Gabe Newell's AMA: Steam to become a "self-publishing system," CS:GO coming to Linux

Emanuel Maiberg at

Valve’s Gabe Newell did an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit today, answering scores of community questions and no, not revealing that he has a build of Half-Life 3 hidden in a volcano lair. If you're hearing otherwise, one user edited his (now deleted) question to include Half-Life 3 and create the appearance that Newell confirmed it. Nope. He did, however, talk about Source 2, Steam, CS: GO, and Dota 2, as well as answer a question vaguely related to HL3 in the form of a question about Ricochet 2.

Gabe Newell: Valve Anti-Cheat does not look at your browsing history

Emanuel Maiberg at

Two days ago, Reddit user theonlybond posted lines of code from Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC), the software Steam uses to curb online cheating, accusing it of scanning users' internet browsing history and sending it back to Valve. Other users were quick to point out that the accusations were unfounded, but the discussion got serious enough for Gabe Newell to make an official statement.

Gabe Newell says he'll do a Reddit AMA if charity event raises enough money

Tom Sykes at

I'm willing to bet that you have some questions for Gabe Newell. Questions like 'How did you cultivate such a magnificent beard?', 'Who's your favourite Thundercat?', and 'Why was Tom Hanks snubbed in this year's Oscar nominations?' Also something about Half-Life 3. Soon, all your questions will be answered. Maybe. Depending on a few things. The biggest being the little matter of the $500,000. Valve's resident overlord took to Reddit earlier to promote the Heart of Racing charity event, and after answering a few questions and proving that he's the real deal, Newell said he'll participate in an AMA (Ask Me Anything) if the event raises $500K in donations.

DayZ Standalone needs more optimization before release, says Dean Hall

Cory Banks at

DayZ developer Dean "Rocket" Hall took to Reddit on Monday to discuss the current state of the standalone version for the popular Arma 2 mod. The final version, unfortunately, is still a ways off, due to Hall's insistence that the game needs more optimization and bug fixes before he's happy with it.

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag lead writer doubts series will take place in present day

Perry Vandell at

Following the release of their tribute to the pirate life, a handful of Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag developers took to Reddit and addressed a few burning questions from fans. They avoided touching on where Ubisoft would take the series post Black Flag, but that didn’t stop them from sharing where they thought the series wasn’t going.

Telltale founder interested in creating Star Wars game, other games in the works

Perry Vandell at

Telltale Games founders Dan Connors and Kevin Bruner held a Reddit AMA on Tuesday, where they discussed their process for writing stories and their successful episodic model while hinting at their plans for the future, and divulged what the developer's dream setting for future adventure games would be.

League of Legends shoutcasters hold Reddit AMA, advertise new commentating positions

Perry Vandell at

A handful of professional League of Legends commentators halted their lengthy discussions of counter jungle strategies, the best times to hard leash, and other MOBA jargon to host a Reddit AMA ("Ask Me Anything"), where they talked about their jobs and how you can get do it, too.

Max Payne and Alan Wake writer delivers answers in Reddit AMA

Perry Vandell at

The creator and writer of Max Payne and Alan Wake, Sam Lake, shared a few words with the internet denizens of Reddit in an “Ask Me (Almost) Anything” thread. There, he shared his process for game writing, what changes he would make for Alan Wake 2, and what he had for breakfast that morning

Monaco developer may add two more competitive modes

Katie Williams at

Thievery's hard, yo. That's something Monaco developer Andy Schatz discovered in the process of formulating two new competitive modes for the top-down stealth game. Neither made it to the final released version, but they sound like a lot of fun, and Schatz still hopes that at least one of them will become a future DLC.

Maxis explains the use of SimCity always-online DRM

Evan Lahti at

The most controversial topic in Maxis’ Reddit AMA last week was SimCity’s use of always-online DRM. Many fans objected to the principle of needing to be online when playing the game alone. "If a game requires me to be online all the time to play it, sorry, I can't get behind buying it," one comment read. Another: "Didn't work for Diablo 3 not going to work for you. Sorry, just lost a buyer." (Diablo 3’s record sales would beg to differ, unfortunately.)

