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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/20/2019 in Posts

  1. 3 points
    The PC gaming community landscape has changed dramatically over the years. In my youth in the late 90s, PC gamers flocked around IRC and various web forums around the world. I was in a Quake 2 ‘clan’ that played in a league organised in one such forum (BarrysWorld, RIP). In modern times, PC gamers have migrated from the traditional forum to places like /r/pcgaming and Discord. Entire communities have formed around individuals that who stream and commentate on Twitch and YouTube. Gone are the days of the dedicated server community. I am fascinated by how gaming communities form and how they have changed over time. It’s a shame that there doesn’t seem to be a proper history of PC gaming communities (perhaps that’ll be another post..). However it strikes me that there isn’t even a contemporary ‘guide’ to what the current PC gaming community landscape looks like right now, which is why I’ve put together this little article. When you Google for ‘best PC gaming communities’ you get this rather paltry PC Gamer article which is barely representative of the PC gaming community. I’d like to attempt something more comprehensive. Another thing to note is that reddit has entirely dominated the PC gaming ‘forum’ concept in the English speaking world. As of right now /r/pcgaming has over 1.5 million subscribers. Other niche subreddits also exist such as /r/battlestations /r/mechanicalkeyboards /r/ultrawidemasterrace - these would have been very niche communities in the past, but by virtue of being on reddit, they probably account for some of the most visited PC gaming community sites on the internet. I am not going to include any subreddits on the list as they are so popular they could easily make a list all on their own. In this article I am also not going to attach the forum juggernaut - Steam Discussions - which has a subform for every single Steam game, is clearly the de facto place to to post discussion and technical support. For example when Metro Exodus was released exclusively on the Epic Game Store (which didn't have its own forum), gamers used the Steam Discussion forum to discuss technical problems with that platform (or to moan!). Similar to Steam Discussions, GOG forums where the most active discussion about games still take place. However although these are amazing resources, I would like to draw our attention to smaller PC gaming communities. What excites me the most about writing this article is the comments that will inevitably come up where readers will reply with new and exciting PC gaming communities that we have never heard of. My plan is to later collate this information to help expand our wiki article: PC gaming online communities. Criteria: A community is a place where a member can create threads of discussion (not just comments on posts) Not exclusively on reddit Not attached to an individual company (e.g. Overclockers) Communities that span multiple games, not just a single game or series WSGF The Widescreen Gaming Forum was founded back October 13th, 2003, back when widescreen displays were just becoming popular. At the time, many games didn't support 16:9 resolution, or if they did the game would stretch the interface from 4:3 to 16:9 or there would be presented in the dreaded Vert- format (Vert-/+ and Hor-/+ being terms coined by WSGF at the time.). You can read all about the origin of this community in an interview we conducted a few years ago. Now, WSGF is at the forefront for multi-monitor support, FOV fixes and support for new aspect ratios such as 21:9 and 32:9. The community members have been creating fixes and hacks to add PC game support for these aspect ratios for years and it is often the very first place to find them published. Unfortunately due to some issue with Google - as of 2019 - much of the website is currently incorrectly flagged as holding malicious content. These are false positive results due to the nature of the files being hosted (trainers, hacks, etc.). PCGamingWiki are currently in the process of migrating files to our Files section, and discussion forums have been archived and moved to a new subreddit. The main bulk of their 'Detailed Reports' remain on the main website, and community members are encouraged to submit reports. VOGONS VOGONS stands for Very Old Games On New Systems. There's a huge crossover of content between this old school forum and PCGamingWiki, as we both aim to get older games working on new computers. However where VOGONS really shines is the exploration of old PC hardware - your pre-Window XP beige box, which many would argue is the correct way to play many older games. On the forums there are threads about capturing video from a GeForce MX 440 or identifying 286 and 386 motherboards. Adventure Game Studio forum The adventure game may have waned in popularity on PC, but it