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Shacknews Recent Articles http://www.shacknews.com/rss?recent_articles=1 en-us Shack Snack: October 1, 2014 http://www.shacknews.com/article/86536/shack-snack-october-1-2014 http://www.shacknews.com/article/86536/shack-snack-october-1-2014 <p>The Shack Snack continues to provide all of today's biggest news in a nice three minute chunk. Give it a look below, and be sure to subscribe on <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/Shacknewsgames/videos">YouTube</a>.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/COGGy-ye4I0"></iframe></p> <center> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/2606897-driveclub.jpg" width="600" height="338" /></div> <h3><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86524/playstation-plus-october-free-games-include-batman-arkham-asylum-driveclub-and-more">PlayStation Plus October free games include Batman: Arkham Asylum, DriveClub and more</a></h3> </center> <p>Sony has finally unveiled its free game lineup for October for its PlayStation Plus subscribers. This month, the company will, for the first time, be offering three free titles of games that are making their debut on the PlayStation Network. So without further ado, let&rsquo;s run down who gets what this month.</p> <center> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/Content_Announce_Blog.jpg" width="600" height="338" /></div> <h3><strong><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86523/the-sims-4-getting-free-content-starting-today">The Sims 4 getting free content starting today</a><br /></strong></h3> </center> <p>The spooky October update brings out the dead. Meaning that dead sims can now return as ghosts and become welcome members of the household. Ghost sims have all the attributes they had when they were alive and special animations depending on how they died. Dedicated players might even find a way to fully resurrect their lost sims.</p> <center> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/destiny-rare-legendary-engram-farming-guide.jpg" width="600" height="305" /></div> <h3><strong><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86529/destiny-102-patch-now-available-to-improve-engram-system">Destiny 1.0.2 patch now available to improve engram system</a><br /></strong></h3> </center> <p>Destiny's legendary 1.0.2 patch is now live across all platforms bringing with it changes to the Engram system that makes it a little easier to get the gear Guardians rightfully deserve. Guardians who now hand in purple engrams will start receiving legendary or better gear, which will make breaking the soft level cap Bungie put in place a little bit easier.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 20:30:00 PDT Steve Watts Amplitude hits the beat with a new gameplay video http://www.shacknews.com/article/86534/amplitude-hits-the-beat-with-a-new-gameplay-video http://www.shacknews.com/article/86534/amplitude-hits-the-beat-with-a-new-gameplay-video <p>It has been more than&nbsp;four months since Harmonix successfully funded its Kickstarter campaign to bring the 2003 cult classic game Amplitude back, updated for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 consoles. Ryan Lesser, Creative Lead on the game provides a first look at how the game is shaping up. The demonstration video reveals some of the music and updated gameplay features fans can look forward to as development marches forward.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="390" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jyaFPTS3qXw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 16:30:00 PDT Steven Wong Tetris film adaptation in the works http://www.shacknews.com/article/86535/tetris-film-adaptation-in-the-works http://www.shacknews.com/article/86535/tetris-film-adaptation-in-the-works <p>Movie-goers&nbsp;sometimes express annoyance with Hollywood's lack of original ideas, and those people should probably stop reading this story now. Threshold Entertainment has announced it is working with The Tetris Company to develop a live-action movie based on Tetris.</p> <p><em>Tetris</em>.</p> <p><a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2014/09/30/tetris-movie/" target="_blank">The Wall Street Journal</a>&nbsp;reports that Threshold CEO Larry Kasanoff sees it as a "very big, epic sci-fi movie." He suggested that it won't be "a movie with a bunch of lines running around the page" and said they're not "giving feet to the geometric shapes." So far, the film does not have a director or cast attached, and it seems to be in the early development stages.&nbsp;</p> <p>Kasanoff himself was the producer behind Mortal Kombat and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. His company Threshold is known more for its licensed theme park rides based on Star Trek and the Justice League, though Kasanoff says he's open to developing Tetris in a similar way. "We certainly have the canvas for location-based entertainment based on the epicness."&nbsp;</p> <p></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 16:00:00 PDT Steve Watts AirMech Arena crosses over with Assassin's Creed http://www.shacknews.com/article/86532/airmech-arena-crosses-over-with-assassins-creed http://www.shacknews.com/article/86532/airmech-arena-crosses-over-with-assassins-creed <p>The free-to-play real-time strategy game AirMech Arena on Xbox Live announced that it now has more than one million players. To celebrate this landmark achievement, the game has revealed&nbsp;an unexpected crossover with the Assassin's Creed franchise. The&nbsp;will now feature both Assassin and Templar skins that can be applied to AirMechs and pets. Furthermore, the&nbsp;Assassin's Creed Novi Aquilis Neo AirMech (complete with cloaking) will face-off against the Templar's&nbsp;Abstergo Fortis Prototype and its death ray.&nbsp;Themed pets include the Spirit Eagle, the Apple of Eden, and the DNA Cube vial to give players that special edge in combat.&nbsp;</p> <p>Additional skins, units and maps are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.</p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/Novi_loadout2_1412152904.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="375" /></div> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/Abstergo_loadout_1412152902.