Tag Archives: gaming news

‘Super Mario 64 Maker’ mod works exactly like you think it should

Kaze Emanuar is back at it again with a “Super Mario 64 Maker” hack. This new mod lets players create their own 3D Mario levels inside of Super Mario 64.

In a video showcasing the mod, Kaze Emanuar decides to create a red coin star in Super Mario 64. While he starts off with a cave theme, Kaze Emanuar easily changes it to a Bowser castle theme, complete with lava pools.

For the rest of the video, Kaze Emanuar sets up traps and obstacles for himself using his own Super Mario 64 Maker mod — easily jumping in and out of create and test mode to try his contraptions. Using the mod, he creates in the 3D plane using a big red arrow. With the C buttons, he can switch between different objects, and raise or lower them in the environment.

With Kaze Emanuar’s toolset, players are able to create wall jump puzzles, different kinds of stars, coin blocks, Koopa shells, flying boxes and more. Kaze Emanuar even added some of his own items, like the iconic Mario Bros. Note Block.

In terms of sharing levels, Kaze Emanuar set up a page on the Super Mario Maker Database. Players can easily create a level, save it, and upload it to the database for others to download and enjoy. Those interested in making their own levels can download the Super Mario 64 Maker mod and its compatible Super Mario 64 patcher. The controls for Super Mario Maker 64 are in Kaze Emanuar’s video description.

Kaze Emanuar is a YouTuber and modder that specializes in Nintendo 64 games. He’s spent the past few years creating memorable Mario mods, like Super Mario Odyssey 64 and Super Mario 64 Online.

Source: Polygon.com

How Animal Crossing players are protecting themselves from pirates

By the time G realized his island had been ransacked, it was too late. He didn’t even see the perpetrator jump off the airport pier and into the water, only to swim around the fencing and onto the rest of the island.

The infiltrator trampled his black roses, took 10 rare DIYs he’d placed on the beach for safekeeping, and shook 15 money trees he had set up in his elaborate garden — a total loss he estimated at around 1 million Bells.

This sort of bad behavior, of course, is an anomaly. The Animal Crossing: New Horizons community tends to be overwhelmingly positive. Players go on social media and often share and trade fruit (say, oranges for my peaches) and DIY recipes. But a New Horizons summer update that allows players to splash into the ocean unexpectedly left an exploit open for badly behaved visitors.

Should a visitor jump off the airport pier into the ocean, they can simply swim around any barricades. Shortly after the update, players active in trading communities realized the risk and got to work in finding solutions. Others hope Nintendo will patch out the ability to dive off the pier entirely. Now, New Horizons players are grappling with how to address this behavior.

Plenty of players — specifically, the ones active in the Stalk Market — have been scammed by players asking for fees to sell turnips. Sometimes, for example, a player will simply turn off their game once a visitor drops an entry fee, allowing the scammer to collect without having to deliver their wares.

New Horizons players have found solutions for such tactics. Some players have “bouncers” who help keep order. Other players create elaborate fencing on their islands, so visitors can be managed easily, without the risk of someone running off to do mischief. Fencing is probably the most popular option, but the new airport pier exploit renders it useless, leaving some players worried about scammers on their islands. A lot of players aren’t necessarily worried about their islands being destroyed, but are upset about the breach of trust from these bad actors.

G telling me about how all the money trees were stolen Image: Nintendo EPD/Nintendo via Polygon

New Horizons player G, from the island of turnip4wat, told me he’s active on turnip.exchange, a site where players open their islands to strangers to buy and sell turnips, to share resources, and to trade DIY recipes. G said he was hosting a DIY exchange — “take one, leave one.” He noticed one visitor jump off the dock. They didn’t bypass the fencing, but that’s when G realized it was possible.

“I disconnected the session immediately,” G said. “Then I ran around my island afterwards to see if anyone else had done it when I was AFK.”

G invited me over to his island to take crime scene photos. Of course, I obliged. His island is perfectly designed for visitors — at least, it was until the pier exploit. The airport pier opens to a paved street that flows into a large, fenced-off area for DIY trading. There’s a lot of decorative fencing and hedges already, creating distinct pockets of the island. That makes it easy to fill in gaps with temporary fences when players come to visit, creating an open common area for the trading.

G said he’s still going to host people at his island — that most of the community is good. But he’ll make sure to add even more fencing.

