Team Fortress 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Matt Cox)

TF2_trickjumping_header

I love discovering subcultures that occasionally spawn from videogames, and trickjumping is a wonderful example. Give Quake players the ability to propel themselves through the air by firing rockets at their feet and a momentum-building jumping bug, and what do they do? They make custom maps and challenge each other to perform feats of aerial ballet, of course. Delightfully, that scene is still going strong nearly 20 years on in Team Fortress 2.

The Beginnings 5 TF2 jumping competition began last week, and features three different events. There’s a speedrun competition on set maps, a trickjumping competition that involves doing something impressive on any map, and – perhaps most excitingly – a live race. (more…)

Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

Dota 2

What do you call a Dota 2 last-man standing mode? A battle royale with cheese. No, really – today the gates opened on the MOBA giant’s new Battle Pass-exclusive playmode, Underhollow. Eight teams enter a rapidly collapsing dungeon, and victory goes to either the last one left standing, or the first to sneak back out holding a legendary wheel of extra-mature cheese. It’s the kind of daft cartoon antics I’ve come to expect from Heroes of The Storm’s special Brawl modes, but don’t take that as a complaint – more of this kind of thing, please.

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Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Matt Cox)

dota2

You thought all the European General Data Protection Regulation related news was over, didn’t you? Think again. Don’t worry, this bit takes the form of fun trivia rather than an endless onslaught of delivery companies begging to throw pizza promotions at you. Among other things, you can now see every report and commendation you got in Dota 2 since 2015, along with the reason given by whoever snitched on you. This’ll be old news to anyone who’s already part of our fancy supporter program, but I’ve hardly ever been reported and thus claim my title as the nicest person in the world.

Valve have also given everyone access to their Counter-Strike: Global Offensive stats and reports, as well as all sorts of Steam bits and bobs like your chat history (going back two weeks) and community bans. (more…)

Left 4 Dead 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Dominic Tarason)

Steam Spring Cleaning

I’m not sure if Valve’s latest promotional wotsit on Steam knows whether it’s coming or going. On one hand, it’s nice that the Spring Cleaning Event (running until Monday, 28th May) is nudging players into trying out games they may have bought in sales and never touched, but pairing that with nine simultaneous free weekend events does somewhat undermine the message.

Ah well, it’s an excuse to play videogames all weekend. Can’t grumble about that. Plus, there’s an actual free game giveaway running – take a peek within. Oh, and yesterday’s big Steam giveaway is still live until tomorrow, so try that too. Oh dear, there’s just too many games.

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Half-Life - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (RPS)

The best shooters endure. While the state of the art moves on in other genres and leaves old designs in the dust, it’s as fun to fire a well-made shotgun from an early 90s FPS as from one released today. For that reason, this list runs the gamut from genre classics to those released in the last year. There’s bound to be something for you inside.

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Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Matt Cox)

LoL_Clash_header

Competitive games like League of Legends, Dota 2 and Overwatch are at their best when you play them… competitively. Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty of fun to be had tooling around in casual play – relaxed environments are great for hanging out with friends, or just being silly. It’s how I spend 95% of my time playing those sort of games. That other 5% of the time though? Those comparatively brief periods where I’ve been playing with a full team of people who I know, all on voice coms, all trying their hardest to secure a win? Those are the times when those sort of games have truly shone as games.>

That’s why I think League’s upcoming tournament mode, Clash, is going to be a big deal. Starting on May 25th, each online tournament will cost a small amount to enter, run every fortnight, and take place over a full three days of the weekend. I’m a Dota man through and through, but Riot’s plans are starting to make Valve’s automated tournaments look a bit rubbish. (more…)

Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Austin Wood)

artifact

I’ve had Artifact on the brain these past few weeks, so I’ve mulled over the phrase “Dota-inspired card game” more times than I count. But what does Dota-inspired really mean? Artifact has lanes and creeps and heroes and also some nifty rectangles if you haven’t heard, but that just makes it a MOBA-inspired card game. What makes it a Dota game? I spoke to Artifact programmers Bruno Carlucci and Jeep Barnett to find out. (more…)

Left 4 Dead - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (RPS)

Sometimes you need a hand to hold, so we ve updated our list of the 25 best co-op games to play on PC with a headset-wearing friend or a muted stranger.

Everything’s better with a pal or two in tow, from collaborative puzzle solving to sublime double stealth takedowns. Equally sublime are when those takedowns go awry, your partner shrieks in panic and all hands are needed on deck to clear up the mess. Whether local or online, co-op games offer some of the best fun you can have in 2018.

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Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

With Dota 2‘s huge annual tournament, The International, drawing near-ish, Valve have launched a new Battle Pass to help boost the prize pool. Dota 2’s Battle Passes are multi-faceted doodads including access to new modes, challenges, a sticker album, progression tracks to grind through, and oh so very many cosmetic pretties to unlock and collect. This year, it includes a battle royale-soundin’ mode. Battle Passes cost 7 to start, though you can pay extra to skip ahead in the unlock grind, and 25% of the proceeds go to The International 2018’s prize pool. (more…)

Dota 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Austin Wood)

artifact-header

Collectible card games have been around for decades, but they’ve really been running hot ever since Blizzard unleashed Hearthstone four years ago. Since then, we’ve seen Shadowverse, Gwent, The Elder Scrolls: Legends, Duelyst, Faeria – there are a lot of these things, if you haven’t heard. They all put their own spin on rectangles with numbers on ’em, but they also universally take cues from Hearthstone and, just as often, each other, and as a result they regularly run into similar problems, the biggest two being how to balance a competitive system and how to price card packs fairly.

Artifact, Valve’s upcoming Dota-inspired card game, is definitely using some pages from the same books, but it’s also doing enough things differently that it has the potential to solve a lot of those problems. (more…)

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