Arrowhead Game Studios

Gauntlet's pre-E3 "Relics" trailer shows off some flashy ways to kill

Andy Chalk at

The original Gauntlet made a big splash in arcades back in the mid-80s and so I don't remember all that terribly much about it, but as I recall your primary weapons against the overwhelming hordes of evil were food and quarters. The new Gauntlet takes a somewhat more modern approach, allowing players to gear up with "relics" that will enable all sorts of new and interesting ways to turn enemies into paste.

Gauntlet reboot announced, is being developed by Magicka's creators

Phil Savage at

Outside of Kickstarter, the revival of old franchises is often a thing to dread. Usually, their announcement comes with terrible omens like "iOS" and "in-app purchases". Not so for Gauntlet, which, on the basis of the announcement trailer, will be a Steam exclusive. Perhaps more encouraging is who's responsible for it. Magicka creators Arrowhead are taking the reigns of this Warner Brothers-published dungeon crawling reboot.

The Showdown Effect gets two free characters and maps, plus "terrifying hats"

Tom Sykes at

The Showdown Effect is currently 50% off on Steam, and in a startling coincidence (well, probably not) the explosive sidescrolling action game has just been updated with a bunch of new, mostly free stuff. The two additional stages comprise the Tagliatelle Western-themed South Eastwood and Fort Fiesta, while the new characters are...considerably less Wild Westy. Thelma Vayne is a British superspy, while Dr. Johnny Bionic is, you guessed it, a werewolf cyborg. There's also the matter of some "terrifying hats", but I'm too afraid to check if they live up to their reputation. Stick around for the DLC trailer.

The Showdown Effect review

PC Gamer at

When the title screen introduces The Showdown Effect as ‘An Arrowhead game with references’, they’re not kidding. Like its studio stablemate Magicka, it’s packed with affectionate send-ups of pop culture tropes and personalities, focusing this time on the cheesy action movies of the ’80s and ’90s with only occasional forays into internet memes and bad CSI:NY dialogue.

Appropriately, it’s a mix of shooter, 2D fighter and um, platformer (remember that film where Sylvester Stallone did all those walljumps?). It provides support for up to eight-player brawls between an ensemble cast of Hollywood archetype heroes and thinly-veiled actor pastiches. It’s not uncommon to see a good cop on his last day before retirement going katana-to-katana with Liam Neeson, for example. For a gimmick, it’s executed with enough conviction to become genuinely entertaining – at least before the constant barrage of barely-applicable one-liners starts to wear thin.

The Showdown Effect character trailer introduces a cast of action flick clichés

Omri Petitte at

The Showdown Effect, the upcoming run-and-gun side-scroller from Magicka creators Arrowhead, isn't just about ludicrously exaggerated shooting sprees. It's also about ludicrously exaggerated shooting sprees punctuated by the best sort of cheesy action-movie one-liners this side of a Schwarzenegger quip.

The Showdown Effect launches beta sign-up page and trailer, takes aim for March launch

Phil Savage at

Arrowhead - the guys responsible for the barmy Magicka - are now taking sign-ups for the beta of their upcoming The Showdown Effect, a sort of 2D side-scrolling Action: Half Life. The game features up to eight players battling it out with weapons ripped from the hands of cheesy 80s action heroes. In that spirit, they've released a trailer that crams in as many clichéd one-liners as a Google for "stupid things said in bad movies" can find.

Magicka patch notes are just as hilarious as the actual game

Omri Petitte at

Arrowhead's fourth-wall-busting, spell-slinging adventure Magicka received a new entry in its arcane codex of patch notes today. But in true Magicka fashion, the fixed bugs and slight tweaks were cheekily presented alongside an abundance of flavor text carrying Arrowhead's snappy wit. Funny samples include "Fixed an issue with collision checks that resulted in multiple fall damage. Large Hadron Collider consulted, collisions now in check," and "Reduced the physical damage resistance of Enraged Goblin Warlocks. Let’s face it, Warlocks sound all-powerful, but they’re really just a bunch of pansies." Continue on for the full patch notes.

Magicka: The Stars are Left review

Richard Cobbett at

Gaming’s spice rack is a scary thing. Is that FPS starting to taste a little bland? Add zombies. Need a little kick to your fantasy game? Try a dollop of Elder God, perhaps with a touch of cinnamon to help wash away the funny aftertaste of madness, seaweed, and the inevitable doom of all flesh.

Unfortunately, Magicka’s Lovecraft-themed DLC goes little further than adding a little of this extra flavouring. Your group of up to four wizards has accidentally woken the Big Calamari, and only copious amounts of fire bombs, lightning walls, ARSE mines and whatever else you can mix up with your trusty palette of elements are going to send him to bed without his supper. World of Lovecraft, if you will.

Magicka: The Stars are Left DLC adds new campaign levels, robes and monsters, out now

Tom Senior at

[embed width="610" height="340"][/embed]

The Stars are Left adds several sinister new campaign missions to Magicka, complete with tentacled Lovecraftian bosses, new enemies and new outfits. The pack also comes with a couple of challenge maps and there's a new trailer, which may be the first H. P. Lovecraft/film noir comedy crossover film ever made. Hopefully it's not the last. The Stars are Left is available now for £3.99 / $5.99 on Steam and Gamersate.

