This year has been an interesting one for those of us that work closely with PR folks. To start things out, we had the Redner/DNF fiasco that resulted in Jim’s termination from 2K. Jim called out Ars Technica and their review of DNF, after which he alluded to blacklisting the publication. While it wasn’t an ideal situation, Jim was trying to put it all into his support for his client’s product.I know this for a fact since we have worked with Jim Redner ourselves and can confirm he is a classy guy that will do everything he can to promote his client’s product. Jim handled his situation with class, and other than a few odd remarks on occasion, the media has pretty much put this one behind them.
Then there was the DJ Keemstar/FortressCraft abomination that littered twitter and youtube with filth. DJ Keemstar is an internet troll, famous for recording games of Halo 3 where he teamkills players and “talks trash” (see: acts like a 12 year old). Somehow DJ Arcas found it appropriate to put Keemstar in charge of PR, where he threatened Machinima and also managed to attempt to insult Notch, the creator of the game his was ripping off. After FortressCraft’s buggy launch, many reviewers and media outlets reported on the sub par game. We did this too, Keemstar responded with a call to arms for his followers to attack our site and hilarity ensued. FortressCraft still sells well on XBLIG but from a media level, most sites are done with anything related to it.
Both of these issues were regarding a PR companies reaction to media but there is a special spot in PR hell for those people that attack the consumer, yeah the very same people that they should be winning over. Recently, Ocean Marketing (no link, that’s his goal) had a run in with a few upset consumers. The most public of these was the string of emails that Penny Arcade brought up on their site. In the email exchange, a customer tries to get information on when they should be receiving their preordered controllers, only to be brushed off by Ocean Marketing. The situation escalated and eventually Kotaku, Dtoid, Penny Arcade and others were brought into the fold. Mike from PA got involved and Ocean Marketing continued to do what they do best, be douche bags (or more so, a singular douche bag). The whole exchange is available on PA’s site, you should take a look. After those events took place, Ocean Marketing took the battle to Twitter, calling IGN’s executive editor names and playing the victim.
The truth is this: Paul Christoforo (Ocean Marketing) is an asshole, everything wrong with PR and poison to a company that is behind a controller that is supposed to do great things for gamers with disabilities. Now, because of Paul’s incompetent yammering and venomous behavior, many consumers may avoid the Avenger altogether. People have already taken to Amazon to give the controller a plethora of 1-star votes, which doesn’t hurt anyone other than David Kotkin (the creator of the Avenger). Some would argue that Kotkin is getting what he deserves, as Paul has been documented on the internet for nearly a year, going after consumers with bi-polar rants. While it isn’t a solid business decision, Kotkin was likely working with what he had available (at least I would hope so). Kotkin has since removed Paul and his PR/Customer Service from his company, but the damage may already done.
Maybe we will get that cake the third time around...
By now, we all should have played one of the two Portals. If you haven’t, one of the few main characters is a robot named GLaDOS. Well, the women who voiced her is Ellen McLain. Her husband has a twitter account, found here: http://twitter.com/#!/johnpatricklowr, stated that “Ellen is going Tuesday for a new game and more Portal work.”. And he even is tweeting a lot about how him and his wife are doing a lot of voice work.
Now, this confirms some sort of work for Portal, does this mean we can expect a Portal 3? Or, is Valve just going to dish out some DLC for Portal, and work on a different game, perhaps one that involves Teams and Fortresses, or possibly even…Half Life 3. Now, let’s not get ourselves to worked up, even if Valve is making a new Half Life, or Portal, doesn’t mean we will see it any day soon. Let’s just keep our fingers crossed.
Titles rated T (Teen) have content that may be suitable for ages 13 and older. Titles in this category may contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling, and/or infrequent use of strong language.
