12.12.2017

Justice League Superheroes: A Chinese Mobile RPG Video Game Similar to DC Unchained

     While many of us have been eagerly awaiting DC Comics' mobile game version of Marvel's Future Fight, DC Unchained, we received the news that its western release would be pushed back into 2018 from the game's Korean developer FourThirtyThree, Inc (4:33 Creative Labs).  Coincidentally, DC Comics has also licensed and soft-launched an extremely similar game to the Chinese market through Longtu games called Justice League: Superheroes in earlier this year in April.


     The game features a current total of 20 heroes obtained through either a "gacha" system or slowly collecting pieces to unlock a hero.  Each individual hero falls into a paper-rock-scissors type set of classification- Assassin, Support, Warrior, or Mage- breaking down into the traditional roles of tank, rogue, healer, and so on.
     As of now, there's roughly 10 different game modes to keep players occupied and grinding away including a traditional story mode, world boss mode, bounty quests, and PvP modes.

     While Justice League Superheroes does not have the promise of a western release, there's always a small possibility that it could happen, though the chances might be slimmer due to DC Unchained coming here and creating the problem of the two games competing between each other.

     Justice League Superheroes [ Google Play ] [ Longtu's Official Game Site ]

     Source [ MMO Culture ]

12.08.2017

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW with Slaughter 2 Developer Ray Spark

     I've been a fan of Slaughter since it first arrived on mobile, and I later raved about it in my review over on Droidgamers.  Then I caught wind of a sequel being planned and my excitement grew.  With each new trailer I got more and more excited- then Slaughter 2: Prison Assault hit the market and I've been absolutely infatuated with it.


     Now I've been lucky enough to snag an interview with the developer Ray Spark, click below to read.

12.06.2017

SEGA Forever: Streets of Rage has Arrived!

     Sega has been slowly porting some of their greatest games to the mobile markets as free-to-play titles under the SEGA Forever moniker, and they are getting better with each new addition.  We've already received an entire library of classics such as Altered Beast, Ristar, Sonic the Hedgehog, Kid Chameleon, Beyond Oasis, The Revenge of Shinobi, Golden Axe, and Phantasy Star 2- but today marks the release of the beat 'em up Streets of Rage.


     Following the 1980's tradition of cops taking to the streets to clean up their city:
     Three cops, a city on the edge, and a crime lord known only as Mr. X – welcome to one of the all-time SEGA greats. Arm yourself with knives, bottles, and drainpipes and battle through eight thug-infested urban environments to bring order to the city. Relentless, explosive, and addictive as hell – Streets of Rage is the grand-daddy of beat-‘em-ups!
     As with all the Sega Forever titles the game is a free-to-play with ads and an IAP to make ads disappear.  The game features both HID & MFi compatible controller support, local Wi-Fi multiplayer capability, and the standard competitive leaderboards. 

     In my replay and review of I said:
     I've read that this was supposed to be a Final Fight killer, and while they didn't do that, they created one hell of a game.  All around decent and entertaining.  And after replaying there are two things I never noticed back then- the first is that there is actually a time limit for each level's individual section of enemies, and multiple endings.  There are two different endings depending on if there are 2 players and one or both agree to "join" Mr. X.
     What we've got here is great music, good graphics, and tight controls in a city in turmoil.  When boiled down Streets of Rage's best feature is that it spawned sequels, one of which stands as one of the greatest beat-'em-ups in history.  If you like the series it's a fun play, if not- try Streets of Rage 2- it's a lasting gem that has few rivals.
     Overall the Sega Forever games have been fairly great ports with one glaring issue across the board with their touchscreen input controls being clunky and troublesome.  Other than that they are all just as fun as ever.  In Streets of Rage's case, we can hope they've either remedied the situation, or will be, on the way to bringing us its sequel somewhere down the line- as I've said many times before Streets of Rage 2 is simply one of the greatest games ever created.

