World of Warcraft artwork showing off Bolvar in the Shadowlands

[Update #2]: Shadowlands' animated shorts are here to introduce the four Covenants!

[Update]: World of Warcraft's Shadowlands expansion will allow secondary characters to skip the story bits!

World of Warcraft's Shadowlands expansion is set to launch this October 27th, and in order to celebrate its upcoming arrival, Blizzard is looking to give away a unique mount to all players. This won't be any random mount, however, but rather one out of five concepts voted by the WoW community!

While there is sadly no concept art showing off what these mounts might look like, their names are fairly descriptive and you should have an easy time figuring out just what the final product will look like. As for the mounts themselves, here's what's on offer:

Overwatch screenshot of Roadhog and Zenyatta

[Update]: The experimental update has gone live, and with it a heavy nerf to Roadhog.

While there is very little randomness in Overwatch's gameplay, shotguns are one of the few exceptions. Their bullet spread follows somewhat of a pattern but is mostly random, which means the actual damage you deal can significantly differ from shot to shot. Nowhere is this more noticeable than on Roadhog given that sometimes you can one-shot characters like Ana, and sometimes do barely 50% of their health.

Thankfully, all of this nonsense is looking like it will soon be coming to an end. As a part of the current experimental update, Blizzard has reworked all of the shotguns so they have a set and predictable spread, which should make them a lot more potent in the hands of skilled players.

The Division Falcon Lost incursion artwork

In a bit of a surprising, though not unwelcome move, Ubisoft has launched a giveaway for their PvP/PvE shooter The Division! To grab yourself a copy, all you need to do is head on over to the Ubisoft website, add The Division to your account, and you'll be good to go after a somewhat lengthy download.

As always, this giveaway does have a bit of a time limit. As such, make sure to add The Division to your account before September 8th! Once you do that, you'll be able to play it whenever you want, even when the giveaway has long since gone away.

Valorant official artwork for Sage

Even though the Vandal is supposed to be the more aggressive counterpart to the Phantom, the latter is unfortunately better in just about every way. The Phantom can one-shot at close range just as the Vandal can, but it also has a faster firing speed, significantly less visible bullets, a more reliable spread, and to really pour salt onto the wound, better first-shot accuracy!

With all of that in mind, I am delighted to say that the Vandal has now finally received a much needed buff! Its damage has been increased from 39 to 40, while its firing rate has gone up from 9.25 to 9.75. A relatively small change in the grand scheme of things, but this should make it a lot more competitive.

Battletoads official screenshot of the melee-focused brawler combat

The original Battletoads has acquired a somewhat legendary reputation over the years, and for good reason. Its presentation and fast-paced action, combined with a difficulty curve that could reduce even grown men to a quivering mess, made it the perfect choice when you needed a game that would really mess with your friends.

So given its popularity, it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise to hear that Battletoads has now received a spiritual successor. The new Battletoads brings with it a variety of fast-paced gameplay styles, cartoon inspired and hand-drawn visuals, a combo based combat system with plenty of morph attacks, and naturally, good ol' fashioned co-op madness for up to three players.

Hearthstone screenshot of Thrall

[Update]: Blizzard are creating and giving away a unique mount based on player votes!

In order to prevent players from combining multiple damage-increasing effects into a single button, Blizzard introduced a global cooldown (GCD) to most abilities. While this did indeed have the desired effect of reducing burst damage, it came at a heavy cost.

Since the affected abilities didn't change in any significant way, the players still had to go through exactly the same rotations as before, just with far more stop-gaps sprinkled throughout. So if you used an ability that increased your damage for 10 seconds, you would realistically only be able to use 9 of those seconds, and that number only went further down the more abilities you needed to chain. Not exactly ideal, I'm sure you'll agree.

Overwatch screenshot of Ashe and BOB

[Update]: Overwatch experimental update has heavily nerfed Roadhog and rebalanced shotguns as a whole.

Only a few weeks have gone by since the last batch of balance changes, and already Blizzard has unleashed another dose of nerfs for Overwatch. This time around they're all focused on the various DPS and support heroes, with the intent being to reduce the overall power level and cut back on some of the power creep that has been going on since the GOATs (triple tank/triple support) meta.

Rather than babble on, allow me to share with you what exactly has been changed. Have a gander, there's some rather solid nerfs in here:

Hitman screenshot from the Marakesh level

If you're looking for something to spend the next couple of weeks on, you'll be happy to hear that both Hitman (2016) and the Shadowrun RPGs are entirely free to grab. Simply head on over to the Epic Games Store, add them to your collection, and you'll be able to play them whenever you want.

The only catch is that the giveaway will be ending very soon. In other words, you only have until September 3rd to grab yourself a copy of both games, after which they'll be replaced by the equally excellent Into The Breach.

Left 4 Dead 2 screenshot of evil clown zombies

Despite releasing over ten years ago, Left 4 Dead 2 still has a rather sizable playerbase. And for good reason too, because even though there have been countless co-op games released since then, very few have managed to hit that perfect balance between utter chaos and excellent team-based gameplay.

With all of that in mind, I am more than pleased to say that Left 4 Dead 2 is soon getting another major update - The Last Stand. The details are unfortunately lacking, but according to the brief announcement, The Last Stand will be "created by the community, for the community."

Evil Genius 2 Maximilian artwork without logo

If you were hoping for Evil Genius 2 to release at some point during this holiday season, I'm afraid I bring some bad news. Due to the pandemic slowing everything down, Rebellion has decided to push the release date of Evil Genius 2 back to 2021 in order to ensure it launches in as polished of a state as possible.

"We want to deliver a sequel that will do justice to the franchise and be loved and played by the Evil Genius community for years to come, just like the original," reads the brief update. "And while we know many of you will be disappointed to wait a little longer, launching next year affords us the time to do precisely that."