Aussie writer Daniel Hindes, who for a while has run a niche site called Sneaky Bastards, wants to take the idea of discussing stealth games to a more tangible format. Hence, Sneaky Bastards, the magazine.
Promising that the magazine will feature 100% new content (as in, nothing that's been on the site before), the first issue also has a stunning front cover courtesy of British artist AJ Hately, who we've featured here before.
It's hoped that the print run can be a way of "producing more of a substantial, long-form, long-lasting analysis and exploration of stealth gaming in a format that this kind of material is designed to be read and consumed in."
You can check out more, and contribute, below. Which you should. The internet is a wonderful place to read about cats and fake trailers, but this kind of in-depth discussion about such a dedicated topic is perfect for dead trees between your fingers.
Sneaky Bastards [Kickstarter]
I don’t know who the head of Bethesda is. I’ll assume it’s John Bethesda Softworks. Hello, Mr Bethesda Softworks! Mind if I call you John? Nope. Grand. I have an idea for you: crowd-source the content for next Elder Scrolls. Calm down, John. Stop throwing things and hear me out. I know your games are lorey love letters to the world you created with Adrian Elder Scrolls, but things are moving on. Fans of games don’t need developers, just tools and assets to make their own game. You could spend all your time churning out huts and swords, and leave it to the people to make something from it. I have proof: this Skyrim mod Interesting NPCs adds over 100 new NPCS to the game, with over 90 of them voiced by actors. (more…)
A new Fallout thing is happening. Erik Todd Dellums, voice of Three Dog from Fallout 3 (pictured) recently proclaimed that "there may be more of the Dog coming!" While noting the cruelty of the tease, he added that he was "given permission to release that tease," whatever that means.
The former seems more likely than the latter, if you ask us. If Fallout 4 is impending, it would make good on producer Todd Howard's goal of seeing a new entry in the franchise "before 2018."
You know what the Mojave desert was missing? My Little Pony, of course. My Little Pony buddies, to be precise. Here's a mod by Kuroitsune and Riven1978 on New Vegas Nexus that allows you to have the MLP protagonists as your companions. Not all ponies are included—for now, there's only Luna, Celestia, Twilight, Fluttershy, Applejack, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Ditzy/Derpy and a few others. Perhaps the best part about this is that the ponies come with specific perks.
Littlepip - Stable 2 - Whenever Littlepip is your Pony Companion, you will receive +10 points to Science, Medicine, and Repair and 1 point to Charisma, at a cost of 1 point of Agility and Strength, and -5 to Guns, Melee Weapons, and Unarmed Weapons.
Luna - Mare of the Moon - During the night as long as Luna is your Pony Companion, you will slowly regenerate health. Luna will also gain a 20% combat effectiveness.
Celestia - Mare of the Sun - During the day as long as Celestia is your Pony Companion, you will receive 30 points to Energy Weapons, at a cost of 10 to all of your other offensive skills. Celestia also gains a 20% damage potential.
BonBon - Friendship Is Magic - When Bon Bon's health gets below 30%, Lyra will appear to help out in the battle.
Lyra - Friendship Is Magic - When Lyra's health gets below 30%, Bon Bon will appear to help out in the battle.
Twilight - Studious - Twilight's intelligence is par none. While she is your Pony Companion, your accuracy, spread, and critical chance improve by 20%.
Fluttershy - All Creatures Great and Small - While Fluttershy is your Pony Companion, every creature in the Mojave is your friend, at the cost of your human relationships.
AppleJack - Apple Cider - While Applejack is your Pony Companion, she will give you Apple Cider every time you give her 2 Apples.
Rarity - Rarity & Charity - While Rarity is your Pony Companion, you will find more caps or hard to find weapons on fallen foes only she kills.
Rainbow Dash - Speedy Arrival - While Rainbow Dash is your Pony Companion, you will be 10% faster at everything you do, at the cost of 30lbs of your total carry weight.
Pinkie Pie - Party Time! - While Pinkie Pie is your Pony Companion, you will find more chems on your fallen enemies. But you will be 20% more likely to become addicted to chems.
