Outland Trailer Shows the Battle Between Two Worlds, Also Pretty Colors

It’s sort of a running thread around here lately that downloadable titles are owning big full-price titles, something we mentioned on our last podcast. Just to add another bullet point to that argument, I would like to introduce you to Outland, the new side-scrolling platformer from Housemarque, the development studio behind Super Stardust HD. I saw this game running at PAX 2010, and the first thing that immediately caught my attention was the awesome art style. Take a look at the trailer and see for yourself.

Even if it was the sort of generic “PERIL OF TWO WORLDS OH NOES” type of story, the graphics are enough to get me anticipating this. Apparently the gameplay is sort of like Ikaruga where you need to switch colors to damage foes or interact with the environment. Blue bullets won’t hurt a blue suit, and vice versa. Consider me psyched for this, at least. Anyone else interested in this game? Are you finding yourself anticipating download titles more and more often?

Zombies in Video Games: A Look Back

Zombies have taken over GamerSushi! As Eddy mentioned, a lot of people are getting zombie fatigue, but GamePro was nice enough to take a look back at a history of zombies in video games throughout the years and it’s quite a nice way to get back into the undead spirit.

Personally, Dry Bones from Super Mario Bros 3 didn’t strike me as a zombie, but since they included him, I can’t help but agree. Which leads me to wonder why some Koopa Troopas rise from their graves to torment Mario again and some don’t. Maybe Magikoopa brings them back? Also, Zombies Ate My Neighbors was the bomb back in the SNES days.

Anyway, head here to check out the feature. And don’t act snooty because you know you love zombies, too.

Source: GamePro

Red Dead Redemption Undead Nightmare DLC Trailer Confirms Zombie Bears

As tired as I am of the zombie saturation fad that’s going on, I’m a little ashamed to admit that the Red Dead Redemption Undead Nightmare DLC trailer made me want to go find a copy of the game and play it immediately. As the title clearly indicates, this DLC pack adds a new mission, namely that there are zombies in them there hills, and it’s up to John Marston to find the cure and stop them.

Admittedly, this all sounds so ridiculous, but the new trailer nails the execution. The description also hints at zombie animals and confirms zombie bears that will mutilate you, because, why not? For anyone that’s played the game, the idea of an undead cougar sniping me off the top of my Hungarian Horntail horse is both frightening and titillating. While there’s no official release date, we can only assume that the “very soon” text indicates Halloween.

Anyone going to dead eye some zombie hordes when this finally drops?

Beyond Good and Evil HD in 2011, Produces Joy

Beyond Good and Evil

Listen. You guys are going to have to bear with me for a second: Beyond Good and Evil was one of my favorite games of last generation, which I’ve said more times than I can possibly recount. And Ubisoft has just announced that an HD remake of the game is coming in 2011 to PSN and XBLA. Not only is this just an up-converted version of the game, but the character models and textures are being tweaked for the better, so it looks its best when running at 1080p.

Really, beyond just typing “squeeeee” like a lunatic over and over, all I can say is that this news changed my day. Is that a little melodramatic? Possibly. What I know is that Beyond Good and Evil had an excellent story, awesome characters, Zelda-like mechanics and some great design behind it. While there’s no word on a date or a price yet, we do know that this is coming as a downloadable title, so I honestly wouldn’t expect anything extravagant in terms of cost.

So… am I the only person excited about this? Ridicule me or join in on the enthusiasm.

Source – IGN UK

Everything You Wanted to Know In This Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Gameplay Trailer

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow drops next week on October 5th, and if the earliest reviews are any indication, the game could be a darn good one. To prep fans for all the changes and things to expect in this newest iteration of the long beloved series, Konami has released a brand new gameplay trailer that demonstrates how this is no ordinary Castlevania, and how they intend to take the series down a new path.

With Hideo Kojima in charge, I’ve been impressed with some of the cinematic trailers I’ve seen, and this 11 minute dose of gameplay and introductions is something I wish more game studios did with new releases. If you’ve been on the fence about Lords of Shadow, I’d recommend checking it out, as this might tip you one way or the other.

So, who plans on checking this out? What did you think of the trailer?

Things We Need More of in Gaming

Inspired by yesterday’s post about gaming pet peeves, I’ve been trying to turn that painbow into a rainbow (hooray for Leet World references) and put a positive spin on it. What are some great things I’ve loved about games that are missing nowadays? In an age where all genres are gradually being narrowed into the same thing and folks like me are getting shooter-overload, you’d be surprised at how much good has gone lost from those lovable pieces of old.

Over the last few months, I’ve done and experienced things in games that reminded me of the way things used to be. With titles like Limbo, Guardian of Light, and yes, even Halo: Reach, I was hit with time transportation beams and sent back to remember things that I had not thought about in years. I guess you can say it was like getting an itch scratched that I didn’t even know I had. And once it happened, it felt damn good.

