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Tuesday, Oct 09, 2018 Blue's News Anniversary (1996)


Microsoft Buying Obsidian?

Kotaku reports rumors that Microsoft is close to buying Obsidian Entertainment, saying this comes from three individuals briefed on the situation. One of their sources says the deal is 90% finished, with another saying "it's a matter of when, not if" the deal gets done. They are told this is part of an effort by Microsoft to bolster their PC gaming bona fides. For their part, the developer's signature sense of humor is on display in their statement on this, as an Obsidian spokesperson tells them: "Unfortunately, we don’t comment on rumors or speculation other than to say that the Rumors album by Fleetwood Mac still holds up."

Overwatch Halloween Event Begins

Blizzard announces the 2018 edition of their Halloween Terror event is now live in Overwatch, the multiplayer shooter. Here's a sizzle reel to show off the event and its new cosmetics, and here's word:

It is with great pride

The mad doctor and friends present

The cold, undead bride

Welcome back to Overwatch Halloween Terror 2018!

The event is now live on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One, so grab your largest candy bag, put on some spine-chilling music, and get ready to test your mettle against Dr. Junkenstein’s minions.

Junkenstein’s Revenge is back with a vengeance in two playable modes: Junkenstein’s Revenge (classic) and Junkenstein’s Revenge: Endless Night. Players can choose from 10 playable heroes, including Tracer and Brigitte for the first time this year.

Continue here to read the full story.

XCOM 2: War of the Chosen & Tactical Legacy Pack Released - XCOM 2 Free Weekend

Steam News announces the release of the XCOM 2: War of the Chosen & Tactical Legacy Pack for Windows, Linux, and macOS. To celebrate, XCOM 2 is currently free-to-play on Steam for the weekend. This trailer from last week offers an overview, and here are the details:

XCOM 2: War of the Chosen - Tactical Legacy Pack is now available on PC, Mac and Linux. As a gift to the fans, the XCOM 2: War of the Chosen – Tactical Legacy Pack will be available for free to all owners of XCOM 2: War of the Chosen until 12:59pm ET on December 3. If you're having issues downloading the DLC, please restart your Steam client.

This content requires ownership of both the base game XCOM 2, as well as the XCOM 2: War of the Chosen expansion.

Don't own War of the Chosen? Well, now's the time to buy! The expansion to the 2016 award-winning strategy game of the year is now on sale on Steam!

In addition to that, XCOM 2 is currently FREE TO PLAY right now on Steam! Have a friend who has yet to try XCOM 2? Now's the best time to get them in on the experience, with massive discounts extending across the game and all of its DLC.

Continue here to read the full story.

Space Hulk: Tactics Released

Space Hulk: Tactics is now out for PC and consoles, with the Windows version of the turn-based tactics game available on Steam. Last week's launch trailer offers a look at what developer Cyanide Studios and publisher Focus Home Interactive say is a faithful adaptation of the tabletop game. Here's the pitch:

On the side of humanity stand the Space Marine Terminators, genetically modified super soldiers clad in heavy armour and equipped with extraordinary firepower that turns them into effective walking tanks. Opposing them are the Genestealers, insidious inhabitants of the floating amalgamations of smashed-together starships called space hulks, hiding inside every pipe and duct, prepared to rend anything that comes close to pieces with glistening claws.

An innovative new card system gives players greater control over their forces, while two non-linear, narrative-driven campaigns tell a new, terrifying story in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. A full customisation system is available across four Space Marine chapters and four Genestealer Hive Fleets, letting you design your force down to the last shoulder plate or weapon hilt. A robust mission editor, inspired by the clip-together nature of building scenarios in the board game, means you can design, share, and play your own maps quickly and easily.

Continue here to read the full story.

Observation Announced

Devolver Digital announces Observation, a science fiction thriller coming to Windows and PlayStation 4. This is in the works at No Code, developer of throwback text adventure Stories Untold, and they are targeting a spring 2019 release. The Observation Website is online, offering this trailer with a chance to observe this in action. Here's what this is about:

Observation takes players on a suspenseful journey to the outer reaches of space to uncover what exactly happened to astronaut Dr. Emma Fisher and the crew of the space station Observation. The captivating narrative unfolds through the lens of the station’s artificial intelligence S.A.M. Players assume the role of S.A.M. by operating the station’s control systems, cameras, and tools to assist Emma in discovering what is happening to the station and the vanished crew.

