Monster's Den: Godfall
Monster's Den : Godfall Review
Forgottenlor crawls through the dungeons of Godfall to find out that there are some downsides to them
» Continue reading the article...
Maylander dived into ELEX to see if it is a game worthy of Piranha Bytes
» Read the article
No, keep it as it is
Oh yes, I'll show you...
I want Little Ponies
I don't care
Sunday - November 19, 2017
Unknown Realm - Kickstarter Update
Screeg spotted the November Kickstarter news for the C64-RPG Unknown Realm: The Siege Perilous (Chris Huelsbeck has agreed to do the full soundtrack for Unknown Realm!):
Unknown Realm November Update
Greetings from the Stirring Dragon Lair!
It’s been awhile since our last update and we know at least some of you have been craving an update about Unknown Realm! We had hoped to post this sooner, but there were a number of details that we needed to finalize before sharing some of the news items in this update. It’s been an interesting few months with a lot of ups and downs. We’re pretty much in full crunch mode around here, so if you don’t see us, it’s only because we’re focusing our efforts where they're most productive to making this game a reality.
State of the Realm
Production on the game has been going strong. Here are some highlights about our progress and some of the challenges we’ve been facing as we work to bring you Unknown Realm.
Music development for Unknown Realm has its own set of unique challenges, partly because nothing quite like this hybrid in-game soundtrack has been done before. For every track in the game, we have to have multiple arrangements of each song to accommodate the PC and C64 versions of the game as well as the final soundtrack version. Working with outside contractors adds a new layer of complications including tool support, documentation and communication that takes a lot of extra time. The development on the music has been slower than we planned, but we’re making good progress. One member of the Unknown Realm backer community has stepped up in a big way by writing a tool to streamline the music conversion process. This was a huge help! It’s so cool to have the support of backers who are passionate about the project and want to be part of the effort to bring this game to life.
And here’s some really great news: Despite the fact that we did not quite make our soundtrack stretch goal during our campaign, we’re excited to tell you that Chris Huelsbeck has agreed to do the full soundtrack for Unknown Realm! We’re working with Chris to make a one-of-a-kind soundtrack that will be a treat for both Chris Huelsbeck and RPG fans alike. This sound track will feature 8-bit chiptune versions of songs found in the game, as well as their modern arrangements.
Over the last few months, we’ve been chasing down all of our in-game content from backers. After many reminder emails, we’re still waiting on some backers…If you pledged for a reward that includes in-game content like a mercenary NPC or Tombstone and have not replied to your survey yet, pretty please, check your email and look for the survey from Stirring Dragon Games. Even though it's a little extra work on our end, it’s been a lot of fun to have backers participate in creating in-game content, especially for NPCs in the game. We love hearing the ideas our backers come up with and we're taking a lot of care to fit these ideas into the game world in a way that is respectful of the story and hopefully exciting for players to discover.
Our pen & ink artist had a lot going on this summer but he’s back to work now creating the last few illustrations for the 64 (yes, 64!) monsters that will be in the game. It’s been two and a half years since we started creating this bestiary with him and we’re excited to see this part of the project near completion.
Speaking of bestiary illustrations, here is one of our backer-designed monsters, called a Tigoth, which was designed as part of the “Create-a-Monster” reward on Megafounder. The Tigoth is a large, nocturnal, saber-toothed cat with a long, whip-like tail ending in a sharp blade of hardened bone.
Each monster illustration and their description can also be viewed in the in-game bestiary, which brings us to the Frontend (main menu) of Unknown Realm...
Frontend Sneak Peek
No respectable RPG should be without a nice frontend presentation and an authentically 8-bit RPG like Unknown Realm is no exception. Every element of this game, from our feelies to our user-interfaces has been carefully designed to keep your imagination immersed in the game from the moment you start it up. From the beginning we put a significant effort into designing a fun, interactive, and most importantly, immersive frontend filled with various things for you to explore. It's chalk full of so much content and music that you may get lost in it for hours. ;)
Here is a sneak peek of one of the features you will find in our frontend, the "Pixel-Ink" in-game bestiary that mirrors the beautifully illustrated pen & ink art of our physical bestiary book...
Game Production Status
At this point, we still have some outstanding assets that need to be created and integrated into the game including music and some portraits. If all goes well, we'll be on track for the game to hit an Alpha state in December. We are looking into finding one additional pixel artist to help out. If you are a pixel artist and interested in working with us, please contact us via email.
