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Carl Phillips

Destiny PS4 Gameplay | Combined Arms

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, Gameplay

In today's Destiny video, Carl and Matt investigate the new playlist of Combined Arms, touted as bringing vehicle-fuelled carnage to Bungie's title. However, as our duo found out over the course of the two games they played, that really wasn't the case. Watch the video above to see why they were so disappointed with Bungie's latest addition to the Crucible.

Game Night | Destiny - Dealspwn Vs Phogoth

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, Game Night, Gameplay

In today's episode of Game Night, the team jump into Destiny and attempt to do The Summoning Pit on Hard. Watch as Carl, Brendan, and Matt try to survive the many moon Wizards before taking on the final boss Phogoth. Highlights include the creation of another sport, Carl demanding Matt calls him a hero, and Brendan dying in the most inconvenient places.

Destiny Review | Hope for the future

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, PS3 games, PS4 games, Xbox 360 games, Xbox One Games

Destiny Review | Hope for the future
Platform: PS4 (Tested) | Xbox One | PS3 | Xbox 360

Developer: Bungie

Publisher: Activision

This review was always going to a tough one to write. On one hand, this is my first new-gen title, and the choice to make the jump for Destiny puts a lot of expectation on it. On the other hand, the difficultly of separating naturally-grown excitement from the flow of mainstream hype has complicated matters, to the point that our Editor Matt laughed as he handed me the job. Add on top of this the fray that has been other reviews coming out within days of release (and the fact I hate review scores – there, I said it) as well as a huge focus on the budget for the new franchise, and it’s been a little daunting in all honesty. Still, a week of play in Bungie’s long-awaited new IP has allowed me to see most of what the game has to offer, so to hell with the numeric opinions of others, and to hell with the budget (I couldn’t care less if it cost $500 million or a fiver to make) – it’s time for me to help you decide if it’s worth your time and money.

Let’s go over the basics for any newcomers in our ranks. At its core, Destiny is a persistent online shooter that sees players choose between three class types and races, each with their own distinct abilities and cosmetic choices. From there, players are charged with levelling up and finding the shiniest of loot by either jumping into PvE encounters or PvP fights, with more content unlocking as the player’s level increases. It’s part MMO and part co-op encounters, all tied together with FPS combat that we know and love, but it’s also not quite like anything else that’s come before it. Despite the similar mechanics, it’s not Halo, and it’s not World of Warcraft either. The nearest thing to it (and I can’t believe I’m bringing it up again) is Defiance – the game that never realised its potential. In fact, there are a quite a few issues that Destiny shares with Trion’s online shooter, but there is one difference that separates the two – Destiny is fun to play for all the right reasons, and that in my mind overshadows the problems that are there.

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Destiny PS4 Gameplay | Taking on The Summoning Pits

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, FPS games, Gameplay, PS4 games, Xbox One

Having completed the story missions on the Moon, Carl & Matt decide to delve onto Destiny's second strike mission - The Summoning Pit - in our latest video dedicated to Bungie's latest. See how the duo (plus a random) get on against the hordes of the Hive, before taking on the end-of-level boss, Phogoth.

Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our critical impressions vidcasts!

Destiny PS4 Gameplay | Salvaging the Crucible

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, Gameplay, PS4 games, Xbox One Games

We've already had a look at many of the modes the Crucible has to offer, but yesterday Bungie unlocked the Salvage game type in Destiny. As such, we sent in Carl & Matt to investigate the 3v3 action in our latest gameplay video from the launch week.

Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our daily critical impressions vidcasts!

Destiny PS4 Gameplay | Clashing & Rumbling in the Crucible

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, FPS games, Gameplay, PS4 games, Xbox One Games

We continue our in-game coverage of Destiny by following on from the recent Game Night, testing out more of the Crucible. Carl & Matt try their luck in two rounds of Clash, before going head-to-head in a Rumble match.

Stay tuned to the site for more of our on-going Destiny vidcasts, with the next episode focusing on the multiplayer modes of the Crucible.

Game Night | Destiny - Controlling the Crucible

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, Game Night

This week's Game Night sees Carl and Matt dive into the Crucible multiplayer of Destiny, testing their skills again other Guardians in the Control game type.

Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our on-going impressions on the game in the run up to our final review.

