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XCOM: Enemy Unknown gets acquainted with Android, out now

XCOM: Enemy Unknown is out now on Google Play, commander. The new Android port is priced $10/£7.14, and according to a message from XCOM HQ, an advance on the Amazon Appstore is expected "soon."

Despite claiming the lives of many of our best friends - or at least a bunch of soldiers named after them - we ranked Enemy Unknown as our second-best game of 2012. The good news: Firaxis transitioned the console and PC release into a "slick, portable package" on iOS (pictured above), and hopefully that'll pan out the same way on Android.

Humble Mobile Bundle 5 adds Enviro-Bear, R-Type, Paper Monsters

Humble Mobile Bundle 5 is now nine games strong with the addition of Enviro-Bear 2010, R-Type and Paper Monsters. These three games are locked under the "pay more than the average" tier, joining The Cave, The Room Two and Carcassonne. Available for any price you want are Bag It, R-Type 2 and Aralon: Sword and Shadow.

There's one week left in this Humble Bundle. This time around, there are two charities you can send your cash to: Child's Play and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. You can also split your money between the developers and Humble itself.
[Image: Humble Bundle]

Assassin's Creed series tops 73 million in sales


Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed series reached a total of 73 million in sales according to the publisher's corporate website, which lists its "worldwide best-selling franchises." Assassin's Creed, which has featured six releases in the main series since its 2007 debut and eight additional games on browser and portable platforms, leads Ubisoft's second-best-selling property Just Dance (48 million) by 25 million units.

Assassin's Creed will likely continue to sell by the millions given that the next game, Assassin's Creed: Unity, will arrive on PS4, Xbox One and PC this holiday season. Unity was just announced in March and takes place in Paris during the French Revolution of the 18th century, a setting that was vaguely foretold at the end of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.

The next three series in the publisher's top five in sales bear the late Tom Clancy's name: Splinter Cell (30 million), Rainbow Six (26 million) and Ghost Recon (25 million). Head past the break to see the rest of Ubisoft's sales list.

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Doctor Who: Legacy update may be difficult to Master

The first major update to Doctor Who: Legacy, the free-to-play iOS and Android puzzle game based on the BBC's sci-fi universe, will introduce longtime series villain The Master as well as a new Perk system, new Expert mode levels and new versions of The Doctor to play as.

The Master will appear as he did when he was played by Roger Delgado, Peter Pratt and John Simms, while the game will add the First, Second, Ninth and War Doctors - played by William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Christopher Eccleston and John Hurt, respectively. The game's new Perk system will allow players to customize their characters and companions, unlocking abilities as you progress through the new content.

If you're feeling particularly perplexed by some of Legacy's puzzles, just remember: YANA - you are not alone.

No, seriously, you've got companions to help you out. Use 'em and stuff.
[Image: BBC]

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King crushes trademark dispute with Banner Saga, CandySwipe devs

Candy Crush Saga developer King settled trademark disputes with The Banner Saga developer Stoic Studio and CandySwipe developer Runsome Apps, according to updates from both studios.

"Stoic is pleased to have come to an agreement with King regarding Stoic's The Banner Saga trademark, which enables both parties to protect their respective trademarks now and in the future," Stoic Studio wrote, referring to the ongoing tension between the two developers over the term "saga." King said in January that it wasn't against The Banner Saga's name, though its legal opposition to Stoic's own trademark filing remained. At the time, Stoic said it would make another "saga" game regardless of King's trademark.

Runsome Apps wrote that it is withdrawing its opposition to King's trademark for "candy," and the Candy Crush Saga developer is pulling its counterclaim against Runsome Apps. "I have learned that they picked the Candy Crush name before I released my game and that they were never trying to take my game away," the developer wrote. "Both our games can continue to coexist without confusing players." King withdrew its application to trademark "candy" in the U.S. in February, and saw opposition to its European trademark for the word in March from Cut the Rope developer ZeptoLab.

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Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition out now on Android

BioWare's classic PC role-playing game, Baldur's Gate, is now available for Android devices in an enhanced port developed by Beamdog studio division Overhaul Games.

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition adopted a variety of enhancements and new features during its transition to mobile platforms, and originally launched for iOS platforms in 2012. Enhanced Edition includes all content from the original 1998 Baldur's Gate and its expansion Tales of the Sword Coast, along with The Black Pits arena mode and other new quests available via in-app purchases.

