Digital E3 Returns with Backing, GTAV on Game Pass
Today: Modders have started plying their trade on Kingdom Hearts — It Takes Two is a wildly inventive co-operative game about love — Resident Evil Re:Verse six player deathmatch beta open on Steam
Big names sign up for online E3 event
This year’s online E3 event earns the support of Nintendo, Microsoft and Ubisoft, turning COVID-19 into an unexpected boon for the ailing trade show.
Capcom, Konami, Take-Two, Warner Bros. and Koch Media have also signed up for the event, although heavy hitters like Sony, EA, Activision Blizzard, Sega, Bandai Namco and Square Enix have decided to give the show a pass.
E3 evolved:"We are evolving this year's E3 into a more inclusive event, but will still look to excite the fans with major reveals and insider opportunities that make this event the indispensable center stage for video games,”said Entertainment Software Association CEO Stanley Pierre-Louis.
Summer vibes: E3 2021 will take place between June 12th and 15th, so there is still time for more publishers to sign on. It will be the first purely digital E3 event, aimed at consumers rather than media. It's an opportunity for ESA to show that they can add more value than simply renting a space and charging per square foot.
Which item unlocks the inverted castle in Symphony of the Night?
b) Holy Glasses
d) Gambler Glasses
The answer will be revealed at the bottom of today's issue. Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss what the answer could be.
FACT OF THE DAY
You might feel a tiny prick
IO Interactive’s classic Hitman 2: Silent Assassin had no icons on its health or detection bars: They were just sitting there on the screen, and you had to watch them fill up or deplete to figure out what they represented.
The original non-lethal anaesthetic weapon in the bald wonder’s arsenal was a rag with chloroform, but it was changed to the slightly more clinical hypodermic needle in the final version.
Rockstar's endlessly popular behemoth Grand Theft Auto V is coming to Xbox Game Pass on April 8th, alongside a few sports games and Zombie Army 4. The mobile app's touch screen input will also get an overhaul, and over 50 titles will be playable without a controller.
Grand Theft Auto V (Cloud and Console) — April 8th
Zombie Army 4: Dead War (Cloud, Console, and PC) ID@Xbox — April 8th
Disneyland Adventures (Cloud) — April 8th
Rush: A Disney/Pixar Adventure (Cloud) — April 8th
NHL 21 (Console) EA Play — April 12
Rain on Your Parade (Cloud, Console, and PC) ID@Xbox — April 15th
Pathway (PC) ID@Xbox — April 15
MLB The Show 21 (Cloud and Console) — April 20th
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PC modding begins for Kingdom Hearts
Kingdom Hearts is finally out for PC on Epic Game Store, and fans have already started fiddling with the game. Textures are being swapped, items are being replaced – not even code is safe from the modders.
The top mod for Kingdom Hearts III unlocks ReMind abilities progressively as you play the game rather than dumping them all in your lap at the very end. Another popular mod tweaks damage scaling, particularly for level 1 characters.
Exclusive: The whole series appeared on PC on March 30th – exclusively on Epic Game Store – including Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5+2.5 ReMIX, Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, Kingdom Hearts III + ReMind and the rhythm-action spin-off Kingdom Hearts Melody of Memory.
It Takes Two Review
Cooperative sleeper hit dares to be different at every opportunity
It Takes Two is one of those games you just don't see coming. Hazelight Studios' inventive and ambitious co-op 3D platformer is full of surprises, and it's hard to say much about it without spoiling the fun.
The story begins as May and Cody are about to complete their divorce, but somehow end up trapped in their daughter's hand-made dolls. The estranged couple must learn to work together again to escape their predicament, aided by their marriage counsellor Dr. Hakim – a talking book about love.
May and Cody must make their way through magical world hidden just out of sight around their house. Each level is built around a theme and presents a dizzying array of gameplay styles ranging from flying sections to 2D beat'em-up challenges. The first few hours pit you against militaristic squirrels, a rabid teddy bear and a sadistic hoover – and that's just the beginning.
There is also room for quieter moments between the more or less competitive minigames. Exploring the environments rewards you with plenty of surprises like ice-skating in the Christmas world, the ferris wheel at the circus and other little activities. They help pace the relentless action of the game proper, and helps develop the characters.
While the story serves well for framing the action, it remains the game's weakest link. The storytelling is fun and frantic, but also wants to be profound and tackle a difficult subject like divorce. Unfortunately, most of the problematic emotions the story tries to deal with are played for laughs by Dr. Hakim, who is just a little bit too snide and on the nose to do the subject justice.
Fortunately, the game itself is plenty enjoyable: Most of the action outfits Cody and May with some kind of tools or contraptions that requires them to cooperate. An early example sees Cody outfitted with nails and May with a hammer, but things quickly escalate to the spectacular: Weapons that combine with spectacularly destructive results, and tools that let the couple manipulate time and space.
The onslaught of new and exciting ideas never lets up for the game's generous duration, and while the story's more poignant moments may not land all that gracefully, It Takes Two is amazingly inventive and sets a new standard for co-operative multiplayer games.
It's a game that brings its players closer together. Whether or not the game manages to say something meaningful about relationships is less important than the fact that it manages to be a meaningful shared experience.
Inventive and constantly entertaining
Lots to discover outside the story
Never settles for one playstyle
Story doesn't do the subject matter justice
It Takes Two is available now on the PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X, PS4 and PS5. Publisher EA Games kindly provided a Xbox Series X review code to DailyBits for free for the purposes of this review.
Which item unlocks the inverted castle in Symphony of the Night?
ANSWER: Holy Glasses!
Symphony of the Night appears to end on a bittersweet note: You defeat Richter Belmont, and restore peace to the land. But you can also save him by breaking the curse that turns him against you! All you need is the Holy Glasses item, which Maria will give you if you equip the Silver Ring and Gold Ring in the Clock Room.
Put on your glasses during the fight, and you can see an orb floating around Richter. Destroy the orb without killing Richter in the process, and you will break the curse. This unlocks the Inverted Castle and allows you to defeat Dracula properly. The Inverted Castle might not be a surprise any longer, but it was pretty mind-blowing back in the day and helped establish Symphony of the Night as a true classic of the genre.
Today's issue of DailyBits was written by Gavin Herman, Nick Akerman, Erlend Grefsrud, Simon Priest, and Jamie Davey. If you have any feedback or news tips for the team, please email us!