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Xbox One Backward Compatibility Super Sale Is On Through 5/22

If wanted to either catch up on some Xbox 360 classics or just grab some of your old favorites for your digital collection, now is the time. Microsoft is having a backward compatibility sale through May 22nd, and a ton of titles are discounted up to 75%.

Check Out The Xbox One Backward Compatibility Super Sale Here

If the list is a bit overwhelming, then allow us to recommend some titles for you:

Dead Space 1&2
Red Dead Redemption
Bioshock 1&2
Burnout Paradise
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Deux Ex: Human Revolution
Dragon Age: Origins
Fable II
Fallout 3
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon
Geometry Wars
Left 4 Dead 2
Limbo
Mass Effect 1-3
Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Portal 1&2
Saints Row IV
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas
The Orange Box (Half-Life 2 + Eps 1&2)
Witcher 2

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Please Don’t Go, Mass Effect

Sigh.

As you’ve probably seen across various gaming news sites by now, it seems that the Mass Effect franchise is going to be hiatus for a bit (you can read the USGamer story here and the Kotaku story here).

In some ways, this is not terribly surprising. Andromeda’s Metacritic scores current sit at 70 (PS4), 73 (PC) and 77 (Xbox One). Surely that’s not what EA was anticipating when they forced the game to be shipped before it was ready (EA’s fiscal year ended March 31). And it’s really inarguable that the game wasn’t ready. It’s received multiple post-release patches to address a variety of issues, from facial animations to bugs to stability issues and more.

But I can’t help feeling like the decision to put the franchise on hold was driven by the absolute savaging the game has received on social media. Spending any time in the Twitterverse in the first few weeks after release, you would have thought that Mass effect Andromeda was not only the worst game of all time, but that it had destroyed the ability of the people who played it to ever enjoy a video game again.

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The reaction was ridiculous, and it became more so, as the piling-on continued until there was essentially nothing Bioware could do to escape the narrative that Andromeda was an awful game that was a total failure.

It’s really sad, because the Mass Effect universe is one I have invested hundreds of hours in, through the games, comics, novels and more. I spent a good deal of time covering and discussing the original trilogy on Co-Op Critics, my own blog and for Comic Book Resources as well. And I was so excited for a whole new series of games set in the ME universe. My first dozen-plus hours with ME: Andromeda have been great overall. Sure, I see the lack of polish, but as the first game in a new series, I feel like the criticism of it has been completely overblown. I can only imagine if the Twitterverse had been at full force when the original Mass Effect came out. The issues with AI, the glitches, the Mako–I mean can you imagine? But at the time, reason prevailed, and despite its flaws, Mass Effect was given credit where credit was due. I don’t feel like that’s been the case with Andromeda at all.

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Instead, the vitriol directed at the developers and the tidal wave of negativity on social media has helped put the series on ice. I’m just hoping that once the fervor dies down, EA and Bioware will regroup and come up with a plan for moving the series forward. Because there is so much potential for storytelling in the Mass Effect universe, and it would be a shame if this is the end of it.

In case you want to take a trip in the wayback machine, here’s some of my previous stuff on the Mass Effect series:

2008 Interview with Mass Effect Lead Writer Drew Karpyshyn

Interview with Mass Effect 2 Lead Writer Mac Walters and artist Omar Francia about Mass Effect: Redemption comic*

Interview with comic writer John Jackson Miller and artist Omar Francia about Mass Effect Redemption comic*

Blog: My Mass Effect Experience–Part 1

Blog: My Mass Effect Experience–Part 2

Co-Op Critics Podcast: Mass Effect 1-2

Co-Op Critics Podcast: Mass Effect 3

*Due to the way CBR now archives old posts, a lot of the images are no longer embedded, but the content of the interviews is still there.

GOTTA GET WARM! – Brian Plays Near Death – EP 1

After crashing at an abandoned Antarctic research facility, Brian must find a way to survive the deadly cold before he can figure out how to get rescued.

If you like this video, don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube page for more!

