Minecraft is coming to PS3, PS4, and PS Vita

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Sony fans rejoice! The rumours are true. Minecraft is indeed coming to PS3, PS4, and Vita. We’re delighted to spead the Minecraft love to a new family of consoles.

As previously confirmed, Minecraft is also coming to Xbox One. There’s no need to feel left out, no matter your choice of future console.

We’re not quite ready to share dates and details yet, but as soon as we are I’ll get them posted.

Have a good day everyone!

Owen – @bopogamel


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The Road to Battlefield 4: Levolutionizing the Battle


In the third post in the “Road to Battlefield 4” blog series, we tackle Levolution, a natural extension of Battlefield and the freedom to play how you want to play. We’re taking unique multiplayer experiences, map evolution, and destruction to a new level.

If you followed our E3 live stream, you saw us bring down the Siege of Shanghai skyscraper a dozen times in multiplayer. But Levolution is much bigger and broader than simply destroying something. It’s a wide-ranging concept, a collection of ideas and experiences that make Battlefield truly great. In this blog post, learn how Levolution changes the water from calm to raging storm, how visibility goes from clear skies to dark overcast, and how every move on the Battlefield creates ripple effects that make every match unique.

Here to give you the latest details on Levolution in Battlefield 4 is Lead Multiplayer Designer Thomas Andersson. He’ll take you from its initial conception to how it unfolds in-game, and everything in between.

Creating Levolution

Ending up with the game-changing concept that is Levolution was a long and iterative design process for us. Going into Battlefield 4 two years or so ago, we first explored a concept that we internally dubbed “Timeline”. The thought back then was that a background timer would alter the multiplayer levels and take it into different stages automatically. Basically, map-changing events would trigger automatically no matter what the players did in the match.

But we soon realized that players much prefer manual control to as great an extent as possible – so we steered down the path of maximizing player interaction with our dynamic content instead. The clearest feedback came from all of the players who tried to blow up the tower in Caspian Border that we talked about in the first blog post.

The name was then changed to Levolution. This is a good opportunity for me to assume full responsibility for the name. Although people think it’s a marketing buzz word, it was created as an internal communication tool during development to – in a very simple way – explain the vision of changing the level as you played. It’s served us well.

Unique Experiences Matter

Bringing Levolution to multiplayer has been key for us. Personally, I think it’s fantastic how our fans have spent more than one billion hours in Battlefield 3. We’re hoping to top that with Battlefield 4 multiplayer. We especially hope that you’ll find something to enjoy every time you play, whether it’s a small change or a large change you make to a map.

If you’ve been playing Battlefield, you know we pride ourselves on the dynamic “Only in Battlefield” moments that happen in multiplayer games. With Levolution, we wanted to give players maps that are highly thematic and have impressive “wow” moments in and of themselves. People play these maps countless times over the years, and we want you to be able to enjoy them for a long time. If you’ve seen our multiplayer trailer or followed our E3 and gamescom livestreams, you’ve had a taste of what you can do with our dynamic content.

There’s much more to discover.

Changing the Game

The big events like the skyscraper in Siege of Shanghai are something we refer to as a set-piece. Characteristically, Levolution set-pieces bring those awe-inspiring single-player events into multiplayer.

The design philosophy for the Levolution set-pieces is to not just be happy with the spectacle of it, but make it matter in terms of gameplay as well. There should be pros and cons with a skyscraper coming down so that you have to carefully weigh the consequences of your actions and how it will affect your team. We’ve also tried to make sure the drawbacks to such an event don’t always affect the same type of player (i.e. always affecting pilots, or infantry, etc.).

The triggers for these big events can almost be treated like sub-objectives that some players will want to protect from attacks while others will want to divert some resources to make sure that it happens. Because we love destruction, that’s a very common trigger for the set-pieces – but, for example, you will also be fighting over starting and stopping a countdown to a warhead.

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First I’d like to take a look at the Paracel Storm map shown at gamescom. Here we have the weather shift from clear skies and smooth sailing to something quite different. As the weather escalates into a raging storm, lightning strikes a wind turbine, weakening it and giving players the option of taking it down in order to free the immobilized destroyer.

