Updated: May 25, 2017 08:27 am Eastern Daylight Time (GMT -04:00)
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Thursday, May 25, 2017 Happy Towel Day




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Grim Dawn Sells 1M Copies

Crate Entertainment announces Grim Dawn has now sold more than one million copies since the release of this crowdfunded action/RPG for Windows. Calling this an "epic milestone," they have put the game on sale to celebrate, and note that they are almost finished with the game's expansion:

We at Crate Entertainment are thrilled to announce that Grim Dawn has now sold over one million copies on PC, plus over 200k copies of the Crucible arena mode DLC!

In celebration of this epic milestone, we’ve marked Grim Dawn 50% off through our website until the end of May. It is also currently 50% off through Humble Store, during their spring encore sale!

It’s crazy to think that this success story somehow arose from such humble and uncertain beginnings, overcoming so many setbacks and challenges. I repeatedly questioned what I was doing those first three, hard years of development. Looking back, I think the only thing that kept me going on the bad days, was the responsibility I felt to see it through, for the people who had invested time in the project and those who supported us early on through our website. Even with that drive to see it through, no matter my doubts, the later support of thousands more backers on Kickstarter and Early Access, validated what we were doing and gave us a real shot at making the dream a reality.

It was still a long road and lot of sweat and tears, from the 2012 Kickstarter to our 2016 release but I had the great fortune to find amazing teammates who made that journey a lot easier and the game much better than it could have been otherwise. Much thanks must also go to my long-time friends “Rhis,” “Jmack” and Brian Parnell (now working on his own project Praey for the Gods) – without their early help; Grim Dawn may have never got off the ground.

Since the release of Grim Dawn, the Crate team has grown to 14 developers. We’re now working to finish up the Grim Dawn expansion and, because we can never seem to make things easy on ourselves, we’ve started some other projects as well.

We’re looking forward to getting the Grim Dawn expansion into the hands of fans and we can’t wait to share news about our future projects. Until then, keep perfecting your builds, collecting those crafting mats, making morally questionable quest choices and remember it’s not healthy to spend too much time in the void!

...Oh and try not to piss off any gods (or do?), keep away from Loxmere and don’t eat too many untouched meals – who knows where they’ve been!

Sincerely,

Arthur and the Crate Team

Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 Multiplayer DLC Trial Pack Next Week

A Call of Duty blog post has word that on May 30th they will offer the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 Multiplayer DLC Trial Pack, a 30-day free trial of the DLC for the shooter sequel. This will happen automatically, so this post on Steam explains how to opt out if for some reason you don't want to download all that. Here's word on the plan:

Next week, starting on Tuesday, May 30 at 10am/PDT, we’re kicking off the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 Multiplayer DLC Trial Pack for PC, a 30-day free trial that will give players access to all of the multiplayer goodness found in all four Downloadable Content packs. Furthermore, all of the MP maps will be added to all of the playlists.

Already own the DLC?

Glad you asked. . .

If you already own the DLC that you’re playing, you’ll get a 2XP reward. The deal is even sweeter for Season Pass owners, who will receive 2XP on all multiplayer maps. And those offers last through the duration of the 30-day trial.

Free Witcher 2 for GWENT Testers

GameInformer.com has good news for those who participated in closed beta testing of GWENT: The Witcher Card Game now that it is in open beta, saying these testers are entitled to a free copy of The Witcher 2 (thanks GameSpot). They say the way to collect on this is pretty simple: "Simply log into the GOG account you used for the beta and follow the instructions to claim your copy before 8 a.m. EST [sic] on May 29."

PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS Patch Delayed

This tweet announces that the patch for PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS that was expected today is being postponed until next week (thanks PCGamesN). Here's word:

Due to several major issues w/ the Test Server build, we need to push the monthly update to next week to give us time to resolve them fully.

