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Jonathan Lester

Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy Curtain Call is coming West

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
3DS, 3DS Games, Final Fantasy, Music games, Rhythm games, Square Enix

Enjoy legendary tunes in stylus

Final Fantasy's soundtrack is a thing of rare beauty, capable of packing out the Royal Albert Hall and venues worldwide thanks to Nobuo Uematsu's legendary anthems. It's a joy to listen to, but even more fun to tap along with, thanks to the excellent rhythm game/JRPG hybrid Theatrhythm that graced 3DS handhelds back in 2012.

Squeenix has now confirmed that its sequel, Curtain Call, is coming to North America and Europe later this year; containing 200 tracks, 60 characters from throughout the franchise and plenty of new modes. Definitely one to watch out for - and we'll keep you posted.

Oh, and it's pronounced 'theatre-rhythm.' Just so you know.

Top Ten Tuesdays | What We Want From Halo 5!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
343 Industries, Halo 4, Halo 5

Top Ten Tuesdays | What We Want From Halo 5!

Halo 5 is coming. We'll probably have to wait until 2015 if the rumour mill is anything to go by, but as longtime fans of the series, we can't wait to see how 343 Industries push Bungie's legendary brand into the new console generation.

Actually, we do have a few ideas of our own - and some criticisms of Halo 4 to boot.

10: Sort your QTEs out, 343

Top Ten Tuesdays | What We Want From Halo 5!

Halo 4 deserves to be studied in game design courses over the next few years, since it featured both the best and worst QTEs in recent memory.

The first level challenged us to climb up a collapsing superstructure in the most immersive QTE ever implemented by a videogame. Master Chief glanced left or right instead of relying on silly button prompts, allowing us to unconsciously make the right move without breaking the first-person perspective, to the extent that I had to replay the scene and intentionally fail just to convince myself that it wasn't a cutscene. It was utterly masterful (no pun intended) and we'd be happy with more of that - even in other games. Plagiarise the heck out of it, everyone.

However, we want none of the other kind of QTEs in Halo 5. The bad kind. The lazy kind. The immersion-killing kind. The 'press RB to kill the Elite' or 'hammer X to win the game' kind. No. Bad 343. Bad. Don't make me roll up a newspaper and bonk you on the nose.

9: Grifball: The eSport Of The Future

Top Ten Tuesdays | What We Want From Halo 5!

eSports are all the rage these days, and Halo 5 is already perfectly placed to turn the best of its gametypes into a sensation. Grifball. Rooster Teeth's joke became a deadly serious mode, one that's as tense and tactical as it is ludicrously fun and riotously ridiculous.

So not only do we crave Grifball at launch, but we'd love loads of rotating championships and tournaments built directly into the game, supported by robust stat tracking, then perfectly accompanied by Xbox One Twitch streaming and DVR. See you in pre-season!

Oh, and we're looking for a fourth team-mate. We're undefeated in 2014. Sort of.

Click here to read more...

EA should make huge robots play football, suggests UK charts

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
UK Games Charts, UK retail

EA should make huge robots play football, suggests UK charts

I hope you're well-rested after a relaxing long weekend of a thousand annoying chores (fingers crossed that you managed to sneak in a beer somewhere between Ronsealing the fence and driving up the M1 to see the folks), so let's ease back into the swing of things with the latest UK charts.

Trials Fusion was last week's best new entry, which released on next-gen consoles as a £15.99 download or £30 retail box including the season pass. It's a fantastic game, though it debuted at seventh, since its physical copy was thoroughly outgunned by the likes of Titanfall and FIFA World Cup. EA should seriously look into combining football and massive robots soon, surely? Even as a Titanfall mode, it'd practically print money.

I'm also delighted that Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare is sticking around. PopCap are constantly adding new free content to their surprisingly deep and addictive shooter, which deserves a thriving player base.

Click here to read more...

Steam weekly deals include Beatbuddy, Stellar Impact, AVSEQ & NPPD Rush for peanuts

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
PC, PC games

Steam weekly deals include Beatbuddy, Stellar Impact, AVSEQ & NPPD Rush for peanuts

Apparently 37% of all Steam games sold are never actually played; just languishing tragically in our libraries. If they could, they'd sing a heartbreaking song like Jessie in Toy Story 2.

So here's some more backlog fodder! You can't resist the deliciously cheap prices on offer here, because you're weak and Gabe Newell knows it. Check out the full list here and the highlights below, some of which come courtesy of jaystan @ HUKD!

