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Shack News
Shacknews Recent Articles http://www.shacknews.com/rss?recent_articles=1 en-us Opinion: Titanfall 2 is Still Being Virtually Ignored by Publisher EA http://www.shacknews.com/article/100417/opinion-titanfall-2-is-still-being-virtually-ignored-by-publisher-ea http://www.shacknews.com/article/100417/opinion-titanfall-2-is-still-being-virtually-ignored-by-publisher-ea <p>Electronic Arts doesn't seem to have much faith in its Titanfall franchise any more, which is a shame for developer Respawn Entertainment. While several games got prominent play at <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100400/everything-electronic-arts-announced-at-ea-play-for-e3-2017">EA Play's 2017 press conference</a>, not a word was uttered about the popular mech game, despite the fact that <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100415/titanfall-2s-the-war-games-dlc-coming-next-week">a new free DLC pack was on the horizon</a>&nbsp;and more are planned. It's as if EA sees Titanfall franchise as a titanic bust and is deliberately treating&nbsp;the critically acclaimed sequel as robota&nbsp;non grata.</p> <p>Respawn appeared to be doing everything right for the sequel, at least in the eyes of fans. It was&nbsp;now <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/93104/titanfall-2-will-feature-a-single-player-campaign-that-resembles-historic-conflicts">offering a single-player campaign</a>&nbsp;and the game was&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/88565/titanfall-2-confirmed-by-respawn-ceo-will-be-multiplatform">coming to PS4 as well this time</a>&nbsp;instead of just PC and Xbox One. It was even revealed that <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/95228/e3-2016-titanfall-2-post-launch-maps-and-game-modes-will-be-free">all content after launch would be free</a>. Things looked promising.</p> <p>Right before E3 and EA Play last year, however, EA took the wraps off Battlefield 1, the next installment in EA's pride-and-joy franchise. It gave it <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/94539/battlefield-1-introduces-world-war-i-warfare-on-october-21">an October 21 launch date</a>, which fit comfortably into the holiday season. But the first inkling of a problem showed up a few weeks later when EA's Blake Jorgensen made an off-the-cuff comment at a financial seminar that Titanfall 2 would be <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/94979/ea-to-release-battlefield-1-titanfall-2-within-three-weeks-of-one-another">coming within three weeks of Battlefield 1</a>.</p> <p>The problem was immediately apparent to some: it isn't good for competing franchises with similar audiences to come so close to each other, much less from the same publisher. Consumers with limited incomes have to decide which to buy, and pitting them against each other ran the risk of making one a loser of that bout.</p> <p>EA's intentions seemed to become even more&nbsp;clear when the <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/95188/e3-2016-titanfall-2-official-trailer-drops-october-release-date">official launch date was revealed to be October 28</a>, one week after BF1. To make matters worse, that date was sandwiched in between BF1 and Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Activision's futuristic take on its flagship franchise, which had previously been pegged to <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/94414/call-of-duty-infinite-warfare-officially-announced--finally">a November 4 launch</a>. The reasoning was never made clear as to why EA execs chose that date, but Titanfall 2 producer Drew McCoy said the date "<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97474/titanfall-2s-launch-date-locked-in-a-long-time-ago">was locked in a long time ago and there was no changing it</a>."</p> <p>Despite the back-to-back releases, EA publicly felt that <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/96142/ea-is-setting-conservative-sales-estimates-for-battlefield-1">Titanfall 2 would do strong sales</a>&nbsp;because of its multiplatform offerings, but by the time the game launched, <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97462/analyst-predicts-substantially-disappointing-sales-for-titanfall-2">analysts were already predicting poor sales</a>. "We suspect EA believed that by launching two shooters next to Call of Duty it could put a large dent in its biggest competitor, but instead EA appears to have wound up shooting its own foot off," one analyst said.</p> <p>Less than three weeks after launch, and ahead of Black Friday sales, Walmart had already dropped the price of the game in half to $30. But EA continued to be unwavering in its launch timing decision. "It's not about the first day of sales or the first week of sales, it's about the long run," <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97706/ea-is-focused-on-long-term-sales-for-titanfall-2-its-not-about-first-day-or-first-week-sales">Jorgensen said at a business conference</a>.</p> <p>Respawn CEO Vince Zampella tried to put a brave face on the situation, saying the game was a "huge success" with critics. Indeed, it <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97364/titanfall-2-review-the-iron-giant">scored well in its Shacknews review</a>&nbsp;and made <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/98235/game-of-the-year-2016-8-tie-titanfall-2">our list of top 10 games for 2016</a>. He said Respawn wanted to tell more of the story behind the game, but wouldn't commit to a Titanfall 3, turning instead to the EA rep in the room for some reinforcement. "What we've said is we're committed to the franchise," EA rep Devin Bennett said at the time. "Whatever the f*ck that means." Zampella responded in obvious frustration.</p> <p>Despite any public push from EA, Respawn has continued to push out its free updates as promised. Since launch, the game has had five pieces of DLC, and currently has more than a million active players each month. And more DLC is still in the works for the coming months. In all, more than 20 million players have tried Titanfall or Titanfall 2. With numbers like that, you would expect EA blast out a press release. Instead, those numbers were confined to <a href="https://www.ea.com/games/titanfall/titanfall-2/news/frontier-news-network-16" target="_blank">the latest update in the Titanfall 2 blog</a>.</p> <p>EA Play 2017 showed off a host of games, many of them core to EA's library. However, when NBA Live 2018 gets show time, but Titanfall 2 DLC coming within two weeks can't even get a mention, it raises the question of whether the Titanfall brand has any future with the publisher. We reached out to EA to ask why Titanfall 2 was not part of the EA Play presentation, but have yet to get an official response.</p> <p>Jorgensen has said in the past that Titanfall and Respawn are part of EA's plans for "<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97504/ea-teases-more-titanfall-games-and-the-possibility-of-hd-remasters-during-todays-earnings-report">many years to come</a>," but as the old saying goes, actions speak louder than words. Right now EA's actions are all lip service and very little actual support for the popular developer and franchise.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 14:30:00 PDT John Keefer Overwatch Cuts Rate of Loot Box Duplicates and Adjusts Highlight Feature http://www.shacknews.com/article/100416/overwatch-cuts-rate-of-loot-box-duplicates-and-adjusts-highlight-feature http://www.shacknews.com/article/100416/overwatch-cuts-rate-of-loot-box-duplicates-and-adjusts-highlight-feature <p>Overwatch is getting an overhaul to its loot box system, which should make fans who hated duplicates happy. The better news is that the changes are already live on the Public Test Realm.</p> <p>Under the new system, the dev team has "drastically" reduced the chance of duplicates appearing when players open new loot boxes. Players who were annoyed with the duplicates sold them for credits, and Blizzard acknowledged that, saying it would also increase the amount of credits players get in the loot boxes. "<span>On average, players should be earning just as many credits, if not slightly more, from loot boxes than they did prior to these changes," the team <a href="https://playoverwatch.com/en-us/blog/20861969" target="_blank">said in the PTR blog update</a>.</span></p> <p><span>Also getting an overhaul is the highlights system in the game. Now, the game will continually generate highlights based on recent play, saving up to five (dubbed as Today's Top 5) and keeping them for a 24-hour period or until the game is patched. Players will also be able to generate their own clips of up to 12 seconds, with capture ability now getting its own key bind. These are saved under a new "Recently Captured" tab in the menu. Up to 36 clips can be saved and will remain until a patch comes out. Finally, Top5 and Recently Captured footage can be exported to to the designated media library on console or a specified directory on PC.&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span>The PTR also has a bunch of bug fixes and general changes, which are detailed at the bottom of the blog post.</span></p> <p><span>Game Director Jeff Kaplan took the time to record a developer update explaining the changes, which can be seen below.</span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OkYJlPMdWNA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:20:00 PDT John Keefer Titanfall 2's The War Games DLC Coming Next Week http://www.shacknews.com/article/100415/titanfall-2s-the-war-games-dlc-coming-next-week http://www.shacknews.com/article/100415/titanfall-2s-the-war-games-dlc-coming-next-week <p>Developer Respawn&nbsp;continues to faithfully plug away on Titanfall 2 for its fans, despite little promotional assistance&nbsp;from publisher EA. A new free DLC pack called The War Games is coming on June 27, bringing some new maps, a third weapon slot for pilots, a new execution and a new mode called Free Agents.</p> <p>The maps took most of the focus in <a href="https://www.ea.com/games/titanfall/titanfall-2/news/frontier-news-network-16" target="_blank">a new update on the Respawn blog</a>&nbsp;about the DLC. The first map is entitled appropriately War Games, offering "<span>civilian shops, tall buildings for window-to-window fighting, and city streets for Titan combat from the Battle of Angel City, and the large, open tank garage facilities for hand-to-hand Pilot combat from the Battle of Airbase Sierra." The idea for the map is a VR simulator that Frontier pilots&nbsp;use to train for life-like recreations.</span></p> <p><span>A new Live Fire map is also being introduced called Traffic, which is a "<span>weathered test site where pilot positioning is pitted against mobility across two busy thoroughfares. Dense cover makes every corner a threat, with room for snipers to hide in the back fields."</span></span></p> <p><span>Also coming: </span></p> <ul> <li>Shadow Boxing [Holo Pilot] Execution:&nbsp;Get 20 pilot kills while a holopilot ability is active (Both normal holopilot and boost ability holopilot nova count.) Does not retroactively count.</li> <li>Third Weapon Slot for Pilots: Equip a primary, secondary, and anti-titan weapon.</li> <li>Titan Brawl added to permanent list of game modes. Titan damage will be displayed instead of assists.</li> <li>New Featured Mode called Free Agents</li> </ul> <p><span>&nbsp;Respawn promises more details as the DLC gets closer to launch, along with a full list of balance changes and bug fixes.