Sunday, 31 December 2017

December in Review

The Site

Welcome to the 350th and likely last post here for 2017.  I mean, unless there is some dramatic news like Daybreak announcing EverQuest III, this is pretty much it for the year.

For this section I will drop in a bonus, end-of-year list just because I like lists.  In this case, the list is of the five most popular posts from the site in 2017 with a little commentary as to why I think they topped the list.

1From Alola Pokedex to National Pokedex in Pokemon Sun

This is just a strange aspect of Pokemon Sun & Moon… and UltraSun & UltraMoon… in that, unlike past versions of the game, there is no National Pokedex to unlock.  As the post notes, Nintendo wants you to track that through the Pokemon Bank app, which is good in that it keeps track across multiple games, but bad because you cannot actually access it to see what you’re missing without going into Pokemon Bank.  Basically, people Google to try and find the National Pokedex and end up ere.

2April Fools at Blizzard 2017 – Not Much to Talk About

Google was kind to me for some reason this year.  Unlike the other posts on the list, which were spread out over the course of the year, this one had 90% of its traffic over three days.

3Alamo teechs u 2 play DURID!

This one pops up on Reddit every once in a while, but with the announcement of WoW Classic it suddenly started showing up a lot more frequently.  Nostalgia for the win.

4Where the Hell is that EverQuest Successor Already?

I have no idea why this one gets the constant drip, drip, drip of traffic, other than the oft broached idea that there is a market out there for a successor to the now classic Diku MUD translation to a 3D world.

5At the Camp in 68FT-6

I think this one just gets people coming for the LOL picture.

Bubble arrangement for the win

Anyway, that is one more bit of 2017 blog trivia here on the last day of the year.

One Year Ago

As happens every December, I reviewed my predictions for the year, assessed the highs and lows, and made some attempt at a gaming outlook for 2017.  For the last I was feeling somewhat adrift… which turned out to be right on the money for most of 2017!

At Daybreak we found out that Russel Shanks had been replaced as CEO.  Still not sure what changed with that, if anything.

A little later former Daybreak CEO John Smedley announced the end of Hero’s Song and PixelMage Games.

Meanwhile Turbine was losing Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online to a spin-off called Standing Stone GamesAsheron’s Call and Asheron’s Call 2 were to be closed and Turbine was slated to become solely a maker of mobile games.  Standing Stone Games also had some deal with Daybreak, they were even mentioned in the EULA, so maybe that was what changed.

In New Eden we had Blog Banter #78 which asked the pwipe question about EVE Online.

Then there was the rumor that CCP might be up for sale for ONE BILLION DOLLARS!  I followed that up with my thoughts as to what would happen to EVE Online if certain companies bought CCP.  EA, for example, would end up shutting down the game and closing the studio, if history is any guide.

I also listed out what I felt were the top five problems with EVE Online, then added a bonus item, because EVE is like that.

There was also the traditional Yoiul gifts, if the launcher would let you into the game and the last update for YC118, which included music.

Then there was null sec, where I was celebrating my fifth anniversary.  Down in Delve we managed to lose 600 billion ISK on our own cyno beacon.

In space the war in Tribute was heating up.  Asher led us up there to shoot targets of opportunity in M-OEE8 as Pandemic Legion and friends contested the timer on CO2’s Keepstar.  That was also the second day that the PCU passed 50K since the Ascension expansion.  I went back north on my own to be there for the death of that Keepstar.  The heralded the exit of TEST and CO2 from the north.

That in turn led to the opening of a Winter war down south, a war that eventually fizzled when the participants decided nobody wanted to fight a Fozzie Sov war, so new boundaries were negotiated instead.

Reavers went out to help one side in a structure fight in Catch and went to join in on yet another Keepstar fight.  That one survived but another one got popped.

I was mucking around a bit in EverQuest II, trying to find my way in new content.

In Minecraft my mansion road project required the application of TNT to blast a road through a jungle.  Minecraft also had nice packages and Skronk made me a cobblestone generator for Christmas.

And no December would be complete without a Steam Winter Sale, and no such sale would be worth its name without issues!

I didn’t notice it at the time, but a German gaming site called Plarium put me on their list of the 8 best MMO blogs.  Of course they also put Tobold, who doesn’t actually write about MMOs anymore and Tipa of West Karana, who hasn’t been updating for a while now, and themselves, which seems like a bit of ego, but still it was cool to find.  Also, it was probably a year and a half ago, but I just found it recently so I’m going to pretend the date is in US format because then I can mention it here.

Finally I was going on about companies making MMOs… and the people playing them… feeling that every single title had to be all things to all people, leading to dissolute efforts and titles that do a lot of things but don’t really stand out in any particular aspect.  Just because YOU like housing doesn’t mean every MMORPG absolutely HAS to have housing dammit. (Sorry Syp.)

Five Years Ago

I wrote a post looking at 50 years of James Bond.  It included ranked lists for people to argue about.

There was my standard Highs & Lows post for the year gone by, and I reviewed my questions for 2012.

Turbine announced that they were bringing back Asheron’s Call 2.  That ended up going mostly wrong in the end.

I was deep into my World of Tanks binge.  I was up to the KV-2 on the Soviet heavy line, choosing that path after the three way split at the KV-1. (And the T-28.)  I was also still working on the German tank destroyer line.

We were having a bit of fun in Need for Speed: World.  I even made a holiday video.

In Rift we were having some trouble getting a full group together, so we were doing some lower level instances as a group of four.  I was also struggling with the whole dimension thing.

Gaff and I took a quick peek into EverQuest II.  Nostalgia didn’t last long.  I also took a one-time shot at Wizardy Online.  It just wasn’t a game for me, but not every game has to be.

I was looking back on a year in null sec in EVE Online.  The Retribution expansion went live.  Also I hit 90 million skill points.

I crammed together all the ads I could find from the EVE Online splash screen.  The then new launcher killed off those ads… sort of.  They’re just elsewhere now, but not so easy to screen shot.

