Updated: May 26, 2015 5:42 pm Eastern Daylight Time (GMT -04:00)
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Tuesday, May 26, 2015




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Fraudulent ESO Keys Banned

A post on the Elder Scrolls Online website from last week explains that they've seen a spike in the use of "fraudulently obtained" digital game keys for The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited, and are deactivating all game accounts created with "such stolen keys" beginning today (thanks HARDOCP). They have a very lengthy list of places to obtain legitimate keys, and say that they are contacting those whose accounts are being closed with instructions on how to go straight, albeit with an additional purchase. They also explain the issue with the keys being revoked:

The companies selling stolen keys make a practice of using stolen credit cards, or misappropriating credit card information from their own customers to buy codes from legitimate retailers. Often these companies have the lowest price available anywhere for the digital item they are selling. Customers who purchase from these vendors are at increased risk for identity theft.

Extreme discounting below the published prices on our website may be a clue that the digital key purchased for the game may have been fraudulently obtained.

Evolve Free Update Adds Arena Mode

The Evolve website has details on a new Arena Mode for Evolve that was added by a new patch today for the asymmetric shooter. This trailer offers a look at this "domed deathmatch," and here's word on what it adds:

The short version: The Monster and the Hunter squad all get dropped into a dome. No escape, no excuses – this ain’t over until someone goes down!

  • The new Arena Mode places five fixed domes on each of the 14 maps in Evolve. For those not up on your math, that’s 70 locked-down venues, ready for brawling.
  • At the start, you select a map, then you’re in for a best-of-three series of hardcore firefights. The Monster and Hunters are locked in that dome until one side is eliminated. After that match, you immediately jump to another dome on the same map for round two – that continues until there’s a victor.

All the Hunters and Monster begin each match with one perk.

  • Monsters start at Stage 2 with 50 percent armor, but can feed on wildlife in battle to regain armor and even evolve to Stage 3. (Though the size of the mobile arena makes this a tough task.)
  • The dome isn’t coming down. So, for all you Trappers out there, your job got a little easier.
  • There is no dropship timer. Once a Hunter dies in battle, they have to sit it out until the next fight.
  • Players can’t change their character or perk selection between rounds, but Monster players can change their abilities.

Obviously, if you’re looking to get competitive with Evolve, something like an Arena Mode is going to be awesome to play – or watch. That’s just a taste of things to come.

Continue here to read the full story.

Ship Ahoy - Magicka 2

Paradox Interactive announces that Magicka 2 is now available for Windows and PlayStation 4, offering a new installment in this co-op action/adventure series. You can pick up a copy from the Paradox Store, and if you're still on the fence, here's a release trailer and the announcement:

Magicka 2 brings players back to the world’s most irreverent co-op action adventure series, providing all-new game features alongside the original’s iconic spellcasting system, humor, and always-on friendly-fire. Guided by Vlad, up to four Wizards at once can challenge a series of new levels in a co-op campaign, or take on challenge levels for score, prestige, and game-altering ‘artifacts’ that alter Magicka 2 in strange and wonderful ways. The world is invited to put on their robes and wizard hats, invite their friends, and learn to spell all over again.

Continue here to read the full story.

Steamship Ahoy - Magnetic: Cage Closed

Magnetic: Cage Closed is now available on Steam for Windows computers with Guru Games' new first-person puzzler offered as either a Standard or a Collector's Edition. A new launch trailer shows off the game and its magnet gun mechanics, and here's a refresher on what it's all about:

Players step into the prison fatigues of jailed con XE 47623, serving time for crimes unknown, who comes into possession of the prototype Magnet Gun under the ever-watchful eye of a sadistic warden. Whether it’s all just a game or a real opportunity for redemption remains to be seen. Along the way the player will master the magnetic properties of the one-of-a-kind weapon to manipulate objects and environments, solve increasingly tricky puzzles, and bust out of the sombre steel hell.

Critics have lauded the game as “ingenious” and “rewarding”, but why let them have all the fun? With each playthrough players will walk a unique puzzle-platform path through the game’s branching storyline, navigating not only the vast number of inventive conundrums, but also moral decisions with potentially grave consequences.

There is always a way out.

Continue here to read the full story.

