The Sims 4 gameplay video and hands-on impressions

PC Gamer at

I've been eager to get my hands on the Sims 4 since seeing the trailer revealed at E3 this year. Last week, I got a chance to play for a little more than five hours. I didn't find the new emotion system to be as exciting as Maxis is selling it to be, but there are a number of smaller, meaningful improvements to playability that I was really happy with. Watch the video for my full thoughts on the latest Sims installment.


Wasteland 2 release is "pretty likely" to slip into September

Phil Savage at

Here's a news story you'll be familiar with: an RPG is being delayed. This time, though, it's not a big-budget slip from The Witcher 3 or Dragon Age: Inquisition, but rather the Kickstarter funded Wasteland 2. The reason is a little different, too. The game is likely to be pushed back a few weeks so that InXile can fulfil the physical side of their long-awaited sequel's release.


Double Action: Boogaloo released, is a spiritual successor to The Specialists mod

Phil Savage at

Action? Not good enough. Double Action? You're getting warmer. Double Action: Boogaloo? I don't know what that means, but sure, okay. The packed-action shooter mod—a spiritual successor to Half-Life 1's The Specialists—is now available for download. It lets you flip, dive and slide, peppering enemies with slow-mo fire from akimbo pistols, or engaging in frantic free-fall firefights before gravity finishes the job.


PlanetSide 2 will introduce new Directives achievement system this week

Shaun Prescott at

PlanetSide 2 is getting a new progression system know as 'Directives' later this week, and they'll bring more than just bragging rights. According to the notes for a huge patch releasing on Tuesday, the Directives will unlock 'exclusive' Auraxium prestige weapons and decorative items, so that you can easily flaunt your Directive Tree progress to all and sundry.


Heroes of the Storm 'artifacts' progression system abandoned

Shaun Prescott at

Barely a fortnight after Blizzard outlined plans to introduce a new 'Artifacts' progression system to Heroes of the Storm, the functionality been removed. The controversial system was Heroes of the Storm's answer to League of Legends' Runes system, but thanks to a combination of community handwringing and balancing issues, it is now no more.


Planescape: Torment review — March 2000, US edition

PC Gamer at

Every Sunday, Tyler publishes a classic PC Gamer review from the '90s or early 2000s, with his context and commentary followed by the full, original text from the archived issue. More classic reviews here.

We recently named Planescape: Torment the best RPG of all time, and our original review confirms that we felt much the same way 14 years ago. Torment was good then, and remains great—and lucky for us, it's available on GOG. Thank you, you beautiful Polish preservers of PC gaming history.

Watch The Talos Principle being played...poorly

Tom Sykes at

As a fan of Jonas Kyratzes' work, I did a double-take when I saw his name at E3, during the trailer for Croteam's The Talos Principle. The Lands of Dream co-creator, along with talented fellow writer Tom Jubert (The Swapper, FTL, Penumbra), and of course developers Croteam, are making a philosophical first-person puzzler and "metaphysical parable about intelligence and meaning in an inevitably doomed world". As this hour-and-a-bit Let's Play of the beta version reveals, it's a metaphysical parable about intelligence and meaning in an inevitably doomed world involving droney robots, security cameras, QR codes and jamming devices. Also a beautiful Mediterranean ruined world.


Dominions 4 diary part two: war elephants, hurricanes and fallen gods

Tom Senior at

Last week my pretender god Balboa conquered a quarter of the world of Valanis despite spending most of the time asleep. It’s a good time to come out of hibernation: Lanka has two other nations ruled by competing wannabe deities.

Dominions gives you a vague summary of an army before it attacks, so I know about the wolves, harpies and maenads that are about to strike my river fortress at Dragon Pointe. It’s not until I see the replay of my 175-unit army meeting their 250-strong force on the field that I see the truth. Centaurs and satyrs line up alongside horned snakes that tower above the throng. Crocodiles waddle around the feet of ogres, minotaurs and centaur wizards. A couple of dryads hang near the back, casting spells under the protection of a flock of crows.

Stained developer issuing keys to Indie Royale Bundle buyers after all

Tom Sykes at

Following on from this story last week, Stained developer RealAxis Software is now sending out Steam keys to people who bought the game via the Indie Royale Bundle. RealAxis have clarified the situation in their original Steam forum post, and it appears to be a case of poor management of Steam keys: they were sending them out individually via email, which does sound like a particularly maddening way to go about it. Whatever the case, the developers appear to have come to a solution with Indie Royale, and now bundle buyers should be receiving their Steam keys after all.


Mod of the Week: Haknslash Essentials, for Torchlight II

Christopher Livingston at

Every week I spot some new mod content for Torchlight II -- a new character class, a new pet, some small but interesting tweaks to the UI or gameplay -- but rarely something meaty enough to devote an entire column to. That's why I'm excited to have come across Haknslash Essentials, a mod that's jam-packed with other mods, fifty in total, giving you a simple one-click subscription to a whole new Torchlight II experience. With a bunch of mighty new classes, an array of interesting and colorful new pets, plus new scenery, new items, and tons more, it's the perfect collection for anyone looking to start a new game with more options than ever.


