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Thursday - July 02, 2015
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Picture Watch

South Park: The Stick of Truth
Box Art

Poll Watch

Did The Witcher 3 Live Up to the Hype?
Absolutely
57.58%

For the most part
23.23%

Really don't know
11.11%

Maybe a bit
2.02%

No Way
6.06%

Vote

Thursday - July 02, 2015

ES4: Oblivion - A Fluent Let's Play in 4K Resolution!

by Fluent, 19:12

Hello everyone! Smile

I recently decided to try my hand at modding Oblivion a bit, and I thought, "Why not make a Let's Play in 4K resolution with lots of mods running?". So, I started one! 

I have many graphical mods running in this Let's Play, as well as Oscuro's Oblivion Overhaul, which as you may or may not know completely overhauls the level-scaling and encounter design in the game, amongst other things! So, this is going to be a BRAND NEW, fresh Let's Play that you may have not seen the likes of in other Let's Plays!

Please note, the 4K option on YouTube, at least on my end, seems a bit buggy at the moment. The videos of mine I can actually view in 2160p60 play very choppy for no real good reason. Perhaps your luck will be better, or the problem will be fixed soon on YouTube's end. I assure you that if the video looks choppy on your end, it is not my fault, but rather something strange with YouTube's 4K resolution settings. Undecided

All that said, it should work perfectly fine in 1080p60, and perhaps even 2160p60. 

So, I hope you enjoy! Here is Episode 1.

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Hey everyone! Wow! Today's video is super exciting because it is the first episode of a new Let's Play I'm doing in 4k resolution! That's right, all of the videos of this Let's Play will be available in stunning Ultra High Def (UHD), 2160p!

If you don't have a 4k display, fear not. The videos will still be available in 1080p60, and best of all, they will benefit from being downscaled from 4k resolution, so even the 1080p video will look better than ever! Sweet!

NOTE - This video was encoded at 32,000 bitrate. In future episodes (episodes after #2), the videos will be encoded at over 50,000 bitrate. In less words, the quality is going to get even better going forward!! =)

So, in this first episode I create my character and tackle the beginning dungeon of the game. I have many mods running, such as mods to give the characters better faces and many other graphical enhancement mods! We'll explore them all in detail as the Let's Play progresses.

Let me know what you think in the comments! Thanks for watching! Sealed

ES4: Oblivion

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC, Xbox 360, PS3
Release: Released

Details

Anachronox - Retrospective @Armchair Empire Infinite

by Gorath, 18:58

Jeff let us know he has posted a retrospective on Ion Storm's RPG classic Anachronox on his gaming blog The Armchair Empire Infinite. It seems his blog is the re-invention of the well-known similarly named gaming site.

Really, Anachronox was a breath of fresh air when so many other RPGs coming out on PC were being so serious, and singularly focused in what kind of gameplay they wanted. Granted a lot of those games were great, but with Ion Storm's project it got people thinking, "Hey, this works too!" Unfortunately, we didn't see others trying to follow suit here. As such, Anachronox will go down as an unique and largely successful attempt at combining a large cast of characters and a vast array of gameplay elements that one might think would never work together, then actually succeeds in bringing them all together. It was a great game when it came out, still is now, and should be applauded for how ambitious it is.

Anachronox

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

Details

Legends of Eisenwald - Release Trailer

by Hiddenx, 18:58

Release Day for Legends of Eisenwald:

Trailer:

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Live action video:

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Legends of Eisenwald

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

Details

Van Helsing - Final Cut Edition Announced

by Gorath, 16:36

Neocore Games announced a version integrale with content from all the Van Helsing games:

Indie developer NeocoreGames announces The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Final Cut

We're proud to announce that NeocoreGames has sold over 1 Million copies of individual titles in this incredible Action RPG trilogy so far. This milestone is a great opportunity to give back something to the loyal community.

By reading hundreds of forum posts, blog comments, reviews, feedbacks on various media, the developers of the trilogy conceived a definitive version of the adventure, coming this September.

The game is a standalone product thatcombines campaign content from all three games with modified or added contentprovides over 50 hours of gameplay in the campaign modelets the player choose between 6 playable classes from the beginninghas a reworked and extended skill tree systemcontains all the towerdefense game modes, all made optional yet highly rewarding
has a level cap of 80 (campaign) and 100 (with other game modes)

Whether the player has completed the campaign or not, it is possible to
create a new character or get a level 80 character from the beginning
play one of the 20 scenario maps that can randomly assemble terrain, monsters, objectives and conditions
try out the daily quests, challenges and weekly events
join one of the refined multiplayer modes (4-player co-op mode, touchdown, arena, or battle royal)
reach level 100 and evolve further with an endgame featuring a Glory system, rare items and currency, Dreamshards
The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Final Cut will be available as a standalone title on Steam.

