Archived News:

Tuesday, Nov 23, 2021

Men of War II Announced

1C Entertainment and Best Way announce Men of War II, a World War II RTS sequel coming to Steam in 2022. The Official Reveal Trailer provides a first look. The announcement says this brings the series back to its "roots," though it doesn't go so far as to revert to the Soldiers: Heroes of World War II nomenclature. Word is:
After spawning multiple expansions and spin-offs since Men Of War’s debut, Men Of War II returns to the series’ roots to rebuild and redefine real-time strategy gameplay. The new Front Line mechanic is the bedrock of exciting dynamic encounters, where the push-and-pull of each skirmish directly affects territory borders. Manage attritional battles and break through undefended lines to advance the areas of maps under control, digging trenches and supporting troops in newly won territory.

Assume greater command of the battlefield with the enhanced Direct Vision feature to focus solely on one unit at any time and upgrade, change, or repair equipment on the fly. Level the theater of war with powerful armor and artillery capable of destroying buildings and weapon emplacements, while choosing from an arsenal including 45 battalions and more than 300 vehicles, all painstakingly designed with complete historical accuracy.
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Epic Acquires Harmonix

Epic Games announces the acquisition of Harmonix. Word is the Boston-based developer will create "musical journeys" for Fortnite while continuing to support its other audio-oriented projects like Rock Band 4 and Fuser. The studio's perspective can be found in an update on the Harmonix Blog. Here's word:
Today we are delighted to welcome Harmonix to Epic Games. Harmonix is one of the world's leading independent game development studios, best known for creating the Rock Band and Dance Central franchises.

Harmonix has a track record of creating fun and engaging music experiences designed for everyone to enjoy. As we work to build the metaverse, this expertise is needed to reimagine how music is experienced, created and distributed.

The Harmonix team will collaborate closely with Epic to develop musical journeys and gameplay for Fortnite while continuing to support existing titles including Rock Band 4. Check out this post on Harmonix's blog for more details.

Hearts of Iron IV No Step Back Released

Hearts of Iron IV takes a step forward with today's release of No Step Back, a new expansion that takes the World War II strategy game into the Eastern Front. This is available everywhere the original game is sold. Speaking of which: "Hearts of Iron IV: No Step Back is accompanied by a major free update for all Hearts of Iron IV players, including new supply and logistics systems as well as many quality of life changes." Put on an extra pair of socks and check out the chilly Release Trailer. Here's word:
The centrepiece of the expansion is the massive National Focus tree for the Soviet Union, offering a wide range of new options, from reinstalling the Romanovs to embracing a more open democratic regime, as well as the option to keep the strong hand of the Communist Party in control of a nation fighting for its life.
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Crusader Kings III Crusader Kings III in February

Paradox Interactive announces the Royal Court expansion will start to court Crusader Kings III players on February 8, 2022. This will expand the role-playing strategy game and will come with a new patch for the base game with additional free content for all players. A Feature Breakdown Trailer takes a look at some of the new features that are described below:
Royal Court is the first major expansion for Crusader Kings III, the award-winning grand strategy role-playing game set in the Middle Ages. Starting on February 8, 2022, armchair rulers and aspiring emperors will be able to accumulate artifacts and build new kinds of nations in one of strategy gaming’s deepest blends of politics, intrigue, and rich character-driven stories.
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etc., etc.

Into the Black

Last Link of the Day: The Prologue - Jurassic World Dominion.

Activision Blizzard Adding Oversight

This press release from Activision Blizzard is the latest damage control from the company as it remains embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal that's reached all the way to the top. The latest attempt to solve this problem by upper management additions rather than subtractions is to appoint a couple of independent directors, a new "diverse director" to the board, and form a Workplace Responsibility Committee. The announcement notes that "it is clear that current circumstances demand increased Board engagement" before saying "the Board is confident in the actions underway to set the Company up for future success." Here's the plan:
The Activision Blizzard (Nasdaq: ATVI) Board of Directors today announced that it has formed a “Workplace Responsibility Committee” (the “Committee”), initially comprised of two independent directors, to oversee the Company’s progress in successfully implementing its new policies, procedures, and commitments to improve workplace culture and eliminate all forms of harassment and discrimination at the Company. The Committee is being chaired by Dawn Ostroff, an independent director since 2020. Reveta Bowers, an independent director since 2018, will serve on the Committee. In addition, the Company is working to add a new, diverse director to the Board.

