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Tuesday, Oct 11, 2011


PC Sonic Generations Confirmed; Will Use Steamworks

The SEGA Blog confirms the reveleation from yesterday of plans for a Windows PC edition of Sonic Generations, their platformer sequel, announcing that this will use Steamworks:

It’s been the best-kept secret* in gaming this year, but we’re delighted to (finally!) confirm that Sonic Generations will be released on PC and available via SEGA’s partners for PC digital download in November this year. Sonic Generations is the ultimate celebration of 20 years of Sonic the Hedgehog and sees SEGA’s iconic mascot racing through a brand new adventure as both the much loved classic 1991 character, and the modern day video game hero he has become today.

Sonic Generations for PC digital includes Steamworks features such as Steam Cloud, which allows save files to be stored on Steam’s servers so you can resume your game progress from any PC. As with the other console platforms, Sonic Generations will be available to play in full stereoscopic 3D and will contain Achievements and online leaderboards. The PC version will also support resolutions up to 1080p.

Sonic Generations will be available via PC digital download as well as Xbox 360 and PlayStation3 on November 1st in North America and November 4th in Europe. There will also be a boxed version of the PC version available only in Europe later in November.

*this is sarcasm.

Dragon Age II DLC Released; Web Series Begins

BioWare now offers the new Mark of the Assassin DLC for Dragon Age II, BioWare's RPG sequel. Word is: "In this gripping new story, Hawke is joined by a mysterious elf assassin, Tallis. Voiced by none other than actress Felicia Day, this new party member comes complete with her own unique combat style and intriguing back story. With Tallis at your side, you must Infiltrate an Orlesian estate outside Kirkwall and steal a precious relic. Along the way, you will uncover an array of impressive weapons and equipment, and confront fearsome and challenging new enemies on your journey to claim the Heart of the Many." They are also offering a social media contest in cooperation with the aforementioned Felicia Day, and also now offer Episode 1 of Dragon Age: Redemption - Tallis, kicking off the promised web-series based on the DLC and the game. Continue here to read the full story.

Ships Ahoy - Dead Rising 2: Off the Record

Capcom-Unity announces the release of Dead Rising 2: Off the Record in stores, and via digital distribution for the PC edition of the zombie sequel. They offer this launch trailer and the following word:

Frank West returns! If you wondered how he would've dealt with the Fortune City outbreak (and thank you for asking), Off the Record offers this alternate tale of "what would have happened" had West been on the scene. Hop inside for links to the various PC retailers who have the game prepped for download, plus the launch trailer...

If you're like me and prefer to take a horse and buggy into town to buy your games, OTR is on shelves now. However, if you're down with this newfangled internet, the PC version is live at the following places: Amazon, D2D (US and UK), GamersGate, GameTap and Steam

In addition to general improvements over DR2 (loading, checkpoints, photography points etc), there's also a whole new sandbox mode that lets you explore pump up West without sacrificing progress in the main story.

Ships Ahoy - Disciples III - Resurrection

Steam News announces the release of Disciples III - Resurrection, the latest installment in Akella's grand strategy series. Word is:

This is a new landmark in the history of Nevendaar, when a new race ascends to power – the ruthless and merciless Undead Hordes. It is the story of selfless love and unfading glory. Heroes of the past, who had lost their lives, but not their sentience, are exacting their revenge in the name of Mortis, the Goddess of Death.

The Baconing DLC

Steam News announces the availability of Roesha, new DLC for The Baconing. Here's word:

Roesha, new dowloadable content for The Baconing is now available on Steam and is 50% off until October 18th at 10AM Pacific Time !

A 70's era inspired police woman with a nasty attitude and an over-sized pistol. Roesha gets results! When her gun is simply not enough she calls on her electric disco ball to take down a big crowd (watch them dance!). She can also fire First Aid shells at DeathSpank to heal her crime-fighting partner. And when she taunts, get ready for a Charlie's Angel inspired pose and some Roesha attitude. She is One Bad Mutha

Might & Magic Heroes VI Preloads

Steam News announces they are commencing preloads of Might & Magic Heroes VI for those who have pre-purchased Blackhole's new installment in the fantasy-themed Turn-based strategy series. The game is slated to go live in all territories on Thursday.

