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The day I realised always-on DRM moaners have a point

Thursday, 8 September 2011 07:23 GMT By Patrick Garratt

Ubisoft and Blizzard have angered many in the past year by insisting PC gamers maintain an internet connection during play, but I’d always been on the fence. Until this week.

I am going to bore you with the details.

I went to Sweden last week to see Battlefield 3 at DICE. On the way back, our flight was cancelled thanks to a fuel leak, and we had to sleep in a converted mental institution in Stockholm before heading to London the following day. This fucked my connection back to France, so I bought a new flight from Southampton for the morning after, travelled down to Brighton with Eurogamer’s Tom Bramwell and spent the night at my sister-in-law’s flat.

I’m talking to my wife on Skype that evening, and I can hear the thunder in the background.

“It’s a big one,” she says. We live on the Massif Central, and we get some hectic weather. Storms bring electrical failures. There’s a click and she vanishes, before calling my mobile to tell me the internet really does appear to be broken.

“No worries,” I say, assuming it’s just a case of turning it off and back on again. “I’ll sort it when I get home.”

Only I can’t. The data light on the router’s flashing piss-take red. I call Orange; so many people were hit by the storm in my department, I’m told, that I won’t see an engineer until Wednesday. This is Friday, so that means six days without any main connection at all.

I’m forced to concede that I judged the “always-on” moaners too harshly.

“No worries,” I say to myself, and turn my Android mobile into a wireless hotspot. It works. Twenty minutes later I get a text from SFR telling me I’ve exceeded my data limit for the month and I won’t be able to access the internet through my phone until Thursday.

“No worries,” I say the following day, and go to an SFR shop in Limoges, 50 miles away, to buy a French 3G stick. This all happens to plan – apart from the bit when the assistant clearly assumes I’m hitting on her with my terrible French – and I walk away with a mobile internet connection.

Except it doesn’t work. I am kind of worrying now. My wife spends half an hour on the phone to SFR before being told it’s going to be at least 24 hours before the new SIM’s activated.

And there we are. I’m offline. And when the stick does start to work it’s flakier than a corn flake factory’s bi-centennial fucking corn flake festival, and it can’t keep me connected for more than 15 minutes before doing the stupid red light thing.

The games bit
Aside from being a monumental pain in the ass from a business sense, I am now unable to play certain games, and I’m forced to concede that I judged the “always-on” moaners too harshly.

One of the hottest news topics in games in the past year has been that of some companies insisting PC gamers remain connected to the internet when playing single-player content.

Ubisoft has been the main culprit in gamers’ eyes with the requisite being central to its so far cack-handed efforts at PC DRM, but Blizzard recently came out of the closet with plans for Diablo III: you won’t be able to play the action-RPG at all unless you’re constantly online.

Capcom, too, has dabbled in the system, and id is now publicly a fan.

I have to be honest; I always roll my eyes when people kick up a stink about this stuff, mainly because, until this week, I had a reliable internet connection. I’m regularly being told that large swathes of the European and American gaming markets have flimsy lines with slow speeds, but I’m all right, Jack. I now know better.

It’s obvious that internet-specific games such as MMOs shouldn’t be obliged to provide offline play, but isn’t it clearly questionable to insist people are online to play a single-player game? Before last Saturday I didn’t care, but now I fully understand how infuriating it must be for those with shoddy connections to be forced to endure constant interruptions to play, or worse, to not be able to play at all.

Offline games are not online games.

Offline games are not online games. We have to assume that some people buy single-player games specifically because they don’t want to play online for whatever reason. The always-on demand is largely being foisted on the PC games market because of piracy – the same has rarely been asked of console games – but I cannot believe that Ubisoft, a company that has clearly invested a great deal of time and energy into creating a DRM system that’s as bulletproof as it can possibly make it, couldn’t come up with a suitably secure one-off registration check.

Blizzard demanded only a one-off registration for StarCraft II. It sold well, but it was heavily pirated. We all know the Ubisoft story with its always-on DRM: yes, it’s bound to curtail piracy, but at what cost?

Sales? They can be recouped. Gamers’ hearts and minds? Not so simple.

I’m writing this on Wednesday night. The engineer came today and said France Telecom will need to fix the main box outside my house for me to get back online. That might happen on Friday. Might not. For all the “might nots” in the gaming world, I can only hope that the increasing trend towards always-on DRM reverses sometime soon.

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39 Comments

  1. tenthousandgothsonacid

    Great post. I’ve not been paying attention, when did you move to France ?

    #1 4 years ago
  2. manamana

    Great post, indeed. Always on is a terrible thing, if you ever come across a downtime. Its like real life – everything is fine until you get toothaches.

