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Thursday, May 24, 2012

  

Command and Conquer Tiberium Alliances Launches

Electronic Arts announces that Command and Conquer Tiberium Alliances has emerged from beta, and this browser-based online strategy game is now live. Here's the deal:

In the game, players are pit against each other and against AI-controlled factions in an intense and strategic battle for territory domination. Gamers spend resources to build bases and strengthen armies before deploying their forces against the enemy, constantly adapting to a dynamic theater of war, where alliances shift and power over territories change constantly. With integrated in-game status and news feeds, players are updated on their allies and enemies, forcing them to strategize, adapt, and react on the spot.

As the first free-to-play, cross-platform MMO strategy game, Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances is the only game to offer true, anytime, anywhere gameplay. In the coming months, the game will feature cloud-saved game data to make it accessible across web browsers and mobile devices. Players can play from their desktop at home, or on the go from their smartphone or tablet.

Day One : Garry’s Incident Announced

Wild Games Studio announces Day One : Garry’s Incident, an upcoming episodic survival/first-person shooter created with Unreal Engine 3. Here's the outline of the game:

Garry was a typical guy, a good husband and caring father, with a steady job and a clear future ahead, and beyond it being Friday the 13th 2013 everything was going along smoothly…

Play as Garry, a freelance bush pilot who recently suffered the loss of his family, surviving through the amazons and its occupants, with hope for a way out as the only thing keeping you alive on this tragic day.

Red Orchestra 2 GotY & Free Weekend Launch

Steam News announces the release of the Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad - GOTY, offering new content for both new and existing owners of Tripwire Interactive's military-themed shooter. This is marked by a 75% off sale on the game, and a free multiplayer weekend that runs through Sunday afternoon. Here's the blurb on the new content: "This new edition adds a whole set of extra features, available for free to all owners of the game, including two new game modes 'Action' and 'Classic', the new map 'Mamayev Kurgan' and refined and improved gameplay across the board.

Diablo III Patch Next Week; Real Money Auctions Postponed Again

Diablo III Website has a post-launch update for Blizzard's MMORPG. This includes news that they "have made the decision to move the launch of the real-money auction house beyond the previously estimated May time frame." They also offer more on security issues. They also discuss hotfixes and plans for a fuller patch next week:

Since the game's launch, we’ve applied a number of hotfixes to address gameplay issues, made tweaks to improve our service stability, and performed occasional server maintenance when necessary to ensure that in the long term, players have the best gameplay experience possible. Moving forward, additional server maintenances will be required -- and sometime next week, we plan to release a game update in the form of a patch that will further address client issues and apply additional bug fixes.

We also wanted to let you know that we're still looking into the best way to address the achievements that some players lost in the hours following the game’s release. While we don't have any concrete details to share with you just yet, we will have more information to share in the weeks ahead. We appreciate everyone's patience as we work to improve stability and usability for all players.

On Sale

Evening Consolidation

Evening Metaverse

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: Ghost Recon: Future Intern. Thanks Franco.

38 Studios Closed?

38 Studios laid off its entire workforce according to an unconfirmed report on WPRI.com where they have an email purportedly sent to the company's staff, which they say consisted of 379 employees a of March 15. The Verge adds they've been informed by "a source familiar with the company" that 38 Studios also closed both its Rhode Island headquarters and its subsidiary studio Big Huge Games (thanks nin). They also note there is a semi-confirmation of this in a tweet from Colin Campbell, lead world designer at Big Huge Games: "Big Huge Games was home for my wife and me for our adult lives so far. I'll miss it terribly, but so proud. Good night and good luck." The Verge also quotes Governor of Rhode Island Lincoln Chafee attributing the closure to Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, saying the RPG "failed." They note that the game sold approximately 1.2 million copies in 90 days and Chafee says experts told him it needed to sell three million copies to break even. In 2010 Rhode Island loaned 38 Studios $75 million.

Financial troubles at the developer founded by former major league baseball pitcher Curt Schilling surfaced less than two weeks ago, but after some drama involving a bounced loan payment check and allegations of a missed payroll, things seemed to be on the rise, with word that the loan payment cleared and that the company's MMORPG codenamed Project Copernicus was expected in a year. In an interesting side note, Rock, Paper, Shotgun points out the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation has posted 38 Studios Public Documents with all the details on its financial dealing with the company.

