All posts by Phil Kowalski

A lifelong gamer, staring at the wrong side of the forties, I'm a huge Halo series fan. Started gaming way back in the days of the Amstrad CPC464. Midlander through birth, married with son, COD virgin, so be gentle. Twitter: @PhilK_TiX

Sci-Fi fantasy title ELEX dated for Xbox


Who doesn’t love an open-world action-packed RPG epic? Well, apart from you, (you know who you are, and we’re watching), Piranha Bytes along with THQ Nordic love the genre. They’ve announced today, the release date and Collector’s Edition details for their next epic, ELEX.

So, what can you expect from ELEX (that’s the correct way to format it too, you appear to have to shout it)? Well, seeing as this comes from the creators of Risen and Gothic, you’re going to have to set your bar pretty high.

Higher than that.

That’ll do it.

ELEX is a hand-crafted action role-playing game that is set in a post-apocalyptic science-fantasy universe. A precious, limited resource has landed on the planet, crash landed actually, in the form of a meteor. This unleashes great power and opens the door to magic, with the ability to re-sculpt life into new forms. You’ll be able to choose a faction, pick a companion to influence the world with and then ponder the countless weapons and fighting styles you’ll have to choose from.

Grab a shotgun, lay your hands on a flamethrower, pick up a plasma rifle or be a little more basic with swords, axes and bows. The choice is all yours in this seamless open world full of mutated creatures, original characters, powerful action and not forgetting the deep moral choices. Every decision taken will hammer the future of the world in your game.

THQ Nordic aren’t content with merely announcing a release date, oh, no. You should know them better than that by now. They’ve also released details of the Collector’s Edition of ELEX and what you’ll be getting if you decide to go for it. Inside that Collector’s Edition, you’ll find:

  • A 10-inch high figurine of an Alb Mage
  • A 2-inch amulet in the form of a combat drone
  • A cloth map, showing the world of Magalan
  • The original game score on CD
  • An artbook
  • The game’s manual
  • Obviously, the game itself

More details will surely emerge on the price point for the Collector’s Edition of ELEX closer to the release date, which brings me neatly on to that subject.

ELEX is currenly looking at a release date of the 17th of October.

Here’s the cinematic trailer that accompanies this news. Enjoy.

New trailer hits for Micro Machines World Series

Micro Machines

Codemasters and Koch Media have today released the next gameplay trailer for the evergreen and anticipated Micro Machines Word Series. Racing has always been at the heart of Micro Machines and Codemasters are the arguable kings of the racing genre.

Micro Machines World Series sees the action focus firmly on the cars and racing, with hundreds of customisations available. You can race in style and make sure you stand out on the starting line.

Chief game designer, Gavin Cooper:

For the first time in a Micro Machines game, every car has its own entirely distinct personality, and arsenal! Each gives players a different way to play and enjoy the game, meaning fans of the series will have plenty to sink their teeth into. Players will quickly gain an affinity with a particular vehicle and find it suits their style of play. You can master one vehicle by collecting all the 25+ customisations, but then have a whole host of variety choosing and mastering all the other vehicles in the game.

So, each car will have a slightly different feel, sound and even handling in Micro Machines World Series. Choose from 12 very individual vehicles, from the twitchy but agile rear wheel drive drift-prone hotrod of El Incendio to the scarily good all-rounder of Hank N. Stein’s monster truck. That’s not all the game will offer though.

Micro Machines World Series will boast a mix of classic and all-new tracks and arenas. New locations, like the workshop will sit snugly alongside the classics, like the games room and classroom.

Players will also get the opportunity to pick up Hasbro-branded NERF blasters and NERF power-ups. These can be deployed in and around Hasbro-branded locations which include a Ouija Board and a Hungry Hungry Hippos battle.

All of this is commented on by the voice talents of Prince Vultan himself. Yes, Brian Blessed shouts majestically at you from the comfort of your armchair as you battle to win each race. What more could you ask for?

Micro Machines World Series is scheduled ot hit the Xbox One on the 23rd of June.

Star Trek Online Season 13 Escalation dated


Here at TiX Towers, we love a good sci-fi romp and Perfect World Entertainment’s Cryptic Studios Trekkie-fest MMORPG, Star Trek Online delivers on pretty much all levels. They’ve revealed yet another Season update for the game as, like the very universe it is set in, it expands ever more. Season 13 – Escalation is the next to be announced for console, along with a release date, and will see players discovering challenging new missions over two new episodes.

