Victor Vran Review
Our forum member Greywolf00 checked out Victor Vran for us
» Continue reading the article...
Expeditions: Viking Preview
Aries100 visited The Nordic Game Convention in Malmö to check out Expeditions: Viking
» Read the article
For the most part
Really don't know
Maybe a bit
Age of Decadence - Release in October by HiddenX
Mooncrest - Kickstarter Campaign Launched by HiddenX
Witcher 3 - Economy was saved by polynomial least squares @ Ars Technica by HiddenX
RPG Codex - Top 74 RPG List: Boxed Edition by lackblogger
Risen 3: Titan Lords - Enhanced Edition Teaser by rikus
Wednesday - July 29, 2015
XCOM 2 - The Chryssalid @ Gamespot
Kevin VanOrd (Gamespot) asked XCOM 2 lead producer Garth DeAngelis some questions about the Chryssalid:
It came from outer space.
If you’ve played an XCOM game in the past, then you know the Chryssalid, the most frightening-looking alien the games depict. In XCOM 2's multiplayer, you will get the chance to command one of these extraterrestrial meanies for yourself, but most of the time, you will face a chryssalid as an opponent. Developer Firaxis hopes to make this gruesome unit an even more intimidating force in the upcoming strategy sequel, and lead producer Garth DeAngelis recently divulged how the team is doing just that.
GAMESPOT: So the chryssalid returns, but outside of multiplayer, there's no chance of somehow recruiting one to join the XCOM forces, I presume?
DEANGELIS: The chryssalid is very much still one of the alien occupiers of Earth. They are against XCOM. They will never become a part of your army.
We had to have them come back. They've been a staple of XCOM, harkening back to the original UFO defense. A couple of decades have taken place since you lost in Enemy Unknown. A lot of the enemies have evolved. Now, the chryssalid, they're a little bit too crazy of a species to integrate human DNA into them, but they have evolved. They've received some upgrades. What they did in Enemy Unknown, is they implanted XCOM with something that would then breed another chryssalid out of them, if you remember. It was a pretty terrifying sequence. Design said, "How can we make this crazier?" [...]
XCOM 2SP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Tuesday - July 28, 2015
King's Quest - First Chapter Released
Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember was released today:
An aging King Graham reflects on a life of adventure with his granddaughter, Gwendolyn, taking players back to his teen years and his quest to become a knight of Daventry in King Edward’s royal guard. Discover a wondrous world full of whimsical characters, charming puzzles and perilous dangers in this fun and enchanting coming of age story.
King's QuestSP/MP: Single-player
InSomnia - Combat System Elements
In Kickstarter Update #35 we get some info about the elements of the InSomnia combat system:
Though combat will run in real time mode you will have an opportunity to use a feature generally known as a "tactical pause". It will give you some time to think, analyze the current situation, make up your mind with commands and use your resources wisely.
However you won't be able to do just everything at once using this little helper - the number of actions you can perform will be directly connected with the amount of action points you have. APs can be spent to immediately heal your character and his team with meds, for energy shields activation, accessing your inventory etc.
It will take some time to restore your action points so you won't be able to use tactical pause non-stop. The maximum amount of APs of your character will depend on his parameters and traits.
Sure, you will be able to switch between your NPCs and give them orders even without ever using the pausing mechanism. This way however you should be ready to feel the consequences of someone firing right in your face while you are trying to heal. Ouch!
Any conflict can cause all kinds of outcomes that might make your character suffer in different ways:
Exhaustion - this penalty goes active whenever endurance indicator of your character drops to zero. This status has a temporary influence on the following things:
- the damage you do to others is decreased
- the accuracy of your long-range weaponry drops
- you can't sprint
Disorientation - whenever you get hit during the close combat your character might feel some additional negative effects of this damage. While this status is active your fire rate drops, so the best idea is to deal with anyone who is close to you before aiming at distant enemies.
The other interesting thing that might happen to your character while being hurt is interruption which will interrupt (well wasn't that obvious) your current action like using healing items, taking aimed shots etc. It can be ignored if your durability parameter is developed enough. However chances to do that decrease if the damage is too high.
Critical condition - if your character's health drops too low you will lose ability to perform any actions with his help at all as he will be in coma. To fix that you'll need another NPC with a proper item in his inventory.
