In today's episode of Game Night, the trio are the height of bro-fessionalism as they take on side-scrolling action-fest Broforce from Free Lives. Trust me when I say, it's bro-sesstial viewing for everyone.
Just remember - it's not over 'til it's BRO-VER. OOOOOOOOOOOOOOH.
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.
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...
As I write this, I'm listening to Martin O'Donnell's Rock Anthem For Saving The World. I have the Halo albums shuffled up in a Spotify playlist. Greatest Journey from Halo 3 is up next, and I'm steeling myself for epic Warthog flashbacks from that game's majestic final run. Under Cover of Night aurally describes the midnight before a dawn of fire -- the calm before the storm. The Overture from ODST takes me back to slinking around the Covenant-strewn streets of New Mombasa before Never Forget almost makes me shed a tear. Not for the plot of intergalactic war and the loss and despair that comes with it, but rather for nostalgic good times that have yet to be bettered.
So much of my enjoyment of the Halo series comes as a direct result of Martin O'Donnell's (and Michael Salvatori's) work. The Halo suite itself is an iconic theme that makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. It's a succession of strings that just says, Oh we got this!
In spite of his long service to the Halo franchise, it's the versatility shown in the games that don't feature Master Chief that gave me hope for O'Donnell's work on Destiny.
This week, though, presumably with much of the work on that game complete, Bungie terminated the contract of their in-house composer. Depending on whose account you read, it's either a straightforward affair, or possibly something a little fishy.Click here to read more...
If you read my Nosgoth preview earlier in the week, you'll know that things are coming along very nicely indeed with Square's F2P PvP arena shooter. In fact, I'll let Past Matt tell you exactly what I thought:
I had a blast with Nosgoth but I want to see more. We were only playing 4-v-4 team deathmatch. I want more modes, inventive game types. I'd love to see bigger maps and more combatants. Beacham mentioned the War For Nosgoth mode, which is basically the ranked tournament mode for the game that'll become available at regular time intervals, but I'm still curious as to how Psyonix and Square are planning on keeping players hooked for the long haul. I had fun, sure, but I'll need more if I'm going to invest time, let alone money, in the long term. Hopefully, we'll be able to bring you an update on that soon as we jump into the game's beta.
As for that last line, well, we're in! And to give you a better idea of how matches unfold in Nosgoth, here's a little Dealspwn Playthrough video showcasing my first match in the beta, and delivering some more information on the three basic classes for each faction and how battles unfold in the war between Humans and Vampires.
0RBITALIS is game all about flinging a satellite into the orbit(s) of various gravitationally significant bodies and trying to keep it within the boundaries of the onscreen star system for a distinct handful of seconds. It's a simple-but-tricky little game, and it requires a fair amount of thought. You can't simply bumble in and hope for the best beyond the first few levels.
The game was originally conceived by Alan Zucconi for Ludum Dare 28 last year, and the theme of the game jam was "You Only Get One".
In the case of 0RBITALIS, that "one" refers to the satellite itself. You only have one shot at plotting the course and measuring out the power of projection, and then it's up to physics to decide what happens to your little space module. You move the cursor to alter your trajectory, and then launch your craft with a single click.Click here to read more...
Over the last few months Carbine Studios have been slowly pulling the curtain back on a number of features for WildStar that, up until now, we had barely seen anything about. Customisation options were one such thing, Adventures were another, and we recently got a look at some of the Raids players will be (almost certainly) punished by during the developer panel at PAX East. However, one topic has been left until the very last second to discuss and it’s a pretty big one – Warplots. This PvP-centric mode aims to kick team-based combat up a notch with something that is part base raiding, part tower defence, and all-out warfare as two teams of 40 max-level players duke it out for supremacy.
It’s basically as if the original incarnation of World of Warcraft’s Alterec Valley and indie title Orcs Must Die! had a baby, and then many Chua were rained upon it for kicks – that’s pretty much Warplots in a nutshell.
You can get a general overview by watching the latest in-game engine-powered Flick embedded above, but you’re probably after some more details or something, and thankfully I have many to throw at you. Earlier this week, select members of the press were invited to watch a demonstration of Warplots in action, with a rather ill Lead PvP Designer Jen Gordy (who was suffering from PAX Flu at the time) providing commentary on what we were watching whilst giving us more detail into what options would be available for potential Warparties (yep, that means no hands-on experience just yet, but stay tuned – I assure you we’ll have something in the near future.)
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.
Click here to read more...
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...
Things are getting a little more interesting of late in The Elder Scrolls Online, especially now that I've reached Cyrodiil. There'll be a big, fat article PvP and the heartland of Tamriel later this week, but for now here are eight reason why The Elder Scrolls Online is filling me with ambivalence...
I LOVE... Skill Progression
The organic process of getting better by doing something repeatedly has long been a staple of the Elder Scrolls games in the past. But it's not how MMOs have traditionally worked. Thankfully, TESO said bollocks to tradition and stuck to its guns, proving all the better for it. Thanks to the implementation of Skyshards, there's not so much pressure put on levelling, instead giving more weight to exploration. Besides, actually improving your skills works outside of general levelling anyway, meaning that whatever you're doing out in the wide world, you're probably getting better at something.
Reached level 23 and want to turn your Dragonknight into a staff-wielding bringer of rain? Well you can.
I HATE... Level Grinding
The gap between levels becomes interminable pretty quickly. I get that MMO developers want to keep you playing for as long as possible, and that TESO isn't all about the rush to the endgame content, but this is ridiculous. Combat counts for virtually nothing when it comes to rising through the ranks, nor does exploration or crafting or anything, really. It's not long at all before progression slows to a crawl, and that's even when you're doing every quest that you find and battling every creature you come across. Making you work for it is one thing, but too often TESO turns into a bit of an interminable slog.Click here to read more...
In videogames we all have our favourite franchises. As much as we crave the new and different IP, there's something reassuring and fulfilling that comes from a franchise. Previous instalments have allowed us to form a love affair with characters, mechanics, plot and gameplay that have created a melting pot of an experience that appeals to us as an individual gamer. From Angry Birds to Zork, there's a franchise out there for everyone.
But it's perhaps easy to forget when we clamber over the latest Mario or FIFA game that franchises themselves are a poisoned chalice, that hang on a knife-edge (or indeed insert over-used metaphor here) for developers, because they present a bit of a headache. And it's not a headache that simple painkillers can cure. Because franchise development is a bit of a paradox. Fans love your franchise for what it is, so you need to stick to that formula. But heaven forbid of course if developers don't progress the idea in future instalments. Because as fans, we always demand more, and never more so than when we are talking about our beloved franchises.
But how did we create this problem in the first place?Click here to read more...
UPDATE: Please note that the weekend beta keys we are giving away will only work with EU NCSOFT accounts. If you do not have an EU account, there are other websites that will be giving out keys that will work. You can find a list of all the sites giving away codes here. Apologies for the confusion here folks, and if you have any other issues please let us know so we can help you out!
ORIGINAL POST: Looking to get in on the action of the upcoming WildStar weekend beta, which is set to take place between 18th - 20th April? Well, if you haven't put money down for a pre-order (with which you will gain automatic access to every beta weekend between now and the release on June 3rd) you may want to hit the jump to find out how to snab yourself a key, as we have 2000 weekend beta keys to give away.Click here to find out how to get one!
Psyonix and Square Enix's free-to-play, asymmetrical PvP shooter Nosgoth is in closed beta right now, and we had a chance to check out some of the new classes and muck about in the game last week.
You can check out my Nosgoth preview here, and here are a few thought I had following my hands-on:
I had a blast with Nosgoth but I want to see more. We were only playing 4-v-4 team deathmatch. I want more modes, inventive game types. I'd love to see bigger maps and more combatants. Beacham mentioned the War For Nosgoth mode, which is basically the ranked tournament mode for the game that'll become available at regular time intervals, but I'm still curious as to how Psyonix and Square are planning on keeping players hooked for the long haul. I had fun, sure, but I'll need more if I'm going to invest time, let alone money, in the long term. Hopefully, we'll be able to bring you an update on that soon as we jump into the game's beta for an extended stint.
