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Far Cry 4 season pass offers yetis, drugs and prison breaks

For those who want to spend a bit more time in Kyrat than Far Cry 4 offers on its own comes the $30 season pass, which offers a handful of new missions and an additional player vs player gameplay mode.

At launch, those who've purchased the season pass will receive exclusive access to The Syringe, a mission in which players must keep a potent drug from falling into the hands of warlord Pagan Min. Escape From Durgesh Prison, as its name suggests, sees players attempting to escape from one of Min's prisons, either solo or with a friend playing as series mainstay Hurk. Speaking of Hurk, the lovable explosives expert brings with him an five additional missions that introduce a number of new weapons, including a harpoon gun.

On the more supernatural side of things, we have Valley of the Yetis, a mission that drops our hero onto a frozen mountaintop populated both by a mysterious cult and the mysterious, hairy creatures of its title. The Overrun multiplayer game type likewise dips into the arcane as players assume the role of either Rakshasa or a member of the Golden Path in a battle to wrest control of map locations from your opponents.

Unfortunately lacking from Ubisoft's announcement is word on when these downloadable additions will become available to season pass holders. The Syringe is slated to debut alongside Far Cry 4 on November 18, but otherwise Ubisoft has yet to reveal when the $30 season pass will pay off.
[Image: Ubisoft]

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343: Halo Collection's launch patch negates a second disc

Following outrage at a 20GB day-one update planned for the upcoming Halo: The Master Chief Collection, head of Halo franchise development Frank O'Connor took to NeoGAF to defend the design decision.

According to O'Connor, that 20GB of data is not a fix for in-game issues, but is instead game content that would have otherwise required that the game ship on multiple Blu-ray discs. "The game is designed to run as a single, unified product, digital is seamless obviously, but we also wanted disc users to have the same experience, without swapping discs," O'Connor told one irate fan. He then added that a title update (read: patch) would be included in the 20GB update, but that it is a "tiny fraction" of the total download. "We realize that this isn't ideal for everyone, but it's the path to the smoothest eventual experience."

While we won't know for sure what's included in the update until it arrives, O'Connor's claim that the game was simply too large to fit on one disc has merit. As we've explained, Halo: The Master Chief Collection includes remastered versions of the first four Halo games, as well as over 100 multiplayer maps.

Ubisoft Toronto founder Jade Raymond departs to pursue 'new opportunities'

Longtime Ubisoft producer and collaborator Jade Raymond has left the company, citing a need to "pursue my other ambitions and new opportunities."

Raymond joined Ubisoft as a producer of the Assassin's Creed series in 2004, and went on to found subsidiary Ubisoft Toronto. Raymond's recent credits include Watch Dogs and Splinter Cell: Blacklist. Fellow Ubisoft Toronto founding member Alexandre Parizeau will fill Raymond's vacated position as managing director.

"I've spent 10 extraordinary years at Ubisoft, and I am proud to have been part of many of the best teams in the industry making truly remarkable games," Raymond said. "This is one of the hardest decisions of my career, but the Toronto studio is strong and on a solid path. I'm confident that now is a good time for me to transition leadership of the studio to Alex and to pursue my other ambitions and new opportunities. Stay tuned for more on what's next for me, but for now, I'd like to thank Ubisoft for its partnership through the years, and I wish them the very best in all their next endeavors."

[Image: Jade Raymond / Wikipedia]

Editor's Note: We Are Always Fighting

We are always fighting.

The first video game I ever played, Space Invaders, rendered fighting in a sickly green hue, with squid-like aliens descending down the bulbous surface of a beige monitor. As much as I admired their patient and orderly see-saw attack pattern on our planet, it made it easy to blow them away from below. You see, it's not about the violence, but timing and pattern recognition.

My other starting game was some kind of Mad Libs program, which accepted a list of nouns and verbs and then spat out a boring or comical story, depending on how creative your input was. The key to playing this game well, I determined, was baking a well-timed "pie" into the plot. The archer reaches into his quiver and removes ... a pie! Help, the sheriff's been shot in the pie! The crowd sucked the air out of the room as the boxer fell to a critical blow from his opponent ... the PIE. You see, a video game lets players control (and probably ruin) the story.

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Living without a head in The Evil Within

Image Having a head is so last season. All the stylish kids get through the trial and error of The Evil Within without a head.... Continue Reading

Fifa fo fum, who smells the blood of an English man?

Chart-Track's post-FIFA portion of the year rolls along on the UK charts, with the footie franchise holding the top spot now for four straight weeks. Hunting the perennial performer was The Evil Within and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel in second and third, respectively.