&nbsp;</span></p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:50:00 PDT John Keefer Steam's Summer Sale Has Officially Begun http://www.shacknews.com/article/100413/steams-summer-sale-has-officially-begun http://www.shacknews.com/article/100413/steams-summer-sale-has-officially-begun <p><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100397/steam-summer-sale-launch-possibly-outed-by-paypal">As suspected</a>, the Steam Summer Sale has officially kicked off today, and as expected the site has some incredible deals on popular games. Also, as expected, the site is getting hammered, so you might have to refresh several times to see the deals.</p> <p>Some of the better ones we've seen:</p> <ul> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/579950/Marvels_Guardians_of_the_Galaxy_The_Telltale_Series/?snr=1_4_4__617">Guardians of the Galaxy</a>&nbsp;- Telltale Games - $16.74 (33% off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/252950/Rocket_League/">Rocket League</a>&nbsp;- Psyonix - $11.99 (40% off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/360430/Mafia_III/?snr=1_4_4__617">South Park: The Stick of Truth</a> - Ubisoft - $7.49 (75% off)</li> <li><a href="style=" text-decoration:="" underline="" color="#5e98a5" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" http:="" store="" steampowered="" com="" app="" 272270="" torment_tides_of_numenera="">Torment: Tides of Numenera</a>&nbsp;- InXile - $22.49 (50% off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/292730/">Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare</a>&nbsp;- Electronic Arts - $29.99 (50% off) - More deals on the various deluxe editions</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/360430/Mafia_III/?snr=1_4_4__617">Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor</a> - Warner Bros. Interactive - $3.99 (80% off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/360430/Mafia_III/?snr=1_4_4__617">Mafia 3</a> - 2K Games - $14.99 (63%&nbsp;off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://store.steampowered.com/app/322500/SUPERHOT/?snr=1_4_4__617">Superhot</a> - $14.99 (40% off)</li> <li><a style="text-decoration: underline;" 5e98a5="" onmouseover="this.style.color='black';" onmouseout="this.style.color='#5e98a5'" href="http://cdn.akamai.steamstatic.com/steam/apps/257850/capsule_616x353.jpg?t=1490721064"><span>Hyper Light Drifter</span></a> - $9.99 (50% off)</li> </ul> <p>There are plenty more sales for today, so head over and <a href="http://store.steampowered.com/" target="_blank">see what specials</a>&nbsp;you can get on your favorite games.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:05:00 PDT John Keefer Hearthstone Changes to Nix Duplicate Legendaries http://www.shacknews.com/article/100414/hearthstone-changes-to-nix-duplicate-legendaries http://www.shacknews.com/article/100414/hearthstone-changes-to-nix-duplicate-legendaries <p><em>[<strong>Update:</strong> Blizzard responded to inquiries regarding drop rates. The story below has been edited to reflect this information.]</em></p> <p>Hearthstone's next expansion will come alongside some pretty major changes to how random drops work when you open packs. The biggest change comes to Legendary cards, which will no longer give duplicates in random pack openings.&nbsp;</p> <p>According to the announcement, Legendary drops&nbsp;will always select one that you don't already own. The move is meant to make it more exciting to open a Legendary, without worrying about hitting one that you've already opened or crafted. That means that once you've crafted a Legendary card, you&nbsp;won't open it an hour later and feeling that sting of regret. You'll also always get a Legendary within your first 10 packs when a new set comes out.&nbsp;</p> <p>Additionally, drops won't give you any more copies of a card than you can actually use in a deck. The card limit is two for Common, Rare, and Epic cards, so you won't open three or more of any of those card types in a single pack. This happened rarely, but it was always frustrating for players to open more cards than they have any actual use for.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/RPUG0lJpqJY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Blizzard confirmed to Shacknews that the drop rates for Legendaries won't change once the update goes into effect. The announcement doesn't address what happens for the rare player who already owns all the Legendary cards in a given set, but presumably they would start to get duplicates again for the dust.</p> <p>The timing for the next expansion is still under wraps, but Blizzard plans to release three full-size expansions per year now. The community has expressed some unease with that frequency, since it means investing in packs that much more often to keep up. Being a little more generous with Legendary cards may address that complaint.</p> <p>As a promotion, Blizzard is giving extra cards for Journey to Un'Goro pack bundles this week. You can get an extra two, five, 12, and 18 packs from the standard bundle prices. Keep in mind this is before the new changes have gone into effect, so you can still open duplicate Legendaries and three cards in a pack.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:00:00 PDT Steve Watts Oculus Connect 4 Confirmed For Mid-October http://www.shacknews.com/article/100412/oculus-connect-4-confirmed-for-mid-october http://www.shacknews.com/article/100412/oculus-connect-4-confirmed-for-mid-october <p>Facebook's F8 developer conference in April had <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99722/facebook-launches-beta-of-vr-social-platform">a heavy emphasis on VR</a>. That's logical given its ownership of Oculus. But that did raise the question about the status of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97105/oculus-connect-3-recap-of-announcements">Oculus's own developer conference</a>&nbsp;and if one would happen this year. It appears the answer is yes.</p> <p>Oculus Connect 4 <a href="https://www.oculusconnect.com/" target="_blank">has been confirmed</a>&nbsp;for October 11-12 at the San Jose Convention Center, although not much else is known at this time. The event is a day shorter than last year, and Oculus did not have an E3 presence this year, so it is likely we will get a few splashy announcements at the event. If you want a heads up on what is coming to the show, you can sign up for updates at the official site.</p> <p>Last year, we got&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97101/oculus-touch-controller-preorders-open-october-10">news about Oculus Touch</a>, as well as <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97103/oculus-connect-new-footage-for-oculus-touch-games-revealed">some of the games</a>&nbsp;coming for it. We also got a look at some Oculus peripherals and companies that were partnering with Oculus to make their laptops VR ready. Then John Carmack closes with the hard-hitter that VR developers need to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97162/john-carmack-vr-developers-are-coasting-on-novelty-and-need-to-be-harder-on-themselves">start challenging themselves more and not be "coasting on novelty."</a></p> <p>Of course, leave it to Asif to <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97410/exclusive-interview-with-the-elephant-in-the-room-at-oculus-connect-3">address the elephant in the room</a>...</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 10:20:00 PDT -Shack Staff Everything We Know About King Knight, the Final 'Shovel Knight' Expansion http://www.shacknews.com/article/100411/everything-we-know-about-king-knight-the-final-shovel-knight-expansion http://www.shacknews.com/article/100411/everything-we-know-about-king-knight-the-final-shovel-knight-expansion <p>Shacknews' live E3 coverage started to wind down on Wednesday with something a little bit different. The fine folks at Yacht Club Games were invited into the Shacknews booth for a casual conversation about E3, game development, and some of the rockier moments the team experienced in bringing Shovel Knight to life.</p> <p>As the time came to wrap things up, there was still one more question to ask. What's the current status of King Knight, the third and final Shovel Knight expansion?</p> <p>Sean Velasco and Nick Wozniak were both happy to offer up the expansion's current status, so here's what we know so far.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0AgqbxzIuBo?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2>King Knight's story will have a lighter tone</h2> <p>Shovel Knight was a tale of heroism. It was a gallant knight traveling across the world to save his kingdom, as well as avenge his fallen partner. Plague of Shadows told the tale of the dark alchemist Plague Knight, who wished to gain his heart's desire by collecting enough essences to create his ultimate concoction. Specter of Torment was the story of a fallen thief, forced into the servitude of a great evil. All of these stories were epic tales in their own right, so what does King Knight bring to the table?</p> <p>Well, King Knight brings comic relief. Yacht Club notes that King Knight's story will carry a far lighter tone, compared to his predecessors, which will fall right in line with his character.</p> <p>"It's more wacky, it's more lighthearted," said Sean Velasco. "The personality of King Knight, we really want it to come through."</p> <p>Velasco and Wozniak noted that while Shovel Knight moves gallantly, Plague Knight moves sneakily, and Specter Knight moves swiftly, King Knight's movement will be a lot more "doofy." In fact, the first concept for his movement was revealed in a tweet back in June 2016.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p>We're creating two new Shovel Knight campaign updates! Specter is cool and King Knight rules. Here he is in action! <a href="https://t.co/tkIwxcA2Xy">pic.twitter.com/tkIwxcA2Xy</a></p> &mdash; Yacht Club Games (@YachtClubGames) <a href="https://twitter.com/YachtClubGames/status/738455004428664832">June 2, 2016</a></blockquote> <script async="" src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <h2>King Knight = Wario</h2> <p>The King Knight concept might sound strange, given his defining character trait is that he's a narcissistic dandy that pretends to be royalty. He's arrogant, he's selfish, he's out for himself and his treasures. But the picture starts to get a little clearer when Velasco compares him to a far more familiar face in gaming.</p> <p>"I feel like Wario is sort of similar," Velasco explained. "Wario's just like greedy, wants to make a billion dollars with his game company&hellip;"</p> <p>In that vein, Velasco and Wozniak stopped short of calling King Knight a "hero." He's the campaign's main character, but there's no mistaking that this story will be all about him and his selfish goals. And like Wario, Yacht Club is aiming for enough levity to keep the story grounded and lighthearted, giving players just enough reason to root for this goofball.</p> <h2>This is the end of 'Shovel Knight' for a while</h2> <p>After almost five years, Yacht Club Games is ready to say goodbye to the Shovel Knight world for a while. While Nintendo <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/91024/shovel-knight-gets-his-own-amiibo-as-nintendo-hints-at-inevitable-sequel">subtly hinted at a sequel</a> a while ago, Shovel Knight's creators are ready to move on from the world of shovelry first.