Shacknews - David Craddock

Don't forget to pack your 3DS this weekend when you and the kiddies hit the streets for trick or treat: Nintendo announced National StreetPass Weekend starting today through Monday, October 31.

"Stop by any of the more than 29,000 Nintendo Zone hotspots across North America with your Nintendo 3DS system from Oct. 28 through 31st—you could get up to six StreetPass tags from across the globe," per Nintendo's website.

Nintendo took the liberty of including a list of games with cool StreetPass features. Dragon Quest VII lets you explore unique dungeons with other players, Shovel Knight's creates a carbon copy of your character and sends it into battle against other avatars, and Monster Hunter Generations lets you square off again Deviant Monsters, a tough-than-usual variant of critter.

Any StreetPass-enabled game will work, but those serve as a good starting point. 

Shacknews - David Craddock

Oculus sent out a tweet announcing spook-tacular discounts on Rift games over Halloween weekend.

"Get up to 75% off select scary games and experiences in the Halloween Treats sale on Rift," the company proclaimed.

Appropriately, the sale falls under a (blood-soaked) horror theme. Dread Halls and Into the Dead got slashed 66 percent off, while a 75 percent discount on Boogeyman promises not to disembowel your wallet.

Visit the Oculus website to purchase your treats... IF YOU DARE.

Shacknews - Steve Watts

Halloween is almost upon us, and that means it's time for the Chattycast to take its annual leave of its usual somewhat on-topic discussion of current game events and delve deep into the macabre. This week: skins, the most disgusting-sounding name for a mundane game element.

Overwatch's Halloween update is a great example of skins to celebrate a special event, so we're going to spend the week talking all about some of our favorite game skins, holiday-related or not. What are your fondest skin memories? Do you still have ones you use over the defaults?

Be sure to visit for your 30-day trial with a free audiobook download of your choice.

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Shacknews - Daniel Perez

Halloween is taking place on Monday, but that hasn’t stopped our favorite games to celebrate the occasion with their own special events. But one of the most special events is taking place over on Steam as Valve has launched this year’s Halloween Sale today.

Steam’s Halloween Sale has just kicked off and will run through the weekend and into the middle of next week, allowing Steam users to get deep discounts on a variety of games up until November 1st. We've seen similar Halloween-related sales on Steam back in 201and 2015, so Steam users should know what to expect during this weekend's festivities.

We heard rumblings of the Steam Halloween Sale over the past few days as some developers let the cat out of the bag prior to its official launch, like Unknown Worlds Entertainment’s Natural Selection 2. There was also a leak on the Steam developer forums as the launch date and time of the Steam Halloween Sale were marked confidential, but the message was still shared.

Those looking to pick up some games to celebrate this spooky holiday should head on over to their Steam client and purchase something to their liking. Just remember not to go too crazy considering the Steam Winter Sale is right around the corner.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Frank West has a bit of a crazy side in the Dead Rising series. Of course, killing zombies through three game can do things to a person's mind. So it isn't far-fetched to see Frank dressing up in some wildly crazy costumes in a new Halloween trailer for Dead Rising 4.

There a plenty of ways Frank sates his dress-up needs, from a Girl Scout outfit, to a dragon, a luchador and even Akuma from the Street Fighter series (another Capcom franchise, so no licensing issues here). It's all rather entertaining and just another fun way to get ready for the December 6 release of the game.

No wardrobe malfunctions are evident, except for a lot of blood on the clothes, but that should come out in the wash with a good stain remover.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Gears of War 4's first free DLC has been revealed, with two new fan-favorite legacy maps being added to Versus Multiplayer and Horde modes on November 1.

The maps, Checkout and Drydock, will be introduced for season pass holders as part of the Early Access Developer Playlist. Everyone else will be able to get the maps for free on November 8. Developer The Coalition said that two new maps will be coming each month.

If you are unfamiliar with the maps, here's a brief description:

  • Checkout: Revisit the iconic supermarket in Cole’s hometown of Hanover 25 years after the events of Gears of War 3.
  • Drydock: Transported from a COG ship building facility to a ship breaking scrapyard on a Seran mudflat, also from Gears of War 3.

Both maps will also be available "in Versus Dodgeball and Arms Race modes for squads up to three large and Horde players on Normal difficulty in the Developer Playlist period."

Halloween is in full swing in the game, so that should keep you occupied until the new maps arrive.

Shacknews - John Keefer

recent thread in the Destiny subreddit brought to light complaints of DDoS attacks and spam designed to cover up the in-game radar in Trials of Osiris. Of course, cheating of any kind gets Bungie on the warpath, and they are moving to stabilize the situation with the community's help.

"We have several team members whose full-time jobs are to ensure the security of your Destiny experience," the company said in a weekly update on the official site. "They tell us that in-game reports are the best way to send us data on malicious activity. All in-game reports of cheating are monitored, and our security team closely examines all of the top reported offenders. If you are unable to send an in-game report, we have also setup an additional online reporting tool that can be used."