New Via Digital Distribution

CNET has word that Amazon will begin offering online sales and digital distribution of PC games as early as this week. Word is: "Akin to other digital download providers, Amazon will offer bonus items that often come with preordered games these days, such as extra maps, weapons, and other miscellaneous items."

On Sale

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Previews

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: The Avengers Movie Trailer. Thanks nin and Neutronbeam.

Dragon Age II Web Series Begins

BioWare now offers the new Mark of the Assassin DLC for Dragon Age II, BioWare's RPG sequel. Word is: "In this gripping new story, Hawke is joined by a mysterious elf assassin, Tallis. Voiced by none other than actress Felicia Day, this new party member comes complete with her own unique combat style and intriguing back story. With Tallis at your side, you must Infiltrate an Orlesian estate outside Kirkwall and steal a precious relic. Along the way, you will uncover an array of impressive weapons and equipment, and confront fearsome and challenging new enemies on your journey to claim the Heart of the Many." They are also offering a social media contest in cooperation with the aforementioned Felicia Day, and also now offer Episode 1 of Dragon Age: Redemption - Tallis, kicking off the promised web-series based on the DLC and the game. Continue here to read the full story.

WoW Real Money Trading

Blizzard has introduced a method for trading real cash for World of Warcraft gold, albeit in a roundabout way. As noted on Rock, Paper, Shotgun, a new Guardian Cub is to be offered as a cosmetic pet in the MMORPG, but unlike similar items in the game, this does not bind to your account unless you choose to use it, meaning you can buy it for cash and trade it or sell it at the auction house for whatever amount of gold it will bring. In the related FAQ, they say they are comfortable with the economic implications of all this:

While our goal is to offer players alternative ways to add a Pet Store pet to their collection, we’re ok with it if some players choose to use the Guardian Cub as a safe and secure way to try to acquire a little extra in-game gold without turning to third-party gold-selling services. However, please keep in mind that there's never any guarantee that someone will purchase what you put up for sale in the auction house, or how much they'll pay for it. Also, it’s important to note that we take a firm stance against buying gold from outside sources because in most cases, the gold these companies offer has been stolen from compromised accounts. (You can read more about our stance here.) While some players might be able to acquire some extra gold by putting the Guardian Cub in the auction house, that’s preferable to players contributing to the gold-selling “black market” and account theft.

Steamships Ahoy - Orcs Must Die!

Steam News announces that Stem now offers Orcs Must Die!, the action/strategy hybrid from Robot Entertainment. They are also offering a little leeway on getting in on the game's preorder bonus, saying customers can still receive the "Knight of the Order" costume if they purchase by 8:00 am Pacific Time tomorrow. A recently released playable demo provides the chance for a sample, and here's word on the game:

As a powerful War Mage with dozens of deadly weapons, spells, and traps at your fingertips, defend twenty-four fortresses from a rampaging mob of beastly enemies, including ogres, hellbats, and of course, a whole bunch of ugly orcs. Battle your enemies through a story-based campaign across multiple difficulty levels, including brutal Nightmare mode!

Ships Ahoy - Duke Nukem Forever: Hail to the Icons

2K Games announces the release of the Hail to the Icons Parody Pack for Duke Nukem Forever, DLC that sends up some other games while adding new gameplay modes and weapons to Gearbox's first-person shooter revival. The pack is $9.99 USD/800 MS points, but it is also offered free to the early adopters in the Duke Nukem Forever First Access Club. They are also kicking off a reward for what could be called the Duke Nukem Forever Last Access Club, as the DLC is now bundled with the full game for $29.99.

