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Streets of Rage 4 devs on giving the game's soundtrack the attention it deserves

Continuing the legacy

The Streets of Rage series provides some amazing beat'em-up action, but its become equally as well-known for its extremely catchy soundtracks. We recently saw that Streets of Rage 4 is going to include a star-studded team of composers to bring the new installment to life, and in an interview with Game Designer Jordi Asensio, we learn about the team's reason for going all-out.

Streets of Rage games are like music albums. It’s an adventure; it tells a story through the game. The music of the originals is so good that people, myself included, still listen to the soundtrack. So from the beginning, we wanted to give music the attention it deserves, and thanks to Cyrille Imbert (Dotemu CEO) and Alex Aniel from Bravewave Productions, we managed to find tremendous artists, and not only from the video game industry.

The underground area of Fire Emblem: Three Houses' "Cindered Shadows" DLC was originally considered for the main game

The ground beneath your feet

Fire Emblem: Three Houses' "Cindered Shadows" DLC lets you explore the Abyss, a sprawling town that's hidden underneath the Garreg Mach Monastery. In an interview with Nintendo Dream magazine, director Toshiyuki Kusakihara reveals that this location was originally considered for the main game, but it proved too big to handle.

“We started the actual production of the side story’s content much later, but we had wanted to incorporate the idea of Garreg Mach having this underground labyrinth since the early stages of development. It ended up being cut due to the sheer amount of content, though. When planning the DLC, the side story actually came from a desire to bring back the concepts we had originally omitted. It wasn’t necessarily that we were retrofitting the information. Rather, we were expanding upon the setting and some foreshadowed elements that had been there since production of the main game. The protagonist’s mother, for instance, would fall into that category.”

Sakurai explains how the Smash Bros. Ultimate 'Picture of the Day' series started, and why he keeps it up

A man of dedication

Did you know that Sakurai has been doing a Smash Bros. Ultimate "Picture of the Day" Twitter post every day since Dec. 27th, 2019? In the latest issue of Famitsu, Sakurai explains how the whole idea got started, and why he keeps it up. Check out the info below, courtesy of a translation from PushDustIn, Nokoloc, and Sephazon.

- the Picture of the Day idea is something Sakurai has done for the staff since the development of Kid Icarus: Uprising
- Sakurai uploads the pictures to a private network that is only accessible within the studio
- sometimes the PoTD interferes with his meetings or when he’s driving
- Sakurai even posts them to Twitter on weekends
- the first Smash PoTD came about back in August 2012
- at the time, Smash for 3DS/Wii U was being built
- for Smash Bros. Ultimate, Sakurai's been using pictures from later in development (around March 2018 to now)
- Sakurai first started PoTD as a way to create a good atmosphere among the hundreds of staff
- since every picture varies, it creates an exciting atmosphere for the staff
- Sakurai keeps up the posts as a way for the project to be more open to the entire development team
- because these projects are so large, staff may not see the bigger picture, so it’s important to bring the team together with PotD
- whenever a good opportunity arises, Sakurai may take several photos at once
- when shooting, Sakurai doesn’t think of a ‘story,’ but instead uses a random assortment of fighters and stages
- Sakurai is usually quite busy with development, and these posts do take some time to write
- ‘Picture of the Day’ began as a service directed towards our staff, but it's also become entertaining for fans

Microsoft says their relationship with Nintendo is great, but they "don't love" fans wondering if each new Xbox game will hit Switch

The honeymoon is over

Microsoft and Nintendo have teamed up on a number of projects over the last couple of years, which has lead to titles like Cuphead and Ori and the Blind Forest coming to the platform. Could we end up seeing more Xbox games come to the platform? In an Unlocked interview with Microsoft's Phil Spencer, it sounds like the Xbox brand might want to take a step away from that for awhile. Check out Spencer's full comments below.

The relationship with Nintendo is great. Doug Bowser and I, we talk often. Furakawa-san, the CEO of Nintendo, and I know each other well and we have conversations.

I will say that I think the individual IP by IP to different platforms, I can see can kind of get confusing to customers over time. We've been learning, some of our development partners have really wanted to go do this, and we want to support the desires of our creative talent. Some of this have been partner lead.

I think more and more about what does a full Xbox experience mean on different platforms. Right now, it seems like when any game comes out, there's that, "is this one going here is this one going there." I'd rather be able to set more of an Xbox-level expectation for our fans on where things are going to go. I thought we did that with our first party when we talked about games shipping on Xbox and PC, and I got some blow-back from certain people in certain groups on that, but at least we set an expectation on that. I'd rather see us get to that point on the different pieces of hardware we're on, so I guess I'll kind of leave it there.

I definitely have a ton of respect for the role that Nintendo plays, and I love having great games on their platform. I don't really love this idea that for every one of our games, there becomes this little rumor on it "is it going to end up on the Switch or not." I feel we should set a better expectation with our fans than that.

