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Medieval History Great Battles 2010 PC June 30, 2010

Posted by pcgamesmagazine in pc games magazine.
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After the wars of Rome, the History Channel in collaboration with Slitherine Software back in the world of real-time strategy, dealing with a crucial period in European history, but nevertheless little treatment in terms of gaming, this time on our main computer we can revive the long and bloody War One Hundred Years, which opposed for over a century France and England at the turn of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. After the war was born the first draft of the future Europe, you also want to be protagonists of the event?

One Hundred Years of War
The so-called Hundred Years’ War began in 1334 when, extinguished the dynasty of Capet, the French throne was contested by Philip of Valois and King Edward III, who was the legitimate heir. The French nobility, however, supported the first, who became King of France, sparking the ire of the second, which invaded the country to assert their rights. It was a time when the French state as we know it today did not exist, and England possessed fiefs in large portions of what would become France. Conflicts between brief moments of respite and the clash lasted until 1453.
The importance of this conflict is manifold, and many historians today see you out along the European Middle Ages. Certainly the idea of war was finally overcome romantic, based on a concept of honor that was also extended on the battlefield, made their appearance first professional armies, the English archers determined the course of many battles and debuted the first, rudimentary firearms, while the heavy cavalry, which until then had dominated European conflicts, stagnate. Also appeared in the figures which have become legend, like Joan of Arc and the Black Prince

Vive la France
Title Slitherine is a real-time strategy that places the player alternately in the role of British and French armies at different times of the ancient conflict, alternating some historical battles in numerous minor clashes, which serve the player to accumulate experience and resources. You need not worry about other things, the progression of events following that handed down by history, the only thing required is to win the battles to control up to twenty different units between infantry, cavalry and archers.
The first thing to do if you exceed the brief tutorial, you choose from a series of campaigns of increasing difficulty. Then it is transported on a map of France in the fourteenth century, on which are indicated the places of interest, some of them are selectable and give away the underlying event, which completed you unlock the next. There are also some secret, unlockable only after completing certain objectives. Most conflicts are minor and can even be tackled more times their presence is essential in the economy of the game, because each victory brings experience to our troops, making them more reliable, and resources to be spent to recruit new units.
Before you get on the battlefield you can access the camp, where we find some customization options (clothing and symbols of the unity of our army). At the same we can also observe the progress of our units, recruit and lead their new equipment, is a very important session, which occupies a good part of playing time. Each unit we may be equipment that the characteristics that distinguish it. We may decide to provide such units of archers also use spears as secondary weapon, to give way to resist cavalry charges, or rather to shield and sword, making them competitive even as infantry units, so even releasing their skills. More advances in the game more options become available, allowing a substantial customization of your army: the important thing is to have enough money and skill points to acquire power-ups that affect. Paradoxically this potentially intriguing system is being undermined by the need to revisited many times the same battles in order to increase enough to overcome the decisive battles, those that allow the progress of history. It ‘a system a bit’ recalls the long periods of level-up RPG, where movement is blocked by the need to strengthen their characters enough to overcome the end-level boss. As rapid progress in, addressing several times the same battles soon becomes very tedious task.
Besides this there is a support system embodied in special cards used in battle, but we will speak in the next section.

God Save the King
Once ready to fight not just have to choose one of the locations you want and get off the field: we expect some 70 battles, including 26 historical battles of the Hundred Years War (as Orlean and Crecy). It ‘easy to distinguish between decisive battles or optional, because the former have much more substantial descriptions of seconds. Moreover, while a generic battle can often be repeated several times, the decisive ones above are unique and advancement of the story, which makes available new scenarios.
To overcome any stage should achieve the requested, which can sometimes be simply defeat all the enemies on the ground, sometimes to catch a load, take a village to resist a cavalry charge and so forth.
The game allows you to deploy infantry, cavalry, archers and crossbowmen as well as some rudimentary guns. Each unit moves individually in the field (divided into the classic square grid, although the plot is hidden) and is freely controllable by the player: the course of the game is to place them and guide them as efficiently as possible in order to outweigh opponents: for this purpose is permitted to maintain unity in the preferred position within a predefined grid before starting the clash. In some situations, some allied units are also moved by the CPU, and in these cases the key to victory lies in the ability to move in harmony with them and support them properly.
At any time of the battle you can put the game on pause, move or to order attacks, as well as the attitude of the various units (aggressive, defensive, neutral) when ready, just press a button and the battle back in time real.
Obviously, depending on your predisposition, various units have weaknesses and strengths that will be taken into account. And so that units with shields large and unwieldy to resist good volleys of arrows, but will be vulnerable against opponents more agile and light, while a station mortars will be lethal if it were addressed frontally, but it is easy to circumvent, and so on. Compared to standard units is that of the General, leading the field in our party: although they fight like the others, this unit has much greater importance, because its mere presence creates confidence to the troops. Just for example complement a unit engaged in this battle because it gains moral, and a general down, although by no means the only defeat, will the troops under his command more likely to flee if things turn for the worse .
The outcome of the fighting is also influenced by the use of special notice cards, the player can carry around in limited numbers before each battle, these cards temporarily affect some features of the troops which are used, allied or enemy, or even change the battlefield, and can be decisive if used at the right time. And ‘possible calarle once during a battle, then intuition and timing are essential: their purpose is to simulate those that happen during a chance encounter, often influencing the point that determine the outcome.

