Author Archives: Stephen Kimmerly

Grand Theft Auto Online shows a polished multiplayer mode

trailer siege

After watching Rockstar’s latest trailer for Grand Theft Auto V’s mulitplayer, Grand Theft Auto Online. As you can tell from the split titles the new multiplayer is essentially its own game. While Grand Theft Auto V will be released September 17, Grand Theft Auto Online will be released as a download on October 1. The trailer gave gamers a glimpse into the free roam, the action, customization, missions and even the ability to interact with storyline NPC’s. This shows the immense amount of polish has given its mulitplayer modes after years of refining it in other games.

When multiplayer first appreared in Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto IV it offered players their first opportunity of allowing players to connect with others, create their own criminal avatar, freely explore the open city and different gameplay modes you can complete with your friends. While this all started out well the multiplayer in Rockstar games have continued to get better and it’s a good thing it has. Grand Theft Auto IV’s multiplayer lacked polish. You could only select and customize your character to a certain point. More variety could have been implemented and the entire mode had large potenial.

Only a few years later in 2010, Rockstar upped their multiplayer game in Red Dead Redemption. Multiplayer functined very similarly to Grand Theft Auto IV, but with a touch of variety and a more refined combat system Rockstar seemed to have taken multiplayer gaming to new heights. Hell, you could choose from entire list of in game character skins instead of four to six different head torso matches.

Grand Theft Auto Online has taken each of its predecessors positives and has managed to improve upon them in every way. The free roam is back and looking as good as ever and customization has been improved immensely. You can now fully customize your avatar’s look, clothes, choose favorite weapons, get awesome cars and even buy yourself some decent home spaces. New game modes allow for more than the standard deathmatch and capture the flag. You can now recieve unique missions from in game characters giving free roam a little more interactive than simply hanging out with players and uninteractive NPCs. And as promised from Max Payne 3 players will be able to maintain and join crews to complete cooperative missions and earn plenty of cash.

We’ll need to wait a little longer for Grand Theft Auto Online, but with this much fun and content it’ll be a welcome breath of fresh air after completeing the single player campaign (yes, I intend on completeing it that quickly). Look for Grand Theft Auto V coming out September 17 and Grand Theft Auto Online October 1 yo become your own crime kingpin.

Also, here’s the multiplayer trailer in case you haven’t seen it, yet:

Source: Rockstar

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An inside look at writing the Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD guide

link wind wakerI always love getting the behind-the-scenes look with anything I like and seeing how it all comes together. And, game guides are no different, especially for the upcoming The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD.

In a recent post over on Prima Guides official site, Wind Waker’s original guide writer, Steve Stratton gives us all a little bit of what his experience has been like with the updated version. Stratton described how much more the games visuals popped off the screen making the game feel fresh again. As far as the Wind Waker HD’s mechanics are concerned many of them will remain the same. Stratton does mention a new sail, aptly called the Swift Sail. This sail adds some additional speed to Links boat as well as allowing you to sail regardless of wind direction.

You can learn more about Stratton’s time playing The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD over at Prima’s homepage.

Source: Prima Games

Tom vs. The Armies of Hell now has an available demo

office tomTom vs The Armies of Hell is slowly picking up steam on its Kickstarter campaign, gaining a few more thousand dollars within a few weeks. In addition to this good news Sean Burgoon has released the games first demo for the masses to check out. PC and Mac owners will be able to get a hold of the new demo today. Linux users may need to wait until next week, though Burgoon isn’t making a guarantee for the time slot, but he assures Linux users will be getting a version of the game. Head on over to the Tom vs. The Armies of Hell Kickstarter page and get a hold of this early demo.

Source: Tom vs. The Armies of Hell Kickstarter Page

Medieval II: Total War Zelda mod too cool to pass up

hyrule battle

I’ve been seeing this around the internet, but it is way too cool to not share. A new mod for Medieval II: Total War will wake us into the wars fought the world of Hyrule. That’s right, a Legend of Zelda mod, now in its 3.0 version the mod allows to take control of 19 different factions all ranging from several of series different races. So the Zoras, Gorons, Dekus and the Kokiri are available to play as. The most striking aspect however is the mods, very grim trailer. Blood stained battle  fields and dead protagonists aren’t exactly what you think when you think Zelda. The mods campaign does use actual events from the recent Hyrule Historia book. Needless, to say they’re definitely taking from some of the darker moments in Hyrule history. You check it out in the trailer below and if you’re looking to play you can download the mod here.

Via: Destructoid Read: Rock, Paper, Shotgun

Grand Theft Auto V looking great in new gameplay video

Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V’s September 13 release date isn’t very far off, but with a recent gameplay trailer it’s hard not to feel immense anticipation. Rockstar’s most recent trailer details some the games deep and customizable mechanincs, including how the three main protagonists will be controlled.

