OK, so there’s a long 4th of July weekend coming up, and what better timing to immerse yourself in some of the Internet’s heavy-hitting games which have gone free this past week. And the best part is, both PC and Mac gamers can join in the fun. First up, Valve’s Team Fortress 2 is now “free-to-play” with microtransactions available for equipment and character outfits. FPS fans should really check out this amazing game at http://store.steampowered.com/
Now, the world’s most subscribed-to MMORPG “World of WarCraft” is now also “free-to-play” up till your character reaching level 20. After that, the normal subscription model kicks in. Download the game client over at battle.net: http://battle.net/. Both of these games are huge downloads by the way, so you might as well get them now.
I’m not sure how am I going to spend time this weekend, but I think it would be between these two games and inFAMOUS 2 on the PS3. What about you guys?
You like bundles? I like bundles too, having bought the Humble Bundle previously. The group of indie developers behind Indiegamespack.com have come up with a special promotion called the Summer Six Pack. They are giving 50% of the price of the bundle if customer were to share details of the bundle to their friends on Facebook.
This experiment is certainly different from that of the Humble Bundle, and the bundle itself consist of both Mac and PC games. Check out the press release below for more information:
Indie-Games Group Offers “Summer Six-Pack” of Casual Games for a Massive ‘Share’ of Fun at an Amazing Price
Creative Bundle of Games from Independent Game Developers Offers Huge Variety of Titles for only $10 Dollars—or Only $5 When “SHARED” on Facebook
Montréal, Québec – June 6, 2011 — Indiegamespack.com, a collective of six independent game developers, today unveiled a unique limited promotion for game enthusiasts and casual gamers called “Indie-Games Summer Six Pack”. This special offer is a collection of six indie-games for the PC for only US $10 dollars. Because of the viral nature of the indie-game market, and to share the amazing value this collection offers, the “Summer Six Pack” is offered for only US $5 when customers “SHARE” this promotion on their Facebook page.
Variety of Games in Summer Six Pack = Choice and Fun
Whether immersing into the lush Aztec world in a role-playing-game (RPG) adventure, building ecologically-sound ‘Green’ cities, re-building a damaged spaceship, testing puzzle strategy skills on islands and distant galaxies, flexing one’s ability to manipulate a magical, colourful cube, or going on a straight-jacket adventure through a creepy children’s hospital—this DRM-free “Indie-Games Summer Six-Pack” bundle offers a fantastic value for all summer gaming interests.
“As digital distribution started making it easier to bring independent games to market, getting attention and pick-up in a sea of games for a single-title became nearly impossible,” said Alexandre Renaud, executive producer at Ovolo Games, and director of the indie-games collective.
“With the ‘Indie-Games Summer Six Pack’ we are combining six really great games into a ‘multi-pack’ format–giving customers a nice variety of games to play over the summer–at a ‘can’t-say-no’ price. The price gets even sweeter when customers ‘Share’ on Facebook, as a ‘Thank You’ for the community support. Revenues from this promotion will help fund all of our respective studios for new games and initiatives,” said Renaud.
The Games Included in the Bundle Are:
Aztaka – Lush, hand-painted RPG game where the player encounters ancient, newly-awakened gods (both good and evil)—in a battle and race to restore prosperity and hope for the people of the Aztec Empire.
City Rain – In a ‘Tetris-meets-Sim City’ puzzle game, the player must quickly re-structure cities falling into place to be eco-friendly and ‘green’ enough to meet the strict rules of the World Environment Protection agency.
Puzzlegeddon – An inventive mix of puzzle, action and strategy. On the player’s island of choice, they must defeat opponents throughout the many galaxies, beat their own personal profile and play online competing with friends all over the world
Bob Came in Pieces – This engaging puzzle-adventure game revolves around Bob, who has crashed on a strange planet and lost quite a few parts to his ship—on top of it all, Bob is late for work. The player must fine the lost parts to rebuild and customize Bob’s ship while solving challenging, physics-based puzzles.
Vizati – This puzzle game requires the player to manipulate a magical cube and group the small Vizati stones by color, through a limited number of moves. The player must rotate, flip, or shake the magical cube for a game this is easy to understand, but hard to master.
Lylian Episode I: Paranoid Friendship – In this slightly ‘dark’ action/adventure game, Lylian is a patient in the children’s ward at the Hacklaster Hospital. Lylian has an uncanny ability to spew forth figments of her mind into the real world—while causing considerable damage with her long, dangling straitjacket sleeves.
