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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Nathan Grayson)

i want to go to there

Oh Skywind, let me count the ways. For those not in the know, Skywind is a Skyrim mod that aims to transplant the entirety of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (aka, the best Elder Scrolls) into Skyrim’s more modern engine while maintaining the former’s gorgeously bizarre sense of style. Locations, NPCs, quests, the mudcrab merchant who essentially functioned as my best friend in middle school – everything’s going in. It’s an absurdly colossal undertaking, and yet unlike just about every other total conversion mod out there, it’s actually going places>. INCREDIBLY NOSTALGIA-PROVOKING video of Morrowind’s re-envisioned first areas below.

… [visit site to read more]

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Duncan Harris)

This is the latest in the series of articles about the art technology of games, in collaboration with the particularly handsome Dead End Thrills.>

With the galaxy’s biggest sci-fi movies using ever more effects houses and artists, it can be hard to pinpoint today’s Ralph McQuarries and Ron Cobbs. They’re out there, though, often known more by work than name. At the top of the pile is Stephan Martiniere, one of those illustrators and art directors whose work is so envied by just about any sci-fi project going that’s he levelled up to ‘Visionary’. Put simply, people want the stuff in his head on their books, in their movies, at their theme parks, and, as luck would have it, in their games.

Examples? In movies, Martiniere’s applied his signature style (eye-popping ‘Golden Age’ snapshots of civilisations in overdrive) to the worlds of I, Robot, Tron: Legacy, Star Wars Episodes II and III, Star Trek, The Fifth Element, the Total Recall remake, 300: Rise Of An Empire, Guardians Of The Galaxy and The Avengers: Age Of Ultron. *and breathe…* … [visit site to read more]

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

Cor, look, a place.

It was only December that Craig last came scampering along on the back of a Silt Strider, bouncily telling us all about Skywind, a mod project to port the world, creatures and mechanics of Morrowind to Skyrim’s fancier engine. Now there’s a new trailer showing features for the next update, and a thought occurs: maybe they’re going to pull this off.>

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Duncan Harris)

This is the latest in a series of articles about the art technology of games, in collaboration with the particularly handsome Dead End Thrills.>

An occupational risk of Christmas is that the great mead (Jaffa Cakes) hall of my in-laws’ living room will inspire me to reinstall Skyrim, post a few fancy screenshots, and sure enough get a few emails asking for some mythical mod guide. Then comes the abuse: “He doesn’t want anyone to have his secret sauce!” Or: “His Skyrim doesn’t look like that – *snort* – those are Photoshopped.” Only they don t capitalise Photoshop because they didn t have to sit through that> publishing meeting, lucky old them.

They’re almost right about one thing: my Skyrim doesn’t look like that. Likewise, when someone asks me what English weather is like, I don t answer: It s like that evening drive between Dorset and Wiltshire when a torrential downpour gave way to just the best> sunshine that lit up the faces of distant historic buildings and cast painterly shadows across dale and field. What I tell them is that, nine times out of ten, it s shit. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Nathan Grayson)

What... what on Earth?

[Droning train whistle sounds]

What’s that?

[The sound of an engine chugging, whirring as though fueled by the souls of a thousand blood-puking damned]

No. No, no, no, no, no, no. This can’t be happening. This cannot> be happening. Quick, stay behind me, and whatever you do, DON’T LOOK DIRECTLY INTO ITS–

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Craig Pearson)

Skywind is a mod that brings Morrowind into the Skyrim engine. It’s like someone at Bethesda took the Morrowind and Skyrim design documents and riffle shuffled them as a party trick, and then forgot to unshuffle them. Somehow–probably through a montage–those files ended up with modders. A less tired Craig would probably recount that montage, but that show-off wasn’t up late playing Starbound and eating takeaway, so you just get facts and trailers. The last time I reported on Skywind, it was just an empty world. You could run around, but you could not do anything, but more recent updates have begun the task of integrating people, monsters, and quests. Which means it might be worth installing. There’s a wee video to demonstrate some of that work. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Craig Pearson)

Ladies and Gentlemen, it's Tom Cruise!According to international law, I am not allowed to post the video I made playing of myself playing this Skyrim Mod, which changes the fighting music into Danger Zone by Kenny Loggins. Now, I’ll admit there hundreds of reasons and at least three court orders that should prevent me from going anywhere near recording equipment, but I am sad that one of them is “A man in his pants enjoying a game and wants you to share it with the world.” It seems like my happiness, and the happiness others would get from it, should override petty rules and regulations, particularly when it involves Skyrim and the Top Gun soundtrack. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Nathan Grayson)

John Carmack has officially packed his bags and taken a rocket car over to Oculus Rift, now his sole employer until he decides he wants to become the world’s foremost expert on Hyperloops or something. So what better way to celebrate/commiserate than by playing maybe the last game he’ll ever see to completion? Answer: there is no better way. If you are doing anything else, John Carmack will probably never be your friend or spend upwards of five hours giving you breathless life advice. Fortunately, RAGE is free on Steam this weekend. Details below.

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

There are a lot of words being written about the new consoles this week but when I spoke to Warren Spector a few days ago, he was clear about where his future lies: “I think all the interesting stuff is happening on PC now… Assuming I make more games, which I intend to do, PC and Mac are going to be my targets.”

It’s good to hear. We spoke at the Bradford Animation Festival and covered a wide range of topics, from his theories of design and pioneering role in PC gaming to thoughts on the current state of the industry. In this first part of our conversation, there’s insight into how Spector see his own legacy and the work of his former colleagues, and how frustrations with Thief’s difficulty inspired the player empowerment of Deus Ex.>

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

Path of Shadows is an upcoming non-commercial student project in which the player character can teleport between shadows. As seen in the prototype video below, it resembles an over-the-shoulder Mark of the Ninja, with a protagonist who is wearing a magical glyph version of Isaac Clarke’s RIG read-out. Limiting the teleportation ability to shadowy areas suggests prescribed paths through levels, a puzzler’s approach to stealth. As is often the case, the sneaky protagonist feels compelled to creep through temples, silently murdering guards. A goddess instructs, “do not bother remembering anything”, which sounds exactly like the sort of thing that somebody would say if they’d killed you and taken command of your soul in the recent past so they could make you smash up a rival deity’s temple.

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