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Fortified is a fun 1950s sci-fi take on base defense photo
Fortified is a fun 1950s sci-fi take on base defense
by Jordan Devore

Leading up to PAX Prime, Clapfoot released a trailer for its base defense shooter Fortified. It caught my eye for a few reasons, notably the '50s sci-fi movie theme and its general resemblance to Double Fine's Iron Brigade (formerly Trenched). There aren't too many games like it.

The build playable at PAX was fairly early in development but offered a decent enough idea of what to expect. Aliens are invading the city and you and up to three friends need to shoot them down, one wave at a time. I selected the character class with a jetpack, while my co-op partner had the unique ability to command soldiers around the battlefield. I think I made the right call.

We had the freedom to place defensive structures like machine gun turrets, a slowing device, and sandbags wherever we wanted within reason, and the shooting felt good -- surprisingly good. My favorite weapon was the rocket launcher, because it sent robot invaders flying all over the place. The physics were wobbly, exactly as you would hope. Again, think lo-fi science fiction.

With some proper maze-building techniques, we managed to funnel robotic spiders into a single lane so we could concentrate fire on flying saucers and other stragglers. The boss, a hulking robot, must have been inches away from our base before he went down.

I wasn't able to see the two remaining characters, upgrades, or any other levels -- I'm told they will more than likely all be set within a city -- but I liked what was playable enough to keep Fortified on my radar. The game isn't releasing on PC and Xbox One until next year, so there's time for more features and polish. In speaking with art director Adam Garib, it seems like the studio has a solid grasp on what's needed to flesh out the experience. Fingers crossed.

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1:30 PM on 09.05.2014

Destiny and Red Bull are teaming up for some unclear reason

"Brand synergy!" the executive shouted, confident that his enthusiasm would rally his employees. "Forward-thinking leverage!" he followed up, unsure about the mumbo jumbo coming out of his mouth, but hoping his tone would ins...

Brett Makedonski



RollerCoaster Tycoon World is a return to form, features robust online modes and offline play photo
RollerCoaster Tycoon World is a return to form, features robust online modes and offline play
by Alessandro Fillari

Back at gamescom, Atari announced RollerCoaster Tycoon World, a new installment to the much-loved amusement park series. However, after a 10-year series hiatus from the PC and the debut of the polarizing RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile, which was loaded with microtransactions and other annoyances, many had reservations about the potential for a brand new title.

But during a private showing of RollerCoaster Tycoon World at PAX Prime 2014, the developers along with the CEO of Atari, Fred Chesnais, were keen to show how it's a welcome return to what made the series great. Right from the get-go, the developers at Pipeworks and publisher Atari were adamant about the title being a little more accessible while still retaining the deep customization and park management system.

Still, returning to the classic formula was a challenge, and the folks involved were open to listening to the community about what they want for the next game.

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Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell was inspired by Disney movies photo
Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell was inspired by Disney movies
by Jordan Devore

I've played and enjoyed all of the Saints Row games to date, but wonder how much longer this can last. How much more ridiculous can the series get, and even if there is room to up the insanity, do we even want that? Where Volition goes from here, I'm not sure.

Gat Out of Hell, a standalone expansion, will give the studio some breathing room to figure that out while keeping the series on store shelves. As will Saints Row IV: Re-elected, a "Game of the Year"-style re-release for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Both are due out January 27, 2015.

I played a brief demo of Gat Out of Hell at PAX Prime over the weekend and spoke with studio creative director Steve Jaros about how the game is influenced by Disney films. Yes, really.

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N++ is going to break me, but I'm okay with that photo
N++ is going to break me, but I'm okay with that
by Jordan Devore

One of the games I knew I had to check out at the Indie Megabooth this PAX Prime was N++. I liked its predecessor on Xbox Live Arcade a great deal, which is to say it infuriated the hell out of me but was satisfying beyond words when I managed to push through the challenge.

This is a platformer, the kind that gives you precise control of a more-than-capable character who can bounce off walls. As such, the levels can require perfection -- or something close to it -- while technically still being "fair." Evil, yes, but not unfair.

Your ninja has a distinct momentum and weight, which you'll get a feel for after a while as you're eased into new obstacles and enemy types. It's been ages since I played N+, so I was rusty. But since I only had time to play cooperative and race levels with another PAX attendee, that didn't matter too much. Just needed to be better than the other guy.

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5:30 PM on 08.27.2014

Iron Fisticle looks a bit like Robotron x Gauntlet

Curve Digital made a name for itself in recent years by porting popular independent games like The Swapper and Thomas Was Alone to PlayStation platforms but Iron Fisticle, an upcoming twin-stick arcade arena shooter, is anoth...

Jordan Devore



Shadow Realms, the new BioWare RPG, has a lot of strong and unique ideas photo
Shadow Realms, the new BioWare RPG, has a lot of strong and unique ideas
by Brett Makedonski

Anytime you sit in on an early look at a new videogame, the presentation's sort of structured the same. Throughout the introduction to the title, the developers always -- always -- pepper the speech with catchy phrases about the approach that they wanted to take, their influences, and what they want to elicit from the players.

