Big week for XBLIG as a service and its almuni


It’s been a great week for both XBLIG and a number of its alumni. Escape Goat, the well received puzzle Read more

Wizorb Developers Mixing Crafting and Contra in Mercenary Kings


Tribute Games, the designers of the most excellent Wizorb, are now paying tribute to the run-and-gun shooter. Mercenary Kings Read more

EvilQuest 2 in development, set to conquer Dream.Build.Play


Chaosoft Games made a name for themselves with EvilQuest, an XBLIG action-RPG in the vein of the NES classic Read more

Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion Now Flying into the Depths of Space


Man has entered the endless depths of space again, courtesy of Stardock, who is most commonly known for Read more

Reviews

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Q.U.B.E. Review: Don’t Be A Square

Posted on by Taylor Bliss in PC, PC Reviews, Reviews | 1 Comment

Games like Portal distort our perceptions of other games in the same genre. They are made to a caliber above not only what is expected, but also what was imagined. This can have a terrible effect on other titles that would otherwise stand out on their own merits and be praised for originality and innovation. Q.U.B.E. is one such game. Ranging from its aesthetics to the level design, you can feel the influences that Portal had over it. But, if you can manage to peel yourself away from those associations, you’ll find a gem of a game.

The beginning moments of the game are rough: no explanation is given as to the situation you are in, and as you progress, none is given to you as to how to use new tools as they are provided. The gameplay breaks down to using a glove to control different colored… let’s call them cubes. Depending on the color, right and left clicking on them produces different effects. From there, puzzles are born and run a gambit of just platforming – made capable by maneuvering the cubes – to light mirror puzzles with a bit of color courtesy of the cubes thrown in for a bit of added complexity.

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Shank 2 Review: Shank Smash

Posted on by Erron Kelly in PC Reviews, PSN Reviews, Reviews, XBLA Reviews | Leave a comment

It’s difficult to be sure of what the most interesting aspect of Shank 2 is. It could be the unapologetic ultraviolent nature of the title: a side-scrolling beat-em-up designed around utilizing the customizable load-out of light, heavy, and ranged weapons to brutally massacre everything on screen while simultaneously timing the use of the new evade roll to dodge almost every attack the various sizes of enemies have at their disposal.

It could be the art style, both in the actual game and the cutscenes that serve to push the story forward and reinforce the ultraviolent nature that has become a hallmark of the series, punctuated every time an enemy explodes in a shower of blood and viscera.

It could even be the actual combat, which, while not incredibly different from what was present in the previous game, is still a step forward. Juggling enemies is solid, and the new dodge roll that has replaced the old block makes sure the action never hits an unfortunate standstill. Read more

Unstoppable Gorg Review: Take Me To Your Towers

Posted on by Erron Kelly in PC, PC Reviews, Reviews | Leave a comment

There’s something to be said for games that incorporate FMV scenes. A game that knows how to enhance the experience as a whole with FMV is usually a game that could still be considered a good game without the additional gimmick. In recent years a number of small studios seem to have honed in on this fact, and as a result we, the consumers, have been treated to a number of excellent games.

Twisted Pixel, for example, has a few titles that used it well until they crossed the line with The Gunstringer. While it could be argued that the Kinect peripheral is to blame for some of the underwhelming feeling associated with The Gunstringer, it can’t change the fact that it was the first game Twisted Pixel released where their use of FMV was meant to carry the entire package, and that’s the aforementioned line: one that should never be crossed.

But Futuremark Games Studio’s Unstoppable Gorg manages to offer a solid experience even if you ignore the FMV scenes, and an incredible one if you immerse yourself in them. The videos themselves eschew the normal CGI techniques, turning instead to actual objects and costumed people. It’s this loving attention to detail that really cements the right way to incorporate FMV into a game.
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Little Racers STREET Review: Size Does Not Matter

Posted on by Dave Voyles in Reviews, XBLIG Reviews | 2 Comments

EDIT: Developer Milkstone Studios informs us that an update is coming next week, which will include multiplayer mode

The XBLIG Marketplace is notorious for its often campy FMV games (sadly, no Night Trap port yet), Avatar-laden gimmick titles, and games that bear strikingly low production values. On occasion, a gem will find its way between the otherwise generic rocks of games and spark a glimmer of hope into XBLIG again. One such title is Little Racers STREET, the 15th title from Milkstone Studios, who have made a name for themselves for their high production values and strikingly beautiful games. I’ll have you know that they continue this tradition with their latest offering.

