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Many users who participated in the Battle Field 4 online beta experienced a number of issues ranging from minor bugs to major performance issues. While DICE and EA got a lot of flack for this,the purpose of the beta was to allow EA to test the servers, and discover bugs and glitches that exist across a wide range of systems.
Today EA and DICE have said that the beta provided a wealth of information and that they have already implemented a number a of fixes. Some of the fixes include performance and stability on multi-core systems. Other fixes take care of loading screen freezing issues, keybinding glitches, and even layout changes for console versions of the game.
"CPU usage could sometimes skyrocket for dual, quad and six-core processors," DICE's Vincent Vukovic admitted in a post to the official blog last night. "We identified some of the reasons and released three patches with fixes that went live during the beta, to address the problems. This was a true beta, and as such all the crash reports that were generated during this period will actually help us make a better game.," he added. "PC players may have experienced trouble in the beta getting the game running at a good frame rate. Rest assured that we're using the information we received to optimize the performance for the launch of the game."
Twelve days before Sixense successfully completed their STEM System Kickstarter campaign the company announced that the motion controller system would fully support the Raspberry Pi. I think that everyone knows by now that I am a bonafide Raspberry Pi enthusiast, so this announcement really caught my attention.
Today I got the chance to sit down with Sixense CEO Amir Rubin, and Scott Duensing to chat about the STEM System and how they have made the device compatible with the Raspberry Pi. Scott Duensing, the engineer behind the integration said that making the Sixense SDK compatible with the Raspberry Pi was important because it provided an affordable, highly accurate motion tracking system that developers can use to create amazing things with the Pi.
Ruben told me that the company will release the SDK early on and that anyone with a Raspberry Pi and a Razer Hydra can begin developing for the STEM system. Since the STEM system works off of the Hydra SDK, applications built by independent developers will work with STEM on day one. Ruben and Duensing both want to involve the maker / hacker community in the development of applications for STEM using the Raspberry Pi, and said that they would like feedback from the community as soon as possible.
NVIDIA Editors' Day 2013 - NVIDIA is pushing 4K here at its Editors' Day in Montreal, Canada, and for good reason - it kicks ass. NVIDIA had three demo stations setup with Project CARS, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag and my favorite demo: Star Citizen.
All games were being run at the glorious 4K resolution, with Assassin's Creed IV being played on a gigantic 85-inch 4K TV from LG. The 85-inch display was impressive on its own right, but Star Citizen was absolutely gorgeous at 4K. I stood there for a good half an hour talking with some NVIDIA reps about it, and the amount of passion they had for PC, gaming, 4K and tech is general is great. Star Citizen looks absolutely sublime in 4K and it is really going to be the benchmark of PC gaming when it comes out.
Star Citizen was running on a PC that was powered by two GeForce GTX TITAN GPUs, and it was running at around 20-30FPS most of the time. Chris Roberts, the guy behind Star Citizen, has been working closely with NVIDIA on the game and wants to push PCs to their limits. Bring it on I say!
aIf you thought you had it bad paying under $500 for the PlayStation 4, then you better think of yourself as lucky as Brazil is going to be one of the most expensive countries in the world to purchase the PlayStation 4.
Brazil has some crazy high video game import taxes, where the PS4 will cost $1850. Yes, nearly two thousand dollars! It launches in Brazil on November 29, but if you wanted to save yourself some money, you could purchase the Xbox One which is only going to cost $1016, or so. The Brazil branch of Sony has said that the high cost of the PS4 in Brazil is made up of around 60-70% in import fees and taxes, which represents a hefty $1292 in taxes alone, sheesh.
NVIDIA Editors' Day 2013 - Warner Bros. took the stage at the NVIDIA Editors' Day in Montreal, Canada, where we got a sneak peek into the unreleased Batman: Arkham Origins. Arkham Origins is the next tale in the Batman gaming saga, where it provides gamers with a look at the early, more raw Batman.
