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Overwatch Developers Talk About Potential Sequel

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While everyone is celebrating the 2-year anniversary of Blizzard’s insanely popular ‘Overwatch’ title, assistant Game Director Aaron Keller and Senior Game Producer Matthew Hawley discussed the possibility of an Overwatch 2.

“I think at the core sitting here at the two-year anniversary, we’ve had a wildly successful 6v6 shooter game which has blown us away with how the community has responded to it,” Keller said, during an interview with GameSpot.

“We dip our toes into different areas here and there with the Archives event and Junkenstein. But I think our focus is really on keeping the community engaged with the 6v6 shooter that we have on the live service.”

Its worth questioning if it would even be worthwhile for the team to even look into developing a sequel, especially with the first title going so strong and considering that they can probably forge on for the next few years by just adding new content, fixes, and updates.

“Running a live service game takes a lot of work and I hope the community knows we have been committed to continually improving the game and creating content,” Hawley said.

“He then went on to mention how much larger the development team is now compared to when the game launched, stating that they have “put all of that into working on the live game and the new maps, heroes, and events like Anniversary.”

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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 1.09 Patch

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A brand new patch has added a host of new things for Call of Duty Black Ops 4, including some new additions to Blackout.

Treyarch sent out the following message regarding the update:

“On December 11, Operation Absolute Zero launches for free on PS4, including a new Specialist and weapons in MP and Blackout, the debut of Hijacked and the ARAV vehicle in Blackout, all-new features in Zombies, our revamped Black Market, and much more! To set the stage, we’ve begun rolling out our new 1.09 title update a little early this week starting on PS4, with other platforms to follow.

First up, Multiplayer: We’ve added Nuketown Custom Games, improved melee and Purifier reliability, reduced Titan effectiveness, updated transition stages for Diamond and Dark Matter camos, improved stability, and made several other quality-of-life updates to the game. Read on below for the full list.

We’ve also made fundamental design changes to the map, audio, and Armor in Blackout with this update, including adjustments to the SDM and Spitfire to better balance out the weapon classes, environmental changes to key destinations around the map, and more. See the Blackout section of our patch notes below and jump into the game to find out what’s new across the entire Blackout map, just in time for the holidays.

Our 1.09 update marks the launch of the first of this week’s three new Zombies features with the addition of Daily Tier Skip credit for Zombies! With this update, Zombies players can now earn a bonus Black Market Tier skip by completing 15 rounds in one match of Classic Zombies. We’ve also implemented new high-round fixes in Zombies as we gear up for more new content coming this week, as well as fixes for specific crashes that could occur across each of our four current maps. This is our initial wave of fixes targeted at high-round play, and should result in a smoother Zombies experience for all players.”


SUMMARY

  • Blackout map visual and environmental updates
  • Blackout audio and Armor design updates
  • Blackout weapon balancing (SDM and Spitfire)
  • Improved MP melee reliability
  • Updates to Prophet, Firebreak, and Seraph
  • Nuketown, Gun Game, and Safeguard added to Custom Games
  • Various MP Challenge fixes
  • Daily Tier Skips and high-round fixes in Zombies
  • Stability improvements in MP and Zombies
  • Character customization improvements
  • Options added: Global ADS sensitivity, tap to reload in Blackout

PS4

We’ve made the following changes on PS4 in our 1.09 update, with Xbox One and PC to follow:

Multiplayer

  • Weapons
    • Melee
      • Increased melee detection range for melee weapons, including the Bayonet and Stiletto Knife Operator Mods.
    • Titan
      • Reduced ADS flinch mitigation (also applies in Blackout and Zombies).
  • Specialists
    • Prophet
      • Reduced Tempest ammo count from 14 to 10.
      • Additional tuning to Tempest accuracy incoming soon.
    • Firebreak
      • Purifier now more reliably connects with enemies.
    • Seraph
      • Increased Annihilator earn rate.
  • Gameplay
    • EKIA credit can now carry over after respawn when a player damages an enemy and dies before their teammate finishes that enemy off.
    • EKIA credit will now clear after 5 seconds from last damage dealt.
  • Custom Games
    • Added Nuketown to the Custom Games map list.
    • Added Gun Game to the Custom Games mode list.
    • Added Safeguard to the Custom Games mode list.
    • Addressed an issue in Search & Destroy Custom Games with higher round limits ending after the 4th round.
  • Scorestreaks
    • RC-XD
      • Addressed an issue that prevented activating a second RC-XD after one was already used.
    • Drone Squadron
      • Start-of-round restriction timer is now applied to the Drone Squadron.
    • Gunship
      • Resolved an issue where some Gunship shots could impact the Gunship aircraft.
  • Challenges
    • Not Outgunned
      • Not Outgunned Challenge now properly tracks progress in Heist and Control.
    • Ninja
      • Ninja Challenge now properly tracks progress in Heist.
    • Surf’s Up
      • Surf’s Up Challenge now properly tracks progress in Domination around contested points.
    • Threat Neutralized
      • Threat Neutralized Challenge now properly tracks Lightning Strike kills in Domination.
      • Threat Neutralized Challenge now properly tracks progress in Control.
  • Weapon Camos
    • Modified requirements for Diamond and Dark Matter active visual stages to transition every 5 kills (not only kills without dying) and not reset on death.
    • Modified Killathon Reactive Camo to activate visual stages every 5 kills (not only kills without dying) and not reset on death.
  • Stability – Fixed crashes that could occur:
    • When launching Custom Games with Custom Classes or Specialist Draft disabled.
    • When a player disconnected while escorting the Robot in Safeguard.
    • When attempting to attribute score to players that disconnected.
    • When a disconnected enemy caused damage to a player’s equipment in certain circumstances.
    • When the player’s Attack Helicopter was destroyed.
    • When attempting to destroy a vehicle when out of bounds.
  • Miscellaneous
    • Addressed an issue where players with Diamond Camo equipped could face a different direction in third person.
    • Addressed an issue where attempting to fire an empty weapon could leave the shot count at 1, preventing the use of the Mesh Mine.
    • Addressed an issue where the NVIR Optic could cause the Engineer Perk to malfunction if the player switched between classes.
    • Secondary weapons now show in the Specialist Draft if no primary weapon is equipped.

