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Updated: 2 hours 33 min ago

Oh No, Helldivers 2 Has Flying Bugs To Deal With Now

Thu, 03/14/2024 - 00:06

Helldivers 2 players have a new threat to watch out for following this week's patch, as a new breed of Terminid enemies have been introduced to the game. While the Terminid ground forces live up to their name and terrain, these new bugs are an airborne menace that have begun appearing in the game.

PSA for fellow Helldivers:
Flying Bugs are in game now! They are called "Shriekers" | #Helldivers2 pic.twitter.com/9JAz8u2Iub

— HELLDIVERS 2 Updates (@Helldivers2HQ) March 13, 2024

Are they even real? Helldivers 2 director Johan Pilestedt took to X/Twitter to rubbish these claims, rejecting the reality of flying bugs and substituting his own Ministry of Truth-approved spin on the claims. "I've heard rumors of flying bugs in Helldivers 2," Pilestedt wrote. "I want to officially refute such preposterous claims. Everyone knows that 'Bugs can't fly'. And I'm not alone in thinking this. The Ministry of Truth agrees that this is propaganda from bug sympathizers that want to brainwash good people."

What makes the sudden arrival of these airborne assault units--called Shriekers--surprising is that Helldivers 2 developer Arrowhead left them out of the patch notes. While the lengthy list of tweaks and fixes mentioned things like making Chargers significantly more susceptible to explosive trauma to the face, the stealthy arrival of Shriekers made for a fun--and horrifying--surprise. As noted by Windows Central, Shriekers will only appear in missions where they have their own lairs, so you won't need to constantly keep an eye on the sky.

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System Shock PS5 And Xbox Series X Preorders Are Live

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 21:40

System Shock, one of last year's sleeper hit games on PC, is making its debut on PlayStation and Xbox consoles on May 21. You can preorder the atmospheric first-person shooter for $50 on PS5 and Xbox Series X at Amazon right now.

Preorder at Amazon System Shock remake console preorders

Developed by Nightdive Studios, this remake of System Shock is a fascinating blend of the old-school gameplay of the '90s filtered through a modern design lens. It has the same aesthetics as the original, but developer Looking Glass Studios had access to Unreal Engine software. Anyone who played the original System Shock will be at home with this remake, as this version of the game will awaken some nostalgic muscle memory with its emphasis on stealth, inventory management, and keeping a low profile when dealing with homicidal cyborgs guided by a malevolent AI.

System Shock had a storied development cycle, as Nightdive Studios began work on the project in 2015. A successful Kickstarter campaign raised over $1.3 million for the game in 2016, but several delays, a switch from Unity to Unreal Engine 4, and a complete overhaul of the gameplay to make it more faithful to the original followed that success. The game even has the original voice of SHODAN, the killer AI looking to turn you into a meat-puppet, reprising her role for an added touch of authenticity.

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Epic Is Refunding Fortnite Players Who Bought These Two Emotes

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 09:56

Epic is refunding players who purchased The Side Shuffle and Jubi Slide emotes from Fortnite. In a future shop update, players will be able to purchase both emotes in a bundle for 600 V-Bucks.

The Side Shuffle and Jubi Slide are almost identical. The only significant difference between them is the music that plays while they are performed. The emotes debuted in Fortnite roughly two years apart, but given how similar they are, some Fortnite players complained that Epic was "reskinning" an emote in a manner it hasn't really done before. The argument seemed to sway the developer, which will now group the emotes together at a price that nearly makes them buy-one-get-one-free. Both emotes are heavily inspired by jubi2fye, a TikTok user who went viral for popularizing the dance.

The newer of the two emotes, Jubi Slide, seems unlikely to be sold as a standalone item again given how it was removed from the store just hours after it appeared. The bundle will likely become the new standard way to add these emotes to your locker, though Epic has not made that absolutely clear.

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Disney Dreamlight Valley: How To Change The Time Of Day

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 09:10

Disney Dreamlight Valley provides cozy game enthusiasts plenty of tasks to keep up with to ensure there's always something to cross off a checklist. But because the game runs on a real-time clock, those who can only play during one time of day will often miss an opportunity to enjoy their valley when it's sunny. Luckily, you can head into your menu to change the time of day in Disney Dreamlight Valley, and we'll tell you where to find this setting below.

