Has Assassin’s Creed managed to find itself during its gap year?

sliding down a pyramid is probably a lot like falling down a hill

During the Assassin’s Creed: Origins [official site] demo I played at E3, I pressed the wrong button and thought I’d broken the game. I was trying to switch to my bow while sneaking and I accidentally meditated, causing time to fast forward. The sun wheeled around the sky, sank below the horizon, and night fell. The developer guiding me through the experience – an environmental artist – was slightly taken aback, but we rolled with my mistake and I got an accidental peek at the nightlife of Ptolemaic Egypt. Colour me intrigued.

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Steam summer sale: our giant recommendations list

The Steam summer sale is in full blaze. For a while it even blazed so hot that the servers went on fire and all the price stickers peeled off the games. Either that or the store just got swamped with cheapskates looking for the best bargains. Cheapskates like you! Well, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up some recommendations – both general tips and some newly added staff choices.

Here are the things you should consider owning in your endless consumeristic lust for a happiness which always seems beyond reach. You’re welcome.

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Have You Played… Beetle Crazy Cup?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day, perhaps for all time.

I was pretty new to games reviewing when cheery RPS Magazine tribute magazine PC Gamer handed me Beetle Crazy Cup to review in 2000. I’d been at it for less than a year, and had pretty much exclusively reviewed rubbish. I think they assumed Infogrames’ VW Beetle racing game was going to be ‘bish too, hence its coming my way. Turns out it was brill. I wasn’t really sure what to do. Read the rest of this entry »

The Flare Path: Heard Through An Open Window

“She comes down in the middle of the night and finds him on the sofa pleasuring himself with a plastic Ankylosaurus.”

“Nietzsche was your radical Islam – I get that – but it didn’t turn you into a mass murderer did it? You may have hated the human race for a year or two but you didn’t actively plot their extermination.”

“And these are? Giraffes. Of course! So the nice giraffes are helping the firemen save the people in the burning house?” Read the rest of this entry »

Best PC gaming deals of the week

Oh, boy, the Steam Summer Sale has started. Alright, look, I know that time is precious and every moment spent reading this roundup of the best deals of the week is time not spent perusing Steam, so I’ll just cut to the chase and get to the offers.

We’ve got deals that’ll work in the UK, deals that’ll work in the US and some deals that will work in both the UK and US, as well as presumably many other places. Let’s get started. Read the rest of this entry »

The strange story of the PC’s not-death

Remember when the PC was dying-going-on-dead? Actually, it’s still dying with analysts prognosticating a further five per cent slippage in PC shipments this year. And yet the PC gaming hardware industry hit record sales in 2016, busting the $30 billion barrier in the process. Meanwhile, the market for innovative PC technology that’s at least ostensibly gaming-relevant has gone positively mental. Not that gaming PCs doing better than regular PCs is breaking news. But I wonder how much we’re all actually benefiting from those 18-core CPUs, VR headsets, 240Hz superwide monitors and 1TB SSDs. How much better, in other words, have your gaming PCs really got? Read the rest of this entry »