This trailer offers the promised (sort of) first look at Cyberpunk 2077, CD Projekt RED's upcoming sci-fi RPG. On a related note, VG247 has word that freezing frames in the trailer reveals text saying CD Projekt RED is "about to reveal" a "project, which is much closer to being completed" than Cyberpunk 2077. "It will also be a fully open-world game with an intense story," the tease goes on to say, before suggesting this is Witcher-related by adding "You can probably guess the game we’re talking about." Apparently "all will be clear" on February 5th. Finally, CD Projekt RED sends along some further details on the game, introducing the concept of "Braindances," which are "digital recordings of a person’s experience." Here's word on the new cinematic trailer:
“The teaser shows how the Psycho Squad might acquire a new member. The Psycho Squad specializes in combating “psychos” – individuals who overuse implants and substances that boost or otherwise alter the human body. There comes a point when they overdose on these innovations, and their bodies start to rebel against their biological body parts as well as against all things organic around them. Simply put, they start killing people, who they now derisively call 'meatbags.'
Matrix Games announces a new version 3.11.1 update is now available for Harpoon - Ultimate Edition, the naval strategy game. Word is: "This comprehensive update adds in an updated Database, perfect for scenario creators and editors to tailor their scenarios to their choosing with more variety. The update also fixes and improves the Boarding and Takeover feature for those daring players that bring the fight to their enemies in the water just that much closer! Other additions include a new victory condition that requires the possession of certain units, which works similar to the Protect Unit victory condition." The patch can be found on this downloads page.
Gamasutra - How retail figures may point to a coming disruption. These new developers and publishers can make a living, even thrive, selling games at $1 or $2 per unit on platforms like iOS and Android. They are inheriting those consumers who no longer buy traditional game systems and physical game software, reeling them in with inexpensive or even free-to-play software with in-app purchases. These games simply cannot deliver the experience that Call of Duty can on a console, but they don't have to. They just have to be good enough and priced low enough for consumers to buy them.
The Capcom Vancouver Website has a very general tease for "Capcom’s next big game." The studio formerly known as Blue Castle Games participated in development of Dead Rising 2, but the one clue about the new game us that it will not actually contain zombies. There are no further details, as they look to enlist more developers, saying: "We’re just getting started with the game so this is a great chance to really get your hands deep into the design." Thanks Eurogamer.
Grinding Gear Games announces that open beta testing of Path of Exile begins on January 23rd, offering the chance to sample this upcoming action/RPG. "We're excited to have reached the point where we can finally throw open the doors and invite everyone in," said Chris Wilson, producer for Grinding Gear Games. "We have one of the best and most supportive communities on the Internet, and their input has been invaluable in making Path of Exile what it is. We hope they'll be delighted with all the new content." The open beta will introduce content from Act 3, and there will be no character wipes after it begins. Here's more on the game:
Path of Exile is a PC online action role-playing game set in a dark fantasy world. Featuring ethical microtransactions, the game is free-to-play, but not pay-to-win. Playing as one of six character classes, players find themselves banished for their past misdeeds to the dark fantasy world of Wraeclast. There, they will encounter hundreds of species of opponents laden with loot and mysterious artifacts as they explore the abandoned continent.
An interview on PCGamesN hears from (David) Braben of Frontier (Developments) about Elite: Dangerous, the recently Kickstarted space simulation remake (thanks Polygon). This includes some details about the game, including a Sagan-esque billions and billions of stars:
The game will take place in a procedurally generated Milky Way hosting over 100 billion stars (including our own, and by extension, the planet Earth), each with anything up to one hundred bodies in them. A "truly giant galaxy of vast numbers" as Braben puts it.
Some other info-nugs the developer was happy to divulge: the game will begin some 50 years after Frontier: First Encounters, around the year 3300. And Thargoids, Elite's insectoid, warlike alien race, will definitely make their return (though in what capacity, Braben wouldn't reveal). In case you've forgotten what those bastards look like, here's one. If you're not legitimately terrified, congratulations, you are under the age of 30.
On a related note, Gamasutra offers a video from GDC 2011 where Braben discusses the development of the original Elite.
The SEGA Blog now offers a new trailer of the alien hive from Aliens: Colonial Marines, showing how this environment is realized in the game, contrasting their concept art with the finished level. Word is: "The Alien Hive is a dark, imposing place of fear you won’t soon forget. Bring your friends and enter the hive in Aliens: Colonial Marines on February 12, 2013." Continue here to read the full story.
PCWorld and PCMag.com offer hands-on impressions of the Oculus Rift VR headset based on checking it out at CES 2013. Though Valve's Michael Abrash recently discussed technical hurdles standing in the way of making the gameplay part of virtual reality a reality, each site raves about the quality of the experience so far. Here's a quote from PC Magazine:
After the 3D effect of the Oculus Rift, the head tracking provided the most sense of immersion. I didn't just see objects with depth, I saw them as if I was looking at them with my own eyes. The Oculus Rift tracked every movement of my head as I looked around, tilting and shifting the picture appropriately. I found myself watching a snowflake fall from the sky and moving my head to follow it. I looked from high above my head down to the ground as the snowflake fell. I couldn't see my feet or any other part of my body, but, again, this is a software issue. The effect was still incredible.
The Citadel demo was the most detailed, but it wasn't interactive. That's why Oculus VR prepared another demo that put me in the action. I played a modified version of Unreal Tournament 3 that incorporated the Oculus Rift's head-tracking into the gameplay. The effect was incredibly immersive, making me aim with both my thumbs and my head to get bots in my non-existent sights. There were no displays in the game, which meant no reticle or health information. Again, this was just a proof of concept demo, and while I learned to aim with my head quickly, real games for the Oculus Rift will have to balance aiming and head-tracking and incorporate a reticle in the display.
The PC Gaming Alliance announces that HAWKEN publisher Meteor Entertainment is the newest member of this industry trade group. This also serves as a reminder that the group is still in existence, as the public is not privy to much information about its day-to-day activities. Update: Snarkiness aside, a True PC Gaming podcast from last month speaks with Intel's Matt Ployhar, the PC Gaming Alliance president. Word is: "Matt talks about piracy, EULA and the misconception of PC gaming cost."