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VG247 Scotland issue #1: Where’s the best place to sell games?

Friday, 17 January 2014 13:57 GMT By Dave Cook

VG247 Scotland continues with a look at where the nation’s developers weigh in on the changing tides of game distribution, the bursting Steam Greenlight bubble and how best to get Scottish games into the hands of players.

Missed VG247 Scotland issue #0: Why Scotland is more than GTA 5? Just hit the link to check it out.

Last month, I held a discussion panel focused on why Scotland is more than just Grand Theft Auto. Sure enough, our nation did spawn arguably the biggest gaming franchise to date, but it’s got much more to offer. The question raised by many readers was, ‘If that’s the case, then were are these games you speak of?’ That’s exactly what we’re attempting to cover in this issue’s panel session.

Of course, this is a prominent matter not just the Scottish industry, but the wider market. On one hand you have saturated mobile hubs like iTunes and Android, where visibility is hard-fought given the sheer influx of games releasing on both stores each day. Steam was once heralded as a champion of the people; a place for the uninitiated to make their bread with ease. Some would argue that Greenlight has back-fired, flooding Valve’s service with vast quantities of games that push many releases to the bottom and quashing their potential.

In something of a surprising twist, Sony and Microsoft each announced indie initiatives last year. Suddenly, the big, nasty corporate world of PS4 and Xbox One appeared a little big brighter, but we’re yet to see the true potential of both schemes. So while it’s clear that the sands are shifting right under developer’s feet, where can creators release their games with the highest hope of success? Find out what we thought about these and other issues in our panel session below.

But first…

News


Bodycheck coming to PS Vita later this year
Ludometrics has announced that it’s releasing Bodycheck on PS Vita later this year. In a post on PS Blog EU, director David Thomson explained that the game was based around the conception of football, back when there were 500 players using a pig’s head as a ball. It won’t be that brutal or vast, but the game will take a rough approach to the beautiful game, with plenty of punching and scratching.

There will be four-way matches, magical attacks, crushing body-blows and more. Here an early Bodycheck trailer for you to check out. We’ll have more on the game soon.


Lucky Frame brings Bad Hotel to Android today
Hot off the heels of its superb Tacos, Bluegrass and Videogames event last weekend, Gentlemen! developer Lucky Frame will roll out its mobile smash Bad Hotel on Google Play today, January 17. The game sees players defending their newly-acquired hotel against Tarnation Tadstock, the Texas Tyrant and his army of seagulls and other beasts. You can repel his forces by building your hotel wisely and by unloading a range of powerful weaponry.

There’s a musical twist however, as depending on your hotel’s set-up, you will also be composing the game’s soundtrack as you go. Check out the Bad Hotel homepage now and keep your eyes peeled for the Android release today.


Scottish parliament holds third meeting with Scotland’s game professionals
Back in December, the Scottish government held its third cross-party meeting with members of Scotland’s games industry. The minutes for the meeting have now been released, courtesy of the Computer Games Journal’s Dr Malcolm Sutherland. The meeting gave game-makers a chance to voice concerns and make suggestions directly to government, with a view to further improving parliament’s support of the sector. You can get a full overview of what was discussed through the link above.


TigerFace Games up for iKids Award
Edinburgh-based studio TigerFace Games has been short-listed for an iKids Award. The awards champion educational games and websites for children, and the panel has chosen the studio’s head-to-head mathematical game Cosmic Reactor as one of its top picks. The iKids award ceremony will take place in New York next month. Check out the game’s trailer, synopsis and screens here. Best of luck to TigerFace!

Via The Scotsman.


Eldevin and Power Up appear on Steam Greenlight
A pair of Scottish games have appeared on Steam Greenlight and are now accepting votes. Hunted Cow’s fantasy MMO Eldevin is first, and is poised to launch on PC, Mac and Linux. The RPG is available now in browser form, and has been in continuous development for the last eight years, bringing hundreds of quests and many new features into the mix. Browser update 1.03 recently launched, and you’ll find the patch notes through the link.

Next up is Psychotic Psoftware’s retro-styled shooter Power Up, which hurls your tiny space ship against gigantic robot behemoths and swarms of nasty aliens. It’s big, loud and full of bullet-hell action. You can check out a collection of Power Up trailers here.

You can vote for Eldevin and Power Up on Steam Greenlight through the relevant links, where you’ll also find their trailers, screens and details. Let us know what you think below.

Lub Vs Dub featured as Apple & Starbucks’ app of the week in America
Apple and Starbucks often give away iOS apps in-store to customers. Over the holidays, the coffee chain’s North American stores featured Jon McKellan’s endless runner project Lub Vs Dub. The game was created as part of the 2013 Scottish Game Jam and can be downloaded on iTunes for £0.69.

McKellan’s a member of indie outfit Futuro, and I’m guessing he and his team are pretty chuffed at the news right now. I checked the game out in Dundee before year’s end and it looked like a stupidly addictive and challenging take on the endless runner format, complete with a competitive multiplayer mode that sees you trying to ruin your friend’s run. Go check it out now.