Sonder. Episode ONE Early Access

Sonder. Episode ONE is now available for Windows on Steam as an early access release (and we see they've replaced the lowercase "s" in the title with an even more unconventional period along the way). This is actually late news on the early access, which first happened a couple of weeks ago, though the good news there is this post from last week saying all known crash bugs are now resolved. The plot combines a couple of sci-fi tropes as a mysterious early wake up call for some astronauts travelling in cryogenic sleep leads to a time-looping mystery. The developer's outlook on this is reflected in this line in their note to us about the release: "Sonder is a very peculiar game, with a lot of bold design choices – and it does not hold the player’s hand as they become aware of those choices. We are on Early Access in order to flesh out some of the unique features of the game, and get as much feedback from players as possible." Here's an early access release trailer, and here's a bit more:

Sonder. is a SciFi third-person Mystery Adventure game unlike anything you have ever played before. It is an interactive nonlinear time loop where you are in total control of space, time and the lives of everyone in it.

You are given a section of time to analyze - you can observe from the sidelines as the same mistakes are being made over and over again, or you can take control of any character, at any time and experience events from that character's unique perspective. Then you may guide them to the choices that will ultimately lead them to salvation - or bring them to their doom.

Time marches forward mercilessly for the characters, but for you it is merely a resource. You can restart the time loop at any time, as many times as you wish. You can rewind to any past point within the loop and attempt to change what happens from that point onward.

Continue here to read the full story.

Hover : Revolt Of Gamers Next Week

Publisher The Sidekicks announces that Hover : Revolt Of Gamers will be officially released on May 31st after a two-plus year early access run (and jump) for this parkour game. Word is the release version includes end game content not present in the early access version, and they point the way to this YOGSCAST video (amateur freestyling warning) showing the game's progress. Here's word on the game, which seems almost like a footloose, futuristic strip of Kevin Bacon:

The game takes place in ECP17, a high-tech city also called Hover City by its inhabitants and located on a distant planet. The Great Admin cut the communication with the Galactic Union and established a strong dictatorship. Having fun has become illegal and entertainment is banished.

You're in charge of a team of young rebels, the Gamers, fighting against the new anti-leisure laws oppressing the city. Equipped with high-tech gears allowing amazing jumps and speed, they roam the city to sabotage the propaganda, help citizens, and find a way to reach the Orbital Station. This way they could warn the Galactic Union and put an end to the oppression.

Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Interviews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

Happy Towel Day! Also, 40 years ago today was the debut of Star Wars, the movie eventually subtitled A New Hope. It's safe to say that at that time no one could have foreseen the impact this would make on our culture, as the ensuing years saw a sci-fi boom that still has ripples today, as the box office results of Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 can easily confirm. May the Force be with you, always.

Forceful Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: The Last Bunker.
Link: The $11 million it took to make “Star Wars” in 1977 was the best money ever spent in Hollywood.
Story: Manchester attack: Police 'not sharing information with US.'
Science: Kick-off for the 2017 LHC physics season - CERN. Thanks Dario.
Media: Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets - Final Trailer.
Crashing a Lego-Porsche 911 GT3 R.
Reprise du Flyboard Air avec Franky Lake Havasu en Arizona. Thanks Hypothermia.


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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Awesomenauts Now Free-to-Play

Steam News announces the promised free-to-play era is now underway for Awesomenauts. You can find all the details on how this works in this post, and here's the announcement:

Awesomenauts is Now Free to Play on Steam!

Conflict spans the stars as huge robot armies are locked in an enduring battle. Head out to the battlefields with your friends in this 3-on-3 action platformer. Best of all: it's completely free to play!

GWENT Open Beta

GOG.com announces open beta testing of GWENT: The Witcher Card Game. The announcement features a new extended cinematic trailer, a new gameplay trailer, and some details on testing and the run up to the game's official release:

Time to make those cards sing.

CD PROJEKT RED just announced the start of Public Beta for GWENT: The Witcher Card Game for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

For those who still haven't felt its warm embrace, GWENT is an engrossing card game featuring creatures, characters, and lore from The Witcher series.

You can download GWENT from GOG.com and start playing immediately.

Moreover, since the game is powered by GOG Galaxy, those playing on PC will be able to do battle with their Xbox One and PS4 friends!

“Public Beta is an important step towards GWENT’s final release,” said Marcin Iwiński, co-founder of CD PROJEKT RED. “We’re opening the gates to everyone who wanted to play, but didn’t make it into the Closed Beta, and — at the same time — we’re introducing some pretty significant content and gameplay changes like adding animated versions of cards for every card in the game, new starter decks, or how weather cards work,” Iwiński adds. “I’m extra curious how all of the community feedback we’ve incorporated will resonate with both current players and those who’re just starting. Please keep the feedback coming, we’re listening!”

