Week in Tech: Nvidia’s Gaming Tablet, No More Moore

By Jeremy Laird on July 24th, 2014.

Nvidia has wheeled out its second effort at the obviously-not-actually-a-PC-but-does-interesting-things-with-PCs Shield gaming device. And this time it’s a tablet. Which is what it should have been in the first place. But doesn’t actually mean it’s automatically good idea. Still, it’s hard to imagine Shield the Second doing much worse than Shield the First, which ended up being given away in boxes of Cheerios (ish) and even then only escaped landfills on account of being handed out by the sackful to shameless media types addicted to freebies. Meanwhile, there’s more confirmation that Moore’s Law is really no, er, more, some interesting screens get priced up, another interesting screen turns out to be an epic dud…it was ever thus.
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Wot I Think: Gods Will Be Watching

By John Walker on July 24th, 2014.

Deconstructeam’s Ludum Dare entry Gods Will Be Watching is now a fully-realised game, released by oh-so-impish publishers Devolver Digital. Described as a “point and click thriller”, it’s, well, not that. It’s something else. Something… well, here’s wot I think:

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Freedom And Fantasy: Pillars Of Eternity Interview

By Adam Smith on July 24th, 2014.

Pillars of Eternity was, briefly, gaming’s most successful Kickstarter, at least in terms of funds raised. Like many crowdfunded games, particularly in the early days, it’s a project driven partly by nostalgia. A party-based fantasy RPG in the style of Baldur’s Gate and the other Infinity Engine D&D games, it has a strong heritage to live up to. Obsidian’s Josh Sawyer is the director of the game and I spoke to him late last week about theology, flagellant monks, freedom from licensing and respecting player’s choices. We also talked about his desire to make a historical RPG and his previous work, particularly the design of Fallout: New Vegas.

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Braben On Star Citizen, Elite 2 Bugs & Rude Planet Names

By Alec Meer on July 24th, 2014.

A short while ago I ran the first part of my recent interview with Elite co-creator David Braben about space, VR and other Dangerous-related topics; here’s part two, in which I mutter questions from RPS readers at him, on topics ranging from Wallace and Gromit to obscure Elite 2 bugs, before posing my own questions about his take on Star Citizen, and exactly who all these people throwing shedloads of money at space games are.
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Beyond Civilization: Discovering Firaxis

By Adam Smith on July 23rd, 2014.

While visiting Firaxis to play Civilization: Beyond Earth, I spent a couple of hours talking to members of the team and learning how the company works. As the current creators and curators of two of my favourite series of games, Firaxis rank among the most interesting studios in existence, and their history is also a large part of the history of PC strategy gaming. With one eye on the future and the other on the past, here are extended thougts on the utilitarian nature of Civilization, the role of Sid Meier and much much more.

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Tunnel Vision: The Chair’s The Star

By Alec Meer on July 23rd, 2014.

Apologies, this latest in my ongoing Oculus Rift / VR curiosities column is a week late, due to most of the RPS staff being dead last week. On with the sterescopic show, anyway – this week I’m looking at Rift games/experiments which are based to some degree around the concept of sitting in a chair. This turns out to be far more fertile ground with reality-shifting cleverness than it might sound.

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Love You All

By Nathan Grayson on July 23rd, 2014.

Hey RPS,

There was a time when I thought I’d never write this post. I still kind of can’t believe I am, to be honest.

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Lo-Fi Let’s Play: Gruds in Space

By Leigh Alexander on July 23rd, 2014.

I’ve been doing a series of Let’s Play videos exploring old adventures, text games and lost design forms from the 1980s Apple IIe and Commodore 64 era. In a time when young men shout over new action games, I will talk softly over strange old ones. Come along on a visitation of a different era that’s one part meditations on my childhood, one part adventure game criticism, and one part preservation effort. Bonus: Everyone says the quiet talk, lo-fi handmade feel and keyboard tapping triggers ASMR responses. Please enjoy!

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Cardboard Children – Jamaica

By Robert Florence on July 22nd, 2014.

Hello youse.

Every home should have a good family game. What is a family game? It’s a game that the whole family can play, obviously. Can’t you work any of this stuff out for yourself? If I have to explain every single concept to you we’re going to be here all day! Anyway, a great family game is something that mum, dad, the kids, granny and the weird lodger in the basement can play. It is easy to explain, plays quick, and great fun. It also helps if it looks beautiful. Sadly, a game with all these qualities is as rare as rocking horse shit (which is even more rare nowadays – jeez, when was the last time you even saw a rocking horse?). Oh, but, anyway, point is, I got a family game for you. Read on.

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Wot I Think: Dynetzzle Extended

By John Walker on July 22nd, 2014.

Dynetzzle Extended may be the worst name of a game I’ve ever seen, but the puzzle is interesting. I took a look at the free 10 level version back in March, and now the full 25 level version is released, for a mere single dollar. Does it expand nicely into a larger puzzle game? Here’s wot I think:

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Editorial: Game Names Are Almost Universally Terrible

By Graham Smith on July 22nd, 2014.

This book should exist.

NEW SINGLE PURPOSE CONSULTING FIRM TARGETS GAME INDUSTRY
Don’t Name Your Game That, Ltd. Has One Piece Of Advice And You Can Have It For Free

Bath, EnglandJuly 21, 2014–Don’t Name Your Game That, an internet-based consulting firm today announced that it would lend voice and cheap jokes to the internal screams of followers of game news everywhere. “It’s time to put an end to forgettable, unsearchable, derivative, non-sensical and downright awful names everywhere,” said company founder Dr. Stephen Farts.

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Mode Seven Explain Why Frozen Cortex Left The Frendzone

By Alec Meer on July 22nd, 2014.

Frozen Synapse developers Mode Seven have been quietly talking about changing the name of their exceedingly clever but regrettably-titled strategic robo-sports game Frozen Endzone for some time now. Tired of all the friendzone puns and concerned about how much it overstated the American Football aspect, they’ve only gone and done it. Frozen Endzone is no more: as of today we have Frozen Cortex. Or, Frendzone is no more: now we have FroCo.

The name isn’t all that’s changed. As of any minute now, Frozen Cortex also boasts a new, more heavily sci-fi look, revamped AI, a big performance boost and Mac/Linux builds. This is a major update, not a mere rebrand. I had a chat with Mode Seven’s Paul Taylor and Ian Hardingham about why they’ve changed so much after so long – including their reasoning for (and risks of) that rebranding. Read on for that and a glimpse of the new-look game.
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The Lighthouse Customer: Robocraft

By Christopher Livingston on July 21st, 2014.

War never changes. It just rearranges.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, building, driving, and flying robotic cube-tanks in the free-to-play Robocraft.

My robotank, Killdeathinator — named for all the killing and deathinating it’s been dishing out — has just entered its 5th iteration. Killdeathinator Mk 1 had four wheels, a couple guns, and was made of weak plastic cubes. Mk 2 added more wheels — ones I can steer, which I’ve found to be fairly important — and a radar dish to track enemies. Now, lined with gleaming copper armor and bristling with cannons, its become a fairly durable ground assault vehicle. Time to kick it up a notch. Killdeathinator wants to fly.

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