You will be pleased to know that your enemies will also experience critical conditions... and you will be able to "finish" them. The execution animation depends on the weapon you are currently equipped with.
Other combat aspects
There is a list of things that you won't be able to do while fighting, including the following:
- traveling between locations and visiting global map
- saving your game progress
- talking and performing barter
- building a camp
All these activities will be available for you again after you kill all enemies around. The other alternative is try to hide from your foes and stay out of their sight at least for some time.
Hopefully this was an enjoyable read, as we really enjoyed to prepare this update for you. Until next time!
InSomniaSP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
King of Dragon PassSP/MP: Single-player
Kyn - Released
Kyn released today:
Introducing Tangrin Entertainment, an indie team of just two developers based in the Netherlands. Over the last 2 years they have created Kyn, an action packed role playing strategy game that delivers over 20 hours of gameplay across a unique Viking inspired mythological world with plenty of landscapes to explore, puzzles to solve and enemies to defeat. Outsmart the enemy in combat with up to 6 warriors using the unique time manipulation feature. Collect loot and use the crafting system to upgrade your motley crew with more powerful weapons and armor. Kyn is a true adventurer’s adventure game!
- A Magical Viking World Brought to Life: Unlock the mysteries of the vast world of KYN as you explore ancient ruins, lush landscapes and snowy mountains filled with intricate puzzles and plenty of danger! Fight against a variety of intelligent enemies and use your skill and cunning to take out powerful boss enemies!
- A Hybrid Tactical RPG Meets Hack-n-Slash: This is real time action in a fantastical RPG setting. You will need to leverage the environment to create traps, defend areas or build up special attacks. When tactics are needed, utilize the slow motion feature, where time slows to almost zero and you can direct your heroes to an area and assign them a task to out flank, out smart and defeat your enemies!
- An RPG Party with up to Six Playable Characters: Build that classic RPG dungeon crawling group with our motely group of heroes. Each warrior can be outfitted with different equipment and specialized abilities to meet your needs. Allocating points in mind, body, control will build characters that fit your style or meet the challenges of the puzzles you will soon face.
- A Deep Crafting and Loot System: Collect hundreds of items. Combine over 100 different elemental materials in a unique crafting system designed to help you get more powerful weapons and armor.
In a world where Viking mythology collides with magic, explore the world of KYN in a fast paced role playing strategy game that combines party based combat with exploration and progression.
KynSP/MP: Single + MP
Project: Gorgon - A Fluent First Look Video
In this 39-minute video, I take a look at an early alpha version of the Kickstarter MMORPG, Project: Gorgon! The video is a bit long and I don't use a script, so feel free to grab some popcorn and watch the fun unfold!
The game is an MMORPG in the vein of early MMORPGs, such as Asheron's Call and Everquest 1 & 2.
Hey everyone! In this exciting video I take a look at the upcoming MMORPG, Project: Gorgon.
Okay, you read that it's an MMO and want to stop reading. Well, don't! This is a true sandbox/open-world MMO that we haven't seen since the likes of Asheron's Call many years back! This is not your typical WoW clone or anything even close to that. This is a true explorer's dream game, so watch the video and see how unique and fantastic this fascinating MMORPG really is!
If you'd like to support their Kickstarter to make this game even better, you can go here and support them! - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/projectgorgon/project-gorgon-pc-mmo
You can also join the forums and find more information about their game here - http://projectgorgon.com/
Please support them! Check out the game yourself and see if this is something you would like. =)
Project: GorgonSP/MP: Massive
Release: In development
Hand of Fate - Review @ Ninja Blues
A Hand of Fate review in a 'let's play' style at Ninja Blues:
Luckily, functionally-alright-if-sloppy-combat isn’t the only thing Hand Of Fate has to offer. I find that what drew me in wasn’t so much the brawling, it was the storytelling.
What makes Hand Of Fate’s narrative particularly neat is that it’s multi-layered. On the surface, the story that is going on is the ‘duel’ between you and the Nameless Card Master. The Card Master (who does all the talking) makes frequent references to the ‘stake’ and ‘the cost of losing’, and guesses at your reasons for playing the game. The surface narrative is that of a man gambling away something important — His soul? Nah, that seems too cliché — for the promise of undefined power. The Card Master, on his end, has a history of his own: he was a player of this game before he was a dealer, and the game is as it is now thanks to him — but not only him.
