The Quest Log: May 5, 2017

19 Years Later, Germany Gets the Uncensored Version of Half-Life

The original Half-Life is an undisputed classic whose influence on the FPS genre and virtually all modern gaming truly can’t be understated, but it was deemed a bit too violent for German audiences when it launched in 1998. It’s commonly known that Germany takes a stricter stance on violence in gaming than we typically see in the U.S. with many (of what we’d call) M-rated games being outright banned in the country. To ensure that doesn’t happen, devs often tweak their content to ensure that they can slip under regulations and release at least some version of their game for German audiences. Such was the case for Half-Life, in which enemy marine soldiers were replaced by robots and civilian scientists were rendered invincible.

As of this week, however, a free DLC pack is available via Steam that removes the German version’s censorship and presents Half-Life in its original, fantastic, and violent format. (link only accessible when not signed into a non-German Steam account)

Valve Update Steam Gift Policy, Upset Fans

In other Steam-related news, Valve have updated their policies regarding gift copies of games purchased via their service.  Gifts can now be scheduled for future delivery (e.g., for an upcoming holiday), and non-accepted gifts are now refunded directly to the purchaser’s credit card rather than being stashed in their inventories. That all sounds pretty good, but some users are upset about the change because Steam will no longer allow users to stockpile gift copies of games during Steam’s oft-publicized sales to be handed out on a whim.

Bethesda Asked an Indie Dev to Chang the Name of their Game Because It Contained the Word “Prey”

Prey, the sci-fi horror game by Arkane Studios and Bethesda Softworks, launched this week, and word on the street is that it’s pretty great. The game’s title is a holdover from a unique 2006 FPS that 2K published, a sequel to which was announced but ultimately canceled in 2014. This week’s release has a great deal more in common with the System Shock series than it does to its own namesake, but that doesn’t mean that Bethesda aren’t very concerned about preserving the integrity of the title.

In a post on their official blog, No Matter Studios announced that their upcoming indie game, inspired heavily by Shadow of the Colossus, was officially changing its name from “Prey for the Gods” to “Præy for the Gods” in response to a request they received from Zenimax’s (the parent company to Bethesda) notoriously over-eager lawyers. They explain:

“We could’ve fought this and we did think about it for quite a while. Something like a trademark opposition can be long and depending on how far someone wants to fight it can be very expensive. We didn’t want to spend our precious Kickstarter funds, nor did we want to have to ask for additional funds to fight this in court. “

Eventually, they say, they came to an agreement with Zenimax in which No Matter Studios will continue to use their original logo for the upcoming release while still tweaking the way its title will be formally written out.

Most Anticipated Games of Q2 2017

It is time yet again for another look into what the next 3 months of videogames hold for us, following up on what most certainly was a historic Q1. After sinking hundreds of hours into games like Zelda BOTW, Horizon Zero Dawn, & Resident Evil 7, it’s time to look forward and review what we have in store from April 1st through the end of June. Without further ado, here are my most anticipated games of Q2 2017:

1- Person 5

Release Date: April 4, 2017

After the huge success of Persona 4 and the PS Vita iteration Persona 4 Golden, the cult classic franchise is finally upon us and looking to start off Q2 in a big way. The JRPG is promising all of the familiar tropes that we have come to expect– you’re the new kid in the area just trying to make some friends and discovers he has the special ability to use Personas– and from there it takes off. I had the opportunity to play this last December for about a half hour, and it delivers on all the look and feels that we have come to love, with the addictive gameplay loop that will keep you going for hours (hundreds is more accurate here). Whether you are an old fan of the series, or a first timer looking to get on the hype train, Persona 5 promises to be a thrilling experience you won’t want to miss. 

2- Outlast 2

Release Date: April 25, 2017

Who’s ready to scream? Outlast 2 is finally here, following the huge success of the original’s debut back in 2014. The first-person survival horror game is set in a small village in the Sonoran desert, where you are separated from your wife in a helicopter crash. You are tasked to find your wife and to survive as long as you can, all the while catching as much of this craziness on your trusty camcorder (let’s hope he brought a LOT of batteries with him this time). Outlast 2 is already looking to be one of the scariest games of the year, and if it plays any similar to the original, it will give you plenty to lose sleep over. 

3- Prey

Release Date: May 5, 2017

Let me start this by saying, I was incredibly disappointed the day that they canceled Prey 2, the originally intended sequel to the 2006 cult classic. However, early previews have described their time with the game as Bethesda’s take on the Dead Space franchise, and now I cannot wait. You control Morgan Yu, trying to make his way off of a space station and escape a violent alien race known as The Typhoon, sound familiar? Blessing it as the spiritual successor to System Shock, players will be given the ability to craft weapons and even mimic everyday items found around the space station to help make your way off. The truth is, the original Prey was a blast because it was a game that didn’t take itself too seriously, and gave the player the ability to feel like a badass; so far the newest entry of the same name looks to be much of the same, only better.

4- Crash Bandicoot N sane Trilogy

Release Date: June 30, 2017

Whether you grew up playing the games or have never controlled the bandicoot for yourself, one thing is for sure: Sony is finally giving the fans what they wanted. The N sane Trilogy is composed of the first 3 entries in the series, Crash Bandicoot, Cortex Strikes Back, & Warped. Remastered with updated graphics, PlayStation owners will get to re-experience the platformer since the last title had been released nearly 20 years ago. Crash will always hold a soft spot for me, since I can attribute these games in helping me learn the mechanics of basic games all those years ago. 

5- Tekken 7

Release Date: June 2, 2017

I will be the first to admit that I am not exactly “great” at fighting games, so I was a little questionable to put this game on the list. However, since it has been nearly 8 years since the previous entry, I thought it only right to highlight the upcoming title. With a focus on 1v1 combat, there are 2 new features being added to the game that will help shape a change in the flow of the game: Rage Art & Power Crush. The first of the two, Rage Art, will offer a new technique for each character that can damage up to 30% of a player’s health once their health bar is critical. The latter, Power Crush, will allow the player to continue dealing damage to their opponent even while they are being hit themselves. Needless to say, I cannot wait to get my hands on the game that pros were showing off at last year’s EVO tournament.