strategy

Gratuitous Space Battles 2 trailer proves that intergalactic destruction can be beautiful

Shaun Prescott at

Who said large scale interplanetary destruction can't be beautiful? Probably most sensible people actually, but when the question applies to Gratuitous Space Battles 2 the answer is "yes, it can be beautiful". The trailer above is a short teaser concisely outlining what the game is and what it does. Since we already know most of this information, it's probably best to focus on the beautiful, beautiful destruction.


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 8

Wes Fenlon at

In episode 8 of PC Gamer's Dwarf Fortress Let's Play, the dwarves have to fight to defend their fortress! Wes and Will also get to work on an office, making cheese, and building a nest box for their geese.


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 7

Wes Fenlon at

In episode 7 of PC Gamer's Dwarf Fortress Let's Play, the dwarves finally get around to fishing! Wes builds a fishery, expands his fortress, and learns about drawbridges and levers.


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 6

Wes Fenlon at

In episode 6 of PC Gamer's Dwarf Fortress Let's Play, Wes and Will begin to suspect that their leader Sibrek is a bit of a bum. Also, they learn all about cooking and brewing!


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 5

Wes Fenlon at

In episode 5 of PC Gamer's Dwarf Fortress Let's Play, Wes and Will discuss mermen and learn all about trading when the first caravan arrives arrives at their fortress. Turns out, trading involves a lot of menus.


Wargame: Red Dragon gets free DLC, adds "full-length story campaign" set in the early 90s

Tom Sykes at

Wargame: Red Dragon is set in an alternate 1980s where everyone's a bit more warry and Twin Peaks was probably never invented. It sounds, obviously, like a bit of a horrible place, but one ripe for real-time strategy gaming. Eugen Systems clearly agree, as they've just expanded their wargame with a new, free chunk of downloadable content. The Second Korean War updates the action to 1992, adding "12 new units and an additional full-length story campaign".


Total War: Rome II Emperor Edition announced, will be a free upgrade for existing owners

Andy Chalk at

Total War: Rome II was, by our estimation, a very good game, and the coming release of the "Emperor Edition" looks set to make it even better. It will include all the free content that's been released for the game so far, plus additional features and an all-new campaign based on the Second Triumvirate War—and if you already own Total War: Rome II, it won't cost you a dime.


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 4

Wes Fenlon at

In episode 4 of PC Gamer's Dwarf Fortress Let's Play, Wes builds a kitchen, expands his underground fortress, and starts a farm!


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 3

Wes Fenlon at

In episode three of our Dwarf Fortress Let’s Play, Wes learns all about building and using workshops, assigning stockpiles, and giving dwarves their own bedrooms. Even dwarves need their privacy!


Age of Wonders 3 expansion Golden Realms adds halflings and new campaign

Tom Sykes at

Richard Cobbett used words such as "immediately engaging" and "is" to describe Age of Wonders III in his review, so the news that it will shortly receive an expansion is almost definitely a Good Thing. Golden Reams is its name, and "bucket loads of new content" is its game, including the hobbity return of the Halfling race. Triumph announced the expansion with a ginormous video describing the new stuff, but if you'd rather hear about it in text form, I have you covered there too.


Civilization: Beyond Earth gameplay video takes a detailed look at building an effective colony

Andy Chalk at

Odds are you've already made up your mind about whether Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth is something you want to sink hundreds of hours of your life into. But if you're on the fence, this lengthy gameplay video recorded during the August 21 Firaxis livestream might prove helpful.


Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth preorder bonuses takes inspiration from the cosmos

Andy Chalk at

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth is now up for preordering on Steam, and as you might expect that means preorder bonuses. And the Exoplanets Map pack is actually kind of cool: It's a collection of six custom maps inspired by real-world exoplanets.

A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 2

Wes Fenlon at

In episode two of our Dwarf Fortress Let’s Play, Wes and Will talk through the early steps of building a fortress: setting animals out for grazing, chopping down trees, and digging underground. A fortress is born!


A newbie plays Dwarf Fortress: Ep. 1

Wes Fenlon at

In early July 2014, Dwarf Fortress received its first major update in two years. We wrote about why now is the time to get into the game with our guide Into the deep. Reading about all the new features in Dwarf Fortress 2014 gave me the bug: I'm determined to learn how to run a fortress and how to navigate Dwarf Fortress' labyrinthine menus. But I'm not embarking alone. I pulled in PC Gamer video producer (and DF veteran) Will Chesney to teach me the ways of Dwarf Fortress' bloody world.

