Epic Giving Away $100 Million To Aspiring Game Devs, Thanks To Fortnite

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As part of its presentation at the Game Developers Conference, Epic Games announced a massive grant program, and it's thanks to the popularity of Fortnite. The Epic MegaGrants program will award shares of $100 million over the course of five years to aspiring game developers, educators, and other professionals using the Unreal Engine and open-source tools.

This is the next stage in Epic's grants program, which started in 2015 with a $5 million pool. That funding has expanded significantly, which Epic chalks up to "Fortnite's unbelievable success."

The grants will be awarded ranging from $5,000 to $500,000. Those who receive grants will still own their IP and be allowed to publish. Epic says that these grants have no strings attached, which means you don't need to sign any kind of exclusivity arrangement to receive them. There is no firm deadline for grant applications.

Oculus Rift S Revealed, New VR Headset With Built-In Sensors For $400

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Oculus Rift S Revealed, New VR Headset With Built-In Sensors For $400

Oculus has revealed its next PC-based VR headset called the Rift S as part of GDC 2019. The most notable improvement is the inclusion of built-in sensors for inside-out tracking; this means you no longer need to set up external sensors if you use a Rift S. Additional details on Oculus Quest have also been announced as well, which is the company's upcoming standalone headset.

The built-in sensors make up what's called Oculus Insight and it's capable of free-roaming room scale VR gaming. The Rift S features five separate sensors on the headset while the Quest has four. Rift S also comes with a bump in visual quality--it'll have a total resolution of 2560x1440 (1280x1440 per eye) on a fast-switch LCD display. However, refresh rate has been slightly dropped down, going from 90 Hz to 80 Hz. Oculus stated that this was done to offset the increase in resolution in order to maintain the same required PC hardware specifications to run Oculus games properly.

As for the Quest's specs, it's powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor with storage options starting at 64 GB. Oculus states that the headset's resolution is 1600x1440 per eye on an OLED display with an overall refresh rate of 72 Hz.

Outdrink Satan To Escape Hell In Oxenfree Dev's Next Game, Afterparty

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Outdrink Satan To Escape Hell In Oxenfree Dev's Next Game, Afterparty

Night School Studio's Afterparty captures the same colorful graphic novel art style--complete with speech balloons--as the developer's first game, Oxenfree. Its hilarious writing is brought to life through an excellent assortment of voice actors as well. However, the simpler mechanics in Oxenfree have become more complex in Afterparty, and the world feels larger and more alive. The writing, though still humorous, is definitely intended for a more mature audience as well.

During GDC 2019, I had the opportunity to talk to Night School co-founders Sean Krankel and Adam Hines, as well as see 20 minutes-or-so of gameplay from early in Afterparty's story. You can read my interview with Krankel and Hines below.

Gameplay wise, Afterparty handles a lot like Oxenfree, with the major mechanics at your control being walking around and choosing dialogue options during conversations. Afterparty does shake up the formula a bit with mini activities, like beer pong, sprinkled throughout and a system where getting drunk opens up new dialogue options--such as angrily insulting someone or flirting. You also have access to hell's version of Twitter, called Bicker, which gives you insight into what people are thinking or feeling.

The Best Xbox One Game Deals On Xbox Live This Week

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The Best Xbox One Game Deals On Xbox Live This Week

Another batch of deals is now live in the Xbox Live store, including a new publisher sale, controller discounts, and price cuts on dozens of great games. Last week, Square Enix ran a publisher sale in the PlayStation Store, and this week, that sale jumps over to the Xbox Store, where you can find 70 games from some of its best series marked down.

Released less than two months ago, Kingdom Hearts III is already discounted at $45. Life Is Strange fans, this is a great time to pick up the complete first season if you're looking to own it on Xbox One, as it's only $4. You can also grab the complete season of Life Is Strange: Before the Storm for only $5.10 and the first episode of Life Is Strange 2 for $4.

Final Fantasy XV is also marked down this week--you can grab the Royal edition for just $25 and the season pass for only $7.50. Released in 2016, the JRPG received an 8/10 in GameSpot's Final Fantasy XV review. "It would be hard for anyone to deny that Final Fantasy XV is a fascinating game after giving it a chance," wrote critic Peter Brown. "Where its characters fail to impress, Final Fantasy XV's beautiful world and exciting challenges save the day."

Brad Pitt And Leonardo DiCaprio Get Retro In First Once Upon A Time In Hollywood Trailer

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The first trailer for Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood has been released. The latest movie from the revered director of Pulp Fiction and Django Unchained arrives in July and stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Margot Robbie.

The trailer doesn't reveal many plot details, but it does establish the late '60s setting and main characters. We see DiCaprio as action star Rick Dalton, being interviewed alongside his long-time stunt double Cliff Booth, played by Pitt. There are shots of Robbie as Sharon Tate, the actress who was murdered by the Manson family in 1969, plus lots of cool period detail. Oh, and a very funny appearance from martial arts star Bruce Lee (played here by Mike Moh). Check it out above.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood hits theaters on July 26 and features probably the most ridiculously star-studded cast of the year (outside of Avengers Endgame of course). It also includes Al Pacino, Dakota Fanning, James Marsden, Scoot McNairy, Damian Lewis, Emile Hirsch, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, and Lena Dunham, plus Luke Perry, who shot a role before his death earlier this month.

Apex Legends' Battle Pass: How To Get It For 50% Off

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Apex Legends has gone from strength to strength in recent weeks as players embrace Respawn's battle royale game and its free-to-play model. Now, the game will hit another milestone with the release of its first season and optional battle pass. Season 1: Wild Frontier will release March 19 at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET / 5 PM GMT, and you'll be able to pick up its battle pass immediately. Everyone who plays during the first season will also be able to unlock the Wild Frontier skin, five Apex packs, and 18 Wild Frontier stat trackers for free.

The standard battle pass will cost you 950 Apex Coins. There's also a battle pass bundle available for 2,800 Apex coins, which instantly unlocks your next 25 levels of rewards. However, if the regular battle pass is enough for you, there's a way to get it for way cheaper: by signing up for one month of EA Access (Xbox One) or Origin Basic Access (PC), which each cost only US $5 / £4 / AU $7 per month. There's currently no equivalent option for PS4.

Fortnite Update Adds Flint-Knock Pistol; Patch Notes Available Here

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Fortnite Update Adds Flint-Knock Pistol; Patch Notes Available Here

Fortnite's updates keep on coming, and now we've got yet another patch to keep us entertained in our battle royale excursions. Version 8.11 is live now on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Nintendo Switch, and mobile, bringing with it a new weapon and another limited-time mode.

The new weapon is named the Flint-Knock Pistol, and it looks powerful. Developer Epic Games says the gun does up to 90 damage at close range, but it suffers from "significant damage falloff" at range and needs to be reloaded after every shot--a process that takes three seconds. The Flint-Knock Pistol uses Heavy Ammo and can be found in floor loot in Common and Uncommon rarities.

One Shot is Fortnite's latest LTM, meanwhile. This mode enables low gravity and restricts player health to just 50. Sniper Rifles and Hunting Rifles are the only weapons available, while Bandages are your only help if things go wrong.