If I was nerdy enough to have a "favorite engine," it would probably be the Unreal Engine - not necessarily for its technical achievements (though you can't say it hasn't been pivotal in game development's innovation the past decade), but for its accessibility. The easy-breezy development kit has been especially kind to indies, and because of that, some brilliantly creative games have been built on the engine. Now Steam's flogging an Unreal Indie Bundle, and for $20, it's actually got a pretty admirable selection of games.
Oculus Rift developer kits started shipping out earlier this week, but a few games already offer a user-level taste of THE FUTURE. The most notable playground is Team Fortress 2, mystical land of hat fanatics and now disorienting camera movement. Tech site Tested, hosted by PC Gamer alumnus Norman Chan and former Maximum PC editor-in-chief Will Smith, stepped into the Rift and played a few Payload rounds while discussing the 3D effects, the ease of acclimatizing oneself, and calibration.
Pocketwatch's top-down heist game Monaco picked up a lot of attention from us for its co-op team of specialized burglars and the carefully constructed capers they can execute. After years spent in the boiler, it's ready for go-time. Monaco's Twitter account says the robbing will begin April 24 on Steam.
If you're concerned about the state of innovation in modern shooters, don't paint a bullseye on the genre just yet. Intruder, an upcoming multiplayer FPS from the two-man Superboss Games, features plenty deviations from popular Dutyfields of today in the hopes of offering a more tactical approach to online shooting.
During a talk at GDC today, Creative Assembly revealed a new direction for its Total War series: Total War Arena, a completely multiplayer and free-to-play combination of RTS and MOBA elements.
Reloaded's cops-and-robbers MMO APB: Reloaded escaped death once already when the studio picked up the shelved title in 2011 after dwindling player numbers and the demise of original developer Realtime Worlds almost sent it to the slammer permanently. Now, we're getting another APB, but it's a gun of an entirely different caliber: an agility-based multiplayer shooter. Reloaded explains it all on its Kickstarter campaign for APB Vendetta, where it asks for $300,000 in 30 days.
The next great challenge for the industry might be turning the PC into a bastion of shooting ancient dinosaurs in the maw with plenty of bullets and perhaps a rocket or two. The latest game vying to fill that gap is Orion: Dino Horde, a more robust followup to Spiral's shakily launched Dino Beatdown co-op shooter from last year. Along with continuing the same mode of class-based co-op against waves of scaly assailants, Dino Horde also brings 5 vs. 5 competitive matches with one team channeling their inner Skorpiovenator.
What's the best way to introduce more footage of Warface, Crytek's upcoming free-to-play multiplayer shooter? It's definitely not a combination of carefully choreographed combat interspersed with way too many camera cuts to a coin, a coin flipping through the air, a coin rolling over fingers, or a coin just sitting there. Nope, what we need is—oh, fine, Crytek, I guess you can somehow show us both more of the game and the symbolic importance of disc-shaped currency. It's not like your competing in the lens-flare-blasted theatrics market or anything, sheesh.
A trio of Battlefield 4 screenshots has been fished out of a DICE media directory by hawk-eyed NeoGAF users. All three shots boast environment effects and textures powered through the meaty Frostbite 3 engine, features particularly apparent in the first-person outdoor gaze of a massive cloud of birds flying lazily about in a sunny afternoon.
The day of Battlefield 4's rain-spattered reveal is upon us, and we've got troops deployed at GDC to bring you all the info when it hits. The fourth major Battlefield game continues a franchise of massive multiplayer warzones and vehicle-on-infantry combat, but Battlefield 3 has borne the series banner for the past two years across a highly anticipated launch and five subsequent add-on packs. In a dev diary video, members of DICE look back on the game's design hurdles and post-launch reception, all of which has likely influenced what we'll see in Battlefield 4 today.
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.
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.
Digital Extremes isn't just working on naked space dinos. It's also busy with bringing us armored space cyborg ninjas in Warframe, its co-op third-person shooter showing up later this year. It hit open beta earlier this week, and Nvidia has shared a tech trailer showing off the slick PhysX effects owners of its cards can glimpse while cartwheeling off walls and stabbing things with nano-swords.
I can finally look forward to the best chance I have for merging my consciousness with the Heavy as he bellows his way across Gold Rush. Valve put out a notice yesterday announcing the Oculus Rift's VR sorcery will soon work for Team Fortress 2 in a free update later this week, marking the first Valve game to take advantage of the Kickstarted, consumer-priced goggles.
Official invites for Battlefield 4's GDC unveiling poured in last week, plopping an unfocused Abrams guardian right next to the RSVP email. Now All Games Beta has fished out the entirety of the invite's background image, which offers a few more hints on the fourth 'fields' setting.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has a lot of custom maps. Seriously, browse its Steam Workshop page and see for yourself. We've talked about some of our favorites (all of which appear in our CS:GO sessions on our server), but a classic map layout we've yet to see a worthy update for is de_rats' bomb-defusal play in an oversized kitchen. DJ PC820 and TastySlopsicle's de_dolls_csgo is perhaps the best spiritual iteration we've spotted yet.
The five-man team at Wolfire Games isn't just known for update videos of a game where rabbits and wolves punch and slice each other. The indie studio participated in the recently wrapped Mojam charity gamesmithing competition, and as part of a randomized theme involving "endless nuclear war," Wolfire debuted Low Light Combat, a multiplayer FPS of shadow and snow.
MechWarrior Online March content plan includes largest map yet, more keybinds, "dynamic hanging items"
Piranha has outlined the upcoming March updates for MechWarrior Online, which will include usability improvements and new items for players to tinker with while dancing the mech-on-mech ballet. The coming weeks bring, among other features, one-use modules, an expanded set of piloting controls, and dangly accessories for your cockpit such as fuzzy dice.
Sure, Evan's adoration of Counter-Strike's cs_office is an excellent examination, but I noticed a distinct lack of giant Earth backdrops and soothing ambient techno. No longer: in this week's video, I'm here to explain why Unreal Tournament's beloved Facing Worlds map boasts a legacy of balance and beauty as one of the greatest multiplayer maps.