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Author: Nick Wheeler

Early Ninja – Unquestionably A Good Thing. Without A Shadow Of A Doubt. No Alternative Facts Here.

Early Ninja – Unquestionably A Good Thing. Without A Shadow Of A Doubt. No Alternative Facts Here.

The biggest problem faced by Early Access indie developers in 2017 is money. Weighed down by the heavy burden of having vast amounts of expendable cash, many indie developers are forced to slow and in some cases even stop the development of their games altogether.

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Well It’s About Time!

Well It’s About Time!

I love mods. Always have, always will. I get so happy when people take amazing games and make them even better, whether it’s new characters, new locations or complete overhauls I just can’t get enough of them  Modding is the very reason that I love the PC so much, despite the fact that it’s also the reason I have to re-install my games every few weeks after completely breaking them.

This week though, I’ve found something amazing. Something so completely fantastic you’ll never play Fallout 4 without it.

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No. This Is Wrong. All Wrong, On So Many Levels

No. This Is Wrong. All Wrong, On So Many Levels

Now I’ve got nothing against modding – I applaud when fans of PC gaming go that extra mile and tweak games that are often already good into something truly fantastic. New characters, new weapons, new locations – there’s almost nothing that modders can’t do given enough time and motivation. I’ve flown the Tardis across the wastelands of Fallout: New Vegas, I’ve driven the Batmobile through Liberty City and played GTA5 as a police officer. Modding is the very reason that I champion the PC as the platform of choice for gamers, and it’s usually the reason I have to re-install my games every few weeks after completely breaking them.

Sometimes however, I do have to draw the line. There are occasions when I’ve had to hold up my hand and say ‘no, you cannot mod that into a game. It’s sick, it’s offensive, and above all else, it’s just wrong.’

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Have At Ye, Mechanical Malingerer!

Have At Ye, Mechanical Malingerer!

I don’t ask for much in life, but if you gave me the option I’d probably ask for robots and swords. Probably some other stuff as well  (like world peace and an end to hunger), but mainly robots and swords.

Rather conveniently, Doborog Games’ Clone Drone in the Danger Zone offers both; a third person arena-combat game featuring human minds in robot bodies facing off against robot minds in equally robotic bodies.

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The Only Way Is Up

The Only Way Is Up

Sierra adventure games had many flaws – the unpredictable parser that required instructions to be written ‘just so’, the unexpected and seemingly unavoidable deaths, the genuinely insane puzzle logic and not to mention the fact that it was frequently possible to die on the very last screen of the game because you forgot to pick up some innocuous-looking item right at the start of the game.

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Hitman’s Elusive Targets Are All Wrong, And Here’s Why.

Hitman’s Elusive Targets Are All Wrong, And Here’s Why.

I was actually quite late to jump on the Hitman bandwagon. The new one, that is. I’ve played and loved all previous installments of the series, but the news that Hitman 6 (or Hitman(TM) as it insists on being known) would be episodic was enough to put me off picking it up at launch. A few months later down the line and the positive reception of the first two of its sprawling open levels and multiple approaches was enough for me to take the plunge.

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Sanctus Vidi Vinculum

Sanctus Vidi Vinculum

I’m not entirely sure who it was that first coined the term ‘Holy Chainsaw’ – it was either my brother or one of his friends, crammed into the spare bedroom of my parent’s house, huddled around my father’s work computer which contained national secrets, government documents and for some reason a shareware copy of Doom.

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Oh Joy, I’m Scared Again

Oh Joy, I’m Scared Again

 

I think Chris might have a point here. To be honest, the reason I generally play horror games is that sports and racing games scare me to death – I haven’t managed to face a football game since Sensible Soccer, whereas any game featuring words like ‘suspension’, ‘lap times’ or ‘drift’ send me searching desperately for a locker to hide in until they go away.

That’s not to say I consider myself brave or manly for playing horror games. No, I tend to play them for short bursts of time, mostly spent running away from things or jumping at shadows, before quickly alt-tabbing to desktop and vowing never to play them again. However, despite my rather unusual phobia towards horrifying things in the dark that want to kill me, my love-hate relationship with horror games continues.

Just for a change, this week I’ve been sent a trailer for a game that appears to present a calming alternative that won’t completely shatter my nerves. Instead of taking place in a terrifying, procedurally generated location shrouded in darkness, featuring horrific Lovecraftian monsters and all manner of soul-destroying terrors, Phantasmal instead looks like a cheerfully friendly game set on the rainbow hills of Happy Chocolate Land, where nothing bad ever, ever happens.

At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

Promising procedurally generated levels similar to those that kept me terrified at Monstrum for well over a year, and insanity systems that sound taken straight from Call of Cthulhu, I’m excited to dive into this one on its release on April 14th.

Actually no, I’m terrified to try it, but I’ll play it anyway because I’m a bit weird like that.

Hunting The Hunter – The Rake

Hunting The Hunter – The Rake

Sitting in the dim interior of my camper van, I stare intently at a low resolution monitor. On the bright screen before me, a remote feed transmits live infra-red images from cameras placed deep in the forest outside. I sit silently, impatiently flicking between the remote feeds, occasionally pausing to look up from the monitor and stare out of the windows of the camper van, listening intently to the whispers of the wind and creaking of the nearby trees.

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Daleks In the Mojave

Daleks In the Mojave

Back in 2013, I wrote about Fallout: Who Vegas – a small but polished mod that added a rather innocuous-looking blue police box to the Mojave wastes of Fallout: New Vegas. Inside the police box lay a massively detailed and functional rendition of the Tardis, pulled straight from the British institution that is Doctor Who.

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Hitman Footage Shows Off Very Little Man Hitting

Hitman Footage Shows Off Very Little Man Hitting

Since an overall sense of disappointment with Hitman: Absolution, (a game I’ll be honest, I actually quite liked) fans have been pretty vocal about what they wanted from the next iteration of the Hitman franchise. Large, living-world levels, a freedom to choose your approach and a selection of ways in which to bring about your targets departure.

In short, they wanted another Hitman: Blood Money.

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Onto the Land – A GTA V Wildlife Documentary

Onto the Land – A GTA V Wildlife Documentary

Being one of the most trend-setting gamers around, I’ve always got my eye out for the newest and most unknown titles. This month I’ve been trying out something called Grand Theft Auto 5.

For those of you that don’t know, Grand Theft Auto 5 is an impressive open world game in which you travel the fictional state of San Andreas with camera-phone in hand, taking pictures of the fascinating wildlife and interesting scenery. Occasionally you’ll run into mostly unpleasant characters who will try to encourage you to perform rather unpleasant and often unlawful acts, but otherwise you’re free to explore the land and oceans in relative peace.

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