I'm slightly concerned regarding the guys over at Greenman Gaming with them still rocking out their birthday celebrations. I feel a massive gaming hangover (the worst type) coming along sometime soon!
Today has a handful of new titles added to their flash sale with some great titles at even better prices:
Obviously at these prices stock is limited so you will need to be quick to grab a bargain.Click here to read more...
I really enjoyed playing through Dead Men with one of my housemates, it's a pretty awesome co-op experience with plenty of action that should keep anyone amused. If you're playing through by yourself though, it's considerably less fun because of the awful AI. It's definitely worth paying out £1.47 though, after all that's less than a pack of sandwiches, and you'll be saving almost £3.50 on the next best offers coming in from Zavvi and The Hut. Thanks to capelli @ HUKD.
We live in the world of the sequel, the remake, the annual release, the safe bet, the lazy rehash. Occasionally a new name might emerge, a new IP (Intellectual Property) that hopes to become the next big franchise, but they're generally seen to be too risky in the world of the multi-million pound costs of developing and marketing a game.
Some sequels are essential though and 2011 will be no different with Uncharted 3, Mass Effect 3 and Batman: Arkham City already driving us nuts with the wait. Sometimes though, when we see an announcement for a sequel, our hearts sink, we question the sanity of developers/publishers and usually have a bit of a fight around the office to see which poor sod will have to review it.
So here's a look at the sequels that haven't been announced yet, but in all probability will be in the near future. Albeit with slightly more marketable titles.
Last year Io Interactive took the unusual approach of making an ugly game even uglier for the sequel and fixing almost nothing. You have to admire their work ethic of 'f**k the public, they'll buy anything, so why bother?' Handheld camera angles, super-blocky lo-res images (yay it's like YouTube said my PS3 in disgust), childish controversy and bullets that still seemed miserably slow. What's the point of well-conceived multiplayer modes when shooting a gun is such a broken experience? A tie-in movie might just work instead, as the story had a sharp pace to it and we've all enjoyed the Michael Mann-inspired moments, but in all honesty we wish this pair of old dogs had died tied to those chairs in Shanghai.Click here to read the what other unannounced games have got Brendan all worked up.
Kane and Lynch are back, although if you played the first game you might question why, for an all new adventure. Lynch has settled down in Shanghai and Kane's in town for a deal, but of course all hell breaks loose, they accidentally kill a corrupt politician's daughter and find themselves on the run from pretty much anyone with a gun it would seem.
Amazon are currently selling the Limited Edition (which comes with a few tidbits, though not many, of exclusive DLC in the form of maps) for £29.99, which is around £3 cheaper than nearest price for the game, Ltd Ed or otherwise.
Dog Days is not exactly the finest game out there but it has some interesting ideas. You'll have heard all about the dizzying visual effects, the potty-mouthed mature storyline (of sorts), the visceral combat and fast-paced action...but it only really lasts four or five hours in singleplayer.
The multiplayer is where the action's really at, with several game modes predicated on lies, deceit and tense paranoia. It might be worth a punt if you find yourself gaming over LIVE quite a bit, and I did give it a 7 in my review on account of its innovative multiplayer components, but if you're looking for a striking third person shooter to bust through alone, you won't really get your money's worth and you can dock the game a couple of points.
Thanks to Boz at HUKD
A trained mercenary and a man that suffers from periodic bouts of psychosis are a pretty unlikely pair for a co-op shooter, but the unconventional partnership only adds to the charm of the game.
If you're considering picking up the sequel and missed out on the original then you can get your hands on a copy for £13.49 from Cool Shop UK, which is exactly £6.50 cheaper than the next best offer of £19.99 coming in from FindAddBuy.
You might be wondering how the two met each other at this point. Well, the answer's not as surprising as you might think they meet whilst being transported to death row and after fighting their way to freedom they get involved with a gang known as "The Seven" and things escalate from there.
The combat in the game really depends on which character you're in control of, Kane favours precision whereas Lynch charges into the fray guns blazing. Their stealth takedowns also reflect their backgrounds, Kane's training allows him to dispatch unsuspecting enemies quickly and silently whereas Lynch's violent impulses take over completely and he'll end up brutally beating his foes to the ground.
Taking control of Kane is pretty much like any other shooter experience on the market, however playing as Lynch is a little bit more interesting especially when he starts to succumb to his illness as he begins to hallucinate, which'll impair his judgement of a situation and the consequences'll almost certainly land you in hot water.
The story takes shape before your eyes wonderfully, however if you're playing by yourself you won't get anywhere near as much enjoyment from the experience as you would if you were playing through the campaign with a friend. It's not a bad game by any means though and you should definitely check it out if you get the chance.
