, | News
quantum_break_aidan

Maybe you were one of the people that thought Quantum Break from Remedy Entertainment looked intriguing but you had no way to legitimately get it? Perhaps you didn’t own an Xbox One and buying the PC version was out of the question since it was a Windows Store exclusive. The myriad issues with the Universal Windows Platform application kept you from buying the mix of TV show and time-zapping shooter on PC, so you sighed and moved on. Faster than you can ask “Why is Littlefinger in this?” there’s a solution! Quantum Break: Timeless Collector’s Edition is coming to Steam on September 14th. There will even be a retail version produced with Nordic Games available for cavemen that like packaging.

As a bonus, both the retail and Steam digital versions of Quantum Break will have lower PC requirements than the UWP version.

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Stanley-Parable-Indiebox

The Stanley Parable came out almost two years ago, but it’s finally getting a boxed version fit for retail shelves. IndieBox is an outfit that specializes in taking independent games that typically don’t get a physical release, and packaging them for collectors to appreciate on their desktop. The titles get pressed onto discs and placed into an honest-to-goodness cardboard box with trinkets like we used to get back when stores carried PC games. We took the heady days of printed instructions and souvenir mouse pads for granted, but the IndieBox package for The Stanley Parable is an exquisite throwback to the kind of bland office productivity software appropriate for this game. There’s even a tie in the box, so you can roleplay as a cubicle drone.

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, | Movie reviews
Bronze_review

The Bronze, about a woman who was an Olympic gymnast as a child, tanked critically and commercially. Not because women aren’t funny, although that’s always an argument always worth revisiting so you can watch some really funny movies (Bridesmaids, Sisters, Election, The Heat, Afternoon Delight, Enough Said, Muriel’s Wedding, Opposite of Sex, Pitch Perfect, Sightseers, Your Sister’s Sister, Death Proof, etc.). The Bronze tanked because women aren’t supposed to be a certain kind of funny. They’re not allowed to be as vulgar or unlikeable as men. It’s as if there’s a crassness threshold that women can’t cross. Call it a crass ceiling. Not even the shrewdly subversive Amy Schumer could break through it. Her Trainwreck script and performance carefully implied drunkenness, promiscuity, and assholishness without getting too far outside the confines of a traditional studio romcom.

Melissa Rauch will have none of that nonsense. Her character in The Bronze, which she wrote, is the character Danny McBride has made a career playing (Foot Fist Way) and replaying (Eastbound and Down) and replaying again (Vice Principals): a vulgar, self-centered, bitter, unpleasant idiot running roughshod over decent people. Rauch and The Bronze wallow gleefully, unrepentantly, profanely, comfortably in the same gutter. When her father — another meticulously underplayed Gary Cole performance — threatens to cut off her allowance, she barks, “If you cut off my allowance, I’m going to have to suck dicks in the CostCo bathroom for money.” But she’s not done. Where Danny McBride might lapse into inarticulate mumblecore, The Bronze’s athletic vulgarity sticks the landing. “Is that what you want, dad? You want me to suck on dirty dicks in a discount warehouse toilet?” If it wasn’t so raunchy, it would be poetic. Rauch twists her face into a mask of appalled rage to sell it. I hold up a little card that says 8.7. But she’s just getting warmed up.

Support Qt3 and watch The Bronze on Amazon.com.

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Monolith

No Man’s Sky, the highly anticipated space exploration game, launches in a few days and despite dozens of leaks from streamers buying the game early, people are still confused about the game’s activities. Part of the mystery can be blamed on No Man’s Sky itself, which as it turns out, is incomplete on the retail disc. People that snapped up the game being sold at outlets before it was officially supposed to be on shelves have been playing without the benefit of an extensive day one patch. Beyond that, the lingering question of “What is it all about?” has plagued the game since its initial reveal. Is it an aimless pastel-colored space vacation? An interstellar combat survival-thon? According to Hello Games’ studio head, Sean Murray, it’s probably not what most people think it’s going to be.

It’s a weird game, it’s a niche game and it’s a very very chill game.

No Man’s Sky and chill.

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, | Game reviews
Abzu_review

I shouldn’t expect Aquanaut’s Holiday, but I can’t help myself. Drop me into a virtual ocean and I’m going to remember that game’s open-world wonder from a time before open-world was even a thing. It was 1995. It was a Playstation. And not a Playstation One, because there was no such thing. The Playstation 2, 3, and 4 didn’t exist yet. Just a Playstation. It was Japanese, which might explain why it didn’t feel the need to be an actual game. It was instead a virtual ocean released at a time when you couldn’t go online and Google search a forum to start a thread called “uh, what am i supposed to be doing in here anyway?” So I spent most of my time in Aquanaut’s Holiday wondering what was going to happen, if anything, and not particularly minding that nothing was happening because it was so weirdly hypnotic. Relaxing. Sometimes eerie. Years later I would discover you could build a reef to attract fish or something. I suppose that’s gameplay, but it’s nothing I ever figured out.

