Games Archives

8-Bit Cinema: A Clockwork Orange

This 8-bit version of A Clockwork Orange is fairly decent, if you and your droogs go in for a little of the ol’ ultraviolence. The only thing this needs to make it perfect is a bit of the old Ludwig van…

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ComingSoon.net is reporting that Evergreen Studios is adapting David Weber’s Honor Harrington…and not just to film, but also in comic book, digital game, webisode, and television series formats.

Tales of Honor is what they’re calling their multi-platform adaptation, and no word yet on which part of the Honorverse — which includes dozens of novels and anthologies — will be adapted.

The Honor Harrington military science fiction series is named after its principal protagonist, Honor Harrington. She’s an intelligent, genetically engineered officer in the Royal Manticoran Navy of an interstellar monarchy, and she see lots of action and makes lots of enemies. Through a series of adventurous missions, Honor advances through the ranks, playing the roles of military heroine and later, an influential politician. The series, intentionally re-imagined as “Horatio Hornblower in space”, is set 2,000 years in the future when hyperspace travel allows humanity to colonize deep space.

The end of the year is often a time of reflection and, more importantly, list making!

Help us compile a list of the best genre video games of the year by telling us which science fiction, fantasy and/or horror games were your favorites. These do not have to necessarily be video games that were originally released this year — we are more interested in the best games that you played for the first time in 2013.

Sound off in the comments!

Help Worldbuilders! Donate $5 or More for 3 or More Games

Worldbuilders is a charity run by New York Times Best-Selling author Patrick Rothfuss in support of international poverty aid charity Heifer International. Regularly pulling in support from an all-star cast of writers, geek icons, and musicians, Worldbuilders has raised millions for charity since 2008, giving readers and fans of fantasy a chance to help participate in making the world a better place while getting something fun for their efforts.

GOG.com, the DRM-free digital distributor of the best games in history for PC and Mac has launched its first-ever charity action on the service. After recently celebrating 5 years in business, after building one of the largest hardcore gaming communities on the ‘Net, and after all of the success and growth it has achieved, the company has decided it is time to give back.
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VIDEO: Nintendo + Star Wars = Super Smash Wars!


Here’s a well-done parody of Stars Wars done in the style of an old-school Ninetndo 64 game.
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[GUEST POST] The Making of Timothy Zahn’s PARALLAX Game


Abram Jablonski is a Senior Software Engineer/Architect that specializes in highly-dynamic data-driven applications. He has been developing software for over 15 years now in the Department of Defense and commercial sectors, and has been involved with numerous projects related to the implementation or support of high-tech systems. As his first full-scale (but still very indie) commercial venture, he is developing a new 4X game in partnership with legendary Star Wars author Timothy Zahn.

Returning to Orion

by Abram Jablonski

I’ve always loved Master of Orion. Even before I started programming, I’ve wanted to do something similar. The original was great, and I’m one of the smaller percentage of people that think it was even better than the sequel (apparently, nobody really liked the third one). I’ve got the original on my laptop right now – a $6 copy I got from GOG.com and that I run on DOSBox – and I’ve still got a dog-eared copy of the instruction booklet from when I first bought the game, too.

Wanting to make that game has been something that I’ve carried with me for more than a decade and a half now. Jotting down notes, tables, sketches, diagrams and lists of things for the game, but for most of that time I didn’t have the right skills and tools to actually complete it. If that had been all I had focused on for a couple of years, I would have been able to do it, but I wouldn’t have actually been ready, because there are a lot of things that just take time to truly understand (as opposed to only learning them). I did write other stuff, though: from little utilities, to highly-dynamic data-handling architectures, to software that was run at different sites all over the world to field test a globe-spanning system. And it’s been fun, and challenging, and rewarding.
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GAME TRAILER: Neil Gaiman’s Wayward Manor

Neil Gaiman is a lot things: author, TV writer and all-around hoopy frood. Now he can add video game designer to his resume. Neil, along with development house The Odd Gentleman are working on a new video game called Wayward Manor. But what’s it about? This:

The game’s story stretches hundreds of years, following a ghost trying to figure out why he was killed and by whom. In the process, the clueless phantom tries to scare away every new squatter that has taken up residence in his 1920s home.

