Author: John Edelmann

Review: Fortified

The first thing you’ll notice is the stylized look of the game. It nails the general atmosphere, including graphics, writing and cheesy dialogue that normally comes with 50s comics.

You’ll feel right at home if you’ve played the Orcs Must Die series. You place defensive structures in between waves, and run around with cool weapons, fending off aliens alongside your turrets and structures.

The combat is very satisfying. You have a selection of cool weapons to choose from. Ranging from a futuristic freeze ray to a classic tommy gun. Each weapon also has a secondary fire, that allows for further versatility when you’re attacking enemies. Enemies ragdoll when you kill them, which makes shooting feel very gratifying.

Killing enemies also charges up a Hero meter that allows you to become super powerful, and wreak havoc. They differ depending on what character you’re playing as. Some might have infinite ammo and be very fast, while another might fly or freeze nearby enemies.

When you kill enemies, you gain money to spend on structures. These can be built on the ground, or walls to help you keep the hoard back. Traps can either assist in ways like slowing down an enemy, or flat out blow them up. You may also sell and re-position a trap if you want to make changes in between waves.

As you play through the game, you’ll unlock ability points to spend on new structures and weapons for your characters. Each character has a few unique weapons and structures to call their own. My personal gripe with the game is that I want to play and have fun with each different character. Although the fact that they all level up separately, means I need to play earlier, more boring levels and slowly unlock stuff for that new character. It’s not a huge problem, as some people might not mind it, and it adds replay value, but it bugs me a bit.

There are 2 game modes to currently choose from. Each can be played solo or up to 4 players. The campaign has 12 levels. Each have a large amount of waves, differing types of enemies and last quite a while, so the replay value is decent. The Invasion mode pits you in what seems to be an infinite number of waves (I say seemingly because I don’t see anywhere the game explains it). Each wave also adds a few random modifiers to make things interesting. Like faster enemies, quick Hero recharge times, etc. Pretty good mode to play for fun after you’ve upgraded your characters.

Overall, I really love the look of the game, and it’s a lot of fun. It’s definitely something that is more fun with friends, but you can play it solo or with the public just fine as well.
(The graphics options menu has a lot of nice customisable options too)
Recommended!

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A Hat in Time Releases for PS4 and Xbox One on December 6

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Developed by Gears for Breakfast, A Hat in Time is a true homage to the greatest 3D platformers and a love letter to the classic Nintendo GameCube. This charming adventure channels the spirit of beloved games such as Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie and Psychonauts. Grant Kirkhope, the composer for Banjo-Kazooie, is even on board as a composer for A Hat in Time. A Hat in Time also holds the honor of being one of the largest and most successful Kickstarter-funded indie 3D platformers, earning nearly 1000% of its original Kickstarter goal!

You play as Hat Kid, a tiny space-traveling girl with a lot of heart and a big top hat, as she travels the universe to protect its worlds from the evil Mustache Girl. Join her as she explores five incredibly diverse and giant open worlds, jumping and fighting her way through baddies, and unlocking sweet new hats with all-new abilities.

Beamdog to release Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition

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Video game developer Beamdog has announced the return of a classic. Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition will be available for pre-order on Beamdog on November 21 at 12pm PST and will be coming soon to Steam.

As of November 21, 2017, Beamdog will begin selecting lucky fans from the pre-order pool on Beamdog.com for the Head Start program. This program allows pre-order owners to play, import modules, and update persistent world servers early.

“Neverwinter Nights was a unique game that distilled the essence of Dungeons & Dragons and allowed players to build, share and act as Dungeon Master for amazing gaming experiences.” said Trent Oster, Beamdog CEO. “I think this unique combination makes Neverwinter Nights one of the most versatile role playing game experiences of all time.” Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition combines the familiarity of the Forgotten Realms with new features like advanced graphic shaders, 4k support, updated translations (French, German, Italian, Polish and Spanish) and the fan community’s most requested bug fixes.

The release is accompanied by a Digital Deluxe bundle which includes three of the original premium modules (Pirates of the Sword Coast, Infinite Dungeons, and Wyvern Crown of Cormyr), two soundtracks collecting all of the original music, and a new portrait pack. Each piece of DLC will be available to wishlist on Steam All content will be available on Windows, macOS, and Linux. “I invite everyone interested in the future of Neverwinter Nights to join the Beamdog forums,” said Oster. “We hope it will become a new home where you can speak directly with the development team. We need to know what YOU want to see Neverwinter Nights become, and we’ll do our best to meet and exceed those expectations.”

Far Cry 5 – Creating Co-Op Havoc in Hope County

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Far Cry is as much about capturing natural beauty as it is about explosive mayhem, and with Far Cry 5, the bar for re-creating the wilderness is especially high. Unlike the fictional Kyrat or Rook Islands, Montana’s forests, farmlands, and highways will feel familiar to a lot of players – and that means the developers needed to accurately capture every detail, from the wildlife to the logos on roadside shops to the bark on trees, to make Hope County feel like a convincing place.

