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Star Wars: The Clone Wars And More Come To Minecraft

Minecraft on Xbox 360 and Xbox One is getting another blast from the galactic past. A new bundle of Star Wars skins arrives today.

While these are billed as “prequel characters,” the characters included also represent the animated The Clone Wars series. On the light side, you’ll find Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Mace Windu, and other Jedi. There are also key clone troopers featured, including Commander Cody and Captain Rex.

Fighting on the side of the Separatists are Count Dooku, General Grievous, Cad Bane, Asajj Ventress, Savage Opress, and Mother Talzin. The pack of 52 skins (the full list below) is available today for $ 2.99.

Also today, there’s a free update for the Halo Mash-Up Pack adding Blue Team and Fireteam Osiris. You can also purchase the Halloween Mash-Up Pack today.

  • Anakin Skywalker, Jedi Knight
  • Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi Master
  • Qui-Gon Jinn
  • Queen Amidala, Naboo Throne Room
  • Senator Padmé Amidala, Geonosis
  • Mace Windu
  • Darth Maul
  • Senator Palpatine
  • Count Dooku
  • General Grievous
  • Jango Fett
  • Watto
  • Boss Nass
  • Aayla Secura
  • Clone Commander Cody
  • Clone Trooper, Phase I
  • Security Battle Droid
  • Zam Wesell
  • Ki-Adi-Mundi
  • Lama Su
  • Kit Fisto
  • Mas Amedda
  • Captain Panaka
  • Plo Koon
  • Poggle the Lesser
  • Captain Typho
  • Nute Gunray
  • Padmé Amidala, Pilot Disguise
  • Queen Amidala, Battle Dress
  • Padmé Amidala, Peasant Disguise
  • Bail Organa
  • Adi Gallia
  • MagnaGuard
  • Clone Commander Gree
  • Kashyyyk Trooper
  • Tion Medon
  • Asajj Ventress
  • Savage Opress
  • Ahsoka Tano
  • Clone Captain Rex
  • Hondo Ohnaka
  • Cad Bane
  • Mother Talzin
  • Wat Tambor
  • Shaak Ti
  • C-3PO on Battle Droid
  • Battle Droid on C-3PO
  • Commander Battle Droid
  • Infantry Battle Droid
  • Pilot Battle Droid
  • Beru Whitesun Lars
  • Owen Lars

If you're looking for more Star Wars in your Minecraft, there's a classic trilogy costume pack and a more recent one featuring Star Wars: Rebels characters.

[Source: Xbox Wire] – The Feed

Sword Coast Legends Doesn’t Come Out Until Tuesday, But You Can Play Right Now If You Pre-Order

Sword Coast Legends, the Dungeons & Dragons romp featuring dungeon building and Dungeon Mastering, doesn't launch until October 20, but if you pre-order the game on Steam you can play immediately via Head Start Access.

While the game features a full campaign and everything, much of the intrigue surrounding the title comes from designing and delving into player-created dungeons.

We've taken a few looks at the game as it's moved closer to completion, and a full review is on the way.

Our Take
What we've played has been interesting, and I'm looking forward to checking out the full game. – The Feed

WWE 2K16’s MyCareer Mode Sounds Like A Superstar Dream Come True

With WWE 2K16 just a month away, it’s finally time for us to find out what the “campaign” looks like. Sure, create superstars and legendary matchups is great, but sometimes you just want to be the scrappy rookie trying to make a name for himself.

MyCareer mode starts you off in NXT (the WWE minor leagues), as you work towards becoming a champion. Once you’ve accomplished that goal, you can stick around and rule the ring or graduate to the main rosters.

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The ultimate goal is to enter the Hall of Fame, but along the way, you’ll have milestones to accomplish. How you get to the Hall is up to you, and it doesn’t require championship runs. Being an entertaining mid-card star is a valid path to fame. All of that seems nice, but it’s how you shape your superstar’s personality and rivalries that caught my attention.

