Some of The Greatest Games to Look Forward to in 2018

Some of The Greatest Games to Look Forward to in 2018

Some of The Greatest Games to Look Forward to in 2018

Icarus

There are (as always) literally dozens, if not hundreds, of new video games that we can expect to see each year, but the further we get into the year more and more information is being released. As such, gamers have finally been able to obtain a better idea of what we can actually expect to see and are finally allowed to get beyond the hype surrounding a particular studio or franchise name. Here are some of the greatest video games that the gamers here at iGeekOut are looking forward to getting our hands on.

Kingdom Hearts III

I nearly cried when I found out this sequel was announced, and I wasn’t the only one. Although there have been numerous spin-offs and remakes, it’s been nearly 13 years since the sequel to Kingdom Hearts II was announced. With a unique cast comprised of both Final Fantasy and Disney characters, Kingdom Hearts has made a lasting impression on many video game enthusiasts. Plus, from Traverse Town to Big Hero 6’s San Fransokyo there will be plenty to interact with. We can’t wait to kick off the next chapter with Sora, Donald, and Goofy.

Far Cry 5

From a tropical island between the Indian and Pacific to the Himalayan Mountains, and even the Stone Age, Ubisoft seems determined to take us all over the place in their Far Cry games. Now, it looks like Ubisoft has shifted their sights to Montana. Except this time, we’re dropped into a civil war sparked by a doomsday prepping cult. There’s plenty of characters to recruit and action to go around. Just make sure you watch out for the bear.

A Way Out

Not too long ago, playing a game with some of your friends on the same screen was the norm. Now, it seems the emphasis lies within enhancing the single-player experience, and even if there is any cooperative action, it’s rare it’d be with anyone in the same room. That is, until A Way Out. Although it hasn’t been confirmed if local co-op will be featured, A Way Out is unique in that it requires cooperation between you and another player. At the very least, you and another online player work together to break out of prison.  This opens up the way for a whole bunch of possibilities. One player could be keep a lookout for prison guards and the other need to gather any necessary escape tools. Hopefully, this brings back some of cooperative gameplay that a lot of us have been itching for.

Biomutant

Playing as creature who evolves to have different abilities and strength the more you explore, Biomutant looks to be a game trying to shake up the open-world action RPG genre.  Guns, swords, and kung-fu help make Biomutant look like the oriental open-world action RPG we never knew we wanted. An engaging story, beautiful graphics, and fluid combat system all demonstrate just how much potential this game has really shake up modern RPGs. Then there’s the unique levelling system. Although the specifics are a little hazy, the trailer suggests that the player’s avatar changes as levelling choices are made. Faster speed might result in longer legs, more health could be a tankier build, the list goes on. At the very least, Biomutant looks like it’ll be pretty great.

We Happy Few

We Happy Few seems be the latest addition to morality-based games like the Bioshock series. The player tries to escape an dystopian society set in a retro-futuristic London setting. Just like there were many points within Bioshock that had no clear right or wrong, We Happy Few seems to excel in presenting a multitude of moral dilemmas for the player to solve. Giving in to societal pressure and taking your “happy”, an artificial drug used for suppression, allows the player to fit into society easier and become less of a target. However, the world then becomes distorted and lulls the player into a false, even dangerous, sense of security. The opposite is also true. Not taking your “happy” can attract unwanted hostility, but helps the player see the world as it really is. The trick is maintaining the right balance and making the right choices as you try to escape.

Code Vein

In Code Vein, unique enemies, overly-flashy moves, and gigantic bosses all come together in this gift that is part anime and part Dark Souls. Known for its difficulty, Dark Souls tries to push its players to the max and Code Vein seems no different. Strategic thinking, quick reflexes, and grit are what you’ll need to get through this beautifully designed game. One of the most interesting differences however, is your AI companion Mia. She can help you in a myriad of ways such as distracting the enemy so you have the chance to send off a spell, take some time to heal, or get in a few hits of your own. But perhaps the most interesting is the fact that Mia can revive the player even after he or she has gone down. That’s pretty significant. Regardless, I can’t wait until this game releases so I can get my fix of difficult dungeon crawling.

Anthem

Anthem is by far one of the most anticipated games for the near future. Although EA hasn’t had much luck with recent games such as Star Wars Battlefront II or Mass Effect: Andromeda, we know they’re quite capable of making incredible games. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic comes to mind. If the game is anywhere near what the trailer promises, we’ll have an immense world to explore, perfectly customizable mech suits, and hundreds worth of gameplay to enjoy. From the silky-smooth gameplay, ability to play with your friends, and sheer amount of potential the trailer alone provides, it’s not hard to see why players can’t wait for this game to come out.