Ten Years Ago

December 2007 seemed to be a busy time for the SOE.  First there was the whole “moving a whole guild from test to a live server” brouhaha.  Then there was the rumor of SOE being purchased by Zapak Digital Entertainment.  And, finally, there was the deal with Live Gamer to take over transactions on the Station Exchange servers, at which time Smed himself said that this did not mean that they were going to open the flood gates of RMT on any of their servers not currently served by SOE’s own Station Exchange RMT plan.  All of which I wrapped up in one post.

Another EverQuest Nostalgia Tour was off to the usual activities, including grousing about keyboard settings.

I put up my predictions for the “Next EverQuest II Expansion,” the whole “predicting Kunark” thing from the year before having gone to my head.  I was also looking at crafting after the Rise of Kunark expansion shipped.  I hit level 61 and then 62, but I wouldn’t get much further for a long time.  And I was looking at shrunken owlbears and trolling in Darklight Woods.

The Saturday Night Instance Group was in World of Warcraft and finishing up Blackrock Depths.  This was back in the days where you didn’t just run an instance in 15 minutes with some strangers then queue up again in dungeon Finder for the next one.  Our first run got us through the detention block, our second run got us to Lord Incendius, and our third run finally finished off the instance and got us on our way to Marshall Windsor and Lady Prestor.  That was basically four Saturday nights dealing with one instance.  Good times.

I was also happy about a feature of the WoW Armory.

Dr. Richard Bartle brought up the “why so much fantasy” question for its regular beating to death.

was interviewed over at World IV.  That was back when I was somebody I guess.  At least somebody worth interviewing.

I was annoyed at Lord of the Rings Online, which was updating a lot of files and killing my video card, but still wasn’t giving me a horse.

lost my first battlecruiser to pirates in EVE Online.  Meanwhile, after pissing away a lot of ISK on invention, I was not getting a lot of results.

We also got the Trinity expansion, which had some issue… like deleting the boot.ini file on people’s drives.  #NeverForget

CCP was also telling people to get out of Jita, it already having grown to be the trade hub of New Eden.  A couple of jumps over in Hageken somebody built one of the first space designs I had seen.

I bought a new gaming computer full of Quad Core goodness.

X-Fire was still a thing and putting out stats about what their users were playing, including MMOs.  EVE Online figured on the list, as it did on the F13.net poll about MMOs.

There was a Duke Nukem Forever trailer, just six years after the last one.  The game still wouldn’t come out until 2011 and remains the yardstick for delay to which even Chris Roberts may still aspire.

And the best selling PC games of 2007 were:

  1. World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade
  2. The Sims 2: Seasons
  3. Command & Conquer 3
  4. The Sims 2: Bon Voyage
  5. Supreme Commander
  6. Lord of the Rings Online: The Shadows of Angmar
  7. The Orange Box
  8. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  9. BioShock
  10. The Sims 2: H&M Fashion Stuff

Twenty Years Ago

Quake II launched, which I recall being mildly controversial and leading to a Quake vs. Quake II division in the community.

The Pokemon anime episode Cyber Soldier Porygon aired, causing hundreds of kids to have seizures due to the rapidly flashing animation.

Also my wife let her recently laid off boyfriend… me… move in with her for reasons I still don’t quite understand.  Any objective outside observer who had ever seen my apartment would have called it a bad idea I am sure.  Also, I had a cat.  An unemployed man with a cat.  What was she thinking?

Forty Years Ago

The Atari 2600 was on store shelves everywhere and I got one for Christmas.

Most Viewed Posts in December

  1. From Alola Pokedex to National Pokedex in Pokemon Sun
  2. Where the Hell is that EverQuest Successor Already?
  3. Alamo teechs u 2 play DURID!
  4. Elf
  5. Top 25 EVE Online Corporations Graph – The End Number
  6. Reviewing My 2017 MMO Outlook – What The Hell Happened?
  7. The Demise of BattleClinic
  8. Reviewing My 2017 Predictions
  9. Flying Unlocked in Legion
  10. A Tipping Point for My Time in New Eden
  11. Feature Creep – On The Cost of Making Video Games
  12. Yule Lads Tell Players to Work for Their Damn Yoiul Gifts

Search Terms of the Month

best heroic character everquest
[Aradune?]

eve online grinding sucks
[It you think you’re grinding, it probably sucks in any game]

rift cancel subscription
[I did that quite a while back]

does tetris speed up
[You have never played Tetris I would guess]

plex online
[That’s what some people call it]

daybreak legends what the hell is ap
[No idea man]

EVE Online

I was in for our northern deployment and managed to get on some fun ops.  We blew up some stuff… and got blown up ourselves.  Still, I have four kill marks on surviving ships from these ops and only lost three ships, so that means I win right?

On the Yoiul end of things I remained surprised that CCP was intent on making us work for our presents.  I suspected they would relent and give us something for logging in on the 25th, but no such luck.

Pokemon Go

This month saw the release of the third generation Pokemon into the wild after getting a tease at Halloween.  That meant new Pokemon to catch and evolve.  Also, for the first time ever, I saw a Lapras out in the wild… and then used the wrong berry on it and it fled after I threw the first Pokeball.  So I still do not have a Lapras.  But with the new generation there have been plenty of other Pokemon to catch.  The stats this month:

  • Level: 30 (+0)
  • Pokedex status: 239 (+29) caught, 274 (+37) seen
  • Pokemon I want: Slowbro
  • Current buddy: Slowpoke to earn candies to evolve him… true to his name, this is going slow

Steam

There was a sale.  I haven’t purchased anything… yet.  There is still time though.

World of Warcraft

I unlocked flying and started working on some alts and have been doing a lot of pet battles and collecting and such.  I even managed to get that fox kit in Northrend that only spawns when it is snowing.

Coming Up

A Brand new year.  Some crazy ass predictions are already queued up for tomorrow’s post.  Stay tuned to see what I think 2018 might bring.  And I did an MMO Outlook post as well.  Then we’ll get back to the usual routine.

