Spiders Tagged Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Spiders RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network The Technomancer Review: Telling a compelling story, giving stylish combat https://www.gameskinny.com/lslbu/the-technomancer-review-telling-a-compelling-story-giving-stylish-combat https://www.gameskinny.com/lslbu/the-technomancer-review-telling-a-compelling-story-giving-stylish-combat Tue, 28 Jun 2016 04:04:13 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

While playing The Technomancer, developed by Spiders, I was worried about what to write. It has very good combat, if a bit repetitive at times, very smooth animations that sometimes run a bit long, and interesting story and decent writing. Yet it has long awkward pauses, an extensive upgrade tree, and sometimes feels like there is just too much.

Despite all of the caveats, which are mostly due to a limited budget, I would recommend The Technomancer to anyone who likes action RPGs -- similar to, but not, The Witcher and Mass Effect.

The Technomancer, mars, zacharia

The Witcher meets Mass Effect, but isn't them

Set on Mars, The Technomancer follows the revolutionary exploits of Zachariah Mancer -- Mancer being the name given to all Technomancers. You start out as an initiate, but you very quickly become a Technomancer. By doing so you learn a secret, one which plays a pivotal role in a few decisions you must make. Along the way you make friends, enemies, and neutrally solve differences -- bribes. 

I found myself disliking one specific character, not because the game told me so, but because I didn't like the methods he was taking to keep his city safe -- but I understood why he had to be a harsh sometimes. In fact, while helping him out, to gain his trust. There is a moment in the The Technomancer where you ask for help from various people, when I asked this character for help he refused, saying he did not trust me enough. This was after routing out several spying factions from his home, you could say I was upset, and angry.

The Technomancer, mars, technomancer

Companions

The ones who follow you are not your ordinary bunch of followers. You have an eccentric father figure scientist -- not crazy, just different -- a very forward female rover explorer, a giant intelligent mutant, a plucky rogue named Lucky, and a slightly away with the fairies but complicated character who you first meet as a princess. Each one has their own backstory, and quests.

Most of these quests revolve around finding, and beating up people they hate. The most interesting of these centers around the rover driver, Amelia Reacher, whose father disappeared. You can choose -- and of course I did -- to help her or not, by doing so you discover her father's disappearance is linked to another in your crew. It's a rather interesting twist, which I didn't expect.

The Technomancer, mars, dome

Locations

You start in the first city of Mars, Ophir. A pristine city, with a hidden dark side of corruption, slavery, and abusing the down trodden in the slums. Through circumstances out of your control you are forced to flee Ophir, from here you explore new cities, and ancient domes. While uncovering the secrets of Mars, and of your own order, the Technomancers. Each city looks very different from the last, but I found the domes all look rather similar. Even the final 'most impressive dome', looks and feels the same as the previous ones, it is just bigger. But, this all could just be because they were built at similar times by early Mars settlers.

One specific location, in Ophir, called The Underworld is particularly annoying. It's a twisting maze that you are forced to navigate many times to get to different places in Ophir. Each time you pass through it every enemy respawns, which leads to traveling around taking a very long time. The same applies to each location in Ophir, only The Underworld doesn't allow you to run away from combat due to ladders, and ledges you have to climb -- which you can't when in combat.

The Technomancer, mars, sun, lighting

Upgrade trees, and combat

There are 4 main upgrade trees:

  • Warrior, which applies to staff combat for crowd control and area attack.
  • Rogue, which enables the use of a knife and gun for fast intelligent combat.
  • Guardian, which effects the use of club/hammer and shield wielding for a more defence orientated setup. The only stance which allows you block.
  • Technomancer, which is reserved to grant you the most powerful of your lighting abilities, some for attack, some for defence.

This is where everything gets a little more complicated, as there are 2 more upgrade paths. One's ability focused, allowing you to be better at lockpicking, stealth, crafting, or in conversation, among other things. The other is stat based, granting you more health and carry room, or gain better critical hit chances and damage, and many other things. These upgrade trees feel a little superfluous, as points for it are not gained every level. If they were merged, and you gained a point for it every other level, I think it could work better than it does.

The Technomancer, mars, sneak

Combat stances can be changes at will, each of the 3 stances offers a very different combat experience. Warrior, rogue, or guardian, which ever you pick Spiders have done a very good job at making each one feel very fluid, and fun. That's one thing I never thought I would say, The Technomancer has very good combat. While it won't win any awards, it is very fluid. The best part is when you get a critical hit, the game goes slow motion, which not only shows off some very surprisingly impressive animations, but also just makes the combat feel good. You know you have a critical hit because of an awesome slow motion scene, not because some numbers told you so.

