PC/Mac/Linux • According to Steam, over the past week I’ve played Factorio for 31 hours. That may not seem like a lot to gaming diehards, but we’re talking about a guy with three kids who is forced to spend most of his waking hours away from a keyboard. 31 hours in a week on my laptop, playing games, is simply unheard of. Even games like Civ or Cities: Skylines haven’t drawn that kind of devotion from me in the past few years. In fact, I’d have to go back to pre-kid days when I’d spend every night playing World of Warcraft while my wife travelled for her job. Yes, I was a really cool cat back then, too. The thing with Factorio is that I haven’t even scratched the surface. I suddenly understand why my kids like Minecraft so much.
PC (now), Mac/Linux (when it reaches Steam) • Did you play with Legos as a kid? Did you build elaborate spacecraft and make them fly around and fight each other? Do you have Legos around now, you know, for “your kids?” If you answer “yes” to those questions (as I do), have I got a game for you.
iOS Universal, PC/Mac/Linux • With everyone already hip-deep into Warhammer Quest 2, I’d like to remind you there is life outside of the dungeon. For example, I dropped the kids off at school this morning and then went home and fell asleep on the couch. Can’t do that in WHQ2! While meeting my wife for lunch, I ran over a couple traffic cones in a construction area and dragged them under my minivan for about 2.5 miles. Not only did it make my minivan-driving self look cool, but you can’t do that in WHQ2! I also downloaded a new game from the App Store, Halcyon 6: Starbase Commander. That’s something we can all do, but you can’t do it in WHQ2!
PC/Mac/Linux • Over the weekend our intrepid reporter, Zac, mentioned a title he’d been playing called Dungeons 3. Having never heard of either Dungeons or Dungeons 2, I assumed that this was the first game in a series but Realmforge added a “3” to the title to make it seem more seasoned. My assumption turned out to be incorrect, however, and there is a Dungeons and Dungeons 2, further confirming that I’m an utter dunce. Jumping into Dungeons 3 this weekend made me a little upset that I only discovered the series now. I’ve wanted a new Dungeon Keeper for ages, and it’s been there, under my nose, all along.
iPad, Android Tablet • Back in April we mentioned that the mobile version of Prison Architect from Introversion and Paradox had soft launched in the Netherlands. Since then it’s launched in a few other places–Sweden and Australia–but I don’t live in those places so who cares, right? Stately Play is nothing if not all about me. MEEEEEEEEEE! What we really want is the full worldwide launch so I can do my Warden Norton impression wherever, whenever I want. Today, Paradox let us know that it’s coming. Soon.
PC/Mac • RimWorld is a colony building and survival simulation game that has everything you’d expect from the genre. You’ll act as the architect for a new colony and guide its residents to ever greater levels of survivability, self-sufficiency, and success. This includes zoning the settlement area for residential buildings, farming, and storage as well as identifying what structures should be built, how electricity should be generated, and what tools of production, furniture, and artwork should be used. There’s also the usual research function to build out a technology tree and open up new options. What’s cool about RimWorld is not that it hits these hallmarks of base-building and survival games. It certainly does. It’s not that it does it really well or better than most—though this is also true. What really makes RimWorld so good–I had to force myself to stop playing–are two things: a true open-world style and a relatively unique story-infused narrative.
You’ve crash landed on a strange planet and need a plan to survive. There’s a couple different ways you can go. There’s the Mark Watney way—eking out an existence thanks to potatoes fertilized by your own feces. Alternatively, you could build a massive, sprawling, and fully interconnected factory complex using your off-the-charts engineering know how. Which do you choose?