Mass Effect 3 Co-Op Support Detailed

The BioWare Social Network outlines how the just confirmed multiplayer support will work in Mass Effect 3, BioWare's upcoming action/RPG sequel. The post describes four-player co-op support and offers a FAQ explaining the reasoning behind the move. Here's word:

Today BioWare and the Mass Effect 3 team are very pleased to announce 4 player co-op multiplayer missions and the Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War system for Mass Effect 3 on the PC, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.

4 player co-op multiplayer

Join your friends in the all-out galactic war to take Earth back. The universe of Mass Effect expands with the addition of new co-op multiplayer missions, playable over Xbox Live, PSN and PC internet. Players can choose from a variety of classes and races, form an elite Special Forces squad, and combine their weapons, powers and abilities to devastating effect as they fight together to liberate key territories from enemy control. Success in multi-player will have a direct impact on the outcome of the single player campaign, giving players an alternative method of achieving ultimate victory against the greatest threat mankind – and the entire galaxy – has ever faced.

Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War

As a bonus to the campaign, BioWare is introducing the Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War system, a new way for players to manage and experience the galactic war from multiple fronts, including a new 4-player co-op mode. The key to saving the galaxy is the “Galactic Readiness” level, measured by Commander Sheppard's ability to apply every possible asset – people, weapons, resources, armies, fleets – in the final battle against the Reapers. Players can impact their game’s Galactic Readiness level in multiple ways via the Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War system, including multiplayer. Other platforms and interfaces will be announced in the coming months. It is important to note that the system is entirely optional and just another way players can have control over your game experience – it is still possible to achieve the optimal, complete ending of the game in Mass Effect 3 through single-player alone.

ITV Arma2 Incident Investigated

The has word that Ofcom is investigating the recent incident where an ITV Documentary used a trailer from Arma2 under the guise of real terrorism footage. ITV blamed this on "human error," and Ofcom, the "independent regulator and competitive authority for the UK communications industries," is launching an investigation "to see whether the incident constituted a breach of its broadcasting code."

Deus Ex: Human Revolution Soundtrack; The Missing Link Trailer now offers preorders of the original soundtrack for Deus Ex: Human Revolution, saying the music from Eidos Montreal's action/RPG prequel will be released on November 15 (thanks nin). Also, a new trailer from Deus Ex: Human Revolution - The Missing Link offers a look at the upcoming DLC for the game, narrated by game designer Antoine Thisdale. Word is: "this walkthrough of The Missing Link offers a deeper look at the gameplay. After a perilous escape from his Belltower captors, Adam Jensen manages to escape the cargo ship on which he is trapped. What he doesn’t know yet is that the ship has docked onto a secret Belltower seabase. He will have to uncover this base’s deepest secrets if he hopes to make it out alive." Continue here to read the full story.

The Lord of the Rings Online: Mithril Edition Announced

The Lord of the Rings Online Website reveals The Lord of the Rings Online: Mithril Edition, a new version of Turbine's fantasy-themed MMORPG with a load of bonuses to fit the game's free-to-play business model (thanks Gamer's Hell). This page offers a "buy it now" link, but this leads to here where is says this is coming soon. Here's what the $29.99 bundle includes:

  • Exclusive Steed of the Horse-lords Mount
  • 2000 Turbine Points to spend in Middle-earth
  • Path of the Fellowship Bonus Quests
  • Game Disks, Starter Guide, and Keyboard map
  • No monthly fees required

Diablo III Collector's Edition Revealed has a BBFC rating from over the summer revealing plans for a Diablo III Collector's Edition, as it rates the cinematics DVD from the CE. There's not much of interest there, though the listing says this was due on December 7, which may have been its planned release date before the game's recent delay into 2012.

