Replay – Diablo

With news of Diablo III heading to Switch, we decided to look back at the game that started it all…on PlayStation. We figure this clunky console port is the best way for people to see just how old the Diablo series is. You’ll quickly learn that it’s super old. Like “are we looking at a wall or door?” kind of old.

Diablo originally released on PC on December 31, 1996, and many of the hallmark features we turn to this series for today were in that original version. Jeff Cork joins me for a co-op session, and we make a decent amount of progress before disaster sinks in. Turns out, Cork should not be trusted with a bow and arrow.

We also dive into a number of NES games for a variety of quick looks. Enjoy the episode, and come back for a new one in seven days!

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‘Mind Over Mushroom’ Offers Free-Roaming Tactical Battles Against Fungal Foes

Goodbye grid, hello freedom! Mind Over Mushroom takes tactical battles and ditches the grid structure for a more challenging fight, letting you wander as you battle spore-controlled foes. Players will have to mind their distance, as you’re free of grid restraints and able to wander freely (barring terrain obstacles, of course). Be mindful of your positioning and make use of the range of your characters to eliminate some devious fungi.

The world has been consumed by fungus (Gross). People have been infected and controlled by spores, and the only hope for salvation is to defeat the shrooms at their source. You’ll need a few good heroes, and a strong tactical strategy to overcome the journey there, though. Luckily, Mind Over Mushroom is chock full of characters with unique skills and strengths to use in battle. Need a big explosion to wipe out a cluster of foes? Maybe break out the walking bombs. Call up a necromancer to make use of the dead. Send out a carnivorous plant to eat your troubles. There’s even a giant snail, because why not?

With 25 different battles to overcome, and terrains to navigate, you’ll have your hands …read more

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‘Bloons Adventure Time TD’ is ‘Bloons TD’ with Adventure Time Characters (Duh) and it’s Launching August 30th

Here’s something that could almost be its own genre on the App Store: Adventure Time versions of popular games. And now we’re getting one more as the mega-popular Bloons TD franchise from Ninja Kiwi is partnering up with Cartoon Network for Bloons Adventure Time TD later this month. The original Bloons started way back as a Flash game before coming to the iPhone in the spring of 2009, and had you playing monkeys shooting darts at balloons. It spawned a number of sequels and spinoffs, including the original Bloons TD which launched in October of that same year and offered up more monkeys popping balloons with darts but in a top-down tower defense style setting, which was ALL the rage back then. These games have really resonated with fans over the years and Ninja Kiwi just launched the sixth(!) entry in the Bloons TD series earlier this year. Now with this new partnership the colorful cast of characters from Adventure Time are here to pop some bloons.

I really can’t believe it’s been nearly ten years since Bloons first came to the iPhone, and that there’s been so many additional games in the series …read more

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New Super Mario Bros. U Is Reportedly Coming to Switch

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze have shown that Nintendo is more than willing to flesh out Switch’s library with Wii U ports. And if a new report is to be believed, the next Wii U game to make the jump could be New Super Mario Bros. U.

Comic Book reports multiple sources, who are purportedly “linked with Nintendo,” have suggested New Super Mario Bros. U will be updated and re-released for Switch “as early as this year.”

According to the site’s sources, Nintendo plans to package the New Super Luigi U DLC with the Switch port. While the DLC and base game were originally released separately — in 2013 and 2012, respectively — they were later sold together as part of the Nintendo Selects line of budget-priced Wii U games.

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AC Odyssey’s Mercenaries Provide Unending Challenges

In addition to its transition into a full-fleged RPG, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is introducing multiple revamped mechanics systems, from its signature naval combat to the ever-changing world of Ancient Greece. One element in particular that’s meant to give players an added layer of immersion and challenge throughout the course of the game:a bounty system featuring randomly-generated elite enemies scattered throughout the world.

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‘Returner Zhero’ is the Follow-Up to Excellent First-Person Puzzler ‘Returner 77’, Coming August 30th

Around this time last year we had something of a first-person puzzler explosion. The highly-anticipated mobile release of Jonathan Blow’s The Witness ($9.99) arrived in September, followed by the mobile port of the similarly acclaimed The Talos Principle ($4.99) courtesy of developer Croteam and publisher Devolver Digital just a few weeks later. Amongst those heavyweights in the genre was a plucky newcomer called Returner 77 ($4.99) from developer Fantastic, yes Studio which launched just a week later and became something of a sleeper hit amongst our community, and could nicely be summed up as “The Room but in space.” Last fall was truly a great time to be an adventure gamer. Now Fantastic, yes is readying their follow-up to Returner 77 called Returner Zhero and it is looking awesome in this following teaser trailer.

