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Reaper of Souls

By on April 17, 2014 at 4:23 pm

I’m not ashamed to admit that I ragequit over the state of Diablo 3 at launch. After finishing the game once, I’d had enough. The regular and inconveniently-timed-for-Australians server maintenance, latency, and the fact that I couldn’t choose to play offline all led to me coming away from one of my most anticipated games of all time with a sour taste in my mouth. I was frustrated that the sequel to a game that I had played almost exclusively offline came with a whole slew of features that I didn’t care about, which explicitly precluded me from playing the game the way I wanted to play it: offline, with no latency, and with local network multiplayer only.

Not quite two years later came the release of Reaper of Souls, the new expansion to Diablo 3. I was drawn in by the conversation surrounding the new content, I was tempted. Nearly two years of learned lessons, patches, and improvements to a game that I had so sorely wanted to love. Perhaps this was the time for forgiveness, for a second chance? The news that Australian servers had been rolled out was enough to push me over the edge. I was going back to Sanctuary.

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Civilization: Beyond Earth

By on April 13, 2014 at 1:30 am

Civilization: Beyond Earth. Never has a game title dripped with such portent. On the face of it, the meaning is pretty obvious; Firaxis are releasing a new entry in the Civilization franchise, and it is going to be set off-world. However, what is truly exciting is remembering that the last time Firaxis took the Civilization formula to space we got one of the greatest 4X strategy games of all time – Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri.

Speaking with Firaxis, it is clear that they are aware of the legacy ‘Civ in space’ brings with it, but it’s equally clear the team intend this to be its own beast.

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Betrayer

By on April 10, 2014 at 11:00 am

The year is 1604. Washed up on a beach after the (presumed) crash of your ship, you expected to find a thriving colony on the edge of the new world. Instead, what you find is an island full of ghosts, demons and a mysterious cloaked woman on a quest to locate her twin sister. Betrayer is easily one of the more ambitious indie titles I have seen in a while, with an opening so ominous, confusing and daunting it put me instantly on the back foot. Soon you’ll find your first “base” of sorts, Fort Henry — but from there, the mystery only deepens as the game forces you to evaluate your surroundings and discover clues to what has occurred. Why are there human remains solidified in place? Why does this bell create instant darkness? Why are these souls begging me to find their loved ones?

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Murdered: Soul Suspect

By on April 9, 2014 at 9:26 am

A chilling scene plays out before me. I witness violent flashbacks, a brutal murder, an eerie young ghost child painting indecipherable, blurry runes on a dank apartment wall. A second later the cutscene is over, and I immediately sprint through a wall into some dude’s kitchen and stand inside his fridge, giggling.

This is Murdered: Soul Suspect, and I’m a ghost detective. That doesn’t mean I have to be serious all the time.

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Rust

By on April 3, 2014 at 12:14 pm

Rust is many things to many people, and to those who haven’t fallen into its grasp but instead look through a Twitch or YouTube window, it looks simply like DayZ mixed with Minecraft. To an extent, it is — the crafting and survival elements of the game are neatly in tune with its spiritual predecessors, but at the same time, is nothing like them at all.

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Pillars of Eternity

By on March 28, 2014 at 5:21 pm

Obisidian’s Pillars of Eternity, the artist formerly known as Project Eternity, is being eagerly anticipated by hundreds of thousands of RPG lovers around the world. But how many of those backers only latched onto the project because it seemed like an old-school RPG lovers dream come true?

We caught up with Josh Sawyer, project lead on Pillars of Eternity, in a brief moment of calm at this year’s GDC. He explained that Obsidian were undertaking a careful balancing act when it came to just how much weight to give the opinions of old-school RPG grognards.

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Heroes of the Storm

By on March 24, 2014 at 12:36 pm

Blizzard are calling this a “technical” alpha, otherwise known as the “really really early stages guys please don’t be too harsh on us build”. All it means to me, and probably everyone else, is that this is the first playable bit of HotS – which is Heroes of the Storm, not Heart of the Swarm.

It finally answers some questions: what Blizzard thinks players want in a MOBA, what holes they think are missing and what direction they’ll take in the future. Some of the decisions are refreshing. Others – not so much.

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