Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft Studios’

Minecraft Winton gets Stranger Things skin pack

Nostalgic horrorshow Stranger Things returned for a second season on Friday, you might have heard, and Minecraft celebrated its return with a Stranger Things DLC skin pack for the Windows 10 edition. I’m not normally jazzed about licensed skins but I was surprised by: 1) How well-done and recognisable characters are; 2) Quite how many secondary characters were Minecraftised. Also, I want to use this space to declare that Steve is the best character on Stranger Things. Anyway! The pack contains 52 skins for players to wear, including a variety of outfits for the main characters.

Have a look in this here trailer, though you might not want to if you’re avoiding even minor spoilers until you’ve finished watching season 2. Read the rest of this entry »

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition delayed into 2018

Happy birthday, Age of Empires! The historical real-time strategy series turned 20 on Sunday, and the party was supposed to keep on rolling through to Thursday and the launch of launch of Age of Empires: Definitive Edition [official site]. Alas, the revamped and prettied-up release of the first game has been delayed at short notice. It’s now expected in “early 2018”. Sounds like one hold-up is a change of heart over quite how much to change. Remember, AoE: it’s your party and you can cry if you want to. Read the rest of this entry »

Zim zam zoom! Forza Motorsport 7 released

Slam in your Top Gear Seriously Cool Driving Music CD, slip on your perforated suede driving gloves, and pull that lever no the other one you’ve made the lights go bright pull the one that makes the car do going, because Forza Motorsport 7 [official site] is now out for Windows 10. This is the first core game in Turn 10’s fancy racing series to properly come PC, chasing the cut-down Forza 6 Apex and open-world spin-off Horizon 3. It has many hundreds of cars, dozens of tracks, and silly costumes aplenty. Read the rest of this entry »

Vintage spaceship FPS-RTS Allegiance free on Steam

Microsoft’s vintage multiplayer spaceship FPS-RTS Allegiance [official site], which I’m told is one of the best space games, is now up free on Steam for your convenience. This is really FreeAllegiance, the version which fans have maintained since Microsoft open-sourced the game in 2004, so this being free isn’t new but it is handy. Hopefully exposure to a wider audience will help rebuild the playerbase too – which has dwindled but impressively is still kicking after 17 years. Read the rest of this entry »

Killer Instinct punches onto Steam and Windows 7

Monstrous pugilists including aliens, cyborgs, a mummy, a velociraptor, and a bona fide Battle Toad throw down in Killer Instinct [official site], a revival of the ’90s fighting game series. It first hit PC last year but was exclusive to Windows 10 and its store, which is always a bit of a downer. Now folks who use Windows 7 or prefer Steam can now join in the brawl, as Killer Instinct has swapped its old shackles for a set with a longer chain. Read the rest of this entry »

Forza 7 demo screeches onto Windows 10

Parp parp! A demo for Forza Motorsport 7 [official site] is waiting outside, inviting us to pootle around three tracks for free. The full game will launch in October but the demo is here early, packing three tracks, three cars, and some dramatic weather conditions. The demo is available through Microsoft’s Store and yup, it does require Windows 10. Read the rest of this entry »

Halo is superbly re-imagined in fan-made project SPV3

halospv31

Halo has always been a hard sell on PC, but with the Destiny 2 introducing a once-neglected audience to a world of floaty jumps and immensely satisfying shotguns, Bungie has fully extended the olive branch to once-spurned PC gamers. Fitting, then, the week prior to Destiny’s beta saw the release of SPV3, a massively expanded fan-made remake of the original Halo over ten years in the making.

Based on (and working miracles with) Gearbox’s wonky port of the original Halo, SPV3 re-envisions the first game as a direct followup to prequel Halo: Reach, patching in new and familiar enemies, weapons and vehicle types, along with gameplay features from later titles such as vehicle hijacking and suit-power modules, and a few entirely new gubbins. Aside from a few visual low-points it’s remarkably pleasant to look at. Not quite as pretty as 343’s official HD remastering, but no slouch for a 16-year-old game. There’s even an FOV slider.

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Age of Empires 4 coming from Company of Heroes devs

After returning to Age of Empires II for an ‘HD’ re-release and several years of new expansions, reviving the long-dormant real-time strategy series, Microsoft have finally announced a brand new instalment. Age of Empires IV [official site] is in the works at Relic Entertainment, the folks best known for the Company of Heroes, Homeworld, and Dawn of War games. What a treat! And what a surprise.

Microsoft also revealed a release date for Age of Empires: Definitive Edition, the revamp of the first game. AND they confirmed that Definitive Editions of 2 and 3 will follow. Strat-o-rama! Read the rest of this entry »

Crackdown 3 delayed into 2018

The open-world supercop superfights of Crackdown 3 [official site] need a little more time to become more super, and so has been delayed. It was due on November 7th but has been pushed back into spring 2018. Before then, it was due in 2016. The delay is because the makers want Crackdown 3 to be a good game but it needs more time, yeah? The usual reason for a delay. The usue. The ushe? The usge? The uzhe? The youzhe? The yuzh? The yoozh? The üse? The /juːʒ/. Point is: Crackdown 3 is delayed because making games is difficult and making good games is moreso. Read the rest of this entry »

Final Fantasy XV(‘s car) comes to PC via Forza Horizon 3

Final Fantasy XV is sadly still not announced for PC, but a large lump from it is soon coming here in a roundabout way. Microsoft today announced that Prince Noctis’s car, the Regalia, will soon escape the fantasy world and come free to the Australia of Forza Horizon 3 [official site]. Turn 10 Studios have rebuilt the car in Forza so folks can race and roam our world just like their favourite anime boyband. The car’s due to arrive on Tuesday, August 1st, and to get it you’ll simply need to have played FH3 by then. Read the rest of this entry »

