Updated: Nov 25, 2015 10:06 am Eastern Standard Time (GMT -05:00)
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Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015

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Jet Racing Extreme Demo

A Jet Racing Extreme demo for Windows, OS X, and Linux is now available on Steam, offering the chance to get in touch with your inner Wile E. Coyote by strapping a couple of jet engines to a car and launching yourself through the desert (thanks Frans). They describe this as an "eXtreme simulator." Here's more: "Get behind the wheel of a very powerful jet-powered vehicle and blast off! Try yourself in an incredibly difficult, realistic and extremal racing. Only the aces will be able to reach the finish line, the others will be disintegrated! We challenge you!"

On Gratuitous Space Battles 2 Support

A post to Cliffski's Blog discusses why Positech has moved on from supporting Gratuitous Space Battles 2, their space strategy sequel, hoping that some who are angry about this will be more understanding if he explains the situation. He admits the game "failed," and says this is in part due to strong competition in the genre around the time it was released, but expresses pride in how it turned out. He offers some numbers on how much income the game has generated versus the expenses of developing and supporting it, estimating the project has earned him approximately $12.74 an hour for his efforts, and while he says the game "will continue to earn some money in the long run on steam," this will not rescue it from being a "relative flop." The point of the post seems to be to scold those who are mad at him for no longer continuing to support the game at this point, saying his company is doing fine, but: "I just know many devs feel this way but are too scared to say so, I’m doing their venting for them."

Codemasters Closes Malta Studio

Codemasters has closed down their Malta-based studio behind Battle Decks, a mobile strategy game. They issued a statement about this to Eurogamer explaining that going forward they are going to concentrate on their core competence of creating racing games:

While it's been great to explore projects outside of racing, we know that our hearts belong to racing in all its many glorious forms. The success of DiRT Rally's Early Access programme has been incredible, F1 2015 was very successful reaching number one in many territories, we've recently announced that Micro Machines will come to mobile and we have a strong road map ahead of us that keeps racing as its razor focus.

With Battle Decks' development complete, we're saying goodbye to Malta and looking to fold talent from its 11-person team into our most successful studios here in the UK as we double-down on racing to develop future titles that will demonstrate our absolute commitment to the category.

Morning Patches

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Interviews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

Well Thanksgiving Day is tomorrow here in the U.S., making today one of the biggest travel days of the year. Here's hoping you stay safe whether you're hitting the road, flying the friendly skies, staying home, or just ignoring the event altogether.

Getaway Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: xkcd- Hoverboard.
Monkey Go Happy Turkeys.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV - Turtles In Time.
Super Battle City 2.
Story: Rat climbs on sleeping NYC man, takes selfie.
Science: How ants create 'living bridges' with their bodies in time-lapse video.
Media: Captain America: Civil War - Trailer World Premiere. Thanks KXmode.
Mad Max Battles Black Friday. Thanks The Flying Penguin.
Historic Rocket Landing. Thanks The Flying Penguin.
Follow-up: $750-pill pharma company reverses decision to lower drug price.

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Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015

Star Wars Battlefront Free DLC Plans

An update to EA's Star Wars website from Patrick Söderlund talks about Star Wars Battlefront, saying it is "the biggest launch of a Star Wars video game ever and is the largest digital launch in the history of EA." He also outlines plans for free content coming to the Star Wars action game along with the planned premium season pass DLC:

Best of all, this is just the beginning. We have lots of new content coming over the next several months that will provide new ways to immerse yourself in Star Wars.

In two weeks, The Battle of Jakku launches. Taking place 29 years before the events of Star Wars™: The Force Awakens™, The Battle of Jakku is a free DLC pack* that adds two new maps (including one for popular modes like Walker Assault and Supremacy) and a new mode to the game. The coolest thing is that it’s the only place you’ll be able to experience the pivotal events that help shape the look of one of the next iconic planets in the Star Wars universe. We can’t wait for you to step onto Jakku for the first time with us.

Of course, we are also planning to support Star Wars Battlefront with new content well into the future. We will be adding more of what you love about the game, like new maps and Star Cards, for free in the coming months, in addition to all of the content we have coming with Season Pass. We’ll have more to share soon.

Anno 2205 Expansions & Free DLC Plans

UbiBlog has details on Tundra and Orbit, two major expansions for Anno 2205, as well as Wildwater Bay, a free DLC pack coming to the strategy sequel. Here's word:

Tundra, the first of the two expansions, is scheduled for release at the end of February 2016, shortly after Wildwater Bay is released. Wildwater Bay will be available in January 2016 and will add a new temperate Earth session to the game. This will mark the biggest session in the game so far, with a large continental area and several islands.

“This will help you to acquire additional coastal and mountain slots,” says Executive Producer Burkhard Ratheiser in a forum post. “In addition, a new sector project will be available where you can solve the riddle of the abandoned underwater cities and meet ghosts from the past.”

There is also an upcoming patch that will focus on performance and optimization. You’ll be able to learn more about the patch, as well as the DLC and expansions, very soon. Keep an eye on the official Anno 2205 forums for more details.

