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Thursday - July 30, 2015

Wasteland 2 - Director's Cut Release Date: October 13

by Hiddenx, 23:41

The Wasteland 2 Director's Cut will be released at October 13th -
Kickstarter Update #67:

Wasteland 2 Director's Cut Release Date!

Hello Exiles,

We have some big news to share with you today, so we'll just cut right to the chase. Wasteland 2 Director's Cut will be releasing digitally on PC on October 13, 2015! Additionally, for Xbox One and PlayStation 4, digital and physical releases will be coming on October 13th in the Americas, and October 16th Worldwide!

As we've said before, anyone who already owns Wasteland 2 on any digital PC retailer will be getting the Director's Cut as a free update on PC. We'll have more information as we get closer to release, but it's our intention to make sure it's as easy a process as possible. Keep your eyes peeled on our Wasteland 2 forums as we'll be putting up FAQs and similar in the coming weeks towards release.

For those of you who are still curious about the Director's Cut contents, features, and changes, or may have missed our discussions on them previously, here are some links that go over some of those new elements in detail.

And those do not even fully cover all the new additions, like new and expanded voice-over for many of the game's key NPCs and companions, as well as our extensive rebalancing of virtually every combat encounter, loot drop, and item you'll find in the game.

We're now in the home stretch of development. Our final tasks in the several weeks before final release include polishing up the game as much as we can, including tweaks, optimizations, fixes and balance adjustments. We hope you will enjoy the changes and updates as much as we enjoyed bringing them to you.

Wasteland 2

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Hard West - Launching Autumn 2015

by Hiddenx, 23:29

Some news about the tactical Western tale RPG Hard West:

Brutally Beautiful Tactical-Western, Hard West, Debuting at Gamescom and PAX Prime, Launching Autumn 2015

DEMON SALOON, WESTERN FRONTIER - Publisher Gambitious Digital Entertainment and developer CreativeForge Games have performed ritualistic blood sacrifice and joined spiritual forces on the successful Kickstarter project, Hard West - a classic Western tale of supernatural chaos and revenge coming to the PC platform in Autumn 2015. Hard West will make its press debut in the business area of Gamescom, and will be shown at PAX Prime in the PAX Rising section of the show in booth #4043.

Originally successfully backed on Kickstarter to the tune of almost 5,000 backers, Hard West features a deep narrative of choice and fate, where the Luck of the Draw acts as your unique guardian in this brutal, beautiful, inspired classic world presented in a way no human has ever experienced.

Follow Warren on his descent into the darkest recesses of the human soul, and try to survive in a world full of hard choices and even harder consequences. Because in the frontier world of Hard West, death is a constant presence and the black pacts which you make with forces beyond human comprehension will forever haunt all those around you.

Hard West combines the imaginative minds of the dangerously creative Polish developers to tell a deeply riveting tale which was written in collaboration with Haris Orkin (Company of Heroes 2, Dying Light and Call of Juarez series), and features an original score composed by Marcin Przybyłowicz (The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt).

Hard West features compelling tactical turn-based combat where players control 1-4 posse members dead-set against a world of satanic cults, arcane rituals, spirits and demons. Collect and master a range of western-inspired special abilities and create powerful combos to customize your gunslingers. You'll need them at their deadliest. Check out more at http://store.steampowered.com/app/307670/.

Find your Huckleberry in business hall 2.2 stand D72 at Gamescom and booth #4303 at PAX Prime.

Hard West

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Historical
Genre: Tactical RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

CD Projekt RED - The Witcher Role-Playing Game Announced

by Hiddenx, 08:27

CD PROJEKT RED and R.TALSORIAN GAMES have announced The Witcher Role-Playing Game:

Together with R.Talsorian Games, makers of the hit pen and paper role-playing system Cyberpunk 2020, we are pleased to announce an agreement to develop The Witcher Role-Playing Game -- the go-to tabletop Witcher experience for pen and paper RPG enthusiasts.

The Witcher Role-Playing Game will allow tabletop RPG fans to re-create an array of characters known from the Witcher universe and live out entirely new adventures set within the world of Geralt of Rivia. Powered by Fuzion, the same ruleset that made Cyberpunk 2020 gain worldwide player acclaim, The Witcher Role-Playing Game will feature a myriad of spells, rituals, and curses; favorite gear and items from the entire Witcher series including a bestiary of devilish monsters players can face during their adventures. The system will provide all the necessary tools to create and play out your own adventures and become everything from a battle-hardened monster slayer to a merchant kingpin controlling a vast network of contacts.

The Witcher Role-Playing Game is currently slated for a mid 2016 release. More information about the system, price and availability will be provided at a later point in time.

 

CD Projekt RED

Details

BattleTech - New Kickstarter coming this Fall

by Hiddenx, 08:13

A BattleTech Kickstarter is planned:

TACTICAL ‘MECH COMBAT RETURNS TO THE PC.

Harebrained Schemes is pleased to announce their return to Kickstarter this Fall to partner with Backers in co-funding the creation of BATTLETECH. Jordan Weisman, the creator of BattleTech and MechWarrior, is back with the first turn-based BattleTech game for PC in over two decades. Steeped in the feudal political intrigue of the BattleTech universe, the game will feature an open-ended Mercenaries-style campaign that blends RPG ‘Mech and MechWarrior management with modern turn-based tactics.

