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Scrolls gift copies photo
Scrolls gift copies

Owners of Mojang's Scrolls can gift a copy to a friend

'Tis the season
Dec 19
// Joshua Derocher
If you own Mojang's Scrolls, you will be able to give a copy to a friend as a gift this holiday season. All you need to do is log into your Mojang account, and click on the "Send to a friend" button. A code will be sent to th...
Assassin's Creed PhysX photo
Assassin's Creed PhysX

Assassin's Creed IV just got a PhysX patch on the PC

Smokier smoke
Dec 19
// Joshua Derocher
If you were thinking that Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag needed more smoke, then you are in luck. An update just came out on the PC that adds PhysX support, so the particle effects can be more complex. In Black Flag this me...
Medieval RPG photo
Medieval RPG

Here's a non-fantasy RPG being made with CryENGINE

Kingdom Come: Deliverance
Dec 19
// Joshua Derocher
The developer Warhorse just announced a new role-playing game, one that won't have monsters and wizards running around. Kingdom Come: Deliverance is a medieval role-playing game being created with the CryENGINE for PC a...
The Yule Lads photo
The Yule Lads

EVE devs dress up as Yule Lads to hand out presents

Iceland must be weird
Dec 19
// Joshua Derocher
I love CCP. They are a bunch of crazy guys, and every time they come out with a video it's always bizarre and amazing. To celebrate the holiday's in EVE Online, the guys at CCP are giving out in-game gifts on an advent calan...

Review: D-Link DGL-5500 Gaming Router

Dec 17 // Joshua Derocher
Product: D-Link DGL-5500 Gaming RouterManufacturer: D-LinkMSRP: $199.99 The D-Link DGL-5500 is a dual band router, with a 2.4GHz band and a 5GHz band. It supports Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS), four gigabit LAN ports, one gigabit WAN port, a USB 2.0 port, and all of the security features that you would expect in a modern router. It has an MSRP of $199.99, which is normal for a high-end router. Setting up the DGL-5500 is very easy. It comes with an installation CD, and if you don't have an optical drive you can access the router's set-up from your web browser. I had it up and running in a few minutes, and the default setup wizard left me with a setup that I haven't needed to mess with since. Basically, if you have been able to set up any other router on your own, you will be able to set this up just fine. Once the router is online, you can access its settings by going to http://dlinkrouter. The interface has been updated from older D-Link products I have used -- it's clean looking and easy to find the settings you need to change. You can clearly see what devices are connected to the network, and how much bandwidth each device is using. You can prioritize devices very easily to make sure the internet is going to where you need it the most. The DGL-5500 is great at showing you where all your bandwidth is going, and how it's being used. A statistics page in the router's settings will show you charts of how much data an app uses, how much time is spent in each app, and the times the apps were active. Apps include most software programs that connect to the web, such as Netflix, Twitter, Steam, Pandora, etc. This would be extremely helpful to anyone who has a bandwidth cap on their internet service. You can also see what apps on each device are using bandwidth, so you can tell how much data your laptop has downloaded from Steam or Netflix. The range on this router is fantastic, even on the 5GHz band. My desktop is a floor above where my router is located, and it's a couple of rooms over with old thick walls that are the enemy of wi-fi signals. A $50 Netgear router was completely unable to provide a good connection upstairs on the 2.5GHz band. Before setting the DGL-5500 up, I was using a Linksys EA2700 Smart Router, and while it had great coverage on the 2.5GHz band all over my apartment, the 5GHz band would only work on the first floor where the router is located. The DGL-5500's 5GHz band covers the whole apartment, even up here in my office. I was shocked, actually.  While the DGL-5500 might not offer speeds that are faster than some other routers, I did notice that my overall experience was smoother when using multiple devices. The DGL-5500 uses a technology called "StreamBoost," which works automatically prioritize your network's bandwidth in an intelligent way. To put it simply, it can tell what data is for your games, or your video streaming, and it will make sure the things that need constant internet will get it. To test out what this thing can handle, I had a PlayStation 3 in the living room streaming Amazon Instant Video, a Roku upstairs in the bedroom streaming video on Plex, my PC was streaming Amazon Instant Video, I had BitTorrent going around 200 kB/s, and I was playing EVE Online. There also about three or four phones hooked up to the network while I was testing it, but they weren't doing anything special. I did not experience any slowdowns anywhere. The video streaming was constantly smooth, and I was still able to browse the web. That test wasn't too far from what our normal internet usage every day. There are four people living in my apartment on the network, and we all rely on the internet for our television watching, so there's usually one to three people streaming video at any given point in the day. The DGL-5500 has been able to handle the load without any issues, which is more than I can say of the Linksys EA2700 I was using before this -- it would start to buckle when two people were streaming video, or I had BitTorrent open. I really love this router. It can withstand the heavy internet usage we have, and it doesn't flinch when ten or more devices are hooked up and are fighting for bandwidth. The speeds are similar to routers you can get for a lot less, but the the extra cost is worth the amazing 5GHz range and for how many devices this thing can handle at once. If you live alone in a small apartment with only two or three devices, then this might be overkill for you. If you live in a larger apartment with other people, then a router of this grade is almost a necessity if you want to keep everyone connected.
D-Link DGL-5500 photo
A high-end router for gamers
Having a good router is a necessity these days. Every electronic device you own connects to the internet, and many play games online and stream HD video. Your PC and consoles are beginning to rely more and more on digital cop...

