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Wednesday, Nov 08, 2017

  

Hellbound Announced

Saibot Studios announces Hellbound, drawing our attention by describing this as a 90s-style first-person shooter that's using the Unreal Engine 4 to capture the feel of classics such as DOOM, QUAKE, and Duke Nukem 3D. This trailer (NSFW) teases the game and its BFGs, and if you're drawn in, you can sign up for the closed beta test on the official website. Here's word:

Hellbound is the latest PC title by Saibot Studios, the team behind popular horror series Doorways. Inspired by DOOM, Quake, Duke Nukem 3D, Blood and many other shooters of the past, the game experience is focused on shooting, explosions, blood and speed. You have never played something so GROTESQUE!

Players take control of Hellgore, a big-ass motherf*cker who kills demons in Hell. That’s it. Is there a story behind all this? Well… yes, there’s a story, but it's not that important! The real protagonists are the fast-paced action and the gory violence.

Hellbound will be available very soon in PC, first as a Survival Mode that will equip players with the heaviest fire guns of Hell to pit them against hordes of fearsome demons and other monstrous enemies. Closed beta registration is now open on the official Website.

Continue here to read the full story.

LawBreakers Free Weekend

A Steam Community Announcement informs us that this weekend will be another free trial for LawBreakers, the multiplayer shooter from Boss Key Productions. This will get underway tomorrow, and this post notes that and the game is also currently on sale for half off, and that they will conduct a free Collector's Edition giveaway tomorrow as well, though this involves purchasing the base version. Here's word on the free weekend:

Get your keyboard + mice ready - a Free Weekend on Steam is coming at ya this Thursday, November 9. There has never been a better time to convince your friends and family to Get in the Game. So, be sure to tell your friends who haven’t yet jumped into the chaos of zero-g that this is the chance they have been waiting for. The latest version of LawBreakers now has more onboarding materials like the Guided Tutorial, our Ranked Mode Boss Leagues and much more!

But that’s not all! Not only can you and your friends jump into the gravity defying action of LawBreakers for free this weekend, we’ve also made sure to celebrate this event with a huge 50% off sale. It’s the perfect time to buy during this limited time offer, because half-off won’t last forever.

And for our most devoted fans, we’re going to be running a LawBreakers Collector’s Edition giveaway! You’ll be able to win one of the super limited, sold out Collector’s Editions for your platform of choice. Stay tuned to our channel, as details are coming soon!

Free Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms Starter Pack

The Idle Champions Starter Pack for Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms is free on Steam for the next 48 hours. This offers a quick leg up in this free-to-play Dungeons & Dragons adventure game for Windows and macOS. Word is: "Get an entry-level boost to start your Idle Champions adventure with a piece of gear for Bruenor and two Gold Chests." The free offer runs until noon Eastern time on Sunday.

GOG Revives Three Sierra Classics

The good old gamers at GOG.com announce they've added three classic Sierra games from back in the day to the DRM-free offerings on their service, Rise of the Dragon, Heart of China, and Conqueror A.D. 1086. Here's word on the new additions, which include a pair of games developed by Dynamix:

Take a few bytes of gaming history with GOG.com, the digital game store where the oldies come to play.

Today, three productions from the Sierra & Dynamix back catalog return, including two legendary Jeff Tunnell adventures (designer for Incredible Machines, Willy Beamish, and Betrayal at Krondor) – fully restored for with modern computers, exclusively on GOG.com:

Rise of the Dragon
With its noir cyberpunk setting, the Blade Runner inspirations are undeniable and that's a good enough reason to not pass this one by. Furthermore, the story-heavy gameplay and stylish art set the stage for years of unforgettable Sierra adventures, making Rise of the Dragon an influential release and noteworthy experience even today.

Heart of China
A product of its time through and through, this 1991 adventure plays like an interactive-comic trip through an admittedly outmoded depiction of 1930s China. According to Computer Gaming World, "Heart of China is everything a good adventure movie should be: fast-paced, tense, ingenious, witty, varied of locale and light of plot. Above all, it is entertaining." It was labeled one of the 50 best computer games ever by PC Format in 1991.

