Jul 302013
 
Bastion - Review

              Format: PC Reviewer: Remy77077 Approximate Time Spent playing at time of writing: 22 hours Modes of play: Single Player, Online Leaderboards Bastion looks & sounds really pretty and it’s quite novel these days to see an action adventure game from an overhead isometric viewpoint rather than a 3D one. This gives rise to more space related gameplay as it’s much easier to judge the overall action from your overhead viewpoint & play more tactically. Controls [...Full Story...]

Jun 102013
 
The day competitive fighting games died?

Well, the FPS genre has all but been ruined by grinding, ‘pay to win’, ‘grind to compete’, ‘free to play’ models of sales that all but kill off any way to play those games as fundamentally competitive endeavours. The MOBA genre is only just about hanging on, but the anti-competitive designs like League of Legends are cannibalising the better models in other RTS games. Now, will fighting games be dealt a KO blow themselves? Tekken Revolution Here’s the twist: you [...Full Story...]

Mar 252013
 
Blood Brothers - Review

We did not really consider gambling ‘fruit machines‘ (aka slot machines or just slots) when it came to defining the Agoners review criteria. They clearly aren’t designed to be any kind of challenge or competitive game at all. The best fit they would have to our criteria would be under the “Toy / Experience” category – for those that enjoy the thrill of betting against the odds to try to win money, or of calculating the odds correctly. Of course [...Full Story...]

Nov 072012
 
Halo 4 lacking skill ranking

Well Halo 4 has gone one worse than Halo Reach even, and launched without any kind of skill-based ranking system, and now has a gameplay affecting grind exploitationware system too rather than a purely cosmetic one. These are absolutely horrible decisions for competitive gamers everywhere and make me wish I could go back in time to Halo 2′s release again! Reach eventually got some semblance of a working ranking system, but it was too little too late, confined to one [...Full Story...]

Aug 062012
 
Competitive Gaming 123

We’ve written so much here on Agoners about competitive gaming, as per our definitions, that I thought it might be useful to re-state a few things in a single article. A bit of a re-statement of our beliefs; a competitive gaming manifesto if you like. Gaming design for competitive gaming should always mean these three things: 1. As level a playing field as possible. This means that as much as possible everyone is playing the same game with potential access [...Full Story...]

Aug 022012
 
Guild Wars 2 - PvP done right?

I completely missed out on playing Guild Wars the first, because I thought it was just another MMO. Years afterwards when I got more into PC gaming I discovered it actually had a potentially decent competitive game hidden underneath the BS grinding veneer. So Guild Wars 2 is definitely on my agoners radar this time around. Although I missed out on any beta access, this latest update on the game really is saying all the right things for agoners: We [...Full Story...]

Jun 182012
 
Korea to ban trade of commercial game items - great!

Korea prohibits trade of online game items. This is a great piece of news  as far as Agoners is concerned. Whilst their motivations are rather different, this does seriously hinder the money making options for any game design that is rewarding labour over other skills – ie: giving options to “grind”. Hopefully the rest of the world will eventually catch up with South Korea and it may help turn the tide against this horrible type of game design. Labour>Skill designs [...Full Story...]

Jun 012012
 
DOTA 2 - Free to Play? Pay to Win? Grind to compete?

Interesting news tidbit today about DOTA 2.. Dota 2 will not be a pay-to-win game. All the items in the store are cosmetic, and don’t affect gameplay. All of the heroes will be available free of charge. We believe restricting player access to heroes could be destructive to game design, so it’s something we plan to avoid. (read more detail on their FAQ too here) Now I personally have quite a few issues of competitive gaming taste with the whole ‘MOBA’ [...Full Story...]

May 242011
 
Bullet Witch - Review

Title: Bullet Witch Format: XBox 360 Reviewer: Remy77077 Approximate Time Spent playing at time of writing: 9 hours Modes of play: Single Player, Online Leaderboards. Bullet Witch is a single player “3D action adventure” challenge title. It’s immediately and obviously comparable to Bayonetta due to it’s stylistic similarities, however Bullet Witch is the originator that was released years before it’s imitator Bayonetta, although it itself apes stylistic elements from a lot of much older material, manga and anime in particular [...Full Story...]

Jan 042011
 
Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing - Review

Title: Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing Format: XBox 360 Reviewer: Remy77077 Approximate Time Spent playing at time of writing: 29 hours Modes of play: Single Player, 2-4 Player Split-screen Offline Competitive, Online 2-8 player Competitive, Online Leaderboards At some point playing Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing I realised exactly why I’ve never been able to get into most driving games. It’s because they are almost all about rote-learning of the perfect route through a course, and pure execution skills. There’s [...Full Story...]

Aug 122010
 
Why I hate level up systems

As soon as I see people selling pre-levelled up characters and gear, or selling in game gold and the ilk  then I know something has gone badly wrong with a game. If a portion of a game is so bad and boring that people are willing to buy their way into not playing it, that’s a red flag for me to stay away. After Navan’s seminal videogame categorizations, it’s even clearer to explain how I generally play and judge videogame titles almost [...Full Story...]