By Kevin Kelly

THIEFlogo

A decade has passed since the third and final game in the Thief series, "Thief: Deadly Shadows," was released, and a new generation of gamers who have been raised on consoles and handhelds have no idea what it was like to slink about in the shadows as a master thief named Garrett. Which of course means that it's time for a reboot, or a sequel where the protagonist has been away for a very long time. Thus enters the upcoming "Thief" from Eidos Montreal and Square Enix, which is a little bit of both.

The original "Thief: The Dark Project" actually began life as different different projects with developer Looking Glass Studios, including "Better Red Than Undead," which would have been a 1950s cold-war game with zombies in the Soviet Union and "Dark Camelot," which would have been a backwards retelling of the Camelot tale, with Arthur as the villain and Mordred as the hero. But those two ideas, along with a project called "School of Wizards" eventually morphed into "Thief: The Dark Project," with some development help from Ken Levine.
Read More...

Tags , , , , , , , ,

By Kevin Kelly

LEGOMain

While LEGO has long conquered the realm of real-world toys, they didn't really make a big dent in the video game arena until "LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game" back in 2005. This ushered in an era of minifig-based games featuring licensed properties featuring characters from Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Lord of the Rings, DC Comics, Pirates of the Caribbean, and more, all at the hands of developer Traveller's Tales. Not a bad job of bringing a physical toy to life in a virtual medium that revolves around storytelling.

This trend also shows no signs of slowing down, with TT having already developed seventeen LEGO video game titles, and at GDC we were treated to a brief demo with the newly-announced "LEGO Marvel Super Heroes." While "LEGO Batman: The Videogame" was DC's initial entry into the LEGO video game arena, the sequel, "LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes" was the one that brought in the lion's share of other DC characters, and was TT's first game to feature speaking minifigs instead of pantomime. Marvel isn't making that same mistake, with this title just laying the whole Marvel universe out there for you.
Read More...

Tags , , , ,

By Kevin Kelly

Fuse Key Art

As a video game journalist, it isn't often that you get to sit down with the head of a studio and co-op through a video game with just the two of you. Often, the events we attend feature a big group of writers, all jockeying for sound bites and hands-on time with games, so imagine our surprise when we stepped into a small meeting room and were presented with two gaming setups, and were introduced to Ted Price, the president and CEO of Insomniac Games. He was there to show off "Fuse," the newest game from his company.

Just in case you didn't know, Insomniac has been a powerhouse development studio for Sony, creating games that turned into franchises like "Spyro the Dragon," "Ratchet & Clank," and "Resistance: Fall of Man." But "Fuse," which was originally introduced as "Overstrike"  back in 2010, marks the first time the studio has developed a title for multiple consoles, and it will be out for both PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 this May. It's a third-person shooter, grounded more in the "realistic" universe of the Resistance games. That is, it's not cartoonish, although it is frequently over-the-top. Which is what you will love about it.
Read More...

Tags , , , , , , ,

By Kevin Kelly

INJMain

DC Comics and NetherRealm have crossed paths before although their first meeting was when creative director Ed Boon was working at Midway Studios, and that meeting resulted derailed what would have been the next installment of "Mortal Kombat," and instead became the 2008 fighting game "Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe." While it might not feel like it set the world on fire, the game actually sold almost two million copies, and was on track to have a significant amount of DLC and would have been supported up until the release of "Mortal Kombat" from the then-renamed NetherRealm Studios, due to Midway's financial issues.

If you haven't played the game, the plot revolves around the Mortal Kombat and DC Comic universes colliding, and basically providing an excuse for these characters to fight each other. The fighting in the game was deep, as you would expect with the injection of Boon and his team's DNA, but it seemed to die a quick death after release, probably due again to the Midway issues. But the two teams are joining forces again, and the resulting game, "Injustice: Gods Among Us," is a much richer dive into the lore of DC Comics. Plus, there are no pesky Mortal Kombat characters butting in.

Read More...

Tags , , , ,

By Kevin Kelly

InfiniteMain

Warner Bros and Turbine announced on the first day of GDC that a new multiplayer online battle arena game (MOBA) based on DC Comics properties was on the way, and invited us to spend some time with the game. While it is still in development, what we saw so far was very impressive, especially for diehard DC fans.