 

Kickstarter

Details

King's Quest - Review @ The Escapist

by Hiddenx, 07:59

The first chapter of the new King's Quest Adventure was released earlier this week.
The Escapist has reviewed A Knight to Remember:

King's Quest Review - A New Knight of Adventure

The definition of "adventure game" has changed since the days of the original King's Quest. What used to be a genre about banging your head against puzzles and dying repeatedly, has evolved into something more cinematic after the rise to popularity of Telltale projects such as The Walking Dead. It would have been easy for The Odd Gentlemen to make their revival, King's Quest: A Knight to Remember, into a Telltale clone with a focus on dialogue choice and we would have liked it. Instead, they decided to go one step further and attempt to make it feel like an older Sierra game, while still adhering to the modern adventure game formula. For better and worse, this gives King's Quest: A Knight to Remember a unique identity in a genre whose games tend to feel like carbon copies of one another.

King's Quest tells the story of, well, King's Quest, but in a new way. King Graham is now old and withered, nearing the end of his life. He spends most of his days in bed, telling his stories of adventure to anyone who will listen. His favorite audience is his granddaughter Gwendolyn, a rambunctious young scamp who has inherited his love of adventure.

This is the frame for the plot, a Big Fish story when your actions make up the story itself. Episode 1 begins far before Graham was even a knight, much less a king, and by the time episode 5 ends, the events of all prior King's Quest games will have transpired and we will have rejoined Graham and Gwendolyn in the present day.

What's unique about this format is that there is not one, but three plots running concurrently. The first is the story that is being told, the events of the past that you, the player, get to influence as a young Graham. The second, is Graham and Gwendolyn's narration over the story, which doesn't always line up with the actual events that transpire. Graham loves to embellish his deeds telling Gwendolyn of what a fearless knight he was when in actuality he was tripping over his own two feet and acting as comic relief. The third, is what happens to Gwendolyn after the stories are told. She learns something from every tale and we get to see her apply this knowledge to conflicts she faces in her day to day life. There's something heartwarming and magical about watching the younger generation learn from the advice of the older generation. It's almost symbolic of how this game came to be, with older King's Quest titles informing the design of this new one, and you getting to play the result.

Gameplay is separated into three distinct parts, adventuring, conversing, and quick-time events. While adventuring, you will explore Daventry and solve puzzles, and while conversing, you will learn important information, meet new allies, and make choices that will alter the narrative. When there's a quick time event you are... pressing buttons to not die. Not everything can be innovative.

King's Quest sets itself apart from other modern adventure games by including these gameplay elements in different ratios to what you might expect. While most of a Telltale-style adventure game is spent conversing, you spend most of King's Quest adventuring. There's always a new puzzle to solve or place to go, and it makes the game feel very active and interactive.

It doesn't feel like you are just watching a movie and making a choice every so often. In fact, you frequently get to make choices outside of dialogue. Many puzzles have multiple solutions, and how you solve them is as important as what you say afterward. Heck, there are even quicktime events that you can complete different ways!

King's Quest

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wednesday - July 29, 2015

CivCraft - New Kickstarter Campaign in August

by Hiddenx, 22:03

Larkon Studio will try Kickstarter again on the 9th of August. The last CivCraft campaign was cancelled in 2014. They are better prepared this time - some information:

Trailer:

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Gameplay Demo - Greenside Village

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Gameplay Demo - Iladar Mines

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Rule your Kingdom, Pick your Adventure

CivCraft - Legends of Ellaria is a first person adventure and Role Playing Game
where you can build your own kingdom and fight epic battles.
The world around you change depending on your decisions, and it's up to you how to chose how to rule your kingdom. You can command armies and build cities in a Real Time Strategy menu, or stay in First Person Shooter mode and explore the vast and immersive open world by yourself.

CivCraft

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Dead Island 2 - Yager Daughter-Studio Insolvent

by Gorath, 18:53

Yager decided to close the sub-studio company they founded for Dead Island 2. This was to be expected, and it actually provides a bit of short-term financial safety for affected employees. GI.biz writes:

Yager Productions GMBH, the sub-division of the German studio set up to deal with Dead Island 2, is filing for insolvency after the premature termination of its contract with Deep Silver three years into development.

In a statement issued by MD Timo Ullmann, the executive reassures that the organisation of the firm means that the wider studio should remain unaffected by the insolvency, and that staff wages have been secured for the foreseeable future.

"As single-purpose company, Yager Productions GmbH was assigned to the development of the Deep Silver title Dead Island 2," said Ullmann. "The insolvency filing is a direct result from the early termination of the project and helps protecting our staff. In the course of the proceedings, we gain time to sort out the best options for reorganizing this entity."

Dead Island 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Modern
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Albion - Now On GOG!

by Gorath, 18:47

One of the European RPG classics finally becomes available again. Ubisoft / Blue Byte placed a couple of games on the GOG platform, among them Albion.

It is the year 2227, and the gigantic interstellar factory ship, Toronto, cruises toward a lifeless planet endowed with a wealth of minerals. While studying the planet in his shuttlecraft, the pilot, Tom Driscoll, unavoidably crash lands. Against all expectations, he survives to discover his craft has landed in a world rich in flora and fauna, and inhabited by intelligent beings. How could the data on the planet of Albion have been so wrong?
 Take on the role of Tom Driscoll and explore the extensive world of Albion and its endless surprises in this turn-based, tactical RPG. Experience its vast beauty and strange cultures... but beware of its many hidden dangers! You, and the companions you acquire on your journey, will experience countless adventures together and your resourcefulness, skills of negotiation and ability to deal with numerous inhabitants will be repeatedly put to the test. But most importantly, your resolve in battle will determine not only your own fate, but that of the entire world.

○ Role-playing adventure with an engaging storyline and interactive dialogue 
○ Turn-based, tactical combat 
○ User-friendly and intuitive interface and navigation
○ Expansive and captivating game-world

Thanks to pork for sending in the news!

