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Disco Dodgeball photo
Disco Dodgeball

I didn't know I needed Robot Roller-Derby Disco Dodgeball in my life


But I've seen the light, and it looks an awful lot like an incoming ball
Feb 19
// Jordan Devore
I never got much into my high school's favorite rainy-day activity, dodgeball, but it was fun to half participate in, half watch. Our gym teacher would roll out carts full of fluffy, foamy, definitely-not-rubber balls and ab...
RE5734L3R photo
RE5734L3R

Abandoned title 5734L3R reboots as RE5734L3R


Although I'm skeptical, I really hope that this game sees completion
Dec 13
// Rob Morrow
5734L3R (pronounced Stealer), the intriguing post-apocalyptic robotic future title that seemed to disappear as quickly as it had arrived is back, perhaps; or at least this shiny new teaser trailer for it seems to indica...
SteamWorld Dig photo
SteamWorld Dig

SteamWorld Dig will have a cross-buy discount in Europe, but not in North America


Nintendo of America is apparently to blame
Aug 27
// Chris Carter
SteamWorld Dig is hitting the Wii U on August 28th, and if you happen to live in the EU, AUS, or NZ regions, you'll get a 25% off discount for owning the 3DS version. But wait -- why isn't this cross-buy discount availab...
Wii U photo
Wii U

Steamworld Dig is better on the Wii U


Best of both worlds
Aug 25
// Caitlin Cooke
This isn’t the first rodeo for SteamWorld Dig -- the cute mining adventure game first arrived last year on the 3DS eshop, followed by a Steam release. Now it’s making a comeback to the Wii U this week on August 28...
Japanese indie games! photo
Japanese indie games!

Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser jets to Steam in June


Go, go, Vulkaiser! Bring peace to the Earth!
May 29
// Kyle MacGregor
Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser is pretty much love at first sight. A shoot-'em-up inspired by the cheesy animes of yesteryear, Vulkaiser takes place in an alternate 1977, where a bunch of kids in bizarre outfits and a giant ro...
 photo
Arkhamfall
Hey everybody! Here's the second episode of Farts 'N' Crafts, the show where I draw pictures of stuff related to what's going on in gaming. Today, there's a lot of buzz about a new Batman game from Rocksteady, and Titanfall ...

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Do you think fashion can bloom on the battlefield?
Hey, did you see those Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes track jackets and sneakers that Puma's making? They're pretty cool, but a franchise with such awesome character and mechanical designs really deserves more creative merchandising. Here are a few ideas.

Retro photo
Retro

The original Descent is now on Steam


Nostalgia goggles are primed and ready
Feb 11
// Alasdair Duncan
Oh I tell you, it brings a small ray of sunshine to my old and tired heart to load up Steam and see an old favorite of mine has been added to the service. Today is another one of those days as the original Descent has been ma...
Podtoid photo
Excerpt from Podtoid #278
In case you missed yesterday's episode of Podtoid, or you're one of those people who won't do anything for more than ten minutes, here's a brief excerpt in which Jonathan Holmes shocks the rest of the cast with news of Nintendo's fascist removal of cartoon buttocks from Chibi-Robo!: Photo Finder.

Call of Duty: Online photo
Call of Duty: Online

Call of Duty: Online throws robot zombies into the mix


Not robots and zombies, robot zombies
Dec 02
// Brett Makedonski
Call of Duty: Online -- the Chinese-exclusive, free-to-play, online only title -- has a new trailer. The fact that it exists isn't necessarily significant; the fact that it contains menacing robot zombies is most certai...
Bot Colony photo
Bot Colony

Bot Colony promises a voice-controlled adventure game


This episodic sci-fi title will apparently respond intelligently to spoken English
Oct 01
// Alasdair Duncan
Controlling a game with your voice has long been a dream of some developers but most of the time, technology isn't able to cope with the complexity of speech. Bot Colony is an episodic, sci-fi adventure game from C...
Mighty No. 9 photo
$2,200,000 in the bank, son!
You better believe I've had my eyeballs on the Mighty No. 9 Kickstarter like a vulture. I wanted to spread the news as soon as the console port goal was finally cleared. That's right! Mere minutes ago, the donation amount cro...

