The Witcher 3 will include a Hearthstone-style game-within-a-game called Gwent

Andy Chalk at

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is going to be a very big game, but CD Projekt Red is apparently concerned that hunting monsters, handling politics and trying to unravel the mysteries of the Wild Hunt won't be enough to keep players busy. So on top of everything else, it's added a collectible card game featuring four distinct factions battling for supremacy with an array of soldiers, spells and unique heroes. It sounds familiar, but it's not Hearthstone: It's Gwent.

CS:GO ESL One Championship: watch these two amazing matches

Evan Lahti at

The group stage of the ESL One Cologne 2014 just wrapped up today, whittling down the beginning 16 teams to an elite eight. We've already had two incredible matches out of Group D, and both have featured American team Cloud9, which faced Titan (France) and Team Dignitas (Denmark) as an underdog.


How to set up Steam in-home streaming on your PC

Wes Fenlon at

Steam in-home streaming may be the future of PC gaming in the living room. Sure, you can build a powerful gaming machine for the living room. But that's expensive. You might be able to run an HDMI cable from your desktop to your big screen TV. But that's usually impractical. In-home streaming is the third option: you use an old PC, or build a low-power client box, to stream games over your home network. Valve's in-home streaming started as an exclusive beta feature in Steam, but now it's built right into the client and available to anyone. It only takes about five minutes to set up, and it works amazingly well.

If you're ready to try out in-home streaming yourself, I'll walk you through the whole process: how to enable streaming in Steam, what kind of host PC and client you'll need, how to make sure your home network is up to the task, and how to control your games once they're up and running.

Star Citizen's Gamescom livestream begins at 12 pm PDT, and you can watch it here

Andy Chalk at

Writing news posts for things that haven't actually happened yet is a tricky business, so let's just stick to the facts: Star Citizen gameplay will be livestreamed from Gamescom at noon PDT, and you can catch it all right here. (Wild speculation about what's going to happen during the stream is contained within.)


Crawl review (Early Access)

PC Gamer 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.

Step into the next randomly generated room of the dungeon, hear the click as the doors lock, and see the traps and summoning circles that await and you’ll know that death is haunting you. In Crawl, Powerhoof’s ‘co-opetition’ game currently on Steam Early Access, death isn’t just inevitable, it’s required. But Powerhoof has managed to take the classic dungeon crawler formula and make dying fun as hell.

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor Collector's Edition will let you run your mouse on Blackhand's face

Andy Chalk at

The Warlords of Draenor Collector's Edition may not be the cheapest way to go about getting the upcoming World of Warcraft expansion, but fans with a taste for swag will no doubt want to take a moment to at least consider the option.


Inside IndieBox, the startup bringing back the glory of 80s game packaging

Andy Chalk at

Consider the box. There was a time when the lowly construct of cardboard was more ubiquitous than Steam: If you wanted a game, you bought it in a box, complete with manual, reference card, promotional material for other games in the publisher's catalog, and, in many cases, “the stuff”: Supplemental reading material, perhaps, or a swanky poster, or a microscopic alien space fleet in a ziplock bag. And it was good. Browsing row upon row of brightly colored boxes of various sizes and shapes was exciting not just because you knew you'd be coming home with something, but because you could never be entirely certain what was inside. That mystery is an element of the game-buying experience that's just not possible with the "all things at all times" nature of digital distribution, and for some gamers that's a real loss.

IndieBox hopes to fill that void with a unique blind subscription service: an indie game delivered to your mailbox every month, along with specially crafted box art, a manual, and other goodies. You never know what you're going to get: You pays your dime, as they say, and you takes your chances. It is perhaps an odd way to do business, but as co-founder John Carter explained, there’s an odd kind of sense to it, too.


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