What Are We All Playing This Weekend?

I never intended for that picture to become the official header for What Are You/We All Playing This Weekend, you know. I found myself in charge of this section one week and thought I’d find a nice picture of a pond – which was where I intended to mostly spend my weekend. Finding nothing in antique illustration archives (we have our whole antiquated Britishness schtick, yeah?), I turned to what else I’d be doing: appearing in visions, indulging my nymph side, and firing cannons at ghastly moustaches.

Anyway, what are you playing this weekend? Here’s what we’re into:

Adam: What a week. I’ve spent the last couple of days wanting to load up one or all of the following: Downwell, Mushroom 11 and Broforce. I’ve been playing the latter since the first build was available way back when and it’s a brilliant platform-shooter that is far more intelligent than the meme-happy theme might suggest. Downwell is a superb shooter about gunshoes that reminds me of a slighter, rejigged Binding of Isaac. And Mushroom 11 is novel and gorgeous, and even though it’s a puzzle game, early investigation suggests I’m not too much of an idiot to play it. I’m going to gorge on all three. [“oh man, that’s another thing for me to play this weekend” Adam added when I mentioned Brigador -ed.]
Alec: [Presumably to teach me a lesson about timeliness and planning ahead, Alec has gone on holiday and left no word of what he might be playing this weekend. This is all to get back at me for my tardiness with Have You Played? columns, I’m sure, but I’m all up-to-date now so I’m sure we’ll hear from him next week. -ed.]
Alice: As I already given away elsewhere, I shall be playing Brigador. Stomping and hovering around futurecities as stealthily or noisily as I please sounds grand, thank you very much. I became mired in the boring bits of The Phantom Pain but would like to push through and finish up; I’m not far from the end, but am 70-ish% completed due to focusing on unrewarding side bits. Yeah, that was a mistake. Also, I’ve had some damn fool notion of finishing Duke Nukem Forever – don’t ask.
Graham: I’m hoping to break back in to prison for another go of Prison Architect’s escape mode. My first attempts were marked by bugs, but were nonetheless enjoyable. In fact, they were arguably more fun for the weirdness that happened along the way. I’m now curious whether the game plays differently if I’m trying to escape from a completely different prison.
John: [What’s John playing this weekend? You tell me, as he won’t – answers in the comments below, please. Reader ‘bonuswavepilot’ was right on the money with this last week:

“I think he has transcended our ordinary causality, and is now staring – just a bit worried – at the fractally branching multiverse, trying to remember which branch he was supposed to be in (or at least one that seems close enough).”]

Philippa: This weekend is more esports. I’m at Wembley watching the League of Legends quarter-finals for another couple of days. In the spaces around that it will likely a console kind of a weekend as Iron Banner (a PvP event) is running in Destiny. I might also see if I can make some more progress on the Talos Principle expansion.

But you, dearest reader, what are you playing?

138 Comments

  1. klops says:

    Age of Decadence with a thief
    + perhaps some Prison Architect in escape mode.

  2. John O says:

    I tried Undertale but it is SO CUTE! I hated it!

    • Barberetti says:

      I tried the demo, but on hitting the escape key (to turn off the music) I found there were no options, which as we all know is against the law. So yeah. In to the recycle bin it went.

      • Kitsunin says:

        Fair enough, it doesn’t really work without its music anyhow.

        • Kaeoschassis says:

          Just to be clear here (I haven’t bought it yet and I’m trying to minimize spoilers) did Toby do the music himself?

          Because if so I’m pretty sure turning it off would constitute an arrestable offense anyway.

          • Kitsunin says:

            Yes, and yes. I certainly don’t understand the sentiment, my god does the music set the scene well when it needs to.

  3. Premium User Badge

    Andy_Panthro says:

    Same as I’ve been playing for a while: Metal Gear Solid.

    But I do really want to play Age of Decadence (not to mention the other games I have waiting like Shadowrun: Hong Kong and stuff).

    • welverin says:

      Same here, though I’ll supplement with some TF2 and Evolve.

      I made some actual progress while I was off from work, even still I’m not I’ll be able to finish before Fallout 4 comes out.

      • Premium User Badge

        Andy_Panthro says:

        I’m just hoping I finish it before christmas… but in the case of Fallout 4 it’s probably best to wait for that until it’s had a patch or two anyway (and the mods start rolling in).

  4. Fuzzyaardvark says:

    I agree that Downwell is superb. I can’t stop playing it, even if the bats are driving me crazy. An absolute steal at £1.99.

    • Eight Rooks says:

      Playing it on iOS, but yes, it’s got its hooks (cleats?) in me too. My reflexes aren’t really up to it, the difficulty spike from the first to the second zone is a bit much and I doubt I’ll ever beat the game if it keeps on getting tougher at this rate, but I’m slowly making progress (reaching 2-2 consistently) and greatly enjoying it nonetheless. It’s a hell of an achievement for a first game, in Gamemaker, no less.

  5. DarkLiberator says:

    Life is Strange. Finally bought them all, and just did all 4 episodes. Besides the sometimes cringeworthy teenager dialogue and weird lip syncing, enjoying it quite a lot. Loving the music in it. Also the story has escalated quite a bit.

    Looking forward to episode 5.

