Originally released in 1995 on the Sega Saturn, the title received critical acclaim, with one critic at the time saying:
‘It orchestrates incredible story animation with brilliant, 3D flight graphics to create what is, basically, the ultimate evolution of Space Harrier.’
Now we have a second gameplay trailer to look at:
The premise: on a far, lone planet, you encounter two dragons awakened from the ancient times. Armed with a deadly gun from the past, and the guidance of your armored blue dragon, you must fulfill your destiny and keep the Prototype Dragon from reaching the Tower or die trying.
Developed by MegaPixel Studio, arcade shooter Panzer Dragoon will be released on Switch this winter.
Companionship, we are always looking for it, be it in form of friendships, family, colleagues at work… A lover. We like to think we need only ourselves but when we feel empty and alone it’s companionship that saves us, picks us up and reminds us: it’s ok.
Without companionship, I doubt I’d be here, writing this very article, for you.
Pode is a 3D puzzle game developed by Henchman and Goon. You play as Bulder (rock character) and/or Glo (Light character) who explore an ancient ruin of a lost civilization to help Glo return home. Each character has their own unique abilities to help to solve the puzzles littered within the game, however many of the puzzles rely on both characters working together.
As this game is best played as a couch co-op experience you can also play it single-player with the capability of switching characters on the fly.
Both characters influence the world differently, with Bulder controlling rock formations and Glo blooms life in the environments that you help traverse the levels. Each character are opposites, and this is shown through the mechanics; this even extends to some of the slight physic-based puzzles too. It adds to the game an emotional depth, through the gameplay, which is rarely seen in others – one can’t simply complete a level without the other and this is further expressed by using each other as a platform to reach inaccessible areas.
Graphically the game has a very minimalistic style yet it’s utterly gorgeous, taking inspiration from Norwegian art and nature. It has this painted look using a lot of flat tones and colours, where these darker tones combine with brighter lush primary colours. It complements the gameplay by enhancing the relaxing gameplay experience. You’ll find yourself as Glo wanting to bloom life in the whole level just to add the bright colour pallet unfurl in a hollow and lifeless landscape; a great mechanical metaphor of the game’s central themes.
It’s hard to talk about the game because it’s fairly basic, but that’s the point. Minimalism is the heart of the design. Why you ask? So, it doesn’t distract from its main point, companionship. With a button to hold the other character’s hand, we see a game that’s inherently positive. You can’t help being touched by the game when you see these two opposite characters slowly begin to understand each other – especially in today’s social division. You can’t help but smile to yourself at those little tender moments.
Talking with Linn Sovig, the Marketing/Publishing Manager for Henchman and Goon, Linn explained the concept came about so that parents could play a game with their children that they could enjoy. That they both could experience the same positivity together and that they must interact with each other not just through the game’s mechanics, but verbally too.
Linn told me that there are hidden sections within the game and that these hidden sections are each dedicated to loved ones lost during the development cycle.
There is so much heart within this game, so much love and you indulge in the same passion while playing. You can play this game solo, but you will be robbing yourself the entire purpose of this game.
What Henchman and Goon have created here is a rarity within video gaming, something you feel. I urge anyone who plays games with people to buy this game and just experience the warmth the game has to offer.
Pode is out now on Switch with a PlayStation 4 port currently in development. Enjoy and remember what it’s like to feel something again.
This upcoming 2D adventure game grants players a thrilling journey of puzzle-solving and deep narrative between two differing climates personified as partners in love, Rime and Ember.
The announcement comes with a release window of this winter for consoles and PC. Here are all of the details about Degrees of Separation:
Both single player and co-op multiplayer is available for players to explore a unique world brimming with puzzling obstacles highlighting the useful differences uncovered in both Rime and Ember.
In 2-player co-op, players will work together as a team to achieve passage through tons of environmental challenges utilizing the distinct elemental powers of heat and cold.
The game features a powerful mixture of passionate story-driven narrative and inspiring puzzle mechanics between the two co-stars.
Check out an early prototype build from 2014 of Degrees of Separation below:
“The combination of innovative mechanics and powerful narrative is what drew us to this game(…) It’s why we seek out these very important indie titles that have a true story to tell.” – Christina Seelye, CEO of Modus Games
Degrees of Separation is now set to release in February of 2019 on the PS4, Xbox One, Switch and PC. Expect more details, including a trailer, to be revealed in the coming months.
