Archived News:

Tuesday, Jun 05, 2018

Blizzard Reveals "Unannounced Diablo Project"

The Blizzard Careers Website reveal that Blizzard is working on an unannounced Diablo project. They now have job listings for Dungeon Artist, Diablo and Environment Artist, Diablo, and each is listed under the heading of "unannounced project." Both listings talk about working in the Diablo environment, and come right out and say why right up top:
The minions of Hell are growing stronger...

We're working on a new, unannounced Diablo project.

New GeForce Drivers

NVIDIA announces the release of new GeForce version 398.11 WHQL drivers, saying these are game-ready for Jurassic World Evolution and Vampyr. Word is: "Our new GeForce Game Ready driver is optimized for Jurassic World Evolution and Vampyr, and ensures the best possible experience on G-SYNC HDR monitors." They also look to support everyone's enjoyment of these new releases with a "Jurassic World Evolution System Requirements and PC Graphics Settings Revealed" article and a "Vampyr 1080p, 1440p and 4K System Requirements" article.

Paradox Interactive Acquiring Harebrained Schemes

Paradox Interactive announces they are acquiring Harebrained Schemes, saying the BATTLETECH developer will take its place alongside their other internal studios. They offer details on the hows and whys of the move, and promise Harebrained fans who backed BATTLETECH on Kickstarter a free copy of Stellaris as a reward:
Paradox Interactive, a publisher and developer of interactive entertainment, today announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Harebrained Schemes, LLC, a Seattle-based developer of award-winning games set within genre-defining universes. Harebrained Schemes will now act as an internal studio and division within the Paradox organization, led by its own internal management and creative teams, designing and developing the games that have earned them their outstanding reputation.

Harebrained Schemes was founded in 2011 by industry veterans Jordan Weisman and Mitch Gitelman. Weisman is the creator of many acclaimed game universes including Shadowrun, Crimson Skies, and BattleTech/MechWarrior, and has founded several previous entertainment companies including FASA Corp, Virtual World Entertainment, FASA Interactive, 42 Entertainment, and Wizkids. At Harebrained Schemes, the partners-in-crime assembled a scrappy, talented team and shipped eight titles in seven years including the award-winning Shadowrun Returns series of CRPGs and the recently released turn-based strategy title BATTLETECH, published by Paradox.

“Harebrained Schemes have proven themselves as a world-class studio with a very talented team within a genre where Paradox wants to be present,” said Fredrik Wester, CEO of Paradox Interactive. “In addition, we really like the studio, the people who run it, and their games; these are all absolute hard criteria for us in any acquisition. Our recent successful launch of BATTLETECH, our first project together, has been a fantastic collaboration, but the possibilities of what we can do together in the long term now that we’ve joined forces -- that’s what has us truly excited.”
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Destiny 2: Forsaken Announced

Bungie, High Moon Studios, and Activision announce Destiny 2: Forsaken, a first expansion for Destiny 2, will come to the first-person shooter on September 4th. This will include a new gameplay mode called Gambit which they say they will unveil for the first time next week at E3. This reveal trailer features the developers discussing the news, and there are details in the announcement:
Bungie, High Moon Studios and Activision, a wholly owned subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, Inc. (NASDAQ: ATVI), revealed today that Destiny 2: Forsaken, the first major expansion of the award-winning Destiny 2 video game, will release worldwide on September 4, 2018. Destiny 2: Forsaken will be available for download on PlayStation®4, the Xbox One family of devices including Xbox One X, and PC. The PC version of the expansion will be available exclusively on®, Blizzard Entertainment's acclaimed online-gaming platform.

