After the release of his “single-session” game Subsurface Circular last year, Mike Bithell has announced a Switch version. It’s available today.

Similar to Subsurface Circular, Quarantine Circular takes place primarily through a phone-like texting interface as you make dialogue choices as texts come in. The setting is once again a futuristic sci-fi setting, though the conversations focus on a more personal tale.

The game was announced during today’s Kinda Funny Games Showcase, and you download it on the eShop after the show is over in about half an hour.

This week saw the launch of Destiny 2’s first minor expansion following the release of its Forsaken expansion. It features some new content, but players have had a tough time actually playing it, though Bungie is hoping to address the issues. The developer also detailed a few changes coming to the crucible, and how this year’s Dawning event will work.

The most pressing issue right now is that the new Lost Forges, the main content new to the expansion, are simply too high-level for even 600-power players to enjoy, and for those who haven’t yet had the time to reach the cap, catching up can feel like a gargantuan task. Bungie hopes to alleviate both of these issues with the next update, 2.1.2, which drops on December 11. While Bungie has already lowered the power requirements by five to address the former issue, after 2.1.2 prime engrams, one of the most potent sources of leveling, will “drop more frequently and with larger power bumps for players under 600 power.” Depending on how this change plays out, Bungie may also further bump up the leveling speed in the future.

Second, the Dawning, Destiny’s annual Winter event, will have new twist. Baking is a major part of the theme, as players will be able to find ingredients to bake “Gjallardoodles or Chocolate Ship Cookies.” Combining different ingredients in various ways will yield different results, with the potential for “mismatched ingredients” leading to poor results. From these ingredients players will be able to gain enhancement cores, mods, gear, and the new Avalanche heavy machine gun by giving the baked goods to various vendors. Players can also get more ingredients with the Bright Dust currency, but must have acquire Essence of Dawnings by playing the game to do so. Of course, there’s also a new round of Dawning gear, including a sleigh-looking sparrow, a new ship, and emotes, along with the regular bonus leveling drops of cosmetic items.

There are also several changes coming to the Crucible soon. The most major change is the reduction of power ammo, which many players cited as being too plentiful and having far too much control over the flow of multiplayer matches. Although the initial spawn time for power ammo remains the same, Bungie is extending the timer for additional spawns after that by anywhere between 15 and 75 seconds, depending on the mode.

The balance team is also looking into potentially buffing sniper, scout, and fusion rifles across the board, nerfing the Nova Warp super currently dominating matches, making melee-based supers more reliable, buffing most pre-Forsaken subclasses, and nerfing Telesto, the fusion rifle most players have opted for after the relative falloff of Sleeper Simulant. Finally, Bungie hopes to release “smaller batches of patches more frequently.”

To read more about Destiny 2: Forsaken, check out our review.

[Source: Bungie]

I haven’t had time to hop into Black Armory yet, but I appreciate the easing of leveling and endgame power requirements. I am, however, a little concerned about the new Dawning format; I don’t think anyone wants to grind the new seasonal content only to come out with a bunch of botched “pastries.” It all depends on how plentiful the ingredients are, I guess.

If you’re fiending for some early Super Smash Bros. Ultimate competition, this weekend hosts New Game Plus, a well-attended Chicago Smash tournament. It’s too early to know which characters might be good, but if you’re interested in learning the game, this is a good place to start. (Stream / Schedule)

Meanwhile, Dota 2‘s Megafon tournament has a small-but-elite roster of teams (including International champions Team Liquid) competing for $300,000. (Stream / Schedule)

Mountain Dew is sponsoring this week’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive major, which has the four remaining teams fighting in the playoffs for their share of $50,000. (Stream / Schedule)

Rocket League  is having the championships for its collegiate league today. The action starts at 2pm central. (Stream)

You can also catch some PUBG action from the MPL Season 2 Finals, which has several teams of four competing for both cash and a spot in the upcoming Asia Invitational. (Stream)

That’s it for this weekend! Let us know if we missed an event, or if there’s a scene you’d like us to cover, in the comments.

At last night’s Game Awards, Monster Hunter: World developers were asked by host Geoff Keighley if they had anything to announce. They demurred and instead said there will be something big within the next couple of days, but they couldn’t say it there on stage. Today, Capcom announced there will be a special Monster Hunter stream for fans on Monday, December 10, likely to introduce whatever it was they were hinting at.

Even the PlayStation account is trying to pique player interest.

