battlefield-1Today, all players that own Battlefield 1 can jump into Rupture for free, which is a map featured in Battlefield 1: They Shall Not Pass, set during the Second Battle of the Marne and characterized by its poppies growing over rusty wrecks. In addition, the next few months will bring even more free content to all Battlefield 1 players including Soissons in May, also from Battlefield 1: They Shall Not Pass, to tackle one of the biggest tank assaults of World War I.

In June, bit-sized epicness is coming to Battlefield 1 in a new mode, Shock Operations. The mode supports 40 players and sees attackers and defenders battling over sectors like in fan-favorite Operations mode, but with the action focused to one single map – ideal for those that don’t have time for a full Operations match. Shock Operations will be available on five maps: Giant’s Shadow, Prise de Tahure, Lupkow Pass, Zeebrugge, and River Somme. Most of these maps are normally only available to owners of Battlefield 1 Premium Pass or standalone expansion packs. However, base game owners will be able to access them too when playing Shock Operations.

Check out the Battlefield 1 blog to stay up to date on what’s to come to Battlefield 1 in the coming months.

call-of-duty-wwiiStarting today, Call of Duty: WWII players will have an additional ally on their side with the Call of Duty Alexa Skill. Created by Activision and available today in Beta, the Call of Duty Alexa Skill features an array of support options, including personalized player recommendations, updates on in-game achievements and the ability to stay connected with and compare your play with friends. Did you just play a match of Call of Duty: WWII and want to know how you did, as well as how to improve your chances next time? Ask Alexa how to improve your skills, and you’ll get a personalized recommendation ready for your next match. Want to know if your friends are online and playing Call of Duty: WWII? Just ask Alexa. The skill supports all platforms of Call of Duty: WWII and is available free of charge, through the Alexa companion app.

The Call of Duty Alexa Skill employs AI and machine learning to create personalized recommendations, including specific loadouts, play styles, maps, modes, perks and divisions for each player. Using cluster analysis, the machine learning model analyzes more than 20 factors, including accuracy, movement, engagement distance, K/D, shots, score per minute, time played and relationships to other players to make personalized recommendations for each player. The Skill then employs natural language generation to create personalized responses to 2,500 questions about the game and an individual’s performance. Using a soldier-like voice, the Skill can deliver 250,000 distinct responses that incorporate real-time statistics, status and recommendations from the game.

The Call of Duty Alexa Skill gives every player a personal Call of Duty coach for the first time, using AI and machine learning to analyze how you play and providing tips on how to improve your gameplay based on your individual strengths, weaknesses and play style,” said Tim Ellis, Chief Marketing Officer of Activision. “We know that people play more Call of Duty as their skills improve and the more often they play with their friends. The Call of Duty Alexa Skill is designed to help players improve their Call of Duty skills, connect more easily with their friends and get to the fun faster in Call of Duty: WWII.

The Call of Duty Alexa Skill can be used during a match, in between matches or away from the game. It serves to not only answer questions about Call of Duty: WWII matches, but also to provide insights with personalized responses, automated insights and real-time play analysis regarding Call of Duty’s blockbuster most recent release. The Skill also provides players with a complete onboarding experience for Call of Duty: WWII, providing key background details and mission objectives, as well as analysis on how to improve their skills. Gamers can also use the Skill to find out who from their friend group is also playing Call of Duty: WWII, or simply hear how they stack up against their friends.

There are 15 categories of features available in the Call of Duty Alexa Skill for Call of Duty: WWII, including:

  • Personalized recommendations to improve your skills
  • Match summaries, and highlights of your recent gameplay
  • Social features, including whether friends are currently playing, and comparing your stats and achievements to theirs
  • Contract and order status, both during and after a match, so that you see how close you are to completing the contract and earning a reward
  • Latest in-game news, including events and game updates
  • Game and features descriptions

For more information on the Call of Duty Alexa Skill Beta, please visit www.callofduty.com/alexa.

amd-2nd-gen-ryzenAMD today announced the global availability of its 2nd Generation Ryzen Desktop processors, starting with four models optimized for gamers, creators, and hardware enthusiasts: Ryzen 7 2700X, Ryzen 7 2700, Ryzen 5 2600X, and Ryzen 5 2600 processors. Building on the original award-winning 2017 “Zen” architecture, the 2nd Gen Ryzen processors combine the improved “Zen+” core with other major performance, feature, and platform advancements. We have collected a number of reviews on AMD’s new 2nd Gen Ryzen Desktop CPU’s, and you can read them via the links provided below.

Hardware Processors | Donster | |

newhardware-iconCheck out these latest hardware announcements for today from around the web. Also included are some hardware news bits, and on some days, a few rumors tossed in for good measure. Click on the links below to read the official press release, visit the products web page, or to an independent news source.

