Released yesterday to commemorate the start of QuakeCon 2014, the Quake 4 mod False Dawn is a non-linear, multiple-goal mission with up-to-date graphics, overhauled health and damage systems and even a story that actually has some meat on the bone.
Skywind, as we've mentioned a few times previously, is a recreation of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind using the engine that powers the much newer and more visually impressive Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It will also include roughly 300 to 400 hours of voice acting, and the team behind it could use some help getting it all squared away.
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 4K screenshots from the LPC celebrating the graphics of PC gaming's past. This week: the Nameless One lives (and dies) again.
Obsidian Entertainment's Pillars of Eternity is, essentially, the reincarnation of late-90s Infinity Engine RPGs. Obsidian has captured the look of isometric cRPGs of the early 2000s as we remember them, and nothing drives that point home like playing Planescape: Torment today. It's as well-written and immense as you remember, but you may have to squint to read the UI or find your way around the environment. It takes some work to run Infinity Engine games on modern PCs, but thanks to the amazing fan community, there are great resources for these games more than a decade alter. If you have a hankering to return to the world of Planescape before Torment: Tides of Numenera, though, it can be done. Here's how.
We're into the second stage of the World Cup now, meaning two more weeks of increasingly intense football. That's "we" in the global sense. I don't know how your country of origin performed, but England did not. If you're in a similar position, there are options available to help survive such national disappointment. You could pick a better team to live vicariously through. Or you could download Kerbal Space Program's official 'Kerbin Cup' mod. With it, you're able to take your footballs and hide away in the most desolate reaches of space—away from the harsh reality of underperforming athletes.
What started as an experiment to reintroduce Watch Dogs' deactivated E3 2012 presentation effects is quickly growing into a full graphics overhaul. The inaccurately named TheWorse Mod has been updated to version 0.8, bringing a number of improvements. New for this release is a much needed option to vary depth-of-field strength, compatibility with Ubisoft's recent patch, and a fix that enables 'Ultra' setting textures without the accompanied stuttering.
Before the launch of Dark Souls 2, modder Peter "Durante" Thoman released an alpha version of GeDoSaTo, his generic downsampling tool. He'd been working on the tool for months, and wrote about the process of developing the tool (at launch, specifically aimed at Dark Souls 2) on PC Gamer. At the time, Durante made it clear that the 0.1 "Dark Souls 2 Edition" was just the beginning. He planned for GeDoSaTo to eventually support all DirectX 9 games. Today marks a major milestone for GeoDoSaTo, as the tool's first beta build—dubbed "Stranger Than Fiction"—introduces a game-specific plugin system to support games other than Dark Souls 2. It's time to start downsampling everything.
Out of context, the teaser video for Total Chaos looks like an interesting, moody horror game. The abandoned cityscape, ominous ambiance, and foggy alleyways remind me of the upcoming Nether in particular, which runs on Unreal Engine 3. The two games look pretty similar. Here's the crazy thing: Total Chaos is a total conversion Doom II mod.
Here's something that nearly slipped unnoticed from our news noose. Fistful of Frags, the Wild West Source engine mod first released in 2007, recently relaunched as a free standalone game. It was hardly a trial to play before—thanks to the free-to-play Team Fortress 2 providing the SDK base required to get it working. Now it's even easier: just head to its Steam page to download the back-to-basics deathmatch shooter.
"My usual approach to puzzles is to build backwards," says Ian Stocker. Most of the 100 puzzles in Stocker's game Escape Goat 2 started that way—with a door for the goat to escape through and an idea of how it would get there. In early April, Stocker updated the Steam build with a beta level editor and Steam Workshop support. When the build launches out of beta, all of Escape Goat players will be able to create puzzles with the same tools Stocker used for his own levels.
To get a jump on the inevitably heated Workshop competition, I sat down with Stocker to make a PC Gamer puzzle. After 30 minutes of building and brainstorming, I've got a co-designer credit to my name.
Morrowind revival project Skywind looks like a valuable resurrection of Bethesda's 2002 RPG. So much so, that the community responsible for it are also porting another classic Elder Scrolls into the Skyrim engine. The name "Skyblivion" may look like what would happen if you sneezed too hard and smashed your head on a keyboard, but it signals the start of Oblivion's transfer into the newer TES. It's been in the works for a while, but a new trailer has surfaced, showing the progress the team have made.
This is the final part of our canon-destroying playthrough of Star Wars Conquest, a mod for sandbox RPG Mount & Blade.
Last week’s series of successful battles against the Empire was met by the realization that Star Wars Conquest seemingly has no end. In 20-some hours of play, I’ve learned that almost no amount of slaughtered Stormtroopers will significantly impact the universe. Named characters can’t die, captured planets rarely stay captured, prisoners always eventually escape, and climbing the political ranks of the Rebel Alliance mainly involves playing tax collector for Mon Mothma and Obi-Wan.
