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Valve’s handheld gaming device Steam Deck announced, starts shipping in December

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Valve has unveiled a new handheld device called Stem Deck and reservations are available for it now in select regions.

Previously known as SteamPal, which was probably the working name, Steam Deck is slated to start shipping in December.

For Steam Deck, Valve partnered with AMD to create the handheld’s custom APU, which is being called “Zen 2 + RDNA 2 powerhouse,” promising more than enough performance to run the latest triple-A games in a “very efficient power envelope.”

With the handheld, you can take your Steam library on the go just like you would with a PC or laptop.

It was also designed for extended play sessions with both thumbsticks and trackpads along with full-size controls positioned within reach. It even features a touch screen and Gyro controls.

There is also a dock that allows Steam Deck to connect to external displays, wired networking, USB peripherals, and power. You can also use a powered USB-C hub. The official dock will be sold separately. More information coming soon.

It comes in three versions: 64GB eMMC, 256GB NVMe SSD (faster), or 512GB NVMe SSD (fastest). If you’re looking for more space, you can augment your built-in storage with a microSD card and fill it up with even more games.

It features a 7″ touchscreen, an expandable I/O, Hi-Fi audio with built-in speakers, wireless Bluetooth, an onboard 40 watt-hour battery for several hours’ worth of playtime for most games. For lighter use cases like game streaming, smaller 2D games, or web browsing, you can expect to get a maximum battery life of approximately 7-8 hours.

Steam Deck is available to reserve now in select regions and will begin shipping in December 2021, and starts at $399.99.

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God of War actor will lend his voice to Black Panther in Marvel’s Avengers

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Actor Christopher Judge, who voiced Kratos in God of War (2018) will lend his voice to Black Panther in the upcoming Marvel’s Avengers expansion.

The Stargate actor will voice King T’Challa in the Marvel’s Avengers expansion The Black Panther: War for Wakanda.

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At first, Judge wasn’t interested in voicing the role due to the fact he didn’t “believe that anyone should ever do T’Challa again,” after the death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman.

“The actual talks proceeded and, basically, I wound up doing it because my mother and my children said if I didn’t do it, they would disown me,” he told Entertainment Weekly.

“To be quite honest, I was fearful of being compared to what Chadwick had so wonderfully done. The only way I could really wrap my head around it was to not even attempt a voice match, to let my performance stand on its own. I put all that into it and hopefully people like it.”

According to the EW article, we can expect the DLC to take place around five years after the events of A-Day which will have “ripple effects” in Wakanda, and it will see Black Panther defending the country from Klaw who seeks to steal Vibranium.

The content will add a new single-player campaign which will last around the 25 hours mark, and you can expect two adversaries and a “robust cast of Wakandans.” Locations such as like Shuri’s laboratory and the Wakandan War Room will be included along with new missions for the Drop Zone and Threat Sector.

You can expect the content to include the Wakandan Jungle Biome, new Klaw faction enemies, and much more.

Alongside the expansion this summer, you can expect new hero outfits, a power level cap increase, and a new outpost.

The expansion is coming to Marvel’s Avengers in August, but a specific release date has yet to be confirmed.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 Vespoid location: How to get Vespoid wing

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Scouring the vast world of Monster Hunter Stories 2 for Vespoid locations is a tricky one. Don’t expect to find them anytime early in your adventure.

You’ll need the Vespoid Wing item for some armor sets and layered armor as well. This means it’s well worth taking the time to find them, but really, the main Vespoid location only opens up toward the end of the game as the story reaches its climax.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 Vespoid location

Vespoids live on Hakolo Island in the Guardian Ratha Forest.

The first time you visit these woods, you’ll only find Bnahabra. No Vespoids buzz around the second time either.

It’s not until the third visit, as the game’s plot starts wrapping up, that Vespoids appear in the Ratha Forest.

You’ll know it’s the right time because the environment undergoes drastic changes before you head back to Hakolo and into the woods.

Prior to this point, don’t waste your time looking for Vespoid in Guardian Ratha Woods. They just won’t be there.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 Vespoid Wing

The Vespoid Wing is the only monster part Vespoids drop. Fortunately, the giant wasp is an easy monster to defeat.

