Battlefield 2042 Replaces Combat Classes With Specialists, But Who Are They & What Do They Do?

The pre-E3 Battlefield 2042 festivities are already off to a strong start. The exciting cinematic footage from yesterday revealed the massive scale of each playable map, the sheer chaos of moment-to-moment action, and the awe-inspiring tactical decisions that dynamic weather effects can bring to each match. However, technical and visual changes aren’t the only new content coming to the latest installment in Dice’s beloved FPS franchise. Gone are the days of combat classes. Instead, Battlefield 2042 replaces these age-old roles with specialists; potentially bridging the gap between lore-based narrative and multiplayer-focused game modes.

The four distinct combat classes that have appeared in previous Battlefield games are as follows: recon (snipers), assault (your tried and true run-and-gunners), support (medics), and engineer (fixer-uppers and heavy ordnance experts). Each role had a limited repertoire of firearms to choose from and class-specific abilities – from repairing damaged tanks to reviving fallen teammates with a syringe or defibrillator. The new specialists are characters that can use any weapon of choice. Each comes with their own name, place of birth, specialty (active ability), and trait (passive ability). As of right now, only four specialists have been revealed, with ten slated to be available at launch. 

But Who Are They & What Do They Do?

Wikus “Casper” Van Daele

Place of Birth: South Africa / Class: Recon / Specialty: OV-P Recon Drone / Trait: Movement Sensor

Casper is an introvert; reserved and even outwardly cold towards others from time to time. Simply put, he’s the perfect soldier for recon work. His OV-P Recon Drone can spot targets moving around nearby, and a built-in EMP charge can disorient anyone foolish enough to try to ambush him. An added bonus is that he can also utilize his drone to highlight lock-on targets for allies in the vicinity. His Movement Sensor passive is similar to his active ability in that it alerts him when players are approaching. In other words, Casper has eyes in the back of his head at all times.

Webster Mackay

Place of Birth: Canada / Class: Assault / Specialty: Grappling Hook / Trait: Nimble

Mackay is ex-military but that doesn’t make him any less elite when taking to the battlefield alongside his specially trained peers. Each firefight he takes part in, however, is far more personal for him than anyone else: he’s working tirelessly to correct mysterious mistakes that he made when he served. His Grappling Hook attaches to surfaces and catapults him into advantageous positions (perhaps, it’ll serve some ludicrous use when tornados enter the fray). And his Nimble trait gives him higher ADS speeds. If you’re looking to sprint into a building and wipe out a squad with unmatched proficiency, Mackay is your man

Maria Falck

Place of Birth: Germany / Class: Support / Specialty: S21 Syrette Pistol / Trait: Combat Surgeon

Ah, yes, the support class; my favorite. If you’re like me, then you’ll probably be committing hundreds of hours to mastering Falck’s kit. As you’d expect, she’s no pushover. What you might not know is that Falck is looking for her son David. Her many battles will take her across the world in search of him. A Syrette Pistol replaces the health pack that so often got us thankless healers killed on the front lines. Conversely, she fires syringes from a safe distance to provide healing. Of course, these same syringes can be used to damage adversaries. Combat Surgeon gives her the opportunity to revive downed teammates to full health, an ability that will likely lead to the demise of any unwary Battlefield players.

Pyotr “Boris” Guskovsky

Place of Birth: Russia / Class: Engineer / Specialty: SG-36 Sentry Gun / Trait: Sentry Operator

Boris is your hard-nosed, albeit power-hungry, engineer specialist. His SG-36 Sentry System is an automated weapon that targets and engages with opponents on its own. And his Sentry Operator trait lets him spot any enemies that his turret might come across. Players will probably get a lot of value out of Boris by setting up his sentry gun at high-traffic areas or choke points. While I’d never condone camping, he might also be best suited for hunkering down and defending command points.

The other characters players can enjoy will likely be unveiled as we draw closer to…; target=”_blank”>Battlefield 2042’s October 22 release date. The game can be played on next-gen and last-gen consoles as well as on PC. 

Have any of the aforementioned specialists piqued your interest? Sound off in the comments below!


Golf Club Wasteland Invites You To Tee Off Amid The Ruins Of Post-Apocalyptic Earth

Earth has become a desolate, inhabitable rock. Nearly all of humanity has been wiped out save for the wealthy elite, who have fled to Mars to form a new colony. Earth’s barren landscape is still good for one thing, though: playing a few rounds of golf. That’s the premise of Golf Club Wasteland, an upcoming game by Demagog Studio where players will uncover the cause of Earth’s collapse while teeing off. 

Golf Club Wasteland is a narrative-driven golf game told from three sources. You’ll learn about the backstory of the lone golfer protagonist, who has returned to Earth to play one last game for reasons unknown. A mysterious narrator keeping tabs on your excursion provides further context and background. Lastly, The Radio Nostalgia From Mars, a popular broadcast, provides further backstory into the lives of the lucky few who managed to survive this mysterious apocalypse while also laying down some catchy tunes circa the 2020s. 

Click here to watch embedded media

Gameplay consists of 2D golf mechanics that are designed to be easy for anyone to pick up and grasp, while a minimal UI keeps your view clean and clear. You’ll send your golf balls across a variety of strange, post-apocalyptic obstacles, such as crumbling shopping malls or the giant, suspended hand off a massive statue. You’ll also use your balls to overcome less traditional objectives, such as activating switches to open doors. 

Golf Club Wasteland provides three modes of play. If you’re more interested in the narrative and less about nailing a hole-in-one, the casual-focused Story Mode is for you. Challenge Mode provides a more balanced test of your golf and puzzle-solving skills. Lastly, expert players can show off their golf prowess in the brutally challenging Iron Mode. 

Golf games are making a bit of a comeback, and, as proven by the upcoming Mario Golf: Super Rush, it’s always fun to see a unique take on the sport. Golf Club Wasteland offers a neat angle on golf we haven’t seen before, and I’m always interested in sports-focused games that are able to weave in a strong narrative element. The game is launching sometime this August, and every copy includes a digital soundtrack and artbook. The game will be available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC for $9.99. 

What do you think of Golf Club Wasteland? Let us know in the comments!


Battlefield 2042 Open Beta Details

Battlefield 2042 is officially revealed, with DICE unveiling a new shooter experience set not too far in the future. For those eager to call themselves what the game refers to as “Non-Patrioted,” the Battlefield 2042 open beta has been confirmed. Here is what you need to know.

There is an open beta planned for Battlefield 2042 “in the months leading up to launch.” While we don’t have a release window for when those dates will drop, we do know that the beta will not be platform-specific. That means PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players can all get in on the action early. 

Additionally, DICE has confirmed that it will have a separate tech test apart from the initial beta. This is all pre-launch to ensure that day one runs as smoothly as possible. For those that pre-order Battlefield 2042, there will be an “early access” period to the planned beta. More about these testing dates will be revealed closer to launch, so I wouldn’t expect hard dates set during the gameplay revealed planned for June 13. 

Click here to watch embedded media

The technical test, however, we do know a little more about. DICE confirmed that this would be going down sometime in July. It won’t be like previous closed testing periods; instead, it will be done in a “closed setting where we’ll be using a grey box environment.” For anyone that takes part in this testing period, there will be an NDA attached, meaning there will be restrictions on what players can and can’t talk about. 

If you haven’t gotten all caught up on the latest Battlefield announcement, you can check out our game hub here. We learned about AI bots for those that don’t want to play against live people, more on the Battle Pass, and how to weaponize a freaking tornado

What are your thoughts on what we’ve seen thus far about Battlefield 2042? Are you going to be tuning in this weekend to see the full gameplay reveal? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


The Future Of E3 Will “Probably” Be A Hybrid Of Digital And In-Person Events, Says ESA

Due to COVID-19, E3 never happened last year, and this year? It’s all digital. While the community has differing opinions about where the ESA should take this showcase next, or even whether or not to continue it, it looks like there may be a middle ground reached regarding the future of E3. According to a recent statement made by the president of ESA, the next E3 looks like it could be a hybrid showcase, blending online with in-person celebrations. 

E3 2021 kicks off this weekend, and while it is completely digital, that means it’s also free. The showcase has only become open to the public in recent years. In the past, E3 has always been a dedicated, in-person event for games media and other industry figures. At the same time, the community at large has celebrated gaming from afar by watching the showcases online. Before COVID, ESA made the change to make the event open to the public, allowing gamers to come onto the showroom floor and experience the future of gaming alongside those working in the industry. 

“This will provide us with an opportunity to present to members of the industry, media, and fans an opportunity to participate fully, and I think that provides a really unique opportunity to learn this year what we can apply to future events that will probably be a mix of physical and digital,” said Entertainment Software Association president Stanley Pierre-Louis  GamesIndustry. “But that’s to be determined. We’ve got to figure out where we all are moving forward.”

He also added that the core focus of the ESA is to remain hyper focused on this year’s event. Being digital, a lot can go wrong. Technical difficulties usually happen at the worst time. That, and there is more competition in this space than there has been in the past, especially with EA Play, Sony doing their own thing, and the Summer Game Fest securing a position in the news rotation for the Summer. 

“The shape of that is yet to be determined, and we hope to learn from this year’s event what transfers well,” he added. “I can’t speak to future E3s because we really want to focus on E3 2021 and ensure this is a great experience for exhibitors, the media, and fans alike.”

It will be interesting to see where E3 goes from here. With a rise in focus for content creators and more and more programs coming out to make online content meaningful due to the pandemic, the question remains: is E3 even needed? You decide in the comment section below! 


Bungie Responds To Destiny 2 Fan Request For Exotic Reworks

Destiny 2 today is very different than Destiny 2 at launch. It is better both in terms of balancing and story content, a positive change that began its true journey once the studio parted ways with Activision as its publisher. That being said, this evolving live-service game is constantly changing to make the meta make sense whenever new story content drops. Sometimes those changes are phenomenal, other times they miss the mark entirely. The work is never over, but the good thing is that Bungie is pretty transparent with players no matter what, and a recent request for Exotic reworks is no exception. 

One Reddit user took to the Destiny forums to talk a little bit about how Exotics often go unused due to new seasonal weapons and armor drops. In a post, u/Theraptorking54 mentioned that they wished Bungie would work on improving older Exotics alongside the new drops, making older weapons and gear interact with newer Destiny 2 mechanics in a meaningful way. They reference Champions and how there is currently only one (permanent) means of stunning an overload. Destiny 2 senior community manager DMG responded to the post, asking for feedback and opening up dialogue between the community and the studio about this particular request. 

Click here to watch embedded media

In DMG04’s response, he said, “Would love to hear more. Which Exotics would you want to see prioritized in the future? How do they currently feel underwhelming? Team takes passes from time to time when balancing with development of new stuff. Can’t hit every Exotic at a single time, but we can always pass up the feedback on which ones are mentioned more frequently.” 

A big one that comes up in the community is Malfeasance, an Exotic hand cannon that was first introduced in the Forsaken expansion. It’s an impressive weapon, but doesn’t mesh well with newer content, especially when looking at the catalyst perk. Some want all-out rebalancing, where others just want a simple kill tracker added. Other Exotics in question that come up the most is DARCI, Lucky Pants, Peacekeepers, Jade Rabbit, Black Talon, Mas of the Quiet One, and Icefall Mantle. 

