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Cian Maher

3 months ago

Feature: Michael Collins? In The Hound Pits?

Arkane’s Harvey Smith on why the pub in Dishonored is a perfect rebel base

Dunwall is renowned for its striking dystopian aesthetic, blending blinding walls of light with spindly steampunk stilt walkers. But the most memorable part of gorgeous action-assassin hit Dishonored has, for me, always been the boozer where you hang out with your pals between missions: The Hound Pits. It’s a lovely looking pub, for sure. But coming from Dublin, where subversive relics of independence like The…

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Feature: A seafaring RPG that's a joy to play

Horizon’s Gate review

As I sailed westward along a remote, equatorial coastline, I clocked an unfortunately major issue that was about to befall me: my food supplies were in dire shape, and there wasn’t a single port in view for my crewmates to fill their rumbling bellies at. So, I sailed into deep water until I was attacked by a horde of sea monsters, lambasted them with a…

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4 months ago

Feature: With a handful of Overwatch abilities

Riot’s first-person shooter Valorant aims to take Counter-Strike’s crown

I skulk through a bottleneck boulevard before pausing to launch my newly-charged sonar arrow at a wall. Its my signature ability, and reveals the locations of all enemies within a small radius. As the timer winds down, I decide it’s time for a last-ditch effort to plant the spike. I launch myself around the corner and ru-Bang! I don’t see where it comes from, but…

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5 months ago

Feature: 20-year-old MMO adds 2000 years of history

Runescape’s developers explain why they chose archaeology as the MMO’s newest feature

Runescape’s newest update, Archaeology, adds a whole new skill to the almost two-decade-old MMO, but there’s some necessary context for what it brings to the table - at least historically speaking. At only 10 years old, I was as industrious as they came, and actually set up my own in-game business. I had people - probably much older than I was - chopping wood for…

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Feature: Spirited performance

Ori And The Will Of The Wisps review

Ori And The Will Of The Wisps delivers an affecting tale overall, but it teems with small, strange stories: a cutesy little owlet learns to glide along the pockets of air its massive, dinosaur-sized ancestors once sailed. A small man with a skull for a face tries very hard to save a tree that’s already dead. An ancient frog king fights some sort of weird…

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6 months ago

Feature: What's on the cards?

Temtem’s current ending points to more exciting things to come

Temtem's early access release doesn't wrap up with a nice, warm hug offering clarity and closure. Instead it leaves you on a literal cliffhanger, hook-slinging your way from precipice to precipice on the way to the sweltering savannahs of Kisiwa, a to-be-released island apparently teeming with political unrest and Earth Temtems. I'm not frustrated that the game doesn't currently have a more concrete conclusion. Temtem…

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7 months ago

Feature: Have to tame each of them!

Temtem is the best Pokémon game in years

Tempting tempeh! Tempura templars! Temerarious temperatures! It is unclear at present whether Temtem is a contraction of anything, and what exactly it means if it is, but this Pokélike is the brand new catch ‘em up from Spanish studio CremaGames.Temtem is an unashamed rip-off of Pokémon in almost every respect, but that’s why it’s good. It’s an homage to Pokémon before it was Pokémon, the…

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Feature: I know it's my destiny

Behind the scenes of the games that brought Pokémon to PC before Temtem

Although Switch owners got not just one, but a pair of new Pokémon games this year, folks who are committed to PC gaming got the short end of the Farfetch’d leek. Temtem, an MMO game openly - almost brazenly - inspired by Pokémon is out later this month, but you don't have to wait until the 21st of January to play a Pokalike. See, PC…

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12 months ago

Feature: MOBAball

Premature Evaluation: Steel Circus

“You said you’d be here three hours ago,” my friend barks down the phone. It’s 5:30pm and I’m wearing a Harry Potter dressing gown, nursing a lukewarm coffee, and entering my 30th consecutive futureball match. “Sorry about that lad,” I say, feigning remorse. “I’ll be there in a bit.” As you’ve probably realised, I’m not Steve Hogarty. I’m just filling in while Steve’s on holiday.…

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1 year ago

Feature: Oh! Yes! Hammer down!

The Joy Of Reinhardt singing karaoke in Overwatch

While some people might be into neon-lime Dragonblades and only the edgiest of Reaper skins, my favourite part of Overwatch is its spawn rooms. It’s fun to enter the fray guns blazing from time to time, it is supposed to be an FPS after all. But there’s something about the spawn rooms in Overwatch that adds an extra layer to how you connect with the…

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Feature: Safety dance

The joy of being the belle of the ball in Dragon Age Inquisition

From darkspawn to archdemons, Dragon Age is renowned for its epic battle against undead beasties seeking to wreak havoc in Thedas. However, my favourite mission in the entire series isn’t a magnificent fight, nor has it anything to do with high tales of monsters and men. My favourite mission is a fancy party in Dragon Age Inquisition.

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2 years ago

Feature: The Maiar are super OP and should be nerfed tbh

The Joy Of playing Gandalf in The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King

Bear with me for a minute, and let me tell you about the greatest Lord Of The Rings game ever released. There have been myriad games based on Tolkien’s work, most of which weren’t very good. Some more recent efforts include War In The North and Shadow Of Mordor. I liked the latter a lot, but the fact remains that there is one game to…

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Feature: Philosopher? I hardly know her!

How The Witness fooled us all with a postmodern bait and switch

I love The Witness. It’s a great game. But the more I play it, the more I’m sure that Jonathan Blow was taking the mick out of everyone with it. In an interview with The Guardian, he said he wanted to make video games for people who read Gravity's Rainbow. Widely considered to be Thomas Pynchon’s magnum opus, Gravity’s Rainbow made TIME magazine’s list of…

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