April 18, 2016

This Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time’s Gerudo Valley UE4 Recreation Is A Thing of Beauty

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Rae Michelle Richards

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is one of my favorite games of all time – I have many fond memories playing the game as a child. To see those childhood memories transformed into a series of absolutely breathtaking HD demos constructed in Unreal Engine 4 is an absolute treat for any Zelda fan and thanks to one creator, they are real!

Creator CryZENx used the maps from the 3DS enhanced port of Ocarina of Time as a reference and re-made the map from scratch in UE4. Looking at the lighting effects and texture work done in this recreation shows the potential for the Zelda franchise on next-generation hardware – and all of this was one by just one person! Best of all CryZENx even has some of the game’s core functions – namely Z Targeting already working with appropriate camera, animations and sound effects.

This stunning gerudo valley isn’t CryZENx‘s only work on an OOT HD recreation. They’ve also made impression versions of the Temple of Time and a Work In Progress version of the Shadow Link fight from the Water Temple.

Playable builds of CryZENx‘s work are available on their YouTube channel.
[youtube id=”GgbGgtq-NMc”]


Chompy Chomp Chomp Party comes to Wii U in North America May 19th

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Jason Nason

Utopian World of Sandwiches, which is the coolest name for an indie developer, announced today that their party game Chompy Chomp Chomp Party will be munching its way onto the Nintendo eShop for Wii U in North America on May 19th! The game has already launched in Europe, Australasia and South Africa.

Chompy Chomp Chomp Party is a frantic party game to be played with as many people as can fit in your living room. Up to 9 players can play in each of Chompy Chomp Chomp Party’s 3 game modes. Chase & Chomp sees you chasing one of the other chompies on the screen, while somebody else chases you. Dash Zone has one chompy dashing from one safe zone to the next while all of the other chompies try to stop them. Keep the Thing sees all of the chompies trying to catch and keep… the thing!

The game feagures local multiplayer of up to 9 players and has three game modes, battle mode, dash mode, and Keep the Thing Mode. It also has twenty arenas in which to play.

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ITS: Into The Stars

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Kyle Scarboro


Word around the information super highway is that this little game, aptly named Into the Stars, is a hybrid of Star Trek Commander and FTL: Faster Than Light, but is it really? The people have spoken and the people are generally right. Into the Stars is filling the void of the lack of spaceship commander based games that are out there. With inspiration gathered from these games and mixing it with a collection of modern ideas and stunning graphics, Into the Stars is paving the way and breaking ground on a genre that has not been explored to its full potential yet.

Into the Stars is the first title to come out of the California based studio Fugitive Games and published by Iceberg Interactive based out of The Netherlands. With just a team of four at Fugitive Games, they managed to squeeze out some of the finest graphics in a space based game that I’ve seen from the Unreal Engine 4. Though, the level of artistry and talent comes at no surprise when mentioning the team behind this game. Being former EA DICE and Spark Unlimited developers means that this game should be held at a higher pillar than most. Some of their past titles they’ve worked on are Lost Planet, Battlefield, and Medal of Honor. If working on AAA titles wasn’t enough, they managed to get Jack Wall to work on their soundtrack. For those who do not know Jack Wall’s works, he is the man behind Myst IV, Jade Empire, Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow, Lost Planet 3, but most notably from the Mass Effect series.

Like most small developing teams these days, Into the Stars was conceived by crowd funding through Kickstarter and surpassed their goal on January 16th, 2015 and by their last day on February 4th, they managed to raise over $110,000. By early July, they were Greenlit through Steam and up for Early Access. Now into 2016, their game is finally released, but does it hold up to the ideals they instilled in their 4,000+ backers and many others who helped through early access?


