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Dominic Tarason

2 weeks ago

Dangerous Driving from ex-Burnout developers is out now

It's taken some false starts (and a bizarre indoors destructo-golf game) to get here, but Dangerous Driving is out now and a clear tribute to the earlier, more arcade-like Burnout games. Developed by ex-Criterion developers at Three Fields Entertainment, it's a solo (multiplayer is due later as free DLC) arcade racer where you're best off driving through your opponents. I've fond memories of spending many an…

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Eve Online bans real-world lobbyist over alleged in-game corruption

Today, cutthroat sandbox MMO Eve Online further blurs the line between reality and game. Developers CCP have brought down the ban-hammer on Brian Schoeneman, US maritime law lobbyist outside of the game, and elected official "Brisc Rubal" within. The reason: Corruption, announcing that Schoeneman abused his position as a Council Of Stelllar Management member to share "confidential information" that allowed another player to "conduct illicit…

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Fantasy General 2: Invasion announced and due in 2019

Fantasy General was probably the first hex-based strategy game I was able to wrap my head around as a kid, so today's announcement of Fantasy General 2: Invasion fills me with curiosity. Developed by Owned By Gravity and to be published by mostly-serious strategy house Slitherine, it is, once again, a hex-based wargame packed with elves, goblins and wizards. Unlike the original (a fun but…

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Notmycar is doing donuts in early access

Quietly released on Friday, NMC Studios vehicular free-to-play battle royale shooter Notmycar launched into early access. It's immediately familiar stuff to anyone who has played any other battle royale, only there's just forty competitors, and it's somewhat harder for them to hide as they're all driving around in loud, heavily armed vehicles. After taking it for a spin for a couple rounds, I reckon that…

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Glorious Companions gathers the troops for launch in June

I'm always happy to see another game reaching for the (increasingly contested) fantasy mercenary sim crown. The oddly titled Glorious Companions invites immediate comparison to the more historically-skewed Mount & Blade in its real-time 3D overworld, but features turn-based tactical battles similar to Battle Brothers. Developers Ancient Forge Studio say it's still deep in development, with an initial early access release planned for June, followed…

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Pathway goes raiding for lost arks on April 11th

Indiana Jones-ish, Nazi-mashing tactical RPG Pathway is just over the horizon, launching next Thursday, April 11th. Developed by Robotality, it's looking like a major step up over their debut tactics game Halfway. It appears to be a tantalising blend of FTL, Curious Expedition and cover-based, very XCOM squad combat - there's exploration, bartering, party building and lots of RPG granularity, and five semi-procedural campaigns. It helps…

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Octopath Traveler may be travelling to PC next

Square Enix's Octopath Traveler might just be the next console RPG to make the hop to PC, if a Korean Game Rating & Administration Committee listing (spotted by Gematsu) is any hint. The back-to-basics JRPG was a minor hit on the Switch, although debate still rages as to whether it's helped or hurt by it splitting its story between eight player characters with their own…

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Valve respond confusingly to European Commission region-locking complaint

Earlier today, the European Commission released a statement claiming Valve and five other publishers may have worked together to breach EU international competition rules. The companies are accused of blocking the activation of Steam keys purchased from other nations, even if the purchase and activation locations are both EU member states. The companies named include Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media (including Deep Silver) and…

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Enter The Gungeon rolls out its final update today

Dodge Roll Games are finally putting their twitchy roguelike shooter Enter The Gungeon to bed, with one large final update, A Farewell To Arms, out now. It looks to be a significant free expansion, adding another set of guns and gadgets, two new playable characters (one purely random, one seemingly story-focused), a new level with its own boss and a new way to play: Rainbow…

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Warframe remasters the Plains Of Eidolon today

Spring is in the air in Warframe, and so are a bunch of bouncing Grineer tanks. A major overhaul update has revitalised the Plains Of Eidolon, the free-to-play shooter's original open-world zone. Digital Extremes have returned to Earth to polish up the environment, bringing it more in line with the scenic Venusian landscapes of Fortuna. That means more greenery, some new boss fights, more animals…

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Draugen departs to unravel nordic mysteries next month

