has follow-ups to comments recently attributed
to Ben Krasnow about plans for Steam
hardware. Ben says he was misquoted (or mistranslated) and that he did not confirm Linux support and he does not think they will be showing off anything of the sort this year as reported (thanks HARDOCP
). Meanwhile, there's an interview with Valve's Gabe Newell on The Verge
where the Valve honcho talks of how they are working with many hardware partners on "Good, Better," or "Best" boxes for playing Steam
games, and also goes ahead and says they will be releasing Linux-based "Steam boxes," among other things, also discussing their interest in low-latency controllers, biometric controllers, and other cutting edge-ness. This includes much discussion of open versus closed systems.
has details on the Razer Edge, a tablet PC with a gaming form-factor that will run Windows games natively under Windows 8. They expect this to start shipping this quarter, with base models priced at $999. Here's more on the system:
The Razer Edge is a 10.1-inch device being touted as the world's most powerful tablet, and a quick look inside both the base model and the souped-up Pro version show why. Both pack a third-generation Intel Core processor and a discrete Nvidia GT640M LE GPU. More specifically, the Razer Edge sports an Intel Core i5 CPU, 4GB RAM, and a 64GB SSD, and the Razer Edge Pro comes configured with a beefier Intel Core i7 CPU, 8GB RAM, and the option for either a 128GB or 256GB SSD. Both models feature a USB 3.0 port, and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, and both run on a full version of Windows 8 with Intel architecture, in turn allowing PC games to run natively on the Edge without the need to be ported or optimized.
Ironclad Games announces that Sins of a Dark Age
is now available in three different founder tiers, which grant immediate access to early closed beta testing of the fantasy strategy MOBA along with various other incentives. This page
has all the details on the $25.00 Rare edition, the $55.00 Epic edition, and the $125.00 Legendary edition, which come with different perks and different amounts of in-game currency. Here's word on the game:
Sins of a Dark Age continues to shake up the MOBA genre with game-changing Realm Quests, a powerful system that encapsulates the opportunities, risks and rewards of a living world by offering a wealth of new experiences and strategic choices. This pioneering system fuses RPG-like quests and their resultant opportunities into the intense framework of a competitive MOBA game. Imagine dealing with the threat of plague-infested vermin, welcoming the arrival of timely reinforcements, escorting a merchant convoy, racing to gain favor of a powerful ally or even working cooperatively with your enemy against a deadly common threat. Your team's ability to plan, strategize and adapt to a world alive with ever-changing opportunities is just as important as your ability to counter the enemy heroes and their hordes of minions.
With stunning visuals and development plans for competitive and cooperative experiences, leaderboards, replays, spectating and plenty of post-release content in the form of Heroes, Realm Quests, Maps and Skins; Sins of a Dark Age is the next evolution of MOBA.
Activision announces details about the Revolution DLC for Call of Duty: Black Ops II, saying this will initially be an Xbox 360 exclusive when it is released on January 29th, coyly saying other platforms will follow, but not specifying when. "With Black Ops II, the team set out to challenge assumptions about what fans should expect from Call of Duty, and there's no exception with Revolution," said Mark Lamia, Treyarch's Studio Head. "It starts with the massive amount of content that Revolution offers: four distinct multiplayer maps, an entirely new Zombies map and new Zombies mode, and a new bonus weapon. But quantity is just the start - it's the variety of new gameplay options in Revolution that sets it apart, making it our most compelling DLC offering to date, and a must-play experience for Call of Duty fans." Here's more of what to expect:
Continue here to read the full story
Revolution takes players to unexpected new locales the world over. "Downhill" is set in the ski country of the French Alps, where players fight their way down the slopes and through a ski lodge, while avoiding the moving hazards of the mountain's gondola system. Opponents must dodge the floodwaters in "Hydro" as they contend for dominance of this hydroelectric dam facility in Pakistan, filled with treacherous spillways. "Mirage" pits players in competition amidst the sand dunes of a dilapidated luxury resort in the sandstorm-devastated Gobi Desert, where a range of long-distance and close-quarters combat will mix up the action for all play styles. Finally, "Grind" transports players to the historic birthplace of skateboarding, California's Venice Beach, where they will battle it out through the ramps and half-pipes of this massive, epic skate park in a multiplayer environment comprised of unique curved architecture requiring players to adapt and learn new ways to take cover. Each map in Revolution delivers a uniquely exhilarating new landscape for tactics and battle.