This can all get a little repetitive, as each combat stance offers 3 different attacks -- in the case of the guardian style a block -- but you really only find yourself playing around with one of them. I played mostly as a rogue, with dagger and pistol, I would roll around backstabbing enemies and shooting from a far. The warrior style feels like what the game wants you to use, as you are a Technomancer and all Technomancers use staffs, but it doesn't penalise you for your choice of combat style. Fight with a long stick, large blunt object, knife and shooty bang bang, or spark your enemies unconscious, each one feels great. A feat which I am still amazed by, considering the comparatively small budget I imagine The Technomancer had.

The Technomancer, mars

The Technomancer won't be winning any awards, but it kinda stole my heart

The only real issues this game has boils down to the fact it didn't have a AAA budget, something which makes me very happy; that a game can be made to this level of polish with so many restrictions imposed by budget. The major issues boil down to awkward silences, when someone should be interrupted mid sentence they simply stop for a while, and appear to wait to be interrupted -- very polite of them. Then when lockpicking, the door/box/locker doesn't automatically get opened, meaning you have another button press to access the sweat loot or area -- I think we have just been too spoilt. Lastly, when you have climbed up or down a ladder or ledge an animation plays out of your walking for a while, it's just a little bit too long and it becomes annoying.

Other than all of that, and some serviceable delivery of lines, The Technomancer is an excellent example of, not only what can be done on such a comparatively small budget, but of action RPGs in general. It gives players the ability to swiftly switch strategy on the fly, while making each equally as valid as the previous one -- and just as fun. The Technomancer also follows a rather interesting plot, and even has multiple endings based on your decisions throughout the game. It starts as one man's journey to contact earth, and turns into a fight to free the people of Mars. It has interesting characters, who are not perfect, with some doing morally horrible things for the protection of the larger group. Some characters start out appearing selfish, but turn out to just be a little lost in what they were doing.

If you are a fan of action RPGs, and can stomach some flat line deliveries and awkward pauses, The Technomancer is definitely a game you should pick up.

[Note: Copy provided by publisher, Focus Home Interactive, avaliable on PS4, Xbox One, and Windows - Steam]

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The Technomancer launches tomorrow https://www.gameskinny.com/simr3/the-technomancer-launches-tomorrow https://www.gameskinny.com/simr3/the-technomancer-launches-tomorrow Mon, 27 Jun 2016 09:53:17 -0400 Jeffrey Rousseau

The Technomancer, the newest title from developer Spiders, will be releasing tomorrow for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.

Developed by Spiders and published by Focus Home Interactive, this title is a sci-fi action RPG that takes place in the distant future on the planet Mars. Technomancers are beings who possess electrical powers augmented by cybernetic implants and are akin to futuristic mages.

Players will take the role of a rookie Technomancer who will face a series of challenges. He'll have to be on the run from the secret police and brave society's oppression. The protagonist will also have to survive Mars' environment during the War of Water. Along his quest, he'll discover both his past and the secrets of the red planet.

As a roleplaying game, players will be able to take control of a story that can be met with diplomacy or brute force. Their interactions will also affect the relationships with comrades who could be persuaded to join the cause.

Fans of sci-fi and RPGs can look forward to The Technomancer's release tomorrow.

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New trailer for The Technomancer at Gamescom 2015 https://www.gameskinny.com/p97a7/new-trailer-for-the-technomancer-at-gamescom-2015 https://www.gameskinny.com/p97a7/new-trailer-for-the-technomancer-at-gamescom-2015 Sat, 08 Aug 2015 04:04:54 -0400 Charly Mottet

The 2015 edition of the European games convention Gamescom is in full swing, and gaming news is flowing in from all over. For all the RPG fans out there, the Spiders studio is bringing a new game to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC, with a little post-apocalyptic, science-fiction twist... 

The Technomancer comes to life in this dramatic trailer released for Gamescom 2015. For those of you just now hearing about this game, this RPG stars hero Zachariah who explores Mars - the planet, not the chocolate candy. The game takes place after the human colonization on the Red Planet, and everything is now in ruins, with many artifacts, relics, and hordes of mutants - er, "physically scarred by cataclysms of the past" humans - to come across.

Cops on Mars

In the trailer, Zachariah is trying and failing to communicate with Mother Earth. A secret police force is hunting and chasing the Technomancer all over Mars, accompanied by music from renowned composer Olivier Derivière - who also worked on Remember Me, Assassin's Creed IV - Freedom Cry, and several others. 

