Brave badlands explorers have scrounged around Wasteland 2's, er, wastes since its Early Access beta rode in from the dust last December. After a record-setting Kickstarter campaign, bug-bashing updates, and gradual expansions of playable areas, inXile feels the time is nigh for some post-apocalyptic ranging mixed with a little justice. Pin your sheriff's badge on the last weeks of August, because that's when Wasteland 2 launches in full.
Supergiant's first game, Bastion, drew much love for its space-cowboy score that fit perfectly with its fantasy world. The studio's sophomore work, Transistor, stages a gorgeous cyber reality accompanied by equally fitting electro-ambience from returning composer Darren Korb. And because Supergiant felt like being nice, the entirety of the game's music is up on Spotify for free listening.
It was originally scheduled for this fall, but we won't see Geralt stonily stare down his next monstrous foe in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt until next February. According to CD Projekt Red co-founder Marcin Iwinski, the extra development time is a commitment to quality, not a reaction to the October 7 release of BioWare's Dragon Age: Inquisition.
World War Machine looked like one of the more promising projects to come out of Square Enix’s crowdfunding Collective project. Admittedly, that’s mostly because the concept art for it looked cool, but it was hard to tell what it wanted it to be with its “post-human RPG” description. The game kicked off its crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo today with a first trailer, and we now know that, as Creative Director at Tuque Games Jeff Hattem says, “It's about blowing up robots—lots of freaky way-too-organic-looking robots.”
Bioware are teasing some of the new areas set to debut in Dragon Age: Inquisition. Their latest blog post offers a brief tour of the snowy cliffs of Emprise du Lion and the overgrown forests of The Emerald Graves—showing off some beautiful scenes of camps, wilderness and icy desolation. Also: a bloody great big dragon.
The first notes I jotted down as I played Bound by Flame were miserable: “What the hell is going on with the screen resolution? I wish my character would shut her dumb mouth. Oh cool, undead ice guys from the north. Never seen that in a popular fantasy novel or TV series ever.” The most positive thing I wrote was “I found leather under a rock.” Bound by Flame had to grow on me, and it did—but only just enough to keep me from tossing its Steam Trading Cards to the curb and changing the locks.
I do admire developers like Spiders and Cyanide for keeping the ambitious mid-budget RPG alive, even if their games don't always live up to their potential. Bound By Flame is Spiders' Dragon Age-ish fantasy RPG, and like most games on the precipice of launching, it's been given it's own launch trailer to celebrate the occasion. You'll find a new synonym for zombies - "Deadwalkers" - inside, along with the promise of sexytimes and lots of cutsceney battle footage.
I’m pretty excited for Hellraid for the same reason I’m excited for Dying Light. Techland’s mix of first-person melee combat and role-playing loot mongering in Dead Island was brilliant, and I’ll take more of it any way I can. While Dying Light seems more like a natural evolution of Dead Island, Hellraid puts that same kind of gameplay into fantasy setting. It's also getting some upgraded visuals, as Techland today annoucned it was moving the game to the same engine powering Dying Light.
Tamriel's ashy homeland of the Dark Elves is the source for many a Elder Scrolls hero's first memories—exploring ancient Dwemer ruins, sticking a spear into Dagoth Ur, or cursing the very words "cliff racer"—so it's small wonder a number of large-scale mods focus on overhauling the 2002 RPG. The massive Skywind effort is certainly exciting to look forward to, but some older projects are still steaming along quite nicely. Morrowind Rebirth has been around for a few years, and its latest update adds new areas to the game's already massive world.
From Software, the Japanese developer best known for the Dark Souls series—including the just-released Dark Souls 2—has been purchased by Japanese publisher Kadokawa Shoten, a company known for publishing manga such as Cowboy Bebop and Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Someone must have asciid for an expansive roguelikey JRPG rendered entirely in textart, as we've received one in the form of the delightful SanctuaryRPG. It's a streamlined and grind-free take on Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest and early Ultima and Things Like That, and if I were to hand out badges in this column it would win the coveted Best RPG Featuring Ascii Slimes award (sponsored by that Ghostbusters ectoplasm I used to love when I was a kid). Elsewhere this week: a serene, freeform farming lifesim appeared, along with two very different platformers at opposite ends of the minimalism/maximalism spectrum. Enjoy!
