The Strong museum, Rochester Institute of Technology, and Second Avenue Learning have collaborated on an iOS minigame collection titled The Original Mobile Games. This “new” title chronicles the history of handheld and dexterity-based games dating back over one hundred years and compiles them into a modern collection free on iOS.

RIT students spearheaded the project, garnering attention from gaming historians and later aid from the Second Avenue Learning production team. The collection launches with six titles, each complete with an introduction to give historical context, with new games being planned as add-ons at a later date.

“The initial launch features, among others, Pigs in Clover (players navigate four balls through a maze), Queen Mary (players place three “bouys” and then pilot the ship into the dock), and the Niagara Puzzle (players must send a stream of balls into the whirlpool at the bottom of the Falls),” The Strong museum writes. “These games were often themed around historic events. Queen Mary celebrates the 1934 launch of the popular ocean liner. The Niagara Puzzle even played a small part in changing history; it was used to smuggle maps, files, and compasses to British prisoners of war during World War II.”

The Original Mobile Games is only available for iOS devices and can be downloaded right now.

Nintendo has revealed a third Labo kit, Vehicle, with an entirely new cardboard set and game on Twitter today with a release date in September.

The software from the video seems to involve driving around using the cardboard steering wheel and pedal. The steering wheel also has the function of using different levers to transform the vehicle into a plane or submarine, as well. The plane parts are seemingly very Pilotwings-like and, considering the recent Labo patch for Mario Kart 8, applying the steering wheel to that game is likely on the table.

Check out the trailer below.

The Labo vehicle kit will release for Switch on September 14 for $69.99.

Throughout the Yakuza series, Kiryu is pretty well-known to avoid romantic entanglements, whether due to his own choice or an outright obliviousness. One notable exception was Yakuza 2, and now retained in Yakuza Kiwami 2, as Kiryu gets to know the hard-nosed detective Kaoru Sayama. That relationship is the focal point of the new trailer for Kiwami 2, which you can find below.

Yakuza Kiwami 2 is a full remake of Yakuza 2, originally released in 2006 in Japan and 2008 in America on the PlayStation 2. The game is completely remade in Yakuza 6’s Dragon engine and has extra Majima content not present in the original release.

You can pick up Kiwami 2 next month on August 28 on the PlayStation 4. A demo is available now on PSN.

Since the original launch of Destiny, Bungie has fielded and absorbed feedback on the lore of the series. For a lot of players, the lore of the series is more important than the games sometime makes it seem, and they have made that clear. With that, Bungie and Blizzard are compiling Destiny’s lore and publishing it into an anthology for you to proudly display.

The Destiny Grimoire Anthology Vol. 1 is the first collectible volume of collected Destiny lore. It covers all the heroes, villains, enemies, and allies throughout the series.

https://twitter.com/Bungie/status/1022587181896888322

The 128-page first volume is titled Dark Mirror and is intended to provide new information and perspectives on aspects of the lore the games cover and aspects they don’t. Each volume is intended to cover a different to examine different facets of the world, encouraging fans to get them all.

The book is up for preorder now with a planned release this fall.

The Marvel Ultimate Alliance games, action RPGs featuring huge casts of Marvel characters, have been delisted from digital distribution services suddenly and without warning from publisher Activision. 

A post on Reddit noticed the games missing today. There had been speculation about them getting delisted due to the frequency in which the two titles were appearing on sale. The games were on both PlayStation Network, Steam, and Xbox Live sales multiple times in the last two months, but Activision had not announced anything. Now, the game is missing from all three of those services.

The games were ported from previous generation consoles to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 in 2016, two years from today. While people who own the game can still play it unimpeded, anyone who was hoping to get it in the future or came back from a Marvel movie looking for a game to play can’t look to this one any longer.

[Source: Reddit]

 

Judging by the sales and the fact that both games disappeared two years from the date of release, this likely isn’t coincidence. That’s fine, it’s understandable on some level that licenses don’t live forever, but the lack of warning was a bad move.

Game Informer’s Ben Hanson, Kyle Hilliard, and Javy Gwaltney talk about picking No Man’s Sky up again after a couple of years and what they think of the gameplay for No Man’s Sky Next from Hello Games. Then Suriel Vazquez joins the show to talk about the Mega Man X Legacy Collection and the delightful WarioWare Gold on the Nintendo 3DS. After some great community emails and a shocking appearance by Dan Tack, we’re joined by Edmund McMillen to talk about leaving Team Meat and Super Meat Boy behind for his work on Binding of Isaac: Four Souls.

You can watch the video below, subscribe and listen to the audio on iTunes or Google Playlisten to episode 408 on SoundCloud, or download the MP3 by clicking here. Also, be sure to send your questions to podcast@gameinformer.com for a chance to have them answered on the show.

