Skyrim: Bethesda Reveals Dragon Ally, Shouts, New Footage | NowGamer

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Skyrim: Bethesda Reveals Dragon Ally, Shouts, New Footage

Tom Hopkins

 

Bethesda’s Todd Howard spills the beans on Skyrim.

Published on Oct 21, 2011

Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim will have six types of dragons, and players will be able to call one as an ally to help them fight in any outside location in the game, Bethesda’s Todd Howard has told GTTV.

“There is a point in the game where you earn the allegiance of one of these other dragons, who is named,” Howard explained. “When you have the allegiance of this dragon you can shout and call his name to the sky, and then where he is in the world he will fly and come and help you.”

Howard added that the team-up occurs later in the game. “You can do this wherever you want – in town, or in a massive fight outside.” You can even call the dragon to help you fight another dragon, Howard added.

He also detailed new Dragon Shout powers – Ice Form and Elemental Fury.

“We have a cool one called ‘Ice Form’ where you shout it and you can encase your enemies in ice,” he said. “What’s cool about this is you can either paralyse them and leave them there and they’ll be taking damage, or you can run up and shatter the ice and hurt them yourself. So it’s a reallly cool way of dealing eith different combat scenarios.”

The other shout is more of a buff, Howard said. “Another one we have is called ‘Elemental Fury’. This is one where you can actually shout at your weapons, and air forms around them and you can swing them faster. So if you have a really good sword you like you can use that shout and do damage at a faster rate.”

Check out GTTV for all the details and brand new footage.

Skyrim launches for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 on 11 November 2011.

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New Battlefield 3 Buyers Get Mass Effect 3 Demo Early

New Battlefield 3 Buyers Get Mass Effect 3 Demo Early.

 

Mass Effect 3Ahead of the Mass Effect trilogy wrapping up in March, fans will have a chance to try out Mass Effect 3‘s single-player and multiplayer in January.

Plans to launch a demo in January have been announced by BioWare. An exact date for its release is to be announced in late November according to an FAQ posted on the BioWare forums. The multiplayer portion will be available earlier to a select group of people, including those who redeem an online pass for Battlefield 3 (which comes free with new copies of the game).

Multiplayer support in ME3 was rumored for months before finally being confirmed earlier this month. It’s an online co-op mode that can affect the outcome of the single-player game. It’s completely optional, though, and single-player fans can still complete the story in the most ideal way possible without ever so much as looking in multiplayer’s direction.

The most straightforward way to guarantee early access to demo’s multiplayer component is to activate a Battlefield 3 online pass on any of the game’s three platforms. There will be no need for a code of any sort — the early access is applied to the EA Account your online pass was redeemed on. One benefit of this setup is that you can, for example, buy Battlefield 3 on PC and then play ME3’s multiplayer demo early on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3.

Besides the online pass route, other ways to get into the multiplayer demo early will be announced in late November or early December.

Just how early the “early access” will be hasn’t yet been outlined; we’ll learn that detail at a later time. But before you consider purchasing Battlefield 3 purely out of a desire to get into the demo as soon as possible, keep in mind the sort of early access that Medal of Honor Limited Edition buyers were given to the Battlefield 3 beta: all of two days.

The single-player part of the demo isn’t going to be made available to anyone early. Everyone will get to experience that for the first time when the demo is officially rolled out in January.

World of Warcraft: Mists of Panderia trailer video | PC Gamer, et al

World of Warcraft: Mists of Panderia announced | PC Gamer.

World of Warcraft: Mists of Panderia announced

Tom Senior at 07:50pm October 21 2011

The Pandaren are coming to World of Warcraft! The expansion will add the Panderan race and their homeland, Panderia. We’re also getting a new class, the monk, and the level cap will be raised to 90.

Mists of Panderia will also add new PVE scenarios, a pet battle system and a new talent system.

In the new expansion, Alliance and Horde will take their conflict to Panderia, a “land of balance and harmony and beauty, and hope.” Previous World of Warcraft expansions have added colossal evil forces, in Mists of Panderia “the true enemy of the franchise is going to be war itself.”

Blizzcon 2011 Live Coverage

1UP's Blizzcon 2011 Coverage

Mists of Pandaria is the Fourth World of Warcraft Expansion

A new race, a new class, a level cap of 90 and more on the way.

By Chris Pereira, 10/21/2011

World of Warcraft Mists of PandariaWorld of Warcraft Mists of PandariaWorld of Warcraft Mists of Pandaria

As a former hardcore WoW’er, I have to say I am personally disappointed with Blizz on this one.  Really?  Seriously?  Kung-Fu Pandas?  Isn’t that some kind of IP violation?  Anyway, After BC, the devs started to get really bad at recycling things and churning out generic artwork.  While the architecture and environment for this expansion might end up being a welcome addition (if it’s not simply a recycled stranglethorn), I still can’t get over the giant fat kung-fu pandas.  Well, technically “monks” but close enough for horseshoes and hand grenades.  What do you think?  Lame or awesome?

