2021 (PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5), TBA (PC) Rating: Everyone 10+ Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, PC

2021 has been filled with a lot of amazing gaming experiences, but the Metroidvania crowd has especially seen a bounty of riches. Games like Axiom Verge 2, Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights, and Grime have been plentiful, and F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch also hopes to follow in the footsteps of gaming greatness. But is developer TiGames' newest indie title a worthy entry into the storied Metroidvania genre or something you can pass on to replay Ori and the Will of the Wisps again?

Join Marcus Stewart, Dan Tack, and Alex Stadnik as they answer that question and give you a tour of F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch on this fresh episode of New Gameplay Today. Our panel pours over the game's satisfying combat, solid story, and interesting world that players should look forward to fighting through. We also discuss root beer at the end (we're on one today).

F.I.S.T. follows Rayton, an anthropomorphic bunny brawler who is tasked with rescuing his friend while fighting his way through the "diesel-punk" world of Torch City. While there's plenty to enjoy from the game's story, the real meat of the experience is in the combat. According to our own Mr. Stewart, the moment-to-moment fights feel satisfying with a bounty of upgrades and new moves to collect as you work your way through the city. While there's not really any revolutionary new mechanics in F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch, the game succeeds in what it sets out to do and provides players with a punchy and engaging Metroidvania experience.

F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch is set for release on September 7 exclusively for PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4, but if you're needing more of a fix before launch, be sure to check out the official Game Informer review and last year's trailer from The Game Awards. For more scorching hot gameplay videos, be sure to head on over to our YouTube page for looks at Far Cry 6, Life is Strange: True Colors, and Marvel's Midnight Suns.

Categories: Games

Life is Strange: True Colors | New Gameplay Today

Game Informer News Feed - Fri, 09/03/2021 - 17:00

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Publisher: Square Enix Developer: Deck Nine Release: September 10, 2021 Rating: Mature Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, Stadia, PC

The Life is Strange franchise is known for its ability to tell thoughtful and emotional stories with a dash of the supernatural, and developer Deck Nine's latest entry in the series looks to continue that tradition.

Join Kimberley Wallace, Alex Van Aken, and Alex Stadnik as they go hands-on with Life is Strange: True Colors and show off some new looks at the game's first chapter.

This time around, our focus shifts to Alex, a girl who has moved from foster home to foster home over the last eight years but is finally getting the chance to move in with her brother Gabe in a seemingly idyllic mountain town in Colorado. Gabe is there to pick Alex up when she arrives, and the two go on a tour of Alex's new home while meeting some of the townsfolk. 

Life is Strange: True Colors is about the relationships you build with the supporting characters, but Alex won't always have the easiest time with that depending on how they're feeling. Our main character can feel what other characters are feeling, which can have physical and mental repercussions for Alex. In a gameplay sense, this also allows the player to know what the NPCs are thinking and influence how they'll handle some of the more critical choice-based segments.

If all that sounds right up your alley and you're excited about Life is Strange: True Colors, you're in luck. Deck Nine's newest title releases on September 10 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, Stadia, and PC!

For more on Life is Strange: True Colors, be sure to check out our own Liana Ruppert's take on why we need more games like the Square Enix-published narrative title and a look at the game's opening scene! Thanks for watching, and let us know what you think of the game in the comments below!

Categories: Games

Who Is The Hunter In Marvel's Midnight Suns?

Game Informer News Feed - Fri, 09/03/2021 - 17:00

Publisher: 2K Games Developer: Firaxis Games Release: 2022 Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC

Marvel's Midnight Suns brings together disparate members of the Marvel Universe into a supernatural adventure. This quest to save the world features Iron Man, Captain America, Captain Marvel, Wolverine, Blade, Doctor Strange, and Ghost Rider, plus a few lesser-known heroes like Magik and Nico Minoru. However, players see this icon-riddled adventure through the eyes of The Hunter, an all-new hero designed by Firaxis in collaboration with Marvel.

Working with Marvel to create a brand new hero was a dream come true for the Firaxis Games team, but they needed to make sure The Hunter could stand up next to the other iconic characters in the Marvel Universe. "There's a specific way that Marvel heroes become heroes, and there's a specific way that Marvel villains become villains," creative director Jake Solomon says. "You can't just wave a wand and say, 'Oh cool. The Hunter exists now.' We had to think about what is the backstory, why do they have meaning in this setting, why would all these characters with all these powers [recruit] them to potentially lead them in this fight? If we make them central, it has to be authentic to this story and why the other heroes would look to The Hunter as an equal."

From Marvel's perspective, there had to be a good narrative reason for introducing this new hero. "Everything of this experience revolves around The Hunter and you playing as The Hunter and the choices you make; that is crucial to authentic Marvel stories," vice president of creative at Marvel Bill Rosemann says. "Every Marvel story has to connect to the main protagonist. You can't take one hero out and put another hero in the story. It shouldn't work. Every story should be very personal to the hero ... In this story, The Hunter is at the center. Everything is connected – all these characters, all of the story is connected back to you, The Hunter."

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The Hunter (who can be male or female) is the child of Lilith, the main antagonist that Hydra awakens at the start of the game. The mystical members of the Midnight Suns band together with Iron Man, Captain Marvel, and Captain America but realize they still need help if they hope to stand a chance against Lilith and her forces. They learn about The Hunter, who defeated Lilith centuries ago before laying to rest. Due to The Hunter's lineage as Lilith's child, they're the only ones powerful enough to stop the Mother of Demons.

The team of heroes travels to the Abbey, an old monastery that exists in a pocket dimension. It's the final haven from Lilith's reach. There, they use their combined magic to awaken The Hunter and recruit them to their team. If you saw the announcement trailer for Marvel's Midnight Suns (above), you saw a cutscene of the awakening ritual. With The Hunter back and caught up on what's happening, the team sets out to halt the dark prophecy once again.

Unfortunately, The Hunter's memory has not survived the centuries of hibernation, so they don't remember exactly how they once stopped Lilith. All they know is they must balance the Light and Dark energy within them and that their connection with Lilith presents the danger of putting The Hunter at odds with the rest of the team of heroes. Despite this innate caution shown by the rest of the heroes, the team puts their trust in The Hunter and sets out to give Lilith and her forces all they've got. 

The Hunter is the first customizable hero in the Marvel Universe. Players choose gender and skin tone, then later equip different gear to complete the desired look. Not only that, but players can also customize the move set and relationships of their Hunter. While in the Abbey, players can wander the halls and interact with the other heroes crashing in the mansion. "In any given day in the Abbey, you're going to run into heroes who want to have a conversation, maybe about something serious, maybe not," Soloman says. "You're going to have the ability to hang out with these heroes. You're going to have the ability to perform quests for these heroes. Hopefully, the Abbey feels like a living space – like your dream of what a superhero headquarters can be."

Just as they must balance their Light and Dark energies, The Hunter can harness these opposing powers in combat. Dialogue and actions around the Abbey contribute to The Hunter's alignment. You can shift your balance to be a Light Hunter, Dark Hunter, or somewhere in between. The Hunter is always a force of good, but a Dark Hunter is more of an antihero, while a Light Hunter is a more virtuous, traditional hero. These shifts are more than cosmetic, as your alignment helps determine which abilities The Hunter has access to. Dark abilities are generally for dealing damage (at the cost of something like your health or your allies' speed). In contrast, Light abilities are generally more about buffing and healing your party, letting you choose if you want your party leader to focus more on offense or defense.

