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Wednesday, Oct 28, 2009

  

Lost Saga Open Beta

OGPlanet announces open beta testing is underway for Lost Saga, their upcoming subscription-free online fighting game. Word is: "Lost Saga is an action-packed fighting game that brings heroes from fantasy, science-fiction and history to life in an all-out-brawl for the ages. Players start by choosing from a wide variety of heroes, including everything from boxing champs to iron knights, pirates to ninjas, and even cowboys to dark shamans. Each hero comes with unique skills and abilities, and as players hone their battle skills and gain experience, their characters' powers will grow."

EverQuest Underfoot Preorders

Sony Online Entertainment announces pre-orders are now being accepted for EverQuest Underfoot, the 16th expansion in the EverQuest series. The update for the fantasy-themed MMORPG is scheduled for digital release on December 15, but as outlined here, pre-order customers who participate in all three "Road to Underfoot" events and purchase the add-on will get access to the new content about a week earlier than the unwashed masses. The first event already took place in August though.

Serious Sam HD Steam Plans

It sounds like Serious Sam HD will be out on Steam when Croteam's shooter remake is released next month. Devolver Digital Tweets: "Question to PC Serious Sammers: will you be buying retail or digital download in November? :)". This is followed by another tweet saying: "Well all you Steam folks will be happy." Thanks Seriously!

Grappling Hook Patched, New Demo

SpeedRunGames.com has a new patch for Grappling Hook to update their first-person action/puzzle game to version 1.06. The new version adds eight new levels and a new level editor to the game. They promise: "A tutorial how to create new levels and how to add them to the game will be released within this week." A new version 1.06 demo is also available.

BioShock 2 Capture the Sister Trailer

A new trailer for BioShock 2 introduces the "Capture the Sister" gameplay mode in 2K's upcoming shooter sequel. This is a bit like capture the flag, except the flag doesn't usually scream when you pick it up. The clip is posted on GameVideos and GameTrailers.

Borderlands Launch Trailer

The launch trailer for Borderlands celebrates the release of Gearbox Software's new role-playing shooter. The clip is available on GameTrailers.

Unity Engine Free

Unity Technologies announces they've renamed Unity Indie to Unity, and the new version 2.6 of this game development platform for Web, PC, Mac, Wii, and iPhone is now free. "Unity Technologies has always believed that the best technology and products should be made available to all developers. We want to accelerate the availability of high quality interactive content," said David Helgason, CEO of Unity Technologies. "With the explosive growth in new platforms and performance improvement in our Unity suite of products, we believe that there are no technical hurdles remaining for high quality interactive content everywhere. Now we are removing financial hurdles as well. Unity is mature enough and easy enough to use that it can be the entry point for those developers taking their first steps with the technology."

Alpha Protocol Interviews

There's an Alpha Protocol interview on Critical Gamer chatting with Chris Avellone of Obsidian about their spy RPG, and there is also an interview with Chris Avellone and Ryan Rucinski on VG247 discussing Alpha Protocol, "RPGs, staying indie and much, much more."

Diablo III Interview

The Diablo-Source Exclusive Interview with Diablo 3 Lead Technical Artist Julian Love was conducted a few weeks ago and posted today. In addition to the art in Blizzard's action/RPG, the conversation also touches on BlizzCon and the new Battle.net. The concluding answer indicates the game will improve upon the PvP support of its forebears: "Just the overview, we like PVP we recognize that it wasn't treated very well in the previous games and we would like to do something to make it better for Diablo 3. What that will be is not something that we can talk about right now."

Gatherings & Competitions

On Sale

Evening Previews

Evening Screenshots

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Tech Bits

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: We Are Douchebags. NSFW. Thanks Devicer. And Happy Birthday Fallout 3!

Left 4 Dead 2 Preorder Demo

Steam News announces that the Windows edition of the Left 4 Dead 2 demo is finally available for pre-order customers. On a semi-related note, GameVideos has 1UP's Game Night with Left 4 Dead 2 Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

Runes of Magic Patched

Frogster Interactive announces a new version 2.12 of Runes of Magic is now available, updating Runewaker Entertainment Entertainment's subscription-free MMORPG with new content, including the "Halloween Pumpkin Festival" and the opening of the Naga Acropolis district. Word is: "In addition to the new district, patch ‘2.1.2 – Storming of the Acropolis’ offers Elven players some new elite skills for their dual class combination. Minor changes in the interface, new titles for their avatars as well as fixing a few bugs have all been included in today’s update."

Left 4 Dead 2 Gameplay/Interview Trailers

The Left 4 Dead 2 Interview Blowout on G4tv.com has three video interviews with Valve about their upcoming zombie shooter sequel. One clip features a conversation with writer Chet Faliszek about the game's "Realism Mode," another discusses Scavenge and Survival Modes with programmer Kerry Davis, and the third chats with designer Dario Casali about how the game's level design has evolved. Each of those clips include new gameplay footage, and there is also a 12-minute clip showing Realism Mode in the Hard Rain campaign.