In EVE Online CCP seems intent on killing off the current, reliable Agent Finder feature in favor of something that mostly works in The Agency window.  People have voiced concern in response to this, but CCP has not acknowledged any of it.  Press on regardless… who needs to find more than a dozen agents anyway?

Actually playing the game I suspect our northern deployment will carry on.  The locals are getting serious about us having dropped a Fortizar on grid with our staging station in NPC null.

In WoW the pet battle crusade will continue.  I think I have managed to scoop up just about all of the caught or easily obtained battle pets.  It is probably time to turn to the “raiding with leashes” achievements to get some more of the raid pet drops.  I’ll need to clear out my bags for that.

The Steam Winter Sale will wrap up soon.  As of this moment I have not purchased a single title, but I still have time.

Otherwise it looks to be more of the same, with Kickstarter projects delaying or failing to deliver, early access cash grabs falling apart, loot boxes for everything, and nothing new or exciting under the sun.



from The Ancient Gaming Noob http://ift.tt/2zUlcNV

Review: The Last Blade (Switch eShop / Neo Geo)

Review: Review: The Last Blade (Switch eShop / Neo Geo)

The king of fighters?



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2CuaYXh

Spellforce 3 Review

Retro-Bit Announces R-Type Returns For Super Nintendo

News: Retro-Bit Announces R-Type Returns For Super Nintendo

Irem's Holy Diver also making a comeback on NES



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2lymuJl

Steam Winter Sale 2017 Continues! Plus, Vote For The Steam Awards!

The Steam Winter Sale continues today, through January 4th!* Save big on thousands of games for Windows, Mac and Linux!



Be sure to vote in The Steam Awards! Come back every day through January 2nd to vote for each award, and find out the winners on January 3rd.

Voting continues today with The "Whoooaaaaaaa, Dude! 2.0" Award. Here are the finalists:

Antichamber


CPU Invaders


Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number


Luna


The Evil Within 2


Remember to check back every day to see the new category and cast your vote!

*Discounts end January 4th at 10pm Pacific, unless otherwise indicated.

from Steam RSS News Feed http://ift.tt/2DEBddf

ATOM RPG Free Download

ATOM RPG Free Download PC Game setup in single direct link for Windows. ATOM RPG is an amazing RPG and Early access game.
ATOM RPG PC Game 2017 Overview
ATOM RPG is a post-apocalyptic indie game, inspired by classic CRPGs: Fallout, Wasteland, System Shock, Deus Ex, Baldur’s Gate and many [...]

The post ATOM RPG Free Download appeared first on Ocean of Games.



from Ocean of Games http://ift.tt/2BZDQWl

Review: Hiragana Pixel Party (Switch eShop)

Review: Review: Hiragana Pixel Party (Switch eShop)

Rōmaji rhythm runner



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2Cj29mw

Site News: Thanks For Playing, Thomas Whitehead

Site News: Site News: Thanks For Playing, Thomas Whitehead

Nobody likes goodbyes



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2Elq2ap

Feature: The 2017 Nintendo Life Game of the Year Awards

Feature: Feature: The 2017 Nintendo Life Game of the Year Awards

You know the top two already, right?



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2zSRdWE

Feature: Memorable Games of 2017 - Party Golf

Feature: Feature: Memorable Games of 2017 - Party Golf

Bringing multiplayer to the fore



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2q0IH8h

Eurogamer's games of 2017: The big debate

You've read Eurogamer's games of 2017 list, but how did we settle on the top 10? A mixture of science and alcohol, it turns out.

Our top 50 games list was compiled via a voting process. Eurogamer staff and contributors were asked to submit their top 10 games of 2017, and points were distributed accordingly. This process provided us with an initial top 50.

Then, we all popped along to our local here in Brighton to thrash it out, with a particular focus on the top 10. We thought it would be fun to let our dear readers in on the chat (complete with all the swearing - apologies for our filthy mouths).

Read more…



from Eurogamer.net http://ift.tt/2CuDCYu

Deep Sky Derelicts Free Download

Deep Sky Derelicts Free Download PC Game setup in single direct link for Windows. It is an amazing indie, RPG and Strategy game.
Deep Sky Derelicts PC Game 2017 Overview
In a grim dystopian future, where mankind has scattered across the galaxy and the human society has split into two distinct [...]

The post Deep Sky Derelicts Free Download appeared first on Ocean of Games.



from Ocean of Games http://ift.tt/2CnH2P3

Saturday, 30 December 2017

Gun Club VR Free Download

Gun Club VR Free Download PC Game setup in single direct link for Windows. It is an amazing action, indie and simulation game.
Gun Club VR PC Game 2017 Overview
Take to the range with an arsenal of the world’s most powerful weaponry in Gun Club VR. Addictive gameplay and unsurpassed realism combine [...]

The post Gun Club VR Free Download appeared first on Ocean of Games.



from Ocean of Games http://ift.tt/2CueEbQ

Enter the Gungeon Has Been a Sales Success on the Switch eShop

News: Enter the Gungeon Has Been a Sales Success on the Switch eShop

"Surpassing all expectations"



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2CkNDdg

Switch Hackers Declare That a Homebrew Launcher Will Be Available 'Soon'

News: Switch Hackers Declare That a Homebrew Launcher Will Be Available 'Soon'

Detail given on how the hack was discovered



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2Cli6b0

Switch Hackers Declare That Homebrew Launcher Will Be Available 'Soon'

News: Switch Hackers Declare That Homebrew Launcher Will Be Available 'Soon'

Detail given on how the hack was discovered



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2BVSrCb

Feature: We Learn More About the Ambitious 'Cycle Across Kanto' Pokémon Documentary

Feature: Feature: We Learn More About the Ambitious 'Cycle Across Kanto' Pokémon Documentary

"I love that developers find inspiration from the world around them"



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2Em8U4s

Daredevil Race

Ranger Gama drew Asher in the Theta Squad Secret Santa gift exchange, so his problem immediately became, “What do you get the 23rd best FC in the Imperium?”

He decided to get Asher a Reavers event since Theta just krabs in Delve day and night I suppose.