Archie Mega Man photo
Archie Mega Man

Archie Mega Man vs. Bad Box Art Mega Man


Mega Man #33 variant cover is the dream fight
Sep 16
// Tony Ponce
Archie has released the cover art for Mega Man #33, which immediately follows the "Blackout: The Curse of Ra Moon" arc currently running. What's amazing is not the regular newsstand cover but the variant, featuring the infamo...
Mega Man art photo
Mega Man art

This is the big one, guys: Orioto's Mega Man fresco


It's like it was made just for me
Sep 14
// Tony Ponce
I knew it would happen eventually. It was inevitable. Now my wallet is starting to get very antsy. To bring you up to speed, digital artist Mikaël "Orioto" Aguirre has been whipping up tasteful spreads of games like Fina...

Mega Man #29 sample pages and miniature anime conventions

Sep 10 // Tony Ponce
As with "Worlds Collide" Act 2 artist Tracy Yardley!, Cavallaro was not familiar with the Mega Man mythos prior to joining the team. Of course, the best artist does his or her best to catch up on the material, getting a feel for the character relationships and subtle complexity. "I also noticed there's a LOT of Mega Man artwork out there," he said in reference to the Mega Man fan art and Japanese Rockman manga scans that he stumbled upon during his research, "and there are numerous stylistic differences that don't necessarily overlap, so I stick to Archie's version because that's what's pertinent here." Osamu Tezuka's Astro Boy naturally came up when discussing other non-Mega Man robot comics, which led to an unrelated yet fun anecdote about anime and manga fandom from decades past. "I was traveling hours away from home to go to manga and anime conventions in the early 80s -- that's almost 30 years ago! Back then, a so-called anime 'convention' took place in a room the size of my kitchen on a side-street in Philadelphia or NYC. There'd be maybe 10-20 people milling around, tops, maybe one guy in a homemade Star Blazers uniform, and the only things to buy were very grainy fourth-generation VHS bootlegs. There was no Internet, and this stuff was incredibly hard to find." I can personally vouch for such a story, having purchased my share of boots from very shady mall vendor carts as a young 'un. Doesn't have much to do with Mega Man, but I always enjoy looking back at how much has changed in the celebration of our hobbies. Check out sample pages of MM#29 in the gallery below, along with promo pieces showcasing Cavallaro's line art from the rest of the arc. The issue will go sale in shops starting tomorrow.
Archie Mega Man photo
A brief chat with new Mega Man comic penciller, Mike Cavallaro
With Archie Mega Man #29, the "Blackout: The Curse of Ra Moon" arc has officially begun. All the world's technology has been disabled by an EMP wave, causing untold collateral damage that could take years to recover from. Meg...

Mecanika photo
Mecanika

Mecanika wants to teach Newtonian mechanics with robots


Robots in motion tend to stay in motion; robots at rest tend to stay at rest
Sep 09
// Darren Nakamura
As somebody who has had ideas for using games as tools for education, things like Mecanika are particularly interesting to me. Though physics has become more prominent in games as time has passed, developer CREO wants to uti...

