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The question on every good Viking’s mind is usually something along the lines of “where, among the screeching inhabitants of this unfortunate coastal citing coming into view, might the shiny stuff be?” or, on a related note, something like “What’s the best pointy, choppy, or smash-ey thing I can use to relieve said screeching inhabitants of their bothersome tether to this mortal plane?”

Luckily, we can help you with the latter — but the first one’s up to you. Down below we’ll go over some of the very best weapons in AC Valhalla, what makes them great, what makes them better, and how to get them.

AC Valhalla Best Weapons

Mournful Cry

Mournful Cry is a hammer that poisons foes on critical hit — something that, when built for specifically, can be procced with ease. Unlike the other AC Valhalla poison weapon, Doppelhander, Mournful Cry requires less of a setup and can be used to poison multiple enemies in quick succession.

Weapon Location

Mournful Cry can be purchased from Reda’s Shop, which is unlocked as part of the Thousand Eyes questline. It appears randomly, so be sure to check frequently and that you have 120 silver for it in the event that it shows up, otherwise, well…

Key Skills


Complementary Melee Weapons

Varin’s Axe 

Suttungr’s Claw

Housecarl’s Axe

The Housecarl’s Axe is a straightforward, DPS-delight that raises attack with each successive hit. Each stack boosts attack 1.5, capping out at 15 across 10 stacks with a duration of 2s per stack — don’t worry though; it refreshes with each proc. The Housecarl’s Axe is a great starting point for many an axe build, and pairs well with just about anything.

Weapon Location

The Housecarl’s Axe is found in a chest inside an enemy camp in the Northwest of Middletun and can be obtained relatively early game. Look for the camp on the eastern coastline of the larger island directly east of the Middletun label. Get ready to kill plenty of people, but know that it is very much worth it for the one of the best weapons in AC Valhalla.

Key Skills

Adrenaline Fiend

Adrenaline Upgrade

Complementary Melee Weapons

Varin’s Axe

Mournful Cry

Suttungr’s Claw


Kopis is, without a doubt, one of AC Valhalla’s best weapons and the closest thing to real life-steal you’ll get in the game. The dagger restores 10% of your health on critical hit — a pretty substantial free lunch once you build for crit specifically. Rocking a Mentor’s or Thegn’s set, pairing it with Hundtoth, and starting the fight with Skadi’s Wrath primes you to be an effectively immortal DPS-machine.

Weapon Location

You’ll be rewarded with the Kopis for completing the Suthsexe Storyline, so just keep on the bloody, Viking warpath and you’ll eventually find it by your side.

Key Skills

Adrenaline Fiend

Adrenaline Upgrade

Berserker’s Mettle

Complementary Melee Weapons


Fyrd Axe

Suttungr’s Claw

Skadi’s Wrath

Skadi’s Wrath is, by far, one of the most potent Light Bows in all of AC Valhalla. With a substantial 15 crit-chance buff for hitting weak points that lasts 10 whole seconds, the weapon is as capable of mowing down enemies on its lonesome as it is priming enemies for a devastating, crit-boosted melee followup. Skadi’s Wrath pairs extremely well with any weapon with on-crit proc effects.

Weapon Location

You can find Skadi’s Wrath in a chest at the bottom of a basement just south of Ledecestre City.

Key Skills

Light Bow Combo

Bow to Melee Link

Complementary Weapons

Mournful Cry


Shishi Guard

The Shishi Guard is one of the best shields in AC Valhalla for the sleep-bomb it detonates after five blocked attacks — essentially creating free kills whenever you proc it. It pairs extraordinarily well with other shields for running a double-shield build by synergizing with other effects that proc on the fifth attack, allowing players to round out their offensive output.

Weapon Location

Like the Kopis, the Shishi Guard will basically fall into your lap by following the main story quests. Without revealing anything else, just know that if you’re interested in running a Shishi Guard build, try to have the rest of your gear ready by the time you’re heading for Cyne Belle Castle in Oxenefordscire.

Key Skills

Adrenaline Fiend

Adrenaline Upgrade

Berserker’s Mettle

Complementary Weapons

Hrafn Guard

Spartan Shield

Fafnir’s Fang

Weapon Location

To obtain Fafnir’s Fang, you’ll have to head to a cave in Hildesvini’s Crag over in Rygjafylke and defeat the enemy there, The Lost Drengr. It’s a potentially challenging fight for early game players but is certainly doable.

Key Skills

Heavy Dual Wield

Miasma (if running Mournful Cry with it)

Complementary Weapons

Mournful Cry


Cadfarch Spear


Endgame Weapons


Mjolnir. It’s just Mjolnir — you know, Thor’s hammer. What else do you need to do? Aside from the fact that it’s, again, Thor’s actual Hammer, Mjolnir is one of the “extra special” weapons of AC Valhalla that can only be obtained following the completion of the main story quest. Even so, Mjolnir is well worth the wait for the AoE stun effect it has a chance to proc every hit. Aside from the immense power of the weapon itself, it also sports the unique visual effects of lightning bolts and increased size when drawn.

Weapon Location

Getting Mjolnir in AC Valhalla (alongside Thor’s Armor) takes a couple steps. Thankfully, we simplified it for you!

