Friday, November 24, 2017

News:: Moira is now available to play in competitive mode in Overwatch

In case you forgot, Blizzard added in a restriction for new Overwatch characters a while back --  before playing any hero in competitive mode, they need to have been out for at least a week. Now, Moira's time has come.

While her effectiveness in competitive is yet to be seen, she's been pretty useful in quick play. She's perfect for finishing off heroes, has a high rate of survivability, and in many instances, is fully capable of solo healing.

For me, she's been one of the most fun additions to the game in months, and I've gravitated toward her more than any other post-launch hero.

Moira is now available to play in competitive mode in Overwatch screenshot



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News:: Check out the patch notes to Splatoon 2 version 2.0 here

Splatoon fans rejoice! Version 2.0 is now live in Nintendo's popular and colourful arena-shooter Splatoon 2, bringing enough new content, change-ups and extras to make your head burst into globules of pink and green.

On the cosmetic front, the update adds new gear for your squad, including clothing and hairstyles, five new tunes have been implemented into the soundtrack and Amiibo functionality has been adapted to work better with the game's photo mode. Various fixes have been made to the menu system to provide a more streamlined process, and the first of four new battle arenas has been added to the game.

On a balance front, changes have been made to the game's general multiplayer mechanics, as well as a ton of tweaks to weapons, damage levels and ink coverage. Alongside all of these gameplay changes, various bugs have been ironed out across the board.

The full list of patch notes can be found below. Don't forget the Hydra Splatling weapon goes live at 18:00 PT this evening, with Europe and Japan to follow tomorrow morning. This is set to be a fun and exciting weekend for squid-kids everywhere. Enjoy!

Splatoon 2 is available now on Nintendo Switch.

Check out the patch notes to Splatoon 2 version 2.0 here screenshot

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News:: Player conducts study that alleges that Bungie is cheating players out of Destiny 2 experience

Destiny 2 players have always surmised that something fishy was going on with the experience system post level 20, and one researcher claims that there is now proof of funny business.

Sprawled out on a gigantic post filled with data on Reddit, EnergiserX near-definitively explains that the more you play, the less experience you earn toward Bright Engrams (read: microtransactions) after you reach the level cap. Experience losses apparently go up to roughly 95% in some cases. So sort of sum it up, EnergiserX explains, “The scaling factor will increase at least to the point where you’re only really earning 4% of what you should. Public Events will only ever earn you 50% of what they say, as the end of event XP alone is enough to trigger a 50% scaling factor."

For years Bungie has failed a lot of people when it comes to responding to issues like this. First we had the "chest cooldown," where players were inexplicably losing out on items opened in world chests because Bungie implemented an invisible timer for earning loot -- now this.

We have other, sometimes bigger developers finding out these issues and solving them in mere days with patches, and then there's Bungie. This is 2017, and it's an incredibly weird way to do business -- even in the '90s developers were responding to players on forums. The running joke since Destiny has been that "Bungie is merely a small indie company, and doesn't have time for problems like this," but after two major releases riddled with holes, the honeymoon is over.

Here is What is Really Going on With XP in Destiny 2 [Reddit]

Player conducts study that alleges that Bungie is cheating players out of Destiny 2 experience screenshot



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News:: Final Fantasy XV will have a one year anniversary stream later this month

Can you believe that Final Fantasy XV is about to turn a year old? Neither can I.

Come to think of it though it does feel like XV's prescence has been felt for a very long time, given its beginnings as another game and the myriad spinoffs and side projects its involved in. Seriously, click that link -- I'm keeping a running total of all of the things XV has spawned and its insane.

To sort of recap the last year or so, Square Enix has announced a new "Active Time Report" stream, which will kick off on November 29 at 22:00 JST. In addition to regaling us with a year of XV, it'll talk about multiplayer, the upcoming Episode Ignis, and "surprises."

Final Fantasy XV [Square Enix via Gematsu]

Final Fantasy XV will have a one year anniversary stream later this month screenshot



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News:: Bandai Namco teaser site features a mysterious microwave

Bandai Namco have opened a mysterious teaser website, for a currently unknown project.