    #2 4 years ago
  3. albo88

    lets face it who does not have internet contention this days lulz
    peoples have internet to write this stupid troll stuff and not to play games? fffuuu

    #3 4 years ago
  4. T_L_T

    I pirate Ubisoft games now, I used to buy them.

    #4 4 years ago
  5. alterecho

    I smiled every time you said “No, worries”.

    Glad you see our point :)

    Hopefully the publishers do too.

    #5 4 years ago
  6. Christopher Jack

    Does the DRM apply to Steam/GfWL/other versions?
    @Pat, It seems that you finally understand the fear of these cloud only services like OnLive, there are plenty of times you simply can’t use it, doubt you can with the internet stick you have right now too.
    @4, That’s still not a valid excuse to pirate.

    #6 4 years ago
  7. Patrick Garratt

    @3 – I’m connected on the stick now, but there’s no way I could play a game with always-on DRM. It constantly drops the line. To write this comment I had to reconnect because the connection crapped out.

    @1 – Thanks! We moved at the beginning of last year.

    #7 4 years ago
  8. FabioPal

    Agree with every single word you wrote Pat.

    I don’t know the numbers but, in my experience, I remember not buying a game because of DRM at least 3 times. And I’ve got a pretty reliable internet connection.

    They should realize that limiting the user only helps spreading the piracy.

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Gurdil

    Glad you get it Pat. I’m not one to bitch without a reason, always-on DRM ARE a problem and they’ll be an even bigger one if Europe does get this fraking BS “à la carte” internet policy… But that’s another problem.

    And on another note, that’s exactly why I left SFR. I took a Bouygues sub and my data use is now unlimited even if there’s a fair data use threshold after which the connection slows down.

    Edit: Plus always-on DRM does NOT prevent piracy. Remember Assassin’s Creed 2? Buyers had to pirate their games so they could play… Nice irony, huh?

    #9 4 years ago
  10. BULArmy

    Excelent article, but as of now dropping the always on DRM is not gonna happen. What is the number of ppl who experience such problems and bought such a game or are willing to buy it – 500, 1000, 5000. I think for the publishers this is pretty small number and thay are ready to loose this sales in order to stay on what they want.
    Of course here comes the ethical point, that pirates play such games after they are cracked problem-free, of course without MP most of the time, after most of the companies stopped putting LAN MP in their games, but the buyer is actually screwed. So now I want to save me from the trouble and I pirate game, except if I really want to play also the MP part of the game(D3 case).

    #10 4 years ago
  11. Blerk

    “it’s flakier than a corn flake factory’s bi-centennial fucking corn flake festival”

    glols!

    Hope it all gets sorted soon, Patrick. “No internet” gives me cold sweats.

    #11 4 years ago
  12. OwnedWhenStoned

    This happened to me last night, my normally teutonically efficient and reliable German cable connection fritzed. Admittedly for the first time in years, but still Steam wouldn’t let me play Civ 5… if anyone can tell me why Offline mode didn’t work, I’m all ears.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. roubignolo

    @Pat
    Tu aurais du aller chez NOZ en zone Nord à Limoges acheter un vrai stick 3G…
    Never thought you could live in France. Especially there…

    #13 4 years ago
  14. Gekidami

    Oddly storms sometimes knock out my internet, i dont quite get why seeing as its cable, but it happens often. Generally its gets fixed rather quickly, i’ve never gone for days without internet as a result of that, at least.

    But anyway;

    1. Play games on console.
    2. Dont deal with always on DRM.
    3. ????
    4. PROFIT!

    #14 4 years ago
  15. Chockster

    It was a converted mental institution.

    And for one night only, we converted it back.

    Oh, and Pat is completely right on this DRM business. I’m a convert to disliking it. In the past I defended the publishers’ right to use it to defend against piracy. Somewhere they crossed the line and became too draconinan – and the next gen consoles will now doubt have similar “features”.

    #15 4 years ago
  16. Ansob

    Could I suggest not calling them “moaners,” then?

    Oh, and would that conservatives of all stripes be similarly forced to experience what the people they spit on live with. :P

    #16 4 years ago
  17. jnms

    Nice piece Pat! Though I was about to say you’re a bit; “but I’m all right, Jack.” so glad you said it first!! :)

    #17 4 years ago
  18. T_L_T

    @6 The fact that the pirated product is superior to the legitimate one is a reason to pirate.

    #18 4 years ago
  19. Yoshi

    Awesome article. I’ve got Virgin Media and my god it can really fail sometimes, if I download anything during the day it’ll start a hissy fit and won’t let me use parts of the internet, browsers, online only games etc, even though it’ll let me start Steam.

