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Valve fix Team Fortress 2's most powerful exploit: items_game.txt

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Team Fortress 2: Saxxploitation

items_games.txt is the bank vault of Team Fortress 2 files - the place where the names, stats and limitations of the hats and weapons in one of the best PC first-person shooters are stored. It was cracked months ago by users on the TF2 subreddit, and Valve have patched up resulting exploits as they’ve emerged. But it's only with this week’s update that the dev team finally appear to have plugged the source of the problem.

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Blizzard will feed Heroes of the Storm thousands of new players over the next month

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Heroes of the Storm

The Heroes of the Storm technical alpha is getting set to expand slightly. It hungers for fresh meat, its appetite not quite sated. It’s grisly maw is opening up, preparing to inhale and swallow up more heroes, pitting them against each other in the Nexus. 

Blizzard’s offering up two ways for you to get in line to be swallowed up, one that you can do on your own, and the other by begging and whining at a chum who is already in the alpha. 

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Dreadnought's 10-ship battles are big, messy firework displays

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Dreadnought

Ginormous capital ships laying into each other with nukes, lasers and devastating broadside attacks is my idea of heaven, a loud, terrifying heaven. It was also Spec Ops: The Line developer Yager’s idea for a game: Dreadnought. After being announced at E3, the studio is now showing off some of the multiplayer clashes. 

Take a gander at the video below to see two teams of five, all commanding capital ships, blasting each other out of the atmosphere.

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Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault is the single-player campaign you've been waiting for

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Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault

A relentless barrage of mortar strikes rain down on our position. Charging through the pitted, smoke-filled town square means running right into a fierce German tank. My allies in the north shout down the radio - they need help, they need artillery support, but all our artillery has been destroyed by the Germans. We have to charge now. Even if it’s suicidal, we have to push forward. 

This is my third attempt at Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault’s Houffalize mission. It is nothing like the other two. My primary goal and the environment is the same, but everything else is different. This is Relic’s World War 2 strategy game at its most dynamic and most surprising, and even as my men die in collapsing buildings and behind blown up cover, I’m hooked. 

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Steam

Steam's got 10 free games waiting to swallow up your weekend

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Steam free weekend

If you are planning a weekend in, trapped in your home with nothing to do, only the glow of your PC monitor to keep you company, then Steam might have you covered. Covered in free games

From now until 1pm PST on Sunday, 10 games in Steam’s gargantuan library are completely free. If you want to play them afterwards, though, you’ll need to dip into your wallet.

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Make conversation, not war: Galactic Civilizations III gets diplomacy

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Galactic Civilizations III diplomacy

Galactic Civilizations III receives a meaty beta update today, giving space rulers options beyond blowing up other species into space dust. Now they can have lots of lovely chats, create treaties, link empires together in a web of trade routes or simply just insult their alien counterparts as a precursor to war. I had a chat with lead designer Paul Boyer to get the skinny on the update. 

“The first thing you’ll notice is that almost everything that was in GalCiv 2 is in now,” Boyer told me earlier this week. “You can now trade ships and planets, and make treaties and trade techs.”

But returning Galactic Civilizations II features don’t make up the entirety of this update. 

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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.

Stoic considered kickstarting legal fees for use of ‘Saga’

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Stoic The Banner Saga King

In early 2014 Stoic, the developers of The Banner Saga, got caught up in a legal dispute with King, the developers of Candy Crush, or, to give it its full name, Candy Crush Saga, over the word ‘saga’.

King tried to block Stoic from trademarking The Banner Saga. To fight King would take a hefty amount of legal counsel and the money to buy that counsel, so Stoic looked to Kickstarter.

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Warner Brothers to lay off Turbine staff for “strategic alignment of our company”

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turbine warner brothers layoff

Despite the news that Warner Brothers expects to make $1.5 billion from games next year, the publisher has announced it’s plans to layoff a portion of developer Turbine’s staff. Turbine, who make Lord of the Rings: Online and Warner’s DC moba Infinite Crisis are being cut down in order for [Warner Brothers] to invest in growth areas at Turbine.”

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Kerbal Space Program beta starts after next update

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kerbal space program beta update

“The next update will mark a big milestone for us at Squad, as it is the last update focused on Career Mode,” developer Squad write. “After the next release, Kerbal Space Program will reach an internal milestone we call ‘Scope Complete’.”

This doesn’t spell the end of Kerbal Space Program, instead we’re about to see the start of the game’s beta. Squad say that with all the systems in place the team can finally get to work on adding content. Lots, and lots of content.

