Tag Archives: Versus Evil

Let Them Come review

There’s a scene in Aliens where the marines setup automatic turrets to shoot the approaching horde of aliens. In Let Them Come you essentially recreate that scene but as a gunner controlling a turret. It’s intense, a little scare despite the pixel art aesthetic, fun and challenging. It’s so very similar to that scene from Aliens, yet to my knowledge, this is the first time it’s been translated to a tower defence game, and it works marvellously.

It’s so very simple. A text introduction paints the picture of a lone soldier needing to setup his turret at different locations to figure out the story behind this alien infestation. It’s then a matter of you earning credits by shooting the aliens, buying upgrades for your character and the turret, then conquering multiple waves of aliens, defeating a boss, and moving on to the next location.

Pixel art conveys the action and gore. The narrow corridors with subtle animations in the background, foreground and the sides bringing each scene to life. Silky smooth animations for your character’s movement as well as that of the many different alien species. It looks fantastic. In fact this art style is miraculous, and not just here but practically everywhere I see it. How these pixel artists capture a person, an alien, a location so beautifully and in such detail while shaping it in pixels is miraculous. Here it also works to add a level of nostalgia to the title, to manage your expectations for a simple game of tower defence. Indeed, it wouldn’t have been out of place as an official Aliens game from 1986, if it wasn’t for the exceptionally smooth frame rate, crisp well-defined pixels and copious amounts of alien hostiles and bullets filling the corridor that only modern system can truly handle at this level of quality.

There’s more to it than simply letting loose with your turret against the waves of aliens, though, and soon you’re contemplating precisely what you need to purchase between waves to best fight the horde; what the best tools are for this violent but necessary job of survival. You can only hold limited ammo types and equipment, and choosing the right combination becomes more and more critical as the waves progress.

Four slots can be filled with passive upgrades, these being buffs to health, or armour against projectiles, cooling vents for the turret, and several more which affect your character’s ability to fight off the waves. Meanwhile, two slots are available for personal equipment, these consisting of melee weapons, grenades and other useful offensive of defensive items. Moreover, there’s a wide selection of different types of grenades that perform better against different species or quantities of aliens. Finally, there’s the two slots for ammo type for the turret, these being the standard ammo, of which you have an infinite amount, and the special ammo types, that run the gamut much like the grenades do. Bullets for the special ammo types need to be bought and used wisely to deal with waves. Indeed, there are many factors to consider when it comes to purchasing these weapons and equipment that will affect your survival rate.

As you defeat waves and progress, more is revealed. Boss creatures test your ability to adapt at the end of each location, providing a stiff challenge that requires you to equip yourself smartly. Meanwhile, power-ups are earned that can provide some much needed boosts to ammo, health, score, or even enhances you and your firepower temporarily. Fortunately, defeat isn’t the end, you are free to restart the wave having kept any credits earned so to spend them more wisely and maybe prevail next time. Additionally, much of the purchasable equipment can be upgraded once you’ve moved to a new location, always giving you something to spend your hard earned credits on, and soon proving crucial to keeping you alive as larger waves attack and new alien species throw something unexpected at you. Let Them Comes certainly keeps you on your toes.

Despite the challenge, however, it doesn’t take long to reach the end, and for some the frustration of overcoming the challenge is going to be too much. Afterwards you can play through again at different difficulty levels, as well as compete for high scores, but your mileage will vary depending on your patients and love of the genre and art style. Although, the time you do spend with this exhilarating and delightful tower defence title is certainly well wasted.

Thanks to Xbox and Versus Evil for supporting TiX

Viking epic The Banner Saga marauding on Xbox soon

the_banner_saga

It’s been a little while coming, but finally developer Stoic ably assisted by publisher Versus Evil, have revealed a release date for their Viking epic, The Banner Saga.

Already sporting a nifty PC release that’s earned the game some critical acclaim, Stoic will be releasing The Banner Saga via the ID@Xbox program on the 12th of January 2016.

Stoic’s founder and Technical Director, John Watson;

We have been working on porting The Banner Saga to consoles for some time. Porting the game certainly presented technical challenges that we needed to overcome, and gave us an opportunity to redesign the user experience for console controllers. We have managed to merge the story and gameplay from The Banner Saga with a refined controller interface to make it a very enjoyable console gaming experience.

For those of you who haven’t seen the game, you’re looking at a single player Viking saga, where your choice of travel, combat and conversation determines the outcome of your own personal story as well as the survival of an entire civilisation.

Have a look at the announcement trailer below and let us know if The Banner Saga will be on your New Year playlist when it hits consoles on the 12th of January.

Afro Samurai 2 is coming for revenge

afro_samurai2

Ooh, we love a good sequel, here at TiX. The first iteration of Afro Samurai was a fun hack n slasher, when it came out back in 2009. Yes, it really was six years ago.

Redacted Studios have decided that it’s time to roll out a sequel for the character, first seen in Manga comics and Anime cartoons.

Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma will pit Afro against his nemesis, you got it, Kuma. The game will be released initially on that other console, on the 22nd of this month, with an Xbox One release to be confirmed at a later date.

The developers have taken the unusual step of releasing a music video to announce the game. This one is featured in the title’s soundtrack and is by Indie hip-hop artist, Visual Eyez and filmed and directed by Fouche (I’m sure these names must mean something to someone younger and more hip).

Expect an announcement from Redacted and Versus Evil on the Xbox One release of Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma, soon.

You want the official reveal trailer? OK, I found it for you. I really do spoil you.

The Banner Saga 2 coming to Xbox One

TBS2_Logo_(Flat)

Independent game developers Stoic and indie publisher Versus Evil yesterday officially confirmed that The Banner Saga 2, the sequel to The Banner Saga, is coming to Xbox One via the ID@Xbox self-publishing program in 2015.

The announcement comes after the official first reveal of The Banner Saga 2 at last Friday’s Game Awards held in Las Vegas. Trailer below:

There’s a seismic shift in the video game industry as consumers embrace the contributions and creations of independent game-makers such as Stoic, the incredibly passionate creators of The Banner Saga and The Banner Saga 2. We are very proud to be leading the way with The Banner Saga 2 announcement at what is traditionally a AAA game’s event. It’s a great time to be an ‘indie’ and we couldn’t be more proud to continue working with the Stoic team and our partners at Fearless Media who helped make this happen.

said Steve Escalante, general manager at Versus Evil.

For The Banner Saga 2, Stoic will continue the legacy and story of The Banner Saga. Featuring 2D animation and art, a tactical combat system and a cast of unforgettable characters, the original game earned several awards and nominations, including winner of the 2014 Geekie Awards for “Best Video Game”, finalist for “Excellence in Visual Arts” and two honourable mentions for “Excellence in Design” and “Excellence in Audio” at the 2014 Independent Game Festival.

The critical reception and widespread fan appreciation for The Banner Saga is overwhelming and humbling, and has the team at Stoic dedicated to delivering a fantastic sequel with The Banner Saga 2. Here we are announcing our next game, our way, on a world-wide stage. We have surrounded our development efforts with quality people like Austin Wintory, Malukah, Taylor Davis and the Versus Evil team. We couldn’t be more excited.

said Arnie Jorgensen, co-owner and art director, Stoic.

Additional details and information for The Banner Saga 2 are expected to be available in early 2015. We’ll keep you updated as we learn more.