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The Magic of Christmas: Why Darkside Loves a Good Christmas Case

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Clever puzzles, witty dialogue, satirical stories and the heartfelt relationship between a cop and his partner provide the foundations of a good Darkside Detective case and that means we try and do something new and exciting for every new case that comes out. From reverse vampires to ghost gangsters, the Darkside Detective formula many times will be “take something familiar and turn it on its head.” Which is why in the first of our bonus cases for The Darkside Detective: A Fumble in the Dark, we’re returning to make our second ever Christmas Case! Ghosts of Christmas Passed releases December 24 and I thought it might be interesting to dig a little deeper into why we returned to Christmas for this first bonus case.

Which might require digging a little deeper into that Darkside ethos! One of the core conceits of Darkside Detective will always be a certain referential way it tells stories. The Darkside Detective assumes you’ve seen the classics. You understand what a vampire is, what ghostbusters are, the rules behind seeing ghosts and how gremlins work. We do plenty of worldbuilding to make sure that Twin Lakes is compelling and unique (oftentimes by taking those concepts and finding stuff to make fun of about them) but every Darkside case is going to riff on the classics. It’s going to assume that you’re familiar with the culture so it can then make fun of the culture. Obviously, Darkside is more than just those things. It’s also the small puzzles that break up the dialogue and put a little game into your detective story. It’s also just the undying friendship between a detective and his affable best friend. But the world of Darkside will always be a world of creatures, contraptions and concoctions that show up in our culture.

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Which is the first answer to the question: Christmas looms large in our culture and makes good fodder for satire. For those who need a refresher, Buy Hard was the Christmas case in the first Darkside Detective game focusing on Santa, Krampus, and the undying war between them. Christmas is a pretty big topic. It covers Santa, elves, andthe north pole, sure, but it also covers “A Christmas Carol” and “Home Alone”. It covers how we celebrate our families just as much as it covers the specifics of gift giving mythos and holiday tradition. And that size lends itself to a little gamedev team like ours looking at it and saying: “I’ve got another great idea for a Christmas case!” Ghosts of Christmas Passed (which is spiritually inspired more by Charles Dickens than any fables about Kris Kringle) in this way covers a lot of new ground and features perhaps the most complex puzzle in the series’ history.

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The second answer is a little more focused: Christmas also gives us a good opportunity to check in on the greater world of The Darkside Detective. While creating new mythos and lore for Darkside is always a big focus for any new case, going back to some of the older locations and meeting up with older characters helps Darkside be more than just a spoof or parody of these sorts of stories. Darkside has its own world, its own continuity and its own characters to callback to and just like the theme of “A Christmas Carol” is for Scrooge to go connect with the people in his life, it’s a good opportunity for us to go connect with some of those minor characters like Wang, Nigel, Norm Bearson, Gary, Gail, Buzz and Patricia Dooley. What does Pier 13 look like in winter? How much does Wang enjoy his cat-and-mouse relationship with McQueen and Dooley? What was Gary and Gail’s meet cute like? All of those are little stories that we can answer when the Christmas case rolls around and is a little more sentimental.

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Plus, if The Darkside Detective is reminiscent of an episodic TV show, it only feels appropriate for there to be a Christmas special each season, just like your favorite sitcoms or sci fi shows will do. If all that bloviating on The Darkside Detective is your style I’d recommend checking out Ghosts of Christmas Passed. If all that bloviating isn’t your style, I’d also recommend checking it out. Everyone should check it out, really. And you can feel free to let us know how you felt about the case in our Discord, on Facebook and Twitter December 24, after you play!

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The Darkside Detective – Series Edition

Akupara Games


6

$22.99

Enjoy the award winning gameThe Darkside Detective and its follow-up sequel The Darkside Detective: A Fumble in the Dark together in one bundle.





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A “Jack-of-All-Trades” Repairman’s Quest to Save a Princess and Bring Peace to an Entire Kingdom

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Video For A “Jack-of-All-Trades” Repairman’s Quest to Save a Princess and Bring Peace to an Entire Kingdom


Jack ‘N’ Hat is a retro inspired 2D platformer featuring Jack, the famous “jack-of-all-trades” repairman on a quest to save princess Riri from Dr. Voo Doom and bring peace to Ririland. But how did this all come to be? Let’s find out.

It all started around late 2017, when game developer Nick Stavridis finished his 9-month military duty and was back home, unemployed and worried about the future…and that’s when Glitchfall came to life.

Glitchfall was a story about a failed game developer who rediscovers his favorite childhood game, gets sucked into it and needs to help the game’s characters fight mysterious glitches that are destroying their world.

