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John Walker

7 days ago

Feature: VVSOP2123

Star Trek: Judgment Rites is a joyful anachronism from an impossible past

The shock doesn't wear off. Before you all departed for Christmas shore leave, I wrote about returning to the peculiarly named Star Trek: 25th Anniversary Edition, wherein I expressed the complete bizarreness that comes with hearing the original cast of the TV show reunited to voice, of all things, a point-and-click adventure game. Everything about that just seems so utterly anachronistic today, and yet in…

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4 weeks ago

Feature: "That's a phaser, not a flashlight!"

Star Trek: 25th Anniversary has so much to teach modern games

Please update your nomenclature from Star Trek: 25nd Anniversary to Star Trek: 52th Anniversary. It is indeed a worrisome 27 years since this first Star Trek graphic adventure game came out in 1992. But sure - SURELY - it must be absolutely unplayable rubbish now, right? I mean, let's look at the ingredients: TV/Movie tie-in game. Non-Sierra/LucasArts early '90s adventure. Three decades old. Thing is,…

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1 month ago

Feature: Flickering out?

Has time finally caught up with Torchlight II?

The Confusion I feel like I'm having a sort of ARPG existential crisis. With Diablo III continuing to be so popular, the same game finding a new audience and fresh buzz seven years on with its Switch release last year, I wondered if Torchlight II could do the same. A wondering that probably reveals a damning lot, since Torchlight II was actually re-released for Switch,…

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Feature: Thanks for the memories

Nine years on, Amnesia: The Dark Descent is still scary as all hell

I return to Amnesia: The Dark Descent with one question alone: will it still scare me? Amnesia scared the bejesus out of me in 2010 when it first came out. But we all know how games age, and the magic can wear off. At the time the graphics and physics on offer were really astonishing work for a tiny indie team, but what about almost…

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2 months ago

Feature: A force for good

If you like Star Wars you should play the 22 year old Jedi Knight: Dark Forces 2

Star Wars is, for me, first and foremost a video game franchise. I know there are films, I’ve seen some of them (seven of the eleven by my count), but I’m far more likely to tell you that A New Hope took place between the events of Jedi: Fallen Order and Dark Forces II than the other way around. When I see that title fade…

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Feature: The fat lady sings

Steam Charts: Put Out Of Its Misery Edition

This is, really and truly, the last ever Steam Charts. Which, I realise, is something I've said before. More than once. But this time it's really true! Erk, I'm not really sure how to convince anyone of this. I'm the boy who cried last ever Steam Charts.

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Feature: Forever and ever, amen

Steam Charts: Schteam Schmarts Edition

The results are in! The links between the longevity of Steam Charts and the decreases in violent crime, the improvement of sanitary water supplies, and sudden global drops in serious health issues, are no coincidence at all! To quote from the paper recently published in Nature, "Causal links have been shown connecting Rock Paper Shotgun's Steam Charts articles to a remarkably number of positive worldwide…

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Feature: Head banger

MO Astray review

I’m almost tempted to celebrate the appallingly named MO: Astray for not being a Metroidvania. I loves me some Metroiding, but it’s proved a real pleasure to play an action-platformer that focuses on continuous progression without a trace of backtracking. It’s especially a pleasure when it happens in a game as precisely designed as this.

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3 months ago

Feature: Dream Hearts

Steam Charts: Recycled Air Edition

There is nothing worse for a world-leading chartologist (PhD) like me than a Steam sale. All sense is lost, all decorum thrown to the wind, as the same few games come stamping all over everything like an uninvited six year old whose parents let him go to bed whenever he wants. And we're entering Sale Season, people. It's going to get stampy.

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Feature: You won't feel a thing

Steam Charts: Pulling Teeth Edition

The Schwarzschild radius of the Steam Charts continues to shrink as the effects of the Universal Collapse take greater impact on our daily lives. Read on if you want to know how to protect your family from complete atomic devastation.

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Feature: Not the Samus the rest

Outbuddies review

The last few years have seen quite the coming together of gaming platforms. Walls that seemed eternal have come tumbling down, as publishers like Capcom and Konami have brought console exclusives to PC, cross-platform play has become more common, and even Nintendo has released its own IP on non-Nintendo machines. You can even get Mario Kart on your telephone. But sadly, as much as this…

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Feature: Hectocotylus

Steam Charts: Free Diving Edition

People, I face a dilemma. (Great cars, them Dilemmas. - Ed) This week Destiny 2 takes up an astonishing five out of ten spaces on the Charts. So what's a professional games journalist of 20 years experience to do? Write ten octopus facts in less detail but with more jokes, or six more involved entries perhaps better celebrating our cephalopod friends? I've opted for the…

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Feature: The poisonous chalice

Steam Charts: Suspicious Mole Edition

Everything you thought you knew to be true has been undermined by the Great Revelation. Please read on to learn about your new role in society, and how this affects the games you will be allowed to play.

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Feature: Requires more progress

Pilgrims review

The surprise announcement of a new Amanita game, while we were all happily waiting for the announced Creaks to appear, is almost certainly to do with the clandestine nature of Apple Arcade. With so many developers sensibly taking advantage of Apple's pouring money tap, and with the exclusivity arrangement extending only to screwing over Android, us PC players are enjoying a sudden windfall of meant-for-telephone…

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4 months ago

Feature: Totally rad

Encased is an Early Access RPG that’s worth starting right now

I have a healthy hesitation when it comes to Early Access RPGs. It almost never seems like the right method to deliver the genre. And then along comes Fallout tribute, Encased, and I’m pretty well converted. While this first playable release of the game certainly has bugs and issues, it offers a hefty chunk of a completely absorbing and intriguing RPG world, that is quite…

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Feature: Time flies

Steam Charts: Spooky Action Edition

As planet Earth continues its inexorable trajectory toward the encroaching black hole, and ever more aspects of our daily lives are being affected, even the weekly Steam Charts are feeling its affliction. This may seem a more trivial aspect of our final months, but I believe it's vital to recognise the severity of the impact here to better understand the wider implications for how deeply…

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Feature: Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt

Steam Charts: All This Happened Edition

What’s Another Thing You Could Buy Instead Of GTA V Again? A Jurassic Park VHS tape lamp

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Feature: Meta-narrativú

Jenny LeClue – Detectivú review

All my way through playing Jenny LeClue: Detectivú, and increasingly as the game went on, I was certain my overriding opinion of the game would be heavily influenced by how it ended. So much of what the game is about, in terms of its narrative, its meta-narrative and its meta-meta-narrative, leans on its potential resolutions, and your expectations about what those might be. So it…

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