Planet Coaster Spring Update

Planet Coaster Getting Free Spring Update in April

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Planet Coaster’s second major post-launch expansion is coming this Spring. Like the Winter Update in December, the Spring Update is completely free.

The Planet Coaster Spring Update adds several new rollercoaster types, new rides, and a new feature based on crime and security.

“A new danger lurks in the world of Planet Coaster,” states the press release. “Pickpockets and vandals will now operate in players’ parks. A crime-ridden park will see guests’ happiness fall along with your profits, but security guards and CCTV cameras are on hand to keep park guests safe and prevent mischief-makers from spoiling the fun.”

Here is all the new content coming with the Spring Update:

New Rollercoasters

  • Steel Hydra, a suspended swinging coaster
  • Trident, a shuttle coaster
  • Bakasura, an inverted boomerang shuttle coaster

New Tracked Rides

  • Speed Go Karts, build your own Go Karts tracks

New Rides

  • Elixir Machine, 360 degree spinning ride
  • Big Wheel, a Ferris wheel
  • ZoZo, I have no idea, but apparently it’s a classic

New Feature

  • Crime and Security, angry guests may vandalize park scenery and pickpockets will steal guests’ cash. New security staff can be hired and CCTV cameras built to monitor and prevent crime.

Expansion may be too broad a term, as these are smaller updates that add a few new rides and features. The Spring Update doesn’t seem to add nearly as much content as the Winter Update, though adding a new security element is nifty. Still, free is free! If you like theme park sims and yearn for the 90s era of theme park management, Planet Coaster fits the bill quite well (read our review).

The Planet Coaster Spring Update arrives as a free patch on April 11.

pathfinder

No Man’s Sky Adds Massive Pathfinder Update

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No Man’s Sky is one of the most controversial games in recent memory. Its launch last year was fraught with drama, both in technical execution and content delivered. Then, complete silence by the developers for several months. Last November, Hello Games released their first post-launch patch, The Foundation Update, which added planetary base building. The next big update just arrived, titled Pathfinder. The 1.2 patch adds planetary vehicles, base sharing, permadeath, new weapon mods, and more.

Three new moon-rover style vehicles called Exocraft have been added. They come in three different flavors, light, medium, and heavy, with the light Nomad able to glide over water. You can acquire Exocraft by hiring a Technician to your planetary base and completing their missions. Like spaceships, Exocraft can be equipped with scanners, mining lasers, weapons, and speed boosters.

Once you have your Exocraft you can also map out your own race courses using the new Race Initiator. Other players can attempt your course through the new base sharing feature. Custom built planetary bases are now available to upload and share via the Steam Workshop.

The Pathfinder update also doubles the customization options for your bases. Over 40 new parts have been added, as well as new textures and decals.

Starships have been given a big boost. Now you can finally own multiple starships in a large freighter. Ships have also been rebalanced into four different specializations: Fighter, Shuttle, Hauler, and Explorer. Each ship will then have a different class rating, from A to C, and the top-of-the-line S class. Weapons have also received a a similar specialization and class rebalance.

Other new updates include an overhaul to the game’s graphics, including better Ambient Lighting, Ambient Occlusion, and higher resolution textures. Support for the PS4 Pro has been added with 4K resolution. New weapon mods, a more hardcore Survival Mode with Permadeath, and an Instagram-like Photo mode with filters are all in this massive Pathfinder update.

What do we think? Is it enough to jump back into No Man’s Sky and give it another try, or has that proverbial starship already sailed on past?

girls make games

Sony Will Host Girls Make Games 2017 Summer Camp

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This year Sony is teaming up with educational and training group Girls Make Games to host their annual Summer Camp. This year’s Summer Camp, the fourth since Girls Make Games’ inception in 2014, will be held at the Sony Interactive America building in San Mateo, California. Full details are below:

Dates: July 10-28, 2017 (3 weeks, M-F)
Hours: 10am-4pm (early drop off and late pick up offered)
Tuition: $1,500 (Up to 100% financial aid available)
Venue: Sony Interactive Entertainment America LLC
2207 Bridgepointe Parkway
San Mateo, CA 94404
Registration: http://girlsmakegames.com

“It’s important for all of us at PlayStation to maintain a diverse and inclusive community that brings people together through their shared love of gaming,” says Shawn Layden, Chairman of PlayStation’s Worldwide Studios. “We’re excited to team up with Girls Make Games to offer young women the opportunity to learn about game development and, hopefully, inspire the next generation of creators.”

The Sony PlayStation team will not only host the event, but also provide scholarships and on-site mentoring from female executives and developers.

“We’re thrilled about working with PlayStation to encourage and empower more young women to learn about and pursue careers in technology and game development,” says Laila Shabir, CEO and founder of Girls Make Games. Shabir notes that while the number of women gamers has grown significantly (current statistics puts them at around 50%), “less than 15 percent of the games industry workforce is women.”

The Summer Camp is a day camp based around teamwork. There’s no age requirement or restriction, but typical camp goers are around Middle School aged. During the three week course, attendees will learn programming, computer science and computer art design, as well as confidence, industry knowledge, and teamwork skills. At the end of the camp, attendees will create their own collaborative video game, some of which have gone on to find success via crowdfunding on Kickstarter.

pax east logo

PAX East 2017 Takes Place This Weekend in Boston

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The eighth annual PAX East gaming convention begins today, March 10, and runs through the weekend. PAX East is held in Boston at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.

Since 2010 PAX East has rocketed in popularity, selling out every year to become one of the biggest gaming conventions in the U.S. (along with PAX West in Seattle).

If you’re not attending PAX East, don’t fret. We live in the age of live streaming, and Twitch.tv has you covered. No less than four different channels will broadcast various games and panels of PAX East. See the full schedule for the weekend here.

The keynote speaker for PAX East 2017 is game designer Jake Solomon, Lead Designer for XCOM: Enemy Unknown and XCOM 2 at Firaxis. The keynote speaker is the first panel at every PAX. Solomon will take the stage of the Main Theatre at 10:30 AM EST. You can watch it live on Twitch.

This year’s PAX Arena at PAX East will feature Rocket League and For Honor on Friday, Brawlhalla on Saturday, and close out with Super Smash Bros. 4 on Sunday. Live stream begins at Noon Eastern today.

More than 100 publishers will have booths on the massive show floor this year, from the big guys like Bethesda and Nintendo to the Indie Megabooth. Stay tuned for any major announcements and reveals.