Daily updates on video games and popular culture, along with Australia’s grooviest gaming podcast.

Archive for February, 2014

Thief Review

Posted by Erin Marcon On Friday 28 February 2014Comments Off

Available on XBO, PS4, PC, 360 and PS3 l Published by Square Enix l Developed by Eidos Montreal l Classified MA15+ l Supports 1 player

REVIEW IN BRIEF > If a sprawling open world is a prerequisite for your enjoyment of Thief, you’re bound to be disappointed by this reboot. Thanks in part to its technical shortcomings, this latest iteration always feels claustrophobic, but this actually contributes to the game’s apocalyptic sense of oppression. In this wretched tale, atmosphere is key, and Thief certainly delivers on this front. Throw in silky smooth controls and solid gameplay scenarios and you end up with a worthy package. Read the rest of this entry »

Piranha talks Risen 3, carpentry

Posted by Erin Marcon On Thursday 27 February 2014Comments Off

Like a carpenter…

The Risen series is set to continue in 2014 with a new instalment from series creator Piranha Bytes. The action in Risen 3: Titan Lords takes place in a world deserted by its deities. As a young adventurer, you seem to have been deprived of something rather precious to you (your soul) and you’ll do whatever it takes to retrieve it.

Discussing the development of Piranha’s latest fantasy RPG, project lead Bjoem Pankratz fired off this unintentionally hilarious gem. “Like a carpenter with a hand-crafted piece of furniture, we put together the story, the characters and the landscape until it all fits and the player has the responsibility to discover things all around the place.”

Notwithstanding its relatively low profile, the Risen series has an interesting history in Australia. The first instalment was refused classification back in 2009, effectively banning it from sale in this country. This refusal predated the introduction of an R18+ rating in Australia, so it never really stood a chance. The second entry in the series, Risen 2: Dark Waters, was a little more fortunate, securing an M rating, but middling reviews.

Publisher Deep Silver is aiming to bring Risen 3: Titan Lords to market in August. Expect to see it on 360, PS3 and PC. If you’re holding off on a next gen upgrade, you probably feel pretty good about announcements like this.

Candy for everybody!

Posted by Karen Jacobson On Wednesday 26 February 2014Comments Off

Warning: disturbing imagery. Wait… too late!

In the most ridiculous trademark case since Walmart tried (and surprisingly failed) to trademark the smiley face, King, the developer of the world’s most annoying Facebook request, Candy Crush, has been attempting a similar nonsensical move.

The addictive puzzler has been hugely successful across casual platforms from iOS to Android to Facebook. Keen to prevent any opportunistic developers from piggy backing on their success, King made an application to trademark the word ‘candy’ when referring to games and merchandise.

As reported by Kotaku, King has since experienced a moment of clarity (and indeed sanity) and withdrawn its application. No doubt the organisers of the recently held Candy Jam are breathing a sigh of relief. Taking the King application very seriously, the goal of Candy Jam was to create as many games with the words ‘candy’ and ‘saga’ in them as possible.

Now logic has prevailed we can look forward to a flood of Candy named and themed games.

Duke Nukem headed for court?

Posted by Peter Nickless On Tuesday 25 February 2014Comments Off

Court officers have a hard time serving papers on Duke.

After inflicting the execrable Duke Nukem Forever on the gaming public and being thoroughly lambasted for its lack of care, Gearbox Software is taking aim at the previous rights holder 3D Realms for returning to a property that it allegedly no longer owns. As reported by Joystiq, Gearbox is also targeting 3D Realms’ new development partner Interceptor Entertainment.

Defying the laws of logic (and also the rights to the IP sale) 3D Realms has publicly posted details of a new Duke Nukem: Mass Destruction game on its website, even though it allegedly sold the rights to all future games to Gearbox. Gearbox quickly responded with a lawsuit targeted at 3D Realms and Interceptor Entertainment for “infringing use of the Duke Nukem trademarks and copyrights owned by Gearbox”.

Maybe 3D Realms needs to follow the satirical model of the Dumb Starbucks store and simply add the word ‘dumb’ to the title of the game in order to protect itself from future lawsuits. The studio just needs to make a game that is a parody of Duke Nukem himself in order for it to work.  Hang on, wait a minute…