Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Game Art: Manuel Kilger

Hailing from Germany, Manuel Kilger is a digital artist that has created a wide range of fun and vibrant artworks, reflecting games, fantasy, popular TV shows and more. 

Looking through his gallery has been a treat, so I have posted a few of my favourite game-inspired artworks below. (Click to enlarge)

Please be sure to visit his gallery to look at the rest! 

Dead Space

Old Link (The Legend of Zelda)

Samus (Metroid)

Got any great game artwork of your own to share? Please feel free to get in touch! 

Friday, 21 March 2014

New 8-Bit Girl Art Incoming!

It has been a while since I have properly posted (thanks to my buddy Anna for helping me out in the past few days!). 

As I am raring to start again, I figured I should probably give the blog an overall update too. This is why I enlisted the help of Lewis Terry of Twin Sword Trading once more to create a new banner image and images for the page. You may also notice that his art will pop up in the odd post or two, as he has kindly agreed to draw some art for specific posts when they are created.

The new banner, logo, are still very much a work in progress, and seeing as each digital painting takes Lewis around 3-6 hours to fully complete, so it may be a short while before it is uploaded here on the blog. But...it'll be here soon!

In the meantime, I am intending to release artwork as it is completed. These will be making up the overall banner when it is finished. 

I wanted to include my favourite gaming characters into the banner, like last time. Lewis' art has progressed so far since he last created artwork for my blog and linked social networks, as you will see below.

So here are the first two pieces-Cole Phelps from L.A. Noire and Bigby from The Wolf Among Us. 

Like these? Please support Lewis by checking out his blog, following him on Facebook, deviantART, Twitter and/or Tumblr.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Nintendo Goes Bananas

Nintendo of Canada recently revealed how many bananas were frozen as part of its Banana Mania Contest.  A grand total of 4,835 bananas were inside a frozen black of ice.  This was all done as part of a PR attempt to promote the new game, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.  The game was launched back on the 21st of Febuary.  

The important part of this oddball story is that all the bananas were donated to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society, which feeds over 28,000 people on a weekly basis.

Review: Warface Closed Beta

Warface by LD Terry
Recently I finally received my code to play Warface's closed Beta online.  Having not played the last Call of Duty or any other FPS in some time I was very keen to get on it.  After two days of errors I finally got onto the game yesterday.

So long as you have an Xbox Gold membership then Warface is free to play.  Like with all free to play games, there will be an underlying currency in which you can invest in order to gain the advantage.  In Warface the currency allows you to purchase items for a limited time or permanently instead of saving up the standard game currency.  Each peice of equipment gives you the advantage over your comrades, more bullet resistance, immunity to one headshot per match, improve speed, mine detection and the list goes on.  You can also pay to instantly re-spawn and to have all of your experience boosted for a time.

In Russia Warface did well on the PC, but whether or not it will take the console market by storm is to be seen.  World of Tanks is the only other free to play game on the Xbox360 so far, these games will lead the way in terms of the future of console and online gaming.  Will it stick and become the future or will it slowly fizzle out?  Only time will tell.

Warface is an enjoyable experience, it is far less flexible than Call of Duty, but the customisation is there it just isn't as rich and you can choose to buy upgrades instead of grinding up to earn them.  The graphics and physics are not up to the standard of standard FPS games that we are used to on the consoles.  The rag-doll physics at sometimes can look totally ridiculous (get a shotgun and you will see what I mean.)  

The entire game feels much more arcady than other online FPS console titles.  The co-op is a fast paced series of missions vs AI opponents.  Three of the missions cycle daily offering a new challenge and experience, while the versus mode offers 8 on 8 combat in a variety of modes.

For now I am having my fun on Warface, but when it comes out of Beta I am not sure if I will stick at it.  The prospect of losing all of what I have earnt is somewhat crushing, but then that will have to happen as the purchasable currency is currently free.  To not re-set the player progress would break it on release.

It will never be Call of Duty but it will certainly be interesting to see how the game adapts and changes as people join it and it is released into the big wide world.  With player skins, weapons and maps being released continuously it could be a far richer experience than any console title could offer.  You won't have to buy a new game to get a better experience if the old one keeps updating and throwing new glorious content and incentives.

