Posts Tagged ‘preview’

Train To The End Of The World: The Final Station Beta

They could have called The Final Station [official site] ‘zombies on a train’ but they didn’t, and I think we should all respect them for that. In any case, the zombies don’t really go onto the train itself, and in any case they might be some sort of shadow-ghoul. Don’t ask me, I just kill ’em. Or get killed by them. Rather a lot, as it happens.

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Hands On: Civilization VI Is Exciting, Complex & Aggressive

The barbarians are at the gates. They’re not here to kick the gates down and storm the city though; instead, they retreat, in the direction of the camp that spawned them.

“You might want to send a warrior after those barbarian scouts,” Firaxis’ Pete Murray advises, watching the screen over my shoulder. “They’ll fetch a raiding party if they manage to get home.”

That’s new. It’s the tip of the iceberg as far as changes go, but it’s an illustrative example of what the early stages of this game are all about. Civilization VI [official site], at this stage of its development, is host to the most reactive AI that I can remember in the series’ long history. Lead designer Ed Beach and his team are building a Civ game that they hope will pry long-time players out of their established comfort zones, and a too-brief 60 turns with the game last week showed plenty of evidence that they’ll achieve that goal.

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Civilization VI Releases October: Here’s Every Detail

As if 2016 didn’t already contain a rich enough seam of strategy games, Firaxis announce today that Civilization VI will be released on October 21st. Development duties are in the hands of the team behind Civ V’s expansions, Gods & Kings and Brave New World, and when we spoke to designer Ed Beach and associate producer Sarah Darney last week to learn all the details, they told us that almost every system from the complete Civ V will be included in the sequel: trade routes, religious systems, archaeology…there’ll be no need to wait for expansions, it’s all in the base game.

The game is running on a brand new suite of software, built to be far more mod-friendly than its predecessor, and as well as brand new AI systems, there are a host of new mechanics that will explore and emphasise your relationship with Civ’s greatest character: the map.

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From Dust: CCP’s New Free-To-Play FPS Project Nova

Dust 514, the free-to-play EVE Online shooter for the Playstation 3, was a bit of a tragedy for me. It was both relentlessly ambitious and sadly crippled, hamstrung by its attempt to create a microcosm sandbox with a complex relationship to its big brother, EVE Online. But after talking with Snorri Árnason, the senior director for CCP’s new FPS, Project Nova, I’m worried that the failed marriage between Dust 514 and EVE Online is preventing them from doing the one thing worth doing with the recently unveiled shooter: taking risks.

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Hands On: Hitman Hits Its Stride In Sapienza And Marrakesh

After the flashbulbs and pulsing techno of Paris, Hitman [official site] Episode 2’s Sapienza level feels like a holiday – the kind of holiday John Le Carre writes about, in which lingering over your espresso is tantamount to painting a bullseye on your back. Set on the Italian coast, the chapter opens with Agent 47 idling on a bench opposite a fortified mansion belonging to your target, a bioweapons scientist whose latest creation must be nipped in the bud. Under an archway to your left, two sheepish flower delivery drivers are tending to an unconscious cyclist. Somewhere behind you, a couple of heavyset gentlemen chat quietly about a secret laboratory. Off to the right, a woman in the street bellows up at her partner, a sous-chef who is late for work in the mansion’s kitchen.

It’s a world of threads begging to be yanked on, the better to hoist somebody by the neck, but what’s your hurry? You’ve got your paper and the sun is out. With its postcard locales and indulgent pacing, Hitman has always been something of a tourism simulator, and in Sapienza, IO has conjured up the perfect ambience – bottomless blue skies, dusky cobblestones and guidebook hotspots roamed by sweaty foreigners in ridiculous shorts.

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Hands On: Lawbreakers

Earlier this month, we sent Rob Zacny to the offices of Boss Key Productions in North Carolina. The studio are working on their first game, Lawbreakers, a multiplayer action game from a team led by Unreal’s Cliff Bleszinski. Approaching with a healthy dose of skepticism, Rob spent some time playing the game and learning its secrets to see if it could win him over, and to find the answer to his initial question.

Who, I wondered, is going to give a damn about Lawbreakers?

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From Alpha Centauri To Apocalypse: The Design And Inspirations Behind Frozen Synapse 2

Frozen Synapse 2 [official site] is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting games I’ve ever seen. I’ve spent a long time considering how best to put my thoughts about it into words, having met with Paul Kilduff-Taylor, composer of lovely electronica and co-founder of Mode 7 Games, to see how development was progressing. The simple fact is, it ticks so many boxes in the ‘dream game’ column that extreme enthusiasm is entirely appropriate. Here’s why.

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