With two brand-new destinations to explore, and new weapons, armor and Supers to acquire, Forsaken takes players on an epic journey into the wild frontiers of our solar system where the lines between justice and revenge are blurred. Forsaken also features an all-new competitive and collaborative endgame activity, called Gambit. A first-of-its kind for Destiny, Gambit is a new, hybrid 4v4 mode that merges both PvE and PvP experiences into an epic battle. This entirely new way to play Destiny 2 offers something for all types of gamers to enjoy, appealing to those who thrive on the competitive challenge of PvP gameplay, while seamlessly blending the collaborative and unpredictable elements of PvE. This new mode will be playable at the 2018 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) held from June 12-14 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
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Battlefield V Specs Erroneous

Van Vitre‏ tweets that the recently posted system specifications were a placeholder, and are not accurate. This helps explain why they were exactly the same as the minimum specs for Battlefield 1. Here's word from the EA Vlobal Vommunity Vengagement Vanager:
Recently, incorrect minimum PC specs for #Battlefield V were published as placeholders. We haven’t announced our minimum or recommended specs for Battlefield V yet. Stay tuned!

Dota 2 New Ranked Season Tomorrow

The Dota 2 Blog announces a new season gets underway tomorrow in Valve's MOBA, discussing how this will work starting with a new calculation period:
The new Ranked Season of Dota will go live with tomorrow’s update. As we kick off the season, your new Ranked Medal will be calculated through a calibration period of ten games. This season’s calibration will allow for a substantial change in rank based on your performance during calibration, seeded by your previous rank. Your previous season’s medal will be displayed in your profile, alongside your new medal.

We’ve made some changes to the Ranked Medal system itself. You’ll now be able to see the progress on your profile medal, visible only to you, to track your advancement towards the next star or rank. Additionally, the steps between ranks go from 1 star to 5 stars, instead of 0 to 5. There is also a new tier of Ranked Medal exclusively for players positioned on the Leaderboards — designated as Immortal — to help more clearly distinguish the top players in the world. The Immortal rank does not have stars, just the explicit leaderboard ranking.

As always, Rank Medals represent your highest performance level for the current season, and a medal will never decrease in rank once you’ve earned it. Once you’ve calibrated your new ranking, there’s nowhere to go but up.


Early Access to MEMORIES OF MARS is now underway on Steam, offering a first opportunity to play Limbic Entertainment's Windows survival/adventure set on the red planet. The launch trailer shows off gameplay, emphasizing the game's shooter elements. Here's word on what else to expect:
Featuring a rich and vast environment to explore and introducing a unique “seasons” mechanic to enhance the competition of surviving the Red Planet, Memories of Mars sets the stage for an otherworldly gaming experience designed to keep gameplay fresh. In the unique Seasons, which sets Memories of Mars apart from other survival games, death will be inevitable for even the most skilled players as periodic catastrophic solar flares wipe the planet’s surface of all life and player-made infrastructures on an ongoing basis. Some of the talents and abilities learned through the season can be backed up and carried over by a series of clones, allowing players the ability to download previous memories of how to build and craft to get a head start on surviving the next season.

Memories of Mars will task players with surviving the harsh and unforgiving landscape of the Red Planet while building a habitable homestead and competing against other players and enemy NPCs for resources and opportunities. Players can team up to explore, gather resources and build defense bases or go rogue and explore numerous locations including abandoned terraforming towers, mining sites, caves, canyons, meteor impact sites and more. Seasons will also serve to make the map feel new, with familiar places rearranged in new locations, exciting points of interest never-before-seen, added blueprints for creating different weapons and modules, novel enemies, updated events and more.
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Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor - Martyr Released

Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor - Martyr has ended Early Access, and is now officially available on Steam, offering an action/RPG set in the Warhammer 40K universe. This post discusses some launch hiccups, offering an explanation, apologies, and compensation for effected players. This post covers the release and changes since early access for existing players. Here's word on the game:
Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr is grim action-RPG set in the violent 41st millennium, when the galaxy is at constant war. Become a mighty Inquisitor and carry out the Emperor’s will. Choose one of the multiple classes and take part in brutal combat encounters: embark on a huge variety of missions with your fellow agents and fight through the single-player story campaign set on a haunted fortress-monastery which hides a terrible secret from the past of the Inquisition.

Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn Released

Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn is now available on Steam, offering the Windows edition of the fighting game remake we can't recall anyone demanding. Here's a trailer showing off this rebirth, and here's word on the game and a special edition for true devotees:
Wired Productions is also offering extremely rare Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn Limited Collector’s Editions directly through its online store: This special bundle can be purchased with or without the full game and features a ton of exclusive goodies for fans, including a stylish Shaq Fu t-shirt, bag, snapback, art book, vinyl single and art card.

Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn is an action-packed beat ‘em up starring the one and only Big Diesel himself: Shaquille O’Neal. Battle the hordes of Hollywood and hell on a one-man journey to avenge your fallen home and martial arts master. Smash down foes with devastating combos, face off against outlandish celebrity bosses, and unleash your fury with a variety of hard-hitting weapons and power-ups.
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Vampyr Released

Vampyr is now available for Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4, offering a narrative-driven action/RPG from DONTNOD Entertainment. The Windows edition is available on Steam, and the recent launch trailer shows off the setting in London a century ago, and the game's protagonist, a conflicted new vampire. Here are more details:
In Vampyr you play as Dr. Jonathan Reid, a famous surgeon and blood transfusion specialist freshly turned into a vampire after arriving back in his home city of London following the Great War. A man of logic and science, Reid’s firm beliefs are turned inside-out upon awakening to a once-hidden world of secret societies, ungodly creatures and ancient orders set upon ending his existence. All the while, London’s population crumbles under the pressure of a terrible disease – and Dr. Reid may be the city’s last hope to stop it.

Everyone of Vampyr’s citizens is part of an interconnected social web, and the fate of one citizen in a social circle will impact all the others, as well as the direction of the narrative. Each citizen has their own story, life and personal goals, some will ask you for help, some will agree to sell you rare items – and every last one can be spared or sacrificed in Reid’s quest. Reid is a vampire, and the fastest way to evolve and unlock new supernatural abilities for combat is by drinking the blood of the living. In Vampyr, it’s not “Do I kill?” but “Who do I kill?”. Deadly encounters plague the doctor’s journey, and each citizen offers a tempting source of power… but there will be consequences.

Each of the four main districts have health status linked with the number of living, dead and sick citizens. By feeding sparingly and keeping the populace healthy with crafted medicines, balance can be maintained. However, if the health gauge drops too low, the district will be lost to supernatural creatures along with every quest, shop and citizen that once lived there. If every district of London falls, the game can still be played to completion, though with an outcome that suits such recklessness. Your actions will save or doom London.
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Does Vampyr Suck?

As mentioned above, Vampyr is now available, and reviews are popping up all over the internet. You can read evaluations of the game on:

CODE VEIN in September

BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment announces a September 28th release date for CODE VEIN, their upcoming action/RPG. They illustrate the news in a new trailer, and announce a God Eater crossover as a preorder incentive:
BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Europe are very pleased to announce the CODE VEIN™ standard and collector editions for Xbox One and PlayStation®4 ,as well as the digital edition for PC will be available 28th September, 2018.

The collector’s edition includes; the base game, an exclusive 17 cm figurine of Mia Karnstein with her deadly Blood Veil , digital content with access to the original soundtrack, a digital art book and an in-game customisation set - The Insatiable Bloodthirst for all characters.

Additionally, players who pre-order the game from participating retailers will be gifted with three crossover weapons from Bandai Namco’s successful IP God Eater. They will also get access to the special blood veil Venous Claw and the Accessory Set; including communication stamps for multiplayer, customisation elements for a new unique look and Harbinger - a blood code offering special characteristics to its owner.
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The Piano Released

Steam now offers the release of The Piano for Windows, a survival/horror game set in postwar Paris. Unlike the movie of the same name, this game does not feature a naked Holly Hunter. But it does feature a murder mystery, as shown in this launch trailer and the announcement:
Part traditional survival horror, part noir-influenced murder mystery, The Piano is an unsettling and riveting indie adventure more than five years in the making. It tells the story of John Barnerway, a young man born to an American father and a French mother, has he searches for answers on the streets of post-war Paris in the wake of his brothers' deaths.
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NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition Details

2K announces that LeBron James will grace the cover of NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition, offering a music video tribute to the hoops superstar to celebrate the news. This special version of the basketball simulation will be released on September 7th, offering a four day headstart on the Standard Edition, which will come on September 11th. Here are the details:
2K today announced that NBA 2K will feature three-time NBA Champion, four-time NBA MVP and avid NBA 2K gamer LeBron James on the cover of the NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition. The iconic cover features Akron’s favorite son alongside an artistic composition of words personally chosen by LeBron. Each phrase contains special meaning to James, including “Strive for Greatness,” “Driven,” and “Equality.”