    • brucethemoose says:

      I just got Life is Strange as well. Great game… In fact, I’m looking for similar games right now.

      I also got sucked back into Planetside 2. No other game scratches my FPS itch quite like PS2 does.

      • heretic says:

        Yes guys me too!!! After the humble bundle I finally played gone home, although flawed I really enjoyed the story telling and music and I wanted more, picked up Life Is Strange from Green Man Gaming and didn’t regret it at all, what a game :)

        Almost finished episode 4, omg I teared up a little.

        Btw great music from Jose Gonzales (Crosses), must be the only game that allows you to turn on music on zone out on your bed or sofa for a bit.

  6. Jonfon says:

    Mushroom 11. Brilliant game, the soundtrack is by FSOL and the eerie setting suits it down to the ground. My only quibble is that he’s obviously a Slime Mold, not a mushroom :-)

    And continuing Galactic Civ 3 with a new game. Last two I won with a Diplomatic & a Cultural victory so this time I’ve upped the difficulty and going for the pew-pew-pew victory.

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      Waltorious says:

      I heard The Future Sound of London in the trailer, but didn’t realize the whole soundtrack is their music. Now I’m even more interested. The trailer track was already released before the game came out, so I assume the developers just licensed existing tracks, rather than commissioning new ones. Do you know?

      • Jonfon says:

        I think it’s licensed, in that I seemed to recognise songs. But that’s just based off my 20 year old memories so don’t take it as gospel.

        • Premium User Badge

          Waltorious says:

          Cool. The track from the trailer was on one of their “From the Archives” releases which are a little more recent, so maybe there will even be some tracks I haven’t heard before!

  7. Andrew says:

    Human Resource Machine. My brain hurts.

    • Xocrates says:

      Got this one too. Finished every level except for the last optional one (which would be tricky even with a decent programming language). Still undecided on what I think of it.

      • Andrew says:

        Do you know programming? Like sorting methods and stuff? My biggest concern is that game doesn’t teach everything you need to know. Or don’t do that good enough.

        • Xocrates says:

          I do. Professional programmer, with a semester on Assembly language in college (which the game’s language resembles), so the game was reasonably accessible to me. I struggled more with how hard it is to read the code than coming up with solutions.

          And yeah, the game does not even try to teach you algorithms, up to the point of suggesting you google what the puzzle is about before trying to solve it.

          Another problem, and its one it seems pretty common in these “programming” games, is that the difficulty curve is more exponential than linear. So you go from Inbox->Outbox into trying to sort strings in 2 or 3 hours.

          • Andrew says:

            Yea. I’m at 35 “year”, I already brute forced couple of levels, ‘cause my knowledge is limited (I’m OK at logic, math, 10 PRINT “Hello World!” 20 GOTO 10, logic gates, I understand Numberphile/Computerphile, but no way I know any programming language). Can I find solution to the next one? Maybe, but very hacky one at best.

            But if you a programmer, is it even challenging? Is it even interesting? Basically, who is audience for this game? Someone who learns programming now? I don’t know.

          • Xocrates says:

            For someone who knows programming it’s challenging/interesting mostly due to how low level and limited the language actually is. But long term it’s mostly and optimization problem.

            Honestly, I think the game can work well as a learning tool… so long as it’s not the only one. The game does not teach you enough for you to be able to solve everything, but if you’re learning/trying to learn I think it can be fun.

            Reading the code is still way harder than it should be though.

          • Andrew says:

            It good for testing stuff you already know, yes.

            Agree, you have majority of screen occupied by very unimportant room and just small column for actual important stuff. Dozen of commands and hello scrolling! And jump arrows of the same color don’t help. Weird.

  8. Gilead says:

    I’ll be playing the Witcher 3. I initially bounced off it when I played it on release because I was intimidated by the amount of stuff to do. But I gave it another go earlier this week and I’m now eight hours in, and I’m enjoying it.

    I think there just wasn’t quite enough direction at the start for me so I initially felt a bit overwhelmed, but now I’m past that everything’s fine. And the combat works better than the Witcher 2, thank God.

  9. lowprices says:

    I’ve been compelled to head back to Broforce. It’s every bit as brilliant as it was back in early access. I also plan to try and complete Volume, which hasn’t grabbed me quite the way I assumed it would, especially compared to fellow stealthytime game The Swindle. During the bits of the weekend when I’m out and about? Downwell, Alphabear and 80Days on the iDevice.

  10. Premium User Badge

    Oakreef says:

    Going back to Metal Gear Solid 5 after I realised it was a lot more fun to just use Cheat Engine to buy all the upgrades so I could actually use good equipment instead of grinding bullshit. The only reason I wasn’t doing this previously is I didn’t want to get banned because my brother really wants to attack my FOB. But apparently they don’t have anything in there to detect resources cheating so grand.

  11. LionsPhil says:

    Finding out just how much Payday 2 is or isn’t ruined forever (and if I still want the DLC, given until that first day I was ready to throw more money at Overkill, and am now feeling distinctly soured on the notion).

    Also gonna give the free Grey Goo weekend a spin and see if it has any of the old Westwood magic in it.

    Also also Guild War 2, because engineer cats own all that they can see, and shall reclaim it from the other races who dare deny them this.

