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Wednesday, Sep 12, 2018 National Video Games Day


Gone Gold - Forza Horizon 4: Demo Released, Bond DLC Revealed

Major Nelson announces the Forza Horizon 4 demo is now available as a play anywhere release for Windows 10 and Xbox One. This celebrates the news that the racing game is now gold and on track for its October 2nd global launch. Word is this will be supported by the release of a James Bond car pack with the iconic Aston Martin DB5 and other exotic autos from the film series. Here's word:

Forza fans, we’re one huge step closer to the launch of Forza Horizon 4. Today, we’re announcing that the game has officially gone gold and is off for pressings of retail discs and final setup for digital release. As Playground Games readies the game for launch – early access begins on September 28 for Ultimate Edition owners, and global launch beginning on October 2 – we’re celebrating the best way we know how: with brand new information on the game and the release of the Forza Horizon 4 demo worldwide! We start with the details of the Forza Horizon 4 Day One Car Pack, featuring one of the most legendary universes in cinematic history.

Best of Bond Car Pack
We are thrilled to announce the Best of Bond Car Pack as the Day One Car Pack for Forza Horizon 4. The pack is included as part of the Forza Horizon 4 Ultimate Edition and will be playable with early access to the game, beginning on September 28. Players will also be able to purchase the Best of Bond Car Pack separately at the global launch of the game on October 2.

Assetto Corsa Competizione Early Access

Publisher 505 Games and developer Kunos Simulazioni have launched Assetto Corsa Competizione into Early Access on Steam, offering a first chance to play this racing simulation that is the official game of the Blancpain GT Series. They seek to inspire early participation by offering what they call a "buy-now, save-later" incentive, saying the $24.99 USD Early Access price tag is "a fraction of the launch price" in Q1 2019. They offer a roadmap of monthly content releases that also maps out planned intermediate price jumps along the way. They also provide a new trailer and the following details:

After the groundbreaking worldwide success of Assetto Corsa, which redefined the standards of the Sim racing genre, the Italian development team KUNOS Simulazioni is ready to deliver to its amazing community the first Early Access version of their latest game.

Assetto Corsa Competizione is born from KUNOS Simulazioni’s long-term experience, and it takes full advantage of Unreal Engine 4, ensuring photorealistic weather conditions and graphics, night races, motion capture animations, reaching a new standard in terms of driving realism and immersion, thanks to its further improved aerodynamic models.

The immersive sim game will allow players to experience the real atmosphere of the FIA ​​GT3 homologated championship, competing with official drivers, teams, cars and circuits, reproduced in-game with the highest level of accuracy ever achieved. Sprint, Endurance and Spa 24 Hours races will come to life with an incredible level of realism, in both single and multiplayer modes.

Continue here to read the full story.

Destiny 2: Forsaken - The Last Wish Raid Friday

Bungie announces The Last Wish raid will go live in Destiny 2: Forsaken on Friday at 1:00 pm EDT. The news comes with a brief Last Wish Raid Trailer that promotes the event with a 24 second cinematic. The announcement is similarly short: "Assemble a team… Send them into the heart of the City. Kill that creature and extract its heart. The Last Wish Raid goes live on Friday, September 14 at 10AM PT. The riches of the Dreaming City await those who are victorious." Continue here to read the full story.

STONE Next Week

Convict Games offers a new trailer from STONE that includes 15 minutes of gameplay from this "Hip-Hop Stoner Noir" adventure coming from these veterans of Remedy Entertainment and Riot Games. They also put down the bong long enough to announce the game is coming to Steam next week, though something distracted them before they specified an exact date. The drug, alcohol, and tobacco use depicted make this a Mature 17+ rated game, so it's possible the release is prompted by the recent implementation of Valve's new mature content filters. Here's word on the clip: "We have a 15-minute video with VO from studio-lead Greg Louden that runs down how STONE plays, discussed the game’s inspirations and shows off some of the side content." Here are more details on the game from back when it was announced, revealing that it will actually be early, since next week will still be summer in these parts:

World, it’s time to meet STONE. He’s a koala. He’s a dick. He’s hungover. And he’s coming to Steam for PC and MacOS later this fall.

