Top 50 Challenge 2016 – Quantum Break

about X hours ago from
Top 50 Challenge 2016 – Quantum Break

Brian Shea has challenged me to play Quantum Break to see if I think it can make our annual list of the top 50 games of the year. In his championing of the game, he mentioned how he liked its novel fusion of gaming and television storytelling, how great protagonist Jack Joye’s time-manipulating powers felt, and the way your choices affected both the game and live action show.

I’m with Brian on how novel the game is. Splitting the story up into game and live-action segments works on a few different levels. For one, it lets the story focus on characters other than Jack without having to justify some sort of gameplay conceit or puzzle. You get to see moments you wouldn’t normally see in a game, such as the scene between Liam Burke and his wife, Emily talking about Liam’s long work hours at the job he’s hiding from her.

Top Of The Table – Captain Sonar

about X hours ago from
Top Of The Table – Captain Sonar

One of my favorite trends unfolding in the tabletop scene right now is the reimagining of what components and ideas can formulate a tabletop game. While there are plenty of awesome traditional card and board games releasing in recent months, games like Captain Sonar are stretching the boundaries of expectation. With no dice, cards, or even a traditional board, Captain Sonar manages its gripping gameplay with little more than a few dry-erase markers, some laminated sheets, and a massive screen that separates one team from the other. 

In this new game from designers Roberto Fraga and Yohan Lemonnier (and published stateside by Asmodee), players take on the role of submarine officers, floating silently through the deep on the hunt for the enemy team’s sub. Captain Sonar employs a team-based cooperative approach; up to eight players can play together, splitting off into two teams of up to four. On each team, specific roles must be fulfilled, and the gameplay is different depending on your role. 

Top Of The Table – Captain Sonar

about X hours ago from
Top Of The Table – Captain Sonar

One of my favorite trends unfolding in the tabletop scene right now is the reimagining of what components and ideas can formulate a tabletop game. While there are plenty of awesome traditional card and board games releasing in recent months, games like Captain Sonar are stretching the boundaries of expectation. With no dice, cards, or even a traditional board, Captain Sonar manages its gripping gameplay with little more than a few dry-erase markers, some laminated sheets, and a massive screen that separates one team from the other. 

In this new game from designers Roberto Fraga and Yohan Lemonnier (and published stateside by Asmodee), players take on the role of submarine officers, floating silently through the deep on the hunt for the enemy team’s sub. Captain Sonar employs a team-based cooperative approach; up to eight players can play together, splitting off into two teams of up to four. On each team, specific roles must be fulfilled, and the gameplay is different depending on your role. 

Five Major Changes To Mass Effect’s Multiplayer (And One Big Question)

about X hours ago from
Five Major Changes To Mass Effect’s Multiplayer (And One Big Question)

The Mass Effect series is built on a single-player foundation, but Mass Effect 3 added a compelling cooperative multiplayer mode. That was a risky move for a story-driven RPG, but it paid off for BioWare, drawing in many players who normally stuck to the series’ solo campaign.

Multiplayer returns in Mass Effect Andromeda, and we got to play a few rounds when we visited BioWare’s Montreal studio. If you enjoyed Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer offering as much as we did, then you’ll probably be happy with what the team has in store with Andromeda. However, this new iteration isn’t just recycling the same mechanics. The framework is similar, but BioWare is making some key changes to make the experience deeper and more rewarding for players of all skill levels.

1. Less Hunkering One critical strategy in Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer was figuring out the most defensible points on each map, and then staying in those spots for as many waves as possible. While increasing pressure from advancing enemies certainly made combat feel dangerous, hiding behind a few crates for the majority of a match isn’t the most exciting way to approach multiplayer.

Five Major Changes To Mass Effect’s Multiplayer (And One Big Question)

about X hours ago from
Five Major Changes To Mass Effect’s Multiplayer (And One Big Question)

The Mass Effect series is built on a single-player foundation, but Mass Effect 3 added a compelling cooperative multiplayer mode. That was a risky move for a story-driven RPG, but it paid off for BioWare, drawing in many players who normally stuck to the series’ solo campaign.

