Bohemia Interactive Tagged Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Bohemia Interactive RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Arma 3: Apex release date announced at the E3 PC Gaming Show 2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/yj98s/arma-3-apex-release-date-announced-at-the-e3-pc-gaming-show-2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/yj98s/arma-3-apex-release-date-announced-at-the-e3-pc-gaming-show-2016 Mon, 13 Jun 2016 14:12:12 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

During the PC Gaming Show at E3 2016, Bohemia Interactive's creative director, Jay Crowe, tactically made his way onto the stage to talk about the Arma 3: Apex update. Apex is releasing on July 11th, but anyone who pre-ordered can jump into the dev branch and try it out now.

Apex features 13 new weapons, like the fan favourite AK47, and fan hated RPG7, along with a M4A1 like rifle depicted in the trailer. Ten new vehicles, like a series first AWD jeep, multiple armoured transports, a RHIB making it's way back to the Arma series, and VTOL (Vertical Takeoff and Landing) craft capable of transporting another vehicles are being included. In addition to this, is a new 100 square km map set in a southern Pacific archipelago, called Tanoa. Lastly, the Apex update gives Arma players a 4-player co-op campaign set on Tanoa, with a story revolving around a new French speaking rebel faction, Syndikat, causing chaos on the island.

The Apex expansion brings ideas from the modding community, and ideas from the developers themselves together into one cohesive package.

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April Fool's Day is Only for Fools https://www.gameskinny.com/3plk5/april-fools-day-is-only-for-fools https://www.gameskinny.com/3plk5/april-fools-day-is-only-for-fools Fri, 01 Apr 2016 05:26:46 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

April Fool's day is the worst. It's a day when everyone can say something stupid, and exclaim, "but it's April Fool's." That's like saying you were just joking, after saying something racist, offensive, or down right hurtful. It doesn't make it ok, it's just foolish. There are some times where April Fool's jokes are actually funny and creative, but most are someone saying, "hey, lol it's April 1st, so lets say this stupid thing and we will get away with it." Here's some of the dumb stuff that developers, and journalists, do for this awful holiday:

'Adding' random things to a game, or pretending to

Saying you are going to add something to a game isn't funny, because adding things to a game is a real thing. Doing this is just lying, some of them are actually genuinely good ideas, but they are just "lolz, April fools gotcha" bait. This isn't entertaining, it's just lying. April fools is about having some fun with jokes, not leading people on.

Optimus Prime in Titanfall? Would actually be something nice to have, as a special bonus every so often, or having a Transformers themed mode. But no "lulz April fools."

optimus prime titan fall

Call of Duty: Ghosts had some 'joke' names added to the match names. With "YOLO" being Search and Destroy, "PEW PEW" being Team Death Match, there was even a mode renamed to "new s**t" which appears to be a sector control mode, but I'm unsure of the original name. The worst offense is "bro, do you even cap?" Why is this funny? It's not even clever -- merely adding some random internet slang isn't intelligent or satirical. Being the thing isn't funny, it's just being the thing.

The few times I've found this funny is with the Pandaren race being added to World of Warcraft. While it was initially an April Fool's joke, it has actually been added to the game. That's the part I find strange. The initial idea was humorous, but why add it to the game? Why is that a good idea? Pandas are great, and Kung Fu Panda probably made people want it, I just don't see why it was needed as a paid expansion.

Fake announcements

Ever hear of the PlayStation Flow? While it may be a joke on peripherals, there is no subtlety in the jokes. It's an idea which is an ok joke for the first 20 seconds, and keeps going, and going. It just screams, this is the worst.

Knights of the Old Republic 3 is supposedly coming to Xbox One and PS4, this isn't funny, or a good prank. It's just annoying, confusing, and upsetting.

Kickstarter dropped the "e" to make it Kickstartr and acting like it's real. April Fool's isn't about making people angry or confused, but about making them laugh. And what about dropping the "e" is actually funny? It's not.

kickstarter kickstartr

I'm not all scrooge, I can laugh... seriously.

We all remember Arma 3's "Karts DLC". You don't? Oh... well let me remind you. The first piece of DLC for Arma 3 initially started as a joke. While funny at first, the fun quickly wore off. And then karts were added to Arma 3. This is an example of something being jokingly added, and then actually charged for. Unlike Blizzard with Mists of Pandaria, all proceeds were very kindly donated to charity by Bohemia Interactive -- something I respect them for, as they aren't taking it too seriously, and giving back. This year, Bohemia has gone a step further by selling a new fragrance, Eau De Combat, in a genuinely funny satirical take on perfume adverts.

We all know Roach, the horse from The Witcher 3, has some odd bugs. Well, turns out they were put there on purpose, because the horse simulation was just too good. Bugs are a way to remind players that the game world isn't the real world, so they aren't really bugs, are they? This is April Fool's done right, where someone is taking something and parodying it. It's an obvious joke, and not just there "for the views, but mostly lulz."

Another great example came from 2014, when CD Projekt Red showed that the Igni sign is real. This received a clap from me.

For another (and final) April Fool's joke done right, we can look to Tom Francis, the creator of Gunpoint who's currently working on Heat Signature. He has changed all the art and music for Heat Signature, due to legal trouble with John Roberts, the artist. Why is this good satire? Because it says "[untrue]" in the title. There is no confusion, you know it's a joke from the outset, so you can laugh at everything.

Fools of April isn't always a total bust

Those are just some examples of why April 1st has been renamed to "fools of April". There is, thankfully, some light at the end of the tunnel, with some spoofs, laughs, and good gags to be had. But why can't we all just be a bit more creative? And please stop selling these so called 'jokes', because that isn't funny. I would go watch a comedian if I wanted to buy humor.

Do you like, hate, or otherwise feel ambivalent about April 1st? Let me know in the comments below.

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DayZ Standalone Sales Hit 3 Million Mark While Still In Development https://www.gameskinny.com/olm9o/dayz-standalone-sales-hit-3-million-mark-while-still-in-development https://www.gameskinny.com/olm9o/dayz-standalone-sales-hit-3-million-mark-while-still-in-development Mon, 26 Jan 2015 11:37:23 -0500 Akeem Favor

Bohemia Interactive has announced that sales for the standalone version of zombie survival MMO DayZ have reached 3,000,000. 

The standalone version of DayZ, which is still in its alpha phase on Steam, is based on the original ARMA 2 mod by Dean Hall.

In the game, players attempt to survive against zombies and other players in the fictional post-Soviet country of Chernarus. 

It's been just over a year since the DayZ standalone was released on Steam Early Access. 

The studio thanked its customers on its blog with Project Lead David Durcak stating his own appreciation for the fanbase: 

"We would like to say thank you to every single one of the three million players, that have joined us on the journey of making DayZYou all have helped make DayZ the best open world, zombie survival game."

Behind the Scenes

DayZ One Year Anniversary Development Video

There was concern by some DayZ fans about the game when Dean Hall announced his decision to leave the project in 2014 after working on its development for nearly two years. 

But while Dean Hall has gone on to create his own studio, Rocketwerkz, development of DayZ has continued.

The DayZ team has been extremely open about the progress of the game going so far as to release their 2015 development plan schedule to the public last month and give weekly status updates via the game's blog and forums. 

