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» Undertale - Review @ Screen Critics - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm
» Warren Spector - Devs must define Success for themselves - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm
» Beyond Good & Evil 2 - 7 Quick Facts - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm
» THQ Nordic - Announce Black Mirror - Aug 16, 2017, 02:02 pm
» Vaporum - Development has Finished - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am
» ICY - Released - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am
» Larian Studios - RPG Player Survey Results - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am
» Pillars of Eternity II - Update 39 - Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am
» West of Loathing - Review @ Bleeding Cool - Aug 15, 2017, 07:52 pm
» Undertale - Review @ IGN - Aug 15, 2017, 07:52 pm
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Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates - Release Date Announced
Posted: Aug 17, 2017, 02:12 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates will be released onto Steam October 4th.


Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates to Rise onto Steam on October 4

Neo-Victorian RPG from Coin Operated Games Reveals Author/Cartoonist Paul Noth as Story Writer

Auburn, New Hampshire - August 16, 2017 - Coin Operated Games announces today that its upcoming Neo-Victorian RPG Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates, will be coming to PC via Steam starting on October 4, 2017. Developed by a team of industry veterans from such influential companies as Crytek, Creative Assembly, Codemasters and Digital Reality, Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates is a top-down isometric RPG that takes place in an alternate industrial New York circa 1911.

... water is everywhere but none of it to drink...

Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates depicts a troubled New York in which the entire city is flooded by rising oceans and the citizens now face a new threat: the fresh water pipes have stopped and there is no water to drink!

Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates features an original story penned by renowned writer/comic artist Paul Noth, a staff cartoonist for The New Yorker magazine, where his work has appeared regularly since 2004. He created the Emmy-nominated animated series "Pale Force" for Late Night with Conan O'Brien and was animation consultant for Saturday Night Live. He's also developed shows for Cartoon Network, Adult Swim and Nickelodeon, and his trilogy of middle-grade novels will be published by Bloomsbury, starting in April of 2018 with "How to Sell Your Family to the Aliens."

"After writing for different media throughout my career, I'm very excited to be working with Coin Operated Games to write their video game script," said Paul Noth. "The world that has been created in Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates is amazing and truly unique, so I'm thrilled to be able to develop a story set in this new world."

Although set in a fictional, alternate history, the game pays homage to historic accounts by adding authentic items such as patent medicines including poisons or tonics made from dangerous ingredients. Many of the games' objectives and side quests will tie directly into the experiences that someone in the 19th century would have. The game's authenticity reflects scenes from New York circa 1900, while tying the storyline to current day themes such as global warming and the rising of the oceans.

"We are very honored that Paul is working with us on the storyline for Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates," said John Randall, Creative Director of Empyre. "He is a world class writer, and has been invaluable to us with helping to shape the direction of our games' signature Neo Victorian story and experience."

Currently in development by Coin Operated Games, Empyre: Lords of the Sea Gates will be available via Steam on October 4, 2017. More information will be shared in the coming weeks once the waters die down...

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Hero-U - Alpha Testing
Posted: Aug 17, 2017, 02:12 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Hero-U has a new Kickstarter update which announces Alpha Testing.

Mysterious Events in Hero-U
There are mysterious forces behind Hero-U. It is not obvious who is actually financing the school, or why. As for the greater society of Sardonia, we don't spell it out in the game, but obviously Thief and Rogue are not the only professions. However...

Even though Shawn is a poor young man with an overworked single mother and apparently no connections, someone is looking out for him. Maybe more than one "someone". That results in an invitation to audition for the Thieves' Guild, and then a mandatory "invitation" to Hero-U.

Nothing happens by coincidence. The existence of the school, and the fact that it's built on a "haunted" old castle, is also not a coincidence.

Players will learn something about these mysteries in Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption. Other stories will be developed in future games of the series, and some of it will stay locked in our "Game Bible" as background for all of the games and game events.

Equally Mysterious Hero-U Game Development
It would be wonderful if making a game was like turning on a light switch, or even like taking a collection of Legos and turning them into a stunning model.

