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EA Black Friday: Up to 75 percent off 300 games, DLC

Like GameStop, Walmart and Microsoft, EA's digital distribution service Origin will celebrate Black Friday with big discounts on a wide number of items.

Though very recent PC games like Dragon Age: Inquisition maintain their $60 launch prices, slightly older games like The Sims 4 and FIFA 15 are available at $40. Likewise discounted is Titanfall, which can be purchased for $15. The biggest discounts are seen on EA's classic games. The normally $15 Mass Effect is now available at $3.74 while Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 and SimCity 4 are each available for $10. A full rundown of the discounts can be found on Origin.

Though Origin's Black Friday sale is available until December 1, you should keep a close eye on the event once Black Friday rolls around. EA won't commit to anything just yet, but the Origin news feed suggests that even bigger discounts will come on November 28.
[Image: EA]

Activision issuing DMCA takedowns on Call of Duty exploit videos

Activision is issuing copyright strikes on YouTube videos that "promote cheating and unfair exploits" within its Call of Duty series, Eurogamer reports.

Gaming network Machinima warned its userbase in an e-mailed newsletter this week that videos showcasing glitches in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare are currently being targeted for DMCA takedowns, and affected accounts will receive copyright strikes. YouTube users who earn multiple copyright strikes risk having their accounts permanently disabled.

"Activision is being particularly vigilant about their Call of Duty videos lately; issuing strikes on videos showing glitches," Machinima's statement reads. "If you post videos highlighting these glitches, your channel may be liable to receive a copyright strike so please be careful."

Activision issued a response to Eurogamer claiming that it intends to curb cheating and unfair play within Advanced Warfare's multiplayer mode.

"We're excited that so many fans are having fun playing the game and posting videos of their gameplay," an Activision representative wrote. "We love watching the videos ourselves. Occasionally, some folks post videos that promote cheating and unfair exploits. As always, we keep an eye out for these videos - our level of video claims hasn't changed. We are appreciative of the community's support in helping to ensure that everyone has the best playing experience possible."

[Image: Activision]

Joystiq Streams: Humble Bundle giveaway extravaganza

Perhaps you heard: We put together a Humble Bundle! Joystiq and the merry Humble crew assembled a selection of delicious games and began selling them for a shockingly low price, with proceeds going to the developers, Humble, and the absolutely wonderful organization known as AbleGamers. (If you're unfamiliar with AbleGamers, we recently spotlighted their work here.) Some awesome games populate the bundle: Costume Quest 2, Slender: The Arrival, The Dream Machine, and Primal Carnage to name a few.

With two days left to pick up the bundle, we're celebrating the event by streaming a bunch of them from 2:30PM to 5:00PM EST on Joystiq.com/Twitch. Watching us play games is cool and all, but what do you get out of it? Free games! We'll be doling out free bundles as we stream so tune in to get in on it.

Joystiq.com/Twitch from 2:30PM to 5:00PM EST. Be there. Dig the streams? Follow us on Twitch for more.
[Images: Double Fine, Humble]

CCP slays Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines remake

CCP Games has halted a fan-developed remake of the classic PC RPG Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines, requesting an end to development and the removal of assets taken from the original game via an e-mailed cease and desist order.

The remake, codenamed Project Vaulderie, was to recreate Bloodlines in the Unity engine, patching up lingering issues from the original release and adding a multiplayer component. Bloodlines was originally rushed to retail in a notoriously buggy state in 2004 after an extended development period, and an active modding community worked to improve the game in the years afterward.

"We're very sad to report that we received a Cease & Desist e-mail from CCP Games, asking us to cease game development, remove any materials that might contain Vampire The Masquerade: Bloodlines, names, locations or related elements from the sites we control, and cease any further use of Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines property, and in a disappointment shared among our team we are complying with that request," Project Vaulderie's team lead said in a recent blog post.

The post continues: "We are avidly seeking a resolute course to continue working on a future game, but we cannot at this time discuss this publicly and with that I urge you to please be patient and hopeful that we will find a way."

[Image: CCP Games]

Tales from the Borderlands rollin', rollin', rollin' out today

The first episode of Telltale's Tales from the Borderlands hits Steam across the globe later today, as well as PS4 and PS3 in North America. Next up are the Xbox One and Xbox 360, with worldwide releases due tomorrow, November 26, and December 3 respectively. Last but not least, PS owners in Europe also join the episodic party on December 3.

