‘Halo Infinite’ Season 2 will let players earn premium currency

Credits will appear in the Season 2 Battlepass

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343 Industries is updating its rewards system to allow Halo Infinite players to earn premium currency, starting in Season 2.

John Junyszek, senior community manager at 343 Industries, shared a post on how the change to the way players can obtain premium cosmetics will work (spotted by PCGamer).

“Thanks to your continued feedback, we are happy to confirm Credits will be earnable in Season 2’s Battle Pass. That means you will be able to earn Credits as part of your Halo Infinite progression. We’ll have more to share on this as we get closer to Season 2.”

This change comes after many players criticised Halo Infinite’s premium cosmetic pricing, which is something that Junyszek also addressed in the post:

Halo Infinite. Credit: 343 Industries

“Since launch, the team has been monitoring the discussions on the Shop, bundles, and pricing in the game. Using data and community feedback, we’ve begun rolling out changes to how we package and price items in the Shop this week.”

A point of contention for the Halo Infinite players was that items came in bundles, this meant that if a player wanted one specific item, they would have to pay out for the entire bundle.

He added that: “our focus with these changes is on reducing pricing across the board, providing stronger values in our bundles, starting to put individual items outside of bundles, and more. This week we focused on reducing the prices of our weekly bundles, while next week will have individual items starting to appear on their own.

“We will be trying new things throughout the rest of the season so that we can continue to learn and improve for the future. Please keep the feedback coming during this process.”

In other news, a vulnerability in Dark Souls 3 has been discovered that could allow bad actors to execute code on another players PC. To combat the issue, all PvP servers on PC have been disabled by FromSoftware.

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Steam Deck now supports Easy Anti-Cheat games

Easy Anti-Cheat games include ‘Apex Legends’ and ‘Battlefield 2042’

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Valve has released an update to developers that announced Easy Anti-Cheat is now compatible with Steam Deck software.

A post from Valve provides details of the support and should allow many games to be supported on the Steam Deck with minimal input from the developers.

“Our team has been working with Epic on Easy Anti-Cheat + Proton support over the last few months, and we’re happy to announce that adding Steam Deck support to your existing EAC games is now a simple process, and doesn’t require updating game binaries, SDK versions, or integration of EOS. Alongside our BattlEye updates from last year, this means that the two largest anti-cheat services are now easily supported on Proton and Steam Deck.”

Steam Deck. Credit: Valve

The post also includes a link for developers using BattlEye or Easy Anti-Cheat to follow, with documentation on how to enable Proton support (via PCGamesN).

“Related to this, we’re going to start submitting Deck Verified test data for tested titles that use anti-cheat middleware on Monday, January 24. As with all other Deck Verified reviews, when the test data is submitted you’ll receive an email notification and access to detailed Deck Verified data on the landing page for your game. Once this happens, you’ll have one week to choose to publish the test data as-is or submit a new build for review, after which the data will automatically publish.”

Recently a list of officially verified games for the Steam Deck was released. The list is curated by Valve and has strict criteria. Some games do not get the verification because of issues like small text.

In other news, a vulnerability in Dark Souls 3 has been discovered that could allow bad actors to execute code on another players PC. To combat the issue, all PvP servers on PC have been disabled by FromSoftware.

 

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‘Apex Legends’ teases Maggie as Season 12 Legend

Fuze mains better watch out

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Respawn is teasing the twelfth season of Apex Legends with an in-game dog fight that leaves a clue regarding the next character to be added.

The current season of Apex Legends is drawing to a close, and season 12 is set to begin on February 8. So far every season has included a new Legend that players can unlock and take into the battle royale and arena modes, and it appears that Respawn has provided a clue to the next one (via Dextero).

On the new map, Apex Legends players have been witnessing dogfights in the sky. When the fight is over, a piece of debris falls onto the map. The debris appears to be a part of a spacecraft and it bears the sigil of Salvo, the homeworld of the Legend Fuze who joined the games in season 8.

However, when Fuze was introduced, Respawn also revealed his nemesis: Maggie. She has a bone to pick with Fuze, and even rigged the entirety of Kings Canyon with explosives to try and kill him. Given that she is the only other major character revealed to be from Salvo, it is highly likely that she is the next legend coming to the game.

