Posts Tagged ‘impressions’

Eyes-On: Mordheim – City of the Damned

By Adam Smith on August 18th, 2014.

A warlock with a wooden leg was the highlight of my first day at Gamescom. I didn’t know a huge amount about Mordheim: City of the Damned before I sat down to watch a live demonstration of a typical mission, but half an hour later I was telling anyone who would listen that it deserved far more attention. It’s Warhammer Fantasy with a hint of XCOM, procedural maps and the kind of persistent injuries that require false limbs. If it shapes up even half as good as it looks, it might be one of the best Games Workshop digital adaptations to date.

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Impressions: Lovecraftian Citybuilder Clockwork Empires

By Alec Meer on August 14th, 2014.

Clockwork Empires is a citybuilding/Lovecraftian survival sim from Gaslamp Games, they of the splendid Dungeons of Dredmor, in which you manage and protect Imperial colonists attempting to build a life on a new frontier. A new frontier which just so happens to contain Other Creatures. While it might be a dramatic departure from the successful roguelike that went before it, it does retain the horror-comedy tone. It arrives on Steam Early Access tomorrow, but I’ve been playing it for the last few days.
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Impressions: Pure Pool

By Adam Smith on August 12th, 2014.

Adam didn't add alt-text messages to this post.

Does anyone expect a pool game to try anything radical? Sure, it’d be interesting if there were tiny little people running around on the table, in danger of being squished by the balls, and I wouldn’t be particularly adverse to some sort of power up that changed the cue ball into a Pac-Manstrosity that devoured anything it struck and pooped out pills and ashes – but pool is pool. Making a good pool game involves recreating the rules, mixing in some decent ball physics and (possibly) figuring out an interesting way to present a career mode. Pure Pool is not content to simply do what others have done, but its ambition is the cause of its downfall.

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Impressions: Road Rash Spiritual Sequel Road Redemption

By Alec Meer on August 8th, 2014.

“What’s the point of remaking games?” is a familiar question. The answers can be similarly rote: “modern values”, “the audience demanded it”, “publishers abandoned the genre prematurely.” Road Redemption, which is ’90s motorbikes’n'baseball bats hit Road Rash by any other name, offers a stronger answer: “physics.” The physics of rending metal and the physics of plummeting bodies.
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Impressions: Road Not Taken

By John Walker on August 6th, 2014.

There’s a reason this is titled “Impressions”, and not “Wot I Think”. That is, I’m really no good at this game. Or, this game is incredibly difficult. Road Not Taken is a combination of sokobanish puzzling, Triple Town object combination, and roguelite imminent failure. I’ve been playing for a couple of days, and I’m really struggling to get past what is ostensibly the fourth level. Thing is, I’ve been absolutely loving my time playing it.

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Impressions: Crypt of the Necrodancer

By Alec Meer on July 30th, 2014.

Crypt of the Necrodancer blends roguelikes with rhythm action, neatly makes that wild concept work, and is out on Early Access today. I’ve been dipping my twitching toes in and out of it for the last couple of weeks.

I’ve long been aware of my own challenging relationship with rhythm – although I did take a certain pride in people moving away from my frenzied, unpredictable whirling in clubs – but struggling to cope with even Crypt of the Necrodancer’s sound latency calibration tool was a blow. I stared at the blinking icons and listened to the test tone I couldn’t seem to predict, gripped by professional terror. Somehow I’d decided it was a great idea to write about a game based on rhythm. Now, excuses rushes through my brain. “I damaged both my index fingers while making a sandwich.” “My middle ear blew because my baby screamed too loud.” “It turns out I’m allergic to the word ‘crypt.”

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The Wicked And The Weird: Darkwood Impressions

By Adam Smith on July 25th, 2014.

I’ve been looking forward to Darkwood for a long time. It’s a top-down survival horror game with crafting elements, but early videos contained a hint of surrealism that helped the game to stand out from the crowd. Now that it has launched in Early Access, I’ve spent an hour exploring the early stages. It’s a slow-paced Teleglitch, a survival horror game by way of Ice-Pick Lodge and Stalker. A few interface issues aside, it lives up to expectations in grand style. There are some spoilers for the prologue section below and I reckon it’s worth going in completely cold, but fear not – I’ll provide a second spoiler warning before going into detail.

