Future Unfolding
News

You can sprint across Future Unfolding’s dreamlike meadows very soon

Future Unfolding has looked good for a long time. We first spotted it almost three years ago when we naively said that it would be coming out in 2014. Not a chance. We’ve just entered 2017 and it’s still not out. But it will be out soon. In fact, its arrival is listed on Steam as “Early 2017.” If you haven’t yet recovered from your New Year’s Eve party, let me get you up to speed: that’s where we are right now. Andreas Zecher, one of the people making Future Unfolding, is already prepping for the drop. As far as can…

Diluvion
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Diluvion is aiming for all the undersea peril and wonder of a literary classic

Outer space is what currently holds the global population’s active imagination. The big breakthroughs in science that wow us are made up there, and so our popular stories follow suit—whether it’s space disasters directed by Hollywood (Gravity, Interstellar, The Martian) or videogames that promise us the universe (No Man’s Sky, Stellaris, Elite: Dangerous). Popular culture’s current output sells the idea that we are infatuated with life and death beyond our home planet. But Leo Dassey, creative director at Arachnid Games, hasn’t turned his head to the skies; he’s looking the other way. His team’s upcoming game Diluvion is an undersea adventure…

rom-1
News

Need a break from the world? Chill out on a virtual island

Don’t you ever wish you could escape to a remote island just to get away from it all, even for five or 10 minutes? If so, check out ROM, a “short experimental experience” created by HTW Berlin students Paul Schnepf, Rainer Windolph, and Friedemann Allmenröder. Created as part of the Game Design BA curriculum, ROM allows you to explore a desolate island and take control of its environment. Revive its ancient machines to alter the weather and bring the island back to life. Activating one machine causes snow to cover the land; another brings on a sudden driving rainstorm accompanied by…

RŌA
News

Find bliss in the noisy glitch-visuals of RŌA

RŌA is best seen rather than described. But, as I have to use words, I’ll say that my first impressions of it were that it looks like someone turned datamoshing into a videogame (if you don’t know what datamoshing is, there’s a whole site dedicated to it). Colors belch into each other across the screen, glitching, frazzled, swirling like electronic liquid. Among these colors you can sometimes make out figures, stood in a group, all of them frozen in their animation. These figures seem to affect the shades and tones of the pixels of color around them, while they themselves…

Firewatch
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Calling all explorers: Firewatch now has a free-roam mode

If you could shout “Heyooooo” into Firewatch‘s virtual rendition of the Wyoming wilderness then you would now be able to travel to everywhere the call echoed. That’s on account of an update that has rolled out for all the versions of the game—PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One—that introduces a free-roam mode. hike around its trails unhindered After completing the game once, you should find the mode available to select in the special features section of the main menu. Once inside, you can walk and climb around its entire ecosystem with a dynamic 24-hour time cycle to experience too. That…

No Man's Sky header
Feature

The greatest technical feats in No Man’s Sky

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. A veteran explorer, low on supplies, lands on an uncharted alien planet with a cyan ocean and ruby-red grass. Enormous, dinosaur-like creatures with horns graze nearby, but at least there doesn’t appear to be any acid rain, unlike the last place. After some scavenging, the explorer hops back onto her spaceship to tackle another one of the 18 quintillion planets ahead. The space exploration game No Man’s Sky, released in August 2016, is already famous for its singularly beautiful digital world. But it’s also an unprecedented technical marvel, one…

Lost Ember
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Give Lost Ember all your money so you can play as a good boy

A gentle breeze rustles the tall grass that surrounds you, causing the blades to sway back and forth lazily to the soft rhythm of the wind. Up ahead lies a dirt path, leading to an unknown destination whose name was lost to time long ago. You’re curled up on a patch of soil near a bank of water, taking a short break from exploring the environment. The ripples created by the wind roll slowly toward you, splashing at your paws. You catch a glimpse of your resting form in the reflection—distorted, but beautiful. Your coat is thick and long, and…

orangeglass
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Beads of Orange Glass is a wonderful piece of generative art

Commissioned for the No Quarter exhibition at the NYU Game Center, Loren Schmidt’s Beads of Orange Glass is now available for download on itch.io. The game is not interested in holding players’ hands through a guided narrative; instead, players shape their experience themselves as they explore the game’s rich textural space. A two-player game, one player navigates the pixelated landscape while the other adjusts the minimal landscape, triggering rain showers and falling stars, growing moss, and planting trees. Players can change themselves, too—into deer, birds, and trees. Without words, Beads of Orange Glass tells stories through a generated world with random sets of verbs…

life of sundura 6
News

An upcoming microbiological videogame looks pretty chill

Existence is stressful. This is what the passage of time teaches us as we trade our carefree childhoods for a decision-ridden adult life. Modern life can fill us to the brim with anxiety. Our brains conspire against us, pumping our minds full of negative thoughts, paralyzing our bodies with indecision as we are asked to confront the long road of our lives and the individual choices that form the paving stones beneath our feet. Wow, that got a bit real there. But, hey, if ever you need a respite from the chaos of everyday life, return to the basics in…