To jump to a particular point in the discussion, check out the time stamps below…

1:50 – No Man’s Sky Next
21:40 – Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 & 2
34:40 –
 WarioWare Gold
49:05 – Community emails
1:39:50 – Edmund McMillen on Binding of Isaac: Four Souls

Blizzard has taken to announcing new characters for their MOBA game Heroes of the Storm fewer and farther between. It’s been just under two months since Yrel was shown off, which is one of the longest lengths of time for new character reveals. That changes today with Blizzard announcing High Inquisitor Whitemane for the game.

Nothing has been revealed about her yet, but the Heroes of the Storm Twitter account indicates she’ll be getting her own Hero spotlight tomorrow.

Presumably her fighting style will be primarily magic-based, which could be pretty useful depending on how Blizzard designs her.

Hit And Run

Three Fields Entertainment’s games so far (Danger Zone and Dangerous Golf) haven’t strayed from the studios’ roots as the creators of the Burnout series and its fabled Crash mode. Danger Zone 2 is no exception: You hurtle your car towards an intersection and hope to create as much chaos and damage as possible when you detonate your explosive Smashbreaker and blow up everything around you. But this sequel adds on to the formula by also emphasizing what you do before you get there, and in the process, expands the playing field – if only a little.

The new objectives added to the levels (which are now set in outside environments) are not surprising, but they’re effective. They don’t just give you something extra to do, they fit nicely into the game’s existing framework. Who doesn’t want more ways to spread destruction? Destroying a requisite number of a certain vehicle type is often about controlling a semi and punting cars ahead of you like auto-projectiles. Racing through timed gates sounds boring, but when it’s into oncoming traffic in a fast-but-fragile formula-one-type car, you may actually look to scrub off speed just to stay alive rather than get to the gate as fast as you can. Increasing your speed also ups the fear factor when you chain together boosts, which is the only way to win in some levels. These examples also highlight how Danger Zone 2’s various vehicles influence gameplay in their own way, another welcome addition.

Regardless of how appropriate it all fits together, the gameplay isn’t deep enough to allow you to construct outcomes that lead to lasting satisfaction. For instance, the way you interact with cars and environment is limited, and the linear levels always end in a Smashbreaker detonation in a pre-designed zone. The reliance on a mixture of randomness and carefully orchestrated set pieces is definitely part of its charm, but the predominance of randomness only exacerbates the sense of shallowness and lack of thrills that go beyond an ephemeral dopamine hit.

Like the first game, Danger Zone 2 isn’t helped by its sparse feature set. Multiplayer consists only of leaderboards (not even pass-the-controller multiplayer) and there’s no progression system apart from medaling to unlock the next level.

Danger Zone 2 takes necessary, if limited, steps beyond its predecessor with new pieces that fit nicely into the structure of chaos. It makes a spectacle all right, but it’s fleeting.

With Hitman 2 releasing this November, Warner Bros. and IO Interactive are giving players the opportunity to get their name and likeness into the game by sniping people really well.

Hitman: Sniper Assassin is a standalone title with multiplayer components that follows the mobile game of a similar name fairly closely. From now until November, players with an IO Interactive account can play Sniper Assassin and compete for high scores. Those top three scorers will get their names and likenesses into future content of Hitman 2, though it’s not clear if they’re just NPCs or full-on targets.

Check out the trailer for the competition below.

Future Hitman 2 content seems to mean that, despite Hitman 2 releasing on a disc and not episodic like its predecessor, IO Interactive will probably be treating the game as a live title with new content and updates beyond the initial release. Hopefully that includes new levels and elusive targets, as well.

Hitman 2 releases on November 13 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

Although Forsaken promises to give Destiny 2 players plenty of new things to do (a new campaign, two new destinations, the new Gambit mode), it’s also making big changes to some of the things already on offer. This September, fans will find two major aspects have been altered: Milestones, which will become more plentiful and fluid, and mods, which will hopefully become a more meaningful way to customize your gear.

We spoke to Destiny 2 game director Steve Cotton about both of these changes, and he shed plenty of light on how players can expect to change up their guns and weekly schedule around the new mods and milestones in Forsaken.

From Milestones To Challenges

One of the most prominent changes from the original Destiny to Destiny 2 is the increased focus on weekly milestones. At the start of each week in Destiny 2, you get a fresh new slate of milestones which offer “powerful” loot the only kind that can increase your power level in the lategame.

Although this system makes it easy to see what you should do to increase your power, it also has its flaws. Milestones currently have you heading to the same activities to accomplish the same tasks every week. And once you complete these weekly milestones, you don’t have too many other ways of leveling up. Iron Banner and Faction Rally events, catalysts, and other activities offer other objectives to chase, but it’s hard not to feel discouraged from playing after a certain point every week, which isn’t exactly what you want out of a “hobby” game.

When the Forsaken launches, hardcore players will have much more on their plates. Rather than a set number of milestones, what you do in a given week will vary. While raids and raid lairs will still offer their regular powerful rewards once per week, other milestones will change to a four-day cycle. “All the Destiny 2 milestones will be there, but they will be advertised and tracked in a different way,” Cotton says. The tab will now only show critical-path objectives, like story mode and DLC completion, quest steps, and legacy milestones from the base game (such as quests for exotic weapons like the MIDA Multi-Tool).