Respawn has tricked players before though. In a previous season, an Apex Legends character was announced, and data miners found files detailing their abilities. But, in an animated trailer, Respawn killed that character and revealed Revenant as the next new legend instead.

Though it currently seems likely that Maggie will be the next Legend, it’s not certain until Respawn confirm it, which should be coming soon.

In other news, a vulnerability in Dark Souls 3 has been discovered that could allow bad actors to execute code on another players PC. An update has confirmed that PvP servers for the trilogy are now offline as the issue is being investigated.

 

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‘Cyberpunk 2077’ QA lead leaves the developer after 11 years

“Last month I decided to leave CD Projekt RED after [a] great 11 years there”

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The quality assurance (QA) lead at Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red has announced they are leaving the company.

Łukasz Babiel announced the news on his Twitter, saying: “I really worked with the best people”.

The veteran member of CD Projekt Red worked at the company for 11 years and helped develop games such as Gwent, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and Cyberpunk 2077.

In a Tweet that confirmed the news, Babiel said. “Last month I decided to leave CD Projekt RED after [a] great 11 years there. I’ve got these amazing gifts as a farewell – 3D printed and hand-painted figure and a comic by two talented Polish authors, which just melted my heart. I really worked with the best people.”

He shared two images, one showing a custom figure displaying Babiel in Johnny Silverhand’s outfit from Cyberpunk 2077 and a comic page that used his likeness.

Babiel started at CD Projekt Red in 2010 when he joined the developer as a beta tester. He then continued to become the Cyberpunk 2077 QA lead in 2017. During his time in this role, he managed a team of over 60 employees, planned testing, introduced pipelines, and worked closely with lead produces and studio directors, according to his LinkedIn.

A recent mod added survival game mechanics to Cyberpunk 2077. Called Live In Night City, the mod adds fatigue, hunger, and thirst levels. If the player’s needs aren’t met, they will suffer stat penalties. If fatigue gets too high, which comes from not sleeping or taking a shower, critical hit chance and stamina regeneration suffer. System malfunctions can also occur, creating flashes or forcing the player to the ground on normal/hard difficulty.

In other news, a vulnerability in Dark Souls 3 has been discovered that could allow bad actors to execute code on another player’s PC. Though the exploit can be guarded against with anti-cheat software, the problem could also impact next month’s in Elden Ring.

 

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‘WikiTrivia’ is a browser game where you have to organise world history

Learn while you procrastinate

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WikiTrivia is an open-source game in which the player needs to organise cards with world history and events on, in the correct chronological order.

To start, you will have one card with a date on it. You then get a second card with an event and have to place it before or after the existing card. Then you get a new card. This is the gameplay loop of WikiTrivia (first spotted by RockPaperShotgun).

Each round begins simply, with rough general guesses often being good enough to get a good result, but as cards are added to the timeline, the gaps you have to fill get narrower. Each run gives you three lives and if you lose all of them it is game over. The goal is to improve your personal streak and get as many correct cards as possible.

One example is sorting when Syracuse was created, between the founding of Gascony, and the final season of Game Of Thrones. Another situation involves deciding which came first, Sean Connery’s birth, or the photograph “Lunch Atop A Skyscraper”. If you get an answer wrong, you will still be shown the correct date and can then sort other events around it. The three types of events are “Created”, “Born”, and “Ended”.

In other news, Raven Software employees have officially unionised. The Game Workers Alliance (GWA) is a new union that has been launched with the help of the ABK Workers Alliance, which helped organise the ongoing strike and set up a GoFundMe for the staff.

A mission statement on the GWA website adds that the union focuses “on improving the conditions of workers in the video game industry by making it a more sustainable, equitable place where transparency is paramount. Additionally, we advocate for our disenfranchised and minority workers by creating a diverse space to let their voices be heard in solidarity.”

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‘Assassin’s Creed’ series originally ended on a spaceship

Assassin’s Creed in space would be pretty cool…

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Details of the original ending for Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed series have been revealed and involved Desmond and Lucy escaping to space.