The site features a pop-art style image of a microwave, accompanied by the simple instruction: "CLICK". Doing so causes the door to open and an egg to fall out, followed by the message "10 Days Left".

And that's that. I guess we'll find out more in ten days, or until someone leaks the surprise early, whichever comes first. Also, as a general rule, don't put eggs in the microwave, they have a tendency to explode.

[The preceding announcement featured zero egg puns.]

Bandai Namco "Microwave" Teaser [Official site]

Bandai Namco teaser site features a mysterious microwave screenshot



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News:: Nintendo's UK store has SNES Classic in stock

UK residents still hunting down a SNES Classic of their very own (or perhaps for a loved one) should hit the link below and go get one while the getting's good.

The popular retro console, pre-loaded with 21 classic game, comes bundled with a USB power adapter and is priced at £79.99. Orders will ship from Monday are limited to one per customer.

SNES Classic + USB Power Adaptor [Nintendo UK Store]

Nintendo's UK store has SNES Classic in stock screenshot



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News:: Latest 'Pokémon' games include an ode to Nintendo's late president

Developers are still eager to show their gratitude to Nintendo's late Satoru Iwata. Gamers have learned that Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon include a clear, heartfelt tribute to the company's long-serving president. It requires that you have a creature carried over from Pokémon Silver (thankfully available in the eShop) and a trek to the Game Freak building in Heahea City, but it's worth the effort to read a short-but-sweet anecdote about one of Nintendo's most appreciated leaders.

Via: Eurogamer

Source: Serebii.net, Joe Merrick (Twitter)



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News:: The Morning After: Friday, November 24th 2017

Hey, good morning! You look fabulous.

Black Friday is here. With some help from our friends at Wirecutter, we've distilled some of the best deals right here. As you process yesterday's carbs and bird protein, take a look at some of the tech news you might have missed.



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News:: ‘Session’ doesn’t care about your pro-skater high scores

There hasn't really been a good skateboarding game since Skate 3 in 2010. Don't even try to mention Tony Hawk 5, either: that game was awful. Session, an upcoming skateboarding simulation game by Crea-ture Studios, aims to change that with a neat-looking dual-stick title that focuses on using physics to pull off cool, realistic tricks. If funded, Session will be available for Xbox One and Steam — sorry PS4 fans, this one isn't for you.

Source: Kickstarter



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Thursday, November 23, 2017

News:: Best Black Friday PC game deals: Steam, Origin, Uplay, and beyond

It's 2017. Advertised "Black Friday" sales don't have to accurately mean the day after Thanksgiving, but rather now refers to a fuzzy end-of-November time of the month.

It's the same in the PC gaming market as many retailers have launched their Black Friday sales on (and even prior too) Thanksgiving Thursday.

Below are the top six PC gaming sales going on at the moment from digital retailers (more to come as they pop up). We've waded through the hundreds of PC game discounts and are showing the best of the bunch.

GMG has decent pricing on the recently released Destiny 2 and other top titles of 2017. GamersGate's best offers are all centered around Bandai Namco and Bethesda titles. Steam's Autumn Sale is a mixed bag as most other retailers have them beat - but you'll still find a handful of goodies, particularly for titles that aren't carried by third-party retailers.

Green Man Gaming

Use Coupon: GMGBLACKFRIDAY

GamersGate

Fanatical

Use Promo Code: BLACKFRIDAY10

Steam

GOG

Origin

Game deals from Dealzon. Sales help support Destructoid.

Best Black Friday PC game deals: Steam, Origin, Uplay, and beyond screenshot



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News:: All those Tamagotchi you neglected in your childhood should come back to haunt you in My Tamagotchi Forever

I don't think I ever actually bought a Tamagotchi growing up -- I just accumulated all of the neglected units that my friends killed off, replaced the battery, and called them my own. Wait, nix that, I had a WWF (WWE) Tamagotchi, where you train and battle your own wrestler instead of a cute little pet. That was a weird ass experimental project if I ever saw one.