Albion

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Kingdom Come: Deliverance - Verion 0.1 First Look

by Myrthos, 12:41

On his Youtube channel Omega Project Zero has a video of a play through session of version 1.0 of Kingdom Come: Deliverance.

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The most unbelievable game of our time has now released Alpha Access. The current build is 0.1 so you can't do a whole lot, but I managed to steal some guys flute for a quest and talk to a bunch of NPCs in the town.

This is the most gorgeous game I have ever seen by far and there is so much more to come! Kingdom Come: Deliverance is an Open World Sandbox RPG where you will be able to go anywhere and do anything on a massive map that will involve non-linear quests that you can complete many different ways as you see fit and experience a living world where every NPCs life matters. Stay tuned for more, as they update I will be continuing videos on this amazing game!

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Battle Brothers - Wardogs, Armor and Visual Makeover

by Myrthos, 12:37

In a new development blog for Battle Brothers we are informed that wardogs are being added to the game and the armor mechanics changed. In addition a makeover of many of the older assets in the game are being worked on.

That’s right, wardogs have made their way into the game and you can soon have them in your mercenary company. These dogs are of a large and aggressive breed and they come with their own name and one of several different looks. But what is their purpose?

Goblins will rely heavily on ranged combat and kiting their opponents, so Battle Brothers need a new trick up their sleeves as well. And while the recently introduced feature of retreating enemies does alleviate the issue of having to catch the last remaining enemies, we want to go further. Wardogs are a tool for the player to chase down any enemy and hold them in place until Battle Brothers arrive, as well as to find any enemies hidden in the fog of war. It’s a tool that makes a lot of sense in a medieval fantasy world, and at the same time is something to have fun with and get invested in. Afterall, who doesn’t like dogs?

Wardogs are not individual characters in your party but are treated like an item – at least outside of combat. They can be bought in settlements and then assigned to a character before combat. Ever noticed that empty slot in the top left of your characters’ paper doll? That’s the accessory slot, and that’s where wardogs go, among other things.

wardog battle brothers turn based strategy

In combat the character handling a dog has a unique skill called ‘Unleash Wardog’. The unleashed dog will spawn on an adjacent free tile and will act immediately after the handler has finished his turn. The dog is not controlled by the player but by the AI following a distinct behavior – it will straight up charge for the next free opponent and engage him in melee all while doing a lot of barking. Wardogs don’t actually do that much damage, at least not against armored opponents, but they are very useful in pinning down archers or other elusive targets in the opponent’s backline for your Battle Brothers to follow up. What’s more, they can track down hidden enemies. If you don’t know where the last few enemies are hiding on the map, unleash a dog and he will find them for you.

Battle Brothers

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Sketch Tales - To Early Access

by Myrthos, 12:25

Sketch Tales, the RPG you draw yourself, is coming to Steam Early Access in September with a $9.99 price tag.

Friends, it’s just about four weeks before summer sings its farewell song. You (as much as we) are counting days for Sketch Tales Early Access to come out. But what if you get stuck in this stunning living world, fascinated by your drawings coming to life? You might completely forget about the beach, cocktails and the fading summer. That’s way too much risk! Therefore we decided to postpone the Early Access till September.

Jokes aside, we value quality as highly as creativity. We want to have you immersed in an incredible adventure which will leave a ton of positive impressions. For that we’d still need to polish things here and there, tweak things a bit and add a few surprises on top.

So, keep your brushes peeled: the drawing adventure will start in September!
And now, the announcement that many of you have been waiting for. We are ready to name the price of the game. Early Access which will get upgraded to the full version will cost $9.99.

Here is a song from the game

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And some screens.

Sketch Tales

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Bard's Tale IV - Interview with Brian Fargo @ GMG

by Hiddenx, 08:22

Green Man Gaming and Brian Fargo talking about Kickstarter, immersion, and free-form exploration:

[...]

You guys are Kickstarter veterans now, and great success stories. What's been the key to nailing that balance on the crowdfunding platform?

We certainly have some advantages of being in the games business for so long. Crowdfunding is the ultimate test of trust when people give you their very hard earned money up front and count on you to come through with them. We've also struck a nerve for a certain kind of game/genre that was perhaps underserved and that gamers wanted to see more of. The goodwill we try to foster goes way beyond the Kickstarter campaign.

The Bard's Tale is back! It's a series that introduced many to the RPG genre, what's the plan for this 4th instalment?

This kind of RPG was eventually called a "dungeon crawl" and it's one of my favorite types of games. I grew up playing them and I hope to grow old doing so. There is a simplicity to the exploring that draws me in and when combat starts it becomes tactical but not so much like a strategy game. The closest analogy I can use for today's game is Hearthstone in which you make all of your decisions first and then the other side get its attempt to strike back.

You've spoken a lot about immersion being key to The Bard's Tale IV, could you elaborate on that point?

Immersion or suspension of disbelief is the hallmark of good entertainment to me. When a film is great you forget you are in a theater and when a game is great I don't realize I'm looking at a monitor anymore. This feeling comes about when the visuals, audio and interface come together perfectly. I think a dungeon crawl type RPG is perfect in its simplicity of movement, you don't need to fight with the camera and your focus on wholly on the world when exploring. Walking around a mystical torchlight dungeon and listening for audio cues about traps and enemy movement is a grand time to me.

The dungeon-crawling genre is pretty packed these days. How will The Bard's Tale IV stand out from the crowd besides is storied history and series acclaim?

I'm not sure I would consider the genre packed but there is certainly some choice in the category. We have a major focus on what the latest technology can offer making the visuals a key component of the experience. We are making sure to utilize the latest in particle physics, photogrammetry, hair works, fabric modeling etc to make a game that looks as good as the demos you see from Nvidia or Unreal. A dungeon crawl has some unique aspects to it that allow us to push the hardware. I'm also feeling quite confident that our combat system will be both visceral and deep. And I might add that our musical approach with the Scottish talent and Mark Morgan will give it extra flair. I'm really about making the game.