     Streets of Rage on [ Google Play ] [ iOS ]

     SEGA's Mobile Games on [ Google Play ] [ iOS ]

     Related posts [ Sega ]

Dark Souls Remastered: Might Actually be Happening (Confirmed by Original Reporter)

[ UPDATE ] Apparently there's been some more confirmations to Original Tweet (& Deleted link), and Sellers also noted that two games were specifically the Dark Souls Remaster and Soul Calibur 6- as well as the fact they are NOT exclusives to the Switch.

     Dark Souls as a series might be over, but many fans (including myself) have been begging for a remastered version of the original (as well as one for Demon's Souls) for a very long time over on Reddit and elsewhere.
     Over the last few months there have been rumors circulating that one indeed may be on the way, and recently we got news of the Demon's Souls servers finally closing down after almost a decade.  Then yesterday Nintendo Switch Network writer Marcus Sellers accidentally revealed some juicy news.


     In a tweet he posted, he let it slip that at a December 15th Bandai-Namco event that "5 unannounced games would be shown off." In addition Nintendo would be featured heavily.
     What makes this even better is he replied to another person's tweet revealing the news of the Dark Souls Remaster- which has since been deleted, but thanks to the ever vigilant internet dwellers, it was screen-capped and saved.

     The tweet mentioned the fact that the 2011 game re-released in Remastered form would be coming to not only the Playstation 4 and Xbox One, but the Nintendo Switch as well.  If Seller's tweet is true, then all of us Souls fans can once again return to Lordran in all of its glory and splendor with a completely new and beautiful journey into darkness.*

     I'm sure many are hoping to also hear an official announcement of a Bloodborne sequel (personally if they do, I hope it's in a far futuristic setting like a Dead Space game), some Armored Core news, and the like, but for me- a Dark Souls Remaster is exactly the news I've been waiting for.  Improved graphics, a more balanced PvP connectivity, and better controls would be a godsend for the game.  When I say better controls- I do NOT mean the infinite rolling of the 3rd game, just a smoother flow and slightly less clunky as the methodical combat of the first game is still unmatched in its perfection.  This remaster could revitalize the entire Souls community.

     Related posts [ Dark Souls ]

     Source [ Seasoned Gaming ] via [ ComicBook ] & [ Reddit ]

*My Ps3 trophies from when DS1 first arrived. Such great memories.

11.22.2017

Marvel Heroes: BLACK FRIDAY Will Be the End, Gazillion Fires Everyone, Shutting Game Down in Two Days

     Only five short days after the announcement that Gazillion was closing its doors and Marvel Heroes would be no more as of December 31st, we've received even worse news.  In a spectacularly awful move, Gazillion has fired all of their hardworking staff the day before Thanksgiving via an internal email to their employees.  What makes this so much more awful is the fact that the firing of the employees leaves them without severance, PTO payouts, and no insurance according to Andrew Hair, who before today was a Gazillion gameplay engineer, and confirmed by one of Gaz's former game designers- Brian "Asros" Waggoner.


     It's been leaked from ex-developer Winterthur (@Zurick on Discord) that the Marvel Heroes (Marvel Heroes Omega) will NOT be playable until December 31st, but will in fact end in a mere 2 days (on November 24th) making it a true Black Friday- and in a feat of villainy Gazillion will be giving us the true Omega Update as the game vanishes from our lives.
     While my long-standing and deep appreciation for Marvel Heroes is extremely disappointed in its far too swift server shutdown, my heart and condolences go out to all the awesome Gazillion employees that kept us happily entertained for the last 4 years both in game and on the official forums- they were the real heroes in this, and they have a tough time ahead after CEO Dave Dohrmann's (he of the inappropriate sexual conduct scandals, harassment, and accusations) email destroyed their Holiday season.  It's sad to say, but it looks like instead of taking responsibility, Dohrmann would rather ruin the lives of everyone around him- and tanking any hope of Gaz reaping the rewards of all the great things that were on the horizon for the game.

