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Clandestine

2014-12-09

Clandestine - Playthrough Diary

Aubrielle infiltrates Clandestine and brings back valuable intel about the upcoming spy thriller.
» Continue reading the article...

Heroes of a Broken Land

2014-11-25

Heroes of a Broken Land Review

Forgottenlor takes us to Heroes of a Broken Land, and shows us what it's like to be a demigod in this retro dungeon crawler.
» Read the article

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Recently Released

Dec: Neo Scavenger
Dec: Final Fantasy XIII-2
Dec: Dungeonmans
Dec: Dead State
Dec: Skilltree Saga

Friday - December 05, 2014

Skyrim - Rice University Offers Course on Skyrim

by Aubrielle, 08:19

Skyrim hit the west like a thu'um, and it made a huge impact here in America, where I live.  But why was it so huge?  Rice University attempts to examine that in a new course.

In a fantastic refutation of the snobby derisiveness most of academia levels at video games, Professor Donna Ellard is offering a course in Skyrim to her students at Rice University. It isn’t a development or game design class, either. “Scandinavian Fantasy Worlds: Old Norse Sagas and Skyrim,” which first hit the course catalogue in 2012, is interdisciplinary but leans towards the humanities–students play the game, of course, but they  also read Norse mythology and Freudian psychoanalysis to try and determine why Skyrim holds such appeal for American audiences. “We have no historical relationship to the British mediaeval past, and, even further afield than that, we’ve got no cultural kinship with Scandinavia…so the class is really interrogating why we have such strong cathexis to a medieval period that is not our own and also to a medieval period that is markedly Viking,” Ellard told the New Statesman.

Professor Ellard believes that connections can be drawn between the setting of Skyrim and the current state of American politics–not the jazzy fantasy bits where the dragons are returning, but the tensions between empires and their unhappy subjects.  “[Skyrim] comes in a world post-9/11. [This] was a moment in which the US started to realise it was an empire on the rocks and its popularity through the beginning of the 2000s very much corresponded both to its insecurities as a nation and as an empire that recognised itself as no longer the tour de force that it thought it was,” said Ellard.

Odds are, most Americans bought the game so that they could hack wizards to death with a battle axe, and that’s fine. Ellard does have a point, though: the stories that a culture chooses to tell are good indicators for what that culture cares about. So for America, that’s the murky morality of an imperial system of government, and dragons. Sounds about right.

More information.

Source: Pixel Dynamo

Skyrim

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

GOG - Winter Sale Starts Early

by Aubrielle, 08:12

GOG started its winter sale...already?  It runs until December 15, and if you go really soon, you can snag a copy of Age of Wonders for free, while supplies last.

More information.

GOG

Details

Deus Ex: Universe - The Engine That is Used

by Myrthos, 00:21

PC Gamer has an article with some more information on the engine that is used for the next Deus Ex installment, named Dawn.

"As you can imagine, the Dawn Engine will form the cornerstone for all Deus Ex Universe projects at Eidos-Montréal," Ramtohul writes. "Some of you have had concerns that 'Universe' meant 'MMO'. Rest assured, it does not.

"Deus Ex Universe is the name we are giving to the fictional world and the rich lore we are creating for it, which will of course include core games, as well as any other projects that will help bring the world of Deus Ex to life."

Thanks Trasher.

Deus Ex: Universe

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-fi
Genre: Shooter-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Thursday - December 04, 2014

Runemaster - Development Frozen

by Killias2, 18:53

After the good news about Dead State comes bad news about Paradox Development Studio's first RPG, Runemaster:

I have some news to share with you today regarding Runemaster. After much internal debate we have made the decision to freeze development of the project until further notice and move the development team working on it to other projects within Paradox Development Studio.

This was not an easy decision to make - Runemaster was a very ambitious project for us, and the team working on it brought all of their passion, dedication, and talent to the table. Despite our best efforts and a couple of re-scopes, Runemaster in its current form was unable to live up to the standards we set for ourselves here at Paradox.

Runemaster was a different type of game for us, and even though we were not able to fully realize our vision for it, we will take the lessons we learned to heart as we move forward with new endeavors. We will also look into how we can re-use the best parts of the game in other ways.

Our aim is to let all the talented developers who worked on the project to remain with Paradox Development Studio and bring their expertise to the other great games currently in development.

I hope Paradox finds a way to make this work in the future, but, in general, I am happier to see Paradox and PDS kill a project rather than release something below expectations.

