There are many tools designed to assist game designers. Many of these tools have features that provide help with several different aspects of a game development process, such as physics and graphics. In the recent years, game engines like Unity and Unreal have contributed to popularizing the creation of complex AAA titles, once exclusively developed by major companies.
We never saw so demanding an era about videogame consumption, and the indications are that the demand will continue to increase year after year. From mobile phones to powerful console systems, from kids to elders, there seems to be a market for everyoneÕs gaming needs.
In the gaming industry, content is king. To keep players satisfied, game developers need to invest in compelling characters, stories and eye-candy graphics. Creativity and novelty are musts, since the player should not feel that they are playing the "same" game repetitively in each advancing level.
The need for such creativity and content has led to the emergence of advanced AI-assisted game development tools. Unlike generic game creation tools, such tools specifically focus on AI techniques. For example, they can automatically and flawlessly create levels and environments using minimal inputs. AI can also play games and collect data about gameplay sessions, allowing developers and makers a clear and concise window into the development and debugging process. AI can understand and predict how potential players will be interacting with the game, leading to better insights into future installments and personalized gameplay. Although AI-assisted game design tools are still in their infancy, the results are extremely exciting and present an exemplary mixed-initiative future with human-augmented AI.
- Tiago Machado
I had worried that The Elder Scrolls Online had played its best hand too soon when it released Morrowind as its first "chapter" (or expansion) in 2017, but I'd forgotten about the dragons. The beasts, so loved from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, take flight in ESO's upcoming Elsweyr expansion, and earlier today ESO's creative director Rich Lambert showed audiences on Twitch how dragons would spend the game's next chapter burninating the homeland of the cat-like Khajiit. The new chapter launches for pre-orders buyers on May 20, and here are five good reasons why you'll want to be around in May when the fur and fire starts to fly. Here there be dragons, and frankly it's about time. I'm a little surprised to see them.
By the time our Skype call connects and Matt Smith says hello, it's already January 15th at the Friend & Foe offices in Tokyo. After nearly five years of development and public promises, his studio's first original game, Vane, is out across Europe and Asia. It'll go live in the US in about six hours. "[I'm] excited, really excited, exhausted, and kind of nervous as well," Smith said. "I think those are the main three things, but it's just -- the thing is it's kind of hard also to turn away from it. I've got other things I should probably turn my life back to, but there's this draw to continually check Twitter, even though there's nothing interesting, nothing we need to look at there, and we can probably afford to leave it alone for a couple of days and probably should just to recharge our batteries. So, I'm really nervous, and I really want to make sure everything goes well, so I'm sort of obsessively tracking things and checking things."
The Warner Bros. Minecraft movie has a new director... again. Variety reports that Peter Sollett is now on board to write and direct the long-awaited movie, which was at one point supposed to be released in May of this year. However, production has hit delays, due in part to director switchups. Previously, Rob McElhenney (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia) was set to direct the film, but he left the project last August. And he had taken over from Shawn Levy (Night at the Museum) who dropped out in 2014.
Critics from around the world have praised the game for its engrossing storyline, rich open world environment and stunning graphics, with many calling it among the best video games of all time. IGN has hailed the game for its'gorgeous depiction' of the Old West with'one of this generation's best single-player experiences' that's'a meticulously polished open world ode to the outlaw era.' Game Informer gave Red Dead Redemption II a perfect score of ten out of ten, saying: 'Rockstar Games has outdone itself again with Red Dead Redemption II. 'The up-close portrayal of the outlaw Van der Linde gang's unraveling is a compelling companion story that blends seamlessly with the original game, and depth and breadth of the open world is a technical triumph that every gamer should experience.' Electronic Gaming Monthly also praised the game for its visuals, storyline and attention to detail, saying: 'This is one of the most gorgeous, seamless, rootinest, tootinest games ever made, and if you voluntarily miss out on it, you're either not a gamer or in a coma.' Another very positive review came from US Gamer, which lauded its'absolutely beautiful open world' with the few drawbacks in the game being the occasional bugs and the somewhat tedious travel across the game world at times.
Rockstar continues to expand the Red Dead Online beta, and its latest update will seem particularly familiar. The studio has added a Gun Rush mode that's effectively a one-for-one parallel to the battle royale modes you see in Fortnite, PUBG and numerous other titles from the past two to three years. You or your team have to scrounge for weapons while fighting to remain the last one standing in an ever shrinking play area. If there's a major difference, it's the scale -- with a maximum of 32 players, you'll probably finish rounds sooner than you would in the 100-player brawls that define other battle royale titles. There are more updates in the pipeline as a result of feedback, particularly to address griefing.
From Birdo, the 1988 Nintendo character described in the manual as a boy who "thinks he is a girl", to Robert Yang's recent Radiator trilogy, which includes an autoerotic game about pleasuring a gay car, there's a surprisingly rich history of queer content in gaming. However, these instances are rarely portrayed as part of broader LGBTQ culture. Berlin's Schwules Museum has opened a new exhibition called Rainbow Arcade, that does just this. The show leads visitors around a rainbow, each colour a different section, covering the last 33 years of queer content in games through fan art, memorabilia and video interviews with designers – as well as playable titles such as Caper in the Castro, one of the first explicitly queer games. In this 1989 game, based around the famously queer San Franciscan thoroughfare, players take on the role of lesbian detective Tracker McDyke to solve the disappearance of her friend and drag queen Tessy LaFemme.
It has been one hell of a year for indie games, as evidenced by our 2018 Game of the Year list. Nine out of the ten entries on that list were indies, which almost negates the need for us to do our traditional "Games You Missed" list as well. Hopefully there's something you missed, rescued from the void at the last second before we roll into 2019. A spiritual successor to Dave Gilbert's acclaimed Blackwell series, Unavowed takes place in the same magical-realism version of New York City. Blackwell is fantastic, don't get me wrong, but all five are pretty traditional adventure games.
The whole of 2019 may not be looking so hot coming off the disastrous year that was/is 2018, but at least there's video games to distract us from everything else. We dusted off our telescopes and looked over the video games we expect to see in 2019, compiling a list of the most titillating titles that we think will most capture our hearts and attentions in the next 12 or so months. There's sequels of beloved series, there's peaceful creations for when life's too hard, there's intriguing horror games, there's insightful-looking indie games, and there's even some action games for when you just need to let off some steam and kill bad guys. Sometimes you just want to style on some demons, and Devil May Cry 5 has your back. The hack-and-slash franchise returns in March to tear a whole bunch of bad guys a whole bunch of new ones with the help of Dante, Nero, and a new character named V.
World of Warcraft allows players to dive into a vast fantasy realm populated with players from around the world. Together they battle to survive alongside dragons, trolls and warlocks - even on Christmas Day. Video games have long proved a formidable force in capturing the hearts, imaginations and wallets of people all over the world. The most immersive gaming experience, according to its fans, is World of Warcraft and in Azeroth, where the game is set, even Christmas Day is celebrated with turkey feasts, snowball fights and presents under a tree. In a time where many of us spend more time online, what does it mean to celebrate 25 December in a virtual world?
Below is a game steeped in time, from creation to consumption, and it demands patience from developers and players alike. Capybara Games revealed Below during the Xbox E3 conference in 2013, suggesting this beautiful, dark and expansive adventure game would be out soon. Another trailer dropped, showing a tiny character fighting its way through massive dungeons filled with supernatural secrets, but no release date appeared. Finally, on December 14th, 2018, Below landed on Xbox One and Steam. Players dove in, and many quickly realized that waiting for Below to launch wouldn't be the only test of their patience.