God is faithful. We’ve all heard these words. We’ve read them, said them, and sung them. And we’ve felt themGod’s faithfulness is a palatable experience of his love. It’s his love tasted and seen in our history. It’s the mechanics of his love wired to fulfill his promises for our good. In fact, God’s faithfulness and his steadfast love are so closely intertwined that in Psalm 33 they’re basically the same.
Among Thorns takes you to a dying cyberpunk world, one that is suffering from a technological plague. Even with the world falling to pieces, Cora Bry still needs to get paid, and you will join her as she works a shady job under the glowing neon lights, solving puzzles and talking to the people she meets.
Solitude, a short game about abandoning your old life and becoming a shepherdess, is all about leaving the things that don’t make you happy behind. This is accomplished by walking through colorful, slightly surreal dioramas and clicking on things, which in itself is nice and calming. There’s also understated music, bleeping and blooping away most pleasurably in the background, and sheep are frolicking about as you slowly turn into a shepherdess.
All of this is delightfully strange and carries a nice message. You see, on your way to become more at peace with yourself, you have to help other people. These then turn into sheep and follow you, which… is a bit weird, actually. But then, so is the rest of Solitude.
The shepherding is not only a wonky metaphor or Jana Reinhardt’s personal escapism fantasy. It works on so many levels, from a simple “back to nature” thing to more complex ideas about society and even Christianity, if you want. Whatever you might read into the game, Solitude is a delight and totally worth the 15 minutes or so you’ll spend on it.
PG game designer Takahisa Taura here. It was my pleasure to share some new information and footage from NieR: Automata at E3 2016! Today I’d like to go a step further and give you an up-close look into our development processes, and share some of the challenges that the team and I have faced on this project. We hope you enjoy this taste of what it’s like on our side of the screen.
I’m afraid that this little taste is all I can give you right now, since we’re still working hard to get her just right. But I assure you that we’re going to capture everything you know and love about Bayonetta – every detail down to the exact sizes of her glasses and eyes – and bring you an amiibo that’ll meet your every expectation.
Let’s be real here. Gaming is an endurance sport. A true gamer spends hours playing, whether its a video game or board game.
Such dedication to the gaming arts requires stamina, and in order to maintain healthy energy levels, one must feed. But what to eat? Pizza and sandwiches are messy, time-consuming, and difficult to eat when your hands are otherwise occupied with controllers, playing cards, and game pieces.
Here then, are the five best snacks to nosh on while gaming:
1. Licorice. The best thing to do is get one of those giant tubs of Red Vines. They are easy to grab and eat, and they don’t make a mess—they aren’t sticky or crumbly, so they are the perfect go to treat when you need a sugar rush to keep you on high alert. Do not ever go for black licorice, because that is just gross.
2. Peanuts. Protein is essential to maintaining proper stamina when those intense battle scenes erupt. However, the worst thing you can do is try to shell your own peanuts. It takes too much concentration and work, which distracts you from the game. It’s also a huge mess. That’s one reason why we shun pistachios as well. Instead, get nuts that are pre-shelled. We like the honey roasted variety. However, you can also go for Peanut M&Ms, which are convenient and tasty.
3. Crackers. So here’s the thing: chips are great, but they are so messy, and they leave a disgusting greasy film on your fingertips. That’s a cardinal sin in gaming circles. Crackers are much more manageable, as they are baked and easier to pop into your mouth whole (most small varieties anyway). You can choose whichever kind of crack you want, but we like the baked crackers from Melaleuca. There are two varieties of Melaleuca crackers: multi-grain and seven-cheese.
4. Beef jerky. Again, you need protein to keep up the high energy needed for serious battles, and jerky is so damn tasty. It’s a bit expensive, but for special gaming events it can be a great treat. so go ahead and splurge.
5. Bottled water. No, this isn’t a food; but you have to stay hydrated to be at your best.
With Summer coming to a close, we at godsandheroes wanted to heat things up a bit! We’ve complied a list of our top ten video game crushes! We’ve stuck to one character per franchise and we decided to go with a mix of men and women (so don’t hate, appreciate).
