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Sony says EA Access Isn't Good Value
Sony Passed on ‘EA Access’; Believes It Isn’t Good Value

Yesterday brought the dramatic announcement that Electronic Arts was entering the subscription business in a platform not unlike PlayStation Plus. Their new service, titled EA Access, will exclusively allow Xbox One gamers to have access to a catalog of Electronic Arts games as long as their subscription is valid. With bonuses like getting demos early and discounts on downloadable content, it’s potentially a formidable service – unless, of course, you’re asking Sony.

The EA Access subscription will cost gamers either $5 per month or $30 for the year, which is great value if the service can provide new EA titles alongside their actual release dates. If they can get EA Sports titles to launch on the service alongside their actual retail release dates, anyone who purchases at least one yearly sports game would save $40 each year by switching to EA Access – and they could download the title from their couch. Even putting the sports games aside, there are plenty of quality Electronic Arts titles up for grabs – it’s just up to EA to actually use them to support the new service.

When Sony was questioned why the EA Access service was available on Xbox One and not PS4, they revealed that this was a choice they made of their own volition – and likely, a choice made to protect the value behind their own PlayStation Plus subscription service:

We evaluated the EA Access subscription offering and decided that it does not bring the kind of value PlayStation customers have come to expect. PlayStation Plus memberships are up more than 200% since the launch of PlayStation 4, which shows that gamers are looking for memberships that offer a multitude of services, across various devices, for one low price. We don’t think asking our fans to pay an additional $5 a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer.

Sony looks to have taken a firm stance regarding EA Access, so PlayStation fans shouldn’t get their hopes up that the service might come over anytime soon. That said, if demand is high enough, Sony might relent and bring the subscription service over to their platform.

EA Access is currently in beta, with participants being allowed to play FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, Peggle 2 and Battlefield 4 through the service. When it finishes the beta, we hope to see plenty of new titles added to the list.

What do you think about EA Access, Ranters? Would you like to see it on the Playstation 4, or are you fine without it?


You can follow John Jacques on Twitter @Makelevi.

Source: GI

Original author: John Jacques
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Destiny Game Size Fears Header Image
Bungie Responds To Concerns Over Size of ‘Destiny’ Locations

Destiny is one of the most hotly anticipated titles of 2014. Lauded from its announcement as a chance to see what a new generation of consoles could offer, Bungie’s epic sci-fi multiplayer shooter was once promised to “rewrite the FPS rulebook.” Activision certainly agreed with that statement. The publisher reached deep into its pockets for the $500 million development and promotion cost, and even predicted that Destiny would become the best-selling new IP in video game history.

Recently, gamers have had their first chance to see whether Destiny has lived up to its, well, destiny. A closed beta ran for pre-order customers last week, comprising of four story levels, four multiplayer maps and one Strike mission. Bungie had put plenty of effort into the beta, seeing it as a “first date” with gamers and the first step towards earning the right to make Destiny into a franchise.

Reaction to the beta has been generally positive. However, some concerns were raised by players, mainly over the size of the game’s locations. The beta took place in an on-Earth section called Old Russia, and Bungie confirmed in a recent Twitch stream that this would be the only playable Earth location in the initial release of the game. With Destiny taking place in four playable locations – Earth, the Moon, Venus and Mars – questions were raised as to whether the beta took place in a quarter of the game’s universe.

Destiny Official Beta Dates

Bungie have been quick to calm these concerns, however. Bungie community manager Eric “Urk” Osborne responded to a NeoGAF thread on the issue of Destiny’s size. “Destiny’s pretty big,” he said. “It’s the biggest game we’ve ever made, by far.” He also called back to Bungie’s history, citing that the developer is “known for making games you can play for months, years, and even decades.”

Osborne also explained that Destiny was set to exceed the “scope and breadth of activities” of previous Bungie titles. “We want Destiny to have super long legs,” he continued. It looks as though Destiny will not only have competitive multiplayer maps and modes as additional content, but co-operative content as well. “We were only ever able to cater to the competitive set,” said Osborne on Halo. “That left a lot of players out in the cold.” Instead, they plan to make Destiny “support every type of player, and all modes with ongoing activities and events.”

