Reviews

EGX Rezzed 2019

Another Rezzed has come and gone but we have finally found time to sit down and look back over the event! Sadly we were only available for one day this time around but we were determined to try and check out as many games as possible and catch up with some familiar faces too! So let’s get onto the games we managed to get our hands on at Rezzed!

Untitled Goose Game – House House – Lefranzine

It would have been rude not to make this game the first one I queued (for 30 odd minutes) for after missing it at EGX in September due to it always being busy! So I headed to the Nintendo area and patiently waited for my turn to control The Goose. If you have not yet heard of this game, it’s a delightfully humorous game of deception and theft but you are a horrible goose who it tormenting a poor groundskeeper by stealing everything! There is a to-do list which in the demo you aim to complete within the time limit. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the game as overall it is simple and fun in design and gameplay. I hope we get a release date soon as I think this will certainly be a great addition to any Switch collection!

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Dimension Hunter 2 – Pocket Money Games – Lefranzine

I’m not going to lie, I saw a free seat and thought, hey, why not? I’m glad I did as I landed at the Pocket Money Games booth and ended up playing 3 of the 4 titles they had on offer. The first was Dimension Hunter 2, a FPS in which you dual wield weapons and shoot robots while grooving to a killer soundtrack. I really enjoyed the music and gameplay combined and it did remind me of Doom only with a different style soundtrack. The sensitivity was really high while looking around which resulted in me being pretty rubbish at shooting but when I spoke to the guys at the booth, they did advise that there would be options to turn this down. I liked the style, the music and the overall look so would recommend you keep your eyes peeled for this one.

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SPD (Special Pursuit Department) – Pocket Money Games – Lefranzine

Next up was SPD which reminded me of some of the tappy mobile games you might be able to get. As you play a police man chasing after a convict or robber while trying to move between lanes quickly to avoid obstacles while also trying to collect doughnuts, you’ll be glued to the screen. Initially, I thought I was playing the robber so ran straight into cars but then I found my rhythm and managed to get further into the course. It’s a simple concept but it was fun, a little frustrating and fast but a good laugh nevertheless. If you manage to bring down the crime rate, you’ll unlock new things in the final game but I certainly had some fun with the demo!

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The Twisted Tower – Pocket Money Games – Lefranzine

The final game we managed to get our hands on at the PMG stand was The Twisted Tower. This arcade platformer sees you fighting monsters while trying to negotiate moving platforms in order to prove your worth against the trials of the witches’ covenant. It’s a good looking game which has very well executed mechanics as you grab special spells to fire off and incoming beasties and traverse up and down to collect diamonds in order to power up your exit at the top of each tower level. It’s colourful, bright and enjoyable with that kind of pick up and play feel which would be great for gaming on the go. The games from PMG were delightful to play and we would recommend you make sure you check them out over at their website!

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Ecosystem – Tom Johnson – Lefranzine

I saw fish and thought I would take a look but unfortunately I took over from another gamer part way through with no clue what I was doing. Now I would like to think I used to be good at simulators, however creating an ecosystem at the bottom of the ocean turned out not to be my moment to shine. I tried to make a nursery area in which to try to place the fish eggs so they might flourish, I popped some plant life down and before I knew it, I had a multitude of creatures to manage! Suddenly, they started dying and I had no idea how to fix it. Sadly, I didn’t get the hang of the controls and found it difficult to work out what to do to fix my nursery. I dare say with some practice and some sort of tutorial you might be a bit more successful than I was!

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Swimsanity! – Decoy Games – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

Now if there’s one thing we have learned playing these couch co-op style games, it’s that being in tune is one of the keys to success. Swimsanity is great! You go head to head or work together to take out your opponents in an action-packed underwater battleground. Your character will have a special ability which will reign down crazy and helpful items (including a piranha!) to help you takedown your friends! It’s not overly complicated with only a few controls to master. The final game will support local and online co-op and I can certainly see this being very popular for streamers or for those running events! We went up against fellow Press members and without much communication and only pure concentration on the task at hand, we managed to win 2-0! Couples who game together, sometimes convincingly, beat other people together it seems! Highly recommend this title and we will definitely be looking to add this to our Switch collection to join the other couch co-op games!