About Near Death:

After your plane crash-lands in Antarctica, you find yourself stranded and alone at an abandoned research facility in the midst of a deadly blizzard. Plunged into utter darkness, temperatures 100 degrees below zero, and conditions far too harsh to allow for rescue, you must explore Sutro Station and and use the tools at your disposal in hopes of escaping and finding your way home.

Not a survival game, but instead a game about surviving, Near Death pits you against an incredibly cruel opponent: Antarctica. Never more than a few minutes from freezing to death in the darkness of polar night, you must reclaim the station from the elements and fight for your life in a terrifying environment that’s more like another planet than the world you know.

 

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Games We’re Excited About: May 2017

Like April before it, this month has a good mix of both new games and re-releases of beloved favorites. Sim games, builders, fighters and first-person action games make up this month’s list, ensuring a little something for everyone.

 

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Prey (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – May 5
Eleven years after Prey landed on the PC and Xbox 360, we are finally getting the sequel-turned re-imagining of the franchise. We’re actually fine with the wait, because Prey looks like it may finally be the spiritual successor to the Dead Space franchise we’ve been waiting for. The game takes place on a space station that served as a prison for aliens that had attached the Earth.

 

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Birthdays: The Beginning (PS4, PC) – May 9

From Yasuhiro Wada, the creator of harvest Moon, comes this sandbox game about building a world filled with life. The game allows players to switch between managing the topographical and atmospheric conditions to more of a zoomed-in style of managing the moment to moment evolution of their world.

 

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Minecraft: Switch Edition (Switch) – May 11

Do we really need another version of Minecraft on yet another device? Um, absolutely. Because we’re talking about the Switch, and not only does the Switch edition get the Nintendo skin pack the WiiU version had, but it’s going to be 13 times bigger than the WiiU version. It will also run at 60fps, and you can transfer worlds from your WiiU to the Switch version.

 

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Injustice 2 (PS4, Xbox One) – May 16

2013’s Injustice was an impressive entry into the fighting genre. The game pitted darker versions of DC’s most beloved characters against one another against the backdrop of a world where Superman went bad. Not only was the game successful, but it spawned multiple comic series set in that world. The second game picks up where the first left off and will not only feature a campaign and the usual game modes, but will introduce a “multiverse” mode where battle take place across alternate worlds.

 

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Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers (Switch) – May 26

This updated version of Super Street Fighter II Turbo will feature both classic and updated graphics, as well as a remixed soundtrack. All original seventeen fighters are on the Switch version, as well as two additional characters–Violent Ken and Evil Ryu. The Final Challengers will support all Switch control styles, and will feature both local and online multiplayer. There’s also a first-person wave-based mode called  “Way of the Hado.”

Those are the games we’re excited about for May 2017. What’s on your list of games to pick up for this month?

Co-Op Critics Party Chat: Mass Effect: Andromeda

In the latest edition of our weekly series, Brian and Nick give their impressions of the first few hours they’ve spent with Mass Effect: Andromeda.

Mass Effect: Andromeda is an action role-playing video game developed by BioWare and published by Electronic Arts for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Microsoft Windows. The game begins within the Milky Way Galaxy during the 22nd century, where humanity is planning to populate new home worlds in the Andromeda Galaxy as part of a strategy called the Andromeda Initiative. The player assumes the role of either Scott or Sara Ryder, an inexperienced military recruit who joins the Initiative and wakes up in Andromeda following a 600-year journey.

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Come See Us at CT Gamer Con 4/1-4/2!

If you heard our recent interview with promoter Mitch Hallock on Co-Op Conversations, you know we are very excited for the first annual CT Gamer Con, happening at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT Saturday 4/1 and Sunday 4/2.

There will be tournaments with cash prizes for Street Fighter V, Smash (4 and Melee), Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 and more. Arcade and classic pinball games will be playable, as well as plenty of other console and tabletop games. Pro gamers Sabin, Lucky D, Mafia, Yipes, Prince Abu, HungryBox, and KirbyKaze will be playing in tournaments and meeting with fans. Nintendo will even be there giving away a Switch on Sunday!

And we’ll be there, too! Brian will have a table at the show, and he’ll be hanging out, doing interviews, talking games and having fun. So if you’re in the New England area this weekend, head down to CT Gamer Con and say hi!