So, here are things we need more of in gaming.
Continue reading Things We Need More of in Gaming

Demons’s Souls, MAG And More Are Now PS3 Greatest Hits

Mag: Greatest HitsSony’s popular line of Greatest Hits titles just leveled up with some big names being added to the library of lower priced games. The program, started back during the PS1 era, is a really great way to get some slightly older games at half price. Each game is listed at $29.99 and the new games added include:

Not too shabby a list and it’s nice to see Demon’s Souls get a fresh run as some were afraid that copies were becoming scarce. For those of you who need a little more information about these games, click on our reviews section at the top or click on the hyperlinked games in the list above for reviews of Demon’s Souls, Ratchet and the two Call of Duty games. Do any of these games seem worthwhile to you now that the price has been slashed? Did anyone just buy one of these and is now unable to type due to a facepalm being administered? Go!

Source: Playstation Blog

Hello Nintendo 3DS, Don’t You Look Nice

Nintendo 3DS

At E3 this year, Nintendo first unveiled its new and often rumored 3DS. The newest upgrade to the DS, as its name points out, brings the third dimension to handheld gaming, in a rather genius way that doesn’t require you to wear the goofy glasses. Ever since this announcement dropped, I’ve been excited to see some final pricing info, particularly with the revelation that so many old favorites such as MGS3 and Ocarina of Time were going to be coming along with it.

Well, that day has finally arrived, as the big N dished out all of the good stuff at its 2010 Nintendo Conference last night. Not only do we have some pricing and release info, but cool stuff about the 3DS’s features, as well as a trailer for its games. Hit the jump to check it out!
Continue reading Hello Nintendo 3DS, Don’t You Look Nice

Zombies Return for Call of Duty: Black Ops

nazi zombies black ops
One of the surprise features in Treyarch’s 2008 Call of Duty entry World at War was the inclusion of the four-player co-op mode Nazi Zombies. Fans of CoD were originally dismissive of this offering, but those of us who played it quickly fell in love with the shambling hordes of Third Reich undead. Nazi Zombies featured a scaling difficulty that meant later rounds necessitated a good team working together, otherwise your soft flesh would quickly provide sustenance for the ravening swarm.

Nazi Zombies quickly gained in popularity throughout World at War’s life-span, with Treyarch adding new maps and even a mythology behind the game. Now that the Call of Duty off-team is up to bat again, they’re putting Nazi Zombies into Black Ops, but tuning it up for the upcoming release. Studio head Mark Lamia gave this little snippet in regards to the return of the walking dead:

“Zombies have been such a hit with our community that we were committed to bringing brand new zombie experiences to Call of Duty: Black Ops. We’ve taken extra special care to retain the essential ingredients of our Zombie game, and have also crafted a nice surprise for the fans.”

There’s nothing else beyond that, but one can only imagine what Nazi Zombies (or Communist Zombies?) is going to look like after two years in development. There have been a lot of changes to Call of Duty since then, so one can only suppose that the mode will change to compensate. I know that my purchase of Black Ops hinged on a Zombie mode, but what about you guys? Ready to kill some whiskey deltas? When more details unfold, we will be sure to include them. If you’re the kind of person who likes a good teasing, Call of Duty: Black Ops site GKNOVA6 has what you’re looking for.

Source – CVG

Dance Fortress 2 Busts a Move

This is sort of a week for excellent dance-themed machinima, it seems. First we get the sublime krogan dance off in the form of Mass Effect 2’s Dance Dance Redemption, and now we have Dance Fortress 2. This little beauty of a video was made by a talented man who goes by the name of James Benson. This project started two months ago, and the culmination of his efforts can be seen below. This was apparently made as a resume to Valve, so best of luck to you, Mr. Benson.

Mass Effect 2 Machinima: Dance Dance Retribution

Oh man, it’s not very often that a machinima piece makes me laugh these days, but then again, most pieces aren’t named Dance Dance Retribution. Nor do they feature two Krogans from Mass Effect 2 dancing. This is a piece created by Blue Suns for the 48 hour machinima contest that was featured in Fantastic Fest this past weekend in Austin, Texas. I kept hearing good things about it, so I just had to post on it.

Really, there’s not much else to say other than that it follows the tale of a Krogan seeking extreme justice through extreme dance moves. And it’s hilarious. Give it a watch.

Best of all? It was co-created by a SmoothFewFilms fan that goes by the handle of Gassy Mexican. Great job, man!

GamerSushi Asks: Things You Hate in Gaming?

