You don’t get the show #25: The Copyright Troll

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Randy tells us about a new kind of Copyright Troll that has been targeting the YouTube pages of people displaying his game. We also cover how YouTube has become a bastion for people looking to report your channel for any reason. In our Clickbait segment, we discuss how Steam has been censoring Japanese adult games and J.A. s exposed to the wonderful world of Genital Jousting.

You don’t get the show #18: PETA vs Warhammer 40k


We got PETA going after Warhammer 40K for using fur on their figurines (never mind all the humans that were killed) and a game developer writing their own positive reviews on Steam. We also premiere our new clickbait segment because we know how much you guys love that.

You don’t get the show #13: Infinite Failure


We start the show discussing inappropriate place you might decide to do some gaming like a wedding or a funeral or the bathroom which people seem to think is just great.

Then we dive into our main story, the Epic fail of Call of Duty Infinite Warfare with its PC port splitting its playerbase between Steam gamers and those who purchased the game from the Microsoft Store leading to lackluster player numbers on both platforms.

Finally, with one day before the 2016 election we call for gamers to get out and vote.

You don’t get the show #9: Lawsuits, Fake Kidnapping & a Dog Hadoken!


Do we as the gaming public, the customers, the people have the right to complain, critique and criticize games? The answer of course is yes, but how far can you go and what happens when a video game company (Digital Homicide) tries to retaliate with lawsuits? We bring all sorts of topics into this one from Colin Kaepernick to our experience with fans displeasure towards a game developer we previously interviewed.

Speaking of freedom, we head to Russia where a guy was arrested for playing Pokemon Go in church and faces up to 5 years in jail. Not only did this guy video tape it and post it, but word is he didn’t have kind words for the church as either. We wonder what kind of Pokemon you can catch in prison.

After that we needed some fun and being lifelong Street fighter fans we were amazed to find a video of a dog that could shoot a hadoken. I mean some people teach their dogs how to sit and roll over, but that’s for normal people, this is what a gamer would do.

Finally, since Obsolete Gamer is Miami based we started a new show feature that showcases stories highlighting the stupidity that comes out of Florida. This story features a fake kidnapping to test a boyfriend’s loyalty, what could go wrong?

Check out more from You don’t get the show here.

You don’t get the show #3: Let me tell you about being a crackhead


The summer Steam sale has taken over and while some of us have plenty of money to spend on the games we want the rest of us need to sacrifice and that is where we are here to help. J.A.  and Ignacio help you out with ways you can save and pro tips you can use to get the games you desperately need.

We also discuss a troll that got bitch slapped by a Blizzard employee on their own forums they cried about being banned for no reason and claimed Blizzard didn’t read the chat logs. Well they do and the Blizzard employee proved it by posted them and laying the smackdown on the troll. Speaking of smackdown, we give a little bit of a smackdown to Game Rant for claiming it was a Overwatch article when it was clearly a Heroes of the Storm article. Can we say clickbait?

Finally, we give props to another modder who created a playable Doom 2 level of Jerry’s apartment from Seinfeld complete with characters that you can kill. Doug Keener put in over 100 hours of work into this and its pretty awesome. Check out the full video on his YouTube page.

Doom 2 – Seinfeld: Jerry’s Apartment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Aa2K_firtI

Siege Breaker Sessions #4: Terrible Gamer Gifts

gamer tree

Tis the Holiday season and were talking about some of the worst gifts we have received and what it took to pretend they didn’t suck. We began the show considering an intervention for our friend Arkion who has a serious addiction to buying skins in League of Legends.

After discussing our worst X-mas gifts we talked Star Wars and where you can find that girl or guy that loves Star Wars and is dateable with a top five list. DayZ made the discussion topic as they announced you can now monetize your private server which led into our conversation about Valve reporting that over 77,000 Steam accounts get hacked per month.

Finally we ended with our top ten list of excuses for losing in a video game and were surprise about where some of the excuses ranked up.

So give us a listen here or download the podcast for free from our multiple sites and listen later, but let us know what you think.

Warning: The Siege Breakers Sessions Podcast is NSFW and and contains adult language, seriously if you get easily offended stay out.

You can find our podcasts at the following locations:

ITunes

Stitcher

iPodder

Player FM

Digital Podcast

Pod Directory

Siege Breakers Sessions #2: Black Friday Madness

steam-black-friday

The Siege Breakers Sessions podcast returns post-Thanksgiving with our round up of what the gang did during our holiday including all the Black Friday purchases we made from all the choices from Steam to Greenman Gaming.

We got derailed for a moment as J.A. was asked to talk about some of the horrible tech support experiences he had during his time working in phone support.

From there we moved into more League of Legend talk were the discussion quickly turned to the need or lack of need for a surrender button and that far too many games have been turned around after someone has called for the team to give up.

The EA hate returned in some form as J.A. admitted to purchasing the premium edition of Battlefield 4 during Black Friday while Magnolia has sword off all EA purchases even the next Mass Effect to Mighty D’s surprise.

Guild Wars 2 make a topic appearance due to Mighty D’s mentioning missing out on the beginning of World of Warcraft.

Finally Magnolia filled us in on the changes we can expect with DirectX 12 and how we will get better performance from out CPU’s which will mean better gameplay and longevity for newer and older systems using the Windows 10 platform.

Warning: The Siege Breakers Sessions Podcast is NSFW and and contains adult language, seriously if you get easily offended stay out.

You can find our podcasts at the following locations:

ITunes

Stitcher

iPodder

Player FM

Digital Podcast

Pod Directory

The Obsolete Gamer Show: Actifail, The Game Awards Nominees

What do you do when 95% of your staff is playing Fallout 4 and not working on show prep and booking guests? You focus on your roots and talk gaming, gaming, and gaming.

First up we discussed a few little things Activision could have purchased with the 5.9 Billion dollars they spent on Candy Crush such as LucasFilms or Marvel for example.

Next up we received the nominees for the 2015 Game Awards and discussed each of the prime categories. The Game Awards will take place live on December 3, 2015 at the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles and will be streamed simultaneously on gaming screens globally via a range of partners, including go90, YouTube, Twitch, Steam, PlayStation Network, Xbox Live and TheGameAwards.com.

Now the nominees were pretty console and Triple A heavy as well with big names such as Bloodborne, Fallout 4, Metal Gear Solid V, Super Mario Maker, The Witcher 3 and Halo 5, but there were also some Indie games like, Ori and the Blind Forest, Her Story and Rocket League. However we felt there was a lot missing, but what can you do, it is the way of many gaming award shows.

Finally we talked some StarCraft 2, Legacy of the Void and got a non-spoiler review and opinion on the final campaign of the series from our friend and hardworking OG member Magnolia.

All in all a good show, very game heavy with lots of game footage from the nominees so check it out and as always let us know what you think.

Beyond the Game Trailer: Enola – Nightmare

We delve into the world of the physiological thriller as we take a look at the update for the indie game, Enola from, The Domaginarium. Before we premiered the trailer we got a chance to talk with creative director, Sergio Rosa about the game as well about one of all-time favorite horror games, Silent Hill.

About Enola:

Enola is a psychological horror/adventure game that delves into the inherent darkness of love, death and revenge. As Enola, you must survive a macabre world conjured up by the tortured memories of her love, Angelica.

Visit: Obsolete Gamer

Devolved and Published by: Domaginarium

Check it out on Steam: Here

 

Profiled: Ichiro Lambe

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Name: Ichiro Lambe 

Company: Dejobaan Games 

Title: Lead Studio Head

Elegy for a Dead World

We talked with Ichiro Lambe from Dejobaan Games their incredible game, Elegy for a Dead World where you explore dead civilizations, write about what you find, and share your stories with the world. You can find the game on Steam.

Ichiro started gaming at an earlier age and like host, J.A. Laraque even had a Texas Instruments TI 99/4A. We talked about his gaming background and his journey from gamer to game maker. So check out his episode and let us know what you think.

War of the Roses

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War of the Roses 

War of the Roses is an interesting title, because it takes a few chances that generally pay off, makes use of perhaps one of the most popular gaming modes on the market right now, and feels like a game with some as of yet untapped potential.  So what is War of the Roses?  It is an online experience that feels to me like a Battlefield or Call of Duty game, but with swords and bows instead of rifles and machine guns.

War of the Roses-PC

Graphics – 6:

The visuals are not particularly striking.  They do the job, and there are some nice pieces of flair here and there, like seeing your coat of arms show up on your shield for example.  One of my complaints is that the video controls lack granularity in the settings.  My PC ran the game fine, but my laptop was much more of a struggle at more moderate settings, so I had to move the game’s video settings to the most basic. There were areas I would have liked to have tweaked upward, trying to find that sweet spot between appearance and performance, but those controls were not there.  One very positive note however, is that the game ran smoothly for me, even when crowds of fifteen to twenty people were onscreen together in the same general vicinity.

Sound & Music – 6:

Again, nothing here that particularly impressed me but at least the audio did nothing to offend me either.  A few of the songs in the sound track were pleasant enough to bump this up from a five to a six and make this a very slightly above average offering, but none of the tunes really struck me as memorable either. Weapons clank off of shields with a satisfying thud and cries of pain are a constant on the field of war.

Gameplay – 8:

I am among that minority that prefers to play my shooters with a controller over a keyboard and mouse.  In truth the only games I prefer keyboard and mouse on are strategy or sim/builder titles.  This game unfortunately does not have controller support, so what you get is an interesting if sometimes inelegant control scheme using the mouse and keyboard combination.  Movement by keys is what you would expect, but combat is handled in interesting fashion.

War of the Roses-PC
For those using a bow and arrow as their weapon of choice, you click one mouse button to draw back the bowstring and you have to manage a few things at once.  You have to aim your shot – while taking into consideration that the arrow will lose height as it travels any considerable distance.  You have to pull back the string, and hope to release by clicking the other mouse button while trying to time it for a ‘sweet spot’ release where the weapon will do maximum damage.  Hold the string back too long, and you will tire and lower your weapon.

War of the Roses-PC

Crossbow is similar in that it is a ranged weapon, but where longbow is rapid aim and release, the crossbow takes time to load each bolt.  When you first spawn using this weapon, I always load a bolt right away and then go looking for trouble.  It definitely packs a bigger punch, but if you have any melee opponents nearby, you will probably have to switch off to your secondary short sword because you will not have time to safely load another bolt.

War of the Roses-PC

Melee combat also makes use of both mouse buttons as one activates block and one swings a weapon.  Melee comes in a couple of different flavors as you can use larger, two-handed weapons that can be used to block, but have a narrow window for being successful.  On the other hand, that heavier weapon can make for some longer reached and more impactful blows when they connect.  Sword and board gives you better defensive options as you have a shield you can raise – particularly useful if you are trying to close in on an archer – but a lighter, quicker weapon in your main hand.

War of the Roses-PC

Swinging a weapon though, can be a slightly awkward affair.  You press the mouse button to swing and then swipe your mouse to swing your weapon in that direction.  It works well enough when you get used to it, and these combat mechanics are touched on in the tutorial.  That said, I think that this could have been handled in interesting fashion with say, a second analog stick on a game controller as well.

Armor is certainly a factor.  Better, heavier armor generally means you stay alive longer in the scrums.  Some helmets have a visor you can drop down over your face, limiting your field of vision but better protecting you as well.  A nice touch, really.

Intangibles – 8:

So here is where I get back to my initial paragraph a bit.  This game is really only an online multiplayer game with two modes: deathmatch and take the checkpoint.  Some people joke about how Battlefield or Call of Duty should not even bother with a single player mode since they are usually short and the majority of the fans spend the bulk of their time in the multiplayer modes.  Well, Paradox took that to heart in their design here because the only offline mode is a training mode that I found more frustrating than helpful.  There is very little hand-holding going on either in training mode or in the actual game.  Players who have played War of the Roses longer have more levels and more money and therefore better toys than newcomers.  That being said, Death does not discriminate much here – everyone dies quite a bit, though there are certain classes and configurations that do seem more successful than others (horseback and heavy armor are very nice).

