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Remedy Games' Control Content Roadmap Updated

Control is one of the best non-surprising surprises of this year's gaming scene. Remedy's tale of science fiction and paranatural objects and events is joined with a strong narrative, some of the best environments and art direction we've seen this side of 2019, and strong gunplay to boot. That Remedy isn't finished with exploring the world of Control is a given, and now we have some idea of how things will (para)naturally pan out.

First off, a free content drop coming later this year is a Photo Mode and a new game mode, dubbed Expeditions, which will shore-up endgame content for players who want to get engrossed, without end, in the gameplay of Control. There will also be two paid expansions for the game. The Foundation drops in 2020 with new story missions, enemies, and game mechanics, and will explore the nature of The Oldest House. The second Expansion, AWE (Altered World Event in the games' lingo) will explore the Investigations Sector of the Oldest House and the Federal Bureau of Control. This last one is the most intriguing, and could (tinfoil hat galore) mean a mesh of Control and Alan Wake. We know from Control's lore that the events depicted in Alan Wake are considered an Altered World Event in the game, and that they occur in the same universe. Also, the teaser image recreates the legendary Alan Wake cover art. Perhaps we'll find closure to Alan Wake outside the game proper? I'll be here to see, definitely. Finishing off, the Expansion pass will reportedly be set at a $24.99 pricing, which means individual expansions could go for $14.99 each.

Intel Says AMD Did a Great Job (with Ryzen 3000), But Intel CPUs are Still Better

It is no secret that AMD has made a huge success with its long awaited "Zen" CPUs and returned to PC market stronger than ever. Intel however has neglected AMD's presence and only recently admitted what an impact AMD made. At this year's Gamescon, Intel started a new campaign against AMD with a point that Intel's CPUs are still better performers with "real world benchmarks" backing that claim.

"A year ago when we introduced the i9 9900K," says Intel's Troy Severson, "it was dubbed the fastest gaming CPU in the world. And I can honestly say nothing's changed. It's still the fastest gaming CPU in the world. I think you've heard a lot of press from the competition recently, but when we go out and actually do the real-world testing, not the synthetic benchmarks, but doing real-world testing of how these games perform on our platform, we stack the 9900K against the Ryzen 9 3900X. They're running a 12-core part and we're running an eight-core," he adds. "I'll be very honest, very blunt, say, hey, they've done a great job closing the gap, but we still have the highest performing CPUs in the industry for gaming, and we're going to maintain that edge."

Nightmare Reaper is Out Now On Steam Early Access

Blazing Bit Games is proud to release today Episode One of Nightmare Reaper, their new retro first person shooter game, launching in Steam Early Access for Windows. Explore the cursed depths of a nightmare while finding powerful weapons and improving your abilities in this new indie game that breaches the wall between the classics and modern sensibilities.

"We're really proud of how much content and polish we managed to cram into this initial Early Access build of the game. We can't wait to open a dialogue with players and make Episodes 2 and 3 even better." - said Bruno Beaudoin, Founder.

Dungeon Action-RPG 'Underworld Ascendant' Available Now For PlayStation 4, Coming Soon To Xbox One

Underworld Ascendant, the fan-funded title from independent game studio OtherSide Entertainment is now available digitally for PlayStation 4 from the PlayStation Store. The action-RPG, published by 505 Games, will soon be available to Xbox One players via the Xbox Games Store. Both versions are priced at 24.99.

Underworld Ascendant is a fantasy RPG that challenges you to think creatively in an interactive sandbox environment. Players can mix and match dozens of combat, stealth and magic skills to develop their unique style of play and devise clever plans to overcome challenges as they navigate the foreboding Stygian Abyss.

