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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

  

Steam Link for iOS and Apple TV

Valve announces that the Steam Link app is now available for iOS and Apple TV:

The Steam Link app, designed to extend Steam's suite of services and accessibility, is now available free of charge for iOS and Apple TV users (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/steam-link/id1246969117).

The Steam Link app allows gamers to experience their Steam library of games on Apple (iPhone, iPad, Apple TV) devices while connected via 5Ghz network or wired Ethernet to a host computer running Steam. The Steam Link app features support for the Steam Controller, MFI controllers, and more.

Ubisoft Financials - Skull & Bones Delayed

Ubisoft's fourth quarter misses company's expectations report Reuters in reflecting the company's Q4 results. Here's word: "French video game producer Ubisoft on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter net bookings of 676.7 million euros, below company’s expectations of approximately 698.0 million euros. Fourth-quarter sales stood at 516.5 million euros ($578.69 million), also missing the company’s target of around 571.0 million euros." The full-year 2018-19 earnings figures offer further detail. In a related note, Game Informer has word from their post-earnings conference call saying Ubisoft "revealed that three 'unannounced' titles will be arriving between January and March 2020," so you can breathe a sigh of relief if you were concerned the company would not be releasing games in the coming year. On the down side, Skull & Bones will not be one of them, as they note it's been delayed until March 2020 at the earliest.

Paradox Interactive Financials

There's a report on Paradox Interactive's Q1 2019 financials on GamesIndustry.biz noting that both revenue and profits are down year-on-year amid what the publisher calls "record high" investments at as they "focus on long-term growth and expansion in several of our core areas." Here are the specifics: "According to the company's Q1 2019 financial report, revenue for the period was down 11% year-on-year to SEK 238.3 million ($24.7 million), from SEK 267 million ($27.7 million). Meanwhile, operating profit for the period was down 55% year-on-year to SEK 62.7 million ($6.5 million) from SEK 140.5 million ($14.6 million)." They offer the following rundown on the company's game releases during the quarter:

While Q1 2019 saw fewer major game releases, it's slate of expansions for existing titles performed above expectations. Man the Guns expansion for Hearts of Iron IV sold more than any of the game's previous expansions during the same time period, a trend repeated with expansions for games such as Europa Universalis IV, Crusader Kings II and Cities: Skylines.

Bandai Namco Financials

It's earnings season, so GamesIndustry.biz also has full year fiscal reporting from Bandai Namco, who report increased sales and profits led by the gaming segment. Here's a rundown:

For the full year, Bandai Namco's net sales were up 8% year-over-year to ¥732 billion ($6.7 billion) and its operating profit was up 12% year-over-year to ¥84 billion ($770 million). This is all well above the company's guidance, which predicted sales would actually be down 4% to ¥650 billion ($5.9 billion) and a 20% lower operating profit to ¥60 billion ($550 million).

For the fourth quarter alone, Bandai Namco saw net sales of ¥204 billion ($1.9 billion) and an operating profit of ¥14 billion ($128 million).

Looking ahead to next year, the company is once again making lower predictions, suggesting ¥720 billion ($6.6 billion) in net sales (which would be down 1.7% year-over-year) and ¥70 billion ($640 million) in operating profit (down 16.7%).

Steam Summer Sale Next Month?

Steam Database tweets that the Steam Summer Sale start date has leaked "as per tradition," saying SteamCN reveals this to be June 25th, right after the actual start of summer. They say this is also "confirmed by multiple sources" (thanks PC Gamer). Word is:

🕶 Steam Summer Sale 2019 date leaked as per tradition, it will begin on June 25, 2019 at 10AM PST and will last for two weeks.

via SteamCN and confirmed by multiple sources.

Valve Trademarks DOTA UNDERLORDS

Speaking of Valve rumors, a trademark filing from Valve Corporation uncovered by PCGamesN is for "DOTA UNDERLORDS." The intent of this is not clear, but the listing of the goods and services this is for doesn't rule out a new Dota game, as they say this covers "Computer game software; Electronic game software; Video game software."

Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forest Released

Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forest is now available on GOG.com and Steam, offering a single-player turn-based RPG for Windows from the co-creators of Legend of Grimrock. Word is this is inspired by tabletop games: "Druidstone is a tactical, single-player, turn-based roleplaying game, which combines the best qualities of modern RPGs with the elegance of tactical boardgames. Every action, every turn counts as you control your party of heroes through handcrafted, challenging missions with varying, and often surprising, objectives." The release is accompanied by a new trailer showing off a full 15 minutes of gameplay. Here's more:

Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forest is a labor of love from the co-creators of the critically acclaimed Legend of Grimrock series. Druidstone is a tactical, single-player, turn-based roleplaying game, which combines the best qualities of modern RPGs with the elegance of tactical boardgames. Every action, every turn counts as you control your party of heroes through handcrafted, challenging missions with varying, and often surprising, objectives.

Set in a unique fantasy world, Druidstone is filled with ancient lush forests, standing stones, snow-topped mountains, deadly creatures and puzzle-ridden ruins. And somewhere in the middle of all of this, caught in the flow of events, are Aava, the archdruid's daughter, who must now shoulder his responsibilities, Leonhard, a warden with a mysterious past and a lethal destiny, and Oiko, the failed Red Priest who is living proof that one may be very smart without being particularly wise. Along the way, they meet companions and villains, whose unique personalities and abilities make every encounter memorable.

Continue here to read the full story.

Boss Crushers Leaves Early Access

Boss Crushers is out of Early Access on Steam, offering the official release of this Windows multiplayer Roguelike. A new gameplay trailer helps celebrate the news, and this post has details on all the changes that come with version 1.0. "It’s been a year since we published the first version of Boss Crushers," says Alexey Chernov, CEO at Space Horse. "We are extremely proud to be leaving Early Access with so many new features." Here's word on the game and the new version:

The Full Version of Boss Crushers contains new spells, new items, new locations, and new enemies and bosses. Experience death to gain experience and unlock all the content within the game.

Features

  • Multiplayer mode. Complete levels with your friends or strangers.
  • Hardcore bosses. Each boss possesses unique mechanics, behavior, and abilities. To defeat a boss, think like a boss, live like a boss, be a boss.
  • Random generation of the game environment. Each new run is a new labyrinth of rooms with a unique set of enemies and bosses.
  • High difficulty level. The game becomes difficult very quickly. You have virtually no chance of winning during your first attempts to beat the game.
  • Die to win. Your character is mortal, but each death does not go in vain – your battle experience benefits your mercenary guild.
  • Random character generation. Prior to venturing into a dungeon, you pick a mercenary with randomly generated characteristics, such as “drunken master”, “peterman”, “pyromancer” or “horsepower”.
  • Gradual unlocking of the game content. Unlock new items, skills, enemies and other game elements as you progress.

Continue here to read the full story.

Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines 2 Toreador Clan Trailer

GameSpot offers what they say is an "exclusive" reveal trailer for the Toreador Clan in Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines 2. Here's what they say about this latest look at the RPG sequel:

The next full-blood Vampire clan in Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 has been revealed by Paradox Interactive - Toreador! Also known as the Clan of the Rose, Toreador are creators of art and beauty known for their hedonistic ways.

Evening Patches

On Sale

Evening Interviews

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Previews

  • Total War: Three Kingdoms on IGN.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

SpellForce 3: Soul Harvest This Month

THQ Nordic announces a May 28th release date for SpellForce 3: Soul Harvest, the standalone expansion for SpellForce 3 that adds a new Dark Elves race to the strategy sequel. They celebrate the news with a new faction trailer showing the Dark Elves exerting their influence on the battlefield. The announcement and the clip have a distinctly zerg vibe:

They are different. They are a swarm. They serve something greater than you could ever imagine. The Dark Elves are here and their mission is clear: They will reap the souls of the fallen and reanimate their hulls as their servants. Will you join them or will you feed their appetite for blood? Watch the new faction trailer and pick your side! The stand-alone expansion SpellForce 3: Soul Harvest will launch on May 28th, 2019 on PC for an SRP of $24.99 | £19.99 | €24.99!

Features:

  • Build distinct heroes through various options and combinations on a skilltree
  • Lead your army to victory in a reworked sector-based RTS system
  • Use unique mechanics of your army units to win epic battles
  • Use flying units for even more advance tactics
  • Epic fantasy soundtrack and bleeding edge top down graphics

Multiplayer Features:

  • Each faction has two unique heroes that compliment individual play styles
  • A modern multiplayer lobby will allow easier matchmaking and ranked play
  • Create your own maps with the powerful modding tools.