Changes Coming

Some changes will be coming to the menu system.  After some deliberation and investigating, I have determined that the format of the site as it currently stands isn’t a good solution for more in depth usage than simple news aggregation.  Therefore, I will be minimizing some of the menu areas and consolidating others.  Look for a more streamlined and efficient UI soon.  If traffic trends continue the way they are, I anticipate off-loading from WordPress to my own domain!  I’m very excited and I appreciate all the traffic, especially those who come back time and time again to get their PC gaming news from Screaming Byte.  Thank you!

Kevin

Star Wars: The Old Republic | News, Updates, Developer Blogs

Star Wars: The Old Republic | News, Updates, Developer Blogs.

 

When we announced that Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ was available for Pre-Order, we also told you about the many digital items that come as a bonus for purchasing the game. While there is a pre-order bonus for everyone who secures their copy of the game regardless of the edition pre-ordered, some of these digital items are reserved for those of you who purchase either the Digital Deluxe Edition or Collector’s Edition of the game.

To add clarity, we’ve decided to break down the digital items that you will be able to gain access to in each edition of Star Wars: The Old Republic.

All Pre-Orders:

  • Color Stone. Included as part of every pre-order of Star Wars: The Old Republic, the Color Stone is a special crystal that players can use to change the color of any lightsaber blade or blaster bolt to a yellow hue encased in a black outer shell.

This item will be unlocked and tied to your account when you register your pre-order code on the StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com Code Redemption Center.

Digital Deluxe Edition:

These items are included as bonuses for the Digital Deluxe Edition.

  • Flare Gun. The Flare Gun is a small cosmetic device that allows you to fire a particle flare high into the sky above your character’s head.
  • Training Droid. A small but advanced piece of machinery, the Training Droid will hover by your side as you explore the galaxy. The Training Droid will also serve you in combat, marking your target with a particle effect that clearly identifies them as an enemy.
  • HoloDancer. The HoloDancer allows you to take the party with you in your travels and can be deployed at almost any time by activating the HoloDancer and targeting the ground near your character.
  • HoloCam. The HoloCam lets your character take high-resolution images of the countless wonders that they will discover on their journey across the galaxy.
  • STAP. The STAP, or Single Trooper Aerial Platform, is a custom-skinned vehicle that you will be able to acquire at no cost to you. The vehicle itself will become available once your character gains the ability to pilot vehicles.

Once you redeem your Digital Deluxe Game Code on the http://www.StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com Code Redemption Center, these items will be unlocked on your account and will be available to any character you make.

Collector’s Edition:

In addition to the items included in the Digital Deluxe Edition, the Collector’s Edition of Star Wars: The Old Republic includes the following items.

  • Mouse Droid. This mouse droid, custom-skinned for Collector’s Edition owners, serves as a faithful pet that will follow you as you make your way across the galaxy.
  • Collector’s Edition Store. At launch the Collector’s Edition Store will be available to those who have the Collector’s Edition of The Old Republic, and will feature items found nowhere else in the game! The Collector’s Edition will be stocked with exclusive social items for yourself, and unique appearances for your companion. The store will also have regular updates to give players incentive to keep coming back.

These items will be unlocked for you when you redeem your pre-order or game code on the http://www.StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com Code Redemption Center. Once unlocked, you will be able to access them with any character you create on that account. Of course the only way for you to have access to these items at launch is to pre-order the game for yourself, so be sure to visit our Pre-Order page and secure your spot in The Old Republic now!

Watch Now

Skyrim’s Perfect World – PC Preview at IGN

Skyrim’s Perfect World – PC Preview at IGN.

 

If there’s one thing that games almost always lack, with their eagerness to entertain and often underdeveloped scripts, it’s believability. It usually stems from a lack of cohesion: it’s difficult to believe that you’re wandering around a real world when everything that you can interact with gleams with a highlighted shine, or when helpful tips keep popping up to remind you to press Y to get on your horse, or when there’s a ridiculous story told in unskippable cutscenes. You’re often snapped back to real life by their lack of subtlety.

Indeed, modern games are so tailored to the player’s comfort that they often compromise their own fiction for the sake of it, making things purposefully obvious and easy to digest instead of rich and rewarding. The end result is that their worlds aren’t easy to really believe in. How many times in a game have you really felt like you were wandering around in a real place, rather than a series of carefully-crafted scenarios for you to “experience”?

Bethesda has always excelled here, creating games that succeed where almost all others come up short. Bethesda’s worlds exist independently of you, the player. Follow a Skingrad drug-dealer as she leaves her home in Oblivion, and you’ll see her spend an entire day and a half walking all the way across the world to the Imperial City to supply some off-the-wagon soldier with Skooma, whether you’re there to watch her do it or not. That haggard old booze hound in the derelict bar in Fallout 3 will sit there all day, getting up occasionally for a go at the slots. Foxes chase rabbits, wolves chase foxes, and guards valiantly defend villages from bandits (and dragons). Bethesda is far from the only developer to attempt this natural, player-independent game ecology, but it has always done it extraordinarily well.

