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  • Demetrios - The Big Cynical Adventure

    One of the coolest things about gaming today is that you don't have to be into first person shooters or sports games to find something to play on home consoles.  More casual games are being released so that everyone has a reason to game with a controller.  Word games, puzzlers, visual novels, walking simulators, and point and click adventures are thriving.  CowCat, a one-man studio, has released Demetrios - The Big Cynical Adventure, which is a mix between point and click and visual novel.

      Demetrios is a fun, strange, off beat little game that follows the exciting, mundane and often awkward adventures of Bjorn Thonen - antiques dealer.  After a night of way too much alcohol you come home to try and just sleep it off, but you are awoken in the middle of the night by a strange phone call.  You are warned of impending danger, but shrug it off as a practical joke and go back to sleep.  Soon, there is a loud noise in your apartment that startles you out of your slumber.  Being still mostly drunk, you decide the best course of action is to investigate - which ends about as well as you might expect.

      What follows is a wild ride to discover the secrets surrounding your recent purchase of a bird statue.  Soon you are playing private eye, trying to date your cute neighbor Sandra, running for your life, run your business, and jetting off to exotic locales.  All while trying to find hidden cookies.  The developer must have a serious thing for baked treats, and a devilish sense of humor - because there are 3 cookies hidden in each scene, for a total of 114 in the game.

      Gameplay is very simple - explore each scene for items and information needed to advance the story and move to the next scene.  Some puzzles will require that you travel between a few locations to get all the parts.  One of the great things of this game is that you can zoom in and explore almost every detail of each scene.  This means that you can see the time spent on each scene.  On the flip slip it also means you can spend hours looking for details that have zero bearing on the story, except for the cookies.  The cookies can be eaten for hints to either help you when you are struggling with puzzles or the story.

      The graphics are obviously that of a small studio, but that only adds to the charm of the title.  The fact that they hid 3 cookies, very well, on each location shows their attention to detail.  Books on shelves have snarky titles, and more.  The dialogue is smart, funny, and hits the mark almost every time.  When you start the game you can pick how much toilet humor you want, so you can go from downright raunchy to family friendly depending on who is playing.

      The game offers an interesting story, little penalty for dying (and some good laughs when you do ), and some interesting puzzles.  There is a good balance between puzzle and story and you will rarely find yourself scratching your head trying to figure out what your next move is.  You can pick up the game and play for 10 minutes, or play through the campaign in one sitting.  But rushing through this title would be a mistake as there are so many hidden gems throughout the cracks and corner to discover.
     
      Demetrios - The Big Cynical Adventure is out not on XB1, PS4, Steam, and Vita.  You can add it to your collection for around $10.  This is one of those titles that even non-casual gamers should check out for the blend of offbeat comedy, adventure, puzzles, and the vast array of death options. 
    9/10

    Pressure Overdrive

      Have you ever wondered what it would be like to try to defeat an evil water stealing mastermind while piloting a steam punk bath tub?  I mean, honestly, who hasn’t?  Well you don’t have to wonder any longer because Chasing Carrots has released Pressure Overdrive where you can do just that.

      You play as Morgan, a young, carefree soul that lives on the edge of a lake.  One morning as you go for your morning dip you realize that all the water is gone.  You quickly notice signs for a new spa and understand what has happened.  Your lake, and all the water in the surrounding area, has been syphoned off to create this luxury get away and it is up to you to fix things.  So you decide to build a steam powered bath tub of doom straight out of Mad Max to liberate the wet stuff and foil the evil mastermind.

      To beat him you must traverse 30 different levels and beat 3 separate bosses.  You can either do this solo, or with a friend in local co-op.  No matter how you decide to play, there are 3 different skill levels to choose from.  You can have multiple saves going at once, so you can try out different combinations to see what works, or just play with different friends.  If the campaign isn’t your style you can always play Endless mode, where you battle wave after wave till you succumb to the enemy.

      One of the coolest things about this game is your bath tub.  Because you are not going to bring an ordinary tub into battle, you are going to bring the big guns.  As you destroy enemies you collect gold which can be used to upgrade your tub.  Add a bigger gun, more armor, side grinders, rear electric bolts and more.  Customize your ride to suit the way you play, but beware everything is steam powered, so if you run low on steam, you will slow down and your fire rate will drop.

