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Daybreak Games, the makers of PlanetSide 2 and EverQuest, have bought Cold Iron Studios. Formed in 2015 by former City Of Heroes and Neverwinter developers, Cold Iron have been making a yet-unrevealed shooter set in the Alien universe for several years. While business acquisitions aren't usually that interesting, this one means that mysterious Alien game might actually see the light of day.

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SSD deals of the week – 12th August 2020

If you've been thinking about upgrading your PC with one of today's best SSDs for gaming, you're in the right place, as we've rounded up all the lowest prices in the UK and US from around the web. This week, a new Ebay voucher code means there are some great bargains to be had on Samsung SSDs and WD Blue and Black drives in the UK, and Newegg are also holding a massive WD sale over in the US. Whether you're looking for a cheap SATA drive or a brand-new NVMe SSD, these are the cheapest SSD deals of the week.

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According to the reams of footage on my hard drive dated from the last few days, I have played Post Void.

It is possible I did not start out in this reality. It is possible I have somehow travelled here, to replace this universe's version of me, who started playing Post Void and vanished without a trace. Asked to explain, I can only go by the notes she left behind. They start out lucid enough, but, well.

"Post Void is an FPS that feels like Devil Daggers had a fever dream about Hotline Miami while drowning in a vat of caffeine. It is magnificent.

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I don't know what's more surprising: that someone has set up a Kinect to control aeroplanes in Grand Theft Auto V by holding his arms out like a kid pretending to be a plane on the playground, or that he didn't make speed controlled by how loudly he shouted "Nyoom!" This is the latest work of Eric "Insert Controller Here" Heckman, a YouTuber known for his weird custom controllers (including one to ragequit by pouring literal salt). Now he's here T-posing, pretending to be a plane through Microsoft's motion sensor. And yes, absolutely he's planning to do this for Microsoft Flight Simulator too.

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Fall Guys is adding a new final round level today

I was today years old when I learned that Mediatonic's bean-based battle royale, Fall Guys, has more than one final level. I've played the game a bunch, and yet I've only ever played the one where you have to jump for that dang crown! Perhaps my luck will change with today's update though, because the game is getting a new level for the final beans to compete in. It's called Jump Showdown, and if you played in the beta you'll likely recognise it.

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Feature: Still never got round to calling it "Twitcher"

Have You Played… The Witcher?

I almost forgot how much everyone raved about The Witcher 2. RPS founder-turned-fugitive Jim Rossignol said in his The Witcher 2 review that "This is one of the most significant games of 2011. Right now it looks like most significant PC-only game of 2011". It's a series that has since become a juggernat, helped made a billionaire, and even overcome the traditionally murderous adaptation to film media.

So I went and played the first one, and never got round to the rest. I really should though.

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Game development can often feel like a locked box. Behind walls of marketing and non-disclosure agreements, we rarely we get an insight into how our favourite games are made. Enter Mixolumia developer Davemakes, who's kept a complete Twitter log of the rhythmic puzzler's development from prototyping to its release this past weekend.

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Three green eyes lurk in the shadows of Rainbow Six Siege, which means it's time for Tom Clancy stealth buff Sam Fisher to join the wargames. It might be five years since he last headlined his own game, but the Splinter Cell star will join Team Rainbow in Operation: Shadow Legacy. Expect more intel on the ageing sneaker's career change alongside the update's full reveal this Sunday.

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Halo Infinite has been delayed into 2021

Halo Infinite is a Series X launch title no more. Following a seemingly shaky transition to working from home, developers 343 Industries have cited Covid-19 woes (and the extra time and polish needed following last month's somewhat shaky showcase) in their decision to postpone Johnny Halo and the war gorillas' trip to the great big hula-hoop in the sky 'til next year.

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For many of us, Winter couldn't seem further away right now. Nevertheless, it's coming unseasonably, soon should Minecraft: Dungeons be believed. Mere weeks after lurching out of the jungle, the Minecraft hack-n-slash is bracing for its Creeping Winter DLC, and it's bringing more than just a touch of frostbite when the cold rolls in on September 8th.

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Despite being off work and mostly offline the past fortnight, I couldn't help but be caught in the cultural phenomenon that is Blaseball. It's a browser game simulating a supernatural baseball league, where players place bets on teams like the Chicago Firefighters (motto: "We're from Chicago") and Charleston Shoe Thieves ("Your kicks are my kicks"), vote on rule changes, and pray that players like Jessica Telephone or Blood Hamburger aren't struck by a peanut allergy or incinerated by a rogue umpire. While I wasn't online to play last season, I did spent a lot of time cooing over fan art on Twitter. The fan art community is: very good.

