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EA Attempts to Distance Themselves from 'Loot Boxes' by Calling them 'Surprise Mechanics'

If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it must be a surprise mechanic.

EA and loot boxes, loot boxes and EA. In some people's minds, there is no better pairing save for "gamers" and "rising up." For the past several years now, the studio has been repeatedly under fire for how they included loot boxes in many of their titles. They have included loot box mechanics in games like Madden with their Madden Ultimate Team card packs, FIFA with the similar Ultimate Team mode, Battlefield 1, and perhaps most notably, Star Wars Battlefront 2.

In fact,...
 

New Video and Post-Launch Plans for Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers

As release draws near, the information ramps up.

Square Enix once again decided to share a bunch of fresh information about their upcoming Final Fantasy XIV expansion, Shadowbringers. This fresh batch of information includes a new gameplay video along with a little look at some of the post-launch plans that are in the works for the expansion.

The new gameplay video can be seen below. This video features clips from a recent dungeon walkthrough video from the latest "Letter from the Producer LIVE #52" that happened recently. This video shows off a variety of...
 

Collection of Mana Available Now on Nintendo eShop

Play the first three Mana titles right now on Switch.

Those with a Nintendo Switch can pick up Collection of Mana for $39.99 (USD) right now from the Nintendo eShop. A physical release of this pack of games will be out starting August 27 and can be pre-purchased from various retailers and the Square Enix Store.

Collection of Mana includes the first three titles in the Mana series. It all starts with Final Fantasy Adventure, Secret of Mana, and Trials of Mana. This is the first time that Trials of Mana has been released in the West, and it is not the same as the Trials...
 

Chivalry 2 Announced as Epic Games Store Timed Exclusive

Another Tripwire published title revealed as an EGS timed-exclusive.

The Chivalry series is making a comeback at what could be a very interesting time. Despite fierce competition from Mordhau, Torn Banner Studios announced that they are working on Chivalry 2. It will once again be a multiplayer first-person "slasher" set in medieval battlefields. The game, published by Tripwire Interactive, is targeting a 2020 release on the Epic Games Store.

The publisher confirms that, just like their previously announced title Maneater, Chivalry 2 will be a one-year timed...
 

Elden Ring Announced by FromSoftware and George R.R. Martin

Game of Souls.

Hidetaka Miyazaki, the director for some of FromSoftware's most notable releases and best-selling fantasy writer, George R.R. Martin, are teaming up for a brand new action-RPG title from FromSoftware. Martin may be better known as the author behind the fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire, which served as the basis for most of the entire Game of Thrones TV series. Miyazaki is best known for creating the various Souls titles, Bloodborne, and the recently released Sekiro.

Their joint venture is called Elden Ring, an "epic fantasy title" that...
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  • DICE Reveals Plans on Vehicle Balancing Tweaks Coming to Battlefield 4

    DICE Reveals Plans on Vehicle Balancing Tweaks Coming to Battlefield 4

    After trying for a few hours just to get their blog to load, I finally see now how DICE plans to introduce even more balance to the vehicles in Battlefield 4.
    Aircraft and Anti-Aircraft
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  • Dota 2 New Bloom Festival Update Includes Terrorblade

    Dota 2 New Bloom Festival Update Includes Terrorblade

    Yesterday, the first day of reveals for the upcoming "New Bloom Festival" update for Dota 2 included a brief bit of background on the event. It will have new gifts and items galore as players take on the Year Beast.

    Today, Valve has revealed the addition of Terrorblade to the roster. He's that friendly looking fellow at the top of the page.

    Here are Terrorblade's abilities.
    Reflection - Create a double of your foe, which then attacks its original as it slows their movement.
    Conjure Image - Summon forth an illusion of yourself to aid you in battle.
    Metamorphosis - Embrace the darkness within, trading your melee attack for a ranged strike while granting additional damage.
    Sunder - Sever the soul of an ally or enemy, exchanging your health for theirs.

    With the addition of Terrorblade comes some new cosmetic items for him. If you purchase any of these during the New Bloom event, you will get an "Exalted" quality on the item.
    The Fractal Shard of Inner Abysm - Arcana Item

    Deep in the hell of Hell, Terrorblade lay bound behind fractal walls, sentenced to an eternity of twisted contemplation. He stared long into the reflection of his own worst self. And long did his worst self stare into him. Now they rise together, a single entity more powerful than ever before....

    When equipped, this item grants these custom upgrades to Terrorblade:
    Several new animations - Altered voice - New base skin & model with special ambient effects - New Hero icon, portrait, loadout pose & minimap icon - New spell effects and icons - Socketed with a gem that tints the coloring of Terrorblade and all of his abilities - Custom death effect for Terrorblade's victims

    The Arcana is arriving on February 6. The upcoming 6.80 update will also include (among other things) a Random Ability Draft. At level 11 you can enjoy this mode that finds each player randomly being assigned a hero. Each hero's abilities are placed into a pool as each player then takes turns choosing which abilities their hero will bring into battle. Yes, that means that heroes will be using abilities not native to their character. I'm sure that will make for some interesting times.