        As you delve deeper into the spa you get a look at a wide variety of locations and enemies.  The graphics are bright, colorful, and maintain their integrity as you are zipping through the levels.  Each boss has an interesting design that will excite you when you see them and challenge you while you are battling them.  You also get a rocking soundtrack to accompany you on your journey.

      Pressure Overdrive is out now.  You can pick it up for XB1, PS4, or Steam.  
    8/10
     

    DeadCore

    I have a confession to make, I am not the most graceful person in the world.  In fact, about 15 years ago I shattered BOTH of my ankles chasing after the ice cream man.  This little adventure ended with a plate and 6 screws in one ankle and a one of a kind story.  So, I live out my dreams of flying high and leaping effortlessly through video games.  But, if you ask anyone who has played a game with me that requires precious jumping – my dreams rarely come true.  Recently, Grip Digital s.r.o. released DeadCore on Xbox One and PS4 and I got another shot at living out my dreams.

      DeadCore can best be described as a 1st person shooter, platformer, puzzler, speed runner.  It is a mouth full to say, and a handful to play, but it is a wild ride.  You have fallen endlessly through strong magnetic storms to awaken in a desolate world.  You have no memory, and as you start to explore the world strange message start to appear around you.  A huge tower appears out of the mist and you realize that you must climb it to find answers – you must reach the top.

        The game starts out simple enough, you learn the basics like walking and running.  But, it would be too easy if you were running in the wide open spaces, so you are moving on thin platforms that are suspended in the air.  Once you begin to get comfortable with the basics, jumps and double jumps thrown into the mix.  Soon after you master the art of being a bunny, you are given a rifle to use.  The rifle is not just for show.  You will use the gun to open doors, disable traps, and eventually take out enemies.  You have to be mindful of your aim because you have a limited number of shots.  Another neat feature of the gun is that it tracks your time, so during speed runs you have that information right up front.

      This game is not for the faint of heart or those that are looking for a purely first person shooter experience.  You will need some serious skills to get through this game and beat the time trials.  That being said – everything in game is executed near flawlessly to make sure that you every chance to prove your worth.  The graphics are spot on and the higher you climb on the tower the more dizzying the view gets as you look down into the abyss.

      One you complete the story aspect of the game you are not ready to hang up your shoes.  You can tackle the whole thing over again in speed run mode.  But this time you can mix things up and place the sections in the order that you want.  This porovides you with almost unlimited variety and endless gameplay options.  You can make you playlist as easy or as difficuly as you want.

      DeadCore is out now on XB1 and PS4.  If you are looking for a game that will test you skills, or want to relive the glory days of speed running games where every second counts and precision is key – you need to add this title to you stack.

    Unbox : Newbie's Adventure

       For the last 4 years I have taken my vacation to Boston to go to Pax East – Penny Arcade Expo – an amazing video game show open to the public, featuring triple A titles and Indie titles alike.  One of my favorite parts of Pax is getting to play all the Indie Games that are still in development, months and sometimes years before they are released.  One of these games that I got to play this year was Unbox : Newbie’s Adventure from Merge Games LTD.

      Unbox : Newbie’s Adventure is a one of a kind physics platformer that transforms you into the newest member of the Global Postal Service.  The GPS is made up of self-delivering packages, but unfortunately a group of evil boxes known as The Wild Cards have made it their mission to stop you.  You must rescue trapped packages, collect rolls of golden tape, beat challenges, collect stamps and defeat world bosses.

      There is A LOT to do in this game, and the mechanics are very easy to learn.  The left stick is used to control the direction of your box.  To jump all you have to do is press the right trigger.  You can also “unbox” by pressing the left trigger – this gives you an extra jump.  You have 6 of these without having to grab any health crates.  They come in handy when trying to cross great expanses of water or climb great heights.

