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Thursday, Sep 20, 2012

  

Torchlight II and Demo Available; MMO Questions

Torchlight II is now available, offering the second installment in this action/RPG series from Runic Games, a developer that boasts some of the creators of the original Diablo (there's an interview on IncGamers with Matt Uelmen talking about the old days of Blizzard North). Joystiq has word from Runic CEO Max Schaefer that the company is working on an OS X edition of the game, but that they are reconsidering plans for an MMO version of Torchlight. Here's his convoluted explanation: "We're waiting to do the Mac port of Torchlight 2, and fix whatever launch issues we have, and then decide after we've had a good night's sleep or three. It is likely that nothing that would be called an MMO is the next thing we do, though, but that's not 100 percent certain." Travis Baldree elaborates on Reddit: "I'll be frank, we have no plans to jump into that right now. The landscape is a little different than a few years ago, and creating the amount of content we did for Torchlight 2 was a supreme effort with a team this size. Taking on an MMO immediately afterward is not our current desire." Torchlight II is available on the Official Website and through Steam, and they each also offer a playable demo (thanks Frans), though there are no details on what this includes. Here's how the game is described:

The award-winning action RPG is back, bigger and better than ever! Torchlight II takes you back into the quirky, fast-paced world of bloodthirsty monsters, bountiful treasures, and sinister secrets - and, once again, the fate of the world is in your hands!

Torchlight II captures all the flavor and excitement of the original game - while expanding the world and adding the features players wanted most, including online and LAN co-op multiplayer. Torchlight II is fast, fun, and filled to the brim with action and loot. Adventure solo or online with your friends!

Saints Row: The Third; Sale, Free Weekend

Steam News announces that Saints Row: The Third is on sale for 66% off, and that Volition's open-world action sequel is free to play this weekend:

This weekend only, play Saints Row: The Third for FREE until Sunday at 1pm Pacific Time. Plus, save 66% off during the Weekend Deal*!

The Third Street Saints have evolved from street gang to household brand name and their celebrity status has not gone unnoticed. The Syndicate, a legendary criminal fraternity with pawns in play all over the globe, has turned its eye on the Saints and demands tribute. Refusing to kneel to the Syndicate, you take the fight to Steelport, a once-proud metropolis reduced to a struggling city of sin under Syndicate control.

Get ready for the most out-landish gameplay scenarios as take on the Syndicate!

*Discount ends Monday at 10am Pacific Time.

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Half-Life 3 A Shooter; Not Due Next Year: Shocking Report

French site Le Journal du Gamer has what they claim are details on Half-Life 3, saying these come by way of what our machine translation says they call "a trusted source who wishes to remain anonymous." The report is fairly insubstantial, offering obvious details like this will be a shooter with puzzle elements, has had a chaotic development cycle, and that is expected sometime after 2013, which is what we'd also expect to hear from untrusted sources who don't care about anonymity. The one aspect of this that is not predictable is the claim that Half-Life 3 is being planned as an open-world game with some RPG elements. Thanks MCV.

Battle.net Adding "Appear Offline" Mode

The Diablo III Website announces that a pretty basic feature is soon being added to Battle.net; the ability to appear offline. This will actually be patched into each game individually, starting with the upcoming version 1.0.5 patch for Diablo III:

In the coming months, we're planning an update to Battle.net that will give you more control over your online presence when playing Blizzard games. Soon, World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Diablo III players will be able to select "Appear Offline" as one of their Battle.net social-status options (along with Available, Busy, and Away) for those times when they want to wander Azeroth by their lonesome, dominate the galaxy in radio silence, or slay demons in solitude. When you choose this option as your status, all of your Real ID friends, BattleTag friends, and character-level friends will see you as “Offline” in their friends list whenever you’re logged into a game.

The “Appear Offline” status option will be added to World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Diablo III separately in future updates for each game. For Diablo III, we expect to add the feature in a patch after 1.0.5. For World of Warcraft and StarCraft II, we expect to add the option sometime after the release of each game’s upcoming expansion.

Op Ed

Destructoid - Publishers accused of trying to exploit Kickstarter.
"We were actually contacted by some publishers over the last few months that wanted to use us to do a Kickstarter," he revealed on his team's own KS page. "I said to them 'So, you want us to do a Kickstarter for, using our name, we then get the Kickstarter money to make the game, you then publish the game, but we then don't get to keep the brand we make and we only get a portion of the profits.'

"They said, 'Yes'."

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Thursday night football seems to make today the right day to post picks if you want to match wits. Last week was pretty rough for football predictions with all those upsets. I ended up second out of four participants at 8-8, and Cutter won the week again at 9-7. For this week besides my default pick of the Giants I'll take the Bucs, Colts, Bills, Jets, Saints, Redskins, Bears, 49ers, Lions, Chargers, Cardinals, Steelers, Texans, Ravens, and Packers.

Picky Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Links: Spiters Annihilation Level Pack.
Stories: Universal-EMI Merger Could Yield New Mega-Label To Threaten The Future Of Music.
Calif. Park Ride Leaves Riders Stranded 4 Hours.
Science: Dark energy: Can $40m camera help solve its mystery?
Astronomers find galaxy born at dawn of the universe.
Bird brains? Crows remember your face (and know you’re hiding in there).
Media: Your Food Packaging is Bad and You Should Feel Bad.
Titanic - Behind the Scenes.
The Science of Procrastination - YES, I'M TALKING TO YOU.



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