Company of Heroes 2

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"Company of Heroes 2" Gets Chilly

Makers of upcoming World War II-era strategy game “Company of Heroes 2” have announced an innovative cold-weather feature that will simulate what it’s like to be caught in an extreme winter in Russia in 1941.

At super subzero temps, human skin freezes in a matter of minutes, something that is portrayed in the game. On winter maps, infantry units exposed to the bitter cold will gradually freeze to death unless the player keeps them warm by building fires and garrisoning them in buildings. Dynamic blizzards will also increase the effects of extreme cold, making it even more hazardous to leave infantry in the open.

Snow also has realistic depth which actually impacts troop movement and will retain persistent infantry and vehicle tracks throughout the match unless covered by fresh snowfall.

No word yet on whether or not you’ll be able to have a big snowball fight or make snow angels with your troops, but one thing is for sure, you better bundle up before you play “Company of Heroes 2” -- coming to PC in early 2013.

First Look at NHL '13 Gameplay

It’s hard to think about hockey with ice-melting temperatures outside, but we’re ready for all things puck after seeing EA Sports’ first gameplay video of “NHL 13.” In it, producer Ben Ross shows off the game and some of the new features on tap for this year’s edition. That includes True Performance Skating in which EA claims they’ve authentically replicated the explosiveness, momentum and top-end speed displayed by today’s NHL players. It’s especially cool that you’re now able to backwards skate at any time.

The video also shows off the new Hockey I.Q. system, which means the computer controller players are quicker, smarter and display more true-to-life decision-making. “NHL 13” is skating our way on Sept. 11.

Review: Wreckateer

There apparently is no such thing as a goblin fumigator for castles in Medieval times. So the solution to get rid of the menacing hordes of creatures is to send cannonballs in to destroy the castles where they’ve infested. That’s the concept behind “Wreckateer,” an Xbox 360 Kinect game that could be summed up as the popular mobile game “Angry Birds” meets "Lord of the Rings."

Though its controls aren’t perfect, Iron Galaxy Studios’ “Wreckateer” wisely asks you to perform only the most basic of motions -- a hand wave here or a swipe there -- to maneuver several types of specialized cannonballs into one of the game’s destructible 60 castles. For the Basic Shot, you simply aim and shoot -- with the option of slapping at the ball in the air to help guide it along. Others include a Speed Shot and a Flying Shot that you can guide by tilting your outstretched arms.

And like “Angry Birds,” the addictive physics-based game of destruction that “Wreckateer” apes, busting up buildings and shooting to the top of leaderboards depends on a satisfying mixture of strategy, skill and luck.

Follow Ryan Smith on Twitter @RyanSmithWriter for more news and updates.

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