John Vs The Trees: Woodcutter Simulator 2013

By John Walker on January 7th, 2014 at 7:00 pm.

I know a classic when I see it. There it is, near the top of Steam’s list of new games: Woodcutter Simulator 2013. Sure, it’s already out-of-date, and likely won’t feature 2014’s most exciting range of woodcutting innovations, but I was prepared to suck that up and get on. I, as a woodcutter, am burly, powerful, able to take on anything. Look at my rugged frame! My bushy woodsman beard! LOOK AT ME HOLDING A CHAINSAW!

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Stanley’s Papers: IGF 2014 Finalists Revealed

By Alec Meer on January 7th, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

I'm pretty sure that's rightr

It’s all been a bit Massively Mainstream Games About Aliens today, so it’s something of a relief to instead turn my gaze to some of the indie highlights of the last and upcoming year. Though that said, the finalists list – the finalistlist – for the 16th annual Independent Games Festival is, while awash with truly splendid games, somewhat short on surprises, which may add fuel to the fires of those who consider the competition to not quite be what it could. Existent huge successes Papers, Please and The Stanley Parable dominate, with Don’t Starve also snagging multiple nods, as does the sadly mobile-only Device 6. Take a look, see if you feel you’re being exposed to new stuff or just reminded of what you already know is ace.
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Evolve: What The Original Left 4 Dead Team Did Next

By Alec Meer on January 7th, 2014 at 5:00 pm.

2014 would seem to be the year in which the games industry has another crack at making primarily multiplayer shooting games work all over again. There’ve been a few false starts in the past, but Destiny and Titanfall are some super-big, super-fat attempts at achieveing enormous mass market success from shooters where narrative takes a backseat. Now Evolve joins the ranks of big games looking for a piece of glossy, next-generation COD-seasoned pie, and it comes from Turtle Rock Studios, those former Valve chums who did the heavy lifting on the original Left 4 Dead.
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Hands on – Alien: Isolation

By Brendan Caldwell on January 7th, 2014 at 4:00 pm.

We have all been burned by past Alien games and I would like us to maintain a healthy scepticism about Creative Assembly’s recently unveiled Alien: Isolation, which I went to see and play just before the turn of the year. With this in mind, I believe it an obligation, before we begin discussing this new threat, to observe a moment of silence in which we can all remember the brave souls we lost to the Colonial Marines disaster.

*an eerie hush envelopes the world as billions of people solemnly mute Spotify*

Thank you.

The good news is that, despite keeping that scepticism intact, my recent hands-on with Isolation has given me cause for hope. With luck (and no small amount of effort from the development team) we are a little closer to having an Alien game that actually captures the feel of the original movie.
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Alien Isolation: The First Trailer

By Alec Meer on January 7th, 2014 at 4:00 pm.



There’s a new Alien game! It’s ok, Gearbox didn’t make it! Total War devs The Creative Assembly did! And it’s Alien rather than Aliens! And it stars Ripley’s daughter! And there’s a whole load of motion-scanner based spookiness! And there’s a preview of it right here! And there’s a trailer below! And it looks all 70s at the start! And and oh just watch it, right.

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Valve Announce Steam Machines With Specs And Prices

By Graham Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 3:00 pm.

I bet this one is expensive.

The Consumer Electronics Show is happening in Las Vegas right now, which is a lot like E3 but full of televisions and Michael Bay instead of videogames. There is at least one thing there of interest to us, though: Valve have been revealing the first concrete details of their Steam Machine partners, including the 14 manufacturers currently making them and the specs and prices of some of those boxes.

Nathan is at the event and we’ll have interviews and impressions to share with you soon, but let’s round-up the news so far.
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The Necromantic Era: Deadbreed

By Adam Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 2:00 pm.

