Shacknews - Ozzie Mejia
It's the 50th edition of the Chatty Twitch Highlights and for this week's roundup, we have something a little special. In the wake of last week's Heroes of the Storm beta code giveaway, in which 500 keys found their way into the hands of our loyal readers, Chatty's own DozIR_ hosted a Heroes of the Storm Shackbattle. The result was an intense learning experience, a horde of fallen heroes, and a lot of fun anecdotes. Check it out, along with two more clips, below.
Warning: Some clips may contain NSFW language.
Heroes of the Storm
With at least 500 beta keys going out in the last week, Shacknews isn't short on readers with access to Heroes of the Storm. Our resident MOBA expert, DozIR_, decided to see what the hype was about and host some Heroes of the Storm 5v5 battles, open to all of our loyal Chatty posters. Check out how the game went below.
Chivalry: Medieval Warfare
That's not all for the week's Shackbattles, which appear to be gaining traction over the past few weeks. After getting together for Heroes of the Storm, the Chatty community got together for a bout of Chivalry: Medieval Warfare. Not only did they play some of the main deathmatch modes, but they also dove into some of the different PC modded game modes. That includes Black Knight Mode, which keeps you battling, because it's just a flesh wound, you know. Watch from Hemtroll's Twitch channel here.
Euro Truck Simulator 2
And of course, our Shack Convoy is continuing its trek across the European continent. This week, the Convoy traverses the treacherous snowy conditions to motor on over to Bansky Binsky. Watch as they try and navigate the hazardous blizzard and avoid trying to wipe each other out along the way. Also, as always, there will be a lot of entertaining stories along the way. Watch this one from Hemtroll's Twitch channel here.
For more highlights and live streams, check out the full list of Shacknews Twitch channels.
Shacknews - Shack Staff
Dying Light is Techland’s newest attempt at bringing players into a gore-filled wonderland of chaos, zombies, and fun. This also includes a wide range of fantastic craftable weapons for Kyle Crane, the game’s protagonist, to use and murder things with. I’ve already shown you how to find the EXPcalibur and its appropriate Blueprint. Today I’m going to give you the inside scoop on an even better weapon, the Korek Machete.
First things first you’ll want to head to the c-shaped building I’ve marked on the map below (it is due northwest of the Tower)
Once you arrive you’ll need to locate the air conditioning unit I’ve highlighted below.
Once you’ve located the unit climb onto it, get to the very far right hand corner, and then look behind you to the right to locate a light that you’ll need to jump to.
Once you’re on the light simply climb onto the balcony right beside you, then move to the corner of the building and look towards the middle balcony area with the metal bars. Climb onto them, and climb up until you’re hanging from the top of the railing in the screenshot below.
Once you’re hanging at the top of the railing, look behind you, aim up towards the ledge above, and jump.
With a little luck you’ll find yourself on the top balcony. Move to the center ledge.
Climb onto the side railing here.
Then jump up unto the roof, and then climb onto the roof of the building in the middle of the roof. Cross to the opposite side of the roof to find the blue box containing the weapon’s Blueprint inside.
Drop into the alcove, and kick the box around 76 times.
After you’ve opened it up, grab the Blueprint, and take a look at the stats.
This weapons deals over 500 damage when full upgraded, and has a nice durability of 35, making it even stronger, and more durable than the EXPcalibur.
Having trouble following this guide? Not a fan of reading? No worries, we've got you covered. Check out our video guide below.
Shacknews - Ozzie Mejia
We'll get into this weekend's PC download deals in just a second, but first, I'd like to rent out this top space as a two-fold memorial. First off, I'd like to, once again, express how much everyone here will miss Andrew Yoon and wish the best to his friends and family. His card game, Divorce, was weeks away from release, so be sure to give it a look, because he put his heart and soul into it.
Secondly, I'd like to acknowledge a loss of a different sort. I became a writer because I came up as a fan of Joystiq and their work. They made me want to do this for a living. To hear of their closure is devastating and we wish the best to Xav de Matos, who we still like to consider to be a part of our Shacknews family, and all of the other talented staff writers at Joystiq. We hope they will all land on their feet soon, but there's no doubt that this industry is poorer for this loss.
Here's our selection of this weekend's PC deals:
- WildStar - $19.99 (50% off)
- EVE Online: 2 PLEX - $31.48 (10% off)
- EVE Online: 1 month subscription - $13.45 (10% off)
Pay $1.99 for Front Page Sports Football, GAUGE, Foosball - Street Edition, Bloodbath, New Star Soccer 5, Ducati World Championship, Governor of Poker 2 Premium Edition, and Chicken Shoot Gold. These activate on Steam.
