Fortnite Week 9 Secret Battle Star Location Guide (Season 7 Snowfall Challenge)

Fortnite‘s Week 9 challenges have arrived, which means we’re nearing the end of the game’s seventh season. This week’s missions involve popping golden balloons and dancing on a sundial, oversized coffee cup, and metal dog head, among other tasks, which will net you Battle Stars and level your Battle Pass up once completed.

As usual, there’s an added benefit to completing as many challenges as possible. If you clear all of the ones from a given week, you’ll also complete a Snowfall challenge, which will unlock a special loading screen that contains a subtle clue pointing to a free Battle Star or Banner hidden somewhere around the island.

If you’ve finished all nine weeks’ worth of challenges thus far, you’ll receive the loading screen pictured below. This one features the Prisoner–the Legendary skin you’ll earn for completing 60 weekly challenges–emerging from its cell in Polar Peak’s dungeon. Look carefully at the ice wall on the left side of the image, however, and you’ll spot an etching of a Battle Star above what appears to be a giant sled.

No Caption Provided

The sled in question can be found in the area to the south of Shifty Shafts. Glide there at the beginning of a match, head under the sled, and the Battle Star will appear. Collect it and finish the match, and your Battle Star will be leveled up by one tier. If you need more help finding it, we’ve marked its exact location on the map below.

As is the case with other Snowfall challenges, this Battle Star won’t appear unless you’ve completed the required number of challenges. You won’t be able to just head to the right location and pick it up until you’ve completed nine weeks’ worth of challenges and unlocked the above loading screen. Fortunately, we have tips for this season’s trickier missions in our complete Season 7 challenges guide.

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There are only a few weeks remaining in Season 7, so you only have a little more time to complete any remaining challenges and unlock this season’s Battle Pass rewards. If you need help finding any of Season 7’s other free Battle Stars and Banners, we’ve put together guides leading you to their locations below.

Fortnite Season 7 Snowfall Challenge Guides

Source: GameSpot.com

Fortnite Season 7 – Week 9 Secret Battle Star Location Guide

After you complete all of Week 9’s challenges, a secret battle star becomes available. Here’s where to find it.
Source: GameSpot.com

Another Mortal Kombat 11 Fighter, Kano, Has Been Revealed

Another fighter has been confirmed for Mortal Kombat 11: Kano. NetherRealm announced the character during a stream in Brazil, before confirming Kano’s inclusion in the game for international audiences via Twitter.

Despite being one of the seven original characters in the Mortal Kombat series, Kano hasn’t appeared in too many games. He was, however, a part of the last game in the series, Mortal Kombat X. Like Scorpion, Kano has a fairly good projectile attack and a fast moveset. His trademark attack, Kano Ball, has him roll into a ball and launch himself at his opponent, which does more damage at close range.

It’s probable that Kano was supposed to be revealed during a Mortal Kombat 11 stream that was originally scheduled for this week, before being postponed due to the harsh weather in the eastern US. We got our first good look at the upcoming game’s gruesome new gameplay during a January 2019 reveal event. Several series staples, such as Sub-Zero and Scorpion, return in Mortal Kombat 11’s roster, alongside characters that haven’t been seen in a while and brand-new fighters. NetherRealm also showed off some of the new Fatalities during the event, and they’re just as bloody as ever. A new trailer for the game’s story was revealed as well, which looks to be as filled with gore as recent entries in the series.

If you pre-order Mortal Kombat 11, you’ll unlock both Shao Kahn and access to the game’s beta–which begins on March 28. There are three editions of the game: the $60 standard edition, $100 Premium edition, and $300 Kollector’s Edition.

Mortal Kombat 11 releases for Xbox One, PS4, PC, and Switch on April 23. For lots more, check out our interview with series creator Ed Boon.

Source: GameSpot.com

Nintendo announces Dr. Mario for Android, iOS

Nintendo is bringing its Dr. Mario puzzle game series to phones. Dr. Mario World is scheduled for release during “early summer” on Android and iOS devices, Nintendo announced Thursday.

Dr. Mario World will be free to download with optional in-app purchases. The puzzle game is being developed by Nintendo, Line, and NHN Entertainment, a developer and operator of mobile games. Those three companies will co-develop and jointly operate Dr. Mario World, Nintendo said in a news release.

Nintendo said Dr. Mario World will be released worldwide in approximately 60 countries.

The original Dr. Mario was released for the NES in 1990. Nintendo ported the game to multiple platforms and released a handful of sequels over the years, including Dr. Mario 64 for Nintendo 64, Dr. Luigi for Wii U, and Dr. Mario: Miracle Cure for Nintendo 3DS.