According to Bohemia Interactive, one of the largest changes in the development of the game was rewriting its engine to provide render upgrades and make use of DirectX 11. 

The new engine, Enfusion, will steadily be replacing Real Virtuality and the developers claim that Enfusion will make it easier to create official content and modifications for not only the team but other content creators. 

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DayZ Creator Dean Hall Announces Formation of New Indie Studio Rocketwerkz https://www.gameskinny.com/7wd0y/dayz-creator-dean-hall-announces-formation-of-new-indie-studio-rocketwerkz https://www.gameskinny.com/7wd0y/dayz-creator-dean-hall-announces-formation-of-new-indie-studio-rocketwerkz Sun, 14 Dec 2014 16:16:58 -0500 Michael Falero

The zombies of DayZ are getting a change in management.

Dean Hall, the mastermind behind the zombie survival horror mod, has left Bohemia Games to start his own indie studio in Dunedin, New Zealand.

While this decision was a few months in the making, Hall has made it clear that he's looking to develop the standalone version of DayZ and other games as part of a smaller, more-focused development team.

On his Twitter page, Hall put out a notice for interested programmers and artists for Rocketwerkz. 

New Zealand news outlet Stuff is reporting that Rocketwerkz has posted two jobs on TradeMe, one of the country's largest online job boards. The posts are for a "Video Game Developer" and "Video Game Artist."


Hall had worked at Bohemia Interactive, the Czech developer of DayZ's source game ArmA 2, since August 2012. In those two years he's led a team to develop a standalone DayZ game, which is still in Early Access alpha in the Steam store. 

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Arma 3 Helicopters DLC Out Now https://www.gameskinny.com/0umr8/arma-3-helicopters-dlc-out-now https://www.gameskinny.com/0umr8/arma-3-helicopters-dlc-out-now Thu, 06 Nov 2014 03:36:55 -0500 Pierre Fouquet

A new DLC for Arma 3 called Helicopters DLC out now. The DLC includes new helicopters and has been released along side a free update full of new vehicle-related features.

The CH-67 Huron Helicopter

This is, in look and usage, similar to the currently used Chinook. It's primarily used for transportation of troops and equipment. This also means it has a tandem rotor system, each rotor with its own engine, making this a very powerful lifter but also very large. There are two variants in game - armed and transport versions.

The Mi-290 Taru Helicopter

This is also used for transportation of troops and equipment, but different from the CH-67 Huron it has a modular design. You are able to attach different modules to it changing the primary focus. When its troop carrying module is attached (see image here) your troops sit in a 8 seater platform suspended from the helicopters airframe. Which causes your troops to be more exposed, but will allow for quick loading and unloading. It has a coaxial rotor system, meaning that there is no tail rotor (or rear anti torque), instead each rotor spins in different directions to counter a helicopters tendency of spinning in place.

Other additions with the DLC include Time Trials for you to put your pilot skills to the test, and a Sling Loading Showcase. I will talk about sling loading later. 

Free platform update

Alongside the DLC is also included a free platform update, available to all owners of Arma 3 whether you buy the DLC or not.

The update includes:

  • A sling loading system, which was previously only available with mods. This system allows you to carry vehicles and objects (eg. ammo boxes). The two new helicopters available in the DLC are able to use this system.

The CH-67 Huron using the sling loading system on a container.

  • A whole new, and optional flight model, dubbed the RotorLib helicopter flight model. This is a similar model to Take on Helicopters, so expect much more realistic handling of all helicopters with this on.
  • A new VR training course for you to get to grips with the new RotorLib flight model.
  • New objects, including ropes, cranes and tool boxes. This is mostly for the Arma 3 content creation community more than the average player.
  • A new multiplayer mode called Support. In this mode you are tasked with transporting friendly units around the battlefield, for a sector control type game mode. Part of this mode also includes logistical support (transporting supplies or vehicles) and medevac.
  • You can now fire from vehicles. This means without getting out your helicopter or ground vehicle you can engage enemies. Of course not all vehicles will work with this, only ones which are you are outside, like in the back of the Off-road or when on the side of the MH-9 Hummingbird.

 Firing from the back of an Off-road.

Arma 3 Helicopters DLC will set you back €12.99, £10.99 or $15.99, buy it from the BIS Store, or from Steam. If you bought the DLC Bundle you will have all the extra content as well as the upcoming Marksmen DLC. Make sure to check if you have DLC before purchasing. If you are unsure how see, check here.

What do you think of the price of this DLC against the amount of content it offers? Is a good price, too much or not enough?

I would say that the price would cover all the free content as well as DLC, but is a little steep for just the DLC. Especially considering you can only use the sling loading system if you have the DLC.

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Comments on Dean Hall's Planned Departure from DayZ https://www.gameskinny.com/v3wvy/comments-on-dean-halls-planned-departure-from-dayz https://www.gameskinny.com/v3wvy/comments-on-dean-halls-planned-departure-from-dayz Thu, 27 Feb 2014 11:07:12 -0500 Hobo With A Keyboard

As of Monday, Dean Hall announced that he will be stepping down as lead developer on the title DayZ sometime this year.

I have to admit, this all concerned me at first. The creator of the game plans to leave the project at an indeterminable date sometime in the year? Well, surely he's guaranteed that a reliable team is there to take the reins. And there certainly is.

Bohemia Interactive are a competent ally in developing this game. They also used a similar engine to develop Arma II and Arma III. That's okay then. But still I somehow feel a bit deceived. I can't help re-reading the comments that he made in his interview. He seemed to make off the cuff remarks that antagonised me. His story didn't seem straight, and his announcement seemed somewhat convoluted.

Hall v. Perssons

Perhaps I have taken his words somewhat cynically, and over analysed his statements. But something just doesn't feel right about his remarks. There isn't a solid direction in his reasoning for departure. Now I will accept that, if he leaves at the end of the year around the time of a beta release, that there is not too major an issue. But even still, how often is it that the original maker of a video game abandons the project prior to a final release?

He compares his situation to that of Markus Perssons's (the founder of Minecraft), who left the game as lead developer shortly after its release. He reasons that he would rather be honest about the reality that he intends to leave, as opposed to it coming as a shock closer to the finalising of the game. But even if he left at the very end of 2014, it is unlikely that DayZ will have even made it to the early Beta phase. I think it's an unfair comparison.

Viewpoint

After feeling concerned, I became very angered by this announcement, although I feel I misinterpreted it. I was under the impression that he was leaving the project full-time as of that announcement, but that does not appear to be the case.

However,  just by making this announcement he has denounced his credibility in the role of progressing the game. One comment that irked me was that he felt "like DayZ is a fundamentally flawed concept... It's not the perfect game; it's not the multiplayer experience, and it never can be, [with] the absolute spark that I want in it." He's conceded to the notion that this game cannot be what he wants it to be. It's like he has given up before even resigning. It seems out of character for the Dean Hall that I have followed from the late mod era up until now. He typically seems full of enthusiasm for this project. Now that he's hit a hurdle of doubt in his mind, it's game over.

