22/01/2022

๐Ÿ•ต️ Lacuna | XSX | Review | 9.5/10 | "A Perfectly Crafted Sci fi Noir, That Has Bags of Character and Music to Die For" ๐Ÿ•ต️ @digitales_games #GameDev #IndieGames

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I'm going to start this review in a strange way - by telling you that I have tried to write this opening paragraph four times now, and I'm struggling because everything I write sounds like hyperbole. I keep using such strong words that I end up thinking, “do I really think this? Can I love it this much? 

Can I keep writing the words ‘near perfect’ or ‘special’ and truly mean it? When I say, ‘I would put this in my top 10 favourite games of all time’, is this just recency bias or do I genuinely think that this may be one of the most well-crafted games I've ever played?”

The more I've had to rewrite it and reflect on it, I keep thinking, “Yep, I do utterly adore it” and I genuinely think it may be one of the best gaming experiences I've ever had.

This is where I usually outline the plot, but all you really need to know is that you play as Neil Conrad, a grizzled member of the CDI investigating a recent murder, boom, done. 

The less you know the better.

21/01/2022

⚓️ Hidden deep | PC | Ten Minute Taster | Gameplay | "A MIGHTY FINE GRAPPLING HOOK!" ⚓️ @HiddenDeepGame #IndieGame #GameDev

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Hidden Deep is an atmospheric sci-fi action game heavily inspired by Aliens, The Thing, and Half-Life. 

Explore, climb, swim, scan, blast and shoot your way through dangerous missions in a huge sub-oceanic mining and research facility. Fear the horrors that lurk below…

20/01/2022

๐Ÿ‘ด๐Ÿ Retired Men’s Nude Beach Volleyball League | PC | Review | 8/10 | "The Smartest Way To Justify A Crap Game" ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‘ด @SodaDrinkerPro #IndieGame #GameDev

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Snowrunner Games’ Retired Men’s Nude Beach Volleyball League contains the smartest way to justify a crap game I’ve ever seen. 

So let’s not beat around the bush: it delivers an absolutely godawful game of volleyball.

19/01/2022

๐Ÿ–ฑ️ The VX2 AimBox Multi-Platform Console Keyboard and Mouse Adaptor From GameSir Now Available on Amazon ๐Ÿ–ฑ️@mygamesir

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This gadget looks really interesting!

GameSir, a leading provider of innovative, high quality gaming peripherals is pleased to announce the Amazon availability its new VX2 AimBox. 

Designed for use with multiple consoles, the VX2 AimBox improves on the previous VX AimBox with a built-in 3.5mm audio jack and PS5 games support. Like the original model, the VX2 features the most advanced technology for a keyboard and mouse adapter for PlayStation, Xbox and Nintendo Switch. 

The GameSir VX2 AimBox is now available on Amazon.com for $49, Amazon UK for £42.49 and Amazon Canada for $65.99.

⚔️ Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning – Fatesworn DLC | Xbox Series X | Review | 7/10 | "It Began As A Mistake" ⚔️

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It began as a mistake.

I first played Kingdoms of Amalur almost a decade ago, whilst I enjoyed it – I had expected something with a darker edge after learning of Todd McFarlane’s involvement, something with a more bite and personality. That said, it has often popped up in my mind over the years, and I occasionally felt the inkling that I should revisit the game without my initial prejudices, now knowing that the game was light in tone – I’d clearly approach the game more fairly and take more from the experience. Thus, when I was offered the DLC, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity – I’d get to dive back into the world of Amalur without replaying the base game, and so I began installing.


And thus began the mistake.

18/01/2022

๐Ÿ️ Len's Island | PC | Gameplay | "The Limestone Cowboy" ๐Ÿ️ @LensIsland #GameDev #IndieGame

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In Len's Island, you can build, fight, farm and explore. Experience your own path. Whether it's building the home of your dreams, tending to your crops and watching the sun go down; or exploring the mysteries of the Island and the darkness underneath, you may want to take a sword with you.