It’s great to see the dialogue continue. Bungie is in an odd position because it can’t really tell players exactly what’s on the way and the community is often divided on what it wants. Take Stasis in PvP, for example. Some absolutely hated it, even to the point of leaving the community until a fix was in place. Others, however, thought the additional challenge of its freezing properties were harmless and saw it as just another opponent obstacle to watch out for. There are many players in both camps, so finding a resolution between the two is tricky. The most recent Stasis changes within PvP have been met with a lot of positive feedback, though the latter half that likes the challenge have expressed disappointment in the extreme nature of the nerfs. 

Destiny 2 continues to grow and evolve. Currently, it has one of the highest active player counts in the MMO space, the top two spot at the time this article was written. It will be interesting to see where the community and the story goes from here, especially with a new teaser seemingly confirming we are going to Old Chicago


Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade Is Out Now For PlayStation 5

Click here to watch embedded media

This is a huge week for PlayStation 5. Starting today, you can return to Midgar to be reunited with Yuffie Kisaragi in Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade, an enhanced version that delivers a new episode and other meaningful additions. A day later, the new release spotlight then moves to Insomniac Games’ Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, which is a fantastic return for the series, and an absolute must-play if you want to see what PlayStation 5 is capable of.

For those of you who are making a return visit to Midgar, it should catch your eye in a different way, with improved texturing, lighting, and more detail in the backdrops. You can experience these sights in Graphics Mode, which delivers a 4K resolution and 30 frames per second, or Performance Mode, which gives you smoother play at 60 frames per second in 1080p. No matter what mode you play in, a new photo mode allows you to focus in on the details.

Even if you already played the game, you’ll have plenty of new things to see in the oddly named EPISODE INTERmission. This story unfolds through the eyes of Yuffie, one of the original party members from Final Fantasy VII on PlayStation 1. She’s trying to reach Midgar, a mission that is aided by partner Sonon Kusakabe.

Their journey introduces a new summon beast, and they’ll square off against a variety of different foes, some of which haven’t been seen before. The gameplay is enhanced on the DualSense controller, and you can expect much faster load times as you move between areas.

If you already purchased Final Fantasy VII Remake on PlayStation 4, you can download the PlayStation 5 upgrade for free, which comes with may of the visual enhancements mentioned above. You can then download EPISODE INTERmission on its own.

Let us know what you think of Integrade in the chat below. Will this be your first time stepping into or revisiting Midgar? If you already played Remake, do you want to play it again, or just jump into the new content?


Xbox Game Pass Changes Ahead, Full Xbox Intergration Into TVs, And The Future Of Gaming

Microsoft leadership, including Phil Spencer, made a strong pivot towards the last half of the Xbox One generation, bringing the Xbox name back into the realm of gaming and Team Green’s original vision. Real change takes time, but Spencer and the crew have been upfront and detailed every step of the way. With E3 2021 on the horizon, Xbox leadership is back to give a preview of the year ahead. That includes a clear declaration of its commitment to the gaming community, how Xbox Game Pass will continue to evolve, and even things like full-scale TV integration. Let’s dive in.

Xbox and Bethesda are joining forces for the two company’s E3 presence this year on Sunday and promises to unveil its “best and biggest games line up.” With so many studio acquisitions already having happened, and more on the way, Spencer wanted to take a moment to talk about how the growing umbrella of Xbox is evolving and what that means for gamers – even beyond the Xbox console itself. 

“We believe that games, that interactive entertainment, aren’t really about hardware and software. It’s not about pixels. It’s about people. Games bring people together,” said Spencer. “Games build bridges and forge bonds, generating mutual empathy among people all over the world. Joy and community – that’s why we’re here.”

“Gaming is fundamentally aligned with our mission as a company,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “When you talk about Xbox’s mission to bring the joy and community of gaming to everyone on the planet, which I absolutely love, that is precisely aligned with Microsoft’s mission, which is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.”

Click here to watch embedded media

“As a company, Microsoft is all-in on gaming. Gaming is the most dynamic category in the entertainment industry. Three billion consumers look to gaming for entertainment, community, creation, as well as a real sense of achievement, and our ambition is to empower each of them, wherever they play.”

“We believe that Microsoft can play a leading role in democratizing gaming and defining the future of interactive entertainment. There are really three key areas where we believe we have an incredible competitive advantage: First, our leadership in cloud computing. Second, the resources we have to build our subscription service, Xbox Game Pass. And third, our overall focus on empowering creators.”

As we’ve mentioned previously in a detailed breakdown of the two very different generational strategies between Sony and Microsoft this time around, Xbox is focusing less on hardware specifically and more on ecosystem expansion. With Xbox Game Pass bringing even more gamers into the community and even encouraging them to try out titles they may not have picked up on their own (at no additional cost, mind), the continued growth and effectiveness of this subscription service is imperative. Because of that, Microsoft wants to expand beyond consoles and PC. Now, Xbox is coming to TV manufacturers beyond additional hardware. 

Spencer and the team announced that they are working with global TV manufacturers to directly embed the Xbox experience directly into smart TVs (TVs that can connect to the internet and have app integration). The company wants to do this to eliminate a dependency on hardware with the exception of a controller. With the platform expansion goals in mind, Microsoft is also looking into exploring new subscription offers for Xbox Game Pass so that it is more accessible on a financial and global scale so that “more players around the world can experience the most immersive and fun games across devices, geographies, and financial realities.” 

Click here to watch embedded media

Also mentioned is Xbox All Access, something Microsoft is working with telecommunication providers on so that gamers can buy a console and Game Pass for a low monthly price, versus paying upfront at full retail value (much like companies do for expensive cellphones). 

With that expansion in mind, Microsoft has also confirmed that Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, a service that includes Xbox Live, will be launching in Mexico, Brazil, Japan, and Australia later this year. This is especially good news when looking at the cost hikes in places like Brazil. When I worked in Recife, Brazil a few years ago, I was shocked to see that a console there could retail for $1000+ dollars, sometimes close to $2000 due to inflation. Seeing this sort of expansion in mind, including TV integration, will make it easier for all to dive right into the realm of gaming without breaking the bank. 

Xbox also reiterated that its 23 studios, including Bethesda and id Software, are hard at work on creating epic new adventures. Because of that excitement, the goal for Team Green is to release one new, first-party game into the Xbox Game Pass library every quarter. This will include numerous genres, including FPS, RPGs, and more. 

In the second video above, you can see both members of the Xbox leadership talking more about their commitment to the gaming community and what the road looks like ahead. 


Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart: The First Three Hours – New Gameplay Today Live

Click here to watch embedded media


I have good news for you, PlayStation fans. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is almost here and it’s fantastic. The bad news is that it’s not quite out yet for everyone, which may make things worse. The remedy for all this unpleasant waiting and gnawing anticipation? Watching the first few hours of Insomniac’s gorgeous new platforming adventure with your friends at Game Informer, of course!

That’s right, we’re going to be kicking off your morning with a healthy dose of Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart live exclusively on Twitch! The show is going on right now so please join Alex Stadnik in the chat to ask questions about the PlayStation 5 exclusive! We’ll be starting with a fresh save to keep you from any late-game spoilers so feel free to pop in and out at your leisure.

For those needing a reminder, Rift Apart takes place after the events of Into The Nexus and finds our titular heroes second-guessing their abilities in the midst of a parade honoring their past achievements. As a way to cheer his friend up, Clank offers Ratchet the Dimensionator, a tool capable of sending the Lombax across dimensions to find his long-lost family. The only problem? Dr. Nefarious has other plans for Clank’s contraption and ruptures the very fabric of reality in the process. When the two protagonists are separated, newcomer Rivet swoops in to save Clank and work with her fellow Lombax to try and prevent the dimensions from collapsing!

Excited for more from Ratchet & Clank ahead of its June 11 release date? Be sure to check out our chat with Insomniac about its latest title, a New Gameplay Today mostly focused on Rivet, and a look at some of the wild cameos that make an appearance later in the game.

Also, be sure to follow and subscribe to our Twitch channel as it’s truly the place to be for looks at new games, watch along streams featuring the biggest events in the industry, and so much more! Thanks, as always, for watching!


Be Prepared For The Changes In Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis

Sega finally brought Phantasy Star Online 2 westward in 2020 thanks to a partnership with Microsoft. That was the first step in a transformational journey for the action MMO. Today, Sega launched Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis, a massive addition to PSO2. It’s not just a traditional expansion to the 2012 game, it’s an entirely new experience. Here’s a quick primer on what to expect upon logging in. 

New Genesis may be started from the same launcher as its predecessor, but everything from the world, quests, combat, and enemies are brand new. Sega even gave the game a graphical overhaul, and in the process making PSO2 look like it belongs in 2021. Taking place 1,000 years after the original PSO2, New Genesis lets players’ customized ARKS loose in an open world on the planet Halpha. With this new approach to environmental design comes some changes to movement. ARKS run faster and jump higher than ever before. They can glide through the air to travel long distances, and characters tend to float while slashing away during combat. 

Humans, Newmans, Casts, and Deumans are the four playable races currently in the game. They can take up the mantle of six classic Phantasy Star Online classes: Hunter, Fighter, Ranger, Gunner, Force, or Techter. Each class specializes in certain styles of weaponry, filling a specific role on the battlefield. All of these classes were in the base game, though some are missing. Not everything is one-to-one going into New Genesis. Expect some changes when diving into it. 

Because New Genesis is contained within the same client as PSO2, players can bring their character over to this new experience. A character’s appearance is the same in both games, including taking a creation from the newly enhanced character editor back to OG PSO2. Unfortunately, there are a few caveats in regards to having a character live in two distinct time periods. A lot of items and gear will not carry over to NGS because they might not even exist in the new game. Character level, experience, class skills, and photon arts also do not make the conversion. 

Weapons are a bit more complicated. The visual style of weaponry will remain consistent between versions, but will probably have differing stats and might only be equipped at higher levels. Some weapon classes haven’t made their way to the future, so anything that isn’t in yet will have to wait it out in PSO2 for now.

Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis is available as of today on PC and current Xbox consoles. Have you had a chance to play some yet? Let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.


Genshin Impact’s 1.6 Update Is Out Now, Here’s What To Expect

Beach vacations are a long-standing tradition in anime, and Genshin Impact’s Version 1.6 update is focusing on sandy beaches, blue skies, and pristine waters. Dubbed The Midsummer Island Adventure, developer MiHoYo has added a spread of event quests, items, costumes, and even a new character. There is plenty here for Genshin players to sink their teeth into like a juicy, salted watermelon. Let’s take a look at some of the new content that’s available today and the coming weeks:

The bulk of playable content revolves around an archipelago of islands to explore with events that are only available for a limited time. This new story follows Klee, a member of the Knights of Favonious, who receives a message from someone called “Dodo-King,” who aims to capture her prized companion, a keepsake from her mother she calls Dodoco. 

Eligibility for the new area requires the player be Adventure Rank 21 or above, and have completed Klee’s Story Quest “Trifolium Chapter: Act I – True Treasure,” as well as the Archon Quest “Prologue: Act III – Song of the Dragon and Freedom.”  Along this new four-part adventure, The Traveler will sail on a cannon-armed boat known as a Waverider and travel between a series of islands where danger and fun lurk. 

While tackling combat and races through a series of islands at sea and land, these new events will bring about new challenges such as an imposing enemy known as Maguu Kenki. This opponent wields multiple swords and can summon phantom enemies to join the fight. MiHoYo warns that it prefers close combat, so be prepared for an intimate melee.

Since this is a trip to the beach, this new update brings along a few summer-themed threads for existing characters. Jean can sport her new “Sea Breeze Dandelion” outfit when purchased for the discounted price of 1,350 Genesis Crystals (regular price is 1,680). This getup is permanently available in the shop. Barbara’s “Summertime Sparkle” seasonal garb, on the other hand, can be purchased using the Island Adventure collectible Echoing Conches. Once the 1.6 update event ends, it will be obtainable in the shop for 1,680 Genesis Crystals.

