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Posts tagged “early access”

Feature: Drinks all round

Premature Evaluation: Griftlands

You can buy drinks for reprobates in Griftlands. The mingling crimefolk of this sci-fi card game hang out in bars and harbours, lounging on static screens hoping to sell you stuff, or waiting for a fight to break out so they can jump in for either side. There are hairy bouncers, froglike bartenders, and scar-faced bandits. Cultists, bent cops, and bounty hunters of all kinds.…

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Feature: Jump around! (You can't.)

Premature Evaluation – SlipSlop: World’s Hardest Platformer Game

When I was little, I used to eat cubes of jelly. As in, pre-diluted. You know how Hartley’s jelly came in oblong packets, and your mum would open it and out flopped the cubes of jelly, like a chocolate bar gone wrong or a future dystopian food supplement. I would sneak one of the cubes away and gnaw on it behind a sofa cushion, like…

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Feature: Motorbikes and mushrooms at the end of the world

Premature Evaluation: Failed State

I don’t want to become known for always talking about a thing (like how we all gently rib Matt about being a philsophy-toucher in a way that doesn’t amount to workplace bullying whatsoever). This is why I’ve tried to stop yelling at office co-workers about Chernobyl. I don’t want to be Appropriative Post-Soviet girl, who is probably the rubbishest of the X-Men characters. So my…

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Feature: We're going underground

Premature Evaluation – Overcrowd: A Commute ‘Em Up

Commuting is the biggest self-inflicted wound in human history. Whole cities are designed around countless dead-eyed souls expending enormous amounts of physical and mental energy ferrying themselves between their bedrooms and the place where their employment happens, flushing in and out every morning and evening like fleshy clockwork, like turds on the tides. When the great revolution comes and we are freed of the shackles…

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Feature: Does a robot even know what it means to jump?

Premature Evaluation: Levelhead

Shigeru Miyamoto is one of the few bona fide, mega-brain geniuses working in games. Inspired by the time he watched a plumber die of a concussion near a tortoise, the Nintendo luminary invented Mario in his toolshed in Kyoto, using nothing more than a couple of AAA batteries and a soldering iron.

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Feature: Das early access

Premature Evaluation: UBOAT

You know you’re in for some serious submarine business when there’s an option to toggle the curvature of the earth on and off. I’m still not entirely sure what a flat earth would mean for a submarine, in any practical sense. Perhaps if the submarine wandered too close to the edge of the world it would spill over the precipice of a cosmic waterfall and…

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Feature: Burner cards

Premature Evaluation: Trials Of Fire

Trials Of Fire, besides having such a generic sounding title that you forget it every time you’re not looking directly at the words, is a turn-based, single-player, deck-building, choice-driven, procedurally-generated, top-down, role-playing strategy game, set in a post-cataclysmic, dark fantasy world. It’s part The Road, part Tolkien offcuts, as you guide a miserable band of fighters through a blasted wasteland in search of a series…

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Feature: WW2 with cards

Premature Evaluation: Kards

My nice grandad fought in World War Two, along with all of the other nice grandads, against the fascist grandads who were causing quite the stir around Europe at the time. As far as I can tell my grandad had a relatively pleasant time, romping around in the desert with his fellow grandads, firing some really big guns into the sky until he was captured…

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Oxygen Not Included leaves early access on May 28

After two years in early access, Oxygen Not Included will launch in full on May 28th, developers Klei Entertainment announced today. Oxygen is a cheerygrim space colony management sim from the mob being Don't Starve, sending teams of workers into the depths of an asteroid to mine, build, repair, fall ill, starve, go mad, and suffocate to death. I mean, ideally those last few things…

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Feature: Visceral gameplay

Premature Evaluation: Totally Accurate Battle Simulator

Back at PC Zone magazine, where I was born out of an egg, it was my job to take the raw copy submitted by our freelance writers, strip out most of the sexism and veiled threats against politicians, and produce a polished and well structured review that was legally fit for publication. One of the most commonly deleted and cliched introductions to any game about…