</p> <p>"Battle Mode will be the last thing that we do for Shovel Knight I," Wozniak said. "And then&hellip; I don't want to bury it, but&hellip;"</p> <p>"Shovel Knight on ice for a little bit," Velasco added.</p> <p>So look for King Knight to not only have his own central campaign that focuses on him, but look for it to also be a story that gives all of the Shovel Knight characters a fitting tribute and sendoff.</p> <h2>Release Date</h2> <p>No release date has been issued just yet, but given that King Knight was in its early stages of development as Yacht Club was also working on Specter of Torment, don't expect the wait to be too much longer. The studio is actively working on the final campaign every day and is hopeful to release it soon.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 10:00:00 PDT Ozzie Mejia Super Mario Bros. Level Recreated Using HoloLens http://www.shacknews.com/article/100410/super-mario-bros-level-recreated-using-hololens http://www.shacknews.com/article/100410/super-mario-bros-level-recreated-using-hololens <p>Augmented reality is proving to be just as popular as virtual reality. Pokemon Go was the first AR title to achieve mainstream recognition, and now other are trying to emulate it. Of, course, there are others who want to have fun along the way as they develop a possible proof of concept.</p> <p>Developer&nbsp;<span>Abhishek Singh, 28, took about a month using Unity to recreate a Super Mario Bros. level for&nbsp;the Microsoft HoloLens. Dressed as Mario, he took it for a spin in New York's Central Park and it worked rather well. Granted he had to go around pipes and could jump up to other levels, but he was able to jump over holes in the ground and jump up to punch blocks to get coins. He could&nbsp;jump on Goombas for points, and he used a rather ingenious method of shrinking the environment when he jumps on a super mushroom, since he can't make himself grow.</span></p> <p>&ldquo;In Mario since all the action tends to start happening further out in front of you," <a href="https://uploadvr.com/super-mario-bros-ar-hololens/">Singh told UploadVR</a>. "I didn&rsquo;t find the limited field of view to be a hindrance. However I did find that if people aren&rsquo;t familiar with the level they might miss a few things.&rdquo;</p> <p>The whole process seems to be more of a "let's see if I can do this" project as opposed to a proof of concept. Given that players would need huge open spaces to play - Singh said the final level was around 110 meters - it doesn't seem practical. But it still is a rather interesting look at the different things that can be explored in AR.</p> <p>Watch the video below and note how passers-by seemed to ignore him as business as usual in New York City.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/RjJ44klc8zk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 09:30:00 PDT John Keefer Everything We Know About Red Dead Redemption 2 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100171/everything-we-know-about-red-dead-redemption-2 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100171/everything-we-know-about-red-dead-redemption-2 <p><span>We have been clamoring for a sequel ever since Red Dead released in 2010. Seven years later and it&rsquo;s finally happening. Rockstar treated us to a short cinematic trailer back in March that didn&rsquo;t reveal much, but got everyone excited to return to the old west.</span></p> <h2><span>Story and multiplayer details</span></h2> <p><span><span>One thing that definitely stood out in the Red Dead Redemption 2 trailer were the seven masked cowboys (and maybe a cowgirl?) barreling towards the horizon in the final seconds. Many believe that this could be pointing towards the ability to swap between characters in single player, very similar to the mechanic in Grand Theft Auto V. The issue here is that it would be a little over the top and overwhelming to most players if they were responsible to jump around and manage seven different characters at once. Maybe the focus will only be on three of these characters? Maybe these characters are a bandit group and will be the main antagonists of the game, both sound like an interesting premise to us.</span></span></p> <p><span>In Rockstar&rsquo;s short summary for the game, they say that &ldquo;The game&rsquo;s vast and atmospheric world also provides the foundation for a brand new online multiplayer experience.&rdquo; The online world of the first RDR was fun, but at times could feel empty and void of things to do. Imagining a fully fleshed out Red Dead Online world with capabilities that at <i>least </i>match those of GTA V gets us extremely pumped. Rockstar has the chance to put a unique western spin on an online formula they&rsquo;ve already perfected.</span></p> <h2><span><span>Release date and delay</span></span></h2> <p><span>When the Red Dead 2 trailer ended, it was revealed that the game would be out Fall 2017, a mere eight months after its official reveal. But it proved too good to be true. Rockstar announced a couple of weeks ago that in a very Rockstar like move, they are pushing back RDR2 to Spring 2018. All jokes aside, Rockstar has almost developed some sort of free pass when it comes to delays. The last several GTA titles, along with other acclaimed titles such as Bully and Midnight Club: Los Angeles all suffered some sort of delayed release, and all of them were damn amazing. Besides, this has already been one of the hottest years for video games in recent history. RDR2 will give all of us time to jump into some other titles we may have missed, and will soften the tension of the inevitable heated GOTY debates.</span></p> <p><span><span>To little surprise, Red Dead 2 wsas a no show at E3 this year, so there's no telling when Rockstar is going to hit us with a slew of new information. In the event that some more details on the game come out, we&rsquo;ll have them dissected and ready over at Shacknews.com!</span></span></p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 09:00:00 PDT Donovan Erskine ZeniMax Wants Another $500 Million From Oculus, Or 20% Of Rift Sales for 10 Years http://www.shacknews.com/article/100409/zenimax-wants-another-500-million-from-oculus-or-20-of-rift-sales-for-10-years http://www.shacknews.com/article/100409/zenimax-wants-another-500-million-from-oculus-or-20-of-rift-sales-for-10-years <p>The bad blood between ZeniMax and Oculus continues after the hotly contested trial over broken NDAs that <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/98860/oculus-cleared-of-theft-but-zenimax-awarded-due-to-nda-breach">resulted in a $500 million award for ZeniMax</a>. Oculus has <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99670/oculus-wont-stay-down-seeks-new-trial-in-500-million-zenimax-case">already filed for a new trial</a>, but the two parties were back in court with ZeniMax asking for even more money again.</p> <p>ZeniMax is seeking another $500 million (<a href="https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2017/06/zenimax-to-judge-block-oculus-sales-or-give-us-20/" target="_blank">via ArsTechnica</a>) because of the "ongoing harm" and an injunction to halt all Rift sales until the "stolen technology" is removed. If the court doesn't see fit to award that, then ZeniMax is seeking a 10-year deal for 20% of the revenue generated by the sale of Rift headsets.&nbsp;<span>"The jury verdict clearly establishes that Oculus wrongly obtained ZeniMax VR technology under the NDA and used it... to establish a business that would not have existed without ZeniMax," the filing states.</span></p> <p>Oculus, on the other hand, refuted the claims, saying that ZeniMax has not demonstrated ongoing harm, and that an injunction would be a disservice to the public, especially if Oculus had to rewrite the code at issue in the case. Oculus said that the lateness of ZeniMax's filing means that Oculus would need to go through even more testing, rewriting and preparation than it would if ZeniMax had filed its claim at the time the original NDA breach occurred.</p> <p>Even with the new filing, Oculus still is maintaining that the original jury verdict is flawed and should be thrown out.</p> <p><span>U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade of the Southern District of Texas, who is hearing the case, has asked ZeniMax for more information on the offending code that supposedly exists in the Rift headsets. He also <a href="https://www.law360.com/ip/articles/904628/zenimax-pushes-for-1b-win-following-oculus-trial?nl_pk=d58e8ade-9553-48f8-93a9-7a79e2a81211&amp;utm_source=newsletter&amp;utm_medium=email&amp;utm_campaign=ip" target="_blank">encouraged the two sides to somehow reach a settlement</a>, as he is not inclined to "split the baby," inferring that one side will not be happy with whatever he may end up ruling. That ruling could come any day, as the judge said that he wants to&nbsp;<span>"resolve the heck out of [this] big, hairy fight" as soon as possible.</span></span></p> <p>It is doubtful that a settlement will be reached as the two sides in this ugly divorce have too much riding on custody of the baby that is the Oculus Rift. It will probably take a Judge Kinkeade ruling to get both sides to get both sides to move on, although it sounds like only one side could be vindicated by&nbsp;the result.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 09:00:00 PDT John Keefer Everything We Know About Super Mario Odyssey http://www.shacknews.com/article/100162/everything-we-know-about-super-mario-odyssey http://www.shacknews.com/article/100162/everything-we-know-about-super-mario-odyssey <p>Don't let the mustachioed mascot's seemingly sentient cap fool you: despite a few new power-ups, <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99938/e3-2017-nintendo-will-focus-on-super-mario-odyssey-at-the-show">Super Mario Odyssey</a> looks to mark a return to form for single-player 3D Mario games&mdash;a branch of the plumber's family tree that hasn't sprouted new twigs since 2010's Super Mario Galaxy 2. Nintendo announced Super Mario Odyssey back in January during its Switch reveal presentation. The company went silent after that, but coughed up some important details at this year's E3.</p> <p>Post-E3 2017, here's a round-up of everything we know about Super Mario Odyssey so far.</p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 700px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/SuperMarioOdyssey_DesertTown1.png" alt="" width="700" height="394" /></div> <h2>Gameplay</h2> <p>While Super Mario Galaxy 2, Super Mario 3D Land, and Super Mario 3D World are all 3D platformers, Galaxy 2 is the odd game out. Set amid lots of pipes and pits, 3D Land and World concentrated on pure platforming&mdash;kind of like 2D Mario titles inflated into three dimensions. Additionally, Super Mario 3D World incorporated the New Super Mario Bros. series' brand of four-player gameplay that made partnering with friends as chaotic as it was fun.</p> <p>Super Mario Odyssey shares more in common with Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, and the Galaxy games on Wii. It's a single-player game set amid vast landscapes designed as much for exploration as for jumping over pits and stomping on Goombas. Those landscapes will be divided between the fantastical (such as an enchanted desert) and urban jungles such as New Donk City, reminiscent of a real-world metropolis. In media released so far, Mario hobnobs with humans, bounds atop taxi cabs, and swings over street lamps.