    • Awesomeclaw says:

      I’ve been giving Grey Goo a bit of a go. I’m not completely sold on it yet. Some of the interface stuff kind of irritates me (especially the lack of good non-edge mouse scrolling).

      I’ll roll a new char on GW2 every so often, play as far as Trehearne appearing, then remember how much I hate him and quit the game. I’ve been spending quite a bit of time with SWTOR again recently which I like a lot, especially with the big class quest XP boost that’s on at the moment.

      Also the Payday thing is a total bummer. I never really played it that much but really enjoyed it. Even without the new microtransaction stuff, it sounds like they’ve completely broken the game balance yet again.

      • anHorse says:

        Is running still tied to paying a sub in TOR?

        • malkav11 says:

          No, they did away with most of the worst F2P ideas they had a long time ago. Although they do have a whole shedload of pricey cosmetic item gambling boxes, which I find a rather questionable way to bring in revenue, personally. But since I had a big pile of the F2P curency and there’s not a lot else to spend it on once you’ve got a few key unlocks, I did partake and now I have a mount that’s a huge hoverskiff piloted by a droid in which I recline, eating grapes from a tray (with a grape-eating animation), and on which I can activate a (very low frame) holographic Twilek dancer with accompanying cantina music. So that’s ridiculously ostentatious.

          • anHorse says:

            Cool, I’ll give it another look at some point.

            The movement speed was killing me early on

          • Awesomeclaw says:

            Note that there’s still a lot of stuff tied to subscription. Sprinting unlocks for free players at level 10. IMO it’s probably worth some of the premium currency (I think the lowest tier is £3) as it unlocks sprint completely and removes a bunch of other restrictions.

          • LionsPhil says:

            That is the most amazing cosmetic I have ever heard of in a F2P game and now I must find footage of it.

          • YogSo says:

            @LionsPhil: I’ve never played SWTOR, but going by malkav11’s description, I think it’s the Hutt Cantina Skiff.

          • LionsPhil says:

            All you need now is an emote to let out a hedonistic chortle.

          • malkav11 says:

            Yup, it’s the Cantina Skiff.

          • Jekadu says:

            I spent about 5000 Cartel wossnames I wasn’t using on a bunch of crates that I traded for a Mask of Darth Nihilus. Turns out it’s not as sexy as I though. Bummer.

            After that I sort of realized there wasn’t a good reason to hang on to my monthly allotment, so I’ve started to spend it on microtransactions. I also bought a mace-like thing for my Sith Marauder that I’m using as an off-hand.

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      Thulsa Hex says:

      Grey Goo seems intriguing, but having not tried it yet I have to ask: is the tone as silly as the name? The screenshots and marketing assets look confusingly serious in comparison to the title. Also, would say it’s closer to the Westwood or the Blizzard school of classic RTS?

      • Awesomeclaw says:

        Yeah the name doesn’t really suit it. I guess the issue is that while the concept of ‘grey goo’ (all-consuming nanomachines) is kind of terrifying, the name is kind of ridiculous.

        • Premium User Badge

          Thulsa Hex says:

          Yeah, that’s odd. I wonder if it’s hurt sales. I’m pretty sure I’d have entirely passed over it on Steam if I just saw the name in a list.

      • LionsPhil says:

        I’ve not got to it yet either, but given its heritidge, I’d hope the former.

        • Premium User Badge

          Thulsa Hex says:

          Me too. I was born and raised on C&C.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Ditto, but so far it has a smaller build queue cap than Tib Sun (Four units? Why?! Why even cap it at all?), and I’m being swarmed by the enemy in the tutorial mission, so, uh…

          • Awesomeclaw says:

            The build queue is 4 units per factory for the small factories. You can queue up more units by building more factories (although obviously they’ll appear at whatever factory actually constructed the units).

          • LionsPhil says:

            Yeah, I also found I could set them to repeat-build, which sorta makes it more like SupComm.

          • LionsPhil says:

            …except if you do that, you hit a pop cap pretty soon.

            Then you find you can’t build the superunit you need to for a mission objective a few missions in, and fail because you run out of time even though you were ready to build it quarter of an hour ago if you could just lose a few more of these big bipedal guys.

            There’s little quality of life stuff, too, that’s a regression on earlier Westwood work. A big one is repair pads being a chaotic mess, where even back in Red Alert 1, in the ’90s, you could select a bunch of units and they’d neatly queue up to take turns until fully repaired.

            This doesn’t feel like an RTS made by veterans of the genre.

          • Awesomeclaw says:

            Yeah, I’m not sure it really generally feel that good to play. Unit repairs were such a mess that I kind of just gave up. The one thing it has done is remind me that I kind of enjoy playing RTSs, so I might start firing up Starcraft 2 a bit more often…

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        Oakreef says:

        The name is meant to be serious. It’s a reference to a theoretical end of the word scenario where someone creates a machine or thing that’s so good as self replicating that everything in the entire world is converted to it, and thus the entire world just becomes “grey goo”.

  12. prof_yaffle says:

    I’ve just started a new play through of Sir, You Are Being Hunted. So far I’ve cleared two of the islands, so I think I might complete it this time.
    When I want a break from being shot at I’ll be playing The Talos Principle’s Road to Gehenna DLC.

