“Embracing The Pushback”

The week is over and with it, the onslaught of video game news has come to a close. Rainbow Six Siege announced its delay, The Taken King teased all the big changes it’s bringing to Destiny, Mass Effect Andromeda got new details, and an Xbox exec’ made some lofty comments. Here’s everything worth knowing from this week in gaming news.

  • Rainbow Six Moves To December

R6SAs of this week we’ve got one less big hitter to worry about, come October. Ubisoft announced its anticipated upcoming shooter, Rainbow Six Siege, has shifted to a release of December 1, 2015. The decision to push the game back a few months was a result of fan feedback, Ubisoft detailed in a blog post.

“This wasn’t an easy decision, but based on the feedback we’ve received, and based on our own internal tests, we felt there are adjustments and improvements we can make, including improving the co-op experience across all game modes, weapon and gadget balancing, as well as menu and interface navigation. We’re taking a little more time to make these changes, and we think it’s the right call.”

I’m always in support of delays in the name of higher quality, and Rainbow Six Siege is no exception. In fact, choosing to delay the team-based tactical shooter gives me more hope for the reinvigorated take on the franchise. Getting out of the packed month of October and polishing up key gameplay factors may turnout paramount to Rainbow Six Siege’s success. The previously announced closed beta available for those who preordered is still coming, and will begin as previously scheduled on September 24. Siege’s multiplayer intentions have me interested and Ubisoft’s high hopes for Rainbow Six Siege ensures their dedication, but I still remain cautiously optimistic. All will become more clear when I finally get to spend some time with the game, before it’s now December release.

  • How Taken King Will Reshape Destiny

DestinyDuring a Taken King livestream Bungie held early this week, a plethora of major changes coming to Destiny via next month’s large expansion, were detailed. The expansion will be the largest addition of content the game has ever seen, with system overhauls and big gameplay refinements. The stream was packed with reveals, some of which look to fix problems that plagued the original game. The changes are too extensive to cover here, but these are a few of the standouts. The expansion will become available at level 25 and players with characters under said level, are given a special item called a “Spark of Light” that will boost you to the required level. Ghosts’ now have more than aesthetic values, sporting the ability to find spirit bloom that upgrades the intellect, discipline and strength level. The new light level system is a combination of the character’s attack and defense from each and every equipped item. Inventory space will be doubled for weapons and armor, now sitting at 72 slots. Bounties can now be collected without returning to the tower and each player can now hold up to 32 quests in their inventory. The stream offered further insight into the substantial changes The Taken King will bring to destiny in the coming month. Two more live events are planned for the coming weeks, both of which will reveal more about the upcoming expansion. As someone who fell out of touch with Destiny only months after launch, The Taken King’s beckoning call just might be enough for me to make my return come September 15. If you missed the stream you can catchup here.

  • Mass Effect Andromeda’s New Story & Combat Details

Mass EffectThe mysterious Mass Effect Andromeda got a few tidbits of details this week, with BioWare also confirming its plans to reveal more information before the year comes to a close; but not anytime soon. Most of the details were brought to attention via Twitter, where Senior Development Director, Chris Wynn, replied to a number of fans’ questions revolving around Andromeda. Insight into the game’s story and combat were given in response to a fan asking if the game’s combat will be like its predecessor. Wynn stated, “your assumption is a safe one. There are some new elements that make it more dynamic, but overall similar feel.” Wynn went on to stress the game wouldn’t feature any familiar faces from previous Mass Effect games as, “Story-wise, it wouldn’t make much sense.” In regards to connections to the trilogy, Wynn said, “there are plenty of non-character connections. Races, stuff like the Mako. Fans will feel at home.” Wynn’s various comments ultimately confirm most of what we were already led to assume, but nonetheless get me excited for what the project has in store. Andromeda is set to launch fall 2016 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

  • Xbox One Is Doing Things That Can’t Be Done On PS4

Xbox OneXbox executive Kudo Tsunoda, took some shots at the PS4 and other competing platforms this week in an interview, saying the Xbox One has, “a lot more going on” than its competition. Speaking to GameIndustry International, Tsunoda talks about how the Xbox One’s implementation of backwards compatibility, along with cross-play and cross-buy, will give the console the traction it needs to catch up.

“It’s a really unique value that only we can offer. You still need very gamer-focused values, but there’s lots of things you can do with our technology. We’ve really got a lot more going on [than our competitors]. We’re doing things that can’t be done on any other console. There’s a reason we’re able to put on two shows of content together. We’ve got seven exclusives coming this holiday, and then everything coming in 2016. Not just the blockbusters, but the ID@Xbox games, the indie games. We’re giving people a lot more.”

There is certainly truth to Tsunoda’s comments, with a few of his points really hitting home. Microsoft is flaunting its somewhat extensive, exclusive lineup for this holiday season, continually reiterating the fact that it trumps Sony’s sparse offerings. Though Tsunoda’s confidence may be a bit challenging to backup as of now, the future could prove different. With backward’s compatible functionality making its way to Xbox this fall, and cross-play and cross-buy options slowly making their way to becoming a reality, Microsoft is no doubt headed in the right direction. Sony’s console is still far in the lead–boasting its massive install base that only continues to rise–though if Microsoft keeps playing their cards right, this could eventually become a close race.

To keep up with my thoughts on all things video games, along with plenty of other shenanigans, you can follow me on Twitter @BraxHaugen.