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Borderlands 3 gets first casino-themed expansion next month

Borderlands 3 is bringing back a fan favorite character next month for its first paid campaign expansion, Moxxi’s Heist of the Handsome Jackpot.

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Borderlands 3 Moxxi's Heist of the Handsome Jackpot casino DLC
2K Games

Borderlands 3 meets Oceans 11 next month.

On Dec. 19, Borderlands 3 ‘s first campaign DLC, Moxxi’s Heist of the Handsome Jackpot, arrives. This new expansion, unveiled on Kinda Funny’s The Borderlands Show, will introduce a series of missions with the promise of new loot and the return of (the hologram of) beloved villain, Handsome Jack.

Borderlands 3 Puts it All on Jack

“This new adventure takes place on The Handsome Jackpot, a glitzy casino matching the massive ego of its now-deceased owner, and sees you attempting to reach the casino’s core and take total control of the station,” reads a blurb on the official Borderlands website.

“That’s easier said than done: the place is crawling with multiple models of Hyperion Loader Bots who will try to kill you on sight, as well as lunatic looters who’ve been trapped aboard The Handsome Jackpot ever since Jack’s death.”

The TL;DR of the story is: Moxxi shared her plans for the casino with Jack while they were dating. He then stole the plans after their break-up (and added a hologram of himself to gloat over the casino). The heist that Moxxi has invited the Vault Hunters to join her in is her way of getting back at the old Hyperion boss.

Since the end of October, Gearbox’s loot-shooter has been in the grips of a free Halloween-themed seasonal event, Bloody Harvest. That will come to an end on Dec. 5, two weeks before Vault Hunters can join Moxxi for a raid on Jack’s casino.

It’s important to note: this is a paid expansion, not a free update. With the purchase of a season pass for $49.99, players gain access to Moxxi’s Heist, and three other promised expansions, which have not yet been unveiled.

December is usually a light month for games. Aside from a few eagerly anticipated releases, like Wattam and Life is Strange 2, this year is no different. Moxxi’s Heist will, at the very least, give fans of the successful shooter something to play during hobby’s holiday hibernation.

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Andrew King is a news and sports reporter by day and a freelance games writer by night. He likes immersive sims, 3D platformers and open-world games. Find his writing at GameCritics and The Hillsdale Daily News.

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Sci-fi puzzler The Turing Test is coming to Nintendo Switch

Square Enix has announced that science-fiction puzzle adventure The Turing Test is coming to Nintendo Switch next month.

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The Turning Test - Nintendo Switch
Bulkhead Interactive

Square Enix has announced that science-fiction puzzle adventure The Turing Test is coming to Nintendo Switch next month.

We start the week with news of another game getting ported to Nintendo Switch. This time it’s Bulkhead Interactive’s first-person puzzle game, The Turning Test.

Assuming the role of Ava Turing, an engineer from the International Space Agency, players must uncover the mystery of a missing crew stationed on Jupiter’s moon, Europa.

The game’s description is a checklist of familiar sci-fi tropes: a remote space base, an untrustworthy AI, dangerous secrets, and so on. However, The Turing Test rises above the cliches with cunning puzzle design and a well-told story that neatly ties into Alan Turing’s famous behavioural intelligence test.

The Turing Test was released on PC and Xbox One in 2016, before coming to PlayStation 4 the following year. Speaking about the Nintendo Switch port, lead game designer, Howard Philpott, says:

“Seeing the all the love from players for the original release of The Turing Test was overwhelming for our small team – and now 3 years later being able to bring that experience to a host of new players in their homes (and on the go!) is extremely exciting for us. We can’t wait to share those moments of puzzle, exploration and discovery with a totally new audience on the Nintendo Switch!”

The Turning Test - Nintendo Switch

The game is one of a number of titles developed in Unreal Engine 4 to make the leap to Nintendo Switch. If the likes of Fortnite, Abzü, and Dragon Quest XI are any indication, the game should be perfectly at home on the small (or large) screen.

Take a look at The Turing Test in action in the new Switch trailer. The game will be released via the Nintendo eShop on February 7, 2020. It’s priced at £14.99/$19.99/€19.99 and comes with a 10% discount at launch.

Visit our new releases page for the latest Switch, Xbox and PlayStation games. You can also follow Thumbsticks on FacebookGoogle News, Twitter, and Flipboard.

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Remedy gives incredible prize to Control photo mode contest winner

The winner, a talented video game photographer, received a very special bundle from the Federal Bureau of Control.

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Steffi McMaken Control Remedy winning photo
@StefanieMcMaken

The winner, a talented video game photographer, received a very special bundle from the Federal Bureau of Control.

