Rock Paper Shotgun – PC Game Reviews, Previews, Subjectivity
Lights, Camera, Nuclear Winter73
Double jumps and melting cities5
The Acer Predator Z35p remains one of the best gaming monitors you can buy right now if you're after a 120Hz ultrawide gaming screen, but the main problem I've always had with it is its high price. Thankfully, Amazon UK have removed that obstacle today as part of their July Summer Sale, knocking £170 off its usual price of £800 to take it down to a much more appealing £630, which is the cheapest it's been since last year's Black Friday sale. That's not the only gaming monitor on sale today, either, so read on below for our Amazon Summer Sale monitor deal highlights.
If Graham allowed us to swear above the cut, I would one hundred percent have started this post with a string of expletives. Because Warhammer-themed sports game Blood Bowl 2 is utterly maddening. I'm playing in a league at the moment, the bottom of which I am hugging like a flipping anchor, and while the people I'm playing with are great, I dread every fixture as two hours I know I will never get back. The losing, I couldn't care less about. I am not really very competitive about games anyway, and as a newcomer to this one, it's only natural that I'd get repeatedly mauled by a league full of more experienced players. Oh no. The problem, crucially, is the anatomy of a Blood Bowl 2 loss.
Screenshot Saturday Sundays! We're having a particularly lazy Sunday afternoon this week, but that shouldn't mean forgoing a stroll through the delights on offer through the #ScreenshotSaturday hashtag for our usual weekend viewing. This week: pastel cartography, mycelium cottages, data-corrupted highways from hell and squirrels.
Sundays are for juggling while slacklining. This isn't even my final form, etc. Here's the best writing about videogames from the past week.
For his blog, Nico Tuason chronicled the ten years that have passed since he started making videogames, right from his very first animation. It's remarkable to see so much of someone's life laid out like this, with pivots into parenting, promising egg tart recipes, and a volcanic eruption.
How did you expect Fortnite to celebrate the USA's Independence Day? Fireworks, Rockets. Llamas and musicians falling from the sky? Instead, Epic have more appropriate plans for 2020's 4th of July celebration. As Black Lives Matter protests continue into the Summer, the monolithic battle royale hopes to use its new party island to educate - broadcasting Øpus United's anti-racism presentation We The People throughout the day.
If Team Fortress 2's last update cut the fingers off the game's unruly bots, then Valve have followed it up by cutting out their tongues. This week's update for the venerable hat-blaster has doubled down on muting suspicious accounts, removing voice chat from players who've had their text privileges removed. But while that might keep the troublesome bots at bay, it seems some unlucky new players have been left without a voice in the teamwork-heavy shooter.
Photography games are very in right now, haven't you heard? Lifting off earlier this week, Cellular Harvest is a wonderfully relaxing short game about exploring vivid lo-fi wildernesses, capturing alien fauna on camera, and reporting back to HQ so your corporate overlords can turn all those creatures into bug juice. Shooting with cameras, not guns, doesn't make you any less complacent in extinction it seems.
David Bowie might once have asked if there is life on Mars, but Desert Golfing developer Justin Smith is quite confident that - if there is - they'll be well up for a round of the king's game. Six years later, and Golf On Mars is swinging onto Steam with a more alien take on the 2014 golf 'em up's peaceful procedural putting. It's more golf, it's extraterrestrial golf, but is it better golf?
We're having another quiet one on the notE3 front, though we'll be back into it next week with streams including Ubisoft and Devolver Digital blasting their games about on the weekend.
What are you playing this weekend? Here's what we're clicking on!
The first game from indie studio 3-Fold Games is a bittersweet one. Before I Forget is a first-person exploration game about a woman with early onset dementia uncovering her past. Despite that, 3-Fold call it "delicate and atmospheric," as the main character remembers details about her life and partner. It will release on July 16th.
Following a series of allegations of sexual harrassment and abuse against multiple Ubisoft employees at several studios, the company have laid out more of their plan to change.
"We have significant work to do to improve the ways in which we operate and collaborate, and I am personally committed to ensuring we make these fundamental changes," Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said. "They need to be profound, and we need to implement them quickly at all levels of the organisation."
Town-building simulation The Setters has been in the works for a while but it will be some more whiles yet before it launches. Ubisoft have announced that the upcoming eighth entry to the Settlers series is delayed so the team can work on responding to fan feedback. A new date hasn't yet been chosen.
Ubisoft may be sliding in to the tail end of the summer FakE3 showcases, but they're not to be outdone. A new teaser trailer hints at which games we'll see during their upcoming Ubisoft Forward showcase on Sunday, July 12th. You probably won't be surprised by the names if you've kept up with this year's not-E3 but hey, here's your confirmation.
Alright folks, start up the post-apocalyptic phone tree. Horizon Zero Dawn now has a PC release date. Guerilla Games had previously announced plans for a summer release and then, to my equal parts joy and sadness, revealed a trailer for the sequel before gracing PC players with a date for the original. Well that's solved now. You'll be able to take Aloy on a good ol' fashioned robo dino hunt while uncovering the secrets of the apocalypse on August 7th.
Squad up and suit up and then probably get shot up so that someone can rid you of Call Of Duty: Warzone's burly Juggernaut suit. Infinity Ward have added the new Juggernaut Royale mode to Warzone for this weekend in which teams of three will scuffle over the specialized armor and minigun. You can drop in for Juggernaut trios now through Tuesday, July 7th.
Fighting game championship Evo has been cancelled this year following abuse allegations against Evo co-founder and CEO Joey "MrWizard" Cuellar. Evo are ejecting him from the company and replacing him as CEO. The makers of half the games in Evo's lineup had already pulled out of the event following the allegations, including Street Fighter gang Capcom and Mortal Kombat devs NetherRealm. Evo Online was due to run this weekend, one of the many virtual replacements for events called off due to the pandemic.
