How do chaps and chapettes,
on this weeks show Crinbot, The Quim Ninja and myself discuss all kinds of gaming stuff including;
and this weeks indie game is the delightfully strange “Oscar“.
enjoy, like, subscribe, comment etc
How do chaps and chapettes,
on this weeks show Crinbot, The Quim Ninja and myself discuss all kinds of gaming stuff including;
and this weeks indie game is the delightfully strange “Oscar“.
enjoy, like, subscribe, comment etc
TBoD are back in full force albeit a little worse for ware on The Quim Ninjas birthday weekend. Get yourself settled like we did to record this one, it’s really best listened to whilst reclined.
As always thanks for listening, hit us up in the comments or on facebook, twitter, itunes etc.
Welcome back for episode 70. We have super special guest BadMotherLicker joining us in Crinbots absence this week you can find Licker on @ on twitter. He joins in the fun to chat with us about;
And much more.
‘sup baggers, we’re back apologies for the delay but we do have a rather special show for you today.
This week we’re talking Destiny and all Destiny.
Sit back relax and have a listen to our impressions from the beta.
Apologies for the delay this week, I am useless.
This week we cover;
A few listener questions and,
and our ‘we called the dog….’ section covers the gorgeous ‘Long Dark’
Crinbot was once again absent so no song …. sorry.
We’re short a member again this week, Crinbot’s absence means we have no song either so apologies for that. We do have the usual content for your listening pleasure so without further ado the stuff we cover;
as always thanks for listening and com-like-a-scribe.
Undead labs were kind enough to provide us with a steam key for the latest DLC for the epic Zombie survival game State of Decay, I threw together a quick review featuring gameplay footage from my playthough of the game.
Check it out here or over on our YouTube channel.
Special thanks to The Wach for helping us to secure this review copy.
We’re back again to talk the latest gaming news.
This week: starting out with the XBone Zone, we look at the unbundling of Kinect, as well as the Netflix and Hulu Gold requirement being lifted, and Games with Gold – officially no longer shit! Moving on, we talk new Halo news.
Our Indie game this week is beautiful looking The Forest, go check it out.
Well met adventurers!,
We have a veritable feast in store for you this week.
In this show we cover: an addition for Naughty Dog following their recent departures; could Titanfall be coming to PS4?; Steven Spielberg’s Halo series may not be as exclusive as we once thought; we get a bit weighty with our thoughts on sexism in gaming and society, thanks to this article; the obligatory Destiny circle-jerk continues, and further; plus, an exciting reveal from Sony on the real purpose of the DS4’s lightbar.
Our indie game this week is Stoked!, currently on Kickstarter. Head over and give it a look.
We also talk about an indie game called Chip from game developer not far from us, it’s a cool puzzler its on Steam/iOS/Android now!
Howdy chaps and chapesses,
Here we are again. Another week older, but probably not any wiser; you be the judge.
This week we talk:
XBONE price drops
Virtuix Omni secures funding
Playstation Plus free games for May
New Watch Dogs gameplay video
Civilization: Beyond Earth – wowzers…
Four player narrative coop announced for AC: Unity
Minecraft real-world application awesomeness
Our Indie game this week was Franchise Hockey Manager (chosen by Crinbot, obviously)
We’re back again for another week of epic gaming lolz. This week:
Continued nonsense from Call of Doody.
Nice words from a Titanfall dev.
And the PS4 gets a long-overdue update.
Howdy chaps and chapesses,
TBoD return the normal schedule this week with more news from the gamesphere from the past 7 days or so.
We firstly bash Xbox for erroneous reasons; the Game with Gold this month is indeed Hitman: Absolution. Apologies to Microsoft…
We touch on our thoughts around the more broad points from Gagnon30’s recent post.
Amazon Fire TV, among others
The indie game this week is the truly excellent Gang Beasts
The crew reunite after a split to take in the sights and “experiences” of Amsterdam to talk through the latest news in gaming.
This week, we couldn’t really talk about anything other than the Facebook/Oculus union.
Hello Tea Pots,
Welcome to another freshly poured cup of the Teabag or Die podcast. This week the boys discuss;
TLoU movie (again),
and this weeks “we called the dog…” title is ‘This is my War‘
have a deeks, let us know what you think and keep in touch in all the usual ways.