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The Breakfast Club – Foggy Box – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

If you’re a fan of I Am Bread, then The Breakfast Club will definitely be for you! Physics based food fun with a large dash of crazy and the capability to end friendships… this game offers a lot of laughs. I was not great at this to be honest, whenever I thought I was being gentle enough or sensible, the game had other ideas and before you knew it, I had destroyed the eggs or catapulted the butter off the table leading to failure. In other words, there’s a reason why DingleTheViking doesn’t let me in the kitchen to help cook dinner. Another good couch co-op title to add to the collection for 1-4 players and the bonus of online play too!

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Caveblazers – Deadpan Games – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

If you like your rougelike platformers which allow you to pick up some crazy items, fight a multitude of creatures, play with a friend and then take their ghost on your travels when they inevitably die, then you might be up for this one! The game is already available on Steam and Nintendo Switch offering solo play and local co-op should you wish to play with a friend. I particularly like the pixel art style and even though I was a terrible cave buddy, it was good fun!

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Close to the Sun – Wired Productions – Lefranzine

DingleTheViking swapped out on this one as he thought it would be up my street with its Bioshock looking art style throwing you only a mysterious ship created by Nikola Tesla and you’ve got yourself a horror game. Now I’m rubbish at horror games, I always want to play them but I’m too chicken to go through them. I jumped a couple of times during the demo as I explored with Rose, opening doors and navigating my way around trying to solve some of the mini puzzles. It’s clear from the start that something is amiss and as you explore, you’ll be finding out just how bad things are. I decided to only play the first ‘chapter’ to allow others to play the game but it certainly was enjoyable and intriguing. The game looks good and reminds me a little of that Dishonored and Bioshock style, it feels eerie and does give off the horror game vibe. One to look out for!

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Guntastic – Ludicrous Games – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

Couch co-op/versus games are proving very popular and Guntastic offers endless deathmatch rounds that could really go on forever! It’s an arcade style game with shooting, chaos, a sprinkling of gore and the possibility to end some friendships! It’s fast paced, crazy and can catch you out in a moment if you’re not focused with the one shot one kill mechanic! We came in halfway through two young lads battling it out and after a few rounds, DingleTheViking was in second place! I did not do so well but we had a lot of fun playing it!

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Partisans 1941 – Alter Games – Lefranzine

I thought I would give this real time strategy game a shot as there was a free seat however I’m not very good at these types of games, especially when a poorly executed or badly timed command can end up with your squad being decimated. Set in World War II, you’ll attempt to use your skills and tactics to complete missions and further advance behind enemy lines. My first attempt at the demo mission did not go well I accidentally put one of my squad into a firing position instead of hiding them in cover while I attempted a more stealthy approach. Very quickly, my squad were killed and the demo over so I tried again and managed to last a little longer and even managed to complete the first part of the objective but sadly, my one remaining soldier was unable to take things any further. If you enjoy your real time strategy RPG titles, you may want to consider adding this one to your collection!

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Space Cows – Happy Corruption – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

How would you feel if you were a gelatinous cow floating through zero gravity trying to save other cows from mootants on an infested milk station? Well I’m really not sure but all we can say is that this twin-stick shooter was crazy, colourful and hilarious. It’s a game that had us smiling the entire time we were playing it as we negotiated baddies, lasers, collecting milk and trying to survive! It is such fun and a little silly which sometimes is what you need! The game looks great too with colourful side scrolling levels that are simply delightful. Be sure to keep your eyes out for this udderly fun game!

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My Friend Pedro – Devolver Digital – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

If you caught the Nindies showcase a few weeks back, you may have seen My Friend Pedro, a game in which you fight your way through the criminal underground with the help of your sentient banana friend. It looked awesome and immediately made it onto my eShop wishlist so I was chuffed when we got to have a go at Rezzed. So how did it play? The split aiming coupled with slow motion focus when required was a little tricky to get the hang of initially but I can see that with time, you could end up making it look easy as you glide, flip and shoot your way through the levels. It is a lot of fun and also challenging even at the beginning while you’re learning the controls which is nice as it encouraged me to try and use everything in the repertoire to progress and survive. I am really looking forward to having this on the Switch and spending more time getting used to the controls. It’s going to be insane!

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Cuphead – Studio MDHR – Lefranzine & DingleTheViking

It would have been rude not to swing by and try out Cuphead on the Switch while the opportunity was available! Previously exclusive to Microsoft, Cuphead is now available on the Switch opening this classic run and gun action game with its distinctive 1930s art style up to a wider audience and boy are we glad! With single and multiplayer co-op, you can play as Cuphead or Mugman and shoot your way through levels to get to the end boss battles but that’s not always as easy as it sounds. It’s not an easy game and I died many times leaving DingleTheViking to fend for himself (sorry love!) but its certainly a game you can play over and over to learn the patterns and tricks that will help you get through and beat the bosses. I’m looking forward honing my skills and getting better at this game… if DingleTheViking will let me play of course!

