Items tagged with Gaming

As popular as it is, the practice of "remastering" old games is still a contentious topic. Some folks are positively gleeful seeing old favorites get a new coat of polish and quality-of-life features. Others are directly dismissive of old game remakes, citing new always-online requirements and the viability of the original release, maintained through the ages by faithful fans. Yet another faction is simply puzzled at the choice to spend time on rehashed releases (rather than all-new adventures). Whatever your take on the issue, Diablo II Resurrected has been a popular re-release largely owing to fans' deep affection for the original game. Unfortunately, more than two weeks on from release, some... Read more...
This past summer, China implemented a strict time limit on how long people under 18 years old are allowed to play video games, in an effort to curb gaming addiction. Technically, they're only allowed three hours per week. Since the rules went into effect, however, determined players have found clever ways around the time limit, and China intends to crack down on those methods. China represents a massive market for video games. The time China's youth has spent playing games has led to concerns about their mental and physical health, according to a previous report, and there are even clinics that mesh therapy and military drills for people deemed to have a gaming disorder. These and other factors... Read more...
Good Old Games (GOG) is generally a decent place to score games that aren't marred by annoying digital rights management, aka DRM, schemes. However, when the platform released IO Interactive’s 2016 shooter “Hitman,” users were angry to find a form of DRM still entangled with the title, which restricted offline play. Since then, GOG appears to have backed down and apologized to its community, which was initially built around DRM-free gaming. In late September, GOG announced “an astounding 70% discount” for Hitman – Game of The Year Edition, among other Hitman series deals. To many, this seemed too good to pass up, considering the popularity of the titles... Read more...
Certain events can make you feel old, like your kids growing up and getting married, or seeing a formerly young and sprightly actor appear gray and weathered in their newest flick. Life just relentlessly marches on. I bring this up because today brought on of those moments for me today—a reminder that the original Xbox is about to turn 20 freaking years old! In celebration of Xbox's 20th anniversary, Microsoft is releasing some special edition peripherals that are a throwback of sorts. What you see above is the 20th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox Wireless Controller.  Microsoft opted for a translucent black finish and silver guts, for a kind of mix of retro and modern. "The nostalgic,... Read more...
It took a minute, as well as a handful of leaks and rumors, but Rockstar Games has confirmed plans to release remastered versions of Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. All three will be packaged up into Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition (try saying that one time fast), and released to multiple platforms, including PC and various consoles. All three are fan favorites in the GTA universe, with sprawling open-world settings for the player to explore and do things they wouldn't (or shouldn't) do in real life. The reason for the release now (well, soon) is because GTA III will be celebrating its 20th anniversary later this month.... Read more...
Bungie has been hinting for quite some time that the Forsaken campaign will soon be "vaulted." Their Destiny Content Vault (DCV) provides them with "breathing room" to make improvements to the game and add in new content. We now have confirmation that the much-loved campaign will be entering into the DCV. The Destiny 2 Forsaken campaign and other destinations and activities will no longer be available starting February 22nd, 2022. The Forsaken campaign, Tangled Shore destination, and Year 4 seasonal content, such as the Presage and Harbinger Exotic missions, will be placed into the DCV once The Witch Queen expansion is available. The Proving Grounds strike will continue to be available in Year... Read more...
Do you value your life? Then don't open up the Steam Deck. Do you care about the structural integrity of your shiny new handheld console? Then don't open up the Steam Deck. Do you want to keep your handheld's warranty intact? Then don't open up the Steam Deck (opening it doesn't void the warranty, but if you damage it, you're on your own). These are all the warnings Valve offers up in teardown video explaining how you can get at the guts of the Steam Deck, and why you shouldn't. Here's one more warning—watching (and more specifically, listening to) this teardown video will make you want to throw your tools in the garbage and roll yourself up in bubble wrap. Okay, not really. But how many... Read more...
Do you remember what it was like to build a gaming PC from the ground up...with a discrete graphics card, no less? Yeah, neither do I, quite frankly. But we can all be reminded of the satisfaction that comes from constructing a rig with the immersive PC Building Simulator, an addictive sim that has you repairing and building systems without the headache of a GPU shortage. And it's free right now! "Build your very own PC empire, from simple diagnosis and repairs to bespoke, boutique creations that would be the envy of any enthusiast. With an ever-expanding marketplace full of real-world components you can finally stop dreaming of that ultimate PC and get out there, build it and see how it benchmarks... Read more...
