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Tag: Assassin's Creed (1-5 of 5)

Burning questions about 'Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor,' answered

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The world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings hasn’t left the same mark on the video game medium that it has in film, though many attempts have been made. The Battle for Middle-earth strategy games? Good, but the series lasted for only a few years. The Rings Lego games? Also fun, but the Middle-earth setting is just one of several major properties to be Legoized. Even the games connected to the original trilogy films have their upsides but were never critical darlings.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor hopes to change that. The game has received plenty of buzz leading up to its release on Sept. 30, promising an original story in Tolkien’s world that explores the deep lore while innovating on familiar gameplay mechanics.

So what exactly sets this adventure apart, and will it make Mordor the one game to rule them all—or at least rule the fall season? That question will be answered when the game debuts later this month, but there are plenty more worth asking about why Mordor is worth Rings fans’—and newcomers’—time. Here are answers to some swirling questions about the game, which should give players all they need to know going into the game’s launch.

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'Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag' review: Yo, ho, ho and a bottle of fun

Last year’s Assassin’s Creed III forced fans of Ubisoft’s throat-slitting series to slog through several hours of tutorial-heavy handholding before they could dig their blades into the best parts of the game. Within seconds of firing up Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, those same fans will pilot a pirate ship through a wicked storm while unleashing broadsides and exploding barrels at swarms of enemy craft; moments after surviving this cinema-rivaling opening, they’ll swim through its fiery aftermath, engage in a free-running foot chase through a breathtaking Caribbean jungle, and filet a foe from behind dual swords. Spoiler alert: Black Flag is a better game than Assassin’s Creed III.

While last year’s entry was by no means bad, its many ambitious parts — from the appealing American Revolution setting to the innovative naval combat — ultimately amounted to an unsatisfying sum. Black Flag doesn’t trump its predecessor in terms of introducing fresh features, but it easily upstages Connor Kenway’s chapter by forgoing over-reaching ambitions in favor of setting its spyglass on unbridled, swashbuckling fun.
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The most exciting games at E3 2013...and everything that might be wrong with them

This year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) marked an exciting moment for the videogame industry. New consoles. New blockbuster titles. Long-awaited sequels. What follows is a list of the 15 most exciting games I saw this year. I got hands-on time with most of them, but it’s important to remember that playing videogames at E3 is not the same as actually playing the videogames. At E3, you’re staring at the most expensive TV screens corporate money can buy, while various company reps urge you on and assure you that you’re much better at the game than all of the other journalists they’ve seen that day. (One developer assured me I was doing great after I died for the fifth time in two minutes.) With that in mind, each of these games comes with an addendum: What could go wrong between now and when the game is actually released?

15. Killzone: Shadow Fall
The franchise about futuristic space dudes with futuristic space guns gets a next-gen makeover. I’ve never been a Killzone fan. In fact, I couldn’t pick out the first three games from a lineup of futuristic-space-gun shooters. But the level I played through offered a fascinating array of possible tactical decisions. Also, this was The Year of the Ziplines at E3, and Shadow Fall lets you fire a zipline anywhere you want. (Playstation 4, End of 2013)
What Could Go Wrong: The title Killzone: Shadow Fall sounds like a straightfaced parody of a contemporary futuristic-space-gun videogame, and what little I could glean of the plot sounded like boilerplate from the post-Gears of War era.

14. Mariokart 8
After many months of hype and rumors, Nintendo’s biggest franchises were mostly no-shows at this year’s E3 — unless you consider an HD remake of an old Zelda game a new development (it isn’t) or you think Super Mario 3D Land is even close to Super Mario Galaxy (it ain’t.) But the new Mariokart offers some intriguing twists on the two-decade-old formula, with the ability to drive on walls. Also, the levels are so pretty in HD. (Wii U, Spring 2014).
What Could Go Wrong: It’s the same old Mariokart, except this time it’s on a console you still don’t feel like buying.
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'Assassin's Creed IV' trailer: Boats, babes, and beards

I know what you’re thinking: the last Assassin’s Creed just came out! Well, just as developer Ubisoft promised, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag appears to be a departure from the tangled technological-mystical web woven by previous entries in the series.

In the two minutes of released footage (all almost-uncanny CGI images) we see a cranky old pirate/Blackbeard lecture a room of younger pirates about the scariest seafarer he’s ever known: Captain Edward Kenway, a familiar-looking monk/warrior who murders and saunters about murderously. For a few seconds, a bed of naked wenches smile at him as he heads off to his grisly work.

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First image from 'Assassin's Creed IV': Yo ho ho and a bottle of KILL

The Assassin’s Creed franchise has adopted an annual-release model the last few years, presenting gamers with a new opportunity every fall to jump across the rooftops of their favorite densely-researched historical cityscapes. But last year’s Assassin’s Creed 3 seemed to mark a turning point for the franchise. We don’t know much about the next entry, but Ubisoft just released an evocative bit of key art which reveals two things: 1. The name of the game, and 2. A very rough idea of the setting. Take a look: READ FULL STORY

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