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Indie Developer Spotlight: Liege

Indie Developer Spotlight: Liege

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That’s right, we have TWO Indie Developer Spotlights this month! With all the contacts we made at Too Many Games, we decided to double down this month. Enjoy!

We spoke with John from Coda Games, who we met at Too Many Games, about their upcoming game, Liege. Here’s what he had to say:

Q1. Tell us about your game.
Liege is a story driven RPG with a deep, tactical core. The game has classic JRPG influences, but:
– Modern presentation
– Seamless, fast paced tactical battles
– No random encounters, no grinding, no fetch quests, no fluff

Here’s the trailer:

Q2. What was your inspiration to create the game?
Inspiration for the game came from lots of places: Classic RPGs I loved as a kid (FFVI, FF Tactics and Suikoden) were some of the original inspirations, while more recently games like the new XCOMs and Transistor had a big influence as we developed the mechanics. Inspiration for the story and setting came mostly from outside of games (fantasy books, film and TV- too many to list!).

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Q3. When should we expect to see it?
As of now we’re aiming to release on Steam Q1 next year, with console ports in Q2-Q3 2017.

Games to Get Excited About in June 2016

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Games to Get Excited About in June 2016

 

Ah, June! June is the unofficial start of summer fun. A month full of promises. Schools are letting out. Father’s day is coming up. What better way to celebrate than with games?  We have so many games releases coming up this month, which is why I’ve decided that, instead of writing about just one game, I’d write about several!

Here are some games, in no real order, to get excited about in June.

Oh My Goods

oh my goods

Okay, let’s start off with a tabletop game. Oh My Goods is a game set in the Middle Ages. Use your connections to become the most powerful merchant in the land. Only if you are clever will you have the most points at the end of the game. Fun bonus is that the rules are in both English and German.

Anima: Gate of Memories

anima

Set to be released for PlayStation 4 on June 3rd, Anima: Gate of Memories is a third person RPG. Players get to explore a vast world with dragons. I have read great things about the soundtrack and the story that accompany game play.

 

Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Daughter

Sherlock_Holmes_The_Devils_Daughter_cover_art

If convenient, play. If not, play anyway. So, I won’t lie, I get excited by the prospect of almost anything Sherlock Holmes related. In true Holmes fashion, the game will be mostly centered on examining crime scenes. Then the player can add clues to the “deduction board.” These deductions  can lead to success in finding the culprit or failure.

Grand Kingdom

Grand_Kingdom_cover

Grand Kingdom is set to be released in North America and Europe this month. It is a tactical RPG. Players get to play turn-based battles with magic and sword attacks depending on the specialties of the combat class the player belongs to. This will be a great game for players who like to think about a big picture, such as how to best position their whole unit.

7 Days to Die

7_Days_To_Die_cover_art

This is a survival horror game. Set after the third world war, the player is a survivor who must find basic needs, such as food, shelter and water. Players also must scavenge and fight off zombie-like creatures. Oh, did I forget to mention that I read that the zombies get more aggressive over time?

There are so many more interesting games to look forward this month, so keep your eyes peeled for them if you didn’t see something you liked above. Really we are getting spoiled this year between remakes and new releases. Also, if you are looking for a gift, perhaps one of the above would be a good game to give.

Have fun gaming this month, friends!

How One Gaming App Can Benefit Your Daily Life

How One Gaming App Can Benefit Your Daily Life

In today’s world, we’re moving just a bit too fast. We all have 10,000 things to do and it’s hard to keep track of all of them. When we fail to do so, we start to feel overwhelmed or even awful about ourselves as people. When this happens, we become discouraged, more “to dos” fall to the wayside, and we begin to feel like we can’t get out.

I’m a personal fan of organizing my day. I have two calendars hanging on the wall next to me and a To Do List Notebook as well as a 2016 Daily Planner on my desk. I cross things off as I get them done and make sure to check my lists at least 3 times a day. This is how I keep myself from drowning under my daily to dos.

There is another way to organize, though. Calendars and notebooks and planners can be so boring and monotonous. The other day, Crymson told me about this cool app she has on her phone called Habitica.

Habitica Promo

Habitica turns your life into an RPG.

How cool is that?!