Each quest Zachariah carries out has a different outcome, depending on how the gamer decides to play it. As usual for RPGs, interacting with companions is important, and it is possible to build friendships with them. The game offers 3 different combat styles and countless ways to develop the Technomancer's melee combat and lightning abilities. 

The Technomancer is planned to be released in 2016. 

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The Technomancer: Bound By Flame Developer Unveils Cyberpunk Fantasy RPG https://www.gameskinny.com/63jdu/the-technomancer-bound-by-flame-developer-unveils-cyberpunk-fantasy-rpg https://www.gameskinny.com/63jdu/the-technomancer-bound-by-flame-developer-unveils-cyberpunk-fantasy-rpg Sat, 11 Apr 2015 12:51:15 -0400 Elijah Beahm

Spiders is not a household name for most gamers. They're a small French studio that's developed several RPGs published by Focus Home Interactive. But if I told you their games, you probably would have only heard them in passing mention. Of Orcs & Men, Mars: War Logs -- even their most recent title, Bound By Flame, only got so-so notice thanks to its release being unfortunately timed around the PS4 launch.

Does this mean their games are bad? No they are not! In fact, they're often very indie-minded AAA games. Which is why you should be excited to hear that Spiders has revealed their next game, which will be combining ideas from all of their past projects - The Technomancer.

The Technomancer looks to be bringing some of the ideas from both Mars: War Logs and Of Orcs & Men together. The single-player action-strategy combat from Mars: War Logs, that was styled heavily after Witcher 2, seems likely given the current screenshots. Magic and cyber-powers have also been played with in Bound By Flame and Mars: War Logs.

However, the new version of Mars presented here has a far more mystical, fantastical in feel. Still, it is likely Spiders will open the game with another downtrodden and or misunderstood man/woman, like with their previous projects. Here's hoping it proves to be another gem!

The game is set to release on Xbox One, PC, and PS4, but no date has been confirmed.

Image Credit: Game Informer

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Bound by Flame Review (PC Edition) https://www.gameskinny.com/k2wl4/bound-by-flame-review-pc-edition https://www.gameskinny.com/k2wl4/bound-by-flame-review-pc-edition Thu, 08 May 2014 19:17:49 -0400 B. Chambers

Bound by Flame won't win any game-of-the-year awards, but it will give RPG fans who like linear, dialog-driven RPGs something to chew on while they wait for the next big thing to come around. 

BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front) - Players who enjoy Role-Playing Games that are:  heavy on dialog; challenging, even on the easier settings; very linear and succinct; and that showcase little variety in the combat and leveling systems, should find something to like about Bound by Flame. Also, keep in mind that I played an earlier build of the game. Focus Home Interactive said they'd be tweaking and improving the PC version right up until launch day.

With that in mind, let's take a look at how different types of gamers may respond to Bound by Flame.

Action Junkies Category - Combat System

What you'll like...

  • Combat is very intuitive and easy to pick up and play.
  • Combat is somewhat tactical in that it punishes vanilla button mashing.
  • The combat system showcases a good amount of variety--different stances allow you to approach combat as a tank, a rogue or a mage. It's also very easy to switch between these stances during battle.
  • The Companion system allows you choose an NPC to fight alongside you.

What you may not like...

  • Combat is extremely repetitive.
  • Defeating enemies in battle requires more patience than tactical skill.
  • Combat with run-of-the-mill enemies often takes too long and can become tedious.
  • Minor camera control issues can cause some frustration in more tense fights.
  • Your companions will often feel useless in combat, not aiding you as much as they should.
  • There's no way to revive incapacitated companions during battle.
Bookworms Category - Story and Characters

What you'll like...

  • While the story is very much your standard RPG fare, the hook of being inhabited by a demon does make for some interesting plot elements.
  • Interesting characters.
  • Excellent voice acting.

What you may not like...

  • This story is the same old song you've heard many times.
  • Choices affecting the plot seem contrived and overly simplified.
  • The writing often feels a bit corny featuring characters using language ranging from King James Biblical English to contemporary American English. 
  • The plot is slightly disjointed and abrupt in its delivery.

Builders Category - Leveling System

What you'll like...

  • Unlike most European RPGs, Bound By Flame's leveling system does not force you to pigeon-hole your character in terms of what class you develop.

What you may not like...

  • The level cap and scripted leveling never really allowed me to feel like I was growing or getting stronger.

Explorers Category

What you may not like...

  • Bound by Flame is extremely linear and does not really allow for much exploration.
  • Questing feels very formulaic and tedious.

