Arcade Genre RSS Feed | Arcade on GameSkinny en Launch Media Network FIFA 20 Demo: Reactions to the Latest Generation are Mixed Sat, 14 Sep 2019 09:00:01 -0400 RobertPIngram

With the summer transfer deadline in the rearview mirror and club rosters finalized, that means that the dawn of a new year of FIFA is just around the corner.

While fans will still have to wait until September 24 to get their hands on the full version of FIFA 20, the demo is available early, and it gives players just a small taste of what's to come this year. While the standard demo fare rears its head, like a limited assortment of teams to actually play as, the big news is the ability to try the new street soccer VOLTA mode.

After spending some time with the demo, the news is mixed for fans of the series.

Full Side Play Stars

Although VOLTA might have stolen headlines since the announcement of the new feature, the core of any FIFA game will always be its ability to create a realistic and fun simulation when it comes to full-side of world-class soccer, and FIFA 20 lives up to the series' lofty standards. 

FIFA has long been the standard-bearer for EA's various sports simulations, and while each new iteration has been loaded with buzz words and big talk, it's fair to say there has generally been an "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach to the game's mechanics.

With FIFA 20, that is still the clear operating premise. While the game doesn't feel exactly like its predecessor, and elite-level players may remain upset about the increased variance in chained skill maneuvers, if you've played a recent edition of FIFA, you'll likely find that you're right back in the swing of things in short order.

If you're new to the series or haven't played in a few years, don't worry about your skills. The game's default trainer overlay provides visual cues for suggested actions and the button or stick combinations to perform them, so you can hit the ground running.

While the new features aren't revolutionary, they're not invisible either, and at the end of the day, what you're left with is another very strong performance from the FIFA team.

VOLTA Disappoints... For Now

Before getting into my hands-on experience with the new mode, it's important to remember that a limited demo with only one-offs is far from the full picture of a game. With that large caveat out there, however, the early look is a big let down.

While the early talk of the new mode was appealing, with the game taking a realistic approach to small-sided games, what's actually delivered so far doesn't quite live up to expectations. 

The game leans into the flair and style of street ball, with standard passes and lobs occasionally being delivered in show-stopping, over-the-top manners, but the mode lacks the fluidity you'd hope for with a proper streetball option. Although highly skilled players may have more luck using flair and style to their advantage, new payers may find themselves playing the same game only cramped, ironically finding that the game, in turn, feels more bogged down than a standard match.

That's not to say there isn't promise in the mode, though. Just by the very nature of changing the dynamics of the game it does provide a fun alternative to standard play. Three-a-side on a tiny pitch is a vastly different experience, as is trying to tuck the ball into the game's small, keeper-less goals.

The first time my player rocketed a shot off a side wall then hammered in her own rebound for a self-pass goal was genuinely exhilarating, and the ability to have coed teams may seem small, but only if you've never been unable to squad up with your friends because your Pro is the wrong gender.

There are sprouts of how VOLTA may yet deliver on the promise of its first press release. Unless more is done to make the mode run smoother and the full options expand the world of VOLTA enough, however, it will remain a fun occasional diversion more than an expansive mode worth pouring hours into.

Final Whistle

As far as demos go, this is a promising showing from EA. There's every reason to believe that the standard favorites, from pro campaigns to FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT), will be as great as ever.

Although VOLTA failed to blow the doors off in demo form, it may well shine once players have access to the full array of options. If you're considering picking up FIFA 20, put on your game face and give the demo a spin.

While you wait for the game to arrive, be sure to check out our article on everything we know about the game, which includes everything from flair and career mode to pre-order information, trailers, and gameplay. 

FIFA 20 is set to release on September 27 for the PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. It will be included in Origin Access and EA Access.  

Borderlands 3: How to Redeem SHiFT Codes (Plus a Bunch of Vault Codes) Fri, 13 Sep 2019 17:17:37 -0400 Tobbpitt

SHiFT Codes are back in Borderlands 3, and with them have come VIP Codes for use by members of the Vault Insider Program. To top things off, there's already a free code for three Golden Keys you surely want to get your hands on.

Becoming part of the Vault Insider Program doesn't cost anything, and can be done on the VIP portion of the Borderlands 3 website. However, you must have a SHiFT account to sign up for the VIP — so before you get to crackin' some codes, you'll need to:

  1. Sign up for a SHiFT account here
  2. Sign up a Vault Insider Program account here

If you don't intend to sign up for the VIP, just skip the second step.

How to Get SHiFT Codes and VIP Points

Codes will be passed out via social media and other means, such as product purchases, much as they were with Borderlands 2. As a matter of fact, the very first free SHiFT code for the game was a Borderlands 2 code. Crazy, right?

You'll have to keep your eyes peeled over the coming weeks and months to grab up codes while you can.

VIP Points are another matter, which can be earned by participating in the program. Have a click around the VIP site once you've signed up to take a gander.

Be sure to link your preferred platform to your SHiFT account.

How to Redeem SHiFT Codes in Borderlands 3

You have three available methods for redeeming SHiFT Codes as it stands:

  • Go to the SHiFT website and redeem the code
  • Head to the game's main menu, navigate to SHiFT Code, and enter the code there
  • Go to the VIP website and redeem the code

Really, it's very easy, but again: Do be sure to link your preferred platform to your SHiFT account.

Free SHiFT Codes and Vault Points

The first free code I mentioned above must be put into the SHiFT website, and not the VIP website.

  • Three Golden Keys: ZFKJ3-TT3BB-JTBJT-T3JJT-JWX9H

However, more codes are being discovered. Some of these may not work for you, but try them all on the SHiFT website rather than in-game or the Borderlands 3 VIP website.

No guarantees, but here are some codes to try. Make sure you include the dashes, it's easiest to copy and paste. These were found spattered about Reddit, again: No guarantees!

  • One Golden Key: ZRWBJ-ST6XR-CBFKT-JT3J3-FRXJ5
  • One Golden Key: Z65B3-JCXX6-5JXW3-3B33J-9SWT6

As for Vault Point codes, these must be input into the Vault Insider Program site. It's best to put these in as soon as you can, who knows how long they'll last:

  • ABCEASYAS123 (250 Points)
  • ALMOSTTHERE (1000 Points)
  • BL3REVEAL (100 Points)
  • BL3ATE3 (250 Points)
  • BL3WELCOME (250 Points)
  • BUILDURSQUAD (250 Points)
  • CLAPTASTIC (250 Points)
  • Dreamlandvip (100 Points)
  • DIGISTRUCT (250 Points)
  • EARLYACCESS (500 Points)
  • FIGHT4SANCTUARY (250 Points)
  • FORTNITEXMAYHEM (250 Points)
  • FRESHBOOTY (250 Points)
  • GAMEVIP (100 Points)
  • ITSHERE (1000 Points)
  • LARALOFT-BL3LAUNCH (200 Points)
  • LESSTHANTHREE (250 Points)
  • LOOTLOOTLOOT (250 Points)
  • MYMAIN (250 Points)
  • OVERCLOCKED (250 Points)
  • OVERONEBILLION (250 Points)
  • SEVENDAYS (250 Points)
  • SOHAPPYTOGETHER (250 Points)
  • Unblinkingeye (1000 Points)


Found some more SHiFT and VIP Codes? Post what you've found in the comment section below and help your fellow Vault Hunters out!

