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Wednesday, Jul 24, 2013

  

Shadowrun Returns Tomorrow, New Harebrained Kickstarter Next Month

A Kickstarter update for Shadowrun Returns celebrates tomorrow's release of the tactical RPG reboot, talking about the tasks to follow the release, including localization, work on DLC, and Linux support. There's also word to expect a Kickstarter for Harebrained Schemes' next harebrained scheme next month. Here's word:

Below, you’ll see the first piece of concept art and a little video that tells you about our next Harebrained Scheme, Golem Arcana, which will launch on Kickstarter in August.

While it was tempting to start another tactical RPG project similar to Shadowrun Returns, we really believe in the potential that Kickstarter holds for launching new game worlds and experiences. I had this idea brewing in the back of my head for awhile and we decided that now was the right time to launch a new Harebrained Scheme.

So, the core Shadowrun team will continue to focus on Shadowrun Returns, while a small part of the studio branches off in this bold new direction. I'm really excited about our new game world and I hope you will be, too. Take a look below.

Ships Ahoy - NASCAR The Game: 2013

Eutechnyx announces that NASCAR The Game: 2013 is now available, offering the chance to get behind the wheel of a stock car and put the pedal to the metal. Here's a launch trailer and here's the announcement:

Charlotte, NC– July 24, 2013 – Get behind the wheel of the most powerful stock cars in the world as leading independent racing game developer Eutechnyx today announced that NASCAR® The Game™: 2013 has fully launched on Windows PC. NASCAR® The Game™: 2013 allows players and diehard NASCAR fans everywhere, to take to the track and race against the world’s most elite competition. The game features the top drivers, teams, and Gen 6 cars from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

“It has been an amazing ride this year in extending our NASCAR partnership with NASCAR® The Game™: 2013,”said Dave Thompson, Development Director at Eutechnyx. “With different racers reaching the winner’s circle each weekend, we’re able to deliver an exclusive experience that will keep NASCAR fans excited throughout the entire season. We’re working hard to show the NASCAR nation our commitment to America’s favorite motorsport.”

In NASCAR® The Game™: 2013, players can compete in Season and Career modes, along with intense online multiplayer races. Supporting up to 16 players and filled with tough competition, online multiplayer action is where only finely-tuned drivers can survive. The game also includes a detailed and robust paint booth where players can create Gen 6 paint schemes to show off and share with friends.

Continue here to read the full story.

Ships Ahoy - Teleglitch: Die More Edition

Paradox Interactive has released Teleglitch: Die More Edition, an updated version of this survival-horror roguelike-like action game. The game is available from the digital distributors listed on this page, but those who own the original Teleglitch can just sit tight and wait for an email telling them how to download their free upgrade. Those interested in the game might want to tune in for a livestream on Twitch tomorrow at 2:00 pm EDT. Here's word:

NEW YORK — July 24, 2013 — Paradox Interactive, a publisher of games and a laboratory safety violator, today announced the release of Teleglitch: Die More Edition, a survival-horror rougelike action game. Teleglitch, the terrifying top-down shooter from developer T3P, has been enhanced with new levels, an extended game story, more weaponry, and deadlier enemy AI, offering both new players and veterans an experience that will put their survival skills to a vicious test.

Molten Games Formed

Molten Games announces itself as a new developer formed by veterans of Blizzard, Sony Online, and Relic Entertainment, with offices in sunny San Diego, California. They say they are: "Focused on breaking free from the traditional developer/publisher relationship and putting gameplay first and foremost, the company is continuing to build its talented team and first product." How that freedom works is not clear, as they say they are flush with NCSOFT cash for their debut project, saying they are "looking to combine free-to-play and AAA with millions in funding from NCSOFT." They don't offer any details on what they are up to, but they aren't afraid to raise expectations with their announcement, which says: "Molten Games has assembled a wildly talented and experienced team, and we absolutely believe they will create and run an amazing new game experience," said Taek Jin Kim, CEO at NCSOFT. "They're setting the bar high for themselves, with a strong desire to shake up the online gaming space by creating something new and unique in our industry."