Actually, it *is* a lot like that, only there are about 600 models to put together... or maybe 6000. The mystery is that we can even put so many distinct pieces together to create one coherent game.

Every week, Hero-U creeps a little closer to being a complete, fun game. Along the way, JP and Al continue to draw, paint, model, and animate the game. Joshua, Cidney, and our secret programmers move between bringing the game to life and squashing bugs.

For a little more about the importance of each team member to every game we've made, and to Hero-U in particular, I posted an article to the Hero-U blog,

Ryan Grogan has recently returned to the team to help us finish the music and soundscape to make Rogue to Redemption sound as amazing as it looks.

Josh Mandel and Lori alternate between tickling your funny bones and writing moments of suspense, drama, and tenderness. Yes, they're both still writing game content as we get feedback on parts of the game that need more direction or energy.

The story of Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption is a difficult balancing act as we strive to make Shawn O'Conner a hero even though he'll always be a rogue. Developing the game is like juggling hundreds of spinning plates at a time. Only when every one of them is in balance will the game be complete. After almost five years of development, it's all coming together.

Now it's time to begin outside testing and find out how much more still needs to be done.

Alpha Test Time
There are a lot of steps involved in getting a game to outside testers. We've developed our own built-in bug reporter that catches both software errors and player reports. Once they appear in our testing database, we do "triage" on them and assign them to specific team members to fix.

Another step is contacting and working with backers. I'm starting out with a small subset of our Alpha Test level backers to be our first guinea pigs, er, brave testers. Once we have the reporting tool adequately tested, I'll expand that by stages to all 350 Alpha Test backers. We are asking each tester to sign a Beta Test agreement similar to the ones used by Electronic Arts and other major game developers. We don't want anyone revealing the mysteries too soon!

Once our first testers have looked at the game in sections, we'll put everything together for a full Beta test accessible to all 2000 backers who chose a Beta Test level. This will be a full, feature-complete game, but it will probably still have some rough edges. Waves of Beta tests will continue until we are satisfied that Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption is ready for release.

The initial test build includes the first few weeks at Hero-U. We've disabled the second half of the game and all combat areas. Over the next couple of months, we'll gradually open up additional areas of the game for testing. We'll move from Alpha to Beta testing once we've revealed the entire game.

As always, keep your information current at and watch your email for your alpha or beta test invitation.

From Mystery to Discovery
This has been an epic game development process, and even when the game is tested and released, there will be much more to come. We will keep posting updates and stay in touch with the Hero-U community. Then it will be time to begin work on Hero-U: Wizard's Way and the rest of the series.

Like the Starship Enterprise, once we complete our five year mission, there will be new ports, new destinations, and new crew to take us all where no one has gone before.

Speaking of which...

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General News - The Future of Immersive Sims
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]PC Gamer thinks that the immersive sims sub-genre is in danger:

The uncertain future of games like Deus Ex and Dishonored
Immersive sims have been held up as the pinnacle of PC game design, but recent sales may mean the genre is endangered.

Warren Spector is stuck in Prey. The director of Deus Ex, who has worked on many games since labeled "immersive sims"-in fact, he coined the term in a post-mortem of Deus Ex -has been playing the modern games inspired by classics like Thief and System Shock. But he hasn't finished Prey yet. Or, as he puts it: "The crew quarters are kicking my butt."

He's enjoying it though, just as he enjoyed the other recent immersive sim from Arkane Studios, Dishonored 2. "I thought they were both excellent examples of what I think of when I say 'immersive sim,'" Spector says. "They removed barriers to belief that I was in another world and they let me approach problems as problems, rather than as puzzles. I'm really glad Arkane exists and that they're so committed to the genre. Without them I'd have fewer games to play!"

Spector's not the only one who'd mourn their loss. Arkane is still around, but there's this uneasy feeling in the air that there's now some reason to worry. Not about Arkane, necessarily, but the immersive sim in general, this genre held up as the shining example of PC gaming at its most smartest and most complex. None of the last three big-budget immersive sims-Prey, Dishonored 2, and Eidos Montreal's Deus Ex: Mankind Divided-have broken a million sales on Steam.