By now you have all read those reviews out there: “Brink 2/5!” or “Brink plays a lot like Team Fortress 2, if you took all the fun out”. Those of us that received early review copies of the game seemed to hold the game in low regard but Gamespot did something that I entirely respect. They decided to wait a bit until after launch for the day one patch so they could play a consumer product. That noble behavior inspired me to spend some more time with Brink myself, Gaming Irresponsibly apologizes for the delay with the review but like some of fellow publications, we just needed more time.
Who does the tattooing for these guys?
Before we even get much into the game, there is something that readers need to understand, Brink IS NOT your standard FPS. Game play hinges on the team based element. You will find that your experience changes based on the people, or lack thereof, you are playing with. Splash Damage tried to create a world that would support team based combat a la Team Fortress 2 or Monday Night Combat, so there is definitely no room for Rambo in matches. The character customization was a huge selling point as well and as I discovered there are a few interesting facts about this feature…
The team element in Brink is it’s defining feature, and even when playing the “Campaign” mode, the game simulates a team based skirmish. Skirmishes are set so that each round one team is on offense while the other is on defense, with different goals determining the success or failure of the mission. With 8 on 8 combat, it is up to you to select the right job for your character mid combat to complete the required objectives for victory. The problem with this feature is there are not too many checks and balances in place to keep players in the right classes. For example, I played a match where the primary objective was to hack a computer. I jumped into the Engineer class and began to defend the objective while waiting for an Operative to show up. Eventually the other members of my team showed up to help me defend and to my surprise we didn’t have one Operative in our ranks. The solution that the game gives you is the many command posts scattered throughout the maps. These allow you to change your class on the fly but they can also be difficult to get to depending on your team. Things get really dicey when the AI element gets involved, I opened a few shortcuts only to watch my team run right into harms way. Or even better yet, the AI on both sides absolutely loves to rush head on right at each other. That gets irritating when your AI partner is holding the match ending objective.
A realistic costume that looks gritty without the use of spandex.
When Brink was announced and I was very excited to hear about the class customization and about all the different archetypes. However upon playing the game, most of these features are the equivalent of dressing up a doll. There are two major features that impact the way your character plays, but gear and clothes don’t do anything but make your character look a bit different. The two features that allows you to change your character’s style are the body type and abilities. The 3 body types impact how the S.M.A.R.T. system works for you as well. Average body characters take a moderate amount of damage but also can carry most weapons and climb most services. Large body characters are tanks, they are slow, take tons of damage and can barely make use of any benefits from the S.M.A.R.T. system. Finally, you have the light body type. These guys are the fastest characters available but also take the least amount of damage, meaning you will get dropped quick if you stop moving. What really makes light bodied characters special is that the S.M.A.R.T. system feels the closest to parkour with them. Running up walls and jumping off of them to reach areas that are not normally accessible to you and your team comes in very handy, especially when playing on the defense. The other feature that allows for customization are abilities. Selecting different abilities can allow you to perform differently in each class as well as augment a few standard facets as well. Brink has the right idea with this plan but truthfully, I already got to level 10 without spending one ability point or buying and customizing one weapon. The feature is important but it isn’t absolutely necessary.
The S.M.A.R.T. system stands for: Smooth Movement Across Random Terrain; when rushing to a goal, it comes in handy. Ledges and small holes in walls can all be important tools to the movement system. This feature itself is pretty cool since all your character’s movements feel mostly realistic. Slide down something, expect to see your hand come out to push you off the floor to get back up. Vault over a railing to get to the floor below or climb up an overhang to save some time, movement is by far the most dynamic feature in Brink.
Dirt and blood on your face always makes you look a little more fearsome.
The graphics and audio are a mixed bag. Characters really remind me of Time Splitters, sporting deformed body types and maps lack a fair amount of luster. Now there are not an overwhelming amount of graphical errors per se, and after spending some time with the game, the simplistic graphic style suits the gameplay appropriately. I did however encounter some audio errors during gameplay. This was the first game that made my headphones actually clip, an error that I am still working to troubleshoot. There are many different things that can happen at one time, so possibly the game just isn’t set up for the headphones. I did really like the audio cues that characters use though, switch to a class that is needed to complete an objective and start running towards your goal and you will hear your character radio in his plans to the rest of the team. Also, while your character sends an audio cue, you can get an idea if they are in the clear or not by hearing gunfire over the radio.