How to change the time of day in Disney Dreamlight Valley

To change the time of day in Disney Dreamlight Valley, all you have to do is open your menu and navigate to Settings. Scroll down to Graphics to find the "Offset Time of Day" slider. Once you've accessed this menu, you can offset the time of day twelve hours ahead or twelve hours behind the current time. You can then set it back to your local time by moving the slider back to the middle so that it says (+0) again.

Offset the time in this menu.

Note, however, that this change of time in your valley is purely for aesthetic purposes. Your villagers' normal sleep schedules and such will remain synced to your local time regardless of how you've offset the time of day.

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WWE 2K24 Feature Has Players Uploading Porn To The Game Again

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 08:33

WWE 2K24 launched last week, but in the game's community creations hub, some players are already up to their old tricks. The new Create-A-Sign feature allows users to create and share custom signs for audience NPCs to hold during matches. Instead of having signs with the usual WWE banter on them, some players are uploading sexually explicit images.

It's worth noting that there is a system that allows players to flag content as inappropriate, but despite that, many of them have made their way to the top of the Most Downloaded and Most Upvoted pages. Some images are featured prominently despite even being days old, making it unclear whether the flagging system is unreliable or if players just aren't flagging them in the first place.

WWE 2K is rated T by the ESRB, but wrestling games are often played by younger kids, and in any event, the sexually explicit content exceeds even an M rating. Having adult content in the WWE games isn't new. In the past, some players used the game's Create-A-Logo feature to upload sexually explicit images that would make their way to the top of the Most Downloaded and Most Upvoted pages, according to Reddit threads that are sometimes months or even years old.

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Save $10 On Princess Peach: Showtime Preorders

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 08:31

Princess Peach is finally starring in her own Nintendo Switch game, Princess Peach: Showtime, which launches on Nintendo Switch on March 22. While the game is still a few days away, you can already grab the physical version at a discount when you preorder from Geek Alliance. The special preorder deal drops Princess Peach: Showtime to just $50 (was $60), though the trade-off is orders won't ship until release day and can take up to a week to arrive.

Preorder at Geek Alliance

Still, it's uncommon for Nintendo-published Switch games to get preorder discounts, so the deal is worth it if you're willing to wait. Just be sure to place your order soon, as supplies are limited, and the deal will disappear if the retailer sells out.

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Video Game Industry Layoffs Are Worse Than Ever. How Did We Get Here?

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 08:00

On February 27, Sony announced it would lay off 900 people across its worldwide games business, affecting several games studios. Among them were Naughty Dog and Insomniac Games, both of which had just released big, noteworthy titles--Marvel's Spider-Man 2 launched in October to audience and critical acclaim, while The Last of Us Part II Remastered dropped in January with an updated version that included new content. The Sony layoffs constituted some 8% of the people working in its games division.

On February 28, Electronic Arts announced it would lay off 670 people--5% of its workforce. In a statement to staff, CEO Andrew Wilson said EA is "moving away from development of future licensed IP [intellectual property] that we do not believe will be successful in our changing industry." In EA's third-quarter earnings report released on January 30, Wilson was quoted as saying, "Our incredible teams delivered a strong Q3, entertaining hundreds of millions of people across our portfolio, driving deep engagement and record live services."

Sony and EA constitute only recent examples of an enormous, widespread convulsion of layoffs throughout the games industry that began in 2023. A startling number of developers and publishers have made major staff reductions, including Epic Games, the many studios owned by the Embracer Group and by Microsoft, Take-Two Interactive, Amazon, Bungie, CD Projekt Red, Ubisoft, Riot Games, and Unity. In just the first two months of 2024, the games industry saw at least 8,100 people laid off, according to a running tally of announcements kept by a developer at Riot Games.

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Cult of the Lamb Is Expanding Beyond Games

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 06:16

The eerie yet cute vibes of Cult of the Lamb are expanding beyond games. In collaboration with Oni Press, publisher Devolver Digital has announced a series of comics and graphic novels based around developer Massive Monster's roguelite.