But now, 20 years after the advent of those little creatures, they're coming back. Bandai Namco has partnered with Paladin Studios for the release of My Tamagotchi Forever, which will feature "classic elements as well as brand new game modes." You'll start off in "Tamatown," an Animal Crossing-esque home city hub,  and the game will also include minigames and evolution features. If it's done right and doesn't abuse microtransactions I'll give it a shot.

My Tamagotchi Forever will be released on both iOS and Android in 2018.

All those Tamagotchi you neglected in your childhood should come back to haunt you in My Tamagotchi Forever screenshot



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News:: Doom is the gift that keeps on giving

Out of nowhere, a three hundred pound man in an Avengers t-shirt barrels through the crowd, stomping on a child who falls to the ground clutching a Steam gift card between rigor-mortis frozen fingers.

An old man is pushed violently under a shelf, and is torn to pieces by the starving hordes who mercilessly tear apart a skid of Hatchimals, one proudly standing atop the scattered remains of his body, letting out a hellish warcry while holding his skull and spine, still connected. In the washroom, a man buries his head in a urinal and sobs while three more gang beat a teen in the bathroom stall for blu-ray collector set of the Star Wars prequels. A woman uses a broken GTA V disc to slice the throat of her best friend who was reaching for the last Google Home.

Her eyes are filled with hatred as she falls to the ground and bleeds out before being quietly shuffled into a corner. A solemn woman with pronounced cheekbones and dark circles beneath her eyes, a strand of greasy black hair hanging in front of her face, stands atop a check out counter, a bible held betwixt sweating hands, and screams psalms from at the top of her lungs, as the gathering masses bow to a burning effigy of Razer gaming mice, facing North at the front of the store while chanting “WUBBALUBBADUBDUB”.

The holidays are upon us. The end of reason is nigh. The madness of the retail hellscape cometh, and very soon on a boxing day morning, Nietzsche's cry of “God is dead” will echo in our collective memories as reluctant, pained Best Buy employees everywhere are forced to clap in unison as the desperate, teeming, hate filled masses storm the bloody gates to try and get good deals on video games and video game accessories.

Doom is the gift that keeps on giving screenshot

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News:: Under Night In-Birth Late[st] arrives in the West in February, gets collector's edition

Publishers PQube have announced that anime-up-the-ass fighting game Under Night In-Birth Late[st] will be launching in Europe and North America in February 2018, coming to PS4, PS3 and PS Vita.

The niche but beloved fighting franchise will also see a snazzy Collector's Edition in Europe, courtesy of Rice Digital. The "End of Dawn" set features the PS4 version of the game, along with a 128-page artbook, the game's soundtrack and a cool selection of 20 badges. Badges! The set will retail for around £55.

Under Night In-Birth Late[st] arrives in the West in February, gets collector's edition screenshot

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News:: Overstuffed: Conquering Kamurocho

[If there's one thing I constantly hear about the Yakuza series, it's how incredibly stuffed to the brim it is with stuff to do. For some, that much content habitually crammed into a series is great! For others, it can be just a bit much. Kerrik52 falls somewhere in the middle of that distinction. Join him as he guides us through the massive amounts of stuff to do in Yakuza 5, and remember that writing a prompt for Bloggers Wanted is a great way to get your work featured by Destructoid! - Wes]

The Yakuza games are near and dear to my heart due to their drama, silliness, and face-breaking fights. After struggling to both purchase and download it (46 GB Sega! On PSN! How's that for overstuffed!?), I finally got my hands on Yakuza 5.

Overstuffed: Conquering Kamurocho screenshot

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News:: EA is addressing the loot boxes in 'Need for Speed: Payback,' too

Most of the headlines surrounding Electronic Arts this fall have been about the loot box situation in Star Wars: Battlefront II. But Need for Speed: Payback has been dealing with the same pay-to-win progression issues since it launched a few weeks ago too. More than that, the game is an unstable mess and barely functions on Xbox hardware. Developer Ghost Games is addressing both of those with Payback's first big updates.

Source: EA



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News:: Here's how each Destiny 2 Leviathan raid challenge works

This week the final challenge hit Destiny 2's first raid, Leviathan.

Available on both normal and hard these somewhat esoteric tasks require a bit of finesse, so here's a quick breakdown of how they work.

