Foody fun with Video Game Bread


There's a game currently in design which is accumulating crazy levels of support over every media outlet going, it's been a while in the making and what is you might ask this eagerly anticipated story?Making a sandwich. Realistically mind you - that's why it's taking so long, on various posts the creator have stated they want it to be as realistic as they can make it from the way it falls to the ground and every other aspect of simply making sandwiches. Intrigued, I stopped by to ask a few questions.


First of all, what was your inspiration for creating a game about bread? Why making sandwiches?

The idea came on a lark. The original idea for this game was much smaller & limited. It was gonna be a game where you'd play out the life of a sandwich until it's untimely demise.

What has been the easiest and most difficult aspects of creating the game so far?

The easiest part is making all the art. The hardest part is programming, I'm trying to learn how to code so that's the hardest obstacle haha.


What gaming platform are you planning to release it on when it's complete?

I'm currently aiming for PC, but I'm considering other platforms too.

Have you created any other video games apart from Video Game Bread?

Well. I've worked on a couple of games for game jams, but they're not that great lmao.


Finally, when do you think it will be released?

That's really hard to say. I'd like for there to be something done some time this year.

With over 30,000 followers on Video Game Bread on Tumblrthe mere idea of this currently unfinished game is taking the indie gamers by storm, after all, who doesn't love a good sandwich?

Over and out, Mel

Transistor Review


People will undoubtedly remember the Xbox 360 as the machine that got online gaming right. Gamers of tomorrow will talk about Gears of War rodeo runs, late night sessions of Firefight in Halo, and the time their console red ring of death’d just as they were about to get through Modern Warfare on Veteran. It is the console that brought the first person shooter to the consoling masses, stole Sony’s killers apps and for better or worse, achievement points.

For me however, the Xbox 360 will always be the console on which I played Bastion.

Released in 2011 by Supergiant Games, Bastion was an Action Role-Playing Game that featured a solid combat system, unique narration point and a stunning world that formed around the player’s very eyes. Bastion took the best of both Western and Japanese RPGs, put them in a blender and out came a dynamic combat system, an isometric perspective and enough charm to see it win and receive nominations for many coveted awards.

Almost 3 years later, on May 20th 2014 Supergiant Games released their Sophomore effort, Transistor on Sony’s Playstation 4 and Steam. Would this be the arrival of a soon to be revered RPG?

Transistor sees the player take the role of Red, a famous musician from the city of Cloudbank, who has been robbed of her voice by a mysterious organisation known as The Camerata. Armed with the eponymous Transistor, Red must fight her way through the city of Cloudbank, defeating The Camerata’s robotic forces known as The Process, in order to find answers and seek justice.

The game’s narrative is however, somewhat of a fragmented mess. While a large chunk of the game’s story is narrated to the player by The Transistor, this will only reveal the surface of the game’s plot. To understand the game’s story to the fullest it allows you will require scouring the city of Cloudbank for Terminals, viewpoints and using the game’s combat mechanics to their fullest.

While it can be argued that this really encourages exploration of both the game’s world and it’s possibilities of play, it may leave a player in search of more casual experience at a bit of a loss as to what is going on. Though what may frustrated the more dedicated player, is that even after putting in the extra time to discover these scraps of narrative, there are still some questions left unanswered or open to personal interpretation.

This is not to say that the game does not have a story to tell however, and while Red herself is a slant on a stereotypical silent protagonist, the game is certainly heartfelt. The juxtaposition of a silence singer with a talking sword also offers an interesting dynamic, similar to the narrator in Bastion over it’s lead character, The Kid, meaning the game never slows down it’s pace for stories sake.

As you would expect after Bastion, Transistor is a visual delight. The city of Cloudbank feels lived in because of the attention to detail in it’s visual design. Cloudbank is a Cyber-Punk utopia that at times seems to draw inspiration from Blade Runner’s futuristic Los Angeles and even Final Fantasy 7’s Midgar. Though this feeling of beauty comes with a cost. Despite it’s wonderful rendering, the level design feels slightly linear in it’s approach. While the game called out to be explored, there are not many reasons or options available to do so. Most of the more hidden terminals require simply trekking past an exit or just a little further around a corner, which while it scratches the itch for explorations that RPG players crave, it feels like a wasted opportunity.

However, despite these shortcomings, Transistor’s combat system is a thing of beauty. Using ‘Functions’ the player is able to customise their fight style how they see fit. There are multiple melees, ranged and burst attacks, as well as Functions such as ‘Help()’ which allows you to call upon a dog to aid you in combat. While this may seem straightforward enough and one function be equipped to each of the shape buttons on the controller, the real depth begins to surface when the player unlocks the ability to upgrade other functions with functions, but also to have ‘passive’ functions active, which effect all of your arsenal. Suffice to say, that by the time new game plus roles around, Red is somewhat of God with the correct functions in place, which feels rather rewarding.