Revolution also delivers a lethal bonus multiplayer weapon, the "Peacekeeper." This powerful SMG, accompanied by its own set of weapon challenges for additional XP, is unlocked to all Call of Duty: Black Ops II fans that pick-up Revolution.
has details on a new patch that's now automatically available for Ghost Recon: Future Soldier
to update Ubisoft's military shooter to version 1.6. The new version includes new content including night mode versions of a couple of maps and a new hardcore mode. This forum post
and this one
each have complaints from users saying that multiplayer issues remain in the new version, including word from some experiencing worsened connectivity issues following the patch. Thanks Charliebrownau.
A Best of Kickstarter 2012
feature has some eye-opening statistics on the year in videogame crowdsourcing. Word is 561,574 backers pledged $83,144,565 to 2,796 projects. Thanks nin via Kotaku
Ubisoft announces the Battled Hardened Pack
is now available for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 editions of Assassin's Creed III
, while this new multiplayer DLC will come to the Windows edition of the stealth/action series on January 15th. The pack is $4.99, or free to Season Pass
holders. Here are some screenshots
, showing off the three contained multiplayer characters ("the influential Governor, the ferocious Highlander and the fearsome Coyote Man") and three multiplayer (Charlestown, Fort St-Mathieu, and Saint Pierre).
WBIE, TT Games, The LEGO Group, Marvel Entertainment and a cast of thousands announce LEGO Marvel Super Heroes
, the next installment in the series of action video games combining LEGO toys with various other properties. This page
offers details on the game, which is planned for release this autumn (Northern Hemisphere) for Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and handhelds. Here's a bit:
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes complements the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes construction toy collection, which brings the characters, vehicles and action of Marvel’s renowned universe to the world of LEGO build-and-play adventure. There are currently eight iconic scenes from the X-Men, Iron Man and Spider-Man franchises available and more construction sets tied to the new Iron Man 3 feature film will launch later this spring.
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes offers an original storyline in which Nick Fury calls upon Iron Man, the Hulk, Thor, Spider-Man, Wolverine and other heroes spanning the Marvel Universe to save Earth from such threats as the vengeance of Loki and the hunger of Galactus, Devourer of the Worlds. LEGO and Marvel fans will enjoy classic LEGO videogame adventure and humor, while playing as their favorite Marvel characters.
now offers online sales of Replay Bundle Vol 1, which features some of the more popular titles from previous installments in this flexibly priced indie bundle series. Word is: "Back by popular demand - grab great titles that you may have missed the first time around! Included in this bundle are FPS and RTS hybrid experience Nuclear Dawn
, futuristic tower-defense game Defense Grid: The Awakening
, classic 2D adventure game Gemini Rue
, and two fast-paced dungeon adventures Soulcaster I
. Also included is a very special 56-track album bonus (a $20 value!) for those who pay $8 USD or their currency equivalent during this bundle, the 8 Bit Weapon Collection."
Steam News announces
the release of patch 3 for XCOM: Enemy Unknown
, updating the new installment in the turn-based strategy series with some bug fixes as well as new free DLC called Second Wave
. Here's word:
The XCOM: Enemy Unknown Second Wave content offers a series of advanced gameplay options that unlock a new level of depth, challenge and replayability. The Second Wave content includes:
- Damage Roulette: Weapons have a wider range of damage.
- New Economy: Randomized council member funding.
- Not Created Equally: Rookies will have random starting stats.
- Hidden Potential: As a soldier is promoted, stats increase randomly.
- Red Fog: Combat wounds will degrade the soldier’s mission stats.
- Absolutely Critical: A flanking shot guarantees a critical hit.
- The Greater Good: Psionics can only be learned from interrogating a psionic alien.
- Marathon: The game takes considerably longer to complete.
- Results Driven: A country offers less funding as its panic level increases.
- High Stakes: Random rewards for stopping alien abductions.
- Diminishing Returns: Increased cost of satellite construction.