It's always been a niche genre, defined by player freedom, environmental storytelling, and a lot of reading diary entries. How long can they be propped up by the fact that some designers really like making them?


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Journey's End - Dev News
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Some news about the 3D side scroller RPG Journey's End on ModdDB:

Devlog #2 - Cameras

Welcome back, Journeyers!
Today, we bring you a number of engine improvements. Most of these updates aren't super exciting from a player's perspective, but they're really important to making the game look and feel great!


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Undertale - Review @ Screen Critics
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Contrary to IGN Screen Critics feels that Undertale is overrated:

Why I Feel Undertale is Overrated
Undertale is an adventure RPG styled game for the PC that has been extremely popular and loved for quite some time now. However, I have always questioned what makes this game so great compared to the other RPG titles out there. There are some issues I have personally found with the game that leads me to believe it is overrated for what it is.

My first issue with the game is the fact that it is considered an RPG despite the way the gameplay is. There are two routes a player can take within the Undertale: the Genocide route and the Pacifist route. Genocide is when the player kills every monster they encounter, and Pacifist is when the player spares every monster they come across. However, if the player takes the typical RPG Genocide route, there are consequences. I have a problem with this because a typical RPG would be for a player to defeat every single monster they encounter. However, Undertale punishes you for playing this game as a true RPG. Why consider this a true RPG if the player is punished for playing the game through as a typical RPG would be played?


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Warren Spector - Devs must define Success for themselves
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Warren Spector told Gamesindustry:

Devs must define success for themselves
Ahead of his keynote address at Pax Dev, the Deus Ex and System Shock designer warns that it simply isn't enough to "make a fun little game"

Like many entertainment sectors, the world of video games is a business. But it's a business ultimately driven by passionate and creative individuals. And that matters... a lot.

It's especially important to OtherSide Entertainment's Warren Spector, the industry veteran famous for designing Deus Ex, among other classics. Spector will be giving the keynote address at PAX Dev later this month (a conference that excludes the press), and he spoke with about the message he aims to deliver to his fellow developers.

At the heart of Spector's talk, called "Developer, Know Thyself", is the notion that creators shouldn't let the commercial side define their success. Moreover, developers should be making games that actually mean something to them.

"The big point I'm trying to make is that it isn't enough just to think, 'Oh I'm going to make a fun little game.' For the sake of developer sanity and also for the medium itself we need to be thinking a little bigger than that, and really think [about] what success means.


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Beyond Good & Evil 2 - 7 Quick Facts
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Seven quick facts about Beyond Good & Evil 2 on Cultured Vultures:

Beyond Good and Evil 2: 7 Quick Facts You Should Know
A game of almost startling ambition, Beyond Good and Evil 2 is promising a lot of wild things.
They say good things come to those who wait. If you saw Michel Ancel's reaction to the long-awaited unveiling of his Beyond and Good Evil 2 at E3 2017, you should know that a lot of patience goes a long way. There were many reveals over the three day bonanza of jumbled "exclusive" terminology, awkward YouTuber appearances, and vague promises, but not much else on display caught the attention quite like the almost mythical sequel to a cult classic getting its first exhibition after so many years of waiting.

  1. Beyond Good and Evil 2 will be a prequel
  2. Beyond Good and Evil 2 will feature character customisation
  3. Crew dynamics will be important in Beyond Good and Evil 2
  4. There will be no loading times in Beyond Good and Evil 2
  5. Beyond Good and Evil 2 features procedural generation
  6. Beyond Good and Evil 2 will have online co-op
  7. Beyond Good and Evil 2 will have plenty of RPG elements

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THQ Nordic - Announce Black Mirror
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 02:02 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]@PCGamer THQ Nordic have announced a reboot of the gothic horror adventure Black Mirror.

"Even players unfamiliar with the previous games in the series can also enjoy Black Mirror," so reads a statement from THQ Nordic. "The major difference between the new and old Black Mirror, apart from the modern graphics of course, will be a new gameplay element: interaction with vision-like apparitions."

Speaking to that last part, said vision-like apparitions will help players learn more about the past of the protagonist's family as the game's eerie atmosphere echoes the style of Edgar Allan Poe and HP Lovecraft.