“People running over flowers is not the end of the world because it will grow back,” G said. “But money trees don’t grow back. I’ll fence those off and also stop dropping things on the ground that are valuable.”

He continued: “Honestly, I was kind of disappointed in the community. This game has really attracted a lot of nice people and added a lot of positivity to the internet. I just hate to have to fence things off, it just feels wrong because most people in ACNH are so nice.”

Scene of the rose trampling crime in Animal Crossing New Horizons
The trampled roses have now come back.
Image: Nintendo EPD/Nintendo via Polygon

Another player, Skye, told me he experienced something similar: While hosting a DIY trade on turnip.exchange, someone quietly hopped off the pier and disappeared. Skye didn’t notice anything until he saw the person walking around outside the fenced-in area in a wetsuit.

“He literally took everything that was worth anything, the worst being that he shook all my money trees, for around 300K Bells worth, including the ones I kept for decor in hardly accessible areas,” Skye told me. “He plucked all my gold roses, and even took the few tools I had lying around.”

Skye continued: “Before then, I only had positive experiences with online play, so as dramatic as this sounds, this one experience really shook me.”

And that makes sense — though the scammers in New Horizons are “only” stealing virtual goods, they’re virtual goods that mean different things to people. There’s a level of trust in inviting strangers to your island, a place that you may have dedicated hundreds of hours to. During a challenging time, New Horizons has become a comforting spot for some players.

I spoke to a few more players who said similar things: that it was surprising when something like this happened in the mostly good community. But when it did happen — when a player violated the trust — it was hurtful.

The easy way to deal with suspicious behavior on your island, though, is simply to end the multiplayer session. You can do this by hitting the Minus button on the left Joy-Con.

Another player, MG, told Polygon that people shouldn’t panic, though: There are ways to ensure that your island is safe. Focus on fencing off the high-value areas, she said — like rare flowers or money tree orchards. It’ll take a lot less time and won’t wreck your island’s aesthetic.

“But if someone is still concerned, I would suggest they aesthetically incorporate fencing into their beach areas,” MG said. “Even before this update, I had some of my beaches fenced off, only accessible through a single tile path, because I like how it looks on my island. It’ll be super easy to just pop a fence piece in front of the path to block the beach off from divers.”

You don’t even have to use fencing, she said: “You could use cute items that happen to block access points. I made my secret beach a super cute picnic area, and because of the how the items are placed, I can’t walk onto the beach at all.”

Source: Polygon.com

D&D will change to address racism, but someone has already done the work

In June, Dungeons & Dragons publisher Wizards of the Coast announced that it would take steps to address racist stereotypes in the world’s most popular role-playing game. But the problems go deeper than simply cleaning up the image of the black-skinned Drow and giving the Vistani — an analog for the Roma people — some dignity. That’s because the concept of race itself, as a game mechanic, is deeply flawed.

Wizards says it will implement changes this year to how race works in Dungeons & Dragons via a new, as-yet unannounced product. But another game designer has already found a way to address D&D’s race problems. In fact, the new zine published by Arcanist Press could serve as the way forward for the entire gaming industry.

In Ancestry & Culture: An Alternative to Race in 5e, author and designer Eugene Marshall argues that the concept of race in 5th edition D&D isn’t just flawed, it’s bigoted. He’s a lot more gentle with his language, however. That’s likely because in addition to writing and designing RPG content for Arcanist and Sigil Entertainment, he’s also an associate professor of philosophy. One of his specialties is the philosophy of games. Marshall’s Ancestry & Culture reads more like a scholarly work than a run-of-the-mill splatbook. The only thing missing is footnotes and a proper bibliography.

From the introduction:

Scientists and philosophers who study race reject the concept of race as a biological fact that discretely individuates groups of people. Race is not a biological reality; rather, it is a social concept constructed and employed differently at different times in history and in different places in the world. It is not like eye color, but like citizenship: something that is based in social relations and concepts, not biology.

In other words, the concept of race as it has been used from at least the Enlightenment forward to the twentieth century is, frankly, bankrupt. This is not to say there is no such thing as ancestry, heritage, and genetic difference, of course. Indeed, our genetics are real, but they are a function of our individual ancestry, not our race. What folks call racial differences simply do not map cleanly onto anything in our biology as simplistic as the concept of race. What’s more, that concept in the real world has been used to justify historic atrocities.

Indeed, racists still use these bogus, faux-scientific justifications to support their prejudice. Because these harmful concepts have no place in our world, they need not be in the stories we tell with our friends either.