Developed by veterans from studios Rockstar North, Rocksteady, Creative Assembly, CCP and IO Interactive, Observation has been crafted with precision to bring fans a groundbreaking narrative with stunning visual fidelity.

“Let’s get real, we’re five to ten years away from the machines taking over,” said Devolver Digital CFO Fork Parker. “Observation is just going to give a taste of what it will be like to converge their minds with that of a CPU before it all happens suddenly for real.”

Continue here to read the full story.

Shortest Trip to Earth Early Access

Early Access to Shortest Trip to Earth is now underway on Steam, offering a first chance to play this roguelike spaceship simulation for Windows. The game's "detailed and deadly universe" is on display in this trailer. "We are extremely excited to make our project available on Steam, having been in development for five years," says Edvin Aedma, lead designer. "Like my previous title 'Teleglitch,' 'Shortest Trip to Earth' will swiftly lead players into the hardcore survival zone. The game presents an atmospheric, rich world that rewards exploration and demands you to cope with deadly, often desperate conditions... or die in permadeath and start over." Here's more of what to expect:

Having received critical acclaim at the recent Gamescom 2018 show, Shortest Trip to Earth is a single-player game where the player explores a procedurally generated galaxy in the midst of an intergalactic war, rife with danger and secrets. Players will meet strange life forms and exotic planets while upgrading their ship and crew. The game will feature 1000 pieces of sci-fi art, catering for every unique encounter present in the game. Combat takes place in real time and permadeath ups the ante, adding weight to every action.

Continue here to read the full story.

The Sims 4: Get Famous Next Month

EA Maxis announces The Sims 4: Get Famous, another new expansion for their lifestyle simulation. As the title implies, this will allow everyone to experience their 15 minutes of fame when it's released on November 16th. Here's word:

The Sims 4 Get Famous, Sims can launch into celebrity status with an all-new acting career. They can catch their big break through a standout audition, landing a role in a television series or commercial gig. Aspiring Sims who go the extra mile by both looking the part and studying lines can take their career to the next level with a starring role in the next big blockbuster. Sims can also bask in the limelight as an inspiring influencer, livestreaming every lavish moment and giving other Sims maximum #FOMO, or even by gaining worldwide acclaim in their current career. No matter a Sim’s claim to fame, they’ll be able to attend exclusive parties with the stars, outrun starstruck fans, truly experience the VIP lifestyle of their dreams, and more.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Interviews

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

WWE 2K19 Released

The Windows edition of WWE 2K19 has leapt off the turnbuckle and has entered the ring on Steam, offering the chance to grapple with the new installment in this professional wrestling simulation. Here's word:

WWE 2K19 arrives as the latest entry to the flagship WWE video game franchise and features cover Superstar AJ Styles. WWE 2K19 will showcase a massive roster of popular WWE Superstars, Legends and Hall of Famers, as well as NXT favorites. Experience authentic WWE gameplay, extensive creation options, engaging match types, fan-favorite modes and much more!

Engage in the action through jaw-dropping graphics, heart-pounding excitement and thousands of new gameplay animations that enable you to experience WWE at a premium level.

Experience high stakes matches, talk smack to your opponents and shape your MyPLAYER’s career path as you strategize your way to WWE glory. An original story voiced by WWE Superstars makes WWE 2K19 the best MyCAREER experience yet!

YES! YES! YES! Relive the incredible journey of WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan – from his career-defining moment in the main event of WrestleMania XXX to his heartbreaking retirement to a triumphant return in 2018 – all told through the words of Daniel Bryan. Complete objectives to unlock playable characters, attires and arenas.

A new way to play – The all new 2K Towers! Take your favorite WWE Superstar or MyPLAYER into any tower with a gauntlet of matches that boast panic-inducing challenges, incredible stipulations, mind-blowing rule changes and dynamic difficulty, presented in ways you’ve never seen before in WWE 2K.

The WWE 2K19 roster is the biggest yet and loaded with your favorite WWE Superstars, Legends and Hall of Famers alongside your NXT favorites! Play as the WWE Superstars of today, such as AJ Styles, Brock Lesnar, Seth Rollins, Braun Strowman or Shinsuke Nakamura, as well as the legendary “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, The Rock, André the Giant and more! With more than 200 playable WWE Superstars, the amount of dream matches you can create is nearly unlimited!

