“These waters are greedy. They will never give back what they have taken.” This is quote that, by itself, is innocent enough. However, when uttered at the right time and place, it becomes a brief glimpse into the bleak history of DisHonored‘s Dunwall city. The quote belongs not to a person, but a gift; something precious given to our character to “assist” him on his mission to right a most horrible wrong. It is “the Heart”, and it is probably the single best storytelling device produced by modern video gaming. Continue reading Have a Heart!
Image gathered Tarsier Studios’ Hunger press kit
Earlier this week, as I was checking through my usual internet haunts, I happened across the first teaser for a new indie game; a called Hunger. …In fact, before I say anymore here’s that teaser. Just watch it. Right now.
The game’s developer, Tarsier Studios, describes the game as an “adventure-suspense” game on it’s official page. I’ve never heard of the genre before, in fact I’m willing to be that it didn’t exist before Hunger, but hearing it described that way definitely makes sense based on what’s shown in the teaser. From what I’ve seen of the response so far, many are making comparisons to LIMBO and Little Big Planet and I can definitely see why. The perspective and visuals definitely resemble LBP while the dark tone is very reminiscent of LIMBO, but this strikes me as more than a simple combination of those games. This definitely doesn’t look like a simple mash-up of platforming and heavy atmosphere. No it looks like it’s going to shape up to be something…else.
What I’m seeing shown in this teaser is definitely a horror game, just not the sort we’ve gotten used to over the last several years. For the longest time now, horror has meant getting in the player’s face. It’s meant jump-scares, blood and gore, mangled abominations, and always from a first-person or over-the-shoulder perspective. They’re either shooters or stealth-based, with observation/concentration games like Five Nights at Freddy’s being more of an exception than a rule. So it’s definitely a surprise to see a horror game based around exploring and puzzle-solving (with what looks like some occasional hiding).
This teaser is really only first taste of a game that is still early in development according to its page on Tarsier’s site, but if the final game is anything close to the kind of experience this teaser is hinting at, then I think all of us horror game fans will be in for a treat. In the meantime though, we wait.
What were your impressions of Hunger? What sort of game do you think it will shape up to be?
A couple days ago, an announcement hit the airwaves that the highly-anticipated Batman: Arkham Knight is going to be rated “M” for mature. (Rocksteady’s previous Batman games, Arkham Asylum and Arkham City, as well as WB Games Montreal’s Arkham Origins, were all rated “T” for teen.) In an interview with IGN, Rocksteady’s founder and Arkham Knight Director Sefton Hill noted some surprise about the rating. But he also pointed out that though Arkham Knight is “dark” and contains “bad stuff,” it will be the game the company wants to deliver to players. Responses to this seem to have mostly ranged from “Way to go Rocksteady for sticking to your principles!” to “So?” As for me, I’m just looking forward to playing it.
My opinion of Mirror’s Edge has been in a state of flux ever since I first played the game back in 2008. I loved it initially, eventually bought into the endless online criticism of the game and became a critic of the game myself for the last 5 years. ‘It wasn’t actually good,” I concluded. “I was just dazzled by the unusual game play and art style,” I thought. Well thank goodness for the annual summer slump of game releases, because after 5 years of disliking it I finally returned to Mirror’s Edge, and found that it was just as fun as I thought it was back in the beginning! It has room to grow, but experiment wasn’t a failure; first-person traversal can work as a core mechanic! And if the E3 trailer (below) is anything to go by it looks like DICE is taking that to heart and doing everything they can to make it into the game they always wanted it to be. A promising as it all sounds, I’m hoping they’ll expand on some other things as well.