Archived News:

Friday, Aug 27, 2021

American Truck Simulator Wyoming Next Month

The SCS Software Blog has a release date for the Wyoming expansion for American Truck Simulator, saying this chunk of the west will open up on September 7th. There's a new trailer to view right now, and there are plans for a livestream you can view on launch day. Here's word on both:
And if that announcement date hasn't gotten you excited enough, then we are sure that this video trailer showcasing the natural beauty and prominent industries of Wyoming will!

That is not all, however, as prior to Wyoming's release, we will be hosting a very special release live stream on Tuesday, September 7th, starting at around 16:00 CEST. This stream will feature a variety of special guests involved in the creation of this DLC along with the possibility of a few extra surprises too. You can watch along live on the day over at our official Twitch channel or YouTube channel, so don't miss out!
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Severed Steel Next Month

Severed Steel will come to PC and consoles on September 17th, announce publisher Digerati and developer Greylock Studio. This puts the one-armed bandit shooter well within the Q3 release window it carried when it was announced. The game will come to consoles at a later date, and the news includes the addition of PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and Switch to the list of target platforms. Here's the Official Release Date Trailer and more details, including word that the playable demo on Steam was recently updated:
Contrary to most shooters, weapons cannot be reloaded in Severed Steel – a consequence of Steel's residual limb. Instead, when a gun is out of ammo, Steel must find a replacement weapon, which often means stealing one straight from the hands of an enemy.

Players can try Severed Steel ahead of launch thanks to a Steam demo, which was recently updated with an additional campaign level, tweaked movement mechanics, and various changes based on player feedback following a closed beta.
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Gungrave G.O.R.E Next Year

Developer IGGYMOB and publisher Prime Matter announce Gungrave G.O.R.E will come to PC and consoles next year, continuing a shooter series that began way back in 2002. A Grave Returns Cinematic Teaser illustrates the news. Here's more on the game:
Gungrave G.O.R.E is a stylish, third-person action shooter by South Korean Studio IGGYMOB. Players take on the role of Grave, a gunslinger of resurrection and the badass anti-hero of your dreams, mowing down tons of enemies in a gory ballet of bullets.

As the official next chapter in the Gungrave series, Gungrave G.O.R.E is the ultimate resurrection of the Gungrave franchise for veteran gunslingers and Gungrave fans, but also a gloriously gory standalone story experience for a new generation of gamers, and on a new generation of consoles.

City Block Builder Early Access Next Month

Tentworks Interactive announces City Block Builder is coming to Steam Early Access on September 22nd, when it will give players the business in this management game. Here's a new Gamescom Trailer "showcasing how players can construct the movie theater of their dreams!" Here's more on this chance to C Block with the best of them:
City Block Builder is a mashup of deep tycoon management games with large-scale city building elements. Set in Los Angeles during the 1950s, the game puts you in the shoes of a young, budding entrepreneur who is determined to build their own business empire. Fresh off the victory of WWII, Los Angeles is the pop culture capital of the world. With the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, designer shops, and finest cuisine money can buy, all under a canopy of clear blue skies, the City of Angels represents the “American Dream” at its most ideal.

As the owner of several establishments, it’s up to you to make every decision, both large and small, about how your enterprise operates. Choose which tiles, wallpapers, and furniture to decorate with. Decide what movies your cinema plays and at what times. Set the menu for your restaurant. Hire and fire staff. Nobody said building an empire was going to be easy!
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Tandem: A Tale of Shadows in October

Developer Monochrome and Publisher Hatinh Interactive reveal October 21st is the release date for Tandem: A Tale of Shadows, the recently announced action/adventure platformer. The news comes with a new Gamescom Gameplay Trailer. Here's word on that: "Today’s trailer showcases the title’s dual protagonist gameplay and offers a new glimpse of the illusory dangers that await the pair as they attempt to solve the mystery surrounding Thomas Kane’s disappearance." Here's more:
In Tandem: A Tale of Shadows, players will alternate between Emma’s top-down view and Fenton’s horizontal side-scroller view, using the former’s lantern to cast shadows the teddy bear can cross. In turn, the latter can activate switches that may be out of view.