According to the website, Habitica is designed to help you improve your habits in day-to-day life. By forming healthy habits and being productive, you can build up your avatar and collect awesome loot. You can team up with your friends or even join a guild in order to keep yourself motivated and on the right path.

The app promotes good habits by giving you experience points and gold pieces for being productive and taking away HP for doing unhealthy or unproductive activities, such as procrastinating or eating junk food. You can purchase rewards with the gold you earn and get cool new gear or health potions.

Sample Screen - Equipment

Equipment

 

I decided to download it myself and give it a test run. When I made my account, I was asked to create a custom 8-bit avatar – Final Fantasy style. She has black hair, very pale skin and a black shirt. She even has a green flower in her hair. 8-bit Vanri is adorable.

Next, i was asked which areas in my life I wanted to improve. This was easy: work, school, health and wellness, and creativity. I was then taken to my profile, where I already had tasks and to dos waiting for me! I got 6 EXP and 1 GP just for writing this article.

Sample Screen - Boss (iOS)

Boss Fight (iOS)

The mobile interface is easy to figure out. You have your home page, where you have four lists: Habits (i.e. Eat Healthy), Dailies (i.e. Do Homework), Todos (i.e. Finish Creative Project) and Rewards (things you can buy with your GP). You can go to the Tavern, meet people and “Pause your Dailies,” which will keep your unfinished dailies from hurting your over night. You can also create a party or join a guild from the menu on the side.

As a highly organized and bored individual, I can definitely say that Habitica will help bring the fun back into my busy life. I’m still going to need all my calendars and to do lists to keep everything straight, but at least now I can treat them like a video game, which takes some of the stress away.

I highly recommend it. I mean, it’s free, so you might as well try it, right?

Dungeons and Dragons, Devil’s Playground to Pop Culture Staple

TT_NotTheFandom

In the early 70’s, fans of war games like Chainmail created a game that would become one of the most popular in history.  Dungeons and Dragons was published by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc in 1974, and was created by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.  The venture was a risk, but one that ultimately paid off for the fledgling company that would later be known as TSR.  During it’s time, TSR released three versions of the game, over the course of 23 years, and sold to Wizards of the Coast in 1997 who has put out four versions of the game in less time.  The game sparked an industry that has become massive, but, despite stiff competition, D&D still remains the most well-known – and popular – tabletop RPG.

Like a lot of people, my introduction into tabletop RPGs was with Dungeons and Dragons, and I got in at the tender age of 14.  I was on vacation with my folks, back in the town I grew up in but no longer called home.  Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 2nd edition had just been released, and a buddy of mine I’d known since elementary school – and kept in touch with despite distance – invited me over to play a game with his friends.  We rolled up a character for me, a draconian named Ayla (I was reading Valley of the Horses on that vacation) and we set about having a great afternoon of fun.  Little did I know that day would spark my love for a hobby that I still carry 26 years later.

It was an interesting time to get involved in this hobby; a transition period of sorts, when D&D was just starting to change its image and become more popular with groups of younger players.  The game was beginning to climb out of a dark period of paranoia, ignorance and outright hate surrounding ideas of what people thought the game was.  Many people were afraid of it due to simple ignorance.  I knew a lot of friends who had to hide the fact they played D&D from their parents, and others who got in trouble when their books were found.  Non-gamers like Jack T. Chick and Patricia Pulling were outright spreading lies about the game, linking it to the occult, devil worship, and witchcraft to try and keep people away from the game.

Patricia is infamous for starting Bothered About Dungeons & Dragons, or BADD, in 1982 after her son committed suicide.  She believed that a D&D curse was placed on her son at school, which led to his death, and even sued the school principle for wrongful death and then sued TSR.  I presume the kids played at school.  She started BADD after the suits were thrown out, and used the advocacy group to push the idea that D&D caused children to participate in all manner of awful activity including rape, murder, Satanism and suicide.  During the course of the case, several reporters disproved her claims, including one report by Michael A. Stackpole which showed that players of the game were far less likely to commit suicide than non-gamers.  When Pulling died, BADD evaporated, but it continued through my early years of playing D&D.

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Review: Cthulhu Saves the World (2011)

Dev. Zeboyd Games
Pub. Zeboyd Games
Released: 7/13/2011
Platform: PC

cth1

It’s pretty hard to see a game title like Cthulhu Saves the World and not instantly decide to play it. That’s what happened to me. I didn’t even care what kind of game it was. It could have been a first-person shooter (which triggers my motion sickness) for all I cared. I needed this game. And, I tell you, I was not disappointed.

