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Posts tagged “preview”

Feature: Gotta lotta letters

Letters – A Written Adventure shapes the world with words and I liked playing it a lot

Letters - A Written Adventure is, say the developers, "a heart warming coming of age story about finding the right words." It's part puzzle game, part adventure game, part platformer, but all words. I got to play an early demo of it, and talk to the devs, and it made me think about the joy of writing a letter -- of physically putting pen to…

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Feature: From the makers of Planet Coaster

Planet Zoo is a promising zoo game and an exhilarating philosophical nightmare

They say you should never ask how the sausage is made, but in the case of Frontier's Planet Zoo, knowing how the game's creatures were created makes all the difference. Specifically, it's the difference between two kinds of game. On the one hand, a handsome, top-down management sim in which players breed and nurture pleasingly unruly animals for the delight and education of a rosy-cheeked…

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Feature: UBOAT's U-boats are tubular tenements

The Flare Path: Topp Drawer

How humiliating. U-96, a WW2 Unterseeboot on the cusp of greatness, has just been sent to the bottom of the Celtic Sea by a Royal Navy ship named after a hardy perennial. Should I have taken her deeper after disembowelling that freighter with a couple of T2s? Should I have zigzagged more energetically when the boom-barrel deluge began? Perhaps my mistake was not diving the…

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Feature: All aboard the voxel train

Unrailed is boarding the Early Access train this summer and it’s an absolute riot

If you’ve ever played Mini Metro, but thought your solo subway planning adventures would be dramatically improved by having another pair of hands in the mix, then make sure you book a seat for Unrailed [official site]. Unrailed, styled as Unrailed! as if it's being shouted at you with excitement, is a co-op rail-planning puzzler from Swiss developer Indoor Astronaut that will be pulling into…

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Feature: A roguelike link to the past

Sparklite wants to be an “accessible roguelike” that’s more Zelda than Dead Cells

When someone says the word ‘roguelike’, the first thing that’s likely to pop into your brain is a crushingly hard button twiddler like Spelunky, The Binding Of Isaac or Risk Of Rain. Sparklite, however, wants to do things a bit differently. This upcoming brawler adventure game, from North Carolina outfit Red Blue Games, will be joining the roguelike ranks when it comes to PC later…

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Feature: Like evolution, only faster

Sing to a garden and make friends with happy jelly beans in Mutazione

It was explained to me that Mutazione is a difficult game to play on a loud and busy show floor. At conventions and trade shows, someone might notice a free demo station, pick up the controls, noodle around for a few minutes, and then run off because they only have half an hour in which to snarf down an overpriced sandwich. But Mutazione is quiet,…

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Feature: Toasty

Afterparty Hands On: Out-drinking Satan in hell

If you asked me to tell you one game I think you should play from the last couple of years, I'd barely hesitate before suggesting Oxenfree. It is an exceptionally good game, focused on a mysterious tale told through an exquisitely good dialogue system. Night School Studio's follow-up Afterparty is attempting to take it all one step further. A pub crawl in hell, where booze…

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Feature: Malady loves company

Divinity: Fallen Heroes is sort of XCOM for Divinity: Original Sin 2, but doesn’t have its guns yet

“Hot diggity daffodil,” says I, reading a GDC email two weeks ago. “A ‘new and unannounced Divinity: Original Sin 2 title’, what a day!” Eagle eyed readers will have already spotted that the email did not in fact say ‘hot new in-depth RPG Divinity: Original Sin 3 revealed’, and Divinity: Fallen Heroes is indeed not that. I got a hands on with an early alpha…

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Feature: "This is the sequel you have been waiting for"

Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 is happening! It’s real!

