Tech & Gaming
PC Gamer (US Edition)

PC Gamer (US Edition) February 2018

PC Gamer brings you in-depth previews, exclusive feature stories, and the most hard-hitting reviews every month in the world’s best-selling PC games magazine! Every month you’ll get the inside scoop on the most exciting games in every genre from first-person shooters to MMORPGs and cutting-edge games from independent developers, along with detailed strategy guides, how-tos, and the latest news on mods and PC gaming hardware from the best-known authorities in PC gaming. PC Gamer helps you get the most out of the most powerful gaming platform in the world.

United States
Future Publishing Limited US
Read More
SPECIAL: Subscribe and get 1 year of FREE back issues! Free issues will be served within 72 hours after purchase
13 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
back in time

The PC Gamer view of the world After years of pressure, Blizzard has announced that it will be making official servers for World of Warcraft as it first existed at launch in 2004. Called World of Warcraft Classic, the teaser shown at Blizzcon 2017 sent the crowd into a frenzy. I sat down with Blizzard vice president and executive producer J. Allen Brack to get more details, starting with “why now?” “This is something that we have continued to hear from current players, from former players, from people who work on World of Warcraft, even people working at Blizzard who are like, ‘Hey, you should find a way,’” Brack says. The method isn’t as simple as the emulation jobs that private Warcraft servers have used. Initially, the problem was that Blizzard couldn’t justify…

4 min.
balancing bedlam

Balancing is a vague and contentious term for a vital game development process. As Lemma developer Evan Todd puts it, “balancing is the process of tweaking mechanics, and especially numbers, to reveal what a game really wants to be.” It’s revealing how Evan focuses on the numbers in this process. As glamorous as it might seem to be a game designer, determining what elements of a game are tweaked and how, many of these decisions come down to changing a set of values in a spreadsheet. Yik-Sian Seow, developer of turn-based roguelike Steam Marines, defined balancing as, “making sure that out of the tools you give to the player, all are viable and none are too out of step in terms of effective power level.” The first thing that goal requires…

1 min.
what needs balancing?

1 ROLE PLAYING GAMES Including everything from wildly varying builds to extensive economy simulations, RPGs are one of the most intensive genres to balance—and the most likely to have something slip through the cracks. 2 MULTIPLAYER SHOOTERS How fast are players? Whats the DPS of each weapon? How do variable connections affect things? When you throw in characters with asymmetric abilities, balancing a multiplayer game is more complex than ever. 3 DIGITAL BOARD GAMES Many digital board games streamline rulesets players would otherwise find complicated or tedious. Balancing is critical, here. Developers want players to focus on the experience they’re having, not a rulebook. 4 ALL OF THE GAMES, BASICALLY Every game you can imagine has been balanced somehow—including narrative projects, which consider pacing, how the player interacts with things, and how these affect the nature of…

7 min.
world of war craft: battle for azeroth

World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is coming in 2018. Set on high seas full of trolls, pirates, and troll pirates, the expansion renews the focus on the conflict that started everything: The monstrous Horde duking it out with the noble Alliance. The expansion will offer two new continents and a level cap of 120, several new races to unlock, ten new dungeons, and exciting new activities, like the real-time strategy-inspired Warfronts. At the center of Battle for Azeroth is the raging conflict between the two factions at the heart of World of Warcraft. With the Legion defeated and the external threat to Azeroth now gone, the Horde and Alliance are turning on each other and seeking new allies to bolster their ranks. Capital cities like Teldrassil and the Undercity are…

2 min.
genesis alpha one

Genesis Alpha One is one of the most unhelpfully videogame-y names I’ve heard in a long time. It basically translates as ‘First First First’, but actually refers to a ship-constructing and basebuilding space survival first-person shooter by developers whose previous experience includes Hitman: Blood Money and Spec Ops: The Line. FIRST LOOK You are tasked with commanding a spaceship full of clones as you seek out a planet upon which to rebuild civilization. You aren’t going to find a Goldilocks spot, so instead you must seek out DNA samples to help you fiddle with your clones’ genetic makeup, breeding them to be able to survive a hostile landscape. That’s easier said than done, so you’ll spend the game running through collection and expansion activities, as well as building up your spaceship’s facilities. These…

2 min.
boy friend dungeon

NEED TO KNOW RELEASE 2019 DEVELOPER Kitfox Games PUBLISHER None yet LINK www.boyfrienddungeon.com Swords are sexy. Swords are dependable. Swords are familiar and comforting.” There may be some of you who don’t agree with the words of Tanya X Short, self-described ‘captain’ of Kitfox Games, but you can’t deny that the team behind Moonhunters and The Shrouded Isle is making a damn good argument for the ‘sexy’ part with its upcoming game, Boyfriend Dungeon. FIRST LOOK This is the latest in a string of niche dating sims over the past few years: Hatoful Boyfriend’s pigeon loving, My Horse Prince’s take on centaurs, Dream Daddy, which has you dating dads—though a bit of fooling around with a father isn’t that weird when the alternatives are flying rats and horses with anime boy faces. Boyfriend Dungeon is a romance game about dating swords. Not…