Posts Tagged ‘Arkane Studios’

Journey Into Misery: my desperate, flailing attempts to make Dishonored 2 run on my laptop

Dishonored 2 [official site] is a wonderful game, but in terrible shape on PC – not for all of us, but for many of us. The most widely-reported issue is its lurching framerate on a suitably-specced PC, and that’s been severely hampering my attempts to play it on my desktop (AMD R9 Nano, FWIW). As well as making the general sense of motion disrupted and even uncomfortable, I have bungled strangles because the game suddenly spasms underneath me. I HAVE BUNGLED STRANGLES. In desperation, I sought to instead run the thing on a three-year-old laptop with a very weeny AMD GPU, just in case Dishonored 2 was playable at lowest settings.

And so began my nightmare.
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Wot I Think: Dishonored 2

Dishonored 2 [official site] creates a greater sense of place than just about any other game I’ve played. That’s true whether you’re standing on a balcony, looking out toward a distant objective across the chaos of the city streets between you and it, or picking through an apartment building, floor by floor, and seeing all the signs of life you’d expect to find. It’s a remarkable game, and in many ways a true heir to the legacy of Looking Glass’ immersive sims, and it features some of the most spectacular world-building you’ll ever see.

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Dishonored 2 PC Patch Due ‘In The Coming Days’

If you’ve had your sneaking trousers cleaned and pressed in preparation for a weekend of Dishonored 2 [official site], you’ll want to follow Adam’s performance-enhancing tips first. It sounds like we need need to wait a few days before we see an official patch addressing some of those performance problems, you see. Publishers Bethesda Softworks have popped up a small notice to acknowledge the problems some players are reporting — our own Alec included — and say they’re working on a patch.

Bethesda say we can expect this “in the coming days”, which sounds a bit ominous considering how pre-apocalyptic everything’s looking lately. Read the rest of this entry »

A Few Petty Grievances About Dishonored 2

I hate to be the Dunwall Downer, to be honest. Any other week I perhaps wouldn’t do this, but bloody hell, what a week. (Not you too, Leonard. Not you too). I desperately needed something to feel good about, and I’d hoped Dishonored 2 [official site] would be it. It still might be, but I’m one of those who is enduring a particularly bad dose of its increasingly notorious technical woes. A knock-on effect of that is that, because my immersion is generally and near-constantly disrupted by the shonky performance, design and presentation faults which might otherwise have been minor seem that much more glaring.
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High Chaos: Dishonored 2 Performance Woes & Tips

I’m still working my way through Dishonored 2 [official site] so that I can bring you a full, detailed review, but with the game officially released today (it was available yesterday for people who preordered), I’ve tried to gather as much information as possible about the performance issues that have seen the game’s Steam rating take a bit of a hammering. As is often the case, given the number of reports and conflicting data, it’s difficult to figure out precisely what to do if the game doesn’t runs smoothly, but I’ve done my own digging and Bethesda have released some tips, while director Harvey Smith is acknowledging the issues on Twitter and says Arkane are working on a new patch.

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Dishonored 2: Everyone Who Died In The First Mission Of My Non-Lethal Playthrough

I see you!

Ah, Dishonored 2 [official site]. A chance to right the wrongs with my approach to stealth in the original Dishonored. A clean slate where no-one has yet been massacred and no guards have been panic-killed and the guy in the chair in that room didn’t get accidentally stabbed because of a previous stabbing session which left me with a bit of a hair-trigger stab-finger. It was thus reassured that I have embarked on my non-lethal playthrough of Dishonored 2.

Six people have died so far.

I can definitely explain…

I’ve tried to keep the following spoiler-free but you might still want to leave reading it until you’ve played that first mission if you’re worried about accidental environmental spoilers?