Divinity: Original Sin, the next chapter in the Divinity RPG series, will get a full release on June 20, developer Larian Studios announced today. Although Original Sin has been available through Steam Early Access since January, only the first 20 hours or so were accessible. With a release date now on the horizon, the studio has dropped a pair of new videos to mark the occasion.
I played The Fall on a tablet and thought it was pretty good. It did a solid job of translating Human Revolution to a mobile platform, at the expense of some complexity. But on PC it’s like watching a 240p YouTube video on an IMAX screen.
Its mobile roots are obvious, from the tiny environments, blurry textures and low-poly character models, to the on-screen prompts, which use the old touchscreen icons. It’s an unforgivably half-arsed port.
"Because of Dragon Age 2, Dragon Age: Inquisition is having to be a lot more ambitious," says executive producer Mark Darrah in our huge Dragon Age: Inquisition interview. Dragon Age 2's narrower scale and 10-year narrative arc proved controversial. Darrah says Bioware are keen "to address those concerns" with "tactical combat and a higher level of deliberate difficulty" as well as a more focused central narrative that's "much more in the vein of Dragon Age: Origins style storytelling."
As a game all about surviving in a hidden bloodsucker culture on the oblivious streets of Los Angeles, Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines fully deserves the embrace of undeath. It was the last effort from masterful RPG studio Troika Games, and its release in 2004 drew much ardor from fans yearning to join the World of Darkness canon—but it's also known as one of the glitchiest games of recent memory.
A troubled development path caused Bloodlines to launch in an unfinished state plagued with bugs, missing dialogue, and other Broken Things. But Bloodlines' heart has kept beating thanks to nearly a decade of fan-made patches—headquartered in the online coven Planet Vampire—fixing longstanding flaws, refreshing textures, restoring hidden content, and generally piecing back together Bloodlines' intended glory. Even better: the game is currently $5/£3 on Amazon.
Inside the social economy of The Elder Scrolls Online, almost everything is up for sale—even vampirism. But House Annunaki, an Ebonheart Pact vampire guild in TESO, wants to turn that economy on its head by offering the precious vampire bites for free beginning May 1, according to the most recent issue of developer Zenimax Online's Tamriel Chronicle.
Later this year, Bioware will release Dragon Age: Inquisition. That's pretty exciting. So exciting, that six months before release, EA are confident in people's willingness to pre-order the game. And if people will pre-order the regular edition of the game, maybe they'd instead prefer the "Digital Deluxe Edition"; the contents of which are now listed on Origin. If it sounds unlikely, maybe you're underestimating people's love for thrones made out of dragon skull.
What was looking to be a year packed full of epic RPGs has become a little more spacious thanks to The Witcher 3's delay. Fret not, though, fans of magic, monsters and mead, for Dragon Age: Inquisition is still on course to land in the back half of 2014. Bioware have now confirmed the game's release date, announcing their October 7th target alongside a new trailer for the RPG sequel.
Dragon Age: Inquisition interview - on fan feedback, romance, returning characters and the open world
The Dragon Age series has evolved in a tumultuous fashion since Origins. The switch from the world-threatening crisis of the first game to the personal stories of Dragon Age 2 proved too great a shift for some fans. Inquisition will again take the series to a grander stage. An open world with dynamic keep battles will bolster the central story, which sees inquisition—led by you—recruiting aid aid to postpone an imminent apocalypse.
How else will Inquisition differ from its predecessors? What have Bioware learned from fans of the series? How will they correct the awkward savegame bugs that could bring characters back to life, and how have they chosen your companions for the new adventure? Chris spoke to executive producer, Mark Darrah, to find out.
Perhaps it's just a side effect from the afterglow to watching this week's Game Of Thrones, but I can't seem to stop staring at the recently revealed box art for Dragon Age: Inquisition.