So, what are you playing?

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

Most of us don't have delusions of making $15,000 a month as a professional gamer. So why might making $50,000 per hour as a live streamer sound like something one could work up to? And just as Sony Interactive launches a film and TV studio to adapt video game projects, rumor is that Game of Thrones author, George R.R. Martin, has consulted with FromSoftware on a dark Norse mythology video game called Great Rune.

So, what are you playing?

Dave Gamble
It's a long weekend coming up and we will be relocating to the sand dunes of the east banks of Lake Michigan, which means I'm going to be limited to the PS4. This trip is different, though, in that we will be meeting some friends at the campground. Having discovered that two controllers will allow two players to compete side-by-side in The Golf Club 2, a couple of critically important tasks have been the focus of my pre-departure preparations. While the wife makes sure we have sufficient foodstuffs, medicines, convenience items, and pet support stuff, I am concentrating on far more important things like getting a second controller for the PS4 and spending hours practicing on steep fairways and fast greens. Having beaten this guy every single time in dozens and dozens of head-to-head sessions on iRacing, I don't intend to start losing to him now! Especially with spouses as witnesses - I would never hear the end of it.

Randy Kalista
So there I was, owning the horrifyingly named Workers & Resources: Soviet Republic for only one week. Then I noticed something. My Steam counter was approaching the 60-hour mark with this brand new game. Wait a tick. Sixty hours. Divide by seven. Did I really just put in nonstop 8.5-hour days with Soviet Republic? It's been a self-imposed video game gulag around here. Good thing the wife and kiddo have been out of town. My work-life balance is currently out of balance. But these are the sacrifices we make for the motherland.

Meanwhile, in Russia, I was watching coal ore conveyor belts sidle down a mountain somewhere in the Ukrainian countryside. That plucky Tetris-like tune pops up on the soundtrack when my construction office catches fire. The third-world immigrants I'd imported into a nearby prefab block tower of project housing were now watching my 1974 East German ladder truck slam into the side of the structure fire. It's early access days. Plenty of bugs. Crashes to desktop every few hours.

Fire's out, though. Now I'm noticing the new school bus I put into action is picking up children and trying to drop them off at the Comrade Drinks Bar. I must've clicked the nondescript Cold War pub roof when I should've clicked the nondescript Cold War kindergarten roof when I'd set up that route. I should maybe fix that. I plant a couple more poplar trees behind the copper statue of Lenin. Just trying to brighten up my haze-gray communist urban planning that somehow saddled this small town with three coal power plants crisscrossed with towering megawatt power lines. Soviet Republic is Cities: Skylines times Transport Tycoon times Rise of Industry. On crack. Minus any meaningful tutorial on how to use crack.

But that's it for me. Only playing one game right now. Probably too much. Dasvidaniya, comrades.

EVE Online trailer captures the chatty nature of the game better than you'd expect

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

EVE Online: Invasion hits next week, May 28. Invasion marks the 44th expansion in the sci-fi MMO's impressive 16-year run. The Triglavians are some new bad guys in the EVE universe that are impolitely introducing themselves to the player base for the first time. They have cool-looking ships with red-glowy parts! They emerge from the Abyss on Tuesday, with the intensity of the invasion growing in the following days and weeks.

The Invasion expansion further brings industry changes to accommodate the new Tech II Triglavian ship hulls, brand new skills for Triglavian invention and manufacturing, along with new Tech II Triglavian components, datacores, and some tweaks to Triglavian ship and module production. It's a whole thing. There brings changes to War Declarations, quality-of-life improvements to the User Interface, defect fixes, graphical corrections, etc., etc. You may read the full patch notes here if you've got 10 full minutes to spare.

Like the 43 expansions before it, Invasion is free. But, whether you can access 100 percent of Invasion's content depends on your subscription level. If you're a non-subscriber playing for free, you won't have access to the new Tech II Triglavian ships and higher-tier stuff like that. Subscribers do.

Either way, I love these EVE cinematic trailers that—while not capturing actual gameplay—do capture the spirit of the kind of chat you can find in game. When done right, like in this case, EVE Online is able to get away with that kind of chatter in an official trailer better than most games.

What's NVIDIA got coming that's super?

by: John - - 0 Comments

NVIDIA is teasing something super with this 16 second clip. It doesn't show much, but I'm sure it'll all be clear once the final reveal is done. Is it a new Super version of their RTX 2080 Ti card? Is it something completely different?

May 27th is their press conference at Computex so I'm sure we'll get all the answers then. Until now, let the speculation run rampant.