AMD Ryzen 7 2700X 50th Anniversary Edition (Gold Edition) Isn't Just a Fancy Box

Canada Computers put out details of Ryzen 7 2700X 50th Anniversary Edition, officially known as the Ryzen 7 2700X Gold Edition, a commemorative SKU of the 2700X which has been pictured in our older story. At the time we reported that the new SKU commands a roughly $50 premium over the regular 2700X with a fancy new box design and a facsimile of AMD CEO Lisa Su's signature on the processor's IHS. Turns out, you get a whole lot more.

The Ryzen 7 2700X 50th Anniversary Edition includes not just the processor and a Wraith Prism RGB cooling solution, but also two AAA games: Tom Clancy's "The Division 2" Gold Edition, and "World War Z," a black cotton T-shirt with AMD 50 artwork on both sides, and a special case-badge with another signature of the CEO, besides the Ryzen 7 case-badge. The 2 Free Games offer is being extended to the entire Ryzen 2000 AM4 desktop processor family, and several Radeon GPU models, including Radeon VII, RX 500 series, and RX Vega series. The offer is subject to retailer participation.

"Steam Was Killing PC Gaming", Former Valve Dev Says

The EPIC confrontation with Valve has become a hot topic in recent months, as a veritable Exodus of titles have migrated to the greener, 12%-limited cut that the EPIC Games Store takes from publishers who put their games on the EPIC Games Store digital storefront. Mostly, user reception of EPIC's practice of securing mostly one-year timed exclusivity deals for games that would otherwise also be available through Steam has left a sour taste oin gamers' mouths, as it is seen as a forced way for EPIC to fracture the PC gaming space.

However, a former Valve developer has come forth to say that in his view, Valve's 30% cut was already way behind the times, and was actually "killing PC gaming". The train of thought is that Steam itself changed Valve from a software company to what mostly amounts to a service provider, with Steam serving as a veritable digital money printing machine, that stole focus from games to games publishing, due to higher margins and much lower development costs. It's interesting - and logical - to assume that the reason an Half Life 3 never saw the light of day was because Valve had its revenue stream well secured in Steam. Why invest for a game that could be a flop, when you can just take a 30% cut from other developers' efforts?

EPIC Games Shows Off Unreal Engine 4.23 Physics, Destruction System "Chaos" at GDC 2019

Not all news coming from EPIC covers its EPIC Games Store - though according to the relative attention they've been garnering with the constant scooping up of PC timed exclusives, perhaps it should. This piece of news, alas, covers the company's unreal Engine, which has been one of the hallmarks in games development for a while now, being used for a number of disparate games such as the gears of War games, or even a relatively obscure, Xbox 360 exclusive title, Lost Odyssey. At GDC 2019, EPIC showcased version 4.23 of its Unreal Engine, with particular attention to its improved destruction and physics engine, which they've aptly named "Chaos".

Bethesda Confirms E3 Look at DOOM Eternal, Seemingly Teases Starfield - June 9th

Bethesda has confirmed that they will be having their own presentation even before the actual E3 (Entertainments and Electronics Expo) kicks-off. Bethesda's presentation, which will be live on June 9th, will, according to Bethesda, offer an "in-depth look at DOOM Eternal plus much, much more." The company also teases that they want to "be together" with the community this year - likely because of one particular interstellar journey that dwells in such a team - perhaps in the form of Starfield?

Launch Trailer Released for White Paper Games' "The Occupation"

White Paper Games is a small, Manchester-based UK games studio, develpers of Ether One, which currently sits at an 82 Metacritic scopre for PC. The company's latest creation, The Occupation, is being marketed as a real-time thriller, which makes it a clock-watching experience that unflods in real time - as much hours pass in the real life is as many hours pass in the game world. This is sure to bring about some interesting tension to the game, as events unfolding in real time means that every decision is going to be a sort of a snapshot one. Multiple story outcomes result from this branching narrative, with politically driven, mature themes and a complex narrative web of truths, lies and accidents.

