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Friday, Feb 24, 2017 Happy Birthday Qtest

  

ZeniMax Seeks Rift Injunction

ZeniMax Media has filed for an injunction to remove Oculus virtual reality products from sale that use their code, reports GamesIndustry.biz. This is a follow-up to ZeniMax's recent court victory over copyright infringement and related charges related to code created by John Carmack, formerly of ZeniMax subsidiary id Software. Word is:

This injunction specifically relates to lines of code used by developers creating software for Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR. If the injunction takes effect, it will have an impact on which games can be sold for those devices.

A spokeswoman for Oculus, Tera Randall, stated that the company is appealing the original verdict, describing it as, "legally flawed and factually unwarranted."

Overwatch Doubles Down on Doomfist Hints

A tweet from Overwatch reports an attack at the Numbani airport. Word is: "[BREAKING] OR15 defense units destroyed in confrontation with unidentified assailant at Numbani airport. No civilian casualties reported." This is accompanied by an image of damage to a wall, which may have met its doom at the hands of a fist. There have long been rumors that Doomfist is the next hero coming to the game, but Jeff Kaplan recently tried to dampen that expectation. Now to refuel that fire of speculation, Polygon notes the Doomfist gauntlet is no longer contained on the payload vehicle on the Numbani map.

Hollow Knight Released

Hollow Knight is now available for Windows on GOG.com and Steam. Here's word on Team Cherry's action/adventure:

Beneath the fading town of Dirtmouth sleeps an ancient, ruined kingdom. Many are drawn below the surface, searching for riches, or glory, or answers to old secrets.

Hollow Knight is a classically styled 2D action adventure across a vast interconnected world. Explore twisting caverns, ancient cities and deadly wastes; battle tainted creatures and befriend bizarre bugs; and solve ancient mysteries at the kingdom's heart.

  • Classic side-scrolling action, with all the modern trimmings.
  • Tightly tuned 2D controls. Dodge, dash and slash your way through even the most deadly adversaries.
  • Explore a vast interconnected world of forgotten highways, overgrown wilds and ruined cities.
  • Forge your own path! The world of Hallownest is expansive and open. Choose which paths you take, which enemies you face and find your own way forward.
  • Evolve with powerful new skills and abilities! Gain spells, strength and speed. Leap to new heights on ethereal wings. Dash forward in a blazing flash. Blast foes with fiery Soul!
  • Equip Charms! Ancient relics that offer bizarre new powers and abilities. Choose your favourites and make your journey unique!
  • An enormous cast of cute and creepy characters all brought to life with traditional 2D frame-by-frame animation.
  • Over 130 enemies! 30 epic bosses! Face ferocious beasts and vanquish ancient knights on your quest through the kingdom. Track down every last twisted foe and add them to your Hunter's Journal!
  • Leap into minds with the Dream Nail. Uncover a whole other side to the characters you meet and the enemies you face.
  • Beautiful painted landscapes, with extravagant parallax, give a unique sense of depth to a side-on world.
  • Chart your journey with extensive mapping tools. Buy compasses, quills, maps and pins to enhance your understanding of Hollow Knight’s many twisting landscapes.
  • A haunting, intimate score accompanies the player on their journey, composed by Christopher Larkin. The score echoes the majesty and sadness of a civilisation brought to ruin.
  • Complete Hollow Knight to unlock Steel Soul Mode, the ultimate challenge!

Mass Effect: Andromeda System Specs

Origin now offers system requirements for the upcoming PC edition of Mass Effect: Andromeda (thanks DSOGaming). Here they are:

MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS

OS: 64-bit Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10
PROCESSOR: Intel Core i5 3570 or AMD FX-6350
MEMORY: 8 GB RAM
VIDEO CARD: NVIDIA GTX 660 2GB, AMD Radeon 7850 2GB
HARD DRIVE: At least 55 GB of free space
DIRECTX: DirectX 11

RECOMMENDED SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS

OS: 64-bit Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10
PROCESSOR: Intel Core i7-4790 or AMD FX-8350
MEMORY: 16 GB RAM
VIDEO CARD: NVIDIA GTX 1060 3GB, AMD RX 480 4GB
HARD DRIVE: At least 55 GB of free space
DIRECTX: DirectX 11

Hellion Early Access

Early Access to Hellion is now underway on Steam, offering a science-fiction first-person online RPG. This post accompanying the launch explains Zero Gravity Games is temporarily lowering the number of players per instance to 30, but their goal is to increase that back to 100 players per server as they optimize their code. Here's a cinematic launch trailer and here's more on the game and their plans:

The first Hellion Early Access build allows players to salvage derelict station modules in order to obtain parts and resources to build their base and upgrade their own equipment. Hellion colonists can also choose to EVA mine raw resources and refine them into fuel, air and crafting components. Survivors have to exchange the safety of the ship for a thrilling EVA experience as they explore the ruins of mankind’s first interstellar colony in search of intel, resources and equipment. Players will experience the unique feel of zero gravity movement without restrictions and master the use of inertia for maximum benefit. The Hellion Early Access build offers free multiplayer interactions so players are able to play as a lone wolf, team up to pilot multi-crew ships with realistic navigation, or engage in PvP close quarters combat.

Future patches will add fully modular ship and equipment customization, ship to ship combat, asteroid ship mining, gas giant harvesting, realistic wound mechanics, suit damage and degradation, as well as allow building and hacking a security system and much more. Full current and future feature lists can be found here: https://www.playhellion.com/features

Continue here to read the full story.

The Golf Club VR Tees Off

Steam News announces the launch of The Golf Club VR, a new version of the sports sim for HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. Here's word:

The Golf Club VR is built off the foundation laid by HB Studios’ original award winning game released in 2014, The Golf Club, taking advantage of the original game’s stunning visual presentation and over 130,000, two kilometer² procedurally and user-generated courses. The Golf Club VR will allow you to enjoy your round of golf like never before. With the HTC Vive room-scale capabilities, users have the opportunity to play golf from the comfort of their home all while having complete control over their experience. Choose the right club for every situation from your interactive golf bag. Plan how you want to attack each hole with your yardage booklet and receive on-the-fly information for each shot from your golf watch, or just simply explore the vast landscape around you.

On Sale

Evening Interviews

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

For Honor Cheaters Banned

There seems to be a degree of irony to cheating in a game called For Honor, but UbiBlog has word that some miscreants are indeed bending the rules in their new melee combat game. They say they are cracking down on this situation with their EasyAntiCheat software, which sounds like something you'd buy from an infomercial ("the secret is in the MD5 hashing!"). They say they are taking this seriously enough to hand out bans for first offences. Here's word:

For Honor puts a huge emphasis on skill, so it’s important that it offers a level playing field – and to ensure that nobody has an unfair advantage, the developers have rolled out EasyAntiCheat, a program that detects and flags those who break the rules. Giving the team a way to track cheating, hacking, and offensive communications forbidden by the game’s code of conduct, EasyAntiCheat has already been used to identify and ban fewer than 400 players for cheating and an additional 70 players for offensive conduct.

After being flagged by EasyAntiCheat, suspect accounts are reviewed by the dev team, which then hands out warnings, temporary suspensions, or permanent bans against identified players. These bans are applied on an account level, not at the hardware level. Fairness is hugely important to the game’s creators, so bans are being handed out to first-time offenders. Players who believe they’ve been erroneously penalized can also appeal their bans.

To find out more about For Honor’s code of conduct and the consequences for violating it, visit the official For Honor support page.