Or Pay $4.99 for Tropico 4: Steam Special Edition and its DLC packs. These activate on Steam.
Or pay $2.99 for LEVEL 22, Kick-Ass 2, Poof vs The Cursed Kitty, Cloud Chamber, Robot Rescue Revolution, Sang-Froid: Tales of Werewolves, Fly'N, Desert Ashes, Dungeon Lurk II: Leona, and 99 Spirits. These activate on Steam.
Or pay $4.99 for Wrack, Dark, BlazeRush, Onikira: Demon Killer, Super Toy Cars, Magnetic By Nature, Silence of the Sleep, The Joylancer: Legendary Motor Knight, The Detail Episode 1, and Z. These activate on Steam.
Or pay $4.99 for Saints Row 2 and Saints Row The Third: The Full Package. These activate on Steam.
Or pay $3.49 for Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising, Operation Flashpoint: Red River, Overlord, Overlord: Raising Hell, Overlord II, Rise or the Argonauts, Hospital Tycoon, Maelstrom: The Battle for Earth Begins, and Damnation. These activate on Steam.
- Tropico 5 [Steam] - $13.99 (65% off)
- The Vanishing of Ethan Carter [Steam] - $11.99 (40% off)
- Darksiders Franchise Pack [Steam] - $14.99 (75% off)
- RPG Maker VX Ace [Steam] - $10.49 (85% off)
Direct 2 Drive
- Frozen Synapse Prime [Steam] - $17.49 (30% off)
- PixelJunk Monsters Ultimate [Steam] - $1.39 (86% off)
- PixelJunk Shooter [Steam] - $1.44 (84% off)
- PixelJunk Eden [Steam] - $1.39 (86% off)
- Risen 3 Titan Lords [Steam] - $25.00 (50% off) (Other Risen content also on sale here.)
- Train Simulator 2015 add-ons are on sale here.
- Sword of the Stars: The Pit Gold Edition [Steam] - $4.42 (66% off)
- Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition [Steam] - $7.49 (75% off) (Other Sleeping Dogs content also on sale here.)
- Murdered: Soul Suspect [Steam] - $10.19 (66% off)
- The Vanishing of Ethan Carter [Steam] - $11.99 (40% off)
- Other games in Get Games' Adventure Sale, including the Deponia series and Gemini Rue, can be found here.
- Pick up five Devolver Digital games (Shadow Warrior, Shadow Warrior Classic Complete, Hotline Miami, Serious Sam: The First Encounter, and Serious Sam: The Second Encounter) and five Devolver Digital movies for 90% off here.
Green Man Gaming
Use the code 20PERO-FFDIGI-GAMESX to get 20% off your purchase. Some exclusions apply.
- Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel [Steam] (24 hours only) - $29.99 (50% off)
- Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth [Steam] (24 hours only) - $29.99 (40% off)
- Wolfenstein: The New Order [Steam] - $29.99 (40% off)
- The Evil Within [Steam] - $29.99 (50% off)
- Train Simulator 2015 [Steam] - $19.99 (50% off)
- Borderlands 2 GOTY Edition [Steam] - $9.99 (75% off)
- Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris [Steam] - $9.99 (50% off)
- Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition [Steam] - $10.19 (66% off)
- Alien: Isolation [Steam] - $24.99 (50% off)
Pay what you want for Scrolls, SolForge (Dinosaur Starter), Star Realms, Talisman: Digital Edition & Talisman: Prologue (w/2 character packs), and BloodRealm: Battlegrounds Debut Champion Lord (w/3 Elite Packs). Pay more than the average $7.98 to get Magic 2015: Duels of the Planeswalkers Special Edition (w/Garruk's Revenge Expansion), Dominion Online (w/Seaside Expansion), SolForge (Two Starter Packs and Bonus Gold), BloodRealm: Battlegrounds Gaul campaign, Scrolls Exclusive Avatar Heads, and War of Omens Super Starter Pack. Pay $12 or more to also receive Dominion Online (Intrigue + Prosperity Expansions), Scrolls (Humble Bundle Deluxe Pack), and Card Hunter Basic Edition (Premium). Pay $35 or more to also receive a Humble Card Games Bundle and T-Shirt.
