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issue 123 june 2016 5.

99
gamesradar.com/opm

world exclusive

unchArted 4
reviewed!
Has Nathan Drake
struck gold again?

hands-on!

mirrorS
edge
Massive Catalyst
playtest, because you
gotta have Faith

All-slime classic gets reinvented on PS4

MAFIA III: Its GtA IN NEW ORLEANs!


TiTanFall 2 breaks cover aT lasT
KANE AND AbLE: EuRO 2016 pREDICtED

e x T e n d e d p l aY !

Final
FanTasY xv
New screens, new secrets, new movie

ISSUe 123 / JUne 2016

Future Publishing Ltd, Quay House, The Ambury,


Bath BA1 1UA, United Kingdom
tel +44 (0) 1225 442244 fax: +44 (0) 1225 732275
email opm@futurenet.com twitter @OPM_UK
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welcome
Y

es, you are staring at the ghost of


oPM past. yes, my doughy frame does
bear an uncanny resemblance to the
1984 manifestation of Gozer. Dont, however,
go calling 555-2368. Im merely filling in
while editor Matt takes a spring break,
and in doing so helping the team source
spook-tacular exclusives such as the first
hands-on with Ghostbusters on PS4.
Making an official tie-in is one of the
toughest challenges in all of gaming, and our
tale of new studio Fireforges efforts with
this one begins on p52. Additionally, we look
back at 36 years of PkE-tracing, Egonworshipping goodness in the complete
Ghostbusters chronology, from p58. All
without a who you gonna joke in sight.
(Dont say it. Dont even think it.)
From uncharted territory to Uncharted
territory: we also have the first review of
Drakes latest. Is it also his greatest? Flick
to p74 to see. Plus playtests of Mafia III,
Mirrors Edge Catalyst, Final Fantasy XV and
more. Its a privilege to be haunting these
pages once more. Enjoy the mag.

eDItoRIaL
acting editor Ben Wilson @Benjiwilson
Managing art editor Milford Coppock @milfcoppock
production editor Andrew Westbrook @andy_westbrook
staff writer Jen Simpkins @itsJensim
staff writer Ben Tyrer @bentyrer
ContRIBUtoRS
words Jenny Baker, Ben Borthwick, Matthew Clapham,
Edwin Evans-Thirlwell, Matt Elliott, Jordan Farley,
David Houghton, Leon Hurley, Daniella Lucas, Ben Maxwell,
Dave Meikleham, James Nouch, Louis Pattison, Matthew Pellett,
Rhiannon Rees, Sam Roberts, Matt Sakuraoka-Gilman,
Chris Schilling, Tom Sykes, Robin Valentine, Iain Wilson
design Rob Speed
aDVeRtISIng
commercial sales director Clare Dove
advertising director Andrew Church
account manager Steve Pyatt
advertising manager Michael Pyatt
for ad enquiries contact andrew.church@futurenet.com
maRKetIng
Group marketing manager Laura Driffield
Marketing manager Kristianne Stanton
PRoDUCtIon & DIStRIBUtIon
production controller Vivienne Calvert
production manager Mark Constance
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game of the month


Ghostbusters PS3
ghoStBUSteRS faVe
Stay Puft Marshmallow Man

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wEVE PLAyED
GHoSTBUSTERS
oN PS4 AND
Look BACk oN
36 yEARS IN
Ben Wilson
actinG editor
THE CoMPLETE ben.wilson@futurenet.com
CHRoNoLoGy. @Benjiwilson

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this months naught y stream-crossers

Chief executive Zillah Byng-Thorne


Non-executive chairman Peter Allen
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Jen Simpkins

Ben tyrer

andy Westbrook

milford Coppock

game of the month


Dark Souls III
ghoStBUSteRS faVe
Gozer

game of the month


Uncharted 4: A Thiefs End
ghoStBUSteRS faVe
Egon Spengler

game of the month


Stikbold
ghoStBUSteRS faVe
Librarian Ghost

game of the month


Tom Clancys The Division
ghoStBUSteRS faVe
Peter Venkman

staff writer
Spent month hella salty
over being bodied on the
new hotness. In English:
lost a couple of Street
Fighter V matches online.

staff writer
Barely slept for a full week
while playing Ghostbusters
PS4 and reviewing
Uncharted 4. The ultimate
first world problem.

production editor
Favourite birthday present
from the team? Not his
TMNT Funko Pop. Nor his
bottle of pricey plonk. His
Euro 2016 sticker album.

ManaGinG art editor


Finally graced us all with
his karaoke rendition of
Back In The USSR. Team
verdict: 7/10. Hey, its
still a good score.

003

highlights
The big 10

006 MAFIA III


Its GTA in New Orleans! Hop in the passenger
seat as we cruise through the Deep South.
preview

032 FInAl FAntAsy XV


Digging up demo secrets ahead of the main
games release in September.
preview

040 MIrrors EdgE


CAtAlyst
Pain in the glass or miraculous return to form?
Find out as we playtest Faiths latest.
feature

052 ghostbustErs
One of the 80s most iconic film franchises
takes its PS4 bow and weve gone hands-on.
review

074 unChArtEd 4:
A thIEFs End
scouring our way through nates greatest
adventure yet, as he braces himself for
one final treasure hunt.

review

080 dArk souls III


Thought Ghostbusters library ghost was
terrifying? Now try the hellscape of Lothric.
review

088 rAtChEt & ClAnk


The luscious Lombax and his robot
chum return in glorious HD-o-vision.

sUBsCRiBE NOW!

Want something not-so-strange


delivered directly to your
neighbourhood on a monthly
basis and two free pop!
Vinyls to boot? turn to p66

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044

043

080

040

032

074

084

068

088

036

085

s E c T i o n s aT a G l a n c E

THE
biG 10

prEviEws

006

031

Latest info, screens


and playtests
All the hottest news

fEaTurEs

rEviEws

nETwork

rETro
sTaTion

To-the-point,
detailed analysis

In-depth verdicts on
every big new game

Max out your PS4,


online and off

Classics revisited

048

074

097

106

THE Games index


087 AdAMs VEnturEs: orIgIns
064 bAtMAn
099 broForCE
080 dArk souls III
106 dEMons souls
098 dIrt rAlly
099 EA sports uFC 2
086 EntEr thE gungEon
100 FAllout 4
032 FInAl FAntAsy XV
042 FurI
052 ghostbustErs
045 god EAtEr: rEsurrECtIon
045 god EAtEr 2: rAgE burst
114 guItAr hEro 2
104 hItMAn
044 hypEr lIght drIFtEr
036 lEgo stAr WArs:
thE ForCE AWAkEns
046 loVEly plAnEt
109 MAd MAX
006 MAFIA III
046 MEkAzoo
092 MInECrAFt story ModE:
EpIsodE 5
040 MIrrors EdgE CAtAlyst
095 Mlb: thE shoW 16
087 MXgp 2
087 nItro+ blAstErz
088 rAtChEt & ClAnk
094 rpublIquE
046 sErAph
093 sEVErEd
043 shErloCk holMEs:
thE dEVIls dAughtEr
038 snIpEr ElItE 4
064 south pArk:
thE FrACturEd but WholE
094 stIkbold
068 strEEt FIghtEr V
046 sWord Art onlInE:
holloW rEAlIzAtIon
046 tAlEs oF bErsErIA
018 tItAnFAll 2
064 tMnt:
MutAnts In MAnhAttAn
105 toM ClAnCys thE dIVIsIon
085 trACkMAnIA turbo
074 unChArtEd 4: A thIEFs End
084 uEFA Euro 2016
094 unEpIC
064 thE WAlkIng dEAd:
sEAson 3
010 WWE 2k17
012 zEro tIME dIlEMMA

005

This is what its all about taking


down goons in the hazy southern
sun. Though cover-shooting is the
simplest of many approaches.

006

the late 60s setting brings a lot


of heavy themes, and hangar 13 isnt
shying away from any of them.

10 Taking cover

which wwe star gets the 2K17 glory?

14 Tick, Tick, boom!

guile joins the street fighter v roster.

16 french connecTion

oPm plays through the euros on Pes.

TheBig10
STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

organised crime
goes open world
in mafia iii

new bordeaux hands-on confirms that


when it comes to story, youre the boss
this could be
the year that
mafia finally
makes it big.
with a solid
foundation
in 2004s
Ps2 original,
last-gens mafia ii blended sublime,
snappy combat with silky smooth
driving, while its fantastic period
soundtrack made its tremendously
evocative 50s world one in which to
truly wallow. it never quite nailed the
full open-world experience, however,
playing like a linear action game
(albeit a great one) with brilliant set
dressing. but thats all changing for
this third instalment.
series fans need not worry. new
developer hangar 13 taking over
from original creator 2K Czech,
while absorbing a fair few of that
studios staff isnt losing sight of
what has made these mob tales so
beloved. the thoughtful, grown-up
narrative remains, this time carried
into 1968 by new protagonist
lincoln Clay, a vietnam vet and exmember of the black mafia. acting

01

as a microcosm for americas


late 60s troubles, Clay brings a
clip-full of heavy themes with him,
and hangar 13 isnt shying away
from any of them.
also unmistakable is mafias
trademark sense of a time and
place, this time brought to life
through the city of new bordeaux.
its okay, you can say new orleans
to all intents and purposes, thats
basically what it is. the locale teems
with startling atmosphere and
period detail, the iconic melodies of
the flower power era permeating
its every corner, flooding the actionadventure with discordant tones of
joy and upheaval.
Southern diScomfort
what has changed is the way you
navigate mafias dense, historical
storytelling. no longer does that
world speed by as background
detail while you race through a rigid
campaign structure. in mafia iii,
freedom, choice and possibility are
at the core of everything.
and dont go thinking that hangar
13 has muddied new bordeaux

007

The Big10
STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

with unrelated side-missions and


goofy, diversionary escapades.
everything you do is part of the
main story, and every action pushes
you forwards along lincolns path
of revenge against the italian mob
who betrayed his crew. its just
that every objective now has many
angles of attack, taking in a raft of
disparate, eclectic possibilities, wide
open to be tackled by any means
you can dream up. imagine hectic,
guerrilla-style street combat with a
dash of hitmans strategic forward
planning, and youre getting close.

008

Street fighter
to bring down the presiding power,
lincoln, aided by three lieutenants
the gangland bosses of the
citys smaller irish, haitian and
italian crews has to steadily and
progressively snatch control of its
various rackets that are dotted
about the city. this means reducing
to zero the income that each
sideline brings in, via a rich array
of different methods. each target
hit cuts the mobs profits by a set
amount, and youre free to strike
any that take your fancy, as long
as you get the job done.
supply trucks can be destroyed
in madcap road battles. italian
enforcers can be hunted down at
their hideouts, and assassinated
in any way you wish. blaze through
their goons first; find a stealthier

route to your quarry; or enjoy


a freeform blend of the two. it
doesnt matter, so long as they go
down. hell, you could even remotely
plant C4 in just the right spot, or
recon the block for a convenient
sniping spot and then walk away as
if a ghost. hangar 13s motto for
mafia iii is no failure but death, and
the games robust, accommodating
combat systems live up to that
through every cover-based
shootout, explosive booby trap and
silent underworld takedown.
those three lieutenants of
yours add an extra layer of
possibility by way of the perks they
furnish in return for your favour.
handing out stolen territory to
your trusted heavies earns you
everything from noise-making lures
and on-demand delivery trucks full
of guns and ammo, to dial-a-goon
hit squads for heavy assaults,
plus plenty of health and armour
support. Just make sure you treat
them fairly. if any one of them ever
feels betrayed by favouritism,
events can turn very ugly. how
ugly, we havent yet seen, but a

every objecTive has


many angles, open To be
Tackled by any means
you can dream up.

Sim city

for all its arcadey handling, the


tech underpinning mafia iiis smooth
driving is running a seriously powerful
simulation. it can even detect tyre
temperature and the weight of the
remaining gas in the tank.

threat of imminent violence from


a furious irishman implies there
might be major, game-changing
consequences down the road.
Self-made man
while waiting to discover what
those consequences might be,
however, theres plenty to keep
lincoln busy, such as robbing italian
businesses for big financial scores;
or creeping past gangsters as they
beat up protesting hippies and lay
concrete foundations enhanced
with dead bodies; or tapping the
phone lines of mafia strongholds
to get information that might help
persuade opposing bosses to join
your burgeoning empire rather
than take a bullet to the skull.
even mafia iiis more scripted,
set-piece-driven missions which
cap off the take-down of each key
racket offer plenty of scope for
authorship. do you infiltrate that
hotel penthouse by driving straight
into the underground car park
in a known mobsters (recently
stolen) ride, and then nonchalantly
take the elevator up? or do you
make a statement in the lobby with
a machine gun and a handful of
grenades? there are many stories
to be told in mafia iii, but every
one of them will be your own.
sold on mafias mature sandbox action
or prefer it crazier? Tweet @opm_uk.

cars, lights, signposts: environmental

details deliver a brilliantly lived-in world.

The series has always


had a classy, period feel.
Theyre like sumptuous
holiday destinations.

The nights are as moody as the days


are bright. just look at that lighting.

mafia iiis combat is


always satisfying, but
the death animations
really make it sing.

009

Were not sure exactly who this guy is, but anyone hanging around in an underground car park, smoking, wearing a hat, has to be a tad dodgy. right?

mafia iii might well have


the shiniest cars on ps4.
Well, until the bullets
start flying, at least.

wwe 2k16s Community


Creations options give
a good sense of wholl
be on 2k17s roster.

010

Superstars fight for


WWE 2K17 glory
Cover campaigns begin as new roster additions emerge
In the world of
WWE, the end of
WrestleMania
season is regarded
as the beginning of
a new year of
storylines. Here in the videogame
world, it means something else, too:
the countdown to the next WWE
game has begun.
Though official
announcement of
WWE 2K17 is still
yet to arrive, the
debate over who
should be the next
cover star has
already started in the locker room.
At WrestleMania, we met with more
than 20 superstars to find out whos
the most deserving of the glory.
Ill say point blank that Im the
hardest working man in the WWE,
boasts Ryback, justifying himself

02

one of many self-nominations in a list


that includes The Miz, the Dudley
Boyz, The New Day and Zack Ryder
(whose partner Emma suggested
that they appear together as the
newest power couple of WWE).
NXT Champion Finn Balor, smiles
Balor, following suit. What if he no
longer holds the NXT title at 2K17s
launch? Balor
barely pauses.
Maybe WWE
World Heavyweight
Champion Finn
Balor? he says.
Not everybodys
interested in selfglory, however. Presenter Renee
Young tips Dean Ambrose, Jake The
Snake Roberts fancies Bray Wyatt
because hes unique, Sami Zayn
picks Seth Rollins, for his bang-up
job as champ, and both Usos are
hoping for Roman Reigns (hes been

roman
reigns has
been working
his ass off.

wwe talk
brock Lesnar and
Paul heyman deserve
to be on the cover of
the next videogame
because theres no
bigger box office
attraction in the
wwe. as the saying
goes: Then, now and
forever. brock Lesnar
is the conquerer of
the Undertakers
undefeated streak.
why would you deprive
the gaming audience
of the privilege?
Paul heyman

advocate for brock Lesnar

working his ass off all year, through


all the boos and the cheers).
The biggest surprise? WWEs top
heel Kevin Owens with a selfless
response: The New Day. Those guys
took themselves from being an act
that could hardly get on the Kick-Off
show at one point, and now theyre
one of the biggest things in WWE
and one of the most entertaining
acts we have. Kalisto, meanwhile,
wants a Hall Of Famer to grace the
front: I would love to see Eddie
Guerrero; a great talent and legend.
the new fray
Regardless of the superstar who
gets the cover glory (we expect
Brock Lesnar), the game itself
should feature many new roster
additions thanks to waves of popular
NXT signings and call-ups to Raw.
A near-total overhaul of the
womens division is the best place to

Being drawn in

as well as the Cgi movie, ffXV is


getting a five-part anime series
called brotherhood, which acts
as a prequel to the game. You can
watch episode one right now for
free on YouTube.

The Big10
STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

These guys look like


they dont dilly-dally
shilly-shally about.

Final Fantasy films


Stark surprise
Sean Bean and Aaron Paul front Kingsglaive cast
Ever heard the
one about Jesse
from Breaking Bad
walking into a bar
with Ned Stark and
Cersei Lannister
from Game Of Thrones? It ends with
the punchline, and then they filmed
a new Final Fantasy movie. Except
heres the curious thing: were not
joking. Theyre all
due to star in
Kingsglaive a CGI
movie set to run
alongside the
events of FFXV.
While the game
follows Noctis and
his band of merry
men after they
leave the crown city of Lucis, the film
will concentrate on King Regis (Sean
Bean), who remains in the city as it
comes under attack by the invading
Niflheim empire. As with most things
Final Fantasy, its all about gaining
the power of magical crystals. Nyx
Ulric (Aaron Paul) is the leader of the
Kingsglaive, which are basically fancy
knights, and is tasked with trying to
slow the empires advances. The only

03

start: Charlotte, Sasha Banks


and Becky Lynch emerged from
WrestleMania as three of WWEs
biggest stars as they fought for the
new WWE Womens Championship.
Their inclusion is a must, as is that
of NXT favourites Bayley and Asuka.
Then consider the hiring of AJ
Styles and Apollo Crews, the return
of the Dudley Boyz and Alberto Del
Rio, plus NXT talent such as Shinsuke
Nakamura, Austin Aries and
American Alpha all sure to feature.
And since WWE 2K16s DLC featured
the preceding Hall Of Fame class,
dont bet against new inductees Big
Boss Man, The Godfather, The
Fabulous Freebirds, Jacqueline and
Stan Hansen being added too. Last
years record-breaking roster could
soon look positively tiny
well bring you the first look at wwe
2k17 and its new cover star this summer.

friends the good guys have are also


under occupation from the empire,
including the Oracle Lunafreya Nox
Fleuret (Lena Headey) who is also
Noctis betrothed, and can speak
to the giant god-like Archaens.
It sounds even more complicated
than the plot of Thrones, and those
whove seen previous (mildly
bonkers) films Spirits Within and
Advent Children
cant be blamed
for approaching
this with an air
of even deeper
cynicism. But with
such star power
attached, it
should at least
prove watchable.
Kingsglaive hits Japanese cinemas
in July, but theres no word on a UK
release yet and sadly the actors
wont be reprising their roles for
the game. Expect some mismatched
voices, then, but any additional
slices of that delicious FFXV world
can only be a good thing.

The PLoT
soUnds more
ComPLiCaTed
Than game
of Thrones.

for our extended playtest of the new


final fantasy XV demo, flick to page 32.

011

You need six passwords


to escape. to unlock one,
somebodY has to die

The Big10

(Coin) Flipping out

There really is a 50-50 chance,


says director Kotaro Uchikoshi
of random outcomes for those
keen to 100% ZTD. If youre
really unlucky, you might have to
continuously replay some scenes.

Every scene is fully voiced, so you


can play without reading if you want.

STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

Junpei, Akane, Phi and Sigma all return


from previous Zero Escape games.

meet ps Vitas
next best game
Zero time dilemma is a sight for saw eyes
phi is locked
inside an
incinerator,
sigma is
strapped to
a chair with
a revolver
to his head,
and youre told that pulling the
trigger will release phi before shes
flame-roasted. what do you do?
thats just one conundrum youll face
in new ps Vita narrative adventure
Zero time dilemma, the sequel to
the excellent Virtues last reward.
like the previous games in the
series, Zero time dilemma locks nine
people inside a facility and asks you
to solve puzzles and make choices
to help them escape. and continuing
the trend established in Vlr and its
(sadly non-playstation) prequel nine
hours, nine persons, nine doors,
those choices you make are going
to mean certain characters will die.

04

chance chance revolution


Yet theres a major twist in the
above scenario: chance. the
chamber of that revolver contains

three live rounds and three blanks,


and you dont know which one youll
get. the outcome is completely
random, meaning that the series
famed for its split-path stories
(it took more than 30 hours to see
them all in Virtues last reward),
now has more branches than ever.
the addition of luck isnt the only
major change to the formula. the
nine stars are assigned to one of
three teams, each trapped in a
different ward. to escape, theyll
need to uncover six passwords to
get one, someone must drop dead.
time to die
a memory-wiping serum injected
into the protagonists on a regular
basis means you wont get to follow
these teams fates chronologically.
instead, you pick story fragments
from a floating menu, unravelling the
tale non-linearly and piecing together
the plot as you go think memento
meets saw. its set to challenge the
very top of our ps Vita hall of Fame.
Aksys Games is bringing Zero Time
Dilemma to UK PS Vitas on 28 June.

013

the big shot

eagle-eyed analysis

Guile can walk forwards


while retaining his charged
specials (but he resembles
an arse-dragging dog).

014

SFV Guile comes with


sunglasses already on.
Bad news for fans of
the games best taunt.

Not pictured is his V-Skill:


a floaty yellow landmine,
perfect for controlling
space and wake-up.

Guile be back in
Street Fighter V
Gamings baddest flat-top returns
At last, the USs
most super
soldier (dont
argue) is back in
Street Fighter V.
Guile was one of
the original eight characters in
Street Fighter II, and hes as
American as bald eagles, pepper
spray and putting mac and
cheese on everything. If youre
not familiar with him, Guiles
famous for his unshakeable love
of justice, immaculate hair and
defensive capabilities that make
Fort Knox look like a childs

05

inflatable castle. Jump in on Guile?


Youre getting pwned.
Other contenders are inbound,
too. Balrog, Urien, Ibuki and Juri
are planned for 2016, with six
more characters coming in 2017.
If we dont get Oro, well be
flipping tables with our free arm.
Also finally! a proper rage
quit system will be implemented,
punishing players with high
disconnect rates. (Youre right to
look red-faced, World Combo)
Guile formed (the best) part of
Aprils update for Street Fighter V.

number game
we do the maths

$330m

5-5
Amount The Division generated on
release fastest-selling new IP ever.

Aggregate FIFA Interactive World Cup


result, won by Denmark (away goals).

100+
Countries expected to be represented
at this years E3 trade show.

38.3
The beefy file size, in gigabytes,
of baseball sim MLB The Show.

10,000,000
Number of copies of Final Fantasy XV
that Square Enix expect to sell.

The flash kicks still deadly,


while Guiles V-Trigger
chucks out a flurry of
Sonic Booms.

30/09
The aforementioned, much-desired
Final Fantasy XV releases on this date.

335
New max Light level in Destiny after
the spring update.

Best buddy Nash sacrificed


himself to save Guile,
so we cant wait for
them to be reunited.

$8.00
How much a Rocket League stressball
costs from the official Psyonix store.

015

If ps4 Croatia can win it,


surely real life england can
triumph this summer, right?

016

Croatia conquer
Euro 2016
Cacics lads crowned champs as we recreate the Euros in PES
What a year Slaven
Bilic is having. First
he guides West
Ham to their best
Premier League
finish in more than
a decade. And then his virtual
countrymen only go and lift the
silverware at the Euros in France
well, in PES 2016s
free DLC update,
at least.
Some
bookmakers may
have them pegged
as a 25/1 shot
for this summers
Gallic soccer
extravaganza, but such trivial
numbers mean little to Mario
Mandukic and his buddies, who
positively shine as we recreate Euro
2016 in Konamis kickabout. God,
it seems, is a Croatia fan.

06

Upon firing up the recently added


tournament, we immediately select
Roys boys, mostly to make the poor
Scotsman writing this piece cry salty
tartan tears [not that former OPM
news ed Meiks is the bitter type
*cough*]. As PES 2016 automatically
sorts all 24 sides into their officially
drawn groups, setup is a breeze,
and its not long
before this young
England outfit
are fit and firing
into action.
Well, thats as
soon as we get a
pesky 2-1 loss to
Russia out of the
way. Despite Jamie Vardy wasting no
time cashing in his goal tokens with
a deftly placed header, the Leicester
hitmans efforts are in vain after
second half goals from Dzagoev
and Dzyuba give the Ruskies three

Ireland
make the spIrIt
of roy keanes
hobo beard
very proud.

team talk
englands default
lineup might be
outdated Gibbs
at left-back?! but
the strikers did the
business. roys boys
were sent packing
from the last 16,
but the lads up top
werent to blame.
between them, vardy
and kane scored
seven in three starts.
sorry, sturridge. also,
I totally started Jonjo
shelvey. blame me.
dave meikleham

former news editor, opm

precious points. Chin up, Roy


theres a Battle of Britain to play!
Yes, Group Bs most eye-catching
tie is up next, with England nabbing
bragging rights over Wales in the
home nations derby, thanks to a
thrilling 4-3 win courtesy of braces
by Kane and Vardy. Get benched,
Wayne. Indeed, Rooney continues
to pluck splinters from his ample
derrire in a 0-0 snore draw with
Slovakia, as England finish third
in the group. Fortunately, thanks
to that oh-so-forgiving 24-team
format, Roys boys manage to
scrape through regardless. Phew.
Brit your teeth
With France, Germany, Spain, Italy
and Portugal all topping the other
groups, the last 16 is a more
daunting prospect than asking Luis
Suarez to rub suntan lotion on your
neck with his teeth.

zlat traCk BullY

last time opm recreated


the euros, in 2012, Zlatan
Ibrahimovic was the Golden
boot winner. he did it again
this time, outshooting
everyone with six goals.

The Big10
STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

info patches
update your brain

pes euro licensing is patchy,


but at least it gets the pot right.

despite the latter only having 39%


possession during their 3-1 win.
The current World Cup holders
arent the only goliath to crumble in
the quarters. The Swiss sink Spain
2-1, with that man Shaqiri netting
the winner. All these upsets lead to a
distinctly fresh looking set of semis,
as Sweden meet Switzerland and
Croatia battle Ireland. That not-sofab four is then quickly cut to two,
the Swiss sending the Swedes
packing 3-0 before Croatia crumple
Irish hearts by beating Martin
ONeills side 4-1 on pens.

Still, the big boys dont have it


entirely their own way, with an
unbeaten, Shaqiri-inspired
Switzerland impressing in Group A
bask in that reflected glory Stoke.
Elsewhere, Ireland have made the
spirit of Roy Keanes hobo beard
proud in Group E, edging over the
line in their final fixture with a
resounding 3-0 win over the Italians
thanks to a Jonathan Walters
hat-trick. Truly, this tourney belongs
to Potters fans everywhere.
Despite the seemingly strong
knock-out lineup, however, the last
16 springs some juicy shocks. Italy
fall to Croatia, Ireland end the hosts
dream in a ludicrously dominant 2-0
display over France, while England
are soundly beaten 3-1 by Germany.
That last ones a total surprise,
right? Kindly old Roy can at least
take comfort when the Germans
crash out to Croatia in the quarters,

Final Fever
Ladies and germs, we give you the
Euro 2016 final: Switzerland versus
Croatia. Hooray for the least
glamorous decider ever (weve
blotted 2004 from our brains).
Despite the Swiss leading twice
and the Shaq attack laying on a
cracking assist, two late goals by
Marcelo Brozovic ultimately win it for
the Croats. While those parties rage
on in the streets of Zagreb, why not
slap all of your savings on the real
Croatia winning this summers
Euros? Cmon, Uncle OPM would
never steer you wrong

Can Yuz Believe it?


youll be wallowing in the filth of Japans
underground come 2017, with prequel yakuza
0 hitting european consoles. While youll still
be able to take control of main protagonist
kazuma, for the first time in the main series,
youll also slip into the luxurious, unhinged
shoes of mad dog Goro majima.
017

Move over, Mozart


While Classic fm isnt our usual go-to station,
were happy to see that some of our favourite
gaming themes have made it into its hall of
fame. the delightful everybodys Gone to
the rapture soundtrack by Jessica Curry
ascends to #268, while shenmue is the
highest new entry at #144.

for our definitive verdict on pes take


on euro 2016, nutmeg your way to p84.

Hoops, Here it is

despite being hacked to bits,


old arry kane had a fine tourney.

We have carball, but now its time for rocket


league to add basketball into the mix. hoops
adds a new arena and mode to the multiplayer
classic, in which the goal is a giant hoop
rather than a net. We suspect itll be worth
putting in the hours practising flying to get
some slam (on the brakes) dunks.

Mech it a double:
Titanfall is back

Slaughterbots respawn for PS4 debut


PS4 has utterly
rocked this
generation. So
much so that
weve barely ever
looked over the
fence to enviously glance at what
might be growing in the garden
of green. A rare exception
came in 2014, with Respawn
Entertainments Titanfall, a frenetic
multiplayer blaster
that focused on
velvety smooth
parkour. That,
and giant sodding
mechs. The
sequels been
confirmed as
PS4-bound for a
while, but a new
teaser trailer means we now have
a vague idea of what to expect.
Shock horror Titanfall 2
focuses on great big murder bots.
This time, though, theyre packing
swords. The ever-so-brief video
shows an exotic jungle crawling
with mysterious alien beasties
a big departure from the war-torn
cities of the first game before
cutting to a crashed drop pod and
a mech wielding one hell of a blade.

07

The presence of such a prominent,


pointy object suggests robot
combat now focuses more on
melee attacks than the gun-based
scuffles of the original.
dont be a hero
Rumours also point to Titanfall
2 featuring a beefier, more
narrative-led single-player
component, something the trailer
backs up. The
problem with being
a hero is you have
to be willing to
die for what you
believe in, growls
a miffed South
African narrator.
If I were you
I wouldnt try so
hard. Yup, it certainly sounds
like there will be more plot (and
a clearer bad guy) to sink your
chompers into between all the
mech-on-mech destruction. With
an official unveiling set for the EA
Play event during next months
E3, these robots wont be in
disguise much longer.

ThE muRdER
boTS ARE bAck,
And noW ThEYRE
PAckIng gIAnT
SWoRdS.

drop pods look like


theyre back to deliver
AI and human fighters
to the battlefield.

A mcFarlane Toys tie-in press release


suggests Titanfall 2 is out this winter.

the rumour machine


our sources understand

Norwegian midfielder
Andrine Stolsmo
Hegerbergs #fifa17
Instagram post suggests
Norways national womens
side is getting the call-up
from EA next season.

Is Skyrim PS4-bound?
A supposedly leaked
photo shows it in
the PS Now store.
God Of War PS4 A Polish gaming
website suggests
hints abound,
The Witcher
as one
3s Blood And
insider
Wine DLC
teases
may release
a Nordic
on 7 June.
theme.

Mirrors Edge
Remastered?
Hopefully that
now-removed
screenshot of
an Amazon UK
listing was legit.

