Battlefield 1 Announced, Set in World War 1

The newest installment in EA’s Battlefield series has been announced. Officially called ‘Battlefield 1’, the game departs from the standard FPS cliches by being set during World War 1 rather than World War 2 or the present day. Here’s a trailer for the game:

Above: Not quite your usual FPS game setup…

As you can see, the setting has done wonders for the game’s originality. You got the brutal trench warfare that characterised this conflict. You’ve got horseback combat, since this was the last major war where mounted calvalry played an important role. The planes are all styled after the old school biplanes of the era. Either way, it seems a bit more interesting than the usual FPS game, and EA says it will feature some of the ‘largest and most dynamic battles in FPS history’.

There will also apparently be a heavy focus on melee combat, since weapons like bayonets, batons and rapiers were used more often in this conflict.

Battlefield 1 will be released on October 21st for the PC, PS4 and Xbox One, and will be available early through EA Access.

But what do you think about the game? Are you interested in the idea of an FPS game set during World War 1? Could this time period and setting make a nice change from the endless glut of modern day and futuristic shooters on the market?

Source:

Battlefield 1 Officially Confirmed – IGN

Mighty No 9 Now Has a Release Date

It’s been delayed three times. Problems with ‘network functionality’ have caused issues for months, and many people have already given up on the game. Indeed, Mighty No 9 was quickly taking up Duke Nukem Forever’s mantle of ‘game that never gets released’ due to all the delays and development problems it’s been having.

But now it seems the Mighty No 9 debacle might finally be coming to a close. The game has now gone gold, and will now be released on June 21st (in America and Asia) and June 24th (everywhere else). What’s more, unlike the previous release dates, the team even outright states that ‘there will be no further delays’. Here’s the announcement post about it on the official Mighty No 9 website:

Mighty No 9 – Goes Gold (official site)

It’s still not everything (apparently the 3DS and Vita ports are coming at a later date), but now it seems the wait for this Mega Man successor is finally over. But will people still care about Keiji Inafune’s project when June rolls around? Will it live up to the hype its generated in the last few months? Will the Wii U version even sell now that the console is being discontinued within a year or two? We’ll have to wait and see.

What do you think about Mighty No 9’s new release date?

Hoax Glitch for The Division Fools Numerous Gaming Sites

In today’s era of day one patches, rushed games and quality assurance practices not being followed too well, it’s not surprising that articles about glitches are common. Whether it’s the Lumiose City glitch in Pokemon X and Y, the three million ways to break Mario & Luigi Paper Jam or Super Mario Maker’s invincibility bug, these things are the subject of numerous articles across an almost infinite number of gaming websites.

But how about when the glitch isn’t real?

How about when someone on Reddit makes up a fake glitch for a popular new game? Like say, The Division?

Because that’s exactly what happened. Reddit user el2mador wrote a post on the subreddit for The Division about how enemy mobs could kill the APC for you. Unfortunately for anyone who tried it, the glitch didn’t work. It was a hoax meant to see how much attention a post about a bug in the game could get.

The gaming press fell for it hook, line and sinker.

And what’s worse, I don’t mean a couple of small websites or independent bloggers fell for it. I mean the likes of IGN and Gamespot reported on it as fact. Despite you know, not actually testing whether it worked. Here’s a list of all the different sites who posted about the ‘exploit’:

The Division: New Exploit Found Hours After Ubisoft Fixes Another – IGN
The Division ‘Falcon Incursion’ exploit hotfix brings new glitch – GameZone
The Division: New Glitch Found in Falcon Lost Incursion – Twinfinite
The Division’s New Bug Makes the AI Work for You – Gamespot
‘Tom Clancy’s The Division:’ New glitch found in Falcon Lost Incursion, lets NPCs kill boss – ibTimes
‘The Division’ Falcon Lost ‘Friendly Fire’ Glitch: Let NPC’s Take Down The APC For You – iDigitalTimes
As Ubisoft fixes one big The Division exploit, players find another – Eurogamer

Note that the above links are archived, since quite a few were deleted since the hoax was revealed. Personally, I’m not a fan of that, it comes across as trying to ‘hide’ your mistakes. These sites should have done what real newspapers do, issued a correction in the article stating that they were fooled by a hoax.

But that aside, what do I think of the situation? Well to be honest, I’d say it brings to light two major issues when it comes to video games and the media.

Number 1 is how dodgy glitch reporting is in general. Think about it. Let’s say you find a glitch being discussed online and there’s no proof that it’s real.

Now, let’s assume you test it and it doesn’t seem to work. What’s the situation here?

Well, it could be any number of things really:

The glitch could be a hoax like in this situation. It’s not a massively common situation, but it does happen, and it’s happened before Th Division was even a game. Did you know that both times Maple Treeway was in a Mario Kart game, someone faked a glitch shortcut for it? Yeah, that’s a real story. People made fake videos showing non existent glitches on the track for both the Mario Kart Wii and Mario Kart 7 versions.

You might have messed up somewhere along the line, perhaps because the instructions given were vague or poorly written. This is a depressingly common occurrence, and a great example can be seen here:

If Paper Mario attempts to defeat one of the Paper Fuzzies before they attack, just before they attack, the game will crash, making the system reset.