NVIDIA technology powers Batman: Arkham Origins, and for someone like me who didn't think the in-game tech from NVIDIA would make a difference, believe me when I say it does, it really does. The video above shows you just how impressive the snow effects in the game are, where it will be thicker in some parts, such as a roof, and thinner in other parts. As Batman walks through it, it will leave footprints and as he fights in the game, it will dynamically shift the snow around.
It was a truly impressive demo to check out, and it is now firmly placed at a must-have for me when it launches.
Xbox 360 users with slow internet connections may want to schedule their first Battlefield 4 round a bit later than they had previously thought. Today EA released a blog post that suggested that players will need to download an extra 12GB of content to their hard drive in order to get the best gameplay experience possible.
Those who do not care about quality, can simply stick to the 2GB install to play file, but EA says that for the optimum experience, users will need to install an additional 6.6GB file for multiplayer, and another 5.8GB file for singleplayer. This will ensure that customers have the highest resolution textures, maps, and file system updates. This will most likely apply to PS3 players too, but PC gamers, need not worry as you will install all the high-resolution files from the beginning anyway.
One of the most anticipated games of this year, Watch Dogs, has been delayed until spring of 2014. Ubisoft announced in the last 24 hours that its open-world title will not be launching this year, citing that it wanted more development time.
Ubisoft said "Our ambition from the start with Watch Dogs has been to deliver something that embodies what we wanted to see in the next-generation of gaming. It is with this in mind that we've made the tough decision to delay the release until spring 2014. We know a lot of you are probably wondering: Why now? We struggled with whether we would delay the game. But from the beginning, we have adopted the attitude that we will not compromise on quality. As we got closer to release, as all the pieces of the puzzle were falling into place in our last push before completion, it became clear to us that we needed to take the extra time to polish and fine tune each detail so we can deliver a truly memorable and exceptional experience."
It's disappointing that Watch Dogs has been delayed, but let's hope that the increased development time gives us an even better game. It might give Ubisoft more time with the next-gen titles to squeeze some more performance and increased graphics, which will filter over to the PC so we all benefit.
Rovio's Angry Birds franchise is arguably one of the most popular video game series of all time, and a newly released video is showing that Angry Birds is not slowing down anytime soon. Today Rovio released a new teaser video for the upcoming Angry Birds Go installment into the series.
This time, the birds are not being launched through space, or into buildings made of stone and glass. In this new installment, bird and pig alike don their racing gear and hit the track for a fun-filled, and very Mario Kart racing experience. The video shows that the game is based around downhill go-kart racing in which you can use power ups to knock your opponents out of the race. Rovio says that we should see the all new Angry Birds Go launch later this year on December 11th.
Today Jeri Ellsworth released a new video on her YouTube channel that gave us a look into what has been going on in her world since she was let go from Valve. Jeri says she has been working on a project that was started about two years ago when she was recruited by Valve to develop an all new way to play video games using augmented reality and virtual reality.
To summarize a long story, Jeri stumbled across a neat effect using special image projection glasses and a sheet of retro reflective material. When combined, the two pieces of technology created a beautiful holographic gaming experience that does not cause headaches from eye strain. Jeri said that she had a hard time selling the new discovery to Valve as they did not see how this could fit into the types of games they were developing.
Jeri teamed up with a developer at Valve named Rick Johnson who began developing games for the system in his spare time after hours at Valve. Jeri continued working on the headset and managed to shrink it down drastically and at the same time, she developed a "magic wand" that was used to control characters on the gaming surface. The gaming system became popular and Jeri says that Valve employees would stop by her office at the end of the day and spend hours playing games on the system.
During a recent interview, DICE's Director, Lars Gustavsson alluded to the company officially supporting Linux with a port of the new Frostbite Engine 3. He said that all it will take is for a single killer game (such as Battlefield 4) to be ported to the free OS and the platform would become as popular for gaming as Windows.
Gustavsson says that DICE wants to create the "Halo" of Linux, referencing the Bungie title that made the Xbox a success overnight. He said that the company will port Frostbite 3 over to Linux and that means that we could see games like Battlefield 4, and other big name titles coming to Linux machines everywhere. A big factor in this will be Valve's SteamOS which has support from AMD and NVIDIA and is needed to get the high-end graphics support needed on Linux.