Red Dead Redemption 2

The fact that this is a Red Dead Redemption title should say everything there is to consider about this game. But if you’re unfamiliar with the first game, much of the gaming community agreed Red Dead Redemption was an epic American Western classic. Similar to how Skyrim brought a refreshing take on action-adventure fantasy games, Red Dead Redemption marked itself among the very best of its genre. Capturing outlaws, bringing order to the Wild West, or becoming a desperado yourself were what Red Dead Redemption did best. It made the player feel as if they were John Marston (the main character). And that is the mark of a truly excellent game.

Sea of Thieves

If there is a genre that has ever struggled to find a stable market, I would dare say it would be pirates. At the very least, that’s true for video games. I mean, try to name another decent pirate game that’s come out in the last 20 years besides Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag and The Secret of Monkey Island. Sea of Thieves looks like it could be a game that will be remembered. In fact, with its unique animation, expansive world to explore, and interesting characters, Sea of Thieves looks to reignite some interest in the genre.  Here’s to hoping it works.

Nine Items Your Tabletop Character Should Always Carry

Nine Items Your Tabletop Character Should Always Carry

Nine Items Your Tabletop Character Should Always Carry

Icarus

Creative thinking can lead to some of the greatest moments in a player’s tabletop roleplaying game career. Ask any long-time player and they can tell you story after story of ingenious ideas and their crazy outcomes. Thinking outside the box on how a spell can be used or using an item in an unconventional way can lead to some truly spectacular results and even better, help the players feel like the heroes they’re playing! Although there is a lot to track, such as abilities, allies, story progression, and a million other things, here are nine items guaranteed to prove their usefulness in any campaign.

Marbles/Caltrops

Whether you just found out the cellar rats weren’t quite as small as you were told, or a being just a little late in stopping the cultist leader from summoning the all-powerful demon, sometimes fighting just isn’t an option. That’s when someone emptying a bag of marbles or scattering some caltrops could prove very useful. They can cause enemies to fall, maybe take some damage, but no matter what, they’ll do exactly what you need most. Buy some time so you and the party can “tactically retreat” and rethink how you’re going to do this.

Box of Matches

As simple as starting the campfire after a day’s travels to burning down the bad guy’s lair. I doubt you would be surprised how much one match can light on fire. Often however, stealth is key. Although a normal torch can certainly light other objects on fire, it’s pretty to notice. One might suggest using a magic item but ultimately, who wants to reduce their wand of fireball to what is essentially a lighter. A box of matches is cheap, easy to carry, and can be used by anyone.

Chalk

There’s lots of great things about chalk. It comes a lot of colors, is extremely cheap, comes in a bunch of colors, and can be used to draw on nearly anything. Probably the most obvious use is for scouting ahead and finding a safe path for the rest of the party. Especially if there are some who aren’t quite as agile or quiet as the party rogue. Coming up with a simple color code is a snap and can even add a depth of flavor that sometimes is absent in dungeon crawling.

Mirror

For those of you who may not know, there are a lot of things that could do some nasty damage just by looking into their eyes. Basilisks and Medusas can easily overwhelm an adventuring party if they’re not careful. Regardless of genre, a mirror on handle used to look around a corner could prove the difference between a stab in the back or success.

Leather Pouches

Along your travels, you’re bound to collect different knick-knacks and trinkets of different kinds. Whether it be an extra measure of rope, tools of the trade, weapons, or simply extra storage space, a leather pouch can be attached to nearly anything including pant legs, backpacks, or animal companions.

Along the same vein of extra vials and bottles, leather pouches can prove invaluable for a number of reasons.

Blanket

There are so many uses for blankets. Besides providing warmth, they can be used for an impromptu torch, handling hazardous material, poor-man’s disguise, rope for tying objects together, emergency shelter, and even in extreme cases, a weapon. Although certainly not optimal in nearly any situation, a blanket’s near universal utility makes it a necessary item in the pack.

Manacles

One important moment each player group eventually realizes, not every enemy needs to be killed. In some cases, it is advantageous to capture enemies. Maybe the captured enemy can tell the party some useful information, used as an enemy interest, or lead them to previously inaccessible areas. The trick is, there aren’t a lot of enemies who will generally turn coat just because they were beat in a single fight. Less, if they’re dead. A simple solution is to carry a pair of handcuffs. They make it hard to get away unnoticed, fight you, or generally being uncooperative.