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Dishonored 2 Is The Thief Successor We Deserve

I’ve been playing Dishonored 2 [official site] for nine hours but I’m not here to spoil any surprises for you, so don’t worry about precisely how much I’ve seen or what beans I might spill. What I want to do is to reassure you that developers Arkane haven’t fluffed their lines with this sequel. Quite the opposite in fact – they’re firing on all cylinders.

Even if the remaining levels are so badly designed that I find them intolerable, and there’s absolutely no reason to believe that would be the case, I’ve already explored enough beautifully realised and densely packed areas to see this as a sequel that understands what its predecessor did well, and knows precisely how to do it better. Here, with no spoilers, are my thoughts on what I’ve seen so far.

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Dishonored 2 Trailer Champions A Cutthroat Empress

I know how much you like slitting throats, so I got this Dishonored 2 [official site] launch trailer for you. It’s got a lot of your stabby bloodshed in it, but also some other powers available to the discerning murderer, including ‘annoying flies’, the ‘mini warp’ and ‘becoming a living avatar of chaos’. It’s nothing we haven’t seen before but there’s some bits of plot thrown in for good measure. Which is good because plot is your second favourite thing after slitting throats.
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Dishonored 2: A Closer Look At The Art Of Karnaca

Dishonored 2

With Dishonored 2‘s [official site] release hovering on the gaming horizon, I wanted to take a closer look at Arkane’s sequel and its distinctive aesthetic with art director, Sébastien Mitton. Our conversation touched on fashion influences, how you approach the art of a sequel, the role of tech advangements and why it’s important that Dishonored 2 went with Victorian city-building instead of a modern grid. As ever with these art-focused features, you can click on the images to see a larger version. Read the rest of this entry »

Dishonored 2 System Requirements Sneak In

We’re barrelling towards the end of the year, which means – oh gosh! – we’re ten days from Dishonored 2 [official site]. Publishers Bethesda today announced that Arkane’s supernatural stealth-o-action game has “gone gold”, which is a technical industry term for the dev team being allowed a 5-minute toilet break for a wee (to ‘go gold’) before they return to their desks and start on the first patch. This also means enough is locked in to announce system requirements and gab about graphics options. Onwards! Read the rest of this entry »

Dark Messiah Of Might & Magic Is Ten Years Old Today

Kick me in the pants, Dark Messiah of Might & Magic is ten years old. That’s ten years since Arkane released their first-person fantasy game about kicking men (or orcs) in the pants. And about slicking the ground with ice using magic, then watching men (or orcs) slip on it and fall off cliffs. Or about being knocked down yourself and being able to see your pants, because it was a rare-at-the-time first-person game in which you had a body.

It was good, except for the bits that weren’t, and in its creative slapstick murder there lies some of the roots of Dishonored. We’ve gathered a few thoughts below.

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The Aliens Are Already Here: Prey’s Alternate History

We don’t know a great deal about Prey [official site], severed as it seems to be from the previous game called Prey and the half-formed sequel that died on the vine. The player character can be a man or a woman, there are shadowy, goopy aliens, you can turn into a mug, and it’s being made by Arkane, the studio behind Dishonored. Prepare to learn a whole lot more.

A new video, using rather fetching animation, tells us the backstory of the space station Talos I (the game’s setting), the corporation that owns it, and the creatures that live there. To get to the future though, we need to go back to the mid-twentieth century and an alternative cold war. Read the rest of this entry »

Meet Prey’s Female Non-Graham Protagonist

I’m certainly up for transforming into a mug in the new Prey [official site], Arkane’s upcoming ‘reimagining’ of Human Head’s 2006 sci-fi FPS, but I was less sold on my default form being our own Graham Smith. It’s not right, that. I don’t agree that games are (or should be) escapism but playing my own boss – the man who chases me around the virtual office with a virtual broom every day – just isn’t what I want.

Good news: if we’d like, we’ll also be able to play Prey as a lady. Her name is Morgan Yu too. And she doesn’t look like anyone I work with. Hear her in a new/old trailer.