Just like with the Narrative, there isn’t much explanation on the combat system, and Supergiant treat the gamer like an adult, letting them figure out these things for themselves, which adds a level of personal satisfaction in figuring out how to stack functions to the best effect. You are only limited by Red’s ‘Memory’, which act as her skill points for functions. These functions can be swapped in and out from the game’s numerous save points, meaning experimentation is encouraged as painlessly as possible.

The combat itself can be customised further and either played like it’s predecessor in real time, or strategically with it’s ‘turn’ system, which allows you to plot the course of a turn like a strategy RPG, you can move around the battlefield, deal massive damage and avoid enemies, but as ‘turn’ suggests, you are left powerless until the turn bar refills. The ability to change this on the fly really helps to make Transistor an enjoyable experience, allowing you to change from aggressive to strategic at the press of the ‘R2’ button, without any hassle from menus or settings.

Another winning aspect of Transistor’s combat is that when Red dies, the player is not presented with a game over screen, but simply loses on of the player’s functions for a limited amount of time, meaning the tables can still be turned, but with a less powerful arsenal, resulting in teaching the player caution and patience are the keys to succeeding.

While enemies come in all shapes and sizes, all with unique functions and attack patterns of their own, there is a substantial degree of pallet swapping going on. While it’s perhaps not noticeable first time through, this means the enjoyment of the New Game + can be slightly hindered by a lack of variety in enemies, meaning the end game enemies spawn by the dozen rather than sparingly as they did on the first shot. It is also by mixing and matching these functions in various forms that more of the story is revelled to the player in a similar way to reading Dark Soul’s item descriptions, enriching the experience.

There is also the option at any time to add a ‘limiter’ to the game, which acts similarly to Idols in Bastion. Equipping these limiters can do anything from limiting Red’s memory to making enemies hit twice as hard. Playing with all 10 activated might test your ability to play the game, but rest assured it will mean a lot of retries.

Similar to Bastion’s Proving Grounds, there are also many tests the player can try to unlock music from the game’s excellent score. Away from the game’s main area, player’s can explore the practice test to hone your Functions as well as several to challenge you. The speed test to kill enemies within a time limit, Performance test’s your combat abilities with limited Functions, while Agency sees you face off against something else all together.

Another of the game’s highlights is it’s score. Darren Korb and vocalist Ashley Barrett really make the game. Each number creates an ambience that sets the emotional tone for Transistor beat for beat, With such a rich variety of instrumental and vocal tracks, such as the launch trailer’s ‘All become One’, it will be fantastic to see what Korb achieves next time around. Barrett’s humming to this score creates not only creates a haunting atmosphere, but gives Red an emotional side that a voiceless protagonist would otherwise be lacking. Without speaking a line, Barrett allows Red to say more than words ever could.

Transistor is solid game that asides from a few short comings, supersedes Bastion and many of the game’s spiritual predecessors. It’s innovative battles, beautiful visuals and simply breathtaking score are something any fan of Action RPGs should be clambering to experience.  While more casual players may be put off by it’s seemingly sporadic storytelling, it’s important to know that it doesn’t detract from the fun of the game. While more experienced players may want to know going in, there are a lot of blanks to fill in themselves or on message boards. Overall, clocking in at around 5 hours for a single play-though, Transistor will leave you begging for more and perhaps a little emotionally engaged, which when considering the genre’s past, is perhaps more than we could have hoped for. But it’s a little sad knowing that with a pinch more narrative and a little more exploration to bring the game unto the bar raised by it’s combat, this game would be flawless. It will however leave you excited for the studio’s next title, and until then, I’ll see you in The Country.

Salvaged ramps up production - support at kickstarter


salvaged logo Salvaged launches on Kickstarter! You can see Dave's article right here surrounding our thoughts on the game, along with our video interview that was filmed at this years Gadget Show Live.

Opposable Games ramps up production on dual-screen IP Salvaged following positive showing at GDC and EGX Rezzed

Monday 7th April 2014, Bristol, UK. Experienced indie development studio Opposable Games today announces that it is stepping up production of its dual-screen original IP Salvaged, following a highly successful showing at GDC and EGX Rezzed in March. The real-time tactical action game for PC is set in a deadly sci-fi universe and features unique dual-screen play, powered by Opposable's proprietary OneTouchConnect technology. Preview builds are now being made available for the first time.

