AMD Reveals More Details About Radeon RX 480 Power Draw

Radeon RX 480

As expected AMD has released more details about the Radeon RX 480 power draw controversy and has updated its statement addressing the issues that were discovered with the new graphics card.

AMD has now assembled a team of developers from around the world to create a new update for the graphics card which will lower the power draw from the PCIe slot with minimal impact on performance.

The new driver is expected to be released in the next couple of days will take the form of the Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1. As soon as it is released we will keep you up-to-date as always.

The official updated statement from AMD reads :

We promised an update today (July 5, 2016) following concerns around the Radeon RX 480 drawing excess current from the PCIe bus. Although we are confident that the levels of reported power draws by the Radeon RX 480 do not pose a risk of damage to motherboards or other PC components based on expected usage, we are serious about addressing this topic and allaying outstanding concerns. Towards that end, we assembled a worldwide team this past weekend to investigate and develop a driver update to improve the power draw. We’re pleased to report that this driver-Radeon Software 16.7.1-is now undergoing final testing and will be released to the public in the next 48 hours.

In this driver we’ve implemented a change to address power distribution on the Radeon RX 480 – this change will lower current drawn from the PCIe bus.

Separately, we’ve also included an option to reduce total power with minimal performance impact. Users will find this as the “compatibility” UI toggle in the Global Settings menu of Radeon Settings. This toggle is “off” by default.

Finally, we’ve implemented a collection of performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

AMD is committed to delivering high quality and high performance products, and we’ll continue to provide users with more control over their product’s performance and efficiency. We appreciate all the feedback so far, and we’ll continue to bring further performance and performance/W optimizations to the Radeon RX 480.

Resident Evil 4 Arriving On Xbox One And PlayStation 4, August 30th 2016 (video)

Resident Evil 4 Arriving On Xbox One And PlayStation 4

Resident Evil fans that enjoyed playing game number four in the ongoing series, will be pleased to know that the iconic game will be available to play on both next-generation consoles from August 30th, 2016 onwards.

After first originally being released back in 2005, next month the Resident Evil 4 game will be available to play on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Check out the Resident Evil 4 Ultimate HD Edition PC trailer to whet your appetite a little more to remind yourself of the storyline if you have played it before.

One of the greatest video games of all time is coming soon to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Leon S. Kennedy’s intense mission to save the President’s daughter is a turning point in the 20-year-old horror franchise, and the title’s arrival on modern consoles is the perfect opportunity for fans to remember why it has stood the test of time, or for the uninitiated to learn where all the accolades come from.

Resident Evil 4, evolved the horror series’ formula in an exciting new direction, empowering players with unprecedented third-person aiming precision while defending themselves against hordes of clever new enemies called Ganados. Players could trip enemies with shots to the legs, or dial in headshots – sometimes with surprising and deadly results. Deep customization options permeate through the game, including a wide variety of fully upgradeable weapons, like pistols, shotguns, and rifles.

This potent combination of exotic weaponry and dynamic enemy encounters is part of why RE4 was not only incredibly innovative for the wider video game industry, but has stood the test of time. There are many examples of paradigm-shifting video games throughout history, but not all of them have the benefit of being as fun to play today as when they first released. Resident Evil 4 is one of the best examples of this rarity.


Pokemon Go Fans Told Not to Play in US Holocaust Museum

Pokemon Go Fans Told Not to Play in US Holocaust Museum

The US Holocaust Memorial Museum has told Pokemon Go fans not to play the popular new mobile game in its premises, describing it as “extremely inappropriate” in a memorial dedicated to the victims of Nazism.

The game involves using a mobile device to find and capture virtual Pokemon characters at real life locations, including apparently inside the Washington-based museum.

The idea of players roaming its halls, eyes glued to phones in search of the computerized figures, shocked many after an image was posted online showing one of the characters located outside the doors to the museum’s Helena Rubinstein Auditorium.

“We are attempting to have the museum removed from the game,” themuseum’s communications director, Andy Hollinger, said in a statement.

