Never Say Die

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Posts tagged games

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Steam Summer Sale

Yep, it’s that time of year again. Steam sale, all kinds of bargains on all kinds of games. They’ve got the same format as before - heavy reductions on a few games that change every 24 hours, discounts on publisher catalogues in general, and heavy discounts on publisher packs, where you can pick up a large bundle of games at once. They’ve also got a few new tricks - “flash sales” that last for just a few hours, and community voted reductions, where folks vote for which game they want to see on sale next. It’s all on the homepage:

http://store.steampowered.com/

They also have an iOS and Android app btw, might be handy if you want to keep an eye on the time-limited sales and pick stuff up on the move (it also lets you use the Steam friends feature for IM and such):

http://store.steampowered.com/mobile

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Deus Ex: Human Revolution

The press embargo’s lifted in the past half hour, and Deus Ex: Human Revolution reviews are popping up all over. Exec summary: it’s very goddamned good. PC Gamer’s review (previously available in print) is here, here’s one for the XBox version from IGN, and here’s another from Bit-Tech. Keep an eye on Metacritic for more.

The game comes out around midnight in the US, midnight Friday in Europe. Personally, I’ve pre-ordered it, something I very rarely do given how hit and miss games can be. Don’t think I’ll be disappointed.

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Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Well, it looks like they pulled it off. Deus Ex: Human Revolution launches in three weeks, and PC Gamer recently announced that they’d reviewed it with a stellar 94% score and Editor’s Choice award. They say that Deus Ex: Human Revolution “is absolutely the Deus Ex of our age, a genuinely worthy prequel, and a game that puts almost everything else in the genre to shame”. The review isn’t available online yet, but the issue containing it should go on sale today.

Some recent trailers to keep you going; a video where the developers discuss the design of the various global city environments in the game, plus a trailer highlighting the game’s conspiracies. There are also new trailers with gameplay footage and commentary discussing the “four pillars” of gameplay in Deus Ex; stealth, combat, hacking and social.

This is great news, really does sound like Eidos Montreal pulled this one out of the bag in spectacular style. And on a random note, if you wondered who voices Adam Jensen’s grim rasp, it’s this chap.

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Summer sales ftw

The Steam Summer Sale is on for the next week or two, with excellent daily deals plus ongoing general reductions. Good chance to pick up all sorts on the cheap. The sale started a day ago and goes on until the 10th. See their home page for ongoing 24-hour daily deals.

They also have major reductions on publisher-specific packs for the whole duration (great way to build up a collection of quality games quick, at a major discount). Particular highlights here include the Valve and id packs, containing pretty much everything those two titans have ever published, thus covering more than a few of the best and most iconic games ever made. It’s all yours for €45 and €30 respectively. id’s pack goes as far back as Commander Keen, and Valve’s goes as far up as Portal 2. Keep in mind if you buy a pack including games you already own on Steam, you can gift the spare copy on to someone else.

Last but not least, there are general reductions (usually around 33%, 50% or more on the smaller publishers) on a wide selection of publishers’ whole catalogues. Keep in mind many of the more popular these games may appear in the 24-hour daily deals at greater reductions, so it may be worth holding out for a while.

Speaking of sales, classic gaming site GOG.com also have some going on, this time a 50% off offer on Interplay’s games. This is a pretty big catalogue, and includes such highlights as the Fallout, Freespace and Descent series, not to mention noteworthy novelties like MDK and Messiah. Promotion goes on until the 4th (Monday), so get it on.

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15 years of Quaking

Landmark FPS Quake was released 15 years ago today (yes, you really are that damn old). Bethesda (who own id Software these days) mark the occasion with a video from QuakeWorld ‘96 and some memories from John Carmack, including giving his first Ferrari to Thresh for winning that early tournament, not to mention meeting his wife Katherine through the game.

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E3 - Jagged Alliance, Carrier Command, etc

Some more interesting bits and pieces. Back to CCP again, GameTrailers have an interview discussing the gameplay mechanics and realtime integration between the Dust 514 FPS experience and the EVE Online MMO activity. Gotta say, this is really interesting stuff.

In what seems to be an growing trend, news just in that military sim ArmA 2 is morphing into a free-to-play online game. Given the game’s emphasis (total focus) on teamplay, this could work out well. PC Gamer have the details, with a trailer.

On the console front, there’s a new Uncharted game in the works, and this interview explains how Naughty Dog use performance capture tech to mesh cinematic action with player-driven gameplay. Quite impressive results, to say the least.

GameSpot have some better quality footage of Prey 2 in this gameplay walk-through. Definitely potential here with the new direction.

One of PC Gamer’s guys stumbled across Payday: The Heist, a co-op bank robbery game, and seemed very impressed. They also have some video footage. Apparently it’s a bit like Left 4 Dead, only robbing banks. Looks bland enough to me to be honest, but they appear taken with it.

