Tag Archives: black forest games

Bubsy’s back in a brand new title

Ratchet & Clank, Crash Bandicoot, Jak & Dexter and now Bubsy. It’s good to be a PS4 owner if you’re a fan of these excellent titles. I remember playing Bubsy when my parents bought my brother and I a PlayStation bundle so I’m pretty happy to see the strange bobcat return to PlayStation in a brand new adventure.

The bobcat hasn’t been seen in his own game since Bubsy 3D, which launched way back in 1996. Bubsy: The Woolies Strike Back sees the troublesome critters steal Bubsy’s most prized possession – The Golden Fleece – and he is back in glorious 2D over 14 levels of witty one-liners.

Rogue Stormers heading to Xbox One shortly

Rogue Stormers

It’s been through a few months of intense development as well as a name change, but finally, Rogue Stormers developer, Black Forest Games is in a position to announce a release date.

So, wait, Rogue Stormers? Well it’s an action-packed 3D co-op platform-shooter. It’s got roguelike and RPG elements with crazy graphics, allowing up to 4 players in on the action at once.

The game will combine run’n’gun gameplay in the Metal Slug style, offering twin-stick controls in an online or couch co-op mode of play. Ravensdale is under threat by the ultimate evil. In order to beat him you must fight your way through seven increasingly challenging levels. If you die, you’ll be back at square one, although any earned perks and packs are yours for keeps, making it a little easier to get back to where you expired.

The game is designed in such a way that allows the levels to be layered and combined to create meaningful combinations with infinite replayability. There will be an ever growing cast of enemies, hazards and loot layered within each chunk, generating incredible diversity. Rogue Stormers will feature tons of different upgrades and weapons that will cause each new session to play in a unique fashion, depending on which weapons or upgrades you pick and get.

Five character classes with their own skills and base weapons are included and as you delve into the vast undercity of Ravensdale, you’ll learn more and more about the history, it’s citizens and the tragic backgrounds of the five heroes who took arms to save it. How you tackle this sprawling city will be the key to saving Ravensdale.

Will you go toe-to-toe with your enemies, block attacks or simply blast everything to smithereens? It’ll be completely up to you when Rogue Stormers comes to your Xbox One from the 7th of October.

Black Forest Games have been busy ahead of the release of Rogue Stormers, playing the game and recording themselves having fun while doing so. Head on over to their YouTube channel for more, or watch the first one, below.

 

Rogue Stormers release delayed

Rogue Stormers

Rogue Stormers has had a rocky start to life as a game. Black Forest Games were forced to change the name of the title, initially monikered Diesel Stormers. The developer changed the name of the title to avoid copyright issues from a well-known clothing brand. Now the title, by the same team who brought you the Giana Sisters games, has experienced a slight delay to it’s Steam release date.

What’s the reasoning behind this extra delay? Well, Black Forest are polishing the title up, nice and bright, ready for a full release. This may then have a knock-on effect for the Xbox One release of this gun and run rogue-like shooter. When could we expect a console release of Rogue Stormers? Black Forest Games are being more than a little bit coy on that one and it hasn’t actually been announced yet.

Black Forest Games’ MD, Adrian Goersch;

We’re using the extra time to make sure Rogue Stormers launches with maximum polish. Our Early Access players know exactly how much content there is in the game and with the final release we’ve added even more. Releasing Rogue Stormers with sub-par game balance was simply not acceptable to us.

This in itself is a little disappointing as I, for one, am looking forward to getting my grubby hands on Rogue Stormers.

The game will feature a four player online or local multiplayer as well as a single player mode. There will be five character classes to guide through procedurally generated levels all featuring random enemy placement. Nothing will be the same as the previous playthrough. Deal with eldritch horrors, orcs, goblins and battlegates bursting with weapons. You’ll also have the opportunity to set of chain-reaction interactions with the environment that may kill both yourself and your enemies.

Have a look at the last Rogue Stormers trailer below, to see what’s got other folk excited about the title.

Black Forest Games haven’t revealed a date for release for Rogue Stormers on Xbox One yet, but we’ll let you know when they do.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners review

Earlier in the year we took a look at upcoming multiplayer speed running title Giana Sisters: Dream Runners, and found its offering of superbly designed, and strikingly detailed levels of thrilling acuity a splendid experience. Dream Runners has now hit digital shelves, but have the few glitches and oddities we found in its preview build been ironed out?

