Black Ops 4 ditched the single player campaign that has been a hallmark of the series. Instead, the game focuses entirely on multiplayer action, including a mode called “Blackout,” which follows the same Battle Royale rules found in Fortnite. (Players are dropped into an ever-shrinking area, where the last one alive wins the game.) The strategy seems to be working. Earlier this week, Activision announced digital sales of Black Ops 4 made $500 Million in sales in 3 days and had set a company record, as well as sales records on both the Sony PlayStation and Microsoft Xbox digital storefronts.
On Microsoft’s E3 stage, the gaming giant announced the founding of a new internal first-party studio called The Initiative, which was created to make prestige games for Microsoft’s platforms. Now, the new studio has reportedly hired veteran Rockstar Games technical director Tom Shepherd to join The Initiative. Shepherd has been working at Rockstar for a number of years and has Red Dead Redemption, Max Payne 3, Grand Theft Auto V, and more under his belt, which is a pretty impressive resume.
A special achievement in ‘The Stanley Parable’ has lain dormant for five years, just waiting for players to finally earn it.
Five years ago, The Stanley Parable released on Steam and blew minds. It’s a game where players take control of an office worker and live out a day in their life. As the game progresses, the narrator comments on the choices the player makes. Replaying the game and making different choices changes the narration, and since there are so many different choices to make, it’s well worth it to replay the game multiple times to get some funny, sharp commentary about how game designers think about “player choice” in video games and free will more broadly.
The horror genre is incredibly varied. Slashers, psychological thrillers and creature features all have their own clichés and tropes. Still, from the campy spectacle of American Horror Story to the atmospheric slow burn of A Quiet Place, all horror promises to do one thing: scare the crap out of you.
Nowhere does the horror genre live up to that promise more fully than through video games. Rather than watching someone maneuver a terrifying environment (and yelling at them to avoid obvious traps), you are tasked with making agonizing decisions, running from threats and, ultimately, staying alive.