Updated: Aug 28, 2016 11:11 am Eastern Daylight Time (GMT -04:00)
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Sunday, Aug 28, 2016

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Ubisoft F2P Game Shutdowns

Ubisoft is shutting down three free-to-play online games in October (thanks The Escapist). The publisher/developer has revealed plans to sunset Tom Clancy's Endwar and Might & Magic Duels of The Champions on October 31st. They also will retire The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot on October 25th, making an especially short run for this game that launched in February 2015, though early access began in late 2013. You'd expect this news on UbiBlog, but they are playing it more low-key than that, so the announcements are on the Tom Clancy's Endwar website, the Might & Magic Duels of The Champions website, and The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot website, respectively. Each post expresses sadness and regret, while also suggesting players spend their in-game space bux soon. Ubisoft also recently announced plans to close Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Phantoms, another F2P offering.

BioShock: The Collection Videos

New let's play videos from BioShock: The Collection show off the upcoming remaster of the shooter franchise (thanks Polygon). This clip is from the updated version of the original BioShock, showing over 13 minutes of gameplay starting from the very beginning. This is excerpted from an even longer clip showing more than 40 minutes of the game. This video is shorter, depicting seven-plus minutes from BioShock 2, and there is also a longer let's play from the sequel that's almost 40 minutes. There are also BioShock Infinite videos, but that game is not being remastered, so this looks how you recall it from way back in 2013. Besides the games, the collection will include a new documentary series on the creation of the series, as noted in the description:

All three BioShock games, complete with all single-player DLC, are fully remastered for current-gen consoles, in 1080p and up to 60 FPS, in BioShock: The Collection. Available September 13, 2016 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC (September 15 in Australia and September 16 internationally).

Coming with BioShock: The Collection, the never-before-seen video series, Imagining BioShock, takes you through the inspiration and creation of Rapture and its inhabitants. Play through the remastered version of BioShock to pick up golden reels and unlock the secrets behind Rapture. Watch the Imagining BioShock trailers here: http://2kgam.es/ImaginingBioShock 

Continue here to read the full story.

Steam Top 10

A mix of older and newer titles make up this week's list of the 10 bestselling titles on Steam:

  1. No Man's Sky
  2. Grand Theft Auto V
  3. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  4. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
  5. RimWorld
  6. Dead by Daylight
  7. Just Cause 3 XL
  8. F1 2016
  9. Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen
  10. Starbound

Sunday Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Class Warfare - The RPG-Fighting Game Hybrid by Studio Acetic — Kickstarter. "Class Warfare is the culmination of approximately three years of work to create a game that combines the satisfying action of a brawler/fighting game with the customization of a role playing game. Players will enter the land of Oppenwor, where tensions between six classes of soldiers threaten the peace amidst assassination plots and hidden conspiracies. War lurks on the horizon, but the enemy resides within. Unravel your purpose and what it truly means to be friend or foe." Also on Steam Greenlight. Thanks Gamer's Hell.

On Sale

  • Kerbal Space Program on Steam. Save 50%.

Gatherings & Competitions

Sunday Interviews

Sunday Previews

Sunday Metaverse

Sunday Tech Bits

Sunday Safety Dance

Sunday Legal Briefs

Game Reviews


Out of the Blue

I'm really looking forward to tonight's conclusion of The Night Of, HBO's miniseries that has been gripping from the start. This is an adaptation of a BBC series which is probably even better, but they have done a great job with it. The eight-episode format is why this feels like a breakthrough to me. It bridges the gap between a series and a movie, combining a film-like arc with TV series-style character development. I'll avoid rambling further to keep from spoiling this for anyone who hasn't watched, except to say you are missing out.

Gripping Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Link: Breathalyzer Vuvuzela.
Story: Big Food Is Probably Funding Your Favorite Foodie Startups.
Media: Mac King Shows Us A Rope Trick.
Cheeky McDonald's Drive Through.
Parrot and Guitarist - Beautiful Duet.
Follow-up: Lockheed Could “Fail to Deliver” F-35 Capabilities on Time.
The Funnies: Pokemon Woe - FoxTrot.
That which divides us… « EXTRALIFE.