The whole atmosphere of that trailer and especially that giant creature at the end just gives me goosebumps. The official description of Returner Zhero is: “Explore a story about friendship and sacrifice, as you take on the role of the scientist who risked everything to learn more about the aliens. Lose yourself in a captivating, tactile 3D …read more

Movado Group acquires watch startup MVMT

The Movado Group, which sells multiple brands including Lacoste, Tommy Hilfiger and Hugo Boss, has purchased MVMT, a small watch company founded by Jacob Kassan and Kramer LaPlante in 2013. The company, which advertised heavily on Facebook, logged $71 million in revenue in 2017. Movado purchased the company for $100 million.

The acquisition of MVMT will provide us greater access to millennials and advances our Digital Center of Excellence initiative with the addition of a powerful brand managed by a successful team of highly creative, passionate and talented individuals,” Movado Chief Executive Efraim Grinberg said.

MVMT makes simple watches for the Millennial market in the vein of Fossil or Daniel Wellington. However, the company carved out a niche by advertising heavily on social media and being one of the first microbrands with a solid online presence.

“It provides an opportunity to Movado Group’s portfolio as MVMT continues to cross-sell products within its existing portfolio, expand product offerings within its core categories of watches, sunglasses and accessories, and grow its presence in new markets through its direct-to-consumer and wholesale business,” said Grinberg.

MVMT is well-known as a “fashion brand,” namely a brand that sells cheaper quartz watches that are sold …read more

‘Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp’ Launches Surprise Garden Event

I wasn’t alone in waking up this morning to Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp (Free) pushing a small update, and opening afterward to the beginning of an unexpected event. Not only is the Flower Festival seemingly coming out of nowhere, it’s also an entirely new type of event. Instead of spending time in the garden collecting bugs and trading with friends, this event is all about planting, harvesting, and cross-pollinating event-exclusive flowers.

The Flower Festival is also a rare event in that it has no host. Simply trade with Lloyd while in your garden to receive the rewards. The focus is on special Zinnia seeds and flowers, some being easier to earn than others. The four colors, in order of rarity, are red, yellow, green, and blue. Cross-pollinate flowers to breed the different seed colors. Red and red equals yellow seeds. Yellow and yellow equals green seeds. And green plus green equals blue seeds.

You’re not just breeding flowers for the sake of it, of course. You can trade for flower pots, furniture, clothing, and a variety of essences and crafting materials. For the flower pots, each colour can be earned by trading five of the same color of flowers. You …read more

15 Random Tidbits About Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

All throughout August, we’re updating our site with information about the game on our latest cover, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. In addition to the 14-page print feature that subscribers can read, we’ve had in-depth features on mercenaries, a look at some of the gameplay loops you can participate in, and a blast of rapid-fire questions with the game’s director. Not everything we learn during our studio visit fits neatly into a larger feature, though. Rather than leave those little tidbits in the shadows, we’ve compiled some of the most interesting nuggets and are sharing them with you.

1. You’re going to get to know the historian Herodotus over the course of your journey. “Herodotus goes along with you on the main path for a while, and then he ends up on your ship and stays with you,” says Scott Phillips, game director of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Hold up. Who’s Herodotus again? “He is well known for recording the events of the wars and going around to different cultures so we have a better idea of who the Greeks were and how they lived and beyond,” says narrative director Melissa MacCoubrey. “He is very good at chronicling those. And then …read more

God of War Combat Designer Breaks Down That First Intense Boss Fight

A lot of work went in to the latest God of War, and the finished result reflects that, but a particularly large amount of effort went into the game’s memorable first boss fight. SIE Santa Monica Studio recently revealed a deep-dive into its development process of creating that first boss.

Spoiler warning: if you haven’t played God of War yet, and you don’t want anything ruined, turn back now.

In a PlayStation Blog post, senior staff combat designer Denny Yeh ran down dozens of details that the team went through when creating the first fight against Baldur – known as The Stranger in the beginning of the game.

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