Developer: EKO Software
Publisher: 505 Games
Like any good zombie attack, you never see it coming and How to Survive will sink its teeth into your nights if you let your guard down while patiently awaiting the arrival of your shiny next-gen console.
EKO Software’s game is a top-down action-RPG that can be loosely compared with the likes of Diablo III or Dead Nation. After crash landing on a zombie-infested tropical island, you’ll need to scavenge for salvage and build weapons and armour to hold off the infected masses. The overall aim is to make a series of vehicle repairs via completing fetch quests. Ok, so not exactly a revolution of new ideas, but once How to Survive gets going, it’s hard to put down.
Combat is a mix of melee and improvised firearms. Everything must be built from scratch. From humble beginnings with a stick, you’ll go on to craft machetes, axes and spiked boomerangs. Melee attacks are assigned to RB, which isn’t ideal if I’m honest, as it can get uncomfortable after prolonged sessions. You can use basic swings or hold for a charged attack. If you stagger an enemy, you can initiate a grisly kill move, which usually pushes back nearby zombies too, giving you some essential breathing room.Click here to read more...
Dragon’s Crown is a fond throwback to classic side-scrolling beat ‘em ups like Streets of Rage, or more specifically, Golden Axe (you can totally ride dragons!). Stages involve going from left to right with a four-strong group consisting of knights, amazons, dwarves, elves, wizards or sorceresses. There's a boss with a health bar as wide as your TV at the end of each one too, with one of them being a clever nod to a certain Monty Python film. Sold yet?
You’re spoilt for choice, with six different character types to choose from. They’re ranked from beginner to expert, but to be honest you’ll be fine going with whichever takes your fancy from the start and you're allowed to have a few on the go at once.
There's been quite a bit of mild outcry (let's face it, it hasn't really been an uproar) over the female character design. And we can see why, those boobs are ridiculous and every time we see a female character in a story scene, they seem to be either borderline naked or lying in a ridiculously suggestive position.
Call it homage to classic art styles, call it immature character artists or call it pandering to a predominantly male audience. It's blatantly a case of all of the above. But does it deter from the gameplay? No. It's frequently so over the top it becomes quite amusing in a 'what were they thinking' or ‘why does that mermaid have a bum?' sort of way. You'll have seen worse in most pop music videos to be honest too. If anything, the muscular dwarve’s shorts concern us the most anyway.Click here to read more...
Thanks to Syzable at HotUkDeals.
Here's the latest batch of character gameplay videos for the upcoming side-scrolling beat em' up / action RPG hybrid, Dragon's Crown, for the PS3 and Vita. The Amazon warrior makes the previously-revealed top-heavy Sorceress look like a nun, with an outfit seemingly made of string. Questionable art direction aside, the game is looking like an old-school riot to play.Click here to read more...
Soul Sacrifice may not be a true system-seller, but as far as handheld games go, Keiji Inafune's deadly monster-hunting title is a deep and involving experience when you take it online. Teaming up to bring enormous bosses to their knees while deciding whether to spare or murder your erstwhile allies at a moment's notice is a uniquely engaging proposition, and one that deserves to attract a hardcore following over the coming months.
However, as Brendan explains in our 7/10 Soul Sacrifice review, it's also rather difficult to get into and requires a huge amount of investment to fully appreciate. To this end, dear Sorceror, I've compiled a list of ten hints, tricks and tactics that will help you survive in this vicious demonic world. If this is child's play to you, be sure to drop in some sage advice in the comments!
Soul Sacrifice offers a truly staggering wealth of attack skills, healing abilities, summons and buffs to equip, and you'll likely discover a fair few powerful spells that can be leant on for ridiculous damage. However, one of the game's unique quirks is that each spell's usage is strictly limited, meaning that it's actually possible to run out of attacks in the longer battles if you don't sacrifice smaller enemies and abuse the rare renewal shrines.Click here to read more...
Format: PS Vita
Developer: SCE Japan Studio
This is our concluding part of our Soul Sacrifice review. If you’d like to catch up on the basic game mechanics and the single player experience, you can read Part 1 here. Ok, up to date? This could go either way right? The remainder of my review is going to focus on the online multiplayer side of the game.
A range of options allows you to set up public or password protected games with invites via the Vita’s messaging system being a simple if slightly clunky affair. You can label your room to give other players an indication of which chapters you’re playing and if you prefer saving or sacrificing bosses. There were a healthy number of players online during the launch weekend, meaning I never had to wait long for players to join. Although it’s often worth waiting until you have a full group of four to take on some of the boss battles.
The lobby screen shows other player’s levels, giving you an indication on how choices may go when saving/sacrificing. Unless you’re hosting you can only see a brief description of the currently selected quest, if you are hosting though you have the advantage of choosing the quest and being able to see what loot is awarded upon completion.Click here to read more...
Format: PS Vita
Developer: SCE Japan Studio
Monster Hunter is a handheld system seller. That’s a fact, particularly in Japan. Yet we’ve only heard the slightest of rumours about the mega-series bringing its giant-chasing exploits to Sony’s underperforming handheld.