OVERKILL's The Walking Dead Closed Beta

Starbreeze, Skybound Entertainment, and 505 Games kick off closed beta testing of OVERKILL's The Walking Dead, the new co-op multiplayer shooter that is unrelated to the Telltale's episodic The Walking Dead series which is now undead after the shutdown of developer Telltale Games. Word is the closed beta will continue until the game is launched on November 6th, and you can preorder the game or to participate, or preorder of the Deluxe Edition and get extra keys for your buddies. They also plan a livestream later today to celebrate the news:

Closed beta access is guaranteed with PC pre-orders of OVERKILL’s The Walking Dead, available now via Steam. Players who buy the standard PC version, priced at $59.99, will receive a single closed beta invite. Those who pre-order the game’s deluxe edition – featuring the full game, the “Night Raid” cosmetic skin pack, and a digital art book and soundtrack, all for $79.99 – will receive four closed beta keys to share with friends. As a bonus, all PC pre-orders will receive the bonus OVERKILL cosmetic skin pack.

Starbreeze is also hosting a special OVERKILL’S The Walking Dead closed beta livestream today at beginning at 18:00 CEST/12:00pm ET/9:00am PT.

Evasion Sneaks Out

Evasion is now available on Steam, offering a virtual reality first-person shooter that requires either a Vive or Rift headset to play. "Evasion was designed by a passionate team that wanted to create a memorable, AAA quality VR shooter," says Senior Producer Jennifer Dowding. "Evasion is an intense, action-packed experience, crafted over two years with core gamers in mind, delivering the kind of game we wanted to play in VR." The Evasion website has more details along with this launch trailer showing off what to expect. Here's more on what Archiact is shooting for with this release:

Powered by Unreal Engine 4 and featuring stunning sci-fi visuals, Evasion has been designed from the ground up to give players smooth locomotion while still delivering fierce “bullet hell” action. Evasion has both solo and co-op experiences, and features a story campaign where players have to save an embattled mining colony from a surprise attack by the lethal Optera, as well as a survival mode designed to challenge even the most hardened FPS veteran.

Players take on the role of the Vanguard, an elite special ops team that has four playable classes: the devastating Striker, indispensable Surgeon, versatile Engineer and unstoppable Warden. Each class has its own unique full-bodied avatar, weapons, unique tether abilities and devastating Surge Attacks. The PlayStation®VR version has support for the AIM Controller, which makes the gunplay even more satisfying and immersive.

Continue here to read the full story.

Left Alive in March

SQUARE ENIX follows their recently announced delay for Left Alive by specifying March 5th is now when to expect this survival shooter to show up on Steam and PlayStation 4. Here's a new release date announcement trailer and here are the details:

SQUARE ENIX® today announced that the brand-new survival action shooter LEFT ALIVE™, is releasing for the PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system and STEAM® on March 5th.

Created by veteran game developers, Toshifumi Nabeshima (director, Armored Core series), Yoji Shinkawa from KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS (character designer, METAL GEAR series), and Takayuki Yanase (mech designer, Ghost in the Shell: Arise, Xenoblade Chronicles X), LEFT ALIVE tells a dark and gritty story of survival from the perspective of three different protagonists as they struggle to escape the war-torn city.

Players who purchase the physical Day One Edition of the game will receive the bonus ‘Survival Pack’ DLC, which includes plenty of useful items to help players survive, such as the Ammo Pack, Light Body Armor, Recovery Pack, Klyuch Weapon, and Grenade Pack.

Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Patches

Morning Consolidation

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

  • ASRock Z390 Taichi Motherboard on TechPowerUp and TweakTown.
  • ASRock Z390 Extreme4 Motherboard on Vortez.
  • ASUS ROG Strix Z390-E Gaming Motherboard on Vortez.
  • Dell S2719DM Ultra-Thin FreeSync HDR Monitor on Tech ARP.
  • Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2080 Ti GAMING OC 11G Graphics Card on Guru3D and TechPowerUp.
  • MSI MPG Z390 Gaming Pro Carbon Motherboard on Vortez.


Out of the Blue

It was 20 years ago today that Sergeant Pepper taught the band to play. But it was 22 years ago today that this site moved to its own domain and officially became Blue's News. Over those two-plus decades we've discussed a lot of game news and indulged in a lot of puns and running gags. We've also hosted over 1.15 billion visits in that time without once posting a top 10 list, so here's a heartfelt thank you to all of you for visiting, commenting, submitting links, and basically making the whole process work. Here's to the next 22!