Not much more to go on for now, however Black Mirror is due November 28, 2017. More information can be found via its official site.​

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Vaporum - Development has Finished
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]The devs of Vaporum announced that the game is done. Normally that is accompanied with a release date, but not in this case as they are still working with some PR people on gaining momentum before the game is released, which might be somewhere in September.

We are very sorry for not posting for a while about the project, but the amount of focus we put into the game instead of writing about it was time well spent!

The game is done!

You can expect an announcement about the release date in the coming weeks.

These past two years have been a rollercoaster ride for us. We've fought on many winning fronts and it looks like the fight is nearly over. There are just a few slain foes who are here and there sticking out the fingers from their coffin:
  • Fixing a few remaining bugs.
  • Balancing the game difficulty.
  • General polishing of the game.
These are basically done, but we are still vigilant to possible issues that might come at us from the dark depths of quality assurance.

We are also preparing the PR for the release in cooperation with pros in the field, which is, really, a new experience for us. We want to make sure everyone who might like our game will get to know about it - this is something you can help us with by sharing information about us.

There is a lot of organizational stuff that has still to be taken care of and since there are just 4 of us in the team + some help from external contributors, we ask for your patience. We are aware that we are hugely behind schedule, but we are planning to release the game ASAP, and September looks like a promising estimation.​

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ICY - Released
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]ICY: Frostbite Edition has been released on Steam a few days ago.

ICY: Frostbite Edition is now available! Press on install and download it, we are eager to know what you think about it!

Bugs have been squashed! Mechanics have been improved! The game changed a lot!

You can find a massive changelog clicking here![]​

The game has currently a 25% discount.

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Larian Studios - RPG Player Survey Results
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]The results of the Larian Studios RPG player survey are in. It is a PDF that can be found on Google Docs.

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Pillars of Eternity II - Update 39
Posted: Aug 16, 2017, 08:02 am by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Here is a new update for Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, which contains a summary of things that have already been reported before, via blogs and social media.

We're back with another episode of 'From the Feed of the Director.' This time we have a few surprises for you, as we look into our internal Obsidian blogs and pull out only the juiciest insights. You'll also get some information on some of the things that Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire Game Director, Josh Sawyer, has shared on social media as well, for the gadfly-types among you.
In this video (all footage is work in progress) :
  • "This ship's wheel is too damn big!"
  • Bombs of the Deadfire - to throw or not to throw?
  • Guns Work Best When You Line Up and Everyone Shoots at Once, by Ulysses S. Magran
  • Dancin' and barfin'
  • Yes, Josh's cat is in the game again

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West of Loathing - Review @ Bleeding Cool
Posted: Aug 15, 2017, 07:52 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]Bleeding Cool has reviewed the Western RPG West of Loathing:

This Paper Town Ain't Big Enough: We Review 'West Of Loathing'
I really love playing games that don't take themselves too seriously. Not so much to the point of breaking the fourth wall (with some exceptions who get it right), but at least taking whatever genre they have and making fun of the idea while also making it an interesting game. The Kingdom Of Loathing was one of those games where you got to play an RPG in a stick-figure world where it poked fun at the genre and some of the absurdity of it, but also gave you a great adventure to embark upon. Asymmetric has now created a sequel of sorts called West of Loathing, which I happily got to play for review.


West of Loathing is one of the best indie titles of the year, hands down. It's an awesome experience and made me want to go back and play it again, choosing a different horse and side character. Even with its flaws, this was a fantastic experience with great replay value, as no two adventures can be the same once you make the early choices. I loved playing it so much that I didn't care how many hours I spent glued to the screen. I highly recommend it both for the humor and the gameplay. West of Loathing is a must for RPG fans, and something so simplistic in nature that casual gamers will enjoy it, too.

Score: 10/10

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Undertale - Review @ IGN
Posted: Aug 15, 2017, 07:52 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]IGN reviewed Undertale - and it got a perfect 10:

Undertale Review
Undertale's clever understanding of the RPG mindset and fantastic writing make it an unforgettable experience unique to games.

