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Gaming Posts - Page 122

Steam Box prototypes to be finished in 3-4 months, says Newell

Those looking forward to the coming Valve Steam Box, you won't have to wait too much longer. Speaking with the BBC, Gabe Newell has said that they should be giving out some prototype Steam Boxes within three to four months. "We're working with partners trying to nail down how fast we can make it," Newell said.

 

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We'll be giving out some prototypes to customers to gauge their reactions, I guess, in the next three to four months...

 

There are noise issues and heat issues and being able to [deal with] that while still offering a powerful enough gaming experience is the challenge in building it.

 

As an additional note, he added that a final controller design hasn't been decided. Valve is looking into the possibility of using sensors to measure the gamer's body metrics, such as heart rate, to judge engagement.

 

If you think of a game like Left For Dead - which was trying to put you into a sort of horror movie - if you don't change the experience of what the player is actually feeling then it stops being a horror game. So you need to actually be able to directly measure how aroused the player is - what their heart rate is, things like that - in order to offer them a new experience each time they play.

SimCity having launch day jitters despite betas designed to negate these problems

Though SimCity launched just in North America, the game is already experiencing issues. EA unlocked the game in their digital distribution client Origin, after which reports of problems started coming in. Reports of download failures, connection issues, and the game not unlocking have all been sent in by users.

 

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We've started to get used to launch day jitters and problems with games that rely heavily on a server. For instance, we saw similar problems with Diablo III with users being unable to log in due to the server being down and the always-on DRM.

 

Users are having similar troubles, sometimes having to wait in excess of 30 minutes to get into the game, even when attempting to play on a private server. Further users are having troubles even downloading the game. After a small Origin download, the actual game downloads the required files, which is taking hours.

 

It's not clear why pre-loading of the game wasn't allowed. It likely would have saved at least some of the problems from happening. Even with launch day problems, SimCity is shaping up to be a good game.

Steam says that two percent of its users are now on Linux

Every month Steam releases a hardware survey that provides a look into the corner of the PC gaming industry that Steam occupies. February's numbers look fairly nominal until you notice that two percent of Steam users are now running Linux.

 

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Two percent may seem like a small number, but when you consider that the Steam Linux client has only been available officially since the beginning of February, the "adoption" rate is actually higher than Windows 8. On top of that, when you factor in that there are roughly 100 games ported over to Linux on Steam and none of them include major titles like Borderlands 2, Far Cry 3, Skyrim, or even the GTA series, two percent is pretty large.

 

The survey also reveals that 1080p is the most used resolution, Direct X 11 holds 58% market share, and NVIDIA dominates the GPU stats with 52% market share. Finally Windows 7 64-bit still reigns king with 8GB of RAM being the norm.

Continue reading 'Steam says that two percent of its users are now on Linux' (full post)

Battlefield 3 End Game is here for PS3 - Capture the flag returns, and Motorcycles abound

For months now Battlefield 3 players have awaited the final expansion pack in the series and today (at least for PS3 owners) the wait is over. Battlefield 3 End Game is here and man does it pack one hell of a punch!

 

Returning to the series is Capture the Flag mode, but with a twist. Players now have dirt bikes at their disposal to help aid in capturing and returning the enemies base. There are also 21 new dog tags, 10 new assignments, 4 new massive maps, and something I am going to spend a lot of time in, Air Superiority mode.

 

 

Three new vehicles including the fast and agile dirt bikes will be seen in the DLC along with a new "Dropship" that provides support to ground troops with vehicle drop capabilities. Battlefield 3 End Game released this morning on the PlayStation 3 and will be coming to Xbox 360 and PC gamers on the 12th of this month.

Continue reading 'Battlefield 3 End Game is here for PS3 - Capture the flag returns, and Motorcycles abound' (full post)

Crysis 3 on the Wii U 'had to die'; port was running and close to launch

Due to a "lack of business support between Nintendo and EA," Crytek was forced to pull the plug on the Crysis 3 port for Wii U. EA is the company that owns the publishing rights to the Crysis series of games. Without those rights, Crytek is unable to publish the game without EA.

 

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In an interview with VentureBeat, Crytek's Cevat Yerli said:

 

We did have Crysis 3 running on the Wii U. We were very close to launching it. But there was a lack of business support between Nintendo and EA on that. Since we as a company couldn't launch on the Wii U ourselves - we don't have a publishing license - Crysis 3 on Wii U had to die.

 

The issue apparently stems from the fact EA would like to get the Origin digital distribution platform onto the Nintendo Wii U. I'm not so convinced that the Crysis 3 Wii U port would have even been any good. Controls would probably have been pretty bad, though the Wii U hardware is reportedly able to run the game.

