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



Robot values toxic players… or does it? (probably not)

Posted by Erin Marcon On Monday 30 June 2014No Comments

Dude… it’s just a game.

The studio responsible for the forthcoming Orcs Must Die: Unchained has clarified the remarks of one of its employees.

In a recent interview with Polygon, Robot Entertainment designer Jerome K. Jones suggested that players perceived as overly aggressive are “not going to go away” and “honestly I don’t think you want them to.” According to Jones, these players are actually “driving the game” and “giving it longevity”. Jones acknowledged that studios do need to “deal with” such players “in whatever manner seems to work the best.”

Shortly after the publication of the interview, Robot Entertainment issued a statement implying that Jones had been (you guessed it) taken out of context. “In the full interview, we acknowledged that toxic players are an unfortunate facet of multiplayer gaming. We made clear that we want to hear from all players no matter how passionate they may be. Passionate but not toxic. We have an active community management team in place that will address toxic players quickly and decisively.”

Currently in beta, Orcs Must Die: Unchained adds MOBA elements to the franchise’s traditional blend of third person action and tower defence.



Solo Titanfall campaign not on the cards

Posted by Erin Marcon On Sunday 29 June 2014No Comments

“Let me tell you a story…”

Only the most avid of Titanfall enthusiasts would argue that the game’s campaign mode was anything more than an afterthought. The story was relegated to melodramatic audio snatches layered over multiplayer sessions featuring the same maps and modes found elsewhere in the game. No, this was a multiplayer focused experience through and through.

Would developer Respawn Entertainment consider crafting a genuine single player mode for potential future instalments in the series? In a recent interview with CVG, key figures at Respawn Entertainment poured cold water on that very notion. According to studio cofounder Vince Zampella, there is “nothing wrong with a single-player experience”, but “doing one with this feels almost like taking a step backwards.”

It seems that Respawn will continue to look for ways to weave narrative content into multiplayer-centric action. “I think we want to hit whatever part of the brain it is that triggers that feeling of a single-player campaign,” Zampella said.


The Black List 251

Posted by Black Panel Staff On Saturday 28 June 2014No Comments


Welcome to The Black List, your one stop shop for the stories published on the site this week.

SUNDAY PREVIEW Destiny > In this writer’s humble opinion, Destiny has been going about its hype in all the right ways. I recently lamented the fact that Watch Dogs became a victim of its own marketing campaign, and I think Ubisoft could learn a lesson from Bungie in how to get a hype train on the right track, so to speak. READ MORE

MONDAY REVIEW Mario Kart 8 > As long as you’re not looking for meaningful innovation, Nintendo’s latest mascot racer provides a great multiplayer experience, both online and off. The overall package is undermined by a couple of key issues. The lack of dedicated Battle Mode arenas is very disappointing. Worse yet, the Wii U Gamepad simply isn’t a good fit for the game, so you’ll probably have to invest in a full complement of Wii U Pro Controllers in order to get the most out of Mario Kart 8. READ MORE

TUESDAY REVIEW Murdered: Soul Suspect > Murdered: Soul Suspect claims to be an “action-adventure stealth game”, yet fails to satisfactorily live up to any of these descriptors. With a confused mishmash of gameplay mechanics, lacklustre story and almost endearingly frustrating protagonist, it is best enjoyed in the company of others, where you can take turns riffing on everything from the protagonist’s fedora to his inept detective work. READ MORE

WEDNESDAY JUST ANNOUNCED The Settlers: Kingdoms of Anteria > Even though the advertising material said “Settlers” and the preview clip was labelled “Settlers”, I didn’t recognise the Blue Byte game until the golden title “The Settlers: Kingdoms of Anteria” was splashed on the screen, 55 seconds into a 1:04 second video. I think I can believe Christopher Schmitz, Director of Product Development, when he says it will be “… the most innovative Settlers’ game we have ever created.” READ MORE

THURSDAY JUST ANNOUNCED Vane > A new studio has been founded by five game artists under the name Friend & Foe. These talented chaps have a resume that includes the likes of The Last Guardian, Killzone and Battlefield 3, so it is safe to say they know something about gorgeous looking games. But does this talent for stunning scenery and colourful characters translate into a great game? Well, we are about to find out with the announcement of their first title, simply called Vane. READ MORE

FRIDAY REVIEW Transistor > Bastion was a wonderful debut from Supergiant Games, and could be difficult to live up to, but with Transistor they’ve put in a solid attempt. Moody sound and visuals draw you into its rich dystopian world. The plot’s intriguing and doesn’t insult your intelligence, and the combat is clever and interesting, even if it doesn’t always flow smoothly. READ MORE


Transistor Review

Posted by Cha Holland On Friday 27 June 2014No Comments

Available on PS4 and PC l Published and developed by Supergiant Games l Classified PG l Supports 1 player

REVIEW IN BRIEF > Bastion was a wonderful debut from Supergiant Games, and could be difficult to live up to, but with Transistor they’ve put in a solid attempt. Moody sound and visuals draw you into its rich dystopian world. The plot’s intriguing and doesn’t insult your intelligence, and the combat is clever and interesting, even if it doesn’t always flow smoothly. Read the rest of this entry »