Vespoids are weak against fire and blunt weapons. Essentially, they’re just big Bnahabra, so you shouldn’t run into too much trouble during these fights. Since layered armor requires you to first forge the original armor set, you’ll want to farm some extra Vespoid wings so you aren’t caught short.

If you do find you need some extra help in the endgame, it’s probably a good idea to scout some Rare Dens and change your Monstie roster.

Or we also have a list of the monster attack types and weaknesses in Monster Hunter Stories 2.

Make sure to focus on improving their genes and maximizing bonuses with gene bingo too. Save some Bottle Caps for the post-game, though. You’ll need them to find Elder Dragons and the Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2’s rarer high rank dens.

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How to get a Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2: Palamute Tickets, Expeditions, and eggs

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

The Monster Hunter Stories 2 Palamute update is live, but the big question remains: how do you get a Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2?

It takes a bit of work, and you won’t be hatching the hunter’s best friend until the post-game or close to it. However, it’s worth the wait. These aren’t your average Palamutes.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 Palamutes

Palamutes come in six varities, one for each of the game’s elements. The egg color indicates what element the Palamute will be, and unlike other monsters, the Palamute’s color changes depending on its element as well.

The Palamute has Jump and Ivy Climb as its Riding Actions, making them handy to keep on your team during post-game exploration.

How to get a Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2: Palamute Tickets

There are a couple of ways to get Palamute Tickets. After you’ve downloaded the new update, go to any village’s quest board and look for the five-star quest “Throw Me A Bone.”

Turn in the required number of Monster Bone+ materials to get a stack of Palamute Tickets. These come in normal, rare, and super rare varieties.

You can also exchange Bottle Caps for them at Melynx, though the cost is higher than the usual Expedition Ticket price.

How to get a Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2: Palamute Expeditions

Price aside, Palamute Tickets work the same as other Expedition Tickets. Pick co-op Expedition from the multiplayer menu (also accessed from a quest board) and choose the Explore Palamute Home quest.

These are eight-star quests, meaning you won’t have access to them before the post-game.

Once you’ve picked the Palamute Ticket, head to the target Rare Den and start exploring.

There’s a slight chance you can find Palamute Eggs in any of the den’s nests. The best bet is, as ever, the nest of the expedition’s target monster.

However, it is just a chance. Some players have reported completing several Palamute Expeditions and finding no Palamute eggs.

Some eggs could be rarer than others, but you can use stimulants on Palamutes during the Rite of Channeling just like with any other Monstie in Monster Hunter Stories 2.

The post How to get a Palamute in Monster Hunter Stories 2: Palamute Tickets, Expeditions, and eggs appeared first on VG247.

GTA Online: Los Santos Tuners update is coming next week

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

The next big update to GTA Online is coming next week.

On July 20, GTA Online: Los Santos Tuners will launch, and it introduces not only Tuner-based missions and races, but it also introduces the LS Car Meet which is a shared social space where you can mingle with other players to race, and show off your customized vehicles.

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To get started in the LS Car Meet, you’ll need to visit a graffitied warehouse on the edge of town in Cypress Flats. You will have to look for it though, so if you listen for the sound of engines revving, or look for the makeshift finish line on the road outside, you will find it.

For starters, you’ll unlock a new Reputation progression with new benefits unlocking after each Level. Plus, you’ll get access to the Test Track, which is a large underground space inside the Car Meet warehouse where you others can drive and race vehicles without the police getting involved. You can also sample new Test Rides in the Test Track.

Members will also get to compete in rotating Prize Ride Challenges to win a special Prize Ride and get access to a range of specialty shops and features — including the Merch Shop, Tattoo Shop, and the Modding Area, where you can show off your customization to other players in real-time as you work on your stance build. Higher-level Members can also create a Private Takeover complete with customizable lighting and banner colors to decorate the Car Meet space.

Los Santos Tuners also introduces new races inside and outside the Car Meet, each with its own Leaderboards. On the Test Track, you can participate in competitions like Head-to-Head and Scramble where up to four players race to collect 20 checkpoints. There are also Time Trials around the Test Track, and up to 30 players will share the track space but contact will be disabled while competing. Members of the club can also go into Private Test Tracks solo. Off the Test Track and throughout the city, there are also new race series for members: Street Race Series and Pursuit Series.

