Silver Dollar Games is taking a break from trying to figure out who fornicated with whom and wants you to start smashing faces with One Finger Death Punch. The reflex-based kung fu game has your stick -figure hero dishing out the pain with an impressive array of moves that are pulled off with just one or two buttons, depending on the difficulty level.
Why just a stick figure? Developer Jon Flook said “We don’t have the skills to do the animations ourselves and can’t afford an animator. To overcome this obstacle we decided to use a stickman style of animation. This allowed us to create many frames of animations ourselves without the need of an animator, simply because it’s affordable. It’s not as cool as having custom drawn animations with a unique artistic style but we do the best we can with the resources available.”
Flook said the game is “at least two months from completion,” but that they are looking to add in customizable special attacks and other features before the game is released. Anything you’d like to see added? Drop a comment on the Youtube trailer page.
With his adorable peanut-shaped body and wacky tube-man appendages, it’s easy to imagine a plushy of Warp’s alien protagonist sitting atop your desk at work or on a small child’s bookshelf. The only question is whether you’d go for the clean plushy or the one that is drenched in the dried blood of whomever recently got in its way. Just like the movies constantly remind us, aliens are deadly, so it’s best not to provoke them by strapping them to operating slabs and performing experiments on them. Oops. Silly humans.
Warp flips the typical alien story around and has you playing as an alien who must escape from an underwater research facility. That’s easier said than done because the station is the size of the Mall of America and employs more generic henchmen than Cobra. It rests on a lot of the clichés of the stealth genre such as guards that walk in predictable patterns and turrets with laser siting. You do have a bit of help thanks to a fellow imprisoned alien who is psychically linked to you and an increasing set of powers that allow you to work through the game’s increasingly complex puzzles. Although the initial premise of hopping through walls and into objects is novel, developer Trapdoor doesn’t rest on this one trick and continually introduces new abilities and puzzles that prevent Warp from stagnating. Read more
Fortune Summoners is one of those games that may conjure up some doubt at first glance. There are seemingly dozens of side-scrolling anime style games that ultimately disappoint in their gameplay, presentation, design…or sometimes just plain suck all around. Is Fortune Summoners another game to add to that pile, or is this a downloadable indie game truly worthy of your time and money? Guess you’ll just have to watch the video review and see.
Fortune Summoners was provided for review by Carpe Fulgar. You can purchase it for $19.99 on Steam.
One of the things that makes reviewing indie games so much fun, particularly Xbox Live Indie Games, is that every day you can play a game that is completely unknown and be taken aback and how marvelous it is. We’ve gotten to a point with mainstream games and media where you can find out so much information about a game that you know exactly what it is 90% of the time before you even pick up the controller. But no matter how closely I monitor the world of XBLIG, sweet little gems like Katana Land always manage to sneak in under my radar.
Katana Land is sort of like an old school Ninja Gaiden game minus the insanely frustrating parts. Instead, it’s incredibly easy to jump right in and start cutting up those evil red ninjas who have kidnapped your girlfriend, and I chewed through the bite-sized levels in one sitting like I was housing a bag of Oreos. Read more
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.
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
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. Read more
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. Read more