Thanks to Scottish Games Network for the tip.


The retro-tastic Ducky Fuzz is out now on Android & iOS
Ducky Fuzz is the next game from Smiling Bag, otherwise known as solo coder Stew Hogarth. It’s a retro-themed arcade title on iOS and Android that sees you manipulating pixelated waves to steer a gang of rubber ducks past water mines and storms while trying to collect coins. If you’re not careful the cute little buggers will get maimed, which is just really sad to see. You can watch the Ducky Fuzz trailer here.

Panel Session: Where’s the best place to sell games?

This month I’m joined by Stewart Gilray, CEO of Oddworld developer Just Add Water, David Thomson, director of studio Ludometrics, and Yann Seznec, director of Gentlemen! and Bad Hotel developer Lucky Frame. During our chat we discuss the pros and cons of various markets including PSN, Xbox Live Arcade, the App Store, Google Play and Steam. We also talk about how easy it is to get on these stores and how likely it is for a project to remain visible once there.

If you’re a developer who has experience of these marketplaces, we’d love to hear your own personal stories below

The topic of next month’s VG247 Scotland panel session is ‘Educating Scotland,’ and will look at the range of educational courses offered to aspiring game makers, musicians, artists and more across the country. We’ll also touch on the state of Scottish game education as a whole, the potential for finding work after graduation, the viability of setting up as a new indie team or solo creator, and much, much more. Expect it in Issue #2, sometime in February.

Developer Interview: Pete Shea

(Note: since this interview was conducted, Pete has left Firebrand Games. Sometimes these things happen, but it’s still a cracking interview with many valid points about the global industry and Scotland at large. As such, I’ve left it in.)

Last, but my no means least, we have an interview with Pete Shea, former creative director at Glasgow-based studio Firebrand Games. They’re the team behind artful and incredibly addictive space puzzler Solar Flux. The game tasks players with re-igniting dead stars using solar energy, while conserving fuel by sling-shotting between the gravity wells of planets. It’s both charming and aesthetically pleasing, with a calming tone and wonderful art style.

You can download Solar Flux on Steam, iOS and Android through the relevant links. It’s been getting great reviews since it launched, so it’s certainly worth a look.

”Outside of Rockstar there are very few, if any, companies with more than 30 staff. Instead there are close to 100 micro developers that have sprung up around the country; all making indie games or creating unique games businesses in different areas.”

I recently spoke with former Firebrand Games creative director Pete Shea to get a handle on the team’s foundation and projects, as well as some feedback on the Scottish industry at large. The studio was formed following the collapse of Dundee’s DC Studios in 2006, which is not to be confused with the Batman lot. CEO Mark Greenshields and seven of his colleagues decided to take the plunge and set up a new company. Years later, the developer is still going strong, with its own proprietary ‘Octane Engine’ tech, several multi-platform releases under its belt and a second site in Florida.

Over time the team found its focus with racing games, and has worked alongside Codemasters to create Nintendo DS ports of TOCA and Colin McRae DiRT, as well as TrackMania and three Need for Speed titles. Firebrand is now working on its own IP, starting with Solar Flux. Shea told me that focusing on one genre had helped the studio make a name for itself and gave it scope to branch out into its own projects.

“We’re definitely taking a wider approach to development than we have in the past,” he explained. “A few years ago specialising in one genre was a real strength for a small developer- in our case handheld racing games- but now changes in the market have meant this is no longer desirable. There are far fewer racing games being made than there were seven years ago, and really only the huge franchises survive on the most powerful hardware.

“It’s very difficult for a small company like Firebrand to compete with the likes of Turn 10 or Polyphony Digital on next generation hardware so it seems inevitable we will probably make less racing games and turn our attention to other things. Fortunately, we have people in the studio with a broad range of game development experience – adventure games, character based games and puzzle games, and also a real love and passion for all types of gaming- from hardcore RPGs to obscure Indies to casual mobile puzzle games.

“While we are still always on the lookout for work for hire opportunities, in part our destiny is much more in our own hands now so we are looking for game ideas that can either offer something new and interesting or something with a big chance of commercial success. Or ideally both.”

It’s a big world out there, as we found in our panel session above. There are now so many options available to developers, regardless of team size, location or focus. It’s clear that many teams out there want to be the next Angry Birds, but many of them still try to emulate Rovio’s format and success, rather than attempting a new, refreshing concept. This is partly why mobile stores are awash with clones and over-familiar prospects. Firebrand was keen to avoid that pitfall when conceptualising it’s first new IP, Solar Flux.

Shea told me that the idea came two years ago, and was born during an internal incubation process designed to encourage new ideas. “We’d always wanted to develop our own games – our own IP,” he recalled, “but had been too busy up until this point to really focus on this. Three new ideas were developed to a proof of concept stage and of these, far and away the best idea was a game called Solar Flux. This combined classic 8 bit thrust game mechanics with cool puzzles and a unique ambient aesthetic.