      The campaign features 3 different worlds, each containing a different boss.  There also 18 stamps, 200 Golden Tape Rolls, and trapped comrades to rescue.  If that isn’t enough for you to do, there is also couch co-op modes.  You and up to 3 friends can battle in 5 different game modes, or mix them up and play a tournament.  Race, collect gold tape, have the most coins, battle with weapons, or capture the odd box.  Each game mode offers a unique way to play with your friends and will provide hours of enjoyment.

      The graphics of the game are bright and colorful.  All of the characters are well designed and some are really cute.  For the record – my 14 year old son wants a Hop figure.  The music is amazing.  The first major area that you are in is an island and you are treated to a soundtrack straight out of the Caribbean.  Steel drums transport you to the sunny beach. The next level takes place in the mountains, and the soundtrack takes you to the ski lodge nestled among those snow-covered peaks.

      Unbox hits many of the right chords for a platformer – lots of game play, solid controls, different and inventive story and of course fun.  But it also has a few pitfalls.  There are a few occasions when the camera angle can get in the way of platforming.  You can control the camera with the right thumb stick, but twisting it can confuse the issue more.  The other issue I found was the boss fights don’t always seem to go as scripted.  You can quickly figure out how to defeat the boss, but out of nowhere the boss will get hurt some other way, and before you know it, you have won.  This isn’t really a huge problem, but I felt a bit cheated not stomping him myself.

      Unbox : Newbie’s Adventure is available July 26th for XB1 and PS4.  It is already available on PC if that is your platform of choice.  If you own a Switch, don’t fret – the title is confirmed for sometime 2017.      

    Iron Crypticle

    Iron Crypticle is one of the best Indie games of the year.  At the core, the game is a top-down twin-stick rogue-like dungeon crawler with some RPG elements.  It is up to 4 player local co-op, and you are a knight navigating rooms in the dungeon to recover the Princess along with the King’s treasures.  The rooms for each level are random on each playthrough and with three difficulty levels, it brings a challenge to even the most worthy knight.
    Each basic room consists of two waves of monsters, which you need to defeat to proceed.  The enemies drop food items, which increase your score, and the level of your knight, as well as weapons that you can use for a short duration.  The more levels you have, the more HP you’ll have, and the more upgrades you can get on your four stats (Damage, Attack Speed, Movement Speed, and Weapon Duration).  There are a few special rooms, but I will not spoil the fun and let you discover them on your own.
    There is an unlockable system, so as you play new types of weapons will drop, as well as one time use scrolls.  One of the biggest challenges I’ve found with games that use a unlocking system like this is an early weapon is one of the best, and the new ones never have any usefulness.  This leaves the player in a situation where the pool of items has become so large that they no longer get the good weapons.  The developers at Confused Pelican and Tikipod have done a great job with this.  All weapons are well balanced, there are weapons that attack at a long range, but do less damage, and close-range weapons that do a lot of damage.  The only weapon I did not like was the grenade, as it is the only weapon that does not hit enemies right in front of you, but does massive damage at range.
    Art is done in a retro style and looks really good, there is a variety of enemies with different attacks and movement patterns, and the music is well done.  There are boss fights at the end of each level of the dungeon and it is random which boss, and what version of the boss you get.  There is also a New Game+ mode after completing the story once and an Endless mode for many more hours of gameplay.  There is a Leaderboard to compete with your friends and others to try to get the highest scores.
    For such a simple concept, there is a lot to this game.  I can tell that the developers took inspiration from the arcade classic Smash TV when designing this game, and they pulled it together perfectly.  Iron Crypticle is a really fun game to play solo, and even more fun to play on the couch with your friends.  This is a gem in the sea of Indie games.
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  • Posts