One MOre encOre

Are traditional peripherals dead?


Ranyard says no: One thing that
VR lacks is tactile feedback you
do get that with peripherals.
Dont smash those placcy Guitar
axes just yet, then.

PlayStation
voices
the month in
mouthing off
Former SingStar
boss Raynard is a
big convert to PS
VRs hymn sheet.

How Wonderbook
inspired PS VR
Ex-Sony director talks techs surprising origins
Excited about
PlayStation VR?
Course you are.
Yet you may be
surprised to learn
that its origins,
at least in part, stem from an
interactive PS3 tome brought to life
with flicks of the Move controller.
In terms of stepping stones, the
tracking required for Wonderbook
is not that different from tracking
a VR headset, reveals Dr Dave

08

Whoda thunk this would be the inspiration


behind PS VR? Dr Dave, thats who. Genius.

Ranyard, former Sony London


director and Wonderbooks
executive producer. We used Move
for dancing games, too. Put all
those things together cameras,
microphones, Move controllers
and tracking thats VR.
And its not just Book Of Spells.
Ranyard explains how older phases
of tech all play their part in the
VR future: One of the things I
often get asked about is whether
VR is going to be another thing
thatll fizzle out, like 3D TV. I think
well look back and see all these
technologies as stepping stones,
because I think VR is a fundamental
promise thats really exciting.
Having left Sony after 17 years
in January, Ranyard has plans for
what he wants to do next, but none
of our spells could loosen his lips on
exactly what. If I told you, Id have
to kill you!
What VR game are you desperate to
immerse yourself in? Tweet @OPM_UK.

Mass Effect
was like my
teens. Didnt
realise you
could have sex
with the other
characters.
Sick selfburn,
Hello
Games
Sean
Murray.
Im the hand
behind all of
Brians writing. I
have the scrawl
of a 13-year-old
child. Firewatch
designer Olly
Moss reveals a
scribbly secret.

Guile looks
like hed get
his ass beat by
Nash. LMAO.
Street Fightin
pro ricki
Ortiz
doesnt
fear the
Sonic
Boom.

019

instant
opinion

Check out the Lara and


Drake cake figurines.
Hang on, were getting
an idea for a game

strong vs
wrong

Evolving Door

A happy end for the


team at Evolution, who
are being taken on by
Codemasters. The Dirt
Rally and Driveclub devs
together? Get revvy
for some top racing.

can you fEar it?

HEllbounD
020

Dooms open Beta


had us rushing
through levels
while sucking super
shotgun bullets.
Bring on 13 May.

Zan-griEf

Alexs arrival is great


news, but Street
Fighter Vs April update
still stings. Theres
nothing wrong
with Challenge
mode, but its still
no substitute for
an arcade mode.

Donut Pass go

Uncharted 4 has its


first confirmed casualty
in Donut Drake. While
we understand the
reasons behind his
untimely passing
probably heart disease
well still miss him.

Crash (Bandicoot)
the wedding
Game on! PlayStation fans tie the knot, Sony-style
Other than Vanilla
Coke and dreams
of helping to shave
Nathan Drakes
perfect jawline
overshare?
nothing makes Team OPM happier
than its readers. Were therefore
delighted to report that longtime
PlayStation fans Alex Duhig and
Laura Varley who met through our
Facebook group have tied the knot.
Best of all, they did so via a
PlayStation-themed wedding.
The happy
couples story
began eight years
ago, when they
started gaming
together after
meeting through

09

iT wAS A
TribuTe TO wHAT
gAMing HAS
DOne fOr uS.

out of PrimE

Far Cry Primal Survivor


mode sounds great,
making the game more
like a prehistoric sim
than simply a Far Cry
re-skin. So why is it
coming out so late?

the Rocket Minions community. (Our


own Iain Mr Trophy Wilson was also
a member.) While Unreal Tournament
3 and Metal Gear Online were faves,
Laura says they bonded over Resi 5
co-op. We loved that game and kept
playing until we earned the platinum
together! From there, the
relationship levelled-up, and Alex
proposed. I honestly thought he
was just being odd, says Laura.
Then I saw he was on one knee!
They knew there could only be
one theme for the big day in West
Sussex. We wanted
something that
screamed us,
and to pay tribute
to all gaming has
done for us. It was
nice to show our
families that
videogames can be so much more
than just entertainment.
Better yet, when Sony heard
about the festivities, it kindly supplied
the ultimate wedding present: two
PS4 consoles, two extra controllers
and six games. As Laura says, they
can now go back to their early days.
We get to play online-only games
together, which is awesome!

As wedding presents go, youre


unlikely to top this PlayStation haul.

Huge congratulations to Alex and


Laura from everyone at OPM Towers.

Laura Brown Photography

Fear Effect is such a


cult game that the FBI
is probably monitoring
it. Fortunately, its
Kickstarting a revival,
so youll be able to drink
its Kool-Aid once more.

The Big10

Gimme Shelter

Doom pub Bethesda is hosting its


own E3 press conference again
this year. Considering 2015s
bombshells of Fallout 4 and
Dishonored 2, were buzzing to
see whats up its power armour.

STorieS everyoneS Talking aBouT

just one more question


10
the team debate this months burning issue
What would be your dream reveal
at this Junes e3 mega-show?

021

Ben Tyrer
Staff Writer

andrew wesTBrook
production editor

Ben wilson
acting editor

Jen simpkins
Staff Writer

ps4.5 is on my
Christmas
Wishlist. all i need
noW is for it to
beCome a reality.

i dream of KoJ
roCKing the stage
With a little taste
of Whats to Come.

i really hope
Cliff bleszinsKis
right about
bulletstorm 2.

all i Want is for


taKe-tWo to bring
the shoCK faCtor.

Weve had the messy


divorce. and weve had
the dastardly ex making
petty public digs while
doing a runner with the
kids (well, somebodys got
to feed the snake). but
now its time for a new
beginning. yep, the e3 of
my dreams has the one
and only hideo Kojima
rocking the la stage,
perhaps with a hot new
partner on his arm
a hot new partner
answering to the name
guillermo del toro, obvs.
by e3 time, the mgs
creator wouldve had
over half a year with his
newly independent studio.
and itll be almost as long
since news broke that
hes working on a sony
console exclusive. time
for a taster? hells yeah. n

in november, the gears


of War creator (dont
boo, hes doing other
stuff now) claimed a
bunch of the shooters
devs bought the
abandoned ip and are
working on a sequel. ive
since spent every evening
praying this rumour is
real, despite being as
religious as nesquik.
bulletstorm was ps3s
punchiest shooter, with
kaleidoscopic levels that
blended laugh-out-loud
kills with an old-school
points-per-death dynamic
(rear entry? 50 big
ones!). it would translate
beautifully to ps4. plus its
decent story was left on
a massive cliffhanger.
rhyming memo to
Cliffybs pals: please make
it be, at this years e3. n

no, we still dont know


if ps4.5 (or ps4K?) is
definitely happening.
but i really, really want
it to. sony has a habit
of releasing slimline
versions of its fun boxes
throughout the console
cycle and, with both
playstation Vr and
4K heading for the
mainstream, the idea of
a slightly more powerful
console, catering to those
taking the leap, makes a
whole lot of sense. With it
being easier than ever to
transfer saves between
machines, upgrading
should also be hasslefree. okay, i also like
getting new consoles
from santa this would
scratch that entitlement
itch oh-so-well. n

a new bioshock? as a
superfan, the thought
leaves me as torn as a
wormhole in time and
space. on the one hand,
the trilogy is perfection,
as is. infinite tied the
narratives of all three
games together in one
big, mind-blowing bow. on
the other hand bioshock
4. if publisher take-two
announced a return to
the plasmid-slinging,
story-driven shooting,
id be on the convention
centre floor in an
insta-puddle of energy
drinks, grateful tears
and maybe some excited
widdle. its a pipe-dream,
perhaps, but more info
on bioshock creator Ken
levines new small-scale,
open-world fps might
otherwise satiate the
splicer in me. n

rePlies
F facebook.com/OfficialPlayStationMagazine t @OPM_UK W gamesradar.com/opm e opm@futurenet.com

Whole Lara love

024

Why is there such a delay


to the releaseof Rise Of
The Tomb Raider on PS4?
I feel it gets a bit of a raw
deal from you guys. I love
OPM and agree mostly
with your reviews and
opinions, but you are preoccupied with your love
affair with Uncharted.And
whilst theyare all damn
fine games, I think the
last Tomb Raider release
was just as good, if not
better, and doesnt get
anywhere near the credit
it deserves.
John allen via email

Rise isnt expected


to hit PS4 until about
november due to an
exclusivity deal, though

pre-orders are now


available expect plenty
of coverage in OPM as
that time draws nearer.

Dark fears

Am I the only one worried


about the depiction of
mental illness as part
of Darkest Dungeon?
It would be easy for the
depictions of the various
forms of illness to fall
into parody, re-enforcing
standard tropes about
the mentally ill.
Roger Morris via email

tS: In Darkest Dungeon,


weve tried hard to
emphasise that it is not
a game about mental
illness. Instead, its
a game about human
response to stress.
the afflictions are
temporary conditions
that reflect how that
character responds to
a condition of extremely
high stress brought on
by environmental stimuli.
Often these are negative
responses (Irrationality,
Selfishness) but
sometimes they are
quite positive (e.g.
Powerful, courageous
etc.). the activities in
turn are themed around

yOURE PRE-OCCUPIED WITh


UNChARTED. ThE LAST TOMB
RAIDER RELEASE WAS JUST
AS GOOD, IF NOT BETTER.

Star letter Block star

Id just like to share a little life story. It was 1993 when


my six-year-old life became complete my dad took
me to see Jurassic Park. Twenty-three years later
(wow!), I relived that excitement as I loaded up Lego
Jurassic World. My VHS may have worn out years ago,
but I still know every word and beamed as little Lego
actors re-enacted my favourite film. Now, at 1am on
a Sunday, having dedicated 33 hours to gathering 18
BILLION virtual Lego studs, Ive scooped the platinum.
Im not usually a trophy hunter, but it was for the
legacy of John Hammond. Keep up the good work OPM.
hegx (grown-up name Helen culver) via email

an impressive achievement, Helen, and were sure


the Doc would approve. to reward your dino levels
of dedication, have a years free OPM subscription.

ways to reduce stress,


and thereby return the
hero to their respective
base-line. We have
sought to avoid tackling
actual mental illness,
which we interpret
as more permanent
conditions that are not
related to conditions
of high stress. a good
example is that the
Hopeless affliction is
not at all supposed to be
interpreted as clinical
depression, but rather
a temporary onslaught
of despair brought on
by dire circumstances.

can I get a Rt?


Tweet gold (and one troll) from
this months @OPM_UK timeline

@jennifelizabart
Literally anything I see
on mirrors edge catalyst
makes me cry. Ive waited
for SO LONG.
@AdamSessler
I cannot overstate the
pleasure of waking up and
having a new Ratchet and
Clank game ready to play.
@SirLarr
Just Superd some guy
in Street Fighter V so
hard that it blew the
PS4 offline.
@C3NTAURI0N
Thanks for the code
in the last issue. Im
now addicted to world
of tanks.

troll of the month

#122 Uncharted
special, Ps Vr, Hitman,
The Division, Dirt rally.

thats a serious
question worthy of
a serious response,
Roger, so we forwarded
it to the man best
qualified to provide a
proper answer tyler
Sigman, co-president
of Darkest Dungeon
developer Red Hook
Studios. Heres what
he had to say

@GreatWallofChin
#Firewatch was fantastic!
The type of storytelling I
love. And how about that
voice talent? Perfect.
@coolderik
FFXV demo question: is
magic consumable? We
know how swimmingly
that turned out in FFVIII.
@chalm3rs_305
Disappointed to find issue
122 being an Uncharted
mag instead of Playstation.
Getting Repetitive.

@JamesEarnshaw
Day was made easier by
TWO @OPM_UK podcasts!
Its the new hotness with
lots of banter.
@Wario64
Now that Shenmue 3
actually exists, I need a
new game to joke about
being at E3.
@SusanArendt
And thats my PS VR preordered. I wasnt going
to, but...I mean...Rez.

best comments from facebook.com/officialplaystationmagazine

Hell Yessss! But please dont concentrate


on online play or DlC. Just make an epic
and amazing game like the first one.

ive been in love with


this game since it
first came up on Ps2.

Aaran Metcalfe hopes the last of us 2 rumours are true.

Alvin Flores on ratchet & clank.

ReaDeRS MOSt WanteD


1

Which games are bleeping loudest on your radar?

no Mans Sky

In your first Most Wanted poll in


the post-Uncharted 4 world, its
perhaps unsurprising that hello
Games procedurally generated
space behemoth won the vote by
a landslide. Its now less than two
months until the interplanetary
explorer lands, so lets just
hope it really is the giant
leap for gaming that
were all expecting.

hands up whos missing


David Cage? Some of you
certainly are, judging by
the shock debut entry
of Quantic Dreams Kara
demo-inspired android
saga. There have been
no new details since last
Octobers Paris Games
Week trailer reveal
but yes, it does look cool.

FORMat Ps4
eta 24 JUN

FORMat Ps4
eta 2017

vOte
nOW!

Horizon
Zero Dawn

Creeping up the table


to its highest position
yet, details on the lushlooking PlayStationexclusive remain
frustratingly scant.
Fingers crossed E3 will
deliver an update on
Guerrillas futuristic
open-world adventure.

025

Tell us the five games


you cant wait to play at
opm@futurenet.com

FORMat Ps4
eta 2016

Mass effect
andromeda

News of its release


being delayed no doubt
helped knock Biowares
spacefaring adventure
down two places in your
chart, but theres still no
shortage of fans intrigued
about what a post-Shep
universe could deliver.

Final Fantasy xv

Back in your Most Wanted after a four-month


break, something tells us the RPG adventures
of Noctis could become a regular podium fixture
in the months ahead. head to p32 to read about
our extended playtest of the latest demo.

FORMat Ps4
eta 30 seP

exIt
POll

Our Facebook
fans answer a
final question

Detroit:
Become Human

FORMat Ps4
eta Q1 2017

Where or when
would you like
the next Call Of
Duty to be set?

12% Have a leap


back in history
within their sights,
ideally to the
American Civil War.
24% Crave
a more drastic
switch, such as
to Trump Tower,
a monsters belly,
the Nostromo or a
white Transit van.

8% Want the

40%

Wish the series


would hit rewind
and return to its
WW2 roots.

sun on their backs


with some iraqi
shooty action.

8% Hope to show
Jong-un that
hes a wrong un,
in North Korea.

8% Think the

Vietnam War is a
conflict ripe for
the current-gen
treatment.

next
MOntH

Gamings biggest
show storms into
los Angeles in
June, so we want
to know: what are
you most excited
to see at e3?

OpiniOn

Jen Simpkins

Get lost, mini-maps.


well-desiGned videoGame
environments should lead
the way, and let us keep
the fizz of discovery.
Talk to the hand, HUD. Immersive gaming is off-grid

026

et me level with you: Im


a bit dizzy. I have no sense
of direction, and could get
lost in a neon-lit, brailleencrusted, circular corridor.
Youd think Id be grateful
for mini-maps, right? Wrong. Im
sick of the things. Theyre either
a bewildering muddle of markers
(looking at you, Final Fantasy XIV)
or bland, utilitarian tools that
distract from my experience.
Star Wars Battlefronts mini-map
is as functional and sterile as a Cillit
Banged Stormtrooper. It does its job
admirably, but keeping a constant eye
on those ominous, uninspired red
sectors dilutes the magic of really
feeling like youre actually in Star
Wars. Destiny, despite excellent map
design, is the same (though Ghosts are
a decent way of integrating accessing
objectives into the world). And its not
just shooters dragging us
around by the hand.
Nothing shatters the
RPG illusion like following
mini-map paths to
objectives like a good
little puppy, stepping over
chances to organically
discover things. Seeing a
breathtaking landmark
for the first time via
a marker on that
odious little circle?
Devastating.
Yes, you can
often turn
mini-maps off:
a welcome option
in exploration-rich
games such as The
Witcher 3, but its no real

WRITER bIo
Jen Simpkins opted out of GCSE Geography,
and thought London was smack-dab in the
centre of the UK until she was 14. She still
feels a terrifying stab of panic when she
loses sight of her mum in Tesco. Whos her
fave band? One Direction, obvs.

solution. Some direction in massive,


interconnected worlds is essential.
Enter Saints Row: The Third (through
the wall with an octopus cannon,
probably). Dotted paths be damned:
markers were integrated into the
environment. The city felt
recognisable; certain gang vehicles
indicated different turf; arrows lit
up the roads of Steelport as you
drove. The open-world title let
you take in and navigate the
neon madness instead of
keeping you surgically
attached to the mini-map.
But there was still a
mini-map, wasnt there?
And its too easy to fall
back on the coquettish,
miniature mission icons
giving you that Come
hither wink. If we
want well-designed

environments, to feel that addictive


fizz of discovery in videogames,
weve got to go cold turkey. No HUD.
No mini-maps. Nothing.
Up for it? Then the rarest, frostiest
bird youll find right now is Jonathan
Blows maze-based mind-boggler,
The Witness. Its ironic and utterly
brilliant that in a game about
labyrinths, Ive not felt lost once.
Its the lack of anything resembling
a HUD that makes unpicking the
island so absorbing. I know exactly
where to go and what to do, if I just
pay attention to my surroundings.

JENNIFER SAUNTERS

From the get-go, I learn that following


the islands many wires leads to panels
to solve. Once I complete enough,
lasers indicate a far-off goal, in both
a geographical and gameplay-related
sense. And when Im wandering
through the island looking for more,
clearly colour-delineated regions help
me navigate easily without shoving a
floating YOU ARE HERE prompt in
my face. I can focus.
A mini-map would cause me to be
hasty, linear and overlook secrets.
Thats why I was bricking it about
upcoming indie space exploration sim,
No Mans Sky: it was set to include a
mini-map. Fortunately, a recent trip to
Hello Games studio revealed it had
been replaced by more subtle cues and
markers laid over the environment,
toggled by pressing r. Having the
navigation skills of a mentally
deficient Roomba, Ill still need those
little prods in the right direction.
But if future games dont similarly
recalibrate their approach to minimaps, Ill direct them to the bin.

OpiniOn

Ben Tyrer

Tom Sykes

taminG a sabretoothed tiGer with a wavy


hand is ridiculous, so why
not have fun with it?

theres a vast swathe


of Games for which
finished has become
a meaninGless term.

Far Cry Primal has all the ingredients for


a comedy, but gets the recipe wrong

Epics Paragon is a good start, but PS4


sorely needs an Early Access system

alfway through Far


Cry Primal, you meet
Urki The Thinker,
a caveman with one
purpose to push Homo
sapiens into the future,
through methods such as
mastering the power of
human flight. His first
experiment sees him taking
two feathers, jumping off a
cliff and plummeting into
a stack of hay. Still, hes the
only character who seems
to know that Primal should
be a comedy.
Lets look at the evidence.
Youre a beastmaster with
a tame honey badger that
attacks on command; another
Ubi game yes, the one
with the stabbin and jumpin
is overtly and repeatedly
referenced; plus Urkis accent
is well, not of its time.
Yet Primal takes itself far too
seriously, mixing intentional
laughs with a straight story
about fighting a cannibalistic
tribe. Its hard to know what
to feel when you find a
mangled, half-eaten body
next to the cavemen youve
murdered with an owl.

DISTANT FARCE

It really doesnt need its


po-face. Theres nothing to
get emotionally invested

in. The cast and story is


dull its certainly making
no attempt to mix up the
narrative structure, with every
major plot beat taken from an
older Far Cry. But this lack of
surprise could still work if it
pointed out the flaws in its
structure, like a much hairier
Deadpool. Sacrificing the
seriousness certainly wouldnt
have any impact on the
gameplay every addition
and tweak that Primal makes
would work just as well if
it played itself for laughs.
Taming a sabre-toothed tiger
with nothing but a bit of meat
and a wavy hand is ridiculous,
so why not have fun with it?
After all, the series has
form. Blood Dragon takes a
gloriously silly premise, rams
it full of even sillier jokes and
gets a spirited Michael Biehn
to add some clout to the
one-liners. It knows its
stupid, but it gives (whats
become) the standard Far Cry
formula a different tone.
The endless recycling
of missions, outposts and
takedowns is made bearable
by the punchlines. Primal is
much closer to this level of
parody than it wants to
admit, but it never commits
to seeing the funny side,
leaving us with a stony face.

heres a certain type


of game thats
curiously absent from
PlayStation. No, not
truck simulators though
thats a sore point, too but
survival games such as DayZ
and The Long Dark. These
games can be brilliant.
Broken and unbalanced, yes.
But brilliant with it. Every
other week theres some
amazing new YouTube video
of Rust the PCs premier
naked caveman theft and
murder sim and, frankly,
I want in on the action.
Something like the
Xbox One Game Preview
programme would do just fine,
thanks a tailored selection
of in-development titles, the
wheat having already been
thoroughly separated from the
chaff by folks buying these
unfinished games on Steam.
They can find the gems among
the muck games such as
Subnautica, Slime Rancher,
and Secrets Of Grindea and
we can enjoy them just that
little bit later, though not late
enough for them to become
dated, irrelevant and tame.
Theres something magical
about playing an unfinished
game, one that hasnt yet
settled into its final form. You
can see the walls taking shape,

the world evolving into


something greater before your
eyes. Not all games benefit
from being in Early Access,
but theres a real Wild West
feeling about survival titles,
crafting games and roguelikes.
Playing them is like stepping
out into uncharted territory,
territory that may be very
different less interesting
and more nailed down
once the unwashed masses
get their hands on version 1.0.

AlphA pApA

Theres something to be
said, of course, for waiting
for games to be labelled as
finished before throwing cash
at them. Theyre more likely
to work, for a start nobody
likes shelling out for a game
that runs like a bag of rotting
offal. But theres a vast swathe
of games for which finished
has become a meaningless
term. Minecraft may never
be finished, in the traditional
sense, and I fear weve already
missed out on DayZs heyday,
which kicked off the whole
survival thing years ago.
The PC can keep the dodgy
DayZ and Minecraft clones,
but if we could just get Ark:
Survival Evolved, Rust, GRIP
and Scrap Mechanic before
too long, Ill be a happy man.

WRITER bIo

WRITER bIo

Far Cry 3 remains one of Ben Tyrers favourite games, believing the definition
of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a
different result. He only has himself to blame for sticking with the series.

Tom Sykes has been gaming since the Amstrad, and hes still waiting for that
gritty reboot of Animal, Vegetable, Mineral. A big RPG fan, hes already bagsied
the Vagrant Story 2 review Square Enix just has to make it now. Hint hint.

027

cancellation

Cancellation
The binned games that died in teasing,
tantalising, sometimes super-sad style
1

028

WWE BraWl

Street Fighter meets Super


Smash Bros if Ryu and
Mario had both been AAed
through tables. That was
the basic premise for this
bicep-heavy grappler. A
platformer/beat-em-up
hybrid, it centred around
Cena and co. trying to stop
Vince McMahons schemes.
Despite its quirky art style,
Brawl was canned in 2012,
not long before publisher
THQ went under.
2

Killing Day

Or The One With The Really


Sexy Marble Textures.
Another failed child of
(whisper it) E3 05, this
Ubi shooter rocked sultry
destructible scenery. Very
little was ever mentioned of
K-Day after this and, in the
fullness of time, it looks like
it was merely a briefly
impressive slice of target
footage to hype folk for PS3.
3

Faith anD a .45

A Bonnie And Clyde-inspired


co-op shooter, set during the
Great Depression, starring
outlaw lovers Luke and Ruby.
It was slated for PS3, but
when dev Deadline Games
episodic Watchmen series
tanked, the duo were taken
out back. And here we were
thinking Bonnie And Clyde
had a happy ending.

harKEr

Bloody vampires. They come


here, they take our jobs,
suck our arteries dry, then
dont even have the decency
to nail down a release date.
Harker was a vamp-hunter
dreamt up by The Collective,
a studio that cut its fangs on
PS2s Buffy titles. Luckily for
Drac, Harker was cancelled
after The Collective merged
with Shiny Entertainment.
5

100 BullEts

Screw ammo. Want to deal a


game a real deathblow? Just
have its publisher go belly
up. PS2s take on Brian
Azzarellos comic may have
sported an inventive
shooting system built around
a rage meter and using
hostages as shields, but it
couldnt survive the financial
woes that saw Acclaim die
back in 2004.
6

this is VEgas

This debauched PS3 open


world was set to let you
build an empire not through
gambling, but by fighting
and partying, naturally. Once
owned by Midway, it was sold
to Warner Bros in 09, then
canned due to spiralling
losses that saw both
publishers lose a combined
$50m. Whatever happened
in this Sin City sandbox,
itll have to stay there.

star Wars 1313

God, this one still hurts more


than watching a night of Jar
Jar-funded amateur theatre.
Influenced by Uncharted and
running on Unreal Engine 3,
1313 looked like it could be
the Star Wars game. Then
LucasArts got bought by
Disney and the latter decided
it would rather focus on
making mobile games.
Sith truly does happen.
8

thE gEtaWay 3

Are you mugging me off,


sunshine? After wowing
the world with its Piccadilly
Circus demo at 2005s
E3 a showing meant to
highlight PS3s potential
power The Getaway 3 went
into hiding. SCE London later
confirmed it had shelved
the game to work on EyePet,
and the Cockney caper
was ditched for good when
Shuhei Yoshida took over
at worldwide studios.
9

Eight Days

Poor SCE London. First The


Getaway 3 died, then Eight
Days went the same way.
Another darling of E3 2005,
this actioner impressed
with a tech demo set at
a gorgeous petrol station,
and promises of a map that
spanned eight states. It was
pulled in 2008, with Yoshida
citing its lack of online play.

Honourable mentions
turok 2

This follow-up to Disneys


2008 dino reboot was
quickly ditched, despite
some alluring T-rex footage.

agent

It was never officially cancelled,


but Rockstars 70s spy thriller
looks doomed after spending
nine years deep undercover.

star Wars Battlefront 3


Before DICE became at-one
with the Force, LucasArts
developed a sequel that
very nearly got finished.

Did we miss your favourite canned game? Got an In The Mood For idea? Show and tell at twitter.com/opm_uk.

6
029

surely you should be sending Me a


Prize for coMPleTing ThaT challenge.

More words
Than i can handle.
Youve been cheating on Your
vita with an older model.
ThaTs a real healTh and safeTy siTuaTion.

iM noT saT here in oPM


Towers in a croP ToP.
for once.
the uncharted Forecast
is a great pun.
everyThing was off
for The hoff.

the
opm
podcast
get it from iTunes or at opmpodcast.wordpress.com today

40 mirrors
edge
catalyst
faiths back on the run,
and shes got a new
open world to explore

031

contents
final fantasy XV 32 | lego star wars: the force awakens 36 | sniper elite 4 38
furi 42 | sherlock holmes: the deVils daughter 43 | hyper light drifter 44
god eater 2: rage Burst / resurrection 45 | loVely planet 46 | mekazoo 46

Preview
That rain sure looks realistic,
but we look forward to the
day when videogame hair
looks as soggy as ours.

032

Preview

craShing into
the huge iron
giant iS a SPecial
kind of joy.
Format PS4 / eta 30 SePtember
pub Square enix / deV Square enix

Final
Fantasy XV

After the hype, the hands-on


and its everything you ever dreamed
Break out the victory fanfare.
Its finally, definitely, happening.
Final Fantasy XV is coming out
this year and weve been handson with the longed-for demo to
glean every scrap of info possible.
Its short, at roughly 15-20 minutes long, but
there are loads of hints at what to expect from the
upcoming game if you only know where to look.
Unlike the Duscae demo which came free with
Final Fantasy: Type-0 last year, and follows a full
party of four as well as one large area to run around
in this Platinum demo strings together several
smaller sections. It also follows a young version
of hero Noctis as hes led by cuddly fox-god-thing
Carbuncle through a surreal dreamscape that gives an
incredible flavour of what to expect from XV, even
though it wont appear in the finished adventure.

sword prey

If youve never played a Final Fantasy title before,


or are a lapsed fan, the collectible crystals and
squeaky hammer found within might be offputting.
But once youve got your head around the Alice In
Wonderland vibe, youre treated to a sneak peek
at the menacing face of a 100-foot muscled titan,
some hands-on time with the new fighting system,
and glimpses of just how huge this open-world take
on Final Fantasy will be.

033

Preview
left Lunafreya might be
FFXvs heroine, but she
wont be joining the party.
its just you and the boys.
right its all about
brotherhood your squad
are also your best friends.
Theyve got your back.

Summon ifrit hasnt been


seen yet, but these burnt
trees and fiery crystals
suggest hes nearby.

world tour

Its not all monsters and backstabbing, theres also some sightseeing to do

Okay, so its not exactly good


news to see enemy airships
cruising overhead, but
Niflheim tech is as worthy of awe
as it is of fear.

Smelly Chocobos arent


always befitting of a prince.
Thankfully, there are plenty
of luxury yachts around to help
you take in that view.

You get to roam around a


small area of Altissia in the
demo. As well as waterways
inspired by venice, its also home
to the gigantic Leviathan.

To get that real city


experience, you need to speak
to the locals. who knows,
maybe youll even squeeze a few
quests out of them.

Preview
The most notable change since the Duscae demo
is the combat. Its far simpler now, with individual
weapons and spells mapped to the D-pad rather
than tangled together and tied to each blade. Its now
incredibly easy to string together combos open up
with a few swings of a light sword before switching
to a two-handed beast to finish the job. All of your
attacks are tied to e, which makes it quick to learn,
but it does take an oddly long time to master. It feels
like a weird mix of Kingdom Hearts and Assassins
Creed when you switch your tools up, but it works.

warp speed

above Just like us Brits, Noctis and friends love little more than chatting
about the weather. So, that was summer, eh? How about this rain?

you Shrink to the


Size of a mouSe and
have to navigate a
huge Stately room
itS Surreal.

