Archived News:

Monday, May 18, 2020

Epic Game Store Refund Policy & Keyless Integrations Launch; Mod Marketplace & Achievement Plans Revealed

An update on the Epic Games Store has word on some changes coming to the shop. Following the revelation of partial refunds on game's purchased shortly before they go on sale they unveil their full Refund Policy, which includes self-service refunds within two weeks of purchasing a game played for under two hours. They also unveil keyless redemption deals with Fanatical, Green Man Gaming, and Genba Digital and new bandwidth management options. Finally, looking ahead, they unveil plans for a mods marketplace and an achievements system. Here's more on self-service refunds:
All games are eligible for a refund within 14 days of purchase for any reason. However, you must not have played more than 2 hours.

You will not be eligible for games from which you have been banned or for which you have otherwise violated the terms of service. In addition, you may not be eligible for refunds if Epic determines that you are abusing the refund policy.

Digital Gamescom Begins August 27th

A tweet from Geoff Keighley announces the opening night ceremony for gamescom/Gamescom 2020 will be August 27th, kicking off a three-day digital version of the games show. The gamescom Website has more details:
The gamescom: Opening Night Live with Geoff Keighley, which was already one of the most wide-reaching gaming shows worldwide last year, will be the start of gamescom 2020 on 27 August. Be there when millions of fans worldwide follow world premieres and the latest announcements.

Artifact 2.0 Beta This Week

In this blog post Valve announces beta testing for Artifact version 2.0 will get underway this week. Admitting testing of the original release of the card game was too brief, they say they will gradually invite participants while their rework is still "under construction." They say everyone who owns the game on Steam will get emails by next week inviting them to sign up for the beta, and they will use a lottery system to select what order registrants are admitted until they've worked through the entire list. Here are two questions from the included FAQ explaining the scope of their plans:
What are we testing?
Gameplay, Balance, Hero Identity, Color Identity, Social Features, Card Unlocks, Ranked Play, Replays, Spectating and the Campaign.

What aren’t we testing?
Some gameplay modes will be locked. Tournaments and draft modes, other than Hero Draft, won’t be available until we add more players. The tutorial is disabled since we are only inviting players of the original game - the campaign should be a good refresher if you haven’t played in a while.

Chex Quest HD Released

General Mills announces the release of Chex Quest HD, perhaps the most unlikely game remaster yet. Now available for free on Steam, this is a remake of a non-violent DOOM-engine game released in 1996. Word is they are still hoping this has some marketing legs: "Fully remastered in all its original 1996 glory, Chex Quest now features modern additions, including local split-screen multiplayer mode, five new playable members of the mighty Chex Mix Squadron and high-definition graphics. Unlock new multiplayer mode and playable Chex Mix characters through unique codes found on specially marked bags of Chex Mix, Chex Mix Instagram or at" Here's more on the game:
In the new release of Chex Quest, the Intergalactic Federation of Snacks' outpost on the remote planet of Bazoik has been overrun by the evil, slimy “Flemoid” menace trying to turn the planet’s snacktacular way of life into total chaos. It is up to one member of the Chex Mix Squadron to rescue the planet of Bazoik and the other missing Chex Squadron characters by zorching the Flemoids back to their own dimension. This band of highly trained playable characters includes the original Fred Chexter and new playable characters: Wheatney Chexworth (Wheat Chex), Shane “The Dread” McBread (Breadstick), NaCI-96 (Round Pretzel), Dr. O Ryen (Rye Chip) and P.R.E.T.Z.L. (Square Pretzel), each with a unique ending and in-game dialogue. Join now and learn to zorch and bootspork, find keys, open doors and don’t forget about the secret rooms on every level to help with the rescue mission.

Rainbow Six Siege Operation Steel Wave Announced

Ubisoft announces Operation Steel Wave, the second season of year five for Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege. They don't specify when this update will officially launch, but they do say the test server will go live tomorrow if you want to check it out before it does. The new season will bring two new operators, new gadgets, a reworked house map, and gameplay changes, all shown off in this trailer. Here are all the details:
Today, during the remote livestream reveal, Ubisoft announced the full details of the second season of Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six® Siege Year 5. Operation Steel Wave introduces Ace and Melusi, a new Attacker and Defender from Norway and South Africa, in addition to an entirely reworked House map and slew of gameplay changes.

Norwegian Attacker Ace and South African Defender Melusi are the two new Operators coming in Operation Steel Wave. As a part of the Norwegian Home Guard, Ace acquired a heroic reputation. After being accepted into the Forsvarets Spesialkommando, on a joint UN operation in Somalia, Ace emerged saving Kali’s life. The offer to join NIGHTHAVEN swiftly followed. Ace is equipped with S.E.L.M.A., a throwable and stickable device that will stick to any vertical surface and slowly destroy up to 3 panels, one after the other. The S.E.L.M.A. gadget can also be thrown at almost any defensive gadget and destroy it with its arms or water explosive.
Continue here to read the full story.

This Week in Call of Duty

A new This Week in Call of Duty Briefing has the latest on what's going on in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Warzone. Word is: "This week in Modern Warfare play a new Multiplayer map Hardhat, experience a new Gunfight battleground Aisle 9, collect the Cash as Blood Money Quads returns to Warzone, pick up a new classic look for Ghost in Store, and more." Here are some details on changes coming to Warzone:
First, players will now find SMGs and assault rifles in the Gulag. While you can still receive a shotgun or pistol, be aware that different weapon classes are now being handed out in this fight for your life. The new weapon choices include the AK-47, M13, Kilo 141, Ram-7, Striker 45, and more. SMGs and assault rifle both expand the range of engagements in the Gulag, so be careful if you decide to rush your opponent.

