Tag Archives: Ripstone Publishing

Pure Chess: Grandmaster Edition review

Chess isn’t the first thing that springs to mind when thinking about console gaming. Chess games were often given away on the front of PC magazines amongst the latest demos and never really amounted to anything special. However, Pure Chess has arrived for Xbox One and I had the pleasure of reviewing this bad boy and the result may just surprise you. Developers, VooFoo Studios have taken chess and polished it up nicely for next gen and added some nice little features.

It’s really hard to sit here and make Pure Chess sound like one of the most amazing games to ever be created, but sometimes less is more and that certainly is the case for this one. To get into the mood I donned my turtle neck, beige chinos and dark rimmed glasses. I sat down in my recliner chair, poured myself a glass of port and entered the 5×5 code into my Xbox. The download size is probably one of the smallest I’ve seen in a long while and took next to no time to install.

pure chess

On the title screen you’re greeted to a basic yet stunning 3D flyover of a chess board, all the pieces are stood at attention ready for the next battle to commence. The main menu is just as basic with only 6 options to choose from, Local play, play online, store, challenges, learn and profile. Nothing in there has a hidden menu and there are no complicated menu structures to confuse you, what you see is what you get. There is an options section where you can change the screen size and stuff but the thing that stood out for me was the ability to change the music to your preference. There are 4 genres of music, chill, classical, jazz and nature. Whilst I’m not a fan of any of them I have to say the music offers a nice gentle relaxing atmosphere to what can be a tense battle of skill and risk (too far?). The selection of music is amazing and includes bangers such as the 2nd Movement by Mozart and Aquarium by dance floor filler Camille Saint-Saen.

pure chess

The single player difficulty levels cater for everyone and range from Monkey to Expert, if like me the last time you played chess was in a rainy caravan on the east coast in 1986 then monkey difficulty is just fine. After you have selected your game  Pure Chess shows you exactly was it’s made of, the piece selection. The basic version of the game comes with the standard Staunton, Checker and Williams pieces but if you go all out for the Grandmaster Edition then this includes themed pieces such as Halloween, Easter Island and Isle of Lewis (I have no idea what that is but the pieces look nice). For the basic pieces you can then choose what they’re made of for example, if you choose them to be made from crystal then they’re transparent but look stunning.

pure chess

On the next screen you’re given what can only be described as the maps selection. You can choose where to play your game in some exciting locations such as the Museum and the Library, or if you’re a bit wild go for the random option to really spice things up. You can have up to 6 games running at the same time, this will give you plenty of scope to practice you’re tactics and different approaches depending on your play style.

pure chess

But what if I don’t know how to play? I hear you ask, well Pure Chess has you covered on all angles. There is a learn to play section but there’s no fun in that is there. When you fire up a game and click on one of your pieces the squares on the board are highlighted with the moves your player can perform, for example the Rook can only go in straight lines so the board highlights this for a bit of assistance to new players. I have to say after my first game I had not played for years but still managed to check mate the CPU opponent netting myself 50 gamerscore. However that being said on my second game the CPU pulled out some moves that Garry Kasparov would be proud of. Garry Kasparov is like a famous chess player who beat a computer once, well mate I beat mine twice!

pure chess

On a serious note Pure Chess looks stunning, the pieces are ultra realistic and the surroundings fit in nicely with the mood of the game. The music isn’t tedious and creates a mood fitting for such a relaxed atmosphere. For amateurs and pro’s alike Pure Chess offers something for everyone. I have to be honest and say it was a nice change to play something that lets you play at your pace and the only goal is to out smart your opponent whether it’s the CPU or another player using the online mode. If it hadn’t been for the chinos cutting off the circulation to my nether regions I could have sat for hours. If one day you’re at home, it’s raining and no other game is floating your boat, add me on XBL and I’ll gladly play a match with you, but don’t expect good sportmanship. Chess is a cut throat business.


