Hexchat: Watch Civ: Beyond Earth’s Panel Discussion

By Alice O'Connor on April 17th, 2014 at 1:00 pm.

Looking... 'hexy.' Wait, no, 'hexcellent.' How about 'hexciting?'

Perhaps I’m unfairly stereotyping Civilization fans, but I broadly imagine that they’re the type who’ll eagerly watch a panel of developers talk about the next game for half an hour, then perhaps rewatch it, wringing every last fact and morsel of information into their dry eyes. What I’m trying to say is, the panel discussion where Civilization: Beyond Earth was revealed is now online in talkie format, and I imagine you might like to watch it so I’m posting about it on Rock, Paper, Shotgun where you might see it.

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Second Screen Shotgun: Salvaged

By Ben Barrett on April 17th, 2014 at 12:00 pm.

Despite how we, you or some ridiculous “they” may rant and rave about the legions of samey military shooters or other popular genre, games are the realm of the new and PC gaming most of all. Salvaged is right out there towards the edge of the new. It takes the tactical action of XCOM and places it on a touch device, controlled in real-time, with the first person views of soldiers showing up on your monitor. It’s a properly two-screen game, trying to simulate being an elite commander more accurately by getting rid of our so 20th century control mechanisms. I first saw it at Rezzed this year, where twelve member nu-team Opposable Games positively filled up the Leftfield Collection’s hallway, along with the sizable crowd. It’s now up on Kickstarter, chasing $125k, and you can see the pitch video, as well as my thoughts having spoken to them a little, below.

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Swimming Upstream: Twitch Sells, Funds Indie Games

By Nathan Grayson on April 17th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

I've got those millions-of-random-Internet-kids-screaming-in-my-head-at-all-once blues

Twitch has its fair share of problems, but there’s no denying the utter ubiquity of the massive videogame streaming service. Heck, I use it for two separate shows here on RPS, and I’m sure plenty of you stream out your cursing-and-bad-joke-ridden exploits as well. It’s interesting, then, to see what Twitch has decided to do with the powder keg of potential influence sitting right beneath its purple buttocks. Its latest decision? A move into game sales and – in one special case – funding. You can now purchase Vlambeer’s madly addictive Nuclear Throne from Twitch. Meanwhile, the Twitch Plays Pokemon inspired Choice Chamber is having its Kickstarter funding matched dollar-for-dollar by the streaming goliath.

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Gracilevania: Heart Forth, Alicia

By Adam Smith on April 17th, 2014 at 10:00 am.

I think the title is an instruction – ‘Let your heart go forth, Alicia!’. A bit like ‘Chin up, Alicia’, ‘Put your best foot forward, Alicia’ or ‘Flying elbow drop, Alicia!’. The game behind the instruction is a gorgeous Metroidvania sort of thing, starring a warrior-wizard lady with a whip and a collection of spells. The graphics aren’t ‘retro’ simply in the sense that they look dated. Take a look at the video, being sure not to turn off the sound during the odd voiceover, and you’ll see a side-scroller that looks and sounds as lovely as many nineties console greats. Alicia’s heart has led her to Kickstarter, of course, and with 29 days left to go there’s already just shy of $15,000 in the bank. $45,000 more to go.

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More Like Wargame: Rad Dragon

By Ben Barrett on April 17th, 2014 at 9:00 am.

Yay! Explosions!

I’ll admit that I don’t often know what the hell is going on. This is a blanket statement that applies to many areas of my life – games, meals, showers – I’ve had confusion during all of them. But it’s not often that a trailer will leave me with quite the same pleasant non-understanding as finding a surprise Terry’s Chocolate Orange in my bed. The latest from the amusingly named RTS Wargame: Red Dragon managed that and, as I’ve discovered in researching this post, seems to have done the same to Graham. There’s just something about its collection of modern military hardware and explosion addiction that numbs my brain into quiet, happy appreciation. Hopefully you’ll see what I mean below.

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Tactical Terraforming: Imagine Earth

By Adam Smith on April 17th, 2014 at 8:00 am.

