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Tuesday, Jul 07, 2020

Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown Announced

Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown was announced at today's Nacon Connect event, revealing the next installment in this racing series. This already has a Steam Listing, with a TBD release date and a very brief description: "Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown is an open world driving and lifestyle experience. Grab your keys and live your life of luxury. Remember, social status is everything In the world of TDU." There's a very short cinematic teaser trailer for this and they offer some vague details:
It's confirmed: a new game in the Test Drive Unlimited franchise is in development at KT Racing. Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown is the new ambitious project from Alain Jarniou and his team. Leveraging their experience making motorsports simulations such as the WRC series, KT Racing and NACON are offering their new vision of the franchise. Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown retains the DNA of the series, which is based on a love of beautiful cars and the joy of driving around a luxurious island world recreated at 1:1 scale. Players will compete against each other in the Solar Crown, a competition with mysterious stakes, to elevate their character's status within the community.
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Mafia: Definitive Edition Delayed

This tweet announces a delay to the release of the Mafia: Definitive Edition, saying the open-world crime remake is now due on September 25th. This is about a month later than previously planned, and they explain the setback is due to COVID-19. They promise an extended look at gameplay on July 22nd, and for now offer a Gameplay Reveal Trailer with just a glimpse of what to expect. Here's word:
Mafia: Definitive Edition will now release worldwide on September 25. Though we'd originally planned to release the game one month earlier on August 28, finalizing everything in time for that lunch date has become increasingly challenging due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, and last thing we want to do is compromise the quality of the experience.

From the beginning, this has been a passion project for us. Many of our developers helped create the original Mafia, and all of us are committed to crafting an updated experience worthy of that timeless classic. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we make Mafia: Definitive Edition the very best it can be for all of our fans worldwide.
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Werewolf: The Apocalypse - Earthblood Delayed Release on Epic Games Store

Nacon Connect released a new trailer today for Werewolf: The Apocalypse - Earthblood, showing off a bit of gameplay from the lycanthropic RPG in the works at Cyanide. This was announced as coming this summer, but they offer a new release date of February 4, 2021. It also seems that this will be an Epic Games Store exclusive, as word is:
With his former Caern in danger, Cahal must return to a land he once called home to protect his family and friends, no matter the cost. With the evil corporation Endron besieging them from every side, only you can fight the corruption taking root within your home, using the devastating power of the Werewolf to turn the tide.

Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood is coming to Epic Games Store, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X in February 2021.
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Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong Coming to the Epic Games Store

Similar to the story above, a new trailer called The Invitation from Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong made its debut today at Nacon Connect. This reiterates the game's 2021 release Window and adds that the PC edition of Cyanide Studio's bloodthirsty RPG is coming to the Epic Games Store, seemingly as an exclusive. Here's the description of the cinematic clip:
Tonight, everything changes. Join us, as we celebrate the unification of Boston and Hartford. As we revolutionize our blood supply. Tonight we celebrate, and tonight everything changes... Just not in the way we expected.

Embrace the role of 3 vampires, each belonging to a different clan of the Camarilla. Weave between their intertwined stories, unravel fact from fiction and make choices that will define the future of the city of Boston.

Vampire: The Masquerade - Swansong is coming to Epic Games Store, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch in 2021.
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NASCAR Heat 5 Gold Edition Races Out

NASCAR Heat 5 Gold Edition is now available, offer the first crack at this stock car racing game bonus content. Word is: "The Gold Edition provides players with tons of exclusive content featuring NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart, the NASCAR Heat 5 Season Pass (containing four DLC packs), and in-game cash to kick-start your team." The lower-priced standard edition will follow on Friday without the extras. Here's the Launch Trailer and here's word on the game:
NASCAR Heat 5 delivers the ultimate NASCAR video game experience, with 34 authentic tracks across the country in single player, two-player split screen, and online multiplayer for up to 40 racers. Along with cover star Chase Elliott, NASCAR Heat 5 includes all the official teams, cars and drivers from the NASCAR Cup Series, as well as the NASCAR Xfinity Series™, NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series™, and Xtreme Dirt Series.

New to NASCAR Heat 5 are several gameplay additions and enhancements, as well as the franchise’s deepest Career Mode ever, with improved statistics and more customization choices than ever before. The game also adds online challenges and a new Testing Mode, letting you perfect your setup for each track.
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Sky Beneath Announced

Mindhaven Games announce Sky Beneath, a gravity-defying puzzle game coming to Steam and consoles next year. This trailer shows off the sci-fi setting and some imaginative gameplay. Here's more on what to expect:
Mindhaven Games are proud to unveil that its gravity-defying puzzle adventure Sky Beneath is coming to PC and consoles in 2021. Get ready to embark on a rip-roaring sci-fi yarn where up and down are all relative!

