This week in games: Overwatch gets a server browser, Project Cars 2 targets 12K and more

Project Cars 2

More Kickstarter news this week. Can you believe it? Last week I joked about a renaissance but now I’m pretty sure it’s actually happening.

That, plus Overwatch gets a server browser, South Park delays a second time, a bevy of launch trailers and announcement trailers and trailer trailers, and Project Cars 2 talks about supporting 12K resolutions. Mmmm, that’s a lot of pixels.

This is gaming news for February 6 through 10.

St2sis

Another chance for me to talk about Stasis? Excellent. If you don’t know, Stasis is the best horror game you (probably) didn’t play in 2015. An isometric horror game in the vein of the classic Sanitarium, Stasis is some excellent derelict space ship sci-fi.

And now the developers are working on a follow-up, titled Beautiful Desolation. Like PC Gamer, I apparently missed word on this in January, but there’s a Kickstarter campaign and everything. I’m not a huge fan of the name, but I am a huge fan of the art on display so far, and fervently hope it reaches its funding goal.

Tormented Bards

Let’s keep on the crowdfunding theme for a second and talk about inXile. The studio released details on both the upcomingTorment: Tides of Numenera and the slightly-less-upcoming Bard’s Tale IV this week, with a look at Torment’s story and Bard’s Tale’s combat. Here’s Torment:

And Bard’s Tale:

Finish the fight

Halo Wars 2 launches next week, at least for Ultimate Edition buyers. Will it be good? No idea, but it sure does have some beautiful cinematics.

Live to serve

It’s not the sexiest update, but Overwatch is getting a server browser to complement its bevy of matchmaking systems. Want to play a custom game with friends? You can finally—nine months after release—do so.

Project C2RS

I’d sort-of forgotten that Slightly Mad Studios has been working on Project Cars 2. Hard to forget, given the stink people made when the sequel was originally announced, coming as it did mere months after the release of the original. But regardless, I’d forgotten.

There’s video now though—gorgeous video. Also, support for 12K resolutions (12K!) and more. Time to upgrade your graphics card, sim racers.

More-za

Speaking of racing games…well, actually no. The big news this week is that Playground Games, developer of the beloved Forza Horizon series, is working on a new game—and it’s not a racing game. According to GamesIndustry.biz , Playground is opening a second studio and branching out into a new genre, in addition to (presumably) the 2018 Forza Horizon game.

If this mythical second project ends up even half as good as Forza Horizon, we’re in for a treat.

South Park: Still Not Whole

Bad news, South Park fans: Latest game The Fractured But Whole has been delayed yet again, this time to a rather ambiguous “sometime this year.” That’s the second delay for the superhero-themed sequel, which was originally supposed to arrive in December and then was pushed to early 2017. Now? Well, we’ll see.

Cue the Miyamoto quote about a bad game being bad forever, and et cetera.

Siege lifted

Ubisoft’s doing just okay with-or-without South Park though, I imagine. Case in point: Rainbow Six Siege is still humming along, still 2015’s best shooter, and just about to start its second season of DLC characters and maps. You’ll get four minutes of that below, with a look at the new “Velvet Shell” operators and Coastline map.

Oh, and Ubisoft also brought back the Rainbow Six Siege Starter Edition. For $15 you get the game and access to four operators, with a whole lot of grinding if you want to unlock the rest—or you try it, enjoy it, and buy the full game (maybe when it goes on sale?) to continue as normal. Your call.

Wild

Okay, more Ubisoft news. Ghost Recon: Wildlands is set to release in March. Ubisoft’s continued its tradition of “Silly Live-Action Trailers” for this one—except this time they’ve made a whole live-action movie. There’s a teaser below. Go microwave some popcorn. I’ll wait.

source”cnbc”

5 more Firefox add-ons that boost browser productivity

mozilla firefox primary

As we’ve mentioned previously, Firefox’s vast library of add-ons makes it easy to build the browser into a productivity juggernaut. We uncovered a few more must-have customizations for improving your online workflow.

Start HQ

The Firefox start tab isn’t exactly motivating; in fact, you’re more likely to be seduced by the search bar into wasting time than starting on the day’s tasks. This add-on kickstarts your productivity by making your essential sites and services the first thing you see when you boot up your browser.

starthq

StartHQ

StartHQ turns turns the Firefox start page into a productivity dashboard.