Using the unique battle system developed by Firaxis, players control The Hunter and a party of other heroes to fight the forces of Lilith, including corrupted versions of iconic heroes and villains. In my hands-on time, The Hunter displayed powerful abilities like grabbing enemies with a whip and slamming them into environmental objects or casting a heal to nearby allies. Iron Man and Captain Marvel may be more familiar to the masses, but based on my time with the game, The Hunter is a formidable combatant and a beyond valuable asset to the Midnight Suns.

Marvel's Midnight Suns launches on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC in March. For more on this upcoming strategy-RPG from Firaxis Games, click on the banner below to access our hub of exclusive content, or check out the current issue of Game Informer to read our in-depth cover story!

Categories: Games

Cursed To Golf | New Gameplay Today

Game Informer News Feed - Thu, 09/02/2021 - 20:30

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Publisher: Thunderful Developer: Chuhai Labs Platform: Switch, PC

Chuhai Labs’ Cursed to Golf is making a showing at PAX West this weekend, and we had the chance to head out to the course for a few holes of digital roguelike driving, putting, rocket-balling! The title is headed to Switch and PC next year, and combines turn-based golfing with roguelike elements as you traverse 18 dungeons worth of hazards, traps, and big plays. With some assistance from the mysterious but jovial Scotsman, you must beat the Groundskeeper and bust your way out of Golf Purgatory. On the plus side, you have adorable little ghost animations since you’re dead-ish.

‘Of course, you can always augment your assortment of skills by hitting up the golf shop and selecting some consumable tricks to help you out, like a multiball, extra shots, rocket-controlled shots, time stops, and more! In this episode of New Gameplay Today, we walk you through a few of the basic courses and obstacles you encounter. Is the Switch the new destination for golf-based games that tap into other genres? It sure looks like it! Golf roguelikes, golf rpgs, golf mysteries… Who wants to be the first to make a golf MMORPG? It’s right there for the taking!

On each hole, it’s all about calculating the right club to use, the right power to hit, and the right angle are just the beginning as you start to combine your special abilities to really zip through courses. Trick shots and big plays can keep you alive, banking off special statues that give you extra turns, blowing up dynamite shortcuts, and cleverly angling to get to secret little nooks along each route.

Anyway, Cursed to Golf has a ton of undeniable charm and flavor, and this little taste of it is definitely encouraging. Hopefully, the game rocks and ends up going to other platforms after launch!

Are you into turn-based golf games? Does Cursed to Golf look like something you might enjoy? Let us know in the comments!

Categories: Games

Who Are Marvel's Midnight Suns?

Game Informer News Feed - Thu, 09/02/2021 - 17:00

Publisher: 2K Games Developer: Firaxis Games Release: 2022 Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC

Marvel has a stable of some of the most popular properties in the world. However, the publisher's well is so deep that some of its beloved franchises haven't achieved widespread fame. Developer Firaxis dug deep into its longboxes for inspiration on its upcoming strategy/RPG, Marvel's Midnight Suns. Who is this enigmatic group, and what makes them the perfect centerpiece for a supernatural epic? We spoke with Marvel and Firaxis to get the answers. Here is everything you need to know about the team of Marvel's Midnight Suns.

The Midnight Sons Comic History

Monsters and horror have a long history in the comic book world. In fact, horror comics are as old as superhero comics, but the genre's popularity has waxed and waned over the years.

"In the ‘70s is when the Comics Code restrictions eased up a bit," says Marvel Games' VP and head of creative Bill Rosemann. "Before that, comic producers were very limited in showing vampires and werewolves and things like that. In the '70s, things loosened up, and Marvel put their own stamp on the supernatural. They brought back classic monsters like Dracula and werewolves, but they made them distinctly Marvel … and of course it was a hit. Things ebb and flow, [monster comics] kind of went away in the '80s, and they came roaring back in the '90s with reworked versions of Blade and Ghost Rider. Then Marvel decided, 'Hey, what if we made a team out of all these characters?' And thus was born the Midnight Sons."

In the late summer of 1992, Marvel debuted "Rise of the Midnight Sons,” an epic crossover event that brought together Blade, Ghost Rider, Doctor Strange, and several of Marvel's other supernatural-themed heroes. In this story, the heroes worked to stop a sorceress named Lilith, the Mother of Demons, from opening a dimensional rift and conquering the world.

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Firaxis is taking that kernel of an idea and updating it for a modern audience. One of the ways the studio is modernizing the property is by renaming the group Midnight Suns to be more inclusive. In Firaxis' fiction, the Midnight Suns are a group of supernatural-themed heroes named after a celestial event also called the Midnight Sun. Lilith hopes to take advantage of this rare astronomical phenomenon and resurrect an elder god named Chthon that could devour our planet.

"I suppose there's no way to do it without making it more modern," says creative director Jake Solomon. "But we're still really inspired by that original cool look. When we first thought about our group of Midnight Suns – for us, the original Midnight Suns is Nico and Magik and Ghost Rider and Blade – we always thought about them as like a punk superhero team. They are a very outsider superhero team. We always talked about them as the people hanging outside of [famed punk rock club] CBGBs in New York, and they just look like punks, but they're actually these amazing superheroes. They'd be the ones smoking the cigarettes in an alley, and they'd see a skeleton walk by, and they're like, 'That's our job. We're gonna go take that thing out.' These are very cool, kind of under-the-radar heroes."

Who Else Is On The Team?

Blade, Ghost Rider, Magik, and Nico comprise the core Midnight Suns team, and they are a formidable bunch, but they'll need all the help they can get to have any hope of taking down Lilith. As a result, Firaxis worked closely with Marvel to create a brand new hero called the Hunter, who can manipulate light and dark energies to devastating effect. (Stay tuned in the coming days for deeper dives on both Lilith and the Hunter.)

And, if those weren't enough heroes to play with, several of Marvel's more-renowned champions are joining the Midnight Suns in their fight against Lilith. We don't know the complete character list for the game, but Firaxis confirmed that iconic heroes such as Wolverine, Iron Man, Captain America, Captain Marvel, and Doctor Strange are all playable.

For more on Marvel's Midnight Suns, be sure to check out our content hub throughout the month for exclusive interviews with the team, hands-on impressions, and a Rapid-Fire interview with creative director Jake Solomon by clicking on the banner below.

Categories: Games

How To Unlock Aloy In Genshin Impact

Game Informer News Feed - Thu, 09/02/2021 - 14:02

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Publisher: miHoYo Developer: miHoYo Release: September 28, 2020 (PlayStation 4, PC, iOS, Android), April 28, 2021 (PlayStation 5) Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, PC, iOS, Android

Horizon: Zero Dawn's Aloy is now a part of Genshin Impact. She was added to the game yesterday and is free to all players on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.

To add her to your party, you first need to raise your Adventure rank to 20. Once you do this, open the email you have tethered to your Genshin Impact account, and you'll be able to claim Aloy and her predator bow. After rebooting the game on PlayStation 4 or 5, she'll be waiting for you on the character select screen. If you are NOT Adventure rank 20, Aloy will be added to the PlayStation 4 and 5 versions for lower rank players on October 12 as a part of Genshin Impact's 2.2 update.

For those of you playing Genshin Impact on PC or mobile, Aloy will eventually make her way to these devices. That will happen on November 23 with the 2.3 update. Until that day she will remain a PlayStation exclusive. However, your PlayStation saves carry over to other devices, so if you unlock her on your PlayStation 5, you can continue your journey with her on mobile or PC.

When Aloy is in your party, animals that produce raw, fowl, or chilled meat will not be startled by your movements. Her bow is as lethal as you would hope, and can be fired quickly at any range. You can also hold a shot longer for precision, which is great for sniping opportunities. Bringing in an element of the Frozen Wilds she once roamed, her arrows can be equipped with frost damage, and she can throw freeze bombs that explode on impact. Both of these attacks deal cryo damage.

