So first we have the Tetris sci-fi film, and now we have this: Asteroids: Outposts, a new survival MMO by Atari based in the… Asteroids universe, I guess.
Described as an “open world, sandbox style, survival experience,” Asteroids: Outposts puts you in the role of a space miner who must stake their claim on an asteroid and defend it from players in “challenging multiplayer gameplay”. Alliances of some kind with other players can be formed, and the titular asteroid showers are a source of both wealth and threat.
There’s not much information out about this now, but you can sign up for the mailing list here. Atari says that this new game will appeal to both fans of the classic Asteroids game, and to fans of expansive MMOs as well.
My thoughts: This sounds great. It’s the very last thing I expected to hear about today, but now that I’ve heard about it, I can’t think of a reason as to why it hasn’t been done before. If this pans out, it’s a safe bet that this is going to be my game.
The level of critical acclaim for what in my eyes is one of the worst games of 2015 so far is puzzling me like nothing in even The Talos Principle ever did. Apotheon is receiving virtually no serious negative press – Steam reviews are at 96% positive, it’s receiving ratings upwards of 7 across the board, and hell, Destructoid has declared it “apotheonestly great”.
Are they being hypnotized by some kind of swinging pendulum hidden in the game’s stylish pottery art design that only affects professional journalists? They must be, just as they are every time an indie with spunk comes bounding down the aisles of the digital store, and explodes all over every shelf in the vicinity.
This game is a hot fucking mess. A sometimes fine, sometimes knee-deep layer of baffling design and broken interactivity has seeped all the way through to the bottom of Apotheon. Next to no facets of the game are spared from the onslaught of unpolished gameplay.
In one of the more interesting announcements to come of the original Warhammer fantasy setting since… Blood Bowl, I guess, there comes the clumsily-titled Warhammer: End Times Vermintide.
It’s a co-op first-person horde shooter. That feels really good to say is going to exist.
Players will choose from five “heroes”, which will fill various archetypes with different playstyles, abilities, gear and personalities. Environments ranging from “the top of the Magnus Tower to the bowels of the Under Empire” are promised, which I hope means something to some of you. The primary, and seemingly only, enemy is going to be various forms of skaven, the franchise’s signature race of rat things.
Warhammer: End Times Vermintide is currently set to release in the last half of this year on the PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.
My thoughts: This game sounds great. It’s kind of the last thing I expected, first that it’s a co-op FPS and second that it’s in the Warhammer fantasy setting, which doesn’t get a lot of attention. It was very wise of them to choose the skaven for this game. I think any other race I know of in the Warhammer franchises would have made this game feel like a totally generic bummer of an announcement, but rats? I can’t say I’ve ever played that before. It’s no Space Marine 2, but this is definitely something to keep my eye on.
You might remember that great-looking PlayStation 4 game the Threes! guy was making called Close Castles. I certainly do – I was psyched for it. But, as it turns out, some things are just not meant to be (for now), and development has been stalled.
Close Castles is currently on hold. I am working on a new mobile game now.
Underworld Ascendant, the successor to the highly influential RPGs Ultima Underworld I & II, is officially ready to be crowdfunded. Otherside Entertainment, founded by Paul Neurath, designer of the original Underworlds, not only aims to recapture the original Underworld but also to carry on the legacy of bringing innovation.
Much is made of Ascendant’s Improvisation Engine. How exactly it’s an ‘engine’ is unclear, but the game promises to engender real possibility when it comes to its problem solving. The Kickstarter page gives the example of simply wading into a river with a killer octopus in it, throwing bait downstream then crossing, or charming a spider to carry you across.
Stretch goals include co-op, a few special familiars, a level editor, and a very interesting “Doppelganger” system that allows you to summon AI versions of your friend’s character. When you’re done with it, your friend will be able to see a highlight reel and receive rewards.
My thoughts: The timing couldn’t be better for a new Underworld game, what with all the new “real” RPGs popping up left and right and tickling your nostalgia glands. I like the idea of continuing the legacy of innovation in the role-playing genre, and I’m excited to see Underworld possibly become a force again (even though I was barely around to see it in the first place).
