Impact Winter is out, controls fixes coming

I’m not much one for survival games but I have liked the sound of Impact Winter [official site]. It’s a cute third-person survival RPG where, with the help of some friends, we’re trying to survive in a post-asteroid snowland until help can arrive. And huzzah, it’s now out! And boo, it sounds like the controls are wonked right now. The problems sound fixable and developers Mojo Bones are already working on improvements but ah, I’ll wait and see. What a shame. Read the rest of this entry »

Valve hire some Kerbal Space Program developers

The big boys at Valve have hired an unknown number of folks behind the space sim Kerbal Space Program [official site], RPS fanzine PC Gamer is reporting. A former Valve developer said as much in an interview on the podcast Game Dev Unchained and a current Valve spokesperson confirmed it to the mag, saying “We’ll be announcing more soon”. Good work, everyone, I’ve had to do absolutely no digging of my own.
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Red Dead Redemption 2 delayed into 2018

We still don’t know for sure whether open world western Red Dead Redemption 2 [official site] is coming to PC at all. But one thing we do know for sure is that it’s coming out for consoles this autu– what? Oh. Oh, I see. Red Dead Redemption 2 will be coming out for consoles in spring 2018, says Rockstar, embracing the delay into next year by saying that “some extra time is necessary to ensure that we can deliver the best experience possible for our fans.” Fair enough. They’ve also released some dusty screenshots, to soften the wound.

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Why I fell out with Fallout-inspired indie RPG Underrail

Underrail [official site] is a game that wants to be Fallout. That’s okay! That’s a legendary game for several reasons, and some are even good. There’s definitely room for an RPG to be to Fallout what Xenonauts is to UFO: neither remake nor clone, but a new game that does all the same stuff we’ve missed, only without an interface from the Stupid Age.

Underrail, however, is not that game. It’s a bold attempt, but ultimately one that misses too many marks, and copies too many notes from the Bumper Book Of Frustrating RPG Design We Still Have To Put Up With For Some Reason.

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Do Valve own Dota? A jury may decide

Valve may make Dota 2 but who actually owns Dota? A jury trial may be called to decide who — if anyone — owns the copyright, Ars Technica report. Two mobile developers who are making Dota-y games and facing a legal attack from the combined forces of Valve and Blizzard have argued that the Dota copyright was abandoned so they’re free to use it, their logic rooted in Dota’s complicated origins in the Warcraft 3 mod scene. Given that Valve’s lawyers have previously fought the mighty Blizzard’s lawyers to a standstill in a trademark fight, I’d be surprised if this doesn’t go their way, but we’ll see! Read the rest of this entry »

The Joy of Dark Messiah of Might and Magic’s kick

I’ve amassed an arsenal of weapons that would make any medieval fantasy army jealous. Shiny daggers, magic staffs, elven bows, orcish cleavers – my inventory is full to bursting. But the weapon I’ve used the most in Dark Messiah of Might and Magic is somewhat less flashy: my right shoe.

It’s a first-person action game with role-playing elements. Or maybe it’s a kicking simulator, and a brilliant one at that. At its core it’s a game about booting baddies into spikes, into open fires, and off the tops of tall buildings to land with a crunch and a spray of red on the stones below.

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Destiny 2: Don’t Fear The Grimoire Reaper

Rasputin is a warmind.

“Destiny (2) is calllinnnnnnng meeeeeeeee” sang Brandon Boyer of early 2000s hit group The Thrills. “Open up my eeeeeeeeeager eyesssssssssss, cause I’m ready to read more grimoire cardssssssss.”

Well, I have some bad news for you, Brandon. Destiny 2 [official site] is doing away with grimoire cards in favour of sticking the lore in the game and not, e.g. in a completely separate app on my telephone. Read the rest of this entry »

Far Cry 5 trailers tease new setting: Montana

Update, May 24th: Ubisoft today released some artwork which sure makes it look like Far Cry 5 is about a kooky Christian cult. Watch yourselves, gang: the master satirists of Ubisoft are at it again. Who wants to place bets on how many times they say “subversive” during Friday’s big reveal event?

