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GAMES

Pocket Snooker 19 on Xbox One Today

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/Snooker-19-005-1.jpg

Snooker 19 is now available on Xbox One, marking the start of a new era for fans after almost a decade without an officially licensed snooker game. — we’re incredibly excited to share the official World Snooker videogame with players across the world. Jump in now, just in time for the start of the Betfred World Championships, and you’ll be able to play along in real-time online for the duration of the tournament.

As you can see in the new Snooker 19 trailer, the teams here at Ripstone and Lab42 have been working extremely hard alongside World Snooker to bring the game to life with incredible detail, featuring all the players and all the drama of the pro tour and a wide array of game modes for online and offline play.

Snooker 19Snooker 19

Over and above all of that though, we believe that the most important factor in bringing to life an authentic snooker game lies within the gameplay itself. This is why we’ve engineered an extremely sophisticated physics engine, built from the ground up for snooker, to ensure that we capture every little detail of the sport to create the ultimate true-to-life simulation.

It turns out that the best way to test the physics of a snooker game is to put it in the hands of professional players, so we went ahead and did just that throughout the course of development. Top ranked players Kyren Wilson and Shaun Murphy both spent time with us in the studio for the ultimate test of our physics simulation and AI difficulty. They were both impressed by the level of control and the precision captured within the game and just how close it is to the real thing.

Snooker 19Snooker 19

Applying spin realistically impacts the way balls rebound from the cushion, and to ensure perfect positioning to build a big break you’ll need to carefully control your shot pace and power, just like the pros do. AI opponents play just like they do in the real world, with their strengths and weaknesses in the game directly reflecting their actual play style, meaning that going up against Ronnie O’Sullivan in Snooker 19 will feel like it would if you got to play against him in real life. To make things a little fairer, we’ve added a selection of aiming aids to level the playing field and provide both amateur players and pro players with a selection of tools to help improve their skills.

The launch of the game today is just the start for Snooker 19 and we’re looking forward to supporting the game and the community throughout the 2019/20 World Snooker season. We hope to see you online in one of the many upcoming live tournaments and you can stay in touch with us over on Twitter at @snooker19game.

Snooker 19 is available now on Xbox One via the Microsoft Store. Click here for purchase details.

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Next Week on Xbox: New Games for April 23 to 26
Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later
Grip Gets Updated with Four New Tracks and One New Team Mode

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/snooker-19-xbox-one-today/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Pocket Snooker 19 on Xbox One Today

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/Snooker-19-005-1.jpg

Snooker 19 is now available on Xbox One, marking the start of a new era for fans after almost a decade without an officially licensed snooker game. — we’re incredibly excited to share the official World Snooker videogame with players across the world. Jump in now, just in time for the start of the Betfred World Championships, and you’ll be able to play along in real-time online for the duration of the tournament.

As you can see in the new Snooker 19 trailer, the teams here at Ripstone and Lab42 have been working extremely hard alongside World Snooker to bring the game to life with incredible detail, featuring all the players and all the drama of the pro tour and a wide array of game modes for online and offline play.

Snooker 19Snooker 19

Over and above all of that though, we believe that the most important factor in bringing to life an authentic snooker game lies within the gameplay itself. This is why we’ve engineered an extremely sophisticated physics engine, built from the ground up for snooker, to ensure that we capture every little detail of the sport to create the ultimate true-to-life simulation.

It turns out that the best way to test the physics of a snooker game is to put it in the hands of professional players, so we went ahead and did just that throughout the course of development. Top ranked players Kyren Wilson and Shaun Murphy both spent time with us in the studio for the ultimate test of our physics simulation and AI difficulty. They were both impressed by the level of control and the precision captured within the game and just how close it is to the real thing.

Snooker 19Snooker 19

Applying spin realistically impacts the way balls rebound from the cushion, and to ensure perfect positioning to build a big break you’ll need to carefully control your shot pace and power, just like the pros do. AI opponents play just like they do in the real world, with their strengths and weaknesses in the game directly reflecting their actual play style, meaning that going up against Ronnie O’Sullivan in Snooker 19 will feel like it would if you got to play against him in real life. To make things a little fairer, we’ve added a selection of aiming aids to level the playing field and provide both amateur players and pro players with a selection of tools to help improve their skills.

