News: 04/12/14-04/18/14

Another week of news here on The Rhodes Review! There wasn’t really anything big or exciting this week, in my opinion, but there were still some stories and videos that caught my eye this week. 

Sid Meier’s Beyond Earth

The Walking Dead: Season 2

The Watch_Dogs eBOOK //n/DARK

Octodad: Dadliest Catch

Alien: Isolation

PAX South

PlayStation 4

News/Videos

Sid Meier’s Beyond Earth

home_us2

(Civilization.com)

I believe it was at PAX East this past weekend that Fireaxis announced their next game in the Civilization series: Beyond Earth. A sci-fi take on their genre. Check out the preview trailer below.

This is a really interesting premise for a game and I’ll be keeping my eye on it in the coming months. I don’t particularly plan on reviewing it, but who knows? I do love some good sci-fi!

The Walking Dead: Season 2

twd s2 vita

The Walking Dead: Season 2 is coming to PlayStation Vita next week and other new formats soon.

The Press Release from Telltale Games:

“Today we are pleased to announce that the critically-acclaimed second season of The Walking Dead: The Game premieres on PlayStation®Vita next week.

The Walking Dead: Season Two, Episode 1 – ‘All That Remains’ and Episode 2 – ‘A House Divided’ will be available for download for PS Vita via PlayStation®Store in North America on Tuesday, April 22; and in Europe on Wednesday, April 23. Each episode will be available for just US$4.99 or equivalent individually, or players can save 20% by purchasing the Season Pass, which includes access to Episodes 1 through 5 as they become available, including the upcoming Episode 3 – ‘In Harm’s Way.’

The Game of the Year award-winning first season is also now available on new platforms. The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season, which includes all 5 episodes in Season One plus the ‘400 Days’ DLC, is now available for Android-based devices via Google Play, NVIDIA Shield via TegraZone, and Amazon Fire TV and Amazon Kindle HDX via Amazon. The first episode in the series, ‘A New Day’, is currently available FREE on all of these platforms.

The critically-acclaimed second season of The Walking Dead will also be coming to these platforms in the near future. Be sure to follow @telltalegames on twitter for latest updates leading to the premiere of Season Two on these devices.”
No matter the format, I highly recommend anything Telltale Games, especially including The Walking Dead: Season 2. So, if Vita or one of those other formats are your favorite, then this is good news for you! I love how adaptable Telltale Games is with their games!

The Watch_Dogs eBOOK //n/DARK

WatchDogs_eBook_Cover

Earlier this week, Ubisoft announced that they would be releasing an interactive ebook to contemplate their upcoming game, Watch_Dogs.

Here’s the Press Release:

SAN FRANCISCO – April 17, 2014 – Today, Ubisoft announced the ebook Watch_Dogs  //n/Dark Clouds, inspired by the highly anticipated video game Watch Dogs. Authored by John Shirley, the ebook storyline picks up where the Watch Dogs video game leaves off allowing fans to further explore the world of Watch Dogs. The ebook is a first for Ubisoft, as it was conceived in-house and will be released exclusively via digital channels.

John Shirley, prolific author of over 30 books and short stories such as “A song called Youth”, is a known figure in the hacker community and is a pioneer of the cyberpunk movement, and therefore is a natural fit to author the Watch Dogs’ ebook. Having unprecedented access to our Montreal studio dev team and writers, he has recreated the atmosphere of Watch Dogs, into his thriller, that combines high-tech crimes with new and known characters.

“Working on Watch Dogs was enormously interesting to me because its world offers the convergence of cyberpunk and the edgy tech reality of our times; it all plays out with action and energy against the inner city backdrop that I thrive in” said John Shirley. “With hack tech in one hand and gun in the other, Aiden Pearce is a believable fusion of hacker and action hero who deliberately slips between the cracks of society to relentlessly pursue his agenda. The novel introduces Mick Wolfe, an ex-military, who get caught in a dangerous game in Chicago’s hyper connected and violent underground. Working with Thomas Geffroyd and Kevin Shortt at Ubisoft to develop the book was a rocking experience – Ubisoft is right out there on the frontier of videogame development. I couldn’t ask for more inspiration”.

Watch_Dogs //n/Dark Clouds will be available in English, French, Italian, German and Spanish at the game’s release on May 27, 2014. It will be available in two digital formats: an upgraded e-book version with interactive elements including videos and image and a classic e-book. For more information, click here www.watchdogs.com/ebook.

Stay connected to Watch Dogs by visiting the official websiteFacebook page and Twitter account.”

And here is a video explaining it a bit more:

This is an interesting idea, but I’d have to play the game first before I could say that I would want to invest my time reading and interacting with this ebook. I’m not sure if this is really the sort of thing that I’d go for anyway, but I’ll keep an open mind for now. Either way, I wanted to pass it on to y’all.