No Prone in Bad Company 2

DICE's David Goldfarb made this tweet and this one yesterday revealing that the "prone" position will not be part of Battlefield: Bad Company 2, just a day after a forum post by the Battlefield Community Manager touted prone as one of the advantages the Windows edition of the military shooter sequel over its console counterparts. One tweet says: "no prone in any sku of BC2, sorry!" and the other says this: "there will be no prone.. we tried it many times and decided it didn't feel right for the dynamic, destructible world we made." Thanks Ant via Planet Battlefield, where they also note the Battlefield Bad Company 2 Pre-launch Website is live.

Steam Adds Email Security

Steam announces the release of another automatic update to the Steam client addressing a few issues under Windows 7. Steam News also has word that Valve has added email verification to further secure your Steam account. Once you've verified your address, email confirmation will be required to change details like your password and contact information.

INSURGENCY Mod Patched

Steam News has details on a new update that's automatically available for INSURGENCY: Modern Infantry Combat, the military shooter modification for the Source engine. The new version has a number of bug-fixes as well as new features such as a fully configurable spawn protection system, a new morale system, and new per-player timers for ammo caches.

More World of Goo Sales Stats

2D Boy has an article wrapping up their World of Goo sale where customers could choose their own price for the platformer, offering more statistics and analysis on the 83,250 copies they moved during the sale. They start off by pointing out that the average price increased immediately following their previous update on the topic, which pointed out how cheap some customers were being. Other trends they highlight include that Linux users willingly paid the most and Windows users the least, that Switzerland was the most generous country and Turkey the least (the US and UK are pretty low on the list). This also gives them the opportunity to thank one generous customer who bought a copy for $150.00.

ATI Ending DX9 Support for Many Cards

An ATI Catalyst Legacy Display Driver Page has a large list of DirectX 9 graphics cards that ATI has moved to a legacy driver support structure "in an effort to better focus development resources on future products," saying they will not be officially supported under Windows 7. They do say these cards will operate under Windows 7 using the Windows Vista drivers, but new Windows 7 features will not work, and this will not be supported. They also state that they may make future updates with "critical fixes" for Windows XP and Vista, but no new features will be added. Finally, the Linux driver "will only be supported in Linux distributions prior to February 2009 for the legacy products listed above." Thanks [H]ard-OCP.

DDO Patched

Turbine announces the first update is live for Dungeons & Dragons Online: Eberron Unlimited, their D&D MMORPG that recently introduced a subscription-free model. The update introduces some new features and adds a new adventure to the store, word is: "DDO Unlimited’s newest update will introduce several new features including Veteran Status and the new Epic Difficulty setting, as well as expand the DDO Store with over 100 new items including a brand new adventure pack – Path of Inspiration." they also have a new trailer on the YouTube showing off the previously released Vale of Twilight Adventure Pack.

Mac Warhammer Online Released

Mythic and EA announce the Macintosh edition of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is now available. The Mac client is $19.99 USD on GameTree Online for new subscribers, while those already playing the game are entitled to download the Mac client for free from the Warhammer Online Website. "We couldn’t be more excited to officially bring Warhammer Online and our intense Realm vs. Realm combat to Mac gamers," says Executive Producer id Jeff Hickman. "We welcome MAC users to experience the thrill of WAR and take up arms with their PC brethren."

Project V13 Art

As part of the legal wrangling reported in the story below, Interplay has released a piece of concept art from Project V13, the codename for an unannounced MMOG in the works at Interplay and Masthead Studios (which may or may not end up being Fallout Online). The art is posted on the Interplay Forums, but since viewing the art requires registration, it is mirrored on No Mutants Allowed. Word from Chris Taylor is "Keep in mind that this is concept art. It's not finalized art, but it will give you a feel for what we are aiming for with V13."

Fallout Preliminary Injunction Denied

No Mutants Allowed reports Bethesda has been denied a preliminary injunction in their lawsuit against Interplay over the rights to the Fallout series, attributing the report to Interplay investor "frymuchan." They post some points from Interplay's arguments, and some of what they hash through indicates that this case may be complicated by "inexact language of the contract" that allowed Bethesda Softworks to create new Fallout games while leaving Interplay the rights to develop a Fallout MMOG. One example is the argument that the clause requiring Interplay's Fallout MMOG to have a budget of at least $30 million does not actually require they spend all that money.

