Okay folks…

The address change has been completed. If you click a link to any posts made before this one, be sure to add “uk” to the end of “gamedup” to see its new address, as there are no longer any blog posts on the blog that is linked to, as they have all been moved over to here.

There may be other addresses that are updated in the future as well, though to my knowledge, this was the only one that needed updating, unless Twitch does as well, which would be a bit more difficult to accomplish.

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Changes… they’re coming!

This post is from the Geeked Up & Network blog, and should be read by everyone.

Geeked Up & Network

Okay folks, this is just an update to say that I’ll be starting to merge a few Geeked Up related presences online, most notably YouTube channels, as I’ve determined that it would be safe to merge some of the more complementary ones together. As of yet, I’m not quite sure what that will entail, but I will say that Gamed Up will remain in its current state, and will not be subject to any merging, seeing as it has a big enough amount of topics to cover. However, I will be looking to revert it to simply “Gamed Up” on all social media presences, along with keeping the consistent “gamedupuk” address, of which at this present time, only the WordPress blog is out of step with, though that will be changed this week, with minimal disruption.

As far as things go, the eligible merges I’m looking at doing are “Hardware…

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Starcraft for Free! (Latest Update)

Over the past few days, it was reported on many outlets that Starcraft would be made available as a free download as of the 30th of March; it also was accompanied by a free patch, version 1.18 which implements some fixes, such as better compatibility with more recent versions of Windows, and also an update to an OpenGL backend, amongst other things. However, as of 3 hours ago, they have decided to push back the release of the patch (and I assume the the proper release of the full game) by at least a week. You are still able to download the Public Testing Realm (PTR) release (which was being used to test the patch), which they’re allowing to remain free.

You can download the 1.18 PTR release (and view all the changes) via this link. Keep in mind that you will require a PTR account to play the game online, but the single player campaigns remain playable offline. If you don’t already have a Battlenet account (you have one if you play WoW), I highly recommend that you get one, because you will also be able to pick up three free games via Blizzard Classics. The games are Blackthorne (Win & Mac), The Lost Vikings (Win), and Rock & Roll Racing (Win). You’ll also be able to register the keys for all of your Blizzard games with them and get downloadable versions of them as well.

Other than that, there’s not a lot else to say, other than there being a Mac release coming out eventually too (which is why there’s a tag for Mac), though I have no idea when that will be released. Coincidentally, I haven’t tested it as of yet, but you may be able to use the data from the PTR release in the Stargus source port, which enables you to play it on any OS it supports, including Linux, and of course Windows, and Mac. Even if you can’t for some reason, then Stargus will accept data from your original Starcraft CD.

In any case, with the Starcraft Remaster coming out in the winter sometime, now is a good time to get back into Starcraft, or even if it a go to see what the fuss was all about! I’ll roll out another update when I learn more about what’s going on with version 1.18, and also the free release version of the game.

Catch you later, and happy gaming!

~Andy

New Section Announcement

Partly inspired by someone I was talking to on Twitter (@StormkeeperGU), I have now come up with a new section of Gamed Up, to complement the State of Play (SoP) section (which itself has yet to be properly commissioned), in discussing some of the more “serious” gaming topics; where SoP discusses gaming culture, politics, and related stuff, this new section will tackle the topic of ludology, which is the discipline of studying games, and playing in general.
 
The name of this new section? Ludological.
 
It, like SoP will have separate blogs on the Gamed Up site, which should be coming within the next couple of months, or at least the skeleton of it will be. In some respects, this will allow me to go back to more academic writing with regards to computer and video games, as well as games, and play in general, but it won’t be a solo effort. In time, I hope to have additional contributors to both blogs, but for now, both blogs will remain dormant, though they will start having a proper presence soon enough.
 
Additionally, given this post will be indexed by Google at some point, it makes sense to mention things by name, so I can have a clear timeline as to when I first mentioned it.
 
In any case, watch this space for developments, as I hope to soon set out at least the framework for Gamed Up, and deploying the relevant blogs off the domain proper, even if it may be a bit longer before content is written.
 
