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Found 818 results

  1. You're on the run and every move counts. A shadow follows in your exact movements and pausing for too long to figure out a puzzle could prove deadly in the minimalist cat-and-mouse game Echoplex. Awarded Most Innovative Game and Best Art Direction at Lisboa Games Week IndieDome 2017, Echoplex offers players a set of 27 levels that weave their way through an FMV storyline full of mystery, intrigue, and horror. Since that showing last year, Output Games has revamped the user interface, added new puzzle mechanics, and tightened the gameplay. Echoplex puts players into the role of an engineer at the Clonochem Corporation manufacturing the strange and mysterious product Continuum. After calling a phone number he finds on a severed arm, he finds himself trapped in a simulation that continually loops and soon begins to fill with more versions of himself - until one of them begins to chase the original. That chase sits as the fundamental building block of Echoplex. Run over a switch that shuts a door? You might have to wait for the shadow following in your exact footsteps to trigger the switch again to move on. The founder and director at Output Games, Tyron van Vuuren had this to say about the unique FMV approach to storytelling: With Echoplex, we were looking for new ways to create a fully-realized world that carries emotional weight – something that only real actors can bring to a story. The game doesn’t come to a halt during cutscenes; instead, Echoplex allows players to get involved in the storytelling process – building their own interpretation of events as they piece things together. And although the cutscenes may look expensive, we had a very tight budget. Kudos to the visual effects team who worked hard to achieve those results. Echoplex is available beginning today for PC.
  2. You're on the run and every move counts. A shadow follows in your exact movements and pausing for too long to figure out a puzzle could prove deadly in the minimalist cat-and-mouse game Echoplex. Awarded Most Innovative Game and Best Art Direction at Lisboa Games Week IndieDome 2017, Echoplex offers players a set of 27 levels that weave their way through an FMV storyline full of mystery, intrigue, and horror. Since that showing last year, Output Games has revamped the user interface, added new puzzle mechanics, and tightened the gameplay. Echoplex puts players into the role of an engineer at the Clonochem Corporation manufacturing the strange and mysterious product Continuum. After calling a phone number he finds on a severed arm, he finds himself trapped in a simulation that continually loops and soon begins to fill with more versions of himself - until one of them begins to chase the original. That chase sits as the fundamental building block of Echoplex. Run over a switch that shuts a door? You might have to wait for the shadow following in your exact footsteps to trigger the switch again to move on. The founder and director at Output Games, Tyron van Vuuren had this to say about the unique FMV approach to storytelling: With Echoplex, we were looking for new ways to create a fully-realized world that carries emotional weight – something that only real actors can bring to a story. The game doesn’t come to a halt during cutscenes; instead, Echoplex allows players to get involved in the storytelling process – building their own interpretation of events as they piece things together. And although the cutscenes may look expensive, we had a very tight budget. Kudos to the visual effects team who worked hard to achieve those results. Echoplex is available beginning today for PC. View full article
  3. A Kickstarter that succeeded in 2015 will be paying off later this year when Shape of the World releases on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One - and now the Nintendo Switch, too. "I’m thrilled to officially announced that Shape of the World is coming to Nintendo Switch this year," said Hollow Tree Games' founder Stu Maxwell, "nobody on the team expected the game to look so nice on the Switch, we’re really happy with it… We can’t wait to see what everyone else thinks." Maxwell also works as a senior VFX artist at The Coalition, the studio behind Gears of War 4. Part first-person exploration and part surreal art piece, Shape of the World places players in a technicolor world filled with psychedelic flora and fauna. That world expands and grows as players progress through it. Waterfalls, mountains, mysterious monoliths, and more procedurally sprout from the surrounding terrain, making each foray into the world. Shape of the World is intended as a relaxing, stress-free experience. There won't be any enemies or challenges beyond the thrill of evergreen exploration. Players can interact with animals, plants, and the various ruins that dot the world to uncover its secrets. Hollow Tree Games has also included a soundtrack that follows progress through the procedurally generated world. Shape of the World will launch on PC, PS4, Switch, and Xbox One in the next few months.