It was an ambitious project, and as time went on, Nick realized he wouldn’t have the resources or time to bring the entire game vision to life. A difficult decision had to be made, so in February 2020, Nick decided to postpone it and work on the game that the protagonist from Glitchfall played as a kid – and that was Jack ‘N’ Hat. This is the reason why the game offers only 16 colors and a 4:3 aspect ratio, it is supposed to be a game from an early 90’s console!

dungeon cross section

Designing the levels and bosses and working on the music were Nick’s favorite aspects of the game development. Each boss battle took roughly two weeks to make, and each game level features a unique soundtrack. Every detail was carefully thought-out in order to create the perfect early 90’s game atmosphere.

snowy chasm

Around the end of 2020 the game was finally finished and picked up by 2Awesome Studio as a publisher.

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blue enemy

In the end, we can say Jack ‘N’ Hat is the prequel…that came first! (good thing George Lucas didn’t do the same, though). Pick it up today on Xbox!

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Jack ‘n’ Hat

2Awesome Partners


$7.99

$6.79

The sinister Dr. Voo Doom has kidnapped the Princess of Ririland and incited a civil war! It’s up to repairman extraordinaire, Jack and his boomerang hat to save her and restore peace! Jump through 20+ huge levels, collecting Crystals, Stars and more! Can you save Ririland?

Jack’n’ Hat has stunning 16-bit pixel art, beautiful music and precise controls which is likely to remind you of the greatest old school platformers.

Prepare for an exhilarating platformer adventure across the world of Ririland! The evil Dr. Voo Doom has abducted Princess Riri, instigating a civil war that has plunged the Kingdom into chaos!

Is there anyone strong enough to save the distraught royal? Jack, the famous “”jack-of-all-trades”” repairman is ready to bring peace to the land.

Armed with the latest invention of the brilliant Dr. Expo Zicion, a hat that can be thrown like a boomerang, Jack has to travel the planet searching for Energy Crystals, the only power source that will allow him to travel to the moon and put an end to Dr. Voo Doom’s plans for world domination!

Help Jack jump and slide his way through deserts, jungles, volcanoes and battle devious enemies and dangerous bosses!

Can you save Ririland?

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LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga Unveils Release Date

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Today, we’re excited to share that LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga will release globally on April 5, 2022 for Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. In what will be the biggest and most visually striking LEGO Star Wars game yet, players will relive the epic story of all nine films of the Skywalker Saga like never before with new combat mechanics, a wide range of characters and character classes, a vast galaxy to explore, and much more! From the idyllic grassy hills of Naboo to the desert dunes of Jakku, the LEGO Star Wars galaxy is available to discover and play in, and it all starts with picking the trilogy of your choice to begin the journey.

Play as iconic characters like Luke Skywalker, Rey, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Finn, Leia, Yoda, Boba Fett, Darth Maul, Poe and over three hundred more unlockable characters. Exploration rewards players as they uncover Kyber Bricks which unlock new features and upgraded abilities across a range of character classes, including Jedi, Hero, Dark Side, Villain, Scavenger, Scoundrel, Bounty Hunter, Astromech Droid, and Protocol Droid. New blaster controls and mechanics allow players to aim with precision and take cover to plot their next move or utilize the skills of a Jedi by wielding a lightsaber and using the power of The Force.

Your adventures will not be limited to characters and vehicles as the game will allow you to discover many celebrated locales from your favorite Star Wars films, including the desert of Geonosis, the swamps of Dagobah and the snowfields of Starkiller Base. Players can traverse space using the galaxy map on their holoprojector to chart their course through the saga, progressively unlocking planets to explore along the way.

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During space travel, players may engage in heroic dogfights against enemy ships, piloting legendary vehicles like the Millennium Falcon, Imperial TIE fighters, Rebel X-wings, and many more. Once reaching their destination, players can choose to either continue onwards through the main story or explore and discover exciting quests and puzzles within the galaxy.

LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga

No matter how you choose to play through LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, the game is easy to pick up and play for a younger audience while still offering depth and challenge for anyone to enjoy. Fans of all generations can play together and experience the entire saga retold in new, fun-filled LEGO humor. Pre-order now on the Xbox store.

Be sure to lock your coordinates on to Xbox Wire as well as @LSWGame for the latest and greatest news and updates.

The Force will be with you. Always.

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LEGO® Star Wars™: The Skywalker Saga

Warner Bros. Games


8

$59.99

Pre-order the game and get day one access to the Trooper Pack. The digital edition also includes an exclusive classic Obi-Wan Kenobi playable character.

