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Credit: Telltale Games

Gaming: The Walking Dead sees the end; Crash Bandicoot goes HD; Xbox Live coming to Switch

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Feb 4, 2019, 10:25 PM EST

What a difference only a few short months can make. With last September's demise of Telltale Games still a not-so-recent memory, the final episodes in the defunct studio’s Walking Dead series are making their way into players’ hands thanks to a last-minute rescue from Robert Kirkman’s Skybound Games — and now we know when the very last chapter in Clementine’s long and arduous journey will arrive.

Take Us Back, the fourth and final installment in The Walking Dead: The Final Seasonwill release on March 26, via a new post to the Skybound website. News of the series-ending episode came alongside another big Skybound announcement: that all four episodes of The Final Season will be bundled for a release on physical media for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

Both the digital version of Take Us Back and the physical game bundle will release on the same day. Skybound also shared preview images of The Final Season’s box art, along with the mysterious tease that it still has “something juicy coming up later this month” that will tie in with the game.

In the meantime, the first three episodes in The Final Season are available for download now, including Broken Toys — the third episode that immediately precedes the series-ending events that’ll unfold in Take Us Back.

As developers continue to reacquaint themselves with all the nostalgic gamers who long to revisit their childhood favorites, it’s a great time to be Crash Bandicoot. One of the best-loved adventures from Naughty Dog’s mischievous marsupial is due for an HD upgrade soon with a retooled version of Crash Team Racing, the original PlayStation’s 1990's answer to Mario Kart.

In the hands of developer Beenox, the reboot — now christened Crash Team Racing: Nitro Fueled — has just gotten an all-new gameplay trailer that shows the upcoming HD version’s amazingly detailed environments, character models, and animations. Check it out:

Crash Bandicoot on YouTube

Production director Stephane Gravel told Variety that this year’s CTR reboot uses all-new assets, including re-recorded voices, for a completely new experience that amounts to “more of a recreation than a remaster, a remaking.”

There’s no word yet on whether the reboot will come with new race courses, gameplay modes, characters, or any other type of add-on content that could expand on the original. But it won’t be long before we’re rounding the final lap: Crash Team Racing: Nitro Fueled gets the green light on June 21 for PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One.

In a move toward cross-platform saturation that’s still in the earliest of stages, Microsoft reportedly is encouraging developers to make a place for the Xbox Live digital content platform on the Nintendo Switch, as well as on iOS and Android smartphones.

Via Variety, the company has released development kits designed to “allow game developers to integrate Xbox Live into titles across multiple platforms.” The shift toward cross-platform access also aims to expand what Xbox Live can mean to gamers who’ve never been part of the Xbox ecosystem. The new approach reportedly “will allow [developers] to use Xbox Live for not just Xbox titles and Microsoft PC titles, but also iOS, Nintendo Switch, and Android games,” increasing the platform’s reach to more than 2 billion devices (from a current base of 400 million) in the process.

Word of Microsoft’s plan to balloon its access to Xbox Live comes on the heels of another ambitious goal: to launch a game streaming service that CEO Satya Nadella described last month as a “Netflix for games.” There’s no word on when that service will debut, nor when Switch and other device owners can expect to begin cross-platform play via Xbox Live.