Leaked MW2 Video Confirmed

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 will include the scenario seen in yesterday's leaked video of the player participating in the slaughter of civilians in the military shooter sequel, Infinity Ward confirms for VG247, though they stress that the scene can be skipped by those who will find this troubling. They say: "The scene establishes the depth of evil and the cold bloodedness of a rogue Russian villain and his unit. By establishing that evil, it adds to the urgency of the player’s mission to stop them." As for skipping it, word is: "Players have the option of skipping over the scene. At the beginning of the game, there are two ‘checkpoints’ where the player is advised that some people may find an upcoming segment disturbing. These checkpoints can’t be disabled."

Call of Pripyat Gold in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland

The bitComposer Games Website announces S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat is gold in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, and GSC Game World's PC first-person shooter sequel will be released in those territories on November 5. The announcement includes word on regular and collector's edition pricing and bonuses: "This dark, FPS will be available in two versions: a standard version priced 29.99 Euros and a limited special edition at 39.99 Euros. The special edition game comes in a cool metal box with lots of extra goodies for fans. Besides a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. lighter, there's an A3 map of the area, two embroidered badges and a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. bandana."

Ships Ahoy - Race ON

bitComposer Games announces Race ON has raced into stores, offering the newest motorsports game from SimBin (thanks The Patches Scrolls). A playable demo for the game was recently released, and here's word on the game:

In RACE On, PC players can race on the circuits in 39 meticulously reproduced vehicles that are available in over 450 designs. 27 variants of 21 racing tracks guarantee hours of gaming fun. Apart from Imola and Okayama, glamorous raceways such as Laguna Seca, Road America, Sturup and Karlskoga also feature on the impressive list of tracks. Drivers can compete against up to 24 AI drivers in the 17 different race classes, and can of course burn rubber against real players online! The new Dual Ghost mode offers players two ghost opponents to help improve both your own lap times and those of your opponent. A realistic physics engine and a dynamic weather system that can change during a race, provides a totally authentic race atmosphere. Compulsory pit stops in the STCC races add an extra tactical component to the already exhilarating gameplay experience.

Another X-Com Revival Hint

Information-sleuthing site superannuation posts their latest discovery from an online résumé for 3D artist Shamus Baker, though the résumé has since disappeared. The C.V. had the following listing: "Jan 2007 – April 2008 2K Games Canberra, Australia… ? X-Com (Xbox 360, PC Game)," supporting rumors that an X-Com revival is in the works.

Relic and the Space Marine Petition

A petition on Petition Spot calls for a PC edition of Warhammer 40K: Space Marine, the Warhammer action/RPG announced in May for consoles. The petition currently boasts only 350 signatures, but bit-tech.net has word from Relic that there is a possibility that PC fans may influence this situation, saying: "we're always looking at feedback on forums and know there are lots of people who are interested in a PC version. If we continue to see a strong desire for a PC version of Space Marine, who knows what might happen!"

Champions Online's "Amazing" Plan

A new State of the Game post on the Champions Online Forums is a recap of the new content just-launched in their superhero MMORPG. Also, Bill Roper On Champions Online Launch Interview on IncGamers gets Cryptic Studios' design director's take on the launch of the game, discussing what went well and what didn't along with a tease about future plans: "a new HUGE repeatable 5-hero lair in November, and a special themed winter event in December. And in early 2010, we have something amazing planned..." There's also a Champions Online Blood Moon and Post Launch Q&A with Roper on ZAM News.

Empires of Steel Preorders, Demo Extended

Battlefront.com announces that they are now accepting preorders for Empire of Steel, Atomicboy Software's upcoming global domination strategy game. They also announce an extension for the recently released beta demo for the game, which will now work until December 1.

Morning Previews

  • Aliens vs. Predator on GameSpy. Multiplayer hands-on.
  • Fallen Earth on MMORPG.COM. "Revamping the New Player Experience."
  • Race On on IncGamers.

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Tech Bits

Metaverse

Safety Dance

Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

The World Series kicks off tonight, weather permitting. The Yankees/Phillies matchup is a tough one to work through for a Mets fan... there's not a lot in that for me to root for.

Rooting Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.
Play: Demolition City 2.
Afflux.
Links: The 37 greatest zombie triumphs. Thanks Ralph.
15 Great Stupid Restroom Signs. Thanks Ralph.
Stories: Schwarzenegger Flips Off Lawmakers in Hidden Message. Thanks nin.
Police: Woman Offered Sex For Philadelphia Phillies World Series Tickets. Thanks Bronco.
Harvesting baseball's 'magic mud'. Thanks theAntiELVIS.
Science: ACLU v. The Gene Patents.
Colossal 'sea monster' unearthed.
Images: Tetris Chair.
That chew toy was too easy, new level plz.
Media: Metal Gear Solid - Solid Snake's Final Days (Parody). Thanks Jane.
Amazing!: A Hummingbird Feeder Helmet. Thanks Devicer.
Zombies Attack in Grand Central Station. NSFW.
Follow-ups: Statisticians reject global cooling.
Push to Legalize Marijuana Gains Ground in California.
The Funnies: Dilbert.



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