There are a lot of other details we want to share with you about this journey, but in the interest of saving time, we’re reserving a lot of those for the Making-Of book. Rest assured, the book will have a healthy dose of behind the scenes drama – everything from technical challenges, dealing with troublemakers, lessons learned the hard way, unexpected life issues and of course, the hazards of going into business with your spouse. ;-)
The Road Ahead
By this point, you have probably figured out that our release plans need to change somewhat from our initial estimated delivery dates and schedule. What we originally hoped to do was release the physical and digital editions concurrently. However, because of the nature of the project and the exhaustive testing required to ensure a bug-free game on cartridge, we're shifting our focus slightly in favor of a conventional digital-first release. This will not be an early access/beta release. Testing of the cartridge version will be going on concurrently with the digital release. Since we cannot patch or re-flash the cartridge once it's shipped, the digital release will give us one last opportunity to weed out any missed bugs or potential balance issues before we finalize the cartridge ROM. It's an extra precaution we feel we need to take to get this project right.
Our current plan is to release the game digitally in Spring 2018 and we anticipate shipping out physical rewards a few months after that. We considered trying to ship PC physical rewards separately to align with the digital release, but due to the high number of rewards shipping internationally, the freight costs for shipping C64 and PC separately would not be feasible for our budget. This was a really hard choice for us to make because it's not in line with what we originally wanted for this game, but sometimes compromises are necessary to make the product better.
As frustrating as it is to miss our original estimates, it would be so much worse to release a game that wasn’t ready to live up to the experience we’ve promised you. The important thing is that we will continue to put everything we have into developing this game and making it the game we all want to play.
That said, adjusting our schedule isn't all bad, we are taking advantage of the extra time to make your rewards even better than we originally planned. Which brings us to...
Old School RPGs Need Epic Traditional Art
We searched high and low to find an artist who could bring the Unknown Realm cover art to life in a manner worthy of its old school roots and now we’re thrilled to announce we are working with one of the best traditional fantasy art painters around to make this happen! Ted Nasmith is a world-renowned illustrator and traditional artist who has created illustrations for projects associated with The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, and Game of Thrones.
We are so excited to have him paint the Unknown Realm cover art for you guys because his unique style and dedication to the craft of traditional art are perfectly suited to bringing back all of those old school RPG feelings. This cover art will be used across all our digital formats and appear on the physical editions of Unknown Realm. Every backer ($19+) will be receiving a digital wallpaper version of the cover art and we’ll have posters available in the future as well.
Bringing back the authentic 8-bit RPG experience takes time, persistence and a lot of optimism in the face of tough odds. It wouldn’t be possible without you and we’re eternally grateful to each of our backers for your support, encouragement, understanding, and patience too!
Special thanks to those of you who’ve taken the time to comment with your support and understanding: you guys brighten our day and help us push through challenges (and fatigue). :-) We see how much you care about this game being done the right way and it means a lot to us! We’ve backed close to 50 Kickstarter projects ourselves over the years, so we’ve been in your shoes and we appreciate your understanding. We're excited to be making this game for you, and we’ll keep fighting with all we have to make it worth the wait!
If you ever have questions or want to get in touch, the best way to reach us is directly via email at [email protected]
Until next time!
-Laura & Bruce
Unknown RealmSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Walking Heavy - Review @ IGR
Review – Walking Heavy
Walking Heavy is, on the face of it, a basic isometric stealth game, elevated by its presentation. Its graphics are simple, but elegantly so, conveying a wealth of information while also creating a real sense of place with little more than square buildings and a few ambling stick figures.loading...
The story, such as it is: after a long holiday, you’re back on the job, eliminating rival drug suppliers whose trade in a new product, “Hype.” They’ve been interfering in your boss’s good old fashioned cocaine trade. Each procedurally generated level, then, opens with your train arriving in another indistinguishable British suburb. Find your man, sort him out, and make it back to the train station before the coppers find you, and Bob’s your uncle.
Simple but tense stealth action, grimy British neighborhoods, and gritty ambient music? Can’t go wrong, and the developer is already at work adding new game modes to increase its lifespan. Give Walking Heavy a butcher’s, and you’ll be proper chuffed.
General NewsSP/MP: Unknown
Release: In development
Call of Saregnar - Website live
Call of Saregnar
90's Old-School Looks
Call of Saregnar features a 90’s inspired low-poly 3D look with detailed handcrafted textures, while the characters you’ll encounter are made of thousands of frames of real photographed actors!
A Believable World
Saregnar lets you role-play through a deep and engaging story filled with murder, mystery, intrigue and suspense. The world is low in fantasy and magic is uncommon. You’ll be pleased to find that giant rats and slimes have been evicted from this universe.