Well, I wasn’t far off in my prediction that Far Cry 5 [official site] would be “set in the fiefdoms of a post-Brexit Britain.” Ubisoft have squeezed out a quartet of teaser trailers for the next open-world FPS and yeehaw, it’s off to that America. These trailers show teensy corners of Hope County in Montana, and… that’s about it. It’s set in Montana. When it is set is unknown. One’s mind might jump to the Wild West but these look pretty dang modern to me. We’ll find out for certain at a a proper big reveal-y thing on Friday. E3 season drags everything out. Read the rest of this entry »

War is changing in Crusader Kings 2

Forget everything Fallout has ever taught you because war is changing. We already knew about upcoming geographical expansions in Crusader Kings II [official site], making areas that were previously impassable playable, but fresh news arrived in today’s dev diary and it involves changes to fundamental systems. The major shift will be in the causes of war, which will no longer require justification in every instance. That could be a dramatic change, given that one of the most important aspects of CK II is the need for a Casus Belli to not only declare war but to inform the goals of a war. The other alterations will come in battle itself, specifically sieges. More below.

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Have You Played… Reigns?

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

Swipe right to build homes for the poor. Swipe left to refuse to help the priests being charged protection money by the army. Swipe again and again to to make decision after decision until death befalls your king in Reigns [official site].

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Grasshopper remaking The Silver Case sequel Ward 25

After revamping their very first game, 1999’s visual novel The Silver Case [official site], last year, Grasshopper Manufacture have now announced a remake of its sequel. Released on Japanese pocket telephones in 2005 as The Silver Case: Ward 25, the episodic adventure followed cops investigating more violent and strange crimes. When and where and how the remake be released are hazy for now but we do know its new name, The 25th Ward: The Silver Case. Grasshopper also announced plans to add extra chapters to The Silver Case in a free update next week. Read the rest of this entry »

League of Legends: The MSI 2017 winners are…

LoL MSI 2017 crowd

PREAMBLE BEFORE THE JUMP BECAUSE SPOILERS BLAH BLAH BLAH AND REMINDER THAT THE MID-SEASON INVITATIONAL IS THE CROSS-REGIONAL TOURNAMENT BETWEEN SPRING AND SUMMER. IT’S A TOURNAMENT IN ITS OWN RIGHT BUT IS IMPORTANT BECAUSE DOING WELL AT MSI HAS A POSITIVE IMPACT ON YOUR SEEDING FOR THE WORLDS CHAMPIONSHIP ETC ETC!

The winners of the League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational 2017 tournament are: Read the rest of this entry »

The RPG Scrollbars: The Fall Of Tyranny

Kickstarter’s been pretty good for RPGs. We may not have seen the next big leap yet – Divinity: Original Sin 2 is looking pretty damn special, mind – but it’s certainly breathed new life into the classics. Wasteland and Pillars of Eternity are both returning. Numenera went down well, despite a little over-promising. Divinity was superb.

Have I left anyone out? (Oh yeah, don’t forget Taz.)

Oh. Yes. Tyranny. If you thought that game kinda landed and faded quickly, you’re not alone. Despite being a very solid half of a game, even Obsidian/Paradox have admitted that when it came to it, “everyone was hoping that it would do better.” I think it deserved to. The thing is, I’m not sure this should have been a huge surprise.

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Unexplored takes on Aliens in free DLC

Unexplored [official site] is one of my favourite new dungeon-crawling roguelikes, using smart procedural generation to create levels that don’t play like anything else out there. There are puzzles and monsters and loot chests, and I love it dearly even though it isn’t even slightly turn-based. I also love Alien, even though it seems to have become a scab that Ridley Scott can’t stop picking at.

The latest DLC for Unexplored, Ripley Run, puts some Alien into the game. And it’s free.

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