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TweakTown News Posts - Page 8

Switch consoles have built-in NES emulator

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 5 days, 7 hours ago

Now that the Nintendo Switch's OS kernel has been cracked, hackers are finding interesting goodies hidden onto the system's files including a built-in NES emulator and a ROM file for NES Golf.

 

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According to a homebrewers who have hacked the Nintendo Switch, every single console-handheld hybrid comes with a NES emulator baked in, presumably as a foundation for the console's paid subscription service. This Switch Online service, which costs $20 annually and is slated to release in 2018, will give users access to a pool of classic NES games with added online play.

 

Hackers have also found that every Switch features a copy of NES Golf that runs on the built-in emulator, complete with local two-player and JoyCon support. This game is undoubtedly a test run for the Switch Online's service and likely doesn't indicate traditional VirtualConsole support for the Switch, much to the dismay of many fans--including myself.

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New Final Fantasy may take cues from Breath of the Wild

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 5 days, 9 hours ago

If Final Fantasy XV Hajime Tabata reprises his role for the next chapter in the series, the next Final Fantasy game could take big cues from Nintendo's mangum opus Breath of the Wild.

 

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Zelda: Breath of the Wild has had a tremendous affect on the games industry. Gamers everywhere are in awe of the title's living, breathing open world, and developers have taken notice too: in fact, Final Fantasy XV's game director is quite impressed with the game. Mr. Tabata says that his next game will emulate Breath of the Wild's open world scope and experience--but it's not necessarily going to be the next mainline Final Fantasy game.

 

"It's hard to say at this point if the entire game is going to be based on an open world," Mr. Tabata said in a recent interview with Gamespot at PAX West. "But I would say that the overall experience that users get from playing in a massive area, that overall game experience is something that we're going make sure is in the next project as well."

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Final Fantasy XV has sold 6.5 million units

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 5 days, 11 hours ago

Final Fantasy XV has now sold 6.5 million copies worldwide, game director Hajime Tabata revealed.

 

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Square Enix's recent efforts to make Final Fantasy XV the center of a new universe-within-an-IP business model have apparently paid off. The game, which sits at the core of a galaxy of ports, re-releases, and transmedia products, has transformed significantly since its launch in 2016. The Japanese publisher has updated the action RPG with a smattering of free new content updates to expand the game that dramatically change it from its launch state, coupled with a stream of premium paid content to boot. The game is even getting its own MMO-like online mode.

 

This new business model has been quite fruitful for Square Enix, and the publisher hopes to reap even more success by bringing Final Fantasy XV to all platforms, including mobiles and PC. According to game director Hajime Tabata, the landmark RPG has sold 6.5 million units to date, up 500,000 units from the original figure announced in January.

 

"From a business standpoint, we've achieved over 6.5 million units, and the fact that we're still going to be putting out content till the launch of the Windows Edition--and then we have the Pocket Edition--this project has been very successful for us," Mr. Tabata said in an interview with Gamespot. "But from a personal level, and from a dev team standpoint, what really resonates with us is the fan feedback we got from the day one release. A lot of the major criticisms was that they felt the story was lacking in certain aspects. So for us, we did our best to give back and supplement those areas where people felt it was lacking."

 

Due to these updates, ports, and a significant roadmap of content, I recently proclaimed that Final Fantasy XV is the new Skyrim--and I stand by that 100%.

Battleborn updates to cease as devs move to new project

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 5 days, 14 hours ago

After the upcoming fall update, Battleborn's development team will no longer add new content to the shooter and shift their focus to a brand new 2K Games project.

 

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Although Battleborn's PVP has transitioned towards a free-to-play model and premium microtransactions following a disastrous flop for the 2K Games label, the game will no longer be updated with significant content updates and is essentially being put on hiatus similar to Mass Effect: Andromeda. The Battleborn team is shifting their focus on Gearbox's new "highly anticipated project" which is very likely to be Borderlands 3.