Along with the seafaring and dress-up, players can get their hands on the first playable character from the Inazuma nation. The silver-haired swordsman, Kaedahara Kazuha, is dressed in an intricate autumnal outfit with flowing sleeves and a dark red pants ballooning at the knees. Adorned with red and orange leaves, it’s a bit out of sync with the summer theme running through this update. Wielding the Ameno element, Kazuha is described by MiHoYo as having a “versatile combat style, but also provides buffs to his teammates under certain circumstances.” He’s able to push and pull enemies using the powers of the wind, and his Elemental Burst called “Kazuha Slash” can do initial damage to multiple enemies and leaves a storm behind that causes even more harm over time. He won’t be available right away, but will be available in a future Event Wish during the 1.6 update timeframe.

Also in the Midsummer Island Event are chances to get the exclusive four-star catalyst Dodoco Tales, Northlander Biller Trove, and Furnishing Blueprints. All of these items and more can be obtained by trading Shiny Flotsam and Mini “Harpasta” to a vendor. On top of that, Event Wish “Epitome Invocation” is happening until June 29. This includes increased drop rates on various weapons and catalysts. A small sample of the included drops are five-star claymore Skyward Pride, four-star event-exclusive bow Mitternachts Waltz, and four-star polearm Favonius Lance. 

That’s a ton of stuff, and there’s even more to look forward to down the line including the “Legend of the Vagabond Sword” event running from June 25 to July 8. You can check out the patch notes for Update 1.6 with even more details here. Remember, a lot of the content from this update is only available for a limited time, so get to adventuring as soon as you can. Good luck on all of your wishes, and enjoy Genshin’s version of a summer vacation.


Battlefield 2042 Battle Pass Explained, Free Vs. Premium

Battle Passes are becoming more and more of the norm in the realm of online games, and that term can mean a plethora of different things. Sometimes, this means locked content like Call of Duty and Destiny 2, other times; it can just mean an additional option for those that really like to just have a closet full of cosmetics for their in-game toons. With this option being confirmed for Battlefield 2042, there is already some misinformation floating around, so we wanted to take a second to clarify between the two after talking to DICE. 

Battlefield 2042 Battle Pass Free vs. Premium

Click here to watch embedded media

There are the two above options available for players to choose from. First things first, let’s assuage those worries a bit: there is no content locked from the free Battle Pass option. What we mean by that is that there is no meaningful content that is tucked away behind a paywall. That means all players get the same maps, the same Specialists, the same weapons, the same everything. So then, what’s the point, you may be asking? Glad you’re still with us, dear reader.

The Premium Battle Pass offers cosmetic options for players to unlock as they progress through the four seasons. Much like games like Call of Duty, Fortnite, and many others, there are a variety of “lewks” players can unlock. From Specialist outfits to weapon reskins, this option is solely there for those that spend some serious time in-game and like to feel pretty. Can’t fight crime if you ain’t cute, amirite? 

Something that other shooters have come under fire for in recent years is offering a Battle Pass that locks behind actual playable content. This could be a specific mode, a new map, playable characters – the works. For me, this is where there is an issue. Players should be able to play the same game if they’ve purchased something with a full price tag attached. Since the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S version of Battlefield 2042 is $70 and the “last-gen” is set at $60, all players that pay that full price should get the same playable content. If you want to do the pay-as-you-play model, you should lower that price point. 

Luckily, DICE agrees, so that’s what’s happening. I’ll admit, I’m a sucker for a good skin, especially the funnier ones that make their way into titles like Rainbow Six Siege, so if the get is good enough? I might splurge to feel cute. While many think that a paid Pass is wrong no matter what and that reasoning is sound in its own right, I feel that at the end of the day? It’s a business, and money is a driving factor behind keeping those doors open and possibilities limitless. If there is an optional means to make more money, I don’t have to agree with it to understand it necessarily; I simply won’t buy into it. But when you start locking playable content behind an additional paywall, that’s when things get messy.

So that’s the difference between the Free Battle Pass and the Premium Battle Pass. Nothing of value is lost if you go the Free route. We’ll be learning more about the latest iteration of Battlefield on June 2013. Until then, catch up on what you may have missed with our game hub here. You can also find out more about the multiplayer-only experience with our AI breakdown here


New Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance Gameplay Revealed, Plus DLC News

Baldur’s Gate is coming back to this gen with a new Dungeons & Dragons title to enjoy. We’ve had a few up close and personal looks at the upcoming RPG, but the team over at Tuque Games and Wizards of the Coast have more to share. This time, we’ve got new Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance gameplay to enjoy, as well as an inside look at DLC plans that are on the way. 

Sony shared our latest look at Dungeons & Dragons Dark Alliance in the video below, showing off a few more cinematic shots right before diving into the meat of what matters: gameplay. It’s about what one would expect out of a Dark Alliance game with the combat mechanics and overall setup, which makes it exciting to see for those really looking forward to revisiting this universe. Especially when looking at the co-op.

Click here to watch embedded media

But it’s not just the game at launch that we have to look forward to. The team also shared a first look at Dark Alliance’s roadmap to reveal some expansion plans in the works. The first two DLC revealed will be completely free, both slated for this year with a Summer and Fall window. The first DLC will introduce new levels, which have yet to be detailed, while the second set of DLC also offers new levels and more difficulty options. 

The first expansion, however, is called Echoes of the Blood War, and that’s slated for a Fall 2021 launch, as well. This expansion will offer a new narrative to enjoy, a fresh new playable character, even more levels, and a few surprises not yet revealed. That one isn’t listed as free, it looks like an all-out expansion rather than just a small DLC update, but its announcement does have me interested in learning more. 

We’ll be able to see what Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance has in store for ourselves when it launches on June 22 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players. 

What do you think about the latest gameplay showing of Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance? Familiar and exciting, or are you just not feeling it? Sound off with your thoughts in the comments below! 


Overwatch Cross-Play Beta Announced

Cross platform play has been a long-requested feature for Overwatch, and Blizzard is finally answering those prayers five years after launch. Cross-play is coming to the hit multiplayer game, and to make sure it works as intended, Blizzard is holding a cross-play beta before it rolls out in full.

The cross-play beta will be available on all versions of Overwatch. That’s PlayStation and Xbox consoles as well as Switch and PC for those keeping count. The beta is powered by the latest update and will allow players from all over the globe to team up with friends and teammates on different platforms to defend payloads, spray tags, and all manner of Overwatch goodness. However, cross-progression will not be available at launch.  

Click here to watch embedded media

Furthermore, some game modes will have special conditions for cross-play matchmaking. Parties of console players will match with other console players by default. PC players will match with opponents on PC as well as with groups consisting of PC and console players. 

Confused? Here’s a list of examples from the video:

  • If you’re a console player with cross-play enabled and solo join a quickplay match, you’ll be matched with other players on any console but not with PC players. 
  • If you’re a console player and form a party with friends on both consoles and PC, you’ll be placed in the PC matchmaking pool and will face PC players and parties of PC/console players. 
  • If you disable cross-play on console, you’ll only be matched with players on your specific platform.
  • PC players cannot disable cross-play. 

Competitive play seems to be the exception. You won’t be able to play as a party of both PC and console players. Instead, each player base will have their own, dedicated matchmaking pools. 

The update also merges friends lists from different territories into a unified listing. That means you won’t have to switch regions to play with a buddy on the opposite side of the globe. To indulge in the cross-play beta, Blizzard says you’ll need to first make a account (assuming you haven’t already), then link said account to your console. That should do the trick, and if you get all of this set up and log into Overwatch by December 31, you’ll be rewarded with a Golden Loot Box. 

Blizzard says the beta will begin “soon” but hasn’t provided an exact date yet. It’s a surprising and somewhat strange move to release such a huge update with Overwatch 2 looming on the horizon. Does this mean we can expect to see cross-play in Overwatch 2 on launch day? One would hope so, but we’ll just have to wait and see. Speaking of Overwatch 2, Blizzard also shares that its revealing two new skins for that game on June 10 during Summer Games Fest

What do you think about cross-play finally coming to Overwatch? If you’re a lapsed player, is it enough to get you interested in playing again?  Let us know in the comments!


Battlefield 2042 Lets You Weaponize Tornados And Other Dynamic Weather Effects

Dice’s Battlefield franchise is beloved for combining large-scale warfare with strikingly immersive realism – from suppressive fire blur effects to total map destructibility. Battlefield 2042 is slated to stand triumphantly on the shoulders of its successors by reconstructing the series’ most important gameplay pillars with the added  help of next-gen technology. Sure, futuristic firearms and legions of heavily-armored vehicles are a sight to behold, but what about snaking tornados stripping glass windows from skyscrapers? Or impossibly massive sandstorms enveloping the land in thick layers of In Battlefield 2042, you can use dynamic weather to your advantage to take down enemies or make speedy arena rotations. 

Like previous installments, you’ll be traveling all around the world – storming ravaged beaches, infiltrating towering metropolises, defending rocket launch sites, and experiencing so much more. While you’re crawling through dirt-filled trenches or pinned down in some multi-floor commercial building, the play state of your match might change in the blink of an eye when shifts in weather start to suddenly arise. Dangerous twisters are bound to materialize when you least expect it, tossing debris and even manned vehicles haphazardly. One Dice developer recalled a moment where a Humvee was fatally flung at a highly-skilled sniper that had been pinning him and his squad down. 

While confirmed kills like the aforementioned one just happen to be an interesting (and extremely lucky!) byproduct of Battlefield 2042’s dynamic weather, you can also use the tornado to close the distance between you and an enemy or some arbitrary mission objective. For instance, wingsuit gliding allows you to fling yourself into the air and with the combined power of a devastating vortex, you might be able to get to high vantage points or arrive at a location before enemy reinforcements do. I imagine that you’ll also be able to stay seated in your favorite vehicles, despite being caught in the tornado’s grip – just be sure to evacuate or eject before you’re haplessly tossed at some bone-crushing structure. 

Sandstorm footage was more brief, but appeared to tint the entire battlefield in foreboding, sanguine tones. It’s also safe to assume that visual clarity will be affected in substantial ways. Knowing the atmospheric presence of environmental effects in older Battlefield games, there will likely be more hazardous (and/or beneficial) climate changes coming to the full game when it finally launches. 

How do you plan on utilizing tornados? Perhaps you’ll just throw yourself into its path during your first few encounters just to see what happens. Or, maybe you’ll come up with wacky plays that were never intended in the first place!


Battlefield 2042 Trailer Shows Off An Impressive Evolution Of The FPS Franchise

At long last! Following numerous rumors and Bad Company 3 disappointments, the next step in the Battlefield franchise has been revealed. Introducing Battlefield 2042, an FPS experience set in the near future that challenges players to become something called a Non-Patriot after a refugee crisis overtakes what we know to be everyday life. 

Non-Patriots, or Non-Pats for short, aren’t just your standard soldier. They are the engineers of the world, the humble farmer, the impassioned teacher. They can be anyone, they can be you. They don’t fight for a flag or for a company, they fight for the future, a future you can be a part of with this new experience that offers new game modes, much larger maps, and literal tornadoes that you can run from or use to your advantage. 

The reveal trailer starts off with a bang – literally – as we see an armed team get blown off of a cliff edge, only for some to impressively stick the landing expertly. From weaponry to the different vehicle types, our first look is nothing short of exciting, and an incredible pivot from the previous release seen in Battlefield 5

Click here to watch embedded media

DICE is pushing this shooter to the limit by upping the player count to 128 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and PC. PS4 and Xbox One players are downsized to 64 to preserve the experience, though the studio promises that the lower player count will not impact the game’s overall style and feel. 

