The Witcher 3 leads off a big week in new gaming releases

twig may 22 2015 witcher04
Lots of anticipated game releases grace stores this week. The Witcher series has steadily grown in popularity and acclaim over the previous two entries, and the new, third game might be its breakout hit, and one of the first, defining RPGs of the new console generation. Meanwhile Destiny fans get another generous portion of juicy new content to feast on with the House of Wolves expansion. Life is Strange‘s action heats up with the third of five episodes in this time travel coming-of-age story. To fill the moments between bigger games, 3DS now has a spinoff of the popular Puzzles & Dragons match-3 series, with a special Mario twist.

What will you be playing this week?

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

PS4/Xbox One/Windows (May 19)
Return to the saga of Geralt of Rivia, a mutated, professional monster hunter whom everyone needs, but no one really wants to stick around (except for sexy sorceresses, of course). Adapted from a series of fantasy novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski, this is developer CD Projekt Red’s largest entry in the series yet.

Ciri, an immensely powerful young woman and one-time protege of Geralt, is on the run from a pack of relentless, spectral knights called the Wild Hunt, and Geralt is tasked with finding her before they do. Track her in a massive world with sprawling vistas full of secrets to discover and complicated ethical decisions to make.

Life is Strange: Episode 3 — Chaos Theory

PS3/PS4/Xbox 360/Xbox One, Windows (May 19)
The time travel and teen angst adventures of Max Caulfield continue in this third of five episodes for Dontnod and Square Enix’s episodic, narrative-driven adventure. Not everything is as placid as it seems in Arcadia Bay when Max Caulfield returns home. Her newly manifest ability to rewind time and change events allows Max to dig deeper into the web of secrets around the disappearance of a fellow student.

Episode 3 sees Max and Chloe getting closer to learning what happened to Rachel Amber, going so far as to break into Principal Wells’ office at night. Max will also apparently find a new use for her ability.

Destiny: House of Wolves

PS3/PS4/Xbox 360/Xbox One (May 19)
The Queen of the Awoken has been betrayed by the Fallen. She has sent a call out for Guardians to come out to her realm in the Reef at the edge of the solar system, with a promise of great rewards. This is the second major expansion for Bungie’s massive online shooter, Destiny.

Although there is no new raid this time around, House of Wolves does add substantial new endgame content, such as a wave-based cooperative challenge at the Prison of Elders, or a new, high-level competition for the best of the best, the Trials of Osiris. It also adds a host of new weapons, armor, and missions, and reworks a number of the game’s systems.

Puzzles & Dragons Z/Super Mario Edition

3DS (May 22)
This Japanese mobile match-3 puzzler with elements of a roleplaying game has come to Nintendo’s handheld 3DS, and includes two fully featured games in one. Puzzles & Dragons Z adds even more RPG elements to the addictive, match puzzling gameplay, with towns to explore and NPCs to talk with. Puzzles & Dragons Super Mario Edition takes those same basic mechanics, but translates them into the world and characters of Mario, but with fewer RPG elements, instead using a traditional Mario level progression.

Players assemble a team of characters to fight opponents. Matching like-colored gems triggers characters of the corresponding element to attack, with more gems and combos leading to more damage. The characters level up and grow more powerful through experience, and teams can be swapped in and out in order to best deal with the challenges of a particular level.

Product Review

'New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe' is 2D platforming wizardry

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe is the latest Wii U game to come back from the dead on Switch. And wow, it’s much better than we remembered.
Gaming

Find all of the secret exits and world skips in 'New Super Luigi U Deluxe'

Just like all other 2D Mario games, New Super Mario Bros. Deluxe includes secret exits and world skips. In this guide, we'll show you how to get to all 12 secret exits in New Super Luigi U.
Gaming

Find all of the secret exits and world skips in 'New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe'

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe has two distinct Mario experiences in one package. In this guide, we'll show you how to find all of the secret exits in New Super Mario Bros. U, that lead to hidden levels and let you skip worlds.
Movies & TV

From premiere date to footage: Here's all we have on 'Game of Thrones' season 8

With the eighth and final season looming, Game of Thrones fever has officially become a pandemic. Our list of all the relevant news and rumors will help make the wait more bearable, if you don't mind spoilers.
Computing

You could be gaming on AMD’s Navi graphics card before the end of the summer

If you're waiting for a new graphics card from AMD that doesn't cost $700, you may have to wait for Navi. But that card may not be far away, with new rumors suggesting we could see a July launch.
Gaming

Sharing your best gameplay moments is quick and easy on the Xbox One

The current generation of consoles make it easier than ever to share your gaming highlights with the world. Here's a quick guide on how you can record a gameplay video on Xbox One.
Gaming

Blizzard’s latest hiring spree is likely for the unannounced ‘Diablo 4’

Activision Blizzard is hiring for more than a dozen positions on unannounced Diablo projects. Some of the roles are likely for the unannounced Diablo 4, the next mainline entry in the series.
Gaming

Everything we know about 'Red Dead Online', including the new mode Gun Rush

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.
Gaming

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.
Gaming

Fortnite V-Bucks being used by criminals for money laundering on dark web

Criminals are using Fortnite's V-Bucks for money laundering schemes on the dark web. Epic Games, apparently, is not doing enough to prevent the game from being used for the illegal activity.
Gaming

Relive the 8-bit gaming era with the best NES emulators for Android and PC

For years prior to the release of the NES Classic, emulators have offered a means to every NES game ever created without needing the console. Here are the best NES emulators for Android and PC.
Gaming

Mortal Kombat 11 Kollector’s Edition comes with a life-size Scorpion mask

The Mortal Kombat 11 Kollector's Edition will come with a human-sized replica of the mask of Scorpion, one of the most iconic fighters of the series. NetherRealm Studios has also announced the game's preorder bonuses.
Gaming

Xbox app lets you access your console while away from home. Here's how

Microsoft's Xbox allows you to access your profile information and launch media content directly from your mobile device. Check out our quick guide on how to connect your smartphone to an Xbox One.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: camera with A.I. director, robot arm assistant

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!