     There is a very little hope left for the game to be salvaged, though there IS some hope still, there's a petition for Marvel and Disney to save the game, (and on twitter) perhaps under different leadership it could be bought up and given new life, perhaps it will be forgotten and ignored by The House of Mouse- either way, try to show your support for the devs that worked tirelessly for these last few years in whatever endeavors they choose to pursue in the future.  Thank you for all the great memories.

     Sources [ Massively OP ] via [ Reddit ]

11.20.2017

Marvel Strike Force: A NEW Mobile Marvel RPG Coming in 2018

     After the sad news of the epic MMO Marvel Heroes Omega being shut down on December 31st, Marvel Entertainment has announced a new mobile game arriving in 2018.  The new game is a free-to-play (with IAPs of course) mobile role-playing game featuring squad-based action being developed by FoxNext Games's Aftershock Studio (this will be their first game).


     The story follows Earth's mightiest heroes assembling against a long-forgotten Kree Eternal named Ultimus, who has become a general in the Kree Empire.  Being an Eternal he shares the same power source as Thanos, and as a Kree he follows warriors such as the religious Kree zealot Ronan The Accuser, and he has realized that Earth is a threat to the the existence of the Kree empire and he has come up with a plane to deal with it.  With his sights set on Earth, Ultimus' goal is to conquer not just Earth, but by every Earth in every dimension by using his technology to controls the minds of all the heroes.

    Aaron Loeb, FoxNext Games President of Studios, has said they are trying to liken the game to fantasy sports teams, where players can draft from a large cast of famous Marvel characters, ranging from Captain America and Doctor Strange to Guardians of the Galaxy like Drax or Rocket Raccoon, or even some of the Defenders like Daredevil and Luke Cage.

    The Creative Director for FoxNext Games, Jason Bender, has described the game's tactical range and gameplay as:
"There is immense depth of strategy across characters and squads, which typically have 5 characters on the field at a time. Players will build a force of around 70 characters, with even more to be revealed! 
Every character has to collect a variety of gear in order to grow stronger, and they have 3 to 4 unique abilities each. As abilities improve, new mechanics will unlock and reveal new tactical options. For example, Daredevil might start out attacking a single target at a time, but will quickly grow to chain his martial arts maneuvers to multiple enemies in a single attack." 
     The game will also launch with at least one player-to-player mode- being a highly competitive, but friendly arena allowing players to test their mettle against each other and earn rewards as they climb the ladder to the top- as well as the promise of a wide variety of more PvP modes planned.  In addition there will be alliances to aid in strengthening teams and collecting new gear and upgrades.

     It should be noted that Marvel Strike Force clearly resembles Marvel Avengers Alliance 1 & 2, both of which were shut down in September 2016, and definitely appears similar to another current Disney owned property's product- Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes, and by the sounds of it, ` will also rely on the gacha system of gathering characters and building them up, which is something I truly loathe.  I've got to admit, it looks like a better game than Contest of Champions, (Strike Force's art style is actually extremely similar to C.o.C.'s) but nowhere near as fun as the full 3rd person action of Future Fight.

     Marvel Strike Force [ Pre-Register Now ] and it will debut in 2018.

     Related Posts [ Future Fight ]

     Sources [ Marvel News ] [ Variety ]

11.17.2017

THQ Nordic Releases Titan Quest: Ragnarok: A Whole NEW Expansion Pack

     In a completely surprising move, THQ Nordic has not just announced, but released a brand new expansion to the action-adventure RPG classic game Titan Quest today called Ragnarok!


     The last new expansion for the game came out just over a decade ago with March 2007's release of Titan Quest: Immortal Throne.  Now, Titan Quest's new fifth act, Ragnarok, brings our heroes into the cold and harsh lands of northern Europe, from the dark forests of Germany all the way to Asgard.  We'll encounter the Celts, Northmen, and even the Asgardian gods themselves in the largest act so far.  The glorious world of antiquity can be explored

     Players will have a plethora of new quests to complete featuring new weapons and gear, new enemies and bosses, a new 10th mastery, and even the most important cold-weather ability- wearing pants!
SOME KEY FEATURES:
Become a Runemaster, a magical warrior fighting with both, spells and weapons.
Combine newly learned with existing masteries for a total of 45 combinations.
Reach level 85 and maximize your character’s potential.
Find new and powerful gear, from colorful Celtic shields to famous weapons of Germanic legend.
New relics and charms for crafting, and a new option to improve even legendary items.
New thrown weapons strike the balance between range and speed!

