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Thursday, Aug 22, 2013

Everybody's Gone To The Rapture PS4

Rock, Paper, Shotgun has word that Everybody's Gone To The Rapture will be a PS4 exclusive, so any plans for a PC edition of the next game from the team behind Dear Esther are now on long-term hold at best. "Dear Esther fans were very much in our thoughts, but enough of us are multi-platform gamers to make this work for us," explains Dan Pinchbeck of developer thechineseroom. "And we’re in this for the long game, so I can’t see us not returning to PC, or doing whatever we can to keep that fan base as we owe them a great deal. But part of that is following our instincts about how we develop and find stability as a studio and this is going to be part of the process. And without sounding like a bought man, the PS4 is genuinely a really, really cool platform, and if people have never bought into console gaming before, this is the time."

Dead Sky Announced

Shorebound Studios announces Dead Sky, a tower defense/zombie shooter coming to Windows, OS X, and Linux later this year as the next project from the Spectraball developer. A new Dead Sky website is online, offering a gameplay trailer, and we also have some screenshots. The game also has a Facebook page and a Steam Greenlight campaign. That's pretty much it for now except for this feature list:

  • Wide-Ranging Single Player - Play through the expansive single-player mode, taking on zombies, gunning from choppers, and much more in 9 missions.
  • Cooperative Multiplayer - Take yourself and up to three friends into a hectic, horde based, multiplayer game. Survive as long as you can, crafting your defensive base and fighting the zombie horde.
  • 30+ Weapons, Zombies and Powerups - Dead Sky features many unique weapons, zombies and powerups for you to come across.
    Expansive Crafting System - Craft a variety of defensive items ranging from turrets, traps, barricades and more to enhance your base as you fight off the horde.
  • Online Leaderboards - Compete with your friends and other players worldwide to see how you rank.

Continue here to read the full story.

Total War: ROME II Multiplayer Trailer

Let's play, declares a new trailer from Total War: ROME II with a look at multiplayer support in Creative Assembly's upcoming strategy sequel, including a conversation on the topic as well as gameplay. Here's word: "Community Team’s Trish Ryniak and Multiplayer designer Elliot Lock go head to head in this first look at Multiplayer for Total War: ROME II. With Trish playing as Parthia vs Elliott as Pontus, they battle it out in Gor in an unfortified city assault. Elliott takes the opportunity to talk us through some new features in multiplayer and how the stunning interactive campaign map allows for thousands of battle grounds and new battle types." Continue here to read the full story.

Battlefield 4 Trailer

A new Road to Battlefield 4 feature on The Battlefield Blog is called "Levolutionizing the Battle," as they continue to work their new addition to the lexicon (we all want to change the world). What do they mean by "levolution?" Well they offer a new trailer where DICE multiplayer producer Aleksander Grøndal helpfully explains: "It could be anything," though backs up that vagueness with lots of examples of elements that can change the outcome of a battle in progress in the upcoming military shooter sequel. Here's word from the blog post:
Ending up with the game-changing concept that is Levolution was a long and iterative design process for us. Going into Battlefield 4 two years or so ago, we first explored a concept that we internally dubbed "Timeline". The thought back then was that a background timer would alter the multiplayer levels and take it into different stages automatically. Basically, map-changing events would trigger automatically no matter what the players did in the match.

But we soon realized that players much prefer manual control to as great an extent as possible – so we steered down the path of maximizing player interaction with our dynamic content instead. The clearest feedback came from all of the players who tried to blow up the tower in Caspian Border that we talked about in the first blog post.

The name was then changed to Levolution. This is a good opportunity for me to assume full responsibility for the name. Although people think it’s a marketing buzz word, it was created as an internal communication tool during development to – in a very simple way – explain the vision of changing the level as you played. It's served us well.
Continue here to read the full story.

On Sale

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Evening Screenshots

Thanks Cutter.

Evening Tech Bits

DayZ Delayed Again

DayZ creator Dean Hall spoke with Joystiq at Gamescom, explaining that the upcoming standalone version of DayZ no longer has a set release window, in spite of initial plans to release the game last year and his statement just two months ago that they had pinned down the game's release to a specific week (thanks nin). Hall explains that progress on Bohemia Interactive's survival/horror game is held up waiting for changes to the game's core network architecture. "That's the kind of thing only a few people can work on. It's very specialized," he tells them. "It's like, you can't throw more pilots at a plane. You put a thousand pilots in a plane it's not going to fly any faster." As the market continues to flood with zombie games, he optimistically explains that the best thing that can happen to this project is to lower the level of anticipation:
"If most of the community who maybe thought DayZ was cool a year ago and now they think it's lame, I think that's probably good for us. We don't need to sell that many copies to break-even. We want to be a hardcore game and I think if we make a good game people will come back."

He concluded, "The worst thing we could do would be to release too early. Flat out, that's the stupidest thing we could do. [The alpha launch] is going to be riddled with bugs, but the one thing I don't want it to be riddled with is terrible multiplayer, it's a multiplayer game."

Call of Duty: Ghosts PC Dedicated Servers Planned

Eurogamer has a confirmation from Infinity Ward that the Windows edition of Call of Duty: Ghosts will include dedicated server support. This conversation followed word that Ghosts has dedicated servers on Xbox One, but IW would not be pinned down on whether they would also offer dedicated server support for those nasty last-generation consoles. "[Xbox One and PC] are the only platforms we're talking about at the moment," Infinity Ward executive producer Mark Rubin told them. "So, watch this space!"