But beneath the surface of this ruling narrative, the cards themselves tell stories of their own. It’s outright mentioned several times that these cards are drawn from ‘your’ memories, that they represent significant events and places in your life that you are revisiting through the medium of the game. And Hand Of Fate cleverly handles these mini-stories, drawing them out over multiple cards and multiple play sessions by way of its deckbuilding and token mechanics.
Hand of FateSP/MP: Single-player
Genre: Card-Based RPG
Fallout 4 - Base Customization @ Gamespot
Gamespot asked Pete Hines about base customization in Fallout 4:
Fallout 4 Base Customization Will Have More Options Than Skyrim
Want to build a spaceship? You can do that.
At E3, developer Bethesda announced that Fallout 4 would have places in its world for players to build bases. Now, Marketing VP Pete Hines has revealed to GameSpot a little more about the extent of this creator and a level of customization available to players.
In an interview at Quakecon, Hines told us that the base creator isn't limited to pre-determined frameworks for buildings. Rather, players will be given the ability to decide many different aspects of their buildings. Hines specifically referenced the homes players can own in Skyrim - although there are small choices in customization, most of the buildings were set and unchangeable. Hines explained that Fallout 4 gives you much more control over your base than Skyrim does.
"It's not just, 'Hey, here's Breezehome [one of the houses in Skyrim],' where we just picked a house, and you can buy it, and you can go to somebody and say, 'Here's this much gold, and put this thing into my house.' [In Fallout 4] it's, 'Now I'm building it, I'm actually building the house, I'm building the wall, I'm placing the door, I made the table, I made the mattress.' It's that sense of making your own way in the world and defining, 'Who am I and where do I live and what's my story in this world?'"
He went on to say that building locations are limited, but there are a lot of options for building within those spaces. "There are preset locations around the world where you can [build]," Hines explained. "You can definitely build up... [In one demo] there's a radio tower, and the developer that built it just kept going up and incorporating the tower into their structure."
He continued: "Much like a game like Minecraft, you can be a noob and just build a simple little thing. And you can also get the guys who go crazy and [can say], 'I rebuilt the spaceship from this game... [or] I rebuilt the Tardis from Doctor Who using the lights and stuff and it looks exactly like it.' Like, holy s**t that's incredible."
Fallout 4SP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Mount & Blade II - Debut at Gamescom 2015 @ NicheGamer
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord will be revealed at the Gamescom 2015 in Cologne:
TaleWorlds Entertainment will be revealing Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord for the first time at Gamescom 2015 in Cologne. Media will be invited to attend private viewing sessions of live gameplay from the game in its current state. Video and additional information about the game will be released to the general public concurrently, satiating some of the massive player demand for information on the new entry to the franchise.
The series, which has until now accumulated over 6 million unit sales, is a favourite among players, much loved for its refreshing sandbox gameplay that centres around player freedom. This next instalment takes place 200 years before Warband but brings the series forward by greatly expanding gameplay in all areas and offering much improved visuals.
Mount & Blade IISP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Monday - July 27, 2015
Witcher 3 - Is Getting A New Game Plus Mode
The last free DLC will be a 'New Game Plus Mode':
Already finished The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt multiple times?
We’ve got something coming up…
New Game+, the final DLC, is on the way and, of course, it’s completely FREE!
Stay tuned for more info regarding the release. It won’t happen this week though - we need a little bit more time to finish it.
Witcher 3SP/MP: Single-player
Wizardry 8 - in RPG Heroes Bundle
Wizardry 8 is one of the attractions in Bundle Stars new RPG Heroes Bundle. Other games included are Blades Of Time Limited Edition, bit Dungeon II, Etherlords I & II, Rune Classic, Fate:Undiscovered Realms, and Realms Of Arkania:Blades Of Destiny & the DLC For The Gods. The Bundle is $2.49 for the first 48 hours only. (42 Hours left as of this writing).
