A This recent article
follows on news from last year
of a possible legal battle over the inability to resell games bought via Steam, which conflicts with a recent EU legal ruling. Word is the VZBV
has filed a complaint in a Berlin district court over this. GameSpot
has a response from Valve to this, as the company says it has not received a formal notice about his. "We are aware of the press release about the lawsuit filed by the VZBV, but we have not yet seen the actual complaint," Valve said. "That said, we understand the complaint is somehow regarding the transferability of Steam accounts, despite the fact that this issue has already been ruled upon favorably to Valve in a prior case between Valve and the VZBV by the German supreme court. For now, we are continuing to extend the Steam services to gamers in Germany and around the world."
Double Fine announces
, Amnesia Fortnight 2012
, a collection of all five Amnesia Fortnight prototypes created during their annual prototyping project late last year
. There will be boxed (autographed copies available) and downloadable versions of the package, which comprises Spacebase DF-9
, Hack 'n' Slash
, Black Lake
, and White Birch
along with a couple of other prototypes, two documentaries, and a soundtrack. This trailer
introduces the whole shebang. Thanks Joystiq
Focus Home Interactive announces Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments
, a new installment in their series of games based on the consulting detective. The previous game in the series, The Testament of Sherlock Holmes, marked a switch from a point-and-click interface, and the new game switches from their proprietary game engine to Epic's Unreal Engine 3. These screenshots
show off the new look of the game, which is coming to PCs and consoles at an unannounced future date, and here's more on how it departs from their previous Sherlock Holmes games:
Unlike the previous adventures of Sherlock Holmes, in Crimes and Punishments you will not be a mere spectator during the detective’s investigation. It is now your turn to truly become Sherlock Holmes and lead your own investigation--actually, your investigations, as 8 captivating cases await you! Murders, disappearances, spectacular thefts, and other investigations will bring you to the cutting edge of the detective genre and these cases will be the bread and butter of this game, written in the pure tradition of Conan Doyle’s novels. Each case offers real freedom to players, who will have to make important moral choices instead of simply enforcing justice by the book. All decisions have an influence in the game and affect your character’s reputation in addition to having realistic, sometimes unexpected, consequences. You will have to bear the weight of your choices, as Crimes and Punishments offers an exciting system of actions/consequences that forces players to think before acting by giving true depth to every decision they make.
In Crimes and Punishments, players will embody a Sherlock Holmes with a brand new look. Developers at Frogwares have abandoned the classic Sherlock Holmes inspired by the 60s Sherlock movies, replacing him with a more modern character perfectly matching the new artistic ambitions of the title.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun
notes an interesting segment in the Gabe Newell video interview
mentioned earlier today
. About 44 minutes in Gabe discusses the way Valve acts as a bottleneck in the process of getting games published on the service, and he envisions a future where anyone can self publish on Steam: "OK if we are thinking about this correctly, it really should be sort of a network API.," he explains. "There should be this publishing model – and yes you have to worry about viruses and malware and stuff like that – but essentially anybody should be able to publish anything through Steam."
- 20 Awesome Games on GOG.com. Save 60%.
- DIVO on Steam. Save 10%.
- Prototype 2 on Steam. Save 60%.
The Dirty Bomb Founder's Club
is now accepting members, offering access to the closed alpha testing of Dirty Bomb
for those willing to commit in advance to Splash Damage's upcoming multiplayer combat game. They offer three tiers of membership, though only the as-much-as-two-games $120.00 level (said to be a $170.00 value) will get immediate access, while the $30.00 ($50.00 value) and $60 ($115 value) tiers are promised "priority access" to alpha and beta testing. Here's the pitch:
Dirty Bomb is a brand-new multiplayer combat game made for PC.
We have always believed that multiplayer is more thrilling than single player. We’re dedicated to the perfection of team play. We are committed to developing games that our fans can enjoy for months and years.
We’ve taken the unprecedented step of opening up Dirty Bomb’s alpha for private testing by fans. Sign up now to help shape Dirty Bomb!
The Patch Notes
for the upcoming version 1.07 patch for Diablo III
have a few more new entries showing changes implemented yesterday on the Public Test Realm for Blizzard's upcoming action/RPG. This overhauls how damage is added to items by socketing any ruby, not just the higher quality gems. This is explained in this separate post
discussing a bug in how "black" damage is calculated that isn't being addressed, and how this changes the impact of socketing rubies, which is being changed. They are also reducing the cost of repairing items with Marquise gems and have improved the visual effect of the Reflects Damage affix.
CD Projekt RED offers new details on REDengine3, the latest installment of their game engine which will power Cyberpunk 2077 and another unnamed project (presumably the one they will announce on February 5th
). They supply a screenshot
of a non science-fiction environment (The Witcher 3
?), and here's a bit on the new engine:
The REDengine 3 tech is tailor-made to create non-linear and story-driven RPGs with a system that allows to stream and handle fully explorable open-worlds. Cyberpunk 2077, the second project the studio is working on, will have prime examples demonstrating that REDengine 3 is the perfect tool for creating immense universes filled with exciting, nonlinear adventures. The advanced technology of the REDengine 3 makes RPGs comparable to top-shelf shooters, both in terms of game-world presentation and the epic proportions of events that the player is drawn into. The engine is a next-gen-ready solution that begins to blur the line between pre-rendered CGI movies and real time rendered graphics, bringing us closer to the most life-like world ever created in video games. All the state-of-the-art visuals form a living ecosystem allowing the player to be a part of a vivid environment. The new face and body-animation systems implemented in REDengine 3 offer realistic expression of emotions, movie-quality scenes and character interactions.