The Best Free Games of the Week

Tom Sykes at

The VR/flight stick/oh-my-god-I'm-in-a-spaceship approach to space games might be a particularly bloody exciting one, but that doesn't mean you need to re-mortgage your cutlery to experience the wonder of that huge expanse of darkness up there. This week's Even the Stars offers a universe of beauty, haunting emptiness and low-poly spaceships, and to experience it you won't need to spend a dime. Read on for exactly that, plus a game about falling, video killed the horror star, and a deep, deep, deep, deep sleep. Enjoy!


TOXIKK says no to XP systems, regenerating health; yes to all-caps and double jumps

Tom Sykes at

The name needs work—and by that I mean the name needs to be fired into the sun—but this debut trailer for TOXIKK sure knows how to go after a disenchanted audience. It's a multiplayer first-person shooter that aims to take the genre "back to its roots", and as the giant text in the following video makes abundantly clear, that means no classes, no levelling systems, no regenerating health, no cover, no iron sights, no reloading, and no free-to-play. Basically, "no bullshit", in their words. It's a bold trailer, undermined only slightly by TOXIKK's shiny generic soldiers, and general paucity of defining features at this stage. Also it being named 'TOXIKK', but what can you do.


Awesomenauts gets even more MOBAy with its latest beta patch

Tom Sykes at

Sidescrolling MOBA-like Awesomenauts gets a little less like and a little more MOBA with an upcoming patch, which is now in beta if you want to try it out. 2.6 ditches the loadout system and replaces it with a full-on shop. Sorry, a "big ass shop" that will allow you to buy whatever you want during a match. Well, anything Awesomenauts-related anyway. You won't be able to buy a Faberge egg or anything like that. The update also adds new bots, nifty graphs during replays, and a profile screen—this forum post will inform you of the whole kaboodle.


Saturday Crapshoot: Hell Cab

Richard Cobbett at

Every week, Richard Cobbett rolls the dice to bring you an obscure slice of gaming history, from lost gems to weapons grade atrocities. This week, prepare to go on the ride of your life... or rather, death.

There are a few basic rules for safe tourism. If anyone offers you food claiming that it's a 'local delicacy', it's a trap. Don't drink the water; you're on holiday, be more adventurous. If the sign saying "Keep Off The Grass" also includes the words "By Order Of El Presidente" then for god's sake, stay off the grass, and should you find that your taxi cab is literally labelled "Hell Cab"... well, does it really need to be said? Apparently yes, it does. Because, it seems, there's always one idiot not paying attention.

Verdun review (Early Access)

Tyler Wilde at

I feel like someone’s expendable RTS unit as I dart through a muddy maze of trenches. My only goal right now is pathfinding: trudge from cover to cover on my way to the French line as they pelt the no man’s land between us. Trying to pick off entrenched riflemen might help a little, but I have to get into the trench to take it. I get into the trench, and get shot in the face.


No Man's Sky is a timed exclusive for PlayStation 4, but a PC version is coming

Andy Chalk at

It's been an interesting ride for No Man's Sky here at PC Gamer. We really liked what we saw at E3, but less than two weeks later we couldn't even say for certain if it was coming to the PC at all. It's apparently now been confirmed that it is, but not until sometime after the launch of the PS4 version.


BioWare's Mass Effect Comic Con panel is now on YouTube

Andy Chalk at

A full-length recording of BioWare's Mass Effect panel at Comic-Con has been turned loose on YouTube. "Charting a Course: Developing the Next Mass Effect" doesn't reveal anything we didn't already know, but die-hard fans with 30 minutes to spare will probably want to check it out anyway.


The Sims 4 Rewards program offers bonus content to Sims 3 owners

Andy Chalk at

The Sims 4 is all about feelings, as you may have heard, and people who own The Sims 3 will enjoy—or perhaps suffer—even more of them than everyone else. Electronic Arts is offering a Sims 4 Rewards program that will unlock emotionally influential bonus content for owners of the previous Sims game.


Can you play Elite: Dangerous on an Android tablet? It turns out you can…

Dave James at

Okay, so this is mostly just going to be filed under the ‘for shits and giggles’ category, but Nvidia have just delivered their latest SHIELD Tablet to the office and I’ve been taking it out for a quick spin.

And what better way to test it’s streaming capabilities than taking to the inky black in a shiny new Sidewinder...


John Carmack's "20 Years After Doom" SMU talk finally hits YouTube

Andy Chalk at

Remember back in June, when John Carmack confirmed that he wasn't going to be at QuakeCon but promised as a consolation prize that his lengthy talk at Southern Methodist University's Lyle School of Engineering would (probably) still be released? More than three months after it took place, the video has finally made its way to YouTube.