That meant taking a series of trips to Montana, during which the developers trekked into small towns and wilderness locations. They got to know Montana’s ecosystem, wildlife, and people, and took thousands of photos, many of which were used to re-create the landscape in a process called photogrammetry. Using photogrammetry, objects like trees, vegetation, buildings, and even people are photographed from multiple angles and scanned to create lifelike 3D objects. This technique led not only to some of the most detailed environments Far Cry has seen to date, but to a few surprises that made their way into the story.

The team’s photos ended up informing not just the look of Far Cry 5’s environments, but the way the game world itself was structured. Like the real Montana, Far Cry 5’s landscape is dotted with road signs and billboards, and they aren’t just set dressing; they’re there to organically alert you to where you are, direct you to specific businesses or locations that might be of help, and even unlock intel about good fishing spots. And a big part of making those messages stick out is through branding.

Another key part of understanding where you are is in the businesses themselves, which are frequently named for their region or town, or after the characters who run them. In fact, says Graphic Assistant Marco Beauchemin, it wasn’t unusual during development for a business and its branding to develop from characters who appeared in the storyline.

The approach to branding isn’t just about business, either. It extends to the homes of the characters themselves; the team wanted to create interiors that felt lived-in, with decorations that tell you something about the person who lives there, what they do, and how well they take care of their stuff.

Another thing that came out of the branding process was the identity of the resistance movement you’ll build in Hope County, which stems from the Hope County Cougars, a local baseball team. Starting out as a sign to dress up a part of a baseball field, the team’s branding spread to pennants and promotional calendars in the game’s bars.

All of these elements combine to create a rich backdrop for an explosive adventure to liberate Hope County from the grip of The Project at Eden’s Gate cult. Far Cry 5’s world is packed with activity and danger – not the least of which comes from the bears, wolves, skunks, and feared wolverines that might complicate a mission by attacking at any time – and its version of Montana is a beautiful, diverse place to explore.

Niantic announces Harry Potter: Wizards Unite

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Niantic and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today announced the development of Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, an augmented reality (AR) mobile game inspired by J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World. Published by Niantic and co-developed by Niantic and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, under the Portkey Games label, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will use state-of-the-art augmented reality mobile technology to put magic in the hands of aspiring wizards and witches worldwide.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will reveal that magic is all around us, and allow players to be a part of Harry Potter’s rich world, through Niantic’s AR + real-world mobile game platform and the franchise expertise of WB Games San Francisco’s development and publishing team. By exploring real-world neighborhoods and cities across the globe, players will go on adventures, learn and cast spells, discover mysterious artifacts, and encounter legendary beasts and iconic characters.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is part of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment’s Portkey Games, a new games label dedicated to creating video game and mobile experiences inspired by J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World.

EA Sports UFC 3 Revealed With UFC Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor

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Today Electronic Arts officially revealed EA Sports UFC 3 featuring UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor, the only UFC athlete to hold UFC titles in two weight classes simultaneously, as the game’s official global cover athlete. EA Sports UFC 3 introduces a new generation of fighting for fight fans powered by Real Player Motion (RPM) Tech, a revolutionary new gameplay animation technology that delivers the most fluid and responsive motion in EA Sports UFC history. A new G.O.A.T. Career Mode now means that players’ choices outside UFC’s world-famous Octagon matter just as much as their performance inside it. This new mode allows you to strategically promote upcoming fights, create heated rivalries and more on the road to becoming the Greatest of All Time. EA Sports UFC 3 will be available worldwide on February 2, 2018 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

“Two belts, two covers – EA Sports got it right again,” UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor said. “It’s an honor to be on the cover and I can’t wait to play the game.”

Real Player Motion (RPM) Tech is a revolutionary new EA Sports animation technology that sets a new bar for motion and responsiveness in the best-looking – and now the best-feeling – EA Sports UFC game ever. With over 5,000 new animations captured and rebuilt from the ground up, players can now move, strike, and create seamless combinations in-game with the world’s best mixed martial arts athletes. Every punch, kick, block, and counter has been recaptured and rebuilt on cutting-edge animation tech to look and feel life-like and responsive, delivering the most strategic, competitive fighting experience in franchise history.

“UFC 3 and RPM Tech mark a new generation of gameplay in EA Sports games,” said EA Sports UFC 3 Creative Director, Brian Hayes. “The new animation technology has allowed us to take a massive leap forward in motion and responsiveness. The result is a complete overhaul to gameplay where every move is more strategic and looks more authentic and beautiful.”

