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AC Syndicate photo
AC Syndicate

Ubisoft: No second screen experience for Assassin's Creed Syndicate


Getting further and further from Unity
May 28
// Brett Makedonski
Plenty of publishers are high on the second screen experience, but Ubisoft's coming down from that -- well, at least a little. The next installment in the Assassin's Creed franchise won't come paired with a companion app...
Terraria 1.3 photo
Terraria 1.3

Terraria 1.3 has mine carts and a release date: June 30


Terraria jumps the shark
May 28
// Darren Nakamura
Every time a new Terraria update trailer comes out, I find myself watching and rewatching it to try to pick out things that are new. The most obvious one in this 1.3 trailer is the mine cart. Now that it's here, it surprises...

PC Port Report: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

May 22 // Patrick Hancock
[Note: Screenshots and video used in this post are taken from my experience with the game.] Tested on: Intel i7-4770k 3.50 GHz, 8GB of RAM, Geforce GTX 970, Windows 7. Framerate measured with FRAPS. I'd be remiss if I didn't address the now-infamous trailer of the game that incorrectly showed what it would look like back in 2013. The developers have since downgraded what the game can do, and have addressed the issue. There are lots of elements to this and it isn't as simple as "downgraded because consoles" or "they couldn't afford it," but the end result is still the same. Regardless of that trailer, The Witcher 3 still looks phenomenal. In order to achieve 60 frames per second with my setup at 1080p, I needed to play with the settings a bit. Most things were kept at the Ultra settings, except for the foliage and shadows, which were turned down to High. The game stays consistently above 60 FPS for me now, even during combat and most in-game cutscenes. Some cutscenes are evidently capped at 30 FPS, which is offputting and incredibly noticeable. The biggest setting to turn off in order to achieve a good framerate is HairWorks. With HairWorks on, hair does looks absolutely stunning and is perhaps the best rendering of hair I've ever come across, though up close it's still a bit funky looking. There are three options for HairWorks: on, Geralt-only, and off. If fully on, even the monsters and Geralt's horse will have HairWorks-quality hair. However, even when I had this on "Geralt only," the framerate would fluctuate between 30 and 50 at any given moment. Yes, the hair looks great, but it is not worth the huge dip in framerate. Another option to be aware of is the "Hardware Mouse." It's located under Options in the Video section for some reason, and anyone playing with a keyboard and mouse is likely going to want to turn this option on. Doing so disables mouse acceleration, essentially making the mouse "feel" like it is supposed to. Many of the .ini files located in the installation folder can also be edited to further customize many of the options. [embed]292553:58627:0[/embed] There's some strange odds and ends in the options to take note of. To turn on unlimited FPS, the FPS slider needs to be all the way to the left. The middle option is 30 FPS, and the right option is 60. For those playing on a big television screen via Big Picture Mode or something similar, be aware that the font size is rather small, and the HUD size does not get any bigger, only smaller. In fact, there's only two sizes for HUD size: Large and Small. Controlling Geralt with a keyboard and mouse is somewhat clunky. Turning is awkward and slow, and managing to interact with a specific object or NPC can be a struggle. Combat on a mouse and keyboard feels fluid, at least. Controlling Geralt with a controller simply feels better, all things considered. It's not that controlling him with a keyboard and mouse is awful, but there's an unfortunate feeling of "this just isn't right." Switching to a controller input is as simple as hitting any button on a connected controller. As soon as the game detects a controller input, everything is switched to controller prompts and the game immediately recognizes it. The same goes with switching back to the keyboard. The responsiveness of switching is fantastic, and future PC game designers better take note. The keyboard keys can be remapped, except for movement. The WASD keys are set in stone. When using a controller, all of the buttons are locked in at the default assignments; there is no remapping of any of the buttons. Since the PC release, there has already been a couple of large patches to help improve performance and fix bugs. CD Projekt RED has always put a lot of focus on the PC community, and that certainly still seems to be the case with The Witcher 3. More patches are on the way, and despite the console-esque nature of the third iteration, I would not expect the game to be neglected on PC going forward. It's also important to note that, apparently, it is coming to SteamOS/Linux. There was a banner on Steam saying as much, but CD Projekt RED has not commented on the Linux situation. Currently, the game is only available for Windows. Some users have been reporting crashes on their systems, but I have yet to encounter a single one. Mods are still in their infancy, but they are there. Mostly small game tweaks at the moment, but the toolkit is evidently on its way. It took a couple of years to get the official modding toolkit out for The Witcher 2, but it has been promised to come out sooner for the latest installment. Plain and simple, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is a great PC port. Whether or not it should have ever been a "port" in the first place is a separate discussion, but what's presented here to the consumer is thoroughly enjoyable. Oh. and you can skip all the splash screens when booting up. 10/10, would port again.
Witcher 3 on PC photo
Gwent Simulator 2015
The Witcher is an interesting series on PC. The first game was a PC experience through and through: you could pause the action at any time and movement was mapped to mouse clicks. The second was way more action-oriented ...