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Feature: He's going through a lot right now

I Am Dead is a puzzle game about a ghost who can look inside fruit

"If you're a ghost, and you walk through a wall..." asks Richard Hogg, in the tone of a man confronted with a real head-scratcher, "...do you get to see the inside of the wall?"

It's a good question. The kind which, for most people, might fuel a good half hour in a pub, or a 2am chat with a partner who can't sleep. But for Hogg and his long-term collaborator Ricky Haggett - who last year spun a thought about the simple pleasure of stacking shelves into the phenomenal Wilmot's Warehouse - it's a question worth writing a game about. That game is I Am Dead, and after watching Hogg and Haggett play for half an hour, it looks like exactly the tonic I need in the middle of this long, dark year.

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Feature: When it's not crashing, of course

Horizon Zero Dawn benchmarks: what kind of performance you can expect on PC

Horizon Zero Dawn hasn't got off to the best start on PC. While we've had minimal performance issues here at RPS, others have found it downright unplayable due to frequent crashes, stuttering and more. Guerrilla Games have said that they're investigating these technical problems as a matter of top priority, and we expect another patch to be forthcoming very soon.

In the meantime, though, I'd thought I'd make use of my relatively problem-free Horizon Zero Dawn experience to take a closer look at how the game runs across a variety of different graphics cards when it's not misbehaving, detailing what kind of performance you can expect from nearly all of today's best graphics cards, and how to improve your PC's performance if you find your graphics card's struggling a bit.

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Storm's finally here, folks. Over a year since it hit Steam Early Access, Risk Of Rain 2 is popping on its wellies to brave the rocky seas of a full release. Fortunately, The Captain's on deck as a new playable survivor, steering the frenetic third-person shooter through an ocean of new items, enemies and custom servers to reach its ultimate conclusion - a massive alien brawl on the moon.

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Just when you think video games are done throwing battle royales at you, they find a way to slip another new one in. The most recent on the scene is Hyper Scape, Ubisoft's fast-paced take on the last-man-standing game mode. After a few weeks of betas galore, the game properly launched today, kicking off its first season. Now, a first season wouldn't be very good without new toys to play with, so it's bringing with it a new weapon, new Hack and even some limited-time game modes to keep you interested.

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Grab an SSD bargain with the latest Ebay voucher

There's a new Ebay voucher code doing the rounds in the UK today that will take up to 15% off a bunch of products from selected sellers until August 14th. For PC gamers, you'll want to head to Box Deals, the discount arm of Box.co.uk, which I've highlighted good stuff from in the past. There are loads of deals to be had on all sort of PC components, but the ones I wanted to highlight today are its various SSD deals, nearly all of which beat the current prices you'll find over on Amazon. If you've been hankering after a Samsung 860 Evo or a WD Black SN750, now's the time to pick one up on the cheap.

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Getting into a new MMORPG is always a little daunting, never mind one as huge as Final Fantasy XIV. Fortunately, Square Enix have made that hill a little easier to climb. Closing out Shadowbringers' story may be Patch 5.3: Reflections in Crystal's headline act - but if you've only just started dipping your toe into the massive online JRPG, today's update gives you a hell of a lot more content to prod at with 2015's Heavensward expansion.

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The Sims 4 has always kind of been The Truman Show as god game, hasn't it? You make your little puppet people, you control every aspect of their lives and personality from birth until death, you make them get in the pool and then remove the ladder. I am become Ed Harris, destroyer of worlds, right? And now, thanks to an incredible build creation shared by Sims community member "Simoniona", your Sims game can be The Truman Show both metaphorically and literally.

She's created a version of Truman's neighbourhood from the movie, so your Sims, too, can wish their neighbours good afternoon, good evening and good night. And, even more impressively, there are two versions of it. One is the street from, as it were, Truman's point of view at the start of the movie - a suburban paradise. The second is when the scales have fallen from his eyes. The lot is bordered with big movie set surrounds, a light has crashed onto the set, and we even have the iconic steps and door for your tiny Trumans to make their own escape.

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Feature: Imagine digging up your garden to discover a technologically advanced bug society living right under your feet

Cyberknight is the cyberpunk Hollow Knight mod I didn’t know I needed

What if Hollow Knight... but cyberpunk? This was never a question that really crossed my mind. The futuristic neon stuff is everywhere at the moment, largely because of CD Projekt Red's impending RPG Cyberpunk 2077, but the last place I expected to find hints of the techy genre was in a gothic metroidvania about a long lost kingdom of bugs. Inspired by all the cyberpunk goings-on, someone is working on a little project called Cyberknight: a Hollow Knight mod that will turn the Hallownest into a sci-fi dystopia. It looks extremely cool, and I had a chat with the mod's designer to find out more about it.