Call of Saregnar challenges you to think and pay close attention to everything you read, because often that’s the only way to complete sidequests or even main objectives. There are no quest markers or objectives, only a quest log with your past conversations for reference.
Prepare for The Journey
Be sure to prepare for the journey ahead; Food and water, a good pair of boots, also blankets for those cold nights are essential. Also take care of your weapons by oiling the bowstrings, sharpen the swords and fix those dents in your armour. Preparation is the key for survival.
Freedom to Explore
Despite being a story-driven RPG, the world is always open for exploration, so there is nothing stopping you from exploring the whole map in the very first chapter!
While your characters’ attributes rarely change, their skills advance on a per-use basis. Skills can also be learned from a trainer or by reading a book.
In a land as rich as Merrentar, you will run into enemy ambushes, discover unique places, meet traveling merchants or bandits, perhaps wild creatures, a set of game tracks… all of these events are carefully hand-placed. We believe no RNG should ever replace the designer.
Battle through groups of intelligent enemies, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Take your time and evaluate each enemy for the best tactical winning strategy.
Magic From The Gods
There are 12 gods to please and gain their favour, each god being a source of unique magic spells. To gain divine favour, pray and give offerings in the form of money, food or other valuables, but mind you, not every deity can be easily pleased.
Although the game has fewer weapons and armours than the average RPG, each item is that much more detailed and fleshed out. Finding new equipment brings significant benefits as the difference between the old and new is now actually noticeable.
A Nostalgic Lo-Fi Soundtrack
Saregnar features a fantastic trip into nostalgia with music composed specifically for a Roland Sound Canvas SC-55.
Inspired by The Classics
Call of Saregnar is greatly inspired by the classic RPG Betrayal at Krondor, while also taking hints from Daggerfall, Might & Magic VI, RoA: Star Trail and other titles of the 90’s.
Call of SaregnarSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Nioh - Mod Enables Custom Resolutions
All you have to do in order to enable custom resolutions is download the mod and place the NiohResolution.exe to the root of the Nioh: Complete Edition game-directory. By default this would be C:\Program Files\Steam\steamapps\common\Nioh. You should then launch NiohResolution and follow the on-screen instructions.
Those interested can download the NiohResolution mod from here.
THQ Nordic - Acquires Experiment 101
@Gamasutra THQ Nordic has acquired Experiment 101 who are currently working on Biomutant.
The deal includes the development studio and all intellectual property rights to Biomutant, a post-apocalyptic action RPG scheduled to release on Xbox One, PS4, and PC in 2018.
THQ Nordic was already working with Experiment 101 as Biomutant's publisher, but the company said it couldn't ignore the "significant potential" shown by both the game and its development team.
"After the strong reception Biomutant received at its announcement at Gamescom 2017, we are excited to have been able to acquire Experiment 101 and Biomutant," explained THQ Nordic CEO, Lars Wingefors.
"Our aim is to build Biomutant into one of our major franchises. The recruitment of Stefan Ljungqvist and his talented team brings important new power to THQ Nordic.
"In addition to continue leading the Biomutant franchise, Stefan will advise on our strategy, future acquisitions and further game development projects."
Saturday - November 18, 2017
Star Traders: Frontiers - EA Version released
The Early Access version of Star Traders: Frontiers (formerly known as Star Traders 2) has been released:
Star Traders: Frontiers
Command your ship and crew as a space pirate, merchant, bounty hunter, and more in Star Traders: Frontiers – an epic space RPG from Trese Brothers Games. Venture forth into a massive open universe, rich with adventure and the lore of the Star Traders. Choose your path by assembling and commanding your custom crew and spaceship in a constantly evolving galaxy torn by internal strife, political intrigue, and alien threats. Will you fly as a pirate terrorizing shipping lanes, join the solar wars as a military captain, or track targets across the stars as a fearsome bounty hunter?
- Explore a rich, open universe: Discover endless procedurally-generated galactic maps, meet unique characters, and take on enemies to conquer the galaxy!
- Become an intergalactic captain: Take on the role of a spy, smuggler, explorer, pirate, merchant, bounty hunter, and more (21 jobs total)!
- Customize your own spaceship: Choose from more than 300 upgrades and build your very own vessel to venture across the vast reaches of space.
- Assemble and tailor a loyal crew: Assign talents and equip specialized gear for every spaceship crew member.
- Experience an ever-changing narrative: Decide to make friends or foes with other factions and influence political, economic, and personal vendettas.