This is a chronicle of our absurd, canon-destroying playthrough of Star Wars Conquest, a mod for sandbox RPG Mount & Blade. Our campaign to ruin Star Wars appears each Tuesday.
Twenty hours into my Star Wars Conquest campaign, I realize that I have no idea what the game’s win state is. Is there one? Am I meant to crawl the galaxy until the end of time, endlessly gutting Stormtroopers, endlessly pillaging space farms, endlessly watching planets trade hands like used Toyotas between the immortal commanders of the Star Wars universe? By now, I’m positive that it’s impossible to actually kill off any of the game’s main figures—defeating a commander in combat results in either them escaping or being captured and eventually escaping. Hmmph.
Tamriel's ashy homeland of the Dark Elves is the source for many a Elder Scrolls hero's first memories—exploring ancient Dwemer ruins, sticking a spear into Dagoth Ur, or cursing the very words "cliff racer"—so it's small wonder a number of large-scale mods focus on overhauling the 2002 RPG. The massive Skywind effort is certainly exciting to look forward to, but some older projects are still steaming along quite nicely. Morrowind Rebirth has been around for a few years, and its latest update adds new areas to the game's already massive world.
Aperture Tag is a Portal 2 mod inspired by Tag: The Power of Paint, the 2009 DigiPen student project which influenced Portal 2's gel mechanics and puzzles. Instead of shooting portals, you shoot the game’s orange and blue liquids, which make you run faster and jump higher, respectively. And now you'll be able to add your own mods to the mix.
In 2012, Peter "Durante" Thoman wrote the popular mod DSfix for Dark Souls: Prepare to Die on PC, fixing its locked 1024x720 resolution and other issues. In 2013, he released a similar fix for Deadly Premonition. We asked Durante to analyze the PC port of Dark Souls 2 in a series of articles. He also modded the game. The image above is an in-game texture, not a Photoshop.
My first two articles about Dark Souls 2 investigated the PC port’s features and how generic PC tweaking tools like SweetFX can be used to further improve its graphics. Now it’s time to look at the full extent of what can be achieved by modifying Dark Souls 2 on a deeper level. First, I’ll provide a short overview of the general avenues available for PC game modding and how each applies to Dark Souls 2. Then I’ll detail the modifications I have implemented so far with a new tool I’m calling GeDoSaTo, which enables texture modding, arbitrary downsampling, and more. Consider it the successor to DSfix and DPfix—except its final goal is to work with any 3D game, not just Dark Souls 2.
As a game all about surviving in a hidden bloodsucker culture on the oblivious streets of Los Angeles, Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines fully deserves the embrace of undeath. It was the last effort from masterful RPG studio Troika Games, and its release in 2004 drew much ardor from fans yearning to join the World of Darkness canon—but it's also known as one of the glitchiest games of recent memory.
A troubled development path caused Bloodlines to launch in an unfinished state plagued with bugs, missing dialogue, and other Broken Things. But Bloodlines' heart has kept beating thanks to nearly a decade of fan-made patches—headquartered in the online coven Planet Vampire—fixing longstanding flaws, refreshing textures, restoring hidden content, and generally piecing back together Bloodlines' intended glory. Even better: the game is currently $5/£3 on Amazon.
One of the best memories from my Star Wars gaming holocron is loading up a LAN multiplayer match in Jedi Knight 2 with a low-gravity mutation switched on and a lightsabers-only weapon restriction. It was silly loads of fun, but the Force wasn't with publisher LucasArts' wishes to continue the series, as Disney closed the studio last April. Our only hope lies with the power of JK2's lingering community, where a brave modder is taking on the huge task of uplifting the entirety of the game's graphics in a HD remake mod.
A couple of months ago we wrote about Stalker: Lost Alpha, a mod that aimed to revive an early version of the game teased prior to release, which included more, bigger areas, and other features that didn't make into Stalker: Shadow of Chernobyl. Yesterday, the Hungarian team behind the mod, Dez0wave announced that some testers leaked a beta build of the mod, and the mod makers are understandably pretty upset about it.
I understand the desire for a lore-bending battle royale between Blizzard's various franchises. I also understand the desire for that all-star showdown to not take the form of a lane-pushing game. While Blizzard aren't about to create a 4X strategy, modders can certainly shoehorn their characters into an existing one. That's what has happened in Blizzard Allstars, which brings multiple of their factions into turn-based empire-'em-up Civilization 5: Gods & Kings.
In a new video for 2017, an upcoming survival-horror mod for Arma 3, the creature prototypes hint at multiplayer enemies with a dark and—and maybe inhuman—past. A good horror story usually has a moment where the hunted get's a glimpse of what's hunting him. It's often a split second of terror where the main character finally realizes just how out-matched he really is. And with its creeper and sadist characters, 2017 is putting its idea of horror on clear display.