The Lighthouse Customer: World Of Diving

By Christopher Livingston on September 1st, 2014.

One word. One syllable. Sounds like: DARRRRRRRRK!

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, sharks, shoals, and silence with World of Diving.

When you start playing World of Diving you’re invited to vote on the next feature you’d like the developers to add. Most players have voted for a metal detector for treasure hunting. The second most-popular choice is an advanced camera. Least popular: an in-game chat feature. Frankly, I’d be happy if chat never gets added. While it can be great to talk to other players, I think there’s something to be said for a game that allows just a few friendly gestures and plenty of blessed silence.

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Hexcells Infinite: Wot I Think

By John Walker on September 1st, 2014.

I wasn’t subtle about how much I enjoyed Hexcells last year. The original Hexcells appeared from nowhere in my inbox in September, and I fell instantly in love. The second game, Hexcells Plus, arrived in December, after we’d already decided the original deserved a spot in our top games of 2013. I’ve replayed both games multiple times, because it’s a puzzle game of exquisite pleasure, delivered with calm poise and utter beauty. I was primed to think I might quite like Hexcells Infinite. Here’s wot I think:

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The RPS Bargain Bucket: Death by Fluff

By Cassandra Khaw on August 30th, 2014.

It’s my birthday tomorrow, and I can write about the most incredibly fluffy present I’ve ever received in my life if I want to, damn it. A close friend and ex-colleague mailed me this a few weeks ago and allowed me to open it pre-emptively, to make up for a dreadful week. This is what I found. If it was any fluffier, I’d weaponize that lamb and turn it against curmudgeons everywhere. It would rule households. Worlds. But, well, it didn’t quite hit the bar. Poor Fritz. As always, however, here is a bucket of discounts to tide you over till the next week. Have a good one!

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S.EXE: F**k Everything (RNSFW)

By Cara Ellison on August 29th, 2014.

Fuck Everything

Well, it’s been a hellish two weeks, RPS. This week’s S.EXE comes to you from the heart of one of Europe’s most beautiful and sexually liberal cities, Amsterdam, where I am sat with a glass of Pinot Blanc, bread and some sort of Gouda, watching the internet try to hack away at the self-esteem, security, and self-belief of women who make and talk about games. I know it got to me: I sent a message to a colleague to ask his professional opinion. If I, a woman, wrote about a feminist game maker in this climate, would it be an irresponsible act?

I decided, with the gamemaker’s permission of course, to fuck all that worry to one side. It is not Regency England. Women do not need to ask a man’s permission to do fuck all, least of all worry what some anonymous ones on the internet think about anything. That’s what art is about: expressing what you want to. Let’s go on a journey into some real weird shit, RPS. Women are here. We are going to stay if we want to. We are going to talk about what we like. Today what I want to talk about is fucking chairs, fucking women, fucking men, and fucking monsters. If you don’t want to come that’s okay, but this here peculiar territory at 9pm is mine and no one else’s. This will not be safe for work. Let’s Fuck Everything.

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Wot I Think: Cloud Chamber

By Adam Smith on August 29th, 2014.

Cloud Chamber is a multiplayer narrative adventure, in which players discuss, theorise and contemplate. It’s a cooperative game in which everyone is anonymous and the only goal is to understand. Original live action footage is spliced together with documentary videos from the European Space Agency to create a sci-fi story that is, at least in part, a changeable thing, created by the commentary and input of human observers.

It’s FMV focus makes it seem like a portion of the past but it’s approach to multiplayer gaming feels like a slice of the future. Here’s wot I think.

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A Log Book: The Forest Diary Part Two – Sharkrolling

By John Walker on August 29th, 2014.

Oh stop being so melodramatic.

My diaried adventures within The Forest began with my foolhardy attempt to build a log cabin. It was hubris. So following a remarkably similar plane crash into a remarkably similar – but slightly different – woodland, I’ve attempted a more modest life of brutal fights, daring cave escapes, and most of all, sharkrolling.

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The Flare Path: Fruit Of The Thorn

By Tim Stone on August 29th, 2014.

It’s blackberry time here in Upper Bumhope. Brimming punnets of fragrant fruit clutter kitchens and courtyards. Almost everyone you meet has indigo fingertips and scarred forearms. Finding villagers willing to gather simulation and wargame news at this time of the year isn’t easy but thanks to Gleaner, Gusto, and Ghast (FP’s trio of duraluminum-and-balsa reconithopters) I do, just about, have a column for you today. On the other side of yonder html hedge, slim paragraphs on To End All Wars, First World War Campaigns: East Prussia ’14, DCS World, Unity of Command, and Combat Helo. Read the rest of this entry »

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Week in Tech: AMD’s New 285 GPU, NVMe SSDs And Stuff

By Jeremy Laird on August 28th, 2014.

Oh, you silly GPUs. Remember the days when by your names should we know ye? No longer. Increasingly, both AMD and Nvidia appear to be engaged in a game of one-upmanship when it comes to baffling branding. Enter, therefore, the new AMD Radeon R9 285. The nomenclature suggests it should sit above the existing R9 280, but in fact it’s cheaper, less complex and most likely a bit slower. Why not Radeon R9 275? I have no idea. Still, it looks like a promising new option in terms of bang for your buck. Meanwhile, the complete package for next-gen SSD performance is finally coming together as a major new controller chipset with support for NVMe is announced. Yes, NVMe! Oh and on a related note, it now looks like you might want to skip Intel’s upcoming Broadwell architecture / CPU family / platform / whatever and jump straight to Skylake. Details after the break.

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The Risen 3 Report, Day 6: The Price Of A Monkey

By Alec Meer on August 28th, 2014.

What price a life? Specifically, what price a simian life? Specifically, what price a helper monkey trained in thievery?
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Wot I Checked: Chess 2 – The Sequel

By Jim Rossignol on August 28th, 2014.

Ah, Chess 2. A joke made real? Seems like it, only they’re not joking. This is a straight up remix and rebalance intended to shuffle the game away from its standard opening/closing moves and to fix the “problems” of the venerable chequered board format. But how can that work? And more importantly: does it work?

Read on for my handful of chess anecdotes and some writing about Chess 2, too. Toooo.
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Dote Night: Does Lore Matter To Online Wizard Fights?

By Philippa Warr on August 27th, 2014.

Part of a miscellany of serious thoughts, animal gifs, and anecdotage from the realm of MOBAs/hero brawlers/lane-pushers/ARTS/tactical wizard-em-ups. One day Pip might even tell you the story of how she bumped into Na’Vi’s Dendi at a dessert buffet cart.

A few days back I was reading through Skeleton King’s lore and picking over his evolution through the years. It pulled me into a wider train of thought about Dota lore and how the game itself doesn’t go in for a particular obvious narrative conceit. You are a team of wizards – some of whom know each other – and you want to kick over the other team’s base. What the base does, what the team does after winning or losing, why the characters are on Radiant or Dire side – none of that gets addressed over the course of a match. But why is that the case, and would Dota 2 benefit from a little more lore?

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Wot I Think: The Journey Down Chapter 2

By John Walker on August 27th, 2014.

Adventure charmer The Journey Down Chapter 2 has come hurtling in only, um, two years after Skygoblin’s first part. However, with a lengthy, well-constructed and rather pleasant game as a result, it seems it was rather worth the wait. Here’s wot I think:

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The Risen 3 Report, Day 5: The World’s Longest Arm Wrestle

By Alec Meer on August 27th, 2014.

The story so far. Now: arm-wrestling.

Four minutes. Four long, boring, exhausting minutes. Am I trolling this guy, or do I just not know how to arm wrestle?
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