Publisher: KISS Ltd
Darkout creates atmosphere better than any crafting sandbox game I've ever played.
Though heavily influenced by Terraria and Minecraft, this new procedural indie effort swaps lurid voxels for dense backgrounds and a rich colour palette, stranding us on a twilight forest world where shadowy predators hunt us through rippling bioluminescent foliage. Our unlucky astronaut is forced to subsist from the most primitive basics, crafting primitive shelters and tools from whatever they can find before eventually bringing outrageous future technology to bear, all while desperately trying to keep the lights on. There's a sense of real purpose, of threat, despair and desperation, that you rarely get from a procedural craft'em up.
Mind you, the player character model sticks out like a sore thumb: a clunky cutesy cartoon caricature who undoes almost all of Allgraf's good work in an instant. They've promised to improve the art assets across the board, but I'm afraid that this is a symptom of Darkout's biggest flaw.
Despite not being an Early Access title, it's neither complete nor fully ready yet.Click here to read more...
Hot on the heels of Resistance: Burning Skies' multiplayer being thoroughly detailed last week, Nihilistic Software has revealed a new gametype for the Vita FPS. Entitled 'Survival,' you might instantly expect it to be a standard horde mode, but it's actually a team-based competitive versus experience where a rapidly-depleting squad of humans are set upon by unlimited hordes of player-controlled Chimera.Click here to read more...
Platform: XBLA | SEN (slated for April)
A haggard survivor clutches a machete in his trembling hands as you slowly advance towards him. He's done well to survive this long in Haventon, months after 'The Event' turned your hometown into a living hell of choking dust, violent looters, food shortages and earthquakes. "Just keep on walking," he shouts, voice quivering, and you briefly consider it. He's no threat, after all, just another broken man alone in an unremittingly hostile world. You could walk away and never see him again.
But after a near fatal run-in with some depraved scroungers, you desperately need the medical supplies stashed in his makeshift rooftop camp.
Your pistol is empty, but the survivor doesn't know that. Calling his bluff, you raise it and order him to surrender, yet he doesn't cave. He's been through too much to back down, and matches your gaze in a grim stalemate. Knowing that he'll attack the moment he realises your deception, you shout at him to back up to the edge of the rooftop, close the gap and kick him into the yawning chasm below. A single bottle of painkillers is your sole reward for killing an innocent man... but tragically, the decision was probably the right one. Who knows when or even if you'll find more supplies? You'll survive. And that's what matters.
This is just a single optional encounter in I Am Alive: an unflinchingly raw survival simulator that's unlike anything else on the market.
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Everything's better when you work together. Infinity Ward are well aware of this basic fact of life, and duly supplemented Modern Warfare 2's singleplayer campaign and competitive multiplayer suite with the Special Operations mode. This feature took the community by storm and created countless inseparable gaming power couples, so Modern Warfare 3 plans to up the cooperative ante with what promises to be one of the most hectic and exciting co-op gametypes on the market.
Welcome to Survival Mode.
Players start each match armed solely with a pistol in what the rep affectionately referred to as the "shotgun run." Enemies poured into the dusty desert level from two distinct choke points, armed only with pump action shotguns, grenades and a distinct disdain for self-preservation. Quick headshots and knife executions soon reward you with an enormous supply of buckshot (stripped from the ragtag miltia that dared to take you on), but as you'd expect, each subsequent wave is more dangerous, better-equipped and downright unpredictable than the last. Attack dogs, exploding dogs and heavily-armed foes all provide an increasingly stiff challenge, and one that's impossible to survive without close communication, overlapping fields of fire and constant repositioning.Click here to continue reading our MW3 Spec Ops Survival preview!
Picture the scene. You're a lone, beleagured mercenary on his way back from a dangerous mission. You've spent all of your ammunition, used all of your bandages and are barely able to keep putting one foot in front of the other. A meagre reward and scant praise await you back at base... but in your way lies a towering railway bridge. Several soldiers patrol the road below; and without money to bribe them, they'll surely cut you to ribbons with their superior firepower before you land your first shot. Unfortunately, the only other way through is a cramped tunnel that courses with crackling electrical anomalies. A single misstep will result in instant death.
It's the devil's own choice... but then then you spot something out of the corner of your eye. A patch of sky where there should be a barbed wire fence. Hoping beyond hope, you heave yourself up the embankment with your last ounce of strength... and there, as a single ray of light in your bleak and hopeless adventure, is a gap in the fence. You'll be home soon.
If you haven't worked it out already, I'm referring to S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow Of Chernobyl... but I don't really love the gap itself. Rather, I love what it represents: meaningful choice and roughing it.
Click here to discover what Jon's driving at >>