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Alternate 1980s RPG Majestic Nights is one big conspiracy


Some choose to believe the Apollo 11 moon landing of 1969 was a hoax, or that the United States government is keeping extraterrestrials in a hidden building somewhere in the Nevada desert. Epiphany Games is playing off these types of conspiracies with its freshly-announced episodic game, Majestic Nights, which will debut in September. In the alternate 1980s game, these sorts of conspiracies aren't just theories, but are "truths." Players guide an intelligence operative known as Cardholder and a private investigator named Cal in the isometric RPG, uncovering clues to the criminal cover-ups and world-breaking facts about events like alien abductions.

The first season of Majestic Nights includes six episodes and kicks off with a "Chapter Zero" prologue for free in September, which dives into the aforementioned moon landing. Majestic Nights' subsequent chapters will come at a cost; the first is expected to arrive in October, with the season's conclusive sixth episode currently slated for April 2015. The game is in development for PC, Mac, iOS and Android, and while Epiphany didn't put a price to each chapter, season passes will be available for players to guarantee access to the whole shebang.
[Image: Epiphany Games]

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Live Look: Hearthstone Curse of Naxxramas


If you've been interested in Blizzard's collectible card game Hearthstone, but the whole idea of competitive multiplayer is a turn-off, it's time to take another look at the title with the Curse of Naxxramas single-player expansion. Launched late yesterday, we did a quick little walkthrough of the new content this morning on our Twitch channel. Skip ahead to the seven minute mark for the start of gameplay.

We got a little confused about the pricing of the expansion on the stream, so we've placed those details after the break for easy reference. The first wing of Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas is available free-to-play now on PC and iPad.

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Crysis 3, Ryse producer Mike Read departs Crytek

Crytek's exodus of company talent continues, as Ryse: Son of Rome and Crysis 3 producer Mike Read has left the studio, The Escapist reports.

The Escapist notes that Read's recently updated LinkedIn profile no longer lists Crytek as his current employer. Read's Twitter bio additionally states that he is a "former producer" at Crytek.

Read's departure follows up on the recent resignation of 11-year Crytek veteran Tiago Sousa, who now serves as Lead Rendering Programmer at id Software. Subsidiary Crytek UK also saw a number of departures last month, losing more than 30 employees and Homefront: The Revolution director Hasit Zala amid rumors of late staff payments.

[Image: Crytek]

Batman: Arkham Knight Red Hood DLC exclusive to GameStop

An exclusive batch of story mode DLC will be available for customers who pre-order Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham Knight at GameStop, the retailer announced today.

GameStop's "Red Hood Story Pack" DLC introduces Batman series vigilante Red Hood as a playable character, and features a number of exclusive single-player missions. GameStop pre-order buyers will also receive the Harley Quinn Story Pack, which bundles an additional playable character and four challenge maps.

Today's DLC reveal follows up on GameStop's recent announcement that it would fund unique DLC for featured games. The Arkham series has a history of experimenting with retail- and platform-exclusive content; the PlayStation 3 version of Arkham Origins hosted exclusive Knightfall maps, and Arkham City's Catwoman DLC served as a retail-focused incentive to curb used game sales.

Batman: Arkham Knight will hit the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC platforms in 2015.

[Image: GameStop]

Guardians of the Galaxy converge in Disney Infinity 2.0

The Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel's oddball ensemble leaping from comics to film on August 1, are visiting earth in the form of tiny figures. Disney Interactive is preparing a cosmic Play Set for the upcoming launch of Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes, rooted in the likenesses of Groot (the tree), Gamora (the assassin), Drax (the Destroyer), Rocket Raccoon (you know) and Star-Lord. (Star-Lord, man. Legendary outlaw?)

The five space criminals on the cusp of heroism are playable in their own story, joined by a handful of crossover characters from other sets. Iron Man swings by to help out in the battle against Ronan the Accuser, while Nova jets in from the Spider-Man Play Set. Oh, and switch "swings" with "jets" there. Now it's wordplay.