The original ideas from Assassin’s Creed co-creator Patrice Désilets have been published by Lars de Wildt, a researcher of conspiracy theories and religious beliefs in digital media.

As reported by Eurogamer, de Wildt interviewed various former Assassin’s Creed developers for their PhD. One of the interesting details that came from the interviews was the original ending for the characters of Desmond and Lucy.

“The original plan was pieced together based on interviews by me with Assassins Creed‘s original creator Patrice Désilets and Assassin’s Creed 3‘s creative director Alex Hutchinson,” de Wildt wrote.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Credit: Ubisoft

“Briefly put, the third game would end with a resolution of the conflict in the present day, with Desmond Miles taking down Abstergo using the combined knowledge and skills of all his ancestors, including Assassin’s Creed‘s Altair and Assassin’s Creed 2‘s Ezio.”

Speaking to Eurogamer today, Assassin’s Creed 3 creative director Alex Hutchinson shared detail of the discussion with de Wildt, and how the original plans to wrap up the series had involved a modern-day showdown.

“Also, it is the end of the world in 2012, and Desmond Miles and Lucy are starting a new civilisation somewhere else – as Adam and Eve,” said de Wildt

“That’s why she’s called Lucy, after the Australopithecus afarensis,” Désilets told de Wildt in an interview. Desmond and Lucy would then escape the apocalypse in “a freaking spaceship!” according to Désilets.

In other news, Raven Software employees have officially unionised. The Game Workers Alliance (GWA) is a new union that has been launched with the help of the ABK Workers Alliance, which helped organise the ongoing strike and set up a GoFundMe for the staff.

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‘Pokémon Legends: Arceus’ is now available to preload

The download size is 6GB

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Pokémon Legends: Arceus releases next week and is now available to download. Preorders come with a free set of 30 Heavy Balls.

The upcoming open-world Pokémon Legends: Arceus is now available to preload on the Nintendo Switch. The information was spotted and tweeted by Serebii.net.

The game will be available in a staggered rollout by region. Players can now purchase the game and download it in advance of the release on January 28, when the game will be playable. All players who download the game from the eShop before Match will receive a serial code for 30 Heavy Balls. The download size is 6GB, so make sure you have enough space on your console.

Early impressions of Pokémon Legends: Arceus have begun to surface as well. “It’s safe to say that this game is completely different from previous titles. The first thing that impressed me when I started playing was the exhilarating feeling of moving around freely in the vast field,” said one.

The same report discusses a boss battle against brand new Pokémon, Kleavor, which saw the player attempting to hit the creature with food to calm it down. It was described as “surprisingly difficult for a Pokémon game”.

Arceus’ new battling system “successfully combines the action of this title with traditional Pokémon battles, said Game Watch. [It’s] highly accomplished, and I especially appreciate the fact that Pokémon battles are ‘a means to a different end’, which fits the worldview of the game.”

In other news, Raven Software employees have officially unionised. The Game Workers Alliance (GWA) is a new union that has been launched with the help of the ABK Workers Alliance, which helped organise the ongoing strike and set up a GoFundMe for the staff.

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Blindfolded ‘Sekiro’ speedrunner explains his strategies

“Someone was going to do it eventually, so I wanted to give it a shot”

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Mitchriz completed Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice blindfolded during Awesome Games Done Quick 2022 and has shared how he accomplished it.

“I knew I could do it blindfolded, or at least do all the bosses blindfolded. Someone was going to do it eventually, so I wanted to give it a shot.” Mitchriz explained to Fanbyte. “It’s not like Dark Souls where there’s the stamina and the rolling and it’s hard to navigate, Sekiro is very consistent. Everyone had the feeling that it could be done. I wanted to be the first person to do it.”

To complete the speed run, Mitchriz needed to rely on his memory of the game and the audio cues provided to him. Using these, he achieved the game’s bad “shura”, ending in just over two hours while unable to see the screen.

“Exploring is just a set of movements that I’ve memorised — a set number of dashes, a set ‘turn this way,’ a set slash this direction, I try not to count to a certain number, but that can work if you get yourself stuck.”