IMPROVED CHARACTER CUSTOMIZATION:
A wider variety of regional styles and color dyes.
Finally: wear pants!

TECHNICAL AND QOL IMPROVEMENTS:
New shaders and graphical effects.
Improved ragdoll physics.
Improved UI and combat feedback for total information.
Improved control customization.
Improved modding tools.
     This is certainly a wonderful surprise for fans of Titan Quest.

     Note: the Ragnarok expansion requires Titan Quest: Anniversary Edition to be played.

     Play Titan Quest: Ragnarok via [ Steam ]
          It 's 25% with a current price of $14.99 (regularly $19.99) Offer ends Nov. 24th.

Marvel Heroes Omega: My Thoughts on Disney Officially Shutting it Down

THE OFFICIAL NEWS

     After 4 and a half years of having some serious ups and downs, Marvel Heroes is finally being closed.  Over the last month many of us long time players have been speculating about this possibility on the forums, the first news broke from Kotaku letting them know Disney/Marvel is parting ways with Gazillion.


     As a Marvel representative stated in an email to them:
“We regret to inform our Marvel Heroes fans that we have ended our relationship with Gazillion Entertainment, and that the Marvel Heroes games will be shut down. We would like to sincerely thank the players who joined the Marvel Heroes community, and will provide any further updates as they become available.”
     Later AgentPilot posted an official statement from Gazillion on their forums:
"We’re sad to inform our players and our entire Marvel Heroes family that Marvel Heroes Omega will be shutting down. The Marvel Heroes servers will stay on until Dec 31, 2017, and we’ll be removing real money purchases as soon as possible. Players will be able to play the game entirely for free once this sunset period commences. We will share the exact date things go completely free as soon as we can. 
We’ve had the privilege of entertaining and collaborating with our players for over four years. We’re extremely humbled by that privilege and wanted to get this message out: Thank you. Thank you to our players, our tireless employees, and everyone involved in the life of Marvel Heroes, Marvel Heroes 2015, Marvel Heroes 2016, and Marvel Heroes Omega."
THE PROBLEMS

     Gazillion has been in a very turbulent times ever since David Brevik (of Diablo 2 fame) departed the company in January 2016 (check out these threads, the tone of the forums drastically shifted), and having other Gaz employees like Doomsaw and Ryolnir go was another huge hit- resulting in a quick downhill slide of the game.  Former long-time Gaz Community Agent Fenixion posted his own decision to leave on the forums on Halloween definitely gave us more worries, as well as Agent Vapor's departure.
     Really, the only good to come out of this was the surprise return of former Gaz employee Doomsaw to the forums.  He swung through and found he still had moderator privileges, but they were quickly stripped even with no other Gaz members posting anything.  Since no Gaz employees were doing or saying anything, he voluntarily went and tried to raise hope and bring levity to the forums.
     Much more recently is the highly inappropriate sexual misconduct issues concerning Gazillion's CEO Dave Dohrmann, and the fallout it's having on the rest of the staff and company. [ More references: 1, 2, 3, 4 (at about the 1.5hr mark) ]  And then Gazillion going completely silent shortly after this. [ Great video by DisKingdom about companies (Gaz particularly) going silent. ]  The long awaited and promised Omega patch, along with numerous other things like the costume closet, the Halloween event, and Thor Ragnarok tie-in pack, never arrived for the scheduled Oct. 27th date.

MY THOUGHTS
   
     It's extremely disappointing to hear, but honestly the PC player base had been dwindling from being essentially neglected for the console ports after the "Biggest Update Ever" shit all over the game (the BUE essentially prepped and simplified the game to be ported)- while it made a lot of good starts, it completely ruined the way a great many of the characters could be played, eliminating the vast variety of character play styles and shoe-horned them into essentially only one viable build for each character.
     Gaz pretty much ditched the extremely loyal PC player base for the potential for new console players and it was an absolutely terrible choice.