Described by GameZone as “one of the smartest tactical action games we've seen since X-COM” and by Eurogamer as “a cool, multi-screen take on the tactical action genre”, Salvaged is now slated for an Early Access release in June 2014 and a full release in Q4 2014. The game lets players take command of a Remote Interstellar Salvage Crew (RISC) as they explore and fight their way through abandoned space hulks in a procedurally generated, infinite universe. As the RISC Commander, the player directs the action using their tablet or smart phone while experiencing the impact of their orders through the eyes of their squad on the main screen. This unique dual-screen control system is the core of the game experience, combining the flexibility and intuitiveness of a touch screen with the intensity and immediacy of a modern PC title.

The game idea was originally conceived in 2012 following the release of Opposable's award-winning dual-screen racing game Clockwork Racers. Driven by the belief that multi-screen gaming can be a powerful and engaging experience, the studio has taken a disciplined and focused approach over the subsequent two years to build a team with the size and experience to tackle development on Salvaged. Running in parallel, it has also used its successful work-for-hire portfolio to fund creation of its cross-platform device connection technology OneTouchConnect.

Late in 2013, Salvaged won out against stiff competition in the IC Tomorrow second screen contest run by the Technology Strategy Board and backed by Sony. This initial injection of funding and support is enabling comprehensive user testing and the integration of face tracking technology to hone the gameplay, ensuring that both screens play an integral role in the player's experience.

Committed to sharing their learning through development and encouraging others to embrace multi-screen games, Opposable have worked closely with a number of developers and have also made OneTouchConnect available via the Unity Asset Store.

Recent feedback from the press and public has shown a strong interest in both the game concept and the technology, as MD Ben Trewhella explains: “The response we received to the game at GDC and Rezzed was overwhelming so we're confident that the time is right to ramp up production. We've believed in the potential of multi-screen gaming for many years but it was really rewarding to see so many of the public so enthusiastic about both the technology and Salvaged itself. We're looking forward to sharing the finished game with our fast-growing fan-base.”

opposable gamesCommitted to sharing their learning through development and encouraging others to embrace multi-screen games, Opposable have worked closely with a number of developers and have also made OneTouchConnect available via the Unity Asset Store.

Recent feedback from the press and public has shown a strong interest in both the game concept and the technology, as MD Ben Trewhella explains: “The response we received to the game at GDC and Rezzed was overwhelming so we're confident that the time is right to ramp up production. We've believed in the potential of multi-screen gaming for many years but it was really rewarding to see so many of the public so enthusiastic about both the technology and Salvaged itself. We're looking forward to sharing the finished game with our fast-growing fan-base.”

To support its new development schedule and to enable more of the team to move their focus away from work-for-hire, Opposable are also announcing today that they're launching a crowd-funding campaign for the game on Kickstarter which will go live on Monday 14th April.

For more information on Salvaged, please visit www.SalvagedGame.com, or follow the game via social media at: Twitter: @SalvagedGame, Facebook: www.facebook.com/SalvagedGame For more information on Opposable Games, please visit www.OpposableGames.com To support the Salvaged Kickstarter campaign, please visit the official campaign page here: salvagedgame.com/pledge

Titanfall Xbox 360 Review


When anyone utters the words ‘makers of Call of Duty’ and ‘giant robots’ in the same sentence, it’s only understandable that people get a little bit excited. Say what you will about Activision’s first person shooter franchise, but with a total of over 120 million units sold, Call of Duty’s reach and influence in the sphere of gaming is hard to deny. So large an influence perhaps, that Respawn Entertainment, the EA funded studio founded by Jason West & Vince Zampella, previously of Infinity Ward, must have felt the pressure of the colossal franchise they helped create, weighing down on them from the get go. The hypothetical question must have one day arisen – How do you take on a colossus? The answer seemed to be to simply bring a Titan. If anyone could do it, then who better than Respawn?

It was under the weight of this expectation that Titanfall, Respawn’s new futuristic FPS title hit the markets. The game’s packaging boasts of the title’s 60+ awards at E3, merely a feather in the cap of a game riding high on the shoulders of an aggressive marketing campaign and promised a next generation experience like no other. But after Titanfall’s March 11th release for the Xbox One & PC, reviews were mixed to say the least. Critics expected the second coming of the modern first person shooter, but instead received a competent game that could never live up to, the carefully orchestrated symphony of hysteria-inducing hype that told of it’s coming.

But a month after the games initial release, when the dust has settled and Titanfall finds itself on Microsoft’s Xbox 360, what then? When those expecting the next generation of gaming, have seen the emperor naked of new clothes, can Titanfall be judged solely on its merits as a console first person shooter?

For starters, let us look at Titanfall’s campaign. After promising a single player-like experience in a multiplayer setting, Respawn hit their first hurdle. By making the game online only, Titanfall polarized potential players from the very beginning. While only 18% of players completed Call of Duty Black Ops’ campaign, it is still a very daunting thought not to have a campaign in a full retail title.

