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The Devil in Me is the most interactive Dark Pictures game yet

Each new entry in Supermassive Games’ and Bandai Namco’s The Dark Pictures Anthology is incrementally better than the last. Last year’s House of Ashes was the most enjoyable entry I’ve played thus far, as the game had noticeably improved lore and cast of characters. While it would have sufficed to tell another good story in The Devil in Me, Supermassive added one extra twist that makes the upcoming Dark Pictures entry much more engaging than the ones before.

Having played two hours of The Devil in Me, the standout feature is that characters can now move objects around in the environment and pick up tools. In previous games, this was mostly limited to just picking up collectibles and opening up doors. Moving around objects and picking up tools seem like inconsequential features since they’re pretty standard in most horror games, but their inclusion in this game feels like a big step forward for the series, adding a new dimension of horror.

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New cast, new tricks

The Devil in Me follows five characters who are part of a documentary film company called Lonnit Entertainment. The crew is shooting the season finale of their documentary series that focuses on the serial killer H.H. Holmes. Coincidentally, the crew gets invited to a modern-day replica of the killer’s “Murder Castle” hotel.

The preview started with me controlling Charlie, Lonnit’s CEO. With him is Erin, an intern and sound engineer. Unfortunately, Erin lost Charlie’s cigarettes, so they venture farther into the hotel to find some. What’s particularly interesting about the five characters is that they all have unique abilities in the form of tools related to their specific profession. For example, Charlie, as the CEO, often has business cards on him. He can open up locked drawers by using his business cards as a makeshift lockpick. And Mark Nestor, the cameraman, can grab items from higher-up places using his camera stand.

Erin holds a microphone in The Devil in Me.

The implementation makes each character feel more distinguishable from the others, which is important because Supermassive reuses character likenesses and models from previous entries here. Mark’s face, for example, was used in Man of Medan for one of the game’s antagonists.

However, one tool stood out to me above the others, and that was Erin’s microphone. As the sound engineer, she comes equipped with a pair of headphones and a microphone that allows her to pick up noises. When I took control of her character, the hallways were dimly lit, and I was forced to rely on sound in order to navigate around. I heard someone scream, and the sound icon in the middle of the screen would fill up more as I got closer to the source.

This particular section with Erin had me dreading what was around the corner every time I turned. It ended with her being locked in a room, and with her having asthma, she began experiencing an attack. As the rest of the crew tried to get her out, a mysterious person wearing a mask appeared in the room with her, even offering her an inhaler. I was given the option to either attack them or grab the inhaler. I chose the latter, and the mystery person grabbed Erin and put a knife to her head. But he didn’t harm her and seemingly only cut off a piece of her hair.

What followed was another interesting wrinkle of the new tool system. I noticed the number 5 was attached to the inhaler, and it decreased by one as Erin used it to calm herself down — indicating that some items have limited uses. This inclusion required me to be tactful about the choices I make: I should probably avoid situations that potentially put Erin in harm’s way. Presumably, if the number of inhaler uses runs out, Erin could permanently die in my playthrough.

More interactions

With the new interactive elements, characters can now push items like carts around in their surroundings. Mark’s section in the preview demonstrated this mechanic the most. In a library-looking area, I pushed a big shelf into a gap that allowed me to cross over to the other side. It was reminiscent of the Resident Evil 2 remake’s library section with a similar puzzle.

Mark climbs a ladder in The Devil in Me.

While these puzzles aren’t very challenging, what makes them frustrating is that sometimes it can be hard to see what you’re able to interact with. It wasn’t entirely clear to me that I was able to move that aforementioned shelf. I had an inkling that I could, but even standing directly in front of it, no button prompt showed up. So I walked around the area for five minutes, confused about how to progress. It wasn’t until I walked passed the shelf again that the prompt showed up — even though I was only a little farther away from the shelf than I was before.

Dark Pictures Anthology games have a good amount of accessibility options, including allowing players to hold down certain buttons to pass quick time events rather than repeatedly tapping them, or giving players additional time to make split-section decisions. All of those options are back in The Devil in Me, but it looks like there weren’t any additional accessibility options designed around the new interactive elements.

As laid out in the early impressions of God of War Ragnarok, I was able to apply high-contrast filters to interactive objects in my surroundings. If I got stuck on a puzzle, I was able to more easily figure out how to progress. I would’ve loved to have something similar to that for The Devil in Me so I wouldn’t be left wandering aimlessly trying to figure out exactly what to do next.

We hate Charlie

So far, though, The Devil in Me has me intrigued. It’s definitely much more grounded than previous entries, though it still has some mystical elements too. Animatronics seem to play a big role in this one, as there’s a bar area with a creepy bartender animatronic that lingered over Charlie as he was searching for a pack of cigarettes. At the beginning of Charlie’s section, an exact replica of his hat can be found hanging on a rack, and then in a later cutscene, a mysterious figure can be seen placing that hat on an animatronic that looks eerily similar to him.

