With three people playing nearly a dozen different instruments, you might expect the jazzy album Intuit from multi-instrumentalist Kali Z Fasteau to be a bit overwhelming, aurally speaking. Especially since those instruments include a nai flute (which she describes as being an “oblique end-blown reed flute”), a mizmar (“a type of flagolet”), a djembe (a West African drum), a shaker (another African percussion instrument) and a aquasonic (“a metal bowed instrument with metal prongs”). But by having every song but two just be two people playing one instrument each, Fasteau keeps the music on Intuit rather simple but no less evocative.
Since the explosion of mobile games began, there’s been a bunch that seem like they’d work just as well, if not better, on a game console, and with a controller. But while few mobile games ever make that transition, the 2D, side-scrolling, puzzle-driven platformer Leo’s Fortune is bucking this trend by bringing this iOS, Android, Windows phone, and Amazon Fire game to Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, and Mac. And though it took a year to make the trip, it seems that it was time well spent.
While game developers usually start thinking about sequels after their games come out, and are successful, the good people at NeocoreGames actually conceived of The Incredible Adventures Of Van Helsing as a trilogy before the first game was released in 2012. With The Incredible Adventures Of Van Helsing III due out on PC at the end of May (and later on Mac and Xbox One), I spoke to narrative designer Viktor Juhasz and CCO Linda Bozoradi about this series, as well as what they’ve added, changed, and improved for this final chapter of the trilogy.
It was recently announced that like some of the bands that may be in them, the music games Guitar Hero and Rock Band will be making a comeback with Guitar Hero Live and Rock Band 4, maybe even before the end of the year. But if you hate music, don’t want to buy a guitar-shaped controller, or just can’t wait that long, you can sort of get the same kind of gameplay, and more, from Color Guardians, a side-scrolling endless runner, platformer, and color matching game for PlayStation 4, Vita, PC, and Mac.
In most puzzle games, solving the problems is the one and only goal. But in talking to Jake Jonghwa Kim, creative director of the platforming puzzle game Rooms The Unsolvable Puzzle — which is coming to PC, Mac, and Linux on May 1st — he not only noted how this sequel to Rooms: The Main Building came about, but also how explaining why you’re solving these puzzles makes this sequel better.
As someone who actually saw numerous R-rated ’80s action flicks on their opening weekends, it’s funny to now see them influencing video games that are enjoyed by people who not only weren’t old enough to see this movies in theaters back then, but neither were there parents. The latest of these is Gunslugs II, a side-scrolling shooter from Orangepixel that’s available for PCs, Mac, iOS, Android, and Ouya. Though in talking to Pascal Bestebroer, the one-man mastermind behind Orangepixel, it’s clear this game isn’t just a trip down memory lane.
In the realm of video games, there’s been flight simulators, driving simulators, even city planning simulators. And now there’s Goat Simulator from Sweden’s Coffee Stain Studios. With the game recently released on PC, and now being distributed in the U.S. by Deep Silver (y’know, the Saints Row people) — the Mac and Linux versions are available through the game’s website — I spoke to Line Jakobsen — who says “We haven’t really done titles for Goat Simulator, but executive director of goating sounds like a suitable title for me” — about the origins of this species.
Released in 1987, Shadowgate was one of the original point & click adventure games. Now this fantasy game is getting an updated upgrade from the original creators. One of whom, design director Karl Roelofs, recently explained how the game works, and how it will work differently than you remember it, when his company Zojoi releases it this August on PC and Mac (and later on iOS and Android).
When your studio is called SleepNinja Games, your publisher is Cartoon Network Games, and your new game is called Monsters Ate My Birthday Cake, you better have a sense of humor about yourself. Thankfully, that seems to be the case with Justin Baldwin, who identifies himself as the Arty-fart McGoo / Animation Dood / Overall Design Person’r on Cake, and his cohort Alex Atkins, Cake’s self-identified “Head Writerererer/Designer.”