The raid on this fort is reminiscent of infiltration missions in Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag A whole new crop of blockbuster games are lining up for a big holiday shopping season. Ubisoft didn't really intend for that to be the case for Far Cry 6, but early this year the COVID-19 pandemic had other plans. The game had been hit by some delays, but at the end of May the company set a date: October 7, 2021. Finally, the latest Far Cry title has arrived and the open-world first-person shooter is ready for players to take down its repressive government and maybe learn a little something along the way.  Far Cry 6 Is A Political Statement What responsibility do games, or game developers,... Read more...
Are you a PC gamer frustrated with the lack of graphics cards? Maybe you're looking forward to buying a brand-new pre-built PC with Windows 11 soon (it launches this Tuesday, after all). Well, this news may give you pause. The new operating system brings an apparently intense focus on system security, and as is common for technologies that center on security, it could have an adverse effect on performance. For pre-built systems, Windows 11 will ship with Virtualization-Based Security (VBS) enabled by default, and according to a new report from PC Gamer, that security feature can absolutely tank gaming performance. The publication was first alerted to the issue by the organization formerly known... Read more...
If you have aspirations of making it big as a streamer, more power to you—it's certainly a fun way to make a living. Streaming can be expensive, though, presenting a challenge right off the bat. To help with that end of things, Razer on Thursday announced an expansion of its streaming hardware catalog to include a couple of entry-level additions, the Kiyo X webcam (top left) and Ripsaw X capture card (top right). In a note sent to us by Razer, the company said this effort is aimed at "lowering the barrier of entry for customers looking for premium feature sets." Neither device is the cheapest in its respective category (webcams and USB capture cards), but neither one will break the bank,... Read more...
The Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S have been on the market for almost a year now, they just have not been the least bit easy to obtain for the bulk of that time. Not unless you're willing to pay way above MSRP from a marketplace seller or on eBay. Yeah, no thanks. Is there an end in sight to supply coming up way short of demand? Maybe, but according to Microsoft's Phil Spencer, don't expect it to happen in the next few months, and for at least part of next year as well. That is disappointing for sure, though not unexpected. The pandemic and other factors have directly and indirectly put a strain on manufacturing, making it difficult to produce enough components to satisfy the demand for cutting... Read more...
In a recent Twitter post, Nintendo sought to make one thing abundantly clear to investors and the public large—it has no current plans to launch a Switch console beyond the upcoming Switch OLED refresh, and that definitely includes an oft-rumored 4K model with upgraded hardware. It is just not in the cards, if Nintendo is to be believed. For the most part, the Switch is the same console now as it was when it first launched in 2017, when we reviewed the original Switch. There have been some minor alterations since then, including a refresh in 2019 that improved battery life, and a Switch Lite that is smaller and lighter (without detachable controllers).  But most of the core hardware... Read more...
We’ve seen some rather crazy devices hit Kickstarter over the years, but this latest entry from TinyCircuits perhaps takes the cake. The company this week unveiled Thumby, which looks like a Nintendo Game Boy that was hit by a shrink ray. As its name implies, Thumby is roughly the size of your thumb yet remains a fully functional game console. Thumby measures just 1.2” x 0.7” x 0.3” and features a 72x30 monochrome OLED display. Powering the console is a Raspberry Pi RP2040 SoC paired with 2MB of internal storage and a tiny 40 mAh battery. Despite its size, the battery is good enough for a relatively palatable 2 hours of gameplay. Although we can’t imagine staring... Read more...
For people who were among the first to preorder Valve's Steam Deck console, they are going to have a joyous holiday season, especially if a batch of early benchmarks are any indication. The handheld gaming PC releases in December, at which point reliable performance metrics will arrive as well. As we wait, a user who obtained a Steam Deck development has been putting it through its paces. Bear in mind that the development kit might not paint a full picture of performance and capabilities of the actual retail units that will ship out in a few months. The core hardware is set in stone, but software optimizations and other tweaks can affect what the user experience will end up being, as with any... Read more...
