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Found 9 results

  1. Once the tutorial is complete the rest of the menu is opened and you are free to enjoy all of the games modes. Campaign, Zombie Survival, Wave Survival, Gladiator matches, Base matches, Death matches, even a league of legends like Space Defense League. The graphics are good for an indie title and the sound is excellent, but what really sets this game apart is the story and universe it creates. With a wonderful sense of humor I haven’t felt since the heyday of Sierra’s games Space Quest and King’s Quest, Ring Runner brings you in and doesn't let up until the nitros soaked thrill ride is over. Gameplay can be executed though mouse and keyboard or gamepad. While ship movement does come with a steeper learning curve than most shoot-em ups, it has an even deeper payoff once mastered. The companion novel that can be found on Amazon showcases the rich history and background this new mythos has to offer. Well-crafted and nicely setting the stage for a budding franchise, Derelict Dreams is that rare engaging story you get lost in, and then suddenly realize its 2 A.M. Even if you’re not prone to indie games, this is the kind of franchise you want to get into on the ground floor and ride as far as it goes.
  2. MrsBadExample

    [Review] - Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs

    I’ll be honest. Not well. I went into this game with the expectations not of the game surpassing the original Amnesia, but at least holding the same ground; the same terror, the same unsettling feel. Expecting too much would have just been letting myself down from the get-go, it's a formula for failure; but it's certainly fair enough to expect the game to be at least as successful as it's predecessor. Without divulging too much of the storyline, it's difficult to explain exactly where A:AMfP went wrong. The first Amnesia was rich in story, giving a fairly detailed history of Daniel's journey prior to Brennenburg, his travels to Brennenburg itself, then what transpired within the castle. Amnesia is about rediscovering everything Daniel had done, and his attempts to atone for his perceived sins. Well, this is normal. A:AMfP, while having a fantastically disturbing storyline, falls short on exposition and really drawing you in. They kind of briefly touch on Oswald Mandus's history, skipping here and there, and the Machine is never really EXPLAINED in all it's glory. Which is a shame, because it is truly a glorious Machine. But more importantly, the entire tone of the story has changed. While this may be intentional or not, and the Dark Descent invoked terror and sometimes disgust at the actions performed by both Alexander and Daniel, A:AMfP caused me just to feel.. well.. sad. I sympathized with my attackers, and began to loathe my own character. Again, this may have been intentional; but it was not exactly what I was expecting. Regarding your attackers, however, is probably the most disappointing portion. They're beautifully rendered - no doubt - but lacking the fear factor that the Grunt and the Brute did. Why? A plethora of factors reigns in here. For starters, A:AMfP did away with the insanity effect, something I think was an extremely poor decision. Sure, Mandus may have been batshit insane to begin with, but technically so was Daniel by that point. The amount of times I was clearly able to see the 'monster' coming after me really ruined the fear of the unknown, and the complete lack of 'panic music' also took away. Yeah, that electric shredding guitar could get annoying in the Dark Descent sometimes, but it also made you absolutely panic as you knew that one of the monsters was hot on your tail. Instead here, you just have a pig squealing maniacally as it chases you (or doesn't, as I found out) and that's pretty much about it. To boot, the AI is godawfully stupid. The Dark Descent didn't boast any sort of higher processing AI for certain, but I was hoping they'd at least improve upon it for A:AMfP. Not only did they seem to not add to it, but they also seemed to detract. I was able to slip around pigmen undetected in the weirdest situations, and as long as I had my lantern away, I could pretty much shove my face in theirs. My first patrol encounter I was terrified, until I realized how slow and utterly stupid they were. It became more of route memorization instead of a "oh god don't let it get me" moment. And while the models again, were lovely, they utilized them too much. Sounds odd, I know. But unfortunately it’s true. Don’t worry about missing the pigman early in the game – you’ll be seeing them a lot further on. I mean, a lot. It’ll eventually become sort of boring, and he’ll just become a mobile surveillance camera that can stab you. It was nice to see them up close, but that’s something that detracts from the scares, not adds to them. The Grunt and Brute were even kind of silly in their own right once you finally knew what they looked like, but the insanity blur and consistent darkness prevented you from seeing them fully. You remained scared. Dan Pinchbeck stated in his interviews over a year ago [courtesy Gamasutra]: ... ... Reading back on those, I'm surprised. While the experience was fresh, and definitely beautiful, there was absolutely no real reason to explore. Why? Because of the lack of inventory management and item collection. No lamp oil to grab, no tinderboxes to utilize. That sounds silly to some I'm sure (and a lot of people are just avid explorers) but having a lantern that never dies out, that flickers at the slightest hint of danger - completely removes the entire aspect of SURVIVAL horror. Instead, I felt like I was being told a scary story, and I was being yanked through a path semi-reluctantly. Some of the frustration that lead to being lost in the dungeons of Brennenburg was not knowing if you got all the items, or even the correct items – and that was both a good and bad thing. Sure, it pissed you off, but it got you actively spending time in the game SEARCHING for things. No stone left unturned, you generally tore apart every