Infinifactory: Early Access Impressions

By John Walker on January 22nd, 2015.

Oh my goodness, Infinifactory is difficult.

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Hands On With HoloLens And Augmented Reality Minecraft

By Laura Hudson on January 22nd, 2015.

“Is it real?” I ask. I’m looking around at the landscape of Mars, where a dusty, rocky desert stretches in every direction, reddish mountains rising in the distance. It looks so vivid, so strangely plausible that it’s hard to believe that I’m actually looking at the surface of another planet and not the set of a sci-fi movie.

The gentleman who works for Microsoft assure me that it is, in fact, real—depending on how you think about it. I’m currently wearing a prototype version of the HoloLens, a new augmented reality headset announced yesterday by Microsoft, and exploring real three-dimensional images collected from the Mars Curiosity rover using a tool called OnSight.

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Hello, I Have Anxiety Disorder – And Gaming Helps

By John Walker on January 22nd, 2015.

I have generalised anxiety disorder. It’s a condition that falls under “anxiety disorders”, which also includes OCD, despite more often being categorised under “depression”. It sort of fits with both. It’s an obsessive condition that causes someone to be unable to control their fear, to become entangled in irrational and debilitating worry, and at its extreme, to be afflicted by horrible intrusive thoughts.

I’ve had AD since I was in my early 20s, undiagnosed until my late 20s. Those were some fairly horrendous times, not being able to understand why I couldn’t cope with basic situations, and utterly terrified that the awful thoughts I was having might be real. Too scared to tell anyone, and too fearful that if I did I’d be feared, I suffered badly. As it turned out, it was telling someone, anyone, that was the first step to getting a great deal better.

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Dote Night: Build Me A Smite Build

By Philippa Warr on January 21st, 2015.

Victory! (at Smite)

I said a little while back that I wanted to open up Dote Night to include interesting things across the MOBA spectrum so this is the first foray into that. It doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten Dota 2 in any way, shape or form, nor does it mean there won’t be Dote Nights about Dota, but I’d like to try out a few things and see how they go. This piece is about how item builds work in Smite. It’s an aspect of MOBAs which has never come naturally to me but after speaking with Smite expert and analyst James ‘Krett’ Horgan it started making a lot more sense – and I don’t just mean for Smite. After transcribing this I went to play a few games of Dota and was able to approach my hero builds far more confidently and effectively. So yes, this is about a different MOBA but it exists as part of a broader scene.

If you’re looking for a quick and dirty version of what’s here you should head to the build guide cheat sheet we’ve done as a pared down companion, otherwise… read on!

“The core of every build in every game that has a build – even an MMO like World of Warcraft – is the methodology,” explains Krett. “What are you doing and how does your build help you do it?”

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Basic Smite Builds: Krett’s Quick And Dirty Guide

By Philippa Warr on January 21st, 2015.

Smite builds

Fun fact: we have a monstrously large article coming up which goes into a lot of detail about Smite builds thanks to expert and analyst James ‘Krett’ Horgan. BUT because you might also want build info to hand in a quick and easy-to-digest format we’ve made this – a separate Smite build cheat sheet with the bare bones information.

The idea here is not to be exhaustive but to give new players a basic structures for item builds on each character class so you don’t feel lost. Then you can start to play around with your own ideas, fill in the blanks, or tweak some of the items to fit specific situations. For a more in-depth look and to see how items work together check out the monsterpiece which will be going up as Dote Night’s first real foray into the world of other MOBAs.

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First Look: Battlefleet Gothic – Armada

By Adam Smith on January 21st, 2015.

The news that an adaptation of Games Workshop’s Battlefleet Gothic was in development made for happy reading last week but solid facts were thin on the ground. We knew that the game would be real-time rather than turn-based, which was cause for concern in some quarters, and that four factions would be available. Now, following a meeting with the developers yesterday, I have all of the details necessary to soothe concerns. Armada is packed with clever ideas and I’ve dissected them below.

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Lo-Fi Let’s Play: Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?

By Leigh Alexander on January 21st, 2015.

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 and beyond. In a time when young men shout over new action games, I will talk softly over strange old ones.