Here's how each Destiny 2 Leviathan raid challenge works screenshot

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News:: Injustice 2's PC Port helps redeem WB Games and NetherRealm

After the godawful PC ports of Mortal Kombat X and Batman: Arkham Knight, I wouldn't blame someone for being leery when approaching Injustice 2 on PC. In fact, I wouldn't blame anyone for simply not purchasing anything from WB Games on PC ever again. We've reached a moment in gaming where more and more consumers are becoming aware that we "vote with our money."

I don't think any company is irredeemable, however, and Injustice 2's PC port is a step towards redemption for WB Games and NetherRealm (and its co-developers).

Injustice 2's PC Port helps redeem WB Games and NetherRealm screenshot

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News:: One of the biggest patches ever for Heroes of the Storm is in PTR

As seen at BlizzCon, Blizzard is shaking up Heroes of the Storm quite a bit leading into the new year. For starters towers have been re-imagined entirely, with infinite ammo. Forts and keeps now provide true sight for stealth heroes, all of which have obtained a massive rework. Now you can more easily see the stealth outline, but dedicated stealthies have gotten some tweaks and buffs (especially Zeratul) to compensate.

Other alterations include terrain outlines (mostly for Lucio and Junkrat), an increased camera height for a wider view, more visible battleground timers, neutral regeneration globes if one isn't claimed in three seconds, and some mercenary changes (to make them more meaningful and impactful). Having tried this out I'm mostly in favor of them, even the stealth rework -- as Valeera and Zeratul are more fun as a result. I'm still undecided on the infinite tower ammo, though tests show that game length has not increased as a result of the patch.

You can check out all these changes now in the PTR (just select PTR in the launcher instead of your region), and Hanzo will be injected in on November 27. This special testing session will last three weeks given how hefty it is.

One of the biggest patches ever for Heroes of the Storm is in PTR screenshot



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News:: Best Black Friday VR deals are PCs with free Mixed Reality headsets

Forget the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, because Microsoft is pushing their Windows Mixed Reality platform hard this Black Friday season. At participating retailer, you can pick up a VR-ready computer with a Mixed Reality headset for FREE (up to a $400 value). That's a pretty aggressive promotion all things considered.

You'll need to act fast because while we were writing up this deal, the HP Mixed Reality headset being offered at Best Buy is already out of stock (the Acer and Dell models are still available).

Conversely, if you prefer a laptop, Microsoft Store looks to have plenty more in stock and their deals are just pretty damn good as well. In fact, some of the GTX 1050 machines probably won't be able to handle VR properly - but if you offload the headset and controllers on eBay or Craigslist, you're effectively getting a gaming capable laptop/computer for a damn cheap price.

Microsoft Store PC + Mixed Reality Deals

(Full list of qualifying computers)

Best Buy PC + Free Mixed Reality Deals

(Full list of qualifying computers)

Add the PCs listed above to cart, then add the Acer Mixed Reality headset and controller to cart separately and you'll see $0.00 at checkout for the headset.

HTC Vive Black Friday Deals

Still, prefer a Rift or Oculus vs. the Mixed Reality headsets this Black Friday? As of writing, the best Vive offer is probably straight from Vive.com as they're throwing in a $50 Steam gift card. This HTC Vive VR offer is good through Cyber Monday and should hold it's stock. Similarly, you can pick up a unit at GameStop with a $50 GameStop gift card instead.

PlayStation VR Black Friday Deals

Prefer the PlayStation VR (because you have a PlayStation 4...)? The good news is that the $100 discount on PS VR bundles are still in effect and in fact, you can pick up the Skyrim bundle for a slightly cheaper $335 at Dell vs. all other participating retailers. Our top pick though would be the Gran Turismo Sport bundle and then pick up two move controllers in the near future for cheap.

Spot any other noteworthy VR deals for this Black Friday? Let us know in the comments and we'll add them to the list above.