A marriage scene, showing a tiefling and a Black human, being married by a dwarf. Image: Arcanist Press

He then proceeds to lay out a flexible, highly adaptable system that effectively chops up the existing races in D&D, and then reassembles them on a latticework supporting both a narrative role-playing experience and balanced tactical gameplay. The framework goes to great lengths to respect everyone at the table.

Marshall’s system relies on divorcing “biological ancestry from cultural heritage.” When creating a character, players don’t choose a race. Instead, they choose the culture in which their character was raised and the ancestry of their parents. Stat bonuses — things like higher intelligence, constitution, or charisma — are derived from culture. Meanwhile, inherited traits — things like height, speed, and life span, and fantastical abilities like breath weapons or dark vision — are tied to ancestry.

In gameplay terms, Marshall’s design offloads the problematic issue of race in favor of expanded creativity and expression. In role-playing terms, it not only encourages but requires players to think long and hard about how their character relates to their own environment and to the family that raised them. It does that by embracing the concept of mixed ancestry.

Previously, 5th edition D&D’s Player’s Handbook only supported two races with mixed ancestries: half-elf and half-orc. Marshall’s system expands the possibilities exponentially:

A character can have an elven parent and a human parent, or a dwarven parent and a halfling parent. Other characters can have parents who themselves have mixed ancestry. The rules in this section provide mechanics to generate such mixed ancestries. Of course, almost all characters in a fantasy world probably have some degree of mixed ancestry. These rules are intended to allow players to make characters that have two primary ancestries, however, rather than one dominant one.

When players with mixed ancestries create their character sheet, they are free to pick and choose from the ancestral traits that they have available to them. A player with a dragonborn parent and an elven parent can breathe fire and see in the dark. They are also allowed more variability in areas like life span and speed.

My favorite part, however — and the section that very nearly brought me to tears — is what I’d like to call the diversity buff. Marshall, who again is better with words than I am, calls the perk “Diverse Cultural Traits”:

People of mixed ancestries are most often found in multicultural communities where elves, humans, dwarves, and halflings, among others, live together. Anyone of any ancestry can be found in such communities, which is one of the strengths of such cultures.

With Ancestry & Culture, diversity is no longer a bludgeon that Dungeon Masters beat their players over the head with. Marshall’s system is permissive, rather than restrictive. Diversity ascends from being merely a tool to cast orcs and drow as the “other.” Instead, it becomes a boon from which players can draw their own strength.

Diverse Cultural Traits grants players +2 to their charisma, because diversity is beautiful. They gain the character trait whereby they value personal freedom and creative expression. They have an inner strength whereby they have “neither love of leaders nor desire for followers.” They gain proficiency in two skills of their choice, and they can speak two extra languages that might be spoken in their community.

D&D spent decades codifying a ruleset that reinforces the racism already endemic in our culture, even when the rules of the game were revised across five editions and more than 40 years. The original RPG is the Ur-game, from which modern video games and even movies now flow. We have all been influenced by it. Ancestry & Culture works to upend that, while keeping the game that millions of people love to play around the world whole.

And it does it in 26 pages. The other 50 pages are full of adventures and other great stuff.

If you want to start changing how you play D&D right now, you can purchase Ancestry & Culture: An Alternative to Race in 5e as a PDF for $9.95. Softcover copies run $14.95. You can also snag 61 Custom Ancestries & Cultures for an additional $9.95.

Ancestry & Culture: An Alternative to Race in 5e is available now. The zine was reviewed using a download code provided by Arcanist Press. Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. You can find additional information about Polygon’s ethics policy here.

D&D Essentials Kit

The Dungeons & Dragons Essentials Kit is “the single best introduction” to the fantasy role-playing game we’ve ever seen. The box includes everything you need to start playing D&D, including an introductory rulebook, a DM screen, a set of 11 dice, a handy set of cards for things players need to keep track of (initiative, magic items, etc.), and a brand-new adventure, Dragon of Icespire Peak.

link copy 2 Created with Sketch.

Amazon / $15.59 Buy

Source: Polygon.com

Tetris update introduces cash prizes for playing daily game show

Players can now win cash by playing Tetris daily, thanks to a new update for the mobile version of the game. The update features four different modes, including a competitive game show, Tetris Primetime, that offers cash prizes for dropping some mad Tetriminos.

