PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to TMNT: Out of the Shadows pre-alpha footage looks gnarly, radical and totally tubular, dude">tmnt







IGN have got hold of the first proper in-game footage of Activision's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game - and it looks really rather promising. In fact, it looks like Batman: Arkham Asylum. Only greener. And with four-player co-op. The video, below, shows off five minutes of henchman-pummelling action, with Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michelangelo using their oddly realistic half-shells to full effect.



Sadly there's no sign of Splinter, Shredder, April O'Neil, Krang or Bebop and Rocksteady yet, all of which we hope make an appearance so we can see what photo-realism does to their cartoon faces. Out of the Shadows - which doesn't have anything to do with the upcoming movie, by the way - is due out this Summer. Here's what it looks like at the moment:



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Turn PC Gamer into Marble Madness with this nifty Google Chrome “experiment”">world wide maze







If you've always wanted to roll a metal ball around on a 3D version of your favourite PC games website, then I truly hope you're seeking professional help. Also: you can now do that thing I just said, thanks to this weird, cool experiment from Google Chrome. Ignore the bit where it tells you to hook up your phone, and persevere through the frequent dropped connections, because this nifty little game is totally worth it. Not so much for the game itself, which is a sort of Marble Madness/Monkey Ball mash-up, but for the chance to interact with your favourite websites - you can use this on any site - in a new and bizarre way. Thanks to World Wide Maze, I now know what it feels like to roll around on a multi-tiered environment generated from my own words. It feels strange.



Thanks to Engadget for discovering this. There's a video showing the game/experiment/thing in action below.



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Magic 2014: Duels of the Planeswalkers announced, features lady with fire for hair">magic 2014







Wizards of the Coast have announced the latest edition of their Magic: Duels of the Planeswalkers collectible card-battling series. Named, inevitably, Magic 2014, the game boasts of "10 brand new decks, 15 new encounters, 10 new puzzle challenges", in addition to a new game mode and the chance to digitally interact with Magic's new line of cards before they're immortalised in cardboard later in the year. By the looks of it, this doesn't appear to as major an upgrade as the one between Magic 2012 and 13, unless that new mode is particularly revolutionary.



The teaser trailer, below, tells you absolutely nothing, focusing instead on Planeswalker Chandra Nalaar, who has the power to set fire to her own hair. To be fair, that's the easy part - the hard part is turning your bonce back to normal, without suffering horrific burns in the process.



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Natural Selection 2 gets free weekend, sale, new trailer to celebrate both">Natural Selection 2 update







If you're thinking of buying Natural Selection 2 in the next few hours, you might want to hold off until 5PM UK time/1PM EDT, as the asymmetrical multiplayer RTS/shooter has been selected, naturally, to get a big fat 50% off Steam sale. For those that prefer to try before you die, there's going to be a nice long free weekend as well, with the weekend having been (seemingly) reclassified to include Thursday and Friday. Hey, I'm not complaining. Head here to reap the rewards, but be sure to check out the following action-heavy trailer before you depart, as Unknown Worlds have made it specially for the occasion. You can tell it's made with love, and not with pure molten hate, because it doesn't feature a single semi-quaver of dubstep.



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Audiosurf Air trailer shows off hoverboard thing, jumps, stunning Tron-style light show">audiosurf air







The original Audiosurf was a rather lovely racing/rhythm game mashup that generated tracks based on your music collection. The heart of the game lay in its global high score table, and in challenging your friends to beat your score on, say, Britney Spears' Toxic - but more likely Jonathan Coulton's Still Alive, which came bundled with the game. It's been a long time coming, but its sequel Audiosurf Air appears to be nearing its vague "2013" release, as the first gameplay video has emerged blinking into the world. As you can see, it's a huge leap forward from the original in terms of visual clout, Tron-ness, and actually featuring surfing, with a weird hoversurfboard-ski-thing replacing Audiosurf's Wipeout-esque hoverships.



