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Friday, May 06, 2011

  

Left 4 Dead 2 Midnight Riders DLC Plans

An update on the Left 4 Dead Blog announces the new Left 4 Dead 2 Update includes an encore of the Taannkk mutation. It also makes offhand mention of plans for an upcoming Midnight Riders DLC release, the first mention of this we can recall since a teaser website went live in late 2009. Here's word:

Midnight Riders?
The upcoming DLC is our experiment in not having a story tied to the DLC. While we are working on that, we also wanted to keep expanding the story and world of Left 4 Dead. We like comics, in fact we just released one yesterday for TeamFortress 2. So we were thinking about another comic. What about one starring the Midnight Riders? Vote in this week's in-game poll and let us know what you think.

Panzer Command: Ostfront Demo

A playable prerelease demo is now available for Panzer Command: Ostfront, offering the chance to sample this turn-based tactics game set on the eastern front of World War II. The demo is available in the Matrix Games Website, where word is: "This is a pre-release beta demo. The demo includes two scenarios: an updated tutorial and a new evenly matched battle in 1944 between German and Soviet forces which shows off many of the new features and improvements coming with Ostfront. Both scenarios are playable either against the AI or by PBEM with other players who have the demo." The download is mirrored on AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, and GamePron.

Prerelease Saints Row 3 Character Creator

THQ and Volition announce plans for the Saints Row Initiation Station, a character creator for Saints Row: The Third, the upcoming open-world action sequel. This will be made available before the release of the Saints Row sequel to customers who preorder Red Faction: Armageddon (they specify a U.K. e-tailer, but presumably this will be the case in other territories). Here's a bit on what this will offer:

  • Play as your favorite train wreck celebrity-turned reality TV star, take aim as your least favorite overpaid prima donna professional athlete, or don a cape as Steelport’s newest superhero (or villain).
  • Save your master creations and share them with friends. Download other characters for your own use, or tweak them just the way you like.
  • Collaborate with a friend to create your own dynamic duo for co-op play. Cowboy and Indian? Dominatrix and sex slave? Tag-team wrestling partners with sordid pasts? Your twisted imagination is the limit.

Total War: Shogun 2 Patch Monday

The Total War Forums have an extensive update on plans for a second patch for Total War: Shogun 2, saying the new version of The Creative Assembly's strategy sequel is now expected on Monday. They have the lengthy patch notes, which will add DirectX 11 support and four new multiplayer maps as well as tons of bug fixes.

EVE Online 8th Anniversary

The EVE Insider Dev Blog has word on the eighth anniversary celebration for EVE Online, CCP's sci-fi MMORPG. Word is they are giving every player in the game a six pack:

Eight years ago on May 6, a dream was born, a beautiful, violent, amazing dream called EVE Online, where you could do anything, be anything and, most importantly, fly Internet space ships, which is, as we all know, serious business.

As a thank you to all of you who actively play the game, we would like to give each of you a six-pack sample of the Quafe Company's newest product, Quafe Zero. Made from compounds found only in Sleeper vessels, each can of Quafe Zero promises to boost your Speed and Scan Resolution 5% for one hour, with zero booster side effects. Tastes great, won't fill you up, and makes you a better pilot? For free? What a deal!

How do you get your six pack? Easy! Starting May 6 at 00:00 UTC and ending May 31 at 00:00 UTC, you can get your six pack of Quafe Zero by following these simple steps…

BRINK Preloads on Steam

Steam News announces that they are now offering preloads of BRINK so those who have pre-purchased the first-person shooter will be all set to play it upon its release next week.

Star Wars: The Old Republic Codex

An update to the Star Wars: The Old Republic Developer Blog introduces the Codex in the upcoming MMORPG, which will allow the player an overview of the game's story, similar to other BioWare games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect. Here's word on the Codex, which is already 20% larger than a typical Star Wars novel: "For The Old Republic, we took the best of both systems, using our codex to not only elaborate on the settings you fight in and the creatures you kill, but also to plant seeds of knowledge relating to key personages and concepts from your class story and long-lost lore meant to give more feedback at large. We sketched out what we wanted, and told the writers to get to work. "

Men of War: Assault Squad Patch

A new patch is now available for Men of War: Assault Squad to update the World War II strategy sequel to version 1.90.4. The English language patch is available on this page along with a hotfix. There are mirrors of one or both of these files on AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, The Patches Scrolls, and WorthPlaying, and The Patches Scrolls also has a Russian version of the patch.

Distant Worlds Patch

Matrix Games has word on a new patch that's now available for Distant Worlds to update Code Force's space strategy game to version 1.0.7.0. This introduces all the gameplay improvements from the game's Return of the Shakturi expansion, without the new content. The patch is available on this page.

Birth of America II Patch

A new Birth of America II: Wars in America patch is now available to update this historical strategy sequel to version 1.08. You can download the patch from AtomicGamer, The Patches Scrolls, and WorthPlaying.

