Have You Played… King’s Bounty: The Legend?

By Alec Meer on November 20th, 2014 at 3:30 pm.

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

It’s all too easy to be glum about 1c’s now long-running comedy-fantasy, strategy-RPG series, given its sequels’ resolute resistance to do almost anything new, but let’s put grumbling aside and look back to when King’s Bounty: The Legend was the freshest face in freshtown.
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The Ferelden Scrolls: A Dragon Age Diary, Part 1

By Alec Meer on November 20th, 2014 at 3:00 pm.

are we in New Zealand?

Beginning a new diary series for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Yes, I’m mostly doing this so I have an excuse to play Dragon Age: Inquisition during work hours. There will be spoilers and there will be presumed knowledge, but there probably won’t be much taking anything seriously.

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Section Nein: Ghost In The Shell Online

By Adam Smith on November 20th, 2014 at 2:00 pm.

The trailer for (deep breath) Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex: First Connection Online gave me that Syndicate feeling. Not the same Syndicate feeling that Satellite Reign gives me, alas, but rather the troubling memories of the 2012 FPS-capade. All of the details seem to match. A beloved cyberpunk entity translated into a first-person team-based shooter, in which various classes of modified humans use their tech to murderise one another while gathering points to upgrade the rocket launchers implanted in their knuckles. That said, if you can accept the fact that everyone is shooting everyone else all of the time rather than starring in a post-human Alpha Protocol, it doesn’t look entirely terrible.

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Slot Together Wooden Insect Models In Zen Build

By Alice O'Connor on November 20th, 2014 at 1:00 pm.

Why won't the head go on? I must be missing a part.

“Enter the exciting world of insects with Exciting World of Insects, a new biweekly magazine about the exciting world of insects. Build one of the insect kingdom’s deadliest hunters issue-by-issue with real wood parts for a praying mantis! The first issue’s only 50p!”

The TV commercials downplayed that later issues cost far more than I could ever afford, leaving my childhood shelves covered in jigsaw-cut wooden mantis limbs, T. rex skulls, stag beetle carapaces, and Eiffel Tower crowns. Twenty years later, I might finally complete one, thanks to Zen Build. It’s a free puzzler about assembling wooden models, and I cannot finish this mantis.

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Robots In The Skies: Project HON

By Adam Smith on November 20th, 2014 at 12:00 pm.

Project HON is a game about mechs dropping out of the sky to have a block party. In the trailer below, you’ll see one plucky fellow rollerblading along the seafront and two clumsy chaps taking part in a breakdance competition, which takes a turn for the worse when they accidentally clobber one another with their giant flailing feet and fists. Oops! The party doesn’t stop though – everybot involved is happy to laugh it off and carry on with the festivities. One gargantuan guy takes a ride on his motorbike, which is contained within his pelvis, and the fun only stops when two lairy chumps who’ve had one too-many gallons of crude oil beat the ferrous faeces out of one another.

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Freeware Garden: Jet/Lag

By Konstantinos Dimopoulos on November 20th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

Procedural dungeons weren’t created solely for the RPG-style hacking and slashing of monsters and that’s why Jet/Lag is being labeled a hyper minimal rogue-like-like-like. It might take place in some of the noisiest, most randomly generated dungeons possible, but there’s nothing here to remind you of roleplaying or of turn-based mechanics.

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Minimalist Footy: Super Sec Soccer

By Alice O'Connor on November 20th, 2014 at 10:00 am.

Kick!

I’ve gushed about local multiplayer minimalist sports games before, those lovely games which strip sports down, tossing out slow bits and rebuilding them as frenetic and weird games. It’s a pretty great movement/genre/thing. Today brings the release of another reinvented sport, a bouncy version of football this time, in Super Sec Soccer. It offers 90-second matches of 5-a-side where the ball bounces back off boundary lines and the action is never slowed by free kicks, corners, penalties, fouls, or anything. It has matches vs. AI too, but it looks like one best played with a pal.

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Hijacking Hijinks: Heat Signature

By Adam Smith on November 20th, 2014 at 9:00 am.