Earlier today, Nintendo announced it was delaying another of its upcoming mobile games, Mario Kart Tour, to summer.

Source: Polygon.com

Anthem’s Fragmented Launch Risks Ruining What Makes Online Games Great

Remember when games used to just, come out? They had a release day. On that release day, or potentially the night before, you’d go to the store, hand a person some cash, the same amount as everyone else, and walk out with a game that you could then go home and immediately start playing. That was nice.

Anthem’s release is not that. Instead it’s so convoluted EA released a chart to try and help people make sense of when people can play the BioWare-developed shared-world shooter. How early and how long you can play Anthem for in mid-February depends on things like which video game-playing machine you own and how much money you’ve agreed to have auto-debit from your bank account each month.

If you buy Anthem on PC and have an Origin Premier subscription for $15 a month you can start playing the game on February 15. If you only have an Origin Access subscription for $5 a month you can start playing on February 15, but only for 10 hours. You can also do that on Xbox One with a $5 a month EA Access subscription. Everyone without some sort of subscription, or if playing on PS4, will have to wait until February 22 to start playing.

It’s needlessly complex and a bit frustrating. The release of a new online multiplayer game feels a bit like a concert. Which is great. Concerts are fun. Except when you feel like you’re getting nickel and dimed to get the best experience, or when your friends are in the pit but you’re stuck off on the lawn.

To put it another way, part of the excitement around Anthem is getting to be part of a new community exploring a new world. It’s never fun when right out of the gate that sort of shared experience starts getting divided into tiers and gated based on the platform you’re playing on or how much money you’re paying.

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This isn’t a new trend for EA, or other companies, but it’s certainly becoming more common and more complicated, especially as its subscription service tiers multiply. Things like EA Access, Origin Access, and even Origin Premier can be great on their own, providing a way for people to try out different games from an expansive library of demos and back catalogue titles available to all subscribers. When they become tools for further stratifying the audience for a particular game, however, they mar a game’s launch. If EA is using early access to get people to spend money on these services because selling Anthem for $60 isn’t profitable enough on its own, ann easier way might just be to charge $70 and let everyone start enjoying the game together at the same time, no charts needed.

Earlier today, one player tweeted at the Anthem Twitter account and asked why players on PS4 didn’t have any options for getting a headstart like everyone else. Jonathan Warner, the game’s director, responded by saying that EA Access not being an option for PS4 owners is out of BioWare’s hands and strictly negotiated between EA and Sony. “If it were up to me we would ALL play on the same day,” he wrote.

Source: Kotaku.com

Lots Of Nintendo Switch Game Deals Available Now On The Eshop

If you’re in the market for something new to play on Nintendo Switch, a bunch of games are on sale now in the US Eshop. Some of the system’s quirkiest indie gems are discounted as part of the Weird and Wonderful sale, while Nicalis and NIS America are offering deals on a range of titles in their respective publisher sales.

Disgaea 1 Complete, the recent remake of the classic PS2 tactical RPG, is down to $40, while the series’ latest installment, Disgaea 5 Complete, is available for $30. NISA’s Etrian Odyssey-like dungeon crawler Labyrinth of Refrain: Coven of Dusk is on sale for $40, while the action RPG Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana is $42. You can also pick up the horror game Yomawari: The Long Night Collection for $30 and the humorous brawler Penny-Punching Princess for $20.

Nicalis, meanwhile, is offering The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+ and the beat-’em-up Code of Princess EX each for $20. Additionally, the Zelda-like adventure game Ittle Dew 2+ is $10, and the beloved Metroidvania game Cave Story+ is $15. You can also get the classic top-down shooter Ikaruga for $10 and the crossover fighting game Blade Strangers for $15.

Other notable deals include West of Loathing for $8.47, The Flame in the Flood: Complete Edition for $7.49, Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime for $9, Snake Pass for $8, World of Goo for $7, and Pool Panic for $5.09. You can see more deals below; the full list can be found on Nintendo’s website.

As usual with Eshop deals, these sales are set to end on different days, so if you see something you’re interested in, you should act fast and pick it up while you can.

Source: GameSpot.com

Nintendo’s Next Mobile Game Is Dr. Mario World

Nintendo has announced a new expansion to its mobile games business. Following the release of its latest earnings report, which brought news that Mario Kart Tour has been delayed, the company revealed a new partner and game: Dr. Mario World.

Very little has been shared about the game so far; we don’t have any screenshots, just the logo below. Nintendo describes it as an “action puzzle game” and says it’s due out early this summer. It’ll be free-to-play and available on both iOS and Android devices.

