Imagine if Lord of the Rings ended with Aragorn riding out into the abandoned wastes of Mordor, his crown forsaken, his throne left to an uncertain fate. Imagine, growing from out of the ashes of Sauron’s dominion, tender blades of green grass. That’s where David Benioff and D.B. Weiss’ Game of Thrones left us: the messianic king-who-wasn’t, Jon Snow, riding out of Westeros in company with the Free Folk to bring life back to death’s frozen domain. The throne, over which so much blood was shed, melted to slag; the queen who never got a chance to take it for her own killed in its shadow; the dragon that set fire to tens of thousands at her command flying away into the falling ash toward no-one-knows-where. What’s left is a council of misfits, a wise and peaceful king, and a broken kingdom remade a little different, perhaps a little better, than before. No locked-in golden age, no heroic promised one to wear the crown, no satisfaction at seeing people … [Read more...] about Game of Thrones: the series review
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This article ran in two parts across PC Gamer issues 324 and 325. For more quality articles about all things PC gaming, you can subscribe now in the UK and the US. The history of computer strategy games begins on tables and boards, crammed inside cupboards alongside that knackered old box of Risk that every home seems to possess. The moment strategy made the leap to consoles and computers, it was already familiar. These weren’t just inspired by the games people were playing, in many cases they were direct copies that had been squeezed, sometimes awkwardly, onto a new platform. In 1972, Invasion was released for the Magnavox Odyssey. It was Risk, essentially, but with Pong-like battles that were fought on top of overlays that had to be slapped on the front of the television. Aside from the battles, Invasion was mostly played on a physical board, so the actual strategy game didn’t really take place on the console at all. The Odyssey’s limited capabilities … [Read more...] about The history of the strategy game
THE PCG Q&AFind previous editions of the PC Gamer Q&A here. Here are some highlights:- What game did you finish despite hating every minute of it? - What game's graphics blew you away the most when it came out?What's your least favorite entry in an otherwise good series? Reigns: Game of Thrones, a crossover between Tinder-like ruling sim Reigns and HBO's series about sad people wearing furs, might be the best GoT game made yet. That isn't a huge compliment, as the Telltale series was nothing special, but we quite like Reigns, so it's probably worth a go for Ice and Fire fans. Comparisons aside, the crossover was a good match (hah), and an interesting one. Often, licensed games are designed to the specifications of the source material—in a game about Spider-man, you have to sling webs, right? But now and then things happen the other way around, and a film or TV show is worked into an established game design idea. Telltale does this, and Jurassic World Evolution … [Read more...] about Which game would you cross with your favorite TV show or film?
Mike Laidlaw can still remember his first day at BioWare, even though it was over 15 years ago. He even remembers the date he answered the phone and found out he had got the job: 23rd December 2002. Laidlaw was used to answering the phone; at the time he was working at Bell, Canada's largest telecommunications company, in the province of Ontario. When Laidlaw first joined Bell's call centre, he worked the phones. Later, he got promoted to lead a team on the phones, "which was somehow way worse than being on the phones," Laidlaw told me last March, the day after his star turn at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. "I went in and said, I'm sorry, I'm quitting. I'm not coming in tomorrow. They said, 'you can't quit two days before Christmas! If you quit you'll never work here again!' I said, 'that is pretty much the plan, yes.' So I walked out, and a bunch of people high-fived me because - yay! - I got out."We're upstairs at Zero Zero, a pizza and pasta place just a 10-minute … [Read more...] about Being the boss of Dragon Age
MEPs grilling Mark Zuckerberg in the European Parliament told the Facebook founder that he has lost control over his firm's social media empire. The 34-year-old tech tsar was asked if he'd cooperate with European antitrust authorities to see if his company has a web monopoly. The move would see Facebook forced to split off its messaging apps Messenger and WhatsApp (which together boast over 2.5 billion users), leaving it with just Instagram, suggested MEP Guy Verhofstadt. “Could you or would you cooperate with the European antitrust authorities … and to open your books to see, yes or no, if there is a monopoly?,” said Verhofstadt, who heads the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe. “I really think we have a big problem here and I think it’s not solved by saying ‘we’re going to fix it ourselves,'” he added, referring to Facebook's preference for self-regulation over external scrutiny. Zuckerberg had started off … [Read more...] about MEPs say Zuckerberg has lost control of Facebook’s social media empire