In addition to the cinematic trailer, CD PROJEKT RED has also released a gameplay video presenting GWENT’s features (you can watch them both below), and a set of faction videos covering the playstyles of each of the game’s five factions.

More information about GWENT and the Public Beta is available in the FAQ section of playgwent.com.

Continue here to read the full story.

Fallout 4 Free Weekend

Bethesda.net announces a free weekend will get underway tomorrow for the Windows and Xbox One editions of Fallout 4. They include a new trailer to celebrate the news, and explain that the post-apocalyptic RPG sequel is also going on sale:

This weekend you can explore everything a post-nuclear Boston has to offer with the first-ever Fallout 4 Free Weekend. From May 25 to 28, Xbox Live Gold Members and Steam users will be able to play all of Fallout 4's base content and try out Mods for free.

In tandem, Steam, PlayStation Store and Xbox Live will offer savings for Fallout 4's base game and Season Pass, with discounts up to 67% off.

Continue here to read the full story.

Divinity: Original Sin 2 in September

Larian Studios announces a September 14th release date for Divinity: Original Sin 2, their upcoming RPG sequel. This will mark exactly one year of early access for the game, as the beta version launched on September 15, 2016. The news is accompanied by a new early access patch, and a new Kickstarter update video that offers a rambling nine-minute look at the new patch, showing off gameplay and building renovation. Here's word:

Larian Studios has announced that Divinity: Original Sin 2 will launch on September 14, 2017. Much larger than its highly-awarded predecessor, Divinity: Original Sin, the game gives players tabletop RPG-like freedom to complete quests and explore a world like no other. Divinity: Original Sin 2’s critically celebrated Game Master and PvP modes will also be available at launch, giving players a toolbox to create their own tabletop-style adventures, as well as arenas where they can compete in strategic multiplayer combat against each other.

Players can already purchase Divinity: Original Sin 2 on Steam for $44.99 and play the game’s first act in Early Access here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/435150/Divinity_Original_Sin_2/

To celebrate this announcement, Larian Studios is releasing a new Early Access patch, featuring two never-before-seen areas and a new companion relationship system. Character creation and crafting have also undergone a serious transformation, and players will finally have a first glimpse of the upcoming new origin story, a pirate dwarf named Beast. For more information on this patch and all it contains, check out a new Kickstarter Update video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tiWM2nuCTSQ.

Divinity: Original Sin 2 promises a darker and more expansive story than its predecessor. Set a thousand years after the original, Divinity: Original Sin 2 puts players in the role of a renegade user of forbidden magic. Our heroes will decide who will be the next god of Rivellon and what that god will do with its powers.

Continue here to read the full story.

Conarium in June

Publisher Iceberg Interactive and developer Zoetrope Interactive announce a June 6th release date for Conarium, their Lovecraft-inspired horror game. The game's official launch trailer accompanies the news, as does this overview of what to expect:

OVERVIEW
Conarium is a chilling Lovecraftian game, which follows a gripping story involving four scientists and their endeavor to challenge what we normally consider to be the ‘absolute’ limits of nature. Inspired by H.P. Lovecraft’s novella "At the Mountains of Madness", but largely set after the original story.

KEY FEATURES

  • A deep and suspenseful homage to H. P. Lovecraft with many secrets and Easter eggs.
  • Ominous but wonderful graphics created using the Unreal 4 engine.
  • Multiple endings.
  • A haunting and atmospheric soundtrack.

Continue here to read the full story.

Zombasite: Orc Schism Announced

Soldak Entertainment announces Orc Schism, the first expansion for Zombasite, their zombified action/RPG for Windows, macOS, and Linux. The plan is to release it this summer, though they will stick to their normal "when it's done" for a final determination on this. You can keep tabs on the project on the Zombasite site, and here are more details:

Soldak Entertainment today announced Zombasite: Orc Schism.

