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Pritpaul Bains

Gaming Roundup: We Plays The Bright Lord DLC, Precious

PAX East rolled through Boston this past weekend, and it’s safe to say that gaming as we know it is in a transitional phase. A largely low-key exhibition was highlighted by teases of potentially industry-shifting devices over the year (and next year) to come, but nothing yet imminent on the horizon. We don’t mean to imply that PAX East 2015 was entirely uneventful, though. Between rapid improvements in virtual reality tech, a new Blizzard IP, and live gameplay demos of Final Fantasy XV, there was plenty to talk about.

[The VR arms race escalates, and the Gaming Roundup bids you all a final farewell.]

Gaming Roundup: Wander Through Ori and the Blind Forest in March

It’s not every day that a stylish, beautiful, Studio Ghibli-inspired 2D platformer hits the retail shelves, but that’s exactly what’s happening this March when Moon Studios’ Ori and the Blind Forest lands on the Xbox Marketplace this March. With gameplay guided by such genre stalwarts as the Rayman and Metroid franchises, artwork influenced by Ghibli’s lush, gorgeous anime classics, and a coming-of-age story inspired by some of the best Western animation has to offer in The Iron Giant and The Lion King, Ori is building a lot of expectations in a hurry—especially for an indie game.

[“A rebirth it was. Through a bond that was made.”]

Gaming Roundup: The First Must-Have Game of 2015 is from 1998

For over a decade after its critically-acclaimed release in 1998, Grim Fandango was viewed as a lost classic—a forgotten disk that remained only attainable enough to affirm its scarcity throughout the 2000s. The game languished in the clutches of outdated OSes for years, and physical copies were banished to the furthest corners of eBay, where they were sold at inordinate prices. When began turning yesteryear’s classics into digitized, DRM-free treasure troves, Grim Fandango quickly became their most-requested game. Rumors of the game’s return occasionally surfaced, but for so long, were never anything more than shadows and dust.

Until last year.

[“Buenos dias!”]

Gaming Roundup: Evolve Slouches Towards Release

Left 4 Dead launched just over six years ago, but the impact it had on the gaming landscape can still be felt today. Developer Turtle Rock Studios delivered a new standard for co-op multiplayer done right, but are now looking to push the envelope further with their next IP.

Enter Evolve—a multiplayer shooter still involving a team of four taking on monsters, but of a very different nature than L4D’s swarming zombie packs. Evolve works off of a 4 vs 1 concept, in which four hunters take on one very large, very powerful, and very angry monster. Unbalanced multiplayer is a tricky thing to pull off, but early indications suggest that Turtle Rock succeeded.

[“Choose your side.”]

Gaming Roundup: Uncharted 4 Story Details Emerge

As the curtains close on 2014, a year that placed next-gen hardware in living rooms around the world, 2015 looks to bring the first wave of true next-gen games to the masses. Last year’s launch titles certainly looked impressive, but not many (with a select few exceptions) ventured into the realm of true innovation. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End qualifies as one of 2015’s great hopes in this respect, but until the last few weeks, little was known about developer Naughty Dog’s return to their best-known franchise other than the fact that it existed. Now the floodgates are beginning to open, and it’s hard not to like what we see.

[“Some chains can never be broken.”]

Gaming Roundup: The Best (And Worst) of 2014

2014 was an eventful year in gaming. The Xbox One and PS4 both hit their one year anniversaries in strikingly different market positions, but a late surge by Microsoft helped bridge the gap. We’re still waiting for a game to take full advantage of current-gen capabilities, but 2015 looks extremely promising. Oh, right—and there was that little thing where we saw the worst of a large section of the gaming community for far too long a period of time. Let’s get right to our list of the best and worst of gaming in 2014.

[The year at a glance, a click away…]

Gaming Roundup: Uncharted 4 Makes the Leap to PS4

Sony’s PlayStation Experience rolled through Las Vegas this past weekend, bringing with it a number of exciting tidbits on several hotly-anticipated titles set to release in 2015—including the company’s first potential console-defining game, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. When last we left Nate Drake, he was wandering Colombia, France, Syria, and Yemen in search of yet another of Sir Francis Drake’s treasures, before getting hitched (again) to his wife, Elena. While anyone familiar with the previous 3 games of the series will have a fairly accurate sense of the game’s atmosphere and action, Uncharted 4 will still have its fair share of surprises on the PS4—including a new member of the Drake family.

[“It’s good to see you’re alive, little brother.”]

Gaming Roundup: Is Telltale’s Game of Thrones As Good As The Walking Dead?

In recent years, developer Telltale Games has positioned itself at the forefront of AAA dilemma-based, narrative-driven video games. After taking their medicine via the less-than-successful Back to the Future and Jurassic Park episodic features, the studio learned from its mistakes and hit one out of the park with their Walking Dead series—a critical and commercial smash hit that focused on engaging characters, tough decisions, and a relentless story en route to becoming a critical and commercial smash hit.

