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Friday, Feb 06, 2009 Happy Waitangi Day (New Zealand)


Far Cry 2 Hardcore Mode Plans

In Far Cry has some information from Ubisoft about a new "hardcore" setting to be added to all multiplayer modes in Far Cry 2 as of the next patch for the first-person shooter sequel. The mode will invoke a new increased damage model for all weapons, enemy names will disappear after the spawning invincibility period is over, and more. The update also mentions that weapons will be rebalanced under normal mode as well.

New Dystopia

As noted on the Dystopia Website, a new version 1.2 of this Source engine cyberpunk game is now available for free via Steam. The site offers a five minute video to show new and returning players what this game and the new version are all about. Additionally, their new player guide is updated to reflect the new version. Thanks Gavin.

Weekend Sales

A weekend sale is underway at the Impulse Driven Store, perhaps the most noteworthy bargain being Titan Quest, Iron Lore's action/RPG, which is $3.99 (thanks Tumbler). Meanwhile, over on Steam they're offering the Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Complete Pack for $19.99.

Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena Movie

The Comic Con 2009 trailer for Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena is online, offering a look at the Diesel-powered action game follow-up in the works at Starbreeze Studios. The clip is available from AtomicGamer and Gamer's Hell.

F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin Trailer

A new F.E.A.R. to F.E.A.R. 2 Trailer for F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin looks to bridge the game between the original project and Project Origin, discussing the stories from the previous and next installments in the shooter series. The clip includes gameplay footage and narration from designer Craig Hubbard. You can find the movie on AtomicGamer, FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and MyGameTrailers.

Battlestations: Pacific Video Diary

A new Battlestations: Pacific developer diary video highlights the authenticity in the upcoming World War II action/strategy sequel: "The latest entry explores the authenticity and new level of graphical realism of the game. From Japanese war plans to the detailed warships and airplanes, Eidos drops us into an epic war and shows us what it’s like to fight in the historically based US campaign and a historically possible Japanese campaign." The clip is posted on AtomicGamer, FileFront, and MyGameTrailers.

Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. Movies

Two new clips are available for Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X., the upcoming aerial combat game. There's an XP demonstration trailer showing how the game rewards your progress on AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, and MyGameTrailers. There's also a cockpit view movie showing some dogfighting with all the cockpit displays visible, available on AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, and MyGameTrailers.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen Movie

A movie from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen promotes the just-announced tie-in with the giant robot movie sequel. The cinematic clip is available on AtomicGamer, FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and MyGameTrailers.


The PROTOTYPE Interview on Crispy Gamer talks with Eric Holmes about PROTOTYPE, Radical Entertainment's upcoming open-world action game. They discuss the background that makes for a good prospective game developer, what makes a quality game, reviews, publisher pressure, his work on Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction and a Transformers comic book, and more.

Velvet Assassin Graphic Novel

SouthPeak Games announces a 15+ page Velvet Assassin graphic novel is being created by animation artist Peter Chung (Æon Flux) to accompany the release of the upcoming World War II stealth/action game. The novel will be available as an exclusive, limited-quantity bonus item to those who purchase the game at GameStop.

Evening Previews

Evening Screenshots

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Consolidation



Safety Dance

Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Thanks Mike Martinez.

Into the Black

Gearbox Software Testing

Gearbox Software is looking for folks in the Plano, TX area to help test out one of their upcoming games, saying: "Testers will be asked to participate in playing an unreleased title and give their feedback. They’ll be provided with some snacks and swag to remember their visit by!" Applicants should be over 18 years of age, and this page has all the details.

Grand Ages: Rome Demo

A playable demo for Grand Ages: Rome offers the chance to earn a laurel wreath in this 4X strategy game set in the heyday of the Roman Empire that's a sequel to Imperium Romanum. The demo offers two missions, "Bread and Circuses," geared towards construction, and "Legio VIII," which centers on combat, as well as a pair of tutorials. The demo is available via the Kalypso Media Forums, and although the related post is in German, the demo supports English, German, and French. In addition to the mirrors in the Kalypso forums, the demo is also mirrored on AtomicGamer,, FanGaming, FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and Strategy Informer.