    Changelog for Dota 2 6.80 Update

    Spoiler: 
    GENERAL - You now lose one gold per second if you haven't picked a hero after the selection timer runs out in All Pick - All Pick selection time increased from 60 to 75 - All Pick pre-creep time reduced from 90 to 75 - Roshan no longer stops upgrading his hp/damage/armor at 45 minutes - Roshan upgra
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  • League of Legends Boasts 27 Million Daily Players and 7.5 Million Concurrent Players

    Riot Games revealed to the Wall Street Journal, that League of Legends is doing a-ok for itself to the tune of 27 million daily players and a peak of 7.5 million concurrent players every day.

    Every. Day.

    Let those numbers sink in a little bit. 27 million people play League of Legends on a daily basis. That's absolutely massive. It's even more impressive when you find out that back in October 2012, they only had 12 million people playing the game daily. The concurrent count is also up 50% from the 5 million peak they revealed in March of 2013. That's all well and good, but how much money is the free-to-play title (with optio...
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  • New Screenshots for Evolve

    New Screenshots for Evolve

    Earlier this month, Evolve was announced and Game Informer has been pumping out the freshest news possible for this 4vs1 title from former Left 4 Dead developers, Turtle Rock Studios.

    While there has been a great deal of information revealed, today brings us all new screenshots from the game. Enjoy the image gallery below and be sure to check out some of the earlier features at Game Informer's Evolve hub for more details that we totally dropped the ball in reporting.


    ...
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  • Microsoft Studios Acquires Rights to the Gears of War Franchise

    Microsoft Studios Acquires Rights to the Gears of War Franchise

    Gears of War is officially going to remain in the Xbox camp as Microsoft revealed today that they have acquired the rights to the franchise. Microsoft Studios has picked up the rights for the franchise from Epic Games, which includes all past and future titles in the series.

    Black Tusk Studios will assume control over the development of the franchise moving forward. Rod Fergusson, the former Director of Production at Epic, will "play a key studio leadership role" at Black Tusk. A brief interview with Phil Spencer and Hanno Lemke shed some additional light on this acquisition.
    Why was an as-yet-unproven studio
    ...
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  • Digital Foundry Compares Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition Framerate on Xbox One vs PlayStation 4

    Digital Foundry confirms what was mentioned just the other day when it comes to the framerate differences between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition.

    In nearly every instance, it seems as though the PS4 version runs at or near 60FPS on average while the Xbone manages to hit just 30FPS.

    For Xbox One, we can only speculate, but we suspect that a lower overall performance resulted in even more noticeable judder were the game to remain unlocked - which would look really unattractive compared to the capped 30fps frame-rate we see in the final game. What's curious from our perspective
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  • Release Date Announced for Final Fantasy XIV on PlayStation 4

    Release Date Announced for Final Fantasy XIV on PlayStation 4

    PlayStation 4 owners finally have a set date to look forward to for the upcoming release of the MMORPG, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn.

    That date is April 14, 2014.

    Those looking to get into the game from the start can begin pre-ordering either Limited Collector's Editions or Standard Editions on January 27 (that would be tomorrow).
    ...
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  • Next Six Months in DayZ to See Vehicles, Hunting, Base Building, and More

    Next Six Months in DayZ to See Vehicles, Hunting, Base Building, and More

    Over the next six months of development, Bohemia Interactive and DayZ creator, Dean Hall, hope to bring a wealth of new features to the game. The game is still very much considered to be in the alpha phase of development but can be found on Steam Early Access for $29.99 (USD).

    Given this alpha stage, it should be expected that there will be a ton of new features coming to the game. In the next six months, the team hopes to include new features such as drivable vehicles, camping, hunting, base building, an improved stamina system, and more.
    "Vehicles will be done based on the architecture we are doing
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  • Judge Throws Out $11 Million Award Given to Original John Madden Programmer

    Judge Throws Out $11 Million Award Given to Original John Madden Programmer

    Back in April of 2013, a lawsuit was filed against EA and EA Sports from one of the original programmers for the John Madden Football series, Robin Antonick. They claimed that EA never paid him for his work which was apparently copied for future games from his original work.

    In June, a jury agreed with Antonick and found that EA did use code and features developed by him in Madden from 1990 to 1996. The problem here, says U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer, is that the jury did not compare each version of the game in a side-by-side comparison. Instead, their decision was only based on an expert witness.
    "Without the
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  • Nintendo Reveals Yoshi's New Island

    Nintendo Reveals Yoshi's New Island

    A new Yoshi game is coming to the Nintendo 3DS. It's called Yoshi's New Island and looks as though it combines classic gameplay that fans enjoy with a few new twists.


    You can find out more at the official Yoshi's New Island website....
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  • Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition Runs at 60FPS on PS4, Microsoft Defends Xbox One

    It was revealed throughout the week that while Square Enix was targeting 30FPS for Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, the PS4 version actually runs at 60FPS. As you may have gathered already, the Xbox One version does not.

    Square Enix even said that anything above 30FPS "is gravy" as 30FPS was their primary goal from the start. But given that the PS4 still rolls at 60FPS at the same resolution, that has to sting a little bit, right Microsoft?
    "Everybody wants to focus on, you know, there's a framerate thing going on in Tomb Raider, there is a resolution thing going on and okay, there's a lot of reasons
    ...
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