The Pursuit Series offers a more open-ended experience, with checkpoints placed throughout the map to encourage creative routes, but be on the lookout for the police. There’s also Sprint which is a point-to-point challenge in Freemode with up to three other drivers where you will race from the LS Car Meet to various locations and back.

Reputation can also be earned by participating in and winning races, daily login bonuses, using the Test Track, and even just chilling out with others at the Car Meet.

Earning Reputation will give you rewards such as the ability to unlock access to various clothing options, new car customization options, Trade Prices on certain vehicles, access to new Race modes, and the ability to hold your own private Car Meet.

Of course, the update will also come with new cars These will range from imported tuner cars from Annis, Dinka, Ubermacht, and even muscle cars. There will be 17 new cars in total over the course of the summer, with 10 coming at launch.

Also, when GTA Online is released on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S later this year, select vehicles will be upgradable with all new speed improvements and more. These special upgrades will be available only on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S versions of the game. More details on this will be shared in the future.

Until July 20 when the update launches, playing GTA Online will give you the opportunity to earn some special rewards. Just “Meet Up” by playing the game anytime between now and the release of Los Santos Tuners to get the Los Santos Customs Tee, and participate in any Impromptu Race to receive the Los Santos Tour Jacket. And finally, stealing and successfully selling a vehicle to LS Customs in Freemode will also earn you the Los Santos Customs Coveralls. You can claim your rewards by playing Los Santos Tuners on or after July 20. Your items will land in your Wardrobe 72 hours after logging in after July 23.

The post GTA Online: Los Santos Tuners update is coming next week appeared first on VG247.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 Shakalaka material: Where to find Shakalaka

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

In Monster Hunter Stories 2, Shakalaka material is a vital ingredient in crafting Zinogre armor. But the real task, tracking down Shakalaka locations, is much more difficult to accomplish.

The wee monsters cloak themselves and are almost impossible to see. Once you do find them, however, it’s easy to get what you need and then some.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 Shakalaka location

Shakalaka live in the Terga region, specifically in the Volcanic Gates and Lake of Flames areas and in Monster Dens.

The tricky thing about finding them is actually, well… finding them. Shakalaka cloak themselves and blend in with the environment.

Your best bet for finding a Shakalaka is using a Monstie with the Monster Search Riding Action.

Unless you’ve supercharged your Yian Kut-Ku with incredible genes, you’d want to opt for Zamtrios, Nerscylla, or Crimson Qurupeco at this point in the game.

There’s no shortage of Shakalaka once you’ve found them, as they tend to roam in packs. They’re weak to blunt and piercing attacks and are easy to defeat, so Shakalaka material farming should be easy.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 Shakalaka material

Shakalaka could drop a few things. The only Shakalaka material you can use in forging is the Shakalaka Treasure. You’ll need this to make Zinogre Armor, which is some of the better armor you can get until the post-game content.

You might want to hold off on challenging Royal Zinogre until later, unless you just want a difficult fight or a small chance to get a Zinogre earlier.

Even if you win and receive Zinogre materials, you can’t forge Zinogre armor until you get Shakalaka material.

What you can do, however, is prepare for the Monster Hunter Stories 2 endgame challenges by searching for the Barrel Felyne. While you’re at it, track down some rare monsters to give you a chance against the Elder Dragons in the post-game.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP farming: How to get EXP fast

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Raising Monsties is hard work, but Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP farming doesn’t have to be.

For it’s credit, Stories 2 gives you plenty of ways to farm EXP – some of which don’t even require your direct involvement. To steer you in the right direction, we’ve outlined a few of the best ways to get Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP, fast.

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP Farming: Subquests

Completing subquests earns you a hefty amount of experience points. All active Monsties in your party share these points, so this is a great way to quickly give a few levels to brand-new party members. So make sure you have at least one new Monstie with you when reporting quests.

Most subquests take little time to finish or involve materials you’ll gather while progressing in main quest.

