Archived News:

Tuesday, Jan 14, 2020

Arma 3 Free Week

A free week is now underway on Steam for Arma 3, the latest installment in Bohemia Interactive's military shooter series. The game can be sampled for nothing between now and January 6th, and if you decide you like it, you can keep your progress and pick up a copy for 70% off the regular price, while the game's DLC is also on sale for 66% off. Word is: "During the Free Week, all Steam users will have free access to the Arma 3 base game plus the Arma 3 Apex expansion. This also includes Arma 3's full "The East Wind" singleplayer campaign and the "Apex Protocol" co-op campaign. New players might also familiarize themselves with the game's controls via the "Prologue" tutorial campaign." This trailer celebrates the occasion. Here are more details on the game:
Experience true combat gameplay in a massive military sandbox. Deploying a wide variety of single- and multiplayer content, over 20 vehicles and 40 weapons, and limitless opportunities for content creation, this is the PC’s premier military game. Authentic, diverse, open - Arma 3 sends you to war.
Continue here to read the full story.

Bot Net: Ramshackle Robotics Demo

The Steam Listing for Bot Net: Ramshackle Robotics now offers a playable Windows demo for Caffeineware's turn-based strategy game where you do battle with an army of robots of your own design. This gives a sample of the game, which is planned for release in autumn of this year after an Indiegogo Campaign planned for next month. Here's a trailer to convey the game's story, and here are some details:
The spaceship is disabled, the aliens have boarded and killed everyone in sight. Help isn’t coming, and it’s all on you to take up the roll of the hero, stop the aliens, and save the day. Only one problem; you aren’t a hero. You don’t have a badass suit of power armor, or a big gun, or even a crowbar. You are the ship’s IT guy -- and right now -- you’re locked in your office armed with nothing but a computer, 3D printer, and a hand full of janitor bots that you've hastily reprogrammed for combat. Your only hope of survival is to send your bots out to explore the ruined ship, find vital resources and upgrades, and build a force strong enough to take back control of the ship. Only then can you get the engines back online and warp to safety. Bot Net: Ramshackle Robotics is a turn-based strategy roguelike about fighting off an army of aliens with jury rigged robots. If that idea appeals to you, you’re probably in the right place.

Delve into the easy to learn, but hard to master, Behavior System which blends the exciting tight-knit feel of squad based strategy, with the large scale planning of grand strategy. Build and upgrade your robot army with specialized bot upgrades and powerful weapons and items. Turn the tides of battle by gaining control of Stations; key locations that provide powerful bonuses and large scale effects. Learn to outsmart your enemies by exploiting their unique behaviors!
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Bug Academy Released

Bug Academy is now available on Steam, offering a Windows 2.5D arcade game that puts the payer in control of a swarm of insects. Here's a Launch Trailer, and there's a previously released playable demo you can check out. Here's word on the game, which will hopefully not be plagued by bugs:
🐛Bug Academy is a crazy action game in which you control a swarm of cute, little insects and try to guide them through a series of lessons and exercises. Break through walls while delivering fridges, send rockets into space using mosquitoes and chili sauce, or catch ghosts with a vacuum cleaner. Finish all the lessons and pass the final exam to become Bug Academy graduate!
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KUNAI Next Month

Publisher The Arcade Crew and developer TurtleBlaze announce a release date for KUNAI, saying this action game will come to PC and Switch on February 6th. They describe this as an "action-centric quest to salvage humanity from a merciless AI leading a robot uprising, and offer a new Boss Trailer with a look at gameplay. Here's word on the clip: "A new trailer was paired with today’s announcement, sharing a glimpse of the pivotal showdowns players will need to overcome to succeed with their mission. Dispatched by their evil commander Lemonkus to curb any resistance to the new mechanically inclined world, these powerful foes will demand faultless reflexes as well as a mastery of blade and bullets." Here's a bit more on the game:
KUNAI’s adventure through its striking war-torn world emphasizes swift exploration and combat; whether it’s dancing on the heads of enemies with well-timed slashes of a katana, dodging death with grappling hook-esque kunai, or swinging over chasms to discover new areas, KUNAI equips players with an arsenal which makes experiencing every corner of its map a delight.
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Evening Crowdfunding

  • Aeolis Tournament by Beyond Fun Studio — Kickstarter. "Aeolis Tournament is a 3D party action game where up to 8 players compete in various game modes based on a simple one-button mechanic. Characters use an air cannon to control the power of the wind and affect their surroundings. It's a high-tempo game in the vein of Fuzion Frenzy with a Nintendo-inspired cartoony and colorful art direction."