The "ongoing publishing program," according to a press release, is kicking things off with the graphic novel Cult of the Lamb: The First Verse, which has its own Kickstarter campaign. The $10,000 goal was surpassed minutes after launch, and bonuses include variant covers, slipcased editions, and an array of related merch.

The First Verse features writer Alex Paknadel (All Against All, Red Goblin) and artist Troy Little (Rick and Morty vs. Dungeons & Dragons, Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas), set on expanding the game's disturbingly charming universe.

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Scream 7 Brings Back Long-Time Star Neve Campbell After Skipping Last Movie

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 06:11

Scream franchise star Neve Campbell is set to reprise her iconic role as Sidney Prescott in the upcoming seventh installment of the series. The announcement came via Campbell's Instagram on Tuesday, where she expressed her excitement and gratitude for the opportunity.

"It's always been such a blast and an honor to get to play Sidney in the Scream movies," Campbell wrote. "My appreciation for these films and for what they have meant to me has never waned… Sidney Prescott is coming back!!!" You can check out her full post, including her watermarked copy of the script dated Tuesday, below.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Neve Campbell (@nevecampbell)

Campbell's return follows a hiatus from the franchise due to a salary dispute surrounding Scream 6. Kevin Williamson, the original writer behind the Scream franchise, had publicly advocated for a fair compensation package for Campbell--and he will be directing this seventh entry, marking his directorial debut in the series. Like Campbell, Williamson also took to Instagram to celebrate their reunion, writing "I can't wait to take this journey with Neve and the entire Scream family as we bring back Sidney Prescott."

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X-Men '97 Creator Beau DeMayo Fired Just Before Debut

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 06:10

Just ahead of the debut of the Disney+ Marvel TV series X-Men '97, Disney has fired writer-producer Beau DeMayo, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

DeMayo also wrote for Moon Knight and contributed to early drafts of the upcoming Blade movie. But The Hollywood Reporter said as of last week, Marvel and DeMayo ended their relationship. The report said DeMayo's company email was deactivated and his Instagram account was deleted.

Crew working on the show were told he was gone, but no explanation for his exit has been confirmed as of yet. Marvel did not comment when approached by THR.

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WoW Classic Is Still Growing, And Players Can't Get Enough

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:53

At BlizzCon 2013, then-World of Warcraft executive producer (and later, Blizzard president) J. Allen Brack infamously said, "You think you do, but you don't," in response to a fan asking about being able to replay old expansions from World of Warcraft's history.

Flash forward to 2024, and there's not just one old-school, "Classic" version of Blizzard's enduring MMORPG to play, but four. It's an impressive accomplishment for a bite-sized team of a few dozen developers that exists within the larger WoW development team at Blizzard. GameSpot recently sat down with WoW Classic lead software engineer Nora Valletta and associate production director Clayton Stone to learn more about how, exactly, such a small team is able to operate so many different versions of the same game concurrently, its most recent seasonal experiments, and the team's goals for the future.

WoW Classic, which launched in 2019 as a largely unaltered version of the original game as it used to be in 2004, proved to be hugely successful. Since then, Blizzard first re-released the game's popular Burning Crusade expansion before having players progress to Wrath of the Lich King, the most popular expansion in the game's history. Somewhat controversially, but citing player demand, Blizzard will soon convert its Wrath of the Lich King servers to the game's 2010 Cataclysm expansion, with the Cataclysm beta recently kicking off ahead of a full release slated for this summer.

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Payday CEO Is Gone After Game's Bad Start And Low Player Numbers

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:39

Starbreeze's CEO, Tobias Sjogren, is no longer with the company following the troubled launch of Payday 3 and its ongoing issues attracting and retaining players.

Starbreeze said in a news release that the company has assigned board member Juergen Goeldner to become interim CEO immediately as the company seeks a permanent CEO to replace Sjogren. Goeldner has been in the video game industry for 40 years and was previously the CEO of Focus Home. He has been on Starbreeze's board since 2023.

