Posts Tagged ‘Undertale’

Homestuck spin-off Hiveswap starts in September

Hiveswap [official site], an adventure game based on megahit webcomic Homestuck, is finally genuinely almost here for real after several years of development hiccups and delays. September 14th is really the release date for Act 1, developers What Pumpkin Games have announced. Hiveswap is a ’90s-style laff-o-adventure set in the world of Homestuck but not directly adapting it, so prior knowledge is unnecessary. Homestuck isn’t to my tastes but I am still impressed by how it was a webcomic which could only be on the web, seamlessly splashing in animations and videos and games and other technobits. But here, see what Hiveswap is about in this new trailer: Read the rest of this entry »

The RPG Scrollbars: The Many Faces Of Villainy

Not only does a great hero need a great villain, villains are usually just so much more fun. Whether it’s the tortured lost soul who can only find peace by destroying the universe or the cheery psychopath looking to see the world burn, it’s no wonder that many of the greatest films of all time have been defined at least as much by the baddie as any individual scene. Darth Vader, the Terminator, Norman Bates, Dracula… villains get people excited. A great villain lives forever, death be damned. Read the rest of this entry »

The RPG Scrollbars: memories of evil and wickedness

So, a confession. My plan for this week was to talk about Obsidian’s Tyranny [official site] – the game, not any rumours of Feargus Urquhart openly stealing puddings from the company fridge no matter how well labelled! Unfortunately, that plan hit a tiny snag… I haven’t had a chance to play much of it yet. A shame, simply because the genre is well overdue a game that, to quote, Kakos Industries, Does Evil Better.

This week then, a tribute to and call out for the games that at least did evil interesting.

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8/10: Undertale Dev Reflects On Unexpected Popularity

Undertale [official site] launched a year ago today, and creator Toby Fox thinks the same of it now as he did then: “It’s about an 8/10, niche RPG game.”

Fox hadn’t expected – or wanted – it to become so popular, he’s explained in a blog post marking the anniversary. Well! Cobbo straight-up said “You should play Undertale”, our Wot I Think was glowing, Adam tried to persuade the hesitant, and… certain Internauts split into fanatically pro- and anti-Undertale factions. It’s been a weird year for Fox, and his reflections on it all are an interesting read.

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PSA: You Should Probably Play The Count Lucanor

A chum’s been playing dark fairytale adventure/RPG The Count Lucanor and urged me to take a look at it, worried that it wasn’t being talked about anywhere. I had to be held down forcibly in my chair while feverishly struggling to escape from the chiptune Bach soundtrack, but that aside I agree that there’s something a little bit special here.

If you fell for Undertale and have been wondering where to go next, this agreeably unpredictable meld of cute’n’sinister might just the answer.
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Her Story Wins Big At IGF Awards

The 18th Annual Independent Games Festival Awards have just wrapped up, with the 16th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards to follow shortly. I was at the ceremony, which took place in a preposterously large ballroom within the conference centre in San Francisco. You can find a full list of the winners, nominees and my thoughts on the outcome below.

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The RPG Scrollbars: Just Go Along With It, Okay?

Spoiler alert, RPGs are kinda ridiculous. Most games are, of course. While the Mythbusters may have shown that carrying Doomguy’s loadout into battle isn’t as bad as it might sound, there’s a reason they’ve never done a follow-up about doing it after taking a few rockets to the face. Likewise, we can’t know the effect of glugging down fifty health potions a day, but it must mean a lot of pauses for the heroic knight to hurriedly get his armour off for a quick pee-break.

Like a lot of things, there’s a line here – on one side, things that are interesting to see a game justify, and on the other, things that are probably best handwaved. Where does that line lie?

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Undertale’s Patch Is Full of Secrets

For most games, patch notes that read “Updated on Steam to fix bugs and increase compatibility” would be a nonstarter. Ignorable. Useless.

But Undertale [official site] is not most games. More importantly, Undertale’s community is not like most communities. And thus Undertale’s Patch 1.001 bug fixes and increased compatibilities have been picked apart over the last couple days to reveal secret spaghetti or other such nonsense. Spoilers ahead.

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IGF 2016 Finalists Announced

The Independent Games Festival turns up few surprises these days, and that’s okay. The term ‘indie games’ is banned by my hypothetical RPS Style Guide as they’re now so ubiquitous that they’re just, well, video games [two words -hypothetical ed.], y’know? Heck, we ourselves have already implored you to play most of this year’s IGF Finalists and Honorable Mentions, which were announced today. The IGF might not uncover a previously-unknown Next Big Thing, but it’s a fine reminder of fine games.

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The RPS Advent Calendar, Dec 16th: Undertale

What’s the funniest game of 2015? The RPS Advent Calendar highlights our favourite games from throughout the year, and behind today’s door is…

Undertale!

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The RPG Scrollbars: The Scrolls of Honour – 2015

As the dragons finally return to their nests to hibernate and the ghosts don their chains to help remind misers of the meaning of the season, we approach the end of another year. As is tradition, that is time for we at the guild-house to award both quests and questers the ceremonial Scrolls of Honour™. (Chorus of affordable angels)

Scribed upon only the finest vellum in ink taken from a particularly recalcitrant octopus from the Abyssal Depths, they are a testament to skill and imagination and occasional disappointments that mean exactly nothing whatsoever except that I have a column and so I can hand out whatever made-up crap takes my fancy. Lo! We begin!