Or pay what you want for Nihilumbra, Spy Chameleon: RGB Agent, and AR-K. Pay more than the average $3.93 to get Full Mojo Rampage and Deadlight. Pay $10 or more to also receive Pixel Piracy and UnEpic. Select soundtracks included. All games work on Steam and Steam keys are available with a $1 minimum.
- Total War Grand Master Collection [Steam] - $41.24 (70% off)
- Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed [Steam] - $4.99 (75% off)
- The Cave [Steam] - $3.74 (75% off)
- The full list of games on sale this week at the Humble Store, including Daily Deals, can be found here.
As well as regular discounts, Steam has a couple of additional weekend deals.
- LEGO Batman Trilogy - $20.00 (60% off) (Individual games also on sale. The entire LEGO gaming catalog is also on sale here.)
- Ryse: Son of Rome - $19.99 (50% off)
- Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1 - $14.99 (50% off)
- Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) - $8.99 (40% off)
- Football Manager 2015 - $33.49 (33% off)
Shacknews - Shack Staff
Harran is filled with all kinds of weapons. There are swords, knives, blunt objects, and even guns. But the last of these, the gun, is perhaps one of the strongest, and yet, most dangerous weapons to use. Remember survivors, noise draws out the dead.
The easiest weapon to find in the game is a rifle. Simply locate a rifle toting bandit, beat his brains out, and then take his gun. Easy enough right? Sadly, the NPC in the image below isn't a bandit.
The second way to find a gun is to spend countless hours traveling around and lockpicking police vehicles. While this may not sound hard, the lockpicking in Dying Light can be a bit tricky, and so it makes this method of locating a gun very challenging.
The third, and perhaps even the quickest way to find a gun is to pick up the German 9MM pistol laying beside the late gentleman in the image below. Granted you’ll only get 5 rounds with the gun, but like I said – noise draws out the dead.
If you’re looking to pick up this pistol simply head to the area I’ve marked on the map below.
Now move into the cabin.
See the lovely deceased gentleman?
Stoop and pick up the weapon to store it in your inventory.
Once that’s done you’re good to go. I do, however, highly suggest holding onto this weapon until you complete the Gunslinger side quest, since you’ll need the Pistol to complete it.
Shacknews - Steven Wong
Welcome to the premiere episode of The Indie Shout-out, the video segment that gives indie games some much deserved love. Episode 01 features Eldritch, a rogue-like action game set in Lovecraftian lore. Despite what its Mincraft-like graphics might suggest, the game can be quite terrifying and challenging. Andrew gives you all the info you need on this indie gem. Just... try not to go mad while watching it.
Shacknews - Nathaniel Hohl
The Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) genre of gaming has grown in magnitudes since the days of the original Defense of the Ancients (DOTA) mod for Blizzard’s Warcraft III. Obviously there are the heavy-hitters like Riot Games’ League of Legends and Valve’s DOTA 2 but there are also plenty of other options for MOBA fans to sample including Zynga’s Solstice Arena, S2 Games’ Heroes of Newerth, Nival’s Prime World, and Stunlock Studios’ Dead Island: Epidemic, to name a few. I have played these and others over the years and I have discovered that, of all the different MOBA games I have dabbled in, there are two that stand out both because of their brand recognition and their accessibility. Those games are Infinite Crisis from developer Turbine and Heroes of the Storm from Blizzard.
Problem: MOBAs Are Too Complicated and Toxic
Even if you’re not an experienced MOBA player, you likely know about the insulated and often toxic nature of the community. Most MOBA games have a steep learning curve, which is compounded by the fact that many hardcore MOBA players would rather scream and curse at a teammate who is (often unintentionally) failing to pull their own weight instead of take the time to help them. Developers like Riot Games have been trying to fight this toxic presence for years, with initiatives such as a program that rewards League of Legends players for good behavior and a player-run tribunal system. But these efforts can’t do much to change the already deeply-ingrained public opinion of both League of Legends and other MOBAs. Blizzard hopes that doing away with some of the advanced elements of traditional MOBAs will help prevent communities of hostile players from flourishing.
On paper, Infinite Crisis and Heroes of the Storm (HoTS) actually have quite a few things in common. Both are developed by high-profile developers, both are currently in beta-testing, and both utilize themes and characters from a pre-established fiction. That, however, is where the similarities more or less end. Heroes of the Storm aims to be a more casual-friendly experience and stars playable characters from several different Blizzard franchises including Starcraft, Diablo, and Warcraft. Infinite Crisis, meanwhile,transports players into the world of DC Comics and uses various superhero-themed elements such as destructible environments and a roster of both classic and lesser-known DC heroes and villains to shake up the MOBA formula.