Some are a bit more convoluted, including the X Marks the Spot quest and the Little Ones Lost quest, but the rewards are worthwhile.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP Farming: Monstie Expeditions

Stories 2 has several Expedition types, but the ones you’ll focus on for farming EXP are Monstie Expeditions. Monstie Expeditions unlock during the Loloska storyline. But unlike regular Expeditions and quests, these don’t require Expedition Tickets.

Speak with the Stable Paw in any village and choose “Monstie Expedition.” Choose the location you want from the available areas, then for EXP farming, pick “EXP Enthusiast” to maximize the experience points earned.

Then just choose your Monsties, and off they go. Monstie Expeditions take a set amount of time spent in the game, and that time only passes while the game is on.

How to unlock more Monstie Expedition slots

As the game progresses, Melynx will stock three new ticket types:

  • Expedition+
  • Silver Expedition+
  • Gold Expedition+

These all increase the number of Monstie Expedition slots available. Like everything else Melynx sells, these tickets cost Bottle Caps.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP Farming: Unique Monsters

Another, more tedious, option is finding Barrel Felynes. We’ve explained how to do that in our Barrel Felyne guide, but just be aware these unique monsters are tough to find. You’ll get plenty of EXP from “defeating” them, but Monstie Expeditions are the best way to get EXP fast in Monster Hunter Stories 2.

Whatever your method of Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP farming, make sure you keep up with your Monstie levels. The main game might not be too gruelling, but the post game has super rare dens in store, including Elder Dragons.

The post Monster Hunter Stories 2 EXP farming: How to get EXP fast appeared first on VG247.

Resident Evil Re: Verse delayed into 2022

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Resident Evil Re: Verse has seen another delay, and this time it has been pushed all the way into 2022.

According to Capcom, the reason for the Resident Evil Re: Verse delay is so that the team can “continue working to deliver a smooth gameplay experience.”

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Updated launch details will be shared at a later time.

For players who purchased a physical version of Resident Evil Village, Capcom recommends that you keep track of the included Re: Verse download code and add it to your account now so that you are ready to play when the game launches next year.

In case you are unfamiliar with the game, in it, six players engage in deathmatches that allow them to mutate into various Resident Evil monsters in order to win. You play as or against many of the series’ heroes, villains, and monsters. In the game, there’s Claire Redfield, Leon, Ada, Jill, Hunk, and Chris.

You can play in four to six-person matches and when your character is taken out, your character’s body will transform into a powerful bioweapon that can be used against other players. You can also pick up multiple Virus Capsules to transform into even stronger bioweapons.

Back in June, a July release window was provided for the multiplayer shooter free with every copy of Resident Evil Village, which itself was a delay as it was originally set to be released alongside Resident Evil Village in May.


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As the GPU supply crisis eases it’s budget PC gamers who could suffer Nvidia RTX 3080 and RTX 3090

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Updated July 15 with extra comments from Ted Pollack, senior analyst at John Peddie Research.

High-end PC gaming is going to be in rude health as it recovers from the supply problems that have beset our hobby over the last 18 months. There is a certain note of optimism in the latest PC gaming hardware report from noted analyst firm, Jon Peddie Research, hailing this recovery as something to be celebrated.

And yes, the prospect of actually being able to pick up a new high-end graphics card will undoubtedly be a welcome one for many a silicon-starved PC gamer. JPR is predicting steady growth for the high-end hardware market to a high of $45 billion in 2024 from a starting point of a little over $20 billion in 2020.

Hooray, then. The drought will soon be over and we can all be content that the graphics card of our dreams will only ever be a click away and not at the end of a stream of bots and a massively inflated sticker price on ebay.

(Image credit: Jon Peddie Research)

Except there is also a heavy note of warning in the introduction to this report too, noting about the supply problems that:

"Gamers with average budgets could not always get what they needed, and new entrants sometimes put off, or even worse, abandoned the platform or hobby adoption. New entrants are very important to the long-term health of any gaming platform. A stark warning to hardware companies in the PC Gaming space that long-term growth is dependent on having products available and priced within reach of mass-market consumers."

And modern high-end GPUs most certainly aren't priced within reach of the vast majority of us.

