The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous ScreenshotsA couple weeks back I ran an enjoyable feature on Duncan Harris, the video game photographer behind the website DeadEndThrills. Harris takes some of the most evocative, beautiful video game screenshots I've ever seen, and we've been sharing some of his work each week here.

This week has some good stuff. Let's get into it, shall we?

First up, at top:

"I Am The Very Model of a Sideways-Scrolling Beat-Em-Up"

Or really, Mr. Harris? Well then:

I've information vi-o-lent and beat the bad guys to a pulp
I know kung-fu-ian theory and am teaming with a lot-o-moves
with many cheerful ways to shred anonymously evil dudes

(with many cheerful ways to shred anonymously evil dudes!)

Bonus points for the Gilbert & Sullivan reference! Here are Duncan's notes on this terrific shot from Bulletstorm:

Tools and tricks: custom game build, debug camera, custom FOV, 2160p rendering, FXAA injection, timestop.

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

"No Place Like Home"

Yet another shot that captures how gorgeous Modern Warfare 2 was in its wanton destruction. As I careened through this single-player campaign, I always felt like the art team had slaved over this incredible stuff, only to have us pass it by in the blink of an eye, actively penalized for pausing to take it in. It's nice to slow down and dig the lovely particle effects.

Duncan's Notes:

Tools and tricks: game client 1.0 (boxed version), MW2 Unleashed command console patch, high quality ambient occlusion, custom LOD bias, 2160p rendering, FXAA, no-HUD, timestop, free camera, custom FOV.

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots


A beautiful shot from STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl (screw it, I'm not doing the periods anymore and you can't make me). Gotta play more of this game. Duncan's notes:

Tools and tricks: 2160 rendering, antialiasing (SMAA), free camera, time demo recorder, no-HUD, STALKER Complete 2009 mod, custom FOV (hacked game DLL @ FOV 50).

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

"Escape Velocity"

A very cool shot from The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Dark Athena. Duncan's notes:

Tools and tricks: 2160p rendering, antialiasing (FXAA), free camera, timestop.

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

"Hymn of the Big Wheel"

The ferris wheel from STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl, which also makes a cameo in the best level of the first (and best) Modern Warfare. As Duncan points out, "In a city where the average age was just 26, it's fittingly cruel that the Pripyat Ferris Wheel, a decaying symbol of Soviet nuclear naivety, is today its most irradiated landmark. It might also explain where Modern Warfare's John ‘Soap' MacTavish got his superhuman powers and giant bollocks"

Heh. Notes:

Tools and tricks: 2160 rendering, antialiasing (SMAA), free camera, time demo recorder, no-HUD, STALKER Complete 2009 mod, custom FOV (hacked game DLL @ FOV 50).

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

"Crysis Collection #1"

To fill out this week, I'm looking back at Dead End Thrills' Crysis collection, which is truly a game made for this site. They are all gorgeous (how many amazing shots of an island can you drool over?), but I really like this one.

The Week in Unbelievably Gorgeous Screenshots

"Crysis Collection #2"

Too many games that have lovely looking surface water drop the ball once you go under water (I'm looking at you, Skyrim). But not Crysis. I love how this shot celebrates that—few games go so far as to have an underwater view look as gorgeous as this one.

Seriously, go download the entire collection.


The US Army Has One of the Prettiest Video Games On the PlanetRemember back in May, how we showed you that footage from the US military's new "video game" simulation suite? Well, it's back. And it looks more amazing than ever.

To recap, this is the Dismounted Soldier Training System (DSTS), a new simulation tool for the US Army. It's cost the government nearly $60 million to develop, but if you get to use it you'll probably think it's totally worth it, as it's designed to be played not on a screen, but in a virtual reality rig, complete with goggles.

A lot of what you're seeing here, especially in the second video, aren't "levels" in the traditional sense, they're massive outdoor environments being rendered by CryEngine 3 (the engine that powers Crysis 2).

Looks like a very pretty version of ArmA. Which makes me want to play this. Badly.


Even if you have zero interest in sunk ships or James Cameron movies, you need to see this video of the interior of the Titanic, built using CryEngine 3. It's as amazing as it is shiny.

