Nintendo Hosting Super Smash Bros. Switch & Splatoon 2 Tournaments At E3

Nintendo is letting gamers at E3 dive right in and test their mettle with the newly announced Super Smash Bros. title on the Switch. Both the upcoming game and Splatoon 2 will have tournaments from June 11-12 at the convention.

The Splatoon 2 tournament also features qualifiers that take place before E3 (click here for more info), whereas the unreleased Super Smash Bros. will be played by a select group of players invited by Nintendo. 

No new details on Super Smash Bros. on Switch have been announced. 

[Source: Nintendo] 

Beta Test Nintendo Hosting Super Smash Bros. Switch & Splatoon 2 Tournaments At E3

PUBG's Event Mode Mixes It Up

PUBG is trying out new game parameters with Event Mode – a place where PUBG Corp wants to present new ideas outside of the regular experience.

Event mode is accessible in the main menu, and its first twist is to double the rifle drop rate (matchmaking with the third-person perspective on Erangel).

The mode is unranked, although you’ll get BP at the end of a match.

PUBG Corp. says Event mode will go live soon once testing is complete, and teases that one of its next iterations includes the flare gun.

[Source: PUBG] 


Our Take 
This sounds like a great way to not only offer something different from the core experience, but also to test out possible new ideas that could become mainstays.

Beta Test PUBG’s Event Mode Mixes It Up

Innovative Ideas Rule IGF Awards, While Nintendo Leaves A Big Impression At GDC Awards

During the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, the game development community got together to recognize indie and AAA games across the Independent Games Festival and Game Developers Choice Awards. The indie awards this year focused on a number of smaller and innovative titles with a mix of fan favorites, while the Choice Awards focused heavily on major titles like Zelda and Horizon.

Rami Ismail was given the Ambassador award for his achievements in outreach and mentorship and Tim Schafer, who broke his award on stage accidentally, was given the Lifetime Achievement award.

IGF Awards

Best Student Game  
Baba Is You

Excellence in Visual Art

Excellence in Audio
Uurnog Uurnlimited

Excellence in Design
Babe Is You

Nuovo Award
Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy

Excellence in Narrative
Night in the Woods

Audience Award

Seumas McNally Grand Prize 

Night in the Woods

Game Developers Choice Awards

Best Debut


Best Mobile Game


Best Narrative

What Remains of Edith Finch

Best Technology 
Horizon Zero Dawn

Best Audio 
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Best Visual Art

Best Design 
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Best VR/AR Game
Superhot VR

Audience Award
Nier: Automata

Innovation Awards 

Game of the Year 
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Beta Test Innovative Ideas Rule IGF Awards, While Nintendo Leaves A Big Impression At GDC Awards

Game Developer Unionization Talk Stirs Amidst IGDA Concerns


At the Game Developers Conference this year, a roundtable
discussion on the subject of establishing unions within the gaming industry was
held under a cloud of anticipation and anxiety. The discussion, which was
held and moderated by International Game Developers Association president Jen
MacLean, involved a hundred or so developers in the room speaking their minds
about their desires to unionize as a means to prevent poor working conditions.

The subject has been particularly touchy in recent days due
to comments from MacLean herself, having made her concerns about unionization
more prominent in the last few days during interviews with USGamer and Kotaku.
MacLean’s arguments against unionization seemed to stem from a belief that the
current status quo was not disadvantageous to developers, which did not sit
well with developers who believed the opposite.

As a result of MacLean’s initial interview with USGamer, a
group of developers formed the Game Workers Unite movement, an effort to
encourage developers to unionize. Members of the movement have been passing
around pamphlets all week, purporting to explain why unions in the game
industry can help the creative forces behind games.

The roundtable discussion began with MacLean stating that,
as the moderator of the discussion, she would likely be speaking the least and
preferred to let the freeflowing exchange of ideas take charge of the room.
This did not hold, however, as MacLean quickly found herself outnumbered by an
overwhelming ratio of pro-union attendees.

