Archived News:

Tuesday, Jun 08, 2021 World Oceans Day

Chivalry 2 Released

Those who bemoan the lack of chivalry in modern life did not anticipate the release of Chivalry 2, the medieval combat sequel developed by Torn Banner Studios and published by Tripwire Interactive. This is now available for PC and consoles, and the home of the Windows edition is the Epic Games Store. Here's the Launch Trailer and here are the chivalrous details:
Chivalry 2 is a multiplayer first-person slasher inspired by epic medieval movie battles. Players are thrust into the action of every iconic moment of the era from clashing swords and storms of flaming arrows to sprawling castle sieges, and more. Dominate massive battlefields while catapults tear the earth apart as players lay siege to castles, set fire to villages, and slaughter filthy peasants in the return of Team Objective maps.

Improving on the original genre-defining Chivalry: Medieval Warfare in every way, Chivalry 2 invites players to master the blade with an all-new and improved combat system that combines real-time strikes and a free-flowing combo system to speed up the action and let players become a whirlwind of steel on the battlefield. Created with the ability to fight multiple foes in mind, Chivalry 2’s combat mixes the best of both FPS and fighting game genres for an unmatched melee experience.

Rollers of the Realm: Reunion Announced

Rollers of the Realm developer Phantom Compass announces Rollers of the Realm: Reunion, a follow-up to the 2014 pinball action/RPG hybrid. The new game will come to the Epic Games Store and Steam in 2022, and to celebrate, the original Rollers of the Realm is currently on sale on Steam for 80% off. Here's the Announcement Teaser and here's more on this game where you give your enemies no quarter:
Rollers of the Realm: Reunion — sequel to the winner of GDC’s prestigious “Best in Play” award in 2014 — is a medieval-themed RPG featuring a clever spin on pinball where the ball features attributes similar to a traditional RPG character. Play as the Rogue and her faithful hound, as they, in the form of a small and fast ball, sneak and steal their way through and around challenges. Or load up the massive Knight ball and bash those town guards and otherworldly monsters! Players will roll throughout the land alone or with a friend in search of powerful ancient artifacts, sweet gear upgrades, and NPC allies in a quest to save the world from certain doom. This is no turn-based affair, as the storyline and character progression take place across scenic pinball playfields! In order to become a hero of legend, players must flip, dash, and nudge their way through every battle or maze. “Pinheads” better brush up on magical incantations and learn to wield an array of awesome character abilities — there’s more than one realm that needs saving!
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Rogue Lords Closed Beta Extended

NACON, Cyanide, and Leikir Studio announce that closed beta testing of Rogue Lords is being extended another week, and will now conclude on June 14th. This will lead up to the game's appearance at the Steam Next Fest from June 16th to 22nd, where everyone will have access to a free demo. But those interested in getting in on the ground floor, this means there's still a chance to register for the closed beta on the official website. The news comes with a new Beta Trailer and these details:
The closed beta was due to finish today, but it has been extended for a further week, until June 14. This means more players can register on rogue-lords.com to get a preview of this turn-based roguelike with unique mechanics. To defeat your enemies, you must change the rules of the game to your advantage. By sacrificing some of your Diabolic Essence, you can play with the life bars, exchange bonuses and malus, or cheat with the probabilities of success. With this power, along with Bloody Mary, Dracula and the Headless Horseman as allies, you can play the tutorial and first part of the story.

Rogue Lords will be shown at Steam Next Fest from June 16 to 22. During the event, a playable demo will be available. It's a dream month for roguelike fans.
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UFO2: Extraterrestrials Next Week

Chaos Concept announces UFO2: Extraterrestrials will be infiltrating Steam one week from today on June 15th. It was less than a month ago that we were told to expect the counter-UFO strategy/tactics game this summer, and it turns out the game is beating that deadline by all of five days. The game's listing is like an interrogation: "Are strategy games with strong RPG elements your cup of tea? Did you enjoy games like Xcom: UFO Defence, the Fallout series, the Civilization series, the Heroes of Might and magic? And now you are looking for something new to satisfy your craving for turn-based fun?" However, it also provides some answers:
UFO2Extraterrestrials: Battle for Mercury

