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I don’t wish to sound callous but: if you find someone imprisoned inside a neutron star, leave them there. They’re probably in there for a very good reason. And apparently they’re powerful enough to survive being inside a neutron star. Leave well enough alone. But a spacefool like you will charge right in, I know, eager to complete the new quest which has arrived in Endless Space 2 [official site] with the launch of its ‘Stellar Prisoner’ update. Yup, Amplitude’s space strategy game left early access in May (it’s great, by the way) but updates are still rolling. … [visit site to read more]
Subnautica‘s [official site] Voice of the Deep update might be the thing that tips me over into playing that game for hours again and properly exploring the narrative/lore side of things. I’d set the game aside to come back to after early access BUT! Tom Jubert (who did narrative work on The Talos Principle and The Swapper and now Subnautica) noted on Twitter: “Today is the day that Subnautic gets its endgame! Finally, something awaits you at the bottom of the ocean.”
THAT SOMETHING HAS ENORMOUS TENTACLES. I’m so into this. … [visit site to read more]
Welcome back to Unknown Pleasures, wherein we pick 10 of the best lower-profile new videogames released on Steam over the past seven days. Can’t decide what to play next? Unknown Pleasures is there for you, through thick and thin, through good times and bad, through weeks when only hidden object games are released and weeks like this, where there’s a wild variety of new delights.
This time: refugee simulation, drowned cyberpunk, hyper-Breakout and being stalked by Henry VIII. … [visit site to read more]
Old Man’s Journey [official site] caught my attention before release entirely on the strength of its aesthetic. It reminded me of board game illustrations, of children’s books, of a particular Courbet painting, and of colour palettes remembered from trips to the sun-baked south of France. The game itself offered a touching tale told through environment and memory as an elderly man strapped on his rucksack and headed off.
The landscapes you encounter are both the setting for the game and the game itself because you play by raising and lowering the layers of scenery. Where the curves of two layers intersect the old man can hop between them, dodging obstacles and navigating around errant sheep. I sat down with Clemens Scott, the game’s art director, earlier this year to find out more about how he made the hillscapes work:
Endless Space 2 s races are a fascinating bunch who wouldn t seem out of place in a Mos Eisley cantina, but maybe you ve had enough of them. Or perhaps you want your next galaxy to be full of new aliens to pal around with. Good news, then, because buried in the game setup menu is an option to create new factions. In an effort to get to grips with the editor and put together this guide, I ve been working on my own: the Oak Blokes. … [visit site to read more]
Overwatch‘s [official site] moon arena, Horizon Lunar Colony is now live. The assault map’s origin story is all about exploration and science and all of that kerfuffle which sounds so grand and optimistic. Nowadays (i.e. in the future-present of Blizzard’s FPS-iverse) it is a contested set of facilities where heroes mangle one another with lasers.
On the negative side that feels less grand and optimistic. On the positive side, it means that universe has the technology to send people to the moon all the time. … [visit site to read more]
It’s time to start a strict training routine of fingertip pushups: Cook, Serve, Delicious! 2!! [official site] is coming. Developers Vertigo Gaming today announced a release date of August 24th for their follow-up to the fun and unexpectedly really, really intense game about cooking in your own little restaurant. They’ve also confirmed that cooperative local multiplayer will return in CSD!2!!, but this time as a fully thought-through mode rather than something added as an experiment. All of this sounds great, aside from the fact that my fingers haven’t recovered from E3 week so I’m already a week behind in my training to build strength and speed for the game’s intense key-tapping. … [visit site to read more]
Splendid zombie apocalypse road trip action-RPG Death Road to Canada [official site] recently launched another hefty update, and another one is soon to follow. Friday’s update was mostly systemic, introducing a new progression system to unlock perks, traits, and persistent bonuses. A magical gnome is involved. After this, developers Rocketcat Games have plans for a big content update bringing everything from hats to Swole Mountain. Friday’s update did sneak in a little more content, mind, including new events and characters including a diddy kaiju and, ah, Bort up there. … [visit site to read more]
Lizards riding dinosaurs. Almighty spells crackling through the sky. A dragon swoops down from above and collides with a stegadon as elves are torn apart and consumed by carnosaurs at its feet. Total War: Warhammer 2 [official site] brings even more spectacle to the battlefield, particularly with its lizardmen armies, but the campaign is looking like the most exciting part of the game.
Strategy games have a habit of petering out as you move toward the endgame. Anyone who’s played Civ (including Civ V designer Jon Shafer) knows the tedium of pushing end turn to watch the numbers grow, as your inevitable crawl toward victory or defeat plays out in turn-based slow motion. That’s partly because so many victory conditions involve watching the correct resource pile up in sufficient quantity, or painting the entire map in a certain colour. Discovery is a thing of the past, diplomacy has run its course, and there is nothing new under the sun. Creative Assembly are looking to change that.