Archived News:

Wednesday, Nov 23, 2022

HELLCARD Announced

HELLCARD is a co-op roguelike deckbuilder in development at Thing Trunk for release next year on Steam. This shares a setting with Book of Demons, and will be published by Bill Wang and David Brevik's Skystone Games. Here's a Teaser Trailer with a gander at what to expect. Here's the deal:
What makes HELLCARD unique and different from other card games? In the battles, monster placement actually matters and can be used to your advantage if you’re up to the strategic challenge. Your team of heroes has its own strengths and weaknesses, each with an ever-growing deck of abilities and equipment to use on the battlefield. It will take the hardiest of champions to withstand the evil hordes and defeat the Archdemon.

HELLCARD supports co-op battles with up to three heroes facing Archdemon’s hordes. In single-player mode, you can descend into the dungeons solo or recruit computer-controlled companions. In multiplayer mode, your friends or strangers can help you battle the hordes of hell.
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American Truck Simulator Oklahoma Details

A new post on SCS Software's blog follows up on the recent reveal of the Oklahoma expansion for American Truck Simulator. This officially introduces the add-on and serves up over a dozen screenshots showing the flat brown vistas of the Sooner State. Here's word:
Dear #BestCommunityEver, you may have caught a glimpse of the following announcement at this year’s edition of Czech & Slovak Games Week, but now it is time to make it official. So, without further ado, let us show you the next step in the journey across the US states...

While Oklahoma tends to have an unfortunate reputation of being a rather arid place, sometimes it’s much better to avoid judging a book by its cover. The state is home to wonderful national parks, several natural marvels, and historical places full of mysteries and legends. And if you are looking for something more practical instead, the local road network and a strong economy will keep every trucker properly busy.

On Sale

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Into the Black

Last Link of the Day: Elon Musk Is An Idiot (and so are Zuck and SBF) (NSFW video). Thanks Matthew.

Obituary: Wilko Johnson dead: Game of Thrones actor and Dr Feelgood star dies aged 75. Thanks Console General.

Get Narita Boy for Free in GOG.COM Black Friday Sale

Black Friday is still a couple of days off, but GOG.com has gotten a jump on the festivities, and its Black Friday Sale* is underway as of today. This week-long sale offers over 4000 deals with discounts up to 90% off. But it's no surprise there's a 100% discount or two to be had, as that's the GOG way. Everyone is now entitled to claim a free copy of Narita Boy, Studio Koba's 2021 throwback action/platformer. This is yours to keep if you claim it by Friday, and at that point the sale will feature another giveaway, which will be Terroir. We're not sure the second freebie is intended as public knowledge, but it would be a shame for anyone to pay for it in the meantime. Here's more on the sale:
A grand sale like Black Friday requires a grand release – Europa Universalis IV (-80%) with all its DLCs (-50%) is now live on GOG, entirely DRM-free. Rule your land, build an empire and dominate the world in this classic grand strategy game from Paradox Interactive.

Now for the main dish, thousands of huge deals are waiting for you, including some of the all-time bestsellers, so make sure you check them out. Here’s a short list showing what you can expect:

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Netflix Plans AAA PC Game

A Job Listing for a Game Director, Games Studio on the Netflix Website reveals that Netflix is gearing up to develop a AAA PC game (thanks Mobilegamer via VGC). Up until now, the streaming giant's announced gaming aspirations were all in the mobile realm. The new listing shows this is about to change. It's a little vague, but there's an indication this will be a first- and/or third-person shooter. Here's are some more tea leaves to help us try and predict what will happen:
The Ideal Candidate