    Even though Starcraft 2 was pirated so was Splinter Cell Conviction, Driver and many more Ubisoft games. Their DRM doesn’t work to stop pirating users so if that’s their reason to use it? Then they might as well stop.

    #19 4 years ago
  20. viralshag

    ^ I too have Virgin media but I have to say I find my time with them has been pretty decent. I’m on the 50mb connection and I can’t say that I have much time without the net due to them.

    My wireless router on the other hand… I don’t know why I haven’t binned the stupid thing yet.

    #20 4 years ago
  21. Yoshi

    ^ As long as I’m gentle and easy with her she seems to work alright but even if I attempt to download from a torrent (completely legit download of course) she begins to fire up the fail orders. But like I said it’s strange as I can use Steam, Steam friends, go on some online games but not others that are online all the time games.

    #21 4 years ago
  22. Old MacDonald

    I’m pretty much in the same boat. I don’t have a good internet connection, but it is always on and it’s not much of a problem. Unless… well, it is.

    Because since my house is right at the end of both the phone line and the electrical line, thunderstorms are always an issue. I am pretty much guaranteed that I will have a number of days every year where there is no internet connection (and that’s ignoring the fact that my provider sometimes have problems on their own).

    It’s easy to go “yeah, but you’ll be okay for most of the time”, but when you’re sitting there without internet for a week and every single game you’re hooked on is on Steam which demands to be online to be able to go offline, you’re screwed and it’s no fun.

    #22 4 years ago
  23. G1GAHURTZ

    @20 & 21:

    Cable broadband > Phone line. (I assume you have a phone line connection, Yoshi.)

    I had 50MB Virgin cable and it worked pretty much perfectly about 99.9% of the time.

    #23 4 years ago
  24. Dralen

    This post is exactly what has always been my greatest fear. That I’m somehow going to be stuck without the internet and I’m not going to be able to play games because of it.

    What the hell are we going to do when there is a zombie apocalypse and there are no Internet Service Providers around? :P

    #24 4 years ago
  25. drewbles82

    Some people may have awesome connections but like to keep a pc that isnt hooked up to the net so they can avoid all the crap that comes with the net like pop ups, virus, spyware etc.

    My business computer is not hooked up to the net, its purely just for photo/video editing.

    I refuse to buy any games that say i gotta be online all the time. Some people like to have pc games etc for those times they cant get on the net with their consoles.

    #25 4 years ago
  26. noherczeg

    All I can say is Torchlight II.

    Any questions?

    #26 4 years ago
  27. Freek

    Witcher 2 removed it’s DRM, still sold a metric fuckton, Torchlight 2, no always on DRM and has LAN play and only costs 20 dollars. Bound to sell allot.

    It simply doesn’t make sense to treat your legitimate customers as criminals, while at the same time the actual criminals play a cracked version anyway!

    #27 4 years ago
  28. Craymen Edge

    I was without internet for internet access for a whole 3 months (including the entire christmas holiday) last year when I moved my broadband from a legacy package to a new tarrif.

    Neither plusnet or BT could figure out what was wrong (or agree on who’s problem it was for that matter), and the only reason I got internet access back after 3 months was because I ended my custom with both companies and went with Cable instead.

    It was a massive pain, and is the reason I’m never going to support always on DRM in my single player games.

    #28 4 years ago
  29. Ireland Michael

    I’m going to admit this freely – I don’t pirate PC games themselves, but I regularly download hacks that allow me to remove the draconian DRM from the games that have this kind of crap on them.

    I bought the game. It is my property. If I’m playing single player, the publisher has no right to stop me. And the law seriously needs to step in regarding this kind of shit.

    #29 4 years ago
  30. DSB

    You know why they’re not gonna do that Michael.

    Publishers have cleverly spun a web where you don’t actually buy a game, you just buy a vessel that the game is on. You own the CD, you own the plastic cover, you own the cheaply printed pamphlet. Fascistsoftivision Arts owns the game, and I’m pretty sure there’s a clause in the EULA where it says they can knock down your door and take it away.

    It’s evil and wrong and all kinds of fucked up.

    I’m pretty sure the kind of realization that happened to PatGar up yonder will happen to most people once they have to face the offline Steam in the event of some kind of internet disaster. It’s painful bloody Hell.

    I’m pretty sure most people who love fascist publishers have run into DRM issues as well, it’s just chíc to bow to your overlord when we’re whining about ‘em all the time.