    • Hello ladies and gent,  My name is Ryan aka Doc I served 7 years as a hospital corpsman.  I spent the majority of those years with various units across 1st mar div.  After a few deployments I decided that it was time to separate and take advantage of the gi bill.  Now that I have a little extra time and a love for gaming I've started streaming, I play a little bit of everything but focus on arma 3, pubg, and fortnite.  I'm very active in the local vet community as well as team RWB, I'm looking forward to getting involved here and gaming with you all.  Let the shenanigans begin!
    • I live life with my head held high and as positive as possible. I love to stream games and push being friendly and interactive as possible all wile providing a positive environment for all friends to join. I served in the army for 7 years and 4 tours and now stream full time on twitch. Mad love to you all and happy grinding
    • Hello everyone, Names is keith, 33 year old veteran. I go by mizfitwolf on most consoles and my streaming channel. I served little over 11 years before I was medical discharged and retired after receiving injuries on my last tour of duty.  Have to say I struggled to find somewhere I could fit in and work or even do things to keep my sanity.  After long struggles both mental and physical finally came back to gaming as a way to cope.  Due to my disabilities gaming been my way of reconnecting with people, and so I found streaming, which became a great outlet and alot of fun which started a long and fun as a streamer and part of larger communities.  I came across this group after doing some work with another community and seeing the OSD group.  Im hoping to meet some of you around the community and getting to know you all, maybe even playing with some of you.
    • I've only seen videos from scrubs playing the new Beta for Destiny 2.  Need to get some feedback from fellow vets and see what the consensus is.  So anyone have any thoughts or opinions on the new game? Worth buying? Avoiding? Buying on sale a year from now?
    • Finding Your Next Mission! Our corporate sponsors and other business relationships make us keenly aware of the high demand for veterans in the marketplace. Our mission for the ACT program is to capitalize on the leadership, principles, and mission accomplishment mentality that every veteran possesses and help them translate that into continued success in the civilian sector. Our taxpayers have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into training these elite men and women and at HCC we provide the additional training, coaching, and mentoring to ensure that investment produces a tremendous return for the veteran, the employer, and our economy. A few things our veterans receive: ·         Training and counseling from HR Professionals and our corporate partners ·         Network development and assessment for career advancement ·         Targeted job search/resume techniques and potential employer research strategies ·         Social media guidance ·         Assessments and Strengths evaluation ·         Connections with vast HCC network of businesses and employers ·         Interview/elevator speech prep     This is a free, five day, in-house training at HCC’s Veteran Business Center located in Farmers Branch, Texas Apply online at http://www.hccvet.org/act-program/     Respectfully, William J. Miller Honor Courage Commitment, Inc. ACT/Fellows Program Manager (214) 431-3834 william.miller@hccvet.org
    • When selecting your time slot, what time zone is it based on?
    • Hey Sam! If you want to start streaming for OSD - just find a date on the calendar (I will work on your privileges now) and then secure it with your stream link and information, on that day, let us know and we will get you all of the stuff you need to get started streaming in support of Operation Supply Drop, I will also be going over the rules for streaming on the channel *the usual stuff*.    Thanks for joining us! 
    • Hello to all! My name is Troy, (Sam_U_ElJackson). I am 47 years old and an Active Army / Army National Guard vet. I spent a total of 18 years in and got out because of PTSD. After struggling to hold down a fulltime job  I stepped into uncharted waters and started streaming. I started as a console streamer then I bought a gaming PC. Each day has been a blessing and an escape from my daily struggles in life. I figured, if I am streaming for fun, why not do it for a cause and meet others that share things I have in common. After a short search I found Operation Supply Drop, and Mil-Sim Gaming.  I am always looking for new friends, other gamers, and do not mind adding people to my discord or games to play with me! I mostly stream/play 7 Days To Die and Minecraft. Hope everyone has fun and feel free to reach out to me! Troy aka Sam_U_ElJackson  
    • Hello to all! Name is Mike, aka Wanderingjew101. I am 31 years old and an Army National Guard vet. Spent 8 years in and got out because of an injury with my ankle. I am now working at a local liquor store, am in school milking my GI Bill benefits to get my Bachelors in Business Leadership and Management (so I can open my own business here shortly after I get the degree). I stream in my off time and do it for the fun of streaming. I have done one charity stream for Help Hope Live, and hope to keep that kind of thing going from time to time, on a regular basis, on my own stream. I figured, if I am streaming for fun, why not do it for a cause. Found the Operation Supply Drop to hit my in the place where I use to have a heart, and figured I would take steps to raising money for the cause!  I am always looking for new friends, other gamers, and do not mind adding people to my discord or games to play with me! Hope everyone has fun and feel free to reach out to me! Michael aka Wanderingjew101
Mountain View

OPERATION SUPPLY DROP

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