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Thursday, Mar 23, 2017

  

Brian Fargo to Retire After Wasteland 3

Eurogamer reports inXile boss Brian Fargo plans to retire after the company ships Wasteland 3, which is currently projected to happen in 2019. He made a few comments on the topic, which doesn't necessarily make his retirement sound permanent:

"Wasteland 2 and Torment both came out great," he said. "The Mage's Tale's got a great buzz. The Bard's Tale 4 looks spectacular. Wasteland 3 is building on Wasteland 2. It seems like a good time to drop the mic.

"I love this industry, but I've been at this since 1981. I've been at it with Ken and Roberta Williams [Sierra co-founders], Trip Hawkins [EA founder], the guys from Brøderbund - I look at my friends, they have a lot more spare time than I do. It's a very intense business. It's all encompassing. It seems like I should relax for a little bit."

Killing Floor 2 Free Weekend

Steam News announces an extended free weekend is underway for Killing Floor 2. As usual, this coincides with a sale, as the shooter sequel is currently half-off. Here's a refresher on the game:

In KILLING FLOOR 2, players descend into continental Europe where the outbreak caused by Horzine Biotech’s failed experiment has quickly spread and gained unstoppable momentum, essentially paralyzing the European Union— Just one month after the events in the original KILLING FLOOR, the specimen clones are everywhere and civilization is in disarray; communications have failed, governments have collapsed, and military forces have been systematically eradicated. The people of Europe know survival and self-preservation too well and lucky survivors have gone into hiding.

Not all have given up hope though... A group of civilians and mercenaries have banded together to combat the outbreak and established privately funded operation bases across Europe. Upon tracking specimen clone outbreaks, players will descend into zed-laden hot zones and exterminate them.

Football Manager 2017 Free Weekend

Steam News announces Football Manager 2017 is also free this weekend, in case you were hoping for the chance to kick around the sporting sim. The Football Manager website has more details:

Yes, this is the full Football Manager experience – completely free of charge. You’ll have unrestricted access to all of the world’s top leagues and many, many more. With more than 2,500 clubs to take charge of, which team will you pick? You can even create your own club!

Perhaps you’re looking for something faster-paced than career mode? Then why not try Fantasy Draft, where you’ll pick from the world’s best players and build your ultimate team to compete against your friends online - and there's also a single-player mode. There’s more ways to manage than ever before!

The final whistle blows on free play this Sunday, but if you enjoy the game you can make the loan deal permanent at 50% off the usual asking price. Any progress you make will be carried forward, so you won’t have to start your career all over again.

Mass Effect: Andromeda Apex Missions Launch

Mass Effect website announces the debut multiplayer Apex mission is now available for Mass Effect: Andromeda, offering the "first of several ongoing story-based missions that will feature new playable characters, weapons and items." This trailer introduces "Drack's Missing Scouts," which is available through Monday in the action/RPG sequel. Here's word:

The fight for a new home continues in multiplayer APEX Missions, beginning now. Squad up with your friends as a member of the APEX militia, or send out your Strike Team, and take on these daring limited time missions on behalf of the Andromeda Initiative. Get a chance to earn valuable Mission Funds to spend on new equipment items. A new fighter joins the ranks today, the Krogan Gladiator. And a new weapon, the Ruzad Shotgun, will become available in Store packs.

Continue here to read the full story.

Afghanistan '11 Released

Slitherine announces the release of Afghanistan '11, the counter-insurgency game following in the boot prints of Vietnam ’65. The Windows strategy game is available on Steam, carrying a 10% launch discount. This trailer from last month offers a look at the game, and here's word on what to expect:

Slitherine and Every Single Soldier are once again taking the strategy genre from a totally new angle. After the stunning success of Vietnam ’65 (81 score on Metacritic and 85 user’s review score on Steam), the counter-insurgency gaming system created by Johan Nagel is back in a new setting, with a new look and with a monumental list of new features.

As before, players are faced with the task of destroying an ever-elusive enemy while striving to win the Hearts & Minds of the local population. They must juggle spending resources to fight the enemy, while at the same time capitalising on the opportunity to bring civilians to their cause.

They are facing a barrage of obstacles, from IED's to hidden enemies such as local militia that excel at guerrilla warfare as well as Taliban troops that make their way over the mountains from Pakistan to stifle their efforts. Their own casualties can severely damage military progress while eliminating enemy troops and assisting villages and improving their infrastructure can significantly assist them. They will have many tools to achieve success, from the mighty Apache Helicopter to Special Forces units which can be used to train Afghan National Army Units or to hunt down the enemy.