  4. A Kickstarter that succeeded in 2015 will be paying off later this year when Shape of the World releases on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One - and now the Nintendo Switch, too. "I’m thrilled to officially announced that Shape of the World is coming to Nintendo Switch this year," said Hollow Tree Games' founder Stu Maxwell, "nobody on the team expected the game to look so nice on the Switch, we’re really happy with it… We can’t wait to see what everyone else thinks." Maxwell also works as a senior VFX artist at The Coalition, the studio behind Gears of War 4. Part first-person exploration and part surreal art piece, Shape of the World places players in a technicolor world filled with psychedelic flora and fauna. That world expands and grows as players progress through it. Waterfalls, mountains, mysterious monoliths, and more procedurally sprout from the surrounding terrain, making each foray into the world. Shape of the World is intended as a relaxing, stress-free experience. There won't be any enemies or challenges beyond the thrill of evergreen exploration. Players can interact with animals, plants, and the various ruins that dot the world to uncover its secrets. Hollow Tree Games has also included a soundtrack that follows progress through the procedurally generated world. Shape of the World will launch on PC, PS4, Switch, and Xbox One in the next few months. View full article
  5. Subset Games really knows how to design a solid game. FTL: Faster Than Light demonstrated that the team possesses the chops to create a game capable of sucking people in for dozens of hours with engaging strategy that often asks players to make tough decisions. Those tough decisions, the kind upon which hang life or death, form the central thesis of Into the Breach. Into the Breach takes place in a far flung future where Earth has flooded, reducing its landmass down to a handful of islands and unleashing the Vek, a collection of horrific kaiju from deep underground. Humanity created fleets of giant robots capable of fighting the Vek to defend the last cities on the planet, but it doesn't seem to be enough. Overwhelmed and on the brink of total annihilation, one last, desperate plan was conceived: Send one experienced mech pilot back through time armed with the knowledge to prevent humanity's doom and win the war against the Vek. The scenario, penned by Chris Avellone, the creative mind behind Baldur's Gate and Fallout: New Vegas, sets the stage for the roguelike elements of Into the Breach. When players manage to defeat the Vek, they are able to send a pilot of their choice to another timeline to continue the fight. Death, on the other hand, results in the last pilot to die engaging an emergency jump to a different timeline. That pilot brings all of the skills and experience they have acquired to the new timeline, giving future playthroughs an edge over the previous ones. It's a helpful feature, as players will need every tactical advantage they can get to make it through Into the Breach. While the decision making in FTL largely centered around preparing for battle, Into the Breach puts almost every decision into the turn-based tactics battles themselves. Each conflict with the kaiju takes five rounds. After those five rounds, the towering monstrosities retreat back into the dark depths from which they came. Players have two basic things to do during those precious few turns: Keep their mechs alive and prevent the kaiju from damaging cities. If a mech's health drops to zero, the pilot dies permanently. If a building takes damage, the power grid takes damage, too. Players lose the entire timeline if the power grid drops to zero hit points. These simple goals quickly become complicated by bonus objectives and map conditions. Each mission can grant reputation, which can be spent on various upgrades after completing an island, or power to replenish and reinforce the power grid's health and defenses. This leads to the player approaching each mission as potentially game-ending. Sure, perhaps using a rocket punch to kill that kaiju might accomplish an objective for reputation or save a friendly mech, but it will likely also damage the power grid bringing the timeline that much closer to failure. However, maybe that loss is worth it if you can get enough reputation to later purchase more power for the grid or maybe complete a bonus objective that provides more power. Each mech in the three machine team possesses different abilities that often do more than just straight damage. These abilities can push enemies, pull them, create a defensive shield, launch barriers, distribute damage in unique patterns, and much, much more. This leads to a delicate balancing act in battle, where every tool at the player's disposal must be employed to move enemies into positions where their attacks miss or hit one another in an effort to minimize damage to the power grid. One aspect unique to Into the Breach is that enemies move and prepare attacks before the player's turn. The game presents all information to players upfront. All attacks hit and do full damage. This allows players to sit back and plan their moves carefully while knowing what the outcome of their actions will be. Of course, that can lead players to make mistakes; something that can lead to absolute disaster in the space of a single turn. Subset included the option to reset a turn once per battle to give players some degree of leniency. While the tactical elements of Into the Breach outshine the competition, it stumbles when it comes to narrative. FTL: Faster Than Light allowed players to name their crews and contained numerous side stories and scenarios that tickled the imagination. Those decisions invested like a much larger game. Subset Games' sophomore outing ditches much of that. This leads Into the Breach to feel more sterile and empty with a world where the stakes aren't terribly dramatic. The cast of characters is composed of a handful of pilots and the four administrators of the remaining pockets of humanity. The pilots mostly speak in reaction to what's happening in battle with one-liners, remarking about how the battle went, or to give a final word to the player as they die. The administrators give comments at the close of every mission. None of that feels intimate; by the time the credits roll, the player does not know any of the characters beyond what stats they can give a mech. That's a shame, because one could imagine a version of Into the Breach where pilots have downtime together between battles to interact with one another and the administrators to show character development outside of their statistics. Chris Avellone is a great writer, one that I think excels at that kind of interaction, so the dearth of narrative outside of the overall scenario baffles me. Perhaps miscellaneous content wound up being cut to reduce development time or it created too much of a barrier between the player and the pitch-perfect strategy of the battles. Whatever the reason, the loss of that storytelling aspect hurts. Returning composer Ben Prunty hits a high note with his work in Into the Breach. The music manages to convey mood and tone quite effectively, adding an ever escalating sense of urgency without becoming too overbearing. Prunty strikes a balance that allows players to focus and plan while also encouraging decision-making with an encouraging forward momentum. It's great stuff to listen to if you want to make progress on a task and avoid distractions. Conclusion: Into the Breach combines the colossal conflicts of Godzilla and Pacific Rim with the turn-based tactics of Fire Emblem and Advance Wars. However, the unique spin on the formula that sets it apart from its gaming brethren put it in a class all its own. Instead of killing, the systems in the game have players employing tactics that create Rube Goldberg-like chain reactions to save the civilians of a doomed world. The satisfaction at achieving a flawless victory or pulling through to the end and successfully defeating the Vek cannot really be overstated. Into the Breach stands as a high point in strategy gaming that should be pulled out in game design classrooms for years to come. That being said, it's hard not to see the possibility for it to have been more. The lack of a compelling narrative beyond the minute-to-minute gameplay experience feels like a missed opportunity. Perhaps a future update or sequel could add something along those lines to bolster the perfect mechanics. If you have any regard for turn-based tactical games, Into the Breach is absolutely a must play game for you. Into the Breach is available now on PC.
