Archived News:

Thursday, Nov 19, 2020 Half-Life's Anniversary (1998)

Get Elite Dangerous and The World Next Door for Free

The Epic Games Store now offers this week's promised free games, so you can now take off in Elite Dangerous and/or visit The World Next Door at no cost. As always, these are yours to keep if you snag them over the coming seven days. After that, their new giveaway will begin, which will be MudRunner. In case you need to be sold on freebies, here's the sales pitch for the gratis games:
Take control of your own starship in a cutthroat galaxy. Elite Dangerous is the definitive massively multiplayer space epic, bringing gaming’s original open world adventure to the modern generation with an evolving narrative and the entirety of the Milky Way.

A mix of lightning-fast puzzle battles, powerful storytelling, and immersive visual novel elements, The World Next Door follows Jun, a rebellious teen trapped in a parallel realm inhabited by magical creatures, who must find her way home before time runs out.

Fortnite Streaming Back onto iOS

The NVIDIA Blog has a confirmation of previous indications that Fortnite is returning to Apple iPhones, as it will be playable in the Safari Browser via the GeForce NOW streaming service. The game was dumped from the App Store as part of the royalty dispute between Epic and Apple, but a way to stream the game bypasses the App Store entirely. NVIDIA announces that GeForce NOW members can now play PC games on the iPhone and iPad, and soon Fortnite will be one of them, as soon as they work out allowing the game to support touch controls:

Alongside the amazing team at Epic Games, we’re working to enable a touch-friendly version of Fortnite, which will delay availability of the game. While the GeForce NOW library is best experienced on mobile with a gamepad, touch is how over 100 million Fortnite gamers have built, battled and danced their way to Victory Royale.

We’re looking forward to delivering a cloud-streaming Fortnite mobile experience powered by GeForce NOW. Members can look for the game on iOS Safari soon.

Cyberpunk 2077 Gameplay and Soundtrack Videos

Night City Wire- Episode 5 is the promised fifth video preview for Cyberpunk 2077. This offers a lot on the Johnny Silverhand character and the participation of actor Keanu Reeves in bringing him to life in the game. They also discuss the musical score in the sci-fi RPG and the now have a playlist of songs from the original soundtrack. There's also a new Official Gameplay Trailer to show off more action from the highly anticipated project. Here's more on that clip:
The video features over 5 minutes of in-game footage thrusting gamers deep into the most dangerous megalopolis of the year 2077 — Night City. Never-before-seen interactions and action scenes are shown, revealing details about the story, as well as characters — including their backgrounds and motivations. In addition to discussing the primary objective of the game’s protagonist, the up and coming cyber-enhanced mercenary going by the name V, part of the trailer is also devoted to giving players a fresh glimpse into character development and some of the side activities they will be able to indulge in.
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Shenmue III on GOG.com and Steam

The Windows edition of Shenmue III is now available on GOG.com and Steam, following the game's exclusive run on the Epic Games Store, which began exactly one year ago today. To celebrate the occasion, the game and its DLC are currently on sale for up to 66% off. Here's the dope on YS Net's latest installment in the action/adventure series:
Journey deep into rural China as you take on the role of Ryo Hazuki, a Japanese teenager hellbent on finding his father’s killer. Shenmue is the story of adventure, mystery, friendship, martial arts, and ultimately - revenge.

Key Features:

One of the most anticipated video games in history, from legendary game developer, Yu Suzuki.

  • Epic Adventure – Immerse yourself in the stunning and magical world of Shenmue
  • Breathing, Living World – Explore inside and outside buildings, take on part-time jobs, play arcade games, and interact with local inhabitants of beautiful Chinese locales
  • Martial Arts Action – Put your training and upgraded skills to the test via intense free battles and Quick Time Events
  • Solve the Mystery – Converse with a colorful and diverse cast of characters and follow leads from those who hold the answers to the mysterious Phoenix Mirror…
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Trine 4 Melody of Mystery Released

Melody of Mystery is now available GOG.com, the Humble Store*, and Steam, providing an expansion for Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince (*Blue's News may receive a commission on sales of this item). This is a new campaign for the action/adventure that's shown off in this Launch Trailer and explained below:
Trine 4: Melody of Mystery is a 6-level story campaign that continues the travels of Amadeus, Pontius, and Zoya. The new adventure features more upgrades for the heroes' skills, and fresh puzzles with clever gameplay elements for our heroes to take on.
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Super Buckyball Tournament Preseason

