суббота, 9 января 2021 г.


In recent weeks, all connoisseurs of collectible card games have been talking excitedly about  Monster Train  - the game started from the eighth place in sales on Steam, ahead of  Fallout 76  and  Halo: The Master Chief Collection . She also has extremely positive reviews based on almost 5,000 reviews, and on Metacritic she has a grandmaster of 85 points. Let's briefly explain why the game is so cool.

Monster Train takes the best of Slay the Spire ...

Taking the best from  Slay the Spire  is generally fashionable today, but in this case it really looks appropriate and not annoying. That is,  Monster Train  is also a roguelike card game, where, in addition to the actual duels, there is progress on the map. There we ourselves decide where to move - left or right, to buy improvements for fighters or for enchantments, collect artifacts or gold, remove two cards, or, conversely, double some, and so on. True, in  Slay the Spire  you can avoid some battles with especially strong enemies, while in  Monster Train  you cannot.

As with  Slay the Spire , in addition to the regular outing, there are also special challenges where we compete against other players. At the same time, we ourselves can create our own test. As a result of all this, new maps and artifacts are opened (they must be used in the next races and trials), ratings are compiled, and so on.

... And added Dungeon Keeper there

Action  Monster Train  takes place in hell, which was frozen after the "paradise" heroes extinguished Sunshine. We play for the bad guys, who on the title "monster truck" are carrying the last spark of hellfire to reignite the Hell. From time to time the train is penetrated by "good" - all these positive angels and knights to boredom, who attack in waves and gradually rise to get into the room with the flame and try to destroy it. And we need to protect it, exposing our fighters in the way of enemies, using enchantments and so on.

More than once or twice, I have repeated lately that almost all collectible card games today tend to add elements of "roguelike" and somehow follow in the footsteps of  Slay the Spire . And finally, the CCG was found, which went its own way -  Signs of the Sojourner is  not about battles, monsters, chests, relics and bosses, but about people, words and relationships.

The daughter is for the mother!

Signs of the Sojourner  tells the story of a girl with cat ears, who inherited from her mother the business of running a shop in a small town. The latter always stood in the way of the trade caravan.

Her mother herself joined the caravan to go around the surrounding settlements, trade and replenish stocks of goods. And now our heroine must take her place - for the girl this is an important test, because she must convince the leader of the caravan that she is able to competently manage the store, establish contacts, receive orders and goods.

If after six months (and this is five trips) business in the shop does not go uphill and all these trips do not give results, then the shop and the town itself, where it is located, will be excluded from the regular route of the caravan. And this will not have the best effect on business and the city. Therefore, you need to complete key tasks - as a rule, this is something to get and bring home.

Everything is learned in communication

However, don't assume that  Signs of the Sojourner  has parts of an economic strategy or a management simulator. Everything here is based on communication with the best friend of the main character (his name is Elias, and he is always waiting for her at home), as well as with characters in the surrounding settlements. These can be old mother's acquaintances, merchants, musicians, thieves, elderly gardeners and even ... androids. They have their own affairs, problems, something might happen to them, and they ask for help (for example, persuading someone to stay in the city or help with gardening).

What happens if you add  color and some Hollow Knight- style  metroidvania to  Limbo ? Or, on the contrary,  add riddles to  Hollow Knight ? The Neversong authors   tried to answer this question.

Sleep of reason

Why  Limbo ? Because  Neversong  is also a scary tale about how a boy (and our hero Pete is 10 years old) goes in search of a girl with whom something bad happened. Yes, everything is not so black and white here - the color palette is much richer, more light, and other characters are present, so there is no atmosphere of completely oppressive loneliness. But overall the spirit is the same.
At the same time, we immediately know that everything actually happens in the head of Pete, who is in a coma (the first name of the game is  Once Upon a Coma ). And it happened to him just after his girlfriend Ren was kidnapped and dragged away to some terrible place. But even in the subconscious, Pete is trying to find her.

The smile of death

What's wrong with her, where is this terrible place, what screams are heard from the depths of the Eternal Forest? Pete asks the other kids, his buddies. Some of them answer, give advice or ask for help themselves. Others say Ren is dead and giggle. Someone is always jumping, trying to count to the desired number. Someone is sitting in a tree, and one kid, suffering from "bloating disorder" (and bad language!), Swelled up, got stuck in the hatch, like Winnie the Pooh in the door of the house, and shouted: "Find a needle and stab me!"

The Shantae series has   existed for almost 20 years, but during this time only five games about a half-genie girl saw the light. The fifth part of  Apple  wanted to make its Arcade service exclusive, but it turned out that last year subscribers got only a fragment of  Shantae and the Seven Sirens . The potential was already visible then, and after a few months, not only the owners of "apple" technology, but also the owners of the PC and all current consoles can try the full version.

Back to work

The authors did not experiment in the same way as in  Shantae: Half-Genie Hero - the novelty is not divided into levels, but is a metroidvania in which all locations are connected to each other. Moreover, this metroidvania is textbook, without significant innovations, made in the best traditions of the genre. There are at least two exits from most rooms, enemies are scurrying around everywhere, and in the early stages you repeatedly come across obstacles, to overcome which you obviously need some kind of inaccessible ability.

According to the plot, Shante goes to rest on the island with his uncle and friends, where he meets with the mayor, who organized a festival with the participation of the same half-genies as the main character. We quickly find the lost participants, after which a performance begins, during which the projectors go out for a couple of seconds and the whole troupe, with the exception of Shantae, is kidnapped by someone. The mayor is in a panic, his uncle asks Shante not to get involved in this business and finally have a humanly rest, but she cannot sit idly by.

The plot has never been Shantae's forte  , and nothing has changed. This is all the same simple, funny adventure with cute characters and good humor, in which the fourth wall is broken more than once, and jokes are made on timeless themes. Longtime fans of the series will meet familiar heroes (including the permanent Risky Boots), and newcomers do not need to understand the universe to enjoy the pleasant gameplay.

First of all, Disintegration attracts attention with an unusual concept: instead of running on the ground, as in standard shooters, or looking from somewhere in the sky, as in strategies, we are offered an intermediate option. In Disintegration, you hang high enough for your inner tactician to swing, but not high enough to avoid being directly involved in battles.

Second, Disintegration is the child of Marcus Lehto, the former creative art director of Bungie, who has worked on the entire Halo series up to and including Reach. In 2012, he embarked on an independent voyage and then founded V1 Interactive, which recruited AAA industry veterans and talented students. Disintegration is the first high-profile project of the collective.
What's the point?
In Disintegration, you fly over the ground on your gravity bike and issue orders to your allies. The Gravity Cycle is equipped with two weapons - from machine guns and sticky bombs to turrets and healing cannons. Companions are also not bastard: they shoot back at opponents and can use special abilities - for example, arrange a rocket salvo or set a slowing canopy. This core of gameplay is used in both the single player campaign and multiplayer.

The gameplay has a solid storyline. A catastrophe has occurred in the world of Disintegration, because of which the existence of humanity has been threatened. What exactly happened is not so important - what matters is that people began to be rescued in an extravagant way: the brain was removed from the body, transplanted into a special container and installed in a robot. Cyberconserves are able to survive the destruction of the iron body, but they will not last long without it - this explains the need to quickly pick up the heads of fallen allies so that they respawn.