Review: SteamWorld Dig

Aug 21 // Tony Ponce
SteamWorld Dig (3DS)Developer: Image & FormPublisher: Image & FormRelease: August 7, 2013 (EU / AU) / August 8, 2013 (US)MSRP: $8.99 In a steampunk Wild West populated by robots, young Rusty has inherited his Uncle Joe's mine. Ol' Joe apparently lost his life plunging the depths of the mine for its secrets, thus its up to his nephew to take up the pickaxe and continue the journey. SteamWorld Dig is sort of like an open-world Dig Dug. You must chisel away at the soil to create paths that descend ever deeper, all while avoiding underground obstacles such giant insects, falling stones, and pools of acid. Your field of vision is regulated by how much light you have remaining, so you must use your wall-climbing ability to regularly return to the surface and refill your lantern to avoid fumbling around in the dark. Topside is a mining town where you can exchange any ore you find for cash and in turn use the cash to purchase new items and upgrades. Sturdier pickaxes will allow you to break through tougher soil in fewer hits, pouch expansions will allow you collect more ore, and so on. [embed]260352:50089:0[/embed] Along the way, you'll enter special caves which offer more straightforward platforming challenges. Here you'll earn upgrades, like as a super jump, a drill arm to break through rocks that your pickaxe can't crack, or dynamite to blow away obstacles from a safe distance. Many of the upgrades are steam-powered, thus you must also mind your water reserves, which can only be refilled in underground pools or by picking up refills from fallen enemies. That's the gist of it, really. What keeps the journey so thrilling is how customizable it is. Rusty can dig in either of the four cardinal directions but only when he's standing on solid ground. Therefore, you have to chart a path that not only allows access to ore deposits but also provides a clear route back to the town. Do you wish to dig straight down, thereby missing out on money that could be spent towards simplifying your journey, or do you perform a more thorough job and waste precious lantern light? What results is a root-like labyrinthine of tunnels, chutes, and open expanses entirely of your creation; no two players' excavation work will be identical. How each person digs speaks volumes about their individual traits -- efficiency, curiosity, patience. It almost makes me wish that the game allowed for online progress sharing so that we could compare maps and play methods. It is actually possible to trap yourself should you dig without concern for your equipment or surroundings. Certain items such as ladders and teleporters can be your saving grace, but should your supply be exhausted, your only option is to self-destruct. You will respawn on the surface, but you'll incur a 50% cash penalty and any ores you were carrying will have to be retrieved at the site of your death. The total amount of ore in the game is limited, so though there's more than enough to purchase every upgrade, repeated carelessness could end your shopping spree. There's a lot to track and observe in SteamWorld Dig, but you can only understand its brilliance if you push forward through the grind, which may be easier for some than others. The first hour is definitely the hardest -- several swings are required to break through the soil using your weak starter pickaxe, and without the support of Rusty's later upgrades and techniques, progress is as slow and laborious as a real-life mining dig. Then there's the need to return to the surface. The further down you dig, the longer it takes to climb back out to refill your light or go shopping. Aside from the teleporters you purchase from the shop, you'll find a scant few pre-installed at specific depths. Though they make returning to town a lot easier, you'll still be forced to backtrack a significant stretch as you create distance between yourself and the most recent teleporter. The best you can do is make sure that the return path is as streamlined as possible. I admit that I felt pretty fed up with the game on a number of occasions precisely because of these shortcomings. Even so, the allure of what lay hidden beneath the surface compelled me onward. Soil gives way to a long-lost subterranean civilization, which then gives way to evidence of a world much more advanced then the one on the surface. Every hundred meters is some new surprise, some new revelation. There is a genuine allure to SteamWorld Dig, you just have to clear out the rubble to find it.
SteamWorld Dig review photo
Dig, dig, dig, dig, dig, dig, dig in your mine the whole day through
On paper, SteamWorld Dig sounds like the most mind-numbing slog that you could possibly imagine. The object of the game is to dig, exchange the minerals you unearth for better equipment, then dig some more. And when you think...

Mega Man board game photo
Mega Man board game

Details on Mega Man The Board Game sound wild


This ain't no Candy Land
Aug 17
// Tony Ponce
While Jasco Games' Mega Man CCG is more or less ready to ship out the door, Mega Man The Board Game is still a work in progress. However, Jasco did go into some detail at Gen Con about how the game will progress and how it ca...
Mega Man card game photo
Mega Man card game

Mega Man card game will make me even more poor


Get equipped with Trap Card!
Aug 16
// Tony Ponce
Jasco Games, the company currently making that Mega Man board game, is using the same license to produce a set of cards as part of its Universal Fighting System line. I say without any sarcasm or cynicism that I think this is...
Archie Mega Man photo
Archie Mega Man

