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Matt Cox

3 months ago

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The Sunday Papers

Sundays are for one last hurrah, before melting into the freelance void. I will miss you, paps. Here's the best writing about videogames from the past week.For Polygon, Avery Helm dove into the weird, wild world of Blaseball. It reminds me of board games like Risk/ Pandemic Legacy, where the rules to something simple shift beneath your fit - except those rules are shifting for…

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Fall Guys stop existing when they stop competing, says senior designer

"The first one pager we put together for Fall Guys was basically gifs of Takeshi's Castle, and basically it was like 'Gang Beasts + Mario Party + Battle Royale'. I'm not joking, it wasn't really much more than that that got the game signed".I'm watching an interview with Fall Guys senior designer Joe Walsh, and it's almost as lovely as the game wot he helped…

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Feature: A bit damp

Risk Of Rain 2 review

I was ready to give up on Risk Of Rain 2. On the face of it that doesn't make much sense, because it's a 3D followup to an excellent platforming roguelike where possibility spills from cascading item combos. It's like if The Binding Of Isaac was a third-person shooter set on an alien planet where dinosaurs, ghosts and automatons team up to kill you. I…

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Former Dishonored creative director suggests all genres could be immersive sims

Some former Prey and Dishonored developers are making Weird West, a top-down cowboy action-RPG that's a bit like an immersive sim. This much we knew, and had already puzzled over. Fondly, like. The dev's pedigree gained my curiosity, but this interview with Prey and Dishonored creative director Raphael Colantonio has my attention.Weird West will be an "action-resolved version of something like Fallout meets Ultima 7",…

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4 months ago

The Fall Guys devs are discussing a level editor, but warn it’s a “huge undertaking”

Fall Guys came out last week and took the world by freak jelly storm. Over two million people have played it on Steam alone, which strikes me as an appropriately silly number for a game where 60 beans must complete ridiculous obstacle courses. As I just said in my Fall Guys review, the first few hours are a treat.Sadly, I'm nearly ready to stop Falling.…

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Feature: Bouncing beans burn brightly, but briefly

Fall Guys review

Videogames make me squeal a lot. Most people I've lived with have commented on this fact, with varying degrees of approval. Mostly people say it's nice, because they're usually squeals of joy, and usually come immediately after a pal has just done something ridiculous in Valorant or something. Even so, when I tell you that I spent my first half an hour or so with…

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I love this man’s enthusiasm for an innovative AI mocap technique

I like neat AI stuff. The prospect of making machines autonomously clever (whatever that means) is a fundamentally exciting concept to me, even though there are plenty of ways in which AI is being and will be used to make people's lives worse. I'm therefore a prime target for Two Minute Papers, a YouTube channel that takes interesting research papers and presents them with hyper-infectious…

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Feature: Look without to look within

What Fall Guys can teach us about the nature of humanity

What makeths a man? The finest minds of our generation have already pitted their wits against this most fundamental of questions, and you may (fairly!) scoff at any newcomer with the audacity to trample over established wisdom with his own. Nevertheless, that is exactly what I shall now endeavor to do, for I believe I have access to a vital cultural artifact my predecessors were…

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Everyone loves Fall Guys, so here are some amazing falls, guys

The battle-royale-but-not-like-that videogame known as Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout has exploded. In a good way. Everyone and their squishy cartoon dog has been playing it, to the point where developers Mediatonic had to repeatedly take down their servers for beefing purposes.It's a game show in the vein of Total Wipeout, or possibly an extremely squidgy version of Takeshi's castle. Players are whittled down from 60…

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Feature: Always attack with owls on Tuesdays

Fae Tactics is a fiddly homage to Final Fantasy Tactics

Fae Tactics is turn-based wizard whacking in the same vein as the much-beloved Final Fantasy Tactics series, which is one of the few classic FF spin-offs that has somehow managed to bypass coming to PC throughout its long, if slightly spotty history. It's effectively to Final Fantasy Tactics what Wargroove was to aggrieved Advance Wars fans - a game which scratches that nostalgic, pixellated tactics…

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The Monday Papers

Mondays are for hoping your new graphics card arrives, seen as your old one got burgled last week. I'm fine! It's fine! Burglar: caught. Videogames: written about. Here's the best writing from the last week.For UpperCut, Grace Curtis spoiled Life Sim games forever. She's managed to describe the listlessness that crept into my Stardew Valley farm so eloquently that the prospect of ever booting up…

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Console an AI about its lack of sentience in AI Dungeon 2

I wrote about AI Dungeon 2 when it came out last year, but I really should have been keeping up with it. It's essentially a messy yet occasionally flabbergasting chat bot that spins up text adventure games, improvised from your prompts and the stupid-big amount of data it's been trained on. Developers Latitude have updated it loads since I posted about it in December, adding…

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For Honor’s Core Combat update wants you to be more aggressive

Vikings are cowards. Same goes for knights and samurai. If you're a competent fighter in For Honor, then you might have clocked that defensive moves often beat out aggressive ones. Right now you can merrily block away until your opponent exhausts themselves, then go at 'em as they wheeze. This may have had something to do with my skill level, but counter-attacks seem a tad…

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Hellpoint is an action RPG where Dead Space meets Dark Souls, out now

Alright, Dark Souls fans. You know the drill. Hellpoint is an optionally-cooperative "intense action RPG". It's all gloom and shortcuts, and it's out right now. For some reason developers Cradle Games aren't billing it as a Souls 'em up but I'm onto them. Regardless, it could be neat. You're poking around a sci-fi citadel gone bad, now "overrun by cruel interdimensional entities acting as puppets…

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Feature: Bernard's Watching

Have You Played… Life Is Strange?

I watched a lot of Bernard's Watch as a child. This has left me with infrequent frustrations over not being able to pause time at my whim, and an unease over the prospect that anyone with such an ability would almost inevitably age, wither, and die before any of their loved ones. The greatest failing of Bernard's Watch was its cowardly decision to leave this…

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Epic Games Store testing out achievements, with mod support still brewing

The Epic Games Store has started testing out achievements, which is nice. I like it when I do something ridiculous in Slay The Spire and a little picture comes up acknowledging how awesome I am (and ideally just how small a percentage of people are awesome in the same way). I would like this for Epic-only games too. They've shown off some for Ark: Survival…

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Valorant’s now officially unveiled new agent has many adorable robots

I've already posted about Valorant's new upcoming agent, but now she's official. Following an accidental leak, Riot have unveiled Killjoy in the way they meant to: with a trailer that looks like one of those commercials for stupidly expensive gadgets you don't need. She's a turret-packing, grenade-chucking, robot-deploying hacker who looks a bit like ex-RPS vidbud Alice Liguori. I'm being snarky but I do quite…

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