Thanks to Dondom95 for the heads up!

Dodge Roll explains where the idea for Exit the Gungeon came from

Exit stage left

Enter the Gungeon was a massive hit on Switch, and now the follow-up Exit the Gungeon is available as well. In an interview with Nintendo, Dodge Roll's David Crooks explains how the spin-off came to be.

Enter the Gungeon was born from silly ideas and goofy puns (we actually had the title before even having a game concept), and during that game’s development our team had always pondered the idea of how our heroes would leave the Gungeon once they found what they were looking for. We loved the idea that after all of what you went through in the game that the way out would be as simple as an elevator. After meeting Singlecore Games (our co-development partner on Exit the Gungeon) we merged some of the ideas in another game they had and found a way to continue this saga, complete the journey of the Gungeoneer’s escape, and still have a variation on the original’s gameplay that felt fresh enough to stand alone.

Nihon Falcom talks about the new features of The Legend Of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV

Lots of new features to enjoy

The Legend Of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV was just announced for Switch earlier today, and it's going to see release sometime in 2021. In an interview with Game Informer, Nihon Falcom president and producer Toshihiro Kondo talks about the new gameplay features fans can expect from this installment.

Aside from Rean, other members of the Thor’s Branch Campus will be able to call upon Panzer Soldats. Players will also be able to use powerful Lost Arts, which are from an ancient age and have various affinities. Using these are at the expense of a full EP gauge, but their power is unmatched. We've also implemented full auto mode for the first time. It’s a convenient feature for those players who want to proceed through the story on a lower difficulty level or those who want to see everything the game has to offer.

While not a new feature, I think players should pay special attention to Quests, as IV has the most out of any game in the series. These will tie up some loose threads that have been carried on throughout the entire Trails of Cold Steel series. There are mysteries as well as information on characters who have appeared in the series that will be revealed.

Sabotage Studio talks about the influence of Super Mario RPG and Chrono Trigger on Sea of Stars

Pulling from the greats

Sabotage Studio, the team behind The Messenger, recently launched a Kickstarter for Sea of Stars, an RPG that takes place in the same universe as The Messenger. Those who checked out the Kickstarter (and helped it hit the funding goal) were quick to notice some influences on the game, and Sabotage Studio is more than willing to confirm suspicions. In an interview with Gamasutra, Sabotage's Thierry Boulanger opened up about the influence from both Chrono Trigger and Super Mario RPG.

"Chrono Trigger is great because there wasn't a transition when you got into combat, you just started fighting. In Super Mario RPG, you need to press the attack button and not just watch an animation when you attack. We wanted to have active input. When I was a kid playing any turn-based RPG I would always press the attack button hoping it would do something. I wanted our game to have that too."

Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy's Switch/PC cross-play is a bug, will be fixed in the future

The dark side will be dealt with

Last week, we caught wind of an interesting situation with Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy. While Switch players don't have any say in the online servers they were joining, PC players can join in with Switch players no problem. This means those on PC who have been playing for countless years, and are also playing with keyboard/mouse controls, can go in and absolutely mop the floor with Switch newcomers. Thankfully, that's not going to be the case much longer.

USGamer reached out to developer Asypr about the cross-play, which they claim is a bug. We also learn that a fix is in the works. Check out Asypr's full comment on the matter below.

We're absolutely thrilled and appreciative of the support that our fan community has given last week's launch of Star Wars™ Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy on PS4 and Nintendo Switch. We are aware of the current bug that allows multiplayer cross play between PC and console. As with every game we work on, we are fully committed to delivering great gaming experiences for players, which includes a fair playing field for all. A remedy for this loophole is now in the works and will be available soon.

Check out another behind-the-scenes clip for the Sonic the Hedgehog movie

Seems like a blast

We've already had one feature that gave us a behind-the-scenes look at what went into making Sonic the Hedgehog, and now a second clip has surfaced. Once again we hear from both Jim Carrey and James Marsden on their work for the film, and the fun atmosphere behind the camera.

Borderlands Legendary Collection to run 1080p/30fps on Switch, art assets have not been downgraded, motion controls included

Sounds like a serious package

2K and Gearbox are working with Ture Me Up Games and FrecturedByte to bring the Borderlands Legendary Collection to Switch. Turn Me Up Games has shared some tech specs about the ports, and it seems to be all good news.

According to the devs, the collection is going to run 1080p, and every title is going to be 30 FPS. Even better, the team specifically announced that the art assets have not been downgraded in the porting process. Finally, as the icing on the cake, the Borderlands Legendary Collection will include motion controls specifically built for this release.

Gearbox’s iconic, comedic, Looter-Shooters are back and gorgeous as ever on Nintendo Switch! We worked tireless with 2K and Gearbox to bring these ravenously requested classics to Switch in full 1080p, at 30 FPS and with no downgrading of art assets. On top of that, we included all the trimmings of the GOTY releases — and newly developed motion controls specifically built for this incredible collection.

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