Star Wars Battlefront’s launch has been quite successful, compared to other Star Wars game launches. In the UK, it was the biggest Star Wars game launch, ever, according to Chart-Track, though this is only based on physical sales, not digital downloads, so it doesn’t really tell us much about how it’s doing on PC.
For that, we can look at swbstats.com. These aren’t official numbers from EA, so should be taken with a pinch of salt, but the numbers aren’t looking great. There are less people playing Star Wars Battlefront than Ark: Survival Evolved, an Early Access game.
According to swbstats.com, PS4 is the dominant platform, followed by Xbox One and then PC. The 24 hour peak figure is a surprisingly low 39,622 players, compared to Ark’s 41,660. If Battlefront was on Steam, this would still put it in the top 10 in terms of concurrent player count, however. But for a highly anticipated triple-A launch from a major FPS studio, it still seems a little low. Especially since the game is still so new.
As more players burn out or get everything there is to unlock, it’s likely that this number will only drop. So why hasn’t it made as much of a splash as EA and DICE likely hoped for? The PC port was pretty good, as we said in our Star Wars Battlefront PC port review, so it’s not the quality of the PC version.
DICE's Star Wars Battlefront is breaking records. Publisher Electronic Arts announced today that the sci-fi shooter has become the "largest digital launch" in the company's history. It's also the "biggest launch" of any new Star Wars game ever released, the company said, though no specific data points were shared.
In a blog post, EA Studios executive Patrick Soderlund also reveals that players can look forward to "lots of new content" coming to Battlefront in the coming months. One of the biggest critiques of the game so far is that some feel the game doesn't have enough content.
The first of Battlefront's post-launch DLC is a free Force Awakens-inspired expansion called The Battle of Jakku, which starts to roll out on December 1 for people who preordered. Everyone else gets it on December 8, also as a free download.
Soderlund also teased that, in addition to all the new maps and items coming to the game through Battlefront's $50 DLC pass, players can also expect a number of free updates.
"We will be adding more of what you love about the game, like new maps and Star Cards, for free in the coming months, in addition to all of the content we have coming with Season Pass," he said. "We'll have more to share soon."
This statement from EA comes after big-time retailer GameStop said Battlefront underperformed. "We're not going to quantify it in terms of actual numbers, but we had high expectations that diminished somewhat as it got closer and it failed to hit those lowered expectations," management said on Monday.
343 Industries has joined forces with Sandboxr to bring your Spartan to life. With the click of a button, we’ll send your Spartan to Sandboxr where you can choose from a variety of poses and three size options. Then a 3D Print of your personal Spartan will be on its way!
Ready to bring your Spartan into the real world with a 3D Print? Log in to your Xbox Live account on Halo Waypoint, hop over to your profile, and customize your Spartan to show off your personality. You’ll have access to all the amazing armor choices that you’ve unlocked in Halo 5: Guardians so make sure to open all your REQ packs before you start. Once you have customized your Spartan to perfection, click the 3D Print button and you’ll be able to complete your order at Sandboxr.
Would be cool if more games, especially MMOs, allowed this.
This has been a phenomenal year for The Witcher! Here are a couple words from Konrad Tomaszkiewicz our Game Director:
“This year was really epic for the entire crew behind The Witcher. We launched Wild Hunt, the RPG we’ve been working o77n for so long, then we’ve gone above and beyond to give gamers as many free DLC as we could, and then released Hearts of Stone, which - judging from player feedback - took the game even further. And we innovated all along the way -- if you compare Wild Hunt to our previous game, almost every element was improved or changed. Now we’re working on Blood and Wine, the final expansion for Wild Hunt which we will launch in 2016. To thank everyone for being with us this whole time, we’ve prepared something special -- enjoy the Epic Trailer!”
The next series of add-ons for Batman™: Arkham Knight, including the free 2016 Batman v Superman Batmobile Pack, will be available beginning today for fans who have purchased the Batman: Arkham Knight Season Pass for the PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One, and PC, and are connected to the Internet. The content can also be purchased separately beginning today on the PlayStation®Network, Xbox LIVE online entertainment network from Microsoft and STEAM.
