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Developer stuff

Quantum Break photo
Quantum Break

Quantum Break sure has changed over the last four years


Before it got Shawn Ashmore'd
Feb 07
// Zack Furniss
I haven't been following Quantum Break too closely, even though I love Max Payne and Alan Wake. What I've seen so far has felt a bit generic, lifeless, and grey, so I'm hoping that Remedy's traditional biz...
Reactions photo
Reactions

Tommy Refenes REACTS to kids REACTING to Super Meat Boy


All caps because that stings more
Feb 01
// Brett Makedonski
Tommy Refenes, half the development team of Super Meat Boy, made a reaction video over the weekend. That's a rebellious thing to do because popular YouTubers The Fine Brothers are currently in the process of trying to tradem...
Hellblade photo
Hellblade

I forgot to mention Tameem's f***hat in that Hellblade video


Please forgive me
Jan 29
// Zack Furniss
When I typed up that post about Hellblade's newest developer video, something jumped out at me: director Tameem Antoniades' hat. I made a mental note to mention it, but then ended up focusing on the motion capture. I've made ...
Rare throwback photo
Rare throwback

Let's listen to David Wise play the Battletoads theme


Another Rare Revealed video
Jan 28
// Jordan Devore
Well, this is just lovely. If you've been enjoying Rare's behind-the-scenes videos looking back at its decades of video game development, today's upload is another treat. Longtime Rare composer David Wise talks about what it ...

Destiny photo
Destiny

Bungie president steps down, new CEO announced


'Destiny is a one-of-a-kind experience'
Jan 28
// Vikki Blake
Harold Ryan has stepped down as Bungie's president.  As yet a replacement president has not been announced, although former COO Pete Parsons will be taking up a new position as CEO. Though there’s no explanations a...
The Witness photo
The Witness

Jonathan Blow's pee in a bottle


'Developer stuff' is a good tag here
Jan 21
// Brett Makedonski
Jonathan Blow, developer of soon-to-be-released The Witness, has resorted to peeing in a bottle. Or, he insinuates that at least. This is a bottle with what looks to be a good amount of urine in it, along with the caption "He...
Phantom Dust photo
Phantom Dust

Microsoft files new Phantom Dust trademark... again


Maybe 2016 is the year it happens?
Jan 20
// Vikki Blake
If you thought Phantom Dust was dead, think again - Microsoft has, once again, filed a new trademark application. The filing - which was spotted by those cool cats at DualShockers - was made on January 13, 2016 and is listed...
Capcom Vancouver photo
Capcom Vancouver

Dead Rising studio shifts to Unreal Engine for upcoming games


Capcom Vancouver is hiring
Jan 13
// Jordan Devore
Capcom Game Studio Vancouver, best known for the Dead Rising series, is expanding. A number of full-time positions are now open as the team focuses its efforts on Unreal Engine 4 going forward. "We have some ambitious visions...
Devs Play photo
Devs Play

Devs Play season two has over five hours of game makers chatting


Spyro, Crash, Tearaway, and more
Jan 07
// Jordan Devore
Whether it's games, movies, books, whatever, I love listening to creators talk about their craft. It can be enthralling to hear how the creative process differs between not only mediums, but individuals. One video series I'm ...
Japanese devs on 2016 photo
Japanese devs on 2016

Notable Japanese developers share their plans for 2016


No rest for Sakurai
Jan 05
// Jordan Devore
Once again, Weekly Famitsu polled a bunch of Japanese game developers about their aspirations for the new year. Perusing this summary provided by Gematsu, a few responses stood out. "We'll safely release Persona 5 in 2016... ...
Platinum Games photo
Platinum Games

Making Bayonetta almost destroyed Platinum Games


But now it's stronger than ever
Dec 28
// Zack Furniss
Back in September, GameSpot submerged itself in the depths of Platinum Games. It has now emerged with a treasure trove of details about all of the work going into the studio's upcoming games, such as Nier: Automata,...
Rare photo
Rare

A lost look at Rare's scrapped SNES project that eventually became Banjo-Kazooie


It was almost Bunny-Kazooie
Dec 22
// Brett Makedonski
With the archival nature of Rare Replay -- a collection of games on Xbox One that spans the developer's entire history -- it's natural that the studio would be digging through a lot of old boxes lately. One of those box...
Remedy photo
Remedy

I could spend all day watching Sam Lake doing Sam Lake stuff


It's a Lake
Dec 22
// Brett Makedonski
I guess the sticking point from this here video is that Remedy's working on putting an Alan Wake easter egg in Quantum Break. A responsible writer would've focused on that, maybe crafted an SEO-friendly headline, came up wit...
AMD photo
AMD

