Christmas is less than a week away, which means, friends, that this is the final Week in Gaming you’ll read/endure in 2014 – please weep/rejoice as appropriate.
There was probably a moment many years ago, around the time you first saw Back to the Future Part II, that you imagined what 2015 might look like. It was the year Marty McFly famously stepped on the hoverboard, and maybe you hoped we’d all be playing games with our minds and eating pills instead of meals.
Now take a look out the window. Disappointing, isn’t it? Ours cars can’t even fly.
Alas, you’ll have to keep fantasising for now, but to help keep the faith alive I’ll kick off this week’s gaming frenzy with some rather rad news: Xbox virtual reality is happening.
TechRadar has been informed by multiple sources that dev kits for Microsoft’s VR headset are already in the hands of some developers. That alone is exciting enough, but the HMD is also looking hopeful for a E3 2015 arrival.
We’re unable to confirm exactly what the headset will look like, but there have been suggestions that it may blend virtual reality and augmented reality to give it a unique edge over Sony’s Project Morpheus.
Actually, we say that’s the most exciting news of the week but we did also get Hearthstone on our Android tablets. It’s no coincidence that productivity levels have been dropping ever since – good thing we can blame Christmas spirit or some other nonsense.
You know that feeling when you see someone wearing an ugly Christmas jumper unironically, and all you can think is ‘I want to run you down with my Landstalker’? Well get grandma round because GTA 5 is making that dream come true this Christmas thanks to some festive DLC.
Rockstar has dropped a huge crate of goodies for GTA 5 players, including a new homing missile and proximity mines "to make spirits bright", some pyjamas and "ugly" jumpers, new masks, and the promise of some holiday crate drops that’ll be stuffed with Christmas cheer. Cheer meaning "probably explosives".
But our favourite stocking filler from Rockstar is the promise of occasional snowfall in Los Santos, during which you’ll be able to partake in snowball fights with your friends. "But be forewarned," says Rockstar, "those icy little suckers can pack a wallop." See kids, who needs real Christmas when you can live in your Xbox and pummel each other to death with snowballs there instead? Marvel at how lifelike the blood looks at it seeps into the snow.
Our strangest story of the week goes to Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Nintendo’s shot at giving the animated mushroom its own spinoff. After a year of countless release delays from a multitude of publishers, Nintendo did the unthinkable: it actually brought the launch forward by two weeks.
Oddly enough, that night I dreamt I was navigating my way through one of the levels as Toad and his mushroom friends chased me, pick axes in their hands and a homicidal look in their eyes. This game is already giving me nightmares. I must buy it.
So long, old friend
But unfortunately all of this has been overshadowed by some extremely sad news. This week it was announced that our fellow CVG will be closing its doors. Some of the content will be migrated over to GamesRadar but currently none of the existing staff will stay, which means it truly is the end of an era.
As the world’s oldest video game brand, CVG has witnessed (and in many ways helped) a niche industry unfurl into something massive and mainstream, perhaps against the odds. So we doff our hats to this brilliant publication, and all the laughs and brilliant content you’ve given us over the years. If you’ve even so much as glanced at CVG during its time, these messages from the editors reflecting on 33 years of brilliance are well worth a read.