The Switch library of old-school turn-based RPGs just got a little heavier with the recent release of Fernz Gate from developers Exe-Create.
Dive into a fantasy world as Alex, an ordinary high-school student dumped into an unordinary situation in the once-peaceful world of Fernland.
Check out the Switch reveal trailer for Fernz Gate below:
Fernz Gate Switch – The Vibrant World Of Fernland
Here are a few key notes about the recently released vintage-style RPG game, Fernz Gate:
Players will take on the role of Alex as he drifts away into an unknown world filled with conflict and dangerous foes. After teaming up with Lita – a stranger from a peaceful world similar to Alex’s – they embark on a journey like no other to discover the truths about Fernland.
The classic turn-based combat system is simple enough for any RPG newcomer to tackle vigorous enemy battles with confidence and ease.
Like most RPG games of this nature, players will discover and recruit new friends and allies to help grow in strength and numbers.
Players can use party members not participating in battle scenarios to discover new secrets, as well as upgrade weapons and achieve new skills to open up combat.
Recently only available on mobile platforms, Fernz Gate is now accessible on the Nintendo Switch to help satiate the urge to play on home televisions and, of course, the handheld mode on the Switch.
I was confused when I first loaded up Victor Vran. Not because I didn’t know what I was doing, more that I didn’t know what I was playing. The reason? Titular monster-hunter come demon-slayer Victor Vran is voiced by Doug Cockle who many will instantly recognise as the voice behind iconic Witcher, Geralt.
Now if you told me I was playing a spin-off of the Witcher series, I would have believed you. Let’s look at that facts; the game is set in an alternate past where monsters, demons and other nasties have started running riot and it’s your job to pursue and end them. Sound familiar? Yeah, that’s what I thought, hence the confusion.
Haemimont Games, having worked on past titles such as the Tropico series, bring Victor Vran in its complete form to the Switch – full to the brim with extra content. More on that later, first of all, let’s take a look at what Victor Vran is in more detail.
Like I mentioned, you play as Vran and it is your job to liberate the cursed city of Zagoravia from all manner of evil. Set as a top-down RPG, you begin to understand that this isn’t your average top-down adventure game. You choose how you want to play with outfits giving you different abilities, weapons granting different advantages and disadvantages and a levelling system that doesn’t force you down one particular route.
For instance, you can wield a shotgun running around like a crazy medieval Duke Nukem (which I did) or you can wield a sword or hammer and get up close and personal to your foes. Added to which a sharp fedora-topped outfit allows your demon powers to recharge slowly over time or a hunters outfit will charge your powers whenever you get hit. Using your demon powers on a large group of monsters is also very satisfying, especially splatting a swarm of spiders with a meteor shower! To top it off, each new level allows you to boost a given attribute such as ranged damage, health points or to get a loot chest – of which the content is random.
It’s little things like this that allow you to tailor the game around how you like to play and tackle each mission differently. Each level/area will also have challenges for you to complete which will grant bonus experience points, gold or other boosts to help you on your way.
Now whilst Victor Vran won’t set the genre alight, more likely sit amongst other great top-down titles, it does prove a massive point. That being that these sort of games can work and thrive on the Switch, which it does. Throughout testing, I played in handheld mode and the whole thing ran smoothly and rather quickly. Navigation wasn’t hard, nor was controlling Vran or the camera which made it so easy to play that I just kept going. One area would lead to another and I easily found myself losing a couple of hours at a time taking out skeletons, spiders and other ghostly beings.
The combat is quite intense too and doesn’t allow you to pause for breath for very long. If you stay stationary for too long you can quickly find yourself surrounded so staying mobile is always advisable, finding a brief respite where you can. This is one of the things which will keep you going as each fight is unique, requiring a different tactic each time.
In this, the Overkill Edition, Victor Vran comes with a host of extra content for you to tackle. Upon starting out you are given the choice of playing the base campaign, a campaign which is inspired by and revolves around the band Motorhead (paying tribute to the late metal legend, Lemmy) and finally the Fractured Worlds mode where everything takes an even more chaotic turn. Considering that the game can also be played online, there are many different things to play and ways in which to do so making this a great outing and addition to the Switch’s ever-expanding list of titles.