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Best Black Friday VR deals are PCs with free Mixed Reality headsets screenshot



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News:: Overstuffed: Back to the daily grind

[As he is often wont to do, Cedi gets at the subject of overstuffing one's self in games with the thought and analysis worthy of a scientific journal. Today's topic: Grinding in RPGs/mobile games! Do you, like Cedi and countless others, find yourself compelled to grind just to get so OP that you wipe that flamboyant grin off Kuja's face? Let us know in the comments! And while you're at it, contribute to our Bloggers Wanted prompt, where the Dtoid staff could find its front page overstuffed with user blogs! - Wes]

Level grinding is a very curious thing. Many times when critics refer to grinding in RPGs, it’s a complaint. Yet grinding has remained a staple mechanic of effectively every game within the genre, and even several games outside of it, for decades. It seems weird, doesn’t it?

The concept itself was borrowed from tabletop RPGs, which are built around characters growing stronger from completing encounters. Yet the vast majority of GMs don’t want players to be too strong or too weak for any given plot climax, so they always orchestrate encounters in such a way to provide just enough EXP or loot for their desired difficulty curve. Most video games don’t have the luxury of being GMed by a human brain, so they’ve instead settled into the trend of repeating encounters which (traditionally) never diminish. Strange how such a tiny change completely alters the dynamic of what EXP and leveling up means in two otherwise similar mediums, isn’t it? I myself am no exception to the trap of the grind. I’ve repetitively mashed buttons for hours, days, sometimes even weeks just to get a few more points into my stats. Too many for any practical purpose, for sure.

Overstuffed: Back to the daily grind screenshot

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News:: Topical eating-related video games to talk about this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is happening in parts of the world today, and for some, it's quite a struggle. The holiday has the tendency to bring people together who often avoid each other for the bulk of the year, with the hope of finding a sense of closeness and empathy. These hopes are often dashed by the cold reality that the family members in question only have surface level compatibility. Digging any deeper than "Hey, did you see the game last night?" or "Wow, I can't believe Walking Dead hasn't been canceled yet!" only leads to anxiety, conflict, disillusionment, and ultimately, a deep hatred of the holiday and everyone involved in it. 

"Thankfully" for you, dear reader, I have the solution to all your problems. Below you will find a series of handy conversation starters that both bring exciting, holiday-appropriate information to the "table" and aid you in pivoting away from more high risk topics that others may try "stuffing" into your "face". 

Let's eat!

Topical eating-related video games to talk about this Thanksgiving screenshot

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News:: The Hydra Splatling is hitting Splatoon 2 tomorrow

For those hoping to settle post-Thanksgiving overeating trauma with a little competitive inking, a new weapon will be arriving tomorrow evening in Nintendo's team-shooter, Splatoon 2.

This week sees the Hydra Splatling joining the arsenal. This minigun knock-off was the final weapon to be added to the original Splatoon. Think of it as a far more kawaii version of Blaine's "Ol' Painless" from Predator. It will be arriving equipped with an Autobomb sub and a Splashdown special.

The Hydra Splatling goes live in Splatoon 2 tomorrow evening at 18:00 PT in North America, with Japan and Europe to follow on the morning of the November 25.

Splatoon 2 is available now on Nintendo Switch

The Hydra Splatling is hitting Splatoon 2 tomorrow screenshot

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News:: The developer of that PC to Switch streaming app got Cuphead running on it

If you haven't heard of Rainway yet, you probably will in a few months. Developed by Andrew Sampson, the whole idea of the app is to stream your PC to other devices.

Ever since the Switch started to gain steam Sampson has focused on it, which only highlights just how well a lot of other exclusives would work on the platform. One of them is Cuphead, a game that will likely never arrive on other platforms due to an exclusivity deal, but that isn't going to stop Sampson from showing it off anyway on Switch with Rainway.

As you can see it's running pretty smoothly, but this is likely in optimal conditions. We'll all see for ourselves how it works out when it hits in public beta form on January 20 next year.

