Bittersweet harmony: Amplitude’s Kickstarter campaign is hitting only bum notes

Amplitude

Enthusiasm, ambition, innovation: these are qualities that Cambridge, Mass studio Harmonix (Music Systems) has exhibited in spades since first its first rhythm action games, the PlayStation 2 exclusives Frequency (2001) and Amplitude (2003), drew critical acclaim aplenty, if not phenomenal sales. They would come later, when the company introduced its Guitar Hero and Rock Band… Continue reading

Kidnapping, murder and meat shields: the grim cyberpunk world of Satellite Reign

Satellite Reign

In February 2012, fans of the classic, cyberpunk squad-shooter Syndicate let out the disappointed sigh that had been building for months. EA’s glossy reboot of the franchise appeared to confirm their worst suspicions: that the series had been bent out of shape to fit the Call of Duty mold, and that the isometric Syndicates of… Continue reading

Steve Swink’s Scale, the game concept five years in the making

Scale

Scale’s arrival on Kickstarter attracted plenty of attention last month, but it’s really just the latest chapter in the evolution of a project whose concept first struck its creator Steve Swink five years ago. The idea formulated while Swink sat watching Jonathan Blow’s Design Reboot session at 2007’s Montreal International Games Summit – it was… Continue reading