Tactical Intervention Closed Beta

Publisher 1337 Games announces closed beta testing for Tactical Intervention begins today, as promised, offering the unusual prospect of a closed beta for a game that's already had an open beta and has been released. According to Wikipedia, the servers for the game were brought down by OGPlanet on June 10th because "player involvement has yet to reach a level for OGPlanet to sustain its future service" (the post on the topic is no longer available), even though they gave the game almost a full two weeks (13 days to be precise) to make its mark. They say the game will re-launch on September 12th as a free-to-play title on Steam, and offer a new trailer showing off gameplay and reminding us of the Counter-Strike pedigree of creator Minh "Gooseman" Le. Here's word on how those interested can get access to the beta:
Berlin, 22nd August 2013: Players who want to take a look at the new Tactical Shooter, developed by the Co-Creator of Counter Strike Minh “Gooseman” Le, even before the official release can rejoice; Tactical Intervention is playable from today at the gamescom booth of the Publisher 1337 games (Hall 8, Stood B020). In addition, lucky winners of a key for the Closed Beta phase can plunge straight into the action-packed battles between terrorists and counter-terrorists now! Everyone without a key, should take a look at the Tactical Intervention Facebook page as during gamescom, there will be plenty of keys up for grabs in raffles and giveaways!

In collaboration with the Community, Tactical Intervention will be continuously improved and expanded. By the end of the Closed Beta on the 28th August, players will have been able to test the shooter and contribute their feedback and their suggestions in pursuit of an optimal Release-Version. Interested players that had no opportunity to get a beta-key will have, from the 29th of August, their chance to get involved with Tactical Intervention in the Open Beta phase.

Don't Starve Adds Steam Workshop

Steam News announces the addition of Steam Workshop support to Don't Starve, the adventure game from Klei Entertainment. Here's word: "What does that mean? Well, a lot of things. Add in custom characters, play with the world generation, create new creatures and items, or take your adventure in a whole new direction! Using our handy-dandy Mod Upload Machine you can put your mods directly onto Steam Workshop for everyone to download and enjoy."

War of the Vikings Closed Alpha

Paradox Interactive announces they are in the process of inviting players to the closed alpha testing of War of the Vikings, saying this first round of testing will run until September 1st. Those interested in doing a little hacking and slashing in the melee combat game can still sign up on this website, and access is guaranteed for anyone who refers five friends. Here's word:
NEW YORK — August 22, 2013 — Paradox Interactive, a publisher of games and a grinder of axes, today invited select players to try their upcoming title, War of the Vikings, in Closed Alpha Testing. Developed by Fatshark, War of the Vikings is built upon the same skill-driven close combat gameplay that powers War of the Roses, and extends Paradox’s War series into the brutal and bloody Viking Age. Players will be signing in to game servers today and putting the game’s features to the test, ensuring the axes fly true and the beards flow freely when the game launches.

The game’s first Closed Alpha will drop players into the Pitched Arena game mode, a harsh, fast-paced battle with no respawns with victory going to the last Viking or Saxon standing. Two maps will be on display, with three character classes available to choose from, giving testers the chance to experience a wide range of available weapons, perks, and play styles. The test will last until September 1, 2013, at 2:00 CEST.

ROAM "Legal Matter" Wrapping Up

A Kickstarter update for ROAM explains that the "legal things" they recently stated the game is dealing with are nearly resolved: "The legal matter we addressed in the last update is very close to being resolved and has in no way damaged the future of ROAM. All of the Kickstarter raised money has been used in the creation of ROAM and ROAM alone. Funds were never used at all in the relation to the legal matter." They say this involved removing a member from the team and all of that person's contributions, saying they have already replaced this work already and have put the matter in the past. They conclude saying they are still confident they will release a playable demo in January 2014.

The Crew Trailer

A new trailer from The Crew offers a gameplay trailer from Ubisoft's upcoming driving action game. The clip is narrated by Jean Garrity, creative director on the project, who explains their game "seeks to redefine the genre with its unique social approach to driving, and a massive open world filled with life." The clip follows a player on his travels, showing car tuning and customization, recruiting a friend into his crew, and more, somewhat ironically discussing the open world while showing the players following a set path as part of a challenge, though they go on to show a race with track, per se, saying: "Imagine this on the scale of an entire country, the whole of the U.S.A., and how it draws players to unlimited and unexpected driving adventures. Constantly meeting other players, challenging them, or even recruiting them." Continue here to read the full story.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

War broke out in the backyard today as I was making my morning coffee, or at least it sounded that way with Hudson the wonder dog and the Gunnar-man going completely berserk out there. When I investigated I found that our neighbors are dog-sitting, and while their own dog is a mellow fellow, it seems the newcomer enjoys stirring up trouble. The funny thing is, this guy is about the size of our dogs' dinner, but that didn't stop him from trying to work up everybody even after I intervened, as I could hear his little growls from across the yard as he subtly tried to keep the hostilities fired up. This all took place at 6:10 am, so I can only imagine how popular we are with the rest of the neighborhood right now.

Popular Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Viktor the Nth.
Links: Help Track Down The Truck Driver Who Set This Dog On Fire. Thanks nin.
Science: Someone beat the Vikings into the North Atlantic by 500 years.
Media: Mike Tyson plays Mike Tyson's Punch-Out for the 1st time.
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