I recently did an article on the state of Early Access, and its flaws and potential advantages. As it is an unprecedented concept, and cannot really be compared to any other entertainment mediums, it has a very unpredictable future. I mentioned the potential for game makers to turn a profit and ditch the project before completion; but Dean "Rocket" Hall was the LAST person I would expect to abandon an early access project prematurely. It did not even come into question in my mind. The unpredictability of Early Access on the effects of developers' human psyche has truly shone through in this case.

I can't help but question the genuineness of his reasoning.

He seems to view himself as a negative impact upon DayZ's future : "I am a grenade. I have a specific use. I'm really good at risk-taking and making other people take risks, I've always been good at that in my life. Like you say [the interviewer, Robert Purchese], maybe I've got the gift of the gab, so I can talk, I can explain something, I can talk people up to the ledge and get them to jump off it. But eventually, that's the bad person to have. Eventually, you don't want the guy telling you to go over the top and get through. So at some point I'll be a disaster for the project, at least in a leadership role."

He even hinted at this a month prior in an interview with Edge, stating that "there’ll be a time when my full-on involvement is finished, and I think a lot of the fans will agree with that. It’s dangerous, because I like to push for a lot of things that could become bad for the project." It's almost like he has devised a self-fulfilling prophecy that doubts his own competence in regards to completing the title. Perhaps he fears failure?

Someone whose "plan" is so diffused, and bordering on non-nonsensical, rings alarm bells for me. One moment he is saying he's dangerous for the project, then is saying that he'll be there for as long as necessary: "I'll always be involved with it; there's no way to escape it." If he contradicts himself like this in interviews, then what is he saying that actually makes sense?

 He seems to be desperately attempting to reason his distancing to the audience--the DayZ community--in a very vague and obscure manner. He wants to make sure that they know his role in developing the game further could be detrimental. But he has no proof of this. The statement, at least to me, makes little sense.

He started this game from the ground up, but he could ruin the game. That does not correlate in my mind to say the least. Is he not using his "gift of the gab" to talk the DayZ community off of a ledge; sweet-talking them into a false sense of security to the clifftop? It comes across as a pseudo self-loathing initiative taken to alleviate flak off of him from fans and the community.

I find it hard to deny that the community has been somewhat duped. Especially if he leaves, let's say, by Autumn. By being (admittedly commendably) honest in order to avoid an unpredictable surprise when he announces stepping down, he has made the entire future of DayZ seem more unpredictable. He has talked of missing home for being another reason for his departure. He's also openly discussed his plans for leaving the BI studio in Prague, and starting a new one in his home country of New Zealand.

But shouldn't he stick this project out first, and perhaps take a break by going back home for several weeks in the meantime? I can't say he doesn't deserve that. But talks of numerous projects before finishing the most important one (the one that his community has now invested millions into) worries me, and makes me wonder if he won't do this again for his next concept.

Community Involvement

What also upset me were his comments in regards to the Early Access community itself. In his recent interview with Edge, he said that "...the massive amount of people playing DayZ isn’t so much for me about having a huge QA team. This is something that frustrates me sometimes where people will say that it’s terrible that we’re making people pay to be QA (Quality Assurance). We have our own testers, and we have a good idea of the bugs in the game. Obviously some slip through and that’s where the community is very useful, but we’d be getting that feedback from our small testing team eventually anyway." Although he commends the community in the same interview, stating that "...the community steers a lot of our approach. I really enjoy engaging with them;" I feel that denouncing their efforts in say bug reports, for example, is somewhat condescending--even if he is right.

The Alpha's disclaimer states:

"Please do not purchase it [DayZUnless you want to actively support development of the game."

Now I understand that to hear voices amongst a million in regard to complaints is nigh on impossible. But everybody is not actually 'actively' supporting in such a manner. Most are impatient gamers wishing to play, such as myself. So to disregard the genuinely active side of the community, as a bitter retort to Early Access cynics, is a real shame.

With this disclaimer, the DayZ team wins either way. Impatient fans cannot complain about faults within the extremely buggy alpha, but also, die-hard fans are falsely made to feel special in regards to their contribution towards the final output. Although I was part of the former portion of purchasers, I have still intermittently scoured the forums, and the community has been helpful in aiding me combat bug issues; ways to counter existing bugs, that the development team most likely wouldn't have time to address to average players like myself. He mentions the community, but admits that the development team would probably still sort all of the community's issues regardless. I feel by saying this that he's almost negating the importance of the voice of the community.

Conclusion

Maybe I am being unfair regarding Hall's decision. Maybe, as a paying customer, I've taken it too personally. Maybe I should blame myself for investing in an unfinished game (most likely). But how this will truly affect the final product is unknown.

Regardless, I think it was a bad decision to make such an announcement at this time. The game is very  far from finished, at least in terms of features. The mod, aside from having residential houses players can actually enter, still has far more items/weapons at hand and the ability to utilise cars and helicopters. None of these essential features are beyond development in the standalone edition, and now the lead developer wants out.

I have to say, this has seriously dented my faith in the future of Early Access, and I don't intend to make any future investments related to this concept.

I do not want to denote that perhaps the rather large cash-flow has played a part in this decision, but perhaps it has consciously or otherwise had Hall change his outlook on his future. I really don't think he will let DayZ wither and die, but maybe the intense work ethic on this one project has subsided now that he feels he has successfully achieved his goal of releasing a popular title.

I cannot speak on his behalf so I will not, because it would seem to cheap to do so in regards to the idea that he's "sold out" or become complacent--because I really don't think that is the case. If anything, the money has made him see opportunity in creating newer and better projects in the future. I just wish that he'd acknowledge the gravity of this decision, and support his fan base for the long haul. I think a majority of the community would really like him to see out his work up until the end.

Interview quotes from here:

  • http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2014-02-24-dean-hall-to-leave-bohemia-and-step-down-as-leader-of-dayz
  • http://www.edge-online.com/features/dean-rocket-hall-on-whats-next-for-dayz-the-early-access-game-thats-sold-a-million/

Images from here:

  • https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/3706677526/6dcffff6117c23a60656dafafd20d204.jpeg
  • http://static.bafta.org/images/width470/markus-persson-16881.jpg
  • http://images.fineartamerica.com/images-medium-large-5/fiscal-cliff-financial-cartoon-optionsclick-blogart.jpg
  • http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/dams/images/cartoon.jpg
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Game Industry Misbehaving Series: Steam Early Access, Fraudulent or Truthful? https://www.gameskinny.com/pjdnj/game-industry-misbehaving-series-steam-early-access-fraudulent-or-truthful https://www.gameskinny.com/pjdnj/game-industry-misbehaving-series-steam-early-access-fraudulent-or-truthful Wed, 26 Feb 2014 03:30:47 -0500 Pierre Fouquet

Does the Early Access program steal your money, or use it in creative ways?

Think About the Developer's Rent

Developers are humans and so need to pay for everything. They need to have a roof, and some food, as well as all the other nice things humans need.

Without this sort of system, and no publishers to back the projects, how can small studios make their games? The answer is that they can't, without sacrificing such luxuries like food, or water, or a place to sleep.

Money Grabbers

Developers need houses, yes, but that's only the developers who are just starting out. Take other developers who have already got a publishing deal. Games like Arma 3 or DayZ, in this case the developers are the publishers.