The tone of the discussion was overall genial, but it was
clear before too long that both sides disagreed on the fundamental issue with
little common ground. About halfway through the panel, MacLean asked the room
if there were any game developer concerns that unionizing would fail to address
or make worse, only to be met with silence. She then relayed a story about
union plumbers that fought against plumbing improvements in a building and
demanded money for unnecessary improvements.

When pressed on how the anecdote applied to the video game
industry by a person in the crowd, MacLean demurred and chose to move on.

Had a vote been held in the room right then, it is
exceedingly likely that game developer unions would have been formed today,
based on the air of the room. Developers planning and trying to unionize have a
much longer battle ahead than one room, however, though it seems almost
inevitable at this point.

Game Developers Conference is currently being held in San Francisco.

Beta Test Game Developer Unionization Talk Stirs Amidst IGDA Concerns

#WarGames Review – Not Quite A Winning Move

Sam Barlow’s previous game, Her Story, channels the appeal of older technology
to tell an enriching mystery, his latest effort stokes more current anxieties.
#WarGames touches on the modern surveillance state, our vulnerability to being
exposed online, and the veracity of news media. But while its premise and
approach to cinematic storytelling are intriguing, its storytelling lacks the
punch necessary to build on its novelty.

does a good job of making you feel like a voyeuristic hacker. The story plays
out through an interface of shifting video feeds of characters’ webcams and
phones, as well as security feeds, Twitter pages, and more. You can highlight a
specific feed to enlarge it, letting you pick up on a few minor character
moments you might otherwise miss. You can also alter the story depending on
which feeds you focus on, but shifting to a specific character’s video didn’t
make me feel like an active participant in the story. Instead, I felt like a
moviegoer who had to do a little extra work to get the full picture.

multi-screen approach to storytelling puts a large emphasis on characters,
which #WarGames falters on as often as it succeeds. The story follows Kelly
“L1ghtman” Grant, one part of the hobbyist hacker crew “#WarGames,” who enjoys
screwing with celebrities and uploading viral videos exposing them. When Kelly
sees a misleading report on the news accusing her now-deceased veteran mother
of treason, however, she and the #WarGames crew start tackling more personal

Jess Nurse does a great job of bringing Kelly to life, and she quickly won me
over.  Many of the secondary characters,
such as bratty schoolkid Zane or mother-of-two Torch, are hit-or-miss; awkward
lines and overeager deliveries reminded me more of a budget TV series than a
blockbuster film. This is clearly Kelly’s story, but you don’t get enough
screen time with anyone else for them to develop. Still, the interactions
between #WarGames, their allies, and their targets lead to some fun moments,
especially as the action ramps up during a couple of heists.

(Please visit the site to view this media)

plot also draws parallels to real-world events, such as the controversy
surrounding U.S. Army soldier Bowe Bergdahl, the circulation of US weapons to
war-torn countries, and the doxxing and exposing of high-profile celebrities.
These are all fascinating threads to pull on, and the story is at its best when
it explores their implications. But the plot only skims their surface, leading
to a bland story that stifles its message and ends on a disappointing

can go back through the season once you’ve finished all six episodes, but there
isn’t much reason to. The additional scenes you unlock by focusing on different
screens don’t justify multiple playthroughs. You might learn a thing or two
about different characters, but you can’t meaningfully alter the course of the

biggest difference I encountered comes when the #WarGames crew tries to sneak
into a target’s hotel room. On my first playthrough, Kelly acted as a diversion
by confronting the target head-on long enough for her boyfriend Rafi to get in
and out of the room undetected. The second time, Zane was able to activate the
sprinklers, forcing everyone out of the building and letting Rafi get away.
Most other differences, however, are negligible.

#WarGames’ TV-style
branding suggests a second season might soon emerge, but I’m not invested in
seeing it continue at this point. It has potential as an experiment in
interactive storytelling, but it’s going to take better acting, more meaningful
choices, and meatier subject matter to keep me on board.

