Fight on Multiple Fronts in Holdfast: Nations At War!

A team of Maltese game developers have just announced an online Multiplayer shooter with a new and challenging setting. The game takes place during the Napoleonic era bringing forth cannon, muskets and sailing ships! 
 
Take a look at the announcement trailer for ‘Holdfast: Nations At War’:  
 
 
“Holdfast: Nations At War is an online multiplayer first and third person shooter focusing on a combination of teamwork and individual skill. Take part in historic clashes on land and at sea waged by the most powerful nations during the great Napoleonic Era.” 
 
They’ve also launched a Greenlight campaign along with their announcement to prepare for its eventual release on the Steam Store.  
 
 
You’ll be hearing more from us on this but until then you can check out their website for more information at www.holdfastgame.com

Posted by Andre Mizzi on 20th January 2017, 16:40

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Interview with Bernard Vella - The Young Maltese SIMRacing Prodigy

For those that don't know, SIMRacing is a sector of esports which deals with simulated racing, giving racers the opportunity to get on the track without opening a single door - this is made possible thanks to the recent leap in technology within racing simulation. One other thing which you may not know is that Maltese talent is viciously present in many competitors. An example is the young Bernard Vella, a 16-year-old who has just won an international Sim Racing competition by taking down a renowned competitor. We decided to learn more about the youngster and SIMRacing in general through an article interview, which you can all enjoy below! 1.) Let’s kick off the interview by focusing on you – please introduce yourself in terms of personal life, work, esports and anything else you’d like to mention!  My name is Bernard Vella; a 16-year-old sim racing driver at GT Omega RPM Esports. I am currently a student and I’m preparing for my first year in sixth form at St Aloysius College. My passion is to become a race car engineer and to work on what I love. 2.) This interview is being carried out on the back of an incredible achievement by Bernard Vella at an international simulation racing event – the ADAC SimRacing Expo. Could you break it down for us?  The ADAC Sim Racing Expo is the biggest simulator expo there is, which is held annually in Germany, and together with my team we competed in various competitions against the best drivers in the world. My teammates Keith Camilleri, Brandon Tabone and Terence Grech competed in the GT 500, while me and Omar Barbara competed in other competitions at the event. I focused on the Wave Italy Championship because I love to drive F1 cars and there was also a great prizes for the top 3 drivers. 3.) To win it all, you took down a reigning champion in Brendon Leigh by a mere 0.016 seconds! Describe your journey as a racing competitor up to this point in both the virtual and real sense.  I started sim racing last November and from the start I loved the competition it brings and I would balance training on my simulator and my school work. I competed in my first race on the 14th of December in the Sim Racing Malta GT3 Casual Race, where me and Keith Camilleri battled it out, which led to me being fastest in practice and qualifying and also winning both of the races. The main reason that I got used to sim racing quickly was due to me racing in real life with a go kart which helped me adapt to sim racing. I never expected to win against Brendon Leigh the current F1 Esports Champion that I watched win his championship when I had just bought my steering wheel last November, but it goes to show that with dedication and hard work, anything is possible. 4.) SIM Racing is a sector of esports which many people are not familiar with. Of course, one can easily bridge the fact that it is digital racing – but in your opinion, what makes SIM Racing as a competitive genre different to other genres such as MOBAs, FPS and Fighting in terms of gameplay and strategy?  Unlike other sectors of esports, skills learned in sim racing translate to real life racing which I experienced in my first few months of sim racing where I saw improvements in my real life racing almost immediately. One of the main reasons sim racing is becoming recognized by many professional racing teams is due to the fact that it can become the grass roots of motorsport which currently is karting, that is very expensive and not many people can get the opportunity to show what they’re capable of. 5.) With this in mind, how does one practice and become better at SIM Racing? How much does actual karting help out?  Real life racing and sim racing go hand in hand and just like in real life; to improve in sim racing, the main goal is to focus while training. Training sessions don’t have to be extremely long like most people think, for example I train usually for 2-4 hours a day depending on my school work with training being split throughout the day as to not exhaust myself. Actual karting helped me from the start because I already had the feeling of how a car will respond to my inputs in the simulator. 6.) What are your views on both the local and international scenes when it comes to SIM Racing? How could both be improved?  Sim racing in Malta has taken a massive step forward with events being organized by Sim Racing Malta and World Pro Racing locally, which gives opportunities to sim racing drivers to show their worth in a simulator locally. Internationally, sim racing is constantly growing, shown even in Formula 1 where actual F1 teams are picking simulator drivers to compete in events and even help on the actual F1 simulator which teams use to set up the actual car during a racing weekend. There aren’t major improvements that have to be made, but if sim racing continues to grow and small problems are polished out it can definitely become better in the coming years. 7.) You also form part of a team – GT OMEGA RPM Esports. Describe the process of being picked up by the team. How does the team support you in your competition?  When I competed in my first two races I competed against drivers of GT Omega RPM Esports where I showed I am capable of matching and even beating them, therefore Justin the manager of the team selected me, Brandon Tabone and Omar Barbara to join the team last January. The teams gives us constant support in our competitions, they help us find sponsorships, find engineers that can help us work on the setup of the car to make it faster and give us exposure to help further improve our image as drivers. 8.) Let’s take a look to the future; what are your goals as an individual competitor and what are your goals as part of a team? Do you have any separate goals for real and simulated racing?  My main goal is to push myself to the limit so I can extract everything I can from myself and earn respect from other drivers and teams, along with my team who have the same ambitions of winning. In both real life and virtual racing I try to improve as much I can, so if I ever get an opportunity to prove myself I know that I would have given everything that I have.  9.) Advice time; we like to conclude our interviews by asking for advice on behalf of our viewers. What advice do you have to offer to any Maltese trying to make it as a professional racer in any dimension? What does it take to arrive at your level of competition?  It’s important to train seriously, this means that it is important to balance all things and to put hard work and dedication in to all of your ambitions in life which in my case were racing and school. It’s also very important to look at how other people drive and think while racing to learn from them. To compete at a high level it is important to remain level headed and even if you reach a certain level, to look at the small things that prevent us from reaching our limit. Some phenomenal answers out of Bernard- prior to this interview, I was completely unaware of any local SIMRacing scene and as an esports journalist, I appreciate the enlightenment. I was also fascinated by how young the competitor is; just one year younger and attending the same sixth form, he's off winning international races and I'm here writing about it. Overall, Gamers.com.mt wishes him the best for his future in both virtual and physical racing, of course, also wishing his team a similar amount of luck. 

Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018 - Interview with NoNames

NoNames is an odd name for the following five guys:  nieSow, Marre, xinjini, kN and bRUDiii as they're some great names with some great history, as the team formed from the remains of Online Owls and Team Legit, a couple original Battalion 1944 names. One of the earliest qualifiers for the event, the squad didn't even have time to think of a proper team name. Their early entry is due to their impressive record online, which some in the community are finding too impressive with empty accusations of cheating. Let's hear what Robin xinjini Korte, of 24 years, responded to our interview questions.  1.) How are you preparing yourselves for the upcoming event, the first ever Battalion 1944 Major? To be honest, we were not able to prepare at all. Since everyone still thinks that we have a cheater team, no one wants to play against us. I believe that there is a reason for this.  Roughly half of the Battalion 1944 community are ex-professional players from CoD 2 and 4, and of course,  they think they’re still the top players off the world. This might be true in some ways, but they literally cannot accept the fact that Battalion 1944 is a new game and it's only natural that there are new players with huge potentials. We look forward to disproving all of these claims on LAN and I'm looking forward to seeing all the faes, when we keep playing on LAN like we did online.  2.) For how long has your team been waiting for an opportunity to play Battalion 1944 at this level? Actually, I think we had this level from the beginning because we all played Cod 2 and Cod 4 competitive and that made it easier to reach a high level in Battalion 1944. The main problem was to gather a bunch of people who fit together and have fun playing with each other. 3.) What are your goals heading into the event? What placing are you aiming at? It's obvious, isnt it? To win and prove that we’re a name to remember on LAN and online. 4.) What was your experience in the online qualifiers? Where there any negatives and positives you’d like to point out? It's hard to say; we just won every match and from our perspective, everything worked fine. Our team play was good, and overall the motivation within the team was great - well organized, and we cannot wait for the main event.  5.) From the online qualifiers, what is your team’s judgement on the level of competition at this time in the title’s lifespan? How much room for improvement is there? I think there is a lot of potential in this game. Same goes for all teams and players, and I'm sure we will see way more good players and new teams, which will improve the overall level of competition in the future of Battalion 1944. 6.) If not yourselves, what teams form the top competition for the first place spot? To be honest. it's nothing that we think about. For now, it's hard to say, because many teams are on nearly the same level at the moment, so it could be every team, I guess. It's all down to preparation now, and showing up on the day.  7.) Do you plan to keep competing in Battalion 1944 after the Major is finalized? Of course -it doesn't make any sense to stop after the major. We will be competing for all upcoming events and I'm pretty sure, we will all meet again in the near future.  8.) How do you view the updates which have recently hit the title? Have they all been general improvements? Yes and no, the ideas behind their actions are clear, but I think there are some small points, that bulkhead should work over again. However, in general, the game is heading in the right direction. 9.) What would you change, if you could, in Battalion 1944 mechanics, maps and weapons? Well, I guess it's easier to say what somebody would change than what somebody actually can change. I would probably work on everything and do some fixes here and there and I would concentrate on the main points which people give feedback about. 10.) Any advice for those Battalion 1944 rosters which are struggling to reach the level of competition needed for the event? it's pretty simple -, train harder, work harder on your team play, analyze what went wrong and then get better after fixing all the issues. All of that should be obvious. It must be rather annoying to be accused of cheating in an online qualifier. However, I'm certain that the team's players couldn't care less - being so talented that you are apparently 'cheating' must feel pretty sweet. They'll be fighting with a fire to prove themselves at the Blitzkrieg Masters - I'd watch out for NoNames if I were you, they may have no name, but they've got an aim. 