  • A fully 3D game combining real-time global strategy & air combat with turn-based tactical missions
  • A turn-based “I-Go-You-Go“ tactical squad-based game system
  • Interactive environments with destructible terrain
  • A large number of technologies, weapons, and combat units to develop
  • A large number of aliens to interrogate
  • Strong RPG elements where soldiers’ stats improve with experience
  • Dynamic lighting for intense fire-fights
  • Final Gameplay design and balance tweaks by the author of the popular original UFO: ET Bman Ease of Use Mod

GWENT: Once Upon A Pyre Released

CD PROJEKT RED announces that Once Upon A Pyre is now available, offering the first expansion for GWENT: A Witcher Card Game. This free download includes 26 new cards, and kicks off the storyline behind the Price of Power set. As noted here, it also marks the launch of the Season of Magic in the card-based strategy game and comes along with Update 9.0 for the game. Here are the Version 9.0 Patch Notes, while this page goes over the new cards and discusses how to obtain them.

Golf Club Wasteland Announced

Fore! IGN offers an Official Announcement Trailer for Golf Club Wasteland, an upcoming simulation of how determined some golfers are to get in a round. As the name suggests, this side-scrolling sports/puzzle game features the return to a post-apocalyptic Earth by some of the wealthy who escaped the planet's destruction on Mars. The game has a Steam Listing that carries an August 2021 release window. Here's what's par for the course:
The rich fled to Mars but venture back to a desolate Earth for a round of golf. Each hole in the wasteland offers its own little story and possible puzzle to sink the perfect shot. Play through destroyed brutalist monuments, crumbling shopping malls, and abandoned museums as neon signs and poignant graffiti take swings at current events, Silicon Valley culture and humanity.
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Gatherings & Competitions

Homeworld 3 Fig Investments Cancelled

A post from last week on NME notes a thread on Reddit that has an email alleging that the Fig crowdfunding program for Homeworld 3 has been cancelled, likely due to Embracer group's acquisition of Gearbox Software. Since the Preorder on Fig Page is still live for the upcoming space strategy sequel, we wrote Gearbox over the weekend for clarification, but received no reply. Now GamesIndustry.biz has picked up the story, saying they too have unsuccessfully asked Gearbox for comment. But they also have a response from FIG CEO Justin Bailey confirming the mail to FIG backer is authentic, but that "no money ever changed hands. Fig's fundraising differs from sites like Kickstarter and Gofundme by offering backers a chance to share in the profits of their investments. Here's the letter posted to Reddit:
First off, we want to let you know that everything is on-track with Homeworld 3’s development. We hope you’re as excited as we are for this long-awaited game.

As you may be aware, there have been recent changes at Gearbox. Due to these developments, Fig will no longer be collecting investment reservations for Homeworld 3, and all investors that placed an investment reservation in Homeworld 3 will NOT have that investment collected. Rest assured knowing that Fig never charged you for your investment reservation and that this will not affect Homeworld 3 pre-orders. In addition, the game and all associated rewards are still coming to those who purchased them.

We know that this will come as a disappointment to some of you that were waiting to invest in the success of this incredible game. Since partnering with Republic, we have changed how we do investments, and now we collect the money upfront and confirm the investments once the campaign crosses the minimum threshold agreed to by the developer and Fig. We currently have two opportunities available, starting with one that is leveraging legendary IPs like Homeworld for future remakes/remasters in an investment portfolio approach.

Get Warhammer Underworlds: Online for Free

Warhammer Underworlds: Online is currently being given away on Steam, offering the chance to enter the arena in this PvP strategy combat game for free. Here's what happens if you play you cards right and roll the dice on this offer:
Warhammer Underworlds: Online is a digital adaptation of the explosive, high-stakes, turn-based strategy tabletop game from Games Workshop that pits mighty warbands from the Age of Sigmar universe against one another in an eternal player versus player battle for Glory. Choose a warband, build your decks and carve a path to victory using dice-and-card mechanics that offer boundless strategic depth.

