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Why X-COM creator Julian Gollop left handheld gaming behind and came back to the PC

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The XCOM reboot from Firaxis changed the landscape of turn-based strategy on the PC, says Gollop - but there is more to the story.

Before the (hopefully) imminently Kickstarted Chaos Reborn, X-Com creator Julian Gollop hadn’t made a PC game in over a decade. As an independent developer and as a producer at Ubisoft Sofia, he’d made games mainly for Nintendo handhelds - the platforms which for some time he considered the “last refuge” of turn-based strategy.

But now he’s back, building a PC-first tactics game. Something - a couple of things, actually - changed his mind.

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Anti-insurgent detergent: Soap MacTavish to return in Call of Duty: Ghosts, somehow

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Remember that scene in Modern Warfare 2 when Soap pouted everybody to death? Brutal.

The improbably named Soap, lesser known as John, MacTavish was the protagonist of the Modern Warfare series - when the protagonist wasn’t some poor blighter about to be shot in the head in first-person so we could all share a big gasp.

He was forcibly retired at the close of the trilogy - but creators Infinity Ward have hinted at his return to active doody in upcoming DLC for Call of Duty: Ghosts.

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Article submitted by gahhhrrrlic

The Best PC Games of All Time

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A list of 15 spectacular PC games that have left a lasting impressions on gamers for being immersive, story-driven, engaging, replayable and just plain fun!

The Elder Scrolls Online fansite creates a trading system because ZeniMax Online won't

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The Elder Scrolls Online has no auction house so a fansite made one

ZeniMax Online decided not to create an auction house or any serious trading system into The Elder Scrolls Online. I’d say commerce in TESO is very Dark Ages, but the early medieval era actually had markets, traders and some form of organisation. 

So it’s come down to players creating a system. A marketplace that doesn’t exist in-game, but in the TESO Elite fansite, devised by players. The official TESO Twitter account has endorsed the system, probably so the developers can get back to squashing all the bugs that have been plaguing the game since launch. It's an odd endorsement, though, as ZeniMax previously defended its no auction house stance by saying such things ruin game economies and trivialise getting good gear.

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Get your nanomachine fix while you still can: Crysis and Crysis 2 multiplayer shutting down

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Crysis and Crysis 2 losing multiplayer

If you still dabble in the occasional spot of Crysis and Crysis 2 multiplayer, you only have until May 31st to get all of your kicks. Both games will lose online functionality when GameSpy officially shuts down at the end of next month. 

Some developers and publishers are seeking alternatives; some by migrating to Steam, others by creating their own online support. This will not be the case with Crysis and Crysis 2.

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Oculus Rift officially a big deal: David Attenborough's making a nature documentary for it

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David Attenborough making a documentary for Oculus Rift

There are a lot of animals I don’t care about. For instance, I couldn’t give two hoots about ants. Or lemurs. But show me some footage of them with David Attenborough’s soothing but authoritative voice narrating their antics, and I’m suddenly hooked. 

The nature boffin and documentary maker’s latest project, Conquest of the Skies, is being filmed for the Oculus Rift. Viewers will be able to witness panoramic scenes from the jungles of Borneo, filmed using a special 360° camera setup that utilises eight different cameras. 

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Civilization goes Beyond Earth, but not back to Alpha Centauri

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Civilization: Beyond Earth interview

Civilization: Beyond Earth is the first Civilization game to focus on humanity’s expansion into the stars, but it stands very much in the shadow of Firaxis legendary sci-fi 4X, Alpha Centauri. While superficially similar to Civilization II, Alpha Centauri had its own identity and inspired a generation of passionate fans. So my first question for Civilization: Beyond Earth designers David McDonough and Anton Strenger was the obvious one. How much of its inspiration would Beyond Earth take from Alpha Centauri?