We also got our first look at some of the Specialists, playable characters that have very real backstories and fewer limits than previous Battlefield games. In the past, players were limited to certain loadouts depending on the character chosen. This time around, that limit is removed. While the Special ability remains locked to preserve the uniqueness felt in each Specialist, the guns players can use are open no matter who you choose. This works even better with the combat wheel shown off, an option that allows Non-Pats to tailor their gear to the battle mid-match. Love to go sniper but suddenly found yourself in close-quarters combat? Pull up the wheel and switch out your weapon. Customize your scope. Trade out your gear, the battle is yours – hone it. 

To learn more about the multiplayer experience, including how it doesn’t leave single-player lovers in the dust with a multiplayer-only mode model, you can check out our impressions right here

As for the game itself, Battlefield 2042 arrives on October 22 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players. 

Thoughts on the Battlefield 2042 reveal? Are you excited to learn more later this week during E3? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


How Battlefield 2042 Tailors An All-Multiplayer Game For Single-Player Fans

Battlefield 2042 takes players into the near future in a world ravaged by the most profound refugee crisis known to man. In this world space, players will become  Non-Patriated, also called Non-Pats for short. Non-Pats are farmers, engineers, soldiers – they are the survivors, they are the fighters that don’t fight for a flag. They fight for the future of the known world. While combat-ready specialists are a part of that, this is less of a military regime and more of a fight for what those think is right. An interesting spin, but still with the high-tech military gear.

2042 does things a little bit differently for this gen, eschewing the usual single-player vs. multiplayer component, and instead offers players a hybrid experience. When I first learned that there was no single-player, I was bummed, but the more I learned about 2042, the more I understood what the vision was going into this new game. On the online side of the equation, DICE is pushing this shooter to the limit by upping the player count to 128 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and PC. PS4 and Xbox One players are downsized to 64 to preserve the experience, though the studio promises that the lower player count will not impact the game’s overall style and feel. 

Click here to watch embedded media

For those worried about Battlefield 2042 only being a multiplayer experience, there is some good news. DICE assured Game Informer that the decision to do things a little differently wasn’t meant to alienate fans and that the maps and new modes are something special and meant to be enjoyed by all. For those that want to play the new Battlefield but maybe don’t have friends with similar interests, every map and mode will offer the option to play up against AI instead. Same fun, less pressure, and less trash talk. Huzzah! 

With more of a focus on multiplayer, there are three core experiences at the heart of Battlefield 2042. There’s All-Out Warfare, the next generation of fan favorites Conquest and Breakthrough. Paired with the largest maps in the history of the Battlefield franchise, All-Out Warfare is designed to be freeing, intense, and pure chaos. That chaos is ramped up to 11 by dynamic weather changes, evolving world events, and … oh yeah, freaking tornadoes. 

Tornados, dust storms, and more ravage the maps while players battle it out. DICE tells us that players can choose to either stay out of a tornado’s path or harness its power to gain the advantage. No matter which way you spin it, taking out a sniper by using a giant natural disaster? Sounds pretty epic, if you ask me.

The second multiplayer experience is Hazard Zone. This aspect is all about high-stakes and communicating with your squad. This is a more modernized take on the Battlefield experience and stands on its own, completely different than that of All-Out Warfare. 

The final aspect of the multiplayer experience is still a secret, something DICE will reveal more about this July. That being said, the studio did give us a cheeky smile when saying that longtime lovers of this particular shooter series will feel “right at home.” 

We’ll have a more in-depth breakdown of Battlefield 2042 later this week, so stay tuned! 

Battlefield 2042 arrives on October 22 on all platforms. 


Naughty Dog Looks To Be Working On A Standalone Multiplayer Game

A recent job posting seemingly reveals that Naughty Dog is working on a standalone multiplayer game, a first for the Last of Us studio. The first Last of Us game had a pretty nifty multiplayer component, but it looks like Naughty Dog is working on something wholly unique with a standalone title. 

As spotted by the folks over at VGC, several new job listings share a little insight into what the studio is working on, namely posts for a Gameplay Scriptwriter and Level Designer. The “newest adventure” states that it the “studio’s first standalone multiplayer game.” Naughty Dog has offered co-op adventures in the past, as mentioned with the first Last of Us game previously, but this looks to be something completely different. 

It looks like the gaming company isn’t looking to abandon its narrative roots with this move either. Both listings show a desire to integrate powerful storytelling, the kind Naughty Dog is known for, into its in-progress multiplayer experience. This is abundantly clear with one listing in particular that reads, “We’re seeking to bring the same level of ambition and quality of our signature, story-driven games to this unique multiplayer project. This is a rare opportunity to make an impact in your discipline and craft an experience that will be enjoyed and shared by millions of players around the world.”

So the question remains: will this be a new IP standalone MP game or something that ties into The Last of Us. As we mentioned in our E3 predictions video, I personally think this could tie into The Last of Us Part 2. We know that Factions for the sequel was pushed back, and it’s possible that this delay inspired the team to push this as a separate entity. 

We don’t know anything at this time, but with E3 right around the corner and Sony hosting its own showcase this Summer, we may be getting a first look at what’s next sometime soon. In the meantime, you can learn more about The Last of Us Part 2 with our game hub here

What are your thoughts on this “standalone” multiplayer experience? Do you think this is Factions or something new entirely? Sound off with your hot takes in the comment section below! 

[Source: Naughty Dog via VGC]


E3 2021 Predictions And Wishes

E3 has always been video games’ biggest event, and despite the expo being an entirely digital showcase due to the pandemic, we’re as excited for it as ever. Not only is the beloved trade show in the spotlight over the coming weeks, but so is the independent Summer Game Fest hosted by The Game Awards creator, Geoff Keighley. Because the pandemic has thrown the industry into an unprecedented year for game development, we don’t know quite what to expect from the announcements.

Will there be more games than previous years? Has the pandemic caused even more delayed games than we already know? We’re in for a couple of wild weeks of game announcements and news, starting on June 8th with Summer Game Fest.

Click here to watch embedded media

We gathered a handful of Game Informer editors to discuss some of the games and hardware announcements we could possibly see. Here’s what the staff thinks will be unveiled:

Ken Levine And Ghost Story Games Reveal Their Game

Years have gone by since we’ve heard anything from legendary game developer Ken Levine and his team at Ghost Story Games. Back in 2017, they were looking to hire artists to work on an immersive sim that may or may not be a first-person experience in a sci-fi setting. There are a lot of questions surrounding the project and time has only left room for more. We haven’t heard much from the 2K-owned studio composed of former Bioshock developers from Irrational Games. Will this be the year we finally find out what Ken’s idea of “narrative Legos” are, or do we have to wait in the dark a bit longer?

We’ll Get A Better Look At Fable

No longer a fabled project, we’ve known for a while about the existence of Playground Games’ take on the Fable franchise since the Xbox Games Showcase in July 2020. We’re hoping development has been good to Fable and it will be ready to be shown at the Xbox event on June 13 at 10 a.m. PT. We don’t know how much DNA is shared with the original trilogy, but given the one trailer we have seen so far, it looks to keep its tongue firmly in its cheek. We did get one tidbit recently regarding the use of the Forza engine to power this anticipated sequel. We can’t wait to have a good look at what we assume is Albion and the surrounding fantasy world brimming with enchantment.

The New Nintendo Switch Is Announced

This one is slotted firmly in the category of “worst kept secrets in games that we hope are true.” Reports have been running wild for a while now about a new Switch model releasing later this year. This new revision is rumored to replace the original docking Switch model and give the hybrid some sweet new specs. The device itself is supposed to have a new, larger 7” OLED display sporting 720p resolution, coupled with 4K output when docked to a television. Details have slipped over the course of months, but Nintendo has stayed quiet. We think E3’s Nintendo Direct is the perfect time to unveil this console update. Switch Pro, Super Switch, whatever they want to call it is fine with us, especially if they pair the announcement with a proven console seller along the lines of…

The Sequel To Breath Of The Wild Sees The Light Of Day

What better game to usher in fresh, upgraded Switch hardware than the sequel to the game that launched with the Switch back in 2017? The unnamed sequel to Breath of the Wild was announced two long years ago at E3 2019, and since then we’ve waited for new information. Nintendo has been incredibly tight lipped outside of saying we would know more this year. What we do know about the sequel involves Link and Zelda exploring a crystal-lit cavern where a curse-riddled sage is sealed away. Do we get to explore more of Hyrule’s subterranean realm? Will Zelda finally be playable in a mainline game? Is this sequel a co-op experience? We are in the midst of celebrating The Legend of Zelda’s 35th anniversary, and that would be one heck of a way to honor the princess we’ve known and loved for so long. We hope to see more on Tuesday, June 15 at 9 a.m. PT.

Just A Taste Of Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2

Square Enix is fresh off of releasing Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade on PlayStation 5 this week, and we’d love to see what the future holds for Cloud and his materia-equipping crew. We don’t expect to see a release date, but a tease from Testuya Nomura for the much anticipated sequel would be a big E3 hype moment. Please show us a bit of the world outside of Midgar and that big ol’ snake! Square Enix is holding its E3 2021 Showcase on Sunday, June 13 at 12:15 p.m. PT.

A New PlayStation 5 Color Is Shown

Sony doesn’t have its own event scheduled for E3, but PlayStation is listed as a participant in Geoff Keighley’s Summer Game Fest. What could Sony be bringing to the party? Admittedly it’s not a massive prediction, but something people have wanted since the PS5 was unveiled: an all-black PlayStation 5. Sony recently announced a couple of new colors for the DualSense controller, and the Midnight Black would look mighty handsome next to a matching console. If, you know, they’ll be in stock. 

If We Ask Very Nicely, May We Have Mother 3?

Mother 3 was released 15 years ago in Japan, and never saw the light of day overseas. It’s time. This is the year. Nintendo announcing Mother 3 in any form on Switch would be a historic moment for this year’s E3. The odds aren’t in our favor for this one given the track record of it not happening yet, but we’ll keep believing.

Project Triangle Strategy Is Revealed As A New Final Fantasy Tactics

This is a bit of an odd prediction. We know Project Triangle Strategy is a new game from Square Enix, and the newest in their line of HD-2D games that started with Octopath Traveller. The art style is an awesome way of translating SNES and PlayStation visuals to work in a 3D world. From this visual design, Project Triangle Strategy looks like it could be a sequel to Final Fantasy Tactics. And it should be. Our prediction for this is for Square Enix to ditch the complicated code name and bestow upon it the Final Fantasy Tactics name. PTS’s political nature and familiar grid-based gameplay would fit well as a Tactics game, and probably bring more eyes onto the game by name recognition alone.

Intelligent Systems Brings Back Advance Wars

Intelligent Systems has a hot hand right now, coming off of the releases of Fire Emblem: Three Houses and Paper Mario: The Origami King. While this team has been pumping out Fire Emblem games consistently, it might be time to visit another tactical franchise that’s been dormant since the Nintendo DS days. There haven’t been any rumors pointing to Intelligent Systems working on anything in particular, but a return to the Advance Wars universe and implementing what they have learned with Fire Emblem in recent years would be an interesting turn for the developer to take. The personalities of the different COs were a big part of Advance Wars, and building that out and adding more complex interpersonal character dynamics and relationships would breathe new life into a beloved franchise. If this were to happen, it would be at Nintendo’s Direct on Tuesday.