Wizardry 8SP/MP: Single-player
RoA: Blade of Destiny HD - Patch 1.35 Released
Two years after release we get a new 381 MB patch for RoA: Blade of Destiny HD:
After months of development and just in time prior to the 2 year anniversary of the Blade of Destiny release, Crafty Studios and the Beta Team of BoD HD are proud to present Patch 1.35, consisting of more than 300 changes, additions, modability extensions and fixes. Detailed patchnotes can be found in our official forum at Patchnotes 1.35. Just some highlights:Content changes and extensions
- Castle Felsteyn: Mod of Viana included as Event
- In Thorwal there is now the building "The Black Finger"
- You can now sell books in the Thorwal Mage Academy
- New event "Revenge of Ottaskin"
- New event in Phexcaer: Nancy's Note of Validor the villain
- Random city event "A pickpocket"
- Random city event "A Carriage"
- Random city event "A shooting star"
- Random city event "A beggar" extended
- 8 new events for resting at an inn
- 6 new events during outdoor camps
- 4 additional random battles after campsNew and updated Features
- User Interface is now scalable (e.g. for 4K resolutions)
- The console now logs experience points
- Console messages are in different colors
- Battle Avatar look improved (rimshader removed, specularity reduced)
- The spell "Solidirid" can now be used in the game
- The group now shares its food and water reserves
- The Spider demon is now a significantly bigger avatar in battle to diversify from the lesser spidersExtensions to Modability
- Displaying images (up to size 256x256) possible in dialog boxes
- Character classes can now have custom portraits by mod
- NPCs can now have custom portraits
- Temple flags (in size 256x512) can now be replaced
...and a myriad of Bugfixes.
Enjoy and spread the word!
RoA: Blade of Destiny HDSP/MP: Single-player
Edge Of EternitySP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
ICY - Released
Here is the official press blurb for the releases of ICY today on Steam now with a 25% discount and later also on Humble Store and others (but can't find it there now).
ICY, THE NARRATIVE-DRIVEN POST-APOCALYPTIC RPG LAUNCHES TODAY!CAN YOU SURVIVE THE WHITE WASTELAND?
STAMFORD, CT, July 27, 2015 – Digital Tribe Games is excited to announce the launch of Inner Void Entertainment’s narrative-driven, survival RPG, ICY, on Steam, Humble Store and other major digital distribution channels. ICY releases today at the suggested retail price of $12.99. An additional 25% discount will be available for a week in celebration of the title’s release.
ICY presents a full cast of complex characters with diverse personalities and dramatic backstories – each willing to tell you all if players decide to ask. Some characters encountered will even be willing to abandon their chosen path and join the player’s ever-growing nomad family as they make their way across the Frozen World in search of lost friends and a better life. Prepare to hunt, scavenge, trade and sometimes kill in order to obtain what is needed to survive.
In the world of the new Ice Age, players are immersed in the dire struggle to stay alive. The words you say and actions you make send you down branching paths where characters can become new friends, or bitter enemies, based on the tone of conversation you choose. The EXP players invested in Skills, and Items discovered when scavenging, dictate which options are available as they continually face new situations in this post-apocalyptic environment.
“ICY began as a little experiment inspired by NEO: Scavenger, which really managed to simulate the harshness of surviving in a hostile environment, as well as various RPGs in which player's choices really matter - Games where dialogue isn’t just something to skip to get back to shooting people.
Survival games are quite popular, but most of them are procedural games in which the player has to survive as long as he/she can. With ICY, we wanted to put a long and complex plot alongside some more standard mechanics of the survival genre, but without using a central hub in which the player had to constantly return to as they slowly gather and build resources to improve their chances of survival.
In ICY, the player is the leader of a nomad family where survival is based on more than just collecting resources. That is just part of the nomad’s daily routine where survival not only consists of hunting and scavenging, but also how they choose to interact with other characters and tackle the situations they face as the narrative of the game plays out.
We worked hard to give it a unique flavor, to create a unique experience. ICY is not a clone of another game, but something with its own identity and we are very proud we have been able to achieve that.”
- Nathan Piperno, Inner Void
ICY is out today for Windows PC and Mac on Steam, Humble Store and other major digital distribution channels. Gamers will enjoy a celebratory 25% discount during the launch week.
- Experience an intense and mature story of survival in a unique post-apocalyptic new Ice Age setting.
- Influence the plot with your choices, each containing various shades of morality that lead to multiple endings.
- Lead a group of survivors, each one with different needs, values and ideals.