Environments are non-linear in nature, taking inspiration from Deus Ex, Dishonored and Prey in the way they're designe to be approached according to gamers' ingenuity. Your job as reporter is to investigate a series of events, a fully interactive briefcase inventory to store anything that might be pertinent to the invetsigation (it remains to be seen if juggling inventory space is a mechanic as well), a high-tech watch with an alarm and timer for remembering important meetings (ah, so if this is like the real world, remember not to arrive late... or maybe if you do arrive late there are other events unfolding?). This seems one of the more interesting, low profile releases in this early 2019, so take a look at the launch trailer and see fi it, as a good British would say, "strikes your fancy". Remember: you decide the narrative.

Metro Exodus Packaging Appears, Steam Logo Simply Hidden Under A Sticker

The drama surrounding Metro Exodus continues unabated. Deep Silver which has ownership over the IP, was the one that decided to pull Metro Exodus from Steam in favor of a 1-year timed exclusivity deal on the Epic Games Store. If you've been following the drama thus far this is all public information. Furthermore, it was speculated that this move was made at the very last minute considering other retailers were originally advertising preorders as being Steam keys for quite some time right up until the news of the digital platform switch broke. Lending more credence to the fact this was a disruptive switch at the last minute is the physical packaging which was not altered for the game's launch and instead has a sticker covering the Steam logo. Truly for such an outstanding game, the mess of its launch should be remembered as a great example of how not to release a game.

CDKOffers Lets You Save Big on Genuine Software and Games

CDKOffers is a new online retailer selling genuine license keys to popular software and games, letting you save over 80% on your software costs for new PC builds. Licenses to popular software such as Windows 10 Pro operating systems and Office 2016 Professional Plus productivity suite are so cheap, that you'd rather buy new keys than hassle porting your old OEM key between motherboards. Globally-valid Windows 10 Pro OEM keys go for as less as USD $14.52, while globally-valid lifetime Office 2016 Professional Plus keys go for $36.87, which is less than half what you'd pay for an annual subscription for Office 365. While you'd on the site, you can also check out their jaw-dropping deals on game keys and in-game credit vouchers, which you can redeem on popular DRM platforms such as Steam, UPlay, Xbox Live, etc.

Buy Windows 10 Pro OEM from CDKOffers | Buy Office 2016 Professional Plus from CDKOffers

One more thing, use coupon code "TP20" for a further 25 percent off on the already discounted price!

Steam Reveals "Best of 2018" Listings With Multiple "Top Sellers" and "Top Played" Duplicates

Steam has releases its statistics for the state of gaming in 2018, where the company reveals which games provided the most engagement, either in sales or players, throughout the year. Top Sellers, Top New Releases, Top Selling VR Titles, Top Early Access Grads, and Most Played Games are the categories across which Steam divided 2018's games, and some of these found themselves on the top spot of more than one category.

Warframe, DOTA 2, Monster Hunter: World, PUBG and CS: GO all find themselves on the Platinum tier of both the Top Sellers and Top Played categories, with more than 100,000 concurrent players at some point in time. The Witcher 3 finds itself in the Gold category of the Top sellers, again, and in the Silver category for Top played. No man's Sky, Stellaris, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance all find themselves in the Gold tier of the Top played game as well, with more than 50,000 concurrent players - No man's Sky, for one, surprises here. The game with one of the worst receptions ever has actually managed to keep relevant for much, much longer than other, much more critically-acclaimed games. Check out the top tiers in the images below.

Discord Store Offers 90% Revenue Share to Developers, Potentially to Counter Epic Games Threat

The launch of the new Epic Games store for the PC has created many an aftershock in the gaming industry, including Steam updating their revenue share model, but the games press and media alike were quick to discuss implications more so for the equally new Discord store that understandably is more in line as far as breaking into the market goes, and impact from competition accordingly. In a series of moves that no doubt pleases game developers and publishers alike, Discord announced that they are going to offer a 90/10 revenue distribution with 90% in favor of developers- an increase over the industry leading "up to 88%" from Epic Games until then.

