Category: Microsoft

I’m Providing a Valuable Zombie Workout Service

You just don’t realize how much a game means to some people until it goes away. Running Delisted Games has brought all kinds of people to me, usually lamenting the loss of one of the hundreds of games I’ve dug into. It feels good to provide them a page to mourn the loss of a favorite game but sometimes I can go a little deeper.

I really didn’t know how many people regularly used and relied on Xbox Fitness until I got my first Delisted video online. People have been requesting uploads of specific workout and this past weekend I finally got everything recorded that I still have access to. Sadly, it isn’t much but I did get to record the 2-part Zombies workout. Yes, there are even zombies in fitness videos now.

It’s really peculiar. It feels like an FMV game — fitting, as it’s produced by SUMO Digital, the team behind the actual FMV game Intel Discovered — only you don’t have any control over how things happen. Instead, the team of survivors do a typical workout routine for a few minutes and then you repeat the sequences as they rush to a new safe location. It’s really something to see as the cast tries to apply burpees, walking push-ups and high jumps to zombie encounters.

Whether you exercise alongside them or not, those two videos in particular are worth queuing up sometime.

FRU Live Stream is Up

My setup isn’t great for recording Kinect games but they come along so rarely that I’d never tried before. Nevertheless, here’s a quick half hour with FRU!

The Last Great Kinect Game, FRU, is Out Today

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It was E3 2014 when I first saw FRU in action and immediately fell for its mix of 2D platforming and Kinect integration. The bubbly silhouette of your body allows the main character to interact with an alternate version of the world. Your positioning allows the character to access platforms and bypass obstacles. Imagine if your body was the portal in Portal. And it’s finally out on Xbox One today for $14.99 or $10.04 for Gold members.

I will hopefully be streaming it this afternoon but whatever I do get recorded will be up on YouTube shortly after.

E3: Road Rage puts its own spin on Road Rash

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Road Rage was just revealed among Maximum Games’s E3 lineup and may brandish the Road Rash torch even better than the long-in-development Road Redemption (which I’m still waiting to be a finished product). Everything they’ve shown so far is merely target renders and PR copy but it sounds promising and the developer, Team6, has loads of past experience with irreverent vehicle-based antics.

The most important component of a good Road Rash-alike is melee weapons. Road Rage promises “insane weaponry” but so far they’ve shown the requisite bats, chains and pipes alongside the moderately unexpected axe, katana and hockey stick. I mean, a hockey stick is practically the sniper rifle of melee weapons and that’s kinda insane, right?

What’s most promising for me are 42 missions that the PR copy labels as “story-driven” with the promise of open world exploration. In past Road Rash titles there was just enough story to string together a little internal narrative as the races unfolded. I don’t know that I need someone attempting a Fast & Furious caliber storyline but putting meaning to motorcycle-bound knife fights can only be entertaining, either by design or happy accident. See: Torque

Open world is also open to interpretation at this point. The copy promises “56 additional side missions from delivery and escort to combat races and gang brawls” but it doesn’t even mention hidden collectibles which are always a favorite part of mine. It paints a picture in my mind of a small, mostly lifeless cityscape but not everything can be Grand Theft Auto V in scale, especially coming from this small Netherlands based studio. That they even mentioned an open world is enticing enough for me.

Hopefully we see actual gameplay footage by the end of E3 but Road Rage is already planned for a September release so we won’t have to wait too long to see it in action. It’s coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC as well so I expect plenty of terrible “Let’s Play” serieses to pop up by year’s end, maybe even my own. Check out the official site to see a few more target renders and rest assured I’ll post more about it when I see it.

 

 

Microsoft, You’ve Lost Me

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The most depressing part about Microsoft’s decision to close down the legendary Lionhead Studios and the promising Press Play Studios? This quote from Microsoft Europe’s Hanno Lemke:

“These changes are taking effect as Microsoft Studios continues to focus its investment and development on the games and franchises that fans find most exciting and want to play.”

Meaning more Gears, more Halo, more Forza and I guess that’s it. After Quantum Break fails to be the megahit that Microsoft apparently requires it to be Remedy will no doubt be cut loose. Where does this leave Rare with Sea of Thieves and their legacy of middling performance under Microsoft’s banner? What of the Phantom Dust sequel that was almost immediately put out of active development and the already delayed Scalebound?

Abandoning their in-house focus on creative and original games must also mean that they think the ID@Xbox program isn’t the loathsome cavalcade of totally overlooked or subpar releases that it is. This stuff is not picking up the slack for original, unique or inventive Xbox exclusives, guys.

Nearly from the beginning Microsoft has been pulling back on its promises for Xbox One and those cuts have finally made it to the software lineup. With these changes in mind there is almost nothing left that’s exclusive to Xbox for me. Quantum Break, Below and Crackdown are all that hold an inkling of excitement but once those are released (or cancelled) what will be left?

I really did want to love the Xbox like I did last generation but they’ve lost me.