The featured episode in Escalation is called ‘Mirrors and Smoke’ and will see captains embarking on a journey to New Kentar to defend the planet from the Tzenkethi. The other episode, ‘Survivor’ follows the exploits of Sela, Empress of the Romulan Star Empire. Escalation also marks the official debut of War Games on Xbox One. This new system will allow two teams to battle head-to-head in competitive PvE scenarios, all for some pretty awesome rewards.

So, Escalation, ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ will take you to New Kentar, where you will strive to complete a mission to help the Lukari learn more about their past. Their exploration of the planet’s bustling urban lanscape is soon interrupted by the Tzenkethi who have warped in and threatened to decimate the colony. ‘Survivor’ concludes the story of Sela of Romulus, who is voiced by Denise Crosby.

War Games in Escalation will feature 5v5 queues that allow players to competitively solve puzzles, battle against each other and rather excitedly, race starships. If I give her any more, she’ll blow, Captain! Rewards for being victorious in these War Games include class-specific gear for starships, which are also making their debut on console.

When will this be available? Well, it’ll be here before Seth MacFarlane’s trek-spoof, The Orville, that’s for sure, with a scheduled release date of the 6th of June.

Here’s a teaser trailer.

Prepare to let the insults fly in Oh Sir!

Oh Sir

There’s nothing apparently more enjoyable than throwing around a few well-thought out insults. Indeed, there are some comedians who have made an entire living out of flinging a clever insult at someone. Have you ever hankered after a means to digitally create an well-constructed slight at friends and family? The good news is that very soon, you’ll be able to do just that on your Xbox One. Oh Sir! The Insult Simulator is coming soon to the console.

Choose one of many fascinating characters, each with their own set of insecurities and weaknesses, to battle against either locally or online. You can rack-up combos, continuations and criticals in your quest to make your opponent cry like the squalling, nappy-wearing baby that they are.

Spread affront to everyone in the world that has internet access with Oh Sir, you wrinkly bread-faced moose-puppy. It’s all quite Monty Python in it’s construction. So, don’t let the parrot die for nothing. Tell that grumpy old bat that her husband fancied the rotting goose lying face-down in a pond or that her dog shaved itself in order to gain affection from a certain Z-list celebrity.

Insulting people is fun, that’s a well-known scientific fact and if you didn’t know that, then the cave you’re living in is infested with Piers Morgan and you smell of Elderberries.

Oh Sir will be hitting the Xbox Live Marketplace and running away laughing sometime this Spring.

The Cloaked Ascendancy update hits Neverwinter

The Cloaked Ascendancy

How often have you wanted to lose yourself in a huge quest to save an entire city? Perfect World Entertainment have a very fluid situation with Cryptic Studios’ MMORPG, Neverwinter. They’ve just released yet another major update to the Neverwinter stage, keeping the game fresh and introducing new challenges to the player. Now you can embark on a quest to save the city of Neverwinter as The Cloaked Ascendancy has been unleashed for players on Xbox One.

A group of four mages have been ripped from the Cloak Tower during the Spellplague. These fours mages, The Cloaked Ascendancy, have a power derived from the Far Realm and they’re busy wielding it to try to claim the throne from Lord Neverember. This new update will feature a new campaign, adventure zone, a familiar new dungeon, dynamic skirmish and more.

Return to Neverwinter, dear adventurer, following the events of Storm King’s Thunder, to honour a fallen friend in the recently reclaimed River District. The ceremony is interrupted by a mysterious band of mages from the Far Realm, led by Gyrion the Ascendant, who look to carry out an evil plot to disrupt the city. The River District, a new adventure zone, sets the stage for players to uncover the Cloaked Ascendancy’s evil plot. Complete and all-new campaign, battle in a new skirmish, conquer a new, high-end Spellplague Caverns dungeon and more. This new update will feature:

  • A new adventure zone in The River District – Now occupied by the Cloaked Ascendancy with areas reflecting the resident Far Realm mage.
  • The Reclaim the River District new campaign – Defeat the four mages, one quest at a time, to help return it to the bustling economic centre it once was, before the eruption or Mt. Hotenow
  • Spellplague Caverns Dungeon – To complete the this campaign, you will return to an original Neverwinter location for this master dungeon. Face off with members of the Ascendancy nad try to find new loot.
  • The Illusionist’s Gambit – This new Skirmish offers a dynamic challenge for both max and low-level adventurers. Enemies, settings and challenges all randomly shift creating new experiences.
  • Four new Artifact Weapon sets – Players can earn four new weapon sets, harnessing the power of the Cloaked Ascendancy mages. Embrace the power of the Far Realm with the Mirage, Fey, Lifeforged and Aboleth weapons.