If you manage set the destroyer adrift, it will crash onto the island, changing the layout of the map. With a giant ship rammed up on the beach, line of sight is completely broken and you’ll never know what’s coming from the other side – unless your team takes control of the deck. From up there, the team has a dominating position over the area. As an added bonus, they also control the anti-air weapons on the ship and thus control the air space nearby.

The changing weather in this map gives an entirely different feel to the match as it shifts, but it also introduces new gameplay possibilities on the open seas. As the storm rolls in, the map becomes darker and the violent weather creates big waves that are much more difficult to navigate. Suddenly you can have RHIB dogfights at sea where the outcome completely depends on your skill at surfing the waves and negotiating them for cover and speed.

Battlefield 4 - Paracel Storm 4 WM.jpg

Another map (which we won’t name just yet) allows you to change an entire urban level from land-based to water-based. At the start teams will have access to various land vehicles that fit an urban environment. But if someone successfully destroys a levee and lets the water pour out, the streets will flood and boats will spawn as reinforcements in place of the land vehicles.

The flooded streets also shake things up for infantry. The raised water level offers some interesting options for positioning on the map, opening up some areas you couldn’t get to before and simultaneously closing off other paths. While the boats control the streets, infantry will have to take to the rooftops for protection. You can also dive underwater, as well as use one-handed gadgets and one-handed weapons while in the water.

This kind of Levolution shows just how important your play-style is. For example, if your team dominates in infantry combat, you’ll want to defend the levee. However, if you’re an expert with the attack boat and deadly in the water, you’re going to give everything you have to take that levee down. To relate to what I said before, the levee turns into a sub-objective for your squad or team based on how you want the game to play out.

It’s the Little Things

However, Levolution isn’t just about bringing down towering skyscrapers, flooding the streets, or crashing a ship into an island. We think the little things matter too, even if they aren’t as flashy.

For example, on the small side of the Levolution scale we have the bollards that could be seen on our E3 live stream from the show floor. These bollards can be used to deny vehicles entry into an area. On our daily play tests here at DICE, we’ve seen players act as gate keepers to let their own vehicles through but hindering enemy progress by raising the bollards again when opponent vehicles approach. In this case, it creates a dynamic zone of infantry combat where the combat means something concrete in gameplay terms – the victorious side will have power over which vehicles can enter the highly sought area of the map where armored support can mean the difference between holding the base and quickly losing it.

Battlefield 4 also features little moments like metal detectors going off when a player passes through them, giving the opposing team a heads-up that danger is coming their way. Or moments like turning off the power for a building, plunging it into darkness. With skillful communication, a prepared player can use the darkness to their advantage, flipping on night vision goggles and taking out an unprepared opponent.

These are just a few examples of the many ways Levolution can play out on a small scale. As an individual and as a team, you have the ability to change how a match is played at any given moment.

We can’t wait until everyone can experience Levolution for themselves. Let us know what you think or what questions you have in the comments.

-Thomas Andersson

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Stay tuned to “The Road to Battlefield 4”, where we’ll continue the journey towards launch by diving deeper and deeper into every nuance of the biggest Battlefield game ever developed at DICE. Next episode: Commander Mode is back, and we’ll take a look at both its history and its future.

Until then, let us know what you think about this blog post, and what questions you want us to answer in the upcoming posts. Thanks for reading!


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Ready for All-out War: Meet BF4 Shoutcaster Corey Dunn


A decade of virtual battle commentary behind him, Corey Dunn is one of the most popular shoutcasters in existence. We grabbed hold of this Texas-born commentator at gamescom after one of his daily BF4 live stream events to discuss Battlefield 4 multiplayer, the art of shoutcasting, and how to keep track of 64 players immersed in all-out war.

Welcome to Cologne, Corey! Last time we saw you was at the massive BF4 E3 live stream. What’s new in the live stream here at gamescom?
- Good to be here. At gamescom, we’re going to look at the new game mode Obliteration, we’re going back to Conquest and from there we’ll dive down deep in all the changes that have happened, like Spectator Mode. The thing I’m personally looking forward to is to see the jets in action. I want to see some great dog fights!

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Corey interviews DICE Creative Director Lars Gustavsson in the gamescom 2013 live stream.