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Wasteland 2 patch stops monks surviving their own suicide bombs

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wasteland 2 patch suicide monk inxile

It must be embarrassing to survive your own suicide bomb. I mean, the one person it’s specifically meant to kill is the bomber, anyone else is an unfortunate bystander outside the definition of the device.

Well, Wasteland 2’s suicide monks had, on occasion, had just such an embarrassment. Before the latest patch the monks would explode after a critical hit but not taking any damage. This would “result in the enemy exploding in a giant explosion but still being alive.”

There’s much, much more that’s been fixed in the patch. Heck, the notes run to more than 4,300 words long.

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Lego games sales have made $2bn for Warner Brothers

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lego games sales warner brothers

The Lego games have made a stupendous amount of money for publisher Warner Brothers. Across the series more than 100 million copies have been sold, adding up to $2 billion in revenue.

The news came from CEO Kevin Tsujihara’s shareholder call, he revealed these figures as well as detailing his plan for Warner Brothers’ games next year.

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Anita Sarkeesian

Anita Sarkeesian cancels Utah State University talk after violent threats

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Anita Sarkeesian

The crusade against women who have opinions about video games continues unabated, reaching new heights of lunacy. Anita Sarkeesian, who runs Feminist Frequency’s Tropes vs Women in Video Games, was meant to be hosting a talk at the Utah State University, but has had to cancel the event due to violent threats made against her and those attending her talk.

One particular email was sent to USU staff in regards to the talk. “A number of personnel at Utah State University received an email regarding the scheduled presentation by Anita Sarkeesian tomorrow, October 15, 2014, at USU's Taggart Student Center. The email contained threats to Sarkeesian and those who attend her presentation.” 

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The Crew

The Crew trailer shows off the in-game Kwik Fit

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The Crew trailer

Ubisoft’s upcoming open-world racer The Crew has put a lot of focus on the streets and highways of its interstate playground, but thankfully it hasn’t forgotten what’s at the centre of the experience: cars. The latest trailer for the game puts a series of petrol-guzzling beats in the spotlight, and shows exactly what you can do to them should you wish to spend a few bob on doin’ ‘em up. 

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Spotlight
?

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.

World of Warcraft's handsome new character models in action

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The pre-Warlords of Draenor patch hit World of Warcraft today, bringing with it new dungeons, graphics options and big changes to classes and races. But one of the most immediately noticeable changes is to the character models. 

I jumped in after a wee break to take a gander at how lovely everybody looks. Join me. 

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Here's what's coming in EVE Online's Phoebe expansion, and beyond

EVE Online

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Playing With Myself: Legend of Grimrock 2

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Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault is the single-player campaign you've been waiting for

Company of Heroes 2 - Ardennes Assault

Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault is the single-player campaign you've been waiting for

Make conversation, not war: Galactic Civilizations III gets diplomacy

Galactic Civilizations® III

Make conversation, not war: Galactic Civilizations III gets diplomacy

World of Warcraft's handsome new character models in action

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor

World of Warcraft's handsome new character models in action

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Assassin's Creed Unity

"Cinematic experience" is a nonsense term and isn't achieved by frame rates

Playing With Myself: Sid Meier's Covert Action

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Nvidia's plans to become a

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We've got 50 codes for Anno Online starter packs that'll make privateers of you

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Wild Cards: what does the future hold for Hearthstone's fresh pros?

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

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Total War: Rome II - One Year On

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Elite: Dangerous

"Every star in the night sky exists in Elite: Dangerous" — Braben on recreating a galaxy all over again

Playing With Myself: Alien: Isolation

Alien: Isolation

Playing With Myself: Alien: Isolation

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare's new multiplayer mode is basketball with jetpacks

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare's new multiplayer mode is basketball with jetpacks

We've got 50 starter packs for Might & Magic Heroes Online. Want one?

Might & Magic Heroes Online

We've got 50 starter packs for Might & Magic Heroes Online. Want one?

The uneasy brilliance of This War of Mine

This War of Mine

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Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor - Meet my nemesis: Grublik the Black

Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

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Alien: Isolation review

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Hands-on with The Crew

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Hands-on with The Crew

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Windows 9 is no more. Windows 10 is now a thing

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How Train Fever made money for its most feverish players

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Port Inspection: Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor

Middle-earth™: Shadow of Mordor™

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Armored Warfare: why is Obsidian making a F2P tank game?

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ArcheAge review

ArcheAge

ArcheAge review