“It’s humbling to be on the 20th anniversary cover of a game I’ve played and loved since I was a little kid,” said James. “We were able to do something really unique for the cover that represents everything that drives me and inspires me – from my family to where I come from and words I live by. I’m honored my journey can be part of this special time in 2K history and I’m excited for fans to see it.”

In addition to the exclusive James themed content and items, fans who purchase the NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition will receive the game four days early, beginning on September 7.

“This year marks the 30th anniversary for the development team at Visual Concepts and the 20th for the NBA 2K series, so it was important to commemorate this milestone by partnering with the most iconic athlete of this generation in LeBron James,” said Alfie Brody, Vice President of Marketing for NBA 2K. “LeBron’s carefully crafted wording on the NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition cover encapsulate the passion and drive that have elevated him to all-time greatness making him the perfect cover star.”

The NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition includes the following digital items:

  • 100,000 Virtual Currency;
  • 50,000 MyTEAM points;
  • 20 MyTEAM League Packs (delivered one a week)
  • Sapphire LeBron James MyTEAM Card;
  • 10 MyTEAM Heat Check Packs (delivered one a week beginning at the start of the NBA season)
  • 5 LeBron-themed murals for MyCOURT;
  • LeBron MyCOURT design;
  • King's Collection - Nike LeBron apparel & footwear (25 pairs!)

Physical Items include:

  • LeBron NBA 2K19 poster;
  • NBA 2K sticker sheet;
  • Custom Wristband featuring LeBron’s chosen words.

*Physical items not included with digital purchase

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RockShot Early Access

Early Access to RockShot is now available on Steam, offering a third-person shooter for Windows. The initial reviews for this are not so great, but the game is free-to-play, so it will be easy enough to judge for yourself if you want. The release trailer offers a look at the game's combat and base-building elements this includes, and the announcement has some details:
Gameforge — leading western publisher of popular free-to-play multiplayer online games SoulWorker, Elsword and NosTale — is excited to announce that Japanese game developer Soleil’s rowdy third-person shooter RockShot is now available on Steam Early Access in North America and Europe. Surprise Suckas! Anarchy reigns supreme in this strategic shooter where players rock and roll their way to victory in high-adrenaline competitive multiplayer firefights.

Prepare to squad up, defend your home turf and commit acts of stylish violence. The world of RockShot has been shattered by an orbital collision, and the only ones left alive are the ruffians, rockers and degenerates. Supremacy is the number one goal in RockShot, so teamwork is essential. Coordinate your attacks to strategically dismantle the opposition and expand your territories. RockShot isn’t for the faint-hearted, so nut up or shut up!
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Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

Uncomfortably soon after mentioning my tolerance of spiders residing in the BlueTower we had the exterminator over for an insect murder spree. I mentioned that we recently discovered carpenter ants in our deck, which were actually accompanied by a few sightings of their airborne counterpart, carpenter bees. The company that placed our termite traps was dawdling about coming to address the ants and said they don't deal with bees at all, so an impatient MrsBlue called the competition. The other guys do handle bees, and were able to send someone over right away, so hopefully the wooden portions of our house are no longer being eaten. When he came in to report on his project he explained that he had sprayed the perimeter of the house for everything, spiders included. So apologies to any of my eight-legged friends caught in the crossfire here... hopefully any of you who wanted to be in the house were already safely inside.

Poisoned Links: Thanks Ant.
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Car pulls out of rest area without looking. Some licenses should be revoked.
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