New features compared to SpellForce 3:

  • All-New Campaign: Featuring new storyline with over 20 hours of content
  • All-New abilities and skilltrees for even more diverse heroes
  • All-New RTS Gameplay: Sector-based system with a focus on global resource distribution and unique faction mechanic
  • Unique mechanics and unique unit kits make the races feel very diverse and offer replay-value in the campaign
  • Flying units allow more tactical elements
  • New factions: Dwarves and Dark Elves
  • Overhauled UI makes the game more pleasant to look at and more readable

Continue here to read the full story.

Fighter Royale - Last Ace Flying Launches

Steam now offers the release of Fighter Royale - Last Ace Flying, a flying combat action battle royale game from Axion Ventures that challenges players to be the last pilot standing. Or, you know, flying. This free-to-play game is set in the south pacific, and puts you behind the yoke of World War II era aircraft in battle for air superiority in an ever-shrinking airspace. This teaser showing off gameplay is over a year old, and their is a series of short clips on various aspects of the game on their YouTube Channel, but they are all from about 10 months ago. Here's word on the game, including an unexpected Earth, Wind, & Fire pun:

FIGHTER ROYALE – LAST ACE FLYING is an arena style, air combat game of WWII dogfighting. You and up to 100 other players compete for supremacy in an expansive, 50 km world filled with opportunities to upgrade your plane and weapons, and tangle with other pilots. As the game progresses, the air combat space slowly shrinks, forcing players into close proximity and resulting in wild and unpredictable dogfights until eventually only one pilot remains: The Last Ace Flying!

The stage for this bogie wonderland is a South Pacific themed island chain, filled with volcanoes, narrow canyons, steep cliffs, military installations and an armada at sea gunning for you is designed to increase the intensity of the dogfights. Take out a bomber sortie or torpedoing an enemy battleship- the game world is full of juicy air, ground and sea targets- but the real challenge will be the other player pilots, and the innovative shrinking combat space ensures that players can’t simply avoid conflict- as the combat zone gets smaller you must engage the enemy to survive.

This isn’t just a dogfight… this is Fighter Royale!

Continue here to read the full story.

Tech Corp. Next Month

Publisher 2tainment GmbH and developer Mardonpol announce a release date for Tech Corp., saying this strategy simulation will come to Windows on June 20th. This will allow the player the chance to run their own tech startup beginning in the late 1990s. The game's Steam Listing is online, calling this an Early Access game, but offers no way to actually pick up a copy, and the game's announcement trailer only states that you can now wishlist the game. Here are some details:

With an in-game timeline starting in the late ‘90s and continuing on into the present year, Tech Corp. challenges players to take leadership of a small start-up. They’ll begin by choosing which country to launch the company, hire employees, develop, manufacture and launch their first product — then the worldwide tech industry takeover begins! Along with the ability to design, produce, and launch a variety of tech products, players are also responsible for taking them through to a successful global launch. Just about everything can be managed and customized in Tech Corp., from the memory space in a console’s hard drive to the logos on the cases for the video games players create!

Along with the design, production, and marketing of products, special apps similar to Steam, Netflix, Amazon, YouTube, and Spotify can be developed. With this, players create games, television shows, movies, YouTube channels, and music playlists for each respective platform — all of which receive real-time comments and feedback from the in-game public.

Continue here to read the full story.

Get a GWENT Card Keg and The Witcher for Free

GOG.com is offering those who subscribe to their newsletter a free Card Keg for GWENT: The Witcher Card Game (thanks DSOGaming). This offer also includes a free copy of The Witcher: Enhanced Edition for those who have not picked up this classic RPG already, as it has previously been given away for free more than once. The catch here is that you must already own a copy of GWENT, but that's a trivial concern, since that is a game you can pick up for free as well.

Morning Patches

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Like the escapees of the Matrix, I and many other Knicks fans hinged our hopes on Zion. But after the NBA lottery I'm like Morpheus. "I have dreamed a dream... but now that dream has gone from me." Actually, I don't follow college hoops enough to have a strong opinion on the draft class, I'm just taking the word of the experts on this. But with the expanded lottery, this could have been so much worse. So it's hard to deny things are looking up for Dolan's Dolts. With the third pick in the draft, a ton of cap space, and signs in the tea leaves the team may well sign some top talent free agents, things are about as optimistic for the Knicks as they could possibly be for a team that had the worst record in the league.

R.I.P.: Machiko Kyo, Japanese Actress, Dies at 95.

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