Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Brendan Caldwell)

Every now and then, in this vast hall of GIFs we call the internet, I see the mini-monsters and dancing townsfolk of Ooblets [official site] and it makes me feel good about life. It s an as-yet-unreleased game of farming, raising creatures, and living among the townsfolk of Hubton . It s sort of like Harvest Moon meets Pok mon meets Animal Crossing meets the weird awkward people we are, say the creators at Glumberland. Now they ve been picked up by publisher Double Fine and have released a new trailer to celebrate that fact. Good stuff. … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Fraser Brown)

Everything was in place for the Romulan invasion of the United Federation of Planets. Warbirds screeched out of the shipyards of Romulus and Remus on a direct course for the closest Federation worlds, those belonging to the chilly Andorians. The real goal, of course, was neighbouring Vulcan. This was a symbolic war.

As my jade vessels bombarded the frozen Andorian homeworld, the Tal Shiar informed me that yet another Federation ship had been successfully sabotaged. When my Reman shock troops boots hit the icy ground, I realised that Star Trek: New Horizons, a Stellaris [official site] mod, was my favourite ever Roddenbery-flavoured game.

… [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

Lop the typing gland off Mavis Beacon, cut a graft slit into Gunpoint, then insert the typing into the window-smashing platform-o-hacking stem and seal the graft with wax, and- dear god, what have you done? Did you think that would work? How do you even think games are made? You big silly. You leave the work to Cut Garnet Games, who are making the interesting-looking Rogue Process [official site]. It’s a stealth-o-action platformer about infiltrating buildings to hack systems, right, but hacking is down by typing the names of systems and abilities in a slow-mo word mode. Here, watch: … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Philippa Warr)

Thimbleweed Park

This week I’ve been tinkering with a preview build of Thimbleweed Park which is the point and click murder mystery from Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick (them off Maniac Mansion). I used to love playing point and click games when I was little – my siblings and I would play them together over weeks and weeks – but for me they feel so rooted in that time’s technology and gamescape that I don’t think I’ve found any of the modern revamps/revisits/reworks/riffs of interest. Thimbleweed Park’s recent trailers did trigger a little frisson of curiosity though, and I’ve also been tasked with booting up The Dig by John for a new Game Swap. The result of all of this was an unexpected 2am conclusion about what point and clicks can learn from hidden object adventures. … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

Grab your pals and plug in extra controllers to basketball and brawl in Draymond Green’s Shut Up And Slam Jam Karate Basketball [Itch page], out now. It’s a 2v2 arcade basketball game where, due to a mix-up, a karate demonstration and a charity basketball match are to take place on the same court at the same time. I’m sure you can manage to combine the two. While it does support AI bots, surely it’d be better to slam, junk, dunk, maim, and cripple with your chums? … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Brendan Caldwell)

Here s something to coo at if you like your art done in thousands of tiny squares. Narita Boy [official site] is a game-in-progress where the hero flies a floppy disk as a hoverboard and rides a horse made out of old computers while slashing at red foes with a techno sword. He s stuck inside the computer dimension, you see, in a quest to save it from some red-coloured badthings known as the Stallions. But to understand any of that, you really need to see it in motion, which you can do below. … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Philippa Warr)

forma.8

I don’t know if you remember but a while ago I posted about the lovely little animation touches of Inside. forma.8 [official site] is another game which invites that treatment. It’s a beautiful Metroidvania prospect which uses that sort of flat colour layering that you find in minimalist posters and similar (think WPA posters and the related neo-vintage look you find in Firewatch’s imagery). The first thing I was thinking of pointing to were the colour palettes, some of which are unusual in gaming, but right now there’s just something so pleasing about little animated touches that elevate the world through attention to detail:

… [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Graham Smith)

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time. >

When it was announced that the new Hitman would be released one level at a time, the response was confusion or worry. Now that its first season is complete however, we know that it was a success. More developers should follow suit.

… [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

Square Enix have announced a PC release for hack ‘n’ slash action-RPG Dragon Quest Heroes II [official site], which previously they’d only confirmed for PlayThings. It’s a spin-off from Dragon Quest, taking that RPG’s setting into hack ‘n’ slash action made by Dynasty Warriors developers Omega Force. I believe Dragon Quest Heroes is a bit more RPG-y than most of Omega Force’s games but is still ultimately about mashing through hordes of enemies – which is grand if you like both slashing and those adorable happy slimes. Here, have a look in this new trailer: … [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alec Meer)

I will admit to a certain wateriness in my eyes when I heard the music. The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind was and is, I believe, almost more a state of mind than it is a roleplaying game. A strange and desolate place, built upon a foundation of distrust, it is almost aggressively lonely. As an RPG, the precursor to Oblivion and Skyrim is all over the shop, but that never mattered because it was a place to disappear into. The mist, the mushrooms, the menace. The music. Elder Scrolls games since have been playgrounds first and Other Places second, and I don t know how they can go back now.

Going back is exactly the plan. Morrowind is a standalone expansion-cum-relaunch of The Elder Scrolls Online [official site] (ESO), Bethesda s massively multiplayer spin-off of the series that gave us Skyrim. It’s due for release this June and I’ve taken a look.

… [visit site to read more]

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