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="338" /></div> <p></p> <p></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 15:30:00 PDT Steven Wong Pix the Cat coming October 7, Nostalgia Mode announced http://www.shacknews.com/article/86533/pix-the-cat-coming-october-7-nostalgia-mode-announced http://www.shacknews.com/article/86533/pix-the-cat-coming-october-7-nostalgia-mode-announced <p>Pix the Cat, the snake-like puzzle game for PlayStation 4 and Vita, is slated to release on&nbsp;October 7.</p> <p>Developer&nbsp;<span>Pastagames revealed the date on the <a href="http://blog.us.playstation.com/2014/10/01/pix-the-cat-launches-for-ps4-ps-vita-on-october-7th/#sf4923860">PlayStation Blog</a>, along with a look at a new game mode: Nostalgia. This mode replaces all of the visuals and music with a look and sound reminiscent of early black-and-white era animated cartoons and ragtime melodies. Your cat wll need to collect ducklings and avoid falling over the edge</span></p> <p>&ldquo;Pix the Cat&rsquo;s Nostalgia Mode gave me the opportunity to have fun adapting the charming old-fashioned touches from the classic black and white cartoons of the 1920s," said lead artist&nbsp;Herv&eacute; Barbaresi. "The challenge with this skin was to make you forget that you are controlling a video game character on a tiled grid. We have worked and re-worked the image filters (grain, B&amp;W pulse, glitches, dirt and scratches&hellip;) to create a look which really evokes the simple yet sophisticated feel of those old cartoons."</p> <p>The Vita version of Pix the Cat was announced as part of October's <a href="http://blog.us.playstation.com/2014/10/01/pix-the-cat-launches-for-ps4-ps-vita-on-october-7th/#sf4923860">PlayStation Plus</a>&nbsp;line-up today as well.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/hdmKeF7turc"></iframe></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 15:00:00 PDT Steve Watts PlayStation Vita themes coming tomorrow http://www.shacknews.com/article/86531/playstation-vita-themes-coming-tomorrow http://www.shacknews.com/article/86531/playstation-vita-themes-coming-tomorrow <p>Just yesterday, Nintendo displayed its <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86510/nintendo-3ds-themes-releasing-in-japan-this-october">snazzy 3DS themes</a>&nbsp;that are due to hit in October. Not to be outdone, Sony has shown off&nbsp;themes coming to Vita tomorrow.</p> <p>The system software update v3.30 will let you personlize the Start and Home screens, along with app icons and background music. A few&nbsp;non-game themes will be available from the start: Crystal, Four Seasons, Stitching. Game themes featuring Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Tearaway, and Freedom Wars are on the way. Both game and non-game themes will be available for purchase on the PlayStation Store.</p> <p>The update will also add Trophy rarity stats, and the ability to send event files to friends to set up game dates.</p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/15405250482_81b0e7f058_b.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="340" style="undefined" /></div> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 600px"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2014/10/15218822519_6414243421_b.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="340" style="undefined" /></div> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 14:05:00 PDT Steve Watts South Park Pinball table coming from Zen Studios http://www.shacknews.com/article/86530/south-park-pinball-table-coming-from-zen-studios http://www.shacknews.com/article/86530/south-park-pinball-table-coming-from-zen-studios <p>Zen Studios is best know for their Zen Pinball series. The development studios has been creating note-worthy virtual pinball tables for several years now, and today, the company has announced they&rsquo;ll be creating a table inspired by South Park.</p> <p>Details for South Park Pinball are still developing as Zen Studios announced its existence with a simple image in a post on the company&rsquo;s official <a href="http://blog.zenstudios.com/?p=4908">blog</a>. The image features Stan, Kyle, Cartman, and Butters looking in horror as a giant pinball has crushed their friend, Kenny.</p> <p>The pinball also serves as a way to tease the upcoming table as South Park Pinball can be seen in the ball&rsquo;s reflection. If you squint really hard, you could probably make out the overall layout of the table. If you rather not squint, then we suggest you hold off until Zen Studios releases more information sometime in the coming weeks.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 13:30:00 PDT Daniel Perez Destiny 1.0.2 patch now available to improve engram system http://www.shacknews.com/article/86529/destiny-102-patch-now-available-to-improve-engram-system http://www.shacknews.com/article/86529/destiny-102-patch-now-available-to-improve-engram-system <p>Destiny's legendary&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86483/destiny-102-patch-adding-engram-changes">1.0.2 patch</a>&nbsp;is now live across all platforms bringing with it changes to the Engram system that makes it a little easier to get the gear Guardians rightfully deserve.&nbsp;Guardians who now hand in purple engrams will start receiving legendary or better gear, which will make breaking the soft level cap Bungie put in place a little bit easier. The same goes for blue engrams, although the chance to receive a Legendary piece of gear has been increased.</p> <p>Other improvements Bungie has made to Destiny in today&rsquo;s patch includes the addition of blue and purple engram drops for completing daily and weekly heroic missions as well as the Vanguard: Tiger Strike Playlist. Tweaks to the Crucible have also been made that include reducing the time limit on certain maps and lowering how often some maps come up in certain playlists.</p> <p>For full patch notes, head on over to Bungie's official <a href="http://www.bungie.net/7_Update-102---Patch-Notes/en/News/News?aid=12235">website</a>.