Speaking to Examiner, Quantic Dream's David Cage has revealed that the studio behind Heavy Rain is currently working on two separate projects, although he wouldn't give out any clues as to what these titles would be be.
We currently work on two very different projects,' said Cage. 'Often, after a long and challenging project like Heavy Rain, it is difficult for the team to get excited again about a new idea. This is absolutely not the case at the moment at Quantic and all the team seems enthusiastic about the possibility of other projects. The team and the company continue to grow in experience, confidence and talent.'
The QD boss went on to suggest that the positive response to Heavy Rain has made his studio synonymous with experimentation when it comes to new IPs, a tag that Cage is keen to push as far as he can: 'We are not going to play it safe from now, we are going to use this credibility to continue to take risks, give ourselves exciting challenges and try to invent new ways of playing.'
It had been thought that QD were working on PS3-exclusive Horizon, although Cage refuted that last month, saying that the studio were 'working on new tech'. Still, it's not inconceivable that he was lying. Either way, two for one from one of the most in-demand developers in the business sounds pretty damn good to us. Watch this space. [VG247]
Desperate duo Kane and Lynch are set to return later this year, stirring up a serious shitstorm in Shanghai, and IO Interactive have revealed that it's going to get released a week earlier than expect. North American action fans will be able to see if this second game can improve on the painfully evident shortcomings of the first from the 17th of August, with PAL gamers able to jump into the fray with the gruesome twosome jut three days later on the 20th.
Check out the latest trailer above and you can see what Jon thought of the recent exclusive multiplayer demo by clicking here.
With games like Alan Wake, Blur and Split/Second falling short of their sales targets it pretty unsurprising to find that overall market sales appear to be down 16% on the figure from this time last year. Hardware sales have been hit the hardest, dropping by 32% this year, with software down 10% on top of that.
Things looks pretty bleak, but it's worth taking into consideration the fact that these figures don't take pre-owned sales into account. The pre-owned market, much to the chagrin of games publishers everywhere, is a big one, and it's still growing. The expansion of stores such as CEX, not to mention the ever-expanding shelf space in the local GAME given over to second-hand copies, is proof of that.
ELSA director general Mike Rawlinson had this to say about the external factors too:
'UK consumers are also getting their gaming entertainment in a variety ways. They are increasingly downloading video games from websites, and are playing games on their mobiles or through social networking sites – not only on consoles. This is proof that interactive entertainment is expanding way beyond its traditional boundaries.'
It's not been a great twelve months for any market really, but I think the lack of pre-owned data is absolutely key to these results. It also explains why companies like EA and THQ are looking so heavily into trying to make buying new as attractive an option as possible. [Guardian]
Hello Games' co-founder Sean Murray, the man responsible for bringing the excellent Joe Danger into the world, has hit out at Xbox LIVE Arcade, defending the studio's decision to release the critically acclaimed motorcycling gem only on the PSN by branding XBLA as a 'slaughterhouse' for small developers.
'XBLA is kind of a slaughterhouse for smaller developers,' said Murray, speaking at today's Develop conference. There are games that do amazingly well. But there's two titles released every week and a lot of those are falling in that 25,000 or less category.'
It's not just fighting rhetoric, Murray brought a whole bunch of figures to the table to back up his statement with numbers showing that 47% of XBLA games sold less than 25,000 copies, 23% in the region of 100,000 copies, 13% around 200,000 copies and only 17% over 200,000 copies. Apparently Hello Games broke even on the game in under twenty four hours and had shifted 50,000 copies within the first week on the PSN.
We've been fairly vocally critical of Microsoft for squandering talent and making life absurdly difficult and this isn't the first time that LIVE has come under fire (don't mention iPlayer to an Xbox owner...we'll just break down in tears). But this is not good publicity for them at all. It's true, the arcade market is hugely competitive, but Murray's statements can be taken to suggest that quality will still win out on the PSN rather than the melting pot of XBLA. [Eurogamer]
Looks like Steam are softening the blow of having to go back to work after the weekend by offering up another list of amazing games at some very reasonable prices!
Bear in mind though that these deals will all expire at around 6pm tomorrow, so you'll want to jump online and start wiring your money across to Steam ASAP.