Imagine Earth’s demo reminded me of Project Godus, which is a bit like having a face that reminds me of the kid who used to bully me at school and showed up a decade and a half later in the toilets of a dingy nightclub, horribly drunk and tearfully apologetic. In both situations, the unintended reminder inspires a mixture of anger and pity that I’m choosing to call ‘angety’. Initially, Imagine Earth was a catalyst for ‘angety’. I played on though, clicking and collecting resources through the tutorial, and soon enough I was enjoying myself. The playfields are smaller than those in Godus and rather than expanding simply for the sake of it, Imagine Earth’s colonies must be balanced and controlled. Take a look, or try the demo now.

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Impressions: Shadowrun Online Early Access

By Rich Stanton on April 16th, 2014 at 9:00 pm.

The honeymoon period for Kickstarter is long over. There are a number of reasons why but perhaps the most impactful is the failure of several high-profile campaigns to deliver what was promised, or going full Darth Vader: ‘We are altering the deal, pray we don’t alter it any further.’ Such drek leads us to Shadowrun Online – a game that was due for release in May 2013, but on March 31 2014 crept onto Steam Early Access, available for sale to non-backers at the princely sum of £25. So what’s going on?

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Binding of Isaac: Rebirth is Going To Be Amazing

By Ben Barrett on April 16th, 2014 at 8:00 pm.

Quick, the RPS hivemind has retired to a snoozing chamber in London to absorb more knowledge into the glorious whole, so let’s have a party. It’ll be full of blood and guts and dead animals and religious subtexts! Not your sort of party? You probably haven’t played enough Binding of Isaac, the gory 2D roguelike from way back in the mists of time, 2011. It was one of the first in the long line of every-run-is-different action games from the past few years and (particularly with the DLC) is fucking brilliant. Since we last heard from dev Mr. Edmund McMillen, he’s been hard at work on a remake/expansion and putting updates on the game’s blog. The main purpose is to get away from its Flash trappings so it will run acceptably on a larger number of machines, plus allow some console ports. However, there’s also been music, item and enemy reveals, the best of which I’ve hunted down, cried at until they died and hung the corpses of on the wall below.

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Dwarf Fortress: The Detailed Roguelike That’s Easy To Play

By Graham Smith on April 16th, 2014 at 7:00 pm.

Dwarf Fortress is famous for producing anecdotes by the minute. The two-man, twelve-year, donation-funded indie project weaves together procedurally generated geography, civilizations and histories to create a rich fantasy world. It simulates its characters – standard fare like dwarves, elves, goblins, etc. – down to the most minute detail, and when all its systems combine, the results are often hilarious, occasionally tragic, and always surprising.

It’s also blissfully easy to play. The game is free to download and easy to install, the UI comes with a detailed and handy help system, and there’s a community wiki full of guides – not that you’ll need them. I started from scratch last night and was having fun immediately. Let me tell you about my experience.

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Fixed: Second Episode of Broken Sword 5 Slithers Out

By Alice O'Connor on April 16th, 2014 at 6:30 pm.

What costume shall the poor girl wear?

Splitting Broken Sword: The Serpent’s Curse into two episodes may have helped Revolution Software make good on its plan to release the retro adventure revival in 2013, not to mention earn a few pennies sooner rather than later, but unsurprisingly left it feeling incomplete. Though our crack adventure game mercenary Richard ‘Demo Dick’ Cobbett enjoyed the game, he noted that with this split, “The catch is that as well as splitting the raw story in half, Broken Sword 5 has been thematically halved.” He wasn’t overly thrilled about investigating an insurance claim rather than a supposed supernatural curse, see.

The two halves are now united, as the second episode launched tonight. Hopefully it introduces the devilish thrill Richard felt lacking, and right now he’ll be off with George and Nico larking about with a couple of Satans and a few Draculas or whatever it is he wants. I don’t know, I haven’t played it.

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Fallen Falling: Pantheon Development On Hold

By Alice O'Connor on April 16th, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

A castle we might never explore

By now we surely all understand that Kickstarting a game is a bit of a gamble: we rarely have a clear idea of how it’ll turn out, and sometimes if it’ll even be finished. At least Kickstarters have a clear goal to work towards, though, and will only take your money if they hit the sum devs figure will let them finish it. Open-ended crowdfunding is even riskier, as they’ll take your money but may never get enough to finish the game. Which is what has happened to Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen.

The MMORPG headed by former EverQuest lead designer Brad McQuaid has been shaking its own crowdfunding bucket after a Kickstarter campaign fell short, and has now run out of money. It’s hoping it’ll land an investor but the game’s not really going anywhere until hypothetical saviours come along.

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