Wot I Think: The Dream Machine Chapter 5

By John Walker on December 15th, 2014.

The Dream Machine‘s episodic structure has been… sporadic. Chapters one and two came out in January 2011, with the rest promised soon after. Chapter 3 appeared in November 2011, taking longer than expected. Which was nothing compared to chapter 4, which finally appeared in August 2013. It was quite a wait, and rather a short entry. It’s been slightly over a year since, and now we have Chapter 5 – the biggest part of the game yet. Here’s wot I think.

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Have You Played… DmC: Devil May Cry?

By Adam Smith on December 15th, 2014.

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

It’s a mark of how much I enjoyed ridiculously named reboot DmC: Devil May Cry that I’m absolutely gutted because there’s no sign of a sequel. It was the daftest game I played in 2013 and one of the deftest as well. Having alienated many fans of the series before release, by featuring a different brand of posturing pretty man than they were used to, Ninja Theory’s gloriously over the top romp seemed doomed to fail, but it’s a beautifully barmy concoction.

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Hands On: Total War – Arena

By Adam Smith on December 15th, 2014.

Total War: Arena reminds me of Magicka: Wizard Wars, a game that I’m extremely fond of. Wizard Wars took the chaotic elemental combos of Magicka and directed them into a team-based multiplayer showdown. If it had simply been a team deathmatch iteration of Arrowhead’s original concept though, it wouldn’t have captured my attention for quite as long as it did. Arena strikes a similar chord because it presents one aspect of Total War intelligently re-imagined as a short-form multiplayer game that hasn’t forgotten its strategic roots. After an hour of play, I’m eager for more.

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The Bestest Best Strategy 2014 – Distant Worlds: Universe

By RPS on December 14th, 2014.

Moving from the earliest steps toward the stars to space operas and sci-fi dreams that could be responsible for an expanded universe of spin-off novels, Distant Worlds has never seen a horizon that it doesn’t want to touch. It copes with the enormous scale by allowing players to pick and choose their responsibilities. Yes, the game was first released four years ago and, yes, it’s an expensive and acquired taste. But this is the most complete version of one of the most unique, enormous and engrossing strategy games ever made.

Adam: They should have sent a poet. And a playwright, and possibly a novelist or two.

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Dark Futures: Clint Hocking

By RPS on December 14th, 2014.

Every Sunday, we reach deep into Rock, Paper, Shotgun’s 141-year history to pull out one of the best moments from the archive. This week, we re-visit Kieron’s Dark Futures series, which spoke to the leaders of the immersive sim. This is part five, an essay written by Clint Hocking.

Clint Hocking’s career started with sending his resume into Ubisoft Monreal “on a lark”. Six week’s later, he’s working on the original Splinter Cell, ending up as a designer/scriptwriter. After its enormous success, he rose to the position of Creative Director on Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and Far Cry 2 before leaving this year to chase new horizons. Away from his game design, he’s a prolific essayist on his own blog. And in keeping in that, rather than a traditional interview, Clint has wrote us an essay…

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The Sunday Papers

By Graham Smith on December 14th, 2014.

Sundays are for catching up on emails, commissioning words about videogames, and plotting for a Christmas break. Let’s go.

  • Andy Baio – he of Waxy.org – wrote this week about an experiment of sorts he carried out with his son, by introducing him to videogames in chronological order. I’ve seen a lot of different opinions of this, but it seems to me like a lovely story of a parent being active in playing games with their kid.
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    Have You Played… TowerFall Ascension?

    By Graham Smith on December 14th, 2014.

    Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

    Local multiplayer games have made an unlikely resurgence these past two years, meaning there’s half a dozen I’ve played and loved during the period. Gang Beasts is great though still feels incomplete. Nidhogg is great but I found, after years of playing the free version, that my enjoyment of its full release was shortlived. It’s TowerFall: Ascension, then, that I would recommend to anyone who wanted some single-screen gaming.

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    No, Please No, Not Another Game Player Has Baby Article

    By John Walker on December 14th, 2014.