EA Sports UFC 3 also introduces the new G.O.A.T. Career Mode where – for the first time – the choices made throughout your career impact your path to greatness. Outside of fights, players will make promotional choices to build hype, gain fans, earn more cash through big contracts and capture the world’s attention. A new in-game social media system allows players to create heated rivalries with other UFC athletes, providing the freedom to take on any type of persona, between cool-headed contender or infamous trash-talker.

Building on the fan-favorite Knockout Mode introduced in EA Sports UFC 2, EA Sports UFC 3 delivers a new suite of multiplayer modes designed for fast, fun fights that are perfect for letting fists fly when playing against friends. Those looking for a quick social experience can jump into Stand & Bang mode, Submission Showdown mode, or opt to customize their match with unlimited stamina or extra strike damage in Fight Now Custom. The all-new Tournament Mode offers ultimate bragging rights as players attempt to take on as many opponents as possible in bracket-style elimination rounds with continuous damage and fatigue.

LocoRoco 2 Remastered Launches December 9

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LocoRoco 2 returns to PlayStation with all new enhancements taking full advantage of the PS4 and PS4 Pro systems!

The Moja Boss is not willing to accept defeat. Armed with a deadly song that sucks the life out of all living things, the evil Moja army have returned to enslave the LocoRoco! Help the LocoRoco bring life and music back to the planet in this exciting new sequel. Experience the addictive Tilt and Roll gameplay that made it an instant classic and discover brand new abilities and challenges.

Join the action on the 23rd February 2018 with Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet

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Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe announced today all the physical Editions available for Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet, the new instalment of one of the most beloved anime series, developed by Dimps Corporation. Along with the edition’s announcement and the retail pre-order, the official release date has been undisclosed: the game will be shot into physical and digital stores on the 23rd February 2018.

The available editions are:
• Standard Edition: It includes the full Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet Game.
• Collector Edition: it features the full Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet Game, 2 main characters figurines dressed with exclusive costumes from the game – Kirito and Sinon -, 1 cloth Game Map and 1 exclusive artbook.

For those who will pre-order the game*, a code will be available which will unlock SAO Asuna and SAO Kirito Costumes and the Silver Assault Rifle, an in-game weapon.

• UFG Weapon: The user’s avatar will be gifted by the ArFA-Sys with this special weapon. It enables 3D movements around the environment allowing the player to throw a light wire and reach higher areas of the map, getting closer to enemies reaching a better shooting position or to hit flying opponents.

• Bounty Player: In offline mode, besides enemies, some NPC will appear and challenge the player. They can appear in group of 4 or alone and defeating them will guarantee more rewards and a thrilling experience.

• 4players Party: The player will have the chance to face the entirely solo experience by himself or go to up 4 party members. In party mode the player won’t direct control the members but will have the chance to set specific actions and behaviours.

• New Characters: Besides Kirito, Asuna and Sinon new characters will join the crew like Yuuki, Strea, LLenn and Pitohui, both from Alternative Online Gun Gale

• GC Events: During the game some special actions can trigger special party events to discover more about the characters’ life.

Lost Dimension for PC Launches October 30

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In the near future a terrorist mastermind, known only as ‘The End’, threatens humanity with nuclear armageddon. A special task force, the S.E.A.L.E.D team, are the only ones who can stop him: a group of young combatants with incredible abilities and each with a mysterious past. Together, they must climb The End’s formidable tower one floor at a time and bring him to justice. Each of the S.E.A.L.E.D. members’ psychic powers will be put to the test against the sinister occupants of each floor as they race against the clock – and the traitors hidden within their ranks – to save the planet.

For the first time, you can now play the critically-acclaimed Lost Dimension on PC, featuring all the thrilling tactical RPG gameplay of the console original and a raft of PC-only improvements. As S.E.A.L.E.D. team leader, Sho Kasugai, you’ll need to master a deep-but-intuitive combat system, build relationships with your squad-mates and use logic to discern the traitor on each floor to progress. Only Sho has the skills necessary to weed out the traitors and defeat The End.

Resident Evil 7: biohazard DLCs ‘End of Zoe’ and ‘Not a Hero’ Trailer

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A new trailer and screens from the upcoming DLC for Resident Evil 7 biohazard are available for download, including a look at the upcoming third DLC release End of Zoe and the free Not a Hero DLC content.

The trailer and screens introduce some new glimpses into End of Zoe, featuring a mysterious outdoorsman named Joe who lives along the bank of the marshes and has a chance encounter with Zoe that sets both their fates in motion.

The new assets also showcase the free Not a Hero DLC, featuring the return of Resident Evil fan favorite and veteran BSAA soldier Chris Redfield. Taking place after the horrific events that befell Ethan Winters in Resident Evil 7 biohazard, Chris is on the hunt for Lucas Baker to bring an end to the Baker tragedy once and for all. BSAA agents had tried to take on Lucas previously, but were unsuccessful and themselves became captives of the menacing trickster. Can Chris save the team while also tracking down Lucas through perilous poison gas filled dungeons?