Is Nine Inch Nails as super chuffed about Polybius as vice versa?

, | News

That’s the latest music video from Nine Inch Nails. The song is “Less Than” from the upcoming album ADD VIOLENCE. But hey! That game in the video looks familiar. It’s Polybius from Jeff Minter’s Llamasoft. Thanks to Nine Inch Nails front man Trent Reznor’s love of Llamasoft, there’s at least one non-PlayStation 4 build out in the wild. To have the game work for the video, Minter had to create an exclusive PC build of Polybius and give that to Reznor.

“Of course I was super chuffed to hear he’d liked our work, as I’ve enjoyed his a lot over the years too!”

Jeff Minter hopes to have a PC version of Polybius available for purchase in November when his exclusivity deal with PlayStation ends.

Your last chance to kill an elusive target in Hitman may be fast approaching

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Hitman’s final scheduled time-limited assassination, The Entertainer, will go live this Friday. Elusive Target 26 begins on July 14th and lasts for ten days. Everyone will get one chance to eliminate “Mr. Giggles” and steal a client list in the Marrakesh level, then Season One of Hitman’s live support ends. If it’s your first successful elusive target in Marrakesh, you’ll unlock the summer suit with gloves, a snappy cosmetic outfit for Agent 47. If you’ve attained a few of the previous elusive targets, you may unlock other outfits based on your progression.

What comes next for Hitman is anyone’s guess. Originally, IO Interactive had planned to create a Season Two of content for Hitman with new levels and targets as paid DLC, but that was back when the franchise and the studio were owned by Square Enix. Now that IO Interactive is an independent company, things are a bit dicey. Although they haven’t officially confirmed a Season Two for Hitman, the studio’s July update notes mentioned new content for August, indicating that they would be continuing to work on the game. Whether that means wholly new DLC content and not just live targets in the same maps remains to be seen.

Take on the scourges of avocado toast and ridesharing in Shakedown: Hawaii

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Shakedown: Hawaii, the next top-down open world action parody from Vblank Entertainment, is not Retro City Rampage 2. The developers want to make that distinction quite clear. You may still be crashing cars, killing folks, and generally acting like the nightmare Grand Theft Auto player Jack Thompson was trying to warn everyone about, but Shakedown: Hawaii puts a different spin on things by skewering millennial culture and the kinds of business decisions that made Juicero possible. One can only wonder just how topical the game will get based on this bit regarding the player character’s background.

Our anti-hero’s decision to spend more time on reality TV as a “CEO” personality, than as the actual CEO of his company didn’t help matters.

While there’s no release date yet for Shakedown: Hawaii, the game will be launching on Nintendo Switch, 3DS, PlayStation 4, PS Vita, and Steam when it does go live.

You’ll find Dynasty Feud at the deserted intersection of complicated and quick

, | Game reviews

Unfortunately, this game shares half a name with Duck Dynasty and half a name with Family Feud. And screenshots can’t do much to highlight what’s special about it. You’d look at it and think it’s wacky couch multiplayer no different than something like Move or Die. Chase each other around, jumping, punching, jumping, punching, jumping, punching.

This is what people do when they don’t have a Super Smash Bros. Continue reading →

There are no new clues about Half-Life 3 in the latest update to Half-Life

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Valve just updated Half-Life. The small patch addresses a couple of longstanding crash issues, and absolutely does not hide a clue about Half-Life 3 in the game. If you shimmy along the cliff level in Half-Life and look near the third stubby rock just before the helicopter fight, you will not find a hidden number code that leads to a web site with tantalizing clues embedded in a scrambled image of the G-Man. Just because Valve patched an almost twenty year old game does not mean anything fishy is going on. Do not bother looking for the reversed audio file of Gabe Newell ordering the next chapter of Gordon Freeman’s journey. It doesn’t exist.

If anyone finds anything suspicious, please contact your nearest Black Mesa Communications Liaison.

The ten best games of 2017 (so far) that you haven’t played yet

, | Features

At the halfway point through 2017, you don’t really need people to write articles about how they like Nier and Horizon Zero Dawn and Ghost Recon: Wildlands and that new Zelda game on the Nintendo Switch. Exactly no one will be surprised that we think some of these games are the bee’s knees. The more valuable public service is calling out the games you didn’t know about, but maybe you should. After all, you don’t want your 2017 games of the year list to look like an NPD sales chart, do you?

So for the next ten days, in no particular order, I’m going to tell you about ten different games that I think are the bee’s lesser known knees.