Minecraft: Story Mode Episode Three

Mojang announces the release of "The Last Place You Look," episode 3 of Minecraft: Story Mode, Telltale's episodic series based on the sandbox construction game. Here's a launch trailer and here's the news:

You know about Minecraft: Story Mode by now, right? Telltale Games’ narrative-driven video game set in the world of Minecraft? It’s fun for all the family, including pets (especially if they’re pigs).

Sorry, I’m confusing the core message of this post. Let’s get back on track.

The third episode of Minecraft: Story Mode - The Last Place You Look is rolling out on all platforms today!

To celebrate, the good folks at Telltale have created a new trailer to show off some choice moments from this slice of the adventure. As you can see from the footage, stuff is getting real!

Continue here to read the full story.

Heroes of the Storm Map Added

Battle.net announces that the new Towers of Doom map is now live in Heroes of the Storm, offering what Blizzard calls a "unique tug-of-war style Battleground" in their MOBA. This trailer offers a look at the mechanics of the new map, and word is they have temporarily removed some battlegrounds from the rotation for the next week to give the Towers of Doom extra exposure. Continue here to read the full story.

Total War: ATTILA – Age of Charlemagne Campaign Pack Announced

Steam News announces plans for the Total War: ATTILA – Age of Charlemagne Campaign Pack, opening preorders with a 10% discount between now and when it is released on December 10th. Here's what this will include:

  • Huge new Campaign, set at the dawn of the Middle Ages.
  • Enter the Medieval era with Knights, Housecarls and a new illuminated UI art style.
  • 8 Playable factions with all new Units, Tech and Buildings.
  • New game features with Story-based and Kingdom Events.

Dungeon of the Endless Add-ons

A new Organic Matters DLC pack is now available on Steam as a free update for Dungeon of the Endless, Amplitude Studios' Roguelike-like. In addition to that free community-created update, they also offer Rescue Team, a new add-on that will cost some cash money. Here's word on both add-ons:

Dungeon of the Endless Organic Matters update features a mix of content designed during Games2Gether community creation contests including:

  • All new “Organic” spaceship (designed by community members sarin555, Lynx_gnt & DotBeta)
  • Three new monsters including “Vultuu” (designed by community members TheMassive & Loczek)
  • New “Rosetta” hero (designed by community members wkinchlea & TheWelp)
  • Two new “Recycler” minor modules
  • A brand new ending sequence
  • New Gamepad and Steam Controller compatibility

In addition to the free update, Amplitude has created a new DLC content pack called Rescue Team available later today for €1.99 / $1.99 / £ 1.59 featuring three powerful “Rescue Team” heroes, two new monsters, and a major module.

Decisive Campaigns: Barbarossa Released

Slitherine announces the release of Decisive Campaigns: Barbarossa, a new Windows strategy game set on the brutal eastern front of World War II. This trailer offers a look at the game, and there are further details on its product section, which is where it can be picked up. Here's the pitch:

VR Designs has been reinforced with designer Cameron Harris and the result is Decisive Campaigns: Barbarossa. A revolutionary eastern front wargame on the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. It blends the latest evolution of the Decisive Campaigns hex and counter engine with deep narrative, people management and in-depth semi-randomized decision systems.

War isn't fought by slide rules. Decisive Campaigns Barbarossa brings the people aspect of military conflict into sharp focus. Operational Command isn't a dry, mathematical exercise but a gritty, gnarly, fight to get your point of view across in the face of opposition and competing agendas.

Continue here to read the full story.

RC Simulation 2.0 Early Access

RC Simulation 2.0 is now available in early access on Steam, offering a sandbox driving game with a track editor and customizable, virtual RC cars for Windows, OS X, and Linux. Here's word on what to expect:

RC Simulation 2.0 is a radio controlled vehicle "sandbox" created to take advantage of the wonderful Steam Workshop. It was developed over the last 6 years by veteran Radio Controlled Car Racer of 25+ years and an indie game developer devotid. Designed to give users the thrill of today's High Tech Radio Controlled Cars, Boats and Quadcopters on any of the user created Steam Workshop track, maps or venues. Fly some quadcopters armed with paintball guns or go on a RC Rubicon with your Rock Crawler. The possibilities are endless with RC Simulation 2.0!

One Hour Just Cause 3 Trailer

This trailer offers the first hour of gameplay from Just Cause 3, Avalanche's upcoming action sequel. We're not sure why anyone interested in the game would want to spoil it this way, but it's your hour. Word is: "Your first hour of play might be different to ours. But we thought we’d focus on some of the early missions and content to whet your appetite ahead of next week’s launch. Enjoy." Continue here to read the full story.

Paragon Dekker Teaser

Here's a Dekker teaser trailer with a short rendering of another hero from Paragon, Epic's upcoming PC game. They continue to play it coy with this, and there are no accompanying details to speak of. Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Crowdfunding Roundup

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Tech Bits

Thanks Ant.

