Coatsink  Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Coatsink  RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Augmented Empire Launches Mini-Documentary Mon, 30 Oct 2017 11:16:49 -0400 Allison M Reilly

Coatsink, the studio behind cyberpunk RPG Augmented Empire, released a mini-documentary to YouTube.

The mini-documentary features voice actors Kate Mulgrew as 'Jules' ("Star Trek: Voyager", "Orange is the New Black"), Nick Frost as 'Chris' ("Shaun of the Dead", "Hot Fuzz") and Doug Cockle as 'Mund' (The Witcher: Wild Hunt, Horizon: Zero Dawn). The three of them discuss their characters and the experience of voicing them.

"The whole team's extremely proud of what we achieved with Augmented Empire and we're thrilled with the passion and talent of the actors involved."

- Jon Davies, Narrative Designer

Augmented Empire takes place in the city of New Savannah, where players play the game as Craven. Craven is one of two detectives who are protecting Willa, the game's heroine who's just been outcast from the city's high society. The game also has turn-based combat and 26 missions where players can pick up new team members and explore 60 different environments.

Augmented Empire is exclusively for the Samsung Gear VR. It is out now and available for $9.99. 

New DLC and PS Vita Release Announced for Platformer Shu Fri, 14 Apr 2017 10:57:43 -0400 ESpalding

At the latter end of last year, Sunderland-based indie developer Coatsink released its hand-drawn platform adventure Shu on PC and PS4 -- with the hope of releasing on PS Vita at some point this year. Now the company has announced that this will be happening on May 23rd.

Coinciding with the Vita launch, Coatsink will also be adding a ton of new content in the game's first DLC, called "Caverns of the Nightjars". The DLC will come in two stages on Steam, but it will be released on PS4/Vita in full on May 23rd. 

New areas to explore

The first half of the DLC will include 3 new levels called Beneath the Ruins, No Turning Back, and Depths of Discovery. It will also add new character combinations, more collectibles, new achievements, and new time trial records to beat. This first part is available now for players on Steam and is free.

The second part of the DLC will introduce another three levels, and will be released on the same day as the game (and its DLC) arrives in full on the PS Vita.

Find out how different characters interact with others

If you want to know more about Shu, check out the high scoring review we did for it! And stay tuned to GameSkinny for more info on the DLC once it all comes out.

Coatsink Announces New VR Title Coming This Year Thu, 02 Mar 2017 04:29:56 -0500 ESpalding

This week, acclaimed Sunderland-based studio Coatsink has announced that their latest VR title, Augmented Empire, will be releasing later this year. This new title is a story-driven tactical RPG set in a neo-noir city on a fictional island called New Savannah. While the release date isn't confirmed, the studio has said that the game will be exclusively launched on Samsung Gear VR.

Augmented Empire sees players coming to grips with a society built on a citizen grading system. While the rich people live a life of luxury, the lower class citizens live in squalor and undesirable conditions. There is a revolution happening and you are the mastermind behind it all. Players must take control of augmented beings and help, or hinder, both sides.

Coatsink are no strangers to VR games. In 2015 they released adventure puzzler Esper, which was a launch title for Samsung Gear VR, with a follow up, Esper 2, later that year. Both games went to gain lots of praise and award nominations so there is no doubt that this new game is following in great footsteps.

Augmented Empire will be hitting the PAX East show floor on March 10th, and then be heading out to multiple events throughout the rest of this year -- including EGX Rezzed in London and the Pyrkon Festival in Poland.

We'll bring you all the information on the new game as it is announced so make sure you check back here regularly for the latest developments!

Shu, Face the Oncoming Storm Mon, 07 Nov 2016 06:00:01 -0500 ESpalding

At this year's EGX expo, I had the pleasure of chatting with the guys from Sunderland-based indie developers, Coatsink, and was introduced to a new platform game called Shu. At the time it was still in development but the game was released to the general public on October 4th and is available on PC (via Steam), PS4 and PS Vita.

This beautifully hand-drawn game harks back to the golden age of platform games and sees the titular character, Shu, fleeing from a huge oncoming storm which threatens to destroy everything around him and his village. As he journeys through different levels of different landscapes, he comes across other people from his village who join him in his quest to get away from the storm and try to put an end to it.