- More Than Human: The psionic gift is extremely rare.
There are threads in the Diablo III Forums
about players exploiting the way vote kick mechanics work in Blizzard's action/RPG sequel to get other players killed, which is a particular problem in Hardcore
, where character death is permanent. A post by Blizzard
responds to this situation saying this unintended form of PvP griefiing will be addressed ASAP:
Ehhh. While the advice "don't play in Hardcore public games" may be valid in a number of situations, we recognize that this is a legitimate issue for Hardcore players and want to address it ASAP -- ideally in a way that doesn't impact co-op play (or impacts it as minimally as possible).
Right now, we're looking to remove the 10-second movement lockout whenever a Vote Kick is passed from both Hardcore and Normal modes. While we realize this solution may allow players to exploit the Vote Kick function to avoid death, it's not a very reliable survival technique and we feel that it's a better alternative than players losing a character they've invested a lot of time into due to griefing. We'll definitely be keeping on an eye on this, though, and will consider other solutions if necessary.
I don't know yet if this is something that can be addressed via hotfix; it may be a fix that we need to implement with a client-side patch. We're still working out the details, and I'll provide an update once there's any more info to share.
Paris-based developer Wizarbox (Risen, Grey Matter) filed for the French equivalent of bankruptcy last month, according to a report on Videogames Pockett
. The story quotes Wizarboss Fabien Bihour talking about the difficulty in getting game assignments from publishers and an unwillingness to pursue unprofitable iPhone development as factors in this, while also discussing hopes to get back on track after reorganizing by developing some serious games. Thanks Develop
has what details PC maker Xi3 is revealing about "Piston," a Steam
-optimized mini computer that seems to be the first blow in Valve's much discussed foray into gaming hardware. This is be a powerful little PC in a cool form factor, said to be based on its "performance level" X7A PC, a version of a modular PC that failed to achieve its Kickstarter
goals last year. This seems clearly aimed at the living room and Valve's "Big Picture" initiative.
Steam News announces
the release of three new DLC packs for F1 RACE STARS
, each adding a new track to the arcade racing game. These are a China Track
, an India Track
, and a Canada Track
, each of which is a whopping $4.99.
This press release
adds some clarity to how the IP assets of THQ will be sold off following the company's bankruptcy
and investor concerns
about how such a sale will be conducted. Yesterday a report
indicated these assets will be sold piecemeal at auction in two weeks, but the new announcement indicates that this will only happen if the combined bidding for all of them surpasses the Clearlake Capital Group's bid for the entire company.
A new mod on Skyrim Nexus
for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
called "Interesting NPCs" looks to make encounters with the AI populace of Bethesda's RPG sequel less like being trapped by a bore at a cocktail party. This is a work in progress, and here's how it's described: "This is a project to add color and life to Skyrim through three dimensional NPCs. Each character is integrated into the world, with a backstory and an extensive dialogue tree to explore. Many of these characters are fully voiced by a talented team of over 50 voice actors. The dialogue choices allow you to role-play, providing humor and depth to each conversation. You can be a jerk or a jester, a white knight or an assassin, as the most important character is you." Thanks Batman via Kotaku
I want to take this moment to wish Frans a very happy birthday, as I break with an unfortunate tradition and remember to do this on his actual birthday, rather than a day or two later. This gives me the opportunity to point out that Frans has remained vital to the operation of this site, serving as system administrator and tech guru, even though he also plies his trade elsewhere full-time. So, hearty huzza and kudos to our old friend, without whom you would not be reading these words! Happy Birthday Frans!
On a less significant note (for this site, at least), nin points out today is David Bowie's birthday, as he turns a startling 66, celebrating
with new music
that looks back at his experimental days with Eno in Berlin in the 1970s.
R.I.P.: ‘Snakes on a Plane’ director David R. Ellis dies at 60
Jeremie Passerin's LinkedIn Page
lists Dead Rising 3
as one of the items in the Blur Studio rigging supervisor's résumé. There are no details about a new installment in Capcom's survival/horror series other than that Jeremie worked on a "game cinematic" as a rigger at some point last year. Thanks nin via Joystiq
/All Games Beta
The promised update on Distressed Debt Investing
has the latest on efforts to liquidate the intellectual property assets of bankrupt
THQ following questions that emerged last week
about the proceedings. The latest is that properties will be sold off at auction individually on January 22nd, contradicting previous indications they would be sold as a bundle.