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Criminal Past Released

Criminal Past is now available for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, offering the second story DLC for the action/RPG sequel. This trailer shows things off, and this post has word on a patch that this requires. The patch notes actually have more on the DLC than the announcement post. Here's the rundown on what to expect:

Added support for the Jensen Story - A Criminal Past DLC mission. Jensen is transferred deep into a hostile, high-security prison for augmented felons. His mission: track down and retrieve sensitive information from a fellow undercover agent who has gone dark. Success will help the fight against terror around the world, but Jensen will need to confront a darker side to his role before the day is done.

Continue here to read the full story.

Civilization VI Adds Australia and Mod Support

A new premium Australia DLC is now available for Sid Meier's Civilization VI, along with a new update for all players of the turn-based strategy game (thanks Kotaku). This page has the details on the Australia campaign and all that it adds to the game. This post has all the details on the accompanying patch, which adds mod tools and Steam workshop support to the game. Here's a bit on what's new following their original kooky formatting:

[NEW]

  • TEAMS:
  • Multiplayer Teams have been added to Civilization VI and this feature builds on updates to the Alliance agreement. Players on teams gain additional benefits (beyond those of an alliance), as follows:
    • When one teammate finishes research on a tech or civic, their teammate(s) receive a boost for that tech or civic.
    • Teammates share war status against opponents not on their team.
    • Teammates share allied status with opponents not on their team.
    • Teammates work together to win or lose the game as a single entity. The Religion and Culture Victories have been reworked so they are more cooperative.
      • The Religion Victory requires you to convert all civs to ONE of the religions started by your team.
      • The Culture Victory requires ONE member of your team to be culturally dominant over all players NOT on your team.
    • MODDING TOOLS
      • Updated lobby and in-game UI to better show Additional Content details.
        • Added Sid Meier’s Civilization VI Development Tools, which includes ModBuddy, Tools, FireTuner, and the Steam Workshop Uploader.
        • ModBuddy: A packaging and development tool.
        • Art/Asset Tools: Import FBX files into a format usable by the game, as well as customize existing art.
        • FireTuner: In-game debugging and editing tool.
    • Added Sid Meier’s Civiliation VI Development Assets, which includes the game art assets. This is a large download (approximately 7GB compressed download and 27GB on disk) which contains game assets, including models, textures, and interface elements.
    • STEAM WORKSHOP
      • Access mods created by the Steam community via Steam Workshop
      • Share your mods with the Steam community with the Steam Workshop uploader.

ModBuddy will also receive additional updates in the future, as part of a modding SDK update later. These tools do not include DLL source for Civilization VI at this time.

D.I.C.E. Awards

The 20th Annual D.I.C.E. Awards Results are online, showing the winners of last night's ceremony. Overwatch was overall game of the year, and took home four awards in total. This press release has all the details on the cutthroat competition. Here are the winners:

Game of the Year
Overwatch

  • Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
  • Developer: Blizzard Entertainment

Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction
INSIDE

  • Publisher: Playdead
  • Developer: Playdead

Outstanding Achievement in Game Design
Overwatch

  • Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
  • Developer: Blizzard Entertainment

Immersive Reality Technical Achievement
Eagle Flight

  • Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Developer: FunHouse

Immersive Reality Game of the Year
SUPERHOT VR

  • Publisher: SUPERHOT Sp. z o.o.
  • Developer: SUPERHOT Sp. z o.o.

Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Consolidation

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Earlier this week I heard a reference to today being National Chili Day, so I filed that away. Now I see I missed the boat, as this was actually yesterday, as it is apparently always the fourth Thursday in February. I won't let my error on the timing deter me, however, as it will be better to celebrate this late than never. I want to use the occasion to see how a smaller batch will turn out. My usual recipe calls for seven pounds of meat, and ends up cooking for 12+ hours, so my thought is to scale down the ingredients and see if this can be cooked in less time. If I can make it less of a production, I can make the chili more often, and not have to be so concerned with freezing or giving away some of it to keep it from going bad. Seems like a foolproof plan, but I'm just the kind of fool who would take that as a challenge, so we'll just have to see.

Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
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