War of the Roses-PC

The maps are well made, and with as many as 32 players possible on either team, you can find yourself participating in some very interesting skirmishes.  You have opportunities to aid fallen comrades or to execute wounded enemies.  Both are boons in that you gain experience and the executions can be particularly visceral – from either side of the equation.  These do present some risk versus reward propositions though as you leave yourself vulnerable to an enemy sword or arrow as well.

War of the Roses-PC

So with only one component: online – and only two modes, why give the intangibles such a high score?  A couple of reasons.  One, I simply enjoyed the game.  I had some rough initial impressions.  The tutorial annoyed me, I could not really configure my video the way and wanted and the bells and whistles failed to impress.  I found myself greatly enjoying the game as I waded into combat, fighting side-by-side with my teammates.  Even better was the post-match content, however.

War of the Roses-PC

As you gain experience, and levels – you unlock new classes.  The first four are built in advance, but the next few are fully customizable.  As you dive into those customization options, you can unlock various perks, weapons and pieces of armor for the coins you earned playing the game.  Want to use a polearm as your primary weapon?  Go for it – you will have several to choose from.  Want to play an archer?  Unlock the class, pick your type of bow and then feel free to purchase the perk that lets you hold the string longer.  This part of the game is surprisingly deep and enjoyable.

Overall 7:

I mentioned potential in my introduction, and it is here.  There has been talk that the developers will be adding new contact in the near future, and promise that it will be significant.  I have not yet seen what that will entail – more maps?  more online and potentially objective-based modes?  Perhaps more unlockable items or crest customizations?  That part is unclear at this point.  This game probably will not be for everyone with its essentially lacking storyline and limited number of modes, but for those who enjoy some multiplayer carnage, you can do a lot worse than a title like this that focuses only on that aspect of the gameplay while adding a medieval flavor to the proceedings.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

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Nothing like dangling a storm trooper over the edge of cliff using force grip or throwing him halfway across the map! ~James Hare

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

[infobox color=”blue”]Released: Sep 2003 (PC) Developer: Raven Software Publisher: LucasArts & Activision Genre: 1st/3rd Person Action Shooter [/infobox]

Decided to dust off Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy and see who still played it online, I was surprised to see quite a few people still do so I thought why not play through from start to finish. By the time I gotten to my favorite part of the game (choosing between the light path and the dark path) I realized I’d never actually completed the ‘light path’ version of the storyline. All done but I still prefer the dark side ending.

Either way I realized how well this game has lasted for its age, the game play is still as fun and exciting and the lightsaber combat second to none. I’m still in awe of the amount of customization you were able to do (back in the day of course) on your character in a game that is a first/third-person shooter and not an RPG. It was developed by Raven Software and published, distributed and marketed by LucasArts in North America and by Activision in the rest of the world.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

You play as Jaden Korr, (a character you can customize to be male/female, human, twi’lek etc) a padawan who is travelling to Luke Skywalker’s Jedi academy on Yavin IV, along with other new Jedi hopefuls. Kyle Katarn, (the reluctant Jedi you played as in Jedi Outcast) returns as a mentor at the Academy and becomes your master. However your ship is attacked and crashes into the planet, leaving Jaden and one other student, Rosh Penin, to make their way to the academy on foot.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

 

Story

The storyline revolves around solving several questions related to this attack at the start of the game. From here you take on several missions, mostly with Kyle to begin with to find these answers and soon discover that a dark jedi called Tavion (Dessans apprentice in Jedi Outcast) is behind the attacks. Tavion is attempting to resurrect the spirit of dark sith lord Marka Ragnos by using his sceptre to drain dark force energy from locations across the galaxy. On each subsequent mission after the training you set about finding out more about the cult, battling with dark Jedi, the remnant and a few bounty hunters along the way.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

The options of customizing your character does not end at physical appearance, you are able to specialize and train in a selection of different force abilities, light and dark. You start out with eight core force powers; pull, push etc which are automatically upgraded every time you return to the academy after missions. There are also eight advanced force powers to choose from (4 on the light side and 4 on the dark) the light side abilities are; absorb, protection, heal, and mind trick. The dark side powers include life drain, force lightning, force grip, and rage. You receive a point when you complete a mission (each power has three levels of improvement) and you can distribute it in any of these eight powers at the start of the next mission.

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

Personally force grip and heal are the powers of choice to get up to maximum level, and whether you choose the light or dark path nearer the end of the game (each with its own ending) you can have as many of the dark side powers as you like. Nothing like dangling a storm trooper over the edge of cliff using force grip or throwing him halfway across the map!

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

Jedi Academy captures the excitement of lightsaber combat perfectly and not to far into the game allows the player to select between single, dual or a staff lightsaber. The problem with Jedi Outcast was the amount of tedious levels you had to play before you got your lightsaber, in this game you have it from the start and can customize it to your liking. I tend to favor dual lightsabers in green and purple, I have no idea why. After completing the single player I was actually surprised when I logged into multiplayer to find servers still running and being played online.

Usually by now they’ve been taken over by bots and the odd nostalgic gamer but these were very full and active. Good times. The game itself is relatively easy to complete (mainly due to the lack of good AI in the enemy) and even has the option of avoiding harder missions if you choose too. Some of the better levels involve locations or characters from the movies. The Hoth mission is particularly good and the fight with Bobba Fett is awesome (although I feel they could have done more with this level).

Star-Wars-Jedi-Knight-Jedi-Academy

Jedi Academy is a great game and still worth revisiting. It is still highly playable in single and multiplayer mode and has plenty to offer in the way of character customization and mission/weapon selection. I love the choice of the light or dark path nearer the end of the game as it actually evokes real emotions in the player and for the situation the characters are in.

All I can say is the dark side path isn’t easier by a long way. The sound effects, music and voice acting really add a great atmosphere to the game and an extra dimension to the characters. Jeff Bennett returns to voice Kyle Katarn and Jennifer Hale and Philip Tanzini provide the female and male voices of Jaden Korr, with some great supporting voice artists Bob Bergen, Kath Soucie and Cam Clarke.

[You can find Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy on Stream]

Containment: The Zombie Puzzler

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Containment: The Zombie Puzzler

Do you like games wtih zombies?  Do you like puzzle games?  What if there was a game that put those two things together?  There is.  Learn more about Containment A Zombie Puzzler in this review.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

I recently acquired Containment A Zombie Puzzler through Indie Royale’s May Hurray Bundle.  Having heard of the game from a number of friends who are game developers as well as hearing about the game being selected for PAX 10 this year and seeing as a part of the bundle, I decided to get it.  Fast forward to July and I finally got around to playing it.

Unlike a lot of zombie games, this is not a shooter.  This is not a see how long you can survive.  This is not a run for your life, you’re going to be eaten by zombies, nor is it close to Plants vs. Zombies.  It’s a true puzzle game WITH zombies and boss zombies you have to fight.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

The game has two play modes:  Campaign and Survival mode.

In Campaign mode, you play through three acts which tells a story of how the zombie apocalypse started, what people are doing to survive.  The story is actually pretty entertaining and leads into new puzzles as you go on through the story.  Each act has 5 parts.  Depending on how good you are at puzzles and how fast you are at moving people around in the game will tell you how long it will take you to complete it.  The campaign will take at least 2 to 3 hours to complete.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

In Survival mode, you have to complete puzzles quickly.  You get rated on how many zombies are killed, time it takes to complete and how many survivors you have.  There are 3 different survival modes and you can rank up against other s in the game Leaderboard depending on how well you do.

Both versions are a lot of fun to play, but I have to say that Campaign mode gets harder and harder with new zombies and new bosses to defeat at each stage and Survival mode gets harder the further you get into the game.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

Did I mention that the zombies can turn your puzzle pieces into zombies?  I think I forgot to mention that.

I mentioned this was a puzzle game.  You get 4 types of non-zombies:  The Soccer Mom (as I call her) dressed in Pink, Army Dude dressed in Green. Police Officer in Blue and Anarchist in Orange.  To defeat the zombies, you have to surround on four sides (corners do not apply) with the same color.  You can surround groups of zombies.  Zombies on the edges only have to have 2 sides (sometimes three sides) before they are killed.  The colors vary each time for the fighters.  As you use them, they disappear and more fill in from the top.  Continue matching colors as you can until you defeat all the zombies.  But you have to do it quickly, otherwise the zombies will keep eating your defenders and you will run out of defenders and lose the round.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

You get bonus points for various events in the game, such as if you trap zombies or have a cascade effect. A cascade effect is where defenders drop down into a region and can automatically surround and kill a zombie already there.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

A nice feature of the game is you can restart individual blocks in an act, or the entire level.  It’s up to you.  If you fail, you get to chose where to restart as well.

Overall, as a puzzle game, this was pretty fun, especially as it tells a story.  In addition to putting puzzles together, you get bonus items to use (grenades, firebombs, airplane attack, etc.) but you also kill your people with those attacks.  There are also areas where you can interact with the environment to blow pieces of it up.

Containment - The Zombie Puzzler

There are also additional mini puzzles in the game.  For example, in one act, you need to surround several power supplies with defenders of the same color.  While defeating zombies and preventing zombies from walking into the group and turning them.   This game definitely makes you think.

The only downside of the game is the freaky repetitive noises.  The sounds get quite annoying after a while.

If you like puzzle games and zombies, this is a great game to add to your collection.  This is available on PC through Steam, as well as for iPads and other iDevices through ITunes.

For more information on Containment or on the development company, BootSnake Games, you can visit the following websites:

Game Rating: 4/5

You can also check out this video by bootsnake games  to see some gameplay:

John Getty: Exato Game Studios

exato game studios logo

Name: John Getty

Company: Exato Game Studios

Profession: Executive Producer & Lead Game Designer

Favorite Classic Game: Final Fantasy Tactics

Quote: “It’s all about the game.” – Ernie Calhoun, Video Game High School

Bio: As an entrepreneur and gamer by nature, I always wanted to create video games. It started very early in middle school as I modded games like Starcraft and Command and Conquer: Red Alert, then dabbled a little in RPG Maker and flash. When I got to college, I met a good friend who shared a similar interest and with very little deliberation (we were both very excited), we started Exato Game Studios.

guncraft

Project: Guncraft

Project Info: Guncraft is a voxel-based first person shooter that boasts fully destructible environments, the ability to construct individual blocks or full structures in a single click, tons of killstreak rewards such as helicopters, tanks, jetpacks, bunker buster missiles, drones, and turrets, and a fully featured map creation tool that also features a voxel map importing function (using the Substrate C# engine). Play traditional modes like Deathmatch and CTF, or totally unique modes like Lava Survival, Siege Mode, and the coop-enabled Onslaught Mode. On top of that, there are standalone servers, peer hosted servers, clan support and friends lists, in and out of game chat, leaderboards, and much, much more.

Impact: Gaming Communities

raptr

This week on OGS we talked with Casey Scheld from Raptr about how that community has grown over the past few years into successful gaming community where gamers can read reviews, share achievements, earn all types of goodies and just hang out and have fun. There have been a ton of gaming communities that have brought gamers together like Dwango, HEAT, Kali, Gamespy and Steam. On the panel, we discuss the impact these communities has had on gaming culture and the marriage of social media and gaming.

So check it out and let us know what you think and remember, you can download our podcasts on ITunes and now we are available on Stitcher Radio.

Steam Halloween Sale

You really don’t need a reason to buy video games, especially on Steam when they have an awesome sale. This week you can find a number of awesome games on Stream that have a Halloween flavor to it which is why it is for sale.

 steam halloween sale

Check out the full list here, but I cheery picked a few to comment on:

Dead Island

dead island

You know what this game and Halloween had in common? This game was like going up to a really awesome looking home fully decorated with the best Halloween swag and you are given mini bibles instead of candy. Yes, the game blows that much, but for half off I guess it’s worth checking out for yourself.

