Archived News:

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Terminator Salvation Ships, Install Problems

Steam News announces the North American availability of the digitally distributed Terminator Salvation game, which should also now be available at North American retailers. Word is: "Terminator Salvation, the new third-person shooter that takes place two years before the events of the upcoming film, is now available for purchase on Steam in North America, and will be available soon in other regions." Unfortunately, this has not gone smoothly for everyone, as ValiantOne points the way to this forum thread where a number of users are reporting an Installshield installation error with the game, which some users have been unable to resolve, though a workaround has been posted that has worked for some.

Distant Guns Upgrade, Trial

The Distant Guns Page now offers online sales of the new version 1.5 edition of Distant Guns, which includes an upgrade to the new graphics engine from JUTLAND. There are three different versions of the game available for three different prices, and a paid upgrade for version 1.0, which is free to those who purchased it after September 30, 2008. They also offer a trial version, which can be unlocked to a full version with the purchase of a game key, and the trial download is mirrored on and Gamer's Hell.

Bombshell Beauties

A new Bombshell Beauties Website is live, dedicated to the nose art in Battlestations: Pacific, the recently released World War II action strategy sequel. The Flash site allows the creation of a customized pin-up girl to adorn one of four aircraft, harkening back to the original high-speed porn.

Into the Black

New TF2 Spy Weapon Revealed

The Day 6 Sniper/Spy update on the Team Fortress 2 Website introduces The Ambassador, a revolver for the Spy so big they say "put two wheels on this thing and it's a cannon." Here's the description of the new unlockable weapon for the Spy that's part of Thursday's Team Fortress 2 patch:
There are two sorts of men in this world: the sort with blood pouring out of a hole in their heads, and the sort holding the Ambassador. It has the ammo count of a revolver and the pinpoint accuracy of a sniper rifle, even at long range. (But remember, a gun that packs this much heat needs to cool off between shots, so make every shot count.)

With its rosewood grip and likeness of your enemy’s mother (please send photo) engraved on the barrel, the Ambassador is eight motherloving pounds of steel your enemies won’t want to negotiate with.

Zeno Clash Patched; Sequel Announced

ACE Team announces plans for Zeno Clash 2, a sequel to their recently released combat game. Accompanying the new game announcement is a patch automatically available via Steam for the original Zeno Clash with some changes and fixes, most notably the addition of Health and Time counters in Challenge Mode. If all that wasn't enough, a new post-release trailer for Zeno Clash is on the YouTube, and ACE Team says they are "still hard at work developing additional free DLC for Zeno Clash which will be released during the following weeks." Here's the announcement of the new game:
ACE Team is releasing a post launch Zeno Clash trailer to celebrate the announcement of ACE Team’s next project; Zeno Clash 2. The studio has begun planning the next game of the series which will continue the adventures of Ghat, who will struggle against new and old conflicts. Father Mother, the mysterious Golem and new characters will be making an appearance in the next title. The story will be set after the events that take place in the first game. ACE Team wants the next installment to be much larger in scope, so the new game will feature open ended gameplay with large explorable environments and RPG elements. The unique melee combat system that made the first game a success will also be expanded to feature even more brutal and engaging gameplay.

Dawn of War II Patched

The promised new patch for Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II is now automatically available via Steam, bringing Relic's far-future RTS sequel to version 1.3.2. The update includes a few balance tweaks and bug-fixes, and paves the way for a version 1.40 patch said to include "a balance update, new maps, and some awesome new features."

Warrior Epic Launches

True Games announces that Warrior Epic is now live, offering a subscription-free action/MMORPG set in a fantasy-themed world. With the beta concluded the game's item shop is now open, and here's word on the game:
Lead an army of warriors into the wilderness, recover ancient artifacts and fend off barbaric tribes carrying the wicked heritage of the warmongers of ancient times.

Warrior Epic is an action-packed free MMORPG set in a vibrant fantasy world. Take command of a variety of Warriors through solo, PvP, and multiplayer dungeon-raiding adventures.

Combine strategy with your battle skills through the unique Spirit System. Build up your party of adventurers in your own customized Warrior Hall.

Warrior Epic is free to download and play with lots of opportunities to enhance your characters, your Warrior Hall, and your game experience with micro-transactions.

WoW Patched

Though not yet announced on the World of Warcraft Community Site, a new update is now available for World of Warcraft to bring the MMORPG to version 3.1.2. What's new and different is described in the WoW Current Patch Notes. Among the changes in the new version is the addition of the new Equipment Manager, and there's a video tutorial on WorldofWar.Net outlining how that works. Manual downloads of the US PC patch are also found on AtomicGamer, FileFront, Gamer's Hell, and The Patches Scrolls, and some or all of the various other PC patches are mirrored on AtomicGamer, Gamer's Hell, and The Patches Scrolls.

