Archived News:

Friday, Jul 13, 2018

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Beta Next Month

Activision and Treyarch announce two different beta tests on three different platforms will be part of the run-up to the launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 on October 12th. They are planning a multiplayer beta for the shooter sequel for Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 next month, and a test of their Blackout battle royale mode in September. There's a post from Activision Community with the dates, saying the PC beta will be open to anyone with a Battle.net account from August 11-13, while customers who preorder the game will get an day's headstart on August 10th. This confirms a previous report that the PC beta would not require a pre-purchase. As for the Blackout beta, they promise more details near the end of summer. There's also a post about this on the Treyarch Blog where they go into more detail about the game, including a discussion of specifics about the PC beta:
Working in partnership with Beenox and Blizzard, the PC Multiplayer Beta will be exclusive to Battle.Net.

“The PC beta will continue the dialog between us and our players. Every piece of feedback helps us to deliver the most balanced, most fun and most polished Call of Duty you have ever played on PC,” said Co-Studio Head, Mark Gordon. “Through our partnerships with Beenox for development and with Blizzard providing us with infrastructure, tools and network – we are bringing a custom experience to PC.”

As previously reported by @TreyarchPC, getting the game into the hands of players provides the studio team the chance to communicate directly with the players: player data helps inform development decisions around performance, the process of fine-tuning specs, and the optimization of features. And this is even more important given the amount of customization developed to accommodate the widest range of hardware possible.

For information about the PC Beta, follow @TreyarchPC for updates and information along the way.

More on Fortnite Season 5

A new video from Epic Games discusses what's new in Fortnite's battle royale mode in the just-launched Season 5. Word is: "Season 5 is here and we're talking weapon and Storm changes, updates to acquiring Progressive Outfits and we have a little treat for you audio fans." Continue here to read the full story.

F1 2018 Classic Cars Revealed

Codemasters offers a new trailer from F1 2018 with a reveal of the lineup of classic racecars that will be part of the next installment in the Formula One racing simulation. This blog post has more details on the plan, as well as the full list of "new classic" cars. Here's more:
These cars include James Hunt’s legendary 1976 championship winning McLaren M23D and Niki Lauda’s Ferrari 312 T2, both of which featured in the hit movie ‘Rush’ (2013). They are joined by two Championship winning Lotus cars: Emerson Fittipaldi’s 1972 Lotus and Mario Andretti’s 1978 Lotus 79. The 1979 Ferrari 312 T4, as driven by Jody Scheckter as he beat teammate Gilles Villeneuve to the title, and the 1982 McLaren MP4/1B driven by John Watson and Lauda make up the class.

In addition to the six historic cars from the 1970s and 1980s, Codemasters has announced that all twelve classics that featured in F1 2017 will also return for this year’s game. The line up is completed by the two modern classics from the 2000s (2009 Brawn BGP-001 & 2003 Williams FW25) that are available in the exclusive Headline Edition of F1 2018 at launch, and later as DLC*.
Continue here to read the full story.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: Wimbledon- Anderson beats Isner in third-longest men's singles tennis match ever. Final set was an unbelievable 26-24.

New AMD Drivers

AMD Support now offers new version 18.7.1 Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition drivers for AMD graphics cards (thanks Bill). These add support for Earthfall, promising significant performance improvements for the just-released co-op shooter. AMD offers the following lists of what these do and do not fix:
Fixed Issues

  • Fortnite™ Season 5 may experience an application hang on some Radeon graphics products when throwing stars are visible on screen.
  • Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice™ may experience flickering or corruption on some Radeon graphics products.
  • Display modes may sometimes appear as not available when setting resolution or refresh rates of a display.
  • CorelDraw™ may experience slower than expected performance.
  • Memory clocks may remain at higher than expected values on some displays after changing resolution or refresh rates.
  • Some displays may exhibit black screen flickering when booting to desktop when using DisplayPort.

