Sometimes you set out to write a themed entry of the Steam charts around anagrams, and end up posting videos of octopuses. You know how it is. Read the rest of this entry »
RPS Feature Colossal squid
RPS Feature Uruk 'n' roll
Shadow of Mordor [official site] has one of the most satisfying combat moves in gaming. It’s a simple double counter, performed by tapping the counter button twice when separate enemies attack you at the same time. You, the ranger Talion, block one attack. To deal with the other you summon an undead elvish Lord called Celebrimbor, who springs out of your body in wraith form to parry the shocked orc’s sword and pummels them into the ground. Every time it happens part of me wants to jump from my seat and whoop.
RPS Feature One does not simply walk into Seahaven
Middle-Earth: Shadow of War [official site] expands on its predecessor’s innovative Nemesis System and its believable NPCs take us one step further away from the static worlds of most open world games. I’ve been thinking about how that works, and why so many games make me think of The Truman Show.
RPS Feature A load of hot air
As the Steam Summer Sale closes, here’s the last of the charts influenced by the discounts, before they return to being exactly the same as they were before the sale, and indeed during it.
So this week we’re going to dig into the history of these familiar names, revealing some secrets of their pasts that many may not already know. Read the rest of this entry »
When Middle-earth: Shadow of War [official site] arrives in October, players will be fight alongside their worst enemy from the first game with their dearest friend. Warner Bros. today added the ‘Nemesis Forge’ to Shadow of Mordor, which can transfer your top Nemesis and most loyal follower over to the sequel. The Nemesis system was the most exciting idea of Mordor — and one that far too few games have copied, both Adam and John will tell you — as random foes became unique recurring loathed enemies, changing and growing after each fight.
Oh, but if you haven’t played Shadow of Mordor, good news: it’s free to play in full this weekend, and on sale with a big discount too. Read the rest of this entry »
RPS Feature Poetry in motions
RPS Feature Must end someday
RPS Feature The best bargains
The Steam summer sale is in full blaze. For a while it even blazed so hot that the servers went on fire and all the price stickers peeled off the games. Either that or the store just got swamped with cheapskates looking for the best bargains. Cheapskates like you! Well, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up some recommendations – both general tips and some newly added staff choices.
Here are the things you should consider owning in your endless consumeristic lust for a happiness which always seems beyond reach. You’re welcome.
RPS Feature Up your game, open worlds
Open worlds are dynamic. Sometimes they live and breathe. Occasionally they are systemic. Their stories and incidents are emergent.
That’s what the voices say, from stages and in trailers, but the pictures tell a different tale. Anthem‘s big reveal felt like a series of echoes rather than a glimpse of the future, Assassin’s Creed: Origins is sprinkling loot and stats across Egypt, and even Metro has sandbox ambitions now that it’s making an Exodus to the surface. But what we’ve seen is more scripted than the teleprompted speakers at one of these E3 press conferences.
Putting the witty, system-led smarts of a Middle-earth: Shadow of War video on the same stage as the rest almost seemed cruel.
RPS Feature Where's my nemesis?!
Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives and PC miscellany. One a day, every day, perhaps for all time.
Remember when Middle-Earth: Shadow Of Mordor [official site] came out, and everyone was all, “WOW! Everyone’s going to be copying the Nemesis system! Hooray!” and then no one has? Read the rest of this entry »
RPS Feature 21 Of The Best 7/10 Games
We don’t do scores on RPS, but sometimes we mourn for the inability to deploy a 7/10. The ur-score, the most double-edged of critical swords, the good but not great, the better than it deserves to be, the guilty pleasure, the bungled aspiration, the knows exactly what it is, the straight down the line. One score that can mean so much.
There is one particular type of 7/10 game that heralds joy, not disappointment: the solid, maybe ever so slightly wonky action game with no interest in being anything more than a solid action game.
Warner Bros. paid “online influencers,” including PewDiePie, to post positive videos of Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. The publisher have reached a settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission over their alleged failure to adequately disclose these payments, as announced by the FTC yesterday.
“These charts are supposed to be weekly, Meer.” “I know, but I keep having to go away for unhappy reasons.” “Oh OK, but you’d damn well better tell me what were the top ten best-stelling Steam games last week, or I’m going to spraypaint pictures of bottoms onto your house.” “Alright, alright, here you go.”
Read the rest of this entry »
RPS Feature Sometimes watching isn't enough.
I had twin criteria for this. The first was ‘is it a decent game?’ and the second ‘does it meaningfully evoke the spirit, themes or characters of the movie in addition to having Quite Good Guns And Graphics?’ The second saw quite a few games which would otherwise qualify ruled out. This year’s Mad Max, for instance, was an agreeable murder-romp but it’s much harder to argue that it nails the desperation or oddness of the films it’s based on. Star Wars: Battlefront, meanwhile, is an OK online shooter with marvellous graphics, but it’s too mechanical to ‘feel’ like Star Wars once you get beyond the spectacular presentation. Ah, ‘feel’. That’s the thing, isn’t it? Does a movie game make you feel like you’re a part of that movie’s wider world, or is it just wearing its skin?
It’s that question which most informed this list. I don’t disagree that there are, in some cases, better games-based-on-movies if ‘game’ is the foremost criteria, but these, in no particular order, are the ten games which most understood and even grew my appreciation for their subject matter, rather than simply piggy-backed it. (Additional FYI: I decided not to include any superhero games, reasoning they’re really their own thing rather than innately movie-based).
RPS Feature Sandbox satisfaction/dissatisfaction
Once a week most weeks, the RPS hivemind gathers to discuss An Issue. Sometimes it’s controversial news, sometimes it’s a particular game, sometimes it’s favourite things and least favourite things, sometimes a perennial talking point. This week, off the back of most of us being obsessed with Metal Gear Solid V, we’re talking about open world, or sandbox games. Big map, go where you please, kill or don’t kill – the GTA, Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry formula. And it’s very much a formula now. How do we feel about that? Has the promise of earlier open world games such as the first few Elder Scrolls been lost? And just why are we apparently giving MGSV a free pass given we often roll our eyes as Assassin’s Creed?
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RPS Feature Bestest Biffs
You probably like action games. But which ones should you like best?! We’ve narrowed it down to 25, and then put them in the unimpeachably correct order. Read on for details of the best action biff-zap-collect-me-do gaming you can stuff down your trousers.
RPS Feature We gather here at the death of deals