PC Gamer

Linelight is a minimalist puzzle game with a very simple premise: Guide a small point of light named Dash along a line. No jumping, no shooting—just movement. It is, as you might expect, deceptively simple.   

The visual style and relaxing music and sound effects remind me a bit of Flow, the meditative predator-prey sim from That Game Company. Each puzzle is small (although naturally, they grow in complexity as you progress) and purely logical, and new mechanics are introduced very leisurely and organically, to the point that I was sometimes picking up on them before I even realized that I was learning something. 

"Linelight simulates the experience of getting an A+ on an exceptionally hard test while receiving a back massage," developer Brett Taylor of one-man studio My Dog Zorro claimed on Steam. "The gameplay is simultaneously unique and intuitive enough that gamers, non-gamers, your technology-illiterate relatives, tweens, rocket scientists, a potato with googly eyes and toothpicks for arms, and even line connoisseurs are all on the same playing field of challenge." 

I can't vouch for the puzzle-solving skills of googly-eyed potatoes, but I've made through about 40 of Linelight's puzzles, and I'm really enjoying it so far. It's very clever at times, and more importantly it's the sort of game I can play for literally any length of time—as little as a minute or two—and still come away feeling like I've accomplished something.  Despite the simplicity of its design, Linelight is a hefty thing too, with an estimated six hours of gameplay in more than 250 puzzles spread across six game worlds. It's available now for $9 on Steam, ten percent off the regular $10 price, until February 7.   

PC Gamer

The Fallout 4 1.9 update is now available as a beta on Steam. The update adds support for the High Resolution Texture Pack revealed yesterday, makes a few fixes, and adds a number of new features that will make life easier for wasteland warriors who like to play with mods. 

The full list

NEW FEATURES  

  • Support for High Resolution Texture Pack
  • Added Featured category for mods
  • Added ability to sort Highest Rated and Most Favorited filters by today, week, month and all time
  • Added number of ratings count to Mods Browsing Menu
  • Added number of favorites count to Mod Details page
  • Added required dependencies to Mod Details page
  • Added latest version number and notes to Mod Details page

FIXES

  • General performance and stability improvements
  • Improvements to Reporting mods categories
  • Fixed occasional crashes while scrolling through Load Order menu
  • Improved Bethesda.net error messaging

Bethesda confirmed that the 1.9 update doesn't actually include the High Resolution Texture Pack, which will be released separately next week, but merely prepares the game to support it. Don't forget that you'll need some serious hardware to take advantage of the pack once it does go live, The recommended spec is a Core i7 CPU, an 8GB GTX 1080 video card, and a whopping 58GB of hard drive space.

To access the beta update, if you're not already taking part, you'll need to right-click on Fallout 4 in your Steam library, select Settings, then the Betas tab, and then "Beta" from the dropdown menu. After an update, the game will be listed as "Fallout 4 [Beta]" in your library. Feedback on any issues you may encounter should be reported in Bethesda's Fallout forums.

PC Gamer

It turns out that the dataminers who discovered the Morrowind map hidden in The Elder Scrolls Online last month were on to something. Bethesda just announced as part of a livestream that The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind, a "sweeping adventure" through the strange, magical land of Vvardenfell, is scheduled for release on June 6. And in fine Elder Scrolls fashion, the fate of the world once again comes down to you: "Morrowind is in dire peril and it’s up to player heroes to help Vivec, the legendary warrior-poet and Guardian of Vvardenfell, solve the mystery of his mysterious illness, regain his strength—and save the world from ultimate destruction." 

Vvardenfell will be the largest zone added to TESO since it was released, and will feature the same "geographic footprint" and primary points of interest as the original Morrowind—including a city of Vivec that, since this game takes place roughly seven centuries before the events of Morrowind, is still under construction. New players can begin their adventures in Vvardenfell without having to complete other TESO content first, while the level-scaling introduced in last year's One Tamriel update means veterans who head to the island will have level-appropriate content waiting for them right from the start.   

The expansion will also introduces TESO's first new class, the Warden, who wields "nature-based magic" and is backed up in fights by the War Bear, a powerful new animal ally. There will also be a new PvP mode included called Battlegrounds, which features 4v4v4 fights in arena-like environments in the Ashlands. 

