This week in games: Dota 2 co-op, Darksiders III revealed, and The Witcher 3 in glorious 8K

The Witcher 3 in 8K. Eight. K. I can’t even believe it. Not too long ago 4K was just a glimmer on the horizon, then I laughed when people started talking about 5K. Now we’re at 8K? What happened? Where did 6K and 7K even go? And when can we stop talking in Ks?
That news, plus Rocket League is free for the weekend, Oculus shuts down its acclaimed Story Studio team, Valve opens up about receiving 75,000 support requests a day, Remedy confirms “Project 7,” The International 2’s funding campaign kicks off, Darksiders III comes back from the dead, and more.
This is gaming news for May 1 through 5.
[ Further reading: These 20 absorbing PC games will eat days of your life ]Free-kendLooking for something to play this weekend and determined not to crack open your wallet? The best sports game ever made a.k.a. Rocket League is free-to-play through Steam until Sunday morning Pacific time. Head here to install it or buy the game for a 30 percent discount.
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Tom Clancy’s The Division – Standard Edition [Online Game Code]
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$49.99MSRP $59.99Viewon Amazon
Provided you don’t bear a grudge against Uplay, you can also try out The Division for free through Sunday. It doesn’t look like the DLC is included, but the somewhat decent story mode is available to burn through if you’d like.
FuryWhen THQ died I thought this day would never come, but five years later here we are: Darksiders III exists, and will release in 2018. The game stars whip-wielding Fury, third horseman horselady of the apocalypse, and is made by Gunfire Games, comprised of multiple ex-Vigil employees. IGN has the details through its “IGN First” program, and you can check out the first trailer below.
8K GeraltWhat do you do with four of Nvidia’s monstrous Titan Xp graphics cards? Apparently you use them to churn out The Witcher 3 on Ultra at a stupid-high 8K resolution. You can see for yourself with this video from YouTuber Thirty IR, though the effect will no doubt be lost on your probably-not-8K monitor. (Via Kotaku )
Prepare to diiiiineIf you want more details on Code Vein, the new maybe- Souls-esque game from the God Eater folks, there’s now an actual trailer. Looks pretty, though I still don’t know what the hell to think about it otherwise.
3C3C1D119440927Speaking of over-the-top Japanese RPGs, Nier: Automata’s first DLC released this week, and it’s titled (wait for it) “3C3C1D119440927.” Seriously. There’s a launch trailer below, but all you really need to know is that the CEO of Square Enix Yosuke Matsuda is a boss character and you have to fight him.
And in case you’ve missed the zeitgeist, Nier: Automata is excellent. Well, aside from the PC performance issues you’ll need to fix with an unofficial fan mod/patch.
Mute-a-LayleeMaybe I’m just less susceptible than other people, but I didn’t find the gibberish voices in Yooka-Laylee particularly annoying. If it drives you up a wall though, good news: An upcoming patch will allow you to “skip dialogue faster, bypass cutscenes, or reduce those pesky gibberish voices,” according to Playtonic. Camera tweaks are also incoming.
Give me the cureWe already knew Remedy was working on a couple new projects after last year’s Quantum Break release, but a few more details came out this week. Remedy announced a publishing partnership with 505 Games for “Project 7,” meaning a Remedy game will land on a PlayStation console for the first time in over a decade. Other than that? It’s a “cinematic third-person action game set in a new Remedy-created universe,” which is…well, exactly what I’d expect from Remedy.
The Long DevelopmentIt’s something of a joke that Early Access survival games will never actually be finished, but The Long Dark is looking to prove critics and naysayers wrong later this year. That’s right, The Long Dark is actually going to add in its much-touted story mode starting with two episodes in August of this year and concluding with three more sometime in 2018, hitting 1.0 “full release” during that same stint.
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Your move, DayZ.
Outside OculusOculus is shutting down Oculus Story Studio, its internal dev team that made critically-acclaimed VR short films Henry, Lost, and Dear Angelica. The plan, according to Oculus’s Jason Rubin, is to “support more external production,” but it’s a damn shame—Story Studio made some of the highest-quality VR content, went to Sundance multiple times, and even developed Oculus’s amazing Quill art tool as an offshoot of Dear Angelica production.
It’s a pretty big loss for the VR community, though hopefully the team spins off and works on some excellent stuff outside of Oculus. One has to wonder whether this move is a result of Oculus’s legal woes or the internal reshuffling that’s seen founder Palmer Luckey leave the company and longtime CEO Brendan Iribe move to a lower-profile role. Maybe Facebook just doesn’t see a future in VR film, or at least doesn’t want to sink internal development resources into it? Hard to say.
Oculus also announced (via VentureBeat) that it won’t have a booth at E3 this year. Again, it’s hard to tell if it’s skipping E3 because it feels there’s no point (as with EA and Wargaming) or if it’s indicative of more serious problems at the company. Time will tell, I guess.
International, againDota 2 is winding up for The International 2017, its annual tournament, and Valve’s officially started selling the Battle Pass for this year’s iteration—the proceeds of which go to fund The International’s prize pool. Less than day in and the prize pool already sits (as of writing) at $2.5 million.
For the record: $20.7 million is the target to beat from last year’s prize.
Sweetening the pot this year? All Battle Pass owners get access to a two-part co-op campaign, titled Siltbreaker. You can find the details here, but the short version:
“This all-new campaign calls upon you to party up with three friends or queue-met allies to battle through a diverse landscape of loathsome monsters, cunning traps, and other lethal terrors. With the fate of Dark Reef and the safety of the free seas hanging by a fish-gut thread, you’ll need to work together if you’re to find any hope for survival.”
Take a breathMore Valve news as we close out the week. If you’ve ever submitted a support request to Valve and been annoyed you received a canned reply, Valve wants you to take a breath and consider this: Apparently the company receives 75 thousand support requests every single day, mostly related to refunds.
If you want to dig into the numbers, Valve’s given support requests their own stats page. I still think Valve’s support should be better, given the importance of Steam, but oof—75 thousand requests a day sure does sound like a ton.
Half-Left 3And one more Valve tidbit: Half-Life 2/Portal/Left 4 Dead writer Chet Faliszek departed Valve this week, making him the third high-profile writer to leave the company in the last year or so (along with Erik Wolpaw and Marc Laidlaw). Best of luck to him, and best of luck to Valve. Seems like writers must be in short supply over there at this point.
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Hayden writes about games for PCWorld and doubles as the resident Zork enthusiast.
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