Blackout

Audio

We’ve made the changes below with the goal of creating more predictability around when a player can hear another player’s footsteps, as well as a pass on unrelated game audio that could significantly impact footsteps. We intend to perform additional tuning on unrelated gameplay audio that egregiously impacts the player’s ability to hear other players moving in the world. Details include:

  • Occlusion
    • When players don’t have line of sight to another player, some of the sounds those players make are occluded using an audio filter. This filter subtracts some of the lower frequencies (AKA “bass”) to help to create a distinction between players who are in very close proximity to other players, but not necessarily in the same structure.
      • Changed occlusion levels to prevent situations that could make footsteps nearly inaudible.
      • Refactored occlusion code to properly occlude specific materials and buildings that were missing occlusion.
      • Terrain now occludes properly.
      • Fixed issues with garage doors that kept them from occluding properly when opening and closing them.
  • Distances
    • Rebalanced the distances at which players can hear first hear someone approaching.
    • Unified distances related to certain movement types – for example, sliding should now be heard about the same distance as other player movement sounds.
  • Gameplay Modifiers
    • Awareness and Dead Silence Perks have been changed accordingly with the new distance settings for footstep audio.
  • Directionality
    • Lowered the reverb on third-person footsteps, which helps with the player’s understanding of the overall location those footsteps are coming from. This is especially true when wearing headphones/playing in stereo and not in 5.1.
  • First and Third Person
    • Further lowered the first-person footstep volume that players hear themselves make.
    • Further lowered volume of teammates’ footsteps.
    • Decreased first-person weapon audio slightly to balance with third-person weapons heard by others.
    • Addressed an issue with first-person splash audio where jumping into water sounded louder than it should.
  • Environment
    • Lowered volume on the main ambient blend track (the overall sound made by the environment that players always hear, varying by map location and elevation), allowing subtler gameplay cues to be more audible more often, including footsteps.
    • Reduced volume and distance that garage doors can be heard from.
    • Modified the volume and distances that opening Stashes can be heard from.

Armor Redesign

Armor has been completely overhauled in Blackout. Our goals for these changes are to allow Armor to survive multiple engagements, and to reward players for taking out an enemy and destroying the enemy’s Armor in the process. While coming out of an engagement on the winning side feels good, it doesn’t feel good to have your Armor destroyed with each engagement you find yourself in. As such, players can find and use Armor Plates to repair damaged Armor, which are applied from your Inventory on all platforms, and from both the Inventory or the Quick Equip menu on consoles.

It takes approximately two seconds to use an Armor Plate to repair a segment of damaged Armor. One Armor Plate will repair a single Armor pip, regardless of Armor level. We will closely monitor the amount of available Armor Plates in the world and make adjustments quickly as needed. Details include:

  • Armor Plate Locations
    • In enemy Death Stashes after destroying the Armor of an opponent.
    • In Equipment Stashes.
    • More rarely, on the ground as a lootable item.
  • Durability
    • Armor durability has been increased, allowing Armor to last longer through an engagement.
    • Armor durability indicators have been updated to display individual pips of Armor.
  • Damage Mitigation
    • The percentage of damage that Armor mitigates has not been changed. As we monitor how these changes to Armor affect gameplay in Blackout, we will continue to evaluate damage mitigation values.

Map Changes

  • Overall
    • Added seasonal changes to foliage and softer winter lighting across the entire map.
  • Hydro Dam
    • Added elevators to allow players to get up and down in alternative ways.
    • Provided additional cover on the rooftops of both major buildings.
    • Opened additional rooms between the generator buildings.
  • Factory
    • Opened 3 previously sealed buildings to offer additional looting opportunities.
    • Added 2 new pipes to allow players to navigate between structures in alternative ways.
    • 2 previously closed train cars are now accessible.
    • 13 containers are now accessible.
  • Nuketown Island
    • Opened up 4 previously closed garages throughout Nuketown Island.
  • Map Boundaries
    • Expanded and improved upon boundaries on all sides of the map to be more consistent with the physical indicator of those boundaries seen inside the map, including:
      • Fence along the northern boundary of the map.
      • Power lines along the eastern side of the map.
      • Pipeline along the southern border of the map.
    • The mini-map now reflects the location of these boundaries.