Dr. Mario World is being co-developed by LINE, a Japanese company known for a variety of things, including the development of games that have proven successful in Asian markets. Those include Disney Tsum Tsum and Cookie Run.

No Caption Provided

Nintendo had previously suggested it was looking for additional partners with which to develop mobile games as it seeks to make them a more prominent part of its business.

Source: GameSpot.com

A New Dr. Mario Game Is Coming To Phones

Nintendo just announced a new mobile game partnership with Japanese company Line, which will involve a new Dr. Mario game coming to iOS and Android.

It’ll be called Dr. Mario World, and is being co-developed by both companies, with further assistance coming from NHN Entertainment. It’ll be out worldwide in “early summer 2019″.

The game is described by Nintendo as a “puzzle” title, of course, while thy also say it’ll be “Free to download with optional in-app purchases”.

The announcement comes just after Nintendo also announced a delay for the Mario Kart phone game, which is now also scheduled to appear in the summer.

Source: Kotaku.com

Downwell Review – Polished Boots

Update: Three years on, Downwell continues to be a gripping, fast-paced action game that thrives by pushing you into taking huge, exciting risks. The new Switch version of the game is on par with other versions but carries a few unique pros and cons. Playing Downwell in the Switch’s standard handheld mode means that the vertical play area of the game is dramatically reduced in size, which makes it hard to follow the game’s frenetic action. On the other hand, the console’s unique capability to remove the Joycons and position the screen as you wish allows the game’s built-in tate mode (which optimizes the play area for vertical screens) is perfect for an undocked Switch, provided you have some method of safely propping up the body of the console at a 90-degree angle (like the Flip Grip). Downwell’s play area perfectly covers the whole screen in this method, and it’s a wonderful way to experience the game. — Edmond Tran, February 1, 2019, 10:00 AM AEST

Original text, published November 6, 2015: Jumping into a bottomless pit is terrifying. Gravity shows no mercy and no matter how prepared you might be, you’re probably going to hurt yourself. Downwell’s premise embodies this fear. Downwell is a game about diving into the unknown and learning to adapt to the consequences, and it’s a thrilling, action-packed descent.

In Downwell you control a character using only three inputs: left, right, and an all-purpose action button. Pressing the action button while on the ground makes your character jump. Pressing the action button while mid-air causes your character to fire a limited number of bullets downwards, and these bullets can break destructible floors, eliminate enemies, and let your character hover for a brief period. There is only one objective: get to the bottom. And when you die, you start from scratch. The basic systems are straightforward, but the benefit is that it makes the game especially easy to pick up and play. Eliminating the need to think about moving in any other direction, or even switching between two separate buttons to jump and fire, successfully allows players to completely concentrate on the task at hand.

No platforms, no problem.
No platforms, no problem.

Each level is randomly generated, and there’s no way to stop and look ahead to gauge what enemies or traps may appear. There are pickups that increase your health, ammo capacity, and give you new kinds of weapons, but there’s no guarantee which pickups you might stumble across. End-of-level character upgrades give you useful abilities, such as causing blocks to explode into bullets and the ability to consume dead bodies for health, but are also chosen from a randomly selected pool.

These rogue-like elements are nothing new, but Downwell’s unique contribution to the mix is its use of gravity. The only way to progress through the game’s stages is to keep dropping down, and as it turns out, gravity makes your character fall pretty damn quickly. Downwell’s design focuses on dealing with the situations caused by unseen dangers below you as you fall into them at great speed. Your character is vulnerable from the top, and if you don’t manage to deal with an enemy once you’ve dropped past, it’s usually safer to keep jumping down before they bear down on you. The narrow, vertical stages leave little room to manoeuvre, and death comes quickly if enemies trap you. Aside from avoidance, jumping on heads and shooting is the only way to deal with enemies, but certain types can only be defeated by one or the other. Learning and correctly responding to these dangers as you speedily free-fall through the stages is a mentally taxing, but satisfying task if executed successfully.

Trapped platforms appear early on to make sure you keep moving.
Trapped platforms appear early on to make sure you keep moving.

The speed of the game is frustrating at first, and it’s tempting to try and take it slow, descending one platform at a time, making sure all enemies are clear, and taking a short breather before moving on. It’s also tempting to hold out for your favourite weapon module, one whose damage spread and ability to slow your descent matches your preferred playstyle. This works for the first few levels, but past the game’s first world, this calculated approach only causes even more frustration. Terrain traps are introduced, which cause damage if your character lingers too long, a time-based mechanic forces a race to the end of the level, and solid platforms to rest on become increasingly scarce. But once you start to become familiar with the game’s array of obstacles and learn how to better react to situations, playing Downwell at a quicker pace becomes incredibly enjoyable. Keeping up with your character’s fast falling speed and making snap decisions on how to deal with enemies while speeding past platforms can occasionally lead to disaster. But managing to hurtle through a large stretch of a level while dealing with everything that comes your way without even touching the ground is a joyus feeling, when you pull it off.