room to see if there was a glowing goodie in it. Items would begin to cause fear due to the high number of trigger events, and taking all of that away lead to a lot of disappointment. Look at all this shit I can't interact with! I'M SO EXCITED. And unfortunately, this leads to yet another issue. Lack of object interactivity. This was probably my major complaint, as weird as that sounds. Amnesia: TDD was great because you COULD have a rage moment and chuck a potato sack across the room, or try and protect yourself against a monster with a broom or a hammer (poorly advised, but people still did it anyway). I do realize that item stacking could cause game-breaking problems, but people set out to break the game will find ways anyway, so removing those things really made no sense to me. I enjoy playing a lot of Amnesia mods, and utilize the barrel trick; any large object works, really; you hold it up in front of the monster, and it can no longer “see” you, and as long as you don’t move, you can generally avoid an encounter. A problem, yes. Fixable? Yes. But not by removing your interaction with the world. Wow, I can touch a lamp! Oo, I can throw a chair? But I can’t shuffle these boxes, or pick up this book, or smash a bottle against the wall in frustration. Giant locks across cupboards and doors just reminded you how little you really could do. The last negative I’ll touch upon is simply the ending. While I won’t spoil it for anyone, I will state that you get no choice. While the choices in the first Amnesia were fairly minute, you still had a CHOICE. You could let Alexander get away and be consumed by the Shadow, kill Alexander and emerge victorious from Brennenburg, or chuck Agrippa’s chatty head into the portal and help him get back to a realm he was better fit for (effectively killing Alexander anyway). All three endings had minor differences, and while not the same epic buildup as A:AmfP’s (the buildup to the ending is absolutely magnificent, save the odd choice of … erm... Pig Daddy?) you still felt satisfied that you could MAKE that choice. A:AMfP goes “lol nope” and forces their predetermined ending upon you. Unless there’s another path you can divert to (and I screwed around on a previous save 30 minutes prior, and even sat before the final climax for 5 minutes to see if waiting around made a difference) then that’s it. And it’s disappointing. And it makes no flipping sense. They missed so many opportunities, and I was so disheartened by it. Now that I’ve complained a ton, let’s get onto the good stuff! Because there IS good stuff. The soundtrack to this game is spectacular. The singing is beautiful and haunting, and the ambience is fantastic. I also couldn’t praise the voice actors more, for being fairly engaging for a character you play. Mandus himself was enjoyable to listen to, and I enjoyed hearing his bit pieces. While I complained about the lack of interactivity, I will say that the world as a whole was absolutely beautiful. It was exciting to be able to go outside for once, and once you delve into the Machine, it visually gets more and more interesting. By the time you hit the end of the game, your eyes are feasting on delicious candy and wind up craving more. Disturbing candy, sure, but man is it good. I would stop and look around to just enjoy the environment from time to time, when I was sure I wasn’t being chased or otherwise. That, to me, is a great thing to experience. I had to provide at least one mildly disturbing image. And it's only mild because the camera's turned. While I did not feel the same terror and horror as the first Amnesia, there were a few very good scares in there. I’m not saying this isn’t a scary game. You do get frightened every now and again, and you do have to be stealthy and keep your wits about you. It’s a different sort of scared; less horror scared, and more stealth game scared. You don’t want the security to find you – but it doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable. One of my favourite scares involves the Bilge level, and I’m sure many of you will find out why. It’s subtle, and one that’ll only affect previous Amnesia players. The storyline, yes, I did complain about it up above a bit, was a great concept. There’s very minor twists that are hinted at, and you have a notion of what’s going on – so when it’s revealed there’s a great amount of satisfaction in the discovery. Then you begin tying together the beginning of the story to where you’re at, realizing things you saw earlier in the game have a connection to what you’re seeing now; things that are so disturbing and messed up, if you’re anything like me you become giddy. I think the entire last hour of the game I kept saying “This is so messed up! This is so disgusting! THIS IS AWESOME!”. While the storytelling wasn’t as strong, or maybe as entrenched, coming up with your own theories, or even trying to flesh it out yourself can be satisfying in your own right. I was perturbed that they didn’t touch on things, but who knows? Maybe an expansion will come out? I will say, Mandus had some fantastic notes written and scattered among the world. Right before the end, I went back and re-read ALL of them. While reading them during the game, some of it made sense, by the time you hit the very end, it all clicks together and every single note you go “Ah HAH! That’s what he meant by that!”. I didn’t mind the notes being vague so much as the story as a whole, and it’s always good to leave an active imagination up to imagine the most horrific of things. Overall, Amnesia will be a good game for people who aren't thoroughly attached to the franchise. It's a solid horror story with beautiful design, gorgeous music and lovely voice acting. It will definitely entertain, and is well worth the $20. If it were more than that, I'd have to say "ehhhh", however $20 is a perfect price point for this. It seems like an overhauled expansion pack to say the least of it, and I enjoyed the time I did spend playing it. Die hard Amnesia fans may be disappointed, as I was, but for overall just playability - it's still pretty fun.
