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Blizzard Entertainment has announced that Battle for Azeroth, the newest expansion for the hit MMO World of Warcraft, will launch this summer. Further, Blizzard went on to explain that the expansion to the hit MMO will be available for pre-purchase on the World of Warcraft website.

Battle for Azeroth will bring an entirely new dimension to the battle between the Horde and the Alliance. The expansion will include a new continent to explore for each faction as well as brand-new game play features including allied races for each faction, new randomized island expansions,  and large-scale encounters called Warfronts.

One of the key features among those listed above is the inclusion of Allied Races. These are factions that existed as part of the game previously, but were limited to NPC roles. You’ve been able to do battle with Dark Iron Dwarves in the past.  In fact, they were the main enemies in some areas in the game. In the new expansion, however, they are able to join the Alliance and help them fight against their enemies. The same is true of the Zandalari trolls and their ability to join the Horde.

Players who choose to level up new characters and the expansion will be able to take advantage of newly revamped zones that will take them from level 1 to 100. Questing experience has been changed entirely. This new experience is built upon the popular feature that was introduced on the Broken Isles in the most recent expansion Legion. Zones across Azeroth, Outland, and Draenor  will now scale to a wide range of character levels. This makes it so that players can enjoy the quests stories and other content that they find there at their own pace.

The days of having to leave a quest line half finished because it’s no longer providing you experience are now over. You will be able to continue to earn all the experience that you need while completing quests that you are interested in. This is an interesting and exciting new addition to people that are interested in playing World of Warcraft as a role-playing game instead of racing through the original parts of the game just to see their way to the end as quickly as possible.

Standard and Deluxe Digital Edition

World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is available for pre-purchase digitally in a Standard Edition that costs $49.99 and a Digital Deluxe Edition the cost $69.99 in addition to the expansion the Digital Deluxe Edition also includes a cache of in-game bonuses that allow you to proudly proclaim it your allegiance to the Horde or the Alliance in a variety of Blizzard games. These digital goods include the following:

  • World of Warcraft – “Charge into battle astride the Seabraid Stallion (Alliance) and Gilded Ravasaur (Horde) mounts, and explore new frontiers with Tottle, the baby Tortollan pet, at your side.”
  • Hearthstone – “After a rough day on the front, rest up at the tavern and play a few hands of Hearthstone with your hot new Azeroth Is Burning card back.”
  • StarCraft II –  “Make your mark on distant worlds with Horde- and Alliance-themed sprays.”
  • Heroes of the Storm – “Roar onto the Battlegrounds of the Nexus riding your Primal Flamesaber, a fiery new mount with three variants.”
  • Overwatch – “Champion your faction on the battlefields of tomorrow with Horde and Alliance voice lines for Torbjörn and emotes for Tracer; sprays featuring Anduin, Sylvanas, Jaina, and Varok Saurfang; and player icons representing Kul Tiras and Zandalar.”

Complete Feature List

The full list of features in the expansion is as follows:

  • Explore Two Fabled Kingdoms – “As a champion of the Horde, travel to the empire of Zandalar to persuade the trolls to lend their naval might. As a defender of the Alliance, venture to the seafaring kingdom of Kul Tiras, home of Jaina Proudmoore, and rally its inhabitants to fight for your cause.”
  • Recruit Allied Races – “Take a new form for your adventures as several new playable Allied Races, each with unique racial abilities. Earn the favor of the Highmountain tauren, Void elves, Dark Iron dwarves, and others to create a new character of that race and add their strength to your faction.”
  • Plunder the Islands of the Great Sea – “Set out on Island Expeditions and conquer an ever-changing array of enemies, environments, and objectives. Battle in groups of three as you race against cunning rival intruders—or enemy players—to collect each island’s resources and fuel the war effort.”
  • Charge Into a Warfront –  “Fight on the battlefields of a large-scale, 20-player cooperative Warfront to claim a key strategic location. Capture resources to build your faction’s forces, lead the charge as your troops lay siege to objectives, and fight the enemy commander to claim victory in this new PvE mode inspired by classic Warcraft real-time strategy-game battles.”
  • Infuse Your Armor With Titanic Might – “Seek out Azerite, an invaluable new resource that has emerged in the Burning Legion’s wake. Imbue the Heart of Azeroth—a legendary neck piece entrusted to each hero by Magni Bronzebeard—with Azerite to customize your armor with new powers and traits.”
  • Battle to Level 120 – “Trace the corruption of the Blood God to the Underrot, unearth the secrets of a lost titan vault, escape from the Drust Realm of the Dead, and more as you quest through 10 new levels—then continue to grow in power through new World Quests, raids, dungeons, and more.”

What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on Pixelkin.org. Make sure to check them out when you get a chance. 

Ubisoft announced Grow Up, a sequel to the hit platformer Grow Home, at their E3 2016 press event.

Grow Up features, once again, the adventures of the robot BUD as he explores an alien planet full of lush and monstrous plant life. His purpose? To find the pieces of his exploration spaceship MOM that shattered his ship crashes on a moon, and he tumbles to the planet below.

Grow Home’s success was based largely on its quirky animation style and engaging activity loop. You controlled BUD as he explored an island collecting crystals and helping branches of a star plant reach floating land masses. The idea being to help grow the plant high enough so you could get back to your ship. This required tricky platforming and skilled climbing.

The sequel, according to the trailer, looks to be more of the same. The difference here is that the scope has been increased. Instead of exploring a small island you are tasked with exploring an entire planet filled with star plants of various sizes.