Can you tell us a little more about The Bard's Tale IV's free-form exploration?

Freedom to go where you want, when you want is a key to RPGs for us and The Bard’s Tale IV will be no different. We don’t stop you from going where you want, but on the other hand we don’t protect you from that choice either. So don’t be surprised if an Ogre Brute comes up to you and smooshes your low-level party into the ground. There will also be some puzzles and challenges you can not yet pass at early levels so it won’t be free-form in the sense of a Skyrim, but neither will we guide you through linear corridors.

Wasteland 2 was a narrative-heavy, text-stuffed experience – will The Bard's Tale IV be more mechanically focused, and how will that feed into questing and combat systems?

Traditionally the dungeon crawl genre has been focused almost purely on the mechanics side, heavily focused on detailed character systems and challenging combat as well as devious dungeons. We’re maintaining a lot of that so yes, the game will be heavily focused on combat and exploration, but we’re also believers in telling a great story so the Bard’s Tale IV will be more story-heavy than its predecessors, though not as story-heavy as Wasteland 2 or Torment.

In terms of the game's story, will The Bard's Tale IV directly follow on from the previous games? Where do we pick things up in this game?

Yes, The Bard’s Tale IV is a direct follow-up. It is one hundred and fifty years after the destruction of Skara Brae, and a new town has been built on top of the old. The practice of magic is a sin and the old races have been banished, and even the Adventurer’s Guild closed by the Church of the Sword Father. But adventurers still gather in the dungeons beneat Skara Brae, the old city, seeking to survive in a land that now wants them dead.

Reconciling past and present is often a question raised with longstanding series such as TBT, but as Brian's mentioned in previous interviews, you're playing modern games all the time. Is there almost too much choice in determining how to modernise a game such as this, and how do go about reconciling nostalgic experiences that come with decade-old franchises like this with the need to cater to new players and potential fans?

There are definitely a lot of choices but I don’t think you can often have too much choice. The important thing is realizing what the core of the experience that people loved was and then unapologetically embracing it. We don’t really want to cater to anyone other than the hardcore RPG fans that continue to back us on Kickstarter, and that allows us to craft games that take advantage of modern technology and design ideas without ruining what makes these kind of games great.

What's the most awesome thing about The Bard's Tale IV?

It’s a bit too early to say what my favorite part of the game is, you really need to see a game come together to discover what those moments are where you truly struck gold. Personally what I’m most excited about now is getting the combat system in, we have some great ideas to make encounters a real experience both visually and strategically.

Peanut butter or Nutella?

Since my favorite crepe is banana and Nutella.. I must choose Nutella.

Bard's Tale IV

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Dungeon Crawler
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Diablo 3 - Patch 2.3.0 Preview: Kanai's Cube

by Hiddenx, 08:10

There is a preview for patch 2.3.0 on the Diablo 3 Batte.Net website:

The Horadric Cube is one of the Diablo series’ most iconic items. Introduced in Diablo II, this quest item was an important part of the story and offered a slew of handy transmutation functions, from combining gems to upgrading items. But where did the Cube’s power originate? The Horadrim were vague when it came to the history of this powerful item. Today, we reveal its lineage as the upcoming 2.3.0 feature—Kanai’s Cube.

Lost and Forgotten

The precursor to the well-known Horadric Cube, Kanai’s Cube is a powerful artifact containing immeasurable transmutation power. Originally simply known as “the Cube,” the Horadrim created it as a tool to aid them in the Hunt for the Three.  However, its creation was marred by dark methods and disastrous results, resulting in the order quickly determining that it was too dangerous for anyone to continue using. Creating the weaker Horadric Cube in its stead, they entrusted the first Cube to a secret organization of barbarians on Mount Arreat, who kept it safe from everyone, including the rest of their tribe.

Throughout the years, these barbarians served as guardians over the Cube, keeping it safe from prying eyes and those who would use its powers for evil. The last of these guardians, the great Chief Elder Kanai, perished when the demon lord Baal destroyed Sescheron during the events of Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. The barbarians have always believed their warriors must be put to rest on the slopes of Mount Arreat but, after the destruction of the Worldstone and the mountain that housed it, Kanai’s spirit was unable to rest. Now doomed to stand eternal vigil over his home and greatest treasure, he awaits a powerful and honorable individual to whom he might pass on his task.

One insidious individual has once again found his way amongst the living (sort of) and would love to get his ethereal hands on the artifact his order so foolishly discarded. Of course, he knows only one such individual who might impress the mighty Kanai . . .

Power Untold

So what exactly is Kanai’s Cube going to do for your nephalem hero? The short answer is all the things. This is a huge new feature that will fundamentally change the way you look at an item when it drops. Think of it as the handyman’s (handynephalem’s?) tool for item customization. Not only does it add another layer of character power at your fingertips, but also introduces a structured collection element to the huge item game at the core of Diablo III.

One of the first, most frequent powers you’ll utilize is the ability to extract a Legendary power from an item. This will add the power to your collection list, a comprehensive history detailing the vast amount of powers you’ve amassed. This also allows your hero to equip a Legendary power without having the item equipped, clearing up your stash of all those items you’ve been keeping “just in case.” You’ll be able to equip one power each from three categories:

  • Weapons
  • Includes all main hand and off-hand items, including Shields, Mojos, Quivers, and the like
  • Armor
  • Virtually everything else; Hands, Legs, Feet, Chest, Belt, Wrists, Shoulders, and Head
  • Jewelry
  • Rings and Amulets

Characters may only equip powers from items that their class can normally equip. Powers are also extracted at their most potent value, making it a tough decision between equipping a well-rolled item or melting it down to utilize a maximized power. Powers can be extracted from any level Legendary. Finally, don’t worry if you get tired of a particular ability—you’ll be able to swap freely between the powers you’ve collected at any time by visiting Kanai’s Cube.

