Microsoft’s Games With Gold program, in which Xbox Live Gold (XBLG) members are given one Xbox One and two Xbox 360 games each month as part of their subscription, is …
Today at its pre-E3 press conference, Electronic Arts showed off Unravel, a puzzle-platformer from indie developer Coldwood.
Yarny, the game’s protagonist, is a diminutive character who seems destined to forever be described as a yarn version of LittleBigPlanet‘s Sackboy. Yarny is made of a single thread of twine that, as the game’s title implies, unravels as players progress through Northern Scandinavian levels.
In the gameplay trailer below, the little guy uses his own body’s twine to swing and climb through the game world and even to catch a ride on a flying kite. Throughout Unraveled, players will have to manage the fact that Yarny is constantly unraveling when moving. That means they’ll have to think carefully about what paths they should take and how they can best use the trailing twine to solve puzzles.
The team behind last year’s Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons has started a new studio called Hazelight, headed by the Brothers director Josef Fares. Electronic Arts is publishing their first game, teased in the screenshot above. It does not yet have a title.
Fares’ success with Brothers came after many successful works in film. “Movies are a great way of telling a story,” he says, “but the potential of interactive storytelling through games is even greater.” After the emotional journey that Brothers was, he has a point.
When inquired, Hazelight told us “We are not at AAA level budget-wise. We are a comparably small team in the area of 20-25 employees.” In other words, they are right up our alley. Check out the teaser for their new game below.
In the eight months immediately following the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One launches in November of 2013, Sony, riding high on major public relations victories over Microsoft, led next-gen console sales by a supposed margin of nearly two to one. Despite selling at a pace much quicker than the last-gen-market-leading Xbox 360 did during the same point in its life cycle, the Xbox One was lagging far behind the PlayStation 4 in market share.
So Microsoft made some changes.
Executives Don Mattrick and Marc Whitten left the company. Phil Spencer took over as the head of the Xbox team. Kinect was unbundled from the console. Larger multimedia initiatives were cut entirely or made ancillary in favor of a focus on gaming first and foremost. Finally, the Xbox One’s price was temporarily (for the holidays) dropped to $350 with a $60 retail game bundled in.
Those maneuvers seem to be paying off, as data reporting firm InfoScout found that the Xbox One enjoyed a Black Friday sales lead of 22 percent over the PlayStation 4, according to data compiled from more than 180,000 sales receipts. InfoScout followed up by conducting a survey of 350 consumers who purchased a console on Black Friday, and found that 71 percent of Xbox One buyers cited cost as a major influence on their purchase. Comparatively, just 48 percent of PlayStation 4 buyers surveyed indicated that price played a major role in their purchase decision.
Peggle 2 is getting a blast from the past in its newest DLC, as an original Peggle Master makes his debut in the sequel. Extreme gopher Jimmy Lightning has returned, bringing with him his improved Multiball Power. Hitting a green peg spawns a second ball, making it easier to clear the board with double the peg-popping potential. The pack also contains 10 new levels, 10 trials, 30 objectives, 3 costumes, and 3 achievements. Jimmy Lightning’s Master Pack is available now on Xbox One for $1.99. Check out some radical screenshots after the jump.
Xbox 360 owners who have not yet thrown down money for a Xbox One will be able to get their hands on the newest Peggle game in the coming months. EA and PopCap Games have announced Peggle 2 will release on Xbox 360 on May 7 in North America and Europe. The release date comes alongside news of the Xbox One version receiving a free update that inserts Duel Mode into the game which is available now.
Peggle 2 brings the utterly wacky style and addictive fun from the original game to the Xbox One. While our full review won’t be up for a couple more …