Tagged With 420

7

This week's Xbox One release of underwater horror game SOMA includes a new mode that dramatically changes monster behaviour to keep the player safe. Safe from the monsters anyhow.

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Commandos was a very good video game. It's also a kind of game that we haven't seen much of since, so it's nice to see Shadow Tactics step in and deliver us a similar kind of experience. Well, as similar as swapping World War Two for Japan's Edo period can get, anyway.

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Thomas Was Alone, Mike Bithell's charming 2010 platformer about the inner lives of hopping geometric shapes, was an experiment in the power of storytelling to triumph over abstraction. Volume, Bithell's new game, is also a successful experiment in abstraction, although the narrative is realistic, or realistic science fiction. This time, it's the interactions that are stripped to their essences.

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The mission seems to be going well enough; it's been tough, but you've persevered, making your way through some tense situations by avoiding the gaze of patrolling guards. You've just infiltrated the enemy base -- now it's time to assassinate someone. You're hiding, maybe in the bushes or around a corner, and wham, some guard spots you. Alarms sound, the world begins to move in slow motion, and an alert pops up on screen.

10


2012 was a banner year for stealth games. From January up through December, we got to play a healthy variety of games involving dozens of different types of sneaking, skulking, lurking and sklurking. (It's a thing.)

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The plague-infested streets and alleys of Dishonored's industrial city of Dunwall are rather dark and shadowy, but without proper use of stealth techniques one might as well be stomping through them on mechanical legs.

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Let's face it. If sweet science fictional rides like Airwolf or KITT actually existed, laymen like us wouldn't get first dibs. No, we'd probably get saddled with whatever comically impractical vehicles the Tony Starks of the world don't scoop up.

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What seemed great on paper — a World War II game like nothing else, with sophisticated artistry to boot — had to be turned into a video game. But then some things, not necessarily too many things, went wrong.

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From Software brought Tenchu Kurenai to the PS2 back in 2004, and now it is porting the game to the PSP. The title has been spruced up and optimised for the PSP's screen size.