Unique abilities

One of the most interesting things about this game, for me, is the gameplay mechanics. As Shu progresses through the levels, he hooks up with other people from his village. When I say they 'hook up,' I mean literally -- not sexily. They hold hands and carry on running. This leads to a very interesting mechanic because each character has their own unique ability.

Shu, who is always the leader in the chain, is able to make his poncho into something akin to a parachute which allows him to glide and catch the air streams to propel them forward. There is another character, called Lati, who has the ability to open and close budding flowers which create additional platforms when open or the musical Okoro whose whistle allows you to dance on water. So based on which villagers you find, this determines the abilities you get to play with. I love this aspect of the game. It means that it is never the same and you constantly have something new to play with.

Zero combat

That's right, there is absolutely no combat in this game. No hopping onto a baddie's head to knock him out or throwing fireballs to kill them as there are no baddies. Well... other than the storm, that is. Each level is just a series of little puzzles to overcome using the characters special abilities. You just have to get through the levels, as fast as you can if you want, and that's it.

Hand-drawn loveliness

The art style of Shu really is one of the games best selling points. It has all been hand-drawn and this adds to the unique look and feel of the game. Each of the characters are distinctly different and kind of in line with their special abilities. These kooky characters combined with the well-designed 3D background artwork makes for a vivid game which is appealing and, I find, it draws you into the game. I have shown this game to my 5-year-old daughter and she instantly wanted to play with because "it looks pretty."

Short but sweet

Shu only has sixteen stages and it can take a little as a few hours to reach the end credits, but that doesn't mean that there is a lack of things to do in the game. As with many other games in this genre, there are collectables to find and, for the competitive among us, there are speed runs, time trials, and high scores to chase. To be honest, given that the game has been entirely hand-drawn, any more levels could detract from the game overall experience. I think that this is so good that I would rather play a shorter, much more polished off game than one that is longer, kind of mediocre and still rough around the edges.


I honestly think that Shu is one of the best indie games of the year. I'm not just saying that for the hell of it but I thoroughly enjoyed playing this game and I can't really find fault in it! The characters are endearing, the story is charming, the artwork is awesome and the gameplay is far from dull. What is there not to like? It is also a family game, which is something that is high on my list of requirements for most games.

For anyone interested in the game, you can download a demo for the PC version via Steam. Make sure you come back here and let us know what you think!

Shu was provided for review by developer Coatsink.

EGX 2016: Day 3 - Do Something You Have Never Done Before Wed, 28 Sep 2016 14:15:08 -0400 ESpalding

Today was a day of firsts. Whether it was the first experience of something or being part of the first to try something new (as with many of the indie games there this weekend), it was a day that I will remember for... well... forever, possibly.

My Mom is a Witch

This game was my first demo of the day, and it was a really enjoyable game. Hailing from Novi Sad in Serbia, developers Bigosaur presented the visitors at EGX with an action adventure multiplayer game based in a medieval setting but done using very cartoony graphics. My Mom is a Witch has a lot of roguelike elements in it as well as drawing inspiration from titles such as Castle Crushers.

The game is not ready to release just yet but, from what the developer told me, the end product will give players the chance to choose from 7 different classes to play, about 20 different bosses, hundreds of items and weapons to pick up, and will play along six distinctly different themed levels. The game uses procedural generation, so no game will ever have the same appearance.

I really enjoyed playing the game and the multiplayer demo with the developer. I do see some great things for this game. It isn't overly straightforward though -- it's easy to learn, but difficult to truly get the hang of.


Oh yeah! I did it! I played Yooka-Laylee, and it was marvelous! This is a game that I, like so many others, have been waiting for for such a long time. Ever since the last installment Banjo-Kazooie, fans have wanted another game in the same style. So when a bunch of key personnel from Rare decided to form their own studio, Playtonic Games, and create a new game, there was immediately a lot of excitement among followers.

The game uses a lot of imagery and ideas from previous games, but sees a new character duo attempting to stop two new nasty enemies -- Capital B and Dr. Quack -- from consuming the world's literature to turn into profit. Players control a chameleon called Yooka and his female bat friend, Laylee, as they have to go through a series of puzzles, and they must collect many different items from around their 3D platform world as the game goes on.

As of yet, there are no details on a release date but what we do know is that it is going to be available on PC, Mac, Linux, Xbox One, PS4, and Wii U, and the estimated date for release will be sometime in Spring 2017.