TBoD is back. After a week off due to illness (both mental and physical) and a celebration of new life we have returned for your listening (dis) pleasure. We do our best to catch up on two weeks worth of exciting gaming news including;
Evolve – a 4vs1 shooter from the team behind the awesome L4D,
BF4 – Resuming the stream of DLC coming out from Dice/EA and the implications on the buggy game itself,
Uncharted territory for Seth Gordon, the front runner to bring Drakes adventures to the big screen,
Titanfall – We couldn’t ignore the Xbox/PC exclusive this week of all weeks,
Sonic Boom - The return of the blue blur with a new look,
Destiny – Is the pressure going to get to Bungie as Activision/Blizzard announce expectations,
Elder Scrolls Online – Cause we can.
As always we have our regular segment “we called the dog…” in which eremenko talks about SpaceBase df-9
As always likecomscribe, hit us up on twitter, facebook etc keep an eye out for our streams and stay safe kids.
A Klaus Call <—– right click and choose save as to download
Welcome to another edition of the TBoD podcast.
Hot off the press, onto our lips, and into your ears this week::
Nintendo boss halves salary.
Elder Scrolls Online will not require PS+.
EA ruin some more stuff.
Octodad gets even more hilariously ridiculous?
Wolf Among Us episode 2 teaser released.
Our indie game is The Vanishing of Ethan Carter; a beautiful-looking Horror Fiction.
Enjoy and leave a comment if you like.
The whole crew is back this week to go through the latest gaming news, along with our views and opinions.
This week, we discuss:
Sony announcement – what could it be?
The solution to gamer rage?
Medieval fantasy epic, Kingdom Come Deliverance
Banished release date confirmed
Assassin’s Creed future settings
Lastly, we discuss some copyright issues around last week’s indie game, the Banner Saga
Enjoy and leave a comment if you like.
Another weekly digest of gaming news, views, and the inevitable tangents you all love us for.
This week we talk about:
Rust and DayZ – sources http://playrust.com/intro-video/, http://www.incgamers.com/2014/01/facepunch-knocked-out-by-rust-sales-figures, and http://kotaku.com/dayz-or-rust-which-players-are-friendlier-1501109843?utm_campaign=Socialflow_Kotaku_Twitter&utm_source=Kotaku_Twitter&utm_medium=Socialflow
Xbox One features in action – http://kotaku.com/the-xbox-one-can-do-a-lot-more-than-you-might-think-1501411519
The return of Shooter’s Corner – Evolve – http://uk.ign.com/articles/2014/01/07/evolve-first-gameplay-and-multiplayer-class-details-revealed
Happy Ne Year Teabaggers!
We ring in 2014 with a new podcast for your delectation.
We talk about all kinds, from games for the Occulus Rift and Sony’s counterpart and similar technologies that track eye movement inbound this year. We also talk about the free games coming to your Xbox’s and PlayStation’s in January
We also discuss the latest audacious project from the Skyrim modding community and our indie game of the week is a Survival RTS called Banished which has us all worked up.
Enjoy and best wishes for the New Year!
We’re back from our stint in the capital at Eurogamer expo and feeling a little worse for wear. Hopefully this isn’t immediately obvious as we discuss some of the latest gaming news including;
Valves latest announcements,
Battlefield 4’s Beta launch,
Quims console conundrum,
GTA onlines teething problems and what little of it we have played,
If you enjoy the show leave a comment or rate the post, any reviews on iTunes would also be greatly appreciated.
Video games have always struggled to strike the right balance between the size of the game world and the detail poured into said world, this dilemma is something that has become easier and easier to dodge as our gaming machines have become more and more powerful. Creating a living breathing world is an incredible achievement and those few who manage it are revered like Gods in the gaming world and much like it’s immortal counterpart this idea seems to never die.
For me this idea of exploring a world at your own will began with early RPG titles. While not necessarily “Open world” games, titles like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest and Breath of Fire gave gamers an early opportunity to navigate an entire world in the however they wished and while some of these games may have changed tactics in recent iterations other developers have taken the idea and made it their own.
Grand Theft Auto (1997) though simple in it’s execution was huge in scope and allowed players to travel through three large cities however they felt necessary. Many others have challenged Rockstars crown as the Kings of the open world title but the Edinburgh based production house remain firmly planted upon their very own iron throne. This isn’t to say that one of to days most admired titles has had it all it’s own way, nor is true to say they haven’t taken a few hints along the way.
