Ark: Survival Evolved Performance Update Hatching Friday

I hope the dinosaur wins tbh. Look at those horrible louts!

Given what happened to the last open-world multiplayer survival game with dinosaur-riding, I’ve been a little reserved about Ark: Survival Evolved [official site]. But after a week on Steam Early Access, the game’s sitting happily in Steam’s top-ten most-played games list and – complaints about bugs, AI, and performance aside – seems to be going down fairly well with players.

A hearty update is due to arrive later this week, bringing the amphibious Spinosaurus to fight and ride, performance improvements, tribal governance systems, new structures to build, and the ability for flying creatures to pick up smaller creatures. Ooh! Just like in the movies!

Read the rest of this entry »

Procedural Cyberpunk CorpWars: Hollowpoint

Hollowpoint is a cooperative shooter (supporting solo play or up to 4 teamchums) set in a future where everything has gone horribly wrong. First there’s life extension. That sounds like a good thing but it’s only for the rich. Throw AI and advanced robotics into the mix, and the poor end up with no jobs, no security and lives that are nastier, more brutish and shorter than ever (relatively speaking). Then there’s a big old war, a bunch of smaller civil wars, a whole load of destructive storms and – BAM! Megacorps rule the world. Tale as old as time.

You’ll build a team of operatives who work for those Megacorps, performing dynamic missions in procedurally generated levels. Control is third person on a 2d plane, shooting into the screen. There’s a story trailer below, with some in-game footage at the end.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sean Bean’s Winter Vacation: Brief Thoughts On Kholat

In Kholat [official site], every day is a snow day. I’ve spent a couple of hours wandering around in the game’s open world and I’ve mostly been looking at drifts, flurries and heaps of the white stuff. Occasionally celebrity narrator Sean Bean says something, sounding weary even for a Yorkshireman, but he’s mostly been quiet since picking his way through the introduction (at one point the subtitles suggest “extraterrestrials” might be involved in the Dyatlov Pass Incident on which the game is based; Sean’s too practical-minded for that sort of nonsense so he goes with “wild animals” instead).

I’m supposed to be using my map and compass to find points of interest, referencing a list of coordinates, but I’m not sure that I care to go on. I’m snowblind.

Read the rest of this entry »

Grey Goo DLC Free For A Few More Hours

Quick! Hurry! If you own Grey Goo [official site], don’t even wait to read the rest of this post: fire up Steam or go over here and download this DLC for free.

Now that you’ve done that, I’ll explain more. Petroglyph have launched the first DLC for their pretty solid RTS, in the shape of a three-mission mini-campaign, and very kindly are giving it free to current Grey Goo owners who download it in the first two days. Problem: it came out on Tuesday, so you only have until 5pm (7 hours after this post goes up) to grab it. Sorry for the tardy news!

Read the rest of this entry »

[A Joke About Wangs]: Shadow Warrior 2

Shadow Warrior 2: Wang Harder. 2 Wang 2 Warrior. Shadow Warrior: The Secret of the Wang. Shadow Warrior And The Last Wang/Raiders of the Lost Wang/Kingdom of the Crystal Wang/Wang of Doom. Judgement Wang. Shadow Warrior VII: The Wang Awakens. Shadow Warrior: The Wang of Ultron.

Wang World.

Evidence points toward an official Shadow Warrior 2 [official site] announcement in the near future (and, hey, isn’t E3 in the near future?). I have collected the evidence in a small pile, along with some lint and pistachio shells.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dote Night: Runes And Masteries With Riv

Spending all my IP, don't mind me.

Part of a miscellany of serious thoughts, animal gifs, and anecdotage from the realm of MOBAs/hero brawlers/lane-pushers/ARTS/tactical wizard-em-ups. One day Pip might even tell you the story of how she bumped into Na’Vi’s Dendi at a dessert buffet cart. THIS WEEK, however, she will be glaring at the runes and masteries of League of Legends!

In a few minutes of downtime at the recent MSI event League of Legends expert and caster Rivington “RivingtonThe3rd” Bisland III sat with me for a beginner-friendly Q&A focusing on Runes and Masteries. Both are ways to give a little boost to your Champions which you set up before a game starts. Runes provide little bonuses which you can stack in order to increase their effect. You put the runes into pages in order to set up slightly different builds, then pick one of these pages to use when you go into a match depending on how you want to play. Masteries are similar but rather than you just selecting the bonuses you fancy and plugging them into vacant spots you’ll need to follow a progression tree, adding points strategically in order to access particular bonuses further down the line.

“Overall they have a slight impact on the game but they can definitely make or break a situation where you both come down to about 10 HP and you’re trying to win that battle,” is how Riv sees runes.

Read the rest of this entry »

Ninja Theory’s Hellblade: Delicately Hacking Inner Demons

A Celtic warrior fighting monsters with her sword is what I’d expect in the E3 trailer for Ninja Theory’s Hellblade [official site] and yup, it sure has those. A little more surprising is an accompanying video about the character’s struggles with psychosis, depression, anxiety, and hallucinations, with a professor University of Cambridge talking about his work consulting on the game. Huh! So sure, it is about slaying monsters, but it seems they’re trying to sensitively handle a terrible illness. While still getting to slay monsters, obvs.

Read the rest of this entry »