In a nod to its fans, indie strategy game Space Hulk has released a new—and free—three-mission campaign as part of its latest patch which went live today. The appropriately titled Messenger of Purgatory campaign surfaces as part of update 1.2, which also addresses the game's optimization, visuals, and a variety of other improvements, according to its official changelog.
Reinstall invites you to join us in revisiting classics of PC gaming days gone by. This week, we take to the battlefield with not just one, but A FEW mechs in MechCommander.
Time to roll the dice. I’m replaying the third mission of MechCommander, a few giant robot steps away from a big moment: my first run-in with a MadCat. If I play things right, I can bag it. One problem: I’m totally outmatched. My four-man rookie squad is piloting wiry light mechs (Commandos and Firestarters); essentially, I’m about to send a gaggle of Chevy Cavaliers against a Ferrari.
The MadCat’s iconic frame emerges from the fog of war, its egg-shaped cockpit perched atop raptor legs, shouldering twin blocks of long-range missile racks. I’ve got to make a call: do I sprint to the extraction point and attempt to complete the mission without a fight? Do I use the nuclear option and zap the rows of gas tanks near the MadCat for a sure kill—but with no chance of salvaging it? Or do I fight it head-on, and maybe—if I range correctly, kite it away from my damaged scout mech, and find enough finesse—knock the beast down without killing it, adding it to my squad and taking it into mission four as a playable prize?
The thing about games is that sometimes they lock up when loading into battle with DirectX 9, or report the wrong per-frame time in the Graphics Benchmark frame rate display. Honestly, I don't know why we put up with them. Actually, wait, it's because they're brilliant. Even better, they can be fixed. Total War: Rome 2's third patch, announced last week, is now live, and offers technical and performance fixes, along with balance changes, and improvements to usability and the general game.
The republic of Creative Assembly continue to work on the list of complaints presented to them by agitated gamers after the launch of Total War: Rome 2. Much like last time, Patch 3 makes changes throughout the game, focusing on key weaknesses in the formation, including performance and AI tweaks. CA have also focused fire on multiplayer, and claim to have significantly improved the online campaign speed, which will now be determined by the slowest player's machine. Patch 3 is currently in beta, and can be applied through the game's Steam properties menu. A general release should come later this week. You can see the full changelist inside.
Mode 7 Games, creators of our Strategy Game of the Year in 2011, share an update on their progress with Frozen Endzone.
Welcome to the first in the series of this behind-the-scenes look at Frozen Endzone. Although it’s our third game, Endzone feels a lot like a difficult second album. Our previous title Frozen Synapse had an amazing critical reception, winning awards and exceeding all of our expectations. Following something like that that is a pretty torturous soul-searching process as you try to find the needle of an intelligent decision in the haystack of random gibbering that accumulates in 4 years of making a single game.
Friends! Romans! PC gamers! Want a free copy of Total War: Rome II—and a beefy new gaming PC to play it on? We're giving away a Digital Storm Bolt PC and a copy of Creative Assembly's newest strategy game to one lucky reader.
Total War: Rome 2 came out last week, but though it was just short of greatness, it has also had a bit of a rough launch. Some players have been unable to login and others are reporting game-crashing bugs. Now Total War creative director Mike Simpson has posted to the game's forums to apologize and lay out the plan for the next few weeks.
Creative Assembly have announced the update and support strategy for their latest Total War, and, like the city it's based on, revealed that Rome II won't be patched in a day. The developers plan to release fixes for the game "on a weekly basis in the immediate future", targeting their updates based on player feedback, as they configure and tune the release post-launch.
Et tu, CA? In a tradition dating back to roughly 44 BC, the developers of Total War: Rome 2 are celebrating the launch of their game with a trailer. If you can tear your eyes away from the sight of Steam downloading, unlocking, or perhaps even playing their latest strategy lasagne*, spare some time for a CGI retelling of ancient history. As with all of history, everybody dies.
The Roman senate will weep for Crassipes. They'll talk proudly of how the great general threw himself against the walls of Massalia. They'll talk of how he burned the gates and took the central square, and how a dozen Averni javelins ended his illustrious command of Legio I Italica there. But will they talk of the fleet barely a mile away that sat still and watched the great man lemming his way into the history books? Do they realise that the patriot they adored was sent intentionally to his death? I wonder what that would do if they knew that the fate of Crassipes and all the armies and settlements of Rome were not beholden to the gods, but to one bearded games journalist moving them like pawns on a vast playing board.
