Shacknews - Asif Khan

Google's Tilt Brush is now available for purchase on the Oculus Home store. Oculus Rift owners with Touch controllers can experience virtual reality painting. Oculus Medium, Facebook's native sculpting application, launched with the Oculus Touch controllers late last year. While Medium is a great tool, it never lived up to the expectations created by Tilt Brush. This is still my favorite VR application and it is the first experience that I load up when I introduce someone to virtual reality. Please take a look at this footage of Tilt Brush running on HTC Vive.

For more videos, including gameplay and interviews, visit the Shacknews and GamerHub.tv YouTube channels.

Shackers can buy Google's Tilt Brush on Oculus Home today for $29.99.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Hot on the heels of Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan throwing a wet blanket on the idea of Doomfist as the next hero, the official game site has released a tease into who or what the next addition to the roster could be.

A faux interview with 11-year-old Efi Oladele of Numbani reveals that the young lady is a genius when it comes to robotics and artificial intelligence. She just won a "genius grant" from the Adawe Foundation and the interview drops a few obscure hints as to what Blizzard my be planning. Efi is adept at building drones to do work for her, and her dream "is to build something that can keep us safe, like the new OR15s." She adds that she has "an idea" of what she want to do next, but is going on vacation first.

So, to recap, Efi could be the new hero with smart drones and robots to assist her, or she could be the inventor of a new robot that serves as a boon to humanity or turns against us all. Or it could be some combination of the two. The first and last option are rather unlikely given her age and the potential fallout of "Blizzard is killing kids," so the bet is on an Omnic hero or villain when the announcement finally hits. 

Either way, the speculation has begun, and Doomfist is on the back burner–for now.

Shacknews - John Keefer

If you love playing Blizzard games but have an aversion to upgrading your older operating systems on PC, then be prepared to force yourself to make a change if you still want to play World of Warcraft, Diablo 3, StarCraft 2, Hearthstone and Heroes of the Storm.

Blizzard has announced that it will be ending support for Windows XP and Windows Vista sometime in the next few months. The changes to the games will be rolled out on a staggered schedule, to be announced closer to the actual update. Microsoft stopped supporting those versions of Windows in 2009 and 2012 respectively, but Blizzard kept up support "since a decent portion of our audience was still using them at the time." But since Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 are now more prevalent, Blizzard is moving to stop enabling those who don't want to make a change.

"After these older operating systems are no longer supported, the games will not run on them, so we encourage any players who are still using one of the older OSes to upgrade to a newer version," Community manager Ornyx said in the forum post.

So if you are still running one of those dinosaur OSes, suck it up and upgrade if you want to keep playing your favorite Blizzard games.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Civilization 6 will be getting another update in the next few weeks, this time adding the country of Australia to the roster of playable civs. And if that wasn't enough, the free patch associated with the DLC will add modding tools and Steam Workshp support are also being included in the patch.

The Australian Summer 2017 Update features leader John Curtin, the country's prime minster during World War II. The perks for the civ, which is showing up for the first time ever in the franchise, include:

  • The Digger unit: Replaces Infantry and represents combat units that served in both World Wars. It gets bonuses when fighting outside its territory or fighting on land adjacent to water.
  • The Outback Station: Represents the massive cattle ranches found in the country. Unlocks with the Guild civic and can be upgraded with Steam Power and Rapid Deployment. It provided food and production, with bonus food for adjacent pastures. It Upgrade can also trigger a culture bomb effect that will grab adjacent tiles from other civs..
  • Land Down Under: This unique ability grants cities extra housing if they are built on coastal tiles, and gives bonus yields to improvement in tiles with "charming" or "breathtaking" appeal.
  • Citadel of Civilization: Curtin's unique leader ability. which triggers 100% production if war was declared against the civ in the last 10 turns or it liberated a city within the last 20 turns.

Adding Australia will cost you $4.99, but the patch coming with it will add the highly requested features of Steam Workshop support, modding tools and multiplayer teams. The usual performance tweaks, "ranging from trade routes to ice caps, obsolete units to AI upgrades," will be included, developer Firaxis said.

Shacknews - John Keefer

The .38 patch dropped for Paragon today, with the big part of the update being the addition of pop star Shinbi to the roster. But as with any patch, there are plenty of bug fixes and balance tweaks to go with it.

