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Friday, Feb 02, 2018 Happy Groundhog Day

Cortex Command Free on Steam

Steam News announces a limited-time opportunity to pick up a free copy of Cortex Command. Here's word on this Windows and macOS side-scrolling strategy game:
A project over eleven years in the making, Cortex Command has rich 2D pixel graphics coupled with an extremely detailed physics engine, which allows for highly replayable and emergent real-time action. There is also a turn-based strategic campaign mode which ties the tactical fights together, featuring persistent terrains that will accumulate the battle scars, debris, and bunker ruins through your entire campaign.

Choose from several unique technology factions, each featuring their own sets of expendable soldier bodies, mechas, weapons, tools, and landing craft. Protect your brain, mine the gold, and destroy the enemy cortex in his bunker complex!

Dungeons 3 DLC Released

Kalypso Media announces new Once Upon a Time DLC is now available for Dungeons 3, the latest installment in this series where it's good to be bad. Here's a launch trailer, and here's word:
Evil spell book, check. Torture kit, check. Sunscreen, check. Exploding sheep, erm, check! That’s right, the Absolute Evil is taking a well-earned vacation and is heading to Fairyland in the all new Dungeons 3 DLC pack Once Upon a Time available to download today for PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox One. Once Upon a Time is the first of three new DLC packs coming for the critically acclaimed and devilishly fun Dungeons 3 and further expands the Absolute Evil’s grip on all that is good and wholesome.

Fairyland is a despicable place and is home to the Good Fairy, a disgustingly respectable and virtuous creature who has been arming heroes with invigorating potions and is generally the detestable source of all good deeds. With the help of some bewitched heroes (and more than a few exploding sheep) the Absolute Evil sets off to put an end to this story once and for all.

Once Upon a Time brings to the Dungeon table three new campaign maps, three new Evil hubs, new wall tile set for the dungeon and an all new boss – the Good Fairy. For a taste of what’s in store check out the launch video below, lovingly crafted by the best creative snots in the Dungeon for your viewing pleasure.
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Far Cry Season Pass Details

Ubisoft announces details about the season pass for Far Cry 5, giving details on three surreal DLC packs this will bring, as Far Cry 3 Classic Edition, a remastered version of the single-player content in that installment in the shooter series. They accompany the information with a new trailer highlighting the Far Cry 5 story and an announcement trailer for the Far Cry 3 Classic Edition. The Classic Edition will also be a standalone release this summer, but the version that comes with a season pass will precede it by four weeks. Here's word on the surprising settings of the game's DLC:
Far Cry 5 will take you to the Montanan wilderness of Hope County, where The Project at Eden's Gate cult is preparing for the end of the world, reaping souls through questionable and often violent means. But your Far Cry 5 journey doesn't end there (nor does it stay on the same planet, for that matter).

The Far Cry 5 Season Pass includes three new adventures that transport you to three distinct locations, starting with Vietnam, where you battle the Việt Cộng in Hours of Darkness. That's followed by Dead Living Zombies, which as its title suggests, pits you against zombie hordes in a variety of B-movie scenarios. Finally, in Lost on Mars, you'll leave Earth behind to battle arachnids on the Martian surface.

If you prefer familiar surroundings, Far Cry 3 Classic Edition (single-player content only) is also included in the season pass, and will be available four weeks prior to it going on sale as a standalone purchase this summer on PS4 and Xbox One. Visit (or revisit) the Rook Islands and come face-to-face with Vaas, one of gaming's most notorious villains, played by Michael Mando. Don't fret, PC Players, as you will also receive the full version of Far Cry 3 when you purchase the season pass or gold edition of Far Cry 5.

Stay tuned for more on Far Cry 5's post-release content plans, including more details on the three separate adventures and the map editor. Far Cry 5 is scheduled for release on PS4, Xbox One, and PC on March 27.
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Valve's Cliffe Arrested; Suspended

Jess Cliffe, the Valve designer who co-created Counter-Strike, was arrested yesterday for sexual exploitation of a child, reports KIRO-TV. The report says he was booked, and is awaiting a bail hearing today, but confusingly also says he has not been charged with any crime. Police are not saying if an actual child was harmed, and the report notes Cliffe has no criminal record, though they say they've found a record for an assault case against him that was dismissed in 2013. Valve gave a statement on this to Kotaku that says they have suspended Cliffe while they figure out what is going on. Valve says:
"We are still learning details of what actually happened. Reports suggest he has been arrested for a felony offense. As such we have suspended his employment until we know more."

Space Hulk: Tactics Announced

Blood Bowl developer Cyanide Studio announces a further collaboration with Games Workshop on development of Space Hulk: Tactics, a turn-based tactical game they call "a brand new take on the Space Hulk experience. They say they will be unveiling this further later this month at Le What's Next de Focus press event in Paris. For now they offer a few screenshots and the following details:
After successfully bringing Blood Bowl, the classic board game by Games Workshop, to Consoles and PC with two faithful adaptations, Cyanide Studio is proud to take on another fan favourite from the Warhammer 40,000 universe with their turn-based tactical game, Space Hulk: Tactics!

Bringing a unique twist to the classic gameplay of the cult board game, engage in bloody battles through an immense Space Hulk - a twisted mass of asteroids, wrecked ships and debris – as either a squad of Terminator Space Marines or the deadly alien Genestealers. Which side will you choose?

Battle through two distinct, narrative-driven campaigns, from the points of view of two different factions: one campaign puts you in control of a Blood Angels squad, which you will customise and upgrade as you progress, while the other puts you in control of the Genestealers for the first time in a Space Hulk game!

Space Hulk: Tactics is based on the rules of the popular board game, given a fresh new spin in the form of the unique Card system. Cards give more ways to customize your squad before a match, and allow you to turn the tides of battle with abilities that trigger game-changing effects when used at the right moment.