  6. Subset Games really knows how to design a solid game. FTL: Faster Than Light demonstrated that the team possesses the chops to create a game capable of sucking people in for dozens of hours with engaging strategy that often asks players to make tough decisions. Those tough decisions, the kind upon which hang life or death, form the central thesis of Into the Breach. Into the Breach takes place in a far flung future where Earth has flooded, reducing its landmass down to a handful of islands and unleashing the Vek, a collection of horrific kaiju from deep underground. Humanity created fleets of giant robots capable of fighting the Vek to defend the last cities on the planet, but it doesn't seem to be enough. Overwhelmed and on the brink of total annihilation, one last, desperate plan was conceived: Send one experienced mech pilot back through time armed with the knowledge to prevent humanity's doom and win the war against the Vek. The scenario, penned by Chris Avellone, the creative mind behind Baldur's Gate and Fallout: New Vegas, sets the stage for the roguelike elements of Into the Breach. When players manage to defeat the Vek, they are able to send a pilot of their choice to another timeline to continue the fight. Death, on the other hand, results in the last pilot to die engaging an emergency jump to a different timeline. That pilot brings all of the skills and experience they have acquired to the new timeline, giving future playthroughs an edge over the previous ones. It's a helpful feature, as players will need every tactical advantage they can get to make it through Into the Breach. While the decision making in FTL largely centered around preparing for battle, Into the Breach puts almost every decision into the turn-based tactics battles themselves. Each conflict with the kaiju takes five rounds. After those five rounds, the towering monstrosities retreat back into the dark depths from which they came. Players have two basic things to do during those precious few turns: Keep their mechs alive and prevent the kaiju from damaging cities. If a mech's health drops to zero, the pilot dies permanently. If a building takes damage, the power grid takes damage, too. Players lose the entire timeline if the power grid drops to zero hit points. These simple goals quickly become complicated by bonus objectives and map conditions. Each mission can grant reputation, which can be spent on various upgrades after completing an island, or power to replenish and reinforce the power grid's health and defenses. This leads to the player approaching each mission as potentially game-ending. Sure, perhaps using a rocket punch to kill that kaiju might accomplish an objective for reputation or save a friendly mech, but it will likely also damage the power grid bringing the timeline that much closer to failure. However, maybe that loss is worth it if you can get enough reputation to later purchase more power for the grid or maybe complete a bonus objective that provides more power. Each mech in the three machine team possesses different abilities that often do more than just straight damage. These abilities can push enemies, pull them, create a defensive shield, launch barriers, distribute damage in unique patterns, and much, much more. This leads to a delicate balancing act in battle, where every tool at the player's disposal must be employed to move enemies into positions where their attacks miss or hit one another in an effort to minimize damage to the power grid. One aspect unique to Into the Breach is that enemies move and prepare attacks before the player's turn. The game presents all information to players upfront. All attacks hit and do full damage. This allows players to sit back and plan their moves carefully while knowing what the outcome of their actions will be. Of course, that can lead players to make mistakes; something that can lead to absolute disaster in the space of a single turn. Subset included the option to reset a turn once per battle to give players some degree of leniency. While the tactical elements of Into the Breach outshine the competition, it stumbles when it comes to narrative. FTL: Faster Than Light allowed players to name their crews and contained numerous side stories and scenarios that tickled the imagination. Those decisions invested like a much larger game. Subset Games' sophomore outing ditches much of that. This leads Into the Breach to feel more sterile and empty with a world where the stakes aren't terribly dramatic. The cast of characters is composed of a handful of pilots and the four administrators of the remaining pockets of humanity. The pilots mostly speak in reaction to what's happening in battle with one-liners, remarking about how the battle went, or to give a final word to the player as they die. The administrators give comments at the close of every mission. None of that feels intimate; by the time the credits roll, the player does not know any of the characters beyond what stats they can give a mech. That's a shame, because one could imagine a version of Into the Breach where pilots have downtime together between battles to interact with one another and the administrators to show character development outside of their statistics. Chris Avellone is a great writer, one that I think excels at that kind of interaction, so the dearth of narrative outside of the overall scenario baffles me. Perhaps miscellaneous content wound up being cut to reduce development time or it created too much of a barrier between the player and the pitch-perfect strategy of the battles. Whatever the reason, the loss of that storytelling aspect hurts. Returning composer Ben Prunty hits a high note with his work in Into the Breach. The music manages to convey mood and tone quite effectively, adding an ever escalating sense of urgency without becoming too overbearing. Prunty strikes a balance that allows players to focus and plan while also encouraging decision-making with an encouraging forward momentum. It's great stuff to listen to if you want to make progress on a task and avoid distractions. Conclusion: Into the Breach combines the colossal conflicts of Godzilla and Pacific Rim with the turn-based tactics of Fire Emblem and Advance Wars. However, the unique spin on the formula that sets it apart from its gaming brethren put it in a class all its own. Instead of killing, the systems in the game have players employing tactics that create Rube Goldberg-like chain reactions to save the civilians of a doomed world. The satisfaction at achieving a flawless victory or pulling through to the end and successfully defeating the Vek cannot really be overstated. Into the Breach stands as a high point in strategy gaming that should be pulled out in game design classrooms for years to come. That being said, it's hard not to see the possibility for it to have been more. The lack of a compelling narrative beyond the minute-to-minute gameplay experience feels like a missed opportunity. Perhaps a future update or sequel could add something along those lines to bolster the perfect mechanics. If you have any regard for turn-based tactical games, Into the Breach is absolutely a must play game for you. Into the Breach is available now on PC. View full article
