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Plants Vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 Free Update Adds Two New Characters This Summer

PopCap and EA are getting ready to roll out a new, free update for Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2. Trouble in Zombopolis: Part One is due out this summer.

When it lands, you’ll be able to explore Zombopolis with two new characters. Breakfast Brainz is a Super Brainz variant. Toxic Citron is a different take on the time-traveling orange.

There will also be more than 1,200 new customization items and the return of the Boat Blast shooting gallery to the Backyard Battleground hub. The update will also bring balance changes.

This marks the second free update. The first, Graveyard Variety Pack, arrived in March. For more on Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2, check out our review.

[Source: EA]

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Battlefield 4 Final Stand DLC Is Free For A Limited Time

EA is continuing to prime the pump for Battlefield 1 at E3. The publisher is nudging players back to Battlefield 4 with some free DLC for a limited time.

Now through May 24, you can grab the Final Stand DLC free on all five platforms (PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC). This is in addition to the previous offer of Dragon’s Teeth DLC for Battlefield 4 and the Robbery expansion for Battlefield Hardline.

For more on Battlefield 1, check out our coverage of the reveal.

[Source: EA]

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Microsoft Is Setting One Million Defunct Xbox Live Gamertags Free

If you have $ 10 and a dream, you might finally get that Gamertag you’ve been longing for. Microsoft has announced it is freeing up almost 1 million Gamertags later this week.

The affected accounts were created on the original Xbox and were never migrated to the Xbox 360. In order to get one, you need to be an active Xbox Live Gold member and have at least one year of cumulative Gold tenure.

The list isn’t being released, so you’ll have to try your luck over a 24-hour period beginning on May 18th at 2 p.m. Eastern / 11 a.m. Pacific. Many of the tags fall into the following categories:

  • Proper Names
  • Pop culture references (Entertainment, sports, gaming)
  • Types of Food
  • Geography and Travel
  • Science and Technology
  • Math and Numbers
  • Animals
  • Some of the greatest inventions of all time

Microsoft recommends you make the change via Xbox.com. Xbox One users can also make the change on the console or via the Xbox app on Windows 10. If you’re still on Xbox 360, you won’t be able to do this via the console. You’ll have to do it on the website or the Windows 10 app. You can make the change via this link.

[Source: Xbox Wire]

 

Our Take
My lifelong dream of changing my Gamertag to “FluxCapacitor” (the greatest invention of all time), is within reach. Seriously though, if you’ve long wished for a Gamertag that you’ve been stalking and has been unavailable, now’s your chance. Happy hunting!

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Blog: No, I will not work on your game for free

“Work is usually only worth what you pay for it, and I can promise you that I’m going to be continue putting in my very best effort to the gentleman who paid me on time.” …


Gamasutra News

Star Wars Battlefront Outer Rim DLC Free To Try This Weekend

If you’re sitting on a copy of Star Wars Battlefront and haven’t yet purchased the Outer Rim DLC, EA is giving you the chance to check it out this weekend. The DLC maps and heroes will be free to try this weekend.

There are four maps split across Sullust and Tatooine. You’ll also have access to the Extraction mode and heroes Nien Nunb and Greedo.

You can start playing on May 13. The free trial period wraps on May 15.

For more on Star Wars Battlefront, check out our review

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Atlas Reactor Is Free To Play On Steam This Weekend

After recently shifting gears from free-to-play to up-front pricing, Atlas Reactor is expanding its beta program. In addition to closed beta through its own client, Trion Worlds is opening the game to Steam players via the Early Access program.

To kick that off, the publisher is inviting players to sample the game free this weekend. From 5 p.m. Pacific today, May 12, through 11:59 p.m. Pacific on Sunday, May 15. Also launched today is a custom game spectator mode. You can follow specific players or watch the whole game from an overhead perspective.

Following the free weekend, you’ll need to purchase the game via Early Access or on the official site to keep playing. You can read more about the different purchase options in our previous coverage. You can also learn more in our preview.

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Nintendo Confirms Animal Crossing, Fire Emblem Mobile Games Will Be Free To Play

All the signs were pointing to Nintendo fully embracing free-to-play (or, if as the company prefers, “free-to-start”) for its mobile offerings. A report this morning puts a fine point on it for the next two titles, though.

We’ve known that Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing are coming to smartphones and tablets as the next two Nintendo mobile games. When the publisher and its partner DeNA launch them, they will be free-to-play according to DeNA in conversation with the Wall Street Journal.

Nintendo’s first foray into mobile is the social app, Miitomo. It, too, is free-to-play with monetization in place for customization items.

Both Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing are slated to launch this fall.

[Source: Wall Street Journal]

 

Our Take
This is the right play for Nintendo, as free-to-play doesn’t have quite the negative connotation it used to. Yes, there are bad free-to-play games, but the model no longer directly correlates to quality. I’m eager to see if Nintendo is able to find the balance.

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Halo 5: Guardians Free Memories Of Reach Update Brings New Mode, Map & More

Sometime this month, Halo developer 343 Industries will release Halo 5: Guardian's latest free update, Memories of Reach. The update includes a new arena map, multiplayer game, weapons, and much more.

The multiplayer game Infection is a 12-player, round-based mode that starts out with one infected player who must convert the others by taking them out. We'll have more on Infection here at Game Informer later today, so please check back.

Meanwhile, the map – Statis – is a mid-sized asymmetrical map that 343 says it will detail more in this week's livestream on Wednesday, May 11 from 3 to 5 p.m. Pacific on Twitch and the Halo Channel.

Memories of Reach also contains matchmaking improvements, new REQ items, balancing updates, and more.

For a complete rundown of the update, check out Halo Waypoint.

[Source: 343 Industries]

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It’s Minecraft’s Xbox Birthday, And You Can Get Some Free DLC

Minecraft is celebrating four years on console, and to celebrate, Microsoft and Mojang are offering some birthday DLC. This is also your chance to catch up on previous years’ celebratory offerings.

There’s a new skin pack to celebrate the occasion. This has become an annual tradition, but don’t worry if you’re just clueing into it.

All of the previous skin pack birthday bundles are available again for a limited time on Xbox 360 and Xbox One. You can download all four now through May 16.

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Kathy Rain Is Noir With 90s Flair, And You Can Try It Free

Point-and-click adventures are back, with revamped classics like Grim Fandango and new additions like Telltale’s impressive stable. Because of the genre’s resurgence, developers are experimenting with period pieces featuring aesthetics that fit the setting.

The latest of these, Kathy Rain from Clifftop Games and Raw Fury, is out tomorrow. And if you’re not sure if it’s up your alley, you've got a chance to take it for a spin.

(Please visit the site to view this media)

In addition to the launch trailer (above), you can nab a demo on Steam or GOG. Kathy’s on the hunt for what happened to her estranged grandfather, and you can solve the mystery for yourself tomorrow, May 5.

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