Mechanic Miner looks like Terraria plus DIY vehicular shenanigans

by: Randy - - 0 Comments

Mechanic Miner looks like a good time. A jaunty, ginger-bearded steampunk engineer, sourcing dozens of vehicle pieces and parts to construct, has to negotiate pitfalls and hostile alien wildlife. The gameplay looks very you-buy-it, you-break-it. Like Terraria for gear heads. Put spikes on it. Put saw blades on it. Heck yeah put more wheels and gears and tracks on that bad boy.

Mechanic Miner is a sandbox builder with randomized environments. You scavenge resources, mine stuff, fight things, and research tech. The machines you build range from submarines to air balloons to spiderbots. And it's not just beasts you have to fend off. The terrain and surrounding elements can be just as deadly as the monstrosities. The sand worm in this video is totally great, though. Game Director Finn Nielsen had this to say in a press release:

In my spare time I began working on a game about engineering…this was seven years ago and it turns out I haven’t been able to stop! The team and I wanted to create an authentic world where players can make real, working machines. Once we put out a closed alpha an exceptional community grew around the game that helped us develop it so much. We look forward to the players enjoying the game that we have made with this amazing community.

With this having launched on Steam Early Access on May 22, five-person development team Hello John (not Hello Games) says there's more to come. It's taken Hello John seven years to get to this point, working from their admittedly cramped studio in Denmark, so I hope they start seeing some return on their investment.

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Ghostbusters content pack coming soon to Planet Coaster

by: Kinsey - - 0 Comments

If there's something strange in your coaster park, who you gonna call? Dan Aykroyd and William Atherton, apparently. The two are going to reprise their roles as Raymond Stantz and Walter Peck in the just-announced Ghostbusters content pack for Planet Coaster.

Featuring a new story-driven scenario and new gameplay mechanics, plus new characters, rides, and scenery straight from the 1984 Ghostbusters, the pack will have Aykroyd mentoring you as you build your park and address the ghostly issues with their rides. It's a sure hit for nostalgic players who, at the end of the day, just need a little OG ghostbusting action.

The pack will include:

  • A fully-voiced, narrative campaign featuring the voice talents of Dan Aykroyd and William Atherton
  • A new in-game interactive ghostbusting ride, The Ghostbusters Experience
  • A new, in-game Slimer-themed kiddie coaster, the RollerGhoster
  • Classic Ghostbusters characters including Raymond Stantz, Slimer, and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man
  • Authentic scenery pieces and sounds straight from the original movie, including the Ghostbusters HQ, ECTO-1 and Ray Parker Jr’s classic Ghostbusters theme

Fourth full-blood Vampire clan revealed for Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2

by: Kinsey - - 0 Comments

With ruthless cunning and domination, the Ventrue have emerged as the latest full-blood Vampire clan in Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2. You've never seen vampires as Machiavellian as these guys. Kings and kingmakers throughout history,  the Ventrue now lurk within the billion-dollar business of the 21st century, paving the way for a prosperous future for their clan.

From the press release: "The blood of rulers flows through the Ventrue’s veins. While that once meant embracing high-priests and aristocrats, they now recruit from investment bankers and corporate executives. The “Clan of Kings” see themselves as the architects of vampire society who hold lineage and loyalty above all. Unusually for the clan, the Ventrue of Seattle were drawn to the dream of building their own power structure without oversight from elder generations. Now that the Camarilla has gained control, many Ventrue have realigned to join these new rulers, or have doubled down on their autonomy."

Fittingly, the Ventrue's signature Discipline—Dominate—gives them control over the actions and memories of others. Mesmerize allows the Ventrue to place one NPC in a brief hypnotic trance in which they are oblivious to sound, touch, and even pain, while Command allows them to order the already-Mesmerized NPC to move or attack others. Though their Discipline of physical resilience, Fortitude, is a Masquerade violation if seen by a mortal (whether you use Absorb to deflect all hits and heal would-be wounds, or Personal Armor to turn your skin to stone), Dominate powers are not a Masquerade violation, so the Ventrue can pull the strings from the shadows and remain unnoticed even while their puppet is causing mayhem.

Check out the introduction trailer below, and be sure to hop over here to their website to get more information on Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2.

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Xbox Game Pass getting more May titles along with new June announcement

by: Dan - - 0 Comments

It looks like Microsoft has one last treat for Xbox Game Pass subscribers in May, as they announced that five additional titles will be added along with the group previously released earlier in the month.  The announcement also included the first three titles coming in June, highlighted by Superhot and The Banner Saga 2.  Check out the complete list below, along with descriptions, release date and GN Review score if applicable:

Metal Gear Survive (May 23)

Create your own character and learn to survive in a strange, alternate Metal Gear universe. Experience the enduring stealth action gameplay of the series, with new elements of exploration and survival. Scavenge resources, craft weapons, build a base camp, and explore the unknown while developing the skills necessary to survive in this hostile environment. Then, in co-op mode, assemble a team of four players to infiltrate and defend areas from hordes of creatures. Place fortifications and strategically place weapons against ever intensifying enemies. Teamwork and resourcefulness are key in these fast-paced co-op missions.