  7. As we reported last August, Frontier Developments has been working on a RollerCoaster Tycoon-like park building sim based on Jurassic World. Now they have upped the number of Jeff Goldblums working on their game alongside them from 0 to 1. Jeff Goldblum will be taking up the mantle of Dr. Ian Malcolm in the upcoming theme park building sim Jurassic World Evolution. Frontier Developments, the studio behind Elite: Dangerous, Planet Coaster, and RollerCoaster Tycoon 3, managed to snag the actor to provide the guiding voice for their game tie-in with the upcoming Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. for PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox One Jurassic World Evolution will give players the opportunity to build Jurassic World for themselves and see if they can make sure that life doesn't find a way - all accompanied by the soothing voice of Jeff Goldblum. As Dr. Ian Malcolm, Goldblum will introduce tactical and moral choices that players will encounter as they build an ever larger park of ever more dangerous dinos. While the game itself focuses on park building, it does contain a story. The narrative will be separate from that of the Jurassic World films, though familiar faces will certainly make appearances. Jurassic World Evolution will release this summer for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One, likely around the theatrical release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom in June.
  8. As we reported last August, Frontier Developments has been working on a RollerCoaster Tycoon-like park building sim based on Jurassic World. Now they have upped the number of Jeff Goldblums working on their game alongside them from 0 to 1. Jeff Goldblum will be taking up the mantle of Dr. Ian Malcolm in the upcoming theme park building sim Jurassic World Evolution. Frontier Developments, the studio behind Elite: Dangerous, Planet Coaster, and RollerCoaster Tycoon 3, managed to snag the actor to provide the guiding voice for their game tie-in with the upcoming Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. for PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox One Jurassic World Evolution will give players the opportunity to build Jurassic World for themselves and see if they can make sure that life doesn't find a way - all accompanied by the soothing voice of Jeff Goldblum. As Dr. Ian Malcolm, Goldblum will introduce tactical and moral choices that players will encounter as they build an ever larger park of ever more dangerous dinos. While the game itself focuses on park building, it does contain a story. The narrative will be separate from that of the Jurassic World films, though familiar faces will certainly make appearances. Jurassic World Evolution will release this summer for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One, likely around the theatrical release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom in June. View full article
  9. The Long Dark presents players with an existential apocalypse and tasks them with surviving the wild in the face of an unending winter. Originally a Kickstarter project, The Long Dark has come a long way from its humble beginnings in 2013. Launched in 2014 as an Early Access title, the team at Hinterland has patiently improved and updated their studio's premier title up to and beyond its official release in 2017. The Long Dark still lacks its entire single-player campaign with two episodes of its five episode story mode released to date. That being said, it stands unique among the most prominent survival titles with its focus squarely on survival, stripping many of the distractions away from the gameplay and pitting players on an inexorable collision course with death. With such a long and transparent development process, there seems to be a wide range of opinions on The Long Dark. Can it stand as one of the best games period? Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker 'All I Want for Christmas Is Grandma's Sweet Elixir Soup' by Ridiculously Garrett (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03696) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available as well, so you can watch what we are talking about while we talk about it! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod You can follow Naomi on Twitter @NaomiNLugo where you can find her thoughts on Final Fantasy XV, the live-action adaptations of Death Note and Full Metal Alchemist, and her work. You can also find her work on Extra Life (that's here!) and Twin Cities Geek! New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday
  10. The Long Dark presents players with an existential apocalypse and tasks them with surviving the wild in the face of an unending winter. Originally a Kickstarter project, The Long Dark has come a long way from its humble beginnings in 2013. Launched in 2014 as an Early Access title, the team at Hinterland has patiently improved and updated their studio's premier title up to and beyond its official release in 2017. The Long Dark still lacks its entire single-player campaign with two episodes of its five episode story mode released to date. That being said, it stands unique among the most prominent survival titles with its focus squarely on survival, stripping many of the distractions away from the gameplay and pitting players on an inexorable collision course with death. With such a long and transparent development process, there seems to be a wide range of opinions on The Long Dark. Can it stand as one of the best games period? Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker 'All I Want for Christmas Is Grandma's Sweet Elixir Soup' by Ridiculously Garrett (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR03696) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available as well, so you can watch what we are talking about while we talk about it! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod You can follow Naomi on Twitter @NaomiNLugo where you can find her thoughts on Final Fantasy XV, the live-action adaptations of Death Note and Full Metal Alchemist, and her work. You can also find her work on Extra Life (that's here!) and Twin Cities Geek! New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday View full article