Each of the game’s chapters will introduce fans to new mechanics they must master if they hope to defeat the horrifying monstrosities that await them. As players sink into Tandem’s five strange worlds, they’ll stitch together answers surrounding the vanishment of the Kane family and shed light on the title’s dauntless heroes.
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Apple Proposes App Store Changes

Apple will change its App Store practices in legal settlement reports concessions proposed by Apple to settle a class action lawsuit. Among other things, this would allow developers to directly contact consumers (but not from within apps) to inform them of alternate payment options that circumvent Apple's commission. This seems like it might also relate to Epic's lawsuit against Apple over mobile platform fees, but our crack legal team has the day off, so we can't comment for sure. Here's an interesting twist: "The settlement will next be weighed by Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers of the U.S. District Court in Oakland, Calif., who also presided over and is deciding the Epic antitrust case. A decision in that case is expected soon." The New York Times (may require registration or subscription) calls the move on Apple's part shrewd: "Seen through the lens of Apple’s other legal troubles, the settlement could be strategically shrewd, easing the threat of more government action, and shifting Washington’s focus to other tech giants who have been less willing to make similar concessions." Here's more on what the proposed settlement would change:
Apple Inc. will change its App Store policies in a legal settlement, the first major concession the iPhone maker has made amid multiple antitrust investigations.

In a proposed settlement of a 2019 class-action lawsuit from developers, Apple AAPL agreed to allow app makers to direct their consumers to payment options outside the App Store, which could allow them to avoid paying fees of up to 30% that Apple charges developers for online purchases in iOS apps. The company also agreed to a democratic approach to the App Store’s search function, greater pricing freedom and an annual transparency report about the companies’ app-review policies and their effects.

Perhaps the biggest concession from Apple would let developers finally communicate directly with customers about alternative payment options, with their permission, using information collected inside their apps.

PC SKATE Confirmed

EA tweets that the return of the SKATE franchise announced last year will also be landing on PC. There's not much to this, just a skater doing a snazzy kickflip over a vintage VGA PC monitor sporting the SKATE logo. The accompanying text simply says: "PC_confirmation.exe."

No More No More Heroes

No More Heroes III is now available for Switch. The first two games in this hack-and-slash series eventually came to PC, so this one probably will as well. That's not certain, but what does seem certain is that No More Heroes IV will not, because a tweet from Grasshopper Manufacture (thanks Eurogamer) announces this marks the end of the series:
This game is called NO MORE HEROES 3 FINAL BOUT - All-Out Galactic War! Or, it was going to be called that, but the subtitle was just too long so we ended up taking a hint from the Rocky series and simply going with No More Heroes 3 instead.

As hinted at with the "Final" thing, Travis Touchdown will finally be coming to the end of his final battle, and will be embarking on a much deserved, long journey. Join him as he goes absolutely buck wild in the Garden — no, Cosmos of madness!
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Tormented Souls Released

Tormented Souls is now available on Steam, offering the Windows edition of this survival/horror sequel that's also now out on PlayStation 5 and coming to other consoles soon. The Launch Trailer sets the stage and gives a taste of the fixed-perspective gameplay inspired by Resident Evil and Silent Hill. If you want to check this out, the previously released demo provides a sample. Here's more:
Dropping into the secluded town of Winterlake, players investigate the disappearance of missing twin girls within the halls of an abandoned mansion-turned-hospital. Unspeakable horrors and mind-bending challenges await at every corner. Players must collect and combine resources, build weapons, and solve puzzles to unravel the mystery – and survive the night.
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Trepang2 Announced

Publisher Team17 announces Trepang2, a first-person shooter coming next year as an eponymous debut from indie developer Trepang Studios. Here's an action-packed Announcement Trailer with a look at gameplay. If you want to get in on this, there's a playable demo on Steam you can check out right now. Here are the details:
Team17 and Trepang Studios have announced fast-paced, supernatural first-person shooter, Trepang2. Currently in development for Steam for PC and scheduled for launch in 2022, Trepang2 follows an enhanced soldier newly broken out from a heavily-guarded blacksite on a mission of revenge… and hunted by an even greater threat. Found to have lost all memory of their past life, but imbued with superior combat abilities, strength, and stealth, Trepang2 unravels their story through a bullet-laden and bloodthirsty single-player campaign.
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Bum Simulator Released

Early Access to Bum Simulator is now available for Windows on Steam, allowing the chance to live the dream of an indigent life in the city of Bumsville. In case that description isn't clear, this is a throwback to a time when games exercised a little less delicacy about social issues. You can see some bumming around in action in the Launch Trailer which demonstrates this is not exactly steeped in realism. Here's more:
Bum Simulator is a sandbox game bursting with inappropriate humor and memorable characters.

