Xbox One system update rolling out now, includes media player and more

Xbox One's September update is rolling out a few days early. The system update, which introduces a new media player app for Microsoft's current-generation console, is going out to console owners over the next few days. Microsoft began testing the latest update earlier this month. In addition to the new media player app, which will support formats like MKV, animated GIFs and DNLA by the end of the year, the system update adds new party features, new SmartGlass features, the option to boot directly to TV and more. Here's the full list of changes, from Microsoft. A new Media Player app: Play media files from an attached USB device or a network connected home media server with the new media player app - DNLA support coming soon. Xbox One will support more formats than Xbox 360,...

The horror of Five Nights at Freddy's

  • Dark Souls 2: Crown of the Old Iron King Overview

  • Spacecom: a fast 4X built for multiplayer

  • Pillars of Eternity builds on role-playing classics

  • Tour the 1 KB hard drive built inside Minecraft


Salt and Sanctuary brings a love of 2D Castlevania and Dark Souls to PS4, Vita

The next game from Ska Studios, developer of The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile and Charlie Murder, is coming to PlayStation 4 and Vita in 2015. It's called Salt and Sanctuary and, according to its creator, is inspired by Nintendo DS-era Castlevania games and From Software's Souls series. James and Michelle Silva, the two-person team at Ska Studios, describe Salt and Sanctuary as a "stylistic, brutal action RPG platformer that's teeming with visceral, satisfying combat, deep, diverse character builds and some of the most incredible bosses we've ever made." In an email to Polygon, James Silva said, "Michelle and I wanted to marry our visual and gameplay style and aesthetic from The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile with RPG mechanics and themes inspired by DS-era Castlevanias and Souls games." Ska...
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Dark Souls 2: Crown of the Old Iron King - A spoiler-free guide

Having a hard time with Dark Souls 2's latest piece of DLC? We do not blame you.In an attempt to help guide you through Crown of the Old Iron King without completely ruining the surprises lying in wait, we present the series of videos below, which showcase where to find the bonfires, doors and bosses included. There's no information on the bosses or treasures waiting for you in the new content — just some much-needed directions toward this new chapter's main points of interest. Finding the entrance to Crown of the Old Iron King Finding the Second Bonfire Finding the Third Bonfire Finding the Scorching Iron Scepter Finding the Final Boss Finding the Tower Key and First Optional Boss Finding the Second Optional...

Game developer group condemns 'morally reprehensible' harassment

Following a week of abuse, trolling and doxxing of game industry personnel, the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) has released a statement condemning online harassment."Over the last several weeks, game developers and affiliates have been the subject of harassment and 'doxxing' attacks, including threats and posting of home addresses," offered the statement, from the IGDA's board of directors. "While we support diverse viewpoints and healthy debate on the issues within our industry, we condemn personal attacks such as these which are not only morally reprehensible, but also illegal in many countries. We call on the entire game community to stand together against this abhorrent behavior." The statement follows a series of attacks against developers, execs and game...

What one Twitter bot giveth, another taketh away

Andrew Vestal, one half of the website Gaming Intelligence Agency, created the Twitter bot @YouAreCarrying last month to inject a dose of 1980s nostalgia into the Twitter feeds of gamers everywhere. Simply send the account the word "inventory" or the letter "i" and receive a list of the imaginary items in your imaginary inventory. @owengood the first clue, a pellet of squid repellent, a severed head, a zorkmid bill, a fragment, a damp scroll, a loose mine. — YOU ARE CARRYING: (@YouAreCarrying) July 6, 2014 The bot boasts the entire list of objects available in every Infocom game, among others. Shortly after that account went live, out of the shadows crept @_The_Thief. The thief, a man of superior breeding, lifted a quilt from Charlie_L_Hall. —...

