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Gaming: Play old-school Minecraft (for free!); Ghost Recon: Breakpoint revealed; more

By Benjamin Bullard
Minecraft character poster

Today’s Minecraft may have a lot more bells and whistles than ever, but if you ever feel that sudden urge to rewind to a simpler time to revisit the original’s look and feel, the old-school version is now never more than a browser bookmark away. 

Just in time to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the blocky building game’s debut, Minecraft has released a super-accessible version of Minecraft Classic that requires nothing more than an internet connection. Totally free to play and requiring no downloads or login, you can can simply drop in on the game’s landing page anytime and tinker for a spell inside the creative mode version (there’s no way to save your game, so this is truly a pick-up-and-play experience).

In more up-to-the-minute Minecraft news, Microsoft has been teasing a new augmented reality Minecraft experience of some kind for mobile devices. While there are no details yet on what’s coming, Microsoft hints in a short preview trailer (seen above) that players will be able to merge in-game creation with their real-world environment while on the go. 

More information about the new mobile app (or whatever it may be) is coming on May 17. But the nostalgic trip down Minecraft Classic’s browser-based memory lane is available to play right now

Only days after revealing some pretty cool DLC content featuring Jon Bernthal for Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands, Ubisoft has announced Ghost Recon: Breakpoint — a full-scale sequel to its 2017 tactical shooter. 

Set in a remote South Pacific archipelago known as Auroa, Breakpoint brings Tom Clancy-style espionage to “a vast land of diverse biomes that range from lush rainforests to snowy peaks,” according to Ubisoft. A home base for the enigmatic Skell Technology, the shady Silicon Valley company is using Auroa as “a high-tech, high-security utopia of sustainable eco-cities and robotics research” that your Ghost will get to infiltrate. 

Breakpoint promises a new “diverse, hostile, and mysterious open world” geared for both single-player and co-op gaming. “Injured, without support, and hunted down by ex-Ghosts, you must fight to survive while lost in Auroa,” the preview teases.

Pre-orders for the game already are live, and best of all, it’s heading this way soon: Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Breakpoint arrives on Oct. 4 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC, with info on a pre-release beta coming soon.

Finally, the long-hyped sequel to 2010’s gonzo, mutant-swarming Rage shooter is almost upon us, and Bethesda’s new Rage 2 launch trailer puts to rest any fears you might have had that the budding series’ fun, shoot-‘em-up vibe might veer too far into serious territory. 

Connecting with the first game via a backwards, reverse-chronology tour through Rage 2 to the beginning (“and beyond,” as Bethesda teases), the mildly NSFW clip warps at light speed through all the silly, Borderlands-style beats that made the first game such a surprise hit. 

For series newcomers, the post-apocalyptic Rage universe is, in a nutshell, a “dystopian world devoid of society, law, and order” that lets — nay, beckons — you “go anywhere, shoot anything, and explode everything,” as Bethesda puts it

Set to release on May 14, Rage 2 is available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.