is thriving more than ever on the Adventure Game Studio platform. These forums are the place where players, hobbyists and professionals come together to discuss adventure games built in the Adventure Games Studio engine, or to talk about the classic 2D adventure game genre in general. Many developers with successful Steam releases will hang out and make announcements and updates here like Wadjet Eye games. Other games you’ll see in development which - if you follow long enough - you may see on more mainstream releases. It's fascinating to see indie games like Tardigrades announced on the forum, slowly get updates and then see how it slowly became entangled in the Star Trek: Discovery lawsuit. SimHQ SimHQ's forums remains one of the best places to discuss very deep 'simulation' games that have often been the exclusive realm of PC gamers: flight simulators. air combat games, tank games and in-depth grand strategies. Dig out your HOTAS! Here you can discuss the best mods and hardware setups for games like Falcon 4.0, IL-2 Sturmovik and DCS World. GamingOnLinux This gaming community for Linux gamers founded in 2011 by Liam Dawe. It is the premier place to find information and reviews on Linux games. This community is particularly passionate about any new releases or Linux ports of games and crowdfunded Linux port promises, and has enough momentum to be able to turn the fortunes of smaller developers who offer Linux ports, for example, Space Mercs received 35% of its sales through Linux users. The website itself receives daily updates and the community is active on its forums. Space Sim Central In 2019, Space Sim Central's forums aren't as active as they used to be, but there is a forum with thousands of posts all about the latest and greatest space simulator games whether you're into recent releases like Everspace and Rebel Galaxy Outlaw or classic space games like Freespace or Wing Commander. Special mentions to Hard Light Productions (Freespace modding forum) and Wing Commander Combat Information Center, which have very active space game communities too. Mouse Sensitivity Perfected your aim in CS:GO and want to those transferable skills to work in Apex Legends? These community profiles and tools are shared in this active forum dedicated to having the same mouse sensitivity feel in multiple games. Find out what the best mice and mousepads from the experts, or find out the 'optimal' sensitivity in this megapoll of over 1000 users. Simtropolis Teeters on the edge of being a game series community for SimCity, but manages to span multiple ‘city builder’ style games - specifically SimCity 4, SimCity 2013 and Cities: Skylines. I’m sure if other worthy city building games were released they would also be included here. This community shares swathes of modding tools, packs and content like new buildings, animations, and things to fill your simulated city. TCRF The Cutting Room Floor is a very specialised wiki dedicated to finding cut content from games that are still left on disc or in the data files. These unused files often contain clues as to what the developer initially envisioned the game to be, but simply didn't have time to implement - such as unused audio files, textures, dialogue trees, etc. This isn’t specifically a PC gaming community, but has some fantastic PC content - for example - Deus Ex music files contain all sorts of secret cryptic text messages or the prototype of Half-Life 2 that was leaked by hacker Axel Gembe in 2003 contains references to a mysterious 'Spire' set in a snowy location, which sounds awfully a lot like a destination in Episode 3 'Borealis' location. Its counterpart old-school forum is run by the same founders and is called Jul, and is a proper sleuth's view into the archaeology of games. Fantastic threads include this one on Fallout: New Vegas, which unearthed data which suggested that Obsidian planned for a much more ambitious game world - for example The Strip would have been a huge single open environment, and there were plans to have world map locations dynamically change hands following successful Legion or NCR quests. FearlessRevolution A community dedicated to creating cheats for games - whether these are single player titles where cheating is ‘harmless', or multiplayer games for cheats, aimbots. These cheat mostly mostly come in the form of CheatEngine tables. Notably made the rounds in recent news due to cheating and microtransactions being patched in Wolfenstein: Youngblood. If you enjoy getting an advantage in games then this is the best place to download or submit your cheats and trainers for virtually every PC game. Linus Tech Tips Yes this is a forum based around a YouTuber - but this is more of a media company of over 20 staff of PC hardware enthusiasts, rather than just an individual personality who happens to be an avid PC gamer. The forums are a great resource for every aspect of PC hardware and building and has an active PC gaming