During the long hours of a League of Legends or DOTA 2 session, do you occasionally grimace and howl at the bright colours flashing across the screen? Would you like your champions to be drawn from a pool of necromancers, skellingtons and leather-clad vampires, with not a wisp or an elf in sight? Deadbreed could be the MOBA for you. From a veteran team of developers, including Stefan Ljungqvist who has experience as a member of the Just Cause team, Deadbreed promises to be HARDCORE and it contains more monsters than an abandoned Universal Studios backlot. Battles are 3v3, with AI opponents available if you don’t fancy dealing with spectral smack talk. A trailer lurks in the cold earth below and beta signups are open now.

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The Spectacular 2014 Preview Spectacular – Part Three

By RPS on January 7th, 2014 at 1:00 pm.

You think it’s hard reading about this many games? Imagine writing this thing. RPS has officially worn itself out before the year’s even gotten going properly. But it was worth it, because below is the third part of our ultromegafeature preview of 2014’s crop of PC games. At least those that have been announced already. And now you have it all, filling your calendar. Part one is here, and part two is here. Reading them all in one go will kill you. You’ve been warned.

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Should Have Sent An Accountant: Starbound Sells A Million

By Graham Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 12:00 pm.

The giant brain world: would not go there.

So it turns out a lot of you like games about exploration and building things. Who knew? Starbound, the game that let’s you do that while travelling a universe of alien planets, has sold a million copies. That’s not bad for a game that only came out on December 4th.
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Agent 40 Winks: Hitman Cancelled, Uncancelled

By Alec Meer on January 7th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

Hello there. Things have sounded a little unhappy at Hitman and Kane & Lynch devs IO Interactive for a while now, in the wake of 2012’s Hitman: Subtitle achieving neither the acclaim or the spondoolies it was hoped to. Last year, the Square Enix-owned Danish studio saw half its workforce removed from their jobs, along with claims that the remainder would get to do nothing but Hitman games. Yesterday, reports circulated that the Next Jennifer Hitman game had been quietly garotted. That claim, despite being made on a Square Enix Montreal senior game designer’s LinkedIn profile, has now been denied.
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Now Taking Calls: GhostControl Inc

By Adam Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 10:00 am.

In 2015, the Ghostbusters remake will dominate multiplexes, with its blockbuster cast – Seth Rogen, Will Ferrell and Ben Stiller – grinning at the world from posters on every street corner. Bill Murray will have a cameo, playing the ghost of Garfield, and Slimer will twerk in 97% of his scenes. Don’t worry too much though – nobody will force you to watch it at the cinema. Network television will replay it during every holiday, however, and your children/siblings/pets will inexplicably adore the antics of Stay Puft Girrrl and demand to see that one bit when she dances, using the Empire State Building as a pole.

If that all sounds like too much excitement, perhaps the more tranquil pace of GhostControl Inc will be to your taste. It’s a ghosthunting management sim with turn-based trapping and it’s available now.

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Seeping Asylum: Daylight

By Adam Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 9:00 am.

Scary hospitals filled with things that bump unkind in the night? We’ve all been there. Daylight looks like a sequel to Outlast, a game which initially scared the socks off me and then became so cosily familiar and repetitive that it fit me like a pair of slippers. Daylight mixes up the institutional walkthrough horror by introducing randomisation – the corridors and creeps are different on every playthrough. At first watch, I found the new trailer ridiculous. Who holds a camera phone up in their face at all times? And then I remembered that I often stumble into traffic while checking my tweets or looking for the nearest speakeasy on Google Maps.

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Clint Hocking Leaves Valve, Newell Discusses Sequels

By Adam Smith on January 7th, 2014 at 8:00 am.

Clint Hocking, he of Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and Far Cry 2, has departed from Valve after eighteen months working as a something or other designer and level designer. Meanwhile, Gabe Newell has been talking to noted videogame blog The Washington Post about the company’s structure and strategy. Observant readers will notice that this post contains two pieces of Valve news but not a shred of concrete information about any games in development. I reckon that’s why Hocking left – he designed a couple of levels every week but couldn’t find any games to put them in. After trying to drop a few into DOTA 2 when nobody was looking, he eventually left the building with a bag full of digital architecture.

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