</p> <p>It will be interesting to see how those contemporary settings bleed over into, and influence Mario's more traditional and gamey environments, if at all. Nintendo has said that players will travel between Super Mario Odyssey's sandbox-style areas aboard an airship. The vehicle could be a hub world a la the Comet Observatory in the original Super Mario Galaxy, or simply a means of jetting between areas akin to Super Mario Galaxy 2's Starship Mario vessel.</p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 700px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/SuperMarioOdyssey_City1.jpg" alt="" width="700" height="394" /></div> <h2>Power-Ups</h2> <p>Mario's an everyman hero, but he doesn't hesitate to dip into his bag of tricks when he needs to surpass a particularly tricky obstacle. Although old standbys like Super Mushrooms and Fire Flowers seem likely to return, screenshots and the game's only gameplay trailer (at present) indicate an emphasis on caps. In the trailer, Mario flings his trademark red cap across a pit, frisbee style. It hovers in midair for a moment before Mario bounces atop the cap to clear the expanse.</p> <p>Also note that at the end of the trailer, a pair of eyes appear within the cap, leading to speculation that the cap could be sentient a la the eponymous Minish Cap in the 2002 Zelda title for Game Boy Advance. These eyes can also be seen in the game's logo.&nbsp;(Another tidbit worth mentioning is that Bowser, busy kidnapping Princess Peach as usual, wears hats as well. The king of all the koopas has made a habit of copying Mario's signature abilities in recent games, such as sprouting a cat tail for the final battle of Super Mario 3D World.)&nbsp;</p> <p>The new trailer and gameplay demo for Super Mario Odyssey at E3 2017 confirmed that the iconic Mario hat will be sentient, and is the key component to one of the plumber's brand new abilities. By throwing and placing his hat, Mario can capture (possess) anything from an electrical fuse to a T-Rex. This skill will be vital to solving puzzles, traversing levels, and defeating enemies.</p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 700px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/SuperMarioOdyssey_CapShop1.jpg" alt="" width="700" height="394" /></div> <h2>Release Date</h2> <p>More than what moves and power-ups Mario has added to his repertoire, everyone wants to know when they'll be able to go on Mario's odyssey alongside him. Nintendo announced during their presentation at E3 that Super Mario Odyssey will hit Nintendo Switch consoles on October 27 this year!</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 08:30:00 PDT David Craddock BlizzCon Tickets Will again Be on Sale in July http://www.shacknews.com/article/100408/blizzcon-tickets-will-again-be-on-sale-in-july http://www.shacknews.com/article/100408/blizzcon-tickets-will-again-be-on-sale-in-july <p>If you were one of the unlucky ones that did not get a BlizzCon ticket in the first two rounds of pre-sales in April, you are in luck. Blizzard is adding a third round of ticket sales coming early next month for BlizzCon 2017.</p> <p><a href="https://blizzcon.com/en-us/news/20855979" target="_blank">Tickets will go on sale on July 5</a>&nbsp;at 7 p.m. PT / 10 p.m. ET. Yes, that means if you are on the east coast, you may need to stay up late to get one. The yearly two-day show is expanding into yet another hall at the Anaheim Convention Center, which means they need more people to crowd the place up. <a href="http://blizz.ly/1qpfPCi" target="_blank">The rules of the first two tickets</a>&nbsp;sales will apply here as well.&nbsp;</p> <p>If you won't be able to attend for any reason, Blizzard is still planning on offering its Virtual Ticket again this year, with all the perks that attendees get without the hassle of the crowds. You'll get the special gifts and be able to see livestreams of the panels and competitions from the comfort of your living room or office desk chair. If prices hold true to last year, you should be able to get one for around $40.</p> <p>BlizzCon runs November 3-4 this year, with Blizzard's six franchises likely on display. News and panels are expected on Overwatch, World of Warcraft, the StarCraft series, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm and the Diablo franchise. There is even a possibility that Destiny 2 could be at the show, since Bungie's anticipated sequel <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100282/e3-2017-destiny-2-outlines-beta-and-pc-release-dates">will have released by then</a>&nbsp;as an exclusive sale through the Blizzard store and will be <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99996/destiny-2-to-use-blizzard-launcher-for-pc-will-ignore-steam">part of the Blizzard Launcher</a>.</p> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 07:55:00 PDT John Keefer Pokemon Go Launches New Anti-Cheat Measures http://www.shacknews.com/article/100407/pokemon-go-launches-new-anti-cheat-measures http://www.shacknews.com/article/100407/pokemon-go-launches-new-anti-cheat-measures <p>Developer Niantic Labs continues to try to dissuade users from using any type of third-party add-ons for Pokemon Go. A new update has taken things a step further with suspected cheaters having their Pokemon directly affected.</p> <p>Niantic <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/pokemongo/comments/6ihyoi/update_on_pok%C3%A9mon_caught_using_thirdparty/" target="_blank">warned of the impending change</a>&nbsp;in a post on reddit:</p> <blockquote>"<span>With the announcement of <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100387/pokemon-go-launches-new-gyms-raids-and-promises-more-to-come">Raid Battles and the new battle features</a>, we are staying true on our commitment to ensuring that Pok&eacute;mon GO continues to be a fun and fair experience for all Trainers. Starting today, Pok&eacute;mon caught using third-party services that circumvent normal gameplay will appear marked with a slash in the inventory and may not behave as expected. We are humbled by the excitement for all the new features we announced yesterday.This is one small part of our continued commitment to maintaining the integrity of our community and delivering an amazing Pok&eacute;mon GO experience."</span></blockquote> <p>There weren't many details on exactly what types of third-party add-ons will be flagged, and Niantic said that they won't go into exact details of what "may not behave as expected" actually means. Likely the biggest culprits will be GPS spoofers and mappers.</p> <p>Since the change, reports have started to surface on what these erratic Pokemon do. Pokemon caught using a third party app are getting "slashed" in the Pokemon inventory, meaning they can't be used. There are also reports that offending Pokemon turned in&nbsp;to the professor <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/TheSilphRoad/comments/6ioi1l/slash_goes_away_upon_evolution/" target="_blank">do not get any candy</a>&nbsp;in return. Reddit user KERL0N from Romania posted <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/TheSilphRoad/comments/6ini8o/image_with_pok%C3%A9mon_caught_using_thirdparty/" target="_blank">this image</a>, saying that some of his slashed Pokemon were caught back in early April. Some Pokemon can get the <a href="https://webmshare.com/play/bQqGx" target="_blank">slash removed if you evolve them</a>, but that is likely an oversight that could be fixed in a subsequent hot fix.&nbsp;</p> <p>Despite the crackdown, conversation continues among some&nbsp;players trying to find a way to best the system. Given Niantic's track record in hating anything that goes against its&nbsp;terms of service, you can bet they will continue <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100070/pokemon-go-cheaters-will-now-find-only-boring-monsters">modifying their anti-cheat measures</a>&nbsp;to stay ahead of the cheaters.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 15:30:00 PDT John Keefer Rumor: Visceral's Star Wars Game Gets First Plot Details http://www.shacknews.com/article/100406/rumor-viscerals-star-wars-game-gets-first-plot-details http://www.shacknews.com/article/100406/rumor-viscerals-star-wars-game-gets-first-plot-details <p>We've known that Visceral Games has a Star Wars title in the works. Nothing was mentioned at EA E3 press conference about it, meaning it is still in a galaxy far, far away. However, a Star Wars fan site is reporting some details that could give us the first clue on what to expect.</p> <p><a href="http://makingstarwars.net/2017/06/rumor-the-main-character-of-viscerals-star-wars-game-plot-and-more/" target="_blank">MakingStarWars.net is reporting</a>&nbsp;several plot details for Project Ragtag, the code name for the new game, and on the chance that some of these details are accurate, we will throw out a big SPOILER warning now. So you are warned. Also, you can intersperse the words supposedly and rumored through the next few paragraphs.</p> <p>The game will be set between the time of Star Wars IV: A New Hope and Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back. Writer Todd Stashwick (<em>12 Monkeys</em>) is penning the story along with Visceral's Amy Hennig. The main character is a shady individual named Dodger who had been at home on Alderaan. He got the nickname when he avoided military service with the Imperial army. Once Alderaan and the Death Star are destroyed, Dodger ends up doing work for Jabba the Hutt and the Hutt criminal underground. He also finds he is wanted by the Empire and is on a known "survivors list" as the Empire sweeps through the outer rim hunting for the&nbsp;rebel elements responsible for the Death Star's destruction.</p> <p>In his time working for Jabba, Dodger is saving money to buy his way off the list, but being part of the underground gets him access to various information about the Empire's plans, causing him to rethink his past and confront the destruction of his home world, and forcing him into an unlikely alliance with the rebels.</p> <p>We won't steal all the thunder from the article, where&nbsp;you can read more on Dodger's abilities and weapons. While these reports could be true now, the development of any game in its early stages is very fluid and things could change drastically before we even make it to an official announcement. The game isn't set for release <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/95194/e3-2016-ea-announces-release-window-for-viscerals-star-wars-game">until sometime later next year</a>, and there is the specter of Star Wars 1313 looming in the background.</p> <p>Visceral Games has a strong track record, with games like Dead Space under its belt. It also is home to developer Hennig, who is also getting collaboration from&nbsp;Kim Swift and Jade Raymond, all of whom know a thing or two about making quality games. <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/95018/jade-raymond-provides-update-on-star-wars-titles-from-motive-visceral-games">Raymond said around this time last year</a>&nbsp;that "<span>the team at Visceral Games is forging ahead into an exciting phase of development. Seeing Amy Hennig lead this team through the creative process has been incredible. She is a rare breed of storyteller, and she&rsquo;s collaborating with the creative leaders at Lucasfilm to tell a new, authentic Star Wars story."