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For those who don't know, Russia is experiencing some problems with its currency, the Russian ruble. This has forced Valve to take preventative measures for its digital distribution service, Steam, so that people don't buy super cheap games in Russia and gift them to people.
Valve has now region locked titles from the country according to reports from Engadget and NeoGAF, which is a first for Valve. This stops gamers from exploiting the low Russian currency, acquiring countless games at super cheap prices, and then gifting them to people. Secondly, it stops people using a VPN, and simply buying the games for themselves.
Apple has also performed a similar move, closing down its Russian online store as it was not able to keep up with the constant shift in the price of the ruble.
Love it or hate it, the Call of Duty series still pulls massive numbers. According to a recently issued release, the latest game in this long-standing series has been named the top-selling console game of the year in America.
Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing announced that "to date, 2014 has been a series of number ones for Activision Publishing: Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is the #1 top-selling game of the year, Skylanders is the #1 kids video game franchise of the year, and Destiny is the #1 top-selling new video game franchise of the year", with Hirshberg further commenting that "we are excited about how fans have responded to Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Destiny and Skylanders Trap Team, and have even more great new content in store in 2015."
According to the latest rumors from various sources, Rockstar is working on Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2. The sequel to the popular GTA: San Andreas will be dropping on the PS4 and Xbox One sometime in 2015.
Rockstar reportedly "confirmed" that it was working on Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2 at the PlayStation Experience event recently. According to the rumors, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2 will take place in 1999, some seven years after the events in the original game. CJ will return as the protagonist, which will be voiced by Young Maylay once again.
Many have claimed the news is fake, which is why we're putting a very big 'rumor' stamp on this one. With the news of Online Heists coming to GTA V next year, and GTA V reaching the #pcmasterrace on January 27, 2015, the world of Grand Theft Auto seems to be truly opening up for 2015.
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is now open to the wide world of Android tablets, marking their next step in development. With PC, Mac and iOS tablet versions already on the market, you can now pick yourself up Hearthstone for your Android operated tablet through Google Play or the Amazon Appstore.
Unfortunately this update doesn't include Android OS smartphones or Apple's iPhone, but according to a newly issued press release - they are on the way.
In a very basic analogy, Hearthstone takes the traditional card-gaming franchise (think Pokémon and Magic: The Gathering) and turns it digital, incorporating various features for every skill level, upgrades, levels, online play and more. As the player you're offered a variety of different game modes including ranked matches, deck building, vs. A.I play and 1v1 friend duels.
If you thought the massive 6.7GB patch for Assassin's Creed: Unity was too much, have a little sympathy for Xbox One owners, where some of them are having to download an insane 40GB.
The reason, according to Ubisoft is an "issue with the patch downloading process is replacing the entire game instead of just the parts affected by the patch." Ubisoft is now "working with Microsoft on a solution to reduce the total download to the intended size so that you can get back into the game faster." The developer doesn't have an ETA for when the patch will be patched, but there is a workaround.
Ubisoft recommends uninstalling, and then re-installing AC:U for the Xbox One, which will then reportedly revert back to its correct 6.7GB download.
Capcom has announced that there will be a re-release of the reboot of Devil May Cry, with DmC hitting the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One with 1080p and 60FPS goodness.
DmC: Definitive Edition will feature better visuals and graphical detail than the original release, with all of the DLC that has been released since the original game hit the previous generation consoles. The game will run at 1080p at 60FPS, even with the increased graphical bells and whistles. The re-release includes:
60 fps and 1080p resolution - It looks and feels super smooth to play.
Uprezzed Graphics - Including textures, characters, and cinematics.
Big Bundle of Content - The game includes DmC: Devil May Cry, plus all released DLC: Vergil's Downfall campaign, 3 Dante skins, 3 Dante weapon skins, and the item finder.
New Skins - 2 new character skins. Devil May Cry 1 Dante and Classic Vergil.
Turbo Mode - Turbo Mode returns to the Devil May Cry series, with the game running 20% faster in this mode.
Hardcore Mode - Hardcore mode retains the experience of DmC, but with a throwback to the classic Devil May Cry games in terms of balance. In this mode, which can be toggled on all difficulty levels, the style system has been rebalanced to make ranking up much harder and ranks deteriorate much quicker. In addition, Devil Trigger doesn't launch enemies into the air, parrying takes more skill, and all enemies hand out more damage.
Manual Target Lock - We've seen more requests for this than any other feature! The manual target lock works as closely to the classic Devil May Cry lock on as possible and has fully configurable controls.