Tetris Primetime takes place each evening inside the Tetris app on Android and iOS, and features host Millen Baird, a New Zealand actor. Players can log on and compete for a $5,000 prize pool — like HQ Trivia, but for Tetris. That amounts to more than $1 million in annual prize money for Tetris Primetime.

Games take place at 7:30 p.m. in the time zone of the closest “anchor city” to the player, with the current locations being Auckland, New Zealand; Perth, Australia; Moscow; Berlin; London; New York City; and Los Angeles. For example, someone in the Midwest would play at 6:30 p.m. Central, if New York is their anchor city.

Thursday’s Tetris mobile update also introduces a few other modes of play. Tetris Royale is a multiplayer game mode inside the app. Like Tetris 99 on Nintendo Switch, Tetris Royale takes inspiration from battle royale games like Fortnite, pitting you against 99 other players. The goal is to be the last person standing.

Tetris Together offers friendly multiplayer matches against close friends and family. Players can also talk together via voice chat during games. And the Tetris Solo Marathon is just the standard Tetris mode we’ve all been playing for decades.

Tetris features numerous skins, including Game Boy Tetris, the classic version, and more modern looks. Players can also customize their controls between swipe controls or on-screen buttons. The game is free on both iOS and Android, and players can download it from the App Store or Google Play.

Source: Polygon.com

Crash Bandicoot is getting a new mobile game too

Crash Bandicoot is having a busy year. In addition to a new numbered sequel (Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time), the onetime PlayStation mascot is heading to Android and iOS devices later this year with Crash Bandicoot: On the Run from King, the Activision-owned company behind Candy Crush Saga.

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run is, as one might expect, a runner-style game that pits Crash and Coco against Dr. Neo Cortex and his henchmen. Gameplay, which shows up about 70 seconds into the mobile game’s debut trailer, appears to involve plenty of running and platforming that’s not too dissimilar from classic Crash Bandicoot mechanics. The mobile game will rework game locations from other Crash games, such as Turtle Woods, Lost City, and Temple Ruins, as well as bosses, including Scorporilla and Nitrus Brio.

King did not announce a release date. Interested Crash fans can pre-register for the game, which will be available from Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store, at the Crash Bandicoot: On the Run website. For a more traditional Crash experience, Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time will be released Oct. 2 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Source: Polygon.com

Gary Larson published the first new Far Side comics in 25 years

The Far Side burnt Gary Larson out. The publishing schedule, the deadlines, the creative crunch — after nearly 16 years cranking out a daily strip, the cartoonist stepped away from his wickedly funny comic and didn’t look back. He earned the reputation of a recluse, sticking mostly to environmental activism, leisurely retirement activity, and the occasional one-off for The New Yorker. There was no looking back … until the art drew him back in.

After updating the web 1.0 Far Side website in December 2019, Larson has published three new single-panel comics, his first true return to the form in nearly 25 years. According to a letter introducing the new material, the art itself stood in his way — mainly, a clogged pen that irked him to no end. “I thoroughly enjoyed my career as a syndicated cartoonist, and I hope, in spirit at least, we had some laughs together,” he writes.

The process eroded his interest. Then something changed.

new stuff image from gary larson’s far side Image: Farworks

“So a few years ago—finally fed up with my once-loyal but now reliably traitorous pen—I decided to try a digital tablet. I knew nothing about these devices but hoped it would just get me through my annual Christmas card ordeal. I got one, fired it up, and lo and behold, something totally unexpected happened: within moments, I was having fun drawing again.

“I was stunned at all the tools the thing offered, all the creative potential it contained. I simply had no idea how far these things had evolved. Perhaps fittingly, the first thing I drew was a caveman.”

Larson is upfront about the fresh comics: This is not the beginning of a new daily or weekly strip. Any new material will arrive when it’s ready. “I’m just exploring, experimenting, and trying stuff,” he says.

Readers can find the new comics on TheFarSide.com.

Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. For more information, see our ethics policy.

Source: Polygon.com

In Valorant, making a gun into a dragon proved to be a real pain in the ass

On Wednesday morning, Riot Games announced Valorant’s most elaborate set of skins so far, themed with dragon designs. They also look great. Each different gun-dragon has its own roars, firing sounds, and animations for things like reloading or equipping. The dragons spread their wings, grab magazines with their claws, and fly toward players’ hands. They’re complicated and detailed, but Riot had another challenge with this skin line beyond just making it look good: The skins had to be fair and they had to feel fair. And those aren’t always the same thing.

