PC Gaming News - March 4, 2009

To get the day started right, here are a few gaming nuggets regarding Warhammer Online, Majesty 2 and some whacked-out hospital game. Got anything that belongs here? Send it here.

Bitter Rivals Kicks Off in Warhammer Online: AoR
Yesterday while I lazily slept on the couch, Mythic announced that the first in-game event for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning officially began. The event takes place from March 3rd to March 10th, enabling players to earn in-game rewards and even unlock the Dwarf Slayer and Orc Choppa careers. The event also sparks the new Call to Arms live expansion, which players can now chat about on the new forums launched here.
New Majesty 2 Video

While we don't provide gaming videos here on Tom's Hardware (yet), Paradox Interactive released a new clip from the fantasy-based strategy game, Majesty 2. Apparently the clip is the introductory movie, detailing the game's back story. "The intro movie chronicles the terrible events leading up to a Demon Lord occupying the throne of Ardania and tells how you, the player and last of the royal bloodline, must attempt to wrest the throne away from the hell spawn and free your kingdom from its fiery grip!" Watch the YouTube version here.

Gary's Mod Updated
Steam is reporting that a new update for Gary's Mod now allows gamers the ability to click the avatar in the scoreboard and open the community page. Also, the new update fixes Monday's update that created incompatibilities with many 3rd party mods. The new Gary's Mod update will take place once the Steam client restarts.

Tom Clancy's HAWX Demo on Steam
Steam is also reporting that a playable demo for Tom Clancy's HAWX is now available to download. "Dominate the skies for the first time and battle planes, tanks, and amphibious assaults. Try out two full missions and gain experience points to unlock three real, licensed planes: the F-16A Fighting Falcon, the SU-35 SuperFlanker, and the AV-8B Harrier II."

Aspyr Set to Publish BCFx - The Doug Williams Edition
This morning Aspyr said it has entered a partnership with Nerjyzed Entertainment, Inc to publish the PC and current-gen console game, BCFx - The Doug Williams Edition. According to the company, the game will use Epic's UE3 engine, offering football action that "immerses players in the rich culture, history and pageantry of football game day on Historically Black College and University (HBCU) campuses." The game will also feature two unique rhythm games: the interactive Halftime Show and Drum Line Challenge.

Hysteria Hospital: Emergency Ward Next Month
Oxygen Games plans to release Hysteria Hospital: Emergency Ward next month, a "fun and frantic" hospital game for the PC, Nintendo Wii and DS. According to the frantic press release, gamers are to treat as many patients as possible while keeping them restrained and medicated. Sounds like my household. " The more patients you treat the more money your hospital will make! If you don’t treat them… they won’t pay! Buy and sell machines and equipment that will help your hospital provide the services that the patients need. Progress from hospital to hospital until you are in charge of a hospital with 3 floors full of unusual machines, crazy doctors and needy patients! Everyone is relying on you to help them! Can you handle the pressure?!" No, sorry, I don't think I can handle the stress.

THQ Strikes Back
THQ sent over an email addressing comments made about the QA Department over at Volition. Apparently there has been a few misunderstandings regarding what happened, thus a little "inaccurate reporting" became the result. Here ere the facts as told by Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications, Julie MacMedan: " As part of THQ Inc’s, previously announced business realignment plans and related headcount reductions, there was a layoff yesterday at the Champaign QA facility.  This will result in the eventual closure of the facility with a transfer of sixteen employees to Volition. It will not result in any layoffs within the core development teams at Volition. Volition remains a key development studio within THQ, and will continue to employ 236 staff. The layoffs include 47 temporary employees who will not be having their service extended.  Unfortunately, fluctuating headcount among the temporary staff is common based on when our games ship.  In addition, 39 full-time staff will be laid off. All laid off employees (both full-time and temporary) will be given at least sixty days’ notice.  We will do what we can to assist them in finding work in the community or elsewhere in THQ."

Empire: Total War on Steam
As the heading states, Sega's RTS Empire: Total War is now available to purchase and download via Steam, making use of the Steamworks suite. "For multiplayer support in both the electronic and retail versions of the game, Empire: Total War leverages Steamworks for Achievements, statistics, authentication, matchmaking, and support for the Steam Community. On the marketing side, Steamworks was used to fulfill a variety of promotional offers."

Legio Heads to Mezmer Games
Paradox Interactive said that its Mezmer Games branch will publish the turn-based strategy game Legio in Q2 2009 for $19.99. Legio, a mixture of chess and a turn-based war game, takes place in a mythical fantasy world where magicians, warriors and monsters battle for domination. "Playing Legio is an intense experience, requiring careful strategic thinking, rewarding both courage and cleverness! Both players control an equal army of characters, with the goal of eliminating the other player's army. Learning to play Legio is quite easy, but it is a great challenge to master all the various strategies."

Watchmen: The End is Nigh Now Available
In addition to the Xbox 360 version on Live Arcade, PC gamers can download Watchmen: The End is Nigh from Steam and Direct2Drive. For $19.99, gamers play a two unique Watchmen characters, each with their own abilities: Rorschach and Nite Owl. " The lines between good and bad have been blurred and crime and terror run rampant in the streets. The alleys, rooftops and sewers are crawling with criminals and brutal gangs. And now, Underboss — in a daring escape — has broken out of prison and is ruling with vicious darkness. The city is in need of saviors and only masked hero vigilantes answer the call... you answer the call."

Thriller New Media Formed
Based out of Austin, Texas, this new company will focus on creating and operating MMOGs. More specifically, content will be centered on military- and espionage-themed topics targeting the largest video game genres: first person shooter (FPS) and action gaming experiences. "Thriller military-action-spy genre games, together with other aggregated content, will form the basis of a new social networking hub the company is also developing at Thriller New Media," the company said. Many members of the team stem from MicroProse, and said that the new venture aims to reach the same stature.

New Need for Speed: Shift Screens
Electronic Arts sent over eight new screenshots from the upcoming Need for Speed: Shift game slated to hit the PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PSPthis fall. Click on the screenshot to the left to check out the entire gallery!

  • bustapr
    Already played HAWX demo and it looks great and is very fun. The only bad thing is that on ps3, you cant play this game on a crt at 480i.
  • JeanLuc
    You should have reported the fact that Soviet Assault has been dropped for the consoles and is only being released for the PC. That would make the day for a lot of PC gamers!
  • tenor77
    You know I played HAWX and it is freakin beautiful.....but the camera choice is TERRIBLE! A flying game with a nearly free floating camera or being off to the side? Why can't I be in the cockpit? I wanted to like it, but I won't be buying this one.
  • I believe you can be in the cock-pit by allowing limiters off. You can do this by pressing l2 and r2 at the same time.
  • NuclearShadow
    JeanLucYou should have reported the fact that Soviet Assault has been dropped for the consoles and is only being released for the PC. That would make the day for a lot of PC gamers!
    Strange any word on why?
  • Tindytim
    Yesterday while I lazily slept on the couch

    bustaprAlready played HAWX demo and it looks great and is very fun. The only bad thing is that on ps3, you cant play this game on a crt at 480i.You don't have a DVI cable and a DVI-HDMI adapter for a monitor?