The launch of the game today is just the start for Snooker 19 and we’re looking forward to supporting the game and the community throughout the 2019/20 World Snooker season. We hope to see you online in one of the many upcoming live tournaments and you can stay in touch with us over on Twitter at @snooker19game.

Snooker 19 is available now on Xbox One via the Microsoft Store. Click here for purchase details.

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Next Week on Xbox: New Games for April 23 to 26
Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later
Grip Gets Updated with Four New Tracks and One New Team Mode

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/snooker-19-xbox-one-today/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Rock Band 4 Rivals New Season Turns It up to 11

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/RB4-season11-trackskins.gif

We’ve just started up a new season for Rock Band 4 Rivals players, making this an opportune time to join a crew and get in on the action. As if that wasn’t enough, for this first week of the season, we’ll be featuring free access to all of the features in the Rivals upgrade, including Rivals mode, the Rockudrama campaign, and the 40+ songs that come with Rivals. So, get in there and check it out.

Rivals Mode – Where the Action is

Rivals is the team-based, competitive online mode that serves as the backbone for the Rock Band 4 Rivals experience. For a quick refresher on how Rivals works, check out this Xbox Wire article from last September.

Participants in Season 11 will feature exclusive rewards, like a collection of track skins that you can use to customize your note highway. This is a relatively new feature in Rock Band 4 and a fun bit of customization that was loudly requested by the Rock Band community.

Rock Band 4 Rivals - Season 11Rock Band 4 Rivals - Season 11

Check it out – for Free

As mentioned above, we’re hosting a free trial of Rivals mode for the first week of Season 11. For those of you who play Rock Band 4 casually, we urge you to pop in and check it out. There’s a lot of really fun stuff in there! You can play for free with Rock Band 4 from today through to April 24.

Stay Connected

Lastly, Rivals players should check out the updated companion app. It’s a must-have for any Rivals player — it is completely free and links to your Xbox Gamertag to show account gameplay information. You can view weekly challenge data, see your activity feed, manage/moderate crews, and even engage in app-only features such as crew chat. Also, we will be in contact with app users about the ways we can improve the Rock Band 4 Rivals experience moving forward, so be sure to make your voice heard!

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Play Apex Legends, a Free-to-Play Battle Royale from the Makers of Titanfall 2
Free Play Days for All is Here
Rock Band DLC Bundles Now Available on Xbox One

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/rock-band-4-rivals-new-season/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Rock Band 4 Rivals New Season Turns It up to 11

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/RB4-season11-trackskins.gif

We’ve just started up a new season for Rock Band 4 Rivals players, making this an opportune time to join a crew and get in on the action. As if that wasn’t enough, for this first week of the season, we’ll be featuring free access to all of the features in the Rivals upgrade, including Rivals mode, the Rockudrama campaign, and the 40+ songs that come with Rivals. So, get in there and check it out.

Rivals Mode – Where the Action is

Rivals is the team-based, competitive online mode that serves as the backbone for the Rock Band 4 Rivals experience. For a quick refresher on how Rivals works, check out this Xbox Wire article from last September.

Participants in Season 11 will feature exclusive rewards, like a collection of track skins that you can use to customize your note highway. This is a relatively new feature in Rock Band 4 and a fun bit of customization that was loudly requested by the Rock Band community.

Rock Band 4 Rivals - Season 11Rock Band 4 Rivals - Season 11

Check it out – for Free

As mentioned above, we’re hosting a free trial of Rivals mode for the first week of Season 11. For those of you who play Rock Band 4 casually, we urge you to pop in and check it out. There’s a lot of really fun stuff in there! You can play for free with Rock Band 4 from today through to April 24.