Although Chart-Track doesn't share unit sales, it should be noted Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel's third place showing is impressive given that it's only available for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC (nor does this count digital distribution). Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor is fighting death in fourth place despite a 51 percent drop from last week. Alien: Isolation is holding on tight in sixth before it gets sucked out the airlock. Run past the break for the UK top ten.

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Non-PS4 versions of Oddworld: New 'n Tasty still underway, still not dated

PS4 users have been able to enjoy Oddworld: New 'n Tasty, developer Just Add Water's overhauled take on the original release of Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, since July of this year. Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, Vita, PC, Mac, Linux and Wii U owners only have a TBA 2014 window to anticipate however, and series creator Lorne Lanning's recent appearance on the Fragments of Silicon podcast hasn't changed that.

When asked about the remaining releases, Lanning said that while each version is being "adamantly worked on," he would be "an idiot to give you a date." Lanning added that the team is "committed to making sure those games are as good as they can possibly be on those platforms. We're far more committed to that than we are a date."

In terms of the Wii U version, Lanning noted the team is "having challenges with not having a hard disk," and added that "if you're gonna make a game for the Wii U, it better run on the 8 gig unit." Considering the PS4 version of New 'n Tasty is 4.5 GB and the Wii U operating system takes a hefty chunk of the 8 GB model's internal memory, external devices would be the only way to fit New 'n Tasty on that model, unless crafty compression is achieved. A tweet from the series' official account later clarified that space is not the only issue with launching New 'n Tasty on the Wii U.

"At the end of the day, it's ultimately time and money and 'Can you do it?'," Lanning continued, adding that the team is still giving the Wii U version their all. Whichever non-PS4 platform you're anticipating New 'n Tasty's arrival for, your eagerness seems justified based on Weekend Editor Sam Prell's review.

Destiny's next patch to address Vault of Glass' buggy boss

If you've been running and re-running Destiny's Vault of Glass raid in hopes of obtaining exotic gear, you may have already learned about various tricks and exploits people are using to speed up their adventures. One of the most popular involves knocking the raid's final boss, Atheon, off a ledge, letting gravity do the dirty work of killing him.

It's quick, efficient and relatively easy, but not exactly what Bungie had in mind for an epic final showdown. To that end, they're patching the Atheon battle so that he can't be knocked off, while simultaneously changing how he targets players. Currently, Atheon will send the three players furthest from him through space and time to an alternate battlefield, where they'll stay until their teammates open a portal for them so they can return. Once the fix goes live, he'll target three players at random.

Enjoy knocking a titan of terror off into the dark depths of the Vault of Glass while you can, Guardians; Atheon's fixes go live next week.
[Image: Activision]

Ex Diablo, Torchlight devs unveil faction-based Rebel Galaxy


Space-age video game futures have plenty of spotless, sleek ships under the command of yawning empires, but Rebel Galaxy seems to focus on the scrappier spacecrafts flying between planets and asteroids. The game's PlayStation Blog post welcomes future pilots to play as mercenaries, traders, pirates and rogue heroes, surviving in a sandbox universe with a faction system connected to a player's actions and conversation-based choices.

Rebel Galaxy is the work of Double Damage Games, a studio co-founded by Travis Baldree and Erich Schaefer (Game Designer on Diablo 1 & 2), the same pair that founded Torchlight series developer Runic Games. Baldree likens its take on zero-gravity dogfights to naval combat like what's found in Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag, though the PS Blog post notes that players will pilot the "big, weapon-bristling ships" rather than pecking away at them with speck-sized vessels.

Rebel Galaxy's larger ships will follow a 2D plane, whereas smaller crafts are free-flying fodder for turrets, be they personally piloted or manned by player-assigned AI. Dialog choices are also tied more to general relations with factions than individual characters or romance-based subplots.

Baldree has clarified that Rebel Galaxy will not feature multiplayer and won't be $60, but somewhere "in the downloadable title price range." Though the trailer above gives a decent sense of what to expect, Rebel Galaxy won't reach the final frontier until 2015 on PS4, Steam and, according to the official site's announcing post, "maybe" Xbox One.
[Image: Double Damage Games]

Halo 2: Anniversary getting a making-of documentary



In an upcoming documentary that's bound to make the wait for Halo: The Master Chief Collection's November 11 launch more painful, fans will get a peek at what went into tackling the compilation's most-anticipated piece. 343 Industries has released the above teaser for Remaking the Legend - Halo 2 Anniversary, which appears to be a reflection on Halo 2's initial significance as well as the work involved in bringing it to Xbox One.

