November’s PlayStation Plus Games Already Announced

Sony seems to have accidentally revealed next month’s lineup of PlayStation Plus games way ahead of schedule.

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On the first Tuesday of next month, Bulletstorm Full Clip Edition and Yakuza Kiwami can both be yours if you’re a PlayStation Plus subscriber.

Normally, Sony doesn’t announce the next month’s lineup until the very end of the previous month. This month’s titles, Friday the 13th: The Game and Laser League, were revealed on September 26, just one week before they went live.

As of writing this article, the image has been taken down and replaced with this month’s pair of games. The leak seems to be legitimate. The image was uploaded to the official PlayStation website, and a SEGA PR representative has confirmed that Yakuza Kiwami is a free title next month on PlayStation 4.

Bulletstorm Full Clip Edition is a remaster of Gearbox’s 2011 first person shooter, and it still holds up well today. Yakuza Kiwami is a fantastic entry point to the critically acclaimed series, overhauling the 2005 PS2 original in the engine of 2017’s Yakuza 0, bringing the gameplay up to modern standards.

Both games over wildly different experiences, but both are fantastic games, and it looks like next month will be a good one for PlayStation Plus subscribers.

New Nintendo Switch Model Reportedly Coming Next Year

According to The Wall Street Journal, Nintendo is planning to release a new verison of it’s console-handheld hybrid next year.

Sources told the publication that active discussions are underway about new hardware and software functionality and the costs to implement them in a potential redesign. Sources also indicated the new Switch model could arrive in the second half of 2019, and maybe as early as summer.

While this isn’t a Switch 2 or anything like that, it could still be a substantial upgrade over the existing model. Some features on the table include an upgraded screen closer to those found in “more recent smartphone LCDs” and an increased battery life. Of course, price is still a limiting factor, so don’t expect a high-end OLED display or a significant boost in processing power.

Regardless, it will be interesting to see what exactly Nintendo has in store for the first revision of its smash hit console.

 

 

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey Coming to Chrome (Yes, Chrome)

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey launches this Friday on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and now Google Chrome.

You read that right. Today Google unveiled Project Stream, a service designed to stream AAA video games directly through your Chrome browser. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey will be featured in a “technical test” for the service, allowing a very small select group of testers to stream the game when it launches this Friday. Google outlined the basic functionality of the project in a blog post.

“We’ve partnered with one of the most innovative and successful video game publishers, Ubisoft, to stream their soon-to-be released Assassin’s Creed OdysseyŽ to your Chrome browser on a laptop or desktop. Starting on October 5, a limited number of participants will get to play the latest in this best-selling franchise at no charge for the duration of the Project Stream test.”

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Google released footage of the game running on the service alongside the reveal. It looks to be running smoothly at 1080p/60fps, but we won’t know about input lag, latency, and other factors that usually plague streaming platforms until this Friday.

“The idea of streaming such graphically-rich content that requires near-instant interaction between the game controller and the graphics on the screen poses a number of challenges.  When streaming TV or movies, consumers are comfortable with a few seconds of buffering at the start, but streaming high-quality games requires latency measured in milliseconds, with no graphic degradation.”

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Both Ubisoft and Google have been looking into the game streaming market for some time now. We heard rumors of Google entering the gaming space earlier this year, and this seems to be their big idea. Ubisoft’s CEO Yves Guillemot has also stated that he believes streaming will play an integral role in the next gaming generation. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey seems to be their first major test for this idea, with the game getting a cloud version in Japan and being available on Project Stream in the states.

The game will be completely free to play if you’re selected for the test, and you’ll have access until sometime in mid-January.

To participate in the test, users must be at least 17 years old, have a controller or keyboard and mouse to control the game, and a have a capable internet connection with a speed of at least 25 megabits per second, as well as both a Google account and a Ubisoft account. Signups are available here.

Input lag and latency are the two critical factors in streaming video games, and they hinder so many other streaming services. Will Google be able to finally deliver a reliable streaming experience comparable to running the game natively on local hardware? We won’t have to wait long to find out.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey launches on October 5 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and now Google Chrome for a handful of people.

 

Minecraft: Dungeons Announced For PC

A dungeon crawling game set in the world of Minecraft is coming to PC in 2019, Mojang announced today during Minecon Earth 2018.

The game is described as an “action-adventure game inspired by classic dungeon crawlers.” It’ll support up to four players cooperatively and feature new weapons, items, mobs, and environments as players embark on a journey to defeat the Arch-Illager.

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Dungeons appears to be the first of a series of Minecraft games. After the trailer debuted, Lydia Winters, the Chief Brand Officer for Mojang, said, “this is the beginning of our expansion of the Minecraft universe to new game genres.” Minecraft is no stranger to spin-offs, with studios like Telltale Games having already put their own unique spin on the blocky universe.

Minecraft: Dungeons is slated to launch in 2019 on PC. No word was given on other platforms. Mojang also detailed their new Village and Pillage update (which adds Pandas!) today, and you can read all about that here.

Will you be playing Minecraft: Dungeons? Let us know down below and stay tuned to Circle Square Games for all things Minecraft.

 

Pandas Are Coming to Minecraft

Minecon Earth 2018 is currently underway, and with it comes a lot of block-related news.

Announced today, the Village and Pillage update will introduce a slew of new villagers, including the Librarian, Butcher, Cleric, Cartographer, Leatherworker, Fletcher, Shepherd, Farmer, Fisher, Armorer, Toolsmith, and Weaponsmith. These villagers will have unique designs depending on the biome they’re from. Alongside these new villagers come Pillagers, new hostile mobs that will attack villagers and players with their dangerous beasts.

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Ahead of this big update, Mojang is adding two new animals to the game: pandas and stray cats. Bamboo forests will also be added to the game, along with the ability to harvest bamboo and create scaffolding with it.

“We recorded real pandas in China to help create these,” said Jen Bergensten, lead developer at Mojang.

The Village and Pillage update is scheduled to launch sometime next year, and the pandas and cats are due “very soon”. You can get a sneak peek of the creatures in the video above.

Mojang also announced a new dungeon crawling game set in the Minecraft universe called Minecraft: Dungeons during today’s stream. You can read all about that here.