Archived News:

Thursday, Jun 08, 2023 World Oceans Day

John Carpenter's Toxic Commando Announced

Developer Saber Interactive and publisher Focus Entertainment announce John Carpenter's Toxic Commando, a first-person shooter that captures the famed B movie director's offbeat sensibilities. It will come to PC via the Epic Games Store and to consoles next year. This page is accepting signups from those interested in closed beta testing. Here's a Reveal Trailer and the first details:
In the near future, an experimental attempt to harness the power of the Earth’s core ends in a terrifying disaster: the release of the Sludge God. This eldritch abomination begins terraforming the area, turning soil to scum and the living to undead monsters. Luckily, the genius behind the experiment has a plan to make things right. All he needs is a team of competent, highly trained mercenaries to get the job done.

Unfortunately, they were all too expensive. Which is why he’s hired… the Toxic Commandos!
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Star Trek: Infinite Announced

Paradox Interactive announces Star Trek: Infinite, a grand strategy game in the beloved sci-fi universe. This will arrive this (northern) fall with support for Windows and macOS. It's set between The Original Series and The Next Generation, putting us in command of one of the four major players in the galaxy (UFP, Romulan, Cardassian, or Klingon). Check out the Teaser Trailer and read on for more:
Star Trek: Infinite puts players in command of one of four major powers in the galaxy, each with individualized traits, stories, quests, and more to make their play feel distinct. With stunning visuals, difficult choices, and unique gameplay, this game allows players to experience a beloved franchise in a new way as they navigate contact with other empires and worlds.
Continue here to read the full story.

Under The Waves in August

Here's a Steam Listing for Under The Waves, a new adventure set under the sea from publisher Quantic Dream and developer Parallel Studio. It appeared at the Summer Game Fest through this trailer, which includes an August 29th release date. Honoring World Oceans Day, the description calls this a "love letter to the oceans":
Under The Waves is a narrative-driven adventure game about the engulfing power of grief. Set in the depths of the North Sea in a techno-futuristic 1970s, professional diver Stan is struggling to overcome a life-changing loss and embrace a new future. The isolation of the deep sea is a fitting manifestation of his state of mind, and as Stan retreads further into his self-imposed solitude, he starts to experience strange events far beneath the waves. He will eventually have to make a difficult choice...

A love letter to the oceans, Under The Waves invites you to dive into a gorgeous underwater world, brought to life in a poetic blend of cinematic visuals and poignant storytelling. Live a gripping story through Stan’s eyes and guide him through an unforeseen series of events that will bring him deeper and deeper into the abyss, the reflection of his own psyche.
Continue here to read the full story.

Remnant II Next Month

Gearbox Publishing and Gunfire Games announce a July 25th PC and console release date for REMNANT II, the third-person survival/shooter sequel. There is a chance to start earlier, though, as the Ultimate Edition grants three days of Early Access. Priced at $20 more than the base game, it also comes with cosmetics, consumables, and a season pass for three DLC packs promised within a year of the launch. Here's a new Co-Op Gameplay Trailer and more details:
Gearbox Publishing and Gunfire Games have announced today that REMNANT II, their upcoming third-person action-survival shooter, will be available on July 25th, 2023 for the PC, PlayStation® 5, and Xbox Series X|S. REMNANT II pits players against overwhelming odds alone or cooperatively with two friends as they scour dynamically built worlds with branching quest lines, unique loot, and terrifying enemies. Fans who digitally purchase the REMNANT II Ultimate Edition will also receive early access to REMNANT II on July 21st, 2023 three days before its official launch date. In addition, if players pre-order any digital edition, they will also get early access to the Gunslinger Archetype Class.

Starting today, fans will be able to choose from three options when digitally pre-ordering REMNANT II from PlayStation® Network, Xbox Network, Steam or Epic Games Store.

Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2 Co-op Details

A new trailer from Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2 unveils the co-op campaign in the upcoming third-person action sequel. It comes along with word the game will launch this (northern) winter for PC and consoles. Here's a bit more on how you can play this with friends:
As showcased in the co-op campaign reveal trailer, Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine 2 features a gripping narrative that follows fan-favorite Lieutenant Titus—powerfully portrayed by actor Clive Standen. Embody the superhuman skill and brutality of the Emperor's greatest warriors by unleashing deadly abilities and an arsenal of devastating weaponry on the relentless Tyranid hordes, solo or cooperatively with friends or AI in three-player co-op.
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Stellaris Nexus Announced

Paradox Interactive announces Stellaris Nexus, a sci-fi 4X strategy game using the Stellaris setting. Calling this a social strategy game, Paradox says the design will allow games to wrap up in under an hour when it launches this (northern) fall. Here's the Announcement Trailer, the Steam Listing, and a synopsis:
In the aftermath of the fall of the ruling Tzynn Empire, the seat of all galactic power known as NEXUS is left empty. Each turn, players influence the galaxy through Edicts with the goal of having their empire’s ruler ascend the throne. Players can take control of planets using military might or peaceful diplomatic annexation, constructing buildings to provide resources for their continued expansion.

Stellaris Nexus is packed with the strategic decision-making and grand space battles iconic to the franchise. Exploration, construction, diplomacy, espionage, trade, research and cultural influence are all at players’ fingertips as they compete with their friends for galactic domination. Players can group up with up to five of their friends or use skill-based matchmaking online to form alliances, wage wars, double cross, and compete for the galactic throne.
Continue here to read the full story.

SAND LAND Announced

Bandai Namco announces SAND LAND, a new action/RPG based on the manga of the same name by Akira Toriyama, creator of DRAGON BALL and DR. SLUMP. Here's a Game Announcement Trailer with a look. Here's more:
Dive into a desert world where both humans and demons suffer from an extreme water shortage. Play as and watch the Fiend Prince, Beelzebub, Sheriff Rao, and demon Thief set off on an adventure in search of a Legendary Spring hidden in the desert. Introducing himself as a “super evil fiend”, Beelzebub has a pure heart like a little boy but has superhuman strength and telepathic abilities. Rao, a small-town sheriff, seeks the aid of demons to save all of Sand Land from the water shortage. Thief, a wise old demon with thieving abilities also accompanies Beelzebub and Rao on their adventure.

Playing as Beelzebub, players will be able to explore a vast world accompanied by his unlikely group of demons and humans. Whether roaming in various vehicles, or traveling by foot, players will encounter dangers as well as helpful characters they meet in the vast desert while uncovering SAND LAND’s many secrets. Vehicular and character combat is a big part of the action in the game. Players will have access to a variety of vehicles that they can customize and equip with loadouts to traverse the desert, overcome obstacles, and take on a diverse assortment of mighty foes.
Continue here to read the full story.

Sonic Superstars Announced

SEGA announces plans to roll out a new Sonic game titled Sonic Superstars this (northern) fall for PC and consoles. Here's an Announce Trailer with a first look. Channel your inner Mary Katherine Gallagher and read on:
Calling all superstars – it’s time to jump into a brand-new Sonic gaming experience! Today, SEGA revealed Sonic Superstars, Sonic the Hedgehog’s latest adventure bringing a new standard of play to classic high-speed 2D Sonic platforming.

Sonic and his friends’ journey starts on the beautiful North Star Islands, a mystical place offering never-before-seen environments, as well as a mysterious story waiting to unfold. Enormous creatures, exhilarating adventures, and evil plans from Dr. Eggman await Sonic and his friends, who can now obtain brand-new abilities known as the Emerald Powers when Chaos Emeralds are collected.
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Lysfangha: The Time Shift Warrior Announced

This trailer introduces Lysfangha: The Time Shift Warrior, which will allow PC gamers to manipulate the sands of time when it arrives later this year on the Epic Games Store and Steam. Publisher Quantic Dream offers the following explanation of the project's origins:
Winner of the 2020 Grand Jury Prize at ISART Digital and Best Student Video Game at the 2021 Pégases Awards, Lysfanga: The Time Shift Warrior lets players rewind time to fight alongside an army of clones of their past actions.
The first creation from Sand Door Studio, Lysfanga: The Time Shift Warrior is a single player hack'n'slash game with a tactical twist in development for PC, in which the player takes on the role of Imë, a powerful warrior who must save the New Kingdom.