Paper

One word. Notes. Not only is important for a player to take notes on the world and story they’re playing, but player characters also should have a collection of paper to use. At the very least, something the character can use to take notes of the world around them. This can be useful for identifying obscure glyphs, storing important paperwork, and general information collected from journals, scrolls, etc. It’s one small thing that pays for itself over the course of a campaign.

Knife

I’m not talking about a dagger. Instead, use a solid survival knife to split kindling, shimmy open a door, pry open compartments, cut rope, or scratch signals in a tunnel. They’re small and having a designated, normal knife will make sure all your other weapons stay in tip top condition.

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Seven Tabletops to Try Next Game Night

Seven Tabletops to Try Next Game Night

Seven Tabletops to Try Next Game Night

Icarus

Dungeons and Dragons is great and all, but even the most devoted players need a break once in a while. Here are a couple of ideas for different games you can run on your next game night. Who knows? Maybe you’ll even extend it for another night or two.

Shadowrun

One could say that if classic Dungeons and Dragons is to medieval fantasy then Shadowrun would be the same but set in the near future. Shadowrun is an excellent blend of guns, magic, and cyberpunk. Let me tell you, it’s pretty to mow down an undead dragon with your grenade launching dwarf, drone-building elf, and dual pistol human wizard. It’s similar quite a bit to traditional Dungeons and Dragons in both rules and worldbuilding, which makes it a common starting point for branching out into other tabletop roleplaying games.

Call of Cthulhu

H.P. Lovecraft is well loved by many horror enthusiasts. Call of Cthulhu is great at both building suspense and making the players doubt any decisions they make. Although the rule system isn’t as intuitive as others, Call of Cthulhu more than makes it up in the intricate lore, immersive setting, spine-tingling tension. The best part is when you spend the night trying help your friends escape your worst nightmare only to find out that you’ve really been setting yourself up as the ritual sacrifice for bringing back an ancient squid god. Just saying.

Star Wars

Combine the fact that Star Wars has perhaps one of the largest fanbases of any fandom and the already established lore, you have the near perfect recipe for a great night. I mean who wouldn’t want to be a giant raging Wookie like Chewbacca, smooth-talking smuggler like Han Solo, or a Force-wielding Jedi. Maybe you even want a taste of the dark side. There’s plenty of options like playing a stormtrooper, bounty hunter, or the legendary Sith. There are hundreds of planets, starships, and trading posts that could be travelled, and so many races, classes, and backgrounds, you’re bound to keep coming back time and again.

Pathfinder

Dungeons and Dragons isn’t the only fantasy tabletop RPG on the market. While considered to some to be an improvement to D&D 3.5 (a version already highly regarded to many in the community), one of the greatest highlights is how customizable a character’s options truly are. With so many options, it can get a little easy to be overwhelmed with all the rules. On the bright side, the system itself is so generic that nearly any player, whether old or new, can pick it up with some time and make it a great night.

Mutants & Masterminds

Superheroes are all the rage right now. Marvel Studios has been hitting it out of the park the last few years and DC Comics hasn’t done too bad either. Superheroes have a great way of inspiring greatness. Whether it be playing an up and coming hero still trying to figure out their powers or a near invincible Superman saving the world on a daily basis, in Mutants & Masterminds there’s plenty of potential to be the hero of a hundred different stories.

GURPS

GURPS is an acronym for General Universal Roleplaying System. GURPS is great because it’s so… universal. Almost acting a common, higher set of rules, GURPS allows for several tabletop RPG systems to work together in unison. This is especially great if you only have a certain number of friends, each of whom use different rule sets. One player may particularly want to play a dragonborn sorcerer while another wants to be a Klingon starship pilot and yet another plans to be the Human Torch. Although complicated at first, GURPS is flexible enough to handle any player’s creative ideas. At the very least, it’ll make for quite a story.

Anything You Can Think of

It’s kind of a cop-out to say something like this but that’s the beauty of tabletop roleplaying games. From Mass Effect to Pokémon, there are rule systems for almost anything you can think of. If you can’t find one that you think would be particularly good, there’s no shame in modifying another system. Just credit where credit is due, be responsible, and if you need some help, there are plenty of videos, subreddits, and books that can help. Just get out there and play!

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The Witcher Saga Coming To Netflix

The Witcher Saga Coming To Netflix

THE WITCHER SAGA COMING TO NETFLIX

Press Release

Polish Author Andrzej Sapkowski’s Fantasy Franchise to be Brought to Life as English Language Drama Series

Hollywood, CA., May 17, 2017 – Netflix is developing and producing a new English language drama series based on The Witcher, the globally popular fantasy saga from Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski, that has entranced legions of fans worldwide.