Neverwinter: The Cloaked Ascendancy is available free to play for Xbox Live Gold members, now.

Wonder Boy introduced to Wonder Girl in new trailer

Wonder Boy

When French developer, LizardCube, revealed that they’d be creating a faithful but updated take on Wonder Boy, I was fairly excited. They recently confirmed that the game would feature a retro mode that would allow the player to mix and match the look of the original with a modern backing track and vice-versa. All of this is awesome for the retro-gamer. Now, Lizardcube and DotEMU have revealed a new feature to Wonder Boy: the Dragon’s Trap; Wonder Girl.

That’s right, along with Wonder Boy in his classic form, you will be able to play as the totally awesome, totally radical Wonder Girl. The developer has suggested that bringing the game to a larger, more diverse audience necessitated sprinkling the classic game with many improvements, one of which is a female playable character who is just as strong and just as fierce as the titular male hero.

Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap will faithfully recreate the layout and playability of the orignal SEGA cult-classic release. Featuring a huge interconnected world and allowing you to utilise the differing abilities of up to six playable forms for the hero. The game will also feature Hu-Girl, a long awaited co-star to Hu-Man. Switch from a modern look and sound to a retro-tastic 8-bit classic graphics and audio experience at any time during the game. Change it up to suit your mood, across the three difficulty levels.

A good curse makes for a good game. The Meka-Dragon has turned a lonesome adventurer into a half-human – half-lizard monstrosity. Explore the many traps of Monster Land in an effort to find a cure and defeat many stuff-throwing, curse-wielding dragons along the way. Turn into a Lizard, a Mouse, a Piranha, a Lion and a Hawk on your transformational journey back to being all human again.

Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap will be cursing the Xbox One from the 18th of April.

Season 12 – Reckoning coming to Star Trek Online


Star Trek Online has a growing fanbase. Whether you play every single day without fail or if you dip in and out when you fancy a spin in a starship, this MMORPG from Cryptic Studios and Perfect World Entertainment is great fun to play. It’s had a lot of update attention from the developers too, not merely resting on their Federation laurels. The latest update to be announced for the Xbox version of the game has been recently released for the PC version, Season 12 – Reckoning. Perfect World Entertainment have now announced a release date for the update.

Before I come to that, let’s have a little look at the main features that this update contains. Season 12 – Reckoning will send players out on a mission with the Lukari to investigate an ominous new threat, the dreaded Tzenkethi. This update will grant captains access to a new featured episode, a crafting school, two Tzenkethi space queues and a full space battlezone.

Season 12 – Reckoning centres around the featured episode, “Of Signs and Portents”. Captains will join the Lukari on a mission to investigate the weaponised use of protomatter in a new region of the Alpha Quadrant. Further evidence leads you to the Tzenkethi, a highly intelligent, military-driven, advanced alien species who plan on using the deadly protomatter to build a bomb capable of destroying entire planets. You will team up with the legendary Klingon, General Rodek; voiced by Tony Todd; to form an alliance and find a way to stop the Tzenkethi from enacting a potentially cataclysmic attack.

Season 12 – Reckoning also unlocks some expansive new content for players to explore and discover, including the Lukari Restoration Initiative reputation. There is also a new Kits and Modules Research School, a full space battlezone and two new space queues, “Gravity Kills” and “The Tzenkethi Front”.

The PC version currently includes a new Lukari Science Vessel, the T6 Lukari Ho’kuun, to earn through daily anniversary missions and completing the new featured episode. The “Gravity Kills” space queue will see you lead an attack on a Tzenkethi protomatter facility to collect Hawking particles to drop their special defences. In “The Tzenkethi Front”, players will defend the Eta Serpentis system from a Tzenkethi attack. You can do this by turning their own protomatter weapons against them.

Star Trek Online welcomes Season 12 – Reckoning to Xbox One from the 18th of April.

Talent Not Included set to make its Xbox bow


In my humble opinion, there aren’t nearly enough games based on the thespian scene. Frima Studios, a Canadian indie developer, are about to address this. Talent Not Included is heading to Xbox One and the developer has released exactly when curtain-up will be.