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 12:50:00 PDT Daniel Perez Pokemon X and Y offers free Pumpkaboo for Halloween http://www.shacknews.com/article/86527/pokemon-x-and-y-offers-free-pumpkaboo-for-halloween http://www.shacknews.com/article/86527/pokemon-x-and-y-offers-free-pumpkaboo-for-halloween <p>It's October, and that means it's time to start rolling out the usual suite of pumpkin-themed treats. Pumpkin pie, pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin Pokemon--you know, the ordinary, run-of-the-mill things.</p> <p>Pokemon X and Y are now offering an extra-large Pumpkaboo Pokemon through the Nintendo Network. He comes with specially themed moves like Treat-or-Treat and Scary Face, and comes with a Rocky Helmet to damage its attacker. The Super-Size version has more HP than the average Pumpkaboo.</p> <p>Grabbing him also grants you easy entry to the Trick-or-Treat Friendly Online Competition, which requires a Super-Size Gourgeist. You can get the Gourgeist by trading your Pumpkaboo to make it evolve. You can check out details of the promotion at the <a href="http://xy4.pokemontcgxy.com/halloween/en-us/" target="_blank">official site</a>.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 11:50:00 PDT Steve Watts Opinion: How Destiny can fix its end-game http://www.shacknews.com/article/86525/opinion-how-destiny-can-fix-its-end-game http://www.shacknews.com/article/86525/opinion-how-destiny-can-fix-its-end-game <p>Bungie&nbsp;has cast its lot in with Destiny for the long haul. Not only will it be iterating in some fashion for years to come, as per its long-term agreement with Activision, the initial offering is sure to receive regular updates and downloadable content. Bungie has already detailed a patch aimed squarely at addressing a widespread complaint about item randomization, but that raises the question of whether the core problems are too endemic for Bungie to fix with such minor changes.</p> <p>First, let me define the terms. When I talk of fixing or saving Destiny, I'm not&nbsp;saying that Destiny is a bad game at its core. My <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86325/destiny-review-ambition-versus-execution">review</a>&nbsp;called it an ambitious&nbsp;idea that falls short of its goals, and I stand by that. It's fundamentally&nbsp;solid, and the moment-to-moment combat is fun and engaging. It's the end-game that's&nbsp;severely lacking, in ways that will be difficult to address without seriously rethinking its approach. And as luck&nbsp;would have it, that's the part of the game Bungie intended to last the longest for players.</p> <p>Bungie assured both professional reviewers and casual fans alike that Destiny really comes to life after you've reached the level cap.&nbsp;Despite this being the kind of pat assurance that follows a lot of MMOs, it seemed reasonable enough. Weeks after its release, many players have reached the level cap, and they aren't seeing a game that's coming to life. They see it grinding to a halt.</p> <p>Progression is simply too slow once you reach level 20, and this is likely by design. Far from being the point at which the game comes into its own, this is where it stops being fun. Playing&nbsp;the same strike zones to ultimately shoot at bullet-sponge bosses, all in hopes of maybe-hopefully gaining a Legendary engram, feels like work.&nbsp;</p> <p>It's no wonder that Bungie and Destiny players are locked in a battle of wills, the former group patching and removing easy loot spots as the latter finds <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86495/exploring-a-destiny-loot-farm-on-venus">new ones</a>&nbsp;to farm. Shooting at a cave for five hours may not be how Bungie intended us to play Destiny, but it was far and away more enjoyable, and yields greater rewards than double that time in strike zones. If the studio wants this game to last, forcing slow and repetitive progression is the wrong way to go about it.</p> <p>Bungie has signaled a willingness to make significant changes based on fan feedback. The recent&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86483/bungie-102-patch-adding-engram-changes">1.0.2 patch</a>&nbsp;alters the random element of decoding engrams. Previously, players could take a Legendary (purple)&nbsp;engram to the Cryptarch and it would almost certainly be decoded into a Rare (blue). Given that Legendary equipment is the best way to boost your soft level past the hard cap of 20, players felt frustrated to find the promise of such equipment was taken away by random chance.</p> <p>After the update, purple now&nbsp;always yields purple or better, and blue always&nbsp;yields blue or better. The random element, Bungie says, was inserted to add an element of fun and mystery, but there's nothing fun about disappointment. The random element remains in place, but the promise that engrams will be decoded at their level or better means any surprises will be positive ones.&nbsp;</p> <p>The studio was even self-effacing about the change. "Cayde-6 took the Cryptarch aside and showed him a sack of doorknobs," read the update <a href="http://www.bungie.net/7_102-Patch-Preview/en/News/News?aid=12202">notes</a>. "He decoded that mystery pretty quickly."</p> <ul></ul> <p>This is a step in the right direction, albeit baffling that the original implementation ever passed muster during internal tests. The update is also said to increase the drops of rare and legendary engrams during Daily, Weekly, and Tiger Playlist activities. All of this is clearly meant&nbsp;to entice players more toward the intended gameplay aspects, and away from farming habits. We can't say yet whether the rewards those yield will be consistent enough to make the time investment worthwhile.</p> <p>However, this speaks to a more endemic problem that may not be within the scope of updates. In the late game, players are grinding for loot because they want higher levels, not because the game itself changes in any particularly significant way at that point. Access to Raids is nice, but what then? The circular nature of a loot grind is present in plenty of games, but it's especially apparent in one like Destiny. Better loot can only go towards beating harder versions of the same handful of bullet-sponge bosses you've already taken down. This is a common trope for RPGs, but a more active first-person shooter style, the lack of variety is much more pronounced.