The answer might disappoint players who have spent years revisiting Planet via backwards-compatibility fixes and the Good Old Games edition of Alpha Centauri. There’s a lot more than licensing issues dividing Civilization: Beyond Earth from Firaxis’ first trip to the stars. The truth is that Alpha Centauri is a work of dystopian sci-fi, while Beyond Earth is a continuation of the fundamentally optimistic Civilization series.

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Subnautica screenshots rise up out of the depths

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Subnautica screenshots

I went snorkeling once, in Australia. I was scared I’d be eaten by a shark, but that fear soon revealed itself to be silly when compared to the real dangers of the sea. When I surfaced and swam back to our gently bobbing platform, I watched as a man tried to stem the blood pouring out of his leg. He’d brushed up against the reef and now had a big hole where flesh should be. 

So it is with nervous, almost fearful anticipation that Iap up these Subnautica screenshots. Unknown World’s new game - in a new genre, they say - is all about exploring alien, underwater realms. They are places to build in, navigate through and encounter life within. They are also strikingly pretty. 

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World of Darkness MMO gets a stake driven through its heart

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World of Darkness cancelled

Put away your bloodsucking dentures, because as of today, CCP’s World of Darkness MMO is no more. CCP’s Atlanta studio has been hit hard by the cancellation, with 56 employees losing their jobs. Some have been offered positions in other parts of the company, while the remaining staff will focus on developing games in the EVE universe.

“The decision to end the World of Darkness MMO project is one of the hardest I’ve ever had to make,” said CCP CEO Hilmar Veigar Pétursson. “I have always loved and valued the idea of a sandbox experience set in that universe, and over the years I’ve watched the team passionately strive to make that possible.”

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Our Spotlight units plug content our journalists have made, that our advertisers want to promote. Sometimes the promotion is paid for, but the content they go to is always independent with no client oversight or approval.

Article submitted by mundox

Tecmo-Koei is asking if their social media followers are PC Gamers

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What the tittle says.

Open season: Sir, You Are Being Hunted hits v1.0 on May 1st

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Sir, You Are Being Hunted hits v1.0 on May 1st

Procedurally-generated stealth and survival romp, Sir, You Are Being Hunted is getting close to a major milestone: v1.0. Come May 1st, the game will escape the shackles of the 0.Xs, and that’s not far away at all. 

Just a dash over two weeks, and you’ll be able to sneak around moors, industrial towns and woods while being hunted by gentlemen robots and metallic poachers. Of course, you could be doing that right now, as it’s been in Early Access for a while.

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A cheeky bug has been building invisible walls in Battlefield 4 - and we've only just noticed

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The death shield bug has been blocking even the most formidable Battlefield 4 projectiles - including helicopter fire.

Fleshy men repelling rockets; bullets dissolving on contact with oxygen; grenades bouncing off patches of thin air. These are just some of the unexplained phenomena that have been confusing Battlefield 4 players.

In a game that began life riddled with bugs, their cause has been left undiscovered. But Youtuber Jack Frags might have just uncovered the culprit - the newly-named ‘Death Shield’ bug.

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Article submitted by TheIndieMine

Popup Dungeon Preview

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Triple.B.Titles is running a Kickstarter campaign in order to gain funding for their new roguelike PC game, Popup Dungeon.

Here's Watch Dogs running on an Ultra spec PC - and the hardware you'll need to do the same

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Every city has a price: future Chicago accepted constant surveillance in exchange for prettier trains.

Watch Dogs’ most recent trailer was recorded on a rig rocking an Intel Core i7-3930K and a GeForce Titan. It could hardly be more unattainable if the GPU was cooled using a steady supply of dragon’s blood, or if its disc drive read DVDs via a diamond needle.

You needn’t own the most powerful graphics card in existence to run Watch Dogs on ‘Ultra’, though - merely something in that ballpark.

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League of Legends pro fined over "one of the highest harassment scores" in LCS history

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The somewhat unfittingly named FORG1VEN, AD Carry of the Copenhagen Wolves.

To his fans, he is FORG1VEN -  AD carry for the Copenhagen Wolves and habitual flamer of solo queue games in League of Legends. To Riot Games’ player behaviour tribunal, he is Konstantinos Tzortziou - a bad example to the community, guilty of multiple violations of the LCS ruleset.

