Author: John Scalzo

John Scalzo is Warp Zoned's Editor-In-Chief and resident retro gaming expert. You can follow him on Twitter or email him at john AT warpzoned DOT com.

Angry Birds Transformers Review: Another Crass Crossover? Nope, Rovio’s Latest Is More Than Meets the Eye

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Most crossovers exist somewhere on a spectrum that reads “Logical, But Boring” on one side and “This Makes ABSOLUTELY No Sense” on the other. When Rovio mashed together their Angry Birds with the furious fowl from Rio, the pieces fit together perfectly. On the surface, Angry Birds Transformers definitely seems to slide towards the latter option. How do you mix birds, pigs, and Robots In Disguise? I’m still not sure it makes any sense, but Rovio was somehow able to take these disparate elements and create a pretty good game.

I know, I’m as surprised as you are. But I probably shouldn’t be. (more…)

Posted in Mobile, Reviews, Top Story | Tagged

Insert Quarter: A Profile of the Video Game Archivists at the Library of Congress

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Insert Quarter is our showcase for some of the best and most interesting writing about video games on the Internet.

With more than 6,000 titles, the Library of Congress is home to one of the largest video game archives in the world. But the curation and management of the collection is in the hands of just four part-time employees. BuzzFeed’s Joseph Bernstein reached out to these four men to learn how the Library of Congress is attempting to preserve America’s gaming heritage and how much more still needs to be done:

No, the work of game copyrighting and archiving at our country’s signal institution for cultural preservation is not done by a dedicated full-time staff. Instead, it’s the passion project of a handful of archivists who want to be the new standard-bearers in the preservation of video games. Indeed, the state of video game collection at the Library is something of an expression of the liminal state of video games in American popular culture writ large. The Library recognizes the cultural importance of video games, but only devotes four people part-time to their archiving; Game companies insist that their products are the medium of the future, but don’t trust archives with their source code; Collectors sell their troves on Craigslist and eBay rather than considering donation.

Even to get to this point, though, has been a journey in and of itself.

You can read the rest of the article at BuzzFeed.

Posted in 3DS, DS, Mobile, News, PC, PS2, PS3, PS4, PSP, Vita, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One |

Xbox Store Today: Volgarr the Viking

Crazy Viking Studios has added Volgarr the Viking, their retro-styled side-scroller, to the Xbox Games Store for the Xbox One today. With it hand-drawn art and “high” difficulty level, Volgarr the Viking is meant to evoke the feeling of a lost NES/Super NES classic.

Volgarr the Viking ($9.99)
Remember when games were tough? Return to the Golden Age of arcades with an all-NEW hardcore action experience that pulls no punches. Volgarr the Viking possesses all the hallmarks of the true classics – simple controls, high challenge, and meticulous design – combined with hand-made pixel animation, an epic soundtrack, and buckets of blood. Flex your gaming muscles and step into the arena with Volgarr the Viking. We dare you.

As you can see, Volgarr the Viking has been priced at $9.99 for the Xbox One community. But if you’re an Xbox Live Gold subscriber, you can get it for free as part of Microsoft’s Games With Gold offer for November.

Posted in News, Xbox One |



Tom Savini will bring the slasher genre to PC, PS4, Xbox One with Summer Camp

Tom Savini, the wizard of gore responsible for Dawn of the Dead and Friday the 13th, has teamed up with Gun Media to create Summer Camp, a splatter-themed game for the PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Wes Keltner, the founder of Gun Media, is heading up the project and he has also recruited Harry Manfredini, creator of the “Ch Ch, Ch, Chhh, Ah, Ah, Ah, Ahhh” sound from Friday the 13th, to compose the soundtrack.

“This is my love letter to the classic films of the slasher/splatter era,” said Wes Keltner, Founder and Creative Director of Gun Media. “I want that experience of being helpless, running for my life against an unstoppable killer. But I knew I needed help to do it right. Who else could I turn to for a campy, 80s slasher than the Sultan of Splatter, Tom Savini? His FX defined the splatter/slasher genre.”