  3. Title: Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs Developer: The Chinese Room / Frictional Games Publisher: Frictional Games Genre: First-person Horror Adventure Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux Release Date: September 10, 2013 Price: $19.99 (USD) Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs has extremely big shoes to fill. The original, Amnesia: The Dark Descent has been heralded as one of the scariest games to date, spawning thousands of Let's Plays, reaction videos, and hilarious stories. Frictional Games did a fantastic job with a small team, a limited budget, and an incredibly large imagination. But how did A:AMfP fare? I’ll be honest. Not well. I went into this game with the expectations not of the game surpassing the original Amnesia, but at least holding the same ground; the same terror, the same unsettling feel. Expecting too much would have just been letting myself down from the get-go, it's a formula for failure; but it's certainly fair enough to expect the game to be at least as successful as it's predecessor. Without divulging too much of the storyline, it's difficult to explain exactly where A:AMfP went wrong. The first Amnesia was rich in story, giving a fairly detailed history of Daniel's journey prior to Brennenburg, his travels to Brennenburg itself, then what transpired within the castle. Amnesia is about rediscovering everything Daniel had done, and his attempts to atone for his perceived sins. Well, this is normal. A:AMfP, while having a fantastically disturbing storyline, falls short on exposition and really drawing you in. They kind of briefly touch on Oswald Mandus's history, skipping here and there, and the Machine is never really EXPLAINED in all it's glory. Which is a shame, because it is truly a glorious Machine. But more importantly, the entire tone of the story has changed. While this may be intentional or not, and the Dark Descent invoked terror and sometimes disgust at the actions performed by both Alexander and Daniel, A:AMfP caused me just to feel.. well.. sad. I sympathized with my attackers, and began to loathe my own character. Again, this may have been intentional; but it was not exactly what I was expecting. Regarding your attackers, however, is probably the most disappointing portion. They're beautifully rendered - no doubt - but lacking the fear factor that the Grunt and the Brute did. Why? A plethora of factors reigns in here. For starters, A:AMfP did away with the insanity effect, something I think was an extremely poor decision. Sure, Mandus may have been batshit insane to begin with, but technically so was Daniel by that point. The amount of times I was clearly able to see the 'monster' coming after me really ruined the fear of the unknown, and the complete lack of 'panic music' also took away. Yeah, that electric shredding guitar could get annoying in the Dark Descent sometimes, but it also made you absolutely panic as you knew that one of the monsters was hot on your tail. Instead here, you just have a pig squealing maniacally as it chases you (or doesn't, as I found out) and that's pretty much about it. To boot, the AI is godawfully stupid. The Dark Descent didn't boast any sort of higher processing AI for certain, but I was hoping they'd at least improve upon it for A:AMfP. Not only did they seem to not add to it, but they also seemed to detract. I was able to slip around pigmen undetected in the weirdest situations, and as long as I had my lantern away, I could pretty much shove my face in theirs. My first patrol encounter I was terrified, until I realized how slow and utterly stupid they were. It became more of route memorization instead of a "oh god don't let it get me" moment. And while the models again, were lovely, they utilized them too much. Sounds odd, I know. But unfortunately it’s true. Don’t worry about missing the pigman early in the game – you’ll be seeing them a lot further on. I mean, a lot. It’ll eventually become sort of boring, and he’ll just become a mobile surveillance camera that can stab you. It was nice to see them up close, but that’s something that detracts from the scares, not adds to them. The Grunt and Brute were even kind of silly in their own right once you finally knew what they looked like, but the insanity blur and consistent darkness prevented you from seeing them fully. You remained scared. Dan Pinchbeck stated in his interviews over a year ago [courtesy Gamasutra]: ... ... Reading back on those, I'm surprised. While the experience was fresh, and definitely beautiful, there was absolutely no real reason to explore. Why? Because of the lack of inventory management and item collection. No lamp oil to grab, no tinderboxes to utilize. That sounds silly to some I'm sure (and a lot of people are just avid explorers) but having a lantern that never dies out, that flickers at the slightest hint of danger - completely removes the entire aspect of SURVIVAL horror. Instead, I felt like I was being told a scary story, and I was being yanked through a path semi-reluctantly. Some of the frustration that lead to being lost in the dungeons of Brennenburg was not knowing if you got all the items, or even the correct items – and that was both