Play Magicka for free on Steam this weekend

Henry Winchester at

‘Tis a grand weekend for indie gaming on Steam. In addition to the Super Meat Boy Pack, bonkers co-op RPG Magicka is free until 9pm on Sunday, and, yes, developers Arrowhead Game Studios have fixed most of the bugs. There’s also a wizard’s sleeve worth of offers on Steam, including Magicka itself for £1.99, a four-pack for you and three chums for £5.99, and the Magicka Collection - including all DLC - for £4.24. Magic!

Just go here to download it.

Magicka: The Stars Are Left trailer zaps Cthulhu with magical lasers

Tom Hatfield at

Rock Paper Shotgun have spotted a trailer for Magikca's new expansion, The Stars Are Left. It promises, in typical Magicka style, the chance to 'kick Lovecraftian butt' in a new campaign. Time to get those ARSE mines ready, they are the only thing cosmic horrors truly fear.

Along with the paid expansion, there'll also be a massive free patch that addresses a number of issues with the game, improves the visuals and makes the whole thing far more user friendly. Full patch notes inside.

Magicka: The Stars are Left expansion incoming, "we make fun of Minecraft this time" say devs

Henry Winchester at

Ah Magicka, with your completely bonkers expansions. Joining this year’s Vietnam is The Stars are Left, a ‘spandey based on H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos, spotted over on RPS. Scheduled to launch this winter, it includes a new adventure campaign, which is one of the most requested features for the co-op spell ‘em up.

Like Vietnam, only the host player needs the expansion for others to join in - an act described by developer Arrowhead Studios’ colleagues as, “More insane than a black goat with a thousand young.” We don’t believe for one minute that anyone actually said that.

Magicka's buggy launch: "We didn't know the game was being released"

Graham Smith at

Wizarding adventure Magicka might have gone on to sell 600,000 copies, but the game had a rocky start. When the game first launched, players experienced bugs that made it basically unplayable in both singleplayer and multiplayer, and it was weeks before it was stable.

At E3 last month, I spoke to Emil Englund, one of the founders of developers Arrowhead Game Studios, and asked him how the buggy launch happened.

Magicka Dev Diary: PvP is here!

Arrowhead Game Studios at

After weeks of waiting in anticipation, Magicka PvP has finally arrived. Now you can prove your wicked wizard skills by pummeling your friends and enemies alike with the power of the elements. Following last week's entry, the Arrowhead devs are back to thank the dedicated Magicka fans and explain some retuned spell mechanics. Whether you're about to go try some Magicka PvP or just got out of a match, you should definitely check this out.

Magicka Dev Diary: A multitude of modes

Arrowhead Game Studios at

Last time we checked in with the Magicka devs, they were debunking the ancient technique of "water bombing" and the frustrations of losing character control. Come take a seat at the Arrowhead campfire and listen to tales of PvP glory and fights to the death.

Magicka: Vietnam review

Tom Senior at

A helicopter lands in a jungle glade and four wizards jump out. A vampire in aviator shades leans out of the chopper: “Oogle blurble barble ’Nam!” he says. The wizards, wearing helmets and flack jackets over their robes, nod to each other and charge off into the jungle. Magicka: Vietnam’s first moments set the scene nicely for the madness to come.

Magicka’s first expansion throws your pint sized combat-mages into a fantastical version of the Vietnam War, in which the Vietcong are replaced by gun-toting goblins, and the US forces by a team of one to four psychotic wizards. There’s a rescue mission and a survival arena to battle through, both of which ask the important question: what’s best, magic, or bullets?

Magicka Dev Diary: Water bombing and crowd control

Arrowhead Game Studios at

In the last Magicka Dev Diary, we got insight into the fine art of balancing PvP for a game that gives you so much freedom when it comes to spellcasting. Now, the dev team from Arrowhead tells us what their beef is with crowd control abilities, and why fights in the Magicka arena are never over 'til they're over.

Magicka Dev Diary: Shards, shields, and spam

Arrowhead Game Studios at

Magicka taps into the curiosity in all of us; we can't help but want to know how two elements will react together. But, more importantly, how effective will the result be at killing stuff? Soon, however, enemies won't just include monsters and your "buddy" who always seems to friendly-fire a Meteor Storm right on your head. PvP is finally making its way to Magicka, and the devs from Arrowhead Game Studios want to tell you all about. Come and enjoy a sit-down chat with Arrowhead's Johan Pilestedt. Feel free to brew some tea while you read.

Magicka's best spells

Tom Hatfield at

Magicka: Vietnam was released last week, and we love it. The best part is the glorious union of guns and spells, and the experimentation that comes from combining different elements into spectacular new magics. We've gathered ten of the most explosive, useful and entertaining spells we could find.

Magicka: Vietnam now available on Steam

Dan Stapleton at

Paradox has unleashed its lighthearted parody DLC upon the world. Magicka's element-conjuring wizards are, for some reason that really doesn't matter, now battling enemies in Vietnam with assault rifles and napalm. It's incredibly preposterous, and therefore awesome. You can grab the insanity on Steam for $5.

Who's tried it, and what do you think? Is it so crazy that it works, or too soon? View the launch trailer after the jump.