You live on the streets of Bumsville. Do you have what it takes to adapt, survive and become an urban legend?

Apart from day-to-day survival, you can enjoy many unique activities:

  • Weaponize the pigeons
  • Learn the secrets of Alcohol Alchemy
  • Build your own cardboard house
  • Talk with your shopping cart friend
  • Solve the mystery of sewer rat people
  • ...and much more!

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Balsa Model Flight Simulator Beta

Open beta testing is now underway for Balsa Model Flight Simulator, a lightweight flight sim from Felipe “HarvesteR” Falanghe, lead developer of the original Kerbal Space Program. Signups for this began in the spring, but you can still request access on Steam. Here's a new gameplay trailer, and here's more on this chance to soar with the pigeons or crash and not burn:
Focusing on true independent development, the Floating Origin team - comprising just three developers - designed Balsa to be unique in the flight sim category with its detailed, powerful editor where players can design, build, fly and battle their own model aircraft.

Powered by a sophisticated physics simulation and built from the ground up for Multiplayer, Balsa takes the next step in player-built flight simulation games, delivering an entirely new, multi-genre experience for virtual pilots of all skill levels.
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Townscaper Released

Townscaper is out of Early Access, and is now officially available for Windows and macOS on the Epic Games Store, GOG.com, and Steam, as well as for Switch (mobile editions are in the works). As seen in the title, this is a town-building game, perfect for those interested in a city-builder with less commitment. Here's the Launch Trailer, and here's word on how this is more of a toy than a game:
The appeal of Townscaper is as simple as the game itself – just build something beautiful! There’s no story, nothing to unlock, no levels to chase – just the soothing sound of plopping down colorful building blocks and the satisfaction of watching them effortlessly link together to create an ocean-side town. It’s this tranquil straightforwardness that has captured the attention of tons of gamers looking to unwind, as well as those brimming with creativity that simply want a sandbox to play in.

Townscaper is the brainchild of Oskar Stålberg, coming off the success of his earlier work on the Viking-inspired RTS Bad North. Originally released on PC in early access, Oskar has teamed up yet again with publisher Raw Fury to fully launch Townscaper on even more platforms.
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On Sale

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Op Ed

  • GamesIndustry.biz The industry should follow EA in using patents to defend accessibility - Opinion.
    "It should go without saying that no matter what your stance is on software patent issues more broadly, techniques for making games accessible for disabled players -- whether they're related to control layouts and options, colour and sound adaptations, or features to add in-game cues and functions -- should never be locked up behind a patent barrier.

    One of the major criticisms of the existing patent regime is that it creates a chilling effect; patents and their enforceability are often unclear, and companies often choose to avoid using a certain technique even if the patent which describes it is likely invalid simply because they don't want to get embroiled in a legal fight over the issue."

Out of the Blue

So I got this prescription yesterday for a course of steroids to try and address persistent swelling in my left hand (I'm just talking around things I'm not allowed to discuss yet). I try very hard to be a good patient and follow doctor's orders whenever possible. So I read the packaging, which calls for taking six of the 21 pills the first day, five the second day, four the third, and so forth. There are specific instructions for each day explaining how to spread them out among meals. They make it sound very important that this regimen be followed, so I decided to start in on these this morning. Then I got to the weird part. Below all that detailed scheduling is the following note: "Unless otherwise instructed by your physician, all six (6) tablets in the row labeled 1st day should be taken on the day you receive your prescription even though you may not receive it until late in the day." You know, I'm trusting you here. It would be easier if you acted like the things you say are important are important.

Obituary: Dota 2 Filipino caster Dunoo, half of duo behind 'Lakad matatag' voice line, dies.

Prescribed Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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