Season Pass holders receive early access to the 2016 Batman v. Superman Batmobile Pack, which includes the Batsuit and Batmobile from the highly anticipated Warner Bros. Pictures film “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” Also available today are two new Arkham Episodes, which give players the ability to control two of Gotham City’s most well-known characters, Catwoman and Robin. Catwoman’s Revenge takes place after the events of Batman: Arkham Knight and puts players under the cover of darkness as they seek revenge on the Riddler. Flip of a Coin lets players take control of Robin as he looks to take down Two- Face’s lucrative money laundering operation. Both Arkham Episodes also include two AR challenge maps.
Click on the headline for more details and the trailer.
Entertainment Weekly is reporting that actor Kevin Bacon will return to the town of Perfection in a Tremors TV series.
Earth-shaking reboot news!
There’s a TV series in the works reviving the sci-fi franchise Tremors — and original star Kevin Bacon is back on board as an actor and executive producer.
Universal Cable Productions and Blumhouse Productions are developing a show based on the 1990 cult favorite about giant killer worms, a movie that spawned four direct-to-video sequels. There was a previous TV version, as well (the 13-episode Tremors: The Series that aired on SciFi Channel in 2003).
Andrew Miller (The Secret Circle) has been tapped to write the adaptation.
Bacon’s involvement is particularly cool as the actor is returning to the franchise after 25 years. Bacon, who recently starred in Fox’s The Following, only appeared in the original Tremors (and doubtless turned down ample opportunities to be involved with the sequels). Bacon will reprise his character Valentine McKee and the setting will return to the fictional Nevada desert town of Perfection.
Shakedown Hawaii: Vblank’s New Open World Adventure
It’s been three years since Retro City Rampage was released, but a new game from Vblank Entertainment is finally on its way for PS4 and PS Vita! Check out the trailer for a sneak peek.
Shakedown Hawaii brings the Vblank open world universe into the 16-bit era, powered up with destructible environments and an arsenal of supercharged weapons. Taking place some thirty years after the events of Retro City Rampage, the game follows The Player as he comes out of early retirement to rebuild his neglected corporate empire.
What a tease! I know that’s not much to go on, but much more will be revealed next-next weekend, as Shakedown Hawaii makes its first playable debut at PlayStation Experience December 5-6th.
Now that République is on PS4, players can finally take full control of Hope, a young woman held captive inside Metamorphosis, a shadowy totalitarian state ruled by the omnipresent Overseer. By hacking into this secret nation's elaborate surveillance network, players and Hope begin a treacherous and thrilling journey to freedom.
Seattle-based Camouflaj developed the game and has received numerous awards including “Excellence in Storytelling” from the International Mobile Gaming Awards (IMGA). With a 87 percent Steam user rating, République’s reviews have been positive.
Although it was previously limited to PC and mobile, now PS4™ players can look forward to experiencing the entire season—including the fifth and final episode—in one complete package.
Take a Peek into Stories: The Path of Destinies with a New Trailer
Spearhead Games has released a new trailer for Stories: The Path of Destinies, an action RPG about a sword-wielding fox who’s gotten himself into a bit of trouble. Reynardo reluctantly joined a losing battle against the mad Emperor and he quickly became the rebellion’s last hope. Can he come up with a plan that won’t blow up in his face, for a change?
In Stories, each choice you make takes Reynardo into a unique narrative. From tongue-in-cheek takes on heroic adventures to dark, Lovecraftian scenes, Stories’ repertoire is as diverse as it is action-packed. But Reynardo’s fateful decisions won’t always be easy: Sometimes retrieving a weapon lost at the beginning of time means sacrificing the life of an old friend.
If he has any hope to save the realm, Reynardo must journey across Boreas, a world of floating islands with locales ranging from half-buried desert ruins to vertiginous, ice-topped mountains. And with the Emperor’s troops intent on stopping him at every turn, Reynardo is sure to make use of his Sword Fu technique, a fluid, offense-oriented combat style that players can customize to suit their preferences.
With more than a few ways to screw up, can Reynardo choose the path that will lead him to victory?