Let’s say you’ve hunted down that amazing Legendary that totally makes your build, but it’s rolled less than desirable. If only it had that missing stat, it would have been saved from Haedrig’s anvil. Maybe you regret an enchant you made or you wish that rare Furnace you found was Ancient. With a little effort and a lot of luck, you can rectify these situations. Kanai’s Cube will be able to reforge a Legendary, completely randomizing every roll on the item as though it had dropped brand-new and removing any existing enchants. This includes the chance to roll as Ancient, but be forewarned; if you choose to reforge an Ancient item, there’s no guarantee it will stay Ancient.

There are also several other quality of life functions Kanai’s Cube can perform, such as removing the level requirement from an item, converting gems and crafting materials from one type to another, and converting a set item to a different piece of that set.  We’ll leave you to ponder the best ways to utilize these new features!

Not Just a Legend, But a Tribute

There is more to Kanai’s Cube than lore and functionality. While we always knew that we wanted to implement a form of the Horadric Cube into Diablo III, we never anticipated the events that would lead to it becoming Kanai’s Cube.

Kevin Kanai Griffith was a beloved member of the Blizzard family and a longtime Diablo fan. He joined Blizzard as an artist on the World of Warcraft team in 2005 and his work can be seen in the Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, and Mists of Pandaria expansions, as well as the World of Warcraft trading card game. As the Diablo III team came together, Kevin joined and made his mark on the original game, crafting a plethora of diverse and moody environments that you’re certain to recognize.

Kevin continued producing gorgeous environments and Diablo holiday art throughout the launch and beyond the release of Reaper of Souls. You might also remember him from footage of his Diableard being shaved live on stage at the 2011 launch of Diablo III, his Artist’s Stage Demo at BlizzCon 2013, or our second anniversary livestream. He was always an active member of the community both inside the company and out, whether it was by organizing weekly sketch groups, or encouraging his friends to team up and play games together. Kevin was an amazing mentor to everyone around him and a wonder to work with: you couldn’t help but get passionate and pumped about your job when he was in the room.

Tragedy struck in February of 2012 when Kevin was diagnosed with a very rare form of cancer known as Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma (ASPS). Kevin kept his spirits high throughout the grueling treatment process and continued to work on Diablo III as much as he was able, pioneering environmental features such as the weather and night/day cycles experienced in Adventure Mode. Though he fought valiantly, we lost our coworker and dear friend on October 17, 2014. His spirit and legacy will always live on in the many games he’s touched with his stunning art, as well as the hearts of every individual who had the honor of knowing him.

We miss you, Kevin. This Cube is for you.

Kanai’s Cube Calls…

Kanai’s Cube is a huge feature of Patch 2.3.0, set to change the foundation of Diablo III as we know it. We’re excited to share the intimate background behind this powerful system and in-game dedication to a man who was truly a king amongst mortals.

Which part of Kanai’s Cube has you the most stoked? What kind of Legendary powers are you looking forward to combining the most? Let us know in the comments or, if you haven’t already, hop onto our PTR today and give it a try! We can’t wait to hear your feedback.

 

Diablo 3

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

XCOM 2 - The Chryssalid @ Gamespot

by Hiddenx, 07:54

Kevin VanOrd (Gamespot) asked XCOM 2 lead producer Garth DeAngelis some questions about the Chryssalid:

It came from outer space.

If you’ve played an XCOM game in the past, then you know the Chryssalid, the most frightening-looking alien the games depict. In XCOM 2's multiplayer, you will get the chance to command one of these extraterrestrial meanies for yourself, but most of the time, you will face a chryssalid as an opponent. Developer Firaxis hopes to make this gruesome unit an even more intimidating force in the upcoming strategy sequel, and lead producer Garth DeAngelis recently divulged how the team is doing just that.

GAMESPOT: So the chryssalid returns, but outside of multiplayer, there's no chance of somehow recruiting one to join the XCOM forces, I presume?

DEANGELIS: The chryssalid is very much still one of the alien occupiers of Earth. They are against XCOM. They will never become a part of your army.

We had to have them come back. They've been a staple of XCOM, harkening back to the original UFO defense. A couple of decades have taken place since you lost in Enemy Unknown. A lot of the enemies have evolved. Now, the chryssalid, they're a little bit too crazy of a species to integrate human DNA into them, but they have evolved. They've received some upgrades. What they did in Enemy Unknown, is they implanted XCOM with something that would then breed another chryssalid out of them, if you remember. It was a pretty terrifying sequence. Design said, "How can we make this crazier?" [...]

XCOM 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Tuesday - July 28, 2015

King's Quest - First Chapter Released

by Hiddenx, 22:08

Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember was released today:

An aging King Graham reflects on a life of adventure with his granddaughter, Gwendolyn, taking players back to his teen years and his quest to become a knight of Daventry in King Edward’s royal guard. Discover a wondrous world full of whimsical characters, charming puzzles and perilous dangers in this fun and enchanting coming of age story.

King's Quest

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

InSomnia - Combat System Elements

by Hiddenx, 21:55

In Kickstarter Update #35 we get some info about the elements of the InSomnia combat system:

Tactical pause

Though combat will run in real time mode you will have an opportunity to use a feature generally known as a "tactical pause". It will give you some time to think, analyze the current situation, make up your mind with commands and use your resources wisely.

However you won't be able to do just everything at once using this little helper - the number of actions you can perform will be directly connected with the amount of action points you have. APs can be spent to immediately heal your character and his team with meds, for energy shields activation, accessing your inventory etc.

It will take some time to restore your action points so you won't be able to use tactical pause non-stop. The maximum amount of APs of your character will depend on his parameters and traits.

Sure, you will be able to switch between your NPCs and give them orders even without ever using the pausing mechanism. This way however you should be ready to feel the consequences of someone firing right in your face while you are trying to heal. Ouch!

Combat statuses

Any conflict can cause all kinds of outcomes that might make your character suffer in different ways:

Exhaustion - this penalty goes active whenever endurance indicator of your character drops to zero. This status has a temporary influence on the following things:

  • the damage you do to others is decreased
  • the accuracy of your long-range weaponry drops
  • you can't sprint

Disorientation - whenever you get hit during the close combat your character might feel some additional negative effects of this damage. While this status is active your fire rate drops, so the best idea is to deal with anyone who is close to you before aiming at distant enemies.

The other interesting thing that might happen to your character while being hurt is interruption which will interrupt (well wasn't that obvious) your current action like using healing items, taking aimed shots etc. It can be ignored if your durability parameter is developed enough. However chances to do that decrease if the damage is too high.

Critical condition - if your character's health drops too low you will lose ability to perform any actions with his help at all as he will be in coma. To fix that you'll need another NPC with a proper item in his inventory.

You will be pleased to know that your enemies will also experience critical conditions... and you will be able to "finish" them. The execution animation depends on the weapon you are currently equipped with.

Other combat aspects

There is a list of things that you won't be able to do while fighting, including the following:

  • traveling between locations and visiting global map
  • saving your game progress
  • talking and performing barter
  • building a camp

All these activities will be available for you again after you kill all enemies around. The other alternative is try to hide from your foes and stay out of their sight at least for some time.

Hopefully this was an enjoyable read, as we really enjoyed to prepare this update for you. Until next time!

 

InSomnia

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

King of Dragon Pass - Re-Released on Steam

by Hiddenx, 21:39

The classic and unique game King of Dragon Path is now available on Steam, too.

King of Dragon Pass

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Kyn - Released

by Hiddenx, 21:18

Kyn released today:

on GOG:

Introducing Tangrin Entertainment, an indie team of just two developers based in the Netherlands. Over the last 2 years they have created Kyn, an action packed role playing strategy game that delivers over 20 hours of gameplay across a unique Viking inspired mythological world with plenty of landscapes to explore, puzzles to solve and enemies to defeat. Outsmart the enemy in combat with up to 6 warriors using the unique time manipulation feature. Collect loot and use the crafting system to upgrade your motley crew with more powerful weapons and armor. Kyn is a true adventurer’s adventure game!
  • A Magical Viking World Brought to Life: Unlock the mysteries of the vast world of KYN as you explore ancient ruins, lush landscapes and snowy mountains filled with intricate puzzles and plenty of danger! Fight against a variety of intelligent enemies and use your skill and cunning to take out powerful boss enemies!
  •  A Hybrid Tactical RPG Meets Hack-n-Slash: This is real time action in a fantastical RPG setting.  You will need to leverage the environment to create traps, defend areas or build up special attacks.  When tactics are needed, utilize the slow motion feature, where time slows to almost zero and you can direct your heroes to an area and assign them a task to out flank, out smart and defeat your enemies!
  •  An RPG Party with up to Six Playable Characters:  Build that classic RPG dungeon crawling group with our motely group of heroes. Each warrior can be outfitted with different equipment and specialized abilities to meet your needs. Allocating points in mind, body, control will build characters that fit your style or meet the challenges of the puzzles you will soon face.
  •  A Deep Crafting and Loot System: Collect hundreds of items.  Combine over 100 different elemental materials in a unique crafting system designed to help you get more powerful weapons and armor.

Trailer:

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and Steam:

In a world where Viking mythology collides with magic, explore the world of KYN in a fast paced role playing strategy game that combines party based combat with exploration and progression.

Kyn

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Project: Gorgon - A Fluent First Look Video

by Fluent, 16:28

Hi everyone!

In this 39-minute video, I take a look at an early alpha version of the Kickstarter MMORPG, Project: Gorgon! The video is a bit long and I don't use a script, so feel free to grab some popcorn and watch the fun unfold!

The game is an MMORPG in the vein of early MMORPGs, such as Asheron's Call and Everquest 1 & 2. 

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Hey everyone! In this exciting video I take a look at the upcoming MMORPG, Project: Gorgon.

Okay, you read that it's an MMO and want to stop reading. Well, don't! This is a true sandbox/open-world MMO that we haven't seen since the likes of Asheron's Call many years back! This is not your typical WoW clone or anything even close to that. This is a true explorer's dream game, so watch the video and see how unique and fantastic this fascinating MMORPG really is!

If you'd like to support their Kickstarter to make this game even better, you can go here and support them! - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/projectgorgon/project-gorgon-pc-mmo

You can also join the forums and find more information about their game here - http://projectgorgon.com/

Please support them! Check out the game yourself and see if this is something you would like. =)

Ciao!

Project: Gorgon

SP/MP: Massive
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: MMORPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Hand of Fate - Review @ Ninja Blues

by Hiddenx, 07:27

A Hand of Fate review in a 'let's play' style at Ninja Blues:

[...]

Luckily, functionally-alright-if-sloppy-combat isn’t the only thing Hand Of Fate has to offer. I find that what drew me in wasn’t so much the brawling, it was the storytelling.

What makes Hand Of Fate’s narrative particularly neat is that it’s multi-layered. On the surface, the story that is going on is the ‘duel’ between you and the Nameless Card Master. The Card Master (who does all the talking) makes frequent references to the ‘stake’ and ‘the cost of losing’, and guesses at your reasons for playing the game. The surface narrative is that of a man gambling away something important — His soul? Nah, that seems too cliché — for the promise of undefined power. The Card Master, on his end, has a history of his own: he was a player of this game before he was a dealer, and the game is as it is now thanks to him — but not only him.

But beneath the surface of this ruling narrative, the cards themselves tell stories of their own. It’s outright mentioned several times that these cards are drawn from ‘your’ memories, that they represent significant events and places in your life that you are revisiting through the medium of the game. And Hand Of Fate cleverly handles these mini-stories, drawing them out over multiple cards and multiple play sessions by way of its deckbuilding and token mechanics.

[...]

Hand of Fate

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Card-Based RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Fallout 4 - Base Customization @ Gamespot

by Hiddenx, 07:07

Gamespot asked Pete Hines about base customization in Fallout 4:

Fallout 4 Base Customization Will Have More Options Than Skyrim

Want to build a spaceship? You can do that.

At E3, developer Bethesda announced that Fallout 4 would have places in its world for players to build bases. Now, Marketing VP Pete Hines has revealed to GameSpot a little more about the extent of this creator and a level of customization available to players.

In an interview at Quakecon, Hines told us that the base creator isn't limited to pre-determined frameworks for buildings. Rather, players will be given the ability to decide many different aspects of their buildings. Hines specifically referenced the homes players can own in Skyrim - although there are small choices in customization, most of the buildings were set and unchangeable. Hines explained that Fallout 4 gives you much more control over your base than Skyrim does.

"It's not just, 'Hey, here's Breezehome [one of the houses in Skyrim],' where we just picked a house, and you can buy it, and you can go to somebody and say, 'Here's this much gold, and put this thing into my house.' [In Fallout 4] it's, 'Now I'm building it, I'm actually building the house, I'm building the wall, I'm placing the door, I made the table, I made the mattress.' It's that sense of making your own way in the world and defining, 'Who am I and where do I live and what's my story in this world?'"

He went on to say that building locations are limited, but there are a lot of options for building within those spaces. "There are preset locations around the world where you can [build]," Hines explained. "You can definitely build up... [In one demo] there's a radio tower, and the developer that built it just kept going up and incorporating the tower into their structure."

He continued: "Much like a game like Minecraft, you can be a noob and just build a simple little thing. And you can also get the guys who go crazy and [can say], 'I rebuilt the spaceship from this game... [or] I rebuilt the Tardis from Doctor Who using the lights and stuff and it looks exactly like it.' Like, holy s**t that's incredible."

 

Fallout 4

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Mount & Blade II - Debut at Gamescom 2015 @ NicheGamer

by Hiddenx, 06:50

Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord will be revealed at the Gamescom 2015 in Cologne:

TaleWorlds Entertainment will be revealing Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord for the first time at Gamescom 2015 in Cologne. Media will be invited to attend private viewing sessions of live gameplay from the game in its current state. Video and additional information about the game will be released to the general public concurrently, satiating some of the massive player demand for information on the new entry to the franchise.

The series, which has until now accumulated over 6 million unit sales, is a favourite among players, much loved for its refreshing sandbox gameplay that centres around player freedom. This next instalment takes place 200 years before Warband but brings the series forward by greatly expanding gameplay in all areas and offering much improved visuals.

 

Mount & Blade II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Monday - July 27, 2015

Witcher 3 - Is Getting A New Game Plus Mode

by Hiddenx, 21:34

The last free DLC will be a 'New Game Plus Mode':

Already finished The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt multiple times?
We’ve got something coming up…
New Game+, the final DLC, is on the way and, of course, it’s completely FREE!
Stay tuned for more info regarding the release. It won’t happen this week though - we need a little bit more time to finish it.

Witcher 3

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wizardry 8 - in RPG Heroes Bundle

by Icefire, 21:05

Wizardry 8 is one of the attractions in Bundle Stars new RPG Heroes Bundle. Other games included are Blades Of Time Limited Edition, bit Dungeon II, Etherlords I & II, Rune Classic, Fate:Undiscovered Realms, and Realms Of Arkania:Blades Of Destiny & the DLC For The Gods. The Bundle is $2.49 for the first 48 hours only. (42 Hours left as of this writing).

 

Wizardry 8

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

RoA: Blade of Destiny HD - Patch 1.35 Released

by Hiddenx, 18:45

Two years after release we get a new 381 MB patch for RoA: Blade of Destiny HD:

After months of development and just in time prior to the 2 year anniversary of the Blade of Destiny release, Crafty Studios and the Beta Team of BoD HD are proud to present Patch 1.35, consisting of more than 300 changes, additions, modability extensions and fixes. Detailed patchnotes can be found in our official forum at Patchnotes 1.35[forum.schicksalsklinge.com]. Just some highlights:

Content changes and extensions
  • Castle Felsteyn: Mod of Viana included as Event
  • In Thorwal there is now the building "The Black Finger"
  • You can now sell books in the Thorwal Mage Academy
  • New event "Revenge of Ottaskin"
  • New event in Phexcaer: Nancy's Note of Validor the villain
  • Random city event "A pickpocket"
  • Random city event "A Carriage"
  • Random city event "A shooting star"
  • Random city event "A beggar" extended
  • 8 new events for resting at an inn
  • 6 new events during outdoor camps
  • 4 additional random battles after camps
New and updated Features
  • User Interface is now scalable (e.g. for 4K resolutions)
  • The console now logs experience points
  • Console messages are in different colors
  • Battle Avatar look improved (rimshader removed, specularity reduced)
  • The spell "Solidirid" can now be used in the game
  • The group now shares its food and water reserves
  • The Spider demon is now a significantly bigger avatar in battle to diversify from the lesser spiders
Extensions to Modability
  • Displaying images (up to size 256x256) possible in dialog boxes
  • Character classes can now have custom portraits by mod
  • NPCs can now have custom portraits
  • Temple flags (in size 256x512) can now be replaced

...and a myriad of Bugfixes.