It’s been slightly under a year since the game’s late January release, meaning that plans for things like a G-Rank or additional monsters usually get revealed to the public. In the past, Monster Hunter games used to issue entirely new titles for those revisions, which is something Capcom has said they did not want to do this time around, especially as they have the ability to issue them digitally. Could it be a paid DLC expansion, perhaps? What if it’s not an expansion at all? We’ll find out for sure on December 10.

Monster Hunter: World is currently available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

Replay – Project Snowblind

While most modern players will recognize them as the Tomb Raider studio of record (their recent foray away from the series in favor of an Avengers game notwithstanding), Crystal Dynamics has a long history of games without any tombs or raiding. Case in point: 2005’s Project Snowblind, a game many people remember for having existed. It released in what now seems like a strange era for shooters; far removed from the more high-octane romps of the 90s, but not quite in time to be part of the ADS trend that took the genre by storm a few years after. Anyway, Reiner, Leo, and I run this shooter through its cyber paces, and tackle a more classic game right after.

As we dive into this weekend, most of the Game Informer editors are looking forward to using their favorite gaming characters to beat up other ones because Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is out today! When we aren’t feverishly fighting our way through that game, a ton of us will be trying to finish Red Dead Redemption II. Those who have finished the game promise it’s not a long ride for a short drink of water, though.  

If you are doing anything fun this weekend, let us know in the comments below!

Leo Vader (@leovader) – I’ll be playing more Red Dead Online! Hopefully all the free money they gave out will be enough to get a long scope rifle for hunting. I’ll also be playing more Just Cause 4 and trying out that new Hitman 2 escalation. Best time to be a gamer!!!!

Brian Shea (@BrianPShea) – I’ve beaten the main story of Red Dead Redemption II and now it’s time to make my way through the epilogue. Of course, my progress will be slowed significantly by the launch of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, which I’m absolutely loving already.

Imran Khan (@imranzomg) – It’s pretty much the end of the year! Right now, I am just in cleanup mode both figuratively and literally. The rest of the time will be taken up by unlocking Smash characters, which, at this pace, I should be finished doing so by the end of December 2019.

Jill Grodt (@Finruin) – It will be a bitter-sweet weekend, but I’m going to try to cram in as much gaming as I can in between packing up and doing some last-minute sightseeing. Really looking forward to trying out the new Super Smash Bros. (especially after Joker was announced as a DLC character at The Game Awards last night). Besides that, I want to check out Throne Breaker and spend some time not progressing in Red Dead Redemption II’s story.

Suriel Vasquez (@SurielVazquez) – Kirby and I are headed to the Black Armory to play some Keeper Draft with Dutch.

Kyle Hilliard (@KyleMHilliard) – I’m STILL playing Red Dead Redemption II. It’s only getting better as I go, but man… I have been playing that a long time. I also legally have to play Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Otherwise I have some steak dinner plans, some children’s birthday party plans, and cleaning the house plans. It’s going to be a killer weekend.

Elise Favis (@elisefavis) – I’m nearly done with Red Dead II, so I hope that I can wrap it up this weekend. Though I’ve been a bit distracted with Hitman 2 because it’s so, so good. I’m having fun smacking people with a fish and killing them in ludicrous ways. I never thought I’d commit murder while wearing a flamingo costume, but here I am.

Javy Gwaltney – JAVY SMASH

Ben Hanson (@yozetty) – This weekend is, you’ll never guess, all about Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. I’m excited to hopefully unlock a lot of characters tonight and then tomorrow I’ll be playing with friends and having the best time ever under the sun. Have a good weekend!

Jeff Cork – I’ve been playing a ton of Smash this past week, so I haven’t been able to make any more progress on Red Dead 2 or my weekly Overwatch challenges. That changes NOW! And then I’ll get back to Smash. Who am I kidding?

While Mortal Kombat XI has been rumored practically to the point of inevitability, it was still a surprise when Ed Boon revealed the new game at last night’s Game Awards. The trailer, which was set to an original track, showed Dark Raiden from Mortal Kombat X’s ending facing off against Scorpion, which seemed about right. It then raised more questions when Scorpion re-emerged in his Mortal Kombat II garb, once again sporting the powers of a demon.

If you’re confused about this, don’t worry, you’re not the only one. In a press release, developer Netherrealm describes the story as “time-bending,” suggesting that multiple incarnations of long-running characters will be present for the tournament. It would be a good way to bring back characters left by the wayside when the story rebooted with Mortal Kombat 9.