After the jump, what game are we talking about again? Continue reading →

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Stellaris_plant_pack

Paradox has been trying to tidy up some of the shortcomings of Stellaris with a series of patches named after science fiction writers. Asimov has been released and Clarke is under way. Given the work the design needs, I’m holding out for, I dunno, maybe Vonnegut? No earlier than Shatner, at any rate. But the ongoing patchwork won’t deter Paradox from selling DLC in the meantime. The first set of DLC is the Plantoids Species Pack for $8. It sounds like it might add some cool factions to a game whose factions aren’t cool, because they aren’t even factions (they’re randomly rolled sets of traits given nonsense names). So let’s take a look at what you get for your $8.

Fifteen new species portraits
New templates for plantoid civilian and military ships
New cityscape art

Oh. So, just plant artwork? Well what’s this that’s already in the base game?

Stellaris_mushrooms

Wait, those are fungoids. How could I confuse the two? Stellaris fans have already gotten the mushroom treatment.

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, | News

Big Robot, the studio behind Sir, You Are Being Hunted, has announced The Signal From Tolva. It’s an open world first-person game centered on exploration and combat. Unlike Sir, You Are Being Hunted, the objective isn’t hiding from robots and the world isn’t procedurally generated. Big Robot’s previous game was strong on visuals and flavor, but the gameplay was hampered by repetitive scavenging and traversal, so here’s hoping that this next game makes the back and forth less of a pain. One of the more intriguing elements revealed in The Signal From Tolva is the faction gameplay that sounds a bit more meaty.

The game world is driven by AI activity that decides where our robots will go, and what they will decide to do. Bots will head out from bunkers to survey crash sites or attack neighbouring bunkers or guard locations. Territory control battles kick off dynamically, with patrolling AI squads skirmishing against each other and taking control of a series of brutalist locations across the planet’s craggy valleys. Battles erupt with or without the player’s intervention, and their consequences can change the course of play by clearing ambushes and capturing or losing vital bunkers that allow for respawning and re-equipping as you play.

The Signal From Tolva will launch in early 2017 on Windows PC and OSX.

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ark_fittest

Ark: Survival of the Fittest, the free-to-play competitive multiplayer spinoff of Ark: Survival Evolved, is being folded back into the main game. Studio Wildcard announced the change of plans on Monday, saying the project needed to be reintegrated into the production cycle of Ark: Survival Evolved. The developers also cited the growing support expense and technical expertise needed for a free-to-play title as other reasons for the move.

Ultimately, it’s clear this is not who we are, we like to make games, and to make the gameplay fun. We don’t know much about monetization, and quite frankly we aren’t interested in hiring an economics team to take over that process, it is much more in our and your best interest for Wildcard to solely focus on the development of a game.

Ark: Survival of the Fittest has struggled since its launch in March. Technical issues, poor balance, and shoddy gameplay have been common complaints about the spinoff. Players used to other popular free-to-play games have accused Studio Wildcard of neglecting the game in favor of their bigger project. Survival of the Fittest will continue to exist as a game mode within Ark: Survival Evolved, but it’s unclear what will happen to the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of the free-to-play game. According to the announcement, the console versions are being placed “on hold” while the developers figure out what to do.

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, | Game reviews
Inside_review

Sometimes you pay a price when you write reviews for people who’ve already played a game. That price is people who look to reviews to decide what they’re going to play. Where will they spend their time or money? But if I’m going to critique Inside based on what I know after I’ve played it, and if the majority of Inside’s appeal is discovery, I can’t tell you much without compromising your experience with the game.

In other words, there will be spoilers.

But first, I have three things I want to tell people who haven’t played Inside.

After the jump, don’t worry, it’s safe to keep reading! Continue reading →

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disney_end

It’s only been a couple of months since Disney announced their intent to cease direct videogame creation outside of browser and mobile games, but they’ve already laid out the schedule for Disney Infinity’s slow death. In a post on the official page, The Walt Disney Company has detailed exactly how all your toy DLC purchases will become obsolete. Effective immediately, the PC Steam, Android, iOS, and Amazon versions of the Disney Infinity are disconnected from the in-game store. On September 30th, these versions will be shut out completely and all online features will be dead. Console versions of Disney Infinity will continue to operate as normal until March 3rd, 2017. On that final date, all the servers for the game will be turned off and it will only be playable as an offline experience.

The good news for collectors is that the figures are being sold off with steep discounts by many retailers. Get that Yondu figure while you can.

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mega-drive3

People seem pretty jazzed by the Nintendo Entertainment System Classic system, the inexpensive throwback hardware that’s coming in November, so reports of a similar system from Sega are just as exciting. Unfortunately, while the idea of Sega jumping back into making console hardware sounds awesome, it’s nothing but an illusion. The plug and play Mega Drive Classic Game Console that’s been floating around social media for the past couple of days is manufactured under license by Chinese firm AtGames and is a revamp of their Sega Genesis Classic Console that’s been around for years. (They also manufacture the Atari Flashback console.) While AtGames’ console recreations basically do what they advertise, reviews suggest somewhat sloppy performance thanks to some slapdash emulation. In short, if you want classic Sega games on real Sega hardware, check out the thrift stores.

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, | Game reviews
Quadrialteral_Cowboy_review

There’s a bit of The Witness in Quadrilateral Cowboy. Just a tiny bit. The Witness is a game about teaching you how to play The Witness. Period. Full stop. Quadrilateral Cowboy is, at times, a game about teaching you how to play Quadrilateral Cowboy. Dot, dot, dot.

After the jump, I promise you won’t read the word “heuristics” because this isn’t that kind of review. Continue reading →

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