Be sure to check out our other Borderlands 3 guides for more tips and tricks. Borderlands 3 is out now on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. 

A December Date Is Set for The Game Awards 2019 Fri, 13 Sep 2019 17:21:16 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

Geoff Keighley, presenter, creator, and producer of The Game Awards, recently announced the air date for this year's award show, which also happens to be its fifth anniversary.

The Game Awards 2019 will take place on December 12 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, though there isn't a time set for it as yet.

The show will stream live on 45 platforms, including Twitch, YouTube, the PlayStation Store, Mixer, and Steam.

Though Keighley was quiet about what this year's show would bring for viewers and attendees — or even who the nominees are — he did say he'll be handing the stage over to a group of "visionary teams" to present their new projects.

Keighley also retweeted a comment by Duncan Jones, director of Rogue Trooper, among other projects, about the agony of waiting to share project announcements. Whether Jones will be part of those visionary teams is, however, still uncertain of course.

In the five years that The Game Awards has been around, it fast became known as much for the actual awards as it did for being where developers would drop surprise announcements or new trailers for highly anticipated games.

For example, one of the 2018 show's bigger surprises was Nintendo introducing Joker from Persona 5 as the first new DLC character for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

As a side note, that's likely why Keighley spoke in Phantom Thieves lingo when confirming Reggie Fils-Aime would be attending this year's presentation, despite the latter's retirement — not because we should expect a surprise Persona 5 Royal for Switch announcement.

That being said, there's no telling what awesomeness will be revealed this year. We'll just have to wait and see. 

Borderlands 3: How to Complete Skag Dog Days Fri, 13 Sep 2019 16:10:48 -0400 Ty Arthur

The long wait is over and fans can finally joy puke their faces off with Borderlands 3, which of course in proper franchise fashion includes utterly insane starter quests like Skag Dog Days. Not quite sure how to pick up those Cactus Fruit and complete this intro quest? 

Turns out Cactus Fruit is wildly resistant to bullets and elemental damage effects like shock, corrode, cryo, and radiation. There's one simple trick to get those fruit to fall free, though, and its easier than you think!

Finding Skag Dog Days Cactus Fruit

         The Big Succ Location.

To find the fruit, just run around the areas marked with the triangle on your map and look for the very obvious red cactus.

The fruit itself is immune to damage, no matter how many bullets you lob at them or special class abilities you use, but they will immediately fall free if you deal even a single point of area effect splash damage.

The easiest way to do that is with The Big Succ gun found inside the trailer marked on the map position above.

Just use the gun's alternate fire mode to lob grenades instead of firing bullets.

If you didn't pick up The Big Succ earlier in the quest (or ran out of grenades or whatever), you can still get the Cactus Fruit to fall free by causing melee splash damage instead.

To go this route, use the the ground pound ability by tapping the crouch button while falling from a distance. Any large rocks near the plants with the Cactus Fruit should be high enough to deal splash damage through the ground pound and knock the fruit loose.

            Using Big Succ grenades to get Cactus Fruit.

It seems like those grenades should really obliterate the fruit, but whatever, we're not going argue the physics of a game that has guns with legs.

What method did you use to cause splash damage and grab your Cactus Fruit? Let us know in the comments, then head over to our other Borderlands 3 guides here after you finish the Skag Dog Days quest!

Borderlands 3: How to Skip Cutscenes Fri, 13 Sep 2019 15:30:42 -0400 Jonathan Moore

Let's face it: with more than a million guns to "pew pew" and worlds to explore outside of Pandora, most of us just want to play Borderlands 3 — desperately. We don't really want to sit through cutscenes. No, we want to skip them, especially the cinematic at the beginning. 

While you might start with one Vault Hunter, you'll certainly want to try all of them since each presents wildly different abilities and playstyles. Thing is, there's the opening movie to sit through.

While gorgeous and fun the first time 'round, watching it a second, third, or fourth time quickly becomes a slog, even if the theme song is a good one.

How to Skip Intro Cutscenes on PS4 and Xbox One

Unfortunately, you can't skip the intro cutscene on console

How to Skip the Intro and Splash Screens on PC

Of course, resourceful PC players have a solution for everything. Follow the steps below to get around the pesky opening cinematic: 

  1. Go to your game files
  2. Look for Borderlands3/OakGames/Content/Movies
  3. Locate the file called Marcus_Intro
  4. Change the file name (it doesn't matter what it's changed to)
    • However, do not delete the file

If you want to skip the splash screens, too, change the "LOGO" files found in the same folder. It won't net you any trophies or achievements, but it will help you get into the game even faster. 

As always, thanks to the great Redditors that continuously figure all of this crazy stuff out. For more tips and trick for Borderlands 3, be sure to check out our growing guides page

Borderlands 3: How to Equip Weapon Trinkets Fri, 13 Sep 2019 13:29:48 -0400 Tobbpitt

Who doesn't want a little trinket hanging off their current flavor of the minute weapon in Borderlands 3? Your vault hunter and weapons can be customized in so many ways, the weapon trinket almost seems paltry but aside from slapping skins on your guns, equipping trinkets is one of the few ways to always see your customization skills at work.

Trinkets don't do anything: literally nothing... Aside from adding a little more flair to your weapons, they have no other use.

Weapon trinkets dangle off the side of the gun you have it equipped to, which is enough for some. It's certainly enough for me.

How to Equip Weapon Trinkets

Equipping a trinket isn't all that different from equipping a skin to your weapon since both have to be done from your inventory. (You can equip a skin just by pressing the Inspect button/key when highlighting a weapon in your inventory. Easy peasy.)

Popping a trinket on your guns isn't much different.

Open your inventory and shuffle your way over to the weapon you want to slap a trinket onto, then press left on your D-pad or what have you — I'm sure this is just done with the arrow keys or something with KBM, though I can't comment — to select the little empty box to the left of the weapon you want to attach a trinket to. Choose one and you're all done.