STONE is a Hip-hop Stoner Noir Adventure Game that follows a gruff, loveable, fat koala private investigator as he pieces together his fragmented memory of the debaucherous night before. As if his morning couldn’t get any more stressful, Stone receives an ominous call threatening to upheave his entire life, just as he realizes his “chookie” Alex, a lorikeet raver and artist, is nowhere to be found.

Continue here to read the full story.

AS+CEND Early Access This Month

Whimsy Games announces AS+CEND will ascend to Early Access on Steam in the ass-end of this month, specifying September 26th as a launch date for the 6DoF space shooter. Here's a trailer which is dated June 22nd, and the announcement we received about inadvertently reveals they actually planned on an Early Access launch in August. The video shows off combat in the game's indoor environments, and the announcement has more details on this descent into nostalgia:

AS+CEND features intense omnidirectional combat -- learn to master it as the battlefield shifts from deliberate engagements of deadly intent to frantic fights for your life. Utilize intuitive controls that allow you to move your craft in six degrees while aiming and firing your weapons with confidence. Keeping your shields up and oriented to your opponent is the key to survival. Yet securing victory will require risking exposure to launch your own devastating assaults. With a wide array of weapons and an ever expanding toolkit, combat in AS+CEND is a thoughtfully frenetic experience.

In AS+CEND, each side of your ship has it's own shields and equipment, requiring focus to prevent a well-placed barrage of shots on an exposed side from crippling your vessel, and skill to launch your own devastating assaults on others. Whether you're a quick study who's able to learn these new tools on the fly, or a student of patient persistence who seeks to master the one perfect weapon or ship, victory is hard-earned and incredibly satisfying.

Beyond the wide array of kinetic and energy weapons, there are a number of special abilities that you can use to mix up the gameplay and throw your enemies off-balance, from ability modules to qualities intrinsic to the ship's frame itself. Whimsy Games is working hard to bring even more tools of destruction to the table, including new weapons, abilities, and ship frames.

AS+CEND Features:

  • Intense 3D PvP space combat
  • Unique and challenging omnidirectional combat
  • A large array of weapons, abilities, and ship frames
  • A constantly evolving toolkit

Continue here to read the full story.

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Into the Black

Happy Video Games Day. Also, happy 15th birthday to Steam, as the service first launched on September 12, 2003. Coincidence? Well, yeah, probably.

Battlefield 4 Premium Membership for Free

Battlefield 4 Premium Membership for PC is now free on Origin, just like the free Battlefield 1 Premium Pass mentioned last night (thanks MP1ST). This includes various perks for the World War II shooter, primarily free access to five expansion packs. Also included is priority server access, exclusive customizations, bonus content, and 12 Battlepacks. Here's more on what this offers to Battlefield 4 owners:

You've got Battlefield 4. Now it's time to truly dominate the warzone with Premium Membership.

Premium Membership unlocks in all the great extra content from Battlefield 4 Premium Edition. Get all five expansion packs and dive into all new modes across 20 new maps. Plus grab 12 bonus Battlepacks, priority position in multiplayer server queues, and access to exclusive Double XP events.

Hello Halo 5? Microsoft Says Goodbye to Windows Rumors

CNET has a statement from Microsoft that throws cold water on recent speculation that Halo 5: Guardians was headed to PCs. The conjecture was based on new box art for the Xbox One version, but a Microsoft spokesperson tells them this is off-base: "As we've shared previously, we do not have plans to launch Halo 5: Guardians on Windows 10 PC." They also delve into the mixed messages about Windows prospects for Halo Infinite, which is not certain either. Sometimes it seems like someone should remind Microsoft that they are the ones who actually make Windows.

