The Witcher 3 Now Available: Some of You Won’t Be Seen For Weeks


 

Or you’ll be seen in all your usual places but your minds will be elsewhere because you’ve been running around adventuring as Geralt in CD Projekt RED’s long-awaited open world masterpiece. If those glowing review scores are any indication, this one’s going to be keeping some folks busy for months between the main game and the upcoming DLC packs. I’d bet a nickel that more than a few people who’ve been holding out or saving up for something to play The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will indeed make the big plunge (and hopefully see that there are a load of other games out there worth a buy in the process). ames like this are what keep me playing after all this time. You can take all those not an actual sport “eSports” titles, MOBAs and about 80% of every mobile or “social” game and stick them in a slow boat to Mars. None of those will ever best any game with a good solid story and characters you feel are part of a living, breathing fantasy world. Someone give CD Projekt RED a medal for keeping the flame alive already.

12 Seconds of DOOM: More Than Enough to Wake the Dead


 

Yikes. As someone bored by the current state of the PFS genre, this SUPER teasy teaser for Bethesda’s upcoming DOOM reboot made something rattle inside me I haven’t felt in quite some time. Perhaps it was that blast of metal and the howling sound plus the way that creature was shaking as it lumbered forth, shoulder guns blazing away. Yeah, that was something I’d not want to see ambling my way if I were on my last box of shells and there were more waiting around a corner somewhere. Well, time to set my E3 sights on this one I guess. I’m NOT attending the show this year thanks to stuff happening at home (as in walls and ceiling needing to be replaced in a few rooms plus the ongoing roof repairs), but I’ll be keeping an eye on a bunch of titles like this because that’s the only thing that will keep me from going all Space Marine on those folks knocking stuff down just to put it all back together (and hopefully for some sort of good this time- the previous work has blown something terribly).

Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess : “It’s A Trap!” You’ll Fall For Over And Over

Deception IV_TNP

Okay, I’ll admit to being a bit behind in my beating quota. In other words, I still have yet to play Deception IV: Blood Ties on anything it’s been released on. As time, tide and games wait for no man, Tecmo Koei has made it known that there’s a follow-up coming in July for the PS3, PS4 and Vita called Deception IV: The Nightmare Princess. Fans of this long-running series which began on the original Playstation should be dancing around for joy while trying to avoid assorted traps and hazards in their own environments. For the uninitiated, here’s a live-action trailer with a tiny bit of the sinister yet intentionally silly gameplay at the end:


 

Now if only actual burglar alarms worked this efficiently. Although I’d bet the setup and resetting costs would be a wee bit costly.

Continue reading

PONCHO Hands-On: A Beautiful Trip, 3 Layers of Parallax at a Time

PONCHO Purpose Mad
 

I saw screens of PONCHO a while back and bookmarked the page, but my recent computer woes knocked the game off my radar until the magical unicorn named David Bruno hit me over the head with some more screens and a preview code. If you have a Steam account, a PS4, Vita or Wii U, love platformers and puzzle games of any type and have an appreciation for all things “retro”… well, you need this game, period.


 

PONCHO is an open world puzzle game from Delve Interactive that features a cute robot (who just so happens to be wearing a poncho) who sets out to find his creator. Robots require that sort of closure, you know. What makes the game unique is not just the lovely sprite graphics and eye-popping color work, but the three layers of parallax scrolling Poncho can move through as he explores. While some online wags have made Fez comparisons, the games only share mascot-ready main characters and the ability to travel through environments in abnormal ways.

Poncho13 (Custom) 

Granted, there have been a handful of games where hopping back and forth between planes was key to gameplay. Treasure’s Yū Yū Hakusho: Makyō Tōitsusen for the Sega Mega Drive and Guardian Heroes on the Saturn used multiple planes for their gameplay and Cobra team’s Bastard!! Ankoku No Hakai Shin for the Super Famicom featured characters that needed to be rotated from foreground to background as a major part of the gameplay. That said, those were all fighting game variants while PONCHO is focused on exploration and puzzles of assorted varieties.


