Starwhal: Just the Tip has been incessantly poking at us for about a week now, popping up on our radar again and again, and we're finally giving in. This game is weird in the coolest way: It's a "retro, epic narwhal battle in space," as Canadian developer Breakfall describes it. If ever there were a game for the internet, this is it.
Starwhal: Just the Tip is looking for CAD $20,000 on Kickstarter and has so far raised CAD $6,850. The game is already out in the wild and there's a multiplayer demo available to download on the Kickstarter page, but Breakfall wants to make it bigger and better. It'll be available on PC, Mac and Linux, and it's pre-approved to hit Steam. Starwhal is already on its way to PS4 and Wii U, and Breakfall is looking into Xbox One and Ouya launches.
Check out the space-based narwhal jousting right here.
Still, the 3DS gets two 3D-enhanced Sega classics in Sonic the Hedgehog and Altered Beast, and there are a few other bits and bobs, too. There's also a week-long 30 percent sale on Donkey Kong games, including Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong Jr. on both 3DS and Wii U, Donkey Kong 3 on Wii U, and Game & Watch: Donkey Kong Jr. on 3DS.
As ever, you'll find the full list of new releases snoozing past the break.
British industry site MCV put the PS4's opening week sales at 250,000, according to its retail sources. MCV also pinned the Xbox One's UK numbers at 150,000, but again that figure is unconfirmed. In any case, the good news is both consoles are enjoying successful launches both in the UK and across the globe; Sony announced 1 million PS4 sales within 24 hours of the console's debut in North America, a figure Microsoft also hit when it launched the Xbox One across 13 markets worldwide.
As for this week's software charts, there's some predictable shuffling with the console launches. Call of Duty: Ghosts drifted back to the top, after FIFA 14 stole ahead last week with the Xbox One Day One bundles. The rest of the top ten is made up by games available across Xbox One and PS4, with the exception of Grand Theft Auto 5 in seventh, and Batman: Arkham Origins in tenth.
The charts don't read so well for the Wii U, though. The system's standout holiday game, Super Mario 3D World, debuted in 14th place, just behind PS4 launch game Knack in 13th.
The Legend of Lobodestroyo Vs. La Liga De Los Villanos may take place in a world full of anthropomorphic animals like bandito chihuahuas, pirate parrots and wolf luchadores, but it's the real world, circa 1998 that developer Lefthanded Games wants to take you to - or at least, if not literally the place and time, they want to take you to the feeling you had that year when Banjo-Kazooie was released for the N64. Lobodestroyo is a 3D platformer inspired by such games, and is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter.
Players will take on the role of Mutt, a runt of the wolf pack that follows Lobodestroyo, protector and guardian of Costa Lucha. When Mutt awakens to find Lobo and the rest of his pack missing and La Liga de Los Villanos escaped, he takes up the pack's magical belt and begins a quest to avenge his brothers and dropkick the 10 villains of Los Villanos into submission.
The campaign for Lobodestroyo has a little more than a week left, and at the time of writing, is sitting at about $12,000. The team's initial goal is $35,000, which will allow the game to release on PC, Mac, Linux, Ouya and Wii U. Lefthanded Games is participating in Ouya's Free The Games Fund, which means that Ouya will match the donated amount of money in exchange for a period of exclusivity on the system. At $39,000, the game will be ported to the PS4, and at $42,000, the game will come to nest on the Xbox One.
You can pre-order Shovel Knight through the Yacht Club Games website, which will net you a DRM-free copy as well as a Steam key when it's ready for release. Destructoid also notes that when the game releases, it won't feature some of the Kickstarter campaign's stretch goals like local multiplayer or gender swap mode; those will be released as free updates as the game shovels along. We can dig it.
Paradise Lost: First Contact has breached the hull of Kickstarter's funding carrier and made off with $144,960, more than double its initially requested amount of $70,000. The funding campaign for the adventure game, which follows an alien lifeform's escape from a lab after being harvested from an asteroid, was concluded by developer Asthree Works today at 4:41 p.m. EST.
