Our John wasn’t convinced of action-RPG-with-giant-effing-spiders Victor Vran [official site] when it released this year, but developer Haemimont Games has been working on a few additional features since then, so maybe that’ll swing things around.
Victor Vran [official site] is an unspectacular but fun action-RPG, says our John. Motörhead are a bitchin’ cool rock band, says me. What happens if you combine the two? I stare at my inbox muttering “Huh? Is that… huh?” that’s what. Then I sit down at my telegraph machine to compose a missive to RPS explaining that a Motörhead-themed add-on is coming to Victor Vran.
The unlikely pairing will introduce a new storyline touring landscapes inspired by the many moods of Motörhead, in the expansion named Motörhead through the Ages. I’m imagining Brütal Legend with more ladies wearing hot pants, biker caps, and bullet belts.
RPS Feature Vrantic Action
Good news for you out there in the Republic of RPS: Tropico 5 [official site] has been updated with a map and mission editor packing Steam Workshop support, which means you can now take directly to the comments section to give your best laboured Communism + Collective Land Improvement + Map Sharing gag. It’s only for the Windows Steam version, though.
When our John wanted to click on monsters until they exploded in showers of pennies, blades, and garments, Adam pointed him towards Victor Vran [official site]. The demon-hunting action-RPG had only just launched into Steam Early Access, but John dug it. Unhelpfully, he didn’t leave snappy soundbites like “it blew me away” or “it murdered its way into my heart” – would it kill you, John? – so just trust me on that if you’re too lazy to read his impressions yourself.
Anyway, Victor Vran left Early Access and properly launched today, presumably making it even better. Big updates are still planned for the future, though.
Don’t you hate it when you’re trying to run your country on a system of illegal cheese blackmarkets and then those pesky enemy spies start butting their head in? This must be the sort of thing Angelina Jolie sits around thinking about all day.
And by extension, I myself am like Angelina Jolie in a way as I sit here contemplating my unholy reign upon Tropico [official site]. The game’s fifth entry hit last year, and I should note our Alec wasn’t too hot on it when it released – you can read his words here where he says among other things: “There are some bum notes both tonally and strategically.”
RPS Feature Vrictorious
Well, we’ve got the next action RPG to look forward to!
aRPGs are an odd genre, with there being so popular, but with so few that stand out. Obviously the Diablos, the Torchlights, and the Titan Quests. There’s Path Of Exile, there’s Grim Dawn, and then it gets trickier. The dreary Dungeon Siege games? The clumsy Sacred series? The almost there Van Helsing silliness? I think we may have a game that could sneak into the list, however, with Victor Vran [official site], currently in Early Access.
New Tropico games aren’t appearing as quickly as my brain thinks. This is simply that I now perceive time at such a pace that the world is a dizzying blur around me. If you’d held a knifegun to my headthroat and demanded a release date for Tropico 4, I’d have tried to second-guess myself and suggested late 2012. It was in fact August 2011, and I am an old, confused man, unsure why the Christmasses won’t stop happening. Anyway, my confused rambling aside, Tropico 5 is appearing a very appropriate three years after the last time El Presidente reared his undemocratic city building head, and is now accepting applications for its March beta.
RPS Feature A Findus lasagna on your pillow
I’m not a violent man by any means and that should make me very uneasy about my fondness for gangsters, but I far prefer them to other murderous avatars. I’m thinking pirates, ninja, warfighters and bald space marines. That was reason enough to draw my eyes to Omerta: City of Gangsters when it was first announced and I’ve finally played through the campaign of this city-conquering strategy game. I’ve already swung a baseball bat at the demo but went deeper into the underground in the hope that I’d find something there worth clinging on to.
Omerta: City of Gangsters is out now and I’ve spent many an hour conquering Atlantic City, building an empire of bullets and booze. I’m not quite ready to tell you wot I think so I thought I’d use the posting of the launch trailer as an excuse to spill some secrets in your ear. I expressed my disappointment with the demo shortly after playing it, but I’m much less apathetic now. Omerta is an old-fashioned management game, with a simple but effective campaign structure and few frills, but its pin-striped heart beats steady. It doesn’t have the charm of Tropico, or that game’s simulated civilians, but it wears its theme well and performs turn-based combat in a clunky but effective fashion. Full thoughts later this week.
Omerta’s demo is odd. I’ve been hoping that the game will deliver on its turn-based gangster shenanigans ever since it was announced, but I expected mild disappointment as none of the pre-release media had entirely convinced me. A demo seems like the perfect solution, providing a playable sample and helping my wayward mind to form some basic conclusions. That hasn’t happened. Instead, I’m still left with a strong interest in playing the game that Omerta might be, while at the same time half-convinced that Omerta isn’t going to be that game. You can download the demo for yourself or read on for more meandering opinions and details.
Here’s some Prohibition news: I watched Lawless last year and even though it’s paced badly at times, I enjoyed it and marvelled at Shia TheBeef doing some proper acting. Keep the lad away from Spielberg and Bay and he might have a bright future in the business called ‘show’. Or at least a less obvious one. Omerta takes place in the big city rather than out in the sticks but, like Lawless, it’s about guns, gangsters and odd pacing, the latter due to its turn-based nature. Craig pointed out that the latest trailer is a Mac trailer and it also reuses lots of footage from the previous video, but it does show more of the strategic interface and has a toe-tapping tune.
The first time I heard about Omerta: City of Gangsters, a fellow games journo described it to me as “prohibition era X-COM”. My brain went into overdrive and I trekked across several crowded convention halls, each larger and noisier than the last, in order to sip from this holiest of grails. Flappers, jazz maestros, nickel-a-drink barmen and sharply dressed gangsters combating an alien invasion with nothing more than an old-fashioned, a trumpet and a tommy gun? Sign me up! I had made a grave error. Omerta is X-COM in as much as there is a strategic, personnel and resource management mode paired up with turn-based combat. An updated Gangsters: Organized Crime then? Our first look wasn’t entirely encouraging but will this new combat trailer be more convincing?