The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot Trailer

A new "story" trailer is now available for The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot, Ubisoft's upcoming adventure game, offering a further introduction to the game's three main characters. Here's word: "In this video, players have a snapshot of each character’s personality, and are guided into the magical world of Opulencia, filled with strange creatures and crazy traps. The braggart, Sir Painhammer, challenges his old rival the Archer, a.k.a Blackeye Bowgart, while the Mage, a.k.a The Earl of Evilosity, is more than pleased to show them what true magic is." The game us currently in the beta phase, and those interested are encouraged to apply to be a tester. Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Gone Gold - Saints Row IV

The Saints Row Facebook page has news that Saints Row IV is gold, and on track for release on August 20th in North America and August 23rd in other regions (thanks nin). The post also offers more on the Enter the Dominatrix "Director's Cut" DLC, a second DLC pack to follow later this year, and word on a season's pass to buy both packs in advance:

Saints Row IV has gone GOLD!

Now that the game has been finished, Volition will be working on additional mission packs that didn't fit the main game. The first of these is a "Director's Cut" of "Enter the Dominatrix" which will be released some time after release (when it's done!).

This will be a tongue-in-cheek vision of what this content was originally going to be like, before parts of the next Saints Row (which started development before Saints Row: The Third was released) and elements of the original Enter The Dominatrix DLC were merged to form the glorious beast that is Saints Row IV.

A second mission pack will be released late 2013.

Both of these mission packs are collected at a discount in a "Season Pass" for $9.99 / 9.99 euro / £7.99, available from launch onwards. The price of all combined Season Pass content, if purchased separately, will be over $15 / 15 euro / £12.

The Season Pass will also give you the Rectifier weapon as a bonus: an alien anal probe weapon that lets you launch enemies and NPCs across the horizon! It's the only way the Zin will learn to leave Earth alone.

Saints Row IV will be released on August 20 in North America, August 23 elsewhere, on PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3.

Star Control IP/Toys For Bob Follow-up

As reported yesterday, aspects of Stardock's recent acquisition of the Star Control franchise are still unclear, as the copyright for the races and stories in the first two Star Control games were said to still be in the control of Toys for Bob, the creators of the series. Forum regular Dev found a post from Brad Wardell on the forums for the Ur-Quan Masters website (home of an open-source Star Control 2 remake project) where the Stardock CEO addresses this, saying that the copyrights are actually the property of Paul Rieche, one half of the TFB team, and that he has reason for optimism that they will be able to work this out, also noting this will not disrupt the Ur-Quan Masters project at all:

Brad from Stardock here.

We have connected with Paul and Fred. Fingers crossed but things look hopeful. The copyright to Star Control 1/2 is owned by Paul Rieche directly, not Toys for Bob so I think there is reason to think that they might be able to participate in the creation of a new Star Control game.

None of this changes the status of the Ur-Quan Masters or Star Control on GOG.

Our core team involved at Stardock (myself included) have been huge fans of Paul's work since the Archon / Star Flight days.

By an XCOM like reboot we don't mean XCOM game mechanics but rather creating a new Star Control game that brings in the fun and game play we all know and love. The *campground* is looking *flavorful*.

PayDay 2 Beta Access with Preorders

Steam News announces that those who purchase the Career Criminal Edition of PayDay 2 before the official launch of the heist game sequel will receive immediate access to the beta:

Purchasers of the Career Criminal Edition of PayDay 2 can now jump in and experience the Beta!

PAYDAY 2 is an action-packed, four-player co-op shooter that once again lets gamers don the masks of the original PAYDAY crew - Dallas, Hoxton, Wolf and Chains - as they descend on Washington DC for an epic crime spree.

The new CRIMENET network offers a huge range of dynamic contracts, and players are free to choose anything from small-time convenience store hits or kidnappings, to big league cyber-crime or emptying out major bank vaults for that epic PAYDAY. While in DC, why not participate in the local community, and run a few political errands?

Up to four friends co-operate on the hits, and as the crew progresses the jobs become bigger, better and more rewarding. Along with earning more money and becoming a legendary criminal comes a new character customization and crafting system that lets crews build and customize their own guns and gear.