  • At least 10 years of game design experience, including experience as a Creative Director, Game Director, or comparable design leadership role
  • Shipped content that is directly the result of the candidate's work that can be reviewed - level designs, gameplay mechanics, metagame features, etc.
  • Can balance innovation with what is tried and true to develop a game that can appeal to 10’s or 100’s of millions of players around the world
  • Extensive experience working on live service games; Deep understanding of highly engaging content and how to deliver it
  • Deeply passionate about social systems and gameplay - both cooperative and competitive
  • Proven track record of delivering clear and consistent creative feedback that elevates other team members’ work
  • Thrives as a member of a cross-functional multidisciplinary team
  • Communicates with authenticity, intention, and curiosity
  • Proven track record of empowering their lieutenants to make decisions and implement initiatives with limited oversight
  • Gets excited by learning new skills, dashing to pitch in, even if this means flexing beyond this role’s core responsibilities if it can help us win
  • Experience with FPS and/or Third Person Shooter games is preferred

Golden Joystick Winners

GamesRadar+ offers a video replay of last night's Golden Joystick Awards, along with a rundown of all the winners. If this affirmation tempts you to get any or all of the winners, there's a Steam Listing with links to buy them, including a few discounts. FromSoftware is Studio of the year, and Elden Ring won four awards, including the "Ultimate Game of the Year" award, so it seems safe to deem it the big winner of the show. Here are all the honorees:
GOLDEN JOYSTICK AWARD WINNERS 2022

  • Best Storytelling - Horizon Forbidden West
  • Still Playing Award - Genshin Impact
  • Best Visual Design - Elden Ring
  • Studio of the Year - FromSoftware
  • Best Game Expansion - Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course
  • Best Early Access Launch - Slime Rancher 2
  • Best Indie Game - Cult of the Lamb
  • Best Multiplayer Game - Elden Ring
  • Best Audio - Metal: Hellsinger
  • Best Game Trailer - Goat Simulator 3 Announcement Trailer
  • Best Game Community - Final Fantasy 14
  • Best Gaming Hardware - Steam Deck
  • Breakthrough Award - Vampire Survivors
  • Critics' Choice Award - Elden Ring
  • Best Performer - Manon Gage (Marissa Marcel, Immortality)
  • Nintendo Game of the Year - Pokemon Legends Arceus
  • PC Game of the Year - Return to Monkey Island
  • PlayStation Game of the Year - Stray
  • Xbox Game of the Year - Grounded
  • Most Wanted Game - Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
  • Ultimate Game of the Year - Elden Ring

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Morning Crowdfunding

Tuesday, Nov 22, 2022

Colossal Cave Coming to Steam and Epic Games Store

Cygnus Entertainment, formed by Sierra On-Line founders Ken and Roberta Williams, announce that Colossal Cave will come to the Epic Games Store and Steam when it's released later this year. This is a remake of 2019 World Video Game Hall of Fame inductee Colossal Cave Adventure, a text adventure designed by William Crowther for mainframe computers in 1976. If you're curious, this is playable online here. This is now being reimagined in 3D by GDCA pioneer Roberta Williams. Here's a Colossal Cave Steam Announcement Trailer, and here's more:
Colossal Cave Reimagined by Roberta Williams, is an exciting new action-adventure game from the founders of Sierra On-Line, Ken and Roberta Williams. Roberta Williams, the acclaimed creator of the King’s Quest series, Phantasmagoria, and numerous other critically lauded adventure games returns to the fold of game creation, paying homage to the original text-based computer adventure game that inspired her to begin her own career as a game designer, Colossal Cave Adventure by Will Crowther and Don Woods.

Immerse yourself in the world of Colossal Cave, explore its vast caverns and vistas, seek the diverse treasures within, and encounter both friends and foes in your quest to explore this mysterious and wonderful locale.
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Bullet Runner Prologue

Steam is now offering access to the Bullet Runner Prologue, a sample of Bullet Runner, a run and gun action/adventure that's coming next year. You can get in on the prologue by availing yourself of the requesting access button. This post has the Official Trailer showing off your rage-induced rampage, described as "what Doom Eternal would be if Bethesda would be into Twin Stick Shooters." Here's more:
Bullet Runner is like pure adrenaline poured into your brain and veins, just like the good ol’ days with Doom and Quake. You are Jack, and for some reason everyone wants you dead. Buller Runner is a top-down shooter where you run your way through the enemy-filled facility shooting, blasting, and raging through any obstacle set in your way.