Can you explain shoutcasting for those who don’t know what it is?
- It’s interesting where the term “shoutcaster” comes from. People keep wondering “why don’t they just call them broadcasters?” The term actually came from a Winamp plugin called Shoutcast in the early 2000′s. In the beginning, shoutcasters just used to do internet radio, and that’s how things kind of formulated.

When did you realise you could earn a living being a shoutcaster?
- I went to a competitive gaming event called CBO 2003; one of the first big events I experienced. When I got there I started hearing these announcers doing play-by-play and I thought “what the hell was that?” I searched and searched for the source of the voices, and finally found this small, 10 by 10 booth, where some older guys were doing live commentary for internet radio. I found out the name of the station and really thought the whole thing was awesome. Later I saw saw a commercial where someone was looking for shoutcasters, so I sent in an audio demo. Their answer was “well, you’ve got a voice to work with.” And yes, I really just had a voice at that time, but I’ve grown since then.

So how did you improve from having “a voice to work with” to being a great shoutcaster?
- When I started out, there was no video to go with the audio. Therefore, I had to paint a picture of what happened in the game for the listener and that allowed me to build my skill set. If you go back to some of my earlier demos, I was nowhere near where I am today. I had a squeakier voice, I didn’t know my cadence, my speed, or my pacing. Usually, in the beginning, some shoutcasters are really fast and don’t know when to stop. I’ve learned to pace myself, to tell a story and have a climax in it.

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Welcome to Paracel Storm, the water-based map that’s playable in both Conquest and Obliteration mode at gamescom.

What separates your line of work from that of a regular sports commentator?
- Speed is one of the interesting things here. I’ve done college sports for basketball and soccer, but video games are faster. It’s all about pacing. Games allow you to be intense, to be this voice-over or movie announcer, to build up the hype for the audience. It’s about over-analyzing the situation so the viewers at home really can understand the intricacies of what’s going on.

How does a huge live venue like gamescom affect the overall experience?
- The great thing about something like this is the actual vibe around you. People often ask me “does a shoutcaster really have to be at an event?” I truly believe so. It’s about being there with the players and with the audience; you feed off of all that around you. You’ll talk about what’s happening in the game, but also what’s happening outside of it.

You’ve spent over a decade on the Battlefield, both shoutcasting and playing. In terms of competitive gaming, what element in Battlefield 4 excites you the most?
- It has to be the spectator mode, and all the different features in it. Daniel Matros [producer] has worked really hard to provide what competitive gamers really need: an overview to see all parts of the map, and knowing exactly where the battles are happening. That’s the hardest part of spectating a game like Battlefield: there are simply so many different kinds of players out there. Both me and the fans want to see those cinematic highlights in different angles – the helicopters, the naval battles, and so on. There are moments when I get completely lost in what happens on the screen.

That’s how you know you’ve had a Battlefield Moment.
- (Laughs) Right, exactly!

What game modes in Battlefield 4 work best for commentating?
- One of the things with shoutcasting – and even in sports – is that you need players with personality. That means you have to narrow down the number of players that are there. So close quarters combat and a mode like Defuse in BF4 is good for that. I’m also interested in what’s possible with Obliteration; the idea to have a bomb and take it to different places, that kind of tug of war between two teams, it’s kind of a meta game that goes into that. It will be cool to see how it will evolve over time.

 

“It’s important to keep the passion …
Forget about the fame, forget about the money”

 

64 players running and gunning, driving vehicles and triggering epic Levolution moments… How do you cover all that chaos in a live stream?
- Those things certainly make shoutcasting a lot more dynamic. The main thing that happens in 32 vs 32 is that it becomes more about the squad as a whole, not individual soldiers. Overall, you’re going to capture the battle as opposed to the individual gunfights. That’s one of the reasons Battlefield has been one of the best games for team play for ten years. I remember playing it when I was 15 years old, and how well I communicated with my team mates.

Do you have any tips for aspiring shoutcasters out there?
- It’s important to keep the passion. That’s why people get into it: because they love it and want to share something with others. Forget about the fame, forget about the money – when you start focusing about things like that you’re becoming a mundane shoutcaster.

One final question before we leave you to shoutcast Paracel Storm in Conquest and Obliteration mode here at gamescom: are you Prepared 4 Battle?
- I’m not only prepared for battle, I’m ready for all-out war!

