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Campaign mode removed from last-gen versions of Black Ops 3

Activision has announced that Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of Black Ops 3 will feature “multiplayer and zombies gameplay only.” …

Gamasutra News

Halo 5’s Breakout eSports Mode Gets Revamped Before Launch

If you played the Halo 5: Guardians beta in December or January, you had a chance to give the new Breakout mode a try. It’s designed with eSports in mind, with quick, single-elimination rounds. When you play next month, it’s going to be a little different.

343 Industries watched players during the beta and noticed that a number of rounds were ending in ties. When teams were down to their last player, it wasn’t uncommon to see the survivor hiding from opposing forces.

In order to combat this, 343 added a flag to the mode. Now, rounds can be won either by eliminating the other four-person team or running the flag into their base. 

During our time with the mode, two of about thirty rounds ended with a flag capture. The others ended as you would expect, though some of the conclusions were forced by someone making an unsuccessful flag run.

The change doesn’t play a big part in the early part of a round, but I expect players will begin incorporating the flag into their strategies quickly. It accomplishes the desired effect, but more importantly, it shows one of the reasons why having an early beta can be beneficial to design as well as server testing.

For more on Halo 5: Guardians, check out our coverage of the campaign from last week’s preview event. – 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

We Go Hands-On With Telltale And Mojang’s Minecraft: Story Mode

Exploration is a key element of Mojang’s wildly popular Minecraft. From the first moments players step into the game, they can explore the world, as well as how they can use the world’s natural resources to their advantage. Perhaps the most compelling aspect, however, is the exploration of the player’s creativity. In spite of all of this, one area remained largely unexplored in the video game: the story.

With Minecraft: Story Mode, Telltale and Mojang have worked together to fill that narrative-shaped hole in a way that is satisfying and enjoyable for fans of both studios’ work. Novelists and fan-fiction authors have attempted to chisel a story out of the rich Minecraft universe, but Telltale’s collaboration with Mojang is the first time that a cohesive arc has been attempted in any official capacity. 

During my hands-on time with a demo of Minecraft: Story Mode, I was given a highly abridged tour of the first episode. Story Mode stars stars Jesse, a reluctant hero who can take on one of six different looks across different skin tones and genders depending on what the player wants. The first scene had me tracking Jesse’s pet pig Reuben. I guide Jesse along the pig tracks, searching a large area as I close in on Reuben’s location. Unfortunately, as soon as Jesse reunites with Reuben, a group of creepers, zombies, and spiders close in on their location. 

Jesse unsheathes his wooden sword and begins defending his beloved Reuben. The zombies approach first, sending me into an action sequence where I press a button when they get close enough. After vanquishing a few zombies, Jesse’s cheap wooden sword shatters, leaving him vulnerable. With Jesse realizing that they are about to be overtaken, I’m prompted to devise a plan of escape. While the choice seems like a typical Telltale decision tree moment, the execution of the plan is interrupted as Jesse’s friend Petra swoops in and saves the two.

The next scene flashes ahead to a moment where Petra and Jesse discuss the wither skull she procured. She claims to have arranged to trade it to someone at the upcoming EnderCon in exchange for a diamond, but the whole situation seems fishy. From there, the scene demonstrates Story Mode’s take on crafting, as Jesse builds a stone sword from two cobblestones and a stick. In this situation, I was provided the ingredients, but it was up to me to arrange them in the correct way on the crafting table.

The story flashes ahead yet again. Something terrible has happened at the aforementioned EnderCon, and the entire attendee-base is fleeing in horror. It doesn’t take long for me to figure out why – a giant, three-headed beast emerges from the venue and floats menacingly toward the terrified crowd. Could this have been the result of whatever suspicious situation Petra got herself into with the wither skull? The answer isn’t clear in this demo. The beast emits a tractor beam, which pulls in anything and anyone unfortunate enough to be in its way. While it seems likely that you could face off against this beast in some capacity in the future, my only option at this juncture is to run.

Jesse and his friends see their window to escape and take it. As Jesse runs alongside the rest of the fleeing attendees, I’m tasked with guiding his path. Any obstacle I’m unable to evade in time with horizontal movement throws a quick-time event my way. I pressed each button command with no problem, causing Jesse to successfully escape.

The group reconvenes in a shelter. An inactive portal seems like the only hope for safety. Jesse lights the portal and the group eagerly jumps in. A hardened warrior named Gabriel confronts Jesse about his destiny in helping resolve the issues causing this invasion, but before the conversation ends, the monster’s giant tentacles smash through the walls and the tractor beam begins abducting Gabriel and Petra. Though both are floating away, I only have time to save one. I choose Petra, which leaves Gabriel to float off into the distance. Petra is safe, but before Jesse is able to escape, one of the monster’s tentacles whacks him hard, sending him flying into the portal as the screen cuts to black.

Even as someone with little more than a passing interest in Minecraft, Story Mode brought a smile to my face a few times over the course of my demo. The characters are well-written, and the voice cast, which features the likes of Patton Oswalt, Catherine Taber, Brian Posehn, Ashley Johnson, Dave Fennoy, Billy West, and Paul Reubens, does an excellent job of bringing the characters to life.