However this does not stop the fact they already have all the funding and houses they need.

So why would these people put an unfinished game on Steam Early Access?

To milk money from an unfinished game and from their fanbase is why.

Glitches were very obvious in the Arma 3 Alpha and Beta.

What Would the Developers Point of View be?

You, the consumer, may see this as a money grabbing scheme from the Bohemia Interactive teams, but they see this as showing you their game. They want to show you how it grows, expands and improves. Simply put to get the game, in an early stage, into gamers hands. They can then optimise the experience to fit the gamers wants and needs, to shape the game how gamers want it, while keeping to their vision. Balancing the game, stress testing the game and generally testing the game, to make sure it releases with as little bugs as possible. Indeed, Arma 3 is the least buggy Arma game, with the best AI.

DayZ was held off for a long time untill Dean 'Rocket' Hall, the creator of the DayZ mod and the head honcho for the DayZ team, held off the release untill he was happy it was ready to be playable, and in a reasonable condition. (Mr Hall is leaving DayZ soon).

DayZ Standalone has a few glitches, but nothing more than the mod.

Should you Always Trust Developers?

Do you trust a developer who releases a game which isn't created to its full potential, making the game broken and difficult to play? The outrage at the Battlefield 4 multiplayer being a prime example of this leading to a significant number of gamers demanding refunds. This then led players (like you) towards not trusting DICE as much as they may once have. So why when a game like, 7 Days to Die comes out (and you are made to pay full price for it, if you want it) is there almost no backlash? Do we just accept poor quality or down right broken games because it bears the mark pre-alpha or the like? Are gamers buying into this purely because the games bear the mark, "Steam Early Access"? Do you have any ideas?

7 Days to Die may have good ideas, but it doesn't make them look good, or work.

Who is to stop a developer just never finishing their game? What if they run out of money because they can't manage said money, and so cannot pay for staff or office/house rent? Will they, in effect, been stealing the money, of possibly thousands of gamers, on a false promise? In my books, that's fraud.

What is an Alpha or Beta for?

For developers:

  • Alpha 
    • When game's story has been implemented, but often unfinished
    • A small part of the world has been made
    • Very buggy or unoptimised
  • Beta
    • When full game is playable from start to finish
    • There are bugs (sometimes game breaking)
    • Optimisation issues a plenty.

For the consumer theses should mean something a bit different.

  • Pre-Alpha
    • When the core concept is there.
    • Game isn't fleshed out.
  • Alpha
    • Building upon the pre-alpha
    • Core concept works and is fully playable
    • Minimal game breaking bugs.
    • Like the state DayZ is currently in.
  • Beta 
    • Fully functional
    • There are some optimisation issues
    • Servers need to be stress tested, due to online features
    • Such as the Titanfall Beta
Attach These Definitions to 7 Days to Die

Is 7 Days to Die in a fit state to be released? I don't think so, but for a game like Interstellar Marines it's ok right? Errr... I'm not sure, do you want tell me what you think?

Interstellar Marines has one of the most open developers out there, Zero Point Software. They often release 'behind the scenes' video logs (vlogs) for small announcements, and they release previews for upcoming updates. All of this really shows how basic the game is, and where they want to go with it. But the game is functional and has only minor bugs, well with the exceptions, and the issues that come with PC gaming, it will crash. Overall the game is very stable, I think in part it's due to Zero Point developing it in public eye and in small sections. It's in a pre-alpha stage, where there is only multiplayer, and no single player as of yet. So this is a good thing right? Even if I do personally like the game, even in its current state, I am waiting for it to be fully released to play it as much as I want to. I payed for it as I wanted to fund the game, just like I wanted to do with their unfortunate Kickstarter. Is this how Early Access should be used? To fund a game in a similar way that Kickstarter uses?

Interstellar Marines was released very barebones, but works. Almost flawlessly.

Is Early Access Just like Kickstarter?

In some ways yes. You give a developer money, before the game is out, to help fund the development process. Only the game has to be playable right? Well not always, as I have explained before, but the developer does have more of an inclination to finish the game as it's playable, and in the publics hands. Which is always a good thing. Look at Broken Age for a great Kickstarter success.

The game may have gone over budget, but it's still great.

The good side of Alphas or Betas

As I have said before, the Early Access Program allows a game to be shown to people before it has been released; as a sort of pay for demo. This allows player feedback to shape the game. Then it's exactly how gamers want it. Think Goldilocks and her porridge, it's just right. I think it also opens the development process of the game up to the public, as they can see exactly how the game takes shape, what features are harder to make (these will often be the features implemented last) or what features get taken out, if any (but hasn't happened as of yet).

The Name: Steam Early Access

Does the name of the program make you think you can have access to games early? Sure. But does it also tell you the game is still in development? Not so much.

I think Early Access says to someone "you can now have access to our game earlier than anyone else, and it will work". Which is not the case. Maybe a more fitting name would be, Steam Funding Access, or Steam Pre-Release Access. Ok, not those, but something which screams. This game is still being made, it will be broken, and/or unfinished. This is purely for funding the game and seeing the progress we make.

My Views

If the system is used well, like with DayZ, then great. On the DayZ Steam page, it says:

They are actively trying to stop you from buying their game unless you want to fund it, or are able to deal with game breaking issues. This is great, as it tells you exactly what to expect.

I hate Early Access when it's used to push out a bad, broken, or unfinished game, and claim it's like that because it's still in development. So I mostly hate the way some developers use the system. I really hate it when the terms Alpha, Beta, etc, are used as get out of jail free cards. I know the game is still being made, but as I can play it, it should work.

I like the idea behind Early Access, but dislike the way some use it.

Readers Your Money! Please?

Now as this article is in an unfinished state, I demand your money! Or you will never get the full article. What's that? This article is finished? Never mind then.

Please leave your mumblings, thoughts, musings, or fully constructed and formatted ideas in the comments bellow. It would be best if all of the above are to do with the article, but feel free to write about anything.

If you cannot complete your fully constructed ideas, please don't ask for money, that's just rude.

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Surviving The Survivor-Horror Epidemic: The Good, The Bad, And The Early https://www.gameskinny.com/a3bc7/surviving-the-survivor-horror-epidemic-the-good-the-bad-and-the-early https://www.gameskinny.com/a3bc7/surviving-the-survivor-horror-epidemic-the-good-the-bad-and-the-early Mon, 24 Feb 2014 14:43:39 -0500 Hobo With A Keyboard

A new wave of genre is currently taking the gaming world head on. In an effort to maximise realism and in turn immersion, new games with the ‘survival’ tag are fast-arising in 2014. And they don’t appear to be running for cover anytime soon. The question is: who do they appeal to? From a fair few efforts I have made on DayZ and Rust, I have come to the conclusion that these games aren’t for the time constrained. To have a proper gaming session on one of these titles, you need at least a couple of hours to get anything done.

I have already wasted many an hour lost in the virtual haze of post-apocalyptic disaster, desperately wandering to find food in a resource-strained environment. To accommodate for the mass online audience, a vast map also has to follow suit. So it is not uncommon to be dying of starvation (and boredom), seeking out nearby landmarks to coordinate some sense of orientation. But I have had some of my most enjoyable gaming moments to date on such titles. My heart has raced and sunk like nothing else in DayZ, diving into the thick treeline at the sound of a gunshot, or even the haunting approach of footsteps. You truly fear for your virtual life in games as scarily realistic as this.