Mass Effect 3 Rebellion Pack DLC Next Week

The BioWare Blog announces the Rebellion Pack, a DLC pack for Mass Effect 3 coming to BioWare's action/RPG sequel next Tuesday for platforms and territories except for the PSN in Europe, where it is due the following day. This was recently accidentally revealed in advance of this official unveiling, and true to those indications, its focus is on multiplayer play. Speaking of multiplayer, this post has details on Operation SHIELDWALL, this weekend's multiplayer event in the game. Here's more on the Rebellion Pack:

Reinforcements are being deployed to all N7 forces, bringing out some heavy hitters thanks to the new Mass Effect 3 Rebellion DLC Pack! Arriving on Xbox Live, the PlayStation Network and PC on Tuesday, May 29 (Wednesday, May 30 on the PSN in Europe), the Mass Effect 3 Rebellion Pack will be bringing you more gear, more weapons, more maps, and more kits, available at no additional cost for anyone who redeemed an Online Pass for Mass Effect 3 on PC, PS3 or Xbox 360.

The Rebellion Multiplayer Expansion opens two new fronts against the Reapers: Firebase Jade’s jungle reservoir and Firebase Goddess on Thessia. In-game reinforcement packs now include three new weapons (Reegar Carbine, Krysae Sniper Rifle, Cerberus Harrier) as well as equipment, consumables, and six new characters from species that have lost lives or whole planets to the Reapers: Quarian Engineer and Infiltrator, Vorcha Soldier and Sentinel, Ex-Cerberus Adept and Vanguard. The battle continues!

Civilization V Free Weekend & Sale Underway

Steam news announces a free weekend is now underway for Sid Meier's Civilization V, along with a 75% off sale on the turn-based strategy sequel:

Kick off the weekend by playing Civilization V for FREE starting now until Sunday at 1PM Pacific Time.

You can also pickup the entire Civilization V franchise this weekend only at 75% off the regular price! Sale ends Monday, May 28th at 10AM Pacific Time.

If you already have Steam installed, click here to install or play Civilization V. If you don't have Steam, you can download it here.

Diablo III Hotfixes

The Diablo III Website has a list of hotfixes implemented over the past couple of days in Blizzard's MMORPG sequel. There is just one fix listed from yesterday, but there is a longer list of changes from the day before, but these carry a warning saying: "If you have not yet completed Diablo III on Normal, some hotfixes described in this list may include spoilers."

DARK Trailer

This trailer offers a teaser for DARK, a stealthy action/RPG coming to Windows and Xbox 360 next year. Word is: "DARK is a supernatural third-person stealth action game where players will explore the shadowy world of a vampire anti-hero as he fights against the forces of the GeoForge corporation in an attempt to shed light to their dark secrets." Continue here to read the full story.

Tribes: Ascend Patched

This forum post has details on a new patch that's now live in Tribes: Ascend, Hi-Rez Studios' first-person shooter remake. This fourth update is titled "Staying Alive," and this trailer shows off the content in the update, including three new weapons for the Brute class. The new version also includes a "watch now" button to stream live matches through TwitchTV. Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Planning for this weekend has turned incredibly complicated here in the BlueTower. We had planned on inviting friends over to visit Manstovia, but one of the couples we were planning on asking invited us to their place instead, so that became the plan. Then they had friends having a cookout around here the same weekend, so they planned on hitting both us and them, which evolved into a plan to host them and their friends here, which evolved back into going to their place (their erratic behavior planning is definitely a big part of the complication). During the period this gathering was to be here, we invited other friends, so are now sort of committed to both hosting a gathering and also attending one about 100 miles away. Oh yeah, and my brother proposed this weekend to our cousins a while back for a reunion of sorts, but I told him at the time that this weekend was no good. This week he got a text from one of them asking if we are still on, so they apparently missed the message that we had to reschedule that, so we really are dealing with a case of Murphy's Law, albeit a mild one. Oh yeah, MrsBlue just called, and her flight was postponed until tomorrow, and she's not sure she can find another one to get home today. Like I say, incredibly complicated.

