March 31, 2017

Dead Space 4 announced, Tom Cruise to do a voice cameo

With the success of Dead Space 3, you could have bet the farm that Dead Space 4 was going to happen and Visceral Games and EA made a brief announcement today in response to a early morning leak by an employee on Twitter.

The release said "Yes, Dead Space is returning for a fourth round of guts and glory. Despite what you may have read Isaac Newton will again be featuring as the lead protagonist."

There was the usual yada yada and then this wicked gem near the end of the release.

"Dead Space can be a game that can be taken a bit to seriously at times so we wanted to have a bit of fun with the player so Tom Cruise has been cast as a renegade Unitologist who has finally seen Unitology for what it really is. Given the similarities to Unitology and Tom's own religion of Scientology we thought it would be a pretty meta thing to do, and give the game's players some further food for thought as they slice and dice their way on planet Earth."

Tom Cruise was quoted as saying, "Yes, it's a pretty clever joke. The idea threw me at first but I played Dead Space 1 and 2 right through in the same weekend and thought I really should delve into video game acting so I signed up."

That's pretty crazy, almost jump on the couch worthy kind of news. Let's see how this pans out.

Dead Space 4 will be available for purchase on 1 April 2017.

Correction: Tom Cruise was actually cast as Grand Moff Tarkin in Rogue One and made a cameo appearance.

Sarah Palmer to replace Cortana in Halo 6 as Chief's love interest

The Chief is Palmers's new love interest in Halo 6

The Chief is Palmers's new love interest in Halo 6

It was also announced by 343 Industries today that Halo 6 was on its way.

Which is pretty cool and you can get details elsewhere. But of real note, quietly hidden away at the bottom of the press release was this telling revelation:

“Halo 4 was about the Chief finding his humanity and we felt that story worked out really well. What we didn’t count on was the fan reaction to Commander Sarah Palmer’s character in the game and the role she took on during the two seasons of Spartan Operations. Fans have been extremely vocal in their support for the character and asked for more of her. 

Accordingly, we have taken the step of featuring Palmer’s Spartan as a lead character in Halo 6. Obviously with the death of Cortana in Halo 4 we needed a strong female lead and Palmer was the obvious choice.

Jennifer Hale will return as the voice actress and Veddette Lim will again model for Palmer.”

That’s a pretty massive change to the game, I hope they get the character right as she’s a bit ‘terse’ for my liking. God, I hope the Master Chief doesn't fall in love with her now that he's found humanity! 

What do you think? Do you agree that Sarah Palmer should replace Cortana in Halo 6?

Halo 6 will be released on 1 April 2017


For clarity, this was an April Fool's that some people took way too seriously!

March 30, 2017

His name is Gary! Gary the Ghaul

Gary from Destiny 2

Do you think Cayde-6's 'Gary' reference to the bad guy of Destiny 2 is going to stick? Why don't we just call him Gary the Ghaul...

What is the release date of Destiny 2?

When is destiny 2 being released?

Destiny 2's release date is officially:

8th September 2017. 

That's right, Destiny 2 is going to be released this year, in full glory as Cayde-6 and the other guardians battle the new threat of the Red Legion and their leader Ghaul.

September 8th. Is the release date.

May be it will take take time to explain why it didn't have time to explain why it didn't have time to explain time...

Mark in your calendars, get that day of annual leave requested and pre-order Destiny from Amazon.

Watch the Destiny 2 announcement video

Watch the Destiny 2 announcement video

Fans have been patiently waiting for it, naysayers have been saying they don't want it at all but EVERYBODY must see this announcement of Bungie's Destiny 2.

Watch the Destiny 2 announcement video

You've watched it? Good.

It's obvious then that Bungie is stirring the pot up to make a new brew. Maybe even they are intended to deliver an actual story based campaign?

There's actually no doubt they are going to do so following their excellent last two DLC expansions  in response to the muted initial campaign that was offered.

Bungie have also clearly listened to the fans and it's clear that Cayde-6 will be focal point of the game, a welcome gust of bravado.

Here's the official description of the game from Bungie:

"Humanity’s last safe city has fallen to an overwhelming invasion force led by Ghaul, the imposing commander of the brutal Red Legion.

He has stripped the city’s Guardians of their power, and forced the survivors to flee. You will venture to mysterious, unexplored worlds of our solar system to discover an arsenal of weapons and devastating new combat abilities. 