Wily and Mega Man team up in Mega Man #32


Cover art for the last issue of the Super Adventure Rockman arc
Aug 12
// Tony Ponce
This month's Archie Mega Man issue ends with all technology on the planet shutting down. Planes in mid-flight plummet towards Earth, hospital monitoring equipment ceases to function -- we're talking an apocalyptic scenario he...
Archie Mega Man photo
Archie Mega Man

Dr. Wily wets himself in Mega Man #28


We now return to our regularly scheduled programming
Aug 05
// Tony Ponce
It's over! It's all over! It's all... PSYCHE! You think I'd stop covering the Mega Man comics just because the crossover is finished? Who do you think I am? Though the evens of "Worlds Collide" are technically canon to the ma...
Archie Mega Man photo
Archie Mega Man

The world has been shut down in Mega Man #31


Peek at the cover art for Mega Man's latest "super adventure"
Jul 09
// Tony Ponce
I've been so busy diving into Sonic and Mega Man's "Worlds Collide" comic mini-series that I've neglected to talk about Mega's post-crossover story arc. How do you raise the stakes after a dimension-bending war against both D...

I met Keiji Inafune! We discussed Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z!

Jun 18 // Tony Ponce
After leaving Capcom, Keiji Inafune formed Comcept in order to work on original titles, such as the superhero president game J.J. Rockets on mobile devices and the action-RPG Soul Sacrifice on PlayStation Vita. However, he wouldn't be completely against working on a licensed property if he had a strong attachment to it. One such game series that he really respects is Ninja Gaiden, and he had been playing around with the idea of a new Ninja Gaiden that incorporated zombies. He proposed this idea to Team Ninja, which coincidentally had been thinking about developing a zombie game of its own but lacked any personnel with experience in the genre. Thanks to his notable history with Dead Rising, Inafune was seen as the prime candidate for such a project. But Inafune was quick to remind me that the comparisons with Dead Rising end there. Speaking through a translator, he explained, "Yaiba is not purposefully trying to be influenced from Dead Rising. They are both [my] games, so the zombies made for Dead Rising and the zombies that are here will of course have some similarities... but you can't just cut zombies down and leave it at that. That's not going to be a fun game. You have to think, okay, ninjas and zombies, put those together and see how do we make that fun. What kind of chemical reaction comes from that combination?" The reaction is Ninja Gaiden Z, a game far apart from what we've come to expect from the series. Most notably, we are not playing as longstanding protagonist Ryu Hayabusa but rather Yaiba Kamikaze, a rival shinobi cut down by Ryu and resurrected as a cyborg. Yaiba is about as un-ninja as can get -- he's loud, foul-mouthed, lecherous, and driven by an insatiable bloodlust. Despite Yaiba's harder edge and a world populated by zombies who are surprisingly not the pushovers we've grown accustomed to, Ninja Gaiden Z is significantly toned down from the series' trademark level of difficulty. "It should have a Ninja Gaiden feel to the combat, the kind of responsiveness of a Ninja Gaiden game," Inafune stated, "but this is not a main Ninja Gaiden game. Yaiba is its own thing, and we need to make it accessible to people who maybe come in for the zombie aspects. They like zombie games and they're not used to the technical aspects of Ninja Gaiden. We need to be as open to those players as well so they don't quit in two seconds. Once we have that, we can think about how to make a deeper combat system and offer those sort of technical challenges for people who want that as well." Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z is being developed for PS3 and Xbox 360 with the assistance of Spark Unlimited, the California-based studio currently working on Lost Planet 3. Inafune has been an extremely vocal proponent of Western developers, so it comes as no surprise that he would look outside Japan for aid. Still, Spark's history isn't that extensive, so why was it brought on board? "You can't just look at the past experience of a developer to judge them on what they can do moving forward. People leave developers, staff changes, so you can't always judge them by their past experience. You have to think of the management that is going to be constantly there and their vision for their studio." Inafune felt a connection with Spark's management and knew they could build a good relationship. And for added assistance, they even brought in Toby Gard, one of the designers of the original Tomb Raider! "No Japanese developer could come up with this art style," Inafune noted in regards to the game's striking cel shading. "You could give them all the direction in the world and they still wouldn't come up with this. Also, the kinds of things that you can do with zombies, the ways that you can play with the zombies, you maybe get half of the ideas from a Japanese developer that you get from the West. And even then, those ideas won't be up to the same fun quality." Zombies in Yaiba are not just cannon fodder. You can rip off their arms and use them as nunchuks, or you can toss them into heavy machinery and watch them operate it out of instinct. I'm surprised by how much humanity they've retained -- behind the wheel of a steamroller, one zombie gestures to his undead compatriot to get out of his path lest he get squashed, for example. I don't know how much of this humor simply couldn't be replicated by a Japanese studio, but I'm digging it. It's not traditional Ninja Gaiden, but any game where the hero will crash a truck into a lingerie store and start dancing as panties rain from the sky is okay in my book. Before I left the interview, I had to ask Inafune one final question regarding the elephant in the room. You think I'd spend 20 minutes with Mega Man's caretaker for roughly two decades without asking about the Blue Bomber? I asked, how do you feel about Mega Man in Super Smash Bros.? "I'm really happy for that! It's great! And hopefully they'll put Yaiba in it in the future!" First we need Yaiba on Wii U! "Yeah, no, not right now." Ha ha ha ha! Okay, I'm not even mad at the response! Well played!
Inafune and Yaiba photo
OHMYGODYOUGUYS!!!
Guys. I met Keiji Inafune at E3. I interviewed Keiji Inafune at E3. I've achieved everything I've wanted to accomplish in my relatively short career as a games journalist. There is literally nothing else for me to do except p...