Let’s get started. Continue reading →

Caladrius Blaze is a real bodice ripper

, | Game reviews

Steam is lousy with shmups. Shoot-em-ups. Bullet hells. Call them what you will. Most are as forgettable as any other. Unless they’re made by Cave, a developer that puts some kind of magic pixie shmup dust in their games. Otherwise, if you’ve seen one shmup, you’ve seen them all.

But I keep coming back to Caladrius Blaze. Continue reading →

Archwing and chill in Warframe’s new instanced open-world areas

, | News

Digital Extremes has announced Landscapes for Warframe, hand-crafted open world instances with an MMO-style hub town with NPC quests and a day and night cycle. The first such area to be added to the game, Plains of Eidolon, features the village of Cetus where up to 50 players can freely roam, team-up, and take on Ostron scavenger quests in the surrounding countryside.

Players will be able to fly and fight from their Archwings and battle normal enemies in the wilderness during the day, but at night the colossal Eidolons rise from the ground to destroy Warframes. These giant baddies ape MMO boss monsters in that they will require coordinated groups of folks plinking away at their bodies to defeat them. Hit the giant enemy crabs in their weak spots!

Do your enemies in Shadow of Mordor hate you enough to show up in Shadow of War?

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Remember how much Grixsnak the Slayer wanted to kill you in Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor? Or how badly Turg Rattlebreak desired your head on a pike? Thanks to the free Nemesis Forge update for Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, those dirty rotten scoundrels can follow you to the upcoming sequel, Middle-earth: Shadow of War. Man, you must’ve really pissed off Hoog the Undying for him to travel all the way over to another game just to deal with you.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor is currently on sale for $4 on Steam, Xbox, and the PlayStation digital stores. Middle-earth: Shadow of War will launch on October 10th.

Horizon Zero Dawn gets all the makeup and pretty dresses players have been asking for

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The latest patch for Horizon Zero Dawn adds New Game+, an Ultra Hard difficulty, face paint, and new gear. The 1.30 update allows players to repeat their open-world adventures with Aloy, but retain their inventory and character level. It’s the perfect way to experience that story again! Although the level cap of 50 remains in place, the New Game+ option gives players the ability to challenge themselves against tougher enemies with the Ultra Hard difficulty option that players can enable before embarking on their quest. Guerrilla Games also announced that the 1.30 update adds new face paint for Aloy as well as more expensive versions of existing weapons and outfits. Sashay away Aloy!

Total War Saga is Creative Assembly’s bite-sized take on history

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Creative Assembly has announced Total War Saga, a spin-off series for more focused games about specific conflicts. Total War Saga games won’t cover new eras. Instead, the games will use assets featured in past titles like Rome or Empire, but they will drill down to an historical campaign. You’ll still have the grand strategic map and the real-time tactical battles. You’ll just be chasing a goal. Director Jack Lusted pointed to the Total War: Shogun 2 – Fall of the Samurai standalone expansion and its depiction of the Boshin War as an example.

They’re what I like to call table-flip moments in history, where events are in the balance and could go any number of interesting and unique ways. This makes them a perfect fit for Total War games, where we give players the freedom to depart from the actual historical events and explore what might have happened had things gone differently.

While the campaign hasn’t been revealed yet, Creative Assembly revealed that the first Total war Saga game will be a “spiritual follow-up” to Total War: Rome II.

It may not be Spider-Man 2, but this Spider-Man VR game is free

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Everyone is looking forward to Marvel’s Spider-Man on the PlayStation 4 from Insomniac Games. It’s got web-slinging, flip-kicks, zipping between skyscrapers, and most importantly, it has the quips you’d expect from Peter Parker. The only problem is that 2018 is a long way off. The good news is that there’s a new Spider-Man game available right now, and it’s free! The bad news is that you need a VR system to play it.

Spider-Man: Homecoming – Virtual Reality Experience may sound like a dubious edutainment attraction at Disney’s EPCOT Center, but its actually a VR game. Well, it’s less a game and more a 5-minute target practice tutorial and advertisement for the movie Spider-Man: Homecoming, but it’s free and you do get to swing a couple of disembodied hands around. Zap balloons! Pick up rooftop garbage and sling it around! Clumsily grab your mask and jostle it onto your VR head. It’s just like being a superhero!

Spider-Man: Homecoming – Virtual Reality Experience is available for PlayStation VR and PC VR through Steam.