In December on Xbox One, we kick things off with epic action-role-playing game The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing. There’s plenty of gameplay at your fingertips from the get-go here, combining combat, character development, a deep story, and plenty of deadly action in a single package. Then we move on to Thief, the blockbuster reboot of the beloved action-stealth series – and it challenges your mind as much as your nerves as you take on tough traps and merciless guards.
On Xbox 360 and Xbox One with Backward Compatibility, Games with Gold offers up CastleStorm to start the holiday season. A tower defense title with a twist, CastleStorm’s colorful graphics and charming aesthetic will keep any player engaged for hours on end. And when those hours are finished, Xbox 360 gamers still get another free title in Sacred 3, an exciting hack-and-slash medieval fantasy title with four-player cooperative modes both online and off – so you can, you know, chop bad guys up with your friends. And as an extra gift for the holidays Gold members can get Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising free the second half of the month. What’s not to like!
As usual, all games are available only for a limited time, as part of the ongoing Games with Gold program – so don’t let the holiday festivities slow you down. Get playing!
Your guns will continue to fire with exactly the standard 100% gory satisfaction guaranteed, with no effect to your combat statistics OR performance. AND the proceeds will enable us to send you to new and ever-more exotic locations in which to exterminate the Zed menace.
No longer will you have that cold aching thought in the back of your mind - ‘what if...’ What if you had only shown Hans the spirit of the British Monarchy with a grenade launcher decaled as a shark? Perhaps that Fleshpound, his chest glowing oh-so-bright red, would balk at the sight of your cyber-red Katana? These are the questions you need answers to and you’ll find them at The Trading Floor!
That's fair. Key point is that there are no stat changes, à la Payday 2.
GameStop today reported that new software sales were down by 9.3 percent, a downturn that was attributed to a tough comparison to last year when Destiny and Super Smash Bros. came to market. But in an earnings call this morning, GameStop executives shared more insight into why new game sales came up short.
High-profile new releases like Halo 5: Guardians and Assassin's Creed Syndicate underperformed during the quarter ended October 31, GameStop CEO Paul Raines told investors and analysts. Star Wars Battlefront launched on November 17, outside of that reporting period, but sales of this game, too, came in below what the company had modeled, GameStop president Tony Bartel added.
Bartel went on to say that some in the industry believe Halo 5's digital sales--for which GameStop does not earn a penny--were significantly higher, on a percentage basis, than past entries in the series. This line of thinking comes from a discrepancy between Microsoft's reported $400 million in Halo 5 sales and an NPD report Bartel cited that said Halo 5 only generated $119 million.
The variance to NPD is reconciled, Bartel said, by the fact that NPD only reports US sales, as well as a broader inclusion of SKUs beyond those tracked by NPD, two additional days of sales in Microsoft's announcement versus NPD's reporting period, and sales that were reported by publishers but not retailers.
Bartel went on to say there is no reason to believe Halo 5's digital sales were higher than what they were modeling, based on conversations with Microsoft. "We are in constant discussions with all publishers and platform-holders and we believe that all major full-game titles launched in this quarter were in line with previously announced digital download levels," he said.
"We are in full understanding and full belief that there is no game that was launched this quarter that was materially above a normal digital percent at launch."
The areas where we encountered slowdown are curious. On PS4, Battlefront manages to hold a very steady level of performance during even the largest of battles online. The occasional dips show up once in a while, but overall, it's very smooth. That said, in testing the single-player portions of the game, we actually ran across a couple instances where slowdown consistently appeared leading to dips into the mid-40s at the absolute lowest. This is not representative of general performance, however.
On Xbox One, performance slips somewhat lower at times during the largest of battles. During an average play session, the experience still comes close to achieving its objective, but certain areas trigger dips under 60fps. It's not as smooth overall as PlayStation 4, but for a large scale multiplayer title, the performance is still a huge improvement over Battlefield 4. As for the PC, well our main test machine here was equipped with a GTX 780 and a Core i5 3570K overclocked to 4.5GHz. We were able to achieve a very stable 60fps at 1080p on our system using ultra settings for everything except shadows, which we dialled back to medium.
