Twitch shooters have been a long-time staple in the somewhat volatile PC gaming market. Since its early days in the Quake and Unreal series, the clutch genre rooted itself with its fast-paced, drop-in/drop-out, competitive and entirely skill-based gameplay; without weapon balance to fall back on, games like Shootmania force players to be committed to their plan-of-attack and quick on the keys. It all comes down to the ability to dodge and return volleys quickly, often becoming a battle of reflexes before high-level strategy ever enters the field.
Shootmania continues the twitch shooter legacy, but uses a few interesting twists to further encourage skill-based play and strategy that's appealing to both the competitive and casual gamers. As I explain in my Shootmania: Storm video review and gameplay analysis, the game's focus on player dexterity by entirely eliminating weapon choice is what really sets it apart.
Warlock - Master of the Arcane is an intriguing amalgamation of Disciples, Magic: The Gathering (I'm going somewhere with this), Heroes, and the Civilization series; the game combines powerful, player-cast sorcery with standard turn-based global domination, adding a bit of unique strategy to the mix in a number of ways (including multiple worlds per game, different unit races, and special upgrades - all discussed below).
Ah, fresh meat. No, wait...
When Blizzard held the 2008 fan convention in Paris, I stood up early each day to gorge myself on the daily-shifting artwork that heralded some grand revelation or announcement that was soon-to-come. I frothed over these teasers, engaging in active study – even going so far as to maintain active threads that served as a condensed source of speculation, debates, and upvoted opinions by prominent members of the relevant online gaming communities. StarCraft 2 was at that point already a year in the (official) making, so what else could be there? World of Warcraft is always in constant development, so that seemed unlikely.
After looking at the gorgeous main menu screen, you may want to defend Ardania more than you do your own country.
We've all played a tower defence game at some time or another, they're pretty much everywhere these days, you almost can't turn a corner within the video game world without seeing another one coming out. Just turn on the iOS App Store, or Steam, and you'll see a couple of them just in the top sellers list (like Galactic Alliance). I'm not saying that's a bad thing, not by a long shot, but it's about time that someone put out a decent tower defence game instead of just redoing the same concepts over and over again. Perhaps that's where Most Wanted Entertainment come in?
Defenders of Ardania is a standalone sequel to the popular real-time strategy game Majesty 2: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim, but this time around, the company has gone in a different direction: moving away from the intricacies of the RTS game and leaning towards the more simplistic realm of the tower defence game. Just because it's "more simplistic" doesn't mean it's any easier, though. There are still RTS elements in there, they're just easier to get your head around.
During the 90s, point-and-click games exploded onto the gaming scene as a new way to experience a slowly-evolving, interactive story. Yesterday is a game that uses this style of play and brings it into the modern day; its point-and-click, story-driven mystery begs critical thinking for every situation presented - in terms of our Gaming Personalities article, the Thinker and Adventurer will feel the most direct connection with Yesterday.
Will this dark, thrilling, adventure/investigation game stump you in ways you didn’t even think possible as you approach a slowly climaxing story? Or will you feel like you’re playing a puzzle game with tacked-on drama?
Oil Rush is developed by Unigine Corp. and is self-described as "a real-time naval strategy game based on group control that combines strategic challenge of classic RTS with sheer fun of Tower Defense, and features state-of-an-art visuals." What a mouthful. You may have heard of their Heaven benchmark utility, which is fairly well-known in the benchmarking realm and has outstanding visuals.
The game takes place in a flooded world -- everyone lives on boats and the only currency, aside from bullets, is oil. The story goes that you are a unified group of people trying to fend off and destroy oil-rig-pilfering pirates. Battles take place on, you guessed it, a giant ocean that is spotted with oil rigs and unit-producing structures.
Let's delve into the specifics.
It's been a very long time since I could say this, but there is FINALLY another good Sonic game out. SEGA has been pushing 3D crap with Sonic out for years, instead of staying true to the roots of the series and keeping him in a 2D platform setting that makes sense to the playstyle.
Sonic CD brings back the original game in all of its 2D glory, and I must say the few visual enhancements that were made really helped to set the game apart. Your best moments will feature a “future” sign post flipped instead of “past” (much like the old flags that you had to hit to get the secret stages), reverting the visuals from the old style to an updated, futuristic look. Everything looks shiny and new -- even Sonic gets a bit gussied up for the occasion.
Man, do I ever remember the days I spent in front of my Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis playing games like Earthworm Jim, Aladdin, and Zelda: A Link to the Past. The games were complex, the stories riveting (at least, to an 8 year old with a small attention span), and the music, well, let's just not talk about game music from that era. Guardian Heroes, developed by Treasure, was one of those classic titles that no one really thought would get a makeover. Well, it did, and one that truly improved upon an already-great game. This 2D hack-and-slash side-scroller provided a unique storyline full of choices and consequences.
You spin me right round baby, right round, like a record baby, right round, round, round...
How many times have you wondered how much more fun something would be if a hell of a lot more spinning was involved? Well, like most people, the answer is probably not that many times, but that doesn't mean that Dancing Dots doesn't want you to think about that kind of stuff: cue Rotastic, a charming, colourful, and slightly mad puzzle game where the main objective is to grab onto little pegs with your rope, spin around in circles and attempt to collect as many gems and other objects as you can along the way. The more gems you manage to collect, the higher your score is going to be, the higher score you manage to get, the bigger and better helmet you'll attain when the level finishes. We all know what it means if you've got the biggest helmet...
“So I have to go and do some 'Renegade Ops' 'Just Cause' you told me to ?!?” - Bwahahahaha!! I crack myself up!
When you hear the title Renegade Ops you don't really know what you're letting yourself in for, you'll probably assume that you're going to be playing some kind of military-based game that focuses on the concept of revenge more than anything else, and you wouldn't be too far off. What you won't be expecting from a title like that is one of the best twin stick shooters on the market today; and that's exactly what Renegade Ops is.
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