Summer Camp will be a third-person survival horror game set within the spooky confines of Camp Forest Green (Easter Egg Alert! Camp Crystal Lake was known as Camp Forest Green in Friday the 13th Part VI). A masked killer is on the loose and players will take control of a teen counselor attempting to survive the night in the multiplayer game. Teaming up with five-to-seven additional counselors, players will work together to evade the killer. However, if you identify with Jason more than those naughty oversexed teens, you can also play as the killer and stalk your prey until the morning light.

Gun Media plans to create an entire series of games based on 80s-style splatter movies and Summer Camp is just the first entry in what they’re calling the “Slasher Series.”

Posted in News, PC, PS4, Xbox One | Tagged

Shadow of the Eternals lives on at Quantum Entanglement Entertainment

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Shadow of the Eternals, a spiritual successor to Eternal Darkness, was put “on hold” more than a year ago after two failed Kickstarter campaigns and other development woes. But now development on the title has begun again thanks to Quantum Entanglement Entertainment also known as QE2).

Quantum Entanglement Entertainment is a new media conglomerate that will attempt to produce games, films, and television shows all under the same roof. The gaming division will be headed up by Denis Dyack, the founder of Silicon Knights (the developer behind Eternal Darkness) and the former Chief Creative Officer of Precursor Games (the original developer behind Shadow of the Eternals).

The Shadow of the Eternals page on Quantum Entanglement’s website is currently rather sparse, currently containing just a few screenshots and a pair of trailers originally released last year. The game was originally in development for the PC, PS4, and Wii U using Crytek’s CryEngine, but it’s unknown if that’s still the case.

Hopefully, we’ll learn more about the future of Shadow of the Eternals soon.

Posted in News | Tagged

Prey 2 has officially been canceled by Bethesda

prey-2-sBethesda’s Pete Hines is at PAX Australia today and one of the first things he did was tell CNET that Prey 2 has been officially canceled:

“It was game we believed in, but we never felt that it got to where it needed to be – we never saw a path to success if we finished it,” Hines said.

“It wasn’t up to our quality standard and we decided to cancel it. It’s no longer in development. That wasn’t an easy decision, but it’s one that won’t surprise many folks given that we hadn’t been talking about it.

“Human Head Studios is no longer working on. It’s a franchise we still believe we can do something with — we just need to see what that something is.”

Prey 2’s troubled development cycle has been rumor mill fodder for a few years now. Last year, an internal email even hinted that the game was given to Arkane Austin and that all previous work by Human Head had been thrown out.

As Bethesda is pretty tight-lipped about these things, we’ll probably never learn the real reasons behind Prey 2’s demise.

Posted in News, PC, PS3, Xbox 360 | Tagged



Bethesda has released a BattleCry gameplay trailer for PAX Aus 2014

Bethesda is bringing a playable build of BattleCry to this weekend’s PAX Australia, but if you won’t be in attendance at the expo, the publisher has also released a brand new gameplay trailer of the game. Not only that, but Bethesda will also livestream their BattleCry panel, “Welcome to the WarZone,” tomorrow on Twitch. Just head over to twitch.tv/pax at 11:00 PM (Eastern Time) to take in all the steampunk-style shenanigans.

A beta for Bethesda’s free-to-play MOBA will be available sometime next year.

Posted in News, PC | Tagged

Nintendo Download: Stealth Inc 2, Costume Quest 2, a lot more

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Nintendo has got a slick and spooky update planned for the eShop this week.

The NES and Super NES adventures of Firebrand the Gargoyle will make their eShop debut this week as Gargoyle’s Quest II: The Demon Darkness was released for the 3DS and Wii U while Demon’s Crest is now available to download only on the Wii U. A terrifying Kirby game, Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land, has also been added to the Wii U eShop.

OK, so Kirby is never frightening. And neither is Double Fine’s Costume Quest 2. But the Halloween-y RPG is also new on the Wii U eShop this week. It’s joined by Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones, a Wii U-exclusive puzzle platformer from Curve Studios.

More than a dozen other titles were also added to the Nintendo eShop this week including Falling Skies for the Wii U, Duck Dynasty for the 3DS, and next Tuesday’s Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley (also for the 3DS). You can read all about these games (and many more) after the break. (more…)

Posted in 3DS, News, Wii U | Tagged