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Be Seen, Not Heard: Naughty Dog Dev Diary Explains the Clickers

28 February 2013 8:30 AM, PST

By Joseph Leray

The scariest thing about “Killer7” wasn’t that the Heaven Smile enemies were invisible or bloodthirsty terrorists, it’s that they emitted a blood-chilling cackling laugh before blowing themselves to smithereens. “BioShock”’s Splicers were equally vocal: I always heard their crazed muttering before I saw them, and it always set me on edge.

If “The Last of Us” is as atmospheric and tense as Naughty Dog promise, Clickers will carry those previous games’ torch as harbingers of fear. As Neal Druckmann, creative director for Naughty Dog, explains in this developer diary, Clickers are infected humans who have been totally blinded by an aggressive, parasitic fungus and who use echolocation to find prey.

As players explore the ruined world of the “The Last of Us,” those throaty clicks will let them know a Clicker is nearby, which is bad news for anyone interested in keeping their face and torso in one piece. »

- MTV Video Games

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Nintendo eShop Update 2.28.12

28 February 2013 7:09 AM, PST

Nintendo adds new games and content to the Nintendo eShop for Wii U and 3Ds every week, and every week we grab all the info and put it right here, so you can stay up to speed on all of Nintendo's digital offerings.

This week, "Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate" gets a demo for 3Ds, while the Wii U is introduced to "Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien." Wii is also getting some love, as "Retro City Rampage" has landed on the Wii Shop Channel. Also, you may want to keep in mind that it's your last chance to pick some free Dlc for "Fire Emblem: Awakening."

From Nintendo:

Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3Ds™

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate – Demo Version – Set 25 years after the events of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, this new game reveals the story of Gabriel Belmont's descendants, as they »

- Don Hatfield

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eigoMANGA's Fighting Game 'Vanguard Princess' Could Be This Year's 'Skullgirls'

27 February 2013 3:00 PM, PST

That is, if it wasn't released back in 2009 by "King of Fighters Ex: Neo Blood" designer and former Capcom developer Tomoaki Sugeno (aka Suge9). But eigoMANGA has published in English here in the States for the first time this week for the PC, and it's your chance to check this quirky but great-looking two-on-two fighter out.

The downloadable fighter at least looks nice, and according to its official page, all proceeds will go to continuing recovery efforts from the 2011 quake in Japan. I guess what I dig most about this anime-inspired fighter (I'm going to check out a copy and the demo is available now) is how it's from the "sexy girl" genre without being overtly creepy like say, "Queens Blade."

No, I will not point you to "Queens Blade" links. You can find it yourself, but it's grubby, joyless, and sordid.

More than anything else, I'm just happy to »

- Charles Webb

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'Guardians of Middle-Earth' Gets Survival Mode, New Map

27 February 2013 2:40 PM, PST

Warner Bros. and Monolith have revealed a new update coming to "Guardians of Middle-Earth" on PS3 and Xbox 360. Not only does it introduce a new co-op Survival Mode, it also delivers a new map for the game's one-lane versus mode.

Survival Mode delivers one to five player co-op combat within the Glittering Caves deep inside the White Mountains. Players will have to look to their friends as they fight to survive wave after wave of enemies that become increasingly difficult. You'll defend towers, fight enemies and defeat bosses to complete new challenges.

In addition to Survival mode, gamers can also play on the one-lane map with the new "Goblin-town" map skin, which tosses players into the dark tunnels within the Misty Mountains, near the dwelling of the Witch-king.

There's no specific release date for the new content, but Monolith says it's "coming soon." According to Joystiq, the Survival mode will »

- Don Hatfield

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Win A 'Game of Thrones' or 'Tomb Raider' Xbox 360 During Swagfest!

27 February 2013 2:15 PM, PST

Are you ready to win one of the awesome Xbox 360 consoles seen above? I certainly hope so, because Microsoft's newest contest is a breeze to enter. Also, anyone who doesn't want a "Game of Thrones" Xbox 360 sitting next to their TV is absolutely crazy.

In addition to the "Game of Thrones" box, Microsoft is also offering up custom-skinned boxes highlighting "Tomb Raider," "Gears of War Judgment," "BioShock Infinite" and "Splinter Cell: Blacklist."

So, how do you get your own? Like many Xbox sweepstakes you'll first have to download the corresponding Gamer Pic. After that you'll have two choices – play an online multiplayer session of "Halo 4," "Gears of War 3" or "Tomb Raider" when it lands on March 5th, or download the HBO Go app.

