PC (for now) • Last year we’d gotten used to Asmodee Digital pumping out so many titles it felt as if a new one arrived each week or so. This year has been a different story. While they’ve had a number of releases (Onitama is fairly fantastic), most of the Asmodee news has focused on the anticipation surrounding two huge board game ports set to release this year: Scythe and Terraforming Mars. Scythe made the leap to Steam last month so all our focus turned to the, hopefully, imminent release of TM. Without a public beta, it’s been tough to discern just when it might be going live, but today we got our answer. We can expect Terraforming Mars to land on Steam for PC on October 17.
iPad, Switch, Xbox, PC/Mac/Linux • I know Darkest Dungeon has both its fans and critics around these parts (I’m steadfastly in the “fan” category), but even the haters can’t deny that the more big-name PC ports we get on iPad, the better. The downside of not being the game’s primary platform, however, comes with the slow pace of getting new content. We’re all still waiting for Aspyr to release the Rise & Fall expansion for Civ VI on iPad, for example. The latest DLC for Darkest Dungeon, the Color of Madness, was unleashed on Steam back in June but those of us who play on our iPads or Switches were left in the lurch, waiting for any news of its appearance on our platform of choice. Today, that news finally broke. The Color of Madness will be coming to all platforms–iPad, console, Switch–on October 11.
iOS Universal • It’s not often that a game trailer arrives and tricks me the way Grimvalor‘s has. I saw the trailer yesterday on Twitter and immediately wondered if this PC game would be making it to Mac and/or mobile so I’d be able to play it. Little did I realize that, no, it’s not for PC or Mac at all. This is an iOS-only game that looks like it stepped right off the bus to Console-ville. Of course, pretty graphics do not a great game make, so let’s take a look what makes the whole thing tick.
iOS Universal, Android • Tinder-esque role-playing roguelike, Meteorfall, landed on the App Store back in January like a…um…hmm, something falling from the sky? Can’t think of a good metaphor. It will come to me at some point, I’m sure. Since its release it’s been the recipient of several updates including the massive (and free) Necrodude update which added a new hero, the titular Necrodude. Yesterday another update crashed into Meteorfall like a…jeez, I really just can’t think of anything. Anyway, it’s called the Demon Update and the changes it makes to the game are on the hefty side.
In case you haven’t heard, Sunless Skies, the sequel to Failbetter Games’ indie hit Sunless Sea, has set course for release on January 31st, the year of her Majesty below 2019. The pitch is “Sail the skies. Betray your Queen. Murder a sun.” Works for me, I’ve wanted to murder a sun ever since I met the !@%$!?! Dawn Machine (falling as it does only behind red honey on my list of things that are actually terrible in Sunless Sea, and that only because the red honey smuggling subplot involves such an intensely personal corruption). I’ve been in on the Sunless Skies alpha and it’s been amazing, watching the world grow from a frustratingly sparse but conceptually fascinating single zone of space to a deep, dark, place, full of wonder and terror, worthy successor to the strange glories of Sunless Sea.
PC/Mac/Linux, Switch • Another interesting announcement during the Nintendo Direct that I didn’t watch came from Paradox, makers of all things epic and real-time. Turns out they’re getting in the Switch game as well and their first (and maybe only?) release is the outstanding city builder, Cities: Skylines. The best part is that it wasn’t a tease announcement. No, they were announcing that the game was out for Switch right then and now.
Switch • There was a “Nintendo Direct” last night and I’m a bit embarrassed to say that, until last night, I had no idea what a “Nintendo Direct” was. I still really don’t. I mean, I guess it’s when they announce a bunch of stuff, but I have no idea where or how I’d go about watching one. Luckily, I don’t care enough to learn, so it all evens out. This morning, however, Asmodee Digital sent me a press release about their Nintendo plans, and I guess I should maybe pay more attention to these Nintendo Direct things. We already knew they were bringing their version of Carcassonne to Switch at some point down the road. Turns out that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Mac/Linux (soon), PC (out now) • When the original Frozen Synapse appeared on the iPad it instantly became one of those “wow” games that you would show off to people who still didn’t grasp what a great game platform the iPad could be. Owen fell in love with its Tron-like graphics and tactical, WEGO turn-based strategy so hard that he finally admitted to sitting on a throne of lies. In other words, it was pretty great. That was 2013, however, and Frozen Synapse has long been relegated to the cloud rather than residing on my tablet. It’s going to stay that way for the foreseeable future, but a new Frozen Synapse is going to be taking up space on my laptop’s hard drive and that’s nearly as good. If you haven’t guessed yet (or not read the headline), Mode 7 has finally released Frozen Synapse 2 for PC.
iOS Universal, Android • The wonderful folk in our forums directed me to some questionable reviews posted on the just released mobile strategy title Chaos Reborn: Adventures. One of them gives the game one star on the sole basis that Julian Gollop, the creator of the original XCOM, created this game and it’s nothing like XCOM. I found this funny as hell because we usually criticize when creators keep redoing the same thing over and over but now Chaos Reborn is being flogged because it’s not just like another game that the designer created 23 years ago. What’s even better is that Chaos Reborn: Adventures is actually a remake of a game that Julian Gollop designed well before the idea of cryssalids ever entered his brain. Anyway, I’m rambling here. The major point to take from all this is that Chaos Reborn: Adventures is now available for both iOS and Android.
Oh boy! Are we going to try something dangerous? Sorry, had to work the reference in there somewhere. Blink and you’ll miss it. Or, at least, “be sick nigh unto death itself with food poisoning and ye shall not see it.” Last week, while my guts were re-staging the storming of the Bastille, Paradox showed off the first live-play session with forthcoming sci-fi 4x game, Age of Wonders: Planetfall. But wait, you say, isn’t Age of Wonders a fantasy series? Not this time, friend, though the video does show off some classic Age of Wonders / fantasy 4x mechanics adapted to sci-fi with grace and aplomb.