“Over the following 18 months we continued to work on Solar Flux occasionally while working on larger paid projects and then finally released the game on iPad in August 2013. The older veterans in the studio fondly remembered classic titles like Lunar Lander, Asteroids, Zarch and Oids, while others loved more recent thrust games like Osmos. The appeal of making a science fiction game that wasn’t about blasting or trading or space opera appealed to everyone.”

”Unless you are brave enough to start up on your own, there just aren’t the opportunities for graduate developers in Scotland due to the small nature of the majority of companies. Apart from Rockstar, Scotland has none of the vast AAA studios found in Montreal, mainland Europe or the Far East.”

I first played Solar Flux last year, and found it to be a calming experience. It’s both slow and methodical, but also demands precise timing and close attention to resources. It’s one of those games that really gets the concept of one-touch control, as you boost your probe through the colourful tranquillity of space using just one finger. It certainly offers something that looks, sounds and feels different to the glut of match-three and familiar endless runner titles out there today.

The game went up against Forza Horizon at the 2013 TIGA awards, but ultimately lost out to the racer. Regardless, that’s still a grand feat for what some would readily dub a ‘small’ Scottish studio. Firebrand isn’t small by any means, but this is a negative attitude we spoke about at length in the first issue of this column. The problem is that Scotland is often dubbed a one-game nation thanks to the dominance of Rockstar North’s Grand Theft Auto franchise. Studios like Firebrand and the many talented and prosperous companies we’ll introduce you to throughout this series prove that theory wrong, no questions asked.

“Compared to how Scotland was ten years ago things are very different,” Shea said of the nation’s industry,”on the surface much weaker, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. We still have the mighty Rockstar North in Edinburgh, of course, but there used to be a number of other big Scottish companies competing in the global AAA games field; the likes of Realtime Worlds, VIS entertainment, Visual Science, Red Lemon and DMA Design.

“Now outside of Rockstar there are very few, if any, companies with more than 30 staff. Instead there are close to 100 micro developers that have sprung up around the country; all making indie games or creating unique games businesses in different areas. Some of these like Firebrand, Tag Games and 4J Studios have made successful sustainable businesses that have survived for many years by staying small, finding business opportunities and managing risks, but the exact profitability of many of the others is unclear.

“Some of the Indies may be struggling to feed themselves, I honestly don’t know, and others who appear successful on the face of things may be heavily backed by external investment, which can be a risk. One of the difficulties I think is the lack of transparency in indie development. People look at the incredible success of games like Minecraft or Clash of Clans and believe they too can achieve that. But these are extreme outliers that hide just how difficult being an indie developer is in the modern market.”

This brings us neatly back to the topic of this month’s column. Shea cautioned that markets like the App Store may seem like easy money-makers, but the reality is less cheerful. Placing high in the iOS paid apps may sound like a dream come true, but how much money will you make at £0.69 per download, and what happens if you disappear off that chart as fast as you came? As I’ve said often on this site; after looking at the sales metrics of several mobile games, it’s often a case of modest launches followed by rapidly diminishing returns.

Shea remains optimistic however, and championed the Scottish games industry’s sense of community. “There’s a real sense now of companies helping each other out, collaborating, or just offering advice where they can,” he added. “The games industry is arguably a tougher business than it ever has been, so this type of help and support can be invaluable to smaller companies.” He also explained that while the solidarity among Scotland’s game professionals is at its strongest, we’re still losing graduates from our various educational establishments to overseas markets.

Shea continued, “Unless you are brave enough to start up on your own, there just aren’t the opportunities for graduate developers in Scotland due to the small nature of the majority of companies. Apart from Rockstar, Scotland has none of the vast AAA studios found in Montreal, mainland Europe or the Far East. If you want to learn your trade working in a big team in AAA development your opportunities in the UK, never mind Scotland, are pretty limited.

”Look at our heritage, look at DMA Design, not just Lemmings, but a company chosen to be in Nintendo’s Dream Team for the launch of N64. Then look at all the companies spawned from DMA and the range of games they produced.”

“Fixing this is far from easy, however, as companies will go where the cheapest, largest pool of skilled developers can be found and places like Montreal have become so established now as development mega-cities it’s hard to see a way back.”

This migration of home-grown talent is also something I’ll touch on in a future VG247 Scotland column, but despite all of the valid and pressing problems Shea has touched upon, he was keen to highlight the nation’s high academic standards, and the sheer range of smaller studios that are working hard to grow and prosper in what is undeniably a highly-competitive market. Things can only improve from here.