The event was to be a frigate race.  The route and frigate type were to be announced at the time of the race when Ranger Gama would hand them out.  He imported ten frigates, one for himself, one for Asher, and eight more for whoever showed up in time to claim one.

The planned time for the race was delayed on a couple of occasions, which worked out for me as I happened to sit down at my desk just after Asher pinged Reavers to let them know it was on.  I was in soon enough to claim one of the frigates, which turned out to be a Daredevil, a Serpentis faction frigate.

Me being me, I quickly logged an alt into Jita to buy a SKIN because I just can’t undock anymore without one.  The Glacial Drift SKIN was available and cheap, but then I saw some of the Serpentis Victory SKINs listed as well.  Those were given away as part of Alliance Tournament XV.  They were much more pricey, going for over 300 million ISK, but also more rare.  So I picked up one of those and contracted it to myself and activated it.

Daredevil in the hangar with a new SKIN

The race was originally going to be a point-to-point run, but Asher suggested something to make it more interesting… or dangerous… or both… so the instructions were updated in the fleet MOTD.

The route, with one five minute stop

Each of the ships had a name for the occasion.  I ended up with the ship named “In.”

We undocked our frigates and met up on a citadel in ROIR.  From there the race began.

The frigates themselves were setup for speed, capable of well over 5km/sec with the included faction MWD burning.  Otherwise, as you can see from one of the Daredevils that got caught, there was a bit of shielding and some festival launchers armed with fireworks to use along the way.

Festival Launchers on the ship

As we flew off Apple Pear showed up and was given a ship.  Only seven had been handed out so he started off a few gates behind us.  Given that the route was static and everybody was warping at the same speed he needed some hostile intervention to help his cause.

The rest of us warped along towards the first destination.

Daredevil in warp

This was where I started to have problems.  I was up with the leaders when one of our cats managed to get himself caught in the handle of a shopping bag which was hooked over the door across the hall from me and began to thrash wildly, seeming more likely to harm himself via that than anything the bag would do.  I dropped my headset, grabbed him, lifted him up to take off any strain, then calmed him for a bit before slipping his head out and letting him run off.  He was okay and I had my daughter dispose of the bag, but now I was behind the pack, though still out in front of Apple Pear.  At least I was still alive, having sat uncloaked on a gate for a bit.

Then I ran into another issue.  When we arrived in JU-OWQ in Deklein, my auto-pilot route sent me back the way we came to get to C4C-Z4.  I still do not understand why, as I checked later and did not see any systems anywhere close by on my avoid list.  So I passed by Apple Pear going the other way, made it through CCP-US, where he had reported a gate camp on both gates, and on towards Fade.

Fortunately there was nothing in the rules about the route, just the requirement to hit the specified waypoints, so that my route differed from the route everybody else took didn’t matter.

Some space maps with routes

Well, it did matter a bit.  My route was two jumps longer, but it turned out to be a bit safe as Asher and the rest of the pack ran into some trouble, with two Daredevils getting popped in K4YZ-Y.  I made it to C4C without incident, but was easily 3 minutes behind Asher, Ranger Gama, and Norgraad. I warped on grid with the Keepstar and started burning away from it and the few carriers that had fighters out to try and nab us.

On grid with the PH Keepstar

Asher and Ranger Gama seemed to do okay, but Norgraad managed to get popped by the locals, though gamely carried on in his pod.  They warped off, heading to the next waypoint while I lingered on grid watching the stopwatch on my iPhone slowly count off the minutes.  The leaders were reporting some people waiting for them ahead, but by the time I was able to warp off towards the next destination they seemed to have given up.  I left Apple Pear behind on the Keepstar grid and went in chase of the leaders.

While there was mutterings on coms about the dangers ahead, they were often vague, like the leaders did not want to help those chasing them catch up.  But it didn’t really matter.  The only hope I had of catching up was to warp straight from gate to gate and just hope to crash or burn past any gate camp.  So off I went.

Fortunately for myself an Apple Pear, the path through was pretty sparsely populated.  At least that was fortunate for us as far as staying alive went.  It also meant that there wasn’t much to slow down Asher or Ranger Gama or even Norgraad in his pod.  Norgraad’s slow warps mean I was able to pass him at least.  He got caught in Cloud Ring while I burned on.

The Cloud Ring nebula

The only real peril for me was at the Alsavoinon gate in F7C-H0.  There, on the boarder between null sec and low was the expected camp with a bubble setup.  I landed straight in it and the campers were slow enough to react to my arrival that I thought I might make it through to the gate unscathed.  However, burning in as fast as I did I hit the gate and bounced off it so far that I had to burn in again.  I took some damage, dropping to half shields, as I made my way back to the gate again, but got through and was on my way.

Low sec space posed no threat and it wasn’t until the path brought me back into null sec that I ran into some additional trouble.  There was a drag bubble in EWOK-K on the O-N8XZ gate that pulled me out of warp shy of the gate.

Burning to the gate again

However, no hostiles were minding the store and a lone TNT pilot was plinking away at the bubble to take it down.  I would have joined in to help… Asher and Ranger Gama were already over the finish line… but fireworks don’t do much.  After that it was just a few more empty gates and I was over the finish line myself.  There I burned over to Asher and Ranger Gama and joined in the shooting of fireworks.

Apple Pear showed up after a bit, followed by Elisha Okaski, who made it all the way from K4YZ-Y in his pod, earning him a special commendation.

For my third place finish I won a free ship of the line for whatever Asher’s next Reavers doctrine ends up being, mostly because Ranger Gama was the organizer so counted himself and Asher out of the contest.  Elisha Okaski will get a ship as well for persevering through most of the race in a pod.

I handed Ranger Gama back my ship so he could use them for some future event and thanked him for setting this up and, of course, declaring me one of the prize winners.  We’ll have to see what the next doctrine ends up being.

That was probably my last op of the year.  Below some screen shots of us shooting fireworks.  We had to turn the MWDs off as the ships were otherwise outrunning the launchers.



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Steam Winter Sale 2017 Continues! Plus, Vote For The Steam Awards!

