The first week of October is kicking off in a truly spooktacular style with the release of Alien Isolation to scare the living bejesus out of us - but that's not all this week has to offer. Come talk video games in this week's edition of Tuesday Game Room!
What have you been playing this week?
In between flitting around Destiny trying to clear up a few holes in my gear before I settle in to waiting for expansions, I've been playing Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor. I'd actually have some screenshots I took of my time playing from my PS4 here, but despite having played the game for about 15 hours, I haven't got any. I didn't think to stop in my relentless quest of planning out and executing assassination after assassination in Sauron's orcish hordes, and having so much fun in the process.
There's something about Shadow of Mordor that makes it very tough to put down, especially its inventive 'Nemesis System' that sort of breeds this weird contempt for your targets as you scuffle with them, or lose to one and see him rise to an even stronger position of power, making the will to hunt them down and snuff them out once and for all all the more potent. There's something brutally satisfying about it all, and it's definitely one of my biggest surprises of the year so far.
These new releases sections are getting longer and longer to write - a sure sign we're heading into the madness of the Fall release window. Kicking off this week is the petrifying Alien Isolation, out on PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PC as the big multiplatform title of the week. But it's definitely not all - we've got Driveclub racing its way onto the PS4 after an almost year-long delay, Project Spark officially leaving beta and going to release on Xbox One, and NBA 2K14 bringing Basketball hijinks to the PC, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3 and PS4.
Aside from that it's a decidedly PSN-focused week, with Divekick, Minecraft, Dust: An Elysian Tail, Pix the Cat (also on Vita) and Spelunky all landing on PS4. Just in time for Halloween, Costume Quest 2 comes to PC this week as well, and finally, Sleeping Dogs gets a shiny coat of new paint in the Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition, out on PC this Friday.
And now, the News
Once again it's time for a few select picks from the last week of Gaming news, via Eurogamer:
- Kickstarter Games are making a lot less money this year - While it's far from dead, the Kickstarter boom might be drying up for video games according to new data, with an estimated $27 million due to be funneled into crowdfunded games this year. A pretty good number, until you look back at last year, where $57 million was spent on games via Kickstarter funding. There's plenty of factors, big name flops and controversies like the Yogscast game marred the service in 2014, and there's been a lot less high profile developers courting the site this year compared to last - but it might mean the era of Kickstarted games could be in its twilight.
- Ubisoft locks foot firmly in its mouth, declares Assassins Creed Unity will have parity on Xbox One and PS4 to 'avoid debates' - What is it about Assassin's Creed games and Ubisoft's inability to not say completely dumb things? This time it's producer Vincent Pontbriand, who in a wave of previews for the game yesterday said that both the Xbox One and PS4 versions of the game were set to run at 900p and 30FPS, identical as to 'avoid debates' over which version of the game ran better. It's a stupid reason in and of itself for parity, but considering the (at times absurd) furore over the technical differences between Xbox One and PS4 games over the last year, it's an even dumber thing to say to the public - inevitably, the remarks sparked plenty of outrage and (equally absurd) talk of Microsoft paying off Ubisoft to gimp the PS4 version of Unity. The anger lead the developer to hastily put out a statement today saying that things like the resolution could still change - á la the last Assassin's game, which saw a post-release patch bump the PS4 version up to 1080p. Maybe next time Ubi, it's better to say nothing at all.
- Microsoft's Illumiroom lives on in MS research's Roomalive - Illumiroom, a project which used the Kinect camera system to project game elements beyond a TV screen, has been long in the works at Microsoft, but has rarely been seen as a consumer-level product. It's still not there yet, but with the news that Microsoft R&D has revamped the idea for Roomalive, there's still a chance the company might do something with the tech, even as they've begun to downplay the role of Kinect in current Xbox hardware.
- You don't understand how great this is: Vib Ribbon is coming to PS3 and Vita, PS4 in the future - I say that because the vast majority of readers are from America, a barren wasteland that was deprived of the trippy, delightful brilliance of Vib Ribbon when it came out for the PS1 in 90's. Vib Ribbon became a bit of a cult hit, thanks to the quirky vector graphics and excellent soundtrack, and now American gamers can experience it for the first time when it releases this week. Hooray!
We'll be back this time next Tuesday for more gaming discussion, but for now, sound off in the comments with the games you've been playing, and what you're looking forward to this week - and don't forget to join the unofficial io9 community group on Steam!
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