Logistics are also a key factor: defending supply convoys without which troops will suffer and will be vulnerable to ambushes and loss of combat effectiveness is the key to attaining a solid victory.

Furthermore, a tense political situation grips the country: unpredictable Political Events can significantly alter the outcome of the struggle and Elections will play a vital role in the mission to stabilise Afghanistan.

With 18 different campaign scenarios starting from the initial actions in Afghanistan to the culmination of American involvement there are tens of hours of counter-insurgency warfare to be played. The game also has an extremely customizable Skirmish mode which allows to consistently alter any parameter of the operation the player’s liking.

Continue here to read the full story.

Prey Trailer

Bethesda.net offers a new trailer from Prey called "Only Yu Can Save the World" (Yu see what they did there?). The clip helps understand Morgan Yu, the player character in the upcoming shooter re-something. Would you like to know more? Pray read on:

In Prey, you’re mankind’s last – and only – hope. Using badass weapons and powers, you’ll step into the TranStar uniform of Morgan Yu and fight through an alien-infested space station to save humanity. But while you’re safeguarding the world from the Typhon threat aboard Talos I, you’re also in search of your own identity. Who exactly are you? What powers, abilities and weapons can you wield? What other choices will you make? And who else is aboard Talos I? We answer these questions – and more – in our latest video.

While Morgan begins as an enigma, you’ll define who he is through your choices and actions. Do you rescue the survivors aboard Talos I? Will you choose to install more alien-based powers – and thus alter your own humanity? And, at the most basic level, how will you survive with the deadly Typhon aliens actively hunting you? Every decision you make has the potential to reverberate throughout the entire game.

“What Morgan does to respond to the aliens invading the station matters,” says Lead Systems Designer Seth Shain. “All of these things contribute to different permutations of end games that we have, so it matters that way. But it also matters how the other characters respond to you and how they treat you. And it’s exactly what will define Morgan in the end.”

Continue here to read the full story.

Ballistic Overkill This Month

Aquiris Game Studio announces a March 28th launch date for the full version of Ballistic Overkill, the Windows, Linux, and OS X PvP shooter that's currently in early access on Steam. A new gameplay teaser trailer celebrates the news, and here's more on what to expect:

Horizon Chase developer Aquiris Game Studio has been 2 years untiringly developing its PvP class-based shooter Ballistic Overkill, which has sold over 50.000 copies to date, spread mainly across the US, Brazil, China and Germany. The game also achieved 84% positive review rate on Steam, attracting both hardcore and casual FPS gamers, many of them praising the game and comparing with classic and modern titles of the genre, as Quake III Arena, the original Unreal Tournament, Call of Duty MW2 or Battlefield 3. The studio is pleased to announce the project is ready to leave Early Access, and also wants to thank the devoted community for supporting the project during all these months with enormously valuable feedback which shaped the final product after 7 years of history. For Aquiris the project is not close at all, only the release version, as it will continue to improve after launch with extra content and features.

Continue here to read the full story.

Dauntless Alpha Signups

Phoenix Labs is now accepting signups from those interested in beta testing Dauntless, their upcoming co-op action/RPG. They say that invitations for closed alpha tests will roll out over the next few months, with the first testing to begin within a couple of months. They add that an open beta will follow later this year. Here's word on their plans:

Dauntless will be in an early Alpha state and we want you to give feedback even though it’s unfinished. For example, we may turn 500 people loose to fight only Drask for a day to properly balance his encounter. We may unlock a new weapon or armour set to test how well they perform in the heat of battle. There will be bugs, glitches, and unfinished content; it’s all part of the process.

Because Dauntless will still be a work in progress, we will be asking all Alpha participants to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and to not share their access with anyone, to not stream the game, and to not create videos or screenshots of the game.

We believe in partnering with content creators and empowering them to express their passion for Dauntless, and later this year we will open Dauntless up for streaming, video creation, and other kinds of sharing. This will include supporting the community with video pre-roll packages, overlays, logos, and everything else you need to make the best looking content.

PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS Early Access

Steam now offers early access to PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS, a last-man standing shooter from Bluehole and the creator of the Battle Royale game-mode found in the ARMA series and H1Z1 : King of the Kill (thanks Blahman). The game's website has the news, along with a new trailer, and there's more on the early access launch in this update on Steam. Here's word:

Today is a very special day for me! For the last four years, ever since I launched my first Battle Royale game-mode using the DayZ mod on Arma 2, I have worked hard to try deliver an intense, dynamic and fun experience. Through its various iterations in the ARMA series, H1Z1 and now in my own standalone game, you all have shown me tremendous support, and for that I want to say a sincere thank you.