It will cost absolutely nothing for players who own all three games of the trilogy (by that we mean it will be free). For new players, the complete and extended content of the Final Cut will cost $44.99.

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Final Cut will be released in September 2015, and will continue to provide content for a long time to come.

Van Helsing

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

Details

ELEX - New Piranha Bytes Game Announced

by Gorath, 14:40

As expected yesterday's rumors were true. Piranha Bytes cooperates with Nordic Games to create a new action-RPG named Fallout Arcanum ELEX. The PR tells their core audience all the right things. I've highlighted a couple of them:

Nordic Games + Piranha Bytes = ELEX 
July 2, 2015

The creators of Gothic turn over a new leaf together with Nordic Games and tackle their first new, collaborative project: ELEX

Nordic Games teams up with veteran studio Piranha Bytes to work on their first collaborative and new project: ELEX. This eclectic, lavish, exhilarating, xenial open-world RPG is scheduled to release in Winter 2016/2017 on PC and current gen console platforms. This is by far the most ambitious project for Piranha Bytes and Nordic Games to date.

“To say we are excited to see this new project unfold in the hands of Piranha Bytes is an understatement. ELEX is going to be edgy, dark, uncompromising, complex, and we love it already,“ comments Reinhard Pollice Business & Product Development Director at Nordic Games. “We will be premiering a vertical slice build at Gamescom 2015, more info will be released in due time.”

“Apart from being enthusiastic about the cooperation with Nordic Games, it is great to know, that we will have ample creative freedom with ELEX, which is a very important factor for us” said Björn Pankratz, Game Director at Piranha Bytes. "We can't wait to show you a completely new game experience with a fresh setting, new assets and plenty of possibilities."

About ELEX

ELEX is a handcrafted action role-playing experience from the award-winning creators of the Gothic series, set in a brand new post-apocalyptic science fantasy universe that puts players into a huge, seamless game world full of original characters, mutated creatures, deep moral choices and powerful action.

ELEX

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release: In development

Details

Van Helsing III - Review @ GameBanshee

by Hiddenx, 06:44

Steven Carter (GameBanshee) has reviewed Van Helsing III and he was not impressed at all:

(...) When enemies die, they of course drop gold and equipment, but sadly the loot tables are terrible.  I rarely had enough gold to try out the money sinks in Van Helsing's lair (including gambling, enchanting and forging), and even though my character had over 300% magic find for half the game (and ended up around 450%), I only found five unique items total, and no set items.  And that's with a couple of encounters where I'm pretty sure you're guaranteed to find unique items.  Dull combat coupled with no loot is not a recipe for success for an action RPG.

Meanwhile, the campaign is also sub-par.  Once again you get lots of nice banter between Van Helsing and Katarina, but that's about it.  There are only a minimal number of side quests, and almost none of them give you any choices (and where there are choices, I couldn't tell if they actually changed anything, like when you choose a torture method in your lair, and the only difference is whether your jailor sings to or reads poetry to your captive).  Worse, the main quests are DOA.  They just direct you from map to map as you hunt down Prisoner Seven.  "Make your way through Map A.  Make your way through Map B.  Now make your way through Map C."  That's how exciting the main storyline is.

Of course, along with the standard action RPG fare, the Van Helsing titles are also known for their tower defense mini-games, and Van Helsing III is no exception.  Sadly though -- well, sadly if you enjoy the mini-games like I do -- there are only three of them in the game, and they are a lot less about setting up your defenses than they are about Van Helsing killing everything himself.  This seems like a strange decision by Neocore Games.  The campaign should be where Van Helsing kills stuff, and the tower defense sequences should be more about the towers, but that's not how it is.  So along with everything else, I was disappointed by the mini-games, too. (...)

Conclusion
Well, bleah.  That's my executive summary for The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III.  I enjoyed the first two games in the trilogy, but this final entry felt like Neocore Games couldn't wait to move onto something new, and so they only put a minimal amount of effort into completing it.  There are too many bugs, the balance is awful, the new classes aren't as fun as the old ones, and the campaign is dull.  You still get witty banter between Val Helsing and Katarina, but that can't make up for the rest of the drek.  Maybe at some point Neocore Games will corral what they have into a reasonable package (in fact, they are), but for now Van Helsing III has too many problems to be a reasonable purchase, even at its modest asking price.