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Supremacy Details

Activision offers details on Supremacy, the next DLC pack for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, saying this will come to the Xbox editions of the military shooter sequel on June 2nd, with the Windows and PlayStation editions to follow. This will bring four new multiplayer maps to the game along with the next installment in the Exo Zombies saga, which adds Bruce Campbell to the star-studded cast. This trailer shows off Supremacy gameplay, and here's a chunk of the announcement:

"Set against iconic landmarks, Supremacy takes players across the world in some of our most exciting maps to date. New and exciting vertical routes give players unique ways to dominate the battle through both the exo movement set and the new Exo Grapple ability. We are also thrilled to reimagine one of the most popular Call of Duty maps ever, Modern Warfare® 2's Highrise, with exo and grapple gameplay for fans to enjoy," said Michael Condrey, Co-Founder and Studio Head, Sledgehammer Games.

"This is not only the four new multiplayer maps, but the continuation of the popular Exo Zombies saga. We're huge fans of Bruce Campbell, and to be able to add him to the already great roster of performers in Exo Zombies takes this to a new level," said Glen Schofield, Co-Founder and Studio head, Sledgehammer Games.

Continue here to read the full story.

Convoy Now Available DRM-Free & on Linux

Convoy Games announces that Convoy is now available without DRM on GOG.com, saying the DRM-free version will also show up soon on the Humble Store,  though for now they are still only offering a Steam key. They also announce they are following up on one of the game's Kickstarter stretch goals with the release of the Linux edition. Finally, they outline the improvements to the Mad-Max and FTL-inspired roguelike in the latest patch, inspired by audience feedback:

  • Based upon player feedback, we've changed nearly all insta-death scenarios, and tuned overall difficulty of the game. It should provide a much more enjoyable experience, especially for new players!
  • Added 10 more scenarios!
  • Added 5 unique units that can be found throughout the game!
  • Added a new achievement and unlock!
  • Added several graphics options!
  • Fixed a lot of bugs!

Baseball Mogul Diamond Released

Sports Mogul announces the release of Baseball Mogul Diamond, a new version of Baseball Mogul updated with rosters and stats for the 2015 season. In addition to the updated players, the new version includes some new features and enhancements:

  • Compensatory Draft Picks (for teams that lose players to Free Agency)
  • Improved Player Aging, including mid-career position changes
  • Improved Manager AI (especially pitcher usage and defensive replacements)
  • Improved General Manager AI (roster management and player contracts)
  • Improved Trade AI (Artificial Intelligence)
  • Trades improve teams at specific positions, not just overall talent
  • Much greater News Story and Scouting Report variety.
  • Improved historical and fictional season schedules.
  • Faster simulation engine
  • More minor league and lefty-righty stats for active and historical players
  • Improved output for Head-To-Head Records
  • More realistic player fatigue and injuries.
  • Improved simulation accuracy and stability
    • e.g. stolen base numbers no longer decline over time
  • Many bug fixes to prevent slowdowns and hangs
    • Problems fixed with Baseball Mogul Encyclopedia output
    • Fixed errors found in some historical All-Time Leader lists

Iron Brigade Replaces GFWL Matchmaking with Steam

Double Fine productions announces they have acquired the rights to Iron Brigade, which will now be distributed under the Double Fine label (thanks Orogogus). They also announce they have fixed the game's matchmaking to use Steam rather than Games for Windows LIVE:

Double Fine Productions, developer and publisher of the successfully-crowdfunded games Broken Age and Massive Chalice, is adding another game to its list of self-published titles. Iron Brigade on PC will now be published under the Double Fine label. The developer has also regained ownership of the intellectual property.

Double Fine is releasing an update to the Steam version of the game. In addition to bug fixes and improvements, the original matchmaking system has been removed and replaced with matchmaking via Steam.

“The great thing about this change is that now there are no obstacles to us creating the best possible experience for players,” said the game’s creator, Brad Muir. “We have fixed all known issues as well as provided a great matchmaking experience for multiplayer. Vlad and his Monovision Menace are on the move again! In the best possible way!”

Originally released in 2011, Iron Brigade was popular among players for its unique combination of tower defense and mech shooter gameplay. IGN called Iron Brigade, “the best downloadable game [they’ve] played all year.” Going on to say “Its skillful blend of witty writing, fun shooting, and tactical tower defense makes for hours of replayable gameplay.”

The update was released today for PC via Steam. To celebrate, the game is currently available for 80% off.

There are currently no plans to rename the game, “Trenched.”

Evening Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Dragon of Legends - Square Enix Collective campaign. "Dragon of Legends is an action based MMORPG for PC, Mac, and Mobile platforms heavily influenced by the mythic cycle of Gaelic Ireland and Norse mythology, where the lights of faeries border the realms of darkness."
  • Serafina's Crown -- Steam Greenlight. "Serafina's Crown is a fantastical, dramatic visual novel with branching storylines, a stat-based strategy game, and dating-sim elements."