Pricing and Availability
The ‘Indie-Games Summer Six Pack’ is available now for purchase and download for play on PCs and running Windows XP / VISTA / 7 operating system* for US $10, or 5$ as a thank you gift if you share the news on Facebook. Minimum requirements are 2.0Ghz processor, 2GB memory, 2,1GB hard drive, 256MB (512MB recommended) DirectX9 capable video card with shader model 2.0. Click here to check it out.
*Vizati and Bob came in pieces are also bundle for MAC OSX 10.4.11 or later: Intel MAC CPU, 1GB memory, 500mb hard drive, 128MB video card with shader model 2.0
I really enjoyed the first installment of StarCraft II, Wings of Liberty, having bought it few weeks ago and just finished the single-player campaign and at the same time experience some fine Blizzard-style storytelling. However, there’s some mild disappointment that SC2 plays similarly like the original StarCraft, meaning that it is old school.
Blizzard’s recent announcement made earlier today about the impending launch of the SC2 expansion, Heart of the Swarm however, indicates that the gameplay would be more hero-slanted, just like the gameplay expounded by the more contemporary (cough, when it comes to Blizzard’s releases, it’s as contemporary as it can get) WarCraft III. In any case, I’m excited to see that the expansion is coming soon. Who’s up for it? In the mean time, check out the trailers below.
I’ve been playing a lot of StarCraft II on the Mac, but if you already had your fill of sci-fi RTS on the Mac, how about some tactical World War II action in the form of Combat Mission: Battle For Normandy? The developers, Battlefront, have announced the release of the demo for the game for both the PC and Mac.
Combat Mission – Battle for Normandy (CM:BN) faithfully recreates the experience of tactical land warfare in Western France during World War Two. Using the unique Turn-Based (WeGo)/Real-Time hybrid game system of our proprietary CMx2 battle engine, the first installment in this new series covers the three months after the Allied D-Day landings in Normandy in June 1944, from Operation Overlord in June through the Cobra Breakout in August.
At the player’s fingertips are a large array of carefully researched US and German Army formations, equipment, and vehicles in what is probably the most versatile, genuine and powerful battlefield simulation to date. This free demo version contains limited functionality and content to showcase the full version of the game, which can be purchased at the Battlefront website. Check out the demo and the full version of the game over at http://www.battlefront.com/normandy
Remember X-COM? That venerable turn-based strategy series from Micropose for the PC, which involved plenty of alien hunting, resulted in another series created by Altar Interactive paying homage to it, consisting of several games, UFO: Aftermath, UFO: Aftershock and UFO: Afterlight. These games were released between 2003 and 2007 and the good news is, retro games specialist DotEmu.com is bringing these games back. Check out the press release below for more details:
UFO Aftermath now on DotEmu.com!
Paris, France – May 13th 2011 – DotEmu.com, developer and publisher specialized in bringing retro games back to life, is proud to announce its recent association with 1C! New classic games including UFO Trilogy (Aftermath, Aftershock and Afterlight), Kings Bounty Series, Mortyr, Fairytale and Fantasy Wars are added to our fast growing library! With this new announcement, DotEmu confirms its position as a European leader in digital retrogaming and grows bigger everyday to offer its players more and more hits!
An Alien spaceship has entered our atmosphere and didn’t answer to our attempts to communicate. It released great clouds of spore which wiped out most of the life forms on the Earth in 7 days. You are one of the few survivors and survival of mankind depends on you. Gather all the survivors and try to take revenge against the invaders! You are the leader of human resistance. Select your best soldiers for various missions, tool them up, improve their skills, strengthen your positions and repel the invaders!
A Happy Good Friday to all you Christian Nine Over Ten 9/10 readers out there. I was at church earlier this evening for the Good Friday service and my iPhone couldn’t stop vibrating due to all the iOS games-related e-mails coming in, looks like Good Friday is indeed a good day to launch apps.
