Wednesday, 9 July 2008

THIS BLOG IS CLOSED

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Tuesday, 13 May 2008

PSP Homebrew

Homebrew is the raving rebel community that thrives to make your PSP stretch beyond its capabilities and do things that you never thought your PSP would do. Games, utility software, and a lot of other applications are coded and made underground so as to make your PSP a truly versatile animal. It is much like an open source community full of enthusiastic PSP aficionados.

However, Homebrew isn’t a new phenomenon. It started with the now ubiquitous PC– in the form of freeware and shareware applications– and then moved on to many other systems. More recently we have homebrew communities for the iPhone, Gameboy Advance, Xbox, cell phones, and every other gadget ever made. Sony’s Playstation Portable has plenty of these stealth developers working away furiously on a wide range of Interesting applications.

Source: http://news.psp-downloads.biz/news/335/psp-homebrew-a-primer.html

MacHeist Retail Bundle

The team behind the MacHeist software promotions has announced a new retail bundle. The bundle of Mac shareware applications can be purchased directly from the MacHeist site for $50, and, if all goes according to plan, will be available in stores later this year. If you missed out on the online deals earlier this year, or if you want to fill out your collection of software packaging materials, the MacHeist retail bundle is your friend.

So far the details are a bit thin, but it doesn’t appear that the retail bundle will feature any additional MacHeist-style shenanigans. However, as with other MacHeist efforts, 25 percent of the purchase price will go to select charities. The team has also produced a slick, high-quality video teaser for MacHeist's retail release.

Source: http://blog.wired.com/monkeybites/2008/04/macheist-retail.html

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Big Bang Brain Games

From the people who brought you the fantastic 'Hoards of Orcs' comes "Big Bang Brain Games" - a brain training suite of mini 'puzzle' games wrapped in a 3D engine to keep you on your toes and at the computer; monging out almost completely while paradoxically expanding your brain capacity and giggle like a school girl at the comedic touches this studio seem to lace their productions with. Big Brain Games consists of six games in total; Echo, an audio memory game, Fallacy, a logic game, NovaSweeper, which is Mine Sweeper with nobs and bells, Reaction, a fantastic little logic game (reminds me, for some reason, of the classic e-motion for you old timers out there) , Remembrance the classic card game (turn them up to match etc) and of course what brain training application would be complete without Sudoku!?

Remembrance is the classic memory card game; with a hot chick. Click her. She loves it.

The games are all pretty good; I especially like Fallacy and Remembrance which keep me entertained for longer stretches of time (not being natural Sudoku player, ie. I'm number retarded) but all the titles are great efforts which look and sound great. The presentation of this game is nothing short of immaculate, for mini games the whole atmosphere (and the bizarre random duck) really draw you in from the get go. Which in SGR's book, is a very good thing!

Great stuff.

Summary:

Six great brain training puzzle games which look, sound and play great. If you like this kinda thing, then this game delivers by the truck load.

Where Can I Get It?

http://www.freeverse.com/games/game/?id=6003

SGR Rating:


80%

New Players Join Indie Scene

Independent video-game makers used to be the starving artists of the gaming world. Rather than taking cushy jobs at major companies, they lived off measly donations to create what they saw as a better, more innovative product.

No longer. Independent game makers are coming of age, thanks to new distribution methods that bring quirky, original games right into people's living rooms. And the indie scene is flourishing, just like it has in movies and music.

"We're much more high-profile than we used to be," said Phil Fish, a Montreal game designer whose game Fez, while unfinished, is being courted by large game publishers eager to tap into the indie scene.

Source: http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/business/story.html?93306

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Indie Mobile, Next Big Thing

Easy to pick up, easy to play, the mobile casual game is the perfect distraction to entertain us while waiting for the next train or a late friend. Likened to a "game snack," the casual game requires little commitment and minimum investment-meaning players should never have to resort to reviewing a tutorial or have to free up hours in their schedule to get through a game.

At the console level, everyone from Nintendo to Ubisoft and Electronic Arts has put increased interest in the casual, pick-up-and-play game as a way to reach a wider base beyond the core gaming demographic. The personal and virtually ubiquitous qualities of the mobile phone make it an ideal platform for the casual game, letting us fill up small slices of time-both at home and away from home-with little commitment.

More and more, we're seeing that mobile casual games are indeed for everyone. Women outnumber men in terms of numbers and revenue for mobile gaming. And mobile gamers encompass a broader age range than the typical console gamer.

The next logical stage is the democratization of game design-where just as anyone can play games, anyone can now create games. User-generated games tap into the seemingly universal human desire for creative self-expression-as well as sharing those creations within a wider community. Whether it's in the form of video, music, or text, social networking and self-content sites have become a mainstay in today's Internet, as the consumer becomes content-provider.

Source: http://www.gamesondeck.com/feature/3533/editorial_user_generated_mobile_.php

Intel-Sponsored Amateur Tilt

Intel Technology Philippines, in partnership with the Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDAP) and the Creative Media and Film Society of the Philippines (CreaM), recently organized the Pinoy Indie Games Competition, the country’s first on-the-spot, non-stop, three-day game development challenge.

First scheduled on 1-3 February, 2008, the event drew 15 amateur teams, each looking to make history by winning the first Pinoy Indie Games Championship.

"We are very thrilled with the outcome of the event, which gave the 15 participating teams an opportunity to showcase their expertise in the field of game development," says Intel Philippines Country Manager Ricky Banaag. "The local game development scene will definitely be on the upswing with these new talents soon coming in."

Source: http://www.mb.com.ph/INFO20080415121842.html

Gimmie Indie Games

Gaming may be a multi-bazillion dollar biz based on ever-advancing technology, but the definitive moment at the recent Game Developer’s Conference came courtesy of brightly coloured balloons. Real ones.