Fairness in Valorant is tied to an idea that Riot refers to as “competitive integrity.” The main idea is that anytime you die, all the information and technology needed to avoid dying should have been at your disposal — rather than you dying because of lag, for example.

Competitive integrity can be a little harder to see when it comes to cosmetics, but everything still has to feel fair both to other players and to the player using the skins, which wasn’t easy to do with the skins as complicated as the Elderflame line.

In a recent interview with Polygon, Valorant producer Preeti Khanolkar explained, “Ultimately, you just want to win your game, so [finding] what’s going to look cool but not be ‘pay-to-lose’ has been a challenge.”

One of Riot’s early struggles with the Elderflame line, according to Valorant art lead Sean Marino, was trying to make sure both that the guns looked like living dragons and that players could still identify them as the same base weapons they’re familiar with.

“Silhouettes are really important,” Marino said. “This one definitely pushes the boundaries of it. But we tried creative things like with the Frenzy and we’re like, ‘How can we fit a dragon into this situation?’ And we found a cool opportunity to take its tail and wrap it around the bottom of the magazine to put it into the correct shape. That way, if someone sees it on the ground, they immediately know what it is, and if you see it in first person you know what it is.”

Elderflame Frenzy skin from Valorant
Concept art for the Elderflame Frenzy skin.
Image: Riot Games

The more complicated task was making the Elderflame set feel fair to use. One challenge is that the skins need to feel complex and unique, with all the details specific to each dragon, without actually taking up more screen real estate than any other skins. After all, covering more of the screen would make the skin objectively worse to use.

According to Marino, the Operator sniper rifle proved to be particularly challenging, “We were on the verge of cutting it, because it’s the only dragon that has wings,” Marino said. “It was like, if you open up these wings, now it takes up all of your screen space, and that compromises competitive integrity.”

“Yeah, there were at least a couple of moments where Marino would turn to me and be like, ‘Can we ship this skin line without an Operator?’” Khanolkar chimed in, laughing. “And I was like, ‘OK, well we have a couple of months; let’s just see […] and it did somehow make it. It was just intense collaboration between the group and refusing to let it fall through.”

Valorant’s Elderflame Operator skin concept art
Concept art for the Elderflame Operator.
Image: Riot Games

Perhaps the most specific struggle of the skins, though, was making them feel balanced, even if there wasn’t actually anything unbalanced about them. According to Khanolkar, this was one of the problems the team ran into early on with the Elderflame skins.

“[They] had a long summon animation,” Khanolkar said. “It [was] this kind of swoopy ‘gun materializes’ thing. And it was cool. But everyone was like, ‘I hate this. I know it’s the same speed, but it feels slower and that messes with me.’”

Since the actual time it took to equip the weapons with Elderflame skins was the same as any other gun skins, it was all about feel. And the only way to find the perfect feel was through lots and lots of testing.

Valorant’s Vandal weapon with the Elderflame skin animation
The Vandal’s Elderflame animation.
Image: Riot Games

“We did extensive testing with our design play-test crew, which is, like, our highest ELO players who play twice a day and test maps, characters, everything, and of course, skins,” she said. This team went back and forth with the art team and the animators constantly on each of the skins to make sure that they all felt just right.

During our interview on Monday, before Riot’s well-received skin teaser on Wednesday morning, both Marino and Khanolkar were excited but nervous about how players would react when the skins drop on July 10.

“It would be the most heartbreaking thing if [players] look at this and [are] like, ‘Yeah it’s a dragon gun, I guess,’” Khanolkar said. But, she said, if players like the Elderflame skins, then the team can see just how much further and weirder it can get with Valorant skins in the future.

Source: Polygon.com

The Sims is getting a competition-based TV show

The Sims is getting a competition series that will air Friday nights on TBS.

The Sims Spark’d is a reality competition in partnership with Eleague and YouTube channel Buzzfeed Multiplayer, where players will have to take on challenges to make unique characters, stories, and worlds in The Sims 4. The show will be four episodes long and will air starting July 17 at 11 p.m. ET. The winning competitors will receive $100,000.

The show features Maxis game developer Dave Miotke and Buzzfeed Multiplayer YouTube personality Kelsey Impicciche as judges.

To coincide with the show, there’ll be in-game events for viewers, and the top contestants in that program will be considered to go on a future season of The Sims Spark’d.