In Sky Beneath players assume the role of Cassie, an intrepid scavenger seeking salvage in abandoned mining facilities. Aided by her inventor friend Annie and the use of advanced alien technology, Cassie takes control of the gravity to walk on walls and ceilings and change the gravity direction of objects around her. Up and down are all relative in this mind-bending adventure!
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Steelrising Announced

Also at today's Nacon Connect was the announcement of Steelrising, a new action/RPG from Spiders. They promise more on this from the Steelrising Website, but that is not yet properly configured as of this writing. They also offer a Teaser Trailer with some robot porn, but no gameplay. Word is this imagines a world where robots helped determine the outcome of the French Revolution:
For fans of Action RPGs, there was also good news with the announcement of Steelrising, the new project from the development studio Spiders. Jehanne Rousseau and her team place you in the heart of an alternate Paris during the French Revolution, where the automaton army of King Louis XVI is terrorizing and suppressing the French people. Aegis, the main character, will fight against this reign of terror to try and change the course of History.
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RiMS Racing Announced

Another motorsports game announced at Nacon Connect is RiMS Racing, a motorcycle game. There's no media for this yet, just the following description of what they characterize as a very ambitious project:
RiMS Racing is a game in development at RaceWard Studio, a Milan-based team of experts that have been developing motorcycle racing games for 20 years. This simulation is based on a unique and innovative concept that makes bike mechanics a core element of the game experience. Fans will love the bike behaviour, which has benefited from the work done by KT Racing on its proprietary game engine.

Roguebook Revealed

The final new game announced at today's Nacon Connect is Roguebook. This is pretty vague for now, as they describe a deckbuilding game with a strong pedigree:
Roguebook is a roguelike deck-builder developed by the Belgian studio Abrakam, creators of the game Faeria. With support from the renowned creator of Magic: The Gathering, Richard Garfield, who adds his expertise as the game's co-designer, Roguebook features innovative game mechanics and a world that fans of the genre will love.

For the People Early Access This Month

For the People will come to Early Access on Steam on July 30th, offering an "acute social novel with strategic elements" for Windows. This puts the player in the role of a state official in an alternate-history version of the Soviet Union. In the meantime there's a playable demo you can check out right now. Here's a new trailer along with word on what to expect:
101XP and Brezg Studios have revealed that their politically charged strategy game For the People is coming to Steam and 101XP.com on July 30th. In this tongue-in-cheek look at the USSR’s totalitarian regime, you assume the role of Francis River, the newly elected mayor in the Soviet inspired Commonwealth of Orange Collectives. From the start this is a difficult position, as you must walk the line between enforcing the status quo and bringing about change, making challenging moral and political decisions regarding economic distribution and social policies. How far are you willing to go... for the people?

As mayor of Iron-1 you will be expected to strike a balance between strengthening your political party to maintain power and working towards the nation’s long term growth, while also keeping the people happy. You will soon find that this is an inherently impossible task. There is no pleasing everyone, and your ethics and morals will constantly be tested as you are torn between different allegiances and values.
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Op Ed

  • GamesIndustry.biz - We need a movement to tackle systemic abuse, not a moment.
    "Before long, the cycle will continue, and it will be years, again, before we have another week like this. The 'moment' will pass, and the false peace will return. Order will be restored, because truthfully, in the case of systemic oppression, hundreds of people can scream for years, but only be heard for a moment."

Halo 3 PC Next Week

Microsoft celebrates Bungie Day by announcing Halo 3 will come to Windows on July 14th when the shooter sequel is added to Halo: The Master Chief Collection. This is noted on the Xbox Website along with a reminder that it is included in the Xbox Game Pass for PC (Beta). The news is highlighted in a new Finish The Fight Trailer, which offers the following brief description:
Halo 3 is coming to Halo: The Master Chief Collection for PC on July 14, 2020! Now optimized for PC, prepare to finish the fight in this epic conclusion to the original trilogy on Xbox Game Pass for PC (Beta), Microsoft Store, and Steam. Learn more at https://xbox.com/Halo!

F1 2020 Deluxe Schumacher Edition Races Out

Codemasters announces the release of F1 2020 Deluxe Schumacher Edition, a special version of the new installment in their Formula One racing series. This is taking the starting flag ahead of the release of the regular edition of the game, which is expected on Friday. The Windows version is available in stores and on Steam. This Deluxe Schumacher Edition Trailer shows off the four of Michael Schumacher's classic cars included in this edition while recapping the career of the legendary German driver. Here's word on the special content:
It's time to take a look at the four iconic cars included in the Deluxe Schumacher Edition.

  • 1991: Jordan 191
  • 1994: Benetton B194
  • 1995: Benetton B195
  • 2000: Ferrari F1-2000

You'll also receive Michael’s Ferrari F2004 as part of the F1® 2020 classic car line-up. The car is updated to include #1 on the nosecone and his name embossed on the headrest, as well as exclusive content including themed car liveries and driver customisation items, including a unique podium celebration. Alongside the Schumacher content, you'll also receive an exclusive set of in-game items celebrating the Seventieth Anniversary of Formula 1®. A Limited Edition F1® 2020 Steelbook, also featuring Michael Schumacher, is now available in local markets via selected retailers.