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Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris launching in December

You can co-operate like an Egyptian when Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris hits Xbox One, PS4 and PC on December 9. Crystal Dynamics Executive Producer Scott Amos revealed the date to IGN, saying regards the wait, "We look at this game and we put it together in a way that we just love it. It's a fan favorite, it's something that we want to do right."

As we saw at E3 the follow-up to Guardian of Light plays as before, combining the intrepid explorer's world with top-down, twin-stick shooting and co-operative gameplay. The most obvious difference is the switch from two to four-player co-op, with Lara now joined by rival raider Carter and imprisoned Egyptian gods Horus and Isis.

One welcome change from the original is that, according to Crystal Dynamics, both online and local co-op will be available at launch.
[Image: Square Enix]

Humble Square Enix Bundle features Hitman, Deus Ex, Anachronox


The Humble Square Enix Bundle launched today, offering multiple games from the Deus Ex and Hitman franchises for a user-determined price with proceeds benefiting GamesAid and Make-A-Wish.

All bundle buyers receive Steam-redeemable Windows versions of Hitman, Hitman 2, Daikatana, Thief Gold, Mini Ninjas, and Anachronox. Toss in a few more bucks to beat the average purchase price (currently $6.10), and you'll also get Deus Ex: Invisible War, Deus Ex: The Fall, Hitman Absolution, Battlestations: Midway, and the Nosgoth Veteran Pack, along with additional bonus games to be announced at a later date.

A purchase of $14.99 or more will also unlock copies of Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days, Just Cause 2, and Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. The Humble Square Enix Bundle will remain available through August 5.

[Video: Humble Bundle]

The Room opens up to Steam next week


The Room will launch on PC via Steam on July 28, Fireproof Games announced this week. The PC edition of the game is a "fully-enhanced HD version," which the developer said has been "many months in the making and has involved recreating almost every asset in the game from the ground up."

Fireproof's puzzler launched on iOS in September 2012, arriving on Android in March 2013 before achieving two million total downloads in May of last year. The game's sequel, aptly dubbed The Room 2, carried on the lock-breaking mystery in December. As for a third game in the series, Fireproof Games only noted that "all we can say is stay tuned." Head past the break for a video comparing the visuals of The Room's mobile and PC versions.
[Image: Fireproof Games]

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Dragon Age: Inquisition delayed to November

Dragon Age: Inquisition will launch on November 18 in North America, a delay from the previous launch date of October 7, Executive Producer Mark Darrah announced today. In Europe, Inquisition will now launch on November 21.

"We appreciate the enormous support we've received from all of you to get to this point, and while this extra few weeks may not seem like a lot, I know the game you'll play will be all the better for it," Darrah says.

He continues, "I'm privileged to be a part of a team that has been working very hard to surpass every measure they've set for themselves. That has meant completing huge amounts of game content, fixing bugs both big and small, and improving the overall experience. This last bit of time is about polishing the experience we want you to see. Ensuring that our open spaces are as engaging as possible. Strengthening the emotional impact of the Hero's choices. And ensuring the experience you get is the best it can be in the platform you choose to play on."

Dragon Age: Inquisition was part of what we called "The Video Game Industry's $300 Day," a lineup of five major games slated to launch on October 7. This is the first game on that list to change release dates, and a few of our contributors totally called it.

EA also announced today the delay of Battlefield Hardline from October 21, 2014, to some time in 2015.

Walk like an Altair at the SDCC Assassin's Creed Experience



When San Diego Comic Con opens on Thursday, would-be Ezios, Altairs and Avelines will finally get their chance to seamlessly run over castle walls, shuffle along delicately arranged plinths, and hop over pedestals like a bonafide assassin in the Assassin's Creed Experience.

Ubisoft constructed this new, real-life teachable obstacle course for the convention, conceived in part by Michael "Frosti" Zernow, the publisher's new Chief Parkour Officer. Zernow and other pro freerunners will not only give demonstrations, they'll also give lessons on how to move like a regular Auditore as well. Before you go diving off any churches into hay carts, maybe try this out. Also remember you'll probably end up pulling a Homer.
[Images: Ubisoft]

Joystiq Streams: The Crew beta giveaway road trip [UPDATE: Relive the stream!]