When I asked what he’d say to someone who feels Scotland is nothing more than GTA, Shea replied, “I’d say firstly; look at our heritage, look at DMA Design, not just Lemmings, but a company chosen to be in Nintendo’s Dream Team for the launch of N64. Then look at all the companies spawned from DMA and the range of games they produced; many huge hits like Crackdown. Then look at the hundred companies around today making games for many different platforms and audiences; from educational games to cool indie games to bringing Minecraft to consoles. Then there is the not-so-small matter of the biggest console game in the world being made in Edinburgh: GTA.

“On the Education side, Abertay University led the UK in introducing dedicated game development courses over a decade ago and then gave birth to the fantastic Dare to be Digital competition for student teams which has also created many great games and developers. They have been followed by equally good courses at University West of Scotland, Glasgow Caledonian University and many smaller colleges.”

I’ve often found it difficult to convince sceptics that Scotland has a valid and growing game industry, but the evidence is there to see if you care to look into the matter. I closed my interview with Shea on education, because this will be the key topic of February’s VG247 Scotland column, entitled ‘Educating Scotland.’ It promises to be an insightful look at the nation’s academic prowess within the field of game development.

For now though, share your feedback on this month’s news, panel and interview with us in the comments, and as always, we’re keen to hear from you on the Scottish industry at large. Thanks for reading.

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4 Comments

  1. absolutezero

    Perhaps the way forward is to just solely concentrate on mobile development and forget that we used to make full scale games. The market is there, the teams however small they might be are making money and the games they produce are of a half decent quality.

    Much like the brilliant interview this time I can’t see a way back from where we are. Scotland will never become akin to a Montreal at this stage despite its wealth of talent and history.

    Sucks.

    #1 1 year ago
  2. Kemper Boyd

    Are the mobile games making any money though? Is anyone outside the Top 10 Apps really making any money on the App Store, or is the gold rush well and truly over?

    Given the install base of experienced devs in Scotland and the great courses churning out graduates there could be scope for a big player to set up a medium/large studio here but without tax breaks, or maybe independence (not that I want to start that debate here again…) I can’t see it happening.

    The failure of Realtime Worlds really damaged the Scottish games industry and we’re still feeling the effects now. Mind you the rest of the UK is not doing a whole lot better either…

    Yeah, sucks.

    #2 1 year ago
  3. flackboy

    The entire discussion on the Hang Outs in this edition was about the potential and opportunities in the mobile markets, what the new consoles bring to the table and where developers can go.

    The reality is that the industry is changing. There are fewer and fewer larger studios out there working specifically on console. Over 78% of UK developers are now ‘digital only’ i.e. mobile/indie/PC. That’s closer to 95% here in Scotland.

    But they are ALL still game developers. They’re all making games. The idea that some platforms support ‘real’ games and some don’t is just wrong. For most developers, the micro studios we have now, the barriers to entry on console are quite high in terms of costs and resources needed to make a full 3D game.

    So for most new start-ups, or people leaving larger studios, mobile is the simplest, cheapest way to bring their vision to gamers.

    There are major issues with mobile. As Kemper asked – who’s making money? It’s a tough market. There are over 1M apps out there and most developers are not giving their games the sort of support and marketing they need to get the discovered.

    The collapse of Realtime was damaging, but around EIGHT companies appeared out of the ashes. Scotland’s development sector is more diverse and productive than ever. We released well over 100 games in 2013, more than we did across most of the 1990s.(http://scottishgames.net/2013/12/23/2013-a-year-in-releases/)

    We need more innovation. We need more people taking risks. We need more commercial ‘hits’. But writing off the industry because it can’t become Montreal is wrong. We don’t want to be Montreal. We want to be something different, something pioneering and somewhere that innovation and experimentation creates new types of gaming each and every single year…

    #3 1 year ago
  4. WeeGoblin

    From my experience it’s not just the games industry that is facing this endemic opinion that we (Scotland) can’t do big companies. All creative industries seem to be suffering from either ‘brain drain’ or where we do retain the talent we’re seen as parochial and/or the cheaper option. By become a small company (or sole trader) is the only way to keep down the overheads, but I feel this is becoming self defeating. Big budget projects don’t often fall into the laps of sole traders as those who hold the purse strings are nervous of putting all their eggs in one basket.

    I apologise for the use of and mixing of metaphors at all times.

    #4 1 year ago

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    The latest free title to be added to EA’s Origin service is 1993′s Syndicate. For a limited time, you can download the game for free and keep it, much like previous titles such as Theme Hospital. The isometric, real-time, tactical-action game was developed by Bullfrog Productions and released in June 1993. It is a favorite […]

  • Ancient Labyrinth DLC for Lords of the Fallen now available

    The Ancient Labyrinth DLC for Lords of the Fallen is now available for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. It will run you $7.99 and builds upon the existing lore, characters, and storyline. Have a look at some new screenshots in the gallery below.