- Scavenge for items and hunt for food while facing the challenges of starvation, illness, harsh elements as well as other bands of survivors.
- Over 400 pieces of detailed hand-drawn artwork illustrate the backdrop for the story.
- Customize your character by choosing how to distribute attribute points among 3 main character traits and 10 different skills that effects your abilities and experience through the entire game.
Baldur's Gate - In Depth Analysis
On our forums Lilura mentioned her/his blog is now covering the first two parts of the (expected) 10 part analysis of Baldur's Gate. The length of these two parts are already individually longer than an average review, so it is more than that. It is in any case an interesting read, if you are up to it.
Welcome to my Baldur's Gate review thing-a-mee! The following comments, criticisms and pro-tips pertain to BioWare's first RPG - Baldur's Gate (1998) & Tales of the Sword Coast (1999), patched to 5512; so, what follows is based on the original release and expansion only. While fixes, tweaks and various ambitious mods have long-existed that fix glitches, bugs and change the game-play, my concern is just with Baldur's Gate (& TotSC) as BioWare released it, "warts n all". Much of what I write here is from a somewhat fuzzy memory, so if I get something blatantly wrong please don't hesitate to jump down my throat, so that I can correct it before I mislead too many... ok, let's get on with this!...
...BioWare eschewed a traditional, tactical turn-based combat system in favor of real-time with pause (RTwP) or "pause n play"; and while I personally would have preferred the former - as seen previously in Goldbox and Fallout (and subsequently in ToEE) - apart from the niggling imprecisions related to pathfinding and spacebar tapping (ie, pause), combat is free-flowing and still fairly tactical and satisfying. The player controls up to six combat units (i.e, a party of adventurers) in "point n click" fashion, assigning them tasks singularly or as marquee-selectable groups. The basic combat flow is: "pause the game when enemy sighted, assign commands to your units (move, attack, cast spell, backstab etc.), unpause and observe what unfolds, pause again to make adjustments and assign more commands, rinse n repeat until enemy is dead". I'll write in-depth on melee, ranged and spell-casting combat in the follow-up to this post.
Baldur's GateSP/MP: Single + MP
The Technomancer - New Screnshots
Four new screenshots for The Technomancer are available.
The Technomancer, the Red Planet explored in screenshots
The new Sci-fi RPG from studio Spiders will be presented in more detail during Gamescom in Cologne
The Technomancer, the new sci-fi RPG for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC from developer Spiders, today unveils new exclusive screenshots.
Technomancers are "mage-warriors", who harness, thanks to an innate talent, destructive electrical-based powers, amplified by their cybernetic implants. Both respected and feared by all, they are fearsome warriors trained from a young age to fight. You are one of them, about to finally pass your initiation rite to become a fully-fledged Technomancer.
In today's images, we discover the Technomancer and his companions, about to explore one of the Old Domes, vestiges of the first human colonies on Mars and places considered "sacred" by Technomancers, who guard them zealously. Like the rest of the planet, the Ancient Domes are dangerous places, with countless dangers such as looters lured by the prospect of lost technology, as well as some of the most dangerous mutant creatures to roam the Red Planet. This is a true challenge for an aspirant Technomancer, about to pass his initiation rite...
The TechnomancerSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
The Mandate - Production Update
A lengthy update for The Mandate showed up on their Kickstarter page, providing information on the stage they are in with development and offering a range of new screenshots an animation preview and a 8 minute preview of the 2 hour soundtrack.
Before we continue, we want to address the subject of Alpha and Feature Beta. Back when we announced the deal with Eurovideo in Kickstarter update #45 last year, our plan was to roll out Alpha in early third quarter. We are in third quarter but our Alpha version is not ready yet. Now what do we mean by that? Well, we want to deliver a top notch quality product so that you can enjoy the Alpha and provide valuable feedback. We also want to have the capacity to respond to the feedback and make a better game. We are not yet feature complete, and from both a stability, usability and performance point of view we still have work to do. Our current focus is the Gamescom demo preparations and we will share gameplay footage from this demo soon. As for when you can expect the Alpha, we will get back to you as soon as we know more.
...Shifting focus to the art budget we can say that since space combat and boarding combat are two of our main game modes it follows that a large part of our art budget is allocated to those two modes. Ships, ship interiors, character armours and animations make up the bulk of the art budget.