My only worry is over the pricing as this sits at £34.99 meaning it’s competing with the bigger and stronger titles out there, including Nintendo’s own strong first-party outings. Would people buy it at this price? It’s unlikely. Would I recommend buying it at this price? I don’t think so, maybe if it was more like half of that, which is a shame, as it may get overlooked until a price drop further down the line. If that does happen, however, I would recommend playing Victor Vran as I’m sure you’ll enjoy this charming adventure through Zagoravia.
One would imagine that if you backtrack before the release of Hello Neighbor by Dynamic Pixels, before coding and artwork, before storyboards and script writing, someone, somewhere had a great idea for an amazing game.
Hello Neighbor [Switch] – Great Idea, Little Satisfaction
They wrote pages and pages of scribbled notes on a napkin sitting at a diner booth in the late hours of the night, drinking coffee and eating a cold plate of fries. This budding game designer would feverishly jot down ideas for a wild new concept that would revolutionize a genre. As their fries got colder and the napkin count rose, a fully fleshed out world would start to take shape.
I am sure whatever was written on those grease-stained napkins was pure genius, but that genius never made it past the face towelette stage. Hello Neighbor, a self-professed “Stealth Survival Horror” game, might have sounded like a spectacular idea at the start, but what we got will more likely make you weep then shake in your boots.
The main objective is to sneak into your shady neighbor’s house and find a way to break into the basement to discover his dirty secret(s). You have the option of going through open bedroom windows, the front door, via the roof, and more. Be careful though, if the evil neighbor catches you, he’ll throw you out on the street. If he sees you lurking outside, he’ll jump through the closed window to boot you onto the curb. Magically, the window gets fixed in an instant.
Sounds easy enough, but as you find different ways of infiltrating, the Neighbor finds new ways of stopping you. The A.I. in the game is meant to counter your every move. Where once the front door was open and clear, now there will be cameras watching. Certain windows will have bear traps to stop you, or the Neighbor will find new shortcuts to get to you before you complete your mission.
If you manage to make it in the house, you can hide in cabinets and under tables as your enemy searches frantically to no avail. The house itself grows with new rooms and ways of getting lost, which I found to be pretty neat.
It should all be fun and innovative, but instead, feels clunky, buggy, and frustrating. For instance, you can stack boxes to reach a window, but the physics engine seems to be off. The boxes are infuriatingly easy to knock over before ever getting anything done. It reminds me of a late ’90s virtual reality game that you think is going to be really awesome but ends up disappointing your childhood.
The colour pallet looks as if Thomas the Tank Engine had a baby with Marge Simpson, and then gave it up for adoption to Gumby. It’s not that I hate the way everything looks, it’s just that it has this uncomfortableness about it.
There was one thing I did like about the game, and that’s a rather interesting auditory experience. If you listen carefully, you can hear the Neighbor’s footsteps as he walks inside and outside of the house (and it’s easy to differentiate between the two).
You can hear him as he is using the kitchen or bathroom sink, snoring in the living room, or grumbling to himself. The Neighbor will even turn on a record player or a broken TV, which you can then turn off by sneaking in through a window. Eliminating the extraneous noise allows the player to hear better and locate where the Neighbor might be at a given time. Out of all the things the developers were going for, I really enjoyed this one specific play mechanic the best. It isn’t perfect, but it’s fun.
Truth be told, I never made it too far into unlocking the mystery of it all, but that’s mostly because I stopped caring. I know this review sounds harsh, but that’s probably because I feel the concept is actually really cool, just poorly executed.
I Love the idea of an A.I. that learns and makes things harder minute by minute. I love the idea of using your senses to avoid the enemy and solve the puzzle. I am a huge fan of using your surroundings to aid in the quest. I just wish it all came together better.
The incredibly strategic chef simulating, food preparation co-op game Overcooked is finally receiving its well-deserved sequel this August.
If you pre-order the game before its release you will gain an early advantage with five exclusive chefs unlocked from the “Too Many Cooks” extra content pack.
Overcooked 2 – Five Exclusive Chefs
From a Calico cat to a space alien chef, expand your cooking arsenal with a variety of unique top chefs in the upcoming Overcooked 2:
Here’s everything that’s been added to the cooperative cooking sequel from indie developers Ghost Town Games:
Levels can now dynamically shift around you to help throw in an extra dash of depth to the overall cooking strategy. Players will also find themselves fighting the heat in a number of various kitchen settings, such as slicing rolls in a high-class sushi restaurant to harnessing your culinary skills in the wizard school kitchen.
