#103: Bioshock Creator’s Next Game An Immersive Sim

TODAY: Be the next Doctor in VR game Edge of Time — More Batman rumours, but still no announcement — New and improved competitive mode coming to Pokémon Go

Top Story

Ken Levine’s next game will be an immersive sim

We haven’t heard much from Ken Levine – most famous for creating the Bioshock series – since Bioshock Infinite was released in 2013. Ghost Story Games, which was formed from the core team of Irrational Games in 2014, has just posted a job listing for a cinematic narrative scripter that hints at what their next game is: “A creatively ambitious project in the immersive sim genre.”

Always a man, a lighthouse, a city and a long wait

This is not exactly a surprise, since Levine’s games tend to be immersive sims – but this time around there are lot more immersive sims in the market! The success of the BioShock games prompted a lot of imitation and elaboration on the immersive sim design philosophy.

While it’s not exactly news that Ghost Story Games is working on something, any sign of life from the studio and evidence that their work is going somewhere is very welcome. The team is still relatively small for a AAA game – around 40 people – so we will most likely have a wait a while longer to see anything concrete.

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?

Which of these villains were cut from Batman Arkham Asylum?

  • Catwoman
  • Mad Hatter
  • Two-Face
  • The Penguin

The answer will be revealed at the end of this issue!

News Bits

Doctor Who: The Edge of Time launches next month

This is the news Doctor Who fans have been waiting for! Doctor Who: The Edge of Time – a VR game combining action, adventure and mind-bending puzzles – finally has a firm release date, namely November 12th. The game will reference classic episodes from the entire run of the 55-year-old series, and feature Jodie Whittaker voicing The Doctor, and Nicholas Briggs as the Daleks.

Doctor Who: The Edge Of Time arrives on PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift, Oculus Quest, HTC Vive and HTC Vive Cosmos on November 12th.

Root Letter sequel headed west

Root Film, the sequel to Kadokawa Games’ visual novel Root Letter, is coming to PlayStation 4 and Switch in North America and Europe. Investigate another murder in the Shimane prefecture by noting keywords during conversations, deducing their significant and then confronting characters, as well as seeing the same events from multiple perspectives. Not that you’d know from watching the announcement trailer!

Daily Fact

The best Doctor Who game was free – and still not very good

Doctor Who is extremely popular, but the good Doctor hasn’t starred in particularly many videogames – and the few that exist are either awful or tonally inappropriate platformers. The most promising attempt was Doctor Who: The Adventure Games, which had a lot going for it: It focused on puzzles and storytelling, it had the full backing of the BBC as well as several actors and writers from the show and was developed by the British studio behind the Broken Sword series.

What could possibly go wrong? Well, the decision to give the game away for free, for starters. It forced the team to rush through development on a shoestring budget, which admittedly is very typical of Doctor Who, but not exactly a recipe for success in game development. The game was also aimed more at Doctor Who fans than gamers, so the puzzles were all pretty simple.

All in all, Doctor Who: The Adventure Games came out okay – but they should have been great! Let’s hope The Edge of Time fares better.

Daily News

Could Arkham Legacy be on the way?

According to tweets by New_WabiSabi, the next Arkham game will be named Batman: Arkham Legacy, and feature new playable members of the Wayne family. There are only two tweets, providing very little information: The first tweet simply states “Arkham legacy??”, while the second tweet posted a minute later says that “The stuff about the playable family seems to be legit”.

Why exactly should you be trusting a random Twitter user with an anime avatar? Well, this particular anime avatar’d rando predicted a number of E3 2019 announcements, and was apparently threatened with legal action by Nintendo to discourage leaks.

Could the entire Bat-Family be playable in Arkham Legacy?

Fans expected the next Batman game to be revealed at Sony’s recent State of Play event after a series of cryptic tweets by Warner Bros Interactive employees ahead of the show, but alas! The last big event of the year is Geoff Keighley’s Game Awards 2019 in December, so maybe there’s one last chance for a big reveal? Time will tell!

Will Gears 6 take inspiration from The Handmaid’s Tale?

Aryan Hanbeck, art director on Gears 5, recently appeared on the Wassup Conversations podcast hosted by Hamidreza Nikoofar, and may have dropped some hints on the future direction of the series. As reported by IGN, Hanbeck is thoroughly impressed with the art direction of The Handmaid’s Tale, and is urging his team to watch it.

Discussing the subject of inspiration, Hanbeck mentioned a number of games and the Hulu show: “One thing – the guys here will probably laugh if they see this – but I’ve been telling all the artists nonstop to go watch Handmaid’s Tale… The composition, the color, and just the cinematography and symbolism is just off the charts,” Hanbeck says. “So, I watched that and I’m like, ‘Wow we gotta find a way to get more of this stuff in Gears 6.’”

It’s never too early to start talking about Gears 6

Since Gears 5 was only just released, it’s a bit early to start speculating about what the next game in the series will be about – the comments made in the podcast episode are clearly not an official announcement of Gears 6: Handmaid’s Revenge. Fans are still enjoying Gears 5, and news of what The Coalition are up to next will definitely emerge in due time.

News Bits

Darksiders Genesis for PC and Stadia

Publisher THQ Nordic and developer Airship Syndicate have announced that Darksiders Genesis will arrive on PC and Google Stadia on December 9th, while the console versions of the game will be delayed until February 14th next year.

Darksiders Genesis is a prequel to the first game in the series, and offers a whole new spin on the Darksiders universe, featuring a top-down perspective and Diablo-style ARPG combat and looting. Check out the most recent trailer to see what’s new.

Pokémon GO introducing GO Battle League in 2020

Niantic has announced a new Pokémon Go feature that allows players to battle each other via a global online matching system: The GO Battle League. There isn’t much information available yet, except that Trainers will have to walk a lot to earn their entry spot.

According to the blog post, the team at Niantic hopes “this feature will make the Pokémon GO battling experience more competitive and accessible to more Trainers.” The GO Battle League is a welcome improvement to the Trainer Battles system, and is scheduled for release in early 2020. Expect more information from a Dev Insights video very soon.

Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

Which of these villains were cut from Batman Arkham Asylum?

Answer: Mad Hatter!

Batman: Arkham Asylum is one of the finest games ever made, and an excellent way to experience the Batman universe – but it’s missing a lot of the Caped Crusader’s most iconic foes. While most of them are mentioned over the course of the game and the game ends with Batman heading off to battle Two-Face, not that many actually appear. Even The Riddler is only present as a disembodied voice.

But there were supposed to be more! Jervis Tetch, the mind-controlling Alice in Wonderland-obsessed Mad Hatter, was meant make an appearance, but got cut. He was going to appear in a Wonderland-themed maze inside the asylum, which was meant to entertain children visiting the facility. Unfortunately, writer Paul Dini couldn’t work out how to fit all this with the rest of the game, so it ended on the cutting floor.

Weekly Giveaway

Europa Universalis: The Price of Power Board Game Giveaway

Europa Universalis: The Price of Power brings Paradox Interactive’s award-winning Europea Universalis series back to the table top.

The Kickstarter campaign launched today – and has already reached its goal of raising £21,266 – so we’ve teamed up with Aegir Games to celebrate both their successful campaign and the 100th issue of DailyBits.

We’re giving away a copy of this board game to one lucky member of our community when it launches later on next year. You can enter into the giveaway by using the widget here, and we’ll announce the winner in a week’s time. Good luck!

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