    @Pat Why don’t you do a story about Ubisoft losing half their earnings in two years on the PC? They essentially lost 40% of their business on the PC after introducing Ubisoft Online Services Platform.

    http://www.ubisoftgroup.com/index.php?p=164

    Seems pretty relevant to me. It’s just that people haven’t bothered to check.

    #30 4 years ago
  31. Yoshi

    @23 I’ve got a 10mb fibre connection

    #31 4 years ago
  32. OlderGamer

    Great write up. I would like to see a lot more attention given to this and other things that are common practice in the games industry that are just plan wrong.

    Personaly I have great internet. Its down less then 3times a year and even then only for a couple of hours at most. But I live in the rual areas where many people don’t have any internet, or very poor connections.

    #32 4 years ago
  33. ruckus

    If it’s DRM’d to hell and back then I have no interest in a game.
    I’m certainly not going to waste my time downloading it and committing the Serious Crime* of copyright infringement.

    If it hits the bargain bins and there’s a load of no dvd cracks for it, then I might still consider buying it and thus playing it.

    *Serious Crimes Act 2007 – such as counterfeiting, fraud, prostitution, money laundering, blackmail and copyright infringement /lobbying at work me thinks

    #33 4 years ago
  34. OlderGamer

    Aren’t DRM cracks(and no DVD cracks etc) also infringments on copyright laws?

    #34 4 years ago
  35. DSB

    @34 You just imploded the skulls of 50 different lawyers by asking that question.

    Depending on the trial, yes and no.

    In Norway you’ll probably win, in the US you’re dead on arrival.

    Obviously any company is free to write and claim and reserve whatever they want on their EULAs, but if they infringe upon other peoples rights, then it’s always going to be invalid. It’s not just a question of constitutional law, but also a question of how it’s enterpreted.

    Head implosion territory.

    #35 4 years ago
  36. Crab of Thunder

    Just to add something to all the reasons for not liking the always on scheme. Some people don’t have an unlimited broadband package, unlikely to be anyone here because we play games a lot. But there are cheaper packages for people who only browse lightly or whatever, so then they only get so many GB’s usage a month and having a need to be online to play would eat that up fast and exceeding it of course means you get charged.

    #36 4 years ago
  37. ruckus

    Surely they’d attack you using the DMCA in the US?_?
    Anyhoo – by using this crap (DRM) they are in fact disconnecting with some of their potential customers completely. Not all will ‘pirate’ it and thus they chance never having that customer return.

    That customer… WAS ME! XD /sorry

    #37 4 years ago
  38. Strange Sultan

    You are right!! i love to play games alone. sometimes yes, i enjoy playing online. but i’ve never bought a game to play it online.

    #38 4 years ago
  39. Ansob

    @14: you do realise that consoles are DRM, right? The publishers get to control what you see and how you see it.

    Oh, and enjoy paying £10-£15 more per game, by the way!

    #39 4 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    We have 400 Lann Revamp codes worth €25 to giveaway for free to VG247 readers. All you need to do is enter your details in the box below and you’ll be given a code to redeem in game. The codes are for warrior character Lann and offer a 7 day unlimited Inner Armour pass, battle […]

  • US eShop update: Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars, OlliOlli, more

    Nintendo has updated the North American end of the eShop with Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars, OlliOlli and a demo version of Azure Striker GUNVOL. Your full update is below. eShop Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars – Wii U, 3DS – Cross Buy OlliOlli – Wii U, 3DS – Cross-Buy Proun+ – Proun+ […]

  • Rock Band 4 confirmed for Xbox One and PS4: supports old instruments and 2,168 songs

    Harmonix has lifted the lid on the long-rumoured Rock Band 4, stating it will support 2,168 previously released tracks and last-gen instruments on PS4 and Xbox One. The game will be out this year. Harmonix has yet to reveal specific features for the game, but it has been built with a completely new engine. As […]

  • First run of Rodea the Sky Soldier copies on Wii U come with Wii version

    The first print run of Rodea the Sky Soldier on Wii U will come with the Wii version packed in, NIS America has confirmed. The publisher confirmed today in a press release that anyone who buys the first run of the retail version of Rodea the Sky Soldier on Wii U will find the Wii […]

  • Unreal Tournament 4 lets modders sell cosmetic items to players

    Unreal Tournament 4 is a game built with the help of the modding community. So it’s only natural that it will feature a marketplace where all cosmetic items can be sold. Epic Games has confirmed that it will allow modders from the community to sell the cosmetics items they’ve created on the game’s marketplace. The […]

  • D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die is coming to PC – rumour

    SWERY 65 has shown off D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die running on PC at GDC this week, teasing that a possible port may be on the way. D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die is SWERY 65′s latest project. An episodic detective affair, D4 came out on Xbox One last September and utilised Kinect as its main […]