[UPDATE: We're live at Joystiq.com/Twitch... but we're not playing The Crew! The beta is currently down, but we're still giving away a ton of codes for when the beta is back up.]

The end of July is dangerous for the Joystiq crew. As the heat continues to climb and the days stretch on and on, our lust for summer adventure reaches its zenith. We want to fill the car with mixtapes and take to the open road, wearing nothing but swimsuits, sunglasses, and bravery! How could we possibly abandon our audience, though? We can't rightly stream video games for you if we're tearing up the asphalt from here to Kalamazoo! The Crew, Ubisoft's open-nation racing game in beta testing this week, must slake our thirst for a road trip. Plus, you can join us!

Starting at 4PM EST on Joystiq.com/Twitch, Joystiq's newly formed racing team will take to The Crew beta to put it through its paces. Xav de Matos, Richard Mitchell, and Anthony John Agnello will be tearing up the road. Meanwhile, Alexander Sliwinski will be doling out a few dozen beta codes in the chat. How do you get the codes? Just show up and hang out.

Joystiq Streams broadcasts every Tuesday and Thursday at 4PM EST, and many other times when it strikes our fancy. Never miss a stream by following us on Twitch!
[Images: Ubisoft]

Capcom: Dead Rising 3 PC to include free Untold Stories DLC

Unlike its console predecessor, when open-world zombie apocalypse sim Dead Rising 3 reaches the PC on September 5, it will include all four Untold Stories of Los Perdidos DLC episodes at no additional cost.

The news about the game, now known as Dead Rising 3 Apocalypse Edition, comes via a message from the official Dead Rising Twitter account. A later tweet notes that those who have pre-ordered Dead Rising 3 on the PC will be automatically upgraded to the Apocalypse Edition.

It's unknown if Dead Rising 3 Apocalypse Edition will include any DLC beyond the Untold Stories of Los Perdidos episodes, such as the miscellaneous costume DLC awarded to players for buying Dead Rising 3 at launch, or the more recent, multiplayer-focused Super Ultra Dead Rising 3 Arcade Remix Hyper Edition EX Plus Alpha. We've attempted to reach Capcom for more information, but have yet to hear back.

Dungeon Defenders Eternity includes gear for sequel

The original Dungeon Defenders now comes in an all-in-one package called Dungeon Defenders Eternity. The $15 bundle includes "previously released material, new content, redesigned gameplay balance and cross-platform play." Owners of the original game on PC, Mac and Linux can upgrade for $6.

There's also a package with "less content" on Android Tegra Devices for $9.99. It'll arrive on other Android devices, iPhones and iPad later this year. There's also a browser version at Playverse.com.

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The Walking Dead Season 2, Episode 4 review: Life and Death

This review covers the latest episode in an ongoing season, and may contain minor spoilers.
Death is better than zombification, but life is the best option of all. Even in a hellhole of a world; even with rotting corpses hunting you down every path, salivating for your flesh; even when you have to kill your friends every day – life is the better option.

That's what "Amid the Ruins" teaches us. More than any previous episode of The Walking Dead, it throws the importance of life in our faces – the fragility of breathing, the futility of fighting, the need to do it anyway – and it makes us wish for life harder than we ever have. Not necessarily our own lives, either. Clementine, for her part, is capable and in charge in this episode. She's rarely in direct danger herself (at least not in any way she hasn't already conquered 50 times before), but she bears witness to the potential deaths of many others, multiple times over. She saves some people. She kills some people. And she survives.

She lives.

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New Mighty No. 9 footage is ready to rock, man

At this point, the best thing that could happen to Keiji Inafune's Mighty No. 9 is if Capcom straight-up sued. Free marketing, great debate, battle lines would be drawn. We don't know what the grounds for the lawsuit would be, but the latest footage of the game comes so close to sharing similarities with Mega Man, it's almost difficult to tell the two apart.

Go ahead and test it yourself. Take the Mighty No. 9 footage found after the break and play it to someone who has general video game knowledge. Take out all the context and just ask: What game is this? Actually, please go ahead and do that and let us know what the other person says.

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