LawBreakers open beta back once again with the ill behaviour

Cliff Bleszinski and his Boss Key Productions are holding another open beta test for their gravity-bending multiplayer FPS LawBreakers [official site] this weekend. It’ll start Friday then run until Monday, and you can prepare by preloading the client now. The last beta was one month ago and the game will launch in a fortnight, so this is a chance to see basically what it’ll be like. Changes since the last beta include a sandbox tutorial mode, balance tweaks, matchmaking improvements, and all the character customisation doodads. Read the rest of this entry »

Have You Played… Tribal Wars?

Actual footage of me running from my responsibilities

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day, perhaps for all time.

Oh god. When I think of Tribal Wars [official site] all I feel is a deep, clamouring shame. You see, as a stressed and skint student I became the leader of a hundred villages. I walked to the university library to check on my vassals – all real players with their own villages to run and armies to manage. I rounded up all the clans and unified them under a single banner, using nothing but private messages and internet diplomacy. Then, when our power was at its zenith, when all seemed possible… I abandoned my tribe. Read the rest of this entry »

Destroy all monsters! Gigantic released

Gigantic, the free-to-play multiplayer brawl-o-shooter where each team has the support of a honking great monster, has left early access and launched in full. It offers class-based 5v5 fisticuffs, and did I mention the big monsters? Matches climax with the two bigguns scrapping, see, each team trying to help their megafriend out. It’s a bit MOBA-y, but what isn’t nowadays? Here, have a look in the launch trailer: Read the rest of this entry »

Lick a soulslike: The Surge demo is now out

A demo is now out for The Surge [official site], the new Dark Souls-inspired sci-fi action-RPG from the studio behind Lords of the Fallen. Our boy Brendan declared it a “serviceable” action game, one he had fun with for a bit but ultimately didn’t feel compelled to finish. Which sounds like a game that might be a lark to poke in a demo. Read the rest of this entry »

Soldat dev’s Butcher gets free demo

Butcher

If you were on the fence about whether you’d enjoy Butcher‘s [official site] chainsaw-wielding, blood-splattered, ultraviolent take on 2D platforming, then you can now dip your toe into the red pool without paying anything. The game, from Transhuman Design, the developer of Soldat, just got a free demo.

There’s also 50% off the full game until Monday, so if you like the free stuff it’s only £3.49/4.99€/$4,99 to get the full shooty-bang experience.

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Strike Vector EX’s dogfighting blasts into open beta

Strike Vector EX, an expanded version of 2014’s flashy game about transforming ships dogfighting through sci-fi industrial structures, has launched a free open beta test. The EX releases is updated and expanded with new modes including, crucially, a singleplayer campaign. The original game suffered the fate of so many small multiplayer-only games, failing to achieve a critical mass of players. Which is a bit of a shame, as our former Jim (formerly ours, not formerly Jim – he’s neither dead nor living under a new name) quite liked it. Read the rest of this entry »

Grrg! Arrrg! Unturned leaves early access

Free-to-play DayZ-o-Minecraft ’em up Unturned [official site] has launched in full, after three years in early access. The biggest part of the update taking it to full release is a new sandbox map set in Germany. Chris Livingstone had a crack at Unturned after it rocketed into Steam’s top 10 most-played games within a week, a position it has impressively clung close to ever since (it’s twelfth right now, with around 32,000 players in-game). Perhaps we should feel guilty about how many early access survival games he played for us. But this, this one is meant to be pretty good as they go. Read the rest of this entry »

PSA: Shadow Warrior is still free

Since every other games site is ecstatic to discover this week that the original Shadow Warrior is free, hey, we’ll post it too. I’ll ride that #trending content, blitz the bandwagon, disseminate to the viral limit, and zonk that zeitgeist until the SEO bursts. I know that Shadow Warrior has been free for four years now — a fact other sites seem to have missed — but I also know quite a few folks dig Shadow Warrior so sure, it’s helpful to remind people that it is free. Read the rest of this entry »

Wire Wood Daughters treads through a faded memory

Wire Wood Daughters

Wire Wood Daughters is an Itch.io find [official site] which has a pleasing sense of place and a library of collectables which manages to be evocative in an attractive, bittersweet way- old springs, crooked nails, jade seaglass…

Ultimately the different bits didn’t quite come together for me but the strength of the individual elements and the interesting mix of threat and memory mean I’m still going to tell people to take a peek! Here’s a snippet of video: Read the rest of this entry »