Key Skills


Complementary Weapons

Varin’s Axe


Excalibur is another endgame weapon with a uniquely powerful passive effect: an AoE blind upon heavy finishers and criticals. Indeed, one fell swoop of the mighty Excalibur can be all it takes to turn every enemy around you into proverbial fish in a barrel. To make betterOn top of that incredible weapon effect, Excalibur also sports some of the highest base stats in the game, meaning it simply hits hard — harder even, if you’re hitting an Englishman (figuratively). Just imagine being killed by a Viking wielding King Arthur’s sword. It’d be like the Joker murdering you with a Bat-shaped shuriken.

Weapon Location

Like Mjolnir, Excalibur is quite a task to obtain but one we already figured out for you!

Key Skills



Gungnir, or Odin’s Spear, is the main weapon of the Norse pantheon’s head honcho, Odin — or Old One-Eye as nobody likes to call him. Rather than a glorious proc-effect or tremendous stat boost, what makes Gungnir sickeningly OP is simply a little extra length. Indeed, its “effect” is increased range by way of a dazzling force-field that lets you poke holes in people from the other side of the room, and do so with enormously powerful stats.

Weapon Location

Rather than spoiling what is a theatrical episode in AC Valhalla, we’ll just give you a link you to a video with a SPOILER WARNING. 

Key Skills

Heavy Dual-Wield

Complementary Weapons

Fafnir’s Fang

Any of the other two endgame weapons, just to laugh with bloodchilling glee as you rain unholy destruction down upon English.


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Top Early Game Deals Out Now

Top Early Game Deals Out Now Games are on fire right now! Expand your library with these deals




There are so many awesome games out there that most of us didn’t get the chance to try.

Either they’re too pricey or you still haven’t gotten around to them yet, now’s your chance.

A lot of great titles are on early Black Friday sales and it’s worth checking out what some retailers offer.



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On the off chance your gaming library is running out of appealing options for you to try and you were on the hunt for a bargain, there’s some good news.

Some of the titles you really wanted lately are now on sale and it’s the perfect moment to add them to your collection for a reduced price.

Especially since it’s not even Christmas yet, so these early deals can help shorten up the list you prepared for this year’s shopping spree.

What games are on early sale right now?

Let’s start with a game that, although went through a bit of a rough patch, we’re sure everyone still wants to play. Well, if you want it for your Xbox One or Series X/S, you’ll save a pretty penny.

Build your reputation as a cyberpunk, an urban mercenary with cybernetic enhancements on Cyberpunk 2077. So, if this is a title you were waiting on, this is your chance.

However, if you really desire this game in your collection, now’s the time to act on it, because you can cop it for only half the price it initially went for.

Become an original Special Forces Operator in an online Multiplayer rich in innovation with 20 maps available at launch.

Call of Duty Vanguard can be yours for a massive discount, so there really is little time to wait. As you can imagine, everyone wants to get their hands on this new title, so time is really of the essence.

Call of Duty: Vanguard – PlayStation 5

This is the most connected Call of Duty ever, all powered by the next generation Call of Duty engine introduced in Modern Warfare.

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Fire up a wild ride across the cosmos with a fresh take on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. And because outer space rides are very expensive, you can pay half of the price for the game.

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy – Xbox Series X

You play as Star-Lord, so nothing’s off-limits with your bold combat style, from Element Blasters and jet boot-powered dropkicks to tag-team beat-downs.

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We’re not sure if you will believe us or not, but the latest version of FIFA is available now for an unbelievable price. That’s right, if you were waiting for a bargain on this one, this Amazon deal should do the trick.

If you experience any issues with lag or stuttering while playing, we can show you how to fix them, whether you have a PC, Xbox, or PlayStation.

Also, if you require help deciding what icon cards or which youth players to buy, you can go ahead and check our dedicated articles for some assistance.

FIFA 22 PlayStation 4

How far do you think you can make it as a player or manager in the new FIFA 22 experience?

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Do you own a PlayStation 5? If you are also a FIFA fan, that means you will be looking to acquire the latest sports title from EA.

And what better time to get this done than on Black Friday & Cyber Monday? That’s right if you want to get your hands on the PS5 version of FIFA 22, you can save $34.99.

FIFA 22 – PlayStation 5

HyperMotion gameplay technology elevates every match across every mode, so you can become the champion you were meant to be.

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If FIFA is more your thing, but still hasn’t had the opportunity to try FIFA 21 at all, this is a great chance to add this awesome title to your collection.

The standard version of the sports game package is more than 50% off nowadays, so during this early sale, you can actually cop it at an incredible price.

FIFA 21 Standard Edition – Xbox Series X/S

Join your friends and other tens of millions of people in becoming one of the best football players or managers that the world has ever seen.

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New tactical offense meets an overhauled defense for a more competitive and immersive NBA 2K22.

Add skill-based dribbling, shooting, dunking, and alley-oops to your bag of moves, and counter them with ferocious new blocks and contests on the other end of the court.

Fulfill your dream of creating the greatest dynasty ever to play the game and also save some money in the process.