The museum encourages visitors to use their mobile phones to share and engage with exhibits while visiting, he added.

“Technology can be an important learning tool, but this game falls far outside of our educational and memorial mission,” Hollinger said.

During a visit to the museum on Tuesday, a Reuters reporter saw various visitors using phones to take photos or send messages, but no one obviously playing games. That included the area outside the Helena Rubinstein Auditorium, which features recorded testimonies from Jews who survived the gas chambers.

Niantic, the game’s creator, did not respond to requests for comment about the museum’s complaint.

Interest in Pokemon Go has surged since its release last week. The game was the most downloaded free app on Apple’s app store, while Nintendo shares surged nearly 25 percent on Monday for their biggest daily gains ever based on its success.

On Tuesday, a Democratic US senator asked Niantic to clarify the game’s data privacy protections, amid concerns it was unnecessarily collecting lots of user data.

Gears of War 4 to Get Special Edition Xbox One S Console

Gears of War 4 to Get Special Edition Xbox One S Console
  • Gears of War 4 will get a special editon Xbox One S
  • It will sport the same design as the controller shown at E3 2016
  • Gears of War 4’s release date is October 11 this year

Gears of War 4 is possibly the biggest Xbox One and Windows 10 game this year what with Microsoft making it available to both via the Xbox Play Anywhere program for digital copies. However it seems that aside from having the option of buying the game on disc, Xbox One fans have something else to look forward to – a special edition console.

According to NeoGAF user ekim, who has a solid track record on Microsoft related leaks, you can expect a limited edition Xbox One S console for Gears of War 4.

“So you guys remember the Gears Of War Elite Controller that was announced at E3?,” he askedfollowing up with:

“If you like that design, you might like the Xbox One S GoW [Gears of War] Limited Edition. :)”

This should come as no surprise considering that previous entries in the series have received their own console variants. And while ekim has no concrete idea as to when it would be officially announced, hebelieves there’s a good chance it could be revealed in August.

An Xbox One S for Gears of War 4 is apt, what with the game’s studio head Rod Fergusson stating you can expect improved visuals and a more consistent frame rate on the Xbox One S over the Xbox One. And while Xbox boss Phil Spencer has flip flopped on this, multiple sources have confirmed that this is indeed the case.

Don’t expect Gears of War 4 to be in native 4K for Project Scorpio though. “We have to look at what the engine can do with the power that Scorpio has,” said Fergusson to Polygon. “Because we’re mastering at 4K, it’s not about assets or art. It’s about getting the milliseconds down in terms of getting the game to 4K at 60 or 30 [fps]depending on single-player or multiplayer.”

No Man’s Sky Is Ready for Release

No Man's Sky Is Ready for Release
  • Development on No Man’s Sky is complete
  • The game is being prepared for release on disc and digital platforms
  • No Man’s Sky’s India release date is August 10

Development on space exploration survival game No Man’s Sky is complete. The game is ready to be put on disc and be prepared for digital release, more commonly known by the term “gone gold”.

The news comes via the Twitter account of Hello Games’ founder Sean Murray.

It’s happened. No Man’s Sky just went gold. I’m so incredibly proud of this tiny team. 4 years of emotions,” Murray tweeted.

What this means is, you can expect No Man’s Sky to meet its August 10 release date for India, along with its August 9 and August 12 launches in the US and UK respectively.

On the PS4, the game will set you back by Rs. 3,499 digitally and Rs. 3,999 if you’re buying a physical copy. The Limited Edition is for $80 (around Rs. 5,371) and considering that other Sony titles like Uncharted 4 aren’t seeing special variants hit India, it’s safe to say that the No Man’s Sky Limited Edition will skip the country as well.

