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How Star Trek Online rebuilds the Klingon Empire

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Star Trek Online is in the midst of their Year of Klingon, and their newest story update, House Reborn, is about to launch on Playstation 4. On March 2, you can experience a brand new story starring the biggest collection of Klingon actors they’ve ever had – Mary Chieffo as L’Rell, J.G. Hertzler as Martok, Robert O’Reilly as Gowron, and Sam Witwer stepping into Kenneth Mitchell’s shoes as Tenavik. The Klingon Empire is shattered, in the midst of a civil war caused by the mad Emperor J’mpok. You must journey to Grethor, the Klingon version of Hell, to battle for the lost soul of the first Klingon Chancellor, L’Rell, mother of Klingons.

This is the perfect time to jump into Star Trek Online as an honorable Klingon warrior. The Year of Klingon officially kicked off with Season 20 – House Divided, last September. The entire Klingon starting experience has been rebuilt from the ground up, with high fidelity visuals, streamlined mission design, and new voice acting. If you start playing now, you’ll also become a Klingon Recruit, which gives you access to new rewards as you level your character.

To find out more about the process of updating the Klingon experience, we spoke with Senior Content Designer Jessie Heinig. Jesse’s been with Star Trek Online for ten of its eleven years, so he’s also got a unique perspective on updating the story, since he built some of it himself.

How did you get involved with the process of reimagining the Klingon starting experience?

We decided, “Okay, we’re going to do an entire year of Klingon, and that means we’re going to make some Klingon ships. We’re going to make new Klingon character art. We’re going to rebuild entire levels of Klingons and make Klingon-themed missions that everyone gets to play.  Okay, since we’re redoing a lot of this Klingon stuff, we can go back and also redo our earlier Klingon stuff and include these updated characters and new voice work and new ships and so on.”

And I was tapped specifically for remastering and re-imagining all of the early Klingon content and bringing it up to new standards, which was a lot of fun. And it’s really, really amazing to see people get to make new Klingon Recruits and play through this, often for the first time. We encourage people, “No, go and play a Klingon. Now is the time. Today is a good day to play.”

You worked on a lot of these missions when they originally launched. How has your design philosophy changed now almost a decade later?

So, the market itself

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 + 2 – coming to PS5 on March 26

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Spin, flip, grind, and ollie through the greatest levels in skateboarding history as Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 arrives on the PlayStation 5 starting March 26. Using next-gen enhancements to push the game’s audio and visuals to the limit, this is skating at its finest.

The O.G. birdman is back and looking his best on PS5

Pick your favorite pro skater — or create your own — and get ready to carve up the greatest skateboarding levels in history in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2. 

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 brings back all the classic levels, pro skaters, and old-school tricks from the original game, plus new skaters, the robust Create-A-Park and Create-A-Skater editing tools, an iconic soundtrack featuring 37 new tracks, and much more.

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 + 2 – coming to PS5 on March 26

Conquer each skate park in Tours, the reimagined Career mode, or shred in other single player modes like Single Session and Free Skate. Test your skills against other skaters in Multiplayer, featuring a new competitive online system with curated playlists and ranked leaderboards.

And it’s about to look and sound sharper than ever as it arrives on the PlayStation 5.

Skate confidently with gnarly next-gen upgrades

Skate in super crisp 120 FPS at 1080P or 60 FPS in native 4K. Watch the levels come to life using sharper dynamic shadows, reflections, and lens flare, plus enhanced skater textures.

The PS5 enhancements don’t stop at audio and visual upgrades, either. Major features include:

  • 120 FPS @1080p
  • Native 4k @60FPS
  • SSD & Immediacy
  • Haptic feedback via the DualSense wireless controller
  • Spatialized Audio
  • High Fidelity Atmospherics
  • Activities and Game Help
  • Cross-Gen Progression

This is Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 in its fastest, sharpest, and most feature-rich iteration to-date.

Introducing the next generation of VR on PlayStation

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More than four years ago, we launched PlayStation VR to offer a transformative new way to play games on PS4, providing a much stronger sense of presence and deeper immersion to players compared with traditional games. In that time, we’ve seen tremendous experiences that have propelled virtual reality gaming forward, including highly acclaimed titles like Astro Bot: Rescue Mission, Tetris Effect, Blood & Truth, Moss, Beat Saber, and Resident Evil 7 biohazard. We’ve also enhanced the experience for some PS VR titles when played on PS4 Pro and PlayStation 5.

Today I’m pleased to share that our next-generation VR system will be coming to PlayStation 5, enabling the ultimate entertainment experience with dramatic leaps in performance and interactivity. Players will feel an even greater sense of presence and become even more immersed in their game worlds once they put on the new headset.

We’re continuing to innovate with our new VR system so that our fans can continue to enjoy the unique experiences that are synonymous with PlayStation. We’re taking what we’ve learned since launching PS VR on PS4 to develop a next-gen VR system that enhances everything from resolution and field of view to tracking and input. It will connect to PS5 with a single cord to simplify setup and improve ease-of-use, while enabling a high-fidelity visual experience. 