Alan Wake

Alan Wake

Hey, the only thing scary about this game was the original price and the fact that the game seemed designed to get you to buy a ton of DLC. Okay, the game wasn’t horrible, but honestly it should have always been priced under 20 and at $14.99 it is worth a pick up.

Left 4 Dead 2

left-4-dead-2

While many may have moved on to newer games L4D2 is one of those games you should have in your collection. At only 4.99 you want to keep it just so you can log on and play some multiplayer and if you have never played it this a great time. Awesome game.

Dead Rising 2

dead-rising-2

Not as bad as Dead Island, but this was a letdown as well. The story has you mixing and combining items to use against hordes of zombies as you try to save your daughter. This kind of reminded me of a mix between The Running Man and Zombieland which sounds awesome until you start playing it, but hey for $7.49 it’s worth a look at.

BioShock 2

bioshock2

I get the feeling this was just thrown in there to elevate the lessor games. If you have not played BioShock 2 then get on it because you are seriously behind the curve. This is a fun game with a mix of action, mystery and excitement and you get to syphon mystic powers from children. For only 4.99 it would be criminal not to get this game.

Rage

rage

You know what got me raging about this game, that it felt like a cheap mix of Boarderlands and Fallout and did not get either right. I know some people liked it and so for 9.99 I guess you can see for yourself, but like Alan Wake, Rage should have been priced like this from day one.

So much more

There are a ton of other great games from 25 to 75 percent off so start blowing your Black Friday money today. The sale ends November 1st so unlike early voting you do not want to miss this.

We Interview Chris Avellone From Obsidian Entertainment: Part 2

Chris Avellone metal

 Chris Avellone From Obsidian Entertainment

Be sure to read Part 1 here!

General Questions About Gaming And Game Design:

What do you think about games that are based around an alignment based system? Are they too limited? How would you enforce the alignment role-playing aspect?

I don’t always believe in a game imposing morality unless it’s part of a franchise (Star Wars). In Alpha Protocol we did away with a player morality bar because in the espionage world, it’s difficult to say whether you’re “good” or “bad,” you’re just out to accomplish your mission and your reasons are your own. I do feel it’s fair if you set up reputation bars for other people, companions, and factions because it’s easier to imagine how NPCs and communities would judge your actions that us trying to judge the player and slap a +/- on it.

I did dislike the alignment system in D&D because it always assumed the player should choose an alignment before adventuring in the world. So in Torment, we let the player be a blank slate and let the alignment evolve (and reverse) over time depending on your actions. We felt that this was a better interpretation of the alignment system and it made more sense in the context of the narrative.

What do you think about the trend that we see in modern gaming where people consider MMORPGs to be RPGs? Is this correct or have they simply not had then chance to play a real traditional RPG?

Advancement schemes are similar, and some of the cause and effect you experience in RPGs is there, and I’d argue the ability to form your own party from other players provides the equivalent of an RPG experience in many respects. You may not always be able to make your decisions and actions felt in the environment because you can’t disturb the MMORPG equilibrium to the same extent as you can in a single-player RPG, but some of the core elements are there, yes.

If you had to remake a classic RPG made by another studio, which one would you remake and why?

SSI Wizard’s Crown or Eternal Dagger because I loved the way they showcased the dungeons and allowed you to develop your character. Pool of Radiance would also be fun (the 1st Goldbox one) as would Dark Sun’s Shattered Lands (which I loved).

What is the most influential yet obscure game you have ever played and why do you find it so important in your gaming history?

Well, in terms of influential yet obscure, that cuts a lot of games out – I feel a lot of the more common games have had a big influence on my designs (Portal, Chronotrigger, Ultima Underworld). If I were to name some “obscure” ones, I’d probably say System Shock 2 is the top of the list (it’s basically a design doc for how to make a great game), Amnesia: The Dark Descent for introducing a challenge mechanism that could simultaneously terrify you, Bastion’s narration mechanics, and Wasteland for proving to me how you could use game mechanics in the context of a “conventional” RPG to make some truly brilliant levels if you took a step back and thought outside the box.

What was your favorite character from RPGs you have worked on and why?

That’s tough, and it varies. I liked most of the Torment cast for different reasons, even Ignus and Vhailor. If I had to choose one, it would probably be Fall-From-Grace, I always enjoyed the premise of a puritan succubus who’s simultaneously the nicest, wisest, and gentlest people you can meet on the Planes. Jennifer Hale did a great job with her voice.

Who is your favorite co-worker and why?

Brian Menze, our concept artist and the lead artist on South Park now. I’ve known Brian ever since the Black Isle days, and he’s been my friend for a very, very long time. We still try and do comic book Wednesdays every week, and the studio would be a sadder place without his presence. He’s brought a lot of characters in the studio to life, and he’s incredibly modest and humble about his pieces, which makes me like him all the more.

Who in computing or video game history has been your idol and why?

Tim Cain, Tom Hall, Richard Dansky, to name a few. Tim reimagined how RPG mechanics could work for me, Tom Hall reimagined how design aesthetics could be applied in unconventional ways (Anachronox), and Richard Dansky never stops being a great guy and helping people.

I couldn’t possibly name everyone, but those are the people that jump to mind. I have the good fortune to work with Tim Cain on this project, and that’s one of my life goals on my bucket list.

First Project Eternity Screenshot

What do you watch/play/listen-to/read while trying to get creative ideas for projects?

Mostly trance music. I can’t listen to anything with lyrics while writing a character, I find the words and inner speech of the character I’m writing gets all jumbled up.

Going to see a live show or play I’ve found is one of the best means to stir the creative pot up when I have writer’s block (or even if I don’t). I have a lot of friends in the theater or who play in bands, and watching them live is enthusiastically contagious.

Other times, I immerse myself in research. Often when tackling an area, concept, or type of game, I try to read as much literature and watch as much media relevant to it (example, for Fallout New Vegas: Lonesome Road, I re-read Damnation Alley again, watched The Road, etc, etc.). When I got back into Wasteland, I started listening to a lot more 80s music, watching 80s movies and even researching 80s commercials to get a feel for the era… I’m embarrassed to say my memories of the 80s have slipped away, so it’s a shock to remember some of the big moments and media of the decade.

Project Eternity Specific Questions:

I always loved the interaction between my party members in some of your previous games, especially in Planescape: Torment. I did not like how rare these interactions did happen though. Do you plan on implementing a more ongoing interaction between the party companions? Have you considered adding interactions that will only happen when you have certain companions in the party?

Yes and yes, we feel companion commentary with each other is a strong means of showing how alive and reactive your companions are – not just to the world and your actions, but to each other’s presence. Plus, they’re fun to write, I certainly enjoyed writing the ones in Torment and would have loved to have written more.

Are we going to be limited in party size? Yes, it would probably make the game a lot easier to be walking around with an army so what we are asking is, what would be the magic number and how can you logically limit the size? Have you considered implementing the hiring of mercenary NPCs?

Party size will be a single player character and up to five companions – or as you mentioned above with mercenaries, you can also round out your party with recruited allies (which you can customize and build in the Adventurer’s Hall).

How do you plan to sell the game once it is finished and live? Retail? Steam? Impulse? GOG?

GOG (DRM-free) and Steam are our digital distribution outlets. We are also going to see if we can work on distributing the boxed version at retail as well, but we have not specific plans on that yet.

Have you considered making certain parts of the game have a randomized value that would add to the replayability of the game? Have you considered randomizing major plot points or the true intentions of certain characters?

Right now, our efforts have been focused on the hand-crafted elements that will make up the spine of the game.

project eternity wallpaper

Will gear be generally usable by most characters or will it require a certain adjustment for use? By this I mean, can a mage wear at least some level of real armor. Also, a dwarf wouldn’t be able to wear a troll’s armor unless he had an armorer make a suit of armor from that troll’s armor. Do you plan to implement that kind of level of equipment realism in the game? Will gear have wear and tear? Will the game offer some level of crafting element?

We won’t restrict gear according to player race. If you find armor, any race can wear it.

Would somebody be able to simply play not caring what the game’s plot is trying to get us to do? What I mean is similar to what’s found in the game Mount & Blade, for which you can pick what you really want to do such as hire one-self out to work for the highest paying empire or faction.

Like an Infinity Engine title, there is a plot, and while we will have dungeons that respawn and events in the world that you can cause to happen through your actions (such as turning a town or city hostile), the game requires some interaction with the plot from the player to progress. That said, we do want the player to feel free in how they approach the plot and feel that they can make the choices they want to make.

Will you give players the option to dramatically change the world in the RPG such as by ending it or potentially creating utopia?

The story hasn’t been nailed down yet, we’re still crafting it. We do want the world to persist in some fashion after the first installment, and even if great changes occur in the first game, there’s still plenty of world to explore in future games.

Would we be able to have our character fall in love with other characters in the game? Do we get to choose this or what if the game chose for us? Would it be possible to start a family, such as in the Fable games or Europa 1400 The Guild?

There’ll be a variety of mature relationships in the game, and you can choose to interact with them as little or as much as you want.

How is time handled in the game? Will the game take the course of a year? Will it take many years with some of the effects from the earlier part of the game affecting the mid and end game?

We’re handling time in a similar fashion to the BG and IWD games. Events happen in more-or-less real-time (real game time, that is, not literally minute per real world minute) except for rest sequences. We probably won’t be advancing time artificially off screen (“Act 1 is over, so X years pass,” for example).

Will the game offer any kind of multiplayer, such as letting our friends take over our party members in combat?

We want to focus on the single-player experience and make sure that’s solid. We don’t have any multiplayer plans at this time.

Would you let players submit translated versions of the game in other languages that haven’t yet been scheduled for translation?

They would most likely be part of the translation efforts if they wanted to volunteer. We’d welcome the help, and we’ve already received a huge amount of support from international fans that would love to do the translations for us (and if you are one of them and you’re reading this –thanks again).

Do you plan on updating the game with expansions once the game is released? How often would this happen? Would players be able to make their own mods or expansions once the game is live and would an editor be made available eventually?

We would like to do this, although we’re still examining how the pipelines for expansions would work. We don’t want to promise something that we couldn’t do until we’d done more research. We recently released an update with our modding views – we like modding, we want to encourage it, but we don’t want to promise it unless we know we can do it, or else we’d do our players and backers a disservice.

Although I have asked about technology already, since this is such a game changer, I made it a separate question: Will this universe have guns or gunpowder?

It has both. Gunpowder weapons exist, though they are single-shot wheellock variety, and are primarily used to give mages an unprecedented run for their money.

Will all the major races be humanoids or will you implement at least one really weird non-humanoid races a major player in this world?

We’ve got a selection of races, both seemingly-traditional and ones that are more off the beaten path. Some of the concept pieces we’ve released (notably the female dwarf) should give some clues as to what to expect from the choices for race in the game.

What’s the major mode of transportation in this universe?

Foot travel is the primary mode of transportation, although occasionally players may find themselves magically transported somewhere. To speed up overland travel, we will implement a map UI so the player can quickly move their party to locations they’ve already discovered. Note that our map UI is similar to what’s been found in the Icewind Dale and Baldur’s Gate games, not Elder Scrolls or Fallout 3/New Vegas-style fast travel.

What kinds of religions will we see in the game?

This will fall on Josh Sawyer (our resident theologian). More to come on this as the world is fleshed out in future updates.

Deep Space Bundle: Pay What You Want for 8 Space Themed Games

deepspace-logo-backblack

In space no one can hear you bundle. In Deep Space, on the other hand, you can definitely enjoy eight excellent indie games for a pay-what-you-want price as the second bundle by Kyttaro Games , Bundle In A Box: Deep Space, was released today. It’s the only thematic bundle around, will last for 14 days and offer all games as DRM-free downloads (but not exclusively so; most games are also available on Desura and/or Steam ).