Seriously, who inks these guys?!
Brink is absolutely a mixed bag. If you are looking for a FPS that is 95% multiplayer and is amazingly fun to play together with a good team, this really may be your game. Game experiences will change person to person simply by the style they play. A great example of this is the fact that you actually get more points for offering support to your teammates that actually killing someone. To add to that, each class offers some sort of support for their team as well. Now the lack of an overabundance of maps and the simplistic defend and attack gametypes can be a big put-off for some, but once again, the game is really designed to be an enjoyable multiplayer experience. My biggest pet peeve about the game comes down to the lack of in game stats. There is an overview at the end of a match but nothing that you can track numerically. Well, not unless you go to the website and put in your unique code.
Considering everything about Brink, we’ve decided to give it a 7/10. The game has a ton of promise but doesn’t capitalize on everything immediately. What redeems Brink is the highly enjoyable multiplayer experience (when things go right) and a vast amount of customization that is available. I highly recommend you rent the title if you are unsure, since it isn’t going to be the right game for all FPS fans.
Before there was Minecraft or even Infiniminer, there was a game called Dwarf Fortress. It’s not pretty, and it isn’t for the feint of heart. The cult following it originally established has grown larger over the years – even now the official forums of Bay 12 have 2244739 Posts in 83450 Topics by 31334 Members.
Reviewing a game like this is difficult because it attracts a certain type of gamer – namely, the truly hardcore gamer. When I say this, I don’t mean the console variety that screams into the microphone during shooter games, and I am not referring to the rpg fanatics that begin to lose themselves in their virtual worlds. This particular type of gamer is the type that enjoys “Nightmare mode” in gaming or plays things on increased levels of difficulty because it brings them more satisfaction. If these things don’t appeal to you, than this game may not be something you’ll dive into.
The learning curve needs to be mentioned. Dwarf Fortress, or “DF”, is nearly impossible to simply begin without research. Like Minecraft, you will likely need a wiki or a tutorial to get started and get your bearings.
As everything begins, your world is generated. This process takes a good deal of time – the game doesn’t just generate landscape, but it generates a complete and unique history for your individual world. As you watch, thousands of years are passing, and heroes rise and fall.
Unless you have modified the graphics of the game, you will see all of this happening as a representation of ACSII art. It’s in color, but it will require a lot of understanding and imagination before you will really see what is going on. For a better representation, many players will download alternative versions or modifications.
The gameplay itself can only be judged once a player understands what they’re doing and how to control each of their dwarves. When you begin the game, you will need to tell each of them what to do and assign different jobs for them to master. They will require food and water to survive, but these are simply the basics.
Farming, brewing, fishing and mining are some of the basic skills that dwarves will be able to immediately accomplish. As they practice, they will increase in skill level and proficiency overall. There will be a consistent need for basic materials such as wood and various types of stone, and what is available to you will be completely randomized by your given world. Aside from games more similar to Rogue, true randomization is hard to come by. In this respect, Dwarf Fortress excels in amazing ways.
The commands are given though the keyboard. Before long, the combinations of keys to assign tasks will become second nature. There is no way to “win” the game – it is almost simply about survival and creating a prosperous civilization for your new dwarven family. As you progress, certain characters will need to be recognized and promoted into various roles such as “Mayor”, “Sheriff”, or “Captain of the Guard”. While time goes on, new dwarves will also appear to join your tribe – immediately, you will need to care for them and utilize them to the best of your ability.
If you’re lucky, you tribe won’t expire too early. You delve deeper into the mountains and explore to reveal new materials and riches while being sure to defend your fortress against the threat of attack from monsters. Eventually you will need to create a functional army that works in shifts to protect your civilization.
