Xbox One, PC Getting Remaster Of Wacky Platformer Voodoo Vince Next Month

Right on schedule, Microsoft today announced the release date for Voodoo Vince: Remastered. The HD remake of the 2003 original will launch for Xbox One and PC on the Windows Store and Steam on April 15. The wacky puzzle-platformer is priced at $15 on all systems.

It’s an Xbox Play Anywhere title for Xbox One and Windows 10, meaning buying it once on one platform gives you access to it on the other at no extra cost. Achievements and progress are shared between platforms. This does not apply to the Steam version.

Voodoo Vince is set in New Orleans, with players taking on the role of a voodoo doll named Vince. You’ll travel through places like “crawfish-laded swamps,” graveyards, and the French Quarter as part of a journey to find Vince’s owner, Madam Charmaine.

The original was developed by Beep Industries, and that studio is also behind the remaster.

The remaster runs at 1080p/60fps with a 16:9 aspect ratio and “updated rendering and visual effects.” Also new for the remaster is Xbox Live integration and achievements, as well as rumble support.

If you’re attending PAX East this week in Boston, you can play Voodoo Vince: Remastered at the Xbox booth. Series creator Clayton Kauzlaric, who now works at Microsoft, will be at the show.

Kauzlaric said in an Xbox Wire post that he pitched Voodoo Vince to Microsoft twice and they rejected it each time before eventually agreeing to publish the game. Voodoo Vince was never made available on Xbox 360 through backwards compatibility because its game engine “used some convoluted custom code,” Kauzlaric said.

For more on the original Voodoo Vince, check out GameSpot’s review.

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    Stephen King Has Seen the New It Movie, Gives Thumbs Up

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    “… Stop worrying about it as the producers have done a wonderful job with the production.”

    It author Stephen King seems happy with the new film adaptation of his killer clown novel.

    Over on Instagram, film producer Seth Grahame-Smith shared a message from King. The post states: “Steve asked me to pass along that he saw a screening of It today and wanted to let everybody know that they should stop worrying about it as the producers have done a wonderful job with the production.”

    Grahame-Smith added as a comment that he “can die now.” Stephen King has been famously vocal about the film adaptations of his work he does and doesn’t like – most notably with Stanley Kubrick’s version of The Shining, which he did not approve of.

    Stephen King’s It stars Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise the clown, who’s seen here lurking in a sewer system. Last year, Skarsgard discussed what it’s like following in the footsteps of Tim Curry‘s iconic portrayal of the character.

    The film is set to release September 8. It is one of our biggest upcoming movies of 2017.

    Evan Campbell is a freelance writer who scripts the Daily Fix, streams games on his Twitch channel, and chats about movies and TV series on Twitter.

    EA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now Available

    EA has introduced a new game to its On the House promotion, letting you download it for free for a limited time.

    This time around it’s Syberia II, the 2004 adventure game follow-up to the acclaimed Syberia. Grabbing it while it’s free will allow you to keep it forever, as with other On the House games. You will, however, need to use Origin in order to do so.

    We don’t know how long it will be available for, but you can claim it right now on Origin. It normally costs $13.

    The system requirements, as you might expect for an older game, aren’t especially demanding. They call for a 1.5 GHz CPU, 512 MB of RAM, and a 128 MB DirectX-compatible video card. How quaint.

    EA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now Available
    EA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now AvailableEA's Next Free On The House PC Game Now Available

    In what’s likely not a coincidence, Syberia II’s release comes at an opportune time: A long-awaited sequel to it finally arrives next month. Syberia III launches for PC on April 20.

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    More Overwatch Story Content Coming This Year, Blizzard Says

    The newly announced Overwatch character Orisa did not receive an official short or a comic as previous DLC characters Sombra and Ana did, leading some to believe Blizzard was backing away from storytelling and exposition. This is not the case, according to Blizzard.

    You can expect more story-focused content for the game this year, lead writer Michael Chu said in the official Overwatch forums recently (via Chris Puckett).

    “We have a lot in the works, with Orisa and her story being the first release of the year,” he explained. “One of our goals for 2017 is to try to have more frequent story-related updates and content, so we’re very busy with that.”

    Chu went on to tease that Blizzard has “a little something else” for an Overwatch story update coming out very soon, though he did not get any more specific than that.

    More Overwatch Story Content Coming This Year, Blizzard Says

    Blizzard did release an origin story of sorts for Orisa in video form (watch it above). However, based on what Chu said, it sounds like Blizzard is planning even more for her.

    Orisa is currently available on Overwatch’s Public Test Realm, with a wider release to come later. She is a Tank-class character whose “gameplay is engineered around protection.” Her weapon is the Fusion Driver, an automatic cannon that deals constant damage but slows her movement speed. The alternate fire is Halt, which launches a charge that she can detonate to slow enemies and pull them towards the explosion.

    You can read more about Orisa here in GameSpot’s previous coverage.

    In other Overwatch news, Smite developer Hi-Rez has responded to the controversy surrounding the comparisons between its new game, Paladins, and Overwatch.

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    DayZ Creator’s Microsoft Exclusive, Ion Has Been Cancelled

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    Neither party actively working on Ion.

    DayZ creator Dean Hall’s space station-set MMO, Ion has ceased development.

    Ion was originally set to be co-developed by both Improbable and Hall’s New Zealand-based studio RocketWerkz. As reported by Eurogamer, however, both parties have now confirmed its cancellation.

    Here’s Improbable’s statement on the matter:

    “Ion was initially conceived as a project for co-development between Improbable and RocketWerkz. A lot has changed since then,” Improbable said. “Dean Hall moved back to New Zealand from London, RocketWerkz has started work on a number of other games, and we have grown increasingly into a platform for games to be deployed on [cloud-based development solution, SpatialOS].

    “We can definitely say that Improbable is not currently working on Ion. However, we have not previously commented on and cannot now comment on RocketWerkz’ current or future plans.”

    And here’s Hall’s on behalf of RocketWerkz:

    “We’re not actively working on Ion, no,” Hall said. “I am not involved in that, no. Nor is RocketWerkz studio in New Zealand. When I look at Ion, Ion could only happen with a company like Improbable, with the scale of technology like that, and that’s not a game we could do alone.”

    What’s not clear at this point is what happened to end the partnership. Hall goes on to mention how the reason he set up his studio was to try different things, and that in the early days, the team spent time experimenting around deciding how, specifically, they wanted to make games. At some point along the way, RocketWerkz made the decision to “very much focus on the projects we control in their entirety ourselves.”

    Hall goes on to say he’d rather have people annoyed he didn’t release something rather than release something he wasn’t happy with.

    Ion was originally announced live on-stage during Microsoft’s E3 2015 press conference, exclusively for Xbox One and PC. Hall’s original pitch for the game was “a game that is not a game.”

    “I want a game that is a universe. A universe built not on scripts or quests, but on the laws of physics, biology, and chemistry. A simulation MMO that explores mankind’s expansion into space; the chance to be a pioneer in a harsh universe swamped with the risk of death yet peppered with the havens of fortune.”

    The news comes following a rough period for Xbox exclusives. In January of this year, Microsoft announced development on Platinum Games’ adventure title Scalebound has ended. In March of last year, the Redmond giant cancelled both Project Knoxville and Fable Legends, and shut down both development studios in the process.

    Wesley Copeland is a freelance news writer who writes excellent bios. For more obvious statements and video game chat, you should probably follow him on Twitter.