Anniversary Links: Thanks Ant.
Play: Interactive Horror Stories.
Stories: "Doctor Who" Scores Big UK Ratings.
Disaster averted at Household Hazardous Waste Clean-up Day. Thanks Devicer.
Science: Your Dog May Be Smart, but She’s Not Exceptional. Says Dr. Cat Lover. Thanks j.c.f.
Extreme heat of Vesuvius eruption vaporized body fluids, exploded skulls.
Giant, jagged 'ice spikes' cover Jupiter's moon Europa, new study suggests.
Media: Defying Gravity.
Young Dragon.
Follow-up: Myth-busting the self-shredding Banksy painting.

Monday, Oct 08, 2018

Heroes of the Storm Introduces Mal'Ganis

This trailer puts the spotlight on Mal'Ganis, who Blizzard reveals will be the next hero to join Heroes of the Storm, their MOBA. This describes the character's history from World of Warcraft, and introduces his kit as a melee warrior in the Nexus:

At long last, the manipulative dreadlord Mal'Ganis, deceiver of Arthas, is ready to put into motion his plans for the ripe, unsuspecting Nexus. Mal'Ganis is a life draining Warrior that specializes in disrupting his enemies to push an advantage for his team. Tread carefully when trying to outsmart a dreadlord, he'll twist fate at a moment's notice by evaporating into bats, or worse, making your life his own.

Continue here to read the full story.

Antigraviator Viper Trails Released

New Viper Trails DLC is now available for Antigraviator, adding new content to this Windows high-speed zero-gravity racer. Our dream that this would uncover the chemtrail conspiracy were dashed when we realized this wasn't called Vapor Trails, so we'll just hold out hope someone will make that. The Antigraviator website has all the details, the launch trailer offers a look, and word is the add-on is available on Steam and other places:

Publisher Iceberg Interactive and developer Cybernetic Walrus have released the first DLC for their hyper-fast racing game Antigraviator today. Antigraviator is an online multiplayer and single player racing game set in the far future where anti-gravity racing has become a sport complete with dazzling scenery, high tech machines, and unlimited speed. The DLC, titled Viper Trails, is out now on Steam and other digital retailers at an SRP of $5.99, offering a 10% discount for the week of launch.

Viper Trails rockets out the gate with a new trailer that introduces the sleek new Viper Class Grav vehicle to the game’s roster of ultra-fast, gravity-defying racers. Additionally, it showcases three new racetracks that wind between the forests and ravines of the Orval system. With a new racing mode, Hybrid Mode, the Viper Trails DLC also brings more variety to the speedways of Antigraviator. All tracks can also be driven in Mirror Mode, adding even more re-playability. Three new drum & bass tracks specially produced by Dutch electronic artist Alex Meza complement the new racetracks.

Continue here to read the full story.

DCS: F-14 Tomcat Preorders

The Fighter Collection & Eagle Dynamics announce the F-14 Tomcat is the next aircraft coming to DCS World, their aerial combat simulation. The DCS E-Shop has loads of details on the plane, and it is already available for preorder. Here's the announcement video along with more on the Tomcat and its appearances in theaters of operation and movie theaters:

The Grumman F-14 Tomcat was a two-crew, variable geometry, maritime air superiority fighter that served with the US Navy for 32 years and continues to serve with the IRIAF in Iran. The F-14 was the US Navy's frontline fighter from the 1970s until the mid-2000s. Over the course of its long service life it also became the US Navy’s premier precision ground-attack platform and lone airborne reconnaissance asset.

Outstanding features of the aircraft are the swing-wing configuration, crew of two, and the powerful AN/AWG-9 Weapons Control System (WCS) and radar. The AWG-9 allows employment of the powerful AIM-54 Phoenix air to air missile while the LANTIRN pod allows the ability to carry out precision ground strikes using laser guided bombs. The F-14 Tomcat was present during many pivotal historic moments such as the two Gulf of Sidra incidents, Operation Desert storm in Iraq, the conflict in Yugoslavia, Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom. It was also immortalized in the iconic motion picture, Top Gun, and starred in several other feature films including The Final Countdown, Executive Decision, and others.

Continue here to read the full story.