First there was the Exodus – when survivors of a great war left the ruins of the Galactic Core behind in search of a new home in the stars. Scattered worlds were claimed on the fringe of the galaxy. Each pocket of survivors held on to an isolated set of worlds while trying to rebuild under the great law of Shalun. Three centuries later, technology has brought them back together again. Discovery of the hyperwarp has bridged what was once an unimaginable distance between far-flung colonies, long-lost families, and political factions.
With that reunification has come great economic prosperity. The hyperwarp reestablished the transportation of cargo, goods, and technologies between the quadrants – but it has also brought great strife. Political rivalries have been rekindled, blood has been shed in age-old feuds, and the fires of war have been stoked. Amidst the political infighting, a ruthless revolution is rising – and the fervent explorers of the hyperwarp have awoken something that was better left asleep.
Our very first game, Star Traders RPG, took hundreds of thousands of gamers on an interstellar adventure. Star Traders’ success and overwhelmingly positive reception helped to launch Trese Brothers Games. It was the adventures of our community’s star-crossed captains that put us on a trajectory to share more of our worlds, ideas, and dreams.
We set out to capture the loneliness, bravery, and camaraderie of people living together in a spaceship sailing across the stars. It is with great pride that after releasing four other games in the Star Traders universe, we’ve created a sequel to the original Star Traders RPG.
Step onto the bridge of your starship, take to the stars, and create your own story in Star Traders: Frontiers.
Star Traders: FrontiersSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
The Surge - A Walk in the Park Teaser
Farflame spotted a teaser trailer for the DLC A Walk in the Park:
The Surge: A Walk in the Park - Teaser Trailerloading...
The Surge: A Walk in the Park expansion showcased in a brand new Teaser Trailer
Survive raging mascots, insane exoskeleton workers and broken attractions across a corrupted theme park on December 5.
Hardcore action RPG The Surge is about to receive brand new content with a major new expansion! A Walk in the Park is coming December 5 to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC. Watch today’s Teaser Trailer to get a first glimpse of the amusement park-gone-wrong, CREO World!
The Surge brought players deep into the high-tech CREO industrial complex, overrun by deadly machines, rogue AI and deranged exoskeleton workers. A Walk in the Park gives players a breath of fresh air by taking them to an environment that’s more open and colorful, though no less deadly. CREO World is an amusement park built by CREO for its employees and their families. Forget your cravings for cotton candy – CREO World was not spared from the Surge. The entire park is a deadly trap, where roaming rescue teams have gone insane and robotic mascots patrol freely, patiently waiting for new visitors to offer a deadly welcome.
CREO World presents a wealth of fresh challenges for players. Originally created to celebrate CREO and its mission, the park is a radically different setting from the rest of the complex, full of branching paths and secrets to discover. Survive the raging mascots and explore the park's attractions, before taking on a fearsome boss in the devastated park. Through technical and spectacular fights, you will face this new threat, cutting and equipping 16 all-new weapons, sets of armor, and new implants to upgrade and further customize the way you want to play.
New players will also be able to embark on the ultimate The Surge experience with the Complete Edition, which will include the full game and all its DLCs, including A Walk in the Park. The Surge: Complete Edition and A Walk in the Park will be available December 5 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC. Preorders for the DLC and the Complete Edition are available on Steam right now, and on PS4 on November 21. The A Walk in the Park DLC will also be available for preorders on Xbox starting November 21.
The SurgeSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Stellar Tactics - Progress Update
The latest update for Stellar Tactics.
This weeks progress update. Directional shields, chaff, planetary material updates and targeting micro-menu. Please excuse the framerate - video was captured in the debugger. See the full article here -
Stellar TacticsSP/MP: Single + MP
Genre: Tactical RPG
Release: In development
Titan Quest - Titan Quest Ragnarok
About This Content
At long last, Titan Quest continues its epic journey through the world of antiquity. A mysterious threat calls the heroes of Hades to the uncharted lands of northern Europe, where new enemies await and new powers and treasures are waiting to be found!
This new expansion to the acclaimed Anniversary Edition of Titan Quest adds a fifth act of unprecedented scope, along with many new and requested features including new weapon types and a 10th Mastery for your characters to learn.
New story act with dozens of new quests
- Brave the realms of the Celts, the Northmen and the Asgardian gods in the largest act to date
- Revisit the other acts to find new items and secrets
New 10th Mastery
- Become a Runemaster, a magical warrior fighting with both, spells and weapons
- Combine newly learned with existing masteries for a total of 45 combinations
New experience curve
- Reach level 85 and maximize your character's potential
New weapons and gear
- Find new and powerful gear, from colorful Celtic shields to famous weapons of Germanic legend.