The Humble beginnings of a world beater
Shenmue (1999) is widely regarded to be the first title to be set in a completely open 3d city which featured a “living” populace offering players un-rivaled freedom to interact with the world around them. This was a huge step in the video game world and Segas contribution cannot be ignored although it may have been somewhat overshadowed by what was to come.
Is this the real life …. or is this just fantasy
Rockstar as ever unwilling to relinquish their grip on the open world genre would soon after release GTA III, the first game in the series to feature a fully 3d sandbox city in which the player was free to cause as much mayhem as they wished, it was an insane achievement. Sega did not want to give up the fight though and they struck back with their own crime based open world title Yakuza and all the while PC gamers were gifted with The Elder Scrolls series which is undoubtedly the most important game in the “open world first person” sub-genre.
All of these titles featured impressively sized game worlds be it a city, county/state, island and in some cases even a country but in 2004 Blizzard came and stole all the accolades by creating a game that encompassed an entire world to be explored by you and millions of others in the most acclaimed MMORPG of them all. What WoW did affected and continues to effect everything that came and will come, despite recent drops in revenue this game will forever be regarded as a gift and a curse by gamers across the world. Then there’s the small matter of a little game you may of heard of called Minecraft the founder of the proceduraly generated unlimited world, MC once again changed our perspective of just how much of a sandbox a game can be and it’s popularity continues to soar, this kind of dynamic world and changing environment could be seen the epitome of the genre.
This place is your life now!
Most games these days don’t shy away from creating an experience that can be shared with a friend, even games that are traditionally a solo experience are beginning to see the value in multiplayer, after all a game like any other form of entertainment is at it’s best when you are sharing it with a friend or two .. or more. Forthcoming titles such as Destiny, The Division and The Crew have shifted ideals from being about multi-player or open world and instead look to focus on creating a persistent shared world which can be occupied by thousands upon thousands of players. This idea is one still very much in it’s infancy but it’s something that we all as gamers are becoming more and more intrigued by with every passing day. Combining the elements of open world play with the full on living world experience is a salivating concept for everyone. Add in to that the ability to meet strangers along the way, those who may wish to join you or those who definitely wish to kill you (and steal your beans) and you have a frighteningly appealing genre that might just mean the end of the real world for good.
Is the MMO the ultimate gaming Destiny?
All that said “Sandbox” games can be something of an enigma and it seems difficult to achieve balance between a compelling story and complete freedom, many games have tried and many have failed, sometimes you don’t need a story as proved by the hugely popular Arma II mod DayZ but other times it’s simply the most important part. Some of the most critically acclaimed games of recent years buck the trend for open world and are much stronger titles for being more linear. Bioshock, The Walking Dead, Half Life 2, Dishonored, Portal, Heavy Rain and The Last of Us have all been nominated for and taken home many awards globally. This shows that there is still life in games that are more focused on creating a story than simulating a world these smaller more narrative driven titles offer the player something deeper than a world to play in and will often invoke a stronger emotional attachment than their larger counterparts but it may just be that they are more difficult to develop.
Get ready to be punched in the feels
Creating a living world is one thing but creating a believable story is something else entirely and something that can often be neglected in games which are more focused on adrenaline fueled action and competitive multi-player. The art of weaving a tale is as old as time and I for one don’t think it’s ready to rest it’s weary head just yet.
It’s true to say that video games are always evolving and always looking for that next big idea, how do you guys feel the gaming world will evolve next? Are open worlds or deep stories more important to you? Do you value a short game over a seemingly un-ending one or would you prefer that your favourite game could last forever? Let me know in the comments below and as always thanks for your time.
Quim and ‘menko are back and as bad as ever.
This weeks topics include;
Our longest ever shout-out section dedicated to Super Sugoi,
and much, much more.
Tune in kick-back and let us know what you think on twitter or in the comments below.
p.s kick up the bass boost for the outro this week :D
Down to just the dynamic duo for the second week in a row Quim and eremenko discuss what they’ve been up to in gaming this week along with a whole host of gaming news including;
- One Finger Death Punch in our Indie spotlight
and much much more, give it a listen and feel free to agree or disagree in the comments below.
This week we are joined on the show by Bradley from the belting North East Media and gaming (Nemandg).