Judging by the new trailer for Heat Signature, two things are essential in a Tom Francis game – manipulation of interconnected systems and comical physics. Gunpoint’s infiltration often involved tapping into electrical systems and adopting a smart tactical overview, but usually ended with trouser-propulsion and instinctive defenestration. Heat Signature’s procedural spaceships provide similarly fertile ground for both forward planning and farce. The video shows two missions in full but really comes into its own when Tom decides to hijack a ship for no good reason, plotting a route to the cockpit and isolating the crew by sealing doors. Once he has the helm, explosions occur.

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Offline This – Elite Dangerous Refund Plans Detailed

By Alice O'Connor on November 20th, 2014 at 8:00 am.

Little bleak out here.

When Frontier Developments announced a week ago that they’d scrapped Elite: Dangerous‘s promised offline singleplayer mode, they were a little hazy on what would happen for folks who wanted a refund. It was a feature Frontier had listed on the Kickstarter that raised over £1.5 million, after all, and one they still teased as Elite went through its expensive paid alpha and beta stretches. Well, Frontier now have some vague policy on refunds, and it’s questionable: if you’re played at all, you can’t have one.

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Dote Night: Foreseer’s Contract And We Need Megawings

By Philippa Warr on November 19th, 2014 at 9:00 pm.

A spectral explosion

Part of a miscellany of serious thoughts, animal gifs, and anecdotage from the realm of MOBAs/hero brawlers/lane-pushers/ARTS/tactical wizard-em-ups. One day Pip might even tell you the story of how she bumped into Na’Vi’s Dendi at a dessert buffet cart.

The current big news in the Dota 2 community is the kerfuffle surrounding the Foreseer’s Contract. A short comic heralded the event on Friday and served as an introduction to the newest hero on the roster, Oracle (you can find him in the test client at time of writing but not in the regular game).

Why does the coming update make players – myself included – so concerned?

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Lara Croft And The Dynamically Difficult Co-op Puzzles

By Alice O'Connor on November 19th, 2014 at 8:00 pm.

Wait, do we go on 3 or 3 then go?

I haven’t mentioned Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris since Square Enix announced it during E3 in June, not out of malice, just distraction. I’m sure dear Lara would understand me forever chasing exciting new treasures and adventures. We have an awful lot in common, really.

I had been slightly concerned that going from two-player co-op to four might signal a shift away from Guardian of Light‘s puzzling side, going more shooty-shooty, but am now reassured. A new video digs into how Crystal Dynamics are designing puzzles that scale from one player to four, so cooperation is still as important as bullets.

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The Elitist, Part Five: Hunting Dogs

By Brendan Caldwell on November 19th, 2014 at 7:00 pm.

Brendan continues his life as space misfit in our Elite Dangerous Diary. In this final entry, he finds himself settling down among the stars with a steady delivery job. But how long can the simple life last?

There she is, the Asp Explorer. A gargantuan beast of a spaceship, she is able to blast every wannabe outlaw out of the sky and still jump 10 lightyears to drop off one-hundred tonnes of coffee to some jittery, caffeine-starved miners two systems away. Able to function both as a military vehicle and a civilian transport, she is the interstellar equivalent of a Land Rover. Standard fittings include multi-cannons, heat sinks, point defence turrets. Average engine mass of 500 tonnes, power usage threshold of 17.00mw. She is wonderful. I watch as the Asp veers over my head, out of the docking bay and into the black beyond. The Asp is not my ship. No. This is my ship…

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Gothic Americana Adventure: Fallow

By Alice O'Connor on November 19th, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

Oh. Sure.

‘Music I enjoy persisting on my desktop once I’ve alt-tabbed out’ isn’t at the top of my Official List Of Things I Look For In Games which guides my every professional decision, but I certainly do appreciate it. Playing Fallow’s demo, I’ve left sonambulist Isabelline standing in front of monuments to the families who died to a mysteries ancient danger that swept the Americas, because it’s playing twangly guitar with soft wailing (musical saw, perhaps?) over crickets chirping. The adventure game’s stirring up ace eerie and mournful gothic Americana, you’ll see (and hear).

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