Bundle In A Box 

Bundle In A Box is a thematic pay-what-you-want gaming bundle, that helps new games debut, supports charity and directly strengthens creators via the Indie Dev Grant. As more people buy it the minimum price drops and extras get unlocked.

Game List

Space Giraffe

Space Giraffe

By Llamasoft

Jeff Minter’s Space Giraffe is an abstract action arcade style game that takes place in a succession of dizzyingly beautiful environments generated by advanced graphics synthesizers. It presents itself as a shooter, but the more you play the more you discover the hidden depths and strategies that make the gameplay satisfyingly rich and rewarding.

This is the boldest evolution of the trance-shooter, created by the company that helped to define the genre with the groundbreaking “Tempest 2000”. Expect 200 levels of trance-tastic action, beautiful abstract graphics that respond to audio input, two remixes of the same game, and deep gameplay that rewards strategic and tactical play. Space Giraffe is accessible enough to entertain a novice player, but also deep enough to satisfy the arcade expert.

Death Ray Manta

Death Ray Manta

By Rob Fearon

Death Ray Manta is an attempt at finding the videogame equivalent of the perfect 2 1/2 minute pop song. A flashing, glowing exploration of the history of arena shooters condensed into the now. It’s a game about finding and embracing the moment, celebrating everything videogame and being videogame. It’s also an arena shooter where you blow stuff up and flash lights in your face.

Because videogames.

Death Ray Manta is videogames.

Death Ray Manta also happens to be an arena shooter that knows its history. From Robotron to Llamatron to Geometry Wars and on, Death Ray Manta keeps one eye on what works, what’s worked and tries to explore it all. Quickly. In a condensed few moments of pleasure. What’s more, it is a videogame about flashing lights in your face.

Very, very, pretty lights.

The Wreckless

theWreckless

By Duct Tape Games

The Wreckless is a single player space combat simulator, with a sixteen level fully voiced campaign and a simulator that lets the player create their own custom skirmishes. The missions comprise a variety of different styles including bombing missions, dogfights against tough AI opponents and escort missions. The player can research different fighter crafts to use for each scenario, choosing different fighter/bomber combinations to compliment their own play style.

The gameplay is reminiscent of “old school” space combat games like “Tie Fighter” and “Elite” but uses modern WASD controls, some FPS conventions and does not require a joystick. Most levels are comprised of flying with a squadron of allied drones, dodging huge capital ships and stations. The Wreckless also allows players to customize the difficulty of each scenario by altering the number of crafts deployed.

Dark Scavenger

Dark Scavenger

By Psydra Games

Dark Scavenger is an adventure game that combines strategic turn-based combat with unique point-and-click mechanics. Happily, it features twisted dark humor and dozens of quirky characters.

Filling the role of a powerful space traveler, you find yourself stranded on a mysterious planet in the company of three eccentric, yet resourceful aliens. As you desperately seek a way to repair your ship, a massive conflict unfolds around you involving warring factions and a sinister force that threatens to destroy them all.

Will you adopt the problems of this world as your own or will you just save yourself?

Armalyte

Armalyte

By Psytronik

Armalyte, the stunning Commodore 64 shoot -’em-up, has at long last been converted to the PC  and is looking and sounding better than ever! Yes, the massive boss encounters and the 8 tough worlds are still there.

The PC version of Armalyte is based on the classic Commodore 64 game. The gameplay has been precisely replicated on the PC thanks to involvement from the original Armalyte developers Dan Phillips and Robin Levy. The graphics have been specially enhanced for the PC version by Trevor ‘Smila’ Storey and the game features brand new soundtracks by Chris ‘Infamous’ Bailey.

Sol: Exodus

Sol: Exodus

By Seamless Entertainment

Suit up and take on the role of the Lieutenant Commander, ace fighter pilot and 2nd in command of the UCS Atlas, as you search for a new home, battle a mysterious enemy, and rescue humanity from a fiery end in this visually stunning space shooter.

By the year 2500, Earth had become toxic and unsafe for human life. Pollution and overpopulation had ravaged the planet, forcing humanity to the stars. Colonies and settlements soon sprung up across the solar system, but mankind had not left its thirst for war behind. Then, they learned their sun was dying, and everything changed. Only when faced with a threat greater than each other did the nations of man finally come together. The United Colonies of SOL (UCS) was born, its first and only mission: to locate a new home for mankind, safely beyond the doomed borders of our solar system.

Miner Wars Arena

Miner Wars Arena

By Keen Software House

It is the year 2081. Our Solar System is in the aftermath of a total political breakdown. Humanity is fighting over scarce resources on asteroids. Take control of a mining spaceship, hack your way through asteroids, and crush your enemies in a fully destructible environment in this just released sci-fi gem.

Fast-paced arcade game inspired by the PC gaming classic, Tunneler, with state-of-the-art top-down 2.5D gameplay in a fully destructible environment. Enjoy unlimited gameplay variations by adjusting your arena settings, playing skirmishes, fighting at tournaments and even going for some split-screen multiplayer.

Robot Riot

Robot Riot

By Retromite

Bigger than a nanite! Smaller than a trash can! Feistier than a vengeful princess! Jump, puzzle and shoot through spaceships and their systems as vanguard robot ‘SLUG’. Raid vessels for your galactic debt collecting master in pristine pixel platformer perfection.

Robot Riot features 21 action packed levels, tons of enemy types, plenty of gun-turrets and epic bosses, exciting power-ups and weapon-upgrades, classic platform action with unique environmental hazards and a joyous retro style due to its 16bit era pixel art and chiptunes.

Armalyte Extras

Armalyte Extras

By Psytronik

The retro-tastique, interactive extras of the boxed Armalyte version are finally available in downloadable form. Grab them and complement your 8-bit retro remade experience!

This lovely collection includes Mix-e-Load, the JukeBox containing the game’s music in what can only be described as an impressive music demo and a brilliantly interactive Making Of on the Armalyte box art.

Support upcoming game developers.

$10 will be added to our Indie Dev Grant for every 100 sales and the whole sum will be awarded to a developer selected by vote; no strings will be attached as to how the grant will be used.

Donations to Charity

5% of all revenues will be shared with the Hellenic Centre for Mental Health and Treatment of Child and Family.

What’s more, for each 1000 bundles sold new extras will be unlocked for everyone, including the premier issue of the PlaySF sci-fi gaming magazine, the brand new Dark Scavenger soundtrack, the soundtracks of Sol: Exodus and Miner Wars, and an eclectic selection of books, artbooks and storyboards.

Bonus:

Droidcape: Basilica

As an added bonus, all who purchase the bundle will get access to exclusive content for Droidcape: Basilica; KyttaroGames’ own upcoming game for iOS and Android. The top 10 contributors will also get a free copy of the game itself upon release, whereas the Droidscape: Into the Basilica book will be made available as an unlockable extra.

 

Ten Indie Games that Should be on Steam

In its first day Greenlight, the cunning Steam scheme that lets mainstream gamers vote on indie games and saves Valve the trouble of promoting its service, has gathered over 500 submissions. It is of course quite the mess, though a mess that will ensure that only well-known games with built-in communities make it to Steam, thus bringing Valve even more money. Hoorah!
Or, well, not.
Anyway. I too did spend a few hours navigating the Greenlight entries and here are the 10 games I would like to see make it on the service. They are of course games I was already aware of, but that’s how things work, isn’t it?

The Sea Will Claim Everything

The Sea Will Claim Everything; it’s the only game that will make you a better person. Also, it looks and sounds wonderful and sports thousands of lovely words that are lovely.

Death Ray Manta

Death Ray Manta; it’s by Rob Fearon and it’s the most psychedelic, colourful, enjoyable and modifiable arena shooter we’ll ever play. Besides, DRM eh?

Dark Scavenger

Dark Scavenger; because everyone should love excellent, verbose adventure/RPG hybrids with a demented sense of humour.

Project Zomboid

Project Zomboid; yes, zombies can still be fun, interesting and actually innovative. Here is where I confess my love for the thing.

Neocolonialism

Neocolonialism; seems to have involved since I first covered it for the IndieGames Blog. BesidesSteam could easily use a couple more political games.

Wyv and Keep

Wyv and Keep; I do love co-op games played on one PC. Even more so when they are weird and pixel-artsy. Mind you, I did preview this particular game some time ago.

Cognition An Erica Reed Thriller

Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller; crafted with a little help from Jane Jensen AND using the power of post-cognition: the most useless sounding super-power of late, that does though make perfect sense from a gameplay point-of-view.

Fibrillation

Fibrillation; from Russia. With horror.

Call of Cthulhu The Wasted Land

Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land; WWI turn-based strategy and Cthulhu. Better yet, Call of Cthulhu of the Chaosium variety. Did review it some time ago.

Octodad Dadliest Catch

Octodad: Dadliest Catch; the trailer, the TRAILER.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03rP_O2k8XM[/youtube]

And if you feel I haven’t posted enough links, well, here’s another one. It will take you to myGreenlight Collection thingy, which, provided I don’t get bored, will generally include some pretty intriguing games.

Waveform

waveform banner
Waveform, the soothing indie game I previewed some time ago, is an elegant and incredibly simple to play offering that has just been released for the PC (with a little help from Steam), though I’m pretty sure it would make a killing over at them touch-based mobile devices. Now, don’t take this wrong reader; I don’t consider Waveform simplistic or shallow – far from it. I’m just pretty confident its unique game mechanics would greatly benefit from touch controls.
Anyway. On to the game proper. Waveform has you using the mouse to control the wavelength and amplitude of a light wave that looks and behaves suspiciously close to a sine wave. Moving your mouse cursor right or left will modify the former and up or down the latter, thus hopefully plotting a route that will help your circular avatar thingy avoid obstacles and grab a ton of points. It’s this simple really or, as some would wisely point out, a triumph of minimalist design.

waveform banner

 

Happily, said simplicity doesn’t mean that the game is boring. It means instead that this is one traditionally easy to learn yet hard to master offering. Also one that actually affords gradually building up its complexity with a steady introduction of new gameplay elements, new mechanics, new enemies and new ways to treating them, meaning that you will definitely have something fresh to look forward to every few levels. And there’s over 100 well designed of them.
Not all is perfect though. Especially as things get more hectic the controls can feel a tad unresponsive. Oh, and despite the variety on offer and even them hidden levels, said things can actually get repetitive, especially when you are frantically trying to play through the game for a review… Then again, and in what can only be considered a showcase of spontaneous dialects, it remains both fun and addictive; a bit like Tetris actually. What’s more, Waveform is indeed something one has to definitely try in order to experience an oddly relaxing yet essentially arcade game.
waveform banner

 

As for the game’s graphics, well, they are all spacey and slightly psychedelic and nice, and help that overall feel of a properly polished game. As, of course, does Waveform‘s amazing soundtrack. And the ton of little touches, black hole levels, achievements and extras that the devs have kindly packed in this rather lovely and bravely original game.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9K85eS0cxY[/youtube]
Verdict: A refreshing and actually successful attempt at a spectacularly innovative arcade game. Definitely worth a try, if only to experience how something truly new feels like.

Bundle In A Box: Adventure Bundle

Bundle in a box

Bundle in a box is a great concept that allows gamers to download a bundle of great independent games.  Obsolete Gamer’s own writer and contributor Konstantinos (a.k.a. gnome from Gnomes Lair & IndieGames.com, breaks down the bundle.

1893 A World’s Fair Mystery text-adventure

Bundle In A Box – Adventure Bundle has finally gone live and you can now grab 7 truly excellent adventure games for the price of your choice! Well, almost, as you’ll have to beat a low and constantly dropping minimum price and two of our more intriguing offerings are only available to those who pay above the average, but you get the idea.

Ben There, Dan That!

Besides, by buying our bundle you’ll be supporting both an important charity and the Indie Dev Grant.

On to the games then…

Gemini Rue

We will exclusively debut the whimsical The Sea Will Claim Everything by Jonas Kyratzes and offer six more games: Gemini Rue, Metal Dead, The Shivah, Ben There, Dan That!, Time Gentlemen, Please! and –for the first time ever – the downloadable version of 1893: A World’s Fair Mystery text-adventure (previously only available as a physical product). Yes, we are indeed hoping to further fuel the current Adventure Game Renaissance!

Metal Dead

All games will be available as DRM-free downloads and most of them will also be available via Steam and/or Desura.

The Sea Will Claim Everything

Extras such as the Gemini Rue soundtrack and the exclusive Metal Dead Making Of booklet will also be included.

The Shivah

Besides the seven adventure games and said extras, the bundle will support a charity that’s close to our hearts (The Hellenic Centre for Mental Health and Treatment of Child and Family) and launch the Indie Dev Grant, which we hope will actually help smaller indie devs.

Time Gentlemen, Please!

Bundle In A Box will be using the pay-what-you-want payment model with the twist of a constantly dropping minimum price; Metal Dead and The Shivah will only be available to anyone paying over the average price.

Square Enix Steam Sale

Almost nothing beats Steam sales and if you are a fan of Square Enix games this is the time for you. Right now you can save a ton of a bunch of Square games and DLC packs.

Here is the official press release:

sqaure-enix-stream-sale


Greetings,

From today until Monday March 26, new and existing Steam members can grab Square Enix back catalogue and recently released games at a fraction of the usual prices.

The promotion includes 50% off all Square Enix games and DLC packs throughout the sale period with a number of additional Daily Deals running throughout the promotion.  Kicking off the Daily Deals, and for one day only starting today there’s a tempting 75% off all previously released Hitman games.  Further details of each Daily Deal will be revealed on the day via Steam and Square Enix members.

In addition Square Enix is offering a Hit Collection game bundle comprising over 15 classic games including Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Tomb Raider: Legend, Just Cause 2, Thief: Deadly Shadows and Hitman: Blood Money, all for one low price.

http://store.steampowered.com/

http://member.square-enix.com/na/

Counter Strike: Global Offensive Official Trailer

Counter-Strike-Global-Offensive

Valve is bring back the Counter Strike of old in a brand new edition that will expand upon the team-based action gameplay that it pioneered when it was launched 12 years ago. CS: GO features new maps, characters, and weapons and delivers updated versions of the classic CS content (de_dust, etc.).

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ycbuZNRgZc[/youtube]

Here is the trailer of the upcoming; Counter Strike: Global Offensive

Will Valve’s New Game Be Free To Play?

 

Valve’s New Game Be Free To Play

Steam, the online game distributor, has recently embraced the free to play phenomenon gaining popularity in North America and is now offering this genre an outlet. With games like Champions Online, Spiral Knights, and Global Agenda all feeling resurgence in their populations from this new spotlight its only natural for Valve to try their hand at the F2P model.

Why not test out this success on something deep-rooted but admired? Steam has already taken one of their most popular games, Team Fortress 2, and given it a free to play make over. Has their been any success in this move? Apparently so, since it is rumored that Valve is going to make a F2P game, but what future feature project could they be thinking of making F2P?

Could it be Defense of the Ancients 2? By all logical means, it sounds like this would be the most likely model for success for DotA2. Why? Because its main contender is none other than League of Legends, a game that has garnered international popularity with its free to play model, microtransaction payment method, and E-sport fame.

If Valve intends to yank players away from a game that requires no down payment or box sales this seems like the most likely means to be able to strive in the DotA Clone market against such a heavy hitter such as LoL. If they manage to make DotA 2 an entity of its own while keeping to the core concepts of the original it could possibly dethrone or spar head to head against its competitor. Good luck with that feat, Valve.

The Alienware M11x r2 Review

Alienware M11x r2

Let me start by saying this review is more for the casual gamer meaning it will not be filled with charts and graphs and a ton of numbers that most would not understand. There are a ton of super technical reviews on the Alienware M11x r2 that provide every benchmark number and rating score you will ever need, this, is for the rest of us.

Why purchase a gaming laptop?

For the causal gamer one might wonder why you need a gaming laptop. My answer would be that you don’t, but the great thing about gaming laptops is they have the power for everything else you would need to do so why not have the ability to play games as well?

Far too often, we as computer shoppers select a low cost laptop to save money knowing we want one that we will not have to replace within a year and one we secretly wish we could play games on. Perhaps paying $1500 plus for a gaming laptop would not be for us, but at $1000 you are not too far away from laptops you find even on sites like Tech Bargains.

If you know you like to game and especially if you like MMO’s then having the ability to pull out a gaming laptop and play those games anywhere is well worth the price.

Alienware M11x r2

Price

Most reviews do not start with the price, but this is not like most reviews. The M11x can be purchased starting at $1000 on the Alienware website. At the price you can get more than enough to run most of the games a causal gamer would playing including FPS, RTS and MMO games.

The Outside

Do looks matter? Sure, they do just ask Apple, the Alienware M11x does look sleek, like a stealth bomber. The all black styling of the laptop goes well with almost any décor and let’s face it, it looks good either at home or out in public. I have had a number of people comment on the system specifically the neon-like light coming from all over it.

Speaking of lighting there are several zones of the computer that light up from the keyboard to the grills on the front and the little Alienware heads. The great this is using a program built in called Alienware FX, you can change all the colors to what suits you and you can even mix and match them for a funky clown look if you wish.

Outside Details

Let us go into some specifics about the outside. First off, the laptop weights about 4.4 pounds and while that may seem heavy to some in the day of the iPad it is still pretty light. There are three USB 2.0 ports, to connect things like mice, a HDMI and Display Port to connect a monitor, FireWire and a headphone jack for audio privacy. There is also a place for a special Kensington lock, which you buy separately so you can lock your laptop to a desk or somewhere else it cannot be stolen from.

Alienware M11x r2

The Inside

As said, there can be debates on which processor works best with this program or that game, but for the purpose of this review we will keep it simple. For the$1000 version of the M11x you get the Intel Core i5 1.4GHz processor. From what I have found using it, it does the job for the games I play and the programs I use, but I will go into that shortly.

Next you have the memory which at that price you receive 4GB’s. If you really get into gaming big time and you want the newest game on the highest setting then people will tell you to go with an 8GB or higher system. I personally do not have that on my desktop and do fine and with 4GB you have more than enough RAM for most any task you will be doing gaming or otherwise.

As for hard drive space, that decision is made based on how much you store and install. At the $1000 price, you get 320GB’s, which is a lot of space. Considering you have a desktop at home, you most likely do not need all this space.  Even if you do not and the laptop is your sole computer, unless you install every game and have a music and video collection out of this world then you should be fine. However, Alienware offers more hard drive options that offer more space.

Video is of course very important not only because of games, but everything visual on your system. Here it can get tricky because there are desktops and even some laptops that offer dual video cards in SLI and all kinds of options. The video card on the $1000 system is the NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M and I have found it works great for the games I play and for watching video in high def.

The rest

There are other things of note that come with the M11x like its wireless network card, which is necessary for gaming on the go. The system also has a standard network port to plug it in at home, the office, and school or where have you. The operating system is Windows 7 home premium 64-bit, which I have used on my desktop for quite some time. I personally think this is the third best O/S behind Win 95 SE and Win XP, so you should not have any trouble here.

Alienware M11x r2

Usage

This is what matters, but it is also, where it depends on what you do. First off, let us talk battery life, with the 8-cell battery under normal usage I have found you get a little over 5 hours of battery life, but if you are playing games, it will be less than that.

As for gaming itself, I tried the Alienware M11x in the game World of Warcraft in its native resolution of 1366×768 and was able to run the game with full graphical features with no issues even in heavy populated zones. Perhaps the key is the smaller screen, which is 11.6 inches, which can seem small when you have a user interface with a ton of icons, but I found I was able to get used to it.

In a game like Everquest 2 that uses more CPU power, I also received good frame rates even in open zones. Now I was not able to max everything out in EQ2 specially the shadows, but I was able to crank up the texture models and general graphics to make the game look great and playable even in a raid.

Other games I have played include Fallout 3, which ran fine, a number of Steam games and emulators since I am a classic gamer. I also played StarCraft 2, which ran fine. I also run various programs like Ventrilo for communication and Digsby, which is an all in one instant messaging client. I also run Firefox with four or more windows open at the same time to check websites and information, all while playing a game usually in windowed mode.

As for sound, it sounds much better than your normal laptop, but we have to be honest that even though it has internal Hi-Def 5.1 audio it does not match what you get out of a good pair of PC speakers. What I found that worked for me was the volume does get high which was an issue on other laptops. Music and games as well as movies will sound good coming out of the M11x and even in a loud room, the speakers are loud enough so you can hear it from the highs to the lows, bass and treble.

The keyboard feels good and types well even when you are slamming the keys crying for a heal. I never liked the touchpad, but this one is built well and does not easily activate when the heel of my hand brushes against it, still, I perfect a USB or wireless mouse.

As for warranty, you receive a 1-year plan, which provides hardware support, and of course phone tech support. I cannot say much here because I have not had a need to use it yet.

Overall

I personally like this system, I am sure there are things that could be better, but for most of us this system will perfectly fit your need for work, school and gaming. The laptop itself feels sturdy and well build and the cool look is a nice touch, but most important is the price and how it performance and it does both well.

I you have questions on the m11x r2 from Alienware leave a comment and I will answer them.

 

Are game reviews valid?

Are game reviews valid? by Honorabili

You might read a game review and be enticed to go buy or play a game but is a review really valid? How long did the reviewer play the game? Does it take into account replayability and updates over the life of the game?

The Quality Triangle
The Quality Triangle

I’ve written a bunch of game reviews but I often find myself with the dilemma of when I sit down and think about how effective the review really is. One of the reasons I created Obsolete Gamer is so that I can honestly review games in a reasonable and realistic manner. It’s really really hard to play a game that hasn’t come out yet or has just come out and play it like a crackhead non-stop to try to simulate having played it over a series of days and weeks. The problem with even doing that is that the game will still be new to me within a week timeframe as opposed to the game having been around in my collection for months. One would be more excited about a new game rather than an old one, unless it’s a really old game that was your favorite and you haven’t played in a while and you just found it because you lost it for some reason.

Planet Side cover
Planet Side cover

This question might not just apply to games but to maybe some movies or things like electronics and cars as well. Most reviews that just get mass produced will say this thing is “the next best thing since sliced bread and you must have it!” but they don’t take into account that for instance a car might have a defect that you will only see after owning it for a year or a game will get ruined by the 5th patch because they changed something that fucked up game balance and it will make people flee playing a game like a sinking ship. This especially happens for MMOs which are changing all the time. PlanetSide comes to mind, which a ton of my friends used to play when it was really, really popular. Your best bet it to read a game review by somebody that has the same tastes as you or to read a review written recently about an old game (like what we write here often, ahem).

A problem I have sometimes running Obsolete Gamer is that some reviews I’ve written, in order to keep them valid, I have to go back and play a game and update the review. One game that does this a lot to me is Nation Red, which updates like at least once a month, with new content added ALL THE TIME! I keep track of this for Obsolete Gamer but many sites will just pump out an article and just file it forever in its archives, never ever updating it again. In my book that makes those reviews useless. If you haven’t already checked out our game reviews do so in this section of the website.