Beta Test #WarGames Review – Not Quite A Winning Move

Little Dragons Café Is Just As Charming As It Sounds

Last month, Aksys Games unveiled Little Dragons Café, an adorable game that combines restaurant management, raising a dragon, and cooking. It’s a concept that interested us immediately, and today, we were able to get our first hands-on time with it on Nintendo Switch.

Aksys teamed up with Harvest Moon creator Yasuhiro Wada to bring Little Dragons Café to life. The story follows twins Ren and Rin, whose mother mysteriously falls into a deep sleep and is unable to wake up. You can play as either twin and name them whatever you wish. The sibling you choose not to play appears as your brother or sister in the café. After meeting a plump, wizard-like old man named Pappy, the twins discover that the only way to save their mother is to raise a dragon and feed it delicious food. At first, the two are overwhelmed at the idea of running a café without their mother, but once they learn the ropes, everything becomes smoother.

Running the business requires you to venture out into the wilds on your island. This island was instantly engaging to me, filled with animals that have colorful, food-like appearances, such as one beast having what looks like a chicken leg bone for a tail. Hunting these creatures gives you ingredients, but if they attack you, they may eat up ingredients you’ve already collected. Luckily, when your dragon grows older, it can help you take them down.

You can also fish at certain spots by the water. The fishing minigame is easy to play, requiring you to press A to cast, and then A again to reel. If you reel in when a fish is biting, which is indicated by two exclamation points, you can catch a fish and bring it back to the café. 

As you gather ingredients, you also look for recipe fragments. When you collect four of one type, you learn a new recipe to cook for patrons at the café. I enjoyed searching around for recipe fragments and even instructing my dragon to crawl into hard-to-reach spaces, like a small cave, that I couldn’t enter myself.

Your customers come from all over the world, and they may offer you quests and recipes of their own if you satisfy them with a good meal. These patrons come with unique problems, and your food can help bring them peace. Cooking comes in the form of a rhythm minigame, where you press arrows at the correct time. The only recipe I made in the demo was sunny-side up fried eggs. The rhythm segment was very simple, only taking about five seconds to complete, though this was part of a tutorial segment early on in the game. Difficulty ramps up later when you acquire tougher recipes. 

What I enjoyed most about Little Dragons Café was the concept of raising my dragon, as well as exploration. How far you can venture out depends on what stage of life your dragon is at. For example, when you hit stage three, your dragon can fly and you can ride on its back to reach areas that were inaccessible beforehand (though I didn’t get to fly the dragon in my demo). Wada said the open world is “pretty big,” and has distinct areas, including a large volcano. Your dragon’s name and color are customizable, too. The latter depends on what you feed it; providing many dishes that have a blue indicator will eventually turn your dragon blue.

Little Dragons Café has a delightful world and concept, and it was just as charming as I had hoped. While I still have many questions, I’m excited to raise a dragon and hunt for new recipes when this title releases for Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 in the summer.

Beta Test Little Dragons Café Is Just As Charming As It Sounds

Rare Discusses Sea Of Thieves' Launch Issues

We don’t expect a pirate’s life to be easy, but players of Sea of Thieves have been encountering inconveniences that make the simulation difficult to enjoy.

Rare has posted an update about the status of various complications in the game (which only launched a couple days ago), giving a timeframe for various fixes and suggestions for avoiding the problems.

Some of the known issues include delayed achievements, missing items, and Xbox One X performance issues. For the full rundown, click on the update above or watch the video below:

(Please visit the site to view this media)

While our official Sea of Thieves review is still in the works, we do have staff members playing the game and sharing their thoughts.