NBA 2K22 – Xbox One

NBA 2K22 puts the entire basketball universe in your hands. Anyone anywhere can hoop in NBA 2K22.

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Here’s a great choice that you can gift to your kids, or anyone else who’s still a child at heart and would enjoy this silly fighting game.

With a power-packed cast of heroes from the top shows within the Nickelodeon universe, face-off with all-stars from SpongeBob Squarepants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Loud House, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, Avatar, The Wild Thornberrys, Hey Arnold!, Rugrats, and many more to determine ultimate dominance.

With unique move sets and attacks drawn directly from their identifiable personalities, each character has its own style of play enabling endless hours of enjoyable action for Nickelodeon’s legion of fans.

NBA 2K22 Playstation 4

The PS4-compatible version of the NBA 2k22 lets you play in real NBA and WNBA environments. It’s filled with new exciting features that make it more immersive than previous developments.

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This is a suitable game for children of all ages, allowing you to truly live the basketball dream.

You can create your own character with a lot of customization options.

Besides basketball, there are a lot of side ventures that players can explore. The game lets you truly build an individual story for each character and watch it as it progresses.

The game has been published in partnership with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, and both studios aim to bring the definitive next-gen co-op zombie shooter to players with Back 4 Blood.

You have the opportunity to save 30% during this early sale if you want to take it for a test run on your PS5. And preorders give you access to the open beta one week early.

Back 4 Blood – PlayStation 5

Back 4 Blood is a brand-new, cooperative, zombie-slaying first-person shooter title from Turtle Rock Studios, the creators of the critically acclaimed Left 4 Dead titles.

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Structures and buildings in the central village can be climbed and used to fight enemies, so keep that in mind if you want to try Village.

Compared to Biohazard, this game is more action-focused, with protagonist Ethan Winters now equipped with more combat skills due to military training.

So if you want to embark on this epic campaign against evil, this is your chance to pick this title up and become the savior.

Resident Evil Village – Xbox Series X

Resident Evil Village uses a first-person perspective. It is set in a snowy explorable Eastern European village, described as pulled straight from the Victorian era and much larger and immersive than its predecessor.

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Mud, Blood, and steel await as you challenge opponents with your katana for an immersive Samurai combat experience.

Play with friends and become legends together via online matchmaking in a series of two-player story missions or four-player wave-based survival missions in the legends online co-op

Oh, and the best part is that you get to save $20 on Ghost of Tsushima if you go to Amazon right now.

Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Cut – PlayStation 5

Roam vast countryside and expansive terrain to encounter rich characters, discover ancient landmarks and uncover the hidden beauty of Tsushima.

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Explore beautiful, historic Britain, and discover lakes, valleys, castles, and breathtaking scenery in stunning HDR and native 4K on Xbox One.

Collect, modify and drive over 450 cars, and enjoy a large and diverse Horizon car roster, including over 100 licensed manufacturers.

And, because exotic cars are very expensive, you can take a break from the game and appreciate the graphics, such as the different terrain and vegetation, or the beautiful accurate landscape.

Forza Horizon 4 – Xbox One

Go alone or team up with others to explore beautiful and historic Britain in a shared open world.

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Fight iconic mythological beasts like Cyclops and Medusa in dynamic combat in the air and on the ground. Use your skills and diverse weapons, including self-guided arrows, Telekinesis, and more, for devastating damage.

So, just in case you haven’t yet moved on from the God of War experience, this one is right up that alley.

You can save a pretty penny if you decide to cop it now so don’t think too much about it, because it might be too late.

Immortals Fenyx Rising – PlayStation 5

Wield the powers of the Gods like Achilles’ Sword and Daidalos’ Wings to battle powerful enemies and solve ancient puzzles.

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As the immortal Prince of the Underworld, you’ll wield the powers and mythic weapons of Olympus to break free from the clutches of the god of the dead himself, while growing stronger and unraveling more of the story with each unique escape attempt.

The multi-award-winning game Hades has earned #1 Best PlayStation 5 Game of 2023 and #1 Best Xbox Series X Game of 2023 on Metacritic.

Hades – Xbox One/Series X

New surprises await each time you delve into the ever-shifting Underworld, whose guardian bosses will remember you.

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Although based on the second film, the game’s story is a sequel to the Alien trilogy, set 23 years after the original films.

The player assumes the role of a Colonial Marine on board the UAS Endeavor, a spaceship tasked with responding to a distress call from the outer colonies.

Become a gunner, demolisher, technician, doc, or a second and engage in the four-story campaigns with three missions each.

Aliens Fireteam Elite – Xbox

Help your fireteam of hardened marines overcome all obstacles in their desperate fight to contain the evolving Xenomorph threat.

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Plan start fights with your squadron in the briefing room before taking off to the evolving battlefields across the galaxy.

Take control of different classes of starfighters from both the New Republic and Imperial fleets, such as the agile A-wing and devastating Tie bomber

Modify your ship, and unlock new components, such as weapons, hulls, engines, shields, and cosmetic items.

Expert tip:

Star Wars: Squadrons – PC

Buckle up for intergalactic pilot warfare in this digital download of Star Wars: Squadrons for PC.