Marvellously it seems they have, and Dream Runners looks, feels and plays superbly. The simple focus of a four player race around a complex, looping level is full of exciting competition, as well as frequent and intense platforming risk/reward decision-making and combat, offering precisely the kind of experience titles of this ilk feed on. It’s a compelling mix that can take hook of a party of players for quite some time, complimented by excellent level design and variety to keep the experience fresh.

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You and up to three additional players take to a level and race around it over endless laps, with racers who fall off the edge of the screen being eliminated and the surviving lone player scoring a point. First to three points wins. Power-ups are strewn across the levels, offering temporary boosts to your character or a weapon to launch against your opponents, meanwhile, a refillable sprint can be charged by passing through certain specific areas of a level, and an intractable fireball ability can boost you forwards and save you from elimination but is also at risk of causing you to bounce unfavourably and hurt your progress just as much; it’s a very clever addition.

Multiple paths subtlety branch within each level offering different obstacles and/or collectible power-ups for you and you foes to compete for, and choosing which path to take as you’re dashing through the level is a curtail aspect of the tactics and strategies you need to consider to win those precious points. Weighing up the risk/reward factors of longer routes for potential power-ups and staying out-of-the-way of your opponents who may launch weapons at you, requires quick thinking, and your initial runs through a level are inevitable going to be full of trial and error as you figure out their layout. It’s wonderfully intense competition, and with nine levels to choose from, all of which are lengthy and complex, learning their optimal routes for each situation is a monumental task.

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Moreover, much like in the previous Giana Sisters title, Twisted Dreams, the environments can be altered dramatically, but instead of being able to change your surroundings at will, you need to run through switches scattered amongst the levels. Doing so not only makes for a visually different aesthetic to the location, but also adds new hazards and obstacles. It’s terrific, and essentially turns the 9 maps into 18.

Unfortunately a couple of issues we picked up on in the preview remain. You’re frequently respawned elsewhere to where the last point was won, not far but significantly enough to confuse you a little. It’s a result of specific spawn points that otherwise prevent you from potentially spawning in terrible locations, so it’s a quirk we can forgive. Helpful arrows are littered around each level to help you stay on course at least, but it’s a visually busy and fast paced setting that can still leave you overwhelmed and confused.

Mind you it’s a stunningly beautiful game, with highly detailed textures throughout and spectacular lighting. Falling of screen and watching the action is almost as rewarding as winning the point. It also runs smoothly with no hint of frame rate issues.

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Local and online options are available for finding players to compete with, either ranked or friendly quick matches. Meanwhile, any empty slots can be filled by bots with the option of multiple difficulty levels for each. The AI is, however, very aggressive even on easy, offering up a stiff challenge that better prepares you for skilled human foes but can also lead to frustration in solo play. Playing with others is certainly the best option, and is tons of fun, especially with friends.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is a terrific multiplayer title. The level design is impressively complex and beautiful, offering a challenging and diverse set of locations and obstacles that are enhanced even further by the environment switching mechanic. It’s strongest when played with others but is content rich enough to keep solo players happy if speed running takes your fancy. It is possibly a bit too complex with its level design to appeal to everyone, but it’s an impressive title nonetheless.

Thanks to Xbox and Black Forest Games for their support 

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First Impressions Video: Giana Sisters Dream Runners

Black Forest Games’ upcoming multiplayer focused Giana Sisters: Dream Runners get the First Impressions treatment. As such, expect a mixture of funny and informative narration as our Video Editor, Greg Giddens, plays the Beta for the first time. Also expect some pretty strong language from the inevitable fails.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners preview

Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams offered a superbly designed, and strikingly detailed platformer with thrilling acuity. The unique environment switching abilities of Giana produced visually stunning and fascinating vistas, and offered an immersive and challenging platforming adventure. Giana Sisters: Dream Runners means to take the series on a tangent, a four player foot racing competition across multiple maps inspired by Twisted Dreams. We were lucky enough to play the Beta for Dream Runner and see how things are shaping up.

Fortunately things are indeed looking good for this multiplayer project. It’s a little rough around the edges still, with the odd glitch and oddity, but it’s an otherwise stable and enjoyable platforming racer.