To some, the idea of paying full price for a multiplayer game, in a constantly shifting multiplayer environment and especially with a new IP, is a scary thought. What if months down the line, nobody is playing Titanfall online? Then the game has a sell by date, a prospect that alarms most gamers who primarily vote with their wallets.

These grievances aside, what Titanfall offers in terms of a campaign is an ambitious idea, but on the whole will leave gamers wanting. For all its promises of user’s creating their own story, Titanfall’s campaign is simply Halo 4’s Spartan Ops. Small episodic chunks of story, which consist of nothing more than an in-engine cut scene and audio logs played over combat.

As for length, while the campaign is split into two opposing factions, the surprisingly well armed Frontier Militia, and the seeming evil Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation, both of which offer the perspective of each army and their struggles, not a lot changes. Win or lose, the story plods along to its slow and unsatisfactory conclusion. Though the story the game tells isn’t the most fascinating, its absence in the game’s regular multiplayer modes in noticeable, and even though the writing isn't the best, the contextualization of why these armies is fighting, feels strangely gratifying.

While only two of the game’s six multiplayer modes are playable here (Attrition, the game’s Team Deathmatch & Hardpoint, i.e. three point King of the Hill), experiencing them as part of the campaign is arguably more fun than without it.

In the campaign, the player takes the roll of a pilot, the game’s customisable soldier. Here a player experiences the game’s custom load outs and perks, as you would expect from any modern day shooter. However what Titanfall gets right is that like Halo, the weapon’s the player starts with are perfectly capable tools to play the game. The player is not penalized for their newness like in Call of Duty, or their lack of Premium Membership like in Battlefield 4. Even when fighting the game’s titular Titans, players start off with the right gun’s to make scrap metal of the metal mechs with ease, if they have enough skill to use them.

Where Titanfall’s game play differs from most modern FPS games is that in campaign and multiplayer, the player meets not only enemy players but AI with varying levels of skill, all of which gives XP. These AI make the seemingly limited 6 vs 6 experience feel on par with Battlefield 4’s 64 player Multiplayer. But more than simply filling up the numbers, these bots speed up the generation of the game’s selling point but also its biggest missed opportunity: The Titans.

Titans are mobile suits that offer the player further levels of customization of play, more powerful weapons and a personal robot killing machine to boot. Player’s can either pilot these Titans, or simply allow them to roam around the map, AI controlled killing enemy players for you. While Titan’s can be used strategically, using them guard a base in Hardpoint, or roam around covering your back in Attrition, I often found myself letting my Titan simply roam around scoring kills for me, as in an otherwise fast paced, no-nonsense FPS, Titan’s really slow things down. It’s both a blessing and a curse – the Titan’s speed restrictions stop them from being Battlefield’s Tanks and Choppers and dominating infantry, however it also derails what should be the selling point of the game, Titan vs. Titan action. Why would you ride a slow moving, large target into battle, when you can dispatch a Titan more efficiently with basic Anti-Titan weaponry? Especially when wall-running and the traversing of the environment is encouraged as a pilot?

The game’s Multiplayer options outside of campaign are also a mixed bag. While the game touts six modes, as well as Attrition & Hardpoint, there’s Last Titan Standing (a Titan vs. Titan mode which suffers from the pre-mentioned problems), Capture the Flag & Pilot Hunter (Team Deathmatch without AI kills counting).

The sixth mode is called ‘Variety Pack’ and is essentially a mixture of all other game modes. When you consider that Pilot hunter is simply a variant of Attrition, meaning the game only launched with four game types, Titanfall’s cracks start to show.

While there are certainly fun reasons to play Titanfall, and the game’s introduction of mechanics such as burn cards, cards that can be used for one spawn to deal extra damage or gain more XP, are fun, but they aren't essential to the experience. Despite supposedly being in development since 2010, Titanfall almost feels like a Beta game. With limited unlocks, the prospect that game modes that would have otherwise been on disk being included in downloadable content, as well as a seemingly limited lifespan. While there is the possibility of unlocking Generations, the game’s equivalent of prestige, this offers little but bragging rights, and makes Titanfall a great game that feels half cooked.

All promises aside, all hype deflated, Titanfall is the start of what proves to be a great first person shooter franchise. Despite its short comings, it is a strong basis for Respawn to build off of. The mechanics are there, they just need tweaking. The things it’s borrowed from other games, be it Mirrors Edge’s parkour or Left for Dead’s fighting for survival until extraction, are perhaps the right ones. That when combined with solid shooting and balanced weapons, feel new and exciting. While Titanfall doesn't deliver on its promise of a next gen experience like no other, but it’s certainly a fun, highly playable shooter that shows glimmers of greatness.