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Here’s one that is beyond doubt on many people’s wishlists. There’s no denying that new games can be quite expensive most of the time, so sniping a great deal on one can be hard and also satisfying.

Far Cry 6 Standard Edition – PlayStation 5

Embark on an epic journey as a guerrilla fighting for freeing his country, Yara, from the communist’s grasp.

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Yes, even the Xbox version is on sale right now, and you can youse it on Series X/S, or on your Xbox One. This is the second available version of Far Cry 6.

What sets this one apart from the Standard Edition, is the fact that this one comes with the Season Pass, which includes three additional DLCs.

Far Cry 6 Xbox Series X/S/One – Gold Steelbook Edition

Twart the communist’s efforts to ensnare the Yaran people into a future of servitude, toil, and injustice.

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Even though Mortal Kombat 11 is not really a new game anymore, we know that there are still many that wish to add this spectacular fighting experience to their library.

Amazon has it on sale in a package that also includes the Aftermath DLC, among other goodies, for a reduced price. However, keep in mind that this is the Xbox One version, it’s not optimized for the Series X/s.

Mortal Kombat 11- Aftermath Kollection – Xbox One

Developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros, this fighting game will really push you to the edge.

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Personalize your character, then fight up-close and personal with melee swings, hang back with ranged attacks, or tank your way through swarms of mobs, shielded by heavy armor.

Yes, there are a lot of dungeons to explore here, but don’t be fooled because, as good as it looks, this is not Diablo 3, it’s actually Minecraft.

Gather your pixelated friends and conquer the most dangerous caverns and depths by working together.

Minecraft Dungeons Hero Edition – Xbox/PC

Power Up and unlock dozens of unique items and weapon enchantments for devastating special attacks.

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Nothing is ever as it seems, as Raven Software brings a gripping single-player Campaign where players will come face-to-face with historical figures and hard truths.

They have to battle around the globe through iconic locales like East Berlin, Vietnam, Turkey, Soviet KGB headquarters, and more.

Oh, and let’s not forget Black OpsCold War Zombies is set to take veterans and newcomers alike on a bold and terrifying journey that expands on an iconic part of the Call of Duty franchise.

This co-op mode includes new ways to progress, classic Perks, and an arsenal of Cold War-era Zombies weaponry that will help survivors dominate the legions of undead.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War – Cross-Gen Bundle

Developed by Treyarch and Raven Software and published by Activision, it features a seasonal content system similar to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2023).

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There’s no need to mention how many Elder Scrolls fans are out there, so this offer is for sure going to be to the liking of many users.

Just in case you wanted a more hands-on feel on Brad Pitt’s experience in World War Z, know that the game is now on sale and it’s going for a pretty good price.

World War Z Aftermath – Xbox One

World War Z: Aftermath is the ultimate co-op zombie shooter and the next evolution of the original hit World War Z that has now captivated over 15 million players.

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Whether you’re strategizing for a matchup in the redeveloped Franchise mode, going head-to-head in Play Now, or competing online in Madden Ultimate Team, you’ll feel Dynamic Gameday impact gameplay everywhere in Madden NFL 22.

This title is everything you love about the NFL injected into every mode via all-new Dynamic Gameday.

And we haven’t even gotten to the best part yet. If you decide to act now, you can save $25, which is a lot considering this is the latest game of the series.

Madden NFL 22 – PlayStation 5

Catch all the thrills of a fresh football season, because the quest for the Madden NFL 22 Championship Series crown starts now.

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This is a situation where you are going to get a lot of game for your buck. Definitely, one of the top contenders on this list, even though it’s not technically a new game anymore.

However, Red Dead Redemption 2, with its Store and Online modes, will keep you connected to the western-based fantasy world for a long time.

Red Dead Redemption 2 – Xbox One

Master all the techniques required to survive in the Wild West, and become one of the most feared outlaws.

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We know, we know, the sequel to this awesome and highly acclaimed title is almost out. But that’s not a valid reason to skip the first part if you haven’t already played it yet.

The Anniversary Edition for the first Dying Light, which is still a great game, is also on early sale and interested people can snipe this bargain from Amazon.

Dying Light Anniversary Edition – Xbox One

What would you really do if the end as you know it would come to be overrun by bloodthirsty zombies?

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This game really needs no introduction, as we are sure that absolutely everyone knows what GTA is and what playing this game means.

On the off-chance you postponed playing Grand Theft Auto 5, here’s a chance that is literally too good to pass. You can have this awesome title for way less than it;s worth.

Now that’s what we call a bargain. Of course, the game isn’t among the recently released ones, but it still looks and feels awesome, and there’s no sequel yet.

Grand Theft Auto V: Premium Edition – Xbox One

Do everything you can to keep growing your criminal enterprise and eliminate all the competition that stands in your way in Los Santos.

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Raid your enemies, grow your settlement, and build your political power in the quest to earn a place among the gods in Valhalla.

Remember that every choice you make in combat and conversation is another step on the path to greatness.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla – PlayStation 5

Set out on a quest for glory and explore a dynamic and beautiful open world set against the brutal backdrop of England’s Dark Ages.

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Are you looking for an escape and would like to relive the story of Goku in DRAGON BALL Z: KAKAROT?