Stay Connected

Lastly, Rivals players should check out the updated companion app. It’s a must-have for any Rivals player — it is completely free and links to your Xbox Gamertag to show account gameplay information. You can view weekly challenge data, see your activity feed, manage/moderate crews, and even engage in app-only features such as crew chat. Also, we will be in contact with app users about the ways we can improve the Rock Band 4 Rivals experience moving forward, so be sure to make your voice heard!

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Play Apex Legends, a Free-to-Play Battle Royale from the Makers of Titanfall 2
Free Play Days for All is Here
Rock Band DLC Bundles Now Available on Xbox One

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/rock-band-4-rivals-new-season/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

April 19th: New Preview Alpha 1905 Update (1910.190416-1940)

http://ifttt.com/images/no_image_card.png

Starting at 2:00 p.m. PST today, members of the Xbox One Preview Alpha Ring will begin receiving the latest 1905 Xbox One system update (19H1_RELEASE_XBOX_DEV_1905\18362.3030.190416-1940) Read on for more about the new features, fixes and known issues in the latest 1905 system update.

 

DETAILS:

  • OS version released: 19H1_RELEASE_XBOX_DEV_1905\18362.3030.190416-1940
  • Available: 2:00PM PDT 4/19/19
  • Mandatory Date/Time: 3:00 AM PDT 4/20/19

 

New Features:

 

Better Sorting in My Games & apps

Our team has made it even easier to find what you’re looking for in any Games & apps. From now on,  articles such as “a,” “an” and “the” will no longer be used to sort titles when using the “Sort A-Z” and “Group by letter” views; for example, “The Witcher” will now be found under “W” instead of “T.” Thanks so much to our Xbox community for helping prioritize this change by voting in our recent “My Games & apps” Idea Drive, and don’t forget to check the Xbox Idea Hub for other topics to which you can contribute!

 

Fixes:

 

Audio

  • Fixes to background audio (BGM) to ensure that BGM and game audio sound fine mixed together with no audio snap/crackle or pop!
  • Fixes to address situations in which the User is not using Spatial sound (Headset format is set to Stereo uncompressed and Bitstream format is not Dolby Atmos).

My Games and Apps

  • Fixes to the sorting in My Games and Apps.

System

  • Localization fixes

 

Known Issues:

 

Audio

  • Headsets are not being assigned to the users profiles.
  • Some users are experiencing no audio with headsets and we are investigating
  • Some users are encountering no audio on their Xbox console after boot (no shell audio, no game audio, no app audio), then have CSS ask them to perform the following steps:
  1. Cold reboot the console

OR

  1. Go to Audio settings on console
  2. Change their HDMI audio settings to the highest supported uncompressed channel count for their equipment
  3. Switch back to the desired format
  4. Audio should be restored

Profile Color

  • Sometimes users may encounter the incorrect Profile color when powering on the console.

 

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
April 19th : New Preview Alpha Skip Ahead 1910 Update (1910.190416-1920)
April 17th: New Preview Alpha 1905 Update (1910.190414-1915)
April 17th : New Preview Alpha Skip Ahead 1910 Update (1910.190414-1920)

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/april-19th-new-preview-alpha-1905-update-1910-190416-1940/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

April 19th : New Preview Alpha Skip Ahead 1910 Update (1910.190416-1920)

http://ifttt.com/images/no_image_card.png

Starting at 2:00 p.m. PST today, members of the Xbox One Preview Alpha Skip Ahead Ring will begin receiving the latest 1910 Xbox One system update (19H1_RELEASE_XBOX_DEV_19H2HOLD_1910\18362.7058.190416-1920). This build has the same features and fixes as 1905 however we need valuable core recovery coverage and feedback as we skip ahead.

 

DETAILS:

  • OS version released: 19H1_RELEASE_XBOX_DEV_19H2HOLD_1910\18362.7058.190416-1920
  • Available: 2:00PM PST 4/19/19
  • Mandatory Date/Time: 3:00 AM PST 4/20/19

 

New Features:

 

Better Sorting in My Games & apps

Our team has made it even easier to find what you’re looking for in any Games & apps. From now on,  articles such as “a,” “an” and “the” will no longer be used to sort titles when using the “Sort A-Z” and “Group by letter” views; for example, “The Witcher” will now be found under “W” instead of “T.” Thanks so much to our Xbox community for helping prioritize this change by voting in our recent “My Games & apps” Idea Drive, and don’t forget to check the Xbox Idea Hub for other topics to which you can contribute!

