Skyrim Dawnguard Trailer

This morning brings us the first trailer for The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim DLC, Dawnguard. Looks like we’ve got vamps in the hizzy, and from the sound of the narration you’ll have the option of joining them or suiting up with the Dawnguard to stop them. This one actually interests me a bit; probably not enough to actually play more Skyrim, but it looks rather cool.

Thursday Morning News Brief

I’m going to pull an Abner here and list a couple of news briefs for things that went down last night or yesterday. I could turn this into several posts, but I have things to do. And by “things” I mean absolutely nothing of consequence.

Above is the new Quantum Conundrum trailer. Quantum Conundrum is the physics puzzler helmed by Kim Swift, she of Portal fame. Square Enix is one of my last appointments at E3 and if this trailer is any indication, my already meager brainpower, further sapped by three days of E3, probably will not be enough to handle this game. That being said, that fuzzy dude looks rad.

More news after the break…

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Dragon’s Dogma in Review

Had Dragon’s Dogma presented itself as a Japanese-style action game with light RPG trappings, I might be writing today about one of my favorite games of 2012. With a development team including alumni from some of the better Resident Evil and Devil May Cry titles, it’s a game with a great pedigree and huge ambition. Brilliant ideas abound like the Pawn concept, which essentially simulates playing a MMORPG asynchronously with vaguely intelligent party members that learn how to fight more effectively over time and speak incessantly in a faux archaic patois. If your main Pawn gets hired by another player, he or she comes back with items or knowledge about quests or how to deal with certain monsters. There’s an excellent item enhancement system that’s as streamlined and straightforward as any I’ve seen, there are well-designed dungeons rich with atmosphere, and you’d be hard pressed to find a more exciting video game moment than scaling a hydra wound around a watchtower to lop off its head. Continue Reading…

Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault Incoming

It’s been quite some time since we’ve had a proper Ratchet & Clank game on the PS3. Sure, All 4 One was technically a Ratchet & Clank game, but so was that weird gladiator game and I had no interest in either. Yes, folks, I am hereby classifying Ratchet & Clank games as real or unreal based on my interest. My ego, it is large.

Any way, Insomniac hasn’t forgotten about everyone’s favorite space faring duo announcing today that they’re working on Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault a “fun sized” entry into the series, releasing this fall to coincide with Ratchet & Clank’s 10th Anniversary celebration. I have no idea what “fun sized” actually means, if it will be roughly on par with Quest for Booty, but given that Full Frontal will be downloadable only, same as Quest for Booty was, I’m assuming yes. I quite enjoyed Quest for Booty and the ten dollar price point lined up well with what the game offered. Plus, I haven’t played a proper R&C game in ages, so I’m anxious to get back to it.

First seen on the PlayStation Blog.

Final Thoughts on Max Payne 3

I’m not going to call this a review of Max Payne 3 even though my time with the game is finished. I played the single player, on easy, and completed it. I didn’t touch it on the harder modes, nor did I attempt New York Minute mode or arcade mode. The former was not unlocked due to my meager difficulty setting, the latter may have been unlocked, but I didn’t check. I also didn’t touch the multiplayer for even a second because seriously, why would I do that? Other people may be interested in new multiplayer experiences, but not this guy. We can take it as a given that I’m going to suck at multiplayer, regardless of the new bells and whistles implemented therein, so why waste everyone’s time?

Don’t get me wrong, I have a pretty strong opinion of the game, I’m just not comfortable calling this a review given that there’s so much of the game I didn’t touch. That being said, let’s get to it.

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CD Projekt Announces Cyberpunk

CD Projekt Red just had their big summer press conference and they officially announced their new non-Witchery IP – Cyberpunk. A little on the nose, I suppose, but it’s evidently based on an existing pen and paper property from RPG designer Mike Pondsmith. So, who had Cyberpunk in the pool?

Here are the rest of the details from CD Projekt:

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Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam DLC

It’s turning out to be trailer day here at NHS (or perhaps trailer week), as Paradox announce the latest bit of DLC (and by far the biggest) for Crusader Kings 2 – Sword of Islam. Expect to see this one come out in June, along with the 1.06 patch and be priced at $9.99. Here’s the word from Paradox:

New York, May 30, 2012 – Paradox Interactive and Paradox Development Studio today reveal that players will soon be able to play as the Muslim rulers in upcoming DLC “Sword of Islam” .

The DLC will release at the same time as the next hefty patch which adds new features to the game, such as an expansion of the map into Mali-Songhay, differentiation on strong and weak claims, new plot, expanded combat and more.

Sword of Islam enables players to rule as the Muslim lords, delivering a wealth of specific new mechanics distinctive to these rulers, creating a whole new gameplay experience. Laws, marriage, holding, traits , titles and more will work completely differently.

Of Orcs and Men E3 Trailer

Yet another E3 trailer for a game I’ll be seeing in seven short days. Of Orcs and Men puts you in the green skins of an orc and a goblin looking to end their persecution at the hands of humankind. Our beloved Cyanide Studios was involved in the concept and preproduction of this game, but seeing how they’re not handling development (Spiders is), I’m not as wary as I’d be if it were a full blown Cyanide joint.

I’ll have a full report on the game from beautiful LA next week. Until then, enjoy some stealthy hamstringing.

Hitman: Absolution Brings Nuns With Guns

The bald dude with the barcode on his head is definitely from the Hitman series, but I dunno, those latex dressed nuns packing guns and RPGs scream Saints Row: The Third. Having never played a Hitman game, I have no idea if pistol packing brides of Christ are the norm in this series. Whatever the case, I’ll be seeing this one at E3 so I’ll be sure to let you in on further nun generated shenanigans.

Among the Sleep: Toddler Terror

Heard about this last night and damn me if it isn’t quite the more intriguing premise for a video game that I’ve encountered in a long time. Among the Sleep puts you in the role of a two-year old child who manages to get out of bed late one night, out and about into a house where strange and inexplicable things are beginning to happen.

I’ve observed previously that horror games are most effective when they make use of the primitive buttons we all have regards protecting children. Well how about one that pushes those buttons alongside all the ones connected to primal, childhood terror of the dark? Horror gaming isn’t dead. Not by a long way.