When the sweepstakes ends on March 11th, five winners will be chosen to win one of the custom Xbox 360 consoles. To increase your chances, each participant has »

- Don Hatfield

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Just Roll With It In This 'Mars: War Logs' Combat Trailer

27 February 2013 1:30 PM, PST

Roy, the hero of the third-person action RPG from developer Spiders and Focus Home Interactive, ducks and rolls around Mars in this combat trailer for "Mars: War Logs."

French developer Spiders (who also worked on the ambitious but clunky "Of Orcs and Men" with Cyanide Studio) developed "Mars: War Logs" using their Silk Engine, and it's a good-looking game based on this video and the screens that have been released so far. The character detail is nice, particularly the run-down but elaborate future tech of the Martian colony.

As for the combat, while it's not easy to tell based on video alone, the evasion-heavy rolling and dodging could be kind of interesting if Spiders was able to find some nuance beyond "press bumper to get out of the way."

The downloadable title will be available via Psn, Xbla, and on the PC sometime this year.

From the official synopsis:

Over »

- Charles Webb

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Epic Announces 'Gears of War: Judgment' Season Pass Will Include Two Add-On Packs and Permanent Double Xp Boost

27 February 2013 12:15 PM, PST

By Joseph Leray

“Gears of War: Judgment,” the People Can Fly-developed follow-up to the long-running active-reloading sim, will have a Season Pass, according to Epic Games. The pass will cost 1600 Microsoft Points ($19.99) and give players access to at least two unannounced packs of post-launch content.

While details are scarce, the two Dlc packs covered by the Season Pass include six multiplayer maps and two new modes, as well as some weapon and armor skins to customize your in-game Locust-slaughtering golem. According to Epic, buying a Season Pass gets you a 20% discount compared to buying each add-on individually, as well as early access to new multiplayer maps.

Furthermore, Maxim is sponsoring two more maps (Capitol and Haven, pictured above), and “Judgment”’s “Execution” mode, the series standby mode in which players must use elaborate executions -- think the curb stomp, or Torque bow decapitation -- to eliminate enemies. Epic confirmed to »

- MTV Video Games

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Strong 'Brütal Legend' Sales on PC Could Lead to More Multiplayer Content, says Double Fine

27 February 2013 11:40 AM, PST

By Joseph Leray

Three and a half years after “Brütal Legend” was released on consoles, Double Fine self-published a PC version of the quirky rock-opera earlier this month. If it sells well, Double Fine boss and fabled designer Tim Schafer would “love” to release more multiplayer content for it.

“It’s actually been fun to continue work on it,” Schafer told Rock, Paper, Shotgun in a recent interview. “I mean, we have a wishlist from when we made this version. But since we are a small developer publishing it ourselves, we have to go with the best version we can make and then hope it’s successful so we can add more.”

“There’s a whole list of smaller ones to things like entire playable factions we didn’t get into the first game,” he continued. “Stuff like that. Depending on how much money we make, we can keep going with that. »

- MTV Video Games

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Got $100? Idw's Dropping Massive 'Transformers: Fall of Cybertron' Art Book In April

27 February 2013 11:00 AM, PST

I'm not gonna lie: I covet this oversized hardcover from publisher Idw, but I wouldn't even know when I'd have time to pore through it. Still, that doesn't make me wish that I could get my hands on one of the 250 copies of "Transformers: The Art of the Fall of Cybertron," based on last summer's game from High Moon Studios and publisher Activision.

"The Art of the Fall of Cybertron" is being released as part of Idw's Red Label line of limited-run, premium books, high-end reprints and hardcovers priced north of $100 (this is one of the cheaper ones, considering its availability). I have one of their reprints of the Eastman/Laird "Ninja Turtles" from last year that's absolutely a prize of my comics collection.

Idw, who currently hold the "Transformers" comics license, have teamed up with High Moon Studios to present concept art and process work for "Fall of Cybertron" in a chunky, »

- Charles Webb

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Angry Birds Cartoon Premieres The Weekend Of March 16th

27 February 2013 10:25 AM, PST

Well, we knew it would happen sooner or later, and Rovio recently revealed that their Angry Birds cartoon will premiere the weekend of March 16th. Dubbed "Angry Birds Toons," the series seems to take place on Pig Island, which is surely full of egg-nabbing swine.

What we find most interesting about the trailer above is the fact that it doesn't tell us where the animated series will premiere. The Angry Birds Twitter account says "distribution channels will be available later," so only time will tell I suppose.

In addition to the upcoming "Toons," let's not forget that Rovio also has an "Angry Birds" feature film on the way. Slated for 2016, the Angry Birds movie already has two producers attached for development. The first being David Maisel, who's known for his work on “Iron Man,” and the latter being John Cohen, who helped bring us "Despicable Me."

