Saturday, 31 August 2013

Red Flag!: Frags With Retro Sensibilities

Red Flag! by Bad Mouse Digital Art contains almost every feature you would expect to find in a competitive multi player FPS like Call of Duty, from varied game modes like Team Deathmatch and Domination to multiple weapons with different characteristics and usefulness, yet it is a retro style top down shooter. There's no official release date for the final game but currently another open beta test is live and you too can enjoy it for free, if only the following gameplay trailer interests you enough to download the Windows version that is on offer.

Bugbear's Next Game Needs You

Bugbear Entertainment, known for exclusively developing racing games, just revealed its next project. With the name Next Car Game it appears simple, to the point and resembles a successor of their rather popular FlatOut series, yet has its own identity that the limited media available demonstrate through the unique battered vehicles and the impressive crashes that total them. The game is planned to release in the Spring of 2014 for Windows (with the possibility of future console versions) but the developers currently wish to utilize their own form of crowd funding via preorders, which they hope will provide the necessary budget and in return offer supporters lower prices starting from $25 (about 19€), access to early versions and the possibility to affect the project's direction through their comments and feedback.

Sky Nations: The Demo

Sky Nations is a multi player game for Windows that resembles Minecraft yet offers different gameplay. It takes place on a world comprised of floating islands and includes many features, from weapons you'd expect to see in an FPS to the creation of cosmetic items. The focus that also sets it apart however is the ability to construct airships, used for exploration and impressive battles. Despite the early development phase the game's popularity is on the rise and now everyone can find out why, as the new demo version locks away many of its features but still offers a good sample of the experience. What are you waiting for?

GODUS Coming to Steam Early Access

GODUS is a "God game" by 22Cans and famous creator Peter Molyneux. Funded via Kickstarter, it succeeds classics like Populous and at the same time moves forward and offers an (if you desire it) online experience where many players will be able to cooperate or compete while developing their civilizations. Even though the game will be released for Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS and Android, Windows and Mac owners will be the first to play it through Steam Early Access which starting from the 13th of September will offer an early beta version (naturally with every subsequent update until the full release) for 18,99€. For now make the wait easier, or perhaps harder, by watching the announcement trailer after the jump.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Pulsar: Lost Colony, a Promising Starship Simulator

Update: The developers of Pulsar: Lost Colony on a weekly basis upload development progress videos. I won't be writing about all of them but today's footage deserves a mention as it includes (starting from roughly three minutes in) the first sample of planet surface exploration. Despite the early development phase it already looks fairly solid and therefor makes a lot of promises about the game's future.

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Rayman Legends Gets Launch Trailer

The next part of this beloved series of platform games will be released really soon, which in this case means the end of this very month for most of the platforms it will become available on. Ubisoft, in order to celebrate this event, has published a new trailer showcasing Rayman Legends and its impressive 2D visuals at their best. Enjoy it.

Always Sometimes Monsters: A Different RPG

Always Sometimes Monsters is a game whose creators focus on the presentation of a complex storyline, where relationships and emotional bonds replace battles and adventures. Its plot will set you on the way to reclaiming a lost love, while many different possibilities will be enabled by your own decisions as well as the choices regarding the sex, race and sexual preferences of your character. Watch the new trailer for an idea of what you can expect and, if you wish, pre-order the game which will be released in the spring of 2014 for $9,99 (about 7,50€).

In Torment: The Case of the Drawing Girl Released

In Torment: The Case of the Drawing Girl is a short yet fairly tough and inventive adventure that has just been released for Windows as free software. When starting, you will only know that there's a girl under shock due to an unknown event she has apparently forgotten all about.

By examining her strange drawings, which you're able to enter, and conversing with her you will have to discover the exact circumstances and the persons involved, as well as her own identity. Another element that sets the game apart is the ability to choose from three different settings that cause the story and images to be more or less disturbing. It certainly deserves a try but before that, watch the teaser.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Super Trench Attack Impressions

The just released Super Trench Attack is a top down shooter that was almost single-handedly  developed within a span of five years  by one Paul Stephen-Davis. Inspired by the first world war yet with a hefty dose of humour it puts you in the shoes of a new recruit who, due to a staff shortage after the successful invasion of the enemy, will need to complete the most dangerous missions while facing hordes of soldiers and... monkeys. Indeed.

Neverending Nightmares' Sketchy Horrors

Update: The Kickstarter funding campaign of this project is now live with a not too modest goal of $99.000. The lowest tiers that reward supporters with the game are $10 (about 7,50€) for 750 early birds and $15 (about 11,25€) for everyone else, with many more higher tiers providing additional goodies like early alpha and beta access. The game is being developed for Windows, Mac, Linux and Oura while a demo is already available for Windows.