The Steam Winter Sale continues today, through January 4th!* Save big on thousands of games for Windows, Mac and Linux!



Be sure to vote in The Steam Awards! Come back every day through January 2nd to vote for each award, and find out the winners on January 3rd.

Voting continues today with The "Soul of Vitruvius" Award. Here are the finalists:

Bayonetta


Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice


I am Bread


NieR: Automata


Rise of the Tomb Raider


Remember to check back every day to see the new category and cast your vote!

*Discounts end January 4th at 10pm Pacific, unless otherwise indicated.

from Steam RSS News Feed http://ift.tt/2CsyeVM

Developers Share Their Favorite Games Of 2017

devgoty1.jpg
2017 has been a banner year for videogames, with many successful and important titles getting released throughout the year. Instead of presenting you our favorite 2017 games, we asked developers which titles resonated with them instead. Their answers are once again testament to the richness and diversity that independent games have to offer. If 2018 will only be half as good, we're in for quite a ride!

Jay Tholen (@jaytholen):
"Rex: Another Island was my indie pick for 2017. It's a solidly designed 'open world' (it has one really huge level with warp points) platformer in which you play as an adorable pink dinosaur exploring an island with diverse biomes. Games of the 'difficult platformer' variety don't normally do this for me, but Rex was therapeutically relaxing and I want to go hang out in its world again just thinking about it."

Sam Luangkhot (@flarechess):
"Really loved Brianna Lei 's Butterfly Soup VN for a lighthearted and touching story that has now become close to my heart. It's so rare to find content that is made BY someone like you ABOUT people like you, which makes the game all the more endearing to me."

Omar Cornut (@ocornut), Lizardcube:
"Fidel Dungeon Rescue - I thought it was brilliantly designed, there are lots of subtleties with how to deal with the monsters, the game lets you discover and understand them by experimenting (much like The Witness did), and it doesn't have an invasive tutorial.
It's also a game that makes it clear that you can't "perfect" a level, you have to go with the flow and try to do the best you can, alternating moments of slow experimentation with moments where you have to save yourself and play a more risky and instinctive game. I think this is what the Ghost conveyed, you have to move on, don't try to perfect a level too much. Like the typical rogue like, it's not about a given level but about your ability to do well enough under always varying conditions."

devgoty2.jpg

Christian Miller (@SilvrSpookGames), Silver Spook Games:
"Tacoma - The way that the story was told, through AR recordings, bits of news and text littered around this space station was reminiscent of System Shock, but with its own innovative spin. The story is pretty short but well told with a lot of reversed expectations and sci-fi delightfulness generally."

Byron Atkinson-Jones (@xiotex):
"For me it's Doctor Kvorak's Obliteration Game by Freekstorm - the reason why is because I know the developer and saw the love and attention that went into that game. They were not only really passionate about their craft but the most wonderful people you could meet.
It resonated with me because I saw myself in them - trying to make a success in this brutally difficult industry. Doing everything they could within their means to make their game a success, just like I and all the other indie devs I know do."

Michael Rader (@raderm), Theory of Games:
"I love Tooth and Tail's minimalist approach to the RTS genre. Feels like a throwback and an evolution simultaneously. I've also gotten super addicted to Oxygen Not Included, even though it's still in Early Access. I love the interplay of automation vs manual control, and the complex-yet-transparent mechanic design."

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Alexander Formoso (@Alexformosoc), Bohemia Interactive:
"Dead Cells doesn't have a deep story that touches the depths of human nature and so on. It's a simple 2D Roguelite Metroidvania, much like this year's Hollow Knight, which is also fantastic. But the difference with Dead Cells is that it compresses the play sessions in 10 minute runs. Every time you play, your character gets stronger, and you can get farther away, but since its stronger, you breeze through the beginning sections with reduced chances of getting harmed.
It sports phenomenal pixel art, fluid as hell combat, funny and responsive animations and super juicy effects. For a Dark Souls fiend like me, it feels like they found an amazing spot in the formula. THIS is the "Dark Souls in portable mode" that I've been wanting to play on commutes and lunchbreaks."

Louise Chamberlain (@LouiseWooeez), Triangular Pixel:
"Night in the Woods - its pessimistic/dark/humourous narrative really touched that cynical, teenage part of me that still lives on deep down! It's also beautiful."

Matthieu Richez (@cccpingu), CCCP:
"This year, the indie game that resonated the most with me would be Kitfox Games' The Shrouded Isle. A simple, short yet hard, compacted intriguing experience that really itches my game designer skills. The mechanics are subtle, board game like, when you play the game as a game designer you say to yourself: "ah! That's a game I could almost do on my own!" and at the same time "Gosh, that is clever!" It made me think a lot about new, small concepts, and made me nervous about my own skills as a designer to put on paper something so focused and in line with a cool, innovative theme like that."

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Talha Kaya (@taloketo), Kayabros:
"Dujanah is my favorite indie game of this year. It is courageous in how it handles the serious themes while maintaining the absolutely punk, crazy and colorful style throughout. It is a game that truly embodies the vision of its developer and does not yield to anything less. It exists against all odds of this industry and we are lucky to have it."

Megan Fox (@glassbottommeg), Glass Bottom Games:
"Both Heat Signature and Streets of Rogue hit this free-form action sweet spot for me that I haven't seen done this well in, maybe ever? I'm hard pressed to think of another action game like this with as much breadth of choice as you've got in both. Bounce the wrench off the guy's head then grab your target and slam him into space, leaving him to suffocate, while you last-minute grab yourself with your own spaceship? Yeah, sure, that works. Become an ape, free your own kind, and fight an army of soldiers with nothing but a pile of bananas (and access to a cloning machine to bolster your ape army), all to steal a baseball that will fund yet more ape cloning? Yep, that works too. I'll leave it to you to guess which game is which.
Also, West Of Loathing is possibly the best-written RPG I've ever played. I mean that literally. I've never played something with such obvious love and care put into every word, that somehow did all that without the words burying the rest of the game. It's a beautiful work of fiction, full of silly walks and quite possibly the best subplot featuring a spitoon ever to grace the world of man."