Runemaster

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Dead State - Release Today

by Killias2, 18:48

According to today's Kickstarter Update, Dead State is being released today!

This is it - Dead State is finally out! I know I’ve said this many times before, but truly, this game could not exist without Kickstarter and backers like you. Delivering the game we promised has been an obsession for us, and while we worked many long days and nights to create it, the release day has finally come. Thank you all for your patience and your patronage!


Please check out our last Kickstarter update for an FAQ and details about how to get your Steam copy if you haven't yet.  Those who opted for non-Steam will start seeing their GOG codes arriving in their KS message boxes shortly.  For those who backed at a physical reward tier, rest assured that getting those straightened out is our first priority post-launch!  

Don't forget to take a look at our manual - Dead State is a complex game with a lot of depth, so this is a very helpful resource for anyone hoping to master combat and exploration!

If you have any questions about Dead State, the launch, or anything else, the absolute fastest way to get them addressed is to post them on Dead State's forums; devs, mods, and veteran Early Access players are available to help you out, especially those of you playing the game for the first time! 

Personally, I'm already behind on Divinity, Wasteland 2, Lords of the Fallen, and Dragon Age Inquisition, but I can't wait to get to Dead State and give it a proper try.

Dead State

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wednesday - December 03, 2014

After Reset - New Build Released

by Myrthos, 23:12

In a backer only update, the developers of After Reset tell us that a new release is eminent, explain on how the modeling process works and offer details on Early Access for those who have not backed the game.

In this news I’d like to share with you several important decisions about the upcoming SEA.

First, we’re releasing this closed beta (only for backers), and we’re doing this in stages (each of them have decent amount of content):
- Character creation
- Special Facility level
- Science Facility level
- Main Level
- Cave level
- Cave Entrance level

Second, we’re going to open SEA for public sales after the Special Facility level is completely done, but no earlier than January 2015.

Third, as planned we’re going to revise the values of the pledges according to the Steam channel distribution. This will stress the benefits of the early supporters from Kickstarter and Direct Pledges.

Forth, right before SEA opens up to the public we’re removing the digital version of the game from our website’s store page and linking directly to the Steam store. We will still be offering physical preorder versions of the game, including several features and the graphic novels.

Fives, right before SEA opens up to the public we’re removing Co-Founder status reward from any pledge, but we’re still going to supply our current Co-Founders with the extra stuff as we’ve always done. As I promised, I’d like to grow the value of this proud title but not “selling it.” After open SEA launch, I reckon the only opportunity to get this status will be special events or exclusive rewards.

 

 

After Reset

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Pantheon - November Video Update

by Myrthos, 20:12

The November update for the MMO Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen is now available.

Thanks Black Rune.

Pantheon

SP/MP: Massive
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: MMORPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Dungeons Of Aledorn - Teaser Video

by Myrthos, 20:10

Here is a teaser video for Dungeons of Aledorn.

Thanks Black Rune.

Dungeons Of Aledorn

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

1Quest - Released on Steam

by Myrthos, 20:08

The turn-based roguelike RPG 1Quest is now available from Steam.

1Quest is a turn-based roguelike RPG where you play as a young adventurer who pursues an evil blood cult that has abducted several children, including the princess of the kingdom!

You got 7 days before they can start their evil ritual to summon an ancient demon by sacrificing the children. Each region of the realm contains dungeons full of hostile creatures, but you will also find help and get various rewards depending on which path you take towards rescuing the children. But you need to hurry, if you want to save them all...

Fight monsters, grab loot, become more powerful and prevent the blood cult from summoning the demon.

Key features

  • Turn based RPG
  • 5 races
  • 18 Differents classes
  • More than 150 class abilities and spells for characters
  • More than 100 monsters
  • 20 Differents dungeons with specific rewards
  • Magic system based on spell schools and magic affinities for more diversity and replayability

Indie RPGs

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Satellite Reign - A Closer Look

by Myrthos, 19:51

On her own blog Aubrielle explores the information available of the cyberpunk strategy RPG Satellite Reign, which is coming to Early Access on the 11th of December.

For example, you won’t be able to have 2 Soldiers and 2 Hackers to make up the team, this doesn’t mean you can’t bias the entire team towards a specific play style you prefer, it just means each agent will have unique skills and ways of achieving goals in your chosen style.