Shinbi is a bit of a change from previous heroes - she had a music video to reveal her addition to the game - and she likes to summon spirit wolves to help her do her dirty work as an assassin and ganker. Her abilities include:

  • Rushing Beat: Shinbi dashes forward passing through enemies and dealing damage, she can also re-trigger quickly after to dash again
  • Line Tempo: A Spirit Wolf is summoned and runs out in a straight line, passing through minions and dealing damage. The wolf explodes on contact with an enemy Hero
  • Circle Rhythm: Shinbi summons four Spirit Wolves that circle her for 4 seconds, which deal damage and heal Shinbi for each hit
  • All-Kill! 
    • Passive: All of Shinbi’s abilities apply +1 Spirit Wolf stack per hit to enemy Heroes, building up to eight stacks.
    • Active: When activated a pack of Spirit Wolves attack the closest target with the highest number of Wolf stacks, sending one Wolf per stack.

Here is a trailer discussing how to play the character properly.

And if you want a music video, this was her coming out party for the game. 

As for the full patch notes:

Monolith

  • Updated backdoor protection
    • Now grants a percentage of damage resistance instead of adding 500 of both armor types.
  • Reduced Tier 1 Tower Bonus Armor duration from 7 minutes to 5 minutes.

AI

  • Fixed a bug where white camps couldn’t be killed after getting stuck in geometry.
  • Prime Guardian
    • Updated Prime Guardian attack patterns.
    • Prime Guardian should now turn to face targets faster for initial attack.
  • Improved ranged bots positioning when attacking jungle camps.
  • Changed bots to use “Ultimate Ready” team comms when Ultimate is available, not upon use.
  • Midlane and Offlane bots will now spend more time in lane.

Cards

  • Weekly Card Pack
    • Overflowing Gifts
    • Honor the Pure
    • Vampiric Elixir
  • Bleeding damage from Bloodsoaked armor and Poison damage from Baneflesh should no longer appear as blank on the death recap.
  • Radiant Mantle damage now appears as “Radiate” in death recap.

Heroes

  • Assists will no longer fully reset a deathstreak, will now reduce the deathstreak counter by one.
  • Fixed animation pop after level start animation and emotes for all heroes.

Aurora

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Updated Glacial Charge tooltips to include ability range.
    • Fixed bug where Aurora's momentum was inconsistent after using Glacial Charge.
    • Fixed a bug where Aurora's Frozen Simulacrum would not have an outline during Kallari's ult targeting phase.

Crunch

  • Right Crunch / Empowered Right Crunch
    • Split abilities into different targeting modes.
    • Quality of life improvement to match primary targeting.
    • Slightly increased the length of the Empowered Right Crunch.

The Fey

  • Fly Trap
    • Changed deploy time from 1s to .3s

Gideon

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fix for Black Hole stacking minions on top of each other

GRIM.exe

  • Deflector Shield
    • Deflector Shield now blocks the application of Aurora's abilities, Cryoseism and Hoarfrost.
  • Suppression Mode
    • The slow will no longer apply to enemies unless it deals damage.

Grux

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fixed a bug where Grux could fly off ledges by using Charge.

Howitzer

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Improved timing of Make it Rain so that the FX more closely matches the damage application.
    • Howitzer's dome now correctly opens and closes during emote animations.
    • Fixed bug stopping Howitzer's Slow Grenades from being canceled with the Esc key
    • Fixed bug stopping Howitzer from using abilities after knocking back himself with Land Mine.

Kallari

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fixed a bug where Kallari could increase her jump height when silenced

Kwang

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Added audio during the targeting phase of Judgment of the Heavens.

Riktor

  • Skewer
    • Sped up how soon his chains come out.
    • Increased the width of the targeting mode closer to him.
  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Riktor should now have a more obvious tell when targeting with Skewer while Shock Therapy is active.

Sevarog

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fixed a bug where Sevarog could fly off ledges by using Phantom Rush.

Shinbi

  • Added Dynasty Shinbi to in-game store.
  • Added “Kiss for U” emote to in-game store.

Sparrow

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fix for some animation clipping issues with Sparrow's Hail of Arrows ability
    • Minor tweaks to Sparrow's primary attack FX.

Steel

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Fixed a bug where Steel could fly off ledges by using Bull Rush.
    • Potential fix for Bull Rush not always fully knocking back people.

Twinblast

  • Polish & Bug Fixing
    • Updated respawn animation.
    • Updated Ventilate tooltips to include ability range.

