The Last of Us Part II: Capturing Wrapped for Ellie and Joel

Update 4/18: Following yesterday’s update that the final scene for The Last of Us Part II has been shot using performance capture, the last scene with Joel and Ellie is now finished as well, and “the most ambitious cinematic shoot” ever for Naughty Dog has wrapped. Posted by writer and director Neil Druckmann on Twitter, the announcement comes with a picture of Joel actor Troy Baker and Ellie actress Ashley Johnson in their motion capture suits with a champagne flute in hand. Druckmann included the caption “And that’s a wrap on Ellie, Joel, and the most ambitious cinematic shoot we’ve ever done. Tears were shed…” Read the full article…

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: Joker Challenger Pack DLC Review

If there’s one thing that’s become readily apparent with DLC guest fighters appearing in the Super Smash Bros. series, it’s the unreal amount of care and detail put into making them feel right at home in Nintendo’s fighting game. Persona 5’s Joker is no exception. The first of the five planned Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Challenger Packs, which are available for $6 individually or $25 for all five, Joker may seem like an odd duck at first, given that his native JRPG isn’t even available on the Switch (for now?). But between the flashy fighting thief and his bombastic stage, the choice is a surprisingly fitting one. And even if you aren’t familiar with Persona 5, its signature slick design is present and eye-catching in almost every aspect of the Joker content. Read the full article…

Smaller, cheaper Nintendo Switch coming this fall before more powerful version: Nikkei

Nintendo’s rumored cheaper version of the Switch is set to be released this fall, according to a report in Japan’s Nikkei newspaper. As previously reported, the device is said to be smaller and geared around portable play, but Nikkei says it will retain the ability to be hooked up to a TV. A more powerful “next-generation” version with a major redesign is further off, according to today’s report, although it’s not clear from the language whether Nikkei is referring to the enhanced Switch model that The Wall Street Journal has reported is likely to be coming this year. Nikkei’s report largely focuses on the internal culture and future challenges faced by Nintendo. Among other anecdotes, it cites that a major parts supplier for the… Read the full article…

Nintendo Labo director says VR was part of the plan from the beginning

Nintendo Labo VR, the cardboard accessory kit for the Switch, is up against a lot of expectations as the company’s official foray into virtual reality. It’s the fourth installment of the Labo series, which first launched one year ago to mixed reviews. Parents and schools lauded its tactile building experience and programming features as creative educational tools for kids, while some critics dismissed it as a novelty item that lost its fun after the first few plays. But Labo director Tsubasa Sakaguchi is unfazed by the detractors. “We’re not focused on the passive playing experience, but more of the emotion that’s evoked when you create your own controllers and play the games,” he says. “At the end of the day, you have to experience it… Read the full article…

Nintendo eShop Down After Release of Joker in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

The Nintendo Switch eShop is down and experiencing issues following the release of Joker from Persona 5 and the Version 3.0 update for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Nintendo took to Twitter to ensure fans that it is working hard to resolve any issues so everyone has a chance to play as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s first DLC character, Joker. Joker, the Challenger Pack 1, and Version 3.0 were both revealed to be released today just yesterday. In addition to Joker, the Challenger Pack 1 also includes a stage based on Persona 5’s Mementos location and music from the Persona 5 series. Read the full article…

Anno 1800 Review

Once I got over how ugly my budding villages were going to look if I wanted them to be efficient and profitable, Anno 1800 sunk its teeth into me. The hours flew by as I ignored its many automated suggestions that I should step away from the computer for a break. This seventh iteration of the long-running village-management series goes back to its origins, trading in the futuristic setting of the last two entries for the more traditional sails, Schnapps, and sugar cane. The change of setting doesn’t instantly make it better by itself, but it is refreshing and supports a fun real-time strategy game. The complex and satisfying routine in Anno 1800 is built upon the creation and collection of various resources that you need to keep the inhabitants of your island colony happy. It’s a constantly evolving puzzle that plays out on three levels: Production lines, trade routes, Read the full article…

Xbox One does away with discs in new $249 All-Digital Edition

Discs! What are they good for? Well, they’re nice if you don’t want to be tied to an online-only ecosystem. But if you don’t mind that, Microsoft’s latest Xbox One S “All-Digital Edition” might be for you. With no slots to speak of, the console is limited to downloading games to its drive — which is how we’ve been doing it on PC for quite some time. Announced during today’s “Inside Xbox” video presentation, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition — honestly, why not just give it a different letter? — is identical to the existing One S except for, of course, not having a disc slot in the front. The Xbox One X (left) and S (center) are missing this valuable feature exclusive to the All-Digital Edition (right) The impact of the news was lessened somewhat by Sony’s strategically timed tease of its next-generation console, revealing little — but Read the full article…