To defeat the Red Legion and confront Ghaul, you must reunite humanity’s scattered heroes, stand together, and fight back to reclaim our home."

Destiny 2 will release on September 8th 2017. Check out the prices on Amazon for Xbox, PC and PlayStation.

March 23, 2017

Halo's The Silent Cartographer Map is real and can be found in Cathedral Cove, New Zealand

A Reddit user is pretty sure that somewhere in NZ there’s a real life Halo CE - Silent Cartographer beach…. I think they might be on the money! Below is the real life photo from Catherdral Cove in New Zealand and beneath that a screen grab from the Halo game that started it all!

cathedral cove new zealand

Do you agree they look similar?
silent cartographer halo ce beach

The best EDI cosplay you'll probably come across

EDI cosplay from Mass Effect

We previously thought this EDI cosplay was great but here's some excellent cosplay from Mass Effect's larger than life A.I., EDI.

EDI Costume Play

This keen cosplay action pose was brought to you by Crystal Graziano.

Best Ever Wonder Woman Cosplay?

You might have heard of Meagan Marie, she's pretty big in cosplay circles. Here's her latest effort, a truly fantastic version of Wonder Woman.

Wonder woman amazon cosplay

The costume is less All American Diana and more Amazonian Warrior Princess. What do you think, is this the best ever cosplay version of Wonder Woman?

We're pretty sure the release of new movie starring Gal Godot will increase fan worship and increase cosplaying action!

March 19, 2017

A boy's best friend is his mother OR this is a post about Destiny that talks about Star Wars and Hitchcock

leigh -psycho -shower

Matt Soell describes himself as a “Writer, Raconteur, Man About Town” but for context, he’s an ex-‘Bungie Community Guy’ so probably knows a thing or three about how Bungie works, its mindset and how it likes to slowly build things up until their endeavours are available for the world to consume.

In an article titled “Transparency is overrated’ Matt eloquently responds to some criticisms that Bungie did not reveal enough detail when they first officially announced Destiny.

Here’s his opening:

“When I see articles in the video game press complaining that Bungie’s reveal of their upcoming title Destiny was frustratingly light on details, I wonder why they care. If I had a quarter for every time the game press mangled quotes, described nonexistent product features, and confused internet speculation with fact-checked confirmation, I could melt all those quarters down and put in a new driveway made of solid copper.  People who write about games (not all of them, but more than enough) are light on details quite regularly. And that’s for the games they care about, the ones they write about themselves instead of just cutting-and-pasting from a press release.  Now Bungie throws a party and the game press can’t fill in all the blanks in their Mad Libs Game Journalism booklet right away, and you’d think some of them had been slapped.”

I tend to agree (and probably that’s why I’m posting this for a bit of self confirmation bias ;) and in terms of wild speculation and rumour one only has to look at the announcement of the new Star Wars trilogy. Zack Synder is directing! No he’s not. It’s going to be about the Skywalkers. Han Solo’s in it. The old guy from the television show Fringe is in it. It will feature Optimus Prime as a part of a Transformers cross over.

The reality is all we know is that Lucas sold the golden goose to the guys that made Bambi and they’ve engaged JJ Abrams to direct.

And that’s all Bungie have done, they've basically said “JJ Abrams” albeit in the form of Jason Jones saying, here’s a vidoc featuring some cool things (filled with lots of little details actually….) and you’ll just have to wait and see what falls out of the tree.

Soell draws a nice comparison to Hollywood (back to film again? Ed) and a certain classic movie:

“It’s showbiz.  It’s part of the experience.  This is the entertainment software industry and we are, whether or not we look the part, entertainers.  The men and women of Bungie follow in the footsteps of Alfred Hitchcock, who had the unmitigated audacity to introduce Psycho with a trailer that featured nothing but empty environments and lots of him talking.  No clips from the actual film, no major plot revelations…and that lady in the shower wasn’t even Janet Leigh!  (It was Vera Miles, who plays Leigh’s sister in the film.)  What a rip-off!  What a waste of his fans’ time!

What a surprise that it’s remembered fondly, decades later, as one of the greatest movie trailers ever.  It’s as if Hitchcock knew what he was doing.”

It was as if Hitchcock knew what he was doing.

