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Posts tagged “Have You Played”

Feature: Building bridges

Have You Played… The Bridge?

Before Monument Valley brought its Escher-inspired worlds to the iOS masses, there was The Bridge. Not to be confused with the excellent Scandi-crime drama of the same name (although it's arguably just as sinister thanks to the cold, dead, pupil-less eyes of the protagonist and the grinning, malicious balls everywhere just waiting to fall on your head), The Bridge is a twisty turny 2D logic…

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Feature: Like the beginning of 'Revenge of the Sith', only good.

Have You Played… Gratuitous Space Battles?

Like a tin of hyperstrength lager lurking behind grubby plastic curtains in the chiller cabinet of a dismal newsagent, Gratuitous Space Battles knew just what it was about, and didn’t make any secret of the fact. It was about selecting massive fleets of spaceships, tooling them up with guns, and wellying them into each other like shopping trolleys full of anvils.

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Feature: This void ain't big enough for the both of us

Have You Played… Bowman?

While the nerds played football outside, us real men (we were ten) spent our lunchtimes fighting for our lives. Every battle saw two stick figures enter, one stick figure leave. Or more precisely, stand around doing absolutely nothing while the other figure oozed blood modelled in MS paint. Bowman was a lark.

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Feature: Tomb Raider's re-reboot was a big mood

Have You Played… Tomb Raider (2013)?

Tomb Raider’s reboot hit us the same year I started university, so emotions were already riding high, but as soon as I dove into Lara’s world once more I felt a little more at ease. I don’t think she felt more at ease, due to all the horrific deaths I accidentally put her through, but I really needed to hang out with an old friend…

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Feature: Maybe it was Memphis

Have You Played… Predynastic Egypt and Egypt: Old Kingdom?

Although I’d call myself a big fan of the Civilization franchise, the truth is that what I’m really a fan of is Civ’s early game. Sure, mass infantry wars and space programmes are alright. But for me, it’s all about those first fifty turns, shepherding a gang of vagrants with hollowed-out owls for shoes into a rudimentary culture with writing, pottery, and a place to…

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Feature: Woohoo, Whoopdie-Doo

Have You Played… Spooky Castle?

If you are one of those enlightened individuals who somehow came across this absolute gem back in the early 2000s, then don your rose-tinted spectacles and join me in this steaming hot tub of nostalgia. For those who haven't had the pleasure, allow me to introduce you to some of the most hilariously bad sound effects of any game ever.

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Feature: What are these controls?!

Have You Played… Crusader: No Regret?

I was never allowed to play Crusader: No Regret or indeed its predecessor Crusader: No Remorse when I was a lad. Despite being two of Origin System's most impressive action games, they completely passed me by. Yet the Silencer was such a distinctive character in my mind, his bright red space armour glimmering as I stared at the box for both games. What was going…

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Feature: I don't think this counts as breaking and entering

Have You Played… Marie’s Room?

Marie’s Room is perhaps one of the shortest games I’ve ever played. Intentionally short, anyway. There are plenty of games that have made me want to stop playing and so have been "short" for the wrong reasons, but Marie’s Room is a short game I wish was longer. Although I understand entirely why it had to be the length it was. There are no save…

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Feature: Torment and tide wait for no man

Have You Played… Torment: Tides Of Numenera?

Torment: Tides Of Numenera is apparently a 'thematic successor' to Planescape: Torment, which, as descriptors go, is even more woolly than 'spiritual successor'. Translated into jargon talk, this is a single-player RPG with an isometric perspective, set in a part-fantasy part-steampunk universe, and it's so story driven that it's basically like reading a book.

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Feature: Crickets

Have You Played… Comedy Night?

Comedy Night was always going to be a cesspit. Take the anonymity of the internet and combine it with the open stage of a virtual comedy club and you end up with a form of digital sewage that is very vile and only a little fascinating. On paper, it's a game about doing a stand-up routine as a big-headed avatar and seeing how the other…

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Feature: Mindbogglingly confusing

Have You Played… Antichamber?

Years after Antichamber befuddled and flummoxed those who played it, there are trickles of new players discovering this gem for the first time. "Made my brain hurt", commented one a few days ago. "Every level is super mind-blowing" said another. Even years after I first played and completed this baffling puzzle game from Alexander Bruce, I recently came back to discover that, in forgetting the answers,…

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Feature: The chances of anything coming from Mars...

Have You Played… Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds?

What a world, where I find myself fondly reminiscing about that 1998 videogame adaptation of that 1978 musical adaptation of that 1898 classic sci-fi novel. With Jeff Wayne's The War of the Worlds, you didn't need years to pass and technology to improve in order to retrospectively realise what a mess the game was. I was just a single-digits-year-old kid and even then I knew…

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Feature: Two-faced

Have You Played… Batman – The Telltale Series?

Batman - The Telltale Series should probably have been called Bruce Wayne - The Telltale Series given how little screen time the Dark Knight actually gets in the first season of this ill-fated episodic adventure game, but I'd argue that it made for a more meaningful take on some of his relationships with the wider Batman cast - and specifically a person who's obviously very…

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Feature: Persistently good

Have You Played… Foxhole?

Look lively soldier, the country is at war. There are grey-uniformed murderer-men spilling over our barbed wire. Enemy motorcycles zooming around our roads, uncontested. They’re killing your comrades soldier, are you just going to stand there and take it? Good! Glad to see that iron resolve flaring up, glad to see y– JESUS CHRIST put that rifle down. No, no. That’s not what I meant.…

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Feature: In memory of Dr Funfrock

Have You Played… Little Big Adventure 2?

Little Big Adventure 2 (which went by the only slightly better name of Twinsen's Odyssey in the US) was a follow-up to the previous alien action-adventure I've already talked about. But this time it's in 3D. If there's any lesson to take away from this, it's that fixed camera angles do not work in 3D, outside of horror games. I recently revisited it and it's arguably…

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Feature: Avengers vs Aliens

Have you played… XCOM 2: War Of The Chosen?

My favourite XCOM is XCOM: Enemy Unknown*, a pure and direct, no mess/no fuss modern-day remix of metagame-augmented turn-based tactics. My second-favourite XCOM is the polar opposite, XCOM 2 DLC War Of The Chosen, an absurd explosion of superheroics that throws internal logic to the wind.

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Feature: Brief encounter

Have You Played… One Night Stand?

One Night Stand is a perfect study in awkwardness. When you wake up in a stranger's bed with a stinking hangover and no memory of the night before, just what is the polite thing to do? Get dressed and leave as quickly as possible? Pry into her wallet to try to find out her name so you don't look like a total jerk? Or perhaps…

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Feature: My first love

Have You Played… World Cup 98?

It's one of my most distinct early memories. I was about four or five years old, watching my dad play World Cup 98 on our big bulky cream-white brick we called a computer monitor back then. I was absolutely enraptured, and asked if I could play. It was the first time I'd played a "real" (read: non-educational) game on the PC.

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