Test your skills against other players in the expansive online competitive multiplayer, letting you command a swarm of Genestealers or a custom squad of different unit types from one of four Space Marine Chapters – the Blood Angels, the Space Wolves, the Ultramarines, and the Dark Angels. Multiplayer modes and tools offer a rich and deep online experience, and include an intuitive map creation tool, which gives players everything they need to create original maps with custom objective, and share them with other players to play either online or against the AI, all from within the game!

Rainbow Six Siege Year 3 Content Detailed

Ubisoft offers information on Operation Chimera for Rainbow Six Siege, which will kick off the first season of year three content for the tactical shooter. Accompanied by this trailer, the post includes the following details:
Rainbow Six Siege's first season of Year 3 content kicks off on March 6 with the release of Operation Chimera on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Chimera features two new Operators – Lion and Finka – who represent French and Russian counter-terrorism units, respectively, as biohazard specialists. Along with traditional, competitive Rainbow Six Siege multiplayer matches, these new Operators will see their weapons and gadgets put into action in Outbreak, a new four-week co-op event that starts March 6.

They won't be alone. Lion and Finka will be joined by Smoke, Ying, Buck, Kapkan, Ash, Doc, Tachanka, Glaz, and Recruit as playable Operators sent to Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. The town has come under attack from extraterrestrial parasite – called the Apex – that has transformed much of the local population into horrific creatures, forcing the government to set up a quarantine zone around the town and prevent the spread of the parasite. A team of three Operators will be tasked with not only entering the quarantine zone, but also destroying the infestation at its source.

Outbreak will have two different difficulty settings: Normal and Pandemic. Both are designed to encourage communication and coordination to succeed against the Apex and the different types of monsters lurking in the quarantine zone, but Pandemic introduces stronger enemies and friendly fire, making positional awareness and communication all that much more necessary to complete an incredible challenge. Additionally, players will have to make smart use of barriers and fortifications to defend against an enemy that doesn't mind taking a few bullets as it rushes its target.

Three exclusive co-op levels will also be featured in Outbreak. Since these levels are designed from the ground up for the co-op experience, they're larger and more open than the game's competitive maps. Additionally, while they're designed to give players a clear sense of progression, these stages will retain Rainbow Six Siege's trademark destruction elements, creating opportunities for alternate paths and tactics when the situation calls for it.

Want to learn more about Chimera and Outbreak? Be sure to visit the official Rainbow Six Siege site and tune into the Six Invitational Finals livestream at https://www.twitch.tv/rainbow6 on February 18 and 19.
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More Destiny 2 Destiny Outlined

A new weekly update from Bungie offers a new roadmap for updating Destiny 2, covering plans to patch the shooter over the coming months. Here are some details:
Update 1.1.2 went live on Tuesday, infusing the player experience with Armor Masterworks and Raid Mods. Rewards have been restructured for Leviathan and Eater of Worlds completions, too! For a full rundown on patch notes, make sure to sort through the bullets.

On Wednesday, part two of the Fall of Osiris webcomic series became available. Right here on Bungie.net, you can follow the continuation of the story.

We’ve also mapped the road ahead, plotting a course through the coming months with a full schedule of updates. Christopher Barrett provides commentary for upcoming changes, with some insight as to what you can expect for the future of Destiny 2. Take a peek, and sound off with your thoughts. Something you’ve been talking to us about might be on the list.

With all that has been said and shipped this week, we have many new questions to tackle. When’s the next Sandbox update? Have you heard our feedback about movement in Destiny 2? What about Shoulder Charge?

Read on if you want to know more.

Alaska Released

Wreck Tangle Games (I see what they did there) announces the release of Alaska on Game Jolt, saying the adventure game will make its way to Steam on February 9th. They describe the game's similarities to Firewatch, and offer this trailer to illustrate the point. The official website has all you need to know about this, and the following excerpt from the press release provides more northern exposure:
The game has been particularly thought out to make sure you feel emotion towards the people of the small town you are a part of, as the first half of the game will lull you into a relaxing love letter to Alaska. You will feel a true feeling of acceptance in the community as you fish, hunt, ice skate and chop trees with your neighbours, and as you start fitting into the daily life of an Alaskan, you almost forget about the looming darkness that is about to unfold in the second half of the game.

The game concentrates heavily on character interactions which help you to really feel for the people of this small town. As you get to know them, bond with them, it really will pain you to see these characters hurt. Another addition of the hefty character build up, has you thinking early which member of this community is most likely to snap.

Challenges are scattered through out Alaska to break up the walking and talking, these are depicted as mini games. These include fishing on the river, ice skating on frozen lakes, chainsawing a tree and, a mini FPS section of, hunting. These really break up the heavy story and make the game challenging and rewarding.
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Insurgency: Sandstorm Trailer

A new teaser trailer from Insurgency: Sandstorm takes a look at this upcoming modern combat first-person shooter. The clip is filled with fast cuts of war imagery that make it feel a bit like a PTSD episode. The description of the clip is especially brief: "Fight across a modern battlefield in Insurgency: Sandstorm, expanding the original Insurgency formula, all while retaining its lethal tactical action!" Continue here to read the full story.

Heroes of the Storm and Overwatch Lunar New Year Events Next Week

A tweet from Overwatch announces the Lunar New Year event is returning on February 8th, celebrating the Year of the Dog. The tweet includes a 10 second video that will not change your life. Blizzard also takes to the Heroes of the Storm Website to announce the return of the Lunar Festival in their MOBA. Each event involves special loot themed to the occasion, and HotS also has a special brawl and a Lunar Festival quest planned.

Hardware Reviews