Into the Black

Link of the Day: The Deadliest Marksman’s Cold, Brave Stand. Thanks Max.

Epic Games Store Sales Top $680M; Free Games to Continue All Year

Epic Games announces that sales on the Epic Games Store have now topped $680 million in total, and over a quarter of a billion dollars of that were spent on third-party PC games. They also say they have now given away 73 free games worth a total of $1,455, and that gamers have claimed over 200 million free games. Finally, they also announce they plan to continue to give away one free game per week throughout the remainder of 2020. Here's word:
Happy New Year!

New decade means new games and we’re looking at a great start with tons of amazing titles coming exclusively to the Epic Games Store in 2020. To kick things off, we’re extending our weekly free game program throughout 2020. Every single week, come back to claim your game. Once claimed, it’s yours to keep forever.

Now, let’s take a look at how far the Epic Games Store has come…
Continue here to read the full story.

Marvel's Avengers Delayed

Crystal Dynamics announces a delay to Marvel's Avengers (thanks Gematsu). Word is the super-heroic action game is now due on September 4th after previously shooting for a May 15th worldwide release. Here's word:
To our fans,

At Crystal Dynamics our ambition has always been to deliver the ultimate Avengers gaming experience. In order to achieve that goal, we have made the difficult decision to move the release date of Marvel’s Avengers to September 4, 2020.

As fans ourselves, it’s an honor and a privilege to work with these legendary characters and we know what these Super Heroes mean to us and True Believers around the world. When we set out to bring you our vision for Marvel’s Avengers, we committed to delivering an original story-driven campaign, engaging co-op, and compelling content for years to come. To that end, we will spend this additional development time focusing on fine tuning and polishing the game to the high standards our fans expect and deserve.

The worldwide teams working on Marvel’s Avengers sincerely appreciate the support you’ve shown us. We thrive on your enthusiasm and feedback and we can’t wait to show you more. We apologize for the delay. We’re confident it will be worth the wait.

Scot Amos & Ron Rosenberg
Co-Heads of Studio, Crystal Dynamics

Magic: Legends Beta This Spring

Perfect World Entertainment and Cryptic Studios reveal that beta testing of Magic: Legends will begin this spring (or autumn, for those down under). This will offer a first crack at this recently announced action/MMORPG based on collectible card game Magic: The Gathering. Word is: "The first playtest will introduce two new Planeswalkers, the earth-shattering Geomancer and the psychic power-wielding Mind Mage." If you are interested, they are still accepting signups from potential testers on this page. They also now offer a first trailer showing off actual gameplay footage. Here are some details on the game and the first two classes they are revealing:
From the developers behind Neverwinter comes a new top-down MMO Action RPG featuring fast-paced combat inspired by Magic: The Gathering. An ancient force moves in darkness, posing an ever-growing threat to the entire multiverse. Players will experience the power of becoming a Planeswalker as they discover exciting mana-based spells and strategically build out the perfect hand of balanced attacks to control the chaos of the battlefield. While openly exploring the vast planes from Magic: The Gathering, players will fight alongside iconic characters and legendary creatures made popular by the original card game. Key features of Magic: Legends include:

  • Become a Planeswalker – Players can choose from five diverse classes and switch between different Planeswalkers at any time.
  • Walk Your Own Path – Players will need to cross various planes to save the multiverse, but how they weave their path is up to them.
  • Control the Chaos – Control the chaos in real-time combat. Choosing what spells go into each hand requires strategy, as they will be drawn at random during attacks.
  • Collect and Upgrade – Players will discover a myriad of spells and collect spell fragments to make them more powerful.
  • Fight Together – The planes in Magic: Legends can be traversed alone or with up to two other Planeswalkers.

Here’s a closer look at the first two classes announced for Magic: Legends:

Continue here to read the full story.