With success came opportunity, and Telltale was given the reins to one of the hottest IPs in the market today—Game of Thrones. Prior gaming ventures into Westeros have generally been about as successful as Viserys Targaryen’s quest to reclaim the Iron Throne, but Telltale’s Walking Dead story-heavy formula seemed to be a tailor-made fit for ASOIAF. Does Game of Thrones finally have a worthy entry in the gaming-verse?

WARNING: here there be spoilers for those new to the show or books.

[“What you do will have repercussions.”]

Gaming Roundup: Dragon Age: Inquisition Takes Flight This Week

With Dragon Age: Inquisition, industry heavyweight BioWare is diving back into the gaming waters with their first full-fledged RPG since 2012’s fantastic Mass Effect 3.

Dragon Age: Origins was a revelation to gamers in 2009 (two years after the launch of the first Mass Effect), helping to firmly establish its developer as a founding father of the modern RPG—as though the creators of Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights really needed any further cred. While Dragon Age II was widely viewed as a step backward for the franchise, BioWare promised to take the criticism (most commonly, repetitive gameplay and a distinct lack of environmental variety) to heart and put to rest any outstanding concerns in Inquisition. Did they succeed?

[Lead them or fall.]

Gaming Roundup: Blizzard Rebounds with Overwatch

A couple of months ago, the gaming universe mourned the demise of Blizzard Entertainment’s Titan—an ambitious new MMO shooter eight years in the making. The game’s cancellation raised a number of questions—most notably, how it would impact Blizzard’s bottom line and whether the all-star developer had any other strategies by which to foster and develop a new IP.

As it turned out, Blizzard had a plan all along. Meet Overwatch.

[“Don’t worry, loves. Cavalry’s here.”]

Gaming Roundup: Grim Fandango Returns From the Land of the Dead

Last week, the internet’s finest purveyor of classic gaming,, announced an agreement with LucasArts that brought a veritable treasure trove of 90s PC classics back to computers, including the much-acclaimed X-Wing and Tie Fighter games. However, even amidst this bounty, a sour note sounded. Where was Grim Fandango? LucasArts’ heralded comedy noir offering, headed by the legendary Tim Schafer, blended Aztec mythology and film noir into a colorful, stylish, and beautifully written game that left a lasting impression upon all who played it. It’s been one of’s most-requested games of the past decade. What reason could there be to hold back one of the most beloved games of the 90s?

Well, for one, it’s coming back next year.

[“Guess they couldn’t save me, eh?”]

Gaming Roundup: Kick Into Sunset Overdrive This Halloween

Sunset Overdrive isn’t exactly your classic Halloween video game, but hey—there are mutant zombies, so… close, right? Insomniac Games’ fast-paced rail-based shooter took E3 by unexpected storm earlier this year, going from virtual unknown to being touted as a franchise-defining title for a console sorely in need of one at the time—the Xbox One. The much anticipated game launched this week, just in time for October 31st. Is it worth your time?

[“My life didn’t start until the world came to an end.”]

Gaming Roundup: Sid Meier’s Civilization: Beyond Earth Blasts Off This Week

Somewhere along the line, someone decided that Sid Meier’s Civilization—in space—would be a fantastic idea, and… well, they were right. It was an excellent pitch, ripe with possibility if pulled off successfully and billed as a spiritual successor to 1999’s excellent Alpha Centauri. So how did Firaxis Games fare with the much-anticipated Civilization: Beyond Earth?

[“A new beginning for mankind…”]

Gaming Roundup: Dare to Survive The Evil Within

Legendary survival horror developer and creator Shinji Mikami made his return to the gaming world as his latest endeavor, The Evil Within, launched worldwide this week. Mikami, best known for his creation of the Resident Evil franchise and his work on Dino Crisis, was last heard from in 2011 when the underrated Shadows of the Damned released. Since then, he has been hard at work on returning to the roots of survival horror, the genre that made him a legend. How did he fare with The Evil Within?

[“What do you fear, little one?”]

Gaming Roundup: Become the Hunted in Alien: Isolation

Alien: Isolation has been on the radar of the gamingverse for quite some time. Long since pegged as the game to make things right after the debacle that was Gearbox’s Aliens: Colonial Marines, Isolation did nothing to curb anticipation in its previews, which made it out to be everything franchise fans wanted in an Alien game — claustrophobia, extreme vulnerability, space stations, flamethrowers, and one deadly, badass alien.

Well, the game’s been out for a couple of days now, so what better way to usher in October than with a closer look at one of the premiere horror offerings of the season?

[“Some things are better left lost…”]