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Joystiq Streams: Casting a fiery eye on Shadow of Mordor [UPDATE: We're live!]



JOY-STIQ! JOY-STIQ! JOY-STIQ! STREEEEAAAAAMMMMMMMMS! One day, when we're all War Chiefs in Sauron's army of Uruks, that's what they'll chant. From high and low, they'll call our names out, afraid of our endless wrath and prowess in battle!

Then again, it seems like being an Uruk is hard work. You're outside literally all the time, giant pig-wolf things are always trying to eat you, and there is almost always a bearded dude carrying half a sword skulking in the shadows waiting to stab you. Forget it. Joystiq Streams may not be ready for war chiefdom, but we're certainly ready to play Shadow of Mordor for your viewing pleasure.

Starting at 4:00PM EST on Joystiq.com/Twitch, Richard Mitchell (@TheRichardM) will be playing through Mordor's early missions. Alexander Sliwinski (@Sliwinski) and Anthony John Agnello (@ajohnagnello) will be around to talk about the game's subtleties and hang in the chat. Show up early for the pre-show tomfoolery.

Joystiq Streams airs every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:00PM on Joystiq.com/Twitch, but if you want to catch all our streams make sure to follow us on Twitch.

[Images: WBIE]

Dreamfall Adventures debut chapter arrives in late October

Despite earlier reports, developer Red Thread Games has announced that its episodic adventure game Dreamfall Chapters will premiere on October 21.

"Book One of the Kickstarter-funded game will be distributed to project backers, and will be available to download on Steam for PC and Mac, and on Linux on Tuesday, October 21," reads the developer's announcement. No specific date is offered for the PlayStation 4 version of Dreamfall Chapters, but the developer claims the console game will be available in "early 2015."

According to Red Thread, Book One will cover the game's prologue and first two chapters. The game's remaining four Books will complete the tale, though there's no word on when those additional episodes might arrive.
[Image: Red Thread Games]

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PSA: Dark Souls 2's 'Lost Crowns' DLC trilogy now complete

Following a recent, unexpected delay, Dark Souls 2 fans can now download the final entry in the dark fantasy game's DLC trilogy, dubbed Crown of the Ivory King.

Like its predecessors, Crown of the Sunken King and Crown of the Old Iron King, Crown of the Ivory King is designed to test those Dark Souls 2 players who have bested the game's core challenges and are now ready for something even more difficult. "[O]nly the most hardcore, determined, and unrelenting fans will survive the onslaught of new enemies, traps, and bosses that have been devised to stop players from completing their quests in Crown of the Ivory King," reads the DLC's official description.

Like the other Dark Souls 2 DLC releases, Crown of the Ivory King can be purchased for $10 from the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Marketplace or Steam. Those who would prefer to buy all three DLC packs at once and are playing Dark Souls 2 on a PC can grab the game's Season Pass from Steam for $25.

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The Legend of Korra difficulty level just for Platinum fans



The Legend of Korra has a special difficulty level tuned for fans of Platinum Games – Bayonetta, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance – producer Atsushi Kurooka says in the latest behind-the-scenes video. Activision approached Platinum to do The Legend of Korra, and the show's depth and silky smooth fight scenes convinced Kurooka it was "worth the challenge," as he puts it. And the final boss fight? It "has Platinum Games written all over it."

The video shows off a few cool fight scenes between the talking heads, too. The Legend of Korra is due out on October 21 on PS3, PS4 and PC, and on October 22 on Xbox 360 and Xbox One.

Korean League of Legends shoutcasters are too much fun



Riot's shoutcasters – the hosts, analysts and interviewers on the ground during League of Legends tournaments – are professional, friendly and informative across the board, but there's something special about the Korean casters. Something energetic, frenzied and, most importantly, so much fun. YouTube user BaegMon collected a few stand-out moments from Korean shoutcasters during groups A and B in the 2014 League of Legends Worlds tournament earlier in September.

