Three Lane Highway: what tournament play has taught me about Dota 2

Chris Thursten at

Three Lane Highway is Chris' column about Dota 2.

You're always learning, whether or not it feels like it. I've had games of Dota where I've felt like I've learned nothing at all, where my mistakes have been obvious to me (and probably to everybody else involved) and my victories have been conducted against enemies too busy screaming at each other or eating paint to make it mean anything. There is always, however, a way to learn.

Oculus Rift consumer model reported to be releasing in 'beta' next summer

Phil Savage at

I'd like to issue a formal apology on behalf of everyone who keeps going on about the Oculus Rift. Sorry. It's just that the current development kits are filled with the promise of exciting escapism—even if it is to some deeply strange places. Luckily for everyone not yet prepared to deal with the DK2's current issues, news has emerged of the planned release window of the long-awaited consumer edition.


Uncanny Valley is a creepy 2D horror game, has a demo out right now

Phil Savage at

As a massive coward, I went into Uncanny Valley with deliberately sub-optimal conditions. Light glared through my window. Sound was left to wander aimlessly from my speakers. Most importantly, puppy gifs were positioned prominently on my second monitor. Despite all this, it still elicited a fright or two–the game's creepy atmosphere being interspersed with some effective scares. You can try it out, too, as its developers have released a demo ahead of the full release later this year.


Payday 2: Hotline Miami DLC announced

Phil Savage at

Overkill has announced a Hotline Miami DLC update for Payday 2, being created in collaboration with the indie murder-'em-up's developer Dennaton Games. There's little to go on, besides a new live-action trailer. How the top-down jazz slaughter of Hotline Miami will work with the co-operative heists of Payday 2 isn't clear. Hopefully the connection will run deeper than some animal masks and an amazing soundtrack.


Kojima teases Metal Gear Collection 2014, here's why I think it's coming to PC

Phil Savage at

Here's a tasty titbit from Kojima, master of teases. A few hours ago he tweeted a picture of a screen displaying the words "Metal Gear Collection 2014," stating, "reading the script for TGS stage show." That is, so far, all we know—but by gosh, I am going to speculate over those four words. For instance, could a new MGS collection signal the appearance of the series' back catalogue onto PC? I think it might.


Resident Evil Revelations 2 will be an episodic release; first trailer revealed

Phil Savage at

An unexpected revelation: Resident Evil Revelations 2 will be released episodically. The sequel to the 3DS Resi—later ported to PC—will arrive in four weekly episodes. If you follow that announcement through to its logical conclusions, we are going to be in for some ridiculous cliff-hangers.


LA Cops gameplay video — Early Access impressions

Tyler Wilde at

LA Cops is a game with a badass title. It should probably just be the title of every game. LA Cops: Inquisition? I'd play that. Plus, the trailer made me think of Hotline Miami, which was more than enough to get me to download it and give it a shot. It's in Early Access, and the current version is a small part of its future whole, but I recorded my impressions of a couple levels for a quick look at what's there now.


Alien: Isolation has gone gold, so here are the system requirements

Shaun Prescott at

Never fear, because Alien: Isolation is finished and ready to ship next month. Actually, do fear, because that's the point of the game I guess. In case you're frightened that your PC will lack the power to run Creative Assembly's new survival horror, take a look at the system requirements below.


Atari looks to reboot more classic games in the future

Andy Chalk at

Atari announced last month that it is "rebooting" Alone in the Dark and Haunted House. Both games are very old—Haunted House came out in 1982, while Alone in the Dark is from '92—and so obviously a good bit of work is going to be required to make them relevant to modern gamers. Even so, it sounds like other games in Atari's extensive catalog will be given similar overhauls in the future.


Mechwarrior Online rights returned to Piranha Games, "more efficient development" promised

Andy Chalk at

Mechwarrior Online scored a very respectable score of 83 in our October 2013 review, but it obviously hasn't been entirely sunshine and lollipops since then. Fans have complained loud and long about missing features, delays and a glacial pace of development that has left major aspects of the game in an incomplete state. But Piranha Games President Russ Bullock recently announced that publisher Infinite Games is no longer involved with the project, which he said has already increased the pace of the game's development.