The press release also confirms that character variations will be a major factor, though it seems to be taking more from Injustice 2’s character customizations than the the multiple styles that were present in Mortal Kombat X. Netherrealm has seemingly taken feedback on the balance of the variations from both games to better implement them now.

A full reveal will take place on January 17 in Los Angeles and will be livestreamed simultaneously. With the game roughly five months out, it is likely that WB and Netherrealm are planning to a blitz of information in the next few months in preparation for its April launch.

Mortal Kombat XI will be release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC on April 23.

Below is a roguelike about exploring a series of descending caves on a mysterious island that seems to dare adventurers to come and see if they can survive its challenges. You can craft food and potions, hunt wildlife, and if you die, another adventurer will make their way to the island to quite literally pick up where you left off by acquiring the lamp you dropped on the ground when you died. Despite the density of mechanics and the vague story about a mysterious island that seems to draw in those courageous enough to find it, Below does not offer much on-screen text or tutorial. Alongside the challenge of surviving, figuring out the game’s myriad mechanics, and how to take advantage of them, is one of the things developer Capy Games hope players embrace.

“I am worried about it,” creative director Kris Piotrowski says, “It is a decision that has risks to it, for sure.” Piotrowski recalls the first time he played Minecraft with a wiki open nearby explaining how the game worked, and that was part of the reason he enjoyed the experience. The community was there to help. “I remember when I first played Dark Souls, there was so much to it that wasn’t explained and I feel like communities can be built around players helping each other learn and figure out things out,” Piotrowski says. That of course lead to a familiar comparison.

“I think Dark Souls is a brilliant game and the comparison is nothing  but complimentary from my perspective,” Piotrowski says regarding the familiar refrain that many games receive these days: it’s like Dark Souls! And in some ways it is. You open shortcuts to the islands assorted lower levels as you play, combat is precise and challenging and when you die, there is incentive to go back and picked up what you dropped, but Below certainly has an identity of its own. “This is a weird game that has a lot of weird little things in it, but it’s also a game where you have a sword and shield and it has combat that sort of feels like Zelda or Dark Souls,” Piotrowski says.

Despite his worry about the ambiguous nature of the game, Piotrowski is confident players will be able to figure out the game. “There is a bit of an entry-level starting point that I think players kind of wrap their heads around. I think games have gone very far in the direction of hand-holding and telegraphing and rewarding players continuously. That kind of slow dopamine drop of gameplay cycles that are finely tuned to keep you in the game and sort of spoon feed you every little detail. I think most games do that and I think certain game fans like to just approach a game and try to figure it out,” Piotrowski says. “I think there is pleasure in trying to figure out the mechanics. When a game tells you, ‘Hey, you’re on your own!’ a different part of your brain turns on.”

Below finally releases on Xbox One and PC on December 14. For more on the game, you can watch us play the game with Piotrowski here, and see him on The Game Informer Show podcast right here.

After last night’s announcement of a seemingly-unnamed new Dragon Age project, fans have been eager for Bioware to detail the upcoming game. Unfortunately, Bioware is staying mostly tight-lipped outside of a blog post that can best be summarized as “It exists, you’ll see more eventually.”

“We have been working on a new Dragon Age game for quite a while now and I am pleased to finally tease the existence of this project!” writes Mike Darrah, producer for the Dragon Age games and also Anthem. “While we won’t be sharing any details for now, I can tell you we have been building a new team around a core of Dragon Age veterans, people I’ve worked with on Dragon Age, Jade Empire, and some of whom I’ve worked with since the Baldur’s Gate days. While I have been focused on Anthem, the rest of the team has been hard at work exploring ways to push BioWare’s storytelling to the next level.”

Before the game’s reveal, GamesBeat reported that the game is still extremely nascent and has little to it besides a confirmation of life. The blog post seems to confirm that to be the case, though Darrah’s comment seems to suggest that pre-production work has been occurring while he manages Anthem. This fits with GamesBeat’s timeline suggesting the game is still three to four years away, but Bioware wanted to reassure their fans that something more RPG-like is coming.

What do you think about the early reveal for the next Dragon Age game? Do you think it was important for Bioware to show the series is still being worked on or do you think they should have waited?

It’s been an excellent year for gaming. So good, in fact, that everybody is having a tough time choosing which game should be Game of the Year for 2018. Jeff Cork, Kyle Hilliard, and I decided to settle this in the most scientific way possible: a winner-take-all match of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. May the best character metaphor/game win! We hope you enjoy the video!

You can also read Jeff Cork’s full, glowing review for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate right here.