Microsoft has just started a contest to get the community to come up with an App for their upcoming Windows Phone 7 line of smartphones. My idea is simply a copy of Sony's Remote Play. Yes, its plain copying, but the industry works like that. The Windows Phone 7 line is perfect to do this. The PSP is used in certain games to display info or parts of the HUD, as well as display the dashboard. So why can't a new Window's phone?
I have submitted this app idea to the site and hope to see it reach some sort of popularity. As a gamer who is interested in Microsoft's new semi-gaming handheld, I would love to see this thing to come to fruition. If anyone here would like to vote for the app, simply go here.
I have written this pretty quickly so please excuse my post for being so short. But think about the benefit of having a feature like this accessible to Windows Phone 7 and Xbox 360 owners.
Upon looking at the Downloadable Content menu in Alan Wake, we have noticed that not only has “The Signal” been detailed with a countdown, but a 2nd DLC chapter has been announced. “The Writer” will be 800MSP and will have Alan enduring strange scenarios of some sort. The signal is not available for 2 months and yet another DLC is listed after it. Maybe this menu update was a glitch and not intended to be shown so soon, but we caught it.
Alan Wake has been in development for over five years, it went through major story and gameplay changes, but the final product is finally here. Remedy is know for its amazing story telling, because of the Max Payne series. They aim to do it again with Alan Wake. This time they go with a T.V. series format. Has development hell produced another underwhelming game? Will Alan Wake deliver the tension and thrills? Find out after the jump.
Alan Wake is about a writer named, well, you guessed it, Alan Wake. Alan is a struggling famous writer of thriller novels. He gets struck with writers block, and His wife Alice decides that they need to get away from it all, and they take their trip to the beautiful mountain town of Bright Falls. It’s not long into their stay that it all goes to hell, quite literally. A dark presence lives in the town, and it has become aware of Alan’s arrival. The story of Alan Wake is to be treated like a television series. There are episodes, “Previously on…” clips before each episode and small cliffhangers between them. Think of Alan Wake as season 1 of a series. This format does has an effect on how the story unfolds, but labeling it as such didn’t really seem significant. The game has numerous cutscenes that are pretty well done. The acting is spot on. My only gripe with the cast of characters has to be Barry, Alan’s best friend and agent. Most thrillers have a comic relief to lighten the mood once and a while, but I think Barry’s character was just a bit too annoying. I wouldn’t exactly say most of the cast was cliche, but there are the traditional character types seen in any horror or thriller. But that works here because the game is meant to be like a show.
Alan Wake plays like an action title but throws you into horror situations. Don’t misjudge this statement. The controls are very fluid and work very well. Alan Wake, the character, isn’t some sort of beefy bad ass, hes a writer. This game is a horror thriller through and through. Alan can run, dodge and fight. Dodging takes some timing and sometimes its downright impossible to dodge a large object being hurled at you. Cinematic dodges do feel very nice when pulled off. A small stamina meter would have been appreciated. Conserving your stamina for when you really need to run is key and a meter would have been nice. Alan’s primary weapon is a flashlight, that accompanied by a gun is the only way to take down the Taken. A Taken is a possessed citizen of Bright Falls that has become nothing but a shell for the Dark Presence. To destroy one, you must focus your flashlight on it until the lens flair like circle fades down. Then they are susceptible to damage. Enemy A.I. is very good. Taken will flank you any chance they get. You must always watch your back when in a fight.
Batteries must be scavenged to fuel your flashlight. Focusing the light decreases the energy left, juggling reloading and battery switching leads to as frantic but awesome feeling. Enemy types range from the possessed farmers, hunters, birds, cops and even possessed objects. Enemies are pretty creepy. The Taken love to spout random nonsensical things from their past life before possession. The larger the possessed creature or thing, the harder to break it’s defense. There are a few weapon types. The standard revolver, 2 types of shotguns, a rifle, a flare gun, and the defense objects. The defense objects are road flares and flashbangs. Holding a flare makes the Taken retreat but still follow you. You can drop one down to block off narrow passages temporarily. A flashbang acts much like a grenade rather than what it’s normally used for. The quick burst of light kills any taken in its immediate vicinity.
Light poles are considered “Safe Havens” due to their strong light. Alan can simply run into one and all the near by enemies retreat. They also recover all lost health. Scattered around the town are hidden chests with ammo and supplies. They are found by reading writing only visible in the light.
The game was once an open sandbox where you the player could tour Bright Fall, but Remedy changed that mid development for a more linear approach. While I would have loved to see this game be set in an open world, I’m pretty sure the graphics wouldn’t have been as good as they are. Levels are linear and only one way leads to the end, but there is a lot of exploration room. Deviations usually lead to supply caches or an hidden collectible. The town looks great. Every level has a certain realness to it that makes it seem less like a game level and more authentic.
There are collectible manuscript pages scattered throughout Bright Falls, that detail events as they happened or will. Alan can collect these pages for clues as to what is going to happen or what other people are like when not directly in his presence. There are 106 pages to be found. The other collectibles are coffee thermoses. A small nod at Twin Peaks most likely. While the thermoses don’t have any story significance like the pages do, they are fun to collect. There are T.V. Shows to be watched, radio shows to be heard, and signs detailing the historical aspects of the town. There’s a good amount of collectibles to keep you occupied.