Of the proposed stretch goals, three were met - the final version will now include achievements, additional language translations beyond the base English and Spanish scripts, and a chapter called "Lost Memories" that will explore the events preceding the alien's capture.
Paradise Lost has also been greenlit for release on Steam, which an update to the game's Kickstarter page reminds us will result in free Steam keys for backers. If you'd rather not use Steam, Paradise Lost is planned for release on December 2014 as a DRM-free game for PC, Mac and Linux. The stretch goal for a simultaneous launch of the Wii U version was not met, so the release of that version will presumably follow the launch of the others. The Ouya version will also launch sometime after the game's initial release.
Oh, those wealthy aristocrats. When will they learn not to attend a mysterious dinner party being held at a strange mansion? Hopefully not anytime soon, because running that mansion and having those dinner guests murder one another is what will keep you in business in Mansion Lord, a game by Golgom Games currently seeking $28,000 on Kickstarter.
Mansion Lord aims to combine several game genres, including business sims, murder mysteries and RPGs. As the owner of a mansion, your job will be to attract guests. You do this by building rooms, upgrading equipment, purchasing better furniture and even investing in scientific research. Once the guests arrive, a murder most foul will occur, and it's up to the detectives in the house to find out whodunnit. Once a culprit has been named, it's time to collect their bounty, RPG-style: that means turn-based battles with special attacks like Spicoli the Mighty's Grand Beam.
So yeah. It's kind of like Tiny Tower meets Final Fantasy meets Clue. We can only hope for mulitple, alternate endings to the murder mystery. The fundraising campaign for Mansion Lord currently sits at just shy of $11.5k, with 18 days left to go. Should it manage to pay off its mortgage, the game will be available on PC, Mac and Linux in 2014. The PS Vita, Wii U and iPads are also potential homes for the game, should it meet its stretch goals.
One year ago, Nintendo kicked off a new generation with the release of the Wii U. Now that Sony and Microsoft have joined it with new hardware, it's time for us to start planning retirement parties for the previous generation of consoles. We've already looked back at the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, but now it's time for the Joystiq staff to recount some of its favorite experiences had on the Nintendo Wii.
Of course, these are just a few of our favorites. Share your favorites in the comments below – that is, if you're not too busy ruling the world as Mario and Friends in their latest adventure.
The other new Disney Interactive-created toy boxes introduced this week are Big Thunder, inspired by the Big Thunder Mountain attraction at Disneyland, as well as Sky Gauntlet 2 and The Sky Trials. Disney Infinity recently received new characters, including Wreck-It Ralph and Tangled's Rapunzel.
If we had you at "Mario games at 30 percent off," let's fill you in on the details. Both the 3DS and Wii U versions of Super Mario Bros. 1 and 2 feature, while Super Mario Land 2 and Mario & Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move are also discounted on the 3DS eShop, and Super Mario World and the original Mario Bros. get price dips on the Wii U eShop. We'd say there's no better time to revisit SMB2 then after playing Super Mario 3D World - gotta love that floaty Peach.
If you're done with discounts and just want the new stuff. we've got that, too - including the first batch of the long-time-coming Sega 3D Classics, and episodes 1-10 of Pokemon: BW Rival Destinies. Head past the break for the full rundown of newly-released games.
Update: Game Director Bendik Stang sent us an email clarifying that Jorgen Klubien's current contribution to Festival of Magic is more as a mentor to Snowcastle Games' art team and that he would only get directly involved should the game get funded. The visual look of Festival of Magic is largely determined by Art Director Frits Olsen and Concept Artist Fredrik Tyskerud. We've updated the language of our original post below to reflect this change.
Festival of Magic combines turn-based combat with farming mechanics tossed, all wrapped up in a familiar JRPG-inspired bow. Developer Snowcastle Games is currently seeking $250,000 to finish it up on Kickstarter.
The story, which was written by comic scribe Magnus Aspli, focuses on a village, its sorceress governor and a warlock who has stolen her life force. As young Amon, players must track down the warlock's army and revitalize the withering sorceress in the process. Art Director Frits Olsen and Concept Artist Fredrik Tyskerud will handle the visual look of the game, though should Festival of Magic get funded, Snowcastle Games hopes to tap Nightmare Before Christmas and Lion King artist Jorgen Klubien for his talents.
