Yesterday I spoke of my Best of EGX but there were more games that competed with them for that trophy—or sticker—and today you’ll hear a bit about them. These are games I saw that and loved though most of them were early in development or just didn’t grab as well as those I mentioned yesterday.
I love stealth games and ninja assassination titles rank way up there for me, with Tenchu being one of the best ever. Combine that with a cel-shaded world—a visual style everyone knows makes me drool—and a character that reminds me Raziel from The Legacy of Kain games and you can see all the mental checkboxes this game was ticking.
The gameplay was fluid, something that you rarely hear in stealth games. You could zip using shadows from one point to the next and kill your targets in silence or with magical powers but the closer you were to the light, the weaker you became. If you alerted the light-wielding guards, they would kill you with a single blast. It made for an amazing incentive. You can’t fight them head-on, they’re just too powerful for your weak form, so the shadows not only empower you but also give you the best chance at success.
The story intrigued me. You were once the greatest general in the Light Army and you captured the goddess of the shadow, dying in the process. So now she’s raised you from the dead and made you believe she’s the innocent in all of this, sending you to kill your former comrades and release her. There’s potential for great storytelling there, a chance for a character with great pathos if they handle it correctly.
I’m excited and I want to know more.
Shadowhand: I’m a big fan of solitaire and other card games. I have spent hours playing solitaire on my computer, more than it’s healthy to be honest. But I had never considered solitaire as part of a mechanic in a video game. Nor did I expect RPG elements, and visual novel style to go along with it. And that is exactly what Grey Alien Games brought to the party with Shadow Hand. This is the game that turned the card-game-averse Kim from 1001Up into a believer and it left as big an impression on me.
It was still early in development but it already had the seed of a great game there. The solitaire scenarios were a nice challenge to go between the visual novel elements, and building up combos was tough as hell. There were lock and key cards, which opened the way to more of them to build up your score an then you went into fights with the cards, using the solitaire elements to recharge your abilities, becoming some sort of cooldown feature.
Before I knew it the demo was over but I wanted to know more, I wanted to keep playing and getting more cards and more fights. The developers asked me what my favourite element was and I had to say the fighting but when they asked me if I’d prefer if that was the only scenario I had to say no. The other ones, the challenging solitaire moments, broke up the pace and were incredibly addictive. More than that, the plot and characters were intriguing and I wanted to know more about Lady Darkmoor, who was after her and where would her adventures lead?
I can’t wait to see what Grey Alien Games does with this game!
Raging Justice: Who doesn’t love Final Fight or Double Dragon or any of the classic beat’em ups? The developers behind Raging Justice, Makin Games, are just as big fans of these titles as I am and they’ve gone to great lengths to make this game special to all old-school fans!
I loved how the story didn’t take itself seriously, how it was as over the top as Final Fight, with a crime and corruption-riddled city, with only two cops willing to do the job, hitting and kicking the streets to find the kidnapped mayor, one thug at a time. It’s silly and it’s phenomenal.
If you’ve played any beat’em ups in the past, you’ll love this game. The more you fight, the more moves you unlock and that just makes you fight harder. Enemies come in waves and bosses kick your ass. Something I liked and which reminded me of Final Fight quite a bit was that every enemy had a name, but unlike that classic title where the names were enemy types, here everyone had a unique name, which is awesome.
But what really sold me on the game, what I thought was the most inventive and unique aspect about it was the graphics. Makin Games took 3D models and turned them into sprites with the result being characters that move almost in frame-by-frame animation. They seem slow, almost unnatural and it mimicked the way sprites moved in the classics of the genre. It was a game built in new technologies that perfectly simulated the old-school approach.
I am hooked on Raging Justice and I got some nice coasters out of it!
Worms: WMD – I love he Worms games, they are without a doubt one of the best multiplayer games out there. In fact, they’re even awesome to play on your own. I sat down with a Team17 member to play the game, having a nice round where he obliterated me…with a bit of help from my own mistakes.
What makes WMD so special is that while we were playing with classic weapons such as the Super Sheep and the Holy Hand Grenade—a reference to Monty Python and The Holy Grail—there were also tanks and machine gun nests and other weaponry in the environment we could take advantage of in our duel. I also got assurances Team17 were cooking up even more zany weapons for the game’s release and I can’t wait to see what they come up with next.
But perhaps WMD’s biggest and most interesting change to the formula was the buildings themselves. In earlier Worms titles the buildings, much like everything else, were just destructible blocks, but now you can enter the buildings and they have their own layouts, platforms to climb, places to hide in and so much more. During my playthrough my opponent hid in a nearby building while I did the same in a Hot Dog truck. When he came after me in the truck I used another of my worms and got into the nearby tank and blasted the truck to hell.
I lost in the end, but it was AWESOME!
These games were all amazing, and when they release you can bet your butts I’ll cover them!