Derpy - Muffins! - While Derpy is your Pony Companion, she will give you 3 Muffins every time you use a campfire once a day.
Trixie - Trixie's Greatness - While Trixie is your Pony Companion, you gain +10 to all of your skills that are under 50 skill points.
Vinyl Scratch - Bass Cannon - Whenever Vinyl Scratch is your Pony Companion, any explosive based weapon you use will have three times the power, at a cost of -20 of your sneak skill.
You can download it here, though I'm a little sad that they walk upright. I mean, that kind of makes it more hilarious, but still!
My Little Pony Follower [New Vegas]
Something tells me the chances of us seeing officially licensed Dishonored LEGO are slim. Rats, murder, prostitutes... I don't think it's quite LEGO's thing. But hey, where LEGO misses an opportunity, custom builders are always there to come through with the goods.
Nathan Proudlove built this Dishonored "Tall Boy" walker, a unit in the game that spends its time trying to kill you while at the same time trying to not trip over the slightest bit of debris.
This, though, will just spend all of its time sitting on a shelf. Safer for everyone, really!
You don't realize just how good a gaming year it's been until you look back at all of the games you actually played. From physics puzzlers to ninja simulators, 2012's library was full of interesting, creative, unique experiences.
I played a lot of games last year. A few were bad. Most were good. Some were great. Those are the ones I'll remember: the games that stood out from the pack in memorable ways. So here are my ten favorite games of 2012. Presented in no particular order:
My personal game of the year, Virtue's Last Reward kept me up for many hours, many nights in a row. Though some—like Kotaku boss Stephen Totilo—have found the game's opaque puzzles and overwrought dialogue to be rather tedious, I enjoyed every moment of Aksys's chilling visual novel.
A wonderfully well-written role-playing game with pleasant British voice acting and combat that taught me how to enjoy running around and smashing the A button, The Last Story (not to be confused with Hironobu Sakaguchi's other work, Final Fantasy) is the year's best JRPG—if not the generation's.
I've written a lot about how Dishonored is a stellar experience, but really, all that matters is the Blink spell. There are few abilities in a video game as satisfying, as empowering, as totally game-breaking as an ability that you can use to teleport anywhere at any time. The world and art direction are just dismally gorgeous icing on the delicious Blink cake.
Let me sum up my feelings toward Persona 4 with an anecdote. A few nights ago, I was fighting one of the game's final bosses. After a solid 45 minutes of battling, I had taken him down to something like 10% health. I was following the same patterns: buff, attack, heal, rinse, repeat. I was ready for it to be over.
He uses one attack. Bam. My main character instantly dies. Game over. Time to start again.
If I was playing any other game, I might have quit and moved onto something else at this point. Instead, I went and killed monsters for an hour to make my characters stronger. Persona 4 is the worst. (Also the best.)
Rhythm games are fun, Final Fantasy music is fantastic, and there's something really special about a game that combines the two. Even when you're repeating the same songs ad infinitum, it's hard not to love the addictive, frenetic tapping of Theatrhythm. The name, on the other hand, is very easy not to love.
I enjoyed every minute of this first-person puzzler, wonky physics aside. I wish the ending had been more satisfying, but the journey was totally worth it.
Funny that the year's best Diablo game wasn't even called Diablo.
Forget the snappy controls and smart interface; the best part of Mark of the Ninja is that every stage feels like a puzzle with multiple solutions. Would you like to choke out that guard from behind or throw a smoke bomb so you can get past him without being seen? Ninja is a smart, tight, remarkably enjoyable game.
It's easy to complain about the "annualization" of video games—how companies like to milk a series cow for yearly sequels until the teat has run way too dry. But when it comes to Layton, I say bring it on: the professor's charming puzzle adventures just seem to get better and better every year.
Because shooting down pirates, running into the forest, finding myself face to face with a giant tiger, getting the hell out of dodge, finding a hang-glider, and using it to soar across the skies to safety was one of my most enjoyable gaming experiences in 2012.