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Hands-On With Bedlam, The FPS About FPSes

By Alec Meer on July 25th, 2014.

I’m rocket-jumping over Helm’s Deep. I’m pinning Nazis to 1940s French churches with catapult bolts. I’m shooting Strogg-homages in metal corridors with a chunky, low-res shotgun, and frankly that much Quake IIiness is enjoyable enough in and of itself that it doesn’t need any era-mixing funny business anyway. I’m finding glitches that transport me – and whichever weapons I’ve accrued – across and through a brief history of first-person shooters, with occasional sidetrips to other eras and genres of gaming.

I’m a gun on legs, because Bedlam is a game all about shooting games that were comfortable with being just that, and about a time when the world accepted they were just that, before cutscenes and quick-time events were put in place to pretend there was something more going on in shooting games than just that.
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Impressions: The Triumphs And Struggles Of Xenonauts

By Adam Smith on July 10th, 2014.

Xenonauts is a spiritual successor to UFO: Enemy Unknown, which means that it’s also a spiritual successor to many of the most tense and glorious hours of my teenage years. Following a successful Kickstarter and a period in Early Access, the game has been available for almost a month now. With its loyal approach to the original design, Xenonauts doesn’t step on XCOM’s toes, but I wondered if it could succesfully muscle in on the original game’s territory. Several days of playing later, I have the answer. And some anecdotes about intra-squad romance.

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Impressions – Habitat: A Thousand Generations In Orbit

By Alec Meer on July 9th, 2014.

Habitat: A Thousand Generations in Orbit is a strategy/simulation/survival game about constructing an improbable spacecraft out of debris floating in a post-disaster Earth’s orbit. It’s out on Early Access now.

The first time you move is incredible. You’ve slowly built this absurd, rickety contraption of rockets, buses, burger restaurants, fire-breathing animatronic T-Rex heads and cruise liners, and it looks like a stiff breeze would tear it into so many lethal pieces. Yet now you have to fire up assorted jet engines and thrusters, and make this absurdist space hulk travel across the skies. Never mind that there are deadly, mine-spitting nanoclouds and inconveniently-placed explosive gas cannisters strewn about Earth’s orbit – simply going up and a bit left feels comparable to asking a massive, skinheaded Londoner in a red and white football shirt if he’s a Tottenham supporter.
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Hands And Face On: Alien Isolation On Oculus Rift

By Brendan Caldwell on July 7th, 2014.

Imagine the Xenomorph from Alien is in the room with you right now. Where exactly? You don’t know. But you do know it’s in there. You lean a little forward, peeping over that stack of empty pizza boxes. Meat feast. You have been meaning to tidy those away. You peer into the gloom. You hear something above you. Something scuttling. Something dark. You look up! But it is too late. You have been eaten. Well done, imagination!

Of course, it is looking possible you will not need your imagination to enjoy these scenarios anymore because the folks making Alien: Isolation at Creative Assembley and SEGA have been tinkering with the Oculus Rift development kits and have shown us their deliciously scary ‘prototype’.

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Impressions: Space Run

By Adam Smith on July 3rd, 2014.

Space! It isn’t just about commanding gleaming armadas and piloting sleek starships. No, sir. There’s plenty of time for all that, young cadet, but in a place so vast (space really is quite large) there’s a lot of demand for workers. Janitors and miners have been hot business for a while but it’s couriers we’re after now. Space Truckers, like in that one Dennis Hopper movie that hardly anybody remembers. Space Run is about a delivery man who is constantly on the edge of annihilation and it’s brilliant.

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Lyrical Ballast: Impressions Of A Sunless Sea

By Adam Smith on July 1st, 2014.

We’re deep down now, deep down where dreams and figments tumble and churn together like silt, deep down in sleep, where pain and sorrow fall drop by drop into the Sunless Sea, and wisdom comes in whispers of text and through the rubbery fronds of some ancient lifeform. Now in Early Access, Sunless Sea is the first ‘proper’ game from Failbetter, the clever-clogs creators of Fallen London and the Story Nexus platform. I’ve been navigating its strange shores for the past few days.

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