Techland started development on Dead Island in 2005, but the zombie-themed first-person action-RPG hybrid didn’t shamble onto shelves until 2011. Three years later, publisher Deep Silver has finally deigned to grace the App Store with a Mac port, but it’s no surprise that the game’s design, writing, and structure feel a bit dated.
It’s been some time since we last heard about Modern Combat 5, the latest in Gameloft’s iPhone and iPad military shooter series. In fact, we played the game at the Electronic Entertainment Expo last June and came away impressed by the brief demo, and it was slated to debut last fall — but it never appeared. Now the newly branded Modern Combat 5: Blackout is “coming soon” to iOS, says the publisher, which revealed additional details about the game’s single-player campaign today.
The appearance of a traditional Call of Duty on iOS is long overdue – with the gap ably filled by Gameloft's lookalike Modern Combat series – as earlier entries focused on the Zombies survival side mode from the console games. But much as Call of Duty: Strike Team resembles its big-budget brethren on the surface, it's not quite as typical as it seems thanks to the ability to switch to an overhead tactical view and control multiple squad members with simple taps. And that's a very good thing, as the mobile-friendly perspective is actually the better half of this glossy military shooter experience.
Following a tutorial outlining its unique controls, The Drowning tasks you with a reasonable mission for a game about shooting zombie-like creatures: Clear out the area around a potential headquarters. Two minutes later, you might be confused as to why it's over when there are still enemies to slay. Soon, it becomes clear that that's all there is to the game's approach – a series of two-minute time attacks against endless waves of brain-dead enemies. It's not really a bad thing, as it keeps the game playable on the go, but you'll soon find that freemium drawbacks stack up in a hurry and take away from the enjoyable and uniquely controlled combat within.
Following the initial announcement this spring of its impending release, Aspyr revealed this week that well-received first-person shooter sequel BioShock Infinite will make its Mac debut on August 29. The vibrant adventure, which is the best-selling multiplatform release of 2013 thus far according to NPD, launched on PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 back in March. Pre-orders for the shooter are open now from Aspyr's own GameAgent service, though it will also be available via the Mac App Store and Steam.
Sometimes, it feels like it’s hard to say anything new about the Call of Duty franchise. Foreign extremist group threatens the world, the hero shoots scads of terrorists in the face — you know the drill. But Black Ops manages something unique. New additions to online multiplayer offer an incentive to keep returning to the well, the zombie-blasting mode returns in a big way, and the entire affair is wrapped in one of the craziest, most exciting narratives in the series.
A battle-scarred wasteland, mutants, and an evil shadow government; cry as we might for originality in all forms of entertainment, postapocalyptic themes are more pervasive in nerd culture than black, plastic-frame glasses. Following in this great tradition comes id Software’s Rage (ported to Mac by Aspyr Media), a gorgeously rendered game that plucks liberally from the vine of similar titles--and goes nowhere with it.
Gamers who remember multiplayer first-person shooter matches in the days before broadband will feel right at home with Battlefield 3: Aftershock, as everything from a relative dearth of ways to play to lag-filled matches are present here.
Originally released in 2010 for consoles and PC, 2K Games’s BioShock 2 has finally made its way to the Mac, thanks to the porting efforts of Feral Interactive. Was this sequel to one of the most celebrated first-person shooters of all time worth the wait? If you’re keen on being immersed in a dark, often terrifying, and fully realized world with a deep storyline that demands your investment, then the answer is most assuredly yes.
Doom was released by id Software in 1993, and it cleverly combined hugely innovative gameplay features with a storyline crammed with controversial satanic imagery… so its success was assured. Playing the part of a lone soldier up against the hordes of Hell, the player had to navigate his way through the maze-like levels, blasting the enemies with a range of destructive weapons. Multiplayer mode and the ability to design your own level mods gave the game longevity. It laid the foundations on which gaming’s most popular genre would be built.