#15: The Next Pokemon Mobile Hit?

Today’s issue of DailyBits looks at a new Pokemon mobile game, we learn what games will be free on PlayStation Plus in July; and wonder whether Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem is still the best Lovecraft-inspired video game.

Top Story

Pokemon Masters is a new mobile game coming this Summer

Despite the Pokemon franchise being most at home on Nintendo consoles, it’s now got a sizeable fanbase on mobiles too thanks to the Pokemon Go phenomenon. The Pokemon Company and DeNA plan to capitalize on their mobile success with the announcement of Pokemon Masters – a brand new Pokemon game exclusively for mobile.

Pokemon Masters will be set in an all-new region called the island of Pasio, featuring 3-on-3 real-time battles where you need to join up with two other players to take on AI-driven characters. You can check out an introductory video for the game here.

Gotta pair ‘em off

The big change in Masters is that you’re not just finding and training Pokemon, then forcing them to fight to the death in horrifying arena battles: This time you’re creating a duo – trainer and Pokemon, which are referred to as sync pairs. Players can direct both characters, and there will be 65 sync pairs at launch.

There will also be some manner of story mode in addition to the multiplayer battles, and the new game will be free-to-play like Pokemon Go – or as the press release more accurately describes it, “free-to-start”. Pokemon Masters will launch on iOS and Android this summer, and the big question is whether it will take off like Pokemon Go did. Guess we’ll find out in a couple of months!

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz? ()

How many Alone in the Dark games have been released?

  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5

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

News Bits

We could be getting films and TV shows based on Myst… possibly

Village Roadshow Entertainment Group has acquired the rights to film and TV show adaptations of Myst, the popular adventure game from 1993. The group say they will take a “full-scale approach” to developing Myst across movies and television. This isn’t the first time this has been tried: Legendary, Hulu, Disney, and the ‘Mysteria Film Group’ all tried to adapt Myst for film, TV, and even theme parks – and all went nowhere. Don’t hold your breath, even if you’re desperate for a Myst movie after 25 years.

Here are the Free Games for PS Plus subscribers in July

Are you subscribed to PS Plus, like everyone who owns a PS4 really should be just for all the free stuff? Well, Sony has revealed the free games for the month of July. You can download Konami’s latest football title Pro Evolution Soccer 2019 and arcade racer Horizon Chase Turbo for free from July 2 until August 5. You’ve got until July 1 (Monday!!!) to download June’s offerings of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection and Sonic Mania – make sure you do, because they’re both great!

Daily Fact

Eternal Darkness is still the best Lovecraft-inspired videogame

Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem is a GameCube game from 2002, developed by Silicon Knights and published by Nintendo themselves. It was a psychological horror adventure game deeply inspired by the HP Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos – and it was fantastic! Since the latest Lovecraftian adventure The Sinking City out this week, it’s worth reminiscing about just how good Eternal Darkness was.

An adventure featuring several different playable characters across various time periods, from Roman times to present day, it offered an innovative combat system built around targeting enemies’ limbs – not unlike Dead Space. The story was compelling as well as unsettling, aided by a sanity system: If your sanity got too low, the game would start playing tricks on you – showing you enemies that aren’t there, flipping the room upside down, pretending to crash the game or change channel on your TV. Awesome!

Unfortunately, Eternal Darkness has never been re-released (not even on Nintendo systems) and all attempts to make a sequel fell flat. Silicon Knights went through a lot of problems in the mid-2000s, including the failure of Xbox 360 exclusive Too Human and a protracted lawsuit against Epic Games, which explains why the rumoured sequel Shadow of the Eternals went up in smoke. But that shouldn’t stop Nintendo from re-releasing the game on a newer platform! C’mon Nintendo, we want to play the best Lovecraft-inspired game again!

Daily Giveaway

Irony Curtain: From Matryoshka with Love (PC)

Time for another giveaway from your pals at Dailybits! Are you a fan of funny point-and-click adventures like Monkey Island, Sam & Max, and the Deponia series? Well, there’s a new one out now – comedy spy thriller Irony Curtain: From Matryoshka with Love – and we’ve got a Steam code to give out every day this week to one lucky winner on our active reader list!

“Take a look behind Irony Curtain in this satirical point-and-click inspired by the best works of LucasArts and Daedalic Entertainment! Experience the totalitarian Matryoshka through the eyes of Evan – a low-ranking, goofy journalist involuntarily pulled right into the middle of an espionage stand-off between two powers. Jump into the wacky spy adventure, uncover secrets of the bizarre communist country (and the powerful capitalist empire!), witness a story full of unpredictable twists and turns, and discover the true agenda of the mysterious Supreme Leader!”

Daily News

Xen is now playable in Half-Life remake Black Mesa

The official-yet-fan-made Half-Life 1 remake Black Mesa was first released 7 years ago, got picked up by Valve in 2015, and revamped with their support before launching on Early Access.