I first played the DayZ mod around the time of August. I’d finally ticked off the “super PC” (mid-range I would later discover) from my bucket list that I desired for about 8 years. This game blew my mind. The foliage and the clouds swarming about my head looked so real. I felt like I was planting my own footsteps in these surroundings; searching for rations and any tool of self-defence, in this desolate post-apocalyptic wasteland. It’s a game about nothing, where everything feels at stake. Finding a medical kit and an apple, only to be shot dead by a BOLD FACED LIAR who promised he was a “friendly,” was and still is, both heart-breaking and embittering. The shrieks of incoming zombies pierce one’s heart, and pit you right into the location of this nightmare in Chernarus. Without getting too in-depth (as the game has now been realised by most who have seen a computer before), it involves you, the survivor, to….survive. What happens beyond that is a concoction of your imagination, and a fate formed by your own decisions - or lack thereof, as many a strangers’ bullet will dictate. Without hearing much of the surrounding hype, my initial fear and fascination was firmly invested into the zombies. But within the first hour, I discovered the true fear : other people. It is game mechanics in their most unadulterated form, effectively allowing the game to create itself on a blank canvas woven with paranoia and fear.

Rust is very much of a similar ilk, but crosses over into a Minecraft-esque territory. The graphics are relatively average, if not sub-par in places. Long grass and shadows are cataclysmically pixelated, and the night sky looks like the painted bedroom ceiling of a stargazing enthusiast. But that may also seem more so whilst comparing it to the generically associated title that is one of the most visually stunning games I’ve witnessed (DayZ).

Your means of survival are not so much dependant on finding items (aside from blueprints for ‘special’ items), but crafting them from raw materials. You find wood and stone to create a flint hatchet, to cut down more wood, and hunt animals to survive. You use wood to cook meat, and animal fats for lighter fuel to put into your newly built furnace, which in turn allows you to craft basic weaponry such as pistols and shotguns. You create a shed to stockpile resources, then with those resources build a house. It is not time-forgiving, and after about 8 hours I only just got around to finishing my 2 up 2 down detached in the countryside. Prior to this, I built numerous sheds across a mountainous landscape, creeping about my new habitat in the night, like an Al-Qaedan Quasimodo.

There seems to be a willingness from a larger majority of players to co-operate in comparison to DayZ. My first couple of hours saw me collate together a group of 5 strangers; one of whom was slain quite abruptly for his assault on a fellow member of the tribe. We encountered what appeared to be an obscenely large wooden design, that would put the Great Wall to shame. This moment was reminiscent to the end of Monty Python’s Holy Grail, as a gawky invisible American’s voice boomed across the landscape from his kingdom, and demanded that we leave the area. He mentioned the rent was steep, which I initially thought was an act of facetiousness. I realised that in fact rooms were being rented out to players in exchange for raw materials on a weekly basis. We eventually came to an agreement of 200 wood and 100 metal ore for the next couple of days. I continued my gaming session with these fine men, until the point where I realised it was past 5 in the morning..


Since that day, I haven’t roamed with any new-found allies. I found myself gathering resources in an out-of-the-way area, and have not been able to pinpoint my whereabouts. The last time I tried to escape my Deliverance-esque surroundings, I accidentally jumped off of a cliff in the dark. Rust’s main issue is that there is little surrounding you to ever really determine your true whereabouts. Everything looks the same. And, unlike DayZ, there are few permanent buildings to help navigate you around the vast map. But aside from that, it has so far been a very enjoyable experience.

The sandbox horror survival genre is now in full swing, and you can find a platitude of ‘early access’ games of a similar ilk by the bucket load on steam. But the problem lies therein: to contemplate the possibility of “Early Access” for a game, it needs to be justifiable. Titles such as NetherWasteland 2 (both of which I’ve heard positive things about) and 7 days to die (and more mixed feelings on the latter), are similarly categorised “post-apocalyptic” titles that are also part of the first-generation Early access Open World Survivor-Horror games(FGEAOWSHGs, obviously). And it is hard to differentiate between the genuinely dedicated and strong community-based FGEAOWSHGs titles, and those fronted by teams apparently lacking the patience to land a finished product before they turn a profit. This is a cynical statement, but I cannot help but feel that it is far more than mere coincidence that a slew of similiarly-paced titles are now invading our inner thoughts as adrenaline-hungry gamers.

Early Access

In my view, the concept of “Early Access” games is fair enough. For some it has been a great way to back a project and help it develop into a greater final product as a result of additional funding prior to its final release. Minecraft’s Markus Persson was able to leave his day job in order to focus more on the game as a result of alpha-game funding. Rust is devised by Garry of Garry’s Mod, so has a resume – albeit brief – to bear some credibility behind the project. DayZ certainly had valid reasons to open up to the public early. It notoriously has a devoted and long standing community that wishes to see the game develop and blossom into something greater than it has ever been. The mod has survived for years, but never truly been a finished product. And devoted fans want to see just that, whilst committing monetarily and being part of the development process. And it is at the consumer’s discretion to purchase an unfinished game, preferably without complaining non-constructively about all the alleged bugs in the title…. But the problem is, that is exactly what happens. Especially when you unleash an unfinished game upon a new or potential community.

7 Days To Die has a disconcertingly identical appearance to Minecraft’s mechanics and aesthetics. Throw in the erratically twitchy NPC models, and this title gives off the body language of a shifty back alley character seeking your wallet ; a motive to utilise “Early Access” in order to financially captivate an already live demographic of zombie/horror fanatics. It comes across as if the concept of this game was devised by some marketing heads, and set upon amateur coding drones to complete the job. And graphically to say the least, it would appear that way.

But the real tragedy is not necessarily people wasting their money on “fad” games designed to fleece the consumer. The real tragedy it would appear, is that such a conclusion that I have deduced can easily be surmised through speculation. With “Early Access,” a game can potentially dig its own burial spot, shoot itself in the head, and slump into its cold dirt-ridden grave before a final release is even announced; potentially cutting off its finished development. I went into this article believing that this game was of little worth because of what little information I could find through online forums and one or two articles.

But I realised that my bias shouldn’t get the better of me, and I wanted to like the ideas and concepts of this game. I did more YouTube “research” and found more positive outlooks from some regular YouTube video posters. But the availability of opinions on this unfinished game was so thin at the time of writing this. And I could not accept anything less than an unanimous approval from what little information I could gather regarding it. The developers of this game might genuinely be trying to create something new and innovative. But visually, the game just looks really haphazard. It looks as if Left 4 Dead took a bucketful of sulphuric acid to the face and keeled over into a mess of broken of glass. The graphics are more reminiscent of 2005′s mediocre Land of the Dead: Road to Fiddler’s Green than the survival horrors such as DayZ that it is attempting to compete with. But with its final release I really do hope to get a better idea of its worth, and hope to hear nothing but positivity - as the concept to me is genuinely intriguing.