Octodad: Dadliest Catch

octodad logo

Octodad: Dadliest Catch released to PC a while back and now it finally has a release date for the PS4: April 22nd.

Here’s the PS4 release date announcement trailer:

I’ve played the first Octodad game since I last shared any news about the sequel. I have to say that I didn’t play it for long. The controls really bothered me. I’m thinking it might be a better experience on the PS4, but I don’t plan on paying $15 for it. I will review it if I get a review copy or if it’s discounted or free for PS Plus members.

Alien: Isolation

alien isolation logo

For Alien: Isolation this week, I’ve got another dev diary video to share with y’all. This week’s diary is about “Lo-Fi Sci-Fi”.

I am continually more and more excited about Isolation! It’s definitely one of the games that I’m going to HAVE to play this year.

PAX South

Alamo

According to Joystiq, PAX has added a new event to their calendar: PAX South in San Antonio, TX from January 23rd to January 25th. I’ve heard great things about PAX East in recent years and so I’m glad to see that they’ve added a destination in my home state of Texas. I think that Austin might have been a better destination (and closer to me), but San Antonio is still a fun city to visit. I’ll definitely try to go, if I’m still in Texas (I’ve applied for a job out of state), and have no major conflicts next January!

PlayStation 4

ps4-lead-440x270

The PlayStation Blog has news on the latest upcoming big system update for the PS4.

“As we mentioned last month during GDC, we’ll be releasing a major system software update for PS4 that will add some exciting new features that many of you have been asking for. Today, I’m pleased to announce a few of those features from PS4 system software update (v1.70) will be available soon, including features that were incorporated as a result of your great feedback. This will be a significant update, and today we’re excited to bring you a sneak peek of just a few things you can look forward to.

Introducing: SHAREfactory

The 1.70 update will enable SHAREfactory, our new rich video editor app for PS4 that makes it easy for you to customize your gameplay videos:

With SHAREfactory, you can now easily combine your captured video clips for editing, personalize them with special effects using filters, transitions, and themes, as well as share them with your friends and social networks. SHAREfactory also allows you to personalize your videos by adding text, stickers, and a set of included audio tracks, as well as video commentary with picture-in-picture capability with PlayStation Camera. It also allows you to import your original music to add to the custom soundtrack for your video.

Share With the World

Once you’re done with your masterpiece, you can easily share your SHAREfactory videos to Facebook, or export them to an external USB storage device to upload them elsewhere, another new feature coming as part of the 1.70 system software update. Other PS4 SHARE enhancements include the ability to change the recording time of your gameplay to shorter increments, the ability to change who you share your clips with on the SHARE screen, and the removal of default saves for screenshots and video clips. In addition to these SHARE enhancements, the 1.70 update will allow you switch off HDCP, enabling you to capture video directly from your HDMI output so you can record and share longer clips of your gameplay sessions — a feature I know many of you have been waiting for. We are excited to see what the PlayStation Nation does with these new social features, and cannot wait to get them into your hands!

Play as Soon as the Game is Released

Providing you with immediate access to your games is a priority designed into PS4, and something we will always strive to make better. We’ve had a great response from PS4 fans about the Play as You Download feature, the snappy load times when launching and playing games, and the general speed and responsiveness of the UI. The 1.70 update adds features to build on this idea and make it faster to play the games you pre-order with an auto pre-download capability, which allows you to pre-download your select pre-ordered game up to several days prior to release. If you have the auto-download feature enabled, it will automatically pre-download your pre-ordered game so you can play as soon as the game is unlocked on release day.

As I mentioned earlier, some of these features were a direct result of the great feedback we’ve been getting from you, our dedicated gamer community. We enjoy listening to your comments, and encourage you to continue sharing your thoughts with us. And this is just the beginning. We’ve got a lot more coming in PS4 system software update v1.70 and beyond. The PS4 experience will constantly evolve, and new innovative ideas can come from anywhere to ensure the platform continues to deliver the best in gaming and entertainment every time you turn it on.

We’ll have more information to share about new upcoming features for this major system software update as the release approaches, so stay tuned!”

Here’s the trailer for the Share Factory:

I can’t say that these were the updates that I’ve been looking forward to, but I’m sure a lot of you probably are.

What did you all think of my stories for this week? Did I miss any big news that interested you all this week?

Upcoming Reviews in April

Comic Reviews: The Walking Dead #126 and Mass Effect: Foundation #10.

Game Reviews: 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil (probably not), Octodad: Dadliest Catch (maybe), and Batman Arkham Origins: Cold, Cold Heart (maybe)

April Poll

This month’s poll is all about one of my favorite video game series of all time (the other is Mass Effect): The Legend of Zelda. I want to know which of the Zelda games are y’all’s favorites? Multiple selections are allowed. My two favorites are Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask, but I love the others listed as well.

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