  11. Ever wanted to jump into a post-apocalyptic adventure that stars mutated humans that have taken on the characteristics of animals? Mutant Year Zero: Road To Eden seems like the kind of fever dream that's too creative for its own good, but Funcom and The Bearded Ladies are gearing up to make it a reality. Mutant Year Zero tells the story of a group of mutants trying to eek out a living after the fall of humanity. The motley crew of misfits must find Eden, a legendary paradise hidden among the ruins left by the human race. To do this, players will have to explore a rich and dangerous world filled with killer robots and rival mutant gangs. This can be done by using the real-time stealth systems to bypass potentially deadly encounters or by going in guns blazing with the hope that your team has enough firepower and tactical tricks to get the job done. Between missions, players will be able to upgrade their team, expand their forces with new recruits, and obtain new weapons. All of these downtime activities will take place in a refuge called Ark. What do you think of this? The stealthy option definitely feels like something the developers of Hitman would include in a game and the anthropomorphic animals kinda strike me as taking inspiration from Beyond Good and Evil. I'm really excited to see how all of these different ideas come together in a tangible package. There's no solid release date yet, but Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is slated for release later this year on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
  12. Ever wanted to jump into a post-apocalyptic adventure that stars mutated humans that have taken on the characteristics of animals? Mutant Year Zero: Road To Eden seems like the kind of fever dream that's too creative for its own good, but Funcom and The Bearded Ladies are gearing up to make it a reality. Mutant Year Zero tells the story of a group of mutants trying to eek out a living after the fall of humanity. The motley crew of misfits must find Eden, a legendary paradise hidden among the ruins left by the human race. To do this, players will have to explore a rich and dangerous world filled with killer robots and rival mutant gangs. This can be done by using the real-time stealth systems to bypass potentially deadly encounters or by going in guns blazing with the hope that your team has enough firepower and tactical tricks to get the job done. Between missions, players will be able to upgrade their team, expand their forces with new recruits, and obtain new weapons. All of these downtime activities will take place in a refuge called Ark. What do you think of this? The stealthy option definitely feels like something the developers of Hitman would include in a game and the anthropomorphic animals kinda strike me as taking inspiration from Beyond Good and Evil. I'm really excited to see how all of these different ideas come together in a tangible package. There's no solid release date yet, but Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is slated for release later this year on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. View full article
  13. Kongregate announced today that it would be offering its own alternative to online storefronts like Steam and Good Old Games. If successful, Kartridge could prove to be a great alternative for smaller devs looking to have more control over their stores and to stand out from the tides of shovelware that has come to plague larger services. Kongregate has been something of a low-key industry force for over a decade now. The service launched in 2007 and managed to capitalize on the tail end of the height of free online Flash gaming. Over the years, it has managed to leverage its position in the industry to bill itself as a stepping stone for up and coming devs looking to break into the mobile and PC gaming markets. It was able to do this by slowly expanding into mobile publishing and using their Gamestop connection to leverage Steam publishing deals. Kartridge offers developers a platform that has no listing fees and the power to tailor their storefronts to suit their game. It will also include the social features that Kongregate has attempted to implement over the years on their website. "Playing on Kartridge will immerse gamers in a deeply social world; they'll earn rewards for playing their favorite games, collect customized achievements, and connect with other gamers through chat, forums, and additional social features," said Kongregate in their announcement. "They’ll share tips and strategies within newfound communities as they level up their accounts, earning rewards along the way. The Kartridge platform was designed to be a unique and robust experience for players to enjoy, with the end goal of making the platform as fun as the games people are playing." Perhaps the most enticing feature of Kartridge will be its promise to curate the content that makes it onto their store. With Steam opening the floodgates several years ago, there's now an entire subsection of YouTube and Twitch that focuses entirely on the lazy, awful and sometimes seedy underbelly of the releases pouring onto the platform. Kartridge will use a combination of an editorial team and a series of algorithms to "help surface titles that are getting lost in other marketplaces and [...] help players find new content they didn't know they'd love." The service isn't quite live yet, but it will be entering its beta testing phase in the near future. People interested in seeing what it will be all about can sign up for entry to the beta here. The service is slated to launch sometime this summer.