What are your thoughts »

- Don Hatfield

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Poke-fans: Viz Announces Three New Pokemon Manga For 2013

27 February 2013 9:45 AM, PST

The first title, "Pokemon the Movie: Kyurem vs. the Sword of Justice" is out next week with two titles to follow in the summer from the vikids line.

If "The Movie" in the title wasn't clear enough, "Kyurem vs. the Sword of Justice" is based on the 2012 feature which made its U.S. debut on Cartoon Network back in December. From the official synopsis for the March 5 manga:

Keldeo is determined to become a Sword of Justice, but to do so he must defeat Kyurem, one of the most powerful Dragon-type Pokémon in the world. Keldeo challenges Kyurem, unleashing a destructive force even Ash and Pikachu may be powerless to stop!

Trainers Black, White, Gold, and Silver get their own spotlight stories in "Pokemon Adventures: Black & White Manga vol. 1" (July 2), and "Pokemon Adventures: Heartgold and Soulsilver Manga vol. 1" August 6, the first book introducing its pair of trainers while the second »

- Charles Webb

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Capcom's 'Remember Me' June Release Announcement Yields A New Trailer

27 February 2013 9:10 AM, PST

The Dontnod-developed futuristic action game is coming to consoles and the PC on June 4, and Capcom is taking you to New Paris of 2084 in this great-looking and terribly narrated story trailer.

Seriously, he sounds like an alarm company pitch man or something.

From the official synopsis:

Neo-Paris. 2084.

Personal memories can now be digitized, bought, sold and traded. The last remnants of privacy and intimacy have been swept away in what appears to be a logical progression of the explosive growth of social networks at the beginning of the 21st century. The citizens themselves have accepted this surveillance society in exchange for the comfort only smart technology can provide. This memory economy gives immense power over society to just a handful of people.

Remember Me is a 3rd person action adventure where players take on the role of Nilin, a former elite memory hunter with the ability to break into people »

- Charles Webb

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'Darksiders,' 'Destroy All Humans' Join Thq Assets Sale Part Deux

27 February 2013 8:30 AM, PST

Thq (or what's left of it) has announced their intention to sell of the remainder of their intellectual property in an April auction. The sale would include the rights to Vigil's "Darksiders," tactical shooter "Full Spectrum Warrior," and "Destroy All Humans" across six lots that include original and licensed IP.

Thq is requiring interested parties to submit their bids by April 1, with final bids to be submitted by the 15th. Thq will, of course, vet the bidders (making sure they have the money and resources to back the transaction and in some cases handle any outstanding financial obligations for those licenses) before consulting with their own creditors to get the go-ahead for the sale.

Hit the jump to see the full list of IP going on sale in April (list via Joystiq).

It's worth remembering in the initial $100 million fire sale for Thq's assets that studios and IP were sold »

- Charles Webb

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Conan O'brien: 'It Should Be Laura Croft!'

26 February 2013 3:30 PM, PST

"Yeah, that's my instinct when trapped in a confined space: to light everything on fire."

Conan O'Brien snarks his way through the early chapters of "Tomb Raider" and he's pretty convinced Lara is trying to hold in a big Mexican lunch in his latest "Clueless Gamer" video.

So here's a weird thing: "Tomb Raider" is supposed to serve as Crystal Dynamics' reintroduction of Lara Craft without all of the hypersexualized baggage of her PSOne incarnation, but all host Conan O'Brien can do is crack on the (admittedly unintentional) T&A aspects of his hands-on time with the action adventure game. O'Brien's just doing a whole lecherous goon schtick but it brings to mind the uncomfortable early positioning of "Tomb Raider" as a game where players have to protect a "weak" Lara from sexual assault.

The M-rated title sees Croft taking her knocks in a low-cut top following her ship's crashing »

- Charles Webb

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James Bond's Wheels, An Airport Coming To 'Need For Speed: Most Wanted' In New Dlc

26 February 2013 3:05 PM, PST

New cars, challenges, and a whole airport section are available now for the Criterion-developed racer.

"Most Wanted" is adding three new Dlc packs--"Terminal Velocity," "Heroes," and "Movie Legends"--to the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC versions of the game. So if you wanted to drive Burt Reynolds' Trans Am from "Smokey & The Bandit," you're in luck with the "Movie Legends" Dlc, while the "Heroes" pack brings back some favorite cars from "Need for Speeds" past.

The biggest addition, though, is the "Terminal Velocity" Dlc, which drops the new location of Hughes International Airport into the fine city of Fairhaven. The new location includes more vehicles, as well as 136 new multiplayer milestones, 10 new multiplayer speedlists, 40 new billboards, and eight new achievements.