StartHQ assembles all your commonly used web apps, social networks, and other cloud services into a kind of productivity dashboard. Hovering over an app’s icon reveals “deep links” to its often-used functions. You can group similar apps together on multiple screens as you would on a mobile device, and even search across most popular cloud service right within the tab.

Rescue Time

If at the end of the day you’re staring at a full to-do list wondering where the time went, you need this add-on.

rescue time

Rescue Time

Get a picture of your productivity with the Rescue Time add-on.

Rescue Time tracks the time you spend online and gives you detailed reports on where and how you’re spending your time. Sites are auto-categorized and scored on a scale from “very productive” to “very distracting.” The result is a stark picture of your productivity—or procrastination—so you can reclaim those lost hours.

X-Notifier

xnotifier

X-notifier

X-Notifer lets you know how many unread emails you have in your various inboxes.

Constantly stopping what you’re doing to check your email is one of the most disruptive productivity habits. And it gets exponentially worse with each email account you have.

X-Notifier helps you manage your inbox addiction by checking all of your linked email accounts and notifying you—in a pop-up window, the Firefox status bar, or a sidebar—of the number of unread messages you have. The add-on supports most popular email services and protocols, and can be configured to support sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn by user script.

Save File To

As you can tell from its name, this add-on streamlines one of the most basic browser functions. Normally, you have to dig through the folder hierarchy on your hard drive each time you want to save a file. With Save File To, you don’t even have open the Save dialog. Just right click on a file and choose one of the “save to” options (links, image, page, etc.). The add-on automatically populates the menu with all your home-drive directories, which you can customize in the preferences.

save file to

Save To File

Save To File lets you save anything to your home directories from the right-click menu.

Download Plan

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Download Plan

Download Plan lets you scheudule your downloads for off-peak hours.

If your work entails downloading a lot of files, this add-on is essential. You can avoid peak times, bandwidth issues, and other impediments by creating a download schedule, organizing your links, and selecting where to save the files. Download Plan does all the heavy lifting, while you take care of other business.

 source”cnbc”

Internet Archive brings hundreds of classic Apple II games to your web browser

archiveappleii

The Internet Archive has been on a roll lately, bringing back classic MS-DOS games, Windows 3.1 software, and even defanged versions of old PC viruses.

Now, the site has hit a milestone with its Apple II collection: A group of anonymous hackers have successfully broken the elaborate copy-protection schemes on more than 500 classic games and programs. The result is that these Apple II classics are now playable directly in modern web browsers.

It’s worth noting that Archive.org’s Apple II collection already spanned thousands of titles—yes, including Number Munchers—before hitting this milestone. But as archivist Jason Scott explains in a blog post, a subset of these programs have proven particularly troublesome to preserve in their original form.

loderunner

“Off the shelf, the programs would include copy protection routines that went so far as to modify the performance of the floppy drive, or force the Apple II’s operating system to rewrite itself to behave in strange ways,” Scott wrote.

The difficulty of cracking these schemes meant that hackers would sometimes omit parts of the code, or embed “crack screens” or alternate color schemes as a way of putting a personal stamp their work. They also tended to focus entirely on popular arcade games rather than obscure software.

Archive.org’s “4am collection” (4am being a term for anonymous persons) attempts to preserve a wide swath of Apple II software in its original form. The site then uses its JavaScript-based emulator to run these games and programs directly in the browser. Each of these offerings include elaborate descriptions from the hackers on how they overcame the disk’s copy protection. (Here’s an example.)

To play the games, you need a modern browser such as Firefox or Chrome, with JavaScript enabled. Most games are playable with a keyboard, though it may take some experimentation to figure out the key mappings.

Why this matters: As with the Internet Archive’s DOS and Windows libraries, the Apple II catalog includes popular fare like Pac-Man and Arkanoid, but also plenty of titles so obscure that they’d surely be lost without efforts to run them on modern hardware. The anonymous hackers behind the 4am Collection are doing important work, even if it wades into legally murky territory.

[“source-gsmarena”]