Vergil Bloody Palace - Only second to Manual Target Lock in terms of the number of fan requests! This is a new Bloody Palace mode featuring 60 levels and Vergil as the playable character.
Must Style Mode - This is a hardcore modifier on an epic scale that can be played over any difficulty level. Players must be at an S rank or higher to deal any damage to enemies.
Gods Must Die Difficulty Mode - This is DmC Definitive Edition's hardest difficulty mode. It takes DmC's ridiculously hard Dante Must Die mode and adds a touch more punishment: All enemies spawn with Devil Trigger active and no items or health drops can be used.
Rebalanced and Retuned - We've studied fan feedback and made a whole host of tweaks and balance changes. The style system has been rebalanced, as have bosses. Exploits have been fixed in combat and some of Dante's moves rebalanced, such as the Demon Evade. Gameplay tweaks have been made following hardcore player testing; frames have been removed from Kablooey shots, Parry/Evade windows adjusted, and collectibles, keys and doors redistributed.
Integration of Popular Community Mods - DmC Definitive Edition includes community mods such as an optional timer disable for Bloody Palace Mode, a triple dash for Angel Evade, and the ability to hit red and blue enemies with any weapon.
New Cutscene - an added cinematic scene that never made it into the original.
While this isn't a new game, it shows that companies are able to double-dip when it comes to consumers. Release the game and make bundles of money on the Xbox 360 and PS3, and now that the new consoles are here and developers can't reach 1080p at 30FPS let alone 1080p at 60FPS with new gaming engines, re-release your old ones as the "Definitive Editions".
Rockstar is finally teasing Grand Theft Auto V's online heists mode, something it will update for gamers in early 2015. The online heists mode adds four-player missions to the multiplayer side of GTA V, where gamers can plan, prep and pull off a big heist.
The developer has delayed the online heists mode multiple times now, promising that it would be released with the re-release of GTA V on the PS4 and Xbox One last month, but missed that too. Producer and Lead Mission Designer on GTA V, Imran Sarwar, explained that Rockstar delays its content when it's "not at the level we expect of ourselves."
The new mode will launch with "five unique strands" that will feature over 20 missions, and around 20 hours of gameplay. Sarwar added that the heists mode has taken so long to get out because they were much harder to build than the team originally thought. The idea behind the new mode was to create "multi-tiered missions in which players would work cooperatively with their individual strengths - ensuring that each player was important" reports Polygon.
343 Industries has released another patch for Halo: The Master Chief Collection, which promises to fix various issues found within the first-person shooter extravaganza.
The update will improve the "reliability" of matchmaking, while ensuring the split-screen, local multiplayer friends are always-on the same team when playing Halo 2. Microsoft has chimed in, saying that TMCC's new update should also improve the stability across the game's menus, campaign playlists, matchmaking and custom games.
Ubisoft only delayed the patch yesterday, but the company has announced that the forthcoming patch for the still broken Assassin's Creed: Unity weighs in at a huge 6.7GB.
The massive patch is currently being pushed out to Xbox One and PS4 users, while the PC version of the patch is coming soon. Ubisoft has explained the patch on the website for Assassin's Creed as "Part of the team's effort to enhance frame rate for players involves replacing and updating portions of the Paris city map where we are seeing issues. This explains the large size of this title update (6.7 GB). However, since a large portion of the patch replaces existing files the net increase to the game's overall size will be less than 6.7 GB."
So the developer is trying to say that they've replaced large chunks of the map where there are various performance issues, which to me, would mean the game is broken? It's not a patch that fixes various problems, but replacing physical parts of the map to help performance? What the hell happened, Ubisoft? The patch notes are quite large, but you can check them out here.
During a recent interview with Bloomberg, 343 Industries' General Manager Bonnie Ross said that when the studio opened up seven years ago, her goal was to keep Microsoft's Halo franchise ticking along for 30... years. Ross said: "I wanted to make sure we were able to go another three decades."
Ross continued, talking about forming the studio itself, saying it was "the most challenging thing I've ever done." When it came to Halo, the 343 Industries boss said that she wanted the Halo games to have "characters that people can identify with" with both "heroic females and heroic males." Ross wanted to see more females in the games industry, where she added "It's really important for us to get young female talent, because they are the future. It's important to have leadership roles across the industry that people can aspire to."
When it comes to the Halo franchise, the next release will be in 2015 with Halo 5: Guardians. We also have Halo: Nightfall, which is the first live action TV show in the Halo franchise history. The last release, Halo: The Master Chief Collection, has been a broken mess since launch, with subsequent patches getting it into better working order, but it's not perfect yet.