Weapon Balance

  • SDM
    • Reduced damage.
    • Increased ADS time in and out.
    • Increased recoil.
  • Spitfire
    • Reduced damage.
    • Increased recoil.

General

  • Smoke Trails
    • Added Smoke Trails to wingsuits during initial infiltration to give players a better sense of how many people are dropping near their location.
  • Reloading
    • Added a new option in the Blackout Options menu to enable reloading by tapping the reload button, rather than releasing the reload button.
  • Zombies in Blackout
    • Zombies will now have a chance to drop ammo when killed.

Zombies

  • Tier Progression
    • Added Daily Tier Skip credit for completing 15 rounds in a game of Classic Zombies each day.
  • Stability
    • High Rounds
      • Fixes for multiple memory leaks and other issues that could lead to crashes at high rounds in all maps.
    • General – Fixed crashes that could occur:
      • During respawn after the Join The Party Elixir or Charm of Impatience Talisman was used.
      • When every player disconnected before the match started.
      • When the player disconnected while certain audio played.
      • When sharing a Mystery Box weapon.
      • In rare cases when using the Scepter of Ra.
      • In rare cases when enemies transformed into Catalysts or Blightfathers.
      • In rare cases when taking damage to Armor.
      • In rare cases when a player disconnected after using a trap.
    • Voyage of Despair – Fixed crashes that could occur:
      • During steps 4 or 7 of the Main Quest.
      • When the player disconnected while using the Kraken.
      • When shocking a zombie with Kill-O-Watt while it was transforming into a Catalyst.
      • When a player disconnected while reviving another player.
      • In rare cases when using the Sentry or Ragnarok DG-5.
    • IX – Fixed crashes that could occur:
      • In rare cases while Perk statues randomly cycled.
      • In rare cases while using the Hammer of Valhalla.
      • In rare cases during special rounds in IX.
      • In rare cases when using Serpent’s Kiss on large group of Zombies.
    • Blood of the Dead – Fixed crashes that could occur:
      • When killing the Warden during the Michigan Avenue ghost escort due to a memory leak that could occur.
      • In certain cases during step 3 of Main Quest.
      • In rare cases when throwing the Hell’s Retriever at the bird during step 2 of the Main Quest.
      • In rare cases when using the Acid Trap in the Cafeteria.
      • In rare cases during the prison breakout step in the Main Quest.
      • In rare sound-related cases tied to the Spectral Shield.
      • In Theater Mode while spectating Richtofen when initiating the Magmagat quest.
    • Classified – Fixed crashes that could occur:
      • When entering codes during the Classified Wonder Weapon quest.
      • In rare cases when using teleporters.

General

  • Character Customization
    • Warpaints can now be equipped with outfits across different Themes on the same Specialist without having to own a corresponding outfit.
    • Character Personalization menu updated to separate Outfits from Warpaints, with larger display of items.
  • Weapon Camos
    • Camos (Multiplayer & Zombies) and Reactive Camos (Multiplayer) obtained through the Black Market can now be equipped in the Weapon Personalization menu via the Black Market tab.
  • Weapon Reticles
    • Reticles obtained through the Black Market can now be equipped in the Reticle Personalization menu via the Black Market tab.
  • Options (Global)
    • Added ADS Sensitivity Options for both high zoom optics and regular weapons.
  • Specialist HQ
  • Improved stability with Ajax’s Combat Training mission.

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Ghost Recon Wildlands Introduces New Mission, PVPV Maps, Classes, More

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Ghost Recon Wildlands has rolled out a brand new mission call Special Operation 3, among a host of additional content.

With the new Special Operation 3 comes new PvE and PvP content, new cosmetic items, and a brand new mission called Silent Spade, which is inspired by Ghost Recon: Future Soldier.

In regards to the new PvE content there will be new challenges, with rewards such as new weapons like the Honey Badger SMG, the ACS-12 Shotgun and accompanying when completed.

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Battlefield 5 Adds New Patch

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A new patch has been dropped for Battlefield 5 and while it’s a small download at 600MB, it addresses some bugs that needed addressing.

The main take-away is the addressing of the mini-map spotting bug, which caused players to automatically get spotted on the mini-map, making them easily identifiable by other players at any time.

DICE’s new update also applied the fix for Recon players, who were experiencing a bug that caused them to lose access to throwing knives.

The spawn timer on some Domination maps has been fixed as well.

Here are some of the other fixes that the patch notes outlined:

Players no longer get spotted on the mini-map after killing an enemy.

Fixed an issue where high-level Recon players lost access to the Throwing Knife weapon.

Adjusted the initial respawn count on specific maps in Domination mode.

Fixed a crash that could occur when being in the Practice Range as a squad.

Fixed a crash that could occur when viewing the Tides of War menu.

Fixed a crash that could occur when playing the Nordlys War Story.

Fixed broken audio during when watching the tutorial videos.

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