Bungie also went out of its way to remind players to use the official reporting tools to make reports and don't fling accusations on the forums. It also pointed out that it uses other methods to ferret out cheaters other than these reports, and offenders will be dealt with severely.

"The Banhammer is being swung often. We take DDoS attacks very seriously," Bungie concluded. "We have automated systems in place to detect them and take action against offenders, up to and including permanent bans from Destiny. Some of the offenders reported this past weekend in trending threads fall in this category and have played their last Trials card.  Your reports help us make sure these systems are catching everybody they should be, so please keep them coming."

Shacknews - John Keefer

Nintendo's new console-handheld hybrid Switch was unveiled earlier this month, and while gamers are intrigued by the possibilities, investors have not been. Shares in the company are down 10% since the reveal, and Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima is a bit perplexed as to why. 

"To tell you the truth, I was surprised," Kimishima told Bloomberg when asked about the shar price drop. "I had wondered about the reaction. But I don't understand why. And there's no real point in me talking about the stock price."

He said Nintendo has had revenue drops in the last eight years and only after Switch is launched next March will the company know if it is on the right track with fans. "What we aim for is to increase the number of people who play games," Kimishima said. "We want to deliver all kinds of new surprises to our customers, and it is through their support that our revenue increases. That's the end result. But if that result doesn't show, that means we weren't able to deliver. Next year is when we see the result."

As for what else the company is working on, Super Mario Run for mobile is a major initiative, and Kimishima has tasked creative head Shigeru Miyamoto with making sure the game delivers on expectations. "We all saw what happened when we delivered Pokemon Go," he said, referring to the massive numbers of players adopting the game at launch in various countries. "And honestly I was quite surprised by it myself. There's no doubt that more people are using smartphones to play games. And as this time we're using Mario, that's a very important intellectual property for us. And that's what Miyamoto's team is working on now: making sure it spreads out just as quickly as Pokemon Go."

A tall task, indeed, but one Miyamoto's credentials are aptly suited for, especially given Mario's popularity. "More than 20 million people have already registered to receive notifications when the game is available," Kimishima said. "In terms of the game itself, you can download it and play a certain part of it, and then pay a fixed price and then play it over and over as many times as you want without having to pay anything extra. And that should give peace of mind that kids can play it. And we're hoping that will help it become more popular."

Shacknews - John Keefer

Offworld Trading Company from Mohawk Games has created a rather interesting niche for itself. The game mixes Mars colonization with city building and stock market speculation to create a rather fun campaign and solo "skirmish" experience sans combat. Now, the game is getting a major update with its The Patron and The Patriot DLC.

The update adds several new features to the campaign, surrounding the various colonies on Mars. Mohawk CEO Soren Johnson said the DLC seeks to expand the setting on Mars with short stories discussing what life is like for colonists, workers and CEOs. Among the additions:

  • Colony Class - Each colony now specializes in one area of the economy, altering local market conditions in a variety of ways.
  • Campaign Length - The campaign tournament can now last for 4, 7, or 10 games. Each length comes with its own balance tweaks and gameplay subtleties.
  • Wholesale Orders game mode - Not all colonies want you to build habitats and work modules for them. Now, some want your company to supply a variety of wholesale goods instead.
  • Two New Characters - New CEOs with new gameplay perks.
  • Story-Driven Campaigns - Six interactive short stories about life on Mars, available to experience through playing the new characters on each different length of campaign.
  • New Staffing Perks and Achievements

In addition, an update addressed issues with the base game with fixes and balance changes as adding some new features. This update affects all players and is unrelated to the DLC.

The Patron and The Patriot is available for $4.99 on Steam. The game came out of Early Access in late April.

Shacknews - Daniel Perez

Hello Games has been mysteriously quiet shortly after the launch of No Man’s Sky, and apparently with good reason. It appears the company has broken its silence in the form of a tweet on its official account, simply saying “No Man’s Sky was a mistake.” The tweet has since been removed and Hello Games’ Twitter account is now listed as protected.

While it’s safe to assume the tweet was probably the work of Twitter hackers, it’s interesting Hello Games decided to protect its account shortly after the message of regret was published. If it was a simple hack, the company could have just deleted the tweet and changed its login information to ensure the hackers wouldn’t continue to have access to it.

Alternatively, the message could have been published by a disgruntled employee who had access to Hello Games’ Twitter account. While this theory is a bit more far fetched, Hello Games’ ongoing blackout in discussing anything No Man’s Sky related could have sparked one employee to take matters into their own hands to possibly let the world what they were thinking: No Man's Sky was a mistake.

We’ve reached out to Hello Games for comment and will update our story accordingly.

Update: A number of publications, including Forbes and Mashable, are reporting the tweet came from a "disgruntled employee."  Hello Games' Sean Murray also commented on the incident, although he doesn't directly address the "No Man's Sky was a mistake" message:

And hopefully the final word:


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