No longer stuck with local co-op only, players can now participate in up to 4-player co-op action, either online or local.
Overcooked 2 will introduce the brand-new throwing mechanic which allows players to cautiously heave ingredients to one another – or into the blender – in tight situations when time is of the essence.
A slew of new recipes will make their debut in Overcooked 2 which means all-new equipment to handle and ingredients to uncover.
On top of the completely new roster of chefs featured in Overcooked 2, the “Too Many Cooks” pre-order bonus comes with 5 talented exclusive chefs: Calico Cat chef, Monkey chef, Unicorn chef, Walrus chef and Alien chef.
Fans don’t have much longer to wait to get their hands prepped and ready for insane cooking action as Overcooked 2 hits stores – both digital and physical copies – on August 7th for the PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC for £19.99/€24.99/$29.99.
If you’re a student, summer vacation might be here or just around the corner; or maybe you’re taking a well-deserved break from work.
When I’m travelling, I usually have a book and a portable gaming console in my backpack. I think we all can agree that there are moments in our travelling where we have to just… wait. So, what better way to spend that time than with some good games?
Before I begin, here are some of my criteria for what makes a game suitable for travel:
It has to have a quick and easy save function.
Simple to flip up, easy to put down. It must be easily detachable; can’t really start an adventure on one of Telltale’s games, if you know what I mean.
It has to be fun, of course!
My Top 3 Games For Travelling
I used to have my Nintendo 2DS, but now I am fortunate to have my Nintendo Switch, which brings me plenty of different games to play when I am away from home.
This is my top 3 list of games I like to play when I’m travelling:
1: Pokémon (Red, Yellow, Blue)
You probably thought I was going to say Pokémon Go, right? Nah. It’s not the real deal. While I quite like Pokémon Go, that is not what I reach for when I choose to play a game from that universe.
I always turn to the classics, and they are so nice to play when travelling. Even though it’s easy to get hooked, it is a game that is easily “detachable,” (unless you’re fighting a gym leader, then everything can wait!) where you can play small parts of the game and leave on short notice if needed.
Starsceptre is an excellent action-packed retro shooter where you can play levels without having to worry about losing progress. The levels are fairly short, and it automatically saves after each level. I even wrote a review for it here on Nitchi (even though it has changed quite a bit since then, but for the better, if you ask me!). Excellent if you want something retro, fun and challenging.
Also nice if you’re not in possession of a Switch or another portable console, as Starsceptre is available on your iPhone or iPad.
3: Stardew Valley
Making this game available on the Nintendo Switch might perhaps be one of the best decisions Chucklefish ever made. If you want something to calm you down after the continual stress involved with travelling, this is the game for you.
Stardew Valley is a slow-paced, farming game, very relaxing when you need a breather. If you need to save quickly, just go to bed (the save function), but on the cost of cutting the day short.
With the Switch, gaming on the go has never been easier. Let us know if you have any suggestions for other games that are nice for playing on the go!
Fighting iconic terrors like Godzilla and Alien from the classic VHS film era is due to hit the video gaming world in the upcoming co-op platformer, Epic Loon.
Gather your friends and choose to partner up or battle each other in engaging and completely bonkers gameplay from French developers Macrales Studios.
Epic Loon Brings Back Beloved Couch Co-Op
Here are a few takeaways surrounding the premise and mechanics of the upcoming indie title:
Teaming up with up to four players in local co-op, players will take on the role of the vile alien species born from the coveted VHS cleaner tape determined to wipe out the collection of quirky renditions of VHS classics, such as Nosferatu, Jurassic Park and Godzilla.
Two separate gameplay modes will have players either teaming up for a co-op adventure or duking it out in competitive ‘Battle Mode’ across various classic film settings.
Revitalizing the local couch co-op experience brings forth a vintage style of gameplay to help match the retro ambience.
With over 350 levels to master and unique game modes like Hardcore difficulty and Speedrun settings, players will find themselves amidst a bizarre action platformer overflowing with content.
Epic Loon will come crashing down on the classic VHS scene after the start of summer on June 28th, 2018. The Switch, Xbox One and PS4 are all seeing console releases of the alien swarming co-op platformer, as well as a launch on PC.
Stay tuned for more on the classic film destroying couch co-op title, Epic Loon, as we near the official release next month.