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If you're looking for an expert on immersive sims, speak to Randy Smith.
The 43-year-old American game designer, who lives in Austin, Texas, cut his teeth on the Thief series while working at both Looking Glass and Ion Storm, the two studios considered to have birthed the genre.
After Thief, Smith collaborated with Half-Life 2 art director Viktor Antonov at Arkane, developer of the recent Dishonored and Prey immersive sims, on projects that never came out. Meanwhile, in 2008 Smith, alongside fellow designer David Kalina, founded a new studio called Tiger Style, and designed indie games Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor (2009) and Waking Mars (2012), before a Spider sequel, subtitled Rite of the Shrouded Moon, hit Steam in 2015. But unlike the first Spider game and Waking Mars, Rite of the Shrouded Moon flopped.
There may be spoilers for the Dishonored series of games ahead.
"The Void is unspeakable. It is infinite and it is nowhere, ever-changing and perpetual. There are more things in the endless black Void, Kirin Jindosh, than are dreamt of in your natural philosophy" (Letter from Delilah). Despite the best efforts of natural philosophers, the world of Dishonored is defined by occult, unknown influences. Here, we performed dark magicks, battled witches, conversed with spirits, and even traversed the distance in-between worlds during our vendetta-fueled travels through Dunwall and Karnaca.
Any inquiry into the metaphysics of Dishonored stands and falls by the Void, that shadowy realm that is the source of all magic, witchcraft and arcane knowledge. Even the Outsider, who appears as an ancient god that grants his arcane mark to the player, ultimately derives his powers from the Void, not the other way around. But the Void is an elusive place that doesn't give up its secrets readily, and we as players don't understand it any better than the seekers of Gristol or Serkonos who struggle to catch so much as a glimpse of it. So, what exactly is the Void, or rather, how should we think about it to make sense of it?
Raphael Colantonio, the founder and president of Arkane Studios and creative director of recent fuzzy alien basher Prey, has stepped down from the studio after 18 years. It is time for me to step out to spend some time with my son, he wrote in a statement, and reflect on what is important to me and my future. Colantonio was also the co-creative director on Dishonored, and the man who once referred to us grubby journalists as press sneak fucks . … [visit site to read more]
There will be many ways to play Dishonored 2 [official site], rewarding players for stealth and more brazen maneuvers both. We got a glimpse of some of Corvo’s more aggressive skills at QuakeCon. Now, with Gamescom festivities well underway, Arkane gives us a glimpse at what empress Emily Kaldwin has up her sleeve, and she is easily just as vicious. Take a look!
During one decade in the late eighteenth century, one gang was reportedly responsible for around 80% of bank robberies in America. That gang was led by George Leonidas Leslie, an architect and a criminal genius. He utilised his knowledge of buildings and their secret ways to break them down piece by piece, building scale models of targets, and replicas of their safes and vaults, planning for years. Like many master burglars, he could look at an exterior and understand the interior it hid.
Bethesda’s E3 showcase wrapped up this evening (LA time) and I was there, in an enormous hangar, as new things were announced (Prey! Quake!) and more details of the games we’ve already played or heard about were released. The pick of the crop was Dishonored 2 [official site], which had that rarest of things: an E3 showing that involved an actual dev walkthrough of a mission and the new character abilities. Beats even the shiniest of trailers. You can see a trailer below, captured in-game, along with thoughts on the wonderful time-twisting mechanic.
A couple of weeks ago I was teasing splendid Kotaku writer Jason Schreier after he tweeted describing Dishonored as “still underrated.” Underrated?! The PC version has a Metacritic rating of 91! There s only one score (or rating , you might say) under 8/10, and that review is silly. This is one of the most highly rated games ever!
Since I ve started replaying it, once again attempting to rescue the young empress from an evil regime, I keep thinking to myself, Man, this game was underrated. Sorry Jason.>
As much as PC gaming hardware has changed and improved over the years, there’s always been one constant: the limitations of disk space. Granted, it’s far cheaper and easier (no more absurdly tiny Master/Slave toggles) than it used to be to grab a new hard drive, but the rise of ever-faster but more expensive SSDs set things back a bit in that regard. With new mainstream games regularly asking for as much as 30 Gigabytes I remain, as I always have, in a battle for space. Which means I’m constantly uninstalling half-finished stuff in order to make space for the next big thing. Sometimes it’s heartbreaking. But there’s a line. There are a few games I can never uninstall, because it would hurt too much. Granted, they change a little over the years – new ones come in, old ones finally, finally lose their lustre (or I give up entirely on the belief that I will ever go back), but here’s how that list of inviolable treasures looks right now.
Oh boy, am I conflicted. Fallout 4 s main plotline requires that I do this thing> and as far as things> go, it s a pretty major thing> and a major thing> that you d expect someone with the maternal instinct of my character Halle to crack on with straight away. The trouble is, rather than doing this major thing>, for at least an hour now, she, and when I say she , I mean I , have been poking around Sanctuary, scrapping anything that glows yellow so I can salvage enough materials to build a house big enough for me and my Minutemen companions. I had largely avoided Bethesda s drip-feed of Fallout 4 pre-publicity but when I somehow found out that the game had settlement building, I think I might have involuntarily passed a little wind in joyous anticipation.
That’s because I ve felt a similar rosy inner glow while hanging around other hubs and houses in many other games I ve played. I think it s easy to underestimate the value of having a home base option, especially in open world games where there is a free-roaming element, but it’s a part of why I love certain games.