You can contact Luke Plunkett, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.
Crysis - (Adam Smith)

hats give off no heat - SCIENCE FACT

This week, a few mods that I’ve been monitoring but haven’t had a chance to have a proper go at yet. In some cases, that’s because they haven’t been released yet, in others it’s because the hours in every day are sadly limited, and as well as playing games and writing about them, I very occasionally sleep. I even venture outside from time to time, although admittedly not in the current political and meteorological climate. Too chilly. Too bitter. All too real. Onward to fantasy. Preferably with decent central heating.



Update: The original report was misleading - Crysis from Xbox Live Games on Demand does not require an always-on internet connection to play.

The lock-out timer described below only appears when playing Crysis on a second Xbox 360 console - a different machine than the one it was originally downloaded to. If the connection to the Live account drops, you'll need to recover the Gamertag within 10 minutes to resume gameplay.

Original, erroneous, story: You cannot play Crysis, bought from Xbox Games on Demand, offline.

The moment your connection drops, a 10-minute timer appears. That's the window you have to reconnect. Fail to do so and you're dumped back to the dashboard, reported MS Xbox World.

Presumably a similar always-on internet requirement will be present in the PSN version of Crysis, available today.

Crysis costs 1600 Microsoft Points on Xbox Games on Demand or £15.99 on PS3.


Portal 2 E3 Demo (Repulsion Gel)

PC shooter Crysis fires onto the PlayStation Store this week. It's a polished port of the original's single-player campaign, available for £15.99.

Arcade slamdunker NBA Jam: On Fire Edition also courts your wallet this week, while new and free Portal 2 DLC continues the adventures of co-op robots P-Body and and Atlus in a new two-player test track.

There's still no sign of Mortal Kombat: Arcade Kollection - now over a month late - and Castlevania: Harmony of Despair, expected last week.

Co-op shooter Payday: The Heist is also missing after Sony issued a last-minute delay yesterday. Citing extra time was needed to ensure "overall game quality", Payday will now come later in the month.

Here's the full list, courtesy of the PlayStation Blog:

Special Offer:

  • Borderlands - Game Of The Year edition (Was £27.99/€34.99 - Now £11.99/€14.99). Offer ends on 12th October 2011.

Trial & Unlock (PS3)

  • Eufloria (£7.99/€9.99)
  • NBA Jam: On Fire Edition (£9.99/€12.99)

Full Games (PS3)

  • Ape Escape (£19.99/€24.99)
  • Crysis (£15.99/€19.99)
  • De Blob 2 (£19.99/€24.99)
  • Homefront (£27.99/€34.99)
  • Saints Row 2 (£15.99/€19.99)
  • Sega Bass Fishing MOVE Edition (£6.29/€7.99)
  • Space Channel 5 - Part 2 (£6.29/€7.99)
  • Shift 2 Unleashed (£23.99/€29.99)
  • Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12 Masters Edition (£57.99/€69.99)

minis (PS3 and PSP)

  • The Marbians (£3.49/€3.99)
  • 5 In 1 Solitaire (£2.49/€2.99)
  • Street Smart (£1.99/€2.49)

PSone (PS3/PSP)

  • Arc The Lad (£3.99/€4.99)
  • Arcade Hits: Sonic Wings (£3.99/€4.99)
  • Cho Aniki (£3.99/€4.99)
  • Gex 3D: Enter The Gecko (£4.79/€5.99)

Add-On Game Content (PS3)