Online Gaming Addiction Statistically Leading to Divorces - Thoughts

Looking around the web for some inspirational news to cover for all of you, I encountered a shocking piece of information which marries Fortnite and divorce through statistics - how one leads to another. How could such a statement ever be concocted? Well, according to the UK's largest filers for divorce petitions, nearly 5 percent of all divorces this year have blamed an addiction to online games, with special mention of Fortnite, as a culprit of separation. What?  Such research and information are what is continually fueling the system of thoughts which labels gaming as a  possible 'mental disease', which Gamers.com.mt can't stand, and we're sure you've all heard of this development. The UK company involved is that of divorce-online.com, having collected 4,665 petitions from this year; meaning that roughly 200 were gaming-based. According to the company, they aren't surprised at all by this statement, as they boldly stood by recent medical development by saying:  “No surprise that more and more people are having relationship problems because of our digital addictions.”  Let's talk about it. Before we discuss and protect the name of gaming, it will be said that it's likely that a few of the cases were indeed due to an incurable addiction, in which one of the partners could not do anything else but game all day. That is one extreme of the situation and one which is indeed an addiction that may lead to the termination of a marriage. On the other hand, here's our reasoning in defending gaming. The internet and online gaming have both become so influential that they are beginning to have an effect on all aspects of life, reaching out and having a presence in our lives due to the fact that we enjoy interacting with the two. Hence, negative things in life such as death, marriage, addictions and others may slowly become correlated with it as online gaming grows as an industry.  However, the most important aspect of this statistic, which few take notice of, is the fact that the degree of an addiction depends on the person partaking in the 'gaming addiction.' Unlike other surveys, which usually involve a much younger audience and discusses how gaming is affecting the youth and whatever, this information pertains to once-married couples; ADULTS. It's easy to make it sound like online gaming is a vacuum which sucks people in unwantingly, although some games purposely make it easier than others, it is expected that anyone above 18 years of age, especially if they are married, should strike a balance in life.  Gaming addiction continues to be a hot topic, with politicians claiming violence and parents being rather concerned overall. If gaming is interfering with your relationship, you've got to get your priorities straight - I mean this in no offence, simply referring to the adults involved. Personally, I'm not one to place 'gaming addiction' besides something as serious as drug addiction, saying that it's just as potent, but that's just my opinion.  Let us know your thoughts below!

FIFA 19 Tournament at the Airport Food Court

Following last year's incredibly warm reception the MIA Games Weekend, this year we are back with a tournament for the newly released FIFA 19 with the main highlight being the great venue and the incredibly social atmosphere.  Recap of Last Year Last year, MIA Games week celebrated the titles of Tekken 7 and FIFA 18 with dedicated tournaments and prize pools thrown in with a lively background consisting of board games, a DJ and a wheel of fortune - all maintaining a 'retro' theme. It's safe to say, that you all loved this event very much, as it was quite the shakeup compared to our usual events while the venue served as the perfect opportunity to reach out to travelling foreigners and also many Maltese people. The serving of hot food and airport shopping vouchers was thrown in, too, following a small entry fee.  This Year Kicking off on Sunday 14th October, the event will focus its main attention on the new release of FIFA 19. The event will act as the first ever Maltese FIFA 19 tournament, just as last year's did for FIFA 18. The tournament will be handing out huge shopping vouchers to the top three finishes, with first place receiving €200, second €100 and third €50; all of which may be redeemed at Forestals Matrix, SkyParks Business Centre. After much thought, the entry fee will only cost €10, although two separate vouchers, one of €5 for Matrix, SkyParks Business Centre and another one of €5 for the food court should altogether balance the equation. Yes, you heard that right, all who pay the entry fee will receive €10 worth of shopping vouchers - making it practically cost nothing!  Tickets are available from the MIA Administration Offices on Level 2, which are open between 08.00 and 16.00 on weekdays and from the Gamers Lounge in Msida. More info regarding the tournament can be found here - https://www.gamers.com.mt/tournament/184/fifa-19-tournament-at-the-airport-food-court

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