UI

  • Hero Mastery Screen has been updated.
  • Deck Builder
    • Card link dialog buttons are now visible when a match becomes available (s/o to /u/InsanityCrescendo)
  • Minimap Fixes
    • No longer show the color of the river buffs at the start of the match, only update the color once they have spawned.
    • No longer change the river buff color to white for both teams when it dies, the killing team will turn white right away and show the respawn timer. (Enemy team has to be in line of sight to get the white icon and timer)
    • All jungle camps will now show respawn times when the killing team gains vision.
  • UI toggle between Hero Info (Abilities / Level / Decks) has been added to the the Draft Lobby.
  • Fixed an issue where the controller configuration not saving if changed inside escape menu.
  • Updated Welcome Screen tooltip to simply say "Play a game against AI" rather than play a Solo game.
  • Fix for Russian text clipping with Loot Crate tiles.
Shacknews - Shack Staff

Horizon Zero Dawn's multitude of murder machines can range from relatively docile to downright scary. Before you jump into an encounter, it's important to assess your enemies and make a plan for how to bring them down. The various robots have a variety of weaknesses that are vulnerable to different elements, and some individual robot components are especially vulnerable. We'll walk you through how to check for enemy weak points and then exploit them in combat.

Stop and Scan

Before you jump in, take a moment to duck into some tall grass or behind cover, and hit R3 to scan with your Focus. Machines will be highlighted in blue, with vulnerable components highlighted in a contrasted bright yellow. The information delivered from this scan is vital. It will tell you not only what the main body of the machine is vulnerable to, but also what will damage the yellow-highlighted components. Generally speaking, armor and weapons are vulnerable to Tear damage, while fuel tanks are vulnerable to Blast or Fire damage. Machine bodies may be vulnerable to Fire, Blast, Freeze, or Shock damage.

Remove Dangerous Weapons

Armed with that knowledge, but before going after a machine's main body, it's useful to remove particularly dangerous weapons. These components will also be highlighted in yellow, and can often be picked up and used against them as a heavy weapon type. So, before they even know it, take aim at these components with a Tear weapon. If you have a Carja or Shadow Sharpshot Bow, you can use the Tearblast arrows to knock off many components in one shot. If you can remove a weapon and grab it, you can usually bring the machine down easily.

Tie the Machine Down

If you have a Ropecaster, you can tie down many of the larger machines in order to have a steadier shot at small components, or even to deal some melee damage. Just be warned that it will break free of its restraints after it sustains a certain amount of damage, and so you'll want to steer clear when that happens.

Use the Elements

If the enemy doesn't drop a heavy weapon and you can't or don't want to use the Ropecaster to keep it steady, exploit its elemental weakness. When you shoot an enemy machine with an elemental weapon, a circle coded to that elemental symbol will appear over its head. You'll have to hit it with that element until the circle fills. If an enemy is resistant to a certain type of elemental damage, the circle won't be able to fill. Once a circle is filled, it will go into a status based on the type of damage. Fire will do constant damage, Shock will stun, Freeze will keep an enemy in place, etc. The machines will also go prone at this point, often exposing parts underneath that are very vulnerable to attack.

The one element that almost all machines are vulnerable to is Corruption. This is only available in a War Bow variant, and the material to craft Corruption arrows can only be found on corrupted enemies. It has an effect similar to Overrides, in that it makes a machine fight for you, but only temporarily.

With these tips at your disposal, there will be no enemies you can't take down. For more on finding the right tools of the trade, check out our Crafting and Resource guide. And be sure to read all of our Horizon Zero Dawn guides.

Shacknews - Shack Staff

The world of Horizon Zero Dawn is full of machines, which can be hunted for scrap and spare parts. But you don't always have to kill them. Early in the game, you gain the ability to Override certain machines if Aloy approaches while they're unaware. Only a few are available from the start, but more can be controlled after accessing additional Override codes from Cauldrons scattered around the map. To Override a machine, approach it steathily in tall grass from behind, and then hold the Triangle button when the prompt appears.

Cauldrons are stand-alone dungeons, mostly focused on combat with some light puzzle-solving. We'll tell you which machines can be controlled once you complete them for the Override code. After an override, some machines can be ridden, while most will simply fight for you. They will stay loyal for a limited time, unless you obtain the Combat Override + ability, after which they will become indefinite. Remember that some machines–Deathbringer, Corruptor, and all Corrupted machines–cannot be overridden.