As well as conjuring his fighting utensils from thin


air, Noctis can also phase into nothingness to dodge
attacks something bound to become a key part of
your strategy. After a bit of practice, you find theres
natural rhythm as you weave dodges between strikes.
The combat opens up further when you learn the
powerful warp ability, which sees you teleporting
to safe recovery areas, or careening straight into
whatever nasty-type is bothering you. Crashing into
the huge Iron Giant by warping from the other side
of the arena at the end of the demo is a special kind
of joy. As tactical and involving as the turn-based
combat of previous FF games can be, nothing quite
compares to getting all personal and smashing stuff
up yourself.
With the series usually having a huge
Factrick
range of weapons and spells, however,
1 . c h a n g i n g F a c e s a mere four D-pad slots seems limiting.
Several of the plates placed As ever, you can swap things out to better
throughout the demo let
suit certain areas, but who wants to be
you turn into monsters,
or even a toy car.
constantly diving into menus? And while
selecting a spell to use is easy, aiming is
2. prize Fighter
a faff by the time youve targeted onto
theres a secret weapon
hiding at the top of the
something, its often moved out of range.
stately building during the
Fine-tuning, to keep combat fun for the
iron giant boss fight.
full 40 to 50-hour story, is clearly still
3 . ta k e a r i g h t
needed before September.
in the first zone, theres
What weve seen of the world so far,
a hidden path that lets
though, looks absolutely gorgeous. In one
you see just how huge
leviathan is going to be.
area, you shrink to the size of a mouse and
have to navigate a huge stately room. Its
surreal, but it lets you get close enough to inspect
magazine covers and biscuit tins. So much attention
has been lavished on even the smallest of details
the world has a realistic, human touch.

princely pleasures
above Pinball effort Justice Monsters Five is the mini-game
of choice for this Final Fantasy outing. Screw Blitzball.

above Your car, the regalia, can turn into an airship to make
exploration easier, but only near the end of FFXv.

FFXV is taking a lot of cues from the likes of The


Witcher 3 with its open-world approach. The demo
may stop you wandering off too far, but we keep
glimpsing snippets of vast plains, lush forests and
huge cities cut into floating cliffsides just waiting
to be explored. If several 100ft-tall gods can happily
stroll around with plenty of space, then there should
be loads of room for our gang to go on day trips.
One slight fear is that, right now, those huge fields
look pretty empty. There are monsters to hunt, but
we havent yet heard anything about any side-quests
the backbone of any good open-worlder. All that
space is nice and all, but theres a risk of it feeling
soulless if theyre just empty zones in which to ferry
yourself between plot points.
After ten years in development, a changing of
hands and a switching of title, theres a lot of
expectation on Final Fantasy XVs shoulders. Theres
still a lot we dont know, but if it lives up to its lofty
goals, it could be the highlight of this generation.

035

Preview

Flight sections come in both linear and open arena varieties the latter is a surprisingly competent attempt at proper Star Wars dogfighting action.

Well get to hunt


rathtars With
han and CheWie
before the film.
036

Remember Rey sliding


down the dune in the film?
Its inspired an SSX-style
sandboarding section.

Above BB-8s even cuter in Lego form than he is in


the movie. And yes, during an early cutscene, he
does indeed give Finn a flamethrower thumbs up.

PRevIeW

formAt Ps4/Ps3/Ps Vita / etA 28 June / Pub Warner bros / dev tt games

lego stAr WArs:


the force AWAkens
The tie-in thats a Force to be reckoned with
Whatever you do, dont call it
just another Lego game. Sure,
over the last 11 years, youve
become accustomed to that story
playing out across tie-ins to the
Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park, Harry
Potter, The Lord Of The Rings and Pirates Of The
Caribbean sagas. The most recent release, Lego
Marvels Avengers, suggests its a pattern thats
offering diminishing returns, too. But if this game
is another anything, its another reminder of why
you fell in love with TT Games unique take on
the legendary Lucasfilm universe in the first place.
As we pick our way through a trio of levels, it
becomes clear that the next Lego outing is delivering
something very special. On a surface level, it offers
familiar mechanics with a couple of new
features thrown in. Yet the combination
of the setting, the puzzles, the visual gags
fActrick
1. clAss Act
and John Williams peerless score combines
to elevate The Force Awakens plastic
some of the films stars,
such as daisy ridley,
incarnation far above the tie-in crowd.
recorded extra dialogue
lines for the game.
2. ePisode 6.5

the fArce unleAshed

Rey and BB-8 have just met on Jakku.


After a brief sandboarding session that, at
a glance, could be mistaken for a rebooted
SSX, the duo is confronted with a massive,
3 . t h e b r i c k o f i t hollowed-out Star Destroyer. Dont
expect five different hub
remember things happening this way round
levels, too: Jakku, takodana,
in the film? Thats because they didnt.
starkiller base, dQar and
the millennium falcon.
We wanted to make something of Rey
meeting BB-8 and forging that relationship,
says lead story designer Graham Goring. We
thought it was important to do that in a level
rather than a cutscene, but obviously if its just in a
featureless desert and she tells one Teedo to go away,
that doth not a level make! Luckily, we were given
the freedom to build that up into something else.
With the license to create a custom adventure, TT
Games decided to take us back to that ship carcass
where we first meet Rey in the film. Inside, we find
puzzles galore, and an opportunity to test out new
mechanics most notably the Multi-Build ability.
Like the 3-in-1 Lego Creator sets lining shelves
of toy shops, its a way to piece together different

there are 18 levels in all


11 taken from the film, and
seven brand new tales set
between episodes Vi and Vii.

objects with the same pile of bricks.


By holding the left stick in certain
directions, were able to choose what
items to build. So begins a door puzzle
in which we unlock three mechanisms
by making specific items and ports,
then dismantle them to create others.
TT Games was given license to do
far more than just tweak some scenes
from the film its added its own Star
Wars stories to fill in blanks between
Episodes VI and VII. Long before
setting foot on the Eravana smuggling
freighter, well get to go hunt rathtars
with Han and Chewie. I got to name
a character in the Star Wars universe,
laughs Gorin, pinching himself.

AttAck the blocks

Upgraded combat shines (maxing out


a combo meter lets Rey unleash onehit KOs); robust platforming elements
stand out (moments of jeapordy
have us rapidly tapping r to regain
our grip if a handhold works its way
loose); Blaster Battles impress (the
camera snaps in close as we pop in
and out of cover, taking pot shots at
crowds of Stormtroopers); and sandbox
flying sections are fully formed
slices of filmic dogfights (who needs
Battlefront?). But above all else, its the
little touches that make a difference.
Its the sight of minifigs sliding
down dunes in the background of
scenes, and the way BB-8 scuffs games
of tic-tac-toe into the sand. Its the
slapstick cutscenes and the ability to
play Holochess. Its the sight of Kylo
Ren having a teenage tantrum in a
bedroom plastered with posters. And
its the sensation that this has been
made with the kind of love not seen
since the first Lego games. Much like
the film itself, this perfectly recaptures
the originals mood, and its destined
to thrive because of it.

037

Preview

The SeRieS killcam now ShowS


kniveS RiPPing
ThRough muScle
and oRganS.

A flythrough of the Regilino


Viaduct level reveals
hundreds of enemies
and miles of pathways.

Format PS4 / eta 2016 / pub Rebellion / Dev Rebellion

Sniper elite 4

The World War II shooter goes full Metal Gear


Italy, 1943. Or could it be Afghanistan,
1984? Theres good reason for the
confusion Sniper Elite 4 bears more
than a passing resemblance to Metal
Gear Solid V. Rebellions PS4 blaster might not
technically be set in an open world, but when its
smallest level is three times bigger than Sniper
Elite IIIs largest, and its chapters can take hours
to finish, the word sandbox really begins to apply.

can see the blade rip through muscle


and organs as you slide it home) and
can booby trap bodies in order to take
out others. With AI that aggressively
investigates your last known position,
the tools are there to really monkey
with enemies and gleefully lead them
into ambushes. You monster.

Having shot his way through northern Africa in


Sniper Elite III, American marksman Karl Fairburne
is now creeping through the coastal fishing villages,
shadowy forests and holey monasteries (geddit?) of
Italy. Plugging enemies from range still forms a big
part of the action, but with Nazis able to triangulate
your location from just two or three shots, and the
sprawling levels home to hundreds of foes, you need
to do much more than find a solitary snipers nest
and unload your bullets in order to progress.
As a result, close-quarters stealthing has been
brought to the fore. Whistling at enemies to distract
them before jumping out of windows and shimmying
across ledges, Big Boss-style, is commonplace. Karls
also a dab hand with a knife (the series gory X-ray
Kill Cam now triggers for melee kills, too, so you

Again, just like in Metal Gear Solid,


missions are packed with optional
secondary objectives and collectibles.
Identifying and executing key Nazis
and Italian fascists can prevent backup from being called if youre spotted,
and if you do mess up, its not all over
you get the same, pulse-pounding
thrill in trying to escape a meltdown
situation. Its far closer to Kojimas
epic than it has any right to be.
Keen to make amends for the
disappointment of Sniper Elite III,
Rebellion has really upped its game. In
the war against Sniper Ghost Warrior
3, this has the early advantage.

carry on camping

above The infamous X-ray


cam will also trigger if you
shoot barrels. Seeing a body
ravaged by an explosion in
slo-mo is rather horrible.

Preview

ForMat PS4 / eta 9 JUN / Pub EA / dev DICE

Mirrors edge Catalyst


Speedrunning towards Game Of The Year contention

040

No guns. Yes, theyve gone.


Catalyst, it seems, is a Mirrors
Edge follow-up thats well aware
of its predecessors problems, and
getting rid of the maligned gunplay
is just one of the ways that DICE
has revised its free-running first-person cult hit.
While Faiths story has been rebooted, though,
and the action has moved to an open world, you
can breathe easy this is faithful (look, allow us
the one pun) to the original in all the right ways.
The team, for example, knew the platforming didnt
need fixing. Instead of making the wonderfully
complex wall-running, leaping and sliding any
simpler, theyre instead reintroducing some of those
ideas through an upgrade tree, meaning its all a little
easier to learn. In the first game, Faith started with
the ability to instantly spin 180 degrees on the spot,
using u, and avoid a painful landing, by
rolling with p at the last second. These
are now moves you have to unlock, the
FaCtriCk
1 . F i g h t i n g F o r C e idea being that throwing less at the player
right at the start will make these things
Faiths combat has been
revamped. You can knock
easier to incorporate as you go. Once
foes out on the move, or kick
youve got these upgrades within an hours
them into each other.
play, running around feels as intricate and
2. hard reset
thrilling as it ever did.
The story here is pretty
much rebooted, but while it
looks nicer, it still feels like
a generic dystopian tale.

on the run

The platforming in particular, and


that fluid first-person movement, was
You can set your own time
something that was so right that we had
trials around the open world
to look at it, preserve it, but also see
then list them publicly on
PSN, or just with friends.
where we could improve it, says producer
Amo Mostofi. We can play Catalyst on
muscle memory alone, but there are tweaks to the
free-running that players might miss. There were
certain elements in terms of the movement that
we could improve. Perhaps they might not even be
recognisable to the player, you may not even notice
it, but weve had game designers look at that, weve
had our engineers building into that. Theyre very
proud of it.
Perfecting the platforming makes sense when you
consider that one of the biggest additions to Catalyst
is user-generated time trial challenges. These can be
found dotted around the open world, and each has
its own leaderboard, with an algorithm behind the
3. soCial CliMber

scenes to sort out the best and most


popular ones. You can set your own
runs by placing the checkpoints
where you want.
You can share these publicly, or
just with friends if you dont want
speedrunners coming along and
beating you at your own race. Topping
the leaderboard for someone elses
time trial is like discovering a new
way to hurt somebodys feelings.
Considering you can place these
anywhere in the open world, theyll be
fundamental to the extended lifespan
of Catalyst with the right set of
friends either tremendous fun, or
detrimental to a happy existence.

high rise

Another user-generated element is


the BE Emitter you can climb to
a particularly high part of the world,
drop this noise-emitting device, then
challenge another player to reach it
via a companion app. This gives you a
better incentive to explore the world,
find secret areas and max out the
possibilities of Faiths skillset. It also
means that Catalyst isnt just about
running around at high speed.
This ensures theres a puzzle
element to getting around, which
offers a change in pace, similar to
some of the slower, trickier levels in
the original. The map throws in plenty
of DICEs own fetch quests and trial
runs to ensure youre never short of
things to do in this gorgeous city.
It feels like DICE looked at the first
game and retained everything that
players liked about it, then layered
a bunch of more modern, onlinefocused touches on top. Everything
that needed fixing seems to have
been addressed in some capacity with
Catalyst, while, with the new social
challenges and a whole open world
in tow, its determined to keep you
playing a lot longer this time.

Preview

Sections of the city glow red like an integrated route planner to show you where to go, but you can turn it off with the right stick if youd rather just explore.

RUNNINg ARoUND
FEElS AS INTRICATE
AND ThRIllINg
AS IT EvER DID.
041

Faiths story is presented


in fancy cutscenes, but
this dystopian rebellion
yarn has yet to grab us.

above Faiths hand-to-hand combat abilities have


been expanded this time around she can even
shove her enemies off the top of buildings.

Preview

on
the
box

Think Frank
From Donnie
Darko, buT sTyleD
by 90s ravers.

judged only by
their covers

DeaD islanD
DeFinitive eDition
Afro Samurai creator
Takashi Okazakis
talented fingerprints
are all over your foes.

Format Ps4 / eta summer / Pub The Game bakers / Dev The Game bakers

042

Co-op is key in this survival


horror with a difference.
Inspired by Spice Girls hit 2
Become 1, you are half of a
sliced-up zombie. Find the
other half, while feeding on
killer humans who want to
make you more dead.
Format Ps4 eta 31 may

Furi

Going down the rabbit hole with this boss fight slasher
The reward for hacking through crowds
of fodder in most action games is the
juicy boss fight thats waiting to test
your abilities at the end of a level.
The Game Bakers ingenious twist on the ageold formula, however, is that the boss fight is the
level, with your enigmatic swordsman going toeto-toe with just the one challenging foe per stage.
Should be a cake walk, right? Nope. Prepare for
meticulous punishment.
Context is brief before we dive into the fight. Our
nameless futuristic samurai is being held prisoner,
his guard mocking him as a bringer of death
and gleefully promising to kill him over and over
again. Theres bad news for that fool, however, as a
fluorescent bunny think Frank from Donnie Darko,
but styled by 90s ravers frees us. Its time to
make him eat his words, with Hotline Miami-esque
synth music pounding in the background.

anger management

Furis opening fight is split between two distinct


phases. To begin with, its pretty much a bullet hell,
as our hero squares off against his jailer in a large,
perfectly circular arena. Using classic twin-stick
controls, we frantically chip away at his health while
dashing with q to dodge the bullets hes sending
our way. Once hes down, we whisk in and go into
the second phase.
Close up and confined to a much smaller area of
the map, this is a tense, calculated duel rather than a
sloppy button-hammering slog fest. You can tap r
to slash, or hold it to deliver a more devastating blow

but those who live by the attack


is the best form of defence mantra
quickly end up swallowing their own
teeth. Instead, theres an emphasis on
waiting for an enemy to strike first
before timing your parry with e,
providing a window in which to secure
a few hits. Not that this villain is a
one-trick pony, mind. If you notice
the area youre standing in is glowing
red, its time to get out of Dodge.
Otherwise, you can expect a sword
in your sternum.
This brief introduction to Furis
unusual world has a ferocious pace,
but its stop/start nature transforms
fights into cerebral chess matches that
reward brains over braggadocio. Dont
worry though, theres still a pleasing
arcade rush to pulling off combos.
As long as it keeps you on your toes
throughout every scrap, this should be
a memorably stylish odyssey.

one Piece
burning blooD

Calling all older siblings,


wind-up merchants and lowlevel bullies! This rhythmaction teaser is for you.
Titter, poke and prance until
your enraged opponents
blood literally boils.
Format Ps4 eta 3 jun

carmageDDon:
max Damage

above This guy frees us from jail. Considering


the beating we get, we kinda wish he hadnt.

Youre Dave, a typical,


happy-go-lucky kinda guy.
Until you find the skull
earring, that is. Now youre
Demonic Dave, with the
power to control all cars
to satisfy your every whim.
Format Ps4 eta summer

Preview

itS claSSic
HolMeS, But witH
a daSH oF downey
and a SPrinkle
oF cuMBerBatcH.

Theres an immediate sense of


familiarity if you played Crimes
And Punishments. Didnt enjoy
that? This likely isnt for you.

FormaT PS4 / eTa 27 May / PuB BigBen interactive / Dev FrogwareS

Sherlock holmeS: The DevilS DaughTer


True to Sir Arthur, but with a touch more laughter
This eighth outing of Frogwares
crime-solving series contains many
parts one might consider elementary:
Batman-style detective mode, character
exposition via QTE, and an over-arching storyline
in which your deductions and conclusions
ultimately shape the 20-hour tales climax.
Happily, it also adds something lacking from
earlier instalments: humour.
Previous game Crimes And Punishments Sherlock
was staid and stuffy. Devils Daughter Sherlock
might look the same at least until you get to work
reshaping his facial hair into something thoroughly
Brick Lane 2016 but hes been given a more
contemporary voice, literally and figuratively.

Baker TreaT

New actor Alex Jordans delivery weds exuberance


with experience, this revised interpretation of the
Baker Street detective still resolutely his own man,
yet imbuing a sprinkle of Cumberbatch and a dash
of Downey Jr. Take a scene in which he performs an
exorcism with Shakespearian theatrics: marching to a
mantlepiece and exclaiming, Fire and flames! Better
for crumpets than foul-toothed demons!

For me, the humour is a way [for


Devils Daughter] to be more modern,
says producer Aurelie Ludot. The
Victorian era is quite stiff, and humour
enables us to distort these serious
situations. Its extended to Sherlocks
pet mutt, too playable here as he
was in Crimes And Punishments. You
can play as Toby again its the same,
except the trail you follow is a bit
more interesting, says Ludot. We play
it for comedy with the music and the
fact that hes intelligent but looks like
a very old guy with big ears.
The laughs dont always work.
Returning American character Orson
Wilde is a one-man band of cringe,
spitting out gags about having tea at
five to prove his Englishness, and not
wanting to hang for a crime because
the gallows will mess up my hair.
Even so, its refreshing to see a series
with such a starchy collar finally undo
its top shirt-button. If the puzzles
match the laughs, this may yet elicit
cries of excellent.

above Sensibly, there are


no mini-maps in Devils
Daughter after all, sat
navs didnt exist at the turn
of the twentieth century.

Preview

aS Dark SoulS
veteranS know,
intenSe Difficulty
leaDS to a wave
of SatiSfaction.

Youre followed around by a


little door opening doo-dad,
much like your Ghost in Destiny,
minus the Nolan North.

format PS4 / eta Summer / pub machine heart GameS / Dev machine heart GameS

Hyper LigHt Drifter

Futuristic Lassie proves completely barking


Theres a thin line between being
abstract and utterly unfathomable and
this indie hopeful doesnt so much
walk this line as mainline off it. Hyper
Light Drifter is bonkers. But its mad in a weirdly
earnest way, rather than a fun way depending
on your threshold for pretension, it might just
turn you away. That would be a huge shame, as
behind the square-headed dog leading you across
a bubblegum-coloured pixel-verse (we think
thats what the story is about) lies a devious and
maddeningly satisfying top-down action RPG.
Yes, we really did say square-headed dog.
The titular Drifter is a cape-wearing type with
an initially easy-to-grasp moveset. Youve got a
burst dodge, a laser sword triple-swipe combo and
rudimentary healing skills. On top of this, you also
have a laser pistol (and, later, other ranged options),
which recharges as you deal out melee damage.
Its a neat trick that incentivises mixing up attacks,
forcing you to actively move around each arena.
Combat can get very intense as a result. As more
varieties of enemies get introduced, from shurikentossing frogs to ground-pounding crystal ice golems,
you find that death is only ever one mistake away.

This is a difficult game, and while


death will only ever put you back
outside the room you were just in,
it can be incredibly frustrating. As
Dark Souls veterans know all too
well, however, such intense difficulty
leads to an eventual wave of all
encompassing satisfaction.

rainbow bite

For all its difficulty, its easy to feel


cool while playing it, dodging slomo bullets and darting about like
a rainbow dervish, all in the sultry
shade of your new favourite gaming
soundtrack (by Disasterpeace, the
chap responsible for Fezs music).
We curse the lack of invincibility
frames, with a slight drop in rate
rearing up every so often. Plus the fact
we cant quite figure out what its all
about. But we still reel away from each
enemy encounter on a luxuriant high.
For those missing a new DmC thrill
ride, or burnt out by the Souls series,
this could be your next big thing.

above You can choose your


route through the levels
from the start, though some
will be easier than others.
(Hint: definitely go east.)

Preview
Resurrection sequel Rage
Burst adds three new
weapon modes and normalattack-buffing Blood Arts.

a gaPing tentacle
maw exPlodeS from
our gun to Suckle
the loot. yummy.
Format PS4/PS Vita / Eta 30 aug
PuB Bandai namco / dEv Bandai namco

God EatEr 2:
raGE Burst/
rEsurrEction
Become the Aragami killer

Who eats to forget their problems?


A cookie here, seven cheeseburgers
there How about the corpses of giant
monsters? Youre in luck. Action-JRPG
series God Eater is coming west with double
helpings of deific deliciousness. Buy God Eater 2:
Rage Burst, and youll get God Eater Resurrection
(the remaster of the first game) for free.
Dashing around a winged Aragami beast under
Resurrections burnt-orange sky, we deal deft sword
slices until a charge flattens us. Luckily, our God
Arc weapon can shapeshift from Sword to Gun to
Shield Mode. One tap of u and our blade folds
back into a meaty minigun. Now thats more like it.
Once weve pumped some lethal lead into the
scaly scary, we hungrily hold w over its carcass
and a gaping tentacle maw explodes from our gun
to suckle weapon-crafting materials. Yummy.
Thank God Eater theres loot to go around:
working with friends in four-player full story co-op
and online multiplayer is essential. Producer Yusuke
Tomizawa warns us: Other games make things
easier. God Eater is challenging. Youll be surprised
how difficult it is to defeat the first boss.

above Freebie Resurrection lays the groundwork for the


series saga of plagues and conspiracy. Also, bearded dragon!

045

Preview

preview
round-up

Its JRPG oclock,


as we discover how
Tales Of Berseria is
reinventing itself and
watch Sword Art
Online continuing to
put the murder into
MMO. If anime isnt
your jam, why not
sample the retro
stylings of Mekazoo

046

Mekazoo
ForMat PS4
eta Summer
pub Good mood CreatorS
dev Good mood CreatorS

this 2.5d platformer wastes


no time in hitting all of our
favourite nostalgia buttons,
with music that apes SNeSera donkey Kong and an art
style that would fit in with
the golden era of Crash
and rayman. unfortunately,
our playthrough on co-op
leaves us with a minor
headache. each player
controls a specific animal,
each of which is better
suited to certain situations.
only one player, however,
is allowed on screen, with
the other one stabbing
w when they want to sub
themselves in. Its just too
convoluted for the type
of speedrunning itch that
mekazoo tries to scratch.

Sword art
online:
Hollow
realization
ForMat PS4/PS VIta
eta autumN
pub BaNdaI NamCo
dev aqurIa

of the many possibilities


for PS Vr, were hoping
death games arent one of
them. Based on an anime
about a Vr mmo, in which
snuffing it in-game also
means real-world byebyes, this JrPG series puts
you in a mercifully less
mortal situation. tactical
approaches to protagonist
Kiritos sword-swinging
pay dividends direct your
clan of three aI mates to
make efficient mincemeat of
mobs. at least youre safe
in the knowledge you wont
die for real. Probably.

taleS oF berSeria
ForMat PS4 / eta 2017 / pub BaNdaI NamCo
dev BaNdaI NamCo

Weve now had 20 years of gorgeous,


character-driven JrPGs from the
tales series so how do you keep
things fresh? try a series first: hot-headed
Velvet is tales first ever solo female
protagonist, and shes pretty angry about
the whole betrayal/dead parents/infected
daemon-fist thing. Vengeance it is, then.
enemy-squishings been overhauled and a
new Soul Gauge system has you stun foes
to steal their souls. But its not all doom and
daemons. With charming new characters
as well, we cant wait to see more of tales.

SerapH

ForMat PS4 / eta tBa


pub dreadBIt GameS
dev dreadBIt GameS

aiming is for schmucks.


Why worry about lining up
those dual pistols when you
could be concentrating on
cartwheeling around ancient
ruins and destroying your
sci-fi shins with a badass
knee-slide? that certainly
seems to be dreadbits
attitude in this interesting,
platform-heavy shooter
that adopts an always on
auto-aim to ensure players
focus on evasion and flashy
movement. You may not
have to worry about being a
crackshot, but that doesnt
mean Seraph is a cakewalk.
a dynamically scaling
difficulty level means you
have to keep on your toes
to help the title character
evade all types of beastie.

lovely
planet

ForMat PS4 / eta SPrING


pub tINY BuIld
dev tINY BuIld

You know what PS4 needs?


more trippy first-person
shooter gun ballets. tiny
Builds take on gunplay
rocks one of the most
unique visual aesthetics
weve seen in ages, and that
imaginative flare extends
well beyond combat. You
shoot enemies who take
the form of cubes with
unbearably sad faces
with a gun that looks like
a snooker cue. Its kinda
like Katamari damacy
descended on the Crucible.
With more than 100 bitesized levels, the action
focuses on conquering
online leaderboards through
speedruns. this could be
adorably addictive.

the OPM INtervIew Q

Forging
a new
reality
OPM sits down with Sony
Computer Entertainment Europe
CEO Jim Ryan to get the skinny
on PS VR and PS4s future
048

rom the moment we again


donned the headset and dove
into the kaleidoscopic magic
of PlayStation VR, at this
years GDC event in San
Francisco, we knew it would
set the games industry aflame.
Unparalleled wonder unfolds
high-octane shootouts,
mind-bending puzzle
chambers, rhythm-violence beetle-riding
all with us at the heart of the experience.
But despite enjoying that instant immersion,
we still have plenty of questions about the new
tech. How in the name of Kratos will Sony
manage to sell it at the low price of just 349?
Can we expect PlayStation VR to branch out
beyond games? And are we going to fling that
fancy headset straight off our bonces when
heading virtual footballs in The Headmaster?
Fortunately, we found ourselves in a small
room with a man able to answer all of those
questions and more the one and only Jim
Ryan, European boss of Sony Computer
Entertainment. In our exclusive interview,
he reveals how the company
learnt from the mistakes
of the PS3 era; how vital
it is to correctly
market PS VR
for the masses;
oh, and we may
just have
pressed him
on a certain
lovable scamp
called Crash

the PlayStation europe boss


has his noggin firmly in place,
having mastered upcoming PS
vr footy sim the headmaster.

049

the OPM INtervIew

sonys
expertise and
heritage allows
us to put
playstation Vr
together
to sell at 349
and still
make money.
OPM: First of all, congratulations on 36
million PS4s being sold thats quite the
achievement. Did you ever imagine youd
be hitting that big a number so soon?
Jim Ryan: Um (Laughs). Thats an interesting
050

experiencing vr is key to
understanding its potential,
so Sony could be taking
trial events on the road.

question to start! I think probably the honest


answer is no. I think we were confident in the
proposition that we had; we obviously made
a number of I shouldnt hesitate to use the
word mistake mistakes with PS3, and we
were very single-minded and very determined
to try and address each of those mistakes.
We engaged in a lot of soul-searching
I think we got most of the boxes that had a
cross against them in the PS3 era ending up
with a tick against them this time around. So
we were confident, but I dont think I doubt
that anybody expected us to be this successful.

OPM: Were obviously keen to talk about


PlayStation VR. Since the big announcements
at Marchs GDC event in San Francisco,
the reaction from our readers has been
extremely encouraging, very positive.
How have you been able to come in at such
an amazing price, relative to what the
competition is doing?
JR: I think the answer to that lies in Sonys

heritage. Obviously, and increasingly, Sony is an


entertainment company. It is also a very proud
consumer electronics business with a very
long and illustrious career of making great
consumer electronics hardware.
Whether its designing in an elegant or
effective manner; whether its sourcing
componentry from all around the world in
a cost-effective manner; or whether its
putting the thing together, this is
what Sony does.
This is a big part of Sonys
DNA. Its sometimes easy to
take this for granted in this
wonderful, networked world
that we live in these days,

Middle exclusives like Uncharted probably helped shift a few of those 36 million PS4s.
Left Bloodborne, another PS4 exclusive. Right Cross-Play with PC is already a thing.

but its actually something that allows us to bring all that knowledge and
expertise and heritage to bear. It has allowed us to put this thing together
in a manner that enables us to sell it at 349 and still make money.

OPM: Its great to see its not being rushed to market. October
seems to give you a good amount of breathing space to make
sure youve got the software support in place. Was that a
big factor when deciding the release date?
JR: It was a combination of that and also having what we
considered to be the right amount of hardware to put into

the OPM INtervIew Q & A


n e e d

t o

k n o w

JIM RYAn

the eUrO laUNCheS


leadINg tO PS vr

2010
PLAYSTATIOn MOVE
n The motion-sensing

controller, or wand, is
introduced to support PS3
(and later PS4). Receiving
widespread critical and
popular acclaim, it shifts
more than 15 million units
within two years, before PS
VR creates a fresh surge.

2012
PS VITA
n Sony launches its

powerful new handheld as


the successor to 2004s
PlayStation Portable. With
its name being taken from
the Latin for life, PS Vita
hits the market with day
one games such as
Uncharted: Golden Abyss.

2013
PS4
n Current-gen arrives and

PS4 never looks back. Being


the most powerful, socially
connected console to have
ever existed, and with an
abundance of boundarysmashing games, its little
surprise that its a huge
global success.

the market as well, so it was a combination


of software support and the timelines on the
hardware side of things.

OPM: Your job must be to convert as many


PS4 owners to PS VR as possible. How
do you do that, considering its such a
transformative experience that only really
comes across when you test it?
JR: Yeah, its a very good question, and

essentially thats the job of marketing. And


its quite a challenge. We certainly have great
knowledge about how to market traditional
gaming consoles weve done it for over 20
years now. I think were quite good at it and
we know what to do.
But this is different. As you say, its really
only when you try [PlayStation VR] that you
actually understand. So the marketing mix of
activities that we engage in to evangelise virtual
reality will be very different from the marketing
mix that we use when we took, for example,
PS4 to market. Theres going to be a much
greater emphasis on experiential, on trial,
to try and achieve exactly what you spoke of.