The World of Warcraft Website
now offers a teaser trailer
showing off the upcoming version 5.2 "Thunder King" update for World of Warcraft. Word is: "We’ve prepared a glimpse of the environments and denizens coming in the 5.2 patch, which is now available
on the PTR. Stay tuned for more development updates in the weeks ahead." Continue here to read the full story
Wall Street Journal
talks with Telltale CEO Dan Connors about their episodic game based on The Walking Dead
. He tells them more than 8.5 million episodes have been purchased, leading them to estimate this generating about $40 million, which is undoubtedly high, as it's based on the single episode price and does not account for discounts. Interestingly, he says about a quarter of the sales for the game were for iOS, showing the rapid growth of Apple's devices as gaming platforms. Thanks GameSpot
The Toronto Sun
talks with director Guillermo del Toro about his Pacific Rim trailer and how he sought Valve's permission for the movie's homage to Portal's GlaDOS. The also ask about inSANE, his planned horror game trilogy that was cancelled
this past summer. In November
word emerged that the project still lives, and here's the latest from del Toro on its status: "We are in talks with a very, very big company. I can’t say who, but it’s one of the big ones. They really responded to the game, they responded to what we were trying," he told the paper. "Some of the devices of the game I need to update, because now I’ve seen them in other games that just came out. That always happens. But the principle we’re trying to do with the game is to make it a really immersive narrative experience. It’s still a really challenging proposal." Thanks Joystiq.
Link of the Day: Horrible Job Interview
. Thanks Ant
The DayZ Blog
has an update on the planned standalone game based on the popular Day Z
modification for Arma II
, Bohemia Interactive's military first-person shooter. Admitting defeat of the original plan to release the game before the end of 2012, the update discusses what they still have to work on before the game is done, saying they will release a closed test for 500-1000 testers "imminently," noting this "will be focused purely on architecture, not the game design." They say following the test they will reschedule the game's release. Thanks MajorD.
NVIDIA unveils Project Shield
, a handheld android gaming device powered by a 72-core NVIDIA GeForce GPU/Quad-core A15 CPU. This will include support for playing PC games on NVIDIA-powered systems as well, as outlined on this page
Project SHIELD gives you the power to wirelessly access your GeForce® GTX-powered computer from the comfort of your couch. Play your favorite PC games, including great titles from Steam, on a full-size game controller with ultra-low latency thanks to Project SHIELD's game-speed Wi-Fi and the fast performance of GeForce GTX 600 GPUs.
NVIDIA GRID, their own entry into the cloud computing area, saying they are "building on a unique legacy in gaming graphics and graphic performance to lead the way" in this area pioneered by Gaikai and OnLive. This page
has further details, claiming their implementation will allow more concurrent users per server, lower latency, and better game content. Here's an overview: "NVIDIA GRID leverages some of this same technology to render and stream games from the cloud, with thousands of engineers dedicated to creating the ultimate system for service operators. Think of it as a gaming supercomputer in the cloud, built by NVIDIA."
Blizzard Entertainment will release an official Ubuntu port of one of "at least one" of their games this year reports Phoronix
. This report on plans for Linux support is unconfirmed, though the author of the report says this was learned from "a reliable source at the company," and that this was "backed up by additional proof." They say this internal port will be an attempt to gauge the commercial potential for supporting the operating system. Thanks Ant
offers a redesigned listing of the 20 bestselling full-price PC entertainment titles in the U.K. for the week ending January 5. The new boss is the same as the old boss, as the chart remained unsurprisingly static through the holidays. The all-platforms top 40
is similarly familiar. And remember, a déjà vu is usually a glitch in the Matrix. It happens when they change something.
I see a lot of criticism of the Redskins for sending RG3 out to play in the playoffs yesterday after reinjuring his knee. It's easy to Monday morning quarterback, but Mike Shanahan deserves a break from the hammering he's taking over this. I mean it's not like he send a blind guy out on the football field where he'd be unable to defend himself. You save something that drastic for the Super Bowl