And Now, More from Relic

It’s like All Relic, All the Time up in here. I don’t know how these guys do it, but they just churn out quality Are Tee Ess action non-stop.

I missed mentioning it, but the Dawn of War II beta demo, a game that I’ve been looking forward to since almost a year ago, released Tuesday on Steam. Downloading now and very excited to check it out.

I applaud Relic for putting DoW II out there like this. They must have confidence in the game to have a public beta demo on the world’s biggest digital content distribution mechanism. Will update with details!

Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor

As anyone who knows me knows, Company of Heroes has been one of my favorite games of the past two years. It’s been over a year since the last expansion, and nearly three since the original game released. Now a third expansion looms, entitled Tales of Valor.

Slated for an April launch, Tales of Valor again expands on the core gameplay of Company of Heroes with additional campaigns, vehicles, and multiplayer game modes. Similar to the previous expansion Opposing Fronts, Tales of Valor will be a stand-alone game, not requiring either previous game to play and enjoy.

I find the new campaign segments interesting, as they are reported to focus on smaller groups, where Relic can create a narrative surrounding a small group of soldiers that you control. I am a huge fan of the award-winning HBO mini-series Band of Brothers, and this gameplay mode makes me think of the events portrayed in that show. Relic may manage to capture the heroic and desperate feel of wartime action, reaching a higher level of story-telling within the gaming arena. I’m very much looking forward to it.

A Little Company with Friends

Hit up some Company of Heroes last night with some buddies. Always a blast. We played a couple matches, the last on the great map Route N13. Rolling as the Germans, nothing more fun that seven Panther tanks all in a row — nice Mike!

The new expansion to CoH, Tales of Valor, is slated for an April release. Definately looking forward to that.

World of Goo Music Download

Dear Blizzard, NCSoft, Ubisoft, and EA,

Hire Kyle Gabler to make the music in your games.

Love,

Nick

Seriously, as much as I enjoyed World of Goo (which I recently finished, which was hilarious), I desperately hope that Gabler gets more work, or goes on to do other projects. He’s recently made the music from the game available free of charge. The soundtrack is just one fantastic aspect of a fantastic game. Go snag it, and then maybe buy the game if you haven’t already. It’s one of the best titles of 2008. PC or Wii, great on both platforms.

Burnout Paradise

I picked up Burnout Paradise over the weekend. It’s a title I’ve been planning to get for some time, but since I finished the Valkyria Chronicles story mode, I have more space for another game. I haven’t had a ton of time with it, but already the quality of this game shows.

First of all, I love the open world and unlocked feel of the game. Too many open-world games fall into the same trap: it’s not really that open. To get to other areas, you have to unlock this or that, proceed through levels or something. That might make sense in some areas, but in a racer, you have a car. Just drive anywhere. Burnout Paradise really busts all those barriers down and just turns you loose in the city.

Which can certainly be daunting. The city is big. Really big. Big enough to get lost in. Thankfully there’s almost always an event at the next intersection, rewarding your aimless wanderings. It’s fun to just cruise around and find an event here and there, finish that, and pick up from the finish line again.

The cool unlockables are in the form of cars and bikes. It’s always fun to collect hot rides, and you don’t just buy them — you win them. You have to take down that car cruising around before you can run it yourself.

The racing is fun, the game looks great, and the open world nature of the game rewards you for crusing around and plain just playing the game. Definately a lot of fun.

Madworld

Definitely not the typical warm and fuzzy Wii game, Madworld pits you as the contestant within an ultra-violent game show in which you must murder the denizens of an enclosed arena within a certain time limit. You can use chainsaws, fists, spiked bats, and more. Yeah, not pulling any punches. The visuals are unique to the video game space, but appear to borrow heavily from movies such as Sin City and The Spirit. While I applaud the game, it’s probably not one I’ll be into. Gamespot has more to say as well in their review.

Red Alert 3: Uprising

I just learned about the upcoming expansion to 2008’s Red Alert 3. Entitled Uprising, the expansion will feature new campaigns and a new game mode call Commander Challenge, a type of persistent skirmish mode. In this mode, you face ever-escalating waves of foes, and you keep your units and resources presumably, along the way. Sounds like fun. Uprising is coming out in March.