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Friday, Apr 15, 2011

  

Confrontation Announced

Focus Home Interactive announces Confrontation, a Windows exclusive real-time strategy adaptation of the fantasy miniature wargame in development at Cyanide Studio for release by the end of this year. Here are some screenshots, and here's word on the game:

The game is set in the fantastic and original universe of Confrontation, Aarklash. As the Age of Rag'narok is approaching, four factions are fighting for their own cause and struggling for domination over the land: the brutal Orcs of the Tree-Spirit, the ferocious Wolfen packs, the fearsome Griffon warriors or the terrifying creatures of the Scorpion.

Two Worlds II to Expand

Topware Interactive announces Pirates of the Flying Fortress, an expansion for Two Worlds II planned for release in September. Here's word on what this adds to the RPG sequel: "The story plunges the player headlong into an adventure that is more than astonishing! The good old "Two Worlds" atmosphere waits, which is yet quite different this time around. Exotic flair, new enemies, new settings and new weapons - all fans are in for a shocking surprise!" The Pirates of the Flying Fortress Website is online, and here's more:

The developers have also once again taken player feedback to heart, massively adding more in terms of game play: In addition to thunder and rain storms, gamers can look forward to dozens of new weapons, impact-oriented horse armor, totally new breeds, fresh boss opponents as well as brand spanking new animations in the cut-scene and in-game dialogs!

Settlers 7 DLC & Co-op Patch Monday

GamersGate is offering preorders for a fourth DLC pack for The Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom, saying this will be released Monday. The DLC is priced at $4.99 USD, but they note it will be free to owners of The Settlers 7 Gold Edition. The DLC includes maps for the game's new co-op mode. What co-op mode you ask? Well the post also includes news that the DLC release will be accompanied by a new patch for the game adding co-op support for all owners of the game. Thanks Big Download.

GTA5 in 2012?

A listing for Grand Theft Auto V on GameStop Germany appeared briefly today, before disappearing, reports VG247, where they say the listing carried a January 15, 2012 release date. They also offer the description this listing carried, though this is in that brain-harming version of English that a machine translation produces: "Rock Star is now the first official information about GTA V coughed up! In an interview with the Times, said Dan Houser, that even on the fifth GTA is in progress. But before the characters are created, developers look after the the city, the whole play is in the. Houser is co-author of the screenplay for the story line be, the sites will comprise about 1000."

PAX Prime Registration

The PAX Prime Website announces registration is underway for the Penny Arcade Expo (thanks Big Download). Word is:

I know it's a big surprise, but we're doing PAX Prime again! Join us August 26-28 in downtown Seattle for the largest gaming festival in the nation, with a monster expo hall, console/tabletop/PC areas, tons of sessions and probably one of the most fun times you'll have this year...unless you came to PAX East, where I declare it will precisely as much fun. Register today here!

F.E.A.R. 3 Multiplayer Trailer

This new trailer from F.E.A.R. 3 features multiplayer action in the first-person shooter sequel in development at Day 1 Studios, showing off various gameplay modes, which are also highlighted in this batch of new screenshots. The four multiplayer modes are Fu**ing Run!, Contractions, Soul Survivor, and Soul King, and a description of each follows. Continue here to read the full story.

Dungeon Siege III Reinhart Manx Trailer

A new trailer from Dungeon Siege III introduces Reinhart Manx, one of the four playable characters in the action/RPG sequel currently in development at Obsidian Entertainment. Here's word: "Descended from a long line of Legion mages, Reinhart has spent most of his life at the Collegium, in the city of Stonebridge, immersed in the study and practice of magic. Reinhart is known for his unconventional thinking and innovative magical techniques. A scholar of arcane magic, Reinhart warps the forces of creation and destruction to his will. His Entropic magic can blast a wide area with life-extinguishing force, though it leaves him open to attack. It is perfect for destroying crowds of enemies, as long as he keeps them at a distance. His Dynamic magic is channeled through an arcane gauntlet and capacitor. It creates deadly currents of energy with a mere motion of his hand, allowing Reinhart to quickly incapacitate a single target at close range. Reinhart is unlike any other magician before him. Rather than avoid the front line of combat, he will often teleport directly into the fray to deliver massive uppercuts that hurl the enemy back." The embedded version of the clip is below. Continue here to read the full story.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution Trailer

This trailer from Deus Ex: Human Revolution offers a creepy live-action commercial for Sarif Industries, the fictional company responsible for the augmentations in Eidos Montreal's upcoming action/RPG prequel. The embedded version follows. Continue here to read the full story.