Beta Test Rare Discusses Sea Of Thieves’ Launch Issues

Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Edition Hits May 29

Capcom announced that Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Edition is bursting onto PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC on May 29. First teased during the Capcom Cup at 2017’s PlayStation Experience, the collection encapsulates all of the arcade cabinet classics. Here’s a list of all the games that are included with this anniversary edition:

  • Street Fighter
  • Street Fighter II
  • Street Fighter II: Champion Edition
  • Street Fighter II: Hyper Fighting
  • Super Street Fighter II
  • Super Street Fighter II: Turbo 
  • Street Fighter Alpha
  • Street Fighter Alpha 2
  • Street Fighter Alpha 3
  • Street Fighter III
  • Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact
  • Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike

(Please visit the site to view this media)

Those who pre-order the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Edition on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or PC will also receive Ultra Street Fighter IV at no additional cost. If you can’t get enough Street Fighter, check out the new DLC coming to Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition, courtesy of the Capcom Pro Tour.

[Source: Playstation Blog]

Beta Test Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Edition Hits May 29

The Next Elder Scrolls Online Expansion Returns To The Series' Roots

Elder Scrolls Online already mined fans of the series’ nostalgia by returning to Morrowind, the setting of one of the most beloved Elder Scrolls game, with an expansion that was well-received by the community. Today Bethesda revealed they were once again digging into the series’ past but this time going all the way back to the beginning.

The new expansion pack, Summerset, will focus on the isle of Summerset, the home of the High Elves, and a setting that hasn’t been seen since Elder Scrolls: Arena. The expansion introduces a new zone, the isle itself, for players to explore, a major quest, new skills, and the ability to craft jewlery. Bethesda says that new players can jump into the expansion with ease since Summerset includes a tutorial and starter area.

You can watch the cinematic announcement trailer for the expansion pack right here:

(Please visit the site to view this media)

Summerset will launch on June 6. The standard edition of Summerset (which includes ESO) will cost $39.99. If you already have the base game and just want to upgrade, you can grab Summerset for $29.99.

If you want to try ESO for free, the game is running a trial until March 27.


Our Take
Given how much press and how enamanmored players were with ESO giving them the chance to revisit Morrowind, it makes sense Bethesda would want to mine the nostalgia some more. We’re curious to see if Summerset brings a huge number of players back to ESO’s world.

Beta Test The Next Elder Scrolls Online Expansion Returns To The Series’ Roots

Update: First Three Tomb Raiders Aren't Receiving Remasters After All

Well, it was a nice idea while it lasted. Realtech VR’s PC remasters of the first three Tomb Raider titles don’t seem to happening anymore.

Something may have gone awry behind the scenes, because the developer tweeted a (now-deleted) announcement of the projects’ cancelation, and the videos are now offline. Then the company tweeted another statement (below) indicating that the studio is no longer working on third-party licenses.  


Original Story (published 3/11/18)

The first three Tomb Raider games, each of which released during the late ’90s, are receiving remasters on Steam. If you own the original DOS versions on Steam, you’ll be able to grab these remasters for free.

Realtech VR, a developer that previously ported Tomb Raider 1 and 2 on mobile, is behind these upcoming remasters. As such, the PC remasters will be based off the mobile versions, support OpenVR, and feature a new 3D engine. 

Realtech also announced that a Tomb Raider 3 mobile port is in the works, and will be showcased in early April before its release. Last year, the company showed off footage of the unreleased PC remasters on YouTube. You can view a couple of these videos below.

(Please visit the site to view this media)

(Please visit the site to view this media)

The remastered releases of Tomb Raider 1, 2, and 3 don’t currently have a release window or price range (if you don’t own the originals), but should we find out, we’ll update this article. Late last year, Square Enix teased that a new Tomb Raider is on its way, and that we’ll hear more in 2018. A new Tomb Raider film is also releasing soon. You can read our feature about what the films got right and wrong about the series by heading here.


Our Take
I haven’t played Realtech VR’s mobile ports of the original Tomb Raider games, but they seem to have been well-received on the iOS App Store. Although the above videos don’t show massive graphical overhauls, it still looks like a worthy upgrade with crisper aesthetics.

Beta Test Update: First Three Tomb Raiders Aren’t Receiving Remasters After All