Call of Duty: Black Ops III’s Engine is GPU Bound And Supports SLI on Launch

Call of Duty: Black Ops III’s release is less than 24 hours away and players have begun to pre-load the game. As with any last minute pre-order, it’s important to adopt a skeptical attitude and research the performance from first hand accounts. Unfortunately, due to embargoes, key information is usually kept secretive and it’s difficult to make a decision as an informed consumer. In an ideal world, people shouldn’t pre-order video games but this isn’t a realistic notion given the huge array of pre-order incentives and heavy marketing policy.

In the case of COD: Black Ops III, the developer has been surprisingly transparent regarding the game’s features and answered a number of key concerns. Firstly, the game will support SLI and ultra high resolutions:

Additionally, the engine is more GPU bound which means the CPU overhead should be reduced. Although, this doesn’t mean there won’t be a CPU bottleneck on older chips. In most cases, the performance drop on should be minimal if you’re running a relatively modern CPU from the last 5 years.

Sadly, it seems AMD users will have to wait for a driver update to properly utilize crossfire configurations:

Other notable features include mod support, user-created maps, dedicated servers and reduced mouse lag. When combined, this seems like a fantastic PC release which is surprising given Call of Duty’s history. However, only time will tell if this works properly throughout the game’s user-base.

Former Dictator Manuel Noriega Suing Activision from Prison.

What a horrible shock it must have come for infamous dictator Manuel Noriega, discovering the Activision had used his likeness in their Call of Duty: Black Ops II game. The imprisoned ex-dictator of Panama is now taking legal action against the developer for “blatant misuse, unlawful exploitation and misappropriation for economic gain” by using his image in their game.

After being deposed in 1989, Noriega was convicted on charges of drug-trafficking, money-laundering and racketeering in the United States, we he did prison time until 2007. He was then sent to France to face similar charges and is now in Panama servicing another 20-year sentence. To put it simply, he’s been a very naughty boy.

“In an effort to increase the popularity and revenue generated by BLACK OPS II, defendants used, without authorization or consent, the image and likeness of plaintiff in BLACK OPS II.

“Defendants’ use of plaintiff’s image and likeness caused damage to plaintiff. Plaintiff was portrayed as an antagonist and portrayed as the culprit of numerous fictional heinous crimes, creating the false impression that defendants are authorized to use plaintiff’s image and likeness. This caused plaintiffs to receive profits they would not have otherwise received.”

This is a strange case indeed, as it could mean that all dictators who have been poorly portrayed in movies and games could start cases against developers and production studios. Which could get outlandish pretty quickly, just imagine Kim Jong Un suing Columbia Pictures, and winning!

Thank you Forbes for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Forbes.

Black Ops II Apocalypse DLC Coming To PlayStation 3 and PC September 26th

On 26th September, the season of DLC for Call of Duty: Black Ops II culminates with the release of Apocalypse for PlayStation 3 and PC fans. The fourth and final DLC Pack from Activision and Treyarch lets players dig into four multiplayer maps, as well as Call of Duty: Black Ops II Origins – the all-new, Zombies experience that reunites players with the original heroes going back to Call of Duty: World at War, and closes this chapter of the Zombies story arch for Call of Duty: Black Ops II.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II Apocalypse multiplayer maps include:

  • Pod: A failed utopian community from the 70’s has left stacks of dilapidated residential pods nestled into an abandoned cliff side in Taiwan. Its residents long gone, the modernist compound now hosts frenetic combat as players must run atop the pods, as well as navigate their multi-tiered interiors for a strategic edge.
  • Frost: Fresh snow meets explosive gunpowder in this snow-capped European city, where the bridge over a frozen canal separates it into two sides, requiring players to employ multi-level traversal strategies to outsmart and ultimately outshoot their enemies.
  • Takeoff: Fans of “Stadium” from the original Call of Duty®: Black Ops First Strike DLC will find themselves at home on “Takeoff.” Marooned in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, this remote launch site is all about close-quarters combat, combining tight corners with open spaces for intense encounters.
  • Dig: An adaptation of the fan-favourite “Courtyard” from Call of Duty: World at War, where two archeological dig sites in Afghanistan become the perfect playground for combatants eager for hectic, unceasing confrontations. Treyarch, has retained the spirit of “Courtyard” with two major chokepoints, a wide open layout and raised platforms, but has provided fans with a fresh take on the multitude of paths.

Apocalypse also features Origins, the most horrifying and imaginative Zombies experience to date. Players will be deployed to a Dieselpunk-stylised World War I-era France where they will encounter the return of the four original heroes – Tank, Nikolai, Takeo, and Richtofen – from the very first Zombies map featured in Call of Duty: World at War, as well as hordes of undead that have overrun the French countryside’s trenches and fields, as well as the ruins of an ancient and mysterious location.

The Call of Duty: Black Ops II Apocalypse DLC Pack is available individually a la carte or for download by season pass holders. Call of Duty: Black Ops II game is required to play this Map Pack.

Thank you Activision for providing us wtih this information.

Image courtesy of Activision.