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Co-op Critics Podcast Goes Weekly With Party Chat

If you subscribe to our YouTube channel, you may have noticed a new series that popped up a few weeks ago. It’s called Co-Op Critics Party Chat, and it’s a weekly dose of games discussion that will cover a variety of topics. In the past, the Co-Op Critics podcast has been a focused and in-depth discussion of one particular game or series. And our longer-form podcast will continue to be that. But we wanted to have a weekly podcast series that could serve both our YouTube audience and our longtime podcast listeners. Party Chat is that series.

Each week, we’ll be having a 15-minute or so chat about a particular topic, whether it’s what we’re currently playing, breaking news in the games industry, first impressions of a big release, or changes and updates to longtime favorites.On the YouTube channel, Party Chat will also feature gameplay related to whatever that week’s topic is. But for those who just want to hear the discussion, we’ll be posting the Party Chat episodes on our audio podcast feed as well.

We’ve already got four episodes up, and we’ve talked about the Switch launch, updates to The Division and Overwatch, impressions of 7 Days to Die and more. You can check them all out on the Party Chat playlist right here.

We hope you enjoy these weekly discussions, and we welcome suggested topics for future episodes. Feel free to send them our way in the comments, or hit us up at twitter.com/coopcritics.

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Games We’re Excited About: April 2017

March was a huge month for games and games hardware, with the launch of the Switch and the arrival of tentpole releases like Zelda, Horizon and Mass Effect. And while April can’t possibly live up to last month, there are some great games in the queue, including some updated ports and one of the year’s biggest RPGs.

 

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Persona 5 (PS4)–April 4
While I (Brian) did not play Persona 4, I have very fond memories of the over 100 hours I spent with Persona 3. Persona’s blend of story, combat and relationship management make it stand out from the rest of the pack. And Persona 5 looks super slick. The story for this latest installment takes place in Tokyo and involves students using their persona powers to travel to an alternate dimension here they must remove corruption from the hearts of adults.

 

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Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition (PS4, Xbox One, PC)– April 7
When Bulletstorm came out in 2011, we had an absolute blast with its over the top action and low-brow humor. But it was the combat mechanics that made it great–a Scorpion-like energy leash that could pull enemies in for brutal kills, and a reward system that gave you points for creatively destroying enemies. It was like Gears of War on two pots of coffee. This remastered edition includes better visuals, new maps, DLC and gives players the ability to play as Duke Nukem. Bring it.

You can also hear Dan and Brian wax poetic about their love for Bulletstorm in an old episode of the Co-Op Critics podcast right here.

 

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Stardew Valley: Collector’s Edition (PS4, Xbox One)–April 11
We’ve been playing Stardew Valley for a year now on PC, so we know what a treat console gamers are in for this month. This Harvest Moon-inspired gem has you managing a farm you inherited from your grandfather. Farming, fishing, crafting, cooking, fighting monsters and managing relationships are all part of what makes Stardew Valley so great. The soundtrack is amazing, too.

 

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Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Switch) – April 28
Mario Kart 8 was already amazing on the WiiU, and now it’s coming to Nintendo’s new console with a bevy of extra stuff. All the DLC from the WiiU version, new tracks, new tracks, new vehicles and more. Zelda may have carried the launch of the Switch, but Mario Kart 8 will keep people playing through the summer.

Those are the games we’re excited about for April. What’s on your “to buy” list? Let us know in the comments!

Co-Op Critics Party Chat: 7 Days to Die

In the latest edition of our weekly series, Brian and Nick give their impressions of the first few hours they’ve spent with 7 Days to Die.

7 Days to Die is a survival horror video game set in an open world developed by The Fun Pimps. The game’s events happen after a nuclear Third World War that destroyed an extremely large part of the world, except for some areas such as the fictional county of Navezgane, Arizona. The player is a survivor of the war who must survive by finding shelter, food and water, as well as scavenging supplies to fend off the numerous zombies (hinted to be the consequence of nuclear fallout) that populate Navezgane.

You can follow our ongoing 7 Days to Die series right here.