Original report: On the heels of the financial failure that was 24 Caret Games' unique shooter Retro/Grade, Matt Gilgenbach who suffers from OCD and depression has decided to channel all that negative energy into a new and very different game, Neverending Nightmares. With only a teaser available very little is known about the game other than the simple and surprisingly effective disturbing imagery. Acknowledging past mistakes and the current situation Matt and Infinitap Games have plans for a much needed Kickstarter campaign and a fully transparent development process so we should be learning more about this project very soon.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Tropico 5 Announced

Update: The game's first nine official screenshots have been published, view them in all their glory after the jump.

Original report: The next member in the Tropico family comes from Kalypso Media and Haemimont Studios and will offer new improvements in its formula of construction and management on the homonym island. It will be released in 2014 for Windows, Mac, Linux and Xbox 360.

Octopus City Blues: Strange Adventure in Need of Help

Οctopus City Blues is a traditional adventure taking place in a city built on a giant octopus, with inhabitants as strange as you can imagine. There are few gameplay and plot details but players will be able to explore the surrealistic environments and guide dialogues through many choices based on the relations they develop with characters who will have their own likes, dislikes and rich daily schedules. Watch the trailer for a small taste of a world built with imagination and passion.

Avadon 2: The Corruption Gets a Trailer

Spiderweb Software is a small independent studio with a long history in role-playing games, which contrary to many larger companies they continue developing with the intent to offer depth in every aspect, presented in an isometric viewpoint  and with traditional yet quite often just as inventive turn and party based combat systems.

The first Avadon was released in 2011 and became one of its biggest success stories so a sequel was inevitable yet welcome, at least by genre fans who can overlook outdated graphics and recycled assets, a practice used to speed up development and significantly lower its costs. I'll now let you enjoy the first trailer of Avadon 2: The Corruption which should be released within the next few months for Windows, Mac and iOS.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Gravity Ghost: Platforming With a Twist

Gravity Ghost by Ivy Games is an indie platform game with a twist. At first glance it seems to resemble a 2D version of Super Mario Galaxy, which is not entirely accurate as when playing you won't encounter enemies, traps or other obstacles, only relaxing gravity based platforming and the sounds of an original soundtrack by the composer of FTL. Watch the game's trailer for a sample of its magic.

Memoria's New Trailer

Memoria is Daedalic Entertainment's second traditional adventure based on the pen and paper role-playing game The Dark Eye to be released for Windows and Mac. Its unique storyline will follow, through time, the adventures of two characters who live in different eras. As the game's 30th of August release date is fast approaching, a new trailer has been published aiming to attract your attention.

Tetrapulse Announced

Tetrapulse is a unique upcoming cooperative retro shooter for Windows, Linux and Mac by the independent The Amiable. When playing, two to four players will be tasked with repelling alien hordes by using their own life force as ammo in order to protect the Heartstone which acts as a battery allowing them to recharge. Watch the game's announcement trailer to better understand the mechanics.

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Bot Colony Wants to Talk to You

Bot Colony is an episodic adventure that will be released for Windows and eventually for mobiles, tablets and consoles. Its plot will task you with the discovery of a dangerous spy on Agrihan island, a location used not only as the base of operations for the largest robot creation company but also as a testbed for future colonies on Mars.

The creators aim to make a profound difference in interactions, as the primary method of communication will be plain old English, easily understood and naturally returned by the various characters in the game. The software in charge of communication is apparently so demanding that it's found in powerful remote servers, making internet access a requirement despite the fact this is a solo adventure.

Broken Sword: The Serpent's Curse First Trailer

This highly anticipated sequel of the classic adventure series is becoming a reality thanks to the success of its crowd funding campaign via Kickstarter, which took place in 2012 and raised over $800.000. About a year later, Revolution Software shows the game in motion to all those waiting for the Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android and, after the latest announcement, PlayStation Vita release.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Dead Island: Riptide, the ZOMBA

Update: The first screenshots of the game have been published, you can view them all after the jump and read the newly released gameplay information.

Original report: Today Deep Silver announced a new under development title, Dead Island: Epidemic. Contrary to the previous sandbox FPS/RPG games in the series, it will be another free-to-play ΜΟΒΑ (according to Deep Silver, a ZOMBA) where three teams will simultaneously battle for victory.

Deep Silver had no details to share but promised that the game will have the features setting the series apart, and that we will find out more during gamescom 2013, which will take place near the end of this month. Dead Island: Epidemic was announced for PC without a formal release date.

Murdered: Soul Suspect: The Witness

Murdered: Soul Suspect by Airtight Games and Square Enix is a mystery adventure where as Detective Ronan O'Connor you will try to solve the case of your own murder. This will be done by utilizing ghostly powers to gather clues and face demonic creatures. A new trailer was published revealing more details about its plot as the protagonist discovers the existence of an eye witness which you will likely need to track down, perhaps even save.

Mother 4

Unfortunately, this isn't the place for an official announcement of yet another title in the popular RPG series by Nintendo. Instead you will find the trailer of a game created by a talented group of fans. Of course, after watching it you may simply no longer mind as it gives the impression of professional grade work with the expected originality nearly intact. Mother 4 is planned to release for Windows, Linux and Mac within the winter of 2014.

Silence of the Sleep: Horror in 2D

Silence of the Sleep is an upcoming 2D horror adventure which will give you control of Jacob Reeves, a man who in his attempt to commit suicide finds himself in a nightmare, within which he will have to discover the cause of this journey. The game's first teaser doesn't reveal much, but it's a good sample showing that despite being in 2D it has the potential to offer the horror it promises, and then some.

Rogue Shooter

The name alone implies everything you need to know about this independently developed game that combines elements of the FPS and roguelike genres. This November Rogue Shooter by Hippomancer will pit every interested PC gamer against aliens, robots and man-eating plants in a space station comprising of 200 randomly generated levels.

Shadow Warrior: You've Got Wang Trailer

Shadow Warrior from Devolver Digital and Flying Wild Hog, the last known for the science fiction FPS  Hard Reset, is an all new re-imagining of the classic 3D Realms game. Its goal is to combine the original humorous atmosphere and retro fun with modern technology and options, while removing potentially racist elements as well as the multiplayer functions. While nothing is certain, trailers like the following show it's certainly on the right path.

EVE: Valkyrie Announced

EVE: Valkyrie was first presented as a simple space combat multiplayer demo showing the possible ideas of the developer CCP, known from the space MMORPG EVE Online, for the home virtual reality PC peripheral Oculus Rift. Finally, as was perhaps inevitable given the extremely positive reactions by the audience, via a fancy trailer it's been announced as a full game to be released in 2014.

Nadia Was Here Keeps Improving

Nadia Was Here is a retro RPG  utilizing a 16 color palette to present its original fantasy world. The gameplay it offers includes tough riddles and a unique battle system alongside inventive new ideas, for example how any NPC encountered may have something different to say to each of your party's members, which you can switch between while exploring. Watch the game's new trailer for more.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Lords of the Fallen: The First Trailer

Few details are known about this action RPG by CI Games under the leadership of Tomasz Gop, former member of CD Project RED who held the role of producer for The Witcher 2. Unfortunately this first trailer doesn't shed any more light as it doesn't offer any glimpses of gameplay or particulars about the storyline. It's quite pretty though.

Monday, 19 August 2013

Race the Sun Released

Race the Sun by Flippfly is an arcade game that seems simple but is certainly not easy. Your primary goal will be to reach the high score by keeping your solar powered craft at a speed that allows for it to stay in the sun as long as possible. Of course, the levels make this task difficult with varied obstacles that often unpredictably move. Τheir content is partly designed by the developers and many randomized elements are included, while you can also create your own. The PC and Mac version of the game is available for just $10 (about 7,50 €).

The Dark Eye: Demonicon Trailer

Some of you may know of The Dark Eye as a pen & paper role-playing game, or via the more recent Drakensang PC games which, while relatively faithful to the former offering players control of a full party of adventurers, were succeeded by a very different Online entry. The Dark Eye: Demonicon by Kalypso  Media also strays from its roots and depicts its dark world through the lens of an action rpg, focusing on the control of a single character in a story where sibling love is the only light and at the same time the greatest threat.

A New Aarklash: Legacy Trailer Appears

Aarklash: Legacy is an upcoming PC game by Cyanide Studio. Announced as a tactical adventure it will allow players  to control four of its eight available characters and utilize their different abilities to efficiently deal with enemies that will often outnumber them. In practice the battles seem to resemble classic role-playing games like Icewind Dale as they function in real time yet allow pausing to better analyze the situation and give orders. The developers also promise a rich story within which the heroes will form strong bonds. Watch the new trailer for more.

Teslagrad: Play & Win

Teslagrad by the Norwegian Rain Games is an upcoming puzzle platform game. Unique not only in art style but also gameplay, it tasks players with using electromagnetic powers to overcome all kinds of challenges. If you're unsure of what this means, don't worry. The first demo has been released allowing you to find out by playing.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Eschalon: Book III Teaser

The Eschalon series is an ambitious independent effort that has so far been successful in providing the audience with two fairly solid role-playing games. With retro sensibilities it focuses on the evolution of a single character through turn based battles and the exploration of a 2D living world for the discovery of new areas and quests even outside the main storyline, which often offer choices that change their course. The developers from Basilisk Games published the first teaser of the third and final Eschalon title, which will soon be released for Windows, Linux and Mac.

Friday, 16 August 2013

FarSky: Survive the Deep Sea

FarSky is a different first person game that plunges you into the depths of a terrifying underwater world, which you will need to explore in order to repair your vessel and return to the surface. Even though it's still at an early development phase, it already includes role-playing game elements with upgrades for your character that will make survival seem more plausible. For now you may download the current free version for Windows, Linux and Mac.

The Red Solstice: Bring Friends

The Red Solstice by the Croatian Ironward is a science fiction top-down shooter in development for Windows. Reminiscing of Alien Swarm, up to 8 players will be tasked with utilizing the gear of an equal number of classes, emphasizing cooperation and planning to survive against hordes of monsters in increasingly tougher missions.

In Postmortem Death Has Consequences

Update: Postmortem is out. You can download and play the whole thing for free or spend some of your money for bonus goodies and an additional character.

Original report: In a radical departure from the average video game, a Postmortem player will have to carry the burden of taking a single life and seeing the consequences.

The setting is a charity gala in a conflict ridden nation going through its own industrial revolution. Naturally, the most influential figures are all present alongside less prominent staff and it's any one of them that the grim decision must be made for, either trivially or after carefully trying to find out more about each and weighing the pros and cons, though chances are that the outcome for everyone involved and the nation itself will be as unpredictable as this unique game's existence.

Rise of Venice Trailer Has Ships

Kalypso Media, publisher of upcoming trading and politics simulation Rise of Venice which will challenge you to raise through the ranks of Venetian society in single and up to four player modes, released a fancy new trailer showing pretty little ships traveling between ports and conducting naval warfare in a pretty big Mediterranean.

E.T. Armies Brings Persia to Sci-Fi

Raspina will eventually enter the crowded arena of the FPS genre with E.T. Armies, a game which according to them will meet the high standards of big budget productions while enhancing them with unique ideas and science fiction versions of Persian lore. Utilizing the Unreal Development Kit they may be on their way to achieving that, going by the just published first gameplay footage.

Candle's Gameplay Explained

Candle by Teku Studios is a platform adventure inspired by classics like Flashback and Abe's Oddysee. Its star is the seemingly defenseless Teku, who has a candle instead of a hand, but also the capability to use items and the environment to overcome obstacles, riddles and enemies.

A few hours before the completion of the Kickstarter funding campaign the first extended gameplay video of the game was published. With the developers' own commentary it gives a detailed overview of the gameplay.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

From Darkness: The Documentary Game

The developers of From Darkness can't be accused of lacking in vision, as with the little information they reveal for their project, if it can be simply called a game, they cause interest and questions seldom encountered in this medium.

The interactive experience they wish to offer will include a scenario of their own invention, which follows a journalist from Belgium as she travels to Kenya in order to conduct research and interviews. What makes it stand out is that it will also include real footage and interviews of people who talk about their lives, the hardships and conflicts that plague the region.

The Last Door Offers Episodic Horror

The Game Kitchen, developers of the minimalistic yet highly atmospheric horror adventure series Τhe Last Door, after a successful Kickstarter campaign, found a creative way to fund its ongoing development. Even though every chapter will eventually be free they rely on the donations of players, especially those who wish to gain access to them before everyone else.

The first chapter is already freely available for everyone, but to gain immediate access to the second chapter you too will need to make a small donation of your choice, with a minimum limit of 0,50€. The second chapter will become free for all in September, but by then the third chapter will also be released, once again only for those who will donate for the privilege.

The Theatrical Foul Play

Foul Play is a humorous 2D beat 'em up by Mediatonic, where daemon hunter Dashforth will be on stage retelling his exploits, with or without his sidekick Scampwick who will be available for the 2 player mode, locally or online. When playing you will need to get through 22 levels filled with over 50 types of enemies, using 12  different abilities with which you will be upgrading your characters. The twist is that you will not only have to defeat said enemies, but also do it in a theatrical manner that can satisfy the show's audience.

Contrast Introduces Didi

Contrast is a puzzle platform title by Compulsion Games and Focus Home Interactive that will perform its brand of shadow play on the PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. Through the latest trailer of the game we get to know Didi, a young girl longing for the return of her Father, Johnny, ever since he abandoned her and her mother, Kat. We also see Dawn, a special friend of Didi's who only seems to show up whenever nobody else is around them. Enjoy.