Riot have fined Tzortziou $1000, after a number of official warnings failed to lower one of the highest harassment scores in professional LoL.

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Half-Life speedrun record smashed, video evidence is nauseating

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The original Half-Life game has been the running track for many speed runners over the years, with the usually 15-20 hour story being blitzed through in less than an hour. But now the fastest players alive have thrown down a new gauntlet and broken the existing speedrun record. 

Their new time: 20 minutes and 41 seconds. That’s nine minutes faster than the previous record. Nine. 

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The Elder Scrolls Online review in progress

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The Elder Scrolls Online

Welcome to my review in progress for The Elder Scrolls Online. For the next couple of weeks I’ll be writing down my initial impressions, adventures, and other happenings, so be sure to check back regularly for my latest thoughts. Then, after I’ve reached the level cap and experienced a plethora of end game content, I’ll give you my final verdict.

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Caffeine is a beautiful thing, both in your cup and on your screen

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Caffeine

There’s nothing scary about a cup of coffee, right? Nope, don’t worry about that cup of joe sitting there, it’s not going to strike out at you. But coffee’s most prominent property, caffeine, is at the centre of a new indie sci-fi horror. Quite what caffeine actually has to do with Caffeine is unclear, but what is obvious is that this is a strikingly beautiful project, all rendered in Unreal 4. 

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Spotlight

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Our Spotlight units plug content our journalists have made, that our advertisers want to promote. Sometimes the promotion is paid for, but the content they go to is always independent with no client oversight or approval.

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Civilization goes Beyond Earth, but not back to Alpha Centauri

Elder Scrolls

The Elder Scrolls Online review in progress

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The Wolf Among Us: A Crooked Mile PC review

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Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel goes to the moon, lets you play as Claptrap

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Halo: Spartan Assault PC review

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The PCGamesN Podcast: Episode 4 - now with added tanks

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Betrayer review

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Hands on with Child of Light

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We've got 500 keys to 500 tanks in War Thunder's Ground Forces beta. Want one?

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Building blocks — LEGO Minifigures Online

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Death in Candlewood is a Poe-inspired first-person shooter and twisted romance

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Goat Simulator review

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The Joy of Hex: a truly brilliant computer CCG

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We captured our American for episode 3 of the PCGamesN Podcast

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Review: BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea - Part Two

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UNPRECEDENTED APRIL NEWS BLOWOUT: Blizzard Outcasts, Arma 3 Karts and World of Tanks: Crayfish announced

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Why Hollywood wants a piece of the Oculus VR action

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Age of Wonders 3 review

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Let’s make the Formula One of cheats

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The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot review

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Everquest Landmark closed beta review

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Diablo III: Reaper of Souls review

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Endless Legend shows Amplitude Studios building on lessons from Endless Space

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Four things Facebook will not do with Oculus Rift

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The best PC games of 2014 so far

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Why Oculus chose Facebook

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Breaking: Facebook plans to buy Oculus VR for $2 billion

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Blizzard on Diablo III's missing PvP: "There's probably not a week that goes by that we're not talking about it"

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TowerFall Ascension PC review

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Port Inspection - Deus Ex: The Fall

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Minecrafting 141: Islamic Architecture

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Fancy a copy of Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Collector's Edition? We can be of some assistance

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PCGamesN Podcast Episode 2

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Cake eaters: Assassin's Creed Unity will be set in Revolutionary France, Ubisoft confirms

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Intel: DirectX 12 is "the most significant leap in Windows Graphics in many years"

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Deus Ex: The Fall PC Review

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Heroes of the Storm: "a triumph"

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Wildstar PVP Battlegrounds hands on: Walatiki Temple

Guild Wars

Guild Wars 2 to get 40 new traits via first-ever features-only update on April 15

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Hard to believe: Unreal Engine 4 is available for a $19 per month subscription