Afterwards, I sat down for a chat with Square Enix game director Bill Beacham to talk about Nosgoth, how important its been to the dev team to leverage the extensive lore that the universe and the Kain IP have to offer, the challenges faced in creating a game that has two tyeams with very different playstyles, and how Square Enix are looking to make a F2P game that is all about growing the community first and monetising second.
Developer: Neocore Games
I can't wait for Van Helsing's next adventure.
Neocore Games came out swinging with a fantastic idea: a massive loot-grinding RPG delivered in three episodes, each lasting 12-15 hours apiece with save file compatibility. We therefore get an enormous slab of gunslinging, swordswinging, swashbuckling and teh phattest of lewtz delivered on our terms, allowing us to test the waters for £11.99 apiece and buy the whole thing for the same price as Diablo III's expansion pack. The first episode was solid, versatile, challenging and off-kilter; a real rip-roaring adventure that didn't take itself too seriously yet was deadly serious about its gameplay.
Now the legendary monster hunter finds himself defending a city under siege by the villainous General Harker, who throws an army of steampunk horrors at the grim defenders. It's time to don the floppy hat, grab our ghostly companion and unleash our inner Van Helsing... with a little more strategy this time around.Click here to read more...
Nosgoth is a free-to-play, third-person, asymmetrical PVP arena shooter set in the Legacy of Kain universe.
Frankly just typing that sentence feels weird; wrong, almost. But for all of the scepticism I had about Nosgoth, it plays pretty damn well and is underpinned by an absolute truckload of lore. Psyonix and Square Enix have their eyes on an untapped niche in the free-to-play, competitive market. They're gunning for the e-sports scene and are determined to make a splash, not by copying the successes of those games such as League of Legends or Warface that have gone before, but by trying something rather different.
Nosgoth is certainly that. Pitting Humans against Vampires, the game sets teams of four players against one another, before changing things up at halftime and swapping teams over to the other faction. We've seen that most recently in games of Capture the Flag in Titanfall, forcing players to attack and defend both sides of the map, but here the implementation is designed to showcase the two very different playstyles of the warring factions.
In order to be good at Nosgoth, you need to be adept with both Humans and Vampires.Click here to read more...
In the second part of the team's adventures in Naval Strike expansion, the trio take the fight to the Nasha Strike map for more boat-based shenanigans. Expect more death on the high seas, before a failed attempt at playing on Wave Breaker.
At this year's Gadget Show Live, Carl got a chance to speak to Christopher Payton of Rebellio about the upcoming shooter Sniper Elite 3, which was on show to the public for the first time. The pair discuss the improvements over V2, the various options players can taken in the new expanded environments, and the transition developing on the current crop of consoles.
Stay tuned for a hands-on impressions piece onsite soon!
The trio return to Battlefield 4 this week to check out the latest addition to its multiplayer - the Naval Strike map set. In the first part of two, the trio head to the Lost Islands, play around in all of the boats, and experiment with various flying techniques in the helicopter. Stay tuned for Part 2 and our full review tomorrow!
In case you haven't noticed, we're big fans of karaoke here at Dealspwn.com. There's little more enjoyable than thoroughly embarrassing ourselves by tipsily belting out awful versions of classic songs from the diaphragm, and videogames have long been on hand to scratch our itch; from SingStar and Lips to the likes of We Sing and even Rock Band.
But there's a problem. Every time a new karaoke game comes out, we find ourselves gravitating to three or four songs in the track list, restricted by the 20-40 tunes on the disc. There's always filler material, there's always bumf that literally no-one likes to sing, while themed sequels and track packs leave fans of other decades or genres sitting glumly on the sofa and wishing that they'd gone to that other party instead.
SingOn aims to change all that. We've seen so many games trying to become "services" over the last few years, usually with disastrous results, but for Karaoke games this new startup makes perfect sense. It's effectively a free client that grants players access to a continually-updated streaming roster of hundreds of songs throughout numerous genres, on their own terms. Whether charging a couple of quid for a night, a few Pounds for weekend access or spending the price of a regular game for a year's unfettered use, SingOn is all about letting us choose exactly when and exactly what we want to sing.