OPM: We were impressed by the scope of


demos available at GDC. Is there a big chance
to branch out and make PS4 more than just
a predominantly gaming platform?
JR: I think your use of the verb branch out

is absolutely correct because it is, after all, a


PlayStation product, and PlayStation stands for
gaming thats what we do, thats what were
about and that will be the principal area of
focus at the beginning.
But I think, as you yourself experienced
looking at some of these other things theyre
interesting and theyre fun and some of this
stuff is very relevant and very appealing to
gamers, so why wouldnt you offer those
sorts of experiences, and we will. But were
pretty clear-minded that gaming will be the
principle area of focus.

OPM: With the exception of multiplayer mini-games collection The


Playroom VR, whats your personal PlayStation VR highlight so far?
JR: [Football heading sim] The Headmaster.
OPM: For what reason?
JR: Because Im good at it! (Laughs)
OPM: Fair enough! When we saw the pitch for that game,
we were worried the headset might keep flying off?
JR: Yeah, well I was a bit worried my head would fall off!

But no those balls were bulleting into the top righthand corner of the goal every time. It was great!

OPM: Moving onto the wider spectrum of PlayStation,


PS4 was very much a console designed to evolve. How
has that gone so far? Where do you see the current PS4 in
the grand scheme of things? Is there still a long way to go?
JR: Yeah, obviously when you have a connected device like

PlayStation 4, the possibilities to significantly enhance the


capabilities of the device through firmware upgrades are considerable
weve already seen that over the life of PS4 with features such
as Share Play and a raft of other individually less significant, but
cumulatively actually very meaningful, functional enhancements to the

device. That will definitely continue we


have a roadmap. Much of this stuff is still
under wraps but were definitely, certainly not
standing still with PS4. Theres more to come!

OPM: This might infringe on some of those


things under wraps, but Early Access
programmes are something weve seen quite
a lot of on PC is that an area that you think
PlayStation can explore or wants to explore?
JR: I think its certainly something that were

open to. Its really a balance between offering


a proper experience and making all sorts
of things available. Theres a certain quality
threshold that we have to be sure to meet, or
at the very least to position the thing properly.
But were open to that.

OPM: We chuckled when Microsoft made


its announcement about cross-platform play,
as we thought, Well, weve been doing that
for a long time on PlayStation. But the
suggestion of possible cross-platform play
with other consoles is interesting. From
Sonys point of view, is PlayStation open
to that possibility?
JR: Well, you know, I couldnt really work out

what all the fuss was about in that Microsoft


announcement because its something as you
say weve been doing. Weve done it with
PC, weve done it with Xbox consoles. Were
completely open to any developer or publisher
who wants to have the conversation; we always
have been and we remain so.

OPM: Last years E3 was incredible. Looking


ahead to the next E3 show, in June, how
do you begin to piece together something
mindful of what you did last year, while not
staying in its shadow?
JR: Uh (Laughs) You know, one of the great
things about working in the entertainment
business is that things evolve and new
things start to get worked on. As one
game comes out, the development team
starts work on the next thing, and its
a kind of endless cycle.
Youre right, matching last years E3
will be quite some challenge, but Im
pretty relaxed and quite confident that
we will rise to that challenge.

OPM: One last question. This ones from


one of our readers...
JR: Theyre usually the most dangerous!
(Laughs)

OPM: At last Decembers PlayStation


Experience, SCE America CEO Shawn
Layden walked out on stage wearing
a Crash Bandicoot T-shirt. Is Sony
aware of how much fans want Crash
Bandicoot? Is there anything that can
be done to get him back on PlayStation?
JR: Um were certainly aware of the

considerable affection even reverence in


which the mighty Crash is held. But nothing
to update at this stage in that area.

051

Ghostbusters

052

spiritual

New studio Fireforge aint afraid of no tie-in. as part of a secret first

Ghostbusters

053

successor
play, Ben tyrer meets the team behind Ghostbusters ps4 rebirth

Ghostbusters

oes any genre


inspire more
undeserved apathy
than the licensed
tie-in? Theres
a towering
scrapheap of
games only out
to capitalise on
stratospheric opening
weekend numbers, sure, but there
are also those that soar past that
low benchmark. They dont merely
capture what makes their universe
special, but like a hug from the
Stay Puft Marshmallow Man
engulf you in everything you hold
dear about the IP. Its a special skill,
one that can elude even the very
best of developers. So inheriting
one of the most beloved series of
all time for your studios debut?
That sounds harder than crossing
the streams without ending the
world. Step forward, Fireforge.

054

CapturinG the Spirit(S)

Chris Tremmel is project director


and, with a CV encompassing names
such as Insomniac, EA and Crystal
Dynamics, aware of the monumental
task his team faces. Licensed
games come with their own set of

the team worked with


original ghostbusters
director ivan reitman.
challenges, explains Tremmel. The
big thing I learned on the Lord Of
The Rings games was to stay true
to the franchise as best as possible,
while trying to figure out what fans
of the property were going to enjoy.
The first thing that jumps out
about Fireforges debut is the striking
art style. Moving away from the films
realism means its easy to dismiss
this as being for kids, but the dev
insists this is a game for every
busters fan. The industry has gone
back to this style of game. Just
because it looks like that no longer
means its a kiddie game. I mean, that
kind of used to be the thing, right? If
a game looked a certain way, it was
assumed it was made for kids, but as
the industry has matured, were at a
place where that art style doesnt
dictate the target audience anymore.

In fact, when the studio came to


designing Ghostbusters, they went
to the father of the franchise, Ivan
Reitman, as well as the makers of
this years movie reboot. Just from a
validation point, it was important for
the team to be able to get our concept
in front of Ivan and hear his feedback
and hear what he had to say.
Along with him, we also worked
with [the new films director] Paul
Feig a little bit and with Amy Pascal,
whos the producer of the film. We
didnt get to work with the original
cast, but Ivan seemed to be the
spokesperson from that group. The
interactions weve had with him have
been really good its been all the
way from the look of the game to the
music to the voiceovers, the locations,
the ghosts those sorts of things.
New York is also a huge part of
Ghostbusters charm seeing the
more glamorous areas of the city, not
just the grimier parts, covered in all
sorts of spectral slosh and Tremmel
didnt want to lose any of that appeal,
with the levels staying true to the
original aesthetic. We have locations
that are pretty standard to the
Ghostbusters world, like mausoleums
and haunted hotels and a sanatorium,
but we tried to take different spins
to it. Our hotel this time is actually
aboard a historic cruise ship, while
our cemetery deals with a lot more
above-ground crypts and
mausoleums. So while we took some
standard approaches to locations, we
also tried to add a slightly new twist
to some of them.

Slime of the Century

The debut developer has been


working on this latest bustin entry
for over a year and Tremmel tells
us that, from the start, couchplay
multiplayer has been the bedrock for
this tie-in. There are a lot of online
games out and a lot of PvP-style
games out, but we always thought
that the Ghostbusters franchise lent
itself really well to allowing a group
of friends to play together.
Surprisingly, this means there
will be no online multiplayer for
Fireforges Ghostbusters. Producer
Dino Verano, from publisher
Activision, explains: We want people
to be able to be playing together and
interacting with each other and we
want it to be friendlier, [to suit] a
wide variety of audiences.

hang on a sec, shouldnt bodies

the cad on the right, holding


the PKe meter, is described
by Activision as bill Murrayish. thems big shoes to fill.

in the morgue be lying down? Gulp. All of Fireforges levels have been designed with the original Ghostbusters aesthetic in mind, only with a little added twist.

Getting good at playing


with your proton-packing
buddies is vital its the
fastest way to level-up.

055

Ghostbusters

Before we get onto the streets, its


time to meet the new guys and gals.
You and up to three mates take on
a wet-behind-the-ears crew of NYs
finest paranormal protectors, whose
names are blank at the start, meaning
its left to you to decide what they
answer to. Do you go for the classic
Venkman, Stantz, Spengler and
Zeddemore lineup? Or take the Xcom
approach and achieve some goals with
your real-life squad?
Fireforge gives them distinct
personalities, but the idea is that
youre a member of the team. You
can relate to these characters just
through their different personalities,
but its not about these new
characters and where they come from,
says Tremmel. Its really about you

056

we have 16 upgrades
for each character,
each with five stages.
putting yourself into the position of
being a Ghostbuster and choosing the
character you feel you relate to most.

total BrotoniC reverSal


Taking place after the events of the
new film, we jump into The Aldridge
Mansion. Using a Diablo-esque
top-down view to keep the whole
team on-screen, we sneak through the
deserted house, scanning the room
with our PKE meters until we stumble
upon floating skulls.
Proton pistols at the ready, we blast
them away using the right stick to
aim, and i to shoot. As we attempt
to keep the bookshelves ectoplasmfree, we need to retire this levels
boss by firing up the proton pack,
frantically wrestling and slamming
her into the ground, then finishing
her off by dumping her into the ghost
trap. This boss battle does a great job
of forcing you to experiment with
weapons and combinations, as you
and your partners probe the ghosts
weaknesses with grenades and proton
wands. Seeing the co-op award come
up for taking down ghosts together
always results in a mini high-five.
Like any strong team, each
Ghostbuster brings a little something
different to the party, such as having a
unique grenade and individual weapon
that only they can use. But dont

worry all four are equipped with


the classic proton wand, PKE meter
and ghost trap. Combining the
distinct advantages of each class gives
the game depth and adds bonus
points via the synergy system.
One character, for example, is
referred to by Tremmel as The
Heavy, courtesy of the minigun he
lugs around. If he chucks his slime
grenade, it slows down any ghoul that
gets hit by its gunk, giving the rest of
the team a chance to earn a little extra
XP. The dev explains, They receive a
synergy bonus or co-op bonus for
co-operating and you get a score
multiplier based on that. It increases
the scores for eliminating different
ghosts and allows the characters to
level-up a little bit quicker.
The top-down view and twin-stick
controls imply arcadey thrills, but
Tremmel insists that all upgrades help
build the ultimate wraith warrior.
Sixteen different upgrades for each
character can be purchased. Each of
those has five stages to it. You can
make a weapon stronger, make an area
effect larger, increase your movement
speed, increase a point bonus on the
trap mini-game, make the weapon
overheat last longer. Its a whole range
of things that you can really upgrade.

Like in any good panto,


there comes a time when
our heroes should have a
look at what lurks behind.

GhoSt of the paSt

Despite multiplayer co-op being


on the other end of the spectrum
to 2009s PS3 Ghostbusters effort,
Tremmel is open about how much it
influenced Fireforges project. Were
big fans of the third-person Atari
game. It nailed the feel of using the
proton wand and proton beam to
capture and wrangle ghosts, and get
them into the traps. We thought that
type of mechanic would be really
fun if brought into a team-based
environment where four people
could do that at the same time.
This might not have the huge
spectacle and original cast likenesses
of PS3s Ghostbusters, but instead
of lazily adopting the look of the
films, Fireforge is mixing distinctive
style with admirably old school
ambitions. Theres nothing youd
call revolutionary, but if PS4 busters
achieves its aim of gearing us up with
the latest protonic weaponry and
making us feel like the new recruits at
110 N Moore Street, well be as happy
as Ray Stantz sliding down a firemans
pole come 15 July.

Dont cross the streams!

Ghostbusters
hey, GooD
SpooKinG
project director
Chris tremmel
on forging firsts

opm: how will the single-player


campaign work?
Ct: You always have four Ghostbusters
on-screen at the same time. If Im
playing by myself then three characters
are AI-controlled, with two people, two
of them are AI-controlled, and so on.
the difference in the game is we
dynamically adjust the encounters
dependent upon the number of human
players. If youve got four players
together, the encounters are going
to be a little bit tougher.
opm: Does the multiplayer have a drop
in, drop out option?
Ct: For us, that was one of the very
first requirements. Making this kind of
game, there are a few anchor points
you have to hit, and that was one. It has
to be drop in and drop out, because the
levels are about 30 minutes each. It was
really important to make sure that if
somebody wanted to drop in while
halfway through, they could. or if
somebody needed to take a break and
jump out, they could. that comes from
us being fans of this kind of genre, and
running into games that didnt have that
type of thing. We felt we had to provide
that ability.
opm: how specifically will the
multiplayer mechanics tie into the
levelling-up system?
Ct: throughout a level, every character
maintains their own score. At the end
of each theres a little scoring segment
that adds up how many ghosts youve
eliminated, how many co-op assists you
got, how many hidden items you may
have found, etc. Characters then level
up through that process, and every time
a character levels up theyre given a
number of skill points that they can then
use to spend on the skill tree to enhance
their character. theres a whole range
of things you can upgrade, and if youre
playing with multiple people, each
character will level up independently
at the end of each level.

Fireforges art style does


a great job of combining
both cartoon and classic
visual effects.

the devs consulted both the original and reboot movie directors when designing the top-down style.
Decisions, decisions.
Do you switch out your
pack for the dual-pistols,
assault rifle or minigun?

opm: Whats it been like working on a


debut game after spending your career
with established studios?
Ct: Its inspiring to see people get really
excited, every day, about, say, a new
ghost thats in the game, or a new game
mechanic thats working. or even
when were at the stage were at right
now, where were doing a lot of tuning
and final tweaks on the game still
seeing people really excited about
playing it. thats the thing that always
gets me towards the end.
opm: finally, who is your favourite
Ghostbuster of all time?
Ct: I actually really love the new
holtzman character from the new film.
People will be pleasantly surprised
shes an awesome character.

057

Ghostbusters

058

Ghostbusters
chronoloGy
Films! Games! Toys! Ben Wilson charts
36 incredible years of an all-slime classic

1980
Good friends Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi costar in musical crime caper The Blues Brothers,
the second of the pairs three movies together
(the others being 1941 and Neighbors). After
its success, Aykroyd begins mapping a concept
called Ghost Smashers, in which the duo cross
time and space battling spirits with wands.

Ghostbusters

1983

1982

Aykroyd begins work on the script for


Ghost Smashers, many excerpts from
which will leak over the years. In this
version, The Stay Puft Marshmallow
Man is one of multiple Gozer
manifestations, Winston is instead
called Ramsey and a gluttonous
yellow mist known
as Onionhead
haunts the
Greenville
Guest
House. That
character
will go on to
become Slimer.

On 5 March, John Belushi passes away,


after being injected with a deadly mix
of cocaine and heroin. I was, in fact,
writing one of his lines when he died,
reveals Aykroyd years later. Following
Belushis death, Aykroyd sends a
half-finished script to Bill Murray. He,
in turn, recommends the project to
Animal House producer Ivan Reitman,
who has also already directed Murray
in comedies Stripes and Meatballs.
Reitman likes the comic elements,
but criticises the characterisation and
budget required to bring it to life.

1984

1985

After 15 weeks of
filming in New
York and LA,
the movie wraps
in February.
Its released in the States on 8 June,
grossing $13.6 million in its opening
weekend, and staying at number one
for five weeks. (Thirty years later, its
gross is estimated at an astonishing
$290 million.) In addition to the film,
the first Ghostbusters game is released
on Atari 2600. Its coded within six
weeks and sees you driving around
New York in Ecto-1.

The film is
released on
Betamax and
VHS with a
curious error:
the stereo soundtrack for the latter
version is accidentally reversed
from right to left during transfer.
Its corrected in future releases.
Don Shays Making Ghostbusters
book, featuring Bernie Wrightson
illustrations of monsters that didnt
make the film, is an instant hit and
goes on to be considered the films
bible. (In 2016, acquiring a copy will
set you back around 80.)

1986
Season one of cartoon The Real
Ghostbusters emerges. The characters
share the names of their film
counterparts, but arent based on
the actors although Ernie Hudson
auditions to reprise his role of
Winston, Arsenio Hall gets the part.
In the toon,
Slimer lives with
the busters as
a mascot-style
ally. It spawns
an official toy
line that grows
more bizarre with
each passing year.
Granny Gross
Ghost, anyone?

In January, Aykroyd
submits a revised
180-page script for
Ghostbusters, which
Reitman this time
likes, after making
some tweaks such
as setting the film in a
modern American city,
and bringing aboard
Harold Ramis. Columbia
Pictures chairman Frank
Price agrees to finance
the film, as long as it
doesnt cost more than
$25m. By October, as
preliminary second unit
photography begins in
New York, its budget is
already nearing the $30
million mark. Oops.

Philip Ritz/Wikipedia

1981

the busters hQ remains in use as a real-life


firehouse in NYCs tribeca neighbourhood.

1987
New videogame alert:
Burgertime developer Data East
releases top-down shooter The
Real Ghostbusters in arcades.
(Its later ported to Amiga and
Atari ST.) On the toon front
and in an incredibly bold
move for a kids TV show a
season two episode of The Real
Ghostbusters takes horror king
HP Lovecraft as inspiration.
The busters have to defeat the
Elder Gods after a cult uses
Necronomicon to unleash a
nefarious spirit. The eps title:
The Collect Call Of Cathulhu.

As well as the two official the real Ghostbusters games,


there was also the unlicensed Meikyuu hunter G in Japan.

059

Ghostbusters

1988
Filming of a movie sequel begins. Well
burn in hell if we call it Ghostbusters II,
insists Bill Murray. The first Ghostbusters
comic series emerges, published by Marvel
UK on these shores and NOW in the US.
On the cartoon front, writer J Michael
Straczynski walks away ahead of season
three. They proposed really offensive
things, he later tells
SFX. They wanted to
make Janine a mommy
character, instead of the
strong female character
shed been. They wanted
to make Winston, the
only black character, just
a driver, which I thought
was profoundly racist.

1989
Ghostbusters
II sorry, Bill
is released on
16 June. It plays at
2,410 cinemas, taking more than $29
million in its first three days. Its the
biggest opening weekend in cinema
history for one week, until Batman
takes $40 million. Cast members
include Bill Murrays brother, Brian
Doyle Murray, as a psychiatric doctor,
Dan Aykroyds niece, Karen Humber,
as a school child, and Ivan Reitmans
son Jason (now an Oscar-nominated
director himself), who insults the
Ghostbusters at a birthday party.

1991
060

On 5 October, after seven seasons, the


curtain falls on The Real Ghostbusters
cartoon. Pandering later series are
unrecognisable from its earlier tales
such as that Lovecraft
episode with Slimer (now
the focus of the show)
imagining himself in Jack &
The Beanstalk and entering
a dog show. Kenners toy
line also comes to an end
its final five figures are
glow-in-the-dark versions
of the Ghostbusters and
Louis Tully, known as
Ecto-Glow Heroes.

1990

A big-ish year on
the videogame front.
Ghostbusters II emerges
on various formats,
with the DOS version
standing out at one
point, you get to stomp
around New York as the
Statue Of Liberty. Sidescrolling platformer
Ghostbusters is also
released on Mega Drive.
Many fans consider
it non-canon as it
doesnt acknowledge
events of the sequel,
and only features three
playable Ghostbusters
Winston finds himself
completely excluded.

Its been a tough three decades for busters


games, but 1990 delivered ghostly treats.

1992

1993

Another farewell, this time to The


Real Ghostbusters comic books. In
the UK, its
amassed 193
issues in
four years,
plus four
annuals and
ten specials.
The NOWpublished US
comics also
call time, after
32 issues, two
annuals and
one special.

Aykroyd dismisses rumours of


Ghostbusters III in an interview with
Playboy. The one [film] I dont think
well necessarily further exploit is
Ghostbusters. It looks like thats about
had its run. It opened and Batman
opened the next weekend and wiped
us out that summer. Although we
made a good movie, it just wasn't as
commercially successful as everybody
thought it would be.

1994
In a TV interview, Aykroyd
suggests Ghostbusters III could
well be a possibility after all.
Ah, it might
happen, he
tells WWOR
Channel
9 News.
Ive got
a story
in mind
that Im
thinking
about. So
well see. Its
certainly something I always wanted
to do. Its just getting the other
players together.

Ghostbusters

1995

1996

More
Ghostbusters
III talk. Its
rumoured that neither Reitman nor
Murray are interested, while Aykroyd
tells AOL: Have script, will travel, but
not with all of the original players.
Singer Huey Lewis, meanwhile,
reaches a settlement with Ray Parker
Jr over a dispute concerning the
Ghostbusters theme. Lewis had sued
for copyright infringement, claiming
the now-legendary riff was borrowed
from his 1983 hit I Want A New Drug.
(Listening today, both rhythm and
melody are near-identical.)

Ghostbusters Spooktacular a special


effects show opened at Universal
Studios Florida in 1990 is closed.
Its original guise featured an actress
in the role of Gozer performing
acrobatics, while being fired at by a
cast of busters. Relaunched in 1993,
its second incarnation saw Louis
Tully (not played by Rick Moranis)
select three volunteers to help set
up equipment, before a lights-andsound experience leading to the
Marshmallow Mans on-stage demise.
Twister Ride It Out took its place.

1998

Lots more chatter


surrounding a third
film. The concept is
still strong and I think
that Harold and I can
pull it off, Aykroyd
tells Hollywood Online.
We're going to do a
Hades version of New
York. You look down
at the river and there's
a ferry of Wall Street
commuters, except
they're being shoved
off with pitchforks into
the river which is now
boiling blood. Hudson
(Winston) says hed
like to be involved.
Assuming there's gonna
be a third one, and
assuming I'll be asked,
I'd like to be a part of
it if the script is good,
as it should be.

1997
Animated hauntings return via
Extreme Ghostbusters, a spiritual
sequel to The Real Ghostbusters.
While his three contemporaries have
moved on, Egon Spengler remains
in the firehouse to look after Slimer
and train four successors: goth Kylie,
slacker Eduardo, paraplegic Garrett,
and brainiac Roland. Action figures
of all them except Garrett are
inevitably released, as well as Time
Crisis-aping PS1 shooter Extreme
Ghostbusters: The
Ultimate Invasion.
Unimpressed? So
are audiences, and
it lasts just one
40-episode season.

1999

2000

The films debut on


DVD as Aykroyd
completes the
first draft of
Ghostbusters III:
Hellbent. It would see the devil
sending spirits back to the real world
to roam Manhattan. Ray and Egon
are still busters at the head of a huge
franchise, but Winston is a doctor and
Peter has moved on to a new life with
Dana and Oscar. Theres a new car,
too: a 1989 converted Cadillac, Ecto12. If we were to go ahead with the
project, I would probably produce the
film, not direct it, admits Reitman.

Its dead, says Aykroyd of


Ghostbusters III, in a press conference
for new movie Stardom. Why?
A combination of not getting the
right story, and the business side
of things. Specifically, Bill Murrays
reluctance to be involved, and Sony
Pictures lack of interest in financing
the project, for which Aykroyd is
seeking $120 million. Theyre trying
to get bargains, they're trying to get
the next Blair Witch. But, you know,
sometimes you have to seed for the
big harvest to come in.

2001

2002

Remember the Parker Jr versus Huey


Lewis rumble? Its on again after
Lewis is accused of breaching the
confidentiality agreement pertaining
to the 1995 settlement, on VH1s
Behind The Music. "I suppose it
was for sale,
because,
basically, they
bought it, says
Lewis. Parker
sues and,
according to a
recent Reddit
AMA: Got a
lot of money.

IGN acquires the 1999 draft of the


Hellbent script, and drops swathes
of further detail. Fresh bustin meat
includes New Jersey punk Franky,
the dreadlocked
Lovell, child
genius Nat,
science graduate
Moira and Latino
beauty Carla.
Aykroyd declares,
however, the
film will never
happen with
Murray still
dead against it.

061

2003
Same old story, regarding film
three. Never. That will never
happen. Unless Bill Murray agrees.
Everyone else would love to do it,
Columbia, Harold Ramis, myself,
director Ivan Reitman, says
Aykroyd. Its a five-way rights
situation and Bill is locking up his
piece of the rights because he feels
that was work that he just wants
preserved and he doesnt want
it diluted. And as an artist, I can
respect that.

062

2004

2005

2006

Ghostbusters:
Legion, from
Canadian
publishing
house 88MPH
Studios, sees the
original characters return in comic
form albeit with events of the film
retconned so that everything takes
place in 2004. As such, references
to mobile phones, Starbucks and
Cameron Diaz all feature. Licensing
and financial issues plague the series,
and its curtailed after just four issues.

Presuming it
a non-starter,
Ramis divulges
even more details on
the canned third film
including the actors he and Aykroyd
had in mind for a new crew. We were
thinking Chris Rock, Chris Farley and
Ben Stiller taking over. That would
have worked, he tells Aint It Cool
News. Perhaps surprisingly, he shows
no regrets about the idea being killed
off. I cant say my heart was really in
it, you know... making the third one.

A Ghostbusters mobile game emerges,


and elicits universal mirth for its utter
hopelessness. The story sees you
ridding a millionaires home of ghosts,
but is absurdly long (with more than
100 rooms), features cookie-cutter
puzzles, and references none of the
original characters or movies. Its the
laziest of half-arsed cash-ins.

2007

Slovenian developer Zootfly


sends fans into a frenzy
when it drops Youtube
videos of a new, acelooking Ghostbusters PS3
game. Theyre taken down for
copyright reasons, but its clear
that the audience who grew up with
the films is desperate for a fully fledged,
quality videogame starring the old crew. Elsewhere,
Aykroyd announces it lives! regarding Ghostbusters III
as a CGI animated project, which will feature Murray
on vocal duties after all.

2008
Well, I think
the wounds from
Ghostbusters II
have healed, says
Murray regarding
the possibility of
a third film, adding in a somewhat
prescient manner, as it turns out
there's some funny girls I'd love to
see be Ghostbusters. A pencil-based
comeback occurs as IDW secures
comic book rights. Its first edition
sees the busters trying to resolve a
ghost war between Japanese Yakuza
and a US crime syndicate, and is
widely praised.

Ghostbusters

2010
2009
Developer Terminal Reality delivers
the bustin videogame so hoped for
in the wake of those Zootfly vids.
This is essentially the third movie,
says Dan Aykroyd of the blaster, set
two years after Ghostbusters II and
casting you as an unnamed fifth crew
member. All of the original actors lend
their voices to the game, and it scores
8/10 in issue #33 of OPM.

2012

Still no Bill. He will


not do the movie, says
Aykroyd. Hes got six
kids, houses all over
America. He golfs in
these tournaments where
they pay him to turn up
and have a laugh. Hes
into this life and living
it but I cant be mad at
him. Hes a friend first,
a colleague second.

Extreme Ghostbuster Kylie resurfaces


in the popular IDW comics, while
busters toys are officially in fashion
again, too. The new Mattel range,
launched the year before, even
includes EPA
blowhard and
buster hater
Walter Peck. In
much sadder news,
Ramis contracts
autoimmune
inflammatory
vasculitis, taking
away his ability
to walk.

2011
In a trade show programme,
it becomes clear that a third
film is coming, with a planned
release date two years later. Sony
Pictures Entertainment (SPE) has a
licensing programme targeting the
Ghostbusters core fan base for the
relaunch of the movie franchise in
2013, it reads.
Yes, we will be
doing the movie,
hopefully with Mr
Murray, confirms
Aykroyd. Also,
Ghostbusters:
Sanctum Of
Slime hits PS3.
Its terrible.

2013

2014

In December, Sony announces a raft


of big licensees whove signed on to
help celebrate the original films 30th
anniversary throughout the following
year. Among the most exciting are
Funko, the super-revered creators of
the POP! collectible figure range. They
dont disappoint, either,: the
four main busters, Slimer,
Marshmallow Man and
Ecto-1 are all
immortalised
in vinyl
over the
following
months.

A colossal blow.
On 24 February,
aged 69, Harold
Ramis passes away,
surrounded by his family.
The news is a devastating blow to his
contemporaries, and leads Reitman
to step away from the purported
threequel for good. With Harold
no longer with us, I couldnt see it,
he says. In October after so many
false starts a new flick is finally
confirmed, with Paul Bridesmaids
Feig taking on Reitmans mantle.

2015
Kristen Wiig, Melissa
McCarthy, Kate McKinnon
and Leslie Jones are confirmed
as the main, all-female cast
for the new Ghostbusters,
while the Funko range grows
again to include Domo
versions of Slimer and Stay
Puft. In February, US company
Cryptozoic launches a
Kickstarter for a Ghostbusters
board game and with more
than $1.5 million pledged, its
available worldwide less than a
year later. Ghostbusters Lego,
the all-new Ghostbusters crew. Left to right: Leslie Jones,
amazingly, is also now a thing. Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig and Kate McKinnon.

2016
A 15 July release date is locked in
for the new Ghostbusters movie,
with Murray, Aykroyd, Hudson
and Sigourney Weaver among
those confirmed for cameos.
Cryptozoic launches another board
game Kickstarter this time for
Ghostbusters II while a very wellknown UK
publication
named Official
PlayStation
Magazine
unveils the first
Ghostbusters
videogame
for PS4.

063

01

tie-ins

the year of the tie-in


More licensed treats set to brighten up 2016
01 TMNT: MuTaNTs iN MaNhaTTaN

02 baTMaN

All shell breaks loose in Platinums new brawler

Bats the Wayne to do it

Pub Activision dev PlatinumGames eTa Summer

064

It feels like weve been waiting since the days of


gloomy seaside arcades for a not-terrible Turtles
title, but Mutants In Manhattan glows with mutagenic
promise. Its being developed by Platinum, a studio so
talented at making action games that even its
Transformers one didnt stink. A Turtles game plays to
its strengths even more expect crisp third-person
action and immaculate hack n slash combat.
Just like the source material, each turtle has their
own thing Raph can enter stealth mode, Leo
focuses to slow down time, Mikey can refresh his
teammates abilities and Donnie can get wedgied in
the school toilets for being a nerdlinger (okay, that one
might be a lie). You can also shift between Turtles in
the single-player game, though we dont know why
youd want to play as anyone except Raphael.
The other bit of good news is this is based on the
excellent IDW comic run the story is by the same
author, Tom Waltz rather than the goofy, Michael
Bay-produced cinematic dogs egg. Our only minor
grumble is the lack of local co-op, but at least you can
play with four half-shelled heroes online. Yes, its okay
to allow yourselves a cheeky, Cowabunga! Go wild.

Pub Warner dev Telltale Games eTa 2016


Telltales games are all about choice, so Batman isnt
the most obvious fit. His decisions rarely get more
complex than how shall I break this criminals knees?
or which gargoyle should I brood on tonight?
Thankfully, this promises something more cerebral.
The focus is on the complex mind of Bruce Wayne
himself, rather than the Bat a subject thats never
been explored to any level of satisfaction in movies or
games. We often get images of ol Brucie staring at
the pale moonlight and the flashbacks in the Arkham
games were superb but Telltale promises to take us
deeper. Itll apparently look at the duality of his identity
ooh, deep and the struggle of saving a Gotham City
overrun with corruption and violence.
You can expect the usual Telltale blend of decision
and consequence a fascinating prospect for the
often-authoritarian world of Batman. Best of all, youll
have to switch between Bruce and Bats, depending on
the situation. Going to a gala ball? Your armour is a
tuxedo. This could be the ultimate examination of
Waynes complex psyche. Our only request? Please,
please dont call it Bruce Wayne: Beneath The Kevlar
Cowl, or something equally guff.