Geralt of Rivia (The Witcher 1, 2 & 3)
Men want to be him, women want to be with him. This Medieval detective has won us over with his piercing eyes, handsome looks and his dark sense of humour. And he has a beard that grows in real time! Ladies love beards that grow in real time! Not only can you change his hairstyle and outfits in game (seriously, what more could you want?) but Geralt is also a lone wolf. You know that this fella won’t be bombarding you with needy texts at 2 in the morning.
This ‘”former professional gamer” turned mech pilot has quickly emerged as a fan favourite among the Overwatch crowd. In fact, you can see at least 3 D.Va cosplayers at any event! Her sweet looks, combined with her kick-ass attitude (and that sweet, sweet mech), have really stolen our hearts.
Aela The Huntress (Skyrim)
One of the many companions that you can drag along with you on your travels across Tamreil is Aela! Not only is this woman a BEAST (quite literally), but she also has a great taste in makeup. Aela will even remind you that she’s ‘sworn to carry your burdens’. So hopefully she’ll deal with some of that emotional baggage as well as the hundreds of iron daggers we’ve piled onto her.
Big Boss/Naked Snake (Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater)
Big Boss snuck his way out of the metal Metal Gear series and straight into our hearts with his rugged charm, survival skills and fantastic mullet. This ‘man’s man’ is a key character in the Metal Gear franchise, and in Metal Gear 3 : Snake Eater, you gain a better understanding of his character. Plus you can make him eat dead frogs and rabbits. So the good times are endless!
Claire Redfield (Resident Evil 2)
Upon first glance, Claire Redfield appears to be the next door with her big, blue, bambi eyes and her cute, little ponytail. But this feisty red head has more to her than meets the eye! Having managed to escape Raccoon City, and the Umbrella Corporation, Claire seems unfazed by the infinite amounts of zombies that seem to come after her. She also has a great taste in outfits (we love the cowboy boots)!
Master Chief (The Halo Franchise)
Many people may argue that Master Chief’s electronic companion Cortana should have made the list. But they are wrong! Standing at an impressive 7 feet tall, this legendary Spartan is one of the most recognised faces in gaming today. But just what is it about him that makes him so seductive? Is it the fact that we’ve never seen his face (everyone does love a bit of mystery after all) or is it THAT VOICE? We’re not sure, it’s probably both.
Commander Shephard – The Female Version (Mass Effect 3)
We decided to go with the female version of Shep on this one (seeing as there are a few too many men on this list already). Even though she is completely customisable in game, the original press for Mass Effect 3 showcased an awesome, bad-ass, militant character. A pretty, red head one.
Chun-Li (Street Fighter)
Chun-Li has been around for so long that she feels like the childhood sweetheart among crushes. This courageous Chinese soldier is not just a pretty face! She has the ability to drive a flurry of kicks straight into your gut! Her sweet and elegant personality coupled with her iconic hairstyle make her one of the more memorable female characters out there.
Alyx Vance (Half-life 2)
We haven’t seen Alyx for a while now (since 2004 in fact). But this lovely hacker has left a lasting impression on us at Green Man Gaming. Not only does Alyx dress like a normal person (which is hard to say about many other characters out there: we’re looking at you Bayonetta), but she also manages to rescue Gordon on a few occasions. It’s also hard not to fancy a girl that can take over and control Combine technology.
Lara Croft (The Tomb Raider Series)
No top ten “sexy characters” list would be complete without this classic heroine. Ever since this feisty female hit our screens in 1996, Lara has left an impression on men everywhere. Or is that, two impressions? We’re pleased to say that Lara has gotten better with age and we admit that it’s hard not to develop a crush on such a clever and adventurous woman. Hollywood agreed with this and turned transferred the game character into a full movie franchise.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is very nearly upon us, and what better way to get hyped for the new game than looking back at what made Deus Ex great by revisiting the original game and Human Revolution! Way back when, had a legendary team of developersand other huge old-school PC gaming names, Ion Storm formed a new studio based.
The first game this team produced was Deus Ex, released in 2000. Deus Ex was a seminal title, simply based around the fact that the game was hugely open-ended, featuring branching dialogue paths and a variety of gameplay options (Never upgrade Swimming, though) – Deus Ex was incredibly ahead of its time, and it took a good decade or so before other games caught up to the scope that Deus Ex had at the turn of the century. Ion Storm produced a sequel; Invisible War several years later. But after that, the series had been dormant until Eidos Montreal took control of the series.