Evening Patches

Evening Interviews

Evening Previews

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: Possum Closet Clutter. Thanks nin.

Mad Max Savage Road Trailer

With the rousing success of the new Mad Max movie in theaters, WBIE offers a timely new trailer showing off Mad Max Savage Road, Avalanche Studios' upcoming action game based on the film franchise. Here's word on the cinematic clip: "Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Avalanche Studios today unveiled the Mad Max™ Savage Road Trailer, showing Max who is left for dead as his cherished Interceptor is stolen by the merciless Wasteland tyrant, Scrotus and his warboys. Max must rebuild a powerful new war machine to escape the deadly Wasteland and can only do that with the aid of his quirky sidekick and expert mechanic, Chumbucket." Continue here to read the full story.

2K Games Teases Advent

This tweet from 2K adds an ominous touch to the image from a prior tweet teasing a project called Advent according to the included hashtags. That original tweet says "Luxury for the privileged few is outdated. This is the future of urban living," and points the way to an ADVENT website promising a utopian future, along with glitches to imply this may not play out as planned. Thanks GameInformer.

Enhanced Resident Evil 0 Next Year

Capcom Unity announces plans for an enhanced version of Resident Evil 0, saying an updated edition of the survival/horror prequel is coming to Windows and consoles next year. A video message from the producers introduces the project in Japanese, though there are English subtitles. Here's word:

It's hard to mention the Resident Evil REmake without also discussing Resident Evil 0, a similarly harrowing adventure that takes place just before the momentous Mansion Incident. Both titles sported great visuals, classic survival horror tension and a huge community backing - two modern classics, for sure!

Given all those prior accolades and the game's enduring quality, we're proud to confirm RE0 will receive a modern update similar to this year's enhanced REmake and release early next year on PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC!,

The dev team - including Koji Oda, RE Zero's original director - is hard at work on RE Zero, but took some time away from their screens to record this personal message. You might say RE producer Hirabayashi-san is "passing the torch," but instead of a torch it's a... well just watch the video :P

Continue here to read the full story.

The Witcher III Patched

A new patch for The Witcher III: Wild Hunt is now available, updating CD Projekt RED's RPG sequel to version 1.04 (thanks Lord Tea). Here is the list of changes from The Witcher website:

The patch 1.04 for PC is available for download now. Please find the list of changes below:

  • Rebinding of all keys is now available after switching on the ‘Unlock Bindings’ option in the Options\Key Bindings submenu.
  • Corrects an issue in the dialogue system that might have caused dialogue looping in certain scenes.
  • Fixes an issue with incorrect behavior of Wild Hunt warriors after they were affected by the Axii Sign.
  • Corrects a bug that caused spontaneous combustion of gas clouds.
  • 1280 x 720 resolution is now properly displayed as a valid resolution option.
  • Fixes boat stuttering in cutscenes.
  • Texture rendering quality for the high and ultra presets has been improved.
  • Further improvements made in NVIDIA Hairworks performance.
  • A few additional gwent cards are now available in the Prologue area.
  • Fixes an issue where users with usernames incorporating non-Latin characters were unable to import saves from The Witcher 2.
  • Includes a series of overall stability and performance improvements.
  • Fixes issues related to alt + tabbing and minimizing the game window.
  • Updates the game icon.
  • Enlarges the loot pop-up window in the UI.
  • Fixes an issue where, in certain circumstances, the comparison window could extend beyond the game borders in the UI.
  • Upgrading items included in gear sets no longer destroys rune sockets on said items.
  • Introduces small tweaks in the UI for gwent.
  • Corrects some missing translations in localized versions.

U.K. Sales Charts

After taking a day off for the U.S. holiday, GfK Chart-Track is back with their reports on game sales in the U.K. for last week. The Witcher III: Wild Hunt debuts at number one on the full-price PC games chart, knocking The Sims 4 into the number two spot. The Witcher III also bewitches the all platforms top 40 from the top spot, while Farming Simulator 15 plows its way to number two. Here's how they summarize the activity:

Bandai Namco replace one No1 with another as ‘The Witcher III: Wild Hunt’ replaces ‘Project Cars’ at the top of the All Formats chart.