Capcom Brings VR To Resident Evil Village

This prediction is a little bit of a softball, but something we hope Capcom has been planning to implement. Since the day Resident Evil Village was announced, we’ve wondered whether it would have Resident Evil VII’s game-changing VR implementation. Many swore it was the way to experience RE7. With Village being a direct sequel and currently without the popular VR mode, we’re guessing the situation is more of a when than an if. Does that mean Capcom is waiting for new VR hardware like the PSVR successor Sony announced earlier in the year? It would make sense considering the previous PlayStation partnerships. Capcom announced it will have news of some kind for Resident Evil Village during its E3 2021 Showcase on Monday, June 14 at 2:30 p.m. PT. 

As a companion to this list, some of the Game Informer staff recorded a special”>… edition of The Game Informer Show to go over the personal predictions for this year’s E3 and Summer Game Fest. A lot of the list above and much more is discussed by Alex Stadnik, Liana Ruppert, Marcus Stewart, and new associate editor John Carson. 

Don’t forget that Game Informer is now streaming exclusively to Twitch! You can watch us stream live reactions to various E3 and Summer Game Fest shows over the course of the next couple weeks. Follow”>”>Follow us on Twitch and check out our E3″>″>E3 hub to make sure you don’t miss a moment! 


Simpsons Arcade Machine Coming From Arcade1Up

Arcade1Up has enabled game room enthusiasts to build mini arcades in their homes with a line of classic machines devoted to some of the most beloved quarter-munching games of all time. The company already offers cabinets ranging from Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter to NBA Jam and Ms. Pac Man, but today Arcade1Up announced another beloved Konami brawler will be joining its existing lineup as The Simpsons arcade beat-’em-up is joining the catalog.

Largely known by fans as The Simpsons Arcade, the brawler originally released in arcades three decades ago in 1991. The game lets you choose to play as Homer, Marge, Bart, or Lisa as you fight your way through Springfield in order to save Maggie. Much like Konami’s other popular arcade beat-’em-ups, the original Simpsons arcade cabinet allows for four-player simultaneous co-op play.

Typical Arcade1Up cabinets offer two-player action, but the company has made exceptions for products like its Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Golden Axe machines. Thankfully, The Simpsons Arcade1Up machine also features four joysticks, giving you the ability to experience the original four-player madness. Not only that, but if you don’t have three friends wanting to jump into the game at your house, this cabinet also utilizes Arcade1Up’s Wi-Fi system so you can join up with other players who own this machine across the globe. The cabinet also includes a trackball to play the other game included in the package: The Simpsons Bowling.

The Simpsons Arcade1Up cabinet features a lit marquee, a matching riser to bring the machine closer to the height of a standard arcade cabinet (even with the riser it will still be shorter than a typical arcade machine in case you’ve never bought or seen an Arcade1Up product before), an exclusive stool, an 18″ x 24″ tin sigh, and a clear deck protector. The machine itself sands 57.8″ tall and weighs just over 100 pounds.

This Arcade1Up machine costs $599.99. If you love the idea of having a mini arcade in your home, but are looking for other games, head here to check out Arcade1Up’s full lineup. 


Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart Devs Are Celebrating No Crunch, Because We Need Some Wholesome News

We’ve reported a ton in the past about the problem of crunch, an issue that hurts many industries. So when a good story comes out about it? Yeah, we want to celebrate that. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is out now and the game boasts impressive review scores across the board. With such an impressive game, a title that our own Andrew Reiner says is the first true show of power for PS5 systems, the amount of work that went into its creation has been a source of interest. With crunch being a continued problem in this industry, alongside many others, several devs are coming forward celebrating that Insomniac Games created this epic adventure without putting the team’s mental state at risk. And you know what? That’s pretty awesome. 

It all began when Insomniac game designer Grant Parker took to Twitter to share the review hub for Ratchet saying that he appreciated people “sharing this positive.” He added, “I can’t speak for anyone on the team but myself, but I didn’t crunch once. 40h weeks the whole time. It is possible to work on a great game [without] suffer.” 

Parker was quick to make sure he wasn’t speaking for anyone that may have experienced differently, so several other devs weighed in to celebrate their own success without crunch: 

One dev told me last night, “I love seeing people highlight this. I didn’t experience anything like crunch myself either, though I have been asked about it a ton over the last year. I’m really proud of our team for coming together and making a game we can all be excited about.” 

It’s important to celebrate the positives and to report on the negatives, but reporting on just the negatives and not the progress being made on bringing those issues alight simply buries the incentive to do better. I’m proud of the team for making such an incredible game. That being said, it is important to remember that a handful of people at a big studio does not mean that zero overtime was needed or even occurred, but so far? Our attempts at reaching out have been met with similar statements as the ones made above. You love to see it. 

To check out our thoughts on Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, check out our full review here


New PS5 Update Includes Usual System Performance Improvements, DualSense Tweaks

For those that have a PlayStation 5, a new PS5 update is rolling out today that tackles the usual performance enhancements. It also includes adjustments to the DualSense controller, and it looks like that firmware update tackles the battery issue players have reported. 

PS5 System Update 21.01-03.20.00

For those expecting a big flashy update, we’ve got some bad news. Outside of the DualSense, this one is pretty standard. It’s so small, that Sony didn’t even release official patch notes on the web. So why are we writing it? Mostly because of the DualSense

When booting up the PlayStation 5, a new update message can be seen. It says the standard jargon of: “This system software update improves system performance.” Which, really, could mean absolutely anything or nothing at all. Still, PlayStation users took to Reddit fairly quickly to drop a few specifics, including how the update targets the DualSense battery issue. For a while now, PS5 players have reported a bug with the controller’s battery indicator. We’re testing this out for ourselves, and we’ll update this article if we find anything that may have been missed with this update. 

The update will download automatically when the console is booted, so no worries about setting anything up. It’s a small 1GB, as well, so no worries on making room on your system for what’s new. 

Don’t have a PS5? You’re not alone. Unfortunately, it looks like that shortage could continue for a little while longer. “I don’t think demand is calming down this year and even if we secure a lot more devices and produce many more units of the PlayStation 5 next year, our supply wouldn’t be able to catch up with demand,” Chief Financial Officer Hiroki Totoki said in a statement earlier this year about the potential for restocks. That being said, small bursts of console restocks have been seen, mostly at Wal-Mart and Target, so hope is completely crushed. It’s not great, but it’s not crushed either. 

Noticed anything with the update besides DualSense tweaks? Sound off in the comment section below! 


Evil Dead Game Gameplay Will Be Revealed This Week

Pre-E3 has begun with Summer Game Fest kicking off the festivities with tons of game reveals and celebration. For those that love a good zombie tale, Evil Dead: The Game is on the way. Based off of the movie, the Evil Dead game will have gameplay revealed later this week, and we’ve got our first look at Cheryl Williams before we get the full showcase. 

The Twitter account for the upcoming game teased an image of Cheryl in a very Friday the 13th / Dead by Daylight fashion. With the traditional red font and vacant stare, this teaser is just the tip of the iceberg before we see the full gameplay reveal on Thursday, June 10. 

This will be the first time we’ve seen gameplay for Evil Dead, but what we really want to see is good ‘ol Ash. While his sister is cool and all, the world is a little bit better with the weirdness that is her brother. That being said, it is nice to see Cheryl front and center seeing as she is a playable character. Hopefully, we’ll be seeing more fan-favorites from the iconic horror movie franchise later this week. 

Interested in learning more about the game ahead of the gameplay reveal? According to the game’s official synopsis: 

“Step into the shoes of Ash Williams or his friends from the iconic Evil Dead franchise and work together in a game loaded with over-the-top co-op and PVP multiplayer action! Play as a team of four survivors, exploring, looting, crafting, managing your fear, and finding key items to seal the breach between worlds in a game inspired by all three original Evil Dead films as well as the Starz original Ash vs Evil Dead television series.”

Are you ready to see more? The Evil Dead: The Game gameplay reveal debuts on June 10. 

Are you excited to see the Williams siblings once more in the upcoming Evil Dead game? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


Battlefield 6 Watch Along With Game Informer

The Battlefield series holds a special place in the hearts of first-person shooter fans, and for good reason. Whether it’s developer DICE pioneering jaw-dropping levels of destruction or expanding multiplayer lobbies into the hundreds, the seminal series remains FPS royalty. But while the last few years have presented turbulent waters, fans are hoping the storms will start to settle starting today. To kick off the E3 2021 fun, EA is looking to turn the tides by taking the digital stage to reveal the next step in the Battlefield series.

We, unfortunately, don’t know a ton about what we’re going to see today. With the first substantive look at the game, though, we’re hoping that means a look at next-gen gameplay, but only time will tell. While you can’t bet on what we’ll see today, you can count on Game Informer to be there to watch along with you. The Alexes (Van Aken and Stadnik) are taking over for E3 2021 and we’ll be right along with you to bring the hype, give you our spiciest takes possible, and react live to all the big news from the day. We’ll be going live at 8:45 A.M. CT for a little preshow action to discuss DICE’s iconic series and our hopes for what Battlefield 6 will bring. 

Our Battlefield stream is just the first of the E3 season. We’ll be going live on Twitch and watching all the biggest streams of the week, including the Summer Game Fest, Microsoft/Bethesda’s conference, and more. Be sure to check out our E3 2021 hub on the site to stay up-to-date with all the earth-shattering moments from the video game industry’s biggest week of the year!

Excited to finally see more from the next entry in the Battlefield series? Be sure to sound off in the comment section below to let us know (respectfully) what you want to see from the day’s stream!


GI Show – E3 2021 Predictions

Click to watch embedded media

It’s finally that special time of year again. E3 2021 is in the air and we can’t wait to see what some of the biggest names in the video game industry have in store for their legions of fans. But one does not celebrate such an occasion with a casual 15-minute chat.

We dedicated a whole special edition of The GI Show to give our clairvoyant predictions about what the likes of Microsoft, Nintendo, and more have to surprise us when E3 (and Geoff Keighley) open their digital doors to the masses. Will we see anything from huge tentpoles such as The Elder Scrolls VI or The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2? What will PlayStation’s presence entail? How are we going to contain ourselves when Halo Infinite comes on screen? Only time will tell.

The wait for E3 week (weekend? Month? How do we quantify this anymore?) can be excruciating, but we have just the remedy to tide you over. Join Alex Stadnik, Liana Ruppert, Marcus Stewart, and new-hire John Carson as they dish on what they think will go down during gaming’s biggest events!

Thanks for listening! Please make sure to leave feedback below and share the episode if you enjoyed it. You can watch the video above, subscribe and listen to the audio on iTunes or Google Playlisten on SoundCloudstream it on Spotify, or download the MP3 at the bottom of the page. Also, be sure to send your questions to for a chance to have them answered on the show!

Our thanks to The Rapture Twins for The Game Informer Show’s intro song. You can hear more of their music on their website.

To jump to a particular point in the discussion, check out the time stamps below.