Because this game is almost a simulation in this mode, and has a very specific type of player, it’s difficult to judge with an overall score. If I’m forced to attribute a number to the game, I would give it a 6/10 for more casual players, but a 9/10 for the types of players it was designed for. Things that keep away a wider audience will be overall complexities in things like controls and a complete lack of graphics without proper modification. It is, however, completely free to download and play. I urge you to try it for yourself – you have nothing to lose.
This game is compatible with (intel) Mac, Linux, or Windows systems.
Yes, I said it. The FPS is dying, and/or is dead. It’s been a long time since the days of Doom and Wolfenstein, but all things considered, there’s nothing original to sell the genre anymore. Do you remember Goldeneye came out? Halo? And then each successive sequel? One after the other, I would watch ads pop up and previews appear on websites like this one, and each time I would get less and less excited. What about when Call of Duty: Black Ops was released? Were you readers as excited then as when Modern Warfare hit the shelves? I can feel it in these controller-callused fingers of mine—the thrill of using an automatic rifle to headshot opponents at a distance no longer speaks to me like it once did, and I have a feeling that a lot of people feel the same way. Below I have listed some observations for why I have made this bold claim. They’re subjective, of course, so feel free to argue, or converse, but if nothing else, take into consideration as to what I have to say: the first-person shooter has abused the success of its foundational components, and has become stagnant from lack of creativity.
Boring Plot Lines
I can’t recall the last time a new and compelling plot line was brought to the FPS genre. Halo was good, and original, but let’s face it: the plot wasn’t as intriguing the second, third, fourth, or fifth time around. Gamers will more often than not skip a single-player campaign to proceed straight to the multiplayer. The reason why is simple: they’ve seen it all before. Insurgents, terrorist factions, invaders, aliens, zombies—the tropes exist so that developers will use them and take advantage of them.
I can’t blame them for it; it’s extremely difficult making an original plot. Instead, the desire to be placed in the shoes of the solider responsible for saving the world at whatever point in time has been replaced with a desire to kill, troll, kill, and then rage quit. The developers know this just as well, and as a result we see games like Team Fortress, which removes the plot component entirely, or Gears of War, where a third person perspective is more useful in placing the player as a motivated observer looking to know what’s actually going on around him.
In a genre that’s so fast-paced and adrenaline-pumping, how are you supposed to keep a gamer interested when the next enemy is right around the corner? The problem is that plot is important. For so long videogame developers have been trying to create games that are realistic, and show them what it’s like to actually be in a fictional world, they have forgotten that it’s the art of storytelling that does that job the best. Now they are at odds with what they have created: gameplay that outpaces its ability to show you why the gameplay is significant. From my standpoint, I would rather be on the shores of Normandy to have the experience of being a soldier at that time, not to know just what it’s like to fire a bolt-action rifle.
I’ve seen so many Spartan suits I forgot what the original Roman ones look like.
2. Overused Frameworks
This one is short and sweet. I’m tired of seeing the same multiplayer gametypes. The concepts are reliable and easily accessible, but if you’re going to put in the effort to create a soul-shattering tour-de-force of interstellar war, why not do it in an interesting manner? Like I said in the last paragraph, I know it’s easy to rely on trends and stereotypes, but that doesn’t make it a better experience. Speaking as a pragmatist, you can’t continually build ground on worn and weathered infrastructure, or what you build will crumble and fall.
Have you seen the screens for Battlefield 3? Man, those look pretty darn sweet. Just watching the video clips, I could feel the exhilaration of what it’s like to have a sniper bullet ricochet off of concrete and sheet metal while crawling over roof tops. This, however, is nothing to be terribly excited over. The fact is superior graphics are what developers use as a crutch to try to instill value into those that play their titles. From a technological standpoint, this makes sense. Superior graphics and newer technologies equipped to handle them give FPS games the “edge” in the cutting edge of gaming. A crutch, however, is still a crutch, and if it’s used to replace one of the key elements of the game: plot, gameplay, sound, and so on, an intelligent gamer will be less inclined to continue with the effort of seeing what that title offers them. If Battlefield 3 turns out to be stunning visually but has a terrible score to go along with it, any sense of pace or tension would be lost with it.
4. Perpetually Imbalanced Gameplay
This is why rage quitting exists! Noob tube me, whatever, I can be playing this game and log over 500 hours and still get ganked by some punk five-year-old. On one hand, this creates an easy and accessible gameplay that most will enjoy. However, most developers won’t take skill ramping into consideration when they cram their title full of features. The Call of Duty series is notorious for this. We’re all gamers, so we know what it’s like to invest large amounts of time and energy into a title to receive a roughly comparable reward. By submitting an unpolished and imbalanced product, veteran gamers will give up on your title after too many incidences of frustration. This will effectively seal off the upper echelons of your user market, and leave the newer players to mess around. Perhaps it’s not a loss of profit, but it discourages gamers from continuing to play the game, and maybe even discourages from them buying future titles.
5. Too Much Hybridization
Look Familiar? Of course it does.
Everyone has observed how FPS titles are picking up more RPG-esque elements these days. This is understandable, as it adds more depth to the user interface and more desire to become skilled and informed as to character decisions. This is just a hypothesis, but I’m expecting FPS to become completely consumed by the role-playing genre. Soon every character will have highly-advanced biotech suits and contact lens HUDs that interface with the ammo count of your weapon. I’m not personally bothered with this, but this goes back to an earlier argument, which is that regurgitating ideas and tacking on a different name does not create progress. I’m also not trying to be a purist, but I would really enjoy seeing a title that uses a minimalist philosophy with their gameplay design that’s based in a not-so futuristic setting. The last game I saw that was even close to this was The Call of Cthulhu, by Bethesda, which was vastly under-appreciated in my opinion.
Detour is scheduled to release in Q2 of 2011, but before it does, we wanted to get in touch with the creators, Sandswept Studios. Today, I’m speaking with Geoff Keene (the CEO and Design Director), and he will give us a bit of insight on both the game and company alike.
Can you give us a brief history of Sandswept Studios?
Oh, it’s a riveting tale of adventure. Actually, it’s fairly short. We started Sandswept in December of 2007, during a particularly bad winter storm. At that time we were working on a 2D sidescroller. It didn’t really work out as we planned, and as it was our first project, we ran into quite a few issues we didn’t expect. In December of 2008, we canceled that project and began development on DETOUR. We started rather small, and have grown and shrunk repeatadly over the past couple of years, and we’re now sitting fairly steady at about 13 or so, right as we’re getting ready to release DETOUR.
Detour looks to be a pretty amazing multiplayer title. Will connectivity be exclusively hosted through Sandswept’s servers, or will it all users be able to direct-connect, host servers, or connect via LAN?
As long as players are connected to Steam, they will be able to create their own private and public games for people to join. We’re still working out how and if we’re doing any sort of automated matchmaking, as opposed to just having a global server list and joining directly to friends.
Will there be leaderboards or tournaments built into the game?
We do plan to have leaderboards and a few other ranked-style games, even if they’re not present in the initial release.
The video speaks volumes about the gameplay of Detour. How would you describe the game in paragraph form?
Oh boy. We’ve had to do this quite a bit, and it doesn’t always work. The gameplay of DETOUR is quite different from just about any other game out there, which is both a blessing and a curse. I’ll give it my best shot.
DETOUR is essentially a construction-based war game. The goal is to get your trucks across the map, while stopping the other players from doing the same. There’s a lot of cool stuff, such as bombs, bribery, turrets, donut shops (seriously!) and bubbles you can throw onto your truck. There’s a huge level of depth to the game we didn’t even touch on in that short 3 or so minutes of gameplay, and we hope we can show it off (and simply let people play it) in the very near future. All the beta feedback we’ve been receiving has been surprisingly positive regarding how smooth it plays and so forth. We’ve seen a few comments from those watching the video, perhaps a bit worried that the game will be too fast-paced, or something of the sort. We’ve been taking a lot of feedback and are making some adjustments to drastically increase the length of games, allowing for quite a bit more depth to the way you build, defend, and destroy.