The three of us discuss;
In XBone Zone
- The Activision rep that claims MS have to convince gamers their console is worth the extra hundred bucks.
In the all new section PSForeplay
- Mark Cerny gets all nostalgic discussing PlayStation past, present and future at Gamelab in Barca (oh the difficult life of a game dev).
In gaming news we blather on about;
- BioShock infinite DLC
- Shoei Yoshida’s stance on the inclusion of PSeye (or whatever they are calling it)
- Google attempting to break into the console market
and finally what would an episode of TBod be without our weekly Destiny Jizz Fest.
Eavesdrop in on our comms and as always let us know what you think in the comments below.
To celebrate the podcast making it to double figures we have a few special guests and seasoned gamers on to discuss the going’s on in gaming.
Amongst other topics we talk about the dark lords EA and their new found control over the creation of Star Wars games
Sony’s moves in making the indie developer feel at home in the PlayStation mobile arena and how we think Microsoft need to pull their finger out.
The comments of one Mark Rein, VP of Epic Games, who believes the next-gen consoles will take full advantage of the Free 2 Play Model and our thoughts on what that could mean as a gamer.
We also talk about games that we would have enjoyed if it weren’t for being hampered by bugs – as well as a bunch of other stuff.
Thanks to Crinbot, Cutmasta C and Spacca Attacker for lending their voices for this one.
Leave a comment if you have an experience to share or question for us. Thanks.
The next generation of consoles is coming in 2013. Technically, the next generation is here, but it’s embarrassing and Nintendo doesn’t want to talk about it. Sony announced the PlayStation 4 along with most of the details necessary for the gaming community to start salivating as well as a release date of “holiday season 2013.” And now the final (major) player sent out an announcement for the next generation Xbox reveal.
Microsoft’s next generation Xbox, codenamed “Durango” and rumored to be “Xbox 720” is the last console to be announced, but it is arguably getting the most attention. Yes, everyone is talking about the new girl next door and all her specs, but the rumors regarding the 720 (what I’ve decided to call it) have not let up. Some of the speculation became so hot as to boil over into an upper Microsoft manager being fired. It is quite enjoyable to see the beginnings of the latest battle in the console war take shape.
Microsoft is in a great position to strategically outmaneuver Sony and it will be interesting to see how they handle each of the strategic categories I will cover.
Microsoft could do some amazing things with the next generation Xbox, but will they? With their track record, it is difficult to predict what will actually happen. I look forward to the 21st to find out.
Let me know your thoughts on the next generation of consoles. Also, I love point and counterpointing in the comments. You can also find me on the social networks below.
PS: I do not own a PS3, but did own a PS2. I migrated to Xbox for two reasons: Halo and the PS controllers hurt my hands after 20 minutes of gameplay. The PS4’s controllers look like they may be more ergonomically pleasing for me.
Just under a month ago, the head honcho of Sony`s big muscly console arm said that they were waiting for the boys at Redmond to make the first move in the next gen console bout, prior to that 2015 was the date being banded about. I’ll admit I was suckered by this porky pie, so it came as a bit of surprise that they were taking the first leap into the pit of next gen, however given the fact that the massive delay between the release of the 360 and the PS3 cost them dearly in sales, then it makes sense that Sony would try and get in there early. Even the staunchest PS fanboy would admit the arms race has been tough for Sony the past 8 years, with them only matching Xbox sales at the end of last year, so in my opinion the big guns are required if they are to reclaim the might of their dynasty from the Age of PS2. In their own words this event is ‘a moment of truth’.
So post announcement is the PlayStation 4 a big gun? Well in short yes, the conference on Wednesday showed the new PS4 to be a really massive fuck off howitzer. The conference itself for the most part was as dry as a nuns chuff in a tub of silica, sparking numerous *yawn emoticons between myself and my hombre eremenko, especially at the beginning when the lead system architect for the PS4 demonstrated a title he had been working on called Knack, I believe eremenko’s words as written verbatim were “This is a joke right?”. Needless to say it looked shit. It turns out that the plan for the conference was to save all the good shit until the end, but more on that later.