Well history shows Hitchcock took a huge gamble making Pyscho and that he used his own money to finance it’s production. But he knew he had a great story to tell and tell it he did and that story is now so well remembered they are making a modern day television show about the Bates family.

Bungie has a story to tell too, they have just at this time given us their trailer. Their true Box Office is just around the corner….

The best Elizabeth of Bioshock cosplay you'll ever see

vera lynn -cosplay-bioshock-elizabeth
Find the girl and wipe away the debt...

The best Elizabeth of Bioshock cosplay you've ever seen

This is possibly the best Bioshock cosplay we've seen. Popular cosplayer Vera Green has taken on Bioshock Infinite's Elizabeth, modeled on the very popular Burial at Sea DLC.

You can check out Elizabeth costumes on Amazon if you want to recreate the look.

bioshock infinite costume play

elizabeth and booker cosplay

We'll always have a soft spot for Elizabeth, particularly this cosplay effort of the lass!

The cutest ever Liara cosplay picture

liara cosplay from Mass Effect

Is this the cutest cosplayers you’ve seen in a while? This is Liara from Mass Effect and we think she’s pretty rad. We’ve also found some awesome cosplay of Legion and Jack. Mass Effect fans are the best!

legion cosplay mass effect

jack costume mas effect

See more Jack cosplay at this page. 

March 18, 2017

Remembering Commander Keen

commander keen goodbye galaxy

Gears of Halo has been talking about Mass Effect lately but before there was the Normandy, before Eden Prime and the Geth, before Miranda Lawson and before the Reapers, and before there was Commander Sheppard there was the ultimate Commander, Commander Keen.

Billy Blaze would jump around on a pogo stick avoiding green aliens and shooting robots with his laser gun and it was the coolest thing around at the time for my thirteen / 15 year old year old self. Except maybe Lemmings....

Commander Keen taught me about looking for hints and tricks in games. A secret message there, a subtle joke there. It was very original in many facets of its workings.

tom hall commander keen
Classic Tom Hall pose
A bit of of history of the game's birth tells that three men made it possible. Tom Hall, John Romero and John Carmack banded together in their 'off time' at a company called Softdisk but they eventually left to form the company ID.

I recall the first episode was shareware which was a pretty cool idea back in the day. Indeed the 3DRealms site says "The entire first episode of Keen was released to the world as shareware. The idea was that you got a good sense of what it looks like and feels like, and if you liked it, you paid for it - and obtained the remaining parts of the game"

The game was released in December 1990 "Gamers who wanted the next two levels had to pay for them - and pay they did. In January, the ID guys got their first royalty check, for approximately $10,000." They didn't look back after that.

commander keen billy blaze cosplay
Billy Blaze cosplay
John and Tom went on to become involved in Wolfenstein, Doom and Quake.

Those three games became genuine gaming phenomenons in their own right.  I think a lot of modern games such as Halo and the like have a wee duty of debt to such games.

I see that Commander Keen is available for download on the Steam service - I'd buy the game if there was an ipad version! Can someone make that happen?

ME4 development well underway

Mass Effect 4 / Andromeda's coding  is well underway somewhere in Montreal. Like Halo 5, just don't call it that.

Games just don't get written from scratch these days. Long gone are the days of John Romero basically writing Commander Keen in a small office somewhere - A Grade games need a boat load of code so to make things a little easier it's always nice to borrow some from your friends eh?

Yanick Roy from Bioware Montreal tweeted this:

He later clarified this meant that some parts of Dragon Age: Inquisition's engine were being used. 

This idea is not new for example there are a lot of games out there that share the same 'engine' such as those of the Call of Duty series. The idea is that you don't have to make a whole new set of code for in world physics etc - you use the engine and configure it to your needs thus saving production resource to use in other parts of the game. Engines are updated over time too.

Sounds like Mass Effect is in safe hands  in Montreal with Yanick Roy - but do your self a favour mate and keep Casey Hudson away from the ending...

Does this unit have a sole?

I found this too funny not to post - Legion from Mass Effect in a shoe store...

March 13, 2017

Who else is going for a visit to Habitat 7?

Mass Effect Andromeda Crew

We're getting amped for Mass Effect Andromeda! The release is so close we can feel it. We can't wait to begin the adventure with The Path Finder.  Let's explore what lives beyond!

The trailer makes the game look absolutely epic. The CGI is clearly top notch and the Path Finder's team looks pretty bad ass.

March 21 is getting pretty close...