As for prices, on PlayStations and Xboxen each individual episode is $5. On PSN there's the option to purchase all five episodes in a $20 season pass, while on Xbox Live you can get Episodes 2-5 in a $15 season pass upgrade. On Steam the asking price for the season is $25, which you can bring down to $22.49 with a pre-purchase. Finally, Telltale's previously said the first episode should hit iOS and Android before the end of the year.

To see the launch trailer in action, move 'em on and head 'em out past the break. Also, that title is not referencing Limp Bizkit - you guys are just the Durst.

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Expanded Dark Souls 2 coming to smite Xbox One, PS4 owners


You might have thought that buying into the new generation of consoles would protect you from the gleeful, maniacal punishment of the Dark Souls series, but you were wrong. Namco has revealed that a new edition of Dark Souls 2, subtitled Scholar of the First Sin, is headed to Xbox 360, PS3, PC and now, for the first time, Xbox One and PS4.

On all platforms – according to Namco – the expanded edition of the game packs some new features, including improved balance, new NPCs, an expanded story, and new item descriptions. These improvements will also be available to existing Dark Souls 2 owners via a free update. Meanwhile, the Xbox One, PS4 and DirectX 11 PC versions of the game will offer "enhanced graphics," with Namco explaining to Joystiq that this includes higher resolution textures and improved lighting effects, among other things. Furthermore, these versions of the game will increase the maximum number of online players.

Of course, it wouldn't be a proper re-release without packing in some DLC, and all versions of Scholar of the First Sin will include all three of Dark Souls 2's DLC episodes. Dark Souls 2: Scholar of the First Sin is set to arrive on April 7, 2015 – just after Bloodborne, developer From Software's newest game, hits the shelves.

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Marvel's Venom infects Zen Pinball games next month

Zen Studios announced a new table for its pinball games based on the popular villain from Marvel's Spider-Man universe, Venom. The table explores Venom's rivalry with Spider-Man as well as Carnage, the offspring of the dark Symbiote, hosted by the first of Venom's victims from the webbed superhero's comics, Eddie Brock.

As with Zen Studios' other tables, the add-on will launch for multiple Zen Pinball and Pinball FX games on December 10 and December 11. It will cost $2.99 (€2.99/£2.49) for Zen Pinball 2 and Pinball FX 2 players on PS4, PS3, Vita, PC, Mac, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and Wii U. Those playing Zen Pinball, Zen Pinball HD and Marvel Pinball on iOS and Android will need to pay $1.99 (€1.79/£1.49) to access the Venom table in those games.
[Image: Zen Studios]

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Free-to-play shooter Warface visits Siberia with a friend

Fans of Warface (not to be confused with Warcraft, Warframe, Faceball 2000 or these abominations) should invest in warm clothing for two, as the game's next setting is a cooperative mission in the snowy Altai Mountains of Siberia.

"The stunning new Co-op setting, Operation Cold Peak, will test experienced players to their limits as they target a secluded stronghold located high in Siberia's Altai Mountains," reads an official description from developer Crytek. "Teamwork will be key as players bid to crack Blackwood's icy grip and advance through three separate stages on their ascent. Along the way, they'll have to brave the elements as well as enemy fire, and stay on track when blizzards suddenly strike up to change the state of play."

According to Crytek, Operation Cold Peak will feature three new maps as well as new boss characters. Like all Warface updates, Operation Cold Peak will be available at no charge, though Crytek has yet to reveal when these new maps will debut. While you wait, have a look at the teaser beyond the break.
[Image: Crytek]

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Ron Gilbert's new 2D adventure game passes crowdfunding goal

Last week we brought you word of Thimbleweed Park, a new yet classically-styled 2D adventure game from Maniac Mansion designers Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick. At the time the duo were seeking $375,000 to fund the game's development - a goal they reached just this morning.

Anticipating the possibility of a massive outpouring of support, Ron Gilbert updated the Kickstarter page over the course of the weekend to outline stretch goals for Thimbleweed Park. If, in its remaining 24 days, the fundraiser reaches $425,000 the developers will have the game translated into German, Spanish, French and Italian. At $525,000, Thimbleweed Park will appear on iOS and Android devices. The big one, full voice acting for Thimbleweed Park, comes available at $625,000.

Thimbleweed Park will appear on PC, Mac and Linux platforms. No release date has yet been announced.
[Image: Disney/Ron Gilbert/Gary Winnick]

Batman glides into Arkham Knight gameplay trailer

Warner Bros. offered the first in a series of three gameplay trailers for Batman: Arkham Knight today, showing the caped superhero rescuing workers from a chemical plant. Found after the break, the video features a healthy dose of gliding and Batmobile action, as well as some good old-fashioned ass-kicking by the dark knight.