Enjoy and spread the word!

RoA: Blade of Destiny HD

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Edge Of Eternity - New Screenshot

by Myrthos, 17:30

Here is a single screenshot for the JRPG Edge of Eternity, which was recently made available by the developers of the game.

Edge Of Eternity

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: J-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

ICY - Released

by Myrthos, 17:19

Here is the official press blurb for the releases of ICY today on Steam now with a 25% discount and later also on Humble Store and others (but can't find it there now).

ICY, THE NARRATIVE-DRIVEN POST-APOCALYPTIC RPG LAUNCHES TODAY!
CAN YOU SURVIVE THE WHITE WASTELAND?

STAMFORD, CT, July 27, 2015 – Digital Tribe Games is excited to announce the launch of Inner Void Entertainment’s narrative-driven, survival RPG, ICY, on Steam, Humble Store and other major digital distribution channels. ICY releases today at the suggested retail price of $12.99. An additional 25% discount will be available for a week in celebration of the title’s release.

ICY presents a full cast of complex characters with diverse personalities and dramatic backstories – each willing to tell you all if players decide to ask. Some characters encountered will even be willing to abandon their chosen path and join the player’s ever-growing nomad family as they make their way across the Frozen World in search of lost friends and a better life. Prepare to hunt, scavenge, trade and sometimes kill in order to obtain what is needed to survive.

In the world of the new Ice Age, players are immersed in the dire struggle to stay alive. The words you say and actions you make send you down branching paths where characters can become new friends, or bitter enemies, based on the tone of conversation you choose. The EXP players invested in Skills, and Items discovered when scavenging, dictate which options are available as they continually face new situations in this post-apocalyptic environment.

ICY began as a little experiment inspired by NEO: Scavenger, which really managed to simulate the harshness of surviving in a hostile environment, as well as various RPGs in which player's choices really matter - Games where dialogue isn’t just something to skip to get back to shooting people.

Survival games are quite popular, but most of them are procedural games in which the player has to survive as long as he/she can. With ICY, we wanted to put a long and complex plot alongside some more standard mechanics of the survival genre, but without using a central hub in which the player had to constantly return to as they slowly gather and build resources to improve their chances of survival.

In ICY, the player is the leader of a nomad family where survival is based on more than just collecting resources. That is just part of the nomad’s daily routine where survival not only consists of hunting and scavenging, but also how they choose to interact with other characters and tackle the situations they face as the narrative of the game plays out.

We worked hard to give it a unique flavor, to create a unique experience. ICY is not a clone of another game, but something with its own identity and we are very proud we have been able to achieve that.
- Nathan Piperno, Inner Void 

Key features:
  • Experience an intense and mature story of survival in a unique post-apocalyptic new Ice Age setting.
  • Influence the plot with your choices, each containing various shades of morality that lead to multiple endings.
  • Lead a group of survivors, each one with different needs, values and ideals.
  • Scavenge for items and hunt for food while facing the challenges of starvation, illness, harsh elements as well as other bands of survivors.
  • Over 400 pieces of detailed hand-drawn artwork illustrate the backdrop for the story.
  • Customize your character by choosing how to distribute attribute points among 3 main character traits and 10 different skills that effects your abilities and experience through the entire game.
ICY is out today for Windows PC and Mac on Steam, Humble Store and other major digital distribution channels. Gamers will enjoy a celebratory 25% discount during the launch week.

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ICY

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Baldur's Gate - In Depth Analysis

by Myrthos, 13:55

On our forums Lilura mentioned her/his blog is now covering the first two parts of the (expected) 10 part analysis of Baldur's Gate. The length of these two parts are already individually longer than an average review, so it is more than that. It is in any case an interesting read, if you are up to it.

Welcome to my Baldur's Gate review thing-a-mee! The following comments, criticisms and pro-tips pertain to BioWare's first RPG - Baldur's Gate (1998) & Tales of the Sword Coast (1999), patched to 5512; so, what follows is based on the original release and expansion only. While fixes, tweaks and various ambitious mods have long-existed that fix glitches, bugs and change the game-play, my concern is just with Baldur's Gate (& TotSC) as BioWare released it, "warts n all". Much of what I write here is from a somewhat fuzzy memory, so if I get something blatantly wrong please don't hesitate to jump down my throat, so that I can correct it before I mislead too many... ok, let's get on with this!...

...BioWare eschewed a traditional, tactical turn-based combat system in favor of real-time with pause (RTwP) or "pause n play"; and while I personally would have preferred the former - as seen previously in Goldbox and Fallout (and subsequently in ToEE) - apart from the niggling imprecisions related to pathfinding and spacebar tapping (ie, pause), combat is free-flowing and still fairly tactical and satisfying. The player controls up to six combat units (i.e, a party of adventurers) in "point n click" fashion, assigning them tasks singularly or as marquee-selectable groups. The basic combat flow is: "pause the game when enemy sighted, assign commands to your units (move, attack, cast spell, backstab etc.), unpause and observe what unfolds, pause again to make adjustments and assign more commands, rinse n repeat until enemy is dead". I'll write in-depth on melee, ranged and spell-casting combat in the follow-up to this post.

Baldur's Gate

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details