And if the PS4 isn’t your gaming machine of choice, there’s an elaborate PC version as well. Dubbed the No Man’s Sky Explorer’s Edition comes with a replica ship, decals, pins, and well, a code for redeeming the game instead of a disc. It’s being made and sold by UK boutique creative outfit iam8bit and costs $149.99 (roughly Rs. 10,000).

no_mans_sky_explorer_edition.jpgThe standard edition of the game on PC is digital only and available for pre-order on Steam for Rs. 1,799. If you like your games DRM-free, it’s on GOG as well albeit for $60 (approximately Rs. 4,030). The minimum system requirements are as follows:

  • OS: Windows 7
  • Processor: Intel Core i3
  • Memory: 8GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 480
  • Storage: 10GB available space

From what we’ve seen, No Man’s Sky has you going where every sci-fi loving fan has gone before – space. This time however you’re exploring its depths minus any heavy-handed direction, trying-too-hard-to-be witty sayings, or any of the other tropes we’re tired of from slew of sci-fi movies and games we’ve been treated to. In their place is a gorgeous galaxy that has you exploring planets galore, each of which has its own unique environment and creatures. It’s been often delayed but always present at each of Sony’s events. Looks like we won’t have to wait too long to give it a go.

Do Not Come Looking for Pikachu in Our Police Station

Cops to Pokemon Fans: Do Not Come Looking for Pikachu in Our Police Station
  • Nintendo’s Pokemon Go was launched on Wednesday
  • It is currently available in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and US
  • It is an augmented reality game to catch Pokemons

The new smartphone app Pokemon Go begins with a warning screen. For a video game, it is an unusual sort of disclaimer. It is not a parental heads-up about critter-on-critter violence. Nor is it an echo of the recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics that kids should limit their gaming to about two hours daily.

Pokemon Go simply wants its players to avoid physical trauma.

Pokemon Go is a departure from previous iterations of the fantasy bug-collecting sim. Played on a smartphone screen in lieu of a Game Boy or other handheld console, Pokemon Go uses cameras and GPS to construct an augmented reality in which collectible 3D monsters float over physical locales.

To collect these digital critters you have get off the couch, get outside and track them down.

A land-dwelling Pikachu might hang out at the base of, say, the Washington Monument, while trainers (the term for those who play the game) might have to trot over to the Lincoln Memorial’s reflecting pool to capture the fishy creature Magikarp. Digital Pokemon infest buildings, too. The bullish Tauros rampaged through The Washington Post’s break room early Thursday morning.

The team behind Pokemon Go – developers Niantic Labs and video game giant Nintendo – is concerned you might walk off a bridge, for instance, while you are engrossed in a real-world hunt for the digital critters. Recognizing that the app, which launched in the United States late Wednesday, may encourage the sort of obliviousness that comes when noses are buried in smartphones, other groups began issuing their own warnings, too.

So far, the admonitions have been cheeky: Pokemon Go depicts danger as a cartoon sea serpent. On Facebook, an Australian police force asked Pokemon Go trainers not to burst into stations despite the urge to collect ’em all.

“The novelty of seeing a Pokemon superimposed onto your sidewalk is delightful,” wrote The Post’s Hayley Tsukayama, who recently reviewed an early version of the game. (Though certain features, she said, like monster battles, left something to be desired.) Pokemon Go has the potential to be immensely popular, as it is Nintendo’s first smartphone app to showcase the 20-year-old franchise. The early interest, at least, seems promising; it had been downloaded in the United States at least 50 thousand times within the first 12 hours, according to a ticker at the Google Play store.

Pokemon Go’s interface, akin to Google Maps, is littered with Pokestops – specific landmarks where players collect game-boosting items. That the Darwin Police Station is one such landmark prompted a Facebook message from Australia’s Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services: “For those budding Pokemon Trainers out there using Pokemon Go — whilst the Darwin Police Station may feature as a Pokestop, please be advised that you don’t actually have to step inside in order to gain the pokeballs,” the agency wrote.

A representative for the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency services told The Post by phone that one of its officers downloaded the game, and then recommended the Facebook message. It was a bit of a joke, she said, as no one has yet to enter the Darwin Police Station in pursuit of Poke balls or Pikachu.

But players would be wise to exercise caution in their quest to be a Pokemon master. Niantic Labs pioneered its location-based gaming technology with “Ingress,” an area-control mobile game in which players capture portals (similar to Pokemon Go’s Pokestops and gyms). “Ingress” has attracted players by the millions, according to a Niantic blog post from Wednesday, and some “have literally traveled to the ends of the earth” to capture portals.

As “Ingress” grew in popularity, some players admitted to taking risks like playing in cars, near sinkholes or too close to bicycle lanes. The game has been associated with at least one death. A 48-year-old Irish man lost his life while on a nocturnal mission to capture a portal near a pier last September, according to a Dublin inquest.

“The pier is open at both sides, the surface was uneven, it was night time, there are no lights, it was in the course of this game Ingress,” the coroner said, according to the Irish Times. Niantic Labs has since removed the portal near the pier.

As the Australian police organization pointed out on Facebook, players should navigate augmented worlds just as carefully as vanilla realities. “That Sandshrew isn’t going anywhere fast,” they wrote. “Stay safe and catch ’em all.”

Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Announced, Available from July 19

Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Announced, Available from July 19 Priced at Rs. 22,999
  • Nvidia promises performance matching that of the GeForce GTX 980
  • The GTX 1060 will compete head-to-head with AMD’s Radeon RX 480
  • GTX 1060 graphics cards are aimed at value-conscious gamers

Nvidia has announced its new GeForce GTX 1060 GPU, aimed at mainstream gamers. Graphics cards based on the new GTX 1060 will be available worldwide from partner companies including Asus, MSI, Gigabyte and Zotac on July 19. There will be only one configuration featuring 6GB of GDDR5 RAM. Pricing in the US is $249 (approximately Rs. 16,858) but the official price in India has not been announced yet. We can expect it to be considerably higher to account for import duties and distribution costs.

The new GeForce GTX 1060 comes hot on the heels of Nvidia’s high-end GTX 1080 and GTX 1070 GPUs, and seems to be aimed at the same market segment as AMD’s new Radeon RX 480. The timing of the launch, and of earlier leaks, could be a direct shot at AMD. Interestingly, the Radeon RX 480 with 4GB of RAM is priced $50 lower in the USA at $199, but AMD’s higher overheads give Nvidia a decisive advantage here in India. However, the GTX 1060’s price could make it less popular than its predecessor, the GTX 960 which sells for under Rs. 18,000.

Gamers will benefit from the same Pascal architecture that the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070 are based on, although the actual GPU is a smaller unit codenamed GP106, rather than the GP104 which the other two are based on. The GTX 1060 has 1280 programmable graphics processing units and can run at up to 1.7GHz when under full load. The 6GB of GDDR5 memory has a 192-bit pathway to the GPU, resulting in memory bandwidth of up to 8Gbps. The maximum power draw is rated at 120W, and cards featuring Nvidia’s reference cooler will have a single 6-pin PCIe connector.

nvidia_geforce_gtx1060_specs_nvidia.jpgMost notably, the GeForce GTX 1060 dispenses with SLI connectors altogether. Nvidia had de-emphasised SLI with the launch of the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070, first saying enthusiasts would need a special key to unlock it, and then limiting it to two cards down from four. Now, the company says its research shows that only a miniscule number of people ever used SLI on mid-range cards, and it believes that one GTX 1060 delivers enough performance on its own.

Nvidia will offer a Founders’ Edition version of the GTX 1060, but it has a simple plastic shroud and blower fan rather than the elaborate metal vapour-chamber cooler that gives the GTX 1080 Founders’ Edition its premium pricing. It will be available only in France, Germany and the UK, directly through Nvidia’s online store, priced at EUR 319/GBP 275. Partner companies will offer GTX 1060 cards with their own custom cooler and PCB designs, not Founders’ Editions with their own branding, as is the case with the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070.