  • Shadowrun Online gets a name change and release date

    Shadowrun Online developer Cliffhanger Productions has announced the game’s name has been changed to Shadowrun Chronicles: Boston Lockdown and a release date for April has been set. The new title was formed via the developer and its Kickstarter backers, with the goal being to let those unfamiliar with the game know by the title alone […]

  • Amazon hosting Rockstar and 2K Games sale

    Amazon is hosting a Rockstar Games and 2K Games sale with discounts Max Payne titles, Bully and more. Here’s just some of the offerings listed: Manhunt 2 PC Download $3.00 Max Payne 3 PC Download $4.00 Bully: Scholarship Edition PC Download $3.00 LA Noire Xbox 360 $2.95 L.A. Noire: The Complete Edition PC Download $6.00 […]

  • Destiny weekly reset video shows off Inferno Crucible gameplay

    We have a gameplay video featuring Inferno Crucible gameplay featured in the Destiny weekly reset for you. In it, Arekkz Gaming gives you a look at Inferno Crucible and goes over the various intricacies. You can read up on the weekly reset through the links.

  • Resident Evil: Revelations 2 Episode 2 available from today

    Episode 2 for Resident Evil: Revelations 2 is now available. If you’ve purchased the Complete Season, you’ll be able to download Episode 2 on PS3, PS4 and Xbox One. Steam players should see the episode go live around 9-10pm PST, and Xbox 360 owners should be able to download very early tomorrow morning, per Capcom […]

  • Here’s a sneak peek video for Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide

    Fatshark Games has released a sneak peek video for its upcoming Games Workshop title, Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide. Vermintide is a FPS, co-op action title coming to PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and its set during the End Times of the Warhammer universe in the city of Ubersreik. Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare video shows Ascendance DLC early access weapon

    As you know, Xbox Season Pass holders now have early access to the Ascendance DLC Pack bonus weapons for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Now you can watch a trailer for the weapon. The OHM directed energy hybrid weapon can switch between an LMG and Shotgun “on the fly,” and it also includes the OHM-Werewolf […]

  • March PS Plus games include OlliOlli 2, Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty, more

    March PlayStation Plus titles have popped up on the PS Plus page. Noticed by NeoGAF user skynidas, the titles include: OlliOlli2 (PS4/VITA) Valiant Hearts: The Great War (PS4) Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty (PS4) Counterspy (PS4/PS3) Papo & Yo (PS3) Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishment (PS3) A notice has also been posted on the EU PS […]

  • Sci-fi horror game Caffeine will release on Xbox One, PS4 alongside PC – new trailer

    Caffeine creator Dylan Browne has announced the Unreal Engine 4 game will be released on Xbox One. The game will be published through Microsoft’s Indie Program. As previously announced, it is also coming to PC and and now PlayStation 4. Caffeine is a sci-fi horror game which stars a young boy who has been abandoned […]

  • Xbox 360 Preview program invites going out this month

    Much like the Xbox One Preview program, starting early this month, invites for the Xbox 360 Preview program will start rolling out. Select invitees will be able to join program directly from their Xbox 360. A special Xbox Live message will be sent, directing users to head over to their Settings page. Further instructions are […]

  • Tron: Legacy director in negotiations for Gran Turismo film

    Tron: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski is said to be in early negotiations to direct the Gran Turismo film. This is according to the Hollywood Reporter, which states Michael De Luca is still slated as one of the producers alongside Matt Milam, Dana Brunetti, Josh Bratman, DeVon Franklin and Elizabeth Cantillon. Plot details are still unknown […]

  • Fifth add-on pack for Alien: Isolation is available for download

    The Trigger, which is is the fifth add-on pack for Alien: Isolation, is available to download from today. In it, players will “compete against the clock” across three new maps in Survivor Mode. Set before the events of the main game, players step into the shoes of Sevastopol Station’s Ricardo who will do what he […]

  • HBO Go app now available on PlayStation 4

    Sony has announced the HBO Go app will be made available for download later today for PlayStation 4. The app works just like the PS version. Now you can watch True Detective, Game of Thrones, Veep and more through your console. Information on installation is available through the PS Blog.

  • Skyrim mods no longer restricted to 100MB in size

    Bethesda has announced a beta for Creation Kit update 1.9.33, lifts the 100MB size restriction for Skyrim mod makers. The beta is for both Skyrim’s PC launcher and the Creation Kit which will allow for unlimited file sizes. Here are the notes: Creation Kit 1.9.33 Update Creation Kit now supports unlimited file sizes for mods […]

  • Mad Max release date set for September, PS3 and Xbox 360 versions canned

    Mad Max from Just Cause developer Avalanche Studios has been given a September release date, along with the new of a last-gen cancellation. The axing of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions were announced via Game Informer. Mad Max is the magazine’s featured game for the April issue. Avalanche, according GI, nixed development on […]

  • MGS 5: The Phantom Pain out in September, Kojima “closing the loop” on saga

    Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain will be released in September, according to an IGN Italy video, which also features Hideo Kojima discussing “With Metal Gear Solid 5, I’m finally “closing the loop” on the Metal Gear saga. The video has since been removed, but an image cap of the date is posted above. […]