  • Stunning photo-realistic visuals.
  • Features a range of beautifully ornate chess pieces and locations.
  • Step-by-step tutorials that teach you basic, intermediate, and advanced chess techniques.
  • Play against your friends or anyone in the leaderboards worldwide.
  • 3 Tournaments to test your tactics.
  • 100 Bonus chess puzzles to ponder over.
  • Track your ELO and Tournament ratings in the ranking boards.

Thanks to VooFoo Studios, Ripstone and Xbox for Supporting TiX

Dreadbit reveal an Ironcast release date


Set in an alternate steampunk Victorian universe, Indie developer; Dreadbit’s Ironcast is garnering some interest at TiX Towers. Together with Ripstone Publishing, Dreadbit are now ready to announce when the title will finally be hitting the Xbox One marketplace.

As a refined lady or gentleman of the period, you will take command of your gigantic mechanised war machine, prepared to lay waste to the enemies of the British Empire. You are Commanders of the Consortium of Merit and with such an honour comes the responsibility of taking control of your very own seven-metre tall walking Ironcast. A metallic, death-spitting banshee of destruction.

Enemy Ironcast are approaching however, and it is tasked to you to defend the realm from this insidious force and to protect the virtues of Queen and Country.

Generate resource nodes during battle to drive your machine’s weapons and defence systems, but use them wisely or the dastardly enemy will be victorious. If that happens, we will not be amused.

Ironcast will be digitally available from the 4th of March.

Here’s a taster of the action.

Snooker DLC for Pure Pool out now


Voofoo Studios have teased us mere mortals with a Snooker DLC for their excellent Pure Pool game for a little while now. Well the time has finally come for the balls to be framed and the cues to be chalked.

That’s right, Pure Pool’s Snooker DLC is out today and while it might not promise the fast-paced action of other sports, the dulcet tones of white on red will bring the occasional cough and some whispering old men to a lounge near you.

This DLC will feature a full career mode for all difficulty levels, two new snooker challenge modes and some specific trophies, achievements and accolades just for this pack.

Not sure what you might be missing out on? Have a look at the launch trailer below.

Pure Pool, Snooker DLC is out now.

Extreme Exorcism is getting ready to be cast out


Do you fancy yourself as a bit of a Lankester Merrin? Are you troubled by strange noises in the middle of the night? Do you experience feelings of dread in your basement or attic? Have you or any of your family seen a spook, spectre or ghost?

Well fear not, Golden Ruby Games are finally ready to cast their paranormal platformer, Extreme Exorcism out into the cold, dark night. Mae Barrons, Extreme Exorcist is the person you call upon to take care of the haunted houses that every one else has failed to clear. This isn’t quite as straightforward as it seems though.

Each time a spirit is eliminated, another will mimic Mae’s prior movements, weapon fires and dodges. You really will become your own worst enemy. To make it a little more interesting, Mae is armed with more than 20 bustin’ weapons, including swords, guns, grenades, mines, rocket launchers, razor sharp boomerangs, lightning spells and Kung-Fu moves. Whatever happened to the simple Holy Water and Bible?

Extreme Exorcism will be coming to Xbox One via the ID@Xbox program on the 23rd of September.

Pure Hold ‘Em shows its hand with a release date


Launching August 21st, VooFoo Studios will be releasing the first Texas Hold’em Poker game to make it to Xbox One. Split across six different tables each differing in skill, with full online multiplayer support, you can jump in to matches with a space to play a few hands or create a fully customizable tournament for up to eight players to prove you’re the best and take the winnings. Packing a lot of options to customize the colors of your cards and the chips you use all the way down to the felt of the table you play on.

Tune in tomorrow Friday 14th August for an exclusive Pure Hold ‘Em stream

Pure Pool DLC price announced

Ripstone_PurePool_Snooker_(4)VooFoo Studios and Ripstone publishing have confirmed pricing information and revealed the latest screenshots today for their upcoming snooker DLC release. Pure Pool’s snooker DLC will be priced at £2.99 / €3.99 / $4.49 and is due to launch soon, with more details to follow. VooFoo’s latest DLC is set to be the ultimate snooker experience available on Xbox One, PlayStation ®4 and PC via Steam.