  • Valve’s Lighthouse, VR controllers and more explained

    Valve’s less-talked about prototype VR controllers and its Lighthouse technology have been shown in more detail. When HTC announced Vive, the VR headset it’s working on with Valve, it mentioned “base stations” and ergonomic controllers. Now we know what they meant by that. The controllers are still in prototype phase, and will look better when […]

  • Listen to two professional Counter-Strike players explain why Dust2 is so popular

    Hear what makes iconic Counter-Strike map Dust2 one of the most popular maps in shooter history from two former eSports players. Sal “Volcano” Garozzo and Shawn “FMPONE” Snelling are both retired professional Counter-Strike players who are currently working as designers. At GDC this year, the pair hosted a panel titled “Community Level Design for Competitive […]

  • Core Morpheus hardware locked in, no plans for wireless version

    Sony has finalised the core hardware for its VR headset Project Morpheus, and does not currently plan on releasing a wireless version. SCE Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida spoke to Gamespot at GDC and confirmed that the core hardware of Morpheus is “pretty much done” but that “lots of tweaks and improvements” are still being […]

  • Watch the full Phil Spencer keynote from GDC 2015

    The full GDC 2015 keynote of Xbox boss Phil Spencer is now available to watch. In case you missed last nights’s Phil Spencer keynote at GDC 2015, the whole thing has been made available to watch on YouTube. The address is titled “The Future of Gaming Across the Microsoft Ecosytem,” and it’s where Spencer announced […]

  • Elite: Dangerous won’t be “dumbed down” for Xbox One

    The Xbox One version of Elite: Dangerous will in fact be the same as the PC one. Elite: Dangerous developer Frontier came out on stage last night at GDC to announce the game making its console debut on Xbox One. Some have feared that the port would not provide the same experience as the PC […]

  • Virtual reality: by gum, it’s really happening

    Virtual reality has exited the realm of peripheral gimmick and turned into something that just might go mainstream. VR has an uphill battle ahead of it. The tech is going to be expensive, and there are a number of problems that need to be solved before it could be considered an inclusive technology (motion sickness, […]

  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor takes Game of the Year at GDC Awards 2015

    And the winner is: Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor beat out Alien: Isolation, Bayonetta 2, Destiny, and Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft to win Game of the Year at the Game Developer’s Choice Awards 2015. Elsewhere in the awards, Ustwo’s mobile hit Monument Valley was a stand-out favourite, with wins in the Innovation, […]

  • Alien: Isolation was prototyped in third-person – video

    Alien: Isolation is one of the most effectively scary triple-A games in years, but it didn’t start off a perfect creation of pure terror. Creative Assembly prototyped Alien: Isolation in third-person perspective before they nailed down the final approach. The developer revealed this during a GDC 2015 presentation, and it’s a good reminder that games […]

  • Madden 15 added to EA Vault

    Madden 15 is now included in EA’s all-you-can-eat subscriber service. Madden 15 is the ninth game to be added to the EA Vault, a stash of games available on demand for EA Access subscribers. It's still Madden Season for EA Access members – Madden NFL 15 is now in The Vault for all members. Go […]

  • Source Engine 2 doesn’t have hidden costs or royalties – but is Steam exclusive

    Three major engines went free at GDC 2015, and each of them is monetising in a different way. There’s been a heck of a lot of discussion about development tools and the costs associated with them during GDC 2015. First Epic announced that Unreal Engine 4 would be free, bar royalities on successful releases. Then […]

  • Final Fantasy creator hates sequels

    Final Fantasy, a byword in prolific franchises, was created by a man who hates sequel. Final Fantasy games are famous for being reinvented with each core release, and it was not until series creator Hironobu Sakaguchi began to withdraw from the franchise after Final Fantasy 9 that we started seeing regular sequels and spin-offs. Speaking […]

  • Guardian complaints led to the closure of Destiny’s Loot Cave

    Destiny players are to blame for the shuttering of the much loved Loot Cave. Early in Destiny‘s history, many players got hugely excited about the “Loot Cave”. Accessible shortly after starting the game for the first time, this high-volume spawn point allowed players to stand in one place, taking out waves and waves of low-level […]

  • Xbox and PC games boss Phil Harrison to leave Microsoft – rumour

    Microsoft Interactive Entertainment Business VP and EMEA head of games Phil Harrison is rumoured to have thrown in the towel. Microsoft has not issued a statement on Harrison’s alleged departure, despite repeated questioning by press at GDC 2015. Instead, word comes via multiple sources speaking to GamesIndustry at the show. According to the rumours, Harrison […]

