Elite: Dangerous – Beta 3 and the Premiere

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(29/10/14) Edit: To see how some of the team at Frontier celebrated the release of Beta 3 check out the clip at the end of this post.

Things are definitely shifting up a gear over at Frontier Developments when it comes to Elite: Dangerous, in the last few weeks they’ve made two major announcements: The imminent release of Beta 3 and the date for their premiere event.

Beta 3

Release of Beta 2 saw huge improvements to Elite: Dangerous, like the overhaul of the graphical user interface or GUI, with the build making an early appearance at EGX London before it landed with players on September 30. Now, exactly a month later comes the next step in the development cycle with the arrival of Beta 3 and it’s a big one.

This time will see the addition of the multiple ship ownership feature, lettin...

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Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor – Orcs Go Wild

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One does not simply walk into Mordor; one sprints, climbs, vaults and dives through it. So Boromir was sort of right I guess? Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor is the story of Talion, a Ranger of Gondor, stationed at the Black Gate which happens to be right at the entrance of the titular shadow-casting place, and of a Wraith who’s memories of who they were in life are conspicuously missing.

I get to know Talion and what he’s capable of through two scenarios: Teaching his son to fight and sneaking up on his wife. One of these two I liked and is a mildly heart-warming, if somewhat violent, attempt at teaching you part of your skill-set, and the other is a clumsily creepy way of teaching you the rest of them; I’ll let you decide which one is which...

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ArenaNet Attempts To Bleed Players Dry For Halloween In Guild Wars 2

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Usually the Halloween update is one that Guild Wars 2 players look forward to as it’s generally bristling with cool cosmetic items and Mad King themed challenges, unfortunately this year ArenaNet decided to thrown in a rather unpleasant and unexpected trick with their bag of treats. Ironically the patch name describes the players general mood on the forums.

Since the beginning Guild Wars 2 has always relied on its Gem/Gold/Money exchange, along with the purchase of cosmetic items, to ensure that the game continues to tick over as part of the buy-to-play structure and players have generally been pretty happy with the way the market worked. Unlike some games that use microtransactions GW2 hasn’t followed in their nickel and diming ways, until now...

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Paranautical Activity Sunk By Steam

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What’s the best way to sabotage your own games’ launch? Death threats to the people helping you of course! Monday saw some amazing crash-and-burn action in the form of what should have been the official Steam release of Paranautical Activity, and ended up with the game being booted off the platform for good.

First-person shooter/Roguelike Paranautical Activity was successfully funded through Kickstarter last year, though this isn’t its first run-in with Steam or Valve. The game had been listed in the platforms Greenlight process where Steam users vote for games that they’d like to see become officially available, usually in an ‘Early Access’ format, unfortunately it wasn’t successful in getting through...

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Skylanders: The Total Cost Of Ownership

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Gavin Average takes a look at the money making machine that is the Skylanders franchise.

My name’s Gavin Average, and I have a problem. It all started innocently enough, when I picked up a pre-owned copy of a video game called Skylanders Giants, the sequel to Skylanders – Spyro’s Adventure. You may have heard of it, I certainly had thanks to a younger relation, who extolled the virtues of the game to me at a family gathering. At 6 years old he is firmly within the target demographic for Skylanders. In my thirties, I am not, or so you’d think…

This isn’t a piece about these games directly, but I will say that I love and thoroughly enjoy them, and I do promise to review each of them for you in the fullness of time...

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Guest Post – When Is Griefing Really Griefing?

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Today’s post was written by Colin Ford who is the producer and presenter of Top Shift, an Elite: Dangerous oriented videocast. He’s also a part-time contributor to Lave Radio and can be contacted via his Twitter account.

We’ve all heard about it on our MMO gaming forums, ‘I hate player X because they’re a griefer or they ganked me’; the main issue I have are people being called ‘griefers’ when they’re not. The first thing I would like to share is my definitions of a griefer:

  1. A player who targets newbie players or players who would stand no chance against them.
  2. A player who stalks another player and attacks and kills them at every opportunity.

Think of ‘WoW-guy’ in the South Park World of Warcarft episode and you kind of get the idea. A spoilsport...

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WoW: The Iron Tide Brings More Than Just The Iron Horde

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Just yesterday saw the release for the bridging patch between Mists of Pandaria and the new World of Warcraft expansion Warlords of Draenor, titled ‘The Iron Tide’ a.k.a. patch 6.0.2. It’s a mammoth of a patch with notes that go on for days with the huge amounts of tweaks and changes, some of the headline features are the arrival of new character models, revamped ‘Group Finder’ utility and the world event dubbed: Iron Horde Incursion.

The Dark Portal in the Blasted Lands has turned blood red. Hundreds of strange-looking orcs are violently pouring into Azeroth, killing everything that stands in their path. Nethergarde and Okril’lon have already fallen, and while the Horde and the Alliance moved as quickly as they could to get reinforcements to their people, they are too late...

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Jagex Announce Hearthstone-esque CCG

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In a time where the popularity of the digital collectible card game (CCG) is on the ascent with Hearthstone featuring prominently amongst them, it seems that Cambridge, UK-based Jagex have decided to take a page out of Blizzard’s book in a very literal fashion. The company revealed over the weekend at RuneFest that they are making their very own CCG based on the game they are best known for, the now 13 year-old MMO RuneScape, with a working title of Chronicle: RuneScape Legends.

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It all looks a little familiar…

The picture above is the only available image of what the game might look like, it demonstrates the ‘living book’ portion of their vision quite well and is step forwards in digital CCG design, seemingly taking it beyond that of an imaginary inn or gaming table...

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Star Citizen’s Grey Market

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Internet spaceships have always been serious business to a very specific corner of our digital world and I can’t pretend that I know even a small fraction of what there is to know about them, but the existence of a ‘grey market’ for a game that isn’t even done yet caught me off guard. I’ve played a few games that feature spaceships, but Eurogamer’s Wesley Yin-Poole has discovered a section of the Star Citizen fanbase that likes to spend thousands of their currency of choice on digital spaceships, not only that, spaceships that you can’t even use or look at yet.

This grey market has evolved from Star Citizen’s business model, which all hinges on their “in-universe” store...

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Xbox Live: Games With Gold In October

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Never one to turn down a freebie, I always look forward to what the Games With Gold program is going to offer up next. Some months have been more generous than others in terms of number of games or just sheer value gained, but this month sees the return of two classics on the Xbox 360 and a little gem from the ID@Xbox initiative on Xbox One. Let’s take a look:

Chariot

Chariot is described by its makers, Frima Originals, as “a couch co-op platformer” that can be played alone or with a friend – “Players take the role of the brave Princess or her faithful Fiancé as they manoeuvre the departed king’s coffin-on-wheels through […] vibrant underground environments, with his majesty’s ghost giving them a piece of his mind every step of the way.”

I love the idea of it being the b...

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