The passionate developers describe SingOn as the "next generation of Karaoke games," and though it's rolling out on PS3 first, PlayStation Network is just the very first step in a plan for global domination across multiple platforms.Click here to read more...
Titanfall on Xbox 360 is great fun. It's not as sharp as its Xbox One sibling, nor is it as impressive in terms of framerate, but at its core it's still the same fast-paced, exhilarating experience that we've come to find on the other platforms thus far.
Put simply, I'm not entirely sure that the difference between the Xbox 360 version and the Xbox One version is worth forking out £400 for.
We're nearly five months on now from the release of the Xbox One and the PS4, and we've seen prices fall a little in that time, but I'd still posit that there's little reason to invest in the advent of this new generation of video game consoles, and the Titanfall situation perfectly illustrates why: we're not ready to let go of last-gen just yet.
We speculated that the delay of the 360 version, and the fact that no-one had seen or heard anything much about it until a couple of days before release, might have been because it was crap. That's a fairly tried-and-tested strategy in the games industry: if you have a crap game it's either vertical slice time (hello Aliens), or you follow that old adage of if you haven't got anything good to say, don't say anything at all. It's all helped along by the fact that 2014 has seen some of the most hilariously overblown scrutiny of games and visuals and technical specifications and comparisons that a tiny, tiny, very vocal niche care about. As soon as you put something out there in the virtual ether, it's going to get torn apart, and so we often jump to the conclusion that no news is probably bad news.
But in this instance it would seem that the reverse is true: that the Xbox 360 port is good enough to have probably posed a challenge to the more expensive, pleasebuyaconsoleforthis Xbox One version of Titanfall, and that says much about the fragility of this first year of next-gen gaming. With third parties going for an expansive approach, and hamstringing the potential of current-gen versions to allow for feature-complete last-gen games, the exclusive big hitters matter more for Sony and Microsoft, and it makes sense to try and make things as easy for the likes of Titanfall and inFamous: Second Son as is possible. Given the choice between forking out forty quid for a really enjoyable version of Titanfall on Xbox 360 and ten times that for Titanfall on Xbox One, many might have gone for the former over the latter.Click here to read more...
The more I inspect the world of Tamriel in The Elder Scrolls Online, the more I'm filled with a sense of slight unease. It is as if instead of romping across the mountains of Skyrim or wading through the marshes of Vvardenfell as in previous games, carving out a niche for myself in a living, breathing world, I find myself in a museum or sorts, or a grand theatrical historical experience, surrounded by actors and other tour audience members. Tamriel in TESO is beginning to feel more like a showroom (a very big one) than a world that's actually alive.
The presence of other characters is beginning to grate when it comes to PvE, being out in the big wide world. It just doesn't really fit, and I'm having to suspend an enormous amount of disbelief. Having played WildStar for hours on end, I have to say that NCsoft's game made sense -- you're on a frontier world, scrambling to do everything that you can to carve out a niche. It would follow that certain pillars of the community would be in demand, and I could more easily ignore multiple characters swarming about the place. There are obvious benefits to having fellow adventurers alongside you for certain areas that absolutely require a group, but on a moment to moment level, it's sometimes a little disconcerting.
Part of that has to do with the fact that the game seems to not know exactly what it wants to be. Exploring the frozen tundra of Bleakrock, having persevered with the Ebonheart Pact, occasionally feels a lot like playing Skyrim, and there are moments when I've found myself wandering the wastes in relative solitude. But often the constructs are a bit of a lie, with objects and bodies that might otherwise be interactive rendered inert here, like window dressing -- serving the showroom vibe rather than contributing to the world.
That said, I rocked up to an abandoned fishing camp and got out my rod and stayed for ten minutes or so, catching fish to later sell. By the time I left, five more people had arrived, and there we were, angling in snowy serenity. Then we teamed up and went off to deal with the Frozen Man and his riddles, only one member of our group glitched out and couldn't complete the quest and wasted half an hour thanks to a bug.
There's so much I'm enjoying about TESO, but it always seems like there's a caveat just around the corner.Click here to read more...