  • Ace Combat Assault Horizon - F-15C Death Rider (free)
  • Agarest: Generations Of War Zero: Subordinate's Present Pack (free); Extra Dungeon 2 (free); Extra Dungeon 1 (free); Dream Oracle Pack (free); Point Addition Pack 1 (free); Point Addition Pack 2 (free); Fallen Angel Pack (free); Healing Hand Pack (free); Healing and Defence Pack (free); Legendary Goods Pack (free); Logistic Support Pack 1 (free); Rear-Echelon Support Pack 1 (free); Noble Person Pack (free); Shrivelled Chicken Pack (free); Impregnable Defences Pack 1 (free); Status Boost Pack (free); Status Boost Pack 2 (free); Zero Starter Pack (free); Impregnable Defences Pack 2 (free)
  • Atelier Totori: Atelier Totori: Additional Party: Ceci (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Additional Party: Iksel & Cordelia (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Bgm Mode (free); Atelier Totori: Bgm Pack: Atelier Pack (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Bgm Pack: Battle Pack #1 (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Bgm Pack: Battle Pack #2 (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Bgm Pack: Battle Pack #3 (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Bgm Pack: Battle Pack #4 (£2.39/€2.99); Atelier Totori: Model View Mode (free)
  • Champion Jockey: G1 Jockey & Gallop Racer - Music Pack 3: Sound Director's selection (£0.95/€1.19)
  • Dead Rising 2: Off the Record - Free Support Pack (free)
  • Elemental Monster - Booster Box -The Legend Begins (£4.79/€5.99)
  • Eyepet - Lucky Dip Rain 2 (free)
  • Magic: The Gathering - Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012: Auramancer Deck Unlock (£0.79/€0.99); Cloudburst Deck Unlock (£0.79/€0.99); Grave Whispers Deck Unlock (£0.79/€0.99); Foil Auramancer Deck (£0.79/€0.99); Foil Cloudburst Deck (£0.79/€0.99); Foil Grave Whispers Deck (£0.79/€0.99)
  • ModNation Racers - Oil Stain Mod & Kart (£1.39/€1.79)
  • NBA Jam: On Fire Edition - Time Is Money Pack (£2.39/€2.99)
  • Portal 2 - Peer Review (free)
  • Rock Band Network: Bagatelle No. 25 - Für Elise (Beethoven) - Thomas Walker (£0.59/€0.79); Farewell, Mona Lisa - The Dillinger Escape (£0.99/€1.49); Glow - Alien Ant Farm (£0.99/€1.49); Heroes Don't Cry - Free Spirit (£0.99/€1.49)
  • Rock Band 3: Limp Bizkit Pack 01 (£3.49/€5.29) (contains the following songs also available separately) - Gold Cobra - Limp Bizkit (£0.99/€1.49); My Way - Limp Bizkit (£0.99/€1.49); Nookie - Limp Bizkit (£0.99/€1.49); Re-Arranged - Limp Bizkit (£0.99/€1.49)
  • Spiderman: Edge of Time - Identity Crisis Costume Pack (free)

Themes (PS3)

  • Abstract: Flying Tiger Themes - Tokyo Shrine (£1.19/€1.49)

Dynamic Themes (PS3)

  • Abstract: 3D Circuits Theme 2 (£1.59/€1.99); Bridge At Night Theme (£1.59/€1.99); Colored Ink (£1.59/€1.99); Iron Shield Theme (£1.59/€1.99); Lynx Excite Theme (free); Ying Temple Theme (£1.59/€1.99)
  • Nature: Silent Lake Theme (£1.59/€1.99); Sunrise Theme (£1.59/€1.99)
  • Seasonal: A Murder Of Crows (£1.59/€1.99)

Wallpapers (PS3)

  • At The Ready Wallpaper (free)
  • The Baconing Wallpaper (free)

Videos (PS3)

  • Access Episode 003
  • Aliens Colonial Marines Gameplay Trailer
  • El Shaddai Trailer
  • Fifa 12 Gc Trailer
  • PAYDAY The Heist: Green Bridge Trailer
  • Rubgy Wc 2011 Launch Trailer
  • The Sims 3 Pets Trailer 1
  • Yakuza: Dead Souls Confirmed

Some PlayStation 3 owners are reporting that the PlayStation Network is currently down.

Gamers are receiving error code 80710092 when trying to sign in to the online service.

Sony has announced it is aware of the problem and is on the case.

Fingers crossed PSN sorts itself out sooner rather than later. In Europe, Crysis, NBA Jam On Fire Edition, Eufloria and Portal 2 DLC are all scheduled to launch on PSN today.


Today, Crytek's landmark 2007 PC game Crysis was re-released as a downloadable game for both Xbox 360 and PS3. I've already had a chance to play the game and really liked it, in particular its improved controls, strong visuals, and directly-translated open gameplay. It's a strong port of a good game.

