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TweakTown News Posts - Page 67

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition: remastered in 4K

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 18, 2017 4:31 am

Can you believe it has been 20 years since the release of the original Age of Empires, and now Microsoft has announced that it is working on Age of Empires Definitive Edition, a remastered version of AoE in 4K.



4K isn't the only thing Microsoft is doing with Age of Empires Definitive Edition, as there will noy only be the original base AoE alongside the "Rise of Rome" expansion pack, but there's enhanced gameplay and narration, 16 civilizations to explore, and 10 campaigns to play through.


Feature wise, Microsoft promises: "Fully remastered with beautifully enhanced graphics that support up to 4K, entirely re-orchestrated soundtrack, brand-new narrative, major gameplay improvements, Xbox Live support for multiplayer and achievements, this definitive edition brings back the original "Age of Empires" and its "Rise of Rome" expansion with 16 civilizations ranging from the Stone Age all the way to Romans".

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Xbox game sales to grow 17% in 2017 due to Xbox One X

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 18, 2017 12:29 am

Xbox One game sales are expected to rise by over 15% in 2017 in part thanks to Microsoft's new high-end Xbox One X system.




Microsoft's latest premium $499 Xbox One X system will catalyze game sales on the Xbox One family of consoles throughout 2017, analyst firm FutureSource Consulting forecasts. According to FutureSource, total Xbox One game sales are expected to rise by 17% to 70 million throughout 2017 with the bulk of game sales happening in Q4 to coincide with the Xbox One X's launch. PS4 game sales are expected to only jump by 3%, however Sony expects to sell 18 million more PS4 units in the fiscal year ending March 2018, bringing the total sales to 68 million units.


The adoption of 4K UHD television sets is also growing, likely sparked by more 4K entertainment options as well as the range of new 4K-enabled video games consoles such as Microsoft's $249 Xbox One S and it's new $399 Xbox One X, and Sony's $399 PlayStation 4 Pro. 4K UHDTVs made up 25% of all televisions sold in 2016, FutureSource reports, and the adoption of 4K TVs is expected to rise 38% in 2017 to account for more than a third of all TVs sold.

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Xbox One X isn't for everyone, says Microsoft

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 17, 2017 11:23 pm

E3 2017 - Xbox division head Phil Spencer says that Microsoft's new $499 Xbox One X isn't for everyone--it's for those experienced players who want the best console hardware available, and want to push 4K gaming and play today's games at the best possible performance.




"The Xbox One X is a console so it's for someone who wants to play video games in a console environment, and it's for someone who wants the best console out there and a premium console experience. It's not for everybody. Just like the Elite controllers--they're not for everybody. Everyone shouldn't spend $150 on a controller," Xbox executive Phil Spencer said in a recent interview with Giant Bomb.


"The Xbox One X is for the gamer who's experienced, whether they're a PC gamer or a current-gen console gamer, and they want the best console experience available."

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Super Mario Odyssey co-op looks like tons of fun

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 17, 2017 8:45 pm

E3 2017 - Nintendo's new Super Mario Odyssey looks to be the most exciting Nintendo Switch exclusive the platform has to offer, and the Japanese games-maker highlights how two players can team up and play within the unique 3D platforming world.



As we previously reported, Super Mario Odyssey will have co-op on the Nintendo Switch. Players can detach both of the Switch's included JoyCon controllers and play co-operative two-player on-the-go in Tabletop Mode, or at home in TV Mode. One player will control Mario while the other controls Cappy, Mario's trusty hat. The two-player dynamic is surprisingly fun and deep: Mario can jump on Cappy to close long distances, and Cappy can protect Mario from enemies as well as collect items.


Nintendo Treehouse showcased some of Super Mario Odyssey's two player co-operative mode in a recent video to highlight some of the more entertaining features. While co-op isn't the star of the show perse, it has a very big effect on gameplay, especially certain in-game areas.

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Sony doubles down on VR commitment

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Jun 17, 2017 6:24 pm

E3 2017 - Sony revitalizes its commitment to its PlayStation VR headset at E3 with a smattering of new virtual reality content.



At it's E3 2017 showcase, Sony revealed more PlayStation VR games than it did new PS4 titles, sending a clear signal: Sony Interactive Entertainment isn't giving up on its console-powered VR infrastructure. Since it's launch in October 2016, Sony's PlayStation VR headset has sold 1 million units to date. While that might seem an impressive number, the $399 premium VR HMD's attach rate is quite small: the PlayStation VR has only penetrated 1.67% of the PlayStation 4's massive 60 million console install base.


To attract more PS4 users to adopt PlayStation VR, the console-maker is investing into more games to fill out the headset's catalog of titles with a number of high-profile exclusives and ports. The principal PSVR exclusive is Bethseda's new Skyrim VR, which brings 2011's award-winning RPG The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim into virtual reality for the first time. Sony announced a total of 12 new PlayStation VR games at the show and on its YouTube channel.


Outside of the newly announced Shadow of the Colossus HD remake and Life is Strange: Before the Storm, Sony didn't actually show off any new full games for the PS4. The console-maker showcased multi-platform third-party partnered titles like Call of Duty: WWII, Destiny 2, Monster Hunter World, and Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite. In fact, Sony showed more new PlayStation VR games than it did new PlayStation 4 games, sending a clear message that the platform is far from being abandoned.

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Microsoft is resurrecting old-school Xbox

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 17, 2017 12:23 am

E3 2017 - Microsoft is keen on resurrecting the old-school 2001 Xbox using its newest generation of Xbox One consoles.