Are there already plans in the works for DLC additions to the finished product after release?
We don’t currently have any specific plans for DLC, but it’s always a possibility. We will very likely roll out at least one additional update post-release, in order to address feedback and a few other things we simply haven’t had the time or resources for.
What gaming influences have helped to shape Detour into the game it has become?
This is a very good question. We’re not even sure ourselves. The idea spawned from an old board game (we believe it was called “Bridges”, or “Bridge-It”), but has grown into something far different. We’ve definitely looked at various RTS games and how they use their rock-paper-scissors mechanics, and we’ve heard it likened to old games, such as Blast Corps, but we certainly couldn’t point to any specific inspiration other than “The idea sounded like a fun game to make.”
Everything seems slated to release this quarter – are you aiming for a specific date yet?
That’s simply coincidence for us. Quarter 2 is basically when we’ve decided we can really get a finished, working product out the door. We’ve been working on DETOUR for a bit longer than we expected, but we love it all the same. We’ve got an internal deadline to have a huge amount of the game code ‘done’ by August 26th, but it’ll probably release a bit after. Sometime in May is the most accurate estimate I can give at this point.
On a personal level, what games are you playing right now?
Personally, I’ve been getting back into Team Fortress 2 and Call of Duty 4, just because they’re so easy to pick up and play (and then drop when something comes up that I have to attend to.) I’ve also grown some affection for League of Legends. I’ve noticed some similarities in pace between LoL and DETOUR, that’s for sure.
After creating a title, do you still have a good time playing it?
I’ll let you know once it’s out there! The recent playtests have been quite fun for all of us. I think a good portion of the joy for us specifically comes from seeing things really come together and working properly, but the gameplay, from as objective of a viewpoint as I can get it, has definitely held up throughout development.
We’ve heard great things about working with Valve and Steamworks – how would you rate your experience with them?
Valve rocks my socks. I would recommend Steam to any one developing for the PC. The biggest issues we had were trying to get XNA (C#) working with the Steam (C++) code. The rest of the process, and the guys we’ve been in contact with have been ridiculously helpful. I couldn’t ask for a better platform at this point.
Will the game be completely Steam exclusive?
We had plans for an Xbox LIVE Indie Games release, but in order to focus more on ensuring the PC game is not a silly port, we’ve post-poned (read: canceled) it until further notice. The game will be Steam exclusive until we decide otherwise. This is not only because we simply are enjoying Steam far too much and would like to devote more to the PC version, we’re just not very confident in the XBLIG marketplace and sales. We really don’t think it’s worth our time at this point.
Once Detour is released, where will the focus of the designers be redirected? Are there other titles in the works already?
We might have hinted at something in some particular video we released recently. We are working on something huge, in every sense of the word. Gamers have been waiting for it for far too long. Tell every one you know; Sandswept delivers.
Are there any shout-outs or special mentions that you would like to make? Any sites you would like to bring attention to?
I’d mainly like to thank sites like yours for giving us a platform to speak and get the word out! That said, we’d certainly love to see some new faces over on our forums at Sandswept.net! Pardon Our Dust!
Thank you, Geoff for working with us and bringing information and entertainment to the masses. Readers can look forward to a review of this amazing looking title as soon as we are able. Stay tuned! (in the meantime, check out the video below)
Yesterday’s post caused an uproar. Xbox and PS3 fans came out of the woodwork to defend their consoles, and the number one thing I saw, over and again, was the claim that console exclusive titles were the number one reason to own a console. Let it be said, I’m not a console hater. I give credit where it’s due, and acknowledge that the mentioned titles were fantastic. I did, however, want to bring up this list of games that are not playable on consoles, and show that the PC has some major exclusives that maybe weren’t taken into consideration.