Now I've got my own copy, I thought I'd put together a video of some highlights from the first half-hour to give a sense of what the game is all about.

The Crysis re-release is single-player only, but that's okay—it has a chunky campaign that features a lot of variety both in terms of locations and enemies, and it does a great job of imparting the thrill of the hunt. Playing it again, I realized that as much as I enjoyed Crysis 2, I miss the larger, more open battlefields of the first game.

Crysis can be downloaded on either console for $19.99, and if you've got the scratch to spare or are looking for a less expensive, more tropical counterpoint to the just-released Rage, I recommend giving it a go.

You can contact Kirk Hamilton, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.

Crysis, NBA Jam, God Hand and Eufloria Are New on the PlayStation StoreIt's true. You can finally download PlayStation 2 classic God Hand to your PlayStation 3, people. That's the wonderfully wacky beat 'em up from the people who made Okami. IGN labeled it awful, while Kotaku contributor Tim Rogers likened it to "being a professional chainsaw-wielding glacier demolisher at a party where the penguins are going to need a lot of ice cubes."

If polarizing PS2 games aren't your thing—though at just ten bucks a pop, those emulated last-gen games are certainly worth experimenting with—there's much more on tap in this week's North American PlayStation Store update. NBA Jam On Fire Edition, the original Crysis and the lovely looking Eufloria, for example.

But if "new" video games aren't your cup of tea, Sega Bass Fishing, Odin Sphere and Resident Evil 5 Gold Edition are also recent adds to the PlayStation Store. See the full list of new PlayStation 3 and PSP games in the very long list below.

Games & Demos for PlayStation 3

Resident Evil 5 Gold Edition ($29.99)
Crysis ($19.99)
NBA Jam On Fire Edition ($14.99)
Shift 2 Unleashed Digital ($39.99)
Eufloria ($9.99)
Sega Bass Fishing ($9.99)
Space Channel 5 Part 2 ($9.99)
Eufloria Demo
Pro Evolution Soccer 2012 Demo
PSone Classics - Chrono Trigger ($9.99)
PS2 Classics - Odin Sphere ($9.99)
PS2 Classics - Maximo: Ghosts To Glory ($9.99)
PS2 Classics - Grim Grimoire ($9.99)
PS2 Classics - Ring of Red ($9.99)
PS2 Classics - God Hand ($9.99)

Games & Demos for PSP

FIFA 12 ($39.99)

Add-ons & Expansions

Portal 2: Peer Review (free)
Rage – Wasteland Sewer Missions ($9.99)
Dead Rising 2: Off The Record Free Support Pack (free)
Street Fighter III: Third Strike Online Edition Match Pack 1 (Fight For The Future) ($3.99)
NBA Jam On Fire Edition – Time Is Money Pack ($4.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Foil Conversion "Auramancer" ($0.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Foil Conversion "Cloudburst" ($0.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Foil Conversion "Grave Whispers" ($0.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Full Deck "Auramancer" ($0.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Full Deck "Cloudburst" ($0.99)
Magic The Gathering: Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012: Full Deck "Grave Whispers" ($0.99)
Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2012: Alaskan Rocks (free)
Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2012: Chile Plateau (free)
Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2012: Texas Woods (free)

Rock Band 3 tracks

  • "Gold Cobra" – Limp Bizkit ($1.99)
  • "My Way" – Limp Bizkit ($1.99)
  • "Nookie" – Limp Bizkit ($1.99)
  • "Re-Arranged" – Limp Bizkit ($1.99)
  • Limp Bizkit Pack 01 ($5.49) – "Gold Cobra," "My Way," "Nookie," and "Re-Arranged" by Limp Bizkit.