&nbsp;</p> <p>The nature of Destiny's combat system is very similar to Halo's, which is no surprise. It's built for numbers, not mass. Relying on your arsenal to take down swarms of enemies is fun. Emptying your clip into a huge beast in the center of the room 20 or so times isn't. That's why the initial campaign is so much more satisfying than the end-game. While the campaign has you plow&nbsp;through stages of foot soldiers and occasionally caps the festivities with a boss, the content after level 20 makes the grunts incidental and the bosses themselves the center of attention.</p> <p>Those factors together mean that players are forced to grind for loot by taking on dull bosses, all so they can hope to gain better gear to use against dull bosses. Without a more compelling way to gain loot, and more interesting encounters to use it against once we have it, the gameplay loop that Bungie attempted to design is broken at its core.</p> <p>The circle can be repaired to some extent. If Bungie makes more interesting strike zone missions, ones that aren't simply more time-consuming versions of ones we've already played, it will go a long way towards enticing players to take part. It could give&nbsp;us random assortments of enemies in randomized areas. It could let&nbsp;the grunts drop the epic loot&nbsp;more often, so that a single run through one of these enemy-heavy strike zones actually yields rewards. It could even take better account of the frequency of your drops for pacing purposes. Fixes exist, if Bungie does them right.</p> <p>Most importantly, these changes can't be relegated to the <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86489/report-destiny-dlc-expansion-packs-exposed-in-strange-bug-update-bungie-responds">paid downloadable content</a>. That content has to be additive for players who want to pay extra, not required for anyone who bought the game to continue enjoying it. Repairing the gameplay loop needs to be targeted at everyone, while the DLC serves to add extras like areas and subclasses.</p> <p>We know Bungie is listening, and we have a fairly clear image of how the studio could make Destiny's end-game a more compelling package. Some damage has already been done from word-of-mouth, but given its contrition over the Cryptarch, it's willing to admit mistakes and move on. If it does that soon related to these more fundamental game elements, Destiny could live on for quite a while.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 11:25:00 PDT Steve Watts PlayStation Plus October free games include Batman: Arkham Asylum, DriveClub and more http://www.shacknews.com/article/86524/playstation-plus-october-free-games-include-batman-arkham-asylum-driveclub-and-more http://www.shacknews.com/article/86524/playstation-plus-october-free-games-include-batman-arkham-asylum-driveclub-and-more <p>Sony has <em>finally</em> unveiled its free game lineup for October for its PlayStation Plus subscribers. This month, the company will, for the first time, be offering three free titles of games that are making their debut on the PlayStation Network. So without further ado, let&rsquo;s run down who gets what this month.</p> <p>PlayStation 4 owners will receive Dust: An Elysian Tail, Spelunky and and a PlayStation Plus edition of DriveClub. This marks the first time both Dust and Spelunky have become available on the PlayStation 4, although both titles should ring a bell to most gamers as they were previously released on other Sony platforms.</p> <p>PlayStation 3 owners get Batman: Arkham Asylum and Dungeons &amp; Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara, while PlayStation Vita owners can pick up Pix the Cat and Rainbow Moon. Pix the Cat can <em>also</em> be played on the PlayStation 4, while Rainbow Moon is available on the PlayStation 3 as well.</p> <p>This month&rsquo;s lineup of free titles for PS Plus titles is a pretty strong one as I&rsquo;ve played the majority of them in the past, except for Pix the Cat and DriveClub. I already know I&rsquo;m going to be spending an insane amount of time with Spelunky once I download it.</p> <p>What game are you most looking forward to from this list?</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/nqJwE7_nIpY"></iframe></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 09:55:00 PDT Daniel Perez The Sims 4 getting free content starting today http://www.shacknews.com/article/86523/the-sims-4-getting-free-content-starting-today http://www.shacknews.com/article/86523/the-sims-4-getting-free-content-starting-today <p>The Sims 4 keeps growing and evolving with free additional content. The <a href="http://www.thesims.com/news/ts4-announce-Oct14" target="_blank">Sims Blog</a>&nbsp;announced that there will be three updates coming to the game at no cost, and the first one is available now. The spooky October update brings out the dead. Meaning that dead sims can now return as ghosts and become welcome members of the household. Ghost sims have all the attributes they had when they were alive and special animations depending on how they died. Dedicated players might even find a way to fully resurrect their lost sims.&nbsp;</p> <p>An October themed update wouldn't be complete without some new costumes, so The Sims 4 is using its Force powers to bring in some Star Wars themed customization options. They include Luke's X-wing flight suit, Lea's white robe and cinnamon bun hair style, Darth Vader's suit, and even Yoda. There are also more eye colors available for your sims, which is a feature that has often been requested by the community.&nbsp;</p> <p>In November, swimming pools will make a big splash back into The Sims world (who wants to go swimming in November?). December will introduce new Career Paths and rewards, so have your sims update their resumes.&nbsp;</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 09:40:00 PDT Steven Wong Minecraft: Xbox One Edition lands on retail shelves this November http://www.shacknews.com/article/86522/minecraft-xbox-one-edition-lands-on-retail-shelves-this-november http://www.shacknews.com/article/86522/minecraft-xbox-one-edition-lands-on-retail-shelves-this-november <p>Minecraft made the jump to current-fen platforms a few weeks ago as both Xbox One and PlayStation 4 owners were able to play the title through downloading it on their respective digital marketplaces. For those who prefer to have physical media over digital, Microsoft has announced Minecraft: Xbox One Edition will be coming to a retail store near you on November 18.