The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind includes The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited base game and will sell for $60, or it can be had as an upgrade for existing players for $40. A digital collector's edition with various bonus bits like a grey War Bear, an armored horse, and Morag Tong customizations is also available as an upgrade or standalone purchase, as is a $100 physical collector's edition that comes with all of the above plus a Dwarven Colossus statue, map of Morrowind, and an illustrated journal of Naryu, a Morag Tong assassin. Preordering any edition will also get you the Discovery Pack, with various in-game bonuses including an exclusive Warden costume and a Vvardenfell treasure map.

Big bear!

PC Gamer

According to Fact Mag, a collection of ambient and deep house music from Dark Souls sound designer Yuji Takenouchi will be reissued in a compilation this March.  

Titled Brand New Day, the compilation collects three EPs recorded under the name Mr. YT, each released between 1997 and 1998: Brand New Day, Southern Paradise, and Parfum.

While the Dark Souls connection is indirect, it's easy to hear Takenouchi's appreciation for subtlety. Take a listen for yourself in the sampler below. None of the tracks would blow out your speakers, but the combination of deep bass, hypnotic samples, and steady rhythms make it nearly impossible not to move.

Brand New Day will be available March 10, but if the sampler helped you make up your mind, it's available for preorder here

PC Gamer

"Knowledge is power," so goes the famous aphorism attributed to the 16th century philosopher Sir Francis Bacon. This is a handy phrase to carry through life—unless of course you live within the lovely-looking isometric ARPG world of Quote, where, at the behest of Bliss the god of ignorance, you must eradicate all forms of knowledge in order to save the world. 

Quote is out now on Early Access and celebrates with the following trailer. 

Filling the shoes of Novella, the priestess of Bliss, it's up to you to "purify the world of knowledge" by way of murdering its authors, burning its books and, goodness, "bludgeoning the thoughts from the heretics' heads." 

"As Novella, priestess of Bliss, you must purify the world of knowledge," explains developer Vindit. "Bludgeon the thoughts from the heretics' heads, burn every book, kill every author. It’s the only way to save the world from itself." 

With fully-voiced narration, hand-drawn artwork, and over 40 unlockable abilities, Quote draws inspiration from classic literature and surrealist art (and a healthy dose of the devs' imaginations, I dare say), and paints a weird but stunning world around its equally unorthodox premise.

"2017 seems an appropriate time to be launching a game about a world in which truth and knowledge have been eradicated," says Vindit founder Robin Lacey. "We’ve been building Quote for over two years already, working hard to make something very special—a unique world and story, all clad in darkly delicious, hand-drawn art. We’re so excited that people are finally about to see what we’ve been up to."

If any of that tickles your fancy, Quote is out now on Steam's Early Access platform—where it's subject to a 15 percent limited time discount and costs £9.34/$12.74.

PC Gamer

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare's first DLC pack, named Sabotage, lands today on PS4 consoles. It's due at some point down the line for PC and brings with it four new multiplayer maps. 

Such as Noir, a futuristic Brooklyn-set arena; Neon, the "Z-shaped digital city" you'll spot below; Dominion, a reimagining of the classic Modern Warfare 2 Afghan map; and Renaissance, which is staged in and around the lazy canals of Venice.

All of that looks like this: 

Further to all that, Sabotage comes packing the recently revealed '90s horror-themed 'Rave in the Redwoods' Zombies stuff, which stars Jay and Silent Bob's Kevin Smith. 

As a timed PS4-exclusive there's no word yet on when we'll see this on PC, however it is coming. In the meantime, a question for all you COD-ers out there: are Sabotage's maps something you're looking forward to?

PC Gamer

As it stands, I'm yet to play Resident Evil 7 with the lights off. I keep promising myself I will, but whenever I sit in front of my PC, I just can't bring myself to flick the switch because I'm such a wuss. It's really rather good, though. If you haven't picked it up already, know that it's going cheaper than anywhere else we've spotted at CDKeys. 

For £24.99/$39.99 you too can sing the praises of electricity and kid yourself on that one day you might, just might, stumble around the dilapidated Baker residence in the dark. I don't believe you, though. 

In other Resi 7 news, the first of two 'Banned Footage' DLCs arrives on PlayStation 4 consoles today—priced £11.99/$14.99—with its follow-up now due February 14. PC players, on the other hand, will be able to access both Banned Footage Vol. 1 and 2 on February 21, with the game's free 'Not a Hero' add-on expected at some point in spring.      

Here's another look at the base game's launch trailer: 

Some online stores give us a small cut if you buy something through one of our links. Read our affiliate policy for more info. 