The Banner Saga (May 23) (GN PC Review)

Pile on your pelts, you’re joining a Viking story where you’re fighting to prevent the world’s end. You not only lead and level up members of your caravan, but you risk their permadeath, and even outright mutiny. Your decisions in combat as well as the journey will affect your personal story, because it’s written by your actions. It’s a recipe to care a lot about your characters, dig deep into Viking ethos, and try to beat the odds. Decide if you’re going to be a benevolent leader of the banner or be one that looks out for only your own.

Void Bastards (May 29)

A revolutionary new strategy-shooter that will test your wits as well as exercise your aim. Can you lead the misfit prisoners of the Void Ark through the derelict spaceships and myriad dangers of the Sargasso Nebula? Will you make the right choices about what to do, where to go and when to fight? Master combat, manage ship controls, scavenge supplies, craft improvised tools and much more!

Dead by Daylight (May 30)

Death is not an escape. Dead by Daylight is a 4 vs 1 multiplayer horror game, where one player takes on the role of the savage killer, and the other four players are survivors, who must escape the killer without getting caught.  That sounds easier than it is, because the Killing Ground environment changes every time you play.

Outer Wilds (May 30)

Explore for the sake of your curiosity with a hand-crafted solar system filled with secrets to discover and perils to avoid while exploring space. Players are given a variety of tools to aid in space-backpacking: including their own spaceship and jetpack; a surveyor probe for scouting and taking pictures; and a signalscope to track down audio signals as well as view landmarks from afar.

Full Metal Furies (June 6)

Defend the free world to save a war-torn world that is battling itself to extinction. Through working as a team to defeat special enemies, you’ll need to string organics combos that will deal massive damage to your enemies. Choose your hero, develop your combat style, and learn special moves that could save the world.

The Banner Saga 2 (June 6) (GN PC Review)

Continue the Banner Saga! The addition of new classes, as well as the new Horseborn race, give players more choices in the story and in combat. Since the game is story-driven, players will find that their decisions outside of battle affect combat conditions more often in The Banner Saga 2. If you played the first game, you can use your save file to carry your choices over so your favorite members of your Banner will be there.

Superhot (June 6)  (GN Superhit VR Review)

Blurring the lines between cautious strategy and unbridled mayhem, SUPERHOT is the FPS in which time moves only when you move. No regenerating health bars. No conveniently placed ammo drops. It’s just you, outnumbered and outgunned, grabbing the weapons of fallen enemies to shoot, slice, and maneuver through a hurricane of slow-motion bullets.

Ace Combat 7 DLC ready to take flight

by: Rob - - 0 Comments

DLC package #1 is out now for Ace Combat 7. Available via the PS Store, Microsoft Store, or Steam; This DLC introduces a new fighter in the ADF-11F Raven, a new deployable weapons with the UAV, and a new skin for the F22A Mobius. 

Ace Combat 7 is available for PS4, PSVR, XBOX One, and PC. DLC #1 can be purchased separately or is included in the Season Pass. You can check out the full review here, where we gave it an 8.5.

Xbox Backward Compatibility Sale starts today

by: Josh - - 0 Comments

Xbox announced an Xbox Backward Compatibility Sale which starts today and runs through May 27th. You can find deals of up to 75% off on nearly 200 games on the Microsoft website. Popular games, such as Red Dead Redemption and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, are included in the sale.

This sale comes on the same day that Sony announced that PlayStation 5 players would be able to play with PlayStation 4 players using backwards compatibility and an earlier announce that the new console would also be backwards compatible with PlayStation 3 game. Given the lengths Microsoft went to to ensure the Xbox One was backwards compatible with the Xbox 360 during this generation, we can probably expect the next generation of Xbox consoles to be backwards compatible as well, so it would probably be wise to take advantage of the sale while it is available.

RAD launch date announced, fan art contest begins

by: Josh - - 0 Comments

BANDAI NAMCO and Double Fine Productions announced yesterday that RAD, a 3D action rogue-like game, will launch on August 20th, 2019. The game will be available on Steam, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.

Set in a world that has faced Armageddon twice, you will take on the role of a teenager who must travel into a wasteland of unknown creatures to find the solution for healing the world and creating new life.

The developers have also kicked off a fan art contest. Fans can submit graffiti designs on the contest website. The winning design, which will be selected by the developers, will be featured in the game and receive other swag items.

You can view the game's announcement trailer below.

You can view the full press release by clicking Read More.

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