17/01/2022

๐Ÿ“•๐Ÿ“˜ Lock On Gaming Journal | Issue 2 | "More Beautiful Gaming Journalism To Curl Up With On A Winters Night" ๐Ÿ“•๐Ÿ“˜ @LostInCult #LockOn

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Lock on | Volume 002 | Q4 2021

Curl up on the sofa with this luxurious gaming journal as the Lost In Cult guys bring us another issue of this beautiful Lock On bookazine. After being blown away by the first instalment back in August 2021 I was sent the next piece of the Lock On story just before Christmas and have been working my way through the glorious writing and wonderful artwork over the last few weeks.


I’m glad to report to you that the journal is still delivering on all its early promise and vitally has retained that beautiful new paper smell that fell in love with in Issue 1!


(https://www.gamesfreezer.co.uk/2021/08/lock-on-gaming-journal-issue-1-luxury.html)

15/01/2022

๐Ÿ’€ Transient Extended Edition | Review | Xbox Series X | 7/10 | "A Healthy Dose of Cosmic Horror and Interdimensional Shenanigans" ๐Ÿ’€ @StormlingStd #IndieGames #GameDev

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As the resident HP Lovecraft nerd within the GF, er, massive, I got first dibs on this one, as if the answer would ever be no. 

Transient: Extended Edition exists in a Cyberpunk/Blade Runner-Esque future, but tops off the sci-fi with a healthy dose of cosmic horror and interdimensional shenanigans. 

The game comes to us from devs Stormling Studios and publisher Iceberg Interactive, who have a good line in Lovecraftian games, having released the Darkness Within series in the mid-2000s, as well as the well-received Conarium back in 2017. 

The original Transient was released back in late 2020 and is presented here with the bells and whistles we've come to expect for re-releases on Xbox Series S and X, namely 4k and 60fps. 

14/01/2022

๐ŸŽง HyperX Cloud Alpha | Headset Review | "Music (and Sound Effects) to my Ears" ๐ŸŽง @HyperX #HyperXFamily

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I’m not an audiophile. I don’t have a bespoke stereo system that costs more than a small family car. But I am an avid gamer and have been since the 1980s.

Now, back then, the sound effects and music in games was a tad basic, to say the least. Polyphonic it was not. The surround sound back then wasn’t 7.1 or even 5.1. It was barely 1.1. 

But as sound quality in games improved and games spread online, there developed the need to be able to hear and be heard in high fidelity. But, Luddite and lazy as I am, I’d not really embraced what this meant for headsets. My TV has decent speakers, but nothing special, and my old Turtle Beach headset was fine. Wasn’t it?

After an hour or two with a HyperX Cloud Alpha headset, I can say emphatically, NO.

13/01/2022

⏩ Babble Royale | PC | Ten Minute Taster | "Let Scrabble Commence!" ⏩ #GameDev #IndieGames

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Babble Royale is an intense multiplayer free-for-all that combines word-making skills with fast-paced tactical and strategic action.

Earn money and collect loot to upgrade your abilities, outrun the deadly hot zone, and outwit or outlast all your opponents to have the Last Word!

12/01/2022

๐ŸŒ†Beyond a Steel Sky | Xbox Series X | Review | 8/10 | “A few technical problems don't dampen the wonderful story and charming characters” ๐ŸŒ† @RevSoftGames #IndieGames #GameDev

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To talk about Beyond a Steel Sky, I have to talk about its prequel - Beneath a Steel Sky - and how important it is to me. One of my earliest gaming memories was sitting next to my big brother, watching him play this strange but quirky point and click game. 

It looked like nothing I had ever seen before, I was 5 years old - so pretty much everything looked new to me - but this game was so visually different from the games that we usually played, as an adult; I now know this was my first experience of cyberpunk - a genre and style I would come to love. 