Sea of Thieves’ storms, skeletons and treasure hunting

Pirates, the most untrustworthy of the Cowboy-Pirate-Zombie triumvirate in charge of the videogame industry, are getting their fill of the E3 booty this year. While Ubisoft revealed Skull and Bones, Microsoft have shown off more of the type of thing you’ll be doing in their online co-op plunder-em-up Sea of Thieves [official site]. You can see a Scottishly narrated (and highly scripted) example of a treasure hunt reaching its stormy conclusion in this trailer below deck.
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State of Decay 2 brings all the zombies to the yard

State of Decay 2

Watching the State of Decay 2 [official site] trailer which came out of E3 it got me thinking about how focused the games industry is on the human undead. Sure there are sometimes a few pets or whatnot which appear sometimes in a horror movie-ish way – this thing which was cute is now scary – but why aren’t people resurrecting dinosaurs? Is this a comment on whether a T-rex has a soul?

Anyway, State of Decay 2 is a multiplayer zombie survival game with no dinosaurs (as far as I can tell) so let’s take a look: Read the rest of this entry »

Crackdown 3 trailer brings the boom, Terry Crews

Crackdown 3

Confession: I haven’t played any of the open world action-adventure Crackdown series and the Crackdown 3 trailer (which you can watch after the jump) left me none the wiser on a lot of different fronts. That’s why I went to Wikipedia. However that was about 7 minutes ago so obviously I’m now reading about the ancient belief in swan songs being this beautiful song a swan sings before death.

Here’s Crackdown 3 [official site] which is approx 50% being shouted at by Terry Crews and 50% destructive running: Read the rest of this entry »

Minecraft Win 10 getting a new(er) look

The most recognisable game of the modern era is getting a new look. Sorta. Mojang have announced some graphics upgrades for Minecraft [official site], which will keep those old blocks but fancy everything up with new lighting including fancier shadows and god rays. This is Microsoft’s own Windows 10-only version of Minecraft, mind – the one which started as the Pocket Edition. The original Java version, which is developed as separate game, will keep its old look. Mojang are also adding cross-platform multiplayer between the Winton, console, pocket telephone, and VR versions. Here, check out the new look in this trailer: Read the rest of this entry »

Forza Motorsport 7 announced for Windows 10

Forza Motorsport 7 [official site] is racing to Windows 10 on October 3rd, Microsoft have announced during their E3 announcement blowout. This time around, we’ll get the actual full and proper version of the race ’em up on PC, not a cut-down freebie like Forza 6 Apex. They’re making it to take advantage of the fancy new Xbox model, the Xbox One X, so it’s looking a right pretty one. Here, check out the announcement trailer: Read the rest of this entry »

Gears of War 4 getting Horde Mode update and free trial

Gears of War 4 header

Next week will be a busy one for Gears of War 4‘s [official site] scarred soldiers. First, its ever-popular Horde Mode is getting a big update, and second, those who haven’t yet had the joy of chainsawing through a DeeBee’s face will be able to do so for free as part of a time-limited trial.

The Rise of the Horde update will introduce three skills for each of the five classes, two maps and new loot drops (see all the grisly detail here). Read the rest of this entry »

Deck-based beat ’em up Phantom Dust out now free

Phantom Dust is one of those games that lots of people talk about but nobody I know actually bought back in the day. Originally released for the Xbox None in 2004, it’s a 3D fighting game set in destructible environments. The twist is that all of your character’s abilities are determined by a deck of cards, so you can switch in new attacks, blocks and specials when you earn/buy new cards.

Today Microsoft re-released it free on both Windows 10 and Xbox One, with cards available as microtransactions. You can, I believe, unlock every card in the game by playing. Here’s a video from Microsoft explaining how it works.

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Wheels on fire: Forza Horizon 3’s Hot Wheels DLC out

Vertical roads, loop-the-loops, rings of fire, smashzones, and other such wackiness has arrived in Forza Horizon 3 [official site] with the launch of its Hot Wheels expansion yesterday. It adds several of Mattel’s toy cars as well as a new portion of the world filled with those orange stunt tracks. As a Trackmania fan, I’m delighted to see such silliness spread to other racing games.

While the Hot Wheels expansion costs money, a big update is out now free for all players. It brings support for another 21 steering wheel controllers, performance improvements, and more graphics options for low-end PCs. Read the rest of this entry »

Forza Horizon 3 going wacky with Hot Wheels expansion

TrackMania-style kooky racing is coming to Forza Horizon 3 [official site] in May with an expansion styled after Mattel’s Hot Wheels toy cars. Horizoneers will get to roll along walls and leap through fire on some delightfully unrealistic tracks in snazzy new cars. I am always in favour of these shenanigans in every single driving game. Even serious sims should add loop-de-loops and backflips so we can watch millions of Euros of car crash and burn.

Another patch is in the works too, bringing performance improvements and support for a wider range of steering wheel peripherals. Read the rest of this entry »

Hayla, oh hayla shayla: Halo Wars 2 demo released

You’re read Wot Fraser Brown thinks of Halo Wars 2 [official site], right? That Creative Assembly’s real-time strategy game set in the world of John Torode-177, the Master Chef, is a bit weird as an RTS designed for a console but quite fun all the same? Something that might be worth a crack to see if you take a fancy to it. Don’t go spending £50 to find out (fifty quid!) as it now has a demo out on the Windows Store. For Windows 10 only, of course. Read the rest of this entry »