Posts Tagged ‘Lighthouse Customer’

The Lighthouse Customer: Recruits

By Christopher Livingston on September 8th, 2014.

I love the smell of tiny napalm in the morning.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, a tiny war with big stories in top-down action squad-shooter Recruits.

When games don’t have their own stories (and sometimes even when they do) I like to invent my own. Recruits, a game featuring tiny soldiers, is perfect for that, because while it gives each soldier a random, meaningless name, it also lets you create your own nicknames. This simple little feature makes all the difference. I mean, if Carl Arnold dies from enemy AK fire and Earl Lawson shreds himself with his own grenade, you don’t have much reason to care. But when Carl “Two Days left” Arnold and Earl “Girl Back Home” Lawson die, well, it’s tragic… though you totally saw that shit comin’.
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The Lighthouse Customer: World Of Diving

By Christopher Livingston on September 1st, 2014.

One word. One syllable. Sounds like: DARRRRRRRRK!

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, sharks, shoals, and silence with World of Diving.

When you start playing World of Diving you’re invited to vote on the next feature you’d like the developers to add. Most players have voted for a metal detector for treasure hunting. The second most-popular choice is an advanced camera. Least popular: an in-game chat feature. Frankly, I’d be happy if chat never gets added. While it can be great to talk to other players, I think there’s something to be said for a game that allows just a few friendly gestures and plenty of blessed silence.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Dex

By Christopher Livingston on August 25th, 2014.

I will punch out all of your elbow-blood! All of it!

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week: thugs, drugs, and alpha-induced amnesia in side-scrolling cyberpunk RPG Dex.

Behind one door, someone sells me noodles. Behind another, someone tries to punch me to death. I buy pornographic magazines and toilet paper, then walk down the street and pay for a stranger’s organ transplant. I upload a computer virus into a vending machine that sells condoms, then buy myself a set of cybernetic legs and visit a prostitute. Who am I? Where am I? Why am I doing these things? I’m Dex, I’m in a cyberpunk world, and I have absolutely no idea.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Frozen State

By Christopher Livingston on August 18th, 2014.

We're gonna need a bigger everything.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, fighting the cold and popping pills in Frozen State.

There are a lot of ways to die in Frozen State, a top-down survival action RPG that takes place in a snowy abandoned city in Siberia. You can die from hunger or thirst, you can die from the cold, and you can get monstered to death by monsters. You also need to sleep from time to time, and while doing so you can die in all the ways I just listed. What follows is a chronicle of my first nine lives in Frozen State, in which I find those ways to die, and others, and a couple more.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Rodina

By Christopher Livingston on August 11th, 2014.

Space: not quite as empty as we've been led to believe.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, seamless solar system exploration in Rodina.

What’s space travel like? Enchanting and serene? Gazing at distant galaxies, skimming past slowly-spinning asteroids, watching beautiful and mysterious alien planets grow ever-larger as you draw closer? Or is space travel scary as hell, requiring you to fight your way through turbulent atmospheres as your ship burns inside and out while swarms of hostile alien ships fill your screen with homing missiles?

How about both? Rodina’s got you covered.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Son of Nor

By Christopher Livingston on August 4th, 2014.

I'm like Magneto, but with sand. There's also a giant butt.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, terraforming sand and terrorizing villagers with Son of Nor.

I lift my hands and the sand at my feet forms into a towering pillar. I point my palms down and the sand retreats, creating a deep sinkhole. I am a Son of Nor, a mystic imbued with telekinetic powers and charged with the protection of my village. And I’ll totally get around to protecting my village at some point. For reals, you guys, I will. Right now, though, I’m trying to raise a sand pillar high enough to cover the buttcrack of the giant nude statue that looms over the town. Why? I have my reasons, and those reasons are: I have sand powers and there’s a giant elevated stone butt.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Factorio

By Christopher Livingston on July 28th, 2014.

The factory is a mess, but at least no one works here.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, building efficient machines to make other efficient machines in strategy game Factorio.

I’ve got coal-powered drills digging up resources, mechanical arms collecting the raw materials, and conveyor belts transporting it across the landscape where more arms collect it and deposit it into fabrication machines, after which the resulting product is plucked out by still more arms, dropped on more belts, moved on to more factories. Clouds of pollution fill the air, production lines twist and turn haphazardly, electrical poles and storage units appear to have been placed by a confused and drunken city planner. It’s a mess. A big mess. But it’s a beautiful mess, because it all works.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Robocraft

By Christopher Livingston on July 21st, 2014.