Civilization 5 Crash
Civilization 5 Crash

So what’s the point of reviews? I see many as pieces of writing intended to get the reader to buy or play a game. Many get used to hype up the expectations of the potential and existing fanbase to a game or product. Some are genuinely written to try to warn people to stay away from a particularly poorly made game that would just be a waste of time and money for the player. Sure, I’ve played some games that have gotten bad reviews and found them somewhat more pleasant than this horrible picture the media painted for me. For example, I gave Elemental War of Magic a fair chance and actually it was sad that I enjoyed it more than Civilization 5, a game I had pre-ordered for $50 and now hate with a passion. The media crucified Elemental War of Magic because of its many bugs and shortcomings and yes even Stardock admits screwing up and it resulting as a flop but the difference here is that Elemental War of Magic got patched to the point where it’s very much enjoyable now but it still has a bad reputation as opposed to Civilization 5, which is PRAISED to be the strategy game of the year, although in my and in the eyes of every true Civilization game fan, it’s the biggest pile of shit ever made with the Civilization name. The game is months old and still has most of the bugs and missing features I mentioned in my early review of the game. It’s disappointing especially when they are still selling this turd for so much money. If you want to see this rage, visit the Facebook Civilization Page to join in on the fight!

Psychonauts Box, groovy huh?
Psychonauts Box, groovy huh?

This kind of hypocrisy has been around for many years, and not just in the gaming industry. Whatever has the biggest budget will get hyped up and up and some stuff that does deserve attention will sink into obscurity. Let’s look at small games though because it’s easy for people to say that Call of Duty or Halo or World of Warcraft are the best games EVER but let’s look at small games to see where the industry nailed it and where it dropped the ball. The industry rightly praised Plants vs Zombies and Trine and rightly so but it dropped the ball when it came to a classic gem like Psychonauts. You might say “Yeah, Psychonauts got famous later as a cult classic” but seriously, the people who made it needed the money from the game when it came out, not 4-6 years later! Most people pirated Psychonauts or bought it on Steam for $2 when they had its sale or even from Good Old Games. Think about how many people might have been laid off because the game didn’t do well when it was fresh.

Games are sort of like cars in the economic sense: they degrade in value over time. The money they make for the developer the most is earned when they are new and fresh. When they are on sale because they flopped or they’re old is marginal. The money the developer gets from ebgames or some other place selling you a used copy is NOTHING. I’m not saying go out there and buy every game because I do believe some stuff should have never come out and is not even worth downloading a pirated copy (a topic for another article), but if you do LOVE a game, whether you played it a friends house, got a demo, or are playing a warez copy, do try to buy it to pay back the creators and people whose life was spent writing that game. The economy is a democracy in the sense that you vote with your wallet. If you like the games made by certain authors and programmers and studios, keep them in business. Don’t you want your friends to do well?

Odium, a game few have played with like no reviews
Odium, a game few have played with like no reviews

I’m getting sidetracked, so going back to reviews, if you can’t find a good review for a game or a review at all, do a little research instead. See if there are people who posted information on forums regarding the quality of a game. Some stuff might be too new and small for people to review or it might be just really really BAD. Sometimes that’s a way to tell but sometimes the game might just be a lost gem that you have found. Give games a chance and don’t always go with what the mass media wants you to play. I don’t know how busy your life is, but try to not let people make a decision for you. This also doesn’t apply to just games as well but life as a whole. Discover something you will like. Try out a new genre if you’re bored of gaming in general or go out and do something else to get a new perspective. This might keep you from burning out on something.

Who knows what may happen? You might just find a game that becomes a new favorite of yours and you might end up like us writing reviews on them yourselves and websites like this one or maybe this one as well. ;] Just make sure that you honestly share your opinion on a game… To yourself be true and to others as well, if you can. Save people the aggravation of buying a lemon!

Games Coming Out December 2010 For PC

TRON hot girl
TRON hot girl

Games Coming Out December 2010 For PC by Honorabili

I can’t believe December is such a weak month this year but then again not that many studios are going to be suicidal enough to go up against a WoW expansion…Read More

Martyn Brown: Team 17 Software

Team 17 logo
Team 17 logo

Name: Martyn Brown

Company: Team17 Software Ltd.

Profession: Everything over the years, currently heading up business development at Team17.

Favorite Classic Game: Football Manager (ZX Spectrum, circa 1983)

Quote: “I openly admit hiding behind the sofa, not able to look, when I guided the mighty Lincoln City to Wembley.”

Bio: I co-founded Team17 in 1990 and have been here for 20yrs. Recent releases in 2010 for Team17 have been Worms Reloaded on Steam for PC,  Alien Breed: Impact on Steam and PlayStation Network for PS3, Alien Breed 2: Assault on XBLA and Steam, Worms 2: Armageddon on PlayStation Network for PS3 and also on iPhone and iPad. Forthcoming releases include Alien Breed 2: Assault on PSN, Alien Breed 3: Descent for XBLA, Steam and PSN and also Worms: Battle Islands for PSP from PlayStation Network as well.

Games Coming Out For PC On November 2010

Archon Classic
Archon Classic

Archon Classic, November 2 2010

If you’ve never played Archon for the c64 then you’re probably missing out on the original hardcore pvp game based on chess and fantasy wars. I am totally getting this! Actually I just bought it on Steam and I hate Steam. Here is the link.

Call of Duty: Black Ops, November 9 2010

The CoD franchise is going strong and this seems like another solid title for FPS fans.

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, November 16 2010

This franchise is the same thing over and over again. Kind of bored of it and how unrealistic they are. Do any of the things in these games and end up arrested or dead in real life. I’d rather play more serious racing games.

Create, November 16 2010

Kind of neat to see EA try to release a puzzle game. Let’s see how this venture goes for them. Seems like a variation on Gary’s Mod.

The Obsolete Gamer Show: Episode 7

PVP vs non-pvp PVE
PVP vs non-pvp PVE

Player versus Player and Player versus Environment was the topic for this week’s show. We were happy to have our good friend Edwin in the studio with us and had a great conversation via Skype with longtime Obsolete Gamer fan, Liz Poisonkiss.

We started off with a recap of last week’s show which featured MMO’s and then moved into our Facebook fanpage question of the week which asked which our fans preferred to play PVE or PVP type games. From there we talked about our Insider Discussion question of the week which asked our panel which had a bigger impact on PC gaming RTS or FPS games.

From there we dove right into the main topic discussing the differences between a FPS mindset playing games such as Quake 2 and the strategy side of RTS games such as the original Warcraft game. Edwin also talked about his online Street Fighter games and said that he preferred to play again a human which we all agreed.

We premiered a new feature on OGS called Skype with a fan where we talk with people who have participated on our Facebook page and Forums and our first guest was longtime fan Liz. Who shared her thoughts on being a gamer girl, fps versus rts and pvp versus pve.

In our final segment Ignacio, Edwin and I discussed our various experiences in PVP from MMO’s to X-box live to arcades. Overall we had a good discussion about an important subject in the world of gaming. So give us a listen and we will be back next week with a brand new show.

The Obsolete Gamer Show: Episode 7

There Are Games On Macs. It’s True!

PC vs Mac Steam
PC vs Mac Steam

For those late to the party, Macs are finally getting some PC gaming love from Valve’s digital gaming distribution service called Steam. With this new cross-platform addition to the Macs arsenal, the chic liberal Starbucks drinking hippies can now play Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, Portal, and other Valve games built on Source. For those who weren’t aware, there was an offer to get iPod ear buds for the purchase of a Mac copy of Team Fortress 2 which could carry on to your PC version as well since the Steam Cloud works cross platform. I mention this because it also means that whatever saved state you have on your PC will move over to the Mac and vice versa so you don’t have to start all over again.

One other neat little quirk is that Mac players don’t play with only Mac users as some other games seem to segregate them to their lonesome selves. The battle against the PC and Mac can now take place with more than just words. Someone in your L4D2 team using a Mac? Let a tank flip a car on him while you rush to the safe house. Tired of the shit talkers on the PC talking down to your little apple? Become a spy, pretend to be his friend, sap his sentry and take a nice stab to their back. Finally, the war can be waged.

The scenario I described does sound a bit immature but I assure you that the internet is serious business. From personal experience, playing TF2 since the Mac launch I have seen Mac and PC users alike verbally assault one another in a brutal fashion and even personally attempt to dominate the OSX or Windows lovers specifically. It has brought a new flavor to gaming online in Source games and it’s a welcome rivalry that I think many are glad to finally play a more aggressive stance in. The only downside I find in all of this is when someone asks me if they should buy a Mac I can’t say “There are no games on a Mac.” With World of Warcraft and Source’s amazing multiplayer online games that’s all you’d really need to have as a Mac user. Before someone begins the debate that Call of Duty is better than Team Fortress 2 and that is reason enough to not buy a Mac… you need to eat a bag of dicks. Team Fortress 2 is superior to Call of Duty. I know this may cause some internet rage but that’s my stance on it and if you haven’t given Team Fortress 2 or any Valve games a chance yet you can purchase the entire Valve Library for $66.99 this weekend. That’s 22 games for the PC and 6 are available for the Mac. For those who have yet to play Steam on the Mac, what are you waiting for? Let the shit talking and rocket flying begin!

Portal is Free!

Portal Logo
Portal Logo

Portal is Free!

Until May 24th, Portal is now free. The game is short and most people can beat it in a few hours, so it’s worth checking out this short classic before the free period runs out, if you don’t have it already.

Portal is available for PC and for Mac.

Click here to get the game free and play it now.

Steam Sale – Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare 1 for $14.99

Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare 1
Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare 1

Steam Sale – Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare 1 for $14.99

If you are a fan of FPS games and you still don’t have Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare, you have been missing out. Now is a good time to pick it up for $14.99 from Steam.

CoD4-MW1 is a total hit of a game and it actually lived up to its hype. The single player campaign is a lot of fun and is exciting. My favorite part of the game being the sniper mission and another part which I won’t tell since it would be a spoiler. It is shocking, though. ;-]

The game is worth buying especially since you can find a lot of players still playing this game, although a lot will be playing its sequel, Modern Warfare 2. Still, since there is a problem with the people who made this game (they fired them), I’ll take as much Modern Warfare from the original Infinity Ward team as I can.

Click here to go to the sale.

Machinarium review en espanol

Machinarium screenshot
Machinarium screenshot

Machinarium review en español por Leandro Montesanto


DESARROLLADORA:
AMANITA DESIGN
TITULO:
MACHINARIUM
FECHA DE SALIDA: 16 de octubre del 2009
VALOR: formato virtual+ost 20 dolares;formato fisico edicion coleccionista 7 libras
PLATAFORMAS: PC (windows,linux,mac)
PUNTAJE TOTAL: 10/10
DEMO GRATUITA ONLINE: http://machinarium.net/demo/
Reseña en una oracion: la nueva escuela de juegos recibe a su artistico avatar

Prologo:

Juego realizado por la empresa Checa, Amanita Design, en el 2009; en el cual usamos a un robot sin nombre, al que se le denominara “machi” con motivos de practicidad, este es desechado como chatarra y su mision es rescatar a su novia de las manos de la hermandad Capa Negra; el despliegue resonante de su simpleza no hace valor al gran juego “point and click” (aventura grafica para nosotros) que hoy decidi reseñar ya que su ambientacion cyberpunk, su banda sonora, su sistema de juego, la forma en la cual esta contada la historia, sus coloridos escenarios y sus intrincados puzzles son lo mas fresco que vi en años de jugon.