Aside from Osborne’s comments, the rumor mill has more to allay fears over the size of Destiny. According to this Reddit thread, based on since-deleted information taken from the game’s beta build, Destiny will have 32 story missions. Although this has not been confirmed officially, that certainly gives players a little to play around with – with additional Strike missions and raids to look forward to as well.  In the meantime, those interested in a look at Destiny post-beta can see this 1080p Xbox One footage.

Destiny will be released on September 9 for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.

Original author: Rob Gordon
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The Last of Us Remastered Launch Trailer
‘The Last of Us’ Voice Cast Talk Movie; ‘Remastered’ Gets Launch Trailer

For weeks now, Naughty Dog developers and Sony fans have been singing the praises of The Last of Us Remastered, the forthcoming current-gen port of the critically acclaimed PlayStation exclusive. However, it isn’t until this week that gamers were finally able to go hands-on with the port to see just how well the game looks and plays on PS4.

To celebrate the release of The Last of Us Remastered, Sony has released a new launch trailer chocked full of the game’s more memorable scenes. More importantly, the trailer serves as further proof that the port is leveraging the power of Sony’s latest console very well.

In a lot of ways, the value of The Last of Us Remastered is not just an opportunity to play this excellent game on a new system, but to hold onto this story and these characters that many hold so near and dear. Sure, there is talk of a Last of Us sequel, but there’s no guarantee a second game will ever get made.

One way that The Last of Us series could live on is through the forthcoming cinematic adaptation that’s in the works at Sony Pictures. At Comic-Con this weekend, Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams revealed she had met with director Sam Raimi to discuss the prospect of joining the film, but that’s about all we know about it so far.

However, now that talk of a Last of Us film has surfaced many have begun grilling the game’s original voice actors, Troy Baker (Joel) and Ashley Johnson (Ellie), as to their feelings about a movie. And, unsurprisingly, both Baker and Johnson think it’s a good idea, provided the filmmakers get it “right.”

For Johnson, the prospect of someone else playing a character she helped bring to life is a bit strange, but she hopes that whoever takes on the role of Ellie at least immerses themselves in the world Naughty Dog has created. Specifically, she wants this actor, be it Maisie Williams or someone else, to have as much love for the property as she does.

“Selfishly, the only requirement I would want is just that they love it as much as I do, which clearly is not going to happen. But to at least have played the game so they know what it was, but who knows if that’s going to happen. I know somebody could do an amazing job with it and I think they will.”

The Last of Us Alternate Ending Joel

Baker, on the other hand, has set a lower bar for The Last of Us filmmakers: he just wants them to “get it.” If they truly understand the source material, than Baker reckons fans should have no problem accepting the film.

“For it to exist in a different form is fantastic and I’m excited to see a different actor’s interpretation of these characters, as long as they get it. I just want them to get it. But I hope they reveal something new about the character that I didn’t think of before as long as it’s true to the story and true to Joel. But yeah, I want to be a clicker. Head. Blown. OFF.”

While we are likely still several years away from a Last of Us feature film, it’s interesting to consider how the original voices and mo-cap actors feel about someone else taking over a role they made their own. In some ways, Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson are Joel and Ellie, but in others they aren’t. However, if Sony casts the right people we suspect fans won’t have a problem accepting new actors in the Joel and Ellie roles.

Do you think Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson should play Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us movie? Are you picking up Remastered?

The Last of Us Remastered is available now for PS4.


Source: IGN

Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina

Original author: Anthony Taormina
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Call of Duty Advanced Warfare Story Trailer
‘Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’ Story Trailer, Special Edition Details

If it wasn’t already clear that Sledgehammer Games was looking to make their mark on the Call of Duty brand with their first outing in the series, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare , then the latest story trailer should do the trick. Laying out the plot from beginning to end, the new footage gives even more of a glimpse at the next-gen visuals and animation, while also providing a first look at hero Jack Mitchell. The video still keeps the exact nature of the game’s villains and heroes somewhat of a mystery, but it’s clear the entire globe will suffer in the battle.

