There's something eerily fitting about the first few moments of this AC4 DLC trailer, as ex-slave Adewale talks about freedom while a YouTube annotation informs you of the "#AC4blackflag" Twitter hashtag. It speaks to the dichotomy at the heart of the series, in which well-researched recreations of history clash against past-future wizards, technomagic video games, and Nolan North. Oh, and there's stabbing too.
Given that Starbound has both a grappling hook and the ability to create a cutesy rendition of the Morrowind theme, you'd be forgiven for thinking that it's already finished. But no, those are just the most important features of a long and winding development road. In a new post on the game's official site, designer Finn "Tiy" Brice has outlined some of the things planned for future updates.
We last checked in with Star Citizen three weeks ago, and so presumably the unstoppable crowdfunding juggernaut has made some serious money since then. Well, yes - multiple millions, in fact - but for once that's not what this news is about. The ambitious space-'em-ups roadmap had planned for the release of a dogfighting module at the end of this month, giving backers a taste of the game's combat. In an address to the community, Chris Roberts has now revealed that the launch is being delayed by a couple of months.
Maybe you've spent the last couple of years Doing the Dotes*. You've gained an almost scarily obsessive knowledge on the many intricacies of Valve's wizard-'em-up; and taken QoP to the top, Axe to the max, and Puck to... er, no. For all your successes, spare a thought for those on the wrong end of the queueing system that grants access to the game. Those who've never before had a chance to experience the thrill of sub-grouting a megascamp with a three-man sagwidget**. At least, they haven't until now, as the digital gatekeeper formerly restricting access to the client has today been retired. Dota 2 is available to all.
If all goes well, urban survival MMO Nether will get an update on Steam early access this Wednesday, December 18, with several features that will significantly impact gameplay. The new features included are among the first selected by Phosphor Games Studio, based on feedback from players participating in the early access beta.
Subnautica, the new project revealed today by Natural Selection 2 developer Unknown Worlds Entertainment, has us looking below the surface. With an open-world ocean as its metaphorical sandbox, Subnautica sounds like an exploration experience that might not fit comfortably into some of the neat little categories we use so often when talking about games.
An auction to sell off the assets of shuttered game developer 38 Studios found no buyers for either its unfinished MMO—known as Project Copernicus—or the rights to RPG Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, according to a report in the Providence Journal. The Wednesday auction was part of an ongoing effort to recover funds following the bankruptcy and closure of the Rhode Island developer in 2012.
The free-to-play MechWarrior Online announced that players are now able to pre-purchase mechs from its upcoming Clan Collection, which will be released June 17. Prices start at $30 for the standard mech collections—going up to $240—and may include different variants, badges and custom titles, premium time, concept art, and other unique content.
DayZ's standalone version, the follow-up to the popular Arma 2 mod, is out now on Steam early access for $30. Unfortunately, DayZ creator Dean Hall was notified at the last minute that the launch trailer (below) that Steam pulled his trailer "due to censorship," but you can still watch it thanks to YouTube.
I've not much sympathy for "things were better in the old days" reminiscing. For instance, those who prefer the twitch action of 'old-school' shooters still have valid options for their acrobatic rocket-spam. Far better then, are those retro-pastiche projects that filter the philosophy of nostalgia through something entirely more ridiculous. Take Half-Life 2: Deathmatch mod Jaykin' Bacon 3. As you'll see in this trailer, its Instagib mode will let you play a flying Solid Snake shooting his deadly electrified finger gun.
When the looming grasp of Christmas becomes too much to bear, you can simply retreat to the comforting shelter of one of gaming's many alternative holidays. If World of Warcraft is your preferred medium of goodwill escapism, that event is Winter Veil, and it begins today. Through it you can beat up bosses for festive hats, take part in a variety of themed activities, or again rescue the again kidnapped Metzen the Reindeer. Come on Blizzard, you really need to keep a tighter rein on that guy.
