When Insomniac Games first unveiled Overstrike at E3 2011, its CG trailer showed a lot of potential. The campy humor and exaggerated action seemed decidedly Insomniac-esque and certainly piqued my interest at the time. Over the course of production, its creators took the game in a slightly more mature direction — a decision which was met with some degree of backlash. The end result of this evolution in design, Fuse, is a highly-polished, if somewhat derivative, third-person shooter that takes itself more seriously than Overstrike probably ever did while still retaining some of the trademark charm and humor originally hinted at.
The first five months of the Playstation Vita’s lifecycle have been a bit rocky. While I’ve been thoroughly satisfied with mine, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the software lineup has been a little hit-or-miss. After a strong initial launch, the release list of Vita titles has been a bit spotty–Gravity Rush and this week’s Sound Shapes being a couple of notable standouts. A number of solid looking titles have been announced or at least hinted at, but few have been given concrete release dates for game-hungry Vita owners to look forward to. Thankfully, LittleBigPlanet PS Vita is now officially slated for a September 25th launch in the U.S. and if my limited time with it is any indication, it’s shaping up to be the next great flagship title for the Sony’s handheld.
Editor’s note: While Pure Chess is available for both PS3 and PS Vita, this review focuses on the Vita version.
I’m a big fan of Hustle Kings, specifically the asynchronous message play multiplayer found in the Vita version of the billiards game. When I heard that the same development house, VooFoo Studios, was working on a Chess Game with a similar mechanic, my interest was immediately piqued. While the chess pieces in Pure Chess are just as gorgeously rendered as the beautiful balls in Hustle Kings, the “play by mail” functionality just doesn’t quite deliver the same oomph.
The PlayStation Move controller has always held quite a bit of promise in my eyes. The combination of better-than-Wii Remote accuracy with high definition, more powerful hardware has teased me with thoughts of what could be, but the reality of what we’re given has almost always let me down. Though I’ve often appreciated the optional Move support bestowed upon many PS3 titles, I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to say that the existing crop of Move-specific games has been predominantly underwhelming. Sorcery breaks that pattern. Although it may not usher in a huge flock of new motion control supporters, Sorcery is easily the best PlayStation Move game to date.
From what I’ve gathered, Austin-based Lightbox Interactive had two headlining goals when setting out to create a follow up to Warhawk: to further evolve the already excellent multiplayer-focused groundwork they’d already laid and to also add in a single-player campaign, which Warhawk lacked, in order to further flesh out the new title. While Starhawk offers some of the most satisfying online play I’ve experienced in recent memory, the quality level takes a bit of a nosedive when it comes to the campaign.
StarDrone Extreme is a bit of an oddity. Hailing from Eastern European indie house Beatshapers, it’s pitched as a “high-speed action thriller with a mix of arcade action, pinball, breakout, physics and collect-the-objects”. That’s a pretty wordy bit of marketing, so let’s just classify it as a “flinging” game to keep things simple. StarDrone originally hit the Playstation 3 last year with Move support in tow with little fanfare to relatively mixed reception. Now, the slightly tweaked StarDrone Extreme has made its way to the Playstation Vita.
The awesome folks over at Ronimo Games were nice enough to send along a PSN code for Awesomenauts. Since I actually got the game for free via PlayStation Plus, I thought I’d pass it along to one of our lucky listeners or readers.
Just use the widget below to put yourself in the running for the game (or, if you’re a PlayStation Plus subscriber, just download the game for free and give it a whirl!). Keep your eyes on the blog in the coming days for my written review.
I couldn’t think of anything particularly relevant to discuss in today’s Weekend Hangover post, so I just randomly decided to honor Resident Evil’s infamous green herb and its mysterious healing properties. The kind botanical friend first appeared in the original Resident Evil and the series has never managed to shake it since. It’s made a token appearance in every creeper-filled Capcom joint ever since. Any dope will know that you’re bound to take some hits, so it’s critical to take breaks between shot-gunning sessions and apply the herb as needed. If you don’t keep an eye on your health, you could very easily end up cashed. Anyway, don’t forget to share VGH with your buds!
