News by Britta S., Matt C., and Trent P.
Welcome to Digitally Downloaded’s regular catch-up news feature. With each issue we will bring you the best news that you may have missed. Grab the biggest mug you’ve got, fill it with your favourite brew, and catch up with us (and our favourite news anchor, Dee Dee)!
Swery returns to video games
The developer best known for his work on Deadly Premonition announced via his twitter feed the formation of a new game studio, White Owls Inc. The studio aims to embody the traditional values of good Japanese game design.
DAY437. Finally I opened my own studio “White Owls Inc” in Osaka. I can say “I AM BACK!!”. #whiteowls #SweryIsBackhttps://t.co/SqKZ9Y6Ztr pic.twitter.com/EkEgVtBTAR
— SWERY (Swery65) (@Swery65) January 16, 2017
Swery left Access Games in October of last year after taking a break due to health reasons post release of Microsoft exclusive D4. D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die released on the Xbox One in 2014 with plans to expand the series as an episodic title beyond the original release. However, these plans didn’t come into fruition. At this stage the company has not revealed the game it is working on, though the studio’s website does shed light on further projects from Swery such as a novel, I am Not a Cat, and other VR experimental projects.
Nights of Azure 2 delayed (again)
A press release from Koei Tecmo brought the news of a second delay for Gust’s Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon in Japan. The previously rescheduled February 2017 (from 22 December 2016) release month has now been extended to a general 2017 release window.
According to Gust’s producer Keisuke Kikuchi, more time is required in order to complete the game to a standard that will satisfy the players’ expectations. He apologised for the delay and mentioned that additional bonus features, which will be revealed at a later time alongside the new release date, are planned in acknowledgement of the situation. A similar promise was made at the time of the first delay: the addition of a new Lily (a female companion to the main heroine) and a mechanic that would allow characters to fight in swimsuits.
Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon will be published for PlayStation 4 and PS Vita. A Western release is also planned, but understandably no release information is available yet. In the meantime, read our review of the first Nights of Azure.
Guilty Gear Xrd Rev 2 announced, and Baiken is back
Guilty Gear Xrd: Revelator is getting an update later this year, which will introduce two new characters, Baiken and Answer, among a few other additions and improvements. Baiken is a Guilty Gear stalwart, having been a secret character in the first game and a regular character in every game since, aside from Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN- and Guilty Gear Xrd: Revelator. Answer is a brand new character, nicknamed “The Business Ninja”; he’s a businessman who fights with ninja skills, naturally.
Other changes include balance adjustments, new techniques for existing characters, and new episodes for Jam, Raven, Haehyun, and Dizzy. The arcade version will also get a free-to-play tutorial, and the console version will get new Story Mode content and improvements to online play.
The Rev 2 update will roll out to Japanese arcades in spring this year, with the console update to be released later by way of paid DLC. A standalone PS4 release is also planned for release in Japan, for cheaper than a full-priced game. There’s no word yet on a Western release.
Torment: Tides of Numenera Interactive Quest Video
We brought you news just before Christmas of the sequel to Planescape: Torment. Now developer inXile Entertainment and publisher Techland have released an interactive video for their science-fantasy epic, Torment: Tides of Numenera. It demonstrates how a series of choices allow players to shape their own stories and leave their mark on the game’s world.
The interactive video is 14 minutes long and the voiceover is by the game’s creative lead, Colin McComb, who guides players through the quest, revealing secrets and pointing to subtle details within the world of Numenera. The video plays out like a choose-your-own adventure with the story branching, depending on which choice you go with from the two or three options presented on-screen. Below you can try out the new interactive trailer; note that interactions may not work properly on mobile devices but you can switch on video annotations.
InXile explains their game design concept: “The game emphasizes replayability and reactivity, and your choices will make a real difference. You can play the game with a different approach and discover entirely new pathways. Most important, we won’t tell you how to play. The “best” ending is the one that arises naturally from your actions throughout the game.”
The sidequest shown in the video has seven possible outcomes and provides a tiny taster of the themes, stories, and subplots players will get to experience when the game launches on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on February 28.