forum. NexusMods Probably so ubiquitous it barely deserves a mention, but NexusMods is the forefront PC game modding community consisting of game content, mods, and clients. Primarily this was a modding site for Skyrim, and has expanded to hundreds of different games, the most popular being Bethesda titles like Fallout 3, 4 and New Vegas, as well as titles like Dark Souls. It has been a real boon to PC gaming, where you'll find many quality of life fixes as well as additional game content mods. HowLongToBeat HowLongToBeat is a fantastic resource for information about how long it takes to complete a game. For a game like Skyrim, you'll be pleased to know that the main story takes a generous 25.5 hours to complete. However a 'completionist' run time averages out at 226 hours. The community invites users to submit their playtimes to help make their information more accurate. The forum itself is kind of like a support group for the typical gamer's Steam backlog (although note this is a multiplatform website). Each user profile encourages players to increase their percentage of 'completed' games. They even coined the term of 'retirements' or games that aren't worth completing, and they host a monthly game club (like a book club, but for games!). PCGamingWiki And there's us! We are a passionate group of PC gamers who enjoy collating fixes and cataloging information about PC games. We have over 300 active editors and produced over 750,000 edits since our project began in 2012. If you'd like to help out please check out our Assignments system and join us on our Discord, we'd love to welcome new members to the community.
  2. 2 points
    It's a more complex discussion and one not relevant to the topic described in this thread, but the general gist, or underlying reasoning, of the policy is arguably to prevent PCGW from providing instructions to users how to bypass/circumvent/remove DRM, as such a thing might not be legal in all countries worldwide. In that sense, merely providing instructions on how to "copy files" etc would be in violation if those instructions were provided with the intention of knowingly and directly circumventing the DRM of a title. So it comes down to, among other things, whether the need of the disc is due to DRM or if it is due to some form of requirement at the time (e.g. needing the disc to offload some data from the HDD to keep storage requirements low). Beyond that, No-CD patches and the like have usually been ignored (as in, PCGW "looks the other way") when they've been bundled with other fixes if the overall fix itself if beneficial to users. A balancing act, basically. The vagueness of the current policy is both to our benefit and our detriment, both because of its current nature where it allows for flexibility and difference in interpretations. Take my two comments on that Star Wars: Dark Forces section as an example. My previous 4 months old comment was made when focusing on the initial sentence of the policy, and took a hard line judgement based on that. However this time around, I instead focus more overall on what the policy is actually intended for, and especially on the third restriction: "Finally, do not give details on how to install/use the patch/application and how to fix any issues that come up while using said patch/application." In this case, I'd interpret the "install/use" portion to mean that providing detailed instructions in the way that the Star Wars: Dark Forces section does might have it violate the policy as well. This is all sorta moot though, since I haven't (intentionally) actually bothered to fully contemplate and look into the matter with Star Wars: Dark Forces since that section involves DOSBox, and I am uncertain of how that changes things around (I am not a user of DOSBox, so I am not familiar with its limitations or restrictions that might be relevant or affect the matter).
  3. 2 points
    That's pretty close to the strictest publicly-available definition of abandonware - as created by pirates, might I add. Regardless, such actions are still illegal. While I don't agree with the legality behind such things, I don't think PCGW should be getting involved with politics. The site is here to fix games, not - and I'm speaking my own personal opinion here - as a base for political issues individual staff members, myself included, perceive as needing 'fixing'.
  4. 2 points
    While it is truly ironic that copyright law, both in the US and globally, is such that illegal actions like piracy are what it takes to preserve video gaming history, I don't feel PCGW is equipped to 'fix' this aspect of gaming. Therein lies the tricky part. If we allow exceptions on a game-by-game basis, who decides? What are the criteria involved? How does PCGW legally back up such a decision should the copyright holders come knocking? Not allowing info on how to unlock DLC or preorder content at all is the simplest, least-complicated option I see.
  5. 2 points
    I'd argue that no, PCGW shouldn't list these sorts of things for current and "active" games (as in the developer still actively works on it and releases content for it). This is in essence similar to the controversy/discussion around Mass Effect 3 and its "on-disc DLC" that were technically "on the disc", but not accessible without forking over some additional cash. In this particular case (Control), we're talking about an outfit available only for pre-orders for now (meant as a pre-order incentive) as well as another outfit limited to console platforms only. We have no idea the developer/publishers future intentions of this content, and it is very likely that this content will later down the line be sold separately to players, or used as another incentive (e.g. when the game hits Steam). I don't think it would sit well with developers/publishers if PCGW flagrantly included instructions on how to access content locked behind a paywall for free, and it could be argued as actively encouraging piracy as well. In this particular case I don't really agree on the "harms the average PC gamer" perspective either, as the average player isn't harmed by not having access to the two outfits in question (or e.g. the on-disc DLC of Mass Effect 3 that were mentioned previously). I think an exception can be made and allowed for cut content that was never intended to be finalized and released. I can also see how stuff like pre-order DLCs exclusive to a certain vendor or platform might be seen as acceptable if enough time has past since the release of the game in question (but it would basically involve years as compilation editions that includes previously exclusive content can be released even years later).
  6. 2 points
    Someone over on GameFAQs mentioned the following to another HL1 player: Might be worth checking out 🙂
  7. 2 points
    It's pretty simple, in a way: They're doing whatever they can to further build their brand and platform. Allowing triple-A titles to simultaneous ship on their platform and others is part of that. As is ensuring timed exclusivity of anticipated or seemingly well-developed indie titles.
  8. 1 point
    Andytizer

    Interview questions for Gamesplanet

    We have a partnership with Gamesplanet at the moment and thought it would be fun to conduct an interview with Gamesplanet. This is an opportunity to help give the wider PC gaming community a better understanding of how a third party game reseller works and to ask some interesting questions. It's also a chance to educate people on what makes Gamesplanet different from the grey market like G2A, CDKeys, Kinguin, etc. I'd like to ask community members to pitch questions and we'll collate the best ones to ask Gamesplanet. Here are a couple of mine. They could also be reworded, these are just off the top of my head! What's the main reason that a pubisher/developer decides to sell through Gamesplanet rather than directly through a store like Steam Why do some publishers refuse to sell keys? Do stores like Steam make it easy to disable game keys purchased with fraudulent credit card transactions?
  9. 1 point
    Expack3

    Interview questions for Gamesplanet

    One question which comes to mind is how they handle being looked upon as the same as sites like G2A when, in fact, they aren't. My initial phrasing goes like this: How do you handle the 'shadow' cast by so-called grey-market sellers?
  10. 1 point
    I'm all for unlocking of "on disc" content for everyone. You paid for the game as it is; if there's content that's arbitrarily locked "on-disc" (on release) unless you pay an additional cost for, then that's anti-consumer and the publisher shouldn't be respected for it, as they're not respecting their customers. If paid DLC comes out after the release of the game and was not in the game files on release, then sure, it can stay locked away even if it can be unlocked via file editing (which seems to be 50/50 in my experiences, sometimes patches include all the content, other times DLC content is not downloaded unless you purchase it). For others: "Abandonware" or unpurchasable games? Unfinished content? Finished but unreleased content due to licensing/region restrictions? These all get my vote towards providing instructions to "unlock" content for them, even if some of these err on the side of piracy. Aside from that, the real problem is moderating select things.. which results in the only solution of not allowing anything in the first place, except for that example of KOTOR2 unfinished game content.. which was before the "DLC" times. It's unfortunate, but I can see some publisher being their corporate greedy selves and trying to come down on PCGW in response to an article instructing users in how to unlock a 50¢ outfit..