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The Beautiful Cruelty Of Dishonored 2

Dishonored 2‘s fourth mission is supposedly about infiltrating the home of Kirin Jindosh, a sadistic inventor who must be bumped off or “neutralised” before he unleashes an army of automatons upon the world. But what you’re really doing in the Clockwork Mansion is invading a brain. Having already seen excerpts from a developer playthrough, I had a sense that the building’s rearrangeable mechanical layouts might reflect the character of its architect, much as Bioshock and Portal’s labyrinths do GlaDOS and Andrew Ryan. I was unprepared, however, for how extravagantly Jindosh’s neuroses infest the place, or for how cruel it feels to slip through the cracks in his amazing creation – past the velvet drapes, beneath the lacquered facades and into the whirring schematics of his subconsciousness.

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Dishonored 2 Shows Eight Mins Of Mechanical Mansion

Good news: a new Dishonored 2 [official site] gameplay trailer is out, with a pleasing eight-minute chunk of Emily murdering her way through a place we’ve seen a bit of before. What I saw was quite nice, but I started peeking through my fingers then stopped watching because I’d still like to be surprised by Arkane’s sneak-o-FPS.

Plbbbbbrfffff news: those silly sausages at Bethesda have announced that they’ll release the game a day early – to people who pre-order it. You cheeky bunch!

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Hone Your Skills With Creative Kills: Dishonored 2

Have a whale of a time with…no. These creative kills are whale-y good. Oh no no no.

I understand the appeal of playing a game like Dishonored 2 [official site] without killing a single person, I really do, but Arkane are sorely tempting my no harm, nn foul-festering-bloodfly-feeding-frenzy policy. A new video shows both Emily and Corvo using their supernatural skills to create deftly calculated carnage. There are doppelgangers, body-swaps, blink-kicks that send people flying through the air like footballs, and combinations of time manipulation, razor traps and vertical violence that make a stab to the back seem so simple as to be uncouth.

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Dishonored 2: Happy Hour With Corvo Attano

Let it be known that Adam Smith is my arch-enemy, and if his body is found floating in Manchester Ship Canal with a dagger in its back any time soon, you know who to blame. Unless you’re a police officer, in which case it was definitely his dog that did it.

The reason for my Smithsonian belligerence? There I was, doing my best not find out much about Dishonored 2 [official site] in order that I can go in blind, but he lobs a new trailer focusing on returning Dishonored 1 protagonist Corvo into the RPS work Slack and says he’s too busy to post it. Which means I have to. Which means I have to watch it. Which means I now known things about Dishonored 2. Which means I need to buy a dagger.

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Dishonored 2 Gamescom Trailer Shows Emily’s Skillz

There will be many ways to play Dishonored 2 [official site], rewarding players for stealth and more brazen maneuvers both. We got a glimpse of some of Corvo’s more aggressive skills at QuakeCon. Now, with Gamescom festivities well underway, Arkane gives us a glimpse at what empress Emily Kaldwin has up her sleeve, and she is easily just as vicious. Take a look!

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You Turn Into A Mug When You Play Arkane’s Prey

I don’t mean that as a totally unprovoked British insult. I mean you really will become a mug when you play Arkane Studios’ revamp of Prey [official site]. A gameplay trailer shown at Gamescom has given us a glimpse of the powers available to protagonist Morgan, and one of them is to turn yourself into inanimate objects – say, a coffee mug – and then wobble around like the dancing toaster in Ghostbusters II, enough to launch yourself through small gaps. Come see it in action.

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Dishonored 2: QuakeCon’s High-Chaos Corvo Info

Dishonored 2

Looks like Dishonored 2 [official site] got some new gameplay footage at QuakeCon. Not being at QuakeCon and with the footage not having leaked (that I can see, anyway) I’m making do with GIFS! and a DESCRIPTIVE BLOG ENTRY! in order to get a feel for a high-chaos Corvo playthrough:

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