AMD was so angry at Geralt's hair, it made an open-source graphics API for developers


A direct challenge to Nvidia's GameWorks
Dec 16
// Joe Parlock
Nvidia’s GameWorks is a widely used toolkit that allows developers to add fancy visual effects and cool physics simulations to their game without costing them too much development time. The toolkit has some awesome effe...
Swery photo
Swery

It's tequila time! Watch Swery drink and explain inspirations for his games


Gold, just like a reposado
Dec 15
// Brett Makedonski
If you're going drinking in Osaka, Swery looks to be about the best tour guide you could ask for. If you want to know a little more about Swery's life and the inspiration behind his games, this video looks to be about the be...
Kojima photo
Kojima

Hideo Kojima reportedly forming new studio


I'd love to see him do a new IP
Dec 15
// Jordan Devore
[Update: Hideo Kojima has confirmed that his contract with Konami was terminated as of December 15, 2015, and that he has established an independent studio called, heh, Kojima Productions. Its first game is a "new franchise" ...
Microsoft photo
Microsoft

Xbox boss is '100% committed' to keeping you engaged with Xbox consoles


'I love that console experience'
Dec 11
// Vikki Blake
Xbox boss Phil Spencer has confirmed that Microsoft is already looking ahead to the next generation console. Talking to The Verge about the future of consoles in an age where TVs and mobile devices are becoming smar...
Documentary photo
Documentary

This Psychonauts making-of is a fun look at early Double Fine


The Color of the Sky in Your World
Dec 10
// Jordan Devore
After hearing that Double Fine was crowdfunding Psychonauts 2, the first thought to pop in my head was "Will there be another documentary?" 2 Player Productions did such a remarkable job capturing the studio's work on Broken ...
Grand Theft Auto photo
Grand Theft Auto

Why doesn't Rockstar release a new GTA game every year?


Take-Two Talks
Nov 20
// Vikki Blake
Rockstar's parent company, Take-Two, has opened up about why it does not annualise the release its biggest titles like Grand Theft Auto, Max Payne, and Red Dead Redemption. Talking at MKM Partners Investor Day in New York Cit...
Free eBook photo
Free eBook

Amazon has The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers for free


Download Volume 1
Nov 13
// Jordan Devore
Just yesterday, I was reading up on a canceled decades-old Konami fighting game whose character sketches are, uh, better seen than described. What a what-if! The information originated from author John Szczepaniak and his boo...
Swery65 photo
Swery65

Swery65 is taking a break from game development


Get well soon, Swery!
Nov 06
// Ben Davis
Game designer Swery65, best known for creating Deadly Premonition and D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die, posted on the Access Games blog today that he will be taking a short break from game development to recover from reactive hypogl...
Konami LA photo
Konami LA

Konami Los Angeles Studio to be closed, staff laid off


It's about sending a message
Nov 03
// Mike Cosimano
According to multiple industry sources (including former Dtoid CEO Hamza Aziz!), Konami has closed its Los Angeles studio, formerly known as Kojima Productions Los Angeles. Duke Nukem creator George Broussard was on...
Metal Gear photo
Metal Gear

Kojima shows how he made Metal Gear Solid V's 'Nuclear' trailer


Behind-the-scenes video translated
Nov 02
// Jordan Devore
Few trailers rival the "Nuclear" video for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. I must've watched it half a dozen times when it debuted last year at E3, and probably doubled that number leading up to the game's release in Se...