</p> <p>The retail version of Minecraft: Xbox One Edition will retail for $19.99, and just like the digital version, players have access to transferring their Xbox 360 content over to the Xbox One version. Unfortunately, the $4.99 upgrade discount Minecraft Xbox 360 owners received when purchasing the digital version of the Xbox One Edition will not apply to the retail disc version.</p> <p>If this is your first time getting into Minecraft and prefer physical media, then this looks to be your perfect opportunity to get in on the action. Otherwise, those who previously purchased the Xbox 360 version should just settle for the digital version in order to take advantage of the $4.99 discount.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 09:15:00 PDT Daniel Perez Civilization: Beyond Earth 'Discovery' trailer gives colonization how-to http://www.shacknews.com/article/86521/civilization-beyond-earth-discovery-trailer-gives-colonization-how-to http://www.shacknews.com/article/86521/civilization-beyond-earth-discovery-trailer-gives-colonization-how-to <p>October 24 can&rsquo;t come soon enough as that&rsquo;s when we all say goodbye to our day jobs and become a space colonialist. That&rsquo;s because Sid Meier&rsquo;s Civilization: Beyond Earth will be launched on that very day, and to better prepare us for what appears&nbsp;to be quite an epic adventure, 2K Games has released a new gameplay trailer called &ldquo;Discovery.&rdquo;</p> <p>As you could imagine from the name of the video, the video gives us a a brief overview of the story of Beyond Earth as well as giving helpful information as to how to successfully colonize a new alien world. The turn-by-turn gameplay preview will show players how best to adapt, purify or completely dominate an alien world if they choose to.</p> <p>Those who pre-order Civilization: Beyond Earth will receive the Exoplanets Map Pack for free, although we have a feeling most of you may have already submitted your pre-order a long time ago.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/p_jp88pnNzE"></iframe></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 08:50:00 PDT Daniel Perez Official Resident Evil community wants your stories of survival http://www.shacknews.com/article/86520/official-resident-evil-community-wants-your-stories-of-survival http://www.shacknews.com/article/86520/official-resident-evil-community-wants-your-stories-of-survival <p>Many of us have fond experiences getting the bejesus scared out of us while while playing some of Capcom&rsquo;s Resident Evil titles. Since Resident Evil: Revelations 2 and Resident Evil Remastered are both in the works, the Capcom community is absolutely frothing over being scared all over again once these two titles are released. To help pass the time, <a href="http://www.residentevil.net/en/news_topics-201409181453.html">ResidentEvil.net</a>, which serves as the series&rsquo; official community site, has come up with &ldquo;Resident Evil Recollections.&rdquo;</p> <p>Recollections will offer an overview of the entire Resident Evil series that includes an in-depth timeline that details the series&rsquo; chronological history. If you&rsquo;re like most gamers, you may need to brush up on your Resident Evil history prior to playing Revelations 2 or RE Remastered.</p> <p>ResidentEvil.net will also allow its users to contribute their own stories to its Recollections feature that will allow them to tell their own experiences with the Resident Evil series.</p> <p>Do you have a memorable Resident Evil moment? Feel free to share in the comments as we'd be interested to hear what kind of experiences you&rsquo;ve all had with some of the titles throughout the years.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 08:15:00 PDT Daniel Perez PlayStation Store promo offers $15 credit for $100 purchases http://www.shacknews.com/article/86519/playstation-store-promo-offers-15-credit-for-100-purchases http://www.shacknews.com/article/86519/playstation-store-promo-offers-15-credit-for-100-purchases <p>PlayStation Store customers who prefer to get their gaming fix digitally will want to throw all of their money in Sony&rsquo;s direction this month as they have <a href="http://blog.us.playstation.com/2014/10/01/get-15-for-spending-100-or-more-on-ps-store/#sf4920207">announced</a>&nbsp;a special promotion that rewards its customers with $15 in store credit for spending $100 or more.</p> <p>The promotion requires customers use their SEN Wallet in order for their purchases to qualify for this particular promotion. Customers also have the option to either purchase already released titles on the PlayStation Store or pre-order upcoming titles. If you&rsquo;ve been planning on picking up digital versions of PS4, PS3 or PS Vita titles, now would be the ideal time to make your purchases so you could earn $15 in store credit.</p> <p>Those who spend $100 or more on the PlayStation Store using their SEN Wallet will receive a redemption code for their $15 store credit on or before November 7th. The redemption code will be sent either via email, XMB message on PS3 or as a system notification on the PS4 or PS Vita. All redemption codes need to be redeemed by 11:59pm PT on December 5th.</p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 07:25:00 PDT Daniel Perez Might & Magic Heroes Online now available http://www.shacknews.com/article/86517/might--magic-heroes-online-now-available http://www.shacknews.com/article/86517/might--magic-heroes-online-now-available <p>Might &amp; Magic Heroes Online has finally been released after launching in limited beta earlier this year.</p> <p>Might &amp; Magic Heroes Online is said to be the most accessible game of the series yet as it features siege battles, forgotten site quests and a PVP arena. The title is a full-scale adaptation of the famous franchise that combines gameplay elements of the previous Heroes titles along with several online features that include guilds, friends and co-op gameplay. Heroes from either the Haven or Necropolic factions can be created while these Heroes can recruit creatures to help build up their army.