Being able to set up distractions (either the ref or superstars), drive rivalries by cutting promos, and ultimately mold yourself into the ideal face or worst heel sounds like what WWE fans have been looking for. You can check out the new trailer above and read our recent hands-on preview of this year’s Stone Cold Steve Austin showcase mode for more information.

WWE 2K16 will be out for Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 3 on October 27. – The Feed

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Will Come Packaged With New Xbox One Consoles

If you're a fan of the original Gears of War and you still haven't bought an Xbox One, then Microsoft is sweetening the deal, hoping you'll buy its console by packaging copies of the Gears of War: Ultimate Edition remake inside special editions of the Xbox One.

According to Gears of War content creator Peter Byrne, during a panel at San Diego Comic Con The Coalition studio head Rod Fergusson confirmed that new boxes of the Xbox One console would be sold with a prepackaged copy of Gears of War: Ultimate Edition starting on August 25. You can already see the new bundle – which retails for $ 349 – on Microsoft's official site.

[Source: @TheRazoredEdge]


Our Take
I always appreciate it when a video game console comes bundled with a game, and the original Gears of War is a solid shooter, so this is a good deal for those who've held off buying the console until now. We know that the game has been well-tested so it should be good to go when it releases. – The Feed

Journey’s Hunicke: The industry must come together, evolve, and innovate

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Toys and games come together, as Disney merges divisions

Disney Infinity is having a big effect on the company, and its consumer products and interactive divisions are becoming one. …

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Opinion – Sony And Suzuki Need To Come Clean On Shenmue Budget And Funding

Last night, Shenmue creator Yu Suzuki posted an update to the Shenmue III Kickstarter. The note amounted to an apology for deception regarding the game’s budget and outside investors, including Sony, who invited Suzuki to announce the project during its E3 press conference. It doesn’t go nearly far enough, and fans should be demanding more.

I’ve written about Kickstarter before, cautioning backers to be smart with their funding. I recognize that Shenmue III is a game long anticipated and a white whale for many, but that isn’t reason to give project managers a pass. Rather, this is exactly the time to be hyper vigilant.

Kickstarter is many things, but at its core, it's fundraising. It doesn't have the charitable connotations of that traditional American nonprofit practice, but the parallels are plentiful. The Kickstarter pitch is an appeal for financing. It's a prospectus that must include all relevant details about inputs and outputs, risks and rewards, reasonable assurances and potential barriers to fulfilling those promises.

Kickstarter is not a store. It is not a mechanism for pre-ordering, though many project managers skirt that line as closely as they can.

Backers and donors both take significant risk when they opt to fund a campaign. There's no return on those funds, rather the reward (beyond tangibles awarded at certain tiers) is the satisfaction of seeing a project come to fruition. Backing a Kickstarter is not an investment, just like contributing to a nonprofit organization will not yield dividends.  

In order to make an informed decision, backers deserve transparency. They are entitled to know what they are getting into. Put simply: the campaign and its manager, Ys Net, failed to fulfill its obligation in the initial pitch. As the project manager, the buck stops with Suzuki. Because the campaign didn't state that there were other funders, if Sony or other investors pull out, Suzuki is still responsible for delivering the game as promised with the funding available via the Kickstarter. It's unlikely that this will happen, but the way the pitch was framed sets up expectations that seem exceedingly difficult to meet without outside funding sources. The first Shenmue game cost $ 47 million to make, so the $ 2 million won't go far in making a true sequel that fans expect Suzuki to deliver. That primary funding coming from other sources is essential to this project's potential success.

Whether Suzuki received bad counsel from Sony or other investors or thought it wise to obfuscate the true nature of the project budget doesn't matter.  There is one currency that rules everything on Kickstarter. It is not cash. It is trust, and Yu Suzuki has so far squandered it.

Yu Suzuki

Smart backers knew from the start, though it wasn't stated explicitly in the campaign pitch, that the $ 2 million funding target for the campaign was a pebble at the foot of Shenmue III’s mountain. The model of using Kickstarter as proof of interest isn’t new or outrageous (Koji Igarashi's record-breaking Bloodstained employed this method). However, from the moment the campaign was announced, something about this felt wrong.