Equipping a trinket does not consume it, meaning you can equip one trinket across multiple weapons as you play the game (that's right, you can slap that diamond ponytail on every weapon if you want). No harm in making use of them, if you want to give your play a bit more flair.

Weapon trinkets may not mean much to some Borderlands 3 players, but any bit of customization you can see pretty much all the time is A-OK by me.

Green Man Gaming Friday the 13th Sale Slashes Prices on PC Games Fri, 13 Sep 2019 14:38:55 -0400 GS_Staff

From big-budget horror titles to terrifying indie gems, Green Man Gaming is slashing prices on dozens of titles and DLC packs just in time for Friday the 13th. Some are even cut down by as much as 75%.  

Since all good things come in threes, those interested in taking advantage of the sale have three days to do so. Green Man's Friday the 13th horror deals end on September 16. 

While we'll go over the most notable games and DLC packs on sale in the table, alongside their sales prices, notable franchises include Dead Rising, Doom, Layers of Fear, OutlastResident Evil, and The Evil Within.   

Game/DLC Sales Price Original Price
Dead Rising  $5.40 $19.99
Dead Rising 2 $5.40 $19.99
Dead Rising 3 $8.10 $29.99
Dead Rising 4 $13.50 $29.99
Doom (2016) $13.49 $19.99
Doom (1993) $6.75 $14.99
Doom II $2.25 $4.99
Final Doom $2.25 $4.99
Doom 3 $9.00 $19.99
Doom VFR $20.24 $29.99
Dying Light $12.24 $39.99
Dying Light
The Borzak Horde
$6.02 $9.99
Dying Light
Season Pass
$9.18 $29.99
Dead by Daylight $9.00 $19.99
Dying Light
Shattered Bloodline
$3.77 $6.99
Dead by Daylight
Ash vs Evil Dead
$2.69 $4.99
Dead by Daylight
$3.77 $6.99
Dead by Daylight
$3.77 $6.99
Dead by Daylight
A Nightmare on Elm Street
$3.77 $6.99
Dead by Daylight
Darkness Among Us
$3.77 $6.99
Dead by Daylight
$2.69 $4.99
Layers of Fear $3.60 $19.99
Little Nightmares
Complete Edition
$8.10 $29.99
Outlast $2.70 $19.99
Outlast 2 $6.75 $29.99
$1.21 $8.99
Resident Evil 2 (2019) $31.31 $59.99
Resident Evil 2 (2019)
Deluxe Edition
$43.46 $69.99
Resident Evil 7 $13.50 $29.99
Resident Evil 7
Gold Edition
$18.90 $49.99
Resident Evil 6 $6.75 $29.99
Resident Evil 5 $4.50 $19.99
Resident Evil 5
Gold Edition
$6.75 $29.99
Resident Evil Revelations $6.21 $29.99
Resident Evil Revelations 2
Deluxe Edition
$13.50 $29.99
Resident Evil 4 $4.50 $19.99
Resident Evil 0 $7.20 $19.99
Resident Evil HD Remaster $7.20 $19.99
System Shock Enhanced $1.35 $9.99
System Shock 2 $2.25 $9.99
The Evil Within $9.00 $19.99
The Evil Within 2 $27.00 $59.99
The Evil Within
Season Pass
$42.20 $69.98


Those interested in grabbing these sales before they disappear like a promiscuous teenager in a slasher flick can find the full catalog of games over on the Green Man Gaming page here.  

As we get closer to the holiday season, as well as Halloween (which IS a holiday), there are sure to be more and more sales to be had, so be sure to check back at GameSkinny! 

The Pokemon Company Teases Mystery 'Mon for Sword and Shield Fri, 13 Sep 2019 11:13:50 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

The Pokemon Company is teasing another new Pokemon for Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield.

Usually, we get info drops, new trailers, or something like that via press release, Twitter, or a company blog. This time, though, the new Pokemon is presented as a glitched image, rather like the infamous MissingNo from the first generation of Pokemon games, with a brief description that also contains corrupt data.

The description reads: Only _____ that have survived many battles can attain this _____. When this Pokémon's _____ _____ers, it will retire from combat.

The mystery 'mon is a pure Fighting type with the Steadfast ability and weighs in at a whopping 257.9 pounds.

However, many are saying the Pokemon's identity isn't such a mystery after all. Earlier this year, several details leaked about the upcoming Pokemon games that have since proven correct, including Gigantamaxing, PokeCamp, and Team Yell, among other things.

One of the original claims was that Farfetch'd, the quirky, onion-toting bird from Gold and Silver, is getting an evolved form called Sirfetch'd. Sirfetch'd is supposedly a knight-themed Pokemon wielding an onion as a lance.

The Pokemon in the image certainly looks like it could be wielding a lance. Moreover, according to Pokemon historian and Twitter user Dr. Lava's Lost Pokemon, Farfetch'd was originally meant to have an evolution, Madame, a swan-type bird wielding an onion as a sword.

Some are saying this isn't an evolution, but instead a Galarian form of Farfetch'd. We can't say the image shown off really resembles a bird in any way — Shiny Marowak, maybe, but not so much a bird.

Sirfetch'd would have to be wearing a lot of armor (or eat a lot of curry at PokeCamp) to put on that much weight too; the original Farfetch'd is only 30-something pounds, after all.

Additionally, Galarian forms have, so far, kept their original type alongside their new one, even when it doesn't seem to make sense — Galarian Weezing's Poison/Fairy typing, for instance.

We'll know soon enough what the enigmatic ___ wielder is. Meanwhile, be sure to catch up on all the latest Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield news from the recent Nintendo Direct.

How to Become a Trader: A Professions Guide to Red Dead Online Fri, 13 Sep 2019 10:57:16 -0400 Sergey_3847

Rockstar Games has just released a new summer content update for Red Dead Online, titled "Frontier Pursuits." It adds new gameplay elements to the mode, as well as three new professions — Bounty Hunter, Trader, and Collector  which players can pursue to make more money.

Whether you're playing with friends or randos, trading is probably the safest and most profitable jobs in Red Dead's multiplayer (though the other two professions certainly have their merits).

If you are looking take on the role of Trader in Red Dead Online and ultimately maximize your efforts, then follow our tips guide below.

Getting Started as Trader in Red Dead Online

Here are the details for what you need to do to start your business: 

  1. Go to any Post Office 
  2. Collect a Letter from Cripps.
  3. Open the letter and read it.
  4. Open the map and look for a new marker.
  5. Travel to the closest General Store (indicated by the marker).
  6. Purchase the Butcher's Table (15 gold on Xbox One; free on PS4).
  7. Open the map and look for another new marker.
  8. Find a wagon indicated by the marker.
  9. Bring it back to your Camp.

