Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Beyond Freeport - A Non-Campaign Gang War

Greetings friends!

So currently my hobby time at home is being spent not on play testing but instead painting the very models I use as proxies for Gang War.
- I blame the truly awesome Nomad Geckos I got last week.

In the meantime allow me to introduce you to a side project which is due once the Gang War beta concludes:

Beyond Freeport
For those familiar with the First Law: Override lore, you will know that Freeport is the base of operations for the Raiders; a Reaver sponsor comprising of ex-military soldiers.

What you probably don't know is about is the Freeport Arena.

Established shortly after the Raiders settled Freeport, the Arena was originally designed as a training facility putting Raiders in real life style encounters while heavily reducing the actual risk of death thanks to the very expensive and limited Respawn technology pioneered by Nultec Industries.

The Arena itself is a modular site roughly the size of a city block and able to be arranged to create an almost unlimited series of locations due to it's various modules.

Surrounding the Area is a large technological net that monitors the electrical impulses of those within. This is done via dermal implants for organic life forms and special transmitter chips for synthetics. As soon as the tech-net detects the death of a chipped user they are teleported out of the Arena to a specialised onsite facility where they are either patched up or rebuilt on the molecular level.

What this means is that any Arena participants feel pain and know exactly what it means to reach the point of death, however while they are under the control of the Tech-Net and their transponder chips are fully functioning, they can not die.

This provides the spectators and benefactors with an unkillable supply of combatants who despite the lack of mortality will still participate in Arena Games realistically due to their desire to avoid pain and near-death.

Since it's success as a training module, the Raiders opened the Arena gates to any other Sponsor to participate in doing so creating more varied practice fights for the raiders themselves, and within a matter of months springing up an in demand sport around these events.


What does this mean for Gang War?

Well once the beta has concluded and skills, weapons & races have been ironed out, we will then see Beyond Freeport begin as its own beta.

Beyond Freeport, much like Gang War pits sponsored teams against each other, however unlike Gang War, Beyond Freeport will not feature a campaign system. Instead you will be hiring Veteran Sponsored Agents. These will range from the generic no-name grunts employed by UEF as soldiers to the invisibly cloaked sniper-elites of the Wraiths.

These Agents will feature as the complete package with skills and weapon/equipment load outs 'as-is'. Playing games in the Arena does not give them experience and additional skills, nor does being KO'd in the arena generate injuries. Instead each Veteran Agent comes in the form of a stat-card allowing for teams to be formed.


In a gameplay direction this allows for more rigid tournament-friendly games to be played. The rules will be identical to Gang War, it will only be the 'post game' campaign rules that will be missing. What this also means is that if you go to a venue and try and play a 200 Notoriety game vs another player, then you should be balanced in gameplay against them. In a campaign game this is never possible as a Gang is constantly in flux as they earn experience and suffer casualties.

- Essentially we are looking at the exact same game rules, only played a different way.

You might be wondering why this will be waiting until after the Gang War beta has concluded? Simple really; I can't concoct characters with different weapon, stat and skill combos without already establishing what those are, and that comes in during the Gang War beta phase.

So if you want to help this project move on just let me know!

Until next time; stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Monday, 23 February 2015

Gang War Missions pt2: Domination!

Greetings friends!

So despite the best of intentions we don't have a new rules pack following the weekend, but that's ok. Instead today I bring you the second of two new missions that should feature in the new rules pack when it does come out later on this week.


As with the last mission, this one too is heavily inspired by competitive FPS game modes and those familiar with Unreal Tournament will be very familiar with this game mode.

Essentially as are looking at a normal map laid out as the same as others we've had so far however this one has a single Domination point in the centre of the map. This point is the size of a 25mm base to match those used in the game. Only Units that fit on the Domination Point (or Dom Point) 100% are eligible to gain the rewards from doing so.

At the end of every turn, if one side has a unit completely covering the Dom Point and is not Engaged by an enemy unit in melee; that side is awarded 1 Point.

First side to (3?) points wins the game.

Note: to Activate a Dom Point allowing you to claim your point, it must be Hacked. Once a Unit is located within the Dom Point the Dom Point is considered to be Locked Open to that team and can only be unlocked by removing the Unit from its location on top of the Dom Point. In doing so the Dom Point reverts back to a Locked Closed state automatically requiring a new Hack to allow it to be activated again.

Dom Points do not need to be from sequential turns, so it can swap sides as many as required before one side receives the magic number and wins.

As an aside there will also be an alternative made available; Double Domination. This is the same as Domination, however it has TWO Dom Points, both located within the middle half of the board and the score requirement is upped to 5!

Therefore if you can nab both Dom Points and hold them, you are looking at 2 points a turn! So where as normal Domination is a scrap to grab the Dom Point and hold it as long as possible; Double Domination has similar debates as Data Capture in terms of how do you split your force, do you try and focus on grabbing and holding the nearest Dom Point, trenching your Gang in and trying to grab your points, or do you split up, try and grab both points but in doing so make both teams vulnerable?


And so ends the new missions. Yes this makes 3 new ones, but I don't really consider Double Dom as anything really separate, even though it will be on the mission table. This takes us to a total of 5. Once I have worked out how to compile Assault on Precinct 313 that will give us 6! Perfect for a single dice roll table!!

On that note; stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Friday, 20 February 2015

Gang War Missions: Data Capture

Greetings friends!

So this weekend we will see the latest build of Gang War being tested, along with the introduction of two new missions!

For both of these I'm aiming to recreate classic FPS games - the first:

Data Capture
Like the first mission Data Rush; Data Capture involves two sides on opposite deployments competing to do the same objective - Hack a Data Terminal and get to their drop zone. The difference here is that they are not going for the same Data Terminal.

Data Capture is Gang War's take on the classic game mode: Capture the Flag (CTF).

In this game mode both sides place within their deployment a Data Terminal. Their objective is to get to the opponent's terminal and back to your own terminal before the opponent does the same.

The differences here with Data Rush are subtle but far reaching. Data Rush is all about grabbing the objective and keeping it long enough for a hack to complete before getting to your own dropoff. The objective is only halfway in the board so that forces a confrontation there.

Data Capture however requires you to travel all the way to the opponents deployment. In no way an easy feat.
- In addition there are 2 further rules: the data points must be protected behind a door. This door is NON-HACKABLE, it must be destroyed, and it is tough, think 4 Wounds with Heavy Armour.
-- Another option is to make the door hackable, but something like HD8 so it's really hard.

To aid with getting through this tough ass door within both side's deployments, both teams start off with an ExoSuit within their deployment area. These ExoSuits are located after deployment and everything else has happened and it is placed by the opposing team player, so you are going to have to either be very smart with deployment or have a bit of a run on your hands to get your ExoSuit.

Now the ExoSuit is something that I've been looking forward to a lot and I can't wait to see these in use. Essentially they are manually controlled mechs, only their controls are inside the mech. Think of something like Powerloaders from Aliens or the mech suits used in Avatar - actually, thinking about it, just watch almost any James Cameron film and you'll find an ExoSuit.

These are large robotic models which have the DigI trait as well as two Hack Durations!

The first HD is: Unmanned HD1 requiring only a single successful Hack to do. This unlocks the ExoSuit for use by any friendly units.

The second HD is: Manned HD2. So it's harder to do when it is manned, but when successful it Auto-Ejects whoever is currently inside the ExoSuit as it shuts down and prepares to accept new orders from the new team.

When in use the ExoSuit doesn't actually have a stat profile itself, instead it augments the stats of whoever is using the ExoSuit. This takes the form of giving the Unit Heavy Armour, but with none of the stat penalties that Heavy Armour provides. It also comes equipped with both a Kn-HMG and a 2-Handed Melee weapon. But it is not an I-WIN button. For starters using an ExoSuit doesn't stack with your current armour meaning you 'only' count as having Heavy Armour. Plus it does not have that much space inside, so Units equipped with Heavy Armour will not fit. Also any with traits that give them a height profile of more than 2 will not fit.
Last but not least, the ExoSuit interfaces directly with the users brainwaves in the exact same way as Hacker Wetware interfaces. If a Hacker attempts to connect with an ExoSuit manually, the result is an extremely painful digital feedback forcing the Hacker into a digitally simulated coma where their nerves are wracked with continuous pain. In other words, Hackers can't use ExoSuits.

This gives players two options:

Option 1 - Kill the enemy. That is always an option, but it is time consuming.

Option 2 - Capture the Data! As soon as one side reaches their own Data Point while 'holding' the enemy team's data you have an auto-win situation available.

Now Option 2 has two variants of its own:

2a). Use the ExoSuit to punch through the protective door and provide cover for your Hacker as it tries to recover the Data and get back home.

2b). Use the ExoSuit to protect your own Data Port and try and stop the enemy Hacker from accessing your Data.

Both of these are risky. Your Data needs to be protected, but at the same time the enemy's Data needs to be captured.

How you resolve this should result in a high impact conflict where quick thinking and terrain manipulation is just as important as having the highest stat ingame.


That's it for now. Next time I'll be covering the other mission in progress. For you UT fans this should bring on some good memories: DOMINATION!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Why there should never be an Alien 5

Greetings friends!

So by now you have all probably seen this big news: http://www.denofgeek.com/movies/alien-5/34187/alien-5-neill-blomkamp-sequel-officially-greenlit and a good number of you are probably drooling over the idea of a new Alien film 18 years after the last one.

- Yeah let's put that in perspective, if they released Alien5 this year and made it an 18 rating, someone born on the release of Alien: Resurrection would be able to see it. That's a pretty big gap there!

The thing is, I am not one of those drooling masses. Quite the opposite. This gives me a knot in my tummy the size of Mt Everest.

Before I continue I must remind you that I am a huge fan of the Alien Saga, and by fan I mean it's true meaning of fanatic.

In my time as a collector I have owned countless toys, tshirts, comics, novels, posters etc and all four films on VHS and twice on DVD (yet to pick up on BluRay yet, but that's because I don't have a BluRay player in my GeekCave.

The first film; Alien. This is an amazing film, one of the best horror movies ever made and pretty much coined sci-fi horror as we know it today.

The second film; Aliens. My personal favourite of them all. It took what Alien did and added an action flare to it that made it just different enough. It too became the staple "marine squad" film that countless others have attempted to emulate in the years that followed.

The third film; Alien3. It was alright. It tried to mix the two, the horror of a single alien but set in a terrestrial setting. Replace the architecture of the Derelict with (originally intended) weird religious stuff and that's Alien3. It suffered because it was different (after all it did introduce the DNA Reflex) but it wasn't different enough to really set itself apart. Was it Action? Was it Horror? It wasn't really sure.

The fourth film; Alien: Resurrection. For me this is the worst of them all. Like Alien3, AR tried to mix it up a little only in reverse - lots of aliens only this time in space! Take away the weird religious stuff from Alien3 and replace it with a merged DNA/terribad newborn gumph and you have AR. But that's not the worst part for me, and it's not the chicken legs, or the finned tails or even the shit that seems to be smeared on the Alien's skin. It's the crew of the Betty, or as I call them, the crew of the Proto-Serenity.
- Yup, this film was written by Whedon which explains why the crew of the Betty have so much (in feel) to Firefly. Of course I really dislike Firefly, so that's not a good thing.
-- Of course I saw AR before Firefly, so maybe it was my dislike of AR which put me off Firefly - or maybe I just don't like Whedon's style.

Since these four films we have seen the Alien appear on the big screen in two AvP films.

I was able to accept these films because they existed as their own spin-offs. They were a separate franchise, and more importantly were not a part of the much better AvP comics/books/games franchise.
- This might sound like I'm clutching at straws, but it's true if you look into detail. The comics/novels/games etc were called Aliens vs Predator, this new franchise was Alien vs Predator. Notice the lack of plural on Alien. This sets them apart in a franchise where they forget about established incubation periods or Predator ritual and throw in a complete lack of understanding of the female reproductive system.

So where are we now?

In today's world we stand with two fantastic films, an ok one, a terribad one, a silly one and a cinematic abortion. Those are the films featuring the Alien in order of creation.

But now out of almost nowhere a new film is being made! OMG stop the presses! This could turn the tables! The Alien could be scary again! After all we also had the games Colonial Marines which was universally panned and Isolation which this blog gave it's Game of the Year award to.

This is the world we're in now and there's no going back.

I loved Colonial Marines! I played it through in it's entirety twice! But no one else did. What this means is we're not going back to the Aliens Universe. We're not going to see the events of Billy & Wilks on the big screen (Aliens: Earth Hive, Aliens: Nightmare Asylum & Aliens: The Female War. All terrific books that I recommend to everyone to read!) because the world feels burned by Marines.

They don't want to follow the story of Ripley because we've seen it. We know what happened there.

They don't want to go before Alien because we've seen that in Prometheus.

Do we want an Action film? Unlikely. The franchise has been publicly panned on a large scale for being turned into a shooting gallery where the Alien is nothing but a target for both humans and Predators.

Are we going to see it try to emulate the original? Maybe. Like I said; Alien: Isolation was a critical success! But is that what we want to see?

If we are not going to see the expanded Colonial Marine universe covered, but they want to avoid the nonsense of the 4th debacle they are going to have to set it sometime between Alien and at most 20-30 years after Alien3, and they are going to instead focus on something else. Maybe a research station, or a listening outpost in space.
Looking at who is directing this film, the same dude responsible for District 9 (pants film) and Elysium (surprisingly good once you got past the awful beginning) this is something I can see him doing with ease, and the end result will be a special effects filled experience with lots of jumps and surprises and maybe even some gunfire and improvised weapons. But will it be the film that should be made?

In my opinion; which of course is all this is. No.

It will be entertaining, but it won't push and real boundaries. In decades to come filmmakers won't look back on it and wish they could recreate it's mood or the characterisation.

So what should they do?
What film should be made to finish off the Alien Saga?

Honestly? I'd rather they didn't. They left the franchise alone when it came to the big screen.

If they wanted to really go out on a bang they would have to do something new, something different. Something that we haven't seen before in the Alien Saga on the big screen.

I'll just leave this here:

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Gang War: What's Next?

Greetings friends!

So for those following along at home you will know that we have already seen the first proper addon to Alpha Gang War. I am of course talking about Hackers, early skills and missions!

You can find the latest build (0.1.1) HERE

I'll give you all some time to read through what we have there.

All read up and up to speed?



So what's next? What should you expect in the following patches or content updates?

First up we have more missions!

I'm looking for as much input here as possible; most notably what sort of story themes are you after?

We've already got 2 Data-Hack Missions, the first being what is essentially a Hack-Off. The second is an attack vs defend mission but with a heavy focus of the long game.

One mission I am currently mulling over is an Assault on Precinct 13 style mission where the defenders have a defendable building in their half of the table which they deploy within and the attackers have to get inside and do 'something'.
- One option is an NPC assassination. Something like the classic data hack but it takes the form of a cybernetic enhanced Citizen that the defender gets to use, however it has no weapons and only light armour.
--Maybe, just maybe it could have a choice of win conditions. You can Hack the target for an auto-win, or you can kill him in which case you have to get the rest of your Gang into your deployment.


Following on from these missions we will also see Random Deployments being added!

That's right, once that build is go you will have a chance to use explosives, Auto Turrets, Exo Suits and AI Mechs!!

A lot of work is going into this right now, but when they're good to go they will be fun fun fun!

Following on we will hopefully have the next main build released in the form of the Kratel aliens!!
- Uh huh! No longer will you be limited to Human vs Human games, now it will be turned up a notch with UEF vs Red Claw. If I was ever going to feature a '2 Player Starter Box' then UEF vs Red Claw would be it, we're looking at the token Accord Agency against the token Reaver Agency! So in preparation dig out your brute non-Humans and get ready to start fighting for independence!
- Coming with the Red Claw will also be two new weapon mods in the form of Mag and Vol type weapons. You! The Mag Type weapon is the iconic UEF weapon and any Kn weapon can be upgraded to a Mag Type if you are playing UEF. Likewise the Kratel have access to the Vol type upgrade meaning that the weapons used are going to start having their own feel as well!

On that note; stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Monday, 9 February 2015

Gang War: Content Patch 0.1.1 - HACKERS!

Greetings friends!

Today I talk about what you will see in patch 0.1.1 for Gang War.

I am of course talking about Hackers.

If you have played any games of Gang War yet you will have probably found that the game is missing an X Factor, something to turn the game from a generic Shoot-Shoot, Bang-Bang game.

That X Factor is Hackers.


The Hacker is the lunch-pin of your Gang. They are the deciding factor between winning a game and loosing. They lock & unlock doors, they grab objectives, they bring back those incapacitated, they even knock out Digital Interface devices!

They are the mutts nuts at what they do, but beyond that they will get shot to hell if you allow them to.

In order to make it clear, a Hacker profile is much like that of a new recruit with a low Rg stat, even lower Ml stat, poor defence and only 3 wounds. If they get shot or punched they are going down fast.

They are unable to use 2-handed weapons or any armour beyond Light Armour.

What they do bring to the game is a Tm of 3, meaning 50% of Hacks will succeed compared to the usual Tm2 you get with Gang Members and Leaders. That stat may only be 1 digit difference, but when you are dealing with a d6, that 1 digit makes a big difference.

They also have the skill Hacker which is required in order to use Hack Decks!

- Hack Decks
A Hack Deck is a 2Handed piece of equipment that is vital to any Hacker. If your Hacker doesn't have a deck, then quite simply you are doing it wrong.

What Decks allow you to do is as follows:

Wireless Hack
- Every deck has a Hack Range meaning Hackers are able to Hack outside of the usual 1".

Hack Dice
- Decks have a different number of dice associated with them allowing for more successes in each Hack Attempt.

- Decks have a small number of Cartridge Slots. Within these slots a single Program can be slotted.

Examples of these programs are:

Roll 1successful Tm Roll. All items of equipment, armour, weapons etc with the DigI trait can not be used for the Units next Activation. Other Hackers may try to resist by rolling a single Tm roll on their Hack Dice. Range is determined by Deck's Hack Range.

- this represents what is basically an EMP being released from the Hack Deck knocking out everything with a Digital Interface including Digi Scopes, Cloaking Devices, Heavy Weapons, Heavy Armour, Mechs & Exo-Suits.

Jump Start
Complete a single Tm roll within Deck's Hack Range. Revive friendly Incapacitated Unit within Deck's Hack Range to 1Wd

This is the Hacker interfacing to the implants within each Gang Member and essentially jump starting it, much like how you would normally revive a friendly model, only it can be done at range and using more than 1d6 depending on the Deck in use.

As mentioned though, Decks have a number of Cartridge Slots. So if you have (for example) 1 Slot, but cartridges for both Black Out and Jump Start then only 1 can be equipped at a time, and swapping cartridges counts as an Interact Action.


Of course there are different types of Decks available:

The Eagle
Hack Range: 6"
Hack Dice: 1d6
Cartridge Slots: 1

The Jackhammer
Hack Range: 4"
Hack Dice: 2d6
Cartridge Slots: 1

The Bulldog
Hack Range: 4"
Hack Dice: 1d6
Cartridge Slots: 2

The standard Deck Used is the Jackhammer.

Anywho; on that note I'll leave you for now as I prep to actually write this up for inclusion with the game along with the first two Missions available (Data Dash and Firewall).

Until next time stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Data Race: A Gang War Bat|Rep

Greetings friends!

So over the weekend a fair few changes were made to the Gang War Pre-Alpha pack taking us to version number 0.0.3.

In order to give it a good test a game was staged using the following team composition:

Leader: Heavy Armour, Medium Med Kit, Digi Scope & Assault Rifle

Sniper: Medium Armour, Sniper Rifle & Light Med Kit

Grunt: Medium Armour & Assault Rifle

Both teams mirrored themselves and were split into Red vs Blue.

Shortly after the game began I realised that it was missing something, so it was restarted with the added change:


So added to the trio per side was now:

Hacker: Light Armour, Deck, Pistol.

Placed in the centre of the board was a hacking objective and the game began.

The mission: Steal data from the Objective and get to your deployment edge. First team to do so wins.

Both teams started play very differently, with Red being aggressive and running straight for the objective while Blue tried to flank the objective instead; trying to cut off any and all routes to the marker (represented by an unpainted Bounty Hunter)

Blue Sniper did everything he could to keep Red Sniper away from high raised locations while Red Leader decked out in slow moving but very strong armour laid down suppressive fire to protect Red Hacker who in turn hid behind a storage crate and began his Hack of the Objective, already completing 2 out of the 3 Hack Durations.

Knowing that time was limited; Blue pushed forward.

Blue Grunt moved around the back of the objective but was met by Red Leader who opened fire on Blue Grunt leaving him bloody but alive.

Blue Leader moved forward to distract both Red Sniper & Red Grunt who were offering protection for Red Hacker and attempted to lay down suppressive fire but bottled it and failed to pin a single unit down.

Meanwhile Red Sniper took aim at Blue Leader and released a high impact round to Blue Leader's chest leaving Blue Leader mobile but injured.

Taking advantage of the distraction given by Blue Leader; Blue Hacker moved forward trying to Engage Red Hacker to interrupt the Hack but instead was gunned down by Red Grunt in the back leaving him incapacitated on the floor.

With no way of assisting from his current vantage point, Blue Sniper jumped to the ground and sprinted with all his worth to the nearest point of cover. He knew he couldn't do much but he was setting himself up for when he would be needed most.

By this point the carnage was beginning to run rampant. Red Hacker, in desperate need to complete his Hack did so and made a run for their exit but was slowed down by the open waterworks leaving him exposed in the open.