Also, if you have any suggestions for the site, or even anything for Geeked Up in general, I’d be interested in hearing it.
 
~Andy

Origin is still offering Mass Effect 2 for free…

…via ‘On the House’, if you want to pick it up.

It’s available here.

Arguably one of the best RPGs in recent years, it’s well worth picking up, especially at the current price of nothing! If you have yet to get into the series, it’s worth getting the game now, so you have it for when you’re in a position to get the first game (either free, or when it goes on sale), seeing as you already saved money by not having to get the second. Otherwise, you could start with it, although the story may not make as much sense.

If you want to see a bit of what the game is about, here’s a trailer:

~Andy

Basilisk Games is giving away Eschalon Book I for free…

…in order to celebrate it’s 10th anniversary of release!

You can get it free via GOG, although as they state, the Steam version is currently experiencing issues getting the discount, so you’ll need to wait a day or so before trying to get it from there.

Book II & Book III are also discounted as part of this celebration. The games are available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS.

If you want to see what the game looks like, check this video out (It’s an Action-RPG, kinda like Diablo, Torchlight, or Nox):

 

Credit goes to Gaming on Linux for the initial article covering this topic.

~Andy

New Humble Bundle: Bandai Namco Entertainment 2

Humble has a new bundle out as of a couple of hours ago. Check out the link below to see what games they have in the bundle! I’ll try to add a list in ASAP.

https://www.humblebundle.com/bandai-namco-bundle

Also, don’t forget that you can get a freebie and another good deal from Humble, as indicated in this previous post.

Two freebies and a great deal!

Okay folks, this is literally a bit of a fastball, as both freebies are due to be over tomorrow; you have an additional day to claim the deal below, and be sure to click through my referral link if you take advantage of it, as it supports my efforts!

First of all, the classic turn-based strategy game (and first game of the X-Com/XCOM series) X-Com: UFO Defense is available on the Humble Store for free! Simply go to this link, and add it to your cart, then check out! Be sure to claim by 17:00 hours tomorrow, or you will be unable to claim this offer. The code itself expires after than on the 15th of Feb, but again you must redeem it by tomorrow!

Additionally, if you’re a big fan of the X-Com/XCOM games, you can get XCOM 2 for the low price of $12 (or your regional equivalent) though Humble Monthly! If you redeemed the game above for free, you also get a 10% code off your first subscription, lowering the game cost to $10.80! If you want to support my efforts, you can subscribe via my referral link so I can purchase more games to review/LP. Please note that you only have till the 3rd of February to take advantage of this deal.

I will soon put up a dedicated Gamed Up Humble account to facilitate referrals on behalf of the site, but for the first time, I’ll be grabbing a few referrals through the link on this page. I will add however that I’ll be adding my personal referral links to my accounts, but otherwise referral links here can only be global Gamed Up links, which benefit the entire team in one way or another.

As for the second freebie… you can get the business building game Constructor free from GOG. If the link does not quite the price of the game free, then you can redeem it via code here. Again, this expires tomorrow, so be sure to pick it up ASAP!

I unfortunately haven’t got an affiliate link to GOG at this time, but I’ll be working on that ASAP too, plus anything else that is relevant. I will start trying to update this blog more often, when we properly launch in April (giving me time to stagger out my Stormkeeper at Geeked Up launch stuff, as well as letting other people on the team launch), when I hopefully have some other people available to write up posts, but for now you have only me.

Anyway, that’s it for this deal & freebie post. If you decide to get XCOM 2, let me know, as maybe we could play a game together at some point!

For now though, happy gaming.

~Andy (Stormkeeper)

Black Friday Weekend Deals & Freebies

Okay folks, as well as being a test of the Facebook page integration with this blog, this is also going to be a pretty big post detailing all the deals and freebies I’ve found today. Unless otherwise stated, the deals here will end on the 29th of November, which should give you plenty of time to nab them!