Halo: Reach, Super Time Force and Monaco are September's Games with Gold perks

Microsoft's Games with Gold lineup of free games for Xbox Live Gold subscribers in September is strong: Bungie's Halo: Reach, Capy Games' Super Time Force and Pocketwatch Games' Monaco: What's Yours Is Mine. Xbox One owners get Super Time Force starting Sept. 1 via Games with Gold. Xbox 360 owners get Monaco on Sept. 1 followed by Halo: Reach on Sept. 16. Xbox Live Gold subscribers currently have access to download Crimson Dragon, Strike Suit Zero: Director's Cut and Dishonored at no charge until Aug. 31. You can read Polygon's reviews of Super Time Force and Monaco for details on those upcoming freebies.

Kingdom Hearts brought my family together when we needed it most

When I was five, my mother brought the Gerber baby home from the hospital. At least that's what I thought — Raymond looked like the baby on the Gerber baby food jars when he was tiny.He was born with achondroplasia, a form of Dwarfism that curved his back and made it difficult for him to walk. Doctors told my parents he wouldn't live past the age of 10. I didn't know this at the time. I did know that my mother cried a lot whenever she would play with or feed him. My siblings and I really didn't know what to do with each other. Then, during the super-boring summer of 2002, our mother bought us a copy of Kingdom Hearts. Full house My parents would spend days at a time in Maryland with Ray, traveling back and forth from his team of specialist doctors for the next four years. When Ray...

Nidhogg coming to PS4 and joining iOS hit Ascension on Vita

Sony today announced two new titles for the PlayStation Vita; Nidhogg and Ascension: Chronicles of the Godslayer. Nidhogg will release simultaneously on the PlayStation 4 and feature competitive multiplayer between both Sony platforms. Nidhogg is a two-player dueling game that reached cult status even before its release in early 2014. It focuses on fencing to the death in a tug-of-war where the winner receives a glorious death at the hands of a giant pink dragon. Russ Frushtick reviewed the game for Polygon and commented that "Nidhogg never feels simple, and it never feels cheap. Kills must be earned through thoughtful strategy rather than button mashing, and it's immensely satisfying when a plan comes together." The title spawned several retro-flavored dueling games, including T...

Amazon and Twitch are the competitors YouTube needs

It's been a hell of a summer for Twitch.Reports that the game streaming giant was being bought by Google first surfaced back in May. By the end of last month, many were considering it a done deal. Then, out of nowhere, rumors hit this week that the Google deal had fallen through and Amazon, of all places, would actually be acquiring Twitch. Those initial reports were quickly confirmed via an official announcement. I'm sure it's been as tumultuous a roller coaster ride inside Twitch as it appears from the outside. But the good news is this: With the Amazon buyout, all of us got the best possible outcome. [image via @Julia_CaSsian] The Google problem Before I get into why I think Amazon is going to make for a great partner with Twitch, let me explain why I was so cynical...
Top Games
  • Watch Dogs
    • Platforms: Win, 360, PS3, Wii U, PS4, Xbox One
    • Publisher: Ubisoft
    • Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
    • Release Date: 2014-05-27
  • Destiny
    • Platforms: PS3, 360, PS4, Xbox One
    • Publisher: Activision
    • Developer: Bungie
    • Release Date: 2014-09-09
  • Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft
    • Platforms: Mac, Win, iOS, Android
    • Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
    • Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
    • Release Date: 2014-03-11
  • Dark Souls 2
    • Platforms: PS3, 360, Win
    • Publisher: Namco Bandai
    • Developer: From Software
    • Release Date: 2014-03-11
All Games

How one indie got Sony and Microsoft to support cross-platform content

Cross-platform play: It's the feature gamers always ask about, with Xbox fans wishing they could play with PlayStation people and vice versa. That doesn't appear to be something either Microsoft or Sony is interested in, but the companies' new attitudes on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One allowed one indie studio to deliver the next best thing — cross-platform sharing of users' creations.User-generated content, like custom maps for a shooter, can often be uploaded to the internet and shared with other players — but only if they're on the same console as you. That has been standard for the past decade, with rare exceptions such as Unreal Tournament 3, where players on PlayStation 3 could use maps, mods and skins that others had created on Windows PC. But games in which you can create...

Harmonix is making a musical shoot 'em up called A City Sleeps

Rock Band and Dance Central creator Harmonix is making a musical shooter — no, not that other musical shooter. The developer's latest game, A City Sleeps, looks like a shoot 'em up developed in the style of Cave or Treasure, but with the studio's trademark musical hook. A City Sleeps is a twin-stick shooter for PC that gives players control of Poe, a "dream exorcist" who can "enter the minds of sleeping hosts to rid their dreams of demons." Using a sword named Heartstrings and a gang of ghost familiars as sidekicks, Poe battles colorful enemies through dreamscapes while dodging bullet hell-style swarms of projectiles. Her ghost familiars can possess inanimate objects in the world, which will then assist her in battle. The game features an original soundtrack, Harmonix says, that...

Creators of Metro 2033 say PS4 is more powerful, tease open-world game

4A Games chief technical officer Oles Shishkovstov says the developer behind the Metro series is working on an open-world title. In a lengthy interview with Eurogamer, he also goes into great detail about programming for both of the current gen game consoles and discusses how ongoing improvements to their toolsets will contribute to their next game. 4A Games and publisher Deep Silver recently released updated versions of both Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light. Each is being sold separately and bundled together in a package called Metro Redux. The updates represent a total remaster, a kind of director's cut, and have taken the Ukrainian studio more than a year to complete. Metro Redux is available on PC, as well as the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. While both console versions of Metro...

Titanfall's newest game mode ditches the Titans and AI bots

The next update for Respawn Entertainment's Titanfall will introduce a new game mode that's surprisingly basic: no Titans, no AI infantry, just 16 human pilots going at each other in team-based deathmatch. Titanfall's sixth major game update will add Pilot Skirmish to the list of featured game modes. The mode is an 8-versus-8 battle between pilots and, due to the difference in player count, Respawn says, won't be among the modes playable in Titanfall's Variety Pack playlist. The update also makes Marked for Death — the mode introduced earlier this year in which one player from each team is targeted for assassination — a permanent game mode. Respawn says the "enduring popularity of the mode" convinced them to bring it on full-time and add a Marked for Death playlist and custom Marked...

Ferguson media coverage inspires game about modern journalism

Since Michael Brown was shot dead by Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson on Aug, 9, sparking riots and protests, some media coverage of the event has been slanted according to prejudice or the political leanings of attending outlets. Criticism has been leveled at sections of the media for focusing on petty crimes seemingly committed by Brown, an African American teenager who was unarmed when he was fatally shot in the street. The controversy over how media portrays minorities in the United States is soon to become the focus of a video game. In an interview with Kill Screen, developer Nicky Case talked about his unnamed game, which is about how stories are framed. Case showed how players of the game watch a situation in which police officers are engaged with members of the...

Assassin's Creed Unity delayed to Nov. 11

Assassin's Creed Unity, the current-generation entry in Ubisoft's open-world action series, has been delayed from Oct. 28 to Nov. 11, the publisher announced today. Ubisoft said the extra two weeks will allow the development team to add a bit more polish to the game. "This being a fully next-gen game, it requires a lot of work, a lot of production, and a lot of learning," said Unity senior producer Vincent Pontbriand. "It's always hard to be precise and to quantify exactly how much work is involved. So as we get close to the finish we often realize we're near the target but we're not quite there yet." Ubisoft says that the dev team will be spending the extra time to improve minor aspects of the game, and that a day one patch is in the works that will bring other improvements. The...

I had to become someone else to discover who I loved

I told a story about my experiences with Fallout: New Vegas and how the game helped me explore and come to terms with my bisexuality at PAX Prime. The experience was greatly facilitated through the participatory nature of video games. The active decision-making process in games narrative influences our self-perception. This dynamic not only puts the power of video games above other forms of art and entertainment, it also opens up new realms in terms of personal evolution while prompting a new question: is it possible that video games are the most persuasive medium in entertainment? Exploring yourself by becoming someone else Figuring out sexual preference is an easy task for many people. As human beings we take social cues from our surroundings and as we feel the comfort and...
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