The grey area that disallows for the possibility of consumers to make educated decisions upon purchasing a relatively unknown “Early Access” title such as 7 Days To Die (due to the lack of trusted reviewer sites or reliable games critics), is what could be so dangerous to new developers. And once they crash and burn on a non-fully released title, they won’t stand a chance in recuperating. To release a priced unfinished game that isn’t up to scratch and looks too bleak to redeem, is effectively getting caught with your pants down with piss all over your shins.

So I would say as a final word, that you must take heed when purchasing early access games. And developers, you should do when considering it as a viable concept to promote your creation. Your credibility is at stake if you try to push a half-baked product onto the mainstream gaming industry. And that industry is in a fantastic place now for independent game developers. There is a juxtaposition by which big companies such as EA and Activision are monopolizing the market with titles such as FIFA, Battlefield, and Call of Duty; but equally, outlets such as Xbox Arcade or Steam allow indie devs to put up their work for sale without the need to globally distribute physical copies. They can use the benefits of “Early Access” also, but the terms and conditions for both creator and consumer are finicky at the moment.

But, it is a new concept. If it does not get flooded with deception and crookedness, it could be another good thing to add to the indie developers’ toolkit. But up until now, the concept is too short-lived to give us any solid conclusion as to whether it is beneficial. Perhaps as an afterthought, developers/publishers could allow potential customers to try the alpha for perhaps one day, so that they can make a formidable decision as to whether they want to help support the future of the title in question. Just a thought. I never said it was a good one.

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DayZ Creator Dean Hall Leaves Bohemia https://www.gameskinny.com/cbrcr/dayz-creator-dean-hall-leaves-bohemia https://www.gameskinny.com/cbrcr/dayz-creator-dean-hall-leaves-bohemia Mon, 24 Feb 2014 04:24:34 -0500 Coatedpolecat

DayZ creator Dean Hall, has decided to leave Bohemia Interactive. Despite incredible sales, the creator has other plans for the future. In an exclusive interview with Eurogamer, Hall discloses his intentions with DayZ and where he's looking to make a home for himself.

Dean Hall created a mod called DayZ. This idea eventually turned into a full fledge survival-horror MMO. Bohemia is the studio that took on the task of fleshing out the idea along-side Dean Hall.

On December 16, 2013, DayZ - in its alpha stage - debuted on Steam Early Access. After the first 24 hours, selling 172,500 units, they earned $5 million. During peak sales, over 200 copies were purchased per minute. After one week over 400,000 copies got sold.

Though it may sound surprising someone would want to leave a project that's doing so well, Dean has this to say about himself:

"I am a grenade... I have a specific use. I'm really good at risk-taking and making other people take risks, I've always been good at that in my life. Like you say, maybe I've got the gift of the gab, so I can talk, I can explain something, I can talk people up to the ledge and get them to jump off it... But eventually, that's the bad person to have. Eventually, you don't want the guy telling you to go over the top and get through. So at some point I'll be a disaster for the project, at least in a leadership role."

Mr. Hall goes on to explain he is not abandoning the project, but expects he'll be done with it by the end of this year.

"I would extend my involvement here as long as Bohemia wanted - needed - me... Originally I wasn't going to do this year, but it would be stupid not to, and it would be unfair to the community. I have to be on the project as long as it's important to. Whether that role is as the leader, whether that role is in a more creative sense... But at a certain point there will be diminishing returns"

After he feels his work's done, Dean has a few ideas for similar games to DayZ, and wants to spend some time figuring those things out. According to Eurogamer he has three games written already and "A lot of them have similar DNA [to DayZ]."

"I guess most people would have not said anything... but I want to avoid a Notch-like situation so that everybody knows that one day - publishers as well - I'm going to come knocking. But it's not going to be under traditional terms, it's going to be different."

So what do you think? Is this a good idea, would you leave? Does this affect your purchasing decision for the full retail price? Can someone focus their efforts when wanting to develop other games and after giving a 10 month notice?

@Coatedpolecat

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Arma 3 Zeus DLC https://www.gameskinny.com/qgl3c/arma-3-zeus-dlc https://www.gameskinny.com/qgl3c/arma-3-zeus-dlc Sun, 16 Feb 2014 23:53:22 -0500 Pierre Fouquet

The Zeus DLC looks like the MMC mod, which simply allows one or more players to control, in real-time, the scenario. Along with players battling it out, playing the game. The Zeus player can do everything within a 3D editor, but there is a 2D editor for the quick and dirty edits.

And many trolls were made that day! Well that would be the case if there wasn't an area in which Zeus cannot place any units, but Zeus can place movement waypoints for the AI.

As you can see, you can set your own custom objectives on the fly. So, want to stop someone destroying your special tank, even though you told them to? Well, just cancel that objective, and make a new one, which would be to capture the tank.

Make your own stories, let players loose, and change the mission when it's too hard, or too easy.

Or if something is going wrong, make the objective fail and call a retreat.

This is why it's called Zeus; you get to rain down lighting strikes which will destroy anything they touch, if you have enough points.

Mega troll mode activate! Well, you can just use for atmosphere, please just use it for atmosphere!

Say bye-bye (see image above) to your evening. Bohemia Interactive did a livestream showing Zeus DLC gameplay, which during this they released on to the development build of the game.

See the exlivestream here.

What do you think of this type of DLC? Put your thoughts in the comments bellow.

Personally, I think it's great! As I have never been a dab-hand at using the 2D editor in Arma 3, and find 3D editors a lot easier, I hope this is still the case with Arma 3. I will be able to create scenarios, and make them nice and easy. Hey! I need to look good sometimes.

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Arma 3 Game Update 0.72: Lets Get Some Beta Action https://www.gameskinny.com/luucb/arma-3-game-update-072-lets-get-some-beta-action https://www.gameskinny.com/luucb/arma-3-game-update-072-lets-get-some-beta-action Fri, 19 Jul 2013 05:58:39 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

Spotrep #00007

Game Update 0.72

There are a massive amount of updates in this one, as is usual with betas. This decently sized ~885MB update for the Arma 3 Beta is going to be adding a lot of new content.

As there is so much content being added I will outline the main updates for the beta, as well as how that has been improved in this update.

So what is beta in the beta? (reusable jokes are...sorry)

Remember that one mission in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 called The Pit? Yes, it's that one, where you shoot targets, or even that mission in its predecessor Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, F.N.G, yep the one where you storm a ship, except made of cardboard... Well you can now do that in Arma, except it is a lot more complex, and involves weapon switching, and leaning, also longer distance shooting of moving and static targets, with prone and crouch added for extra difficulty. Well they have now added a few improvements to this.