Rarely do I pick up an Xbox indie game and really hunger to return to it later, but LRS had me coming back for more. The gameplay was addictive and offered just enough incentive after each race to keep that carrot dangling in front of me, enticing me to continue.
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Block Zombies! Review: Night of the Living Legos

Posted on by Mike Wall in Reviews, xblig, XBLIG Reviews | 2 Comments

Thanks, I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MBIES 1N IT!!!1. Thanks for your addictive gameplay. Thanks for your stupid, catchy song. Thanks for creating a template that countless mindless, shambling hordes of games have imitated, and shamelessly refused to improve upon. The twin-stick shooter may be the most prolific genre represented in Xbox Live Indie Games, but most are redundant experiences that aren’t even worth Microsoft’s server space. But every so often a game like Block Zombies! comes around, shuffles the pieces up just enough, and mixes in a few new wrinkles to come out with something that feels fresh and fun.

Yes, Block Zombies! is another zombie twin-stick shooter, and yes it apes the voxel style that Minecraft returned to the limelight, but you know what? It totally works. The game’s carefree visual style and upbeat tempo makes Block Zombies! an absolute delight to play. It’s like you’re a  kid wandering through a Lego playground that just so happens to be infested with cubical zombies who explode into tiny pieces when killed.

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EvilQuest Review: B-b-b-b-b Bad to the Bone

Posted on by Mike Wall in Reviews, XBLIG Reviews | Leave a comment

He-Man may have routinely embarrassed his skeletal counterpart on TV, but in my house, the muscly Master of the Universe was more likely to find himself colliding against the neighbor’s brick wall. Perhaps I took pity on incompetent villains who always managed to shoot themselves in the feet at the last minute, or maybe I just thought they looked cooler, but I found myself cheering for the bad guys like they were some kind of slightly maniacal version of Rudy.

It’s kind of hard to root for the bad guys in games unless you’re a fan of the ‘Game Over’ screen, but EvilQuest is the rare game that puts you squarely in the shoes of a detestable and indefensible deviant. It doesn’t merely present the option of being a bastard, it outright demands it, which is a pretty refreshing approach for a game. Unfortunately, like those incompetent 80s cartoon villains, EvilQuest finds a few ways to sabotage itself and derail the fun, but it’s still one of the more impressive indies we’ve seen in a while.
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Let’s Get Fiscal Review

Posted on by Mike Wall in Reviews, xblig, XBLIG Reviews | Leave a comment

Like any child of the 80s, I have a soft spot in my heart for brawlers that can only be filled with a punch to the face of a velociraptor. I’ve cleared the raging streets, finished the fight, and cleared out the sewers so many times that the city gave me my own waste removal truck. I also happen to have a ridiculous soft spot for Get Rich or Die Gaming, an outrageous adventure game with horrid voice acting, sleazy sex appeal, and tons of kitsch. So, naturally I was a bit pimped pumped when I heard that Baller Industries’ follow-up to Get Rich would be a brawler. So how did I feel after I got my hands on this bizarre monstrosity?

The story, characters, cut scenes, and dialogue are exactly what I would expect from Baller Industries. Characters act in extreme fashions, experience 180-degree mood swings for no apparent reason, and enjoy shouting profanity. It’s absolutely insane, but in all the best ways like the He-Man Christmas Special. The plot follows a main character who has been sober for 10 years, but somehow keeps finding new ways to get stoned, drunk, or otherwise intoxicated during what has to be the worst day ever experienced by an auditor. I can kind of see why he’d want to stay clean, because apparently the slightest narcotic in his system causes him to flip out and kick the tar out of everyone like Scrappy Doo on speed.

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To The Moon Video Review

Posted on by Daniel Campbell in PC, PC Reviews, Reviews | 3 Comments

To The Moon is an independent title that has been getting a lot of mainstream attention, but does it deserve it? Does the game really impress enough to warrant a top 10 entry? Or is this game simply a pretentious hipster’s dream that has caused widespread lunacy? Get it?! Lunacy!?… To the MOON =Lunar? HA HA HA H! …………fine! Just watch the damn video.

To The Moon was provided for review by Freebird Games. You can purchase it on their website for $11.95.

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