...Next we have the character armours which are important for boarding combat. Again we are aiming for the same eight factions as with the ships. For each faction we are producing four sets of armour: a duty suit (jump suit), light, medium and heavy armour. So far we have produced the Grand Fleet, Black Eagle and Romanov armour sets. The Arkwright armours are currently in production. Our production rate is approximately 1 faction or 4 armours per month and we expect all armours to be completed by end of December.
The MandateSP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Matt Chat - #301: Chris Avellone on Siege of Dragonspear
Chris and Matt against the technology curse :)
Chris Avellone is the best! After hearing about the snafu with the missing segment last week, Chris volunteered to redo it! It's all about Baldur's Gate Siege of Dragonspear this week, one of the most exciting expansions ever.
Sunday - July 26, 2015
Guild of Dungeoneering - Review @ TechRaptor
Xavier Mendel (TechRaptor) has reviewed Guild of Dungeoneering:
Guild of Dungeoneering is a game by Gambrinous, purchasable here at GOG for $15 or from other outlets seen on their website. It’s a turn based dungeon crawler that gets its originality by building the dungeon around the hero rather than by playing as the hero directly. Each turn you can play three cards, of which there are rooms, monsters, and loot. You progress through the dungeons and reach objectives by adding rooms and monsters, getting loot, and leveling up. At the end of each dungeon the hero resets, but the money gained from the adventure can be used to upgrade your guild for better rewards, new classes, and boons that can be applied selectively. [...]
Final Score: 9/10 Amazing
Summary : Guild of Dungeoneering is a fun roguelike that adds guild management, card battles, and other interesting mechanics into one package to create an awesome game.
Guild of DungeoneeringSP/MP: Single-player
Genre: Card-Based RPG
The Guardian - Commodore Amiga at 30
Keith Stuart looks back at the 30 year old Commodore Amiga:
Commodore Amiga at 30 – the computer that made the UK games industry
It’s 30 years since Commodore launched its powerful Amiga 1000 computer, ushering in the era of Worms, Lemmings and myriad other Britsoft classics
In 1985 my family made a terrible mistake – a mistake that would have far-reaching consequences; a mistake that would blight my life for several painful years. I still look back at it with a sense of sadness and, yes, if I’m honest, fury. What happened was this – and if you’re a gamer of a certain age, you may want to sit down: my family bought an Atari ST instead of a Commodore Amiga.
With its powerful 16bit processor and vast 256k of memory (expandable to 512k and beyond), the original Amiga 1000 was the epoch-shattering home computer that effectively invented the concept of the all-round multimedia machine. The Atari ST, meanwhile, was pretty good for midi music.
Today, the Amiga is 30 years old and the internet is full of veteran computer users nostalgically wallowing in its seminal importance. In fact, many of those people probably experienced the internet for the first time on an Amiga, via its original 1680 Modem (it had a 1200 baud rate, speed fans).
But at the time, I didn’t care about its serious computing prowess or the fact that its multitasking operating system was incredibly advanced. I cared about games. And the Amiga was amazing for games – especially for British developers.
ICY - Let's Play Video
Colonel RPG has started a let's play series for the upcoming game ICY:
ICY is a narrative-driven post-apocalyptic survival RPG set in a new Ice Age where your life and the lives of your followers hang on every decision you make. Create your own character using a detailed stats system that influences your abilities to hunt, travel, scavenge, communicate and lead then begin a journey of survival across the white wasteland.
It is up to you to take on the responsibilities and lead your new-found nomad family in their fight for survival. Do not take your role lightly for each decision you make, each word you speak, ripples through the lives of your community.
You and your group are not alone in this frozen world. In addition to the elements and wild life you encounter there will be loners and bands of miscreants to deal with. Decide well on who to trust and how to react or the snow covered landscape will become your icy tomb.
ICY Release Date: July 27
Dragon Age 2 - Retrospective @ 102.1 the Edge
Andy Borkowski is a news anchor and host of the radio show “VGS” (=Video Game Sophistry) across the Corus Radio Network. He continued to talk with the lead writer of the Dragon Age franchise David Gaider all about the series.
This time he sunk his teeth into Dragon Age 2. He outlines exactly why it major portions were cut, how the game could be better and why he nearly walked out.
