Star Citizen Modules Available for Free This Weekend

Star Citizen is at PAX this weekend and for those who can’t make it to experience the title first hand, Cloud Imperium is giving away free codes to access different modules for a limited time.

The client is said to let you take part on the Hangar Module with an Anvil Hornet F7C. There is also the Arena Commander available, which lets you play with friends to fight waves of enemies. In terms of disk space, the client is said to require 20GB of free storage space and is available until March 15th.

The momentum for the title is said to have been extremely high, with the crowd-funding campaign raising more than $75 million. It has expanded rapidly from being a space-sim to a first person shooter and increased in scale overall.

In order to get access to the module, users can visit the Star Citizen official website hereand login/create an account. Once finished, entering the “PAXEASTFREEFLY2K15” promo code will unlock the module.

Thank you GamingBolt for providing us with this information

Game:ref, Hardware Based Anti-Cheat system

So we already have or at least know of anti-cheat software, most pre-installed into most multi player games, but what if a program is smart enough to work its way around the system. Introducing a prototype hardware based system. Game:ref is an input based anti-cheat system, it detects your input from mouse and keyboard and cross references that with what happened in the game; i.e. if you tap spacebar once, you only jump the standard height, not fly into space.

I guess some could see this as something that is unnecessary, you know you’re not going to cheat so you won’t buy or use one. Well what about the other players? Going to a gaming tournament, Insomnia or PAX, could become a lot more fair with the compulsory hand out and use of these little devices. This device will be based on open source platform to allow the maximised collaboration with developers and will be brought to Kickstarter soon with the hopes of raising enough money to become a real product.

Let us know what you think this anti-cheat device will bring to the table on our Facebook page and forums.

Thanks to PCGamesN for this information.

PAX: Australia 2015 Tickets Set for Early Release!

With PAX Australia wrapping up merely weeks ago, the rumors have already started flying as to 2015’s ticket offering. It’s already been reported that PAX will continue it’s support of the Victorian market by operating for the next five years within the walls of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Center (aka “Jeff’s Shed” to the locals) even before the commencement of their first installment in this particular venue, kicking off on October the 31st 2014.

The rumors were quenched in recent days, with PAX officials announcing that tickets will be going on sale for PAX Australia 2015 coming as soon as the first week of December 2014. This was confirmed by many excited Enforcers on my social media platforms singing PAX’s praise – that of positive experiences in pop culture, cosplay, gaming releases and technology.

PAX 2014 was a massive success for Australia, seeing the festival move from the relatively small Melbourne Showgrounds to the much larger MCEC venue and saw them sell out of the 3-day passes months before the commencement date. PAX has successfully provided Australians with something to do with our time and spare dollars, besides the commercialized EB Games Expo alternative.

Given this information, you’re extremely likely to see these 3-day passes sell completely within a few weeks – but it’s a little unfortunate given no companies have made or announced proper plans for exhibiting in 2015. Are you willing to grab a ticket without knowing a single sliver of information about the contents of this show? Or are you confident that PAX will put on a good show, no matter what the issues may be?

At eTeknix we’ve been told some insider info from exhibiting companies that they may not be interested in attending PAX Australia 2015. It’s an amazing branding opportunity, as they have stated, but it’s a rather expensive ordeal without an easily traceable return on investment calculation.

Image courtesy of Kotaku

Defuse a Bomb In This Awesome Co-Op Oculus Rift Game

New Oculus Rift game “Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes” was on display at PAX recently and it may be one of the coolest game ideas I’ve ever seen. The idea is that both you and your friend work together, one of you reading a bomb disposal manual while the other wears the Oculus Rift. Although this can be done with two Oculus Rifts and an in game bomb manual if you really wanted to.

The whole concept focuses around the movie cliche that you need to disarm the bomb, but have no idea what you’re doing! Do you cut the red wire, the blue wire, no wires! And that is where your partner comes into play. The ten page manual features instructions on how to diffuse many different bomb modules, the tricky part is that the bombs the player sees are randomly generated from multiple modules and the reader cannot see them.

