FRESCO
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Paintings literally change the world in upcoming puzzler FRESCO

The years after Portal came out in 2007 were tiring. An influx of first-person puzzle games broke like a tidal wave over the horizon. All of them flaunting what their creators deemed to be the next big “mind-bending” idea. They simply hoped to wow people. But many of these games were were dull, uninspired rehashes. The genre was quickly saturated to the point that it became unbearable. I’m hit with surprise, then, that upon seeing FRESCO, an upcoming first-person puzzle game, I haven’t held my hands to my face and screamed until my throat was hoarse. Maybe the fallout of 2007 has…

Sunless Skies
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Sunless Skies doesn’t take place in outer space as we know it

It’s no surprise that outer space in Sunless Skies isn’t the terrifying vacuum that we know lingers above our heads. After all, the sea in the game’s predecessor Sunless Sea wasn’t the blue ocean of our Earth—it was the Unterzee, an underground sea populated with its own terrible creatures and peculiar folktales to pursue. In a blog post, Failbetter Games outlined what will likely come to define the High Wilderness, which is the name given to space in Sunless Skies—note: Failbetter has said that this is all in the early stages and “we might revise it, change it completely.” The studio starts…

Sea of Solitude
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Sea of Solitude’s sublime exploration of loneliness now backed by EA

Sea of Solitude was one of the most intriguing and sublime game concepts that flashed across my eyes last year. It follows a girl called Kay who has been turned into a monster and is on a journey to find out how that happened. Most striking about it is the world it’s set in: a submerged city where gigantic fish and a talking crow-like creature lurk just out of sight, hiding in the cover of fog or the murkiness of the deep. It’s a game about loneliness skewed with a vision marked by both beauty and terror. And now EA…

screen-shot-2016-12-08-at-1-45-52-pm
News

Your next dose of Uncharted features two female leads

It was revealed during the Playstation Experience on December 3rd that Uncharted 4’s single player DLC will feature a few familiar faces. Returning to steal our hearts is Chloe Frazer as the main character and mercenary leader Nadine Ross as supporting cast. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is slated for a 2017 release and has been described as a standalone experience. In true Naughty Dog fashion, the studio remained tight-lipped after the conclusion of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, leading many to wonder about the inevitable DLC. Some fans speculated that it would follow the adventures of Sully and Sam, as…

watch-dogs-3
Feature

Watch Dogs 2 is a love letter to a San Francisco I no longer recognize

I’m playing as Marcus Holloway in Watch Dogs 2, traipsing around a digital recreation of San Francisco. Angry at the system, Marcus has embarked on a romanticized hacking-heavy quest for revenge on nefarious corporations. In Watch Dogs 2, they’re evil personified within the Blume Corporation and ctOS 2.0, the operating system that runs the city. As Marcus awakens in a hungover daze across the bay in Marin County near the start of the game, he finds himself overlooking San Francisco, no signature Karl The Fog in sight. It’s a beautiful city, if a bit unrealistic. There’s always fog, and maybe…

How To Everything
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Watch a computer desperately try to express itself as it faces death

A bodilesss hand floats sideways through a knife. The knife swings wildly to dissect a watermelon, cutting it into ever smaller chunks, until all that’s left is juicy debris in zero gravity. An explosion. Large rocks fall. A humming bird appears, flapping wildly, then it disappears. Another explosion. Over the next few seconds, a small dinosaur, a chicken, and a creature made of pink intestines will each spend a second on-screen. It’s fair to say that WTF is the first reaction you’re going to have to “How To Everything.” There is a lot going on and no chance of a…

rain world
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See how far the incredible alien planet of Rain World has come

Unveiled over the weekend during PlayStation Experience, the new trailer for Rain World opens with a heavy, droning noise, and a single white slugcat, in a dark industrial world. First it states “you are alone.” Then, a moment before the cut, a question mark appears. “You are alone?” As the soundtrack blooms into a driving synth song, the world also opens up, revealing an elaborate ecosystem where the slugcat is both predator and prey. Rain World was originally funded on Kickstarter in 2014, and was slated to come out later that year. But this new trailer shows just how far…

shenzen
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SHENZEN I/O is here to make you code like it’s the 1980s

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. SHENZEN I/O (Windows, Mac) BY ZACHTRONICS Some games and educational apps try to ease you into the art of writing code. SHENZEN I/O isn’t so soft. It’s a throwback to the 1980s, when there wasn’t much so media geared towards teaching people how to code. Hence, it begins its lessons by throwing a hefty manual (which you can print out) and a number of circuit-based challenges at you, and then leaves you to figure it out. There’s a little bit of guidance at first but…

dyrus_retired-esports-stars5-e1473885704346
Feature

Why Retired esports Stars Turn to Twitch

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Most professional gamers call quits on their careers long before they turn 30, but streaming platforms ensure these players can do what they love without the stress of competing in the big leagues. Imagine falling into fame and fortune at the age of 16, flying around the world to compete in videogame tournaments with prize pools totaling thousands and even millions of dollars. This is the world most esports athletes live in, skyrocketing to success before they’re old enough to drive. Even the brightest esports stars, however, can burnout fast:…