 

Fixes:

 

Audio

  • Fixes to background audio (BGM) to ensure that BGM and game audio sound fine mixed together with no audio snap/crackle or pop!
  • Fixes to address situations in which the User is not using Spatial sound (Headset format is set to Stereo uncompressed and Bitstream format is not Dolby Atmos).
  • Fixes to address no console audio after system update for some users.
  • Fixes to the stability of spatial audio on system startup and shutdown.

My Games and Apps

  • Fixes to the sorting in My Games and Apps.
  • Games will now correctly show what DLC is installed under managed game as opposed to showing all installed!

System

  • Localization fixes

 

Known Issues:

 

Audio

  • Headsets are not being assigned to the users profiles.
  • Some users are experiencing no audio with headsets and we are investigating
  • Some users are encountering no audio on their Xbox console after boot (no shell audio, no game audio, no app audio), then have CSS ask them to perform the following steps:
  1. Cold reboot the console

OR

  1. Go to Audio settings on console
  2. Change their HDMI audio settings to the highest supported uncompressed channel count for their equipment
  3. Switch back to the desired format
  4. Audio should be restored

Profile Color

  • Sometimes users may encounter the incorrect Profile color when powering on the console.

 

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
April 17th: New Preview Alpha 1905 Update (1910.190414-1915)
April 17th : New Preview Alpha Skip Ahead 1910 Update (1910.190414-1920)
April 15th : New Preview Alpha Ring 1905 Update (1905.190412-1505)

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/april-19th-new-preview-alpha-skip-ahead-1910-update-1910-190416-1920/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Next Week on Xbox: New Games for April 23 to 26

http://ifttt.com/images/no_image_card.png

Welcome to Next Week on Xbox, where we cover all the new games coming soon to Xbox One! Every week the team at Xbox aims to deliver quality gaming content for you to enjoy on your favorite gaming console. To find out what’s coming soon to Xbox One, read on below and click on each of the game profiles for pre-order details (dates are subject to change).

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later
Grip Gets Updated with Four New Tracks and One New Team Mode
The Sims 4 Spa Day is Now Available, Plus Mouse and Keyboard Support on Xbox One

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/next-week-on-xbox-new-games-april-23-to-26/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Next Week on Xbox: New Games for April 23 to 26

http://ifttt.com/images/no_image_card.png

Welcome to Next Week on Xbox, where we cover all the new games coming soon to Xbox One! Every week the team at Xbox aims to deliver quality gaming content for you to enjoy on your favorite gaming console. To find out what’s coming soon to Xbox One, read on below and click on each of the game profiles for pre-order details (dates are subject to change).

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later
Grip Gets Updated with Four New Tracks and One New Team Mode
The Sims 4 Spa Day is Now Available, Plus Mouse and Keyboard Support on Xbox One

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/next-week-on-xbox-new-games-april-23-to-26/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/Tooltip2-JP.jpg

Today, Cuphead’s free update is available on Xbox One and features a variety of new features, art, and other changes making Cuphead ready for the adventures ahead – including adding Mugman as a playable character in single-player, complete with his own level completion jingle. One of the more unique things about this update is the massive amount of work Studio MDHR put in to localize Cuphead for a global audience. We caught up with Co-Director at Studio MDHR Chad Moldenhauer to talk about this work, Cuphead’s art and creative direction, and the surprising success of their game a year later.

Xbox Wire: It has been a year since the launch of Cuphead on Xbox One and today its being updated to support a variety of international languages. What made you decide to return to this game and, not only improve it with new animations, but to give it a personal appeal to all these other languages?

