PAX South is over for another year, and I think between this PAX and Prime I need to have zero games come out before 2018 so I can actually complete all the games that I have interest in playing. That will never happen, and no matter how many games I have stacked up with the plastic wrap on months or years after purchase or how little space remains on my harddrive more games will be acquired. Perhaps if I live long enough to see retirement I can clear my game backlog, but enough of my first world problems, here are some games of interest. Like all my other PAX articles, this is more or less a sampler platter of what is on the horizon or in some cases already out, and at least some of these will be addressed in greater depth at a later time.
Hard Reset Redux: This is an updated version of the 2012 FPS classic. Improved graphics and frame rate are a given, but the developers included other updates to give more reason for people who have completed it to revisit this game. These include a quicksave feature, new enemies, new enemy placement, a dash function, and a cyber-katana. While a melee weapon is not useful in all situations, it is quite fun for the ones that is appropriate. I was told owners of the original Hard Reset will be able to get this revamped version at a discount.
Zombie Night Terror: I believe I have stated this before, the gaming market is over saturated with zombie games but there is a shortage of games where you are the zombie. This game works to address that problem. A developer told me this is “Lemmings with zombies.” The quote sums it up succinctly, but leaving it at that is lazy journalism even by my standards. You start the game infecting people, turning them into zombies. They bite other people and that is how you amass your zombie horde. Zombies are dumb so you need to give them a hand by injecting them with mutagen, which includes but are not limited to zombie overlords, crawlers, jumpers, and big Schwarzeneggerian roided out beefcake zombies. This will feature 40 levels and 10 free DLC levels. There will also be a level editor that uses the same level building tool as the main game.
Crush Your Enemies: The fact that this game’s name is from a Conan the Barbarian quote and the levels are named after metal songs, such as The Duelist by Iron Maiden, are enough for me to sing its praises. To people who are not me that require a little more substance, this is an RTS where hordes of barbarians battle each other. Each battle lasts 3-15 minutes, and the AI does change so you cannot rely on developing one strategy to win every battle. There are different types of units such as melee warriors, archers, and shield bearers. This game does have a sense of humor, and instead of the standard fantasy monsters that are in every medieval game, this game features a giant cow that shoots toxic milk and a death snail. The death snail is a large snail that causes death. This is slated for a spring release.
Livelock: This is a top down twinstick shooter. I spent some time playing this with a friend on local co op and it was a blast (ba dum tiss–Editor). You can carry multiple guns at a time to swap out in the heat of battle. The level we played had the objective of taking out 11 scattered gun turrets in addition to a constant onslaught of a horde of enemies. Your adversaries in this game are weaker in the back, so a good multiplayer strategy is trying to sneak behind them to shoot them in the back while they are focused on the other player. Incidentally, Neverwinter’s Underdark expansion will be available 2/09/16.
Dungeon Quest: Here we have another mobile game that challenges my prejudice that mobile games are the modern equivalent of Tiger Electronics handheld games. This is a free to play dungeon crawler currently available on IOS and Android. It is a lootfest much like the Diablo series, though the visuals are not quite as bright and colorful as Diablo III (Get over it not being as dark as Diablo II–Editor). I had a lot of fun playing this on local co-op.
Rogue Stormers: On 3/24/16 the final version of this game will be available on Steam, ending its time in Early Access where it currently is available. This is a run and gun platformer with roguelike elements. There are different characters, each with unique weapons and play style. An advantage in co op mode is if one character dies, they will remain in the game and just be unable to attack provided another player stays alive. This makes progressing through the game easier as you are only given one life to live. My friend and I had fun with this one, I am looking forward to the final version being released.
Invisigun Heroes: This is the 2nd multiplayer competitive shooter I played this weekend where every player was invisible. The difference between this and Screen Cheat is this is a single screen where everyone moves on a grid like the old Bomberman games. Everytime a player fires their location is revealed for a split second. Surprisingly, the short matches in this game were actually enjoyable, though I am not sure how long the invisible gimmick will hold up after a couple rounds.
HAUNTED: Halloween ’85: Currently this old school throwback is in Steam Greenlight. This looks, plays, and sounds just like a 2D platformer out of the Paleozoic Era from the good old days of the NES. You can play this on Steam once it graduates from Greenlight status, but if you are impatient you can purchase this game as an NES cartridge if you have an NES console or one of those Retro Duo or RetroN consoles. As a fan of NES games this is one I am hoping becomes available on Steam more sooner than later.