You need to describe which modules you can see, while the reader tries to sift through the text for each module to find which bits apply to your bomb and which bits are garbage. Work your way through the first module successfully and you can progress to the next, either that or you’ll be blown up.

The modules are pretty straight forward, a screwed on panel, a collection of wires, a combination lock, or even just a big button that says “push”, but working out what to do with each one will require a lot of team work.

The team as still working hard on the game and say that they’ll launch it officially once the consumer model of the Rift is available.

Thank you Wired for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of Wired.

New Video Shows Halo 3 Running on Xbox One

Microsoft have finally revealed footage of Halo 3 running on the Xbox One. The footage was taken from the upcoming release of Halo: The Master Chief Collection which launches on the console later this year. The developers have already been eager to show off Halo 2, which has been given a full remastering treatment, much like they did with Halo: CE  a couple of years ago. However, this was only to bring it in line with CE, 3 and 4, all of which have had an Xbox 360 release, this means that Halo 3 won’t be getting the full head to toe overhaul.

The graphics have been touched up where needed, 3D models improved and detail added where appropriate, but this is still pretty much the original Halo 3. The graphics are a huge amount clearer and smoother, running 1920 x 1080 @ 60FPS with a new set of shaders, water and lighting effects to really spruce things up. you can see the draw distance, LOD, AA and other things are improved in the video, but unfortunately YouTubes potatoesque compression does nothing for the resolution and FPS of the original footage.

[youtube width=”800″ height=”450″][/youtube]

Thank you Dual Shockers for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Dual Shockers.

GDC Europe’s Indie Games Summit Adds Indie Megabooth, Canabalt C64 Talks

Organizers have announced several notable new talks for next month’s Independent Games Summit at GDC Europe in Cologne, including creating the text-based hit, Steve Jackson’s Sorcery!; building the Indie Megabooth’s presence at PAX and in the press; and porting Canabalt and Super Crate Box to the Commodore 64 – also revealing a new extra with the reduced-price Indie Games Summit Pass.

These talks are part of GDC Europe 2013’s Independent Games Summit, which will take place Tuesday, August 20th, during the three-day conference at Cologne Congress-Centrum Ost in Cologne, Germany – just ahead of (and co-located with) the massive 275,000 person Gamescom event. These likely to be popular talks are accessible via the reduced-price Independent Games Summit pass for the show, but are also available for all GDC Europe passholders. Organizers are also announcing that the Indie Games Summit Pass will now include a two-day pass to the Gamescom event itself, including attendance during the business day on Wednesday, August 21st – a significant additional perk.

The breakdown of the newly added talks, part of an extensive line-up for the day, are as follows:

  • inkle co-founder Jon Ingold’s ‘A World from Words: Highly Interactive Stories with Text’ is a narrative design-focused talk that will explain how inkle made their recent iOS port of 1980s interactive fiction classic Steve Jackson’s Sorcery! a commercial success that reached the top 20 iPad app chart in both the US and the UK.
  • Kelly Wallick’s ‘Building the Indie MEGABOOTH: Showcasing Indies Above the Noise’ talk will discuss how a coalition of 16 indies initially banded together to stand out on the PAX show floor and expanded to 30 and 50 devs at subsequent shows, with an eye towards helping other independent developers organize their own communities.
  • Gamasutra UK editor and Pocket Gamer contributor Mike Rose’s ‘Getting Your Independent Game Noticed in 2013′ talk will offer marketing tips for and analysis of how independent developers can improve their games’ chances of receiving mainstream press coverage.
  • Paul Koller’s ‘Porting Contemporary Games to a Vintage Platform’ will cover the unique story of how he ported indie blockbusters Canabalt and Super Crate Box to the distinctly retro Commodore 64 computer.