Beneath a Steel Sky was a game I had never revisited, the childlike wonder was still my only impression, that was until I got this to review; and after 26 years, I finally replayed it and boy did it stand up to my first impression, it’s simply amazing. So now after so many years, a sequel has arrived, could it capture the wonder of my youth or should it have stayed in the ‘90s?

11/01/2022

๐Ÿ’บ AndaSeat Launches the Gorgeous Looking Phantom 3 Gaming Chair ๐Ÿ’บ @andaseatchair

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World-leading gaming chair brand, AndaSeat, who previously manufactured race car seats today announces the launch of its latest gaming chair -The Phantom 3

๐Ÿ”๐Ÿฎ Happy's Humble Burger Farm | Xbox Series X Review | 8/10 | "Well, burger me!" ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿฎ @HappysHumble #IndieGames #GameDev

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Well, burger me! I rarely miss a deadline and suddenly I find myself chased for this review, which is fine. It is the threat of being ground down, seasoned and grilled to perfection that concerns me.

Oh, wait, that’s the premise to this game from the Scythe Dev Team

Is this game as delicious as it sounds?

Let us find out.

10/01/2022

๐Ÿช™ The Forgotten City | Nintendo Switch | Review | 9/10 | "8-10 Hours of Adventure Mystery Romp" ๐Ÿช™ @ModnStoryteller #IndieGames #GameDev

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I’ll be honest, in the first few minutes I was worried that I really wasn’t going to like this game. And I was wrong, so gloriously and happily wrong. 

A little history: The Forgotten City started out life as one of Skyrim’s many mods, and it was successful. So successful in fact that the developers took the idea, built upon it, and fleshed it out into the standalone game I’m reviewing today, creating a gloriously designed Greco-Roman city, replete with fantastically written characters, period-accurate architecture, and a central gameplay mechanic that is simultaneously clever, fun, and educational (yeah, I know – they don’t go together often). 

I went into The Forgotten City completely blind, and I would recommend that you do the same. It’s hard to review a game like this one without some kind of spoilers, so if you’d like to get the absolute most out of it, stop reading after this statement: The Forgotten City is 8-10 hours of adventure mystery romp, driven by fantastically written and acted dialogue. Play it. 

09/01/2022

๐ŸŒ️‍♀️⛳️ Smoots Golf | Xbox Series X | Review | 6/10 | "Not Quite Up To Par" ๐ŸŒ️‍♀️⛳️@JanduSoft #IndieGames #GameDev

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The last title I reviewed from Jandusoft was Cards of the Dead, a clever and simple zombie survival deck game that was released just before Halloween and provided a few hours of tense, pixelated fun.

When I saw that Jandusoft were releasing Smoots Golf, I leapt at the chance to cover it without even looking at the trailer, as I’d had such a good time with Cards of the Dead – and I love to golf!

08/01/2022

☔️ Kathy Rain: Directors Cut | Nintendo Switch | Review | 8.5/10 | "A Gripping Point & Click Adventure" ☔️ @ClifftopGames #GameDev #IndieGames

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This is my sleeper hit of 2021, I'm very enamoured with Kathy Rain. 

Point and click adventures always bring a smile to my face, they bring back strong memories of my youth, sitting next to my big bro and going through games like Monkey Island or Beneath a Steel Sky, it’s a genre that - when done well - really can create some wonderful and interesting games. 

Whilst I didn’t have my big bro next to me this time, even flying solo this game really struck a chord with me.

07/01/2022

๐Ÿ“ธ Project Zero: Maiden of Black Water | XBOX Series X | Review | 7/10 | "Yes, This Game is D.A.R.K." ๐Ÿ“ธ @project_zero_kt @ShowMeMagic #IndieGame #GameDev #IndieGames

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At the time of writing this, it’s Halloween season, a time to immerse yourself in anything scary; watch a few horrors, play a couple of spooky games - and this year is no different as I’ve been asked to review this Japanese supernatural game which is either a blessing or a curse, only time will tell.  I have always had a thing for Asian horror movies. They are so atmospheric and the separation from the Western world just takes it to another level. This game is no exception.