Dawn of War III

Yeah, I was so pleased I got to play Dawn of War III. I am a massive Warhammer 40k fan and have played Dawn of War since day one so a new installment of the series always fills me with glee. Relic Entertainment, the developers, have done it again!

The main premise for DoW III is a three-way conflict between the Space Marines, the Orks and the Eldar, who have all made their way to a planet called Acheron when a mysterious "mega" weapon has been discovered. The Space Marines are led by the Chapter Master of the Blood Ravens, Gabriel Angelos, who has been part of the DoW series since the first game so has the leader of the Ork army, the Warlord Gorgutz (or rather his full name Gorgutz 'Ead 'Unter). The Eldar are led by the Farseer Macha from the Biel-Tan craftworld, who has, so far, only appeared in the first DoW game.

There isn't much to say about the gameplay in DoW III if you already know about the previous games. They are your normal real-time strategy game in which you control and build an army to aid you in completing the missions. There is currently no definite 2017 date for the release of Dawn of War III, but we will let you know as soon as we know.


This stand was always occupied whenever I walked past it. This animal themed fighter is bright, colorful, and very reminiscent of the Smash Bros games -- so no wonder it was drawing in the crowds! It is being developed by Angry Mob Games who have predominately been responsible for developing mobile games, such as Alien vs. Predator: Evolution and Predators, but are now heading out into the land of consoles with Brawlout.

The game can be played by 2 - 8 people, either online or locally, and sees players taking the role of a representative from a particular race. As of writing this, there have been five characters announced -- Chief Feathers (Native American), Sephi'ra (Egyptian), Olaf Tyson (Scandinavian) Gancho Puncho (Mexican), and King Apu (Hindu).

"We're all fighting game fans, so we've built our dream platform fighter. We've heard what players miss from classic fighters and what they love about new ones, and Brawlout is designed to give people the best of both worlds, whether that's ruining friendships around the TV or going online to anger strangers in tournaments."

--Bogdan Iliesiu, CEO of Angry Mob Games

Brawlout is due for release sometime in Q1 of 2017.


Shu is your typical platform adventure. The graphics of the game have been lovingly hand-drawn, and the gameplay is just as lovely. You play a character called Shu who is trying to escape a world which is being torn apart by a monstrous storm. He is helped along the way by some friends -- and the beauty of it is that you control all of the friends running away with Shu at the same time.

Shu himself has a cloak which can catch on the wind and propel you forward. He has a friend who can smash rocks, and another friend who controls the blossoming of flowers. The characters are holding hands as they run, which kind of makes one whole character as you utilize their gifts whenever you need them.

It is being developed by Sunderland-based studio Coatsink and is scheduled to release on October 4th. It will be available on PS4 and PC (via Steam) and is due also to be available on PS Vita in Q4 2016.


When I said at the beginning of this piece that it would contain some firsts well... Windlands was my first ever try at a VR game. I loved it! I have to give some serious kudos to the boss of Psytec Games. He took a great deal of time talking to me about VR, what to expect, and the ways the game can be altered to make the experience kinder on my body. He even stopped a few people, with me stood next to him, to ask questions about their experience just to put me at ease. This helped me immensely, and as a result, I will always remember the first time I tried VR and which game it was.

So, Windlands is a first person grappling hook VR exploration game. You must use your hooks to hold onto things to make you swing through the world, á la Tarzan. There is zero combat involved, and you can either play at a leisurely pace, just swinging around and exploring the world or you can indulge your competitive side and start doing speed runs and time trials.

The game is available now on Steam for PC and Mac OS.

Snake Pass

When I hear about a game that allows you to play a snake, you can bet your bottom dollar that I will be there. I love snakes! Snake Pass definitely did not let me down. This game, developed and published by Sumo Digital, is visually stunning, and great detail has been taken to develop a control system, which really makes you think like a snake. It was the brainchild of a guy called Seb Liese, who originally joined the team to work on Little Big Planet but ended up developing this little gem.

You play a snake called Noodle, and it is your job to collect the gems around your world by completely physical puzzles which require you to use all your snakey movements to overcome them. As you slither, coil, and squeeze your way to victory, you are helped along by a friendly hummingbird who will aid you in your time of need by picking up your tail to stop it from weighing you down over obstacles.

There is currently no information about a possible release date or which platforms it will be playable on.

So, that's it for what I got done on day three at EGX. Just one more day to report on!