Known Issues

  • Virtual Super Resolution settings may not retain after updating to this Radeon Software release.
  • Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus™ may experience an application crash when disabling Asynchronous Compute via game settings.
  • Graphics and memory clocks may remain at higher than expected values after watching a video or using Windows DVR while in game. A workaround is to reboot the system.
  • Cursor or system lag may be observed on some system configurations when two or more displays are connected and one display is powered off.
  • Radeon WattMan gauges may report as zero on secondary graphics products in multi GPU enabled system configurations.

Earthfall Lands

Earthfall is now officially available for Windows on Steam, as the co-op shooter popped up a day before its planned release today. The launch trailer shows off the game's Pacific northwest setting and Left 4 Dead-style gameplay. This post discusses the game's graduation from Early Access:
Earthfall is out! Today is the day we have been waiting for two years to hit. Tons of blood, sweat, and tears went into making Earthfall what it is today as well as a fantastic amount of support from the community that supported us during Early Access. We sincerely can't thank everyone who bought Earthfall and participated in Early Access. Make sure you check out the exclusive Early Access skin!

Now that we are out, we are starting to focus on post-release content! We have some great idea of what we can do, but we want to hear what you think we should be doing next! So make sure you tell us here on Steam, via the Official Earthfall Discord [discord.gg.com], or the Official Earthfall Forums [forums.earthfall.com] and allow other users to upvote it!
Continue here to read the full story.

Remnant: From the Ashes Announced

Speaking of Left 4 Dead, four-player co-op is one of the features publisher Perfect World Entertainment announces for Remnant: From the Ashes, is in the works at Darksiders III developer Gunfire Games. This is a postapocalyptic survival shooter coming next year to Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. An official announcement trailer shows off the setting, and the Remnant Website is online as home to the project. Word is they will debut the game at Gamescom next month, and in the meantime, offer the following details:
Today, Perfect World Entertainment, Inc., a leading publisher of live service games, announced Remnant: From the Ashes. In development by Gunfire Games, the studio behind Darksiders 3, Remnant: From the Ashes is a survival-action shooter featuring dynamic worlds, intense combat and strategic co-op. The game transports players to a bleak future where Earth has been overrun by extradimensional beings. Humanity's last hope for survival is to flee to alternate dimensions for safety, and to uncover what these mysterious beings are after. Remnant: From the Ashes is scheduled to release in 2019 on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation®4.

“Perfect World Entertainment jumped at the opportunity to partner with Gunfire Games,” said Yoon Im, senior vice president of publishing at Perfect World Entertainment. “Their deep expertise in creating fantastical worlds, steeped in rich sci-fi themes make them the perfect partner to expand our company’s portfolio of live service games. Remnant: From the Ashes will deliver a unique, dynamic world that provides an infinite number of ways to explore and combat enemies. We know players will love our twist on the survival-action genre.”

“Remnant: From the Ashes is about working together to build something bigger than yourself, and that idea is core to our approach to the game,” said David Adams, co-founder of Gunfire Games. “Perfect World Entertainment has been supportive of our pursuit to develop a game with a robust co-op experience. The company’s live service knowledge coupled with our signature gameplay and world building, enables us to develop an immersive world that we hope players will enjoy solo or together, for years to come.”

Remnant: From the Ashes is a third-person survival-action game set in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by mythical creatures. Players build characters to suit their individual playstyle and survive the perils of diverse and deadly environments, alone or alongside a team of up to three other players. The game offers unique, customizable gameplay experience filled with intense shooting, melee combat, gear and weapon crafting, character progression, deadly enemies, epic bosses and dynamically-generated levels that offer an infinite number of ways to explore.