Head of Xbox Phil Spencer, Xbox spokesperson Larry "Major Nelson" Hyrb and 343 Studio Head Bonnie Ross are among the figures featured in the trailer, which signs off by promising the full work is coming soon.
[Image: 343 Industries]

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare launch trailer has guns, Kevin Spacey, double XP

Image Sure there's guns galore in this Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare launch trailer, but virtual Kevin Spacey overshadows all of them. Pre-ordering will get you 24 hour early access (along with double XP and a bunch of guns) but really, we just want more of that handsome man. Mmm. [Image:... Continue Reading

Mighty No. 9 will feature English voice acting thanks to vote

Mighty No. 9, Comcept's spirtual successor to the Mega Man series, will feature English voice acting according to an update on the game's Kickstarter page. A vote which drew more than 20,000 participants was the deciding factor, and according to the update, the vote was never more than 1,000 votes from going in favor of English or Japanese.

Back in July, Comcept updated their crowdfunding efforts and asked for $200,000 to add both English and Japanese voices. However, at the beginning of October, a Kickstarter update explained that funding was insufficient for supporting both languages.

"Rather than stick to the revised target of $200K for both English and Japanese voice acting and close it down short of the goal, we've decided to lower the goal back to the original $100K for one language," the update reads. "And, rather than dictate which one voiced language we offer in the game, we want to put it to a vote and let you, our loyal backers decide: English or Japanese!" Now that the votes have been tallied, it appears the former is the winner.

Mighty No. 9 is due to release in spring of 2015 for ten mighty systems: PC, Mac, Linux, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Vita, Wii U and 3DS.
[Image: Comcept]

Assassin's Creed Unity Steelbook Edition only on Uplay

Those with an undying love for physical media should prowl Ubisoft's Uplay store for a peek at Assassin's Creed Unity's Steelbook Edition, a $64.99 target housing PS4, Xbox One and PC downloads of the game. The Steelbook features a stained-glass take of Unity's protagonist, Arno, drawn by illustrator Tony Moore, the same artist that worked with Rob Zombie on an ultra-violent short celebrating the Assassin's Creed series.

Reinforced protection for your disc (or voucher) is joined by an official soundtrack and art book, all of which should be heading for your door by Unity's general November 11 launch day. Editor-in-Chief Ludwig Kietzmann recently followed Unity's stealth-favoring lead, and while he thinks its crouch-activated stealth mode is "effective and snapping to cover worked well on every surface," Ludwig's Arno "often climbed the wrong way" and was hindered by a framerate that "seems to have a lot of trouble keeping up with Unity's huge crowds and vivid lighting, which impacts Arno's responsiveness."
[Image: Ubisoft]

Korean ratings board suggests Limbo coming to Xbox One

Developer Playdead's eerie monochrome adventure Limbo may soon appear on the Xbox One, if a listing on the website of the South Korean Game Rating and Administration Committee is anything to go by.

Discovered by NeoGAF posters, the listing offers scant details, but does indicate that Microsoft's Korean arm submitted an Xbox One version of Limbo to the GRAC for approval. No further information is available as the game is still under review.

While this listing is no guarantee that Limbo will reach the Xbox One, either in South Korea or elsewhere, ratings agencies have a long history of revealing a game's existence prior to an official announcement. The Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of Rocksmith 2014 were revealed by the ESRB and GRAC prior to Ubisoft's unveiling, just as the Pan European Game Information group outed the Xbox One version of Stick It To The Man before it was made official.
[Image: Playdead]

Halo: Master Chief Collection worldwide launch pushed up

Microsoft and 343 Industries have moved the worldwide launch date of Halo: The Master Chief Collection up to November 11, the same day as the North American release. The game was originally due out on November 11 in North America and November 14 internationally. Most countries will now get the game on the same day, with a few exceptions: Belgium's date is now November 12, Japan is November 13, and France is November 14.

"Some fans expressed disappointment in our original planned release date of November 11 in North America and November 14 in several other territories around the world. We heard you loud and clear," 343 Executive Producer Dan Ayoub said in a letter. He continued, "Given the social aspects of the experience, we were really happy to get it as close to a simultaneous worldwide release as possible so that we can all celebrate on November 11 and start playing together."

Spartan Ops, the co-op campaign from Halo 4, will not be included in The Master Chief Collection at launch – instead, it will hit the game in December. The Master Chief Collection is 45GB, and there will be a day-one update estimated at 20GB, Ayoub said.

"Yes, the update is large, but we weren't about to cut corners to save disc space," he said. "This ensures that you are getting every bit of Halo goodness we can fit in. Our work is not done, however, as we continue to tune, tweak and optimize the online experience to ensure a smooth multiplayer launch."

As a reminder: here's everything in the MC Collection.

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