The Hardware itself was billed as some super exciting world conquering set up, which I guess as far as consoles go is true, but PC gamers may have a bit to say about that. 8GB of RAM is huge in a console, and its based on x86 architecture which should make it easier for devs to conjure up good games for the PS4 off the bat, a lesson learned from the PS3 which was notorious for being difficult to build games for. The equivalent of a Radeon 7870 is apparently what will be found on board to make the shiny’s shiny, this is a really good card in PC land, although with new architecture for GPU’s coming this year then as usual the console graphics get outdated before it even hits the shelves. If you want a more detailed look at the specs then extremetech.com have a great rundown here.
As for the design, well the controller is basically a dualshock that has been tested extensively in a wind tunnel and the console, well the console is nowhere to be found. Only Sony could announce a new console and not show us what it looks like. Again makes me think they really wanted to beat Microsoft to the punch this time round. Oh speaking of Microsoft the PlayStation Kinect err I mean Eye was also unveiled….meh.
With the mobile/internet era in full swing Sony could hardly ignore this in their plans, the incorporation of video sharing and even web-casting right on the console, along with spectator mode, which lets you watch your friends play games are certainly good concepts, as long as the video share is not on PSN only and allows uploads to YouTube, as this could really get more gamers/aspiring video ‘lets-players’ to invest. The whole idea of helping friends complete a level by taking control of their game if they are sucking, or rather my friends taking my game when I’m sucking seems a little much, I’m hoping that it asks you permission to do so, but even then where is the fun in not beating it yourself. Still points for effort for at least encouraging a more social experience I guess.
ALERT: – This next couple of sentences signifies an up yours to all you loyal Sony fans, enjoy.
Wait, Whats that Sony? No native support of PS3 games right out of the box? Wow, Fail. They say its coming ‘eventually’… A bit like the PS store’s release in Europe… which only happened this year…
Anyway with that out way the lets get onto the games/tech demo’s (of the latter there was a lot, again making me think this event might not have been the longest in its planning). What was shown looked amazing, literally every game bar Knack was so bloody pretty, Killzone Shadow Fall which will launch with the PS4 looked unreal, I love my shooters on the futuristic and frantic side and this game had a sack full of both.
Drivers Club was well drivey blah blah I don’t give a shit, sorry racers are not my thing.
For those who love all things indie, the guy who made Braid, is exclusively releasing his new game The Witness on PS4. It look like a maze game using the same graphics engine as Knack *cough*
Suckerpunch’s PS4 entry, InFamous Second Son looked amazing too, if you want to know what its about, think big brother state and vigilantes with super powers and if you wanna smash shit up, snap necks and it stick to the man (Oo err) this could be the one you want to shell out for.
Personally the bit I found the most exciting, more so than Bungie’s appearance showing even more of nothing with their open world shooter Destiny, was Quantic Dream’s tech demo of an old dude’s face, I think that literally had me sold on what this console can achieve so early on, brilliant stuff. Makes me want a PS4 or an old man, whichever is cheaper. If you like amazing computer graphics or old mans faces check the video out now.
There is plenty more I haven’t mentioned but if you want all the details then I am sure IGN or Eurogamer will oblige, I’ll end the article how I began by saying that Sony see this ‘a moment of truth’, will it indeed ring true with gamers or fall on deaf ears. Either way, the ball’s in your court Microsoft.
-The Quim Ninja
Thanks for reading, what are your feelings toward Sony’s PlayStation 4 announcement? Totally hyped or a bit underwhelmed? Let us know in the comments and please like and/or subscribe for more fucking awesome words in rows.
Resident Evil 6 … 66
Those of you who bought the awesome Dragons Dogma may have already played the early access Resident Evil 6 demo but I have been caught up punching dirt in Minecraft and have therefore neglected my poor little consoles. I have been watching with excitement all the footage that Capcom have been releasing for the forthcoming sixth genuine installment of one of the finest game series of all time. Today I finally got around to reuniting myself with Leon, Chris and the gang in said demo.
It might be a good idea to not get in a lift with this girl …. just saying.
The demo actually gives you access to three of the games campaigns, in which you get to play out part of the story for Leon, Chris and Jake’s individual adventures, each seems to offer a slightly different variation of Resi action. I dove straight into Leon’s campaign and I have to say I was very pleased with what I experienced. The setting, enemies and action were all so familiar to me as a fan of the series. A more urban Gothic setting than that on show in the fourth and fifth installments I was made to feel instantly at home in the dark scary hallways of the college. Immediately feeling like I was playing an old school Resident Evil title by the eerie chiming of a nearby grandfather clock and reminded soon enough that this game is all about atmosphere and terror …oh and Zombies. That’s right the old Zed heads are back replete with grey rotting flesh and drooling, groaning mouths. In a nod to the earlier games Leon even advises his new partner to aim for the head a nice touch for those of us who have gone through hell and come out alive more than once with former Raccoon City rookie cop Leon.S.Kennedy.
