Medal of Honor is back and on your face

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There’s a new Medal of Honor game coming, but its a VR exclusive. Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond is developed by Respawn Entertainment and Oculus Studios. Gamers with Oculus Rift VR kits that are eager to jump back into WWII will shoot, stab, and soldier their way through three “authentic” acts. First, as a member of the French Resistance, then a regular infantryman in Normandy, and finally a member of a special force taking out a secret German facility. Boots on the ground!

Beyond the shooty bits dressed up with VR frippery like reloading via full hand motions, the game comes with a story gallery featuring interviews with veterans and historical images. Imagine the ending of Band of Brothers, but now two inches from your eyes!

Black Ops 4 reaches its endgame

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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is getting a large update that basically turns the game into a comic book superhero movie. Operation Dark Divide, the final operation update for Black Ops, adds a time-limited Heavy Metal Heroes mode on the Battle Royale Blackout map that features a tank, thrust-jumping, air-ramps, and full starting loadouts. It’s like The Avengers, but with less quips.

The in-game loot crates get more weapons, skins, and trinkets. Regular multiplayer will see one all-new map, along with a reimagined version of the original Black Ops map, Launch. Finally, Tag Der Toten, the last content drop for Zombies mode, will wrap up the Aether storyline.

It’s the last hurrah for Black Ops 4 before the players shift over to this year’s Modern Warfare. Despite that annual schedule, Black Ops 3 received support and new additions for years after launch, so one can hope that Black Ops 4 gets similar consideration.

Code Vein vants to zuck your blood

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You can get Code Vein from Bandai Namco in exchange for some of your tasty blood. Get to TwitchCon in San Diego on September 27th, during the launch of Code Vein, and take part in the Red Cross blood drive that will take place in Gaslamp Square to get a copy of the upcoming JRPG. The publisher recommends that participants register here for the event. The tie between Code Vein’s sexy waifu vampire hunter and donating blood in real life is a stretch at best, but giving blood is always a nice thing to do.

Football Manager’s new goooooaaalll is less waste

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Sega and Sports Interactive are using a new eco-friendly package for retail versions of Football Manager 2020. The reinforced cardboard sleeve and recyclable polyethylene shrink wrap replaces the standard hard plastic case that you see now. The new packaging costs about 30% more than the current boxes, but that difference is partially offset with a reduced cost for shipping and destruction on excess manufacturing. Studio director Miles Jacobson estimates a 20-ton plastic savings over a print run, which would equal a gigantic difference if adopted by the gaming industry.

Going digital reduces a lot more plastic waste, of course, but pundits continue to debate the cost and energy of server farms against the distribution and manufacturing of media. Hit the pitch with your vuvuzela and make yourself heard!

When Red Dead Redemption 2 comes to PC, this is where you’ll buy it

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Rockstar now has its own game client. The Rockstar Games Launcher is the new home for everything Grand Theft Auto, Bully, and Red Dead that the studio has made. It’s not yet known if Rockstar and Take-Two will stop offering future games on Steam, but it would be the smart move to push fans towards their exclusive store.

Download the launcher now and get GTA: San Andreas for free.

Finnish developer Remedy is finally at home with Control’s nightmare power fantasy

, | Game reviews

I couldn’t tell you much about the national character of Finland. Unlike their Scandanavian neighbors, Finns don’t often express themselves in my preferred media of movies and videogames.  Some of the world’s best and boldest filmmakers are from Denmark. Swedes have made some of my favorite videogames, and a couple of my favorite movies. Even Norway has gotten into my head.  But Finland? I’ve seen two Aki Kaurismaki movies and I can’t even remember their names. I just remember concluding Finland is a bleak place with strange ideas about humor. For a sense of the deadpan minimalism of Finnish humor, look at the website for My Summer Car.  Better yet, play My Summer Car, which might be a prank.  

One of my touchstones for Finnish storytelling is a movie called Sauna, historical horror about a joint Finnish/Russian expedition to map the border between the two countries.  It sounds like an oddly specific subject if you don’t appreciate Finland’s fraught history with Russia, especially during the 20th century. This fraught history is why Finland is one of two countries whose name is also a verb (Vietnam being the other).  Finlandization means trying to not get swallowed by a hungry, vast, ruthless, bureaucratic nightmare crouched right next to you. The geopolitical equivalent of standing completely still and hoping the T-Rex doesn’t see you. So perhaps it’s a matter of national character that Control is a horror story about a hungry, vast, ruthless, bureaucratic nightmare.

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Do you even Nintendo Ring Fit bro?

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Ring Fit Adventure is a roleplaying game for the Nintendo Switch that uses a flexible “Ring-Con” accessory to translate the player’s exercises into in-game actions. See that mountain over there? You can run to it. No, really. Run! Drago, the bodybuilder dragon, is the main baddie, so the player will need to level up and rack big gains by yoga posing, jogging, flexing, and squeezing their way to victory.

Ring Fit Adventure will he available on October 18th. For $80, you’ll get the Ring-Con accessory, a strap to tie a Switch controller to your leg, and the game.

Nintendo isn’t fooling around with pirates

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Nintendo of America has filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against RomUniverse, a site that offers members downloads of pirated media, including Nintendo games. According to the California court filing, members of RomUniverse paid $30 a year to download Nintendo Switch and 3DS ROMs. Nintendo claims the files were downloaded hundreds of thousands of times. The publisher seeks $150,000 for each copyright infringement, and $2 million for each trademark violation. It’s at least a jillion Pokemon Go coins.

“The best romsite in the universe.”

Last year, Nintendo won its case against the owners of similar pirate sites LoveROMs.com and LoveRETRO.co with a $12 million judgment.

There has to be a finger licking joke in this KFC game

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Yes, that’s a sexy anime Colonel Sanders. You’re looking at an image from I Love You, Colonel Sanders! A Finger Lickin’ Good Dating Simulator. It’s coming to Steam and it’s being developed by Psyop. The game will feature all the visual novel trappings the genre thrives on, with the addition of a steamy hot Harland Sanders.

Children of Morta isn’t just an effective and borderline twee action RPG. It’s a sentence.

, | Game reviews

The elevator pitch for Children of Morta isn’t exactly encouraging.  A pixel-art action RPG. From the creators of nothing you’ve played, because I’m pretty sure you didn’t play Shadow Blade or Garshasp.  Hold on, let me make sure I spelled that right. Yep. Garshasp.  

You can see a screenshot up there of Children of Morta in action. Like I said, not exactly encouraging.  It doesn’t help that Steam is lousy with these things.  

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Just one more turn… In Excel.

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Your eyes do not deceive you. That is a rough, but highly impressive, version of Sid Meier’s Civilization made in Microsoft Excel. Programmer s0lly made the diversion as his entry in the OLC CodeJam 2019. You can’t move through the eras. There isn’t any diplomacy. It has no AI opponents. The “countries” are limited to red and blue. For all that it’s missing, it’s still better than fighting with VLOOKUP.

Get [CELL]ivization for free here.