</p> <p>Players interested in experiencing Ubisoft&rsquo;s free-to-play online role-playing game can head on over to the <a href="http://clb.heroes-online.com/en-US">official website</a>&nbsp;for Might &amp; Magic Heroes Online. There&rsquo;s no software to download, so checking it out wouldn&rsquo;t be that big of a commitment.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/YL3-_RQV0Qk"></iframe></p> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 06:30:00 PDT Daniel Perez Opinion: Windows 10: Ready or not, here it comes http://www.shacknews.com/article/86514/opinion-windows-10-ready-or-not-here-it-comes http://www.shacknews.com/article/86514/opinion-windows-10-ready-or-not-here-it-comes <p>Microsoft announced Windows 10 today, billing it as&nbsp;"the best one yet." We've heard that before. In fact, I think we've heard that line <em>several times</em> before. Whatever fate might await Windows 10, this is a crucial time for Microsoft to produce an operating system that appeals to gamers, because the competition has never been thicker.</p> <p>Microsoft has a fairly consistent history of winners and losers, averaging a win about every other operating system starting with Windows 95. Win95 was alright, but Win98 was definitely better. Windows ME is best left forgotten, while WinXP made for a great fallback as Windows Vista crashed and burned, then crashed again. Next came Windows 7, which I still much prefer over Windows 8, even after it was&nbsp;fixed up in&nbsp;the 8.1 update.</p> <p>You may be noticing a pattern. Microsoft releases a prototype Windows that people generally hate, then learns its lessons and incorporates whatever works best into the next iteration. If nothing else, the flops make us more appreciative of all the good parts of Windows. That being said, jumping over the Windows 9 name and going straight for "Windows 10" throws a wrench in the pattern. I'm almost certain that the reason why "it wouldn't be right to call it Windows 9" is because someone in marketing decided that people would be more attracted to a 10 than a 9. I can already see the ads now, stating that Windows is "a perfect 10." Or, maybe Microsoft needed to distance itself from Windows 8 with a whole version number. Fine, let Microsoft do what it has to, because Windows is being byset&nbsp;from all sides, and by both the usual and unlikely competetors, so it really <em>needs</em> to pull a perfect 10.</p> <p>Having given up on Windows 8.1, I'd take almost anything. I'm tired of its split-personality: Live tiles for touchscreen devices, and a watered down Desktop mode for keyboard and mouse use. I don't need a live tile system that looks like something that was lifted off the <a href="https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4081/4735986696_445af5fc00_z.jpg" target="_blank">Partridge Family Bus</a>. So, I'm sure many shared a collective sigh of relief to learn that Microsoft is bringing back the Start menu, even if it does have the Win8 live tiles attached.</p> <p>Most of the features appear to be more evolutionary than revolutionary, which fits neatly into the established pattern. Revolutionary Windows operating systems tend to have more bugs than an ant farm. I have to admit that I very much like handy tools like multiple desktops, and Snap functionality for four applications on one screen. I can't wait to do stupid things like run two MMO sessions and party with myself.</p> <p>All kidding aside, Windows 10 <em>has</em> to be good. Microsoft&nbsp;has no choice. Windows 7 is already over five years old, and it's really starting to show. I have to jump through hoops to do a clean install from a flash drive, not to mention the headaches I had with setting up an SSD boot drive. In the meantime, Mac OS has already changed more than&nbsp;five times. Moreover, iOS and Android are dominating the mobile scene. In charts comparing mobile device sales, Windows Phones are catagorized in a tiny sliver called "other." It's so unsuccessful that Microsoft doesn't even get its own category. Even though it's important for Microsoft to continue trying to break into the mobile arena, the emphasis has to stay on the desktop experience.&nbsp;More to the point, Windows 10 needs to be good for gaming. The vast majority of high-end computer games are still for Windows, but that could soon change.</p> <p>Years ago, Valve developed a platform called Steam in response to Microsoft's indifference toward video games. It has since grown into the biggest and most influential gaming service on the planet, and I believe that it was a major contributing factor in bringing the Windows platform and PC gaming back up to the top. Now Valve is poised to do something similar with SteamOS and Steam Machines. If SteamOS takes off the way Steam did, then Microsoft will lose its major advantage. Sure, PC gamers will need something to play today's games and some retro games, but they won't need Windows 10 or later to do it with. Plus, who is to say those games won't be ported to SteamOS? Alternatively,&nbsp;someone might develop a compatible emulator.</p> <p>Microsoft needs to give players a compelling reason to use their OS as the default, or they risk losing them altogether this time.&nbsp;Microsoft has to stick to the pattern and make Windows 10 a winner, or else it might really be game over as the de facto home for hardcore gamers.&nbsp;</p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 15:00:00 PDT Steven Wong Battlefield 4 trial offers 168 hours of gameplay on PlayStation 3 starting today http://www.shacknews.com/article/86516/battlefield-4-trial-offers-168-hours-of-gameplay-on-playstation-3-starting-today http://www.shacknews.com/article/86516/battlefield-4-trial-offers-168-hours-of-gameplay-on-playstation-3-starting-today <p>Playstation 3 owners who would like to experience Battlefield 4, but have been cautious, will now be able to thanks to a new trial offer on PlayStation Network.</p> <p>With today's PlayStation Store <a href="http://blog.us.playstation.com/2014/09/30/try-battlefield-4-for-free-on-ps3/">update</a>, PlayStation Plus members will be able to experience a trial version of Battlefield 4. All members need to do is find Battlefield 4 in the PlayStation Store and download the full trial version.