</span></p> <p>Suffice it to say, take this with more than a grain of salt, but if true, it sounds pretty interesting</p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 14:30:00 PDT John Keefer Everything Sony Announced At E3 2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100403/everything-sony-announced-at-e3-2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100403/everything-sony-announced-at-e3-2017 <p>Last year at E3, Sony shifted its presentation to focus heavily on trailers and a flashy stage show. Announcing game after game, along with new titles&nbsp;such as Insomniac's Spider-Man and Detroit: Become human, fans were pumped for what Sony had in store. The issue is, most of those games were in extremely early stages of development. Because of this, at their conference last week at E3 2017, Sony showed a lot of games we had previously heard about. Their conferenced lacked the wow factor from 2016, but we definitely got more substance and insight into the games of tomorrow.</p> <h2>Uncharted 4: Lost Legacy</h2> <p><span>We were shown a nice cinematic trailer for Uncharted 4&rsquo;s upcoming DLC, starring Claudia Black. We weren&rsquo;t given much more story details but we did get a release date. Uncharted: Lost Legacy hits PS4 on August 22. Our coverage on the DLC can be found <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100272/e3-2017-uncharted-the-lost-legacy-coming-august-22">here</a>.</span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/i8qzBkHjk_0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span>Horizon: Zero Dawn DLC</span></h2> <p><span><span>Not yet given a certain release date, the first major expansion for Horizon: Zero Dawn is called <i>The Frozen Wilds</i> and hits later this year.</span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/J5xsS1WZA54" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2>Days Gone</h2> <p><span>We got to see about seven minutes of gameplay from Sony&rsquo;s next post-apocalyptic title Days Gone. We got a little taste of combat, stealth and manipulating zombies to take out enemies. The game is set to come out sometime next year. We dove into <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100318/e3-2017-days-gone-is-more-horizon-zero-dawn-than-last-of-us">how Days Gone borrows more from Horizon: Zero Dawn than The Last of Us</a>.</span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/4SnXOtfN7VQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span>Monster Hunter World</span></h2> <p><span><span>Sony showcased some of the fun adventures and hijinks that players will get into in the online world of Monster Hunter. They also announced that the game will be launching on PS4/Xbox One in early 2018, and will come to PC at a later date.</span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SE_FnuD9zJc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span><span>Shadow Of The Colossus remake</span></span></h2> <p><span><span><span>It was revealed that the beloved 2005 PS2 exclusive title Shadow of the Colossus will be getting a complete remake for the PS4 from Bluepoint Games. More on the remake for this iconic game can be read about over on&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100275/e3-2017-shadow-of-the-colossus-is-getting-remastered">Shacknews</a></span></span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/pdZQ98mWeto" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span><span><span>New PSVR games</span></span></span></h2> <p><span><span><span><span>Sony recently announced that the PSVR had crossed 1 million sales, and at E3 they showed off several new games coming to the platform. Skyrim VR, Bravo Team, Star Child, The Inpatient, Monster Of The Deep, and Moss are all games PSVR owners can look forward to in the not so near future.</span></span></span></span></p> <h2><span><span><span><span>God Of War</span></span></span></span></h2> <p><span><span><span><span><span>This time around we got to see some extended gameplay, plus a closer look at the relationship between Kratos and his son. We still don&rsquo;t have an official title, but the new God Of War is set to come out early 2018. Head <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100390/e3-2017-god-of-wars-cory-barlog-on-how-creative-conflict-shaped-kratos-new-adventure">here</a>&nbsp;to check out our interview with the games director.</span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gOE2BVRCUkM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span><span><span>Detroit: Become Human</span></span></span></h2> <p><span><span><span><span>Detroit seems to have a fresh and original premise, while also keeping those trademark David Cage isms that we&rsquo;re all familiar with. The major draw for this game is that players will have to make choices throughout the story that heavily impact and change the narrative. No release date yet but Detroit has been confirmed for 2018.</span></span></span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/sAmKdZdfV1c" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><span><span><span>Spider-Man</span></span></span></h2> <p><span><span><span><span>Sony ended their 2017 E3 conference in the best way possible, with Insomniacs new Spider-Man game! We were shown a 10 minute gameplay demo that showed off combat, web gadgets, and spidey swinging around Manhattan. There was even a quick tease of Miles Morales at the end of the demo. Unfortuntely, all we got on a release date was "2018." You can check out our interview with the creative director of the game <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100396/insomniacs-bryan-intihar-on-spinning-a-better-spider-man">here</a>.</span></span></span></span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/K4zm30yeHHE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 12:10:00 PDT Donovan Erskine Anthem: Everything We Know So Far http://www.shacknews.com/article/100405/anthem-everything-we-know-so-far http://www.shacknews.com/article/100405/anthem-everything-we-know-so-far <p>BioWare's new IP Anthem was finally revealed at E3 this year, and while we didn't see a lot, or get any hands-on time, the trailer filled in some bits and pieces we had heard about the game previously. Here's a rundown of everything we know.</p> <h2>Release Date</h2> <p>Anthem is still a ways off from release. It was originally planned for&nbsp;release in fiscal year 2018, but in EA's latest earnings call, <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99912/biowares-new-live-service-ip-codenamed-dylan-delayed-to-fy-2019">the game was moved back to FY 2019</a>, meaning&nbsp;<span>late 2018 or early 2019.</span></p> <h2>Setting</h2> <p>The futuristic setting places players on as yet unnamed planet in a settlement called Fort Tarsus. The makeshift city&nbsp;is surrounded by large walls that keep its inhabitants protected from wild creatures and some unforgiving "shaper" storms. When players leave Fort Tarsus, they do so in a variety of Javelin exosuits, equipped with different armaments and abilities. Whether Fort Tarsus is the only known settlement was unclear, but from the trailer we know that players were higher level, so this could be a settlement that players get to after they have spent some time leveling. The town allows for&nbsp;loading up new gear, changing out exosuits, and getting new missions.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/wi0Uq7QmKm4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2>The Story</h2> <p>We don't have many details on the underlying story yet, but game director John Warner, who narrated the trailer,&nbsp;mentioned that there will be "large scale world events like Shaper stories."&nbsp;These are dynamic and can pull you off-missions, only to discover new story elements. The example in the trailer was a "Shaper storm," a large electrical event that forced the call for reinforcements. The trailer ends with players flying into the storm.</p> <p>It is unclear how much backstory we will get, as to how the walled cities were created, or how the world came to be settled. But EA CEO Andrew Wilson's comment that "the great RPG character development and story progression that BioWare is known for" would be evidenced in the game gives hope that we will get all of that and more.</p> <h2>The&nbsp;Gameplay</h2> <p>Players take on the role of Freelancers, who are the ones lucky enough to have exosuits and go outside the wall. From the trailer, we find that occasionally non-Freelancers make it outside the wall for missions, but usually aren't as well equipped. There are a variety of exosuits, but right now we only know of two. The Colossus is a tanking machine that can take lots of damage, and the trailer had one equipped with a mortar. The Ranger is more balanced, offering a jetpack for speed, and one weapon that could target multiple enemies and launch rockets at each.</p> <p>We see some massive monsters that can attack with sheer brute strength, and other creatures known as Scars using robotic units to take out larger mechanized vehicles. Some creatures are even capable of using beam or pulse weapons.</p> <p>While out on missions, players gain XP from exploration and taking out enemies. They can collect treasure and gear, such as a Legendary Volt Rifle called Jarra's Wrath. The weapon itself was level 35, so it is likely that players will need to do significant adventuring and upgrading to get to that point.</p> <p>The game is an action adventure with some RPG elements, and appears to have a drop-in, drop-out multiplayer system. As the trailer was nearing its end, we saw one of the players saying they could use more help, and two new exosuited players dropped in for the excursion. It is two-player co-op, but can have up to four players at any time. They were level 31 and 36, so it seems likely the game will allow for some variance in levels when grouping together.</p> <p>EA is developing the game as a social title with "live services," and hashing out these services to be the best they can be was the main reason for the game's delay.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EL5GSfs9fi4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 12:00:00 PDT John Keefer 'Sega Forever' Brings Back Classics for Free, with a Catch http://www.shacknews.com/article/100404/sega-forever-brings-back-classics-for-free-with-a-catch http://www.shacknews.com/article/100404/sega-forever-brings-back-classics-for-free-with-a-catch <p>Sega is paying homage to its classic library of games, but the format may not be ideal. The new "Sega Forever" collection is a line-up of free-to-play games from the&nbsp;heyday of Sega's console dominance. The catch? It's only available on mobile devices, and ad-supported.</p> <p>The first five Sega Forever games will hit the App Store and Google Play tomorrow. Those include Sonic the Hedgehog, Phantasy Star II, Comix Zone, Kid Chameleon, and Altered Beast. The iOS versions include iMessage sticker packs. If you'd rather pay for an ad-free version, you can shell out $1.99 per game. New games will be added each month with Sega titles from all console eras.</p> <p>Mobile ports of classic games have been hit-or-miss, as in the case of the messy Mega Man games that hit mobile earlier this year. Even if the emulation works perfectly, though, virtual controls and third-party controllers aren't ideal. As a way to try out some classics it will probably work well enough, though, and at the low, low cost of zero dollars it doesnt hurt to indulge in a little nostalgia.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/NPnCBe0cLos" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 11:30:00 PDT Steve Watts Pillars of Eternity Announces Release Date for PS4 and Xbox One http://www.shacknews.com/article/100402/pillars-of-eternity-announces-release-date-for-ps4-and-xbox-one http://www.shacknews.com/article/100402/pillars-of-eternity-announces-release-date-for-ps4-and-xbox-one <p>Paradox Interactive has been busy, giving us two separate announcements today. One had the stellar isometric RPG Pillar of Eternity making its way to consoles on August 29, and the other has Cities: Skylines moving to PS4 after a positive reception on Xbox One.