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Wednesday, Jun 12, 2019

  

Origin Access Basic Free Trial

EA celebrates their recently concluded EA Play event by offering a free seven-day trial of Origin Access Basic:

CELEBRATE EA PLAY WITH 7 DAYS ON US
The best way to celebrate is to keep gaming. Get a 7-day free* trial of Origin Access Basic & dive into a growing library of 211 PC titles. Try new games days before launch with Play First Trials, save 10% on all digital purchases and play as much as you want.

Steam Redesign Shown

A post on Steam offers a look at the upcoming redesigned user interface for Valve's online gaming platform. They offer images of what this looks like, and directions for content providers to upload new assets to fit the new format. Word is they are weeks away from a public beta:

In March at GDC we announced that the Steam Library is getting an overhaul. The new Library brings together a player’s experience with a game and new content/communications from the developer and community in a richer, more visual layout.

You can start uploading and previewing the new assets today

We are weeks away from the public beta of this new feature set; now is the time to start uploading new assets for your updated library presence. Download the library asset templates here

Steam will create a fallback treatment for both the capsule and header treatment, but adding your branding assets is the best way to showcase your products in your customer’s Steam libraries.

This treatment will apply to all products on Steam, so we encourage you to back-fill older products so they look their best.

Field of Glory: Empires Next Month

Slitherine announces July 11th is the release date for Field of Glory: Empires, the 4X grand strategy game in the works at AGEod. The news is accompanied by this trailer, which they say will teach you everything you need to know about the new game in about two minutes. Here's word:

Field of Glory: Empires is coming on July 11th

AGEod's new Grand Strategy 4X game set in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa, is finally ready to conquer the hearts and minds of all strategy enthusiasts, with unparalleled detail and outstanding depth.

Alexander the Great just died on the limits of the known world, and its dominions shatter in pieces. A tragedy for the Greek and Macedonian civilization, but a golden opportunity for a new leader to forge a new Empire from one of over 70 playable factions, each with its own set of national traits and units.

Tired of boring 4X games with heartless battles, where maths are more important than valor and tactics?
Field of Glory: Empires is unique also when it's time to fight. Players can choose between a rapid resolution. watching the entire battle unfold or export it and play it to Field of Glory II.

Continue here to read the full story.

Starbase Programming Video

YOLO, so Frozenbyte offers a new YOLOL Programming Feature video from Starbase, introducing YOLOL, the programming language that will power players creations in the upcoming sandbox space game. Here's word on YOLOL and the clip:

YOLOL is Starbase’s very own programming language, which is at the core of what enables Starbase’s creativity. It is what is used to control and manage the vast variety of Starbase’s different devices, such as doors, lamps, elevators, rail movers, robot arms, tractor beams, even spaceships and factories and anything else you can imagine.

Continue here to read the full story.

Diner Bros - Sushi Bros Next Week

Diner Bros - Sushi Bros is new DLC for Diner Bros that's coming to Steam on June 18th. This will teach you to cook slice up new dishes for the virtual customers of your virtual restaurant. Here's a trailer along with some stereotypical details, including word on a new split-screen feature that's also coming to the base game:

Japanese food is all the rage now, and that’s why you've decided to expand your diner after your burgers and pizzas became the most famous in town. How difficult can sushi be then? It’s just raw fish and rice after all! You thought it would be easy, but now your restaurant is full of wannabe kabuki actors, divas in kimono dresses and even hungry sumo wrestlers. Your cousin is late with his delivery, and you just found out you have to catch your own fish… Where’s all that Asian mindfulness when you need it? Welcome to Sushi Bros!

KEY FEATURES

  • Cook brand new Japanese recipes: rice, edamame, maki, sashimi, nigiri, grilled fish, yakitori, soy sauce… and of course, sushi!
  • Serve new drinks: tea and sake
  • Expand your restaurant with a fishing pier…
  • …and catch your own fish!
  • Attend to 4 new special customers, including Mr. Kabuki and Princess Hime
  • New equipment and items for your kitchen
  • Play against your friends with the new split-screen versus mode! (Included in the base game for free!)

Continue here to read the full story.

It Came from E3 2019, Part 3

On Sale

Op Ed

GamesIndustry.biz - Game streaming has not arrived - Opinion.
"For all their potential, streaming services just don't seem to be exciting to consumers yet. Much like digital distribution, they probably never will be. But they can still reshape the industry if they can find a compelling reason for consumers to adopt them. Digital distribution won players over with a degree of convenience consumers largely didn't even understand they wanted. While I can imagine an on-demand streaming service that re-shapes the industry by doing the exact same thing, the challenges to realizing that imagined service are tougher, more numerous, and some of them potentially insurmountable."