Talent Not Included is an action combat platformer where mechanical animals, hard-headed monsters and rotating cylinders will challenge you in one of the most demanding platform experiences to hit the console scene. Set in the land of Notthatmuchfarther, the game tells the story of three monsters; Zordok, Derp and Kevin. All three are huge fans of slaughter, bloodbaths and Shakespeare.

One night, as they were all bored out of their monstrous skulls, they decided to put on their own play. Unfortunately, nothing went as planned. This was mostly because Zot, a demonic critic hired for the occasion, chose three of the most mediocre actors for his own amusement. These actors all have strong personalities, and Zot is hoping to sow hell on stage.

You will play as one of these three terrible thespians in the hopes of making a huge profit from your frankly abysmal performance. Break a leg!

The game will feature a basketful of combat, taking place over cylindrical platforms. Absurd humour also heavily features as well as a local co-op mode. Co-op will allow you to go head-to-head from the comfort of your armchair, guiding your hapless actor through paper-craft inspired levels.

Talent Not Included will have it’s opening night soon. Expect curtain-up promptly on the 5th of April.

Story-driven puzzler Peregrin coming to Xbox


Domino Digital are a small developer, with a growing reputation. The studio behind Calvino Noir have teamed up with Green Man Gaming to bring a new story-driven puzzle title to Xbox, called Peregrin.

Peregrin follows the adventures of Abi, a young member of a scavenger tribe. She leaves her sanctuary to undertake an epic journey across the wastes of The Divide. She seeks to fulfill a prophecy, to beg the vengeful Gods for forgiveness and to restore life to the ravaged lands of her home.

Peregrin will take you on a moving journey across eerie landscapes, facing complex puzzles and dangerous creatures in a beautifully realised world. The game features a minimalist art-style with a fully-voiced story that carries you along on an emotional journey of personal and collective loss. Solve complex environmental puzzles that require you to use Abi’s arcane powers to temporarily possess creatures in the world. All of this is set to a touching, almost haunting, score by Chris Randle.

This captivating sci-fi adventure pushes the solitary traveller on a perilous voyage through the haunted ruins of a lost civilisation. If Abi is to fulfil the ancient prophecy, she must find a way to restore the fallen world of Peregrin, by using mystical powers to take control of a range of creatures. Possess simple animals to The Divide’s hostile guardians, all in an effort to solve cryptic puzzles and survive Abi’s battles.

The game will be spread over five chapters, comprising over 60 visually stunning scenes and incorporate intuitive and rewarding gameplay. Investigate mysterious monoliths and strange artefacts to reveal the secrets of these fallen lands.

Domino Digital’s founder, Dan Walters;

We’re very excited to be releasing Peregrin this year. We’ve put a lot of love and hard work into this game and we can’t wait for players to experience Abi’s story as she crosses the wasteland to save her tribe.

Peregrin is scheduled to release on Xbox One later in 2017.

Will you be a Cheetah in the new Injustice 2 trailer?


There can be fewer more fun and exciting things than taking two super heroes and making them face off in a battle. Forgetting the drudgery of Batman Vs Superman, as let’s face it, it was simply awful, the sight of two virtually indestructable super-human beings beating seven bells out of each other is mouth-watering at worst. NetherRealm Studios, with Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment are bringing a second helping of this fun, based primarily off the DC hero universe, in Injustice 2.

They have released a new gameplay trailer, featuring the fighting talents of the feral Cheetah, in preparation for the impending release. Watch on as Cheetah performs acrobatic kicks, slashes, jumps and throws against the likes of Wonder Woman and Deadshot. Cheetah joins the roster with the already announced, and trailered, Firestorm, Doctor Fate, Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Black Canary. These will join the usual likes of Batman, Superman, Swamp Thing and other DC universe powerhouses, ready to duke it out, mano-a-mano.

Injustice 2 will feature those mentioned and others in a massive roster of DC Super Heroes and Super Villains. Just as with the first release, it will allow the player to build and power-up the ultimate version of their favourite DC characters.

Injustice 2 will be heading to Xbox One from the 19th of May, and is mostly available for pre-order now, in three flavours, Standard, Digital Deluxe and Ultimate Editions. Digital Deluxe Edition will include three extra DLC fighters and the Powergirl character skin for Supergirl.

Ultimate Edition, with pre-orders opening soon, will include nine extra DLC fighters, the Powergirl skin, plus alternate looks for The Flash and Green Lantern.