Beyond the epic battles, experience life in the DRAGON BALL Z world as you fight, fish, eat and train with Goku.

Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot – Xbox One

Help the Sayian legend Son Goku defeat his foes and become the most powerful fighter in the entire universe.

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This early sale is for all the baseball fans out there that didn’t have the chance to try out The Show 21. Still a pricey game, even if it’s from last year, this tile is perfect for all those who enjoy quality time in the batting cage.

Now you can run the bases on all your favorite stadiums for 30% off because Amazon is ready to give it away for just a few pennies.

MLB The Show 21 Standard Edition – Xbox Series X

MLB The Show 21 does a great job of opening its pristine baseball simulator to a brand-new group of players as it arrives on Xbox for the first time.

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Ready to dive into this living, breathing ecosystem in which players take on the role of a hunter that seeks and slays ferocious beasts in heart-pounding battles?

Venture on quests alone or with up to three other hunters in a newly designed online drop-in multiplayer system that allows cross-region cooperative play between Japan and the West, uniting the global player base for the first time ever.

Monster Hunter World – Xbox One

In this game, you take the role of a Hunter tasked to hunt down and either kill or trap monsters that roam in one of several environmental spaces.

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Squad up with your friends and take on downhill races, dominate maps in team vs team competitions, or challenge yourself in PvP modes and Events. I

f you’re up for some insane action, throw yourself into mass races and be the first to cross the finish line or the last one standing.

There’s also a ton of exploration opportunities in this vibrant playground, objects to collect, spots to discover, stunt parks to ride, and mountain stories to achieve.

Riders Republic – PlayStation 5

Join a massive multiplayer community and participate in an avalanche of diverse activities as you shred the snow, mud, and dirt in real-time with others.

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If you were hypothetically stuck inside this game, which one of the available heroes would you pick as your avatar?

We anticipated that pretty much all of you will say Dwayne Jhonson (Dr. Bravestone), but the other characters also need to be played.

All-in-all, this is a fun way to spend time with your friends and family, so you better jump on the opportunity and save $20 on your purchase.

Securing a good bargain doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to wait that long, it just means keeping an eye on the things you most desire and spotting any price changes.

You might also want to check out other early Black Friday sales and you might just be lucky enough to walk away with some Razer gaming gear, a new laptop, or maybe even a new VPN.

Xbox controllers are also going for less money prior to the major discount event, so be sure to check that out as well.

So if one of the above-mentioned games was on your wishlist, these early Black Friday & Cyber Monday deals really were answers to all those prayers.

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The Best Game Capture Software

When Q-bert and Ms. Pac-Man roamed the earth, it wasn’t unusual to see a group of kids huddled around an arcade machine watching the neighborhood’s best go all the way on a single quarter. In the 90s, the game in my neighborhood was Street Fighter II, and the aughts had young gamers clustered around living room televisions with the Grand Thefts Auto.

Fast forward to today, where sharing or streaming video of your gameplay online is common, and almost any major game you can think of has a viewer base and star players. Unlike games of yesteryear, where Donkey Kong or Sonic the Hedgehog followed a pre-determined path and variation between game runs was relatively minor, video games today offer myriad different endings, outcomes, and middle games that can be as entertaining to watch as to play. There are even sports games like the FIFA series and Rocket League offering something closer to traditional sports highlights.

Whether it’s to show off to the world or just a few friends, PC game recording is a hot trend that many gamers want to be a part of. If you want to get in on the fun, how do you get started and which recording software should you use? There’s no shortage of free video recording tools out there vying for your attention, many with unique hooks or features.

This guide will point you to the best recording software for your needs. (If you’re looking to start live streaming specifically, be sure to also check out PCWorld’s guide to game streaming with Twitch. See also our roundup of the best USB microphones for streaming.)

Best overall game capture software

OBS Studio

Open Broadcast Software (OBS) Studio tops the list for best game capture software. This suite is ridiculously flexible, allowing you to capture not only your game but also add a shot of your webcam, a watermark, and even more complex elements. The performance impact of OBS is also surprisingly small considering how much it can do.

OBS resides in the domain of professional and power users, but the beauty is that with just a few minutes of training it’s easy enough to start using. Anyone who wants to take their game recording and production to the next level should really take a look at OBS. 

Best game capture software for beginners

Plays for desktop’s Profile section.

There’s no doubt that the easiest capture tool to use is Plays from chúng tôi You just install it, sign-in, and it starts doing its job with no prompting necessary. More experienced users can tweak the capture settings, but it’s not a requirement to get a quality experience right from the outset.

Best game capture tool for sharing

Game Bar captures in the Xbox App.

Plays is just as easy to use as the Game Bar for editing. After you’ve recorded your gameplay, Plays appears with equally simple editing tools to cut down your clip or upload the whole thing to 

The downside of both is that they don’t tie into platforms like YouTube and Twitch. In both cases, however, it’s easy to get access to your videos locally to upload them elsewhere.

How we tested game capture software

We reviewed each capture tool by running a game benchmarking tool without capture software enabled to get a baseline, and then running it again with the capture software actively recording. The difference, measured in frames per second (fps), gives us an idea of the performance impact you can expect from these tools.