Demigod Demo & DLC Plans

So what the hell happened? on Skinning the frog, the blog of Stardock's Brad "Frogboy" Wardell has the latest chapter in the saga of Demigod, the action/strategy game from Gas Powered Games that suffered a rocky launch. He recaps the connectivity problems, which he chalks up to one bad design decision and one architectural limitation, explains why these issues took three weeks to fix, and outlines plans to release a patch as early as today to support proxy servers. He also outlines some issues that remain, and what's being done about them, and concludes with a FAQ describing what is being done to compensate users for these woes, plans for a demo (which would probably be out already if they hadn't gotten caught up in fire-fighting), that two more Demigods are being prepared for release, and lessons learned from the whole debacle. He concludes with a frank assessment of the game:
You know the expected marketing answer. But my view is, the difficult launch definitely hurt the game. There’s no way around it. Besides upsetting a lot of people anxious for a good multiplayer game, you also have the fact that those early negative reviews are going to linger. 1UP promised to re-review the game when this mess is straightened out and so I’ll be talking to them this week about that. But still, Gamespot (6.5) and IGN (7.5) are going to linger. That’s the breaks. One could argue we released a game that wasn’t done (we thought it was done) and that’s what you get.

Now, that said, I do think long-term the game is in good shape. First, we will be putting a lot of effort to build the online community. Scheduled games, strong team and clan support, pro tournaments, matchmaker filtering (let people filter out people they don’t want to play) are all coming sooner rather than later. Those things will help immensely.

A lot of Demigod’s long-term success depends, in my opinion, on whether we’re able to “perfect” Demigod’s online experience before a viable alternative shows up. Right now, Demigod has the luxury of being one of the few modern RTS games that is so well suited to playing online. It also lucked out in that Atari doesn’t release it internationally until later this month which means a huge influx of new players.

Spore Galactic Adventures & Robot Chicken

A new SporeWTF Website is home to the Spore WTF news of the day, which is that the writers of Robot Chicken are turning the creativity shown in their Adult Swim series towards developing content for Spore Galactic Adventures. Word is: "To celebrate the launch of Spore Galactic Adventures, we teamed up with the writers of Robot Chicken to concoct some truly twisted missions. See what happens behind closed doors when we put the sickest minds in Hollywood and the sickest game in the universe in the same room. Then play their whacked out missions when Spore Galactic Adventures launches on June 23rd!"

FUEL Movie

A new FUEL movie is now available, unrelated to newly announced US fuel efficiency standards. The clip showing off multiplayer play from the upcoming racing game is posted on the FUEL Website and mirrored on ActionTrip, AtomicGamer, FileFront, and Gamer's Hell.

New ATI Catalyst Drivers

The ATI Graphics Drivers & Software Page leads the way to new version 9.5 Catalyst reference drivers for ATI accelerators. The new drivers were expected last week and delayed to yesterday before appearing today, and the problems getting them online may relate to the fact that the link to the patch notes is broken as of this writing, so for now there's no word on what's changed. Thanks Bill. Update: The release notes link now works, but points to the version 9.4 notes (d'oh!). ATI does send along word that the new drivers offer performance gains of up to 10% for both single GPU and CrossFireX configurations in Company of Heroes and BattleForge performance gains of up to 10% for ATI CrossFireX configurations.

New Fallout 3 DLC Confirmed

This press release announces plans for two new DLC releases for Fallout 3, Bethesda Softworks' action/RPG sequel. The announcement confirms previous indications that one of the packs will be Point Look, which will be released for PC and Xbox 360 late next month, while the other one is titled Mothership Zeta, planned for release in late July for PC and Xbox 360. Both will also come to the PS3 at a later date, as the announcement also includes news that the first three DLC packs are also heading to the PlayStation 3, as well as word on plans for all the DLC to eventually be released on discs at retail. Here's the deal:
19th May, 2009 - Bethesda Softworks Europe is today pleased to announce that Fallout® 3 downloadable content (DLC) is coming to PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system. We have been working on implementing it for a while and look forward to bringing it to PS3 gamers via the PlayStation Network. Operation: Anchorage will be released for PS3 in late June, followed by the release of The Pitt and Broken Steel 4-6 weeks apart. Release dates will be forthcoming.

In addition, a new update will be released for PS3 that will allow users to download and play the new DLC. The release date for that update will be announced at a later date.

There are also two new DLCs planned for all three platforms:

• Point Lookout – Explore a massive new swampland area filled with new quests and content.