This was our introduction to Gordon Freeman and the various creatures that he has to battle his way through, in what was and still is an epic first person shooter. One of the great things about the game is the lack of cutscenes, instead everything occurs in-front of your eyes and as a result you never actually see Gordon, which really makes it feel like you're becoming Gordon instead of merely controlling him. Also, to make the game a little bit more realistic, the developers decided you wouldn't be able to find weapons and items just lying about the environment, instead you'll have to search sensible locations in the surroundings, such as lockers and bodies. Half-Life virtually defines the modern FPS, if you haven't played it buy it now and prepare yourself for a wondrous experience. I'm not even disappointed...I'm actually a little jealous.
The bundle includes both games in the series so far and you'll make a saving of 50p and a lot of hassle over picking them up separately. Taking part in gun battles during both Max Payne games is something truly special and the bullet time mechanics are so much fun that you'll want to jump into them at any given opportunity. Also, the first game in particular contains some of the creepiest scenes that I've ever witnessed whilst playing a video game, and anyone who's played through the game should know what I mean when I start talking about following blood trails in a dark room whilst all you can hear is a screaming baby. The second offers that rare thing in videogaming...a noir that actually works.
At £3.49 you'll be making a saving of over £1 on the next best deal for this explosive co-op experience. Teaming up a psychotic killer with a trained mercenary makes for an interesting if somewhat unstable partnership that works incredible well on the screen. The single player is a bit of a take it or leave it affair, but I loved playing through the main story in co-op mode with one of my housemates, although I was somewhat disappointed that it wasn't a little bit longer. The game contains some of the most brutal hand-to-hand takedowns that I've ever seen; as you'd expect from a trained mercenary Kane is able to stealthily sneak up behind his victims to take them out quickly and quietly; Lynch on the other hand will shockingly beat the unsuspecting enemy into a bloody pulp. Check out the Fragile Alliance mode for some innovative multiplayer action too.
Thanks to jonobailey @ HUKD
At over £10 cheaper than the next best price, this is one hell of a pre-order for PS3 and 360 gamers. It’s like a PC game price!
The first game may have been a bit rubbish, but we’re kind of glad it’s getting a sequel to build on its obvious potential. There’s even a film on the way with Bruce Willis in the role of Kane and rumours pinging around about who’s going to play the nutjob, white-trash schizo, Lynch, including the likes of Billy Bob Thornton (potentially great) and Jamie Foxx (erm ok then).
Before that though we’ll be getting our teeth into the game’s sequel which is getting a visual overhaul to make it stand out in the overcrowded third-person shooter market. The game’s camera will be going for a handheld ‘gritty’ feel with it shaking around adding to the chaotic atmosphere of the shootouts. Think Cloverfield and YouTube. Current ‘gameplay’ trailers haven’t really let us get a good look at this outside of cutscenes but we’re eager to try anything new.
The action will take place over a few days in Shanghai as gaming’s odd couple team up again, but with players now stepping into the shoes of Lynch instead. You know, the one that’s completely f****d in the head.
There will be co-op modes, but more importantly the Fragile Alliance mode will return for multiplayer. This was an excellent online mode in the first game. It involved two teams, cops vs. robbers, during a heist, with the robbers teaming up to collect as much loot as possible before trying to escape. However at any point, robbers could turn on each other to try and earn a bigger share. Anyone they killed though would come back as a cop, seeking revenge. A fantastic idea, only let down by the poor shooting gameplay.
So it’s great to hear that the aiming and cover system are getting fixed too. Combine that with the new camera system and it would seem that Io Interactive has taken the first game’s criticism on board and made steps to smash their way into gamer’s homes once again.
Thanks to HappyCanMan for the find at HotUkDeals
Kane and Lynch is unlikely to muscle into your Top Ten list but there's enough fun to be had to make Amazon's bargain price of £1.89 more than worth it. This price is less than half that of next best competitor, Tesco Entertainment who are selling it for £4.47.
Adam "Kane" Marcus is en route to his new home in a death row prison cell (which he earned after his conviction of the manslaughter of 25 Venezuelan civilians) when fellow detainee, James Seth Lynch, hints of the possibility of a break out before they reach their destination. Their escape turns out to be a kidnapping and soon the pair find themselves in the clutches of the remaining members of thoroughly dodgy group The7.
The OTT story and characters are the best thing about Kane and Lynch and if you're lucky they'll capture your attention to the extent that you will be willing to overlook all the game's flaws.
One of the biggest is problems is that the multiplayer is a tad dodgy and if you wish to play offline with a friend, then you will need an XBox 360 controller in order to do so.
These practical considerations aside, the game itself is also saddled with a vast swathe of flaws, such as its dodgy cover system, poor AI and fairly lacklustre graphics. That said it's not difficult to recommend a game that costs less than £2 and there is enough in Kane and Lynch: Dead Men to make it worth the pennies.
Thanks to javea at Hotukdeals!