On Sale

All preorders on Direct2Drive are 10% off. Strategy First is now donating 30% (up from 20%) of online sales between now and April 18th to Japanese earthquake/tsunami relief.

  • Bully: Scholarship Edition on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops on Direct2Drive. Save 25%.
  • King's Quest 1+2+3 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • King's Quest 4+5+6 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • King's Quest 7+8 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Max Payne Bundle on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Max Payne on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Max Payne 2 on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Police Quest 1+2+3+4 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Police Quest: SWAT 1+2 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Portal 2 on Best Buy. Save 30%. Thanks Big Download.
  • Space Quest 1+2+3 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Space Quest 4+5+6 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Splinter Cell Collector Pack on Steam. Save 60%.
    Still on sale (previously reported). Continue here to read the full story.

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Previews

Evening Screenshots

  • TrackMania 2 on Maniaplanet Forum. Third puzzle solved, no word on others. Thanks Frans.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: 6 Ways Nature Cleans Up Our Messes Better Than We Do. Thanks Jeffrey.

Battlefield 3 Trailer

A new "My Life" trailer from Battlefield 3 uses in-game footage to show off DICE's upcoming military shooter sequel. This is the shorter version of the 12 minute clip that will unlock when the Battlefield FaceBook Page reaches the one million fan mark. The embedded clip follows. Continue here to read the full story.

Lore: Aftermath Remake Plans

Max Gaming Technologies announces they are working on a new version of Lore: Aftermath for Windows and OS X, and they have launched this Kickstarter campaign to fund the project. They call this a "sequel to the 2005 IGF finalist 'Lore – Invasion,' originally launched in 2008 as an exclusive game for an online game portal. It offered players a chance to return to the long-lost Mech genre to customize and pilot a 35-foot-tall combat vehicle called a Mechanized Assault Vehicle (MAV), in a range of roles inside of eight online multiplayer combat environments." The game it is a sequel to was actually titled Dark Horizons Lore: Invasion, and the unnamed online game portal that ran the original Lore: Aftermath was InstantAction, which closed late last year. Word is they are enhancing the game with a persistent game world:

Max Gaming’s goal with this version is to expand and update the features found in the game by also adding a persistent game world that ties missions to control points and unique unlocks for the faction that controls it. A mobile application to allow players on the go to play a strategic meta-game is also in the works, and several visual updates to the game are planned.

Portal 2 Countdown Explained

Steam News explains the Portal 2 Aperture Labs Countdown timer in the story below:

This weekend is the last chance to pre-purchase Portal 2. Get your copy now, save 10% and be ready to play the moment it is released.

Help release Portal 2 early: From now until release, play any or all of games in The Potato Sack to expedite the launch of Portal 2. Your efforts will be tracked on the official GLaDOS@home page.

Each game in The Potato Sack has received a massive Portal-themed update, making a collection of 13 hit indie games even better. So why not get a taste of Portal 2 now while you help launch it?

Portal 2 Countdown Ends, New One Begins

The Aperture Labs Countdown timer has concluded, and while this does not signal the launch of Portal 2 as hoped, it does seem to indicate an early launch is possible, but it requires more "computing power." The page now offers a new "projected launch" timer, reading a bit under 94 hours, which calculates out to Tuesday, but from the looks of it, this process can be sped up through The Potato Sack games, with a note at the bottom labeled "challenge status," next to an unexplained potato multiplier. Here's the message that precedes the new page loading:

09:00 – Hello again.
09:00 – I’ve been waiting a long time for this.
09:00 – I know it’s arriving later than expected.
09:00 – But I have a message for you:
09:00 – April Fools.
09:01 – I’m joking.
09:01 – Seriously, though:
09:01 – You’ve been surprisingly competent at
09:01 – generating electro-chemical energy to jumpstart the system.
09:01 – But now we need raw computational power
09:02 – to speed up the reboot process.

Ships Ahoy - Armada 2526: Supernova

Matrix Games announces the release of Armada 2526: Supernova, an expansion for Armada 2526, the sci-fi 4X turn-based strategy/real time tactics game developed by Ntronium Games. The new version adds LAN and PBEM multiplayer support along with new content. Here's a bit:

There are new star and planet types to discover, and more than 30 special features to make each star system distinctive. You may encounter tachyon storms, psychic plants, primitives or find abandoned alien technology that advances your own research. Two new races, with their own ships and special characteristics, await your discovery. Befriend them, play as them, or exterminate them as you wish.