Eidolon photo

Eidolon is an indie exploration game, here's a trailer

Survive when the humans are dead
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
Eidolon looks fantastic, and it sound like it will be really fun to play. It's set in a "post-human Western Washington", and it's a game that revolves around exploration. The developer's website sets up the game like this: "...
Skyrim mod photo
Skyrim mod

Skyrim mod restores content cut by Bethesda

Cutting Room Floor
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
Skyrim modder Arthmoor managed to find some content that didn't make it into the game's release, and he has done his best to add it back into the game. He released the Cutting Room Floor mod to restore a few NPCs, some quest...
Dota 2 photo
Dota 2

Dota 2 removes sign-up process and is finally open to all

Everyone can play!
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
In case you aren't one of the 611,480 people playing Dota 2 as I write this, you will be happy to know that the game is finally open to everyone. While it officially released this summer, Valve had been slowly allowing more p...
Tomb Raider iOS photo
Tomb Raider iOS

Play the original Tomb Raider on iOS for $0.99

Because why not
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
Square Enix just released the original Tomb Raider for iOS, and it's just $0.99. The old Tomb Raider games were really good, so it's tempting to grab this for this cheap. It comes with the extra chapters from the 1998 re-rele...
Watch Dogs delay photo
Watch Dogs delay

Ubisoft inspired by Rockstar to delay Watch Dogs

They want to make sure it's polished
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
Ubisoft's North American President, Laurent Detoc, says that the company was inspired to delay Watch Dogs because of the success of Grand Theft Auto V. Detoc told IGN recently that "the guys at Rockstar have showed us again t...
Obsidian Kickstarter photo
Obsidian Kickstarter

Obsidian is planning another Kickstarter project soon

It could be an episodic open-world game like Skyrim
Dec 17
// Joshua Derocher
Obsidian's CEO Feargus Urquhart recently spoke with Rock, Paper, Shotgun on the studios plans for another Kickstarter project. The company is already working on Pillars of Eternity, but they don't want that to be the only cla...
PS3 Minecraft photo
PS3 Minecraft

The PlayStation 3 is getting Minecraft on December 17

At least in North America
Dec 16
// Joshua Derocher
Good news PlayStation 3 owners, you will finally be able to play Minecraft tomorrow. The PlayStation blog just announced that Minecraft will be available on the PlayStation 3 in North America on December 17. This version...
38 Studios auction photo
38 Studios auction

Kingdoms of Amalur wasn't sold at 38 Studios auction

But they did sell the Rise of Nations franchise
Dec 16
// Joshua Derocher
The auction for 38 Studios assets happened, and while the Rise of Legends and Rise of Nations franchises sold for $320,000, no one made a good offer for Kingdoms of Amalur. 38 Studios founder Curt Schilling thinks that the se...
Steam Machine photo
Steam Machine

Here are some videos of Steam Machines in action

Hands on with the new system and controller
Dec 16
// Joshua Derocher
Thanks to the magic of YouTube, some of the people lucky enough to receive one of the 300 beta Steam Machines have been able to share their impressions of the system. The OS looks like exactly like Steam's Big Picture Mode, ...