     I'd previously written that, "It's the only game I've made an effort to play at least a half hour a day for the last year.  It's just amazing and it keeps getting better.  Thank you Gazillion.  Marvel Heroes 2016 is a must play for fans of any Marvel properties."  In all reality, I probably put in a thousand plus hours.  The original launch was a mess, but the game progressively made it amazing by the 2016 iteration, and until the Biggest Update Ever, was easily, without-a-doubt the best Marvel game ever made.  Sadly, after the BUE (and the changes in leadership and direction) the game never got back to what it was and what it could've been.

     It'll be very sad to see this game go, but honestly they could still make a few bucks by compressing what they can and makingthe game able to play on disc or download with private servers.  Sell the game as old games were, a whole item, playable without an internet connection.  Hell, just the Danger Room section itself could be sold (obviously we'd need to be able to keep all the crap we've already unlocked/bought) as a game in itself.  It'd also need to have the Hydra damage bugs toned WAY down, which should've been fixed a year ago.
     Though it makes me wonder if Disney and Marvel will still hold all the programming and assets and whatnot, and if they might bring in a new team to possibly relaunch the game somewhere down the line.
     As for me, I'll probably get a good couple weekends of play in on this, and go back to hyping the only other Marvel game I play every day- Marvel Future Fight.

     My own Marvel Heroes account link [ MrJRB ]

     Related-ish posts [ Future Fight ]

     Sources [ Massively OP & 2, 3 ] [ Kotaku ] [ HiMyNameIsLeo ] [ MMORPG ]

Morphite: Finally Arriving on Android Next Week!

     I've been following and reporting on Morphite since the beginning, nearly a year and a half ago.  Posting on it both here, and over at Droidgamers (1 & 2), and when they announced the release date I was overly excited!  But that excitement was quickly quashed when Crescent Moon Games said that it was only hitting the Nintendo Switch, X Box One, PS4, and Steam in September, then in October for iOS users, and is with the curse of Android gaming, we were going to have to wait a while longer after that.


     Considering it was originally hyped as game for the mobile market, it's been a long, long wait for this glorious game.  If the reviews on all the other systems are any indication, Morphite's arrival on Android will be well worth the wait.  We will finally have a decent combination of Metroid Prime and No Man's Sky in the palms of our droid gaming hands for some action-packed space adventures.

11.10.2017

Slaughter 2: Prison Assault NEW Trailer

     The first Slaughter game was a genuine surprise for mobile gamers.  It came out of nowhere from creator/developer Ray Spark (aka Venomized Art).  He brought us a truly sublime 3rd person shooter for mobile.  I've said over and over that Slaughter had great controls, tons of action, loads of fun, and even some oddball Borderlands-esque humor all crammed into our pocket.
     Then I found out he announced a sequel and was downright ecstatic, and with each new teaser my excitement grew.  Now, as we inch ever closer towards launch day, we've received yet another great new trailer showcasing some awesome footage featuring new locations, hints of the story, and even a peek at some of the improved combat- and it certainly looks amazing


     Where the first game put players in the shoes of a mercenary named Russel fleeing a town populated with hordes of madmen, the sequel places you on the opposite side of things and into the role of one of the Special Forces soldiers that crossed paths with Russel.  It has also been confirmed that Slaughter 2 will at some point cross-over in terms of story with the first game.

     Spark has said the game will have better graphics, animations, and a bunch of new weapons and enemies.  Slaughter 2: Prison Assault is set to be about twice the length of its predecessor in terms of gameplay, along with a bunch of additional trivia, texts, and in game secrets to uncover! 

     Slaughter 2: Prison Assault will be available "SOOOOOOOON!"*

     The first Slaughter is currently available for $.99 on [ Google Play ] [ iOS ]

*This new trailer was listed as being for a Google Play technical preview.