When Battlefield 4 released, a few of us at PCG Towers decided to enlist into its chaotic and crumbling servers in search of enjoyable shooty man times. Trying out the Defuse game mode, we quickly encountered a bug that would periodically kick the entire squad into Spectator mode. We played two rounds like this - temporarily Quantum Leaping into other players, then being kicked back to our body for a brief period of trying to complete the objective.
It was probably the most striking, weird and memorable thing that's happened to me in a first-person shooter for some time. So, while partially relieved that the game continues to be fixed, it's also with a slight trace of sadness that I report today's massive 900 MB patch, which - alongside a selection of other bugs and problems - fixes that particular surreal glitch.
It's justifiably our mod of the week and, after an intense week-long beta period, it's set to officially release in just a few short hours. One lone figure brought chaos and destruction to the island of Panau, but Just Cause 2 Multiplayer brings exponentially more. It gives players the chance to start events, compete in races, or just hang out in the airport for five seconds before being killed. The mod's launch trailer rounds up some of the many available actions.
Valve recently sent out their prototype Steam Machines to a select few lucky Steam users. As can only be expected by PC enthusiasts, the first thing some of those testers did was go digging inside their new toy. Some even went as far as filming the whole experience, putting it online for other PC enthusiasts to salivate over. Sit down and get ready for some exquisitely managed cables and finely moulded plastic.
You're parachuting over the island of Panau, as you've done countless times before. This time, however, you're not alone: the sky is full of chutes. Planes streak by, wildly firing at each other, while a crowd of people with grappling hooks all try to hijack the same helicopter. On the ground, two dozen limousines careen past in the midst of a race around an airport. The Just Cause 2 Multiplayer Mod doesn't boast a server of 24 or 36 players, but hundreds, potentially thousands, all in the same game at once. Panau, already a ridiculous place, just got truly nuts.
Zoom. Wizards. Zoooom. Clothes. Zoooooooom. Sheep. What else is lurking inside this week's roundup of the best free games? It's time to go deeper. Zooooooooooooooooooom. How about a robot-based shoot-'em-up, a camera-based shoot-'em-up, and an isometric mix of Syndicate and Deus Ex? That'll do nicely – now how do you make this camera zoom out?
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is not just a candidate for the best/worst-named game of all time - it's also a curious, OTT offshoot of Konami's famous sneak-'em-up series, made by the masters of fast-paced action titles, Platinum Games. A PC version was announced several months ago, but since then things have been unusually quiet for ridiculously outfitted cyborg ninja Raiden. UNTIL NOW. Konami have revealed on their official podcast, KP Alert!, that the port is in its "final stages" and coming "sooner than you might imagine". More than that, "you'll be seeing it pop up on Steam any day now". To paraphrase one of Metal Gear's stupid guards, "!"
Eagle-eyed readers (and, indeed, human-eyed eagles) may have noticed that Wasteland 2's beta version was released to Kickstarter backers yesterday. There was much rejoicing among those who stumped up to fund the game, because Wasteland 2. But what about the rest of us? When do we get to click and talk and shoot our way across inXile's scorpion-infested post-apocalyptic wasteland? Right now, in fact - the game is now on Steam Early Access for your consideration.
Every week, Richard Cobbett rolls the dice to bring you an obscure slice of gaming history, from lost gems to weapons grade atrocities. This week, it's time for another trip to our very own City 17; a shooter from somewhere around Russia whose alien invasion seems... just a little familiar.
I think the main character is called "Jim Fail". There aren't any intro subtitles. I may just be mishearing. But I really hope not, because a world with an action hero called Jim Fail is one that I want to live in. Not his specific world, obviously. This one. Where we can just sit and giggle at the idea of a hero called Jim Fail. Better make it quick though, because the aliens on his trail have no sense of humour.
Or much in the way of sense, for that matter. But they do know how to rock Dolce Gabbana.
A few days ago, a stranger on Twitter half-jokingly informed me I should add "Starbound PR" to my list of credentials. I protested, of course, but the truth of the matter is that I've probably spent more time evangelizing Chucklefish's procedurally generated, sci-fi sandbox exploratory thing than I have championing Dota 2. Which is a little worrying because DotA is the game I spent a decade playing.