Jugabilidad, ambientacion y mi historia con el juego:

El juego, como mencione anteriormente, transcurre en un ambiente cyberpunk, puede sonar extraño para muchos es “cute” en si, adorable, pero a su vez caotico, recuerda mucho a la vida urbana, ya que cada robot cumple un rol. Hay barrios bajos y artistas entre ellos. Un detalle sorprendente es la iglesia que tiene horarios para que los robots vayan a rezar, programados a cumplir funciones hasta el fin de los tiempos. Al ser una aventura grafica novedosa e ingeniosa, cuenta la historia de los involucrados a travez de dialogos globos tipo comics pero con animaciones simples dentro de ellas como dibujadas por un niño haciendo que se pueda jugar en cualquier pais sin necesidad de ser traducido. El sistema de juego aplica las leyes del espacio y el rango de alcance de machi ya que no podemos con el mouse atravesar la pantalla para ver que items podemos asir (agarrar) si machi no esta en un rango determinado cercano al objeto, ademas puede estirar su cuerpo verticalmente para alcanzar objetos en lo alto. Si tenemos problemas para darnos una idea de como solucionar los puzzles (un tip como se dice) podemos clickear el icono superior derecho (una lamparita) que nos orientara para seguir nuestro camino y si realmente te rendis no hace falta buscar una guia solo debemos acceder a un minijuego (en la parte superior derecha tambien) en un libro que recuerda mucho a los antigüos matamarcianos sidescroll. Vale aclarar que los puzzles estan espectacularmente armados y proveeran a los jugones de la vieja escuela un desafio. A mi personalmente me costaron mucho pero no soy un asiduo jugador de aventuras graficas; como agregado hace referencias a juegos de antaño un ejemplo seria un cameo al lado de la puerta del arcade nada mas ni nada menos que Space Invaders.

Musica y sonidos:

La musica derrocha calidad, tiene tonos jazzeros de a momentos, tranquila, melancolica, te sumerge en ese mundo bohemio y como si fuera poco al ser en su totalidad ambiental realiza un trabajo estupendo para calmarte cuando estas “luchando” contra un puzzle en tu cabeza. Ahora mismo la estoy escuchandolo para realizar esta reseña. Es importante destacar que fue creada por Tomas Dvorak, artista contemporaneo checo del cual recomiendo, si les ha gustado, sus otros trabajos musicales firmados con el pseudonimo de Floex. Los sonidos son acordes a la situacion, no destacan pero acompañan.

Controles y estabilidad:

El sitema de controles es simple, como en toda aventura grafica usamos casi enteramente el mouse, pero en los minijuegos tenemos la opcion de usar el teclado, haciendo la interface mucho mas intiuitiva y estimulante; con respecto a la estabilidad personalmente no tuve ningun problema, pero a algunos amigos tuvieron problema con el save del juego, ya que lo tomaba como archivo temporal y al pasar el ccleanr se eliminaba; debido a eso Amanita Design creo un parche de estabilidad rapidamente, se puede acceder a el via el blog de la empresa. Las nuevas ediciones del juego vienen con los parches incorporados.

Valor:

Su version en formato virtual puede conseguirse a 20 dolares en la pagina del Machinarium, con el OST incluido en formato mp3 para windows, mac o linux. Ademas para windows puede conseguirse via Steam, Impulse (para comprar esa version hasle click aqui), Direct 2 Drive y Gamers Gate; como si esto fuera poco, puede conseguirse la vercion fisica que fue lanzada este año que contiene el OST, un poster y un artwork en formato fisico para mac y windows a un precio especial de 7 libras via e bay o amazon.

Conclucion:

Una experiencia inigualable recomiendo que prueben los otros juegos de la empresa, en especial el Samorost 1 y 2

 

Links de interes:

Amanita design blog: http://machinarium.net/blog/ (se puede bajar la demo)
Amanita design website: http://www.amanitadesign.com/

Global Agenda: Free Trial

Global Agenda logo
Global Agenda logo

Its one thing to get something for free it’s another if what you are getting also happens to be awesome. The high-action FPS MMO Global Agenda is now offering a free trial. All you have to do is head on over to their free trial page and download the game.

What is Global Agenda?

Global Agenda is a massively-multiplayer online third-person shooter video game developed by Hi-Rez Studios. It uses the Unreal engine and is unique because it offers a onetime fee and monthly subscription option. What this means is you can purchase the game and play it on your PC alone and with others that have purchased the game or you can add a monthly subscription to gain access to additional features.

Now the game itself has a Planetside slash Tribes feel. Known as a TPS or third person shooter your main task is advancing your agency (guild) and improving your character. You do this by leveling up; gearing your character and killing other NPC’s and rival agencies.

In the wake of severe global disaster, the political face of 22nd century earth has changed and player-created factions scheme against each other for power. Traditional full-scale wars are a thing of the past, factions must rely on covert agencies, teams of elite special operatives able to seize and defend key facilities. The future of humanity is their battleground, where knowledge is power, technology is a race, and everyone has an agenda.

Now keep in mind this is a trail so you don’t get everything you would if you purchased the game. Here is the rundown from their website:

You can play the Global Agenda Trial as much as you like but you are only getting a taste of the game, and some features are not available in the trial version.

Buying the game one time unlocks most multi-player shooter components of the game, with no subscription required ever. An optional subscription package, called Conquest, unlocks additional MMO features, including the Alliance vs Alliance gameplay for on-going territory control. Conquest is free for all purchasers until Version 1.3: Sandstorm is released.

Now if you download the game and decide to keep it you can purchase the full version on Steam and unlock the following.nd Level 15, unlocking additional devices and skill points.

  1. Use the Auction House to sell and purchase items.
  2. Access high-end PvE content.
  3. Ability to choose your PvP match type.
  4. Receive higher login priority (as a trial member, you may not be able to play if other players have a higher login priority than you).
  5. Join an Agency.
  6. Use in-game mail to send items, credits and messages to other players.
  7. Use voice chat.
  8. Play the subscription-based Conquest content free until the end of April, 2010.
  9. …and more

In addition, if you purchase today, you receive the ability to play the optional Global Agenda Conquest subscription content free until the end of April, 2010. This includes the Alliance vs Alliance Gameplay for on-going territory control.

So what are you waiting for, go get your trial now!

Portal 2: Coming this Holiday Season

Portal 2
Portal 2

Portal is just one of those games that if you get into it you become totally engrossed in it. The game-play is fun, the puzzles are great and the sounds and music is awesome. Portal was widely played during its first release, on the Orange Box and even in flash game remakes.

Now get ready for Portal 2. Valve has confirmed that Portal 2 is set for release this holiday season. Now what they did not say is what platform it will be released for, but I’m a betting man and I’m sure it will be multiplatform, PC and Console.

There have been little hints and teases from Valve this past week including, updating the first Portal on its Steam client with new Morse code sound files, and even a new ending sequence. So now we have confirmation. This will defiantly be a game to watch and as more information becomes available we will bring it to you.

The Death of PC Gaming: Not just yet!

Game Over tombstone
Game Over tombstone

Now if you’ve read any of the other articles in the series you would have seen me write about how many software companies rather not create titles for PC anymore choosing instead to go with consoles. Even though this is still the case for many developers the last few months have been pretty good for PC titles.

Below are the PC Digital Download charts for the week ending Feb 27th as well as overall top PC game sales for direct download sites and though some of the games listed there are also multiplatform titles there are a lot of big names there and exclusive PC titles.

Steam

    1. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 LE (Pre-Order) – DICE
    2. *Supreme Commander 2 – Gas Powered Games
    3. *Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – Infinity Ward
    4. *Napoleon: Total War Imperial Edition – Creative Assembly
    5. *Aliens vs. Predator – Rebellion
    6. *Napoleon: Total War – Creative Assembly
    7. Assassin’s Creed 2 (Pre-Order) – Ubisoft Montreal
    8. SpellForce 2: Gold Edition – Phenomic
    9. Dawn of War II – Chaos Rising (Pre-Order) – Relic
    10. BioShock 2 – 2K Marin, Digital Extremes
    11. *Left 4 Dead 2 – Valve
    12. Mass Effect 2 – BioWare

Direct2Drive

    1. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 LE (Pre-Order) – EA DICE
    2. Star Trek Online Digital Deluxe Edition – Cryptic
    3. BioShock 1 + 2 Bundle – 2K Games
    4. Star Trek Online – Cryptic
    5. Dragon Age: Origins + Awakening Pre-Order Bundle – BioWare
    6. Civilization 4 Complete – Firaxis
    7. Aion – NCSoft
    8. Mass Effect 2 Digital Deluxe Edition – BioWare
    9. BioShock 2 – 2K Marin, Digital Extremes
    10. Mass Effect 2 – BioWare

Impulse

    1. *Sins of a Solar Empire Trinity Pack – Ironclad
    2. *Sins of a Solar Empire: Diplomacy – Ironclad
    3. *Sins of a Solar Empire Expansion Bundle – Ironclad
    4. Dawn of Discovery Gold – Blue Byte
    5. Mount & Blade – Taleworlds
    6. *GalCiv II: Ultimate Edition – Stardock
    7. *Sins of a Solar Empire: Entrenchment – Ironclad
    8. Ecochron Legends – StarWrath3D
    9. Eufloria – Omni-Labs
    10. Supreme Commander Gold – Gas Powered Games

GOG

    1. Psychonauts
    2. Advent Rising
    3. Bloodrayne 2
    4. Bloodrayne
    5. Gabriel Knight 2: The Beast Within
    6. Arcanum
    7. Phantasmagoria 2
    8. Call to Power 2
    9. King’s Quest 4-5-6
    10. Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers

Now add to this the fact that the rising popularity of direct gaming download sites are promoting older games and the upcoming releases of PC mega hits like Civilization V and we could be seeing the beginning of a resurgence.

Trine

Trine
Trine

Trine review by Honorabili

One Sentence Review:
“Symphony of the Night + The Lost Vikings + Out of This World = fun!”

Overall Score:

8 out of 10

Overview:

Trine is a fantasy action puzzle platformer game that consists of three soul-bound characters that got trapped that way at the beginning of the game through magic making their way through each map in stages. You switch characters depending on which one you want to use, in the style of The Lost Vikings, only that all three characters take up the same place, rather than like in The Lost Vikings each being an independent character that you control once at a time.

The three characters are a mage, a rogue archer, and a warrior.

The mage can move objects around through magic and summon magic cubes/planks, which you can use to use to jump higher or drop on enemies.

The rogue archer is basically the most powerful character in the game. She can fire a ton of arrows that although they don’t do as much damage as the warrior, you can eventually fire multiple numbers of them and you can dispatch enemies safely at a distance. The best ability she has is firing a grappling arrow, sort of like the grappling hook gun that Batman has, which you can use to climb up, slide down, rock back and forth, swing, and all sorts of crazy acrobatics. She can light torches by firing flame arrows at them. For me, she’s basically the main character to use.

The warrior is supposed to be the main fighter, although the rogue archer is superior in my eyes. He mainly mashes things, whether parts of the terrain or boxes or enemies. He can also pick stuff up and move it around and he has a shield which absorbs most damage, so long as you angle it properly. He can also light torches, simply by chopping them with his sword.

There are 3 stats in this game, health, mana/energy, and XP.

Health is pretty self explanatory, with some enemies dropping hearts which can heal you. You can also heal by going to a checkpoint, if your health is lower than the minimum that difficulty setting designates as the minimum.

Mana/energy gets used up any time the mage does anything, or to do special attacks for the other two characters. The rogue archer mainly uses the energy to fire lit arrows when you pick up that power. The warrior uses energy to perform special attacks. You replentish mana/energy by going to the next checkpoint or by picking up blue vials which some enemies drop, which this is the most common drop in the game.

The last stat is XP. You pick this up in green vials that are scattered throughout the map (mainly in hard to reach places) and by killing enemies. When you get enough XP all three characters level up and you get a certain amount of character points which you use to purchase new powers or improve old ones.

The final thing to mention regarding general gameplay is that there are different treasures/loot hidden throughout the maps. Each one can boost your powers by a set amount or add a completely different kind of power to the character. For example, I picked up an item which lets my mage swim under water for unlimited amounts of time.

The game gets told as a fairy tale story, and it’s really well done in that sense.

As of the time of this writing, this game is only available on PC. You can play the demo here from Steam.

This is an indie title by Frozenbyte. It has gained a lot of acclaim/awards from other gaming sites. Overall, it’s a great, although short game.

