Posts Tagged ‘Paradox’

Procedural Cyberpunk CorpWars: Hollowpoint

By Adam Smith on June 11th, 2015.

Hollowpoint is a cooperative shooter (supporting solo play or up to 4 teamchums) set in a future where everything has gone horribly wrong. First there’s life extension. That sounds like a good thing but it’s only for the rich. Throw AI and advanced robotics into the mix, and the poor end up with no jobs, no security and lives that are nastier, more brutish and shorter than ever (relatively speaking). Then there’s a big old war, a bunch of smaller civil wars, a whole load of destructive storms and – BAM! Megacorps rule the world. Tale as old as time.

You’ll build a team of operatives who work for those Megacorps, performing dynamic missions in procedurally generated levels. Control is third person on a 2d plane, shooting into the screen. There’s a story trailer below, with some in-game footage at the end.

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Hands On: Hearts Of Iron IV

By Adam Smith on June 8th, 2015.

The first time I moved to the unsteady beat of Hearts of Iron IV [official site], I played as Germany and managed to avoid the catastrophe of World War II by fudging my initial invasion plans so badly that the French were preparing to march on Berlin by 1938. France, like every other nation, had been controlled by the AI.

This time around, I played two games. Two games in a world populated by around twenty human players, controlling all of the major powers and some minor players. The first time around, I was outside the main theater, attempting to transform Brazil into a major trading power. When that world tore itself apart, I picked Japan in a draft and set about taming the Russian Bear with a little help from my friends.

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The Neighs Have It: Crusader Kings II – The Horse Lords

By Adam Smith on June 4th, 2015.

Paradox are preparing to inject some of that “Khan-do” spirit into Crusader Kings II [official site]. The eighth major expansion for the grand strategy masterpiece was announced a couple of days ago. I didn’t report on it at the time because Paradox had dropped me in the middle of an altogether different war and I was somewhat distracted (full coverage of that on Monday).

The Horse Lords deserves my attention though. If the new nomadic and horde mustering mechanics are effective, it could be as impressive an addition as The Old Gods. Trailer and full details below.

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Dig It: Cities Skylines Adds Tunnels

By Adam Smith on May 19th, 2015.

this is the steepest slope possible, not representative of ALL tunnels

Soon, you’ll be able to add tunnels to your urban creations in Cities: Skylines [official site]. Even before the game had been released, Colossal Order had told me that tunnels were the one big feature they had been hoping to include at launch. I think the eventual outcome was the best possible scenario – the game was lovely at launch, mods instantly started to make it even lovelier, and now the tunnels are arriving in the form of a free update later this week.

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Crusader Kings II And More In Humble Paradox Bundle

By Alice O'Connor on May 14th, 2015.

Fine PC publisher Paradox have joined up with those Humble Bundleers to offer a pay-what-you-want bundle of- hey, haven’t we done this before? So we have! I think this latest Humble Paradox Bundle is better than the first, though.

As ever, you get a selection of games from a list including Crusader Kings II, Magicka, Knights of Pen & Paper, and Europa Universalis IV depending on how much you cough up.

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Wot I Think: Magicka – Wizard Wars

By Adam Smith on May 11th, 2015.

After a year of Early Access, Magicka: Wizard Wars [official site] has finally graduated from Hogwarts. We’ve already shared our thoughts on various versions of the game but there’s still plenty to say about this maybe-a-MOBA and its complex combo-based elemental magic system. Here’s wot I think.

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Breaking History: A Crusader Kings II Journal – Part One

By Adam Smith on April 9th, 2015.

Let’s Play Crusader Kings II [official site]. Or rather, let’s watch Crusader Kings II play itself.

Partly inspired by the ongoing Civ V AI Battle Royale and partly by my own longstanding interest in the interplay of game mechanics without player intervention, I’ve decided to run a Crusader Kings II campaign, beginning at the earliest possible start date. I’ll be running the game in observer mode – that is to say, there will be no human player – and I’ve drawn up a set of rules to govern which parts of the world I’ll be observing most closely. Empires will rise, Kingdoms will fall. The mighty will end up rotting beneath carparks in Leicester.