However, both free and commercial versions have been missing one crucial part of the Half-Life experience – Xen, the final chapter of the game. Since it’s also everyone’s least-favourite part of Half-Life, the team has spent the last few years completely remaking it to make it more, y’know, fun. Now, four years after Black Mesa went for sale missing a quarter of the game, Xen is nearly here – and it’s playable right now!

We are waiting for you, Gordon – in the test chamber

As revealed in a Steam community post, while the Xen chapter isn’t entirely finished just yet, the Black Mesa team are releasing a Technical Beta first to get feedback on the Xen maps – which basically means that if you own Black Mesa, you can try out 3 levels for free right now. The final Xen chapter will have a total of 19 maps, so this is only a taste! Check out the community post on how to install it.

The team promises that the full Xen experience will be available soon: “If you want the polished, complete Xen experience, you should wait. It won’t be long!” they say. We’ll believe it when we see it. With the Steam summer sale going on right now, Black Mesa is 60% off, so if you want to get in on it – no better time than now!

Link’s Awakening features “puzzle-solving” dungeon builder

One of our most eagerly anticipated titles this year is the remake of a Game Boy game from 1993: The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening will be out this September. Aside from being a charming and faithful re-imagining of the original, it will offer a new feature that has people rather excited – a dungeon builder!

The new mode appears to be the first step towards some sort of Zelda Maker to complement Mario Maker (oh, and remember that Mario Maker 2 was released this week). Series producer Eiji Aonouma has revealed a few tidbits about these ‘Chamber Dungeons’ and what they’re all about.

Can we build it? Yes we can

On Nintendo’s website, Aonuma explained that as you complete dungeons in the game, you’ll earn rooms that enable you to build your own dungeons, and that Dampe the gravedigger will task you with making specific creations.

Aonuma says, “I have wanted to include a feature like this in a Zelda game for a while, but I wanted to keep it simple and avoid making it overly complicated. So instead, we made it a puzzle-solving experience, where players can discover and complete the dungeon they arranged themselves.”

Kotaku spoke to Aonuma directly, and asked whether this new mode – if successful – could lead to a Zelda version of Mario Maker. He replied, “I can’t predict the future, but if people do love this idea of arranging dungeons, I’ll keep that in mind going forward.” So in other words, if you want a Zelda maker, buy Link’s Awakening, make some dungeons, and share all your wacky creations all over the internet. Then maybe we’ll get a make-your-own-Zelda game!

Weekly Rumours

It’s a bit of a quiet period for rumours about new games after E3 – fortunately, there are still rumours about games that have already been released, such as this spicy rumour for all you Mortal Kombat fans out there.

The Joker confirmed for Mortal Kombat 11 DLC?

Following the reveal of Mortal Kombat 11’s first set of DLC characters (Shang Tsung, Nightwolf, Sindel, Spawn and two guest characters), fans are left to speculate on who these two additional characters are. Well, it seems like the developers at NetherRealm Studios have started dropping hints on Twitter, leading people to believe the next guest character in the game will be Batman’s nemesis: The Joker.

Ed Boon, Creative Director at NetherRealm Studios, recently tweeted these lyrics: “Some people call me a cowboy…”. As you may know, these are from the song ‘The Joker’ by the Steve Miller Band. Besides, Mortal Kombat fans have known about characters like The Terminator thanks to a data leak from before Mortal Kombat 11 even officially launched. This data leak revealed a number of surprising characters, including The Joker. It would appear as though Ed Boon’s tweet has only confirmed what fans have been expecting for months now.

News Bits

PUBG is getting a single-player campaign from Call of Duty and Dead Space developers

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, the first big battle royale phenomenon before Fortnite came along and ate its lunch, keeps ticking along – and now it’s getting a single-player story campaign. It’s under development at a new studio led by Glen Schofield, the former vice president of Sledgehammer Games (Call of Duty) and Visceral Games (Dead Space). The studio is still in the process of being put together, so the game is probably not coming out any time soon.

Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

How many Alone in the Dark games have there been?

Answer: 7!

Since the Lovecraft-inspired The Sinking City was launched this week, we’re having a bit of a Cthulhu ritual here at Dailybits, and today we’re focusing on the most influential Lovecraftian game ever made – Alone in the Dark, the foundational work of the survival horror genre, and a big influence on Resident Evil. The first game in the series was released in 1992, but how many games have been added to it since then?

The answer is surprisingly small for such an influential series: seven, and that’s including the dubiously-named Jack in the Dark, a promotional Christmas game set between the first two titles.

Resident Evil effectively eclipsed the series, and it never managed to find its footing again after The New Nightmare disappointed, with the 2008 reboot failing to live up to its ambitions and the final entry, Illumination, proving more horrible than scary. And thus ended Edward Carnby’s adventures. A real shame!

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