The other new thing on show in this teaser trailer is SSX-style air flips and tricks, with creator Dylan Fitterer promising that "in Audiosurf Air you can fly up into the feeling of your music and soar. So get ready to twist, turn, and hear the crowd roar--and grab a sweater 'cause goosebumps are guaranteed." Does it have to be a sweater? Will a hoodie do?



Aaaaaand that's pretty much all we know about Audiosurf Air, apart from the 2013 release date. Now here's that trippy, Tronny trailer:



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Trials Evolution: Gold Edition crash-lands on Steam, reloads, crashes again">Trials Evolution Gold Edition







After mucking around on the Xbox 360 for a few too many years, Trials is finally back where it belongs: on PC. As our preview explained earlier this week, Trials Evolution: Gold Edition is no simple port. It includes every piece of content from Trials HD, its similarly Xbox-exclusive predecessor, all of which have been rebuilt in the Evolution engine. That makes for 129 tracks and mini-games in total - or a "crapton", in technical terms. The game hits digital stores today, and yer actual brick-and-mortar ones tomorrow, once the game's jumped over that large gap, survived some explosions and done the loop-de-loop. You'll find a bone-shattering launch trailer below.







Ouch. The Big Thing about Evolution is its hugely powerful level editor, which has been used to make all sorts of exciting stuff. That's obviously included in this PC edition - though, disappointingly, we won't be able to access the 300,000-odd Xbox 360 mods - along with instant replay-sharing via YouTube.



You can grab Trials Evolution: Gold Edition here, once the game unlocks in a matter of hours.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Skyrim’s ‘Legendary’ update hits steam, smashes level cap with a greatsword">Skyrim legendary







Like a thieving Khajit with a Sneak skill of 100, Bethesda have surreptitiously uploaded Skyrim's Legendary patch onto Steam. As revealed earlier this month, Legendary - or to give it its proper name, Skyrim v1.9 - not only adds a harder difficulty level to the game, it allows skills to be made 'Legendary', resetting them to 15 so they can be levelled up all over again. Why on Tamriel would you want to do this? Well, to increase your character level beyond Skyrim's 'soft' level cap of around 81. More details below.



As announced on Bethesda's blog, and elaborated over on Reddit, to reset a skill you first have to raise it to 100, at which point you can use the Book of Waking Dreams item to revert it to a puny 15. This adds a little dragon symbol under the skill name, but doesn't appear to grant any benefits to your character - other than "effectively the overall level cap", of course. You can reset the same skill over and over again, if you desire. (Thanks, Eurogamer.)



That's in addition to the new Legendary difficulty level, and quite a few bug fixes - my favourites being "companions will equip better weapons and armor if given to them", and "fixed rare instance of couriers who would appear only dressed in a hat". Here's the full, massive list:



General memory and stability improvements

Fixed issue with quest scripts that were not shutting down properly

Companions will equip better weapons and armor if given to them

Fixed rare issue where player is unable to learn the Clear Skies shout during "The Throat of the World"

Fixed rare instance where Alduin would become invincible during "Alduin's Bane"

Fixed a rare issue where player could become stuck in Night Mother's coffin during "Death Incarnate"

Fixed rare issue where protected companions could be killed from poison damage

Fixed rare issue with certain ash piles left from resurrected NPCs not clearing properly

Fixed rare issue with NPCs and creatures respawning improperly after player fast travels

Fixed rare crash when entering Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary

Fixed rare crash when entering a player owned home

Random dragon attacks will no longer occur during "Battle for Whiterun"

Fixed a rare crash when attempting to save your game during "Waking Nightmare"

Fixed issue where "Glory of the Undead" would not start properly if player is in combat with Eorlund Gray-Mane

The white phial is no longer consumed if given to a follower

If player marries Aela, the "Totem of Hircine" quest will be available

Unused briar hearts can be dropped after finishing "The White Phial"

Fixed issue with paying off a crime against the Companions that prevented player from getting Companions quests properly

Thieves Guild caches are now properly enabled in the appropriate cities

The Dragon Infusion perk now works properly when taking Esbern's Potion

Cragslane Cave properly resets if player receives a radiant quest to clear it out