What do you think about Aloy joining Genshin Impact's ranks? Are you still playing this game? Let us know in the comments below!

Categories: Games

Far Cry 6 | New Gameplay Today

Game Informer News Feed - Wed, 09/01/2021 - 00:09

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Publisher: Ubisoft Developer: Ubisoft Toronto Release: October 7, 2021 Rating: Mature Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Stadia, PC, Mac

The Far Cry 6 release date is just around the corner, and we were lucky enough to go hands-on with the upcoming first-person shooter and saw many of the gameplay opportunities that the Island of Yara offers. With its antagonist being played by the famous Giancarlo Esposito, many fans are hopeful that this entry in the Far Cry series will return to form by featuring an unforgettable performance by the game's villain. Join Alex Stadnik, Brian Shea, and our wonderful production director, Margaret Andrews, for another episode of New Gameplay Today, wherein the trio shows off brand new Far Cry 6 gameplay!

Senior editor Brian Shea summarizes his time spent playing Far Cry 6 in his recent preview, saying:

Far Cry 6 starts with a bang from both narrative and action standpoints. I’m curious if Ubisoft can carry forward with these emotional gut-punches without falling victim to the cognitive dissonance for which Far Cry is often known. Hopefully, the enjoyment we get from flying around in our wingsuits, firing over-the-top weapons, and fighting alongside a cute wiener dog named Chorizo doesn’t contrast too harshly with the story of an island in political peril. Only time will tell if Ubisoft can balance these disparate tones, but in my time playing, I had a blast and still felt the weight of the dark narrative beats.

Did you enjoy this early look at Far Cry 6? If so, subscribe to the Game Informer YouTube channel so that you don't miss our full Far Cry 6 review when the game launches this October! If you're interested in seeing the latest footage of upcoming games, be sure to check out other episodes of New Gameplay Today here. As always, leave a comment down below, letting us know if you're excited to play the latest entry in the Far Cry series.

Categories: Games

Exclusive Shin Megami Tensei V Screenshots Give Us More Glimpses Of The Demons And Characters

Game Informer News Feed - Tue, 08/31/2021 - 23:21

Publisher: Sega Developer: Atlus Release: November 12, 2021 Platform: Switch

Since the game's big release date announcement this past JuneGame Informer has been rolling out exclusive previews of Shin Megami Tensei V. The newest entry of the captivating role-playing series has lots to be excited about, so we've been working with the team at Atlus to show off different parts of the game as we get closer and closer to launch. From new looks at the main characters to a primer of the story of the game, we've had you covered in recent months.

Our most recent look at Shin Megami Tensei V focused on the demons and negotiations that take place between them and the main characters. Atlus has passed along even more localized screenshots for this prominent aspect of the game. You can check out the gallery below to see these new, exclusive screenshots.

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On top of that, Atlus sent over some new character art for some of these demons that you'll be fighting, fusing, interacting with, and potentially recruiting to fight alongside you. The game features more than 200 demons across the adventure, featuring classics like Jack Frost, as well as several new creatures designed by Masayuki Doi, who has been with the series since Persona 2: Innocent Sin. You can see the new demon art below.

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Shin Megami Tensei V launches November 12 on Switch. For tons more on the upcoming Atlus RPG, check out our Shin Megami Tensei V hub here. As always, keep your eyes on our site for more info about Shin Megami Tensei V in the lead up to launch.

What is your hype level for Shin Megami Tensei V? Where are you hoping the story goes? What kinds of demons are you looking to recruit or fuse? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

Categories: Games

Far Cry 6 Preview – Stoking The Flames

Game Informer News Feed - Tue, 08/31/2021 - 17:00

Publisher: Ubisoft Developer: Ubisoft Toronto Release: October 7, 2021 Rating: Mature Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Stadia, PC, Mac

Ever since its announcement last summer, Far Cry 6 has been one of the most highly anticipated games on the horizon. With a revolution against a murderous dictator on the fictional Caribbean Island of Yara serving as the backdrop, the stakes are high in this latest entry. While everything has looked promising to this point, I was excited to finally get my hands on the new game to see for myself how it’s turning out.

The opening moments of Far Cry 6 feature celebratory tones, but they don’t last long. You play Dani Rojas (who can be male or female), a former soldier looking towards a better life. You’re on the roof of your home having a drink with your friends Alejo and Lita, excited to leave Yara behind. The plan is drinks in Mexico, then dinner in Miami. A commotion on the ground draws your attention as soldiers in President Antón Castillo’s army start shooting civilians. Lita pleads with Alejo not to draw attention, but his hatred for Castillo is too much; he throws his beer at the soldiers, yelling, “F--- Castillo!” Unfortunately, the soldiers spot him and put a bullet in his head. 

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All hell breaks loose as Lita and Dani make a break for it, evading soldiers and racing to the docks. They board a fishing vessel, but the sense of relief is short-lived as the boat suddenly stops and Castillo walks down the steps. Actor Giancarlo Esposito of Breaking Bad and The Mandalorian fame plays Castillo. From this scene, he appears to one-up the already sterling roster of menacing antagonists from Far Cry’s history. 

After his bodyguard murders one of the refugees who yells in Castillo’s face, the President turns his attention to a small, hooded child in the back, who turns out to be his son, Diego. Diego was also attempting to escape, and he pleads with his father to let the others go. Castillo doesn’t listen. He whisks his son away, and his forces open fire on the ship. 

Dani awakens on Isla Santuario next to Lita, who is bleeding out on the beach. She hangs on long enough to pass Dani her phone with information on finding rebels on the island. In an emotional moment, Lita dies, and Dani grabs her machete and embarks on the journey to escape from Yara.

Dani soon seeks out the camp in Lita’s phone and finds Clara, the leader of the resistance group Libertad. Dani asks for help getting out, but Clara runs down Libertad’s mission, convincing Dani to stay and fight. Dani’s first mission is to track down a former double agent named Juan Cortez. 

Juan is known for his love of booze but also his resourcefulness and eccentricity. Naturally, I find him at the bar in a small, beachside town. Castillo’s FND military forces are also looking for him, and it turns out the barman sold him out. After Juan pays the bartender back for that favor, he and his pet alligator, Guapo, jump into action, fighting off the soldiers alongside Dani. Guapo likes Dani and becomes the first Amigo – animal companions that fight alongside you – that you add to your roster.

Before heading back to camp, Juan says he wants to make a stop at a recent FND supply drop. Along with Guapo, I take out the soldiers and scavenge the supplies. Once back at camp, I use those supplies to craft two special bullet types for enemies with and without armor, respectively. 

Juan then tells me my next mission: Steal uranium from one of Castillo’s forts. On my way there, I encounter a checkpoint that blocks traffic with a spike strip. I decide to take out the soldiers and destroy the FND billboard to claim the checkpoint as my own, which posts guerrilla fighters there instead of Castillo’s forces. Shortly after, I arrive at my destination. 

The fort is full of guards, but I notice multiple ways to approach the situation after scoping it out from a nearby viewpoint. Do I equip my armor-piercing rounds and go in guns blazing? Or do I take a sneakier route to make my approach easier? I see vines on the exterior that I could climb, and there is a way to swim under the fort and enter through the cellar. I could also go to the substation on the cliffside and zipline into the window. I decide to scale the vines and take out the patrolling soldiers one by one. After killing the officer, retrieving the key, and finding the uranium, I head back to Juan at Clara’s camp.