  13. eocar89 says:

    I will probably play Resident Evil Chronicles and DMC Devil May Cry as I bought the new humble bundle 2 days ago

  14. Premium User Badge

    pertusaria says:

    I’ll be avoiding eye contact with 80 Days and Grow Home, because I’m much better at guilt-tripping than I am at playing games.

  15. anHorse says:

    Either Age of Decadence or Wasteland 2 now that the less shit edition is out

    Both games commit the cardinal sin of greeting you with a massive stats based character creation screen without giving you enough information about how each stat will actually impact the game

    So yeah probably a weekend in character creation

    • Premium User Badge

      Andy_Panthro says:

      I do love a good and detailed character creation, but I do agree that sometimes it can be hard to know just what sorts of characters are “viable” builds.

      I’ve spent far more time in Pillars of Eternity making characters than I have actually playing the game (trying to find what sort of class to play, I usually go magic user but I don’t really like the magic in PoE).

      By the sounds of things Age of Decadence requires you to specialise, and being a jack-of-all-trades makes things much harder. No idea with Wasteland 2, I kickstarted it but have yet to play it (waiting for this updated version, but even then I have such a backlog I’m not sure when I’ll play it).

      • Premium User Badge

        zapatapon says:

        No idea with Wasteland 2, I kickstarted it but have yet to play it

        I see I am not the only one

        • mouton says:

          We are legion.

          At least I recently got into Shadowrun games and I am very happy I did.

          If anyone is interested, the first one, while not exactly bad, is perfectly skippable – Dragonfall DC and Hong Kong are excellent old-school isometric tactical rpgs, with truckloads of really good text. Nom nom.

          • Premium User Badge

            Andy_Panthro says:

            I kickstarted a couple of dozen games, many of which are now released, most of which I have yet to play (or in the case of Pillars of Eternity, have only played the first couple of hours with several different characters as I try and find a class I like).

            So Wasteland 2 is not alone, I also have Divinity Original Sin and Dead State (amongst others) to play.

            But I did manage to get around to playing both Shadowrun Returns and Shadowrun Dragonfall, which were brilliant. Yes, SR:R is more limited, but it’s still good and sometimes a smaller and more focused/linear story is what you want. I then went and bought SR: Hong Kong, but I’ve only just done the very first bit (seems good so far).

    • RegisteredUser says:

      W2 EE is very explicit about what does what for what, but you should know:
      0. First, pick up the shovel right at the start of the game, you can dig up spots on the ground with stuff everywhere.

      1. At Char creation, CHOOSE TWO WEAPON SKILLS. You get a starting weapon for the two weapon skills you unlock, i.e. a heavy for heavy, a Rifle for Assault, and a Bat for blunt, etc.

      2. You can leave skill points left over. This is a smart idea, since you will often come across stuff you wish you could open or choose in dialogues NOW.
      Lockpicking and safecracking are useful for loot.

      3. Specialize. Or cheat, the savegame is in plain text and you can just give yourself more skill / attribute / perk points to spend if you really want something opened.

      4. Do not sell stuff except junk immediately. You will get extra cash for gun parts or poop for example (at ranger citadel). Various items may mean something to people later.

    • john_silence says:

      Same selection here. Age of Decadence rather – for once I was excited enough to buy something at full price upon release, so I’d bloody well better set my mind to that.
      In truth the fiancée will drag me to the gym in the morning after which I’ll be a lump of bruised muscle, take a nap and there you go the week-end is over.

      John is LARPing as himself, role-playing a sort of best-of reel in which he wanders around the town of Camembert, eating pies with the biggest spoon known to man and screaming “Are you a pathological liar” at bemused French farmers. At night he removes his costume and looks up to the Moon and tears up a little bit, so to cool down he fires up a management game called Titter, in which the aim is to piss off as many randos as possible without trolling them too obviously.

  16. Barberetti says:

    This weekend I’ll be taking (another) break from troubleshooting PC problems, and playing some 7 Days to Die in that glorious environment known as Windows XP Pro 64.

  17. celticdr says:

    Been playing Witcher 3 this entire week, 82hrs and I still haven’t finished (wherever did I find 82hrs to spend on one game!?) – I want to get this and the expansion finished before my spare time is completely surrendered to the glorious Fallout 4.

    Witcher 3 is simply the most beautiful game I’ve played so far, I can’t wait to see Cyberpunk 2077!

    • Premium User Badge

      Thulsa Hex says:

      Took me almost double that to finish the game (all side-quests and a fair chunk of the “?” locations — though I skipped a chunk of the ones out to sea at Skellige once it became clear they were all boring loot boxes guarded by the game’s most annoying enemies). Not only was I amazed with the amount of time I’d put in, I was consistently surprised that the game stayed fun and interesting for me, throughout. Definitely the longest campaign of my gaming life.

  18. Premium User Badge

    Lars Westergren says:

    Finished Bioshock 2. Started both Age of Decadence and SOMA.

    A few Dota matches.

    Fallout: Shelter. I take back what I said about it being a “mandatory p2w” title. I didn’t realize how much supplies were lost to raider attacks. Once I put my two highest levelled and best equipped dwellers at the door and upgrade it, things went a lot better.

    • Scrape Wander says:

      Just wait til the Deathclaws show up.

      I’m the entirely WRONG person to play this game, and I don’t really play anything like it, but I do play it (hopefully that sentence makes sense).

      My vault is big enough that I just check on it a few times a day, and continue to complete objectives. 90 souls so far.

      I don’t think the game is remotely P2W, it’s more like Pay 2 Spend Slightly Less Time Doing The Things. Also, that being said, not sure if there is any kid of win condition, either.

      For now, I’m happy just tunneling further down.

      • malkav11 says:

        There isn’t. Chris Remo has had a number of hilarious stories on Idle Thumbs about the goals he sets for himself in lieu of there being an actual win condition.

  19. Renegade says:

    Lots of Armoured warfare platooning with friends. Maybe some Witcher 3 as well if I find the chance.

  20. melnificent says:

    This weekend is steam controller time. So playing with layouts and finally playing half life from my backlog.

    • Premium User Badge

      Dorga says:

      “Half life from my back log”
      Wot?!

      • melnificent says:

        It just got pushed into the backlog and slowly subsumed by 100s of other games that I played or added to the backlog.

        The steam controller is my excuse/reason for finally playing these older games including deus ex OG and the rest of the half-life series.

    • Premium User Badge

      Thulsa Hex says:

      Interesting! How’s it holding-up, as a newcomer?

      • melnificent says:

        It’s holding up surprisingly well. Story is engaging and pretty fun. Textures, geometry and such are rough, but I can look past that easily enough.

        I’m not that far into it yet.

        • Premium User Badge

          Thulsa Hex says:

          That’s great. My wife is going to start it soon since she’s not played any FPS games outside of Goldeneye. The train ride and wandering the facility (pre-resonance cascade) was mind-blowing in 1998. I’m curious about the human grunt AI, too — they seemed SO smart back then.

    • roothorick says:

      Same here. I’ve probably touched on more than a dozen games at this point, trying it on everything I can, and I have easily a dozen more in me yet.

      What I find most amazing is I have yet to find a game that *doesn’t* work well with the controller. A few needed tweaked mappings, but nothing has been even so much as awkward to play. Valve has created something truly special here.

      • melnificent says:

        If you have it take a look at the community bindings for transformers devastation, Baryn has created something that works well on the dual trackpads.

        How are you finding the right pad vertical sensitivity? I’ve had to dial mine down a bit to stop frequent diagonals.

  21. Premium User Badge

    Dorga says:

    John is clearly doing a weekend long pub crawl from the white forest to nova prospekt with Gordon Freeman to cheer him up from his early retirement.

    • MiniMatt says:

      That’s odd – could have sworn I saw him playing a one-man Shelter LARP in Tescos, snuffling through the fruit section whilst nervously eyeing some tweed clad farmer types.

  22. Paul says:

    Witcher 3 Hearts of Stone, obviously. Just doing the wedding and it is pretty much the best thing ever.

  23. Drumclem says:

    I’m a bit lost as to what to play at the moment. Just (finally!) finished Shadow of Mordor, which was tremendous fun (although the story missions were a bit shit).

    But now, enough of that silly action: I yearn for something more strategic, more managy, something with NUMBERS and TABLES and STUFF TO BALANCE (and I want to take my time to do it).

    What should I play in your opinion? I’ve been eyeing Banished for a while because it seems to be quite the challenge. I’ve thought about Cities: Skylines but from what I’ve played it’s too… easy, I suppose? Any other strategy/sim game worth a look these days? I could use your help, O collective RPS wisdom.

    And if there is no solution, I suppose I’ll just end up playing 80 Days, as I’ve been doing for the past… wow, that much!

    • RegisteredUser says:

      There’s Holy Potatoes, A Weapon Shop(very manual clicky though), Prison Architect(well worth checking out), Capitalism 2 or Capitalism Labs (the best business sim the PC has ever seen and sadly without peers), and the plethora of Game Dev games(which are fun for a single playthrough then meh and grindy).

      IMO, if you haven’t played Capitalism 2 / Labs yet, go there first.

      Oh and if you can find it for a 5er, Democracy 3 may also be an enjoyable afternoon(turn assassinations off).

      Otherwise, there’s all the classics (tycoon games, Theme Hospital and whatnot..best to get for cheap on GoG).

      • Drumclem says:

        Thanks, registereduser! I will probably dive into Prison Architect eventually. Either that or EUIV. Both games scare me, but I find the principle of each very enticing…

      • Awesomeclaw says:

        Wow, I /really/ liked Capitalism 2 and I didn’t realise that there was an improved version. It looks like Labs has still got a lot of the UI problems of 2 but some decent resolutions is already a good start.

  24. Boult Upright says:

    After surviving (i.e. not winning) This War of Mine during the week, testing Arkham Knight to see if it works (it does, sort of), and performing an execution on Prison Architect, I booted up Mad Max and watched the world open up. I found my dog, too. I think I will stick with this for a while.

  25. Sarfrin says:

    John is dividing his time between googling “cute baby Halloween costumes” and attempting to grow a long, white beard in time for Christmas.

  26. RegisteredUser says:

    After already putting in my 30 hours with Prison Architect, I am now enjoying the finally mainly bug-free, really pretty wastelandness that is Wasteland 2.
    Finally the Fallout 3 I was waiting for that never came.

    I can’t recommend W2 enough to people looking for a CRPG coupled with pretty solid turn based combat. The only thing I miss is the “Wait” in combat, but other than that its great. And deep. And huge. And pretty. Definitely worth checking out.

  27. SaintAn says:

    Vermintide pre-order beta until it launched on the 23. Only 3 maps out right now, but it’s super fun, and so so hard on just Normal with randoms.

    And Mordheim.

    • jonahcutter says:

      I played a bit of the Vermintide beta and thought it was really good. So much so, I’ve been struggling to resist buying, as I’m thinking I’ll enjoy it as much as I did L4D2, and it’ll suck up too much time.

      It’s a really satisfying co-op and dos melee experience.

      • jonahcutter says:

        dos = fps

        And I broke down and bought it. Fuck me. I’m weak.

        • SaintAn says:

          lol You like it so far? I’m hooked. I’ve got 13 hours of play time and had the first mission on farm for a while with all extra dice items until the game AI got mad and just started throwing lots of bosses at us during the big horde fight to wipe us out. So fun!

    • Bull0 says:

      Yeah, I am really impressed with Vermintide, nice big maps and very crunchy combat, the characters barking is all nice and contextual, it’s great.

    • suibhne says:

      Fourthing Vermintide. It’s not perfect, but it’s a great co-op game – really nails the L4D formula, and improves on it in many ways. The levels aren’t quite as compelling – art is great, but they just don’t feel “lived in” like Valve’s work did. They’re sometimes feel more like static arenas than a world in the process of apocalyptic change. But combat is much better than L4D2, which really hasn’t aged well in terms of raw gameplay (tho its pacing is still second to none).

  28. Premium User Badge

    Thulsa Hex says:

    I’ve been having a bit of a “let’s have a look at that auld backlog of yours” week. It started with Minerva’s Den for Bioshock 2, last weekend. Despite it crashing almost as frequently as Deadly Premonition, I had a decent enough time with it. It was a bit heavy-handed and a tad obvious, though. Best thing about it was definitely the generous “expansion pack” feel.

    Wrapped-up Homeworld (1) Remastered, next. It felt like a big deal, finally playing this, and I had a pretty good time with it, but I do feel it kind of fizzled-out towards the end — particularly the last two missions. They were sort of unremarkable and lacked drama. I wonder if it would be even better if I did a self-policed, perma-death play-through, to get the most out of that auld feeling of peril.

    Next was Amnesia: the Dark Descent. Basically played it in one session, with an intermission. I found recognising the influence it’s had on more contemporary games more interesting than the game itself (a symptom of being so late to the party), but still enjoyed my time in that castle. Genuinely scared me a handful of times — especially that freakin’ invisible water… thing — but I’d recently finished Alien: Isolation, which was infinitely more terrifying (and similarly meandering towards the end). It’s hard not to see how many queues Isolation has taken from Amnesia. Kudos.

    Now I’m about half-way through Tomb Raider (2013), and wow… It’s just so… unremarkable. It’s sort of fulfilling my need for something a bit brainless, but even that is being compromised by the game trying to pretend like its writing is decent. Story-wise, it’s like a crap modern action movie, with misguided attempts at shock-value thrown in seemingly at random (a whole room filled with dismembered, rotting corpses? TR1 did a way better job at spooking you with some well-placed statues). The gameplay is more than a bit “meh” as well. Real lowest common denominator shooty game, with only a cursory nod to the ingenious spatial puzzles of the Core/Eidos golden era. Fuck modern gaming, man (I’m only half joking).

    So, to answer your question… I might get that Witcher 3 expansion if a pay-cheque arrives today (mail on Saturdays is one of the perks of being a pretend American).

  29. Vandelay says:

    I’ve been playing the non-PC game Xenoblade Chronicles, which I discovered last week was released on the Wii U e-store a little while ago.

    Rather enjoying it, although it has its cringy moments in the plot. Combat has some nice depth, but I do wish you could easily switch between characters while fighting. Instead, you are left hoping that the AI would follow up your break ability with a topple.

    They have created a really fun world though and I’m always itching to see what it will throw up next. Plus, it just keeps adding little interesting mechanics as your powers and link with the Manando grows.

    It has definitely made the sequel being released in a couple months shoot up my wanted list.

    • Premium User Badge

      Thulsa Hex says:

      Wait, wait, wait! Xenoblade is on Wii U? I think I might have to get that, now. I’m rather surprised, since they just brought out the 3DS version. I guess they need more people invested before the sequel drops. Never played it myself since the Wii retail version has been going for like $100 on eBay. Thanks for the heads-up!

      • Premium User Badge

        Thulsa Hex says:

        It’s not on the North American eStore. Fuuuuuck saaaaake, Nintendo.

        • malkav11 says:

          The English version was exclusive to Europe for quite a while originally and only got brought to North America after concerted fan lobbying (and that only in a pretty small print run), so that might have something to do with it.

          • Premium User Badge

            Thulsa Hex says:

            Maybe! It certainly accounts for the expensive re-sale value of the Wii version. I also think NoA wanna shift more 3DS copies. Like everyone else growing up in Europe, I’m pretty used to being shafted with Nintendo releases, but thought I’d seen the last of that since moving here!