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Collaborative Storytelling In Pillars Of Eternity

By Adam Smith on April 7th, 2015.

I take roleplaying seriously. That’s not to say I have a cupboard full of lucky dice or a handcrafted elven tunic – what I mean to say is that when I play an RPG, I try to make all of my decisions based on my character rather than the systems. I’ll pass up a huge pile of loot if I don’t think that taking it would be in-character. Roleplaying is a performance of sorts and Pillars of Eternity [official site] encourages my particular approach to the genre by combining a huge, tightly scripted plot with systems that go some way toward mimicking the best qualities of a human Dungeon Master.

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Mega-City One: Skylines Breaks Paradox Sale Records

By Adam Smith on March 13th, 2015.

Cities: Skylines [official site] has sold 250,000 copies in the 24 hours since launch, including preorders as day one sales. That’s more than any other Paradox game in the same period – Europa Universalis IV surpassed 300,000 sales around six months after release – and around a quarter of SimCity 2013’s first fortnight of sales.

Paradox are understandably pleased by the reception but they’re already looking to the future of the game. When I played it before release, Colossal Order CEO Mariina Hallikainen told me that the team already had free content lined up – features that weren’t quite ready for release, including tunnels. Support should continue for years though, as with Paradox’s grand strategy mainstays, and will come in the form of paid expansions and free patch updates.

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Wot I Think: Cities: Skylines

By Alec Meer on March 10th, 2015.

Cities: Skylines [official site] feels like the response to a question. That question is “what, exactly, do people want?” By contrast, 2013’s SimCity felt like the response to an order: “make them do this.” I don’t wish to get caught up in criticising the controversial EA city-builder, especially in light of the all-but-closure of its longstanding developer Maxis this week, but the ethos of these two games is so very different, even though they’re both in theory offering the same scenario: design a city from the ground up, keep it running, make it richer, make it grander.
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Subverting The Nazis: Alternative Hearts Of Iron Playstyles

By Adam Smith on February 28th, 2015.

Hearts of Iron [official site] is the one Paradox grand strategy series that I’ve been unable to befriend. Partly that’s because it’s a more guided experience, a game about a specific war rather than a historical sandbox and it’s partly because of the micromanagement involved in production and resource chains. Hearts of Iron IV might change that, with its cleverly streamlined factory operations and improved minor nations. More on that later this week.

First of all, I wanted to discuss the difficulty of playing the bad guys.

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Making Things To Build – Cities: Skylines Mod Trailer

By Alice O'Connor on February 26th, 2015.

I suppose we do post about Cities: Skylines [official site] a fair bit, but that’s partly because it’s a big chunk of (current) future hopes for a whole genre. Me, I’m well catered-for as I mostly play games in thriving genres like ‘shooting men’s faces’ and ‘dreamy wandering around surreal landscapes’. But with Cities XXL a wash, a minor update spun off into a so-called sequel, what else is coming soon for people who dream of building grand cities? So here, have a trailer going over Skylines’ mod support, which’ll let you make things to build.

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Hands On: Hearts Of Iron IV

By Adam Smith on February 24th, 2015.

Hearts of Iron [official site] is my Moby Dick. I’ve spent an inordinate portion of my adult life playing grand strategy games, particularly those of the Paradox variety. I’m slightly unusual in that Europa Universalis wasn’t my gateway game – I entered the fold by means of the first Crusader Kings, which swiftly became one of my favourite games, despite its problems. From there I moved to Europa Universalis II and struggled to infiltrate the colonial powers of Victoria. It wasn’t until the sequel that I learned to enjoy the nineteenth century.

Hearts of Iron IV might finally bring me into the heart of the twentieth century.

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