Thief only £8.90 at CDKeys (PC, includes Bank Heist DLC)

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Eidos Montreal, PC, PC games

Thief only £8.90 at CDKeys (PC, includes Bank Heist DLC)

Thief | CDKeys | £8.90 (save £10)
Price ComparisonThief review

It's daylight robbery! It's a steal! It's... other larceny-related puns!

Thief isn't exactly a return to form (reviews range from half-decent to utterly atrocious - Matt likes it), so its price has been tumbling over the last month. Nine Quid seems to be about right, especially since it's a quid cheaper than our last deal and let me copy/paste the same body text. Except that bit. And that bit. And that bit. Oh lorks, I'm going to be here a while.

And that bit. Thanks to theg @ HUKD!

 

Get a 3DS and three games for £114 at Amazon

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
3DS, Nintendo

Get a 3DS and three games for £114 at Amazon

If you're in the market for a 3DS and would rather splash out on games rather than the more comfortable XL model, Amazon has a couple of cheeky little deals.

Prefer your handhelds to look like a Model T Ford? The black version comes with Castlevania: Mirror Of Fate, Tekken 3D and Resident Evil: The Mercenaries - which is a huge saving, but not the best selection of games you'll ever see. 'Half-decent' or 'mediocre' probably covers it.

Those who'd rather a brighter console can pick up the pink version, which includes Tetris, Freaky Forms Deluxe and Art Academy - somewhat better on the games front.

Check out the deals here. Thanks to Broxy @ HUKD!

Titanfall now only £26.39 at Zavvi on Xbox One

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
FPS, Respawn Entertainment, Xbox One, Xbox One Games

Titanfall now only £26.39 at Zavvi on Xbox One

TitanfallZavvi | £29.99 - which is discounted to £26.39
Price ComparisonReview

If you're looking to pick up Titanfall but don't want to spend much money, Zavvi are offering an interesting deal of two parts. Respawn's shooter currently costs a very inexpensive £29.99, but then gets an extra discount down to a tasty £26.39 by way of a "spend £20 and 12%" offer.

Whether an Easter treat or glitch, it might be worth taking advantage of. Thanks to Chanchi32 @ HUKD!

Frozen Synapse gets free Steam Weekend and big discount... on Greenman Gaming

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Mode 7 Games, PC games, Strategy games

Frozen Synapse gets free Steam Weekend and big discount... on Greenman Gaming

More social wetworrk than social network, Frozen Synapse is a hardcore yet accessible strategy game designed to be played on your terms. Whether battling the AI or facing off against several opponents in asynchronous (read: play by mail) matches, it really is a special little game. Indeed, we gave it a perfect score.

You don't have to take our word for it, though, because Frozen Synapse is now free to download and play on Steam for the duration of the weekend! It's also got a discount down to £3.74, which will net you two copies - though you can undercut that via Greenman Gaming and their O3H7FE-D4NFO0-F0LIGK voucher code. It's unclear whether you'll get two copies, but I assume you will.

Salvation Prophecy only £3.74 on Steam, save £11

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Firedance Games, Indie Games, PC games

Salvation Prophecy only £3.74 on Steam, save £11

Salvation Prophecy | Steam | £3.74 (RRP: £14.99)
Salvation Prophecy Review

Salvation Prophecy may be rough around the edges, but it's one of the most ambitious indie space games in years. Ground combat, space combat and RPG elements are wrapped in a high tactical layer that, while inconsistent, is an absolute blast if it grabs you. It's only £3.99 - so why not check out our review and decide whether it's your cup of tea. Thanks and credit to uakiki @ HUKD, who found this before I did!

Xbox One Titanfall Bundle £344.97 at Gamestop

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
hardware deals, Titanfall, Xbox One, Xbox One Games

Xbox One Titanfall Bundle £344.97 at Gamestop

Xbox One & Titanfall | Gamestop | £344.97
Xbox One ReviewTitanfall Review

Time to make the generation jump? Matt advises you to save your money, but Gamestop's £344.97 all-in price for the Xbox One and Titanfall will save you a fiver vs ASDA. We did briefly see it for £339 last week, though. Decisions, decisions. Thanks to Currey20 @ HUKD!