Betrayer Announced

Update: Betrayer just became available through Steam Early Access for 12,59€ (with the 10% discount offered until the 21st of August). This version includes a first large region to explore and representatives from almost all planned types of weapons, but barely any of the storyline, while future updates will include more areas, enemies and mysteries. The developers warn Betrayer is of course far from finished so players can expect issues and a lack of content, while it may become necessary to start over from the beginning in future versions.

Original report: The independent Blackpowder Games which comprises of people that in the past were responsible for the creation of popular - if not legendary - titles, like the FPS series F.E.A.R. and No Οne Lives Forever, just announced its first game, Betrayer.

As an FPS with Adventure elements set in an abandoned colony on the coast of Virginia in 1604, it will present a mystery full of danger and ghosts. Playing the protagonist just arriving from England, you will discover what happened and who a mysterious woman in red that seems to be helping is.

One Simple Day

That is the temporary title of the first game by Dima aka Night Rabbit, under development for Windows, Mac and Linux. In this adventure you will take control of a currently nameless man. At first, if you exclude the fact he is on a spaceship,  he appears to lead a normal daily life where he works, socializes and has fun, until the disaster revealed in this One Simple Day teaser changes everything.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Angelic Adventures Await in Heaven's Hope

Mosaic Mask Studio just published a beautiful trailer for their humorous adventure game Heaven's Hope, which will put you in the shoes of a fallen angel facing the inquisition of a decadent world on his way home. The development was halted for two years, but its fairy tale will finally be completed in Q4 2014 and offer 40 hand drawn screens, over 25 characters, side quests and much more, in about 8 hours of gameplay available for Windows and Mac.

Pilota: a 2D Simulator

Once Ζsolt Βartok's Pilota is completed, it will offer you control of many different types of aircraft in equally diverse missions, ranging from crop dusting and races to rescue operations and bombings. All of that in varied, potentially dangerous conditions and within a big world with islands, airports, oil rigs and many other points of interest.

StarCraft Universe Kickstarter

No, Blizzard is not using Κickstarter to finance its next creation. StarCraft Universe is actually a mod for StarCraft II. Previously known as World of StarCraft, after communication with Blizzard the name was changed. It may be the first mod to be funded in this manner, while it is unusual if not admirable that Blizzard not only allows, but also encourages the effort. But let's talk about the game.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Project Phoenix: Indie JRPG, AAA Talent

Update #2: Within less than a day the campaign has exceeded the original $100.000 goal by over 150%. Additional stretch goals however will provide considerable improvements and reach up to $1.650.000. If all of these are met, the game will include greater character and monster variety, additional areas, fully modeled cities and a freely explorable overworld, while the soundtrack will be recorded with the performance of the Eminence Symphony Orchestra by Grammy Award winning John Kurlander.

Update #1: The Kickstarter campaign for the project has now been launched and offers additional information, while it's already achieved over 20% of the goal. The lowest pledge amount that nets players the game upon its release is $20, though the lower tiers are of somewhat limited supply. It's been clarified that it is primarily developed for the PC with PS4 and Vita versions very likely, while the mobile/tablet OS versions will differ in accordance with the system limitations. The game's official website has also been opened.

Original report: TOKYO 08/08/2013. Project Phoenix today announced their intention to set up a Kickstarter to develop a Japanese role-playing game combined with Real Time Strategy. Uniting top developers from the East and West, Project Phoenix is the brainchild of game developer Hiroaki Yura, the founder of Creative Intelligence Arts. This fresh take on the JRPG genre features the art direction of Kiyoshi Arai, who brings experience from Final Fantasy XII and XIV, and music headed up by Nobuo Uematsu, the legendary composer of the Final Fantasy series, marking Uematsu's first ever commitment to an independent game project.

Bad Smell Could Be Good

Bad Smell by magicdweedoo is a 2D top down shooter in which you're tasked with exterminating countless enemies using creative or simply destructive weapons. It offers unique graphics and the developers' sense of humour throughout two different modes. In the arcade mode you will go through randomly generated levels, while in the story mode you will be challenged by seven pre-designed levels and their bosses. All this under the sounds of an original soundtrack's eighteen tracks by eight different artists.

Sunday, 11 August 2013

COREPLAY Issues Statement on Chaos Chronicles

In response to the petition that was recently started in favor of Chaos Chronicles' continued development and release, publisher bitComposer Games issued an official statement citing a legal impasse that they claimed to have done everything in their power to overcome. Now it's developer COREPLAY's turn to present their side of the story, which follows exactly as it was sent to me: