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Computer Games

Deep Q-Learning Simply Explained


I find Atari games to be really difficult. The game consists of two paddles on opposite sides of the game screen bouncing a ball back and forth. If the ball goes past one of the paddles, a point is gained by the opposing paddle. The first paddle to reach twenty points wins the game. It sounds easy, but I find that when I play the game, I have to stay laser-focused on my screen, taking note of every miniscule movement of the ball to ensure that I prevent the opponent from scoring a point. One moment of hesitation can create a chance for the opponent to win.

PlayStation 5 owners can finally use extended storage for games with new update

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

An upcoming update for the PlayStation 5 will make it a lot easier to store your downloadable video games. Sony announced Tuesday it is rolling out the first major software update Wednesday for the PS5 since launching last November. The top feature coming to the video game console is support for external USB drives for storing PS5 games. If you run out of space on your PS5, you can transfer games onto an external USB stick to make more room. However, users can't play those games directly from the USB stick or download games directly to the drive, says Sony.

Sony PS5 update enables external storage for next-gen games, with a caveat

Washington Post - Technology News

Sony has stated previously that the console will support additional storage via internal M.2 drives in the future. As such, this update is something of a stopgap that lessens, but doesn't eliminate, the inconvenience of the PS5′s limited storage space. Some of the console's early titles have already run into storage issues, with "Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War" requiring over 200 GBs of space when players also include the "Warzone" battle royale mode. Other titles, like "Hitman 3" and "Destiny 2," eat up over 100 GBs, according to a March article from Game Rant.

Creaks, clacks and clicks: Making the scary sounds of 'Little Nightmares 2'

Washington Post - Technology News

Sometimes, the schoolteacher (and other enemies) can be heard from far away, as you crawl through vents or navigate through long hallways. Depending on where you are, those distant sounds may reverberate differently, and they're vague enough that it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what they are. To masterfully instill a sense of dread in the player, Vasselbring built an under-the-hood audio system that could simulate how different noises would sound in different spaces.

Investors are flocking to video gaming, but be wary of esports, SPACs, advisors say

Washington Post - Technology News

Activision Blizzard intended 2020 to be the year the Overwatch and Call of Duty leagues would capitalize on the company's vision of creating an esports setup that mirrored traditional sports. Teams would host events before live audiences, traveling from one host site to another. Covid derailed those plans just as they were beginning, and while both leagues held online competitions from remote locations, a linchpin of their economic model -- one in which esports teams have access to local market revenue through ticket and merchandise sales, as well as regional corporate sponsorships -- completely fell apart. Ahead of the 2021 season for both leagues, Activision Blizzard laid off its esports events team.

Early access releases: Should we buy video games before they're finished?

BBC News

Press X to Continue podcast host, Steffan Powell, says buying an early access release comes down to knowing what you're getting yourself into - and understanding how long it takes both indie and AAA studios alike to develop an engaging experience.

Google Stadia is getting 10 new indie games


With Google moving away from making its own games for Stadia, third-party indie studios could be crucial to its goal of stocking the service with 400 titles. Today, the cloud gaming platform is unveiling 10 new games via its Stadia Makers program, which was launched last March to give independent devs working with the Unity cross-platform engine an easy route to self-publishing their work. As you'd expect, there's no shortage of original storytelling and the games span a multitude of genres. The new additions include The DarkSide Detective: A Fumble in the Dark (April 15th), a sequel to the retro-style point and click puzzle game; Hundred Days - Winemaking Simulator (May 13th), for anyone who has ever wanted to own a winemaking business but feared taking the financial plunge; Foreclosed (summer), a narrative-driven mystery set in a cyberpunk world; and Figment 2: Creed Valley, a whimsical adventure sequel set in a human mind overrun by nightmarish creatures that represent insecurities and doubts. Additional games slated as coming soon include Grime, a side-scrolling RPG that sees players battling their way through a hellish landscape armed with "living" weapons; She Dreams Elsewhere, in which you play as a comatose woman on journey to confront her fears; Merek's Market, a chaotic crafting game that puts you in charge of a medieval armory; Death Carnival, a hectic top-down shooter (with online multiplayer) set within a televised blood sport where contestants battle mechs and monsters; Skyclimbers, a multiplayer city-building game meets action RPG that looks a lot like Horizon Zero Dawn; and Jay and Silent Bob: Chronic Blunt Punch, which gives the iconic movie stoners their very own side-scrolling beat-em-up.

Nintendo has launched a Spring Sale, featuring a few discounts that are worth checking out


TL;DR: Nintendo has launched a Spring Sale that spans a few different publishers, featuring discounts on both big franchises and indie darlings. Nintendo is the latest to join the Spring Sale bandwagon, following huge sales from both PlayStation and Xbox. While it doesn't include many discounts that will blow you away, we still think that there are a few worth checking out if you're looking for something new to play. SEE ALSO: Nintendo's Switch Lite is exactly what it needs to be Our highlights from the sale are below, but the full list of offers can be found on the official Nintendo eShop website.

How to Customize Your PS5's Home Screen


Variety is the spice of video game life, and if you like to flip between games, your console's home screen becomes a crucial home base. A poorly designed and organized screen will make it a chore to find what you're looking for. So the more you can customize it to your liking, the more it becomes a useful tool rather than annoyance. Unfortunately, the PS5 doesn't have a ton of customization features at launch. The Xbox Series X, by contrast, allows for far more organization of your games, as well as themes and other tweaks the PS5 currently lacks.

Tech retailer Newegg finally scraps 15-year ban on the name 'Mohammad'


Newegg users can now give their name as "Mohammad" when leaving reviews, because apparently they couldn't do that before. The online tech retailer is revising its language filter after it was called out for banning one of the most popular names in the world -- for 15 years. The issue was brought to light by Mohammad Al-Tayyar, a government worker in Kuwait, who discovered it after attempting to review one of the products on Newegg's website. "I was writing a review @Newegg and the system marked my name (Mohammad) as: "UNACCEPTABLE WORDS USED -- offensive language," Al-Tayyar tweeted on Wednesday, sharing a screenshot of the error message. "Is my name offensive @Newegg?" Other users were quickly able to duplicate this, indicating that Al-Tayyar's experience wasn't just an unfortunate bug. "Just verified this - I guess @Newegg wants your reviews unless you have the most common first name on Earth," tweeted game developer Rami Ismail. I was writing a review @Newegg and the system marked my name (Mohammad) as: "UNACCEPTABLE WORDS USED - offensive language". Is my name offensive @Newegg? Speaking to Mashable via DM, Al-Tayyar said he'd been trying to review a laptop and NAS storage he'd purchased for his 6-year-old daughter, who was using them for remote learning. He was shocked to see Newegg flag his name as potentially offensive "in a big red alert all in caps." For Al-Tayyar, the alert was yet another example of the damaging, pervasive nature of Islamophobia. Fear and hatred of Arab and Muslim people has caused even the most innocent elements of their culture to be regarded with suspicion, inflicting undeniable harm to these communities. "Every time I see a movie in the media or the video games...[a]ll the Arab/Muslims [are] displayed as the bad, evil, stupid thieves," said Al-Tayyar, noting that Arab people are often negatively depicted as "in the desert with the camels." "Now the system [is] telling me I have to change my name?" Our team looked into the list of words and looks like it was added in 2006. Words were added when used inappropriately on our site, so likely there was an incident back then that led to this. Regardless, we feel this is wrong and are updating the list as we speak. Al-Tayyar told Mashable he emailed Newegg about this issue, but has not yet received a response. However, Newegg did quickly respond on Twitter, apologising and stating that "Mohammad" has now been removed from its list of prohibited words. According to Newegg, the name had been on its banned list since it was first added in 2006. The company stated it had banned religious terms that were being misused, including "Jesus" and "God." "Words were added when used inappropriately on our site, so likely there was an incident back then that led to this," wrote Newegg's official Twitter account. "Regardless, we feel this is wrong and are updating the list as we speak.