  14. Kongregate announced today that it would be offering its own alternative to online storefronts like Steam and Good Old Games. If successful, Kartridge could prove to be a great alternative for smaller devs looking to have more control over their stores and to stand out from the tides of shovelware that has come to plague larger services. Kongregate has been something of a low-key industry force for over a decade now. The service launched in 2007 and managed to capitalize on the tail end of the height of free online Flash gaming. Over the years, it has managed to leverage its position in the industry to bill itself as a stepping stone for up and coming devs looking to break into the mobile and PC gaming markets. It was able to do this by slowly expanding into mobile publishing and using their Gamestop connection to leverage Steam publishing deals. Kartridge offers developers a platform that has no listing fees and the power to tailor their storefronts to suit their game. It will also include the social features that Kongregate has attempted to implement over the years on their website. "Playing on Kartridge will immerse gamers in a deeply social world; they'll earn rewards for playing their favorite games, collect customized achievements, and connect with other gamers through chat, forums, and additional social features," said Kongregate in their announcement. "They’ll share tips and strategies within newfound communities as they level up their accounts, earning rewards along the way. The Kartridge platform was designed to be a unique and robust experience for players to enjoy, with the end goal of making the platform as fun as the games people are playing." Perhaps the most enticing feature of Kartridge will be its promise to curate the content that makes it onto their store. With Steam opening the floodgates several years ago, there's now an entire subsection of YouTube and Twitch that focuses entirely on the lazy, awful and sometimes seedy underbelly of the releases pouring onto the platform. Kartridge will use a combination of an editorial team and a series of algorithms to "help surface titles that are getting lost in other marketplaces and [...] help players find new content they didn't know they'd love." The service isn't quite live yet, but it will be entering its beta testing phase in the near future. People interested in seeing what it will be all about can sign up for entry to the beta here. The service is slated to launch sometime this summer. View full article
  15. The Mortal Kombat series has been one of the pillars of the fighting game scene since it rose to prominence in the arcades of the early 90s. By 2011, the series had been flagging after a series of mediocre spin-offs and main entries. With the dissolution of Midway, things were grim. However, series creator Ed Boon wasn't ready to be done with quite yet. He managed to create a game that encapsulated the entire series up until that point, bringing together characters and plots that had long become too convoluted for words and unifying them into one package with a modern shine that brought Mortal Kombat into a new era of prosperity and success. Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Mortal Kombat 3 'Mortal Konfrontation' by The Dual Dragons (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR02279) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available as well, so you can watch what we are talking about while we talk about it! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod You can follow Marcus on Twitter @MarcusStewart7 where you can find his thoughts on Dragon Ball Super, wrestling, and video games! He also writes at Marcus Writes About Games, Extra Life (hey, that's here!), and hosts Carving Gaming Rushmores. New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday
  16. The Mortal Kombat series has been one of the pillars of the fighting game scene since it rose to prominence in the arcades of the early 90s. By 2011, the series had been flagging after a series of mediocre spin-offs and main entries. With the dissolution of Midway, things were grim. However, series creator Ed Boon wasn't ready to be done with quite yet. He managed to create a game that encapsulated the entire series up until that point, bringing together characters and plots that had long become too convoluted for words and unifying them into one package with a modern shine that brought Mortal Kombat into a new era of prosperity and success. Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative. Outro music: Mortal Kombat 3 'Mortal Konfrontation' by The Dual Dragons (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR02279) You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is available as well, so you can watch what we are talking about while we talk about it! If you want to have your opinion heard on air, share your opinion in the comments, follow the show on Twitter, and participate in the weekly polls: @BestGamesPeriod You can follow Marcus on Twitter @MarcusStewart7 where you can find his thoughts on Dragon Ball Super, wrestling, and video games! He also writes at Marcus Writes About Games, Extra Life (hey, that's here!), and hosts Carving Gaming Rushmores. New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday View full article
  17. Grinding Gear Games' Path of Exile has long been one of the low-key hits of the PC world and, more recently, the Xbox One console with its Fall of Oriath expansion. The Diablo-like free-to-play game has amassed a following of over 13 million players and its expansions have received accolades. The Bestiary expansion released today aims to continue that growth with a solid release filled with features and content for players to enjoy. Bestiary adds about 300 hunts that players can complete to capture dangerous creatures that range across the continent of Wraeclast. these monsters can then be used to forge new gear as players make progress on their hunts and climb the ladder of the Bestiary Challenge League. The League refreshes the economy of Path of Exile and provides a number of new mechanics designed to hook new players and reel in those returning to check out the changes. The full hunt roster consists of about 250 vicious creatures and 40 that have transcended the level of dangerous and become legends in their own right. As players capture each of these beasts, they will be placed in a private menagerie, a zoo of sorts. Players can then use the animals in the zoo to access the new beastcrafting mechanic that allows players to fight their captured animals and combine them into powerful new items. Some special fights against powerful spiritual entities await those who approach the end-game of Bestiary and combine the right animals. A whole slew of items and upgrades have made their way into the game alongside rebalanced and reworked Ascendancy Classes. Path of Exile: Bestiary is now available on PC and will be coming to Xbox One next week.