Even VG characters take bad ID pics
Onto the old stalwart. Chris Redfield star of the original Resi has gone rogue and turned into your typical Hollywood good cop gone wrong cliche. Drinking in some eastern European vodka bar, Chris has hit rock bottom but it isn’t long before some BSAA agents show up and quickly re-recruit our ageing hero. You’re thrown straight into the action in the middle of a gun fight with some kind of terrorists. It quickly becomes obvious that these terrorists are actually Los Plagos infectees (the much criticised new enemies from the fourth and fifth Resi games). I wasn’t the biggest advocate of these guys in the newer titles and I doubt this will be my favourite of the new campaigns. It seems like Capcom are trying to muscle their way into the shooter market with this and if the lackluster Operation Raccoon City is anything to go by the return of the beloved series hero wont be the strongest piece of the new titles jigsaw.
Fighting your way through hordes of machine gun wielding, mask wearing enemies is not easy with the games poor view-point (something which will hopefully be remedied in the finished product) and you will often find yourself wondering where you are being shot from. The saving grace here looks to be the mutations of said enemies who grow extra limbs, heads and in some cases wings, much like in Resi 4 and 5, offering much-needed relief from the run and gun nature of this beast.
Finally Jake’s campaign. Accompanied by the return of Sherry Birkin, last seen as an annoying brat (with an unbelievable knack for survival) in Resi 2, Jake is a mercenary employed by Sherry for some unknown reason. Heavily Rumored to be Hunk (one of the secret characters from the same game) Jake and Sherry are pitted against some kind of enhanced biological weapon behemoth akin to the third installments Nemesis. It features some classic explosive barrel mechanics and seems like it will be a solid if somewhat repetitive addition to our main hero’s struggles.
Look into my eyes
There is also set to be a reunion of sorts for Leon and his anti-hero love interest Ada Wong a fan favourite who offers a more athletic style of play. Something of an enigma Ada uses her ninja like abilities to kick, punch and grapple her way through the undead minions rather than just blasting and bludgeoning them to death.
Everyone loves a bad girl
One thing I that irks me about new gen Resi games is the focus on co-op. It is so much more difficult to create that sense of fear and isolation when you are always accompanied by a friend or an idiotic AI. Yes multiplayer games are fun but I fear IP’s such as this lose alot of the atmosphere by adding this dimension. It may not have the epic open world of Cherno from DayZ at times you feel as if you are being pushed down a pre determined pathway and that lack of freedom can be frustrating at times but the hopefully the game will more than make up for this in narrative and puzzles. All in all this looks like a pretty exciting title and with an October 2nd release just around the corner expect to spend most of Halloween month fighting the forces of evil just like Bruce Campbell would’ve wanted.
- Elth Out
So we have finally come to the climax of our epic recollection of our own personal ghosts of gaming past. There are so many games that we haven’t had the chance to talk about like Road Rash, Desert Strike, Tomb Raider, FF7, Nebulus, World cup italia 90, Tennis Ace, Alex the Kid in Miracle world, Splatterhouse, Ghouls and ghosts, Another world, Turtles in time and Speed Ball are just some of the titles I considered boring you to sleep with. Alas we decided to narrow our selections down to five and without further ado onto the last.
For my final choice I opted for a game that was again released in the bumper year of ’97 (coincidentally the very same year our beloved Bungie was formed) I didn’t mention this or my compatriots game in my previous posts run down of titles from the same year as I didn’t want to spoil the surprise for you, our lucky, lucky readers. (MS Dosser: – unfortunately I did like a nob)
The game I’m about to discuss has an age rating on it so for argument’s sake lets say I didn’t play it til around ’99. After the original ’96 title received critical acclaim this extended version was released to tide fans over whilst awaiting the sequel. A first for me, despite having seen George A Romero‘s 1978 classic Dawn of the Dead a few years earlier, I had never before had the chance to go toe to toe with a horde of flesh-eating, brain-dead Zombie Bastards.