  30. revan says:

    Age of Decadence with a pinch of Tie Fighter to vent frustration when my thief suddenly and inadvertently becomes enemy number one for every faction in the game. :)

  31. Stepout says:

    XCOM Enemy Unknown. I’ve been so hyped for the sequel based off of all the stuff they’ve shown so far. Especially this interview:

  32. malkav11 says:

    Probably mostly Dragon Age Inquisition as I’ve gotten back into a groove on that. It continues to be crashy and appears to have some sort of memory leak, neither of which have ever been issues for me with any Obsidian game so I continue to question how the hell Obsidian are the ones with the reputation for bugs, but…still. It’s gorgeous, and I’m finally starting to hit a point where I have major areas more or less cleared out, like the Exalted Plains, Crestwood, and Emerald Graves. Except for the dragons, of course. Those are going to be a problem. Honestly, the dragons and the high population of giants in the northern bits of Emerald Graves are the only serious combat challenges I’ve encountered so far, and I’ve been on Hard the whole game.

    I picked up the PC version of 80 Days finally, so I’ll probably dip my toes into that a bit more now that I don’t have to deal with (boo, hiss) touchscreens anymore.

    And oh yeah, tonight I get to play the “first date with the most promising romantic prospect of my entire life” game.

    • Premium User Badge

      Lars Westergren says:

      Hope it goes well, Malkav!

      • malkav11 says:

        Assuming you meant the date, it went great. I have a previously scheduled trip that means we won’t be able to do date #2 for a bit, but it’s going to happen for sure. :)

        • Premium User Badge

          Lars Westergren says:

          Congrats! I got adopted by a cat, so we both had good weekends. Suddenly it was just outside the door, demanding to be let in.

  33. A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

    Putting the Wii U on ebay to raise some cash for a PS4. Disgusting I know but how will we know we’re the master race if we don’t at least try some of these Destiny’s and Bloodbornes they speak of? Sad day, I have PC tattooed on my skin but it’s Nintendo blood that runs through me. Mario Kart 8 is the only game I still play though :( sad times

    • Andrew says:

      But, new “Zelda”!..

      • A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

        Rumour is it won’t see light of day till the next console. I was holding out for that and Starfox but, yeah, have you seen Starfox? Yikes.

        • Andrew says:

          I don’t own Wii U yet, ‘cause “Wind Waker HD” is very cool, but that’s just one game (basically, I want Nintendo’s ыныеуьы only for “Zelda” games — 3DS has a ton!, and maybe some other exclusive or two, like new “Xenoblades”). So, yeah, I’m waiting. Maybe it’s better if it get delayed until NX. But it can be “Twilight Princess” situation, too.

    • Det. Bullock says:

      And also I wouldn’t be surprised to see Bloodborne on PC in a year or two, when it comes to Destiny, sincerely from what I’ve heard I don’t see the appeal.

      • Andrew says:

        I played beta on PS3. It’s bad “Borderlands” clone.

      • A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

        Hmm, yeah Destiny is a curio really, not sure I’ll like. Bloodborne is a must though, and having never had a playstation of any sort I’m hoping for more chances to catch up on their famous classics like they’ve done with Uncharted and Last of Us. Demon Souls and ICO? We’ll see.

  34. Arthur ASCII says:

    Well, I’m doing the Mad Max Bygraves thing along with my own music selection. The obvious choice (besides Max Bygraves) really; Maurice Jarre’s Max Max 3 score (Bartertown theme fits perfectly), some Midnight Oil and Tina Turner are mixing nicely at the moment and of course, the Fury Road soundtrack. Press down both thumbsticks to go into movie/screen capture mode and you are now on a photo shoot in your own 80’s pop/rock music video in the Blake’s Seven Quarry with a blood moon on the horizon. It’s awesome. Also, best game-o pixel-pyrotechnics I’ve seen yet. The fire is almost too good. The best bit though… Oliver Reed: “LIKE A STORM!” Oh yes, those storms! Do yourself a favour and Google “MadMaxHudToggle2” though. It’s really essential as it properly banishes all HUD elements i.e. car health bars which the capture mode option doesn’t always remove completely. Just click the right thumbstick to toggle anytime and you’re set. And don’t forget the first person in-car view! Anyway, Avalanche studios you did a brilliant job, thanks you beautiful people! Game montage time: link to youtube.com

    • Arthur ASCII says:

      By the way, if anyone’s interested you can find some pretty cool didgeridoo music to accompany your drives through the Max Max “outback”. For example: link to youtube.com what do you think?

  35. rahji says:

    Witcher 3. Playing on my second playthrough on deathmarch the last part of the story. Initally I wanted to play the expansion after that, but it seems that I need a break from the witcher and get it sometime next year.

    Hearthstone I quit completly for some reason.

  36. Philopoemen says:

    A bit more Wasteland 2 DC – Up to the bit where I stopped pre-DC, and the pre-knowledge paid dividends in terms of gear and stats.

    I’ve actually forgone the previously established wisdom and made my rangers as one each of pistol, ARs, sniper and heavy weapons. Its actually quite fun, and feasible to blat away with handguns now. At least until the robots show up…

  37. Darkheart says:

    I’m playing the wonderful Templar Battleforce. Are you frustrated with the bad IOS port of the latest WH40K tactic ’em up? Look no further friend. This is the game for you. And it’s just 10€ a pop!