a good and bad thing. Sure, it pissed you off, but it got you actively spending time in the game SEARCHING for things. No stone left unturned, you generally tore apart every room to see if there was a glowing goodie in it. Items would begin to cause fear due to the high number of trigger events, and taking all of that away lead to a lot of disappointment. Look at all this shit I can't interact with! I'M SO EXCITED. And unfortunately, this leads to yet another issue. Lack of object interactivity. This was probably my major complaint, as weird as that sounds. Amnesia: TDD was great because you COULD have a rage moment and chuck a potato sack across the room, or try and protect yourself against a monster with a broom or a hammer (poorly advised, but people still did it anyway). I do realize that item stacking could cause game-breaking problems, but people set out to break the game will find ways anyway, so removing those things really made no sense to me. I enjoy playing a lot of Amnesia mods, and utilize the barrel trick; any large object works, really; you hold it up in front of the monster, and it can no longer “see” you, and as long as you don’t move, you can generally avoid an encounter. A problem, yes. Fixable? Yes. But not by removing your interaction with the world. Wow, I can touch a lamp! Oo, I can throw a chair? But I can’t shuffle these boxes, or pick up this book, or smash a bottle against the wall in frustration. Giant locks across cupboards and doors just reminded you how little you really could do. The last negative I’ll touch upon is simply the ending. While I won’t spoil it for anyone, I will state that you get no choice. While the choices in the first Amnesia were fairly minute, you still had a CHOICE. You could let Alexander get away and be consumed by the Shadow, kill Alexander and emerge victorious from Brennenburg, or chuck Agrippa’s chatty head into the portal and help him get back to a realm he was better fit for (effectively killing Alexander anyway). All three endings had minor differences, and while not the same epic buildup as A:AmfP’s (the buildup to the ending is absolutely magnificent, save the odd choice of … erm... Pig Daddy?) you still felt satisfied that you could MAKE that choice. A:AMfP goes “lol nope” and forces their predetermined ending upon you. Unless there’s another path you can divert to (and I screwed around on a previous save 30 minutes prior, and even sat before the final climax for 5 minutes to see if waiting around made a difference) then that’s it. And it’s disappointing. And it makes no flipping sense. They missed so many opportunities, and I was so disheartened by it. Now that I’ve complained a ton, let’s get onto the good stuff! Because there IS good stuff. The soundtrack to this game is spectacular. The singing is beautiful and haunting, and the ambience is fantastic. I also couldn’t praise the voice actors more, for being fairly engaging for a character you play. Mandus himself was enjoyable to listen to, and I enjoyed hearing his bit pieces. While I complained about the lack of interactivity, I will say that the world as a whole was absolutely beautiful. It was exciting to be able to go outside for once, and once you delve into the Machine, it visually gets more and more interesting. By the time you hit the end of the game, your eyes are feasting on delicious candy and wind up craving more. Disturbing candy, sure, but man is it good. I would stop and look around to just enjoy the environment from time to time, when I was sure I wasn’t being chased or otherwise. That, to me, is a great thing to experience. I had to provide at least one mildly disturbing image. And it's only mild because the camera's turned. While I did not feel the same terror and horror as the first Amnesia, there were a few very good scares in there. I’m not saying this isn’t a scary game. You do get frightened every now and again, and you do have to be stealthy and keep your wits about you. It’s a different sort of scared; less horror scared, and more stealth game scared. You don’t want the security to find you – but it doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable. One of my favourite scares involves the Bilge level, and I’m sure many of you will find out why. It’s subtle, and one that’ll only affect previous Amnesia players. The storyline, yes, I did complain about it up above a bit, was a great concept. There’s very minor twists that are hinted at, and you have a notion of what’s going on – so when it’s revealed there’s a great amount of satisfaction in the discovery. Then you begin tying together the beginning of the story to where you’re at, realizing things you saw earlier in the game have a connection to what you’re seeing now; things that are so disturbing and messed up, if you’re anything like me you become giddy. I think the entire last hour of the game I kept saying “This is so messed up! This is so disgusting! THIS IS AWESOME!”