We also consider how easy or difficult it is to install and configure the software, what it’s like to activate it in the moment, and how easy the software’s interface is to use and understand. 

We don’t use a top-of-the-line rig for our tests, but a laptop with an external GPU setup. The point wasn’t to see what a tremendously powerful system can do, because tremendously powerful systems won’t have much of a problem running anything. Using this setup shows how budget systems fare while gaming and recording at the same time.

Take our benchmarking numbers with a slight grain of salt, though. The performance hit created by video capture software can vary wildly among different PC configurations. Your CPU, graphics card, other hardware, and software running in the background can greatly affect results. These benchmarks are meant to give a general idea of recording software performance.

Besides, the unique features of one gaming capture program may lead you to pick it over another regardless of potential performance concerns.

Our test rig was a Lenovo X220 laptop with 8GB of RAM, a 2.7GHz dual-core Intel Sandy Bridge Core i7 2620-M processor with HyperThreading, and an Asus GeForce GTX 750Ti overclock edition with 2GB of dedicated onboard memory.

7 Of The Best Game Engines For New Game Developers

Game developers require a platform that provides an expression of creativity and performance without additional plugins or extra purchases. While there are hundreds of cool game engines on the market, few are as popular with new developers as those rendering cross-platform support, using artificial intelligence (AI), and creating immersive augmented and virtual reality experiences.

The following list of indie game engines use the most powerful technologies, have the most vibrant online communities for support, and provide the most essential tools and workflows to take your final output to the next level.

1. CryEngine V

Crytek’s CryEngine V is where this developer remastered one of the gaming community’s most beloved FPS titles: Crysis. Since Crysis titles are known for having impressive graphics, especially when first released, CryEngine boasts numerous features for creating appealing visuals such as Area Lights, DirectX 12 support, Physically Based Rendering, and 3D HDR Lens Flares. CryEngine’s next-level visual tools are evident in titles developed even in the software’s previous versions, such as CryEngine I, in which the Far Cry series was developed.

The latest version of CryEngine supports Windows, Linux, PlayStation4, Xbox One, Oculus Rift, open-source Virtual Reality, PlayStation VR, and HTC Vive. According to Crytek, support for mobile software development is underway.

CryEngine is 100 percent free to use but implements a royalty system. It works this way: the first $5,000 of annual revenue per project is royalty-free, then 5 percent of annual revenue exceeding the threshold is paid to Crytek.

2. Unreal Engine 4

Whether your game is meant to be played in Windows, Linux, macOS, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS, or even the latest Oculus, Hololens 2, Samsung Gear, or Google VR, Unreal Engine by Epic Games provides an unmatched experience. Unreal Engine is by far one of the most popular gaming software and has been around since 1998 powering hundreds of popular games, including the Batman Arkham series, Dragon Ball Z, Fortnite Battle Royale, and Call of Cthulhu.

Having been in the business for so long, Epic has learned a lot from its mistakes. Doing so has allowed it to create the closest thing you have to an error-free, bug-free experience.

Unreal Engine also uses open platforms and a brilliant support system based on tickets as well as a vibrant community to help you in any sticky situation. It is also cross-compatible with other gaming engines such as Unity or Amazon Lumberyard.

The gaming engine is free to use. Once you publish a game, you pay them 5 percent royalties after the first $3,000 per game in a calendar quarter. This is good for someone who just started as a game developer. You don’t have to worry too much about costs, and there is only one catch: access to Unreal’s marketplace is not free.

Unreal Engine 5 Early Access

In 2023, Epic Games revealed Unreal Engine 5 (UE5). UE5 Early Access currently supports the same platforms as Unreal Engine 4 (UE4), such as next- and current-generation consoles, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android. However, new UE5 features, such as Nanite and Lumen, are only supported on next-generation consoles and Windows as of this writing.

Nanite and Lumen are two key features that make UE5 distinctive and better for creating immersive in-game worlds. Nanite allows you to import cinema-quality source art with millions of polygons and utilize them multiple times without sacrificing frame rate. Lumen, on the other hand, lets you create realistic scenes where indirect lighting adapts to changes in direct lighting. For example, Lumen’s solution is manifested in scenes when an in-game world’s shadows change angles throughout the day.

Aside from Nanite and Lumen, UE5 also features a new World Partition system, One File Per Actor system, Data Layers, Control Rig, Pose Browser, and MetaSounds, among others.

According to Epic Games, they’re aiming to ship UE5 to the public in early 2023. But if you can’t wait, try UE5 Early Access by visiting its official page and downloading the software.

3. Unity

Supporting more than 25 platforms, Unity is a highly-ranked gaming engine that prides itself on being “the world’s best real-time development platform.” It provides the behind-the-scenes action for some of the most engrossing and imaginative role-playing games, including Escape from Tarkov, Osiris: New Dawn, In the Valley of Gods, Harold Halibut, and Sonder.

While individual users can use Unity for free, the annual Teams subscription plans start at $399 per person. All the games you end up developing are royalty-free.