</p> <p>Pillars of Eternity: Compete Edition, which will sell for $50 for both Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions, will include the base game and the two-part White Marsh expansions, as well as all the updates and tweaks in-between that made it to the PC version. It is being ported to console by Paradox Arctic, which is working closely with original developer Obsidian Entertainment to ensure the same quality experience.</p> <p>Pillars of Eternity made a great showing on PC back in 2015, <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/92595/2015-game-of-the-year-6-pillars-of-eternity-tie">making Shacknews' Top 10 for the year</a>. The game and both expansions&nbsp;did so well that developer Obsidian Entertainment <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/98893/pillars-of-eternity-2-deadfire-tops-2-million-collected-with-22-days-left">successfully crowdfunded</a>&nbsp;a sequel,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/98777/pillars-of-eternity-ii-deadfire-announced-by-obsidian">Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire</a>, earlier this year.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/dJBhF5Q4foI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>As for Cities: Skylines, Paradox revealed that the game will be getting a release on PlayStation 4 on August 15. The game is being ported to PS4 by Tantalus Media, "<span>redesigned for console players with controller-friendly gameplay and UI." The new edition will include the base game and the After Dark expansion. Three other expansions have released for the game - Snowfall, Mass transit and Natural Disasters - but none of those were mentioned. The <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/99088/cities-skylines-lands-on-xbox-one-this-spring">Xbox One version</a>&nbsp;released on April 21.</span></p> <p><span><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/1TFAXEJfon4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></span></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 10:00:00 PDT John Keefer Catch Up With All of Shacknews' E3 Podcasts http://www.shacknews.com/article/100401/catch-up-with-all-of-shacknews-e3-podcasts http://www.shacknews.com/article/100401/catch-up-with-all-of-shacknews-e3-podcasts <p>E3 is behind us and we're all buckling down for the busy year ahead after seeing a veritable shipload of games slated for the coming months. In the midst of the busy show, we sat down for several podcasts: every day, from Saturday to Thursday. If you missed some, catch up now for all of our thoughts on the conferences, standout games, the state of the show, and more. <a href="http://Shacknews.podbean.com/feed/" target="_blank">Subscribe</a>&nbsp;or check below for individual episodes.</p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day -2</h2> <p>E3 came early this year! EA kicked off the event by holding its press conference on a Saturday, and the Chattycast is here to talk all about the first day's festivities. We recap the EA press conference, give firsthand impressions of Star Wars Battlefront 2, and look ahead to tomorrow.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/3nf5t-6bc360?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/3nf5t-6bc360?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day -1</h2> <p>E3 draws ever nearer, and the Chattycast returns with another special edition. This late-night chat goes a little off-the-rails as we get more loopy, but you'll still find plenty of talk about hands-on with EA games, Microsoft's and Bethesda's conferences, and what we expect and hope to see tomorrow.</p> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/97jpg-6bcc59?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/97jpg-6bcc59?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day 0</h2> <p>The crew is back with one more pre-E3 episode before the big event. In it, we talk about&nbsp;some games at the Microsoft showcase, recap the Ubisoft and Sony press conferences, and turn our eyes toward the very last pre-E3 event of the year: Nintendo's morning presentation. It's all leading up to the big show, and Shacknews will be live streaming with special guests throughout all three days. Make sure to come watch and tune in for our post-show!</p> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/hjfx2-6bd771?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/hjfx2-6bd771?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day 1</h2> <p>The Shacknews crew wraps a full day of live interviews with our annual post-show tradition. We chat about the Nintendo conference, Mario Odyssey, Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, Days Gone, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, Wolfenstein 2, and much more. Plus we recap some of our interviews from throughout the day. Stay tuned for more live interviews and another post-show episode tomorrow!</p> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/bcss9-6bdf8d?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/bcss9-6bdf8d?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day 2</h2> <p>With day two of E3 behind us, the Shacknews Live post-show took a fond look back at some of our favorite and most memorable games and interviews from throughout the day: Super Mario Odyssey, Fire Emblem Warriors, Call of Duty: WW2, Destiny 2, Total War: Warhammer, and much more. We've got one more day ahead!</p> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/wz72h-6be971?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/wz72h-6be971?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> <h2>Chattycast E3 2017 Special: Day 3</h2> <p>Shacknews is back with its final E3 post-show of the year. The crew assembles one more time to have a long talk about some of the show's highlights and low-lights, the first E3 open to the public, and the state of the&nbsp;show as a whole. We wrap it all up with a contest to give away some show swag and a Nintendo Switch! Listen for details on how to enter, and thanks for supporting us throughout this year's conference!</p> <div class="podPress_content"> <div class="aplayer-panel pbplayerBox aplayer-bg theme1" data-source="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/kuwyw-6bf449?from=wp&amp;vjs=1&amp;mini=1&amp;skin=1&amp;initByJs=0&amp;auto=1" data-uri="http://Shacknews.podbean.com/mf/play/p9et35/chattycast-e3-2017-day-3.mp3"> <div class="aplayer-bg"><span></span></div> </div> </div> <p><iframe width="100%" height="100" src="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/kuwyw-6bf449?from=yiiadmin" data-link="https://www.podbean.com/media/player/kuwyw-6bf449?from=yiiadmin" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" data-name="pb-iframe-player"></iframe></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 07:30:00 PDT Steve Watts Everything Electronic Arts Announced at EA Play for E3 2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100400/everything-electronic-arts-announced-at-ea-play-for-e3-2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100400/everything-electronic-arts-announced-at-ea-play-for-e3-2017 <p>Electronic Arts again was a no show at the E3 show this year, but they still had a presence within striking distance of the convention with EA Play 2017. Some of the bigger EA franchises were on display, as well as first look at a couple of new ones. Here's what EA revealed at their show. &nbsp;</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100204/e3-2017-star-wars-battlefront-2-multiplayer-debuts-at-ea-conference">Star Wars Battlefront 2 multiplayer on display</a></h2> <p>We already knew that the single-player campaign was going to focus on the Imperial side of the story, but we also got a look at the multiplayer. The map showcased was on Naboo, set in the prequel era of the game. Players can expect the game to cover all three eras of the movies, with EA promising plenty of content for the game over the next several years.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_q51LZ2HpbE?list=PLLy6qvPKpdlV3OAw00EuZMoYPz4pYuwuN" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100203/e3-2017-anthem-is-biowares-new-ip">Anthem is BioWare's new IP</a></h2> <p>All we knew about this previously was that its codename was Dylan, and that it was perhaps the largest project BioWare had ever undertaken. EA showed a teaser for the game, including the menacing game world and some of the exosuits that would be prominent as part of game play. However, they left <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100233/e3-2017-biowares-new-ip-anthem-gets-more-details-at-ms-conference">the bulk of the reveal to Microsoft's press conference</a>&nbsp;the following day. The game won't be out until sometime in fiscal year 2019.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/wi0Uq7QmKm4?list=PLLy6qvPKpdlV3OAw00EuZMoYPz4pYuwuN" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100202/e3-2017-nba-live-18-confirms-nba-live-still-exists">NBA Live 18 shows the franchise still exists</a></h2> <p>Despite not being THE NBA game most know, EA debuted the next installment in the series after a year's hiatus. Story mode, something added to FIFA last year and Madden this year, will be debuting, along with new mechanics and 5-on-5 street games when you don't want to play the standard NBA game. A demo will be coming in August.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/2XQfMT4OqvE?list=PLLy6qvPKpdlV3OAw00EuZMoYPz4pYuwuN" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100200/e3-2017-need-for-speed-payback-zooming-to-retailers-november-10">Need for Speed Payback will be out in November</a></h2> <p>The Need for Speed franchise is returning with a new story focusing on three driver going after a gambling crime family for a bit of revenge. While going through the campaign, players will be able to complete challenges and events to enhance their vehicles as the competition gets tougher. It looks to be everything we've come to expect from the series, and maybe a bit more. The game will hit shelves on November 10.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/K-5EdHZ0hBs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100201/e3-2017-ea-introduces-a-way-out-from-brothers-a-tale-of-two-sons-dev">A Way Out is a surprise and looks great</a></h2> <p>One of the more interesting reveals from EA Play was A Way Out, coming from the developer of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons. The trailer showed two men breaking out of prison, with each showing their various motivations as the game progresses. The split-screen offering will let two players take the role of each character, with an open-world experience allowing multiple ways to accomplish tasks. Look for the game sometime next year.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/yGZGSdgJVPM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100199/e3-2017-ea-details-battlefield-1-in-the-name-of-the-tsar-expansion">Battlefield 1: In the Name of the Tsar</a></h2> <p>It would be an EA Play without showing something from the publisher's most popular franchise. Battlefield 1 got its time with the reveal of In Name of the Tsar DLC, which will focus on multiplayer and the Russian front. As with every expansion, there will be&nbsp;new maps, characters and weapons, and female soldiers will hit the battlefield for the first time. Prior to launch, EA will release two more maps from the French campaign. In the Name of the Tsar will be coming in September.