League of Legends event introduces new Ascension mode and desert map

Wes Fenlon at

Last week, we wrote that Riot Games was throwing out the lore League of Legends has built up over the past five years and replacing it with something new. Now we know what that something is, or at least what’s coming first in LoL’s rebooted fiction: a gameplay event tied to the desert empire of Shurima, which includes the launch of a new champion named Azir and a new game mode called Ascension.


Notch approached Microsoft about rumored Mojang buyout, says Bloomberg

Andy Chalk at

Yesterday's all-but-unbelievable rumor is today's "looking like it might actually be so," as reports that Minecraft studio Mojang is on the verge of being acquired by Microsoft continue to surface. Even more interesting, the word on the street is that the idea of the buyout came not from Microsoft, but from Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson himself.


Assassin's Creed Unity "Heist" trailer shows off co-op gameplay in the tunnels of the Hôtel-Dieu

Andy Chalk at

Ubisoft has dropped a new Assassin's Creed Unity co-op gameplay trailer, in which a pair of the Brotherhood's finest undertake a Heist Mission in the tunnels beneath the oldest hospital in Paris.


FIFA 15 demo out now, teaches you bizarre celebrations

Phil Savage at

EA has released a demo for FIFA 15, ahead of the game's launch in two weeks' time. It's notable, because it's the first chance PC gamers will have to try the series' new Ignite engine—which previously only featured in the current-gen console versions of FIFA 14. With it, we'll have access to some pretty intense emotions. Also, for some reason, there's a new video explaining how to bother flags.


Endless Legend to leave early access next week

Phil Savage at

Endless Legend is Amplitude's fantasy follow up to Endless Space—replacing the surreal beauty of a tactically significant vacuum with vibrant terrain-filled hexagons. Amplitude are still writing this newest Legend, but they're almost finished. They've now announced that, as of September 18th, it will leave Steam Early Access for an official release.


Bundle Stars' new bundle offers all FEAR games for cheap

Phil Savage at

FEAR, (also known as First Encounter Assault Recon, also known as Jump-Kick Simulator 2005,) is the subject of a new bundle. For the next 17 days, you can cheaply acquire Fear, its expansions, Fear 2, its DLC pack, and F3AR, (also known as First, Er, Third Assault Recon? Also known as No Seriously, Why Is There A Three There? It Hurts To Look At It.)


Guild Wars 2's September Feature Pack now live, draws criticism from community

Phil Savage at

The long-teased September Feature Pack is now live in Guild Wars 2. What does it contain? Features! It's packed full of them. More specifically, it contains a selection of updates designed to overhaul everything from trading to achievements, and from levelling to class balance. But already, some of these changes are drawing derision from the game's community.


Double Fine's Hack 'n' Slash leaves early access, makes source code available

Phil Savage at

Double Fine have hacked into the very fabric of the universe, and changed reality's listing for Hack 'n' Slash from beta to fully released. That's actually not as hard as it sounds. You just tell people it's happened. In addition to finishing the hacking-based adventure's campaign, Double Fine are also shipping the game with its source code—giving the community extreme flexibility in their Steam Workshop creations.


PC owners more likely to wait for price drops before purchasing, according to NPD

Shaun Prescott at

We all talk in hushed tones about our backlog, and we all feel that weirdly conflicted emotion, somewhere between glee and horror, when the Steam sale commences. So it's no surprise that a new NPD study has discovered that 50 per cent of US PC gamers wait for discounts or price drops before purchasing.


Microsoft reportedly in talks to buy Minecraft studio Mojang

Andy Chalk at

In what may be the most unexpected rumor of the year, Microsoft is reportedly close to completing a deal that will see it acquire Mojang AB, better known as the studio that makes Minecraft.