Author Archives: Austin Garcia

About

Austin is a 20 year old engineering student from Miami, FL who embarked on an epic quest to overthrow the Galactic Empire. It didn't work out so well . . . so he decided to spend his time here instead. He enjoys games such as Uncharted, Assassin's Creed, Pokemon, Mass Effect, and any other game where he can get easy achievements/trophies. He fervently wishes he could be adopted by Drew Brees and Stephen Colbert while fulfilling his lifelong dream to become a caped crusader and instill fear into the hearts of the criminals of Gotham.

Women in Gaming (Part I) – Making Games

“I just have one question for people who think that women don’t want to work in games: have you asked them?” – Elizabeth Sampat (Storm8 senior game designer), GDC 2014 A panel at the Game Developer’s Conference last month, game designer Elizabeth Sampat offered her personal insight to the misconceptions surrounding women in the gaming industry. Myths that women “don’t want to work in games” and that there are “no female candidates” are in her wise words: “bullshit.” Studies and [...]

Volt Review – Electrifying? Not so much

“For substantially all ideas are second-hand, consciously and unconsciously drawn from a million outside sources” – Mark Twain In today’s age when you can have hundreds of copies capitalizing on the success of a single game (i.e. the numerous Flappy Bird clones), it is hard to come up with a truly original idea. To a degree, it is the art forgers of today who display more skill and technique, copying paintings detail for detail, than the masters of old. There [...]

LEGO The Hobbit Review – Going on an Adventure

Over the past 9 years, the LEGO series has evolved into an established franchise in the same vein as Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed. Annual installments may have diminished the original luster of the series but each one is still a great game on its own. Developer Traveller’s Tales follow their established formula of taking a popular entertainment franchise and “LEGO-fying” it into a family-fun experience that captures the spirit of the source material. And just like the last [...]

PAX East – Strife Hands-On Impressions

As a complete newcomer to the MOBA genre, there was a large intimidation factor that prevented me from trying them. The wealth of information and the intensity of other players gave me the feeling that I’d have to study the game like a final exam before I ever loaded it up. Fortunately, Strife is made for players just like myself who have never tried a MOBA but are willing to try. Years ago, the developers at S2 Games set themselves [...]

PAX East – Game of Thrones: Ascent Hands-Off Impressions

When I saw the words “Game of Thrones” written down on the schedule for PAX East, my eyes widened and I rushed to the computer to sign up. The day came and I ran down to the showfloor to Disruptor Beams’ booth…. and I was sadly disappointed. Game of Thrones: Ascent is a social strategy game that is set in the realm of Westeros that has players take on the identity of a lowly noble in a minor house. Your [...]

PAX East – Valiant Hearts: The Great War Hands-On Impressions

While most associate Ubisoft with big blockbuster franchises like Assassin’s Creed and the upcoming Watch Dogs, they recently gave the greenlight to two smaller passion projects from their internal staff. Child of Light has received high praises recently and its counterpart, Valiant Hearts: The Great War, deserves just as much. A 2D puzzle adventure, Ubisoft Montpelier’s latest work has charming gameplay. While a bit too simple to offer any sort of challenge (most likely due to the nature of the [...]

PAX East – Wolfenstein: The New Order Hands-On Impressions

An interesting alternate history bent, Wolfenstein: The New Order seems to be a good game but perhaps a bit too similar to the other comparable FPS’s on the market. In the world of Wolfenstein, General Deathshead is a scientist who provides the Nazis with remarkable advanced technology. Advanced weaponry, cybernetic soldiers, giant mechanical dogs and even bigger robots rain fire and death on the allied forces. Playing as Captain B.J. Blazkowicz, your goal is to eliminate General Deathshead in order to halt [...]

PAX East – Dyscourse Hands-On Impressions

The greatest part about being an indie developer is the the ability to take an idea that you like and just run with it. You can focus on the game aspects that you want without being bogged down by any other constraints. Developer Owlchemy Labs took the idea of narrative choices, and they’ve gone further with it than others dare to even try. Dyscourse is a game that is all about narrative choices. As a victim of a plane crash, [...]

PAX East – Imagine Me Hands-On Impressions

Born out of a colorful story, Imagine Me is a beautiful action platformer that provides a simple and fun experience that holds great promise. Imagine Me actually started as a solo passion project of Christopher Figueroa when he was an employee for Activision. After he posted the game on Kickstarter, Activision asked him to take it down but he decided to leave the company so that he could continue his project. After working on the game and receiving positive feedback, [...]

PAX East – Don’t Starve: Reign of Giants DLC Hands-On Impressions

After I was introduced to Don’t Starve by PlayStation (the game is free for PS+ Members), I was instantly in love. Don’t Starve is challenging and addictive with a twisted sense of humor. Think Minecraft with a Tim Burton art style except where you’re constantly under threat of being killed. Besides the obvious danger of starving to death, Don’t Starve features enemies and environmental elements that persistently aim to kill you and it is up to the player to manage [...]

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