The three Dlc packs are available now on Xbox Live and Psn, with Terminal Velocity priced at 1200 Ms points/$14.99, and Heroes/Movie Legends priced at 800 Points/$10 each. Or you »

- Charles Webb

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All PlayStation 4 Games Will Be Available Digitally

26 February 2013 2:30 PM, PST

With the release of the Wii U, Nintendo has further embraced digital games sales alongside traditional retail, and Sony apparently plans to do the same with the release of PlayStation 4. In fact, Sony's Shuhei Yoshida recently revealed that all PlayStation 4 games will be available as digital downloads.

Speaking with The Guardian, Yoshida said "We're shifting our platform more and more to the digital side. PS4 will be similar to Ps Vita in that every game will be available as a digital download, and some will also be available as a disc.

"The Witness will be a digital release and because of the flexibility of the digital distribution scheme, we can have more small games that might be free or available for a couple of dollars, or different services like free-to-play or subscription models."

Personally, I prefer being able to physically hold something if I'm going to spend $60 on it. Thankfully, »

- Don Hatfield

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Spacewar!: 'Mass Effect 3: Reckoning' Trailer Shows Off New Multiplayer Characters and Weapons

26 February 2013 2:05 PM, PST

By Joseph Leray

BioWare has released a trailer for “Mass Effect 3: Reckoning,” the team’s final piece of free multiplayer content. In a livestream playthrough of the Dlc, BioWare also detailed the updated characters, weapons, and gear being added.

The trailer shows off some of the new characters -- a Geth Juggernaut, a (female) Turian Vanguard, the Edi-like Alliance Infiltration Unit, a Krogan Warlord, and a Talon Engineer -- facing off against a group of Reaper Brutes and Banshees.

New weapons include the Geth Spitfire (a portable Gatling Gun), the Venom Shotgun, and the Bloodpack Executioner Pistol. Among the new gadgets and equipment on offer, you can expect to find amplifiers for sub-machine guns and pistols, ultralight materials for shotguns and assault rifles, and the Batarian Gauntlet, which replaces any heavy melee attack with the Batarian’s signature punch.

“Reckoning,” available today on PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360, is the last planned content pack, »

- MTV Video Games

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'Lego Batman 2' Announced For The Wii U With GamePad Support

26 February 2013 1:40 PM, PST

In a press release this morning, Warner Bros. and Tt Games announced that not only would "Lego Batman 2: DC Superheroes" be making its way to the Wii U, but that when it hits Nintendo's new console this spring, it would support the off-tv GamePad mode--a feature which should really be part of just about every release that doesn't use the controller for any kind of dedicated functionality

The spring release will also allow a second player to jump into co-op using the GamePad.

If you didn't get to check it out last summer, "Lego Batman 2" teams the Caped Crusader up with the heroes of the DC Universe after presidential candidate Lex Luthor uses the services of the Joker to concoct a formula that can eradicate all black blocks from the Lego world. It's Tt Games' first fully-voiced title, bringing some animated DC Universe alumni like "Superman: The Animated Series »

- Charles Webb

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New Video Game Releases For The Week Of 2/26: A Ninja's Black Ops Odyssey In Predatorland

26 February 2013 1:10 PM, PST

A light week for major console releases, although the 3Ds and Vita will get their own massive RPG and hack and slash remakes respectively. Plus, "Halo 4" and "Black Ops 2" get content updates with new map packs.

Title: "Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan"

Platform(s): 3Ds

This Atlus-published RPG seems like a mix of Norse mythology and high-fantasy tropes, putting players in the role of an explorer traveling to Yggdrasil, the World Tree in the hopes of finding fame and fortune in the world of Tharsis.

It looks like standard Jrpg fare with 3D monsters roaming the forest and making life a challenge for your nameless hero, with the bonus addition of a skyship to carry you and your party around Tharsis in search of more adventure.

Title: "Nija Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus"

Platform(s): Ps Vita

Team Ninja is promising a host of new features for the »

- Charles Webb

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Telltale Has More 'Walking Dead' Coming Before Season 2

26 February 2013 12:40 PM, PST

Chances are we'll be waiting some time to get a look at season two of Telltale's "The Walking Dead." However, writer Gary Whitta recently teased that more Walking Dead is in production, and it we may be playing again before season 2 arrives.

Speaking during a recent interview on IGN, Whitta said "I can tell you what you already know, which is season two is coming. There’s not much to say because it really is very early in the process, were just starting to talk about it, it's a way off. But, knowing that it's a way off, and knowing that people are hungry for more Walking Dead...there may very well be more Walking Dead from Telltale before season two. We may have a little something extra for you between season one and two."

While Whitta didn't have any details to share on what exactly this secret Walking Dead something may be, »

- Don Hatfield

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