Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare is (temporarily) free on Origin

Andy Chalk at

I was a big fan of Plants vs. Zombies (I literally own at least five distinct versions) but PvZ: Garden Warfare left me cold. As a $30 third-person online shooter, it had the stink of a cash-in, and so I paid it very little attention and ignored it completely at launch. But what I won't touch for 30 bucks, I'll jump all over when it's free.


The week's highs and lows in PC gaming

Phil Savage at

Each week PC Gamer’s writers gather around a seance table and ask the previous seven days to reveal themselves. Not like that.

New Crusader Kings 2 and Europa Universalis 4 expansions announced

Phil Savage at

Last night, Paradox took to a Gamescom stage to talk about their existing and future titles. During the conference, they announced Europa Universalis 4's third expansion, and Crusader Kings 2's, I dunno, sixty-ninth expansion? Something like that, anyway. EU4: Art of War will focus on the 30 Years War, and improve naval combat and army control. CK2: Charlemagne will introduce a new 769AD start date, and chart the rise of Charlemagne and The Holy Roman Empire.


World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor trailer previews new areas and battles

Phil Savage at

With last night's Warlords of Draenor release date announcement, World of Warcraft fans know when to use up all their remaining holiday days. But what will they be doing as they shirk off the responsibilities of dumb reality? Blizzard's "In Action" trailer gives us a taste, via a brief look at the expansion's new areas, Garrisons, PvP zones and more.


Invisible, Inc sneaks onto Steam Early Access next week

Phil Savage at

Ha! I did it! After hours of subroutines and advanced 3D GUI's, I've finally stolen Invisible, Inc's upcoming trailer and... Wait, what do you mean it's on YouTube? Well how about this intercepted communique detailing the procedural turn-based stealth game's Steam Early Access release on 19 August? They've got that, too? Honestly, I don't know why I bother.


Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain gameplay presentation shows the danger of horse manure

Shaun Prescott at

Now that Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has been confirmed for PC, we can indulge in gameplay footage knowing one day we'll walk in Snake's weary footsteps. The footage below was aired during a Gamescom livestream earlier this week, but thanks to YouTuber Shirrako it's available to those who missed it.


Space survival horror Routine is still happening, but Oculus Rift support is dropped for now

Shaun Prescott at

It's been a little while since we've heard anything about Routine, the space station survival horror game which excited us so back in 2012. Thankfully the project is still in development, as a recent Steam community update by studio Lunar Games confirms. There is one caveat, however: Oculus Rift support is no longer happening, at least in the short term.


World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor's Trolls will look like this

Shaun Prescott at

Take a moment to feast your eyes on these trolls. These troll models will be introduced to World of Warcraft this November as part of the Warlords of Draenor expansion, and don't they look nice? Won't it be pleasant to encounter trolls such as these in your adventures around Draenor.


Assassin's Creed: Unity gameplay video shows 12 minutes of new mechanics

Shaun Prescott at

Amid the churn of 30 second CGI trailers and cleverly cut (but mostly useless) 'gameplay' videos, it's nice to see Assassin's Creed: Unity played for a full 12 minutes with no interruptions. The video above details the new installment's revamped stealth systems, and demonstrates the increased freedom afforded to players this time around. It also looks pretty damn fine.


League of Legends champion Gnar is now available, see him in action here

Shaun Prescott at

You know what? Gnar is pretty cute. Just look at him. I don't want to get sentimental about Gnar, because he's a League of Legends champion and not say, a loved one, but I'm not sure watching Gnar die is something I'm prepared for. The video says Gnar has a "sweet cuddly face" with a "terrifying temper". Sounds like a cat to me.


Changing Arma 3's helicopters is Bohemia's first step toward a deeper simulation

Ian Birnbaum at

Arma 3 is good at many things. Bohemia Interactive’s military sim is a huge, open-world playground where action dramas unfold, but its greatest strengths show when it dwarfs you with scale. Being a lone sniper in three miles of sprawling mountain wilderness or driving with a vanguard of advancing tanks will strike awe into the heart of the most jaded gamer. Whatever it’s doing, Arma paints these experiences in broad strokes you can’t find anywhere else in gaming.