- New relics and charms for crafting, and a new option to improve even legendary items.
- New thrown weapons strike the balance between range and speed!
New Enemies and bosses
- From the denizens of Germany's dark forests to the forces of Asgard itself.
Improved character customization
- A wider variety of regional styles and color dyes
- Finally: wear pants!
Technical and QOL improvements
- New shaders and graphical effects
- Improved ragdoll physics
- Improved UI and combat feedback for total information
- Improved control customization
- Improved modding tools
Titan QuestSP/MP: Single + MP
Genre: Hack & Slash
Spellforce 3 - Free Beta
The free Spellforce 3 beta version is now available:
Play SpellForce 3 Beta
Welcome to the Free Preview version of SpellForce 3. This Beta will give you a first look and option to play on upcoming SpellForce 3.
Spellforce 3SP/MP: Single + MP
Release: In development
Friday - November 17, 2017
Endless Space 2 - Diplomacy Revamp
PCGamesN reports that Endless Space 2 got a diplomacy revamp and a free weekend:
Endless Space 2 gets a free weekend alongside a diplomacy revamp
Whether you’re an old hand at the strategic galactic opera of Endless Space 2 or you want to jump in for the for the first time, this week is full of good news for you. The game will be getting a free weekend alongside and a new free update.
The free weekend starts now, and will run through November 20 on Steam. If you like what you play, you can pick up your progress with half off of the game for the duration of the event.
But if you’re already in on Endless Space 2, the more relevant news is a free update called Galactic Statecraft. New diplomacy options will allow you to more easily resolve situations without bloodshed, and build stronger alliances with allies for more formidable bonuses.
Outcast: Second Contact - First Impressions & Review
PC Invasion has reviewed the game:
The original game impressed me so much in 1999. I loved it to bits. But I can’t help but feel a little disappointed with the outcome of Outcast – Second Contact. A complete rework of the original game would be worth the asking price ($30), but it’s just not been given the full makeover it truly deserves. That said, I would love for Appeal to be given the opportunity to create a sequel and revisit this fantastic world.
DSOG checked out Outcast: Second Contact:
In conclusion, we feel like Outcast – Second Contact is a game that only its die-hard fans will appreciate. And since those fans have already finished it, there is no point at all returning to it. The only reason would be to admire some breath-taking visuals. However, the game lacks such an ‘wow’ factor. Newcomers will find it hard sticking with it and that’s a shame because under the underwhelming visuals and its rough/stiff mechanics, Outcast – Second Contact is as great as the 1999 version!loading...
Outcast: Second ContactSP/MP: Single-player
Star Control: Origins - Fleet Battles Beta Begins
Star Control: Origins fleet battles beta is available now with a pre-order.
Star Control: Origins Fleet Battles Beta Begins Today
On the 25th anniversary of the release of Star Control II, the beta of a new Star Control game arrives
November 16, 2017 1:00:00 PM
Haven't pre-ordered yet? No problem!loading...
Star Control: OriginsSP/MP: Unknown
Release: In development
Obsidian Artist - Recreating first level of Dark Forces
DSOGaming reports that an artist for Obsidian is recreating the first level of Dark Forces in Unreal Engine 4.
Jason Lewis, Senior Environment Artist at Obsidian Entertainment, has been experimenting with Unreal Engine 4. Lewis is currently recreating the first level from the 1999 Star Wars game, Dark Forces, in Epic’s Engine and shared some comparison screenshots between the original and his WIP project. And the results are amazing.
What’s also cool is that Lewis has added a new starting area that wasn’t in the original game.
Kingdom Come - Ways to Complete a Mission
DSOGaming reports that Warhorse Studios has released a new trailer for Kingdom Come: Deliverance that shows different ways to complete a mission.
In this trailer, Lord Hanus has sent players on an important quest to investigate the Neuhof stable raid. In order to complete the mission, players can go all out and use the tip of their blade, or take advantage of the dialogue system, or the game’s stealth mechanics.
Kingdom ComeSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Julian Gollop - Where are the Lovecraftian Games?
In his column for PCGamer Julian Gollop asks where are all the Lovecraftian games?
In any game developer’s career there is always that game you wanted to make, but never got to make. And you still think is a great idea. And nobody else has done anything like it.
For me the ‘one that got away’ was a concept I prepared for MicroProse shortly after finishing work on the original UFO: Enemy Unknown / X-COM: UFO Defense in 1994. It was heavily inspired by the works of H. P. Lovecraft, set in the 1930s in an alternate version of history where renowned occultist Aleister Crowley plotted to take over the world by summoning monsters through an alternate dimension. (Crowley himself was a real, historical figure, a founder of the religion Thelema and a leading member of the Ordo Templi Orientis.)