Once back, Juan hands me my first Supremo – an ultimate weapon that operates on a cooldown. The Exterminador is a multi-rocket launcher that locks onto enemies and wipes them from existence; it’s the definition of “overkill” against foot soldiers but is also effective against tanks. Other Supremos you unlock include the Volta, an EMP pulse that knocks enemies over, disables security systems, and hijacks vehicles, and the Médico, which lets you self-revive and heal allies. My personal favorite is El Muro, a revolver with a ton of stopping power that you use with a handheld shield.

After blowing up two of Castillo’s ships and escaping Isla Santuario, I land on El Este, where I meet a whole new cast of characters, fight alongside different resistance groups, and open a ton of new missions. Yara seems vast in its explorable area, and I can’t wait to dig into the final product. 

Far Cry 6 starts with a bang from both narrative and action standpoints. I’m curious if Ubisoft can carry forward with these emotional gut-punches without falling victim to the cognitive dissonance for which Far Cry is often known. Hopefully, the enjoyment we get from flying around in our wingsuits, firing over-the-top weapons, and fighting alongside a cute wiener dog named Chorizo doesn’t contrast too harshly with the story of an island in political peril. Only time will tell if Ubisoft can balance these disparate tones, but in my time playing, I had a blast and still felt the weight of the dark narrative beats.

Far Cry 6 comes to PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Stadia, Luna, and PC on October 7.

Categories: Games

The Big Con Is An Easy Mark Worth Scoping Out

Game Informer News Feed - Tue, 08/31/2021 - 16:02

Publisher: Skybound Developer: Mighty Yell Release: August 31, 2021 Rating: Teen Platform: Xbox One, PC

The Big Con transports players back to the ‘90s when video rental stores dotted the land, tacky bright colors were in like Flynn, and you could unironically describe something as “radical” and be considered, well, pretty rad. The game launches today, and I've found the game's first few chapters to be as enjoyable as drawing that cool "S" symbol over and over again. That's a compliment in case you're a young 'un. That thing is weirdly entertaining to make. 

The game stars Ali, a mischievous though good-hearted teenager who discovers her mom’s video store (which also serves as their home) is in danger of being foreclosed by dubious loan sharks. Saving the store requires repayment to the tune of $97,000. Despite her mother’s resistance, Ali wants to help, and she secretly partners up with Ted, a well-dressed teen and master con artist, who shows her the ins and outs of stealing. That's right; you'll need to con your way to enough money to buy a fancy new car. She’s also got Rad Ghost, a humourous apparition that is the walking distillation of early ‘90s attitude who serves as your hint giver and moral support.  

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Under the guise of attending band camp, Ali and Ted embark on a cross-country road trip to hunt for increasingly bigger scores. Every stop along the way, whether it be shopping malls or a busy train, serves as a self-contained level, and the goal is to accumulate a certain amount of cash before moving on. As you freely roam around areas, you'll gather items and converse with folks to find out what makes them tick and, most of all, the things they're willing to open their wallets for. 

I'm spending most of my time pickpocketing friends, frenemies, and plenty of colorful strangers. It’s the most basic form of stealing and can be performed on just about anyone. Doing so involves sneaking behind targets and winning a simple mini-game of stopping a moving cursor inside of the colored section of a bar. The harder the pickpocket, the faster the needle, and the more narrow the safe zone is. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll earn more money from tougher robberies. I'm scoring close to $100 or more from easier targets after initially getting single-digit amounts.  Pickpocketing isn't the hardest thing in the world, provided you possess decent reflexes, but it does capture the tense timing of nabbing what isn't yours without detection. Not that I would know anything about that, of course. 

So far, there doesn’t seem to be any apparent moral consequence to flexing those sticky fingers. I kind of hope that remains true because I’ve had no quarrel with stealing a child’s favorite baseball card to sell to a desperate collector or robbing a mother while she strolled peacefully with her newborn. Failing the pickpocket game does get you caught, however, though it only means you can’t attempt to rob them again without wearing a disguise. Paper bags, clown noses, Groucho Marx glasses, and other silly outfits can be found while exploring and allow you to frisk targets who are on to you. You can only get caught three times in total, though, so don’t be afraid to move onto someone else if a target is too tricky to fleece. 

You can make decent money digging through pockets, but the bigger scores come by eavesdropping on folks to learn about their wants and needs, then capitalizing on them. I encountered a desperate father looking to buy a sold-out doll for his whiny daughter and a stock trader willing to pay anything for a hot market tip. Getting what you need generally hasn’t been difficult as long as I explored thoroughly and talked to everyone. To help the stock guy, I feigned interest to a financial expert who was more than happy to regale me with a humorously long diatribe about current market trends. Regurgitating that lecture to the needy gentlemen netted $1000 for the tip. 

The puzzle design has yet to challenge me, and I think I’m okay with that for now. The Big Con has design trappings reminiscent of point-and-click games of old, but I haven’t had to combine items or manually present them in the sometimes annoying “is this what you’re looking for?” kind of way. If you have what someone needs, the game clearly surfaces it through dialogue. This takes away a lot of the frustrating guesswork and obtuse dot-connecting that the genre can be notorious for and allows me to enjoy the goofy writing and weird situations. 

You’ll also pick up random junk in addition to costumes and quest items. Nothing goes to waste in The Big Con, though, thanks to an eccentric collector who tasks you with finding items that match certain themes. For example, he'll want things that remind him of corn or cows. He’ll pay for each correct item, and he’ll also buy all of your remaining junk once you’re ready to move on to the next area. It's a nifty way to make some extra cash, providing further incentive to poke around your surroundings. 

So far, The Big Con has been a charming homage to a decade near and dear to millennials such as myself. It's been a smooth game to sail through since the mechanics and puzzles aren’t the deepest in the world, and while that could be taken as a knock, I’d rather something be simple and make sense than be overly convoluted. That could change as I explore deeper, of course, but for now I'm having a good time soaking in the vibrant presentation and catchy soundtrack. I’m also growing more and more curious if Ali’s altruistic crime spree pays off. Can she rescue the video store? Will she face any consequences whatsoever for her actions? Seriously, what’s really going on with Rad Ghost? You can answer those questions and more right now by picking up The Big Con on Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, and PC.

Categories: Games

The Big Con Review -- Oceans '97

Gamespot News Feed - Tue, 08/31/2021 - 16:00

The Big Con is a nostalgic throwback to the 1990s that does not attempt to replicate the defining look or play of '90s games. This is a thoroughly modern adventure game, with an isometric look, hand-drawn graphics, and a resolute refusal to mine references from LucasArts point-and-clicks. The Big Con takes its cues not from what we were playing in the '90s but what we were watching.

The debut game from developer Mighty Yell reminds me a little bit of Night in the Woods, but if, instead of talking animals, Night in the Woods had starred '90s teens rendered in the Nickelodeon's Doug art style, complete with the primary and secondary color skin tones that lended characters like Mr. Dink, Skeeter Valentine, and Roger Klotz their memorable designs. In this NickToons-inspired look, and in the decade-specific trappings of its narrative, The Big Con builds a setting that feels both true to the era, and heavily influenced by the art that era produced. In translating its inspirations, though, the game brings with it a sense that you have seen this all before. It’s derivative, but going through the motions of this familiar story is still, at times, a lot of fun.

Our heroine, Ali, is a teen who works in a video rental store owned by her mother, Linda. As the story begins, we learn Linda is in deep financial trouble--to the tune of $97,000 and some change--with some very bad people. Despite Linda repeatedly telling her not to concern herself with the finances, Ali is committed to raising the money and saving the store. But coming up with close to a hundred grand the legit way proves challenging. Luckily for Ali, there's a new kid, Ted, passing through town who's happy to teach her how to pickpocket. When Ali proves to have a knack for it, Ted dangles a new possibility in front of her: Travel to Las Venganza--The Big Con's version of Sin City--and pull off one con job big enough to pay off most of the debt. They'll pick up the rest by nabbing wallets along the way.

