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Friday, Nov 22, 2019

Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts Released

Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts is now available as the latest installment in this sharpshooting series. This is available GOG.com and Steam, and while both sites offer a 10% launch discount, GOG.com is also offering a free copy of Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 along with the game as an additional bonus. This post on Steam has patch notes for a Day 1 patch that brings the game up to version 1.02. The Launch Trailer has a look at what to expect, and the announcement aims at providing more details:
CI Games is thrilled to announce the launch of the eagerly anticipated Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts, which promises to deliver in-depth play elevating the series to new heights.

Focusing on top new features – including an all-new Dynamic Reticle System which offers intense sniping experience, dramatic dismemberment mode and upgradeable AR mask – and pure sniper fun gameplay set in the unforgiving Siberian wilderness, the open sandbox game allows players to enjoy Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts on their terms, picking their own route and playing how they want to.

The game comprises 25 unique and challenging contracts across five considerably-sized maps; each one there to be explored extensively. Players are challenged to eliminate targets using new precision sniping mechanics, while choosing from an arsenal of new weapons and gadgets.

Gamers will need to carefully plan out and execute the perfect kill and exfiltration from a given encounter: no two missions are the same.

From its in-depth single-player campaign, to its return-to-form, intense mission-based contracts system, Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts seeks to perfect the feeling of staring down a scope and planning your approach. Get ready to tackle the Siberian wilderness and all the unique environmental obstacles it brings with it, because Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts is taking aim.
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October Digital Sales Charts

SuperData Arcade offers their latest worldwide digital games market research, which covers October 2019. Here's how this is presented: "Consumers spent $8.84 billion digitally across all games in October. Combined spending across console, PC and mobile was down 3% year-over-year primarily due to a sharp drop off in the console segment, which faced a difficult comparison against the Red Dead Redemption 2 launch last year. Mobile grew 7% as it continues to be a growth leader for digital games." Here's the accompanying chart:

Top Grossing Titles by Category
Worldwide, ranked by October 2019 earnings
PC CONSOLE MOBILE
1 League of Legends Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Honour of Kings
2 Dungeon Fighter Online FIFA 20 Last Shelter: Survival
3 Fantasy Westward Online II Destiny 2 Candy Crush Saga
4 Crossfire Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Breakpoint Pokémon GO
5 World of Warcraft West NBA 2K20 Homescapes
6 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Fortnite Monster Strike
7 Fortnite Borderlands 3 Coin Master
8 World of Tanks Grand Theft Auto V Lineage M
9 The Outer Worlds Apex Legends Clash of Clans
10 Roblox FIFA 19 Mafia City
Source: SuperData Arcade. Please visit http://bit.ly/sdarcade for more info.
© 2019 SuperData. A Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved
SUPERDATA
A NIELSEN COMPANY

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Hellbound Demo

A playable demo for Hellbound is now available on Steam, offering the chance to check out Nimble Giant's first-person shooter before its release later this year. This draws its inspiration from the classics of the genre like QUAKE and DOOM, something that's readily apparent from the typeface choice for their logo. Here's word on the demo, where they capitalize on the recent news of a delay to DOOM Eternal:
Devastated that Doom’s launch date has moved? Have no fear! Saibot Studios, together with publisher Nimble Giant, is launching a brand new demo for Hellbound today, so you can get your frantic, blood-soaked first person shooter fix anyway! Created in homage to the 90s FPS classics such as Doom, Quake, Duke Nukem 3D and Blood (amongst others), Hellbound focuses on action, speed and gore as you fight against hordes of enemies who have taken over a distant planet.

In this demo, get ready for your first taste of Hellbound. You will visit the Unholy Lands of Hell, a forgotten place that was sacred once. Now, just another rotten refuge for evil. Let's make those demons pay respect to our Ancestors!

Features
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WRATH: Aeon of Ruin Early Access

Speaking of QUAKE, Early Access is now underway on Steam for WRATH: Aeon of Ruin, a first-person shooter from 3D Realms, 1C Entertainment, and KillPixel Games build on id Software's venerable QUAKE engine. Here's the Early Access Release Trailer and here's more on the game:
Once adrift upon the Ageless Sea, Outlander finds himself on the shores of a dying world. A radiant figure draped in white, the Shepherd of Wayward Souls, burdens Outlander with a harrowing task: journey into the sprawling gloom and slay the fallen Guardians who have plunged this world into darkness.