Instead of checking a tab to see your task list, you’ll now find the director lighting up and pointing you to individual locations and activity destinations (like the Vanguard and Crucible screens), which will show you how to earn powerful loot. “The best way to think about this is that there will be several different ways to go out in the world and get more powerful,” Cotton says.

Second, some terminology is changing. Milestones are now challenges, and what Destiny 2 currently calls challenges (objectives that offer tokens for their completion) will be absorbed into the new bounty system. Along with the usual powerful reward checklist from the base game (for completing the weekly Flashpoint, Strike, Crucible, Nightfall, Clan, and Raid challenges), there will be new weekly challenges for bounties, Gambit, Heroic story missions, and the Dreaming City’s new public event. And, when it’s time for an Iron Banner or Faction Rally event, those will also add to the list of challenges for that week.

On top of that, new daily challenges will offer more ways for players to get earn powerful loot every day. These challenges will rotate among various activities like strikes, Nightfall strikes, Gambit, Heroic adventures, and Crucible. So in a given week, you might tackle two Crucible challenges, two Gambit challenges, two strike challenges, and one Heroic adventure, depending on the random rotation.

If you don’t have time to log in every day, don’t worry – daily challenges will wait for you. If you miss daily challenges, they’ll stockpile until you have four saved up right before the next four-day reset. “If you wait longer than four days, you will miss the reset but the next time you log on there will be four daily challenges available to you,” Cotton says. “If you do one or more the next day, if one of the ones you did is the daily reset, a new one will pop (on a schedule), and so on.”

Bounties will also offer additional ways to get more powerful. As we mentioned earlier this month, the bounty system will offer small quests for players of varying power levels to accomplish, and some will offer powerful loot. Not all bounties will, but each bounty will clearly display its reward, letting you know which ones to pick up if you’re only looking for powerful rewards.

There will also be several hidden challenges to look for, ones not highlighted by the director and which observant players will have to find for themselves, scattered across several activities. This should bring back some of the mystery fans have been looking for since the launch of Destiny 2; not only will you have a more extensive checklist of things to get more powerful, but exploring the world for secrets might also prove useful.

All of these new ways to earn powerful loot should offer reasons for players to keep playing much more regularly. “The intent is that you will always have something to go after,” Cotton says. This, on top of the new triumphs system, collections, and regular events already on the Destiny 2 calendar, should give players lots to do as they make the climb to the 600 power cap and suss out all of Forsaken’s secrets.

More Meaningful Mods

Another aspect of Destiny 2 that’s being reworked are mods. Before, they offered a way for each weapon and piece of armor to differentiate itself, and legendary mods offered a small boost in power, making them the only way to reach the power cap. As players sunk their teeth into the game, however, they found most mods weren’t all that different, and often, felt more like a requirement than a fun tool (see: legendary kinetic mods, which only offered five-point power boost for kinetic weapons).

With Forsaken, mods will hopefully be useful enough that you’ll want to equip them, not have to. For one, mods will no longer offer a power boost, which means you won’t have a pressing need to equip a mod just to slightly increase your power. This means a couple of things: First, at Forsaken’s launch, only legendary mods will be available (no more combining rare mods!).

Second, it means a bit of house-cleaning. With your current mods becoming obsolete, you’ll have to make a quick run to the Gunsmith, who will take your old mods and trade them for components to make new ones. This does come with a slight downside: Because all mods are now designed to be more expressive, energy and heavy weapon mods will no longer act as a way to change the element of a given weapon.

These new mods will be less about cooldown reductions and more about changes you’ll notice right away. A few mods Cotton was able to reveal to us were Icarus Grip (which improves your weapon’s accuracy while airborne), Radar Tuner (which decreases the time it takes for your radar to return after you’re done aiming your weapon), and Targeting Adjuster (which grants your weapon better target acquisition).

According to Cotton, bonuses like these will make mods more impactful overall. As a counterweight, mods will also be harder to acquire, but when you get one you like, it should feel like you’re making a weapon your own. “Ideally they aren’t something that you are swapping in and out regularly,” says Cotton. “[They’re] more something you use to put the finishing touches on your favorite weapons and armor.”

These changes also apply to raid weapons, which will use the same mod system, but also have access to unique raid mods. And while raid mods for the new raid that will follow Forsaken’s launch will be tailored to that specific raid, “there’s nothing stopping us from sneaking in some more universal raid mods in the future,” Cotton says.

While new content is always great to see, it’s the fundamental underpinnings of a game like Destiny 2 that can mean the difference between checking in with it every once in a while and having it regular rotation. With these sweeping changes to both milestones and mods, Cotton and the rest of the team at Bungie hope to move Destiny 2 further into the latter by always giving players something new to do, and making their choice of weapon and mod matter more than ever.

For more on Destiny 2: Forsaken, such as a look at a match of the new Breakthrough mode and your community questions answered, click on the banner below to see all of our Destiny 2 content, and check back throughout the month for more coverage.