  • Metal Gear Online commentated trailer explains stuffed dog – but not invisibility

    Metal Gear Online developer Kojima Productions has provided significantly more insight into how the multiplayer side of The Phantom Pain works. Metal Gear Online is the online multiplayer component of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain. Konami hasn’t shared a great deal about it yet, but we did see a very cool Metal Gear […]

  • Elite: Dangerous Xbox One trailer shows off space MMO

    If Elite: Dangerous looks this good on Xbox One we have nothing to complain about. Microsoft revealed Elite: Dangerous is coming to Xbox One this year during its GDC presentations today. We don’t know very much about the port, but I suppose we ought to have expected it; Frontier Developments has a very close relationship […]

  • Battletoads to appear in Shovel Knight Xbox One

    A Battletoads remake must be on the horizon. Right? Right?? The Battletoads will appear in the upcoming Xbox One version of Shovel Knight, Yacht Club Games revealed today. The Battletoads drop in for a fight! Shovel Knight is headed to Xbox One and meets up with @RareLtd brawling trio! pic.twitter.com/OCQIuWbH3W — Yacht Club Games (@YachtClubGames) […]

  • The Division pre-alpha footage leaks, Ubisoft says it’s well out of date

    The Division fans finally got a look at Ubisoft’s MMO this week, but the publisher has said the footage is not in any way representative. Pre-alpha footage of the The Division was leaked this week, but has since been thoroughly smacked down by takedown notices. All that remains are a few screenshots and a GIF: […]

  • Microsoft HoloLens designer killed in hit and run accident

    Very sad news out of Redmond this week, as Mike Ey was killed in a tragic accident. Ey, 30, was one of the key project designers on Microsoft’s HoloLens AR headset. He was killed on Saturday morning in a rear-end collision. The driver of the second vehicle fled the scene but was tracked down by […]

  • AMD throws support behind VR with new low-latency anti-nausea tech

    GPU manufacturer AMD has released a new SDK compatible with “a broad set of VR devices”. Called LiquidVR, the tech is designed to “bring better content, comfort, and compatibility to VR applications” including games, simulation, entertainment, education, social media, travel, medicine, real estate and ecommerce, apparently. AMD said maintaining comfort and realism in VR environments […]

  • Danganronpa 3 in the works, but a long way off yet

    A new Danganronpa is happening. Danganronpa 3 is in the very, very early production stages, writer Kodaka Kazutaka has confirmed. Nothing about the project is “set in stone”, Kazutaka told Polygon, so there are no details to share yet; the characters and story may change several times before being finalised. The writer said he’s weighing […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare MLG Pro League 2015 schedule announced

    Major League Gaming has announced the full schedule for the 2015 Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare MLG Pro League. The eSpots firm revealed two more seasons of Pro League, a live Relegation tournament for Season Three, and a season ending World Championship with $250,000 up for grabs You can watch all the action on MLG.tv […]

  • Happy Birthday PlayStation 2, you are almost old enough to drive

    Amidst all the GDC 2015 hoopla today, we forgot to wish PlayStation 2 a Happy Birthday. The system turned 15 years old today, going by its March 4, 2000 launch date in Japan. It was released in the west that autumn, and had shipped 100 million units in less than six years post launch. PS2 […]

  • Here’s what the final version of Valve’s Steam Controller looks like

    A look at the updated Steam Controller has surfaced via a hands-on post from Polygon. Valve said what you see in the images below is the final version of the controller. The controller has gone through numerous revisions since it was first revealed, but it seems Valve has decided on two touch pads which work […]

  • The Sims, SimCity developer closed down

    The Sims 4 developer Maxis has been shuttered, EA has confirmed. The Sims, SimCity and the rest of the Sim franchise has traditionally been helmed by Maxis, which had its flagship studio in Emeryville, California. Now EA has confirmed with Kotaku that this studio is being closed. “Today we are consolidating Maxis IP development to […]

  • Gigantic MOBA coming to Windows 10 and Xbox One with cross-play

    Today during GDC 2015, Microsoft announced that the new IP from Motiga called Gigantic will be cross-play enabled. Slated for Windows 10 and Xbox One, the five-on-five third-person battle arena game allows the player to select from an array of heroes with distinctive powers and play styles. Players will then make their way through areas […]

  • Here’s a look at Unreal Tournament DirectX 12 gameplay

    Epic Games is creating Unreal Tournament using Unreal Engine 4 running on DirectX 12, which Microsoft says “sets a new bar for visual fidelity.” DirectX 12 is a single API developers can access across Windows devices, which can result in a 20% improvement in performance over DX11 running on the same machine. The Unreal Tournament […]