What a beautiful board it is - an intricate papier mache caricature of Europe, decorated with landmarks, rivers and exaggerated topography. Total War has come a long way from the papery maps of Shogun, but its form is the same. You must guide your chosen nation to glory by managing cities, conducting diplomacy, plotting espionage and moving armies to conquer new settlements. When your armies meet resistance, you dive into a real-time battle and command the troops personally.
Don't worry, you can unclench your buttocks. As a video game made in 2013, Total War: Rome 2 will have paid-for DLC, but today Creative Assembly have confirmed that their cavalcade of post-release content isn't all destined to end life as a line on your bank statement. Alongside the additional purchases, the developers are planning to sprinkle in some free content updates and support.
Space is endless. We knew that much, but it turns out legends are endless as well. Or rather, one Legend in particular, and probably not the one where Tom Cruise shares a curry with a guy named Tim (as is my understanding of the film). Not content with just one 4X strategy game, the Endless Space developers are back at it again, this time using those 4 Xs (eXplore, eXploit, eXpand and eXtreme) in a fantasy setting, with no spaceships or anything. You can see some hexy screenshots after the break.
Kalypso have announced Tropico 5, the next game in the light-hearted banana republic dictatorship simulation series. Where Tropico 4 drew slight criticism for being a marginal improvement over its predecessor, the sequel's plans are more wide-ranging. The game will feature multiple eras, with players taking El Presidente from the colonial 19th century, through to the future. Not that you'd know it from the announcement trailer, which is more concerned with showing the great dictator's creepy fascination with globes.
As good as Europa Universalis IV is, if you're new to Paradox's information dense strategy games, you may be put off by the continued bombardment of stats and figures. And there's little more demoralising for a nation's army than being forced to wait around while there leader learns who they're supposed to be attacking. Understanding the benefit of patiently explaining their game, Paradox have released a series of tutorials meant to get you up to speed.
Skyward Collapse is a game of village building, civilian nurturing, and war quashing, as you attempt to keep aggressive factions alive by arming them just enough that they can't wipe each other out. Aiding you in this were mythological creatures; the two factions balanced by the protective (and occasionally murderous) nature of Greek and Norse beasties. Now developer Arcen Games want to not so much tip the scales, as knock them over completely - with a third, Japanese faction, to be introduced in the upcoming first expansion: Nihon no Mura.
Countries, eh? With their histories, social philosophies and sense of national pride. It's sickening, really. Luckily, Europa Universalis IV lets you beat up countries, by picking bigger, meaner countries to play as. And Paradox have rather kindly extended this opportunity to all, by releasing a demo ahead of the game's release next week. That's assuming you can work out what all the buttons do.
Paradox's in-house strategies are known for their size and complexity. Their official announcements about release times and demo plans, however? Those can be unceremoniously sparse. The latest Europa Universalis 4 dev update, aptly titled "a very small development diary", confirms the game's planned launch time, and teases the possibility of a pre-release demo.
The Bureau is a game about an alien invasion, and not a sort of chest of drawers, so it makes sense that this fresh load of gameplay footage would focus on killing aliens and ordering teammates about, rather than storing stuff in a convenient yet pricey piece of furniture. There are nine-and-a-bit minutes of killy, sprinty, 60sy action below, taken (courtesy of VG247) from the opening mission of the game.
Citadels offers up a provocative question: Do you defend king and country or join the men who want to destroy it all? The single-player RTS set in the world of Arthurian knights was launched yesterday by Slovakian studio Games Distillery and promises a look at both sides of the legend, according to a press release from publisher bitComposer Games.
Rome wasn't built in a day, as slow people are fond of saying - no it took, like, at least a week. Creative Assembly seem to be taking even longer with Total War: Rome 2, their latest enormo-strategy title which is set - if my history is correct - in the late 1970s. To make the wait more bearable, the devs have started their own Let's Play series, this latest entry showing off the game's campaign mode. It's a pleasantly in-depth video, detailing the different starting choices and factions, before- cor, look at that gorgeous world map.