Chairman of the board, Torgny Hellstrom, said Starbreeze now has a "clear strategy" focused on its own franchises and its licensed games. The board decided to replace Sjogren as CEO after conducting a "consolidated assessment" to reach its ambitions, the company said.

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WoW Dungeons Are Getting A Difficulty Overhaul, And It's More Than A Little Confusing

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:22

World of Warcraft is dramatically overhauling its dungeon difficulties moving forward, and while the changes feel long overdue, they're more than a little confusing.

Blizzard outlined all the dungeon difficulty updates in a new blog post. Come Dragonflight Season 4 and the game's upcoming The War Within expansion, Heroic, Mythic 0, and Mythic+ keystone dungeons will all have their difficulties tweaked significantly. The changes came as a result of player feedback in regards to the lack of relevancy for Heroic and Mythic 0 dungeons, as well as a dislike of having timers associated with lower level Mythic+ dungeons, Blizzard said.

Specifically, Heroic dungeons will be scaled up to what is currently Mythic 0 difficulty. Conversely, Mythic 0 will become the equivalent of a current Mythic 10 keystone dungeon, albeit without a timer attached to it or seasonal affixes. What is currently a Mythic 15 keystone dungeon will in the future be a Mythic 5, and affixes will begin to kick in at Mythic 2 difficulty. All the rewards and Mythic+ rating associated with completing these dungeons will be overhauled to compensate for their higher difficulty.

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How To Stream Or Buy All The 2024 Oscar Winners

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:20

If Sunday's Academy Awards have you looking to catch up on last year's best movies, you're in luck. All ten Best Picture nominees and numerous winners in other categories like Best Documentary are available to stream, buy, or rent online. Of course, they're not all available on every platform--some are exclusive to services like Netflix or Prime Video, while others are only available to rent through stores like iTunes.

To help make watching all the 2024 Oscar-winning films easier, we've rounded up a list of all the winners and notable nominees, along with links to watch or buy. If you've already watched some of the Oscar winners and nominees, you may be interested in reading the books that inspired five of the Best Picture nominees.

Where to watch Best Picture winner - OppenheimerOppenheimer

If you're only going to watch one film featured in this year's Oscars, it should probably be Oppenheimer. Not only did the film win the coveted Best Picture title, it was also nominated in 12 other categories, of which it won Best Actor (Cillian Murphy), Best Supporting Actor (Robert Downey Jr.), Best Director (Christopher Nolan), Best Original Score, Best Cinematography, and Best Editing. In other words, Oppenheimer had a huge night. Luckily, it's easily available to stream on Prime Video and Peacock, or you can grab the 4K Blu-ray edition at a discount from Amazon. You can also rent the digital version from multiple online storefronts.

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The Batman 2 Delayed To 2026

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:09

The Batman 2 has been delayed by a year. The Robert Pattinson-led sequel is now slated for release on October 2, 2026. The movie was originally pegged for October 2025.

Warner Bros. announced the shift on Tuesday, according to The Hollywood Reporter, but did not offer an explanation for the push.

The Batman, directed by Matt Reeves, premiered in March 2022 and earned more than $770 million worldwide. In addition to Pattinson as Batman, the movie starred Paul Dano as The Riddler and Colin Farrell as Penguin. Zoe Kravitz played Catwoman, Andy Serkis suited up as Alfred, and Jeffrey Wright portrayed Commissioner Gordon. Barry Keoghan played Joker at the end of the film, presumably teeing up a bigger role in the sequel (though this is unconfirmed at this stage).

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GTA Online Cluckin' Bell Farm Raid - All Weapon And Gear Loadouts

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 05:00

During the "Concealed Weapons" mission in the GTA Online Cluckin' Bell Farm Raid, you have the option to select between three different locations. At these locations, you can steal different loadouts of weapons and gear for your upcoming heist at the cartel factory.

While you can choose to visit all three locations separately and see which loadout is right for you, we have listed all the weapons and gear you can find at each location so you can go straight to the one you want. Check out the guide below to see all of your available loadout options.