The Armor Box is a new item available in all modes in Warzone. Similar to a Munitions Box, this item can be used by the entire team to replenish their armor before or after an engagement. Find the Armor Box in ground loot, Supply Boxes, or purchase it at a Buy Station to make sure you’re protected before you get into a battle.

Brush up on the fundamentals in a new limited-time mode – Classic Battle Royale. This mode strips down Battle Royale and features no Buy Stations, no Contracts, and no Gulag. If you’re out, you’re out. Survive the enemies and the ever-collapsing circle to be the last team standing.


VECTORLORD is now available on Steam, offering what developer NerveQuake Software calls a "modern arcade shooter." This seems like an odd description for a decidedly retro game that they also note has an "authentic '90s vibe," though they do mention some "modern twists." This is shown off in the recent Release Date Trailer and explained further in the announcement:
Vectorlord is an intense and challenging arcade twin-stick shooter with some modern twists, wrapped in a classic DOS-era aesthetic. Players will be blasting through thousands of virtual villains on a quest to save the digital world from the all-consuming Infectophage. Check out the new release date trailer below.

Vectorlord may have the body and soul of a DOS-era classic, but it has the mind of a cutting-edge modern shooter. Players will have to master more abilities than you can cram onto a floppy disk, including warping, melee attacks, ‘swimming’ through the void between platforms and juggling weapon power-ups and combining them into even deadlier equipment on the fly. It’ll take mastery of every ability to stand a chance at clearing all 20+ levels of the Infectophage Tower.
Continue here to read the full story.

On Sale

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Epic Offering Partial Refunds for Games Purchased Before They Go on Sale

A tweet from Joshua Boggs indicates Epic Games is now offering partial refunds to those who buy games from the Epic Games Store shortly before those games go on sale (thanks VG247). The store has not posted an official refund policy, but Joshua, who is founder of Studio MayDay, posted the following email he received after one of his recent purchases went on sale:
Hi Joshua,

You recently placed orders from the Epic Games Store. The price of the game(s) you purchased were recently lowered, so we are issuing partial refunds for the difference(s).

Tencent Now Owns System Shock 3 Website

System Shock 3 may have found a savior in Chinese giant Tencent following reports of layoffs at developer OtherSide Entertainment amid financial difficulties. VGC reports both the and SystemShock4 domains were transferred to Tencent Holdings last week, suggesting a deal between Tencent and OtherSide to help get the new installment in the action/RPG series back on track.

Ubisoft Does Not Own New Prince of Persia Domain

The new registration of a couple of weeks ago was apparently fake news. Though it initially appeared to have been registered by Ubisoft, DSOGaming notes that the registration details were changed shortly thereafter, making it clear this was not the case. It may be a gambit to change that, as visiting the domain shows it is now for sale, touting all the traffic it received as a result of sites like ours deceived into reporting on this. So while this all originally suggested a new Prince of Persia game was planned, the new takeaway is the opposite, as one would think Ubisoft would have secured the domain for a new installment.

Kerbal Space Program Free Update in July

Private Division and European Space Agency announce a free Shared Horizons update coming on July 1st to Kerbal Space Program for Windows. The console versions of the space sim will get this update later this year. Here's word on this cooperative adventure in the final frontier:
Shared Horizons will also add two cornerstone missions led by Europe’s chief space organization, the landmark rocket Ariane 5, an ESA-themed space suit for Kerbals, new parts, and science experiments for players to conduct. The first new mission, BepiColombo, will recreate the ESA's ongoing joined mission between the ESA and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to Mercury. Players will attempt to reach orbit and land on Moho, the equivalent of Mercury in the Kerbal universe, while performing various scientific tasks from the actual ESA mission. Rosetta, the second new mission, will pay tribute to the successful landing on a Jupiter-family comet, an event that enabled the gathering of important data on the comet’s environment. Based upon historic ESA missions, the challenges provide an opportunity for players to experience these thrilling space discovery moments in Kerbal Space Program.
Continue here to read the full story.

Forge and Fight Beta Next Month

Flamebait Games announces they will be showing off Forge and Fight in the Steam Game Festival Summer Edition from June 9-14. At that time they will be launching beta testing of this multiplayer physics action fighting game where players can craft their own weapons. You can follow the game through its Steam Listing and see it in action in the new Become A Beta Tester Trailer. Here's more:
“After the warm reception we received with the prototype of Forge and Fight! we are excited to open up the beta to the Steam community, before we launch the game on Early Access later this summer,” said Mattias Lindblad, Founder of Flamebait Games. “We are also hosting a streamer event the week before the Steam Festival, so hit us up for a key if you are a streamer and want to get in early and show off your fighting skills to your audience!”

Forge and Fight! is an online multiplayer action fighting game for up to 6-8 people, planned for Early Access late this summer. As a blacksmith gladiator you must experiment with crazy weapon builds and engage in creative, freestyle fighting to battle your friends in multiplayer combat. Unlock more items over the course of the game to build ever more ridiculous weapons in a frantic bid to annihilate your foes - or friends? The game’s dynamic combat system with open-ended weapon crafting will appeal to fans of titles such as Gang Beasts, For Honor and Human: Fall Flat. Visit the demo page for more information and for the full beta once the Steam Festival gets into full swing.
Continue here to read the full story.

Out of the Blue

As noted in this post Frans completed a project this morning to convert the database here to Unicode UTF-8 character encoding. This is the default recommended by the W3 for HTML. The change should help clear up the occasional appearance of unusual characters like the Chinese noted in that thread. Frans is still looking at some things that came out oddly after the conversion, but if you notice anything that looks wrong in news stories or forum posts going forward, please let us know. Thanks!

Encoded Links
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

Breakfast Link





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