#5 – The Civilization Series
Sid Meyer’s Civilization series has been a major staple of turn-based strategy since the days of DOS. Though there have been released spin-offs, such as Civilization Revolution, the official titles are PC exclusive, and not coming to console anytime soon.
#4 – Starcraft II
According to the official site, “StarCraft II is being developed for Windows and Mac. We have no current plans to bring the game to any console platform.” There is no doubting the popularity of the title, especially considering the original.
#3 – Crysis (the original)
Of course, more recently consoles have become powerful enough to handle the graphics and physics that made Crysis great. Unfortunately, the original game was not released for any type of console.
#2 – Minecraft
This game isn’t even released. Still in beta, the creator of the game has amassed over 33 million USD. With over 6 million users, it is quickly becoming one of the most popular PC games of all time.
#1 – World of Warcraft
You should have known that this game would top the list. Perhaps the most well-known PC exclusive title of our lifetimes, WoW is over 12 million subscribers strong.
Other honorable mentions include games such as Dwarf Fortress, where there is no telling how many downloads or users there have been. Open-source games are constantly added onto and improved, but distributed through many, many sources.
At Gaming Irresponsibly, we are huge fans of the indie gaming community. We have played a collection of different games, both great and horrible. On occasion a game will come out that regardless of good or bad, you know you will be spending some time with. Meet FortressCraft.
The first thing you notice when you start FortressCraft is the uncanny resemblance to Minecraft. Yes, I said it, you have to address the elephant in the room on this one. After playing it for a bit though, appearance really only runs skin deep. The game is a sandbox style building game that allows you to adventure around on Xbox Live with up to 4 friends, creating your own world as you see fit.
FC does boast some attractive graphics. Lighting effects dance across the landscape and dirt falls from the ceiling as you adventure in the caverns you create. Water also reflects on it’s surface, creating some really unique visuals when you come across it. Relics are hidden throughout the world, allowing for different little cheat-like abilities like night vision or a head light or even a ray gun. There is also a TNT detonator which allows you to detonate the TNT blocks (obviously) – that item is a must-find. This feature is relatively unique to a game like this, it really does promote exploration. There is also a trampoline block that is actually really fun to play with. If you add things like this with the relics and the 4 player multiplayer features, you really can get your $3 out of the game.
The game ironically promotes the fact that it is unfinished, however there are things that seem like they should have been implemented before release. I found quite a few bugs in gameplay. The most notable bug that I could continually replicate was making the game not locate my character by placing blocks accidentally on yourself. The screen will fill with static and you can see through everything, then suddenly you will be on the surface again. Another annoyance was the fact that even though you carry a pickaxe, you never really use it. Blocks turn into wireframe models and then disappear into a splash of dirt, or appear in the same fashion. You are also given the entire array of blocks to start. There is no collection of resources, all you do is create. Worse yet, when you join a multiplayer game, your single player map will be erased. I really do hope that this is a bug…
There are some great things about this game and those things are done beautifully. The hollowness or the rest of the game really holds it back. The game promotes that it is the first chapter, and that creation is the theme for this chapter. Unfortunately, the game also packages a glimpse of what is to come.
FotressCraft receives a 4.5/10. What holds this back is the amount of bugs and glitches that I have encountered already.
An amazing Steam compilation of indie games debuted on April 1st. Below, you can see the titles that are included in the press release. If you love indie games, you really won’t find a better deal, and you can gift away any doubles that end up in your library!
Steam press release:
Now you can enjoy 13 great Indie titles for one low price on Steam! The Potato Sack Pack is available for 75% off.
The Potato Sack Pack includes the impressive list of Indie titles below. Already own any of the games in this pack? Give your extra copy to a friend. Plus, if you own all 13 of the games in this pack (or purchase this pack), get a special Team Fortress 2 potato hat. (Hat available after April 5th)
- 1… 2… 3… KICK IT!
