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Monday, Jan 20, 2020 Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Dying Light 2 Delayed

A tweet from Techland announces a delay to the release of Dying Light 2, their post-apocalyptic action/RPG sequel that was planned for release this spring. There's no replacement release date they are currently revealing, so do not rage against the dying of the light. Here's word:
To our dedicated Community:

It was a busy year for us as we continued working on our biggest project to date. We know you are awaiting the game eagerly, and we want to deliver exactly what we promised.

We were initially aiming for a Spring 2020 release with Dying Light 2, but unfortunately we need more development time to fulfill our vision. We will have more details to share in the coming months, and we will get back to you as soon as we have more information. We apologize for this unwelcome news. Our priority is to deliver an experience that lives up to our own high standards and to the expectations of you, our fans.

Please stay tuned, and thank you to our fans around the world for your continued support, patience, and understanding.

Pawel Marchewka, CEO
Techland

Panzer Corps 2 in March

Slitherine announces they expect to release Panzer Corps 2 on March 19th. The new installment in the World War II strategy series was originally announced as coming in 2018, so this isn't exactly a blitzkrieg. Here's a new Release Date Announce Trailer, and here's the battle plan:
March 19th is a day every strategy gamer will want to mark on his calendar: after nine years of intense development, Panzer Corps 2 will be released on all major PC stores. It took a long time to re-invent a classic. The original Panzer Corps sold over a million units since its release and won multiple awards. It wasn’t an easy task to follow in the footsteps of its spiritual predecessor, but Panzer Corps managed to capture the imagination of all strategy fans by delivering a modern product within a classic gameplay framework; and they loved it for that.

Now it’s time to move to a new dimension. Panzer Corps 2 lands on the Unreal engine, with a set of close to 500 hyper-detailed 3d models, incredibly detailed terrain, an exceptionally intuitive UI and the slickest animations.
The art department is only one of many areas where the new Panzer Corps is shining. Its creator Alex Shargin has reimagined a game to please the eyes of a modern audience while keeping its roots firmly into the heritage of a classic. There is no other way to say it: Panzer Corps 2 is the ultimate turn-based WWII strategy game.

Panzer Corps 2 quick facts

  • 1.000 unit types
  • 61 scenarios in the single player campaign
  • Alternative History scenarios: land your panzers on US East coast
  • Random map generator for Skirmish, both single player and multiplayer
  • Live MP, Hotseat and PBEM, Co-op and tournaments
  • 4k support
  • Built in Unreal Engine 4
  • Flexible alliance configuration for co-op mode, free for all
  • Hundreds of custom camouflages and insignias can be assigned to any unit
  • Dozens of map skins for different locations, seasons and weather

Continue here to read the full story.

A Long Way Down Early Access

Early Access to A Long Way Down is now underway on Steam, offering a deck-building RPG for Windows, Linux, and macOS. The launch hasn't been without its issues, but this post has details on what they are doing about this. Here's an Early Access Trailer with a look at what to expect in action, and here's more of a rundown on this roguelite game:
Inspired by hits like Darkest Dungeon, Slay the Spire and Hand of Fate, A Long Way Down is set in a dark and tormented world in which you’ll have to assemble your party and use your cards to survive, fight and build your way through a dark maze of monsters.
The cards you choose will determine how you explore the dungeon and defend yourself from every enemy as you meet many fellow adventurers, upgrade your items and equipment, and collect rewards.

A Long Way Down will be launched in Early Access and it will stay like that for 4-8 months. The game will currently contains 2-3 hours of gameplay, around 40 cards, 3 playable characters and a dozen of monsters.

Features

  • Build a crew to roam the darkness of the mastermind's lair
  • Dive in a journey where sin meets virtue on every crossroad
  • Gather memories from your past to understand the heroes journey
  • Upgrade epic weapons & armors to overcome bigger foes
  • Adapt your play style & upgrade your skills to face various challenges
  • Play the adventure again and try new morality choices

Continue here to read the full story.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: History of the Earth.

The Last of Us Part II PC Plans?

A job posting on LinkedIn from Naughty Dog puts out the call for a graphics programmer to join their game team (thanks TechRadar). The requirements they list suggest they may be working on a PC edition of The Last of Us Part II. Here's the evidence that the action/adventure sequel may not remain exclusive to PlayStation 4:
Summary:
Join our talented rendering team to develop and implement new and existing rendering techniques for our upcoming game, The Last of Us Part II.

Responsibilities:

  • Develop and implement new and existing rendering techniques
  • Implement efficient and stunning industry defining visuals
  • Additional responsibilities may be assigned as needed

Requirements & Skills:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or equivalent work experience
  • Strong math skills with an emphasis in 3D math
  • Strong knowledge of C and C++ programming languages
  • Thorough understanding of current GPU architectures (AMD GCN, NVIDIA CUDA)
  • Experience with DirectX12, Vulkan or other modern graphics or compute APIs
  • Experience with HLSL/GLSL or other equivalent shader languages
  • Console or PC programming experience
  • Passion for playing and developing exceptional games

Rockstar's UK Tax Relief

An article on Tax Watch UK discusses Rockstar Games' tax avoidance strategies that take advantage of Video Games Tax Relief (VGTR) in the UK. They explain the company was able to claim £42 million in tax relief on Grand Theft Auto V, a game which has "grossed over $6 billion in revenue." The oddity is this program is intended to apply to games that highlight British culture, and it's hard to figure out how that relates to GTA5. VG247 has a statement from Rockstar which does not address that aspect of this but does claim the tax relief has helped them create jobs. Word in the Tax Watch article is that Rockstar is looking to once again take advantage of this loophole for Grand Theft Auto VI:
Recent statistics reveal that £324 million has been claimed since the scheme’s roll-out. Our report, Gaming The System, highlighted the fact that the developers of GTA V were able to claim £42 million in tax relief (19% of the total awarded 2015-2017), despite the fact that the game had grossed over $6 billion in revenue. Rockstar North, GTA’s developer, has already contacted the BFI to seek accreditation for the forthcoming GTA VI.

All of the VGTR claims are made as a direct result of passing the BFI’s cultural test. Given the amount of public money involved in these claims, and the fact that many games are published by foreign studios, on subject matter that is not culturally British, it is imperative that the BFI is transparent in the decision making process. The public deserves to know how and why multi-billion dollar companies are receiving tax relief.

Out of the Blue

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, one of only 10 federal holidays here in the US. If this means you have the day off, enjoy the holiday. And hats off to you if you are observing the simultaneous Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.

Serviceable Links: Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.
Science: Asteroid Capable Of Causing Impact Event Headed For Earth, NASA Warns.
Gemstone Turns Out to Be Fossil of an Unknown Dinosaur.
Media: SKYWATCH: a Sci-Fi Short (w/Jude Law).
Star Trek: Picard - Blue Skies extended.
Tire-Deflating Car Lock Picked FAST.
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