Review: X Rebirth

Dec 12 // Joshua Derocher
X Rebirth (PC)Developer: EgosoftPublisher: EgosoftReleased: November 15, 2013MSRP: $49.99 X Rebirth is an open-ended space exploration game, where you can trade, build stations, command a fleet, engage in dogfights, and become a space-faring mogul who rules over the galaxy. It's a follow-up to the classic X series, which begin in 1999 with X: Beyond the Frontier. It has long been known to be an amazing sandbox series, which usually contains flaws that the community later fixes with mods. The newest games are difficult to get into, and they have a very steep learning curve. X Rebirth was hoping to provide a good starting point for newcomers to the series by adding in station interiors, new trade systems, better ways to quickly move around space, and a handful of other features that no one really seemed to want. There are already mods out from fans to remove most of these features, or overhaul them completely, so that tells you how the changes went over with fans. The first thing you will notice, is that this game runs like a one-legged horse trying to win the Kentucky Derby. And the hilarious thing is that the better your machine is, the worse it could run. Egosoft has come out in the forums saying it didn't really test the game for high-end systems. My machine is decent, despite being a bit dated, and I was constantly dropping down into single-digit frames per second. At best I would get 20 FPS, and that didn't happen very often. On top of bad frame rates, there is constant pausing and stuttering when you leave your ship, enter a highway, or just randomly because the game hates you. [embed]267065:51787:0[/embed] Since it runs so poorly, you would think that this is a graphically impressive game with cutting-edge technology and effects, but it's not. It looks good, and everything is highly detailed, but there is nothing going on to warrant the appalling frame rates. The ship designs are fantastic, and the station exteriors are highly detailed. Flying near a capital ship to destroy its engines reveals how detailed all of the ships are up close, and it's always nice looking when the ships explode into giant balls of fire. I had this amazing moment where I docked my ship in a larger ship during a battle to try to repair my guns, and when I stepped off my ship I could still see the battle happening around me when I looked up. While everything in space looks nice, once you see another character or walk inside a station, you're met with horrible graphics and some bizarre design choices, like having your sidekick's armor have a window for her cleavage, and almost every station has a strip club with freakish looking holo-dancers and posters of crudely-drawn butts. All the characters in the game are poorly animated with bad textures. They look like humanoid robots that were rejected because they scared away children with their twitching and inhuman motions. There are only a dozen or so different character models, and they are repeated over and over again, and they usually have a voice coming out of them that doesn't match the face. When you talk to them they usually contort their necks into an uncomfortable position and stare at you with empty eyes that are fixated on something that isn't you. The interface is a complete mess, and doing anything requires a lot of unnecessary steps. Even selecting menu items requires a double-click most of the time, which is really cumbersome. While flying your ship half the screen is obscured by the ship's consoles, which have very little useful information on them. You also can't freely look around the cockpit, meaning you have to turn the ship if you want to see what's around you. Flight sims in the '90s had better cockpit controls -- at least give me a key to press to look out the side windows. One good example of how bad the interface is how hard it is to set up a trade. First, you need to bring up the menu, then you select the trade menu, then you select the buy screen, then you select the goods you want, then you click "next" to continue, then you select how much you want, and then you can confirm the trade. That was the easy part. From the trade screen, you can see how many trips your trade ship has planned, but you can't see where it's currently going. To see what your active trades are, or to make a change of plans, you have to do that from the ship menu. You have to back up from trade to the main menu then you need to click on your owned property, then you need to bring up the ship you want, then you have to select the captain of the ship, and then you can see and make changes to orders. Just writing all that out confused and frustrated me. To make the awful interface even worse, the game makes no attempt to explain to you how you should do things -- I had to