To start, the game shows off some impressive the impressive visuals we’ve been seeing for the past few months. You think it would get old at this point, but I still find my self amazed at how gorgeous this games looks and how badly I want to explore every inch of it. More importantly, the trailer reveals how Grand Theft Auto V’s three protagonists will be used in the game. Players will be able to switch from characters in missions to offer support to the other characters. In one scene we see Michael rappeling into an office building and kidnapping an individual. With two guns on him as he takes the man hostage, we see a small portrait of all three characters pop up in the lower-right hand corner of the screen. The player quickly selects Franklin, who is standing on top a roof of a building across from Michael. With sniper rifle in hand, Franklin pops the two gun men and Michael can make his escape. You can also switch between the three characters in their off time see what each of them is up to that particular day.

The trailer also shows how you can plan each heist your would be thieves can pull off. You can hire other individuals to work for you to create distractions or simply act as get aways. You’ll have access to floor plans and other helpful intel so you can plan out each mission in which ever style you prefer. For the most part plans will range from being subtle and smart, using gas to knock out witnesses and guards, or reckless, smashing the doors down holding everyone up.

With all that money in hand you might be wondering what a criminal can do with it in Los Santos. You can spend it on tattoos and cars frivolously, or you take bigger risks in the stocks or Los Santos ever growing real estate market. There are also a number of activities you can participate in if you’re interested. Hunting, scooba diving and even a little bit of golfing to cool your itchy trigger finger.

If all of this sounds interesting, you can enjoy the full trailer following the link.

Source: Rockstar Newswire

 

 

Tom vs. The Armies of Hell proves your job could be much worse

scared tom

Hate the boredom and drudgery of working in a cubicle? Well, worse things can happen, like a host of demons from Hell looking to destroy all mankind attacking your office. In Tom vs. The Armies of Hell our titular hero has such a day on his hands.

Burgoon Entertainment’s, isometric action game has you take control of software engineer, Tom, against a host of demon spawn from hell. With the help of some useful weapons and a powerful demon arm. Tom will need to battle his way through the Void and Hell in order to put an end to their monstrous rampage. As you continue fighting your way down, players will be able to upgrade Tom’s weapons and his demon arm to deliver more powerful shots and different demon powers. In addition, creator Sean Burgoon, is also thinking about adding temporary upgrades such a speed boosts, shields and double damage of the sort.

Tom vs. The Armies of Hell is also focused on its story. While not in a highly emotional sense, it does look to offer some really off-beat and dark humor as you play through the game.

The game is still in very early development stages and is currently being funded via Kickstarter. The game sounds interesting enough and looks to provide some old fashioned isometric, action gaming while still offering a humorous story and pure fun. There is no release date, but PC, Linux and Mac gamers will be available platforms when it does release. In the meantime, head on over to Tom vs. The Armies of Hell for more info and some early videos. Enjoy the cinematic trailer below

Source: Kickstarter

Image: dsogaming.com

[News] Bioshock movie died by Ken Levine’s hands

Ken levine

[gematsu.com]

The much talked about Bioshock movie was officially canceled at the beginning of this year. And it seems Ken Levine was the one who decided to place the final brick in the projects tomb.

In a recent article with Eurogamer, Levine revealed he personally decided to end the entire project after the film’s original director, Gore Verbinski, was replaced by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, director of Inacto. Levine explained how Universal Studios disagreed with the R rating Verbinski wanted to achieve for the film. Levine felt the handing off to a new director and the need for a PG-13 rating, wasn’t in line with the creative direction he wanted.

I think Levine made the right move. Too many video game movies have failed when the creative direction slips too far away from the source material. I’d rather see this project killed off than endure another terrible adaptation, especially a franchise as respected as Bioshock. He did assure a movie may still be made, but “it’d have to be the right combination of people.” Well, let’s hope those forces come together, to bring this film back from the dead and into theaters.

Source [Eurogamer]

 

 

The Cave Review

the cave gang

Adventure games. They’re fun in their own right, but for me they always seemed slow and exceptionally tedious. Items start piling up in your inventory, movement lacks constant interaction and puzzles can be so confusing, you’d rather walk away from than solve. Ron Gilbert and Double Fine have been able to eliminate some of these problems in some unique ways in The Cave making it one of the few fun adventure games I’ve played in a long time, but some of these innovations also backfire.

The Cave involves seven different characters looking for what they desire most within the titular cave. This talking, sentient cave intends on making their dreams come true, but through the most twisted morality tales you’ve ever come across. These characters aren’t exactly what you would call good people. Most of their back stories, which come from cave paintings found on the walls, involve some selfish motive or ill intended plan to get what they want. Finding these paintings becomes a huge draw in your exploration. Each one offers an entertaining story you’ll want to follow to their very grim end.

The Cave itself offers some humorous banter in the usual Double Fine fashion, but it mostly offers up a few good chuckles from time to time. The banter is still entertaining enough, though, makes the living cave an integral character in the whole adventure.