00:00:00 – Introduction
00:04:20 – Mother 3 on Switch
00:06:30 – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2
00:11:05 – New PS5 Look
00:13:39 – The Last of Us Part II Multiplayer
00:16:18 – Xbox Sega Partnership
00:19:53 – Sunset Overdrive News
00:22:57 – Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II
00:24:41 – Playdead’s New Game
00:28:51 – NetherRealm Studios New Game
00:34:52 – The Elder Scrolls VI
00:40:15 – Resident Evil: Code Veronica Remake
00:46:15 – New Smash Bros. Ultimate Character
00:51:06 – Project Triangle Strategy
00:51:59 – Advance Wars
00:53:17 – Final Fantasy VII Remake 2
00:54:06 – New Fable Gameplay
00:55:22 – Kojima Takes The Xbox Stage
00:57:40 – Avowed Full Reveal
00:59:04 – Back 4 Blood Beta/Alpha Announcement
00:59:56 – Bioshock Reveal


Return Of The Obra Dinn Creator Lucas Pope Reveals New Playdate Title

Panic’s Playdate handheld had a big coming out party today with a video update that showed off its first slate of games and revealed its price/pre-order date. One of the most exciting announcements was the news that Lucas Pope, acclaimed creator of Papers Please and Return of the Obra Dinn, is making a new game exclusively for the bite-sized handheld. 

During the video Pope showed off a brief snippet of a game called Mars After Midnight. He describes the game as “less death, more laughs” and something he wanted his kids to be able to enjoy. The gameplay scene is set at an anger management meeting for cyclops, with a sign advertising the session taped to a letter slot-style door.  

When something knocks on the slot, Pope turns the Playdate’s analog crank to flip the slot open, revealing a curious monster on the other side. A new monster appears each time he opens and closes the door, showing off their goofy designs. Meanwhile, Pope uses the d-pad to pan the camera in different directions. There’s a hint of 3D depth to panning, as the camera slightly rotates instead of simply moving up/down, left/right on a flat plane. You can check out the demonstration yourself in the video below, beginning at the 7:35 mark. 

Click here to watch embedded media

Pope says that Mars After Midnight is still early in development so he doesn’t have a release timeline to share at this time. “It’s not much, and I can’t say I know what I’m doing, but we’ll see how it goes,” he says in the video. The game certainly looks charming and the crank mechanic, simple as it might look on the surface, is a fun touch that sells the Playdate’s unique features. 

To find out why we’re excited to see what Lucas Pope cooks up next, check out our reviews for Return of the Obra Dinn and Papers, Please.

What do you think of Mars After Midnight? Are you interested in buying a Playdate? Let us know in the comments!


Playdate Handheld Update Reveals Its Price, First Slate Of Games, Pre-Order Launch, And More

In May 2019, Panic, the publisher of Firewatch and Untitled Goose Game, revealed it was developing its own gaming handheld, the Playdate. This cute device made waves for its sunny yellow color, unique analog crank, and the simple yet charming graphics of its all-digital software. It’s been a while since we heard anything about it, but Panic ended that silence today by airing a video chock full of updates for the device where it showed off its first slate of games, a big accessory, as well as its price and pre-order window. 

Games make or break any platform, and Playdate’s initial library consists of 24 original games, a collection Panic dubs Season One. These games consist of titles designed with inventive mechanics that take advantage of the system’s unique features, such as its crank (which is a form of analog stick). Every game in Season One is free, and owners will receive 2 games per week over 12 weeks. You can check out some of the games in action in the presentation below (at the 3:35 mark), but Panic prefers to surprise owners by not sharing any details about the games, title included, until they hit the system. 

Click here to watch embedded media

Panic has a long list of indie developers currently tinkering away on Playdate games. Noteworthy creators include a new game by Return of the Obra Dinn creator Lucas Pope (which you can read about here) and Bennett Foddy of Getting Over It fame. Panic is also partnering with up-and-coming studios from marginalized communities under the mentorship of development studio, Sweet Baby, Inc. The company states that in the future, creators will be able to sell Playdate titles independently that can be sideloaded onto the handheld and will discuss other distribution methods at a later date. 

To further encourage game-making, Panic is releasing a free game creation tool called Pulp. This all-in-one tool allows designers to develop Playdate games using just a web browser, where they can tinker with graphics, write scripts, score music, and more. Once the game is done, it can be uploaded to Playdate. Pulp will be available later this year. 

Panic also revealed Playdate’s first accessory, the Playdate Stereo Dock (pictured above). It connects magnetically to Playdate and serves as both a battery charger and has a Bluetooth speaker for increased and improved game audio. The dock is meant to sit on your desk, and has a couple of nifty pen holders that you can use to house Panic’s official Playdate ballpoint pen (which comes bundled with the Dock). Panic has also partnered with online radio station Poolsuite FM to create an app of curated summer songs that players can listen to through the Stereo Dock. There’s no word on the price of the Stereo Dock or when it releases.  

However, we do know how much the Playdate itself will cost: $179. That price, of course, includes its first season of games. You can also order a protective case for your Playdate for $29 or buy both in a bundle for $199. 

When can you buy a Playdate? Panic didn’t reveal a release date but it will begin taking pre-orders in July. Exactly when next month is unknown, but Panic promises it won’t surprise customers and will announce the pre-order date a week before it goes live. Pre-orders will take place over at

Panic assures fans the Playdate won’t sell out for good after pre-order day. The company will continue taking orders going forward and will gradually ship units as they receive them from the factory. Of course, those who place their orders earlier will get their handhelds sooner. Panic also wants to temper expectations by reminding customers that anything can go wrong and that Playdates may take a while to arrive due to global part shortages and COVID. With that in mind, Panic says you can cancel pre-orders anytime for any reason. Panic promises to share more update about the Playdate in the coming weeks.

What did you think of the presentation? Are you interested in picking up a Playdate down the road? Let us know in the comments!


Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Teams Up With Disney Plus Once More

One of the perks of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, other than the rotation of free games and day one additions, is the inclusion of Xbox Live. That being said, Microsoft has added a few more perks since the membership’s birth, including offering up a trial for Disney Plus in the past. For those feeling some FOMO over all of the Marvel hype over the Disney subscription service, Team Green has just announced that it is bringing back the Disney Plus membership trial for those with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. 

The latest offer is back starting today, giving Xbox fans a chance to enjoy classic Disney experiences as well as new shows to binge-watch. Wandavision, The Mandalorian, Winter Soldier, there are so many. With Loki also dropping this week, the Disney Plus envy is real. For those with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, you don’t have to sit on the sidelines; you can watch along with the rest of the Marvel fans. 

How it works is that Ultimate members will be given a 30-day trial to Disney Plus via the Game Pass Perks system. As long as you don’t have an active Disney subscription, you qualify to cash in on this, regardless if you’ve taken advantage of it in the past or not. This is also available for Ultimate members on Xbox consoles and PC, so there’s no platform discrimination here despite the library discrepancies. 

If you sign up for the free trial, I recommend using either a debit gift card or PayPal. That, or set a reminder. The reason for that recommendation is that it will ask for your payment information, which is standard for any sort of subscription trial (gaming or not). By doing it with the gift card, you won’t have to worry about auto-renewal. If you do it by PayPal or set yourself a reminder, you can make sure to cancel before the end of the 30-day trial to avoid paying for a re-up. Pretty easy, but also easy to forget. Just a heads up! 

The latest offering for Disney Plus is available now. To learn more, check out the official Xbox blog post here

What are your thoughts on Disney Plus and its growing line-up of shows and movies? Are you excited for Loki on the horizon, or are you still playing catch up with the other Marvel shows out there? Shout out those thoughts loud and proud in the comment section below! 


First Dungeons & Dragons Movie Set Photos Revealed

Even though the Dungeons & Dragons movie has been delayed for a new 2023 launch date, the latest film adaptation is well underway. With a few of the casting decisions confirmed so far, including Chris Pine, Hugh Grant, and Michelle Rodriguez, we’ve got a new look at the big screen take with new Dungeons & Dragons movie on-set photos. 

As spotted by Comicbook’s Christian Hoffer, images from the D&D flick have begun popping up online. While not fully decked out set photos, it is interesting to get just a small taste of what the upcoming movie experience will have to offer tabletop fans. Check out the photos below to see a small glimpse into the 2023 film: 

Much of the photos come by way of The Chronicle with the cast filming Dungeons & Dragons at Alnwick Castle in Northumberland. This is a popular filming site that Harry Potter fans may recognize, and it looks like the team is in full swing of getting their fantasy on. 

Taking point on the upcoming movie is both John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein as the film’s directors. We also know that Chris Pine, Regé-Jean Page, Hugh Grant, Justice Smith, and Michelle Rodriguez are all signed on as part of the cast, though specific storyline details are still being kept under wraps. 

There are also a few other Dungeons & Dragons projects in the works currently with numerous live-action TV takes. No word yet on if this delay will impact those as well, but the possibility is there given that the timing was specifically centered around the movie’s release. 

For this Dungeons & Dragons movie, however, the release date is set in stone. Taking place within the Forgotten Realms, the Dungeons & Dragons movie arrives on March 3, 2023. 

Are you excited for a Dungeons & Dragons movie with Chris Pine at the forefront? What are you hoping to see from the latest adaption? Sound off with your thoughts in the comments below! 


Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart Review – Dazzling Dimensional Duality

Click to watch embedded media

Publisher: PlayStation Studios
Developer: Insomniac Games

June 11, 2021

Rating: Everyone 10+
Reviewed on: PlayStation 5

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a sequel that clings tightly to its storied heritage, never once betraying the foundation that was laid in 2002. From the second I took control of the fuzzy Lombax again, my muscle memory kicked in, and I was flipping through the air and smashing boxes like I had never stopped. Insomniac Games made a sequel for longtime fans that hits the right classic notes, feeling like a glorious reunion, even though these characters never left our side. The heavy doses of nostalgia are handled with care but are only half of what make this sequel a must-play for PlayStation 5’s early adopters.

Rift Apart is PlayStation 5’s showpiece. It checks all of the next-gen boxes, dazzling with its power, speed, sound, and control. When coupled with this series’ tried-and-true gameplay, the experience absolutely sizzles, creating a fun rollercoaster ride from start to finish.

One of the coolest technological feats in Rift Apart is how Ratchet travels between dimensions. As he battles his way across an alien world, a window into another reality may appear in front of him, and he can bravely leap through it. The transition between locations happens in a flash, and Ratchet is suddenly standing in an entirely different world or reality. These transitional moments are as magical and fun as they sound, often wowing you with just how different the next world is compared to the one you are currently standing in.

Insomniac sometimes uses these quick transitions for exciting gameplay sequences, like riding an out-of-control beast at breakneck speeds through a series of dimensional rifts. Portals are also placed in combat areas to allow for quicker environmental traversal, a touch that sounds small, but adds another layer of strategy to the mix.

Through a nicely penned story, we quickly learn Ratchet and Clank are bouncing between two specific dimensions, both holding the same planets and characters. The always amusing Doctor Nefarious thinks he has a better shot at conquering the alternate dimension. Since events have unfolded in different ways in each reality, the characters could be radically different. For instance, in the reality fans know, we have Skid McMarx, a burnout surfer who didn’t do much. In the other dimension, Skid is a skilled resistance fighter named Phantom. Ratchet also appears to have a double in the other existence, and her name is Rivet, a new character who breathes fresh life into this series.

Rivet energizes the story and is brought to life through a number of mysteries that give her a unique pulse. As her tale unfolds, Insomniac delivers satisfying answers as to who she is and what happened to her. She is playable for half of the adventure, but is sadly a carbon copy of Ratchet on the battlefield. She doesn’t have any distinguishing features that set her apart. The duo shares the same weapons, upgrades, armors, and experience points earned – a solution that reduces confusion and keeps the focus on making progress that, again, strips each character of individuality. Yes, this plays into the duality of dimensions concept, and keeps the gameplay flowing in a consistent way, but it also feels like a missed opportunity to change things up and truly create a new character.

