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Free Game Alert: The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind Available for Free Today Only

Attention to all of you who enjoy your games to be free of charge (and don't we all?). Bethesda has announced that The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind is available for free download, today only. Yes, the game is an old one, but a free game is certainly worth the admission price, whether you've already played it and have your trusty, physical CD edition laying around (it's good for a frisbee nowadays), or just want to get your hands on something Elder Scrolls that you've never touched before.

Like any Bethesda game, there are a number of mods that you can apply here to fix bugs (ah trusty old Bethesda), improve mechanics, game systems, gameplay, and graphics, so you can always dive in a little deeper if that is your wish. You'll have to sign-up for a Bethesda account, and enter the code TES25TH-MORROWIND for the price to become a big, fat, submissive zero.

Impaired Creativity: Bethesda to Still Use Creation Engine for The Elder Scrolls VI, Starfield

Bethesda Softworks has been betting hard on its Creation Engine to take them through multiple installments in some of the biggest AAA game releases players usually see, in the form of The Elder Scrolls and Fallout. And even as the company has announced their intention to explore another new universe in the still mysterious Starfield, it seems the company only knows of one way to do so: their Creation engine. The Creation engine is in itself a heavily upgraded and revised version of Bethesda's own Gamebryo engine, which was deployed in The Elder Scrolls III - Morrowind... back in 2002. It has since been heavily upgraded, but it's looking slightly long in the tooth, at least from a visual perspective.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 416.16 WHQL Drivers

NVIDIA released its first GeForce software suite since Windows 10 October 2018 went official. The new GeForce 416.16 WHQL drivers add full support for the new operating system, including WDDM 2.5, and DirectX Ray-Tracing (DXR), which are essential for NVIDIA RTX to work. The drivers also add SLI profiles for a large number of games, including "Battlefield V," "Basingstroke," "Divinity: Original Sin II," "Immortal: Unchained," "Jurassic World Evolution," "Phoenix Point," and "Seven: The Days Long Gone." 3DVision profiles are added for "The Elder Scrolls: Online."

A small number of bugs are also fixed with this release. "Pascal" GPUs running "Quake HD remix" no longer experience black square glitches. Temporal AA sharp drops in performance with GeForce GTX 1060 running "Rainbow 6: Siege" has been fixed. Driver errors on TITAN Xp when waking up from S4 sleep have been fixed. Lastly, an issue found with "Turing" GPUs not exposing Netflix 4K mode to displays connected over USB-C, has been fixed. Grab the driver from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 416.16 WHQL

The change-log follows.

Skyrim VR Now Available on SteamVR for $59.99

We're pleased to announce that Bethesda Game Studios' critically-acclaimed The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is expanding its frontier and is now available on PC through SteamVR. The release includes the complete legendary open-world core game as well as its official add-ons - Dawnguard, Hearthfire and Dragonborn - all in one package for PC users.

After a successful launch onto PlayStation VR, PC players can now experience the genre-defining epic fantasy masterpiece on SteamVR on all supported devices. Skyrim VR reimagines battling cursed Draugr, exploring rugged mountainsides and hunting fearsome, ancient dragons to be more immersive than ever before. Aided by made-for-VR control schemes allowing players to move, hack and slash at foes, and cast powerful magic with real-life movements, adventurers now have the control to explore the world of Skyrim any way they choose.

AMD Announces Long Term Strategic Relationship with Bethesda

Building on the success made with Doom's implementation of Vulkan, and the overall through-the-roof performance levels for that title considering its graphical quality, AMD today announced a long term strategic partnership with Bethesda, a major game publisher ("The Elder Scrolls" series, "Doom," and "Dishonored," etc.) This, according to AMD's Raja Koduri, will see Bethesda optimize its entire library of games (at least the recent ones), for AMD Ryzen 8-core processors, and the upcoming Radeon "Vega" GPU architecture. The first product of this new partnership will be the 2017 release of "Prey," the hotly anticipated survival-horror game.

TechPowerUp and MSI Announce 'Fight Fire with Fire' Giveaway

We at TechPowerUp share one thing in common with the folks at MSI Gaming, our love for The Elder Scrolls Online. To celebrate the season's hottest MMO, we're coming together in bringing you the "Fight Fire with Fire" Giveaway. Just answer two questions about what you plan to do with an Intel X99 Haswell-E HEDT build, if you ever build one, and you could stand a chance to win a ravishing MSI X99S Gaming 7 motherboard, that makes up one of three parts you'll need to complete such a build - a high-performance motherboard that's armed to the teeth with every feature a serious PC gamer could ever need. To participate, simply "like" our Facebook page (if you haven't already), fill in your details (or have Facebook do it for you), and answer two questions to which there are no right answers. The winner will be randomly picked. The contest is open between today and the 29th of October, 2014. Good Hunting!