 

"As of this week, there will be no more Battleplans and there is currently no planned content after the Fall Update," Creative Director Randy Varnell said in a forum post. Mr. Varnell says the game will stay online, but it won't receive any major story or content updates, similar to Andromeda's fate.

 

"If you've been paying attention to recent news from the Gearbox Panel at PAX West, you'll have heard that many folks at Gearbox are working on a highly anticipated project. Although I'm sad my time on Battleborn is coming to a close, I'm happy to announce that I will play a significant role on this highly anticipated but unannounced game, and I'm sure you'll be hearing some from me again in the future regarding Gearbox games."

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AMD Ryzen Mobile APU leak: 90% faster than previous-gen

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: 5 days, 16 hours ago

AMD will later this year rock the notebook world just as much as it did the desktop PC world with its new Ryzen Mobile APUs, something the company has teased for the last few months.

 

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AMD's upcoming Ryzen Mobile APUs will be the first Zen-based APUs released by the company, which will rock Vega-based GPU technology and much longer battery life than previous APUs from AMD. We're told to expect over 50% more CPU performance, 40% more GPU performance, with 50% less power... pretty damn good numbers.

 

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Fast forward to now, and we have the first benchmark leaks of the upcoming Raven Ridge-based Ryzen 5 2500U which scores 9723 in Geekbench 4.1.1's multi-core test, and 3625 on the single-threaded side. If we compare that against the previous-gen A12-9800B and its multi-core score of just 5115, we can see just how much of an improvement Ryzen Mobile is going to be over AMD's previous-gen APUs.

 

  • Ryzen 5 2500U (multi-core test) - 9723
  • A12-9800B (multi-core test) - 5115
  • Ryzen 5 2500U (single-core test) - 3625
  • A12-9800B (single-core test) - 2315

 

AMD will be releasing their new Raven Ridge-based Ryzen Mobile APUs later this year, and expect us to put them through their paces in the usual benchmarks and games.

Continue reading 'AMD Ryzen Mobile APU leak: 90% faster than previous-gen' (full post)

The Pirate Bay caught mining Monero coins on users' CPUs

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Cryptocurrency & Mining | Posted: 5 days, 17 hours ago

While there's a global GPU shortage because of cryptocurrency mining with Ethereum and other alt-coins, users of The Pirate Bay have found JavaScript code in the website that "borrows" your CPU to mine Monero.

 

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Not every TPB user is noticing the Monero coins being mined, but when you feel your PC running sluggishly, check Task Manager and see if your CPU usage is maxed out. But it's not something nefarious, as the website has spoken with TorrentFreak and said it was testing the Monero mining feature as a new way to bring in revenue... eventually replacing ads.

 

You can block the miner for now, by modifying your browser settings, or ad-blocker add-ons for your web browser. It's an interesting way to drive revenue without ads, making me wonder if this is the future of ads on the web.

Continue reading 'The Pirate Bay caught mining Monero coins on users' CPUs' (full post)

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 16C/32T is really EPYC: 32C/64T

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: 5 days, 20 hours ago

A few weeks ago there was a story that surfaced that AMD had intentionally disabled two entire CPU dies on their new Ryzen Threadripper CPUs, but AMD denied this and the world kept spinning.

 

 

Well, weeks later and we're back with the same overclocker delidding AMD's champion, the Ryzen Threadripper 1950X, with der8auer pulling it apart to find out that it really is an EPYC server CPU underneath. This means that the single CPU dies on Threadripper are Ryzen 7 1800X, with 8C/16T - but times this by four and we have a huge 32C/64T.

 

We saw this in those early photos of the four CPU dies, but they were said to be dummy/non-working CPU dies. It might not make sense, but AMD would be making their EPYC server CPUs and then whatever yields can't handle the full 4 x 8C/16T gets knocked down to Threadripper 1950X by easily disabling the bugged-out CPU dies.

 

Voila: Ryzen Threadripper 1950X with 16C/32T, down from the mammoth 32C/64T that EPYC delivers.