A new trailer for the game has just arrived, take a gander at the teaser!

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Sunday Cinema: 8 Bits

Here’s an imaginative short film that pits our video game hero against the Evil Boss that wants to shed his 8-bit life. Can our hero restore the 8-bit nature of the world? Watch this cool video and find out.

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Kaiju Kickstarters (Part One): RARRR!! A Monster-Building, City-Crushing Card Game

You may have noticed my absence from SF Signal lately – lets face it, you’ve missed me. And I’ve missed you! But I promise I haven’t been idle in my absence. In fact, I’ve been working on the coolest project I’ve ever been involved in. I am the Project Creator and Acquisitions Manager of the exciting KAIJU RISING: Age of Monsters anthology, brought to you by Ragnarok Publications. KAIJU RISING: Age of Monsters features 19 authors and includes a foreword by New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Maberry and an afterword by Jeremy Robinson, author of the popular kaiju novel Project Nemesis. We’re running a campaign over at Kickstarter in order to fund the anthology and as I write this we are at 80% of our funding goal in just over a week.

One of the coolest things that has come from running the KAIJU RISING: Age of Monsters campaign has been making connections with all these other cool projects. One such project is the monster-building, city-crushing card game RARRR!!, from APE Games.

“In RARRR!!, players build monsters (kaiju), each with its own set of terrifying powers. Then they battle each other until only one monster remains to rampage through the city! Cities are worth victory points, and the player with the most points at the end of the game wins! Strategy is required in every aspect of the game, from building the monster that best suits you to drafting power cards (see the gameplay video below for details on how to draft) to picking which cities to battle for.”

In a cross promotional effort Kevin Brusky of APE Games has set aside some of his precious time to conduct a two-way interview. In Part One I will pose to Kevin questions about his totally awesome game RARRR!! and in Part Two Kevin will perform the role of interrogator and get the scoop on KAIJU RISING: Age of Monsters.

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Edward Willett writes science fiction, fantasy, nonfiction and plays. He won the Aurora Award for best Canadian science fiction novel in 2009 for Marseguro (DAW). As Lee Arthur Chane he wrote the steampunkish fantasy Magebane, and as E.C. Blake he’s the author of a new fantasy trilogy beginning this fall with Masks (also DAW). He lives in Regina, Saskatchewan. He can be found online at his website EdwardWillett.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter as @EWillett, @LeeArthurChane & @AuthorECBlake.

Playing Nicely With Others: A Novelist Writes for a Computer Game

By Edward Willett

When I was a kid, I was forever disappointed by my fellow children. I always wanted to play a long-running game of detailed make-believe, in which we would each be a specific character and have wonderful adventures repelling aliens, fighting Nazis, guarding a castle, or maybe event fighting Nazi aliens from the walls of a castle.

They wanted to play Yahtzee.
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The omnipresent Neil Gaiman is stretching his wings even further. Gaiman is set to launch his first video game, called Wayward Manor.

Sez Mashable:

The game follows the misadventures of a ghost who wants nothing more than a peaceful afterlife, and to kick out the motley crew living in the house he once called home. A gothic New England estate is the setting, with the storyline running from the 1920s all the way to the not-too-distant future. As the ghost tries harder and harder to get rid of the squatters, he also unravels the mystery of his own death and the after-life.

The game will be available for game players this fall on PC, Mac, and tablet platforms. As part of the release, Gaiman is also “offering fans a pre-sale opportunity that includes limited-edition merchandise, the chance to name a game character, and even a private dinner with Gaiman.”

UPDATE: Here’s a video teaser from Neil…
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Conan O’Brien is the Clueless Gamer in a series of videos where he reviews video games. Here, Conan Reviews Injustice: Gods Among Us, in which DC superheroes and villains (and a surprise guest hero) battle for supremacy.