Cripps will now be your partner in trade, which opens the doors for lots of business and money-making opportunities.

Deals, Skills, and Items

After you've become a trader, you can start selling goods that you and Cripps have produced using the Butcher's Table. These are the three basic steps you need to go through to complete a full trading deal:

  1. Get materials: Hunt animals and bring them back to your camp.
  2. Get supplies: You can either buy supplies for $20, or you can start a resupply mission from your camp at no cost.
  3. Produce goods: Give your materials and supplies to Cripps, who will turn them into goods, which you can distribute for money and XP.

When you've managed to produce enough goods, you're ready to start selling and grow your business. It's worth noting that you can make more money by trading to rural clients

It's also worth noting that Traders have special skills and items that will help you make money:

Rewards What They Do
 Stew Pot Camp upgrade. Unlocks stew recipes to boost cores
Hammer A hard-hitting melee weapon
Ingredient Satchel
Store more items in your Ingredients Pouch
Awareness Identify rival Trader wagons at an increased range
Canine Warning Dog warns you when thieves try to raid your camp
Med/Lg Delivery
Upgraded wagons that can hold more goods 
Weapons Locker Store weapons for later use
Lance Knife A knife style only available to Traders
Efficiency Increase the number of usable materials from perfect carcasses
Materials Satchel
Store more items in your Materials Pouch
Hunting Wagon A sturdy capable of carrying multiple carcasses, hides, pelts
Protection Reduce the chance of raids at your camp
Kladruber Horses Distinctive, strong and steady horses


Trading Tips and Tricks

There is a natural progression to this profession. Here are some tips to help you survive in the highly competitive trading business of Red Dead Online:

  • Improve your hunting yields with a Hunting Wagon at Level 10.
  • Improve your Delivery Wagons and sell larger quantities of goods.
  • Improve your Pot Stew to maintain a steady source of food in your camp.
  • Purchase a dog for your camp to protect it from raiders.
  • Raise a white flag in your camp during item drop off.
  • Only do hunting missions. Forget fishing since it's not economical.
  • Hunt Turkeys.
  • Hunt Alligators and Deer.
  • Bring more horses when hunting to carry more animals.


That is all you need to know on how to become a successful Trader in the game, and for more Red Dead Online guides, check out the list below:

Red Dead Online is out now for the PS4 and Xbox One. Players must own Red Dead Redemption 2 to play the online multiplayer/co-op mode. For more on Rockstar's Wild West epic, be sure to head over to our official review.

Gears 5 Campaign Review: Gears Has Never Been Better Fri, 13 Sep 2019 11:39:08 -0400 Mark Delaney

We're still a few days out from handing down our final verdict on the expansive Gears 5 multiplayer suite, but in the meantime, we want to weigh in on the campaign.

Unlike many popular multiplayer games, the Gears series has always attracted a large number of campaign players as well, and that's never felt more justified than it does with Gears 5.

By taking some stunning risks, delivering a better script, and putting on an audiovisual clinic, Gears 5 offers the best campaign in the series. Ever. 

Gears 5's biggest shift  that being its move to Kait as the main protagonist is apparent in all its marketing materials, but that change doesn't come until Act II. Before that, it's JD, Marcus' son and the flawed hero of Gears of War 4who remains the still-imperfect playable character. 

These first few chapters look and feel a lot like what series veterans are used to, even as it still bears the style of The Coalition's more colorful makeover. City streets and corridors re-invite players to the Gears we've had for so long, where you can chainsaw ugly monsters or cut them down from a distance with loads of firepower. After an unsettling story moment at the end of Act II, one that represents this script's best-in-series writing well, the tone abruptly shifts to something that feels quite different.

Kait's saga is the most personal in the series to date, even literally, as we often see inside her own unwell mind. However, it's the best in the series for reasons that go beyond just that introspection. Gears 5 makes a welcome habit out of subverting expectations over and over again throughout the 12-hour campaign.

Moments big and small are upended by surprises, like the ebb and flow of combat and dialogue, which has for so long been metronomic in this and other shooters but now cleverly unravels in Gears 5. Character moments will be interrupted by chaos when you least expect it, while the game lets things breathe more than Gears is known to do.

Gears 5 cares more for its characters, too. Even as many fans were invested in the likes of Dom, Baird, and Marcus in the original trilogy and scoffed at JD, Del, and Kait in 4, the latest in the series does more for all the living characters, both past and present, than ever before. Beneath the bulky exterior, Gears has fully-fledged human beings in its starring roles now. I even got goosebumps a few times. That's new.

The series once dedicated to gravel-voiced testosterone junkies is no longer afraid to cry, and it's a beautiful thing. It's so affecting in Gears 5 that it's made me retroactively care more for the series' earlier narrative shenanigans. 

It's especially daring how Kait is promoted to the starring role, and even more so when you realize she's likely to be the pivotal character in Gears 6, too. I can't think of other series that have pivoted from one hero to the next mid-trilogy like this, and it seems unlikely any similar moves would've been successful. From a storytelling view, it feels unfathomable almost improper that the story could unfold as it does in The Coalition's first two outings as Gears caretakers, but they've nailed it, and I'm excited for what's ahead.

The final scene of Gears 5 has the pitch-perfect summer blockbuster cliffhanger mood they're going for, and I now find myself a bigger fan than ever thanks to Kait's motivation.

It's one of many sweeping changes that The Coalition has made since taking over with Gears of War 4, and the handoff looks even more secure here in Gears 5. New enemy types in basic combat and boss battles are to be expected from any shooter, but the cover-shooting heart of the franchise still doesn't miss a beat. Supplemented with new environmental tactics, like shooting the ice beneath enemies, as well as the returning storm mechanics from 4 make Gears 5 a game that always feels great.

The Coalition's north star seems to be paying homage to what worked before but not fearing big changes. They've made many in this game alone and most of them work well.

A pair of open-world hubs have their ups and downs, though. With one main objective in each of the two areas, players are left to their wind-sailing skiff to explore for more blips on the map. Twelve side missions and some collectibles round out the optional content in total, while the bookend sections surrounding Acts II and III don't offer any similar areas, making the move to open-world feel half-baked.

Stuck between a linear past and a future potentially more vast, Gears 5  feels like a trial run for an even more expansive Gears 6 in a few years, and that move will be a smart one as the side missions are a fun addition to the series. But for now, players may be wondering why they have so few toys for so much sand.