There is a small catch in that Discord is allowing developers to self-publish the games if they so desire, which in turn is how they will get that 90% revenue share, so it remains to be seen how user friendly that process is. Discord in their blog post made a big point about how it does not cost 30% to distribute games in 2018, a move that will no doubt be examined throughout not only the gaming industry but every single online app distribution platform where a 70/30 split is the current industry standard. As long as this move enables the store to break even and churn out a profit, we would like to see more of this happening to where game developers get more money and do not feel compelled to work ridiculously long hours.

Subnautica Currently Available for Free on Epic Games Store

Epic Games has been pulling a few major moves in the PC gaming market lately, none bigger than creating their own game store and following up with shifting over some of their games from Steam. The company promises a more lucrative profit distribution share to developers (to which Valve had preemptively countered slightly with their own Steam revenue update), and that did help get some game developers and publishers on board, including Supergiant with their new games Hades.

To appease the cautious PC audience thus far, Epic Games has decided to begin with some free games for account holders. As of the time of this post, the excellent aquatic survival game Subnautica is up for grabs. The game was somewhat of a sleeper hit this year, and well worth the free price of admission for anyone interested. The game is available through December 27, after which Epic Games will offer Super Meat Boy for free the following two weeks.

Valeroa Anti-Tamper Tech Tries To Protect Initial Sales, "Cannot Be Cracked Within Reasonable Time"

The launch period of a game is the most important from the sales perspective, and piracy can seriously damage those initial earnings. Several anti-tamper systems have been launched to avoid this, but none seems to be really effective. Denuvo is well know on this front, but its protection has been defeated over and over (and over) again, for example. There's a new anti-tamper technology called Valeroa to fight these issues, and its approach is somewhat different.

As the developers explain, Valeroa "is not a DRM" and it doesn't affect the performance of games because "only a handful of functions are protected by Valeroa". This technique doesn't even require an internet connection, it doesn't read or write the hard drive continuously and "does not limit the number of daily installations or changes of hardware". The most interesting bit comes with its approach to the actual protection, which according to their developers Valeroa "is extremely difficult to crack before and closely after the game release date. The protection becomes a lot easier to crack after a predefined period".

Valve Says Goodbye to Steam Link But Will Continue to Offer Support

Valve seemed to have the ambition to become a hardware company when he launched peripherals like his Steam Link and its Steam Controller. The scope of these products has been limited, and now the company reports that "the supply of physical Steam Link hardware devices is sold out in Europe and almost sold out in the US". Valve has discontinued the product, although the company will continue to offer support for the Steam Link.

The idea was (and still is) really nice: any decent PC or laptop can be converted into a video game and even video content server, allowing the user to enjoy those experiences on much less powerful devices through an Ethernet or a good wireless connection. They started supporting Linux and Windows desktop and laptops, but Steam Link made it possible to stream video games to Android devices (Apple rejected the application for iOS) and Samsung Smart TVs. The product, announced in 2015, therefore says goodbye, although surely those who already have it will be able to continue enjoying it for a long time.

Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion Available For Free From Humble Bundle

Stardock's Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion is currently available for free until November 18th from Humble Bundle. All you need to do is subscribe to the Humble Store Newsletter, at which point you can request a Steam key for what is considered one of the better space-based 4X grand strategy titles available. Although the title was originally released in 2012, Stardock has since further polished the game by optimizing the in-game graphics, removing the 2 GB RAM limit, adding larger worlds, better stability and improved mod support in an update back in April of 2017. All these changes made what I would consider a good game better, having played it quite a bit myself. That said if 4X strategy titles interest you give Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion a shot, after all, it is free so what do you have to lose?