 Audiophiles Category

What you'll like...

  • Excellent soundtrack.
  • Excellent voice acting.

 Visualists Category

What you'll like...

  • Great use of color, lighting and texturing

 What you may not like...

  • Dated character models--seems obvious that this game was not built from the ground up for current generation consoles.

 Achievers Category - Steam/PS4/Xbox 360 Achievements

What you'll like...

  • Achievements are fairly standard for an action RPG and mostly fun to acquire.
Verdict

Bound by Flame is listed as Focus Home Intereactive's most ambitious RPG to date. While it does follow the formula of their past RPGs, I agree that this entry attempted to expand and improve on that foundation. They still have some progress to make before their games can be considered truly great, but there is enough fun here to satisfy players who can look past the shortcomings I've mentioned in this review. 

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Watch_Dogs's Spider-Tank Minigame Revealed https://www.gameskinny.com/e7888/watchdogss-spider-tank-minigame-revealed https://www.gameskinny.com/e7888/watchdogss-spider-tank-minigame-revealed Wed, 23 Apr 2014 19:19:10 -0400 Elijah Beahm

When you think of Watch_Dogs, you think of Aiden Pierce hacking Chicago and delivering hard justice. You can see the streets bending to your will at the press of the phone as you fight human trafficking and other illicit crimes. Now out of nowhere, a giant robot spider runs head long across the street. Because obviously giant robot spiders were what everyone was expecting from Watch_Dogs.


No, your eyes aren't deceiving you. No, this is not some April Fool's Day prank that took nearly a month to come out of hiding. This spider-tank is part of a series of mini-games called "Digital Trips." You can activate them at seemingly any time by dialing them (after which, Aiden will fall unconscious until the mini-game is over). Not only will they offer very different experiences from the main game, but they'll also be miniature game experiences all on their own. The spider-tank will be fully upgradable in the final game. There's no word about what other mini-games we'll get to play but if the spider-tank is any indication, nothing is off the table.

There's something Ubisoft seems to have not considered though. By putting this out on the web, when someone looks up Watch_Dogs, this may be what they see first. They'll think it's some cyber punk third person shooter action game. Even the earlier preview Eurogamer advertises in the video looks nothing like the announcement trailer in terms of focus. While Ubisoft swears guns and other standard gameplay elements were built after all the hacking aspects of the game, it doesn't help that they are making the public image less consistent. As much as a game should be judged on its own merits, marketing can make or break some games. This reveal may also make some fans less interested in action aspects of the game more wary.


My Spider-Tank senses are tingling...

It's not all bad though. Personally speaking the mode and idea behind the "Trips" looks quite intriguing, and additional mini-games with this kind of detailed work could give Watch_Dogs some refreshing breaks between core missions. What's more, this is a mini-game, so you don't have to ever bother with it. Playing as a spider-tank will not be as important in Watch_Dogs as, say, playing Mass Effect 3's multiplayer was in Mass Effect 3. For all the potential issues it might cause Watch_Dogs, it just as easily could absolutely not matter at all and never appear again in any Watch_Dogs game.

What do you think? Is Ubisoft pandering to the lowest denominator or are they just trying to add a little more fun into the game? Does this make you more or less interested in getting Watch_Dogs? How many Spider-Man jokes do you think this mini-game is going to get before the day is out? Speak your mind in the comments below!

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Limbo Coming to IOS https://www.gameskinny.com/vp09k/limbo-coming-to-ios https://www.gameskinny.com/vp09k/limbo-coming-to-ios Wed, 26 Jun 2013 12:54:40 -0400 Reilly C.

Limbo is coming to all IOS platforms including iPhone 4s and 5, iPad 2 and iPad mini as well as the latest iTouch.

Anyone else remember this little game that came out in 2010 during the Microsoft Summer of Arcade? It dripped with atmosphere, had interesting puzzles and was slightly horrifying for the tasks it asked you to commit.  It received numerous awards and with multitudes of praise from multiple sources of media.

I couldn't have agreed more.  I loved Limbo and finished it in one sitting as I was wrapped up in its grim world and very minimal sounds added for just the right impact.  I have played it maybe six times through trying to get one elusive Achievement. I heavily recommend this game to anyone but also feel skeptical about this going to touch screen.

The game really requests some very time sensitive jumps and actions that can be made more difficult when your hands all over the screen.  Quite frankly, I worry about the precision of the presses might not register right and cause unnecessary deaths.

I have been surprised though. 

Limbo should be popping up in the App store on July 3rd.

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