Many games have seen launch dates pushed back during the COVID-19 pandemic and Far Cry 6 was no different. After missing the initial release date of February 18th, Far Cry 6 is finally slated to release on October 7th. It will be made available on console for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series S/X. As for PC, you will be able to find it on Epic Games Store and the Ubisoft Store, as well as Google Stadia and Amazon Luna. In a recent interview, Ubisoft 3D Team Lead Programmer Stephanie Brenham discusses real-time ray tracing, AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR), and more now that the game is ready for release. One of the more notable things in the interview is that ray tracing... Read more...
Call of Duty: Vanguard has not even released to the public yet, and cheaters are already infesting the game. Several participants of the cross-platform multiplayer mode's open beta took to social media to post clips and complaints of players using obvious cheats to gain an unfair advantage, and ruin fun for players on the receiving end of such nonsense. Activision is in the midst of its third open beta. The first one was an early access beta that ran from September 10-13 for PlayStation players who preordered the game, followed by a second beta round that ran from September 16-17 for Xbox and PC (Battle.net) players, as well as PlayStation gamers. The current beta period, which began on September... Read more...
Seagate is rumored to be readying a smaller 512GB Storage Expansion Card for the Xbox Series X|S, so owners of Microsoft's latest-generation game consoles can give themselves more wiggle room at a lower price than the current 1TB option. And like the 1TB model, this would give gamers the full speed capabilities of the Xbox Series X|S and its Velocity Architecture. As it stands, the Xbox Series X offers up around 802GB of usable storage from its internal NVMe solid state drive (the rest is reserved for the operating system and various system files). On the Xbox Series S, the amount of usable storage is around 364GB. Some of the bigger games (Call of Duty, anyone?) can quickly chew into the available... Read more...
Players who are anticipating the launch of Battlefield 2042 will have to wait a little bit longer, following news of a delay. In a message posted to Twitter, Dice Studio GM Oskar Gabrielson broke the news, saying the new release date is November 19, 2021. That amounts to exactly four weeks from the game's original October 22 launch date. Publisher Electronic Arts reiterated the news in a press release, saying the delay will not have an effect on its net bookings guidance for fiscal year 2022, that it provided back on August 4, 2021. Or put another way, it still anticipates selling a boatload of copies. And that's probably a fair assessment, given that three years have elapsed since Battlefield... Read more...
It's only been out a bazillion years (small exaggeration), but Nintendo has finally got around to implementing Bluetooth audio support on its Switch consoles, a feature that has been absent since the original model launched back in 2017 (hard to believe it's been almost half a decade already!). The ability to pair Bluetooth audio devices arrives by way of the latest system update. The Switch has always featured Bluetooth capabilities, but up to now was only used to connect the Joy-Con controllers. Pairing a set of Bluetooth earbuds or headphones has been frustratingly unavailable, at least natively—manufacturers have offered Bluetooth adapters for those who wanted to wirelessly pair a headset,... Read more...
Sorry folks, but your Xbox Series S is obsolete! I'm kidding (put the pitchforks and tomatoes down), but what might not be a joke is that a refreshed model could already be in the works. That shouldn't stop you from buying one if you are in the market for an Xbox Series S, though, because it is said the refreshed model with slightly higher end hardware wouldn't debut for another year. Microsoft has not actually announced any console refreshes, so information in that regard comes from Leak Valley and the Rumor Highway. It is certainly plausible, though, and I'd say even likely, considering that console refreshes are now a normal part of the lifecycle. We saw it with the Xbox One X/S and the PlayStation... Read more...
After conducting a series of tests and close examinations, EVGA believes it has discovered the reason why some of its GeForce RTX 3090 graphics cards were giving up the ghost when running Amazon's New World MMORPG. What it boils down to, if EVGA's analysis is correct, is sloppy soldering on certain areas that would not necessarily be visible to the naked eye. For those who were affected, this had been a perplexing and frustrating issue. And to exacerbate the situation, not only is the GeForce RTX 3090 an expensive graphics card, it is also in short supply like practically every other GPU. Getting your hands on one means being very lucky with your timing (Best Buy had a couple of recent inventory... Read more...
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