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The usual annual Call Of Duty announcement, like everything, has been out of step this year. But there are signs that it's about to happen. An alternate reality game aimed at publicising what we believe will be titled Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War has been solved, revealing that a reveal is to be revealed.

On Friday, something is happening, but nobody knows what. There is a hint, albeit slight, that this will mean something for Warzone.

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With the "biggest update ever" for GTA Online still promised for later this year, Rockstar today released a smaller content update to tide crimers over. The 'Los Santos Summer Special' update, now live, adds news bits and pieces across existing modes and activities rather than something entirely new. That still includes new cars, new F1 race tracks, new PvP maps set inside the Diamond Casino, and more. Some handy quality-of-life changes too, like the Casino's Lucky Wheel saying when you can next spin again.

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Some former Prey and Dishonored developers are making Weird West, a top-down cowboy action-RPG that's a bit like an immersive sim. This much we knew, and had already puzzled over. Fondly, like. The dev's pedigree gained my curiosity, but this interview with Prey and Dishonored creative director Raphael Colantonio has my attention.

Weird West will be an "action-resolved version of something like Fallout meets Ultima 7", says Colantonio, with "a space of possibilities where no two players have the same playthrough exactly". He doesn't let slip much more than that - but he does have some interesting things to say about immersive sim-iness, and why he left Arkane.

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Feature: The Ballad of Gretchen Anderson

Thousand Threads is a chilled out walking sim that runs on petty violence

I've seen my share of American media that treats postal workers with a patriotic significance. To an extent, it makes sense. Some of the most revolutionary changes to human societies followed rapid developments in communication technology or infrastructure. We're in the middle of such a period right now, even.

Thousand Threads is a walking simulator with an open world light RPG-ish simulation on top. It is a little bit, like Death Stranding, about how a courier or postman can hold a society together. It's a vastly more relaxing and low-key game, and about walking in the woods and observing the dynamic behaviour of its many NPCs than rebuilding or fighting or pontificating. There's not even a story as such. But through playing it over these last few days, I have come to understand that it is not, in fact, the player's role as a noble postal worker holding this society together. It is Gretchen Anderson.

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The 15-year wait for a Bloodlines sequel will stretch a little longer, because Paradox today announced they've delayed the launch of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 into 2021. While they had never announced a specific release date, the supernatural RPG was expected this year. Now Paradox and developers Hardsuit Labs say they want more time to make sure it lives up to the Bloodlines legacy (and presumably not repeat its mistakes).

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Ubisoft have published a new version of their cinematic trailer for Assassin's Creed Valhalla. It's mighty similar to the first one we saw, though this one includes music from the official soundtrack instead of modern rock. Oh, and it also swaps out bearded Eivor for not-bearded Eivor, the other half of of Valhalla's interchangeable protagonist.

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In most RPGs, no matter the arsenal available, I always find myself settling down with that one favourite weapon. Sometimes it has a stat perk I've grown accustomed to. Other times it's a uniquely-named item I can't bear to part with. Sometimes it just looks pretty. Cyberpunk 2077's wide selection of armaments sounds like it will allow you to pick favourites in the same fashion, though CD Projket Red say they want to encourage players to switch things up as well. You can get the breakdown on all the weapon types in a segment from their second Night City Wire livestream.

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Ages ago I learned how to lockpick in real life, and ever since I've been so impressed at how video games emulate the feeling of managing to crack a lock open. I think maybe it's the noise, that signature *clunk* that makes it so satisfying. It's a staple of RPGs like Skyrim, where lockpicking is literally a skill you can level up. But loads of games have introduced their own unique minigames to let you unlock things, and now you can see most of them in one place thanks to the museum of lockpicking mechanics.

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Unlike your Geralt of Rivias of the RPG world, CD Projekt Red's next game Cyberpunk 2077 will let you determine more of your protagonist's personality, including their history. You'll get to choose one of three backgrounds for your main character V that change who you know and how you're able to tackle quests throughout the game. In their second Night City Wire livestream, CD Projekt Red give a new look at each of the three Lifepaths available.

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Feature: Live and kicking on a Monday night

Join the RPS VidBuds live to chat about all the PC gaming news this week!

Our charming and knowledgeable VidBuds are beaming live, direct to your living room (providing your living room has some way to access YouTube) once again this week, with the second episode of their new regular show, The PC Gaming Weekspot!

Let the lovely lads keep you company while you eat your dinner, as they chew over all the week's most interesting PC gaming news. This time that includes live reactions to any news to come out of Cyberpunk 2077's second Night City Wire (which also aired tonight), Rocksteady's teasing of a new Suicide Squad game, and the Baldur's Gate 3 delay - plus much more! And you can watch it all right here on dear old RPS, right now at 6pm BST!

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