Hidden Path Entertainment

Age of Mythology: Extended Edition announced by an alpaca puppet hitting a keyboard

Tom Sykes at

Game announcements have settled into a tired, cynically hype-generating routine. First you have your logo on a black background, then after months of nothing you have a 20-second teaser trailer, followed by a preview that contains roughly three nuggets of new information. Could we not replace all that with an alpaca puppet banging his head on a keyboard? Yes, says the man in his dressing gown writing PC Gamer's news posts, although it took Microsoft Studios' streaming team to make this brave new world a reality.

Partway through a stream of Age of Empires II: HD Edition yesterday, a puppet named Alfred (and his handler) appeared on the screen. After whacking his head on a keyboard a few times, the above image then appeared, revealing an Age of Mythology: Extended Edition, yes, with a Steam logo plastered over the top. One of the devs of AoE2 HD later confirmed the news on Reddit.


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's seasonal update brings new maps and deadly gifts

Phil Savage at

Like a drunken uncle, CS:GO is going to be offensive this Christmas. It'll be making lewd jokes, swearing incoherently, and... oh, the other kind of offensive? I guess that makes sense. In that case, the Winter Offensive update will bring a new case of weapons skins, a new e-sports crowd-funding case, and - in a limited format - two new maps. All in all, it's not very wintry. But is it offensive?


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive devs working on a new, curiously whimsical sandbox game

Katie Williams at

Having worked on Counter-Strike: GO and Defense Grid, can you guess what Hidden Path Entertainment is doing next? You probably wouldn't have guessed a game that was "two parts Minecraft and one part Fez with a dash of Proteus' dreaminess sprinkled over the top" on your first try, but that's pretty much exactly what they're doing with Windborne, a single- and multi-player game featuring friendly pet dragons wiggling to a tinkerbox soundtrack.


Defense Grid 2's future secured by unnamed investor

Phil Savage at

Hidden Path's Kickstarter was a strange campaign. Despite the "Defense Grid 2" title, what backers were actually funding was Containment - a DLC expansion pack for the first game of the tower-defence series. The sequel wasn't secured unless the total reached $1 million - $750,000 over the supposed target fund. In total, the campaign raised over $270,000, which technically made it a success, but was far short of the needed DG2 stretch goal.

But! Despite the shortfall, Defense Grid 2 is now in production thanks to the money injection of a secret investor. The team explain more in a video update.


Defense Grid 2 funded by secret investor after Kickstarter fell short

T.J. Hafer at

The Defense Grid 2 Kickstarter came to a close last August having just barely met its $250,000 goal. This amount funded the production of the original Defense Grid's expansion, Containment, but failed to meet the stretch goal required to guarantee that Hidden Path would move ahead on Defense Grid 2. Luckily for Defense Grid fans, a Kickstarter update has just announced that an outside investor put up the extra cash to make the sequel happen, and all backers will still be receiving a copy at no extra cost when the game releases in early 2014.


Age of Empires 2 HD patch fixes framerates on higher-end systems

T.J. Hafer at

Age of Empires II: HD Edition has been out a little over a week, and has scarcely left the Top 5 best-selling titles on Steam since. It hasn't all been sunshine and mutton dinners with the polished-up classic, however, as the realities of getting such a dated engine to run on modern machines has caused some quirks. A patch is now available for beta opt-in that, notably, fixes framerate issues on higher-end machines.


Age of Empires II: HD is playable now on Steam

T.J. Hafer at

Well, this is a pleasant surprise: Age of Empires II: HD Edition is live on Steam for anyone who pre-ordered—apparently it has been as of the 5th. The store page still says it won't unlock for about another 17 hours, but the game launches fine, and all modes seem to be available. Since buying it now is still technically a pre-order, you should just be able to hand over your e-cash and get immediate access. It's essentially a soft release.


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive update adds cs_militia, reworks hostage rescue system

Omri Petitte at

Valve has sent out a patch for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive that focuses on tweaking Hostage Rescue rules for stronger balance and to entice players away from the long-favored Bomb Defusal. Most notably, CTs have now adopted the tactical doctrine of draping hostages across their shoulders like a squishy scarf, and only a single rescue is needed to secure a win for the good guys.


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive patch data hints at custom map Support Pass

Omri Petitte at

The CS community took out their knives and eagerly sprinted forward to the hundreds of user-made maps filling Global Offensive's Workshop since last month. We've got a nice stack of them running on our own server, and Valve is evidently looking to copy that setup on its own servers. Data-divers of reddit have found mention of a "Support Pass" in the next patch for players to purchase and access a pool of community maps soon to join the official server rotation.


Age of Empires 2 HD won't have LAN play

T.J. Hafer at

Wah waaaaaaaah. The sad trombone is here to announce that the official Age of Empires II FAQ has revealed that the Steam re-release of the RTS classic won't have LAN play. The single player will be playable in Steam's offline mode, but you'll have to have an internet connection to play multiplayer. It's not all gloomy tidings, though. Read on for a break-down of what we know about the game so far.

Age of Empires 2: HD to launch with improved visuals, Steam Workshop on April 9

T.J. Hafer at

The rumors were true. Age of Empires II HD (which includes the content from the Conquerors expansion) is coming to Steam in April. And it's been aged up to the Modern Era (courtesy of Hidden Path Entertainment), with a host of tweaks and new features. We've got more details and a graphical comparison below.


The best CS:GO custom maps

Evan Lahti at

As I hoped, CS:GO’s appearance on Steam Workshop eased the map drought irking Global Offensive players since launch. About 700 Defusal, Hostage Rescue, Deathmatch, Arms Race, and other maps now populate Steam Workshop, and all are available for easy download (and auto-updating) through Steam. I’ve played a bunch of them with our community over the past week.


Defense Grid: Containment out on January 23, adds eight levels and community maps

Omri Petitte at

Hidden Path's Kickstarter campaign for Defense Grid 2 edged past its minimum goal of $250,000/£156,400 back in August, providing funds for Defense Grid: Containment, an expansion for the alien-annihilating tower defense original releasing January 23 for $5/£3.


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Pro Tip video shows how to become a noob camping AWPer

Omri Petitte at

At least, that's probably the sort of nomenclature you'd reap from public servers after applying the skills picked up from Team Dynamic marksman Keven "AZK" Larivière for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's one-hit wonder AWP sniper rifle. As part of Valve's Pro Tip video series, Larivière spills the bullets on the best uses of a sniper's superior oversight, when each of the two zoom levels come most in handy, and how shooting the legs off a careless opponent equates to a high-caliber "tsk-tsk."


Counter-Strike: Global Offensive updated with two new maps

Omri Petitte at

Valve updated Counter-Strike: Global Offensive today with two additional maps and a refit of the Classic Competitive matchmaking system. Vertigo, a classic Defusal map, returns with a Source facelift to its multi-leveled mayhem and shadowy camping nest corners, while Monastery chills things out with an Arms Race among the snowy promenades of a windswept temple.