  11. 1 point
    I think what others are saying seems to make sense. I remember years ago, I posted stuff on adding the PS3/Mac exclusive DLC to PC versions of Batman Arkham Asylum, and ultimately that ended up being okay (there's a similar thing out there for Arkham Origins but I never got around to messing with it). I think the deciding factor might end up being asking the publisher/developer like how someone did for BAA. If we can get an okay from them, it's probably okay. Otherwise, I'm not sure, aside from maybe in the case of abandonware, where the dev doesn't even exist anymore.
  12. 1 point
    i agree with Aemony here. Stuff that is on Disc/about to be released at a future time on the disk or not should not be included imo. (Outfits, Weapons, other cosmetic stuff, Future upcoming DLC (Whole new Levels, Maps, Singleplayer DLC and content)) Stuff that is just not officially unlocked due to licensing like in FF XIII-2 or Lightning Returns (Couple Outfits missing due to licensing) i am fine with including these since they would never get released or are planned to. In the case of Man of Medan i am torn between both due to the Curators cut being on disk and already being downloaded aswell just needing the DLC on Steam with no additional download does unlock it and was in this case preorder only. That one is hard for me since it's supposed to be a free dlc later this year anyways and also is technicly the way a second playthrough should be played as. So it's kind of a game by game basis or simply not allowing it at all. Allowing it for all of them would be clearly wrong imo and not just hurt the reputation of the site but also make us not any better than other shady websites unlocking DLC and paid content in their pirated games.
  13. 1 point
    For people who aren't aware, there's a neat project called Flashpoint that's seeking to preserve Flash, Shockwave, and other browser plugin based games by downloading them and putting them into a client. It already has a lot of stuff in playable state. Here's the homepage for the project: https://bluemaxima.org/flashpoint/
  14. 1 point
    TBF, this is more useful for things like Strong Bad Flash episodes and Homestuck. This sort of thing is meant to be viewed in the browser as part of an interactive experience. Games, yeah - they don't strictly need this since, as long as they aren't DRM-hindered, just download the SWF file and play!
  15. 1 point
    Flash games that works standalone are pretty much guaranteed to work for years to come, even without this project, as desktop Flash "projectors" have existed for years, both in official forms from Adobe and recently in third-party open-source alternative Flash "players" such as LightSpark. The games that are questionable are the ones that relies on some form of online DRM solution (as in, they require a connection to a server and/or sign-in to play). Those are unlikely to function regardless of what third-party solution is used, if the servers it depends on are taken offline.
  16. 1 point
    Actually, they can, because Cyberpunk 2077 can be pre-ordered on EGS with CDPR saying they want to make it available on as many storefronts as possible. This does mean that Cyberpunk 2077 is currently available almost everywhere; GOG, Steam, EGS for instance. The problem is that the DARQ-developer, Unfold Games, also mentions that it's weird how such a hotly anticipated title can "simship" (simultaneous shipping; releasing at the same time) on EGS as well as other platforms just fine while Epic, after expressly going "Oh, you made a Steam store page. Come to us exclusively or don't come at all", deny this to other developers based on "careful curation" and "current plans". I'm not buying their reasoning for it. It seems more like Epic just want to buy up small, good-looking projects with a planned release on Steam to expand their own store quick while preventing any small development studio from exposing sales-numbers. Sales-numbers would hold tremendous value if Epic ever agreed to a "simship" of a title like DARQ. With games like Cyberpunk 2077 they just accept the fact that: - Either it happens anyway, or - CDPR acts, like Epic expects, professionally to not reveal such numbers. Epic are more than likely afraid to have a comparable set of sales-numbers held against the EGS while they still throw around Fortnite-money.
  17. 1 point
    Andytizer

    "504 Gateway Time-out" error

    I'm afraid this is due to too many connections to the database happening at once - it'll happen when we have too many concurrent connections. It is something we are aware of and will be addressed when we do a large migration from Hetzner to Digital Ocean later this year.
  18. 1 point
    Microsoft is only really into it because they remembered they own Windows, the OS that most PC games run on. Kind of a bird brained move of them to abandon Windows as soon as they released the Xbox, considering it wasn't even their competitor.
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