WRATH launches in Early Access with the first of three non-linear Hub worlds and two unlocked levels. Annihilate the horrors lurking within the ruins of the Old World with an arsenal of devastating weaponry and mystical artifacts. Early Access will continue to receive content updates that add even more levels, enemies, weapons, artifacts and music by Quake Champions composer Andrew Hulshult.
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Wunderling Announced

Developer Retroid announces Wunderling, a 2D platformer coming to Steam and Switch next year. The unusual premise here is that the player takes the role of a low-level goon, rather than the hero, which is shown off in their Reveal Trailer. Here's more in case you are wondering about Wunderling:
In Wunderling, a retro video game henchman (the title character) is revived and given the power to jump by its master – the evil sorceress Kohlrabi. Seeking to tighten her hold on the Vegetable Kingdom and defeat its hero (the Carrot Man), she tasks the Wunderling with protecting her prisoner – the lovely Princess Pea. Unable to stop or change direction at will, planning ahead becomes a must. The Wunderling’s special abilities will be essential to navigate the game’s lengthy scrolling levels!

“Being on a Nintendo platform is surreal – almost dream-like. We’re thrilled that our little indie game will get a shot at a huge audience through one of the world’s most beloved consoles,” says Niklas Istenes, producer and game designer at Retroid. “When designing Wunderling, we originally wanted to create an adventure game based around a single button and show that you can indeed make a traditional platformer with that premise. In Wunderling, you clear levels like traditional platform games – and you even have boss stages! We eventually added more buttons, but the game can still be played with one hand.”
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Dungeon Defenders: Awakened Beta for Preorders

An update from Dungeon Defenders: Awakened announces that the PC beta is now underway for this co-op, tower defense, action/RPG (thanks Wccftech). Though the beta started out for their Kickstarter backers, as of today they are offering access to everyone who has purchased a $40+ preorder package. Here's the Official Beta Launch Trailer, and here's more:
Beta is currently scheduled to run for roughly three weeks! Starting on November 22nd and ending on 13th, this gives us a great window to gather feedback and be able to make necessary changes before launching in February.

Progress and data from the Beta does NOT carry over to the release of the game. Beta is used as a testing ground to make sure that the game is in the best possible state. Keeping data from Beta (ha, it rhymes) can cause major issues when updating to the release version.

If you did not receive a Beta key, and are a Kickstarter Backer, make sure you have filled out the surveys that were sent to your registered Kickstarter E-mails from "Backerkit". If that survey is not filled out, then the Beta key is not sent.
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LOST EMBER Found

LOST EMBER is now available on GOG.com and Steam, offering an action/adventure where the player takes on the roles of a variety of animals. Each site is providing a 10% launch discount, which will end on December 3rd. The Announcement Trailer takes a look at this walk (and flight) on the wild side. Here's more:
A breathtakingly beautiful world holds the secrets of its past for you and your companion to uncover.

Experience the contrasting stories of the fall of mankind and the lush life in a world reclaimed by nature with a wolf as your main character and a determined companion at your side.

Explore the land, sea, and air, as you possess any creature you come across to experience life from a whole new perspective. Fly through gargantuan canyon valleys as a parrot! Tumble through the grass as a wombat! Swim through shimmering lakes as a fish! Your journey will take you from densely wooded jungles, to lush rainforest canopies, to barren desert plains and archaic temples.

Ultimately, you'll discover a tale of loyalty, despair, and betrayal, as echoes of the lost Yanrana culture come to life in a lush wilderness devoid of man.
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Street Fighter V Free Weekend

Steam is offering a free weekend for the Windows edition of Street Fighter V, the latest installment in Capcom's fighting series (thanks SteamDB via Ant). Here's a bit on the game, because in sleepy London town, there's just no place for a Street Fighting Man:
Experience the intensity of head-to-head battle with Street Fighter® V! Choose from 16 iconic characters, each with their own personal story and unique training challenges, then battle against friends online or offline with a robust variety of match options.

