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      Developer Picroma has announced that Cube World, its very-long-in-the-works voxel-based action-RPG, will be holding a closed beta next week, ahead of its official launch later this year.

      Cube World, which first surfaced all the way back in 2013, is intended to offer an exploration-focussed take on the action-RPG genre, with its procedurally generated open-world promising to deliver a different experience on each play-through.

      Although Cube World's $15 USD alpha version was enjoyable in its own right, its successes have long been overshadowed by the fact that its developer Wolfram von Funck embarked on an extended period of radio silence not long after launch, with whole years passing between social media posts - something that von Funck attributed to mental health issues in a recent, candid blog post.

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      Following the much-delayed release of Anthem's Cataclysm update last month, BioWare says it will be ditching its originally announced post-launch content plans, and will now be delivering "seasonal updates" in place of its regular planned "acts" while it focusses on on "core issues".

      When BioWare initially revealed its post-launch content plans for Anthem back in February, just ahead of what transpired to be the game's less-than-stellar release, it teased three different upcoming Acts. Each would consist of several updates, expanding the world and the activities available to players, and would culminate in a limited-time Catalclysm event, designed to shake up the core experience.

      Act One was originally planned to go live in March, but many of its features were delayed as BioWare struggled to remedy the numerous technical issues plaguing Anthem following release. It took a total of six months to get the game's first Cataclysm event out the door, and ne'er a word was spoken about the other two planned Acts in the interim - and now we know why.

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    • Showdown Bandit is Now Available on Steam!

      Episode One. Something unnatural is stirring on the abandoned sets of the once popular kids puppet show, Showdown Bandit. Play as the awakened Bandit in this stealth-action-horror where your only hope of survival is entangled within the 3 rules of the show: Play your part. Guard your strings. And don’t look up!

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      Steam's library view has existed, unwavering, since the birth of time itself (more or less), and few would argue that it wasn't in need of a long-overdue revamp. We've known one was coming for a while now, of course, with various work-in-progress teases, both official and otherwise, having emerged at intervals over the last year or so. Finally, however, Valve's efforts are ready for their public debut, and are available now in beta.

      Once you've opted in to the beta (which merely requires selecting the appropriate drop-down option from Steam's settings menu), the first thing you'll likely notice is your new library's aesthetic overhaul. That immediately comes into play on the new library landing page, which offers a snapshot of recently played titles, as well as recent activity for select games in your collection - seemingly pulled from developer-created news posts. There's also an overview of recent friend activity, and the ability to display games organised into user-created collections.

      Steam's library update (which, incidentally, isn't reflected across its Big Picture mode at present) also brings with it new-look pages for individual games. Select a title in your library at random, and you'll be presented with a broad selection of information pertaining to that game, now organised in a manner which doesn't appear to have tumbled out of the 90s.

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    • It's no secret that E3, once the indisputable highlight of the games industry's announcement calendar, has found itself slowly floundering into irrelevancy in recent years, with an increasing number of publishers foregoing expensive show attendance in favour of more intimate events and livestreams of their own. In response, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) - the US trade body that runs E3 - is reportedly proposing a radical rebranding of the show for next year, which would turn it into a "fan, media, and influencer festival".

      All this comes via a leaked pitch deck (as seen by GameDaily.biz) intended for the ESA members, which suggests possible new forms for E3 following member feedback. The core of the proposal revolves around the idea of turning the once-industry-only event into a more consumer-focussed affair, and the ESA's membership has reportedly already approved an additional 15,000 tickets for the general public, bringing total consumer tickets up to 25,000.

      As part of that change, E3's traditional floor layout could, according to the ESA's proposal, be adjusted to accommodate eight large-scale stage-like "experience hubs" where punters are able to watch influencers and celebrities playing video games - with the organisation suggesting the Los Angeles Lakers playing a basketball game as an example.

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