Minecraft: Story Mode looks to deliver the traditional Telltale experience within the constructs of the Minecraft universe. Time will show if Telltale can differentiate its latest project enough from its other licensed franchises to give it its own unique hook outside of the Minecraft name, but for now, we're optimistic. Minecraft: Story Mode is set to launch this fall. – The Feed

Star Wars: Battlefront’s Drop Zone Mode Pits Teams Of Eight In A Race To Capture Objectives

Star Wars: Battlefront is shaping up to have all the modes you’d expect from a shooter (like the recently revealed Blast deathmatch mode). The latest to be revealed is “Drop Zone,” which pits two teams of eight against each other in a race for capture points.

Players won’t know where they’ll be needed, though. Pods fall from the sky, marking the next point of interest. Once captured, the pods slowly open delivering a power up to the team in control.

Modes move quickly, lasting no more than 10 minutes. They can be ended faster if one team manages to control five pods.

Turrets and droids are available to create some variety as players scramble to clear out enemy forces and take control of the points. No video is available of the mode yet, but Star Wars: Battlefront is due out on November 17 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.

[Source: EA] – The Feed

Oculus Rift SDK gets performance boost: ‘Direct Driver Mode’ unlocked

Latency is the enemy of virtual reality development, and Oculus has convinced both AMD and Nvidia to collaborate on a new mode that offers more horsepower. …

Gamasutra News

Telltale Comes To PAX With Tales From The Borderlands Live Playthrough And Playable Minecraft: Story Mode

Telltale has unveiled its PAX Prime lineup, which features Tales from the Borderlands and Minecraft: Story Mode.

The latest episode of Tales from the Borderlands, Escape Plan Bravo, will be played in front of a live audience at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, in the Wyvern Theater. Members of the development team will be there, along with voice actors Laura Bailey (Fiona) and Mikey Neumann (Scooter).

For those interested in Telltale's more elusive Minecraft: Story Mode, the beta version of the first episode will be available to play at booth #3117. This will be the first public hands-on time with the game, and there will be more to see outside of last month's Minecon trailer. Telltale is also bringing four unique shirt designs, one for each day of the show. Playing the beta will get you the shirt for that day. Return on a different day wearing a previous day's shirt, and you might be able to score the current day's shirt without even playing the beta again.

Stay tuned for more PAX coverage when the show opens this Friday.


Our Take
I'm sure players want to see more of Minecraft: Story Mode after the surprisingly dramatic trailer from Minecon. I've scratched my head at Telltale's choice to adapt Minecraft, of all things, but getting hands-on time could shed valuable light on what exactly the developer is aiming to do with the property. – The Feed

Warhammer 40,000: Deathwatch Will Receive Free Head-To-Head Multiplayer Mode

The God-Emperor has commanded that the Xenos threat be eradicated. In Rodeo Games’ Warhammer 40,000: Deathwatch, that means sending your Deathwatch Space Marines into battle to exterminate a Tyranid infestation.

Of course, Space Marines don’t go into battle green and untested. And that’s where the free multiplayer expansion comes in.

You and your opponent will assemble your squads (comprised of Space Marines and wargear unlocked through play or in-app pack purchases). From there, you can either play a “live” multiplayer game or engage in asynchronous play.

Rodeo Games says the multiplayer mode will be coming in the next couple of weeks. If you’re interested in getting started with Deathwatch to prepare, It’s on sale now through the end of the week for $ 2.99.


Our Take
I’ve been playing this and like it quite a lot. It’s inspired me to dive deeper into the Warhammer 40K lore, which I assure you is the deepest of rabbit holes. I haven’t purchased any miniatures, though… yet. – The Feed

Final Fantasy VII Launches On iOS Today Complete With God Mode Cheat

Last December at PlayStation Experience, Sony and Square Enix announced a port of Final Fantasy VII for PlayStation 4. Today, we have good news and bad news. There’s a port out today, but it isn’t on PS4.

Square has launched an iOS version that includes a couple of additional features not found in the original. You can completely turn off random battles to hit the story points and narratively critical fights.

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Of course, if you do that, you won’t be able to level up. To fix that Square Enix has included a “max stats” option to make your characters unstoppable.

The North American App Store hasn’t updated with the game yet. Based on other Square Enix iOS ports, expect this to be priced in the neighborhood of $ 15.

We’ll update when it becomes available in the States.


Our Take
Square Enix isn’t going to stop releasing its classics on mobile devices at ultra-premium prices any time soon. The question is whether you really want to play this now with a virtual gamepad, wait for the PlayStation 4 port, or hold out for the complete remake announced at E3. – The Feed

Valve And Star Wars Episode VII Production Company Bad Robot Team Up For Team Fortress 2 Mode

Team Fortress 2 is getting a new mode care of Bad Robot, the production company behind projects like Lost, Star Trek, Cloverfield, and the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII.

The mode, which is currently available in beta, is called PASS Time, and is being developed by Escalation Studios under the direction of Bad Robot. The mode has more in common with traditional sports as players pass a ball back and forth and try to score goals. The carrier of the ball is also given a number of bonuses like speed and health boosts, as well as temporary invulnerability when the ball is stolen from an opponent. You can can find the fill details of the mode, and how to download it, by heading here.

This isn't the first time Bad Robot has teamed with Valve. Valve's Gabe Newell and Bad Robot's J.J. Abrams appeared on stage together at GDC in 2013, and in October 2010, Valve released an interactive teaser promoting Abrams' film, Super 8.

[Source: Team Fortress 2]


Our Take
These two have been teasing collaboration for years, but have so far only released a handful of small projects. It seems like the two are building to something, but I can't tell what it is. – The Feed