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Interview with Samuli Viikinen, developer of Rochard

Rochard Screenshot

So, let me guess... You haven't played Rochard yet. In fact, there's probably a pretty good chance you haven't even heard of it—and that's a damned shame, since it's one of the best download-only titles I've played all year. I gave it an absolutely glowing review, but a game like this deserves more. So, in my pursuit of fighting the good fight, I'd like to present this brief interview I was fortunate enough to have with the Lead Level Designer of Rochard, Samuli Viikinen.

Interview with Niv Fisher of SpikySnail Games

The Splatters Screenshot

At PAX Prime 2011, one of the smaller indie-sized games that caught my eye was a strange, almost unclassifiable project called The Splatters, about shooting colored blobs around small arenas and exploding them at every opportunity. It was a blast to play even if it's a bit difficult to describe, and I'm quite pleased to share a brief interview with one of the developers, Niv Fisher of SpikySnail Games.

Sideway: New York Review

Dry, White Toast

Sideway: New York Screenshot

HIGH Solving a rooftop maze by shifting "gravity" using the surrounding walls.

LOW Taking the last block of life off the boss only to have him regain it and kill me as I scrambled to pick the controller back up.

WTF What does the Knuckler boss have to do with anything?

Rochard Review

Southern (Physics-based) Comfort

Rochard Screenshot

HIGH The final weapon upgrade is fantastically entertaining.

LOW What's up with the evil guardsmen sounding so effeminate?

WTF "Git'er done" is still in use a thousand years into the future?!?

Orcs Must Die! Review

That's a Whole Lotta Musts

Orcs Must Die! Screenshot

HIGH The colorful, cartoony style of the game is appealing.

LOW The game feels flat, and holds no surprises.

WTF The near-total lack of character and world-building.

Containment: The Zombie Puzzler Hands-On Preview

Containment: The Zombie Puzzler Screenshot

A while ago, I covered the Seattle Indie Expo and I was blown away by the quality of the games being shown. Every one looked fantastic, but one that really caught my attention was Containment: The Zombie Puzzler.

Portal 2 Third Opinion

There Better be Some Cheese at the End of this Maze

Portal 2 Screenshot

HIGH Sabotaging a turret assembly line for hilarious results.

LOW A series of giant test rooms where the challenge stems from spotting the portal-able wall.

WTF How do you "freshen up" carbon dioxide, GLaDOS?

Video: Portal: No Escape short film

The world of Portal seems to be as compelling a place for movie makers to lose themselves in as it is for gamers. This is the second Portal short film I've seen this year that could only be described as a jaw-dropping accomplishment. The other seems a bit more light-hearted, but both capture Portal superbly. This particular short film is even more extraordinary when you consider how it was made.

Catherine Review

He's Dreaming of Electric Sheep

Catherine Screenshot

HIGH: How Vincent finds out the antagonist's identity.

LOW: The cathedral bell won't stop ringing. EVER.

WTF: What the heck is the Stage 3 boss supposed to represent? No, wait, don't tell me.

Operation Cherry Blossom, Catherine, and Being Human (UK)

So, it's no secret that I am a big fan of Monster Hunter. Although the series does have issues (being inscrutable to newcomers or running the best version on the missing-a-second-analog-nub-and-no-true-online PSP to name just two) I am a true believer in the franchise and I think it has much to offer. Sadly, it's only been able to carve out a very small niche for itself here in the United States, but there's now an opportunity—maybe—to help change that.

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