 

As you can see in the videos above, the game looks phenomenal and the transitions between layers is flawless. Some quick hands-on time reveals it’s got the looks and play going for it and fans of old school/new school blends will be smiling for as long as they have their hands on a controller. There’s a slower, more languid pace to PONCHO that’s welcome in this twitch-heavy gaming age, but those timed sections will certainly keep you on your toes. Anyway, I’ll shut up for now other than to say that Rising Star Games has another winner on its hands and PONCHO will be one for the ages when it all comes together for its June release. Back with more in a bit – I have a little robot calling me to play with it. Er, find its creator I mean!

Monday Goes All Lost Weekend On Me

Ha. I was supposed to get stuff done today, but other than getting up too early to do laundry, today was a near total bust. Why? Well… my birthday present to myself came early and I was busy playing with myself.

Oh, wait… this is a family show. Oops. Hey, I got pictures as proof! Look:

Play-Asia Stuff 001 (Custom)
 

What? You were thinking something else? Anyway, Demon Gaze I’ll need to get used to because it’s both great (Wizardry-style gameplay) and pesky (I’m not at all fond of some of the character designs and somewhat icky fan service elements). On the other hand, Earth Defense Forces 2 Portable V2 is amazing on a few levels. Yes, developer Sandlot didn’t change the wacky animation from the original PlayStation 2 game and in fact, Pale Wing slides around and almost tips over like a Weeble even more when she’s not airborne. However, there’s a solid and lovely familiarity to the (smoother) visuals and gameplay that kept me busier than expected. Oops. Well, that Double Nyuutai Pack was a total steal thanks to an overstock, so I’m certainly pleased with my purchase and then some.

Play-Asia Stuff 004 (Custom)
 

I also got a Blu-Ray to review that’s more of a real “not for the kiddies” deal (it’s a pretty icky horror flick from Arrow Video), so I guess I’ll get to that shortly. Saving the earth from robots and too huge insects can be put on hold for the time being. Maybe.

The Witcher 3 “Precious Cargo” Gameplay: Geralt’s A Not So Cheap Detective


While I was going through computer hell, it seems that The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt went gold and is on the way to production for its upcoming release. Nice. Here’s some more fantastic gameplay footage courtesy of CD Projekt RED, who REALLY wants to sell about five or six bazillion copies of the game (or very close to it) this year. I think they’ll do this with ease, as it certainly looks to be well worth the wait through those assorted delays that set it back a bit.

Geralt may not be Sherlock Holmes or even Horatio Caine, but he sure knows his way around a crime scene and can internal monologue up a storm. Hey, everyone talks to themselves you know. Some of us tend to do it out louder than others. That and hell, you just don’t mess with a man who can swing a sword and/or blast you with magic like Geralt can. “Haw-haw, that crazy-lookin’ guy is in the woods talkin’ to himself!” *STAB! Slice!, ROAST! (sizzle!)* See what I mean? Anyway, May 19, 2015 is the big day for PC, PS4, and Xbox One owners. Expect “flu-like” symptoms and asked for days off in certain spots around the globe, guaranteed.

Golden Week Sales Mean You Save Gold On Some Excellent Game Deals

NISA Golden Week Sale 

Well, this is pretty cool beans. To celebrate Golden Week in Japan, A few game publishers have tossed up a bunch of great Japanese role playing and other Japan-inspired or developed games, movies and anime up on the PlayStation Network at decent to excellent discounts. Check out the full list here if you’re click happy and ready to spend some of that disposable income. If some you JRPG fans late to the party need a nudge into that dollar shaped hole, I’ll let you know that Monkey Paw Games has Class of Heroes 2 on sale for $8.50 (it’s almost a steal!).