Scenic Norwegian mystery Draugen might have missed its original 2015 release date a tad, but judging by today's story trailer, it hasn't suffered for its extra development time. Now due out next month, Red Thread Games and writer Ragnar Tørnquist (The Longest Journey, The Secret World) are ready to show a little more of their 1920s investigative adventure. Amusingly described by the developers as "Fjord Noir",…

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The Division 2 starts a month of April incursions tomorrow

The Division 2 rolls out its first major update tomorrow, starting a mini-season of content Ubisoft and Massive are calling Invasion: Battle For DC. Broken up into three updates, tomorrow's adds the Stronghold mission to take down the high-tech Black Tusk faction, a new World Tier with new invaded missions and a new PvP map. On April 25th, the game is due its first eight-player…

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Monster Hunter: World carts home a free high-res texture pack today

Dragon-botherers with a few gigabytes of space and VRAM spare get to see Monster Hunter: World's land of angry lizard-hurting in sharper focus today. Capcom have rolled out an update for the game, along with a free, optional high-res texture pack that more than doubles the game's installation size. It's a hefty thirty gigabyte download and will happily wolf down six gigabytes of VRAM (though…

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The Witness goes free on the Epic Games Store for two weeks

Whether you feel that The Witness is slightly or enormously pretentious, three things are undeniable: It contains a lot of puzzles, it's lovely to look at, and it's the Epic Games Store's new fortnightly giveaway. Developed by Jonathan Blow's (Braid) studio Thekla, it's part Myst, part jumbo puzzle book. In the game, your sole method of interaction with its lovely landscapes is to draw lines,…

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Death Mark begins haunting PC today

Japanese horror game Death Mark has escaped from its console-shaped crypt to haunt again on PC, and is out today. Developed by Experience, it's mostly a visual novel, but with some Fighting Fantasy-esque game-book elements. There are stats, choices and adventure-style inventory puzzling, but they're secondary to the stories being told. A collection of ghost stories, with your cursed investigator trying to stave off their…

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3 weeks ago

The Glass Staircase is a short, sweet tribute to Italian horror

The mark of a good horror film is in building tension, then releasing it at just the right moment, and for just the right amount of time. The Glass Staircase is a PS2-era inspired  survival horror chiller from prolific low-fi horror dev Puppet Combo that demonstrates this well. While it's a bit rough around the edges, there's a very well paced, roughly film-length bit of…

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Calico is crowdfunding a world of magical cat cafes

In Calico, a magical girl can use magic (duh) to grow an ordinary cat to the size of a horse so she can ride it while another, smaller wobbly physics cat rides on her head. There's also something about managing a magical village's cat cafe, but that seems secondary to what I just said about cat-stacks. Developed by CatBean Games and over halfway funded after…

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HyperParasite infests early access today

Synth-soundtracked, '80s-inspired games are standard fare, but I'm giving HyperParasite a pass for its early access launch today. A twin-stick roguelike shooter (with local co-op) by Troglobytes Games, it taps into the rich vein of classic action movie heroes, villains and cliches of the era. Playing as an alien blob, you're fragile, but can possess enemies to turbo-charge their attacks and use their health bar…

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Bow To Blood: Last Captain Standing sets sail today

Bow To Blood: Last Captain Standing from Tribetoy is an odd beast - a VR-optional first person sky-ship shooter, framed as a Survivor-style space reality TV show and with light roguelike elements. It's out now on PC, expanded and free of its future-goggle requirements after a stint as a PlayStation VR exclusive. Players juggle steering their ship, directing its guns at larger foes, personally zapping smaller…

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Paranoia: Happiness Is Mandatory takes us troubleshooting in 2019

Contrary to Disney propaganda, Alpha Complex is the happiest place on Earth. You now this because the Computer says so, and disagreeing with Friend Computer is treason. Paranoia: Happiness Is Mandatory is a long-awaited videogame adaptation of the darkly comic tabletop RPG, developed by Black Shamrock and Cyanide, and out later this year. Players lead a squad of elite (not really) Troubleshooters, the most expendable of all…

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