  18. Grinding Gear Games' Path of Exile has long been one of the low-key hits of the PC world and, more recently, the Xbox One console with its Fall of Oriath expansion. The Diablo-like free-to-play game has amassed a following of over 13 million players and its expansions have received accolades. The Bestiary expansion released today aims to continue that growth with a solid release filled with features and content for players to enjoy. Bestiary adds about 300 hunts that players can complete to capture dangerous creatures that range across the continent of Wraeclast. these monsters can then be used to forge new gear as players make progress on their hunts and climb the ladder of the Bestiary Challenge League. The League refreshes the economy of Path of Exile and provides a number of new mechanics designed to hook new players and reel in those returning to check out the changes. The full hunt roster consists of about 250 vicious creatures and 40 that have transcended the level of dangerous and become legends in their own right. As players capture each of these beasts, they will be placed in a private menagerie, a zoo of sorts. Players can then use the animals in the zoo to access the new beastcrafting mechanic that allows players to fight their captured animals and combine them into powerful new items. Some special fights against powerful spiritual entities await those who approach the end-game of Bestiary and combine the right animals. A whole slew of items and upgrades have made their way into the game alongside rebalanced and reworked Ascendancy Classes. Path of Exile: Bestiary is now available on PC and will be coming to Xbox One next week. View full article
  19. Overwatch has been teasing a new hero for a few days now. Following the recent cosmetics update Blizzard put out a short story update to the Overwatch lore vault. The new addition detailed a mission gone awry that had resulted in a severely injured Torbjörn rescued by Reinhardt. The aftermath of Reinhardt's heroism resulted in a letter penned by Torbjörn to his wife Ingrid. The letter reassures Ingrid that he made it out of harm's way and will be coming home soon... and that Reinhardt will be the one to name their daughter. That daughter is the new hero joining Overwatch: Brigitte Lindholm. Brigitte's abilities haven't been detailed, but from her new origin video we can guess that she will fit into a hardy support character meant to heal or reinforce allies on the battlefield while also able to take some damage by herself. No release date has been given for Brigitte's update, but players can expect to see her fighting for Overwatch in the near future.
  20. Overwatch has been teasing a new hero for a few days now. Following the recent cosmetics update Blizzard put out a short story update to the Overwatch lore vault. The new addition detailed a mission gone awry that had resulted in a severely injured Torbjörn rescued by Reinhardt. The aftermath of Reinhardt's heroism resulted in a letter penned by Torbjörn to his wife Ingrid. The letter reassures Ingrid that he made it out of harm's way and will be coming home soon... and that Reinhardt will be the one to name their daughter. That daughter is the new hero joining Overwatch: Brigitte Lindholm. Brigitte's abilities haven't been detailed, but from her new origin video we can guess that she will fit into a hardy support character meant to heal or reinforce allies on the battlefield while also able to take some damage by herself. No release date has been given for Brigitte's update, but players can expect to see her fighting for Overwatch in the near future. View full article
  21. A new VR game releasing today that pits players against a horde of increasingly silly zombies. Your only weapons? Your bare hands and anything else that might possibly be thrown as a projectile. Players will have to defend themselves by throwing items at the encroaching zombie horde - hopefully driving them back from a variety of ridiculous locations. In Throw Anything, players are able to grab items in their environment to appropriate them as thrown weapons. Of course, players might run short on throwables and might be forced to resort to breaking apart large items in their vicinity, or even use the NPCs around them in a pinch! The Early Access game launching on Steam today will include five levels for players to master. These levels are filled with zombies, four mid bosses, and five intimidating main bosses to overcome. Kalev Jung, the CEO of developer VisualLight released a statement saying, “Throw Anything is not for the faint of heart. Action tower defense takes on a whole new meaning in VR! Suddenly, the threat is right in front of you – and you need to be quick on your feet to avoid getting your face eaten.” Throw Anything will be available for HTC Vive starting today via Steam Early Access with PSVR and Oculus Rift support coming later this year.