Earn Fight Money in Ranked Matches, play for fun in Casual Matches or invite friends into a Battle Lounge and see who comes out on top! PlayStation 4 and Steam players can also play against each other thanks to cross-play compatibility!

This version of Street Fighter V displays the “Arcade Edition” title screen and includes Arcade Mode, Team Battle Mode and the online-enabled Extra Battle Mode, where you can earn rewards, XP and Fight Money! Fight Money can be used to purchase additional characters, costumes, stages and more!

Prison Architect Free Weekend

The promised free weekend for Prison Architect is now underway on Steam, offering the chance to manage a maximum security penitentiary in this incarceration simulation for Windows, macOS, and Linux. Here's more on the game, least we be accused of having a failure to communicate:
Build and manage a Maximum Security Prison. As the sun casts it’s early morning rays on a beautiful patch of countryside the clock starts ticking. You’ve got to crack on and build a holding cell to detain the job­ lot of maximum security prisoners that are trundling to your future prison on their yellow bus. As your workmen lay the last brick you don’t have a moment to let them rest as they need to get started on the first proper cell block so you can make room for the next prisoner intake. Once they’ve all got a place to lay their weary heads the fun can really start.

Valve Index Released in Canada and Japan

Valve announces their Valve Index virtual reality headsets are now available in two more territories, Japan and Canada:
Valve Index, a collection of leading edge VR hardware released in the US and Europe earlier this year, is now available in Canada and Japan.

In addition, users who already own an Index or purchase the Index Kit, Index Headset/Controllers kit, just the Index Headset, or just the Index Controllers prior to the release of Half-Life: Alyx will receive a free copy of the game.

Those who purchase any of the above options before the end of 2019 will also have access to Steam VR Destinations before Half-Life: Alyx's launch, allowing them to explore in-game locations. And once in the game, enjoy unique gun skins.

Compatible with all Steam VR games, the Valve Index hardware includes the Index HMD, Controller, and the 2.0 Base Stations. To enable a variety of options for those looking to upgrade their VR experience, all the items are offered individually as well as in various combinations.

Corporate America Released

Corporate America is now available on Steam, offering a first-person shooter for Windows with a satirical bent. Make sure your Swingline stapler is secured and you've picked up your bone business cards with the Silian Rail lettering from the printer. Then check out this trailer for a look at gameplay and read on for the premise:
In the near future AI has taken all of our jobs, and the only jobs left for humans are sending emails back and forth to each other. Corporate America is a fast paced multiplayer shooter, where you shoot emails to your coworkers instead of guns. Featuring Online and LAN modes, relive the fast paced arena shooters of old with a new sterile twist.

Conveniently reconceptualize e-business methodologies in Corporate America!

Action Items:

  • Play online or local with up to 15 friends (or rivals)
  • 5 arenas included over 3 game types
  • Game types include: Patiencematch, Patriotism, Capitalism
  • Achievements!
  • All future updates and additions are free with purchase of game

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Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

Thanks for the well-wishing for my birthday yesterday. It was a quiet occasion here, which suits me fine. MrsBlue and I will go to dinner over the weekend to celebrate. I'll also be seeing my old softball buddies tonight in a general get-together. The timing of this is good, as we can have a toast or two to the pair of us with November birthdays. This the right group for this, as I am the youngest, so I am less subject to age jokes. I'm actually the eldest of my other main group of friends, so they are best to be avoided at this time.

Aged Links: Thanks Ant.
Link: Tesla's electric pickup truck flouts convention with angular design and armored glass. Are you telling me you built a truck out of a DeLorean?
Science: A Solar 'Breakthrough' Won't Solve Cement's Carbon Problem. Need more concrete solutions.
Images: Raiders of the Lost Bark.
Media: 'Armor glass' smashes in Tesla truck demo fail.
Honest Trailers - Tangled. Thanks JDreyer.
Airplane Catches Fire During Flight. Yikes! Thanks Boing Boing.
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