Beamdog - Not Working on a Planescape Game
PCGamer reports that Beamdog are not working on a Planescape game.
"The Beamdog creative and art teams often explore concepts, pitches, and designs touching on different Dungeons & Dragons and unique settings. This was the case of the Planescape: Unravelled character concepts shown in the recently released Next Level documentary," Oster said in a statement.
"At any given time, there are a few of these exploration projects happening in different parts of the studio. They’re typically not shared outside of the company as they can be interpreted as a new project. We do these exploration projects as a way to find new ways to bring different ideas and creative styles to projects we’re working on. We’ve found it’s a great way to let the creative team stretch themselves and expand their skills. Occasionally, we return to these explorative projects and incorporate them into other things we’re working on."
Thursday - November 16, 2017
Kings and Heroes - Released
The online action RPG Kings and Heroes has been released:
Kings and Heroes
Kings and Heroes invites players into a huge fantasy world filled with open exploration and both hand-crafted and randomly generated dungeon adventures. A mix between a core RPG and a traditional MMORPG, Kings and Heroes, is an Online RPG where you can play solo, partner with a friend, or join a party to explore the massive map and immerse yourself in the world of Sundaria. With dungeons, crypts, caves and more, players will find themselves slaying foes and discovering long forgotten treasure while questing across the land.
Playable in both third-person view and first-person view, Kings and Heroes is packed with countless hours of fun for RPG and action fans looking for a mix of dungeon running and open world gameplay in a single game.
***This Game DOES NOT have a subscription fee and DOES NOT have any micro-transactions!***
Kings and HeroesSP/MP: Single + MP
Outcast: Second Contact - Review @ Eurogamer
Eurogamer has reviewed the remake of the action adventure Outcast: Second Contact:
Outcast - Second Contact review
It's back, ulukai people.
Although its augmentations are selective and skin deep, Outcast remains a generous and uniquely captivating game.
Initially turned off by its stock 1990s action game protagonist and fuzzy voxels, I came to appreciate Outcast rather late in life. At the time of its original release I craved titles that would put my fancy new GeForce 256 to good use, for which I was spoilt for choice: a new Dungeon Keeper was atop the PC hit parade, which, together with Hidden & Dangerous, System Shock 2 and Unreal Tournament, effortlessly outshined Outcast's dull palette.
It wasn't until a full 15 years later that I gave Outcast the attention it had long deserved. This was at the time of the v1.1 release, an understated - and still worthwhile - remaster that, in facilitating an outpouring of affectionate reader reviews across GOG and Steam, stirred in me old curiosities and a dormant sense of guilt at having dismissed the original game so easily.
For the most part Second Contact is a glorious remaster, essential for fans and a worthy introduction for newcomers who want to sample an open-world adventure that requires a bit of thought and patience. It's a notable effort for leaving much of the underlying game and it's 90s soul intact, while switching out the original graphics for visuals that, whole not bleeding edge, are a generational triple jump beyond even 2014's overdue update. One or two legacy features could have been dumped without taking the game too far out of its place in time, and some meaningful supplementary content would have been welcome, but it's only really the untouched soundscape that stands out as a missed opportunity to make Outcast feel truly refreshed and relevant.
Y'know, I almost wish I'd held on a few more years to play what is now the definitive edition of Outcast, but I realise now there's only so long you can hold out and 15 years was probably long enough. Which reminds me, I should probably get around to Final Fantasy 7 one of these days. I hear it's quite good.
Outcast: Second ContactSP/MP: Single-player
ELEX - Review @ Niche Gamer
Niche Gamer's Carl Batchelor understands how Piranha Bytes RPGs work:
Elex Review – It’s Gothic, Only Now With Laser Rifles
When Piranha Bytes released the original Gothic back in late 2001 here in North America, the era of open world CRPGs had just been kicked off by Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, and Gothic found itself lost in the hype that game generated. Though full of new ideas and even a few re-worked and improved upon old ones, Gothic had an unwieldy control system and clunky animations; remnants of its original status as an Xbox title meant for play on an under-powered console and controlled by a gamepad.
Regardless, Gothic found its niche with older gamers who appreciated the Ultima 7 inspired NPC interaction, the creative faction play, and the feeling of hopelessness that permeated both the game’s story and its lopsided combat difficulty. It harkened back to a time when CRPGs didn’t set out to make the player feel like a golden god and instead did everything in its power to humiliate and frighten the player as well as the main hero that you controlled.