Hmm…sounds pretty stiff and linear.  I am wondering how we’ll pull off any real flexibility with a pre-chosen team.  It seems like they’d want to give the players as much openness as possible, let them screw up if they wanted to take four soldiers or four hackers, let them run into impossible cyber-obstacles or let them get killed a few times, make them learn hard lessons.  But I guess we’ll see how this translates in terms of gameplay.  Maybe it will end up working out.  The devs still insist we’ll have plenty of choice in how or even if we want to go into a fight.

Satellite Reign

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-fi
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Dark Souls II - Extra Credits on Dark Souls II's Approach to Game Difficulty

by Killias2, 17:07

Popular YouTube games commentators Extra Credits have created a video discussing Dark Souls II's approach to game difficulty.  And, no, it's not just another video discussing how hard the Souls games are.  It's about the specific choices made to balance Dark Souls II and how the player is given space to tailor the difficulty to their own needs.

Dark Souls II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Ultima - Why did the Avatar of Virtue screw up everything s/he touched?

by Killias2, 16:59

Rampant Coyote has penned a response to Richard Cobbett's recent editorial on the legacy of Ultima's avatar:

I was amused by PC Gamer’s article by Richard Cobbett, “Ultima: The Legacy of the Avatar.” (Hat tip to RPGWatch for the link). He doesn’t present anything all that new, although he does drive home the idea that the Avatar’s efforts to save Britannia ultimately led to its doom. Actually, not even saving Britannia. Just trying to be a nice guy and exemplify virtues in Ultima IV. It sets off a number of escalating, horrible events.

However, unlike Cobbett, Rampant Coyote believes the reason for this plot progression is rather mundane:

My personal belief is that Richard Garriott had already done the “save the world” story three times with new characters – the Girlfriend of the Big Bad, and the Computer-Child of the Big Bad – in Ultima I – III. Ultima IV was a departure from that, and a much celebrated one at that. From that point further, however, there was the problem of putting the world back in peril so the Avatar was needed. But then there’s also the concern about how that world ever lasted past five generations without the Avatar’s help, because it’s constantly in peril (well, every 200 years or so).

The natural answer, when starting anew, is to build the new peril off of what has already come before. In other words, instead of a brand-new earth-shattering event, it’s more of a revision or evolution of a peril that had come before. Since the games left very few “loose ends” at the end of each one, a new game had to tug some new ones loose to be tied into the narrative.

Ultima

Details

Telepath Tactics - November Update

by Killias2, 15:50

Sinister Design has posted the latest update on Telepath Tactics.  It's a long update with plenty of news, but here are a few choice bits:

To sum up: we now have all of the rest poses and all of the walk cycles for the game’s 23 promoted classes, and 11 of the promoted classes now have 100% completed attack animations as well. Once the remaining promoted classes get their attack animations, all promoted character graphics will be complete.

Speaking of which: as of today, I am officially up to the final third of the game! My goal for this coming month is to create a complete rough draft of this final portion of the game. If I hit my mark, I’ll have that done by December 31, leaving me January, February, and March for playtesting, polishing, Steam implementation, and badgering my artists into finishing up any graphical loose ends. I plan to send out press copies around the end of February; this means we’ll have reviews ready to go when I release the finished game in late March 2015 (right near the end of winter).

There is also news on a slew of other updates, such as balance changes, polish, new cutscenes, and more.  It seems that Telepath Tactics is starting to come together, especially if he feels comfortable discussing a March release date.

Telepath Tactics

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Kingdom Come: Deliverance - Video Update #9

by Abharsair, 10:59

In his latest video update (#9), Daniel Vavra of Warhorse Studios talks about the Tech Alpha update, bugs, a new stretch goal, and more.

You are welcome to our new video update about repairing bugs in the Tech Alpha (introducing Anna from QA), about December Alpha update with map, skip time and secret minigame, about 1st person vs 3rd person dilemma and last but not least the secret game... Mortal Vavra!

 

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Wasteland 2 - Life Beyond Release

by Abharsair, 10:41

Chris Keenan of inXile has posted Update #58 on Kickstarter, in which he explains what the team has been up to since the release of Wasteland 2 back in September.

We’ve released three major patches since the last Kickstarter update, with over a thousand improvements to the game. The team has tackled things like major optimization passes, UI usability improvements, as well as tracking down bugs. Wasteland 2 is an incredibly large and complex game, with many moving parts, and we've been working down to the smallest details (including typos).

He also mentions that many of the development team have moved on to Torment: Tides of Numenera, but that there's still a dedicated crew working on fixing and improving Wasteland 2.