  • Wireless adapter for Xbox One controllers out later this year

    Microsoft announced at GDC 2015 today it will that all wireless Xbox gaming accessories will be designed for and supported on both Xbox One consoles and Windows 10 PCs moving forward. Later this year, a wireless adapter will be released, allowing current Xbox controllers and future devices to be used wirelessly on PCs. This will […]

  • Microsoft offers up more details on Spencer’s GDC 2015 talk

    Microsoft has provided more details on Cross-Buy functionality between Windows 10 and Xbox One as well as the Xbox Live SKU and other announcements made during Phil Spencer’s talk today. During the session, the head of Xbox shared “the next step” in the company’s plans for a unified platform across all Windows 10 devices which […]

  • Wasteland 2 is coming to PlayStation 4 this summer

    Wasteland 2 is coming to PlayStation 4 as a Game of the Year Edition. inXile Entertainment announced the news on the PS Blog, noting the edition contains enhancements and improvements. The game has been ported to Unity 5, which was announced over the weekend, providing upgraded visual effects, “improved character models, upgraded environments, and Unity […]

  • Cross-Buy detailed for Windows 10 and Xbox One; Elite: Dangerous coming to Xbox One

    During Xbox boss Phil Spencer’s session at GDC 2015 today, it was announced Elite: Dangerous would release on Xbox One. Spencer also outlined cross-buy functionality across Windows 10 and Xbox One. Spencer’s talk started off with Frontier Developments announcing Elite: Dangerous for release this summer as a console debut on Xbox One, suggesting the Elite: […]

  • Longbeards Culture Pack available now for Total War: Attila

    The Longbeards Culture Pack is now available for Total War: Attila and it comes with three new playable factions. The Langobards, the Burgundians and the Alamans can be played in both single and multiplayer campaign modes as well as custom and multiplayer battles. A new feature called The Lay of Ybor is also included. It […]

  • Nvidia unveils Titan X as world’s “most advanced GPU” – video

    Nvidia revealed Titan X as “the world’s most advanced GPU” during Epic founder Tim Sweeney’s State of Unreal session a t GDC 2015 today. Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang took the stage during the panel stating it contains “8 billion transistors,” and has 12GB of RAM. Pricing wasn’t announced, but it was rumored back in January […]

  • Steam sale discounts titles announced for SteamOS

    With many of the year’s most popular games heading to SteamOS, Valve has decided to host sale in celebration. Here’s a short list of titles on sale. The full list of PC, Linux, Mac and SteamOS discounts can be found through the link. The Banner Saga Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Batman: Arkham […]

  • PayDay 2 announced for SteamOS, celebrating with franchise sale

    PayDay 2 is coming to SteamOS, Overkill has announced. Still under development, a release date will be announced at a later date. “Making sure PAYDAY 2 is available on SteamOS felt like a no-brainer,” said Bo Andersson Klint, CEO of Starbreeze in the press release. “With PAYDAY 2: Crimewave Edition coming to the next generation […]

  • Magicka 2 has a release date and a crazy new trailer

    Magicka 2 has a release date for PC and the PlayStation 4, and Paradox Interactive has released a trailer featuring “Vlad’s latest lyrical triumph,” which is his rendition of the Game of Thrones theme. Magicka arrived on PC and PS4 May 26 and the game can be pre-ordered on PC beginning today, with PS4 pre-orders […]

  • Nintendo eShop schedule: Don’t Starve: Giant Edition, Never Alone, others

    Nintendo has sent over a list of titles heading to the eShop in 2015. The schedule contains titles such as Affordable Space Adventures, Runbow, Swords & Soldiers 2, Don’t Starve: Giant Edition, Never Alone and Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars. Below a preliminary list of games scheduled to launch in the Nintendo eShop on […]

  • Week 8: Can you win the weekly VG247 GTA Online playlist? Play tonight at 8pm UK time!

    We’re hotdogging tonight. I don’t even know what that means. Eight weeks of ridiculous death. Such a brave, true milestone. We’re going to celebrate two entire months of playing weekly GTA Online playlists with VG247 readers with Hotdogging, a set of six jobs I named completely at random. This one ends with a straight-up border […]

  • Puzzle platformer Four Sided Fantasy coming to PC, consoles in early 2016

    Curve Digital and developer Logan Fieth’s studio Ludo Land are bringing puzzle platformer, Four Sided Fantasy, to PC all major consoles in early 2016. Ludo Land are developing the PC version, with Curve Digital handling the console and Vita versions. Four Sided Fantasy tasks players with venturing across “dreamlike levels” by controlling and manipulating the […]

