The last episode left us in a rather dicey spot, though this seems to be the running theme with Telltale. My experiences with “Back to the Future: The Game” and “The Walking Dead: Season One” ended up much the same way…that is, I was chewing on my fingernails vigorously in between episodes because I couldn’t wait to see what happened next. It’s worth noting that this article will contain spoilers, so do NOT read further if you plan to play the game in the near future. If you haven’t played Season One by now, then may whatever gods you believe in have mercy on your soul…you don’t know what you’re missing!
Like “Scrabble”? How about “Dominoes”? If you said yes to either question, then you may want to pay attention as “Double Double Dominoes” is a blending of both games. Players will be tasked with placing their dominoes in “Domino” fashion on a game board reminiscent of “Scrabble”. Placing dominoes on point squares will net you a path up the victory point track, though you may also inadvertently cause your opponents to do the same…more on that later. Before we dive into this particular game, I’d like to thank both Ray Wehrs and Cassidy Werner from Calliope Games for providing me with a free press copy. Calliope Games are the same people who brought you “Tsuro“, “Tsuro of the Seas“, “Roll For It!“, “Got ‘Em!“, and “Ugh!“, for those of you who recognize the name.
Sometimes it pains me to only have one brain and ten fingers…there are just so many great “Early Access” games out there with tons of potential. Like the previous articles in this series, this is a quick look at the games I’ve been gifted via their respective developers. All of them are currently in an Alpha or Beta state (as of today’s posting), so this is less of an official review and more of a quick look at what they currently have to offer in their present state. Enjoy!
“Ugh!”, as best as I can describe it, is a press-you-luck set-making game with a caveman theme…I’ll give you a few seconds to process that. It’s not as complicated as it sounds, though it does offer players some interesting choices. Before we get into all of that though, I’d like to thank both Ray Wehrs and Cassidy Werner from Calliope Games for providing me with a free press copy. If the names sound familiar, it’s because Calliope Games are the same folks who brought you “Tsuro“, “Tsuro of the Seas“, “Roll For It!“, and the more recent “Got ‘Em!“.
I’ve been following “Yushino” ever since it was successfully funded through Kickstarter in September of 2013. In short, it’s “Scrabble” but with numbers. This crossword game will likewise test your math and number recognition skills as opposed to your spelling abilities. Originally, the developers wanted to name this game “Enable the Numbers”, but instead opted for a shorter name. Having used “Google Translate”, they came up with “Sūji o shiyō kanō ni” and took parts of it to come up with “Yushino”. I admittedly don’t speak Japanese, but the name is catchy enough. Before we get started, I’d like to thank Yiannis Tsiounis, the Founder & CEO of “Yushino”, for providing me with a free press copy.
Four different factions? The ability to customize each faction with units of your choosing? A customizable battlefield that offers a unique experience each time you play? Where do I sign up? “FACTIONS”, a game currently seeking your help on Kickstarter, promises all of these things and more. It’s like “Stratego”, but on seven different types of steroids. Your goal? Manuever your armies to capture key victory points on the battlefield all the while taking the battle to your opponent. Each faction/unit has unique abilities that will keep things fresh and exciting.
Wow, another DGA Early Access Corner article…these games just keep coming! Like the previous articles in this series, this is a quick look at the games I’ve been gifted via their respective developers. All of them are currently in an Alpha or Beta state (as of today’s posting), so this is less of an official review and more of a quick look at what they currently have to offer in their present state. Enjoy!
Elimination games can be hard to play with others sometimes, depending on the group. Those who hate losing or always feel like they’re being ganged up on can ruin the entire experience for everyone else. “Tsuro” is one of those rare games that my household will play on a regular basis, despite the fact that winning involves being the last one on the board. I think it has to do with the fact that you’re limited to placing tiles adjacent to your own pawn…if others happen to be affected by it, all the better. There’s a little of that in “Got ‘Em” as well, though it does tend to be a bit more aggressive. Before we take a brief look at what this game has to offer, I’d like to thank both Ray Wehrs and Cassidy Werner from Calliope Games for providing me with a free press copy. If the names sound familiar, it’s because Calliope Games are the same folks who created “Tsuro“, “Tsuro of the Seas“, and “Roll For It!“.
Steam’s Summer Sale has been both a boon and a curse in that my Steam library is practically exploding at the seams while my wallet is crying for me to fill it back up again. Normally I’d hold off on reviewing games I’ve personally bought in favor of those games I received for free from their respective developers, but this one was too different to pass up. This game, as best as I can describe it, is a twenty-minute murder mystery that you’ll be trying hard to solve. As the detective, it’ll be your job to visit locations, gather clues, and arrest the culprit before the time limit expires. If you made “Clue” into a single player video game (which has been done before) and added pixel art and a noir setting, you’d get “Noir Syndrome”.