One hundred years in a minute
Although the strategic aspect described above may seem in line with other similar products, the final yield is not fully convincing, crucially undermining the credibility and usability of the whole.
The biggest problem is the small size of maps and the speed with which the battles take place, almost all ends in a few minutes. The maps are not very big, so once the conflict began almost immediately drives come in contact, leaving little space for operation beyond the initial deployment. Usually there’s hardly time to start browsing the enemy are upon us and continue to attack until all units on the map are not put to flight. The impression is that they have little control over the situation and the final victory would affect more the number of troops that you have and their training rather than tactical approach adopted. With some exceptions, the initial deployment is also very clustered, making it difficult for units to post any circumvention or tactical alternatives. Moreover, the opponents always act the same way, then addressed a battle for the second time no longer stimuli, as we know already the tactics of the enemy: the only skill required to do so will find the best countermeasure to enemy units. The cavalry charge comes from the left? Just put there the Lancers. The armored infantry always tries to break in the middle? Just remember to reinforce it properly.

Graphics medieval
Even the technical sector is very subdued: the scenarios are bare, the poor texture, the level of detail of troops rough, rigid movements. At the most graphic detail the returns a glance overview always very poor, so as to put it mildly Spartans are the menus. If nothing else, the low hardware demands let you play the title Slitherine with older computers.
The standard view is a bird and allows for a discreet glance on the battlefield, freely explorable with the arrow keys and easy to grasp through a mini-map indicating the disposition of enemy and friendly units: No surprises, then , no fog of war to conceal the movements of enemies. It ‘may be possible to bring the visual to graze the land, if you want a closer look at the troops.
Collaboration with the History Channel reveals itself in moments before the historic battles when the movie is a quick explanation that mixes documentary footage from the issuer in sequences created with the graphics of the game but the video resolution is rather low, the colors desaturated and the difference between movies and computer graphics to tell the poor little jarring. Furthermore the information provided is too succinct, would be a better sort of narrative context that go on, battle after battle, until the natural conclusion of the events. If nothing else the sound is localized in Italian, for a perfect understanding of everything. To complete the appearance of discussion include the inevitable sound medievaleggiante dance music accompanying the action nicely, as the navigation between the various game menu.
The longevity benefit from the presence of three campaigns of increasing difficulty, as well as an online mode in which to deal with other human players, hosting a game or joining a session created by others, in fighting against a rigid one. On completion of all signal the presence of an editor that allows you to create your own custom army, for use in online battles, in which case the available resources are predetermined, so as to ensure equal opportunities for all contenders. Also by registering the game online you can share their statistics with those of other players.

To play online enough Medieval History Great Battles a registered copy of the game and an ADSL connection

Windows ® XP / Vista
Pentium 4 or equivalent
512MB RAM (XP) or 1GB RAM (Vista)
DirectX video card 128Mb
DVD ROM Drive (not required for Digital Delivery version)
DirectX compatible sound card
DirectX 9.0c (included in installation file)

On balance this is a Medieval History Great Battles title discreet, passionate but not what could and should. While the historical reconstruction is accurate and movies dell’History Channel add that item learning generally absent in other similar products, the other the poor technical quality and yield of battles involving little too repetitive and boring in the long run risk the player.
A product for fans only.


Zombie Driver PC Game 2010 June 26, 2010

Posted by pcgamesmagazine in pc games magazine.
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Developers EXOR Studios launched with their first project payment distributed by Digital Download platform Steam. Leaving behind the puzzle game created for social networks by cartoony graphics are thrown into a more dark and mature with Zombie Driver action driving game that is based primarily on two titles that did rage in the nineties: the original GTA and Carmageddon. Since first taking a top view and control system of means, the second all the violence and blood at the time led to what happened under such a stir.