Multiplayer returns in Mass Effect Andromeda, and we got to play a few rounds when we visited BioWare’s Montreal studio. If you enjoyed Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer offering as much as we did, then you’ll probably be happy with what the team has in store with Andromeda. However, this new iteration isn’t just recycling the same mechanics. The framework is similar, but BioWare is making some key changes to make the experience deeper and more rewarding for players of all skill levels.

1. Less Hunkering One critical strategy in Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer was figuring out the most defensible points on each map, and then staying in those spots for as many waves as possible. While increasing pressure from advancing enemies certainly made combat feel dangerous, hiding behind a few crates for the majority of a match isn’t the most exciting way to approach multiplayer.

Top 50 Challenge 2016 – Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

about X hours ago from
Top 50 Challenge 2016 – Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

It has been a great year for games, and now the top 50 challenges begin. While I was curious about Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, it was doomed to stay forever in my backlog with this year's unending stream of quality titles rolling out one after another. So when Javy decided to throw me into the mix, I was more than happy to dig in, and see if my thoughts would echo Andrew Reiner's review. For games like this, that can take more than a day of play to finish, so sometimes we have to make judgments without the entire tale.

Top 50 Challenge 2016 – Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

about X hours ago from

It has been a great year for games, and now the top 50 challenges begin. While I was curious about Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, it was doomed to stay forever in my backlog with this year's unending stream of quality titles rolling out one after another. So when Javy decided to throw me into the mix, I was more than happy to dig in, and see if my thoughts would echo Andrew Reiner's review. For games like this, that can take more than a day of play to finish, sometimes we have to make judgments without the entire tale.

For Crying Out Loud, Here's Some More Gaming Haiku

about X hours ago from
For Crying Out Loud, Here's Some More Gaming Haiku

Why, hello there. Every once in a while, I like to sit down and reflect on what I've been playing, filtering my thoughts through art's highest form: the haiku. Today I'm sharing my latest batch, covering a slew of recent releases. Yes, I've been busy. Once you've absorbed these, be sure to check out my previous entries here, here, herehere, here, here and here. And as always, you're welcome.

OverwatchHeroes never die,
but Mercy does it a lot.
Want to fly away...

Killing Floor 2
More waves of zombies,
They're naked but could be worse.
All their junk fell off.

For Crying Out Loud, Here's Some More Gaming Haiku

about X hours ago from
For Crying Out Loud, Here's Some More Gaming Haiku

Why, hello there. Every once in a while, I like to sit down and reflect on what I've been playing, filtering my thoughts through art's highest form: the haiku. Today I'm sharing my latest batch, covering a slew of recent releases. Yes, I've been busy. Once you've absorbed these, be sure to check out my previous entries here, here, herehere, here, here and here. And as always, you're welcome.

OverwatchHeroes never die,
but Mercy does it a lot.
Want to fly away...

Killing Floor 2
More waves of zombies,
They're naked but could be worse.
All their junk fell off.

Fight For The Top 50 2016 – Anatomy

about X hours ago from
Fight For The Top 50 2016 – Anatomy

Each year, we do our best to keep up with the games released so that we can make educated decisions when it comes to accurately rewarding titles a spot on our annual Top 50 list. Unfortunately, while the early months can be simple to stay on top of, we can quickly find ourselves buried under the avalanche of games as the year progresses, and several games wind up not having enough people organically playing it to argue for their spot on the Top 50. That's why we've done the Fight for the Top 50 each year in the lead up to our Game of the Year discussions. The goal is for a Game Informer editor to challenge another one to play a game they think was underplayed by the rest of the staff that deserves consideration for the Top 50.

Even for a horror game, Anatomy is strange. Rather than escaping from a haunted house or insane asylum, you play as someone skulking around a house with no plan to leave. The game plays out as a VHS tape, with all the fuzzy edges and static lines that entails. Instead of giving you breathing room between horrific encounters with monsters, it asks that you consent to delving back into its unsettling brand of weird over and over, trying to make sense of what’s going on around you.