Circle Empires Gets Free Content Update

A new free update is available for Circle Empires on Steam, rounding up some new content for this Windows and macOS real-time strategy game. This post has extensive details on the new version, which includes balance tweak, usability improvements, Korean localization, and bug fixes as well as the new stuff. Not content with all that, publisher Iceberg Interactive and developer Luminous promise another update will come this month to add Linux support as well. Here's the overview:

Amongst the many improvements being made, the free update adds new units, buildings and locations to the game. Later this month Circle Empires will also receive full Linux support.

In Circle Empires players must conquer a procedurally generated world made of interconnected circles. Circle Empires was released August 8 for PC and Mac and has been enthusiastically received by the community, with very positive review ratings on Steam.

The content update adds a new unit, Hammermen. Leaders will now have workers of their respective species. For example, if you start the game as Puck the Pumpkin King, you will now have pumpkin workers. Zombies will now also function as workers.

New buildings which spawn dragons and wizards are also added in this the update. In addition to new buildings, there are now more circle types to conquer, as two new biome variations have been added: Dragon Lairs and Wizard Studies. New rare biome variations with large armies of hostile units are also added in this update.

Difficulty has been increased for Easy and Normal mode. Both modes now have more monsters to fight.

Also included in this update are Korean localization, many bug fixes, unit and leader balancing and UI improvements. For a detailed list of these changes, please visit the Circle Empires Steam forums.

War of Conquest Early Access Next Week

IronZog LLC announces that War of Conquest will enter Early Access on Steam on September 20th, squeaking out during their summer release window by about 48 hours. They have been putting the open-world strategy game through its paces already with a beta test for Kickstarter backers, and now they are preparing to allow more gamers to help steer it toward its eventual release. Here's word, including details on their prior War of Conquest game that this follows:

War of Conquest is a free-to-play massively multiplayer real-time strategy game that puts the player in control of one nation in a vast fantasy world occupied by thousands of other players’ nations. The goal is to build up the nation’s technological and magical abilities, as well as the player’s skills, in order to compete to capture the mysterious Orbs of Power scattered throughout the landscape. The journey will entail battling over land and resources, developing advances, forging alliances, and constructing and upgrading a wide variety of defensive structures.

The Kickstarter campaign for War of Conquest wrapped up in October 2017 and exceeded its goal by raising $8,698. War of Conquest is a reimagining of an earlier game by IronZog that went by the same name. The original War of Conquest ran from 2002 through 2011, had over 200,000 players and developed a cult following that continues to be a presence on social media years after the game went offline. Many fans of the original came back to support the Kickstarter and have been taking part in beta testing over the past year.

SOULCALIBUR VI Cervantes Trailer

A new reveal trailer for SOULCALIBUR VI shows off the return of Cervantes to the fighting series. No need to tilt at windmills if you want to know more, as the clip comes with some details:

A pirate’s life can only be described as one long sailing adventure, filled with enough twists and turns to last multiple lifetimes. So, imagine the stories of adventure and swashbuckling Cervantes must have since he’s been sailing the seven seas as an immortal pirate since forever!

Cervantes is a bad man in every sense of the term. Wielding dual swords – Acheron which he plundered from its former owner, and Nirvana, a dagger whose hilt houses a pistol – Cervantes is simply deadly with these blades, especially when he rushes opponents, knocks them down, or launches them in the air in order to deal hard-hitting combos for maximum destruction and pain.

All this power is not without its drawbacks as Cervantes is cursed to pursue Soul Edge for eternity, drawn to the sword’s power, his life intertwined with the fate of the cursed blade.

Continue here to read the full story.

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Out of the Blue

The forecasts for Hurricane Florence just seem to get more and more dire with every revision. We can only hope that this turns out to be one of those cases where they get it wrong, and that this turns seaward rather than landward. Either way, we also hope that everyone in the path manages to evacuate as needed. Good luck.