When you build a shooter franchise on armed conflicts spinning the globe, it’s not easy to escalate the stakes from one annual entry to the next. After Black Ops 2 saw the US military turned against itself, Ghosts upped the damage by peppering the Southwestern states with orbital weapon platforms. With Advanced Warfare marking the series’ first undeniable leap to next-gen consoles, Sledgehammer has gone even farther: the event which sets the plot in motion will be a “global terrorist attack” so widespread and dangerous, it plunges the entire world into chaos.

That premise might sound more at home in Team America: World Police than a video game claiming to take its story seriously, but the developers also claim that they have worked with real armed forces and private military companies (PMCs) to ground the story as much as possible. For when the world’s armies are scattered (somehow), it’s Atlas, the world’s largest PMC that comes in to save the day for democracy – for a price.

Players will be dropped into the battle for power and international influence that followed in the role of Jack Mitchell, a contractor for Atlas that has been given new life by their futuristic exosuits (having lost his arm in combat). Unlike many previous games, Advanced Warfare will follow Mitchell alone, with the voice supplied by Troy Baker (and going by the look of his in-game model, his facial performance was captured as well). Fans can be equally thrilled to see the hero entrusted with such a proven actor, and disappointed that for a majority of the game he will be concealed behind the player’s field of view.

On the bright side, the accuracy with which Baker’s face has been recreated in-game is an endorsement of the next-gen character models Sledgehammer has promised; far more impressive than the model of Kevin Spacey, for our money. But whoever is behind the characters of the game, the spectacle and seemingly non-stop explosions confirm that a shift in target console generation won’t be changing the CoD formula too much.

But as successful or promising as the game’s singleplayer campaign may be, it’s the multiplayer that many will look to for a sign of what to expect from the series going forward. Thankfully, OneofSwords has released new details on the special editions of Advanced Warfare, containing details on the Season Pass and unlockable items available in each. Beginning November 4, 2014, players will get to choose between the Atlas Limited Edition, Digital Pro Edition, and Atlas Pro Edition, priced at $79.99, $99.99, and $119.99, respectively.

Each version, including the downloadable Digital Pro Edition, will come equipped with the Atlas Digital Content Pack, which features two new weapons — the Bal-27 AE Assault Rifle and Atlas 45 AE Pistol — as well as a unique Atlas exoskeleton, helmet, player card, and five bonus supply drops that unlock new in-game gear. Players will also be able to upgrade their exoskeleton in the campaign early with new powers and abilities via an extra upgrade token.

What’s more, the collector’s edition versions of the game will include Atlas Gorge; a bonus multiplayer map that reimagines Pipeline, a fan favorite map from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Both the Digital Pro Edition and Atlas Pro Edition will also come with the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Season Pass, which unlocks access to four forthcoming DLC multiplayer map packs.

For those that prefer tangible collectibles, the Atlas Limited Edition and Atlas Pro Edition will come with a unique steelbook case, the game’s official soundtrack, and the Atlas: Advanced Soldier manual — a collection of original concept art and historical and tactical information.

What do you think of the story and visuals seen in the new trailer? Has the singleplayer campaign gotten your attention, or is it the multiplayer or chance to land some souvenirs that has your attention? Sound off in the comments.

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare releases November 4, 2014 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: OneofSwords

Original author: Andrew Dyce
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Space Engineers Gameplay Video
‘Space Engineers’ Gameplay Video and Impressions

Welcome to our regular gameplay impressions and video post where we record our first 10-30 minutes with a new game, and provide some general impressions on that early play through. Today’s game is: Space Engineers from publisher Keen Software House.

Ever since Minecraft burst onto the scene and generated a huge amount of revenue across close to a dozen different platforms, copycat developers have tried their best to duplicate that success. And while some have come close, most Minecraft-ian titles have failed to set themselves apart from the brick-based title in any new and exciting ways.

Space Engineers, on the other hand, looks to be exactly that: a fresh twist on the basic ideas of Minecraft, only blown out to include a world of possibilities. Essentially players are given a blank slate and tasked with building either a space ship or a space station.

Although the tool set, which offers options for large ships or small ships, included with Space Engineers could use some work, as you can see from the video above this is already a polished experience. Moreover, the creation tools allow players to craft any space vessel their heart desires, from Mass Effect‘s Normandy to the massive Nostromo from Aliens.