 

http://media.ign.com/ev/prod/embed.swf

Hidden structures and abandoned buildings and caves and dungeons are there for you to stumble across, but you may never find them. You’re never guided towards them, never forced to explore. History, mythology and plotting are there for you, too, but couched in contextual narrative (like the diaries in a deceased traveller’s pocket, or the smeared bloodstains on a wall, or the books lining the shelves of a magician’s library) rather than forced upon you in cutscenes or painstakingly explained in dialogue.

It’s this, more than anything else, that’s had me excited about Skyrim since the minute it was announced. But after seeing the game’s opening hours, it looks to me like Skyrim might be an even better-crafter world than Oblivion’s or Morrowind’s before it (I’d namecheck Fallout 3 as well, but really I’m a New Vegas girl). Self-sufficient, detailed, and with a rich and ludicrously detailed body of mythology and background behind it, Skyrim might turn out to be gaming’s closest thing to a perfect world.

Alchemy and crafting play a much more significant role in Skyrim than in any Elder Scrolls game. Every plant and animal seems to serve a purpose – for potion-making, armour-crafting or weapons forging, or the new cooking system. Raw ingredients like meats and plants have small effects on your character’s wellbeing when you eat them, but combine them together over in a cauldron over a fire and the benefits are more pronounced. You find recipes through natural experimentation – not from a menu, not from an entry in a quest log telling you exactly how many of each ingredient to collect and where to find them. It relies on your natural curiosity.

It’s an incredibly enticing prospect for the natural gaming hunter-gatherer when every collectible thing has its uses. You can even swim in Skyrim’s rivers, plucking fish out of the water and roasting them on a campfire spit later. A familiar alchemy lab, meanwhile, lets you magic things like bonemeal and plants into potions to help you or hurt your enemies, experimenting with different combinations of ingredients to negate or catalyse their negative effects.

Smithing is rather more complicated. You can mine ore from deposits all over the place – from the tops of mountains to underground caves – which then has to be turned into ingots before you can use it for a helmet or a sword or a breastplate at a forge using hammer and bellows. There are grindstones for improving blades as you develop your skills. Meanwhile, all those wolf pelts that you inevitably accumulate on your adventures can be cured and made into useful, wearable, smithable leather for use at a workbench. As well as treasure and secret nuggets of Elder Scrolls mythology, you’ll now be searching for rare ores and ingredients in Skyrim’s hidden places. It’s yet another reason to explore, and another natural way of immersing you in the game’s fiction.

As ever in an Elder Scrolls game, all of this is controlled by your skills. In Skyrim’s great constellation of capabilities, there are whole branches dedicated to crafting and creation. This isn’t something that Bethesda has ever extensively explored in its games before, at least not further than Fallout 3 and its weapons blueprints. It’s an aspect of RPG convention that’s usually confined to MMOs.

All of this makes me feel like I could happily spend hours and hours just living in Skyrim’s world, without bothering at all with the story, just as I did in Oblivion before it – except this time there’s even more to obsess over. In creating such self-sufficient, complete worlds, Bethesda has already brought games forward in several significant ways, and if Skyrim pulls off everything it’s trying to do then it will be the developer’s most significant achievement yet.

If there’s one microcosmic representation of this developer’s love for the richly detailed place that it has created, it’s the map screen. Zoom out and you can see all the snow-capped mountains, valleys, settlements, ridges and gleaming lakes of Skyrim recreated in perfectly detailed miniature, fogged in places by whisps of cloud. It’s a place I cannot wait to delve into; as the 11th November release date grows ever closer, my anticipation just keeps building.

Battlefield 3 Pre-Order Preload Download at Amazon.com

The Battlefield 3 Pre-Order Preload Download price at Amazon.com has dropped AGAIN!  Take advantage of this opportunity to get your Limited Edition (with Amazon exclusive Dog Tag Pack and Return To Karkand expansion pack – The expansion includes four legendary maps from Battlefield 2 boldly re-imagined in the Frostbite 2 engine, as well as Battlefield 2 weapons, vehicles, and unique rewards.

The price is down to $49.98!  That’s way cheaper than a lot of the other guys out there right now.  I already have mine ordered and preload downloading has already started!  Activation will be enabled on the servers at midnight Pacific time on the 25th!

 

Click here to go to the Amazon.com page for the BF3 PC Download preorder.

“StarCraft MMO” Starts PvP Beta – PC News at IGN

“StarCraft MMO” Starts PvP Beta – PC News at IGN.

 

A fan-made Starcraft MMO has finally gained some legitimacy. The mod is titled World of Starcraft, and has finally been given official approval from Blizzard after some initial hesitation.

Since then, development has continued, and PvP beta tests have now begun. You can learn more about the mod on the official site, as well as check out the PvP trailer below.

Most mods are given out freely, but, with Blizzard still eyeing a mod marketplace for Starcraft II, I can easily see them making a killing off this.