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Friday, Nov 15, 2013

  

Trove Announced; Alpha Signups

Trion Worlds announces Trove, a voxel-powered free-to-play online adventure/RPG which is currently accepting applications for alpha testing. Here's a Trove trailer with a treasure trove on the game, and here's word:

Today Trion Worlds is proud to present its newest project: Trove. Trove is a free-to-play online adventure RPG, brought to life by a small team inside the studio over the past year. The project started with a feeling: make a game that evokes the sense you get when you first step into a brand new world and begin to explore. Trove’s dynamically generated worlds are fully constructible and destructible, giving gamers an endless universe of worlds where they can adventure, create, and explore.

Starting today, Trion is accepting Alpha signups to create a community that will be very influential in not just the function but the design and gameplay of Trove. Trion will be communicating directly with alpha testers and forums such as Reddit to help determine the direction the game will take. Players will even be able to create and build things outside of the game and then import their creations directly into the online worlds.

Continue here to read the full story.

Ships Ahoy - Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition

The Baldur's Gate II website heralds the release of Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition for Windows and OS X. Here's word on how the RPG classic has been modernized:

The Final Chapter - Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition includes Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn and Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal, the epic conclusion of the Bhaalspawn saga.

Four New Party Members - Bundled with the PC and Mac versions and available as DLC for iPad and Android, four new characters can join you on your journey. At the behest of his dark patron, Dorn Il-Khan plunders and defiles the Sword Coast. Hunted by Red Wizards, Neera the Wild Mage evades and disrupts the Thayans at every turn. Exercising his growing combat mastery, the monk Rasaad yn Bashir leaves his former allies to hunt the dark figure that corrupted his brother. A mysterious thief in service to mysterious master seeks powerful artifacts from across the globe. Recruit them, use their powers, and uncover over 30 new locations.

The Black Pits 2: Gladiators of Thay - Explore the tactical depth of high-level Dungeons & Dragons combat. Undermine your captors and prey upon their weaknesses while you dodge traps and battle for your life against Demi-Liches, Mind Flayers, and Githyanki.

Easy Multiplayer - Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition makes it easy to find, list, and join multiplayer games, even while behind a firewall.

Widescreen and More - Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition features full widescreen support, remastered area artwork from original renders, and a host of other interface and gameplay improvements.

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

Into the Black

Link of the Day: Happy Hour Virus. How to get out of work early. Thanks HARDOCP.

Thief Dropping QTEs

The Eidos Montreal Community website features a community Q&A on Thief, their upcoming revival of Looking Glass Studios' classic stealth series (thanks Eurogamer). One of the answers indicates that they have come to their senses and are removing the soul-crushing "gameplay" element of QuickTime events, true to a hint they dropped a month ago. Here's word:

razorstealth: You mentioned QTEs in the last Take 5. How are you planning to implement these so that they don't break immersion?

Valerie: Oh, I want to answer that one! I was hoping someone would ask. Easy, we're not implementing them. To begin with, there were very few instances of QTEs in the game; in fact there was only one in that whole hour-long E3 demo. However, given the strong reactions it evoked in the press and the community, it was an easy decision to do away with them entirely. So we're not doing it. No quick time.

Ships Ahoy - X Rebirth

Today marks the release of X Rebirth, the reworking of EGOSOFTs long running X series of space combat games. The EGOSOFT website has details on were to grab a copy, and here's a rundown of what to expect:

X Rebirth represents a spectacular new beginning for the X series, offering loyal fans and newcomers alike a vast, vivid and extremely detailed universe to explore throughout the game.

Varied gameplay elements such as action-packed space combat, detailed trading mechanics and high-speed space exploration with fast travel allow players to experience a truly unique space saga that will keep them hooked for dozens of hours.

X Rebirth features a whole new user experience - it is easier than ever to start with, and remains as deep as fans expect it.

Ships Ahoy - Deadfall Adventures

Deadfall Adventures is now available, offering The Farm 51's adventure/FPS. The Deadfall Adventures website shows where to get a retail copy, and the digital version is up on Steam, where word is:

Deadfall Adventures is an action-driven first-person shooter, spiced up with elements from action-adventure games. Become an adventurer, hunt for treasures, explore unknown regions of the world and rescue the damsel in distress from the clutches of enemies, both earthly and not-so-earthly. Join James Lee Quatermain on his journey across the globe!