I finished my first playthrough of Undertale in stunned silence. My journey had begun with dumb puns and silly puzzles, but the end affected me in a way I never expected. That's kind of Undertale's specialty - playing with our expectations of what an RPG should be, subverting them, and using them to drive a story unique to what games can do. Its strong writing, integration of gameplay with storytelling, and acute understanding of its audience all build to something that surprises at every turn.


The Verdict
It's hard to express just how much I adore Undertale without spoiling anything significant, but that's what I love about it. It tells its story in such a dynamic way, and with such a great understanding of the RPG player's mindset, that it couldn't have been told in any other way. It's a masterfully crafted experience that I won't forget any time soon.

Score: 10/10 It might not be pretty, but Undertale is absolutely a work of art.​

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Exzore: The Rising - Now on Kickstarter
Posted: Aug 15, 2017, 07:52 pm by RPGWatch

[​IMG]An open word action RPG set in a medieval world, named Exzore : The Rising is now available on Kickstarter.

Tiny Shark Interactive Launches Kickstarter for Exzore: The Rising Open world action RPG features realistic character interactions and consequences,mechanical gadgets, modular crafting and more

London, England--August 15, 2017--Tiny Shark Interactive has launched the Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for their upcoming open world action RPG, Exzore: The Rising for PC, XboxOne and PlayStation4, along with a new trailer for the game. The campaign will run through September 18 and may be found at

"[Tiny Shark] looks like it has the basics sorted out and a clear direction for how the systems will work together. Exzore: The Rising has a lot of potential," said RPGamer. Commented One Angry Gamer, "The one thing that I was most intrigued by...was the crafting mechanic. This feature allowed players to tinker around with different sword combinations by mixing and matching hilts, blades and crosses. This could be one of the highlights of the game depending on how well it all plays out and how effective the different weapon choices are when you utilize them in combat."

Set in the medieval world of Eogaan, the game follows Damien Clive, former commander of the Exzore army unit, as he is emerges from the ashes of his betrayal to seek retribution and regain his honor. Exzore: The Rising features the use of "mechanical gadgets" which give special abilities to the hero and can be used in combat and exploration. The game also features a unique Affinity system, which affects the player's experience and how the story unfolds as the character interacts with the game world and the various factions, as well as an extensive combat system that allows players to mix and match Exzore abilities in a wide variety of combos. Eogaan is split into four factions, each with its own community and rules. As you play, your interactions between the different factions will affect the game's story and how it progresses. Favor any faction of your choice to get special missions, rewards, benefits, and abilities. Each faction has its own motivations and agendas. The Affinity parameter will be altered as a consequence of player's choices in game. Every mission will alter affinity, increasing toward one and decreasing toward another. Affinities are important because they directly affect the character and mission progression, and play an important role in gameplay experience. Choose your faction and actions wisely, as they may alter how the story ends.
  • Play as an Exzore - As Master Exzore, you have the ability to equip up to six unique mechanical gadgets at a time - to help in combat and exploration. Each of these gadgets is different from one another and offers unique special abilities.
  • Faction Affinity System - Favor any faction of your choice to get special missions, rewards, benefits, and abilities. Each faction has its own motivations and agendas. Choose your faction carefully as it may alter the game progression and ending.
  • Companion - Icarus, your pet Golden Eagle is your most trusted ally in the field. Use his abilities to perform various scouting activities, from spotting targets or treasures to aiding in combat.
  • Dynamic World - Feel the game world react to various natural factors like time, seasons, weather (rain, snowfall, the wind), day-night cycle, etc. Player interaction and exploration alter the game world, making it more alive.
  • Smart Characters and Enemies - Every character in game has his/her own mind and will develop through the game. Everyone, right from common town folk to your greatest enemies will get smarter and stronger as you level up too.
  • Nonlinear Quests - Every quest in game is designed to be completed in many different ways. Every choice has its own unique outcomes and consequences.
  • Unique Combat system - Indulge in well-crafted combat system containing smart and challenging foes. Mix and match multiple Exzore abilities in combination with your weapons to create powerful combos.
Exzore: The Rising is expected to launch in late 2018​

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