In the future, where the Asteroid Belt has been colonized, the investigation into the mysterious disappearance of a young heiress sets off a series of events that will change humanity. 2 night premiere of The Expanse, December 14th on Syfy.
It's been ten years since Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. It was 15 years between Episode VI and Episode I. How long will it be between The Force Awakens and the next Star Wars movie, Rogue One? Just one year. How about the one after that? Also one year. In fact, Disney plans on releasing a Star Wars movie every year for... well, as long as people keep buying tickets for them.
"If the people at the Walt Disney Company, which bought Lucasfilm for $4 billion in 2012, have anything to say about it, the past four decades of Star Wars are merely prologue," writer Adam Rogers wrote in a feature on Wired magazine. "They are making more. A lot more."
"A lot more" to the tune of one every year for as long as they can. In fact, Rogers thinks that Disney will milk Star Wars so hard, and for so long, that if you were alive when A New Hope launched back in the 70s, you'll probably be dead by the time they stop making new ones.
Reportedly, the company plans on achieving this gargantuan level of production by branching out Star Wars films Marvel Universe-style, with lots of stand-alone films focusing on different aspects of the universe. Indeed, next year's Rogue One is exactly that.
Are you planning on building a Game Room? Are you looking for suggestions on storage and setup? Metal Jesus walks you through the solutions he has discovered including bookshelves, entertainment centers, storage bins, dust covers and even sexy colored LED lighting!
This video is in response to the TONS of questions I get about this topic every single week. Hopefully it gives people some new ideas about their game rooms!
Stephen Totilo from Kotaku wrote an article complaining about being blacklisted by publishers Bethesda and Ubisoft. In a YouTube video Harmful Opinion points out that Mr. Totilo and company do little of value for gamers when they do have early access to products from publishers. Harmful Opinion also points out that the article is a case of what you can do for Kotaku, not what Kotaku can do for you.
Click on the headline to watch Harmful Opinion's video on the matter.
In a refreshing bit of straight talk, Interceptor Entertainment has announced that Bombshell has been delayed until January 29, 2016 to fix the bugs.
Over the last several weeks, we’ve been exhaustively testing Bombshell to get it ready for ship. Unfortunately, and honestly, the game isn’t entirely bug free at this point. Our first instinct was to just get this puppy out-the-door, and that we could fix the remaining issues with a quick patch after launch. But within ten seconds we realized that’s no way to treat paying fans of our games.
As painful as this is to say, we’ve made the command decision to move our release date out a bit. This will give us the time to polish the game that we know you all deserve, and the team here is raring to put in the hours necessary and get sh*t done! Bombshell will release on Windows PC on both Steam and GOG.com on January 29, 2016. We’ll be offering two packages - the Standard Edition for $34.99 USD, and a Digital Deluxe Edition for $39.99 USD.
As I posted yesterday, the new Marvel/Netflix series Jessica Jones is now available for your weekend binging pleasure. I'm up to Episode 12 and I'm still waiting for something to happen.
The series centers around Hero/Private Investigator Jessica Jones, who is suffering from trauma after being turned into a girl-toy by villain Kilgrave for several months. Jones escapes from Kilgrave when his powers pretty much just wear off for no reason and she walks away.
Now she spends her days drinking and doing the female version of the noir detective thing while using her super strength to occasionally open a locked door. Not kidding. For the most part in the series she gets her butt kicked by everyone she meets, including getting knocked out by a mousy neighbor girl with a 2x4 as a weapon. She can apparently also jump really high.
As villains do, Kilgrave has become Jones obsessed and follows her around like a lovesick puppy, trying to convince her to come back and be his girl-toy again of her own free will, while leaving a pile of dead bodies in his wake and making Jessica's life miserable.
There is only one villain in the entire show and they waste all 13 episodes trying to catch a bad guy that she defeated in the comic books by wearing earplugs. (Not kidding again.)
This isn't Daredevil. The acting is pretty good and the characters are enjoyable to watch, they just never do much with them. The same story could have been told in about 4 episodes and then moved onto a more interesting villain later. Doctor Who alumnus David Tennant turns in a slimy performance as Kilgrave, who moves quickly from arrogant to pathetic at a moments notice to manipulate those around him.