  • FIGHT. ADAPT. OVERCOME. – Each world will present new challenges and perils to overcome. Throughout their journey, players will encounter dozens of monsters unique to each environment. Fight tooth-and-nail against creatures both big and small - from towering behemoths the size of buildings to countless hordes of small, deadly terrors. Adapt… or die trying.
  • EXPLORE FANTASTIC, TERRIFYING REALMS – Explore beautiful, dynamically-generated worlds – each with their own unique creatures and environmental challenges. Gain experience and adapt new strategies to survive the dangers of each world.
  • CRAFT. UPGRADE. SPECIALIZE. – Band together with others to improve chances of survival. Protect and befriend skilled tradesmen and offer them the safety of a home base. In turn, they will offer valuable skills and resources for upgrades, crafting and enhancements for weapons and gear.
  • STRENGTH IN NUMBERS – The Root are ruthless and deadly. To stand a chance, players will need help - they need a Team. In Remnant: From the Ashes, players can group with up to three other survivors. There are multiple hero archetypes to choose from, each designed with unique skills and advantages to help the group survive.

Remnant: From the Ashes will make its public debut with fully playable hands-on demos at Gamescom (August 21 – 25, 2018) & PAX West (August 31 – September 3, 2018). Visit the Perfect World Entertainment booth to play the first demo and meet development team members.

Continue here to read the full story.

Free Battlefield DLC

The Battlefield Twitter feed announces that Second Assault is available for free to all Battlefield 4 owners who pick up the DLC pack between now and July 17th. Likewise, they also announce the Turning Tides DLC is available for free for all Battlefield 1 owners during that same period. This shows how close they are to the planned October release of Battlefield V, and to draw more attention to that EA offers this article sharing hands-on impressions from closed alpha testing of the upcoming World War II shooter. Here are quick blurbs on the two free DLC packs:
Second Assault brings back four fan-favorites that are more challenging than ever before. What’s better than playing on classic Battlefield 3 maps? Playing those maps updated with the power of the Frostbite 3 engine!

Storm the beaches of Gallipoli with the Allied forces or defend the Ottoman Empire’s fortifications at Cape Helles. Continue the battle at the Achi Baba hilltop in an intense infantry-focused push. Engage in epic naval clashes between the British Empire Royal Marines and German Navy in Heligoland Bight. Take part in the daring British raid at Zeebrugge with rough waves and a vast German mole. Battlefield 1 Turning Tides extends your arsenal by introducing the new L-Class Destroyer (ready to rule the waves in naval combat) and the new C-Class Airship (to deliver death from above).

Morning Previews

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Thanks Ant.

Out of the Blue

Happy Friday the 13th! What, you think that's supposed to represent bad luck? Well, what if I told you it is National French Fry Day, which offers the opportunity to score free French Fries. In that case, the only bad luck is if you don't live near one of the places celebrating with giveaways. According to that article, this kicks off a comfort food weekend, as tomorrow Mac & Cheese Day and Sunday is National Ice Cream Day. Not sure who is responsible for declaring these "official" "national" dates, but I suspect it may be a pharmaceutical company that manufactures statins.

Lucky Links: Thanks Ant.
Play: Battle Simulator.
Stories: Build-a-Bear shuts down one-day 'Pay Your Age' sale. Thanks LinkedIn.
Criterion Plans 39-Film Bergman Blu-ray Set.
The ‘Rick And Morty’ Soundtrack Is Coming Out On Sub Pop. Thanks RedEye9.
Science: Supermoon Solar Eclipse On Friday The 13th Is ‘Bad Luck’ For Most People.
Optical cochlear implants restore hearing in deaf gerbils. Thanks Slashdot.
Slime Molds Remember — but Do They Learn? Thanks Devicer.
How People Created Ice in the Desert 2,000 Years Ago. Thanks Max.
Media: Wingsuit Jump Through Clouds.
The Insane Logistics of Formula 1.
Building A Swimming Pool Around Underground Primitive House.
Follow-up: Giant Hogweed Plant Sends Virginia Teenager to Hospital with Third-degree Burns.
Johnson & Johnson told to pay $4.7 billion in baby powder case.
The Funnies: Brevity.
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