When it comes to my Lo-Fi Let’s Play series, I have just a few hard-and-fast rules. One: No twitch, no arcade. Two: No hits. Don’t ask me to play Monkey Island and King’s Quest unless it’s New Year’s Eve and you’re paying for my party, so to speak.

But today, I buckled. It’s the season for copious work travel, conferences and speaking engagements, and when I found myself in a Helsinki airport on the way to Malta with an hour to kill, I got this itch. In the car to the airport, the Finnish cab driver was scrolling through his dashboard computer, trying to find Malta on the map, I think so that he could tell me how much more daylight I could expect there than here, when the sun has set each day at 3:30 PM after cold-rinsed mornings of perfectly-white skies. Here, I took a jog to the sea, or what I thought was the sea. What are these snowfields, I wondered? Oh, it is the sea, totally frozen.

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Cardboard Children – Lords of Vegas

By Robert Florence on January 20th, 2015.

Hello youse.

Sometimes you look at a board game’s box and you say to yourself “I am never going to roar and pump my fist in the face of my enemies playing this thing.” Some games look like fist pumpers, and some just don’t. Lords of Vegas doesn’t look like a fist pumper at all. It’s all BUILD CASINOS and EXPAND YOUR INFLUENCE and MAKE MONEY. Where exactly in all of that are you going to pump a fist?

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The Later Early Edition: Sunless Sea, 6 Months On

By Alec Meer on January 20th, 2015.

Starting an irregular series in which I revisit Early Access games a few months on from when I first tried them. Have they come along much? Does a finished game seem a realistic prospect?

Bit of a silly one to start this series with, given Sunless Sea hits 1.0 – and thus release status on February 6th, with a major update due around that time, but I’ve been yearning to revisit Sunless Sea’s mesmerisingly-written and impeccably menacing Fallen London for some time, so let’s do this anyway.

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Wot I Think: Cat Goes Fishing

By John Walker on January 20th, 2015.

I’ll have a quick look at Cat Goes Fishing, I thought to myself, pleased by its silly name. It’s been a few hours since. I’m forcing myself to stop playing to write this, because it’s plainly ludicrous that I’m so, er, hooked. A game in which a cat goes fishing. But a hugely charming one, and surprisingly involved. It’s Ridiculous Fishing with the “ridiculous” replaced by “serene”. Here’s wot I think:

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RPS Asks: Which Games Demand Too Much Time?

By Philippa Warr on January 20th, 2015.

kerpow

I have some pretty big games in my life. They’re mostly MOBAs but I’m still trying to make my way through one huge RPG, keep up with Destiny and I made the mistake of picking up Endless Legend just before Christmas. Add in a full-time job and the vaguest semblance of a social life and suddenly any new games which last more than, say, 30 minutes become part of an organisational nightmare.

Having read the RPS comments sections for while now I suspect I’m not alone in this. Open-world survival games, lane pushers, strategy games, sprawling RPGs often seem to be in competition with university, work, personal projects (or maybe just with other games we love) for our time and energy.

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Have You Played… Quake?

By Graham Smith on January 20th, 2015.

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

Spawn, sprint, left turn, elevator, shoot at the dog, cross the bridge, through the door, shoot the exploding barrel, left, right, right, hit the button to cover an acid pit, turn right down a corridor, hit the buttons down the ramps, hopping banisters to save time, left, right, up the ramp and hit the exit. Steam estimates that it takes 55 seconds to download Quake on a modern connection. I can complete the first level of its first world in 20 seconds. But it takes me no time at all to remember each part of the first first-person shooter I played.

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So I Bought A Mechanical Keyboard

By Alec Meer on January 20th, 2015.

Note – this piece is aimed at people who are as ignorant about mechanical keyboards as I was until around a week ago (and probably still am), not at old hands.

For the longest time, my major interest in a keyboard has been whether it’s got big, easy multimedia controls. Apart from that, it’s a plastic thing with buttons on it, right? Then people (including our resident tech-head Jeremy) started talking about mechanical keyboards and how they were the best thing to happen to both typing and gaming since Ian Keyboard invented the keyboard in 1426, and I started to worry about being left behind.
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