Dragon Age 2SP/MP: Single-player
Platform: PC, Xbox 360, PS3
Saturday - July 25, 2015
Deus Ex: MD - Defeat Bosses with Combat, Stealth or a Chat @ GamesRadar
Joxer spotted this article at GamesRadar:
Deus Ex Mankind Divided lets you defeat bosses with combat, stealth or a chat
Despite being one helluva great game, Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boss fights were a nasty bottle of plonk next to the balanced vintage of the main story. Eidos Montreal has already promised that it's leaned from its boss battle boo boos while still pushing itself to ask some really hard questions with its latest effort, Mankind Divided. In the latest issue of Official Xbox Magazine, gameplay director Patrick Fortier and narrative director Mary DeMarle discuss the importance of giving you the same freedom of choice you have in boss encounters as you do in the main game.
Considering the stark difference of quality between those dust-ups and Human Revolution's engaging story, it's so surprise to learn those battles were actually developed by a separate studio. Thankfully, for Mankind Divided, Eidos Montreal is firmly in charge. "It’s all about supporting all the different play aspects," says Fortier. "That was the main thing that was missing from the boss fights. Thematically, I think they were interesting, but certain players found a challenge there that wasn’t really catered to them." Mankind Divided’s bosses are much more balanced in this regard. "There are ways to stealth them, there are ways to beat them in combat and there are conversations you can have that maybe give you a different means of dealing with the situation altogether."
"You can also decide to do it lethally or not," adds narrative director Mary DeMarle. "For Human Revolution, because of the way we designed it, [the bosses] always died in the cutscenes. You had no choice. But we rectified that in the Missing Link DLC, and we’ve rectified it in this game." This means the outcome of your boss fight will directly affect the story going forward. Finally, true Deus Ex choice is ours!
Deus Ex: MDSP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Lord of the Rings Online - A Trip Through the Trollshaws
In this new Fluent's World video, I take a leisurely trip through the Trollshaws in the game Lord of the Rings Online and continue to work on my Speechcraft skills! Best of all, the video has been recorded in glorious 4K resolution on the highest graphical settings, so details are crisp.
Check it out!
Hey everyone! In this fun little video I take a look at Rivendell and take a trip through the legendary Trollshaws in the online RPG, Lord of the Rings Online! I talk a bit about what makes the game interesting and my time spent with it, and show off a bit of the Trollshaws and the road to the Lone-Lands!
If you'd like to see more videos like this, please let me know in the comments section! I can showcase various aspects of the game, like showing off different zones, places to find quests, tips & tricks and more.
LotRO: Mines of MoriaSP/MP: Massive
Chaos Reborn - Interview @ PCGamesN
Interview with Julian Gollop, the designer of Chaos Reborn:
The growth of Chaos Reborn: X-Com's Julian Gollop on Early Access and defecting to the aliens
Chaos Reborn has been one of the finest turn-based skirmish games available on PC for over a year. But only in its last update did it grow an outer layer - equivalent to the globe view that lends X-Com’s strategic shootouts their permanence.
Julian Gollop, designer of both games, ended a stint at Ubisoft to take remake Chaos. He saw it as a return to the independence he’d enjoyed in the ‘80s. But in reality he’s now beholden to a new set of voices: the double whammy of Kickstarter backers and Early Access buyers.
“I don’t know how to put it. It feels like you’re in an arena with a gigantic audience, all shouting at you, trying to tell you what to do.” he laughs. “Everybody’s watching you on every step and they’re analysing it in minute detail. That is perhaps a little bit scary in some ways.” [...]
Chaos RebornSP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Spiderweb Software - Interview @ Don't Die
Jeff Vogel did a lengthy interview with Don't Die about indie game development, the state of the industry, how games are reviewed, the internet and more.
So, I'm just gonna zoom out meta really quick. Everything on the Internet now works on clicks. Everyone from the lowest blogger to The New York Times gets paid by clicks. You write something for 1,000 clicks, you make $n. You write something that gets 2,000 clicks, you make twice that. This is an oversimplification, but that's the basic idea. When you write something, you don't want to be telling the hard truth. You don't want to make the world a better place. You want to get clicked, and that's how you eat. And that's the system.
