There are a myriad of reasons — some massive, others minuscule — for wars throughout history. Wars ranging from the disagreement you had with your mother to World War II to the intergalactic alien space combat we’re likely to experience in the near future. No wars have been particularly fun until video games came along, removing the consequences and the guilt of war. Yet still wars are brutal, sad, scary sort of affairs, no matter what your role is in them — and then there’s Happy Wars.
Happy Wars’ pseudo cell-shaded art style (mixed with a bit of watercolor, perhaps) hearkens back to the days of Cel Damage and Jet Set Radio. The zany visuals and overall lighthearted presentation prove war isn’t always depressing and vile. White is pit against black in this 15 vs. 15 multiplayer action game in an effort to capture towers and destroy the enemy team’s castle. Players can pick from a warrior, mage or cleric class and acquire new skills as they level up and attempt to out-maneuver the enemy team.
Our demo was cut into thirds, with a tutorial and gameplay rundown to start, an explanation of the deeper features of the game following that, and lastly a match played to completion on the game’s desert themed level.
The wait is nearly over – the long-awaited old-school reboot of Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain Slick Precipice of Darkness Episode Three will hit Steam and Xbox Live Indie Games July 10 for 400 MSP (or $5 if you’re buying on Steam). The PC version will feature cross-compatibility with the Mac version when that releases at a later date.
While everyone knows what strategy games are, and role playing games, and massively multiplayer online games somehow the multiplayer online battle arena genre remains confusing and mysterious. Perhaps this is because, despite being a combination of strategy, RPG and MMO (aka SRPGMMO, but nobody liked that acronym) being something everyone can understand, it in no way adds up to MOBA. However, like every other genre, MOBA is branching out, growing and adding elements from other beloved genres, so before things get out of hand let us explain what MOBA is.
The Multiplayer Online Battle Arena genre is a micro-MMORPG experience with strategical elements surrounding it, hence the combination of the three. MOBA combines some of the key features of each genre, and bakes a peculiarly delicious cake. First and foremost, however, MOBA games are team-oriented, with one team competing against one other team. Each team has a core (or something like one) which they must protect. If their core is destroyed, they lose.
The latest indie game to go down the Kickstarter route, The Banner Saga has now raised enough money to allow them to develop ports for XBLA and PSN. The game …
Shoot Many Robots was developed by Demiurge and produced by Ubisoft. It was released on March 14, 2012 for 800 MSP. A copy was provided for review purposes.
Shoot Many Robots joins the realm of this recent genre deemed “shoot and loot” wherein players mow down enemies for stuff ad nauseum, laughing all the way (ha ha ha!). The premise is incredibly simple (as the title indicates) but the gameplay is solid, replayable and so magnificently supported by its features that this game’s simple concept becomes the key to its brilliance.
A sad sad day when robots destroy P. Walter Tugnut’s truck takes a turn for the worse when he finds out they also destroyed his house. Walter is able to escape in his RV where he must thenceforth embrace the best of both worlds on his crusade to eliminate the robot outbreak. Him and his three brothers (all named P. Walter Tugnut) travel through farmland, destroyed urban environments and through dark ominous factories to bring the fight to the mechanical menace.
This 2D sidescrolling shooter embraces simple platformer gameplay complete with hovering, slides and ground-pounds. Up to four players can play offline, online or any combination thereof. Each player collects loot in boxes dropped in crates and from robots which they can then purchase from the store with nuts they collect throughout each level. Equipment ranges from regular and special weapons to hats, backpacks and “pants” which alter the player’s stats and abilities.
All Zombies Must Die! was developed Doublesix and published by Square Enix. It was released on December 28, 2011 for 800 MSP. A copy was provided for review purposes.
Zombies, zombies, zombies. Much like orcs, robots, and other generic villains they need to die. Many a game has tossed some weapons to many a player and let them loose into the zombie apocalypse, and All Zombies Must Die! sets up in just such a fashion. While RPG elements have found their way into undead-ocide before, what about in a top down twin stick shooter? Probably happened before, actually. Looks like this game has much to prove if it intends to stand out from the rotting, vomiting, mindless crowd of lookalikes.
All Zombies Must Die! controls like most twin stick shooters and gives players a choice of four different characters to play with. Co-op partners (of which there can be up to three total locally) can pick from any remaining unlocked characters as they progress through the story, or use a basic soldier character until the characters are unlocked. Each character has a special ability which applies an effect to most unaffected zombies, a main weapon which can be upgraded via the in-game crafting system, and a secondary weapon which changes as weapons are picked up in the field. This arena style zombie shooter also incorporates RPG mechanics including leveling up stats and a simple (almost invisible) preferred weapon system. A main story arch holds the game together along with side quests and mini-quests, adding up to a decent amount of game to experience.
Dungeon Defenders was developed by Trendy Entertainment and published by Reverb Publishing. It was released on October 19, 2011 for 1200 MSP. A copy of the game was provided for review purposes.
Loot, levels, and fantasy creatures–the essence of most RPGs. Add hack and slash, also quite the staple, and spells, then four different classes, then add an array of towers to summon, four player coop, challenge levels, survival and tower-only modes, a player versus player mode, and plenty of customization. In a nutshell, or perhaps an empty watermelon? No, maybe a carved out star. Yeah. That’s Dungeon Defenders. This action RPG tower defense has an abundance of content, variety, and polish; what do you know, the three spices of life!
Dungeon Defenders takes a semi-new approach to the tower defense genre, employing traditional elements like loot, leveling up, classes and towers while also changing the mentality up, advocating use of blockades at choke points and giving each class a different set of towers to summon as well as abilities. Of the four classes are the Apprentice, magic user employing high damage dealing elemental towers; the Squire, who takes the hordes with a sword while being backed by meaty blockades; the Huntress, with ranged weapon in hand and powerful multi-use traps; and lastly the Monk, support class extraordinaire, able to use both ranged and melee attacks and summon auras which apply affects or damage over a wide area. Levels are long and allow for up to four players with drop in and out coop local or online. Each level also has a challenge mission which presents distinct gameplay variations that force players to change their tactics, foregoing entire elements of the game or sometimes making them more important. The loot system is robust, allowing for set bonuses, rewarding players for playing on higher difficulty levels and with more people in their party. Mana gained during levels can be used to upgrade weapons, armor and pets.
There’s just so much in this game, it’s mind boggling.