Rock Band Network tracks

  • "Bagatelle No. 25 – Fur Elise (Beethoven)" – Thomas Walker ($0.99)
  • "Farewell, Mona Lisa" – The Dillinger ($1.99)
  • "Glow" – Alien Ant Farm ($1.99)
  • "Heroes Don't Cry" – Free Spirit ($1.99)
  • "Pendulum" – After the Burial ($1.99)
  • "Ship With No Sails" – Neonfly ($1.99)
  • "Stabbing The Drama" – Soilwork ($1.99)
  • "The Window" – Raven Quinn ($1.99)
  • "These City Lights" – Rose of Jericho ($0.99)
  • "Trying Hard" – Loni Rose ($0.99)

Game Videos

Qore 10/4 Edition
NBA 2K12 – Momentous Trailer
NBA 2K12: 3D Trailer
Kingdoms Of Amalur: Reckoning Gamescom Trailer
Need For Speed The Run – Porsche Reveal Trailer
House Of The Dead: Overkill Gameplay Trailer #1
Final Fantasy XIII-2 2011 TGS Trailer
Jurassic Park: The Game – Action Montage Trailer
Metro: Last Light – E3 Gameplay Trailer
Metro: Last Light – Teaser Trailer
Saints Row The Third – Killbane: The Walking Apocalypse Trailer
Twisted Metal Vengeance Trailer
Resistance 3 "Follow Capelli" Trailer
Resistance 3 "No Mercy" Trailer
Resistance 3 "Radio" TV Spot
GT Academy Behind the Scenes – Helicopter Cam
GT Academy Behind the Scenes – Rally Course

Themes, Wallpapers & Avatars

Rochard Skyrig Theme (free)
Rochard Theme (free)
Rage Wellspring Dynamic Theme ($2.99)
Rage Premium Theme ($1.99)
A Murder of Crows Dynamic Theme ($2.99)
Amphibian Delight Dynamic Theme ($2.99)
Bombshelter Blues Dynamic Theme ($2.99)
Flirty Girl Dynamic Theme ($2.99)
Xuriga Static Theme ($1.49)
Tatsuka Static Theme ($1.49)
Misti Dawn Playtime Static Theme ($1.49)
4 Elements Hd: Wallpaper 2
Rochard – John Rochard Wallpaper
Rochard Wallpaper
Lost Planet 2 Avatars (x20) ($0.49)
Rocket Knight Avatar Collection 2 ($2.99)
Red Faction Armageddon Avatar Bundle ($0.99)

Sales, Price Drops & Bundles

Explodemon! – Sale (PS3) (now $6.99, original price $9.99)
Tales From Space: About A Blob – Sale (PS3) (now $5.99, original price $14.99)
Enigmo – Sale (PS3) (now $1.99, original price $3.99)
Jane's Hotel – Sale (PS3) (now $1.99, original price $3.99)
Zombie Tycoon – Sale (PS3) (now $2.99, original price $4.99)
Zombie Tycoon French – Sale (PS3) (now $2.99, original price $4.99)
Stardrone – End Sale (PS3) (now $7.99, original price $4.99)
Bulletstorm – Digital Download – Price Change (PS3) (now $29.99, original price $39.99)

PlayStation Plus

Costume Quest (free)
Elemental Monster (free)
PSP minis - 1000 Tiny Claws (free)
PSP minis - Speedball 2 (free)
PSP minis - Street Smarts (free)
PSone Classics - Warhawk (free)
Resident Evil 5 full game trial
Shift 2 Unleashed full game trial
Eufloria – 20% off
Explodemon! – 30% off
Tales From Space: About a Blob – 40% off
Resident Evil 5 Gold Edition – 25% off
Elemental Monster Online Card Game Booster Box DLC – 50% off
Lost Planet 2 Avatar Bundle (free)

You can contact Michael McWhertor, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.

Crysis launches on PlayStation Network and Xbox Live on 4th October, EA has revealed.

That's a Tuesday, so for Europeans, the game will release on PSN a day later, on Wednesday, 5th October.

The game costs £15.99 or 1600 Microsoft Points.

Publisher EA has described the console download as a "modified and enhanced" version of the single-player campaign from 2007 game Crysis 1. It also features optimized Nanosuit controls, fine-tuned combat and full stereoscopic 3D support, all powered by CryEngine 3.

Eurogamer's Crysis review shot a 9/10. "This is a game that feels supremely engineered, like a precision machine, or a German automobile," Jim Rossignol wrote.

Video: Crysis 1 on console.


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