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Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning Delay and Expansion Announced

THQ Nordic announces a three-week delay to our day of re-reckoning, saying the release of Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning will now come on September 8th. This remake of the 2012 RPG from Big Huge Games and 38 Studios was announced with an August 18th release date. The new announcement does not acknowledge the setback, so it goes unexplained. It does mention plans for an expansion called Fatesworn that's expected next year and is in what they are calling the Fate Edition. They also are offering a Collector's Edition with physical rewards which are shown off in this trailer. Preorders for either of those or the vanilla Standard Edition are now underway, and this page can help sort through the options. The news is accompanied by a new trailer, but this is a cinematic clip that features no gameplay. Here's the deal:
The day of the Re-Reckoning has come: THQ Nordic today confirmed that Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is scheduled for release September 8, 2020! The hit RPG will be making its appearance on PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox® One with stunning visuals, refined gameplay, and all new content. Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is available for pre-order effective today.

In addition, we have a little extra to look forward to: The adventures in Amalur will continue in 2021 with a brand new expansion: Fatesworn. Details will follow later.
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Sennheiser Announces EPOS Line

Sennheiser announces they are launching a new division called EPOS dedicated to premium audio hardware for gaming. The first products from this are expected in October. We should probably expect to hear a lot about them between now ant then, as they outline plans for an extensive promotional campaign and esports sponsorships. Here's the first taste of that, a promotional video kicking off an image campaign. They say their products will bring you the happiness you seek: "At EPOS, we want to give the market a new perspective on how audio can enhance the gaming experience," says Maja Sand-Grimnitz, Head of Global Marketing. "As a new brand with a solid audio heritage and future, the campaign and promise ‘Out of this world gaming audio’ will resonate with gamers, who are truly looking for the best way to maximise their gaming experience. Premium audio can enhance that feeling and this message is at the heart of the campaign. We want to make EPOS the golden ticket to the best gaming experience and a happier you.” So far they only mention a line of headsets, which they promise will provide "an unparalleled balm to the brain":
EPOS, a newly formed company dedicated to the creation of high-end audio equipment for Gaming and Enterprise Solutions, proudly announces the official launch of their global gaming campaign. Built on the principles of uncompromising audio engineering, contemporary aesthetics and superb build quality, the EPOS brand in the gaming segment exists to serve gamers who demand absolute excellence from their equipment to maximise their gaming experience. Crafted to last, and designed to excite, the EPOS range of headsets will become the definitive gaming audio solution for those who share the EPOS passion for performance.

Built upon Demant’s 115 years of experience in sound and innovation and building on the legacy of Sennheiser Communications A/S, EPOS will sell the Sennheiser Communications gaming portfolio as co-branded EPOS | SENNHEISER whilst also introducing an exceptional new portfolio of premium EPOS branded products. The first major EPOS-only branded gaming product launch is set for October 2020.
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Death Crown Demonic Menace in November

CO5MONAUT announces a November release for Demonic Menace, new DLC for Death Crown, their minimalist real-time strategy game where you play as Death. On a related note, the game is currently on sale on Steam for half-off. This trailer shows off the new DLC, which continues the game's throwback monochromatic style. Here's word on what the Demonic Menace holds:
The King has fallen. The people suffered a crushing defeat in the war against the Death. But not all of them were ready to come to terms with this situation. The group of King's Warlocks decided to avenge the Queen of Death for their humiliation. They opened an ancient portal and summoned hordes of demons to help.

Lead the Demon invasion and go down to the giant Undead's Dungeons to face Death.

  • New Game Faction - Demons
  • New Campaign - DEMONIC MENACE
  • New Map - Undead's Dungeons
  • New Terrain - Dungeons
  • New Landscape Features - spike traps and chests
  • 21 New Mission
  • 4 New Bosses (with new mechanics)
  • 5 New Epic Cutscenes

Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Crowdfunding

Out of the Blue

MrsBlue alerted me to a 30-Day Well Challenge being presented by the New York Times, so we're both giving it a go to fight our inactivity. Day one yesterday was a light workout, but today promised to be even easier, as it is listed as a "tooth brushing meditation." So how hard could that be? Even after I learned that this involved brushing your teeth while standing on one foot with your eyes closed I was pretty undaunted, as my sense of balance is my best bit of physical coordination. As it turns out this is far more difficult than it sounds, as I never realized how much vision plays into balance. I found it impossible to do this properly, and am now determined to keep at it until it's not. So if I end up dying in a teethbrushing related accident, you'll know why.

Balanced Links
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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