Destiny PS4 Gameplay | Mooning with Dinklage

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Activision, Bungie, Destiny, First person shooter, Gameplay, PS3 games, PS4 games, Xbox 360 games, Xbox One Games

It's finally here - Destiny has arrived and it's in the hands of gamers everywhere. The Dealspwn team have been getting stuck into the action as well, and so we kick off our video coverage of Destiny's launch with Carl & Matt taking on the first mission on the Moon. Highlights include Carl's delight in discovering the Pike for the first time, and Matt demonstrates why he loves the Warlock's power glove.

If you haven't already, be sure to check out our Critical Impression video in which Carl and Matt discuss their initial thoughts on Bungie's latest.

PREVIEW | Teaming up with the Batmobile in Batman: Arkham Knight

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Batman: Arkham Knight, Games previews, Gamescom 2014, Rocksteady Studios, Warner Bros. Interactive

PREVIEW | Teaming up with the Batmobile in Batman: Arkham Knight

There are a number of reasons to get a current/new-gen console right now. Destiny is almost here, The Master Chief Collection is just over the horizon, and there is a now a decent backlog of launch titles to pick through. The thing is, as good as all as those games may be I haven’t had the feeling of “OH DEAR GOD I NEED IT RIGHT NOW” like I have done in previous generations. At this year’s Gamescom that all changed, and it’s all down to the hands-on session I had with Arkham Knight.

Actually, I’ll be most specific – it was the Batmobile.

I was given the opportunity to sit down with a small section that take place near the start, as Batman is sent into the ACE Chemicals Plant to rescue some hostages and see who’s up to no good. Unfortunately this meant I didn’t get a sense of how big the city of Gotham is this time around – one of my biggest queries about the game – but I did get to see how the Batmobile can be an asset to the Caped Crusader when face to face with the bad guys. The short of it is that’s incredibly satisfying, but I’m guessing you more want details so let me tell you story all about how Batman & the Batmobile kicked some ass.

PREVIEW | Teaming up with the Batmobile in Batman: Arkham Knight

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INTERVIEW | Epic Games on the new UK studio, UT’s development, & Unreal Engine 4’s strengths

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Development, Epic Games, Gamescom 2014, Interviews, James Golding, Jim Brown, Unreal Engine 4, Unreal Tournament, Zack Parrish

INTERVIEW | Epic Games on the new UK studio, UT’s development, & Unreal Engine 4’s strengths

When we head over to Gamescom each year it’s usually the done thing to go and check out all the games. After all, there’s more than a few of them there, and here at Dealspwn we do like our games. However, we were presented with an opportunity to chat with some of the people behind the Unreal Engine 4 – the latest version of Epic Games’ proprietary engine – to discuss how it has been doing in the hands of developers, and in turn learn more about the community-driven Unreal Tournament project. In a day full of presentations to other developers, I was lucky to sit down with Technical Artist Zak Parrish, Lead Programmer James Golding, and Senior Designer of the UT project Jim Brown, to find out more about one of the industry’s leading development tools.

To start off, I had to ask about Epic’s newly opened UK office. Comprising mostly of the team at Pitbull Studio, last month’s announcement was a huge boost to the industry here in the UK. I asked the team what it was like officially bringing them into the Epic family and setting up shop on our shores. “I moved back over here in January to help set up the UK office, and that’s been super exciting to be back in the UK and seeing Epic make a commitment to the UK and embrace all the talent and stuff that’s going on here,” said Golding. “We already have a lot of developers using the engine in the UK and interested, so that makes sense, and we’ve had this relationship with Pitbull for a couple of years now, working super close with those guys and we’ve been treating them like peers, like part of Epic, for a long time, so it feels very natural.”

INTERVIEW | Epic Games on the new UK studio, UT’s development, & Unreal Engine 4’s strengths

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PREVIEW | How the Nemesis System of Middle-Earth: Shadows Of Mordor is an anecdote generator

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Gamescom 2014, Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Monolith Productions, Warner Bros. Interactive

PREVIEW | How the Nemesis System of Middle-Earth: Shadows Of Mordor is an anecdote generator
Confession time – when it was announced I didn’t give much hope to Shadow of Mordor, despite the cool premise that was being presented to me. “An Assassin’s Creed style game set in an open world Middle Earth? There have been worse ideas,” I thought to myself, but it was the reveal of the Nemesis system that piqued my interest. “If it’s exactly as they’re saying it will be, that could be very interesting” was my response. A game where your villains change every time you play or make a decision? I chalked it down to the overhyping of a system that created the illusion of choice and an elaborate AI army, and went about my business.