Photo modes have become a popular addition to games. They’re not always in at release – developers have to prioritise bug fixing and polish in the run-in to release – but they tend to get patched in fairly quickly.

Why? Because people absolutely love them.

It makes sense for developers, too. Giving your fans an easy way to not only share your game, but make it look brilliant? It’s a marketing no-brainer. And there are some very talented virtual photographers out there, making games look very pretty indeed. (They’re certainly far better at capturing the beauty of video games than a reviewer trying to hit a deadline, that’s for sure.)

Remedy, developer of the brilliant Control, added a photo mode soon after release (after performance and bug fixing). It was the first piece of post-release content for the game. And why wouldn’t you when your game is as visually striking as Control?

Remedy also ran a photo mode contest, with prizes on offer for the top three, including t-shirts, posters, and other cool contraband from the Federal Bureau of Control. The overall winner, Stefanie McMaken, has now received her prize. It’s a bit special.

https://twitter.com/StefanieMcMaken/status/1220892760691167232?s=20

(That’s a framed print of her winning entry, signed on the back by over 50 of the crew at Remedy, plus a letter from the Federal Bureau of Control. Suitably redacted, naturally.)

This might be Steffi’s first competition win, but she’s no stranger to virtual photography.

“I’ve always liked to take screenshots before – to me, it’s like taking pictures on your journey through a video game,” Stefanie told Thumbsticks via direct message. “I like to look at them later, remembering a certain mission perhaps, a really emotional moment or an epic boss fight. But Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was the first game I’ve played that had an actual Photo Mode. That’s what also made me go back to check out Twitter, and, to my pleasant surprise, there really was such a thing as virtual photography! I was delighted to see people sharing what amazing moments they managed to capture!”

Steffi also hosts #PhotoModeMonday, a Twitter hashtag (like #AdventureGameFriday or #ScreenshotSaturday) that celebrates the best of virtual photography. On Mondays, obviously.

“Strictly speaking, I am just temporarily hosting it,” she said. Stefanie is minding the store while the hashtag’s originator, Twitter user @PhotoModeAddict, is out of action through illness. “I promised I would keep it alive until he returns.”

“With Control, what fascinated me immediately was the different genre. As wonderful as it is, we’ve all ridden horses through beautiful landscapes by now, we’ve raced cars through numerous cities and travelled through space (not that any of that ever gets old) but being in a… basically, possessed house? Where all kinds of crazy sh*t can happen? Now that sounded intriguing! Plus – big bonus – it came with a photo mode!”

“So, when Remedy held that #CaptureControl contest, it was a no brainer,” Steffi said. “The photo mode they put in is also so nice and simple to navigate and manoeuvre! It also comes with some really sweet filters – that’s how I got my shot to look like that.”

“I am still psyched over it, they certainly put in an effort to frame it so nicely, too,” she continued. “I am utterly impressed with Remedy!”

We always had our suspicions that Remedy was one of the good guys. Talking to Steffi about how much this very personal package means to her, we couldn’t be surer of our instincts.


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New Nintendo Switch releases: January 27-31, 2020

Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition headlines this week’s lineup of new eShop releases for the Nintendo Switch.

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New Nintendo Switch eShop releases
Nintendo / Thumbsticks

Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition headlines this week’s lineup of new eShop releases for the Nintendo Switch.

Cardboard Computer’s Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition is our eShop release of the week by some distance. The game debuted way back in 2013 and has received four acts – plus a few interludes – in the years since. The TV Edition includes all content released to date and the concluding fifth and final act. It’s a remarkable piece of game design and storytelling, and another essential Switch purchase.

Other new releases include Coffee Talk, an interesting new adventure game from Toge Productions. Set within a fantasy Seattle coffee shop, players meet a colourful cast of characters – including orcs, aliens and mermaids – and endeavour to solve their problems with warm conversation and cups of tasty java.

Finally, in the week that Brexit arrives, cheer yourself up with Not Tonight: Take Back Control Edition, a “time-pressure RPG” set against a backdrop of political turmoil in Europe.

Here’s the current lineup of confirmed new Switch games. We’ll update the lineup if things change throughout the week.

