Posts Tagged ‘2K Games’

Party Like It’s 1998: BioShock Burial At Sea’s Thief-Like Mode

By Nathan Grayson on February 28th, 2014.

how do you like my cosplay

Irrational has (mostly) sunk beneath the gaming industry’s ever-turbulent waves, but its spirit lives on. And by that, I mean the rather tumultuous work environment gave birth to one last piece of DLC before massive (and by many accounts, inevitable) layoffs struck. BioShock Infinite: Burial At Sea Episode One was a mixed bag, but Episode Two has a shot at going out on a high note. There are plenty of solid ingredients in place: we’re back in Rapture, we get to play as Elizabeth, and apparently we can entirely avoid killing anyone if we want to. 1998 mode is a bonus option with a heavy emphasis on stealth, and if some referential fake box art is to be believed, it’s rather heavily influenced by the original Thief.

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Sources: Bureau XCOM, BioShock 2 Dev ‘Essentially’ Closed

By Nathan Grayson on October 17th, 2013.

Oh boy. It is officially another One Of Those Days. The diabolical layoff stampede beast of certain doom has struck again, this time allegedly laying waste to the whole of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified and BioShock 2 developer 2K Marin. For now, 2K is only officially saying that there have been “staff reductions” at the oft-beleaguered studio, but sources close to the situation told RPS a significantly more dire tale.

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2K Yanks GFWL From Bioshock 2, Brings DLC To Steam

By Craig Pearson on October 4th, 2013.


Small victories are important. Games For Windows Live has been minced into a fine paste and sent off to a major supermarket chain as a horse meat substitute, but the effects of it are still being felt. Most games are still saddled with the client, and it takes an act of will on the part of the publishers to swab that canker sore. 2K did that to BioShock 2 last night. All traces of the client have been yanked out of the Steam version, with the publisher adding joypad and Big Picture support in, as well as bringing the DLC to Steam for you to buy (so it’s not totally altruistic). It’s the first time Minerva’s Den can be bought anywhere but the GFWL marketplace.
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An Alien-Focused XCOM? Firaxis Talks Possibilities

By Nathan Grayson on September 27th, 2013.

I recently had the chance to chat with XCOM: The Enemy Within senior game designer Ananda Gupta, and I was immediately faced with a crushing dilemma. Adam had done his job too well in a previous interview and discussed everything (XCOM-related) ON EARTH. I was stumped. I was about to hand in both my hands and my ability to ask questions to the Intergalactic Journalism Police when it hit me: if Earth’s no longer an option, then the only way out is up. Space! So Gupta and I chatted about aliens and the possibility of an XCOM campaign starring said nefarious extraterrestrials, and it was absolutely wonderful. [Warning - some XCOM: Enemy Unknown spoilers ahead.]

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Awww: Civilization Online Korea-Only For Now

By Nathan Grayson on August 9th, 2013.

The world really is a small place if your knowledge of geography is limited to this picture

Against all odds, Civilization Online – a completely non-turn-based, non-strategy MMO in which you play as a glorified grunt in a grand game of global conquest – sounds super fascinating. Its creators are calling the civ-on-civ sandbox “a big social experiment,” with leaders kicking and fighting their way up the ranks by any means necessary. Meanwhile, players can collectively choose whether to pursue war, peace, technology, or any other number of paths to server-wide victory – at which point everything resets. What a concept, right? Oh, but there’s a catch: for now, XL Games’ bonkers ambitious reimagining of Sid Meier’s legendary brainchild is sticking with an isolationist foreign policy. Yep: it’s a Korea-only release.

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OK Then, Pt 2: There Is A Civilization MMO Now

By Nathan Grayson on August 8th, 2013.

I want to play as a needlessly large statue

SO MANY STRANGE ANNOUNCEMENTS TODAY. What’s next? A Farming Simulator FPS? A Call of Duty art game? OK, OK, onto the actual news: Civilization is advancing into the MMO age, but not as, say, a larger-scale turn-based strategy. No, in Civilization Online, you play as a single character – one churning gear in a civilization’s massive machine of politics, science, and war. It’s not just a traditional MMO with historical trappings, though. Each server can and will end. Once one of the competing civilizations meets a victory condition, almost everything resets. The resulting sandbox of workers, fighters, researchers, and leaders, then, has to pull together or risk getting trampled by the inexorable march of history.

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Some: The Bureau: XCOM Declassified Footage

By Jim Rossignol on July 26th, 2013.


