If your favorite part about Mass Effect is making jokes about the game's wide-array of sexual paring options, you can skip Andromeda -- Cards Against Humanity has announced a limited run Mass Effect expansion. Well, expansion is a bit of an overstatement. The terrible person's favorite card game is selling 14 Mass Effect themed cards for $1 -- and yes, most of them are poking fun at the series history of letting the player hook up with pretty much everyone.
Brian St. James is called Kephrii in the competitive Overwatch scene, and he's known as the highest ranked Widowmaker player in the world. He recently ran into a hacker impersonating his gamer tag and using cheats, but instead of getting mad, the real Kephrii got even. While streaming the match on YouTube, St. James showed off his skills by consistently killing the fake Kephrii, who played Widowmaker, then Tracer (two different character classes), on the opposing team.
AMD has largely ceded the performance processor space to Intel in recent years. You typically get one of its chips inside a budget PC, not an all-out gaming rig. At last, though, you might have reason to get excited: AMD is launching Ryzen 7, a desktop CPU line based on its much-ballyhooed Zen architecture. The key is a dramatic improvement in the number of instructions the chip can handle at once. A Ryzen 7 CPU can do 52 percent more work every cycle than a similarly-clocked predecessor thanks to a newer 14-nanometer manufacturing process, five times the bandwidth and some overdue architectural upgrades. This is AMD's first processor with simultaneous multithreading (Hyper-Threading in Intel speak), so each core can execute two code paths at the same time.
Futurama continues to be the animated franchise that just won't die. Fox and developer TinyCo (a divison of Jam City) announced today that they're working on another mobile game from the series -- Futurama: Worlds of Tomorrow -- which will notably have creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen involved. Even better, TinyCo is also working with the show's original voice actors, animators (Rough Draft Studio) and some of its writers. We still don't know what the game is actually about, but it's expected to land this summer as a free title. The developers will also be revealing more during a Facebook Live chat this afternoon.
Valve has been giving Steam users Linux love since 2012, and it's not stopping with VR. The company just launched SteamVR for Linux, letting developers create Linux content for the HTC Vive VR headset, trackers and other hardware. The program is in beta, meaning developers must use an NVIDIA developer beta driver that's built on "Vulkan," the successor to OpenGL. You're limited to "direct" mode, meaning you can only display images on the headset and not a desktop display at the same time.
Gaming laptops used to be an outlier in the world of portable computing. When the rest of the market was focused on extending battery life, gaming laptops doubled down on raw power and thick frames designed for better airflow. Trying to find a small gaming machine that didn't sacrifice power for portability was a fool's errand. Today, things are different. Gaming laptops can be thin, have enough battery life to survive a plane flight, and double as a productivity and entertainment machine with few compromises. The best recent example of this to cross my desk is the Alienware 13, a small, powerful gaming laptop that does almost everything right.
Blizzard is legendary for supporting games well after they've left store shelves. Diablo II, for instance, got a patch last June, 16 years after the action RPG shipped. However, even a committed developer has its limits. The company has announced plans to end support for both Windows XP and Windows Vista across several games, including Diablo III, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm, StarCraft II and World of Warcraft. This will be a "staggered process," but it's a hard cutoff once a given title loses support -- it won't run until you upgrade.