03 souTh Park: The


FracTured buT Whole

04 The WalkiNg dead


seasoN 3

05 lego sTar Wars:


The Force aWakeNs

everybody, if you can do


the Cartman

new game is only a matter


of corpse

BB-8 brick rolls onto Ps4

Pub Ubisoft dev Ubisoft San


Francisco eTa 2016

Pub Telltale Games dev Telltale


Games eTa 2016

The Stick Of Truth is one of the


best tie-in games. Ever. Wed be
happy with more of the same
assuming there were any fantasy
tropes left to mock yet The
Fractured But Whole is giving us
something different. Instead of
a Tolkien-esque trawl through
sphincters, the next South Park
title riffs off the undying popularity
of superhero movies.
Youll still be in control of the
no-longer-really-new New Kid,
this time teaming up with a cast
of wonderfully crap superheroes.
Cartman is The Coon half man,
half raccoon and Stan is
Toolshed, a hero with the power to
control, well, tools. The last game
worked because it was an
unapologetic turn-based RPG,
and the formula remains the
same here. The one area of
concern is the removal of
RPG-specialist Obsidian from
development, with Ubisoft San
Francisco stepping into the gap.

Telltale dabbles in everything from


Minecraft to Game Of Thrones, but
The Walking Dead remains its big
series. Season Two gave us
closure on many story elements,
but theres more to be said in
Telltales more-about-the-peoplethan-the-zombies narrative.
Season Three promises the
same branching stories, tough
choices and staggering selection
of endings, but Telltale CEO Kevin
Bruner promises it wont feel too
familiar fans can expect things
theyve never seen before. In fact,
its being refreshed to bring it to a
wider audience. This is partly to
tease in viewers of the TV show
who are unfamiliar with the games
belligerent mix of tough choices
and tougher consequences.
Apart from that, details are still
scarce. Were hoping Season
Three can return The Walking Dead
to the gruelling heights it reached
before the disappointing Michonne
spin-off. Rotting fingers crossed.

Pub Warner Bros


dev Traveller's Tales eTa 28 June
Star Wars remembered its sense
of humour for The Force Awakens,
so its the perfect fit for the
inevitable Lego spinoff. The brilliant
trailer, complete with a BB-8 on
board joke, was evidence enough.
The game expands on the
established Lego formula, including
tweaked building options that let
you construct different creations
with the same bricks, just like you
would in real life. Combat has also
been rejigged to include specific
blaster sections, which feature
cover shooting for the first time in
a Lego game. As ever, you can
expect the usual, whopping great
cast of Star Wars favourites,
including so-nice-we-wish-he-wasreal Poe Dameron and angsty
chinchilla Kylo Ren.
Best of all, the game covers the
period between Return Of The Jedi
and The Force Awakens, allowing
us to explore each characters
backstory and, more importantly,
finally discover what haircare
products Chewies been using.

When your squad is looking


fierce and ready to head
to the club, but you gotta
take out shredder first.

02

its a double delight from

05

tie-ins
TeaM Picks

The tie-ins wed love to see on Ps4

Ben Wilson
Weve had transformers.
Were getting turtles.
now its time for Platinum
to complete the 80s toon
hat-trick, and deliver us a thundercats
actioner. imagine the sword-swinging,
nunchaku-cracking four-way battles
against Hammerhand, Mumm-Ra and
greatest episode ever the inflamer.
or, if Platinum doesnt see gold, enter
telltale; theres loads of storylines to
tap into. the lion-o/Cheetara/tygra
love triangle. Jaga and Grunes on-off
bromance. Ma-Mutts daddy issues.
like Monkian, its a no-brainer.

Jen siMPkins

03

As oPMs resident
Japanophile, im hankering
after an obscure anime
tie-in. Here are five words
to get my engine revving for a racer
based on 2009 animated movie Redline
nsFW Wacky Races in space. All the
elements are there for a no-holdsbarred Ps4 wheel-spinner. the zany
tale of the Redline drag race; the neon
pulse of the art style; a soundtrack
making sexy jelly of your eardrums. And
imagine the power-ups. Racers turning
into robo-cars, firing boob-projectiles?
Move the hell over, Rocket league.

04

Ben tyReR
telltale, which has highly anticipated tie-ins of Batman and the Walking Dead season 3 hitting Ps4s in 2016.
oh this? Just the Millennium
Falcon in lego, screeching over
Jakkus deserts in lego star
Wars: the Force Awakens.

yes, the Wire videogame


would probably fly against
everything the series is
about. its tricky to
condense the systemic failings of the
war on drugs into something to literally
blast through in a weekend. But take
telltales narrative skills and let me fill
the shoes of Mcnulty and Bunk solving
crimes, trading thoughts and having a
dialogue wheel with only one word on it.
Well let you guess what it is. the two
po-lice are the most natural entry point
to avoid coming across as crass,
or duller than the Baltimore docks.

AnDReW
WestBRook
Ratchet? not for me. the
true furry platformer king
should be 80s cartoon
superhero Danger Mouse. Hes the
worlds greatest spy, a consummate
englishman and he wears an eyepatch.
He also packs a hilarious sidekick, an
inventive extended cast and brilliantly
diverse settings. His last proper tie-in
was on spectrum surely now, with the
recent tV reboot, its his time again? in
the words of the gushing singer on the
sublime soundtrack: Hes the greatest,
hes fantastic, hes the best. nuff said.

065

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10
[*probably]

Essential
Street
Fighter V
tips you definitely*
havent tried yet

068

ou may, if youve been playing


Street Fighter V, have met the
Wall of Bronze. Dont worry
if youve never heard of it
its the name weve just made
up for the point at which
specials and solid combos
no longer work online. The
basics can only take you so
far. Eventually, youll face an
imperious, scrub-killing M
Bison or a contemptible Vega
wholl use the very framework
of the game against you. Thats
when these tips come in handy.
Some of them are straightforward,
others will require practice and
research. All of them, however, will
make you become a more competitive
player. Learn well, young padawan,
and tell M Bison we sent you.

EXPERT bio
Matt Elliott fell in love with Street Fighter II in a
sticky Cromer arcade. Hes since resolved all
conflicts in his life by asking what would Guile
do? (The answer is almost always flash kick.)

Key
c. Crouching
s. Standing
f. Forward
b. Back
(e.g. f.MP =
forward medium
punch)

LP Light punch
MP Medium punch
HP Heavy punch
LK Light kick
MK Medium kick
HK Heavy kick

Harnessing Alex

New boy Alex is a spritely, energetic


grappler part Hulk Hogan, part
Macho Man Randy Savage. Hes got
great pokes his s.MK especially
so and his s.HK is a rangy Crush
Counter. His specials are a mixed
bag. His slash is a decent combo
finisher, but his jumping stomp is

pretty useless its unsafe on block,


and it doesnt cross-up. His stun gun
headbutt, however, is wonderful. You
can jump across the entire screen, it
cant be blocked and it does massive
amounts of stun. Alex has also got
the best dash of any Street Fighter V
grappler. Force your opponent to play

defensively using your pokes, then


nip in for your damaging command
throw. Finally, his Critical Art is
amazing it has a tidy, five-frame
start-up, and surprisingly good range.
Use it to counter-attack scrubby
Ryus who spam fireballs, and bury
their heads in the concrete. Lovely.

StrEEt FigHtEr V tipS

Mastering mix-ups

Okay, this is the bit in the training montage


when the music swells and it all starts making
sense. Mix-ups are about making your
opponent think youre going to do one thing,
then doing something different. It forces your
enemy to guess how youll attack, and lets you
play all sorts of devious mind games. Lets
use the meaty as an example. Hit it once or twice, and a smart
opponent will learn that they have to block on wake-up, not jab.
Move in after you knock them down and theyll be expecting the
same again. But you throw them. Knock them down again and
theyll be expecting another throw. So go back to the meaty. Its a
fundamental element of Street Fighter that can be applied across
your entire game. Fake your foe into guessing your next move,
and punish them. Congratulations: youre a cerebral assassin.

Weve got
you recovered

Now for some fundamentals. Street Fighter


V has three recovery options when youre
knocked down, and you need to know how
and when to use all of them. Hit down when
you land to perform a quick recovery, which
will have you quickly return to your feet, or
press back to hop backwards and put some
space between you and your opponent. The
third option is doing nothing, which will
perform a standard, slow recovery. Use them
all, and try to understand how your opponent
will pressure you.

Avoid stun using


V-Reversal

If youre taking heavy damage and


your stun gauge is filling up, use your
V-Reversal. It sounds obvious,
but few players use
it effectively. Many
V-Reversals
have lengthy animations that
give you time to completely
recover. Its the perfect opportunity
to get back in, but more importantly,
it doesnt leave you stunned and open
to a combo that could remove a
third of your health.

Serve up some meaties


Meaties are what will change your game the
quickest. We explain in tip #10 exactly how
frame data works, but whats important
for now is knowing that with meaties,
all that matters are the final active frames.
The plan is to attack your enemy as they get
up shhh, its not dishonourable timing
the active frames so they connect as late as
possible. Its best to use a medium attack
that opens a combo, or even better, a Crush
Counter. If they try to throw a jab on wakeup, your attack will connect at the same time
and beat it. Timing is crucial.

StrEEt FigHtEr V tipS


Hone your reactions
All of this stuff can be practised in Training
mode. You can set the dummy to attack with
a jab on wake-up, allowing you to nail the
timing for your Crush Counters. You can also
set guard recovery actions. Set up the dummy
so that it throws out a jab after blocking,
then hit it with a move that leaves you at an
advantage on block, before striking with a
medium attack. This is an excellent way of
learning how your frame traps work. Best of
all, you can mix your options, and practise
reacting to different scenarios. If you see a
human opponent repeatedly spamming the
same move effectively, use Training mode
to learn how to punish it.

Learn attack priorities

People often talk about Street Fighter


being the rock-paper-scissors of fists
a lazy way of describing it, perhaps,
but fundamentally correct. If two attacks
connect at the same time, Street Fighter V
has a system for deciding which one wins.
Generally, the more powerful the attack,
the better. So, if youre hit with a light
punch and you connect with a medium
kick, only the kick will cause damage. Likewise, heavy attacks
beat medium ones. The tradeoff is that weaker attacks are
usually quicker, and will connect before stronger ones. The
system only works when youre trading blows, so its all about
gaming that system, something well come back to in tip #10.

Crush candy
Again, this might seem like an obvious one,
but landing Crush Counters should be oh-sohigh on your list of offensive priorities. Every
character has at least two moves that act as
Crush Counters. Make sure that you learn
em. Yep, all of em. Most importantly, also
practise how to follow them up to really take
full advantage. Mika, for example, has to dash
in after landing her dropkick. Its unintuitive,
but the massive rewards make it well worth
practising. Also, learn to land Crush Counters
with your meaty attacks remember what
we said in point #4? and punish whiffed
moves such as Dragon Punches.

Owning wake-up
A word of caution about the meaties
mentioned earlier: these are risky against
characters with invincible attacks such
as Dragon Punches. Yet you can spin this
knowledge to your advantage. Use mix-ups
and pressure to bait out Dragon Punches on
wake-up, block instead of attacking, then
punish. If your opponent doesnt have any
decent wake-up specials, even better news:
R Mika, Karin, M Bison, Laura, Zangief and
Nash are super-easy to punish on wake-up.
Keep on them, forcing them to waste meter
on EX versions of their specials.

071

Study the frame


data no, really
Having established
how Street Fighter Vs
roshambo-fu works (#8),
you need to start using it.
Frame data is essentially
what happens when
maths meets martial
arts wait, no, come back!
Its less terrible than it
sounds. Every move has a
number of start-up frames.
This is how long it takes
you to chuck out an attack.
Theres also specific data for what
happens when a move is blocked, and
when it connects. So, if a move has a seven-frame
advantage on hit, you can link it to any other move
that has a start-up of seven frames or less. Make
sense? That info alone wont change your game, but
frame traps will. Find out which attacks leave you at
an advantage on block, then follow them with moves
that beat your rivals counter-attack. For example,
Chunners s.MP leaves her at a +3 frame advantage
on block. Follow it up with her five-frame b.HP and
youll frame trap (and Crush Counter) anyone who
tries to counter-attack with a three-frame jab. You
can get all the frame data in the excellent (and free)
V-Frames app for Android and iPhone.

When we said no guns, we knew that


we wanted to make Faith a projectile.
She needed to be the weapon.

Interactive iPad edition also available

Discover the story behind the new


Mirrors Edge in issue 293, on sale now.
Try two free issues of the iPad edition
today search Edge in the App Store
You will receive two free issues (the current issue and the next issue) when you
start a no-obligation trial subscription to Edges iPad edition. Available to new
subscribers only. iPad is a trademark of Apple Inc, registered in the US
and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc.

OPM scOres

Gold
award
gOld award

awarded to a game thats


brilliantly executed on every
level, combining significant
innovation, near-flawless
gameplay, great graphics
and lasting appeal.

editors
award
editOrs award

not at the very highest


echelon, but this is a game
that deserves recognition
and special praise based on
its ambition, innovation or
other notable achievement.

10
incredible
the kind of phenomenal
experience rarely seen in
a console generation.

9
Outstanding
unreservedly brilliant this

should be in every collection.

8
Very gOOd
a truly excellent game, marred
by just a few minor issues.

7
gOOd
a great concept unfulfilled or

the familiar done well, but still


well worth playing.

6
decent
fun in parts, flawed in others,
but more right than wrong.

80 dark
sOuls iii

its series finale time for froms


patience-sapping rpg, but is it
any good? we show no mercy

5
aVerage
what you expect and little

more, this is for devotees only.

4
belOw aVerage
any bright ideas are drowning
in a sea of bugs or mediocrity.

3
POOr
a seriously flawed game with
little merit on any level.

2
awful
disgraceful: the disc would be
more beneficial as a coaster.

1
HOrrific
own this and youll be swiftly,

justifiably, exiled from society.

contents
uncharted 4: a thiefs end 74 | uefa euro 2016 84 | trackmania turbo 85
enter the gungeon 86 | ratchet & clank 88 | minecraft story mode 92
severed 93 | rpublique 94 | stikbold 94 | unepic 94 | mlb: the show 16 95

073

review

Gold
award
glory huNtEr

@bentyrer

uNchartED
4: a thiEFs
END
PS4s new gold standard

074

info
Format PS4
Eta Out NOw
PuB SONy
DEv Naughty DOg

ouve worked this out already


by glancing at that score, but
heres written confirmation.
The wait has been more than
worth it. Nathan Drakes final
journey is the one that Sonys
greatest action hero deserves.
Uncharted 4 has sections,
and set-pieces, that need to be played to be
believed. It looks phenomenal. It delivers you
back into a world, and storyline, that you never
want to leave. It is, without question, the best
game in the series and PlayStation 4s finest
hour so far.
Drake rocking it cosmetically in his bonafide
current-gen debut is hardly a surprise, but it
merits praise, regardless. Screen-grabbers will
mash the Share button relentlessly, as a feast
of incredible vistas and obscenely well-crafted
details makes Uncharted 4 the best-looking
game on any console. Character models and facial
animations are pretty much flawless, sailing over
the uncanny valley as a whole host of smirks,
eyebrow raises and furrowed brows translate to
the most natural looking of performances.

NEvEr too NatE

Ill try not to drop spoilers, but the story requires


discussion at least. With Nate happy(ish) in
his new very legal job of hauling marine
wreckage, he gets a visit from the ghost of older
brother past. Sam Drake, who shares the same

a feaSt Of iNcreDible viStaS


makeS uNcharteD 4 the beStlOOkiNg game ON aNy cONSOle.

075

Dont look so confused


Drake, thats definitely
a 10 were slapping on
your series finale.

review

above Henry Averys a pirate king, is it any


surprise hes left behind some wreckage?

076

Drakes new job as a


clock repairman doesnt
seem to be going to plan.

above left
Remember the E3
car chase demo?
Its astonishing.
above right Good
news: your AI
buddies are handy
with a piece.
left Theres
still nothing as
satisfying as a
one-punch finish.
right Sam Drake
is charmingly
headstrong and
just as likeable
as his lil brother.

review
roguish glint in the eye, but is sporting some
intriguing tats and appears a little more wizened
from wasted years, comes back to ask his little
brother for help. From there, the Brothers Drake
resume their lifelong race for the vast reams
of treasure that belonged to Pirate King Henry
Avery against the smarmy Rafe Adler.

raFE to thE FiNish

Thats purposefully as vague as possible. Not


only due to my spoilers caveat, but also because
A Thiefs End adds enough elements to its story
formula to bubble in a different way. Gone is
the rat-a-tat-tat pacing of Among Thieves and
Drakes Deception, in which the story scarcely
lets you breathe. This entry is more self-assured
in the ebb and flow of quiet exploration, allowing
its leads to make their impression before building
to those standout set-pieces. Following The Last
Of Us, Naughty Dog is clearly high on confidence,
and does a superb job of
enhancing Uncharteds charm.
Not that youre chucked
in at the deep end. Theres a
deft touch to the opening few
chapters that keeps the action
light, the scope tight, and
uses its linearity to build to
whats coming later. One such
chapter merely explores where
Drake and Elena are in their lives its not only
vital to A Thiefs End, but joyously mundane in
a way that previous entries didnt dare try to be.
The opening hour eases you through the small
beginnings until you meet that long lost brother.
Sam is certainly cut from the same cloth as his
sibling when theyre together, theres an easy
rapport between the two as they trade quips and
chuckle their way through scrapes and scraps
that perfectly demonstrate why Nate is so willing
to join him for one final adventure.
Too often in games, a previously unheard-of
family member is introduced to a story, with an
expectation that youll automatically care about
them. Thats not the case with Sam, who is just
as important to this adventure as Nate, without
being a carbon copy. This adds a fascinating
dynamic to the family unit Nates made in
the years he thought his older brother had
shuffled off the mortal coil. It also shouldnt
come as any great shock, but Nolan
North and Troy Baker turn in career-best
performances, riffing off each other as if
real-life siblings.
Similarly, Uncharted 4 also boasts the
series most fascinating villains. While Rafes
rich-boy-gone-wrong hits all the moustachetwirling beats, its partner Nadine who impresses
the most, with her love of smacking both Drakes
around, and cold disdain for anything that isnt
money or ageing heartthrob Victor Sullivan.
Even the Shoreline cannon fodder she
commands are fun company, sporting the best
South African accents since Lethal Weapon 2s
diplomatic immunity. You never tire of em.
The reason, however, that this is the best
Uncharted story is that while the franchises
charm and light touch remains, it also veers
into what makes Nate tick in a way previous
entries didnt. For the first time, this is a Drake
with real, ugly flaws, and A Thiefs End doesnt
let him off with a shrug and wink. This isnt

glib moodiness for the sake of


it. Theres an uncomfortable
familiarity to some of his
interactions later on that
speak to Naughty Dogs evermaturing writing style. In
short, hes occasionally an
arsehole and all the more
human (and therefore richer
as a character) because of it.
That evolving style can also
be seen in a different way with
the expansive approach to level
design. As you progress, the
game seems to get bigger and
bigger, each level branching
off in different paths that
always guide you to the same
place. This time you really feel
like an explorer, probing the
Madagascan
savannah,
frosty caves
or tropical
islands, each
level boasting
a sense
of scale
that never
overwhelms
but feels grander than whats
come before. As a result, little
secrets feel that much more
rewarding most come by
tearing yourself off the beaten
track, rather than stumbling
across them.
Exploring and clambering
has never been more enjoyable,
either. While the driving
sections are essentially a way
to make the larger levels easier
to get across and provide the
basis for one of Uncharted
4s standout moments, they
are also decent in their own
right, with a strong amount of
skidding potential from tapping
the handbrake, and a welcome
inability to wreck vehicles.

bOth NOlaN NOrth


aND trOy baker
turN iN career-beSt
PerfOrmaNceS.
Below Sexy,
swoon-worthy
Nate is back
in full force.
In another life,
he would be a
perfume model.

graPPlE hookED

Most fun of all in terms of


traversal mechanics is the
grappling hook. As vital to this
Uncharted as crafting is to The
Last Of Us, the metal claw of
awesome adds an extra layer
of butt-clenching terror as you
line up jumps, then prepare to
smash o to chuck it out.
It mixes up the climbing
by affording you more control
of Drake, and injects an extra
touch of pace into scaling
cliff faces. Even in the actionheavier sequences, theres a
special joy in using it as get
out of jail free card, allowing
you to stay one step ahead of
the messes you create while
firing off your gun.

Thankfully, Nate hasnt


become a pacifist between
entries, and Naughty Dog
doesnt tinker with the bulletplay too significantly. Aiming
is a tad quicker than in past
outings you can always mess
around with the sensitivity as
well and guns pack more of
a visual punch, with enemies
staggering and cover crumbling
much more frequently.
Fisticuffs remain similar,
but deliver more contextual
actions with your gang or the
environment our favourite
being when Drake grabs an
ally and swings them into a
Shoreline fool. It amounts to
a sweet blend of the familiar
and the fresh with regards to
slinging your knuckles about.
While shooting and
scrapping is similar, the
architecture of fights has
undergone a quietly radical
rehaul between Drakes
Deception and A Thiefs End.
Each conflict starts with Drake
in stealth mode, from where he
can tag enemies to keep track
of them wandering around
using alert phases. White
means theyre looking at you,
yellow that theyre investigating
and orange is, er, not good,
as theyre going to start firing.
While stealth is a constant
in the series, this refocusing
enables more freedom than
past entries cover-based antics.

shorE thiNgs

An early firefight in the ruins


of a graveyard quickly shows
how this approach improves
the combat. After using more
dynamite than is advisable,
a squad of Shoreline mercs
decides to check out the
explosion. As Drake crouches
in the long grass, you can/
should tag enemies to follow
their movements, but are left to
tackle them however you like.
Cracking a few necks quietly
is always the best option,
with going loud usually being
a last resort, as enemies are
quite happy to suck up more
ammo this time if you miss
their faces. I take one out who
wanders near my crouching
position, before moving over
to some ruins to get a height
advantage and tagging the
remaining suckers.
Hang on, maybe I shouldnt
be peeking out so much, as a
guard is now investigating. Not
to fret. I inch along the wall
Drake is clinging to, and drop

077

078

right Theres
a return to the
lush greens
of Drakes
Fortune, but
its even more
gorgeous now.

left Hope
youve got some
Daz back at the
hotel, Drake.
Those stains
are as stubborn
as your brother.

on him, Drakes flying punch my new favourite


finisher. With only a handful of mercs left, I
unholster the Para. 45 and get ready to dish out
some delicious lead suppers. Its by no means
the most sophisticated stealth system, but a
satisfyingly meaty upgrade on the smaller-scale
shootouts of its past. Plus it makes sense for
Drakes scrappier style as a fighter, its simplicity
combining well with the multi-level arenas to
create more natural shootouts.
Unfortunately, this openness sometimes works
against you. Plan A can disappear out of the
window pretty quickly, at which point going back
into stealth requires you to climb up or down a
structure, while avoiding the gang of goons who
are pumping death at you. Its not uncommon to
get caught out by a flanking enemy fair play
to the AI this time, as its much more intelligent,
quickly trying to surround you creating an
unmanageable, chaotic mess. These sections
sing when you control the fights, swinging
and sneaking through waves, or engineering a
situation where you rain death and destruction

thOSe SPecial Set-PieceS


are NOw SurrOuNDeD by
aN aDveNture aS StrONg.

with a squeeze of the trigger


just wait until you discover
the thunderous ARX-120. But
it can all become unwieldy a
little too quickly, and getting
caught in a maelstrom of pain
frustrates. Mercifully, its not
a regular occurence.

sEt-PiEcE oF DrakE

Where youre all too happy to


be caught in the eye of a bodyshattering storm is within
the game-defining, and now
series-defining, moments
set-pieces in which the camera
swirls around Drake as he finds
himself falling into and/or
sprinting away from engulfing
danger. While Uncharted 2 and
3 defined themselves on these
spectacular scenes, A Thiefs
End doesnt rely on them as
liberally, instead utilising them
where absolutely necessary
and, therefore, to astonishing
effect. Such scarcity makes
them all the more special.
There are elements of these
grandiose game-stoppers that

pay homage to the past in


subtle (and not so subtle) ways.
But Naughty Dog remains
the master of ensuring you
have enough control to feel
like youre not just a passive
spectator. Youre guiding his
tumble back to the ground,
clawing and gripping on
anything that comes to hand,
or improvising a way to
stupidly swing back into the
fray. That amazing disbelief you
had when hanging off the plane
in Drakes Deception or fleeing
a helicopter in Uncharted 2 is
here. Its just that now, those
scenes are surrounded by an
adventure thats just as strong.
While A Thiefs End gets
so much right, its also not
without nitpicks. The optional
conversation prompts are
bizarrely rare and hardly
crop up later in the story.
Theyre inoffensive and
add a little personality to
some interactions, but just
have minimal impact on the
experience overall kinda

review
the opm breakdown
w h at y o u d o i n u n c h a r t e d 4

24% checking
amazon for
real-life grapple
hook prices.
9% flicking

through the
journal to find
all the jokes.

1% Okay, youll

know what is
when you see it,
but i wont spoil
the surprise.

above Heres an
aerial takedown
in its full glory.
Even the
punch-ee looks
impressed.

14% Staring
slavishly at the
clouds of smoke
that plume away
from explosions.

36%

Pausing the
game to catch
your breath after
another
set-piece.

16% bellowing
as much as Nate
when you miss
the pesky merc
who flanks and
ends you.

m u lt i p l ay e r
well have a full review
once were on the
servers, but recent
beta play offers hope.
fantastic level design
and pacey action keeps
deathmatches fresh,
while goofy power-ups
are surprisingly
well-balanced. lots to
look forward to, then.

right Seriously,
Uncharted 4 is
a screenshot
treasure trove.

s tat pa c k

13 23 36 48

PErFEct trEasurE

The niggles and frustrations


matter little when Nates
fourth outing has you rocking
on the sofa without even
realising it. Uncharted 4 may

yes

yes

PS4s last visual


champion is blown
away by Drakes
stubbled chops
and curled grin.

Sure, you get three


uncharteds in the
collection, but none
of them reach
these heights.

Super close, but its a


touch more enjoyable
spending time with
the cast of a thiefs
end than Joel and ellie.

a Bl
PP

Na

NcE

ivE Dis

so

ow
o

N
EP

u Ns t

lE

trophy cabinet

r at

Naughty Dogs victory lap


is a celebration of its past,
present and future, with clever
pacing and thrilling set-pieces
surpassing expectations in its
most exhilarating uncharted to
date. No PS4 should be without
this. buy. it. Now. Ben tyrer

yes

ar

verdict

is it better than?

shh s

be an epilogue in comparison
to the PS3 trilogy, but it will
be remembered as the series
definitive game. Everything
the series does well, A Thiefs
End improves on. Everything
it introduces, it does so
comfortably and confidently.
While its the adventures
quietest and most surprising
moments that youll rush to
talk about once the screen
fades, it shouldnt detract
from the peerless set-pieces,
fantastic writing and propulsive
action that it conjures up.
Alright, Im not going to lie,
this is pretty awesome, Drake
grins to himself, early on in A
Thiefs End. Hes not wrong.

Total number
of journal notes
and journal
entries that
are waiting
to be found.

like speed dating. Similarly


the Piton, the climbing spike
that allows Drake to make his
own hand-holds on some cliff
faces, arrives late in the day
and doesnt change the feel
of climbing in the way the
grappling hook does.
Also, as the final chapter
of the overall series and
again, Im writing this while
trying to give away as little as
possible its a slight shame
that it ends fairly unevenly. The
last in-game chapter rushes
itself, leaving a slight deflation
to what is otherwise a near
flawless story. It pulls itself
back, however, with a coda
that sums up what makes this
series so special. Ultimately, its
possibly my favourite ending to
any Naughty Dog game.

Fancy a natter?
Youll find this
many optional
conversations
throughout
the story.

bronze

youre a regular Solid


Snate, stealth taking
down at least 30
enemies. Dont
forget to tag em.

silver

forget the treasure


hunting, youre also a
killing machine, taking
out 100 enemies in a
row without dying.

lu Do

above The Brothers Drake, who love their bikes almost as much as each other.

Number of hours Chapters that


you can expect
youll need to
to be spending
shoot and
with Nate before stealth through
discovering
to see how this
his final fate.
thief ends.

Gold

everyones favourite
uncharted criticism
gets its own shout
out, if you manage
to off 1,000 foes.

079

Combat demands careful


attention to attack
patterns and your
characters limitations.

080

EvEn a low-lEvEl foE can bE


your doom, thanks to a hugE
array of tricks and tactics.

review

DIe harDer

Dark
SoulS III

@dirigiblebill

Merciless climax to gamings


greatest action-RPG series

info
Format Ps4
eta out now
PuB bandai namco
Dev from
softwarE

fter the filth of Irithyll jail,


the radiance and space of
Archdragon Peak can be
overwhelming, like being
shown an aeroplane window
after having your head
shoved down the cabin
toilet. The prison is a place
of stealth and terror. Its patrolled by cowled
women clutching red-hot brands, twisted
exiles from the Profaned Capital who can
sear away your health bar with a stare.
But Archdragon Peak? Its all hazy blue skies
and serene marble cliffs. What could possibly
go wrong here? Stepping away from a bonfire
checkpoint, we take a moment to drink in the
beauty of a tumbledown fortress wall. Then,
a dinosaur in a dressing gown drops off a
platform and flattens us with an enormous axe.

knIght watch

The Souls games are built around such hilarious,


maddening reversals, and few things are as
satisfying as clocking an ambush and working
out how to thwart it. But after four instalments,
the old bait-and-switch routine is becoming
a little too predictable. Spotted a knight facing
the other way? Check the rafters for archers
before moving in. Glowing trinket down the hall?
Keep an eye peeled for corpses gripping weapons.
The air of over-familiarity applies to more
than just enemy distribution. Dark Souls III
is, as expected, a brilliant and sophisticated
epic, combining the best melee combat in the
business with decadent, tortuous environments
and expertly crafted bosses. But its a work of
consolidation rather than change, marshalling
systems and lore from across the series into
what is, at times, the definitive Dark Souls,
while adding little that feels genuinely fresh.
The setting is another kingdom whose rulers
have been corrupted by power and forbidden

081

Fast travel between bonfire


checkpoints is now available
from the off. But you still
have to activate them first

082

right Top
tip for tough
sword-wielding
bosses: roll
towards them.

left Even the


books want a
piece of you.
Take care not
to get cursed.

knowledge. Your task, as a resurrected but cursed


warrior, is to bring them to heel by straight-up
murdering everybody and offering their remnants
at this games Firelink Shrine. The latter is more
of a distinct customisation hub than in the
original Dark Souls. Its home to a Firekeeper
who boosts your stats in return for harvested
souls, a blacksmith who takes care of weapon
upgrades, and a selection of oddball personalities
who must first be rescued from the world. All
these characters are on personal journeys, and
you need to pay close attention to the dialogue
if you want to explore their stories to the end.

