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Puppeteer, PayDay 2 and more join PS Plus Europe free game collection April 30

European PlayStation Plus subscribers will receive five free games on April 30 that range across PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, according to a post today on the European PlayStation Blog. PS Plus subscribers with a PlayStation 4 can download Zoink!'s action platformer Stick it to the Man. PlayStation 3 users with a PS Plus membership can download Puppeteer, the puppet-infused platformer from Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Studio and Overkill's heist-based shooter PayDay 2. Subscribers with a PS Vita will receive free download of Muramasa Rebirth, the PS Vita port of Vanillaware's Wii 2D role-playing game Muramasa: The Demon Blade Soul Sacrifice, and golf game Everybody's Golf. Mercenary Kings, Pro Evolution Soccer 2014,Bioshock Infinite, Hotline Miami and...
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See Skylanders Trap Team's new Trap Masters, villains and portal in action

Skylanders Trap Team features a new gameplay mechanic that lets players trap the action game's villains, thanks to an all-new portal accessory, and recruit them to fight alongside an all-new batch of Skylanders heroes. In Skylanders Trap Team's first trailer, how the new interplay between video game, action figure and accessories function is explained in a most fantastical fashion. The Toys for Bob and Beenox-developed Skylanders sequel is due Oct. 5 on a wide variety of console and handheld platforms. Skylanders Trap Team will support all of the existing Skylanders toys, and will add more than 50 playable heroes. The game will ship with a new base accessory, the Traptanium Portal, which is included in a starter pack that will sell for $74.99 and comes with two traps, a Trap Master and...
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Skylanders Trap Team coming Oct. 5 with a new twist and a new portal

Three years and three iterations into the short and absurdly successful lifespan of Skylanders, Activision and developers Beenox and Toys For Bob are hoping to reinvent the toys-meet-video game franchise with yet another twist. Where the original Skylanders game allowed players to place an action figure onto a toy portal and inject the character into a video game, the follow-ups brought over-sized action figures and figures that can be taken apart and mix-and-matched. In October, Skylanders Trap Team will bring the ability not just inject toys into a video game, but to take a video game character and drag him kicking and screaming into the real world, sort of. "We're going to leap forward once again and redefine how kids play," said Eric Hirshberg, president and CEO of Activision...
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Watch Dogs multiplayer video explores hacking and stalking other players

A video walkthrough of Ubisoft's upcoming action-adventure, open-world game Watch Dogs demonstrates how players can face off against others through hacks and more in multiplayer. The video is narrated by animation director Colin Graham, who explains that Watch Dogs' multiplayer takes place in the same world as its single-player options. Players will be able to connect with others through online hacking, a mobile companion app or through competitive decryption combat. As players explore the game's world, they'll have the opportunity to accept contracts and enter the games of other players. When players themselves are being hacked, they'll be notified that they're currently "being invaded." It's worth noting that when other players enter a world, targets will look like NPCs, rather than...
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Project Cars trailer touts photorealism and reveals a November release

A trailer released today for Project Cars, the upcoming racing game from Slightly Mad Studios, shows some photorealistic in-game footage. Press play above to see the game, which, according to the final seconds of the YouTube video, is headed for a November 2014 release. Project Cars is in development for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U and Windows PC. Its developers announced late last month that it will support Sony's Project Morpheus virtual reality headset. You can watch our hands-on impressions of the headset below and read our interview with Shuhei Yoshida, head of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios, to learn more about how Sony hopes to court indies with the technology. <img src='/images/manage/video-placeholder.png' width=640 height=360...
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Playing with privilege: the invisible benefits of gaming while male

Over the course of the past two years I’ve had the opportunity to serve as producer on the Tropes vs Women in Video Games web series. During that time, I have been taken aback by the intense and often abusive reaction to the project. This backlash, along with a number of other recent high-profile harassment incidents targeting women, has highlighted sexism in the gaming community and brought the issue to wider public and media attention. One particularly astounding theme I’ve noticed running through online discussions surrounding these incidents has been a consistent denial that there is any real problem with the way women are treated in gaming. Despite the abundance of evidence, I’ve seen many of my fellow male gamers, in comment thread after comment thread, dismiss the issue as...
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Is Watch Dogs doing anything original?

Watch Dogs begins with a tutorial mission that heavily accentuates the game's aspirations as a thriller about modern surveillance. Set in a sports stadium, this sequence forces the player to make use of cameras and security servers in order to demonstrate power over the world. It is an overlay of semi-transparent lines, criss-crossing the physical realm, bending and warping reality; a conspiracy-theorist's fantasy user interface. The in-game goons who would harm me can be rendered impotent by the flick of a switch. Reaching that switch is a matter of following simple sequential puzzles and holding down a button on the joypad. It is a secondary weapon, a smart bomb that the designers have placed in the world in order to add an extra dimension to the combat and to give the game a gleam...
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Destiny website revamp offers more on enemies, classes, locations

An updated website for Bungie's upcoming sci-fi shooter Destiny teases more information about its enemies, three character classes and locations. Destiny is set on a future Earth after it experienced a golden age introduced with the arrival of the Traveler who "breathed new life into our system." Its arrival brought rain to Mars and made the atmosphere of Venus habitable. Human colonies on planets within the solar system are now in ruins and colonized by interstellar visitors who are searching the ruined golden age settlements. Players are placed in the role of one of three Guardian types or character classes. New videos of the three character classes, detailed in Polygon's E3 in-depth interview with its developers, are available on the website. The character classes include the...
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Call of Duty 2014 first look teased by Sledgehammer Games

Developer Sledgehammer Games teased a first look at this year's Call of Duty at last month's Game Developers Conference, offering a split-second peek at the 2014 entry in Activision's popular shooter franchise. Thanks to the GDC Vault, which hosts video recordings of the conference's talks, those not in attendance at Sledgehammer's panel can get a taste of what this year's Call of Duty game will look like. "We can't talk at all about Call of Duty for this year," Sledgehammer's Michael Condrey said at the start of the talk he delivered with fellow studio co-founder Glen Schofield. "[Activision] said you can't show anything from Call of Duty this year, and you certainly can't show in-game rendered characters from this year's game." Condrey then briefly showed an image from the game...
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The Walking Dead for PS4, Xbox One listed at GameStop

The Walking Dead, Telltale Games' episodic adventure game series based on Robert Kirkman's post-apocalyptic comic book, may be headed to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One June 17, according to product listings on GameStop's website. The retailer's website lists $29.99 Game of the Year editions for PS4 and Xbox One. Telltale's The Walking Dead Game of the Year Edition was released last November for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Windows PC and included all five of Season One's episodes plus the 400 Days downloadable content that bridges the gap between the first and second seasons. The game is also available on Mac, Ouya and PlayStation Vita. We've reached out to Telltale for confirmation and will update this article with more information as it becomes available.
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Royce Gracie joins EA Sports UFC roster as unlockable fighter

Brazilian mixed martial artist Royce Gracie will be featured in EA Sports' upcoming mixed martial arts title, EA Sports UFC, the company announced today. Players will be able to unlock Gracie by beating the game on Pro difficulty or higher, or by pre-ordering the game for PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. Participating retailers are available on EA Sports' site. Gracie, now retired, is the winner of 11 consecutive UFC submission victories and holds the record for the longest MMA match, clocking in at 90 minutes. The fighter was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in 2003. Gracie joins the roster along with recently announced contenders Glover Teixeira, Marku Munoz and Roy Nelson, as well as martial arts legend and action film star Bruce Lee. For more on why Lee will appear in EA Sports UFC,...
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Star Wars Pinball: Heroes Within trailer shows Masters of the Force in action

Zen Studios' is preparing to launch the final round of tables for Star Wars Pinball later this month, sharing a trailer today showing the Masters of the Force table in action. Masters of the Force — a table featuring Force-wielding heavy hitters like Yoda, Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine — is part of the Heroes Within DLC pack, which launches on April 29 for PlayStation 3, Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Windows PC via Steam and Xbox 360. The pack includes four tables for $9.99 on console and PC and individual tables will be available for $1.99 through the iTunes App Store, Google Play and the Amazon App Store. "The past two years of Star Wars Pinball development have been tremendously rewarding," reads a press statement from Zen Studios. "Masters of the Force feels...
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8.0

Octodad review update: PS4 and more

If you haven't played Octodad: Dadliest Catch since it was released on PC, you'd be forgiven for initially assuming the PS4 version was just a straight port. It looks the same, it plays the same; it was, at least for the first half hour or so, the exact experience I remember from my first playthrough. That began to change once I reached the supermarket and found that the mango soda I needed to retrieve for my family had been perched not atop a free-standing pyramid of crates but a sort of half-pyramid flush with one of the supermarket walls. With the added support to crawl up, the once highly-irritating climb had become about 100 percent less infuriating It's a minor change, but representative of the several tweaks that have been made to make the paternal cephalopod's outing so much...
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How Dragon Age: Inquisition's trailer opens up new story

Story has always been a central pillar in the enduring popularity of BioWare's Dragon Age series. A new trailer out today seeks to set the stage for Dragon Age: Inquisition, due to be released Oct. 7, 2014. Dragon Age: Inquisition begins with the events at a peace conference between the warring mages and templars. An explosion wreaks havoc on the tentative plans, while causing the extinction of many members of the world's ruling classes. The Inquisitor emerges from the chaos, ostensibly being blasted from metaphysical realm the Fade. The game's central character is given the power to fill the power vacuum, leading the Inquisition against invading demons, pouring through The Rift. "There's an interesting undertone here of people in the world believing that you have been sent as a...
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Destiny developer Bungie enters its 'final approach' before Sept. 9 release

Destiny, Halo developer Bungie's upcoming massively multiplayer first-person shooter, is on track for its Sept. 9 release, and those creating it have the game's "final approach" in their sights. According to a post by community manager Eric "Urk" Osborne, that means that the studio knows what must be done to complete the game during the next several months. Destiny is running in a pre-alpha state, with two milestones to follow before its release. "Pre-Alpha itself is just a beginning," Osborne wrote. "It leads us into Alpha proper, and you into Beta, but it's already keeping us up late into the night. Though we're bleary-eyed and exhausted with the day-to-day challenge of keeping Destiny ON TRACK, the tiny sampling offered by our Pre-Alpha is already hugely motivating. For many of us,...
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The Last of Us lead artist leaves for The Unfinished Swan dev Giant Sparrow

Nate Wells left Naughty Dog for an art director position at The Unfinished Swan developer Giant Sparrow, the developer announced in a tweet late yesterday. Wells joined Naughty Dog in August 2012 following his departure from Irrational Games, where he spent 13 years and most recently served as art director on BioShock Infinite. Wells took up as lead artist on PlayStation 3 exclusive The Last of Us and, according to his tweet, left for Santa Monica-based indie developer Giant Sparrow in early April — shortly before the announcement of The Last of Us Remastered for PlayStation 4. Wells' Twitter profile notes the Giant Sparrow affiliation, but his LinkedIn remains unchanged, stating that he is "currently between careers" at the time of writing. Hmmm....seem to be some threads here....
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Sniper Elite 3 will give British satirist the chance to shoot himself

British satirist and broadcaster Charlie Brooker has been so voluble in his praise of the Sniper Elite series that the game's developer will include him in a special Sniper Elite 3 level. Rebellion announced the inclusion in a news release last week, including that picture of Brooker, 43, in a full-body Lycra suit used for motion capture. "Rebellion is keeping quiet on Charlie Brooker's exact role in Sniper Elite 3 for now," the news release said, "but the game's creators have promised it will appeal to Charlie's dark sense of humor, fueling speculation he won't just be the good guy." Earlier, Brooker had toured Rebellion's headquarters and gotten a hands-on session with Sniper Elite 3 when creative director Jason Kingsley offered to put Brooker in the game as " a novel ‘thank you' to...
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SOE president says H1Z1 makers are 'fans and contributors' of DayZ

In an AMA on Reddit yesterday, John Smedley, the president of Sony Online Entertainment, was asked about similarities that SOE's upcoming MMO H1Z1 shares with DayZ, the tremendously successful ArmA 2 mod from 2012 set in a post-apocalyptic open world. Smedley acknowledged that he, and "most of the people on our team" are 'fans and contributors' of DayZ. "Not going to give some politically correct dodgy b.s. answer," he wrote. "H1Z1 is a survival in a Zombie Apocalypse game. So is DayZ. They have made a brilliant game (first I might add). So sure. We're another Zombie Apocalypse game. Call it what it is. But our goal is to make ours fun, accessible, hard core and super, super deep. "This is our take on the Zombie Apocalypse with a lot of friends and hopefully some great enemies both...
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MLB The Show's neatest trick was not as easy as it looks

Tuesday was Jackie Robinson Day in Major League Baseball; on it, every player wears Robinson's No. 42, commemorating the anniversary of his first game for the Dodgers, which began baseball's desegregation in 1947. If you're playing MLB 14 The Show's career mode and the calendar rolls around to April 15, you'll see this happen there, too.In a video game, the layperson would assume that only requires changing a value in a database. But pulling it off is not as simple as it sounds. These things rarely are. "It's something that does seem trivial on the surface," Aaron Luke, a designer on the game, told me this week. "We have to put in code that takes a snapshot of the player, showing him as No. 42, and then restore him back to his old number when the game is finished. And if you don't do...
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Cel Damage HD out on Tuesday for all PlayStation platforms

Cel Damage HD will launch on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita on Tuesday April 22, according to Sony. The Finish Line Games' cel-shaded vehicle combat game was previously slated for a general spring release. Priced at $9.99, it is a cross-buy title, meaning that purchasers pay once for access to all three versions. Sony is offering a 10 percent discount for PlayStation Plus members during the game's first week on sale. Cel Damage HD puts players in a cartoon racing world featuring 13 levels, with six drivers, 10 cars and more than 30 weapon power ups. The PS4 version also supports four-player split screen multiplayer. Pseudo Interactive originally released Cel Damage in 2001 for the GameCube, PlayStation 2 and the original Xbox. "As longtime developers, we've always...
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