  38. yan spaceman says:

    I’ve started another play through of Deus Ex Human Revolution and the DLC thing that takes place halfway through. Best Free Games spurred me to reinstall Trackmania Forever and Have You Played has me on the verge of another play through of Sir, You Are Being Hunted. I’m also still putting time into MGSV TTP and the splendid Pumped BMX+. I would also like to have another crack at Prison Architect. I am a busy little bee.

  39. Stellar Duck says:

    Based on a chat in the comments of last weeks iteration of this column I’ve been playing Red Orchestra 2. It’s so very good.

    Anyone else playing it this weekend?

    • Agnosticus says:

      Still on it whenever possible.
      I’ve recently dusted off the old scoped mossin and hit a new highscore in sniper-rifle-killing-distance: 278m.

    • A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

      I remember that conversation! Will try and get on tonight. Recently discovered charging into built up cap points with a pistol gives you an edge over the bolt action. Need to experiment further

  40. Premium User Badge

    Styxie says:

    Guild Wars 2 because… because that’s the only game I’ve launched over the last two or so months. I tried to launch The Witcher 3 at one point, but I found myself on the character select screen of GW2, and having gotten that far it would’ve been rude not to spends the rest of the evening playing it.

    I still have a lot of catching up to do with Heart of Thorns releasing next week. I was hoping to buy the season 2 story with the gems I gotten from buying HoT, but they’ve not shown up, so it’s back to curb stomping giant dragons and running guild missions this weekend.

  41. DevilishEggs says:

    With all the talk about free games, Transcendence 1.6, which is a great improvement on 1.0, the last version I played. One point six feels like a 2-D X game with the bones of a roguelike.

    Also some Walking Dead Season 2, which I have a hard time with. Without Lee to anchor my sentiments about the adults surrounding Clementine, I dislike most everyone around her. I try to play her as cutting and critical as possible. Maybe this is supposed to be the dynamic, of Clem finding her own way in a hostile world. Some of it, though, is dissonance, like, why does the little kid half to do all the dangerous jobs.

  42. Det. Bullock says:

    Dragon Age Origins: Ultimate Edition using a Mage.
    I had it in my backlog since last Christmas, until now has proven a fairly entertaining Baldur’s Gate-y experience with a dash of Mass Effect style cinematics and choices, though I would really prefer the enemies would stop cracking my mage’s skull, having a malus in cunning with a character built for diplomacy is NOT funny (though I like how the maluses balance out the KOTOR-style post-battle resurrection).
    Surprised at the amount of blood and how bleak the setting is, I like the absence of an overt morality meter and that the only thing that counts is how your party members like (or dislike) you, though at the moment I don’t seem to get very far in this respect as even when I seem to “convince” character of my viewpoint I still lose chunks of influence on them for some reason.
    I’m trying not t use gifts to compensate as the stuff I found until now feels a little silly (Silk Boots? come on, we are essentially wading through the fantasy version of the dung ages!) and from what I read it is a system that easily lends to being abused.

  43. Jekadu says:

    My plan was to mess around with my brand-new Steam Controller all weekend, but apparently all I’ve done so far is play Yuri’s Revenge? No idea why that happened.

    I also just started on Dark Souls, since it seemed like a good game for the Steam Controller. It’s a strange but fun game so far. I keep comparing the gameplay flow to the early Megaman games, for some reason.

    I didn’t actually expect I’d play either of those games this weekend. I was set on playing ESO, TOR and maybe do a bit of Iron Brigade coop.

  44. caff says:

    I picked up KeeperRL as I’ve been watching it for a few weeks and decided to just give it a go. Quite rough round the edges (lack of sound, dodgy music) but it plays pretty well and seems to have promise.

  45. Jekadu says:

    A lack of sleep has caused John to cease perceiving reality in a deterministic sense. He is now playing “Collapse the Wave-form”, a game where you determine reality by observing it. Most people do it instinctively, but when you are sufficiently tired becomes an interesting challenge. The downside is that any diaper he interacts with is stuck in a superposition of clean and… not clean at the same time.

  46. qbnmichael says:

    Blood Bowl 2, it’s better than I thought it would be, it has me slightly hooked. Then a little more of Witcher 3 to finish the weekend off.

  47. moms says:

    I’ll be working on my forward/backward flips in Rocket League.
    I’ve got the rotation down pretty well, now it’s all about moving up/down the field in a timely fashion (while keeping off the ceiling.)

  48. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    More of the same with a dash of new (for me): Minecraft, Hexcells Infinite and Third Age Total War. I’m a newcomer to the Total War franchise, so I’m still learning but it’s a lot of fun.

  49. Grim Rainbow says:

    Want to finish off the GDI missions from C&C ’95. The game holds up really well.

  50. MrPyro says:

    This weekend is turning very board-gamey rather than PC gamey; spent most of yesterday afternoon/evening playing Legendary (the Marvel edition, not the cripplingly hard Alien one), and today will be Imperial Assault; just over halfway through the campaign now.

    Legendary was my first play of that game, and I found it pretty fun. Would recommend.