• Mothership Zeta – The aliens have returned, and they’re pissed. Experience an alien abduction first hand and find out if you’re tough enough to survive.

Point Lookout will be available in late June for Xbox 360 and PC. Cost will be 800 Microsoft Points. It will be available through Xbox Live and Games for Windows Live. Point Lookout will be available on PS3 after the first three DLCs have been released.

Mothership Zeta is scheduled for release in late July for Xbox 360 and PC. Cost will be 800 Microsoft Points. It will be available through Xbox Live and Games for Windows Live. Mothership Zeta will be available on PS3 after Point Lookout.

Finally, new Fallout 3 products will be available at retail this year.

Fallout 3 Game Add-on Pack #1 includes The Pitt and Operation: Anchorage on a disc and will be available for Xbox 360 and PC on June 12th across Europe.

Fallout 3 Game Add-on Pack #2 includes Broken Steel and Point Lookout on a disc and will be available for Xbox 360 and PC in August across Europe.

A Fallout 3 Game of the Year edition will be available in October. It will include the original game plus all five add-ons for £39.99 / €59.99 for Xbox 360 and PS3, and £29.99 / €49.99 for PC.

Retail versions of the game add-on packs for PS3 will not be available and the DLC will only be available for download via PlayStation Network or with the Fallout 3 Game of the Year edition .

Blur PC Plans

A new press release from Activision and Bizarre Creations about Blur reveals that the PC is one of the target platforms for the upcoming racing game from the creators of the console-only Project Gotham Racing. The game is due for Windows, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 this fall, and will incorporate a back-end intended to promote the social gaming experience through the sharing of things like in-game movies, and word is: "This unique story-driving social network evolves dynamically as players compete in different races, make new friends, rivals and fans, and connect with other racers both in-game and in real life." The Blur Website is also announced in the release, though this is broken at the moment. Here's a bit from the announcement:
The game drops players into heart-pumping, electrified racing action with 20 cars on a track all targeting the finish line and battling each other as they trade paint and collect intense power-ups, including the ability to blast other cars out of the way with huge bursts of energy, boost their speed, and more.

While controlling photo realistic cars, gamers can use offensive and defensive attacks as they battle for the lead and careen through real-world track locations ranging from L.A. and San Francisco to the streets of Hackney, UK and the treacherous roads of Barcelona, Spain.

“We did our homework and saw a huge opportunity to move beyond traditional racers and create a game completely focused on making racing ‘fun’ again,” said Martyn Chudley, Creative Director, Bizarre Creations. “Blur delivers a new style of racing experience for all gamers, regardless of their experience, skill or genre preferences. Everything the player does, both in their cars and with their cars, is a dramatic adrenaline rush; it’s a real blast!”

Terminator Salvation Machinima

Halcyon Games, Warner Premiere, and Warner Bros. Digital Distribution announce Terminator Salvation: The Machinima Series, a six-part machinima movie series using GRIN's Terminator Salvation game to expand on the story of the Terminator series, which continues this week with the launch of the Terminator Salvation movie in theaters. There's a Terminator Machinima Trailer on IGN offering a sample, while the series itself is for sale on Amazon and iTunes as well as Xbox LIVE and the PlayStation Network. Word is: "Produced in association with McG, director of 'Terminator Salvation,' and Machinima Inc., this six part series utilizes real time computer animation generated from the 'Terminator Salvation' video game and is set against an original story written by Andy Shapiro and directed by Tor Helmstein. Fans follow 'Blair Williams' (voiced by Moon Bloodgood) on an action-packed journey that reveals the genesis of Blair William's involvement with John Connor's resistance unit two and a half years before the movie begins."

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat Site, Specs

The S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat Website went live last week, offering a home to the upcoming continuation of GSC Game World's shooter series. Included are four new screenshots and the game's system requirements:
Minimum System Requirements
    • Intel Pentium 4 2.0 Ghz / AMD XP 2200+
    • 512 MB RAM
    • 128 MB DirectX® 8.0 compatible card / nVIDIA® GeForce™ 5700 / ATI Radeon® 9600

Recommended System Requirements
    • Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 / AMD 64 X2 5600+
    • 2 GB RAM
    • 512 MB DirectX® 9.0c compatible card / nVIDIA® GeForce™ 9800 GTX / ATI Radeon® HD 4850

Assassin's Creed 2 Interview

There's an Assassin's Creed 2 Interview on PC where this German site fires up their universal translator for an English-language conversation with Sebastien Puel, producer on the upcoming action/stealth sequel. The conversation covers his background, the function of the Leonardo da Vinci flying machine in the game, new acrobatics, adding variety to missions, historical accuracy, the cliffhanger ending of the first game, the game engine, and more.

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