Complex Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez and Acleacius.
Play: Wake Up the Box 4.
Images: Wire Management Level- Circuitry Art.
Yo Dawg, We Herd U Liek Doing Your Homework.
Media: CIA's 'Facebook' Program Dramatically Cut Agency's Costs.
Moog Chief Engineer talks about Googles Goog-Mini-Moog.
Reporter Tries To Fake A Sandstorm He Had Apparently Missed.
The Funnies: A lengthy set-up, but well worth it.
Dilbert.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

ShootMania Storm Beta Signups & Trailer

The ShootMania Storm Website is now accepting signups for beta testing of this upcoming online first-person shooter from TrackMania developer NADEO. They also offer a an announcement trailer with a look at the game made entirely with in game tools. The game looks surprisingly like TrackMania with guns, with an emphasis on straight-line running and signature NADEO gravity-defying gameplay. If all that's not enough, the ShootMania Facebook Page has some new screenshots (thanks Frans), and the game's Twitch TV Channel will be broadcasting a live ShootMania tournament starting June 1st, and the finals will be conducted live during E3. Continue here to read the full story.

Total War: Shogun 2 Editor Released; New DLC Next Week

Steam News announces that a new patch for Total War: Shogun 2 is now automatically available through the service. The new version of The Creative Assembly's real-time strategy sequel includes a bunch of fixes along with the Total War Battle Map Editor to allow the creation of new content. Speaking of new content, the update kicks off with news that some of that nears as well, saying: "There is currently a text string in the game front end advertising new DLC packs. These have not yet been released. We expect to release them next week." Here's the change list: Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Happy belated birthday to Unreal, as the Epic Games Website has word on the game's 14th anniversary, which was actually yesterday. Thanks Gamer's Hell.

Diablo III Claims Sales Record

Blizzard Entertainment is claiming a new sales record for Diablo III, their action/RPG sequel, saying it is the biggest PC game launch in history. Of all time. Ever:

Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced that as of the first 24 hours of Diablo® III’s release, more than 3.5 million copies had been sold, setting the new all-time record for fastest-selling PC game.* That number does not include the more than 1.2 million players who received Diablo III as part of signing up for the World of Warcraft® Annual Pass promotion. Altogether, more than 4.7 million gamers around the world were poised to storm Sanctuary on day 1 of Diablo III’s release -- representing the biggest PC-game launch in history.

“Regarding today’s announcement, we recognize that setting a new launch record is a big achievement” As of the first week of the game’s availability, that number had already grown to more than 6.3 million.* The above figures also do not include players in Korean Internet game rooms, where Diablo III has become the top-played game, achieving a record share of more than 39% as of May 22.†

Continue here to read the full story.

Spec Ops: The Line Specs; Demo Next Month

2K Games announces a PC demo for Spec Ops: The Line will be released on June 12th, offering the chance to sample this military-themed third-person shooter. They also announce the game will be using Steamworks for DRM, and outline its system requirements (thanks VG247). Here's word:

You want to know what kind of rig you'll need to enter sandstorm-ruined Dubai? You've got it:

Continue here to read the full story.

Red Orchestra 2 GoTY Brings Free Content & Free Weekend

Tripwire Interactive announces a Red Orchestra 2 Game of the Year Edition to celebrate the positive reception for their multiplayer military shooter sequel. This GotY edition is expected by tomorrow, and it will be enhanced with additional content, including a new map and new gameplay modes. Those who already own the game will be pleased to learn all the newness will be offered to them as a free download, and will kick off a free weekend for the game on Steam, as word is: "The GOTY Edition Free Content Pack will download automatically for everyone who already owns the game - and, so everyone else can try the full game, Red Orchestra 2 will be available completely free to play for everyone on Steam this weekend, starting Thursday 24 May 2012 at 10AM Pacific Time. The content pack will be released before the free weekend starts." Here's an outline of the new features being added to the game:

  • "Action" mode - Featuring a crosshair, easier aiming and toned down recoil, reduced damage and open access to a wide range of weaponry Action mode is the perfect first step for players into the world of Red Orchestra.
  • "Classic" mode blends the gameplay innovations of the new game with the tactical and edgy gameplay of the original giving the fans of the first game exactly what they want.
  • Mamayev Kurgan - complete new map, featuring both close-quarters battles in trenches and bunkers, as well as longer ranged combat across the famous hill in Stalingrad
  • Refined and improved gameplay across the board, vehicle improvements, and way better performance and polish. We listened to the community and based on their feedback refined and tweaked almost every major feature in the game!