Today, Maxis frontwoman and senior VP Lucy Bradshaw has stepped in in an attempt to clear the air. In a statement on, she touches on EA’s design motivations and technical reasons for implementing an always-online requirement in all SimCity modes, emphasizing that the game “was designed to be connected from the ground up.”

DayZ creator Dean Hall hopes he implements "a lot of bad ideas" in the standalone version

Tyler Wilde at

In an exchange on the DayZ subreddit, mod creator Dean "Rocket" Hall responded to concern over the idea of infections and defecation in the upcoming standalone version of DayZ by defending bad ideas. "I hope I implement alot of bad ideas," wrote Hall. "So that then, we know they are bad. Then we can remove them and move on."

EA gives away thousands of games by accident

Marsh Davies at

Gamers who participated in an Electronic Arts survey at the weekend were rewarded with a $20 Origin discount code. Or so EA presumably thought. Poor EA. In fact, the code worked for everyone, not just those who took part in the survey, and could be used to chug down an unlimited number of $20 games, all for free - a fact which was quickly publicised on Reddit and Overclockers.

Carbine Studios' dev hosting reddit AMA on his 18 years in the MMO industry

Josh Augustine at

Jeremy Gaffney co-founded Turbine (Asheron's Call, Lord of the Rings Online, Dungeons & Dragons Online) in 1994. He was lead programmer on Ultima Online 2 before helping found Destination Games in 2001, which later became the US headquarters for NCsoft (Guild Wars, City of Heroes, Lineage II). Nowadays he's an executive producer, working on Wildstar at Carbine Studios.

He just started an Ask Me Anything thread on reddit to answer any and all questions regarding the games he's worked on and the MMO industry as a whole.

Diablo 3 and Guild Wars 2 devs will answer your questions on Reddit this afternoon [UPDATED]

Josh Augustine at

Journalists have been asking developers questions all week at E3, but a couple of developers are opening up questions to their entire playerbase this afternoon, thanks to the wonderful magic of the internet.

Lead developers on Diablo 3 and Guild Wars 2 are hosting separate Ask Me Anything events on reddit this afternoon. Here's the schedules and topics so you can get involved.

SOPA protests: Minecraft, Firefall, Reddit going dark next week. Nvidia, Runic and Frozenbyte come out against the bill

Tom Senior at

Earlier this week Reddit announced that they would be switching off for twelve hours next Wednesday from 8am–8pm EST (1300–0100 UTC) in protest at the Stop Online Piracy Act. Today Red 5 Studios and Mojang have announced that they will also go dark and Nvidia, Runic and Frozenbyte have voiced their opposition to the bill.

Red 5 CEO, Mark Kern confirmed to Shacknews that "Red 5 Studios is joining Reddit in protest of SOPA by going dark on January 18. We will be taking down our website, community site and Firefall beta for 24 hours on the 18th."

"We are extremely disappointed in this misguided legislation. We are also ashamed of the ESA for supporting a bill which is clearly not in the best interests of gamers or the game industry. This bill, and it's sister bill, Protect IP, will shut down live streaming, shout casting, user generated content and have a chilling effect on game innovation and social media," he added.

On Twitter, Notch has mentioned that and will go down next Wednesday in protest.

Crack the Deus Ex: Human Revolution code

Richard Cobbett at

Have you seen the cryptic code on the Deus Ex: Human Revolution title screen? Reddit has, and its codebreakers are already at work. A URL? An SQL injection? Part of a longer reference to Megadeth? All theories are welcome, and if you're looking for a hacking challenge slightly more involved than realising you can click multiple nodes at once when attacking systems, here you go.

This mysterious code follows up promises of a special announcement yesterday, which could be anything from DLC to news of an expansion, to a slightly premature celebration of Deus Ex at least temporarily kicking Zumba Fitness from its perch on the Top 10. At the very least, it looks like there's something interesting on the way, regardless of how long it takes this code to be cracked open.

PC Gamer US Podcast #267: IAmA Podcast

PC Gamer at

Chris leads the team as Logan, Dan, Evan and Lucas discuss Minecraft's profits, GameStop buying Impulse, Logan's scandalous Reddit tell-all, a new spin on Truthiness and Falsity, a major videocard listener question, and much more!

PC Gamer US Podcast 267: IAmA Podcast