On the other hand, Take On Helicopters, Bohemia’s 2011 helicopter simulator, was great at a single, specific thing: modeling helicopter flight physics. Beyond the high-definition cockpit, its world was a blocky and lifeless version of Seattle. Seattle wasn’t the point, though: the inside of that cockpit was the point. All the love in that game went straight into those dials.

Dota 2 coming to Madison Square Garden for the largest e-sports event in New York City's history

Andy Chalk at

ESL One is bringing "the largest in-person competitive gaming event ever held on the East Coast" to New York City in October, with a Dota 2 tournament that will be held in the 5500-seat Theater at Madison Square Garden. The competition will take place during New York Super Week, a city-wide, ten-day-long pop culture festival with concerts, comedy shows, gaming, lectures and more.

The Elder Scrolls Online teases Update 4 with Upper Craglorn, the Serpent Trial and more

Andy Chalk at

Shadow Realms interview: BioWare sending out alpha invites next month

Wes Fenlon at

Shadow Realms will be playable sooner than anyone expected. BioWare only announced the 4v1 action RPG at Gamescom on Wednesday, but speaking after the EA press conference BioWare Austin General Manager Jeff Hickman revealed that alpha invites will be arriving in players’ inboxes next month. "I've never put a game into a player's hands as early as we're putting this game into players' hands," he told PC Gamer.

Ubisoft promises to do better by PC gamers

Andy Chalk at

Ubisoft's relationship with PC gamers has been strained for years. Always-on DRM, last-minute delays of PC releases, its insistence on uPlay and CEO Yves Guillemot's stated belief that nine out of ten PC gamers are filthy pirates have collectively made it a difficult publisher to love. But it promises that things are different now.

Galactic Civilizations III review (Early Access)

Richard Cobbett at

Alpha and Early Access reviews offer our preliminary verdicts on in-development games. We may follow up this unscored review with a final, scored review in the future. Read our full review policy for details.

The galaxy’s not very civilised at the moment. Admittedly, when it’s shared with the likes of the Drengin, that’s probably not going to change any time soon, but in the new Galactic Civilizations III beta, you enter a universe where diplomacy literally doesn’t exist. It’s a somewhat odd experience when you play like I do—aiming to establish empires based on mutual trust, brotherhood, and backstabbing with a comfortable advantage. Here though, right now, if you see an alien ship, it’s guaranteed to go for the throat, so you have to hit it faster. Not literally of course; the game’s entirely turn based.

Diablo 3 patch 2.1.0 opens a portal to the realm of the Treasure Goblins

Andy Chalk at

Where do the Treasure Goblins come from—and where do they go? Their mysterious ways have been a well-kept secret for years, but not for much longer: The Diablo 3 2.1.0 patch will allow players to enter their home, the strange region known as the Vault, where boundless wealth awaits.


Pixel Boost: Deus Ex at 5K

Wes Fenlon at

Twice a month, Pixel Boost guides you through the hacks, tricks, and mods you'll need to run a classic PC game on Windows 7/8. Each guide comes with a free side of hi-res screenshots from the LPC celebrating the graphics of PC gaming's past. This week: Looking sharp, JC Denton. Real sharp.

It's one of the best RPGs ever made. It's one of the best games ever made, period. Deus Ex needs little introduction—since 2000, Ion Storm's first-person shooter/RPG has been the benchmark for open-ended game design. There's always a secret vent to crawl through, or a door to hack, or an NPC to persuade. Deus Ex's popularity endures to this day, and modders are still working to make the game look better every year. We decided to pay ol' JC Denton a visit on modern Windows and snap 33 5K screenshots. Here are the tools you can use to do the same.

Cloud Chamber review

Christopher Livingston at

A mysterious signal, possibly from outer space. The death of the person who discovered it, possibly from foul play. A database consisting of distorted video clips and scientific calculations, hastily scanned documents and blurry photocopies, scribbled notes and old photographs, all needing to be examined, sorted out, and puzzled over.


World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor coming in November

Andy Chalk at

With some spectacular cinematic sequences, Blizzard has revealed the launch date for World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor.