Game-related ramblings.

Tag: Double Fine Productions

Psychonauts 2 Is Fantastic

As always, you may click on images to view larger versions.

Roughly two months ago, I wrote about Psychonauts, which I was replaying in order to get ready for its crowdfunded sequel, Psychonauts 2, which released on August 25. The original Psychonauts is a wonderful game that I encourage everyone to play. I thought I’d take a break and play something else before tackling the sequel, but then I decided to just jump right in. I’m glad I did. Psychonauts 2 is brilliant, managing to improve upon its classic predecessor in every way. I don’t play enough games to be able to make a judgment about the best games released each year, but it’s hard to imagine anything topping this. I recommend it without reservation. Go play it! If you need further convincing, I’ve written more thoughts on Psychonauts 2 below, which I’ve tried to keep as spoiler-free as possible.

Psychonauts Is Still Great

This is Keeping Score, a series about games and their soundtracks. As always, you may click on images to view larger versions.

Later this month (at the time of writing), Psychonauts 2 will be released into the wild. In an unusual attempt at timeliness, I endeavored to replay the original Psychonauts before that happened, and lo, I have succeeded. Of course, I’ll probably play something else in between and not get to Psychonauts 2 until months later, but that’s beside the point. The point is that Psychonauts is still great, and I’m eager to play the sequel.

Broken Age Is Finished And I Like It A Lot

I wrote about Act 1 of Broken Age nearly a year and a half ago. The full game was released back in April, and I went back and played through the whole thing, ready to provide my final thoughts. Initially I thought I would write about the entire, complete game, ignoring the fact that it had been split into two acts (a decision the design team made out of necessity rather than desire) and judging it on its own merits. But, after a few aborted attempts to do so, I realized that I couldn’t do it. I can no longer view Broken Age merely as a game, a fate I now believe was inevitable the moment Tim Schafer decided to make its development public, both by funding it through Kickstarter and by chronicling the process in documentary form. So I decided to write about all of that too.

Split, But Not Broken: Broken Age Act 1

This is as timely as my posts are ever likely to get. Act 1 of Double Fine’s point and click adventure game Broken Age was released a mere week ago; usually, months or years elapse between a game’s release and my posts about it. But the release of Broken Age is especially notable. Long before Act 1 went on sale, Broken Age was already famous for the circumstances of its creation. Tim Schafer, the industry veteran and fan-favorite developer who heads Double Fine, pitched the game (or, more accurately, proposed making an adventure game in general) on Kickstarter roughly two years ago, and the overwhelming response opened the doors for countless other game projects seeking crowdfunding. From other industry veterans to untested indie teams, the influx of games on Kickstarter and other crowdfunding sites can be more or less pinned on Tim Schafer, and everyone wants to see how Broken Age, as the poster child for the movement, is going to turn out.

It’s undeniably exciting, and certainly worth discussing, but I think Broken Age deserves to be judged on its own merits. So, much like Broken Age itself, I’ve split this post into two parts: the first covers the history behind the genre and the development of Broken Age, and the second discusses the actual game. Read on.

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