Imagine, dear reader, my delight upon learning that Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2, a game about which I have said “...but it’ll never happen” several times, is, in fact, happening. More than that, I have seen, hands off, the first half an hour of it and have spoken to senior writer Cara Ellison (late of this RPS parish), as well as Hardsuit Labs co-founder…

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Feature: Swedes, you are being hunted

Generation Zero rises above the doubts about its concept

The plan was idiot proof. One of us would lob the flares we’d snagged from the church tower to distract the bipedal machine almost as imposingly tall as the church itself, while the other sprinted toward a nearby car and dumped out a backpack full of gas canisters. The firearms we’d collected were so many makeshift plastic straw pea shooters against the hulking automaton’s thick…

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Feature: War makes monsters of us all

A Year Of Rain is an accessible if ambitious upcoming co-op RTS

I was nervous, sitting down to play A Year Of Rain. I don’t have a lot of experience with real-time strategy games, and even though technical director Nick Prühs had explained some of the accessibility features, it still looked intimidating. Plus, as a co-op and a competitive game, it has twice the number of people available to embarrass myself in front of. As I dug…

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Feature: First-person Factorio

Mega-building game Satisfactory is shaping up to be far, far more than satisfactory

Satisfactory, the Factorio-style automated building game from Coffee Stain, is going to be huge. It's going to be huge because there are going to be so many videos of huge things built within it, and we're all going to look at those and think "now I want to make something huge." The overriding question here was always whether or not Satisfactory could successfully transpose the…

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Feature: Edison was just an ass who electrocuted an elephant

Close To The Sun is a horror game that’s definitely not BioShock with Tesla

These days, a lot of people love Nikola Tesla. Tesla deserved Edison’s success and recognition, they say, and should not have died penniless and obsessed with pigeons. His achievements remained pretty obscure for many years after his death, so the resurgence in Tesla-mania over the past couple of decades is fortunate for Close To The Sun, a fact acknowledged by Joel Hakalax, game designer at…

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Feature: Words' worth

Heaven’s Vault preview: an ouroboros of wordery

I love words, me. They’re so expressive and weird and can do so much. I think of people who are very good at word-balling as like conductors mixed with magicians. They marshall all these weird squiggles into a specific order that make other people spontaneously feel real feelings, in whatever order they want. Madness! And the origins and cross-pollinations of language, especially one as terrible…

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Feature: ICE TO MEET YOU

Subnautica: Below Zero thrills with its chills, even at this early stage

Subnautica is one of the great early access success stories. Not just because of its financial achievements - still dwarfed by some of the bigger names - but because of how it used the process to build and refine an exquisitely good game. Co-created with its players, but confident enough to maintain its creative direction, the result is one of the best games of the…

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Feature: Bulls in a China shop

Three hours in Total War: Three Kingdoms, the first Total War soap opera

Once about people in the aggregate, Total War is increasingly a series about the antics of individuals. There's something of the slippage from RTS to MOBA in how Creative Assembly has edged towards a more intimate breed of strategy, built around asymmetrical relationships between overdressed oddballs rather than mere economic considerations or the splash of army on army. Total Warhammer is the obvious play-maker there,…

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Feature: Time's on our side

Katana Zero makes time for more interesting twitch combat

Katana Zero is much more than it first appears. And it first appears to be plenty. A side-scrolling reflexy beat 'em up, painted in very pretty pixels, with a character who cannot take a hit. It's a surprisingly interesting weakness to give your ninja-esque mass murderer, who is fast-paced, all dashes and slides, rolls and manic combat. And yet on top of that there's the…

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Feature: Mad to the maximum

Metro Exodus’s summer map is fun, but it’s at its best when you go back underground

I was told before playing Metro Exodus that, as with the previous Metro games, it is important to think before you act. Seize every quiet opportunity to craft another med kit, a molotov, another filter for your mask. Continually take stock of your, er, stock. And it’s true, there is grim satisfaction in sneaking up behind a weird anti-electricity pseudo-Christian cultist and knocking him out…

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Feature: Rock Hard

Druidstone: The Secret Of The Menhir Forest is making me take RPG battles seriously

The last thing I was expecting Druidstone: The Secret Of The Menhir Forest to remind me of was a deck-builder. Not least because it doesn't feature any decks. And yet, there's something about this deeply tactical isometric RPG, from Legend Of Grimrock's creators, that contains the same spirit of gradually gaining a deeper and more refined understanding of a limited set of tools, through repeated…

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