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/O3zza3ofZ0Q?list=PLLy6qvPKpdlV3OAw00EuZMoYPz4pYuwuN" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100198/e3-2017-madden-nfl-18-shows-off-new-story-mode">Madden NFL 18 adds a story mode</a></h2> <p>As with FIFA the year before, EA has added a Story Mode to Madden. This story, called Longshot, will focus on a University of Texas player named Wade trying to make it in the NFL. You can expect the usual tweaks, balances and roster changes the franchise usually offers with its yearly updates. The game will be out on August 25.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="369" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/cBZwjP6MpZo?list=PLLy6qvPKpdlV3OAw00EuZMoYPz4pYuwuN" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2>FIFA 18 story mode again focuses on Alex Hunter</h2> <p>The fictional Alex Hunter, star of FIFA 17's new Story Mode, will be making his return in FIFA 18. This time most of the world's best futbol players know about him, and make a rather convincing argument for their video-game-only counterpart. The game will launch on September 29.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/GbK_Xw5BiSw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Wed, 21 Jun 2017 07:00:00 PDT John Keefer Review: Synology Router RT2600ac http://www.shacknews.com/article/100386/review-synology-router-rt2600ac http://www.shacknews.com/article/100386/review-synology-router-rt2600ac <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Synology recently launched their new Synology Router RT2600ac and VPN Plus. The RT2600ac is an upgrade to the popular RT1900ac router with a focus on high-speed and security. &nbsp;We took a look and while it's not as high-performance as some of its competition, it comes with an impressive suite of bells and whistles.&nbsp;</span></p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 800px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/profile.png" alt="profile view" width="100%" /></div> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">In the box, it came with the RT2600ac router, 4 antennas, ac wall power adapter, cat 5 network cable, and a quick start guide for installation options and QR code to download DS Router apps from iOS App Store and Google Play. It can easily be placed on a table or mounted without attracting much attention with its matt black plastic outer shell. The footprint is roughly 6.7 inches by 11.2 inches.</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">The RT2600ac highlights:</span></p> <ul> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">1.7GHz Dual-core processor for fast, uncompromising performance</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Powerful 4x4 802.11ac wave 2 radios with MU-MIMO and up to 2.53Gbps breakthrough wireless speeds</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Smart Connect for seamless transition between maximum speed or range</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Hardware accelerated Layer 7 traffic control and monitoring</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Dual WAN capable for load balancing and failover support</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Create advanced VPNs with WebVPN, Synology SSL VPN, and SSTP VPN capability</span></li> <li class="li3"><span class="s1">Powerful add-on packages to enhance security, file sharing, and additional functionality</span></li> </ul> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 800px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/status.jpg" alt="network status" width="800" height="465" /></div> <p class="p2">Initial installation and setup was quick and simple. After the router is power on we followed the quick start guide to access the router&rsquo;s web interface. It is powered by Synology Router manager (SRM) operating system. At the time of our test, the RT2600ac was using SRM Version: 1.1.3-6447-3 (2017/02/14). &nbsp;On the desktop is a web app called Package Center, a repository for additional web applications. Intrusion Prevention came pre-installed. An external USB storage, such as flash drive, is required for installing additional packages.&nbsp;</p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1"> In our use use case, we placed the RT2600 at a home/office covering 2600 sqft. The RT2600ac has two USB ports, one USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0. We used a Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate G3 64GB USB 3.0 with the USB 3.0 port. The USB 2.0 port can be used for other peripherals such as printers.</span></p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 800px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/wireless.jpg" alt="wireless status" width="800" height="430" /></div> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Synology Smart Connect combined the 2.4Ghz and 5.0Ghz wireless bands to one SSID. Rather then selecting which band we wish to use, Sinology will automatically pick one for my device depending on overall status of the bands with the connected devices. We can always disable this functionality and individually configure the bands but we had no reason to since we saw no issues with speed or stability.&nbsp; Like most wireless routers, the RT2600ac supports WEP, WPA/WPA 2 Personal and Enterprise, and Password security levels. We can further restrict access based on MAC address.</span></p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 800px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/traffic_control.jpg" alt="traffic control" width="800" height="326" /></div> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Using Traffic Control, we have an easy to use interface for prioritizing traffic. Even during peak usage, we can guarantee bandwidth. As a Twitch partner, we appreciated this easy to use functionality and it helped insure smooth gameplay.</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Other packages we found useful were Media Server and Cloud Station Server. Media Server provided support for DLNA home devices. We can enjoy our movies and shows from the XBOX. As for Cloud Station, it helped keep specific folders on our staff&rsquo;s computers in sync. We have a Synology NAS running at our headquarters. Cloud Station can also be used to keep files in sync between the two NAS.</span></p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 580px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/disk_speed_test.jpg" alt="speed test" width="580" height="600" /></div> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Let&rsquo;s talk performance. The computer used for the test is a MacBook Pro Retina Late 2013 running OS 10.11.6. We left Synology&rsquo;s Intrusion Prevention package running on the RT2600ac. Using Blackmagic Design Disk Speed Test, we conducted a 2 GB stress test against the Kingston DataTraveler flash drive. It yielded an impressive 24.9 MB/s write and 27.5 MB/s read.</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">We also measured performance using LAN Speed Test transferring a 20 MB file.</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Version 1.3.1 OS Version: Mac OS X Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-4850HQ CPU @ 2.30GHz Date: 02/25/2017 Time: 10:28:13 Program Parameters: 0 High Performance Timer: 0.000000001</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">Test File: /Volumes/usbshare1/myTest/NW_SpeedTest.dat Write Time = 5.4439444 Seconds Write Speed = 29.3904560 Mbps Read Time = 0.4174638 Seconds Read Speed = 383.2667840 Mbps</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">As we see from these metrics the router&nbsp;performed well, 29.3 Mbps write and 383.2 Mbps read. &nbsp;In real world use cases, we can stream video from the shared storage to my computer while others on the same network game or watch streaming video. &nbsp;There was some performance degradation should someone on the network perform writes ot the shared storage. &nbsp;The RT2600ac will automatically allocate swap space to accommodate&nbsp;but this does impact other users on the network.&nbsp;</span></p> <div class="articleImage full" style="width: 800px;"><img src="https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/shacknews/assets/editorial/2017/06/package_center.jpg" alt="package center" width="800" height="504" /></div> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">The VPN Plus Server is new to RT2600ac. For situations were you need additional security or handle HIPAA related content, VPN Plus turns the Synology router into a power VPN server. It supports WebVPN, SSL VPN, SSTP, OPENVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP. VPN Plus Server came with 1 license. Additional licenses were not available for purchase during our testing period.</span></p> <p class="p2"><span class="s1">The Synology RT2600ac is a good performing 802.11ac router with a wide range of useful features thanks to the Package Center. This may not be the fastest router we&rsquo;ve tested but thanks to it&rsquo;s MU-MIMO support we saw no interruptions with gameplay streams.&nbsp;</span></p> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 23:55:00 PDT Michael Wang Diablo 3 Rise of the Necromancer DLC Coming Next Week http://www.shacknews.com/article/100399/diablo-3-rise-of-the-necromancer-dlc-coming-next-week http://www.shacknews.com/article/100399/diablo-3-rise-of-the-necromancer-dlc-coming-next-week <p>If you are still deeply entrenched in Diablo 3, then you have been looking forward to the Rise of the Necromancer DLC that was&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97556/blizzcon-2016-diablo-3-getting-a-new-necromancer-hero-class">announced at last year's BlizzCon</a>. Your wait is coming to an end, however, as Blizzard has revealed that the new pack is coming on June 27 for $14.99.&nbsp;</p> <p>The DLC, along with the planned 2.6.0 patch, will be available after servers are updated next week. In addition to the new class, players will get a non-combat pet, two additional character slots and two ore stash tabs, although the latter won't be available at launch on console. There will also be Necromancer themed items such as sigil, accent portrait frame and banner shape. The DLC is available on PC, Xbox One and PS4.</p> <p>The <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100002/diablo-3s-necromancer-beta-is-now-live">new hero class has been in beta</a>&nbsp;since the middle of last month&nbsp;and gotten some favorable response from fans, especially since it is essentially a rejuvenation of the Diablo 2 necro. The class will be available in both campaign and adventure modes. Console players who have not yet purchased the game can get the Diablo 3 Ultimate Edition and the Necromancer pack as the Diablo 3: Eternal Collection for $59.99.</p> <p>Even if you don't buy the DLC, you'll still get the 2.6.0 update, which will add&nbsp;<span>Challenge Rifts, The Shrouded Moors zone, Temple of the Firstborn zone, and the Realms of Fate, provided you own the Reaper of Souls expansion.</span></p> <p><span>PC servers will be updated at 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET in North America, while console servers will be updated at 8 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. ET.