Zombasite: Orc Schism is the first expansion for the unique action RPG, Zombasite. This zombie apocalypse action RPG is set in a dynamic, evolving, fantasy world for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Long ago, when a necromancer attempted to raise Elves he thought to be dead, it went very wrong. Instead of raising an army of zombie slaves, a new race was born. The irate Orcs ripped the necromancer to shreds. Dormant necromancer magic has protected Orcs from zombie infection ever since, but the Zombasite, a zombie parasite, is intelligent. It has finally learned to break the defensive magic. The new infection swept through the entire Orc population like wildfire. Again it went very wrong. A war raged within each Orc between the Orc blood, the Zombasite, and the original Elven blood.

When the Orc blood won, a Dark Orc arose. With less Elven influence in their physiology, Dark Orcs’s aggressiveness and strength intensified, and they expanded their terrible savagery.

Continue here to read the full story.

Dead Alliance Announced

Maximum Games, Psyop, and IllFonic announce Dead Alliance, a competitive first-person shooter coming to Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 on August 29th. The Dead Alliance website is home to all this, offering a trailer that features some gameplay. The announcement includes details on the game and has word that preorders are already underway, with some perks for the advance commitment:

Leading publisher Maximum Games has announced Dead Alliance, an inventive take on zombie games and team-based first-person shooters expected to launch Aug. 29 on the PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One and Windows PC. Zombies in Dead Alliance are not just the enemy; they are weapons that can be strategically used to distract and destroy unsuspecting human foes in combat. Seize the dead – or find yourself counted among them.

Set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland where military bases are humanity’s last city-states, Dead Alliance pits warring teams of players against each other for survival in a world ravaged by the zombie plague. It features a variety of single-player and 4v4 multiplayer modes, including Team Deathmatch, Free for All, King of the Hill, and Capture and Hold, as well as the MOBA-inspired Attrition mode and Solo Survival mode.

Dead Alliance lets players customize and upgrade their loadouts with an arsenal of high-powered, military-grade weapons and advanced zombie-controlling tech called zMods. Examples of zMods include the Enrager – a pheromone bomb that turns a single zombie into a soldier of superior strength and resistance on your side – and the PAM grenade, which puts four zombies to work for you, but does not increase their damage resistance. Use these and many more zMods available in the game to get the undead to join forces with you!

Those who pre-order Dead Alliance for $39.99 will receive the “Rapid Dominance” Day One Edition of the game, which contains three bonus loadouts featuring unique weapons and perks for use in multiplayer. Pre-orders are available now at major retailers.

Continue here to read the full story.

Galactic Civilizations III: Crusade Ludicrous Update

Stardock is now offering the "Ludicrous update" for Galactic Civilizations III: Crusade, saying this fulfils the frequent fan request for larger maps in the 4X strategy expansion (though it sadly does not include ludicrous speed). The game supports maps up to 500x500 tiles large, though they warn that this is not for the faint of heart, or at least the faint of computer, as it requires "considerable CPU resources." The update also includes lots of improvements, balance updates, and bug fixes. The announcement has all the details:

Owners of the Crusade expansion pack to Stardock's best-selling space 4X strategy game, Galactic Civilizations III are receiving a major update today.

Dubbed the "Ludicrous" update, the new version replaces the largest sized galaxy option with a new one called "Ludicrous." This option doubles the maximum size over the previous biggest map size ("insane size") and includes a host of quality of life improvements, balance updates, bug fixes, and much more.

"Galactic Civilizations III already supported very large maps," said Brad Wardell, CEO of Stardock Entertainment. "But among the many improvements that the new Crusade expansion pack brings is a multi-core game AI which allows for much bigger galaxies to play, thanks to the drastically reduced turn-times."

In early May, Stardock released the critically acclaimed (87 metacritic) expansion that introduced citizens, spies, diplomats, privateers, interactive invasions, commanders, the civilization builder, three new civilizations, and much more. Fan response has been tremendous, and Stardock has channeled that into this update, which is filled with not just bigger map sizes, but dozens of important improvements across the game.
 
"The best way to describe Galactic Civilizations III: Crusade is that it is the answer to the mid-to-late game grind that 4X strategy games have struggled with for years," said Wardell. "With Crusade, we answer this with both features such as the new citizen system that allows players to execute powerful actions late game, as well as taking full advantage of the new, 64-bit, multi-core custom game engine that was made exclusively for creating space 4X games."

Continue here to read the full story.