Super Buckyball Tournament Preseason is now underway on Steam, offering the chance to sample this upcoming Windows action/strategy game for free between now and December 6th. Here's an Official Launch Trailer with a look, and here is an explanation of this 3v3 esports game from My Time at Portia developer Pathea Games:
In addition to the six characters, two stadiums and mission system featured during the game’s open alpha earlier this year, preseason content will include new challenger Samba, two Arcade modes (Dodgeball mode and Mayhem mode), a new lobby, in-game background music, a comprehensive collection of skins (which includes accessories and player icons), and a season pass with 60 levels. Fans will be able to level up their season pass by completing daily and weekly challenges and earning special rewards.
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Warhammer: Vermintide 2 Outcast Engineer Career Released

The Outcast Engineer Career DLC is now available on Steam, offering new content for Warhammer: Vermintide 2, the Windows melee combat sequel. Here's an Outcast Engineer Career Trailer you can shake like a Polaroid picture. Here's more on the new career:
Dwarfs are tradition-minded people, trusting the wisdom of their ancestors and their aged longbeards rather than any new ideas or innovation. Their traditionalism carries through to everything dwarfs do, including their engineering, and perhaps as a result dwarfs are the finest engineers in the world - just ask any dwarf.
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Gatherings & Competitions

Project 007 Announced

Interactive announces Project 007 is the project they teased yesterday. As the name suggests, this is centered around Bond, James Bond, the iconic MI6 super-spy of books and movies. They say the game is currently in active development, and while they don't go into too much detail, they say it will be an origin story for the character. The Teaser Trailer is a nothingburger, though it does feature the classic James Bond theme song. Here's what they are revealing for now:
It’s Bond, James Bond, coming to a console and computer screen near you. IO Interactive, in collaboration with MGM, EON Productions and Delphi announced today that they are developing and publishing the very first James Bond origin story with the working title Project 007. Project 007 will feature a wholly original Bond story exclusively as a video game.

Over the last two decades, IO Interactive has created, developed and published multiple award-winning titles in the stealth and espionage video game genre, including the acclaimed Hitman franchise. Project 007 will be powered by IO Interactive’s proprietary Glacier technology. The game will be made for modern systems and platforms.
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Marvel's Avengers Operation: Kate Bishop Next Month

SQUARE ENIX announces that Operation: Kate Bishop will go into full effect on December 8th, offering the first post-release content for Marvel's Avengers. Here's a WAR TABLE Deep Dive video that accompanies the news, and here's more on the new playable character and new campaign this will bring to the superheroic action/adventure:
Today, SQUARE ENIX® announced that the first new playable Super Hero for Marvel’s Avengers will launch as part of Operation: Kate Bishop – Taking AIM on December 8, 2020. In addition to a new playable Super Hero in Kate Bishop and the new chapter in the game’s ongoing Avengers Initiative story, Marvel’s Avengers Operation: Kate Bishop – Taking AIM will also introduce a powerful new villain, the Super Adaptoid, that will challenge players with a combination of skills and weaponry that mimic the Avengers’ attacks.

The lead-up to Taking AIM began with enigmatic new Tachyon missions that started appearing on players’ in-game War Tables several weeks ago. In Taking AIM, Kate Bishop, master archer and skilled gymnast, resurfaces after her investigation of Nick Fury’s disappearance following A-Day leads to her mentor Clint Barton (aka Hawkeye) going missing as well. As she unravels the mystery behind the sudden appearance of the time-warping Tachyon Rifts, she uncovers a twisted new plan from AIM, which pushes her to work with the Avengers once again.