Corey Dunn and fellow shoutcaster Alex Mendez will be live streaming Battlefield 4 every day of gamescom. Catch their commentary, in-depth analyses, and developer interviews starting daily at 5:15AM PDT / 2:15PM CEST. 

Pre-order Battlefield 4 Digital Deluxe Edition from Origin to get into the exclusive Battlefield 4 Beta starting early October.


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The Week of Decay is almost upon us…

weekofdecay

Hey!

Just in-case you didn’t know, Scroll’s fourth faction – Decay – is shambling into game next week! It’s going to be horrific. Click the huge image for more info.

You can buy Scrolls at this handy link.

Have a nice day!

Owen – @bopogamel


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Battlefield 4 “Paracel Storm” screenshots from gamescom


Grab your wallpaper-sized screenshots from the Battlefield 4 gamescom map “paracel Storm” here on the Battlefield Blog. Click for full HD size — perfect for your desktop.

Battlefield 4 "Paracel Storm" Heli Duel

Battlefield 4 Paracel Storm 4


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Battlefield 4: Official Premium Video


Battlefield 4 Premium was announced at the EA press conference at gamescom 2013. Learn more in the offical video below, or head to http://www.battlefield.com/battlefield-4/premium.


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Follow the Battlefield 4 live stream at gamescom


Every day of gamescom, follow the live stream from the show floor where you will see the unedited gameplay from the new map Siege of Shanghai — hosted by shoutcasters Alex Mendez and Corey Dunn.

The first day of live streaming starts August 21 around 2:30PM CEST / 5:30AM PDT. Stay tuned to the Battleifeld Blog for all things gamescom.

Watch live video from EA Games on sv.twitch.tv


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All-New MP Footage, Open Beta Details, BF4 Premium Announced


Wow. Tons of exciting Battlefield 4 news have been flooding in from the EA press conference at gamescom and we’re still catching our breath. Read on for all the Battlefield 4 updates from Cologne.

First off, we’re proud to show you the Battlefield 4 Paracel Storm multiplayer trailer, which demonstrates the intense naval battles Battlefield 4 has to offer. Experience how Levolution works at sea and witness how Frostbite 3 creates dynamic waves that offers new challenges and tactical opportunites in multiplayer.

Pre-order Battlefield 4 to make sure you are prepared to enter the Battlefield on day one.

Battlefield 4 Open Beta in October
DICE GM Karl-Magnus Troedsson also revealed the Battlefield 4 open beta. Available for all gamers on PC, X360, and PS4, the beta will feature the Siege of Shanghai map in the classic Battlefield Conquest mode. Battlefield 3 Premium members and those who pre-order the Battlefield 4 Digital Deluxe Edition will have access to the exclusive beta early October for three days. Following that, the open beta will kick off. This will be the perfect opportunity for everyone to Prepare 4 Battle before the October 29 launch.

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Pre-order Battlefield 4 Digital Deluxe Edition to get access to the exclusive beta.

During the conference we also announced Battlefield 4 Premium. Designed with our fans in mind, this membership will give players two weeks early access to five future Battlefield 4 expansion packs. Premium users are also prioritized in server queues and will enjoy unique camos, emblems, dogtags and more. Watch the Battlefield 4 Premium trailer below for the very first details of the upcoming expansion packs.

Learn more about Battlefield 4 Premium.

So there you have it: the EA press conference brought three major announcments for Battlefield 4 fans, and we’ve only just begun. Gamescom is soon in full swing, so stay tuned on the Battlefield Blog for daily updates from the show floor all week.

Remember to make your voice heard in our poll. What announcement from this day of gamescom excited you the most?

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Battlefield 4: Official “Paracel Storm” Multiplayer Trailer



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Cobalt is coming to Xbox 360 and Xbox One!

Ann2

Hello!

We’re extremely proud to announce that Cobalt – the first third-party game published by Mojang – has just been confirmed for Xbox 360 and Xbox One. You might have heard the news at Microsoft’s event at Gamescom in Cologne this morning. The game is being ported to console by FatShark AB.

Cobalt is a game about cyborgs, weapons and super slow-mo evasive manoeuvres, including combat rolls, rail slides, rocket punches and wall jumps. If you want to get one step ahead of the curve, you can download the Cobalt alpha for PC and Mac from playcobalt.com.

Ann1


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