Alongside a free form creative mode, Space Engineers also includes a more involved survival mode that requires players (flying solo or with friends) mine for minerals and convert those minerals into useable elements before building. At the same time, the player(s) must also contend with disaster situations like meteor storms.

As we mentioned, Space Engineers is already a polished experience, but Keen House Software is continually improving the game’s feature set and creation options. This week they are adding a few additional options to the game including:

Official Dedicated Servers/Hosts (commercial use): Dedicated servers allow players to connect to a third party host, rather than using a player-host, in a peer-to-peer set-up. This feature often results in faster connections and less lag. Merge Blocks, Conversion of Station to Ship: Players can now permanently merge ships and stations of the same block size by using the ‘Merge Block’ feature. When a ship is merged with a station, the ship becomes the station. Stations can also be converted to ships, but the blocks that are partially inside asteroids will be damaged or destroyed. Factions: Players may now create and join factions, determine ownership of blocks, and manage relations between them (hostile/ally); blocks can be shared within factions or with everyone; ownership can be transferred by the owner. Hacking & Breaching: Block ownership is determined by computers, so if players want to take over hostile blocks, they will have to replace the computers that are in these blocks. Steering wheels, wheel controls: Players can now build and control vehicles with the addition of steering wheels and wheel controls. Batteries: The Battery Block enables players to store the energy generated by solar panels or reactors at an efficiency rate of 80%. The time needed for charging depends on the amount of energy available. Pistons: Pistons is a new type of block which allows players to build even more advanced machinery. Antenna Communication: Signals can travel through multiple antennas so players can receive a signal from any distance; broadcasting can be limited by player or by the power of the antenna. Spectator mode: players can now learn from the community’s best by spectating their work.

Although our video only runs 30-minutes, both Game Rant Editor-in-Chief Robert Keyes and myself ended up playing Space Engineers for several hours, trying to create dozens of different ships (big and small) with intricate interiors and weapon systems. We don’t know where exactly Keen is hoping to go with the game, but the potential is certainly there for massive space battles.

Space Engineers Ship Creation

And therein lies Space Engineers’ biggest success: it’s endlessly addictive in much the same way Minecraft is. The game is well worth checking out now, but we can’t wait to see what it looks like when it exits Early Access.

[NOTE: If you enjoy these gameplay videos please like and/or subscribe to our YouTube Channel to let us know you're watching and you want more. We'll keep making them if you keep watching them.]

What do you think of Space Engineers? Does it look like a game for you? Let us know in the comments below.

Space Engineers is available now for $19.99 on Steam


Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina

Original author: Anthony Taormina
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Mass Effect 4 Years Away
BioWare: ‘Mass Effect 4′ is ‘Years Away’, Still in Early Stages of Development

When BioWare gave E3 2014 attendees a brief look at the future of Mass Effect at EA’s Press Conference many were under the assumption that the eventual finished product – potentially titled Mass Effect 4 – would release sometime in 2015. However, a recent presentation from the BioWare developers at Comic-Con 2014 has us seriously doubting that assumption.

For those who may not have heard, the Mass Effect panel at Comic-Con featured a fair amount of juicy reveals about the upcoming game. BioWare confirmed the return of the Mako, revealed that cooperative multiplayer is now a mainstay of the series, and shared a few details about the player character, mainly that he or she will be an N7 operative.

In addition to the more substantial information, however, BioWare also mentioned, albeit in an offhand fashion, that this next Mass Effect game is likely “years away.” More specifically, Producer Mike Gamble confirmed that the game is still in the early stages of development.

While many presumed that Mass Effect 4 might not be as far along as they hoped, the fact that BioWare was only showing concept art for the game and keeping reveals to a minimum should have been a major tip-off. In fact, we were rather surprised to see the 2015 tag at the end of the Mass Effect trailer at E3. We did speculate that BioWare might have meant more details were coming in 2015, but rumors regarding potential release dates and talk of the game being in a playable state had us starting to believe.