He makes the series worth watching. Luke Cage also makes an appearance in a few episodes and watching him fight is a lot of fun. He would have been a lot better choice for the lead than a little-known hero from an older Marvel mini-series.
Toward the end, the series does have a few racy moments, some side-boob and a little gore. It's a bit more mature than Daredevil, but nothing you haven't seen on The Walking Dead.
Eurogamer and Shacknews have some details on the upcoming Autumn and Winter sales on Steam.
Valve will not run any flash or daily deals during its Steam autumn or winter sales, Eurogamer can confirm.
Steam's autumn sale will run from next Wednesday, 25th November at 6pm UK time until Tuesday, 1st December at 6pm UK time.
Then, Steam's winter sale will run from 22nd December at 6pm UK time until 4th January 2016, once again at 6pm UK time.
Those dates come from Shacknews, which also suggested that games would get just one sale price for the duration of each event.
Eurogamer can now confirm this, after receiving the notice of this change that Valve sent out to Steam developers and publishers today.
"We'll still be highlighting your top games on the front page for 24-48 hour spans, but those products will stay at their most competitive discount, before and after being featured," Valve wrote.
"It's not a major change, but it does make the sale a lot more valuable for customers, and it allows us to build sale features that recommend your product all sale long, instead of just during its front page feature.
"For a brand new release, if you can't get approval for your best discount for the full length of the sale, that's OK and we can work on a plan for that game. But the vast majority of your catalog should be running its best discount for the duration of the sale."
Game Informer is reporting that Sony is working on PlayStation 2 emulation for the PlayStation 4.
Update: Sony isn't ready to talk about its PS2 game emulation, but it is working on it.
Sony sent us this official comment: "We are working on utilizing PS2 emulation technology to bring PS2 games forward to the current generation. We have nothing further to comment at this point in time."
Original Story: The Star Wars Battlefront PS4 hardware bundle launched a few days ago, giving players a Darth Vader-emblazoned console, a specially colored controller, and a copy of the game. It also included a voucher to download several older Star Wars games, perhaps inadvertently opening a window to Sony’s future emulation plans.
Digital Foundry noticed that several of those retro games – Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter, Star Wars: Racer Revenge, Star Wars: Bounty Hunter – are running via emulation. That’s of particular interest to fans of the PlayStation 2 era, since the PlayStation 4 hasn’t supported emulation from that generation or the original PlayStation.
Wired got an official statement from Sony, which confirmed the news but declined to elaborate further at this time.
According to an video/article from Gamezone with reports originated from Nintendo World Report, Xenoblade Chronicles X's map is bigger than Skyrim, Fallout 4 and The Witcher 3's maps combined. Xenoblade Chronicles X will be releasing for the Wii U on December 4th in the West, after having been released in April in Japan.
The Bloodborne v1.07 title update is available today and a post on the PlayStation.blog also has details on how to access the content in The Old Hunters expansion pack.
Title update 1.07, available today, adds new features and drastically changes the online component of the game.
Update 1.07 also adds the “League” feature and introduces new NPCs into the game’s world. Join the League by meeting with Summon Master Valtr and obtaining the “Impurity” rune. You’ll need to summon him inside the shack to the right of the first lamp in the Forbidden Forest. Once you have memorized the “Impurity” rune, you will be able to access League ranking screens. Upon successfully completing a co-op session, you’ll receive the “Vermin” which you must crush to increase your points and therefore your position on the League leaderboard.
You will also be able to summon NPCs to come to your aid, just like cooperative play, including inside Chalice Dungeons. To do so, first you will need to acquire the “Old Hunter Bell” from the messengers in the Hunter’s Dream area. In some areas you may be able to summon up to two NPC Hunters, or a mix of one NPC Hunter and one other online coop player.
In addition, when there are players near you that have used the Beckoning Bell or Small Resonant Bell and are waiting to join a co-op session, they will appear in your game as an illusion or phantom with a ripple effect at their feet. That assumes they are within the correct level range and would be able to match with you.