But at least that sand is gorgeous. Environments in Gears 5 make it the best looking Xbox game to date. It instantaneously becomes the new benchmark for their first-party titles and will help usher in the next generation with this pretty of a picture. Act III's red sand screams of The Last Jedi, but Gears makes it work for itself just as memorably. Before that, the crystalline blue tundra helps diversify the battlefield like never before for the once grey-brown franchise.

Character models have always been inflated, though The Coalition slimmed them down a bit when they took over. However, by imbuing the world with a wider color palette and using some amazing lighting effects, Gears 5 is visually flawless, even as sawing Swarm monsters in half doesn't tend to be the most portrait-ready scene.

It also sounds great thanks to awesomely designed audio, including the return of Ramin Djawadi, of Westworld and Game of Thrones fame, as composer. The Coalition has found their sonic soulmate in Djawadi and can't let him out of the building until he scores the finale to this new trilogy.

As this review arrives post-launch, I didn't experience some of the issues reported elsewhere regarding progression bugs, though I did encounter some that required checkpoint restarts. Given how unforgiving the checkpoints often are in Gears 5, those were annoying. Thankfully, they never persisted and some have already been patched out, too.

Still, this is Xbox's biggest game of the year and the flagship launch for its holiday rush Game Pass initiative. It would be silly to say Gears 5 is unpolished since it does so much so impressively, but several of the bugs, like an interact prompt that never seems to work the first time, have the feeling of QA reports deliberately overlooked.

  • Revitalizes the series with a new emotional core
  • Environments are more varied and interesting than ever before
  • Takes big risks in the story and gameplay and most of them pay off
  • Frequently subverts expectations 
  • Some bugs cause annoyances and force restarts
  • Open-world sections feel half-baked

Before Gears of War 4, the series felt like its future was up in the air. For some, that feeling grew stronger after a polarizing debut for The Coalition. 

Gears 5 not only puts that debate to rest, it delivers a new benchmark for Xbox Game Studios. When Master Chief returns next Christmas, it's Gears 5 he'll need to contend with to claim the top spot among Microsoft's first-party campaigns. 

[Note: A copy of Gears 5 was provided by Microsoft for the purpose of this review.]

New Resident Evil: Project Resistance Details Shuffle Out of the Tokyo Game Show Thu, 12 Sep 2019 17:24:02 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

Capcom revealed its latest Resident Evil project, Resident Evil: Project Resistance, just a short while ago, and now we're getting some new gameplay information out of the Tokyo Game Show.

As expected from the initial teaser trailer, Project Resistance is a 4v1 multiplayer survival game. Capcom describes it as an asymmetrical experience, one where every player sees and deals with something different.

That's because one of the players is trying to do the other four in. One player takes on the role of the Mastermind and tries to impede the other players' progress (read: kill them) by taking control of a series of security cameras, directing enemies and weapons, and manipulating the environment — all thanks to a handy deck of cards that grants the Mastermind their power.

On the other hand, each of the four survivors has a unique set of skills they can employ to overcome the Mastermind's traps, and despite players working to survive on their own, Capcom says teamwork will be absolutely vital for making it out alive.

Think of it as the escape room from hell developed by Umbrella.

There's one other pretty big power the Mastermind has, and it's a series first: the Mastermind can control zombies and step into the skin of Mr. X (or Mr. Cross, for those inclined to see it that way.) to confront the other four players.

As of now, we still don't have an official release date for Resident Evil: Project Resistance, but RE Ambassadors and Xbox Insiders get access to a closed beta of the game from October 4 through October 7. No similar access for PC gamers has been announced yet, despite the game being set for a PC launch as well.

NHL 20 Review: Top-End of the Talent Pool Fri, 13 Sep 2019 09:00:01 -0400 RobertPIngram

It's fall, which means it's time for another rollout of EA's NHL series. For fans of the genre, there's good news: NHL 20 is back with an entertaining hockey simulation and a variety of fun ways to play.

With the always-popular Ultimate Team mode, an intuitive and instructive Career Mode, and some pond hockey inspired games to enjoy, there's a little bit of everything waiting for you in this year's edition.

Getting Up to Speed is Easy 

The most important thing about any sports game is how it handles. Clunky controls can drive a player insane and steep learning curves can make it difficult for anyone new to get into the game.

When it comes to converting the minutiae of an entire sport into a single controller, the NHL series is perhaps the biggest challenge EA faces outside of the UFC. With players flying around the ice on skates and wielding their sticks in dynamic fashion, it's important for EA to truly replicate the high-speed feel of elite hockey.

And, thankfully, EA does it with impressive economy. Button and joystick usage is efficient, and the game provides a great deal of creative expression and control with minimal use of the gamepad's functions.

While classic controls that harken to the series' much revered early iterations on the Super Nintendo and SEGA Genesis are available, the game is meant to be played on a modern two-joystick scheme, and it's at its best when you do so.

On a very basic level, your left stick controls your skater while your right stick controls their stick, but what at first seems like a somewhat limited layout actually delivers controls which help you to feel like a true NHL star.

By combining the right stick with a few buttons to modify it, not only do players have full control over the shots they take, but a deep system of dekes and misdirections opens up for skilled players to master.

With a little practice, your next open ice opportunity can see you beat the last man with a spin-o-rama, then fake the goalie out of his pads before nudging the puck past him into the exposed net with the toe of your stick.

If the above sounds rather intimidating and like something you'll never be able to manage, you are in luck. The game includes a Training Camp, which guides you through controlling your players, starting with basics like passing and shooting, before progressing to open-ice dekes and playing the puck between your legs.

The entire process plays out through a series of small tutorials which teach the moves, explain why and when to use them, and has you perform them in a training setting to get them down pat.

As a player who has always been more comfortable relying on the old-school controls of my youth, it got me acclimated and finally modernized in no time at all.

Be a Pro Career Shines

The series' franchise modes are always popular options for players, and the "Be a Pro" mode, in particular, lives up to expectations. While the lack of extras like interviews and apartment building from some of EA's other sports franchises will be seen as a plus by some and an omission by others, what it delivers here is a focus on playing hockey, which is easily strong enough to stand on its own.

When starting your career, you have three options for pre-draft preparations. If you want to jump straight into the league, you can go right to the draft. Those who prefer earning their slot can instead join a CHL side as a teenager and start making a name for themselves.

The Memorial Cup offers a happy compromise of the two, with your pro joining a CHL side for the four-team round-robin tournament, which will see you playing between three and five games before entering the draft.

No matter how you choose to go about your formative years, the experience is a can't miss way to play the game.

Playing in shifts means you can power through your career at a reasonable clip, while the coaching instructions you receive double as a training camp feature by encouraging you to perform certain moves for bonus experience and also showing you how to perform them. Even if you've never played an NHL game before and skip training camp, you'll be feeling like a veteran on the ice after a few games.