I think free to play could be the way of the future.  World of Tanks has me hooked but then that is for another article.  If you can get on the Beta for Warface certainly try it, so long as you are already a XBL Gold membership user you have nothing to lose.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Review: Chainsaw Warrior iOS

A few months ago a friend was raving about the release of Chainsaw Warrior on the iOS marketplace.  I then found out that Chainsaw Warrior was a boardgame released back in 1987 by Games Workshop.  In it you play America's last hope of salvation, a highly skilled chainsaw-wielding, square jawed hero.  There is a deadly threat known only as Darkness attempting to destroy New York and you are the only one that can save the city from annihilation.

Not only do you have to face off against all forms of horror but you have to do it all within the hour.  The clock is ticking and the city depends on you.

Having now played the original game as well as the iOS version I can say that the iOS experience is the same as the board game, only a bit faster as you do not have to shuffle cards and move counters.  The boardgame comes with a comic that introduces the plot, the iOS version has stuck with this and plays an animated comic before you enter the game (Rather frustratingly every time you play it.).

Everything you encounter is represented through the games card art and the combat, initial set up and all other forms of results are worked out by a roll of the dice on screen.  Every game you get a different set up, on easy you get to pick your equipment but in normal and hard (classic) modes you get random equipment depending on what you select - hand-to-hand, devices, gun, etc.

Being an older game there is a truck-load of luck in your fate.  Often you will die suddenly and seemingly unfairly, however it is this difficulty that makes it addictive.  The game is incredibly difficult to win and it is very satisfying when you get there.   Once you figure out various strategies and tactics the games does get easier.  You will find the rope-launcher to be pretty essential and know that the Slime, Meat Machine, Lunatic, the Chasm, Radiation Cannister and Darkness himself are all to be feared.

Compared to other iOS games it does take some time, anywhere between 5-20 minuets.  Before you even stand a hope of winning and finding Darkness, you have to get through the first deck of 54 cards.  It is a task and most of the time you will not make it that far.

The only disappointment I have with the game is that there is nothing extra.  If there was a new patch or content update it would be even better, it just seems like a missed opportunity.  This experience certainly is not for everyone, but if zombies and dice rolling are your thing then you will be at home with chainsaw warrior.  I am still enjoying it and I have played it over 30 times I think it is worth the investment, even if just to try out.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Review: Talisman Digital Edition

Talisman Digital Edition is a faithful recreation of the classic board-game by Games Workshop.  A sprawling fantasy epic that relied on very basic game play mechanics and a fistful of luck in order to create a light but punishing gaming experience.  Talisman was perfect back in the day, as it allowed families and gamers to access the world of fantasy without having to get deep into a role-play group and spend hours a week playing through a campaign.

It is important to remember that Talisman existed long before the game mechanics of more modern Eurogames, in comparison this experience is a little cludgy and luck driven, potentially taking over 4 hours to finish one game.

As someone who had played Talisman and had fond memories of the original I was keen to play it when I was given a copy.  Whilst to most I am sure the graphics are a bit bland, to me they reminded me of what the classic game looked like along with the miniatures that are used to represent the characters in the game.  On first impressions I found the screen to be somewhat cluttered.  A lot of the icons and logos I found to small and the text at time a bit hard to read.

There is no animation in the game for combat or even movement.  The pieces all slide around the board and cards are zoomed in on and then effects resolved.  A little effect here and there would have added some much needed life to the game experience.  This in combination with the sheer amount of clicking you have to do in your turn, transforms what should be a fairly relaxing experience into something rather dull and at times tedious.

Talisman Digital Edition does what it states, it is a digital version of a classic game.  Unless you are keen on old school boardgaming or a hardcore fan of the original, I feel that this is a dated and old experience that will not grab the attention of any non-board gamers or younger gamers.

My first game took me 3 hours 20 and my second even longer.  Perhaps if the game was more engaging and moved at a faster pace it would have kept me entertained, but the fond memories of Talisman from my childhood were thrown into a bland reality when I realised how much gaming has changed over the years.

If you are new to board-gaming or want to try something new there are plenty games out there that will provide you with a more engaging and fun experience.  Unless you have countless hours to put into clicking and sheer luck, I would steer clear of Talisman Digital Edition.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Immaturity in Animal Crossing: New Leaf

A quick glance at Tumblr and its clear that plenty of us like to be a little immature on Animal Crossing: New Leaf from time to time.

Here's my immature moments. Sorry to anyone who is offended by this!

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