Hardware | Donster | |

call-of-duty-wwiiThe Call of Duty: WWII Blitzkrieg Community Event is now underway on PS4, Xbox One, and PC!

The enemy is knocking on the door in Call of Duty: WWII, so Command has issued new Orders: gather your squad, hit the frontlines, and earn some extra rewards for your effort.

Captain Butcher is back to help, and he has six brand new weapons to use in the firefights of Ground War, a new limited-time 9-on-9 game mode. The fighting has even reached HQ – starting April 17, the HQ is a free playable map for Prop Hunt, Gun Game, and Free-For-All modes. The Blitzkrieg Event is available until Tuesday, May 8.

Watch the Official Call of Duty: WWII – Blitzkrieg Community Event Trailer HERE.

Ground War

The Ground War multiplayer game mode is the biggest battle available in Call of Duty: WWII. With 9-on-9 matches across Team Deathmatch, Kill Confirmed, Domination and War, the stakes are bigger, and there is more danger around every corner. Ground War is available now, and visit the Blitzkrieg page to learn how to earn 2XP for playing it.

You’ll find modes like Team Deathmatch, Domination, and Kill Confirmed in Ground War throughout Blitzkrieg, so keep an eye on the Featured Tab in the Public Match lobby and get ready to make new friends!

Play Party Games in HQ

Are you a Prop Hunt player? Do you run the gamut in Gun Game? If so, you’ll want to hear this: the HQ is now a free playable map for Party Games in Call of Duty: WWII. Gather your squad and test your skills in Prop Hunt, Gun Game, and Free-For-All on this new playable map. The HQ map is a free permanent addition to Call of Duty: WWII, so enjoy!

Six New Weapons

Captain Butcher made sure to bring the firepower to push back the Axis army. Starting on April 17, you can earn the Type 5, ITRA Burst, and M2 Carbine rifles, the Type 38 Sniper, the Sterling SMG, and the Baseball Bat melee weapon. Reload your arsenal with these six new weapons and experiment with them alongside the recently overhauled Divisions.

Community Challenge

The Blitzkrieg Community Challenge features new Orders from Major Howard, Contracts from Captain Butcher, as well as brand new Nazi Zombies Orders and Contracts. Knock ‘em out and you’ll unlock free rewards such as a helmet, a weapon charm, and even an exclusive “Rosie II” Grease Gun variant.

Starting on April 20, you will need to band together with your fellow players to push towards an epic goal – completing 75 million Orders and Contracts collectively in Multiplayer! But fear not, because you’ll gain rewards at each step along the way. Work your way up through the tiers with the rest of your Allies, and push towards the goal!

2XP Opportunities

The Blitzkrieg Event will offer 2XP playlists every week Multiplayer and at different intervals in Nazi Zombies. Check out the Blitzkrieg page for the full schedule of when and where you can get Double Soldier, Weapon and Divisions XP, and mark your calendar accordingly.

The enemy will retreat from Headquarters on May 8, so log on to Call of Duty: WWII now to take part in The Blitzkrieg Event and we’ll see you in Headquarters!

Four New & Unique Vehicles Are Obtainable In This Year’s In-game-Event Series, Plus Plenty of Decals, Decorations And More

Gaijin Entertainment’s vehicular combat MMO War Thunder has launched the “Chronicles of World War II”, a series of in-game events recreating some of the most important battles of World War II. Between mid-April and Victory Day in May, players can take part in more than 40 of the biggest military clashes of the 20th century and earn four new and unique premium vehicles in the process. Available are the armored car T18E2 for the United States, the Lorraine 155 MLE.50 tank destroyer for France, the Whirlwind P.9 attacker for Great Britain and the TANDEM-MAI multipurpose fighter for the USSR. Apart from the exclusive vehicles, event participants can earn dozens of dedicated decals and decorations, which all will be available only during this year’s series.

All in-game events of the series are held in their historical chronological order, beginning with the German invasion of the USSR in 1941 until the final Battle for Berlin in 1945. Pilots and tankers will clash on the hot deserts of North Africa, fight along the narrow streets of European cities and hunt each other in the skies above the Pacific Ocean. Every day, six new events are available in all difficulty settings, through which participants can earn the “Chronicle Awards” necessary for unlocking the aforementioned content.

In addition to the exclusive rewards obtainable in the events, special bonuses including premium vehicles are also available by fulfilling tasks in War Thunder’s regular random battles and earning “Parts” in the process. With those, players can obtain decorative items and decals that were previously available only in specials and later also use them to unlock the premium lend-lease Matilda Mk. II infantry tank for the USSR and premium PV-2D Harpoon bomber for the USA. The number of tasks performed by all players of War Thunder is tracked on the game’s official website, and whenever it reaches a certain milestone, in-game participants receive awards and, ultimately, the blueprints to assemble both the tank and bomber for free.