Many of the boss fights in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice are complicated but can be learned over time as foes use consistent attack patterns.

“As soon as that perfect fight goes wrong, like I lose the lock-on, he runs away instead of attacking me, he does whatever else, it pretty much becomes that I now have to fight him the same way as sighted. I know how to fight him sighted, which means I don’t need to really see him to do it. I can hear him. I know that sound means he’s running away, that grunt means he’s about to do an overhead slam. I have a plan, but that improvisation is just a part of speedrunning.”

Mitchriz also said that a blindfolded playthrough aiming for the best ending could be challenging because of the Fountainhead Plaza section. Here players have to swim past a giant carp, and the additional dimension of movement is an extra obstacle when blindfolded.

In other news, a Cyberpunk 2077 mod adds survival mechanics such as hunger, thirst and sleep requirements.

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‘Life Is Strange: Remastered Collection’ Nintendo Switch version delayed

Switch users have more time to prepare their feelings

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The Life Is Strange: Remastered Collection arrives on consoles next month; however, the Nintendo Switch version has been delayed until later this year.

The news was announced on Twitter in a tweet from the official Life Is Strange account. It said: “Hello, Life Is Strange fans!

“We have an update for you regarding the Life Is Strange: Remastered Collection. The collection will still be hitting Google Stadia, PlayStation, Xbox and PC On February 1, as previously announced. We have a wealth of preview goodies for both titles planned before launch, starting with an extended look next Tuesday!

“However, we are sorry to share that the Nintendo Switch versions of the Games have been a little set back and will need a bit more time until they are ready, so will be releasing later this year. We hope you understand, and look forward to playing them.

“Thank you for your patience and support. The Life Is Strange team.”

The collection allows players to experience Dontnod’s original Life Is Strange with improvements such as visual upgrades for characters and fully motion-captured facial animation.

The collection also includes the Before The Storm prequel, developed by Deck Nine, which has also seen some visual improvements. It also contains outfits exclusive to the deluxe edition of Before The Storm and the Farewell extra episode.

There is no new release date for the Nintendo Switch version of the Life Is Strange: Remastered Collection, but it is currently promised for some time this year.

In other news, a new report has revealed the extensive level of crunch developers at TT Games underwent during the development of LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga. Staff were reportedly pressured into crunch, with one former employee saying, “It was very soft-spoken blackmail. If people don’t start doing overtime, there’s going to be problems.”

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‘Hitman 3’ Year 2 out now – adds Elusive Target Arcade and PC VR support

Hitman Trilogy is now available through Game Pass

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IO Interactive has released the Year 2 patch for Hitman 3 which adds a new Elusive Target Arcade, PCVR support, and more.

The Hitman 3 patch is available now on all platforms and is between 2GB and 3.5GB.

The first new feature added to Hitman 3 is the Elusive Target Arcade, which allows players to take on the games Elusive Targets at any time.

The patch notes say that “the three contracts will be permanently available via the Arcade, whether you succeed or not. If you succeed in all missions of a given Arcade Contract, you’ll be able to ‘reset’ the contract and immediately play from the start. Failure at any point is met with a 12-hour lockout.” To go with the new mode, a new weapon has been added. The Krugermeier 2-2 Dark can be unlocked by completing any one of the Arcade Contracts.

Next up is PCVR support. Players on PC can now enjoy any of the three Hitman games with full VR and motion control support.

Finally, Hitman 3 is available to purchase on Steam. “We’ll manually be pressing the buttons to release Hitman 3 Standard Edition, Hitman 3 Deluxe Edition and Hitman Trilogy on the Steam Store. This will allow us to coordinate the release at a time that fits with IOI in Copenhagen and Valve in Seattle. There won’t be any ‘coming soon’ page before this time, so we’ll be going from 0-100 once those buttons are pressed. The expected download size for Hitman 3 is 65GB.”

In other news, a new report has revealed the extensive level of crunch developers at TT Games underwent during the development of LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga. Staff were reportedly pressured into crunch, with one former employee saying, “It was very soft-spoken blackmail. If people don’t start doing overtime, there’s going to be problems.”

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