Van Helsing III

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

Details

Piranha Bytes - New Game for Nordic Games?

by Gorath, 03:35

Straight from the rumor mill: Currently the internet explodes and the hivemind says the new Piranha Bytes project is a new game called Elex Nordic teased. World of Risen and NeoGAF members are convinced they've seen a masked Piranha Bytes logo on the Elex page, which has been replaced in the meantime.

Both companies have an ongoing business relationship: Nordic distributes or publishes Gothic 2 & 3 since JoWooD's demise.

Nordic Games' countdown ends today at 14:00 CET, Piranha Bytes' on Friday.

Thanks Moriendor!

Piranha Bytes

Details

Wednesday - July 01, 2015

DungeonRift - Fun Dungeoncrawler

by Hiddenx, 22:08

DungeonRift is a new fun game at Steam:

DungeonRift is arena-like dungeon crawl where your enemies grow and learn new perks instead of you. Every time you defeat them, the Rift will rebuild the dungeon around you and grant your enemies with more tools to defeat you.

Alpha gameplay:

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Steam

Details

Legends of Fire & Steel - New Kickstarter

by Hiddenx, 21:57

Boomzap Entertainment started a Kickstarter for a new strategy game:
Legends of Fire & Steel:

Welcome to our Kickstarter page! Legends of Fire & Steel is a turn-based multiplayer strategy game we’re currently developing for mobile tablets, PC and Mac OSX.

About the Game

Legends of Fire & Steel is a strategy game designed from the ground up to be playable on a tablet or on a PC/Mac. The goal is to make a game that has the feel of a large, epic strategy game like Civilization, Crusader Kings 2, or Heroes of Might and Magic, but with the shorter playtime and simple controls of a game like Risk, Lux, or FTL. A game that is easy to learn, fast to play, but which offers enough choice to make it interesting to play over and over again.

Game Features

Classic fantasy world conquest strategy game with simple, intuitive controls that play well on PC, Mac, iOS and Android tablets

  • Wide range of heroes to choose from, each with different tactical powers and abilities
  • Single player campaigns: Follow the war of the races across the lands, unlock new maps and heroes, and discover new lands.
  • Turn-based simultaneous multiplayer game with Ranked and Casual Play, friend finder, rankings, and leader boards.
  • Collect Hero Cards: unlock new heroes and expand your hero selection.

Gameplay

Legends of Fire & Steel is a classic territory capture game with an element of team picking. In the game, players create armies which are led by heroes and used to capture territories in order to provide resources and build new units and heroes.

Control your heroes across the map and build forces with the racial units. Each unit and hero has particular strengths, weaknesses, and tactical powers. They can be upgraded to make them more powerful, and new heroes can be unlocked using your hard-won resources. The objective is to capture all of your opponent’s castles and it’s up to you to figure out how to spend each turn.

Each round provides a variety of actions for heroes to perform:

  • Hire - hire, upgrade, or unlock units for your armies
  • Organize - exchange units between heroes, cities and occupied lands
  • Occupy - put a territory under player control
  • Raze - collect a large sum of resources from owned territories, with the cost of making the land unable to produce for a number of turns
  • Heal - restore knocked out units from skirmishes
  • Defend - give a defense bonus for that turn

(...)

Kickstarter

Details

Serpent in the Staglands - Review @ Niche Gamer

by Hiddenx, 21:14

Carl Batchelor (Niche Gamer) has reviewed Serpent in the Staglands - some snippets:

Serpent In The Staglands Review – This Snake Doesn’t Scale To Your Level

It’s reached the point where using the term “old school” while describing an RPG means about as much as the  New England Patriots winning the Super Bowl. Having lost a lot of its effectiveness as a term of splendor and awe, being old school doesn’t seem to mean as much as it once did. With Kickstarter, the indie revival, and Steam Greenlight still going strong, it’s hard to play the “we don’t get enough of these games” card.

That being said, there are still games out there that can use the moniker, it’s just that in this writer’s opinion, they have to go the extra mile to earn it. Simply having pixel graphics, turn-based combat and a deep statistical underpinning isn’t enough. Perhaps the developers behind Serpent in the Staglands were aware of this, because if any game out there deserves to use the term, it’s this one.

Serpent in the Staglands, which I’ll be calling Staglands from here on out, first attracted me to it by showing off those slick Ultima 7 inspired visuals. Though I’m not fond of the old and decrepit pixelated graphics these games embrace, I was impressed that the developers aped the style from one of my favorite classic DOS era CRPGs instead of just throwing together something low-fi while hiding their inability to do world design within the wide umbrella of nostalgia. (...)

