Illustration by Marsh Davies All week long, we're peering ahead to what the future holds for the PC gaming industry. Not just the hardware and software in our rigs, but how and where we use them, and how they impact the games we play. Here's part one of our five-part series; stay tuned all week for more from the future of PC gaming. If anyone can direct and dictate the course of PC gaming for the next 10 years, it's Valve. The creators of Steam—and a little game called Half-Life—have already changed how we get our games, and the prices we're willing to pay for them. Now the company is going one step further, with an initiative that will expand where PC games are played.It's a plan comprised of three parts: SteamOS , the open-source operating system compiled by Valve and running on the Linux kernel; Steam Machines , PCs that are custom-built for living in an entertainment center; and Steam Controller , Valve's solution to the input issues that have made living room … [Read more...] about The future of PC gaming: the living room
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It’s been 15 years since Royal Protector and Master Assassin Corvo Attano was framed for the murder of his Empress. Her daughter, Emily, was stolen away and a cruel Regent put in her place. Now, Emily rules over her small empire, with Corvo watching over her. Unfortunately for the pair, as Dishonored 2 begins, history starts to repeat itself. Dishonored 2 has every chance of joining our list of the best PC gaming has to offer. Betrayal, usurpers, a nasty frame job – familiar story beats make this The Force Awakens to Dishonored’s A New Hope. But if you’re concerned that this means Arkane’s sequel is a bit conservative, don’t be. Dishonored 2 is one of the best stealth-action games ever made. Much of what made the original game such a success has been thankfully retained, but at double the size. Emily and Corvo’s new adventure has allowed the developers to lavish it with improvements and unexpected twists, leaving it as novel as it … [Read more...] about Dishonored 2 PC review
The Evil Within 2 has kept me up at night. The culprit is a recurring vision that has managed to escape the game and embed itself, rather nastily, in my subconscious. It is of a pile of severed corpses assembling themselves into a cackling, writhing mass of limbs and faces - they do this all by themselves, gliding eerily across the floor at first before snapping into place like iron filings around a magnet. Related: The Evil Within 2’s crafting, weapons, and upgrades explained. In spite of some (hopefully) temporary mental scarring, I have thoroughly enjoyed every nightmarish minute of The Evil Within 2. This is far more than a throwback to the haunting atmosphere and pacing of Resident Evil 4, The Evil Within 2 is entirely its own horror experience: visually arresting, deeply unsettling, and riveting from start to finish. Gone are tedious horror tropes like out-of-control psychiatric hospitals and brutes with chainsaws. They are replaced by mind-bending P.T.-esque … [Read more...] about The Evil Within 2 PC review
There have been so many beautiful and clever games appear in the past two years that I find myself surprised to be saying this: Planetside 2 is my favourite game of the past two years. Sure, I’ve practically lived off Teleglitch at times, and actually been made to like an adventure game via KRZ, but Planetside’s bright and sparkly sequel has truly colonised my PC. Can a sci-fi shooter sequel really have been the game that held my attention for the longest? There have been prettier games, there have been smarter games, games which were more innovative, moving, or simply better designed. But SOE’s giant red-blue-purple MMOFPS has been the one for me. It’ll be two years old in a couple of months, and I like it more now than I did when it launched. What’s going on?I’ve not been playing the game for the entire two years it’s been around, admittedly. I had a crack when it started, enjoyed it very much, got buried in work and swore I’d go back … [Read more...] about Planetside 2: My Favourite Game Of The Past Two Years
Just two weeks into this feature highlighting stuff that you can play for free, I'm convinced that working on it is going to save me a small fortune. It's true that these games often end up costing me a few dollars here and there when I decide that I like them enough to buy into their premium offerings, but canceling two of my three MMO subscriptions will save me more than enough money to cover that. (The Secret World is the one that I plan to keep going for the moment, in case you're curious.) When I wasn't leveling up in Funcom's latest, these were the free games and demos I was playing this week: Released for the iPad and iPhone just yesterday, Outwitters is a turn-based strategy game that pits sea creatures (free), robots (premium), and "adorables" (premium) against each other in battles that are deceptively deep. After playing for just a few hours I'm not ready to declare that Outwitters is the new chess or anything crazy like that, but I will say that it demands much the … [Read more...] about Free Play Friday: Cave Exploration, Turn-Based Strategy, and Tanks!