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Just Cause 3 Specs

A Steam forum post outlines the complete minimum and recommended system requirements for Just Cause 3, just cause (thanks PCGamesN). Here's word what it will take to run the open world action sequel:

Minimum Specifications
OS: Vista SP2, Win 7 SP1, Win 8.1 (64-bit Operating System Required)
CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K, 3.3 Ghz | AMD Phenom II X6 1075T 3 Ghz
Memory: 6GB RAM
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 (2GB) | AMD Radeon HD 7870 (2GB)

Recommended Specifications
OS: Vista SP2, Win 7 SP1, Win 8.1 (64-bit Operating System Required)
CPU: Intel Core i7-3770, 3.4 GHz | AMD FX-8350, 4.0 GHz
Memory: 8 GB Ram
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 (3GB) | AMD R9 290 (4GB)

AMD Crimson Drivers Debut

AMD now offers new version 15.30.1025 drivers for AMD/ATI graphics cards, the debut release of the recently announced "Crimson" rebranding of the driver suite formerly known as Catalyst. They promise a number of enhancements besides the snappy new name, and the Windows 10 release notes outline what's different. There are also articles previewing the new crimsoniness of this all on AnandTech, techPowerUp, and The Tech Report.

Firefall Developer Layoffs

The floors are running red at Firefall developer Red5, reports MMORPG.com, where this began as an unverified report from an ex-employee before Red5 confirmed the news (thanks Gamasutra). We will not attempt to interpret the official statement on what this means to the MMORPG:

"The organization optimization was due to our strategy modification, which includes empowering the support to the operation in various global markets and the upcoming PS4 project. Doing so requires specific skill sets and experiences. Red 5 will continue its commitment to developing AAA games and bringing the best game experience to its audiences.

We appreciate your inquiry and interest in Red 5 Studios and Firefall as we take it worldwide on multiple platforms."

Fallout 4 Console Command Warning

A tweet from late last week from Bethesda's Pete Hines says that Bethesda does not recommend the use of console commands to alter your game state in Fallout 4. He was responding to a question about why console commands (ironically) don't work on consoles, when he warned: "@fortech_mike nope. use of the console is not supported or recommended on PC. that kind of thing isn't permitted on consoles anyway." He later clarified that the warning is because console commands "can very easily mess up save games" in the post-apocalyptic RPG sequel. Thanks HARDOCP.

Killing Floor 2 Microtransaction Controversy

An update on the Killing Floor 2 website announces the addition of the Zed-conomy to Killing Floor 2, a series of optional cosmetic microtransactions, as Tripwire intends to use proceeds from these to support continued development of the zombie shooter sequel. The whole "optional cosmetic" aspect of this has not prevented this from being controversial, as Destructoid notes that those unhappy with the news have been posting negative reviews and lowering their previously posted ratings for the game, noting that this news may be suffering additional backlash due to lingering unhappiness over what's been going on with PAYDAY 2 microtransactions. There are numerous posts discussing the situation on the Killing Floor 2 Steam General Discussion Forum and reddit.

New GTA Online Mode

Rockstar Games announces a new adversary mode in GTA Online called "Running Back," based on American tackle football. Here's word on the new mode and the chance to see it in a live stream today:

Two teams (a total of 4-8 players) square off from opposing sides of a roadway. The elusive Runner, behind the wheel of a Benefactor Panto, must go the distance and get across the end zone line at the far end of the highway with the help of their offensive teammates in BF Biftas. Meanwhile, their defensive-minded opponents (also in Biftas) must ruthlessly block, crash and pummel their way to try to stop them.

This new mode is available at three different locations: Raton Canyon Bridge, La Mesa Bridge and Zancudo Tunnel.

By the way, tune in to see us playing Running Back and other recently released Adversary Modes later today on Twitch or YouTube at 5pm Eastern with special guests.

UmiharaKawase Shun Steam Edition

Steam News announces the release of UmiharaKawase Shun Steam Edition, which is the continuation of a series that's apparently quite popular in Japan. Word is:

UmiharaKawase Shun Steam Edition is Now Available on Steam and is 20% off!*

Play as `Umihara Kawase` - a backpacking Japanese sushi chef armed with a fishing rod, a rubber fishing line and a fishing hook. Avoid fish-like enemies, conveyer belts, spikes, watery pits, time travel and more.

*Offer ends December 1 at 10AM Pacific Time

Morning Patches

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

I have recently discovered one of mankind's great inventions. Fleece sweatshirts are awesome, as are zippered hoodies. But a fleece-lined zippered hoody? That's about as good as it gets when it comes to staying cozy in the autumn. There's got to be a Nobel prize to cover whoever came up with this idea.

Ingenious Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Red Ball 5.
Bouncy Cannon.
Seppuku Jisei.
Science: Mutagenic chain reaction could knock malaria out of mosquitoes for good.
Media: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Pennies.
Men Explore A Cave FILLED With Bugs.
Guinea Pig Takes Cat's Bed - Cat Wigs Out. Guinea Pig or Honey Badger?
The Funnies: Stranger Cartoon - Savage Chickens.

Slashdot - News for Nerds! Read the funny pages. Supporting free speech on the Internet Go nuts! Use Lynx and see if I care.


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