Trapped within the towering spires of the Mirrored City of Shadespire, six warbands battle it out for survival - each with unique abilities and a distinct combat style. Choose to play as the valiant Stormcast Eternals armed with heaven-forged weaponry, or the merciless Blood Warriors of Khorne, tearing apart their enemies with the aid of their loyal Flesh Hound.

Wasteland 3: The Battle of Steeltown Released

Wasteland 3: The Battle of Steeltown is now available on GOG.com and on Steam, offering a new narrative content pack for Wasteland 3, inXile's post-apocalyptic RPG sequel for Windows, macOS, and Linux. This is also offered as part of a Wasteland 3 Expansion Pass on Steam which also includes a second add-on planned for this summer. Here's a Launch Trailer along with more on what's going down in Steeltown:
The towering factory complex of Steeltown manufactures all the tech that keeps Colorado running and the Patriarch in power—trucks, armor, weapons, and robots. But deliveries from Steeltown have stopped cold, and all the Patriarch is getting from Abigail Markham—Steeltown's leader—are excuses. When he sends the Rangers to investigate, they find the place is a powder keg with the fuse already lit. The workers are striking, bandits raid with impunity, and nobody is allowed through the gates, not even on the business of the Patriarch. Without help, Steeltown could crash and burn for good, and take Markham with it—but maybe that's just what it needs. The Rangers will have to decide that for themselves.
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Garbage Released

Garbage is available for Windows and macOS on Steam, offering a Shirley Manson-free fighting simulator from developer Homebased and publisher GrabTheGames. This features a homeless protagonist and a decidedly edgy bent, freely throwing around terms like "hobo" and "bum," but this seems to strike a chord, as the reviews so far are "mostly positive." This post has the patch notes for a new version 1.03 update, and a previously released trailer offers a flatulent introduction to the concept. Here's a recyclable description:
Garbage is a fighting simulator game with management and building elements. Experience the struggle which a homeless man goes through in a humorous yet non-offensive manner. Primitive elements of contemporary life that we take for granted, such as staying warm, well-nourished, and hygienic, will become an issue.

  • Experience a chilling story through hand drawn comics that narrate the silliness of Garbage world. Don't experience any of the negative emotions while being sucked in by the Garbage.
  • Garbage world features a grim city environment with Garbage visual effects and catchy music. Listen to unique sounding character voices that resemble no words but a weird hobo mumble.
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Sword of the Necromancer Free DLC This Month

Grimorio of Games and JanduSoft announce a new Extra Modes DLC pack is coming for free on June 24th for Sword of the Necromancer, the roguelike, dungeon-crawler, action/RPG for Windows, Linux, and consoles. Word is: "With these new game modes, players can jump back into the world of Sword of the Necromancer to face new foes and dominate the dungeons." Here's more:
The free Extra Modes DLC for Sword of the Necromancer will introduce 3 new game modes to put your skills to test. You will also face 10 new monsters and 8 new bosses! Complete the Extra modes to unlock the Epilogue, a brand new chapter in the story!

Sword of the Necromancer is a dungeon-crawler action-RPG with roguelike elements where you can revive your defeated enemies to make them fight alongside you. Turn your foes into allies using the forbidden powers of the Sword of the Necromancer and help the rogue Tama reach the dungeon's depths to gather enough power to bring her beloved priestess Koko back from the dead. Assemble a small army of monsters, equip yourself with weapons and relics, and level up to take on the guardians that stand between you and your goal.

Urban Trial Tricky Deluxe Edition Next Month

Tate Multimedia announces Urban Trial Tricky Deluxe Edition, a new version that will bring the motocross stunt-riding game to Windows via GOG.COM and Steam, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on July 22nd. This edition of the game supports 60 fps gameplay on PC, as shown off in this new trailer. Just remember it's tricky to rock a rhyme that's right on time. Here's what to expect:
Key Features of Urban Trial Tricky™ Deluxe Edition:

  • It’s Tricky Tricky Tricky: It wouldn’t be “Freestyle” motocross without the tricks, and Urban Trial Tricky™ Deluxe Edition features a deep set of stunts, spins, and sick grabs to experiment with
  • 60 Frames of Fun Per Second: A slick and smooth experience awaits players looking to take their freestyle insanity to all new heights
    Customize Your Kit: An extensive set of cool accessories and paint jobs provides players with a huge suite of options to make their rider look as good as they rip
  • Crush the Opposition: Online leaderboards keep the competition strong and will push players to ever more extreme combos and high-scores
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Indigo 7 Announced

Dolores Entertainment announces Indigo 7, a puzzle/adventure coming in July to PC via Steam, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and Switch. This is a single-player and multiplayer game inspired by 7 Colors and Puyo Puyo Tetris. As you can tell from the trailer this is set in the glory days of the 1980s and 1990s:
Indigo 7 tells the story of Nathan and his music band, who go on holiday together after him being dumped by his girlfriend. In a beautiful coastal city where the Sun seems to make everything brighter, the boy finally recovers his will to live after meeting a girl named Debbie and becoming involved in a battle of bands with his friends. But the path to success won’t be so easy, since Nathan starts finding new rivals that come between him and his happy ending. In that situation, there’s only one thing to do: smash them with the power of music!
Continue here to read the full story.

Out of the Blue

It looks like the E3 media week is definitely more of a run-up to the show than any sort of "soft launch" as it didn't generate much buzz, at least so far. So we'll lower the alert state to DEFCON 2 for the time being. Right now the best guess for when things will really heat up is Thursday's Summer Game Fest.

Obituary: John Wilson, founder of legendary text adventure publisher Zenobi Software.
Obituary: Former New York Giants head coach Jim Fassel dies at 71.

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Monday, Jun 07, 2021

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time Remake Next Year

In a post on Twitter, Ubisoft announces the release of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time Remake is now expected in 2022. Ubisoft's first full remake is certainly living up to the time-traveling mechanic in its title. It was first announced with a January 21, 2021 release date, but an announcement soon followed saying it was being pushed back to March 18th. Not long after that we got to do the time warp again, but this time the delay included no specific new release date. The new announcement likewise does not specify when the prince will be wall-running back into our hearts, but it does say it won't happen this year. Likewise, the game will not be on display at the Ubisoft Forward event on Saturday:
Ubisoft Forward is around the corner and we wanted to use this time to thank you for the amount of support you have shown us in the past year.

As you might have already read, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time Remake will not be in Ubisoft Forward. We're making great progress for our game to release next year, but we're not ready to share any additional information just yet. We'll share an update as soon as we are ready.

Until then, we wanted to express our appreciation for your continuous support, as well as your patience with us on our journey. We're looking forward to the moment when we will be able to share more with you.

Battlefield Teasing Intensifies

A tweet from DICE teases Wednesday's reveal of the next Battlefield game, which will take place on YouTube. As noted on VGC, the odd static in the tweet is now part of the intros to Battlefield V, Battlefield 1, and Battlefield 4, so the hype train is real. VGC refers to the game as Battlefield 2042, which fits in with another recent rumor, though this seems to have originated on 4chan.

They Always Run Testing

They Always Run is a 2D platformer in the works at Alawar Premium that puts the player in the role of a three-armed mutant bounty hunter. The full release is expected this year, but in the meantime, a public playtest is now underway. If you're interested, all you have to do is hit the "request access" button on the game's Steam Listing. Here's a recent Teaser Trailer showing off gameplay, and here's a bit on the game:
The galaxy's inhabitants have been swamped by crime since the fall of the empire. Being able to find anyone, anywhere has become a highly prized skill.

Aidan is a three-armed bounty hunter who must hunt down the most dangerous and elusive cutthroats in the galaxy.

Some bounties are rewarded with money, others with valuable information that Aidan can use to find the people who set him on this path – all while getting embroiled in a galaxy-wide conspiracy.