Earlier in the week Cara reported in on her time with The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, and gave it Jeff Goldblum. Now though you can supplement these frivolous editorialisations with your own eyes-on experience, because the special news investigators of VG247 have posted footage of the same sequence that Cara played, and you can see that below.
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The Bureau: XCOM Declassified’s Story Declassified

By Nathan Grayson on July 18th, 2013.

Poor guy, cried right through his mascara. Then he started crying mascara.

Maybe I’m in the minority here, but I actually think the original concept for what eventually went on to become The Bureau: XCOM Declassified would’ve made for a pretty cool game… if it wasn’t called XCOM. 1960s X-Files? A story that lures players into its irresistible green glow with both unrelenting mystery and the social/political tensions of the time? I would’ve played that. Don’t get me wrong: I’m incredibly glad that XCOM is back to being all about tactics, but this cut-scene-tastic Bureau trailer just feels generic. Everybody has neat hats, but we may as well be watching Commander Shepard (the boring vanilla male version) get levitated into the air by some unknowable alien force. Old timey hats or not, this just feels a bit, er, old hat.

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Censory Perception: The Bureau – XCOM Declassified

By Adam Smith on June 21st, 2013.

I love XCOM, X-COM and pretty much any variant thereof. Heck, I’d probably buy X-MOC, a spoof version in which the invading aliens are broad parodies of Z-list celebrities, provided the combat was turn-based and the deaths were permanent. The idea of an alien invasion in a period setting that permits excessive use of fedoras and chain-smoking agents is also pleasing to my aesthetic sensibilities, so it’s odd that The Bureau: XCOM Declassified isn’t causing me to polish my shiniest shoes in preparation for good some old-fashioned investigation and elimination. Like the evidence of extraterrestrials that the agency is so keen to censor or destroy, the footage of the game in action is perplexing, if not outright alarming. It looks like XCOM but where is the ‘end turn’ button and why do these agents have so much techno-magic? Take a look.

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Brogue Agents: The Bureau: XCOM Declassified Footage

By Craig Pearson on May 13th, 2013.

I’m really sorry about this. I’m about to ruin XCOM for you. Are you ready? To the tune of Sex Bomb, by Tom Jones:

XCOM, XCOM, you’re my XCOM
And baby you can turn me on

There, now you can all share in the pain. I’ve had that in my head for the past half-hour, after watching VG247‘s sneakily snuck video of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified. What was once simply known as XCOM and was an FPS is now a third-person cover-based shooter that looks a whole lot more like an XCOM game of yore.

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The Truth Is Somewhere: XCOM Shooter Videos, Site Gone

By Nathan Grayson on April 16th, 2013.

Quietly – ever so quietly – XCOM: The Game Of The Other, Very Different Game has poofed into Duke-Nukem-scented vapors. It’s touched down and carved crop circles into the fields of our imaginations a couple times, but not without 2K Marin knocking it out of its bicycle basket and dragging it back into the deepest reaches of some underground testing facility. Matters, I imagine, were only complicated when XCOM: Enemy Unknown defied 2K’s expectations by being incredibly well-received, leaving the idea of an XCOM shooter in an even fuzzier limbo. That in mind, it’s not entirely surprising to see the repeatedly revamped reboot suddenly vanish without a trace – especially when another revamp may well be the culprit.

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Bioshock’s Ken Levine Talks Stories, Systems & Science

By Jim Rossignol on February 1st, 2013.


As if we hadn’t already heard enough from the man who steers the Irrational Zeppelin through developmental waters, Jim also had a long chat with Ken Levine, the creator of Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite. Read on for thoughts that span the sadness of cholera, the mystery of condiments, the joy of turn-based historical war, and some stuff about a game set in a flying city.

I’ve marked out some mild spoilers towards the end of the piece. These are non-specific discussions of the plot themes, but you can decide whether to skip.
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Patriotic: Bioshock Infinite’s City In The Sky (Trailer)

By Jim Rossignol on January 31st, 2013.


Trailers are like dreams. You can’t really touch them or play with them in a way that is actually of any use, but they happen anyway, and when they’re over you’re left with a lingering feeling that they were trying to tell you something. I don’t know why I dreamed about eating marshmallows that morning when my pillows had disappeared, but I do know that Irrational want us to take note of what they’re trying to build with their setting for Bioshock Infinite: Columbia, a miraculous flying city at the turn of the 19th century. Here be philosophy and politics, there mechanical monsters and stuff on fire. There’s really no precarious uncertainty here, what they are trying to tell is that the expectations for this game should be sky high, and when giant metal ravens come for you, it’s time to find ammunition for the rocket launcher. Facts, you see, are super-true.

Bioshock Infinite will fall to Earth on March 26th.
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