H1Z1 cheaters photo
H1Z1 cheaters

Daybreak bans thousands of H1Z1 cheaters


Boo hoo, you're breaking my heart
May 19
// Nic Rowen
Nearly 25000 cheaters just got the permanent boot from H1Z1. According to Daybreak president John Smedley's Twitter, the purge targeted cheaters using ESP hacks, a cheat designed to reveal other player's location and status a...
Grand Theft Auto V photo
Grand Theft Auto V

GTA 5 physical sales top 5 million in UK alone


And that's not even counting downloads
May 18
// Vikki Blake
Grand Theft Auto V has sold over 5 million copies in the UK. The figures are confirmed by chart company GfK Chart-Track and don't even include download sales (meaning the squillions of recent Steam purchas...
No Man's Sky photo
No Man's Sky

Sony is treating No Man's Sky as a first-party release


Sony's pouring resources into this one
May 15
// Laura Kate Dale
No Man's Sky is not strictly speaking a Sony-exclusive game, but you might be forgiven for thinking it is permanently exclusive considering how ferociously the company is marketing it: prominent E3 press conference space, fin...
ARK: Survival Evolved photo
ARK: Survival Evolved

ARK: Survival Evolved looks like Day-Z with dinosaurs


Dinosaurs finally getting their due
May 11
// Brett Makedonski
Open-world survival simulators are nothing new in the world of videogames, but so many of them tackle the same subject material. New developer Studio Wildcard has just announced a title that takes that well-tread fear of per...
GTA V mods photo
GTA V mods

This is why it's good we aren't getting our GTA V mods taken away


Give me mods, or give me death!
May 08
// Brett Makedonski
Life, liberty, and the pursuit of modding. Those are our inalienable rights as human beings. Rockstar can't take those from us. Good thing it's not going to try. Besides, I'm pretty sure the right to bear mods is protected b...
Arma 3 free weekend photo
Arma 3 free weekend

Military sim Arma 3 free to play this weekend, DayZ on sale


Let's get all ghillied up
May 07
// Jordan Devore
Now through Sunday, Bohemia Interactive is hosting a free weekend for its open-world tactical military shooter Arma 3. Excluding the second and third campaign episodes, everything in the game is playable for free during this ...
GTA mods photo
GTA mods

Rockstar says there's nothing to worry about if you're modding GTA V on PC


Playing the cool parent
May 07
// Brett Makedonski
Many people anticipated Grand Theft Auto V on PC because it afforded them the ability to play Rockstar's open-world chaos simulator on the platform of their choice. A whole other subset of people looked forward to it bec...
Assassin's Creed photo
Assassin's Creed

We found hidden clues about the next Assassin's Creed


We'll find out for sure on May 12
May 07
// Brett Makedonski
Six months ago, a rumor surfaced that the next Assassin's Creed would be set in Victorian London. Although the report looked extremely credible, we hadn't ever received anything in the way of confirmation from Ubisoft th...
GTAV mods photo
GTAV mods

Watch as a whale destroys everything in this Grand Theft Auto V mod


Whale: 'I wonder if it will be friends with me?'
Apr 29
// Ben Davis
Leave it to the modding community to give us what we never even knew we wanted in a videogame. Youtuber Merfish captured the true potential of Grand Theft Auto V by using the Script Hook V tool to wreak havoc on the people o...
GTA mod photo
GTA mod