Endless Space Free Add-on

French developer Amplitude Studios announces a fifth free expansion for Endless Space is now available on Steam, updating the 4X space strategy game with additional content. Here's the outline of what this adds: "The new add-on, titled “Search for Auriga” adds some new flavour to the original game, with new heroes, a new wonder and a new unique planet: Auriga. In addition, players will notice the AI improvements (military and diplomatic), as well as the implementation of rally points, per community request and much, much more."

Ships Ahoy - Pandora: First Contact

Slitherine announces the release of Pandora: First Contact, a 4X space strategy game from Proxy Studios they consider "the spiritual successor to Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri" (as opposed to the spiritual successor to James Cameron's 3D extravaganza). Here's word:

Being hailed as the spiritual successor to Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, Pandora: First Contact creates a completely new world of its own, with alien flora and fauna, massive armies, wondrous technologies, advanced weapons and much more, all rendered in a stunning 3D.

Explore a rich world harboring a variety of eco-regions, from the frozen wastes of the poles, to the vast deserts and lush tropical forests at the equator. Live in harmony with nature or use it to further your cause. Construct farms, mines, forts, and other improvements to increase the productivity of your colonies or to fortify positions…and this is just the beginning!

Pandora allows you to customize your experience through easily moddable XML data and well-known image and audio formats, adding enormous replay value. And let’s not forget the game allows up to 6 players to play head to head, co-op or in teams to decide the fate of Pandora.

Blackguards Video Diary

Remember your safe word, as a new Blackguards video developer diary offers "a visit to the Daedalic Dungeons," where the folks behind Blackguards get into a little BDSM to promote their upcoming turn-based RPG, which is currently available via early access. The clip also includes gameplay footage, and here are the questions they answer: "Why have the Adventure game experts of Daedalic decided to enter the field of turn-based RPG now? What obstacles did they have to overcome? And especially: How did they create their own, fresher version of Aventuria – the world of The Dark Eye and its monsters?" Continue here to read the full story.

Op Ed

The Armchair Empire Infinite - Battlefield 4 (PC) Pre-Review Thoughts.
Is it any wonder that video game journalists are, almost without exception, viewed as having all the critical and mental acuity of a paper bag full of dead goldfish? How can a game that has such a strong multiplayer focus, where strategies, exploits, etc. that sometimes don't float to the surface until months after a launch, be summarily reviewed within days of the game's release? It's disingenuous at best and completely dishonest at worst to even suggest that all the nuance and strategy can be parsed out in a matter of days by a reviewer. Either option doesn't do much to create any level of trust between reader and writer, that's for certain, especially if said reader hasn't been able to reliably play the game.

True PC Gaming - The Steam Monopoly.
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Morning Interviews

Morning Previews

Morning Screenshots

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

With Hudson the wonder dog on some heavy-duty diuretics as part of the treatment for her heart condition, I've had to do a lot of late-night doorman duty for bathroom emergencies, not to mention more than a few clean-ups when I didn't get there in time. Last night this caused a problem I've vaguely anticipated, even though this prescience didn't help me prevent it: I managed to lock myself outside at about 4:00 am when I went out to check on her progress. Gunnar thought it was awesome when I rang the doorbell a bunch of times to get let back in, and he jumped and wagged in delight. MrsBlue, who had to get up to let me in was less amused.

Locked Out Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Blob Thrower.
Atlantis Defender.
Stories: U.S. Airways kicks blind man off plane, passengers revolt, flight cancelled.
Science: NASA: Kepler's most excellent space discoveries.
Black Holes Matter Inside Finally Answered?
Quantum world record smashed.
Media: Screenwriter reimagines 'Super Mario Bros.' in gritty, drug-fueled homage series.
YouTube Commenters Invade Conan's Audience.
Follow-up: Compound kills drug-resistant bacteria.
Recent surface warming has probably been underestimated.
Former NFL stars Tony Dorsett, Leonard Marshall, Joe DeLameilleure show indicators of CTE. Thanks JDreyer.
The Girl Claiming to Be Andy Kaufman's Daughter Is a New York Actress. Thanks nin.
Do We Live in the Matrix? Thanks nin via Digg.
The Funnies: The People You See At a Midnight Release. Thanks nin.



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