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6 Free To Play (Or Almost) MMOs For SF/F Fans

A few short years ago, any massively multiplayer online (MMO) game worth it’s salt followed in the footsteps of the MMO behemoth World of Warcraft, both in terms of content (fantasy themed, quest oriented) and in method of payment (monthly fee). Flash forward to today and there are several big name properties that have gone the free-to-play (F2P) route in an effort not just to differentiate themselves but also to boost flagging sales. We’ve put together a list of 6 of these MMOs that are of interest to the SF/F fan who is interested in exploring these types of games, but isn’t interested in shelling out a lot money.
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[GUEST POST] Jaym Gates Reports on the East Coast Game Conference


Jaym Gates is an editor, author and publicist, as well as the Communications Director for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. She has work appearing in the Chicks Dig Gaming anthology (out in November) and the Origins Writers Track anthology. More information can be found at jaymgates.com, or follow her on Twitter as @JaymGates.

Conference Report: East Coast Game Conference

East Coast Game Conference is a yearly video game industry convention held in Raleigh, North Carolina, in April. The conference, in its fifth year, schedules seven simultaneous tracks on subjects from Mobile Games to Education and provides video game professionals, academics and upcoming developers with an engaging program and opportunities for networking and collaboration. The conference is presented by the Triangle Game Initiative, a non-profit trade association of video game companies in North Carolina and the International Game Developers Association, a non-profit trade association of video game developers.

At the core of the two-day conference are seven simultaneous tracks of talks and panels covering a wide range of game development topics appealing to programmers, artists, designers, producers, students, academics and business executives.

I first heard about the conference from writer Richard Dansky, who invited me to attend the brand-new Writing track he was organizing. I seldom attend panels, but Rich teased me with some of the things he was going to have scheduled, and I couldn’t resist.
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GAME REVIEW: Mage Wars (Arcane Wonders)


One of the tabletop games I discovered late last year was Mage Wars. It’s a two-player game where each player takes on the role of a powerful Mage, using their Mana to summon creatures and cast spells, in an attempt to reduce the opposing Mage to zero life. That initial pitch might sound like Magic: The Gathering, and the influence of that game is evident. But there are a lot of innovations in the rules (which I’ll discuss below) which distinguish it from the famous Collectible Card Game (CCG) and other tabletop games.

Here’s one game mechanic that fits with the theme and is ripe for deep strategy: during the Planning Phase of every turn, players pick two spells from their spellbook. The spellbook is a four-card binder (a pair comes with the game) composed of cards you chose to comprise your deck. Every round, it feels like roleplaying when you rifle through your spellbook, looking for the appropriate spell to cast later in the game. Because you’re choosing which two spells to cast, there’s no randomness when it comes to determining what your options are. On the other hand, because you’re selecting only two spells, you’re limited when it comes to reacting to the cards your opponent plays this turn: if you want to reverse or foil your opponent’s plans, you need to pick in advance the spell you think you’ll need.
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I think is a commerical for some new Star Trek videogame. Whatevs…

It’s got William Shatner fighting a Gorn!

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The ten thousand hour principle states that after you put 10,000 hours into anything you’re an expert. Jason Anarchy has 10,000 hours of experience creating Comedy RPG game systems. He made his first game when he was eight years old (A Legend of Zelda tabletop game called Gannon’s Bad Day) and in the last couple years professionally developing the first two Drinking Quest games. He has 10,000 hours invested in Business Management (Game Industry and Newspaper Media) Not quite 10,000 hours of drinking yet but close.

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LOST: The RPG!

Here’s a video that captures the essence of TV’s LOST…told the way it meant to be told: as a classic videogame RPG.

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The end of the year is often a time of reflection and, more importantly, list making!

Help us compile a list of the best genre video games of the year by telling us which science fiction, fantasy and/or horror games were your favorites. These do not have to necessarily be video games that were originally released this year — we are more interested in the best games that you played for the first time in 2012.

Sound off in the comments!

Publisher Pyr and miniature games manufacturer Privateer Press have teamed up to publish novels based on Warmachine steam-powered fantasy wargame and the world of the Iron Kingdoms Role Playing Game: in Thunder Forged: The Iron Kingdoms Chronicles by Ari Marmell and Big Iron: The Iron Kingdoms Chronicles by C.A. Suleiman.

Press release follows…
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