If you're trying to find a mid-range graphics card you're out of luck right now. As companies fight to get a semblance of stock on the shelves they're focusing on the high-margin, high-end cards, because they know those will sell. And because, y'know, capitalism.

Almost every day on r/nvidia there's another shot of shelves in Micro Center or Best Buy filled with either GeForce RTX 3080 Ti or GeForce RTX 3090 cards, neither of which you could call 'within reach' in anything but a physical sense.

This might not just be a short term situation either. Head honcho of JPR, Jon Peddie himself, stated that, because "High-End graphics cards (Add-In Boards) maintain MSRP well and can be sold as Mid-Range products for years after production. This may encourage manufacturers to aggressively stock High-End inventory levels to prevent what we saw happen since COVID-19 lockdowns were initiated."

Which could be all kinds of concerning for those of us who can't afford to spend $700+ on a new GPU and have come to rely on mainstream heroes like the AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT or GeForce GTX 1650 Super for our gaming rigs.

Traditionally those sorts of sub-$200 graphics cards have been the volume plays for manufacturers, the ones made in greater numbers because they always sold in greater numbers too. But if manufacturers start hedging their bets on future supply issues by overstocking high-end GPUs instead, budget PC gamers are going to be left out in the cold.

Extra comments from JPR

However Ted Pollak, the author of the report, elaborated on his thoughts to us, stating that JPR is predicting "additive stocking of inventory at the high-end… not at the expense of the mid-range segment."

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(Image credit: Future)

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Maybe manufacturers will aggressively stock high-end graphics cards as well as the more affordable GPUs, but if the current stock shortage has taught us anything it's that if there are only high-end options available, that's what gets bought. Those would be dangerous learnings however, and potentially ruinous ones for the hobby if manufacturers took that short term effect as a permanent state of affairs.

But it also feels like something that's coming from the top down. Where are the RTX 3050 or RX 6600 cards from Nvidia and AMD, for example? When you have a finite number of GPUs you can manufacture with Samsung and TSMC respectively—and all the expensive, high-margin ones you make are selling out—you're not going to take a chunk out of that supply to instead make the same number of cheaper cards.

Pollak reiterated Peddie's statement that "the high-end cards, if they don't sell, can be sold as mid-range cards a year or more later. This will buffer things a bit. It may affect the margin of the company a little on the GPU part of their business, but if they can't supply all the parts needed in a crunch then their whole business margin is in trouble."

Which does make sense from a long-term viewpoint. But it bears remembering what happened the last time there was a GPU shortage and Nvidia and AMD boosted the supply of cards to compensate. Both were left holding a whole lot of unwanted GPUs when the crypto demand tailed off, and that pushed back subsequent generations quite a way while they tried to drive down stock levels.

Whether the manufacturers will be willing to hold on to extra high-end stock beyond the launch of the next generation GPUs remains to be seen. Certainly that wasn't the approach the last time around. 

But times are different now; precisely how different I guess we'll see when the true mainstream GPUs from this generation do launch. If there is ample stock of those alongside high-end cards we'll know that manufacturers are willing to take the potential hit.

In the end though, when the supply shortage is over, it's still going to take a while for the industry to normalise to the benefit of PC gamers with limited budgets. Well, fingers crossed it does eventually normalise anyway.

How to watch the Elgato ‘future of content creation’ stream today: new streaming gear incoming Elgato giveaway box with a large Elgato logo

Posted on July 15, 2021 by

Streaming hardware company, Elgato, wants to show you "the future of content creation" during a live stream later today. The event may well be worth checking out, too, especially if you're a streamer yourself. The company's many influencer pals have been busy teasing what appears to be a new product ready to drop during the stream.

The stream kicks off today, July 15, at 12:00 pm PDT / 3:00 pm EDT / 8:00 pm BST / 9:00 pm CEST. You can head over to the Elgato Twitch channel, or check back for the embedded stream closer to the show start.

What could Elgato's exciting new product be? We can't tell you, but there have been quite a few hints at something webcam-shaped from the company by its many partners. From the super secret box itself to nearly spitting it out in the replies on Twitter:

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