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Feature: The Postman Cometh

Premature Evaluation: Willowbrooke Post

Oh, to be a postman. That sultry steward of the mail. That beautiful bastard with the letters. That outrageous freak of parcels. That walking obscenity in Gore-Tex red. That creep who lives inside a van and cannot die, because the postman is both one and many, everywhere and nowhere, always and never. Ding-dong, goes the siren song of the elusive postman. Can you sign for…

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Totally Accurate Battle Simulator is now in early access, totally

After yonks giggling at goofy GIFs of snake-firing archers and googly-eyed mammoths in Totally Accurate Battle Simulator, we can ourselves pit weird armies against each other in physics-driven foolish fisticuffs. Totally Accurate Battle Simulator entered early access today and yes, I know today is April Fools' Day but the launch is real. The contents of the game, perhaps less so. Did Vikings really carry longboats…

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Satisfactory takes down the scaffolding for early access launch

The Factorio-esque delights of building machines to build machines until a pretty alien planet is converted into a vast machine building one really big machine today enters a first-person perspective with the early access of launch of Satisfactory. Made by Coffee Stain Studios, the mob behind Goat Simulator and--more relevantly--Sanctum, it is unashamedly Factorio in 3D but that intimate perspective does make a difference when…

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Factory Town is a cute little production line game

"The twenty-tensies truly were a golden age for games about optimising production lines," future generations will say under their infrared-heated geodesic domes. "The way was paved by games like Infinifactory and Factorio, smoothing the way for a flood of followers," one elder recalls. "Why, one month saw the launch of not only Satisfactory and Production Line but Factory Town too." "What's Factory Town?" asks one…

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Feature: Would you rather have a robot head or crab claws for hands?

Premature Evaluation: Beacon

David Cronenberg's 1986 horror classic The Fly explored the idea of how much of a fly Jeff Goldblum would have to mutate into before he stopped being extremely hot (the answer, as revealed in the DVD commentary, is as high as 65 percent). It also tapped into a deep seated human fear of being trapped inside an elevator with a fly. But more than either…

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Factorio-but-first-person building game Satisfactory launches this month

Coffee Stain Studios are probably tired of everyone saying that their Goat Simulator and Sanctum follow-up Satisfactory looks like a first-person Factorio, but I'd say that's a comparison to embrace. A very good thing given a new perspective, plus dune buggies and jetpacks? Yeah, g'wan. It's been a bit quiet on the Satisfactory front for a while now, other than news that the factory-builder would…

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Feature: Grass tastes bad

Premature Evaluation: The Pusher

As a cool person, I know everything there is to know about drugs and drug paraphernalia, such as bongs and what have you. In fact, you’ll often find me hanging out with my fellow dope-fiends in what we in the business call a ‘drugs hole’, where we take weed, cocaine, and the rest of the types of drugs that there are. “Hey, quit hoggin’ all…

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Feature: In before one of you references Kate Nash in the comments

RPS-o-chat: we’re in love with medieval city builder Foundation

Alec: Foundation is like a ba… no, I already did that. Foundation is - and I’m projecting onto it a bit here - a reaction against city-builders and management sims increasingly inclining towards survival and punishment, in this, the age of streaming and gitting gud. It’s a cod-Medieval town management game, in which the pressure is largely off, and really the focus is more about…

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Feature: Dwarfs, building a fortress

Premature Evaluation: King Under The Mountain

Playing early access games is like being flung backwards in time to a proterozoic era of Earth’s formless prehistory, where instead of lush continents and breathable air there are surging oceans of molten rock and noxious clouds of superheated nitrogen gas. And you’re there on this unfinished planet, standing on the precipice of a furious lake of spitting magma, your eyes popping like overboiled eggs…

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Feature: Smoke without fire

Premature Evaluation: Volcanoids

Volcanoids sounds like a rude illness you need to buy cream for, but you’re too embarrassed to ask the lady in the pharmacy because she knows your mum and even though your mum has seen you in every state of undress and infirmity you still can’t let her know you’ve got Volcanoids because you’re a grown-up for heaven’s sake, you’re a grown-up, why is everything…

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