While retaining the same colorful cartoon look we’ve come to expect from each installment in this series, the level of detail in Rift Apart is through the roof in jaw-dropping ways. Don’t be surprised if you stop dead in your tracks to inspect the detail on the most trivial of things. I marveled at the wool on a sheep, and audibly said “wow” when I saw the sheer scale of a Godzilla-sized robot that looms over one of the levels. I also realized that, given how densely populated areas are, it’s a little harder to locate stacks of breakable boxes, which I consider a positive, as I was paying more attention to the environment. There’s that much going on in each world. Insomniac’s artists did a bang-up job dreaming up colorful alien worlds for the player to traverse. Trust me when I say you should play it in Performance RT mode (which delivers 60 frames-per-second and raytracing).

The DualSense controller also mesmerizes at times, enhancing each weapon with tailored haptic feedback and clever adaptive trigger functionality. Each gun delivers a distinct and satisfying kick – whether it’s the rhythmic pulsing of the Ricochet Gun or being able to feel the Negaton Collider cook in your hands before it sends out a rattle with its energy blast. I also really like how each gun offers two firing modes: a light tap of the trigger performs the first, which is usually more precise and conservative, and a full pull basically unleashes hell.

This series has always been known for its inventive weapons and just how different they are from one another, and Rift Apart delivers a nice selection of firearms that gives the player everything they need – like a rocket launcher and sniper rifle. The most inventive weapon this time around is the Topiary Sprinkler, which turns enemies into beautiful shrubbery, freezing their movements for a few seconds. This weapon, like many in this grouping, has great combo potential, and help keep mobs at bay. The new dimensional dash is the handiest new addition to combat, allowing for laser beams and melee strikes to be evaded with ease. This move also aids traversal in fun ways.

Click here to watch embedded media

Most missions that Ratchet and Rivet undertake are good fun, and often deliver huge set-piece moments with story sequences sewn right into them, just like Insomniac’s Spider-Man games. You can freely move between planets and determine if you want to tackle a side mission or the next story beat. Some enemy types are repeated a little much (especially in the arena), but the action is nicely diversified, and the flow between locations is excellent. I wasn’t a big fan of the Clank or spider-bot minigames, but they offer a breather at the right times from the frenzied combat.

I had a smile on my face most of the way through Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. It’s a great continuation of the series that is just a joy to play. It steals your eye with its stunning vistas, makes you care about the characters, and is loaded to the hilt with fan service (especially in the alternate dimension and a weapon you have to assemble). Insomniac clearly had a blast working on this game and leaves us with a tease for an even bigger adventure right before the credits roll.

Score: 9

Summary: Insomniac Games’ latest sequel roars with excitement and shows us what PlayStation 5 is capable of.

Concept: The spacefaring duo is back in a wild and beautiful PlayStation 5 exclusive that shows the capabilities of Sony’s new hardware

Graphics: Whether you are playing it in 4K or at 60 frames-per-second, Rift Apart is a visual dynamo that lights up the screen with cluttered sci-fi cityscapes, colorful aliens, and intricately detailed texturing

Sound: Pitch perfect in terms of both the thumping orchestrated score and voice work by the cast

Playability: The DualSense controller gets a good workout. The haptic feedback, adaptive triggers, and 3D audio continually enhance the already great combat

Entertainment: It’s as long as any other Ratchet game, but it feels like it flies by in a flash, and is a hard one to put down

Replay: Moderately High

Click to Purchase


Capcom E3 2021 Showcase Will Feature Resident Evil Village, Monster Hunter, And More

The Capcom E3 2021 showcase lands on June 14, and the company has given fans a sneak peek at what they can expect to see during the live stream event. We’ve got more Resident Evil Village on the way as well are more on Monster Hunter. Check out our first look at what’s ahead in the new video from Capcom below! 

E3 2021 kicks off next week, but the fun has already started earlier this month with first looks, teasers, and Summer Game Fest with Geoff Keighley. Capcom’s stage time will kick off on June 14 at 2:30 p.m. Pacific and will feature The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles, Monster Hunter Stories 2, Monster Hunter Rise, and Resident Evil Village. Will there be more shown not teased in the update from Capcom? Possibly! But for now, here’s what we’ve got on the horizon: 

Click here to watch embedded media

Regarding E3 itself, the all-digital event begins on June 12 and will run until June 15. There will be an awards ceremony on the final day, a ceremony that will recap the biggest announcements from the week. For those interested in seeing what the lineup looks like, you can check out the full E3 2021 schedule right here. Some times are set for TBD because exact slots aren’t confirmed yet, but we update that article daily when new information is shared. 

Regarding the games listed as part of Capcom’s showcase, I’m really interested to see what the studio has in store for Resident Evil Village. Will this just a dedicated segment thanking players for enjoying their time as Ethan Winters, or will this be a showcase of more content like a possible expansion? We’ll be finding out soon enough! 

Tinfoil hats on, Game Informer readers! What do you think Capcom will have to show during its streaming event? What are you hoping to see? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


Cris Tales – New Gameplay Today (1440p)

Click here to watch embedded media

Crisbell is a special girl. The machinations of fate have granted her the power to manipulate time. She’s now able to peer into past and future versions of her world at will, which she’ll put to great use trying to protect everyone she loves from a potentially dark future. Joined by her talking frog pal Matias, her warrior companion Christian, and other colorful allies, Crisbell embarks on a journey to rescue her fairytale kingdoms from an impending threat. After all, time is of the essence. 

Cris Tales is an upcoming RPG from Colombian developers Dreams Uncorporated and SYCK and publisher Modus Games. The indie game takes inspiration from classic titles such as Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy VI with its turn-based combat and world design but adds an interesting wrinkle with its time-manipulation mechanic. Players can send enemies into the past or future, which affects each foe in different ways that can be both beneficial and harmful. Join Alex Stadnik, Marcus Stewart, and Jason Guisao as they take a look at this promising and beautiful role-playing adventure. 

Cris Tales launches July 20 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC. If this look at the game has piqued your interest, there’s a playable demo on consoles and PC that you can check out right now. 

If you enjoyed this look at Cris Tales, be sure to check out previous episodes of New Gameplay Today. We’ve recently taken looks at big titles such as Scarlet Nexus and Mass Effect Legendary Edition and promising indies such as Stonefly and Where the Heart Leads. Also, remember to subscribe to the official Game Informer YouTube channel for more episodes as well as other great video content. 

How do you think Cris Tales is shaping up? Let us know in the comments!


Bandai Namco Shuts Down Scarlet Nexus Xbox Game Pass Rumors

What do we say to the god of rumors? “Not today.” At least that’s what Bandai Namco did when rumors began to swirl out of control that Scarlet Nexus would be an Xbox Game Pass addition at launch. Could the game come to Xbox Game Pass? Absolutely, but Bandai wanted to set the record straight that it wasn’t happening on day one. 

Microsoft has been surprising fans lately with what does and doesn’t make the cut for Xbox Game Pass. The most surprising move was when Team Green added MLB The Show 21 to the evolving subscription service, so seeing speculation around what’s next is easy to get swept up in. However, when rumors started gaining traction that Bandai’s newest RPG would be making a launch day debut, the company quickly offered some clarification. 

“We have no plans to bring Scarlet Nexus to Xbox Game Pass at this time and are excited about its launch on Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC on June 25,” said a Bandia Namco representative in a statement to VGC

Click here to watch embedded media

It never hurts to clarify and be transparent, especially with E3 2021 hype in full bloom, making rumors even more rampant and easy to believe. For those excited about this science fiction RPG, Scarlet Nexus is created by many Tales of Vesperia team members, combining an anime art style with fast-paced combat for those that love a good challenge. 

To learn more about Scarlet Nexus, like actual confirmed news and hands-on impressions, you can check out our previous coverage with our game hub here

Thoughts on Scarlet Nexus before its arrival on June 25? How about any hot takes regarding the Xbox Game Pass membership? Shout them out loud and proud in the comment section below! 


Superman, Rick & Morty, And Aliens Are Coming To Fortnite Chapter 2 Season 7 Invasion

While crossovers in games are nothing new, Fortnite is arguably the king of mashups in the gaming space. With so many hints in the battle royale adventure pointing towards some form of alien invasion, Epic Games has seen the Mass Effect hype and said, “we’ve got aliens too!” for Fortnite Chapter 2, Season 7. Just kidding, it’s not related to Mass Effect, but I had to do it for those angry at how much I talk about it. Hi! 

Fortnite Chapter 2 Season 7 sees an explosive attack on the world we’ve come to know and love, and following the invasion comes a border of aliens bent on destruction. Not one to take an attack lying down, the Imagined Order under the helm of Doctor Slone pushes back against this mystifying new enemy in between fishing, emotes, and landing that sweet headshot.

Click here to watch embedded media

As with any season, there is new gear to unlock. The Battle Pass also offers new Outfits that are unique to Fortnite and based on other entertainment properties. Since we’re talking crossovers, let’s break down what players will see when they dive all-in.

Rick & Morty are crashing the party with Rick Sanchez himself, the “Rickest Rick,” according to Epic Games. You can’t have aliens without Superman himself, either. The caped hero also joins the battle royale party alongside Doctor Slone, Joey, Guggimon, Kymera, Sunny, Zyg, and more. Don’t want to play somebody else? That’s cool too! You can also create your own alien with the Battle Pass, offering customizable options for gamers to play with. 

You can see more of what’s in this season’s Battle Pass in the video below: 

Click here to watch embedded media

To learn more about the new weapons, different characters, and what the narrative is for the latest season, feel free to mosey on over to the official Epic Games blog post right here to uncover it all. 

Are you excited for Fortnite Chapter 2, Season 7 and the arrival of aliens? With so many oddball crossovers, which game would you like to see make it into Fortnite’s world next? Shout those thoughts out loud and proud in the comment section below! 


Why Fans Are Excited After Destiny 2: The Witch Queen Old Chicago Teaser

Earlier this month, Bungie teased a new piece of artwork for a future Destiny 2 expansion with The Witch Queen. Though a small image, it set the Guardian community alight with excitement over the implications that we’re heading to Old Chicago. So what is Old Chicago, and why are players hyped about its return? Let’s break it down

First things first, let’s look at the render itself. You can see a few small tweaks to the Hunter helmet in the below image, changes seen from the previous tease in earlier concept art. You can also see the luscious backdrop behind the focal character. While it could be argued that the backdrop looks like it could potentially be EDZ or Nessus, most players are pretty convinced that this means we’re going back to Old Chicago to the swamplands. The swamps of Old Chicago have been mentioned in the past through the series’ evolving lore, but it’s never been a physical place that Guardians could visit. But that could be changing. 

Each expansion takes players to new locations to uncover more about the universe of Light vs. Dark. With Beyond Light racing towards completion, Guardians are already looking at what’s next beyond Europa. In the image at the top of the article, you can see previous Old Chicago concept art that Bungie has revealed in the past. Note the similar environment? 

Why Old Chicago? 

Bungie has shared concept art pre-expansions in the past, concept art that never actually made it into the game. We saw it most recently with Beyond Light, and that’s not uncommon in games, but with Bungie having referenced it several times both in lore and in artwork, it looks like this could be the next step for our Guardians. With the creepy backdrop, this makes the recent grab of a former Resident Evil Village developer to work over at Bungie on Destiny 2 all the more exciting when looking at potential horror elements. More so when looking back at the horror elements previously experienced with the Shadowkeep expansion. 

With the previous descriptors of Old Chicago, courtesy of the studio itself, being a dark swampland, the above teaser image fits that mold perfectly. It also pairs nicely with the idea that The Witch Queen will offer a new zone, which is typical for DLC when big expansions come out. Paired with the various lore tabs (like Pyrrhic Ascent) for Old Chicago and the increase in frequency concerning those nods, I’m willing to bet that this area will play a significant role in the next step of the Destiny 2 storyline.