Quake Champions Trailer

Bethesda.net offers a new trailer showing off Sorlag, another of the champions coming to Quake Champions, id's upcoming first-person shooter. Here's her introduction:

Trained from birth to hunt the warmbloods, Sorlag is the best there is at what she does. After her clan gorged themselves on the spoils of her work, the remains would be placed in a sacred bowel-bowl and used by the Haruspex to open terrifying windows to the Other Place. Sorlag’s people credited the Haruspex with their prosperity, and this infuriated the huntress.

Determined to subvert the authority of the Haruspex, Sorlag stole one of the warmbloods’ forcefield devices and made plans to topple his bowel-bowl and interrupt his ritual. Morning came, the ritual began, and all saw the Other Place – a twisted world, so unlike their own. Sorlag leapt with the device, but her claws had crossed the window. She watched the Haruspex’s sacred bowl fall as she was pulled into the Other Place.

Continue here to read the full story.

Worlds Adrift Closed Beta

Bossa Studios announces closed beta testing is now underway for Worlds Adrift, their upcoming physics-driven sandbox MMORPG. Another way of putting this is that they've soft-launched the game, since you can get access to the beta by buying one of their "Founder's Packs." This includes in-game items as well as beta access. You can pick up a pack on Steam, and if you're still on the fence they offer a cinematic introductory trailer and some details:

Bossa Studios today announced that Worlds Adrift, their upcoming sandbox MMO, has entered into limited closed beta. Following Surgeon Simulator and I am Bread, Worlds Adrift represents the acclaimed London-based studio’s most ambitious project to date. Built with Improbable SpatialOS technology, Bossa Studios is able to deliver a truly unique MMO with massive in-game scale & complexity. Players will team up to design and build their very own custom sky-ships piece by piece. They will be masters of their own destiny and take on the role they want such as scavengers, explorers or heroic captains of the skies in a vast open world with a scale and complexity that has never been achieved before in the MMO genre.

MMO newcomers and veterans alike will want to check out the brand new trailer to understand Bossa Studios’ unique vision and unique approach for Worlds Adrift.

Continue here to read the full story.

Kritika Online Closed Beta

Kritika Online is another MMOG offering paid early access to its closed beta testing by offering founder's packs. This is an upcoming free-to-play brawler from En Masse Entertainment, who note that there are also closed beta keys to be had through their website and some media partners. They say testing should run through June 13th, and they illustrate the news with a new story trailer. Here are more details:

En Masse Entertainment, a player-driven publisher focused on delivering great games and great service, today announced the beginning of their closed beta test for the upcoming, hyper-stylish action RPG Kritika Online. Starting today, players who have purchased a Founder’s Pack or those with a closed beta access code will be able to sign in with their En Masse account and begin playing an early version of ALLM’s free-to-play action MMO brawler. This closed beta will run through June 13, 2017.

The nonstop action of Kritika Online will be on full display in this closed beta, as players select from 4 character types — the Warrior, the Gunmage, the Rogue, or the Reaper — and rampage through the lavish 3D worlds solo or with friends, defeating bad guys and super-sized level bosses using oversized blades, alchemical superguns, and dazzling acrobatics. In addition to Kritika Online’s over-the-top action, the closed beta gives players their first hands-on look at the game’s deep progression systems and story. Check out the new story trailer for a deeper look inside the world of Kritika Online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uo7jMfc7paY

Players can get access to the closed beta by purchasing a Founder’s Pack or by acquiring a beta code from participating media partners.

Continue here to read the full story.

Quarantine Released

Quarantine is now available on Steam, offering a contagious Windows turn-based strategy game following a run on early access. You can find details and a launch trailer on the Quarantine website, and here is the announcement:

Quarantine has left Early Access and officially launched on Steam today. The riveting single-player game, developed by Sproing and published by 505 Games, enlists players to contain outbreaks and cure diseases in an effort to save the world from deadly outbreaks. First released through Steam’s Early Access program, the team at Sproing used the program to source feedback from players while the game was still in development. This allowed them to add and test new content and modes, like the workshop mode where players can create additional diseases. It also provided time to finetune gameplay mechanics to polish and improve the game before today’s official launch.

