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

Monolith founder Jace Hall has been attempting to organise the release of an updated version of the company’s gloriously gory Build engine FPS Blood for some time, as we mentioned last August. At that time, confidence was high: “I certainly will be able to and will get all the support I need from all/any parties that may have legal interest in the game.” Unfortunately, one of the parties involved is Atari and, as you may recall, the gaming world’s own Lazarus recently perished yet again and in its state of pending rebirth has contacted Hall with bad news: “I just got an unusually short, one sentence e-mail from Atari, letting me know that given the current set of circumstances, they are choosing to decline to proceed.”

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

It perhaps goes without saying – although after typing this I realise we said it anyway – that Guild Wars 2 will be busy this year. The updates have begun to materialise with customer-luring intent, and the closest of these is a big old PvP update, with a new map called Spirit Watch, which I assume is the afterlife version of something presented by Chris Packham. There’s a video of that below, and small stash of details over on the ArenaNet site. They explain: “In this map, we combine our established conquest gameplay with intense capture-the-flag gameplay—except instead of a flag, players will battle over the glowing Orb of Ascension!” Woo! No one likes flags, anyway. This is the 21st century, for goodness sakes!

The update appears on the 26th. Video below, of course. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Robert Florence)

Hello youse.

Not every game needs to be perfect. Flaws are a good thing. Some of my favourite films, albums, video games and people are those ones with major flaws. Indeed, with board games, there is a danger that we all slide down the one safety chute, and all end up playing the same things. This is bad and harmful and will not advance board game design at all. Can I rant on this? Let me rant a bit on this. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

Space Combat is all very simple isn’t it? Grab a game pad, pull the trigger, remember there’s no up and down, except when there is, and chocks away, eh? But it’s not necessarily like that. Rogue System developers DCI explain: “Rogue System also gives a nod to both classic and modern hardcore combat flight-sims by introducing fully integrated ship systems and the click-able cockpit to control them. Not only will you have to fly and fight, but you will also have to manage your ship and its functions to get the most out of it at all times.” Yep, that means keeping an eye on more subsystems than a game of FTL, as you can see in the video below. Sounds fancy, and it looks like DCI have made some serious progress with this project, but they’re also aiming for Kickstarter, so that’ll be interesting to watch. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

The “Dance Macabre” Harlequins mod for Soulstorm has, by all accounts, been a long time in the making. Soulstorm was released in 2008, but I understand the mod was actually begun around the time of Winter Assault, way back in 2005, and has seen its fair share on contributors in that time. Anyway, the open beta for the mod is now go, and one of the fine members of that death jester-loving community community has put out a video to celebrate that, which you can see below. (more…)

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

Two contrasting success stories this week. Dreamfall Chapters didn’t need a full week to reach its target and come the morning, the first stretch goal will almost certainly have been reached, adding Mac and Linux support. Unwritten needed almost every second to reach its goal but did cross the finishing line with a tremendous amount of support in its final days. There are several new entries this week, including the astonishingly compelling Enemy, which generates worlds and stories drawn from the history of gaming, incorporating turn-based combat inspired by X-COM. Sometimes I think my dreams coalesce on the internet and become real.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (John Walker)

Obviously concept art, what with this not being on PC graphics.

Halo creators Bungie have announced the platforms for their next game, online shooter Destiny, and PC is not amongst them. With 360 and PS3 versions certain, and next-gen consoles hinted at, it would seem to make a certain degree of sense to release the game on the format most suited to online FPS. But no, because according to Bungie, of mouse and keyboard players, “Nobody plays shooters the way they used to… ’cause nobody wants to.”

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

THIS WEEK: Queer edutainment. Clickless Twine. “As you are paralyzed with pain he punches you so hard that your head explodes.”.>

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Feb 17, 2013
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

Sundays are for waking up tired because you spent so much of the day before playing Planetside 2. Why isn’t everyone in the world playing that awesome game? It’s a mystery no man can understand. While we ponder such strangenesses, we can also look for clues in the writings of the internet. Behold.

  • Over at the Guardian, Keith Stuart asks: Is frustration an essential part of game design? “From here I thought, well, is frustration part of game design or a failure of game design? Certainly, frustration has been there from the beginning. Eurogamer writer Christian Donlan once interviewed Eugene Jarvis, the creator of early and immensely difficult arcade titles like Defender and Robotron – he claimed that he would visit arcades and inspect the coin-op cabinets of his titles, feeling immense pride if they had clearly been kicked or punched.”
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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Nathan Grayson)

Kickstarter has been quite kind to Obsidian. Once upon a time, “Let’s make a spiritual successor to Planescape: Torment, but with no recognizable license and a truckload of old-school trappings” would’ve only gotten them as far as the giant-red-button activated trap door I imagine every major publisher secretly has in their meeting room. But now the band of Black Isle castaways is back on the map after some nasty post-Fallout layoffs and sailing quite smoothly. In recent times, however, Kickstarter’s started to get a bit cranky. High-profile washouts are piling up – Wildman the most visible among them – and the gold in them thar hills seems to be losing its sheen. So then, is it time to book it back to publishers? For his part, Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart thinks it’s all about balance. “These are enjoyable games to make,” he told RPS. “I think it would be great to keep on making them. It helps us build a brand. So that’s where it’s transformative. It’s going to change our business, absolutely. Is it going to change the entirety of our business? No.” Tons more on that, Project Eternity, and a possible South Park delay after the break.>

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