It’s a little hard to tell what the challenges may entail for both the show and the online program, but there’s no doubt that The Sims fans will have to design some great things in order to win.

Source: Polygon.com

The Boys season 2 trailer promises a bloody, superpowered manhunt

The Boys are back in town — though the season 2 trailer is a little more turbulent than a Thin Lizzy song.

After years in development as both a movie franchise and TV series, the adaptation of Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson’s comic The Boys finally settled down and found a huge audience on Amazon Prime Video. Striking the right balance between political satire, pulpy plots, and comedic levels of gore, the first season of showrunner Eric Kripke’s series accurately translated Ennis and Robertson’s story into a kind of antidote for grimdark, cynical superhero stories.

A first look at season 2 promises more of what made those first eight episodes work. After major revelations in the season 1 finale, the show picks up with Billy Butcher (Karl Urban) and the rest of the Boys on the run, and Homelander (Antony Starr) and the remaining members of the Seven hot on their tails. In the trailer, the super powers zigzag in every direction, mortal beings meet their ugly demise, and images of heroes in front of hero propaganda and the U.S. flag are even more gruesome. The Boys isn’t for the faint of heart, but it has something to say, and with force.

Besides giving viewers a taste of what to expect, the first season 2 trailer also serves up a release date: Sept. 4, 2020.

Source: Polygon.com

Blizzard’s Shadowlands summit reveals new information on World of Warcraft’s covenants

We’ve known about Covenants, the new system in World of Warcraft’s next expansion, Shadowlands, since BlizzCon 2019. Players will choose from one of four themed factions in the mystical lands of death, and that choice will grant their character powerful abilities. During Blizzard’s Shadowlands summit on Wednesday, World of Warcraft game director Ion Hazzikostas provided tons of information on what the player will have to do with their new friends after choosing a Covenant.

New companions (with old school talent trees)

Each Covenant will have a series of companions. This, by itself, is not remarkable; zones like Nazjatar in Battle for Azeroth allowed players to equip bodyguards. However, these new companions in Shadowlands have old-school talent trees that harken back to the days of classic World of Warcraft. Players will level these champions up and bring them into the field. Some are utility focused, others are tanks, and some focus entirely on damage.

World of Warcraft - a soul-bind companion’s talent tree Image: Blizzard Entertainment

Level up your Covenant’s crib

Players will earn Renown through endgame activities, and this will allow them to level up their chosen Covenant’s Sanctum. This draws inspiration from Warlords of Draneor’s Garrison system, and Legion’s Order Hall. Players can add utility, like a transportation network, to their Covenant’s Sanctum, as they level up and gain Renown. They will also be able to restore part of their Covenant’s zone. For instance, players can restore Ardenweald’s forests, permanently changing them from dried husks to wonderful, bustling zones full of quests.

World of Warcraft - a Covenant upgrade screen Image: Blizzard Entertainment

Four unique endgame activities

Each Covenant has its own unique and substantially different endgame activity. None of these are incredibly lore important or high stakes, but they will offer a regular activity for players to enjoy. Here are the four Sanctums that Blizzard revealed during today’s summit.

Venthyr Covenant

Unique endgame activity: Ember Court

Players will get access to a giant vampire gala. This is the party of the season, and players will be on guard duty. Kick out party crashers, make small talk, and be a fantastic host. Hazzikostas explained that part of being a Venthyr is “throwing the most badass party in the Shadowlands.” Of course, the better the party, the better the loot you can earn.

Kyrian Covenant

Unique endgame activity: Path of Ascension

This allows you to take control of one of your soul-binded companions, and run through the Kyrian tests of combat and glory. “This is a self-contained, combat-heavy system with a bit of a boss rush feel to it,” said Hazzikostas.

Necrolords Covenant

Unique endgame activity: Abomination Factory

Necrolords players have joined up with the military might of the Shadowlands. They will gain access to an Abomination Factory. Necrolords players will be able to craft their own abominations for use in the world, crafted from the finest military materials in all of the realms of death.

Night Fae Covenant

Unique endgame activity: Queen’s Conservatory

Players will get to tend to plots, expanding and upgrading the conservatory in order to nurture souls back to life. It’s a much more magical and high-concept take on the farm system in Mists of Pandaria, and players will want to make sure that each soul that enters the realm of the Night Fae have the best places to rest and be reborn.

Shadowlands is entering beta soon; the expansion is expected to release in fall 2020.

Source: Polygon.com