The 2014 League of Legends World Championship is heading into its Knockout Stage, slated to start on October 3. The Finals take place on October 19. See who's in, who's out, and the tournament schedule at lolesports.
[Image: Riot]

Retro demake 'Hammered' recreates brutal Oldboy fight

Korean tragedy epic Oldboy features a scene of protagonist Oh Dae-su assaulting a mob of thugs in a claustrophobic hallway, armed only with a hammer. It's one of cinema's most vicious fights, and that spirit of wanton violence lives on in Hammered, a pixelated homage to director Park Chan-wook.

According to Kill Screen, Hammered was created as part of the Leamington Underground Cinema Festival by Oldboy fan "DavidDraws." Despite being described as a demake, Hammered merely borrows a classic aesthetic while utilizing entirely modern technology. Instead of firing up an NES emulator, those wanting to play Hammered need only visit its website where they'll find a convenient Unity Engine embed and a guide to the game's simple control scheme.

Let's be clear, though: Hammered pales in comparison to its source material. It's just not possible to capture the stark brutality of the original scene in faux 8-bit graphics, and there's no reason to bother when YouTube offers instant access to Park Chan-wook's far superior interpretation. On the other hand, at least DavidDraws didn't spend $30 million on his unnecessary remake.
[Image: DavidDraws]

Realistic racer Assetto Corsa takes a lap on Rainbow Road

Thanks to Italian developer Kunos Simulazioni, racing sim Assetto Corsa features some of the world's most famous race tracks. Now, thanks to a dedicated fan, the game also offers access to Mario Kart staple Rainbow Road.

Redditor "N64AC" adapted the technicolor circuit for the racing sim using the Nintendo 64 incarnation of Rainbow Road as source material. This mashup of disparate gameplay styles is not without problems - N64AC warns that some cars can break their suspension by attempting Rainbow Road's sizable jump - but if you can avoid wrecking your car the track looks like a solid alternative for those moments when yet another lap around Silverstone sounds a bit dull.

To witness the Rainbow Road course in action, click the video found below the break. If you like what you see, N64AC has included full instructions on how to install the addition to your copy of Assetto Corsa which can be found on Reddit.
[Image: Kunos Simulazioni]

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Shadow of Mordor season pass trailer tastes a little Sauron

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment may have revealed its $25 season pass for Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor last month, but it's now offering a closer look at the add-ons that pass holders are guaranteed access to. The DLC includes an exclusive Guardians of the Flaming Eye mission and two story missions, Lord of the Hunt and The Bright Lord.

The latter quest has players controlling Celebrimbor, "the great Elven smith of the Second Age," eventually encountering the Tolkien universe's primary antagonist, Sauron. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor will launch tomorrow for PS4, Xbox One and PC. The Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game were delayed to November 18 earlier this month. It received good marks critically, including our five-star review that praised the Mordor's Nemesis system. Head past the break to see the game's season pass trailer.

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PvZ: Garden Warfare's Legends of the Lawn update drops tomorrow


A sizable update for PopCap's team-based shooter Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare launches on September 30 across all available platforms, publisher Electronic Arts announced today.

The new "Legends of the Lawn" update introduces over 200 new customization items and seven character variants, including Golf Star, Centurion, Paleontologist, Chomp Thing, Alien Flower, Jade Cactus or Sanitation Expert. Also featured is the new "Taco Bandits" gameplay mode, a Capture the Flag variant that challenges the Zombies team to steal away delicious tacos from the defending Plants. Mmm, tacos.

Legends of the Lawn will be available as a free download starting tomorrow for the Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PS3, and PC platforms.

[Video: Electronic Arts]

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Mashup platformer Team Indie hits Steam on October 9


CommanderVideo from the Bit.Trip series, Awesomenauts' Clunk, and other indie luminaries will partner up in next month's Steam launch of the crossover platformer Team Indie from developer Brightside Games.

Team Indie's levels revolve around the unique powers and abilities of its superstar cast. Players can rewind time and embark on multiple simultaneous runs through each level, using their previously recorded input to solve puzzles as they race toward each stage's exit. Featured cast members include Dustforce's Dustgirl, Braid's Tim, Super Crate Box's protagonist, and other familiar faces from the indie scene.

Team Indie premieres on October 9 for Windows and Mac platforms.

[Image: Brightside Games]

Rejoice! Visceral says Battlefield Hardline 'will work' at launch

Battlefield Hardline will operate as expected at launch, according to Ian Milham, creative director at Visceral Games. "What you're basically asking is, 'Is your game going to work?' And the answer is yes, it's gonna work," Milham told Game Revolution.