Review: Human Resource Machine

Oct 30 // Laura Kate Dale
Human Resource Machine (PC [reviewed], Wii U)Developer: Tomorrow CorporationPublisher: Tomorrow CorporationReleased: October 15, 2015MSRP: $9.99, £6.99 Human Resource Machine is a game that functionally aims to teach its players basic visual programming logic. You are a human, programming analogue tasks need completing on a day to day process. Players will need to create a visual programming loop that will allow you to mindlessly complete your task over and over. The reason you need to do your job in an efficient, automated, programming manner? Robots are coming to take your job. Initially, these programming tasks are accessible enough for non coders to wrap their head around quickly. Need to transport all inbox items to the outbox in an unchanged order? Take an item from the inbox, take it to the outbox, loop back to the start until everything has been moved. Need to take a pair of inbox items and take them to the outbox, but in the opposite order? Take the first item, place it on the floor, take the second item to the outbox. Pick the first item off the floor, take that to the outbox. Jump to the start and repeat. The problem is, around half way through the game starts requiring you to understand programming logic concepts it hasn't taught you before. Reading up on these concepts online can be complex, and working out how to build a programming function after only short while being hand held through basics can be rather frustrating. [embed]318222:60916:0[/embed] Here's one: build a machine that recognizes zero sum strings, then add up everything in the string, then create a Fibonacci sequence up to but not exceeding the value of your zero sum string, and place all values from the resulting Fibonacci sequence into the outbox using a limited set of tools. You can copy from or to limited memory spaces on the floor, add held and stored values together or increase a memory value by one. That kind of logic takes several considerable leaps, on top of trying to master a technique you only just learned for the first time. I think ultimately this is my biggest problem with Human Resource Machine. It's presented in advertising as a step by step tutorial on learning programming logic, but for newcomers to code some of the logical leaps are to complex to get through any method besides trial and error. For those who already program, much of the early game will likely be too easy. I feel like Machine doesn't really commit fully to being a game for new coders or for experienced programmers. It tries and fails to straddle a difficulty line. The game's plot is also essentially non-existent. The trailer tells you robots are coming for your job, which would clearly be better performed by a robot. Eventually, robots arrive and are better at your job than you. Some of the hints of an interesting story are there, but there is no pay off at all. Considering the subtly delivered narratives in World of Goo and Little Inferno, this was a real shame. Still, let's talk a little about what Human Resource Machine gets right. For those who keep up with the programming challenges as they are introduced, there are also a pair of optional optimization challenges for each puzzle -- such as, "have fewer than X instructions in your program," or "completely process the data in less than Y moves." Often it's impossible to complete both challenges with a single program, so it pushes you to re-optimize processes rather than just finding a solution that works. Learning where you could cut dead weight from a programming string felt hugely rewarding. The game also encourages players to not just successfully process a given set of data, but behind the scenes multiple sets of data are run through your program to ensure it works for every set, not just the current set. If a data set exists for which your program would break, that data set is provided to you, so you can debug the program step by step and see where it falls apart. The inclusion of step by step debugging tools to watch where your program's holes are was really beneficial, and encouraged understanding how your solution works, rather than just being content with the success itself. I came out of Human Resource Machine unsure who it was really designed for. It's at times too simple for experienced programmers, and often made leaps too large for beginners to overcome without obtuse outside research. While I had a sense of accomplishment every time I made progress, said progress at times felt like I was an infant thrown into water and expected to swim straight away. I might manage it, but it's not the ideal teaching method to leave me feeling comfortable going forward. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Human Resource Machine photo
My brain is not a machine
Tomorrow Corporation, the studio behind World of Goo and Little Inferno, is one of my favorite indie developers of the last couple of years. Known for creating polished indie games with accessible mechanics and interesti...

Rise of the Tomb Raider photo
Rise of the Tomb Raider

Find out more about Lara Croft in this new video series


Insert "Wild 'n' Wet" jokes here
Oct 22
// Vikki Blake
As we countdown to the launch of Rise of the Tomb Raider, Microsoft has released a new video series called "Woman vs. Wild." The new series will offer "a deep dive into the gameplay mechanics" in Croft's journey. 
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Professional game developers try their hands at Super Mario Maker


Check out how the pros do it
Oct 12
// CJ Andriessen
Bertil Horberg, the creator of the fantastic Gunman Clive series, was once asked if he would create a level in Super Mario Maker worthy of his premier franchise. He declined, saying he already knows how painfully difficult le...
HoloLens photo
HoloLens

HoloLens dev kits are $3,000 (apply now!)


Shipping Q1 2016
Oct 06
// Jordan Devore
I remember hearing chatter that Microsoft's augmented-reality headset, HoloLens, would cost significantly more than an Xbox One. While we probably won't know the exact price tag for quite a while, the company has begun taking...
Conker photo
Conker

Before Conker's Bad Fur Day, there was Twelve Tales


Rare reminisces about the N64 days
Oct 02
// Jordan Devore
Rare has shared another behind-the-scenes video about Conker and this one sure brings me back. Conker's Quest, as it was originally called before undergoing a name change to Twelve Tales: Conker 64, debuted at E3 in 1997. It ...
Havok photo
Havok

Intel is selling Havok to Microsoft


Floppy bodies
Oct 02
// Jordan Devore
Microsoft is purchasing physics engine maker Havok from Intel for an undisclosed sum. The company confirmed with IGN that the technology will continue to be licensed to "the broad AAA games industry," including companies maki...
Gettin' Medieval photo
Gettin' Medieval

Rare opens up about its unreleased Conker game


Conker: Gettin' Medieval
Sep 28
// Jordan Devore
After finishing work on Conker: Live & Reloaded, Rare pursued another project set in that universe called Conker: Gettin' Medieval. It was going to be an Xbox multiplayer game, not a direct continuation of the Bad Fur Day...

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