"The game was born as a student project. One of our first challenges was to develop it into a complete and innovative experience, first through the creation of our studio, Sand Door, and then through our publishing partnership with Spotlight by Quantic Dream," explains Studio Director Matthieu Schneider. "We're proud to have grown the studio and the ambition of the project. The collaboration with Spotlight by Quantic Dream has brought a lot of added value to Lysfanga: The Time Shift Warrior, through various creative exchanges and support throughout the production process. This collaboration is a real asset for the game, and we can't wait for gamers around the world to discover the New Kingdom!"
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Harmony: The Fall of Reverie Rises

Harmony: The Fall of Reverie is out for Windows via Steam and for Switch, offering a narrative adventure from DONT NOD. This had a recent playable demo, but that's no longer available for some reason. But we do have a Launch Trailer with a look at what to expect. Here's word:
In Harmony: The Fall of Reverie, players will step into the shoes of Polly, a young woman returning home to look for her missing mother. On her journey, Polly discovers she has the gift of clairvoyance that connects her to another world, Reverie, where she becomes Harmony. Players must attempt to restore balance between our world and Reverie, the realm of the divine beings known as Aspirations: Glory, Bliss, Power, Chaos, Bond, and Truth.
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Friday the 13th: The Game Ending

A tweet from Fear the Gun announces its Friday the 13th game will leave stores after December 31st. This is not bad luck, just the expiration of the game's license. It has slashed prices for the game and its content. It sounds like it will still be playable after its delisting, but that's not clear:
The time has come. Our license for Friday the 13th will expire on December 31st, 2023. On that date, Friday the 13th: The Game will no longer be available for sale, both physically and digitally.

The game will, however, continue to function through at least December 31, 2024, if you already own it. At this time, we've made the decision to reduce the price to $4.99 for the base game and $0.99 for each piece of DLC content. We will continue to offer the title and content at that price point right up until it is removed from digital/physical storefronts on December 31st, 2023.

We would like to thank our community for the dedication they've shown to Friday the 13th: The Game and Gun Interactive as a whole, and we are happy the game will live on awhile longer and continue to be enjoyed by anyone owning the game already.

Into the Black

Last Link of the Day: Pilots Who Ejected At The Last Second. Accurate description confirmed. Thanks VideoSift.

Lies of P Delayed; Demo Released

A World Premiere Trailer from Summer Game Fest shows off Lies of P, the upcoming dark Pinocchio action/RPG. It reveals a new release date, saying the game will arrive on September 19th, rather than its previously announced August release. It also concludes with the surprise announcement that a playable demo is available now for PC and consoles. The Windows demo is on Steam, which still reflects the previous release date. The demo is time-limited and will cease on June 26th. Word is "The Demo version of Lies of P will feature the first two chapters of the full game. Any progress made in the Demo version will not carry over to the full-release version." Here's an overview of the game:
You are a puppet created by Geppetto who’s caught in a web of lies with unimaginable monsters and untrustworthy figures standing between you and the events that have befallen the world of Lies of P.

You are awakened by a mysterious voice that guides you through the plagued city of Krat - a once lively place that has been poisoned by madness and bloodlust. In our soulslike, you must adapt yourself and your weapons to face untold horrors, untangle the unfathomable secrets of the city's elites and choose whether to confront predicaments with the truth or weave lies to overcome them on the journey to find yourself.
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Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown Announced

Today's Summer Game Fest unveiled Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown, a new Metroidvania installment that harkens back to the platformer roots of the series. We can see that in this trailer, which features a good deal of side-scrolling action. It's coming to PC via the Epic Games Store and Ubisoft Store, consoles, and Luna on Jan 18th, 2024. We'll get more details at the Ubisoft Forward presentation on Monday. For now, here's what we know:
In this brand-new adventure, players will embody Sargon, a young, gifted warrior, member of an elite group called The Immortals. As they are sent to rescue Prince Ghassan, they will explore Mount Qaf, a once wondrous place, now cursed and hostile. Sargon and his brothers-in-arms will soon discover that time itself will be a treacherous foe and that the world balance must be restored.