There’s a remake of tactical squad classic Jagged Alliance in the works from Kalypso, and you can see some walk-through footage; part 1, part 2 and part 3. Looks promising enough, albeit in early form. The strategic aspect in particular seems to hold very close to the original - Bobby Ray’s guns, I.M.P. for profiling, etc. The tactical view is now 3D of course, and the turn-based system has also changed into a choice of realtime or a hybrid system of pre-planned moves. I really hope they pull this off - there’s been various stops and starts and some fairly weak attempts over the years. A good modern tactical/strategic squad game in the spirit of X-Com and Jagged Alliance would suit me very well indeed, but they’re a rare breed.

Speaking of the good old days, as had been rumoured, strategy classic Carrier Command (see historical) is being remade by Bohemia Interactive (of ArmA fame). PC Gamer have a trailer. The original game was a combination of real time strategy and vehicle sim, in that you could fly and control individual units as well as have overall command of the area of operations and strategic aspects. A fairly rare thing nowadays, games of this sort used to a bit more common; Psygnosis’ Armour-Geddon is another I recall playing myself in the mid 90’s.

Finally, on a general note, keep in mind I’m just passing on stuff here that catches my eye, so it tends to follow my own gaming interests (PC gaming, with few MMOs, little Japanese stuff, not much Call of Duty/Mario, etc). There’s a lot more at E3 beyond what I’m covering here - console stuff, sports and racing games, Wii this, Kinect that and portable the other, numerous MMOs and so on. Take a look around the usual suspects; GameSpot, PC Gamer, GameTrailers, etc for broader news and views - E3 is a very big show and there’s something for everyone.

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E3, show goes on

Latest E3 material. PC Gamer talk a bit more about CCP’s Dust 514, a companion FPS to their MMO EVE Online - PS3 players on the ground in the FPS will be able to interact with PC players in the MMO orbiting the planet, via in-game chat, judicious use of orbital weapons and EVE’s characteristic financial debauchery. Pretty innovative notions. But yeah, unfortunately the game itself is a PS3 exclusive for the moment, which seems like an odd idea.

PC Gamer posted their impressions of of Bioshock Infinite (they liked it a lot). Also on that front, GameTrailers have an interview and gameplay demo with Ken Levine. Impressive game, to say the least.

PC Gamer also have a brief interview with id’s Tim Willits on vehicle action in RAGE. And here’s some cam footage of gameplay from Ghost Recon: Future Soldier; part 1 and part 2. Another interview here talking about the main “pillars” of improvement made in Battlefield 3. If you’re into 4X space strategy games, here’s a trailer for Sword of The Stars 2. Speaking of sci-fi, PC Gamer also have their impressions of the new XCOM (shooter) game.

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E3 - Deus Ex, John Carmack, etc

E3’s in full swing now, and someone’s gotta keep you people entertained.

PC Gamer have a 20 minute interview with John Carmack on RAGE, PCs, graphics and other topics. As they rightly remind us, the man is, literally, a f**king rocket scientist.

A bunch of new Deus Ex: Human Revolution material has been emerging; PC Gamer have new screenshots, GameTrailers have a nice 7-minute developer gameplay walk-through, and a cam-job of gameplay from the show (it’s steady and pretty high quality though). There’s some more cam footage of gameplay to be had if you want it, though tbh I think it shows a bit too much (of the early game AFAIK) at this point.

Last but not least, there’s a trailer for Metro: Last Light with some gameplay, and an interview and walk-through from IGN on the amazing-looking Journey I mentioned earlier.

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E3++

A bunch more E3. There’s new Skyrim footage; a 14-minute piece in this case, from G4’s hyperactive look at the game, as shared by PC Gamer. It crosses over with the 7 minutes of gameplay already shown, but there’s plenty of new stuff in there too - the game’s UI, a town, dialogue, horses (sans armour), etc.

Here’s an interview from Machinima about the recently announced next entry in the Hitman series, Hitman: Absolution (note; the in-game footage they show is all from the older game Hitman: Blood Money, for reasons best known to themselves). Also a trailer for Dust 514 from CCP, which brings an FPS game to the EVE Online universe - that also crosses over with the MMO; actions in each game impact on the other in realtime. Sounds pretty goddamn cool. Speaking of spacemen, IGN have an extensive (15 minute) gameplay walk-through of Mass Effect 3. On a more retro sci-fi note, here’s the trailer for the new XCOM game (an FPS) that’s in the works.

Nintendo have presented their new console, the Wii U (yeah) - see the launch trailer. The controller seems to be half tablet computer (it’s big, and it’s got a big touchscreen), half controller. You definitely won’t want to be flinging one of these around the living room, but it does seem to have a lot of potential functionality.

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