But then I went to Gamescom and saw the Nemesis system in action. It’s real folks. It actually works, and it’s going to be the stuff of YouTube gold.

Before we get into it though, here’s a quick round-up of everything else that was shown and told to us during the presentation. The game will take place directly after the third Hobbit film The Battle of Five Armies, filling the gap between the recent films and The Lord Of The Rings trilogy. As Sauron’s forces begin their invasion, they wipe out the Rangers of the North protecting Gondor, including Talion – the main character for the game. (Un)luckily for him, a wraith brings him back to life who turns out to be the spirit of Celebrimbor – the Elf king who forged the rings of power that led to this entire mess in the first place. As such, the player will assume control of both Talion and Celebrimbor in a quest for revenge against the Dark Lord’s forces.

PREVIEW | How the Nemesis System of Middle-Earth: Shadows Of Mordor is an anecdote generator

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INTERVIEW | Tornquist & Scheve on why Dreamfall Chapters will "evolve narrative experiences in games"

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Dag Scheve, Dreamfall Chapters, Gamescom 2014, Interviews, Ragnar Tornquist, Red Thread Games

I had just spent the last twenty or so minutes watching Dreamfall Chapters Book One: Reborn in action, seeing locations like Europolis brought to life and how the player would interact with the world. As a fan of the series, I was excited. In fact, seeing that the game was so close to a finished state only made me want it sooner. If you haven’t already (and don’t mind a few light spoilers – nothing big, I promise you!) then be sure to check out the gameplay presentation on our YouTube channel. Or watch the embed above. Because convenience.

Once it was over, Creative Director Ragnar Tørnquist & Lead Writer Dag Scheve took some time to discuss a number of topics, such as development, the PS4 announcement, and both the good & bad sides of fandom. Before we get going though, a quick confession – I had originally planned for this to be a video interview, but technological failings on my part meant that we would have to do things the hard way. What this means is that I’ve robbed you of yet another glorious moment of Tørnquist & Scheve posing with Toby the Dealspwny. For that, I am deeply sorry.

The joys of JourneyCon, & disappointments of ‘controversy’

2013 was a big year for Red Thread Games. The Kickstarter was a success and development even hit its Alpha milestone on time before the year’s end, but to me the most notable part of the year was JourneyCon. With fans from 17 different countries attending the inaugural event, it was quite the achievement for the Norwegian developers. “It happened!” exclaimed Dag, when I asked how successful they had felt it had been.We sold out, yeah,” Ragnar began. “That was our prime goal, I think! That and that it was a good event, and it was fun. It was amazing [to learn] where people came from. There was one guy from Oregon [in the US], there was people traveling from all over Europe, there was one guy from New York! People just came in from across the world, and that was great.” Despite this, Ragnar admitted that it was a draining experience “not because of the fans, but because the amount of work it was.”  With Book One emerging in the very near future, it’s no wonder he confirmed there wouldn’t be one this year, was hopeful that they would do it again in the future.

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Dreamfall Chapters: Sony more "proactive” than Microsoft, "it made sense to go with PlayStation"

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
News
Tags:
Dreamfall Chapters, Game news, Playstation 4, Ragnar Tornquist, Red Thread Games, Xbox One

Dreamfall Chapters: Sony more "proactive” than Microsoft, "it made sense to go with PlayStation"

“We’d be happy to take it to Xbox later on”

It may have only been on the big screen for mere seconds, but the news that Dreamfall Chapters would be coming to consoles first on Playstation 4 was a welcome surprise at this year’s Gamescom. So, it was obviously something I wanted to talk about with Ragnar Tørnquist & Dag Scheve of Red Thread Games when I met up with them the following day, to learn more about how the deal was made, and if it meant that Xbox One owners would missing out.

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VIDEO PREVIEW | The exploration & decision making of Dreamfall Chapters

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Dag Scheve, Dreamfall Chapters, Gamescom 2014, Ragnar Tornquist, Red Thread Games, Video Previews

With the recent news that Dreamfall Chapter would be going episodic, and being told that the first part would be with us sooner than the original November date, many fans were eager to see how the project was coming along. There have been a few walkthroughs this year at events, but at Gamescom I was invited to check out a few select scenes from Book One: Reborn. Creative Director Ragnar Tørnquist & Lead Writer Dag Scheve guided me through the developer walkthrough, highlighting the puzzles, exploration, & decision making players will have in the game.