. While the storytelling wasn’t as strong, or maybe as entrenched, coming up with your own theories, or even trying to flesh it out yourself can be satisfying in your own right. I was perturbed that they didn’t touch on things, but who knows? Maybe an expansion will come out? I will say, Mandus had some fantastic notes written and scattered among the world. Right before the end, I went back and re-read ALL of them. While reading them during the game, some of it made sense, by the time you hit the very end, it all clicks together and every single note you go “Ah HAH! That’s what he meant by that!”. I didn’t mind the notes being vague so much as the story as a whole, and it’s always good to leave an active imagination up to imagine the most horrific of things. Overall, Amnesia will be a good game for people who aren't thoroughly attached to the franchise. It's a solid horror story with beautiful design, gorgeous music and lovely voice acting. It will definitely entertain, and is well worth the $20. If it were more than that, I'd have to say "ehhhh", however $20 is a perfect price point for this. It seems like an overhauled expansion pack to say the least of it, and I enjoyed the time I did spend playing it. Die hard Amnesia fans may be disappointed, as I was, but for overall just playability - it's still pretty fun. Click here to view the article
  4. spawn622

    [Review] - Dead Island Riptide

    As I said, I have never touched a Dead Island game before and I was worried I wouldn’t be the right person to review its follow-up, however after playing the game; I think my fears were unwarranted. While the game isn’t great, it’s not terrible by any means. The visceral feeling of dismembering zombies with all sorts of weapons really works, especially in co-op. There are tons of quests, environments, weapons, and zombie types to keep things fresh throughout. Also, the character progression system is much like other games of the type and gives you the “One More Level” feeling that any good game should. You will find yourself up to the wee hours of the morning before you know it. The game features, as expected, 4 player co-op and this is where the game really shines. I was only able to test it out with 2 players, but what I can imagine 4 players would only enhance the experience greatly. The character classes complement each other so well. I chose Sam B. and my co-op partner was Xian. Where Xian would work to sneak behind the zombies to use her bladed weapons with sneak attacks, I would face them head on and bash their heads in with mainly blunt weapons. The co-op is also great because no matter your level, you will always be fighting zombies at your same level. While your partner, who may be at a lower/higher level than you, will be fighting zombies at their same level. I’ve read this was patched in to the original game later and really is a good feature. This allows you to play with your buddies and keeps you from managing multiple characters at various levels. Now, you may have noticed I have yet to mention anything about the story in Dead Island Riptide. This is for good reason and brings me to my first issue with the game. The story is useless here and very much seems like an afterthought. Almost as if the game and environment were created and the story was tacked on later. Picking up where the first game left off and moving the survivors (And a new survivor apparently) to a new island full of rampaging zombies just isn’t inventive or taking any type of story leap. The cut scenes move the story along fairly well. Voice acting is mixed here. Some are quite good, others are just awful. A useless story isn’t always a bad thing though. In this case, strategizing before heading out on a mission can be done at almost any time without worrying about missing anything in a cut scene or during dialogue. Speaking of cut scenes, this brings me to my next semi-gripe with the game. It’s not pretty. Screen tearing, texture pop in/out, frame drop issues, etc all plague the game. It doesn’t ever become a real problem, but in today’s gaming world, these things shouldn’t ever be an issue. Reports online show that the PS3 shows the most problems and the PC is the most solid overall. Playing on the Xbox 360 did show some of these issues but I’ve not run in to anything game breaking. Being an RPG, Riptide succeeds in keeping you busy. Story missions, side quests, team missions, and just general exploration keeps you from ever getting bored while on the island. All these things keep the game fun and help you to ignore its shortcomings. I think if these weren’t there the game would fare much worse. The only stumble the game makes in this area is not giving you an open world to explore after you complete the game. Be sure to get your missions done prior to making the push to the end. Overall Dead Island Riptide is a solid RPG. Never playing the first game doesn’t pose any problems and honestly may help some to overlook some of the issues. Graphically the game isn’t a stunner, which is extremely disappointing in today’s gaming climate. Also, the story really needs to be looked at for any more sequels. Hopefully it can be salvaged down the line. However, the game play actually saves the day. Dismembering zombies with buddies and having an overflowing quest log of things to do is great fun. In summation, Dead Island Riptide is a decent game. If you’re looking for something fun to play with friends or are a fan of the first game, I’d recommend picking this one up.