AMD Launches 'Raise the Game Fully Loaded' Bundle, Offers Up To Three Free Games If You Buy a Radeon RX

With AMD's announcement of the new Radeon RX 590 graphics card we've learned something interesting: any user who buys a Radeon RX graphics card or a Radeon RX powered PC will get up to three games for free. "Tom Clancy's The Division 2", "Resident Evil 2" and "Devil May Cry 5", with a retail value of up to $180, will be the titles available for those users.

As mentioned on the press release, "gamers who purchase an AMD Radeon RX Vega or RX 590, or an eligible Radeon RX Vega or RX 590 powered PC, will receive free copies of all three games. Gamers who purchase an AMD Radeon RX 580 or RX 570 graphics card, or an eligible Radeon RX 580 or RX 570 powered PC, can choose two of these games for free".

Sunset Overdrive Likely Headed to the PC Platform as per ESRB Listing

Insomniac Games' Sunset Overdrive first released as an XBOX One exclusive in 2014, and it was generally met with positive feedback from critics and users alike who appreciated the art style and gameplay of the third-person shooter. This was arguably the developer's biggest attempt at an open world action adventure game before they set off working on this year's hit Spiderman game for the Sony PS4 platform. As with just about any Microsoft console title these days, however, this too appears to be coming to the PC sooner than later. The first hint at this came from a Korean Game Ratings and Administration Committee notice earlier in May, and today we got word of the ESRB having a listing for the game as filed for the PC platform.

The game description can be read in the source link, which is NSFW in writing only, and everything points to a game release that does not appear to be nerfed in content thus far. We do not yet know if this is a straight port or more options are added in, and neither do we know whether this comes from the developer (who presumably are also busy handling post-game content for Spiderman) or delegated to someone else. All that can be said at this time is the release of Sunset Overdrive on the PC is now more of a matter of when and at what price point, rather than if at all.

Two Months After Proton Over 2,500 Windows Games Work On Linux Through Steam Play

Proton is a new tool released by Valve Software that has been integrated with Steam Play to make playing Windows games on Linux as simple as hitting the Play button within Steam. Underneath the hood, Proton comprises other popular tools like Wine and DXVK among others that a gamer would otherwise have to install and maintain themselves. This greatly eases the burden for users to switch to Linux without having to learn the underlying systems or losing access to a large part of their library of games. Proton is still in its infancy so support is inconsistent, but regularly improving and the list of supported Windows games is growing each day.

In fact, this project has announced that it has now over 2,500 Windows games (2,663 at the time of writing) that work on Linux with Proton and Steam Play. Beyond those supported "whitelisted" games, there are several others that although not-whitelisted are supported and "play just as well as on Windows". Some examples are "No Man's Sky", "The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt", "Wolfenstein: The New Order" or "The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim". Any user can contribute and report about the titles in his game library thanks to ProtonDB.

Battle Royale Mode Fans, Beware: Battlefield V's Firestorm Won't Be Available Until March 2019

A few weeks ago we learned that Battlefield V would have a battle royale mode called "Firestorm". PUBG and Fornite have made this game mode so popular that several games have tried to take advantage of this feature, and the latest title from EA and DICE won't be an exception. The problem is, that option won't be available at launch, and users will have to wait until March 2019 to enjoy this game feature. The roadmap for additional content has shown how Battlefield V will evolve in the next few months.

This gaming mode has been developed by Criterion Games in partnership with DICE, and 64 players in 16 squads will fight to be the last infantry squad. Before being able to play that mode users will be able to access other DLC such as "The Last Tiger" War Story, "Panzerstorm" (a new tank-focused map) and a new Practice Range mode. Between January and March we will see new content and co-operative modes such as "Combined Arms", and after that "Firestorm" and its Battle Royale mechanics will arrive. General availability for Battlefield V will start on November 20th.

Humble WB Games Classic Bundle Offers Batman Arkham Games and More!

Everyone's favorite charity game bundle store, the Humble Bundle, is back with another good game bundle option. This time it is the WB Games Classic bundle featuring games from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. The games on offer are not necessarily new, but at the asking prices as of the time of this post they more than merit a strong recommendation if you have not played them before or are looking to gift them to friends and family.

