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Minibytes – Everything

There’s not a lot to Everything, the sandbox game created by David O’Reilly and published by Double Fine Presents, whose description boasts that it “will give you a new perspective on life.”. There’s not much to discuss in terms of the gameplay mechanics, which consist of exploring various macro and microcosms of the universe while inhabiting animals, plants, atoms, shapes, buildings, continents, galaxies and, well, see the title. Each of these can move, make sounds, gather or release more of themselves nearby, and dance. You can find snippets of text uttered by other elements in the landscape, and there are audio recordings by the late philosopher Alan Watts. There’s not much more to it than that. The visuals aren’t breathtaking but are very much suited to the game’s purpose, the score is excellent, and the grainy, lo-fi sound of Alan Watts’ voice smoothly eases you through the entire experience.

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By A Different Token

If you’re a gamer living in Ireland then chances are you more than likely already know about The R.A.G.E. Operating out of Fade Street in Dublin. They’ve been purveyors of quality vinyls and retro games since 2010, and announced in March that they would be opening a bar/restaurant/arcade called Token in May. While this is great news in itself, it’s also a first for Ireland, so I dropped them a line to see if I could get a few words to mark the occasion. As it turned out they were happy to oblige! The results are below.

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Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment & Body Swap

Specter Knight could probably use a hug. Among Shovel Knight’s line-up of colourful and goofy bosses, Specter Knight comes off as that stereotypical highschool kid who hangs around the graveyard and contemplates how much everyone else sucks. As it turns out that’s not entirely without reason, as we discover in the aptly titled Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment which was released last week. The second DLC campaign for Shovel Knight, it was released alongside the body swap mode, which allows players to choose the gender and pronouns for several characters in the game.

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Shovel Knight: DLC Done Right

Shovel Knight is one of (relatively few) Kickstarter games which have enjoyed continued success following their campaign and subsequent release. The first outing by developer Yacht Club Games, it shattered it’s original campaign goal of $75,000 when it launched in March 2013, finishing at an impressive $311,502. It promised a return to the challenging platformer of the NES era, with a lush 8-bit aesthetic to match. Come release day in June of 2014, it was clear that it had delivered. Met with widespread acclaim, it currently averages a Metacritic score of 90/100 across seven consoles. There was little time for the devs to rest on their laurels, however, as every one of the stretch goals they had set were met during the initial campaign.

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