MLG Breaks Attendee Records With Largest Competitive Gaming Event In MLG History

Major League Gaming (MLG) has shattered previous records with more than 21,000 competitors and fans attending the three-day Spring Championship in Anaheim, CA. From June 28-30, hundreds of the world’s best players competed for $105,000 in prizes with FXOpen eSports (League of Legends), CompLexity (Call of Duty: Black Ops II) and Polt (StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm) taking home the first place titles. During the event, MLG announced the next Pro Circuit Championship will take place in Columbus, Ohio, from November 22 – 24. Additional details will be announced soon.

In an MLG first, top professional athletes joined video game players on Saturday to showcase their skills in an All Star Showdown. Dwight Howard – Los Angeles Lakers, Dez Bryant – Dallas Cowboys, Ty Lawson – Denver Nuggets and DeJuan Blair –San Antonio Spurs competed in front of thousands. Howard also joined MLG’s Chris Puckett and Mike “Hastro” Rufail in the casting booth to help commentate.
VOD of the MLG Spring Championship can be accessed at MLG.tv and photos are available online.

MLG Spring Championship Winners

League of Legends :

  • 1st – FXOpen eSports – $20,000 and a spot in the LCS Season 4 Spring Promotion Tournament
  • 2nd – Complexity – $5,000
  • 3rd/4th – Curse Academy, Aware Gaming – $2,500

Call of Duty: Black Ops II on Xbox 360:

  • 1st – CompLexity – $20,000
  • 2nd – Icons Impact – $12,000
  • 3rd – OpTic Gaming- $7,000
  • 4th – Curse – $4,000
  • 5th/6th – FaZe – $2,300
  • 5th/6th – Unite Gaming – $2,300
  • 7th/8th – IcoNs ConqueR – $1,200
  • 7th/8th – vVv Gaming – $1,200

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm:

  • 1st – CMStorm Polt – $10,000
  • 2nd – Quantic HyuN- $6,000
  • 3rd/4th – Liquid Hero – $3,000
  • 3rd/4th – Alliance Naniwa – $3,000
  • 5th/6th – StarTale Sound – $1,000
  • 5th/6th – STX Soul Dear – $1,000
  • 7th/8th – EG Jaedong – $500
  • 7th/8th – ROOT Sage – $500

MLG is growing at an incredible rate, as too are many other of the major gaming events around the world from Multiplay, Intel and MLG to name but a few. Even for those that don’t compete, it’s clear that pro gaming is currently top of its game. The next MLG Pro Circuit Championship – November 22-24 in Columbus, Ohio and if you’ve never been to one and you’re a gaming fan, it might be worth checking out the show.

Thank you MLG for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Team Dignitas.

Black Ops II Vengeance DLC To Be Available From July 2nd

Call of Duty: Black Ops II Vengeance is available first, exclusively on the Xbox Live beginning July 2nd. Vengeance, the game’s third DLC pack from Activision and Treyarch, takes players to four diverse locations around the globe, including a deserted tropical island, a destroyed suspension bridge, an abandoned paintball course and the jungles of Myanmar. Vengeance also serves up a new addition to the game’s esteemed Zombies experience with “Buried,” where the undead residents of an abandoned subterranean Old West mining town have come back to claim their home.

“When it’s difficult to see the line between playtesting and leisurely gaming around the studio, it’s a sure sign that we’ve created something fun with Vengeance,” said Mark Lamia, Studio Head of Treyarch . “ From the four multiplayer maps to our new Zombies experience, “Buried,” Vengeance continues doing what we set out to accomplish from the very beginning of development on Call of Duty: Black Ops II: pushing the boundaries of fans’ expectations.”

Call of Duty: Black Ops II Vengeance delivers four new, diverse multiplayer maps starting with “Cove,” where the stage is set for all-out conflict on this small, forgotten island in the middle of the Indian Ocean, with players battling it out amongst the wreckage of a jet that crash-landed during a smuggling operation gone wrong. Next up is “Detour,” a destroyed suspension bridge, high above an East Coast waterway, packed with scattered vehicles, exposed iron and collapsed pavement where the head-to-head action will play out on multiple levels. The third map, “Rush,” sets the stage for fast, close-quarters engagements in this paintball course turned full-combat arena, giving players new opportunities and challenges to use the cover to their advantage. Rounding out Vengeance’s multiplayer maps is “Uplink.” In this re-imagined adaptation of the fan-favorite multiplayer map “Summit” from the original Call of Duty®: Black Ops, players clash deep in the rain-soaked jungles of Myanmar, high atop a hi-tech mountain facility.

Treyarch yet again expands the Zombies storyworld in new, mind-bending ways with “Buried.” Players meet up with old characters and will encounter new ones as they face off against the undead residents of an abandoned underground Old West mining town. A healthy arsenal of equipment and weapons that will be at players’ disposal, but with one very special addition – something so powerful it will also appear in all other Call of Duty: Black Ops II Zombies maps (with the purchase of Vengeance DLC): the Ray Gun Mark II.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II Vengeance will be available first, exclusively on Xbox 360 for 1200 Microsoft Points on 2nd July, with other platforms to follow.

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Thank you CoD for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of CoD.