The increased scope necessitates the inclusion of some new modes of transportation. BUD comes equipped with a winged jet pack and has the ability to collapse into a ball to help propel himself around the varied environments.

Grow Up is scheduled to be released this August. We will have more news and updates as we get closer to release so keep your eyes on Pixelkin.org for more updates as we get closer.

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Ubisoft Blows Trekkies Minds With Star Trek: Bridge Crew

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on Pixelkin.org. Make sure to check them out when you get a chance!

Ubisoft has announced a multiplayer virtual reality game called Star Trek: Bridge Crew. Ubisoft was going to be a big part of the virtual reality gold rush. They are always an experimental publisher who is willing to take risks for the sake of big rewards. With that said, I think that a Star Trek licensed VR game might be the closest thing to a sure-fire win as you can get.

If you’ll forgive me making some assumptions; I think it is more than a strong possibility that the majority of early adopters of VR technology will be fans of the Star Trek universe of one level or another. Now, I’m not saying that all of them speak Klingon fluently, but I can imagine a lot of them have dreamt of being on a starship’s bridge. Star Trek: Bridge Crew is designed to give those fans exactly that opportunity.

The game requires multiple players to put on their VR headsets and take a station on the bridge of a starship while they complete missions. They can take up position at Engineering, Security, the Helm, or the Captain’s chair. Each station has different responsibilities and they will need to communicate and cooperate in order to succeed.

The story of the game is straightforward. Players will take on roles aboard the starship U.S.S. Aegis. They will be on a mission to explore a region of uncharted space known as “The Trench.” The goal is to find a new habitable home world for the Vulcan people whose planet has been destroyed. Unfortunately, this region is very near the Klingon Empire who is, as one might predict, less than enthusiastic about this decision. The players will need to chart the region and make smart decisions to complete their mission and make it out in one piece.

Anyone concerned that it might be tough to get three other people together to play this game can take heart though. The game can also be played in single player when you take on the role of captain and deliver orders to an NPC crew.

 

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There are few things on earth that are more consistent than the annual release of Just Dance. This year will be no different as we will be playing Just Dance 2017 this October.

The developer’s goal is, and has been, to make the whole world dance, and releasing the ever popular dance title across every platform imaginable certainly helps with that. The game will be released on the following (giant) list of consoles:

  • Wii
  • Wii U
  • Nintendo NX
  • Xbox 360
  • Xbox One
  • Playstation 3
  • Playstation 4
  • PC download (For the first time ever)

The game will launch with six different game modes including the newly designed Just Dance Machine. This is a mode that is exclusive to current generation consoles and will challenge players to dance in various international dancing styles. The other modes include Sweat + Playlists, Just Dance Quest, Just Dance TV, and the World Dance Floor.

The first tracks announced as part of the release are as follows:

  • “Sorry” – Justin Bieber
  • “DADDY” – Psy Ft. CL of 2NE1
  • “Cheap Thrills” – Sia Ft. Sean Paul
  • “Lean On” – Major Lazer Ft. MØ & DJ Snake
  • “Worth It” – Fifth Harmony Ft. Kid Ink
  • “Don’t Stop Me Now” – Queen
  • “PoPiPo” – Hatsune Miku
  • “Radical” – Dyro & Dannic
  • “El Tiki” – Maluma
  • “September” – Equinox Stars
  • “What Is Love” – Ultraclub 90

We will have more information here on Pixelkin.org as we get closer to the release.

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forza horizon 3

Microsoft gave the world its first look at Forza Horizon 3 at their E3 2016 media briefing. The Forza franchise is one of the pillars of the Xbox games lineup so it is almost a given that there will be a Forza game every holiday. 2016 will be no exception thanks for a release date of September 27.

Forza Horizon 2 took place in the Mediterranean.  You were driving on cobblestone roads and taking shortcuts through vineyards. The third entry in the series takes place in Australia, which is home to some of the most diverse landscapes you can imagine. There are lush forests, highways that overlook the see, and vast deserts. The idea of off-roading through the Australian Outback has me very excited for this game.

One important feature that Microsoft revealed regarding this game is that it will be a part of the Xbox Play Anywhere Initiative. This means that purchasing a copy of this game for the Xbox One will include a free copy of the game for windows 10. Furthermore, players will be able to play multiplayer games across all of those platforms together seamlessly. They performed a demonstration at the event where four players were racing to the beach. One player was on the newly announced Xbox One S, another was on an Xbox One, a third was on a PC rig, while a fourth was on high end windows 10 PC with a fancy steering wheel set up. All four players participated together in the same race without any hangups.

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Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared on Pixelkin.org. Be sure to check them out when you get a chance!

Microsoft made a number of significant announcements about Xbox and Windows 10 exclusive games during their E3 media briefing, but the last game they showed was Halo Wars 2. They did so using an amazing cinematic trailer that helped to frame the conflict in the game and give us a taste for the main villain. Take a look at the video above to see what I mean.

Halo Wars 2 has quietly been one of the more interesting titles in the roster of upcoming Xbox One games. This is a sequel to a Halo Wars, a real time strategy game that sold *alright* and was generally well reviewed. It was by no means a pillar of the gaming universe.

The announcement was a surprise last year at Gamescom 2015, but this year we were fortunate enough to get even more great news about the game. 343 Studios has launched an open beta starting today and lasting until June 20th. That is a full week for Xbox One players to get their hands on the game and make a decision about whether or not it is for them.

You’ll have to make your decision quickly though, because the release date isn’t as far away as one would have thought. It is launching on February 21, 2017.

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