With its only downsides being an awkward progression table and combat that comes with a steep learning curve, I was highly tempted to give Elex a 10. Though after comparing the game to the ultra-polished and masterfully balanced Witcher 3, I don’t feel comfortable putting it above CD Projekt’s masterpiece of CRPG design.
That being said, I still consider Elex one of the best CRPGs of this decade, and, if my 2nd trip through the game is as enjoyable as the first, it could be Piranha Bytes’ best game to date. As I’m playing through the game with the two factions I *didn’t* pick, I’ll be eagerly awaiting Elex 2.
The Verdict: 9
- Amazing graphics
- Tons of choice & consequence
- Moderately non-linear and highly replayable
- large, well designed open world
- A fun twist on the cliched post-apocalyptic style
- Lots of tactics to employ in combat makes late game battles very enjoyable
- Spend the first half of the game relatively under-powered
- Combat can be awkward at times, requires lots of patience and practice
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Warbanners - Review @ TechRaptor
TechRaptor has reviewed Warbanners:
The recent talk about difficulty and journalists is one that is baffling to me, as the point of a video game is, first and foremost, to always have fun with it. Difficulty is always hard to gauge because it’s subjective. Some players love the “Nintendo Hard” of yesterday, the aggravating, annoying insanity difficulties akin to Cuphead that offers the perfect placebo for perfection. Others prefer the more casual experience, the simplistic charms of a Super Mario Odyssey that offers a fun experience without being overly hardcore.
Amid all of this are the worst kind of games, the ones hard for hard sake; the ones designed, intentionally or not, for the player to fail. These types of games are often difficult to describe, but it often boils down to the game’s overall design working against the player by being overly unfair. A sad example of this, the indie game Warbanners, is textbook to this for various reasons- least of which the fact that I couldn’t even finish the last mission of the game without cheating due to these design flaws.
The good ideas are there, the tactics can be complex, but the overall design of Warbanners is completely broken to the point of souring the entire experience.
- Good In-Game Tactics...
- Various Missions Full of Choices...
- ...With Little Chance Of Using Tactics To Your Advantage
- ...Uninteresting, Linear Narrative
- Imbalanced Combat
- Poor In-Game Progression
- Wide Variance Of Randomness
- Forgettable Graphics and Music
Deep Sky Derelicts - Goes Early Access
Deep Sky Derelicts is coming to Early Access!
PRAGUE, Czech Republic, 15 November 2017 - 1C is proud to announce that Deep Sky Derelicts, an original combination of turn-based strategy and RPG, enriched with tactical card combat and popular rogue-like elements, will be released in Early Access on SteamTM and GOG.com later today, together with a new trailer and a batch of screenshots from the latest build. Release of the full, finalized game is scheduled for the end of Q1 2018.
After being successfully presented at Gamescom 2017, as well as nominated for a Best Indie Gamescom Award, development of Deep Sky Derelicts has been concentrated on delivering an appropriately polished build for the Early Access version of the game. With a good deal of content to get players engaged within the Deep Sky Sector for hours, the Early Access version will be a great starting point for all those interested in playing a part in the development of this indie title. Apart from being able to watch the game grow and mature into the final polished version, they can also report bugs, submit suggestions for development and get exclusive first-row access to any new, additional content. The most active fans will also have a chance to win cool prizes and even become a part of Deep Sky Derelicts forever!
The universe of Deep Sky Derelicts offers vast possibilities, even with its Early Access build. The Story Mode, though capped at Character Level 3 (out of a current max. of 10), and as yet unfinished, still offers several hours of exciting gameplay with high replay value, thanks to existing content variety and the procedural generation of levels and gear. The Early Access release also includes 6 character classes to build your squad from, 13 core equipment types and 17 extension types, which make for countless variations of actual weapons and tools to equip, over 70 different playable cards those pieces of gear can contain, and 12 missions to spice things up and give you a taste of DSD's story. And if that's not enough, there's always the Arena Mode, which provides a great way for players to test their tactical thinking, various weapons and attacks, as well as their luck during this battle-survival mode.
About the game"They drift in the void. Desolate but not empty."
In a grim dystopian future, where mankind has scattered across the galaxy and the human society has split into two distinct classes, you are a poor stateless outcast forced to live off scraps from derelict alien stations and ships in the outer space, yet you dream of becoming a privileged citizen and living on the surface of a habitable planet, enjoying non-synthetic air, water and food. A fabled alien derelict ship somewhere within the Deep Sky sector of space is your voucher for a citizenship and a promise of cozy life on a hospitable planet.