The Longing in March

Publisher Application Systems and developer Studio Seufz (Studio Sigh in English) announce The Longing, a puzzle/adventure coming to Windows, Linux, and macOS on March 5th. Preorders are now underway on this page. This is based on the Kyffhäuser Legend and the twist is how you have 400 days to complete the game after starting, as the timer continues to tick away even when you aren't playing. This trailer shows off the game, which is nominated for the Nuovo Award in this year's Independent Game Festival. Here's a description:
The Longing’s 400 days count down in real time from the moment you start—even when you stop playing and exit the game. Your only required task is to awaken the King once the 400 days have passed. So, you could just wait to see how it ends… Or, you can explore the vast cave and eventually decide: will you stick with the King and build a comfortable life for yourself underground? Or will you make a break for it and escape to the world above? The Longing has several endings, and not all of them take 400 days to uncover.

KEY FEATURES

  • Slow exploration of a vast, hand-drawn cave.
  • Atmospheric Dungeon Synth soundtrack.
  • Various endings.
  • Lots of well hidden secrets.
  • Time-based puzzles.
  • A lonely but cute protagonist.

Continue here to read the full story.

LUNA The Shadow Dust Next Month

Application Systems also announces LUNA The Shadow Dust is coming to Windows, macOS, and Linux on February 13th. This represents a delay, as they announced last spring that this was expected last summer. Word is this game offers "a hand-animated indie adventure with calming puzzle-oriented gameplay and a wordless picture-book aesthetic," as shown off in this Final Launch Date Trailer. You can preorder the game on this page and see more details on its listings in stores like GOG.com and Steam. Here's more:
Description
Inspired by the adventure games of old, LUNA The Shadow Dust is a moving tale of two playable companions drawn together in a hand-animated puzzle adventure, featuring a breathtaking original soundtrack and beautiful 2D cinematics.

Story

To light a candle is to cast a shadow

Behind the shadow of reality, an enchanted world awaits illumination. Experience the magical journey of a young boy and his companion as they solve puzzles and trace back the memories of old, brought to life with visually stunning, wordless cinematics.
Enter the ancient tower that stands at the edge of the world and discover the hand-drawn cinematics, intricate puzzles and haunting music of this indie gem.

Key Features
Continue here to read the full story.

Out of the Blue

I've recently started to experience a nagging pain just above the wrist along the ulna of my right arm. This is my mouse-hand, and since I work and play on the computer so much the obvious concern is some sort of repetitive stress injury. I've known a couple of sufferers, including former id Software programmer John Cash, and through their experiences I can appreciate just how serious RSIs can be. But this has only just started for me, so I've only consulted with Dr. Google thus far. The good news is this doesn't sound like Carpal tunnel syndrome or ulnar tunnel syndrome, at least as far as I can tell. I have suffered on occasion from cubital tunnel syndrome, which went away when I stopped leaning on my elbow when reclining, but this doesn't seem the same as that either. Before we moved I had some arm pain from working in a makeshift environment, and this seems similar to that, so I have adjusted the armrests on my chair to make my forearm more level, and this seems to provide some immediate relief, so I'm hopeful this will take care of it. No one wants an RSI, so I will monitor this and will not put off seeing a doctor if it persists, as from what I read, early diagnosis and treatment is important in such cases.

Painful Links: Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.
Links: Joker’s Oscar nominations are a joke: This movie is stupid. Thanks RedEye9.
Star Trek TV Universe Set to Expand With Two More Live-Action Series on Deck, Says Alex Kurtzman.
Stories: Alaska rescue: Man found weeks after remote cabin burned down. Thanks RedEye9.
Missouri farmer ran one of biggest frauds in US farm history. Thanks Digg.
Tampa woman faces charges for allegedly making bomb in Walmart. Thanks RedEye9.
Science: Scientists use stem cells from frogs to build first living robots. Thanks Max.
How Much Sleep Do You Really Need? Thanks Max.
The 100-Year-Search for a Missing Impact Crater Is Over. Thanks RedEye9.
Media: The importance of looting in Red Dead Redemption 2.
New Black Widow trailer introduces a new enemy, Taskmaster.
Neighbor Calls Police After Hearing A Woman Crying For Help.
Auctions: Australian developers organising global fundraising auction for fire services.
Follow-up: Anti-vaxxers celebrate victory in NJ as pro-vaccine bill falls apart.
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