Next-gen graphics card fever has gripped the internet hard over the last couple of months, with rumours flying this way and that about the upcoming Nvidia Ampere GPUs and the ray-tracing-capable AMD Navi cards. But the latest GPU gossip doing the rounds isn't anything to do with Nvidia's RTX 3000 series. Oh no. Instead, it would seem Nvidia are preparing yet another variant of their entry level GTX 1650 graphics card called the GTX 1650 Ultra according to a new product listing from a Chinese graphics card vendor. The real kicker of this story, though? Its GPU is apparently based on the same one that currently resides in the RTX 2070.
Newegg may have some pretty good gaming laptop deals going on at the moment as part of their big 4th July celebrations, those looking to build a new PC on the cheap by buying individual components are actually better off looking elsewhere, as we've found several CPU and graphics card deals that are a lot better than what you'll find on Newegg.
We don't really post about big numbers, but sometimes a game lots of us really like boasts about a really really big one. Three million people have bought Dead Cells since it came out on early access in 2017, which is frankly ridiculous. That's three times this many dots, except every dot is a human who chose to sacrifice precious money* so they could enjoy a videogame. And they were right to.
It's an excellent platforming roguelike that keeps getting more so. The "Update Of Plenty" update landed on Wednesday, bringing a big balance overhaul while reworking weapons and the economy with an eye to "open up a wider range of builds, while not sacrificing what made meta builds fun". Crossbows are two-handed now! Makes sense.
When I was a teenager buying a budget computer game involved pedalling your penny-farthing along cobbled streets until you happened upon a branch of GAME, Electronics Boutique, WHSmith, or Woolworths, entering said store, selecting a hardback-sized box largely filled with air, and then handing a shop assistant a crumpled banknote with a picture of Florence Nightingale on one side. Today, my penny-farthing sits rusting in the shed, most of the local game emporiums are now nail bars or coffee shops, and a tenner buys ten golden oldies not one. Modern life is a curate's Cadbury Creme Egg and no mistake.
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If you just can’t get enough Warhammer, then boy do the folks at Fanatical have a good deal for you. As part of their latest Red Hot Sale, they've not only got a bunch of Warhammer games on sale, including 75% off Vermintide 2, but they've also put together a new eBook bundle from Black Library, letting you grab six Warhammer books for just £1. Alternatively, you can buy 26 of them for £18 instead of their usual price of *checks notes* £165, which, yes, I think officially qualifies as "a good deal".
Valorant is great, when it isn't making me sad. So goes my Valorant review. Friends are a key component of Riot's snazzy new wizard FPS, primarily because they won't (usually) swear at you when you do something stupid. A nice side benefit, though, is that you wind up with your own private and superior ways of describing parts of the map. These are important, because you often need to very quickly communicate where an enemy is.
It's the linguistic Wild West, and it delights me. Spawns become Oreos. Bombs get "defrosted". I asked Twitter for a peek into the private nomenclature of other friendship groups, and I'm very glad I did.
Science, the most difficult of the arts. We are trained from toddlerhood to respect and fear the products of scientific advancement, such as the selfie sticks or mechanical pencil. The unsurpassed boffins who create such devices are worthy of admiration. But there is one realm in which science is not such a gentle guardian of the people. That’s right, it’s videogames. In games, scientists are treacherous, evil, stupid, murderous or some genetic concoction of all the above. Here are the 9 worst scientists in PC games.
Arise: A Simple Story is a game about the three Ls. No, not Lemons, Lemons, Lemons (a small joke for RPS Vid Bud fans, there), but life, love, and loss. You know, the BIGGIES. In it, you're reliving the memories of a sweet old man as he journeys on to the after life, taking in everything from the breathless rush of childhood, where you're bounding across giant sunflowers in the wind and hitching rides on the back of bumblebees, to the first blush of romance and the heartache of later life. It is, as its title suggests, not a complicated story, but man alive does it go places.
Bit on the nose, eh? Swords sharpened, muscles glistening, Conan Exiles was ready to make the jump to the Epic Games Store today, arriving with the fanfare of a spot in Epic's free game rotation. Pity, for the old warrior has been knocked back by a mighty blow. Funcom's sword-swinging survival sandbox has been pushed out of its new home indefinitely - and when it arrives, it won't be marching for free.
Nudist tree-puncher Rust is feeling the need for speed. While Facepunch Studio's big ol' murder sandbox has so far let you locomote by foot, horseback or the miracle of flight, today's update has littered the wilderness with battered old motorcars. They're filthy, broken, knackered old lemons, but hey - there's a reason the devs didn't call the thing "factory-condition", isn't there?
War never changes, but prestige TV sure can. Today, Bethesda announced that Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, creators of HBO's Westworld, are taking their cinematic lens to Fallout, working with Amazon Studios to create a post-apocalyptic telly show based on the long-running nuke 'em up RPG. Hold on, though - a darkly comic show about robot cowboys, deserts and conspiracies? Sounds quite a leap for the folks behind Westworld.
I dread any ‘soulslike’ game arriving in my inbox, as it normally means having to make a video based on the first fight shot from different angles, as I couldn’t get any further. So it speaks to the appeal of Cold Symmetry's Mortal Shell that I persevered long enough to put together an entire video preview, and find a delightful lute to jam on in the middle of a swamp. Less loot, more lutes: the campaign starts here.
After a week of mysterious tweets and a fake company website, Ubisoft have entered the battle royale ring with Hyper Scape. A "Technical Test" for the surprise BR landed in the hands of select streamers earlier today, with half a million viewers already tuning in to have a gander at Ubi's hectic urban battlefield - and to get their hands on the closed test themselves by way of Twitch drops.
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