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Xbox Games With Gold gets Assassin's Creed Chronicles: Russia and Smite in June

Microsoft’s announced the Xbox Games With Gold lineup for June.Climax Studios’ Xbox One side-scrolling platformer spin-off Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: Russia is free to download during the entire month. A nod to the World Cup?Xbox One owners can download Smite: Gold Bundle from 16th June to 15th July.Read more…

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You can get up to 20% off a batch of 4K TVs this week

If you’ve been fighting off the ever-increasing urge to buy yourself a 4K television to go with all of these shiny new video games, now might be a good time to finally pull the trigger, as eBay is offering 20 per cent off a variety of brand new 4K sets using a voucher.The offer, which is live right now and finishes on Friday, 1st June, will take 20 per cent off a variety of 4K TVs from LG, Samsung, Sony, Hisense, Panasonic and more when you enter the code PROMO20 at checkout. It also includes a range of TV recorders,…

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Yoku's Island Express review – a pinball/platforming hybrid that works brilliantly well

You could probably build a fairly tedious argument around the premise that video games have two key parental figures. There’s pen-and-paper RPGs on one side, with all the stats, the loot, the character sheets and the narrative choices. And then there’s pinball on the other, a sticky bar-room game that favours reaction-time and dexterity and intricate layout design, that rewards you – and draws you in – with glorious sounds and lights. Pen-and-paper RPGs gave us Baldur’s Gate and Deus Ex; pinball gave us Mario and GTA (the original GTA actually started out as an explicit riff on pinball, I…

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Moonlighter Review

Yes, I know, I’m selling sticks, but these sticks fell off of something that nearly killed me in a deep, dark dungeon just a few minutes ago. I risked my hide for that limestone over there, too. This particular starter cable is most certainly a priceless relic, and if you want me to get more treasure like it, you’re going to have to pay the price I’ve set for it. Or at least a price we can agree on. In Moonlighter, your RPG hero’s inventory, perpetually overstuffed with all the things you’re absolutely sure you’re going to need one day,…

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This week's best deals: Xbox One X bundles, Splatoon amiibo, NES Classic and more

Look, Dark Souls Remastered, Detroit: Become Human, State of Decay 2 and an actual video game about remodelling and selling houses are all out this week, so we should probably cut to the chase and get right to this week’s big batch of gaming deals so that we can all do what we need to do, buy what we need to buy and get right back to slogging through whichever particular game is your personal poison.As usual, we’ve got deals that’ll work in the UK, deals that’ll work in the US and some deals that will work in both the…

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Samsung adds FreeSync support to select 4K TVs

Samsung has issued firmware updates that add FreeSync over HDMI support to a number of its 4K TVs. FreeSync is a variable refresh rate technology that allows for smoother, tear-free gaming from AMD Radeon graphics cards, with a slightly different implementation available on Xbox One, One S and One X. Engadget reports that US models Q6FN, Q7FN, Q8FN and Q9FN QLED models get the upgrade along with the NU8000 (we’re contacting Samsung to find out which EU/UK equivalents are supported – the firm’s model names change according to region). It’s a great move for living room gaming, bringing a highly…

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Why small choices matter when it comes to character creation in RPGs

Narrative RPGs are arguably all about choices and your power over choices. Choosing a class and a background lays the groundwork for the whole experience of a game and provides a springboard for roleplaying. In the first Mass Effect, for example, you’re given two key choices at the beginning of the game that effectively select which version of Commander Shepard you want to inhabit. You decide the personal history and the psychology of Shepard. You decide whether they grew up as the nomadic child of navy officers or on the streets, and whether they matured into a scarred survivor, renowned…

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State of Decay 2: Xbox One X looks better than S – but frame-rate is lower

Exclusive to Xbox One and PC, State of Decay 2 blends four-player online co-op with a well-worn zombie apocalypse setting – and the concept is sound. Survival is the name of the game: you explore a seamless, open area for weapons and items, claim safehouses, and scout new spots for your community of survivors to migrate to. It expands on the original’s ideas, but the technology behind it gets a full reset this time. Built on Unreal Engine 4, State of Decay 2 abandons the CryEngine 3.1 of the original game – perhaps partially explaining the five-year development time. It’s…

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Microtransactions, battle royale and Wake Island – the Battlefield V interview

Well, who would have thought it. There’s a new Battlefield game coming out this year, and it uses World War 2 as a backdrop for DICE’s chaotic multiplayer sandbox, while also folding in features such as a new co-op mode and character customisation – both of which were the focus point for the reveal trailer – and doing away with the series’ long-standing premium pass. Shortly after yesterday’s reveal event, I got the chance to sit down briefly with DICE’s creative director Lars Gustavsson, a long-standing member of the team and part of the franchise since its very beginning, to…

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