“…managing to hurtle through a large stretch of a level while dealing with everything that comes your way without even touching the ground is a joyus feeling, when you pull it off.”

Your character begins each run with a small amount of health and bullet capacity, and one method of improving these traits is to find pickups in side-rooms that occasionally appear throughout the stages. The caveat is that each pickup also acts as a new weapon module. This clever design decision results in some interesting choices: To replenish health in a near-death situation or upgrade your weapon capacity for later levels, you must change your weapon to something you may not necessarily be comfortable with. While learning to be familiar with how to use all the weapons can be a nice side-benefit, at times the weapon available may turn out to be completely unsuitable for the kind of trials that may lie ahead. Never knowing if a decision you make is going to severely hurt you is initially annoying, but you soon come to appreciate the additional layer of unknown to the game’s equation, which positively magnifies Downwell’s ever-present sense of danger.

First you get the combos. Then you get the money. Then you get the upgrades.First you get the combos. Then you get the money. Then you get the upgrades.
First you get the combos. Then you get the money. Then you get the upgrades.

Downwell’s biggest incentive to keep playing fast and risky is the game’s combo system: Every enemy the player kills before touching the ground counts towards a combo multiplier, which can eventually reward you with increased ammo capacity, and large amounts of currency to spend at sporadically-placed upgrade stores. Because your character has a limited number of shots in the air before running out of ammo, and jumping on enemies refreshes that ammo, maintaining a long combo becomes a challenging feat of perception, quick decision making, and adept execution. Leaping on an enemy while avoiding another, shooting a gap in the floor and falling through it, then stabilizing yourself and manoeuvring to a position where you can stomp onto another enemy to refresh your ammo is an action-packed thrill. Learning the skills and vocabulary of the game gives you the confidence to risk chaining large combos, and it’s at this level where you can experience Downwell’s most exhilarating moments again and again.

“Learning the skills and vocabulary of the game gives you the confidence to risk chaining large combos, and it’s at this level where you can experience Downwell’s most exhilarating moments again and again.”

The idea of plummeting into the unknown is terrifying, but Downwell is a game where the systems coerce you to take big risks, and enjoy the reward and thrill of pushing your limits to achieve a new personal best. The difficulty and diligence required to master Downwell does not make it an easy task, but its straightforward controls, utilitarian lo-fi presentation, and steady stream of exciting moments make the journey a consistently enjoyable and engaging experience, no matter how many times you may die on the first stage.

Source: GameSpot.com

Downwell Review – Polished Boots

Update: Three years on, Downwell continues to be a gripping, fast-paced action game that thrives by pushing you into taking huge, exciting risks. The new Switch version of the game is on par with other versions but carries a few unique pros and cons. Playing Downwell in the Switch’s standard handheld mode means that the vertical play area of the game is dramatically reduced in size, which makes it hard to follow the game’s frenetic action. On the other hand, the console’s unique capability to remove the Joycons and position the screen as you wish allows the game’s built-in tate mode (which optimizes the play area for vertical screens) is perfect for an undocked Switch, provided you have some method of safely propping up the body of the console at a 90-degree angle (like the Flip Grip). Downwell’s play area perfectly covers the whole screen in this method, and it’s a wonderful way to experience the game. — Edmond Tran, February 1, 2019, 10:00 AM AEST

Original text, published November 6, 2015: Jumping into a bottomless pit is terrifying. Gravity shows no mercy and no matter how prepared you might be, you’re probably going to hurt yourself. Downwell’s premise embodies this fear. Downwell is a game about diving into the unknown and learning to adapt to the consequences, and it’s a thrilling, action-packed descent.

In Downwell you control a character using only three inputs: left, right, and an all-purpose action button. Pressing the action button while on the ground makes your character jump. Pressing the action button while mid-air causes your character to fire a limited number of bullets downwards, and these bullets can break destructible floors, eliminate enemies, and let your character hover for a brief period. There is only one objective: get to the bottom. And when you die, you start from scratch. The basic systems are straightforward, but the benefit is that it makes the game especially easy to pick up and play. Eliminating the need to think about moving in any other direction, or even switching between two separate buttons to jump and fire, successfully allows players to completely concentrate on the task at hand.

No platforms, no problem.
No platforms, no problem.