Like any good European CRPG, Staglands isn’t looking to hold your hand or babysit you. It may pit you against hordes of non-leveled foes, but it does at least give you plenty of powers. Matter of fact, the powers it gives you access to are pretty robust for an indie game developed by a very small studio with little game development experience. The skill system, which is divided into three sub sections, contains over 50 different disciplines to specialize in.

Split between aptitudes, skills, and spells, the game gives you plenty of ways to craft a unique combatant in what is a completely classless system. While skills are the typical “Increase critical rate” or “Bash an enemy for 1d3 damage with a shield” sort of thing, the spell and aptitude part of it is a bit more exciting.

Spells are not held back by mana points or cooldown rates like in most other RPGs. In Staglands, a spell can be fired off as many times and for as long as you so desire. This helps a lot, since magic is extremely powerful in the game and having at least two dedicated casters in your group is an absolute must. Though there are only three levels of spells (a 4th will be introduced in the upcoming expansion), you do get a very wide variety of incantations within each of those levels.

The real beauty is in the aptitude section of the skills, where occupational abilities come into play. Including abilities woodwise, linguistics, nobility, herbology, philosophy and harbinger, the aptitude part of the game’s character creation system is the most important one to master.

It’s also the most difficult, since the real uses of these skills are hidden and not talked about in either the manual or their in-game descriptions. (...)

Verdict 8.0

Pros:

  • Beautiful looking world, even with the pixels
  • Highly non-linear
  • Deep character creation & customization
  • long quest, lots of content for an indie game

Cons:

  • Combat feels lopsided, AI can be tricked very easily
  • No quest journal, easy to lose track of goals
  • Overall lack of user-friendliness

Serpent in the Staglands

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

Details

Bard's Tale IV - Game Details

by Myrthos, 18:42

This Kickstarter update for The Bard's Tale IV teaches us that the part size has been increased to six.

First off, we have read your arguments regarding expanding the party, and heard you! So we have decided to expand the player party size to six, one of which will be a companion NPC. Additionally, you will have summoned creatures and the like to aid you, which will not count against your party cap. Currently, our plan is to allow you to summon as many additional creatures as there are available grid slots.

There is this on classes.

As discussed in a previous update, we're bringing back a lot of the classes and races from the original trilogy, with your options expanding to ten character classes and over seven unique races. Furthermore, we're also planning on expanding the class evolution concept from the classic games' classes to cover all of our character classes – leading to huge amounts of depth and customization. You'll be able to further define, specialize and tinker with your character as he or she reaches certain levels, choosing groups of unlocked spells, abilities and talents in order to best suit your needs or party make-up. We'll have more precise details to share on this in a future update.

There is a touch point document covering what the current vision on the game is, which has this scope:

  • Over thirty beautiful levels to explore.
  • Locations including Skara Brae and the catacombs beneath it, towns such as Torr Fion and Fettercairn, wildernesses, castles, ruined temples and lost cities, as well as the legendary realms of the Elves, Dwarves and Trow.
  • Over a hundred different enemy types, including dozens from the original trilogy, as well as dozens of new creatures based on ancient Scottish, Orcadian, and Pict mythology. All-new enemy factions will oppose you: the Fecti, the Einaar, the Lestradae, and the Fatherites. We'll speak more on this lore in future updates!
  • Hundreds of usable items, many of which can be used in our crafting system to create consumables and special items.
  • Hundreds of unique weapons and armor to find; most can be enhanced through crafting, and many will be physically manipulated as a 3D model/puzzle to become more powerful.
  • Dozens of powerful magic spells, including some that allow the user to summon creatures to fight by their side.

And there is some details on the poem that is sung in the in-engine video and that they have teamed up with the Xounts sound system.

Bard's Tale IV

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

Details

Dark Souls - 8 Million Copies Sold

by Myrthos, 12:42

Destructoid informs us that the Dark Souls games have sold a total of 8 milion copies up to now, with over 3.25 million copies on PC.

Famitsu - reporting from a From Software presentation - confirmed the original Dark Souls game sold over 2.4 copies globally, while the game bundled with the DLC sold 2.6 million.

Dark Souls II has sold 2.4 million - 1.9 million sales of the original game, and 530,000 copies of the Scholar of the First Sin version. 

Remember: these figures don't even include sales from Demon Souls, nor Bloodborne.

 

Dark Souls

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

Details

Piranha Bytes - Announcement On Friday

by Gorath, 12:30

Now Piranha Bytes also follows the trend to post announcements of announcements. They posted a pic with a cryptic message on Facebook yesterday, supposedly meaning "3 days left". So far it seems Piranha Bytes is not working on the project everybody wants to see.

Found on World of Risen.