Hi there and welcome to another edition of DGA’s Early Access Corner, a place where I take a quick look at what I’ve been playing as of late. Like my previous article, all of the games featured here were both gifted to me by their respective developers and are currently in an Alpha or Beta state. As such, the below content does not serve as any sort of review…though I do provide my personal thoughts as to whether or not they are worth buying into in their present state. Happy gaming!
The “Roller Coaster Tycoon” and “Zoo Tycoon” series always have a special place on my hard drive, but let’s face it, they are showing their age. For the last five years, I’ve been itching for a modern-day game of either caliber…though most games that have tried to be as in-depth and expansive fell short. That leads me to “Zoo Park”, a game that recently released on Steam (as of 6/13/14). It advertises that the user will have the ability to “care for over 40 different animals from all four corners of the Earth whilst running a professional programme of rescue, rehabilitation, research and conservation”, but is it any fun and does it live up to standards that “RCT” and “ZT” have created from years past? Before we get started, I’d like to thank Richard Barclay from Excalibur Publishing, LLC. for providing me with a free press copy.
There are a TON of trick-taking games out there…but seriously, how many of them feature dragons? “THE DRAGON GAMES”, a family-friendly trick-taking card game that will be launching on Kickstarter on or around 6/28/14, has them in “Spades” (pardon the reference). In this variant, players will assume the role of an actual playing piece, unlike most card games of the genre. By winning tricks, you’ll be able to advance your pawn further up the playing board. The first player to reach the end of the path, wins! Before we take a brief look at what this game has to offer, I’d like to thank Carl Hansen and Rebecca Smith from Dream Options Inc. for reaching out and providing me with a prototype copy. It’s important to stress that prototypes are not often reflective of the final product, making everything featured in this article (including the rules) subject to change. The symbols on the dice, for example, will be a bit more clear in the final version.
Listen up, you trick-taking card game fans! “THE DRAGON GAMES”, a family-friendly card game reminiscent of “Spades” and “Clubs”, will be launching on Kickstarter on June 28th, 2014. As the name implies, this isn’t your standard run-of-the-mill trick-taking game. While it does use terms like “trump” and “trick” regularly, it features a game board, an action card deck, and of course, plenty of dragons! Winning tricks will nudge your character along the board, but you’ll need to pay attention to the colored spaces and the suits being played to get ahead of the others. A written and video preview are in the works for those of you wanting to learn more, so stay tuned for more content as it’s released.
I’d like to preface this article with a tidbit about myself: I’m a perfectionist. As a kid, I’d often reload saves constantly when I didn’t complete a level just so, perhaps some of you can relate? Anyway, I had to really fight the urge to do so again when I played “Xenonauts” for the first time. This game is punishingly difficult, but there’s a reason for that . “Xenonauts”, just to give you a little back story, started development back in 2009 and later sought funding through Kickstarter in 2012. Promising to recapture the thrills of the original “UFO: Enemy Unknown” (a.k.a. “X-COM: UFO Defense” and “X-COM: Enemy Unknown”) from 1994, “Xenonauts” tripled its funding goals and officially released in June, 2014. The question remains, is “Xenonauts” worth your time and money? Before I answer that, I’d like to thank Chris England from Goldhawk Interactive for providing me with a free press copy.
Now I know why games journalists sometimes hate their jobs. The sheer number of games out on the market always seem to be increasing, what with the recent rise of Indie developers over the past couple of years and Steam’s Early Access program. I used to be able to write reviews and previews for every game I featured on my YouTube channel, but no longer. Either I’m getting older and slower, or DGA is growing beyond the scope for one man to handle. Perhaps a little of both? At any rate, I wanted to quickly hi-lite some of the games I’ve been playing that have not yet reached final production quality…meaning Alphas & Betas. The following are games that I’ve been gifted by their respective developers and I’ve already covered on my YouTube channel, but haven’t here. It’s worth stressing that all of these games, as of 6/17/14, are not finished. Therefore, I’ll simply be reporting on whether or not I think they are worth playing at the present time.
After recently publishing my controversial review of “Age of Mythology: Extended Edition“, I was somewhat surprised to see Skybox Labs and Microsoft Studios at it again…by “it” I mean the revitalization of another RTS classic, “Rise of Nations” (originally released in 2003). Just to give you a bit of back story, I played “Rise of Nations” and its expansion “Thrones and Patriots” religiously back in the day…moreso than “Age of Mythology”, if you can believe it. My brother and I would spend hours playing co-op against the AI, simultaneously bringing our forces out of the stone age whilst creating a sizable force to take out the enemy. Oh, those were the good old days. Before I get into the beast that is “Rise of Nations: Extended Edition”, I’d like to thank Ashton Williams, a Marketing Coordinator at Microsoft Studios, for providing me with a free press copy.