All loadout options in Concealed WeaponsGTA Online

The three locations you can visit are Point A (Marabunta Grande), Point B (Yacht), and Point C (Military Airport). The weapons and gear you can steal increase in strength and value depending on where you go. At Point A, you'll find a low-level gang with basic weapons and armor while Point C features military-grade weaponry and armor.

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Star Trek 3 40th Anniversary Edition Comes With Exclusive Collectibles At Walmart

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 04:58

If you've been looking to fill a Spock-shaped hole in your Star Trek movie collection, you can now set a course for Walmart and grab a fancy 40th anniversary edition of Star Trek 3: The Search for Spock ahead of its May 28 release.

This 4K restoration of the classic Star Trek film is available in steelbook format at multiple retailers, but Walmart has an exclusive edition that comes with a poster of the film's key art and a booklet. Not only are you getting a pair of bonus collectibles, you're saving some cash, too. Walmart is selling the new 40th anniversary edition for $25, while Amazon has the steelbook edition, sans poster and booklet, for $31.

Star Trek 3: The Search for Spock 40th-anniversary edition

Special features haven't been revealed yet, but this version will probably inherit the extras from the previous Blu-ray release, like commentary tracks from the cast and crew, production documentaries, a photo gallery, trailers, and a look at the storyboards that helped shape the movie. You'll get 4K Blu-ray and standard Blu-ray discs as well as a digital copy of the film.

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Get 25 Cyberpunk Novels For Only $15 For A Limited Time

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 04:42

Fanatical might be best known for its rotating selection of budget-friendly PC game bundles, but the site also sells other digital goods, including bundles of cheap ebooks. That's especially true right now, you can pick up 25 ebooks for just $15 with the new Cyberpunk Stories Build Your Own Bundle. There's also the option to snag five ebooks for $5 or 10 ebooks for $8 if you want to save a bit of cash.

See deal at Fanatical

The Cyberpunk Stories Bundle lets you choose from a selection of 25 ebooks, including Windswept by Adam Rakunas (a featured finalist for the Philip K. Dick Award), The Phlebotomist by Chris Panatier (which tells the story of a world segregated by blood type), and Inertia by Mark Everglade (which follows a geophysicist trying to solve an environmental crisis).

All stories in the catalog fall into the dystopian cyberpunk sub-genre, and once they're purchased, you'll be granted lifetime ownership of DRM-free files. The ebooks are also delivered to your account instantly, and multiple file formats, including EPUB and PDF, are available for many of the books. You'll be able to easily add all of these books to any of your devices that have reading apps. As a bonus, you'll get a 5% off voucher for your next purchase at Fanatical.

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We Could Be Getting Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth Queen's Blood Expansions

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 03:42

Square Enix is open to expanding Queen's Blood, the in-game card game in Final Fantasy VII Rebirth. The minigame has been incredibly popular and well-received.

"There are 145 cards in total. We haven't decided anything in terms of future development for Queen’s Blood," said director Naoki Hamaguchi in an interview with Red Bull. "But so far, the media who played it have provided very positive feedback on it, so we want to consider further expansions as a possibility."

Hamaguchi explained that while there aren't any current plans to expand Queen's Blood, there's still the possibility that new cards could be added. Hamaguchi also said that Queen's Blood was inspired by other card games like Marvel Snap as well as non-card games like Splatoon. During the development phase, Square Enix created paper prototypes and simple apps to test out gameplay mechanics. The developers even used a 3D printer to create a physical real-life Queen's Blood Board.

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System Shock Remake Is Out In May For Consoles

Wed, 03/13/2024 - 03:29

The System Shock remake, first released for PC back in May 2023, is finally becoming available on consoles a year later. This revision of the classic immersive shooter will become available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S on May 21st.

The latest trailer gives an overview of the game's story and revamped visuals--just in case you missed the PC version on purpose and have been waiting to play comfortably from your couch instead. As of now, developer Nightdive Studios hasn't disclosed any console-exclusive features or details about performance settings.

Even if you're not a console player, the release date reveal is also a potentially interesting announcement for the PC version. As stated in the December 2023 Update over at the game's Kickstarter campaign, the team has been holding onto the release of patch 1.2 to provide "feature parity with the console versions," according to the written update.

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