One of the innovations we’re excited about is our new VR controller, which will incorporate some of the key features found in the DualSense wireless controller, along with a focus on great ergonomics. That’s just one of the examples of future-proof technology we’re developing to match our vision for a whole new generation of VR games and experiences. 

There’s still a lot of development underway for our new VR system, so it won’t be launching in 2021. But we wanted to provide this early update to our fans, as the development community has started to work on creating new worlds for you to explore in virtual reality. 

We also want to thank all of our PS VR players for your continued support — with upcoming games like After The Fall, Sniper Elite VR, and Humanity, there’s much more to come for PS VR whether you’re playing on PS4 or PS5. With both PlayStation VR and the next-generation VR system we’re building, our commitment to virtual reality as a medium for games is stronger than ever. We look forward to sharing more details in the future!

Play At Home returns: Four months of offers for PlayStation games and entertainment begin March 1

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Hello again! The past 12 months haven’t been easy. And I think we’re all hopeful that we may be starting to see some flickers of light at the end of this long COVID-19 tunnel thanks to the tireless work of the medical community and people around the world.

In these historic times, the team at PlayStation wanted to thank the community by giving something back. These days, we could all use something to look forward to and another reason to stay safely socially distanced, so we are happy to be able to offer a free selection of great games and some entertainment offers.

Last April, we launched the Play At Home initiative, offering up two incredible PlayStation games for free: Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection and Journey*. I like to think they helped make the year just a little bit easier.

This year, we wanted to go further. So we’ve designed a series of free games and entertainment offers for our PlayStation community to make the next few months a little more fun and enjoyable.

This year’s Play at Home initiative is kicking off in March and extending through June. 

Starting March 1, 2021

  • PlayStation and Insomniac Games will make Ratchet & Clank PS4 available for free download for a limited time through PlayStation Store from March 1 at 8pm PST / March 2 at 4am GMT / 5am CET to March 31, 2021 at 8pm PDT* / April 1 at 4am BST / 5am CEST.
  • Once you redeem the game, it will be yours to keep. This 2016 PS4 action-adventure hit from Insomniac Games revisits the origin stories of these beloved PlayStation heroes and features a great mix of outrageous combat and comedy.

Starting March 25, 2021

  • Our friends at Funimation (a joint venture of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Aniplex of Japan) are kicking in a very special offer: extended access for new subscribers to Funimation or Wakanim in the countries they are available **. Funimation is an anime-focused subscription service and Wakanim is  Funimation’s European division. While there will be additional details to follow, this offer is only available to our community who sign up for and download the Funimation (in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand) or Wakanim apps (in most of Western and Northern Europe) starting on March 25 for a limited time. 

What we outlined today is just the beginning of what’s in store for Play At Home. In the coming weeks, we’ll share more details on free games and entertainment offers dropping for our PlayStation community. 

I think we’ve got a great mix of games and entertainment offers lined up, and I hope this news made your day just a little bit brighter. We consider ourselves privileged to bring you this entertainment, and we are very grateful to be a part of your lives.

Thanks for playing.

*Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection was provided to PlayStation users in regions except Germany and China. Users in Germany and China received free access to Knack 2. 

** FUNIMATION and WAKANIM – On top of the standard 14-day  trial, new users can get an additional 90 days . Unless you cancel your subscription before the end of the  period, your subscription will automatically roll into a paid-for, ongoing subscription with a recurring monthly fee. Age restrictions apply. More information to follow. 

Vehicular combat battler Heavy Metal Machines launches on PS4 and PS5 tomorrow

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Hello everyone! Hoplon Studio here, from Brazil, and we’re thrilled to announce that Heavy Metal Machines is arriving on PS4 (and playable on PS5) February 23.

Vehicular combat battler Heavy Metal Machines launches on PS4 and PS5 tomorrow

Heavy Metal Machines is a one-of-a-kind, free-to-play multiplayer vehicular combat game where players engage in 4v4 intense battles, controlling lethal vehicles in post-apocalyptic arenas, and I’m pretty sure you’ll love it.

Heavy Metal Machine’s combination of unique vehicles, fast-paced combat, and post-apocalyptic sports arenas will take you to a whole new gameplay experience where two teams of four players fight to pick up a bomb and take it to the enemy base. Deliver the bomb 3 times to be the winner.

Match your best skills with a role

Ranging from a car-crushing Monster Truck, heavily armored Tank, blade-throwing Motorcycle, to a magnetic Tow Truck, each of the many vehicles has a different set of weapons and gameplay styles that bring a wide range of strategic possibilities to each match.

Play as an Interceptor, to chase and destroy enemies, as Support to keep your allies safe, or as a Transporter to take and deliver the bomb to the enemy base.

Become a metal gladiator

You can play Heavy Metal Machines casually, or if you want to spice things up, join the Ranked Mode and aspire to become godlike. You can also create your Team and bring it to the Colosseum, an in-game Tournament, to battle for prizes and prestige.

Golden tips

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