Continue Reading at GameSpot
Categories: Games

All Of The Known Dinosaurs In Jurassic World Evolution 2

Game Informer News Feed - Mon, 08/30/2021 - 23:14

Publisher: Frontier Developments Developer: Frontier Developments Release: November 9, 2021 Rating: Teen Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

"Life finds a way." With dinosaurs on the loose in the United States, Jurassic World Evolution 2 fully embraces Ian Malcolm's famous warning. We're going to learn what life is like living among these thunder lizards.

Frontier Developments says players will encounter over 75 dinosaurs species within this sequel. We likely won't learn exactly which dinosaurs are included prior to the game's November 9 launch, but Frontier is trickling out videos that highlight some the new additions and returning favorites.

With an expanded focus on marine and flying reptiles, there should be a diverse amount of creatures to study and perhaps contain within your theme parks. The wider variety also means more ways that guests can be devoured. We all want to know if a flying dinosaur can feed the Mosasaurus by dropping a guest into the lagoon.

The list below rounds up all of the known dinosaurs that will be in Jurassic World Evolution 2. We're currently sitting at just under half of what we can expect to see in the game. Odds are some of the hybrids like the Indominus Rex will return, and will likely be joined by other Frankensteined monstrosities. We also don't know if Frontier is adding dinosaurs from the ongoing Camp Cretaceous Netflix show. Bumpy would surely be a draw for parks.

We'll update this list whenever new dinosaurs are announced or discovered and will also provide a full list upon the game's release. Here are the known dinos:

  • Acrocanthosaurus – Carnivore
  • Albertosaurus – Carnivore
  • Allosaurus – Carnivore
  • Amargasaurus – Herbivore

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  • Ankylosaurus – Herbivore
  • Attenborosaurus – Piscivore (Marine) *Deluxe Edition Only
  • Baryonyx – Piscivore
  • Brachiosaurus – Herbivore

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  • Camasaurus – Herbivore
  • Carnotaurus – Carnivore
  • Chasmosaurus – Herbivore
  • Coelophysis – Carnivore

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  • Corythosaurus – Herbivore
  • Dimorphodon – Piscivore (Flying)

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  • Diplodocus – Herbivore
  • Dracorex – Herbivore
  • Dryosaurus – Herbivore
  • Gallimimus – Herbivore
  • Geosternbergia – Piscivore (Flying) *Deluxe Edition Only
  • Homalocephale – Herbivore
  • Huayangosaurus – Herbivore *Deluxe Edition Only
  • Kentrosaurus – Herbivore
  • Megalosaurus – Carnivore *Deluxe Edition Only
  • Mosasaurus – Piscivore (Marine)

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  • Nasutoceratops – Herbivore
  • Pachycephalosaurus – Herbivore
  • Pachyrhinosaurus – Herbivore *Deluxe Edition Only
  • Parasaurolophus – Herbivore
  • Pteranodon – Piscivore (Flying)

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  • Qianzhousaurus – Carnivore

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  • Stegosaurus – Herbivore

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  • Struthiomimus – Herbivore
  • Torosaurus – Herbivore
  • Triceratops – Herbivore

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  • Tyrannosaurus Rex – Carnivore
  • Velociraptor – Carnivore
Categories: Games

Everything We Know About Deathloop

Game Informer News Feed - Mon, 08/30/2021 - 21:41

Publisher: Bethesda Softworks Developer: Arkane Studios Release: September 14, 2021 Platform: PlayStation 5, PC

We have been following the news about Deathloop closely since it was revealed at the Bethesda 2019 E3 conference, even featuring it on the cover of one of our issues. A lot has happened in the two years since its announcement, including a deal that brought Bethesda-owned studios under Microsoft’s umbrella, which made everyone question whether the title would continue as a PlayStation 5 console-exclusive.

As far as the game’s journey, it seems that Deathloop’s development was a case of life imitating art. The game went through a cycle of getting delayed, showing off details in a Sony showcase, getting delayed, and showing off more details in Sony's State of Play. But it looks like the loop is about to break since the stylish first-person shooter has gone gold and is just around the corner. To make sure you have all the info you need on release day, here’s everything we know about Deathloop:

Who Is Making It?

Arkane Studios is handling the game’s development, specifically its team based in Lyon, France. The studio is best known for the Dishonored series and Prey, and it is bringing a lot of those games’ DNA into Deathloop, a new IP for the team. The game’s director Dinga Bakaba is a long-time Arkane veteran and previously directed Dishonored 2 and Wolfenstein: Youngblood.

Who Am I Playing?

You’ll slip into the ‘60s-inspired leather jacket of Colt Vahn, an assassin who finds himself trapped in two senses. He is stranded on Blackreef Island, a spit of land in the middle of the ocean teeming with deadly enemies, but he is also ensnared in a never-ending, 24-hour period. To escape both, Colt must cross off every name on his hit list before time resets his progress.

If I’m An Assassin, Who Are My Targets?

Scattered across the island are eight individuals, called the Visionaries, who hold the key to breaking through Colt’s nightmare imprisonment. Here’s the list: Egor Serling, Aleksis Dorsey, Frank Spicer, Charlie Montague, Harriet Morse, Fia Zborowska, Dr. Wenjie Evans, and Julianna Blake. Each of these people helped the AEON Program successfully loop time in pursuit of eternal life. They are the pillars that hold up the life-prolonging project, and while even one remains alive, it will continue. From swanky clubs to scientific facilities, Colt must track down every person in this group, study their routines, and take them out before his time is up to break the maddening cycle. But be warned, if you don’t get them all, you’ll have to start all over the next day, and there is only one solution to Arkane’s “murder puzzle.”

Egor and Aleksis were two of the first targets Arkane revealed. As the founder of AEON, Egor Serling is a scientifically minded individual who enjoys solitude while wanting to be the life of the party. On the other end of the spectrum, Aleksis Dorsey thinks of himself as the leader of his pack, something he communicates through his signature wolf mask. We later got a glimpse at Frank Spicer, the group’s muscle and aspiring rockstar. Julianna Blake is a unique member of the Visionaries. Not only does she recognize she is in a time loop, unlike everyone else whose memory resets each time, but she’s also actively hunting you down to stop you from ending it. The other four targets are still a mystery, but you’ll have plenty of time to figure them out during your time in the loop.

How does The Time Loop Work?

As the name suggests, Deathloop’s deadly gameplay takes place in a repeating 24-hour cycle of time. Each day is split into Morning, Noon, Afternoon, and Night. If Night comes to an end and you still have targets on your list, or you die, you’ll wake up back at Morning again. Luckily, you’ll retain all the information you gathered during your last loop and, with an unlockable rare item called Residuum, you even get to hold on to some of your gear and abilities between loops.

Dying does not always mean starting over again, however. Early in the game, players pick up the Reprise ability. Reprise lets you turn back time to before your death, giving you a chance to right your deadly mistakes before you make them. This is especially valuable because you can’t quick save your game in Deathloop. However, you only get two Reprises per day, and you need to retrace your steps to recover some of your most valuable items after triggering it. If you want more than two take-backsies in one loop, set your sights on Julianna because killing her refreshes the ability.

Blackreef Island

Within the black-sand beaches of your prison are four distinct districts, each with their own unique flavor. You are free to explore any of them in whatever order you’d like, but you can only investigate a single location during any one time period, so choose carefully. It is possible your target won’t be available at the time you decide to infiltrate their liar, but once you discover this, you can avoid that time and place combo the future.