You had probably already come to the conclusion that I was going to be talking about the RE series. Like me, many of you would have screamed yourself silly when that first iconic dead head craned his neck and rose to meet Chris/Jill after being so rudely uninterrupted from his less than conventional snack. From that moment on this game kept me on the edge of my seat right up until the glorious rooftop climax. Capcom, previously better known for the hugely successful Street Fighter series and Megaman games you would probably never have guessed that this (almost) spoof of Western horror flicks would become their biggest and most profitable franchise to date. However with the popularity of the PS amongst adolescent teens and young men the walking dead were always destined to become a massive hit.
The opening sequence was most unusually filmed footage with real life actors!! Far from lending the game some gravitas this shoddy B-movie style intro actually detracts somewhat from the horrors you would find within the Arklay Mansion. That said I still love everything about this cheesy intro (from Barry’s blatantly stuck on ginger beard to Chris woodenly shouting “No! Don’t go!” at a rapidly shrinking badly animated CG helicopter) and I wouldn’t change it for the world. So you escape the attentions of the first Zombie and try to find your missing fellow S.T.A.R.S (special tactics and rescue service) members from the Raccoon city police department, things can surely only get better right ….. right? Nope.
Pretty soon you get the hang of dodging or killing the shambling, moaning, biting, rotting corpses wandering the hallways of this mountainside mansion. Should you decide to try to take out each and every T-virus victim you are going to run out of ammo pretty quickly (Unless you are playing on noob mode), which you will soon live, or not, to regret. In the early stages of the game running from Z-heads is not the most of your worries and you will find yourself spending most of your time searching through files for clues (some of the most important plot points come from reading through various documents and diaries known as files) rifling through drawers for ammo and searching high and low for the various jewels, crests, crank handle and keys required to gain access to the other areas of the mansion giving the game something of a puzzle/mystery adventure. As you delve further into the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Bravo team and the Umbrella corporation’s sinister experiments you find yourself up against odds stacked increasingly against you.
Sit Ubu Sit …. good dog.
The Zombies become the least of your worries when you discover what other mutants the mad scientists have created from the labs hidden deep within the mountain under the mansion. Cerberus the infected dogs are one of the earliest to be introduced, their movement speed combined with your characters slow aiming makes them incredibly difficult to take down without taking some serious damage.
Hunters come next, a kind of mutant frog zombie thing with razor claws that will slice you to pieces given half a chance. If you think that’s the worst of it you’re wrong, as giant spiders, snakes, bloodthirsty sharks and more await you down each and every corridor and lurk in all the dark corners.
The villains are brilliant (I wont name names in case you have yet to discover who it is but most of you know who I mean) and the spooky atmosphere created here is topped probably only by the brilliant Silent Hill and the game will have you jumping out of your seat time and time again (especially if you insist on playing it alone in the dark). I know it’s not without its drawbacks, the clunky animations of the square chunky character models stand out against the lush static backgrounds and I know many who would criticise the games slow pace, you could wander around for hours searching for a key and not encounter any enemies. Every time you enter a door or climb a set stairs you are treated to a painfully slow first person animation depicting the opening door or ascending of stairs, for some this is an unwanted distraction, for me however this along with the frozen camera angles (which at times seem to be designed deliberately to make it impossible for you to see your foes) just adds to the tension, an important aspect for any horror title movie or game. Yes the voice acting is a joke and the way the characters gesticulate wildly whenever they speak is borderline hilarious and completely unnecessary … we can tell who is speaking thank you very much but these are minor flaws and they have little impact on the game.
Resident Evil is one of the best titles, not just of the 128 bit generation but of all time. It has been so influential to many games that have come since (Alone in the Dark, Silent Hill, Eternal Darkness, Project Zero, Obscure to name but a few). A series which has spawned many sequels, prequels, Hollywood movies even novelizations and reboots over the years, most notably a full remake on GameCube and DS and continues today. With the forthcoming RE6 looking to bring together some of these games’ most beloved characters I think there is life in this old viral mutant romp yet.
I have to give thanks Capcom for preparing me for the inevitable Zombie Emergency from a very early age.
-” So I ate his face Itchy …. tasty ….”