World of CHEL Goes Royale

If there's one thing the NHL's stadium series has taught us, it's that hockey fans will always have a special place in their hearts for the game being played in its pickup setting outdoors on a frigid winter's day.

It was only natural that it would find its way into the NHL series, and the expanded role of World of CHEL in NHL 20 shows EA is committed to the concept. While the grind-heavy approach is frustrating, with your character starting out with only a small handful of customization options unlocked in your free starter bag, the gameplay itself is an excellent change of pace from full side games.

Taking a sporting twist to the trendy world of last-man-standing, this year's edition of CHEL includes two different online elimination modes.

In THREES Eliminator, you can pair up with two friends to take on opponents in a rapid-fire series of winner-moves-on-pond hockey. Survive all three rounds and you'll be the kings of the bracket.

Even more fun is the ONES Eliminator option, which cuts the ice in half and places you and two opponents on the ice at the same time, all looking to bang in the most goals before the clock runs out. As in THREES, the winner moves on to the next round until finally, the 81 players who started the game are whittled down to one winner.

Ultimate Team is Back

At this point, the existence of an Ultimate Team mode, where you open packs of cards to cobble together a team logo, uniform, and players, is a given in any EA sports game, but the NHL version is among the best. While there are the usual concerns about the appeal to microtransactions that these modes include, it does offer a variety of ways to play for those opposed to such things. 

In addition to the option to play online seasons to progress through the game's online tiers, there are offline options which allow you to play with and build your team even if you don't like online play. From taking on challenge modes with set objectives to battling against computer-controlled versions of other players' actual HUT squads, there's plenty of Ultimate Team fun to be had without ever venturing online.

  • The game's tutorial and overlay options provide an easy entry for new players without oversimplifying gameplay and harming the top-end of the talent pool
  • New World of CHEL options add even more fun to an already enjoyable side mode
  • Strong "Be a Pro" mode is an absolute pleasure to play
  • Players who have NHL 19 may not feel there is enough new about the latest addition to justify the cost
  • Some mechanics in "Be a Pro," specifically the camera when coming off the bench, can be aggravating and lead to on-the-ice errors
  • The inability to utilize the game's in-depth team creation feature for HUT in order to maintain the unlock-based system of earning real uniforms is disappointing and wasteful

NHL 20 is definitely a strong entry in the larger sports simulation world. For those looking to try a hockey game for the first time, or who have taken a few years off from the series and are ready to get their hands on some new features and updated rosters, this game is a no-brainer. The gameplay is fluid and fun, and the various play styles offer enough variety to more than get your money's worth.

For players who purchased NHL 19 but aren't members of the every-year club, it's a more challenging call. While there are certainly nice elements to the game, and the addition of Elimination modes promises a good time, it's hard to say if that's enough to justify paying full price for an improved version of a game that's only a year old.

If you opt to sit this one out until next year, you'll be missing out, but if you don't mind playing a year behind, you can wait for NHL 21 with the peace of mind knowing that you're missing out on a step forward, not a giant leap.

[Note: A copy of NHL 20 was provided by Electronic Arts for the purpose of this review.]

How Long Does it Take to Beat Gears 5? Thu, 12 Sep 2019 15:23:15 -0400 GS_Staff

The consensus is in: Gears 5 is one hell of a game. Whether you're playing it on Xbox One or PC, you might be wondering how long it takes to beat Gears 5

To answer that question, we asked our reviewer and looked at the website How Long to Beat, which compiles game data from users from around the world. As of this writing, we know that 37 of 52 players have submitted Gears 5 completion data to the site. 

We admit it's not exactly scientific, but the data below will give you an idea of how much time you can expect to spend with the game. 

So how long is it? 

Gears 5 Campaign 

Time: ~11 Hours

The game's campaign is roughly 11 hours long. Our reviewer said that's about right, as it took him around 12 hours to finish things up. 

Gears 5 Campaign + Extras 

Time: ~14 Hours

To complete the main story and what HLtB calls "extras," it takes roughly another three hours, putting your playtime at around 14 hours. Here, extras seem to include things like sidequests and non-story achievements.

Gears 5 Completionist

Time: ~17.5 Hours

For those going for all of the game's achievements, it looks like a completionist run will take around 17.5 hours. Of course, some players will be faster, while others will certainly take longer. It's just a matter of playstyle... 

How Many Acts and Chapters are in Gears 5

Now that you know the game's length, how many Acts and Chapters are in this sequel to Gears 4?  

Here's what we know: There are four acts with a total of 15 chapters

  • Act One has four chapters
  • Act Two has five chapters
  • Act Three has four chapters
  • Act Four has two chapters


In addition to the game's campaign, Horde mode returns with tons of enemies and a cast of characters wielding devastating abilities a la' Champions in Overwatch. That's not to mention other game-lengthening modes such as Escape, Map Builder, and Versus.

Currently, Gears 5 is out on Xbox One and PC. It is available both physically and digitally, and fans can also play it via Game Pass on both of those platforms. It is available for other PC players on Steam.

Gears 5 supports cross-play and cross-save on Xbox One and PC, including Steam. 

Watch Almost 1 Hour of Death Stranding Gameplay in New TGS 2019 Trailer Thu, 12 Sep 2019 16:49:10 -0400 GS_Staff

Nobody really knows what the hell is going on in Death Stranding. Not even Hideo Kojima

That's not to say we don't somewhat "clearer" picture of the game thanks to the brand-new trailer that dropped during the first day of the Tokyo Game Show.

While we'll write a little bit more below to appease the Google gods and connect to some of our other articles on Death Stranding, you really should just stop reading now and watch the trailer at the top of this article. 

While it isn't translated, it does provide one of the most comprehensive looks at the world of Death Stranding to date, including things like hoverboards, harmonicas, and bathing babies. There even seems to be some type of shared world mechanic similar to the message system in the Souls series. 

On top of that, Kojima Productions also shared a seven-and-a-half-minute clip showcasing a portion of Death Stranding's story. A briefing scene between Sam Bridges, Die-Hardman, and Amelie, which seems to occur fairly early on in the game, can be seen below. 

Although Death Stranding is certainly "weird," we ought to simply embrace it and go along for the ride. Indeed, it's hard to argue that Kojima's latest won't be the most unique game we've ever played once we finally get our hands on it. 

Thankfully, we don't have to wait much longer: Death Stranding is set to release on November 8 for the PlayStation 4. The game is currently up for pre-order, and fans can see what's included in each edition of the game here

For more, be sure to check out the 10 hidden messages in Death Stranding's first trailer as there are sure to be dozens, if not hundreds, more in the final product. We know there already are just from these two new trailers alone.