Shenmue creator is thinking of bringing Shenmue 3 to Kickstarter for funding

Yu Suzuki, the writer, director and creator of the popular Shenmue series is thinking of getting into Kickstarter where he would crowdfund the development of Shenmue 3.

 

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The news is coming from a recent tweet by French journalist and presenter, Sebastien-Abdelhamid. Abdelhamid interviewed the Shenmue creator at the Monaco Anime Game Show, which is a video game, manga and anime convention that runs March 2-3. We should expect some news on this in the coming days!

Is this Valve's Steam Box? Could it feature an upgradeable GPU?

The game developer behind Call of Duty have some interesting photos to share with the world, where they show off a small PC with their Infinity Ward logo on the side. To most people this might not seem like much, but are we seeing the first proper builds of Valve's Steam Box?

 

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Infinity Ward is a huge developer, and securing them on-board with an exclusive of any kind is sure to sell millions of Steam Box's at launch. One interesting thing is that they've put an iPhone next to it for a size reference, so we can see the purported Steam Box wouldn't even be that big, what is of more interest is the device underneath it.

 

This looks like an external hard drive, but I'm dreaming of an upgradeable GPU. Valve could really turn the entire console and gaming industries on their heads by offering us a console with an upgradeable GPU. Anything under 150W could be cooled quite efficiently, and would give consumers a great upgrade path, too. What are your thoughts on these leaked shots?

Research firm says just 29% of core gamers will buy next-gen consoles at launch

According to research firm NPD Group, just 29% of core gamers will purchase next-gen consoles at launch. A 29% adoption rate shouldn't be shocking because both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 have huge user bases. These consumers purchase things often, new games, in-game content, DLC packs and more on a regular basis.

 

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Investing another $500-plus on next-gen consoles, a Full HD-capable display or TV if they didn't already - in order to fully experience next-gen consoles, and a slew of new games is all daunting to a well-established 'core gamer'.

 

The figures come from NDP Group polling over 6,000 people in a survey, with just 887 of qualifying for the company's definition of a 'core gamer'. Their definition of a core gamer is someone who is over 9 years old and plays games for five or more hours each week on the Xbox 360, PS3, PC or Mac.

 

These 'core gamers' must play at least one game that slots into any of the following genres: play action, adventure, fighting, flight, massively multi-player, racing, real time strategy, role-playing, shooter or sports game.

Mac gets League of Legends open beta

Mac has finally gotten access to the online multiplayer game League of Legends. The game was originally released for Windows back in 2009 and has grown in popularity ever since. If you already play League of Legends, you can download the open beta for Mac, or you can sign up for an account on their website.

 

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Going native on Mac has been a big goal for us, and we're really excited to offer the same experience across both platforms. And just in case you're still skeptical, we managed to wrangle an endorsement from this business-savvy professional. We're confident you all know that this man games as he pleases!

 

The Mac client does everything that the PC client does, meaning you'll get all future features, bug fixes and new content on the same schedule as PC players, but on your native OS. The Cross-Platform team will also continue working diligently to smash any Mac bugs that surface during the open beta.

 

League of Legends is popular among gamers and eSports enthusiasts. There are numerous events streamed live, each viewed by thousands of people. Prizes for the events can run up into the millions, so it's somewhat interesting that it has taken so long to get it onto the Mac platform.

Ouya consoles will ship to Kickstarter backers starting March 28

The creators behind the Ouya console will begin shipping the consoles to Kickstarter backers on March 28. That's right, just one more month until you will be able to get your hands onto your very own Ouya console. The consoles are currently being produced with full launch still set for June.

 

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OUYAs will begin shipping to Kickstarter backers on March 28. That's right. Parts are in the factory and assembly lines are buzzing. We'll gradually ramp up production as we make sure things are working. (Our full launch is still set for June, which is when OUYA will be available in stores!)

 

Meanwhile, tens of thousands of you will receive your OUYA, and you'll get to start playing right away. You will also get to watch OUYA evolve over the coming weeks and months. We'll continue to add new features, refine our user experience, and bring on more games. As always, we appreciate your feedback (and apply it), so keep it coming.

 

Keep a lookout in your inbox for an email from us. It will have your tracking number and estimated delivery date. Might take a few weeks to get to everyone. We have a lot of OUYAs to ship!

 

Ouya is the console that everyone is looking forward to. It blew through its $950k funding goal by raising nearly $8.6m. It will be available in stores for around $100 with extra controllers coming in at $50. They expect to release new versions every year, likely featuring new hardware.

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