Conqueror A.D. 1086
Fast-forward a few years to 1995, and travel back to medieval Europe. Conqueror A.D. 1086 is a blend of strategy, management, and a sprinkle of action – taking you from but a child, to conqueror of lands or slayer of dragons.

Evening Crowdfunding Roundup

  • Project Sense - 不祥的预感- A Cyberpunk Ghost Story Adventure by Benjamin W Widdowson - ProjectSenseDev — Kickstarter. "Sense - 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story is a 2.5D game inspired in design by Clock Tower and Fatal Frame, and story-wise by sci-fi classics like Bladerunner as well as heavily from Traditional Asian Folklore. Set in the year 2083 in Neo Hong-Kong, the story follows Mei-Lin Mak, a young woman with cybernetic eyes pulled into the maelstrom of an unsolved supernatural mystery from centuries past. As she peers deeper into the mystery, her perception of reality slowly crumbles around her, leaving her to question every intricacy of her surroundings." A playable demo is available, and here's a trailer.

Evening Interviews

Evening Patches

On Sale

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

etc., etc.

Into the Black

F2P Battlerite Launches

Stunlock Studios announces Battlerite has graduated from early access to a full release, kicking off the free-to-play era for their Windows team arena brawler. The game is available on Steam where they are also selling character packs and the soundtrack. This announcement includes a free-to-play launch trailer, while this announcement has all the details:

Independent developer Stunlock Studios announced today that team arena brawler Battlerite has now officially moved from Early Access to a full free-to-play commercial launch on Steam. To celebrate, the studio has unleashed a launch patch featuring a brand new champion, ‘Thorn,’ 200 new items including rare weapons, outfits, victory poses, legendary color variations and seven additional music tracks. Unlock and master a roster of powerful champions, fight side by side with your teammates in quick skill-based battles, and prove you deserve to stand victorious in the Battlerite arena.

“It’s been one hell of a year since we entered Steam Early Access and we can finally deliver on our promise to launch Battlerite as a free-to-play game, making it easily accessible to all PvP arena brawler fans to enjoy,” said Peter Ilves, Game Director at Stunlock Studios. “As of today, new players can join the Battlerite community for free in rapid fire, competitive battles requiring to prove your mettle. So jump in and show off your skills on the fighting ground. The arena awaits, brawlers!”

Enter Battlerite’s arena and engage in quick and intense action through highly competitive, rip-roaring 2v2 and 3v3 battles in a vibrant, colosseum-style surrounding. Control one of 22 champions that specialise in either melee, support, or ranged combat - from Bakko, the heroic brawler, or Jade, the long-range gunner, to Blossom, the ultimate team support. It’s all about skill-shots, timing, and reactions as you dodge projectiles and pull off massive ultimate attacks using intuitive WASD movement and cursor-based aiming. Team up with friends, smash in style, and triumph over the competition.

Each week players will get access to six unique champions on free rotation, allowing players to try out new playstyles and discover their favorites. Every character can be permanently unlocked with in-game currency or in-app purchases. As of today, the “Champion’s Pack” is available to unlock all 22 current and all future champions for $29.99/27.99€/23.79£.

Continue here to read the full story.

Total War: ROME II - Empire Divided This Month

Creative Assembly announces Total War: ROME II - Empire Divided, a new DLC pack for Total War: ROME II coming to the historical strategy game on November 30th. This will come along with a new Power & Politics patch which will be free for all owners of the game, and they say this overhauls the game's political system "to create a more subtle and intriguing experience with farther-reaching consequences." The DLC is already available for pre-purchase on Steam, while those interested in beta testing the new patch should read this update/FAQ which has details on how to get into the test. Here's word:

It is the crisis of the third century. A string of inept emperors and usurpers vying for power have torn the Roman Empire into three factions, and with barbarians and Eastern Empires ready to exploit the chaos, it's do-or-die time. On November 30th, players can reunite the empire or tear it down in this new, grand-scale campaign pack for Total War: ROME II.

