Microsoft Attacks Halo Online Modders with DMCA Takedowns

It only took modders a matter of days to unlock the Russia-only beta of Halo Online, making the free-to-play first-person shooter available to the entire world, but the killjoys at Microsoft have, predictably, issued these region-bypassing modders with DMCA takedown notices, with which they reluctantly complied.

ElDorado, the custom launcher that allowed players to access Halo Online from outside Russia has been pulled from GitHub, though versions of it have reportedly been found on popular torrent sites.

Microsoft has given no indication that it is considering opening up Halo Online to other regions, so it appears likely that modders will continue to find ways unlocking the game for users outside of Russia.

Source: Dark Side of Gaming

First Gameplay of PC Exclusive Halo Online Revealed

News broke recently that a PC exclusive version of Halo would be coming to PC. The bad news is that this game is currently only being released in Russia, with no plans to launch it in any other regions, at least at the moment. The game will be free to play and is clearly designed to cater to the fact that F2P is very successful in Russia, given that retail games suffer from mass piracy in that region.

The game is powered by a heavily enhanced version of the Halo 3 engine and is created by Innova and Syber Interactive Studio.

YouTuber ‘Noble’ has released a 17-minute video that showcases maps, weapons and vehicles for the game and so far, it certainly looks pretty entertaining.

https://youtu.be/fy1jbrrMfZc

Let’s hope they come to their senses and launch it in other regions!

Fable Legends Will be Free-to-Play

Lionhead Studios’ forthcoming cooperative RPG Fable Legends will be free-to-play, with PC and Xbox One players both able to join the same online matches.

David Eckleberry, Creative Director of Fable Legends, wants the game to be the pinnacle of AAA free-to-play games. Eckleberry said, “The right version of F2P is a very good thing for the world. The wrong version is kind of an abomination, but if you’re very fair to your players and they can play as much as they want, then it seems right.”

Studio Head of Lionhead agreed, saying, “We need scale. PC gives us that scale element, but even with the core Xbox audience, we’ve got a lot to work with there.”

“[We need] millions, probably,” Eckleberry added. “But then, previous Fable games have hit those kinds of numbers. We’re taking on a lot of risk, I accept that and so does Microsoft, but there’s no risk for you, as a player.”

Fable Legends, currently in closed beta testing stage, will be inviting more testers soon before releasing an open beta version soon. This rigorous approach, Lionhead says, will ensure that the game will be fit for launch later this year.

“The honest answer is a really long beta,” Eckleberry said. “There’s a lot of new stuff for us both in game design and technologically: cross-platform, Windows 10, all of the networking we have to do is mostly new to us. We run into game-crashing bugs frequently in our beta. But we want to find them NOW, so we have time to fix them… a bad launch week sticks with you forever. Nobody ever forgets – and they shouldn’t, I think fans are right not to forget it. They might forgive it… but I don’t blame fans for saying “dude, you screwed this up”. I don’t want to be in that place.”

Interested parties can still sign up for a beta invite here.

Source: Kotaku

PAYDAY: The Heist Free to Play Tomorrow

Everyone loves a free game, right? Well, for one day only, PAYDAY : The Heist will be free to play via Steam!

Over the last week or so Overkill has been running an event called “Crimefest”. This event was to pull as many people into their official steam group for PAYDAY  as possible. Their goal was to hit 1.5 million members before the 18th of October. The developers hit their targets early so they have now decided give us a game, free to play, for one day. This will happen tomorrow (Thursday) morning at 10AM Pacific time (6PM for us GMT folk) and will be free for a whole 24 hours.

For those who haven’t played any of the 3-year-old PAYDAY franchise it really is worth having a go. You are part of a criminal gang with the main goal of trying to get as much loot as possible. you do this by doing different missions such as robbing a bank, stealing art or just doing a good old fashioned smash and grab at the local jewellers. There are many weapons and modifications to your equipment and 4 different classes of criminal so there is plenty of content to play within the 24 hours.

So don your masks, grab your favourite weapon and go and get some loot!

Image courtesy of Starbreeze Studios.