For all the other island inhabitants, Blackreef is a never-ending party that you are trying to crash. This means every single person you meet in the game will be antagonistic and try to kill you. While the world around you may be utterly hostile, it at least has a groovy vibe. Everything from the game’s locations to its characters has an eye-catching 1960’s aesthetic design.

What Are The Tools Of The Trade?

Despite waking up on a beach with no idea what’s going on, Colt gains access to a surprisingly large assortment of gear throughout his adventure. Weapons, of course, are some of the most important. For silent kills, you can go with the over-the-top nail gun called the PT-6 Spiker, or the tried-and-true Machete. If you want to go in guns blazing, you’ve got the Rapier, a sniper’s dream shotgun, the Strelak 50-50 assault rifle, the heritage gun that looks like it should be out on the open plains, and many more. To make these weapons, and yourself, even deadlier, you can equip tiny metal Trinkets found throughout the world that grant boosts and alter gun properties.

Guns aren’t the only trick up your sleeve. Deathloop also boasts some powerful abilities, like Reprise, which you can collect by picking up the right Slab. These Slabs grant unique powers in the game, including Karnesis, which lets you throw objects and people around with ease. Many Arkane fans will recognize the Shift ability as it bears a striking resemblance to a similar power, called Blink, in Dishonored. You can also upgrade each ability to enhance its effect. Slabs are scarce, but you can sometimes find them on Visionaries you have killed.

Is There A Multiplayer?

Yes, the game has a limited online PvP aspect that works like a Dark Souls invasion. Other players can enter your world as Julianna Blake and try to murder you. You’ll always know when this happens because your loquacious rival announces her arrival over the radio. The person playing as Julianna only gets one life in a day, but another player could inhabit the lethal sniper later, so you’re never entirely safe. Knowing that some players might find this feature unappealing, Arkane made it possible to restrict challengers to your friend list or opt-out entirely.

When Is The Game Coming Out?

Deathloop releases on September 14 for PlayStation 5 and PC.

Categories: Games

Destiny 2 Beginner's Guide For New And Returning Players | Season Of The Lost

Game Informer News Feed - Sat, 08/28/2021 - 00:18

Click to watch embedded media

Publisher: Bungie Developer: Bungie Release: November 10, 2020 (PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Stadia, PC), December 8, 2020 (PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S) Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Stadia, PC

As a long-time Destiny 2 fan, it's a fantastic sight to see so many returning players and newcomers join the fray thanks to Season of the Lost and the upcoming Witch Queen expansion. While Destiny has always had a story, it truly feels like the Forsaken DLC kicked off a new wave of inspiration from the team. The studio over at Bungie continued that flow with Shadowkeep and the current expansion, Beyond Light. From there, the seasonal content hit a crescendo that is nothing short of inspiring, especially so with Season of the Chosen and Splicer.

With Season of the Lost bringing back a beloved character from the first game, many veteran Destiny players are returning after long hiatuses. That, and newcomers are finally checking out what the space shooter has in store. That being said, the Destiny 2 available today is almost nothing like it was at launch, and that can be very intimidating when looking at all of the different content. Where should you start? What should you skip? What should be your focus? Well, Guardian, strap in, because here's your Destiny 2 Beginner's Guide for new and returning players before diving into what Season of the Lost has in store. 

Should I pay for the expansions or try free-to-play first? 

Free is always good but in this case? Paid is way, way better. If you're looking for story, the expansions are the way to go. Forsaken, Shadowkeep, and Beyond Light are the current expansions you can dive into, with the first being a true pivot for the Destiny 2 experience. When the game first launched, it was rough, which we talked about here, but Forsaken truly acted as a catalyst for positive change. Then Shadowkeep came and took the story into an even darker place with the current expansion, Beyond Light, shattering us in ways (sometimes literally) that are both painful and beautiful. Purchasing the expansions is also a great way to get better gear because it's assumed that you've played the game before now while also granting access to higher-tier content such as Raids. 

The free version isn't a bad start if you are on the fence about whether or not the style of gameplay is right for you. You can play PvP events like Crucible, PvPvE events like Gambit, and enjoy additional content such as Strikes. You can also enjoy the Vault of Glass raid, the only raid that is free for everyone that has returned from its Destiny 1 glory. Expansion-specific Exotic quests are also limited to paid players. What you will also be missing out on is some of the best storytelling in Destiny history, as well as the seasonal content that adds gut-wrenching lore and tales of inspiring feats. 

Recommendation: The Red War is the base storyline for the game and that has since been vaulted (not everything vaulted will stay vaulted) to make room for new content. However, this part of the story bridges the gap between where we are at now, especially so with the previous Season of the Chosen, and the very start of the sequel. Osiris and Warmind are also unavailable, though both of these expansions were regarded as lackluster overall, especially when compared to the story today. That being said, parts of those narratives are key to the current Savathun storyline, so I recommend this channel here for the best lore backstory you can find online. My Name Is Byf does a wonderful job at compiling the lore in a way that feels natural and engaging, this is a great place to catch up on what is no longer available.  Classes and Subclasses

There are three classes to choose from, I recommend running one of each to level faster and to experience the wildly different ways each one approaches combat:

  • Hunter - Perfect for rogue lovers
  • Titan - Perfect for tank lovers
  • Warlock - Perfect for magic lovers
    • Think of Warlocks as a Support character due to healing rift abilities and its Well of Radiance Super 

Each class has four subclasses to master, individually unlocked: 

  • Solar
  • Arc
  • Void
  • Stasis 
    • This can only be unlocked if you have Beyond Light

Each subclass has three skill trees to unlock, which are different from class to class. Play around for different trees depending on the instance. For example, when I run raids as a Warlock, I'll typically either go top-tree void or Solar for Well of Radiance to keep my fireteam alive. Or, if I want to do massive damage with my Titan, I will go Thundercrash using the Arc subclass. Paired with a unique Exotic chest piece, that damage is increased even more, making this a powerhouse addition to any fire team. Hunters also have a unique Tether ability which is great for clearing large groups of enemies at one time. 

Where should I start?

It's easy to feel overwhelmed at first, whether you are completely green or a returning player. When dropping into Destiny 2 for the first time, New Light starts you with doing the introduction mission on the Cosmodrome. This is a tutorial segment of the game that shows you the basic ropes, such as Supers, basic combat, weapon types, and varying NPC roles. When you are there, you will be directed to your first NPC that will dole out what are called Bounties. These are specific tasks that give instructions on what players will need to do in order to complete them. They are great for getting XP to level while also earning Pinnacles and Powerfuls, which is something we'll go into more detail about in the Gear section. 

When running around to get your first ship, it can be a little disorienting because a new player isn't going to be super familiar with how Destiny works quite yet, which can be a tad overwhelming. Pay attention to what the NPCs that have a marker over them tell you, grab bounties, and then pay attention to your Quest log to track which action items you want to do first. This will get more complicated as you go on, but the start of your journey will focus on catching you up on everything to do in-game. Once the New Light campaign is complete, you'll then head to the Tower where there will be quest markers for key characters: 

  • Shaxx - Crucible, PvP
  • Banshee - Weapon bounties, consumables, purchasable items with Glimmer (in-game material used as currency), Legendary Shards, etc
  • Drifter - Gambit bounties 
  • Zavala - Titan vanguard for Strike bounties, Strikes in a playlist can be found in the Destinations tab on your menu alongside Gambit and Crucible
  • Ikora Rey - Warlock vanguard 
  • ADA-1 - Armor Synthesis agent for transmogrification, offers unique bounties for materials needed to make cosmetic changes

Eventually, there will be an extension to the Tower called the H.E.L.M, but you don't need to worry about that until you reach Beyond Light content and continue on with Season of the Chosen and everything after that point. 

Bounties are side missions from Vendors.