Play through all nine Star Wars saga films in a brand-new LEGO video game unlike any other. Experience fun-filled adventures, whimsical humor, and the freedom to fully immerse yourself in the LEGO Star Wars galaxy.

Want to play as a Jedi? A Sith? Rebel, bounty hunter, or droid? LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga features hundreds of playable characters from throughout the galaxy. Whether on land or in space, a variety of vehicles are yours to command. Jump to light speed in the Millennium Falcon, fly the T-47 Airspeeder and battle TIE fighters in Resistance X-wings… it’s the ULTIMATE LEGO Star Wars experience.

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LEGO® Star Wars™:The Skywalker Saga Deluxe Edition

Warner Bros. Games


8

$69.99

Pre-order the game and get day one access to the Trooper Character DLC Pack. The digital edition also includes an exclusive classic Obi-Wan Kenobi playable character.

Get the LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga Digital Deluxe Edition and enjoy more of the galaxy far, far away. In addition to the base game, the Deluxe Edition includes seven DLC packs in a Character Collection bundle:
– The Mandalorian Pack 1
– The Mandalorian Pack 2
– Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
– Classic Characters
– Solo: A Star Wars Story
– Star Wars: The Bad Batch
– Trooper Pack – Get day one access to this pack by pre-ordering the game.

With the base game, you can play through all nine Star Wars saga films in a brand-new LEGO video game unlike any other! Experience fun-filled adventures, whimsical humor, and the freedom to fully immerse yourself in the LEGO Star Wars galaxy.

Want to play as a Jedi? A Sith? Rebel, bounty hunter, or droid? LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga features hundreds of playable characters from throughout the galaxy. Whether on land or in space, a variety of vehicles are yours to command. Jump to light speed in the Millennium Falcon, fly the T-47 Airspeeder and battle TIE fighters in Resistance X-wings… it’s the ULTIMATE LEGO Star Wars experience.





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Free Play Days: Yakuza 3 Remastered, Yakuza 4 Remastered, and Yakuza 5 Remastered

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Free Play Days - January 20


Celebrate Kazuma Kiryu’s saga this weekend with Free Play Days! Yakuza 3 Remastered, Yakuza 4 Remastered, and Yakuza 5 Remastered are all available this weekend for Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members to play from Thursday, January 20 at 12:01 a.m. PST until Sunday, January 23 at 11:59 p.m. PST.

How to Start Playing

Find and install the games here on Xbox.com. Clicking through will send you to the Microsoft Store, where you must be signed in to see the option to install with your Xbox Live Gold membership. To download on console, click on the Subscriptions tab in the Xbox Store and enter the Gold member area to locate the Free Play Days collection on your Xbox One.

Keep the Fun Going

Purchase the game and other editions at a limited time discount and continue playing while keeping your Gamerscore and earned achievements during the event! Please note that discount percentage may vary by region.

Game Details

  • Yakuza 3 Remastered
  • Yakuza 4 Remastered
  • Yakuza 5 Remastered

Yakuza 3 Remastered
His heart at peace, Kazuma Kiryu leaves his yakuza life behind to settle into running an orphanage on the breezy and idyllic Okinawan coast. But when the land that it is on becomes a dispute between politicians, the local gangs, and the Tojo Clan, Kiryu’s past rears its ugly head, and he will have to choose a side.

Yakuza 4 Remastered
In the absence of the Dragon of Dojima, Kamurocho becomes a jungle without a king, and a power struggle brewing behind the scenes since an infamous hit job in 1984 boils to the surface. Witness events through the eyes of Shun Akiyama, a loan shark known as the “Lifeline of Kamurocho,” Taiga Saejima, who must escape from prison to confront his past, Masayoshi Tanimura, a cop on the wrong side of the law, and Kazuma Kiryu, who finds himself embroiled in the events that shaped his present-day life.

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Yakuza 5 Remastered
The Omi Alliance is on the verge of a war of succession, and to prevent it Sixth Chairman of the Tojo Clan, Daigo Dojima, seeks to unify the yakuza from around Japan. The echoes of this underground power struggle reach five playable characters: Kazuma Kiryu, who is laying low in Fukuoka as a taxi driver, Taiga Saejima, who returns to prison to finish what he started, Shun Akiyama, who lends money to a client that is more than meets the eye, Haruka Sawamura, who dreams of becoming an idol, and Tatsuo Shinada, a disgraced baseball star who finds himself in over his head. Five characters, five cities, and five dreams converge in an explosive conclusion.

Don’t miss out on this exciting Free Play Days for Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members! Learn more about Free Play Days here and stay tuned to Xbox Wire to find out about future Free Play Days and all the latest Xbox gaming news.





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