  5. Developed by: Techland Published by: Deep Silver Distributed by: Square Enix Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PS3 Release Date: April 23, 2013 Available on Steam for $39.99 Physical Copy Available for $49.99 Dead Island Riptide is the follow up to the 2011 game Dead Island. The original was fairly well received and sold very well. That said I’ve never touched the original game. Will this be a hindrance or a blessing for Riptide? Read on and find out if I had as much fun bashing zombies around as most or if I put down my machete and walked away disappointed. As I said, I have never touched a Dead Island game before and I was worried I wouldn’t be the right person to review its follow-up, however after playing the game; I think my fears were unwarranted. While the game isn’t great, it’s not terrible by any means. The visceral feeling of dismembering zombies with all sorts of weapons really works, especially in co-op. There are tons of quests, environments, weapons, and zombie types to keep things fresh throughout. Also, the character progression system is much like other games of the type and gives you the “One More Level” feeling that any good game should. You will find yourself up to the wee hours of the morning before you know it. The game features, as expected, 4 player co-op and this is where the game really shines. I was only able to test it out with 2 players, but what I can imagine 4 players would only enhance the experience greatly. The character classes complement each other so well. I chose Sam B. and my co-op partner was Xian. Where Xian would work to sneak behind the zombies to use her bladed weapons with sneak attacks, I would face them head on and bash their heads in with mainly blunt weapons. The co-op is also great because no matter your level, you will always be fighting zombies at your same level. While your partner, who may be at a lower/higher level than you, will be fighting zombies at their same level. I’ve read this was patched in to the original game later and really is a good feature. This allows you to play with your buddies and keeps you from managing multiple characters at various levels. Now, you may have noticed I have yet to mention anything about the story in Dead Island Riptide. This is for good reason and brings me to my first issue with the game. The story is useless here and very much seems like an afterthought. Almost as if the game and environment were created and the story was tacked on later. Picking up where the first game left off and moving the survivors (And a new survivor apparently) to a new island full of rampaging zombies just isn’t inventive or taking any type of story leap. The cut scenes move the story along fairly well. Voice acting is mixed here. Some are quite good, others are just awful. A useless story isn’t always a bad thing though. In this case, strategizing before heading out on a mission can be done at almost any time without worrying about missing anything in a cut scene or during dialogue. Speaking of cut scenes, this brings me to my next semi-gripe with the game. It’s not pretty. Screen tearing, texture pop in/out, frame drop issues, etc all plague the game. It doesn’t ever become a real problem, but in today’s gaming world, these things shouldn’t ever be an issue. Reports online show that the PS3 shows the most problems and the PC is the most solid overall. Playing on the Xbox 360 did show some of these issues but I’ve not run in to anything game breaking. Being an RPG, Riptide succeeds in keeping you busy. Story missions, side quests, team missions, and just general exploration keeps you from ever getting bored while on the island. All these things keep the game fun and help you to ignore its shortcomings. I think if these weren’t there the game would fare much worse. The only stumble the game makes in this area is not giving you an open world to explore after you complete the game. Be sure to get your missions done prior to making the push to the end. Overall Dead Island Riptide is a solid RPG. Never playing the first game doesn’t pose any problems and honestly may help some to overlook some of the issues. Graphically the game isn’t a stunner, which is extremely disappointing in today’s gaming climate. Also, the story really needs to be looked at for any more sequels. Hopefully it can be salvaged down the line. However, the game play actually saves the day. Dismembering zombies with buddies and having an overflowing quest log of things to do is great fun. In summation, Dead Island Riptide is a decent game. If you’re looking for something fun to play with friends or are a fan of the first game, I’d recommend picking this one up. Click here to view the article
  6. ThermoNukePanda

    [Review] - AirBuccaneers