Unlocking worlds will be key when first starting out, and this can be a pain in the butt because it depends on your Power Level. New areas will also unlock as you go into each expansion, opening up new content like Strikes and Season-specific activities. Which brings us to our next point: what is a Power Level? 

What is a Power Level?

Power Levels is the current level of your character, an average of the gear levels you have equipped both with armor and weapons. Power Levels are key in knowing which content you should tackle and what you should hold off on. If you dive into an activity that recommends a 1300 Power Level at 1240, you're going to get crushed and that could ruin your Destiny experience. 

You'll also deal with what's called an Artifact, which was introduced in Year 2. Artifacts will be key when leveling up, offering up a boost in your Power level from your Base level (pre-Artifact) while also unlocking powerful mods for your gear. The quickest way to level up your PL is to run three characters of each class and do all of your Pinnacle and Powerful bounties (marked by a gold symbol in your Destination and Map tabs. Hover over where the symbol is marked to see what you need to do, depending on the activity). Pinnacles and Powerfuls will increase your Power Level if you aren't at that season's cap yet through completion, dropping weapons and gear at a higher PL. 

For Season of the Lost, there are three different caps to keep in mind: 

  • Base Gear Level - 1100 Power Level
  • Legendary Gear Cap - 1270 Power Level
  • Powerful Gear Cap - 1320 Power Level
  • Pinnacle Gear Cap - 1330 Power Level

With Artifact, your level can go past 1330 by doing more difficult content. This includes things like Raids, Grandmaster Nightfalls (a specific type of Nightfall strike at the hardest difficulty), Master and Legendary Lost Sectors (don't worry about this when just starting out, you will get a bounty that will show you where and why these are good instances to tackle). 

At the end of each season, there is a new Artifact introduced, which means you'll see your PL reset to a lower level. 

Gear and how to approach earning it

Good sources for Legendary gear: 

  • Blue and Purple drops from enemies
  • Decrypting engrams, which are world drops and rewards for bounties
  • Clan bounties
    • Join a clan! There is an XP boost, and you'll ensure you always have a fire team for those matchmaking activities versus going with randoms you don't know. 
  • Older raids
  • Nightfall playlists
  • Dungeons 
    • Highly recommend Pit of Heresy and The Shattered Throne
  • Activities
    • Lost Sectors, Strikes, Public Events, Crucible

For Powerful gear: 

  • Exotic quest rewards, which are limited
  • Trials of Osiris, which is hardcore PvP and I recommend avoiding this as a new player
  • Completing eight bounties from vendors that offer Powerfuls, you'll see this when you hover over the vendors marked with the gold symbol mentioned previously 
  • Europa's Weekly Exo Challenge
  • Season Pass
  • Prime Engrams (Visit Cryptarch in the Tower to decrypt them)
  • Exotic Engrams
  • Crucible, Gambit, and Nightfalls
Focus on the eight bounties from vendors first, that's the quickest and easiest way to achieve those drops if you're limited on time.

For Pinnacle gear (once you've reached the Powerful cap): 

  • Weekly playlists
    • Crucible, Strikes, Gambit
  • Clan XP
  • Exotic quest completion like Presage from Season of the Chosen
  • Trials of Osiris (7 wins)
  • Nightfall: The Ordeal (100,000 points or more)
  • Iron Banner
    • A Crucible playlist that rotates in and out of the game 
  • Seasonal Activity reward
  • Newest raid runs, Vault of Glass 
  • Newest Dungeon, Prophecy (Found on the Tower)
Gear types: 

For both weapons and armor, you'll see the following options: 

  1. Blue (don't worry about stats if it's blue, just choose the highest Power Level to level up)
  2. Purple (Legendary)
  3. Gold (Exotic)
Weapon types: 

There are three weapons you'll see on the left side of your character screen. From top to bottom indicates impact. The first weapon slot is your Kinetic weapon, which means it does not have an energy type attached to it. The second slot is your Energy, which provides bonus energy type damage such as Solar, Arc, and Void. The third slot is your Power weapon, which specifically uses purple ammo bricks. Like armor, there are three color options with Blue, Purple, and Gold. Exotic (Gold) is the best, but you can only equip one Exotic at a time. Legendaries are also powerful and can be made more so with the help of mods. There are mods you can slot in your armor that make it easier to find certain types of ammo. Weapons like Snipers, Fusion Rifles, and Shotguns use green ammo bricks, which work similarly to purple when looking to stay loaded. Purple ammo bricks will always be needed for your Power weapon.

Gear stats: 

For armor, there are various stats to keep in mind, which will vary in importance depending on the class of your choosing:

  • Mobility - Ideal for Hunters
  • Resilience - Ideal for Titans
  • Recovery - Ideal for Warlocks
  • Discipline - Grenade Cooldown reduction
  • Intellect - Super Cooldown reduction
  • Strength - Melee Cooldown reduction
Stasis, a Darkness-based subclass, has longer cooldowns.

Armor and weapons can also be enhanced with the use of mods:

  • General mods, boosts basic stats
  • Slot-specific mods, increases ammo finds, improved ADS times on weapons, and how combat affects you such as decreased incoming ranged damage
  • Combat-style mods, powerful mods that include Charged with Light, Elemental Wells, and Warmind Cells (which are fun to explode for clearing out enemies)
  • Raid mods, only active for specific raids

Obtain mods by buying them from vendors and seasonal-specific characters.

You can also level your gear, as well, with Legendary Shards, Glimmer, and other materials. Level them all the way up to 10 to Masterwork them, making each piece the most powerful it can be without mods. You can obtain Masterwork material from a few different locations, but Spider on the Tangled Shore is my favorite. There are also consumables that you can purchase with Bright Dust in the store tab seen in the image above that will drop Enhancement Cores and Upgrade Modules from defeating powerful enemies. 

My recommendation: 

There is A LOT in Destiny 2. Focus on the story first, story by story. Each expansion will be marked with a certain symbol: Forsaken, Shadowkeep, and Beyond Light. I recommend finishing each expansion individually to keep the story linear and making sense. This will also naturally level you up while also making you more familiar with the game mechanics and the story thus far. You'll also unlock Lore tabs in your character screen, read those to see behind-the-scenes instances within the world for even more story and worldbuilding. 

There are certain instances you will need to matchmake for with other players, with the exception of higher-difficulty Strikes, Grandmasters, Raids, and Trials. For the latter three, try to group up with friends, if you can. You can't solo a Raid, sorry. With crossplay now live, getting with friends is even easier. For other instances like Gambit and Crucible, Bungie provides matchmaking and you don't have to listen to chat if you don't want to (I never do during the rare times I play with people other than my clan). 

The story is wonderful but it's set up in a way that is a little unique to Destiny, which means some elements are easily missed. To avoid this, honestly, do everything - strikes, seasonal content, story missions, etc - especially when limited-time events like Guardian Games and the Halloween event roll around, because they have neat drops and enjoyable breaks from the doom and gloom narrative. 

I hope that helped! Please feel free to reach out to me @DirtyEffinHippy if you have any questions. And remember, gaming is there to enjoy. If you're not having fun, it's not worth it. So get out there, Guardian, and show the Darkness what Light can do! 

Categories: Games

Exploring The Open World Of Elden Ring

Game Informer News Feed - Fri, 08/27/2021 - 14:01

Publisher: Bandai Namco Developer: From Software Release: January 21, 2022 Rating: Rating Pending Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Elden Ring’s open-world contains tons of smaller-scale side dungeons to explore and myriad secrets to discover as you zip around on your spiritual steed. However, these wide-open spaces are quite different than many of the corridor-esque zones that have previously been associated with From Software action RPGs. What does this mean? It means that yes, you can approach the challenges of the world with melee, magic, and ranged options just as you would in other From games, but you can also employ stealth as both an offensive option and a defensive choice. 