Fetch Quest

I don’t generally consider myself a picky gamer, but when something taps into one of my pet peeves, I obsess about it until I go into a fit of epileptic nerd shakes. This list includes some of the following: mess-up-once-and-you’re-done-gameplay, artificially lengthening a game through menial tasks such as fetch quests, not being able to pause or skip long cut scenes, and one of my all time favorites, terrible friendly AI. OK, it’s not actually my favorite. It’s called facetiousism and I just made it up.

On the topic of things that suck in games, GamesRadar has entered the conversation with a hilarious feature titled Things I’m Sick of Games Making Me Do. I totally agree with nearly everything on the list (except climbing, which I can never get enough of), and the last one actually packed quite a lulz-punch, if you know what that means.

So what things do you guys hate in gaming? Go!

Source – GamesRadar

Crazy Dude Building USS Enterprise in Minecraft

I don’t even really know what to say about this, because it’s just one of those crazy things that makes you rethink your life and all the ways you’ve used or wasted it over the years. I won’t lie, when it comes to video games, I have wasted many hours. I’ve thrown marbles down hills in Oblivion. I’ve looked at a girl Spartan’s butt in Halo: Reach. These are things I’ve spent time doing. But I’ve never done anything like this guy.

Apparently, Minecraft nut “halnicholas” has been working hard to construct a 1:1 scale replica of the USS Enterprise NCC-1701-D from Star Trek: The Next Generation in said crafting game. He’s got the framework done, and is looking for skillful trekkies and builders alike to come and help him finish the fight. Wait, I’m mixing sci-fis here.

Anyway, this is certifiably insane and awesome all at once.

Also, is it wrong that this makes me want to play Minecraft even more?

Breath of Death VII Creators Live the Dream

Breath of Death VII

You may or may not have heard of Breath of Death VII, an XBox Live indie game release that has been making the Web rounds for the last few months. Created by Zeboyd Games, a two man development unit, BoDVII is an old school NES style RPG that will cost you only $1 to download and play. It’s chock full of references to old RPGs including Phantasy Star and also packs a nostalgic punch for anybody that has loved and played those great little top-down titles of old.

The duo of developers released some stats on the game the other day, revealing that it has surpassed the 30,000 purchases mark. They also do a rundown of the things that they think the game did well to set itself apart from the rest of the pack, and some advice for would-be fledgling game developers. I know that a few of you are interested in game making yourselves, so I thought it would be a helpful thing to read.

I actually have not heard about this game until today, but I’m planning on downloading it as soon as I get home. Not only has it received some rave reviews, but I just kind of want to support the guys. I mean, seriously, they are living the dream, doing what they love, and made a killing with just a few months of hard work. Kudos to them.

Has anyone heard of this, and do you have any interest in playing it? Go!

Source – Zeboyd Games

Tell Us We’re Wrong: Re-Rate Our Reviews

crackdown 2Normally you guys are pretty accepting of our review scores; there’s some mumbling and grumbling when we rate things a little too high or low, but it’s usually pretty mellow. I know under all that patience is a bubbling crock-pot of hate, ready to come bursting from your finger tips like magma from a volcano. This is the opportunity for you, the GamerSushi community, to give your opinion and re-rate our reviews.

We’ve been talking internally about changing around some scores for a while now, and, as Eddy mentioned on the podcast, the further we get into a given year the more some titles stand out or fade away. For example, I kind of want to change Alan Wake to a B and bump Red Dead Redemption up to an S. Alan Wake sort of fell apart in the last bit and didn’t have that much content compared to this year’s other big A games. Conversely, Red Dead offered so much and was a fantastic looking engaging game. As time has gone by, I’ve forgiven the control and ending issues I had, and I’m kind of regretting my score.

So, we pose the question to you guys: which review scores would you change? Remember to give your reasons, and we’ll take this into consideration in the future. Go!

GamerSushi Asks: What Does Your Game Handle Mean?

AnonymousLast night it came up in an unnamed co-operative game (although I’m sure you could guess its identity) that the people in the party weren’t all aware of the origin of each other’s gamertags. As goofy as it sounds, you can actually learn quite a bit about people and the way they think when you dissect their gamer handles. It tells a bit of a story that perhaps you didn’t know. As anonymous as the gamer handle is meant to be, it’s funny how it can connect you in that way once you know the meaning behind the selection.

For me, Pwnocchio is pretty much the handle I use for everything. It mostly comes from my love of obnoxious puns, plus I used to like shouting “I’m a real boy” in a high-pitched voice whenever I would connect to games. That was several years back, though. And of course, I’m more sophisticated-like these days.

So that being said, what about you guys? What are your normal gamer handles, and what do they mean? In addition, what about your GamerSushi account? Is it the same as those? Go!