Fixed rare issue with bounty quest objectives not properly clearing after completion

Gallus' Encoded Journal is no longer a quest item after completing the Thieves Guild

In "No Stone Unturned" Vex will now accept Unusual Gems if you've collected them all before starting the quest

Vekel the Man now gives rewards for completing "Toying with The Dead"

Fixed rare issue with being unable to turn in stolen items in "The Litany of Larceny"

Fixed issue with followers becoming over-encumbered after being repeatedly rehired

Fixed rare issue with visiting Kynesgrove on horseback not progressing "A Blade in the Dark" properly

Fixed issue with receiving a duplicate radiant quest from a Jarl

Fixed conflict with clearing Driftshade Sanctuary before starting "Trouble in Skyrim"

Fixed issue with using shouts while in jail and having guards unlock the jail cell

Fixed rare issue with quest NPCs not properly moving to quest locations

Fixed issue with NPCs not selling master level spells

Fixed rare issue where player gets control locked outside the Thalmor Embassy at the start of "Diplomatic Immunity"

Fixed rare issue with disappearing containers after upgrades in player owned house

Fixed issue with being erroneously attacked while as a werewolf during "Ill Met By Moonlight"

The Ebony Blade is now only improved by two handed perks

Locked door to Proudspire Manor can now be unlocked by proper key

Fixed issue with merchants not receiving the proper additional gold with the Investor perk

Fixed a rare issue where the player would be unable to learn a word after leaving for several days during "The Way of The Voice"

The Nord Hero Bow can now be improved

The Purity perk no longer requires the Experimenter perk

Fixed rare instance where Lovers Comfort would not be applied properly

If you approach Frostmere Crypt from the north, "The Pale Lady" will start properly

Fixed rare issue where player could be prevented from speaking with Atub to start "The Cursed Tribe"

Fixed rare issue where a dragon could appear in the Mind of a Madman realm and kill the player

Fixed instance where player could get stuck in Japhet's Folly

Fixed rare instances where Arngeir would not teach Worldwind Sprint

Fixed issue with "Ill Met By Moonlight" if Sinding dies before the quest starts

Gharol can now properly train up to level 75

Fixed conflict with visiting The Karthspire before starting "Alduin's Wall"

Reduced the instance of random dragon attacks after fast traveling post main quest

Recruited Blades now have appropriate dialogue while at Sky Haven Temple

Fixed rare issue where an incorrect dungeon could appear as a location during "Totems of Hircine"

Fixed rare instance in "Fetch me that Book" where books found before getting the quest would not be properly recognized

Fixed rare issue with traveling to Thalmor Embassy with companions during "Diplomatic Immunity"

Fixed issues with Matching Set perk not working properly with certain pieces of armor

Fixed issues with Custom Fit perk not working properly with certain pieces of armor

Fixed issue with NPC dying in a bear trap blocking progress in "Time of My Need"

Fixed rare issue with swinging door becoming stuck and blocking an entrance in Volunruud

Imperial Light Armor can now be crafted

Fixed issue with "Vald's Debt" where Vald was not leveled properly

Fixed issue with Vilkas not giving proper greeting after completing "Battle for Whiterun"

Fixed issue with respawning actors that were raised by using the Ritual Stone power

Fixed issue with the Ancient Knowledge perk not calculating properly

The Palace of Kings now has patrolling guards on upper floors

Reduce percentage chance of getting a werewolf loading screen while player is a werewolf

Pantea's flute is no longer a quest item after completing "Pantea's Flute"

Placing an unread Oghma Infinium on a bookshelf in the player's house no longer allows the book to be reused again

Adjusted dialogue priority to improve chances of hearing more combat dialogue from certain NPC enemies

Fixed issue with falling damage on high difficulty levels

Fixed bad collision on certain clutter objects

Fixed rare instance of couriers who would appear only dressed in a hat

PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Clive Barker’s Undying added to GOG as the bane of your pants">Clive Barker's Undying







Clive Barker's Undying carries the distinction as one of the first games to carve an expression of terrified horror in my face from start to end. I swore I'd never revisit it, but it's on GOG now for $6, an absolute steal for one of the best and truly frightful first-person survival horror games out there.