Sony gave up valuable time during its E3 stage presentation, minutes that cost thousands of dollars, to present the campaign. Sony’s Adam Boyes went out of his way to tell those in the audience and watching via livestream that Sony had nothing to do with the project. 

“Recently, a developer told us they were bringing back a fan-favorite game for PC and PS4,” Boyes said. “Now, this is very much their project, but we wanted to celebrate their announcement on our stage, since this is a game that PlayStation fans have been very, very, very vocal about.”

When the Kickstarter went live, there was no mention of the other investors. When questioned directly, Suzuki admitted there were outside partners, but declined to say who. We asked Sony directly, who admitted that an agreement had been in place from the beginning. If Shenmue III hit its goal (which it did quickly), Sony would invest in the project. 

I do agree with Boyes that Kickstarter has made a number of wonderful projects a reality. However, when publishers use the platform to diminish their own risk and aren't clear about that, it's misleading to a hungry fanbase that simply wants to see a game finally realized.

Sony's Adam Boyes introducing Shenmue III Kickstarter

It took longer to get concrete evidence (not just budget-based supposition) that someone else was investing (and even longer to determine who) than it did for the project to reach its funding goal. That isn’t right, and it disrespects those fans who have been waiting years to see this game realized.

The problem here isn’t a matter of a major publisher mitigating its risk by ensuring fan interest. If Sony wanted to use its stage to strike a deal with fans, this wouldn’t feel so wrong. But the Shenmue III Kickstarter was launched in an extremely misleading fashion. This isn’t “very much their project.” It’s Sony’s too, even if the company isn’t the lead partner.

Now that the misleading nature of the campaign has been exposed, Suzuki’s apology yesterday isn’t enough. Sony doesn’t typically talk project budgets, but Suzuki must. Backers have every right to ask the hard questions and demand transparency from a project manager, whether that person is an unknown developer with his or her first game or an industry monument like Yu Suzuki.

Despite the new information, the Shenmue III Kickstarter still carries a number of oddities. Ys Net says that $ 10 million from fans is required to fund an open world. Not only is this budget number disconnected from the reality of game development (and Shenmue's budget history), but no gaming Kickstarter has ever approached that amount. Koji Igarashi's Bloodstained set the record at just over $ 5.5 million when it closed earlier this month.  If fans knew how much Sony and other investors were ready to contribute against fan funding, perhaps there would be more confidence and trust built to reach that milestone. 

It’s time for Suzuki and Sony to come clean on the Shenmue III budget and financing arrangement. Stop taking advantage of backers’ nostalgia and a 14-year-old cliffhanger. – The Feed

Come Tour Jurassic Park In Latest Lego Jurassic World Trailer

The latest Lego Jurassic World trailer is all about eye candy, movie tie-ins, and getting you excited about hearing John Williams' score all over again. You'll also get to see Lego Chris Pratt, if that's a thing you're into.

WB Games is also reminding fans that there's some free DLC for pre-ordering. Digital pre-purchases on PlayStation systems get three characters (Dino Handler, Eric Kirby, and Paul Kirby) and the animal control vehicle.

On Xbox systems, you get the same quantity, but different content for pre-purchasing. The characters included are a Jurassic Park helicopter pilot, Lex Murphy, and Tim Murphy. The vehicle in this bundle is Iain Malcolm's San Diego cruiser.

Both of these will be available for purchase after June 12 for $ .99.

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Lego Jurassic World will be out on June 12 for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Vita, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U, 3DS, and PC. For more, check out a recent preview. – The Feed

Come to GDC Europe for tips on soft-launching your next mobile game

GDC Europe 2015 is months away, and conference organizers are highlighting two can’t-miss sessions on the process of soft-launching your iOS game and the trick to coding adaptive clothing systems for open-world games. …

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Developers come clean about the realities of crunch

Kotaku has published a thorough feature aimed at exposing crunch culture to a broader audience that features developers coming clean about how they had to crunch, or why they made others do so. …

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