</p> <p>Players will be able to experience a total of 168 hours with the trial version of Battlefield 4 across both single player and online multiplayer modes. This should be more than enough time to decide whether the game is right for you, especially after the release of today's <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86506/battlefield-4-fall-patch-now-available-across-all-platforms">massive fall update</a>.</p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 14:30:00 PDT Daniel Perez Chariot available today on PlayStation 4; Xbox One tomorrow http://www.shacknews.com/article/86515/chariot-available-today-on-playstation-4-xbox-one-tomorrow http://www.shacknews.com/article/86515/chariot-available-today-on-playstation-4-xbox-one-tomorrow <p>Frima Studio&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/85265/chariot-impressions-101-uses-for-a-rolling-casket">Chariot </a>has finally made the leap to current-gen consoles as the game is available on PlayStation 4 starting today and will be released on Xbox One tomorrow.</p> <p>Chariot stars a princess and her fiance as they guide the King&rsquo;s coffin through the royal catacombs in order to find a sepulchre that&rsquo;s good enough for him to be placed as his final resting place. The game uses physics-based mechanics to progress the coffin through catacombs that include, but are not limited to, swinging, riding, pulling and pushing it to its final destination.</p> <p>Chariot offers co-op gameplay allowing players to control both the princess as well as her fiance, who strangely enough continues to remain nameless.</p> <p>Chariot is expected to land on both Wii U and Steam, although an exact release date has yet been announced.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/8M-mNbs5mR0"></iframe></p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 14:15:00 PDT Daniel Perez Assassin's Creed Identity announced as free-to-play iOS game http://www.shacknews.com/article/86513/assassins-creed-identity-announced-as-free-to-play-ios-game http://www.shacknews.com/article/86513/assassins-creed-identity-announced-as-free-to-play-ios-game <p>Think you&rsquo;ve got your hands full with Assassin&rsquo;s Creed this year with the upcoming release of <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/tag/assassins-creed-unity">Assassin&rsquo;s Creed Unity</a>&nbsp;and <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/85621/assassins-creed-rogue-announced">Assassin&rsquo;s Creed: Rogue</a>? Then prepare for your hands to completely overflow now that Ubisoft has announced Assassin&rsquo;s Creed Identity.</p> <p>Assassin&rsquo;s Creed Identity is a new free-to-play iOS game which includes microtransactions, but it looks as though they&rsquo;re limited to character customizations and various items. Players will be able to choose from three different character classes as they fight through a number of randomly generated missions that are based on 16 different objective types.</p> <p>Identity takes place during the Italian Renaissance across Rome&rsquo;s colosseum, Florence and other iconic Italian locations. Missions won&rsquo;t take long to complete as the game has been tailored around mobile platforms as you control your character through the use of either on-screen virtual analog sticks or tap-to-move commands.</p> <p>Those who have an iOS 7 device, including an iPad 3 or iPhone 5, will be able to play Identity when it&rsquo;s released on iOS. The game is already available in Australia, so we don&rsquo;t expect the wait to be&nbsp;too long.</p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 13:20:00 PDT Daniel Perez Borderlands 2 and Pre-Sequel support SteamOS http://www.shacknews.com/article/86512/borderlands-2-and-pre-sequel-support-steamos http://www.shacknews.com/article/86512/borderlands-2-and-pre-sequel-support-steamos <p>Gearbox and 2K Games just gave Borderlands fans another reason to look forward to Steam Machines. Both Borderlands 2 and the upcoming Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel now support <a href="http://store.steampowered.com/news/14548/" target="_blank">SteamOS</a>. So, if you're in the middle of testing a Steam Machine or the SteamOS beta, or just looking forward to the day Steam Machines officially release, here are two more game to add to the growing list.</p> <p>To celebrate, Borderlands 2 will be 75% off its normal price until October 2nd. But there's no reduced price on the Pre-Sequel,&nbsp;which is set to launch on October 14th.&nbsp;</p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 12:15:00 PDT Steven Wong Windows 10 announced http://www.shacknews.com/article/86511/windows-10-announced http://www.shacknews.com/article/86511/windows-10-announced <p><strong>[Update]:</strong></p> <p>Windows 10&nbsp;features include:</p> <ul> <li>Task view (located on the task bar), allows users to quickly switch between open applications.</li> <li>Multiple desktops, with multiple apps running in different areas.</li> <li>Snap Assist, which lets you manage apps across multiple desktops</li> <li>The Search function is back, and it's both on the Start menu and Task Bar. It will display results from both your computer and the web.</li> <li>The Windows app store is returning, but apps won't have to run at full screen. They will work more like traditional Windows applications, with windows that can be resized and moved. Apps will support a variety of screen sizes, with or without touch functionality.</li> <li>Snap functionality is improved. When you snap an application to the edge of the screen, Windows will make suggestions about how to fill in the empty space with other open apps. Four apps can now be snapped on the same screen.</li> </ul> <p>For a technical overview of what Window 10 might look like, and to register to become a tester through the Insider program, check out the <a href="http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/preview-coming-soon" target="_blank">official site</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>[Original]</strong></p> <p>Today, Microsoft sent out tweet from a promotional event that officially announces that Windows 10 in the works! If the tweet is to be believed, it's the best one yet.