Known collectively as the Witcher Saga, Sapkowski’s eight novels and story collections center on “witchers” — hunters who develop supernatural abilities at a young age to battle deadly monsters. The New York TImes bestselling books have spawned a major video game franchise and have been translated into over 20 languages.

“Andrzej Sapkowski has created a rich and memorable world, at once magical and familiar,” said Erik Barmack, Netflix Vice President, international series. “We couldn’t be more excited about bringing The Witcher saga to Netflix members around the world.”

“I’m thrilled that Netflix will be doing an adaptation of my stories, staying true to the source material and the themes that I have spent over thirty years writing,” said Sapkowski. “I’m excited about our efforts together, as well as the team assembled to shepherd these characters to life.”

Andrzej Sapkowski will serve as a creative consultant on the series. Sean Daniel (The Mummy franchise, The Expanse) and Jason Brown (The Expanse), partners at the Sean Daniel Company are executive producers, along with Tomek Baginski (Oscar nominated short The Cathedral, BAFTA winning The Fallen Art, Ambition) and Jarek Sawko (The Fallen Art, Another Day of Life) from Platige Image, the Polish production and visual effects company.

“The Witcher stories follow an unconventional family that comes together to fight for truth in a dangerous world,” said Sean Daniel and Jason Brown. “The characters are original, funny and constantly surprising and we can’t wait to bring them to life at Netflix, the perfect home for innovative storytelling.”

Added Platige Image’s Tomek Baginski and Jarek Sawko: There is a moral and intellectual depth in these books which goes beyond genre. It is a story about today and today’s challenges, hidden under a fantasy cover. It is a story about us, about the monster and the hero inside all of our hearts.”

About Netflix

Netflix is the world’s leading internet television network with over 100 million members in over 190 countries enjoying more than 125 million hours of TV shows and movies per day, including original series, documentaries and feature films. Members can watch as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, on nearly any internet-connected screen. Members can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments.

Pokémon GO: Raids and Feeding Captured Pokémon

Pokémon GO: Raids and Feeding Captured Pokémon

Pokémon GO: Raids and Feeding Captured Pokémon

Bob McFadden

Trainers over in the Pogodev community have noticed the addition of several new notification toasts to the game. There brief messages will notify the Trainer of certain events that happen in-game. There are five different classifications of events that the player may be notified of, and there are three different phrases for each classification, adding variety to these notifications. These will be a fun and useful addition to the game, but in the meantime, they provide some interesting insight into what is to come.

Notification Toasts

  • Gym removal 1: “[Pokémon name] has fought hard and returned!”
  • Gym removal 2: “[Pokémon name] is back after a hard battle!”
  • Gym removal 3: “[Pokémon name] was forced off the Gym!”
  • Pokémon lost 1: “[Pokémon name] lost a battle!”
  • Pokémon lost 2: “[Pokémon name] was defeated in battle!”
  • Pokémon lost 3: “[Pokémon name] fainted at the Gym!”
  • Pokémon won 1: “[Pokémon name] defended the Gym!”
  • Pokémon won 2: “[Pokémon name] was victorious in battle!”
  • Pokémon won 3: “[Pokémon name] has triumphed over your opponents!”
  • Pokémon hungry 1: “[Pokémon name] is hungry!”
  • Pokémon hungry 2: “[Pokémon name] needs a pick-me-up!”
  • Pokémon hungry 3: “[Pokémon name] wants a berry!”
  • Nearby raid 1: “Nearby raid starting soon!”
  • Nearby raid 2: “There’s a raid about to start near you!”
  • Nearby raid 3: “A raid’s going to start nearby!”
Discovered code
"gym_removal_notification_toast" "{0} has fought hard and returned!" "{0} は 
"pokemon_hungry_notification_toast" "{0} is hungry!" "{0} はお腹が空いている"
"pokemon_lost_notification_toast" "{0} lost a battle!" "{0} は負けてしまった"
"pokemon_won_notification_toast" "{0} defended the Gym!" "{0} はジムを守った!" 
"nearby_raid_notification_toast" "Nearby raid starting soon!" "近くのジムでバ 
"gym_removal_notification_toast|1" "{0} is back after a hard battle!" "{0} が 
"gym_removal_notification_toast|2" "{0} was forced off the Gym!" "{0} がジムか 
"pokemon_hungry_notification_toast|1" "{0} needs a pick-me-up!" "{0} のお腹が 
"pokemon_hungry_notification_toast|2" "{0} wants a berry!" "{0} はきのみを欲 
"pokemon_lost_notification_toast|1" "{0} was defeated in battle!" "{0} は負けて 
"pokemon_lost_notification_toast|2" "{0} fainted at the Gym!" "{0} はひんしになっ 
"pokemon_won_notification_toast|1" "{0} was victorious in battle!" "{0} はバトル 
"pokemon_won_notification_toast|2" "{0} has triumphed over your opponents!"
"nearby_raid_notification_toast|1" "There's a raid about to start near you!"
"nearby_raid_notification_toast|2" "A raid's going to start nearby!" "近くでバ