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition is priced at $9.99.

[Image: BioWare / Beamdog]

Portabliss: Trials Frontier

This is Portabliss, a column about downloadable games that can be played on the go.

Hi, my name is Earnest and I have a motorcycle problem. It started small, a few races here and there, a couple minor upgrades, but before I knew it, I was standing on a street corner, panhandling for enough cash to make it through just one more run. Don't pity me though. It's too late for that. Instead, take a lesson from my struggle. Remind yourself each morning that no matter how much the withdrawals hurt, no matter how hard it is to cope with your demons, spending $5 on virtual gas for your fake motorcycle is an awful investment.

That fanciful scenario was brought to you by developer RedLynx and its new iOS (and eventually Android) entry in the Trials series, Trials Frontier. If you've played any of the prior Trials games, you can likely commiserate with my addiction, but, unfortunately, the microtransactions present in the mobile game are a glaring dark spot on an otherwise glowing pedigree.

Don't let that ominous introduction scare you, though. From a design perspective, Trials Frontier is one of the most engaging iOS games available. It offers a short race structure – almost every event can be completed in under a minute – which is perfect for portable play, but more critically, RedLynx made some very intelligent choices when designing Frontier's controls.

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Sci-fi RTS Salvaged takes two screens to play on PC, tablet


Opposable Games recently showed off Salvaged, a real-time strategy game that requires a bit of multitasking from its players. The tactical sci-fi game is played using two screens, one on any iOS or Android tablet or smartphone (as the controller) and the other being a monitor via PC, Mac or Linux.

In Salvaged, players act as one of many operators for a Remote Interstellar Salvage Crew (RISC), boarding wrecked ships to locate loot and retrieve each ship's black box recorders. The touchscreen in players' hands offers a top-down view of the frantic, squad-based action, allowing players to issue commands to their team and assess alien threats as well as interact with the wrecked ships themselves by hacking terminals, downloading data and restoring power and lighting. The second screen on players' PCs shows the operation in real-time through the squad's shoulder-mounted cameras.

The UK developer cited classic games like Captive and the 1993 version of Space Hulk as well both the original XCOM and XCOM: Enemy Unkown as inspirations for the game, though players may recall FTL: Faster Than Light and Spelunky when it comes to the game's replayability. Salvaged's crew, environments, enemies and spoils are all procedurally generated, and like the aforementioned roguelikes, once a crewmember dies, they will be gone forever.

The developer is seeking $125,000 by Thursday, May 15 to fund the game, of which it is just scratching the $10,000 mark as of this writing.
[Image: Opposable Games]

Gold Rush-era empire builder 1849 strikes paydirt on May 8

While normally you'd need a mule and scraggly beard to properly reenact the California Gold Rush, developer SomaSim's upcoming 1849 will allow players to build a mining empire from the comforts of their own home.

Slated to debut on PC, Mac, iPad and Android tablets on May 8, the simulation drops players into one of 20 virtual cities, each based on a real Gold Rush-era boomtown. SomaSim cites SimCity as a direct influence on 1849 and claims that players will need to build mines, attract workers, find ways to keep said workers fed and entertained, and establish trade networks to ship ore out of the wilderness. SomaSim promises a campaign consisting of 20 distinct scenarios designed to test different aspects of a player's mining talents, alongside an endless sandbox mode.

If you'd rather not wait until May 8 to kick off your mining career, 1849 is currently available in Early Access form from Indie Game Stand and the Mac Game Store. The former offers both PC and Mac versions of 1849, while the latter strictly features OS X software. Both sites are offering 1849 for $10, and each will be updated with new content as the game nears its official launch.
[Image: SomaSim]

Season 2 of The Walking Dead haunts Vita next week

While the Vita still lags behind its console and computer counterparts, fans of Telltale's critically beloved The Walking Dead won't have to wait much longer for the second season of the emotionally charged zombie adventure.

Barring any unforeseen catastrophe, The Walking Dead: Season 2 will make its Vita debut on April 22. To make up for the delayed release, Telltale has opted to launch both Episode 1 and Episode 2 of the new season simultaneously. Come April 22, both episodes will be available from the PlayStation Network Store at a price of $5, though if you plan to eventually play through all five planned episodes of Season 2, you'll find that the $15 Season Pass offers a 20 percent discount over purchasing each episode individually.