“For an independent developer, the Steam Early Access program is such a great tool,” said Harald Riegler, CEO Sproing. “Being able to get our game in front of players early on helped us finetune the experience and provided insight into what players wanted from a single-player strategy game. For our official launch, we’ve added new content based on that feedback, including several new diseases and the ability to name your own pathogens. We hope people will enjoy playing the game as much as we enjoyed working with the community to make it.”

In this immersive turn-based strategy game, players are enlisted as the director of Pandemic Defense, an international biosecurity agency, and must respond quickly to the onslaught of widespread, deadly contagions. When new pathogens arrive, every turn counts - survival rests in each player’s hands as they recruit a team of specialized operatives and deploy them on high-stakes missions across the globe. Time is of the essence as players research the disease, upgrade the tech and quarantine the outbreak before it infects —and kills— humanity.

Continue here to read the full story.

Micro Machines World Series Trailer

This trailer shows off "the thrill of the race" in Micro Machines World Series, the upcoming miniaturized racing remake. The clip shows off your bitty little cars going though their paces, car customization, combat, and atmospheric touches like a mini-copter observer and a playful dog obstacle. Here's a bit on the game's devotion to racing:

Racing has always been at the heart of Micro Machines, and Micro Machines World Series jolts that heartbeat back into action. With hundreds of customizations available, you can race in style and make sure you stand out on every race’s starting line. Chief Game Designer Gavin Cooper said, “For the first time in a Micro Machines game, every car has its own entirely distinct personality ... and arsenal. Each gives players a different way to play and enjoy the game, meaning fans of the series will have plenty to sink their teeth into.”

“Players will quickly gain an affinity with a particular vehicle and find it suits their style of play,” he continued. “You can master one vehicle collecting all the 25+ customizations, but then have a whole host of variety choosing and mastering all the other vehicles in the game.”

Each ride has a slightly different feel, and even sound, in Micro Machines World Series. Choose from 12 distinctly individual vehicles, from the twitchy-but-agile rear wheel drive hot rod of El Incendio to the scarily-good all-rounder monster truck of Hank N. Stein.

Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Interviews

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Bus Simulator 16 DLC and Gold Edition

Steam now offers a new MAN Lion's City CNG DLC pack for Bus Simulator 16 as well as a new Gold edition of the transportation sim that includes all its current DLC. This post has the details:

Great news: The MAN Lion's City CNG DLC gives players access to three officially licensed and faithfully recreated natural gas powered buses of the popular MAN Lion's City CNG series. The maneuverable two-door MAN Lion's City A 21 CNG is, with a length of 12 meters and offering 30 seats, perfectly suited for the winding alleyways of Sunny Springs’ city center. Fans of huge articulated buses can look forward to driving the 18.75 meters long MAN Lion's City A 40 GL CNG sporting 5 doors and 39 seats. The 14.6 meters long MAN Lion's City A 44 L CNG comes with three doors and 44 seats and counts as the game’s first real three-axle bus with a self-steering rear axle!

Tekken 7 Intro Video

Here's the opening cinematic for Tekken 7, paving the way for next week's release of the fighting sequel. The introduction to this is short and sweet: "The blood feud intensified, and the world was forced to take sides. Watch Tekken 7's official opening movie and get ready for the next battle in less than 10 days on June 2nd!" Continue here to read the full story.

Gold Rush! 2 for Linux and macOS

The Linux and macOS editions of Gold Rush! 2 are now available on Steam along with the previously release Windows version of the adventure sequel. Sunlight Games also announces that a boxed retail version of the game is coming on June 23rd, and will offer all three versions of the game with no DRM. This post has a brief update on the macOS and Linux releases: "After the release of Gold Rush! 2 for PC on Steam, the Mac and the Linux versions was also released in the last days. Both versions contain the update to 1.0.3 already!"

Total War: SHOGUN 2 and Fall of the Samurai for Linux

The promised release of the Linux editions of Total War: SHOGUN 2 and the Fall of the Samurai expansion are now available. These are available on the Feral Interactive website where they offer these details:

The time has come for a new shogun!

Command samurai, ninja and warrior monks in two spectacular Total War games featuring strategic gameplay inspired by the samurai code of honour.

Embark on an epic conquest across snowcapped mountains, hilltop citadels and fields of cherry blossom, by taking possession of Total War: SHOGUN 2 and Fall of the Samurai from the Feral Store.