But enough about green herbs. What games are you playing this weekend? Here’s what we’ll be zoning out to:
Today is 4/20, so I thought it would be fitting to present you with a list of 4 games that can be had for under $20. This idea came to me naturually and I totally didn’t borrow it from anywhere else. I’ve intentionally stuck to disc-based console games that have dropped in price over time, as downloadable titles are typically less than $20 in the first place. All four of these are excellent games that I had a wonderful time with, each for different reasons, and they all offer a pretty decent chunk of content at a low price.
We here at VGH aren’t exactly known for our patience. The people behind indie darling Fez were kind enough to send over a code for the game, but Randy and I both had ants in our pants and had already gone ahead and bought the game. Our impatience is your gain! We’re giving away our copy of Fez to one of you lucky folks. Head to the giveaway widget below and get yourself entered to win! We’ll be announcing a winner Tuesday morning, so get to it!
Sony has just dropped a new trailer for Resistance: Burning Skies which shows off the game’s 8-player online multiplayer action. I’m personally looking forward to getting my hands on it, as I’m really interested to find out first-hand how a first-person shooter feels on the Vita. Find out for yourself on May 29th when the game launches.
Fez is finally out! For a game that’s been in development for around five years and has won a number of awards, it’s kind of a big deal that you can actually download it and play it today. It certainly doesn’t hurt that it appears to be getting really good reviews.
So what are you playing this weekend? Have you picked up Fez? Planning to play something else? Tell us!
PAX East kicks off today!!! …and we’re not there. It’s pretty darn exciting anyway though. Are you at PAX? What are you looking forward to seeing there? If not, what are you looking forward to reading/hearing about from the show? Borderlands 2 is sounding pretty fantastic to me so far (bonus points for the fact that Gearbox is located a mere hour from my house).
Drop us a comment and let us know what you’re looking forward to from PAX, what your game-playing plans for the weekend are, or just tell us anything else that’s on your mind!
Have you ever found yourself playing Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars and thinking, “this is fun, but what would really be great is if you took out all this soccer stuff and replaced it with guns and rockets”? No? Yeah, neither have I, but at first blush, that was the vibe I was getting from Wheels of Destruction: World Tour before actually getting my hands on it. Upon playing it, I found Wheels of Destruction felt a bit more like a vehicular game of Unreal Tournament accompanied by a control scheme I’d summarily label as “wonky”.
Ha, it’s funny because it’s true.
What are the VGH crew drinking, err… playing this weekend?
Did you hear? They added freaking jetbikes to the Starhawk beta this week! Pretty cool. For some reason, I went into it thinking they would fly, but no… they dont. They do jump though. That’s gotta be worth something, right?
Hmm… I wonder what the VGH crew are up to this weekend…
THQ was nice enough to send over three codes for the Xbox Live Arcade version of Nexuiz for us to give away to our wonderful listeners and readers. For those not familiar with it, Nexuiz is a fast-paced, online competitive first-person shooter from IllFonic. I had great time with it when I checked it out for review last month. It’s available on XBLA now and is heading to PC and PSN soon.
I love games, but my wife doesn’t.
Every now and then, I sit her down, stick a controller in her hand and ask her to play something, hoping that one of these days she’ll change her mind.
My Wife and I sit down for a few friendly rounds of fighting. The results are… interesting.
Only four. more. days. Are you ready for Mass Effect 3?
Are you scrambling to rush back through Mass Effect 2 one more time or are you going in fresh? Planning to pick up any of the countless items that come with DLC bundled in?
I hope you’re ready. If not for the game itself, then at least to hear Paul gush about it (or rail against it?!?) on a future episode.
What’s everybody up to this weekend?
Note (2/26/2013): In the wake of the dissolution of THQ, the multiplayer servers for the XBLA version of Nexuiz have been shut down. If the game sounds fun, there’s always still the PC version, which is still functional as of this update.
Nexuiz, the third title in Microsoft’s “House Party” 2012 promotion on Xbox Live Arcade, is an arena-based first-person shooter which initially began life over a decade ago as a freely available quake mod. This new commercially released iteration from Illfonic may be gussied up to match modern technical expectations, but the game’s lineage is immediately felt the moment you jump into a match.
Intense and fast-paced, Nexuiz’s design sensibilities are clearly rooted in a bygone era. One where there was no sprint button because your player character already moved quite swiftly in the first place and where the word “gib” was an everyday part of a gamer’s vernacular.