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Posts tagged “review”

Feature: Apes out

Streets Of Rogue review

The streets are in chaos. There is a police officer beating a slum dweller. A red-shirted gangster has started an ill-advised stabbing match with three members of a rival blue gang. And an ape, recently escaped from captivity, is calmly watching it all, unable to speak the language of these terrible people. Amid such bedlam, what do you do as a player of Streets Of…

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Feature: An elaborate flummox

Etherborn review

"Oooh, that looks pretty," I said, marvelling at the screen that had caught my eye. "It's called Etherborn, please turn the hose off now." Matt explained. He was right. Etherborn is very pretty indeed. It's also a splendid wee puzzle game. And unlike an uncomfortably large proportion of pretty, ethereal, dare I say 'artsy' platformy games, it didn't make my very soul sigh with a…

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Feature: Who taxis the taximen?

Night Call review

When I'm in the back of a taxi I'm most likely to be hoping that neither I or the driver end up coming off as an awful person. I am extremely unlikely to think of the driver as "a priest, a confident, a friend". But for all I know, you, the person reading this right now, are a big weirdo and pour your heart out…

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Feature: Drinks all round

Premature Evaluation: Griftlands

You can buy drinks for reprobates in Griftlands. The mingling crimefolk of this sci-fi card game hang out in bars and harbours, lounging on static screens hoping to sell you stuff, or waiting for a fight to break out so they can jump in for either side. There are hairy bouncers, froglike bartenders, and scar-faced bandits. Cultists, bent cops, and bounty hunters of all kinds.…

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Feature: Alien ant harm

Earth Defense Force 5 review

2356. That’s how many van-sized ants Earth Defense Force 5 tells me I’ve shot, electrocuted, carpet-bombed, mortared and hammered into chitinous shards and umber mulch. All this since a bad day at work saw my security guard character roped into an increasingly absurd arms-race against gigantic invading alien frogs and their legion of insectoid thralls.

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Feature: Close encounters of the bird kind

Eagle Island review

I'm a bit torn, readers. Eagle Island has a lot going for it. It looks lovely, for one, with a rich palette fully enlivening some classic game environments. Everything sounds great, and on paper its design is timeless, as you explore an island level by level, unlocking more powers with each defeated boss. And its novel weapon should be a huge draw - instead of…

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Feature: Generational procedure

Chinese Parents review

I didn't revise in school. I didn't even take notes. Things either went in or they didn't, and there was no point pretending I'd get anywhere staring at them all day. Young Nate Elbow took much the same approach. Despite his natural talents dwarfing those of his dad (the famous novelist Brendy Elbow), his refusal to spend his final school year cramming all the subjects…

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Feature: Jump around! (You can't.)

Premature Evaluation – SlipSlop: World’s Hardest Platformer Game

When I was little, I used to eat cubes of jelly. As in, pre-diluted. You know how Hartley’s jelly came in oblong packets, and your mum would open it and out flopped the cubes of jelly, like a chocolate bar gone wrong or a future dystopian food supplement. I would sneak one of the cubes away and gnaw on it behind a sofa cushion, like…

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Feature: Lords of luck

Dota Underlords review

I look at my enemy, and I despair. Their army bristles with max-level units, scary abilities, synergies between both. Losing one more fight will knock either of us out of the game. It's do or die. I plunge all my funds into last-ditch recruitment, refreshing the available roster of heroes time and time again in the hopes of stumbling across one - just one, please,…

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Feature: Catus Aran

Gato Roboto review

Cats are adorable house pets loved by millions, but they're also fluffy little terrors. They can bring home their terrified, half-dead prey, lie down in really inconvenient places, or, y'know, press the one button that makes your spaceship plummet into an abandoned research facility. Gato Roboto is a cutesy platformer where you control Kiki, the house cat of a pilot name Gary, who is now…

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Feature: I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky

Sea Of Solitude review

The character Britta from the TV show Community once, when challenged, described an analogy as “like a thought with another thought’s hat on”, which is pretty good. So, that being the case, Sea Of Solitude is like a whole bunch of thoughts wearing other thoughts’ hats. The thoughts all did a wacky hat swap at the office for Comic Relief, and now none of the…

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Feature: Motorbikes and mushrooms at the end of the world

Premature Evaluation: Failed State

I don’t want to become known for always talking about a thing (like how we all gently rib Matt about being a philsophy-toucher in a way that doesn’t amount to workplace bullying whatsoever). This is why I’ve tried to stop yelling at office co-workers about Chernobyl. I don’t want to be Appropriative Post-Soviet girl, who is probably the rubbishest of the X-Men characters. So my…

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Feature: Tasty Bagrations

The Flare Path likes Steel Division II

If the dazzlingly different duplex wargame I've been enjoying this past week was a debut release from a small, impoverished specialist studio that few had heard of, the paragraphs that follow would radiate enthusiasm. Because it's actually the work of a big (though not quite as big as it used to be) well-heeled company with a long history of producing well-received military strategy titles, the paragraphs that…

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Feature: Tiny game, tiny price

1 Screen Platformer review

1 Screen Platformer is a misnomer: the level might technically fit within 1920x1080 pixels, but the camera is zoomed in at all times. That means you never see the level as laid out above, with all the many deaths that await you on a single screen. Still, the idea is sound: a single level of tricky platforming challenges to be completed with 4 characters, each…

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Feature: We're going underground

Premature Evaluation – Overcrowd: A Commute ‘Em Up

Commuting is the biggest self-inflicted wound in human history. Whole cities are designed around countless dead-eyed souls expending enormous amounts of physical and mental energy ferrying themselves between their bedrooms and the place where their employment happens, flushing in and out every morning and evening like fleshy clockwork, like turds on the tides. When the great revolution comes and we are freed of the shackles…

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Feature: Eat yer heart out, Fran Healy

The Sinking City review

There are many types of rain. As we speak, the south of England is blessing us by alternating sunshine with heavy showers that are refusing to turn into a storm. Instead of clearing the air, the rain is only making it more humid. In 1920s Oakmont, the fictional town in new Lovecraftian detect ‘em up The Sinking City, the flavour of the day is constant…

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Feature: Katana Zero, My Friend Pedro nil

Katana Zero review

Katana Zero has the juiciest text boxes I've ever seen. During dialogue, words can imply the pace of speech by appearing letter-by-letter or thumping on screen one word at a time. Words and phrases can be highlighted in different colours, and can further suggest intonation by animating wavily or by each letter shaking as if terrified. When in conversation, there's a timer during every player…

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Feature:

They Are Billions review

Occasionally, when I pause They Are Billions and zoom out on my tightly packed, grid-based steampunk settlement, I think about how the tiny families in the centre could have just as easily lived their entire lives without ever seeing a single zombie. There’s little in the way of a fixed story or characters in this survival strategy, either in its separate challenge maps or ambitious,…

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Feature: Fails to attain Equilibrium

My Friend Pedro review

My Friend Pedro looks incredible in animated GIFs. That's how I first encountered it, via a short clip which showed a man in a mask, hanging upside down from a zipline while he fired twin pistols in opposite directions. Now that I've played this run-and-gun platformer for myself I can confirm that this is one of many spectacular moves it allows you to smoothly and…

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