Gym Removal Notification: This is the most useful addition for gameplay as far as the portions that we can understand right now. Trainers will now be alerted when their Pokémon has been booted from a Gym, so that they are aware that their Pokémon has returned and can respond accordingly. They may have been waiting for this Pokémon to come back so that they can power it up with newly gained Candy and Stardust, or perhaps it is just useful for them to know that there is an attack taking place on their Gym that is to be taken seriously. Some Trainers may even be close to claiming their daily Pokécoins and Stardust, and it may be vital for them to know that the expected reward may have just dropped.

Individual Gym Wins and Losses: Previously, the only ways to know that a Gym was under attack was for you to either be within range-of-sight and see the battle animation and declining Prestige, or for you to notice that a fainted Pokémon had returned to you. Now, Trainers will be equipped with a sort of early-detection system that alerts them more quickly. This can take place as soon as the conclusion of the very first fight of the assault. In addition, this will help Trainers understand the role that their individual Pokémon plays in defending the Gym. The only existing system for this used to be the sparsely-understood “Battles Won” stat that would rarely appear beneath a Pokémon in a Gym. But now, you can take pride in your Pokémon with every successful defense of the Gym, or feel empathy for them with each and every loss.

Pokémon Hungry Notification: The Trainer will also now be notified when one of their Pokémon is hungry. This will be a new game mechanic, as it is currently impossible to feed anything other than Wild Pokémon. Some trainers on The Silph Road reddit are concerned that you will now have to feed Pokémon in Gyms in order to keep them as defenders. They are already speculating on whether you will have to visit the Gyms in person, and considering the potential implications that this could have for giving spoofers advantage. But I think that we may be getting way ahead of ourselves. Of course, it is easy to fall into the mindset that this must be related to Gyms, as everything we have talked about so far has been. But I have a more optimistic prediction, and I think that this is more likely to be related to Buddy Pokémon. Perhaps every once in a while this toast will pop up and give us the opportunity to get a bonus candy for feeding our Buddy Pokémon, or maybe it will just be for fun. Either way, hopefully this can provide SOME use for Nanab berries, other than always immediately trashing them.

Nearby Raids: The most intriguing aspect of this discovery is the mention of “Raids”. The buzzword for Niantic at conferences and in press releases since the Gen 2 release has been “new cooperative social gameplay experiences”. This phrase was even used again in a Niantic blog post today. This is generally assumed to be related to the gym rework that is expected to be the next big quarterly update, but adding this new “Raid” term to the mix might change that expectation a little bit. Perhaps the next big thing isn’t (just?) an overhaul of the existing Gym system, but a new addition to the game entirely. Will this be similar to the Mewtwo Raid in Times Square in the trailer, or some completely different group activity? Let the speculation begin!

New Berries to be Added to Pokemon GO

New Berries to be Added to Pokemon GO

Bob McFadden

The first new items are finally coming to Pokemon GO. As we mentioned over half a year ago, many berries in addition to Razz have had both text references and image assets in the underlying game code ever since the early beta. A huge update today suggests that we will soon actually have access to these in-game.

An update to the Game Master file adds item effects for new berries, increasing the total number of boost-modifying berries from one to five. All of these berries have also had a new attribute added called “growth percent”, suggesting the new ability to grow your own berries.

Based on the names of the effects found in the code, these are our best educated guesses on the effects that these berries will have.

  • Razz berries, as we have already experienced, increase the catch chance for a wild Pokemon by a modifier of 1.5 on your next successful hit.
  • Bluk berries will cause a Pokemon to jump less frequently, and by so doing, make the Pokemon less likely to avoid incoming Pokeballs.
  • Nanab berries will cause a Pokemon to initiate their attack animation/defense less frequently, which will cause less Pokeballs to be rejected and bounce back at the Trainer.
  • Pinap berries will slow the shrinking of the capture circle, making it easier to hit the Pokemon with the desired timing.
  • Wepar berries will enlarge the capture circle, making it more likely to score an accurate throw modifier.

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