Shoot ’em Up fans should be really happy to learn that Degica Games has updated its Shooting Love 200X compilation for a brand-new 2016 release via Steam. Degica has produced many fantastic shooters over the years, and this year’s offerings in the new Shooting Love 20XX set are really great!:
- SHMUPs Skill Test (June 9, 2016)
- Minus Zero (June 16, 2016)
- TRIZEAL Remix (July 7, 2016)
- EXZEAL (July 14, 2016)
I’ve really enjoyed playing all of these and I can say that they range from short one-and-done experiences (SHMUPs Skill Test and Minus Zero) to crazy, action-packed blasting romps. Minus Zero, though a rather brief experience, is fairly unique in how it operates because it’s a targetting and missile barrage game more than anything else.
The prices on these range from $1.99 on the low end (Minus Zero) to $11.99 for the two “Zeal” games, so they should go fairly easy on your wallet. If you’re looking for some fun classic arcade action in your late-summer, you certainly should look into these!
A very good friend of mine recently shared a copy of Necropolis with me because he had been given more than one copy to put out coverage on and wanted to take a peek at the game’s multiplayer aspects. Knowing absolutely nothing about this one, I figured I’d give it a shot by downloading it and firing it up with him and I have to say that it was most certainly very much worth my time!
Necropolis just released on July 12, 2016 and comes to us from Harebrained Schemes and Bandai Namco for the PC via Steam. This one is a third-person procedural dungeon delving experience with a uniquely dark cel-shaded art style and an interesting story that we can only piece together by playing the game. Death in the game is most certainly permanent, and each time you die (or your party is totally defeated) a new dungeon is generated for you to explore. However, dying is not without its merits on some level as at the end of each run, your score will determine how many tokens you get and these can be spent on purchasing new runes (with static stat upgrades), costumes, and consumables! All of that definitely plays into the addictive “this next run is totally the one!” sort of mindset!
Crafting is something we didn’t really take a look at this time around, but it most definitely is part of the game. You can play Necropolis on your own or with up to a party of four total players, and what’s really interesting is that the multiplayer is drop-in-and-go, so there’s not much required to get it started.
This one is going for $29.99 on Steam right now, but if you are a fan of roguelike adventures that you can play with friends, it’s certainly worth looking into. There are a few bugs that the devs need to iron out though, but these should be fixed up soon with upcoming patches!
So, yesterday I mentioned the fact that I had recently cleared out all of the videos (again!) from my YouTube channel and that if you were to visit the channel right now, you’d find it totally empty of any content. I figured I owed you guys a bit of an explanation on that fact, so here we go!
When I rebooted my YouTube channel in June, I did so for several different reasons. On one hand, consistency is important to me. Looking back at the archived history of my channel (which dated back to 2012), the video quality on several levels varied wildly between 2012 and 2016. A while before June, I had gone and purged some older videos I felt no longer represented the direction of the channel, but in some ways I also felt that by deleting those videos it messed up the flow of content. I had this idea that videos that were part of a meta-series needed to be labeled with a number, so deleting content messed with that flow and left large gaps. Video production also in the months leading up to the June 2016 reboot had begun to feel more like an obligation than a joy. I felt like I was having to force myself to play certain games and record videos of them to meet the needs of PR contacts or game developers, and so I would get those videos done (regardless of how good or bad I personally felt they turned out) and published in order to meet those expectations and to keep the channel feeling relevant. As you might suspect, that came at the cost of doing some series that I personally wanted to do.
It’s been a while since I actually took some real time off that wasn’t spent traveling to visit family or anything like that, and so from July 17 until July 24 I will be taking some time off to relax and recuperate, taking a short trip (maybe two) and generally just enjoying some good quality time off. During this window, you probably won’t hear a whole lot from me, but I’ll definitely try to keep up with some occasional Twitter posting or putting out a couple written articles if I find some down time in the evening or whatnot to do so.