Ships Ahoy - Alan Wake’s American Nightmare

Remedy Entertainment announces Alan Wake’s American Nightmare is now available for Windows PCs:

Gaming’s best selling writer is taking his newest nightmare to PCs everywhere. Remedy Entertainment Ltd. today announced that Alan Wake’s American Nightmare, the critically acclaimed action-packed stand alone spinoff of Alan Wake, is now available for download on Steam and GOG for $14.99. To thank gamers for their continued support, fans who own the original Alan Wake will receive 15% off their purchase.

“Our heritage is in developing PC games so naturally we’re thrilled to be bringing the newest Alan Wake story to PC gamers,” says Matias Myllyrinne, CEO at Remedy. “We’ve worked hard to continue to make the experience worthwhile to fans that wait patiently for our PC releases, and we think they’ll agree this is an excellent addition.”

Continue here to read the full story.

Bullet Run Announced

Sony Online Entertainment announces Bullet Run, a free-to-play first-person shooter they plan to bring to Windows PCs this summer, offering gameplay based on a reality TV series that sounds like The Running Man. They are now accepting beta signups, and this FAQ attempts to answer any questions all this might raise. Here's word on the game:

Welcome to Bullet Run, the killer new Free-to-Play multiplayer online first person shooter. Set in the near future, Bullet Run is the hottest new reality TV game show. Contestants battle to the death with real ammo, real weapons and real attitude. Episodes take place on a variety of sets including a warehouse, a shanty town, an oil rig and more. Through a revolutionary "Synth" technology, these reality stars will die, re-incarnate into a new body, and jump right back into the action until the episode is complete. Nothing's more entertaining than watching someone avenge their own death! In Bullet Run it's not simply gaining the kill that wins you fame. Style and attitude, combined with a hair trigger and cat like reflexes will bring contestants the fame they so desperately desire.

Continue here to read the full story.

Dungeon Hearts Announced

Developer Cube Roots and publisher Devolver Digital announce Dungeon Hearts, a puzzle/RPG hybrid coming to Windows, OS X, and mobile devices next year:

Independent developer Cube Roots and the devastatingly handsome gents of Devolver Digital have announced a partnership to bring the puzzle/RPG hybrid Dungeon Hearts to PC, Mac, and mobile devices in early 2013. Cube Roots’ debut game features a nostalgic blend of classic RPG elements fused into a vibrant match-three puzzle game for a wholly unique experience.

Continue here to read the full story.

New NVIDIA Reference Drivers

The NVIDIA Drivers Page now offers new version 301.42 GeForce reference drivers for NVIDIA accelerators offering the first WHQL-certified drivers from the new R300 series. These add support for 600-series GPUs and promise significant performance improvements for graphics cards based on the GeForce 400 and 500-series. Thanks Wookiestick.

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Previews

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Had an email glitch last night, so a couple of stories from yesterday were delayed until this morning. Everything seems to be normal now, so hopefully I'm more-or-less caught up.

R.I.P.: Eugene Polley, inventor of TV remote, dies at 96. Thanks Ant via Slashdot.

Remote Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez and Acleacius.
Play: Double Edged.
Shifting Castle.
Stories: Joss Whedon Is On The Fence About Directing The Avengers Sequel.
Man survives Niagara Falls plunge. Thanks brother19.
Candidate for Mexican congress appears topless on billboards. Thanks brother19.
Images: Cleanest mouse in history?
Someone likes gaming.
Media: Incoming! Head On! Truck Tips Over In Curve.
Kyrie Irving Plays a Pick Up Game Disguised as an Old Man.
EPIC Slinky Running On A Treadmill.
The Funnies: Twaggies.



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