  • "For lazy Mr. Endstar" there is now an automatic reload and resupply added upon restart of the mission.
  • Ability to quit after finishing the CoF (Course of Fire), meaning you can now quit when you finish that Firing Drill Challenge, you can just quit if you're a Mr/Mrs Perfect.
  • The last change I will talk about is the addition of an audio cue when you are going over the another medal, just so you know you are being Mr/Mrs Slow Coach.
Now some changes on other things:
  • Helicopters are now more agile.
  • Parachutes have been added to light helicopters, and all passengers in all helicopters can now eject and paradrop on those pesky enemy lines. Hopefully not Band of Brothers style (scattered over half of the place you are landing in).
  • Cargo parachutes for supports are here too!
Staying with the vehicle theme:
  • You now cannot go from the cargo/flatbed of a Truck to the cabin, meaning getting out and stopping running around and getting it, realism can be a pain sometimes, but I like this one.
  • Collision damage is tweaked for vehicles, they will now be more resistance especially at lower speeds.
  • Wheels of APCs have now be moved from a flying vehicle, to actually being on the road.
  • The Zamak's wheels destruction has been tweaked, changing the radius of those destroyed wheels.
For some weapons:
  • OPFOR Recon should have its guns back (GUNZZ I SAY!).
  • Katiba has it's variants back.
  • Aiming of the ACP-C2 has been adjusted, and it now uses .45 magazines.
  • Also with the ACP-C2, but also the Vermin, they now have sound suppressors, for their .45 ammo.

Right--I think that is all with that, otherwise this will go on too long.

Let's talk about Engine updates.
  • Steam friend invites! Woop. Wait...does that mean I can invite my friends, with less effort, happy times for Lazies, that's the second Lazies fix.
  • Wind synchronisation is now in MP.
  • The body damage system has been improved, well at least the detection part of it.
  • AI use Thermal Imaging when available, so stay frosty.
  • You can now get into vehicles which cannot move, so shooting from a techne with no engine will be a good tactile option, if there is only 2 enemies, who are not looking at you, and do not have any sort of explosive weapons.
  • No copying backpacks, when trying to place a vest or uniform in there.

To see all the updates, check out the source.

For buying the game on Steam, or directly from Bohemia, click on the respective name, and when the beta ends, you get access to the full game.

For any other information about the beta, click here.

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Take on Mars? What is it? When's it out? https://www.gameskinny.com/te2tq/take-on-mars-what-is-it-whens-it-out https://www.gameskinny.com/te2tq/take-on-mars-what-is-it-whens-it-out Thu, 18 Jul 2013 08:22:36 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

When do I get to play it?

Take on Mars will be on the Steam Early Access Program, and hold your horses--no really, hold on to them, blast off on August 1st.

So what is Take on Mars?

You take the role of a Rover Operator, allowing you to control fully simulated mobile Rovers and stationary Landers. In this you will work your way through the numerous Science Missions and will unlock the secrets of Mars along the way.

There are 3 main gameplay modes:

  • Space Program - Develop new technologies, vehicles and instruments to tackle the tasks ahead for the Science Agency.
  • Scenarios - Head straight to the surface of Mars and complete individual missions centered around various Science Missions and objectives.
  • Editor - Create scenarios or free-roam, your choice.

Sound like something out of this world to you? (Puns are puns-ey?)

The link to the Steam page is here.

The link to the official website is here.

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Bohemia Hacked, May Have Compromised User Information https://www.gameskinny.com/x2ecv/bohemia-hacked-may-have-compromised-user-information https://www.gameskinny.com/x2ecv/bohemia-hacked-may-have-compromised-user-information Fri, 12 Jul 2013 12:30:21 -0400 Cupcakecrisis

The developers behind Arma and Day Z have announced they were the victims of an “illegal attempt” to access personal usernames and information on their servers.  On July 11th hackers obtained “a database containing usernames, email addresses and encrypted passwords.”

 According to the security update on their interactive website...

“Please note due to the encryption of the passwords it is very unlikely that anything nefarious can be done with this information.”

Bohemia also ensures,

“No other information such as credit card details is stored by us and thus was not at any risk from this illegal breach.”

To take further precaution, the developers decided to reset all passwords on site--users cannot access any of their websites or forums until they create a new password.

No word yet on who is responsible party for the security breach.

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ARMA 3 Open Beta is Now Live https://www.gameskinny.com/dyxdi/arma-3-open-beta-is-now-live https://www.gameskinny.com/dyxdi/arma-3-open-beta-is-now-live Tue, 25 Jun 2013 16:22:19 -0400 Lui Galletto

Bohemia Interactive has opened the beta to their newest game ARMA 3. Downloads are readily available for $19.99 on their official website and on Steam.

The game is a followup to the insanely popular 2009 hit ARMA 2. The title has seen millions of downloads, both paid and free, and has spawned multiple mods, most famously DayZ.

ARMA 3 Beta will be bringing new features to players in the 20 km² island of Stratis to explore. Rugged terrain, expansive forests, and military bases will make their return as a staple of ARMA gameplay.

New types of aircraft, watercraft, trucks, and tanks will be available to play over the new terrain. You can also customize load outs and pick new gear and weapons as you approach conflict in different ways.

You can play through 8 brand new showcase missions on the Island or run through the competitive firing drills to hone your skills.

If you don't feel like playing alone, squad based gameplay will is back in full force and you can team up with friends and strangers 4 co-operative multiplayer scenarios.

The in game engine has been revamped, which means smoother animations, better graphics, clearer sound, and improved physics. The scenario editor is back so people can create new and bigger mods. With such an active community, it will not be surprising to see some incredible mods over the coming months.

The specs to run the game are not incredible, but they still require some power behind them: 

Minimal:Recommended:
 
OS: Windows Vista SP2/Windows 7 SP1 (Apple OS not supported) OS: Windows Vista SP2/Windows 7 SP1 (Apple OS not supported)
Processor: Intel Dual-Core 2.4 GHz/AMD Dual-Core Athlon 2.5 GHz 512MB Processor: Intel Core i5-2300/AMD Phenom II X4 940 1GB
Memory: 2 GB RAM Memory: 4 GB RAM
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 8800GT/ATI Radeon HD 3830/Intel HD Graphics 4000 Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 560/AMD Radeon HD 7750
Hard Drive: 15 GB free HDD space Hard Drive: 25 GB free HDD space
Audio: DirectX® compatible on-board Audio: DirectX® compatible soundcard

So, if you are interested, go sign up for the paid beta!

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E3 Reveal: Take On Mars https://www.gameskinny.com/wgswd/e3-reveal-take-on-mars https://www.gameskinny.com/wgswd/e3-reveal-take-on-mars Fri, 14 Jun 2013 15:13:46 -0400 Smoky Grey

At E3 this week I was nerd-freaking out when I saw the new Take On Mars title. Have you ever wanted to explore Mars? How about driving a rover on its surface? Now you can with this new simulator Take On Mars from Bohemia Interactive.

With Take On Mars you get to start off in the NASA control room with the ability to control the landing and driving of a rover on Mars. The landscape of Mars is based on real satellite data which is an amazing idea; even the time, gravity, and the rotation of the planet are scientifically accurate. All of the rovers and landers are based off of real life NASA vehicles, with real damage. Thankfully they decided to speed up all of the vehicles to triple speed, otherwise it would take us days to get anywhere on the surface of Mars.

Check out the trailer below, it looks amazing and any science nerds like me will love the idea of landing on and exploring the surface of mars.

Overall

The attention to detail is awesome, and the amount of gadgets and things to do will keep you exploring for hours. They have added and changed a few things from real life to make the game a little more accessible and fun for players, so don't expect everything to be perfectly accurate. For those of you who just want to explore there is a flying camera mode where you can zoom around and check out Mars. For those of you who love modding the developer said that the engine is very mod friendly even including an in-game editor and an included toolset.