Inspired by the Metroidvania structure, Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown lets players explore a handcrafted world at their own pace. From the majestic Citadel of Knowledge to the colorful landscapes of the Hyrcanian Forest, players will discover a variety of environments inspired by Persian mythology. By acquiring new time powers, unlocking unique abilities and combining them in combat, Sargon will progressively delve deeper into Mount Qaf, solving puzzles, finding secrets, and completing exciting side quests.
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Get PAYDAY 2 for Free

It's time to get your weekly snag on at the Epic Games Store, where the latest giveaway is available. What was teased as a mystery game last week turns out to be PAYDAY 2, the co-op first-person shooter that puts you in a crew pulling off a series of bloody heists. It's yours to keep if you claim before the new freebies arrive next week. There's no mystery about that, as next week's giveaways are revealed to be Guacamelee! 2 and Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition. Back to the current promotion, here's a refresher on PAYDAY 2:
PAYDAY 2 is an action-packed, four-player co-op shooter that once again lets gamers don the masks of the original PAYDAY crew - Dallas, Hoxton, Wolf and Chains - as they descend on Washington DC for an epic crime spree.

The CRIMENET network offers a huge range of dynamic contracts, and players are free to choose anything from small-time convenience store hits or kidnappings, to big league cyber-crime or emptying out major bank vaults for that epic PAYDAY. While in DC, why not participate in the local community, and run a few political errands?

Summer Game Fest (and More) Today

Here's a reminder that Geoff Keighley's annual Summer Game Fest gets underway at 3:00 pm EDT today. You can tune in via the Summer Game Fest Website or any of a number of streaming partners. Word is Hideo Kojima's bestie has the usual array of announcements and first looks in store for us. And while the show may not have killed E3, it kicks off a lot of what used to be E3. Today's main fest stream precedes the Day of the Devs presentation from iam8bit and Double Fine and Devolver Digital's annual descent into madness. So to watch it all, clear four or five hours from your schedule. While you're looking at your calendar, bear in mind there's a Tribeca Games Spotlight tomorrow, and Saturday will see Wholesome Direct, the OTK Games Expo, and the Future Games Show. Sunday there's an Xbox Games Showcase, Starfield Direct, and the PC Gaming Show. And Monday will bring the chance to watch Ubisoft Forward and the Capcom Showcase.

Tour de France 2023 and Pro Cycling Manager 2023 Released

NACON and Cyanide Studio now offer annual bicycle racing games Tour de France 2023 for Windows on Steam and for consoles, and Pro Cycling Manager 2023 on Steam for Windows. The former is an action game, which requires a controller, even on PC. The latter is a management game where you must strategize to put together a winning team. Here's a Pro Cycling Manager 2023 Launch Trailer and a Tour de France 2023 Launch Trailer with looks at each. Read on for more:
In Tour de France 2023, players pedal via their controller to take on a selection of major races in the pro cycling calendar: Tour de France, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Flèche Wallonne, Paris-Nice, Critérium du Dauphiné, Paris-Tours, and Paris-Roubaix. Tour de France 2023 also provides the chance to ride for one of the 27 official World Tour and Pro Tour teams via various game modes, and experience the thrills of a pro cycling competition.

In Pro Cycling Manager 2023, the players manage their team’s preparations by means of a new training and task calendar management system. The official races have been updated to include all the 2023 ASO races such as the Tour de France, Paris-Roubaix or Paris-Nice. In order to make the game even closer to reality, its world rankings are now based on the real-life system (UCI points ranking). A national team application entry system for the World Championships has also been set up. The user interface has been improved for better gameplay and easier menu navigation.
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MotoGP 23 Released

If you're tired of pedaling (story above), the green flag has dropped on MotoGP 23, and the latest installment in this motorcycle racing series is now available for Windows on Steam and for consoles. The official website has details, purchase links, and a Launch Trailer with a look at the game's high-speed action. Here's word:
Open the throttle, pass your opponents and cross the finish line. Live the dream of being the next champion with the new MotoGP™23, more amazing and challenging than ever!
Compete in the three official championship categories MotoGP™, Moto2™ and Moto3™, step into the shoes of your favorite rider and head to the track to experience the adrenaline of the 2023 season.

Embark on your path to set the record: make your debut in Moto3™ and depending on your results, climb the rankings and go up a class.
Continue here to read the full story.

Resident Evil Village Sells 8M

It takes a village to exterminate zombies. And a tweet from Capcom reveals the population of this village is booming. Word (in two languages) is that survival/horror sequel Resident Evil Village has now sold more than eight million copies:
Resident Evil Village has just surpassed 8 million units sold! We owe this to all of our amazing fans. Thank you so much!

「バイオハザード ヴィレッジ」の販売本数が800万本を突破しました!素晴らしいファンの皆様の応援のおかげです。本当にありがとうございました!

Ubisoft+ Free Trial

Ubisoft announces Ubisoft Forward Deals. The article outlines various current discounts on Ubisoft games. It also announces a seven-day free trial of the Ubisoft+ service:
Ubisoft+ is offering a free trial for Ubisoft Forward! Anyone who signs up between June 8-21 will receive a free seven-day trial subscription, granting them access to a growing library, including top titles like Assassin's Creed Valhalla and Rainbow Six Siege, expansions like Assassin's Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarök and Far Cry 6: Lost Between Worlds, and a rotating selection of indie games like Beholder 2 and Neon Abyss. You can also get access to premium editions of games, as well as day one access to new releases. Additionally, every month you can earn exclusive in-game rewards like cosmetic items, and boosters. The free trial is available on PC through Ubisoft Connect, as well as Xbox through the Ubisoft+ Multi Access plan.*

* Territorial restrictions, terms and conditions apply. Auto-renews unless cancelled.

Age of Wonders 4: Dragon Dawn This Month

Paradox Interactive and Triumph Studios announce Dragon Dawn will launch on June 20th as the first content pack for Age of Wonders 4. As the title implies, it will add dragon-themed content to the fantasy strategy sequel. Owners of the game's Premium Edition or the Expansion Pass will automatically receive this. A first look is in this trailer, which includes both gameplay footage and developer commentary. There will also be a free update for the base game for those who are dragon their asses about buying the DLC. Here's word:
Like its name implies, the Age of Wonders 4: Dragon Dawn Content Pack is all about dragons. Players can build their fiery empires, lead reptilian armies, harness draconic magic, and set fire to their enemies as a Dragon Ruler. The pack will also launch alongside the free Wyvern Update, including an array of updates, quality of life upgrades, and balance changes identified by the Age of Wonders community.
Continue here to read the full story.

Tamarak Trail Demo

A playable demo for Tamarak Trail is now available on Steam, offering a sample of this deckbuilding roguelike for Windows. The previous Official Announce Trailer introduces the game. This post has details on the demo, saying it is English only, but the full game will support additional languages. Here's more:
In this deck-building roguelike, you'll use a customizable dice set as you battle through randomly generated trails - full of loot, mysteries, and danger to protect inhabitants from the evil that has corrupted the trail.

As a member of the Sturgeon Lodge: a secret society tasked with defeating a malevolent presence that has corrupted Tamarak Trail, it is your job to bring peace to all inhabitants.

Choose from a myriad of dice sides to create powerful synergies and manipulate the battlefield. Chain re-rolling and turning abilities to achieve unimaginable power!
Continue here to read the full story.

Virtual Reality Check

Op Ed

Morning Metaverse

Out of the Blue

The smoke around here yesterday was worse than Tuesday. It looks a little clearer thus far today, so maybe we're past the worst of it. I hope everyone affected is staying safe. We should already have an air purifier in the BlueTower due to MrsBlue's asthma, but we don't. I ordered one that won't arrive until Saturday. I hope it will be too late because things will clear by then. But either way, it seems like a good idea.

We didn't need further complications yesterday, but that didn't stop the kitchen sink from springing a leak. I've been able to accomplish simple sink repairs in the past, but this one is hard to work with, and I quickly gave up. Of course, the plumber took 30 seconds to fix this. It was just a loose connector. So I got to slap my forehead the way friends and family react to me when I solve their computer issues that quickly. Experience always helps. The good news is he figured out something else I screwed up. I complained that I couldn't get our newish water heater to do its job. The water wasn't so hot and ran out fairly quickly, even after I turned it up. He quickly identified our model as one with two separate thermostats (I had only found and adjusted one). Yup, having them at different temps was causing the problem and also risked burning out one of the heating elements. It doesn't seem having two thermostats that need to be in sync behind separate screw panels is a great design decision. But there it is. After a recalibration, I enjoyed a shower without running out of hot water for the first time in a long time. So even though we had to pay to get two trivial things cleared up, we probably got our money's worth.

Obituary: Pat Robertson Dead at 93. Thanks RedEye9.

Clearing Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.


Thanks Max.



The Funnies

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