I think that the system has certain effects on how people communicate and how people think. If you write an article that makes people angry and people get super-angry and they keep going to it and arguing about it and going to that page and arguing about it, that's the most efficient way to make money. And the most efficient way to make people angry is to go to certain sorts of politics and certain sorts of identity politics and just bang the drum and everyone gets mad, and then they'll go to your comments section and they'll get in big arguments and that's more and more and more clicks. And, you know, I can't change the system. It just developed and here it is and we all just have to deal with it in our own ways.
I delete a lot of bookmarks. A lot of websites that I love get infected by it to varying degrees, and I just go there less. When people write a headline -- clickbait is really popular and I think it is a very accurate term. You will see a website like "Five Things You Didn't Know about Cherries" or this next one's a real example from Slate: "You've Been Making Scrambled Eggs the Wrong Way Your Whole Life." Let us tell you the right way. The headlines themselves are designed to make you angry.
The headlines themselves are designed to raise your blood pressure just to click and go, "Oh hell yeah I know how to make scrambled eggs. I'm gonna go to the forums and let's argue about scrambled eggs."
Let's not. Scrambled eggs are fine. Scrambled eggs don't need our help. Videogames are afflicted by this, but everyone's afflicted by this now. Identity politics are the best ways to get the clicks. If I was working for Kotaku, I would write articles all the livelong day that was like -- what's a game? Splatoon. Splatoon's a game that just came out.
"Splatoon's an Example of White Male Privilege." Say I wrote an article with that headline. It doesn't matter what the article is about. People are going to click on that link. It doesn't necessarily -- I don't know. I've never played Splatoon. For all I know it is all about white male privilege. So, if anyone wants a quote to pull out of context: Splatoon is all about white male privilege. There. "Noted Indie Developer Calls Splatoon Racist." [Laughs.] Why not? I need the attention, too. We don’t get a lot of press.
People single out the gaming press for it, but all press works like that on the Internet. And because the Internet is the only press -- in my country now, that's how all the press works. I personally think it kind of sucks but that's just where we are. All of everyone's wants and needs have added up to that and we just kind of have to live with it, but every once in a while, I'm still gonna say, "This isn't great. I'm not enjoying this very much." It won't change anything, but at least once in a while people should say it.
Seven Dragon Saga - Development Update
A development update from TSI Games:
Seven Dragon Saga moving ahead
Meet the Slyth Warden, one of the many dragonkin who vie for dominance in the mountains of the Firewind Coast. Suspicious of the empire, they are likely enemies, but with the right inducements, they could be powerful allies. It’s all a matter of player choice, as they adventure deep into the Drakelands, in service to their emperor.
We are proceeding along developing different elements of the game. In Engineering, we’ve been running various elements of combat and movement through prototyping. Checking out how best to implement multiple targets, area of effect attacks, and persistent things like zones. On the movement side, Seven Dragon Saga has a number of methods to move, and we want them to feel different and work clearly. Mystic Leap allows characters to leap up onto areas others can’t, and gain height advantage. Special thanks to junior engineer Sebastian for taking point on the prototype process.
Up next is how best for the game to recognize cover, then determine if it is half or full, and convey this in an intelligent manner to the players. Then there are Attacks of Opportunity and the Retaliate ability to work out. Lots of little details where frequent prototype iterations works wonders.
In design, we are creating flow charts for story progression, depending on which factions the player is aiding, and which he’s harming. David Shelley pushes a strategic vision, while Edwin McRae drives things from an NPC and story arc viewpoint. This all feeds into the locations we need, and hence the environmental art required.
In systems, Paul Murray and David Shelley are running through a first draft of the various crafting methods, beginning with Alchemy. Again, this affects other elements, such as the skills system, and especially the economy (meaning what players find as loot, as well as, in stores). While single player game economics has a bit more slop allowed than in multi-player games, we still need valuable items to feel valuable and achievable. All the glittery things scattered on the ground after battle should have some meaning.
The art team is busy as ever, since we revamped under our new art director, Lee Dotson. The animation and rigging team is moving from player characters to the first batch of enemies. The new environments are moving from concept to implementation. And we’ve squeezed in a revision to our main user interface — with much discussion with the designers over what the scribbled wireframes really mean for functionality. Meetings can be noisy, but very positive.
Seven Dragon SagaSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
BombshellSP/MP: Single + MP
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release: In development