First of all, I’m currently having major issues with the Gamed Up Store on GamesRepublic, so I won’t be linking the deals until around Xmas. Secondly, you can pick up the Dragon Trainer DLC for Forge of Gods free from Giveaway of the Day! You can also get the Project Argo prototype for free from Bohemia Interactive’s store.

Steam currently has their Autumn Sale, so it’s worth going over there to check out what games are on sale; Civilization V Complete is going pretty cheap now at least.

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Plans for the upcoming week on Gamed Up

Over the weekend, two videos shall be recorded for Gamed Up, but uploaded both to Gamed Up’s YouTube channel, but also my channel, “Played Up By Stormkeeper”; the nature of these videos are essentially “first impressions” of two indie game games in development, though we have two stages of doing so, depending on where the game is, with a third for a detailed and for the most part, final verdict on the game.

These series are called “Early Play Indie”, “Quick Play Indie”, and “Further Play Indie”; the objectives of the first two are similar, except the former of the two is for games in a pre-release state, and the latter is for games that have just been released, or are about to be released (within 7 days). The last one of the three is essentially a definitive look at the game, a couple of months after its official release date (after leaving Early Access or its pre-release state), long enough for the hype, and the majority of teething problems with the game to die down, in order to have a proper look at the game, and review it within the context of the previous viewings of the game.

This ultimately means that although “Further Play Indie” is indeed a review, it isn’t like a conventional review, mainly because we got a copy of the game relatively early, directly from the developer, so we have to apply different criteria as we would a standard review. For the time being, these series are only available for indie games, although there may be provision for doing them with bigger budget games in the future, although for now, they’re ultimately restricted to the (admittedly less interesting sounding) “previews” and “reviews”, the latter of which will also be used for games we’re retrospectively reviewing, or games we pretty much just got without any context; you see now why there’s a different procedure .

The reasoning for the “Play Indie” series is that with the advent of Early Access, certain developers – primarily indie ones – release their game to people earlier than usual through Steam’s Early Access programme, Kickstarter, or do something similar through other ways. The majority of the time, we advise against buying into Early Access games or Kickstarters, mainly because in the past, people have been burned by buying into them, and I’m sure some examples come to mind right now; this can affect any developer to, be they indie, or in some cases, established. In very rare instances, it might be okay to buy-in to the early access methods if you either have total faith in the developer, or you love the series they’re working on.

However, as the Romans said “Caveat emptor” (let the buyer beware); we will never personally recommend that anyone purchase a game whilst it’s in early access, even if we do sing its praises; if you do decide to take the plunge, make sure that you can afford to lose the money if things go wrong (not that I’m suggesting they will, but just in case) because thw worst that could happen is that you don’t get your money back! Of course, once it reaches the “Quick Play” stage, we’ll be more informed about what the game is like upon release, along with its improvements leading up to release. We’re also able to be a bit more open about if we think it’s a good buy at the time of release, or if we think that it’s one to watch, but needs a little more time before it’s worth shelling out for.

Penultimately, there is also “Steam Greenlight”; I haven’t mentioned this until now because it doesn’t currently fit into the structure above, although I might look at doing a “Greenlight Picks” show every week to highlight interesting Greenlight titles, but first things first, I need a system for “Play Indie” first, so watch out for that in the future!

The 2 games I’ll be looking at during the week will be “Massive” under Early Play Indie – which is long overdue to be looked at – currently in Early Access, and “Ballistic Tanks”, which is due to be released on the 20th of this month, so will be looked at under Quick Play Indie. I’ll try to have both videos out over the weekend; be sure to watch out for my Let’s Play videos on my “Played Up by Stormkeeper” channel coming up on Wednesday and Friday, and check out the two Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth videos I uploaded on Monday, with updates occurring at 8pm UK time on each of those days… which is in addition to the “Indie Plays” episodes being uploaded to there and the main Gamed Up channel.

Apologies for the length of this, but I figured I’d better mention what’s happening this week, and how we’re (currently just I) going to be doing stuff, and the criteria we use, although I’m still learning what needs to be done, so the format is still being finalised… hopefully as time goes on, things will develop and become more consistent overall.

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