Having three arms lets you deal with more enemies at once and makes for a persuasive argument in any scuffle. Use your third arm to perform targeted attacks and throws, manipulate the environment, destroy obstacles, and wreck enemies.
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Rainbow Six Extraction Reveal Saturday

Ubisoft announces a full reveal for Rainbow Six Extraction will come during Ubisoft Forward, the online event scheduled for next Saturday. Extraction is the new installment in the shooter series that was announced with the title Rainbow Six Quarantine before pandemic associations caused that to be replaced with the placeholder name Rainbow Six Parasite. You'll be able to stream Ubisoft Forward here on June 12th at 3:00 pm EDT. In the meantime, a new Rainbow Six Extraction: Sprawl Teaser and a new Dev Team Title Reveal Video can help tide us over. Continue here to read the full story.

Gearbox Thursday Reveal is Wonderlands?

A tweet from Geoff Keighley informs us that a new adventure game from Gearbox and 2K games will be revealed on Thursday during the kickoff of Summer Game Fest. Word is: "Prepare for the reveal of a new adventure from @GearboxOfficial and @2K during #SummerGameFest Kickoff Live on June 10! http://BeChaoticGreat.com." That BeChaoticGreat Website is currently counting down the minutes to the reveal while offering signups for newsletters and digital marketing. According to VGC, the source code to the site indicates this is for Wonderlands, the game revealed last week as starring Tiny Tina from the Borderlands series.

Guild of Dungeoneering Ultimate Edition Announced

Indie developer Gambrinous announces plans to revive Guild of Dungeoneering with the release of Guild of Dungeoneering Ultimate Edition later this year. This will be an updated edition of the card battling game that began as a game-jam entry and was first released in 2015. An announcement trailer highlights what's new, while showing the game is retaining its distinctive hand-drawn aesthetic. Here's more on the plan:
The award-winning indie card battler Guild of Dungeoneering is getting a major remaster this year. Revealed on Saturday at the Guerrilla Collective digital games festival, Guild of Dungeoneering Ultimate Edition brings new quests, monsters, classes, weapons and loot - plus all the original’s DLC - together in one supreme package.

Guild of Dungeoneering Ultimate Edition is the turn-based dungeon crawler with a twist - instead of controlling the hero, players build the dungeon around them. Using cards drawn from their guild decks players lay down rooms, monsters, traps and (of course) loot.

All of this is dressed in a hugely nostalgic ‘pen & paper’ art style, influenced by classic 1980s and 90s tabletop RPGs (plus games the devs made as kids!).
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Dream Engines: Nomad Cities Early Access Nears

Dream Engines: Nomad Cities is a city-building strategy game in the works at Suncrash where you will construct the most appealing of metropolises — the flying kind. This is right on the horizon, as it currently carries a Q2 2021 release window on Steam. Here's a new trailer showing off gameplay, and here's a blueprint:
In this video, you can see some of the unique features of the game in action. See the steambot Tiny venturing into the wilderness after the city lands in an unexplored region, fighting the Dream Plagues to find the resources the city will need. Tiny also lays down an industrial hub with several factories and an automated rail system to support the city’s growth and feed its increasing population.

In the next couple of weeks, additional videos will be released focusing on other aspects of the game – defending your city against the Dream Plagues and flying off when withstanding them is no longer possible. Dream Engines: Nomad Cities will announce its release date soon; stay tuned… and beware of the Dream Plagues!
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Source of Madness This Year

Thunderful Publishing and Carry Castle announce Source of Madness will come later this year to Steam, offering a side-scrolling action/roguelite filled with Lovecraftian horror. A new teaser trailer shows off gameplay, eerie procedurally generated environments, and promises "millions" of monsters. Here's more:
Source of Madness is a side-scrolling dark action roguelite set in a twisted Lovecraftian inspired world powered by procedural generation and AI machine learning. Take on the role of a new Acolyte as they embark on a nightmarish odyssey. Uncover the cosmic secrets of the Loam Lands and The Tower of Madness, the moon’s mysterious Citadel.

Fight hordes of nightmarish beasts utilising powerful close-combat magic, explore labyrinthine environments, collect powerful loot and manage your item loadout, then infuse the beasts’ blood at magical altars to unlock additional abilities, perks and spells. Decide your Acolyte’s fate in the customisable skill tree.