Throttle back, Warner Bros... or LEGO will go the way of Guitar Hero

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Guitar Hero, lego, Lego The Hobbit, Traveller's Tales, TT Games, Warner Bros. Interactive

Throttle back, Warner Bros... or LEGO will go the way of Guitar Hero

We love the LEGO games here at Dealspwn.com. From humble British beginnings, Traveller's Tales blended our favourite films with our favourite childhood toy, creating a gentle, accessible, hilarious and compelling set of adventures for everyone to enjoy. We've certainly had a lot of it to enjoy, too, from Star Wars to Indiana Jones.

And Harry Potter. And The Lord Of The Rings. And LEGO City Undercover and The Chase Begins and DC Super Heroes and DC Super Heroes 2 and Rock Band and The Adventure Continues and Pirates Of The Caribbean and Ninjago and The Legends Of Chima and Marvel Super Heroes and Universe in Peril and the LEGO Movie... culminating in a Hobbit tie-in that launched before the Trilogy has even completed, offers scant new features, feels unpolished and arrives less than two months after their last major release.

Throttle back, Warner Bros... or LEGO will go the way of Guitar Hero

Uh-oh. This is actually rather worrying... because we've seen it before. When a franchise oversaturates its own marketplace and directly competes with itself because a publisher wants too much of a good thing, the alarm bells are bound to go off  - as we learned thanks to a certain extinct music game featuring plastic guitars and a billion unnecessary semi-sequels all clamouring for attention.

If Warner Bros. doesn't throttle back, there's a real and present danger of our beloved LEGO series going the same way.

Click here to read more...

Trials Fusion Review | Face(plant) Piles Of Trials With Smiles

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Games reviews, PC, PC games, Platformer, PS4, PS4 games, RedLynx, Ubisoft, Xbox One, Xbox One Games

Trials Fusion Review | Face(plant) Piles Of Trials With Smiles

Platforms: PC | PS4 | Xbox One (reviewed)

Developer: RedLynx

Publisher: Ubisoft

Trials is as punishing and perfect as ever. It's a game of ludicrous excess and controlled restraint, as you scream over a ludicrous gravity-defying jump one moment and deftly feather the throttle to make it across a nasty gauntlet of overhangs the next. The interplay between speed, power, weight, balance, gravity and physics is one again spot-on, challenging us to excel through skill and perseverance, all while desperately attempting to shave miliseconds off our par time, beat our ghost and humiliate our friends.

Trials Fusion should be everything we want from a Trials sequel, then, but some new features and window dressing deserve a closer look.

Trials Fusion Review | Face(plant) Piles Of Trials With Smiles

We're in the future now, and Trials Fusion won't let you forget it. From the first second you boot it up, an annoyingly brain-worming theme song proudly proclaims "welcome to the future! Man! Machine! The futuuuuuuuuure!" while displaying a shiny armour-clad rider atop a slick skyscraper. It'd be a great excuse to introduce some futuristic new technology, but no, it basically boils down to a somewhat forgettable storyline involving two AIs (which features a few fun one-liners that you'll hear repeated ad nauseam each time you restart a checkpoint) and a vibrant colourful new aesthetic to punch up the tracks. We've come a long way since Trials HD's uninspiring collection of brown crates and grey pipes.

Click here to read more...

PS4 getting digital pre-loads & beefy DVR editor in next update

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
PS4, Sony

Microsoft have been busy ironing out the kinks in their new-gen machine over the last few months, but Sony's next PS4 firmware update is set to be a big one. Not only will players have the ability to download their digital games before launch, but the share functionality will be kicked up a notch by way of a fully-featured editing suite.

Click here to read more...

Get Master Reboot, Gun Monkeys, Ultratron & Home Sheep Home for 60p at Groupees

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
PC, PC games

Get Master Reboot, Gun Monkeys, Ultratron & Home Sheep Home for 60p at Groupees

Yesterday we reported that 37% of all Steam games are never played... and it's time to throw some more games onto your backlog with the Groupees Clash 3 bundle. You'll get eight games, including the fantastically fun Gun Monkeys, trippy Master Reboot and hectic retro-inspried Ultratron, for 60p.

And also Home Sheep Home 2, alongside some digital albums.

Not bad, considering that you'd hardly get any change for a packet of crisps.

Get 8 Steam Greenlight hopefuls for £2.00 on Indie Royale

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Indie Games, PC, PC games

Get 8 Steam Greenlight hopefuls for £2.00 on Indie Royale

Steam Greenlight is a dog-eat-dog popularity content, so every little helps. Hence it's time for the twelfth Indie Royale Debut bundle, which includes eight games that want your attention and votes.

