Half the battle with campy comedy is picking the right subject for a roast in the hot seat. Poking fun is just part of good satire. The other half is a fondness for the subject that transcends the jokes. Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon replaces the generic jungle-island backdrops from previous entries in the series with a neon-lit 1980s dystopia that lovingly references every cliché of the era to hilarious effect. I looked at the PC version, but it’s available for Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 as well.
Well, this is interesting. While the rest of the world was ogling over what’s coming down the pipe from Google, Steam introduced collectible virtual trading cards that you can earn by playing games, and trade in for bragging rights and prizes.
Sound odd? Sure, but it’s also rather neat. Steam Trading Cards are currently in beta, and themed after the few games that support them. You earn cards by playing the participating games, though you can only earn about half of a game’s total card set on your own. You’ll need to collect the rest of the set by bartering with friends or other Steam users.
Following in the footsteps of 2010’s Metro 2033, Metro: Last Light improves upon the gameplay of its predecessor without destroying what made the series great in the first place: the setting. Last Light takes you back to the post-apocalyptic Russian wasteland, employing an excellent soundtrack and bleak, desolate imagery to deliver a first-person shooter with surprising pathos and one of the most genuine game narratives in recent memory.
Boot up Last Light and you’ll be dropped into the boots of Artyom–a man haunted by memories of his mother, or lack thereof–as he attempts to leave the Russian Metro to capture “a dark one”, monstrous remnants of the world before it was devastated by all-out nuclear war. Of course, nothing goes smoothly for Artyom, and along the way you’ll be captured by other survivors and work together with another captive, Pavel, to orchestrate an escape. Artyom’s quest ranges across the Russian wasteland, ultimately leading you through areas devastated by nuclear destruction and nests of enemies mutated by the apocalypse before culminating in one of the coolest and most intense firefight finales I’ve ever experienced.
It’s only been a couple of months since the launch of SimCity and the debacle that followed (which still lingers today), but Maxis and EA want to cleanse your palate with a new addition to the Sims franchise: The Sims 4 is coming to PC and Mac in 2014.
EA writes on their blog: “The Sims franchise is fueled by the passion and creativity of its millions of fans around the world. Their continued devotion to the franchise ignites the fire of creativity of the team at The Sims Studio, driving them to continually improve and innovate on one of the world’s most successful simulation game that has sold more than 150 million copies worldwide.”
Slay my foes, and then eat their skulls? Well, that’s hardly sporting. Or sanitary. But the horde of undead foes I’m facing in 17Bits’ Skulls of the Shogun certainly won’t hesitate to tap into the unparalleled power that a calcium-rich snack will offer, so it’s a case of getting them before they get us, really. And who doesn’t enjoy crushing the occasional skull?
As befits a turn-based strategy game, securing resources is the linchpin for success. And Skulls offers no shortage of resources to manage, some less obvious than others. The most important is rice—rice paddies are strewn about the game’s single- and multi-player maps, and while the dead don’t have much need for food (besides skulls, but I’ll get to that) haunting rice paddies will allow you to stockpile the rice you’ll need to acquire resource number two: soldiers.
What’s the most difficult thing you did in the last year? Now stop. Before you answer, can it compare to creating a full-fledged indie game—slated to be approved on Steam—created entirely with QBASIC? Probably not.
QBASIC is a software interpreter for the BASIC programming language that showed up in 1991, and basic it is. Here’s a little video of a game created by IBM to show off the awesome power of QBASIC when it first launched:
You get the idea after about 45 seconds. Now, over 20 years later—but with the exact same programming tools—we have Black Annex. Check out this trailer with actual gameplay—and I can’t say it enough—using the same programming language that the above video was “showing off.”
At first glance, the Razer Edge Pro is indistinguishable from other Windows 8 tablets: It’s 2.2 pounds of matte black metal with a 10.1-inch screen and a single Windows button. But pick it up, and you’ll immediately feel the heft in your hands. It’s bulkier than the Surface Pro, and also runs much, much hotter.
That heat flows from the powerful components nestled inside. An Nvidia GPU and an Intel Core i7 CPU allow Razer’s tablet to compete with similarly priced ultrabooks in terms of raw processing performance. The goal? To deliver no-exuses PC gaming in a handheld tablet form factor. Throw in a Gamepad Controller accessory, and the Edge Pro begins to approximate a console gaming experience, care of dual analog sticks, a D-pad and action buttons.
Building a city is hard work. Armchair urban planners have known this for nigh on three decades, ever since 1989’s SimCity introduced us to a game world of zoning regulations and budget balancing.
It’s been a long time, but SimCity has been reborn. Powering the experience is developer Maxis’s GlassBox engine, which attempts to dynamically simulate conditions in a city. You can track individual citizens as they shuffle about your city, filling residential areas as they move in and causing traffic jams as they attempt to commute to work. While much of the gameplay has been simplified (no more laying down power lines and water pipes), new complexity has been introduced through a focus on multiplayer cooperation and specialized cities.
Whether you’re killing time playing the beta or sitting there twiddling your thumbs waiting for the Heart of the Swarm expansion to release on March 12, now you can distract yourself with the pretty new CGI trailer titled “Vengence.”
They revealed …
Razer’s CEO and Creative Director Min-Liang Tan, confirmed via a tweet Thursday that the company’s Project Fiona gaming tablet, first discussed at CES 2012, is in the design stages and will eventually be released.
He sent out a Facebook update Wednesday asking for 10,000 likes in seven days to gauge interest and to see if the hardware was worth releasing. As of this writing, he’s gotten 10,788 likes on the update and has decided to proceed.
The Razer executive’s Facebook page asked for suggestions and user feedback when it comes to the tablet’s design. “We’ve been working on it since [CES] and have narrowed down a couple of key concepts/designs. We would like to reach out to the community to see the level of interest before we actually launch it,” the post reads.