Piranha Bytes

Details

InSomnia - Inventory, Items Repair and Crafting

by Myrthos, 12:28

In the latest update for Insomnia, we learn about the durability of items and repair:

All items has their own durability in game. For example each time you attack someone your weapon durability decreases - the same happens with your armor whenever you get damaged. When items durability gets too low the negative effects will follow and it will be much harder to repair them. So basically it's in your best interest to keep your things in good order.

To fix your stuff you will need special instruments and appropriate skill. You will also need a certain amount of resources (depends on the type of the item and its overall condition) to perform the repairs. If you don't succeed your equipment stays unfixed and you loose all the resources you've used while trying.

The crafting system:

You will be able to create new items using workbenches of different types: for creating medical supplies; for mechanical objects; for hi-tech objects; for disassembling and assembling all kinds of ammo.

So whenever you'll feel like crafting something, you should send your character to appropriate workbench and use it. This way you'll see your current inventory with all available resources for crafting purposes and a list of items you can build.

And the inventory:

Shoulder bags are very important as they are directly connected with capacity and maximum weight your character is able to carry. In other words capacity and weight parameters means how much items you can keep in your inventory.

Your character can carry up to 150% of maximum weight. The same second you'll pass that mark no more items can be placed in your inventory. Starting with 90% your character will start to feel the negative effect of "Overload" which will get him tired much faster.

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Thanks Farflame.

InSomnia

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

Details

Fallout 4 - Cooling the Hype @ TechRaptor

by Hiddenx, 07:52

Don Parsons of TechRaptor wants to cool down the Fallout 4 hype a bit:

So this is probably going to get me killed. But alas I hold it as my sacred duty to tell the truth even when I suspect that truth is not wanted—even if others may disagree. I think Fallout 4 right now is being massively overhyped and there are a lot of points to look at as to why. (...)

Looking at Bethesda's game series, Don analyzes some negative trends in:

  • Past Promises
  • The Engine and Combat
  • Removing RPG Elements
  • That Crafting System
  • Radiant Systems
  • Large Areas of Nothingness
  • Dialogue, Writing and Story

Fallout 4

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

Details

Fallout - Why Fallout Is the Best Nuclear War Story Ever Told

by Hiddenx, 07:24

Matthew Gault (Medium.com) writes about the Fallout series:

(...) Video games are huge business, sales of electronic entertainment have surpassed movies, books and television for several years now. But more than that, video games are art. The medium possesses the unique ability to transport a player to another world completely.

Like films and TV, it’s a visual medium where the creator’s vision is explicit. But like books, video games often create unique, beautiful worlds that trigger the user’s imagination while providing dozens of hours of entertainment.

Like all art, the best video games tell us something unique about the human condition in general and the culture that created them in particular.

That’s what Fallout does best — it’s a 20-year-old video game franchise that helped the MTV generation understand, mock and control its elders’ Cold War paranoia.

Fallout is set in a post-apocalyptic world as conceived by American 1950s Defense Department propagandists. It’s a world in which the grandchildren of the Cold War conjured the fear of the previous generation and dispelled that fear by turning it into a playground. (...)

Fallout

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

Details

Path of Exile - The Awakening Release Date

by Hiddenx, 07:05

The biggest expansion for Path of Exile to date, The Awakening launches on July 10.

New Trailer:

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Path of Exile

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

Details

King's Quest - New Trailer & Release Date

by Hiddenx, 06:54

Sierra has announced the release date for the first chapter of the new five-part Kings Quest series. The first part is called Kings Quest: A Knight to Remember:

The First Quest Begins July 28th!

King’s Quest is a collection of five different chapter releases, each focusing on an untold tale in Graham’s past. In each chapter, an aging King Graham reflects on his life of adventure with his granddaughter, Gwendolyn, while players are transported back to influence first-hand the decisions and events that shaped a kingdom. Embark on an extraordinary journey across the world of Daventry.

New Trailer:

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King's Quest

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

Details

Tuesday - June 30, 2015

Gothic 2: NotR - In 4K Resolution!? It's True!

by Fluent, 23:13

Hey Watchers! Smile

In this exciting video I take a look at Andre aka degenerated's D3D11 Renderer mod for Gothic 2. This video was shot in 4K resolution at 2160p, so if you have a 4K display, make sure to watch in 4K!

Please note - It sometimes takes YouTube several hours to several days to render the proper 2160p footage, so if it doesn't show up for you, check back later!

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Hey everyone! In this exciting video, I showcase Andre aka degenerated's D3D11 renderer in full 4k resolution! Yes, the mod supports 4k resolution, and the end result looks fantastic!