This is episode one of our Dwarf Fortress Let's Play. It's aimed at newcomers like me who want to learn the game. As we play, we'll talk through the complex process of beginning a fortress, controlling our dwarves, and learning new mechanics. It may all end in blood and tragedy, but at least we'll learn something along the way. Look for new episodes of our series every Tuesday and Thursday. Now: let's strike the Earth!


Space Hulk: Ascension Edition announced, a standalone follow-up to last year's strategy game

Tom Sykes at

You can never have too many Space Hulks. If one of them is yer actual Hulk Hogan fighting bad guys on Mir, all the better, but for now we'll have to stick to titles based on Games Workshop's meaty sci-fi boardgame instead. Joining last year's Space Hulk, and some mystery future year's Space Hulk: Deathwing, is Full Control's standaloneapology for their poorly received strategy game of last year. Space Hulk Ascension Edition is an expansiony sequely do-over type thing that adds RPG elements and Ultramarines, beefy warriors who like long walks by the sea, killing, and the colour blue.


Clockwork Empires hits Steam Early Access with handy new "Staving Off Starvation" trailer

Andy Chalk at

It's not easy being a pseudo-Victorian colonist on the Clockwork Empires frontier, especially when that frontier is built upon a nest of Lovecraftian horrors. Even something as simple as keeping yourself properly fed can be a tremendously complex and taxing effort. Fortunately, the Prudent Bureaucrat's Guide to Colonization is here to help you, and those around you, avoid the specter of starvation.


Dungeons 2 goes where no dungeon management sim has been before: outside

Tom Sykes at

With EA's free-to-play mobile Dungeon Keeper reboot proving particularly monstrous, there's more than enough room in this world for Realmforge Studios and Kalypso's Dungeons series, even if the first one wasn't completely up to snuff. Seeing as it's International Announcement Day in the world of computer games, Kalypso have just announced a sequel. Dungeons 2 might seem like an apposite name, but this one will allow you to extend your reach to the filthy, human-filled overworld. What do you call a dungeon management sim not set wholly in a dungeon? It's a question worthy of Bishop Berkeley.


The Settlers: Kingdoms of Anteria is half city builder, half...co-op action RPG?

Tom Sykes at

Ah, so this is what Ubisoft meant when they said they were reinventing The Settlers series with Kingdoms of Anteria. They meant "it's kind of an action RPG now", but also "it's still a city building strategy game", and "not to get picky, but we prefer the term 'Action RTS'". While I try to unpack what 'Action RTS' means, here are some unSettling facts: Anteria will feature "persistent city building", four-player co-op, loot and bosses, and those are certainly words you don't see together very often.


Here's when Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas' Military Quarter opens tonight

Andy Chalk at

Right on schedule, the Curse of Naxxramas Military Quarter is on the cusp of opening up to all. Blizzard has announced the launch times for the next chunk of Hearthstone content, so we know when each region will get the update.


Pixel Boost: Sid Meier's Pirates!

Wes Fenlon at

Twice a month, Pixel Boost guides you through the hacks, tricks, and mods you'll need to run a classic PC game on Windows 7/8. Each guide comes with a free side of hi-res screenshots from the LPC celebrating the graphics of PC gaming's past. This week: Yarr!.

First, there were pirates, the sea dogs of the the 17th century Caribbean. Then there were Pirates!, who were very similar, except they lived inside computers like the Commodore 64 and Apple II and were created by Sid Meier in 1987. Finally, there are 2004's Pirates!, who sail the Caribbean as salty 3D scalawags instead of tiny blocky pixel sprites. Pirates, Pirates! and 3D Pirates! all do mostly the same things--plunder booty, trade stolen goods, and swordfight with Spanish sailors. 2013's Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag may have the more exciting swordfighting, but the greatest piracy simulation of them all is still 2004's Sid Meier's Pirates!. Meier's classic blend of fun minigames and strategy hasn't been replicated in a pirate game since, but that's okay—Pirates! still runs just fine on modern Windows, and at high resolution, too.