Newest God of War Could Take Another Chance At Multiplayer

The new God of War installment could bring back one unexpected feature from God of War: Ascension.

The Sony Santa Monica Studio website has a job listing for a senior multiplayer programmer, calling for somebody who wants “all players to have the best possible shared experience”. The listing reveals as much detail about this theoretical multiplayer feature as you would expect; none. Game director Cory Barlog reportedly said that God of War would not include a multiplayer mode in the weeks after its big reveal at E3 2016.

That leaves us with three scenarios: either the initial reports were inaccurate, the studio has changed its mind, or the listing is related to another game that isn’t related to God of War.

Another thing to think about is many signs point to God of War being released this year. The senior multiplayer programmer listing was posted near the end of February, which would not leave the studio with much time to implement such a typically complex feature. Though it may just be filling a gap from a previous employee leaving, rather than staffing up an entirely new position.

God of War: Ascension’s multiplayer portion let players create their own mythological Greek heroes to slay monsters in competitive and cooperative modes. It did well enough bringing multiplayer to a series that had always been about narrative-driven, single-player monster slaying, but it didn’t make that big of a splash. The new God of War has a very different design from previous games, with an over-the-shoulder camera instead of a fixed, floating perspective, for example. So if it does indeed have a multiplayer, don’t expect it to share much in common with Ascension’s.

 

Project Scorpio Specs Announced

Microsoft has revealed fresh new tech specs about its upcoming upgraded Xbox One console, Project Scorpio.

According to a new report from Digital Foundry, the console’s specs are beyond what we’ve seen in the current console generation. Scorpio was able to run a Forza Motorsport demo at 60 FPS in seemingly native 4K, with graphical settings at an “Xbox One-equivalent” level. In terms of specs, the console boastsa 1 TB hard drive, as well as 12 GB of GGDR5 memory–the same type of RAM contained in the PlayStation 4, though Sony‘s device only contains 8 GB.

That 12 GB is split into two portions: 8 GB is accessible to developers, while 4 GB is reserved for system use. That’s an increase over Xbox One’s 8 GB overall memory, which was split the same way into portions of 5 GB and 3 GB, while GGDR5 represents a speed increase over Xbox One’s DDR3 RAM. Digital Foundry–which was shared this information by Microsoft itself–says Scorpio will run all Xbox One games “better,” whether they’re patched for the new console or not. This is because the console uses no emulation–Xbox One games will run natively using the system’s internal power.

Combined with a faster CPU, the result is a more stable or higher frame rate, no screen tearing, and faster load times. All of that is also reportedly true for backwards-compatible Xbox 360 games, even though changes in hardware between Xbox One and Project Scorpio mean Microsoft has had to go through each backwards-compatible Xbox 360 game individually to make them run on Scorpio.

The site says Scorpio’s internal design brief was to scale existing titles up to 4K–and this latest batch of information suggests Microsoft has succeeded. it should be noted, however, that the demo only contained one test version of an unconfirmed Forza game–though the build apparently was built using the same tech used to make Forza Motorsport 6. Additionally, titles that were originally 30 FPS will not go over that unless patched to do so, while the level of optimization seen in all titles could vary.

Users who own 1080p televisions will still be catered for, too: “ultra HD-rendering should super-sample down for those 1080p displays,” says the site, meaning games should look sharper, even if you don’t own a 4K set. Although no price has officially been confirmed, Digital Foundry and Eurogamer estimate from the specs they’ve seen that the console will cost US $499–the same price as the Xbox One at launch.

We already knew that Scorpio will boast six teraflops of performance–including 320 GB/s memory bandwidth and eight CPU cores–though the console will differ from Xbox One by reportedly not containing ESRAM. Microsoft says Scorpio is the most powerful console ever made and that it will be more powerful than the PlayStation 4 Pro, which came out last year. It will still support Xbox One games, controllers, and accessories.

The new console is due to launch this holiday, but it remains to be seen when Microsoft will start to officially show it off in more detail. Xbox boss Phil Spencer has said he is unsure if Microsoft will show off Project Scorpio before E3 in June, while also stating recently that he thinks it’s “critical” for first-party games to be ready for the system’s launch.

 

Spider-Man Still Happening in 2017

According to Ryan Penagos, VP and executive editor of Marvel Digital MediaInsomniac GamesPlayStation 4-exclusive Spider-Man title is still going to be released in 2017

Penagos was talking about Marvel’s recent video game output during a livestream and said “there’s even more on the horizon for 2017 like Spider-Man coming to PlayStation 4 and Marvel Vs. Capcom: Infinite coming to Xbox One, PS4, and PC.” Insomniac’s Spider-Man title was announced during E3 2016 but as of yet Insomniac, Sony, and Marvel have not officially announced a release date for the game.

Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures have partnered for Spider-Man: Homecoming, a new movie which is set to hit cinemas in July. Insomniac’s game isn’t tied into this movie, but would no doubt benefit from being released this year. However, as previously stated, an official release date has not yet been specified for the game. Spider-Man the game casts players as the iconic web-slinger in a completely original story. It takes place at a time when Peter Parker is “experienced” and “more masterful at fighting crime” in New York.

“From traversing with parkour and utilizing the environment, to new combat and blockbuster set pieces, it’s Spider-Man unlike any you’ve played before,” reads a line from the game’s description. Spider-Man, which is a working title for the PlayStation 4 game, is the first licensed game Insomniac has ever made. It is known most for the Ratchet and Clank series.

Are you still looking forward to the Spider-Man game?

 

Horizon Zero Dawn Gets Patch Work; 3D Audio Support Added

Guerrilla Games have a new update for Horizon Zero Dawn.

Patch 1.12 adds one new feature in the form of 3D Audio support for the 3D headset, while it also makes gameplay adjustments including performance improvements in several areas of the game. It also fixes bugs that could lead to problems for players that would not be able to progress further.

The update also makes a number of general fixes, including one for an issue where players could exploit Hunting Ground trials for resources and clears out a problem where the sound of destructible trees was not playing as it should.

Guerrilla Games also reminded players that they can try reloading one of their saves if they encounter any issues. For issues that persist, Guerrilla recommends that you take screenshots of the location where the bug popped up and your location on the map, and then send to the studio.

Here is the full list of what the update brings:

NEW FEATURES

  • Added 3D Audio support for 3D headsets.

ADJUSTMENTS

  • Improved Pathfinding to Quest markers and custom waypoints when players are on a mount.
  • Improved performance in several areas in the game.
  • Several improvements to the lightmap.

FIXES

Progression Fixes

  • Fixed an issue that some players might encounter in “The Point of the Spear” where players would be given an extra Carja Bow and Spear if Aloy died before talking to Rost.
  • Fixed an issue in “The Point of the Spear” which some players might encounter where the Sawtooth would no longer be present when players updated their game to Patch 1.10 during the ‘Kill the Sawtooth’ objective.
  • Fixed an issue in “Revenge of the Nora” where some players were able to bypass natural progression by entering the Metal Ring by jumping over the roots.
  • Fixed an issue in “The Sun Shall Fall” where finishing a weapon tutorial during the Glinthawk encounter and reloading would result in some players not being able to enter the gates and continue the quest.
  • Fixed an issue in “The Grave-Hoard” where completing a weapon tutorial during the Deathbringer encounter would prevent the Deathbringer from respawning when some players would reload the game.
  • Fixed an issue in “To Curse the Darkness” where certain players could climb the roots around the entrance of the cave and bypass natural progression of the quest.
  • Fixed an issue in “Deep Secrets of the Earth” where a few players were unable to enter the bunker after fast traveling during the animation of Aloy opening the vent.
  • Fixed an issue in “The Mountain That Fell” where some players were able to leave the boundaries of the world.
  • Fixed an issue in “Robbing the Rich” where certain players were not able to complete the quest when talking to Ravan.
  • Fixed an issue in “Fatal Inheritance” where Daradi would be missing after fast traveling away from the quest area, which resulted in some players not being able to complete the ‘Return to Daradi’ objective.
  • Fixed an issue in “A Moment’s Peace” where for some players the quest objective would be updated to “Return to Vilgund” after completing the quest, even though players did not meet Vilgund yet.
  • Fixed an issue in “Collateral” where a few players wouldn’t be able to complete the ‘Talk to Olin and Enasha’ objective because Enasha would not wait in the Farm.
  • Fixed an issue in “Cause for Concern” where completing Bandit Camps in a specific order would result in a few players not being able to interact with Nil to complete the quest.
  • Fixed an issue in Cauldron Xi where certain players were able to bypass natural progression of the quest by escaping the core chamber during the ‘Defend the Core’ objective.
  • Fixed an issue in the weapon tutorial for the War Bow, where using the Lodge War Bow would not tally towards any of the War Bow tutorials.

General Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where Patch 1.10 did not offer a retroactive solution for some players who encountered an issue with a Tallneck’s datapoint that did not unlock when they had fast-traveled away while on top of the Tallneck instead of rappelling down. Players who encountered this, should revisit the Tallneck again and leave the area to unlock the datapoint.
  • Fixed an issue where some players would have the issue of wielded Heavy Weapons getting stuck on Aloy’s arm when interacting with the elevator in Meridian.
  • Fixed an issue where for a few players the awareness icons and tags would become invisible when the game saves while a Watcher uses the FlashStun attack on Aloy.
  • Fixed an issue where some players would spawn in the mountains when fast-traveling to the center of Sunfall.
  • Fixed an issue where after completing “Revenge of the Nora”, Varl would have a wrong dialogue.
  • Fixed an issue where a few players were able to call a mount during the fight with Helis in “The Face of Extinction”.
  • Fixed an issue in “The Forgotten” where the prompt to interact with Olara was visible when Olara was not at that location.
  • Fixed an issue where the quest marker for “Underequipped” would disappear from the map when leaving the starting area of the quest.
  • Fixed an issue in “Death from the Skies” where the ‘Kill the Stormbird’ objective would not have a quest marker.
  • Fixed an issue where overridden bridges in Cauldron Rho would not be visible when some players were standing at a certain distance.
  • Fixed an issue where a few players were able to exploit Hunting Ground trials for resources.
  • Fixed an issue where for some the sound of destructible trees was not playing.
  • Fixed an issue with Pathfinder enabled for a custom waypoint when standing on the bridge of the Two Teeth Bandit Camp.
  • Fixed an issue where the soundtrack would start over during the Credits.
  • Fixed an issue where on some occasions Aloy would not place a trap when players wanted to.
  • Fixed an issue where on some occasions Aloy would grab her spear instead of placing a trap.
  • Fixed various LOD issues.
  • Fixed various issues of players getting stuck in geometry.
  • Fixed various issues of players accessing areas outside of the play area.

Crash Fixes

  • Fixed an issue in “The City of the Sun” where in some occasions the game would crash when Aloy and Erend arrive at Olin’s house.
  • Fixed an issue where the game would crash when some players fast-travelled during one of Aloy’s animations in the bunker she fell into when she was a child.
  • Fixed various miscellaneous crashes.

 

 

Star Wars Battlefront II Officially Announced For 2017

EA has announced the next Star Wars Battlefront game, as well as offered official confirmation of its final title: Star Wars Battlefront II.

The full reveal will come on Saturday, April 15th, at 2:30 p.m., as part of that week’s Star Wars Celebration festivities in Orlando, Florida. A trailer and first details will arrive during a special panel called “The Galaxywide Premiere of Star Wars Battlefront II,” so we’re likely to get some firm details and discussion, rather than just a quick glimpse at the game. The only real visual released alongside the announcement is the new logo. Not exactly exciting, but something to hold you over for the next few weeks:

Star-Wars-Battlefront-II-logo

EA hasn’t exactly been coy about its plans to deliver a follow-up to Star Wars Battlefront, confirming the game was in development and briefly showing off some concept art during E3 2016. In addition, the publisher has discussed the project during investor calls, sharing a few scant details about what we can expect in the process. The sequel will include content from multiple eras, including the new trilogy of films, with a “dramatically larger” scope, and quite possibly a full single-player experience.

In addition to the showing at Star Wars Celebration, Battlefront II will also be on display at EA Play, the even the publisher’s runs alongside E3 in June. Star Wars Battlefront II launches this holiday season, presumably on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

PlayStation Drops Prices On Sony Exclusives

Sony’s latest set of deals on the PlayStation Store, the “Only on PlayStation” sale, offers discounts on, you guessed it, exclusive to Sony platforms.

Discounts of up to 80 percent are available on games for every Sony system, from the original PlayStation all the way up to the PlayStation 4. In all, more than 100 titles are on sale. Highlights from the sale include deals on all three of thatgamecompany’s games —Flow, Flower and Journey — and on fan-favorite Sony franchises like Uncharted, Infamous, God of War and Sly Cooper. Here’s some specific game deals below. None of these deals require a PlayStation Plus membership, although there are deeper discounts available in some cases for subscribers.

 

  • God Hand – $2.49, 75 percent off
  • Twisted Metal: Black – $2.49, 75% off
  • Uncharted 2: Among Thieves GOTY Edition – $4.99, 50% off
  • God of War Collection – $3.74, 75% off
  • Journey Collector’s Edition – $12.49, 50% off
  • Tokyo Jungle – $3.99, 80% off
  • Ratchet & Clank Collection – $7.99, 60% off

The Only on PlayStation sale runs for one week, from now until 11 a.m. ET on March 28.

 

PS3 Production Ending In Japan

Sony is ending production of PlayStation 3 units soon in Japan. The console’s entry on PlayStation’s official Japanese website has been updated to read, “Shipments are scheduled to end soon.”

This doesn’t mean global production will stop any time soon. While Japanese and western consumers are typically quick to adopt new technology, other parts of the world are slower to receive new hardware. For example, while the PS3 came to Japan and North America in November 2006, it didn’t launch in Brazil until 2010, so production could be expected to continue for some time there.

Much of the PS3’s early life wasn’t ideal due to a high retail price and reports that it was difficult to develop for, but the console enjoyed a re-emergence of sorts later on thanks to high-quality exclusive titles like Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Journey, LittleBigPlanet, and The Last of Us. Sony also released revised versions of the console: the Slim model launched in 2009 before a Super Slim edition followed in 2012. The device was replaced by the PlayStation 4 in 2013.

It remains to be seen when the PS3 will cease production in the west.