U.S. Retail Gaming Sales Slip 4%

Retail video game sales slipped 4% in the U.S. in March, reports the NDP, by way of the Los Angeles Times. The software side is the root of this, as they say sales of video and computer games fell 16% to $735.4 million, compared with $875.7 million a year earlier. Hardware sales were up 12% to $494.5 million in March, driven by sales of the 3DS, Kinect, and Move controllers. The article acknowledges that the software slippage is in part explainable by the continued shift to digital distribution: "The silver lining for the game industry may be that consumers aren't cutting back their overall spending on games. Instead, they may be shifting their spending away from games and consoles sold at retails stores and toward buying "apps" for mobile devices such as Apple's iPad, playing online social games or buying games they can download to consoles or computers -- all sales that are not included in Thursday's figures."

Down Under Steam Pricing

The Australian Steam Price Comparison Preview on AusGamers.com has a look at a system they are creating to compare Steam price differences between Australia and other regions. There are a number of cases where the price gap is quite significant, which they explain like this: "It should be noted that Steam and Valve are not responsible for the pricing of these games. The pricing is set by the publisher (listed in the far right column, where we have that information available). The fault of the price differential does not lie with Valve; it lies with the publisher that has decided to use Steam's region-specific pricing to price-gouge Australians." Thanks th4w.

Best Buy Adding Game Staff

Electronics giant Best Buy is planning on adding sales clerks and in-store sales desks specifically to support videogames, reports Gamasutra from an Analyst Day. This will apparently offer customers the same expertise on games that they can get about the other products they sell, as Best Buy describes the plan to add "dedicated, informed, and engaged employees focused only on gaming." They will drive customers to preorder games and "exclusive digital add-ons," and staff gaming desks, which will "create the destination for trade, preorder and digital offers." They say the changes will take place between now and February 2012.

Victoria II Patch

Paradox Interactive offers a new patch for Victoria II to update the grand strategy sequel to version 1.3 with a bunch of improvements. The patch is available on this page, and the lengthy patch notes detail everything it does. The list of major changes follows. Continue here to read the full story.

Op Ed

Ten Ton Hammer - Money, Failocs and Queues- The Real Cost of BlizzCon Tickets.
Most people forget that you’re paying for the entry to the event and the goody bag - while they do cost Blizzard a fair amount to put together - is just a bonus. You’re there to see whatever announcements Blizzard has up their sleeve and the free pet/mount sweetens the deal. Granted, the goody bag is getting more impressive. It was - frankly - refreshing to see all the crap and clutter axed from last year’s bag so it comprised of just the gorgeous Deathwing marquette, a genuinely-useful Authenticator, the pet card and a sample of the official magazine (well, you can’t have everything).

Morning Screenshots

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

  • 5-Way Intel P67 Motherboard Shootout on TechSpot.
  • Antec Six Hundred Gaming Case on Tech-Reviews.
  • ASUS G73SW Sandy Bridge Gaming Notebook on HotHardware.
  • ASUS GeForce GTX 550 Ti DirectCU TOP Overclocked Graphics Card on TweakTown.
  • ASUS HD 6970 Direct CUII Graphics Card on t-break.
  • ASUS P8P76 WS Revolution Motherboard on InsideHW.
  • ASUS Sabertooth P67 Motherboard on OverclockersHQ.com.
  • Corsair AirFlow Pro Memory Temperature Monitor on Techgage.
  • Corsair Gaming Audio Series HS1A Headset on [H]ard-OCP.
  • Eagle Tech Consus P-Series 2.5” SATA to USB & eSATA Enclosure on eTeknix.com.
  • G.Skill Ripjaws-X DDR3-2133 8GB Dual Channel RAM Kit on ThinkComputers.org.
  • InWin Dragon Slayer Case on Neoseeker.
  • MSI GeForce GTX 580 Lightning Graphics Card on Guru3D.
  • Noctua NH-C14 Vs Thermaltake Frio Ock CPU Coolers on CDRinfo.
  • Patriot SuperSonic 64GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive on Overclockers Club.
  • Powermat Wireless Charging Unit & Receiving Unit on eTeknix.com.
  • Sapphire Roundup on Hardware Heaven.
  • SteelSeries Spectrum 5XB Gaming Headset - Xbox 360 on HEXUS.
  • System76 Serval Professional Sandy Bridge Laptop on [Phoronix].
  • Thermaltake Challenger Pro Gaming Keyboard on Overclockers Online.
  • Thermaltake eSPORTS Shock Headset on PureOC.
  • TRENDnet TV-IP612WN ProView Wireless N Pan-Tilt-Zoom Internet Camera on Mad Shrimps.

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