Star Citizen stands as one of the most anticipated PC games in recent years. Space-flight simulation has been a part of PC gaming since its very beginnings, but we've scaled-up quite a bit from Galaga to now. In our very first interview with Chris Roberts, CEO & Chairman of Star Citizen's Cloud Imperium Games, we discussed the tremendous focus on graphics and technology for the game. Roberts told us that he wanted something to enjoy on his maxed-out, expensive gaming PC -- something that could make use of SLI and an X-series CPU.

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After months of WIP screenshots and concept art, we're finally starting to see a few game items receive high-fidelity polish.

Parlay, Please: Pixel Piracy - a Poo-Review

By
in Games
Published May 30, 2014 at 9:00 am

It is always great when given the opportunity to check out a game before release and see what developers are bringing to the table. Recently, I was given this opportunity with Pixel Piracy by Quadro Delta. I thoroughly enjoy retro pixel games, but man, was I in for a treat with this. Pixels AND pirates -- I couldn't wait.

pixel-piracy-3A custom ship build from the Steam Community page.

Now, keep in mind the game is in Alpha, and as such there are many things subject to change. But after playing this game for several weeks, I have pulled one thing away from it: this game is about crap.

Now, you might be thinking, "hey, that seems pretty harsh." Please let me explain.

Intel entered the SSD market in late 2008 with the X25 and has continued to release quality SSDs such as the most recent Intel 530 series. Intel is set to release their newest SSDs at Computex on June 4th. As I mentioned in my Z97 motherboard roundup, SATA III has become a bottleneck for SSDs; due to this bottleneck, interfaces like M.2, SATA express (otherwise called SATAe), and PCI-e are being implemented specifically for high-performance SSDs. Intel’s newest SSDs will be using NVM express (NVMe), a specification for SSDs attached through the PCIe bus. NVMe will allow for much higher queue depth, lower latency, and a host of other improvements that could considerably increase performance.

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Next Wednesday--June 4th at 2AM--Intel has an announcement from its Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group. This is the same time as Intel's Computex keynote, so in my opinion, it’s very likely that this will be Intel’s next big SSD announcement. It has already been spoiled that Intel will bring NVMe-based drives to that field this year, and Computex would be just the event to launch them.

Bethesda announced ‘Battlecry’ yesterday, its upcoming free-to-play melee action game. Battlecry is being developed by the studio of the same name for PC and supports up to 32-player matches.

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Battlecry pits up to 16 players against one another on each side for bloody multiplayer combat featuring swords, axes, laser crossbows, and hand-to-hand combat. It mixes a few themes and art styles to form a unique blend of medieval, post-apocalyptic, B-movie, and more historically-based visuals.

We've put together a quick FPS performance optimization & screenshot settings guide for Watch Dogs, using configuration file tweaking to improve framerate. Our previous article/video guide for Watch Dogs covers removal of mouse acceleration and smoothing, and before that, we benchmarked Watch Dogs' performance on PCs, calling it 'horribly optimized.'

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Here's the video tutorial for tweaking the Watch Dogs GamerProfile.xml file:

Update: Our very critical review of Watch Dogs is now online here.

Just a few hours after publishing a quick warning that the dog-fighting "Arena Commander" module would be available today, the team at Roberts Space Industries have delayed v0.8 alpha once again.

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The delay comes in the face of two high-severity, game-breaking issues. In a statement, Chris Roberts justified the delay by pointing-out the lack of publisher pressure:

"It would be foolish to release an unstable build, even if pre-alpha for the sake of meeting an internal deadline. This is the power of the crowdfunding that made Star Citizen possible: a publisher would make us ship tomorrow regardless of the current build quality… but as you are all focused on quality rather than a financial return for shareholders we are able to take a few more days to deliver something that is stable."

Snow White only had to take one bite of an apple to fall under a life-altering spell. Likewise, Telltale Games has been offering its rollercoaster of an adventure series in potent, twisting episodic bites. Telltale’s most recent episode, “In Sheep’s Clothing,” is the smallest bite in size, but it might be the juiciest in the series thus far.

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This The Wolf Among Us, Episode 4 - In Sheep's Clothing review & gameplay discussion will pick up from where we last left off. You can find our reviews of the previous three episodes here:

It's been known for a few days that Star Citizen's "Arena Commander" space-flight combat simulation module will be playable on May 29. We first reported on this module from the floor of PAX East, where we interviewed Chris Roberts post-unveil, then again about FPS mechanics, and one more time about Arena Commander.

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Star Citizen's Arena Commander module is described in our post here. In short, it is a 'simulation' (within canon) of space-flight combat that is being released primarily for testing purposes. It is important to realize that this is very early alpha (0.8) and will be buggy and broken; the onus is on gamers to report issues they discover. This alpha test will help determine maximum player count, stress test server / back-end stability, and get us some hands-on with the shooting mechanics.

Despite rumors by some media outlets that the Titan Z had been 'canceled,' our recent discussion with nVidia proved that the card's release was still on-target for 2Q14. We first spotted the Titan Z at nVidia's GPU Technology Conference (GTC), hosted annually in San Jose. The specs have remained the same: It's a dual-GPU video card hosting 2xGK110 Kepler GPUs, 5760 CUDA cores in total, and emphasizing 8TFLOPS of raw COMPUTE power. The Titan Z houses two banks of 7Gbps 6GB GDDR5, meaning each GPU will have access to 6GB of RAM on-card. MSRP was set as $3000 when first announced.

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It wouldn't be a launch party without an accompanying round of 'crash fixes.' After the Titanfall crash fix guide, Skyrim launch, and Mass Effect 3 launch, it's become apparent that no AAA title ships without numerous, game-breaking defects. The same is true for Watch Dogs.

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We've already published a benchmark of the game's performance on numerous video cards -- highlighting its sub-par optimization issues -- and a mouse acceleration fix. Still, even with this behind us, tearing, stuttering, crashing / CTDs, freezing, and black screen / flickering issues run rampant in Watch Dogs.

Let's start with graphics issues that are easily resolved.

Update: We have an FPS optimization guide online now! Once you've got your crashes resolved, check out our FPS performance optimization guide + video.

Update: Our very critical review of Watch Dogs is now online here.

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