Assuming the new season of Black Mirror hasn't scared you into unplugging everything, there's plenty to watch this week. While Westworld has finally started to show a few hints of where we're going in this fantastical experience, The Walking Dead came back with a thud or two. The World Series is ready to roll, as either the Chicago Cubs or Cleveland's baseball team will end a long championship dry spell, and this week the NBA regular season starts.
Titanfall 2 brings its mech/shooter action to multiple platforms this time around, and Skyrim Special Edition brings us back to a better-looking version of Tamriel. On streaming, we have Werner Herzog's volcano exploration flick Into the Inferno. Look after the break to check out each day's highlights, including trailers and let us know what you think (or what we missed).
Just as we saw with Fallout 4 last year, Bethesda is hoping to amp you up for Dishonored 2 by making it seem more real with a live-action trailer. The two-minute piece is narrated by Emily, the kidnapped princess you rescued in the first game, who lays out her drive for revenge like Game of Throne's Arya Stark. They killed her mother; took her kingdom; and framed her friend (Corvo, the bodyguard assassin who returns for another round of fun) for murder. Now she's back to take what's hers.
Happy Monday. Over the weekend, we sampled smart-refrigerated wine, looked back on 15 years of iPod, and asked Amazon's AI to fact-check politicians for us. Coming up this week: Apple's MacBook event, some news from Microsoft, and a lot of companies reporting on their quarterly earnings -- if you're all about gross revenue and such.
Still not sold on VR? Got a PS4? But still not sure? Then you should probably test it out before laying down the hundreds of dollars (or pounds) the peripheral costs. But you probably shouldn't have to pay to do so. But that's exactly what UK retailer Game is doing, charging £5 (just over $6) for ten minutes of neck-craning and open-jawed gaming. You can also pay £15 for 30 minutes. Deal?
Source: Game (Twitter)
Does something look slightly off with picture you see above? Don't worry, that's on purpose. Adult Swim Games and Fire Face are launching the surreal puzzler Small Radios Big Televisions on November 8th for PC and PS4, and its hook is a time-traveling cassette deck that lets you "reconstruct the past" of abandoned factories through tapes. Only here, reality is just as fragile as the tapes in question -- expect plenty of distortion, discoloration and other glitches that could play havoc with your head. Complete them and you'll find retrowave tunes from Owen Deery (also available on Bandcamp) as a reward. Given Adult Swim's solid track record with releasing off-kilter titles like Headlander and Westerado, it could be worth a try just to see how well this analog-meets-digital premise turns out.
For as long as I can remember, I've dreamed of a computer that didn't exist: something that could get me through the work day but also transform into a gaming powerhouse at home. It's taken decades, but that old fantasy is finally starting to coalesce into reality. Laptops from Alienware and MSI can be bought with an external graphics dock that lends them the power of a desktop-class GPU. Earlier this year, Razer even made a bid for my dream laptop -- but its Blade Stealth stumbled with middling battery life and by launching before its companion GPU dock hit the market. Recently the company updated the ultraportable with more storage and memory, a faster processor, a higher-capacity battery and the graphics extender that makes it so special: the Razer Core. Now that we finally have the complete package, it's time to revisit the Stealth and see if it makes good on its promise.
Letter from the Editor
Welcome to the very first edition of The Morning After, Engadget's revamped newsletter. First, I'd like to congratulate you for subscribing to what is undoubtedly the greatest newsletter you'll ever read. Thanks are also in order for giving us some of your precious inbox real estate each day. You're hearing from me, Editor in Chief Michael Gorman, because this is the Weekend Edition -- in which I'll be putting context around the most interesting and important stories we published over the past week. Come Monday at 6 AM ET, and every weekday after, the daily version will hit your inbox with summaries of the biggest stories from the previous day, delivered with Engadget's trademark wit and insight. Now that we have that out of the way, let's dive into the week that was...
Nintendo might have crushed some fans' dreams with its Famitsu interview. The company told the popular Japanese gaming magazine that its upcoming hybrid console won't be able to play Wii U discs or 3DS cartridges. It's unclear if the Switch won't be able to run digital games either, but if you were hoping to play your favorite 3DS titles on a 50-inch screen just for the heck of it, you may want to temper your expectations.
Source: Shuhei Yoshida (Twitter)
Look, we get it. Sometimes it's hard to keep up on all the latest happenings in the world of tech. That's why Engadget has a newsletter that delivers the top stories of the day directly to your inbox. Sure, it's functional, but honestly, it doesn't live up to our standards. So, Saturday morning will see the launch of our new and improved newsletter: The Morning After.
There was a no more exciting time to be a peripheral fan than 1999. For me, someone who loved the custom controls of the arcades, the Dreamcast was a fantasy. Its Visual Memory Unit (VMU) was a memory card with a screen that slotted into the controller -- and a micro console in its own right. Games like Power Stone and Seaman let you load mini games onto the VMU to play on the go, but more interesting was its dual-screen potential.
Source: Ryan Salamanda (Twitter)
Adventure and role-playing games have always focused on telling stories, and that tradition has permeated into almost every other genre. Whether linear plots, or branching, adaptive tales, developers are putting story everywhere. And just as the technology powering games is evolving, so too are the narratives within them. One game is pushing forward into entirely new territory: City of the Shroud.
Partially funded by a small-scale Kickstarter campaign earlier this year, City of the Shroud is being developed by Abyssal Arts, a small team strewn across the US and UK, with some assistance from Japan. It's a hard game to categorize. It's an RPG, yes, but it blends tactical elements from X-Com, The Banner Saga and Final Fantasy Tactics with a real-time combat system that borrows from classic fighting games.
It's been more than nine years since Half-Life 2: Episode Two came out and, yeah, that cliffhanger still stings. Thankfully, Microsoft's Larry Hryb has announced that The Orange Box is now available on the Xbox One via backwards compatibility. That gives everyone the chance to soften the blow of Valve's contempt for its audience by once again replaying five of the company's best games. The legendary bundle combines Half-Life 2, its two episodic sequels, Team Fortress Two and some rando game about physics puzzles that'll probably never take off. It's not just The Orange Box that's now available for your nostalgia, since Galaga Legions and Joe Danger 2: The Movie are also now available.
If you've shotgunned and boot-stomped your way through the new Doom campaign (and if you haven't yet, you should) fear not: Bethesda has plenty more demon hunting ready to go. The developer released "Free Update 4" this week, which comes with a nifty arcade mode. Every gun, suit and "Rune" upgrade is unlocked from the start, giving you the best possible edge in the battlefield. The aim is to blitz through the "streamlined" game in the shortest time possible, avoiding enemy attacks and racking up multipliers. Points are rewarded for butt-kicking your opponents, leading to a final score that you can compare with friends.
About a year ago, Blizzard revealed a chat service for all of its Battle.net multiplayer games, starting with Overwatch. Last month it killed the Battle.net name altogether, saying multiplayer support is a "normal expectation" that no longer requires its own service. Now, the World of Warcraft maker has rolled out Blizzard Voice, a chat service that works across all its multiplayer titles.
Source: Blizzard (Twitter)
The Oatmeal's Exploding Kittens project took Kickstarter by storm and raised an impressive $8.8 million. Now, the online sensation is back on the crowdfunding platform with another card game, and it's all about building monsters that can eat horribly hairy, axe-wielding, laser-toting infants. Matthew Ingram (that's The Oatmeal's artist's name) has teamed up with his Exploding Kittens collaborator Elan Lee yet again to create Bears vs Babies. The project is already a hit after having raised $1.3 million, but that amount's bound to grow with 27 days left to the campaign.