“My love for DOOM Eternal is very strong, and I wanted to create my own kind of homage to the Doom series. Fighting and especially the glory kill mechanisms will be familiar for all like minded players, but in Bullet Runner the main character is just a regular badass-Jack'' tells Laura Moon, the developer behind the game.
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Steam Autumn Sale and Steam Awards Nominations Begin

The annual Autumn Sale is now underway on Steam, offering discounts on thousands of games for the next week. It also kicks off the run-up to The Steam Awards. Everyone is invited to nominate their personal choices for these honors on this page. After these are sorted out there will be a chance to vote on the actual awards during the Winter Sale slated to begin on December 22nd. The plan is to unveil the winners on January 3rd. This page includes a Steam Awards 2022 Nominations How-To! Video and the following:
This is also the time to nominate your favorite games from the past year for the Steam Awards! We have 11 different categories this year, including a brand new category for games you love playing on portable devices:

  • Best Game on the Go
  • Game of the Year
  • VR Game of the Year
  • Labor of Love
  • Better with Friends
  • Most Innovative Gameplay
  • Outstanding Story-Rich Game
  • Best Game You Suck At (no offense)
  • Outstanding Visual Style
  • Best Soundtrack
  • Sit Back and Relax

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Gungrave G.O.R.E Released

Developer Iggymob and publisher Prime Matter wish a "Happy Resurrection Day" in announcing the release of Gungrave G.O.R.E for PC and consoles. You can now find the Windows edition on Steam. With no apologies to Duke Nukem, this promises the chance to play as "the gun-wielding badass anti-hero of your dreams" The Launch Trailer takes a look at what to expect from this third-person shooter that's aimed at "combining the best that Eastern and Western game design have to offer." Here's more:
In Gungrave G.O.R.E, play the gun-wielding badass anti-hero of your dreams as you mow down tons of enemies in a gory ballet of bullets and experience a story of vengeance, love and loyalty, all in a beautiful third-person action shooter, combining the best that Eastern and Western game design have to offer.

G.O.R.E
As the titular Gunslinger of Resurrection, you become the badass anti-hero of your dreams, an ultimate killing machine, brutalising your foes without mercy. Taking cover and retreating is not an option for Grave, he only ever goes full steam ahead, preferably right through his enemies.
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Prison Architect: Future Tech Pack Released

Paradox Interactive now offers the Future Tech Pack as new DLC for Prison Architect, the incarceration simulation. This can be found on the Epic Games Store, GOG.com*, and Steam, depending on where you bought the base game, which is required. Speaking of the base game, the DLC comes along with a free update for all owners called The Slam, and this forum post has the details. As the title of the DLC suggests, it adds modern tools to help manage your prison population. Here's the Reveal Trailer with a look, and here's more:
Future Tech Pack gives players an upgrade to the tools used to build and manage their compounds. With controllable searchlights, keycard-activated doors, and even two robot dogs, Subwoofer and Byte, more is at players’ disposal than ever to keep compounds secure. Inmates' and guards’ uniforms even receive a futuristic design update. To put this heightened security to the test, players can take the perspective of an inmate in Escape Mode in an attempt to escape the compounds they have created.
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Sea of Thieves Season 8 Launches Faction War

Rare announces that Season Eight is now underway in Sea of Thieves, the swashbuckling action/adventure for Windows and Xbox. In addition to the rewards of a new battle pass, this implements a PvP faction war where players will choose to be part of the Horde or the Alliance Guardians of Fortune or the Servants of the Flame. The Official Content Update Video illustrates the news. Here's more:
Caught between the opposing ideologies of the Pirate Lord and Captain Flameheart, the Sea of Thieves has descended into open warfare. Using the new Hourglass of Fate on their ships, all pirate crews who wish to join the fray can vote on a Faction to side with: the Guardians of Fortune, backed by the likes of the Pirate Lord and Belle, or the Servants of the Flame, fuelled by the hunger of the Reapers and their loyalty to Flameheart.

