After the staggering success of Payday 2, publisher 505 Games invited us along to a show & tell of all their latest and upcoming games. This included the arena FPS deathmatch Rekoil; the Kickstarter funded, ultra realistic Takedown; zombie bashing in How to Survive; 80s action pastiche Marlow Briggs; and the co-op mousebrained puzzler in Tiny Brainz. Ultimately, there was a lot there for us to get our hands on and a lot to look forward to from 505.

505 Games previews

Marlow Briggs – PC, Xbox

Marlow Briggs Screenshot

Pushed as a ‘tongue in cheek’ third person action game, this is game is all about death and destruction. Your hero is a regular fella, trying to free his mrs from a kidnapping, evil corporation, resurrected and powered by a supernatural Mayan death mask (who won’t shut the hell up). The game runs smoothly and quickly, the platform style challenges barely require thought and the bosses, whilst being quite cinematic, are a cinch. Chaining moves together to hack, slash and magically eviscerate the henchmen is great fun… for a while. After some time playing the game, I can see this becoming quite tedious though. The humour is ever present and that is what makes the game ultimately enjoyable: chuckling away at the witty banter, the odd escapes and the daft unrealistic moments. A good shout from 505 Games, although it can get a bit samey – especially the mini-games.

Takedown – PC, Xbox Live

Take Down Screenshot

Kickstarter has become the haven of obscure games, helping to publish those most would not. Takedown would fit into that category quite well, as a realistic tactical FPS, published by 505 Games. ‘Realistic’ is crucial here, and it couldn’t be any more essential to the game – whilst it may have the feel of many classic counter-terrorist games, what’s different here is how you structure your team, your fit outs, your tactics and your general abilities. In many instances it is a 1 shot kill, no Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Commando here, you need to keep your head down, move carefully, and take real care to eliminate your targets without getting seen or hit. In single player, when you go down you jump into the next body in your team, a bit painfully though their fit out isn’t changeable. If you are tired of rocket launchers smashing you into the ground in COD, and want to try something far more challenging, then give this a go. WARNING: If you do not have the patience of a saint, do not play this game!

Rekoil – Xbox, PC

Rekoil Screenshot

Counter Strike Source was always my favourite FPS (still is), and Rekoil looks to distill the FPS arena game to its essentials whilst adding a few additional features. The game has been developed with eSports in mind, with up to 24 players occupying typically small arenas in a deathmatch game. 10 maps, 40 weapons and mods (on the PC), mean there is plenty of variety to suit all sorts, sadly this includes your campers. It was a quick game to pick up and play and you can easily lose time if you’re good and playing with decent opponents – but if you’re stuck with 14 year olds telling you about their apparent sexual conquest of your matriarch, it will suffer. However, the game play is certainly good fun and fast paced, helping its eSports credentials. In fact, the more interesting thing about the game is it is designed with integration of the most important eSports facilities (spectators, Twitch TV, LAN support and replay functions). If only the graphics on offer matched up to this, as looked like they were still back in the early CS days.

How To Survive – PC, Xbox, PSN, Wii U

How to Survive Screenshot

Zombies eh, they seem to be everywhere these days! Whilst How to Survive is yet another game dropping into the crowded genre, it certainly manages to make a few little waves. Set on an island overrun by the damned flesh eaters, the game combines the sort of survival tactics of Bear Grylls, with a few dashes of Resident Evil, Alone in the Dark and maybe just a hint of TV’s The Prisoner. You have to survive by finding a camp, hunting for food, getting drinking water and making fires to scare off the freaky night time creatures, not to mention catching a few Zzz’s. The island you’re stuck on is full of total junk, but junk + junk = weapons. Similarly, plants and be combined to make healing potions. There’s also a skill tree to work on, and different types of character to play… How to Survive is complicated, quite deep and Kovac’s Guide to Survival had us laughing when we should really have been paying attention! Check out the trailer for the How to Survive here.

Tiny Brainz – November 29th Release

The odd one out in the line-up here, there were no guns, no hungry zombies and no hacking and slashing. Instead, Tiny Brainz is a complicated co-op puzzler requiring 4 people to control some superpowered mice, each with a unique ability, to navigate through tricky puzzles. Once you get a puzzle solved, its easy, but sometimes the hard part is just figuring it out. Working together is key, and, quite frankly, it can be a heap of fun. I could image some of the family round a screen on Christmas afternoon playing their way through this, rather than starting the usual arguments over the Monopoly board. 505 Games look to be trying something new and different, and for this, we are appreciative, although this isn’t really our cup of tea.

So there we have it, a host of games coming soon (or already out) courtesy of publishers 505 Games. Anything in particular caught your eye? Let us know!

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