An Unreal opportunity
As Epic positions Fortnite as the next big gaming platform, three studios outline the pros and cons of developing on UEFN
The creator of Alto’s Adventure brings his flock into 3D with Summerhill
The other day I was tooling about on a vanilla World Of Warcraft server, and as I explored Stormwind with my boring human warrior, I was struck by something that in more recent games (and some older) is rather more advanced. I’m used to, or perhaps spoiled by, proper aids to navigation within videogames nowadays. I recently replayed the original Mafia; in that game, the map is basic, has no rotation, and there is no GPS to plot a route to your destination.
For anyone who spends too much time online, it’s a common refrain: Twitter is not the world. But what, Dustborn asks, if it was? In the game’s dystopian America, the Internet’s been shut off by an authoritarian government, but that hasn’t stopped ideas from our online world bleeding into their reality. This is a place where ‘block’, ‘gaslight’ and ‘trigger’ take on different meanings – where they are, in fact, superpowers. Though perhaps not ones you’d especially want.
A team of RTS veterans makes its next move
Heading down under for a philosophical post-apocalypse
LAST TRAIN HOME
Ashborne Games’ trip through a pivotal point in history
Insect, decide: how to make the most of a short life
2D or not 2D: that is the question, in Nintendo-inspired storybook adventure The Plucky Squire
THE CALL OF THE WEIRD
The videogame influence of HP Lovecraft and the Cthulhu mythos is only growing. What does it mean to call on the ultra-traditionalist master of cosmic horror?
COLLECTED WORKS AARYN FLYNN
How working on tools for Neverwinter Nights led the former BioWare GM to interfacing with the EA machine and grappling with the challenges of Anthem
A SPACE FOR THE UNBOUND
How a small Indonesian studio created an intricate tale of loneliness and understanding
How setbacks and reinvention turned the True Colors creator into a studio with stories to tell
Baldur’s Gate 3
Not so much a revelation as it is a long-overdue reunion, Baldur’s Gate 3 is a glittering gala that brings together almost 40 years of RPG innovation. Mingle with the crowd and you’ll find virtually everyone in attendance. The dark choices and lingering consequences of CD Projekt brood in one corner, while the emergent play of Ultima and its Underworld cousins set fire to the tablecloth in another. The dice rolls and branching dialogue of early BioWare chat amiably with the cinematic drama of the studio’s later years. Even Planescape: Torment is here, and it’s every bit as weird and amusing as you’d expect.
Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
And to think, it all starts so innocently. Mario receives a letter from Princess Peach inviting him to the town of Rogueport for a treasure hunt. The name of this destination is a mild red flag, perhaps, but there’s little else to suggest you’re not in for another family-friendly adventure. Then you arrive in Rogueport and one of the first NPCs reminds you that death comes for us all. If you prefer a more visual reminder, might we point you towards the gallows in the main square?
Rogueport is a seedy backwater, home to Bob-omb thugs and Goombas on the lam. Even the Piantas, who seemed so innocent in Super Mario Sunshine, are running an organised crime outfit, their Goodfellasparodying dialogue managing to make Mario look like a sensitive…