More information about the events and obtainable awards, including historical and technical information on the unique premium vehicles, can be found on the official War Thunder website HERE.

MMORPGs War Thunder | Donster | |

strategic-command-classic-ww2A great classic game returns, as Strategic Command Classic: WWII is now available!

The Matrix version is the Gold Edition of the Original Strategic Command: Blitzkrieg and Weapons and Warfare combined. It also Patton Drives East expansion and Strategic Command Pacific Theatre.

From the product page:

Combining the ease of play, accessibility and addicting gameplay, Strategic Command Classic: World War II adds tons of features in a single game.

Weapons and Warfare (the expanded & enhanced version of the original Blitzkrieg)

Rewrite history with 6 full length, open ended campaigns beginning at key stages of World War II. Begin the war from the historical invasion of Poland in 1939, Denmark and Norway in 1940, Russia in 1941, Stalingrad in 1942, the invasion of Sicily by the Allies in 1943 or the epic beach landings of D-Day in 1944.

Pacific

Players will be able to wage war across the massive expanse of the Pacific Ocean. From British occupied India, Tibet, Nepal and China in the West to Pearl Harbor and the West Coast of the US and Canada. WWII Pacific Theatre features a very large map, at 198×82 tiles in size.

Patton Drives East

Patton Drives East allows players to explore the historically possible what ifs of WWII such as:

  • What if the Western Allies and the Soviet Union went to war after defeating the Axis?
  • Could America liberate a Europe subjugated by the Axis?
  • What if the Western Allies had accepted a surrender from Germany and together they would fight against the USSR?”

Important!

This is not a new game. We are taking over from Battlefront as the publisher of this game.

The Gold Edition allow players to play:

  • Blitzkrieg + Weapons and Warfare
  • Pacific Theatre
  • Patton Drives East

To purchase Strategic Command Classic: WWII  and get more game information, visit the official webpage.

call-of-duty-black-ops-4By Steven @ GamingIntel

Activision including Black Ops 4 Battle Royale Mode in the next Call of Duty title seems a strong likelihood to us. Back in March we reported it would not be a surprise to see Battle Royale introduced, this was for many reasons.

WHY BLACK OPS 4 BATTLE ROYALE MAKES SENSE

  • The success of Fortnite and PUBG
  • Huge revenue generated in Fortnite from Microtransactions
  • Battle Royale concept is still fresh and in-demand
  • Call of Duty is stagnating as a franchise

A recent report from Polygon states “Black Ops 4 won’t have traditional single-player campaign, will instead focus on Multiplayer and Zombies”. On top of this Charlie INTEL recently tweeted a report stating “a tipster also informed CI that Raven Software has reportedly been tasked with adding a Battle Royale mode to Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 to fill the content gap of no campaign”.

This sounds to be the making of an extremely shrewd business decision by Activision on multiple levels. I’m sure a previous Activision meeting went along the lines of “Why include a campaign which takes up a considerable portion of the budget and development time, when you can include a new hyped game mode which has the potential to generate huge amounts through micro-transactions”. This ties in with our earlier article where a report suggested “Activision is keenly aware of how other publishers have benefited from releasing titles in the popular Battle Royale genre”.

With no single player campaign, this also allows Activision to use the established and popular ‘Black Ops’ brand without having to tie it into the storyline. The setting and mechanics do not have to corroborate with the timeline of Black Ops 3, which is important given the general dislike of boost jumps and Exo Suits. Of course we expect Easter Eggs and references back to the previous series but this is much less of an undertaking than fitting in a whole new storyline.

Read on…

ecs-z370-lightsaber-moboBy Morry Teitelman @ PC Perspective

The ECS Z370 Lightsaber motherboard is the latest offering in ECS’ L337 product line, offering support for the Intel Z370 chipset. Similar to previous iterations of the Lightsaber board, the Z370-Lightsaber builds on the those board by adding dual-m.2 slot support, enhanced power support, as well as support for the latest Intel Coffee Lake-based processors. With an MSRP of $199, ECS priced the Z370 Lightsaber to be price-competitive with other mid-tier Z370-based offerings.

Read the Review Here

Hardware Motherboards | Donster | |

nzxt-kraken-x72-aioBy Hilbert Hagedoorn @ Guru3D

NZXT super-sized their Kraken series liquid coolers, meet the x72 for cases with 360 mm radiator mounts. This new cooler is compatible with CAM software. This allows you to program, customize and monitor this all-in-one liquid cooling solution for your processor. Armed with three 120mm PWM fans and a nice radiator to go with it, the performance is really good, next to being extremely silent, NZXT probably has got the best-LED lighting system implementation in the industry as well.

Read the Review Here

 

Hardware System Cooling | Donster | |