    Developed by: LudoCraft Ltd. Published by: LudoCraft Ltd. Platforms: PC Release Date: Dec 5th, 2012 Available on Steam for $14.99 (3/25/13 - On sale today for $5.09 which is 66% off!!!) If last year you approached me to say you had an idea to create a game where you pilot hot air balloons which are loaded up with cannons, rockets and flamethrowers I would have to say my interest would have been piqued. Throw in persistent character leveling, hilarious taunts (you really have to hear these to believe them), ship boarding, round it all out with two opposing forces of vikings and pirates and I would have told you to shut up and take my money! Thanks to Steam's GreenLight service this is exactly what happened when gamers united to give LudoCraft Ltd the go to release their fantastic fantasy balloon battling title, AirBuccaneers.AirBuccaneers originally was conceived back in 2004 as a mod within Unreal Tournament III during Epic's "Make Something Unreal" contest. Now almost ten years later a new and improved standalone version has graced my PC's hard drive and I have to admit to you I'm completely hooked! There is just something so mind-bogglingly satisfying about taking to the skies in a hot air balloon of death and watching your enemies plummet to the ground in a fiery blaze after a hail of cannon fire. Original Unreal Tournament III screenshot. The game, while simple in premise, offers enough diversity to keep you occupied for a long time. Once you've selected your side, Viking or Buccaneer, you're thrown into a match and set off on your conquest to destroy your opponents and their ships. There really isn't any ground combat to speak of here, unless your enemies somehow manage to get close enough to your base to spawn camp you, so expect to spend practically all your time upon one of AirBuccaneer's four available ships.The fragile Kamikaze ship that explodes on impact. A balloon with no cannons who's pilot must maneuver through enemy cannon fire in order to bring down other balloons with a single blast. Generally piloted by a single player, although some brave souls may attempt to catch a ride with you leading usually to hilarious results.The single cannoned Cog ship. A small balloon usually reserved for two, helmsman and gunner.The mighty Battleship. This larger balloon, which I like to refer to as the "Party Boat", comes complete with a total of four cannons. A competent and complete crew can make this ship a force to be feared!The Flying Fortress. This huge floating island ship has three absolutely huge and devastating long range cannons. Unable to move unless using the "boost" ability, this ship is tricky to pilot and deadly when positioned properly. Yeah, I call it the "Party Boat" for a reason! AirBuccaneers is best played as a team game, and attempting to take on your enemies alone is almost always a recipe for doom (unless you're "that guy" who always takes the Kamikaze!). You'll need to coordinate with your team to make sure your balloon is manned properly. What good is your balloon if you don't have someone to fire the cannons as you fly? How are you going to keep your ship in the air unless you have a pal swinging his support staff (which I jokingly refer to as the "baby rattle") away to repair your hull? Those incoming cannonballs and air mines are going to put a hurt on you unless you have someone using their musket to knock them away! Feel like hopping off your balloon to attempt to board an enemy ship? Go for it! There are multiple roles to fill and they're all extremely important to your success.Thankfully the game rewards players with experience depending on the role you've been filling (Helmsman, Gunner, Support). Featuring a large skill tree that unlocks both Perks and Flaws as your fulfill your duties will keep you coming back again and again as well as encourage you to try your hand at each of the three roles. I really enjoyed this system of Perks and Flaws as it becomes a tradeoff of sorts for your abilities. Want to be able to pilot your balloon faster? Be prepared to take a Flaw also, like being a drunken sailor that erratically moves your balloon in various directions at the most random of times! It's a great idea and often times leads to hilarious results. More often than not my drunken Viking gets sucked into that damn maelstrom! I really only have two complaints about the game which are mostly minor detail stuff that hasn't really detracted from my experiences. The more major of the two is something I expected slightly considering this is an indie title. Occasionally they're just not many people playing the game. This makes choosing a server when you start something of a no-brainer and always going with the most populated one, although this tends to be a European one (Always Ireland it seems for me!). I haven't encountered really any lag so to speak that has hampered my gameplay, but it would be nice to have more options.The second complaint is the melee combat. Boarding enemy ships is something that absolutely without a doubt happen to you, and mastering the sword has been a problem for me. There isn't any hit detection feedback that I've noticed, like staggering your opponent or even being able to tell if you hit your foe or not. This leads to furious clicking of the mouse and fumbling around your ship. More times than not I get killed by this as I'm trying to pilot my balloon and I've learned that an enemy boarding my ship is a death sentence for me. For this reason I always try to keep my distance and rely on my ship's weaponry (although getting in close to unleash my flamethrowers is tempting!). AirBuccanneers is beautiful, hilarious, crazy and an incredible amount of fun for an indie game that is basically a rehash of a ten year old UTIII mod. It's not perfect, and no game is, but I'm going to continue to bark orders at my crewmates for many months to come! Speaking of barking orders..... FIX THE SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *screenshots rehosted from Google images*Click here to view the article
  7. ThermoNukePanda

    [Review] - AirBuccaneers

