Covert Ops is a rules-light game of espionage and intrigue that is a great choice for quality and value. In a day and age when basically everything has been released as a supplement, it packs a surprising amount of content, it includes not only a hundred-and-change page core rulebook but a similarly long GM’s guide, as well as a bulky portfolio of pre-made characters and a ton of additional goodies, such as printable initiative cards, to round out the deal. Continue reading “Thursday Review: Covert Ops Role Playing Game”
Be Awesome At Freelance Game Design is written by Creighton Broadhurst at Raging Swan Press. It’s an interesting look at the art of making content for games. However, one thing to note is that it touches most heavily on three independent aspects: freelancing, the games industry, and then writing. If you’re thinking about writing your own stuff you’re not really a freelancer, but it’s also important to note that the guide is more for adventure, campaign, and setting writing than for actual game design, which, to be fair, is a topic which is colossal in scope.
Ring Runner (sometimes stylized RingRunner) is an indie 2D space combat game focusing on an epic space adventure imbued with quirky humor. It’s actually a refreshing breath of fresh air in a genre that hasn’t seen many good releases recently, and while it’s not the size and scale of a triple-A title, it has a lot of bang for its buck and it’s got some nice features and charm that hasn’t been seen in the market recently.
Risk of Rain is one of the few modern “roguelike” games that fall outside the genre that I accept as having a firm foundation in traditional roguelikes, perhaps more faithful than other games. I could get into the Berlin Interpretation and look further, but the truth of the matter is that Risk of Rain follows the conventions well; it’s a difficult but rewarding game that pushes the player’s skills to the limit while testing them in various ways. Don’t let its hardcore nature push you away, though, it’s a game that’s rewarding in many ways. Continue reading “Thursday Review: Risk of Rain”
Prowlers and Paragons is a tabletop game that attempts to make everyone think it’s a D&D retro clone but is actually a superhero game with an original, if not terribly innovative, system that is more than worthy of standing on its own merits. As a superhero game, it does a good job of providing a framework for highly-narrative adventures and, while it may not have the boon of a major comics publisher’s licensing deal it is, in my opinion, still as good as any of the alternatives, if not better in certain ways.
So I just got back from the theater and watching Ender’s Game. I should likely preface this by stating that my review is perhaps a little informed by the fact that I didn’t really enjoy the book all that much; it had some good ideas and concepts, but my memory grew less fond of it as I’d sort of mulled it over and thought about it again and felt like it just felt less consistent and well-written. The movie, however, was somewhat different than I had expected.
Welcome to the second week of my Dungeon Siege 2 review; we’ll pick up where I left off last week and begin to look more at the things that Dungeon Siege 2 did that were really interesting and saw a lot of echoes in later games as well as things that would be cool if more people actually took up.
I’m doing something a little unusual this week because I don’t really have time, but I’m going to go back and review a game that’s pretty old that I just finally discovered, and actually do a case study on it as much as write a review of it. Normally I’d make this a game design thing, but that’s not going to happen right now.
I went into Dishonored with high expectations, and found them matched. However, I discovered quickly that while I truly enjoyed the game, it ran into some pretty major issues before too long in. Quite frankly, when I made it through the first three levels, I was thinking “This game reminds me a lot of Deus Ex, in a good way.” and by the time I got to the last my thoughts had been shifted to “Well, some of these textures do look like they’re from 2000″. Continue reading “Thursday Review: Dishonored”
Tomb Raider is always one of those franchises I’ve avoided because of its perception; Lara Croft prior to recent developments had always been a video game sex symbol, but was handled in a way that I found somewhat offensive. She’d become an object of a brand rather than a living breathing character, and while she certainly wasn’t the worst example of how women are treated in video games, she wasn’t a character so much as an image. However, having heard good things about Lara’s new direction in character development, and the general gameplay of the series reboot, I picked it up and gave it a shot. Continue reading “Thursday Review: Tomb Raider (2013)”