Interestingly enough, he also writes that he and some others are beginning to work on a new RPG and that they'll release news about it in the New Year.

Along with continued tuning of Wasteland 2, myself and a few others at the studio are beginning to work on another RPG that has been passionately demanded of us for a while now! It’s still quite early in the process, but we will have more news on that in the New Year.

Wasteland 2

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-apoc
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Tuesday - December 02, 2014

Enderal: Shards Of Order - Undercity Teaser Trailer

by Abharsair, 22:22

The SureAI team has released a new teaser trailer for Enderal: Shards Of Order. They've also announced they have been nominated in the "Best Upcoming" category in Moddb.com's "Mod of the year" awards and have asked for your support. If you want to help them, head over to Moddb.com and vote for their project.

Skyrim

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Dragon Age: Inquisition - Review Roundup # 5

by Abharsair, 20:56

Not amazingly, reviews for Dragon Age: Inquistion are still pouring in from the smaller, more obscure sites.

Gamengage gives it an 8.5/10 and has the following to say:

Dragon Age: Inquisition is strangely addicting. Yep it’s a little surprising to be saying after the miserable failure that was Dragon Age 2. It was widely anticipated that Dragon Age: Inquisition was a bit of a tossup when it came to the expected quality. I went into the game with an open mind and I am grateful that I did. Without worrying about the creators and publishers of Dragon Age: Inquisition I was able to actually enjoy the game as it was intended.

GameCritics.com didn't enjoy it quite as much and gave it a 6.5/10.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is a frustrating game. I often found myself scratching and clawing through boring, MMO-like content for enough power points to progress to the next major plot event. However, the fact that I was willing to slog through it at all shows just how good this game can be when it hits its stride. The dichotomy between the narrative parts and all that shoddy fetchquesting is a shame because when it hits those high notes, Inquisition is an absolutely beautiful experience.

The Koalition however calls it "Savior of the Industry" and finds only tacked-on multiplayer and a bug, which locks up the game during conversations, to be critique-worthy. The final score is 95/100.

There is more that can be said about this game but it really is one of those titles that has to be experienced to be appreciated. Granted that RPGs aren’t for everyone but fans of the genre will find little to complain about here. Bioware have truly gone out of their way to deliver one of the most deeply satisfying titles out there. A game of this scope is rare and having it released in a year where nearly every major title disappointed makes it stand out even more. Dragon Age: Inquisition is the title that the game industry needed.

Unfortunately, the size of these areas is also Inquisition's greatest problem. The majority of the quests in these areas are of the "go here and get this" variety, which offer little in the way of interesting story or character bits. In fact, the overall structure of these areas feels very much like an MMORPG, and not in a good way. Inquisition seems big for the sake of being big, stuffed with fetchquest after fetchquest solely for the purpose of increasing gameplay length. - See more at: http://www.gamecritics.com/richard-naik/dragon-age-inquisition-review#sthash.NZBJV0ur.dpuf
GameCritics.com#sthash.NZBJV0ur.dpuf
GameCritics.com#sthash.NZBJV0ur.dpuf
GameCritics.com#sthash.NZBJV0ur.dpuf
GameCritics.com#sthash.NZBJV0ur.dpuf

Dragon Age: Inquisition

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Dragon Age: Inquisition - Exploring Hidden Places

by Aries100, 17:50

Bioware released a twitch stream called Exploring Hidden Places. Spoilers aplenty, so view
at your own risk. However, the most interesting news was that there are 3 patches in the works, the first one seems to be coming in a short while according to Cameron Lee in the Twitch Stream.

Thanks to ForgottenWarrior at the DAI forums for finding this. 

Source: BioWare

Dragon Age: Inquisition

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

I Shall Remain - November Update

by Myrthos, 12:53

The sixth major update of I Shall Remain is here with an even longer list of changes than listed below:

Note: Since a lot of logical changes have been made to Doctrines and Weapons, it is suggested to start a new game in order to have it working correctly (the game won't crash but the doctrines and weapons won't do what people were used to have them doing)

Key features in the I Shall Remain Sixth update.