That’s an item on Mario Wiki’s page for Mario & Luigi Paper Jam glitches. Don’t get it? Nor do I, and I’ve tried everything to see if this glitch works. Do you attack them on your own turn? Counterattack them on theirs? Use a specific attack? Kill them? Don’t kill them? It’s very unclear and a complete toss up as to whether you’ve figured out what the original writer meant.

The specific copy of the game used by the glitch finder could be broken. If a disc and cartridge has a factory defect, it can cause bugs. If the battery starts to fail, it can cause bugs. If it gets corrupted while being downloaded, it can cause bugs. And on a computer? God help you there, because the amount of possible operating system, driver and device combinations approaches infinite.

Glitches also aren’t always that easy to test. Like these ones:

A journalist will struggle enormously at trying to get frame specific actions to work correctly. And it’s not much better in cases like online multiplayer games, where the behaviour of other players or the AI has to be taken into consideration for some of them to work.

Lag doesn’t help either. If a game lags massively, then the effect can resemble a ton of glitches or a hacker modifying the game for an easy win. As many, many Mario Kart players complaining about people falling off Rainbow Road (then warping back on afterwards) will make clear.

And then there’s plain old human memory, which isn’t anywhere near as good as we think it is. It’s very easy for people to get fake memories if they’re convinced that something unusual actually happened, or for them to get confused and think something strange occurred when it was merely something more benign.

So that’s one thing it teaches us. That reports of glitches on forums and social media are incredibly hard to verify, and might well be utterly wrong.

The second thing it proves is how little fact checking the media does nowadays. I mean, while it would certainly be hard to prove/disprove this particular bug exists, it could be done to within reasonable doubt if the journalist went around, tried the game for a while, asked other people’s opinion, etc. But modern journalism doesn’t allow for that. It wants quickly written articles put up the second the news breaks out, not deeply researched pieces that come out at a rate of two or three articles a week. So as per usual, fact checking is ignored, comments on Reddit are taken as gospel and the media jumps on a ‘hot’ story about a game that’s already being heavily criticised for other things.

Either way, let this teach you all a couple of important lessons; the media does no fact checking, and glitches are extremely hard to verify one way or another.

Source:

Reddit Post about the Hoax (archived)

Five Nights at Freddy’s: Sister Location Announced!

With four games and an RPG spinoff, the Five Nights at Freddy’s series has become an incredibly successful series even with its simple concept and gameplay.

But the story has been wrapped up. We know who the murderer was and what became of him. We know what caused the bite of ’87. And hey, with Fazbear’s Frights burning down in the third game, we even see the story of the ghost children reach its conclusion. What room is there for yet another game?

Well, you’d better ask Scott Cawthon, because yet another game has been teased. Titled Five Nights at Freddy’s: Sister Location, the game takes place at what is presumably another location. With its own animatronics, one of whichs seems to be a clown like monster. Here’s the teaser picture from the official site:

five nights at freddys 5

So what can I say about this?

Two things actually.

1. If this game does play like the previous games, then please try and limit the ties to the first four. Seriously, the plot there has basically been tied up at this point, and it’d be interesting to see a new story start to unfold.

2. Mr Cawthon should really slow down a bit here. Seriously, the franchise started in 2014. Yet in just two years, we’ve gotten four games and a spinoff, with another one due fairly soon. That’s kind of excessive, especially when the basic concept isn’t changing or evolving very much along the way.

Remember, too many games will kill people’s interest in a series. They’ll get fatigue and tune out. Don’t believe me?

Look up Guitar Hero, DJ Hero and their archenemy, Rock Band.

What happened there?

They died. They put out so many games in so little time they basically killed all interest in the virtual band/musican genre. Harmonix nearly got sold off for just fifty dollars and many of Activision’s ‘Hero’ games got canned as well. The cash cow was milked to the point it ran completely dry.

If Five Nights at Freddy’s wants to become a sustainable franchise with a future, then it needs to accept that releasing games multiple times per year is going to cause people to get tired of them. Pumping out games every couple of months is not sustainable.

Still, I’ll say a bit more positive for now. Maybe this will be a massive overhaul for the series which revolutionises the gameplay and keeps the series feeling fresh. There’s always the possibiliy, right?

But what do you think about Five Nights at Freddy’s: Sister Location?

Source:

Teaser for Five Nights at Freddy’s: Sister Location – Scott Games

Guitar Hero Was Going to Get an MMO?

When it comes to MMOs, some genres are more common than others. MMORPGs are ten a penny, as evidenced by everything from Everquest to Runescape and World of Warcraft. MMOFPS games are less common, but gradually growing in popularity. And over in some parts of the world, massive online strategy games are part of the culture.

But did you know that Guitar Hero was going to get one too? Yes, the rhythmn game series was going to get an MMO game. Named ‘Hero World’, it would let you become a global business mogul by building venues and setting up gigs. Here’s a video by Liam Robertson of Unseen64 about the game and its history:

As you can see, they were certainly going for something original here. You had dance offs where your character would battle others in Paper Mario style. You could give in game cash to other players to have them play at your concerts. Heck, you could were even going to be able to connect it to the console games! You know, cross-play. In an Activision Rhythm game of all things…

Either way, I do wish this game had seen the light of day. I mean, it’s not my thing, but it does seem to have a certain amount of depth to the whole experience. And hey, it was honest too (no necessary microtransactions).

But what do you think? Would you have played Hero World if it’d have been released? And should Activision go back to the idea of a music based MMO game?