TMI Links: Thanks Ant.
Play: Round Rivals.
Links: 'Smokey and the Bandit' to return to theaters as a tribute to Burt Reynolds.
Stories: Hurricane Florence track turns south, expected to slow on Carolinas.
Paul McCartney and John Lennon masturbated together. Come Together.
Science: Hurricane Florence Isn't Alone: 4 Powerful Storms Seen from Space in 1 Day. Thanks Capella.
How Trees Secretly Talk to Each Other in the Forest. Thanks Kxmode.
Sea Cucumber Poop Is Surprisingly Good For the Ecosystem. Poop warning. Thanks Kxmode.
Media: Gamer Tags - Epic NPC Man (ridiculous player names) - Viva La Dirt League (VLDL).
Spider-Man Old vs New (2000 vs. 2018) (React- Gaming).
The Collapsible Crash Test Robot Car.

Tuesday, Sep 11, 2018

Battlefield 1 Free Premium Pass

EA now offers the Battlefield 1 Premium Pass for free, access to the game's expansions that normally costs $49.99. This post has the details:

The Battlefield™ V Open Beta is now over, and we know it’s left a huge, 64-player hole in your heart. Not a problem, because the Road to Battlefield V continues with the Battlefield™ 1 Premium Pass becoming absolutely free* for one week only, starting now.

This offer will let Battlefield 1 owners play everything Battlefield 1 Premium Pass has to offer: They Shall Not Pass, In the Name of the Tsar, Turning Tides, and Apocalypse. If you’re not familiar with these, don’t fear – we detail each right below the download information.

Insurgency: Sandstorm Delayed

The insurgency is coming, as publisher Focus Home Interactive announces a new December 12th release date for Insurgency: Sandstorm, New World Interactive's upcoming first-person shooter remake. They planned on releasing this next week, but are taking extra time for improvements based on feedback from the preorder beta. That beta will continue on until release, and they are extending the loyalty discount for owners of the original Insurgency through the end of March. This post has more on the news, including details on some of the changes they plan to make with the extra development time. "Despite the game’s improvement, we are acutely aware that not all of you are having the ideal experience we want to deliver. By extending the beta and moving our launch date to December, the additional time will allow us to make significant improvements to the game with continued input from you," they explain. "The additional time allows us to target a lower minimum system requirement, address more bugs, work on overall polish, gather additional feedback from the community to refine gameplay, and ensure that highly requested community features which may otherwise have had to be added post launch (such as community servers and custom games) are ready for day 1." They offer this list of major goals:

  • Upgrade to Unreal Engine 4.20 and continue optimizing
  • Improve the character models, textures, and animations in the game
  • Improve the “scoped” experience for both high and low-quality scope settings
  • Improve the level visuals, gameplay and optimization
  • Add more cosmetic item variations and a new forearm tattoo cosmetic type which can also be seen in first person
  • Expand in-game server options to include a server browser, community-run server support, and a custom games system allowing users to specially configure games hosted by our server infrastructure.
  • Refine the game to the point it has far less bugs, glitches, visual inconsistencies and other issues.

Strange Brigade DLC and Free Maps

Rebellion now offers Bash, the first season pass character for Strange Brigade, their pulp era action game for Windows and consoles. The PC version is on Steam, where Bash is also available for purchase for non-season pass owners. This also comes along with free content as they offer new maps for all owners of the game. This post has details on the free maps and Bash, illustrated by a bunch of screenshots. They also send along a roadmap of all the free content and DLC they have planned:


Texas Cowboy Character Pack

  • Patrick 'Bash' Conaghan playable character
  • Wrath of Quetzalcoatl amulet attack


  • Score Attack - Harbin's Dig Path II
  • Score Attack - Hidden Valley II
  • Score Attack - Tunnels of Wadjet II
  • Horde map - Palace


Continue here to read the full story.

Endless Space 2 Adds Free Renegade Fleets Content

Amplitude Studios announces the release of a free Renegade Fleets update for Endless Space 2 on Steam. This adds a bunch of new content to their Windows and macOS space strategy game, the payoff the milestones players achieved during their recent free weekend for the game. They promised the new content if players racked up a million hours of play time, a total they almost tripled. The new content consists of six new fleet skins, which come along with their AI Modding update, which is now out of beta. And for those who've been holding out for this moment, the game and its additional content are on sale for the next 48 hours. Here's a trailer showing off what's new. Continue here to read the full story.


BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment announces a delay to ONE PIECE WORLD SEEKER, saying the open-world ONE PIECE action/adventure will be released in 2019 after previously being expected next year. The announcement simply explains they think the game needs more time:

BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment America Inc. has announced that ONE PIECE WORLD SEEKER will be shifting its release date to 2019. The game will be available for the PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One, and PC via STEAM®.

The action-adventure gameplay of ONE PIECE WORLD SEEKER introduces a new way to experience the world of ONE PIECE. The development team feels as though a bit more time is needed to reach fan expectations for this ambitious title. More information regarding the ONE PIECE WORLD SEEKER release date will be made in the future.

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NBA 2K19 Tips Off

2K Games now offers the release of NBA 2K19, the latest installment in their basketball simulation for Windows and consoles. The PC side of this is covered on Steam, where you can buy the standard edition or the premium 20th Anniversary Edition which includes various extras. You can find all the details on the NBA 2K19 Website, or just lace up your Air Jordans and read on for more:

2K is proud to announce that NBA® 2K19 is now available to fans across the globe. Celebrating 20 years of redefining what sports gaming can be, from best-in-class graphics and gameplay to groundbreaking game modes and an immersive open-world “Neighborhood,” NBA 2K19 continues to push limits as it brings gaming one step closer to real-life basketball excitement and culture.

“NBA 2K19 represents the culmination of over two decades of development and innovation from the development team at Visual Concepts,” said Greg Thomas, president of Visual Concepts. “It’s exciting to be at the forefront of sports gaming by evolving the franchise year after year, and we can’t wait for our community to experience it for themselves.”

NBA 2K19 features improvements and additions to all aspects of the game, ranging from a more immersive MyCAREER, to a redesigned MyTEAM, to an increasingly dynamic Neighborhood, all of which are tied together by a soundtrack produced by one of the most talked about musical artists, Travis Scott. NBA 2K19 promises to be developer Visual Concepts’ most ambitious product to date, with the key aim to provide the most well-rounded basketball simulation experience possible.

NBA 2K19 delivers dynamic new features including:

  • Take Control with Takeover: Harness your MyPLAYER’s full basketball potential with the new Takeover feature. Unlock special moves and abilities never before seen on the court, or activate Team Takeover and unleash the power of your full squad.
  • Run the Neighborhood: You won’t want to miss a single day in the updated Neighborhood. Make a name for yourself on the court, at the Under Armour Cages, and during live events on the block. Ball until dawn with new day to night transitions, walk on at the Jordan Rec Center, or get the old Crew back together for exciting 3 on 3 streetball action.
  • MyTEAM: Create your very first MyPLAYER card, and ball with LeBron, Kobe, and the rest of your collection in a variety of competitive modes. MyTEAM players can now test their skills in the NBA 2K19 MyTEAM Unlimited $250,000 Tournament, which will run October 13, 2018-February 13, 2019. The tournament will be played using the new MyTEAM Unlimited Mode, which features 5-on-5 NBA-style gameplay and allows users to choose any 13 cards from their Collection.
  • All New MyCAREER: From Neighborhood legend to global phenomenon. The original career story mode returns with an all-new, immersive narrative charting your journey from China to the G League and eventually the NBA. Featuring an all-star cast, endorsements tied to your popularity, and new team chemistry elements that allow you to dominate the hardwood.

Featuring LeBron James on the cover, the NBA 2K19 20th Anniversary Edition includes the NBA 2K19 game, 100,000 Virtual Currency, MyTEAM cards, LeBron-themed digital items for MyPLAYERs and more for $99.99 MSRP. Giannis Antetokounmpo is featured on the cover of the Standard Edition, available now for $59.99 MSRP. NBA 2K19 is rated E for Everyone by the ESRB.