Additionally, Telltale has announced that The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season is now available on Android devices including the Nvidia Shield, Amazon Fire TV and Amazon Kindle HDX.

Eufloria Adventures hits PS Mobile this week

Omni Systems brings its latest project to the PlayStation Vita and supported Android platforms this week with the release of Eufloria Adventures, a PlayStation Mobile-exclusive follow-up to its ambient real-time strategy game Eufloria.

Eufloria Adventures puts players in control of a single floating Seedling Ship for a series of exploration-based challenges, contrasting the strategic, troop-swarming gameplay of the original Eufloria. Levels are procedurally generated, and players can choose to specialize in Speed, Strength, or Energy attributes as the difficulty ramps up at lower depths.

Eufloria Adventures includes both a casual mode focusing on low-key exploration and a roguelike mode for hardcore players. The game is available from the PlayStation Store for $7.99.

[Image: Omni Systems]

Humble Mobile Bundle 5 explores The Room 2, The Cave, and more


Humble Bundle is back with another serving of high-profile Android games, featuring Double Fine's The Cave, Fireproof Games' The Room 2 and other standout apps in the newly launched Humble Mobile Bundle 5.

Pay at least $1 and you'll get Crescent Moon Games' action-RPG Aralon: Sword and Shadow, Hidden Variable's grocery-bagging puzzler Bag It!, and an Android port of Irem's classic arcade shooter R-Type 2. The Room 2, The Cave, and Carcassonne are available for buyers who beat the bundle's average purchase price (currently under $4), and more games will be added at a later date.

Humble Mobile Bundle 5 will be available through April 29.

[Video: Humble Bundle]

Microsoft announces Age of Empires: World Domination for mobile


We've known since last summer that Microsoft was looking to bring its Age of Empires series to mobile, but earlier this week we were given an official announcement and title. The game, which is being developed by KLab, is called Age of Empires: World Domination. It's coming to iOS, Android and Windows devices this summer. You can check out the announcement trailer above.

Unfortunately, there's not much else to go on at the moment, other than the game will feature Celts, Huns, Vikings and Franks. It's not clear if gameplay will follow in the series' traditional real-time strategy footsteps or be something else, but the trailer promises "an all new battle system reimagined for mobile."

Cry havoc and let slip the fingertips of war.
[Image: Microsoft]

OnLive cuts price of CloudLift subscription fee nearly in half

OnLive launched CloudLift last month, a service that lets users stream its selection of games from capable machines to devices that wouldn't normally be able to play them - think tablets and underpowered computers. CloudLift used to cost $14.99 a month, but that subscription fee has been slashed to $7.95, presumably because price drops are awesome.

Saints Row 4, Batman: Arkham Origins and The LEGO Movie Videogame serve as highlights among Cloudlift's offerings, all of which can be streamed from Steam if you own copies of the games there. Given that your interest in Cloudlift likely depends on whether the service stands up to your expectations, you can try a free 7-day trial by finding CloudLift in the OnLive application's Market.
[Image: OnLive]

Harmonix's free-to-play Record Run planned for May release

Record Run, Harmonix's free-to-play, rhythmic runner that builds stages from the music library on a player's device, was announced yesterday at PAX East 2014. According to Polygon, project director John Drake announced today that the mobile game will reach Australia and Canada within a few weeks, with a wider launch on Android and iOS devices following in May.

As a song progresses, players will switch between lanes of pavement to snatch up levitating discs of vinyl. Aside from accumulating a massive record collection, Record Run-ners can take on missions with more specific objectives, like collecting a certain amount of records or points. Weekly leaderboards are planned as well, but all-time scores will also be viewable.
[Image: Harmonix]

The Internet is your storytelling campfire in Storium [Update]



Ever tell ghost stories around a campfire? Or recount your life's adventures at a party? Storium by Stephen Hood aims to recreate those experiences, with the Internet acting not only as your audience, but your collaborators. You begin by choosing a world with a unique setting and history, and from there, create your own tale to tell within it. Other players can then join in on your story, contributing their own characters and actions.

The game is focused on writing, but mixes in game mechanics such as cards representing characters, items, obstacles and goals to keep players focused and the story moving forward. Think of it like a session of Dungeons & Dragons where the focus is less on killing monsters and more on acting out a scene.