ShaDow Play

Structurally, Dark Souls III falls between the


entwined geography of Dark Souls essentially
a colossal tower with routes woven around and
through it and the looser, less engaging layout
of Dark Souls II. Having fast-travel between
bonfire checkpoints available straight away
threatens to make progress feel choppy, but you
still have to reach those bonfires to activate them.

wEaPons rangE from


thundEring grEatswords
to barbEd gauntlEts.

You can also, as in the first


game, see most major locations
clearly from a distance a
forest lurking beneath a ruined
bridge, or a frosty citadel
rearing against the Moon
which creates a sense of global
coherence even Bethesda could
learn from. Individual areas
can be quite linear, but theres
always plenty to discover
illusory walls, smashable
objects that mask shortcuts or
discreetly jutting beams that
offer hidden routes to items.
Covering ground is tough,
so stumbling upon, say, an
elevator that links a buildings
threshold to its highest tower
is often as elating as beating a
boss. Just dont get too carried
away. Even a low-level foe can
be your doom, thanks to a huge
array of tricks and tactics per
enemy type, and death bites
harder than in most games,
with all your accumulated souls
dropped in a puddle by your
corpse. Fail to reclaim them,
and theyre gone forever.

Combat is faster and angrier,


a mixture of Bloodbornes
cat-footed manoeuvring and
classic Souls defensive play.
It revolves, as ever, around
a stamina bar thats drained
by attacking, blocking and
dodging. Exhaust it and the
next hit sends you reeling.
Weapons which range from
thundering greatswords and
poisoned spears to whips and
barbed gauntlets now have
category-specific skills such as
fiery groundpounds or guardbreakers that can turn a losing
fight in your favour.

tough love

The skills system isnt a


dramatic alteration, but its
another welcome layer of
complexity, particularly when
it comes to competitive
multiplayer, which once again
sees you invading another
players session using certain
items. You can also form
covenants with NPCs. These
shape the multiplayer options

review
the opm breakdown
w h at y o u d o i n d a r k S o u l S i i i

10% creeping
around corners
or through doors,
shield firmly up.

25%

16% failing
to roll under
an enormous
blade or blast of
malignant sorcery.

Sadly contemplating
something ghastly
that is about
to absolutely
destroy you.

14% clapping
your hands as you
discover a secret
or shortcut.

above There
are dozens of
weapons and
spells, some
familiar from
the original.

16% deciding
which weapon to
reinforce, which
stat to raise or
spell to buy.
19% scraping
through
encounters
by way of
surgical blocks
and dodges.

Second opinion SoulS Survivor

Utterly magnetic, the series finale fuses the


first Souls labyrinthine environments and
defensive play with the melee savagery of
Bloodborne to all-consuming effect. Im playing other
games in a daze, visions of boss fights dancing in my
head. Innovation is lacking, but does it matter? Id trade
actual souls for just one... more... try... Jen Simpkins

right The
landscapes
and backdrops
are stupefying.
So, at times, is
the framerate.

the firSt five hourS


1

083

above Pure magic users may struggle, but adding a sword works wonders.

available followers of Farron,


for example, are automatically
summoned to assail players
who enter his domain, while
Blue Sentinels are conjured
to help those under attack by
pesky Red Phantoms. Where
previous games required you
to recover your characters
Humanity, the online here is
governed by access to Embers
rare items you can crush for
a health boost and in order to
match-make, but which also
expose you to invasion. Its a
streamlining of the Humanity
system that asks the same
overall question is having
a friend to hand worth the
hostility you might attract?
Bosses are where you need
your friends most. Dark Souls
III musters some incredible
specimens a collective of
undead hunters who are as
happy to kill each other as the
player; a forlorn demon king
waiting on the shores of a
volcanic lake; a possessed tree
in the process of giving birth to

something worse. All represent


a formidable challenge, though
none are a match for the best
bosses of the original game.
Still, coming second to the
first Dark Souls is nothing
to be ashamed of, and Dark
Souls III hardly puts a foot
wrong otherwise. The only
significant scratch in the
polish is the performance, with
framerates sagging noticeably
during crowded skirmishes,
and texture pop-in a factor
throughout. But the lure of
those dizzying encounters
and vistas amply exceeds any
annoyance about the engine.
This isnt quite a stunning
rebirth for the series on
PS4, but its undoubtedly
a magnificent end.

1 cobble together a vaguely human-looking Pyromancer. froms face


editor would make a wrestling game feel ill. 2 Pull a sword out of a
dude who immediately murders us. samaritans die hardest. 3 were
in lothric castle. here be dragons. handily, you can trick them into
blasting other enemies. 4 time for another boss. this one likes to
vomit glaciers. 5 below the castle, an undead village festers.
compel-o-gr aph
Hey, halberds
hurt.

Oh no, archers.
Wow,
secret area?

To me, white
phantom!

Endgame
jitters.

TimE

60 hours

iS it better than?

verdict

dark souls iii rarely innovates,


but it experiments within the
souls parameters to grotesque
and glorious effect. another
game of the year contender,
then. edwin evans-thirlwell

no

yeS

no

the world of lothric


isnt as cunningly
woven or enigmatic as
lordran and feels
slightly over-familiar.

dsiii restores that


sense of organically
unfolding geography
that was lost in
dsiis drangleic.

froms first Ps4


game offers more
glamour, more balletic
combat and some
series-best locations.

review
Squads feel outdated.
The Ox as a starter?
Really, PES? Really?!

Woy zoNE

084

@mcmeiks

uEFa Euro 2016

Fab footy outscores lamentable licensing just

info
Format PS4
aLSo oN PS3
Eta Out NOw
Pub KONami
DEv PES
PrOductiONS

eath. Taxes. England screwing up


any chance of international glory
via penalty spot misery. These are
the unequivocal certainties of our
existence on this spinning rock. Oh, and
while were sharing an existential moment
together, you better pop PES Productions
making great football games with dreadfully
drab presentation onto that list. No matter
how good the on-field action, the developer
can never quite cook up that special sauce to
slather onto its juicy soccer steak.

And thats the case here. Euro 2016s take on the


rapidly approaching French footy spectacle lacks
va-va-voom, while its patchy licensing makes
it feel like FIFAs unloved twin. Thats a damn
shame, because when PES and its new tourney
step onto the field, theyre a lethal front two.
First, lets clear up some details. Konami has
released both digital and PlayStation-exclusive
boxed editions of Euro 2016, with each version
also containing full-fat PES 2016. So far, so
generous. Even better, existing PES owners get
it added free through Marchs Data Pack 3.00
update. Said gratis DLC also sprinkles in 199 new

Patchy licENSiNg mEaNS


ONly 15 Of thE 24 SidES arE
trEatEd tO PrOPEr KitS.

player faces, fresh transfers,


new boots (woo!) and Euros
final venue the Stade de France.
The business model may be
commendable, but Euro 2016
is sadly every inch the quickly
trotted out expansion. I hope
youre hungry, because its time
to open wide for some no-frills
football. EAs full price Euro and
World Cup games may have
been cynical, but at least they
always felt like a celebration
of their tournaments. Here,
competing for the Delaunay
Cup is accompanied by all the
fanfare of dropping a Bovril
into your lap.

Kit haPPENS

Forget about licensed managers


prowling their technical areas;
Euro 2016 doesnt even include
all 24 of the finals licensed
sides. Only 15 teams are treated
to their proper kits, meaning
nine nations including
Ireland, Belgium, Sweden
and Switzerland all draw
that unlucky chamber in PES
continued game of Russian
roulette. Oh, and the Ruskies
dont get their strip either.

Though nine teams must put


up with generic clobber, at least
they all get real player names,
with the majority sporting
the series always spot-on
likenesses. Yet with only one
licensed stadium, dreary menus
and low quality FMV intros,
the tournament can come
across as an afterthought.
There is a saving grace,
and its a big one this is a
fundamentally brilliant football
game. Add the Euros to PES
2016s already title-winning
squad and the overall package is
a bonafide winner. Its passing
matches FIFA blow for blow,
while sharper slide tackles and
crisper shooting mean games
are punchier than EAs soccer
juggernaut. A sublime on-pitch
effort then, but next time,
Konami really needs to learn
how to season that steak.
verdict

the quality of the footy secures


Euro 2016 a big score, but
presentation and licensing
issues see Konami very nearly
make a hash of an open goal.
Dave meikleham

review

Par times are represented


as ghost drivers, which
offer a glimpse of the
quickest racing lines.
manic strEEt scrEEchErs

@jamesnouch

trackmania turbo

085

Highway to the danger zone

info
Format PS4
Eta Out nOw
Pub ubiSOft
DEv nadeO

eed For Speeds plenty fast, Burnouts


pretty nippy and Driveclub moves
at a fair old clip, but Nadeos latest
leaves these motoring celebs looking
positively pedestrian. Here, you might start a
level suspended from a crane, freefalling 200m
for a running start, before drifting into a tight
hairpin bend. Youve barely straightened up
before you hit a boost, sending you careening
off a ramp at 500km per hour

Trackmania is essentially a crazed, colourful and


terrifically quick rollercoaster a celebration
of unbridled speed thats festooned with barmy
loop-the-loops and stupefying stunt jumps.
To that end, its single-player campaign boasts
an impressive assortment of impossible track
designs, charting insane corkscrews and longdistance leaps in a Trials-style time-attack
against a variety of spectacular backdrops.
The main campaign mode hosts a generous
200 stages, but thats not all. Its accompanied
by a host of multiplayer modes, playable in a
variety of online, split-screen and pass-the-pad
configurations. And then theres the powerful
course creation toolkit, which even empowers

crazed and cOlOurful,


itS feStOOned with
StuPefying Stunt jumPS.

unimaginative dullards like


us to whip up some swiveleyed nuttiness, thanks to an
interface that emphasises
user-friendly automation
over esoteric tinkering.

racE against timE

But theres also a serious


side, a side thats all precision
stopwatches and strict
accounting the goal of each
single-player stage is to beat
the devs punishing par times,
often while avoiding any
number of trackside obstacles
that could torpedo your
promising run. This exacting
edge creates moments of holdyour-breath tension as bracing
as any horror scare. When
youre pushing your vehicle to
the edge in pursuit of a licketysplit lap-time, you exist in the
exhilaratingly narrow space
between triumph and disaster.
Successfully thread your way
through all of these perilous
impediments and youre
awarded with a shiny medal. A
bronze, naturally, is the digital
equivalent of a humiliating
slap in the face a bitter

booby prize for a race hard


run. But a gold, meanwhile, is
a precious testament to your
racing panache, and the sense
of accomplishment evoked is
only heightened by the stiff
challenge on offer in some of
Trackmanias trickiest tracks.
Theres a fine line between a
stiff challenge and a punishing
slog, however, and Trackmanias
courses do, at times, present
one cruel twist too many.
At its worst, it can feel as
though Nadeos designers are
personally trolling you, placing
mean-spirited hurdles in the
perfect place to scupper your
efforts. But even the odd
spiteful stage cant dull the
boisterous appeal, and for every
frustrated ragequit it inspires,
theres an hour or more of big
dumb grins in this flamboyant
bundle of unabashed fun.
verdict

a princely suite of tracks,


modes and features all wrapped
up in a colourfully boisterous
package. its fast, frenetic and
occasionally just a bit bloody
frustrating. James nouch

review

Theres lots of delightful


detail in the art, adding
to the pleasure of
making a big old mess.
ShotS FirED

086

@schillingc

EntEr thE GunGEon

Another arsenal that doesnt quite stay the distance

info
Format PS4
Eta Out nOw
Pub DevOlver
Digital
DEv DODge rOll

heres been quite a bit of hand


wringing about the games industrys
preoccupation with ordnance lately,
to the point where many games often
invite us to question our fondness for digital
destruction. So it makes a refreshing change
to see a developer unashamedly embracing the
way of the gun. Dodge Rolls sparky twin-stick
dungeon crawler is the kind of game in which
even the bullets shoot bullets.
Just about everything you face is either gun
or ammo-shaped. If not, its usually holding
an unfeasibly large weapon or spitting out
projectiles. With the randomly generated floors
throwing out narrow walkways, disappearing
platforms, spike pits and more, staying out of
harms way is no easy task. Happily, youve
got two secret weapons to call upon: theres an
evasive roll that gives you a brief window of
invincibility, and blank rounds that act as smart
bombs, destroying every projectile on screen.
The controls can feel lethargic, though you
quickly realise they suit the tempo of the combat.
As busy and frantic as it looks, its unwise to
charge into the fray all guns blazing, not least

the gunS fire bOuncing


SawblaDeS, tentacleS
anD hOming SkullS.

since whichever dungeoneer


you pick, your starter gun is
a piffling pea-shooter. With
death taking you back to the
entrance and heart pieces
proving scarce, health is an
even more precious resource
than ammo. You need to find
cover wherever possible, which
can involve upending tables
for short-lived protection. A
collectible that leaves enemies
stunned by your furniture
flipping prowess is a godsend.

bullEt ballEt

You expect a challenge from a


game like this, and Enter The
Gungeon doesnt disappoint.
From a musclebound bird
toting a minigun, to a Gorgon
wielding twin-SMGs, the
bosses are a real highlight,
falling just on the right side
of the fun/frustrating divide.
You might face them a few
times before weaving through
their bullet patterns without
taking a hit, but patient play
is rewarded. The arenas also
give you more room, with
regular enemies killing me
more frequently than bosses.

For a while, you discover


something new on every
descent. A shopkeeper doubles
his prices if you refuse to
stop shooting inside his store.
Release two prisoners and,
for a small fee, they leave a
wider range of weaponry in the
dungeons unlockable chests
on subsequent runs. But minor
irritations start to rack up.
While its fun to move
from derringers and magnums
to guns that fire bouncing
sawblades, tentacles and
homing skulls, theres not
enough meaningful variety.
The randomness can grate,
leaving you facing a boss with
your starter weapon, or having
an enemy at the entrance of
a room taking your last sliver
of health. Thats the risk with
guns, we guess eventually,
you shoot yourself in the foot.
verdict

if not quite the diamond


bullet through the forehead it
threatens to be, this enjoyably
challenging shooter roguelike
is a reminder that run and gun
equals fun. Chris Schilling

review
info

Format PS4 Eta Out nOw


Pub PQube DEv MileStOne

info

Format PS4 Eta Out nOw


Pub MARvelOuS GAMeS DEv eXAMu

mXGP2

Nitro+ blaStErz

this motocrosses the line

Hope youve got breakdown cover

etting a chase cam right is a fine art.


every dev should look to Driveclub
as an example: an implementation
so good we even occasionally abandon the
in-car view to enjoy it. but if evolutions take
is a high-water mark, Milestones is the
cracked riverbed below. Rigidly locked to the
back of the bike, it emphasises both MXGPs
jittery handling and shaky framerate. Any
nuance afforded by an admirably detailed
control scheme is lost in a mess of juddering
camera shifts and misjudged corners.
theres a first-person option, too, but
that comes at the cost of placing you closer
to the ugly brown textures that carpet
MXGP2s rather lifeless looking world.1
there are some impressive draw distances
to take in across the 18 officially licensed
tracks, admittedly, but this remains an
astonishingly ugly game considering it has
no PS3 albatross version to blame things on.
exactly what is on the screen to justify its
agonisingly long loading times is beyond us.
the custom career and free-ride options
on offer are flanked by a variety of official
events, not to mention a full 2015 rider
roster and broad selection of 250cc and
450cc bikes,2 but despite the confusingly
busy list of options, theres little to
distinguish the various events other than
their titles. the same is true of the three
physics models on offer, which all inspire a
similar level of indifference as bikes fail to do
what you expect or communicate anything of
their heft or the different track surfaces.
Given the obvious effort that has gone into
providing a generous package
for fans of the sport, its a
minor tragedy that there are
so many false starts within.
ben maxwell

FootNotES 1 this introduces realistic starts, with lights replaced


by a badly rendered woman holding a sign. 2 the selection of bikes
and riders on offer is vast, with myriad customisation options.

n first glance at this 2D anime


fanservice fighter, youd be forgiven
for seeing nothing but niche theres
a particularly cavernous one between the
prominent breasts of box-art bombshell
Super Sonico. if youre into a little titillation
with your brawlers, its cute. if youve got
niggles about jiggles, its offputting.1 but
beyond all the heaving cleavage is accessible
arse-kicking and hidden depth, too.
Sonico is a zoning character, calling upon
her J-pop bandmates to beat up opponents
while her anti-socially extensive collection
of cats cavorts about her person. Grapplehappy Muramasas more technical and, er,
technically a spider-demon. And Saya? well,
shes just a regular girl in a pretty nightie.
Just kidding flesh tentacles!
Obstacles between you and smacking
your friends across the jaw with your big
meaty appendage are few.2 everything is
designed to accommodate: quarter-circleheavy inputs, quickly refilling Super bars; the
ability to call in support characters to attack.
theres even a button to dodge trouble, and
a triggerable variable Rush state that lets
you auto-combo by mashing buttons. why
hello there, breakdown. (im fine. its what
blasterz calls KOs.)
Yet theres zero explanation of these
mechanics. You get a barebones Story mode,
Score Attack, versus and Online, but no
tutorial or even Challenge mode for combo
drills. Fighting enthusiasts will uncover
competitive complexity for themselves in
blasterz lightning-fast aerial footsies and
intricate parrying options. At
least superficial scraps rule, too:
in all seriousness, this booby
fighters got a great personality.
Jen Simpkins

FootNotES 1 Youll adore or abhor the bikini costume DlC.


Personally, i remain unconvinced of the bullet-resistant properties
of swimwear. 2 that sounded less wrong in my head.

info

Format PS4 Eta Out nOw


Pub SOeDeSCO DEv veRtiGO GAMeS

aDamS vENturE:
oriGiNS
You wont Adam and eve it

heres nothing quite like the sensation


of solving a satisfyingly tricky puzzle
the feeling of working through all a
conundrums possible answers to reach that
one, incontrovertible solution. Alternatively,
if you prefer to bash out a couple of guesses
before fluking your way onto the right
answer, heres a bargain bin adventure
thatll allow you to do just that, such is the
simplicity of its all-too-basic brainteasers.
Adams venture isnt merely puzzles,
and its globetrotting narrative follows a
cocksure indiana Jones-type as he traverses
crumbling temples, evades nefarious
corporate goons, and even confronts an
ancient evil. Yet while that might make for
a compelling back-of-the-box summary,
in practice, its an excuse for unresponsive
platforming, instant-fail stealth sections,
and a bit of gentle Christian sermonising.1
whats more, the lead character just
isnt likeable. Adam tosses out one-liners
with gleeful abandon, but his witticisms
simply never land. Sometimes theyre
marred by ropey voice acting. Occasionally
theyre faintly sexist.2 Above all, theyre
just consistently unfunny, like playing as a
concussed nathan Drake.
On a technical level, the game is simply a
shambles, with amateurish animation and
obtrusive texture pop-in accompanying your
every step. Couple those troubles with some
truly dated visuals, and the overall effect
is to completely rob Adams venture of any
sense of spectacle. Yet while theres little to
recommend this Christian caper,
its too breezily straightforward
to be truly hateful either. Just
dont go in expecting a religious
experience. James Nouch

FootNotES 1 One crummy conundrum has you rearranging bible


verses. 2 Adams attempts at flirtation are especially bizarre, and
include unprompted compliments on a womans smell.

087

088

SerieS callbackS are


beautifully crafted grinding
along railS never felt So Slick.

This fuzzy dude is the


galaxys main star but
plenty of smart-mouthed
NPCs dazzle, too.

review

editors
award

ShEEP ShootEr

ratChEt
& CLaNK

@itsJenSim

Riveting reboot proves retros


got a brand new Blarg

info
Format PS4
Eta out now
PuB Sony
DEv inSomniac
gameS

ou never forget your first KISS


and Insomniacs PS2 actionplatformer lived and breathed
that keep it simple, stupid
principle. It was pure Lombaxhopping, glitterball-blasting,
crate-smashing joy. And the
reboot? Well, pucker up, as the
essential brilliance of Ratchet & Clank is back,
and heres the tutorial for newcomers: jump,
shoot, smile until you cant feel your face.
Or at least it would be that simple, were the
expanded Solana Galaxy not freshly stuffed with
distractingly delicious detail. Flinging Day-Glo
space ferret Ratchet (plus metal backpack buddy
Clank) across bustling Metropolis and through
tropical Pokitaru, you admire a glistening,
unfortunate-looking alien here, a spaceshipstudded vista there aaand oops. Er, you didnt
need that health bar, did you?
Its easy to forget about small things like not
getting shot to fuzzy ribbons when the worlds
been polished to a cinematic gloss. This is a
movie tie-in, but movement feels so fluid its like
playing the flick itself. The controls are hyperprecise: each nostalgia-powered bounce around
Captain Qwarks revamped fitness course an
elegant operetta starring your thumbs singing the
praises of 3D platforming. Light, instantaneous,
effortless how it was always meant to be.

CLaNK GooDNESS

The screws have also been tightened on Ratchets


unique arsenal. Each weapon fires its bonkers
load with individual authority the Combuster
peppers foes with flaming quickfire; the
Pixelizers scattershot acid-green ray deploys with
a Space Invaders-esque bloop; the Sheepinator
requires a steady hand with the rangey beam to
get Ratchet up to his elbows in enemy DNA.
Combat is perfectly pitched, with limited
ammo forcing you to switch it up w pauses

089

Yep, planet Pokitaru


looks this incredible.
Go ahead and pop
your eyeballs back in.

090

right New
blaster the
Pixelizer even
works on
humungous
mobs and that
includes bosses.

Left Levels
are bigger than
ever, and sliding
about Batalia on
rails is certainly
no grind (sorry).

the chaos as you nonchalantly, hilariously


consider your weaponry options as if deciding
between types of marmalade at your local Tesco.
Select one, time unfreezes, and a giant tank
bobbing its head to 70s disco is treated to a
turret-full of flamethrower.
And there are myriad ways to turn up the heat
youre packing. Bolts that soar out of smashed
crates in a jingling, sparkling flurry can be used
to purchase weapons, while hidden Raritanium
shards buy you upgrades. And whats better than
one homicidal robo-bodyguard? Two homicidal
robo-bodyguards, obviously. Liberal use of your
weapons automatically levels them up Mr
Zurkon births a Zurkon Jr sidekick at level five
while the Warmonger rocket launcher cheekily
rebrands itself Peacemaker.
And its not just the pea-shooters reinventing
themselves. Series callbacks are beautifully
crafted rejuvenations grinding along rails has
never felt so slick, and Clanks reprogrammable
Gadgebot puzzle sections offer more to get your
head around than ever.

one cheat letS you give


ratchet a t-rex head
(but Sadly not tiny armS).

Completely new additions


are some of the most creative
content in the series, with two
boss battles being highlights
ones a round of jetpack-aided
aerial chicken with a returning
star; the other sees a foe using
Ratchets arsenal against him.
That Groovitrons not such a
giggle now, is it? Inevitably,
though, there are downsides to
such extensive tinkering. Is it
a quality tune-up of a classic?
Undoubtedly. Does it bolt
on some cracking new parts?
Absolutely. But have the devs
been overly eager with the
OmniWrench? Perhaps. PS4s
Ratchet & Clank is so sleek
that its weaker components
almost audibly rattle.
A once-simple story
plucky Galactic Ranger
wannabe and diddy defect
Warbot fight planetobliterating Chairman Drek
is now a muddled pastiche. Is
it following the original games
plot? Or the new movies? And
then theres the new games

Qwark-narrated perspective
its all too much. Movie
characters such as sassy ladyranger Cora and cyborg baddie
Victor Von Ion are jammed in
with little explanation. And
the formerly complex central
friendship? Robbed of screen
time, it falls flat and in the
critical final hours, questionable
detours, padded-out sections
and a movie-mandated Lombax
strop scramble the pacing.

CoLLECt-QuIBBLES

The sheer amount of tacked-on


stuff extends to the collectibles.
Holocards, excluding the
well-hidden set that earns
you the legendary RYNO, feel
unnecessary a set might get
you a 5% extra bolts buff or
upped damage on your already
well-upgraded weapons.
It doesnt help that the
raspberry-blue floozies
practically throw themselves
at you if you so much as
look at an enemy funny.
The cards contain series trivia,

review
the opm breakdown
w h at y o u d o i n r at c h e t & c l a n k

3% getting briefly
distracted from
quality gaming by
annoying bugs.
Son of a glitch!

7% Scampering
around puzzle
sections and
away from
danger as the
adorable clank.

45%
Planet and

platform-hopping
through the
enormous,
gorgeous galaxy.

10% chuckling
at the many retro
references and mr
Zurkons patter.

15% bashing
every crate,
toolbox and
piece of public
property for
those sweet,
sweet bolts.

20% would you


like your enemies
toasted, pixelised
or sheepified?

above Time to
play as Clank in
a game of jumprope only with
more lasers
and more death.

s tat pa c k

02 11 3 28

right New
dogfighting
sections are a
rush. And yes,
theres a Star
Fox reference.

The year the


frachise was
born with the
PS2 release of
the original.
Ah, memories.

Planets that
Trick-filled
you can bounce,
hoverboard
blast and boogie races to master
your way through Bronze, Silver
in 2016s
and Gold
PS4 reboot.
cups await.

Cheat-unlocking
Gold Bolts to
find. Getting
them all will
bag you
invulnerability.

friends & enemies

Dr NEF
a

EK
Dr

ChaIrma

ra
Co

uS
rIo
091

above Youll replay just to see every enemys unique Groovitron boogie.
the new ranger seems
lovely. Shame we dont
really get to know her.

the up your arsenal foe


pops up. wheres your
medical degree, eh?

second opinion clank commander

Remakes are just that the same old game


updated. But Ratchet & Clank is the first one
Ive played to actually feel like an entirely new
experience. Its completely at home in 2016 thanks to
wonderfully expressive visuals and a boredom-staving
pace that transitions between hoverboard races, aerial
dogfights and jetpacking explorations with the graceful
timing of a ballroom dancer. Albeit one with a gun that
turns foes into pixels. Ben Griffin
trophy cabinet
FW

ar
SuPE
rt

a mP

EL

maStEr

the final boss fight. Combat


and platforming certainly dont
offer endless complex depths
to explore, either.
But its hard to argue the
nitty-gritty with a game thats
the best-looking thing on PS4
right now, handles as smoothly
as a buttered dream, and lets
you turn giant flying brainsquids into 8-bit sprites and/
or sheep and/or disco divas.
Its also difficult to scrutinise
flaws when youve a smile
so wide its obstructing your
vision. Despite some overcomplications with narrative
and mechanical components,
and a couple of loose technical
screws, Ratchet & Clanks
return is quite simply
glorious fun.

I ha
t

and make weapons available in


the unlockable Challenge Mode
its a case of little challenge,
little reward. Little point, then.
The new functionality for
the series coveted Gold Bolts,
however, more than makes
up for that wasted potential.
They encapsulate the retro,
yet utterly revivified, feelgood spirit of the reboot.
In an inspired twist, the
items are now spent not on
superweapons, but on cheats.
Hunt down the shinies and
you can transform bolts into
Sonics rings or Legend Of
Zelda rupees. Theres also a
hipstermatic in-game filter
to unlock (Ive dubbed it
Clankstagram). One cheat even
lets you give Ratchet a T-rex
head (comically tiny arms are
sadly not included).
I do, unfortunately,
experience a handful of
technical issues crates pop
in and out of existence, theres
missing dialogue audio, and I
even glitch into an enemy on

has a penchant for


tailored suits. oh, and
blowing up planets.

ra

DEr

verdict

hold onto your puny human


eyeballs. despite stumbles, its
a gleeful party with old friends
and otherworldly levels of
gorgeous, all at a piffling price
point. Jen Simpkins

bronze

silver

become the evil lombax upgrade every weapon


twin of anchormans
to maximum level.
brick tamland by
the drunk-on-power
breaking every lamp
cackling is an
in aleero city.
optional step.

gold

holocard trading
might be a bit boring,
but youll have to
complete every set if
you want this trophy.

review
The finale ends on a
cliffhanger as second
season episodes 6, 7 and
8 come later this year.

@itsjensim

DiG it

092

Episode

Series

minEcraFt Story
moDE: EPiSoDE 5

Sift through the dirt for a hint of unexpected gold

info
Format PS4
Eta Out NOw
Pub telltale
GameS
DEv telltale GameS

ome of you cannier crafters may have


noticed that, after the first episode,
my reviews of Telltales interactive
adventure Minecraft Story Mode
disappeared. Full disclosure: I buried em.
Along with the memories of clunky combat,
offensively lazy dialogue and the last of any
hoots I gave about the tedious plot. But at the
conclusion of my grind through second-rate
storytelling, I unearthed a gem.

But with the discovery of


an enchanted set of flint and
steel, sparks fly. Its off through
a portal to Sky City to reach
the mystical Eversource before
rivals the Blaze Rods. Along the
way, were treated to and you
might want to sit down for this
one, Story Mode war vets
genuinely funny dialogue.

Not that there wasnt a crunchy layer of the


series typical faults to scrape off first. Pickaxedeep in a jungle temple, with puzzles that either
merrily defy all logic or are insultingly simple,
protagonist Jesse and his/her band of blockbusting buddies reminisce. Remember when we
defeated that giant boss? A couple of critically
important characters snuffed it? And everything
felt generally finale-ish? Ah, mediocre times.
Wait, why does this episode exist again?
To have Jesse and friends join the civil
service, presumably. Our heroes, now covered
in glory and the body odour of adoring fans,
inexplicably become town planners. This involves
telling series baddie-turned-lovable slimeball
Ivor, through classic Telltale dialogue options
of varying sensitivity, that his massive,
lava-spewing skull fortress should have had
planning permission. Thrilling.

