Bungie’s Jason Jones Explains Just What the Heck Destiny Is

Are you confused by the lack of information about what the available game modes of Destiny? So am I, which is why I’m grateful that Bungie put out a video where Jason Jones explains what you’ll be doing when the Destiny Beta drops on July 17, or when the full game hits on September 9. Check it out:

So it seems like we have the Tower (third-person social space), story-missions, a free-roam/do side-quests type of thing, Strikes, and a multiplayer arena. Destiny seems to have a lot of stuff to do but I still can’t shake the feeling that it might be kind of bland. That might just be me though. How is Destiny shaping up for you?

Battlefield 4 Getting “Netcode” Patch on All Platforms

After weeks of testing in the CTE (Community Test Environment) the Battlefield 4 “netcode” improvements are being rolled out to every version of the game today in a patch according to a new post on Battlelog. The “netcode” patch improves (among other things) the server tick-rate, or how often you computer receives new information from the server. Battlefield 4 previously had a tick-rate of 10hz, or ten updates a second (industry standard for FPS games is 30-60).

The Sheer Joy of Mario Kart 8

mario kart 8 impressions

Over the weekend I played a healthy amount of Mario Kart 8 and I can firmly say that this is the most fun I’ve had with the series in a long time. This game feels like a perfect evolution for the series with new features that make sense and a lot of returning mechanics from the previous games that are implemented in clever ways. The new hover segments, where the tires on your vehicle turn sideways and you float a foot or so off the ground, manages to feel like an integral part of how you play in Mario Kart 8 and not just a new gimmick to put on the back of the box. Hovering turns the gameplay on its head, sometimes literally, and forces you to think differently, like purposely bumping into other races to get a speed boost instead of avoiding them.

It helps that Mario Kart 8 is an amazing looking game and even in local two-player splitscreen it still delivers a 60 frame per second performance. Across the eight different cups are 32 tracks, 16 new and 16 returning and all have been tweaked to take full advantage of the different modes of transportation. In one race alone you might be underwater, gliding through the air and hovering upside down. Mario Kart 8 keeps you constantly engaged by changing up the progression of the race so you never feel like you’re just going through the motions. The soundtrack is nearly fully orchestrated this time and is a huge improvement over the music of Mario Kart Wii. Continue reading The Sheer Joy of Mario Kart 8

Battlefield: Hardline Revealed in Battlelog Update

battlefield hardline

Update: Yep, Battlefield: Hardline is real.

Battlelog, DICE’s browser-based interface that they’ve been forcing on the gaming public since Battlefield 3, received an update this morning. Instead of the assignments for the upcoming expansion pack Dragon’s Teeth, an entierly different kind of surprised was included.

While digging through the source code of Battlelog, denizen of the Internet Koen Vlaswinkel found a whole bunch of information about Battlefield: Hardline, including weapons, vehicles, classes, gamemodes and who’s developing it. From the images Battlefield: Hardline looks like it will be SWAT vs Thieves on a variety of urban maps with gamemodes such as Heist and Blood Money, giving it a very Payday feel. Continue reading Battlefield: Hardline Revealed in Battlelog Update

Having Some Dumb Fun with Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army 2

sniper elite nazi zombie army 2

About a month ago I got gifted a copy of Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army 2 on Steam and I didn’t bother playing it until this past weekend. I didn’t expect much from it, but I was surprised at how fun it ended up being.

If you’ve played Call of Duty’s zombie mode, then the set-up will sound very familiar: four WW2-era soldiers battle the Nazi zombie horde while searching for a way to end the onslaught. The difference here is that Sniper Elite is very much focused on long-range combat, so you’ll mostly be pulling sick headshots on a lot of shambling zombies. Unlike CoD’s version, the zombies (for the most part) in NZA2 are the slow, shuffling variety so you always have a fighting chance. There are a few “super” zombies like the machine gun guy or the summoner, but as you progress the zombies don’t get faster and more resilient, which I greatly appreciated.

Nazi Zombie Army 2 is by no means perfect, as I found that actually controlling your character was fairly sloppy and the cover system was basically useless. What NZA2 does well, however, is giving you slow-motion shots of your bullets destroying undead Nazi skulls and in the end, isn’t that all we really want?

A friend and I played this for a couple of hours on Saturday and I had a blast. The fact that it was free definitely helped, but it was much better than I expected and it got me interested in the Sniper Elite franchise in general (which has a three-quel coming out, wouldn’t you know it). Has anyone played any of the Sniper Elite series? What do you think of it?

Taking a Swing at Mario Golf: World Tour

mario golf world tour

It’s been a good ten years since we last saw a Mario Golf game, but longtime Nintendo sports collaborators Camelot are at it again with Mario Golf: World Tour, a 3DS title that came out on May 2.

The Mario Golf games have either been strictly arcade-like or had some light RPG aspects and World Tour seems to straddle both of these disciplines. Playing as your Mii in the “Castle Club” mode, you use the tried-and-true power bar to control your shots and for each course you complete (whether it’s a practice round or a tournament), you unlock a new piece of stat-altering gear in the pro shop which you can put on your golfer. Continue reading Taking a Swing at Mario Golf: World Tour

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Trailer Will Topple Your Expectations like a House of Cards

Originally the plan was for the newest Call of Duty game, made by Modern Warfare 3 collaborator Sledgehammer Games, to be revealed this coming Sunday, but you know how the Internet works. The official trailer for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is out now and it features Kevin Spacey (who is a Southern accent away from portraying Frank Underwood), drones, exoskeletons, hover bikes and much much more. If you thought Black Ops 2 was futuristic, wait until you get a load of this:

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare certainly looks nice, but there are also a lot of signs that point to it being on an upgraded version of the same old engine (I swear, I’ve watched the same running animation for the soldiers in slow-mo since 2007). What do you guys think of this reveal? Back on the Call of Duty hype-train? Can Advanced Warfare pick up after the post-Ghosts slump? According to the trailer, the release date for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is November 4, 2014. No consoles were specifically listed, except for the Xbox One version which provided the footage for the trailer.