We don’t know if it’s a case of Sony not being able to agree a deal with Capcom, but until that champagne spraying day arises, Soul Sacrifice is here to carry the burden and an hefty amount of expectation in the face of the Vita’s barren landscape of recent or future releases.
The story begins with you waking up in an underworld jail with a talking book that insists on reliving the tale of a sorcerer and his road to infamy. You play as a character in the book as you read each chapter. The fleshy tome is essentially a menu system where you select missions or edit your skills and so on. The voice acting from the book and the narrator are coma-inducingly poor and the various stories that are mixed together as you play different mission strands while trying to straddle the difficulty curve are ultimate fantasy fan fiction dross.
The book uses the touchscreen (optional) to flick through pages, but it’s a cumbersome mess requiring too many touches, especially when you want to replay missions to XP grind or look at the mission rewards list to top up on certain items. But what of the missions themselves?Click here to read more...
Torchlight II does the business if you're a fan of action RPGs. In fact, it's easily one of the best ever made. Putting Diablo III to shame with massive heaps of content, LAN options and a huge new editor, this sensational effort from ex-Blizzard staffers warranted a perfect score last year, and can be yours for six quid (£1 dearer than Gamefly's spring voucher code deal, we admit).
Forget Diablo III, Torchlight II rocked our world late last year, showing the big studios how dungeon crawlers should be. Jon gave the game full marks in his review, praising the deep but accessible hack n' slash combat, engaging visuals and a huge exploreable world. At £14.99 it was great value and now it's at its lowest price yet, under a fiver, we couldn't recommend it more.
Thanks to Jas10 at HotUkDeals.
With ShopTo’s stock currently on back order, it means the price gap opens up even more thanks to this offer from Green Man Gaming. Overall, it means there is a saving of over £3 compared to the next cheapest retailer with stock.
While not without its faults (of which there are a few) DragDog provides a combat system that feels satisfying to control, and plays host to a huge open world in which there are many things to slay. At £15, it’s hard to argue with the price or the value for money here. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go and stop Jon and Matt from singing the menu music again... Thanks to Sheogorath @ HUKD!
Fancy a more action-heavy approach to your RPGs? Well take a look at the colourful world of Amalur. The setting lacks originality if you're familiar to the genre, but the combat more than makes up for it. The game is absolutely huge and it's well supported with DLC too if you need more questing. Check out Jon's review for a full rundown.
At nearly a fiver cheaper than anywhere else, this would be a good time to pick up Dragon's Dogma as it's one of those games that's taking its time to go down in price. If you're a fan of co-op but aren't keen on real people then you'll enjoy the pawn system where you can download AI partners crafted by other players to team up and take down huge dragons, griffins and more fantastical creatures. Check out Matt's review for more details.
Thanks to olioli86 at HotUkDeals.
As sales go, this one is rather good. ShopTo have dropped the price for both the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of Dragon’s Dogma, effectively halving current the price. While this does provide a saving of around £15, the bad news is that the game is on “back order,” so you may end up having to wait a week or so before it is dispatched.
While not without its faults (of which there are a few) DragDog provides a combat system that feels satisfying to control, and plays host to a huge open world in which there are many things to slay. At £15, it’s hard to argue with the price or the value for money here. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go and stop Jon and Matt from singing the menu music again... Thanks to jamesbenn54 @ HUKD!
Fans of old-school scrolling beat ‘em ups should fix their eyes all over this new Code of Princess trailer. Featuring some terrific-looking action that’s very reminiscent of games like Guardian Heroes, this melee combat-heavy RPG is coming out October 10th in North America. Sadly, no date has been confirmed yet for Europe, but we’ll keep our eyes peeled for you.Click here to read more...
Krater may be another top-down post apocalyptic action RPG, but it has a refreshing new way of doing business. Seeing similar games rely on horrendously dull visuals and grindingly miserable themes, indie developer Fatshark opted to create a vibrant and colourful take on the end of days, leading us through colourful and lush environments within an enormous bomb crater carved into a mythical realm once known as Sweden. Throughout this truly enormous and varied setting, complete with a real-time overworld boasting procedurally-generated random encounters, players lead a three-man team of bickering mercenaries to glory and riches. In terms of presentation, Krater is a breath of fresh air, and one that oozes personality and humour from underneath its mandatory gas mask.
Your units quote pop culture references at every opportunity. You'll work for a furniture company, IDEA, which mercilessly lampoons the Swedish flat-pack giant with hilarious results. NPCs banter and joke rather than cough up po-faced busywork. You'll explore verdant forests, neon towns and crystalline mines, all of which are packed with opportunities for advancement and wealth beyond imagining. Just to finish off what proved to be an exceptional pitch, Krater promised to play much like a cross between Diablo and Baldur's Gate, mixing real-time combat with detailed character development and squad mechanics.
Krater almost sounds too good to be true. And it nearly is, though without hesitation, I can tell you that Fatshark's new title is definitely good.
Click here to read more...