PSN Golden Week Sale 

Anyway, go hop to looking at those links as the sale ends on May 4, 2015. Yeah, just in time for you to spend the rest of your money on assorted Star Wars merchandise.

Project CARS Full Rides List: Your Car Is Ready (Almost!)


 

As soon as I saw this list, I started rubbing my hands together a wee bit too much and eventually set fire to my laptop’s keyboard. Ouch. It’s a good thing I was drooling at the same time because that put the fire out. Memo to self: I need a new smoke alarm for the house. Well, better a new laptop needed than a new lap, as laps can’t be transplanted last I checked. Project CARS will be rolling into retail and digital in North America for PC on May 7, 2015 and for PS4/Xbox One on May 12. Steam OS and Wii U versions will arrive later this year.

Anyway, get ready to race soon in the following cars once the game is out: Continue reading

Overkill’s The Walking Dead Set To Scare Up Sales on PC, PS4, Xbox One

Overkill's The Walking DeadAfter a few not so stellar attempts by other studios to make a first-person shooter based on The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman and David Alpert at Skybound have decided to let one of the best multiplayer FPS teams in the industry have the keys to the car along with all the gas they can scrounge up. Currently in development by Overkill Studios, all we have to look at for now is this simple followed by Kirkman’s announcement and a nice little gift for Payday 2 fans worldwide.

As it’s far too early to say what the game will be about in terms of its plot. We do know it will at least take place in and around Washington DC and be released sometime in 2016 for the aforementioned consoles and PC. Once again it looks as if those holding on to those PS3 and Xbox 360’s for dear life will need to bump themselves up into “next gen” which in now “current gen” to a few million people around the globe. PC owners will of course be trumpeting their own victories on the frames per second and detail setting maxed out front, but that’s always another tale for another time. 505 Games just got another money making AAA title in their library worth checking out.

Konami Kills Silent Hills; P.T. Probably Gone For Good

P.T. RIPIf you own a PlayStation 4, love horror-related games and have yet to play P.T., get ready for a little shock. You only have a few hours before that title (which stands for Playable Teaser and was actually a concept demo for the Guillermo Del Toro/Hideo Kojima Silent Hills project that was to feature The Walking Dead star Norman Reedus as the lead) is probably gone forever.

Konami has canceled the project entirely and will be yanking the demo off the PlayStation Network on Wednesday the 29th. The company still plans to keep creating games in the long running Silent Hill series in the future, but the loss of this demo comes as yet another blow to fans of Mr. Kojima’s work. This latest business decision comes not too long after both Kojima and Kojima Studios’ name were removed from Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain after still unrevealed disagreements between the creator and company. Both his name and his studio’s name were also chopped from the P.T. demo site in Japan and it seems that once the free demo is gone, it’ll not even be available to download even if it’s been placed in one’s PS4 queue for play at some point in the future.

P.T. Title Screen 7780S (Custom) 

As a bit of a gaming historian and big (but sometimes easily rattled) horror fan, this irks me to no end as well as shows how lousy digital distribution really is in terms of preserving content. Pulling a game demo may not seem like a big deal to many of you and it’s not really a huge deal at the end of the day. That said, given that P.T. showed off more creativity and genuinely freaky scares than some completed games, not having the demo around to show off in the future doesn’t bode well for any other demo or full game deemed disposable by companies who want to erase the past. Foo. Hopefully Konami will reconsider and at some point make the demo available at some point down the road. However, given the company’s kicking Kojima to the curb so abruptly after decades of service (no matter the reason, it’s a shame how things seem to be ending), it’s a bad sign of things to come if other games deemed doomed get dropped on the chopping block.

Anyway, if indeed the demo does disappear forever, there’s always YouTube for watching videos of people playing it. Konami’s official P.T. clips on its Japanese channel seem to be already gone, which is annoying because there were some reaction videos featuring gamers and non-gamers that were flat out hilarious. Oh well. Life goes on… but with a little less great scary as hell stuff to share with like-minded folks.

What a shame.