Chad Moldenhauer: From the outset, we knew that we always wanted to support Cuphead with a variety of languages, and our intention was actually to ship the game with localization. When we really dug into what would be required to make each translation feel authentic, however, we quickly realized that it was a far bigger task than we had time for in the lead-up to launch.

Given all the love & care we had put into the English version of the game – complete with video game references, animation call backs and lots of character – we felt strongly that all the game’s languages deserved the same level of polish. So ultimately, we made the tough decision not to release with multi-language support, and instead seek out an amazing team of translators who could do each of the game’s 11 new languages justice. We’re really happy with where things ended up!

CupheadCuphead

As for the new visual flourishes, the ability to play as Mugman, and the animated cutscenes, these were stretch goal items from the wish list we had been building internally during development. Like so many developers, we ended up shelving these things as the game go closer to completion, but in our heart of hearts we always knew we’d return to them – the game just didn’t feel complete to us without them!

XW: What was one of those most challenging design elements you encountered in creating this massive update to Cuphead?

Moldenhauer: Many of the biggest design challenges with this update were visual! As we laid out the various translations in-game, it became apparent that each language had varying lengths and sizes for everything from boss titles to NPC dialogue.

Because so much of Cuphead is done by hand, we had to do an extensive pass of each language, going over the game with a fine tooth comb to make sure each lines of text weren’t running over in places like our storybook cutscenes. It was a meticulous process!

In addition, the addition of new animations, new languages, and hand calligraphy offered us the chance to re-evaluate the way were packaging our assets, and make some engineering optimizations so that this update wasn’t slowing the game down. In fact, we were able to greatly improve loading times on Xbox One, which we’re really excited about!

CupheadCuphead

XW: Gamers who played the game since launch have seen the influence of older American cartoon styles establish the unique look of the game and its characters, but with this update the new localized version of the games includes typefaces influenced by Japanese, Korean, and Chinese cartoons. Which cartoons influenced this design for these regions?

Moldenhauer: Interestingly, there was a mixture of references we made to cartoons of the era in these regions as well as physical media like posters, type faces, and even books! We sifted through everything from Hanafadu Card packages to tourism posters of the era as points of reference for our calligraphers. While not our one touchstone, a whimsical Japanese cartoon that does stick out in my mind from our research is Ugokie kori no tatehiki, a whimsical Tom-and-Jerry-style slapstick retelling of the classic “boy who cried wolf” parable from 1930s Japan.

XW: What was it like working with expert calligraphers to help bring the boss and level design lettering to life in way that will meet fan expectations? Could you share details on that process?

Moldenhauer: It was a total joy to work with our two calligraphers, Keisuke Chiba (who did our Korean and Japanese calligraphy) and Shiyuan “Sheera” He (who did the Chinese hand-lettering). Having no experience with the hand-drawing techniques of other languages, it was a real learning experience to see them bring the game’s Asian-language hand lettering to life.

The process was very collaborative, and usually kicked off with us sending over a series of references so that we could find the overall lettering style – one with the right thickness, line weight, personality, and homage to the era. After settling together on a style for each language, we left a lot of the creative decisions up to the calligraphers, while providing input on layout and spacing to keep things looking consistent in-game.

After spending so long during Cuphead’s creation working with master hand-letterer Warren Clark, it was a lot of fun to let these two other amazing artists play in this space!

CupheadCuphead

XW: During your research into creating this update, were there any characters or artistic styles that you discovered for the first time that particularly stuck out to you?

Moldenhauer: I hope it doesn’t sound like a catch-all answer to say that almost everything in the hand-drawing styles of other languages was new to us, because that’s really the case! We were very focused on paying homage to a specific style and era of American animation with Cuphead, so working on calligraphy in languages like Japanese opened our eyes to a whole other facet of art and animation that we’ve come to appreciate.

XW: Beyond the Asian language features being included into Cuphead, you’re also working on French, Italian, German, Russian, and more. Will these language versions see influences from their old cartoon formats in their localized versions too?

