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For a passion project, State of Mind feels oddly lifeless

The best part of my State of Mind demo was talking to Martin Ganteföhr, the game's director. He single-handedly convinced me that State of Mind needed to exist -- not because the game was any good (it isn't). Rather, Gan...   read

 
 
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It's been a long wait, but Dawn of War III is shaping up well

It's no secret that I've been happy about Relic's revival of the Dawn of War series amid the countless other Warhammer 40,000 video game adaptations materializing on a now-yearly basis. There's so gosh darn many of 'em! And, aside from a dr...   read

 
 
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Bleed 2 is the best Newgrounds game you never played

For a lot of youngsters (including myself!), Flash-based game sites like Newgrounds or Miniclip were a gateway to the world of video games. These sites were easily accessible from library/Boys & Girls Club desktops or your parents' work...   read

 
 
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South Park is great, Ubisoft farting directly into my face is not

The Nosulus Rift is real. Much to my chagrin, the Nosulus Rift is real. Ubisoft hoodwinked me into signing a waiver and strapping this abomination to my face. The things I do for this job. Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be games jo...   read

 
 
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I am not as good at typing as I thought I was

I fancy myself a decent typer-person. I have to do it all day for my job, and even though hunting and pecking would probably technically cut it, I'd die of embarrassment from being silently judged in press rooms. I'm just good enough t...   read

 
 
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Klei's Hot Lava is directly inspired by Counter-Strike

I can't say I expected to turn up at my PAX West appointment for Hot Lava and chat with Klei Entertainment about Counter-Strike mods, but the conversation kept returning to that point. While most of us viewed the upcoming game as a cool, so...   read

 
 
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Longing for more Castlevania? Chasm could be our best bet

In recent months, I've lost track of Chasm. I was on-board with the action-platform game when it was first coming through Kickstarter but, wow, that was actually back in 2013. Making games, even simple ones, takes lots of time. Making metro...   read

 
 
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Mages of Mystralia's spellcrafting is like programming magic

Typically, games at PAX fall into one of three categories: some aren't special enough to warrant more than a mention, some take a standard mechanic and execute it exceptionally well, and some invent a new way to think about or interact with...   read

 
 
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Some rushed first impressions after a fast Sonic Mania demo

At PAX West, Jordan and I spent maybe five minutes with Sonic Mania. Appropriate, really, given that the blue hedgehog's whole existence is framed around the concept of speed. In and out, super quick. That's all we needed to know that the g...   read

 
 
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Some thoughts after spending two hours with Final Fantasy XV

The food looks amazing but the trees are flat. Cindy's breasts are immaculate but her hair is clumpy. The car's doors open from the wrong direction. Prompto and Noctis enthusiastically high-fived after a very short and routine drive. Noctis...   read

 
 
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Rez Infinite's Area X made creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi cry 'many times'

If there's one game that'll push me into buying a PlayStation VR this October, it is Rez Infinite. Tetsuya Mizuguchi's musical on-rails shooter holds that much power over me. It's incomparable. While I haven't yet seen first hand how Rez ha...   read

 
 
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Battle Chef Brigade: two tastes tasting great together

Sometimes we joke about genre blending, as if some games are designed by shuffling a deck of cards with mechanics written on them and then choosing two at random. At first glance, Battle Chef Brigade looks like it could have been a result o...   read

 
 
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I annoyed robots until they went insane in The Fall Part 2

I'll be honest, I didn't expect to ever hear news of The Fall Part 2: Unbound, let alone play a demo on the PAX West show floor. Not just because the first installment ended on a perfect thematic conclusion, although I could understand...   read

 
 
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The Duke Nukem 3D remake is the best version of an iconic game

My previous experience with the Duke Nukem franchise has thus far been relegated to Duke Nukem Forever, an overwhelmingly unpleasant experience that I cannot recommend to anyone with a pulse. As a result, when I wandered into Gearbox S...   read

 
 
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World of Final Fantasy combines monster catching with the Tower of Hanoi

I had an hour to check out four games Square Enix was showing at PAX West this year. One was Dragon Quest Builders, which Chris just looked at recently. Two others were old games being brought up to current visual standards, Final Fantasy X...   read

 
 
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We Are Chicago has a lot of potential and not much else

I respect We Are Chicago. It's a game that applies the Telltale choice-based model to low-income families living on the South Side of Chicago. The script was penned by a high school guidance counselor who spent his life in neighborhoods jus...   read

 
 
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Strafe is exactly how you remember the year 1996

I recently swung (swang?) by the Devolver Digital booth at PAX West 2016 to take a good hard look at STRAFE, a hardcore-old-school-ultra-stylized-FPS-roguelike-simulated-gorefest. I've been side-eying STRAFE since its ridiculous Kickstarter...   read

 
 
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Children of Morta has all the ingredients to be the next great roguelike

The term "roguelike" has been bastardized a bit and can cause some confusion at times, but I think most people can think of a few traits that always persist. Permadeath, randomized level design and possibly powerups, and tough difficulty ar...   read

 
 
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Hand of Fate 2 mixes the very best of Gwent and D&D

Hand of Fate 2 is many things. It's a deck-building game. It's a brawler with Arkham-like combat. It's Dungeons and Dragons. It's all of these things simultaneously, taking the best parts of each, creating something that manages t...   read

 
 
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Gears of War's Horde mode is greatly enhanced by adding classes

When it comes to Gears of War, all the variation is in the weapons. Each character operates the exact same, it's just the armaments that change gameplay. Someone toting a Boomshot is going to maneuver very differently than someone sporting ...   read

 
 
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Shadow Warrior 2 commits the worst sin of all: It's boring

When I look at Shadow Warrior 2, I don't see a video game. I see a piece of scenery you would put in the background of a television show or movie to easily communicate that a character is a "hardcore gamer." It's visually arresting in that ...   read

 
 
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Rock Band VR has completely changed, now it's style over skill

The last time we saw Rock Band VR, the best summary of the experience was a simple "Well, it's Rock Band, but in VR." Six months later, that's no longer the case. Not even close, actually. Harmonix has completely reworked the game, to the p...   read

 
 
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From our community  

Heading to PAX this week? Adopt an Avatar!

Nope, if James Cameron's involved, something's probably wrong. So, you're heading to PAX West this weekend? Great! But let's not forget about all those folks who aren't so fortunate. Penny Arcade eXposition tickets are a hot commodity, and ...   read

 
 
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We're probably getting more Duke Nukem soon

Countdown timers have one universal meaning: Something's gonna happen. Rarely does a timer show up on the internet and it turns out to be for naught. Sometimes the result's underwhelming, but at least something happened. That's the app...   read

 
 
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PAX Indie Megabooth's layout, games finalized

It's hard to believe, but PAX West is only a few weeks away. One of the most interesting parts of PAX each year is the Indie Megabooth, an area of the show floor highlighting upcoming releases from smaller developers that might otherwise sl...   read

 
 



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