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Conversations With Myself: On Undertale’s Universal Appeal

Undertale [official site] is a brilliant game and I want everyone to play it. I worry that people will think it’s so deeply rooted in nostalgia that they’ll need a degree in RPGs to enjoy it, or that it’s a series of quirky in-jokes. It isn’t but I don’t want to tell you precisely what it is – I want you to see for yourself. To that end, I’ve had a big conversation with myself to answer some doubts concerns that those of you who haven’t yet played might be harbouring. There are no spoilers.

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Game Of The Month: October – Undertale

You can defeat Game of the Month by pointing out that it’s running a week late, but you could also progress by claiming friendship and offering Game of the Month a hug. As it is here, so it is in inventive, uplifting RPG Undertale [official site]. As a human cast down into monster territory, you must explore and quest and combat, but can do all of them with kindness instead of violence. Drawing plentiful comparisons to EarthBound, it’s the one game you should play this month if you only have time to play one.

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What Are We All Playing This Weekend?

Merry weekend, one and all! May you have a wonderful Saturday, and a calm Boxing Day. Why, perhaps you’ll even manage to get away from your friends, families, and loved ones after dinner to squeeze in a cheeky video game or two before you all wrap up and head out carolling! Here’s what we’ll be playing when we can sneak away:

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Wot I Think: Undertale

I double-take when I see the sign on the front of the library. Something feels off, and I peer at the screen, and there’s definitely an extra letter that’s snuck in there somewhere. The little town of Snowdin is, as the name suggests, blanketed in thick snow, and the lights in the windows of the library look warm. Inside, the librarian looks up at me tiredly. “Welcome to Snowdin library,” she says. “Yes, we know the sign is mis-spelled.”

There is something irrepressibly charming about this.

Undertale [official site], a game made mostly by Toby Fox, begins with a muted cutscene that feels immediately and deliberately evocative of The Wind Waker’s opening mural. “Long ago,” read the subtitles, “two races ruled over earth. HUMANS and MONSTERS.” And then there’s a little picture: a horned furry creature on the left and a cloaked human on the right. The human is holding a spear. The stage continues to be set with that particular blunt efficiency of the older Zelda games; there was a war, the monsters were defeated, they were sealed beneath the mountain. Years pass. A human child, the protagonist, climbs a mountain and falls down an enormous hole. Then the game begins.

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The RPG Scrollbars: Undertale

You should play Undertale [official site]. It’s not had much attention since it came out last week, and that’s a real shame, because it’s one of the sweetest, darkest, funniest RPGs I’ve played in ages. It’s rare to find a genuinely funny game, and rarer still to spend several hours laughing and laughing. My only problem with trying to give it its proper due is that by doing so, well, I inevitably have to spoil things. So, if you’re in the mood for a sweet, dark, funny RPG that’s not just about meta references and jokes about XP being stupid, you go check it out, right now, and I’ll see you next week.

If you need a little more than that, hmm. How to describe it without saying too much? Aaah, I know. It’s a bit like Earthbound, only with the big difference that most of the people with nice things to say about it have actually played it. (No, five minutes with a ROM doesn’t count.) And like Earthbound, you’ll kick yourself if you miss it now.

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Charming RPG Undertale Released

Just another day in the land of monsters.

Many games nowadays are keen to tell you they’ll remember your decisions, but the old demo for Undertale [official site] is one of the few games I’ve seen that remembered everything – across all playthroughs. It’s a surreal and charming RPG about a human trapped in a world of monsters where, sure, you could battle ’em, or you could chat and cheer and flirt with them instead. And, in the demo it least, it remembered and offered a few unpleasant twists on later playthroughs.

Two years after its Kickstarter, Undertale launched today. What surprises await?

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Spare Some Change: Undertale Kickstarter

I checked out Undertale’s demo last week and I strongly suggest that you do the same. It’s in the category of games that I’d call ‘surrole-playing games weird RPGs’, an unruly gang containing the likes of Space Funeral, unexpected adventures that revel in their retro postmodernism. As well as a surreal, funny and touching story, Undertale has random encounters that are actually fun, with a smart bullet hell (or at least bullet heck) minigame to settle combat. But there’s no need for fisticuffs at all because every encounter can be settled through conversation and understanding of body language, which is slightly more difficult when your opponent is a sexy jelly. The Kickstarter has almost hit its $5,000 goal in the time it took me to go to the shops, return and make a sandwich. Still, take a look.

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Undertale’s Demo Lets You Flirt With A Frog

I had been playing Undertale’s free demo for two minutes when the memory of Space Funeral popped into my mind like a drunken Jack in the Box. Ten minutes later, I was ready to quit and around half an hour after that I’d completed the demo, which is a complete short story, and was glad that I’d persisted. It’s a weird adventure in the style of a JRPG, with random encounters, a silent protagonist, single room puzzles and turn-based combat. Stick with the demo through the alternately bizarre and bland opening minutes, and there’s a tiny world of wonder. If you don’t play until the depressed ghost makes an appearance, you have seen nothing.

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