Taking AIM’s story begins shortly after the conclusion of Marvel’s Avengers’ Reassemble campaign and is just the first half of the two Hawkeyes’ Story Arc. Clint Barton’s Hawkeye will then take the stage in early 2021 to complete the double-feature and lay the groundwork for what’s next in the Avengers Initiative.
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Total War: WARHAMMER II Twisted & The Twilight DLC Next Month

Creative Assembly announces a new Twisted & The Twilight pack for Total War: WARHAMMER II that will come to the fantasy strategy game on December 3rd. They say this will come along some free content for all owners of the game. They say this "free-LC" is yet-to-be announced, and it's not clear if it's among the freebies teased in this recent post. You can see a bit of Twisted & The Twilight in the Announce Trailer. They say the pack is now available for preorder with a 10% discount, and while the listing isn't live yet, it will probably show up soon. All there is to know about this can be found in this FAQ, and here's more on the plan:
THE TWISTED & THE TWILIGHT Lords Pack introduces two new Legendary Lords to Total War: WARHAMMER II, with the abominable Throt The Unclean facing off against the earthly Sisters of Twilight. These characters welcome in new and unique campaign and faction mechanics, as well as a multitude of ruinous warriors and beasts such as Zoats, Great Stag Knights, Wolf Rats, Pack Masters and more.

THE TWISTED & THE TWILIGHT also includes some yet-to-be announced Free-LC to all players of Total War: WARHAMMER II. Not only that, but we are also giving a little extra back to our fans who have joined us on this perilous journey through the Warhammer world. More information about this can be found within the FAQ linked below.
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Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead Released

Mind the gap! Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead is now available for Windows, macOS, Linux, Xbox Series X, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Switch (a PlayStation 5 edition is on the way). The PC editions can be found on GOG.com, Epic Games Store, Steam. This combines the puzzle/building of the Bridge Constructor series with the post-apocalyptic horror of The Walking Dead, or as Samuel L. Jackson might put it, "I've had it with these motherf**king zombies on this motherf**king bridge!" The game carries a 10% launch discount as well as a loyalty bonus for owners of other Bridge Constructor games. The latest Official Gameplay Trailer takes a look, and here's more:
Join a group of survivors as they fight against hordes of undead walkers and a hostile human community. Build bridges and other constructions through bleak landscapes and ruined structures.

Team up with fan-favourite characters like Daryl, Michonne and Eugene, and create safe passage for iconic vehicles from the series. Use movable level objects, explosives and baits to your advantage as you lure walkers into lethal traps and guide your survivors to safety. Enjoy the physics-based frenzy and ragdoll animations as walkers succumb to the forces of gravity.

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PAC-MAN Entering Comic-Con Museum Character Hall of Fame

BANDAI NAMCO announces that PAC-MAN is to be inducted into the Comic-Con Museum Character Hall of Fame (MCHOF). We assume you're saying, "but PAC-MAN isn't a comic book character, but that is probably a secondary thought after you're done asking, "there's a Comic-Con Museum Character Hall of Fame?" Word is the big yellow pill-popper is the first ever video game character to receive this obscure honor. The envelope please:
Born on May 22, 1980, PAC-MAN immediately rose to meteoric popularity, first in video game arcades, then on the pop culture stage, and later through an array of branding and entertainment appearances throughout the 1980s and 1990s. With a worldwide brand recognition rate of 90%, PAC-MAN continues to be one of the most recognized images and brands on the planet. Featuring a simple pick-up-and-play yet challenging-to-master gameplay design, PAC-MAN was created to buck the trend of arcade games that were commonly designed to attract male players. Instead, PAC-MAN was created to appeal to both male and female players and to be appropriate for players of all ages. These core design principles contributed to making PAC-MAN the family-friendly character he is today and delivering on his goal of bringing more fun to everyone no matter their gender or age.

The MCHOF induction process will comprise of multiple parts, starting with a character tribute dedicated to PAC-MAN’s 40-year history through exclusive online content as well as an award and online induction ceremony. The many creators and developers who have contributed to PAC-MAN’s status as an icon will also be recognized and honored. PAC-MAN fans will also be part of the celebration as commemorative T-shirts and pins will be made available and they can participate in virtual museum experiences.

Out of the Blue

Man! It's still autumn, but it's getting awfully wintery around here these days. The past couple of mornings have been around 20℉, so someone's getting a lot of January into my November. It's supposed to be much warmer tomorrow, but this just reminds me that I'm not actually going anywhere these days, so I'm not sure what I'm complaining about.

Anyway, today is this week's second Half-Life anniversary, as the original game is 22 years-old today. Happy birthday Gordon. They're waiting for you... in the test-chamber.

Obituary: Bobby Brown Jr., the son of singer Bobby Brown, dies at 28.

Chilly Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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