War never changes. It just rearranges.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, building, driving, and flying robotic cube-tanks in the free-to-play Robocraft.

My robotank, Killdeathinator — named for all the killing and deathinating it’s been dishing out — has just entered its 5th iteration. Killdeathinator Mk 1 had four wheels, a couple guns, and was made of weak plastic cubes. Mk 2 added more wheels — ones I can steer, which I’ve found to be fairly important — and a radar dish to track enemies. Now, lined with gleaming copper armor and bristling with cannons, its become a fairly durable ground assault vehicle. Time to kick it up a notch. Killdeathinator wants to fly.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Unturned

By Christopher Livingston on July 14th, 2014.

Can you smell what the chefs are cooking?

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, surviving a few free-to-play DayZ days and Minecraft nights in Unturned.

Don’t let their looks fool you. Yes, the boxy zombies of Unturned are utterly adorable. On farms, they wear straw hats and overalls. In towns, they dress like chefs, construction workers, businessmen, and police officers. Creeping around a golf course in the middle of the night, I even spot one wearing a sweater vest and slacks. Adorable? Abso-cutely! Dangerous? Abso-deadly!
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The Lighthouse Customer: Bot Colony

By Christopher Livingston on July 7th, 2014.

Soldier robots? Oh, I'm sure that's a good idea.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, speaking with robots, and the resulting loss of his sanity, in Bot Colony.

Science-fiction writers love driving robots crazy, from Speedy in Asimov’s “Runaround” to Ash attempting a magazine-murder in Alien. Is it time for a robot to drive a human crazy instead? Considering that talking to a robot in Bot Colony for a couple hours reduced me to wailing “BLOOP! BLOOP! BLOOP!” into my headset, it just might be. There’s video evidence below: I’ll let you be the judge. Bloop.

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The Lighthouse Customer: Starforge (Survival Mode)

By Christopher Livingston on June 30th, 2014.

Does this zit on my back look infected? It's super itchy.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, pantsless survival and gimp mask crafting in Starforge.

The Earth’s sun is being devoured by a black hole, and humankind, desperate to survive, has sent scouts to the planet Atlas to prepare the mysterious new world for colonization. I am one of those scouts, the Earth’s last and best hope, which is a bit of a shame because I’ve been here for several days and I’m still wearing just the underpants I arrived in and I’ve been living in a hole in the ground. On the plus side… well… I dug the hole myself?

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The Lighthouse Customer – Lichdom: Battlemage

By Christopher Livingston on June 23rd, 2014.

I came here to cast spells and chew gum and I have plenty of both.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, first-person spellcasting and spellcrafting with Lichdom: Battlemage.

As a battlemage, I am imbued with arcane might: deadly firestorms, freezing ice blasts, and crackling electrical bolts. I hold my magic-infused hands up in front of me in an awkward, unnatural fashion at all times, as if I’m a giant praying mantis or a Microsoft marketing executive presenting at E3. And, I wrestle with the same ancient dilemma all great sorcerers have faced, from Merlin to Dumbledore: do I want to use a Charging Smart Trap AOE Pattern with +17% chance of critical damage or stick with the Charging Targeted Pattern of Persistence with +14% status effect duration? As Gandalf said: “YOU SHALL NOT PASS NOW THAT I’VE GOT +28% BURN DAMAGE ON KILL FOR 9 SECONDS!”

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The Lighthouse Customer: GearCity

By Christopher Livingston on June 16th, 2014.

I call it the Volkswagen Coleoptera. Wait, that's not right.

Each Monday, Chris Livingston visits an early access game and reports back with stories about whatever he finds inside. This week, driving a car company into the ground with GearCity.

“Have you ever dreamed of running your own car company?” asks the website of GearCity, a simulation game that lets you run your own car company. My answer: no, I’ve never dreamed of running my own car company, at least until GearCity’s website asked if I’ve ever dreamed of running my own car company. At which point I did. So, I decided to play GearCity to fulfil my minute-old dream. Of running my own car company.

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