Vendetta Online Patched; Adds Oculus Rift Support

Guild Software announces support for Oculus Rift VR headsets in Vendetta Online, their science-fiction MMORPG, currently restricted to the Windows edition. "We're thrilled to help our players experience the next level of immersion in a virtual world," said John Bergman, founder and creative director of Guild Software. "For the moment, support is limited to the Windows version of our game, but we intend to expand this to other platforms with device compatibility." This coincides with the release of a new version 1.8.256-258 update for the game, which adds new high-resolution textures and backgrounds along with changes, tweaks, and fixes.

Tactical Intervention Closed Beta Redux

These are confusing times for game releases, as an era of kickstarts and paid early access can make it difficult to pin down exactly when a game is officially out. Case in point, 1337 games sends word that closed beta testing of Tactical Intervention (which they seem to have stopped writing in all caps) begins on August 22nd, approximately three months after their announcement that the new shooter from Counter-Strike co-creator Minh "Gooseman" Le was live. This seems to relate to Steam as it mentions the Steam release announced for next month, saying the game will enter open beta on August 29th, in spite of already having an open beta in mid-May. The Tactical Intervention website is now counting down the days until the new closed beta on the 22nd, and they cap off the confusion saying the game will go live on September 12th with servers for Asia, Australia, and South America to launch on October 1st. In conjunction with all this, the game will be shown off at Gamescom in Cologne next month. Those interested in all this should keep an eye on their the game's Facebook page where they will be handing out beta keys and will be raffling off gaming gear soon.

Vivendi Raiding Activision's Piggy Bank

A few reports (like this one) have popped up recently talking about the inner financial workings between Activision Blizzard and corporate parent Vivendi (thanks Joao). This article attempts to pull back the curtain to explain to us regular munchkins what magic the financial wizards are performing, explaining that this will saddle the publisher with some of Vivendi's gigantic debt. Here's how this works:

Activision Blizzard is a very successful company, and has just over $4 Billion in its accounts, much of it kept in off-shore accounts. The gaming company has done well for itself by focusing on big titles and not spreading itself out to mobile and free-to-play games. They would need to go into debt in order to meet the special dividend that will be put forth by Vivendi because of US taxes that will come into play when the money changes hands. Current estimates to the amount of debt that A/B will be forced to take on sits at about $1.5 Billion.

Vivendi has accrued over $17 Billion in debt, which was the result of poor business strategies involving telecoms. The original agreement with Activision Blizzard stated that the parent company could not require special dividends from A/B, but that deal expired earlier this month. Vivendi is wasting no time taking everything it can from the game company.

Although Activision CEO Bobby Kotick seems interested in buying the company back from Vivendi, that hasn’t happened. Vivendi has already tried selling off the company, but it didn’t seem there was an interested party who had the cash to buy the world’s largest game publisher. There doesn’t seem to be any reason why the special dividend put forth by the parent company won’t go through.

FIFA 14 Trailer

A new trailer from FIFA 14 features producer Marcel Kuhn in a hyper-caffeinated discussion of new additions to the game system in the next installment in the association football game, due in September. The clip includes gameplay footage to illustrate the various features being discussed. Continue here to read the full story.

Op Ed

One Of Swords - Stop threatening game developers.
Yet Vahn often gets told he should die in a fire or kill himself or is a horrible person. If anybody thinks for a second that this is okay, it is not. But if the loudest voices in the Call of Duty “community” act like an angry mob instead, guess how the entire world views Call of Duty? Now consider that these Internet Tough Guy rants and demands are not unique to COD, but exist everywhere, in many gaming communities. This is why the world often does not take gaming seriously; this is why gamers are assumed to be immature, whiny assholes. Because the immature, whiny assholes are louder.

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Interviews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Dear Dairy Queen. Fake Andy Dick in your new commercials and his kindergarten math cleverness is super-annoying. If I ate at your restaurants this would make me consider stopping. Thanks for the indulgence everyone, I'm sure Dairy Queen is listening, so that was well-directed message.

Directed Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Soom.
Spini.
Links: Super Mario themed recipe- mushroom stuffed 1-up pizza rolls.
Stories: Man Sorry for Swimming to Detroit. But wants it clear he totally did it. Thanks nin.
Indian Point ex-employee faces federal charges. Thanks Devicer.
Science: World's Largest Virus Discovered.
Media: Superhero Depression.
Underwater Bullets at 27,000fps. Thanks Cutter.
Person swap.
Follow-up: Station that aired racist names for pilots misusing copyright to censor its stupidity.



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