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.
PC/Mac, Switch • Since the moment we first saw Into the Breach, Subset Games‘ follow-up to the still incredible FTL, we’ve been waiting to play it on our phones or, at least, tablets. For a long while it existed only on PC but a Mac version finally appeared last month and, today, it made the leap to mobile…on Nintendo Switch.
Welcome to what may become a regular SP Sunday-night feature, if you’re in the US (more like second breakfast or elevensies time in NZ). I’ve always fancied myself a decidedly non-prime hours horror host, in the vein of Vampira, Elvira, and Commander USA. Don’t remember Commander USA? Just imagine Watchmen’s The Comedian unconvincingly faking enthusiasm for El Santo movies and “drawing on” his hand with his cigar. I asked editorial for a wardrobe budget, but all I got back was a series of farty noises, so just imagine me in a LBD and a smoking jacket, wearing a wig stolen from a community theatre production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, sitting in a ridiculously oversized Gothic armchair next to a roaring fireplace (burning official strategy guides and AOL diskettes, ‘natch) and cradling a coffee mug bigger than my head in my arms with a degree of tenderness usually reserved for newborn babies and Alpha Edition Magic: the Gathering cards. Got it? Good, let’s go.
PC, PS4, XBox One • There’s an inbound Steam summer sale bearing six-two-two-carom-one-eight, Statelies. You know what that means? That means, with any luck, Battlestar Galactica Deadlock might be had at a lovely discount, alongside the most recent and most wonderful DLC, The Broken Alliance. That is, if you’ve not already played it. And if not, here’s impetus in the form of an internet-grade list as to why Deadlock is worth a punt.
PC/Mac • What is your favourite Battlemech? Is it the 100 ton Atlas, king of the battlefield with it’s death’s head cockpit? A bit on the nose, don’t you think? How about the Zeus or the Battlemaster, each titans in their own right? Perhaps the more stately Catapult, bristling with Long Range Missiles (LRMs), or the fragile but devious Firestarter? I’ve fallen in love with the Shadow Hawk all over again. Sitting at the high end of Medium weight-class, it’s a lot zippier than its heavy cousins, especially when kitted out with jump jets. The Shadow Hawk is a another Battletech classic, a mech that literally punches above its weight class, with melee and Death from Above (DA) damage that many heavier mechs might envy. Behemoth’s Shadow Hawk gives up long-range weaponry for more intense medium-close range firepower and heavier armour, and it’s cherry, only the best ++ and +++ parts for Behemoth’s ride.
PC/Mac • It’s got tanks and it’s turn-based, so there’s no reason for us not to be excited to play the latest iteration of Battle Fleet from Mythical City Games. Whereas the old Battle Fleets centered on, well, fleets, this latest takes the combat inland and puts it on treads. Battle Fleet: Ground Assault has arrived for PC/Mac today and it’s on sale to boot.
PC/Mac • It was my first year at Gen Con, four or five years ago, when we meandered over to the Harebrained Schemes booth to cover their miniatures/app-based game, Golem Arcana. While we touched on that, they were far more interested in showing us something that was only in the planning stages at that point: a return to digital of the classic miniatures game, BattleTech. We watched it grow year after year with our annual Gen Con visits only to hear last year that it had been picked up by Paradox, the company that can do no wrong. [Dave has been angling for a Paradox sponsorship for awhile now (unsuccessfully). He’s still completely unbiased. :insert rolling-eye emoji here: -ed.] Yesterday, thanks to the hard work of our citizen journalists, we learned that it’s time to start flexing your mech-driving finger–not a real thing but I’m not smart enough to come up with a better visual–because BattleTech is coming to PC/Mac on April 24.
PC/Mac • Back in 2014 Mythical City Games released a turn-based military sim onto Steam and mobile called Battle Fleet 2. Some guy named Owen reviewed it back then and summed everything up with three stars, whatever that means. I could go and read the thing but, let’s face it, Owen’s writing is way over my head. An Owen metaphor, “A gruesome struggle of life and death becomes a badminton match played with high explosive shuttlecocks.” My metaphor, “A gruesome struggle of life and death becomes raccoons eating garbage on a Saturday night in my driveway while listening to the Original Broadway Cast recording of Cats.” See? He’s just way better at this than I’ll ever be. Anyway, Mythical City is back with Battle Fleet 2’s sequel that, due to a change in theme, isn’t simply Battle Fleet 3. That’s right, instead of steering mighty warships we’re driving nimble juggernauts of destruction: tanks. Welcome to Battle Fleet: Ground Assault.
PC/Mac/Linux • Remember when Kurt Russell dipped that hot wire into everyone’s blood sample in The Thing and Palmer’s blood squeals and jumps out of the petrie dish? That was pretty great. Okay, so that has nothing to do with Flash Point: Fire Rescue but I was trying to remember anything about Backdraft for my intro and couldn’t, so I went to the first Kurt Russell movie I could think of instead. How different can movies be when the main character is Kurt Russell’s hair? Anyway, the cooperative board game Flash Point: Fire Rescue is now available on Steam. Or something. Sorry, I’m still thinking about Kurt’s curly locks.