Darkest Hour Patch

A new patch for Darkest Hour updates this game based on Hearts of Iron to version 1.01. The patch is available from AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, GamePron, The Patches Scrolls, and WorthPlaying.

On Sale

Save 50% on a large list of games on the THQ Online Store. All preorders on Direct2Drive are 10% off except those on this list, which are all 25% off when you use the promo code "sizzle" on checkout.

  • Atari Strategy Collection on GOG.com. Save 50%.
  • Crysis on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Crysis Maximum Edition on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Crysis Warhead on Steam. Save 75%.
  • Master of Magic on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Master of Orion 1+2 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Master of Orion 3 on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Total Annihilation: Commander Pack on GOG.com. Save 30%.
  • Total Annihilation: Kingdoms + Expansion on GOG.com. Save 30%.
    Still on sale (previously reported). Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Consolidation

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Into the Black

Link of the Day: Portal 2 70s style movie poster. Thanks Ant via reddit.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution Augmented Edition, Steamworks & PC Support

The revolution may not be televised, but the human revolution will be digitized, as Eidos-Montreal announces plans to digitally distribute Deus Ex: Human Revolution through Steam, adding that the action/RPG prequel will support Steamworks features like auto-updating, Steam Achievements and the Steam Cloud upon its release this August. They also announce that in addition to the standard game, Steam will offer an "augmented edition," which will include a digital art book, a "making of" special, trailers, an animated storyboard of the CGI trailer, a motion graphic novel, the soundtrack, and a free download of the Deus Ex Game of the Year Edition. They say prepurchases are now being accepted, though a glance at the Deus Ex: Human Revolution on Steam Page shows this is premature, but when prepurchases are enabled, they will be at a discount for a limited time: The standard game will be $44.99 USD, and the Augmented Edition will be $53.99 USD. Eidos-Montreal also offers a few documents on PC-specific features: This article describes support for AMD Eyefinity, AMD HD3D technology, and DirectX 11, this tech Q&A discusses those elements in more depth, and this internal Q&A explores the challenges of making the Windows version of Human Revolution live up to the PC roots of the Deus Ex series, in spite of being a multiplatform game. Finally, these screenshots offer a couple of shots from the PC edition and one of the game in Eyefinity mode spread across three monitors.

Piranha Bytes on Gothic and JoWooD

Eurogamer has quotes from Piranha Bytes co-founder Michael Hoge on the Gothic series, and the moves by now-bankrupt publisher JoWooD that caused them to walk away from the RPG franchise for a bit. "The problem was - to cut a long story short - there were a couple of differences in opinion between the publisher and us," says Hoge. "And the whole thing collapsed when the publisher forced us to release Gothic 3 while it was not ready." He admits they did not deliver the game when it was expected, but blames JoWooD's "stock market orientation" on the decision to ship the game in an unpolished state. Regardless of the resolution of JoWooD's insolvency (which it seems likely is resulting in their closure), Hoge notes that the rights to Gothic have reverted to Piranha Bytes, though Risen brand manager Daniel Oberlerchner remains coy about whether their new Risen IP and the Gothic series will be merged. "That's a dangerous question," he says. "That's a big secret!" Eurogamer also offers an interview where the pair explain why Risen 2 will be better than the original Risen.

Team Fortress 2 Replays, Awards

The Team Fortress 2 Blog explains the replay tool in the new Team Fortress 2 Update, and announces plans for their sexy Saxxy Awards:

Steven Spielberg. Robert Scorcese. Socrates. The guy who made those Old Spice commercials.

What do these names have in common? They are the four best filmmakers in the world. And they all got there the same way: by competing in a filmmaking competition we're just now announcing.

Go pick up the berets that just flew off your shocked heads, filmmakers, directors and auteurs. Because The Replay Update is live, and we're celebrating with the First Annual Saxxy Awards--the most prestigious made-up contest since the "strongman competition" Robin Walker held at his house last year, where it turned out he just wanted help moving his couch.

While you're pondering your next blockbuster take a minute to read the new comic, Meet the Director, to uncover the controversial circumstances that led to the creation of this major event.

Capcom Financials

MCV has word on Capcom's annual financial reporting, saying net income is up 258% at the Japanese publisher/developer: "Net income for the period jumped 257.6 per cent year-on-year to YEN 7,750m. Operating income jumped 155.8 per cent to YEN 14,295m and ordinary income increased 132.6 per cent to YEN 12,861m. Net sales hit a record YEN 97,716m – a 46.2 per cent increase on the year before."

Op Ed

Ars Technica - Games for Windows Live is a broken mess and I hate it.
Microsoft wants to be a part of my living room, and they are. But if the company also wants to butt into my PC gaming and require this login, it needs to find a way to allow me to use my account on different devices at the same time. Heck, if you spend the money on two Xbox 360 systems, you can't use the same account on both; you have to move it with a USB stick or recover the account whenever you move between systems. I understand that if you want to play on both systems online at the same time, Microsoft wants you to have two accounts, but if I want to have two systems in different rooms they don't want me to switch back and forth in a convenient fashion? Really lame.

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