Hire and control a squad of up to three mercenary characters and set on to explore derelict ships within your reach from the scavenger's base. Searching the derelicts for loot and clues, you come across many friendly inhabitants and traders, but more often - various enemies. Challenge and defeat them in tactical turn-based fights, where randomly-drawn cards form your changing arsenal of combat actions, gain experience for yourself and your crew, loot dead bodies, resupply and upgrade once back at your base. The scavenger's home ship gives you the opportunity to heal and level-up your mercenaries, equip them, upgrade their gear or recharge energy for life support during missions.
- Fresh take on turn-based combat with cards
- Refined sci-fi comic book look & feel
- Endless customization options for characters and scavenging teams
- High replay value thanks to procedural generation of content
- Story of the human society divided within a dystopian universe
- Two game modes: story and arena
Here is the latest trailer of the game.
Deep Sky DerelictsSP/MP: Single-player
Release: In development
Kingmaker - Cleric Companion
Tristian is a cleric who embodies the virtues of his divine lady, the ever radiant Sarenrae. He is a gentle and kind person, always willing to help someone in distress. If things like this appeal to you:
According to the dogma of the Everlight, no being, no matter what heinous acts it committed, should be denied a chance of redemption. It is the way Tristian follows determinedly – even given the unpleasant experiences and disappointments he found during his travels across Golarion, Tristian still believes in redemption for all.
Tristian never preaches, and shares the teachings of Sarenrae only with those who ask to hear them. His faithfulness mixes well with his good-natured curiosity, inexhaustible kindness, and unfailing belief in the inherent good inside every living person - although you cannot help but notice a trace of sorrow in the young cleric's words.
Tristian always seeks to help those in need, but his most recent expedition to the Stolen Lands is one of the greatest tests of his spirit. Something wicked has taken root in the swamps and plains of this region – something that makes curses of all kinds much more potent and deadly. In search of answers Tristian unites with a bold adventurer who seeks to bring peace and order to the Stolen Lands. Should you rely on the cleric and invite him into your party, Tristian will look for the most practical way to help – he never preaches his beliefs if not asked to enlighten others about the teachings of Sarenrae.
Then he might be a good fit for your party.
As the video shows, Tristian also can put up a fight when needed. Don't forget to also check out the additional information in the Kickstarter update.
Release: In development
BattleTech - Campaign Gameplay
DSOGaming reports that Harebrained Schemes have released a gameplay video showing off the single player campaign for Battletech.
Harebrained Schemes has released a new video, showing 25 minutes of gameplay footage from BATTLETECH’s single player campaign. The game currently targets a 2018 release and this video will give you an idea of what you can expect from it.
Genre: Tactical RPG
Release: In development
The Sinking City - City Generation Demonstration
DSOGaming report on Frogwares demonstration of city generation which will feature in The Sinking City which is a lovecraftian open world detective game.
Frogwares has shared a video showing the City Generator tech demo for its upcoming Lovecraftian game, The Sinking City. With this tool, Frogwares is able to generate a rich, visually varied, open-world city in merely a few moments. What’s really cool here is that when The Sinking City releases, Frogwares is planning on sharing this tool with everyone.
As such, theoretically, players will be able to create their own cities with this tool. And if the game is open to more mods, it will provide an experience that extends beyond the game. Hear that EA? No need for microtransactions or anything like that.
General NewsSP/MP: Unknown
Release: In development
Wednesday - November 15, 2017
BattleTech - Preview
Game Watcher checked out BattleTech:
Firefly meets XCOM, with Mechs
Battletech is one of our most eagerly anticipated games. Developer Harebrained Schemes have already done stellar work with the Shadowrun series of RPGs, now they’re turning their attention to making a proper XCOM-like Battletech strategy game, something more in tune with the original tabletop game rather than a simulator/action game like MechWarrior. We’ve already tried out the Skirmish mode, and now HBS and publisher Paradox invited us to take a look and play a mission of the Single-Player Campaign. And boy, does it look great. We were excited before – now it’s a potential Game of the Year 2018 contender.
Genre: Tactical RPG
Release: In development
Non-RPG General News - Numantia Reviews
Farflame spotted two reviews for the strategy game Numantia:
PC Aficionado: Numantia Review - Score 6.4/10
Pixel Opinions: Numantia
Numantia is a solid game with a strong historical narrative and deep strategic gameplay. The battle graphics are somewhat above average for an indie game and the hand-drawn style of the story cinematics makes you want to keep playing just to see the art. At $21.99 CAD, I would suggest this for strategy lovers but would wait for a sale for the average gamer.