SKy Divor

Fortress enthusiast Ivor is


a riot, fangirling over the
Eversource like a Japanese
schoolgirl and insisting his
weight is proportionate to his
height! after hes hauled from
a cliff edge.
The quality continues, an
intriguing tale of friendship,
jealousy and even politics
weaves through storm-lashed,
monster-beseiged, skydiving
QTE set-pieces somehow as
cinematic as they are cuboid.
And the true nature of the
Eversource? A stroke of comic,
distinctly Minecraftian genius.
By the time the final episode

is cleverly making kid-friendly


quips about the importance
of gender neutrality, Im as
impressed as I am baffled. This,
from the series that just one
episode ago has your character
study prismarine shards and,
after much contemplation,
announce, Prismarine is a cool
word. Priiiismarine.
Sadly, the reality is that
Episode 5 isnt reason enough
to shovel through this utterly
middling series. Plus the finale
is still hampered by fudgey
combat, limp pseudo-puzzles
and the odd audio bug. Lacking
Telltales signature flair for
engaging storytelling, the first
season of Story Mode remains
a potential diamond stuck
firmly in the rough.
verdict

a familiarly average start, but


with sharp writing and dramatic
set-pieces, the finale builds to
excellence. Promise in spades,
but Im glad Season Ones kicked
the bucket. Jen Simpkins

review
Were sure an island
full of crazed crows
makes for a wonderful
summer getaway.

armlESS FuN

@bentyrer

SEvErED

093

Slicing through all expectations

info
Format PS Vita
Eta Out NOw
Pub DriNkbOx
StuDiOS
DEv DriNkbOx
StuDiOS

rinkboxs follow-up to Guacamelee


takes about seven seconds to destroy
any expectations you may have. If
youre awaiting another playful trip
through the underworld, think again. Instead,
this is a brutal journey, one that replaces
the pithiness of Guacamelee with sincerity
and melancholy. Dont let that put you off,
though, as this mature journey is a fascinating
experiment that fits PS Vita superbly.

Dropping into the boots of the one-armed Sasha,


who awakes in a world in which she doesnt
belong, you receive a sword and must find her
family across three sprawling areas. Surprisingly,
this is a first-person crawler like ancient maze
games in which you can look around on the spot,
but only move forwards one room or step at a
time. Initially disorientating, the deliberate speed
suits the contemplative story, as you shuffle and
ponder through Severeds labyrinths.
Once you adjust to the slower pace, Severed
puts the sumptuous art design front and centre.
It feels like youre wandering through your own
graphic novel, especially when you first come
face to dripping maw with the monsters youll

NOthiNg SayS jOb well


DONe like StealiNg aN
eyeball Or fiVe.

be fighting. Putting PS Vitas


features to the fore, combat is
exclusively flicks of the finger
on the touchscreen.

SwiPE right

To begin with, it almost feels a


little Fruit Ninja-y. But Severed
quickly develops a considered
take on duelling. You fight one
monster at a time, but must
swiftly flick between the group
that surrounds you. Strikes can
be parried by dragging in the
direction of their attack and,
with plenty of different enemy
types, distinct strategies are
required to take on each group.
Plus, in a gorily satisfying twist,
you upgrade your character
by chopping off bits from the
creatures you defeat. Nothing
says job well done like stealing
an eyeball or five.
Unfortunately, its not the
most comfortable way to play.
Holding your PS Vita in one
hand and slashing with your
other leads to inaccuracy
certain encounters trip into
frustration as you need to
manage groups of monsters as
well as a ticking clock. At its

best, theres a lovely flow to


taking down beasts, but
at its worst, its consoleflinging worthy.
On top of that, the
adventuring can lean a little too
much on backtracking. While
theres nothing wrong with
the Metroidvania abilities that
open up secrets in previously
ticked-off areas and make
for some effective puzzles
later on there are so many
secrets buried within each area
that it sometimes feels less
empowering and more of a slog.
But these niggles are
brief and barely matter by
the credits. Severed is an
unusual game that remains
compulsively fascinating,
making full use of PS Vitas
strengths feeling like it
couldnt exist anywhere else
to craft a quietly moving tale.
verdict

beguiling and unique,


Severeds flaws dont distract
from an engrossing adventure
that mixes old-school and
contemporary game design.
ben tyrer

review
info

Format PS4 Eta Out NOw


Pub GuNGHO ONliNe DEv CamOuflaj

Format PS4 Eta Out NOw


Pub CuRve DiGital DEv Game SwiNG

info

Format PS4 alSo oN PS vita Eta Out NOw


Pub & DEv a CROwD Of mONSteRS

rPubliquE

StikbolD

uNEPic

the art of keeping Hope alive

Dont dodge this couchplay classic

its an accurate name

094

info

his dystopian saga was originally a


mobile game but always seemed
destined for something greater,
hence the leap to PS4. it challenges both
emotionally, and in gaming terms from
early on: staring into the panicked face of
a girl named Hope, you learn shes going
to be erased for having a book that
supposedly infects young minds.
Hope is whisked away for a rough
inquisition, observed from the lens of a
nearby security camera. that leaves you
with numerous questions, and Rpubliques
measured pacing throughout five episodes
as well as subtle narrative clues in the
form of posters, voicemails and newspaper
cuttings makes for some excellent storytelling throughout.1
the main idea is to bust Hope out of
the building, eluding Prizrak patrols. But
theres no real sense of urgency when you
realise that getting caught simply means
being tossed in a holding cell you can easily
escape.2 the fun, however, clearly lies in
not getting caught at all.
whats more, sneaking around is made
interesting by switching between Hope
and the cameras lining the corridors.
this creates an unlikely synergy between
man and machine in a big brother state,
especially when you can seal off doors and
override locks to aid our escapee. the fixed
camera angles also present a surprising
sense of realism, though the sudden change
of perspective when entering a new location
can be jarring.
Despite its awkwardness
and repetitive scenarios,
Rpublique has heart and a rich,
slow burn plot that keeps you
guessing. rhiannon rees

n instant way to tell whether a


couchplay game is any cop is by the
inability to control your volume while
playing. Stikbold a reimagining of dodgeball
with a heavy dose of 70s style is a corker
in this regard. Get a group of people playing
and, within minutes, theres screaming,
air punching and a whirlwind of chortles.
its ingeniously simple, with up to six
players (four human, two bots) taking part
in either a free-for-all or team match, the
winner being the last one standing. Games
take place across five wildly different
arenas, all with various environmental
hazards to navigate,1 as well as the ball
youre dodging. utilising twin-stick controls,
with p for diving and catching, and i for
throwing, its supremely easy to pick up and
play from the off, while little touches add
a ton of depth, meaning theres plenty to
master if you want to get ultra-competitive.
there are even ways for knocked-out
players to keep enjoying the action.2
then theres the fleshed-out campaign
as well, which you can tackle on your own
or with a mate. the charmingly silly story is
funny, but its the boss fights that are the
highlight. they keep the games goofiness
such as using washed-up jellyfish to beat
back waves of lifeguards while providing
a challenge you dont get in multiplayer.
Short and sharp, its well worth exploring.
Stikbold isnt without its flaws. it can be
a little too chaotic, with some stages having
too many distractions, while the campaign
can be unbearably tough, especially if youre
relying on an inconsistent
ai partner. But dont let that
distract from what this is
the best couchplay game
since towerfall. ben tyrer

heres almost a decent little dungeoncrawling RPG lurking somewhere


within unepic. almost. But not quite.
the basic exploration through boxy caverns
is certainly entertaining, as is the gradual
empowerment of your character as you
drop points into various weapon disciplines
and skills. its also simple but functional.
for the price, there are definitely plenty of
worse ways to spend some time walloping
worms and orcs with an axe.1
mechanically, however, its nowhere near
ambitious enough. Hit monsters to get XP
and get better things to hit them with. then
do it again. and again. it also suffers from
poor art and terrible writing. visually, its as
appealing of one of those pop-up ads that
asks you to shoot the target. theres an
almost childlike level of drawing that looks
terrible when zoomed in, and tiny when not
reading text is a real squint-fest too.2
its also poorly written: various references
are made to Star wars, metal Gear, the
matrix and so on, but with little skill or
charm. theres a version of Yoda called
Yoghurt, for example. its pretty base, too.
the first time you meet a woman, the only
conversation is an excruciating series
of euphemisms for i want to sex you.
theres also a mission in which you have
to rescue females that have been
imprisoned next to beds.
its a real shame. with some slightly
higher production values, this could have
been easier to recommend. However, that
schoolboy level of everything whether
its visuals, tone or humour
drags the whole project down to
a point where it just feels like it
was made by children. and not
in a cute way. leon Hurley

FootNotES 1 Quirky collectibles alert! Hope can pick up indie


game cartridges, echoing Rpubliques origins. 2 Seriously, youd
think the guards would know whats up after the fifth breakout.

FootNotES 1 a windy oil rig allows you to push opponents off the
edge or get squashed by a giant whale. 2 Get revenge by taking out
the remaining players with traps and attacks from outside the ring.

FootNotES 1 Combat involves mashing r. Stats rule so high


attack values are more important than skill. 2 the on-screen HuD
is functional but not pretty info comes at the expense of legibility.

review
info

format PS4 also on PS3 eta Out nOw


puB SOnY Dev SOnY San DiegO

this month
on ps plus
@itsJenSim

There mustve been something in the


PlayStation water this month the
April Instant Game Collection looked
distinctly peaky. Giddy space shooting,
zombie-tainted survival horror, cyberdiseases and mutated goldfish all
brought their own infectious strains of
fun. We were more than happy to get
down with the sickness freebies are
freebies. Even contagious ones.
Base playa

mlB: the shoW 16

Bat slams vs super hands

here was a time when


Sonys big bopper
scored a run of OPM
10/10s that looked to
be seemingly endless but
the switch to PS4 last season
saw it come to an end. Its
not that MLB 15 was in any
way poor, but the removal
of features such as Sounds
Of The Show (in which you
could assign individual walkup or home run music to
any team or player) made the
generational leap feel more
like playground hopscotch.
No such issue this year.
Sounds Of The Show is back,
and PS4s biggest sports
exclusive finally rekindles the
form that made it so essential
for the first half of this
decade. Its on-field brilliance
comes down to nailing the
fundamentals of baseball in
a way thats accessible yet
unfathomably deep.
So, in essence, pitching
comes down to three button
presses on a golf-game-style
swing-o-meter, yet there are
endless nuances once youve
nailed the basics: different
pitches assigned to different
face buttons, strategies in terms
of aiming at a batters hot and
cold zones, and so forth.
Similarly, batting can be
done on timing alone, but the
real skill and achievement
comes from using those hot
zones to wait for the batters
ideal pitch, before steering it

over the fence. Things naturally


get way, way more strategic
and complex than that as you
play, but the excellently honed
dynamic difficulty mechanic
offers just the right amount
of patronisation-free handholding for new players. Within
mere weeks, youll be the
virtual answer to 2016 real-life
super-rook Trevor Story.

lifes a pitch

Presentation-wise, MLB steals


back the just like on TV!
crown worn by NBA 2K over
the last two years. The Show
looks and sounds like an ESPN
broadcast, but feels like one,
too. Thats thanks to the tiny
details you rarely see in other
sports games fans grinning
inanely after catching home
runs, commentator discussions
on the umpires strengths and
weaknesses, late-game replays
of critical events from earlier
in the same match, and so
on. Throw in three massive
long-term modes Diamond
Dynasty, Road To The Show
and the always-outstanding
Franchise and the scope for
bat-swinging, curveball-slinging
happiness here is as vast as
it ever was.
verdict

You need to know the sport to


master it hence no 10/10
this year but PS3s greatest
sports series is on the verge
of once more dominating all
contemporaries. Ben Wilson

@BenjiWilson

we all knew DeaD


star was winging its
way to PS Plus after
someone tried to
throw money at it too soon and Sonys
polite refusal revealed all. But we hadnt
expected the competitive brilliance of
the PS4 space MOBa-like. ten-player
team skirmishes were as much about
capturing outposts and defensive play
in procedurally generated zones as
they were about firing your ships lasers
into anyone who looked at you funny.
antagonising the
undead in survival
horror ZomBi (PS4)
fared less well. a
cricket bat was key to fiendish fights,
but wonky controls and bugs meant it
was occasionally a swing and a miss.
no post-post-apocalypse from actionadventure i am alive on PS3 the
suffering continued in a decaying city
with murky morality. when sacrificing
lives got heavy, PS3 space strategy
savaGe moon swooped in. Ore-mining
and bug-blasting earned credits for
upgrades, prompting tactical decisions.
Should we buy canny traps, or invest
everything in big nasty machine guns?
and the PS Vita lot was especially
virulent this month. a virus nameD
tom had us inhabit the vengeful digidisease bent on er, puzzling its way
through more than 50 levels. if the
frustrating difficulty didnt leave you
queasy, ten-second-level randomised
shoot-em-up shutshimi had you
covered with a scatterbrained goldfish
with disconcertingly muscular, humanoid
arms. Oof. Pass the bucket.

095

VO
LU
M
E1
0

PRESENTS

Blockbuster!

Your 148-page guide to the world of Minecraft

On sale now!
In print. On iPad. On iPhone.
Find it on the GamesMaster Magazine App
Or visit myfavouritemagazines.co.uk

this month
online

dlc

movies

music

how to

trophies

on the store
100 Fallout 4 Far Harbor
Its back to the Wasteland, as the
first story-based DLC has landed.
Steady your sea legs as there are
plenty of feral nasties awaiting you.

097

on your xmb
102 Star Wars:
The Force Awakens
Rip out your sabers and Force-dim
the lights, BB-8s made it to Blu-ray.

music
103 This months hottest tunes

online tests

Dirt Rally

How does the punishingly superb new rallying


champion fare on the hazardous online track?

98

how to
104 Master Hitmans Paris

platinum
club
105 Tom
Clancys
The Division

online tests
what were
playing now

multiplayer modes put


through their paces
by our team of experts

review

rocket
league

andrew Westbrook
learns that playing for
rank simply aint fun

My four-wheeled footy
prowess has come on
in jumps and slides. My
poaching days are behind
me (well, almost) and Ive
actually crafted goals. But
that all means nothing when I foolishly
agree to join a mate in some ranked
co-op play. This buddy lives for Rocket
League. Hes immensely proud of his
hard-earned rank. The barking of
positional orders and the expletiverich questioning of my defensive
skills sure make that clear. But it
teaches me just one thing playing for
points turns you into a right ranker.

098

tom clancys
the Division

its a good day for


Ben tyrer to get shot
in the Dark Zone

Finally joining a mate in


Ubis post-Black Friday
hellscape means its time
to take a first wander into
the lawless Dark Zone.
What a dumb idea. Within
seconds of trying to loot some sweet
beanies, a group of Level 22 NPCs
descend. My chum is a Level 12,
Im a seven. Slaughter is too mild a
description for what happens and
were both immediately tasting
pavement. The Division, sensing were
not ready, boots us back outside.

Destiny: the
taken king

Jen simpkins one-shot


bird-face does not fly
in the crucible

I just cant quit this online


shooter. Theres so much
left for me to see and do.
I triple-hop into Crucibles
PvP carnage for the first
time, proudly rocking
my Celestial Nighthawk helmet. Eat
sextuple the damage, suckers! Except
they dont. My fiery load misses its
mark, and Im left impotent. Er,
this never usually happens, I swear.
Switching out my headgear helps my
Golden Guns premature problem.
Some loadout-tinkering here, some
heavy ammo there, and Im thundering
through Venus on a five-kill streak
with a resurrected ego.

info
Format PS4
PuB CODEMaSTERS
Dev CODEMaSTERS
revieW ISSuE #122, 9/10

Dirt Rally

The cars arent the only things playing dirty

ne of the finest racing games


Codemasters has ever
produced, Dirt Rally is
certainly the devs best rally
game to date. But while
rallying is a motorsport that favours
isolated concentration and split times
over bumper-to-bumper action, the
British studio has included a suite of
multiplayer options to help take the
sting off that mud-caked loneliness.
The first of these comprises Daily,
Weekly, Monthly and Special challenges,
in which you can earn chunky wads
of in-game currency (assuming you
perform well). You only get one shot
at posting your time, which serves to
heighten the sense of pressure as
you aim to balance pushing as hard as
possible through every bump and turn
with not stacking your car into the
robust stack of logs lurking on the
inside of that upcoming corner. Dont
cut, our co-driver warns, before we

decide we know best and


add some impromptu
wood effect trim to
whats left of the bonnet.
Leagues are custom
series that can be set up
online (an option exists
to do so in-game, but
using PS4s browser
for this can be more
challenging than some of
the rally stages, so we
recommend doing this
via a laptop instead) and
tweaked according to
your particular taste.
Events take the form of

multi-stage seasons
that can be geared
towards the particularly
competitive, the
just-for-fun contingent
and any blend of the two.
In both Leagues and
regular events, you have
to make repairs along
the way, ensuring you
still benefit from time
spent managing your
crew in the single-player
championships.
The final piece of the
multiplayer puzzle is
Rallycross, which drops

WERE RaMMED MIDCoRNER By CoWaRDLy


CoMPETIToRS aFRaID
To TakE US oN FaIRLy.

track recorD

Head-to-head racing is kept


simple by sticking to three
classes of car: Classic, 1600
and Super. There are three
tracks (Hell, Hljes and Lydden
Hill), with eight variations.

G
Ea SPoRTS
UFC 2

Wallets ready: ultimate


Team hits the octagon
info
Format PS4
PuB Ea
Dev Ea CanaDa
revieW ISSuE #122, 7/10

verdict

a solid offering that ties in well with


the main game. Penalties for poor
sportsmanship would improve things,
but whats here will keep you Scandi
flicking for a while yet. Ben maxwell

verdict

While the small amount of online


modes reward commitment
rather than casual play, the
fights are just as chinshatteringly intense. Ben tyrer

With just one shot at


posting times, nailing
a corners sweet spot
becomes all-important.

timed runs in favour of simultaneous


four-player clashes. On track, the result
is fantastic, making us hanker for a
TOCa (or at least Grid) reboot, but dont
expect to find too many honourable
drivers were regularly rammed
mid-corner by cowardly competitors
too afraid to take us on fairly.
When you do find yourself with
the right group, however, its a huge
amount of fun, even if the events are
too short-lived to truly compensate for
the amount of time you spend waiting
in the lobby. Compounding the issue is
the absence of a spectator mode while
youre waiting to join a game (though
you can do so while already in an event).
These are small niggles in an
otherwise solid package, however, and
while new Dirts multiplayer options are
slimmer than those found within its
excellent single-player, its ahem
rally anything less than thrilling.

ood news, big spenders.


uFC 2 takes the ultimate
Team template and makes it
work. The main difference is you
chase moves say, the Superman
punch rather than players. The
slow burn, gradual improvement
addiction remains the same and,
once youre invested, its hard not
to want to power through packs.
Elsewhere, Ranked Championships
mode has you moving up divisions,
FIFa Seasons-style. While a few
time-outs looking for games
occur, once youre in, they run
with minimal fuss, though youre
left screaming after getting laid
out by a lucky punch. again. There
are also unranked matches for
knockabouts. Sadly, the games
best mode Knockout doesnt
feature online. a glaring omission
in an otherwise sturdy offering.

Broforce

an online wasteland of
bugs and broliness
info
Format PS4
PuB DEvOLvER DIGITaL
Dev FREE LIvES
revieW ISSuE #122, 7/10

ere desperate to brodown


with four randos in this
spectacular shrine to
muscles n guns. Making it happen,
however, is harder than the
love child of Snake Plissken and
John Rambo. For every game we
manage to actually play with online
strangers, there are at least three
in which our character just doesnt
spawn in, leaving us ruefully
watching other people having fun.
Or worse, a static character doing
nothing. If that wasnt enough,
theres a game-breaking bug that
freezes the entire game when
you enter the lobby, forcing you to
close and re-open the application.
Theres just too much hassle. If you
must have the company of others,
you can host games for people
to join but the reality is youre
better off broing it alone.
verdict

What should have been an


explosion of testosterone-filled
joy is in fact a crumbling mess.
Its basically Hans Grubers plan
at the end of Die Hard. Ben tyrer

099

on the store

empty your wallets


now with the latest
downloadable diversions
expansion

dlc
11.59

Call Of Duty:
BlaCk Ops 3
EClipsE

The second round of


Blops 3 DLC contains
fresh zombies in feudal
Japan and four new
maps. Theres a remake
of Bonsai from World
At War, a space airport,
a volcanic military
complex and a Shaolin
temple on an island.

19.99

Fallout 4 Far Harbor


100

FrEE

Bye-bye, Boston. Were off to solve mysteries in Maine

ored of using the Automatron


DLC to bolt sexy gams onto
loyal robo-butler Codsworth?
We know you arent, you
brilliant maniac. But just in
case you fancied something a little
more substantial from your Fallout 4
expansions, story-based Far Harbor
has sailed onto PS4, with plenty of
whodunnit intrigue and higher-level kit.
Located off Maines coast, the titular
irradiated island is even bigger than
Oblivions Shivering Isles DLC, Bethesda
calling it the largest landmass for an
add-on weve ever created. But dont
expect sun-soaked jollies. Higher levels
of radiation mean Far Harbor is
overrun with new, feral nasties.
Whats even more horrifying than
a ravenous new species of lethal

creatures? Thats right,


politics. In your search
for a missing woman,
youre caught up in the
conflict between the
locals the Children of
Atom and the synths.
Hope youre feeling
Charismatic, as you must
try to restore peace to
the town, whatever that
might cost you. Were
betting limbs or sons.

What wouldnt we
sacrifice for more
time with dishy synth
gumshoe Nick Valentine?
Fortunately, youre
working the case under
Valentines Detective
Agency. And as for
investigative tools, well,
theres nothing better
for subtle sleuthing than
brand new high-level
armour and weapons.

DOnT ExpECT SunSOAkED JOLLIES. FAr


HArBOr IS OvErrun WITH
nEW, FErAL nASTIES.

1.69

Remember that gorgeous


Drakes Fortune scene
where Nate finds a U-boat
atop a waterfall? Well,
now you can plonk it on
your PS4 menu screen.

The first of two free


updates includes four
extra-tough multiplayer
Incursions, four new
sets of gear, Dark Zone
supply drops and Loot
trading. The first,
Falcon Lost, is set in an
underground watertreatment facility. Dont
expect any checkpoints.
5.79

far Cry primal


WEnja paCk

also on Psn

Uncharted dynamic
theme

tOm ClanCys
thE DivisiOn
inCursiOns

FrEE

ant-man Pack

Exclusive to PS3 and


PS4, the Lego Marvels
Avengers add-on has you
play shrinking superhero
Scott Lang (and ten other
characters) in a Pym
Technologies level.

3.99

SPongebob
SqUarePantS kit

The LBP3 level kit


features 117 stickers, 54
decorations and Sackboy
using SpongeBobs
excavated body as one of
200 premium costumes.

7.99

gaaraS tale
Scenario Pack PS1

Sneak back into Naruto


Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja
Storm 4 with adventure
story scenario Bonds Of
The Sandy Sea and three
new secret techniques.

3.99

eSPortS Wrc Pack 2

Rally round, race fans,


the WRC 5 DLC adds
six new special stages
in which to compete.
What else do you win?
A new car the exclusive
Concept Car E2.

Grab the trio of Legend


Of The Mammoth
missions Hunt The
Hunters, The Trapped
Elder and Duel Of
Beasts. You play as a
mammoth trying to
defend your herd. Or
square off against a
glowing rhino, wielding
your fancy new Blood
Shasti Club and enjoying
extra skins and perks.

THE UKS NO. 1


MULTIFORMAT
GAMES MAG
Featuring:
Weve played Platinum Games
tantalising TMNT title! + Interviews!
Previews of huge console exclusives:
Uncharted 4 and Gears Of War 4
Shenmue III, Mass Effect, Final
Fantasy XV all the big games!
Join Cloud, Squall and the gang for
a Final Fantasy retro road trip!
... and much more!

On sale now!
In print. On iOS. On Android
Find it in the GamesMaster magazine app

on your XMB
blu-rays

coming soon
room

16 May
Brie Larson
scooped the best actress
Oscar for her performance
in this drama about a
mother and son imprisoned
in a squalid room.

i Am wrAth

16 May
John Travolta
does his best Liam Neeson
impression in this geriaction
movie about a man out
for revenge following the
murder of his wife.

childhoodS 16 May
end
Mini-series adaptation of
Arthur C Clarkes sci-fi
classic about a seemingly
peaceful alien invasion by
a mysterious race.

hired to kill 16 May


Daft, high concept
90s action movie about
a soldier of fortune who
infiltrates a South American
fortress by posing as a
fashion photographer.

Scott of the 16 May


AntArctic
Ealing Studios classic
chronicles the true story
of British explorer Robert
Falcon Scott and his ill-fated
expedition to the South Pole.

102

Star Wars: The


Force Awakens
Striking back on Blu-Rey

F
Keep an eye out for Daniel
Craig, who cameos as a
Stormtrooper guarding Rey.

orget navigating an asteroid


field with Darth Vader on your
tail: if you want impossible
odds, try making a follow-up
to the most beloved film trilogy
of all time. Miraculously, The Force
Awakens obliterates any lingering ill-will
after the prequel trilogy left everyone
with a nasty case of the Jar Jars.
Picking up 30 years after the
destruction of the Empire, at a time
when the evil First Order has risen
to fill the power vacuum and the Jedi
are considered myths, its difficult
to imagine anyone crafting a more
satisfying Episode VII than The Force
Awakens. As a piece of storytelling,
its superb passing the torch from
the old guard to the new without doing
a disservice to either. Harrison Ford
is wonderful as grizzled smuggler Han
Solo, John Boyega consistently hilarious

as jaded Stormtrooper
Finn and Daisy Ridley the
hidden strength at the
heart of the heroics as
scavenger Rey. Scenestealing ball droid BB-8,
meanwhile, has more
character than the entire
cast of the prequels.
There are niggles:
John Williams score is
more a grower than an
insta-classic, while the
plots mirroring of A New
Hope can leave it feeling
derivative. But it feels
churlish to criticise given
the magnitude of the
achievement Star Wars
is back in the most
thrilling way imaginable.
Jordan Farley

16 May
orAnge iS
the new
BlAck: SeASon 3
The third season of the top
Netflix comedy about female
inmates makes its way to
shiny disc this month.

the Big Short 23 May


Star-studded black
comedy directed by
Anchormans Adam McKay
that wittily exposes the
amoral chaos in the run-up
to 2007s financial crisis.

Spotlight

23 May
Powerful true-life
tale about the Boston Globe
journalists who exposed
widespread child abuse
by the Catholic Church. A
worthy Best Picture winner.

the complete 23 May


AndromedA
Star Trek wannabe based
on a Gene Roddenberry idea
that inexplicably made it to
five seasons. Stars former
Hercules Kevin Sorbo.

gooSeBumpS 30 May
Jack Black plays
Goosebumps writer RL Stine
in this meta adaptation of
the cherished childrens
horror series that sees his
creations escape the page.

The set was chilled


to -1C for parts
of the shoot.

music

Weezer WEEzER
formAt ALBuM etA OuT NOW price 7.99

In true Weezer fashion, this their fourth self-titled


album is known as The White album. Its a goodie,
too: a sun-kissed tribute to California that melds
fuzz-happy guitars and Beach Boys-style vocals into
something both wistful and hella rocking. weezer.com

The Hateful Eight


Quentin Tarantino gets cabin fever

ew filmmakers build a sense of


event around their movies like
Quentin Tarantino. Thats why
his latest, a bum-numbing
three-hour Western set almost
entirely in a claustrophobic cabin
shortly after the American Civil War,
comes not only with an overture, but
was shot on 70mm film a format
scarcely used since the biblical epics
of the 50s and 60s. Lest you think this
is grandstanding, Tarantino has also
crafted a tale worthy of this
extravagant cinematic vision.
Caught in a blizzard on the road to
Red Rock, John The Hangman Ruth
(Kurt Russell) and his bounty Daisy
Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh) are
forced to seek shelter in a creaky log
cabin alongside a gaggle of gunslinging
guests. Naturally, playing nice isnt
in anyones vocabulary.
Few people write dialogue like
Tarantino and its testament to his
abilities that, despite the unwieldy
runtime and theatrical structure, The
Hateful Eight never fails to hold your
attention. Every breath, step and

utterance is loaded with


meaning as wartime
rivalries, intrinsic racism
and the lingering threat
that someone may try
to snatch away Ruths
payday keep tensions
on a hair-trigger.
The performances
are superb (particularly
Jason Leighs cackling
criminal), the snowswept cinematography
is gorgeous and Ennio
Morricones fabulously
foreboding soundtrack
powers the film like a
steam engine.
The undisciplined
runtime, explosions
of stomach-churning
violence and deliberately
dislikeable characters
may prove too much for
some, but otherwise, this
is Tarantinos best work
since his 90s heyday.
Jordan Farley

Jessy lanza
OH NO
formAt ALBuM etA 13 MAY
price 7.99

Like Katy B or
alunaGeorge, Canadas
Jessy Lanza makes a
modern R&B music thats
catchy, but smart with it.
Oh No is more upbeat than
her debut, the flicking
rhythms drawing on a
modern club sound, while
being pop music to the
core. jessylanza.com

eagulls uLLAGES
formAt ALBuM etA 13 MAY price 7.99

There was always a dark undercurrent running


through the music of Leeds post-punks Eagulls,
but for second album Ullages they go full-on stadium
goth. Echo-soaked drums and shrieking, strangulated
guitars are the order of the day. eagulls.co.uk

zayn BEFOuR
formAt TRACK etA OuT NOW
price 0.99

youve got to hand it to exOne Directioner Zayn Malik,


hes managed to pull off the
often-so-elusive bloke leaves
boy band, gets a bit good
manoeuvre with aplomb.
Its a firm goodbye to
squeaky-clean harmony
pop, and a hello to moody
The Weeknd-style R&B with
lots of smouldering looks
and snogging in the videos.
www.facebook.com/zayn

103

how to
doctor
playstation

Our console medic


fixes your tech woes
with actual science

Master Hitmans Paris


Killing two birds with one stone cold killer

1 2 3
STEp 1
Let them
eat Lead

STEp 2
room with
a pew,
pew, pew

STEp 3
Let gravity
do the work

the problem

104

Youve killed and


killed and killed
some more, but
still cant secure a
master rank. You
can get there quick
by hitting your two
targets at the same
time, if only they
were together

Medical school taught me


to do no harm. But it also
taught me to never say no to
freelance games writing. And
to look very, very closely at
contracts. As such, I know that
sniping your way through Paris
gruesome twosome is all about
getting the setup just right.
Youll need a mastery level of
five to hide the Jaeger 7 rifle in
the Shed. Youll also want to
equip a lockpick and spawn
undercover in the AV Centre.
Steal the fireworks detonator
where you first appear and follow
the rifle icon to the shed in the
north-west garden. Pick the lock
down the nearby stairs to reach
the barge. Activate the fireworks
from the top of the ladder and
Victor and Dahlia emerge to
observe, on the patio and balcony,
respectively. Aim for clean
headshots, as torsos take two
bullets. I know, Im a doctor.