Even if you don't have a 4k display, fear not. The video will downscale to 1080p and you will get the bonus of watching an excellent quality 1080p video, since the downscaling from 4k makes 1080p look even better than usual!

Hope you enjoy! To follow Andre's work, check out this thread on World of Gothic. http://forum.worldofplayers.de/forum/threads/1438917-D3D11-Renderer-f%C3%BCr-Gothic-2-%28alpha%29-14

Enjoy! Cool

Gothic 2: NotR

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

Details

CrossCode - Review @ Rock, Paper, Shotgun

by Hiddenx, 22:22

Marsh Davies (Rock, Paper, Shotgun) has reviewed the Early Access game CrossCode - some snippets:

You play as Lea, a spheromancer class avatar – which is a better title than ballromancer at least – and is seemingly a part-flesh, part-virtual body, supposedly manipulated by some distant player. The game being played is CrossWorlds, an MMO which is like Tron mashed with The Crystal Maze and set in Centerparcs. Its hills, lakes and forests form a virtually augmented but otherwise physical space, maintained by a cast of humans who must don special visors to see all aspects of the reality in which you operate.

The MMO itself appears to have an ambiguous though clearly important role in this future culture, and its avatars inspire reactions veering between veneration and revilement. Though exactly who you are is unclear – a dramatic, playable prologue poses a huge number of questions as to your identity and purpose, which the ensuing game doesn’t look like it’s going to answer any time soon, since Lea loses both her memory and her voice. It’s a surprisingly multilayered fiction, which, despite the chirpy caricatures, feels like it might go bleakly Ghost in the Shell at any moment.(...)

There’s more to this world than balls, though. There are items to harvest which can be turned into recipes and traded for weapons or equipment – though this all seems a bit bewilderingly random at present. NPCs have quests for you, too. Currently, one requires you to locate thirty-odd boxes hidden around the rolling hills of Autumn’s Rise, a leafy landscape comprised of 16 substantial contiguous locations and two challenge arenas. This takes the form of a sort of geographical puzzle – the boxes are often easy to spot but hard to reach: Lea can’t scale changes in elevation greater than her own height, though she’ll automatically bound across large gaps between pieces of terrain at the same level. And so you work backwards from the place you want to get to, unravelling the navigable route: a series of rocky stacks that will act as stepping stones; an escarpment you can leap down; a path implied, but hidden from the camera by a row of trees.

I would, however, say that the ingenuity of this sort of puzzle does not survive thirty-odd examples, and the game sorely, sorely needs a way to clearly distinguish between terrain at different heights. One of the features of this sort of perspective is its lack of foreshortening – there’s no way to judge depth and so if a stack of rock is four units tall, but one unit closer to the foreground than a stack of rock that is three units tall, their top surfaces will appear to be adjacent – and, if their height is concealed by another piece of scenery, there is no way to judge whether or not you will be able to jump between them. My ideal fix would be a subtle hue or brightness change for each tier of elevation. (...)

CrossCode

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

Details

Barony - New Roguelike Released

by Arhu, 10:25

Ultima Underworld inspired 3D, first-person roguelike Barony has been released on Steam last week. The game has realtime combat and also features a Co-Op multiplayer mode for up to four players.

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About the Game

Barony is a 3D, first-person roguelike with cooperative multiplayer that brings back the cryptic and intricate designs of classic roguelikes such as Nethack and melds them with RPGs like Ultima UnderworldSystem Shock, and Daggerfall. Challenge is the calling card of this hard-boiled dungeon-crawler.

Features

  • Gameplay inspired by RPG classics like Ultima Underworld, System Shock, & Daggerfall 
  • Roguelike mechanics such as perma-death, random dungeons, cryptic messages, and more 
  • Meticulously narrated action that mimics the insane events one could expect to find in games like Nethack 
  • A complex yet intuitive drag & drop interface to manage items and character stats 
  • Cooperative multiplayer for up to 4 players over internet or LAN 
  • Hundreds of unique collectible items and loot, including several rare and mystical artifacts
  • Chock-full of secret areas, special levels, developer easter eggs, and more 
  • Bundled level editor, exposed assets, and simple file formats for easy hacking, modding & tinkering

The Story So Far

Barony tells the story of an undead lich named Baron Herx, who terrorized the town of Hamlet in a previous life and is now holding out in a vast subterranean complex known as the Devil's Bastion. As a single hero or a group of adventurers, it is your mission to descend the depths of his abode, confront him in his hellish lair, and destroy him forever. Whether you will simply meet your doom in the dungeons as many have before you or rise to victory against the Baron and his hellspawn is ultimately up to you.

 

Barony

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Roguelike
Platform: PC, Mac, Linux
Release: Released

Details

Wasteland 2 - Director's Cut Preview @ RPGFan

by Arhu, 09:23

An hands-on preview of Wasteland 2: Director's Cut was posted at RPGFan. Apparently the game has a lot in common with the original Fallout.

The team at InXile Entertainment have a commitment to the old-school. Beginning with one of the most successful crowd-funded initiatives, they've followed up the original Wasteland 2 with a newer, more refined Director's Cut Edition. Amongst all of the hustle and bustle of E3, they were gracious enough to give us a hands-on look at this new version. Upon walking into their booth, I was immediately asked if I was a fan of the original Fallout. Now, to anyone that's played the game, this is a very fair question. The game plays and controls in almost the exact same manner as Fallout, and could even exist in the same world (or at least a similar one). However, this ended up becoming a theme for my entire time with the updated Wasteland 2.

Wasteland 2

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

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One Samurai: Dusk - Developer Blog

by Hiddenx, 08:03

You can follow the development of One Samurai in this blog. It has 13 entries already.

From Steam:

OneSamurai: Dusk is a turn based tactical RPG set in the Kamakura Era of Feudal Japan. Experience a choice based narrative In the Shogunate of Kamakura, quarrelling clans war against one another and on the silk road the eyes of Kublai Khan and his Mongol Empire turn east.

Story

The year is 1274 and the Kamakura Shogunate is celebrating the 82nd year since its establishment by Minamoto no Yoritomo. The current shogun Prince Koreyasu is also celebrating his 10th birthday under the regency of Hojo Tokimune. But all is not as stable as it seems. Only 16 years earlier the ruling Goryeo dynasty of Korea was forced to swear fealty to Kublai Khan the grandson of Genghis Khan and his Mongol Horde. Kublai Khan has aspirations to conquer from the coast of the Atlantic to the coast of the Pacific and his gaze may soon fall east. Inside Japan’s borders itself many different clans vow for land, power and strength and some for the chance to eventually rule the land of the rising sun for themselves. You start as a single man with no clan, land, power or strength but in end may have the potential to divert the course of Japanese history.

Features

  • Turn based tactical combat.
  • Stats based levelling.
  • Open world with over 50 unique villages, towns, cities and castles.
  • Over 150 quests covering events of Kamakura shogunate and clan quarrels.
  • Over 30 Different Clans who you can both help and oppose.
  • Different classes with different play styles.
  • 3 different companions with different play styles to complement your own or oppose it.
  • Decisions system which can change the outcome of the final game.
  • Ability to import character from this game to next.
  • Chance to help clans in territorial conflict and increase their personal strength.

One Samurai: Dusk

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

Details

Legends of Eisenwald - Gift for Early Access Participants

by Hiddenx, 07:50

Aterdux announced yesterday:

We expressed already our gratitude to all players who made possible development of our game and bought it on Early Access. But we think (and there is even a character in the game like that) that actions are more important than words. Therefore, we thank you all one more time and we are happy to announce that all who got the game on Early Access will receive as a gift extra content – map Road to the Iron Forest which is a prequel to the main campaing. This map is done already but not tested and not translated to other languages. We plan to add it to the game as DLC within the next few months.

Legends of Eisenwald

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

Details

Witcher 3 - New Free Quest

by Hiddenx, 07:19

Later this week one new DLC will be released: Where the Cat and Wolf Play

Spotted by henriquejr

 

Witcher 3

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

Details

Monday - June 29, 2015

General News - Exciting Upcoming Updates

by Myrthos, 17:41

Rock, Paper, Shotgun has made a list of the 8 most exciting updates that are coming our way in the "near" future, consiting of the games: Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition, Wasteland 2: Director’s Cut, Shadowrun: Hong Kong, Roehm To Ruin/The Order Of The Thorne, The Witcher 3 (DLCs), Baldur’s Gate III, Pillars of Eternity (DLC's) and Dead State Reanimated (which is already available).

 

General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Bard's Tale IV - Here Comes MCA

by Myrthos, 17:27

As some have guessed, the participation of Chris Avellone to design a dungeon is now a stretchgoal for The Bard's Tale IV. In this case a stretch goal at $1.9 million dollars. In addition Colin McComb will join the team to design a dungeon at $1.7 million.

Some exciting news today. You asked for him, now help us get him, the one and only Chris Avellone!!

If you’re not familiar with Chris, he and I go back together to the mid-90s when he worked on the legendary cRPGs Planescape: Torment (as Lead Designer) and Fallout 2. Afterwards he co-founded Obsidian Entertainment and was the Creative Director. There he worked on many of their games, including being the Lead Designer of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and a senior designer on Fallout: New Vegas. We have very successfully worked with him before on Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera, a co-operation that is still ongoing to the joy of both parties!