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Saturday, Aug 27, 2016

The Division's Swedish Patch Mission

Ubisoft is intent on improving Tom Clancy's: The Division, and they are offering community members the chance to fly out to Sweden to help them do so (thanks VG247). They plan to select a few folks to spend a couple of days at Massive Entertainment to help make their upcoming version 1.4 patch "as valuable to our players as possible." They will pay travel expenses in exchange for contributions, as detailed below:

After the details surrounding Update 1.4 were announced yesterday, it’s now time to give you all a bit of extra insight as to how we’re going get there. We’ve said before that building and improving on our game is something that we want to do “with the community”, and in this case we mean that in the most literal sense.

In two weeks, we’ll be bringing people from the community to Massive in order to help make Patch 1.4 as valuable to our players as possible. This type of direct interaction between us on the development side and those of you that are out saving New York in The Division every day is definitely one of the key ways to improve the experience for all players. With that said, consider this a call for submissions; we’re looking for anyone within the community that wants to be a part of critical workshops and discussions at Massive in Malmö, Sweden. You don’t need to be a world famous YouTuber, gigantic streamer or podcast hero to be involved in this conversation either! If you play The Division, are willing to join us for a couple of days at Massive and are keen to speak up then we want to hear from you.

  • You’ll need to be available from September 7th – 9th
  • We’ll pay for the flights, hotel and food

We’re accepting submissions NOW. Fill out the form, let us know who you are and why you’d be a great candidate and we’ll see some of you in the studio very soon.

Halo 5: Forge PC Specs

Xbox Wire has release plans for Halo 5: Forge. They say the map tools for Halo 5: Guardians will come to Windows 10 on September 8th, though there are still no plans for a PC version of the game itself. They also offer details on how the release will change the shooter sequel for Xbox One players. Additionally, there's a post on the official Halo website with Forge system requirements and more details on the editor. Word is: "Halo 5: Forge is primed to bring Halo 5’s entire Forge level-creation experience to Windows 10 PCs, along with a suite of great new features, including full mouse and keyboard support, 4k resolution display capability, a brand new content browser to makes showcasing and sharing your creations easier than ever before, and the ability play your creations with friends online through custom games." Here are the system specifications, which include the exact version of Windows 10 Anniversary Edition, but neglect AMD details, leaving CPU estimates to the user and ignoring AMD graphics altogether:

OS: Windows 10 Anniversary Edition Version 1607 or later
DirectX: DirectX 12
CPU: Intel Core i5 at 2.3Ghz or AMD Equivalent
GPU: GeForce 650 Ti

OS: Windows 10 Anniversary Edition Version 1607 or later
DirectX: DirectX 12
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K at 3.4GHz or AMD Equivalent
GPU: GeForce 970

OS: Windows 10 Anniversary Edition Version 1607 or later
DirectX: DirectX 12
CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K at 3.4GHz or AMD Equivalent
GPU: GeForce 980 Ti

Saturday Patches

Saturday Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Fiery Disaster -- Steam Greenlight. "Here’s the story of Addyson - a scientist that has enraged the society with his daring invention. "Fiery Disaster" is a twist on a Tower Defense genre - instead of placing towers, you need to actively maximize your accuracy and shot efficiency. The game blends action and strategy, with a chunk of inspiration from board games." A playable demo is available.

Saturday Interviews

Saturday Consolidation

Saturday Mobilization

Saturday Metaverse

Saturday Tech Bits

Saturday Safety Dance

Saturday Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

Dang, it seems I missed noting National Dog Day yesterday. I missed this by one day last year as well. I guess I need to mark my calendar if the National Dog Day public relations department is going to continue to sleep on the job. Oh well, as I noted last time, every day is a doggie day here at the BlueTower, so on some level, we were still covered. Still, I guess there's time for a dog day afternoon here in the dog days of summer. Woof!

R.I.P.: Marvin Kaplan Dead: 'Alice' Actor Was 89.

Dogged Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Snake.is.
Link: The long and twisted tale of the Nibbler arcade game.
Story: City responds to alleged bait-and-trap towing scheme- 'We know we're not doing enough.' Thanks JDreyer.
Science: Jammed Cells Expose the Physics of Cancer.
Meet Octobot- Squishy, Adorable and Revolutionary. Thanks j.c.f.
Media: UnderWatched Ep 2 Bosstion.
Why you shouldn’t drive slowly in the left lane.
10 Weird Cat Behaviors Explained.
He's just the town dog.


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