BioWare's showing of its newly announced Shadow Realms at gamescom 2014 fell right in line with these expectations. What makes it noteworthy is the sheer amount that the studio hopes to accomplish. After listening and talking to developers from BioWare at gamescom, it's evident that they have big ambitions for Shadow Realms. It's a title that aspires to do a lot of different things in a lot of different ways, and it's unclear right now how some of it will be executed. But, there appears to be solid framework to build around for now.

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5:30 PM on 08.21.2014

Heck yes: Protect Me Knight is getting a 3DS sequel

I've thankfully managed to forget about most of the Xbox Live Indie Games I subjected myself to over the years, but a few happy memories do remain. Ancient's Protect Me Knight, an 8-bit overhead action game about fending off...

Jordan Devore

7:00 PM on 08.20.2014

Fortified is a base defense shooter inspired by 1950s science fiction

Admittedly, Fortified looks rough around the edges at this pre-alpha stage, but I'm liking the concept of a third-person shooter centered around base defense in a 1950s sci-fi setting. You and up to three friends will throw ...

Jordan Devore

4:30 PM on 08.18.2014

Warframe's next update lets you fly around in space as a ninja

I had played a bit of Warframe on PC to see what it was about, thought it was merely okay, and moved on not much later, as you do. Digital Extremes' free-to-play cooperative action game has since come to PlayStation 4 -- and...

Jordan Devore

1:45 PM on 08.18.2014

The best version of Guacamelee! hits Steam on Thursday

Now that the console releases are out of the way, DrinkBox Studios is bringing Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition to Steam on Thursday. This expanded version of the hit action-platformer offers new areas, abilities...

Jordan Devore







Rediscover a Lara Croft you already know in Temple of Osiris photo
Rediscover a Lara Croft you already know in Temple of Osiris
by Brett Makedonski

Which Lara Croft do you prefer? Crystal Dynamics has two versions of her, splitting the iconic character into distinctly different properties. The recent Tomb Raider reboot and the scheduled follow-up Rise of the Tomb Raider paint Lara in a survivalist light -- someone that's fighting for her life more than anything else. That's all well and good, but you can't fault anyone that favors the other Lara; they're probably just used to her.

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris continues what 2010's Guardian of Light began -- getting back to the Tomb Raider roots with a star that had no problem mowing down anything in her path to find more treasure. She’s brash, she’s ruthless, and, (ideally) she has a few friends helping her.

Guardian of Light is highly regarded by most -- an isometric, top-down twin-stick shooter that was a delight to play. With few complaints from the fans, Crystal Dynamics knew that Temple of Osiris wasn’t an effort that it’d necessarily want to revamp, but rather just improve. The two levels that we played at gamescom 2014 indicate that it's certainly poised to do just that.

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Prepare to hate your co-op partner in Project Totem photo
Prepare to hate your co-op partner in Project Totem
by Brett Makedonski

Even though I wasn’t optimistic about the prospect, I wanted to put my best foot forward. With a cheery tone to my voice, I affirmed the stranger’s request to play Project Totem cooperatively with me. The entire meeting he had seemed so eager, feverishly scribbling down notes as the Press Play developers explained their unabashedly simple, yet deviously difficult game. I was the one playing and talking, but he probably deserved a shot too, right?

“Damnit, he’s going to suck, and it’s going to piss me off,” I thought.

And, I was right. Well, sort of. Project Totem’s co-op play is designed in such a way that you’ll probably come to this conclusion about your partner regardless of their skill set. Failures by me? Temporary miscue, sure to never happen again. Failures by him? Does this dolt even have opposable thumbs, or does he simply mash the controller against his forehead?

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1:15 PM on 08.13.2014

See some new screenshots for LittleBigPlanet 3

After the runaway success of the first two LittleBigPlanet titles on PS3, fans had been clamoring for a follow-up on Sony's new hardware. With the announcement of LittleBigPlanet 3 at E3 coming to both PS4 and PS3, the LBP co...

Alessandro Fillari

12:45 PM on 08.13.2014

Overkill is making a co-op shooter based on The Walking Dead

Payday creator Overkill Software is the next developer to try its hand at adapting The Walking Dead for videogames. The studio is currently working on a cooperative first-person shooter planned for release in 2016 called Over...

Jordan Devore



BioWare announces modern fantasy story-based 4 vs. 1 multiplayer RPG Shadow Realms photo
BioWare announces modern fantasy story-based 4 vs. 1 multiplayer RPG Shadow Realms
by Darren Nakamura

At the EA press conference today, BioWare announced its next project, Shadow Realms. Jeff Hickman, the Studio General Manager discussed its inspiration in old school pen and paper role-playing games, before elaborating on how that applies to the videogame.

Set in a "modern fantasy" world, the heroes form teams of four to do battle against the forces of the Shadow Lord, who controls a range of evil creatures. The result is an online role-playing game with asymmetric multiplayer.

Of course, BioWare throws in its own twist, where story remains a significant component of the gameplay. The studio plans to release content for Shadow Realms episodically, so the community can experience the progression of the story as it evolves together.

Shadow Realms is scheduled to release for PC "late next year," but it is currently playable at gamescom, and interested parties can sign up for the alpha at ShadowRealms.com.

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