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Never before in the history of mankind have so many PC display options emerged in such a short space of time. At least, that’s the way it feels right now and in the time-honoured journalistic tradition I’m certainly not going to let fact checking get in the way of a mediocre narrative. It’s, er, monitormageddon people! In all seriousness, it’s enough to keep up with all the 120Hz, G-Sync, FreeSync and 4K nonsense. But now the mix of panel sizes, types and resolutions is beginning to spin out of control. I’m rapidly approaching the point where I haven’t a clue what I would personally plump for. Things will settle down in the next 18 months or so as the sweet spot emerges, no doubt. But that’s no help in the here and now. If you’re in the monitor market today, what the devil are you supposed to do? … [visit site to read more]
Aegis Defenders is the latest game to prove that you can pretty much just roll a pair of dice to determine two genres to slam together. The tower defense platformer is absolutely gorgeous, set on a post-ruination Earth ruled by a few remaining AIs. Most technology is viewed as dark magic so main characters Bart and his granddaughter Clu naturally have a fascination and need for it. They’re ‘Ruinhunters’ attempting to save their village, but won’t be able to without an ancient artifact (and $65,000 from the generous public). It’s made by the extraordinarily-named GUTS Department and you can see their pitch video plus thoughts on a preview demo below.
The Room, BAFTA winning mobile puzzling mega-hit, has at last reached the PC in HD glory. I’ve slid my bottom into the slot on my chair, pressed the button that popped up on my mouse, and rotated my head until it faces the screen, which caused a mechanical whirring sound and the revealing of wot I think:>
Logic can be dangerous. Minecraft players have built everything from room-sized games of Pong to autocannons with its redstone logic circuits, and that’s a relatively peaceful game. If you combined logic circuits with, say, the prison-industrial complex, I dread to imagine what dehumanising mechanisms might be built around inmates. So let’s see what happens now Prison Architect has done just that.
It’s fine, though. Prison Architect isn’t quite so freeform, and Introversion imagine the new automation and logic tools will be used for things like remote door control systems and sharing clock signals. Which does almost sound like a challenge.
I was one of the first to walk to the Path of Exile but one of the last to submit a complete traveller’s guide. Of course, the term ‘complete’ is meaningless when developers insist on releasing new (free) content for their (free) games. Lonely Planet guide writers don’t have this problem – it’s not as if a country would suddenly expand its borders to bring in new attractions, resources and skillsets. Forsaken Masters adds NPCs who provide players with missions in exchange for training, as well as customisable hideouts.
In the way that mood cycles can revolve around Christmas or birthdays, do diehard game fans slip into emotional rhythms around marketing cycles? Do Call of Duty fans start to feel excited around the start of May, fidgeting and laughing more than usual, expecting the announcement of the next annualised sequel? Is E3 why I grow increasingly angry and desperate to flee to a forest over May?
Late July brings announcements from Codemasters of their next Formula 1 race ‘em up, which is why you may have been anxiously checking your phone and inbox. But as well as F1 2014, today they announced another game too. One breaking the rhythm. A “next-gen” F1 game is coming earlier than usual next year. What does this mean? And how do you feel?
It’s easy to think that simulation and sports game are advancing along a straight line of progress, each sequel or yearly iteration delivering a game with better physics models, more polygons, and all towards some objective perfection. To this strawman that exists within my brain I say: not true! As would have been interestingly demonstrated by Codemasters releasing Colin McRae Rally 2.0 on Steam today. The game, a precursor to the modern Dirt series, was originally released in 2000. It was good.
Except that’s not what has happened here. This game, called simply Colin McRae Rally, is only “based on” that old game. Instead this is the PC release of last year’s mobile version, which used tracks, cars and audio from the older games but was otherwise its own thing. Is that misleading? It certainly confused me for a bit.
LA Cops contains more comedy moustaches per screen than the Beastie Boys’ Sabotage video and Anchorman put together. It’s a celebration of facial furniture, with Syndicate-inspired shooting in between bouts of Handsome Cop Admiration. As well as moustaches, the game includes destructible scenery and a buddy system that allows a single player to control a two-cop team, implementing tactics to lure bad guys onto the
disco killing floor. The Early Access version, which is available now, contains a single four scene level (taken from the planned eight levels, with a total of twenty scenes). Each of the available cops has a story to tell, a favoured ‘stache shampoo and attributes to upgrade.
With The International fading into memory like so many forgotten creeps, MOBA-neutrals such as myself look forward to their next dose of hype. Riot will be the providers, with the League of Legends World Championship kicking off in September and the Grand Final on October 19th. In preperation for their season finale, Riot’s latest patch focuses on ‘strategic diversity’ within the game, ensuring enough characters are viable come the big day. They’re also introducing a new one, League’s 120th champion, Gnar.
Ah, crossovers! Characters and universes colliding to settle scores or combine powers and, not for the first time, indie game mascots are at it too. Brightside Games are bringing indie characters together to solve puzzles and assist an accidentally cyberspaced cat in their platformer Team Indie. It uses the Braid/Super Time Force single-player co-op method, where characters combine their ‘unique skills’ to assist each other to the exit. Trailer and thoughts on a preview build below.