The game world, Umbra, is one where magic and technology flourished side-by-side. Plumpet Island, the home base for Amon, serves as a hub and farming retreat – there players will grow magical plants that are used for battle. Combat is handled through a pairing mechanic where warrior characters are teamed up with protector characters.
We caught our first glimpse of Festival of Magic during a Wii U indie games montage, but the game is also coming to PC, Mac and Linux. It's already made it through the Steam Greenlight gauntlet and the developer is keen on bringing the game to Xbox One and PS4 – granted it gets funded in the next 24 days.
It's dangerous to shop alone, so take this – our regularly updated mega-post on the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals:
Remember that these summaries don't include every last detail of every retailer's deals. We recommend judicious clicking and further scrutiny of your preferred outlets based on personal preference, weather conditions and geographical proximity. You'll find sales for four of the major retailers below, with plenty of other deals after the break.
Be frugal, be safe and remember to watch out for aunt Brandine. She stops for no one.
- Best Buy: New games and accessories for $35 or less, monster Xbox 360 bundle for $190
- GameStop: Game discounts, Battlefield 4 (current-gen) for $25, limited edition Zelda 3DS
- Target: Bonus gift cards, $190 4GB Xbox 360 Kinect bundle, $25 Splinter Cell: Blacklist
- Walmart: $100 2DS, $40 Skylanders and Call of Duty: Ghosts, $35 AC4: Black Flag and GTA 5
According to lead multiplayer designer Tim Browne, however, this sort of online combat just wouldn't work in Ubisoft's latest action-adventure.
"The reason Alliance can't come back is that it uses 3 teams of 2 players," Browne said during a recent Twitter Q&A session. "None of the game systems support 3 teams any longer." Not only does this spell doom for the Alliance mode, it also negates any other multiplayer modes that might have relied on more than two teams of combatants. Browne offers no details on the technical hurdles preventing Alliance and modes like it from working properly, but his answer does hit that special level of disappointing candor that usually indicates honesty in this industry.
It is hypothetically possible that Ubisoft's development team could rework some of those basic features Browne mentions to enable Alliance mode and others that rely on multiple teams of players, but based on how blunt Browne's denial of this possibility was, you probably shouldn't hold your breath.
Three key changes have been employed in this update. Most crucially, the communities found in Miiverse can now be sorted according to a number of different criteria, such as "Virtual Console" or "Wii U Software." This is even more helpful than you'd expect as the update also increases the number of communities a player can view at once to a level that would seem unwieldy were it not for the new filters.
Nintendo has also instituted changes to your Miiverse profile page and to the communities themselves. Now, instead of seeing the total number of Yeahs you've offered other players' posts, you'll only find a number indicating how many Yeahs a post has received. Viewing posts in communities has also changed, as now Miiverse will first display posts from those who have actually played the community's game of choice, instead of displaying newest posts first, regardless of who they came from.
Miiverse is slated to hit the 3DS in December. There's no solid date on when that might happen, but a new 3DS social network delivered just prior to Christmas might help bolster Nintendo's holiday revenues.
Released on a regular basis since the game's launch late last year, NASCAR's "Inside Line Highlights" recreate a wide range of past racing scenarios, and are unlockable using in-game currency. Inside Line hosts a grand total of 28 DLC releases, all of which are bundled in the downloadable "Inside Line Pack," available for $24.99 via the PlayStation Network and the Xbox Live Marketplace.
NASCAR The Game: Inside Line marks Activision's final entry in the NASCAR series, as publisher Deep Silver will take over publishing duties for next year's NASCAR 14.
Two Tribes is aiming to launch Rush on the Wii U eShop by December 12. The news comes from a tweet explaining the developer needs only submit certain pieces of content on time to meet the date.
Rush is a 3D puzzle game, available currently on the PC, where players must guide colored cubes to their designated exits by using various means such as conveyor belts, warp points and more. For a better sense of the mechanics, see the Steam announcement trailer above.