For more, check out the PlayStation Blog's key takeaways

GreedFall Companions Guide: Quests and Romance Thu, 12 Sep 2019 13:42:21 -0400 Jordan Baranowski

You've set sail for Teer Fradee, the new world entirely at your fingertips. What better way to go about colonizing this new world than with your trusty companions by your side? GreedFall, like many RPGs, allows you to set up and outfit a variety of allies who can help you on your journey.

Each companion has a few different sidequests that you can complete to earn bonuses and, if you play your cards right, pick up a romantic partner along the way. Here are the different companions you can fight alongside and whether or not you can start a romance with them.

You'll want to make sure to talk to your companions regularly to unlock their quests and special talents. If you complete all three quests for a companion you can romance, you will then have the option to invite them home with you and start a relationship.

Here's what we know. 


Where Can I Find Her?

You encounter Aphra after you complete the quest "Scholars in the Expedition."

Can I Romance Aphra?

You can only start a relationship with her if you play as a male character. You will get the "Love and Botany" achievement/trophy for being in a relationship with her. 

What are Aphra's Quests and Missions?
  • Islander Knowledge: Unlocks after the quest "The Battle of the Red Spears."
  • Cave of Knowledge: Unlocks shortly after completing her previous quest.
  • The Linking Ritual: Unlocks shortly after completing her previous quest.


Where Can I Find Him?

Kurt joins you almost immediately at the start of the game.

Can I Romance Kurt?

You can only start a relationship with him if you play as a female character. You will get the "Guardian of Love" achievement/trophy for being in a relationship with him. 

What are Kurt's Quests and Missions?
  • Missing in Action: Talk to Kurt after you've spoken with Constantin after your arrival in New Serene.
  • Amongst the Ghosts: Will open shortly after completing his previous quest; a new dialogue option will appear when you speak with Kurt.
  • Settling Scores: Opens after you complete the quest "Treason!" SPOILER: Kurt will survive "Treason!" if you have already completed his other two quests.


Where Can I Find Him?

Head to Theleme and speak with the governor there. Petrus will then join your party.

Can I Romance Petrus?

Petrus is not available as a romance option.

What are Petrus' Quests and Missions?
  • The Vices of the Mother Cardinal: Speak with Petrus after completing the "Old Countries in the New World" quest.
  • Dangerous Bets: Speak with Petrus' father after finishing his first quest. Then talk to Petrus.
  • Sins of Father Petrus: Unlocks shortly after completing his previous quest.


Where Can I Find Her?

Siora joins you shortly after your arrival on Teer Fradee.

Can I Romance Siora?

You can start a relationship with Siora playing as either a male or female character. You will get the "Minundhamen" achievement/trophy for being in a relationship with her. 

What are Siora's Quests and Missions?
  • Find Queen Bladnid: Unlocks after completing "The Battle of the Red Spears."
  • Promises Set in Stone: Unlocks after completing "The Trial of the Waters." Do not accept the bribe that is offered to you as part of the main questline. If you do, Siora will leave the party and not return!
  • The Queen's Farewell: Unlocks shortly after you complete her previous quest.


Where Can I Find Him?

Vasco joins your party immediately after you arrive in Teer Fradee.

Can I Romance Vasco?

Vasco is a romance option for male and female characters alike. You will get the "Love and the Sea" achievement/trophy for being in a relationship with him. 

What are Vasco's Quests and Missions?
  • A Name for a Family: Unlocks immediately after speaking with Constantin when you first arrive at Teer Fradee.
  • Family Reunion: Unlocks shortly after completing the previous quest.
  • Forever a Naut: Unlocks shortly after completing the previous quest.


As you can see, there are four possible romance options in GreedFall, but only three on any given playthrough. You unlock achievements and trophies for each companion whose questline you complete, and they also give you stat bonuses as their opinion of you increases.

Don't fret if a quest doesn't open immediately if the only prerequisite is "complete the previous quest." Sometimes you need to wait until some time has passed in game. Go complete some other sidequests while you wait.

Looking for more on GreedFall? You can read our full, hands-on PC review here to find out if it is worth it before you buy it. GreedFall is currently out on PC, PS4, and Xbox One for $50. 

How to Become a Witch in The Sims 4: Realm of Magic Thu, 12 Sep 2019 11:38:32 -0400 Sergey_3847

The latest content update for The Sims 4, titled Realm of Magic, is out now, and it introduces a brand-new set of spellcasting abilities for your characters. However, not everyone can become a witch in The Sims 4, as this ability can only be acquired by teens, young adults, adults, and elders.

Also, the process of becoming a spellcaster may seem a bit daunting to new players. That's why you can save your time by following a simple step-by-step guide on how to become a witch below.

Step 1: Speak to a Sage in Magic HQ

In order to get to Magic headquarters in The Sims 4, you need to travel through a portal located at the waterfall on the edge of the new Glimmerbrook town.

When you arrive at the Magic HQ, you need to find a sage. There are three of them in the headquarters:

  • Simeon Silversweater: Sage of Practical Magic
  • L. Faba: Sage of Mischief Magic
  • Morgyn Ember: Sage of Untamed Magic

It doesn't matter who you speak to first, as all of them are capable of turning your character into a witch. When you find one of them, follow these steps:

  1. Start a conversation
  2. Introduce yourself
  3. Click on "Friendly Interactions"
  4. Choose "Ask How to Use Magic"
  5. Click on "I was born ready" option in the next menu

Step 2: Collect Magical Orbs

As a result of your conversation with one of the sages, you will be given a task to collect seven magical orbs scattered around the Magic HQ.

Go outside and find all seven orbs; they are very easy to see since the sage will give you a special ability for that purpose.

Go back to the sage and give him the orbs. As a reward, your character will be turned into a witch.


For more The Sims 4 guides, check out the list below:

Get Into Shape and Save the World with Ring Fit Adventure for Nintendo Switch Thu, 12 Sep 2019 10:44:14 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

Nintendo lifted the lid on its latest project that combines quality of life with video games: Ring Fit Adventure, a new interactive game for Nintendo Switch.

It's set for an October 18 release, and it will be $79.99. The package includes the strap, ring, and the game.

Last week, Nintendo teased the game with a trailer showing people using their Joy-Cons in a variety of new ways thanks to a ring accessory and a leg strap. As many expected, and as the trailer made fairly plain, these two devices are the core of the new fitness package.

The ring — officially called the Ring-Con —  senses upper body movement and translates it into in-game action, while the strap, which doesn't get a fancy name, does the same for the lower body.