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Previews

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Wasteland 3 Next Year

The E3 trailer for Wasteland 3 is now online, offering the latest look at inXile's upcoming Wasteland sequel. The accompanying announcement adds a release window, saying we should expect the crowdfunded post-apocalyptic RPG in spring of 2020. Here's the news:

inXile Entertainment, the studio led by Interplay founder and Wasteland co-creator Brian Fargo and Deep Silver are pleased to announce that Wasteland 3 will be arriving in Spring 2020 on Xbox One, Xbox Game Pass, PlayStation 4, Windows, Mac, and Linux. The legendary series, which pioneered the post-apocalypse genre in video games, returns players to the role of Desert Rangers, lawmen in a post-nuclear world working to rebuild civilization from the ashes. Trading the dry, dusty heat of the American south-west for a perpetually frozen Colorado, Wasteland 3 features a number of chilling new locations where the Rangers receive an even frostier reception from the locals.

In addition to narrative choices and consequences, and the tactical turn-based combat that the series is known for, Wasteland 3 delivers brand new features, including a dynamic conversation system that highlights the weird and wild denizens of the Colorado Wasteland, an upgradable player vehicle, and the ability to play through the storyline cooperatively with a friend online. Today’s trailer provides a small look at the big things in store for Wasteland fans.

According to inXile CEO Brian Fargo, “Wasteland 3 is a passion project for inXile and especially me. I directed the first Wasteland in 1988 and its sequel was one of the original great crowdfunding successes, and it’s a series we care deeply about. Thanks to our partnership with Deep Silver and Microsoft, we’re able to deliver the kind of deep, immersive experience that Wasteland fans want and expect.”

Continue here to read the full story.

Epic Games Gets Chatty

A post on Medium reveals that Epic Games has acquired online chat program Houseparty (thanks Gamasutra). This does not go into plans, but it's easy to imagine this being utilized to flesh out the community support of the fledgling Epic Games Store, which has drawn criticism for lack of features to support the gaming community. Here's word:

Today is a big day for us at Houseparty because we’re joining the Epic Games family!

Houseparty is the synchronous social platform that lets you connect face-to-face with the people you care about most. By teaming up with Epic, creator of Fortnite and Unreal Engine, we’ll be able to help even more people connect with their friends, family, and peers.

“Joining Epic is a great step forward in achieving our mission of bringing empathy to online communication,” said Sima Sistani, Co-founder and CEO of Houseparty. “We have a common vision to make human interaction easier and more enjoyable, and always with respect for user privacy.”

“Houseparty brings people together, creating positive social interactions in real time,” said Tim Sweeney, founder and CEO of Epic Games. “By teaming up, we can build even more fun, shared experiences than what could be achieved alone.”

Commandos 2 HD Remaster & Praetorians HD Remaster Plans

Kalypso Media announces their plans for remastered versions of two Pyro Studios IPs they picked up last year. They unveil Commandos 2 - HD Remaster and Praetorians - HD Remaster will be coming to Windows, Linux, and macOS via Steam by the end of this year along with console versions for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Here's a video where they discuss both projects, and show off the improved visuals for the new versions of each game. Here's a full rundown:

Following on from its acquisition of the rights to Pyro Studios’ franchises in 2018, Kalypso Media is thrilled to kick off its E3 2019 line-up by announcing the return of two icons of the strategy genre. Commandos 2 HD Remaster and Praetorians HD Remaster, developed by Yippee Entertainment and Torus Games respectively, will bring these two classic gaming experiences to Windows PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox One in Q4 2019, with Commandos HD Remaster also coming to Nintendo Switch, Mac, Linux, iPad and Android tablets. Both titles will launch complete with updated graphics and enhanced controls for the best possible performance on modern gaming platforms.

In Commandos 2 HD Remaster (Kalypso Shop | Steam), take control of an elite group of commandos who must venture deep into enemy territory and utilize their combined expertise to complete a series of notoriously demanding missions set in World War II. In this genre-defining classic, explore interactive environments and use your commandos’ unique skillsets to complete your mission against seemingly impossible odds.

In Praetorians HD Remaster (Kalypso Shop | Steam), take your place in an emerging Roman Empire by proving your worth on the battlefields of Egypt, the combat theatres of Gaul and the heart of the Empire itself in Italy, in a crusade to become Emperor. Combine your units, master their varied skillsets and exploit the weaknesses of your enemies to emerge victorious. But beware – the closer you get to the Emperor, the closer you get to facing the infamous Praetorian Guard.