An animatronic bartender in The Devil in Me.

I’m interested to see how the H.H. Holmes-inspired setting turns out, as well as discover who the mysterious person is and their motivations. I do hope that the full game tones down the cheap jump scares, as I experienced about five of them during the preview. Oh, and as an aside: I’ve already had it with Charlie, as he incessantly whines about not having his smokes. The rest of the cast agrees with me too since they call him out for acting like a baby and having temper tantrums. He’s also the only one in the crew who dismisses the creepy occurrences going around at the hotel while everyone else is spooked and wants to find a way out.

I look forward to killing him off on purpose during my playthrough when The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me launches November 18 for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

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Everything announced at The Game Awards 2022
A mech carrying things overlooks a destroyed world in Armored Core 6's reveal trailer.

The Game Awards has rolled around once again, awarding developers who made some of the year’s best games and unveiling a bunch of new trailers and game announcements. Geoff Keighley’s annual event is equal parts award show and video game showcase, and The Game Awards 2022 was no different.
Games like Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Final Fantasy XVI, and Tekken 8 made appearances, while Death Stranding 2 and Armored Core VI were revealed for the first time. There were a ton of game reveals to take in, so here's a roundup of every announcement from The Game Awards 2022.
THE GAME AWARDS 2022: Official 4K Livestream: Thursday, December 8 (7:30p ET/4:30p PT/12:30a GMT)
Hades II announced by Supergiant Games
Hades II - Reveal Trailer
Supergiant Games, the developer behind 2020's critically acclaimed Hades, revealed its next game will be a sequel to Hades. We got a look at some beautiful animation and roguelike gameplay starring the Princess of the Underworld, and we learned that the game, officially titled Hades II, will enter early access next year.
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is out on March 17
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor - Official Reveal Trailer
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor got an awesome and intense trailer at the Game Awards 2022, and voice actor Cameron Monaghan came out afterward to hype up the game further. The game is launching on March 17, 2023. 
Hideo Kojima unveils Death Stranding 2
DEATH STRANDING 2(Working Title)- TGA 2022 Teaser Trailer
It wouldn’t be a Geoff Keighley show without an appearance from Hideo Kojima, and thankfully Kojima had more to promote than a podcast this time around. We got the first trailer for the Death Stranding 2, a working title currently stylized as DS2, from Kojima Productions. This first teaser trailer is just as vague as Death Stranding's were, as it features Lea Seydoux's character traveling with al baby before talking with Norman Reedus' Sam.
Horizon Forbidden West will get an expansion set in LA next April
Horizon Forbidden West: Burning Shores | Announce Trailer
Like The Frozen Wilds for Horizon Zero Dawn, Burning Shores is a massive expansion for this year's Horizon Forbidden West. The cinematic reveal trailer shows Aloy flying around a volcanic Los Angeles archipelago before a giant creature in the Hollywood sign attacks her. Horizon Forbidden West: Burning Shores will launch on April 19, 2023.
New The Super Mario Bros. Movie clip stars a ton of Toads
The Super Mario Bros. Movie | “Mushroom Kingdom” | Official Movie Clip
Keegan Michael-Key showed up during The Game Awards to show off a new clip from The Super Mario Bros. Movie. After joking about whether Toad has a hat or just a head, he showed off a clip of Mario walking through the Mushroom Kingdom amid ton of multicolored Toads. It's our longest uncut look at footage of this animated feature yet and it does a great job highlighting Illumination's interpretation of Mario's world. The Super Mario Bros. Movie comes to theaters on April 7. 
Crash Team Rumble announced by Activision
Crash Team Rumble - Official Announcement Trailer | The Game Awards 2022
After two years of leaks and rumors regarding a new Crash Bandicoot multiplayer game, Activision finally revealed Crash Team Rumble at The Game Awards. Crash Bandicoot literally crashed the show to unveil the 4v4 multiplayer action game where players must shoot and jump around stages as classic Crash Bandicoot characters. Crash Team Rumble launches in 2023.
Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon coming from FromSoftware
ARMORED CORE VI FIRES OF RUBICON アナウンスメントトレーラー【The Game Awards 2022】
Hot off the heels of Elden Ring, FromSoftware was ready to tease its next game. "Feed the Fire. Let the Last Cinders Burn," the trailer says before it becomes clear that it's a new Armored Core game. We then see a lot of cinematic mech action that looks unlike anything FromSoftware has made in the last decade.  Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon will launch in 2023 for PC, PlayStation 4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S. 
Final Fantasy XVI Revenge trailer gives us our best look at the game yet
Final Fantasy 16 - Revenge Trailer | The Game Awards 2022
Final Fantasy XVI Executive Producer Naoki Yoshida revealed a new Final Fantasy XVI trailer titled Revenge at The Game Awards. This showing gave us a deeper look at the story and themes of revenge that run throughout the whole game. We saw more of the Eikons that players will fight against and some new bits of exploration and combat gameplay. To cap things off, Square Enix confirmed that Final Fantasy XVI would be released for PS5 on June 22, 2023.
Everything else