Moldenhauer: Something we’re proud of with this translation is the way that the linguists for each language made efforts to go beyond pure “localization” and try to really “culturalize” each translation. Each translator was really picky about taking the English meanings of our titles, phrases, and dialogue and researching to craft an interpretation that made sense and felt on-era for that language – referencing ideas and concepts that would resonate with each audience rather than simply interpret the original translation literally.

It’s also worth mentioning that when creating Cuphead, we really tried to steep ourselves in the 1930s media landscape beyond cartoons, d drawing from posters, films, books, graphic design principles, trading cards, almanacs – you name it!

CupheadCuphead

XW: Do you have a message for the gamers in the countries that you’d like to share now that they get to experience Cuphead in their native language?

Moldenhauer: Nostalgia was something we tried to evoke very strongly with Cuphead – whether for classic arcade-action games of the 80s and 90s, hand-animated 2D cartoons, or vibrant orchestral music. Our hope is that the work we’ve put into these localizations allows more people than ever before to experience this nostalgia.

And for those who may have been waiting until the game was available in their language before jumping in, we can’t thank you enough for your patience as we pushed to get things just right, and hope you have a joyful time adventuring across the Inkwell Isles.

Thank you, Chad for taking the time to talk with us here on Xbox Wire about Cuphead and its newest content update. For all the latest news about Cuphead and more of your favorite Xbox One games, keep it tuned here to Xbox Wire.

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

Related:
Grip Gets Updated with Four New Tracks and One New Team Mode
The Sims 4 Spa Day is Now Available, Plus Mouse and Keyboard Support on Xbox One
Get Ready to Slay in the Second Warhammer: Chaosbane Closed Beta, Live Now on Xbox One

Vía https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2019/04/19/studio-mdhr-interview-cuphead-localization/ ʕ ᴖᴥᴖʔ Subscribe to me here on Youtube! Subscribe-PNG-12sss

GAMES

Talking with Studio MDHR About Localizing Cuphead and Looking Back a Year Later

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/wp-content/uploads/Tooltip2-JP.jpg

Today, Cuphead’s free update is available on Xbox One and features a variety of new features, art, and other changes making Cuphead ready for the adventures ahead – including adding Mugman as a playable character in single-player, complete with his own level completion jingle. One of the more unique things about this update is the massive amount of work Studio MDHR put in to localize Cuphead for a global audience. We caught up with Co-Director at Studio MDHR Chad Moldenhauer to talk about this work, Cuphead’s art and creative direction, and the surprising success of their game a year later.

Xbox Wire: It has been a year since the launch of Cuphead on Xbox One and today its being updated to support a variety of international languages. What made you decide to return to this game and, not only improve it with new animations, but to give it a personal appeal to all these other languages?

Chad Moldenhauer: From the outset, we knew that we always wanted to support Cuphead with a variety of languages, and our intention was actually to ship the game with localization. When we really dug into what would be required to make each translation feel authentic, however, we quickly realized that it was a far bigger task than we had time for in the lead-up to launch.

Given all the love & care we had put into the English version of the game – complete with video game references, animation call backs and lots of character – we felt strongly that all the game’s languages deserved the same level of polish. So ultimately, we made the tough decision not to release with multi-language support, and instead seek out an amazing team of translators who could do each of the game’s 11 new languages justice. We’re really happy with where things ended up!

CupheadCuphead

As for the new visual flourishes, the ability to play as Mugman, and the animated cutscenes, these were stretch goal items from the wish list we had been building internally during development. Like so many developers, we ended up shelving these things as the game go closer to completion, but in our heart of hearts we always knew we’d return to them – the game just didn’t feel complete to us without them!

XW: What was one of those most challenging design elements you encountered in creating this massive update to Cuphead?

Moldenhauer: Many of the biggest design challenges with this update were visual! As we laid out the various translations in-game, it became apparent that each language had varying lengths and sizes for everything from boss titles to NPC dialogue.

Because so much of Cuphead is done by hand, we had to do an extensive pass of each language, going over the game with a fine tooth comb to make sure each lines of text weren’t running over in places like our storybook cutscenes. It was a meticulous process!