Nintendo Switch releases: January 27-31, 2020

Monday, January 27, 2020

  • Motorcycle Mechanic Simulator
  • Super Tennis

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

  • Actual Sunlight
  • Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
  • It came from space and ate our brains

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

  • Coffee Talk
  • Horse Farm
  • Music Racer

Thursday, January 30, 2020

  • Arcade Archives Tecmo Bowl
  • Arc of Alchemist
  • Ascendant Hearts
  • Aviary Attorney: Definitive Edition
  • Bookbound Brigade
  • Code Shifter
  • Eclipse: Edge of Light
  • Never Again
  • Prison Princess
  • Sisters Royale
  • Skellboy
  • Speaking Simulator
  • Uoris DX

Friday, January 31, 2020

  • Ash of Gods: Redemption
  • Bridge Constructor: Ultimate Edition
  • Heroland
  • Hypercharge Unboxed
  • Indie Gems Bundle: JRPG Edition
  • Milo’s Quest
  • Not Tonight: Take Back Control Edition
  • Reknum
  • Super Battle Cards
  • Touchdown Pinball
  • Willy Jetman: Astromonkey’s Revenge

If none of these new games are to your liking, take a look at this week’s new Nintendo eShop discounts.


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New PlayStation 4 releases: January 27-31, 2020

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet headline next week’s lineup of new PlayStation releases.

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New PlayStation 4 game releases
Sony / Thumbsticks

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet are the highlights of next week’s new PlayStation 4, PS VR and PS Vita releases.

Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition is our PlayStation 4 pick of the week. The new edition encompasses all five acts – and the ‘interludes’ – of Cardboard Computer’s acclaimed adventure game. It’s an atmospheric subversion of a time-worn genre, and one to be savoured. Enjoy the journey.

Speaking of which, Typhoon Studio’s debut, Journey to the Savage Planet, is a promising science-fiction adventure with a comedic edge. If the likes of No Man’s Sky and The Outer Worlds are too daunting, this could be the perfect trip.

And speaking of games by Obsidian, the studio’s 2018 RPG Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire also arrives on PlayStation 4 next week.

Other new releases include Coffee TalkIt Came From Space And Ate Our Brains and Code Shifter. An early 80s classic also gets an update in shape of Lode Runner Legacy.

Here’s the complete lineup of next week’s new PlayStation Store releases.

New PlayStation 4 releases – January 27-31, 2020

Monday, January 27, 2020

  • No releases

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

  • Coffee Talk
  • Journey to the Savage Planet
  • Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire
  • Pro Deer Hunting
  • Shadow the Ronin
  • Vigilante Ranger

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

  • Lode Runner Legacy
  • Music Racer
  • Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire
  • Top Run

Thursday, January 30, 2020

  • Arc of Alchemist
  • Autobahn Police Simulator 2
  • Bookbound Brigade
  • Code Shifter
  • The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III
  • It Came From Space And Ate Our Brains
  • Mad Age & This Guy
  • Milo’s Quest (+ PS Vita)
  • Throw Anything

Friday, January 31, 2020

  • The Inner Friend
  • Kwaidan
  • oOo: Ascension
  • Saboteur!
  • Willy Jetman: Astromonkey’s Revenge

More gaming news from Thumbsticks

Visit our new releases page for updates on the latest PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch games. You can also follow Thumbsticks on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for a daily news delivery.

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New Xbox One releases: January 27-31, 2020

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet headline next week’s new Xbox One video game releases.

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New Xbox One game releases
Microsoft / Thumbsticks

Journey to the Savage Planet and Kentucky Route Zero headline next week’s lineup of new Xbox One releases.

Cardboard Computer’s striking point-and-click adventure game, Kentucky Route Zero, comes to an end this week with the release of its fifth and final act. Seven years in the making, it’s rightly acclaimed as a stunning example of what video games can be. It’s pretty much essential.

Comical space adventures also beckon in Journey to the Savage Planet. The debut game from Typhoon Studios is a colourful exploratory adventure in the Douglas Adams vein. Google is evidently impressed and has acquired the studio – which was set up by Ubisoft and Electronic Arts alumni – to make exclusive games for Stadia.

Other new releases include licensed motorcycle racer Supercross 3, Milo’s Quest, and Coffee Talk, a game about helping people with problems from the comforting haze of a Seattle coffee shop.

Each new release can be purchased from the Xbox One digital games store and Microsoft online store. Here’s the confirmed lineup.

New Xbox One games – January 27-31, 2020

Monday, January 27, 2020

  • Stone

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

  • It Came from Space and Ate Our Brains
  • Journey to the Savage Planet
  • Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Ultimate Edition

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

  • Milo’s Quest: Console Edition
  • Music Racer

Thursday, January 30, 2020

  • Code Shifter
  • Monster Energy Supercross 3 – Special Edition

Friday, January 31, 2020

  • Coffee Talk
  • HyperDot
  • Sky Rogue

More video games from Thumbsticks

Visit the Thumbsticks new releases page for regular updates on the latest Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 games. Follow us on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for daily gaming news updates.

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We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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