Posts Tagged ‘Early Access’

Premature Evaluation: Parkitect

After a couple hours of tinkering and revising, I’ve almost got a decent amusement park in Parkitect, Texel Raptor’s pseudo-remake of Rollercoaster Tycoon. Most of the rides are full or at least half-full, I have a cool rollercoaster or two that are drawing a lot of customers, and I’m turning a handsome profit every month. It’s a good-enough park, and the customers who walk back out through the gates feel like they got what they came for, but with a little more care and convenience it could be great. Not unlike Parkitect itself.

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House Of The Dying Sun May Be The Space Game You’re Looking For

When a new space combat simulator looks as handsome as House of the Dying Sun [official site], that’s reason enough to raise an intrigued eyebrow. When it can evoke memories of TIE Fighter within minutes of loading it up, that’s reason enough to raise a celebratory fist to the torpedo-streaked heavens. But when all of the glories of its atmospheric non-atmospheric combat are packed into a few short missions, it’s also fair to raise some concerns.

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Premature Evaluation: The Solus Project

It's a pretty skybox, until you realize that the meteors can actually hit you.

Few sci-fi games embrace the menacing strangeness and indifference of the universe as you find it in Kubrick, Tarkovsky, or even Scott’s original Alien. Space, and the far future, tend to be familiar analogues to the everyday conflicts we see around us. The aliens are never too alien, and new worlds are never too new.

The Solus Project maroons the player beyond the outskirts of comprehension. It’s a survival game with a little more guidance and sense of purpose that you’ll find in the million other survival games jostling for attention on Early Access. It’s also about a hundred times more polished, which is fitting for a game fast-approaching its full release. But its gorgeous graphics and clever diegetic interface are all in the service of a story of isolation and suspense on a deserted alien world.

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Premature Evaluation – PULSAR: Lost Colony

Hello everybody! Rob is away so Brendan has been drafted in to prematurely evaluate this week. He has decided to go into deep space (again). Only this time, he has a team of cohorts helping him out in PULSAR: Lost Colony. Will the crew become famous throughout the galaxy? Or will they die in a fiery blaze of unimportance? Read on to find out!

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Itch.io Launches Refinery, Attempts To Fix Early Access

Splendid home of indie gaming, Itch.io, has launched its own version of Steam’s Early Access, Refinery. This offers a way for developers to put up early builds of in-development projects, but be able to charge an entrance fee. Good news for devs, but possibly not too welcome to those who have been burned by the system elsewhere, right? Well, Itch hopes otherwise, announcing its launch with the words, “Early access has a problem.”

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Impressions: Flying Tigers – Shadows Over China

One of my favourite games ever is 2007’s Attack On Pearl Harbor. It was an arcade WW2 dogfighting game, that managed to cunningly strip away all the technical complexity of flying a plane, and just have it be pure shooty fun. I’d love to recommend you play it too, but it has entirely vanished from existence. Once on Steam but there no longer (due to “various legal and business reasons” I was once told), I’ve deliberately kept it installed on my PC so it cannot disappear from my account. I am one of very few people who can play this game, and that’s a crying shame.

So it was with buoyant heart that I noticed developer Björn Larsson, then of Legendo Entertainment, now of Ace Maddox, has returned to the genre with the Early Access release of Flying Tigers: Shadows Over China [official site]. It was last year, but I just noticed. Well, he only just told me. It’s his fault.

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Premature Evaluation: Kim

Every Monday, and this Tuesday, Rob Zacny settles down with his game library in search of the next great Early Access game. This week, an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s Kim.

An adventure game based on Rudyard Kipling’s novel Kim [official site] is almost as strange and difficult to assess as the book itself. Like its source material, it’s full of contradiction and complication, a work at once in conflict with its goals and yet more enticing because of it. It shouldn’t work, and in some ways it very much doesn’t… but then you get caught up in it and those objections are forgotten. At least for a time.

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