For all of $1 USD, you can get Scribblenauts Unlimited, Batman: Arkham Origins, and Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor GOTY edition. This is a no-brainer by itself, but matching the current average of $4.21 also gets you the excellent Bastion, along with Mad Max, Injustice: Gods Among Us Ultimate Edition, and a 10% discount off the recently released Lego The Incredibles. A tougher sale given memories of the game is at the $12 tier which adds Batman: Arkham Knight and the entire season pass for the game, coupled with a $2 Humble Wallet credit for their monthly subscription plan. Check out the link in the source on the post, and let us know if any of these games garner your recommendation as well.

Alienware Looking Into Entering the PC Components Market

Alienware has long been synonymous with custom-built gaming PCs and laptops, with appealing, exclusive designs that you can't find anywhere else and that boutique experience in tailoring your own machines. The company, however, seems to have plans to increase its hold in the PC gaming ecosystem by entering the PC components market, where gaming branding opportunities abound. Alienware already has an established foothold in the pre-built PC space, and it could always increase brand awareness even more not only by including Alienware-branded components on their machines, but by extending its presence onto other manufacturers' gaming PCs and components (read RAM, motherboards, graphics cards, standalone cases...).

Of course, Alienware will have to thread carefully, as already-entrenched manufacturers and suppliers have their heels well dug in the market - their brands already have strong market recognition and there are years and years of R&D poured into their solutions already. Frank Azor, Dell XPS General Manager, todl PC Games N that any foray into unknown markets has to be very well weighed in terms of investment and risk/benefit scenarios, while also adding that Alienware's brand identity wouldn't work with a simple rebrand of other company's solutions.

EA Looking Into Remastering Command & Conquer Series of Videogames

The RTS genre on PC has been left a little out in the cold in recent years; there are still some releases here and there, but the genre that was once the king of PC gaming has taken a dive in popularity. One series that was held in great regard by fans was Command & Conquer, which spanned a multitude of games (including a one-off FPS game in the form of Command & Conquer: Renegade) in both the Red Alert, Generals, and Tiberium universes.

No further work on the series occurred after the release of Command & Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight, designed to be the finale for that particular universe. The much-changed gameplay, which incorporated MOBA-style elements and more mobile armies instead of the usual static base-building, threw fans of the series off (not to mention the story). The series has since been relegated to mobile or browser gaming, but the pressure on EA to deliver another RTS game on the C&C universe has been mounting. The first step, according to EA Games' Jim Vessella, is celebrating the series' 25-year Anniversary, on which work is already going - apparently through remasters, since Vessella himself says that "we [EA] have been exploring some exciting ideas regarding remastering the classic PC games." That's not a bad idea, granted, and makes business sense - but we're still expecting a new installment, EA.

GOG.com Celebrates 10th Anniversary with a Makeover, Freebies and a Site-wide Sale!

It was less than a month ago that we reported on GOG.com's Back to School game sale event, and today we got wind of an even larger one. Indeed, GOG.com (previously Good Old Games) is 10 today, and decided it was as good a time as any to celebrate the anniversary with us. First up, the entire website has received a visual makeover which offers a new color palette and also some user experience improvements as it pertains to the game collections and menus.

More important to you, I presume, is the free game(s) available via a vote. As of now, visitors can vote between Shadow Warrior 2, Superhot, and Firewatch for another ~36 hours as of this posting following which the winning game will be available for free for the next 48 hours after voting ends. There are also many, many other games on sale on the website now, and GOG.com has also added in support for their media partners to curate a list of recommended games including Eurogamer, PC Gamer, and GameSpot- a move that reminds us of Steam's own Curator system for game recommendations. The page also now includes a history section showing the website's humble beginnings to what is today the leading store front for DRM-free games. Go ahead and see if you find something you like today!
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