Fore information, and to participate, visit this page.

AMD Catalyst 12.6 Beta and AMD Catalyst Feature Preview for Windows 8 Available

AMD just released the AMD Catalyst 12.6 Beta. With the release of the Catalyst 12.6 Beta driver, AMD would also like to announce that we are moving away from our Monthly Catalyst release plan. Our goal is to ensure that every Catalyst release delivers a substantial benefit to our end users; as we have today with the release of the Catalyst 12.6a Beta. We will still continue with the Catalyst naming convention; Catalyst: Year.Month., You just won't see a new driver every single month. We are confident that this will only benefit the end user; you'll only need to upgrade to a new Catalyst driver, when it makes sense.

We would also like announce the introduction of our new AMD Issue Reporting Form. We made a number of improvements to the older Catalyst Crew Feedback form, making it more comprehensive, ensuring we get the best feedback possible. Feedback is very important in every product company's life, especially in our fast paced environment. This is not just a check-box for us - we take these reports very seriously. We will review every report posted here and investigate every issue encountered. Please use this form whenever you encounter something worth mentioning.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 12.6 BETA | AMD Catalyst Windows 8 Feature Preview Driver

Bethesda Softworks Announces The Elder Scrolls Online

Bethesda Softworks, a ZeniMax Media company, today announced The Elder Scrolls Online, an MMO in development at ZeniMax Online Studios. The Elder Scrolls Online will be the first Elder Scrolls game to allow gamers to explore the legendary Elder Scrolls world with others.

The Elder Scrolls Online is being developed for PC and Mac under the leadership of industry veteran Matt Firor, who has spent the last two decades working in online game development. Details about the game are revealed in an exclusive cover story in Game Informer's June issue, which ships to subscribers and newsstands this month.

Portal 2 Bags GDC Honors, Skyrim GOTY, Battlefield 3 Beats Crysis 2 at Technology

Portal 2 and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim won big at the Game Developers Choice. Bethesda's smash-hit title bagged the coveted "Game of the Year" (GOTY) title, while Portal 2 bagged three top honors, winning "Best Narrative", "Best Game Design", and "Best Audio".

The year 2011 also saw the raising of the technology bar with two new game engines, CryEngine 3 from Crytek, and Frostbite 2 from EA-DICE. The two were implemented in flagship titles, Crysis 2 and Battlefield 3, respectively; both of which were published by EA. In the end, Battlefield 3 won "Best Technology". "Best Visual Arts", however, went to Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception.

A list of top honors follows.

Christmas Special: The PC Technology of 2011

Welcome to the TechPowerUp 2011 PC technology Christmas special. We hope that you will enjoy reading it while tucking into your turkey, Christmas presents and a little too much wine... In this article, we go through the technology of 2011 that has had the most significance, the most impact and was generally the most talked about. It's not necessarily the best tech of 2011 which is the most significant though, since lemons can be just as significant as the ground-breakers in how they fail to deliver - and the backlash that goes with it.

January: Intel Sandy Bridge i5 & i7

Released on January 9th, the new Intel Core i5 & i7 processors were based on Intel's second generation Core architecture built on a 32 nm production process (HEXUS review). They included an IGP (Integrated Graphics Processor) physically on the same piece of silicon along with HyperThreading. These new dual and quad core processors soundly beat all previous generations of Intel processors in terms of processing performance, heat, power use, features and left AMD in the dust. Therefore, Intel badly needed some competition from AMD and unless you have been living under a rock, you will know how that turned out in October with the launch of Bulldozer. Sandy Bridge was a sound win and is generally considered to be the only architecture worth considering at this point. The i5-2500K is currently at the sweet spot of price/performance. It comes at a stock speed of 3.3 GHz, but typically overclocks to an amazing 4.5 - 5 GHz with a decent air cooler and without too much difficulty in getting there. Models in the budget i3 range were released at various times later. See this Wikipedia article for details.

AMD Posts Catalyst 11.11c Performance Driver

AMD published the third performance driver based on Catalyst 11.11, the Catalyst 11.11c. The driver addresses some glaring issues ahead of the upcoming Catalyst WHQL monthly update. The new performance driver addresses the following issue:

Elder Scrolls Skyrim
  • Delivers AMD CrossfireX performance scaling for the AMD Radeon HD 5000 Series
Apart from the applied changes, the new Catalyst 11.11c includes all the changes brought about by previous Catalyst 11.11 performance drivers.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.11c Performance Driver for Windows 7 and Vista | Windows XP

NVIDIA GeForce 290.36 Beta Drivers Released

The latest beta drivers and the first in the 290 series have been released by NVIDIA today, supporting all graphics cards since the venerable 6-series. Their main new feature are official support for enabling ambient occlusion settings in the control panel separately for specific games and enabling NVIDIA Surround on the new X79 SLI-certified motherboards. Ambient occlusion (AO) is settable for uber-popular games The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. So, what does AO do? We'll let Andrew Burns of NVIDIA explain:
If you're unfamiliar with Ambient Occlusion, it is most easily described as a way to make in-game shadowing more realistic, and therefore better.
What he doesn't say of course, is how it kills your frame rate, especially on lower end hardware. Anyway, there's all the usual goodies in this release: 3D Vision game profiles for games such as MW3, Diablo 3 & LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 (yes really). There's a HD audio update and nine fixes too, including one for random flickering of the Windows boot logo as it's loading or fading away and a fix for the mouse cursor flickering and shaking in games such as Crysis 2 & Deus Ex when SLI is enabled when using 3DTV Play. The NVIDIA product release page is here and they have a snazzy-looking driver selector here. The release notes follow.

AMD Outs Second Catalyst Performance Driver In A Week

AMD rolled out its second Catalyst performance driver update in a week, with the Catalyst 11.11b. It follows Catalyst 11.11a, which was released earlier this week. A performance driver update is what AMD used to call "Hotfixes", they are updates for recently-released WHQL-signed drivers, featuring some performance improvements fresh from the Catalyst developer team. In includes all the changes 11.11a brings to the table, plus the ones listed below:
Elder Scrolls Skyrim
  • New in Catalyst 11.11b: Delivers AMD CrossFire performance scaling for AMD Radeon HD 6000 Series
    o AMD Radeon HD 5000 CrossFire support will be supported soon in an updated driver
Assassin's Creed: Revelations
  • New in Catalyst 11.11b: Delivers AMD CrossFire performance scaling
DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.11b Performance Driver for Windows 7 and Vista | Windows XP

AMD Rolls Out Catalyst 11.11a Performance Driver

AMD released its latest "performance driver" for Radeon graphics cards, the Catalyst 11.11a. With this release, AMD is using the term "performance driver" to refer to performance-enhancing Hotfix updates it launches between its scheduled monthly WHQL-signed updates. Catalyst 11.11a fixes some outstanding game-related bugs and improves performance and resolves driver-related bugs for a variety of recently-released titles such as Batman: Arkham City, Rage, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, and Battlefield 3. The rest of the driver is based on Catalyst 11.11.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.11a Performance Driver for Windows 7 or Vista | Windows XP

A list of changes follows.

AMD 11.11 WHQL Catalyst driver CAP 2 Now Available

AMD has now released the CrossFireX Catalyst Application Profiles 2 for their latest 11.11 WHQL drivers. The improvements apply to just two games:
New profiles added to this release:

- Saints Row 3: Resolves stuttering seen when playing in CrossFireX mode. Also provides Single GPU and CrossFireX performance improvements when running in lower resolution configurations
- Gothic 4 Arcania: Fall of Setarrif: Improves CrossFire performance
There's nothing yet for hit game The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim in this release, unfortunately. CAP 2 can be downloaded here.

The Next Title in Bethesda's Elder Scrolls Series, Should Arrive in 2010

According to GameIndustry.biz, Paul Oughton, Bethesda's publishing executive has been briefly discussing the companies plans in general, as well as indicating that the next Elder Scrolls title should be with us sometime in 2010. It was also interesting to note that despite Nintendo's success with it's home and handheld consoles, Bethesda had no interest in releasing their games on other platforms.
At the moment we've got Fallout 3 for this year and potentially there's a new Elder Scrolls title in 2010... [and] at the moment we're not that interested in the Wii. We're going to stick to PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. We'll continue to pursue three or four titles a year and go for big titles.
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