Fun Factor:

This game is a lot of fun, especially the first time through. There are many different approaches and solutions towards getting through an area or fighting enemies and to me that makes for an intelligent game, which most games are not these days, especially a platformer game. The atmosphere and way the game got made keeps you playing. The first time I played the game I was dead tired and started playing it at 11 PM. I went to bed that day at 5 AM.

For the first playthrough I give the game a Fun Factor score of 9 out of 10. For the repeat plays, I give it a score of 6 out of 10, maybe even 7 if it’s been a while.

Difficulty Versatility:

There are different difficulties but they are mostly the same. The only difference I found in game play is that the amount of health that you get when a character dies and resurrects at the checkpoints is lowered the harder you set it. I got really good at this game real fast so I would recommend playing it right from the start at the max difficulty. Most of the game is pretty easy to me, but some parts are tricky. Difficulty Versatility gets a score of 6 out of 10.

Value:

When I got this game it was $5 (when I announced the sale last time). At that cost, the game is an amazing value.

When it’s not on sale, this game usually goes for about $20. At the time of this writing, you can get it for that much through ebgames.com in DVD and also as the downloaded version. You can get it for the same price through Steam.

You can also get it from Impulse here, which is one of our sponsors.

Trine
$19.99

For $20, considering it took me 5-6 hours to beat the game the first time, it’s not so much a great value. At that cost, I’d give Value a score of 4 out of 10. At a cost of $10, I’d give it a 6 out of 10. At $5, I’d give Value a score of 8 out of 10.

Replayability:

This is a pretty short game. I’ve played it twice so far and the game was predictable the entire 2nd playthrough. I have a good memory and since I just played it back to back, I will probably revisit this game in a year or two. I’d give replayability a 4 out of 10, mainly because it’s such a well made game and the action is well done.

Sound:

The voice acting for the game is great. I enjoy when they argue with each other, regarding the path they are taking for solving the main plot. It’s comical. The mage is a shy dork, the rogue archer is a hot sexy lady, and the warrior is a dumb jock.

The sound effects are well done too. The arrows sound real. The smashing of the warrior’s sword or the impact on his shield sound amazing. Sound gets a score of 8 out of 10. I would have given it a higher score, if it had more voice acting.

Music:

The music for the game is beautiful. It goes well with the atmostphere and the fairy tale setting. The music sometimes reminds me of a Tim Burton kind of fairy tale movie. Danny Elfman would be proud! It is written by Ari Pulkkinen. I wish it were available for download. The music from Trine gets a score of 10 out of 10. It’s simply beautiful.

Graphics:

The game looks beautiful. It reminds me sort of the style that the first Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen had, only from the point of view of a side-scrolling platformer instead of the top down and not pixelated at all. They look well drawn and the game is simply beautiful. For what this game is, the Graphics deserve a score of 10 out of 10.

Stability/Reliability:

The game runs rock solid even while alt-tabbing the living hell out of it. Nothing to complain here. It loads up quickly as well each time. Stability/Reliability gets a score of 10 out of 10.

Controls:

The controls are simple and fluid. Standard WASD + mouse combo work like a charm for Trine. Once you’ve played the game for a while, you will be able to use each character almost as if it’s second nature to you. It doesn’t take long to get used to the controls. Eventually you will find yourself just drilling everything with the rogue archer and the enemies won’t stand a chance. Controls get a score of 10 out of 10.

Performance:

The game runs perfectly on most gaming machines, even some obsolete ones. I never saw lag, not even once during any part of this game. The levels load up quickly as well. Performance gets a score of 10 out of 10.

My history with this game:

This was one of over 300 games I bought during the Steam holiday sale. Although the game is short I enjoyed playing it as much nearly as when I played Castlevania: Symphony of the Night for the first time. I would recommend it to people who like that game a lot, who are PC gamers.

Games coming out March 2010 for PC

Supreme Commander 2
Supreme Commander 2

Games coming out March 2010 for PC by Honorabili

A lot of people were interested in this kind of article so here are my picks for what might be good coming this March 2010, for PC.

Supreme Commander 2, March 2 for PC

Battlefield: Bad Company 2, March 2 for PC

Sam and Max 2 Beyond Time and Space, March 9 for PC

Assassin’s Creed 2, March 8 for PC, March 16 via Steam for PC

Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising, March 11 for PC

Command & Conquer 4, March 16 for PC

Metro 2033, March 16 for PC

Dragon Age Origins: Awakening, March 16 for PC

Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom, March 23 for PC

Just Cause 2, March 23 for PC

Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City, March 30 for PC

Mount & Blade: Warband, March 30 for PC

Description/Feedback/Why do we care?:

Supreme Commander 2
I want to see what sort of influence Square-Enix will have on the development on this RTS game. I also wonder if I will need to buy another PC just for this one. ;-]

Battlefield: Bad Company 2
Battlefield always competes (on PC) against Call of Duty. Will this take the crown from COD:MW2?

Sam and Max 2 Beyond Time and Space
More Sam and Max insanity and humor, which most adventure gamers crave.

Assassin’s Creed 2
Will Ubisoft remove the online only DRM that they claim to have implemented on this PC release? We’ll see. That will dictate on whether I will buy it or not. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, click here.

Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising
I’m looking forward to this expansion pack making up for all the downfalls of the first game that many purists of DoW1 complain about. I have no beef with DoW2 so if they don’t, I’ll still probably enjoy this.

Command & Conquer 4
The C&C series is a money maker for EA. Let’s see if they will have the action of the first game. I didn’t like C&C 3 that much. I find the Red Alert titles more fun.

Metro 2033
Stalker, Fatherland, and Iron Storm come to mind when I saw the trailer for this game. Let’s see if it will blend the atmosphere of those movies and games correctly.

Dragon Age Origins: Awakening
I didn’t like the first game because I found the dialogue to drag on and the A.I. to literally be annoying and retarded. However, a lot of people like this game. Just giving you a heads-up on it and maybe, just maybe, the A.I. will be fixed on this one.

Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom
People in the States don’t know Settlers much but this is a huge series of classic RTS games that are very popular in Europe. I’ve played the original on Amiga a lot and Settlers 2 and 3 a lot back in the late 90s.

Just Cause 2
More GTA clone with a Tropico/Mercenaries 2 twist to it? Sign me up.

Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City
Kind of sad that this is finally coming out for PC but since I didn’t play this one on console and a lot of people like it, it might be good.

Mount & Blade: Warband
A ton of multiplayer functionality and more has been added to this expansion pack for Mount & Blade.

Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising promotion

Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising
DoW2 Chaos Rising promo

Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising – Steam promotion

The expansion to Dawn of War 2 “Chaos Rising” is now for sale for $30 on Steam. If you get it, they give you a free copy of the GTA clone Saints Row 2 (which to me is a superior game).

Chaos Rising will be available on March 11th, 2010. This expansion to DoW 2 adds the Chaos faction. More stuff is added to the campaign, the ability to warp (or keep them from it) team members, a higher level cap for heroes in the campaign, new gear and toys, 2 new “heroes” for the Last Stand (Chaos and Tyranid), more expansions for multiplayer modes, etc.

Saints Row 2 is basically a much more fun version of GTA 4, except with better comedy and non-stop action and less micro managing stuff that makes GTA annoying now.

The link to get the DoW 2 expansion and Saints Row 2 (bundled) is: http://store.steampowered.com/app/20570/

Steam Sale – Quantz for $3

Quantz
Quantz

Steam Sale – Quantz for $3

If you enjoy inexpensive puzzle games that you can replay often over and over then you will like Quantz (especially at $2.99).

The game consists of making combinations of marbles on a rotatable cube get together to create an explosive reaction and making the rest of the marbles disappear as soon as possible. There are other game modes as well that play similar yet differently.

Games coming out February and March 2010

aliens vs predator new
aliens vs predator new

Games coming out February and March 2010

A lot of big games have been coming out this early 2010. More great games are coming out soon as well. The following are the ones that I like for the next 2 months:

Aliens vs Predator, February 16 for PC

Napoleon: Total War, February 23 for PC

Supreme Commander 2, March 2 for PC

Battlefield: Bad Company 2, March 2 for PC

Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising, March 11 for PC

Assassin’s Creed 2, March 16 for PC

Metro 2033, March 16 for PC

Let’s talk a little bit about them.

Aliens vs Predator
The original AVP is one of my favorite FPS games of all time. It’s actually quite scary and FAST as all hell. The new game is a remake of that game and looks to be done as its spiritual successor.

Napoleon: Total War
The Total War series is always great for (most) war gamers. I look forward to yet another title to this great series.

Supreme Commander 2
Supreme Commander 1 among my friends is known for how badly it killed their systems. I hope 2 is optimized for performance and continues the brilliant interface that part 1 had for handling your big armies. I hope they kept the awesome zoom GUI.

Battlefield: Bad Company 2
I wonder how strong this game will be. Can it compete with everybody out there playing Modern Warfare 2?

Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 2 Chaos Rising
The Dawn of War series I always love. They are the RTS games I usually play the most. I’ve been looking forward to this expansion for a while. Now that more of my friends got DoW 2 I have more people to play with and the game needs more content/factions, so keep them coming Relic/THQ.

Assassin’s Creed 2
Finally! I keep hearing how good this is from my console gamers. (ahem) Well maybe it will be like with Mass Effect 1 where the PC version turns out to be superior later. Either way, I will still play the living hell out of this game, at least until I destroy it.

Metro 2033
This game reminds me of a mix of the game Stalker, the movie Fatherland, and the game Iron Storm. Looks nice!

Steam Sale – both Far Cry games

Far Cry
Far Cry

Steam Sale – both Far Cry games

This week both Far Cry 1 and 2 are on sale through Steam. Far Cry is selling for $4.99 and Far Cry 2 is selling for $9.99. Part 1 is worth picking up for that price. I have yet to play part 2 and I’ve heard mixed things about it from some friends.

The link to the Steam Sale is the following: http://store.steampowered.com/search/?term=far+cry

Titan Quest: Gold Edition sale on Steam only $4.99

Titan's Quest Expansion
Titan's Quest Expansion

The great Steam sale of 2010 continues with Titan Quest and Titan Quest – The Immortal Throne both for only $4.99.

Check out the review here.

From developer THQ and Age of Empires co-creator Brian Sullivan and Braveheart writer Randall Wallace comes an innovative, action role playing game set in ancient Greece, Egypt and Asia.

The Titans have escaped their eternal prison, wreaking havoc upon the earth. The gods seek a hero who can turn the tide in an epic struggle that will determine the fate of both men and gods

The link for to get the game through Steam for $5 is the following: http://store.steampowered.com/sub/402/

Steam Sale – Tropico 3 for $14

Tropico 3 cover
Tropico 3 cover

Steam Sale – Tropico 3 for $14

Oppressing the masses never felt so good as for $14! If you don’t know Tropico, you take the role of your “favorite” dictator and run your own Cuba, in the style of a Sim City game only with people trying to kill you.

Tropico 3 is currently on sale through Steam for $13.60 at the following link:

http://store.steampowered.com/app/23490/

Psychonauts for sale on Steam for only $2

Psychonauts cover
Psychonauts cover

Psychonauts for sale on Steam for only $2

Psychonauts, Tim Schafer’s best game, only for $2 through Steam! This is one of the best platformer/puzzle games ever made. It’s one of my favorites! Must have!!!!!!

The link to get it is the following: http://store.steampowered.com/app/3830/

Steam Sale – Company of Heroes for $12.49

Company of Heroes header
Company of Heroes header

Steam Sale – Company of Heroes for $12.49

One of our favorite and hardest RTS games, Company of Heroes is on sale this weekend through Steam for only $12.49. The link to buy it is: http://store.steampowered.com/sub/1529/

You get the original game and both expansion packs included. They would all regularly sell for a combined price of $50.