The last game on my list I know pretty much every gamer holds dear to their hearts and undoubtedly gave a lot of you your first proper case of ‘Nintendo Thumb’. It’s a totally obvious choice so by all means call me a noob in the comments, that’s fine because this game pretty much invented everything in every game I play now in one form or another. Its Goldeneye 007.
Whilst you lot finish your silent nerdgasms at your desks and public fist pumping on the bus I’ll give you a brief history. For those 3 people who don’t know it was released in 1997 and developed by Rare, who also created the brilliant Donkey Kong Country mentioned earlier in this series, Goldeneye is a stealth game that takes place during the James Bond movie of the same name released 2 years earlier. At first it was destined to be a Virtua Cop inspired on-the-rails shooter but given the strides in console technology the viability of a more Doom based 3D shooter meant that the Goldeneye we love was born.
This game’s accomplishments have been trumpeted from on high and still echo round the crevices of gaming culture today and I think it’s important to just recognise how this game was able to become so influential. I am sure this was down to the fact that Rare were given as much time as they needed to develop this game and were under no pressure to get it released to coincide with the movie. Which if released today, for a game such as this is a scenario that would just not be permitted with the likes of EA and Activision banging the drum at developers to make sure they row or face a lashing. This game proves that time is by far a developers greatest resource.
So now we know how (complete with sly corporate dig) the question now is why was this game so bloody good. Personally as much as I loved the single player, I mean that moment where you hurl yourself off the Contra Dam sticks with anyone who played Goldeneye, but as usual the multiplayer was where the real fun started for me.
It is even more staggering that Martin Hollis the lead designer said that the multiplayer was “a complete afterthought”. Good job you put it in there Mr Hollis because every console shooter has only really moved a couple of inches since from your vision and in fact in some cases have taken a step back by not even allowing split screen multiplayer.
The N64 brought you the ability to have up to four players at once in split screen mode and with Goldeneye being the first proper multiplayer console shooter it paved the way for those early LAN party style play sessions where automatic gunfire ushered in the birth of talking smack for a whole generation. Living close to school I spent many a lunch time and even more revision time for mock GCSE’s glued to my TV trying to, often unsuccessfully, kill three of my mates whilst another few lads watched on awaiting their turn.
The only rules were winner stays on and no one can be Oddjob.
The game modes were genius and still directly translate into almost every modern shooter. Take the always tense and quite often very campy You Only Live Twice, whereby a player has two lives and once you lose those lives your out, you lose and are subsequently mocked by your friends. A modern parallel that immediately springs to mind is that of the Call of Duty series Search and Destroy mode which just added an objective which everyone ignores and got rid of a life. Similarly the License to Kill mode is a one shot one kill game which is basically Halo’s Team Swat and The Living Daylights is an objective game whereby you must control a flag and hold it for as long as possible… sound familiar? It should because this mode exists in pretty much every FPS out today.
Continuing with the theme of firsts, the guns again were right up there, Goldeneye used realistic models of guns which if you look at most of its contemporary PC shooters like Quake they were much more pretendy, as were the guns in the N64’s coldly received Turok. Proximity and remote mines made an appearance which as far as I am aware had not surfaced before, which personally led to some of the most ridiculous infinite proxy mines custom matches and now are seen throughout most realistic military shooter in the form of claymore’s and C4. Oh yeah it had throwing knives too, nuff said.
Most notably though is the console appearance of the zoomable sniper rifle which, along with MDK that Elth mentioned last post, Goldeneye is credited for popularising. You just have to look at any game with guns in it and this feature is as standard.
I could go on about the level design for an age but I wont as I know this is getting a little long and gushy but I will say Archives and Facility were a triumph and especially good for those remote mine insanity sessions I mentioned earlier. The variety of levels was great too and it didn’t matter one bit about the extensive use of gray-scale throughout most of them. Back then this game was cutting edge and it felt like it every time you played, nowadays its firmly planted in the history books as the game that pushed the console shooter snowball off the top of the cliff. Epic cannot even describe my love for this game and it’s perfect in every way.
Just ignore the fact you can’t jump.
Well that’s it, the rose tinted glasses are off and our look back at our most memorable games as a youngster has come to a close. Did you play Resident Evil or Goldeneye? What did you think of them or indeed any of the games in the previous posts? Please subscribe and leave us comments, you can also follow us on Twitter @TeaBagOrDie.