Given Bungie’s penchant for transforming older concept art into exciting new areas to explore, well…

What is Old Chicago? 

We’ve never actually been there, so we only have the lore drops to go from, but Bungie has described this swampland as an area largely littered with treasure and mystery. It’s here that Guardians that step into the swamplands are met with an enemy guarding the old secrets, secrets about an older civilization that predates the Collapse. Who are these creatures that hound Guardian footsteps? We don’t know, nor do we know what sort of danger they pose or even if they’ll make it into the game, to begin with, but it’s looking likely that we’re going to be finding out soon.  

With The Witch Queen having Guardians facing against Savathun once more (especially with the song now fully infiltrating the Last City), Old Chicago would be the perfect backdrop for this evolution. Savathun is dark, manipulative, scary. A creepy and mysterious swampland? The perfect setting for this confrontation. It’s also been rumored that another subclass will be introduced, not unlike Stasis for Beyond Light. Some have mentioned a sort of decay-like power, though Bungie has not confirmed anything at this time. 

What are you hoping to see from Destiny 2: The Witch Queen? Are you convinced that we’re finally heading to Old Chicago? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


Why Fans Are Excited After Possible Destiny 2: The Witch Queen Old Chicago Teaser

Earlier this month, Bungie teased a new piece of artwork for a future Destiny 2 expansion with The Witch Queen. Though a small image, it set the Guardian community alight with excitement over the implications that we’re heading to Old Chicago. So what is Old Chicago, and why are players hyped about its return? Let’s break it down

First things first, let’s look at the render itself. You can see a few small tweaks to the Hunter helmet in the below image, changes seen from the previous tease in earlier concept art. You can also see the luscious backdrop behind the focal character. While it could be argued that the backdrop looks like it could potentially be EDZ or Nessus, most players are pretty convinced that this means we’re going back to Old Chicago to the swamplands. The swamps of Old Chicago have been mentioned in the past through the series’ evolving lore, but it’s never been a physical place that Guardians could visit. But that could be changing. 

Each expansion takes players to new locations to uncover more about the universe of Light vs. Dark. With Beyond Light racing towards completion, Guardians are already looking at what’s next beyond Europa. In the image at the top of the article, you can see previous Old Chicago concept art that Bungie has revealed in the past. Note the similar environment? 

Why Old Chicago? 

Bungie has shared concept art pre-expansions in the past, concept art that never actually made it into the game. We saw it most recently with Beyond Light, and that’s not uncommon in games, but with Bungie having referenced it several times both in lore and in artwork, it looks like this could be the next step for our Guardians. With the creepy backdrop, this makes the recent grab of a former Resident Evil Village developer to work over at Bungie on Destiny 2 all the more exciting when looking at potential horror elements. More so when looking back at the horror elements previously experienced with the Shadowkeep expansion. 

With the previous descriptors of Old Chicago, courtesy of the studio itself, being a dark swampland, the above teaser image fits that mold perfectly. It also pairs nicely with the idea that The Witch Queen will offer a new zone, which is typical for DLC when big expansions come out. Paired with the various lore tabs (like Pyrrhic Ascent) for Old Chicago and the increase in frequency concerning those nods, I’m willing to bet that this area will play a significant role in the next step of the Destiny 2 storyline.

Given Bungie’s penchant for transforming older concept art into exciting new areas to explore, well…

What is Old Chicago? 

We’ve never actually been there, so we only have the lore drops to go from, but Bungie has described this swampland as an area largely littered with treasure and mystery. It’s here that Guardians that step into the swamplands are met with an enemy guarding the old secrets, secrets about an older civilization that predates the Collapse. Who are these creatures that hound Guardian footsteps? We don’t know, nor do we know what sort of danger they pose or even if they’ll make it into the game, to begin with, but it’s looking likely that we’re going to be finding out soon.  

With The Witch Queen having Guardians facing against Savathun once more (especially with the song now fully infiltrating the Last City), Old Chicago would be the perfect backdrop for this evolution. Savathun is dark, manipulative, scary. A creepy and mysterious swampland? The perfect setting for this confrontation. It’s also been rumored that another subclass will be introduced, not unlike Stasis for Beyond Light. Some have mentioned a sort of decay-like power, though Bungie has not confirmed anything at this time. 

What are you hoping to see from Destiny 2: The Witch Queen? Are you convinced that we’re finally heading to Old Chicago? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below! 


Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart Has Sunset Overdrive Crossover, More PlayStation Mashups

There is already a lot of hype regarding the upcoming Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart game, but fans have truly begun to lose their minds when PlayStation confirmed that there are a few crossovers happening within this universe. Most notably? Sunset Overdrive, a game that was previously an Xbox exclusive, but now that Sony owns the studio behind it – Insomniac Games – anything goes

Insomniac Games first teased the Sunset Overdrive crossover on its social media with art depicting Fizzie, the drink from the game’s mascot, getting sucked through a portal into the Ratchet & Clank universe. Then, other PlayStation titles started doing the same: 

Horizon Zero Dawn, Uncharted, Sunset Overdrive? All of the above artwork can be seen, so what’s the deal? Thanks to the newly added RYNO 8 weapon, certain aspects of other games will be making their way into Rift Apart via the gun’s portal (not that Portal). Why fight fire with fire when you can fight with entirely different universes instead? 

With Sunset Overdrive being the first crossover shown, the rumors are alight once more that the first Sunset Overdrive is finally making its way over onto PlayStation platforms with the hope that a sequel will eventually follow. Paired with the earlier leak that seems to suggest some form of “revamped” Sunset Overdrive experience could be coming to PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5, Sony, at this time, has yet to confirm that anything is on the way. That being said, the Summer months are rife with new game announcements. While Sony won’t be a part of E3 this year, that doesn’t mean it’s got nothing to show during that allotted time period. 

What do you think about Sunset Overdrive and other PlayStation properties making their way into Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart? If you could have your dream crossover, what would it be? Sound off with your thoughts in the comments below! 


Dragon Age 4 And The Future Of Thedas

Dragon Age 4 is poised to take fans of Thedas where they have never been within the video game franchise: Tevinter. While the associated novels and comics have taken us deep within the underbelly of power-driven mages and a society built on the backs of slaves, the games themselves have only skirted this expansive location through characters met throughout the franchise. We were introduced to Fenris in Dragon Age 2, an escaped slave that teased the horrors his kind-faced at the hands of blood magic-wielding magisters. We were later enthralled by Dorian Pavus in Inquisition, an Altus on his way to becoming a magister; a compassionate character bent on making his countrymen see where they have gone wrong while learning key lessons about his own problematic upbringing. He was also the victim of an attempted blood ritual, by his own father nonetheless, due to Tevinter’s scorned eye on homosexual relationships. In the same game, we also met Cremisius “Krem” Aclassi, a transgender soldier stuck in the middle of slavery and the elite, a class abandoned by common kindness, again chased out for being anything other than what Tevinter wants a citizen to be.

The games leading up to this point have painted horrific pictures of what Tevinter is like, as well as Antiva where we waded through the bloody narratives of life there through the assassin Zevran. So much of this corner of Thedas is both explored and ignored entirely, a paradox made even more evident with the most recent comic series with Blue Wraith that stars a returning Fenris taking back his homeland of Tevinter by killing slave owners and magisters alike. 

But more than learning about these different parts of Thedas, the true implications revealed in Inquisition regarding the origins of magic, the Blights, and the downfall of the ancient elves has completely turned the lore we thought we knew on its head. The third game threw curveball after curveball about the Forgotten Ones, the Dread Wolf, and the death of an elite society. We even learned about the creation of the Veil itself, an otherworldly place that is heavily set in the games when regarding the Fade and the territory of mages. 

What makes Dragon Age 4 so exciting is that it has the potential to tie up many of the loose ends that are stretched between the games and their printed companions, setting the stage for a mind-blowing conclusion to a build-up that first began with the humble beginnings of Dragon Age Origins.

BioWare also previously revealed concept art that very much alluded to the possibility of having a Mortalitasi companion, or at very least a Mortalitasi key character, bringing the Nevarran Death Magic front and center. This would be an opportunity beyond the anime-style movie that bore Cassandra Penteghast’s beginnings before we met her in Dragon Age II, and later as a companion in Dragon Age Inquisition. 

All of the fan theories, unanswered questions, and completely new areas of exploration have a chance to shine with Dragon Age 4, especially given the teaser trailer shown at The Game Awards 2020 where we saw the innards of Tevinter with sky-crested buildings teeming with magic. If done right, this could be the game meant to be a love letter to fans that have traversed Thedas through the years, as well as an incredible motivator for those interested in exploring the other mediums that celebrate the iconic BioWare franchise. 

Want just a little more Dragon Age? Duh, of course you do! Let’s chat about where the heck is Sandal, shall we? Join that conversation right here


Mass Effect Legendary Edition Update Addresses Trophy Issue, Pre-Rendered Cutscenes

A new Mass Effect Legendary Edition update is here and fixes some of the more unusual issues players were having. Issues like Trophy glitches, pre-rendered cutscene darkness, and more. 

While the Legendary Edition is far less buggy than the original trilogy (big ‘ol head Shepard from Mass Effect 2, anyone?), that doesn’t mean it was perfect. Some players reported issues with the Paramour or Kill Count tracker achievements/trophies, while others noted headset connectivity issues. BioWare announced its plans for a patch to fix many of the reported bugs, and now that update is ready for all to enjoy, including a few PC-specific tweaks that are needed in order to fully enjoy the Normandy (and Garrus) once more. 

Mass Effect Legendary Edition update – June 7, 2021

For the full patch notes, courtesy of BioWare, see below:


  • English spoken dialogue can now be selected separately from subtitle language
  • Resolved issues with unlocking some achievements/trophies, such as the Paramours or kill count trackers
  • Corrected pre-rendered cutscenes that were darker than intended after the previous update
  • Wireless headsets/devices no longer cause issues with the Xbox launcher
  • Improved PC performance across various hardware configurations, including on Virmire
  • Fixed an issue on PC where non-standard characters in the operating system’s username would prevent the game from launching
    • Removed the dependency on the AVX instruction set in the launcher
  • Other minor calibrations and fixes, including some instances of crashing

Mass Effect

  • Fixed an issue that prevented players from reaching the max level 
  • Fixed an issue where tier VII Spectre – Master Gear was inaccessible
  • Various collision improvements
  • Fixed an issue that would prevent the ability to interact with objects
  • Lowered audio volume on Mass Relay load screens
  • Improved eye animations for male characters in some scenes

Mass Effect 2

  • Toned down the intensity of fog on Illium
  • Fixed an issue where a character’s eyes at the end of the Overlord DLC were unintentionally red
  • Reduced the max credits that can be carried from Mass Effect to Mass Effect 2 down to 100k for a more balanced early-game progression
    • Credit carryover maximum now matches carryover from the original release
    • Posthumous banking fees are a lot! It’s a great way to dodge taxes.

Mass Effect 3

  • Resolved an issue where English dialogue no longer played during the Citadel DLC for German and Italian localizations
  • Fixed an issue where some key characters weren’t appearing as intended during the Citadel DLC

We enjoyed our time with the trilogy remaster with our own Kim Wallace scoring the Legendary Edition a 9 out of 10. You can check out her review right here to see our thoughts on the return to the trilogy. You can also mosey on over to our game hub here for more features surrounding some of our favorite aliens, interviews with the devs, recommended mods, and so much more.