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Tom Grochowiak (@TomGrochowiak), MoaCube:
"Reigns: Her Majesty. The Tinder-like swipe-to-make-royal-choices mechanic is pretty much the perfect format for a mobile narrative game. The writing's witty, there's some mystery to it, and I had more fun with it than any "full-blown" indie game this year."

Chris Floyd (@DeckNine_Floyd), Deck Nine Games:
"Hollow Knight is a masterful exercise in tone (as well as finely tuned gameplay).
LogISTical is an addictive management game with an ABSURD amount of content.
What Remains of Edith Finch fascinated those of us making narrative games and thinking about gameplay in that context.
West of Loathing is a joyous and generous game. And freaking funny.
Super Blood Hockey is a brilliant revival of an old classic for the NES, with smart updating of the formula."

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Jana Reinhardt (@rottenhedgehog), Rat King Entertainment:
"I feel >OBSERVER_ grabbed my Cyberpunk heart. The works of Bloober Team remind me of art installations the way they use space, music and effects so perfectly. Plus the setting in their very own hometown Krakow really made the cyberpunk believable. I also liked the limited setting and how you do interviews through doors. And that they could get Rutger "Tears in the rain" Hauer to do voice acting is just cream of the crop. Oh, and pigs with VR glasses!"

David Wehle (@DavidWehle):
"Easy choice for me, What Remains of Edith Finch. It left an indelible mark on my mind on how to tell a beautiful story in a video game. The themes of family and loss are ideas I try to present in my games with half of Giant Sparrow's grace and talent."

Joachim Holmér (@JoachimHolmer), Neat Corporation:
"Night in the Woods for its characters and for dealing with psychological struggles. The fact that you don't know the history of them makes it all very interesting as well. This is also a case where dialogue options are reflective of character, in a really nice way."

Tomas Rawlings (@TomasRawlings), Auroch Digital:
"I have really enjoyed playing The Shrouded Isle. It's a great game putting you in charge of an insular cult attempting to navigate your way to ensuring the whims of your dark god are carried out whilst making sure your followers remain obedience. That demands blood. The interaction is simple yet layered in complexity, the writing is witty and dark. It's the prefect gamic reflection of the times in which we live in..."

We'd like to thank all developers who contributed to this feature, as well as, of course, our readers for making 2017 such a good year for indiegames.com. We hope you have a great 2018!



from IndieGames.com http://ift.tt/2lwctwe

Developers Share Their Favorite Games Of 2017

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2017 has been a banner year for videogames, with many successful and important titles getting released throughout the year. Instead of presenting you our favorite 2017 games, we asked developers which titles resonated with them instead. Their answers are once again testament to the richness and diversity that independent games have to offer. If 2018 will only be half as good, we're in for quite a ride!

Jay Tholen (@jaytholen):
"Rex: Another Island was my indie pick for 2017. It's a solidly designed 'open world' (it has one really huge level with warp points) platformer in which you play as an adorable pink dinosaur exploring an island with diverse biomes. Games of the 'difficult platformer' variety don't normally do this for me, but Rex was therapeutically relaxing and I want to go hang out in its world again just thinking about it."

Sam Luangkhot (@flarechess):
"Really loved Brianna Lei 's Butterfly Soup VN for a lighthearted and touching story that has now become close to my heart. It's so rare to find content that is made BY someone like you ABOUT people like you, which makes the game all the more endearing to me."

Omar Cornut (@ocornut), Lizardcube:
"Fidel Dungeon Rescue - I thought it was brilliantly designed, there are lots of subtleties with how to deal with the monsters, the game lets you discover and understand them by experimenting (much like The Witness did), and it doesn't have an invasive tutorial.
It's also a game that makes it clear that you can't "perfect" a level, you have to go with the flow and try to do the best you can, alternating moments of slow experimentation with moments where you have to save yourself and play a more risky and instinctive game. I think this is what the Ghost conveyed, you have to move on, don't try to perfect a level too much. Like the typical rogue like, it's not about a given level but about your ability to do well enough under always varying conditions."

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Christian Miller (@SilvrSpookGames), Silver Spook Games:
"Tacoma - The way that the story was told, through AR recordings, bits of news and text littered around this space station was reminiscent of System Shock, but with its own innovative spin. The story is pretty short but well told with a lot of reversed expectations and sci-fi delightfulness generally."

Byron Atkinson-Jones (@xiotex):
"For me it's Doctor Kvorak's Obliteration Game by Freekstorm - the reason why is because I know the developer and saw the love and attention that went into that game. They were not only really passionate about their craft but the most wonderful people you could meet.
It resonated with me because I saw myself in them - trying to make a success in this brutally difficult industry. Doing everything they could within their means to make their game a success, just like I and all the other indie devs I know do."

Michael Rader (@raderm), Theory of Games:
"I love Tooth and Tail's minimalist approach to the RTS genre. Feels like a throwback and an evolution simultaneously. I've also gotten super addicted to Oxygen Not Included, even though it's still in Early Access. I love the interplay of automation vs manual control, and the complex-yet-transparent mechanic design."

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Alexander Formoso (@Alexformosoc), Bohemia Interactive:
"Dead Cells doesn't have a deep story that touches the depths of human nature and so on. It's a simple 2D Roguelite Metroidvania, much like this year's Hollow Knight, which is also fantastic. But the difference with Dead Cells is that it compresses the play sessions in 10 minute runs. Every time you play, your character gets stronger, and you can get farther away, but since its stronger, you breeze through the beginning sections with reduced chances of getting harmed.
It sports phenomenal pixel art, fluid as hell combat, funny and responsive animations and super juicy effects. For a Dark Souls fiend like me, it feels like they found an amazing spot in the formula. THIS is the "Dark Souls in portable mode" that I've been wanting to play on commutes and lunchbreaks."

Louise Chamberlain (@LouiseWooeez), Triangular Pixel:
"Night in the Woods - its pessimistic/dark/humourous narrative really touched that cynical, teenage part of me that still lives on deep down! It's also beautiful."