Batman: Arkham Knight will launch on June 2, 2015 for PS4, Xbox One and PC. The final installment in Rocksteady's Arkham trilogy was delayed this past June. The game is "five times larger," and is set one year after the events of Batman: Arkham City, the developer's 2011 entry in the series. With a little help from the developer, diligent players recently unearthed an Easter egg in Arkham City with a special message from Calendar Man.

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Game of Thrones' Steam page brings screens, prices, Dinklage

If you're hoping for Telltale's Game of Thrones to debut this month, you're probably out of luck. While the first episode of the six-part series is due before the end of this year, a new Steam listing pins it for December rather than November. Still, the Steam page does bear fruit in the form of official screens, a series price of $30, and 10 percent off pre-purchases.

So far Telltale has confirmed appearances from four stars of the TV show: Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister), Natalie Dormer (Margaery Tyrell), Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Snow) and Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister). For all the attention he received for his voice work in Destiny, deserved or otherwise, it'll be good to see Dinklage bringing one of his best characters to gaming. And hopefully, more of his best gifs (head below the break).

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Grand Theft Auto 5 becomes the UK's all-time bestseller

The new king of Britain is Grand Theft Auto 5, after it claimed the crown for the most units sold in the nation in the ever of ever. On the back of hitting PS4 and Xbox One, Rockstar's latest crime circus usurped the former rule of Call of Duty: Black Ops, according to data-bods Chart Track. While Chart Track didn't report specific sales figures, MCV claims GTA 5 was at "almost 4 million" units sold in the UK ahead of its arrival on the newest systems.

As per other re-releases, GTA 5 offers enhanced graphics on PS4 and Xbox One. In its case, however, there's also the undoubted showpiece of the new first-person camera.

"Rather than lowering the camera and shoving it in the chests of its three protagonists, GTA 5's first-person mode adds detailed animations that give the perspective a feeling more akin to simulation than a shooter," said Joystiq's Xav de Matos in our updated review.

GTA 5 isn't the only rock star in this week's UK charts, so head below the break to see how well Far Cry 4 and Dragon Age: Inquisition did, and just how badly Sonic Boom flopped. You'll also find the UK top ten and, as ever, the minimally-beloved customary music video.

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Evolve Medic Caira loves the smell of napalm and heals in the mornin'

Image Doctors in the real world may have goliath-sized tuition bills to pay off, but Medics in Evolve have it pretty rough too, what with the giant monsters and all. If you've wondered whether the Medic life is the life for you, here's a walk in the boots of Evolve's Caira. [Image: 2K Games]... Continue Reading

Pre-order Geometry Wars 3, get two extra levels

You don't have to worry about quantities of Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions depleting during this week's launch, but pre-ordering the $14.99 twin-stick shooter wouldn't hurt if you're looking for a couple extra levels.

As explained on Sierra's website, pre-orders placed on Xbox One consoles will earn the torus-shaped Blood Count and the cupe-shaped Titan Box, the latter of which is exclusive to Xbox. In place of pre-orders on the Xbox 360, the extra stages will be given to anyone that purchases the game before 11:59 PST on December 2.

For PlayStation fans, the exclusive Symbolic stage will spawn enemies in shapes matching the four shapes used for the DualShock's buttons, as well as the triangular Secret Eye that's seen in the above image. However, pre-orders on PlayStation Network will only be available in the Americas.

PC, Mac and Linux users that pre-order through Steam will receive Secret Eye and Blood Count, and there appears to be no region-based restrictions on that offer. You shouldn't run out of targets if you decide to wait things out however, as GW3: Dimensions will still launch with more than 50 levels for single player.
[Image: Activision]

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Combat-free MMO Wander coming to PS4


Wander is an unconventional, combat-less MMO that's currently in beta on PC and Linux and planned to reach PS4 in March 2015, as announced on the PlayStation Blog. Rather than the common hunt for loot and quests, Wander focuses on unguided exploration across a cluster of overgrown islands. Players can set out on their own to discover oddities, or work with those they cross paths with to piece together the area's history.

Adventurers begin as walking trees with no memory, but can find and take alternate forms like a winged griffon or the swimming-savvy azertash. While parsing through Wander's rainforest for hidden secrets might feel overwhelming, Siren-like songs will usher players toward secrets that they're close to.

While it seems expansive and mysterious, Writer and Character Designer Crystal Flinn explained that it's possible to get to the "end" of Wander's story. While a price for the PS4 version hasn't been offered, access to the PC and Linux beta is available for $25.
[Image: Wander]

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