Crusader Kings II Closed Beta

Paradox Interactive announces closed beta test is about to commence for Crusader Kings II, the upcoming strategy/RPG sequel. There's still time to sign up as a tester between now and October 17th, and those who are selected will be by October 24th. Here's word:

Crusader Kings II is created by the development team behind the Europa Universalis, Hearts of Iron and Victoria series. In Crusader Kings II you must rule with an iron fist and win the hearts of your subjects through fear, or lead a nation through respect and loyalty—the choice is yours. Keep your alliances close, your blades sharp and your wits about you at all times - for you will need them. Sacking an army takes strength. Ruling an entire nation takes a true leader. Do you have what it takes to become a Crusader King?

Humble Bundle Makes $1M

The Humble Frozen Synapse Bundle Website now shows the latest Humble Bundle has raked in $1 million USD from gamers who were allowed to pick their own price for the bundle. As of this writing, the Frozen Synapse Bundle has taken in $1,003,496.07 on 212,308 purchases.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Patched

Steam News announces a new patch is now available for Call of Duty: Black Ops (thanks Bill). Here's word on what this changes in the military shooter sequel:

  • Addressed various Zombie Moon map exploits and glitches
  • The “They are going THROUGH!” achievement now properly unlocks in Steam when player kills more than five zombies with the Gersh device
  • The Zombie Moon Leaderboard scores will not be overwritten with the newest stats if the stats are lower compared to the previous ones
  • "Mule Kick” perk machine is now available on all Zombie maps
  • Mods: Increased menu asset limit

MineCraft Release Plans: Weekly Prerelease Versions & Dragon

The Word of Notch details the run-up to the full release of Minecraft next month, outlining plans for weekly prerelease versions for advanced users, and saying there be dragons:

The adventure update is going great! We’re adding features and cramming in content, and then started feature creeping and content creeping. What we’ve got on our hands now is somewhere in between a finished Adventure Mode update and a version of the game we’d be proud to call just “Minecraft”. Not “Minecraft Beta” or “Minecraft Alpha”, but just plain and simple “Minecraft”.

And we’re going to release that version of the game live on stage in Vegas at MineCon! Woooo!

Up until then, instead of trying to squeeze in another real release, we’re going to do weekly (or so) pre releases, aimed at advanced players. We release these via twitter, so make sure to follow me (@notch) and Jens (@jeb_) if you’re interested in those.

Also, we’re finally adding a dragon.

Crysis 2 Texture Mod

A new version 3.0 of the MaLDoHD Modificiation for Crysis 2 is now available, offering a visual upgrade for Crytek's first-person shooter sequel. There's no concise "about" section to explain the mod, but this recent batch of screenshots offers a look at what it does. Thanks Patrick.

Orcs Must Die! Interview

A very short interview on Light Speed Gaming chats with Justin Korthof, community manager at Robot Entertainment, who answers four questions about Orcs Must Die!, the action/strategy combo. Topics include their response to early positive reviews, whether the action/tower defense hybrid is becoming a full-fledged genre, their lack of plans for DLC at this point, and more.

Morning Previews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

I am still only semi-recovered from all the food we consumed over the weekend. We had guests staying with us last week which tends to provoke a lot of eating out to start with, and we capped the over-indulgence with a big cookout on Saturday. You hear advertisements all spring about getting back into beach shape, I guess we simply did the converse, and kicked off the fall with an effort at getting back into couch shape.

Shapely Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez and Acleacius.
Play: Kick the Block.
Ad Bellvm.
Links: What You Think You Sound Like Online vs. What You Actually Sound Like Online.
Stories: Row over photo in shopping centre. Thanks Slashdot.
Science: 20 Things You Didn't Know About... Fire. Thanks Neatorama.
Images: Cosplay Corner.
Media: Evan Van Der Spuy, South African Cyclist, Hit By Antelope While Mountain Biking.
Real-Life Superhero Arrest of the Day.
Woz's $2 bill sheets. Crazy like a fox.... that's crazy.
Auction: Nicolas Cage's Action Comics #1 To Become The First $2,000,000 Comic? Thanks TDW Geeks.
The Funnies: Humorous Tweets.
If my brain was an imaginary friend - The Oatmeal.

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