  • Forza Horizon 2 Rockstar Energy Car Pack now available

    The Rockstar Energy Car Pack for Forza Horizon 2 for Xbox One is available now, alongside the free car for March. The free car is the Acura Integra Type-R, and the Rockstar pack included the following vehicles: 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GRC 2015 Subaru WRX STI 1996 BMW 850CSi 2015 Jaguar XFR-S 1970 Volkswagen #1107 Desert […]

  • 3DS firmware update kills web browser exploit

    Nintendo has issued a 3DS firmware update which fixes a web browser exploit that was being used to run pirated Game Boy Color ROMs since January as well as inject code within downloadable games. Another piece of code, per Eurogamer, changed the setting on the handheld to make it region-free. The exploit was only available […]

  • Unreal Tournament video shows updated textures on Outpost 23

    The latest footage from Epic’s new Unreal Tournament has surfaced, and it shows off the game’s first high-textured map which is called Outpost 23. As you can see from Zaccubus’ video, its the same are which Epic showed in the flythrough video from last year, only with updated textures and some new areas outside. The […]

  • Final add-on for Sunset Overdrive arrives in April

    The final add-on for Sunset Overdrive, Dawn of the Rise of the Fallen Machines, will be released in April. On April 1 to be exact. No, that’s not an April Fool’s joke from Insomniac Games either. Below, you can watch a fist-look at the new story, area, and traversal mechanic.

  • Heroes of the Storm playable at EGX Rezzed

    Heroes of the Storm will be playable at EGX Rezzed. This will be the first UK public hands-on with the online team brawler. Blizzard will also host giveaways and friendly tournaments at its stand. Tickets for all three days of Rezzed are still available, and you can purchase a pass through the official website. EGX […]

  • PES 2015 Data Pack 4 coming next week with Winter Transfers, new faces

    Data Pack 4 for Pro Evolution Soccer 2015 has been dated, and it updates the game with Winter Transfers, new player faces, and additional stadiums. The latest free update contains real-time player transfers made within the January window, and player ratings have also been updated. Additionally, a number of improved likenesses to key players will […]

  • Here’s the changelog for Dragon Age: Inquisition Patch 5

    Notes for upcoming Patch 5 for Dragon Age: Inquisition have been posted, noting improvements to gameplay and stability, and the new features outlined back in early February. Along with the new party storage system added to the Undercroft at Skyhold, players also have the ability to adjust the size of subtitles. Below you will find […]

  • Game of Thrones, Mortal Kombat X, Batman mobile games on the way

    Warner Bros. has announced free-to-play mobile titles spanning its DC Comics, Mortal Kombat and Game of Thrones properties. The following five new games under development are: Mortal Kombat X from NetherRealm Studios: The game blends fighting and card collection with cinematic gameplay and Fatalities. Play as both classic and fighters, and if you own the […]

  • Win! Beta access to new MMORPG Skyforge and DLC worth $70

    We have ten Wrath of the Gods Founders Packs to giveaway for new RPG Skyforge, worth over $70. All you need to do to win a Wrath of the Gods pack is enter your details in the form below and we’ll pick 10 winners at random on Thursday, March 5, after 3pm GMT. Skyforge is […]

  • PC gaming expected to be worth $35 billion by 2018

    PC gaming is alive and well. In fact, it’s expected to be worth $35 billion by 2018. According to game-business group Open Gaming Alliance, the PC gaming industry is expected to grow beyond its current $26 billion worth and to a massive $35 billion by the year 2018. The information is based on data collected […]

  • Advanced Warfare: new patch adds new weapon, Master Prestige ranks, more

    Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare has received a new patch that gives season pass holders early access to a new weapon and everyone else a myriad of fixes and additions. The patch went live today on Xbox 360 and Xbox One, without any official notes. CharlieIntel reports that among the new additions is the new […]

  • Destiny’s end game and raids explained

    Destiny’s end game can be a bit obtuse to those not used to MMO games. Fear not, we’ve got a few quick tips on how to crack it. Arekkz Gaming has a video for new players of Destiny or those who are looking to brush up on their knowledge of the game. Today’s theme is […]

  • Capcom adds local co-op to Resident Evil: Revelations 2 on PC

    Following fan outrage over lack of local co-op support for the PC version of Resident Evil: Revelations 2, Capcom has now added it. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 now officially supports split-screen local co-op in both campaign and raid mode. The update is currently in beta on Steam, but anyone can opt-in to try it. Capcom […]

  • New Destiny glitch spawns infinite Thralls on Earth

    Destiny’s latest glitch spawns infinite Thralls to help fuel your bounty hunting and loot lust. The glitch is simple to replicate. You’ll need to start The Dark Within mission on Earth, on any difficulty. Then follow the steps in the video below (Via DualShockers) to get to an area out of the map. You’ll then […]