</p> <p><a href="http://live.theverge.com/microsoft-windows-9-event-live-blog/" target="_blank">The Verge</a>&nbsp;is still in the process of live blogging the event, but it looks like Windows 10 will be backpedaling a bit by bringing back the traditional start menu - but enhanced with some Windows 8 style live tiles. So, 10 is sort of like a hybridization of 7 and 8. The operating system is meant for a broad selection of devices, but will be better geared toward keyboard and mouse users, while Windows 8 tiles will be reserved for touch-based devices.</p> <p>Windows 10 will support Win8 apps, along with a new collection of universal apps. However, it will have a more familair desktop experience, instead of the divided experience Win8 has.&nbsp;</p> <p>Then there's the mystery of what happened to Windows 9. Well, according to the presenters, "it wouldn't be right to call it Windows 9." Which is an odd explanation, but at least Microsoft skipped calling the new OS Windows One. So, we'll keep you posted as we find out more.</p> <p><em>Developing...</em></p> <p></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Introducing the best one yet. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Windows10?src=hash">#Windows10</a> <a href="http://t.co/LDPSJF6pUH">pic.twitter.com/LDPSJF6pUH</a></p> &mdash; Windows (@Windows) <a href="https://twitter.com/Windows/status/516997877487665152">September 30, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async="" src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 10:38:00 PDT Steven Wong Nintendo 3DS themes releasing in Japan this October http://www.shacknews.com/article/86510/nintendo-3ds-themes-releasing-in-japan-this-october http://www.shacknews.com/article/86510/nintendo-3ds-themes-releasing-in-japan-this-october <p>Nintendo's Wii U received quite the <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86507/nintendo-wii-u-update-finally-delivers-highly-requested-folder-feature">update</a>&nbsp;today as it finally allowed its users to be able better manage their downloaded software through the use of folders. The company is also updating with a new feature on 3DS soon, and we got a first glimpse of it thanks to Nintendo of Japan.</p> <p>As reported by <a href="http://nintendoeverything.com/these-3ds-themes-will-be-available-in-japan-nearly-50/?pid=68875">Nintendo Everything</a>, the next firmware update in Japan will include access to 50 different themes that will offer a breath of fresh digital air to your Nintendo 3DS&rsquo;s Home screen. The themes will feature Nintendo characters as well as various color variants to match whatever style you&rsquo;re going for with your handheld.</p> <p>As far as pricing for the upcoming themes, they range from 100 to 200 yen (which is roughly $0.90 to $1.80).&nbsp;Nintendo still hasn't detailed exactly when we might get those updates here in the States, but it did <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86042/nintendo-announces-holiday-wii-u-and-2ds-bundles">mention</a>&nbsp;an October update incoming with theme and menu options.</p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 10:10:00 PDT Daniel Perez Watch Dogs Bad Blood DLC now available for non-season pass owners http://www.shacknews.com/article/86509/watch-dogs-bad-blood-dlc-now-available-for-non-season-pass-owners http://www.shacknews.com/article/86509/watch-dogs-bad-blood-dlc-now-available-for-non-season-pass-owners <p>A new piece of downloadable content has been released for those who haven't previously purchased Watch Dogs' season pass. That new piece of DLC is <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/86102/watch-dogs-bad-blood-dlc-announced">Bad Blood</a>, which has players assuming the role of T-Bone, giving the title's protagonist, Aiden Pearce a break to hopefully do non-cancerous activities like enjoy a slice of deep-dish pizza.</p> <p>Raymond Kenney, who&rsquo;s better known as T-Bone, will be playable through an all-new story campaign, which picks up directly after the events of Watch Dogs. The campaign has T-Bone attempting to tie up a couple of loose ends in Chicago in order to prevent his past from following him out of the city.</p> <p>Bad Blood will include several new weapons, gadgets, costumes and perks, which includes a drone-car called Eugene, which is one of T-Bone&rsquo;s latest creations, to create complete havoc as it drives around the city. New &ldquo;Street Sweep&rdquo; side-contracts are also being introduced in Bad Blood which task T-Bone with clearing out various gangs from certain territories around Chicago. Players can play these side-missions in either single player or co-op, and promises to offer an &ldquo;almost unlimited amount&rdquo; of content.</p> <p><iframe width="600" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/mnvdpI5JL0U"></iframe></p> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 09:15:00 PDT Daniel Perez
Slashdot: News for Nerds, Stuff that Matters
Robot Arm Will Install New Earth-Facing Cameras On Space Station
UK Government Tax Disc Renewal Website Buckles Under Pressure
Bangladesh Considers Building World's 5th-largest Data Center In Earthquake Zone
35,000 Walrus Come Ashore In Alaska
Laying the Groundwork For Data-Driven Science
Leaked Docs Reveal List of 30 Countries Hacked On Orders of FBI Informant Sabu
Verizon Wireless Caves To FCC Pressure, Says It Won't Throttle 4G Users
Study: Compound Found In Beer Boosts Brain Function
DARPA Technology Could Uncover Counterfeit Microchips
Will Windows 10 Finally Address OS Decay?
Factory IoT Saves Intel $9 Million
The "Man In the Moon" Was Created By Mega Volcano
Boeing Told To Replace Cockpit Screens Affected By Wi-Fi
Obama Administration Argues For Backdoors In Personal Electronics
Japan's Shinkansen Bullet Trains Celebrate 50th Anniversary
Trolan's LJ
Name meaning meme thingie
YIR... no, there's not enough to recap for that
Serenity Quiz
OMG, I made an LJ entry
Fun with LJTalk/Jabber/gaim
Deal with it. (I'm such a card)
It's blasphemy delicious!
Ups and Downs
Oh yeah
Pointless entry to signify life
Communications Update; Part Deux
Communications Update
CCNP... completed
Things you overhear...