There was plenty to see at this year’s Rezzed at the NEC in Birmingham. A purely PC and indie gaming event, it was amazing to see so many indie developers showing their creativity on the show floor. Presentations throughout Saturday and Sunday provided an inside look at some of the games we can look forward to. Total War: Rome II demonstrated the kind of massive scale battles we can expect and it was great to see gameplay of Dreamfall Chapters. The next 12 months is going to be exciting for gamers.
The Leftfield Collection
This long white aisle at Rezzed was the indie alley of PC gaming. A large selection of games were on show with the most notable being the nurturing terraforming game called Reus, the underwater side scrolling game Luminesca and Hacker: The Movie Hacking Simulator. The object of Hacker is to bash the keys on your keyboard as fast as possible, just like they do in the movies. Later levels include avoiding certain keys during your finger hammering frenzy, as hitting these will set back your progress bar slightly. It’s completely nuts and extremely RSI inducing.
Total War: Rome II – The Creative Assembly
For what seems like an absolute eternity, Rome II is almost here. The live-code demo was presented to us by Al Bickham, as he takes charge of an Egyptian army. The most notable changes in the Total War series are the combination of land and sea battles on the same map. In the last Total War game Shogun II, these events were split into two separate instances but with co-op mode, your buddy can help you control your fleet or your army horde. The unit cam gives you a first person perspective of the utter destruction you inflict on your enemies; elephant cam here we come! The campaign map has been multiplied tenfold, with countries across Europe and Asia ready for the taking. The overall scale and breadth of this game is simply astounding, and I for one have already got my Collector’s Edition bagged and tagged (it comes with a working model of a catapult!).
Dreamfall Chapters – Red Thread Games
Ragnar Tornquist gives us an exclusive sneak peek at the progress being made with their Kickstarter game Dreamfall Chapters. Fans of the Dreamfall series will be delighted to see Zoe back on our screens, with a very pretty graphical uplift. Fret not as the Dreamfall feel is kept intact, with a cyberpunk future and mysterious fantasy world. The contextual snap discovery UI indicates objects of interest, but does not immediately shout for your attention which is a nice touch. Exploration and discovery of the game world is highly encouraged, with the player being rewarded for doing so. The choices you make will have consequences in the game, which is not always apparent… similar to TellTale Games’ The Walking Dead. The game is targeted for a November 2014 release, which seems eons away but it will be worth it.
DayZ Standalone – Dean Hall
What with ArmA III heading into the beta phase, the survival zombie-fest DayZ is also making some strides. Some progress has been made since E3 with the current build shown at Rezzed. Environmental conditions has been taken into account, such as sunshine and calorie count for your character which will affect your overall state of health. Combining raw materials can create new items for crafting abilities and the introduction of drawing blood from yourself or others can aid you later on. Be prepared to protect yourself from improvised explosives and also trashy 80s music from portable radios.