- Ellis Island map extended and updated
- Two new maps are in (Holland Tunnel Subway and Alphabet City)
- Doctrines have been revamped and updated, 28 new doctrines have been added (128 in total now to shape your character)
- New doctrine effects (avoid explosives, max encumbrance, pierce armor, more scraps from weapon dismantling)
- Weapons have levels now, the level influencing their characteristics (damage, repair cost, most of the weapon effects, serum cost)
- We can now upgrade our weapons by spending scraps/serum (Enhance ammo, Increase rarity, Increase Level, Add random weapon bonus). This opens up new possibilities to upgrade and improve your weapons
- Weapon Enhancer loot items added (these represents an effect we can apply on a weapon, from range to damage or inflict weakness). This opens up endless possibilities to customize your weapons
- 10 new Infected mutations added (Regeneration, Burden, Drain, Osmosis, Enrage, Rejuvenation, Acute sense, Aura, Armor, Crowd), each with its own logic to improve the infected behavior and statistics. We have now 22 mutations the Infected can have in any combination)
- Added "Unique' rarity. 8 new Unique weapons created, all given as quick-events rewards. Some of them have special names :)
- Large texture overhaul. Recreated many textures and adjusted others. Generally higher resolution, new normal mapping and sharper details overall
- Main and secondary quests and content added and updated (new quests from Andrea, Thomas, Jim, Chain, Jay, Cathy)
- 12 new music pieces are in
- New teammate - CJ Hodges (Sibling and Commander abilities)

I Shall Remain

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Modern
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

ZX Spectrum - Brought Back to Life

by Myrthos, 12:35

Perhaps not really RPG news, but it is capable of playing quite a bit of RPGs. If you are old enough to have known and used the ZX Spectrum, this might be an opportunity to play some of the 14.000 games again, that were created in the time, by participating in the Indiegogo campaign, which has been started featuring the ZX Spectrum Vega.

The Vega has been developed by Chris Smith, a former ZX Spectrum games developer who is the world's leading expert on Sinclair Spectrum technology and author of the definitive technical book "The ZX Spectrum ULA: How to design a microcomputer".

 

Retro Computers Ltd is making arrangements with the owners of the software rights to Spectrum games to donate a combined software royalty to a charity – Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. The company’s Chairman, Dr David Levy, had his life saved by the hospital when he was diagnosed with meningitis as a 3-year-old.

The development of the Sinclair Spectrum Vega is complete, and we have a fully working prototype waiting to go into production within the UK. We are making contact with thousands of the original Spectrum game developers in order to secure their permission to use their games on the Vega, for which a combined software royalty will be donated to charity ‒ Great Ormond Street Hospital for children.

Once the first 1,000 Limited Edition Vegas have been manufactured and shipped, and we move on to the next 3,000 units and thereafter to batches of 10,000 or more, the retail price of the Vega will reduce. But even at £100 the cost of the limited edition Vega, with its 1,000 games built-in, represents a huge saving over the cost of the original product plus the cost of 1,000 of the original Spectrum games. What cost thousands of pounds back in the 1980s is now available for around 1 per cent of that amount.

Indiegogo

Details

Monday - December 01, 2014

Skilltree Saga - To be Released on the 4th

by Myrthos, 11:04

Here is a game that did not get to much press attention: The Dark Eye: Skilltree Saga. It is going to be released this week Thursday.

'The Dark Eye: Skilltree Saga' releases at December 4th 2014 on Steam

Düren, November 27th 2014 – We would like to announce the latest collaboration of Silent Dreams, the creators of the Grotesque Tactics saga, and Headup Games, which will launch on Steam on the 4th of December: The Dark Eye: Skilltree Saga.

The Dark Eye: Skilltree Saga is the first casual RPG with Rogue-like Elements in Aventuria - the world of the famous pen and paper RPG "The Dark Eye". Choose your race as human, elf or dwarf and battle your random generated opponents in up to 100 deep stages with numerous skill, which you can advance and enhance.

We have some screenshots in our gallery and here is a trailer to watch as well.

Skilltree Saga

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Roguelike
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Dungeons Of Aledorn - New Screenshots

by Myrthos, 10:36

The website of Dungeons of Aledorn has been updated with a few screenshots.

Thanks Black Rune.

Dungeons Of Aledorn

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Balrum - Version 0.88 Released

by Myrthos, 10:31

Version 0.88 of Balrum has been released and with this version all reported problem reports are apparently fixed.

-Finally the 2x zoom option does not make the mouse super fast.
-There is an “always walk” feature for your convenience. (default key for it is X)
-In the options panel you will find a new toggle button for increasing the size of the cursor.
-Right click menus now have a close button.
-When it's raining you can catch some rain. (camping button)
-Entering the escape menu now pauses the game.
-We disabled the minimum resolution checking when resizing the window. (Linux users reported strange behavior)
-There was a rare bug with looping sounds. Now the sound system should properly stop every looping sound effect.