Spintires: MudRunner Expands This Fall

Publisher Focus Home Interactive and developer Saber Interactive announce an American Wilds expansion is coming on October 23rd to Spintires: MudRunner, their offroad driving game. This will be available separately for owners of the original game, or as part of a new bundle that includes the game and the expansion. This teaser trailer goes full Arnold on the concept, showing as Humvee climbing a muddy hill. Here's the plan:

The American Wilds Expansion features a number of highly-requested additions, including 2 new sandbox maps inspired by the rough lands of Montana, North Dakota and Minnesota, new challenges to tackle, and seven of the most iconic US trucks from household brands including Hummer, Chevrolet and Western Star.... This means a total of over 30 vehicles, 60 add-ons, 10 sandbox maps and 11 challenge maps in the Spintires: MudRunner – American Wilds Edition, which brings together the new expansion, base game and DLC content.

Overcome muddy terrain, raging rivers, and other obstacles that realistically react to the weight and movement of your vehicle, powered by the game's advanced physics engine. Armed with your map, compass, winch, and driving skills, go solo or join up to three others in the coop multiplayer. On PC, download mods created by the passionate community for truck-loads of content and an ever-evolving Spintires: MudRunner – American Wilds experience.

The American Wilds Expansion, as well as the American Wilds Edition that includes the base game and all of the previously released DLCs will release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on October 23 and for the first time on Nintendo Switch in November.

Continue here to read the full story.

God Eater 3 Early Next Year

BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment announces a release window for God Eater 3, saying the Windows and PlayStation 4 action/RPG sequel is due in the Americas in "early 2019." The news comes with a new Tokyo Games Show trailer featuring Japanese voice-overs and English subtitles. Word is: "The intense 3rd person action gameplay of GOD EATER 3 is punctuated by a dramatic storyline which is highlighted in its newest trailer, which can be found at the following YouTube link:" Continue here to read the full story.

Steam Getting Uncensored Anime Game Friday

A tweet from Dharker Studios reveals that Valve has approved their Negligee: Love Stories for release on Steam this Friday with no censorship (thanks DSOGaming). This will be the first such release since Valve announced plans to accommodate such content without putting off those with more delicate sensibilities. Word is: "Steam have given the official thumbs up... Negligee: Love Stories will be releasing this Friday 100% uncensored on Steam." The tweet includes a Steam link that you must sign in to view after acknowledging your consent to possibly be offended, and the game's description outlines how far this goes: "Negligee: Love Stories features four story-lines that frequently include dialogue of sexual themes, sexual interactions and nudity and through them illustrations featuring nudity, undressing and sexual interactions as well."

Call of Cthulhu One Hour Gameplay Video

Do you like scary movies? Well Eurogamer kindly points the way to a new trailer from Call of Cthulhu, showing off the upcoming horror game based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft. This features developer commentary from Cyanide Studio and includes almost a full hour of gameplay, so how much of the game you're willing to spoil should factor into whether you choose to view this. The description offers a nice overview of the game, which is due next month for Windows and consoles:

About Call of Cthulhu:
Private Investigator Edward Pierce is sent to investigate the tragic death of the Hawkins family in their imposing mansion on the isolated Darkwater Island, off the shores of Boston. Between unfriendly locals and dubious police reports, it becomes clear there’s more to the case than meets the eye. Soon enough, Pierce is plunged into a terrifying world of conspiracies, cultists, and cosmic horrors.

Hidden passageways, nightmarish asylums, illegal bars, and seemingly-abandoned warehouses make up Darkwater’s scattered geography. Originally supported by a now long-dead whaling industry, the island is home to only desperate old sailors and decaying families of old money with nowhere else to go. They do not like outsiders.

Faced with terrors beyond human comprehension, you must delve deep into the secrets that lay beneath the surface of the Darkwater Island community. Speak with the island’s inhabitants, overcome deadly horrors and discover cryptic clues, in a desperate attempt to expose the terrible truth at the heart of the Hawkins case.

Investigation comes in many forms. Will you talk to characters to learn their secrets, or look around on your own? A friendly ally may provide a much-needed distraction or reveal a path to progress but picking a lock or stealing a key is equally viable.

Despite his experience in the Great War, Pierce is not a fighter, and you will need to find solutions to your problems that don’t involve a fist fight or gunning down the inhabitants.

Continue here to read the full story.

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