What’s it about?
The dark lord Cthulhu rose from the depths of the ocean to sink the world into insanity and darkness, but, before he could cause any damage, his powers were sealed by a mysterious sorcerer. Now, he is tasked to become a true hero so that he can gain his powers back. In order to destroy the world, Cthulhu must first save it.

What did I think?
Cthulhu Saves the World is an RPG parody. It takes old school RPG graphics, reminiscent of the first Final Fantasy game, to tell you the downright hilarious tale of how the dark lord Cthulhu has to become a hero among humans. Pretty great, right?

The graphics are nostalgic to me, since I spent my childhood playing 16-bit RPGs like Final Fantasy and Chrono Trigger. The story line is entertaining and the dialogue is sarcastic, witty and just plain funny.

Not only is this game funny and clever, but it also has characters you actually like. You can laugh at the rival hero team, but sincerely care about whether Umi dies in battle. Cthulhu himself is even lovable.

The only criticism I have of this game is that there’s too much walking without enough action. Each new place has random corridors or pathways that have nothing to do with anything. I find myself randomly picking one way and ending up in a dead end, then having to fight in 5 battles to get back to where I was. It’s a little frustrating (especially when filming a Let’s Play) and somewhat boring.

Do I recommend it?
Yes, I do. I highly recommend it. Despite the boring grinding, it’s a well-made and incredibly entertaining game. You can buy it on Steam in a pack with Breath of Death VII: The Beginning for only $2.99.

Games to Get Excited About: Indivisible

Indivisible 1

Lab Zero Games is an independent game developer, formed by the original creators of the 2D fighting game Skullgirls. This year, at Anime Expo 2015, they announced their next project: a side-scrolling action/RPG currently titled Indivisible. So, why should you be excited about it?

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Women were a rarity, A Guest Post

Magic: The Gathering

Hi there, everyone!  I was asked by my friend Crymson Pleasure to write up a guest post about women in gaming. A little about myself first.  I have been playing tabletop RPG’s since around 1985-86, Magic: The Gathering from 1993, and MMORPG’s since 1999 with Everquest being the one I have played the longest.  

What are my feelings on women in gaming?  There aren’t enough!  Gaming of all types is lacking in female representation, and it shouldn’t be as it’s something that anyone can do no matter their sex, age, color, or any other factor.  There is no reason for women to feel excluded from gaming or made to feel like it’s for boys only.  If more guys would put an effort into welcoming women or getting them to try the games it would expand the amount of available players, and bring more creativity to them.  A great example is my friend Kate.  I met her through my friend Justin, and have introduced them both to Pathfinder and the wonderful world of tabletop RPG’s.  We ended 4 books into a 6-book module set, and they were both enjoying it greatly.  It was first time either one of them have ever played anything like it and she is having as much fun as he and I are.  She asked just as many good questions as he did, and got just as mad as any other player when the dice won’t fall in her favor.    

While I was growing up and playing Magic and early D&D games, women were a rarity, and I think that was at least partially the fault of gamers, and also of the companies making the games.  It wasn’t that we were purposely excluding them, but more that it wasn’t “accepted” as much for them to ask about, and join games.  The advent of online MMORPG’s helped break that mold as – unless you asked – you never knew if the persons you were playing with were guys or girls.  More women started playing games and taking their love of them to the outside world and into tabletop/LARP games.  

Pathfinder Table Top Game

When you look around today you can find women playing and running D&D games, and competing at magic tournaments.  Feline Longmore, and Jadine Klomparens are both women who play Magic at the competitive level and consistently get high placings at the tournaments they go to.  I hope to be that good myself one day.  I am sure there are many more that show up at the individual tournaments and Friday Night Magic in their local area, but there is still not enough.

All in all, we as gamers need to take it upon ourselves to bring more women into the games we play, as they are made to be fun and enjoyed by everyone.  We need to share our love of the games with our friends and loved ones.  Maybe they haven’t joined you in playing because they haven’t felt that rush of a critical hit rolled at just the perfect time, or pulling off the perfect play to a win a game of Magic.  All it takes is that one moment and boom you have them hooked.  

-Henry