Heroes of the Storm Sweeps In
Even before it was officially announced, HoTS already had a bit of a reputation, having been the end result of a minor dispute between Blizzard and Valve over the use of the name “DOTA” back in 2012. The two companies eventually settled the dispute with Valve getting to retain the rights to the name and Blizzard changing the title of its then-in-development game from Blizzard DOTA to Blizzard All-Stars. It wasn’t until October of 2013 that Blizzard officially unveiled the game under its even newer title: Heroes of the Storm. The game retains many elements of a typical MOBA including lanes and creeps, but does away with technical elements such as last-hitting (a bonus granted to players for dealing the killing blow to enemy creeps) and individual character levels. Instead, an entire team shares one overall “team level” that all players contribute to.
Heroes of the Storm entered its closed beta phase back in early January after an extended technical alpha period. As someone who played the game shortly after the technical alpha kicked off, I can say that it has come a long way since then. It is still just a beta, so there are some caveats. Both the playable hero roster and the player community are a little thin at the moment, although Blizzard is working hard to fill those ranks as quickly as possible. The roster currently stands at 33 different heroes, which isn’t anything to sneeze at, but also isn’t quite as large as those sported by more established MOBA’s like League of Legends (123 playable champions at the time of this writing) or DOTA 2 (112 total playable heroes).
What Heroes lacks in depth, it more than makes up for in accessibility. Despite being in its beta phase, the game has a comprehensive tutorial system that teaches everything from the basics to advanced strategies. Heroes also ditches the typical gold-collecting/item-buying system for a Talent system (similar to the ones found in World of Warcraft and Diablo III), which allows players to shape how their chosen hero plays over the course of a typical match without having to worry about min/max item builds. Since more advanced talents unlock over time, new players aren’t overwhelmed by options when they first start playing as a new hero and instead can ease into their desired playstyle over the course of several matches.
Having cut my teeth on MOBA’s such as League of Legends and Heroes of Newerth, I found Heroes of the Storm’s more casual, accessible approach to be a welcome change of pace. The simplified game systems still allow for a lot of complex strategy thanks to unique elements such as minion camps (A.I. minions that are defeated in a map’s jungle regions can temporarily join your team and help push lanes) and towers with limited ammunition (encouraging lane pushes that result in faster matches). The unique map-specific objectives that are built within each of the game’s maps also help newer/less-skilled players feel like they’re contributing even if they’re not racking up kills. It may still only be in an early beta phase, but Heroes of the Storm has already done a lot towards making the MOBA genre less intimidating for newer, more casual players to break into.
Infinite Crisis Summons Alternatives
Turbine’s Infinite Crisis openly embraces many of the atypical MOBA elements that Heroes of the Storm does away with but it also mixes things up enough to stand out from the crowd. First announced way back in March of 2013, Infinite Crisis features a story in which several different worlds (each with their own versions of iconic DC characters) collide and begin bleeding into each other. Unlike Heroes of the Storm, Infinite Crisis retains gameplay elements such as last-hitting, item-building, and resource-collecting but it also has unique features such as objects that can be manipulated by heroes with certain powers and augmentations. Environmental manipulation allows players to drastically alter how a hero operates in a match.
Thanks to its “Stolen Powers” mechanic, which functions similarly to the Summoner Powers from League of Legends, Infinite Crisis sports one of the most malleable character rosters of any MOBA I’ve played. Want to play as a Batman who can hurl cars with super strength and see stealthed players with X-Ray vision? How about a Wonder Woman who can directly heal her allies and move quickly using super speed? These and many other combinations are possible thanks to the Stolen Powers system which is further bolstered by both generic and hero-specific powers.
Turbine also dove head-first into the idea of using heroes and villains from multiple worlds, incorporating them not just as alternate skins but also as entirely separate characters. If you are a casual MOBA player, you’d naturally assume that Gaslight Batman is just an alternate skin for regular Batman. Not so in Infinite Crisis; while Batman is a standard melee brawler, Gaslight Batman is am entirely separate character who functions as a ranged marksman thanks to his twin sonic pistols.
Merging the different worlds of the DC universe not only treats fans to lesser-known versions of their favorite heroes and villains, but it also dispels pre-conceived notions of how a character should operate. Think you know how Wonder Woman or Green Lantern or Joker would work in a MOBA environment? Try playing as Gaslight Joker or Atomic Wonder Woman or Arcane Green Lantern and prepare to have your mind blown. Infinite Crisis may currently only have a roster of 39 characters, but thanks to its Stolen Powers, augments, item-building, and multi-world presentation, it feels like a lot more.