The Committee will require management to develop key performance indicators and/or other means to measure progress and ensure accountability. The Chief Executive Officer, Bobby Kotick, along with the Chief People Officer and Chief Compliance Officer will provide frequent progress reports to the Committee, which will regularly brief the full Board. The Committee is empowered to retain outside consultants or advisers, including independent legal counsel, to assist in its work.
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tinyBuild Acquires Versus Evil and Red Cerberus

Publisher tinyBuild announces two acquisitions, as it has purchased US-based publisher Versus Evil as well as Red Cerberus, a QA and testing studio based in Brazil. This is not the type of news that generally includes video, but here's one where tinyBuild CEO Alex Nichiporchik chats with Steve Escalante, founder of Versus Evil and Red Cerberus. Here's the deal on the deal:
Versus Evil and Red Cerberus join with the Seattle-based publisher tinyBuild. A respected publisher among developers, Versus Evil have put their name to some of the most striking and critically acclaimed games in recent years, partnering with studios such as Stoic (The Banner Saga trilogy) and Obsidian (Pillars Of Eternity 2) to publish their titles across multiple platforms.

Red Cerberus is Versus Evil’s internal testing and QA studio created in cooperation with the Firehorse team. Located in Sao Paulo, Red Cerberus will provide tinyBuild and its first-party studios with dev and QA support, as well as open up the Latin America market and talent to the publisher.
Continue here to read the full story.

New TEKKEN 7 Editions

BANDAI NAMCO announces that TEKKEN 7 has now sold more than eight million copies worldwide. The natural reaction is to keep releasing more TEKKEN 7. There's now a new TEKKEN 7: Originals Edition and a new TEKKEN 7: Definitive Edition. Here's a New Editions Trailer and what's different about each:
TEKKEN 7: Originals Edition
The Originals Edition includes the full game with the 12 TEKKEN series original character packs, as well as the new frame data feature.
The 12 Additional Characters: Bonus DLC: Eliza, Anna Williams, Lei Wulong, Craig Marduk, Armor King, Julia Chang, Zafina, Ganryu, Leroy Smith, Fahkumram, Kunimitsu, Lidia Sobieska.

TEKKEN 7: Definitive Edition
THE Tekken Edition to get and enjoy the ultimate fighting experience with ALL characters, stages and features included from all season passes!
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Manafinder Demo

Manafinder is a turn-based RPG for Windows from solo developer Wolfsden that's expected next year for Windows. This is not a JRPG, though it's described as "Japanese-styled." You can get a sense of this and the game's throwback sensibilities in this previously released gameplay trailer. If you're interested, there's a playable demo on Steam. Here's more:
In a world vastly untapped by mankind, powerful beasts roam the land. A community of survivors, the exiles, depend on the power of manastones to keep their settlement safe. Manafinders like Lambda risk their lives seeking said stones in the wild. Against external threats and internal conflicts, the mission starts becoming increasingly complicated. Can Lambda achieve a miracle?
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etc.

Out of the Blue

Wow! The Matrix Resurrections is actually almost upon us. I know there are mixed feelings about the remainder of the trilogy living up to the first movie, but I'm still very into seeing where things go from here (maybe there IS a spoon!). So it was another pleasant surprise when I saw that this will be a day one release on HBO Max. The Matrix is infinitely rewatchable, but it's been a good while since I've seen it. So now I can make a project out of re-experiencing the trilogy in advance of the sequel.

Obituary: 5-time MLB All-Star reliever Doug Jones dies at 64. Thanks RedEye9.

Red Pill Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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