GDC’s opening day saw a session with publisher Paradox Interactive and developer Pieces Interactive, the duo responsible for bringing Magicka 2 to the world. Magicka’s unique “competitive co-op” charm netted the first game a staggering 3 million units shipped, giving way to the forthcoming PvP “Wizard Wars” title and co-operative sequel, Magicka 2.

It's a word.

It's been a while since we've talked about Magicka -- one of the most chaotic, purely entertaining games I've ever reviewed -- and now's the time to talk about its successor. Magicka: Wizard Wars is due out for release shortly, as published by Paradox, and still focuses heavily on combinatory spell-slinging combat with heavy collateral, friend-killing damage. That's the fun part.

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After the profound success of indie studio Beta Dwarf's recently-launched co-operative arena combat game, FORCED, we figured we'd hand out a couple keys to prove why we thought it was so good. At its peak, the game hit #2 top selling on Steam, landing just below the new Batman game.

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The short of it is this: We teamed up with Beta Dwarf to give away five Steam codes for FORCED, which is built for four-player co-op arena combat (think Gauntlet). If you're not yet familiar with the game, check out our Forced game review & gameplay video:

Gauntlet -- one of the most successful arcade games of the 80s -- stood as the gaming world's best guess at what a tactical multiplayer dungeon-crawler would look like. It was one of the first, and since its release, we've seen countless attempts to refresh an otherwise classic arcade hack-n-slash series.

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FORCED is a modernization of that genre, taking traditional hack-n-slash elements and fusing them with teamwork-oriented gameplay mechanics and puzzles. I first previewed FORCED over here, highlighting its playstyle and Kickstarter campaign and, one year later, they're finally launching.

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