But Ring Fit Adventure isn't just a Wii Fit reboot. It's a full-blown adventure game with light RPG elements, designed to incorporate light exercise into players' daily routines without going overboard.

The game takes place in an expansive world that's fallen under the tyranny of a bodybuilding dragon called Dragaux (because of course). The player's task is to venture through the game's numerous levels and take on Dragaux's minions before finally facing off against the dragon itself.

Because the idea is to actually move around in real life, players have to jog to run in the game and use the Ring-Con to clear obstacles. Battles are turn-based, where players perform 40 different kinds of Fit Skills to attack enemies and defend themselves.

Fit skills are divided into color categories based on muscle areas — arms, core, and legs — but the fourth, green category is based on yoga movements. Different skill types have greater effect on enemies of the same color, so expect to be doing a lot of moving around during combat.

Outside of the main adventure mode, which Nintendo says is a lengthy one, Ring Fit Adventure also offers a quick play mode. Quick play lets players choose single activities and mini-games they want to engage in or sets of related activities, and they can compete against others as well.

At the end of each activity, the game provides an estimate of how many calories the player burned.

Because Ring Fit Adventure is meant to be enjoyed by everyone, the Ring-Con's sensitivity can be calibrated based on the user's abilities. There's also Silent Mode, which adjusts the level of activity required for those who can't make a lot of noise, like apartment dwellers.

Ring Fit Adventure will require detached Joy-Cons, so it's not something that can be played natively on Nintendo Switch Lite. It's another game that would require an extra set of Joy-Con, though we're currently waiting to hear back from Nintendo about whether Ring Fit Adventure can be played without a TV at all.

GameStop to Close 200 More Locations, Promises Further Reorganization Wed, 11 Sep 2019 15:44:39 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

GameStop's had a rough 2019 so far, and it's getting even rougher.

The Texas-based company released its second quarter financial report yesterday and, as a result of some substantial profit losses, announced during the report conference call it will close up to 200 more stores.

This is on top of the previous job losses we reported on just a few months ago, not to mention the layoffs that recently hit Game Informer, which is owned by GamesStop.

The company's total sales decreased by 14.3% in the second quarter, including a 41% drop in hardware sales, a 5% decrease in software sales, and a 17.5% decrease in pre-owned sales, among other things. All told, it adds up to nearly three times as much profit loss for the company in the second quarter as the first quarter, or $32 million, up from the first quarter's $10.2 million loss.

Before reaffirming the company's commitment to its four new guiding tenets, GameStop CEO George Sherman said:

We are committed to acting with a sense of urgency to address the areas of the business that are critical to achieving long-term success and value creation for all our stakeholders.

We will set GameStop on the correct strategic path and  fully leverage our unique position and brand in the video game industry.

However, Jim Bell, GameStop's CFO, also recognized that the company's second-quarter hardships aren't uncommon during the end-of-console-lifecycle phase.

Nonetheless, it's sparking yet another round of reorganization and plans to close under performing stores to try and stabilize the company's decline.

Mike Futter, who wrote on the story for GameDaily.Biz, believes GameStop is potentially heading in another direction, though, one meant to end in a buyout:

If the current performance continues, that may be what ends up happening, as Niko Analyst Daniel Ahmad reported GameStop's stock tumbled by 15% after the financial report was published.

Still, stock prices don't always determine success, as the drastic drop-off in Nintendo's stocks after Animal Crossing: New Horizons was delayed attests to.

It's always possible GameStop's new plans will be successful, and at least some employees will be able retain their jobs. We'll just have to wait and see.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses DLC Wave 2 Has Arrived, Along with Maddening Mode Wed, 11 Sep 2019 14:01:44 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

As Nintendo promised not too long ago, the second wave of Fire Emblem: Three Houses DLC is available now, and a separate — free — update also introduced the game's version of Lunatic difficulty: Maddening Mode.

This new wave of DLC is part of the Three Houses season pass, and it can't be purchased separately. Those who wish to purchase it will need to shell out $29.99 for the full pass, which will eventually introduce new story content and characters.

Here's what wave two includes:

  • Five new auxiliary battles
  • A new auxiliary BGM track
  • New leisure costumes for most students
  • Glasses for Byleth
  • Four stat-boosting items (which, incidentally, we predicted a while ago)
    • Sacred Galewind Shoes — Movement+2
    • Sacred Floral Robe — HP+7
    • Sacred Snowmelt Drop — Strength+3
    • Sacred Moonstone — Speed+3

The next DLC wave will introduce even more new costumes and some new quests, among other things, and it'll be available sometime before December 31.

In a separate, free update, Nintendo also fulfilled its promise to release Three Houses' ultimate difficulty level: Maddening Mode.

While players are still just getting to grips with the differences in this mode, early impressions suggest Maddening Mode decreases experience gained, increases enemy levels, usually results in enemies getting two hits in one turn, and frequently leads to critical hits — even in the first main battle.

According to Nintendo of America, those who complete Maddening Mode in a new save file — without the benefits of New Game+ carryovers, in other words — will unlock a new main menu image.

Final Fantasy VII Remake's New Trailer: Reno, Rude, Aerith's Dress, and Toads Wed, 11 Sep 2019 10:25:43 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

As promised yesterday, Square Enix dropped Final Fantasy VII Remake's Tokyo Game Show trailer this morning, and it showed off quite a bit of flash, along with some telling character inclusions.

Longtime Final Fantasy fans and those who played the other titles in the FFVII line, like Crisis Core, will immediately notice that Rude, and especially Reno, are getting much more time in the spotlight than they ever had in the original Final Fantasy VII.

Seeing as both played crucial roles in the spinoff titles, it seems Square Enix will be fleshing out FFVII Remake's story by building on events from those titles, which also likely means we can expect a much-expanded conflict between Avalanche and Shinra, too.

It looks like Square Enix also teased some expanded Golden Saucer and final date events, showing off Aerith in a brand-new outfit. Whether that holds true for everyone isn't certain, since Tifa still just gets her black tank-top.

Outside of that, we got a glimpse at some other important antagonists, but also at certain aspects of the battle system. It seems placement on the battefield will affect actions and reactions, with the trailer showing Aerith taking damage after an enemy chucks Cloud back into her.

Despite FFVII's famously darker setting and the remake's further emphasis on that darkness, it will still retain the series' trademark quirk as well. In the middle of a tense battle with bullets flying, Cloud gets hit by a magic blue puff of smoke and turns into a Toad for a while.

Final Fantasy VII Remake is set for a March 3, 2020 release date for PlayStation 4.