Microsoft has very successfully breathed new life into last-generation's Xbox 360 platform with its extensive backwards compatibility program, ensuring about 380 older last-gen games are playable on the newer Xbox One consoles. Now Redmond is going even farther by bringing 2001 "OG" Xbox games onto Xbox One, ushering in a surprising endeavor to reinvigorate the console brand from its roots.


At E3 2017, Xbox division head Phil Spencer officially confirmed that original 2001 Xbox games are coming to Xbox One backward compatibility. To date only two games have been announced including Crimson Skies and Fusion Frenzy, but we have a strong feeling that the classic system-seller Halo: Combat Evolved will make it over and soon everyone will be able to recreate those beloved old Halo LAN memories.

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Assassin's Creed: Origins microtransactions likely

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 16, 2017 11:34 pm

E3 2017 - Like all of Ubisoft's new games, the publisher's new massive ancient Egypt-based Assassin's Creed: Origins will be based around live services to monetize the game and ensure a long tail for revenues.




Ubisoft is no stranger to microtransactions. The publisher has dramatically shifted towards digital online content with games like For Honor, Rainbow Six: Siege, The Division and Ghost Recon: Wildlands, which have all significantly boosted PRI (player recurring revenue) spend across the board. In fact, PRI spend on microtransactions and add-on content made up 17% of Ubisoft's total revenue in 2016, or $273.7 million. By 2020, Ubisoft expects PRI to make up a whopping 25% of total yearly revenues, or $584.1 million. That's a 113% increase in PRI from fiscal year 2017 to fiscal year 2020.


This forecast frames key insights for FY2018 releases like Assassin's Creed: Origins and Far Cry 5, both of which should be monetized in key ways to facilitate substantial PRI growth. Today we'll be focusing on Assassin's Creed: Origins--Far Cry 5 will come at another time. Ubisoft Montreal game director Ashraf Ismail has confirmed that Assassin's Creed: Origins wont' have an online multiplayer mode, but will instead feature online features that will enhance the player experience. This is prime lingo for microtransactions.

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Bungie explains why Destiny 2 runs at 30FPS on consoles

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 16, 2017 10:22 pm

E3 2017 - Bungie says that Sony didn't force 30FPS parity between Xbox One X and PS4 console performance in Destiny 2.




Just yesterday Destiny 2 dev Luke Smith told WCCFTech that Bungie is "aiming to deliver the same experience on all platforms, and so far, there are no specific enhancements planned for Xbox One X." This led many to believe Bungie was simply holding back and forcing the Xbox One X to run the same as the PS4 Pro because of the exclusive marketing deal it signed with Sony. Microsoft's new $499 Xbox One X console features beefier hardware than the PS4 Pro, including a 6TFLOP GPU, a 2.73GHz customized Jaguar CPU, and 12GB of GDDR5 RAM clocked at 326GB/sec--all of which should ideally be tapped to deliver higher graphic fidelity and frame rates then Sony's $399 PS4 Pro box.


Now Destiny 2 Project Lead Mark Noseworthy steps in to clear things up and explains why Destiny 2 runs at 30FPS on consoles, and confirms the team is indeed investigating 4K enhancements on Xbox One X. "We would never hold back game performance on a platform to appease a partner. No partners asked us to either," the Bungie dev said on Twitter. "We optimize for each platform's tech to deliver the best social action game experience we can. Period. All consoles will run at 30fps to deliver D2's AI counts, environment sizes, and # of players. They are all CPU-bound."


We are currently evaluating 4K for Xbox One X. It launches after D2 and so we are focused on the launch consoles right now.

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Bethesda: we want to leave free mods the way they are

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 16, 2017 9:23 pm

E3 2017 - Bethesda exec Pete Hines says premium Creation Club content will live alongside free mods, and the company has no plans to disrupt or shake-up the free modding market on PS4, Xbox One or PC.




Bethesda's new Creation Club program might sound an awful lot like paid mods, but it's actually not. Creation Club content does resemble mods in terms of being add-on content that ranges from weapons and armor to new quests and even new world areas, but it isn't free. Users will have to pay real-world money to unlock credits to buy content. However, payment ensures higher quality--the content is highly regulated and submissions are put through Q&A testing and alpha and beta phases. Bethesda is treating all Creation Club content as they would official DLC released by its studios, and that's because it actually is: Bethesda will be making Creation Club content alongside external third-party mod-makers, but only a select few that passes the company's high standards of quality. The Creation Club gives mod-makers a means to earn money in a stabilized environment, and incentivizes Bethesda to offer a slew of post-release content in micro bite-sizes.


The modding community is worried, however, and gamers still remember the paid mod fiasco on Steam. Pete Hines, Bethesda's Vice President of PR and Marketing, says that Bethesda isn't going to thwart free mods. Free mods will continue alongside Creation Club on Xbox One, PS4 and PC, and paying for content on the new storefront is entirely optional.


"We want to continue to make and do stuff for Skyrim and Fallout 4, and we want to create an ecosystem that works across both games, but we want to leave mods the way that they are," Hines said in a recent interview with Gamespot.

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Nintendo stocks surge following E3 2017

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 16, 2017 8:26 pm

E3 2017 - Nintendo's high-profile E3 2017 showcase has had a strong effect on its stock, sending its shares to their highest point in years.




Shares of Japanese console-maker Nintendo have risen once again on the back of a successful games reveal stream, this time centered around its new Switch console-handheld hybrid.


Nintendo company shares are now at their highest point since 2008 thanks to the strong community buzz driven by a slew of heavy-hitters like a new mainline Pokemon RPG for the Switch, Fire Emblem Warriors, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, a new Kirby and Yoshi game, the massively anticipated Mario Odyssey, and the big surprise of Metroid Prime 4.

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