As your journey progresses, the arcane lore of the Loam Lands unfurls and plunges you deeper into its dark depths. The world and monsters are rendered using a combination of hand-drawn assets, AI visual manipulation and procedural generation. The monsters inhabiting this dark world are animated using a machine learning AI. This means Source of Madness offers ever-changing landscapes to explore and new monstrosities to face on every run.
Continue here to read the full story.

Elderand Next Year

Publisher Graffiti Games and Brazilian indie developer Mantra announce Elderand, a side-scrolling action/RPG coming to Steam and consoles next year. This is another Lovecraft-inspired project that's described as "a love letter to classic Metroidvania games that allow players to forge their own paths." Here's a Gameplay Trailer showing throwback graphics and skill-based combat. Here's more:
The game has a heavy focus on skill-based combat. Reckless explorers will be punished time after time. Do not be afraid, your timing and positioning will improve as you find your battle style.

Discover, buy, and conquer tons of items as you cross strange worlds. Unique relics, potions, weapons, shields, and some resources that are still untouched. Take good care of your income, shopkeepers have loads of material to bargain.

Slay filthy creatures, find hidden passages, and befriend strangers from the Errant Breach to Omulore. Your journey will be filled with an extensive amount of ancient mysteries. As you uncover your path, remember one thing, curiosity is your greatest ally.
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Dying Light Hellraid Content Update

Techland announces a new content update is now live on Steam for Hellraid, the DLC released last summer for Dying Light, the zombie-infested action/RPG for Windows, macOS, and Linux. This adds new content, a new story mode, new weapons, and more. To celebrate, Hellraid is currently on sale for 30% off and there's also a 66% discount on the base version of Dying Light. Much of what's new is shown off in the Prisoner Release Trailer and the Prisoner Cinematic Trailer. Surely you are dying for more details, so let's shed more light on what to expect:
Dust off your weapons and turn on the old arcade machine again, adventurer. Something’s happened inside Ba’al’s Temple and now you can feel two energies calling you from within. One seems familiar, you might’ve heard it before, answered it even. Yet still, it feels changed. But the other one, it’s new. Though mysterious and eerie, the more you listen to it, the more it attracts you. So much that you can’t help but peek at what’s behind the portal…

New challenges to face, new areas to discover, and an ally who needs your help—an ancient conflict reignites and you must prepare for an inevitable clash. But remember the mysteries of the Ba’al’s Temple are well-guarded, and the fate of the one person who could guide you to the truth depends on you. Should you succeed, however, you’ll earn a powerful bow, Corrupted Justice, which might tip the balance in the upcoming confrontation with the forces of evil.
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Immortal Life This Year

YiFang Studio and 2P Games announce Immortal Life, an agriculture simulation/RPG coming to Steam this year. The twist here is your crop is souls on the path to immortality. We hear tomatoes can be nice too. Here's a trailer and more:
Immortal Life immerses players in a magic world, inspired by Chinese Taoist fantasy where cultivation clans search for wisdom and balance to reach immortality. Fleeing the destruction of your old sect, you join a young community in a breathtakingly beautiful valley, where you are tasked with taking care of the crops. There are new brothers and sisters for you to meet, and sometimes they will need your help. The path to immortality rests in your heart as much as in your hands. Will you walk it in seclusion, or will you spend your years helping others until your time comes?
Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Multiplex

Out of the Blue

Well, here's hoping you're strapped in, as we're about to head into summer game trade show season. The Summer Game Fest 2021 gets underway on Wednesday (or is it Thursday?), E3 2021 begins on Saturday, the Future Games Show is Sunday, and the Steam Next Fest begins a week from Wednesday. So we are on the crest of a flood of game announcements, demos, media, and hype focused on the future of our hobby. My last in-person Electronic Entertainment Expo was back in 2000. But since there is no face-to-face show this year, my media credentials mean I'm an official attendee for the first time in over 20 years. Things might start getting hairy right away, as media access to E3 gets underway today. So depending on the embargo situation, a lot of next week's E3 news may all come out this week. We shall see. Have fun!

Obituary: R.I.P. Clarence Williams III.
Obituary: Last Of Soviet Soldiers Who Liberated Auschwitz Dies At 98.

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