Call of Duty: World at War Patch

The promised Call of Duty: World at War patch mentioned earlier today is now available for download. The new version 1.2 adds a daytime version of the Makin map, closed off a number of exploits, and addresses a few other bugs. The patch notes are on the game's forums, and the patch itself is available from, ActionTrip, AtomicGamer,, FanGaming, FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and Games On Net.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Activision announces Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, a tie-in with this year's Transformers movie sequel. The game is in development for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 at Luxoflux, the Windows version is being handled by port-meisters Beenox, the Wii and PS2 versions are coming from Krome Studios, and there are also mobile editions in the works. The announcement doesn't include a release date, but according to the IMDB, the movie is due on June 26. The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen Website is online, promising the release of a trailer at some point today. Here's a bit on gameplay:

The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen video game lets gamers step into the shoes of the AUTOBOTS or DECEPTICONS, select any available mission and pick from the largest, most diverse range of playable Transformers – each with their own distinct abilities and weaponry. Set in unique environments across the globe such as Cairo and Shanghai, the game allows players to instantly switch between vehicle and robot modes as they drive, fly, fight and blast their way through intense, pressure-packed levels. After engaging in single player action, players for the first time ever will be able to go online and battle friends in all-new multiplayer modes.

Call of Duty: World at War Patch Today

A post to the Call of Duty: World at War Forums offer a change list for a new version 1.2 patch for the World War II shooter that is supposed to be released today. A number of bug-fixes are in the works, and the update will also add a new multiplayer map, Makin Day, which is actually a new environment of an existing map, as it brings the light of day to the jungle combat of Makin. They also address what is not included: "We are aware that /record is not on this list, but are happy to say we’ve already begun working on a Patch 1.3 which will address /record. More details on that patch will emerge after the 1.2 release." Thanks JD.

SC WWII Pacific Theater Patch now offers a new patch to update Strategic Command WWII Pacific Theater to version 1.01. The new version of the World War II strategy game includes over 70 fixes and enhancements to the gamer and its editor. There is a warning that this will only work with the English-language edition of the game.

More WoW Plans

The World of Warcraft Forums have the second batch of upcoming class change highlights for World of Warcraft, following up on part one covering the Priest, the Rogue, and the Shaman. The new update reflect a partial list of planned changes for the Warlock, the Druid, and the Warrior. Blizzard promises an update soon with their plans for Hunters, Death Knights, Mages, and Paladins.

EVE Online Retail Bonuses

Eurogamer outlines the perks to be included in the upcoming retail boxed version of EVE Online, CCP's science fiction MMORPG. The bonuses, available to existing subscribers as well as newcomers, include a 60 day subscription, a special ship, a head start in faction standings, an insider career guide, and the ability to gift friends with extended VIP trials in the game that can earn bonus time if the friend subscribes. The boxed version is expected in stores next month.

This is Your Brain on Multiplayer

Ars Technica reports on a research study where MRI scans demonstrate different types of brain activity in a game player if they thought they were playing against a human opponent, rather than a computer. The study indicates that three areas of the brain are more engaged when the subjects thought they were playing against a human, an effect more pronounced in men than women. Here's some of the takeaway of the Ars author:

The human brain appears to try to parse the intentions of others by engaging its own decision-making process; in short, it appears to model another person's mind by seeing what it would do if it were in that other person's skull. The three areas of the brain that the authors identify are involved, in part, in making executive decisions for that brain's owner, in addition to evaluating other people's executive decisions. So, the fact that they're busier when a person thinks they're playing another human could also be interpreted as them focusing harder on an identical decision making process.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

I keep meaning to thank Hump for his warning the other day not to salt our new sidewalk, as I was easily talked out of this, since I had reservations about it to start with. He suggested sand, and we had some kitty litter we use to dry old paint cans out, and I was able to turn our skating rink of a walk into a much safer, if not particularly pretty, path. Luckily the weather has all the neighborhood cats indoors these days.

Littered Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.
Play: AcidBall.
Links: 20 Worst Foods of 2009. Thanks Boing Boing.
Stories: Man pulls out 13 of his own teeth with pliers 'because he couldn't find an NHS dentist'.
Fired exec: 'Starbucks saved my life'.
L-test hell for S Korean driver.
Science: Cured meats tied to childhood leukemia risk. Thanks Digg.
Science Found Wanting in Nation’s Crime Labs.
Images: Tetris Bricks Falling in an Alley.
LucasArts Posters in the style of movie posters. Thanks Kotaku.
AnnaTheRed's Best Geeky Bentos.
Media: Death Star Costs $15.6 Septillion, 1.4 Trillion Times the US Debt. Thanks nin.
Will It Blend? - Germany.
Are Reality Shows Setting Unrealistic Standards For Skanks? NSFW.
Follow-ups: George Carlin: The Long Goodbye.
Video: Revealing the technology of invisibility.
FEMA food kits may contain tainted peanut butter.

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