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It’s of the same ilk as Xbox 360 indie game – and currently early access PC game – SpeedRunners, where up to four players take to a level and race around it over multiple laps, with racers who fall off the edge of the screen being eliminated. Power-ups are strewn across the levels, offering temporary boosts to your character or a weapon to launch against your opponents, meanwhile, a refillable sprint can be charged by passing through certain sections.

It’s multiplayer focused and inherits a lot of fun simply because of it. Playing with others and competing for that precious first place and avoid elimination is intense and exciting, and Dream Runners captures that thrill brilliantly.

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The strategy comes in the form of choosing when to use collected power-ups and your sprint, and choosing which path to take as you’re dashing through the level. Weighing up the risk/reward factors of longer routes for potential power-ups and staying out-of-the-way of your opponents who may launch weapons at you requires quick thinking, making a run through a level a desperate and mistake heavy affair that helps intensify the competition even more so. Dream Runners adds its own additional unique challenge in the form of shifting environments.

Much like in Twisted Dreams, the environments can be altered dramatically, but instead of being able to change your surroundings at will, you need to run through specific switches scattered amongst the levels to change it. Doing so not only makes for a visually different aesthetic to the location, but also adds new hazards and obstacles. It’s terrific, and essentially turns the 9 maps into 18.

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Currently, however, on respawning after a character wins first place, the characters are pointed the wrong way, you’re also frequently respawned elsewhere to where the last point was won, adding to the confusion over direction. Helpful arrows are littered around each level to help you stay on course, but it’s so visually busy and fast paced it’s easy to miss them. These are almost certainly things that will be ironed out before release, however, so no need to fret just yet.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is looking like it’s going to be a terrific multiplayer title when it releases later this year. The level design for the 12 maps is superb, offering a challenging and diverse set of locations and obstacles that are enhanced even further by the environment switching mechanic. Meanwhile, playing with others is a blast. Solo play can get repetitive, the bane of all titles of this ilk, but an aggressively competitive AI makes for a more than worthy challenge to hone your skill for the next human opponent.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is due for release on Xbox One this Summer.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners Gameplay Video

See the latest Giana Sisters title, Giana Sisters: Dream Runners, in action.

This 8 minute gameplay footage shows four colour coordinated characters from the Giana Sisters universe competing over multiple stages trying to beat each other in a platforming foot race. Using collectable abilities the foursome via for first place, once all opponents fall off screen the leader earns a point. Three points grants them the win.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is due for release later this year (2015) on Xbox One.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners Multiplayer Dev diary

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It’s a little over a month until Black Forest Games releases the follow up to Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams. The game itself, Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is a mix of platformer and multiplayer racer and Black Forest have had an inter-development team tournament to test the multiplayer element.

Here’s how the competition panned out.

Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is coming to Xbox One in June.

New Giana Sisters title announced for Xbox One

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Black Forest Games, this time teaming up with EuroVideo Games, are extending their foray into the world of the Giana Sisters.

Having released Twisted Dreams on the Xbox 360 and with a Twisted Dreams Director’s Cut slated for the Xbox One too, they have now announced a multiplayer racer set in the Twisted Dreams world. Called Giana Sisters: Dream Runner, this will feature the ability for up to 4 players to race each other across nine maps covering the dreamscape.

The game pays tribute to titles such as Micro Machines or Speed Runners in it’s style, but will feature all the moves from the original Giana Sisters game. Twirl, dash, crouch and gem boost your way around the map, avoiding the slowing obstacles in your path, in an effort to beat your opponents.

You’ll start off with 4 incarnations of Giana herself, but the more you progress, the more characters you can unlock, such as the Owl, Ninja, Knight and Robot, all with the same set of skills that Giana has, just to make it fair.

Here’s the announcement trailer then, it should be coming early summer 2015.

Ride to Hell: Retribution

Revenge is a dish best served smoking hot! Deep Silver have provided us a new trailer for Ride to Hell: Retribution. In this upcoming action game, Jake Conway takes no prisoners in his search for justice. Ride to Hell: Retribution takes players on a trip into a world set in the 1960’s, dominated by motorcycle gangs and violence, where a man’s mettle is proven through the roar of his engines and the weight of his fist.

If you are a fan of the hit US Series Sons of Anarchy, then this is probably a game for you!

The game will be available from June 2013 here in the UK.