You can only choose three characters to be brought in to the cave at a time. As you explore you’ll travel through general areas of the cave and character specific areas, both of which involve some platform-lite mechanics. The platforming isn’t complicated and keeps you interacting with the game throughout the entire experience. It doesn’t seem entirely necessary at times, but when it comes to the lack of interaction in some other adventure games The Cave offers up something a little more interactive.

Puzzles seem incredibly complex at times, but more often than not they are solvable. Visual cues often reveal the answers and there isn’t the hour long act of trial and error you need to go through. Once, the answer becomes obvious you’ll feel smart as hell, walking away from each puzzle with a feeling of satisfaction. One of the more interesting puzzles involves a monster and a tape recorder in an underground zoo. I’ll let you wrap your head around that for a moment.

The items used to solve these puzzles are carried by each individual in the three party group. You have no inventory of any kind, only what each character can carry. This keeps you from wasting time rummaging through an inventory system overflowing with items. Most of the items you need to solve the current puzzle are in the area.

What I enjoyed the most was the varied environments The Cave featured. One would think exploring a cave may leave you looking at nothing but stalagmites and stalactites, yet each of the distinct character sections of the cave offer something a little different each time. The Knight’s section takes place within a medieval castle filled with guards, a dragon, a princess and a king. The Monks involves climbing to a mountain top and confronting several very Zen like puzzles in the process.

Water and lighting effects give the cave a very surreal feel to it. Then again I wouldn’t expect any less from a living and breathing cave.

Despite being able to iron out the problems interaction and inventory, The Cave still has problems with pacing. Finding your way through character sections can be confusing at first and even after finding your way around you’ll be consumed by a lot of needless backtracking to solve puzzles. The hillbilly’s carnival section was the worst, having to take items from opposite sides of the level to solve puzzles and then bring them back again. It isn’t as slow as a point-and-click adventure title, but if you don’t have the patience for the tedious backtracking this game isn’t for you.

Despite these setbacks, the game to some degree is still offers some classic adventuring fun. Not to mention you can play with two other people to solve the puzzles together. Ron Gilbert and Insomniac Games have once again demonstrated their talent for adventure games. They may not have solved the pacing problem completely, but if you have the patience, I recommend you start your spelunking today.

[Strategy] Borderlands: Bounty Board-Hidden Journal: Arid Badlands

You’re going to need to prepare yourself before you can go looking for the Mine Key in the arid hills. Time to complete some more of those bounty board quests. We’ll be searching for the lost diaries of Patricia Tannis, a scientist who came to Pandora searching for the vault. As you listen to each entry you’ll find out more about the vain doctor as well as witness the loss of her sanity.

The first journal can be found in Bone Head’s hideout. Follow the main road to his hideout and you’ll find the journal attached to the camp’s generators on the northwest side of the camp. You may have to deal with Bone Head and his bandits again if you’ve been away from the area for a long stretch of time. Pick it up to listen to the mad doctor’s first rant.

Head south to Nine-Toes bandit outpost to find the second journal entry attached to a steel pillar near the Fyrestone Coliseum. Tannis gives her less than favorable opinion of the locals in this entry, which isn’t all surprising given her personality.

Zephyr Station will be housing the third entry. Find yourself a Catch-a-Ride Station if you’ve been on foot thus far. Head towards the station and be prepared for  a fight with more bandits. Clear them out of the area and claim Tannis’ third journal entry.

The Fourth Journal Entry can be found near the gate that leads to the western part of the Arid Badlands. The diary is at the top of the set of ramps leading to an outpost tower. The journal can be found in the tower when you reach the top.

Tannis’s fifth and final journal entry can be found to the far west beyond Zephyr Station. The location is a shanty town hidden behind a large bandit fort. Instead dealing with every enemy in the fort grab a runner and follow the main road drive off into the path that leads to Zephyr Station. Instead south, follow the path west that runs along the cliffs edge. Check your map and follow the objective marker and you’ll get there in no time.

A group of bandits and a flock of rakk will be guarding the area so get to work on killing them. Use shotgun against the rakks and use your best weapons against the bandits. With the area clear you’ll find the last journal lodged between a group of grey barrels.

Head back to the bounty board for your reward as  well as some advice from Tannis on how to forget what you heard.

REWARD:

Experience: 2699

Money: $5454

Update: Working On A Borderlands 2 Strategy. You Should Follow It.

Allo, readers, gamers and gamer-readers (it’s a real word). If you’ve been following my Borderlands strategy guides, you’ll be pleased to know that I’ll be creating a strategy guide for Borderlands 2 as well, so it will be more relevant than the Borderlands guide. If you’re looking to follow this extensive guide you’ll be able to follow it at Non-Fiction Gaming, under my alias, Senior Stiv.

My first post will go live sometime this week, all depending on when I receive the game in the mail (today, hopefully). I will continue to provide Borderland strategies here at The Stick and The Button. I hope you all enjoy the new strategy guide and find them just as useful as the ones I write here. Peace!

Image Source: incgamer.com