Check out the Mako concept demo below (via Escapist):

Now, it seems pretty clear that the journey for Mass Effect 4 is only just beginning. Fans have plenty more to learn about the game, and plenty more to see as well. On the flip side, the fact that BioWare is willing to talk about their game so early suggests they want to include fans in the development process. For example, revealing the Mako’s return so early gives them time to tweak if based on feedback and not just drop the contentious vehicle back into the game willy-nilly.

If the attendees at Comic-Con were any indication, it appears that most of the sour reception to Mass Effect 3‘s ending has worn off, and now fans are looking ahead to the future. It just turns out that future is further away than we thought.

Are you disappointed to learn that Mass Effect 4 is not releasing next year? Would you rather BioWare take their time or do you want this game as soon as possible?


Source: NeoGAF

Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina for more Mass Effect 4 updates.

Original author: Anthony Taormina
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The Walking Dead - Amid the Ruins - Key art with logo
‘The Walking Dead’ Season 2 Episode 4 – ‘Amid the Ruins’ Review

Light-hearted moments don’t come easily to the Walking Dead franchise (the zombie apocalypse kind of dampens the mood), but after nearly two full seasons of death, misery, hardship and more death, Telltale Games breaks the tension a little in The Walking Dead‘s penultimate season 2 episode, ‘Amid the Ruins,’ by including a scene in which Clementine and friends chasing a raccoon around a Civil War museum.

In fact, quite a lot of ’Amid the Ruins’ feels like a breather from the series’ relentless onslaught of unhappiness. After escaping from Carver – although not without casualties – the group reconvenes at Parker’s Run, a Civil War memorial that provides a poignant backdrop for the growing fissures in the group’s leadership. Luke and Kenny continue to verbally duke it out in order to decide who should be in charge, though since one of them is hopelessly irresponsible and the other is mentally unstable it could be argued that neither of them is leadership material.

Despite the loud arguing, Kenny and Luke are not the focus of this episode. Instead, Telltale’s rare talent for drawing together a diverse cast of characters results in ‘Amid the Ruins’ being very much centered on Clementine and the other female characters in the group, who actually now outnumber the men in the group. When placed within the larger context of video games, playing as a female character who has a conversation with another female character about other female characters (plural!) felt positively surreal. Emphasis on “positive.”

The Walking Dead Amid the Ruins screenshot - Clem and Jane

Whereas the previous episode, ‘In Harm’s Way,’ had a narrative that felt very railroaded and linear, ‘Amid the Ruins’ brings back the sense of making decisions that really have weight, not only in further defining Clementine as a character but also in deciding the direction that the plot will take in the future. To be clear, this doesn’t necessarily mean that the decisions made in ‘Amid the Runs’ will heavily influence the outcome of the game (there are only so many variations that Telltale can create), but the player’s words and actions feel like they matter.

Much of the episode is spent in the company of Jane, the lone wolf who joined in the escape from Carver and is wavering between her tried-and-tested self-centered approach and Clementine’s offer of a permanent place within the group. It’s not a one-way street: Jane also espouses the benefits of self-reliance to Clementine, creating an interesting dynamic between the two characters’ worldviews.

Jane’s insistence that other people are a burden is also cleverly woven into Clementine’ interactions with other characters, as even the more likeable members of the group work seem to be making themselves as burdensome as possible. Bonnie pressures Clementine into doing something that nearly gets her killed, Kenny is an angry wreck, Sarah is a traumatized mess and Luke abandons his lookout post and leaves the group wide open to a walker attack. In fact, Clementine is probably the strongest member of the entire group, despite only being a kid.

The Walking Dead - Amid the Ruins - Standoff

The episode isn’t all talk, of course. ‘Amid the Ruins’ has its fair share of action as Jane and Clementine head out on a rescue mission to find Luke and Sarah, who are holed up in a trailer park. This includes a bit of puzzle solving (although it’s the kind of puzzle that kind be solved by just clicking on half a dozen items until you find the right one) and Telltale’s trademark QTE-based combat. Said combat was a little buggy in this episode, with mouse clicks sometimes failing to register and some framerate issues that had deadly results.