The statement follows a rough launch for the last game game in the series, DICE's Battlefield 4, which suffered months of connectivity issues after its October 2013 arrival. That led to multiple law firms alleging that publisher EA issued "materially false and misleading statements" regarding Battlefield 4's playability. When a CEO like EA's Andrew Wilson publicly deems a game's launch as "unacceptable," questions about the next game's stability will certainly come up.

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FIFA 15 kicks Destiny from top spot in UK

It's the post-FIFA portion of the year on the Chart-Track UK sales charts. Historically this means we'll likely have EA Sports' FIFA XX at the top until Activision's Call of Duty shows up, but there's always the possibility for Just Dance or a Zumba game to mess with that.

Anyway, FIFA 15 is out now and it accounted for 80 percent of all software sales and 87 percent of all revenue for the week. Chart-Track estimates if one were to align all the week-one FIFA sales for every platform (it was staggered last year), FIFA 15 unit sales would be flat year-over-year, with a 6 percent revenue increase. The Xbox One and PS4 versions account for 54 percent of unit sales.

The only new release last week to break the Top 40 is Fantasy Life, the Level-5 (Prof. Layton, Dark Cloud) RPG, which debuted in the eight spot. The UK top ten can be found after the break.

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Windlands mixes Shadow of the Colossus with Oculus Rift

If Spider-Man started swinging and leaping through a magical land inspired by Shadow of the Colossus, it might look something like Windlands from Ilja Kivikangas and Simo Sainio.

In this first-person action-adventure developed initially as part of the VR Jam 2013, players take on the role of an automaton built to find and destroy the source powering gigantic golems. To aid in this endeavor, players will be able to leap large distances, jump off walls and use a grappling hook to swing from the environment.

While not one of the jam's finalists, Kivikangas wrote to Joystiq that he and Sainio received enough positive feedback that they decided to turn their project into a full-fledged game. To do that however, they're asking $14,000 on Indiegogo. At the time of this writing, they have raised just more than $9,000.

Thankfully, while videos and screenshots are nice - and you should feel free to check out a trailer after the break - you don't have to take Kivikangas and Sainio at their word regarding gameplay, as you can download demos for both the DK1 and DK2 versions of the Oculus Rift and decide for yourself if you'd like to help fund the game's development.

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Jason Rohrer's new game is a devilish gamble with real money

Jason Rohrer's games are often somewhat ... unconventional. Passage was a game about growing old, and Sleep is Death required players to constantly be engaged with the story they were creating in order to keep the game alive. Now, Rohrer is developing Cordial Minuet, a gambling game with an occult twist. Another twist: you bet, and play for, real money.

Here's how it works: two players connect to each other via the internet and, after making their bets, are shown a square with a series of numbered tiles. The numbers shown are different each game, but they always add up to 111. There are six rows and six columns. 666.

What one player sees shows up rotated 90 degrees to the other player, so that one player's columns become the other's rows and vice versa. Players each choose two columns, one for themselves and one for their opponent. The idea is that you want the column you choose for yourself and the column your opponent chooses for you to intersect at a high number. On the other side of the scale, you want the column you pick for your opponent and the column they pick for themselves to intersect at a low number. This repeats for several rounds before a winner is declared.

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SpeedRunners reaches $1 million in sales, 162 years playtime

SpeedRunners, a game about superheroes racing one another to the scene of a crime, has racked up 162 years of total playtime and $1 million worth of sales, according to an infographic from No Time To Explain studio and SpeedRunners publisher, tinyBuild. You can check out the full list of facts after the break.

Developed by DoubleDutch Games, SpeedRunners was released on Steam Early Access in August of last year. It gained a surge in popularity thanks in part to exposure from YouTube personalities such as Swedish sensation PewDiePie, and more statistics shared by tinyBuild attest to this; according to tinyBuild, 1 in 1,000 people in Sweden own a copy of the game.

The final version of SpeedRunners is due for release on PC by the end of 2014 "... probably," according to tinyBuild. A free version will be available as well, with a console version sprinting to Xbox One in 2015.

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