In addition, the addition of new animations, new languages, and hand calligraphy offered us the chance to re-evaluate the way were packaging our assets, and make some engineering optimizations so that this update wasn’t slowing the game down. In fact, we were able to greatly improve loading times on Xbox One, which we’re really excited about!

CupheadCuphead

XW: Gamers who played the game since launch have seen the influence of older American cartoon styles establish the unique look of the game and its characters, but with this update the new localized version of the games includes typefaces influenced by Japanese, Korean, and Chinese cartoons. Which cartoons influenced this design for these regions?

Moldenhauer: Interestingly, there was a mixture of references we made to cartoons of the era in these regions as well as physical media like posters, type faces, and even books! We sifted through everything from Hanafadu Card packages to tourism posters of the era as points of reference for our calligraphers. While not our one touchstone, a whimsical Japanese cartoon that does stick out in my mind from our research is Ugokie kori no tatehiki, a whimsical Tom-and-Jerry-style slapstick retelling of the classic “boy who cried wolf” parable from 1930s Japan.

XW: What was it like working with expert calligraphers to help bring the boss and level design lettering to life in way that will meet fan expectations? Could you share details on that process?

Moldenhauer: It was a total joy to work with our two calligraphers, Keisuke Chiba (who did our Korean and Japanese calligraphy) and Shiyuan “Sheera” He (who did the Chinese hand-lettering). Having no experience with the hand-drawing techniques of other languages, it was a real learning experience to see them bring the game’s Asian-language hand lettering to life.

The process was very collaborative, and usually kicked off with us sending over a series of references so that we could find the overall lettering style – one with the right thickness, line weight, personality, and homage to the era. After settling together on a style for each language, we left a lot of the creative decisions up to the calligraphers, while providing input on layout and spacing to keep things looking consistent in-game.

After spending so long during Cuphead’s creation working with master hand-letterer Warren Clark, it was a lot of fun to let these two other amazing artists play in this space!

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XW: During your research into creating this update, were there any characters or artistic styles that you discovered for the first time that particularly stuck out to you?

Moldenhauer: I hope it doesn’t sound like a catch-all answer to say that almost everything in the hand-drawing styles of other languages was new to us, because that’s really the case! We were very focused on paying homage to a specific style and era of American animation with Cuphead, so working on calligraphy in languages like Japanese opened our eyes to a whole other facet of art and animation that we’ve come to appreciate.

XW: Beyond the Asian language features being included into Cuphead, you’re also working on French, Italian, German, Russian, and more. Will these language versions see influences from their old cartoon formats in their localized versions too?

Moldenhauer: Something we’re proud of with this translation is the way that the linguists for each language made efforts to go beyond pure “localization” and try to really “culturalize” each translation. Each translator was really picky about taking the English meanings of our titles, phrases, and dialogue and researching to craft an interpretation that made sense and felt on-era for that language – referencing ideas and concepts that would resonate with each audience rather than simply interpret the original translation literally.

It’s also worth mentioning that when creating Cuphead, we really tried to steep ourselves in the 1930s media landscape beyond cartoons, d drawing from posters, films, books, graphic design principles, trading cards, almanacs – you name it!

CupheadCuphead

XW: Do you have a message for the gamers in the countries that you’d like to share now that they get to experience Cuphead in their native language?

Moldenhauer: Nostalgia was something we tried to evoke very strongly with Cuphead – whether for classic arcade-action games of the 80s and 90s, hand-animated 2D cartoons, or vibrant orchestral music. Our hope is that the work we’ve put into these localizations allows more people than ever before to experience this nostalgia.

And for those who may have been waiting until the game was available in their language before jumping in, we can’t thank you enough for your patience as we pushed to get things just right, and hope you have a joyful time adventuring across the Inkwell Isles.

Thank you, Chad for taking the time to talk with us here on Xbox Wire about Cuphead and its newest content update. For all the latest news about Cuphead and more of your favorite Xbox One games, keep it tuned here to Xbox Wire.

See the rest of the story on Xbox Wire

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