Not only that, EA Games decided to come up with its EA Games Mega Sale for nearly all of its iOS games. I’ve actually have a gigantic library of EA’s iOS games and simply clicking some bargains resulted in that “You have already purchased this item” error message. Oh well, I did manage to get NBA JAM and Dead Space at 99 cents each. That’s pretty darn cheap. Check out the sale over here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/electronic-arts/id284800461
DotEmu, the retro game “revivalist”, on the other hand has launched Guilty Gear Isuka and 9 other classic games such as Eurofighter Tycoon and Realms of Haunting for digital distribution and these games come DRM-free! Check out the site over here: http://dotemu.com
It’s lunch time and I just caught this new Duke Nukem: Forever trailer on IGN. Viewers digression though, this trailer is NSFW, and it’s pretty over the top. The game is slated to be released in June this year, and yeah, I’m getting the game
Nine Over Ten 9/10 readers out there, you have got to check out “The Humble Frozenbyte Bundle” featuring three classic indie games and 2 previously unreleased indie projects. The three games are Trine, Shadowgrounds: Survivor and Shadowgrounds. The games are DRM-free and run on Mac, PC, or Linux. With all these thrown in the mix, you may be wondering how much does this cool bundle costs? Basically, you set the price!
Part of the proceeds go to the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Child’s Play Charity, so basically you are doing your bid for the greater good of society as well. Enough talk, check out the Humble Frozenbyte Bundle right over here: http://www.humblebundle.com/. I’ve bought mine . There are 7 days left, so you’d better hurry.
There’s this series of iconic oil paintings by American artist C.M. Coolidge depicting dogs playing poker (see above). Surreal ain’t it? This is probably the inspiration for Candywriter’s latest game for the Mac OS X, Dogs Playing Poker 1.0. This poker game is designed to cater for Texas Hold ‘Em novices, advanced poker players and dog lovers alike. Check out the press release below for details:
Miami Beach, FL – Candywriter today is pleased to announce the immediate availability of Dogs Playing Poker 1.0 for Mac, a comic yet competitive take on the old meme. Dogs Playing Poker has been designed for Texas Hold ‘em novices, advanced poker players, and dog lovers alike.
Dogs Playing Poker was a hit on the iPhone and iPaw’d last summer and could be found pre-installed at Apple retail stores around the world. Almost a year in the making, the Mac version adds to the original with fully animated rooms and new characters.
Users select their dog breed of choice and then enter a five-round tournament that spans a junkyard, dog pound, train car, den, and Chinese restaurant kitchen! On the way, users face off against 19 unique hounds and, as if the app wasn’t entertaining enough already, a fox and a walrus have also been included in the line up.
Poker novices can quickly get up-to-speed on the ins and outs of Texas Hold ‘em by completing the built-in tutorial. Experienced players can enjoy the diverse poker playing traits of the various characters and the hundreds of poker “tells” bundled into the game. Dogs Playing Poker is loaded with extra touches that range from the ability to pet and poke the dogs to a feature allowing you to tweet your results directly from the game.
21 unique opponents with vastly different playing styles
5 fully-animated rounds with accompanying musical themes
Detailed Texas Hold ‘em tutorial for beginners
Detailed stat tracking and play analysis measuring luck, trickery, and overall performance
Complete Twitter integration
Mac OS 10.6.6
Pricing and Availability:
Dogs Playing Poker 1.0 is only $4.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Games category. Check it out over here: http://itunes.apple.com/app/id420508804
Raptr, the popular game tracking and social platform for gamers has released some pretty interesting playtime stats for Marvel vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds (MvC3). In over a month since it’s release, the game remains the top fighting game on Raptr’s playtime charts. Based on gameplay data for the first month of release for this popular fighting game on Xbox 360, here are some noteworthy stats:
12% of gamers have beaten the game on the hardest difficulty setting
11% of gamers have won 5 online matches in a row
9% of gamers have completed the game with every character
< 1% have unlocked all Achievements. The average playtime to unlock all Achievements is around 40 hours.
Raptr also discovered that within the first week of MvC3, 40% of gamers who bought the XBLA version of Marvel vs Capcom 2 also went on to buy MvC3 on Xbox 360. This is a remarkably high degree of conversion, especially compared with some recent games Raptr has been tracking. As an example, earlier tracking saw a conversion of 24% of gamers who played Madden 10 and then Madden 11, and a 22% conversion of gamers who played Dead Space and then Dead Space 2 within the first week of the new game release.
In addition, the report shows that there is a distinctly loyal fanbase for Capcom’s fighting games. The report indicates that Marvel vs Capcom 3 pulled in plenty of Street Fighter IV fans (35% conversion from SFIV), but few of these gamers own such popular fighting games like Tekken, Soul Calibur and Mortal Kombat, suggesting that gamers who play a particular type of fighting game are loyal to a specific brand.
Other interesting stats in the report:
Average playtimes for completion of several notable milestones
The most popular MvC3 character combinations
Percentage of players who were able to surpass the highest ranks in multiplayer