We're back! After a few weeks of work on special operations, we found a moment to catch us (and you) up on October and November's big games: XCOM: Enemy Within, Call of Duty: Ghosts, and Battlefield 4.
Sprint across a flowered field and embrace PC Gamer Podcast 365 - Ghost Grenade Dad.
Black Mesa: Source, the free high-def remake of Valve's first-person shooter classic Half-Life, is a clear example of how awesome the PC gaming/modding community is. For no reason other than they wanted to, the team behind Black Mesa painstakingly rebuilt Half-Life inside the Source engine, prettied up all the art, and released the result for free. On Tuesday - Half-Life’s fifteenth birthday - Black Mesa received permission from Valve to be sold on Steam.
When we last left space opera The Mandate, this ambitious indie game was burning through its Kickstarter campaign toward a half-million dollar funding goal. To help climb that summit, developer Perihelion Interactive has released a new trailer starring David Bradley as the grizzled high admiral.
The more we hear about The Elder Scrolls Online, the more massive it sounds. But we're also getting more insight into how the MMORPG will balance the experience of navigating its ambitiously designed world. Campaigns, the possibly months-long battles between the game's three alliances for control of Cyrodiil, will feature "soft caps" on player participation, according to a new Ask Us Anything with ESO developers.
Sometimes even the perfect siege gets a false start. Lord of the Rings Online: Helm's Deep, a new expansion to the Tolkienesque MMORPG, was supposed to go live today. But thanks to a power outage at the game's data center, the release has been delayed until Wednesday, according to an update to developer Turbine's Facebook page.
Saxxy. It's a good word to say. Try it out for size. Repeat it, over and over, until your mouth goes numb and your friends and co-workers have long since abandoned you. As well as being an enjoyable utterance, it's also the title of Valve's now annual film-making awards. This year, the competition is exclusively based around the Source Filmmaker tool. Luckily, the versatile animation suite has been out long enough that we're in for some exceptional shorts. For instance, this excellent film about a helpful mini-Pyro.
Typical politicians. They promise the moon on a stick, but do they ever deliver? Well yes, in this case. As part of the weird Guild Wars 2 voting event held a few months ago, the winning candidate's election promises have formed the basis of next week's update: Fractured. It's a new Fractals of the Mists event, set during the explosion of Metrica Province's Thaumanova Reactor. Fractured also continues the Nightmare story chain, that formed the basis of the last two updates.
Football Manager makes sense to me again. The series had slowly driven me away as it crammed more detail into its already stat-heavy simulation of football. I never seemed to be able to tell what information mattered, and which decisions were the cause of my various triumphs and failures.
Classic Mode changed that. Introduced last year, it strips back the game to something that, on the surface, resembles Championship Manager from ten years ago, but is underpinned by the same rich simulation that drives the main game. The mode returns in Football Manager 2014, and it’s still my favourite way to play the game. This release doesn’t have any equivalent flagship feature, but the hundreds of changes it does make are important. Most notable for fans of modern football is the inclusion of expanded player roles, and a tactics system that replaces sliders with the language of real football tacticians. That means being able to deploy players in the midfield as a trequartista, a false nine or an enganche.
Today the twentieth free expansion to Eve Online goes live. There are tweaks and balances, new units and changes to the interface, but when you give something a name that means 'a point of no return' and then, in case anyone missed that, add the tag line "There's no turning back" there's cause for a closer look.
"Rubicon is an important moment in Eve. It's the beginning of a vision we articulated at Fanfest in Reykjavik earlier this year - the idea of going forth and colonising space," CCP's chief marketing officer David Reid tells me. "It continues this idea here of giving the players more and more control over the Eve universe. Our designers aren't the gods of the Eve universe, they're the janitors. We build tools, we clean up messes, we keep the lights on and we allow the players to go be the stars and figure out how they want to do things."
As the sixth game in the X series, X Rebirth continues the long and unfortunate tradition of being a bit broken at release. So much so that Egosoft's director Bernd Lehahn took to their forums to apologise for the current technical problems being faced by the game's owners. In a post to the community, he addresses some of the current issues, while laying out a basic roadmap for the game's future updates.
The most notable thing about this video for Battlefield 4's Second Assault DLC is just how good DICE are at saying "Levolution" without openly weeping. That must have taken some serious media training. Either side of that moment, you get to hear BF4 executive producer Patrick Bach explaining what the expansion will add, including its four "fan-favourite" maps, new vehicles and weapons, and a new Capture the Flag mode.
Valve recently announced Steam Dev Days, a two-day developer only conference designed to let game creationists "meet in a relaxed, off the record environment". Naturally topics will run the expected gamut of weird Steam projects, with sessions covering everything from the Workshop, the in-game economies of TF2 and Dota 2, the future of Steam Machines, and the production of Gabe Newell's Power Owl. But also listed on the conference's sessions page is a talk titled "What VR Could, Should, and Almost Certainly Will Be within Two Years," the brief of which reveals the existence of a Valve-assembled VR prototype.
Previously, I'd assumed Call of Duty: Ghosts' heavy RAM requirement was there because loading a nice dog was a memory intensive procedure. Either that's not the case or canine computer tech is becoming increasingly advanced, because a new multiplayer patch has lowered the game's 6GB RAM restriction. Now you'll only need 4GB of memory juice to access the multiplayer portion, which should naturally mean more dogs chewing on more throats. Hooray?
Sony’s PlayStation 4 is the first of the new console generation to find its way into gaming hands. That’s great for console gamers, but probably doesn’t do much for PC gamers. What will benefit us, as we sail past the newest console’s resolutions on our way to 4K?
There’s nothing PC gamers love quite as much as a good rumor. We had a bunch of Fallout 4 speculation crop up over the weekend, and some doomsayers are claiming the end of the world will be brought about by a freakishly powerful rig cobbled together by mad scientists. Now the skies of Star Citizen are falling because someone spotted a PlayStation 4 dev kit in a picture posted by the developers. Taking to the community forums, creator Chris Roberts addressed rumors that Star Citizen would be dumbed down for console release—and destroyed them.
How real is real anyway? Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey thinks the best solution to motion sickness problems when using a virtual reality headset might be rethinking how movement is simulated in all games, not just those that plan on exploiting the new technology.
I don't know if you heard, but we built a ridiculous computer. The first thing we fired up on it was Arma 3, a fitting inaugural test of our four GTX Titans. Here's the result, captured in first-person and with help from Arma 3's Splendid Camera.
Nothing delights us more than building a nice computer. Except for, well, building an irresponsibly powerful one. Today we'd like you to meet the Large Pixel Collider, the most inspiring, dangerous, and liver-damagingly potent PC we've ever built.
You may remember Sui Generis as the Kickstartered RPG that promised weighty battles and impressive, high-fidelity physics. If not, the latest pre-alpha video will get you up to speed. It's twelve minutes of people being thwacked, inventory being managed, and walks being taken. While not all of those things are as exciting as the others, you also get to see someone tripping over a chair.
Internet. Internet never changes. Which is why, once again, we're having to cross the irradiated wasteland of rumour and speculation. There's a chance - remote though it may be - that Bethesda are readying the broadcast signal and preparing to announce Fallout 4 to whichever isolated pockets of humanity care to listen. Of course, there's also a chance that this is nothing, and that Fallout fans will be left to starve on a diet of broken, empty dreams. It's how they would want to go.