Matthieu Richez (@cccpingu), CCCP:
"This year, the indie game that resonated the most with me would be Kitfox Games' The Shrouded Isle. A simple, short yet hard, compacted intriguing experience that really itches my game designer skills. The mechanics are subtle, board game like, when you play the game as a game designer you say to yourself: "ah! That's a game I could almost do on my own!" and at the same time "Gosh, that is clever!" It made me think a lot about new, small concepts, and made me nervous about my own skills as a designer to put on paper something so focused and in line with a cool, innovative theme like that."

devgoty4.jpg

Talha Kaya (@taloketo), Kayabros:
"Dujanah is my favorite indie game of this year. It is courageous in how it handles the serious themes while maintaining the absolutely punk, crazy and colorful style throughout. It is a game that truly embodies the vision of its developer and does not yield to anything less. It exists against all odds of this industry and we are lucky to have it."

Megan Fox (@glassbottommeg), Glass Bottom Games:
"Both Heat Signature and Streets of Rogue hit this free-form action sweet spot for me that I haven't seen done this well in, maybe ever? I'm hard pressed to think of another action game like this with as much breadth of choice as you've got in both. Bounce the wrench off the guy's head then grab your target and slam him into space, leaving him to suffocate, while you last-minute grab yourself with your own spaceship? Yeah, sure, that works. Become an ape, free your own kind, and fight an army of soldiers with nothing but a pile of bananas (and access to a cloning machine to bolster your ape army), all to steal a baseball that will fund yet more ape cloning? Yep, that works too. I'll leave it to you to guess which game is which.
Also, West Of Loathing is possibly the best-written RPG I've ever played. I mean that literally. I've never played something with such obvious love and care put into every word, that somehow did all that without the words burying the rest of the game. It's a beautiful work of fiction, full of silly walks and quite possibly the best subplot featuring a spitoon ever to grace the world of man."

devgoty5.jpg

Tom Grochowiak (@TomGrochowiak), MoaCube:
"Reigns: Her Majesty. The Tinder-like swipe-to-make-royal-choices mechanic is pretty much the perfect format for a mobile narrative game. The writing's witty, there's some mystery to it, and I had more fun with it than any "full-blown" indie game this year."

Chris Floyd (@DeckNine_Floyd), Deck Nine Games:
"Hollow Knight is a masterful exercise in tone (as well as finely tuned gameplay).
LogISTical is an addictive management game with an ABSURD amount of content.
What Remains of Edith Finch fascinated those of us making narrative games and thinking about gameplay in that context.
West of Loathing is a joyous and generous game. And freaking funny.
Super Blood Hockey is a brilliant revival of an old classic for the NES, with smart updating of the formula."

devgoty6.jpg

Jana Reinhardt (@rottenhedgehog), Rat King Entertainment:
"I feel >OBSERVER_ grabbed my Cyberpunk heart. The works of Bloober Team remind me of art installations the way they use space, music and effects so perfectly. Plus the setting in their very own hometown Krakow really made the cyberpunk believable. I also liked the limited setting and how you do interviews through doors. And that they could get Rutger "Tears in the rain" Hauer to do voice acting is just cream of the crop. Oh, and pigs with VR glasses!"

David Wehle (@DavidWehle):
"Easy choice for me, What Remains of Edith Finch. It left an indelible mark on my mind on how to tell a beautiful story in a video game. The themes of family and loss are ideas I try to present in my games with half of Giant Sparrow's grace and talent."

Joachim Holmér (@JoachimHolmer), Neat Corporation:
"Night in the Woods for its characters and for dealing with psychological struggles. The fact that you don't know the history of them makes it all very interesting as well. This is also a case where dialogue options are reflective of character, in a really nice way."

Tomas Rawlings (@TomasRawlings), Auroch Digital:
"I have really enjoyed playing The Shrouded Isle. It's a great game putting you in charge of an insular cult attempting to navigate your way to ensuring the whims of your dark god are carried out whilst making sure your followers remain obedience. That demands blood. The interaction is simple yet layered in complexity, the writing is witty and dark. It's the prefect gamic reflection of the times in which we live in..."

We'd like to thank all developers who contributed to this feature, as well as, of course, our readers for making 2017 such a good year for indiegames.com. We hope you have a great 2018!



from IndieGames.com http://ift.tt/2lwctwe

Feature: Memorable Games of 2017 - ARMS

Feature: Feature: Memorable Games of 2017 - ARMS

It's got LEGS



from Nintendo Life | Latest Updates http://ift.tt/2CfukCI

SuperData Shows PUBG Holding in PC Market

I have been waiting for SuperData Research to do their monthly chart blog post, but I guess they were serious when they said they were going to take the last two weeks of the year off.

So no post with supplementary data.  They did tweet the November 2017 chart before they went on their break, so I might as well put that up.

SuperData Research Top 10 – November 2017

On the PC side of the chart League of Legends remains glued in first place while PlayerUnknown’s Battleground held on to the second spot.  Not bad for a $30 game.  After reaching fourth place in October Destiny 2 dropped two spots, placing it just ahead of World of Warcraft which remained in seventh.  Call of Duty: WWII broke into the list at either, displacing World of Tanks, while Star Wars Battlefront 2, whose business model garnered so much attention last month, took the final position for November.  I expect those two EA titles will rise when we get the December chart.

On the console side of things Call of Duty: WWII topped the chart, displacing FIFA 18, while Star Wars Battlefront 2 grabbed third.   Meanwhile Fortnite: Battle Royale … I guess that whole co-op idea the started with is dead if they’ve put “battle royale” in the name now… made its way into eighth place.  It will be interesting to see if its rival, PlayerUnknown’s Battleground, which hit XBox One this month, will top it on the next chart.