  • Battlefield 4 Winter Patch is here with new game mode, netcode improvements and more

    DICE has released the Winter Patch for Battlefield 4. The patch brings an eSports focus with new game mode Squad Obliteration and plenty more. Battlefield 4 Winter Patch is now live on all platforms. It’s just over 400MB on PC and 1.34GB on consoles. The patch adds new game mode Squad Obliteration and more customisation […]

  • HTC hopes to see Half-Life on VR headset Vive

    Vive manufacturer HTC said that it hopes to see Valve games, including Half-Life, on the virtual reality headset. Speaking to the BBC, HTC chairwoman Cher Wang said that Valve is keen on having its games available on the VR headset. “I think Valve’s best game is Dota, right, and Portal and [Team Fortress] and I […]

  • Make money easily in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

    If you’re looking to buy a fell set of armour for your character in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate but keep falling short on Zenny, this video will show you an easy way to make lots of it. Arekkz Gaming has a very handy tip for all Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate players: how to make Zenny […]

  • This is how you claim free Xbox One games from your Xbox 360

    Microsoft is giving everyone the ability to claim their free Xbox One Games with Gold titles from their Xbox 360 console, even without owning an Xbox One. If you don’t yet own an Xbox One and want to make sure you don’t miss out on all those free Games with Gold games, you’ll be pleased […]

  • Destiny weekly reset for March 3: Heroic and Nightfall detailed

    Bungie has reset the weekly cap of Crucible and Vanguard marks and added new Heroic and Nightfall strikes, now with burn. From now until next Tuesday, the weekly Heroic strike will be The Devil’s Lair with Heroic and Lightswitch modifiers. As for the Nightfall, you’ll be fighting Sepiks Prime with the help of Arc burn. […]

  • Few Mass Effect FemShep cosplays are as elaborate as this one

    The internet is full of Female Commander Shepard cosplay from Mass Effect, but very few are as terrific as this one. Visual artist Freya Willia has spent over two years painstakingly creating the perfect suit of armour and the best weapons to make her cosplay of Female Shepard as authentic as possible, Omni tool and […]

  • Deals with Gold: Assassin’s Creed Unity, Red Dead Redemption and more discounted

    This week’s Deals with Gold titles for Xbox Live subscribers is a good mix of modern games and old favourites. The list of discounted games through this week’s Deals with Gold is live with discounts on Assassin’s Creed Unity, Amazing Spider-Man 2, Red Dead Redemption, Max Payne 3, and more. The deals are live now […]

  • Destiny guide: how to maximise your Grimoire Points

    Destiny players regularly compare the size of their Grimoire Points. Learn how to make yours the biggest. Destiny guide: how to earn Grimoire Points In Destiny, earning most Grimoire cards is just a matter of playing the game, maybe a little more attentively than usual. You’ll either need to complete a certain number of actions […]

  • Shovel Knight: Plague of Shadows will let you play as a baddie

    Shovel Knight owners will benefit from the generosity of Kickstarter backers quite soon. Because Shovel Knight was overfunded during its Kickstarter campaign, developer Yacht Club Games committed to releasing free content updates. The first of these, Plague of Shadows, has now been detailed. The expansion stars baddy Plague Knight, who turns on his former allies, […]

  • GTA controversies, from Hot Coffee to PR manipulation

    GTA has a long history of controversy. The latest Did You Know Gaming tells the full stories behind the sensational headlines. Grand Theft Auto is such a byword for controversy that it’s easy to forget the full context of what actually happened to bring mainstream press, politicians and interest group awareness to the Rockstar series. […]

  • Infamous 2 one of five new PlayStation Now additions for March

    PlayStation Now will expand to the tune of five new games this month. The March PS Now additions are Infamous 2, Twisted Metal, R-Type Dimensions, Alone in the Dark: Inferno and Operation Flashpoint: Red River. PS Now will set you back $20 per month or $45 for a three month subscription. It offers all you […]

  • Final Fantasy 10/10-2 HD Remaster gets PS4 release date

    Final Fantasy 10/10-2 HD Remaster hits PS4 in May. The PS4 release date for Final Fantasy 10/10-2 HD Remaster is May 12 in North America and May 15 in Europe. Gematsu reports a special pre-order bonus calendar with art by Yoshitaka Amano is available through the Square Enix Store and participating retailers. In Europe, pre-ordering […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare getting 15 new Prestige levels

    Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare players can now aspire to the ranks of Grand Master Prestige. Advanced Warfare developer Sledgehammer Games will add 15 more Prestige levels to the latest Call of Duty, giving players at max XP a chance to grow even further. According to the Sledgehammer Games blog, when you enter Master level […]

  • Destiny: Crota’s End recreated in Minecraft

    Destiny’s toughest challenge gets even nastier if you throw Creepers into the mix. The ultimate Destiny challenge – for now – is the Crota’s End raid. Taking place in an alternate dimension accessed through the Hellmouth on the Moon, the Raid takes Guardians through a pit of darkness to the resting place of Crota himself. […]