During February’s annual gather in San Francisco, a number of game gurus participated in a public rant session. Most offered the expected gripes — one challenged peers to add emotion to their programs; another complained about internet-fuelled fan overreactions; a third demanded intellectual titles for adult gamers. But what will be remembered was Jonathan Mak’s “rant.” The 25-year-old Torontonian — and CEO of one-man company Queasy Games — simply handed out balloons covered in slogans like “1point” and “I am a misunderstood robot." Instead of nodding in agreement or shaking heads in communal disgust, the crowd just started playing. With no instruction, little money and staggeringly simplistic gameplay, Mak had created instant joy.

The unspoken lesson was equally simple — you don’t need a big budget triple-A title to give gamers the fun they crave. He should know; after all Mak’s trigger-happy music game Everyday Shooter, a homemade interactive rock album where each shot essentially adds a song element, has become a hit download for Sony’s PS3 and one of the flagships of the indie gaming scene, a DIY movement that has unexpectedly exploded with the arrival of the now-gen consoles.

Source: http://www.exclaim.ca/articles/csid1=120&csid2=807&fid1=30380

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Hordes of Orcs

First things first; this game is freakin' awesome. No doubt, it's a winner. As is so often the case simplicity and twisted humour wins the day again with us simple SGR reviewer folk. Hordes of Orcs is a game of castle defense and tower carnage, we've all seen these before, but this one is better than the vast majority. It sounds good, looks great and plays like a dream - it's addictive to digital crack levels too.

For the uneducated and otherwise tower-defense-ignorant we'll explain what Hordes Of Orcs entails; wave after wave of progressively more hardcore Orcs stream forth from a glowing portal (the developers suggest the village elders in the game's castle call "The Glowing Portal of Really Bad Things That We Should Have Bricked-Up a Long Time Ago", Terry Pratchett like referencing FTW!) your mission is thus clear and succinct, stop the big green nasty Orc types from reaching your castle and doing whatever it is such creatures do when they sack castles, presumably rape/eat/pillage/smell bad/make the place look untidy etc.

There is nothing like the smell of flaming Orc in the morning.

It's not often I become addicted to a game while still sitting in my boxer shorts before my morning cup of tea, but today I did. Hordes of Orcs sucked me right in immediately. The strategic element of tower placing and 'which towers to place where' should not be underestimated by a casual observer, if you want it to be, this is a very in depth game as well as a fantastic novelty. Indeed, even as I write this I am actually just thinking about where best to place my flame turrets the next time I play. Hordes of Orcs is hard casual gaming at it's best.

And Hordes of Orcs doesn't stop there with just the classic 'castle defense mode', indeed it has lots of other game modes, including Capture the Flag; because as the game points it "every game is better with a capture the flag mode". They couldn't be more correct. As if this game needed more lastability, here it comes steaming in with yet more ways to enjoy it. Hordes of Orcs boastsa massive six game modes; Open Warfare, Crossroads, Capture The Flag, Maze Defense, gem Drop and Pachinko - all as entertaining as each other.


video
"Kill the Orcs, slay the Orcs, destroy the Orcs!" - 3 Inches of Blood lyrics go well with this game.

I think you are probably getting that it plays great and is generally going down quite well here at SGR... well kids we know you now expect us to point out some massive flaw or problem we found that the game play over comes nonetheless, well, not this time, the creators of Hordes Of Orcs don't disappoint on any level, it really does looks great too. There is something deeply satisfying about setting your defenses and zooming in to "3D mode" and watching as the various Orcs, all of whom are modelled fantastically, are set alight/radiated/frozen or simply shot at with a hail of arrows.

A lot of work has gone into the style of this game; there is something humorous at it's very core and it's good. We love the funky music track which permeates in the background as well. Damn it, there isn't anything we don't love about this game!

Just, go buy it, we wanna play more...

Summary:

Stop the Orcs doing whatever it is Orcs do using a variety of wicked awesome weapons and spells in a variety of different game modes. You really can't go wrong with this game, we can't find a single flaw in it's logic. The best game we've reviewed this year. Addictive, entertaining, looks great - it can even be run in a window and played when you should be working. Fantastic stuff all around.

Where Can I Get It?

http://freeverse.com/games/game/?id=7019

SGR Rating:


98%

Friday, 4 April 2008

7Seas Tech Bags Honours

7Seas Technologies Limited, a Hyderabad-based independent game development company, has bagged the prestigious FICCI-BAF (Best of Animation Frames) award for its ‘Mouse Maze’ game in the ‘Best Online Game category’, for 2008. The FICCI-BAF awards received a total of 406 entries in 17 categories from 14 countries.

The award was received by Maruti Sanker, managing director of 7Seas Technologies, at the two-day FICCI FRAMES-2008 that concluded in Mumbai on March 26, 2008.

Mouse Maze, an online game launched by 7Seas Technologies in January 2008 that ignites creativity and enhance concentration of the gamers, is presently available on the company’s www.onlinerealgames.com and leading portals of over 50 aggregators worldwide.

Commenting on the award, Maruti Sanker said, “We are delighted to share the stage along with industry majors such as Microsoft Games, which won two awards in the ‘Best PC Game’ and ‘Best Console Game’ categories. The FICCI-BAF award for 7Seas Technologies’ Mouse Maze showed the company’s technological capabilities to the world besides increasing our responsibilities in creating more such quality games for the international game lovers.”

Full Article: http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=131618

Credits & Information

2008 The Shareware Game Review - To contact us please email sharewaregamereview [at] hushmail.com.