In terms of sales it smashes the week 1 sell through of ‘Battlefield Hardline’ by 53% to become the biggest debut week for a title in 2015 so far. It matches the debut position of ‘The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings’, but ‘Witcher III’ also delivers an increase of 608% on the week 1 sales of its 2012 predecessor. Available across three formats, PS4 is the clear winner taking a 63% share.

At No2 and technically a re-entry having already been available on PC, ‘Farming Simulator 15’ adds four new formats to its roster propelling it into second spot. Developer Giants Software adds PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions for the first time. Having passed 5 million sales in the UK a few weeks ago ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ (+23%) shows no sign of slowing down and holds No3 for a second week. A strong boost in sales for ‘FIFA 15’ (+49%) sees it climb two places to No4 above last week’s No1 ‘Project Cars’ (-56%) which slips to No5 in its third week. ‘Wolfenstein: The Old Blood’ (-34%) is down four places to No6 following its No2 debut last week. Retailer bundles deliver a massive increase to ‘Bloodborne’ (+286%), leaping 22 places to just outside the Top 10 at No11.

CHARIOT WARS Released

OM Entertainment announces the release of CHARIOT WARS, an arcade racing game with a couple of twists: That it utilizes horse-drawn chariots, and that there is a single-player story mode involving a murder mystery along with single-player and multiplayer races. This opportunity to get in touch with your inner Ben Hur is available for Windows on Steam. A launch trailer shows off the game, and here's word:

In 128AD, Emperor Hadrian announces a chariot race spanning the entire empire from Rome to Helvetia. The night before the first race, one of the charioteers from Judea is found murdered in his quarters. An unknown woman’s body is also found on the floor.

The head of the emperor’s Praetorian guard, Quintus Octavian, suspects Rome’s constantly feuding noble families of masterminding the murders. Emperor Hadrian asks Quintus Octavian to take the position of the murdered Judean charioteer and represent Judea in the upcoming chariot race. As Quintus continues his investigation, he is drawn inexorably into the murky world of Roman politics.

Features

  • Single player arcade racing including Championship and Time Trial modes
  • Exciting story told via a digital graphic novel
  • Levels set in Ancient Greece, Egypt, Helvetia and Gaul during day and night levels
  • Eight different chariot models
  • Male and female charioteer avatars
  • Multiple horse types to unlock and upgrade
  • Real-time 8 player multiplayer
  • Lobby, achievements and global leaderboard

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

Yesterday's "unofficial" start to summer followed a recent trend around here of the weather following the calendar pretty closely. Saturday and Sunday were both pretty cool all day, and it's been mild all spring, but yesterday was quite hot, right on schedule. This is by no means a problem, as I usually joke that spring and autumn are fairly nonexistent in this area, but after a late start we've had a pretty good run of mild spring weather this year.

Springy Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Castle Kaboom.
Ragdoll in Space.
Story: ‘Tomorrowland’ Exposes Hollywood’s Originality Problem.
Media: Amazing Witcher 3 Horse.
Waitress decks handsy customer.
The Way They Park Bicycles In Japan Is Awesome.


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Monday, May 25, 2015 Happy Towel Day

Free Content Coming to Gauntlet

A recent post to the Arrowhead blog discusses plans for a free content update coming to Gauntlet, their hack-and-slash dungeon crawler (thanks PC Gamer). Game Director Emil Englund explains that this will bring the game more in line with their original vision:

In truth, we were never fully satisfied with how Gauntlet turned out. So, rather than just fixing little things here and there, we have been working on the core of the game to turn it into what we originally envisioned.

This will mean a free major content update for the game, including improvements to the Campaign and the Colosseum as well as a brand new game mode. I’m pretty sure I was allowed to tell you about the game mode…

Additionally, Arrowhead is taking over management of the Gauntlet online communities from now on. You can talk to us directly on the Gauntlet Steam forum, Gauntlet’s Facebook page and @playgauntlet Twitter.

Star Citizen Asset Leak

This video shows off a work-in-progress Bengal carrier model from Star Citizen, Cloud Imperium's upcoming space combat game. DSOGaming explains that a partial URL on a screenshot lead to the discovery of about 40 GB of unencrypted assets from the game, leading to the creation of this video among other things. They also note these assets may not be completely up to date, in case you were planning on getting an image of the carrier as a tattoo. Continue here to read the full story.

Memorial Day Patches

On Sale

Gatherings & Competitions

Memorial Day Interviews

Memorial Day Mobilization

Memorial Day Metaverse

Memorial Day Tech Bits

Memorial Day Safety Dance

Memorial Day Legal Briefs

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue



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