Spider-Man VR now gumming up cybergoggles

Spider-Man, they say. Spider-Man, they repeat. He does whatever a spider can, they tell us. Alas, spiders are incapable of releasing games on PC, so we’re not getting the Batman-lookin’ Spider-Man PS4 game that Sony flashed around at E3. Nope, our fanciest modern-day Webslinging™ option is a new virtual reality doodad promoting that there new movie Ian Hollywood has made. Spider-Man: Homecoming – Virtual Reality Experience [Steam page] is out now, a little doodad free for gogglenauts, and its launch mostly reminds me how much I like other games about swinging around. Read the rest of this entry »

It Is As If You Were Doing Work really is

I should’ve posted about an hour ago but, to be honest, I was too distracted by It Is As If You Were Doing Work [official site] to do actual work. Pippin Barr’s free browser-based game offers a virtual desktop with all the thrills, chills, and Windows alert trills of actual work – but purely for funsies! Mash your keyboard to fill out nonsense e-mails, click buttons, watch progress bars, and feel the real satisfaction of a job done well. Take your fake job seriously enough and you can even earn promotions. Ah, work! Read the rest of this entry »

Ride hoverbikes & eat ramen in shootracer Desert Child

Here’s something to mollify the ceaseless march towards decrepitude. Desert Child [itch.io page] is a stylish sidescrolling shooter where you ride a hoverbike across the sandy remains of a half-deserted earth in an attempt to escape the planet and fulfill your racing dreams on Mars. You need $500 to get a ticket and you’ll need to keep your bike in good working nick and your belly full of cheap noodles while you’re at it. I’ve had a go. It’s not easy (it even feels a little broken in terms of balance) but it is still in early development, so cut a hoverbiker some slack and look at this phwoar trailer.
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Bubsy 3D: Bubsy Visits the James Turrell Retrospective remastered

Against all odds, a new Bubsy game is coming this autumn. Some cynics might say that such a rubbo ’90s platformer series apparently reaching ‘retro icon’ status is yet more evidence that video games mistake recognisability for merit, but me, I know this is proof that Arcane Kids saved Bubsy with their 2013 bootleg game Bubsy 3d: Bubsy Visits the James Turrell Retrospective [official site]. After the bobcat rode a coffin luge into the afterlife, how could he not life forever? Well! Aging plugins made the browser game a bother to play, but Arcane Kids have now released a standalone downloadable version with an added epilogue chapter. In it, Bubsy reflects on his career as an artist. Read the rest of this entry »

Life of Tar takes a journey through sticky prehistory

Life of Tar

Life of Tar [itch.io link] is an itch.io game which caught my eye because of a) its art style and b) it lists the La Brea Tar Pits as an influence. It’s a short cycle where you potter around environments gated by portals of sticky tar. It made for a really pleasant short game walk too so I made a little video! Read the rest of this entry »

Secret World Legends opens its spooky doors today

Last night, a hipster necromancer (or maybe she was a thaumaturge?) stopped me from becoming the main course at a zombie diner. Just a regular evening in Secret World Legends [official site], I guess. I’ve been dabbling in the relaunched MMO’s head start phase for a wee while, but it launches properly today. Read the rest of this entry »

Gigantic launching in July, escapes Windows 10

Gigantic header

Five-on-five third-person brawler Gigantic [official site] will launch in full on 20 July, developers Motiga have announced.

We first caught wind of the free-to-play game way back in 2014, and since then it’s been chugging along under the watchful eye of James Phinney, the lead designer of both StarCraft and Guild Wars. So far the ongoing open beta has only been available on Windows 10, but it’s now broadened its horizons onto the Arc Games platform, so you can play it before release on Windows 7 and 8 too. The final version will also be available through Steam.

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Hitman’s prologue chapter goes free today

The good news keeps on rolling for murder’s favourite slaphead. After establishing themselves as an independent company and securing the rights to Hitman, developers IO Interactive have released the prologue chapter of the recent episodic Hitman [official site] for free. Consider it a demonstration. I did think it strange that Square Enix didn’t release a demo of the stealth ’em up back before they ditched IO but hey, one’s here now. Thanks, independent IO Interactive. Thaioi. Read the rest of this entry »

Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault is free on Origin

Modern warfare is so passé. As video game trends turn again, the Call of Duty series is off back to World War 2, Battlefield is currently larking about in World War 1, and Electronic Arts have dug up an old game from the previous WW2 fad (whose dying embers lit the inferno of the modern warfare craze). 2004 first-person shooter Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault is free right now through Origin, letting all and sundry romp around battles from the Pacific Theatre. Read the rest of this entry »

Colour Clash uses Missile Command-style gaming to create artworks

Colour Clash

Colour Clash [itch.io page] is a little game about firing projectiles to make artworks. There’s a Missile Command-ness where you’re using limited reserves to stop these alien blobs from reaching the ground, but here it’s more about the visual effect you’re creating in tandem with staving off the swarm. When you’re done the level is presented to you as an artwork and your high score is presented as the number of visitors it’s had. Read the rest of this entry »