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Ark Survival Evolved lawsuit settles for 40 million USD

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Fionna Schweit

Trendy Entertainment is probably not a studio you have heard of, Studio Wildcard probably is, or at least you have heard of their big game: Ark: Survival Evolved. The Dino taming, survival game that was last years smash hit on steam, that sold over 2 million copies. We even recently had the opportunity to interview Jessie Rapczak at GDC. Ark is quite popular even spawing a spin off king of the hill type of game they are giving away for free, in addition to the 2 million in sales on Steam alone! Some simple back of envelope math puts the worth of Wildcard with those sales at over 60 million USD in sales as of October of last year. So its no surprise that when you make a lot of money someone is going to want a piece of that money. In this case it was Trendy Entertainment former home of Jeremy Stieglitz, and developer of Dungeon Defenders.  Jeremy is listed as one of the founders of Wildcard, and was recently sued with his former company alleging that he had tried to recruit other developers at the studio to the Ark project, clearly violating the contract he signed when he left Trendy which had a clause forbidding him from poaching any of Trendy’s developers. Poaching for those not in the industry refers to the practice of recruiting an employee from a direct competitor. This week Trendy and Wildcard have settled out of court documents filed with Alachua County Clerk(requires log in and capta to view) show. This filing form April the 6th shows that the claimant (Trendy) believes that Trendy owes them over 20 million dollars in damages.

The writ says in part: “This amount does not include the substantial damages that Insight incurred as a result of Stieglitz’s failure to honor the right of first refusal, nor does it take into account the tens of millions of dollars by which Wildcard was unjustly enriched by using Trendy’s intellectual property”

To summarize Trendy isint ready to stop at 26 million. Trendy’a filing also levels some other interesting points: “Plaintiff believes that the Stieglitzes will continue to remove their assets from Florida until they are effective judgment proof”. Indicating that that the plaintiff believes that Stieglitze is holding money in off shore accounts. It goes out to level the very serious accuasation of perjury and even name a specific country (Singapore) as the place the money would be stored.

Now Kotaku is reporting and filings seem to indicate that before this could ever see the light of a courtroom its been settled out of court for a massive sum of 40 million dollars. Kotaku has links to a text message which purports to show Mrs. Stieglitze’s phone with the number 40 million as the settlement. So if we belive the filing (which we can) then the case is settled and if you belive a screen shot that appeared on reddit the settlement was 40 million dollars. Considering we know that Ark sold at least 60 million in direct sales, this doesnt seem reasonable unless there was much more money involved than just my back of envelope math showed.

Either way, this just goes to show how ugly intellectual property and small video game developing can be. This is not the first, nor will it be the last case of a someone moving on from a mediocre company, having great sucess with similar (or the same) people and tools, elsewhere, and thus drawing the ire of the old company.



Overwatch Abominations – A New Glitch has Disturbing Results

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Renee Gittins

One of the joys of playing games still in development is the discovery of bugs and other glitches that have amusing results. Sometimes these even make it out of the betas and into the released games themselves, like the flying horse of Skyrim. This latest glitch is one that I hope to see continue to live on.

During the Overwatch stress test this last weekend, one of the members of my guild discovered a glitch in Overwatch that allowed you to force a texture on another character’s model. Some of the results are quite humorous while others border terrifying.

My personal favorite is Soldier 76 gracefully poised in Tracer’s new “Over the Shoulder” pose.


Isn’t he so spunky?

Of course, it’s the horrifying Mei-Winston combination that has won over hearts. Just check out that tongue!


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Doom open beta extended

Posted on April 18, 2016 by Fionna Schweit

If you aren’t our own Rae Michelle, you are probably enjoying the DOOM beta this weekend. Its blend of rockets, fast movement, cosmetics and unlocks seems to have made someone happy as its overlords, Bethesda softworks (yes the skyrim people) have decided to extend it to 11:59pm ET. on April 18. Personally I havent been able to get in to it at all, as this weekend saw the Overwatch beta as well as a bunch of other gaming related stuff, but I did watch some streams of it, and they seemed pretty good.

Plenty of peole had the same set of complaints as Rae all of which you can read here  but ill summarize: “It seems that DOOM is a game at odds with itself based upon what I played in the closed beta– while the gameplay mechanics are fun and the shooting solid, the rest of the package feels generic and severely lacking in-depth” Rae was right. Nothing that I saw made Doom seem like Doom. Which is really too bad because in this era of white washed shooters it would be very nice to have one that wasnt just space marines shooting each other.


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