Chris’ involvement will be locked in the moment we pass the $1.9 million mark on the Kickstarter, where he’ll be designing the Cairn of Horrors, an all new dungeon built from the worst things that live in the imagination of Chris Avellone. The Cairn has one purpose, and that purpose is to kill you. Here’s what Chris had to say:

"I owe my career to seeing Bard's Tale II on a Commodore 64 at a friend's house. When I saw the streets of Skara Brae up and running (gasp - in simulated 3D! And in color!), I suddenly realized I didn't have to be the game master all the time in order to get my RPG fix, there was finally someone out there who had done the formidable job of creating a digital dungeon master for RPG aficionados with the same amount of lazy players as I had. So I have Brian Fargo to thank three times - first for the game itself (and all the Interplay RPGs I played to follow, including Bard's Tale I, Bard's Tale III, and Wasteland), second, for hiring me at Interplay, and third, for asking me to be a part of Bard's Tale IV - with your support, I hope we can make it happen!"

Additionally, at that funding level we’ll also make representations of your characters in your inventory screen and you’ll be able to see the gear, clothing and equipment they’re wearing, rather than a paper doll.

Along with Chris, we’re also bringing back the second Designer of Planescape: Torment and Creative Lead of Torment: Tides of Numenera, the inestimable Colin McComb! He will join our team at $1.7 million, designing a dungeon set in the Realm of the Elves, because we all know no one has mastered the craft of the Elves as Colin has. 

And there is news of a new wilderness area, the Wilds of Lestras.

Bard's Tale IV

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

Details

Deus Ex: MD - About Gameplay Paths @ Polygon

by Arhu, 15:14

Polygon talked with Deus Ex: Mankind Divided's gameplay director Patrick Fortier at E3 and processed their interview in two articles about the different gameplay paths that make Deus Ex games what they are.

The first one primarily deals with the action / stealth duality in Deus Ex: MD:

In Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, players' options are in service of what Fortier calls "flow." And it's not just a philosophy. It's also a reflection of how he likes to play games.

He's making the game. He doesn't have the luxury of just playing angrily or stealthily. He has to do it all. And that's sort of a reflection of what most players do. As far as he can tell, most play a mix of stealth and action. His responsibility, he says, is to make both choices satisfying. For a developer to choose one over the other is a "trap" he refers to constantly.

Personally, he might prefer stealth in the abstract, but he's not the kind of player who gets spotted, pauses and reloads a checkpoint. He likes to see how it plays out. If he gets into a station where stealth is no longer an option, he'll bring out the guns. In the best games, he thinks, these things flow into one another, like a narrative wire weaving its way throughout the game.

 

The second article is about the four pillars that make a Deus Ex game, which are combat, stealth, hacking and social interaction.

"Those are fundamental things to the game experience," Fortier told Polygon at E3 2015. (..)

There may be four pillars, but as fans of Deus Ex should expect, they're all set against he backdrop of an unfolding story whose outcome you, as the player, will determine.

"Overall," he said, "they're all wrapped up into this tight rope of freedom and choice and consequences." (..)

Player choice, in other words, is the molten core of a Deus Ex game. Everything else, from the toolbox of weapons and superhuman powers to the unfurling narrative set in a cyberpunk future, serves that master. They're more than arbitrary augments. They are the tools players use to construct personalized outcomes in a world developers create.

They are, as Fortier says, links on a chain.

Deus Ex: MD

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

Details

Interstellaria - Explore Space in July

by Arhu, 14:23

Cold Rice Games' open world planet and space exploration sim/adventure/RPG Interstellaria is coming out on July 17th.

Explore New Worlds Robotco Travel to Distant Moons Cargo Runner

Interstellaria is a 2d space SIM/RPG/Sandbox game created in the same vein as the engaging space exploration games of the past. Inspired heavily by games like Starflight, Interstellaria is all about allowing the player to find their own adventure. Every star has something interesting to see, and every planet has it’s own unique feel. There are a number of unique encounters and hostile enemies to find. As captain, you are tasked with building your empire through diplomacy, trade, or force.

The game was funded via Kickstarter in December 2013 and will be released on Steam for PC, Mac and Linux. Here's the launch trailer:

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Interstellaria

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC, Mac, Linux
Release: In development

Details

7 Days to Die - Alpha 12 Preview Video

by Myrthos, 13:01

A preview video of the alpha build 12 for 7 Ways to Die has been made available.

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7 Days to Die

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Modern
Genre: Shooter-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details