4. Amazon Lumberyard

Amazon Lumberyard, a fairly new game engine (launched c.2023), is a continuation of CryEngine, which used to power intensive games, including Far Cry, Sniper: Ghost Warrior, and Enemy Front. Amazon has improvised the features to support integration with AWS and hundreds of game-ready assets that can import files from Adobe Photoshop to Autodesk Maya. It also uses its proprietary animation editor to create compelling characters as well as a feature-rich sound engine.

You only have to create an AWS account, and the entire game development is free except for one catch: you need an AWS subscription (pricing varies). Other than that, Lumberyard is free to use, and you “don’t” have to share royalties with Amazon. In terms of features, compatibility, and support, Lumberyard is second to none.

5. GameMaker Studio 2

GameMaker Studio 2 is a 2D game development software from YoYo Games. It’s famed for being the home of games such as Undertale, Shovel Knight, Hyperlight Drifter, Katana Zero, and many other titles. It supports software development for Windows, macOS, Ubuntu, PlayStation4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Raspberry Pi, and HTML5.

GameMaker Studio 2 houses Geography Markup Language and its Drag and Drop visual coding tool to help 2D game developers.

Its key features include its Room Editor, which allows you to add and remove rooms and integrate them into camera controls and design tools. Its Workspaces feature lets you customize and organize your project through spaces where you create and view assets, write code, and design rooms. Lastly, its Object Editor allows you to create and define the behavior of objects inside each room. Using this tool, you can make an element visible, solid, or persistent.

You can use GameMaker Studio 2 for free or upgrade to a Creator, Indie, or Enterprise subscription starting at $4.99 per month.

6. AppGameKit

Are you an indie game developer with a small budget? AppGameKit is a no-frills development solution that supports the best games you can build on Visual Editor. For an all-inclusive deal at $80, you get one of the easiest tools in the market for developing games on iOS, Android, Windows PC, Xbox, Linux, Raspberry Pi, HTML5 browsers, and more.

7. Godot Engine

Godot Engine is a free and open-source 2D and 3D game engine. It provides developers with an extensive range of basic development tools without the fluff of feature-heavy software. It also lets you create custom tools and use its visual editor for improved engine navigation.

However, the best part of Godot Engine is that everything you create using the engine is royalty-free, and you have full ownership of everything that’s in your project.

So if you’re looking to start your game development project and want to make sure you get 100% of everything you worked for, Godot Engine is a great software pick.

Godot Engine also encourages people with the necessary knowledge to help them fix and create features in the software. If you happen to enjoy what Godot Engine has to offer, you can contribute through coding and documentation. You can also contribute by reporting issues within the engine.

Frequently Asked Questions 1. What kind of PC do you need for game development?

However, if you have a 3D game development project planned, having more powerful hardware can help speed up rendering times, improve testing, and support a heavy workload during development.

If you have a specific game engine you want to try, navigate to their official website to find out their system requirements.

2. Do these game engines offer learning resources for beginners?

Most, if not all, game engines on this list offer free learning resources for different levels of game development expertise. You can find resources by visiting the official website of the engine of your choice.

There are also third-party free and paid courses that can teach you how to use specific game engines, with most of them on platforms like Udemy.

3. What are the best free and third-party resources for coding?

There are thousands of content creators that offer content on learning or improving your coding skills. Since this is a necessary skill to develop a game or any other software, learning is essential. Check out this list of the best YouTube channels that offer coding resources.

Natalie dela Vega

Natalie is a writer specializing in tech how-tos and gaming. When she’s not writing, she plays PC games and travels. Here at MakeTechEasier, you will see her write about guides, tips, and solutions for Windows and iOS.

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Android Wear: Too Little Too Late

Android Wear: too little too late

Google is getting in on the Wearables market too late, with far too little to show for their prolonged absence. Over the past year there’s been a wearable devices fad that’s never really taken off – only a select few devices have lasted more than a few months on the market. Now comes Google, ready to take on this environment with Android Wear before Apple arrives with their fabled iWatch.

But should Apple approach? Does Apple really need to make an iWatch when there’s been no especially significant success in any smartwatch thus far?

What’s the point in creating a device that has no calling? Perhaps its to put Siri or Google’s voice command system and Google Now on the wrist, a place it’s never (officially) gone before?

Today we ran an impromptu poll in a couple of social networks with our partners at Android Community on voice command systems. The question for these (still active) polls is as follows:

Do you actively use voice controls on your smartphone?

Android Community Facebook

Yes 46

No 74

Android Community Google+

Yes 18

No 3

As these miniature polls are being run on Android Community’s social networks, it’s safe to say the responders are active Android users. Google+ unsurprisingly skews toward the especially Android user, while Facebook seems to drive toward those that do not make use of voice controls regularly.

Several users appear citing specific reasons why voice controls are not viable for their average daily routine. A loud (or especially quiet) workplace, kids at home, public transportation – the average user appears to have more space where they’re unable to use voice commands than they do with sensible access.

Voice commands are central to the Android Wear ecosystem. In our article from earlier this week, Android Wear video asks why Wearables exist, you’ll find Google reiterating the necessity for voice interaction with Android Wear devices.

If Google – or Apple, for that matter – want to bring a successful model for Wearables to the market, they need something we can’t see yet.