Option two is to shepherd


your targets into their panic
room, setting up easy kills. Start
the level undercover in the
Kitchen, then run east to the
security centre and read the
evacuation plans. Now head to the
upstairs kitchen, where you pick
up rat poison and put it on the
sushi (look for the tray with an
interaction symbol). The Doc can
vouch for this working a treat on
those patients who seem to think
they dont really need medicine.
Sure enough, Victors
bodyguard scoffs it. Follow him to
the bathroom, subdue him and
steal his outfit. Use his phone to
call in a fake threat that sends
your hosts to the south-east
room on level two. Now, either
wait in the room and use the
winch to drop a chandelier on
them, or plant a remote mine
find one in the attic by the
security consoles and detonate.

They say mans greatest


enemy is man, but then
they also say you shouldnt
operate blindfolded, so what
do they know? In this case,
man is used as a weapon.
For option three, repeat the
fireworks detonator-swiping trick
from step one. You now need to
transport it to the balcony behind
the auction the Doc suggests
subduing the bodyguard behind
the garden shed by the northwest barge and stealing his outfit.
Now, shimmy up the nearby
drainpipe to the third floor.
Activate the detonator on the
auction balcony and Dahlia
eventually appears to gawp at
the show. When she steps to the
central balcony, it means Victor
is directly beneath her press
q to push her onto his head.
City of love? City of shove, more
like. (And they say Patch Adams
is the only funny doctor.)

the verdict

next month

Six bodies in 30 minutes,


an efficiency rate that would
impress any government
inspector. Some might call
for an inquest, but Id call
room service for a bottle
of bubbly. Trs bien!

The Doc gets to grips


with some
new science
playing
your PS4
on a PC
or Mac.

Mr trophy

When taking on Level 30


enemies, stick to cover
and use blindfire to
minimise your exposure.

Iain Wilsons PSN ID is


Wilbossman, and his
trophy cabinet is
bigger than yours.

Platinum x 69
Gold x 399
Silver x 1,461
Bronze x 6,097

Platinum Club

Mr Trophy activates his Agent in Tom Clancys The Division

s you head out into


what remains of
Manhattan, focus on
getting your Agent
On the Level by
completing story and
side-missions to build them up to
Level 30. However, there are a
number of trophies you can work
towards on this journey,
to reduce the amount
of grinding required
once at the endgame.
For Skill Kill, you
need to finish off 50
enemies using Skills,
so equip an offensive
item, such as the
turret, and use it regularly in
combat. Whenever you fight
alongside others, heal or buff
your teammates 100 times and
theyll be able to Lean On Me the
Support Station unlocked in the
Medical Wing is the easiest Skill
to use for this.
In order to show off Those
Signature Moves, you
must activate any of the
Signature Skills 100
times, but these are
only unlocked by
purchasing at least
one of the 1,000
supplies in the Base of
Operations, so pick one

and complete enough related


Encounters to purchase the big
upgrade. Signature Skills have a
cooldown of around 15 minutes
per use, which is why you want to
start racking up uses of them as
soon as possible.
Once youve hit that Level 30
cap, you get the chance to show
you Know No Fear by completing

youve cleared out by purchasing


the Canine Unit upgrade in the
Security Wing. Some of these
have been known to glitch, so if
a piece of Intel fails to register,
you should join the game of
someone who hasnt collected it
and pick it up again from there.
The final pieces of silverware
can be tracked down in the Dark
Zone, including
completing a Mass
Extraction, once
youve successfully
helicoptered an item
away from all eight
Extraction Zones.
You must also kill
20 Rogue Agents in order to claim
I am the LAW!. Thankfully, theres
an easy, sneaky way to boost this
with a friend simply team up
and enter the Dark Zone together,
then split your group and take
turns blasting each other until
youve dished out justice the
required number of times.
If youve managed to complete
all of these steps, then youve
earned your status as a Platinum
Agent congratulations on
keeping those streets safe!

SIGNATURE SkILLS HAvE A


15-MINUTE COOLDOWN, SO START
RACkING UP THEIR USES AS
SOON AS POSSIBLE.
all of the missions again on Hard
difficulty. Great. Its potentially
easier to do this solo, as the
number and level of enemies scale
up when with a group, though its
still quite a slog.
Conversely, youll need at least
one partner to earn United We
Stand by starting and completing
a Level 30 co-op mission without
anyone being downed or dying,
and setting the difficulty to Easy
can help with this one.
There are six different
awards relating to the 293
Intel collectibles, which you can
either find using a guide (bit.ly/
Divisionguide) or reveal in areas

NExT ISSUE Our man Trophy faces the


fight of his life as he goes in search of
Dark Souls IIIs shiny pots.

join the
club

Hey! Whats
the hardest
trophy youve
snagged? Tell
us at opm@
futurenet.com

105

Cl
as
si
C
Ga
me

t
re

t
os

o
ti

n
The game isnt tough
just for the hell of it,
but because Miyazaki
wanted you to feel
accomplishment.

info
pub namCo BanDai
Dev From soFtware
releaseD 2009, Ps3
get it now amazon,
14.98

neeD to know

1
2
3
106

miyazaki admits
it was partly
inspired by ico.
the Us deluxe
edition contained
a 150-page guide.
Ps Home got
Ds armour sets,
but only in Japan.

retrostation

F r o ms h e l l

Ah, the Vanguard conquerer of many lives. Git.

me

If you get overwhelmed by a group, youre done.

Ga

ITs A GlorIously
rewArdING ANd
bArbArIcAlly
TouGh AdVeNTure.

while miyazaki and his team were


building one of Ps3s most finely
crafted combat models, the director
decided something was needed to
pierce the games persistent sense of
loneliness; a way for players to link up
without relying too heavily on traditional
communication. the end product was
a system in which you could briefly see
other players ghosts by touching their
bloodstains, while also letting you leave
messages to warn of impending danger.
its a graceful, elegant way of letting
players guide each other without the
need for words; a silent handshake for
souls adventurers to impart advice.
and really, thats the point of Demons
souls learning through failure and
repetition. the games exquisitely
chunky swordplay is demanding, but its
never unfair. Get that shield up, plan
your attacks with surgical precision
and never let your guard down. its
an intoxicating blend that keeps you
constantly vigilant and never anything
less than resolutely engrossed.

si

ost modern games


must make Hidetaka
miyazaki sick.
ample checkpoints.
Patronising tutorials.
regenerating health.
its almost like
theyre not designed to make you
suffer. thankfully, as long as we all
reside on the same watery planet as
From softwares acclaimed director,
Playstation will always be home to a
special breed of savage challenge.
enter Demons souls. Back in 2009,
gamers had yet to truly taste real
pain. sure, the likes of Devil may Cry 3
could kick you squarely in the ass, but
rarely had the Playstation nation seen
anything quite so barbarically tough as
Froms wonderfully designed, hugely
disciplined and gloriously rewarding
fantasy adventure.
set in the lonely, often perversely
beautiful kingdom of Boletaria, Demons
souls took many of its cues from Kings
Field, another From series that revelled
in dark dungeons and granite-hard
beasties. Despite their quality, those
titles had minimal impact outside of
Japan, and certainly cant lay claim to
kickstarting the same calibre of dynasty
as the souls series. of course, they
didnt have an ingenious online system
in their corner

as

Demons Souls

Cl

Each month we celebrate the most important,


innovative or just plain great games from
PlayStations past. This time, we get ready to suffer
like never before, as we take a loving look back at
the devilishly difficult delights of a modern classic

this hyper-focused approach to


fights is further bolstered by a terrific
risk-versus-reward system. when
your mute slayer of Demons perishes,
they leave behind a bloodstain with all
of their previously amassed souls (the
games currency for levelling-up). on
your next go, return to where your
corpse dropped and you can greedily
suck those precious resources back up.
Fall again before you make it back, and
those souls are gone forever. rarely
has the price of failure been balanced
on such a precarious knife edge.

publishing purgatory

Unlike Bloodbornes Yharnam or


Dark souls lordran, Boletaria feels
cloyingly claustrophobic. this is not an
open world, but a series of battered
caverns, castle ramparts and dungeons
disparately knitted together by the
nexus a dank, boxy hub that acts
as the players temporary safe haven.
while it may lack the cohesive scale of
its spiritual successors, Demons souls
still creates a world where intrigue and
danger lurk around every deadly corner.
Considering Froms masterpiece
remains one of Ps3s most cherished
exclusives, its amazing to think it
almost never got a european release.
sony helped launch the game in Japan,
but elected not to publish it elsewhere.
mercifully, a spate of glowing reviews
and word-of-mouth praise eventually
saw namco Bandai publish a Pal
version, some 18 months after its initial
release. the Playstation landscape
would look decidedly different (and
nowhere near as deliciously punishing)
if namco hadnt made that call.

The Nexus is a soothing (if depressing) safe zone.

107

ti
me
ma
ch
in
e

Name
that game
Guess the four games,
and their scores, from
these review quotes

opm timE machiNE

5 yEars aGo
Deus Ex marked the spot in OPM #58
though one review in particular proved
to be anything but god-like

Like a 60-yardfieLd goaL into


a hurricane
headwind, it comes
up just short
of greatness.

3
for every
singLe thing you
can think of
hammers, fondue,
teLetext theres
someone out there
who finds it wiLdLy
arousing.

Above Deputy editor Leon spent ten hours playing


Deus Ex: Human Revolution, excitedly switching
from Terminator to cat burglar, assassin to hacker.
He was right to feel pumped Eidos action stealther
went on to score a tidy 8/10 later in the year.

Below left We Dare got blasted in an all-time classic


OPM review. Contraceptive, delivered by PS3.
Below right Bioshocks Ken Levine promised and
delivered great things from Infinite. Big daddy indeed.

4
its exactLy
Like the princess
bride, except its
about tennis. and
andre the giant
is sadLy absent.
(for shame.)
1. madden nfL 13, issue #76, 8/10
2. resident evil hero hd, issue #120,
7/10
3. we dare, issue #58, 2/10
4. everybodys tennis, issue #48, 8/10

Answers

108

yes, oLd
aLberts shadow
dash makes him
Look Like an
uroborosfueLLed road
runner, but its
a fun addition.

Far left An
Uncharted 3
preview saw us
tip it for Game Of
The Year honours.
Bold, we know.
Left We outlined
20 essential PSN
downloads for
under 50. If
youve still not
played Stacking,
just leave. Now.

retrostation

dont Make Me play!

who?

Mad Max

dont like it. never tried it. every month we force


one of our team to play their most feared game

L
info
pub WArnEr BrOS

Dev AvAlAnchE
InTErAcTIvE
releaseD 2015
get it now rAKuTEn,
18.50

what?
Critically divisive but
disarmingly pretty
sandbox starring
the unhinged Aussie
petrolhead. Fisticuffs
are borrowed from
Batman, while spot
welded on top is car
customisation and a
tanker full of dusty
vehicle combat.

Arkhams Batmobile
failed to convince
Matt Clapham that
what his beloved
combat formula
needs is more
Formula One. Can a
game that borrows
its mechanics really
change his mind?

ike anything else, games go


through fashions. The one in
vogue when I was a rookie
journo was the canned drama
of the tacked-on driving
section. I cant even count the number
of helter-skelter narrow escapes that
action-adventures have pretended Ive
had behind the wheel. So, when Mad
Max takes the bolt-on driving bit and
makes it the game, all I can see is a
sort of distorted genius.
Even before I put pedal to metal,
its worse than I feared. Some bright
spark plug has decided to make Max
control more like a car than a human.
This works in that the right trigger
makes both go a bit faster, and then
falls apart lemon-quick. So Max acts like
a madman, slurring his way through
the opening as fingers attuned to the
Dark Knight are dragged into the harsh

sOMe BrIght
spArk DeCIDeD tO
MAke MAx COntrOL
MOre LIke A CAr.

Dev Avalanche sure can wring magnificence out of decay. If scrap-rich locations werent just

another icon screaming for focus, Id probably enjoy poking around the maps pockets of beauty.

wasteland glare. But that bleaches into


insignificance when I accept the keys to
the Magnum Opus. In mere minutes, Im
wrestling a junker that handles like an
eel in a bath of KY Jelly through another
faux-high-stakes escape.
Thing is, I can see why others like it.
But its the kind of game that slips on
a polarising filter the second it boots.
Where I experience an achingly slow
grind to get a half-decent car, others
see hard-won empowerment. Where
I find busywork icons to smash,
scarecrows to topple, a whole lot of
pressing q near things a mirror self
would see plenty to do.
Both of us would agree that toppling
camps is awesome, but I ate a lot of
dust in the mid-noughties, and after
hours of entertainment-parched q
pressing, I slip out a long-loved copy
of Burnout, and find all the best bits of
Avalanches adventure condensed into
four exhilarating minutes. Sorry, Max,
but I still prefer fast and furious to your
wending fury road.

109

HA
LL
OF
FA
ME

THE dEfiniTivE guidE To CuRREnT-gEns gREaTEsT gamEs

ps4 Hall of famE


1

MeTal gear solid V:


The PhanToM Pain

Konami might try and scrub Hideo Kojimas name from the ultimate in tactical
espionage action, but itll never remove his fingerprints. While retaining
that distinct storytelling and sense of wonder that defines an MGS
title, MGS V offers a level of freedom and creativity unheard of in any
sandbox. Grand, majestic and bittersweet, this is an instant classic.

grand ThefT auTo V

bloodborne

sTreeT fighTer V

Laughing in the face of other cross-gen ports, GTA V


on PS4 is more than just a mere HD remaster. Upped
to a glorious 1080p, it weaves everything that made
the PS3 original great, with new music, more dynamic
weather and a game-changing FPS mode.

The wiTness

The ultimate puzzle game? Thekla, Incs behemoth


boasts one of PS4s most stylishly inviting, and
resolve-testing, worlds to explore. It then crams it
so full of secrets that even the platinum isnt the end
of the adventure. Its a true original.

10

driVeclub

11

alien: isolaTion

desTiny: The Taken king

12

Towerfall ascension

The lasT of us reMasTered

13

baTMan: arkhaM knighT

fallouT 4

14

uncharTed: The naThan


drake collecTion

110

With the finest third-person melee combat in gaming,


drool-worthy art design and the most twisted
monsters imaginable, this is a gorgeously Gothic
must-have. The Old Hunters expansion adds enough
nightmare fuel to make a Yharnam return essential.

Mechanically, this is as close to perfection as any


fighter on console everyone from hardcore fans
to first timers can grab a pad/fightstick and have
serious fun. The launch games lean, but with free
add-ons coming all the time, it keeps getting better.

The Taken King expansion means theres never been


a better time to be a Destiny player for veterans
its a giant vat of new content thatll keep you playing
for months; for newcomers it offers the smoothest,
most complete shooter a PS4 owner could wish for.

This modern masterpiece just gets stronger with age,


like a full-bodied stilton. A starkly brutal, emotionally
honest take on the end of the world, Naughty Dogs
stealth shooter is quite simply one of the best games
ever, even if this PS4 port doesnt add much to it.

Hitting PS4 with the atomic force of a Fat Boy,


Fallouts excellent gunplay and crafting systems
can trigger a nasty case of RPG-itis. Its not without
its faults (or vaults), but the scale of Bethesdas
wasteland will keep you bunkered down for weeks.

The wiTcher 3: wild hunT

The White Wolf himself finally rides onto PS4


and brings with him one of the most diverse and
challenging RPG worlds ever seen. Mesmerising to
look at and utterly engrossing to play, CD Projekt
REDs farewell to Geralt is a current-gen essential.

The premier current-gen racer leaves its rivals


for dust due to gorgeous graphics, strong social
features and great handling. Major add-on Driveclub
Bikes is also the greatest bike racing game on PS4,
thanks to making driving on two wheels fun again.

Explore Ridley Scotts original vision of a horrortinged future in startling fidelity with an attention
to detail that borders on the obsessive. Its time to
remember what made the xenomorph so scary in
the first place and then get killed by it.

You havent lived until youve enjoyed a four-player


free-for-all in this instant couchplay classic. The solo
campaign is fine by itself, but almost nothing beats
the arrow-grabbing, death-defying last-second kills
of local multiplayers mayhem.

Rocksteady sends the Bat out with a bang. A


compelling, cathartic story adds new layers to the
Dark Knight, while PS4 allows Gotham to blossom
with a truly amazing engine. The stealth still sings,
the fisticuffs are fab and the Batmobile is brill.

If you somehow missed the trilogy on PS3 then this


excellent remaster should be your next purchase.
Nathan Drake is PlayStations biggest hero, and no
PS4 owner should skip his collection.

15

life is sTrange

The sublime writing and pacing of this episodic


narrative will have you agonising over choices,
and then marvelling at their flawless integration. To
quote heroine Maxs BFF Chloe, its hella good. Youll
wish you could play it all over again for the first time.

retrostation

16
NEW!

17

18

19

20

dirT rally

Codies drifts its rallying masterclass onto PS4,


offering the first real competition for Driveclubs
current-gen crown. This purist racer is less gaudy
than previous Dirts, and can be brutal making
steel-nerved victories all the more exhilarating.

MinecrafT

Bigger, better and blockier than ever before on


PlayStation, this iconic build-em-up benefits
massively from PS4s additional power and gives you
a creative playground 36 times the size of that on
PS3 in which to build. Or lob TNT around, if you want.

We dive into ps4s library for gold.


This month: Rpgs
P IC K

#1

basTion

Jen simpkins thinks the watercolour blend


of gun-toting and emoting is rPgenius

Its handheld original is rightfully riding high in the


PS Vita Hall Of Fame as its PS4 remake-of-sorts
swoops onto the current-gen roster on a raft of new
features. Media Molecule makes the most of all that
extra power and strikes gold yet again.

You might not expect elegance when a games


snowy-haired hero faceplants into every level,
but this is a stained-glass masterpiece. Stepping
stones float up beneath your feet much like
the utterly moving mystery. The Narrator purrs
caramel; The Kid sinks a plethora of weapons
into tough enemies; gameplay-customising idols
unlock for entirely new experiences. Exquisite.

resogun

Capturing everything that made the shoot-em ups of


old so compelling and combining it with a sumptuous
voxel-based visual presentation, Resogun should
come with a health warning that reads: This game
will consume your every waking moment.

P IC K

#2

wasTeland 2:
direcTors cuT

ben Tyrer believes fallout could learn


a thing or two from its godfather

Journey

In a gaming landscape dominated by mindless


violence and blabbering idiots, this wordless
walkabout stands tall in red robes. Its about joining
an online stranger and going for a wander, exploring
a beautiful sandy world together in quiet awe.

unTil dawn

22

gone hoMe

Once destined to live its life as a PS Move curio on


PS3, Supermassive Games ode to the teen slasher
movie has emerged on PS4 with a rusty, bloody
axe in one hand and a rather nasty looking set of
consequence-based choices in the other.

A perfect port from PC, Gone Home is tensionbuilding masterpiece that has you slowly peeling back
layers from the games central mystery. Its short,
but theres zero padding to the exploration, making
every key discovery feel like a powerful gut punch.

sTar wars baTTlefronT

Perfectly capturing the spirit of Star Wars, this is


a complete triumph in making you feel like youre in
amongst the Empires assault on Hoth, or bringing
about its demise on Endor. Accessible and immediate,
you wont want to put your DualShock 4(orce) down.

24

dragon age: inquisiTion

25

salT & sancTuary

NEW!

alternative picks

Tearaway unfolded

21

23

bubbling undER

Wasteland 2 features zero easy choices. At no


point are you faced with an obvious solution, or
even an agreeable one. Just as it should be. The
turn-based combat is unflinchingly difficult, while
the journey across an irradiated America offers
a fuller world than spiritual successor Fallout.
Plus, you can write your own bio. We approve.

iTS JourNEY oFFErS A


FullEr World ThAN SPiriTuAl
SuccESSor FAllouT.
P IC K

#3

diViniTy: original sin

rPg expert robin Valentine summons


up a storm of old-school strategy
Electrified blood, flaming oil, explosive toxic gas,
wanton teleportation this isometric gems turnbased combats are an exercise in ordered chaos,
and like nothing else on PS4. Bring a co-op buddy
along for the ride and engage in in-game verbal
sparring matches while the expansive and mindbogglingly interactive world quite literally burns
down around you. Now thats magic.

Following closely on the action-RPG heels of Geralt


of Rivia, Biowares third trip to Thedas conjures
something truly special. Improved combat; an
ace cast of characters; a semi-open world full of
emergent gameplay; an epic story. The list goes on.

Youll lose seasons to this 2D Hard-PG, which takes


the Dark Souls template and twists it to create
something equally addictive. With its peppering of
grotesque monsters, broad skill tree and gothic
art style, youll find no safe haven here.

divinity: original Sin is as reverent of glorious rPGs past as


it is devoted to creating something completely new.

111

HA
LL
OF
FA
Me

The essenTial collecTion of lasT-gen classics

ps3 hall of fame


1

tHe laSt Of uS

PS3s premier developer proves a misbehaving pooch can learn new


tricks in this extraordinary adventure. In true Naughty Dog fashion,
the Californian studio subverts everything from zombie and postapocalyptic tropes to the gameplay beats of its own back catalogue.
effortlessly blending stealth, horror and action with a script destined
to break your heart, TLOU is interactive storytelling at its finest.

GranD tHeft autO v

unCHarteD 2:
aMOnG tHIeveS

10

reD DeaD reDeMptIOn

11

BIOSHOCK InfInIte

JOurney

12

BatMan: arKHaM CIty

MaSS effeCt 2

13

tHe WalKInG DeaD:


SeaSOn One

The largest entry in the series is also one of the


most ambitious games ever, but its fusion of thrilling
missions, entertaining characters and scathing satire
looks effortless. There can be no better way to bring a
generation to a close than this.

A near-perfect open-world fusion of engaging


storytelling, truly compelling characters and a living
environment ripe for experimentation. No sandbox
since has got us quite so invested, and the bold
ending still resonates to this day.

This charming two-hour voyage crafts an incredible,


immersive narrative and a genuine emotional
connection using little more than near-silent figures,
marvellous sand physics and floating pieces of cloth.
A remarkable and unique experience.

While Biowares trilogy-ender sends Shepard out in


fine style, its the middle slice of the delicious sci-fi
sandwich that remains its best. A brilliantly scripted
action-RPG, the closing suicide mission provides an
incredible finale.

Only Valve could turn advanced physics, impossipuzzles and a voice cast comprised of a disembodied
AI and Stephen Merchant into such a unique and
undeniable work of genius. Hands down the funniest
first-person experience on console.

Metal Gear SOlID 4:


GunS Of tHe patrIOtS

The most gleefully playful and imaginative


stealth game on PS3. Whether youre watching a
monkey slurp soda or revisiting the site of the PS1
original, no game honours its past so poignantly.

The game that sparked a million mancrushes, with


a perfectly pitched script, crunchy combat and setpieces like no other. In three words: unprecedented,
unequalled, Uncharted.

112

pOrtal 2

Perhaps the best narrative team of the entire


generation brings one of its finest series to a
staggering climax. The original game would be
well deserving of a place, but the mind-boggling
revelations here run a whole lot deeper.

The most compelling bit of Bats action money can


buy that doesnt involve Heath Ledgers Joker.
Thanks to an acutely detailed open-world chunk
of Gotham, Rocksteadys classic just pips Arkham
Asylum to this spot by the thinnest of bat-whiskers.

Telltale has crafted some amazing stories, but the


first season of The Walking Dead stands among the
best downloadable games ever with emotional ties
and tangible consequences for your actions.

DarK SOulS

14

Heavy raIn

Call Of Duty 4:
MODern Warfare

15

lIttleBIGplanet 2

Akin to nothing else youve ever played (unless


youve already played Demons Souls). It may be as
impenetrable as a vault in Fort Knox, but persevere
and theres a brutal and beautiful challenge within
that you will never, ever forget.

Simply the finest COD ever made. From that nuke


to Captain Prices mesmerising ghillie suit stealth
mission, few games can match Modern Warfares
thrilling scripted spectacle.

From controversial purveyor of interactive cinema,


David Cage, comes this psychological thriller that
plays like no other game on the system (apart from
Beyond: Two Souls, natch). A real masterpiece of
twists, turns, cinematography and, uh: JASON!

Media Molecules second swing at the usergenerated puzzle-platformer is even more essential
than its predecessor, offering a raft of options so
deep and rewarding the only thing holding you back
are the limits of your imagination.

YOUr EVErY NEED FOr ON-thE-gO gOODNESS

pS VItA hAll OF FAmE


1

teaRaway

Peerless crafty platforming from Media Molecule,


this time using PS Vitas raft of touchscreen/
touchpad controls to surprise and delight you in
new ways for hours on end. Full of whimsy, charm
and enough personality to put most games to shame,
Tearaways papercraft world remains Vitas most vibrant title.

peRsona 4: GolDen

This thoughtful and unique JRPG epic


gives you another stab at high school
only this time with intrigue and
superpowers instead of nerves, acne
and an unpredictable vocal register.

Rayman leGenDs

Rather than losing its lustre on the


move to PS Vita, Rays second slice of
sumptuous side-scrolling is even better
on handheld. Touchscreen gestures make
this fine platformer all the sweeter.

metal GeaR soliD


HD collection

Two of PlayStations finest adventures


scale down beautifully, with enough
cutscenes to fill a transatlantic flight.
Even less excuse not to play, then.

10

spelunKy

With more than a subtle nod of its fedora


to a certain whip-wielding Dr Jones,
Spelunkys procedurally generated
dungeons and platformer/roguelike
mashup shines brightest on PS Vita.

velocity 2X

11

steins;Gate

littlebiGplanet

12

Hotline miami

supeR meat boy!

13

cRypt oF tHe
necRoDanceR

A ludicrously enjoyable puzzle/platformer


hybrid that should come with a health
warning. So joyous is the side-scrollers
twin-stick teleporting, theres a danger
youll smile your face clean off the bone.

Sackboys back, smaller but just as


lovable as ever. His platforming antics
work perfectly on Vita, and the new
control inputs complement the level
creator brilliantly. Also: dawwww.

The new music doesnt match up to the


classic tunes, but Meat Boys longawaited PlayStation debut is the finest,
fleshiest twitch platformer of all. An
essential, thumb-destroying masterpiece.

Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD


RemasteR

14

GRavity RusH

15

Use a gravity-defying cat to break the


laws of physics and zoom across the
skies of a floating steampunk city. With
stylish comic-book looks and a sassy
heroine, this is a rush to remember.

Part puzzler, part top-down


murder-em-up thats as brutal as almost
anything else on PlayStation. Its hard but
never frustrating, with instant restarts
and lightning-fast gameplay.

Take Guitar Hero and Spelunky, then


whack them in a blender. Youll get this
gem, with its addictive soundtrack and
moreish rhythm-action monster-slaying.

Two examples of JRPG royalty, lovingly


restored to their former glory for your
portable pleasure. Their new touch
controls are gasp! a welcome addition.

This mind-bending, tongue-in-cheek


visual novel takes something as simple
as a mobile phone and turns it into a timetravelling extravaganza thats fit to
bursting with comedy and drama.

uncHaRteD:
GolDen abyss

Drake proves hes just as adept at


adventuring on the go. A prequel story
plump with classic jungle action, and
crammed full of typical Uncharted charm.

GRim FanDanGo

An example of genuinely timeless


storytelling finally arrives on PlayStation.
Double Fines deft touch-up retains
the old-school adventuring for a new
generation to savour and enjoy.

113

Parting sh t

LOOk AwAY!

Celebrating PlayStations finest moments

Spoiler
alert

No.39

Grounding the Free Bird


Guitar Hero 2 asks you to shred the unshreddable
last
month
alien:
Isolation

Remembering
how Ridley
Scotts
xenomorph
became
scary
again.

Format PS2 / Pub REd OCTANE / Dev HARmONIx / releaseD 2006 / score 8/10

hey dont really want you to


play Free Bird. Theyre just
heckling you. So it goes in
the original Guitar Hero, in
which, as you wait to strum some
blistering riffs, the loading screen
jokes about this twangy classic
that remains conspicuously absent
from the playlist. However, were
all familiar with the sequel mantra
by now bigger means better.
And rarely do guitar solos come
mightier than the monster found
in Lynyrd Skynyrds Free Bird.
You need to complete the career
mode on Normal, Hard or Expert to
unlock it, but when you do, prepare

for your fingers to reach speeds


theyll never come near again.
To begin with, the tune is
deceptively steady, a Calpol-sweet
mixture of long notes and simple
hammer-ons. You might even call
it sedate, as the cover versions
surprisingly adept singer builds up
to the moment you learn to fear,
when he croons, Lord knows,
I cannot change. All of a sudden,
a torrent of notes come flooding
down the screen.
Red, yellow and blue gems might
as well be one as your fingers
rapidly crash into buttons, the
track resembling a hospital heart

monitor with notes screaming past


at RSI-inducing speeds. As this
frenzy escalates, you then have
to contend with power chords
zooming at you. Frayed fingers
dance across the guitar like a
spider throwing shapes to Skrillex,
the song challenging you with
every type of pattern, just in case
youre not getting tired. (You are.)
Thankfully, with one final power
chord and wrists throbbing from
the most intense workout youll
ever give them (stop it), the song
reaches its final climax. *cough*
Youve definitely proven those
(non-existent) hecklers wrong.

Next
month
metal Gear
solid 3:
snake eater

The best boss


fight of all time.
Naked Snake
takes on The
Father Of
Sniping.

next
month

o n
S a l e
7 Jun
Subscribe on
page 66

FRee!
dualShock
light bar
decalS

Yooka-LaYLee

Behind-the-scenes look at Banjo-Kazooies sky-soaring,


tongue-whipping, fart-bubbling (really) successor

9000

9012

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