These talks join previously-announced postmortems at GDC Europe 2013, featuring Apple Design Awards winners Vlambeer on Ridiculous Fishing and Frogmind on Badland, along with Wii U developer Broken Rules on Chasing Aurora. More talks will be revealed throughout the weeks leading up to GDC Europe in August. The schedule builder is live with a rapidly increasing list of talks already available.

Early bird registration for GDC Europe 2013 is also live, with discounts up to 20% off admission only until Thursday, July 18th. Group admission discounts are also available. For all the latest news on GDC Europe, subscribe for updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS.

Thankyou GDC for providing us with this information.

Game of PAX East 2013: Dive Kick

This years choice for me was simple, Last of Us is fantastic but I was expecting that. Transistor is the next game from Supergiant Games creators of Bastion and looks really fun; despite this, Dive Kick is amazing for many reasons which I will get into in this article.

In case you aren’t up to speed, the game was originally introduced as joke in the fighting game scene.  Adam ‘Keits’ Heart, editor-in-chief at Shoryuken, joked about making a fighting game based on only jumping and kicking or often referred to dive kick. Made especially famous by 2 characters named Yun & Yang in Street Fighter 3, they are the best known dive kicking fighters. Shortly after this, Heart brought a playable build to Ultimate Fighting Game Tournament 8, to which everyone was stunned at how great it was. Since then, the game has gone to Kickstarter to raise $30,000 in funds but was cancelled and picked up by One True Game Studios & Iron Galaxy.

So now you know where the development of this game started and where it is now, let’s discuss the actual game. It is a 2 button fighting game. I’ll let you think about that for a second, let it brew in your mind for a moment. It doesn’t even have a joystick, only 2 buttons. Not only that, but it’s also a one hit kill game. That’s correct, one hit, and it’s win 5 rounds to be the victor. The pitch for the game is that it takes the end game of a fighter and allows you to be the best player right off the bat. Which is a darn good idea, one that I am sure many people are kicking themselves for not thinking of. That’s what truly makes this amazing, it’s not the game itself, but how it’s possible no one has ever thought of this.

The controls are simple, there’s a jump button and kick button. If you press the kick button while on the ground, you jump backwards. They’ve also added a super meter in the PAX build, which has multiple functions. If you look at the shoe on the bottom of the screen, that’s the meter and the arrows are special moves. You activate them by pushing both buttons simultaneously, that can be performed in the air or on the ground. Depending on the character, it could be a kick from the ground, allow them to float or allow them to crouch. When the meter is full, it automatically engages a mode where you are glowing red and are super fast. It’s incredible the depth you can have in such a simple concept. Some other mechanics include gems, which you select pre-fight to improve an aspect of your fighter and there’s also head shots that’ll slow you down for a limited time and reset your meter.

The characters are really funny, especially if you’re in the know, that is to say the fighting game scene. Dive & Kick (featured above) are parodies of Yun and Yang, Mr. N is based on a popular pro-gamer Marn, Kung Pao is kind of a mixture of Kung Lao from Mortal Kombat and Chun-Li from Street Fighter. Everything about them is hilarious, Kick drops a mic when he wins, Mr. N pulls out some food and starts crying & Kung Pao throws her hat into a portal. The cast is great and there’s even more to come, so I’m excited to see what else they come up with.

Perhaps the best part of their appearance at PAX was the “arcade sticks” they brought with them. It was simply 2 huge glowing buttons, zero joystick, and it made a bigger point than maybe some people even realized. If you saw people playing this game on a pad, you might believe the game is more complicated than it actually is. Those “arcade sticks” also felt real nice, slapping on those buttons felt really visceral, a sensation I’ve rarely experienced playing a game. Sadly, there is no word on whether or not they’ll be available for purchase come release time.

Their booth at PAX East was packed the entire weekend, which is a testament to how fantastic this joke turned game actually is. I cannot wait until the release this Summer on PSN (PS3 and Vita) and Steam and will feature GGPO online play.

If you want to watch some gameplay footage, you can do so here:
Streaming with developers here
Pro-gaming tourney: here