With only a drop of life left Blue Grunt returned fire on Red Leader, unloading everything he had into the Heavily Armoured Unit at close range. It seemed like maybe things were turning for the better for Blue Team as Red Leader's armour faltered and Red Leader fell to the ground incapacitated.

Red Sniper turned his attention to Blue Leader but failed to get a bead on his target; meanwhile Blue Leader, shrugging off the damage from Red Sniper waded through open water to reach the downed Blue Hacker and revive him with a Medium Medi-Kit before being downed himself by Red Grunt.

Red Hacker; continuing his run for the drop location could see the target in sight; just one more sprint and he would be home free.

At the same time on the other side of the board, from behind cover confidently strode the Blue Sniper who; raising his rifle to his eyes drew a long ranged shot against Red Hacker. Pausing just long enough to verify the target, looking over the incapacitated form of Blue Leader, and past the injured but alive Blue Hacker, his target was in his sights.

BOOM! Headshot! Red Hacker down in one shot.

This was met by Red Grunt who opened up on Blue Hacker once again Incapacitating him while Blue Grunt moved forward straight into the sights of Red Sniper who finally put him out of his prolonged misery.

All alone with no cover between himself, his fallen team members and the now infamous Red Sniper; Blue Sniper weighed up the odds and fled allowing Red team to recover their Incapacitate Hacker complete with Hacked Data and access the dropsite.

Red Team Wins!


Thoughts and findings:

This was a great experience for me. I found the exchange of gunfire both cinematic and tense. Despite what I expected, Sniper Rifles were valuable but not the game winners I expected, with more than one occasions only doing a single wound per turn.

I also learned that a few changes were needed, like Hacker Decks being toned down - which was done mid game and instantly made Hacking a more tense (and rewarding when it succeeded) experience.

The latest rules pack can be found here:

And I am currently deciding on Deployment.

I see two, maybe three options - board edge deployment, 6" deployment and anywhere in between.

Last night I found that anything under 6" deployment was a moot issue. During turn 1 all that happened was Units moved to the cover they would have started in at 6" deployment, resulting in an additional (boring and wasted) turn, but I need further testing to establish if this is the trend or the exception.

Next up: HACKERS!!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

Monday, 2 February 2015

PC Game of the Year: The Winner!!

It's that time! Time to announce the winner of the New Fairbank News PC Game of the Year 2014 Award!

Alien: Isolation

You all knew it was coming and here it is!

Released in the tail end of the year, Alien: Isolation had some tough competition to contend with but ultimately it's position as PC Game of the Year has been established for the following reasons:

Graphics & Audio
Make no mistake; Alien: Isolation is beautiful, however it does so with very modest system requirements creating extremely striking visuals without requiring a Goliath of a rig to run it on high+.
Largely I put this down to their in-house engine which has clearly been tailored from day one to do exactly what it needed to.
All of which ties in fantastically with their audio with music and sound effects that if they are not directly lifted from the movie are beautifully recreated for our enjoyment.

Alien: Isolation gets so much right! It provides you with a vast variety of difficulty levels and doesn't shove your face in the dirt if you are not particularly skilled at horror/survival games, but more importantly is it's pacing.

The game starts as you expect with a continuous high level of pathetic fallacy. The cast of the game may think that they are either in a certain type of danger, or possibly even completely safe, but as the audience we know what is eventually coming. The only question is when.

For a brief moment mid game it does begin to dip as we are spared from the relentless attacks from The Alien, but even then as an audience member; when the cast thinks they are safe, we know that the game is called Alien: Isolation for a reason, and it will once again only be a matter of time when you are reunited with your long lost friend; and when it does happen, you will remember that moment for a long time after!

The Same - But Different
Let's not forget, the first person horror survival game is nothing new. In the Post-Amnesia period we were bombarded by clones and copies which in my view peaked at the horrifyingly amazing Outlast, but Alien: Isolation managed to take this and make the genre it's own. It didn't break or even the rules, and it didn't break new ground either, it just did everything right.

Bringing everything to an end; Alien: Isolation is a brilliant game. I played it over multiple sessions and tried to share as many of them as possible via my Twitch and YouTube accounts and the game walked the wonderful line of tension. It kept you on your feet at all times, but never so much that the very thought of playing the game made your stomach do somersaults.

For these reasons I am extremely proud to give the New Fairbank News PC Game of the Year Award to Creative Assembly for Alien: Isolation!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley