Adult Swim Games bringing stealth platformer Rain World to PS Vita

Stealth platformer Rain World is coming to PlayStation Vita as part of a partnership between developers Joar Jakobsson and James Primate and Adult Swim Games, according to the latest backer update for the game's Kickstarter campaign. Rain World was funded via Kickstarter this past February. The campaign exceeded its $25,000 goal, pulling in $63,255 from over 3,000 backers. According to the backer update, in addition to the previously-announced Linux, Mac and Windows PC versions, Rain World will now launch for "PSN, PS Vita and well beyond." The title also recently passed approval through Steam Greenlight. Rain World stars a slugcat — a slug-cat hybrid — in a retro-themed world searching for food and running from more hostile creatures. Players must be able to sneak through...
From The Verge

Google Maps overhaul leaks ahead of I/O conference

It looks like Google is set to unveil a new version of Google Maps for the desktop at I/O this week. Droid-Life discovered a description on the revised service’s landing page that reveals what’s in store: a “tailored map for every search,” a new UI reminiscent of Google’s recent mobile apps, WebGL-powered overhead views borrowed from Google Earth, Flight Search integration, and the ability to compare multiple modes of transportation on the map itself. Google also hints at Google-Now-like interactions such as your map suggesting restaurants you might enjoy on the way to your destination. While the site has since been pulled, it looks like Google will have a lot to show off during its Maps session at this week’s developer conference.

Dead Nation launches for PlayStation Vita April 15

Top-down shoot-em-up Dead Nation will launch for PlayStation Vita April 15, XDEV Studio Europe associate producer Rogan Ogden announced via the Playstation Blog. In Dead Nation, players assume the role of one of two zombie apocalypse survivors searching for a cure. The PlayStation Vita edition was announced at E3 2013 and will be available for $7.99. In addition to online and ad-hoc co-op, it also includes global leaderboards. Dead Nation, originally developed by Resogun creator Housemarque, launched for PlayStation 3 in 2010. An updated version of the game was released for PlayStation 4 last month and includes the game's original campaign mode, as well as The Road to Devastation expansion pack. "Like the PS4 version of the game, the PS Vita version has been developed by our friends...

Sony Japan's Soul Sacrifice Delta, Freedom Wars, Oreshika coming West

Sony's Japan Studio is bringing three of its PlayStation Vita games to North America: fantasy action game Soul Sacrifice Delta and role-playing games Freedom Wars and Oreshika: Tainted Bloodlines. According to a post on the PlayStation Blog, Soul Sacrifice Delta will launch on May 13, with more details on Freedom Wars and Oreshika slated to drop in the coming months. Soul Sacrifice Delta (trailer above) includes the original 2013 title with a host of improvements as well as an expansion's worth of new content, including a new character with a new mission, improved AI, more character customization options and additional enemies, items and quests. Graphics have also been optimized and some game areas now have structural changes, including new dynamic weather effects. Dystopian...

BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma hits PS Vita June 24

2D fighting game BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma will launch on the PlayStation Vita as a retail and digital release on June 24, Aksys Games announced. The handheld version features all playable characters from last month's PlayStation 3 release, along with an additional story, an enhanced Abyss Mode and a recap of BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger and BlazBlue: Continuum Shift.  BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma adds five new playable characters to the franchise's cast, while established characters have been redesigned, rebalanced and given updated moves. It features several modes, such as Arcade, Unlimited Mars, Survival and more. The fighting title also introduces rebalancing updates, updated mechanics and revamped networking capabilities. Originally released to Japanese arcades in November 2012, B...

Mercenary Kings dev bringing Curses 'N Chaos, Ninja Senki DX to Vita and PC

Tribute Games, developer of Mercenary Kings and Wizorb, will release a pair of games for PlayStation Vita and PC later this year: arcade action game Curses 'N Chaos and action platformer Ninja Senki DX. Curses 'N Chaos is a wave-based action game in which players battle a series of ghosts, goblins and other creatures as they swarm in from the left and right sides of the screen. Playing as either a lightly armored knight or a martial artist, players have little at their disposal in how they can dispatch monsters. You're punching or kicking most of what you see, or double-jumping to get out of the way. Both characters are cursed with an affliction that attracts the game's monsters to them. Their mission is to break that curse. Players will get access to stronger one-time-use weapons,...
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Hands-on with Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number is familiar. The sequel to Dennaton Games' top-down, retro-styled, graphically and narratively brutal action game felt and looked just like its 2012 predecessor. This is a familiar, dire universe. I exited a car, grabbed some weapons from its trunk and entered a building filled with people looking for an excuse to murder me. To be fair, it's a Hotline Miami game, so I had an excuse to murder them, too. I first played Hotline Miami on PC. Truth? I was terrible. I have no reason to believe that it was the game. I've been a controller guy almost all of my life, and I just don't have the mouse and keyboard skills that it requires. It wasn't until I played the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita versions that I was able to live up to the game's demands. I...

Naughty Dog teaming up with Dark Horse Comics to release art book

Game development studio Naughty Dog is teaming up with Dark Horse Comics to publish an art book titled The Art of Naughty Dog, which will be available later this year. According to Naughty Dog's community strategist Eric Monacelli, The Art of Naughty Dog will "span the history of Naughty Dog and feature hand-picked, never-before-released artwork depicting our past, present and future." The book is being released to commemorate the studio's 30th year in business. It will also feature fan art from throughout the years. More is expected to be announced in the coming months. Naughty Dog was founded in 1984 by Andrew Gavin and Jason Rubin. It was originally named Jam Software until its name change in 1989. The studio is best known for its work on titles like Crash Bandicoot, Jak and...

Lego The Hobbit review: safe fairyland

Lego the Hobbit is the best way to engage with the fictional world of The Hobbit short of reading the original book. Traveller's Tales' Lego games have always added a humorous spin to whatever property they were paired with. The team has found a perfect match in The Hobbit — the lighter, friendlier prequel to JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings series. Lego the Hobbit takes inspiration from the slightly overblown recent films and runs with it, creating a plastic universe that's warm, funny and inviting. The storytelling is succinct, the gameplay is familiar and comfortable, and the world itself is a pleasure to explore, lending to a sense of adventure grander than the tiny plastic bricks would lead you to expect. Lego the Hobbit doesn't stray far from the formula set...
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Star Wars Pinball: Heroes Within coming April 29, Droid table detailed

The final pack of tables for Star Wars Pinball, Heroes Within, will be available April 29, community manager Bobby Loertscher announced via the PlayStation Blog. The last pack brings the game's total number of tables to 10. Heroes Within includes four tables themed around Star Wars: Episode 4: A New Hope, Droids, Masters of the Force and Han Solo. Zen Studios released a first look at its R2-D2 and C-3PO-themed table, Droids. "R2-D2 and C-3PO face a myriad of pitfalls including conveyor belts, welding torches, pressing machinery, robotic arms and lava pits," Loertscher wrote. "Your finest pinball skills are required to help our friends escape the Sandcrawler! Beware of Nebit, as he tries to thwart the escape and keep our Droids captive!" For a look at the table, watch the video below. ...

Watch Keiji Inafune design Mighty No. 9's robot enemies

The latest Kickstarter backer update for Comcept's Mighty No. 9 details the state of the game as well as what players can expect from the enemies and environments robot protagonist Beck will encounter on his journey. The grunt enemy robots, shown as sketches in previous updates, are undergoing additional polish and nearing their final forms, according to the update. The video above shows Inafune giving feedback on the humanoid-type enemy robot, which he noted should still be less human-like even though it is built like one. These upright standing robots, instead of holding shields and guns, have their shields integrated into their torso; when they need to use them, their torso rotates around to bring the shield from its back to the front of its body. The update also includes artwork...

Ethan: Meteor Hunter launches for PlayStation Vita April 15

Ethan: Meteor Hunter, Seaven Studio's 2.5D puzzle-platformer, will launch for PlayStation Vita April 15, co-founder Olivier Penot announced via the PlayStation Blog. The game will be available or $9.99 for those purchasing it for the first time; anyone who owns the game already on PlayStation 3 will receive the Vita version for free. PlayStation Plus members will be able to grab the game for a 20 percent discount during its launch week. Described as "Super Meat Boy meets Braid," Ethan: Meteor Hunter stars a rat who gains super powers after being struck by a meteor. Using his new powers, Ethan can freeze time and move objects. The Vita's touch screen will allow players to tap and touch to move objects around, while its back touch screen enables rotation of objects. Ethan: Meteor...
The Besties Podcast

The Besties: The Best Games of March 2014

I hope you enjoyed March.The month full of big game releases may be the last of its kind for the foreseeable future. Looking at the calendar, we won't see four weeks so full of hyped AAA and indie games until fall. That's why we chose to withhold Dark Souls 2 from this month's Besties. We can discuss its release on PC next month. April, after all, looks slim by comparison. Anyway, let's live in the now! This month we have four good games, a bag full of reader favorites and some big news involving a certain Lawnmower Man knockoff. 8:30 - Titanfall 25:00 - Mercenary Kings 37:00 - Halftime! 48:00 - Infamous: Second Son 1:14:00 - News of the month 1:24:00 - Luftrausers 1:34:40 - Reader emails Theme song by Ian Dorsch Get the show: Download MP3 Subscribe to the podcast...

Cult County brings first-person desert horror to life in latest gameplay video

Cult County developer Renegade Kid launched the first gameplay video for the upcoming horror game that is currently seeking funding through Kickstarter. The campaign launched earlier this month and is seeking $580,000 to bring the release to Linux, Mac and Windows PC via Steam, as well as PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Wii U and Xbox One. Xbox 360 and Nintendo 3DS ports are a possibility with stretch goals. Cult County is self-described as "The Walking Dead meets Silent Hill 2 from a first-person perspective" and will focus on atmosphere, loneliness and your innermost fears. The game is set in a "small, dusty West Texas town," where protagonist Gavin Mellick is searching for his sister. Unable to find her, Gavin begins unraveling clues about a strange, "cultish" group...

Stick It to The Man launching for PlayStation 4, Wii U

Swedish developer Zoink will release its indie platformer, Stick It to The Man, for PlayStation 4, according to an announcement on Facebook. Stick It to The Man previously launched for PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita and Mac and Windows PC via Steam. The game, written by Adventure Time comic book writer Ryan North, follows Ray, a man who wakes up one day to find a magical arm attached to his forehead. Using his new appendage, Ray can read the minds of his fellows. It will be displayed in 1080p and use the DualShock 4 controller speakers to "tap into characters' thoughts in the game, further separating the mind-reading world from Ray's world." Previous PlayStation versions of the game were cross-buy, meaning those who purchased it on one system received it on the other. Stick It to...

Atlus picks up RPG Citizens of Earth after failed Kickstarter

Citizens of Earth, the retro-inspired role-playing game from indie studio Eden Industries, will be published by Atlus and is set for release later this year on Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Windows PC and Wii U, the publisher announced today. Vancouver, Canada-based Eden Industries attempted to fund development of Citizens of Earth with a CA$100,000 Kickstarter campaign last fall, but the funding drive fell short with a final total of CA$36,875. Upon the closure of the campaign, Eden vowed to continue developing the game. Atlus will release Citizens of Earth in North America and Europe as a downloadable title. Citizens of Earth casts the player as Vice President of the World. The day after the vice president takes office, the people of planet Earth go crazy. It's up...

New PlayStation Vita model coming May 6 in Borderlands 2 bundle

The Borderlands 2 PlayStation Vita bundle featuring the new slimmer model of Sony's handheld will launch on May 6, with the standalone Vita version of Borderlands 2 hitting May 13, according to a post on the PlayStation Blog. The Borderlands 2 Limited Edition PlayStation Vita Bundle includes the slimmer Wi-Fi Vita with 1 GB of internal storage, an 8 GB memory card and the game for $199.99. Borderlands 2 for Vita will be available to download separately from the PlayStation Store or for purchase at retailers when it launches one week later. Borderlands 2 on Vita will also include six DLC packs: the two add-on campaigns Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate's Booty and Mr. Torgue's Campaign of Carnage, the Psycho and Mechromancer character classes, the Ultimate Vault Hunter's Upgrade Pack...

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number's latest trailer doesn't skimp on the action

Devolver Digital shared a new trailer for Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number this morning featuring new gameplay footage and a peek at the characters we'll be encountering as we blast our way through the title. According to creator Dennis Wedin, the game is the "grand finale" for the series and has been in development in some form since production on the original 2012 Hotline Miami. The game is slated to launch in Q3 2014 for PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita and Windows PC. Hotline Miami 2 will be playable at PAX East this weekend for attendees in the Indie Megatbooth. Polygon will be in attendance covering the show.

'Ultimate' balance update rolls out for PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, whose downloadable content updates stopped for good last summer, nonetheless has been given an "ultimate balance update" that rolled out today. In addition to more than 100 balance adjustments across all characters, the update also unlocks the third costumes for those who own the DLC characters Zeus (from the God of War series) and Isaac (of Dead Space). For those who don't have them yet, the price on the Graveyard Pack that includes them, and MediEvil's Graveyard stage, has been dropped to $1.99 until April 22. The full list of adjustments and changes may be seen here. Santa Monica Studio also announced that it has partnered with Level-Up Series to stage a PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale Spring Tournament at Super Arcade, in Walnut, Calif. It...
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Save the children, save yourself: The one lifetime of Road Not Taken

"Unless you ask for help, we’re not going to offer any. We’re curious to see how you’ll do," Dave Edery, the co-founder of Spry Fox tells me as I sit down to try Road Not Taken, the team’s latest game, coming to the PlayStation 4, Vita, and Steam this summer. It’s a grid-based puzzle title with rogue-like elements, but the music and art style are bright and welcoming, almost whimsical. I die quickly. "Just so you know, 90 percent of people die in the tutorial," I’m told. "Including PhDs and fellow game designers. The game is meant to be very hard." The gulf between the game’s cheery aesthetics and its tough-as-nails difficulty can be hard to cross, but once I started to understand the movement and throwing actions I began to make my way through the game, saving the...
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