The developer of that PC to Switch streaming app got Cuphead running on it screenshot

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News:: Overstuffed: Addicted to game sales

[Let he who doesn't have a massive, irritating fucking backlog cast the first stone! Let jaygerbomb regale you with a tale on this Thanksgiving Day of how a simple act of buying games on clearance led him to a lifelong struggle of resisting sweet gaming deals. Lord knows I'd be attending these group meetings, as well. This is a wonderful entry for our Bloggers Wanted series, where this month we're discussing gaming in all its excesses and merciless murders of brevity. Write a cool blog like this one, and you could see your work on Destructoid's front page! - Wes]

When I was a kid, my parents didn’t buy me a lot of video games. Sure, I remember getting a few for Christmas, birthdays and special occasions, but for the most part if I wanted a new NES game, I was buying it with my own money. I’d save my allowance, mow neighbors’ lawns, and shovel their driveways in order to save up enough to make my next acquisition. I managed to get a collection of nearly 100 NES games at one point, and most of them I bought on my own.

Overstuffed: Addicted to game sales screenshot

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News:: The tragic history of the videogame turkey

[From our Destructoid Golden Archives, here's a Chad Concelmo classic from this day in Dtoid, 2009]

The other day I was driving down the street, when a large feather from a rusty white truck transporting turkeys blew into my Jeep window. After I pulled over, I held the turkey feather in my hand and a single tear cascaded down my cheek. I looked up into the setting sun and thought about a time when turkeys must have walked around our world free of all fear. A time when turkey families used to gather around their little turkey dinner tables and gobble about the turkey dad’s day at the office or the turkey kid’s day at school.

When I got home, I placed the turkey feather in an ornate vase on the mantle of my fireplace as a tribute to our fallen feathered friends. As I bent down to pick up my Xbox 360 controller, the feather floated off my mantle (maybe on the breath of God?) and landed directly on top of one of my videogame consoles.

Again, I cried.

And then it hit me. The turkey feather was trying to tell me something. The way the light danced around the frayed ends of the feather -- the way its shadow formed a specific gray shape on the matted white top of my console. Of course! All the turkeys of the world were communicating to me through this mystical feather sent from fate herself to tell me their torturous tale. A terrible tale about how turkeys of the world have been viciously portrayed in videogames over the years.

Hit the jump to hear their tragic story.

The tragic history of the videogame turkey screenshot

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News:: The best PlayStation 4 games

There's a big reason why the PlayStation 4 is the best-selling console: It has a smattering of games that you can't play anywhere else. Think: blockbusters like Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, Horizon: Zero Dawn and Bloodborne. But even if Indiana Jones simulators and massive open worlds where you hunt down robo-dinosaurs aren't your thing, there are still plenty of exclusives to pick from. Whether it's the best baseball video game franchise, a choose-your-own-adventure horror or an engrossing social simulator/JRPG hybrid, there's a lot to play on Sony's latest console. And then there are games from massive third-party publishers like Activision and Ubisoft, along with quirky indie offerings to round out the selection.



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News:: The music of Rare including Battletoads, Conker and Viva Pinata is coming to vinyl

Purveyors of vinyl soundtracks iam8bit are to release three new LPs of classic games from British studio Rare. These new releases are next in line after the company's previous records for Perfect Dark and the NES Battletoads title.

First up is a double LP for cheeky Nintendo 64 title Conker's Bad Fur Day, which features recognisable tracks such as "Sloprano" and "Rock Solid", as well as featuring unreleased tunes by composer Robin Beanland and colorful sleeve art from Joey Spiotto.

The music of Rare including Battletoads, Conker and Viva Pinata is coming to vinyl screenshot

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News:: Stick it to The Man on Switch still makes me giggle

It’s no secret that I love this game. The new Switch version marks the fifth time that I’ve completed it, and I still loved every second. I almost never replay games, so this is an especially odd case. Even after all these years, it holds up extremely well. The jokes still hit hard, and I was laughing like an idiot the entire time.

However, there’s not anything new offered here outside of the HD Rumble, and that was actually a little annoying when playing undocked. The shaking is extremely prevalent as you're reading minds, and it’s a bit distracting when trying to hear the dialogue. Luckily, that can easily be turned off in the console settings menu. 

There’s something about Stick it to The Man that works really well on handhelds. The extra screen real estate offered by the Switch, compared to the PS Vita, is a huge bonus too. There were no noticeable differences in performance when docked either, so you folks that prefer being tethered to a television should be good to go as well. 

Stick it to The Man on Switch still makes me giggle screenshot

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