Granted, I'm not the world's foremost MOBA player, having only dabbled in "League of Legends" and "Guardians of Middle-Earth." While I found the gameplay in both of those titles intriguing, nothing sucks me in like a DC Comics property. Especially if it includes Captain Marvel, which this game does. Of course, he goes by the moniker Shazam these days, but he still commands the lightning and the thunder, and he's a powerhouse enforcer in "Infinite Crisis".
Read More...

Tags , , ,

Miguel Concepcion

Killer-is-Dead_-23

The more I learn about "Killer Is Dead", the more I think Suda 51 is making his "Mission Impossible 2". In other words, I'm not yet convinced it will present anything new that I haven't seen in his other games, not that's automatically a bad thing. Like John Woo's 2000 film, "Killer Is Dead" feels like a greatest hits collection of  themes, characterizations, and visual stylings of Suda 51's previous works. It calls to mind the assassins of "No More Heroes" and "Killer 7" and the love story of "Shadows of the Damned". More than anything, it feel like the darker sibling of "Lollipop Chainsaw", both in tone and gameplay. This is something I can go for, though I hope the emphasis on thoughtful swordplay implies that "Killer Is Dead" is an improvement over the unremarkable combat of "Lollipop Chainsaw".
Read More...

Tags , ,

By Miguel Concepcion

twd_2

The element of player choice was one of the features that made Telltale Games' "The Walking Dead" one of the most critically acclaimed games of 2012. It was an even more meaningful achievement when this choice-driven game essentially reached the same conclusion for all players. The game succeeds in the choices during the journey and less on the anticipation of the outcome of the choices. One of the more significant choices was during the game's second episode where you had to decide on the fates of Doug and Carley. It was the starting point of the GDC 2013 talk, 'Saving Doug: Empathy, Character, and Choice in The Walking Dead', hosted by "The Walking Dead" creative director, Jake Rodkin and director/writer, Sean Vanaman.  Here were the nine major takeaways from the panel:

Tags , ,

By Kevin Kelly

Myst1

When I was in college at the University of Texas at Austin, "Myst" consumed most of my waking hours for a few weeks, driving me crazy with its puzzles and mysteries. I skipped classes, stayed up late, took copious notes, ignored my friends and barely ate while I struggled to complete this wonderfully maddening game. So, when it was announced that Robyn Miller, representing one half of the brothers Rand and Robyn who created the game, was going to speak at GDC, I knew I would be there. Much has been said about "Myst" in the 20 years since it was introduced in 1993 (!), but the chance to hear about it directly from one of the Millers was too good to pass up.

Two decades have passed since  the game came out, and Robyn took us back to the start, rolling back the clock back to 1988, four years after the introduction of the original Macintosh. Robyn was living in Washington State at the time, and Rand was in Dallas, and he called Robyn with an idea for an "interactive storybook," and with it came an introduction to HyperCard. He started drawing a manhole cover, eventually with a vine growing out of it, and this became "The Manhole," and the first game from Cyan, the company that the brothers founded. What followed was a series of point and click adventures that were aimed at young audiences.

Read More...

Tags ,

By Kevin Kelly

Smart2

Rosa Thomas, a ten-year veteran and Principal Program Manager at Microsoft, spoke at GDC in San Francisco about the SmartGlass experience that Microsoft has been rolling out slowly on the Xbox 360. First announced at E3 last year, Microsoft rolled out the service with Windows 8 this past October, and plans to ramp up what the experience offers in the coming months.

So what is it? On the basic level, SmartGlass is Microsoft's proprietary Second Screen experience that works (currently) in conjunction with the Xbox 360, offering a second screen full of information and functions on the iOS, Android, Windows 8, and Windows Phone. Right now it only works with a handful of games, including "Halo 4" and "Forza Horizon," some of the Xbox 360 video apps, including HBO GO, and a smattering of newly released movies.
Read More...

Tags , , , , , ,

By Joseph Leray

keita

Keita Takahashi is the man behind “Katamari Damacy” and, more recently, “Noby Noby Boy.” After that, he went on to design playgrounds in England, and eventually came to work on TinySpeck’s new defunct MMO, “Glitch.”
Read More...

Tags , ,

©2014 Viacom International Inc. All Rights Reserved. MTV and all related titles and logos are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.