Playing Peggle 2 is a bit like listening to modern Maroon 5. Early Maroon 5 is something no one should be ashamed to admit they like. It’s great music. The same goes for the original Peggle, a humble little game with just the right amount of everything it’s possible to have too much of. It was just the right balance of challenging and relaxing, its humor didn’t come off as shitty video game humor and was instead merely charming, and it didn’t feel like a million dollars was poured into it.
Clearing levels in Peggle 2, however, is the equivalent of hearing Adam Levine’s vocals whine over Maroon 5’s latest electropop turd – it’s catchy, it works, but it leaves me wondering “Where’s the funk?”. Continue reading A Bit Of Opinion: Peggle 2→
An open beta event for the upcoming Battlefield: Hardline will be popping off February 3 through February 8 on every console known to man (these are the PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and PC). But where is the Xbox One, the all-in-one games and entertainment system from Microsoft, you might ask?Well, the press release assures us that the beta will include the Xbox One™, “the all-in-one games and entertainment system from Microsoft”, so don’t even worry about that, fellas.
The beta will encompass the entire multiplayer progression, three maps and three game modes. Hotwire, Conquest, and Heist matches will be available, as well as a “first look” at a mode called Hacker, even though one paragraph earlier the release stated three modes, so who knows to what capacity this will be in the beta.
My Thoughts: This open beta is very open indeed. Looks like I’m going to be playing my first Battlefield game ever on February 3…
After nearly a year of radio silence on Starbound’s stable branch, the long-awaited update has finally come. Rest assured, the developers are not lounging on a beach until the end of time with your Early Access money.
Instead, they’ve been adding new planet types, biomes and mini-biomes, a new race called Novakid for your Roland Deschain roleplay, and Outposts scattered through space to ease progression. They’ve also been working on over 150 microdungeons, tons of novelty items, staves as a weapon type, and much, much more.
You can see the full list here. With the purported final character wipe having happened a couple of weeks ago, this is very much enticing me to give Starbound another go. I liked it a lot when I first played it for 13 hours one day, but groaned at the thought of character wipes and found I really just didn’t want to deal with Early Access at all. It seems to be inching ever closer toward a final product though, and this update is close enough for me – especially with the end of character wipes.
I’ve heard people say time and time again that they want a Dragon’s Dogma sequel but… this is unexpected. The next Dragon’s Dogma game is a free-to-play co-op game.
Announced as Dragon’s Dogma Online, the game will comprise of your party of four, each controlled by either an AI or a human, traversing its new open world area, Lestaria.
It’s unclear to me at the moment how exactly its multiplayer works, whether it’s more of an MMO layout where players are seen out in the world and there are somewhat menial quests to do, or if it is going more the Warframe way with individual co-op missions launched from a menu. The open-world aspect seems to indicate the former, while a “Quick Match” feature and lobbies that can “support” 100 people seems to indicate the latter. Parties of four roaming an MMO world as a unit is pretty interesting to think about.
Dragon’s Dogma Online is said to be coming at some point in 2015 to PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PC.
My Take: I never got around to playing Dragon’s Dogma, and it’s something I’ve always been searching for time and the chance to play ever since it came out. I’ve played through its spectacular demo numerous times, and that alone has me very excited for this game. Combat as unique as Dragon’s Dogma’s seems to be is welcome in my book, in the age of action MMOs like Tera.
Fifteen dollars for a gorgeous, varied, and engaging platformer may not seem like anything special in 2015 (you can look at Steam for five minutes and find a few games that check at least two of those boxes), but few of them are the same sort of thing as Brothers: A Tale Of Two Sons. Brothers is more like a film than any platformer I’ve played, for better or for worse, and in more ways than one. It doesn’t seem to know what to do with its story ambitions however, and despite having an extremely solid footing when it comes to core gameplay, still reaches for that extra boost of narrative excellence that always evades its grasp.