  • Tropico 5 arrives on PS4 in April – video

    A release date for Tropico 5 on PlayStation 4 has been announced. This is the franchise’s first foray onto PlayStation consoles. It arrived in Europe on April 24 and in North America on April 28. A Limited Edition has also been announced, and it includes The Big Cheese DLC and the Bayo Del Olfato sandbox […]

  • Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain Limited Edition PS4 releasing in Asia

    A limited edition Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain PlayStation 4 system will be released in Asia. The system and its DualShock controller were designed in collaboration with Konami Digital Entertainment and targeted for the Asia region, per Gematsu. It will be released as part of PS4 Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain […]

  • This video shows Sid Meier’s Starships being played on iPad

    Sid Meier’s Starships will be released on iPad alongside Mac and PC, and to give you an idea on how it plays on the tablet, a new video has been released. Watch below as Pete Murray and lead producer Stuart Zissu show off the iPad version. The 4X space-strategy releases on March 12.

  • Wolfenstein: The Old Blood announced as standalone prequel to Wolfenstein: The New Order

    Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, a standalone prequel to The New Order, will release May 5 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One. The game takes pace in 1946, and and players take on the role of B.J. Blazkowicz as he embarks on a two-part mission in Bavaria. Part one, Rudi Jäger and the Den of Wolves, […]

  • Observer Mode coming soon to Evolve as a free update

    Observer Mode will be released for Evolve as a free update for all platforms, 2K and Turtle Rock have announced. The community feature was designed to give Evolve players the ability to observe and add commentary as well as livestream, allowing a sixth user to “passively enter a custom game” with the ability to switch […]

  • Dragon Quest Heroes and PS4 top Media Create charts in Japan

    The PlayStation 3 and PS4 skus for Dragon Quest Heroes were the top sellers on the Media Create charts in Japan, moving a combined 594,749 units. Elsewhere on the chart, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D was in third place with 39,751 units moved, and last week’s top seller, God Eater 2: Rage Burst, […]

  • Watch Hideo Kojima answer lots of your burning Phantom Pain questions

    What’s better than learning the official release date of MGS5: The Phantom pain? Hideo Kojima talking more about it, of course! Hideo Kojima has decided to answer a few fan questions about Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, to help boost everyone’s hype to insane levels. He talks about the game’s story, his relief […]

  • MGS5: The Phantom Pain Day 1 and Collector’s Edition revealed

    Konami has officially revealed the release date of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain alongside the game’s Day 1 and Collector’s Edition. Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain will release September 1, worldwide, as previously leaked. It will be available on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. The PC Steam […]

  • EU Club Nintendo: Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds soundtrack back in stock

    Club Nintendo members in Europe can once again pick up The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds soundtrack. For 3000 Stars, members of the program will receive the double-CD soundtrack which features 89 tracks with liner notes from Ryo Nagamatsu and 12 sheet music excerpts. It also comes with 16 Milk Bar Musician pieces. […]

  • HTC apologises over “confusing” Half-Life VR comments

    HTC has misspoke when it talked about Half-Life coming to VR headset Vive. HTC chairwoman Cher Wang has apologised over the comments she made yesterday about the possibility of Half-Life coming to Vive, the VR headset it’s manufacturing with the help of Valve. Sources close to Valve, have indicated to the BBC that the developer […]

  • What do Heists and Daily Objectives tell us about the future of GTA Online?

    Daily Objectives could be more important to GTA Online than Heists. These theories and more, from a giddy Matt Martin. Yesterday Rockstar dropped a bombshell. Not only is it releasing Heists next week – the mythical 4-player missions for GTA Online – but it’s also going to be introducing daily challenges and more modes to […]

  • Breaking down Hardline Premium, is it worth it?

    Having been announced just a few days ago, the Premium service for Battlefield Hardline has been a topic of constant debate among the Battlefield community. Many look at Hardline as a Battlefield off-shoot that will just tide everyone over until Battlefront comes out in the fall. EA has other plans however, announcing a $50 Premium […]

  • Watch Dogs sold more than GTA 5 and FIFA 15 in Australia in 2014

    Watch Dogs outsold GTA 5, and FIFA 15, at retail in Australia last year. According to data obtained by the Interactive Games & Entertainment Association (IGEA) from the NPD Group Australia, last year’s year retail sales charts look a bit different in Australia. The top-selling game was Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, followed by Watch […]

  • Watch PC footage of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt from GDC 2015

    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt has a new gameplay video available that shows a bit of action from the PC version. The video below was captured from Nvidia’s GDC conference live-stream. Developer CD Projekt RED was on hand to show off The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt‘s graphical prowess running on a PC. Thanks, GamesHQMedia.