Each level is randomly generated, and there’s no way to stop and look ahead to gauge what enemies or traps may appear. There are pickups that increase your health, ammo capacity, and give you new kinds of weapons, but there’s no guarantee which pickups you might stumble across. End-of-level character upgrades give you useful abilities, such as causing blocks to explode into bullets and the ability to consume dead bodies for health, but are also chosen from a randomly selected pool.

These rogue-like elements are nothing new, but Downwell’s unique contribution to the mix is its use of gravity. The only way to progress through the game’s stages is to keep dropping down, and as it turns out, gravity makes your character fall pretty damn quickly. Downwell’s design focuses on dealing with the situations caused by unseen dangers below you as you fall into them at great speed. Your character is vulnerable from the top, and if you don’t manage to deal with an enemy once you’ve dropped past, it’s usually safer to keep jumping down before they bear down on you. The narrow, vertical stages leave little room to manoeuvre, and death comes quickly if enemies trap you. Aside from avoidance, jumping on heads and shooting is the only way to deal with enemies, but certain types can only be defeated by one or the other. Learning and correctly responding to these dangers as you speedily free-fall through the stages is a mentally taxing, but satisfying task if executed successfully.

Trapped platforms appear early on to make sure you keep moving.
Trapped platforms appear early on to make sure you keep moving.

The speed of the game is frustrating at first, and it’s tempting to try and take it slow, descending one platform at a time, making sure all enemies are clear, and taking a short breather before moving on. It’s also tempting to hold out for your favourite weapon module, one whose damage spread and ability to slow your descent matches your preferred playstyle. This works for the first few levels, but past the game’s first world, this calculated approach only causes even more frustration. Terrain traps are introduced, which cause damage if your character lingers too long, a time-based mechanic forces a race to the end of the level, and solid platforms to rest on become increasingly scarce. But once you start to become familiar with the game’s array of obstacles and learn how to better react to situations, playing Downwell at a quicker pace becomes incredibly enjoyable. Keeping up with your character’s fast falling speed and making snap decisions on how to deal with enemies while speeding past platforms can occasionally lead to disaster. But managing to hurtle through a large stretch of a level while dealing with everything that comes your way without even touching the ground is a joyus feeling, when you pull it off.

“…managing to hurtle through a large stretch of a level while dealing with everything that comes your way without even touching the ground is a joyus feeling, when you pull it off.”

Your character begins each run with a small amount of health and bullet capacity, and one method of improving these traits is to find pickups in side-rooms that occasionally appear throughout the stages. The caveat is that each pickup also acts as a new weapon module. This clever design decision results in some interesting choices: To replenish health in a near-death situation or upgrade your weapon capacity for later levels, you must change your weapon to something you may not necessarily be comfortable with. While learning to be familiar with how to use all the weapons can be a nice side-benefit, at times the weapon available may turn out to be completely unsuitable for the kind of trials that may lie ahead. Never knowing if a decision you make is going to severely hurt you is initially annoying, but you soon come to appreciate the additional layer of unknown to the game’s equation, which positively magnifies Downwell’s ever-present sense of danger.

First you get the combos. Then you get the money. Then you get the upgrades.
First you get the combos. Then you get the money. Then you get the upgrades.

Downwell’s biggest incentive to keep playing fast and risky is the game’s combo system: Every enemy the player kills before touching the ground counts towards a combo multiplier, which can eventually reward you with increased ammo capacity, and large amounts of currency to spend at sporadically-placed upgrade stores. Because your character has a limited number of shots in the air before running out of ammo, and jumping on enemies refreshes that ammo, maintaining a long combo becomes a challenging feat of perception, quick decision making, and adept execution. Leaping on an enemy while avoiding another, shooting a gap in the floor and falling through it, then stabilizing yourself and manoeuvring to a position where you can stomp onto another enemy to refresh your ammo is an action-packed thrill. Learning the skills and vocabulary of the game gives you the confidence to risk chaining large combos, and it’s at this level where you can experience Downwell’s most exhilarating moments again and again.

“Learning the skills and vocabulary of the game gives you the confidence to risk chaining large combos, and it’s at this level where you can experience Downwell’s most exhilarating moments again and again.”

The idea of plummeting into the unknown is terrifying, but Downwell is a game where the systems coerce you to take big risks, and enjoy the reward and thrill of pushing your limits to achieve a new personal best. The difficulty and diligence required to master Downwell does not make it an easy task, but its straightforward controls, utilitarian lo-fi presentation, and steady stream of exciting moments make the journey a consistently enjoyable and engaging experience, no matter how many times you may die on the first stage.

Source: GameSpot.com