The unspoken fate of Christa’s baby hangs heavily over ‘Amid the Ruins’ as Rebecca goes into labor; both the game and the comics have shown, the zombie apocalypse doesn’t show much mercy to babies, and carrying a helpless, screaming bundle around isn’t exactly conducive to survival. It very much ties in with the aforementioned theme of other people as burdens, something that has recurred throughout the series. Who is pulling their weight and who is dragging everyone else down? More importantly, should people who represent a burden be cut loose or picked up and carried?

The crystallization of that theme succeeds in giving ‘Amid the Ruins’ a lot of focus, making it easily the most solid episode of this season so far, if not the best. It also ends with yet another decision designed to leave players regretting their choice, no matter what it was. Don’t be surprised if the season finale gets very messy.


The Walking Dead season two, episode four, ‘Amid the Ruins’ is available now for PC, Mac, PS3, Xbox 360 and iOS.

Our Rating:
4 out of 5

Original author: Hannah Shaw-Williams
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Assassins Creed Unity Window Assassination
‘Assassin’s Creed Unity’ Trailer Introduces Elise, Star of Spin-Off Novel

As October rapidly approaches, the hype surrounding Assassin’s Creed Unity is growing faster than ever. Although the game had an impressive showing at E3 2014 and has hooked many gamers in with the promise of the biggest sandbox the franchise has ever offered, a large portion of the community is still disappointed that the game doesn’t offer a playable female character.

Assassin’s Creed has a history of being ahead of the curve in terms of gender equality and racial diversity, so it was more than a little disappointing for many fans to see the game put such an emphasis on four player co-op, without offering a playable female character model. The new trailer can’t possibly offer answers to all of those complaints, but it does acknowledge that females exist in the Assassin’s Creed world and that they can swing a sword with the best of them.

The new CG trailer may be titled “Arno Master Assassin,” but after a full minute and a half of Arno free-running and stabbing, the focus turns to a new character. At the end of a daring (although seemingly effortless) rescue mission we see that Arno cuts loose a young female prisoner. Before turning back-to-back to face off against the incoming reinforcements, the woman’s Templar necklace is revealed.

Thanks to a press release from Ubisoft, we know that the young Ttemplar is a character named Elise. We don’t yet have any idea why Arno is teaming up with her, but we do know that she will be very important to the game’s story.

“[Elise is] a character central to Assassin’s Creed Unity’s story. As an independent young noblewoman, Elise is determined to secure her place in the Templar dynasty amidst the chaos of the French Revolution. Her quest leads her to cross paths with Arno and establish an unlikely bond with him.”

Not only will Elise be central to the plot of the game, but it has also been confirmed that she will be the lead character in the upcoming spin-off novel. The novel takes place during the same time period as Unity and is told from Elise’s perspective instead of Arno’s. The book is written by Assassin’s Creed veteran Oliver Bowden, so fans of past tie-in stories will know what to expect.

If you think Elise is particularly awesome, you’ll be pleased to hear you can actually pick up a collectible figurine of the character. The statue “features Elise as she sets her sights on her target with her gun poised and sword sheathed at the ready on her back.” Purchasing the figure through Uplay later this year will also give shoppers access to extra digital content. An Arno statue will also be available in one of the game’s collector’s editions.

Do you think the emphasis of Elise as a supporting character helps make up for the lack of a female playable character or is the damage already done on that front? Do you think she may become a playable character in a DLC pack? Let us know in the comments.


Assassin’s Creed Unity releases October 28, 2014 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

Follow Denny on Twitter @The_DFC.

Original author: Denny Connolly
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EA Access Service
EA Launches Xbox One Subscription Service ‘EA Access’

A few years back, Sony unveiled their Instant Game Collection for PlayStation Plus members, further changing the game as far as online subscription services are concerned. Not that long (but still too long) after Microsoft announced its own competitor, Games With Gold. Both services offer “free” games to their subscribers, with new ones swapping in each month, and have fast become an integral part of their respective ecosystems.

Hoping to piggyback off the success of those two offerings, Electronic Arts has today announced their own service called EA Access. The service will be exclusive to the Xbox One (for now), and will give subscribers unfettered access to a special selection of Electronic Arts’ library.

