Some inquisitive fellows on NeoGaf have been raiding the Steam content registry for clues, and seem to have come across some entries suggesting that that Alan Wake may be heading to PC.
In further support of the Alan Wake PC release rumours, Just Push Start spotted an interview on Finnish site YLEX in which Aki Järvilehto from Remedy said "we have received feedback from a lot of PC gamers, and I have to admit that yes, we somehow ignored that. Let’s see if in the near future we could have some positive news to tell you about dating!" We love positive news about dating!
Way back in 2006, Alan Wake was the poster boy for Intel's Core 2 Duo CPU, and was regularly demoed on PC to show off its multi-threading tech. Then, all of a sudden, it became an Xbox 360 exclusive, and the PC version vanished. As a PC version was worked on heavily in the run up to its release, it theoretically shouldn't be too hard to resurrect it for a Steam release. It'd coincide nicely with the downloadable Alan Wake follow up story, Alan Wake's American Nightmare, which is heading to the Xbox 360 early next year.
It's not just Alan Wake haunting the Steam registry files. DIY Gamer have spotted evidence of a very tasty new Humble Bundle. The registry entry suggests that a new bundle may include Super Meat Boy, BIT.TRIP.RUNNER, Jamestown, Nightsky and Shank as a starting lineup, with Gratuitous Space Battles and Cave Story+ to be added after the bundle has kicked off. If accurate, that's a fantastic collection. How much would you pay for that bundle, and would you like to see Alan Wake come to Steam?
What would the word be like in a hundred years time if the leaders of the major nations in The Great War never called it a day. There would be gratuitous giant robots, of course, tanks, trenches, laser beams and huge flamethrower towers at strategic intervals. See all of these in action in the latest trailer for Gratuitous Tanks Battles, spotted over on RPS.
It's predecessor, Gratuitous Space Battles almost destroyed Tom Hatfield's brain with its build-focused brand of strategy. GSB was all about tailoring the set up of each of your ships. Once they were in battle, they acted on their own, and all you could do was sit back and see how your carefully laid plans played out. Gratuitous Tanks Battles will require more involvement. As a defending player, you must place and upgrade your defensive towers sensibly to repel the waves of enemy tanks. As an attacker, you have to choose set up your forces, choose their routes through the battlefield and focus their fire.
Creator Cliff Harris also mentions on the Gratuitous Tank Battles site that "a built-in map editor will allow easy sharing of custom maps and defensive challenges with other GTB players in a similar fashion to GSB's challenge system." Which is great news unless you happen to be Hatfield's brain. The trailer says it's out "soon-ish," the site says it'll be out before the end of this year.
Positech Games, the one man studio behind Kudos, Democracy and Gratuitous Space Battles, has announced its newest title, Gratuitous Tank Battles. Set in an alternate future where a war has been raging for 200 years, the game promises "It'll all be over by Christmas 2114."
“I suppose what I really want is Blackadder Goes Forth with lasers,” said Cliff Harris, the man behind Positech, speaking to RockPaperShotgun. The official website claims "Soldiers still fight in the trenches of the Somme, although rifles have (mostly) become laser rifles and giant armored mechs stride across no-mans land."
Gratuitous Space Battles saw players customising a fleet of ships with instructions and loadouts before seeing how they would perform in a hands off battle. Gratuitous Tank Battles looks set to build upon the previous game's successes while offering a significantly different experience. GSB's emphasis on customisation and sharing your unique fleets with other players will return. Positech are also planning to introduce visual customisation to units and editable maps. Significant differences include asymmetrical warfare. Players can switch between defending - which will play a bit like a tower defence game, and attackers who will outfit and direct the men attacking.
Above all Gratuitous Tank Battles promises to involve games on the same massive scale as it's predecessor, with Harris telling RockPaperShotgun “I hate how usually these games start so slowly, with just a couple of units, or one tower. What you want is hundreds of units right away, and therefore hundreds of explosions. That just makes for a better game.”
Gratuitous Tank Battles is slated for release in the fourth quarter of 2011.
Gratuitous Space Battles provides a hands-off take on massive space battles. You customise your entire fleet, right down to the weapons and shields on each ship, and then set them up in formation and set them loose on the enemy. It combines chin-stroking strategic planning with explosive space-blam on a massive scale. The latest expansion adds new graphics, a single player campaign that lets you fight fleets designed by other players, and the ability to capture enemy ships.
Here's a list of the new features added by the latest expansion.
Mid-battle fleet-wide 'retreat' option Post-battle repairs You can scrap ships to reclaim the crew and a part of the construction cost Shipyards, in 3 different sizes Factories produce cash, academies produce crew Repair yards fix your ships after battle Enemy ships can be captured once victory is declared Loyalty and threat levels modelled for each of your worlds Attack and move fleets between systems only through established hyperspace wormholes Three difficulty settings, to suit all levels of player New campaign-specific manual to instruct would-be galactic conquerors New campaign music 'Massively singleplayer' feature pits you against fleets designed by other players Lots of new background graphics and planets to fight over Spatial anomalies force you to fight some battles in adverse conditions, or with limited ship choices
The expansion's available now on Steam and from the Positech Games site. For more on the game, head over to the Gratuitous Space Battles site. If you like the idea of massive space battles without fiddly mid-battle micromanagement you might want to check out the demo.