A bit after it was first announced, the DiRT Showdown page on Steam now offers a playable demo for the next installment in this rally racing series. This announcement offers word on the demo and some associated RaceNet rewards:
In the demo, the single player ‘8 Ball’ race, players take part in a chaotic, full-impact race in the shadow of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, using boost to sprint ahead of rivals and speeding through crossover points where drivers can dodge or takedown opponents. Once players have completed the race, they can challenge a friend online to unlock the ‘Rampage’ multiplayer mode. In ‘Rampage’, eight drivers feed their appetite for destruction in an online demolition derby event, earning points for crashes, smashes and eliminations.
Gamers who download the DiRT Showdown demo are also invited to sign up for RaceNet, the free new online extension for Codemasters Racing games, which enables players to track their Races, Rivals and Rewards. Launching in beta, players who register now will be able to join in community challenges and once the full game launches, track their progress in game and track challenges with their friends. Gamers who join RaceNet will also be rewarded with an exclusive ‘RaceNet’ livery for use in the full game and will receive $20,000 in-game currency for DiRT Showdown when it races into retail on May 25th.
Activision Publishing officially announces Call of Duty: Black Ops II, offering some details on the just revealed next installment in the military shooter series, and confirming its setting in the future. There's also an interview on VentureBeat where Treyarch's Mark Lamia talks about the risks they are taking in the game's design, along with articles on revelations/spoilers from the game as well as looks at its graphics, audio, and facial modeling. Here's the announcement:
Call of Duty®: Black Ops II delivers the most groundbreaking and visceral Call of Duty® experience ever. Set in the year 2025, Call of Duty: Black Ops II propels players into global conflict featuring advanced weaponry, robotics, and drone warfare in a new Cold War scenario whose seeds are being sown in today's headlines. New graphics technology drives the stunning cinematic action of the single-player campaign's branching storylines and non-linear missions.
"Hands down, this is the most ambitious Call of Duty ever," said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing. "We are bringing disruptive innovation to the franchise and we are doing it on several fronts. We're pushing the boundaries technologically, graphically, and from a narrative and gameplay perspective. At the same time, we need to stay true to the epic realism, authenticity, heart pumping adrenaline, and cinematic action that so many people love and expect from a Call of Duty game. Treyarch's vision for Call of Duty: Black Ops II will redefine the Call of Duty franchise for the future--both literally and figuratively."
Autumn Games’ and Reverge Labs announce they are bringing Skullgirls to Windows, saying a PC edition of their fighting game will be released through digital distribution later this year. You can find media and other information about the game on the official Skullgirls Website. Here's word on the Windows edition:
Incorporated in the PC version will be updates to the game including in-game movelists, additional tutorials, retuned single player AI, enhanced leaderboards, in-game name display for online matches, and additional multi-player regions. These updates, along with platform-specific fixes, will be made available as free updates for the console versions of the game.
“Since the day we announced Skullgirls, many gamers have been asking for news of a PC release,” said Jason Donnell, president and COO, Autumn Games. “With the console versions recently launched, Reverge Labs is turning its focus to updating the game and bringing Skullgirls’ action to PC gamers. We’re thrilled with the very positive reception the game has received, and the great support and feedback we’ve been getting from the community on a number of ways to make the game even better, and we’re excited to be working on answering those requests.”
The PC version of Skullgirls will be available for download through GameFly, GamersGate, GameStop PC Downloads, OriginTM, and Steam.
Skullgirls puts players in control of fierce female warriors in an extraordinary Dark Deco world. Fighters battle it out for control of a mysterious artifact known as the Skull Heart, which has the power to grant the victor’s wishes. Those judged impure are transformed into the fearful instrument of their twisted wish – a pale and lovely tempest, a beautiful nightmare – the Skullgirl! The team is led by renowned fighting game champion Mike “Mike Z” Zaimont and artist Alex “o_8” Ahad, whose work has been featured in many publications, including Lava Punch and Girls of Gaming.
PC Gamer grills Mark Lamia about Call of Duty: Black Ops II, asking the studio head at Treyarch about the just-revealed first-person shooter sequel, focusing on questions about the PC edition. This doesn't yield a lot of concrete answers, as he effectively dodges the question about dedicated servers, saying "we haven’t yet announced exactly what that setup is going to be." He does speak of how this uncertainty related to cheat prevention, and how their aggressive development cycle does not include time for beta testing, but also defers questions about LAN support, though he does speak of eSports support, which would obviously benefit from things like LAN support and dedicated servers.
Rockstar Games announces DLC plans for Max Payne 3, unveiling a Local Justice Map Pack coming next month they say kicks off "a full lineup of multiplayer content planned for release this summer and beyond." They also announce the Max Payne 3 Rockstar Pass to allow all this DLC to be pre-purchased at a discount, but this is only available on consoles, so PC users once again experience the "Trickle Down Economics" that give the last pack its name. Here's the DLC schedule:
The Local Justice Map Pack, coming in June, will include the Police Precinct map for Gang Wars, Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Payne Killer multiplayer modes. The pack will also feature two additional maps for Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Payne Killer, new precinct-themed multiplayer avatar items, multiplayer challenges, and more.
Check out the current release schedule (individual release dates and pricing info will be announced soon) for Max Payne 3 downloadable content packs below and stay tuned for additional packs to be revealed at a later date:
• Local Justice Map Pack
• Disorganized Crime Map Pack
• Deathmatch Made In Heaven Mode Pack
• Hostage Negotiation Map Pack
• New York Minute Co-Op Pack
• Painful Memories Map Pack
• Trickle Down Economics Map Pack
Gaslamp Games announces plans for the You Have To Name The Expansion Pack, free DLC for Dungeons of Dredmor. This will showcase the work of some of the creative folks in the community who have created new content for the dungeon crawler. They say: "You Have To Name The Expansion Pack for Dungeons of Dredmor will be released very soon – We just need to do a couple rounds of testing and hook up all the Steam Workshop internet-pipes. If you would like to participate in the beta have a wander through our IRC channel."
The R.A.W. Website has a new trailer showing off the Wizard character in this upcoming action/RPG also known as Realms of Ancient War. Here's word on the wonderful wizard of R.A.W.: "While the Warrior excels in hand-to-hand combat, the Wizard is talented at long range attacks, where he decimates entire armies with devastating spells. The Wizard masters the natural elements and can unleash lightning, torrents of flames, tornadoes and waves of pure energy... as long as his mana pool is full. However, such tremendous power has a drawback: the Wizard is the most fragile of the heroes, and he will not stand very long should the enemy reach him!"
The official website for The Repopulation has a new trailer from this upcoming MMORPG. They say: "The focus of this video is to explain how our fitting/socket systems works and goes into a little bit of detail about repairing along with grade/level functionality of the fittings." Continue here to read the full story.
For some reason the Gunnar-man is obsessed with my hands and arms as I try to type this, I think he's trying to tell me breakfast is overdue. In case he has the need to pass along a message, I'll give him a shot at the keyboard. Here's what he says: ""dsefvrd." I'll leave that in case it's a coded message... hopefully I'm not helping set off some sort of doggie revolution.