Sure, it's not as weird as previous new(old?)comer Omikron, but Undying still keeps its magic of piling on creepy mysticism, nightmarish enemies, and lots of frantic shooting. All because the Covenant siblings couldn't resist blurting out a profane ritual. Silly Covenants.



As with the rest of GOG's library, Undying's olden 2001 graphics are kept pristine while taking a bump in compatibility for Windows XP, 7, and 8. For more nostalgic incoherent screaming, here's the intro trailer.



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to What is WildStar? This trailer is glad you asked">wildstar_trailer







What is WildStar? Is it this guy yelling at me for 130 hours? I don't think so, but how do I know? Also, where is the mysterious planet Nexus, and does it conceal "ancient technologies and forbidden magic of awesome, unimaginable power?" I mean, it seems likely, but—woah, relax there, narrator, no need to yell. Things are about to get what-ing real? I was just asking some valid questions about WildStar!



What? The stakes are totally high enough for me. When did I say they aren't? Now I need a death fortress? Alright, I guess I do want that, but, is this going to be my kind of adventure? It is? Well, alright then. I appreciate your honest answers, WildStar trailer, and you do look fun. Still, no need to berate me for asking. I have feelings.



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to BioShock Infinite’s animation director discusses Elizabeth’s visual evolution">BioShock Infinite Elizabeth







The saga of BioShock Infinite's journey from the studio to our hard drives could fill a fair-sized codex, but one of the most visible transformations from the game's initial concepts took place with co-protagonist Elizabeth. Irrational has talked previously about her complicated scripting and her personal motivations that were shaped by Ken Levine's personal experiences—and even that she was nearly nearly cut from the game altogether—and now Eurogamer, after a chat with Irrational Animation Director Shawn Robertson, has revealed the rationale behind Elizabeth's stylized, "hyper-realistic" appearance in the finished game.



Robertson's goal was to create a character whose expressions and body language could easily be detected at a distance, emphasizing Elizabeth's importance to the player as they traverse Columbia and elude her former captors. Earlier Elizabeths used motion capture and normal proportions for facial features, but that changed to hand-keyed animations and a slightly exaggerated look after testers started losing notice of her in the midst of Infinite's other eye-grabbing features.



"Hand-key really simplifies the process and lets us push her expressions just a little beyond what would maybe be comfortable for a normal human being," Robertson says. "It also lets us iterate at that moment when we're animating, not three months ago when the mo-cap was shot, so we can roll with the punches on any changes or ideas that have come up for that scene as we're working on it."



He continues: "The first Elizabeth we tried to do that pushed us towards hand-key was the Gibson girl we showed you, and she had a completely normal-looking face. Even in that early model, she wouldn't have made it as a star character—she wasn't attractive enough, there were problems—but even there, we could really see that in a game where you're moving around so much with a companion you want to elicit an emotional connection to, you really need to be able to see what she's thinking at all times."







While the word "attractive" might suggest Robertson only cares about aesthetics, the context suggests he's not talking about sex appeal. Rather, Robertson was probably referring to how relatable Elizabeth is, and how well the design conveys her emotional state in a readable way. He goes on to describe the technical criteria Elizabeth's look needed to meet.



"We wanted to exaggerate her facial structure so that you could see her across the room and read the expression she has on her face," said Robertson. "Even at 1080p, it's tough as a player to look at the screen and analyse what's going on. There's so many things—a gun, the UI, combat, things to pick up, and you're moving constantly. So, the resolution you're seeing all these things at is diminished somewhat just by the pure choice you have in what to look at. So, we wanted to give Liz a nudge up, and that's why she's hyper-realistic."



BioShock Infinite releases March 26. Irrational also shared a mini-documentary on the various actresses, models, and artists influencing Elizabeth's formation, which you can watch below.



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