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Graham Smith

1 day ago

1 week ago

Feature: Dead Cells meets Celeste

ScourgeBringer is your next roguelite crush

ScourgeBringer is a game that exists in your fingers. It's an action roguelite fidgetspinner about bish-bash-boshing across single screen levels of enemies. The protagonist Kyhra has a sword for slashing, a drone that can fire a blast of bullets, and a set of movements that feel sublime to control. I've been playing an early alpha ahead of an early access release planned for later this…

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Feature: A game about death but not about killing

Spiritfarer is about death, but it’s how it treats life that makes it unusual

"We all die, everything dies, every living thing dies." Nicolas Guérin is reassuring me. He's the creative director at Thunder Lotus Games and they're working on Spiritfarer, announced at E3 2019 as a "cosy management game about dying." I need reassuring because I've played a 15-minute demo of Spiritfarer and I'm worried that a game that treats death lightly will make light of the suffering…

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Elite Dangerous to get fleet carriers and new premium currency

Warframe wasn't the only game to have a fan event this weekend. July 5th-7th was also Lavecon, Elite Dangerous's smaller fan gathering. To coincide, Frontier revealed details of their coming September and December updates. The former is introducing a new premium currency and a revised start for new players, while a trailer showed the latter's fleet carrier ships for the first time.

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Warframe: all the news and trailers from TennoCon 2019

This weekend was TennoCon, the annual Warframe fan event, and as is tradition Digital Extremes showed swathes of new updates coming to their free-to-play space ninja game. Matthew was there and has already written his impressions of Warframe Empyrean, which is adding spaceship combat to the game, but there were other announcements, reveals and releases. Those include: a new Warframe Prime release, a trailer for…

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2 weeks ago

Mordhau dev statement clarifies ‘no plan’ for character filter, say artists “were ill-informed”

Mordhau developers Triternion have released an official statement responding to the claims they planned to introduce a toggle to hide women and non-white characters from their medieval murderfest. Those claims, I should say, were made by Triternion themselves, in an interview between two of the company's artists and PC Gamer. The official statement says that they never had plans for a toggle on non-white characters,…

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Mordhau devs deny plan for toggle to hide women and non-white characters, after telling people of that exact plan

Mordhau's developers Triternion have denied on Twitter that they ever "had plans to add a toggle to hide other ethnicities or 'disable characters that aren’t white'" in their hacky-stabby medieval multiplayer game. This is bold, given that they previously told PC Gamer explicitly that a plan to add such a toggle was their "current thinking." Let's unpick this mess.

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It’s summer in Routine Feat, from the maker of It’s Winter

There's a piece of paper by my desk that reads, "My work does not bring joy and is not so important for me and the people around me, but I cannot quit it. Otherwise, what will I eat?" Alright, Routine Feat, I know it's Monday but take it easy. This is the latest first-person prod-about by Alexandre "Sad3D" Ignatov, who earlier this year made Alice…

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3 weeks ago

Feature: Tiny game, tiny price

1 Screen Platformer review

1 Screen Platformer is a misnomer: the level might technically fit within 1920x1080 pixels, but the camera is zoomed in at all times. That means you never see the level as laid out above, with all the many deaths that await you on a single screen. Still, the idea is sound: a single level of tricky platforming challenges to be completed with 4 characters, each…

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Feature: Katana Zero, My Friend Pedro nil

Katana Zero review

Katana Zero has the juiciest text boxes I've ever seen. During dialogue, words can imply the pace of speech by appearing letter-by-letter or thumping on screen one word at a time. Words and phrases can be highlighted in different colours, and can further suggest intonation by animating wavily or by each letter shaking as if terrified. When in conversation, there's a timer during every player…

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4 weeks ago

Feature: Fails to attain Equilibrium

My Friend Pedro review

My Friend Pedro looks incredible in animated GIFs. That's how I first encountered it, via a short clip which showed a man in a mask, hanging upside down from a zipline while he fired twin pistols in opposite directions. Now that I've played this run-and-gun platformer for myself I can confirm that this is one of many spectacular moves it allows you to smoothly and…

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1 month ago

Feature: Stop whooping at corporate acquisitions

Stop worrying about timed exclusives and worry more about games industry consolidation

On Sunday at E3 2019, Microsoft announced they had bought Double Fine. At last year's show, the tech giant announced they had bought Ninja Theory, Undead Labs, Playground Games and Compulsion Games, then added Obsidian and inXile in November. In the last 8 months, THQ Nordic has purchased Piranha Bytes, Bugbear Entertainment and Coffee Stain Studios, as well as the IP for TimeSplitters, Carmageddon, Outcast…

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Forza Horizon 4 LEGO Speed Champions adds new world of blocks to last year’s best racing game

Forza Horizon 4 was fun, joyful and generous - one of our favourites of last year (scroll down) - and so this Lego DLC is in some senses the perfect colission. Forza Horizon 4 LEGO Speed Champions introduces a world of colourful blocks to the racing game, with Lego cars to drive and the same seasonal changes as the base game. It'll be out in…

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2 months ago

Feature: BioShock: The Roguelite

Void Bastards review

If Gone Home is the answer to the question, "What if BioShock without guns?", then Void Bastards is the answer to the question, "What if BioShock without story?" On a series of post-disaster spaceships, each rendered in a slick comic book style, you fight or avoid grumpy mutants, circumvent security systems, hack turrets, and rummage through bins like yer da after that time he accidentally…

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Gamer Network is hiring for a new tabletop site

RPS used to have a boardgame column and we still regularly get people asking if they can write about tabletop games for us. There will soon be a better location for that kind of work, however. Gamer Network - the corporate overlords of RPS, Eurogamer, GamesIndustry.biz, and more - are launching a tabletop website and YouTube channel. They're now hiring for all sorts of roles…

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3 months ago

We’ve increased our freelance rates, so come write for us

As John carefully detailed before his departure, RPS was founded by four freelance writers who were frustrated by the falling rates they were being paid. Though those founders are gone, almost all those of us left behind (abandoned, dirty, grieving) were freelance ourselves at one point or another and have dealt with the same frustrations. So here's a thing: we're increasing our freelance rates. If…

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Feature: A thing you should definitely do

How to pitch an article to Rock Paper Shotgun

Hello! We regularly receive pitches from freelance writers. Many of these pitches are excellent, many of them are bad, and many more forget to include the article idea and just yell at us at length for stopping them from ad blocking on the site. If you're interested in pitching an article of your very own to us, read on, as we're about to explain how…

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Thank you and farewell, John Walker

I have a lot of conversations with a lot of people about what RPS is, and after years of trying to sum up this dumb website, I've settled on using the same answer each time. I say: ask ten people to describe what RPS does, and you'll get ten different answers. One will say we're that website which writes silly, in-jokey nonsense about PC games.…

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