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SYFY WIRE Mortal Kombat 11

Gaming: Unofficial Doom sequel arrives; Apple reveals gaming goodies; more

By Benjamin Bullard
Sigil game based on original 1993 shooter Doom

Old-school Doom fans can finally stop impatiently gnashing their teeth, now that Sigil, the much-awaited spiritual heir and, by general consensus, unofficial fifth installment for the iconic 1990s shooter from hell has finally arrived.

Doom co-creator John Romero, who’s been working on the Sigil update using the same game engine as the original, revealed the Sigil expansion is at last ready to start dishing out new punishment after first announcing he was writing a followup to Doom’s “Thy Flesh Consumed” fourth episode late last year.

The add-on, which requires that you have Doom already installed on your system, is a totally free download if you don’t mind the music that accompanies the base version — although for $7 and change, you can upgrade to a version that features tracks from metal guitar shredder Buckethead for an appropriately grind-worthy backdrop.

Reported by Polygon to be more or less the size of a full standalone game, Sigil’s nine new levels take place after Doomguy gets waylaid by Baphomet, just as he tries to leave in a teleporter for Earth — only to get sucked deeper in, “to even darker shores of Hell.” The expansion features both a single-player and a co-op mode, and it’s just waiting to burn its fiendish way onto your PC right now, over at Romero Games’ Sigil download page.

Along with its trove of computer, mobile, and TV reveals at this week’s WWDC event, Apple unloaded a couple of gaming reveals that promise to enrich the quality of life for players who tap into the Apple ecosystem.

First up, Apple’s evolving augmented reality ambitions got a sweet introduction to Minecraft Earth in AR, as Microsoft brought the blocky builder onto Apple’s ARKit 3.0 platform for an on-stage demonstration of how to put yourself in the game’s virtual building environment — simply by using your iPhone. VentureBeat reports that Apple reportedly has its own AR hardware in the works, but for now, Minecraft Earth’s ability to layer different elements into a cohesive animated game world is proof of where Apple’s AR technology — as well as its gaming plans — appear to be headed.

Also, via Engadget, Apple announced that its new tvOS 13 operating system for Apple TV will fully support conventional console gaming controllers from both Sony and Microsoft. That means you’ll be able to plug in and go with your DualShock 4 or your standard Xbox One controller when the upcoming Apple Arcade games subscription service goes live sometime later this year.

Launch dates for both Apple’s AR tech and the controller-compatible tvOS 13 are still forthcoming, but hopefully we won’t be waiting too much longer before we can finally take our first bite.

Finally, a pair of classic gaming franchises are finding their next boost from a pair of completely different (but equally cool-sounding) updates.

Nintendo is showing off Link’s newfound rhythm with Cadence of Hyrule, a Zelda-based beats crossover from indie developer Brace Yourself Games. Sporting the overhead-view and 2D looks of its classic NES and Super Nintendo predecessors, Cadence finds our intrepid green sprite hacking and slashing in time with the music, which of course are basically all the Zelda tunes you know and love, only set to a four-on-the-floor beat:

Cadence of Hyrule is set to arrive sometime this month for the Nintendo Switch.

Over in the Mortal Kombat universe, meanwhile, MK 11 is welcoming a quartet of classic and guest characters into the arena with its first downloadable update. Shang Tsung, Sindel, Nightwolf, and Spawn (yes, the Todd McFarlane Spawn, voiced once again by Keith David) all will be getting the chance to show off the latest version of their finishing moves when the new Kombat Pack expansion arrives on June 18.

If you’re already a MK 11 premium edition owner, the Kombat Pack will come as a free download, but fear not either way: It’ll also be available as a $39.99 add-on for anyone who already owns a copy of the base game.