When the iPhone was introduced, Apple took – in retrospect – a very obvious step forward. They put together mobile internet, a phone, and an iPod for music. The paradigm shift created by successfully delivering internet on the combination of two devices that were already successful – that’s the kind of change a company would need to create a future for Wearable devices.

If Google can present an array of features we’ve not yet been privy to for Android Wear at Google I/O 2014, they’ll have a chance of keeping the Android Wear ecosystem alive. These features are going to need to summon already-popular activities we do daily in order to keep the public’s attention.

Where there’s no necessity, a company must create lust for the unnecessary. Google has to do more than provide an extension of the Android software system for a wrist-based device. They need to make the public want something for which they have absolutely no need.

Cod Vanguard Weapon List: Leaks, Beta Weapons, Confirmed

CoD Vanguard Weapon List: Leaks, Beta Weapons, Confirmed

We have created a Call of Duty Vanguard Weapon list for all rumoured and confirmed weapons.

Call of Duty Vanguard is building momentum ahead of its November 5 launch. Many players have had the opportunity to play the Alpha, Closed Beta, and now Open Beta, with the beta currently extended. One of the things those who have played the betas have managed to do is get their hands on the CoD Vanguard weapons, along with trying a few maps (and stare at overly bright suns) and report bugs. Due to this, we can now compile all a CoD Vanguard weapons list.

As for what you can expect in the CoD Vanguard weapons list, you will see the weapons in the beta. along with some leaks showcased ahead of the weekend. The leaks go into detail on many more maps, weapons and other content to come for the game’s full launch.

We have included a confirmed section on the weapon list to differentiate between leaked weapons and weapons in the betas. Be aware that the leaked weapons have descriptions too that are in the same style as the weapons in the game. Take them with a pinch of salt, and we will update the article when we know more at launch. If you’re interested, you can find the leak megathread here.

CoD Vanguard Weapon List

Call of Duty Vanguard Assault Rifles

Call of Duty Vanguard SMGs

CoD Vanguard weapons list: LMGs

CoD Vanguard weapon list (LMGs)DescriptionConfirmed?BrenThis gun has extreme damage and accuracy for long-range kills with short bursts, but very high recoil and low mobility.YesDP27High damage and accuracy allow long-range kills when fired in bursts, with decent control for full-auto use at short to medium range.YesMG42This machine gun is excellent for continuous firing to suppress or punish enemy movement, but struggles at long range.YesType 11This light machine gun is easy to carry and reposition but isn’t as powerful or stable.No

CoD Vanguard weapons: Shotguns

CoD Vanguard weapons: Snipers

CoD Vanguard Weapon List (Snipers)DescriptionConfirmed?Arisaka 99This rifle is good for light and mobile sniping, but extra precision is required for 1-hit killsNoKar98kA balanced bolt action sniper rifle, this gun can kill with a single shot at long range and has generally low mobility.YesLee EnfieldNo description yet.No3-Line RifleThe heaviest weapon delivers 1-hit kills almost anywhere on the body at perfect accuracy but is particularly slow to move or use.Yes

Cod Vanguard weapons: Marksman rifles

CoD Vanguard Weapon List (Marksman Rifles)DescriptionConfirmed?G-43 (Gewehr)With fast firing and high control, it can dominate at midrange but lacks the accuracy and damage output for great distances.NoM1 GarandThis adaptable, accurate, and powerful rifle can put enemies down with two well-placed shots at mid or long-range.YesSVT-40This powerful semi-automatic battle rifle can land one hit kills to the upper torso and head but has low mobility and fire rate.No

CoD Vanguard Secondary Weapons List

Call of Duty Vanguard pistols list

CoD Vanguard Weapon List (Pistols)DescriptionConfirmed?LugerA powerful long-range pistol, the Luger has a strong kick and a lower fire rate.NoMachine PistolFull-auto fire makes for easy kills but the weapon is hampered by high recoil and a small magazineYes1911This basic sidearm is quick to draw and can help finish a fight when the primary firearm is empty or unfit for a situation.YesRattThis pistol is fast and easy to use and can fire as fast as you pull the trigger.YesWebleyThis revolver is strong and fires quickly but has very high recoil and low ammo, and is slow to reload.No

CoD Vanguard melee weapons

CoD Vanguard Weapon List (Melee)DescriptionConfirmed?FS Fighting KnifeA CQC tactical knife. The standard military issue, employed for fast, quick and deadly wetwork.YesRiot ShieldA portable bulletproof and explosive-resistant shield that you can also use to deal melee damage.No

CoD Vanguard weapons: Launchers

CoD Vanguard Weapon List (Launchers)DescriptionConfirmed?M1 BazookaThis shoulder-fired launcher fires 60mm explosive rockets, great for vehicles, but slow to reload. Make sure not to stand behind one when it’s fired.YesMK1 LauncherNo description yetNoPanzerschreckThis shoulder-fired launcher fires 88mm explosive rockets, great for large areas and vehicles but slow to reload and set up. Make sure not to stand behind one when it’s fired.YesPanzerfaustThis disposable launcher fires a shaped charge warhead capable of easily penetrating vehicle armor. Make sure not to stand behind one when it’s fired.No

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