News + Features
Now more than ever, deciding which game to play isn’t a short-term choice. Increasingly, AAA games aren’t being designed to be beaten and resold. They’re designed to hook us in for as long as humanly possible, feeding their long tails of constant updates with an even bigger stream of in-game purchases.
With the Battlefield V open beta now done and dusted, I should imagine plenty of you found an opportunity to head in and see what the fuss is all about. The months since the May 23rd reveal have been, er, turbulent to say the least. We had that controversial reveal trailer to kick it all off, of course, swiftly followed by the confirmation of no Premium Pass, and the announcement of a Battle Royale mode, before finally devolving into that cringe-inducing mess that was (and I guess still is) #NotMyBattlefield.
Despite sharing one universal rule, laptops come in all different shapes and sizes, and for a whole lot of uses. Hopefully, they do all fit on your lap, although some of the larger gaming laptops probably have some folks’ manhood screaming for cover.
We’ve all been there. After hopping into the wonderful world of PC gaming, with its high frame rates, lofty resolutions, and the ability to customise each and every part to our heart’s desire, we boot up the latest 90+ Metacritic console exclusive to find it running at a sludgy sub-30fps, smeared with depth of field and motion blur effects, and struggling to hit a native 1080p. A fantastic game marred by the hardware it's tied to.
This week I was inspired by a tweet by YouTuber Mark Brown, who posted an image plucked straight from the Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall’s manual. While by no means the first Bethesda title, it was one of its earliest, and the manual for the game carried a pretty straightforward message - please don’t save scum.
It’s been a momentous week for Nvidia. Monday kicked off with the reveal of its next-generation GeForce RTX 20 Series graphics cards. A generational leap with the usual bump in performance was just half the story though, and it was the support ray-traced lighting that garnered the most headlines.
First, there was PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, popularising the Battle Royale genre in a way we’d never seen before. And then there was Fortnite, the bona fide biggest game on the planet right now. Fortnite is on the mainstream news, it was part of the World Cup, and it’s managed to wangle its way into every school playground on the planet.
Throughout the last decade, we’ve crept into a new age of PC gaming. We’ve thrown off the shackles of the stereotypical desk, mouse & keyboard and tower PC setup and it’s now possible to game on PC in just about any way we want. This includes replicating a console-like setup but with the benefit of top-end performance rather than low frame rates and sludgy resolutions.
There’s no getting around, game sizes are booming. When you’ve got fairly innocuous titles like Valkyria Chronicles 4 weighing in at 71GB, we’ve come to an age where we’ve got to accept some massive downloads in order to play the latest games.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but it’s itchy feet time in the weird and wonderful world of graphics cards. Even those of us with the latest and greatest GPUs have been messing around with them for a couple of years now, and we’ve gone an unusually long amount of time without a noticeable upgrade in performance.
While we’re usually preoccupied with what’s right around the corner, there’s a huge world of retro games out there just begging to be dug into. There are thousands upon thousands of older games, from stone-cold classics to landfill-filling turds. For anyone with even a passing interest in the theory of games though, and how we got to where we are now, it can be fascinating to crawl through these classic games and witness the birth of entire genres, mechanics, and gameplay refinements.