Most Recent: Top Story

Interview: Pocket Mana on the Launch of My Uncle Merlin’s Kickstarter Campaign

Today, Pocket Mana launched a Kickstarter campaign for the company’s debut game, My Uncle Merlin, an interactive adventure for the PC about wizards in space. We caught up with Predrag Mladenovic (who composes stuff), Milan Andrejevic (who writes stuff), and Stefan Sladic (who draws stuff), to find out more about the game, and what had led them to crowdfund the project. (more…)

Posted in Features, Interviews, PC, Previews, Top Story |

Kickstart This! Ara of the Wanderers

After a trip to Amsterdam and an absence due to tonsillitis, Kickstart This is back with a bang…

OK, so I wrote this on Guy Fawkes Night, and that opener might just be funny to me. I blame the medication. I’ll shut up now…

Due to games being cancelled, there have been a few stalled attempts to write a new installment, and the one I finally chose has not even reached the 10% mark yet, but I’m hoping we can change that. So let’s go meet Ara of the Wanderers. (more…)

Posted in Features, PC, PS4, Top Story, Xbox One |

The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time #10: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

“The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time” is a statistical meta-analysis of 44 “Best Video Games of All Time” lists that were published between 1995 and 2016. Catch up on how we decided to sort the games and the rest of the Top 100 in the Introduction.

You can also help support the completion of this project through Patreon.

General William Tecumseh Sherman famously declared that “War is Hell” in a speech in 1880, though I think it’s safe to assume that more people are familiar with the anti-war protestations of a certain green Muppet from 1980’s The Empire Strikes Back. While this sentiment has existed in the public consciousness for hundreds of years, the basic structure of a game as a confrontation that pits the player against the CPU (or another player) makes armed conflict an ideal setting.

War might be Hell, but it has also been very good for Activision’s bottom line thanks to the Call of Duty franchise.

Publisher Activision and developer Infinity Ward quietly released the original Call of Duty in 2003, and its World War II setting was designed to compete directly with the popular Medal of Honor series. Not so coincidentally, the majority of Infinity Ward’s employees, including founders Jason West and Vince Zampella, had previously worked at 2015 Inc., the developer behind Medal of Honor: Allied Assault.

Call of Duty received a raft of good reviews, as well as several industry awards (“Game of the Year” at the DICE Awards and “Best Debut” at the GDC Awards). And due to its strong sales, Infinity Ward immediately went to work on an expansion and a full-fledged sequel, and Activision tasked Treyarch with producing several console-centric spinoffs. But to become a world-beating juggernaut, the franchise had to abandon its Greatest Generation roots and embrace a more modern sensibility in 2007’s Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. (more…)

Posted in Features, PC, PS3, PS4, SPBVGOAT, Top Story, Xbox 360, Xbox One | Tagged

SteamWorld Dig 2 Review: Groundbreaking

It’s hard to believe that four years have already passed since the original SteamWorld Dig first graced gaming systems. Image & Form’s platformer came out of left field and garnered attention and praise from gamers and critics alike (it was even in the running for the “‘Shoeless’ Joe Jackson Award” in our annual Golden Pixel Awards roundup). At the time, we couldn’t wait to return to the SteamWorld universe and see the characters “fleshed out” in a sequel, so-to-speak.

Instead, the next entry we got in the series was a spinoff, SteamWorld Heist. It was still set in the same universe as Dig, but Heist wasn’t a direct sequel, and took place much further in the future. Gameplay was also different, as Heist took on a turn-based strategy approach as opposed to Dig’s resource-collecting, mining, MetroidVania style. While fun in its own right, many wanted to see a return to SteamWorld Dig’s roots.

And almost half a decade later, we got our wish. (more…)

Posted in PC, PS4, Reviews, Switch, Top Story, Vita | Tagged


The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time #66: Mega Man 2

“The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time” is a statistical meta-analysis of 44 “Best Video Games of All Time” lists that were published between 1995 and 2016. Catch up on how we decided to sort the games and the rest of the Top 100 in the Introduction.

You can also help support the completion of this project through Patreon.

The first Mega Man game is a bit of an odd duck, which has become even more pronounced as the years go by. The graphics are simplistic, the sound is tinny, there’s only six Robot Masters instead of the traditional eight, and there’s even a score counter (a feature that was jettisoned from the dozens of sequels that followed). There’s just a smoothness to subsequent games in the franchise that Capcom had yet to master with the first entry.

But like most Mega Man fans, I only learned all this after the fact. At the time, whatever memories I have of the first game were formed by guide writers who described it as an unfairly difficult game, old episodes of Captain N, and the fact that none of the local rental outlets owned a copy (unsurprisingly, Lee Trevino’s Fighting Golf was always available).

I finally got the chance to see what all the fuss was about with Mega Man 2, which was also the first game in the Mega Man franchise to be spearheaded by Capcom’s Keiji Inafune. With an expanded role in the sequel’s development, Inafune became known as the “Father” of Mega Man to plenty of fans, and codified many of the traditions and patterns the series is known for. (more…)

Posted in 3DS, Features, Mobile, PC, PS2, PS4, Retro, SPBVGOAT, Top Story, Wii, Wii U, Xbox One | Tagged

Distrust Review: Go a Little Mad in the Cold

Distrust is a game about survival in the harshest of climates. The game opens with a mysterious bright light and a helicopter crash. From there, you are stranded in an unforgiving Arctic environment with limited supplies and an ever-growing sense of dread. You take control of two survivors trying to make their way to the safety of an abandoned scientific research facility, and along the way you have to make harsh decisions that will lead to your success… or doom. (more…)

Posted in PC, Reviews, Top Story | Tagged

Content Crash #13: Why Aren’t Developers More Open With Fans?

Hey everyone! Welcome to the Content Crash podcast. With me, as always, is Keno Eastmond.

This week I wanted to focus on a designer/programmer who went on Twitter to say why developers aren’t more candid and open with the game development cycle. The underlying theme of the thread was that gamer culture is so toxic that being candid in public is dangerous.

You can subscribe to the Content Crash podcast on YouTube or SoundCloud.

Posted in Podcast, Top Story |

Kickstart This! The Devil’s Eight and Village Monsters

Games are like any form of art or entertainment… you need to be in theright mood to play them (or at least to enjoy them).

Sometimes I want a game that totally surprises me, bringing me something completely unusual and off the rails that makes me sit up and say “WOW” in big shiny letters. Other times, I want something familiar, a genre that I can soak in like a warm color-bombed bath and a game that just does everything perfectly. This game will usually offer an experience I find familiar, but with something slightly different to keep it fresh, and with lots of little touches that let me know the game designer cared enough to include them.

Thankfully, in the Kickstarter realm, the world is your oyster, and you can usually find both. There are now over 200 games on Steam that started life as a Kickstarter project… some that are wacky and way out there, while others deliver the essentials with a smile.

Which brings us nicely to The Devil’s Eight and Village Monsters(more…)

Posted in Features, PC, Top Story |