A GTA V mod for everyone who loves the floor


Looking at you, Coolio
Apr 28
// Brett Makedonski
Often times, GTA V will keep you on your toes, what with all the driving, and shooting, and punching random people in the head. This mod does the exact opposite, as it keeps the player on their stomach. And, it does so ...
Just Cause 3 photo
Just Cause 3

First look at Just Cause 3 gameplay is appropriately explosive


Just 'cause
Apr 28
// Steven Hansen
Hey, the Just Cause 3 screenshots from last year were all well and good, but this series is all about motion. [Handsome man backflips off a car careening off an abruptly ending elevated highway] Ah, that's the stuff. The vid...
The Witcher 3 photo
The Witcher 3

Yep, The Witcher 3 on PC at 1080p and 60 frames per second is damn pretty


No shocker there
Apr 27
// Brett Makedonski
Those of you who have the beefiest of rigs are in for a treat when The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt releases in a few weeks. As if this comes as a surprise to anyone, it looks absolutely great when running at 1080p and 60 frame...

PC Port Report: Grand Theft Auto V

Apr 25 // Patrick Hancock
Grand Theft Auto V (PC, [tested], PS3, Xbox 360)Developer: Rockstar GamesPublisher: Take TwoReleased: September 17, 2013 / April 14, 2015MSRP: $59.99Rig: Intel i7-4770k 3.50 GHz, 8GB of RAM, GeForce GTX 560 Ti GPU  First of all, know this: Grand Theft Auto V on PC is a whopping 60 gigabytes. Let me spell it out for you -- sixty! Be careful if your Internet plan has a data cap, because this is guaranteed to push it to the limit. You also may need to clear some space on your harddrive, so be aware of that before you begin the download! The next step is setting up your Rockstar Social Club account. The account name system bans certain  words, so if your last name happens to contain a "bad word," you can't include it in your account name (sigh). The system has been more or less unobtrusive, though it is annoying that the game can't simply use everyone's Steam ID since they get linked anyway. However, this does allow players to transfer their characters from the consoles to the PC. Grand Theft Auto V has a metric butt-ton of options for the users to play with and optimize. Because of this, many players will be able to find a group of settings that allows GTA V to run very smoothly on their rig. Perhaps the best thing the game does is show the amount of video memory for the installed graphics card. As the user changes the settings, the amount of video memory the game is using will fluctuate. This helps players, especially those not in tune to optimization, fine-tune the numbers to get a smooth experience. After some tinkering, I was able to run the game at my native 1920x1080 resolution and consistently get 60 frames per second. I wasn't able to turn the textures to High, but the game still looks great. In order to run it at this resolution, however, I had to turn off the option that limits players to their graphics card memory usage. The number it was showing was barely higher than the total for my graphics card, and it doesn't seem to have any real trouble running the game smoothly. The framerate does occasionally dip to around 30 when traveling around mountainous or heavily wooded areas. After running at a constant 60 for the rest of the time, this dip in framerate is very noticeable and is very consistent in the aforementioned areas. YouTube user "wiliextreme" did a great job showing different graphics settings in this video. [embed]290676:58331:0[/embed] The biggest issue with the PC version of GTA V is the long and frequent loading times when playing online. When cruising around and enjoying the city of Los Santos, the game is great. However, when players want to do missions, the main way to advance online, they get thrown into frequent long load times. Getting into a mission forces the game to load, and this loading time feels like forever. In reality it's around two minutes, usually. Then there's the potential of waiting for players to join in, which can also take some time, but at least this wait is understandable. I've even loaded into a game that was full, forcing me to load back into Los Santos, back at square one. Once the mission is completed, players vote to either retry (if failed) or for what the next mission should be (if succeeded). Then, when loading whatever is next in store, another long load time rears its ugly head. I have the game installed on a traditional HDD, since the game is HUGE, but I've seen other players who have installed it on an SSD having the same issue with load times. The initial load into the online portion of the game is much longer than loading into missions, but to be fair it is quite a large city to be loaded. Just like any online game, GTAV Online's lag comes from being paired up with players who are far away or with poor connections. Most of my time was rather lag-free, however being in a car with someone who is lagging is not an entertaining experience. "Woah we're just about to crash into that-- oh, nevermind we're on the highway now." Doing