The world keeps turning and the rumor mill keeps churning. This week we have a juicy selection of video game rumors from a number of popular franchises, including Final Fantasy, South Park, and Wipeout. Throw in the possibility of a new Rockstar game and a PlayStation 4 price drop, and you’re looking at a satisfying stack of rumors and leaks. Read on for the goods.
1. What game is Rockstar working on now?
If the 162 available jobs on its website are any indication, Rockstar Games — the makers of Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption – is in the middle of a hiring blitz. The jobs are scattered throughout the company’s offices around the world, so they’re probably not all related to a single project. Still, it’s clear the developer isn’t shutting off the lights and fading into oblivion anytime soon. It has something up its sleeve.
The details given about one of those jobs may offer a hint about a new game Rockstar is working on. In fact, after GamesRadar reported on the details, Rockstar went ahead and changed the wording in the job listing. Previously, this gameplay designer page said it was looking for someone with “advanced physical and digital prototyping skills to establish the pillars of the asymmetrical cooperative stealth experience required.”
While it’s unclear what game or parts of a game this listing could be referring to, Rockstar does have one franchise in which stealth plays a major role: Manhunt. Alternately, the listing could refer to the seemingly-forgotten game Agent, which Rockstar announced in 2007. The game was planned to be a PlayStation 3 exclusive set during the Cold War, but it never materialized. Whether the job listing refers to one of those games going into development or some other title, we’ll have to wait and see.
2. Is the PS4 getting a $50 price cut?
PlayStation 4 is selling like hotcakes, far faster than its closest competition, the Xbox One. So it was surprising when Sony announced a price cut for Japan during this year’s Tokyo Game Show. The big question remains whether that price cut will come to the United States.
While Sony hasn’t announced anything to that effect yet, Twitter user Wario64 noticed that Target posted the above image on its website, indicating a $50 price cut on the console. If you clicked through to buy it, however, the PS4 still costs the usual $400. Did Target jump the gun and accidentally let it slip that a $50 price cut is forthcoming? It’s unclear, but it wouldn’t be surprising, seeing as Sony cut the price in Japan.
As for why Sony would cut the price when the PS4 is selling so well, my guess would be it wants to compete on even footing against Microsoft’s $350 Xbox One for the holiday season. Microsoft’s fourth quarter game lineup is much stronger than Sony’s, with standouts like Halo 5: Guardians and Rise of the Tomb Raider.
3. Unreleased South Park game discovered
Happy Console Gamer has acquired an Xbox developer kit that’s home to what appears to be an early version of an unreleased South Park game. Apparently a developer called Buzz Monkey Software was hired to make a game based on the animated show, but never finished the project. The game, which doesn’t seem to have come out of the pre-alpha stage, looks a lot like The Simpsons: Hit and Run. Check it out in the video above.
4. Is button configuration coming to Xbox One?
This one is more than a rumor, but less than an official confirmation. For starters, we know that Microsoft is releasing an Elite controller for Xbox One that has all kinds of fancy features, like a swappable D-pad and reconfigurable buttons. The only problem? It costs $150. So when someone tweeted at Xbox executive Mike Ybarra to ask why remapping buttons is reserved for Elite controllers, Ybarra responded by saying, “It’s coming for all controllers soon.”
Since the feature has yet to be officially announced, there’s still no word on when “soon” will happen, but this would put the Xbox One on par with the PlayStation 4, which has had re-configurable buttons for a while now. If you’re wondering why button remapping is a big deal, check out this Polygon article to learn all about it.
5. Could the Wipeout series continue?
One of the premier racing game franchises of the early PlayStation era was the fast, futuristic Wipeout series. A total of nine entries came out between 1995 and 2012, ending when Sony shut down developer SCE Studio Liverpool.
That may sound like the end of the road for Wipeout, but Sony worldwide studios president Shuhei Yoshida recently suggested the series could continue. Speaking at EGX in London, GameStop reports that Yoshida said “never say never.”
He continued, ”There are many IPs that we kind of stopped iterating with new games. One of the reasons is we always love to work on new IP. From my standpoint I try to balance the number of games in a franchise. In the future there might be a chance to come back to a game like Wipeout.”
In other words, don’t hold your breath, but don’t give up hope either.
6. Here’s a look at a canceled Final Fantasy XII spin-off
GameSpot has a meaty, in-depth look at a scrapped spin-off of Final Fantasy XII. The game, which was in development for six months at Grin Studios before the developer had to close its doors due to cashflow problems, looks like it might have been pretty good. It also would have been the first installment of Final Fantasy to be developed outside of Japan. The game was going to be called Fortress and would have been an action-RPG. You can read about it and look at lots of pretty concept art here in part 1 and here in part 2.
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