5 New Video Game Rumors: ‘Tony Hawk,’ ‘Batman,’ and More

Source: Microsoft

Source: Microsoft

The video game industry is large and porous, so it’s only natural that whispers and leaks about upcoming releases would make their way around the Internet. Just like clockwork, five exciting video game rumors have drifted into the ether recently. Below, we run down the Internet’s hottest leaks and rumors, and try to determine how likely it is that they’re true.

What “top secret projects” does Microsoft have in store?

Not so much a rumor as a springboard for rampant speculation, this item comes from a Microsoft job listing for a senior software engineer. It says, “A new team has formed in Microsoft’s Xbox division with a specific purpose: to push the envelope of today’s and tomorrow’s technology as we explore new ideas from the ground floor.”

The team appears to be focused on the ways the Kinect could be used to set the Xbox One apart from the competition. Most of the work will be “top secret,” the listing says. “We will fail, and fail fast, on some projects.” As for what projects the team might work on, we’re not sure — and it sounds like the company itself is unsure at this point.

However, Microsoft has been rumored to be toying with headset-based virtual reality and augmented reality projects. It doesn’t take a leap of the imagination to wonder if these projects could be linked to the Kinect.

Source: Activision via Facebook

Source: Activision via Facebook

Is a new Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater console game underway?

The Tony Hawk skateboarding games used to skate to the top of the charts, thanks to their tight controls, unique (for the time) gameplay, and ability to make you feel like the titular pro skater himself as he pulled off insane tricks on a half pipe. Then the bottom fell out of the series, and the games just stopped coming out.

At Sony’s press conference at the Consumer Electronics Show last week, Mr. Hawk himself took the stage to tease an upcoming title. “New console game this year on the PlayStation 4,” he said. “I’ll give you a hint: It has TH in it.” There’s still no word on what the game will be like, when in 2015 it will come out, or if it will be released for platforms other than the PS4. But fans of skating games can rest assured that a new Tony Hawk game is in the works.

Source: Mema Haxx via YouTube

Source: Mema Haxx via YouTube

3. Is Duck Hunt getting an Amiibo?

Nintendo has already released two waves of its Amiibo figurines, and announced what characters will be coming up in the third wave, launching in February. Nowhere to be found in any announcement, however, is a figurine based on the NES game Duck Hunt, whose dog character appears in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.

However, a sleuthing Super Smash Bros. player appears to have found evidence of such a figurine on the Wii U game’s disc. It’s not clear how YouTube user Mema Haxx unlocked the Amiibo, or if the video is legit. But if it is, we can look forward to seeing a whole new, as-yet-unannounced wave of Amiibos, including “Duck Hunt Duo.”

Source: Warner Bros.

Source: Warner Bros.

4. Does Batman: Arkham Knight’s limited edition statue contain a spoiler?

Sometimes spoilers appear in the unlikeliest of places. This one comes from an inscription on a statue that’s included in the limited edition of the upcoming game Batman: Arkham Knight. The contents of the limited edition can be found at its Amazon UK page.

SPOILER ALERT for anyone who would rather go into Batman: Arkham Knight with no prior knowledge. Okay, ready? The inscription in question says “From a grateful city, in memory of the Gotham Knight.” Which implies a hugely important event that sure seems like it will happen in the game. Plus, Warner Bros. has been calling this the “conclusion” of the Rocksteady Games’ Batman: Arkham trilogy. Batman: Arkham Knight is slated to release on June 2. So long, Bats; we hardly knew ya.

Source: Rare Ltd.

Source: Rare Ltd.

5. Is Rare working on a new Banjo Kazooie game?

Rare, a Microsoft-owned developer, has been working on an unannounced project ever since releasing Kinect Sports Rivals last year. Now, we’re finally starting to see some rumors about what it might be. Rare composer Robin Beanland recently posted an image on Twitter of some hand-written musical notes, adding “This is a HUGE year for Rare…and these notes :-)”.

The notes don’t seem to represent any recognizable tune, but you do collect musical notes in the Banjo Kazooie games. And in November, a leaker posted a cryptic message on NeoGAF indicating that a new game in the series would be announced at this year’s E3 conference in June. Could it all add up to a new colorful platformer for Xbox One? Or is everyone misreading the tea leaves? We’ll have to wait to find out.

Follow Chris on Twitter @_chrislreed

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