  • Xenoblade Chronicles 3D trailer introduces the Heir to the Monado

    Xenoblade Chronicles 3D protagonist Shulk is the Heir to the Monado, his distinctive red sword. Let this trailer fill you in on what that means. Xenoblade Chronicles 3D releases for New 3DS on April 2 in Europe and April 10 in North America. As well as all the content of the Wii original, it has […]

  • The Elder Scrolls: Total War mod covers Morrowind, Oblivion and more

    The Elder Scrolls: Total War is a terrific mod allowing you get get intimately involved with the history of Bethesda’s detailed fantasy universe. The first release of The Elder Scrolls: Total War dropped on the weekend, giving players their first chance to try out LoRdNazgu1‘s creation. This version runs from 3E 427 to 4E 45, […]

  • Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 out now on Steam

    Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 is out now. Yes, we’re surprised too. You can grab Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 on Steam for $8. Developer Scott Cawthon really doesn’t mess about; the game was only announced in early January. Here’s the blurb: Thirty years after Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza closed it’s doors, the events that took […]

  • EVE Online heister makes off with $13,000 worth of goods

    EVE Online is a hotbed of villainy, espionage and backstabbing, but one intrepid corporate thief has made waves even in this setting. The thing about EVE Online is that it’s a true sandbox: the game’s rules are very loose, and allow players to make careers out of theft, piracy, assassination and espionage in addition to […]

  • Marth Amiibo getting a stock refresh in North America

    Nintendo of America has announced a fresh supply of the difficult to find Marth Amiibo. The Marth Amiibo will be back in stock in the US in late April, the platform holder said on Twitter today. Planning to pick up Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. and don’t have a Marth amiibo? More are headed to stores in […]

  • Skyrim beta update upgrades creation kit file size

    Skyrim has been granted a new beta update – more than three years after launch! – to improve the experience for modders and those who use them. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim released in November 2011. I think that’s worth noting before we discuss the beta update that dropped today, even as Bethesda is working […]

  • Paradox’s next epic RPG is, uh, Knights of Pen & Paper 2

    Knights of Pen & Paper 2 is very serious business so please enjoy this very serious trailer. “Return to the dicey world of Knights of Pen & Paper for a new turn-based adventure, where players get to take on the role of players, and also of the game’s encounter-designing, rules-laywering GM in a fully customizable […]

  • Amplitude looks amazing in new gameplay trailer, has a team multiplayer mode

    Amplitude may have been delayed but we still get something this March: a fine new gameplay trailer. Amplitude is coming to PlayStation 3 and PS4 sometime in northern summer. It’s a reprisal of Harmonix’s classic rhythm action game, a forerunner to its later efforts with Guitar Hero and Rock Band, and was crowdfunded. Update: Turns […]

  • DayZ creator’s “crazy”, “esoteric” next game developed with Improbable

    DayZ creator Dean “Rocket” Hall has dropped the first vague details of his new game project. “I do not want to make safe games. I do not want to make games the way we have been making them. What if the most experienced video game staff in the world collaborated on the most esoteric and […]

  • Battlefield Hardline will support AMD’s Mantle

    AMD has confirmed what most Battlefield fans thought. Battlefield Hardline will indeed support Mantle. Battlefield Hardline will support Mantle, AMD has confirmed. Some players weren’t sure whether the retail version of the game will support AMD’s API, due to its absence from the recent PC beta. AMD did not say whether the feature will be […]

  • Unreal Engine 4 GDC 2015 sizzle reel shows what the tech can do

    Unreal Engine 4 is a pretty versatile bit of tech, as this new sizzle reel shows. As one of the more ubiquitous engines, Unreal will be on show at GDC this week. Developer Epic produced the following sizzle reel to quickly demonstrate what it can do – cutting edge graphics (there are very few games […]

  • Survarium’s latest patch removes limit on battle ammo, rebalances experience gain

    The latest Survarium patch has readjusted the value of experience and reputation points gained and removed the limit to the maximum amount of ammo you can use in combat. Survarium developer Vostok Games has released patch 0.27a to the public, having recently finished testing it. The patch is a major one and covers changes to […]

  • The Hunt Begins in new Bloodborne TV spot

    Bloodborne is so close you can almost smell its coppery tang on the wind – and also you can watch commercials for it. Bloodborne arrives on PS4 at the end of this month (March 24 North America, March 25 Europe, March 27 UK) so excitement is starting to build. Sony isn’t helping keep us calm […]

  • World of Warcraft: you’ll soon be able to buy game time with gold

    Blizzard will soon allow World of Warcraft players to exchange in-game gold for game time and vice versa. Blizzard has announced a new system that will launch soon for World of Warcraft. The system is called WoW Token. Using this system, players will be able to buy game time using in-game gold. Here’s how it […]