The EA Access service is currently in beta, but it will expand to all users relatively soon. Once the service does exit beta, gamers will have the option of paying $4.99/month or $29.99/year in order to unlock several potentially exciting options.

Like with the Instant Game Collection and Games with Gold, EA Access subscribers will see the most value in The Vault, EA’s curated selection of “free” titles. While it’s unclear whether The Vault will feature a monthly rotation or if it will simply continue to grow, right now the feature includes unlimited access to some of EA’s current-gen titles. Beta participants, for example, can download and play digital copies of FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, Peggle 2, and Battlefield 4 right now.

EA Access Menu Screen

On top of that, EA Access will also include early access (5 days) to game demos for the publisher’s upcoming titles, like Dragon Age: Inquisition or NHL 15. As well, subscribers will receive a 10% discount on all EA-related purchases.

As a whole, the EA Access service sounds like a valiant attempt on Electronic Arts’ part to build their own PlayStation Plus-esque service. However, like with PlayStation Plus, EA Access’ success will ultimately be determined by the quality of the titles included in the service and how regularly EA adds new games. But since the publisher only releases so many games in a year, we could see things starting to run thin really quick.

However, if EA can position the service well, and keep the Access selection well stocked throughout the year, this could be an easy sell, especially for EA Sports fans. We’ll find out how well EA Access performs when it exits beta later this year.

What do you think of EA Access? Does it sound like a service you would subscribe to?


Source: EA

Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina

Original author: Anthony Taormina
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Super Smash Bros Wii U 3DS Paper Mario Stage
‘Paper Mario’ Stage Folds into ‘Super Smash Bros. for 3DS’

One of the most alluring aspects of the Super Smash Bros. franchise is the amalgamation of Nintendo franchises that fills every square micrometer of each and every installment. Whether pitting iconic characters against one another in an all-out brawl or earning an obscure mascot’s trophy, Super Smash Bros. could easily be considered the ultimate fan service for any follower of the Big N.

While there’s an ample amount of representation for various franchises within the games (even Rayman will be appearing as a trophy), one franchise that’s been tragically overlooked up until this point is beloved RPG spin-off Paper Mario.

The latest MiiVerse post from Super Smash Bros. creator Masahiro Sakurai, however, has finally rectified Paper Mario‘s underrepresentation within the fighting game franchise. Sakurai himself confirmed that there will be a dedicated stage for the paper-themed series that’ll debut within the handheld version of the upcoming Smash entry.

Super Smash Bros 3DS Paper Mario Stage

“Pic of the day. For the first time ever in the Super Smash Bros. series, here’s a Paper Mario stage! It’s made of paper, so strong winds will blow it away.” 

While the initial screenshot indicates that Paper Mario: Sticker Star will be one of the games represented by the stage, Sakurai was quick to confirm that other entries in the series will also receive representation – including the GameCube’s Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.

Super Smash Bros 3DS Paper Mario Stage 2

“Since the stage is paper, it transforms when it folds over and opens up again. This ship is the S.S. Flavion from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.” 

This new stage was a long time coming for many fans of both Smash and Paper Mario, and it looks like it will be a fun battleground for mascots to pummel one another on. Further more, it could indicate that a paper version of Mario may be making a playable debut in the new games to accompany the stage, and those who’ve played past entries in the series will know that Sakurai isn’t afraid of placing various versions of the same character on the roster – just look at Toon Link.

What do you think of the new Paper Mario stage? Do you believe it was a long time coming or something that should have been left out of the fold? Let us know in the comments below.


Super Smash Bros. for 3DS hits store shelves on October 3, 2014, while the Wii U version arrives in Holiday 2014.

Follow Riley on Twitter @TheRileyLittle.

Source: Masahiro Sakurai – MiiVerse

Original author: Riley Little
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Hopper Version 3 was released today.  The old Hopper will be discontinued March 8th 2013.  You must upgrade as it will no longer function.

Here are some of the new fetures in Hopper 3:

  • Full Family Bucket Support
  • Performance increase for FireFox users
  • Less memory on all versions
  • Stability improvements, Hopper keeps on going
  • https support
  • New GUI
  • Better logging
  • Ability to run our Beta Hopper on demand