To celebrate the announcement of Commandos 2 HD Remaster and Praetorians HD Remaster, a new featurette is available with an interview with Ignacio Pérez Dolset, founder of Pyro Studios.

Continue here to read the full story.

After the Fall Announced

Vertigo Games announces After the Fall, a shared world first-person shooter for virtual reality from the creators of Arizona Sunshine. This will feature co-op support for up to four players, who will have to contend with the hostile environment of a post-apocalyptic Los Angeles where it will be difficult to breath or travel by highway, but may also include some differences from the present day. The E3 announcement trailer teases the concept, and those who find this intriguing can sign up for future beta testing on the official website. Here's more:

Vertigo Games, the videogame studio behind the hit VR shooter Arizona Sunshine, has announced After the Fall™, an epic multiplayer VR action FPS that will bring players into a vast, hostile world with seamless co-op gameplay at its core. Expected to launch in 2020, After the Fall combines an unprecedented VR world shared with players worldwide, a cinematic and atmospheric campaign, action-packed solo and multiplayer gameplay, and endgame built from the ground up for VR. Players can register for beta access for a chance to play at http://afterthefall-vr.com.

Watch After the Fall’s announcement teaser trailer for a taste of what's to come: https://youtu.be/_0kknW-iADw

“Arizona Sunshine was one of the first full-feature games developed exclusively for VR. Ever since, we’ve been eager to take it up a few notches and push hard at the boundaries of VR again,” said Richard Stitselaar, Studio Director at Vertigo Games. “With After the Fall, we’re bringing VR to life at a scale we believe hasn’t been done before – a seamless multiplayer experience shared with as many players as possible set in a dynamic world that will keep them coming back for more.”

Set in the post-apocalyptic, ice-covered ruins of an alternate 1980s Los Angeles, After the Fall pits up to four players against a vast, hostile world in a raging fight for control of the city and the survival of humanity. Go solo or join forces with players worldwide as you scavenge the remains of civilization, face relentless hordes and larger-than-life bosses, craft a huge range of guns and deadly close combat weapons, and wield devastating powers with real-life movements.

Continue here to read the full story.

American Truck Simulator Washington DLC Rolls Out

The promised Washington DLC for American Truck Simulator is now available on Steam, expanding the chance to drive your big rig around the pacific northwest. This comes alongside an additional Forest Machinery DLC to take advantage of the region's logging trade. There is also a new American Truck Simulator West Coast Bundle which offers savings on a combination of the base game, the two new add-ons, and the previously released Oregon DLC. Here are some details:

Washington map expansion brings the natural beauty of the "Evergreen State" Washington, from its Pacific Coast beaches to snowcapped mountain ranges and bustling cities such as Seattle and Spokane. Washington is covered by large amounts of forestland, alongside many other diverse biomes. It is also home to some of America's largest industries and businesses, and is the leading producer of many fruits and vegetables.

Drivers will be able to experience the state's thick forests, coastal views, winding rivers, farms, and stretching mountain ranges.

WASHINGTON FEATURES

  • 3,800 miles of dense road network
  • 16 brand new cities (Vancouver, Longview, Aberdeen, Olympia, Tacoma, Seattle, Everett, Port Angeles, Bellingham, Omak, Wenatchee, Yakima, Kennewick, Grand Coulee, Spokane, Colville)
  • More than 20 landmark bridges
  • 10 original truckstops
  • Keystone-Port Townsend Ferry
  • Spokane swing bridge
  • Grand Coulee dam
  • Washington's iconic mountains (Mount St. Helens and Mt. Rainier)
  • Challenging logging cliff road
  • Dynamic speed limits and LED signs
  • New unique cargoes: aircraft engines, saddle-mounted truck transport, boat...
  • Large and realistic ports (Seattle, Tacoma, Everett)
  • Many unique junctions
  • Distinct company docks: yacht builders, vast farms, material storages...
  • Washington-specific achievements to unlock

DOOM Eternal Collector's Edition

An announcement on Bethesda.net has details on a DOOM Eternal Collector's Edition that's now available for preorder (thanks Frans). This includes the upcoming shooter sequel in a steelbook case, a year-one pass for two coming expansions, and physical rewards including a full-sized, wearable replica DOOM Slayer helmet. Here's word on what you get in exchange for $199.99 USD.