You'll need to beat the minimum price (which changes periodically, but won't reach over £3.00 by my reckoning) to receive Gearcrack Arena, Luna’s Wandering Stars, Pester, Rot Gut, Selknam Defense, Storm over the Pacific, You Are Not A Banana: Chapter 1 & Yrminsul.

I can only personally vouch for Pester, which is a simple yet satisfying bullet hell/danmaku shooter that first released as an Xbox Live Indie Game. Naturally you won't get Steam codes (DRM free downloads and/or Desura only, I'm afraid) - until or unless the games eventually get Greenlit.

OPINION | VR Has No Place In The Living Room

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Oculus Rift, Project Morpheus, Virtual Reality, VR

OPINION | VR Has No Place In The Living Room

Virtual Reality is already one of the hottest technologies and topics in videogames, with both the Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus promising to revolutionise the way we experience our favourite hobby. The ability to enter our videogames, to be immersed and surrounded by them, is intoxicating - and we've been excited about VR's potential despite a fair few hurdles facing the fledgling venture.

Now that I've finally got to grips with Oculus Rift courtesy of Private Eye (the psychological thriller, not Ian Hislop's mag), both my greatest hopes and most worrying concerns about the resurgent technology have been set in stone.

VR is absolutely incredible, a huge leap forward for videogames and revolutionary new forms of interactive entertainment... but the very things that make it so amazing are likely to keep virtual reality out of the living room.

Project Morpheus may have a bit of a fight on its hands.

OPINION | VR Has No Place In The Living Room

Click here to read more...

Backlog by the numbers - 37% of all purchased Steam games have never been played

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
PC, PC games, Steam, Valve

Backlog by the numbers - 37% of all purchased Steam games have never been played

We've all got a Steam backlog. No matter how fastidious or frugal you are, those Humble Bundles and Christmas sales are just too tasty to resist.

Don't deny it - and don't worry, because you're in good company. In fact, it transpires that almost 37% of all Steam games ever purchased have never been played or even installed.

Click here to read more...

Private Eye: The Oculus Rift Thriller Preview | VR Voyeur

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Games previews, Jake Slack, Oculus Rift, PC, PC games, Virtual Reality, VR

Private Eye: The Oculus Rift Thriller Preview | VR Voyeur

Virtual Reality is all about immersion. You've doubtlessly watched us hacks overuse this somewhat nebulous term to within an inch of its life over the last few years, but being able to get into our games, to be absorbed by them and enter a new reality for a while, is what many of us strive for. Considering that Oculus Rift is designed to effectively create a new reality around us, it's absolutely perfect for atmospheric games.

Private Eye is all about harnessing that power for a psychological thriller set in 1950s New York, wherein players become a wheelchair-bound gumshoe forced to relive the events that led up to his disablement, all while cracking a new case. It surrounds you with the videogame equivalent of Rear Window, letting you look around the environments in 360 degrees and spy on your neighbours from an intimate new perspective, all while building a sinister and tense atmosphere around us. Considering that the pitch was created as part of a VR Jam by single developer Jake Slack, Private Eye is already rather impressive.

It also has the privilege of being my first hands-on with Oculus Rift -- should that be eyes on? -- so naturally I was nearly violently ill all over the fine folks at EGX Rezzed 2014. At least we managed to interview Slack afterwards.

Click here to read more...

"Cap 'em and shank 'em!" - Snoop Dogg will commentate on CoD: Ghosts in DLC voice pack

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Activision, DLC, Snoop Dogg

"It's the coolest game in the hood"

Yo dawg, so we heard you like Call Of Duty: Ghosts and Snoop Dogg. So we put Snoop Dogg... inside your Call Of Duty: Ghosts! OHHHHHHH[that's enough lame Pimp My Ride references for one day - Ed]

Click here to read more...

Massive LEGO sale hits Steam: get Marvel Super Heroes for a ridiculous £3.74!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
PC, PC games, Platformers, TT Games, Warner Bros. Interactive

Massive LEGO sale hits Steam: get Marvel Super Heroes for a ridiculous £3.74!

We're huge fans of Traveller's Tales' LEGO games, due to their accessible platforming, fun factor, respect for their source material and gently anarchic sense of humour, so this massive Steam sale is right up our alley. They're charging between £2.49 to £3.79 for the likes of Batman and LOTR, but the headline act is the fantastic LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, which costs less than £4. Do it.

Anyway, here's the selection - thanks to and courtesy of Webhead @ HUKD!