- AaAaAA!!! – A Reckless Disregard for Gravity
- Amnesia: The Dark Descent
- BIT.TRIP BEAT
- Defense Grid: The Awakening
- Killing Floor
- Super Meat Boy
- The Ball
- The Wonderful End of the World
- Toki Tori
-Error reading from ESRB datastream- Please visit ESRB.org for rating information.
Life is a random gamble. Should I do this? Should I take that risk? For some reason, the aspect of randomness in video games has always attracted me in a strange way. If you liked the concepts found in Diablo for unidentified items, or in Two Worlds where items are not set in stone and are in constant flux, then you will love this game.
Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup has a rich history. It is a variant of a very old game called Rogue which came out in the 80′s. The goal seems simple: get to the bottom of the dungeon, and grab an orb. Once you finish that, you simply return to the surface an win. In application, nothing is as simple as it seems. The dungeon itself is completely random. By that, I truly mean you never know what to expect. If this is your first time playing, you might make it hundreds or thousands of turns, but there is also a good chance that your first playthrough will last mere moments.
When I say that character and class selection is extremely complex, there is no way to stress this fact enough. You have a myriad of races and class combinations to choose from, and each one will make your game even more unique. Even the very best of players, with a practiced and tried combination of selections, have a good chance of being obliterated early on. Perhaps this is what I like most about this game – I know it’s not likely I’ll ever actually beat it, but I have tried hundreds of times.
If you have never played a game like this, I’m not surprised. Many people, despite it’s popularity, haven’t even seen this type of challenge before. Though this game is constantly being added to and being made more complex, it’s worth your time if you call yourself a true gamer. The challenge alone is worth the pursuit, and as you play you learn the facts that help the next playthrough. Below, I’m going to add the links you will need. My best suggestion if you are just beginning is to attempt a playthrough with something like a Troll Berzerker – it makes things a lot simpler than a ranged class or a caster.
Does this game have any system requirements? No, not if you play the console-type version. If the graphical tiles version does, it likely won’t even require a video card. This game is simple, and maybe that’s why I’ve had it installed on every system I’ve ever owned. It’s a terrific way to burn up a few minutes or even hours. Each time you beat your last score, you will celebrate with beer and women. (Unless you’re a wine person, in which case you may just offer yourself a toast or something.)
Still waiting to see the epic graphics? Well, here you go.
This excursion did not end well. I chose a Human Enchanter for the screenshot, and here’s how far I got.
Still, every experience is 100% unique, which is something more modern games just cannot provide. Major titles that focus on replayability still have not captured the essence of this adventure.
Most of us have played Diablo, so I will make it more clear using unidentified items as an example. First, only the items you start with are “identified”. Everything you pick up, weapon or armor-wise, is only given a vague description like “sword”. Once you equip it, you will learn immediately if the item is cursed, which is a risk you take each time. (cursed items are stuck to you until you can remove the curse – usually through a scroll.)
Even scrolls and potions, as powerful as they may be, are found unidentified. Part of the fun is the gamble. I’m about to die – do I drink this? Should I equip this mystery armor? You might drink the potion and become completely healed, or it might paralyze you and get you killed. The scroll might detect all of your items or identify things, or it may teleport you randomly – possibly into an even worse situation. Te game has no sense of remorse, and I relish in that fact.
This game is extremely hard, and the learning curve is up there with games like Dwarf Fortress. However, once you become familiar with the controls you will find yourself able to delve deeper and deeper into trouble. Again, I’ve kept it as a gaming staple for many years, on every operating system I’ve ever used.
For what it is, I give the game a 9/10. It would be hard for me to come up with ay improvements to add, except that the help system isn’t as intuitive as it could be for some basic controls. Still, part of the fun is the failure aspect of everything. Play this game and fail. Then, do it a hundred times more. Each time, it will grow on you even more.