BioShock creator Ken Levine finally revealed his first title at Ghost Story Games: Judas.
Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon, an isometric action-adventure game, was announced by PlatinumGames and launches on March 17, 2023.
Nintendo showed off a sizzle reel of its announced 2023 games.
Ghostbusters: Rise of the Ghost Lord got a trailer. 
Destiny 2's Lightfall expansion got a new gameplay trailer.
Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League got a new trailer revealing that an evil Batman is in the game, meaning that it will feature the late Kevin Conroy's final performance. It will be released on May 26, 2023.
Party Animals' trailer showed off its various playable animals, the outfits they can wear, and the stages they fight on. 
The Last of Us Part 1 comes to PC on March 3, 2023.
Celeste follow-up Earthblade was announced and launches in 2024.
Dune Awakening got an in-engine trailer.
Forspoken is getting a demo on PS5.
Genshin Impact got a trailer teasing an upcoming character.
Ascendant Studios and EA Original revealed Immortals of Aveum.
Tekken 8 got a new trailer revealing lots of new fighters.
Nightingale got a new trailer.
An Xbox Game Pass trailer highlighted games available on the subscription service, as well as ones coming in 2023.
Colossal Cave's full 3D reimagining from Sierra Online founders Ken and Roberta Williams will be released on January 19, 2023.
Baldur's Gate 3 will finally leave early access and release in August 2023.
Airship Syndicate and Digital Extremes announced a fantasy online action RPG called Wayfinder, which will get a beta next week. 
Fire Emblem: Engage got a new trailer confirming that a DLC starring Three Houses characters and more will launch throughout 2023.
Sky got a trailer highlighting an upcoming in-game concert.
Diablo IV's June 6, 2023, release date was confirmed after a musical performance from Halsey and a new trailer.
Amazon Games will publish Bandai Namco Studios' anime-style MMORPG Blue Protocol for PC and current-gen consoles in 2023.
Remnant II, a sequel to the sleeper hit multiplayer shooter Remnant: From the Ashes, was announced.
Transformers: Reactivate was announced with a cinematic teaser trailer. 
Company of Heroes 3 got a live-action trailer
Meta Quest game Behemoth VR was revealed with a cinematic trailer. 
Don't Nod and Focus Entertainment announced action RPG Banishers: Ghost of a New Eden.
Warhammer 40K: Space Marine II received a new gameplay trailer.
Meet Your Maker's April 4, 2023 release date was confirmed in a cinematic trailer.
A gameplay overview trailer for Blood Bowl III was shown off.
The next-gen update for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt was highlighted in a launch trailer. 
We got a first look at The Lords of the Fallen gameplay.
Epic Games and 505 Games announced Crime Boss: Rockay City, a first-person heist game game starring Michael Madsen and Kim Bassinger, Damion Poitier, Danny Trejo, Danny Glover, Michael Rooker, Vanilla Ice, and Chuck Norris. It will launch on March 28, 2023.
The first raid for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II received its debut trailer.
The Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty expansion got a new trailer that reveals Idris Elba is in the game. 
Rocket League: Frosty Fest begins December 14.
Wild Hearts got a new trailer unveiling some of the giant new Kemono that players will fight.

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It’s time we learn to value all-ages games as much as ‘mature’ ones
Kratos sternly looks at Atreus in God of War: Ragnarok.

In the past few years, I've become the type of girl who looks forward to The Game Awards more than the Academy Awards. This year, however, is a little bit different. As host Geoff Keighley announced this year's nominees, I hoped to see Sonic Frontiers get a bit of recognition. While mixed reviews meant it was unlikely to compete for Game of the Year, it felt like a potential shoo-in for categories like Best Action/Adventure Game. Instead, Sonic's latest didn't earn any nominations, not even for its critically praised soundtrack.

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At first glance, Gungrave G.O.R.E may look like a game out of time. It has the energy of a PlayStation 2 character action game, but its launching on modern consoles including Xbox Series X/S and PS5. The character action game, which revives a long-dormant PlayStation franchise, pays tribute to some of the genre's greats -- stylish hack-and-slash titles like Devil May Cry 3, God Hand, the original God of War titles, and Viewtiful Joe. Like those games, Gungrave G.O.R.E has one simple goal: letting players feel like an over-the-top badass.

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