Zombies are not enough
In Zombie Drivers will be the only survivor with a means of transportation in a city overrun by zombies and completely closed in quarantine. The army is powerless before this epidemic and before nuclearized the town will ask you to save a few survivors holed up in various buildings scattered around the game map. As a good and honest citizens who are not sure you can escape from bringing aid to the needy, deciding to accommodate requests for assistance and endanger your own lives to save those of others. Driving your car through the streets infested city you get the points indicated and take people barricaded before the zombies manage to break through barricades and make a nice banquet. The indicators on the screen edge you will mark the way forward, distance and time remaining to complete the mission before its bankruptcy. To complicate life, there will be only the undead seeking to block the road: Although only a zombie does not create any problem, the masses of walking corpses that are opposite opinions in danger of stopping the vehicle you are driving with the consequent destruction it, causing your premature demise. In addition to the main objectives each mission also offers sub-missions that will require you to make such a clean sweep in an area infested or return to base within a time limit. That way you can earn the money necessary to make new weaponry and improvements for your vehicles, or even receive in the event of new special events. Will leave it only with your yellow cab but gradually the main story will be delivered will develop new means of transport, allowing you to develop a final fleet consists of seven vehicles. Every car with the three core values that set and speed, and armor piercing power: up to you to modify them to fit the best way to deal with your missions, you then decide to stake everything on speed to dodge obstacles or choose to lock up your vehicle to ensure that steps zombie like a hot knife through butter. The other key element in the choice of means is certainly its capacity, a normal car can carry up to four passengers while the ambulance or limousine it can carry up to six. Just get the bus but your doubts will vanish as a tool to use, because this zombie-massacre on wheels will undoubtedly show your favorite metal. Terribly slow and unmanageable through the narrow lanes, but has the strength and ability to break through the highest among all vehicles and can carry up to forty people at once (as many civilian mission is seen in a twelve elements) which will ensure a single round to collect all the hostages, thus making up the top speed and also allowing you to complete missions in a short time. As you advance in levels will also increase the types of zombies to deal with, because there are five varieties: those of normal dogs, those capable of launching cans or other objects and robust ones that slow down your ride. However none of them manage to get seriously in trouble and you should therefore pay attention to only real threat in the game, represented by huge zombie explosives, which erupt once you reach seriously damaging and killing all nearby. To avoid hitting you, the Army also will provide arms to be mounted on vehicles, so you can rely on a valuable arsenal will include heavy machine guns, a rocket launcher, a flamethrower and a powerful laser capable of killing dozens of zombies at once. You will be able to reinforce all these weapons in your garage for three levels in order to increase the capacity to give or get a higher volume of fire, even if a mission can only use one at a time. Scattered around the city there are various bonuses fact necessary to choose the equipment to be used to reload ammunition and also you will find special power-ups that will guarantee the nitro to go faster for short or instant repairs for the vehicle. The total longevity of the title stands on six hours of play total, the campaign unfolds in 17 main missions of the overall total duration of four hours. And ‘Slaughter also present mode in which you survive zombie attacks more and more in particular areas of the board, relying only on your ability to pilot equipment and the few that appear between a wave and another.

A zombie, five pieces
The graphics engine used by Zombie Driver is the well-known open source Ogre 3D graphics is clean and is as detailed models of cars that the zombies, making it pleasant to see. Splatter lovers become involved by trails of blood left on the tires and scraps of zombie splattering everywhere, although unfortunately the thirst for destruction will stop here. Except for a few elements of the scenario, such as benches and wooden fences, most of the rest of the city will be indestructible. Bouncing off buildings and iron barriers without even damaged while all vegetation will be crossed as if did not exist in this respect would have been preferable greater attention to detail and a greater attention to detail. Between the two cameras available, both shot from above, the fixed is the only truly enjoyable, while the other is likely to cause nausea to play much more easily than the sight of zombies to pieces on the screen. The audio does his duty only in sound effects because the music will be quickly forgotten if not completely extinguished because of their annoying repetitiveness. The control system of the vehicle is entrusted to the WASD keys, where the S key is assigned to the brake that is the reverse, for the handbrake will use the space bar and the control key or left mouse button to fire with weapons equipped. The car felt so dear: after only a few minutes of the campaign the player will have full mastery of the medium and you can have fun with drift-kill zombies and unlikely spin on the bodies, making them feel the difference especially in the corners if you are using a fast race car than a truck. Zombie Driver allows you to record your best scores and compare the charts online mode Slaughter, as well as automatically publish the achievement obtained on Facebook and Twitter, but is missing a full multiplayer mode, which would surely have secured the title most longevity. The game can fortunately enjoy some free add-ons created by fans that bring something new like the special rescue missions at night or in a town shrouded in fog, but leaving intact the main gaming system.

OS: Windows 7/Vista/XP (Only)
Processor: 1.6 GHz Intel Pentium or AMD Athlon equivalent
Memory: 1GB
Graphics: 128 MB graphics card compatible with DirectX 9.0c or higher PixelShader 3.0
DirectX ®: 9.0c
Hard Drive: 800MB free space
Sound: DirectX 9.0c compatible sound card

OS: Windows 7/Vista/XP (Only)
Processor: 2.0 GHz dual core processor
Memory: 2GB
Graphics: 512 MB graphics card compatible with DirectX 9.0c or higher PixelShader 3.0
DirectX ®: 9.0c
Hard Drive: 800MB free space
Sound: DirectX 9.0c compatible sound card

Final Remarks
Zombie Driver is damn funny during the first hour after the bloody boring. To be a zombie game has everything you need: nurse to be saved from the hungry undead, gallons of blood on the screen, turning cars into tanks of death with spurs and weapons and also a great final twist in the plot, Romero-style. Unfortunately the rest of the game is reduced to make the first mission seventeen times waiting to unlock some new vehicle, and nothing more. The city where the story takes place is very small and the lack of a mini-map interface will lead the player to walk the shortest route already known to him returning a nagging sense of deja vu. A game “and playing on,” that will leave willingly buy and play only hardcore fans of zombies, also saw the reduced price of 10 €.