Enslaved Goes Behind the Scenes With a New Video

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West is a new game coming out from Ninja Theory, best known for the PS3 launch title Heavenly Sword. I’m not sure if we’ve ever posted about Enslaved on the site, so I’m going to do a quick recap for those who are unfamiliar with this game. Taking place 150 years in the future, the game follows two of the few remaining humans as they attempt to find their way home through a decimated North America past the various combat mechs that still plague the land. Sort of a different spin on the old post-apocalyptic yarn, and it borrows some design elements from the show Life After People, if I remember correctly. Check out the new behind the scenes video for Enslaved: Odyssey to the West which also stars Gollum himself, Andy Serkis!

It’s kind of a shame that I haven’t been following this game more closely, because it looks very intriguing. The game is actually coming out on October 5, so it’s hitting right at that perfect time before Call of Duty: Black Ops and Fallout: New Vegas dominate the market. Anyone here thinking of picking this up? Also, I want my title to be “Chief Creative Ninja”.

Microsoft Says It Needs to “Step Up” Its PC Support

games-for-windows-live-logoIt’s funny how things can change in just a few years. Microsoft, once the PC gaming giant, has now taken a back seat in that race, preferring instead to dump its collective resources into the console game. While it is making a good amount of head-way there, the giant company is rightly getting a bit of flack for “abandoning” the PC. Microsoft recognizes that it needs to give a bit more attention to the platform that launched its gaming business, and there are a few initiatives underway to make that happen.

Microsoft Game Studios’ General Manager Dave Luehmann recently had a little chat with MCV where he outlined the plan for the PC resurgence. He spoke pretty candidly on Microsoft’s stance in the industry, while at the same time being less than humble about the company’s position as a former forerunner:

“There’s been a fair bit of criticism aimed at Microsoft that we were spending a lot of our focus on console, and we need to be putting resources behind PC as well. Other companies should look to Microsoft for leadership, but I’m not sure they do. It is our job to lead the way on PC. And in some ways we are doing that and in other ways we are not. So we need to step up. We are putting some real investment and big IPs behind the Windows platform. We’ve spoken of the first three, Fable III, Age of Empires Online and Microsoft Flight. However we are not going to stop there.”

One thing is for sure, Mr. Luehmann knows how to talk a big talk. While X-Box LIVE has done some revolutionary things in regards to party connectivity and nickle-and-diming the customer, Games for Windows LIVE continues to languish as XBL’s neglected cousin. For those of us who play our games on the PC, GFWL is sort of a black-sheep compared to other, more user friendly services such as Steam or Impulse. While it’s nice that Microsoft recognizes the importance of PC gaming, it still remains to be seen as to whether or not they’ll actually do as they promise. What do you guys think of MS’s stance? Should they reassert themselves in the PC gaming scene, or is this just an empty boast? With the X-Box doing fairly well and Kinect on the way, should we even expect for Microsoft to bother with their former territory? Let us know!

Source: MCV

Review: Halo: Reach

Reach Winter ContingencyWhether we like it or not, Halo is a game that changed the FPS landscape forever. It can be argued that this is for both good and ill, but the fact remains that the epic FPS sci-fi series from Bungie typically constitutes a natural disaster in whatever year it arrives. Halo: Reach has made landfall, gentlemen, and it’s time to sort out the damage.

After a couple weeks of reading other Halo: Reach reviews, there seems to be a general consensus. One, that writers like to use the phrase “swan song”. Two, that Bungie’s final installment into the Halo series culminates in what might be its greatest and most critically acclaimed title yet. Reviewing a Halo game carries with it a tricky balance of managing hype, expectations and fanboy glee, but in Reach, it’s hard to ignore all of the wonderful things that Bungie accomplished, and how they’ve changed the game yet again moving forward.

So, just how good is the game? Read on to find out. Continue reading Review: Halo: Reach

The Sound and Fury of Fallout: New Vegas

Fallout’s biggest hook, at least for me, is the technology, envisioned as an extension of the 1950’s wistful imaginings of the future. All the computers are big, bulky and full of vacuum tubes, and the guns fire iridescent blobs of green plasma. It’s got a sort of innocent charm the belies the often brutal nature of post-apocalyptic survival, and the team at Obsidian is kicking the technology up a notch for New Vegas. While the game has the typical range of conventional weaponry, new types of energy guns will be included, like the Recharge Rifle, which replenishes its internal battery instead of requiring ammo. Pretty neat, if you ask me. Take a look at the most recent New Vegas Developer Diary for some other changes, including a look at the game’s sound design:

I tried the grenade machine gun during my hands on time with New Vegas at PAX 2010, and it is just as fun as it sounds. I also like they way Obsidian is taking the desert environment into account with distance being factored into how you will perceive sound. Despite some reservation on this title due to the fact that it is in the hands of Obsidian (no offense, but they don’t exactly have a stellar track record), New Vegas is shaping up nicely. Any opinions on the weapons and the auditory goodness in New Vegas? What system will you play it on? Fallout: New Vegas will be out October 19, 2010.