If you copy your saves folder please delete your old config file! Savegames are compatible with this release.

Balrum

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

The Curious Expedition - Hands On Early Alpha

by Redsocialknight, 04:44

There's a lot of back and for around here about what exactly constitutes an RPG. Upcoming roguelike The Curious Expedition -- which is exploration-based and as far as I can tell completely combat-free -- may push that boundary, but to me the player-directed story makes it qualify. Plus, wandering around on an 8-bit-looking world map. The feels. 

My first few moments with The Curious Expedition were almost misleadingly delightful. Set in the 19th century, I was told to pick from a selection of charming pixel renderings of historical figures [you can play as Madame Curie] and dropped into the world, with the only stated goal of exploring the strange new randomly generated land I had found myself in. It was welcoming, colourful, and hiding a whole host of things that wanted to kill me.

The Curious Expedition is all about exploring a randomly generated set of hex tiles, finding villages, caves, people and roaming animals to interact with... This person wants payment if you’re going to stay the night, but do you want to stay in the cave full of human remains? Is it safe to eat these strange fruits?

When an expedition begins, you’ll know the location of a single native village and the area immediately around your party. The needle of your compass is swinging wildly, indicating that you have no idea which way to go ... Every new tile that you uncover adds to you knowledge of the region and the more you learn, the more accurate your compass becomes.

The game just entered alpha -- privately the through its German developer, not on Steam for once -- so you can see if it falls off the edge of your own private map of the genre.

curious expedition screenshot

The Curious Expedition

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Roguelike
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Ultima - The (Not So Helpful) Legacy Of The Avatar

by Redsocialknight, 03:52

It's always a good time to reminisce about the Ultima series a little. But was Ultima's hero the Avatar always a good person? Over at PC Gamer, Richard Cobbet muses that actually, the Avatar was pretty much a walking disaster for everyone he ever met and every place he ever visited.

What I find fascinating about the Avatar is that [...] you can argue that despite saving the world on at least four separate occasions, the Quest Of The Avatar was the single worst thing that ever happened to Britannia. This is never really gone into in the games, where he quickly becomes a mix of Superman and mythical god [...] but looking back it's tough to argue that what it led to was worth the benefits.

In the first place, damn near everything that goes wrong is entirely, literally, the Avatar's fault. Never intentionally! There's no arguing that. 

Ultima is not a story about perfection. That's important. Lord British, despite being creator Richard Garriott's author avatar, is regularly wrong, often pig-headed, and at times, damn near blind. 
 
The Avatar too is, canonically, just a guy. He's from Texas. He makes mistakes. Between adventures in Britannia he comes back home and he lives a regular life [...] The Quest For The Avatar isn't an attempt to find a magical chosen one or a demigod scion or anything like that, but a role-model. Anyone could in theory be an Avatar [...] and even if most won't have what it takes, they can at least aspire to it - to step up, to be better, to actively live the Virtues instead of simply paying lip-service to them. [...] It's not about being the toughest, it's not about being chosen, it's about trying.
 
And Britannia... never gets that. At all. Instead, the Avatar becomes their equivalent of Superman, a symbol deified in a world that otherwise goes out of its way to avoid religion. His depictions grow more saintly, his victories become legends. But when he's gone, and as said, he can be gone for centuries at a time, does anyone truly follow in his footsteps or rise to the challenge? No. They figure that if something goes badly wrong enough, he'll be back. And he always is, even if usually to clean up the mess that he started. 
No news here, just a fan's fond look back, partly inspired by Shroud of the Avatar, Garriott's latest effort to revive the IP, now in very early access on Steam.

Ultima

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Sunday - November 30, 2014

Skyrim - 9 Skyrim Secrets You Probably Didn't Find

by Abharsair, 19:09

I'm probably one of three people on this planet who haven't played Skyrim yet (it's collecting dust in my Steam library, though), but IGN has an article with 9 Skyrim Secrets You Probably Didn't Find.

One of the more spooky secrets in Skyrim, you can find a Headless Horseman roaming the wilds on his spectral steed. He can be hard to locate, but if you manage to find and follow him to his final destination, you’ll find yourself at Hamvir’s Rest, where along with a number of undead enemies, you can find a coffin with a helmeted skull. Too Spooky For Me.

For more information, head over to IGN and find out which (if any) of the secrets you already know.

Skyrim

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

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