  22. A new VR game releasing today that pits players against a horde of increasingly silly zombies. Your only weapons? Your bare hands and anything else that might possibly be thrown as a projectile. Players will have to defend themselves by throwing items at the encroaching zombie horde - hopefully driving them back from a variety of ridiculous locations. In Throw Anything, players are able to grab items in their environment to appropriate them as thrown weapons. Of course, players might run short on throwables and might be forced to resort to breaking apart large items in their vicinity, or even use the NPCs around them in a pinch! The Early Access game launching on Steam today will include five levels for players to master. These levels are filled with zombies, four mid bosses, and five intimidating main bosses to overcome. Kalev Jung, the CEO of developer VisualLight released a statement saying, “Throw Anything is not for the faint of heart. Action tower defense takes on a whole new meaning in VR! Suddenly, the threat is right in front of you – and you need to be quick on your feet to avoid getting your face eaten.” Throw Anything will be available for HTC Vive starting today via Steam Early Access with PSVR and Oculus Rift support coming later this year. View full article
  23. Inkle has made a name for itself in the mobile world with it's branching narrative games. The Sorcery! series wove a tale of blades and blood while 80 Days adapted Jules Verne's Around the World in 80 Days into a choose-your-own-adventure game. All of these were hailed as some of the finest narrative adventures to be had on mobile with 80 Days garnering Time Magazine's game of the year for 2014. Now, they have announced their first project that will head to the PlayStation 4 which will mark their first foray into the realm of consoles. Heaven's Vault stars Aliya Elasra, an archaeologist on a quest to translate a long lost language and unlock the secrets of The Nebula, a collection of far-flung moons. With the help of her robo-buddy Six, Aliya and the player are free to navigate through The Nebula and pursue its various mysteries. The central hook of Heaven's Vault centers on the translation of the alien script. Using context clues in the environment and some imagination, players will be able to come up with a variety of meanings for the symbols they encounter in various ruins across The Nebula. Every interpretation Aliya makes will have consequences, branching the story with each attempt to decipher what significance the ancient ruins might have once held. Inkle has stated that part of the game will be never being sure that your translation is the correct one. Heaven's Vault will also feature a large cast of characters who react to the different interpretations Aliya makes and also how she interacts with them. These characters are capable of kindness, cruelty, and guile. They'll remember if she's a thief or a liar or if she treats them well. Heaven's Vault will release on PlayStation 4 and PC sometime later this year.
  24. Inkle has made a name for itself in the mobile world with it's branching narrative games. The Sorcery! series wove a tale of blades and blood while 80 Days adapted Jules Verne's Around the World in 80 Days into a choose-your-own-adventure game. All of these were hailed as some of the finest narrative adventures to be had on mobile with 80 Days garnering Time Magazine's game of the year for 2014. Now, they have announced their first project that will head to the PlayStation 4 which will mark their first foray into the realm of consoles. Heaven's Vault stars Aliya Elasra, an archaeologist on a quest to translate a long lost language and unlock the secrets of The Nebula, a collection of far-flung moons. With the help of her robo-buddy Six, Aliya and the player are free to navigate through The Nebula and pursue its various mysteries. The central hook of Heaven's Vault centers on the translation of the alien script. Using context clues in the environment and some imagination, players will be able to come up with a variety of meanings for the symbols they encounter in various ruins across The Nebula. Every interpretation Aliya makes will have consequences, branching the story with each attempt to decipher what significance the ancient ruins might have once held. Inkle has stated that part of the game will be never being sure that your translation is the correct one. Heaven's Vault will also feature a large cast of characters who react to the different interpretations Aliya makes and also how she interacts with them. These characters are capable of kindness, cruelty, and guile. They'll remember if she's a thief or a liar or if she treats them well. Heaven's Vault will release on PlayStation 4 and PC sometime later this year. View full article
  25. One of the greatest games of all time has finally been made available on PC. Square Enix surprised everyone with the quiet release of Chrono Trigger today, which until now had only been released on the Super Nintendo, Nintendo DS, and mobile devices. The version now available on Steam for $15 combines the additional content and tweaks from the DS and mobile versions of the role-playing classic and puts them into one, largely unaltered package. For those worried about unwelcome graphical updates, don't worry - it seems to be a port of the iOS version of the game. New additions have been added, however. Some graphics have been modified along with some updates to the sound. The most welcome changes, though, are an autosave feature and controller support for those looking for a more retro feel while playing the game. This feels long overdue, but it's fantastic that finally a huge new group of people can enjoy this phenomenal time-hopping adventure.
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