On the mobile side Candy Crush Saga remained on the chart, popping up from ninth to fifth place.  More interesting to me is NCsoft’s Lineage M and Lineage 2 Revolution on the chart.  As we saw on the last NCsoft financial statement, mobile is taking off for them.  It makes you wonder if they might want to dump that whole MMO genre now that mobile is bringing in more revenue than any of their PC titles.



from The Ancient Gaming Noob http://ift.tt/2Ccly8F

PlayStation developers pick their favourite gameplay mechanics of 2017

PlayStation Developers Pick Their Favorite Gameplay Mechanics of 2017

The team over at PlayStation EU have put together an excellent series of posts gathering some end-of-year thoughts from a group of prolific creators. We were thrilled with how they turned out, so we’re running the series here as well. If you’re based in Europe, do yourself a favor and bookmark the EU PlayStation.Blog for more high-quality, region-appropriate updates and announcements into 2018 and beyond.


While story, characters and visuals are all key components of what makes a videogame memorable, it’s their core mechanics and gameplay systems that make them fun – and 2017’s release roster offered fun in abundance.

To celebrate the last 12 months’ embarrassment of riches, we wanted to call out the systems that have wowed players over 2017 – and what better people to ask than the expert developers who have crafted some of PlayStation’s games over the past 12 months?

Gravity-shifting in Gravity Rush 2

As chosen by…

“I loved playing around with this and ‘flying’ through the world.” Hermen Hulst, Co-founder, Guerrilla Games (Horizon Zero Dawn)

“I know it’s technically not a new gameplay mechanic, as it was the star of the first instalment of the series, but it’s still awesome. The addition of gravity styles means you get to play around with some new tricks. Roaming through the floating city really gives me the feeling of freedom every time.” Michał Dobrowolski, Senior Game Designer, CD Projekt Red (The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt, Gwent)

Control precision in Assassin’s Creed: Origins

Assassin's Creed: Origins

As chosen by…

“My favourite part was the system that allowed you to walk along with cats. Also, the quality of the action surprised me. Although the combat and animation have always been high-quality, the latest title raised the feel and touch of the controls to the next level, yet I feel that people didn’t recognise these improvements.” Fumihiko Yasuda, Director, Team Ninja (Nioh)

“Being able to enjoy the world of Assassin’s Creed Origins through the air with the eagle or in auto-walk mode on the camel’s back is brilliant. The world is the star of the game and this allows you to enjoy it even more. No limitations, just pure freedom.” Damien Kieken, Game Director, Ubisoft (For Honor)

The multiple game modes of Nier: Automata

As chosen by…

“Having things change from shoot ’em up, to a 2.5D platformer, to an open-world 3D RPG. I can’t remember ever having played a game that not only deftly switched between completely different genres of games, but that did each of them so seamlessly and to such a high level of execution that I would totally have played each of them as a standalone game.” Jeramy Bergerson, Associate Producer, Arkane Studios (Prey)

“Platinum Games have created a unique beast of a game that successfully combines gameplay elements from totally different genres. Its seamless transitions from hack ‘n slash to twin stick shooter creates a new experience for gamers.” Khalil Osaimi, Media Designer, Housemarque (Nex Machina, Matterfall)

The upgrade system of Nier: Automata

As chosen by…

“There have been a few games that have made me put the controller down and simply admire the ingenuity of the teams behind them and this year that game was Nier: Automata. The way the game contextualises upgrading 2B, 9S and A2 through the chip system and the way that thread carries throughout the game was a masterstroke. Game mechanics and story coming together to create this near-perfect whole.” Brad Davey, Lead Designer, Sumo Digital (Snake Pass)

Going driving in Everybody’s Golf

As chosen by…

“Driving the go-carts in Everybody’s Golf. I spent way too much time just running into other players, I’m surprised they didn’t ban me. I’ve since learned to drive responsibly and respect others.” John Johanas, Director, Tango Gameworks (The Evil Within 2)

The stealth system in Horizon Zero Dawn

As chosen by…

“Horizon’s stealth mechanics are very gratifying, I love sneaking around in the tall grass, scanning enemies to identify weaknesses and setting up traps to take them down like a total badass. Triggering slow-mo whilst jumping and take down machines with the bow and arrow are easily my favourite moments in the game.” James Valls, Senior Producer, Rebellion (Battlezone, Sniper Elite 4)

“Argh! I hate it when developers do this in interviews, but honestly, I love the core mechanic in That’s You! When we hit upon the idea of asking players questions where they themselves are the answers, it was just immediately brilliant. It’s so simple and pure, and usually hilarious to play with friends. We regularly laughed ’til we cried while play testing it at Wish, and there aren’t many games you can say that about.” Capsar Field, Wish Studios (Knowledge is Power!)

“It is blowing my own trumpet somewhat, but I would say the double-speed mode in Final Fantasy XII The Zodiac Age. Previously you have had to accept that you need to invest a lot of time to play an RPG, but I would like to brag that with the double-speed mode we put in, you can play in a pleasingly speedy manner!” Hiroaki Kato, Producer, Square-Enix (Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age)

The dark rot in Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

As chosen by…

“There’s so much to love and applaud with that game but the Dark rot visual and what it stands for in terms of game-over was very well executed.” Gavin Price, Creative Lead, Playtonic (Yooka Laylee)

The Nemesis system of Shadow of War

As chosen by…

“The new Nemesis System in Shadow of War, hands down. In all its complexity and – let’s not ignore it – cruelty, the dimension of your actions echoes all over Mordor.” Raul Rubio Munarriz, Director, Tequila Works (Rime)

“It was impressive to see a bigger, more extensive version of Shadow of Mordor’s Nemesis system in 2017’s Shadow of War. Controversies aside, the Nemesis system seems like a great addition to improve players’ experience in a sandbox game. Watching people playing Shadow of War, I couldn’t help but wonder the possibilities of those mechanics applied to other major sandboxes like Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption or Assassin’s Creed.” Román Echevarrena, Producer, RecoTechnology (Numantia)

PlayLink in Hidden Agenda

As chosen by…

“We may be a bit biased given that we developed Hidden Agenda, but PlayLink’s ability to offer new design opportunities to developers and open up gaming to new audiences, meant it was my favourite.” Steve Goss, Director of Design, Supermassive Games (Hidden Agenda)



from PlayStation.Blog http://ift.tt/2CrWQho

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