While it didn't quite come out of nowhere, nobody could have predicted just how huge Undertale would become this year. At the time of writing, 19,394 positive reviews to 321. Half a million sales, by SteamSpy estimation. Beating Ocarina of Time in GameFAQs' Best Games Ever list. Making people give a crap about GameFAQs' Best Games Ever list. It's quite the thing.Few games have ever touched so many people so deeply, or been so misunderstood by their critics. I'm certainly not saying that I think Undertale is the greatest game ever, since I think we all know that prize goes to 1984 classic "Bouncing Babies". It's not, however, just a collection of in-jokes and drippy warm goo glued onto the back of Earthbound nostalgia, as you'd think from insult names like 'memetale'. It's something harder to process - an incredibly smart, well-written and insightful RPG that's comfortable enough to do the gaming equivalent of showing up in a tracksuit and sneakers. You look at any part of it and yes, … [Read more...] about Uncovering the heart of Undertale
It sounds like Age of Empires 4 has been in development at Relic for quite a while, and I'm keen to see how the Company of Heroes and Dawn of War studio adapts a beloved classic for the modern age. We have finally seen a little bit of Age of Empires 4, and it looks lovely. Only a brief video was shown at this week's X019 event, but there's plenty to speculate on, so let's do just that.I don't remember glowing magic birds being part of Age of Empires, but maybe my memory is rusty. This might just be a cool visual device for the trailer, but to me it looks like a scouting device that peels back the fog of war—as represented by contoured hills and tree outlines.Look! There's a classic Age of Empires guard tower. At the top we can see a wooden wall, which is attached to the larger stone-walled castle beyond. The unaesthetic angle of the wall, jutting awkwardly from the castle to the river, suggests to me that the walls are player-placed constructs, which bodes well for base-building … [Read more...] about Age of Empires 4 trailer breakdown: fortresses, priests, and the eternal war between red and blue
The Walking Dead season 10 continues to march to the rhythm of its own drum with episode 5, "What It Always Is", eschewing any sense of showmanship for something more akin to a longstanding soap opera – one that’s gradually moving the pieces in place for a final standoff against The Whisperers. The leisurely pace of recent episodes was agonising, but a stronger focus and more interesting scenarios make "What It Always Is" a far more tolerable viewing experience, albeit one that isn't without its hiccups.Episode 5 follows three roughly synchronous plotlines, and, though none of them overlap, the main focus is on Negan, who has mysteriously escaped from Alexandria. We still don't know how he broke out, but the antagonist-turned-antihero finds himself accompanied by an avid fan in the form of Brandon, whose parents were part of The Saviours back during the Rick Grimes era of season 8.Brandon, however, is awkwardly and inadequately written into existence, thrown onto the screen … [Read more...] about The Walking Dead season 10 episode 5 review: “We’ve been ignoring the real, less visible threats all along”
Alien 3 is now 20 years old. Two decades.If, like me, you’re of mid-’80s vintage, it probably doesn’t feel ‘old’ at all.Scott and Cameron’s efforts are firmly in a pre-’90s, pre-memory past, but I do remember the seven-year-old me being far too terrified by Alien 3 ’s poster to even want to see it.I definitely remember the awesome tie-in SNES game. And I even remember the fuss about how terrible the thing was, the thermonuclear intensity of which was powerful enough to distract me from watching Wacaday , or whatever else I was doing back then.But what was all the fuss about?Looked at today, there’s not much wrong with Alien 3 , and there’s a huge amount that’s right about it.In fact, it’s a very solid film indeed – a weird kind of modern classic – and it established the themes that would underpin David Fincher’s career so far.First things first – it’s important to realise what … [Read more...] about Is It Just Me… Or Is Alien 3 Really A Misunderstood Masterpiece?
The Star Trek Picard series trailer is here! Thanks to the franchise's big panel as part of the San Diego Comic Con 2019 schedule on Saturday, we've got a first look at the best Star Trek captain's return (don't @ me) and realease window for the Picard TV show.Returning to the captain's chair for the first time in 17 years, Patrick Stewart will once again play Jean-Luc Picard. However, he's a very different man than the one was saw in The Next Generation. It's time to go where to go where no fan has gone before: watch the Star Trek Picard trailer below.The trailer opens with an unnamed woman asking Picard if he's "ever been a stranger to [himself]." His response? "Many, many times." We then get a shot of a dismembered body of Data. This is going to some seriously dark places.Much of the trailer revolves around a woman in danger who's approaching Picard looking for refuge and help. The good captain, though, seems to know who she is, and believes she's in "serious danger."Some familiar … [Read more...] about Star Trek: Picard trailer debuts at SDCC 2019, revealing the return of Seven of Nine, Data and the Borg