missions like this makes certain players virtually useless as they teleport all over the place and neither player knows what's really happening. Playing with friends can be an absolute blast, but also frustrating to get going. Loading into the same instance of Los Santos is easy enough, but joining the same mission, especially on the same team, is not. Since there's no "party" system in GTA V Online, one player needs to join a mission and then invite others to that mission. Then, if there are teams, chances are they will not be on the same team. Heck, the mission might even be started by the host before a friend can join the mission. Part of this can be alleviated by someone becoming the host and having the "Remain Host after Next Job Vote Screen" option enabled, though this is disabled by default. There's also the first-person perspective mode, which is certainly interesting. There is a field-of-view (FOV) slider, but the highest it goes is incredibly low for most people. However, there is a mod to increase the FOV in first-person. In fact, the whole idea of mods being implemented at all is what skyrockets the PC version of the game into the realm of infinite possibilities!  I've seen some users mention that, depending on graphics cards, the framerate can inexplicably go down at times. Some 970 users have seen their framerate drop to the 30s when inside vehicles, for example. The game has gotten a few patches already in order to fix some bugs and performance, so the team seems to be paying attention and can hopefully iron things out in a timely manner. Using a controller (tested with a wireless Xbox 360 controller) is a seamless experience. Players can easily swap between the keyboard and mouse control style to a controller by simply pressing a button on a controller. When playing missions online, the game will even let others know who is using a controller and who is on a mouse and keyboard setup. That way, when one person dominates an online deathmatch mission, everyone understand why. The game also works well using Steam's Big Picture mode. I was initially worried because of the Rockstar Social Club integration, but the game automatically maps the mouse to the left analog stick when using a controller. So when the Social Club overlay is used, players using a controller can still respond to friend requests or look at game invites. Another big draw in the PC version of the game is the video capturing and editing program that's built in to the game, the Rockstar Editor. Capturing footage is as easy as hitting a button, so long as you have the amount of space needed to actually capture the footage. Editing is rather simple, but convoluted in many ways. First of all, it is only possible to access the editor while playing offline, which took me forever to figure out. Adding things like camera angles and filters is incredibly easy, but adding text is a bit annoying. Adding text to a specific location to the video is easy, but the game doesn't give a preview of the video at that time, so players need to go in and out of the actual video to see what it looks like. It's an extra step that's totally unnecessary, but the editor is still crazy good for being in-game. The GTA V port has one of the most important aspects to any PC game: malleability. The amount of options help ensure that players with at least semi-decent rigs should be able to run it well. The online portion of the game isn't as cohesive as it should be, but GTA V can easily be one of the PC ports that players point to in the future and say "why isn't it more like that?" [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
GTA V on PC photo
Wonky tennis at 60 frames per second
After many delays and what feels like forever, Grand Theft Auto V is finally on PC. It's incredibly exciting to just think of all the hilarious and unique mods that people will inevitably come up with to change the ...

GTA V mods photo
GTA V mods

This trainer is why Grand Theft Auto V is better on PC


Everybody wants to be a cat
Apr 24
// Jordan Devore
Skydiving out of a plane as a cat in Grand Theft Auto V, just as it should be. Modder Alexander Blade has come out with Script Hook V, a tool that allows players to tamper with all sorts of elements in the game through an ea...
Just Cause 3 photo
Just Cause 3

The Just Cause 3 box art looks exactly how you'd expect the Just Cause 3 box art to look


Box art posts are the worst
Apr 24
// Brett Makedonski
"Playing it safe" is rarely regarded as hang-gliding through explosions while helicopters try to gun you down. But that perfect storm of circumstances aptly describes Just Cause 3's box art. How else could you explain Square ...
Dying Light photo
Dying Light

Dying Light shambles toward top of Japanese sales charts


Only one game could fight off the zombies
Apr 22
// Brett Makedonski
Dying Light doesn't seem to have any intention of dying anytime soon. Three months after its initial release, it's maintained popularity through support of modders, new game modes, and wacky gags. Despite being widely av...
Minecraft photo
Minecraft