The game has already been funded via Kickstarter, though more funding means more worlds for users to play in. So far, Storium is supporting worlds and settings like Bram Stoker's Dracula, a Red Dawn-like world where Russians invade the US, post-WW2 Los Angeles, and a near future where criminals and law enforcement alike alter their genes to become superhuman. There are no solid release windows or platforms given on the game's Kickstarter page, but it is advertised that players will be able to access Storium "with just your computer, tablet, or smartphone."

Update: Joystiq reached out to Storium creator Stephen Hood for more details, and he has responded. While backers who donate $10 or more gain instant access to the Storium beta, the public launch is expected in November. Storium is also browser-based instead of a standalone client, so any compatible browser, be it on your smartphone, tablet, PC or other device, should work.
[Image: Storium / Stephen Hood]

Magic 2015 deals in Xbox One, out in the summer


This summer, Magic 2015: Duels of the Planeswalkers brings the collectible card game series to Xbox One for the first time, but it looks like the game isn't coming to PlayStation platforms in the near future. Wizards of the Coast announced Magic 2015 for Xbox One, Xbox 360, Steam, iPad, Android and Kindle, with PS3 and PS4 conspicuously absent from the deck; previously editions have traditionally come to PS3 at launch. As for the summer due date, that's only specified for Xbox One, and Wizards of the Coast notes its releases may vary from platform to platform.

Talking of decks, you'll be able to build customized ones in Magic 2015, and Wizards of the Coast promises "more robust" deck-building features to boot. Meanwhile, the story pits players as the prey of primal hunter and generally deadly dude Garruk Wildspeaker.

Of course, we might be seeing Magic: The Gathering on bigger screens in the future, after 20th Century Fox's purchase of the series' screen rights earlier this year. We look forward to the inevitable video game based on the collectible card game based on the movie based on the collectible card game.
[Image: Wizards of the Coast]

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Harmonix announces 'rhythm-runner' Record Run for mobile

Harmonix announced the development of a new free-to-play game at PAX East in Boston today called Record Run. Described by the developer as a "rhythm-runner," the game is "coming soon" to as-yet-undetermined mobile platforms.

Record Run features gameplay that compares to Gaijin Games' Bit.Trip series, according to Harmonix head Alex Rigopulos. The game uses songs from players' mobile devices as the backdrop for its levels, which features a character running down a sidewalk, avoiding obstacles and collecting music records, all seen during Rigopulous' presentation. He noted that Harmonix has "lots of other irons in the fire on mobile" aside from Record Run.
[Image: Harmonix]

Humble Weekly Sale: Guacamelee, Surgeon Simulator, State of Decay



The Humble Weekly Sale features a lineup of PewDiePie-approved games, with sales helping out the Save the Children charity. Available for anything you want is Surgeon Simulator 2013, Guacamelee Gold Edition and QWOP for Android. Up for $6 or more is SpeedRunners on Early Access and Garry's Mod, at $10 or more unlock Probably Archery, and for $15 or more you'll receive State of Decay.

All games are on Steam, except for "QWOP for Android." That one's on – wait for it – Android.
[Image: Humble]

That Dragon, Cancer documentary follows a year of development, heartache



Thank You For Playing is a documentary about the development of That Dragon, Cancer, the low-poly adventure game from Ryan Green. The game tells the Green family's heart-wrenching story as their young son, Joel, battles terminal cancer. Joel died in March at age 5.

The documentary covers the past year of development, delving into tense family moments, following Joel to the hospital, and covering That Dragon, Cancer at shows such as PAX and E3. Thank You For Playing comes from veteran filmmakers David Osit and Malika Zouhali-Worrall.

Ryan Green posted about the documentary for the first time on his blog today:

"You wouldn't think it so, since our family has been so public and in the news about sharing the game, and we've been part of a web-based documentary before, but letting a film crew in to our personal, creative and professional lives was a little scary. We are not the producers of this film. It is independent of us. Before this project, we did not know David and Malika, but we decided It was important that people see the parts of our lives in-between the scenes of the game. Life happens in the middle and so does death. David and Malika were with our family the three days leading up to Joel's passing."

Thank You For Playing is currently in production, as is That Dragon, Cancer.
[Images: Osit and Zouhali-Worrall]

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