    AirBuccaneers originally was conceived back in 2004 as a mod within Unreal Tournament III during Epic's "Make Something Unreal" contest. Now almost ten years later a new and improved standalone version has graced my PC's hard drive and I have to admit to you I'm completely hooked! There is just something so mind-bogglingly satisfying about taking to the skies in a hot air balloon of death and watching your enemies plummet to the ground in a fiery blaze after a hail of cannon fire. Original Unreal Tournament III screenshot. The game, while simple in premise, offers enough diversity to keep you occupied for a long time. Once you've selected your side, Viking or Buccaneer, you're thrown into a match and set off on your conquest to destroy your opponents and their ships. There really isn't any ground combat to speak of here, unless your enemies somehow manage to get close enough to your base to spawn camp you, so expect to spend practically all your time upon one of AirBuccaneer's four available ships. The fragile Kamikaze ship that explodes on impact. A balloon with no cannons who's pilot must maneuver through enemy cannon fire in order to bring down other balloons with a single blast. Generally piloted by a single player, although some brave souls may attempt to catch a ride with you leading usually to hilarious results. The single cannoned Cog ship. A small balloon usually reserved for two, helmsman and gunner. The mighty Battleship. This larger balloon, which I like to refer to as the "Party Boat", comes complete with a total of four cannons. A competent and complete crew can make this ship a force to be feared! The Flying Fortress. This huge floating island ship has three absolutely huge and devastating long range cannons. Unable to move unless using the "boost" ability, this ship is tricky to pilot and deadly when positioned properly. Yeah, I call it the "Party Boat" for a reason! AirBuccaneers is best played as a team game, and attempting to take on your enemies alone is almost always a recipe for doom (unless you're "that guy" who always takes the Kamikaze!). You'll need to coordinate with your team to make sure your balloon is manned properly. What good is your balloon if you don't have someone to fire the cannons as you fly? How are you going to keep your ship in the air unless you have a pal swinging his support staff (which I jokingly refer to as the "baby rattle") away to repair your hull? Those incoming cannonballs and air mines are going to put a hurt on you unless you have someone using their musket to knock them away! Feel like hopping off your balloon to attempt to board an enemy ship? Go for it! There are multiple roles to fill and they're all extremely important to your success. Thankfully the game rewards players with experience depending on the role you've been filling (Helmsman, Gunner, Support). Featuring a large skill tree that unlocks both Perks and Flaws as your fulfill your duties will keep you coming back again and again as well as encourage you to try your hand at each of the three roles. I really enjoyed this system of Perks and Flaws as it becomes a tradeoff of sorts for your abilities. Want to be able to pilot your balloon faster? Be prepared to take a Flaw also, like being a drunken sailor that erratically moves your balloon in various directions at the most random of times! It's a great idea and often times leads to hilarious results. More often than not my drunken Viking gets sucked into that damn maelstrom! I really only have two complaints about the game which are mostly minor detail stuff that hasn't really detracted from my experiences. The more major of the two is something I expected slightly considering this is an indie title. Occasionally they're just not many people playing the game. This makes choosing a server when you start something of a no-brainer and always going with the most populated one, although this tends to be a European one (Always Ireland it seems for me!). I haven't encountered really any lag so to speak that has hampered my gameplay, but it would be nice to have more options. The second complaint is the melee combat. Boarding enemy ships is something that absolutely without a doubt happen to you, and mastering the sword has been a problem for me. There isn't any hit detection feedback that I've noticed, like staggering your opponent or even being able to tell if you hit your foe or not. This leads to furious clicking of the mouse and fumbling around your ship. More times than not I get killed by this as I'm trying to pilot my balloon and I've learned that an enemy boarding my ship is a death sentence for me. For this reason I always try to keep my distance and rely on my ship's weaponry (although getting in close to unleash my flamethrowers is tempting!). AirBuccanneers is beautiful, hilarious, crazy and an incredible amount of fun for an indie game that is basically a rehash of a ten year old UTIII mod. It's not perfect, and no game is, but I'm going to continue to bark orders at my crewmates for many months to come! Speaking of barking orders..... FIX THE SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *screenshots rehosted from Google images*
  8. PeeKnuckle

    The Showdown Effect

    Released today. Buy on Steam
  9. PeeKnuckle

    The Showdown Effect

    Released today. Buy on Steam Click here to view the article
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