This team’s first game was a return to form for the Deus Ex franchise, featuring a new setting, time and protagonist. In Deus Ex: Human Revolution you play as Adam Jensen, a security officer searching for a scientist who had been kidnapped, who also happened to be his Fiance. Human Revolution combined this with a now iconic Black and Gold look to portray a sense of technological renaissance and bring into question the nature of Transhumanism- a central theme in the Deus Ex series, blending together human augmentations alongside technological advancement by grafting on enhanced limbs that exceed traditional human capabilities.
After an event in the events of Human Revolution, the new title, Mankind Divided is poised to pick the conversation right back up, with augmented humans being marginalised by the rest of society for their reliance upon technology for basic function. Set in Prague, Mankind Divided also brings back the colour palette, more muted and dour to reflect the approach to the game’s new story arcs.
Featuring massively open-ended gameplay styles alongside a brand-new upgrade tree, you can choose to play the role of Adam Jensen however you want, whether that be an all guns blazing approach or a more unseen, stealth look. Mankind Divided is shaping up to be a worthy successor to the legendary Deus Ex name, and we can’t wait to play the new entry in the series.
The “sabbatical” that former Rockstar North president Leslie Benzies was on has proven to be far more complicated than it first appeared.
When Kotaku reported that Benzies had left Rockstar North back in January, the company told us he’d been on a sabbatical for several months and had “decided not to return to work for the company.”
Benzies paints a more complicated story. In a press release announcing a lawsuit against his former employer, Benzies claims he was “enticed by Rockstar” to take a sabbatical after the launch of Grand Theft Auto V. During that time, he reportedly discovered “numerous deceptions” designed to push him out of the company and deny him royalty payments to the tune of $150 million.
In December 2008, Rockstar parent company Take-Two Interactive announced long-term employment contracts and a “profit sharing arrangement” with Benzies and Rockstar co-founders Dan and Sam Houser.
“This new chapter in our successful relationship further aligns the interests of our creative teams with those of our shareholders,” said Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick at the time.
Benzies’ lawsuit says the agreements were identical for all three, and Sam Houser’s actions to remove Benzies from the arrangement was “the product of what turned out to be a lengthy deception” driven by “mounting resentments after many years of high praise.”
Benzies specifically called out the statement Rockstar issued to Kotaku about his sabbatical, calling it “out-of-bounds and inaccurate.” At the time, Benzies and Rockstar were in the midst of a “lengthy mediation” to find a middle ground, and Benzies disputes that he chose to leave:
“When attempting to resume his duties upon conclusion of his sabbatical on April 1, 2015, Mr. Benzies found himself unable to enter the Rockstar North office because his facilities access device had been deactivated. After being let inside by building security, Mr. Benzies was then ordered to leave by the Rockstar North office manager without reason.”
Since Benzies filed his lawsuit, Rockstar has countersued, claiming Benzies isn’t owed any additional money, due to breach of contract.
On March 23, 2015, Rockstar says Benzies sent a letter to the company asking for “exact financial parity with his co-Principals, prospectively and retroactively as of the Effective Date of the 2009 Royalty Plan.” In other words, he wanted to be on equal financial footing with the Housers.
On April 2, Benzies reportedly sent another letter asserting termination of his employment for “good reason,” in which the employee argues the employer has negatively impacted the employee’s ability to do their job. Alternatively, Benzies argued he’d been fired “without cause,” arguing he was due a compensation package involving royalties, even if he left.
Rockstar confirmed the group had been in mediation with Benzies, but negotiations were “unsuccessful” and disagreed with his “good reason” argument for leaving the company. Furthermore, Rockstar argued the royalty arrangement was such that Benzies was barred from even making the argument, as he had “no right to contest the royalty allocation” and even doing so was a “breach” of the plan he’d signed years ago.
The only way Benzies could be awarded the royalties he’s asking for, claims Rockstar, is by a group called the Allocation Committee, which includes Houser. “Sam Houser would have the sole authority to determine what, if any, royalty percentage should be allocated to Benzies,” reads the suit.
This lawsuit is a thorny situation, and it’s just getting started. We’ll be keeping an eye on it as it develops.