GTX 1060 cards will have three DisplayPort 1.4 outputs as well as a single HDMI 2.0b port and one dual-link DVI-D port by default. Partners might change this arrangement around on their custom designs, with extra HDMI outputs most likely replacing DisplayPort to allow users to connect a VR headset and monitor at the same time.

GeForce_GTX_1060_Back_nvidia.jpgNvidia’s new Pascal architecture, which underpins the entire GeForce 10-series, is the company’s first on a new 16nm process, which results in greatly improved performance and lower power consumption than previous offerings. Pascal has also been designed to enable simultaneous multi-projection which allows for multiple perspectives of the same scene to be rendered in one pipeline pass, greatly improving performance for VR and multi-monitor experiences. SMP support is built into the Unreal 4 and Unity engines, and will be coming to over 30 titles including Obduction, Raw Data, Unreal Tournament, and Adr1ft.

The company also points out that the Ansel screen capture feature which debuted with the more expensive cards is also fully supported, and will debut in July with The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst.

Nvidia promises equal or greater performance from the GTX 1060 as from last year’s GeForce GTX 980, plus significant overclocking potential. Stay tuned for a full review once these cards are available in the market.

US FTC Cracks Down on Warner Bros for Sponsored YouTube Game Reviews

US FTC Cracks Down on Warner Bros for Sponsored YouTube Game Reviews

Video games are a big deal on YouTube. Some video game YouTubers have millions of followers who tune in to watch them review games and have turned their channels into full-time jobs. But it can be hard for viewers to tell when video makers are getting paid big bucks to promote a game – and now government regulators are cracking down on those poorly disclosed deals.

The Federal Trade Commission announced Monday that it has reached a settlement with Warner Bros. Home Entertainment over what the agency deemed a deceptive marketing campaign for the 2014 game “Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor,” which involved major payoffs to big names in the world ofYouTube gaming in exchange for positive coverage.

Warner Bros., the FTC alleges, paid popular YouTubers tens of thousands of dollars to promote the game via a campaign managed by advertising company Plaid Social Labs. The blitz included a sponsored gameplay video from PewDiePie – one of the biggest names on YouTube. PewDiePie’s video alone has attracted more than 3.7 million views to date.

middle_earth_wb_fb.jpgWarner Bros. gave YouTubers strict instructions to say only positive things about the game and stay silent about bugs they encountered, according to the FTC. Its contracts with the vloggers also demanded preapproval of the videos, the agency alleges.

But the company didn’t make the YouTubers disclose that they were paid to promote the game in their actual videos, where viewers would actually see them, according to the FTC. Instead, it told them to include a disclosure in the video description, but below a lot of other information that pushed “the vast majority” of the sponsorship disclosures down so far that they could be seen only if a viewer hit a “Show More” button.

Because of that placement, the disclosures also didn’t show up when the YouTubers shared their videos on Twitter or Facebook – social media promotion the company also required them to do, according to the FTC. And in some cases, the disclosures included way down in the descriptions of videos revealed only that a YouTuber had received a free early copy of the game, not that they’d been paid cash to make what was essentially an ad, the FTC alleges.

Under the settlement agreement, Warner Bros. will be barred from carrying out that sort of campaign in the future without more prominent disclosures.

“Consumers have the right to know if reviewers are providing their own opinions or paid sales pitches,” said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, in a press release. Warner Bros. did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the settlement.

The FTC has long had guidelines for how people should disclose when they have been paid to endorse a product online, but this settlement marks the first time the agency has brought an enforcement action in the online video sponsorship market. Given the major push towards livestreaming from social media giants like Facebook and Twitter, it probably won’t be its last.

Pokemon Go’s Unofficial Chat App Is Struggling to Keep Up With Massive Load

Pokemon Go's Unofficial Chat App Is Struggling to Keep Up With Massive Load

  • GoChat helps finding nearby PokeStops and Pokemon
  • The app lets you send direct messages to other players in game
  • GoChat for Pokemon Go works as a cross-platform app

Pokemon Go has been a runaway success and no matter where you go, you will find people playing the game and trying to catch ’em all. One feature that has been missing from Pokemon Go is in-game chat. There is no way for people to talk to each other by sending messages or posting in bulletin boards.