Taking on a treasure-filled caravan carefully is a smart choice

As is often the case, many lessons and aspects from older From games make it into their new projects, and Sekiro’s influence is felt here with a bit of stealth and stance-breaking. While breaking an enemy’s stance is somewhat similar to how staggering an opponent would work before, it also offers up a critical strike (similar to Bloodborne’s visceral attack window) opportunity. So if you see a giant lurking around in an open field, you can take the trail less traveled and sneak around them in some bushes if you like. That’s probably the right call as you work around an area for the first time. Like Sekiro, stealth is great for both avoiding dangerous encounters but also for initiating combat, and can make all the difference in success or failure. In a brief video, we saw a player take out a traveling caravan that was stopped for a break. Inside the caravan treasure awaits, but there were many guards in front and to the sides.

These creatures are probably best avoided

The player decided to approach carefully and use a sleep dart to disable and kill the first guard, and then strategically visited the outskirts of the encampment to backstab takedown other guards that were looking down at the valuable payload. Sleep darts are super cool new tools that allow you to disable opponents and execute a crit on their prone form. A little taste of magic was also used to procure the loot, a purple ground blast that’s channeled via item usage and not traditional spellcasting, so even if you choose to go heavy melee or ranged focus you can still access some spot magical effects via items. And speaking of items, let’s talk about a new kind of item that shall prove extremely useful when traveling through these vast areas alone. 

Summoning spirits is a big new component to the From Software action RPG formula in Elden Ring, and these can be acquired, leveled up, and upgraded in different ways that aren’t elaborated on right now. These spirits can take many forms, but one we saw in this demo summoned a small squad of trolls, including a beefy-style tanky troll with a big club and smattering of smaller goblin/orc looking things. What do these do? Well, in addition to dishing out and damage and getting in combat, they fulfill a critical function in battle – they take the enemy’s attention. This can be super helpful in a boss battle to let you get some hits in against a foe without windows of opportunity or in the open world where you may be faced with many different enemies from different directions simultaneously.

Bosses are out there in the open world, too. In the short video we saw, two players carefully maneuvered through the bushes to avoid some huge giant creatures that were sort of similar in design to the cloaked/covered man-serpents of Dark Souls III’s Archdragon Peak. In fact, the field boss they were headed to also shared some similarities. With a long-edged weapon similar to a scythe, the boss of the area was a humanoid shape with a variety of extremely dangerous attacks including wide-multi hit combo swings, point-blank-area-of-effect fire, and more.

The boss creature was wrapped in blankets or a shawl (it was kind of hard to see perfectly and notetaking had to be fast), and featured the uncomfortable elongating nature of the aforementioned Archdragon Peak creatures – as in its neck could pull a Mr. Fantastic and stretch out for both a ghastly visual and a variety of dangerous attacks. This is known as a field boss, and the players were eventually able to triumph against it, and my keen eye noticed that the boss’s demise unveiled a Site of Lost Grace where it was slain, meaning you can acquire checkpoints across the open world by slaying bosses in some areas.

Everything we saw in the short video felt very Soulslike with a touch of Bloodborne and Sekiro sprinkles, but also crisp, clean, fluid, and fantastic. I try not to get excited about games until I’ve actually had hands-on with them, but I’m as optimistic as can be for From’s upcoming title and I cannot wait to see how it lands on January 21, 2022.

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Categories: Games

Elden Ring Impressions: Exploring The Open World, Dungeons, and More

Game Informer News Feed - Fri, 08/27/2021 - 14:01

Click to watch embedded media

Publisher: Bandai Namco Developer: From Software Release: January 21, 2022 Rating: Rating Pending Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

We had an opportunity to see a short video of new Elden Ring footage, featuring about 15 minutes of gameplay. In this video, we got some deeper dives and clarification into some of the game’s mechanics and features. Of note, we got a look a the game’s first legacy dungeon, how the map system and fast travel work, open-world exploration, and even a quick response to whether or not the legendary Moonlight Greatsword would make an appearance. So if you’re looking for more on what to expect from Elden Ring, this is absolutely the right place!

Join Daniel Tack and Alex Stadnik as they break down the E3 Elden Ring Trailer – with the new knowledge gleaned from this new video session. A lot of mysteries have been answered since that first trailer was shown, and you can be sure that From Software will hold all the really serious reveals until release. And we wouldn’t want it any other way, the journey going through From Software’s epic action RPGs is one that should never be spoiled. However, a fresh look at some top-level mechanics and features is something that can’t hurt to be armed with going into battle. In this video feature, we break down things that have already been seen – in a whole new light. Come join us!

Elden Ring takes aspects of all of the previous Souls titles, Bloodborne, and even Sekiro, and turns them into something special inside a huge open world. Not to get too far away from its roots, core dungeon crawling is still very much a part of the experience, with a vast area to explore outside of the carefully curated looping levels. Explore with up to two other players, as well as a retinue of summonable spirits and your loyal spirit steed.

What do you think about Elden Ring?

If comments are still showing as disabled, a site update is happening on our side that has caused a temporary takedown. We hope to have them back up and running soon so our community can go back to sharing their thoughts with us about everything gaming-related! 

Categories: Games

Elden Ring Features A Map And Fast Travel From Almost Anywhere

Game Informer News Feed - Fri, 08/27/2021 - 14:00

Publisher: Bandai Namco Developer: From Software Release: January 21, 2022 Rating: Rating Pending Platform: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

In Elden Ring, players have access to a huge map showcasing the vast open world of The Lands Between and its legacy dungeon areas. Players unlock checkpoints all over this world, very similar to bonfires in other Souls games, known as Sites of Lost Grace. Here’s the big takeaway – you can fast travel around the map to any of your checkpoints as long as you’re in the open world. You won’t be able to port into or out of legacy dungeons in this way as they seem to be their own sort of closed-off core Souls dungeon experience, but anywhere else in the world you can pop up your map and be at your destination almost instantly.

Now, the map is huge, so how do you even go about navigating it? Well, obviously you are going to be doing tons of exploring and looking for landmarks. But, Elden Ring also features something known as map fragments that players can find in a variety of ways that unlock various special markers on the map, to lead players toward points of interest. These breadcrumb items can point you in the direction of all kinds of things. The open-world features hidden areas, optional bosses, and more. You can party with up to two other players in co-op in Elden Ring.

Melina

Elden Ring features a hub area where NPCs you meet may congregate as well, similar to the Firelink Shrine or Majula in the Souls titles. You can go there between adventures to chat, upgrade, and more. However, many of these functions are available at any Site of Lost Grace via a character called “Melina”(SP). Melina is similar to the Maiden in Black, the Emerald Herald, or the Firelink Keeper, and can be summoned at the vast majority of Sites of Lost Grace in order to power up your character and allocate skills. Unlike other games where an ability may have been weapon dependant, the vast majority of weapon skills in Elden Ring can be slotted into any weapon, leading to a great deal of build variety. You can also replenish your healing items at Sites of Lost Grace, and although we don’t know the exact methodology behind healing at this time, this language sort of indicates that Elden Ring is using an Estus Flask-like system.

The Elden Ring Hub Area

When you’re not teleporting, using your spirit steed allows you to travel all over the open world incredibly fast. Various boost points across the map let you blast off and get the verticality you need to traverse steep cliffs or mountainsides. It sounds a bit ridiculous on paper, but in practice, these jump pads actually look pretty cool in action and I hope From lets players see how they appear visually soon. Of important note, you cannot use your steed in dungeons or while engaged with multiplayer. Oh well. 

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Categories: Games

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