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Warhammer Chaosbane – DingleTheViking

What do you get if you take Diablo’s gameplay mechanics, give them a bit of a twist and throw in the ever excellent Warhammer universe – naturally the result is Warhammer Chaosbane.

I’m always a fan of Warhammer IP Games, be it Fantasy or 40k themed. And being a fan of Diablo as well, this was a natural fit for me. This early demo offered only two of the four starting characters/classes. Offering the Empire Soldier and High Elf Mage options, though the menu did show the Dwarf Slayer (Ever one of my favourites in the table top games) and the Wood Elf Waywatcher.

Gameplay and controls were somewhat like the Diablo style, but with the added, really cool, class themed tweak to controls etc. With the Mage I played through the demo on, when you press the space bar you can control the movement of the last spell you’ve cast. A great example being a character-based area of effect slow spell, can hold space and move the spell away from you for a better time kiting etc.

Keep an eye out on Darkworld Gaming, I’m sure this is a title we’ll be covering more in depth nearer its release, I can’t wait!

Nanotale – DingleTheViking

Gaming is so prolific now, that it actually seems quite rare that someone does something really different. Most games are a spin of this, or a combination of this and that with their own style or whatever it might be.

Nanotale was different from anything I’ve played, certainly since the really old days of text based gaming. Nanotale uses the, fairly standard, WASD controls for movement, but that is pretty much where the “standard” ends and the “different” continues on. All interactions, combat and spells are done via typing! You press the space bar to enter the “spell mode” and anything interactable on the screen has a random word above it – this word is what you must type to target or interact with that object or enemy. Later on, once you unlock more offensive magic, a bar appears across the bottom with spell modifiers on it. So typing “LARGE” “RAY” and “HOT” will prepare a large ray beam fire spell, then simply aim it by typing the word above whatever you want to aim at, and BOOM a firey blast shoots forth, scorching anything in its path!

Nanotale was certainly one of the more unique games I played at Rezzed this year. It appears to be a really cute looking typing based game that was great fun – will be a great way of improving typing skills, or even testing out new keyboards!

Cat Quest 2 – DingleTheViking & Lefranzine

I’ve no idea how, but I completely missed Cat Quest when it launched. I’m not sure if it slipped under my radar, or if I just didn’t really look at it for some reason. But I discovered it in a Nintendo Switch sale about 2 months ago, and it has been one of my most played games since. So it is safe to say that my little heart squealed with joy when I saw the big sign for Cat Quest 2 in the Pqube area of Rezzed this year!

Cat Quest 2 seems to be a bit more of the same, what I played suggested that gameplay was pretty similar for the most part. Leaving the main new things being the updated story and the new “two character” mechanic. This time around you control both a cat and a dog, but only one at a time, with an extra button (when playing single player) to switch between the two. The more astute of you might have noticed that “when playing single player” there… yes, Cat Quest 2 is now a 2 player game! You and a friend can control one of the characters each and quest through the pun-tastic world of the cat kingdom together!

And yes, I will be dragging Lefranzine into the game with me!

Katana Zero – DingleTheViking

I’ll keep coverage of this one short, as we’ve just received a review copy of it – so expect a full review in the coming days.

But in short, Katana Zero was the game of the show for me! Askiisoft seemingly looked at some of the indie games I’ve enjoyed recently, and said “We’ll make a game for that guy”, retro style graphics, a great story and a touch of comedy all mixed in with a cool game mechanic for this title. Throw in the fact the protagonist is a freaking samurai and you’ve got me sold!

Warhammer Vermintide 2: Winds of Magic – DingleTheViking

Having already talked about one in our coverage of EGX Rezzed 2019, you know I like my Warhammer. So it will come as no surprise that I was eager to also get my mitts on Vermintide 2: Winds of Magic while we were at Rezzed. Winds of Magic is the first expansion to Vermintide 2, and launches later this year. They’ve taken everything that was already great about Vermintide and improved on it.

This expansion adds a new enemy faction, Beastmen, to the game – “As a meteor crashes down on Reikland, Beastmen emerge from the depths to claim it as a herdstone” is a paraphrase of the games “blurb”. It also adds increased level cap, new weapon options and a new higher difficulty level. If you like Warhammer, or already play Vermintide, then keep an eye out for this one releasing in 2019.

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