Once you’ve chosen your Faction, the goal is simple: sink as many enemy ships from the opposing Faction as you can. Unfurl the War Map, dive beneath the waves and enter head-to-head showdowns with crews of similar ability to your own. Fight and win, and you’ll earn Allegiance and unlock Faction rewards!

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HAWKED Announced; Closed Alpha This Week

Upwake.me announces HAWKED, a PvPvE extraction shooter coming to PC and consoles. The Windows edition is listed on Steam as "coming soon." In the meantime, a Closed Alpha test is scheduled to begin for PC users on Thursday, so those interested should head over and hit the "Request Access" button. Testing will introduce the game's Hunt mode, which can be played solo or in squads of three. Here's the Announcement Trailer, showing off an Indiana Jones flair that suits this battle between greedy pseudo-archaeologists. Here's more:
HAWKED is an online shooter in which teams or solo players race to collect and extract treasure from a remote island. Players must explore this mysterious island, compete with each other, and battle greedy saurian so called Disciples in an all-out heist for treasure and mystical artifacts. But it’s not just the monsters they’ll have to worry about, other players are gunning for their treasure too. Players will also have to contend with puzzles and traps, hazardous environments, and a variety of other challenges along the way.
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Swordship Next Month; Playable Demo Now

Publisher Thunderful and developer Digital Kingdom offer a new Developer Commentary Video for Swordship, a "futuristic lightning-fast dodge’em up" coming to PC, PlayStation, and Switch on December 6th and the following day on Xbox. But PC players can check this out sooner, as there's a playable demo on Steam. The launguage in this video from the Swedish developer sounds like French, but it features English subtitles explaining what to expect from this action-packed roguelike. Here's word:
In the video, Swordship Game Designer, Sandro, and Lead Artist, Ben, from Digital Kingdom discuss what players can expect from the thrilling chase adventure. They discuss how, from the beginning of the project, Digital Kingdom wanted to explore the fast-paced chase characteristics of action franchises such as Fast & Furious and James Bond. The key element in Swordship is that there are no offensive weapons. Players must use their streamlined abilities, tactics and elements around them to zig-zag, dodge and weave in and out of explosions, turning enemies’ attacks against them, and causing collisions at the last second.

In terms of game design, Digital Kingdom decided to work with a reversed camera angle which allows players to feel the chase and always be in the action. The roguelike structure of Swordship allows many elements to interact with each other, giving a fresh aspect of discovering new things on each new run.
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Aurora's Journey and the Pitiful Lackey Announced

Sony Interactive Entertainment España and the Not so Great team announce Aurora's Journey and the Pitiful Lackey, a run-and-gun platformer coming next year to Steam and PlayStation. Here's a trailer with a look at how this plays. The game is set after the turn of the 20th century when it turns out what was assumed to be a natural phenomenon turns out to be anything but:
What if an ancient comet that crashed into Earth was actually an alien ship torn into pieces? That's what actually happened in 1908 (at least in Aurora's Journey's universe) and that event let to the discovery of the robotos: peaceful, robotic and clunky beings. One of them, Lackey, is one Aurora's oldest companions, and soon will join her in a quest to find her missing father when she receives his journey via mail.

William was one of the scientists behind the discovery of that comet that turned out to be an ancient ship and disappeared four years ago after embarking on an expedition to closely research the remains of the alien ship. Why is his diary appearing now? Is he alive? Who has sent it, if not Aurora's father?
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Out of the Blue

Thank you for the well-wishing for my birthday. As I mentioned, we laid low for the occasion. But there's been some talk of possibly going out to dinner at some point to mark celebrate. I say possibly, as this is something we haven't done since Early 2020, so we're out of practice. This talk may lead nowhere, but it's an interesting development that it's even a topic of discussion.

Topical Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

Breakfast Link

Stories

Science

Media

Creature Features
Thanks Kxmode.

Follow-up

The Funnies

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