No word yet on the release date, but out of all the titles for the PC at E3 this week Take On Mars has me the most excited.

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Bohemia Interactive Announces ArmA 3 Alpha https://www.gameskinny.com/9b0sy/bohemia-interactive-announces-arma-3-alpha https://www.gameskinny.com/9b0sy/bohemia-interactive-announces-arma-3-alpha Wed, 27 Feb 2013 08:24:12 -0500 Imayen Etim

Bohemia Interactive announced that their upcoming PC shooter, ArmA 3, will enter alpha testing March 5th. 

To gain access, hit up Steam and pre-order any edition of the game. 

The basic Alpha edition runs $32.99 and features access to the alpha run and a copy of the game when the final version is released.

The $49.99 Digital Deluxe features a digital soundtrack, map, tactical guide, and ArmA: Cold War Assault.

The $91.99 Supporter Edition nabs you all of the above, ArmA X, all upcoming DLC for ArmA 3, forum perks, and the chance to have your name in the game credits. 

Co-Creative Director Jay Crowe expressed optimism that the alpha test would lead to a better final product:

The Arma 3 Alpha is a big milestone in the project's development. Testing early and often puts us on the right track towards improving performance, stability and delivering on our goal of creating a robust final release. It's also a big opportunity to get the game in the hands of our passionate community, which enables them to start work on their own creations, tailored to the fourth generation of the Real Virtuality engine.

Not quite ready to drop cash on the game? Hopefully you have a friend that did. Those who purchased the game can invite a friend to take part in Alpha Lite, which runs from March 14 until June 15. Don't know anyone who picked it up? No worries. The ArmA folks will be randomly distributing invites through their social media channels. Alpha Lite won't have the same functionality as the standard Alpha trial -- multiplayer and modding aren't included in the deal.

With the absolutely bizarre setback Bohemia encountered in developing the title, it's great to see them moving right along.

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ARMA 3 Changes Location Name To Avoid... Unpleasantness https://www.gameskinny.com/ogd9g/arma-3-changes-location-name-to-avoid-unpleasantness https://www.gameskinny.com/ogd9g/arma-3-changes-location-name-to-avoid-unpleasantness Sat, 02 Feb 2013 05:14:25 -0500 Wokendreamer

ARMA 3 has decided to take a hint from real-life experience.  The game has been set to take place on the fictional island of Limnos, a Mediterranean island that seems rather obviously based on the actual island of Lemnos, one of the islands of Greece.

The change is not surprising.  Two of ARMA 3's developers were detained while on vacation in Greece on espionage charges for months, only having been released on bail this January.  According the the Greek government, the two were taking photographs of military areas that they considered sensitive.  While the two devs, Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar, both insist that they were taking only standard tourist-style photos, the case remains open despite their bail.

The new name for the fictional setting will be Altis, a name the developer notes still holds the Mediterranean feel while being different enough to disarm potential complications to the ongoing espionage case or further accusations of more such activity.

Bohemia Interactive hopes the name change will help firmly establish that the setting is different while keeping the feel of ARMA 3 intact.

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ArmA 3 Devs Buchta and Pezlar Released on Bail https://www.gameskinny.com/g2yqe/arma-3-devs-buchta-and-pezlar-released-on-bail https://www.gameskinny.com/g2yqe/arma-3-devs-buchta-and-pezlar-released-on-bail Tue, 15 Jan 2013 11:27:50 -0500 Ashley Shankle

Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar are finally heading home after spending over 120 days in Greek jail. The two have been released on €5000 bail for each man, and they will be spending their time free back in the Czech Republic.

Buchta and Pezlar work for Bohemia Interactive, the development team behind the upcoming ArmA 3. The duo were arrested late last year on charges of espionage in Greece, after allegedly taking photos of military property during a vacation.

HelpIvanMartin.org has been keeping track of the developments in their jail time and trial -- which still has no set date as judges are still on strike in Greece. Pezlar and Buchta will be spending their time back home until their court date is finally made official.

The pair have spent more time in jail than anyone had anticipated. Were the Greek judicial system not in a time of unrest, they likely could have been tried more than two months ago.

Hopefully we will get some news from Martin Pezlar and Ivan Buchta themselves after they've spent some quality time with the families they have not seen in months.

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HelpIvanMartin.org Creates CG Movie About Case https://www.gameskinny.com/0nsni/helpivanmartin-org-creates-cg-movie-about-case https://www.gameskinny.com/0nsni/helpivanmartin-org-creates-cg-movie-about-case Thu, 13 Dec 2012 15:18:09 -0500 Ashley Shankle

Bohemia Interactive's Martin Pezlar and Ivan Buchta have been in Greek jail for 95 days now. HelpIvanMartin.org, a site dedicated to raising awareness about the situation, has produced a 15 minute long CG film covering what we know about the situation.

Pezlar and Buchta are currently awaiting their second appeal, which is believed to be processed sometime next month.

In the meantime, the concerned folks over at HelpIvanMartin.org have created a film that covers what happened and asks for support from viewers.

While I do support the efforts of the site and hope that the duo are released back to their home country of the Czech Republic soon, I can't help but find the video a bit amusing. It's very dramatic, to say the least.

As dramatic (and kind of humorous) as the video might be, the situation is still very serious.

There are plenty of people not only supporting the cause, but also actively attempting to help the two be released back to their home country. 95 days is a long time to be in jail in an unfamiliar country. It's hard to imagine what it feels like to be in the shoes of Martin Pezlar and Ivan Buchta right now.

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Jailed ArmA 3 Devs Write Letter to Supporters https://www.gameskinny.com/gcv9c/jailed-arma-3-devs-write-letter-to-supporters https://www.gameskinny.com/gcv9c/jailed-arma-3-devs-write-letter-to-supporters Thu, 29 Nov 2012 14:22:34 -0500 Ashley Shankle

Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar have been in Greek jail for 81 days. In response to the support of fans, friends, and family the duo has written a letter to HelpIvanMartin.org to say thank you for helping them stay optimistic.

The handwritten letter has been scanned and can be seen on the front page of HelpIvanMartin.org. Dated November 22, it reads:

"Dear Friends,

We would like to thank you for the ongoing support of our case. After tiring two months, it is important for us to hear ( well, read) words of encouragement and to learn that we are not forgotten.

We are treated well, but we feel we should rather be with our families than here.Your effort makes it easier to handle: We enjoy the postcards, community news, pictures and puzzles which are being regularly send by this website’s magnificent staff, It seem sit will take some time before we could return home and there is certainly much to overcome.

We do our best to stay optimistic and use this time well : we read we walk, we chat and discuss and martin even does some pt. we’ve already walked hundred of kilometers, read thousands of pages, but our thoughts are always with our families, friends and people who help us in any way.

We should also thank everyone who joined the petition! 14.000 signatures is truly amazing number, which makes us hope for the best regardless of the hardships.

With best regards, from windy Greece,

Ivan & Martin"


It could be some time until Martin Pezlar and Ivan Buchta can return to their home country of the Czech Republic. They are seeking aid from the Czech president to make their way home.

Keep updated on what's going with the case at HelpIvanMartin.org.

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