read forums and watch YouTube tutorials to understand how to play X Rebirth. It wasn't just that I didn't know how to do something, most of the time I didn't know what I needed to do. There is no sense of direction, and I usually had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. I never felt like I could go off and do anything I wanted to do, which is the main reason to play a sandbox game. Space games are about exploration, but it's hard to explore when I don't know what I am looking for. I had a hard time getting my ships to jump, because they would call me up and say they were out of fuel. After hunting around on a forum I learned that you have to click on the captain's picture when he calls you to tell them to refuel. This is the only instance in the game where clicking on a portrait brings up a menu, and the game never explains the concept. I still don't grasp it fully, but I was able to finally get my ships to fly. There are two modes to the game: a campaign with a loose story to guide you, and a freeplay mode where you just venture out and do what you want. The freeplay mode is much better, since the story is garbage, but it does nothing to try to teach you how to play. This game isn't for newcomers to the series, no matter what Egosoft is saying. You will have to spend hours researching if you want to understand things, and even then you'll still often find yourself confused. You will always fly one ship, which is a departure from previous games where you could buy new ships for yourself. Flying it is insanely awkward, since the controls are really off. Close your eyes, and imagine playing a good flight sim. Now picture something different, and you are playing X Rebirth. There isn't a sense of momentum when flying, and turns are always too loose or too tight. The ship accelerates and brakes too fast, and I felt like I was flying a paper airplane around. It's similar to playing a first-person shooter and feeling like a floating camera instead of a person. While the player is limited to the same ship, you can still build up a fleet by buying or capturing other ships. These ships can be ordered to follow you around, engage in trade routes, or build space stations for you to rule the galaxy from. Fleet battles look great, and it's fun to watch two giant capital ships go at it while you zip around taking out engines and turrets. Ordering your fleet around suffers from the bad interface, but once you have them in a group you don't have to mess with them too much to keep them following you. The new features in X Rebirth are highways to travel faster, the ability to scan stations to gather information, the ability to leave your ship and walk around, and a new way of trading goods. All of these additions are garbage and I am not even going to bother explaining them, since like I said before they have already been removed or overhauled by mods. Egosoft thought it knew what people would like to see, but fans just want the core features they have always loved about the series. The community has stepped up big time to try to fix up this half-baked game, and there are already a handful of mods out there. Some of them are almost needed to even play X Rebirth. The series is known for its mod support, and you can really change the game for the better with them. It really sucks that the game is so rough that fans are already overhauling the gameplay and graphics, but it is nice to see such support so early on. Ultimately, the modding community could save this game. At its core, X Rebirth is an ambitious game. It's a giant sandbox that offers the player a lot of freedom to go out and do anything, but it's just not ready to play. It's a sandbox filled with turds, and I can't recommend it in its current state. There are some good base assets in the game, and maybe after a year of patches from the developer and mods from the community, this could become something worth playing. Egosoft is usually good about patching its games, but that doesn't excuse the studio from releasing something that's this fundamentally broken. X Rebirth might be worth grabbing in a Steam sale in a couple of years, after 100 patches and with a dozens of mods that create an entirely different game. That game could be fun if you are into modding. As it is right now at launch, X Rebirth is simply a broken, flawed, and almost unplayable mess. It's a shell that has potential, but it's not a working game on its own. Stay far away from it for now, and maybe in a few years it could be worth the time of dedicated fans.
X Rebirth photo
Failure to launch
The X series is known for being a little rough out of the gate, so when X Rebirth came out with some major bugs, no one was really surprised. Egosoft has been releasing a lot of patches, but the game is still borderline unpla...

StarCraft II photo
StarCraft II

StarCraft 2 player gets a US visa for being an 'Athlete'

It looks like pro-gamers are athletes
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
Kim "viOLlet" Dong Hwan has become the first professional StarCraft 2 player to get a visa to come to the United States and compete as an athlete. Kim was cleared for a P-1A visa, which is the type of visa given to internatio...
Europa Universalis IV photo
Europa Universalis IV

Europa Universalis IV is getting its first expansion in

Conquest of Paradise
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
Get ready for some new features in Europa Universalis IV, Paradox's massive grand strategy game, because it's getting an expansion soon. Conquest of Paradise will focus on adding better mechanics for both sides of the conque...
World of Darkness photo
World of Darkness

CCP laid off 15 people working on World of Darkness MMO

The game is still in development though
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
CCP is best known for creating EVE Online, but they have another MMO in the works called World of Darkness, which is based on the popular vampire and werewolf pen and paper games of the same name. CCP told Polygon that they h...
Thief Gold HD textures photo
Thief Gold HD textures

New HD texture pack for Thief Gold looks really good

Play the good one before the new one
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
Thief Gold has a new HD texture pack created by Bentraxx, and it really makes the fourteen year old game look a lot better. The game is bit dated, but this definitely makes it look good for its age. Here's a list of wha...
Cliffy B's next game photo
Cliffy B's next game

Cliff Bleszinski wants to make an arena FPS for the PC

Kids these days don't know about arena shooters
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
Cliff Bleszinski, the guy behind the Gears of War and Unreal games, has an idea for his next game. He talked about his idea on the latest episode of the Pointless podcast. Bleszinski said that he wants to make a game without ...
Wasteland 2 beta photo
Wasteland 2 beta

Wasteland 2 beta out for backers, coming to Steam soon

Go play it already!
Dec 12
// Joshua Derocher
At last, backers of Wasteland 2 can start playing the beta on PC. If you log into your Ranger Center account, you can get a Steam key to start playing. To be eligible for beta access right now, you have to have been one ...
EVE and Dust 514 photo
EVE and Dust 514

EVE Online increased incentive to attack Dust 514 players

Blast the planets!
Dec 11
// Joshua Derocher
EVE Online has been tweaked a bit to change-up how players interact with Dust 514 players. Dust 514 players used to earn orbital strikes be earning points during their match, but now they have to rely on EVE pilots to decide ...
EVE and Twitch photo
EVE and Twitch

EVE Online adds Twitch integration

Stream yourself dying in space
Dec 11
// Joshua Derocher
Joining the ever-growing ranks of games that support Twitch, EVE Online just added in streaming support. Pilots can now activate Twitch streaming right from the Neocom panel by logging into their Twitch account. This function...
Project Eternity photo
Project Eternity

Project Eternity has a name and a gameplay trailer

Pillars of Eternity
Dec 11
// Joshua Derocher
Project Eternity, Obsidian's old-school PC role-playing game that was Kickstarted last year, is now called Pillars of Eternity. Along with getting an actual name, Obsidian released the first gameplay trailer, and opened up ...
Entropy photo

Battlestar Galactica Online devs working on new space MMO

Out on Steam Early Access
Dec 10
// Joshua Derocher
The developers behind Battlestar Galactica Online are working on a new space game, called Entropy. Entropy is out now on Steam Early Access, so you can check it out for $19.99 if you want to. It looks a lot like EVE Online t...
EverQuest Next photo
EverQuest Next

SOE explains what EverQuest Next Landmark actually is

And it looks awesome
Dec 10
// Joshua Derocher
SOE just released a quick video that answers the question, "what is EverQuest Next Landmark?" Well, it's a game of exploration, monsters to fight, and building just about anything you want. The video shows off building a hou...
Minecraft 1.7.4 photo
Minecraft 1.7.4

Minecraft 1.7.4 is out now with Twitch streaming support

Watch me stack blocks!
Dec 10
// Joshua Derocher
Minecraft version 1.7.4 is out today, and this update will let you stream to Twitch with a simple key press. To set this up, you'll need to link your Twitch and Mojang accounts together, which only takes a few minutes. Just h...
GTA Online photo
GTA Online

GTA Online's content creation tool is out today

I can't wait to see what people come up with
Dec 10
// Joshua Derocher
Get ready to create your own content for GTA Online, because the game's content creation tool is out today. You will be able to create deathmatches, team deathmatches, races, GTA races, and rally races. Any player created mis...
Torment combat photo
Torment combat

Torment fans vote for turn-based combat in Numenera

Combat will be like Wasteland 2's
Dec 09
// Joshua Derocher
inXile asked Kickstarter backers what type of combat they would like to see in Torment: Tides of Numenera, and turn-based came out slightly in the lead. The votes were so close that inXile said it was basically a tie, but the...
League of Legends photo
League of Legends

Pro League of Legends players can stream anything again

Riot changed its mind
Dec 09
// Joshua Derocher
Earlier this week Riot decided to block any pro League of Legend player from streaming any competing MOBA. Riot has now decided to reverse this decision, and players can stream any game they wish. Riot says that it originally...

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