TrackMania 2 Lagoon Demo on Steam

The TrackMania 2 Lagoon demo is also now offered on Steam (thanks Frans). This is also ManiaPlanet as mentioned in yesterday's news of Lagoon's release, but this will make it easier for some to check out. Here's their intro to the new gameplay:

Trackmania² Lagoon has players racing on raised tracks above a tropical island filled with insane activities.

It comes with a FREE Trackmania multiplayer channel, an exclusive solo campaign, a new game mode and a world of possibilities with user-generated content thanks to an upgraded Maniaplanet system increasing the creative power of players.

Like other TrackMania² games, TrackMania2 Lagoon is pure fun and simple, offering thrilling graphics and instant gameplay.

DiRT 4 Rallycross Trailer

A new trailer from DiRT 4 shows off some on-road racing for off-road sequel, "showcasing the game’s incredible rallycross content across various classes and circuits." Here's word on this game mode:

Rallycross is thrilling multicar, circuit racing on mixed surfaces made up of both dirt and asphalt. The short, quick-fire races take four to six laps and each car must complete at least one ‘Joker Lap’ which is longer than the traditional lap leading to tactical, enthralling wheel-to-wheel racing. Drivers compete in four qualifying races before the top drivers make the semifinals and final. The supercar class in the FIA World Rallycross Championship consists of 600bhp beasts that accelerate from 0-60mph in under 2 seconds – faster than a Formula One car.

Launching on PlayStation® 4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One, the all-in-one entertainment system by Microsoft, and Windows PC via Steam on June 6th, 2017 DiRT 4 challenges you to Be Fearless as you take the wheel of the world’s most iconic and powerful off-road vehicles. Featuring two different handling models, Gamer and Simulation, DiRT 4 offers both depth and accessibility for players old and new to the franchise. The game’s innovative Your Stage system allows you to produce a near infinite number of unique rally stages at the touch of a button.

Continue here to read the full story.

Dota 2 Client Improvements

The Dota 2 blog announces today's release of more fixes that cap a spate of improvements in client performance in Valve's MOBA. Here's the explanation:

No matter which aspect of Dota captures your interest, all players benefit from improvements in the performance of the game client. With that in mind, today’s update delivers multiple changes focused on providing smooth and consistent gameplay regardless of the hardware setup you’re running.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve released many small incremental updates aimed at improving client performance. In today’s update, we’re releasing many more fixes that will also improve overall performance and FPS stability. Specifically, low-end machines will see a higher peak frame rate, while high-end machines will experience improved frame-rate consistency, resulting in fewer performance dips.

PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS Patch Plans

An Early Access Month 2 Update for PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS has details on the next patch for the battle royale game (thanks Blahman). They say this will go live on the test server at some point today, and should go live for everyone tomorrow. They offer detailed patch notes for what's changing, and also touch on next month's update:

Next, another quick word about server performance. I have seen a lot of speculation about the cause of the lag some of you experience. One of the more popular theories is that we run our games on potato quality servers. I would like to put this theory to bed by telling you our servers run on the highest possible spec machines that AWS offer.

We are currently in the middle of profiling the servers to attempt to track down the cause of the lag, but as I have said before, this will take us time to complete, so I ask for your patience while we work to improve server performance for all players.

While next monthly update will be focused on improving server performance, the optimisation process won't stop there, and we will continue to improve performance of the servers all the way through Early Access.

Morning Crowdfunding Roundup

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

There's a new Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer 3 and an even better new International Trailer for the upcoming movie. The previous high point for the series for me was probably Spider-Man 2, but this looks like the proper MCU Spidey movie fans would wish for. If I had to quibble, I'd say I don't love the high-tech spider suit, but that certainly still makes sense. Definitely stoked for this one.

Webslinging Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Unfair Mario.
Story: Somebody From Chevy's 'Real People' Ads Spoke Out About The Experience. Thanks Devicer.
Science: Why Did The Biggest Whales Get So Big?
Ape that lived in Europe 7 million years ago could be human ancestor, controversial study suggests.
Media: Equality - Epic NPC Man - VLDL (video game logic).
The Only 8 Types of TV Shows That Get Made.
Auctions: Armstrong's moon-purse set for $4m bid-off.



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