Archie Sonic / Mega Man photo
Archie Sonic / Mega Man

Eggman and Wily feel the heat in Worlds Collide Part 8


Sonic Universe #53 brings Act Two to a gripping close
Jun 18
// Tony Ponce
With the Archie Sonic / Mega Man crossover, "Worlds Collide," I've been doing impressions posts every set of three issues. What I have to say about these works simply cannot be condensed into short three-paragraph news posts ...
Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z photo
Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z

Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z trailer takes a page from MadWorld


"Honor and death go together like hot sauce and my balls!"
Jun 07
// Tony Ponce
GameTrailers has the exclusive debut trailer of Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z, the zombie-infested Ninja Gaiden spin-off being handled by the trinity of Team Ninja, Spark Unlimited, and Keiji Inafune's new studio Comcept. Damn, does...
Mega Man X photo
Mega Man X

Mega Man X pew pews onto Wii U eShop on May 30


X gon' give it to ya
May 25
// Tony Ponce
Do you know why the above trailer is so amazing? Because X throws a Hadoken at Vile's ride armor at the 0:22 mark like he just doesn't give a f*ck. Of the games in the Mega Man X series, the first is definitely the best. S...
Mega Man reboot? photo
Mega Man reboot?

People actually like the Maverick Hunter reboot concept


Fans call for Capcom to revisit the project
May 22
// Chris Carter
Some time ago, we learned off a rather odd project from Capcom -- a gritty Mega Man X FPS idea that never saw the light of day. Yep, Keiji Inafune gave ex-Retro Studios alumni the idea to re-imagine Mega Man similar to Metroi...
Archie Mega Man photo
Archie Mega Man

Hop through time with the fifth Mega Man comic collection


Mega Man Vol. 5 arrives this Wednesday
May 20
// Tony Ponce
Ladies and gentlemen, a new Archie Mega Man graphic novel is arriving this Wednesday, May 22. I have confirmation from fellow editor Chris Carter that he's been picking up back issues and graphic novels to prep himself for th...
Maverick Hunter photo
Maverick Hunter

Maverick Hunter character designer releases X concept art


It's not the worst thing in the world
May 12
// Tony Ponce
It's been a while, my little chickadees! I've been out for a few days putting my nose to the grindstone, so you haven't been blessed by my sparkling presence. I therefore apologize if you've already seen the above artwork, bu...






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