The graphics of Alan Wake are simply amazing. There has been debate whether the game is actually running in an HD resolution, but it doesn’t matter. The game looks great either way. The scenery, the mountainous vistas, the fog effects, and most importantly the lighting all create an amazing looking game. Lighting in Alan Wake has to be one of the best I’ve ever seen. It flows through the trees and windows with an eerily realistic look. Rooms are bathed in the light from outside. That coupled with the photorealistic textures creates an image that looks strikingly real. The lighting is a key player in setting the atmosphere of this horror thriller. Alan’s flashlight illuminates rooms and objects realistically and the lens flare that it creates when pointed at a Taken is a nice touch as well. The nighttime scenes look good as well, but not as nice as the daylight scenes. Yes, most of the game takes place at night, but the game really does shine graphically during the day. One thing that nagged at me was the transition to cutscenes. The amazingly realistic color pallet in game was pushed aside. The cutscenes are prerendered and look good, but the contrast changes so drastically that its hard not to notice. It sort of pulls you out of the scene when the colors change so much. Character models range from highly detailed to fairly decent. Of course Alan will look the best since hes the protagonist, but it would have been nice to see equally detailed characters.
The physics are not to be ignored either. Objects can come to life and attack you with realistic rolls and flips. Rooms can be moved with you still in them. Seeing furniture levitate and come to life is amazing. Further in the game is where it steps up a notch. Vehicles and structures move and fall realistically while in game. Having a school bus hurled at me has never been this awesome. And yes, it has happened before. I don’t want to get into it… The only issue I’ve had with the physics was that occasionally an object that was not possessed hurt me. It could been a simple room chair or an object I happened to land on when jumping down from a ledge. There were just times I would walk into an object and have it lash back at me in a fit. A small but annoying issue.
Alan Wake is an amazing horror thriller told in six episodes. The game takes around 8-10 hours to complete. The ending has received some criticism, but as a fan of Lost, I found it pretty appropriate with the whole T.V. show feel. The best graphics I’ve seen on the Xbox 360, coupled with fantastic narrative, and nerve retching tension makes this game a must have for gamers and horror fans alike. The game has already been detailed as season 1, and based on sales, Remedy is looking to create a season 2. Alan Wake will continue to be supported via DLC, so don’t throw out that redeem card found in brand new copies. It’ll net you that first new episode for free. I can’t wait to see what is in store for the Alan Wake series and the character.
-To be continued with paid DLC
*Original Post On HellDescent.com*
HellDescent.com is a survival horror videogame fan site made for and by fans of the horror genre.
In an interview with fearnet, Resident Evil: Afterlife producer, Don Carmody causally announced the start date for filming of Silent Hill 2.
“Can you give us anything on Silent Hill 2?
Just that we are hoping to start it in late spring in Toronto.”
The 2nd film has been questioned as to if it will ever start filming, and if a new screenplay writer will be needed due to Roger Avary’s recent arrest for manslaughter (DUI leading to someones death). We will just have to wait for more info regarding the Silent Hill sequel. While Silent Hill may have been one of the best video game movie adaptations, die hard Silent Hill fans were disappointed with the casual use of Pyramid Head, and deviation from the source material. We can only hope that the team will hear out the fans (LIKE US).
O.K., we know that we have obsessive issues, but we can’t help it! Looking back at the trailer, we found the message “CONVERGE” flash onto Isaac’s face. It makes sense with the whole “Make us whole again.” line. So yeah, we spent about half an hour decoding that. Those Unitologist characters all start to look the same after awhile you know? The text can be seen at the :59 second mark.
Being the ever observant people we are, we have screencapped 3 new Necromorph types seen in the Dead Space 2 trailer, that was just released today. At first we were worried that all the new types would be gray zombie looking creatures, but that's thankfully not the case. After the break we have detailed the 3 new creatures.
We are pretty sure that this is the new Puker Necromorph type, all though he seems more damaged. this could possibly mean that there will be alternate stages of each necromorph type. He is just about to spray a nasty bunch of goo at the camera and we caught it right before the money shot. It's chest can be seen expanding and his sternum is completely parted. Because this is a videogame, be sure that the vomit will be highly acidic. It doesn't seem able to walk either so we can expect it to either have been downed or a legless creature.
Look at the mug on this thing! Continuing with the idea of alternate/advanced forms of Necromorphs, we would say that this thing is the advanced form of Dead Space 1's Leaper. The comparison comes from the mandible type mouth and the arms being used to drag the body. The legs do seem to be separate though, so that could mess with our theory. Unless degrading or damage left them that way. New or alternate, this thing looks be be threatening.
Now this guy may just be a Slasher, but looks worth a mention anyway. It's appearance looks very reminiscent of the human it once was, but severe mutation can be seen. Left arm still normal, but its right transformed into a blade. Protruding from his back a very large scythe like appendage. Most likely this thing will have some reach, and distant fighting being a must. We are torn with whether he was a civilian or a medical worker. The clothes are from the future, so what ever fashion they have is out of our comprehension.
From just one teaser trailer, loads of info and questions are formed. We can't wait to find out more in the coming months. Look for our Dead Space 2 interview with Visceral mid May.