Total War: ROME II - Empire Divided features a host of new content to give a new lease on life to ROME II; including 10 different playable factions, new victory conditions and new campaign features such as plagues, cults and banditry. Empire Divided also puts a heavy focus on telling the stories of the characters and powers involved in this rich and fascinating period.

Also joining Empire Divided on November 30th is the free Power & Politics patch update. This update overhauls ROME II's political system to create a more subtle and intriguing experience with farther-reaching consequences.

New HITMAN Plans

A post from Io-Interactive from Io CEO Hakan Abrak reflects on the launch of the HITMAN Game of the Year edition. He thanks customers for their support, saying this is how they have been able to thrive during their return to independence. He concludes with a mention of the next game in their assassin-for-hire series, though he says they won't share any details about this until sometime next year:

I also want to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you, in advance, to everyone who supports us by purchasing the GOTY Edition or the Upgrade. Your support will directly help us to continue on our independent journey towards the next Hitman game and beyond. We’re in this together and we promise that we will channel our passion and skills to shine through in everything that comes from this studio.

One last thing about our next Hitman game; I want to let you know that we’re making great progress and we have exciting new features and some franchise firsts, which we can’t wait to tell you all about. You’ll have to wait a little longer as we don’t plan to start talking about that until some point in 2018.

Continue here to read the full story.

Call of Duty: WWII's Big Launch

Activision celebrates the success of Call of Duty: WWII, saying their military shooter sequel earned over half-a-billion dollars during its three-day launch weekend. They make a favorable apples-to-oranges comparison to the launches of recent blockbuster films, and say it sold twice as many units as last year's Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare launch, so presumably nobody is complaining about player counts. Here's word:

Activision’s Call of Duty®: WWII has surpassed more than $500 million in sell-through worldwide in its first three days of release, topping popular theatrical box office openings Thor: Ragnarok and Wonder Woman combined, according to company estimates.

On PlayStation®4, Call of Duty: WWII set a record as the best-selling digital full game by units sold on its first day of availability. Overall unit sales at launch doubled year-over-year globally.

The gripping, personal narrative, boots-on-the-ground multiplayer and terrifying nazi zombies mode attracted players worldwide resulting in the highest total connected users on current generation consoles and PC in Call of Duty® history.

"We challenged our players to get their squads back together and they answered the call, with the highest number of players we’ve ever seen on current gen consoles and PC,” said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision. “Call of Duty: WWII returns the franchise to its roots and the results are incredible, selling twice as many units in its opening weekend as last year, and setting the day one record for full-game downloads on PlayStation 4. Our $500 million opening weekend was not only bigger than Thor: Ragnarok's, it was bigger than the opening weekends of both Thor and Wonder Woman combined. And we're committed to supporting the community with continuous improvements and new content.”

Figures include Call of Duty: WWII retail and digital sell-through, and reported movie sales, each for the opening three-days following initial launch, according to publicly-available data, retail customer sell-through information and internal Activision estimates. Digital downloads of Call of Duty: WWII is based on unit sell-through on first day of availability.

Command & Conquer Speculation

Greg Black tweets about his return to Electronic Arts, where he once worked on the Command & Conquer series with credits including Red Alert 2: Yuri's Revenge, Lord of the Rings: Battle For Middle-Earth II, Command & Conquer 3, and Red Alert 3. The last mention of him here was when he reflected on the state of the C&C series after he left EA, explaining how Command & Conquer 4 turned out how it did. GameWatcher notes his most recent project before this reunion was working at Blizzard on StarCraft II, and his return home has them speculating that we may yet see another RTS game in the C&C series. Greg isn't spilling any beans yet, saying simply:

Survived my first day back at @EA

It's a weird feeling being back after all this time. Can't wait to show you all what I'm working on. :)

Videogame Voice Actor Strike Ends

SAG-AFTRA announces its membership has voted to end the videogame voice-actor strike they declared over two years ago. A tentative agreement was announced in September, and now word is this was passed "overwhelmingly" by a nine-to-one margin, though the deal only covers the next three years. Here are the details:

In national voting completed today, members of SAG-AFTRA voted overwhelmingly to approve the successor to the Interactive Media Video Game Agreement by a vote of 90 percent to 10 percent.