Continue reading 'AMD Ryzen Threadripper 16C/32T is really EPYC: 32C/64T' (full post)

Forza 7's 50GB day one update is optional for disc users

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 5 days, 22 hours ago

Turn10 Studios confirms that Forza 7 will clock in at a huge 95GB on Xbox One, but that huge install size is split between the game disc and a 50GB download.

 

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Microsoft's first-party games are often juggernaut-sized leviathans that quickly eat up your internal data--Halo 5, Gears of War, Forza, you name it--and Turn10's racing opus Forza 7 is no different. Xbox One owners can look forward to almost 100GB of data being taken up by the game: the racer takes up 95GB of space, but the Blu-ray disc only holds 45GB and users will have to download the remaining 50GB on their own time. Luckily, that 50GB update is purely optional (for game disc owners anyway) and isn't required to play the game, but you'll need to download it if you want the definitive Forza 7 experience. Xbox One X owners can expect yet another big update for the 4K assets and performance tweaks.

 

"Ever since we announced Forza 7, we've called this our biggest game, and the numbers bear it out: more than 700 cars at launch, 32 of the world's greatest tracks (our largest lineup ever), a massive career in the Forza Driver's Cup, and of course a huge list of ever-changing multiplayer and competitive modes that will keep players busy no matter their skill level or driving preferences," Turn10 said on its official blog.

 

"This is the largest game we've ever released in terms of sheer footprint size as well. The Xbox One game will be approximately 95 GB at launch. Just about 45 GB of that contained on the Blu-ray disc. The remainder will be available to download for free on September 29."

Continue reading 'Forza 7's 50GB day one update is optional for disc users' (full post)

HP's new Z8 workstation: 56C/112T, 3TB RAM, 1700W PSU

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: 1 week ago

HP has just unveiled its new and improved dual-processor Z8 workstation PCs, with the new machines boasting two Intel Skylake-SP Xeon CPUs with 56C/112T, up to 3TB of DDR4 RAM, mega loads of storage, and 9 x PCIe 3.0 slots, oh and 10GbE networking.

 

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HP's new Z8 workstations will be some of the best off-the-shelf (can I even say that with everything online these days) PCs you can buy, which is a dying breed with so much moving into the cloud and into supercomputers, and even the growing power of quantum computing with companies like D-Wave.

 

Inside of the new HP Z8 workstation PC are 2 x Intel Xeon Platinum 8180 processors with 28C/56T of CPU power in total, both rocking 205W TDP each. This means 410W of heat needs to be moved from the CPUs alone, so HP has put some engineering efforts into the Z8 workstation so that the company didn't need to rely on liquid cooling.

Continue reading 'HP's new Z8 workstation: 56C/112T, 3TB RAM, 1700W PSU' (full post)

Destiny 2 smashes original Destiny's engagement record

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

Destiny 2's masterfully-crafted--and super addicting--engagement strategy is paying off big time.

 

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Activision today announced that Destiny 2 has surpassed the original game's player engagement and concurrent player count since the sequel launched on September 6. "We are blown away that we've had eight days in a row in Destiny 2 where we've seen more than one-million concurrent players grace our worlds," said Bungie CEO Pete Parsons.

 

"With franchise pre-order records broken, and record day-one performance on PlayStation Store, it's exciting to see engagement at the highest ever week-one concurrency for the franchise. Destiny 2 is off to a strong start as the #1 console gaming launch week of the year to date," said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision.

 

Bungie confirmed that Destiny 2 had 1.2 million concurrent players on Sunday, September 10, illustrating how powerful the game's engagement-powering hooks actually are. With a number of repeatable events and content, a hugely addicting and rewarding RNG-based loot scheme, and a clan system that aims to pull lapsed players back into the mix, Destiny 2 has multiple hooks that continually pull players into the game and keep them active. Activision is one of the king's of engagement monetization, and it's this kind of content that's responsible for the company's billions in quarterly and yearly revenues.

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