Infinite Crisis may not be as casual-friendly as Heroes of the Storm but it’s definitely a game that newcomers should consider. Ithas a comprehensive tutorial system that grants peremenant access to six different champions once completed, and it also includes co-op vs. A.I. support on three of its four current maps, which is perfect for trying out new champions and builds. Cooperative modes aren’t a new phenomenon, but few games are as dedicated to ensuring new player understand its mechanics as much as Infinite Crisis does.
Heroes of the Storm and Infinite Crisis aren’t the only games shaking things up. Hi-Rez Studios’ third-person mythology-themed Smite is fast making a name for itself. Nor are they the only MOBAs to be based in pre-established fiction. Stunlock’s Dead Island: Epidemic and CD Projekt Red’s The Witcher Battle Arena both do. However, they do the best job of balancing accessibility and appeal. Since neither game has seen a full release yet, new players can come in without the fear of being beaten down by seasoned veterans. Both games also smartly incorporate elements from the pre-established fictions in which they’re based, helping to draw in players who might not normally be interested in playing a MOBA game.
Shacknews - Daniel Perez
After several days of rumors, it appears confirmed that AOL will be shutting down Joystiq as we all currently know it to be.
According to TechCrunch, Joystiq isn’t being completely shut down. AOL plans on folding content from the publication into its tech-related blog, Engadget. As a result, Joystiq will stay on as a separate channel at Engadget, although it’s unknown at this time whether or not AOL will keep the Joystiq brand name.
A number of Joystiq employees have announced they, as well as their colleagues, will be out of work starting as early as Tuesday. “Official: @joystiq is no more,” writes news content director at Joystiq, Alexander Sliwinski, on his Twitter account. “Got some talented people looking for work.” This leads me to believe the majority of Joystiq’s talented staff won’t be joining Engadget in order to cover news. Instead, Engadget will probably cover gaming content with its current staff.
We here at Shacknews wish the best to everyone affected by today’s news, although we’re confident the games industry will get them all back on their feet in no time.
Shacknews - Steve Watts
This week, the Chattycast brings back the dapper Andrew Zucosky. He joins Steve Watts and Daniel Perez to talk about how to go off the grid for five days, gaming slumps, how to best remember the classics, emotional games, and proudest accomplishments. Plus, the crew opens with a moment of silence for friend and fellow Shacker Andrew Yoon, who recently passed away.
Thanks as always to those who provided our topic suggestions this week: Amusatron, ejectorpod, radula, Hemtroll, and themanwiththebriefcase. If you want see your name in lights, keep an eye on Chatty to suggest topics! And, special thanks to Chatty user dael for contributing music to the show, and to Bryan "Doctor Games" Carr for production assistance.
Off-Topic: In one hour, every single human being in the entire world will be looking for you. Your goal is to remain unfound for five days. How would you do it? Segment 1: How do you break out of a gaming slump?Segment 2: Are old games best remembered, replayed with emulators, or re-booted? Segment 3: Which game or series do you have the strongest emotional attachment to? Ever cried while playing a video game?Segment 4: What is your most proud or impressive gaming record or achievement?
Shacknews - Daniel Perez
Square Enix confirmed with Joystiq it plans on bringing its Ultimate Action and Ultimate Stealth triple packs to North America for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 owners on March 31, both of which were previously only available in Europe.
The Ultimate Action Triple Pack includes Tomb Raider, Sleeping Dogs and Just Cause 2, while the second bundle, called the Ultimate Stealth Triple Pack, includes Thief, Hitman: Absolution, and Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Both bundles are priced at $30 for each, meaning you can get six pretty big Square Enix games for the price of just one of them when they first released. That’s one heck of a bargain if you ask me.
Shacknews - Steven Wong
Adande Thorn, better known to the gaming public as Swoozie, is a professional gamer, vlogger, and Dead or Alive fanatic. He put untold hours into playing the fighting game series and acted as a consultant during the development of Dead or Alive 5: Last Round. But how much does he really know about DOA? Our on-air host, Sam puts Swoozie through a DOA trivia test, with some revealing results.
Dead or Alive 5: Last Round releases for the PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One on February 17, and the PC on March 30th.
To learn more about Swoozie, check out his YouTube Channel.