The technology uses high-dynamic-range rendering with 64-bit precision that ensures superior picture quality with more realistic and precise lighting without losses derived from reduced contrast ratio. A flexible renderer prepared for deferred or forward+ rendering pipelines has a wide array of cinematic post-processing effects, including bokeh depth-of-field, color grading and flares from many lights. A high-performance terrain system allows multiple material layers to be efficiently blended and uses tessellation for the best possible detail. The technology also includes seamless blending between animations and physics along with many more features. The engine uses CD Projekt RED’s new version of its proprietary REDkit editor with tools made specifically for RPG game creation. The editor can build complex, branching quests and set them in a free roaming environment with a simplicity not achieved by similar toolsets.
Paradox Interactive announces
plans for War of the Roses Kingmaker Edition
, a new gold edition of Fatshark's melee action game expected late this quarter. They also announce plans to release a free trial version of the game next week, and cap off the news by unveiling plans for a new premium DLC pack "soon," starring "famously boisterous" British actor Brian Blessed. Oh yeah, and to cap off that cap, they also have word on a new free "outside the law" Robin Hood content update for all editions of the game. There will be a live stream for War of the Roses on Twitch
today at 2:00 pm EST, and here's word:
In War of the Roses: Kingmaker, loyalists to the house of York or Lancaster will now have access to the content available since release, including the previously exclusive armor sets for both the red and white rose. Kingmaker will also introduce two new game modes—Assault and Assault Castle—where knights will face new attack and defense scenarios that aim to truly test their skill as a team.
A free trial version of War of the Roses is also planned for release February 6, which will allow anyone to download and play the game without cost. The trial version will include access to all online battles, enabling aspiring warriors to fight alongside all existing players – paid or trial. The trial version will limit players by disallowing any unlocks, giving access only to the game’s base classes and weapons, giving trial players a chance to live true knighthood.
In addition, Paradox will soon release a new premium DLC for War of the Roses, starring famously boisterous British actor BRIAN BLESSED as a new narrator for the game. Blessed’s booming voice will inspire knights by announcing in-game events and warnings, giving new meaning to the iconic command to “Kill the enemy!”
On top of all of these new editions, all versions of War of the Roses are scheduled to receive new content in the form of the new “Outside the Law” update, which will add an all new deep forest map to the game’s selection, along with armor pieces Robin of Loxley would be proud of.
The Under Development section on the World of Warcraft Website
has a new preview of what to expect from the upcoming version 5.2 "The Thunder King" update for World of Warcraft
, Blizzard's MMORPG. A new raid, a new zone, new world bosses, new factions, and more are all on the menu, and they offer details on what to expect. This is far from comprehensive, though, as they conclude by teasing what they are not discussing: "This is just the beginning – there’s a smorgasbord of newness coming in 5.2, including new Lorewalker artifacts, changes to Farmer Yoon’s plot (hint: time to be your own boss), hidden treasure chests, and much, much more."
games.on.net - The SimCity beta won’t help to win over the anti-DRM crowd.
I get that it’s a beta. It has the word ‘BETA’ stamped on it in about fifteen thousand different places. I understand that the multiplayer possibly — almost definitely — isn’t ready for public consumption yet. That’s fine. EA’s server team were no doubt working overtime on ironing out the kinks in their connectivity, and a fine job they did too. But the damage, for many, was probably already done.
With its one hour time limit and non-existent online capabilities, the SimCity we saw on the weekend isn’t the one that is going to help Maxis win over the anti-DRM crowd. If anything, it’s just going to push them further into their holes.
- ADATA XPG Gaming Series V2.0 PC3-19200 16GB Dual Channel Memory Kit on TweakTown.
- ASUS P8Z77-V Pro-Thunderbolt on ocaholic.
- CM Storm QuickFire TK Mechanical Keyboard on Neoseeker.
- Corsair Hydro Series H90 on techPowerUp.
- Dell XPS One 27 inch with Touch All-in-one (2710) Desktop on Hardware Heaven.
- G. Skill TridentX DDR3-2400 32GB Kit on Neoseeker.
- Intel SSD 525 Series Full Capacity Roundup on PC Perspective.
- Kingston SSD Now 300V 120GB on Overclockers Club.
- Lian Li PC-A76 Full-Tower Case on HARDOCP.
- NZXT Kraken X40 CPU Cooler on Hardware Secrets.
- Rosewill RHTS-8206 on Vortez.
- SilverStone SUGO SST-SG09B SFF Chassis on TweakTown.
- Steelseries Mobile Gaming & Headphone on eTeknix.
My NFL picks this postseason prove that I am not infallible in this area, but I am usually more decisive than I've been about picking a winner in the Super Bowl, as I've been on the fence since the participants were announced. I'm torn personally, as I like John Harbaugh better than Jim, but there's no player in the league I dislike more than Ray Lewis, which is probably the most prominent personal opinion that plays into this. In the end, I can't shake the feeling that the 49ers will get it done... which is probably half faith in them, and half my intense desire to not have to watch a celebratory squirrel dance and the accompanying squirrely self-righteousness.
Bonus picks: Adrian Peterson MVP, RG3 Rookie of the Year, and Peyton Manning Comeback player of the year.
R.I.P.: Ed Koch, mayor who became a symbol of NYC, dies