06/01/2022

๐Ÿ•น️Coin-Op: The Arcade Guide | Written by Darren Doyle | Greyfox Books | Review๐Ÿ•น️@greyfoxbooks #Retrogaming #Arcade

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Available from - https://www.greyfoxbooks.com/product/coin-op-the-arcade-guide/

The world of arcade machines seems vast and full of undiscovered gold. I’ll regularly be reading books or articles on the subject and come across a handful of games that I didn’t even know existed. Often, they are variations on a theme, but I’m always keen to find out every last morsel of information available – especially if they are side-scrolling brawlers, a genre which I am particularly drawn to for its visceral, button-hammering thrills.

Coin-Op: The Arcade Guide is clearly a book made with a real passion for the subject matter, and whilst there are some rough edges in terms of clunky sentences, typographical errors and a very busy visual design – there’s a compulsive thirst to the way that the author presents the work, this is best captured in the introductory text to each section of the book; a real desire for the reader to share the joy and reverence that Darren Doyle has for these releases and the memories tied to discovering and playing them.

05/01/2022

๐Ÿ‘ถDEATH STRANDING DIRECTOR’S CUT Arrives on PC Spring 2022 | Enhanced by New Intel Technology ๐Ÿ‘ถ

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This news makes me want to play Death Stranding on my PC...

505 Games, global publisher of the PC version of Hideo Kojima’s genre-defying DEATH STRANDING in partnership with KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS, unveiled at CES 2022 it will publish the DEATH STRANDING DIRECTOR’S CUT on PC, launching simultaneously on both the Epic Games Store and Steam in spring 2022.

Embark on an emotional trek across a fractured world with this definitive version of DEATH STRANDING, now amplified with the power of Intel’s new Xe Super Sampling (XeSS) graphics technology. XeSS’s machine learning further enriches DEATH STRANDING DIRECTOR’S CUT’s already-stunning graphical fidelity as well as elevating gameplay and cutscene performance. This improved edition also features higher frame rates, a new photo mode and ultra-wide monitor support to fully take in the sights of Sam Bridges’ journey. 
 
Kojima Productions’ debut title was one of the most-anticipated games of the last decade. Led by a star-studded cast including Norman Reedus as Sam Bridges, DEATH STRANDING takes Sam on a perilous journey across ravaged remains of America to reunite the country.
 

๐Ÿ•น️ Taito Arcade Selection | Egret II | mini ๐Ÿ•น️#Arcade #RetroGaming

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United Games Entertainment has announced that they have exclusive rights for distribution and sales of Taito’s EGRET II mini in the West. 

Set for release in 2022, this cool looking piece of gaming hardware is creating great excitement in Japan.

๐Ÿ›น๐Ÿฆ Skatebird | Nintendo Switch | Review | 4/10 | "Tony Squawks" ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ›น@glassbottommeg #GameDev #IndieGames

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I'm a curmudgeonly old sod. I remember seasons living up to their descriptions, and turning up when they should. I remember having to memorise phone numbers if I wanted to call someone. I remember penny sweets being a penny. And I remember the original Tony Hawk's Pro Skater coming out. 

And there lies the rub. In reviewing Skatebird, I find myself constantly wondering whether Tony ruined me for other men. Birds. Games. OK, it isn't a great analogy but, we are where we are.

04/01/2022

๐Ÿฐ 6Souls | XBOX | Review | 8/10 | "She Sells 6Souls on the Seashore" ๐Ÿฐ #GameDev #IndieGame

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“My soul is prepared… How’s yours?”

A question put to Indiana Jones by a member of the Brotherhood of the Cruciform Sword while facing a boat propeller-induced nose job, and a pertinent question to ask yourself before launching 6Souls, a new pixel art action platformer thrust onto the gaming scene in December 2021.

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