Australia is letting kids design a real park in Minecraft


Look out for giant sky stairs to nowhere Australia
Apr 22
// Laura Kate Dale
South Australia's state government today announced that it's going to allow children aged as young as nine to design alterations to a real life national park in Minecraft. Yes, you heard me right, nine-year-olds with Minecraf...
Starbound update photo
Starbound update

New Starbound update adds pets and teleporters


And what else? I don't know; SLIME!
Apr 21
// Darren Nakamura
It seems like these are being pushed out more frequently now. The last stable update to Starbound came out about three months ago, but before that it had been nearly a year. That said, this update seems much less substantial ...
Steam Greenlight photo
Steam Greenlight

Garbage Day does the ol' Groundhog Day time loop


Commit crimes without consequence
Apr 20
// Jordan Devore
Garbage Day is an open-world sandbox title on Steam Greenlight that sticks players in a seemingly endless time loop that can in fact be broken. (But how?) The basic premise is similar to the hit Bill Murray comedy Groundhog ...
Postal 2 expansion photo
Postal 2 expansion

Postal 2, not Portal 2, got an expansion this week


I'm still struggling to read it correctly
Apr 17
// Jordan Devore
I've never had much interest in playing Postal 2. Probably never will. And yet, every time it comes up, I have to see what's going on. There's a YouTube video of the bad-taste game entitled "Headless Gary Coleman Puke Party" ...
Interior decoration photo
Interior decoration

A ridiculously gaudy living room set for one big Borderlands fan


Some of it's pretty neat, though
Apr 15
// Brett Makedonski
Avid Borderlands players thrive on the thrill of picking up a rare and unique gun. 2K's triggering that same dopamine effect for one lucky fan with a one-of-a-kind living room set. The winner better like the color gold....
GTA V photo
GTA V

GTA V now holds Steam's record for concurrent players*


*Of games not developed by Valve
Apr 15
// Brett Makedonski
A lot of people eagerly awaited Grand Theft Auto V's debut on PC, and those same people turned up to play it as soon as they possibly could. When the game finally released on Steam yesterday, more than 300,000 players simulta...
Arkham Knight photo
Arkham Knight

Batman comic will provide the Arkham Knight's origin story


His mother would not buy him a Nintendo and he became resentful
Apr 15
// Steven Hansen
If the headline sounded like "Arkham Origins," don't be frightened. Rocksteady is back and WB can't hurt you any more. Except with delays into late June. But that's a "it's for your own good" hurt, like forcing you to eat you...
Full ghost photo
Full ghost

You won't have to fight the bosses in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided


We all asked for this
Apr 15
// Steven Hansen
You asked for this. I had my own problems with Yellowest Game of Forever (YGF) Deus Ex: Human Revolution, but it seemed the internet shared universal disdain for its forced boss fights that completely upended no-kill runs an...
GTAV Movie Maker photo
GTAV Movie Maker

Grand Theft Auto V movie maker: You too can set Forrest Gump to electro pop


First little video made entirely with Rockstar's in-game tools
Apr 13
// Steven Hansen
Here's the first video made with the "Rockstar Editor" that's coming to Grand Theft Auto V on PC tomorrow. Trevor takes a run through southern California in Forrest Gump cosplay and various states of facial hair. Rockstar co...
Far Cry 4 photo
Far Cry 4

When Far Cry 4 goes right, it goes so, so right


Style bonus
Apr 10
// Brett Makedonski
"Hmm, shotgun's not gonna work for this boat. Damn. Guess I'll have to go down there. Oooh, cargo truck! Let's take care of this real quick... ... Totally meant to do that."
Witcher 3 photo
Witcher 3

A Witcher 3 playtester needed 25 hours to speedrun the game


The Internet can probably do it quicker
Apr 09
// Brett Makedonski
Everyone knew that The Witcher 3:Wild Hunt would be a massive game. CD Projekt Red's been touting that since early development, and, frankly, it was just kind of assumed anyway. Sure, there will be plenty of non-integral...






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