Last week Alex M and I (Rob) hit the Rezzed show floor to play and talk about games. You may have come across some of our Rezzed articles on this here blog over the past week. We are now rounding off our Rezzed coverage with this final article highlighting the other games we played on the show floor!
If you don’t know what Gang Beasts is, imagine someone making jelly babies fight while you cackle and roll around laughing. That’s basically it.
It’s come a long way since the free version that got downloaded a tonne of times a few years ago, it’s well on its way to becoming a platform by itself. I spoke to James Brown from developers Boneloaf and he mentioned that this was the eventual plan for the game, for it not only to be a hilarious multiplayer brawler, but also a platform for mods, for sandbox exploration levels, for much more than it currently is!
One of the most exciting features it has is that you can combine 8 players in order to play together, up to 4 can be in the same room, and the rest can be online. Or you can have 2 in one room and 6 online. Or 3 in a room and 5 online. Go crazy! It means you can have that sweet local gaming action combined with your friends that aren’t quite so close.
The core of the game hasn’t changed too much though, it’s a procedurally animated brawler that simply offers some of the most fun you can have. James let me know that there was a simple test for them when showing it at conventions; if you can hear laughter, you know you’re doing it right.
8 Bit Armies
Command and Conquer is undeniably a classic. If you don’t think so then well, scroll on. We don’t want you here in this retro-C&C-loving section.
Right now the losers have scrolled on, let’s talk strategy.
8 Bit Armies is a beautiful game that definitely recaptures some of that old-school C&C action. Build your base, gather resources, and recruit an army to go and give your opponent a good old fashioned thrashing.
The 8 Bit side of it comes from the art style, it uses a blocky approach but one that maintains a whole load of detail. It really feels like you’re bashing around armies made of LEGO, except LEGO that moves and kills other LEGO.
The best thing though, and this is a bit boring but it’s true, is the control scheme. You build your units by assigning them to controller buttons, which you can then switch between on the fly. Real time strategy games always feel better with a mouse, until now. This really feels good to control, and we can’t wait to see what’s next for 8 Bit Armies.
Knights and Bikes
A hark back to to most (if not all) people’s childhoods. Knights and Bikes is a co-op adventure set in Cornwall where players control of Nessa and Demelza as they explore the isle of Penfurzy and let their childhood imaginations come to life (literally).
We had great fun playing this game, the hand painted graphics are wonderful. Foam Sword have really taken the time over the finer details of the game. For example, you know how kids find value in anything? Whether it be a random toy, or an item that most grownups will see as junk. This is what makes up the currency in Knights and Bikes.
The gameplay is pretty straightforward but works really well with the setting. Players are able to combine moves with their partner in order to make super moves, for example Nessa can throw water bombs and Demelza is able to jump in the puddles they leave in order to make a big splash attack. It’s a great game mechanic which levels the playing field for both characters.
All in all we had a great time playing Knights and Bike and we are looking forward to the full release of the game next year for PC and PlayStation 4.
King Under The Mountain
I want to play Dwarf Fortress, I really do. I read the stories that come out of it and I think, that could be me, that could be my dwarves.
Then I look up a ‘beginner’s how to play’ manual and it’s 8371 pages long.
King Under the Mountain, which has recently started a Kickstarter campaign, feels very Dwarf-Fortress-y, but I was able to sit down and play it within moments. There’s not much to it yet, you can mine and dig out tunnels, you can construct some basic furniture items, and you can define zones that will become areas for your buildings, a bit similar to how Sim City or Cities: Skylines works.
That said, you can just feel the promise of this. The world’s surely crying out for a game like Dwarf Fortress that’s also a bit easier to get into, but still has some comparable depth. The art style is basic but beautiful, and I had a great time turning my villages into tunnel-dwelling-troglodytes. Shun the sun say I, shun the sun!
One of the pleasures of things like Rezzed is getting to see games like this, games that are just starting out on their journey to becoming realised and finished things, and I’m definitely excited to see what comes out of King Under the Mountain next.
MetaMorph: Dungeon Creatures
Have you ever wanted a game like Diablo where you could switch up to three characters on the fly? Then MetaMorph: Dungeon Creatures is the game for you!
This new title by FireFly Studios (Of Stronghold fame) is a nice break from their strategy game comfort zone. Players take control of three different characters as they explore dungeons and hack their way to the final goal. We got to play as the Ice Ogre, the Fire Nymph and the Rabbit (The Rabbit wields 2 swords so he is useful, honest!) as we battled our way through hordes of the undead and tackled some puzzles and time trials.
Each character has their own special moves which comes in handy should you want to mix things up a bit. It was especially handy when it came to the dungeon’s boss. Using a mix of fire, ice and swords really helped taking this boss down. Also we died against the boss a fair few times, but even that didn’t stop us.
So that’s it for a Rezzed coverage this year. Bring on EGX in September!