Outrageous Free-To-Play Shooter ‘Loadout’ available Now On Steam

Edge of Reality have been hard at work creating what is easily one of the maddest games of the year so far. An MMOFPS that fills your world with outrageous guns, weapons and larger than life characters that bring blood, gore, and every curse word they can think of to the arena.

This game has no intention of being sorry with its loud, offensive, in-your-face attitude to FPS gaming. Blowing holes in your enemy, literally in some cases, then flipping the bird seems common place and show-boating, trolling, and showing off in general seem to be encouraged almost more than anything else, because of course the action takes centre stage.

Gory art style may be a big feature here, but one of the best features is the ability to craft your guns from scratch with a weapon system that makes Borderlands look pathetic. With the game being free-to-play you’ve little in your way to stop you from trying it out and if you’ve been looking for a change of pace it’s certainly worth a look.

Check out the trailer below, just keep in mind that it has [NSFW] audio.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/ry3VCIfPKHs[/youtube]

Thank you Loadout for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Loadout.

Nightmare, Pyrrha & Astaroth To Be Playable In Free-To-Play Soul Calibur: Lost Swords

Namco Bandai has confirmed that fan favorite characters from their Soul series will be playable in the upcoming Soul Calibur: Lost Swords. The latest chapter in the hit Soul Calibur franchise will be a free-to-play single player experience and will feature numerous famous fighters including Siegfried, Mitsurugi and Sophitia. As Nightmare, Pyrrha and Astaroth will also be playable in the game, watch the new gameplay videos featuring these beloved characters!

Nightmare – is the main antagonist of the Soul series. He is the living incarnation of the cursed sword, Soul Edge, the objective of most other characters in the story. Under the sword’s control, he perpetually hunts souls in an attempt to satisfy its evil hunger. He possesses an intense power and performs tough and instantaneous attacks.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/85_6qz-zk74[/youtube]

Pyrrha – is a young nomadic girl who was abducted as a child by minions of Soul Edge. Though she dislikes fighting, she exhibits surprising strength and defense when the odds are against her. Unbeknownst to her, she holds the innate ability to be the next vessel for the evil sword. Her excellent skills with a shield provide her with standout defense and her counter-attack stance proves useful while dodging an opponent’s attacks.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/FpAuSz1KhQU[/youtube]

Astaroth – is a golem warrior created by the High Priest Kunpaetku of the cult Fygul Cestemus for the purpose of seizing the evil sword, Soul Edge. His existence comprises solely of instinctual destruction and slaughter. He is specialized in long-range attacks with his broad axe. He also possesses a tremendous ramming attack, as well as throws that maintain his superiority in battle.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/8rVBJG8dgVk[/youtube]

Soul Calibur: Lost Swords will be coming to Europe in 2014 exclusively on the PlayStation Network for PlayStation 3. I can’t wait to find out how this game plays given that it’s a fighting game franchise that has spawned a single player experience, it also remains to be seen what level of microtransactions the game implements.

Thank you Namco Bandai for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Namco Bandai.

Free To Play, In The Wrong?

Many games these days offer a wide range of things to buy over the internet, be it a quirky little add-on or even a mini expansion (EA’s Mass Effect Series for example). Recently the number of ‘Free To Play’ games has dramatically increased with games such as Star Wars, RIFT and many others offering a much better ‘Free To Play’ option to consumers, which allow you some, if not all aspects of the game for you to play without spending anymore than you did in getting the actual game, which was free of course.

This being said, it seems that the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) has written to companies offering free web or app-based games, seeking information on in-game marketing to children. This is merely the first step in an ongoing investigation that could prove to be a waste or time, but it could also change the way Free To Play games are made, marketed and sold in general.

Personally, I think this whole thing revolves around a few kids getting a bit ‘over the top’ with their daddy’s credit card and parents are screaming ‘foul play’. If you are stupid enough to leave your card details within “point, click and bought” distance of your child you kind of deserve to be screwed out of money.

However, one might question if this would put games such as League of Legends, which is famous for its Micro-transaction deals, into the crosshairs as they too say they are “Free To Play”.

Source: CVG