VooFoo Studios’ Pure Pool Snooker DLC pack features a full career mode for all difficulty levels; Amateur, Pro and Master, two new snooker challenge modes and DLC specific trophies, achievements and snooker accolades.

Watch the Pure Pool Snooker DLC trailer here:


Pure Hold’em announces a King’s Ransom


It’s not even out yet, and Voofoo Studios are announcing DLC for Pure Hold’em. This DLC will feature a new chip set and was named via a community-driven competition.

This eventual winner, Ben King, beat over 1,000 other entries and came up with the apt moniker, King’s Ransom. Lucky old Ben won a console and his name in the game credits.

This DLC should be available when Pure Hold’em is released, although at the moment, there is no date set for that to happen.

Pure Hold’em will offer players the chance to step inside the Pure Casino, start at the Joker table and work their way up to the Aces and Masters tables in the exclusive VIP penthouse. It will feature full online multiplayer support with the option to create your own tournament or to simply join an open poker table for that quick online poker fix.

Ripstone Publishing and Voofoo are promising an update on the release date, soon.

Are you all in?


Pure Pool to get new DLC


Back in November, our very own Dave reviewed Pure Pool from VooFoo Studios and found that he rather liked it. In that very review was at least one reference to snooker and it would appear that the clamour of fans wanting the perceived gentlemantly iteration of table games has reached the developers too. Indeed, this appears to have been to such a degree that they have today announced a new DLC pack for Pure Pool will be incoming soon.

This pack will bring snooker to Pure Pool and will feature a full career mode for all difficulty levels, two new snooker challenge modes and DLC specific trophies, achievements and snooker accolades.

Technical Director at VooFoo Studios, Mark Williams is thrilled and had this to say;

We’re thrilled to be able to reveal our brand new snooker DLC pack to Pure Pool fans today, in the wake of the Snooker World Championships. It’s something that ourselves and Ripstone have been dying to announce for a while, but we wanted to be able to show fans the DLC in action. We can’t wait for players to get their hands on this latest addition to the game and hope they’re as excited as we are for its release.

As soon as we know a date for this pack’s release, we’ll bring it to you. In the meantime, enjoy what the pack is looking like so far in the new announcement trailer below.

Ironcast announced for Xbox One


Fads are funny aren’t they? The current “in-thing” is for stuff to be Steampunk. That curious melding of Victorian brass and levers and modern day technology. Steamworld Dig, Unmechanical Extended, Clockwork, it’s a great time to be a gaming fan of the Steampunk genre.

Guildford based indie developer Dreadbit Games, one-man kick-start-up Daniel Leaver, has announced that the Steam release Ironcast will be coming to Xbox One. Daniel was part of the team behind the immensely popular LittleBIGPlanet series and decided in 2014 to bring his considerable experience to bear on his own development.

Ironcast, set in an alternative Steampunk Britain, is that development.

The game sees you pit your customisable mech against the enemies of the country in pitched battle on the streets of Victorian London. Power up, repair, defend and attack with your mech by powering up the central nodes with a jem-matching style board in the centre of the gameplay arena.

Each mech is upgradeable, either by salvaging what you can from your defeated opponents or by purchasing new parts from the hangar bay.

Ironcast is currently looking to release this year sometime, as ever, keep your eyes peeled here for more.

Pure Hold’em comes to Xbox One


Indie developers VooFoo Studios, the team behind Pure Pool have announced that Pure Hold’em is coming to the Xbox One. Based on Texas Hold’em the game brings the excitement of the Casino to your living room and players will have a choice of 4 different skill tables from the novice Jokers table to the pro Aces and Masters.

Pure Hold’em will support full online multilayer of up to 8 players and will allow the player to fully customise the tables, cards and chips they use.

VooFoo Studios in collaboration with Ripstone publishing have delivered some strong titles in the past and we have high hopes for this game. I just hope it lasts longer than the many attempts we have seen in the past on the 360.

Pure Hold’em is scheduled for release later this year but in the meantime check out the teaser trailer.