Games

Digital deviancy and gory gaming evaluated across all platforms...

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Batman: Arkham City

Batman: Arkham City

Imagine your worst nightmare of a day. The absolute day from hell. A day Satan himself would do anything to avoid. Perhaps it involves being beaten and kidnapped, thrown into a prison where escape is a fantasy enjoyed by the insane or dying. Perhaps it involves a chance meeting with a highly intelligent psychopath utterly dedicated to bringing about your end. Perhaps you're imagining strange, vaguely humanoid, deformed monsters lurking in the shadows, watc…

Published on Friday, December 9, 2011

The Binding Of Isaac

The Binding Of Isaac

When Isaac's mother hears the voice of God telling her that she, like many Christians before her, must sacrifice her only child to the heavens, little Isaac is forced to flee for his life, escaping into the rancid family basement. The Binding of Isaac is the latest release from Super Meat Boy (consisting of designer Edmund McMillen and coder Florian Himsl), who together have managed to craft a Rogue-like indie RPG with themes of religious lunacy, mental il…

Published on Friday, November 18, 2011

Dead Rising 2: Off The Record

Dead Rising 2: Off The Record

Never have gamers had such a choice of how to experience the zombie apocalypse. From the brutal and bleak Dead Island, the retro stylings of Project Zomboid, the frantic run and gun mechanics of Left 4 Dead, to the casually comedic Plants vs. Zombies. With a future release list overflowing with undead titles, it's clear this is one infestation that intends to permanently infect our hard drives. Capcom are certainly no strangers to the outbreak, having rele…

Published on Saturday, November 5, 2011

Rage

Rage

First off, it’s important to note that RAGE is a game from id software, the geniuses who brought us DOOM and QUAKE. It’s their first new IP in over a decade, and as such has been highly anticipated. The impressive previews promised a huge open world to explore, light RPG elements, numerous side quests, visceral FPS combat, and vehicle-based races and combat. A lot to live up to. So have they managed it? The answer is yes... and no. After all, this is a gam…

Published on Friday, October 28, 2011

Dead Island (PC Version)

Dead Island (PC Version)

I'm not going to talk about the early developer build being released to the masses by mistake. I'm not going to talk about the “feminist whore” character upgrade code debacle. I'm not even going to talk about the fact that one of the four playable leads has a penchant for not wearing any underwear. What I am going to talk about is what makes Dead Island one of the year’s most unrelentingly bleak, vicious, gory and at times hilarious video games. So leave t…

Published on Friday, September 30, 2011

Hunted: The Demon's Forge

Hunted: The Demon's Forge

According to the box, Hunted: The Demon's Forge (hereafter known as H:TDF) is ‘A Dungeon Crawler for a Gears generation.’ If by that they mean it’s a shallow, repetitive, macho co-op-based button-bashing fantasy romp, then I couldn’t agree more. Published by Bethesda Softworks and released in May of this year, H:TDF faded away with little fanfare, beaten back by waves of critical scorn and personal disappointment. But is that the whole story? Does the game…

Published on Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Zombie Gunship

Zombie Gunship

I waited a few weeks to review this addition to the App store's zombie canon in the hope that the game’s only real flaw, a lack of maps, would be addressed. I’m still waiting, although the fact that the only criticism that can be levelled at Zombie Gunship is that there isn't enough of it can only be a good thing.

Published on Monday, August 15, 2011

Alpha Polaris

Alpha Polaris

Firstly let’s address the elephant in the room. Alpha Polaris pays “homage” to John Carpenter’s The Thing at almost every turn. The setting, the themes of isolation, paranoia and distrust, and the lurking, ever-present evil are all highly reminiscent of Carpenter’s classic. Choosing such an iconic piece of horror cinema as a template is a risky enough venture, but to then decide to produce the game as a point and click horror adventure could be seen as mad…

Published on Friday, July 22, 2011

Alice: Madness Returns

Alice: Madness Returns

Set a decade after American McGee’s Alice, Madness Returns reunites us with the titular heroine, who was released from Rutledge Asylum at the end of the original game and is now living in a bleak Victorian orphanage under the care of Doctor Angus Bumby. Doctor Bumby uses hypnotism to rid children of traumatic memories, and is endeavouring to help Alice forget the horrific fire that killed her family ten years ago. Still plagued by hallucinations, Alice is …

Published on Friday, July 15, 2011

F.3.A.R

F.3.A.R

Imagine, if you will, finding yourself with a sudden and irresistible craving for salt and vinegar crisps. You buy a bag and waste no time opening it, but when you start eating you realise they’re actually cheese and onion. There’s nothing wrong with cheese and onion per se, but in this instance you wanted salt and vinegar. F.3.A.R is much like this. Your craving was for horror in the guise of a solid shooter. What you get is just a solid shooter. It does …

Published on Monday, July 4, 2011

Red Faction Armageddon

Red Faction Armageddon

Violition Inc., developers of Red Faction Armageddon, made a bold decision when they elected to move away from the open world sandbox of destruction that was Red Faction Guerrilla. Instead they have produced what is effectively a corridor-based shooter, with fewer structures to destroy. Red Faction Armageddon is short, linear, clichéd, and at times more than a little frustrating. It’s also rather good.

Published on Friday, July 1, 2011

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

Strictly speaking the Witcher 2 is not a horror game, I’ll give you that. However it is one of the most beautifully realised action RPG’s available, packed with demons, the undead, ghosts and some pretty nasty critters. So while I promise to keep it brief, here’s why any self-respecting horror gaming fan should spend a little time with Geralt of Rivia.

Published on Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Evil Dead The Game

Evil Dead The Game

You don’t always get what you want in life. There's no such thing as a sausage tree, hiding nice plump bangers among its crispy bacon leaves. The taps in our homes aren't labelled 'beer' and 'wine'. And, most lamentably of all, iOS's Evil Dead The Game is an exercise in disappointment.

Published on Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Army Of Darkness Defense

Army Of Darkness Defense

Shop smart, shop S-Mart. Water is wet, the sky is blue, licensed games are turds that dare not dream of polish. These facts are well known to console and PC gamers, but Backflip Studios is endeavouring to make things a little different for iOS gamers. There are numerous examples of competent tower-defence games available on the platform, but with Army of Darkness: Defence strategy takes second place to an iron fist of fun.

Published on Monday, May 30, 2011

Dead Space 2

Dead Space 2

Hindsight is a beautiful thing. Should Isaac Clarke have known of the horrors in store for him onboard the USG Ishimura during the first game, would he still have joined the emergency response team in hope of rescuing his girlfriend Nicole? Committed and as in love as a man can be, if he had known of the horrors Dead Space 2 holds, he’d have signed up to engineers looking for love and walked away.

Published on Sunday, May 29, 2011