</span></p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/2ad3hvpG1jg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 16:30:00 PDT John Keefer God of War As a 'Child-Abuse Simulator' Didn't Work Well http://www.shacknews.com/article/100398/god-of-war-as-a-child-abuse-simulator-didnt-work-well http://www.shacknews.com/article/100398/god-of-war-as-a-child-abuse-simulator-didnt-work-well <p>God of War is adding a wrinkle to its story this time, not counting the switch from Greek to Norse mythology. Now, the always-angry Kratos is a dad, and a character the development team at Sony Santa Monica has occasionally struggled with the find the right mix of deadly fighter mixed with firm instructive father figure.</p> <p>Game director Cory Barlog said the team has gone back and forth several times on how Kratos should be portrayed, even taking him so far down the angry path that he was always mean to his son Atreus. "<span>We were writing Kratos, and the team was just not feeling it early on," Barlog said <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100390/e3-2017-god-of-wars-cory-barlog-on-how-creative-conflict-shaped-kratos-new-adventure">in an interview with Shacknews</a>. "It's very hard to find the balance of this guy. We either went too far and everyone was like, &lsquo;This is so depressing, Kratos is so mean. He's terrible. It's a child-abuse simulator; he's yelling at his kid all the time.&rsquo; We went, &lsquo;Okay, we went too far there.&rsquo; Then we pulled back, and people said, &lsquo;He's like Obi-Wan Kenobi now. He's too nice.&rsquo; Then we had to find that just-right spot.&rdquo;</span></p> <p>Kratos is experiencing the growing pains of what it is like to be a father, much the way first-time dads do in real life.&nbsp;<span>&ldquo;It's not happening overnight,&rdquo; Barlog said. &ldquo;He's still going to stumble, he's still going to fail, just like we did when we started."</span></p> <p><span>The conflict is obvious, especially from the trailer from Sony's E3 presentation last&nbsp;year. Kratos tries to mentor the boy without losing his temper. At the same time, at about the 8:15 mark in the trailer, when Atreus broods at not being able to finish a kill without the guiding hand of his father, we see Kratos extend a hand to comfort the boy, only to pull it back so as not to show too much of a soft side.</span></p> <p><span>Be sure to check out the <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100390/e3-2017-god-of-wars-cory-barlog-on-how-creative-conflict-shaped-kratos-new-adventure">full interview</a>&nbsp;with Barlog on the development of God of War.</span></p> <p><span><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CJ_GCPaKywg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></span></p> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 15:30:00 PDT John Keefer Everything Microsoft Announced at E3 2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100394/everything-microsoft-announced-at-e3-2017 http://www.shacknews.com/article/100394/everything-microsoft-announced-at-e3-2017 <p>Microsoft's E3 presentation had everything: a new console, a gaggle of new announcements, an indie highlight real, and an <em>actual Porsche</em>. It was a wild media showcase. Here are all the highlights from the conference in case you missed them.</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100238/e3-2017-everything-we-know-about-xbox-one-x">Microsoft Debuts the Xbox One X</a></h2> <p>The conference was first and foremost a coming out party for the company's next big piece of hardware, the <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100238/e3-2017-everything-we-know-about-xbox-one-x">Xbox One X</a>. The powerhouse machine touts itself as the most powerful console ever, and a very direct answer to the suspicion that the company is getting out of the hardware business. (<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100321/e3-2017-microsoft-says-were-not-getting-out-of-the-console-business">It isn't</a>.)</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/-856OLagVF0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100218/e3-2017-microsoft-details-forza-motorsport-7-for-xbox-one-x">Forza Motorsport 7 is Awfully Pretty on Xbox One X</a></h2> <p>And to show off all that hardware power, Microsoft rolled out the heavy hitters. Turn 10 Studios has a way of squeezing every last drop of power out of Xbox hardware, so Forza Motorsport 7 made a very nice showcase game for it. We also had Dan Greenawalt by our booth to talk all about it.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/dQmqKQi7ksk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100219/e3-2017-metro-exodus-announced-from-4a-games">Metro Exodus Takes the Series Open World</a></h2> <p>In a primo spot for third-party promotion, Metro Exodus showed the FPS franchise escaping the underground and exploring an open world, quite literally. That and some creative ways to take down monstrous beasts made this one to remember.</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100222/e3-2017-the-darwin-project-announced">The Darwin Project Announced (With Shoutcasting)</a></h2> <p>New game The Darwin Project looked like a competitive survival game, but mostly we remember this debut for its somewhat awkward shoutcasting presentation. It seems they're priming this to become an esport, which tends to have mixed results.</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100221/e3-2017-playerunknowns-battlegrounds-an-xbox-one-console-exclusive">Battlegrounds Coming to Xbox</a></h2> <p>Meanwhile the other competitive survival game, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (or PUBG as the cool kids call it) is making its journey to console with an Xbox One version. Soon you'll be able to throw down and cower in fear on your console.</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100226/e3-2017-sea-of-thieves-coming-in-early-2018">Arr! Sea of Thieves Be Pushed Back Me Hearties!</a></h2> <p>Sea of Thieves made a splash at last year's E3, and this time Rare's next game got even more screen time with an extended bit of footage detailing a treasure hunt. It was pushed back to early 2018, but this time the presentation made a much better case for exploring the salty seas with your friends.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/AaU7kAZFmWo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100227/e3-2017-super-luckys-tale-debuts-at-xbox-conference">Super Lucky's Tale is Adorbs</a></h2> <p>One surprise from the show came in the form of a sequel to the VR hit Lucky's Tale. Now Super Lucky's Tale takes it out of the VR exclusive realm and onto Xbox One with a fresh new adventure. It's also ridiculously cute and colorful, and a nice reminder that the 3D platformer genre is only dormant because we allow it to be. More like&nbsp;this please!</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ktb82KP_8Gc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100230/e3-2017-ori-and-the-will-of-the-wisps-announced">Ori and the Will of the Wisps Breaks Hearts</a></h2> <p>Ori and the Blind Forest was a personal favorite in 2015, and now Moon Studios&nbsp;is back with a follow-up, Ori and the Wil of the Wisps. It went by without a release date, but the Metroidvania-meets-Meatboy action with a bittersweet story wrapped around it is definitely one we're looking forward to.</p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100228/e3-2017-interstellar-adventure-tacoma-saddled-with-a-release-date">Tacoma Finally Has a Release Date</a></h2> <p>Tacoma, the long-awaited follow-up to Gone Home, has finally pegged down a release date. We also sat down with Steve Gaynor, half of the creative leadership behind the game, to talk about its narrative hooks and the partnership with ID@Xbox.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/titP2UKmm98" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2><a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/100234/e3-2017-middle-earth-shadow-of-war-coming-october-10">Middle-earth: Shadow of War Showcases Orcs with Personality</a></h2> <p>We also got an extended look at Shadow of War. This one looks to pack all of the former's gameplay hooks along with some new keep conquests, but the view from the Xbox presentation was more about orcs. Orcs so cray! They showed off some colorful personalities and accents.</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/BThjH7CMT4k" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 14:30:00 PDT Steve Watts Steam Summer Sale Launch Possibly Outed By PayPal http://www.shacknews.com/article/100397/steam-summer-sale-launch-possibly-outed-by-paypal http://www.shacknews.com/article/100397/steam-summer-sale-launch-possibly-outed-by-paypal <p>The Steam Summer Sale is a big deal each year, revealing some tremendous saving on popular games for players, which likely generating a ton of <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/90230/steam-summer-sale-racks-up-over-200m-ark-survival-evolved-picks-up-over-11m">extra revenue for Valve and developers</a>&nbsp;in sales that wouldn't normally happen. This year's sale has yet to be officially announced, but a PayPal tweet may have stolen some launch thunder from Valve.</p> <p>The <a href="https://twitter.com/PayPalUK/status/877209458643845120" target="_blank">UK Paypal Twitter account revealed</a>&nbsp;that the sale is scheduled to start on June 22 at 6 p.m. British Standard Time, which equates to 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET. The tweet also revealed a discount for PayPal users, which could equate to about $5 if the UK discount gets applied in the States. A reddit user<a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/Steam/comments/6aec94/steam_summer_sale_2017_date/" target="_blank"> leaked a similar date</a> last month from the Steamworks developers group.</p> <p>This isn't the first time Valve has had someone out them ahead of schedule. The Autumn and Winter sales last year&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97564/steam-autumn-and-winter-sale-2016-dates-leaked">leaked early</a>, and were later <a href="http://www.shacknews.com/article/97928/the-steam-winter-sale-begins-on-december-22">confirmed through various sources</a>&nbsp;prior to the event.</p> <p>If you need any inspiration at all for this year's sale, draw it from this rather awesome fan-made video from last year,</p> <p><iframe width="700" height="394" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/QJW_ML5aE9E" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 14:25:00 PDT John Keefer
Slashdot: News for Nerds, Stuff that Matters
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BBC Technical Glitch Leaves TV Presenter In Silence
Fireball Browser Hijack Impact Revised After Microsoft Analysis
Chrome and Firefox Headless Modes May Spur New Adware &amp; Clickfraud Tactics
Tesla Is Talking To the Music Labels About Creating Its Own Streaming Service
Facebook Has a New Mission: Bring the World Closer Together
Stephen Hawking Says He Is Convinced That Humans Need To Leave Earth
Fallen Tech Star Imagination Technologies Up For Sale After Apple Row Bites
University of Missouri To Use Open Source And Other Cheaper Alternatives For General Education Textbook
'Coal King' Is Suing John Oliver, Time Warner, and HBO
AMD Looks To 'Crush' Intel's Xeon With New Epyc Server Chips
With Her Blog Post About Toxic Bro-Culture at Uber, Susan Fowler Proved That One Person Can Make a Difference
Trolan's LJ
Oh yeah
Pointless entry to signify life
Communications Update; Part Deux
Communications Update
CCNP... completed
Things you overhear...