Obviously, there are some light spoilers involved in watching this (although nothing story ruining - I was asked to stop filming at those points!) but if you're curious as to how the game will play, or just want to see Europolis in all its glory, then this video is a must see. Stay tuned to the site later today for our exclusive interview with Ragnar & Dag!

VIDEO INTERVIEW | What's next for WildStar?

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Carbine Studios, Gamescom 2014, Interviews, MMOs, NCsoft, Videos, WildStar

It's been almost three months since WildStar launched, and the team at Carbine Studios have already dropped two sizable content patches into the game. They're not done yet though, and so to learn a bit more about what is in store for the MMORPG I sat down with Lead System Designer Nick Roth at this year's Gamescom. We get the lowdown on the new zone of the Defile, the first in-game holiday event Shades Eve, and the all-new 5-man dungeon The Ultimate ProtoGames.

INTERVIEW | Why World of Speed's teamwork is a racing gamechanger

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Gamescom 2014, Slightly Mad Studios, Video Interview, World of Speed

As explained in our hands-on preview earlier today, World of Speed looks to mix things up in the racing genre by putting an emphasis on teamwork during a race. To find out more, Carl spoke to Andy Tudor of Slightly Mad Studios to learn more about how it will achieve this in the online gaming space.

If you haven't already, be sure to check out our hands-on preview article for World of Speed.

PREVIEW | Racing gets all MMO’d with World of Speed

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Games previews, Gamescom 2014, PC games, Slightly Mad Studios, World of Speed

PREVIEW | Racing gets all MMO’d with World of Speed

Slightly Mad Studios are a little busy these days. Made up of developers responsible for bringing some of the better racing tiles of recent memory, the team is currently working of Project CARS for current-gen consoles, but that is not all they’re cooking up. They also happen to be working on World of Speed – an online team-based racing title for PC that will be completely free, and I got hands-on with it at this year’s Gamescom.

Unlike most racing games where being the first across the finish line is the main aim, WoS introduces objectives into each race to mix things up. These range from hitting several long drifts, to achieving perfect corners, to slip-streaming another car for a specific period of time, all over the course of the race. The thing is, the developers were quick to point out that no one racer could effectively complete all the objectives in a single competitive race, and so this is where the team aspect comes into play.

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INTERVIEW | How "Mingle-Player" is at the heart of Dead Island 2

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Dead Island 2, Deep Silver, Gamescom 2014, Video interviews, Yager Development

After getting hands-on with the Alpha build and seeing how the gameplay had changed, Carl sat down with game director Bernd Diemer and producer Jan Eric Lauble to chat about Dead Island 2. Topics include how the seemless multiplayer will work, why the team went with a less serious approach compared to its predecessor, and what sort of weapon combinations we can expect to find in the open world zombie slaying title.

Then Toby the Dealspwny appears and hijacks the interview. Just because he could.

Be sure to check out our hands-on impressions for Dead Island 2 from this year's Gamescom.

PREVIEW | How Dead Island 2 is bringing fun back to the zombie apocalypse

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Dead Island 2, Deep Silver, Games previews, Gamescom 2014, Yager Development

PREVIEW | How Dead Island 2 is bringing fun back to the zombie apocalypse
I really wanted to like the first Dead Island. I really did. It hit all the right boxes in terms on concept – 4-player co-op with a huge world to explore, customisable weapons to find and upgrade, varied enemies to kill – but it was all undone by a hugely inconsistent tone and some of the worst voice acting in recent years. As such I didn’t get very far into the game despite multiple tries to play through it, and I made sure to give Riptide a wide birth as well.

So it came as a welcome surprise when the Dead Island 2 announcement trailer caught my attention with a new, less serious tone that looked to inject some fun into the series. “This is exactly what happened last time, Carl, and the game didn’t live up to the hype,” I told myself, but after getting hands on with the game at this year’s Gamescom I’m far more optimistic that the handover of development from Techland to Yager Development (makers of the criminally underrated Spec Ops: The Line… if we ignore that multiplayer) will make it a win-win situation for both Deep Silver and consumers.

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Game Night | Firefall Part 2 - Eggs, iron, & other treasures

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
Firefall, Game Night, Red 5 Studios

Having gotten back into the swing of things, Carl & Jon see what else players can do in Firefall for the second part of this week's Game Night. Highlights include more bug stomping, Carl getting some much needed narrative closure, and Jon proudly showing off his new virtual pet.

Stay tuned to Dealspwn.com for Jon's official verdict on Firefall.