GoChat for Android and iOS aims to solve this precise problem by allowing Pokemon Trainers to talk to each other. It helps people devise game tactics, talk to gym leaders, and inform people about the exact whereabouts of various Pokemon and PokeStops. Just like the game, the chat is location-based and allows you to only read the posts that are around your area and asks you to get closer to the area in case you are too far in order to read the posts.

The GoChat messaging service also allows you to create your own profile and add friends to it. You can also send direct messages to Gym trainers or other friends that you have added to the profile.

The app is currently available on iOS as well as Android and works as a cross-platform app that allows you to message someone irrespective of the platform both GoChat is being used on.

The messaging app is just one of the several unofficial companion apps Pokemon Go has given birth to, apps that are trying to bask-in some of the glory that the game is getting around the world.

Even though Pokemon is only available officially in three countries, according to analytics firm SimilarWeb, the game has found itself on more devices than Tinder.

Coming back to GoChat, the app was created by first-time developer Jonathan Zarra. Speaking to The Verge, Zarra said the app already has nearly a million users within five days of launch, and its servers are getting nearly 600 requests per second. The app is also amongst the top searched apps on the App Store, and amongst the top most downloaded apps.

Zarra admits GoChat, which was launched on July 4 just before Pokemon Go, is struggling to handle the massive load – leading to frequent crashes and new users being unable to register for the service. He’s looking to upgrade the back-end of the app, and The Verge cites Zarra’s contractor to say the new servers will cost roughly $4,000(around Rs. 2,68,000 rupees). Zarra says he has no intention of bringing ads to the app, making breaking even an unrealistic goal.

GoChat’s developer refused to say how much he’s spent on the app so far, but added that monetising the app may invite litigation from the Pokemon Company. Zarra said he is speaking with investors on how to keep the app solvent.

Pokemon Go Is Installed on More Android Phones Than Tinder

Pokemon Go Is Installed on More Android Phones Than Tinder: Report

  • As per SimilarWeb, Pokemon Go will have more daily users than Twitter
  • The game is used more than WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger
  • It is yet to release outside Australia, New Zealand, and the US

It’s no surprise that Pokemon Go has taken the world by storm even though it is only available officially in three countries. According to analytics firm SimilarWeb, the game has found itself on more devices than some of the most popular apps around.

“On July 8th, only 2 days after the app’s release, it was already installed on 5.16 percent of all Android devices in the US. If that doesn’t seem like much, consider that by Thursday, July 7th, Pokemon Go was already installed on more US Android phones than Tinder,” a post from the company claims.

Furthermore, the user engagement on Pokemon Go has been extremely high as well.

“Over 60 percent of those who have downloaded the app in the US are using it daily, meaning around 3 percent of the entire US Android population are users of the app,” the company’s post continues. It’s reaching a point where it could rival the likes of Twitter. So much so that SimilarWeb believes that Pokemon Go is “neck and neck with Twitter, and in a few more days, Pokémon Go will likely have more users Daily Active Users than the well-established social network.”

Another reason for this is the traffic towards third party file sites like APKMirror. SimilarWeb claims that since Pokemon Go’s release traffic spiked for the site tremendously. It increased from 600,000 visits on July 5 to over four million on July 6 with 30.5 percent of all desktop search traffic over a 28 day period having the term “pokemon” in it.

And it’s this high volume of search and installs that has resulted in an equally large amount of usage time. Pokemon Go was being used for an average of 43 minutes and 23 seconds a day as of July 8, putting it higher than Whatsapp, Instagram, Snapchat, and Messenger.

While a large chunk of this activity around Pokemon Go has been driven by curiosity for the franchise’s first proper mobile outing, it will be interesting to see if Niantic and the Pokemon Company can sustain its popularity in the weeks to come. If you want to see what the fuss is about, check out our guide onhow to download the game for Android.