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Video Game Nostalgia

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You may have heard about Destructive Creations’ latest announcement on their abhorrent game titled Hatred (the title font is stylized after the DOOM logo for added originality). This project crosses the line that some games have tread closely like Postal by Running With Scissors, and Manhunt by Rockstar Games. However it goes beyond that. The developer tries desperately to be edgy:
“The question you may ask is: why do they do this? These days, when a lot of games are heading to be polite, colorful, politically correct and trying to be some kind of higher art, rather than just an entertainment – we wanted to create something against trends. Something different, something that could give the player a pure, gaming pleasure. ”

This game is so disturbed, Epic Games literally requested that they remove the Unreal logo from their trailer as they want no association with the project. An unfortunate reality as the developer chose to build the game on Unreal Engine 4.

In a time where we’re pushing to use the industry as a vehicle for bringing on a new way of thinking and possibly changing the world, it’s sad that a project like this has been unveiled to devolve our efforts.

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I just fixed that crafting screen. A beautiful procedurally generated Proven Lands by day, by night, with inventory and skills screen ;) KS soon

Check out this upcoming title before the kickstarter drops! Proven Lands is procedurally generated roguelike sci-fi planned to be released on PC next year. Follow Rafael from the reblog or their dev log here for more updates! Their game site is here as well.
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Elegy for a Dead World

Boston-based developer Dejobaan games’ latest title is up on Kickstarter and nearing the end of their pledge period. The game puts you in an alien environment as a member of an exploration team sent by Earth to document these uncharted planets. The thing is though, you’re the only one who survived. Now you’re stuck traversing this strange and beautiful world on your own, writing about the things you see. The game features an input mechanic where you type out your interpretations of what you see. The art alone is attractive, but the overall atmosphere accentuates the endearing opportunity to document your findings. It’s an archaeologist’s dream come true, if you’re the type of archaeologist who longs to explore planets of dead alien civilizations.

A truly unique gift is being offered to us and the crowdfunding is coming to a close soon. It would be a shame not to see this project come to life, and give us something to talk about together.

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The Vanishing of Ethan Carter

Making waves almost instantly, is the debut game for game developer The Astronauts. We’ve posted when the game was announced however even before then I’ve been around the inner circle on Linkedin on the game developers group participating in some important discussions on the video game industry and our approach to game development, getting a good look at the approach to the development. Here, we have a game that’s been developed by an incredible group of people. There are no tutorials or breaking of the 4th wall to shepherd you through. You feel the story come to life before you.

As you know, you play as Detective Paul Prospero, looking for a boy who wrote you a disturbing letter that hinted that his life may be in danger. Ethan is already missing when you arrive in the gorgeous Red Creek Valley. To say much more would spoil this moody experience, so we’ll stop at that.

I wanted to shine the spotlight on this title because I believe this team is on point with their approach to game design. This point is made evident if you read any of Mr. Adrian Chmielarz’s articles, particularly this one, a crucial piece in my professional opinion. We are starting to see a lot of indie developers coming to a consensus that there are too many games out there that hold your hand and basically drag you through the game. That’s not only frustrating and annoying, but also an insult to our intelligence. Visual and audible cues are prominently used in many indie titles, and are more than effective enough to get the player acquainted with the game. At times it can be irritating without a literal sign that says “GO THIS WAY” but the reward lies within the accomplishment itself and the chance to take in the game atmosphere.

We play games for many, many reasons. However one of the things we love the most is the escapism. We are literally taken out of our realities and dropped into a new one where we can do whatever we want. Developers like The Astronauts understand the importance of game atmosphere. And hopefully we see more titles that focus on that in the near future.