Keep in mind that while all of these will be available to approach once the open world is available in Horizon Zero Dawn, some can be very tough. Pay attention to the suggested level, and come equipped for a fight. 

PSI Overrides

  • Watcher
  • Strider (Mount)
  • Redeye Watcher
  • Broadhead (Mount)
  • Charger (Mount)
  • Tallneck (Scan Point)

SIGMA Overrides

  • Grazer
  • Scrapper
  • Lancehorn
  • Sawtooth

RHO Overrides

  • Longleg
  • Trampler
  • Shellwalker
  • Ravager
  • Snapmaw

XI Overrides

  • Fire Bellowback
  • Freeze Bellowback
  • Stalker
  • Behemoth
  • Glinthawk

ZETA Overrides

  • Rockbreaker
  • Thunderjaw
  • Stormbird

With each Cauldron conquered, your options in combat will open up considerably. You can quietly override a few machines and let them do some of the messy work for you, taking out enemy targets or at least softening them up. Check out our full listing of Horizon Zero Dawn guides for more on the open-world action game from Guerrilla.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Total War: Warhammer developer Creative Assembly continues to push out its free-LC for the game, preparing for the release of Bretonnia on February 28. A new trailer offers some cinematic background on the faction's founder, Gilles le Breton.

Bretonnia is already part of the main game, but as a non-playable race. The DLC will change that, adding three new Legendary Lords - Louen Leoncoeur of Bretonnia), Alberic of Bordeleaux, and The Fay Enchantress of Carcassonne - as well as campaigns associated with them. The trailer shows off the lore of le Breton is blessed by the famed Lady of the Lake, and is rescued by the Green Knight, which is also being added to the game as a special summons.

In addition, the full DLC will include new Lords, Paladin and Damsel heroes and more than 20 new units.

If you like the lore behind the game, you will appreciate the King Arthur vibe in the new trailer.

Shacknews - John Keefer

Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin has launched today for PlayStation VR, and developer Double Fine Productions has released a documentary-like video explaining how the game was made and some of the challenges it faced when creating the game.

"Making a VR game is really exciting," company founder Tim Schafer said. "It's like traveling into a strange and mysterious new world. And who knows more about traveling into strange, mysterious new worlds than the Psychonauts? So we're happy to have Raz and friends along with us on this new adventure."

Players take on the role of Raz, who has become a full member of the Psychonauts team, which is trying to rescue its founder Truman Zannotto. The video details design decisions, how the mental powers work in VR, addressing possible motion sickness, and even how some of the story elements were created.

The game is designed to bridge the gap between the original 10-year-old game, and the upcoming Psychonauts 2, which had a highly successful crowdfunding campaign and recently grabbed an additional $8 million investment from Starbreeze.

Pyschonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin is selling for $19.99 on the PlayStation Store.

Shacknews - John Keefer

For Honor is a really good fighting game pitting Vikings, Samurai and Knights against each other in a struggle for supremacy, but some early network issues and nitpicky bugs have plagued it since launch. A patch coming today aims to address some of those.

The patch notes reveal numerous technical and hardware problems being fixed, as well as a problem where Steam controller users were inadvertently getting booted as AFK. Here is a complete list:  

  • Easy AntiCheat
    • FIXED: Updated the error messaging for certain Easy AntiCheat notifications to make them more user friendly
    • FIXED: Error that was incorrectly blocking some players from entering the game
  • Steam Controller users will no longer be kicked as inactive (AFK) when providing controller input
  • Addressed bugs in the the shutdown process
    • FIXED: game sometimes storing borderless in the options on shutdown
    • FIXED: game still showing in taskbar after pressing x. When clicked you would see a small window without borders that closes shortly after.
  • Addressed several PC startup/full screen bugs
    • FIXED: game starting in window mode when clicking somewhere else during startup
    • FIXED: game switch display mode twice on startup
    • FIXED: game switching to borderless when ALT+ENTER after previous switch to full screen failed
  • Fixed the caching of settings on game minimization
    • FIXED: Incorrect window positions being stored in options when game is minimized
  • A message will now be displayed on BOOT if Intel GPU driver is below min spec

Ubisoft had previously announced some upcoming gameplay improvements that are still being worked on, such as balance tweaks for the Valkyrie and Guard Break bug fix for the Conqueror and Berserker. These will be coming sometime in the near future, the company said.

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