This time off is certainly a good thing given some recent events. I really shouldn’t get into too many of the details here, but suffice it to say that my work with the military has been very trying of late. We are going through a bit of a regime change on several levels in August and September and even though the previous leadership isn’t even quite out the door yet this has led to a lot of drama when it comes to the incoming general already having chosen some key staff positions and the fact that a lot of very unpopular decisions have been made lately. I’ve been kind of caught in the middle of the crossfire during this, and it’s forced my hand on a couple levels. Ultimately, we will just have to see how all that stuff plays out, but I think my point is that it’s just been very mentally draining for me the past week or two dealing with this stuff.
Also, this time off comes with some very nice timing because it will coincide with an interim period for my YouTube channel before I relaunch it (early-August?). You might have noticed that my channel suddenly became devoid of any content quite recently, and I assure you that was by design and my channel did not get shut down or anything like that. I actually plan to go into a much more detailed discussion in a post I’ll set for tomorrow (July 17) that will get into the reasons behind the new channel reboot. I think you’ll get to hear some good behind the scenes discussion in that post that will make you think a bit about the creative process, what it means to put out journalistic content, and how you have to balance fun with professionalism. In turn, this will lead into my reasons for the reboot and what format I want for the channel going forward.
In short though – please don’t unsubscribe!!
Anyway, I hope everyone reading this has had a fantastic summer so far! I look forward to hearing about any fun things on your end!
The other day, I was reading about AMD’s announcement of two new cards for their upcoming RX 400 series of graphics cards and one of the commenters asked what the deal was with all the rainbow sashes, ribbons, and everything else. He even went as far as to ask if Lisa Su (AMD’s President and CEO) and some of the other presenters that day were “soapbox warriors” for the LGBT community.
Seriously? Did this person not bother to read the news from the past 24 hours?
The recent announcements about the XBOX One S and the “Project Scorpio” at this year’s E3 made me start reflecting a lot on the way console technology is really starting to mirror the PC gaming field. And, ultimately, it makes sense: back in the early-2000s the PlayStation 2 and XBOX were getting touted as being “computer game consoles,” and in many years since then gaming and computer technology has improved at an exponential rate. When new video game consoles come out, they often rival mid-ranged gaming computers of their time, with hardware meant to deliver smooth gaming experiences for several years to come.
Yet, when it comes to PC gaming, there’s the traditional “tick-tock” cycle that happens with computer technology, where on one year of the swing of the virtual pendulum a new graphics card or CPU chipset gets released, and on the next year of the cycle a hardware upgrade/refresh occurs, ironing out the issues of the first release and adding in more functionality. Regardless though of whether you get an early-adopter or refresh version of a component, usually you are guaranteed at least a few years of enjoyment before it becomes terribly outdated, depending on what you want to use it for.
Somehow, I seem to have gotten into the whole crazy, twin-stick shoot ’em up genre of games, and this certainly was not intentional! It just seems like some of the more interesting small-studio games that have crossed my virtual desk in recent months have fallen into this category, and being a relatively equal-opportunity gamer, I have given them a try and most have been a lot of fun. Kick Ass Commandos was certainly an interesting, unique one I looked at not that long ago, but now I’ve got another fun offering!
Dual Core is a futuristic twin-stick shooter from Gray Fin Studios, having seen its full release on Steam on May 26, 2016. The game is set in 2147 on the Europa Space Station where two robots awaken from hibernation to find that the station has suffered a horrendous fate while they were in stasis. The two embark on a mission to blast a bunch of baddies (robots, aliens, and more!) and uncover what really befell the colony, but it seems as if staying alive will be the greater priority for them!
What’s neat about this one is that although the gameplay is pretty crazy and fun, really coming to a head in both the Arcade (pure SHMUP fun) and co-op gameplay modes, Dual Core also boasts a story mode that takes you on a mission to discover what led to the colony’s fate, complete with action and some fun RPG elements as well. So, even if you aren’t into co-op gameplay or pure action, there’s something for most players here.
Eventually, I may come back and do a gameplay sample of this one, but for now, I wanted to get some info out on it so you all can check it out! After all, it is only $9.99 on Steam!