PC Gamer

Rarely does a week go by when some publisher or retailer isn't giving away a game for free. Spending nothing in exchange for something is great, and this is an especially nice offer: the Humble Store is giving away X-COM: UFO Defense, or for those outside of North America, UFO: Enemy Unknown.

It's the first instalment in the XCOM series, of course, and be forewarned that as far as I can remember it was the first game to make me incredibly angry. The offer is valid for another day and a half, so you'd best go and grab it now before you forget. 

PC Gamer

Less than one week after it began, the Kickstarter campaign for The Banner Saga 3 has achieved its $200,000 goal. That leaves well over a month—36 days, to be exact—to take aim at an interesting stretch goal. 

For $250,000, Stoic will add the Dredge,  which are "humanoid beings supposedly made of stone," as a playable race. In the original Banner Saga, the Dredge were the primary antagonists, and so only appeared as enemy units. As playable units, they'll be available in three classes: Stoneguard, Hurler, and Stonesinger.   

"The Dredge are the colossal, armor clad ancestral enemies of the Varls since the beginning. They are hostile on sight to all other intelligent life," the Banner Saga Wiki explains. "They were formed when one of the gods, jealous of his peers, took their creations and twisted them into something bizarre and unnatural and then set them free to wreak havoc on the land. After some long and bloody wars the Dredge were thought to be extinct, but they started to slowly reappear and no one knows why." 

Stoic said that more information about the lore and history of the Dredge will be revealed in a future update. "This is just the beginning, though! This is when the fun starts and from here on out it’s cherries on top for everyone!" the studio wrote in a Kickstarter update announcing the good news. "We have lots of great stuff planned that we simply didn’t think we’d get a chance to put in the game. Let’s do it together, shall we?" 

The Banner Saga 3 Kickstarter runs until March 7.

PC Gamer

Sure, the Tek Tier update for Ark: Survival Evolved contains goodies like jetpacks, sci-fi weapons and structures, new dinosaurs, and laser cannons you can strap to your T-Rex's head. That all sounds great—provided you like excitement, adventure, and insane laser-dino battles. Personally, I'm more interested in how the patch will change players' faces, since the update is also adding beards that grow in real time and can be cut with craftable scissors.

As a real-life beard-haver, I realized I had a number of questions (eight) about Ark's beards, and so I went to the source for answers. Jesse Rapczak is Co-founder and Co-Creative Director of Studio Wildcard, the developer of Ark. More importantly, Jesse has a beard, and most importantly, he was willing to answer my beard-related queries.

The men AND women of ARK are both veritable beard-growing machines.

PC Gamer: You say beards will grow in real time, but my real beard grows extremely quickly. Meanwhile, I have a friend only has to shave once a month. What type of person are you basing the beard-growth rate on: someone like me who grows hair like a werewolf or someone who barely grows hair on his face at all?

Jesse Rapczak: Hah! Good point. We mean it grows dynamically and smoothly in game, so if you really want to you can sit there and watch your character’s beard go from stubble to something Tom Hanks’ character in Cast Away would be proud of. The men AND women of ARK are both veritable beard-growing machines. Yep, you read that right.

Will server mods be able to adjust beard-growth rates on their servers?

Sure, why not.

If I transfer my bearded character to another server, will his beard remain intact?

Yes, when you transfer your character to another server your hair and beard along with any customizations (like hair dye) will transfer over.

What if I never cut my beard in-game? How long will it grow? By ‘long’ I mean, like, how long time-wise, and how long lengthwise.

In real life you’ll be waiting about 5 hours for your hair to fully grow out and 8 hours for the beard. We want there to be a constant sense of progression without making it too tedious to maintain.

Cutting your hair could save your life!

When I do cut my beard, will the hair be usable as a crafting resource? If so, what could be crafted from beard hair? The only thing I can think to craft from beard hair would be a fake beard. Will I be able to cut off my real beard and craft a fake beard to wear until my real beard grows back?

Human hair is a great resource in ARK, and can be used as a substitute for Pelt. We love this because it means growing out your hair and beard can provide real benefits when you are in a pinch. In fact, cutting your hair could save your life!  

If my character dies and respawns, is beard growth reset?

Yes, hair and beards reset when you die and respawn. New characters always start naked and hairless in ARK!

Will my character’s beard continue to grow while I’m offline? In multiplayer and singleplayer?

No.

Is body hair included?

That sounds like a great idea for a mod! Maybe. 

...

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