    Here is my dilemma. It’s nice, I think, to approach supporter posts with a desire to be more personal, more intimate, to shine the light on ourselves a little more brightly. Or to be even more self-indulgent than ever, if you’d prefer to think of it that way. So when considering what to write about in my weekly supporter column, I like to think about what’s going on in my life, pick a lens to look through. Except, four weeks ago my first son was born, and good grief, who wants to hear about that?

    Oh my goodness, how many more games-journalists-becoming-parents can the internet cope with? And who is it for? People without kids are likely far less interested to read about an experience they don’t relate to. People who don’t want kids and never intend to have them can feel marginalised, excluded. People who want kids and haven’t yet, or those who want them and cannot have them, can find the whole topic misery-inducing. (My wife and I were trying for three years before ours came along, and I can testify that it’s really shit.) And people with kids already went through it, roll their eyes at the naivety of it, or don’t want to be reminded of it. Can the internet hold another, “How I game with my kid in my arm” article, without keeling over and just collapsing on the floor?

    Let’s find out!

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    The Bestest Best Worldbuilding Of 2014: Dark Souls 2

    By RPS on December 13th, 2014.

    Dark Souls II may not be the greatest Souls game ever made but despite its flaws, it’s still one of the year’s finest. Behind the hideous enemies and the stern challenge lies a world unlike any other – the combat systems and RPG elements may be at the heart of From’s series, but it’s the world of Drangleic that lingers in the memory.

    Adam: An exercise in archaeology.

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    Have You Played… League Of Legends?

    By Philippa Warr on December 13th, 2014.

    Lols in LoL

    Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

    A little while back I recommended one of the big-name MOBAs in this Have You Played… stream. Now it’s time for another – League of Legends.

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    The RPS Bargain Bucket: Weekend of Evil

    By Cassandra Khaw on December 13th, 2014.

    So many exciting things happened this week and I wish I could share some of it. Alas, I am instead shepherding 13 drunk people around today as the designated sober person, which may or may not entail me worrying about them falling off buildings. Wish me luck. In celebration of this annual event (and because this is my responsibility), have a bucket of bargains and a happy weekend. (Send me plushie photos, darnit all!)

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    Horror: The Games I Can’t Play

    By Philippa Warr on December 13th, 2014.

    :(

    Something I can’t do – have never been able to do – in terms of what I do for a living is enjoy horror games.

    That’s why I’ve decided to talk the matter over with Adam, one of the RPS resident horror fans and the chap whose own most recent supporter post dealt with Five Nights At Freddy’s; a nasty, brutish horror game but one not without merit or skill.

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    Party Games: Do Cocktails And Videogames Mix?

    By Brendan Caldwell on December 12th, 2014.

    Every month, we dispatch Brendan to some of gaming’s best blowouts to schmooze and play party games with the partygoers. This is part three.

    Loading Bar (aka Scenario) is a videogame-themed bar in London that hosts gigs, games and parties. As well as having a cushy basement filled with screens and games consoles, it regularly welcomes groups of Smash Bros devotees or Netrunner fans to take part in friendly tournaments. It also hosts a local multiplayer night called Multiclash, where developers can show off their party games. All this while serving up colourful cocktails with names like “Earthworm Gin” and “Rum: Total War”. Obviously, with all this going on, RPS needed somebody to investigate.

    When I arrive at the bar, located deep in the city’s hipster underbelly of Stoke Newington, there are about five games on show. It is probably best to go through them one by one, giving each its due attention. But before that, a trip to the bar staff is in order. As the night wears on, I find that the cocktails being served to me have become (mostly) synchronised to the games, each a little alcoholic companion that would last only until I finished murdering that wretched blue swordsman in Samurai Gunn, or outpacing that dastardly unicorn in Speedrunners. For the most part, they were pretty damn good. As such, it would only be fair to rate the cocktails as accompaniments alongside the games. What games, you ask? Well, let’s take a look at what we played.

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