The terms of the tentative agreement, which was reached on September 22, include a new bonus structure that provides additional payments to performers based on number of sessions worked. The bonus payments, which are due no later than the release date of the game, begin with an additional $75 payment on the first session and totaling $2,100 after 10 sessions worked.

The deal also contains new transparency provisions that will enhance the bargaining power of our members’ representatives by requiring the companies to disclose the code name of project, its genre, whether the game is based on previously published intellectual property and whether the performer is reprising a prior role. Members are also protected by the disclosure of whether they will be required to use unusual terminology, profanity or racial slurs, whether there will be content of a sexual or violent nature and whether stunts will be required.

In addition, the deal includes an employer commitment to continue working with SAG-AFTRA on the issue of vocal stress during the term of the agreement.

Continue here to read the full story.

Death Coming Leaves Early Access After One Day

NEXT Studio announces the early access for Death Coming they launched on Monday concluded yesterday, and the Windows pixel-art puzzle game is now officially available on Steam. This is an unofficial sort of official, as they say this is because they accidentally entered some sort of launch code which cannot be undone (thankfully they are not in charge of any nuclear weapon stockpiles). They call this "the shortest EA period ever," though it's hard to rule out the possibility this is all a publicity stunt, but their announcement does ask that we still judge this as an early access game:

"On Nov. 7th, we uploaded Version 426 after fixing bugs all through the night. However, at the same time, we accidently released the game unexpectedly! When we spotted this from comments by players, we found we could not go back to *Early Access*. Even though we are mad with ourselves, we have to accept this accident.

Just like our slogan: life is about accidents and how we face up to them. We will face it. In an unexpected way, we have jumped from beta test to releasing, but that doesn’t mean we have done our work. On the contrary, we are still doing our best to make it the best game possible.

Please still consider Death Coming as an Early Access game at least for the time being as we continue to polish the game and bug fix. Please continue to send us your report bugs and leave feedback on discussion boards and we will continue fixing bugs and making improvements based on your comments. Thank you for your understanding and support of the game!"

How to Infest Nioh with Mice

As was revealed last week, the newly launched Nioh: Complete Edition does not support mouse control. Now a post on DSOGaming details a workaround for this. It's not being pitched as perfect, but they point the way to a utility to allow the mouse to emulate a joystick. They note that this is not perfectly smooth, but does work, and the same utility can be used to add mouse support to other games where it is lacking.

Morning Patches

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Walking the doggies this week reminds me how much I hate standard time. Heading out at 5:00 pm before the clocks changed was already bad enough, as it was pretty much sundown by the time we got back. With daylight saving time concluded, it was dusk when we headed out at 5:00 on Monday, and pitch black by the time we returned. Yesterday I got out earlier, but it was still completely dark by the time we got home. We don't have many streetlights around here, so this is a problem. For now I'm carrying a flashlight to find camouflaged poop, but Jedi's mom has ordered LED collars for Jedi and the Gunnar-man to help make them more visible at night. The cool thing about the collars is that one setting flashes the lights, so we'll not only be more visible out there, but when boredom strikes we can disco. Now it's time to add the soundtrack from Saturday Night Fever, or at least A Night at the Roxbury.

Flashy Links: Thanks Ant.
Play: The Farmer 3D.
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‘F–k their wives’: Youth hockey coach fired after pregame rant.
Science: The EPA has approved the release of weaponized mosquitoes in 20 US states. "There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly..."
Brains get tired at the neuron cell level, a new study shows.
Study bolsters theory of heat source under Antarctica.
Images: 'Hell is here and now'- The real story of an elephant and her calf's disturbing escape photo.
When you know you're the good boy. To help counter the horror of the elephant photo. Thanks Kxmode.
Media: Gotta go fast! He's not even blue!
3D Zoetrope of Fish eating Fish.
SUPER MARIO ODYSSEY (React- Gaming).



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