One of the best things about reviewing video games is playing games that perhaps I would likely have never played, nor even heard of. Sometimes you discover a right gem, that takes a simple idea and implements it perfectly to create a fun or thought provoking experience that sticks with you long after you finish it. Other times, you get to take in some of the worst that the industry has to offer. ‘n Verlore Verstand, by South African based developer Skobbejak Games, is very much one of these games….
Developer Good Catch, based in London, describes Black and White Bushido as a ‘2D arena brawler that pits the forces of light and shadow against each other’ which sums the game up rather well. This is a game where 2 opposing sides tactically battle to win short matches making use of skills and the environment to gain the upper hand over their opponents.
It’s a frantic battle, with the game stressing under the sheer amount of attacks being exchanged. In amongst the mess Bullseye, one of the games many antagonists, gives as good as he takes despite the fact his health bar is plunging faster than the value of sterling. The lunacy only increases, as more and more players join the fray and soon it’s almost impossible to see where the enemies let alone where you are.
“Death is no escape down here”, the closing statement of the narrator as the tutorial comes to an end. This statement is probably true for most games, where death is really never more that an inconvenient setback rather than anything finite. Crawl however does things a bit differently, where death simply switches you from team living to team dead.
You play Scarlett Everitt, an apprentice alchemist who has just finished 5 years at university and is returning home only to find that things have changed considerably in her absence. Keen to start working under the local master alchemist, you instead suffer an encounter with a mysterious stranger which triggers flashbacks to memories of your missing parents, and this is where the game starts. If it all sounds a little familiar, well that’s because it very much is.
You stand a child adorned in a yellow rain coat, the only piece of colour amongst a wash of browns and greys in a dimly lit room littered with cloth, cages and a suspicious man with clumsily long arms and a face wrapped in bandages. He’s known as The Janitor, and up until now other than the odd suspicious shadow or rodent he is the first resident of The Maw that you have encountered. He stands, facing away from you hurriedly gift wrapping dolls in cloth before impaling each parcel upon…
3D platformers have recently undergone somewhat of a revival since their peak in the late 90s. Skylar & Plux: Adventure on Clover Island is another game to slot into that category and quote, is a “Passionate homage to the 3D platformers of our youth”. The game has been jointly developed by Right Nice, a recently founded studio based in Stockholm who have been responsible for the PC port, and Grip Digital, a studio of experienced industry hands based in Prague responsible for the Xbox One and PS4 ports.
For some of you older gamers, the name Wonder Boy might well sound somewhat familiar. You’ll need to cast you mind back quite some way however, all the way back to the 8 bit era of the late 1980s. Wonder Boy: The Dragons Trap is a remake of Wonder Boy 3 which was originally released on the Sega Master System back 1989. Developer Lizardcube initially announced the remake back in June 2016 and just under a year later the final product is now ready for a glance through those rose tinted glasses.
Video games as an entertainment medium have a unique ability to put a person at the centre of an experience in a way that no other medium can. All manner of subject matters and topics can be explored in unique and engaging fashions that simply won’t have the same impact if they were delivered any other way. There is an art to it though, and achieving it requires an intricate understanding of how to let a player discover and experience a story rather than just tell it, and this certainly seems…
I expect that most people are at least familiar with the Marvel universe and the vast amount of characters, stories, history, etc, that it has built up over the years. Marvel Heroes Omega sees one of the largest gathering of material from that vast back catalogue come together in a single video game which allows you to play as your favourite comic book hero and party up with your friends for some good old fashion good vs evil action.