Joystiq Weekly: VR walker Omni, Hitman Go review, Mario Golf's season pass and more

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Joystiq Weekly: VR walker Omni, Hitman Go review, Mario Golf's season pass and more
Welcome to Joystiq Weekly, a "too long; didn't read" of each week's biggest stories, reviews and original content. Each category's top story is introduced with a reactionary gif, because moving pictures aren't just for The Daily Prophet.
Okay, we have to admit that the Omni, a motion-tracking platform that associates real-life walking with in-game movement, is kind of ridiculous, right? Yeah, we do and we will - as long as we can also acknowledge how interesting the concept is.

Sprinting in reality to hurry down a virtual hallway probably won't be as quick as strafing with arrow keys, but the tradeoff sounds worthwhile. Pairing Omni with the Oculus Rift would bring us closer to the hectic deathmatch action of games like Halo 4, but we could also do rhythmic leaps through stages of Runner 2 or wildly-dangerous imitations of Mirror's Edge's parkour. Hmm ... maybe Omni should be bundled with life insurance.

We can ponder the benefits of treadmill controllers together, but if your brain needs a break from all that, there's plenty of gears to switch to after the break. Between a glimpse of the new Ace Attorney game, reviews for NES Remix 2 and Hitman Go, and an exploration of morality systems like those found in the Infamous and Mass Effect series, there's lots to think about beyond how physical our video games could be in a few decades.

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition is bringing Bioware's RPG series to current generation consoles on October 7, but you can properly prepare to part with your money right now. EA has described a few things fans can get in return for opting for the $70 Digital Deluxe Edition, including an in-game throne made from a dragon skull, a mount called the Bog Unicorn and a digital soundtrack. There's also "to be announced" bonus digital content. Like the details for Inquisition's Collector's Edition, they should be announced in the "next few weeks."
  • The genre of 3D collectathon platformers hasn't received much love lately. A new romp inspired by Rare's Banjo-Kazooie would be a great solution to that problem, but series composer Grant Kirkhope recently shot that possibility down. Grant explained that a team of developers got as far as drawing up a character and making a prototype stage for the project, but it fell through because "everyone's got jobs, etc." Well, at least we can still hunt for Jiggies in the existing N64 games.
  • Zynga has announced that co-founder Mark Pincus is stepping down as Chief Product Officer, though he will reclaim his former duty of serving as Chairman of the Board. That role was previously handled by Don Mattrick, former president of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business, who was brought on in July 2013 as Zynga's CEO. It all follows Zynga's fair amount of personnel shuffling over the last year.
  • The future of strapping video game displays to our faces and running in place in the corner of our living rooms appears to be drawing nearer. Virtuix's virtual-reality supplemented platform for gaming, Omni, has received $3 million in seed funding. Virtuix explained that the cash is meant to help it "expand production and distribution of the Omni." We're not production leads, but making more of a thing sounds like a good way to sell more things!
  • Do you hate harboring a general sense of security in life? Well then, Tecmo Koei and Nintendo might have a fix for you! The companies announced a future Wii U entry in the Fatal Frame series, which makes players snap pictures of ghosts to capture spirits and protect themselves from their attacks. Unfortunately, its potential to reach North America hasn't been confirmed, but considering previous entries were like playing Pokemon Snap with terrifying ghost children, maybe that's for your own good.
  • Fore! ... teen ninety-nine ($14.99) will be the price for Mario Golf: World Tour's season pass. Each piece of DLC will add two 18-hole courses to choose from, as well as one character from the selection of Rosalina, Toadette and Nabbit. The extra content for developer Camelot's golf outing will be available in three individual packs for $6 apiece, but buying a pass for all three at $15 will also let players drive for the green with Gold Mario.
  • If you browsed Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy's DLC selection, wishing you could justify the cash for all the extra tracks you wanted, you're in luck - a North American winter release has been confirmed for the expanded Curtain Call edition. With 221 total songs, more heroes from the Final Fantasy series and a two-player duel mode, Curtain Call seems to offer an extensive trip for those looking to travel through memories of the series via song.
  • Want a taste of the 3DS' new Ace Attorney game that was announced this week? Well, you can't really taste digital media unless you eat it (don't do that), but you can watch the debut trailer for the sort-of law simulator set in the Meiji era. It's said to be the first entry in a new series called The Great Ace Attorney, which will follow an ancestor of the objection!-able Phoenix Wright.

  • Senior Reporter Jess Conditt braced herself for adventure game logic before diving into Moebius: Empire Rising, but she still found some puzzling elements unrelated to its mysteries. Despite carrying an interesting cast that shares similarities to historical figures, Jess confessed she's "read better fanfiction" in comparison to Moebius' script. Jess found its fondness for adding mundane, clickable things boring, and its refusal to let players pick up key items until they find the associated puzzle irritating. Jess wrote that Moebius "feels like an early version of a full game, something that needs playtesting and a keen critical eye before it's ready for public consumption."
  • Translating the Hitman series into a board game wouldn't have been our first idea for the assassin-oriented series' latest installment. It's the direction Ubisoft Montreal chose for the mobile Hitman Go though, and Community Manager Anthony John Agnello recently toyed around with Agent 47's new approach to his targets. Grid-based movement, optional objectives and guards offering color-coordinated threats stood between Anthony and his prey, but he found surprising complexity in the challenge of surpassing their defenses. Agnello enjoyed Go's more subdued take compared to its predecessors, remarking that it "fits touch-based devices like a fine leather glove."
  • An upside to a rough debut is that it's a lot easier to improve upon it with the next effort. Weekend Editor Thomas Schulenberg was happy to find that to be the case with NES Remix 2, a sequel that balances the challenge of creating a new experience from pieces of classic games without feeling like a fragmented mess. In comparison to the original, Thomas appreciated Remix 2's slightly longer challenges, its upgrade in source material and its more inventive Remix stages. Thomas concluded that the followup transforms a "style of play that used to frustrate into a nostalgia trip that asks to be played both alone and with others."

Featured Content
  • The Games for Change Awards doled out its accolades this week, recognizing games like , Gone Home, Papers, Please and The Mission US: A Cheyenne Odyssey for their socially-conscious source material. Joystiq spoke with Papers, Please's Lucas Pope about why he thinks the border control simulator resonates with players, as well as why he thinks socially-conscious games are gaining more attention in the modern space.
  • Infamous: Second Son certainly isn't the first game to feature a morality system, but it's the most recent example that made Editor-In-Chief Ludwig Kietzmann consider the mechanic's place in gaming. Ludwig's piece examines choices that feel too weighted in one direction and explores potential ways to make morality a more subtle presence in games.
  • Skylanders collectors will have a new batch of toys to hunt down once Skylanders Trap Team hits consoles. Like the rest of the series, the upcoming action adventure romp incorporates real-world toys using NFC technology. Trap Team's twist lies in allowing players to capture 40 of its villains in translucent toys made of "Traptanium," effectively making defeated characters switch sides and fight for their captors.
  • Reviews Content Director Richard Mitchell joined Ludwig, Jess and Thomas on this week's Super Joystiq Podcast to talk about the procedurally-generated frights of Daylight, NES Remix 2's turnaround, and Moebius' fumbling with a cool premise. Ludwig also leads the group to Zanarkand with a return to Final Fantasy 10 / 10-2 HD, and Mario Kart: Double Dash finally finds itself a fan amongst the Joystiq staff.
[Image: Virtuix]
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