INCLUDED IN THE DOOM ETERNAL COLLECTOR’S EDITION:

  • A Deluxe Edition copy of DOOM Eternal in an exclusive Steelbook case custom designed by graphic designer and illustrator Gabz in collaboration with Mondo. The DOOM Eternal Deluxe Edition includes:
    • DOOM Eternal Year One Pass, granting access to two single-player Campaign expansions, set to release within one year of DOOM Eternal’s launch
    • Demonic Slayer Skin
    • Classic Weapons Sound Pack, adding nostalgia-inducing weapon sound effects to your DOOM Eternal arsenal
  • A full-sized, wearable DOOM Slayer Helmet replica
  • A playable cassette tape, plus download codes for lossless digital copies of Mick Gordon’s DOOM (2016) and DOOM Eternal original soundtracks. The uncompressed music files will make any audiophile’s day, and the analog tape contains something special for id Software fans!
  • DOOM Lore Book with custom artwork by id Software. Learn more about the events past and present that shape the DOOM universe and the Slayer himself.
  • One “The Gift of Argent Power” 11” x 17” Lithograph

The DOOM Eternal Collector’s Edition is available to pre-order at participating vendors and the Bethesda Gear Store starting today, but don’t hesitate – quantities are limited and orders are first-come, first-served. Pick up yours today and prepare to Raze Hell when DOOM Eternal launches November 22!

Stardock, Paul, and Fred Settle Star Control Lawsuits

The Star Control Website has details on the settlement of the long-running dispute between Stardock Entertainment and Paul Reiche & Fred Ford over the rights to the Star Control series. Word is this an amicable outcome that will lead to future collaborations on Star Control content and beekeeping:

Game Developers Stardock Entertainment, Paul Reiche and Fred Ford have amicably settled the dispute concerning the tangled intellectual property rights that surrounded the 30-year old game franchise.

In a statement released by Paul Reiche on their website, Mr. Reiche wrote, "Paul and Fred have offered to volunteer their own creativity to Origins by teaming up with Brad to create some new aliens and plot lines for Stardock's future Star Control games."

The settlement agreement, while itself confidential, expressly makes the terms available to the public.

"Paul and I both insisted to the lawyers that the terms should not be confidential," said Brad Wardell, CEO of Stardock. "We really wanted to make sure the fans didn't have to speculate on how we came together on this and that it was genuinely something that resulted in both sides getting what they wanted out of the situation."

The dispute revolved around the murky dividing line between what trademarks cover and what copyrights cover. Stardock claimed the trademarks to the classic series and Paul Reiche claimed the copyrights. The issue came to a head when both parties announced new games that appeared related to Star Control.

After a year of litigation, the dispute was ultimately solved by Reiche calling Wardell directly, bypassing the lawyers, and the two finding a lot of common ground on a wide range of topics ranging from game design to beekeeping.

Continue here to read the full story.

It Came from E3 2019, Part 2

Morning Patches

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Previews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

After completing our re-watch of Deadwood, we finally got to view the new Deadwood movie. It's hard to believe my own reaction, but the series itself was even better than I remember, which says a lot for what I've long considered the best show of all time. The movie probably doesn't earn that kind of lofty accolade from me, but it was still a tremendous experience. It offered some much-needed closure and a glorious chance to revisit the setting and all those beloved characters that became so fully formed over the show's 36 episodes. Hoping this project would get made was a rollercoaster of ups and downs that spanned years, and I am still shocked but extremely grateful it finally happened.

Cinematic Links: Thanks Ant.
Links: Santa Anita Park Officials Announce They Will Stop Allowing Bets On All Upcoming Horse Deaths.
Stories: R.E.M., Roots, Steely Dan Did Not Know About Universal Warehouse Fire.
Why Food Reformers Have Mixed Feelings About Eco-Labels. Thanks RedEye9.
Quentin Tarantino Gives An Update On His Star Trek Film. Thanks Kxmode.
Science: Huge, Shaggy Head of 30,000-Year-Old Wolf Unearthed in Siberia. Thanks Neutronbeam and Max.
Scientists declare nearly 400 medical practices 'ineffective'.
Media: Jon Stewart says Congress 'should be ashamed' over inaction on helping 9/11 first responders.
Whoever Wrecked This Car Really Didn't Think Through The Evidence Left Behind.
Follow-up: Mumps outbreak: Bergen County, New Jersey jail placed on lockdown after suspected mumps outbreak.
The Funnies: Savage Chickens.



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