I now want to run through a timeline for optimization of our game. A lot of you have been asking about how and when we will optimize the game, so hopefully this post will give you a better idea of our plans over the coming months.

One important thing to note. Client optimization takes time, and will not be solved in one single patch. We will be working hard over the next 6 months to ensure all players enjoy smooth gameplay with no lag or FPS drops.

Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Dialogue- A Writer's Story -- Steam Greenlight. "Dialogue: A Writer’s Story is a game about conversations, writing and science. You play out a year in the life of Lucille, a writer working on her science fantasy novel, whose content is highly inspired by her neighbour Adrian’s research subject, biochemistry. The gameplay consists of different kinds of conversations, in which the player can learn more about Lucille, her family and friends." The trailer offers a look.
  • Nerepis -- Steam Greenlight. "Nerepis is a third person weapons based fighting set in an unknown time. Each match, whether solo or team-based is a grueling battle with a cast of unique characters and levels." Here's a trailer.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

New Overwatch Reporting Options on PTR

A new version of Overwatch now live on the Public Test Realm for Blizzard's multiplayer shooter. Kotaku notes that the newest version includes new options for reporting players to help make the game a less wretched hive of scum and villainy. Word is new system allows you to tattle on players for Spam, Abusive Chat, Cheating, Griefing, Inactivity, Bad Battletag, and Poor Teamwork. There's no option yet for insta-locking a sniper, but that could conceivably covered by the last item, so there's that.

Destiny 2 in September?

What appear to be marketing material for Destiny 2 can now be found online, showing a September 8, 2017 release date for the shooter sequel. There are details on the alleged leak on PSU. The original appeared on consoles only, but there have been unconfirmed reports of a PC version of the follow-up, so consider this a story of compound rumors. PSU also reports another rumor on this, quoting an "industry insider" saying a PS4 early access period for Destiny 2 is planned to start in June.

Shiness Next Month

A new "music trailer" for Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom reveals an April 18th release date for this kickstarted action/RPG. This is a bit of delay, as the game was announced for a 2016 release, but it is now nearing release for Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. Steam News has some accompanying details:

The game’s universe was born over 20 years ago from the pen strokes of Samir Rebib, our Artistic Director. In today’s trailer, we invite you discovering the magical lands and characters of the Lightning Kingdom, accompanied by an entrancing, original soundtrack.

This gives you a first taste of the tracks that will accompany you along your journey. We have pumped all our energy and passion into Shiness, and in less than a month a child's dream finally becomes an indie-RPG with a bold personality… and enchanting music!

Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom comes to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on 18 April 2017.

Pre-orders for PC are open on Steam, and include the Official Shiness Manga, the Original Soundtrack and 15% off the game's price.

Continue here to read the full story.

RPG Maker MV Linux Support

An update for RPG Maker MV on Steam updates this game creation toolkit to version 1.4.0. Publisher Degica proudly announces over one million copies of the game, saying the preliminary Linux export support in the new version is a celebration of the news. Here's word on that: "Now you can use RPG Maker MV on Linux computers to make games, and also export games from Linux for other people to play using PC, Mac, or Linux editions of RPG Maker MV. Also there's a tutorial feature added to the "Help" menu. It is still experimental, but it should help to walk you through basic game making."

Morning Patches

Morning Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Vesta -- Steam Greenlight. "Set in a highly technological universe, with Vesta you will again feel the challenge of traditional puzzle games mixed with more arcade elements, all within a very elaborate and fascinating story. Gears, robots, mystery, humour, challenges, fun and action ... Vesta is that, and much more." Here's a trailer.

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Interviews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Seems there's an Archer AR app to accompany the premiere of season eight, as they take the show's viral scavenger hunting to the next level. I'm not sure I'll participate in that aspect of the program, but I am happy with anything that raises its profile and fuels the potential that it will run for another 20-something seasons and challenge the Simpsons' run.

Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Loot Heroes: Clicker.
Link: The giant ships that ship other ships through the shipping lanes.
Stories: The retail apocalypse has officially descended on America.
Boy with skin disorder finds best friend in dog with same condition.
Science: Scammy science- 40 journals appointed a fake person as editor.
Media: James Bond Is A Terrible Employee.
Dash Cam Owners Australia March 2017 (NSFW). Thanks Boing Boing.



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