With just over a week to go before the release of SOULCALIBUR VI, BANDAI NAMCO offers a new trailer called Swords and Souls that's part one of a series on the rise of the fighting series. Here's an overview of this overview:

With over 20 years of history stemming from the arcades, moving onto consoles, and now days away from launching on the most powerful generation of gaming hardware in video game history, SOULCALIBUR has always presented ground breaking weapons-based gameplay that has captured the souls of gamers. With SOULCALIBUR VI launching on October 19th, we wanted to take a moment to look back at the origins of the franchise, only by knowing our history, can we hope to achieve a better future.

Continue here to read the full story.

Car Mechanic Simulator 2018 Adds Porsche DLC

Steam now offers new Porsche DLC for Car Mechanic Simulator 2018, the Windows auto repair and tuning game. This adds the following four cars and four engines from the iconic German automaker:

Porsche DLC includes 4 licensed Porsche cars:
- 1993 PORSCHE 911 Turbo S (964) 3.6
- 1993 PORSCHE 911 RS America (964) 3.6
- 2016 PORSCHE 911 Carrera S (991.2)
- 2003 PORSCHE Carrera GT

- Boxer 3.0 Twin-turbo 420 HP
- Boxer 3.6 Turbo 360 HP
- Boxer 3.6 260 HP
- V10 5.7 DOHC 40v

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Consolidation

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Minecraft Releases Open Source Libraries

The Minecraft Website offers some of the Java code for Minecraft as an open-source libraries (thanks Kotaku Australia). Of course this doesn't mean just anyone can make a game as modern as Mojang's cutting edge sandbox, but on can always dream. What these can do is allow mod authors to use some of the game's functions to improve their mods. They offer a few libraries to get started, and say there are more on the way:

Making games isn't easy. Sure, it's not rocket science, or brain surgery (those things are probably waaaaay easier), but it's still incredibly difficult to learn to code, program and sheer-blind-luck your way into making a videogame. If only you had access to more resources…

Well, the lovely folks on Stockholm's Minecraft Java team are giving you just that, by opening some of Minecraft's code as libraries so they can be used however you like! Want to use them to improve your Minecraft mods? Great idea! Want to use them for your own projects? Go for it, just don't forget to credit us! Want to use them to help improve pieces of the Minecraft Java engine? Thanks, we really appreciate it!

Hang on, what even is a game 'library'?

“Libraries are little parts of the game engine,” explains Java developer, Nathan Adams (also known as Dinnerbone). “We're making some of the self-contained libraries that Minecraft uses open source. Anyone can pick them up and use them in their own game.”

The plan is to open up different libraries gradually. These libraries are open source and MIT licensed, which means that “basically, anyone can go in there and they can contribute and they can help improve our game engine,” Nathan explains.

“Or, if they're making their own game, they don't have to rewrite these little parts. They can just use ours, which have been tried and tested because we're a very popular game, apparently!”

U.K. Sales Charts

GfK Chart-Track offers the following outlook on their new charts tracking last week's videogame sales in the U.K.: "The start of Q4 sees ‘FIFA 19’ retain the top spot while Ubisoft’s ‘Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’ creeps in just ahead of ‘Forza Horizon 4’ as they take No2 and No3 respectively in their debut weeks. Nintendo also make the Top 5 with their new release ‘Super Mario Party’ in at No5, as Microsoft’s Forza bundle see ‘Forza Motorsport 7’ re-enter the chart at No12. Further down the chart we have a couple more new releases with Sega’s ‘Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise’ in at No21 and Sony’s PSVR title ‘Astro Bot Rescue Mission’ just one position below." Here's the all platform chart with all those high-profile debuts, and here's the PC top 30 chart, which doesn't offer the same fireworks. Here's the PC top 10:


Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

Today is the celebration of Columbus Day here in the U.S. Columbus did not actually discover America, he did not prove the world is round, and by most accounts was responsible for some heinous acts. He did, however, discover Columbus, Ohio, direct Richard Benjamin and Ali McGraw in Goodbye Columbus, and of course, manage the Columbus Clippers to several minor league championships, and thus, is still celebrated.

Celebratory Links: Thanks Ant.
Play: Raven.
Science: Major Climate Report Describes a Strong Risk of Crisis as Early as 2040.
Gene Editing Causes Complete Collapse of Mosquito Population in 'Major Breakthrough' for Disease Eradication. Thanks LinkedIn.
Media: Great post fight interview. NSFW.
This 360-Degree Video Of Alex Honnold Climbing El Capitan Without Any Ropes Will Take Your Breath Away - Digg
You better do that CONGA. Poodle power!

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